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review 2015-11-27 22:24
Finished: Private by James Patterson
Private - Maxine Paetro,James Patterson

 

Finished Private by James Patterson.  I liked it very much and will be starting the next book in the series very shortly.

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review 2015-01-02 15:32
The Test
The Test - John Lansing

Author: John Lansing

  • Published: November 2014 by Tatra Press

A Short Story

 

A coming-of-age story set in 1950s, small-town Long Island, at a time when suburban America is about to undergo  seismic societal changes.

Jack Morgan returns, for what he knows will be the last time, to Baldwin, Long Island in order to settle his parents’ affairs. He felt indifferent about the sale of his boyhood home until he found himself parked outside. Looking at the house unleashed the floodgates of memories and emotions, taking him back to 1963 when he was a boy of fourteen in a completely different social and racial climate.

 

Jack and his two best friends, Gene and Greg, are sprucing up and getting a little buzzed on beer before heading to the dance hall. The evocative atmosphere is captured perfectly and is so relatable. Having the pre dance drinks for dutch courage, only in our case it was cider – yuck! Even after all this time I still can’t so much as think of drinking the stuff. The groups of boys and girls separated by the width of the room, the music and the coloured lights. After a couple of false starts Jack gets to dance with the girl of his dreams. Only it’s anything but straightforward.

“Jack, you’ve got to leave…now. No shit. I heard some crazy talk. Go! Now!”

I read the fear in Vida’s eyes; she nodded her head yes. I took her lead and we were on the move across the dance floor, hearts thumping. We grabbed our coats and were out the door and walking briskly down Grand Avenue before the song ended.

A touching teenage love, described with feeling and emotion, which could never be realised without probable tragic consequences. But, above all else, this is a poignant and disturbing reminder of the social conflict of the time. Racial prejudice was prevalent in most communities and was a major factor for a large number of people. When the first black family arrives in Baldwin the event is viewed with mounting dismay and anxiety by the towns’ residents. As Jack finds out to his cost.

 

For all this is short there’s a lot of story going on. The writing is distinct and expressive and has a truly authentic feel. Real people, real situations. And the ending! I hurt for Jack. He has never found lasting happiness, the fact he has three ex-wives is indicative, and it would be so sad if the reason was an unrequited first love, especially given the circumstances. A very emotive story told exceptionally well and one that leaves a lasting impression.
 
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review 2014-08-28 05:00
Fading Hope (Anthology)
Fading Hope - Jack Wallen,Rebecca Besser,Eli Constant,Morgan Garcia,Thea Gregory,Claire C. Riley,Armand Rosamilia
I never realized how much I craved a happy ending - or at least a semi-happy ending - in stories until I read Fading Hope. The bleak outlooks and dire situations, where there is no correct path, no right choice to be made, made me realize that I'm satisfied with my mundane life with its potentially happy ending.
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review 2012-01-26 00:00
Private: #1 Suspect (Jack Morgan, #2) -... Private: #1 Suspect (Jack Morgan, #2) - James Patterson, Maxine Paetro This is a book by James Patterson, so already you know not to expect anything worthy of any prestigious book awards (especially if his recent co-authored books are anything to go by), but this book was an enjoyable read which kept me turning the pages long into the night. Book 2 in the Jack Morgan series but the third book to be about 'Private', Jack finds Colleen Malloy's (ex-lover) body in his bed and all the evidence points to him. He and his team have to prove his innocence whilst carrying out various jobs for their clients. One thing I liked about this compared to the first Private book was that it flowed better, the first book seemed a bit all over the place and had too many stories to concentrate on but I found this one easier to follow. One of Patterson's better books.
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review 2010-08-19 00:00
Private (Jack Morgan)
Private - James Patterson,Maxine Paetro You know, James Patterson used to be one of my favorite authors. His ability to create suspenseful, tight plots was something that I envied and admired. Lately, though, it seems more like Patterson's (less skilled) co-authors are doing more of the writing. In other words, I was disappointed in this book. When the villain is revealed in chapter 3 or thereabouts, and the rest of the book is spent figuring out how to trap him, it leaves a lot to be desired.
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