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Search tags: Josh-Lanyon
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review 2017-09-21 00:34
And this folks is why I've missed Josh Lanyon...
Stranger on the Shore - Josh Lanyon

I've had this one for awhile now and when I saw that it was on audio I decided that audio was totally the way to experience this story and damn! was I right.

 

Josh Lanyon has created one hella' awesome story with this one. 'Stranger on the Shore' is far more mystery than romance, now that doesn't mean there's no romance because there is one. But overall this story focused more on the mystery that was going on and while I like me some romance it doesn't have to be there all the time and given how well crafted the rest of this story was I'm good with it all.

 

Once again I'm a little late to the party with this one so rather than try and re-invent the wheel or in this case the 'rave review' I'm going to take the lazy way out and simply say "There are some awesome reviews out there for both sides of the argument...love it or leave it, but you can add me to the list of I loved this from start to finish". Jeremy York was the narrator for this thriller/mystery/romance and while this was my first time listening to this narrator, I'm hoping it won't be my last. I really enjoyed the listening experience. Mr. York nailed the voices for me. They were consistent, expressive, unique and very suited to how I imagined the characters would sound.

 

Listening to this audio book felt very much like how I imagine it would feel to listen to an old time radio program as my parents and grandparents did back in the day.

 

While I'm sure this was due in part to the strong influence that the book 'The Great Gatsby' and the 1961 song 'Stranger on the Shore' had on one of the MCs. I think it was more strongly influenced by the wonderfully crafted noir story stylings of Josh Lanyon and the superb narration of Jeremy York...you can be sure that this is another audio book that will be on my repeat list.

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text 2017-06-12 18:08
Stranger on the Shore by John Lanyon $1.99
Stranger on the Shore - Josh Lanyon

Twenty years ago, little Brian Arlington was kidnapped from his family's Long Island estate and was never seen again. The trail went cold, but investigative journalist Griff Hadley has always thought there was more to the story—much more. When the Arlingtons' patriarch invites him to stay at their estate to research his true crime book, Griff can't say no. It's the story of a lifetime.

 

But not everyone is happy about Griff's presence. Relatives and staff alike regard him coldly, including Pierce Mather, the Arlingtons' attractive lawyer, who is more than a little wary of Griff's motives.

 

When a stranger shows up claiming to be the long-lost Brian, Griff and Pierce are united in their suspicions. Startled to have found an ally in the buttoned-up lawyer, Griff soon realizes it's hard to keep a professional distance. Even in the midst of a groundbreaking investigation, even in the face of a shocking family secret…

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-06-07 04:42
The Monet Murders (The Art of Murder #2)
The Monet Murders: The Art of Murder Book 2 - Josh Lanyon

 

***SPOILERS AHEAD!***

 

After I recently reread The Mermaid Murders and realized it didn't quite live up to my original impression, I dialed down my expectations for this book. I really only wanted two things: an explanation of why Kennedy is the way he is, and a reason for me to root for this couple. It delivered on the first - eventually. It did not deliver on the second. I can’t be invested in a "relationship" that was barely lukewarm in the first book and then "developed" in between books, started the second book with them split up and kept them apart until the 60% mark. I had no reason to care about Jason's moping - and boy did he ever mope, often while processing crime scenes. He really needs to learn to compartmentalize. Jason and Sam had no chemistry and I really didn't care if they got an HEA or even an HFN. The sex scene was just that - a sex scene. 

 

Kennedy's reasons for treating Jason in the passive-aggressive, jerkass way that he does certainly did explain a lot - but it's not what I expect from a 46-year old top-notch FBI investigator-now-supervisor known for his directness. His behavior was very wishy-washy, and his excuses were more suited to a man half his age and a fraction of his supposed maturity. 


The mystery was good once it got going. There were a lot of layers to it, but it's not overstuffed. There are some TSTL moments from both Jason and Sam, and I actually have a hard time believing these guys have been in the FBI as long as they have - or never seen or read a mystery book to know basic murder mystery tropes. The climax was rushed and would never have gone that way. There's this thing called mobilization. And not running off solo to chase down something hinky when you've got an entire task force at your beck and call. Also, Lanyon needs to research basic physics on how bullets work. I was not at all in suspense when Jason was being shot at while underwater. I was scratching my head why the bad guy was wasting his ammo.

 

I had a vague feeling while reading the first book that Jason and Sam were lightweight versions of Adrien and Jake, and that impression was solidified here. Jason's not as interesting a POV character, and Sam's not as complex or compelling as Jake, so the comparisons just make these characters feel flatter as a result. That whole sidestep with Shipka had shades of Bruce Green to it too (minus him being a homicidal maniac). Lanyon often reuses themes in her stories, but this is the first time I felt like she was reusing characterizations. On top of that was the constant pimping of Winter Kill, another just-okay book with likable characters that I never got invested in, during the last half of the book. It worked my last nerve. Lanyon's crossovers used to be a lot more subtle. Not anymore. I didn't want to read about Winter Kill; I wanted to read this book.

To try to figure out a rating for this book, I'm going to split it up:

 

Romance - 1 star. It's pretty much non-existent until the last 75% of the book and that's just too late for me to get invested. 

 

Mystery - 3 stars. The various branches of the mystery were interesting and seeing Jason's determination to solve them was great. The resolution for Jason's case wasn't the usual, but I actually liked that. The climax was good until I started thinking about it and all the TSTL crap that went on. 

 

Characters - 3 stars. I did like what we learned about these two, but the side characters were just filling in spots, with maybe the exception of George. Kennedy's reasons for treating Jason like crap were pretty big - but something he should've worked out with a therapist early in his career before his obsession could become a potential liability to his investigations.

 

Editing - 4 stars. Above the average for this genre, but there are a lot more typos than Lanyon usually has in her works. 

 

Writing - 4 stars. Masterful as always, and really the saving grace here. She has a way of describing imagery and settings that put you in the location. She gets a little purple in the sex scene. I really wish she'd tame down the purple metaphors and similes. It's not as bad here as in some of her other works, but it still pulls me out of the scene.

 

Will I read the next one? I don't know. Maybe eventually, but it won't be a pre-order. 

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review 2017-05-24 04:45
Stranger Things Have Happened (An Adrien English Choose Your Own Adventure)
Stranger Things Have Happened: An Adrien English Write Your Own Damn Story - Josh Lanyon,Catherine Dair

I'll say this upfront: if you're not a fan of CYOA books or of the Adrien English series, then you're probably not going to get much out of this. If you are a fan of Adrien-with-an-E and so-so on CYOA, then I think this will still be enjoyable. If you're a fan of both, you will LOVE this!

 

I used to read Choose Your Own Adventure books when I was kid. Remember those? They were little paperbacks, usually stapled together, and you got to choose which way the story would go by picking what storyline to follow next. They could be quite entertaining to see all the different ways a story could be told. Now, by the time Ms. Lanyon wrote Come Unto These Yellow Sands, I had completely forgotten CYOAs existed, but reading that book sparked a lot of fun memories. Then Ms. Lanyon gifted us with this gem and ... I didn't get it and dragged my feet. I finally got it shortly after So This Is Christmas came out and still didn't read it. I guess I was waiting until the right moment, and this moment was it. 

 

Oh, what joy! Ms. Lanyon is certainly creative and she's given us so many different paths to choose. There are wacky shenanigans amok, and tentacles, and pirates, and some truly disturbing twists which thank God the actual story didn't go that way, let's just put it like that. The only thing that was missing was the Scooby Doo ending. :) But I'm sure if we ask real nice, she might give it to us as a Christmas Coda.

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review 2017-04-04 01:12
The Mermaid Murders by Josh Lanyon
The Mermaid Murders - Josh Lanyon

OK, no more serial killer mysteries by Josh Lanyon for me - or books where both MC's are law enforcement. Winter Kill didn't work for me at all, and now Mermaid Murders annoys me almost as much.

 

I think there are certain things that really bother me in a procedural type of book that I can overlook in other genres. Things like physical impossibilities - sensing when someone is looking at you, for example, or knowing a bunch of stuff you couldn't know from someone's expression or tone of voice. Procedurals are supposed to be tightly plotted and carefully constructed.

 

Also, the editing could use some help - people keep having the same conversations they already had, and forgetting things and re-figuring them out. I am guessing that happens when the author moves events around and then doesn't go back to make sure everything flows in the right order. 

I can accept Adrian English running off to be TSTL, but it irks me when an FBI agent does it. Also Jason's boss acts like a cartoon villain. I expect him to want to kill Moose and Squirrel in a minute.

 

This one has really good ratings, so I'm guessing it's me and not the book.

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