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review 2020-05-28 14:17
The Fire Court
Fire Court - Andrew Taylor

by Andrew Taylor

 

This started with a list of characters, something I always skip past. They don't mean anything until they become a part of the story!

 

However, once the story began, some familiar characters from the first book of the series appeared, most notably Catherine Lovett and James Marwood. Marwood's father, an old man without all his faculties, starts off in a sequence wherein he follows a woman thinking she is his wife, Rachel, who actually died years ago. He finds a body of a different woman and eventually discovers that the woman he followed is not Rachel.

 

Thus starts the mystery and intrigue that will shape the story. I found the pace a little slower in the first part of the book than in Ashes of London, the first book of the series, but still interesting and I'm glad I stuck with it as it gets better as more connections fall into place.

 

The pace actually gets very fast and dramatic in the later part of the book and the spiderweb of connections that have been set up throughout the story all fall into place. In a lot of ways it's a whodunnit, but with political intrigue and a lot of very human emotions involved. It's extremely well-written and I will be looking for a third book, which is hinted at by the very end.

 

The outcome surprised me not once but twice with plot twists I never saw coming. That's pretty rare!

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review 2020-05-26 20:19
I expected more
Fire & Blood - George R.R. Martin

I read all 702 pages,the book was a present so I sort of felt obligated to finish it.

 

Anyway,the book is written in second person.(I think) whereas you have a maester or whomever writes on westeros.And they tell the story of the Tagaryen history.And at some points the writer would insert a new person and his take on what happened.And then later in the book the original writer would say something like "and so and so would say,in a much more raucous way".

 

This book is more like a historical text,but it does have aereil dragonfights.

 

 

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review 2020-05-12 12:51
House on Fire by Joseph Finder
House on Fire - Joseph Finder

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I really enjoyed this book. I decided to read this book because it sounded like it would be an exciting mystery thriller. I hadn't read anything written by Joseph Finder before picking up this book but I didn't let that deter me since I am always looking for new authors to try. This is the fourth book in the Nick Heller series but I read it as a stand-alone and it worked well. I thought that the book got off to a very good start and told a very entertaining and exciting story. I am so glad that I took a chance and decided to read this book.

Nick Heller is a private investigator and he once served in the military. When Nick learns of the death of a good friend who once saved his life while in action, he goes to help the family right away. At the funeral, he meets a woman with ties to the company that produces the highly addictive drug which his friend was addicted to and this woman enlists Nick's help in proving that the company knew just how dangerous these drugs really are. Nick is not only dealing with this new client but is also juggling the needs of his nephew and providing support to the family of the friend he lost. I found the mystery to be really well done and quite complex. There were a lot of twists and turns that kept me guessing throughout the book and I couldn't figure out how things would work out until it was revealed in the story. I liked that there was not only a lot of action to keep things interesting but also a lot of more thoughtful investigative work that went into solving this case.

I liked Nick a lot from the start. We learn early on that he is a man that has a strong moral code. He works hard to do a good job and to always do the right thing even when it might cost him money in the end. We get a few glimpses into his past and learn that he is a man that learns from his mistakes and tries to do better in the future. I loved the way that he was able to slip into almost any situation and handle himself in such a way that he was rarely questioned. He was almost always able to see things that others might miss and stayed focused on solving the mystery.

I would recommend this book to fans of mystery thrillers. I thought that this was a really well done and exciting story that kept me guessing until the end. I really enjoyed watching Nick in action and look forward to reading more of this series in the future.

I received a digital review copy of this book from Penguin Group Dutton via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
I really enjoyed this book. This is the fourth book in the Nick Heller series but I read it as a stand-alone and it worked perfectly fine. I really liked Nick from the start and loved the story was full of action. There are several situations that Nick is dealing with during the book which I liked. The main mystery was really complex and it kept me guessing until the very end. I would definitely like to read more of this exciting series!

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review 2020-04-30 12:34
Fire: Demons, Dragons and Djinn
Fire Dragons, Demons & Djinn - Rhonda Parrish

by Rhonda Parrish

 

I like the idea of theme anthologies and the concept of this one really appealed to me. All the stories involve some sort of creatures of fire.

 

I hadn't heard of any of the authors so it was a bit of a gamble, and like most anthologies with a collection of unfamiliar authors, some stories appealed to me more than others.

 

We had an Ifrit, a fire sprite, demons, including one who fought an Angel, dragons, gryphons, genies, an elemental magician, a tribute to Jim Morrison (though the author didn't seem aware that he didn't write Light My Fire), a host of mythological fire gods, Phoenixes and an Aitvara.

 

Unfortunately five and a half of the twenty-one stories were written in present tense, which I detest and find difficult to read (one kept switching between past and present tense).

 

Four of the stories stood out as particularly good. These were:

 

The Second Great Fire by Laura VanArendonk Baugh, Breath of the Caldera by Wendy Nikel, The Midwife and the Phoenix by J.G. Formato and especially Double or Nothing by Mara Malins, which involved a game of cards that brought to mind Magic the Gathering, but with real creatures. This one made the book worthwhile on its own.

 

While I can only give the collection as a whole three stars, these authors I'll be looking to see what else they've written.

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review 2020-04-29 15:29
Elements of Horror: Fire
Fire - P.J. Blakey-Novis

Edited by P.J. Blakely-Novis

 

Third book in the Elements of Horror series. This one included some of the best stories of the series so far. Stand-outs include Did the Fire Look At You? and The Fire Fades. There were also a couple of stories that weren't quite up to the standard of this series, though certainly good enough for most anthologies.

 

Towards the end there was just one of the dreaded present tense stories and it finished off with a serial killer story, which is not my preferred sub-genre of Horror. I just can't identify with getting my jollies from burning someone to death. It was well-written, just not my cuppa.

 

The series has overall been way above average and the best stories in this one are really, really excellent. One of them left me just staring into space after finishing. I'm very much looking forward to the 4th book, Water, coming out in December. These go on my re-read shelf.

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