Thursday, October 31, 2013

Dark Magic, Christine Feehan

Gregori is safe!

And I finally get a woman who knows what's up!

Her reaction is kinda the same, but still, she has more info to go on.

And. It. Shows. She stops fighting it way earlier.

So, Savannah is the daughter of Mikhal and Raven. Raven has raised her daughter to be strong and independent. She's travels, performing a magic show. That's where she's been for 5 years.

Beyond that she's got more info than the past women - being a full Carpathian woman (Finally!!) - their story isn't as good as I had hoped.

Gregori is as wonderful and tragic as I had imagined, so there's that. And the evolution of his relationship with Savannah is really sweet. How she comes to understand what the 5 years without her cost Gregory, and his opinion of himself, is really sweet.

As was his comprehension of what she needs. I can admit there were quite a few tears through this one.

It's wasn't as memorable as I'd hoped, I guess.

There's some vampire hunting, here of course. They move to New Orleans (can't have a vamp series without at least mentioning NO!) and find the (human) vampire hunters active in the area.

They take care of them, of course, but in the process, they meet Gary, the most interesting part of the story.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Dark Gold, Christine Feehan

Book 3 of the Dark series and still interesting for the most part.

Though, I'm starting to worry it might get more repetitive as time goes on. More on that later.

The timeline is getting wonky again, too. Ok, so Mikhal bragged to Raven he had a computer that took up his whole desk in Dark Prince. So....what, 1960s? Then book 2 is 20/25 years later, so late 1980s-ish? Only now, Raven's daughter is all grown up, so it's like another 20 years later! So now we could be getting into the future, especially if we keep jumping forward. I hope we don't. If we stop, we should be ok.

Anyway, we meet Aidan and Alexandra here. Aidan lives in San Francisco and acts as the vampire hunter for the West coast on Mikhal's behalf. (I should clarify here, when I've talked about the hunters in the past, like the ones who hurt Jacques in Dark Desire, I'm talking about psycho humans).

He finds a vampire and kills him. Unfortunately, the vampire has turned a woman and now she's a deranged vampiress (yup, they use the feminine of the word) and she has a kid captive.

But wait!! She hasn't turned yet. The vampire only exchanged blood twice. And the kid? Her brother. The vamp was using him as leverage to make her comply.

Aidan only realizes this when he's about to kill her. He also realizes she's his lifemate. Of course, he's already taken too much of her blood, so he has to change her, hoping she doesn't have too much of the vamp in her.

And this is where I worry about repetition.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Dark Desire, Christine Feehan

OK, so another terrible cover, and the title is pretty horrendous, too.

According to the author's note, it wasn't Feehan's first choice. She wanted Dark Madness, which, while still cheesy, is way better. And more descriptive.

So, we meet Jacques, Mikhal's brother, in this one. Well, technically, we met him in Dark Prince, but we get to know him here.

We also meet Shea, a doctor researching her strange blood disease. She also has some psychic powers and a sun allergy.

Sounds familiar, right?

She travels to the Carpathian Mountains to research her father's people based on her mother's journal. Also because she's running from people who want to research on her. Funnily enough, they think she's a vampire.

The timeline here is a little funny, but the best I can make out, book 2 of the Dark series takes place about 20/25 years after book 1. At the end of Dark Prince, the Carpathians are planning to hide out for a bit. Raven and Mikhal have been attacked. The vampire hunters are dead, but they want to avoid stirring up a vampire hysteria like in the old days. Doesn't seem like it worked based on this book.

Anyway, about 8 years before this book, Jacques leaves hiding and returns home. The hunters find him about 6 years later and torture him. They then stake him and bury him alive. Luckily they didn't hit his heart so he doesn't die. Sadly, they didn't hit his heart so he doesn't die.

2 years in the ground, people!

Are you seeing why Dark Madness might have been a better title?

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Dark Prince, Christine Feehan

OK, try not to let the cover get you down. It's a pretty decent book 1.

Book 1's have a hard time right? A lot they need to get done. You've got to set up the characters, the general plot of the series. The feel/tenor of the series.

It's a lot of work.

This paranormal romance does a fairly decent job.

It's not exceptional. I can't lie. It's good. (There's lots of sex, FYI.) But it's got a really interesting take on the vampire legend.

See, there's a race called the Carpathians. They're an immortal race. They exist on blood, but they never kill their food. They actually think the idea of killing something and eating it's meat like we do is repulsive and barbaric. They are sensitive to light, but the whole garlic thing seems to be just a random myth. And they are definitely not dead, though they do appear that way when they're asleep. And their connected to the earth, so sleeping covered in dirt (aka buried), heals them.

So, is it just misunderstanding that created the vampires we know?

Nope. Not exactly.

Friday, October 25, 2013

DD Warren in Review

So, we've finished out the DD Warren series thus far.

I think it's clear I have some mixed feeling about this. The first 3 books were...kinda sucky. But it did improve after that.


The basic plot points are the same. X has a traumatic past that is back to get her. Despite logic and evidence to the contrary, DD suspects her, 'cause of course trauma equals violent crazy. Something happens to convince DD otherwise, and just before she breaks in to get the baddie, X kills him/her. Maybe there have even been some deaths before that which X gets away with too.

That's pretty much every book. And, look, I'm not a spoiler kind of person. Even knowing the end, even knowing how things turn out, HOW they get there is interesting. And Gardner makes the journey interesting - if occasionally annoying.

I really kind of this of DD as the poor man's Eve Dallas. Eve definitely had the worse childhood, but I mean more their personalities. They both live the job. They're both stubborn and like a good throw down. They're both terrified of love and family and commitment, but once they get it, they both realize it makes them better. Better people, better cops.

This isn't a series I'd enthusiastically recommend to anyone, but if someone asked if they should check it out, I'd tell them to start with The Neighbor - and you all know I hate reading out of order.

DD Warren series

Catch Me, Lisa Gardner

So, what's new mom, DD Warren up to now?

Well, she's back on the job and hunting a serial killer.

Well, two actually. Well, one confirmed, one suspected.

See, someone is killing sex offenders. Two died while DD was on maternity leave, and her first case now that she's back is another.

Three makes a pattern.

Then DD finds Charlie hanging out outside the crime scene. DD is suspicious and hauls her in. Charlie tells DD about the murders of her 2 childhood friends exactly one year apart. Now, as the anniversary approaches, Charlie is sure it's her turn.

Not a pattern, but on the way.

She doesn't want DD to stop it, she just wants DD to solve it.

Kinda sad, huh?

What makes it sadder is that Charlie is another tragic past character.

Sigh. Lisa needs to update her playbook.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Love You More, Lisa Gardner

So much for happy endings.

At the end of Live to Tell, DD and Alex were getting together. As had Danielle and her man. The baddies had gotten what they deserved. And for once, it didn't seem like anyone got away with murder. Sounds like a happy ending for me.

And now it's all ruined.


We start with a State Trooper accused of killing her husband - an abuser. Only then they realize the kid is gone.

Troopers responded to the death at the house, but fucked up the crime scene before they realized there was a missing kid.

So, Ms. DD gets called in.

And everything is wonky from the get-go.

The Trooper, Tessa, is weird. The timeline is weird. The story itself is weird. Everything adds up at face value, but not when you scrape the surface. It's like.....2+2=4, right? But then if you look at decimals, you find out, actually, it's 5.

See what I'm saying. And Tessa is definitely a 5.

So DD starts investigating. Now, the case is this weird mob conspiracy. Basically here's what you need to know.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Live to Tell, Lisa Gardner

We finally have a winner!

Things are definitely looking better on the DD Warren front.

OK, so we start with a family annihilation - that's when one family member takes out the others before killing themselves.

Then there's another one.

Coincidence, right?

Of course not.

First they find out someone tasered the dad, and thought to be annihilator, at the 2nd home. Then they find out the kids in both families have a connection to a pediatric psych ward.

And that's where we meet Danielle. She's a nurse. And a victim of a family annihilation.

So, what does DD think? Can't survive an annihilation without becoming violent. Wanting to annihilate other families.

Makes perfect sense, right?

Ok, so that's obviously wrong.

It's a little convoluted, but Danielle is the target, not the perpetrator. I'm not really going to go into the whole story, it's convoluted, like I said. But basically, her family wasn't annihilated like she's always thought. Now, someone who was involved is trying to recreate it. Revenge is part of it, but pure crazy-ass-ness is more.

Here's what got be on board with this book.

Friday, October 18, 2013

The Neighbor, Lisa Gardner

Ok, we're improving.

For one, this was the first one that really felt like a happy ending. Sure, Bobby and Annabelle got together at the end of Hide - to my disappointment, the beginning of this one talks about their wedding - but it still didn't give that...satisfied feeling happy endings usually produce.

Maybe because I was still hoping for DD and Bobby...

Anyway, this one did.

Of course, we have another woman getting away with murder, though. Two actually.

I can't get everything I want, I guess.

Also, DD is finally the main character. Though, I'm still not a huge fan of her.

So, we start with a missing wife/mother. Only, DD is instantly suspicious of the household. It's not too messy, not to clean, not too anything. Staged. And the husband is...withdrawn. Back in my hospital days we would say he had a flat affect. Which, could be shock, or, to DD's mind, a guilty conscience. Of course, I kinda think if he was guilty he would play up the grieving husband. Then again, maybe it's both, shock and guilt that he did it. But that goes back to DD trying to fit information into her theory regardless.

Of course, we're in his head, so we know he didn't do it.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Hide, Lisa Gardner


Ok, so this was a weird one for me. Mainly because it was just so damn familiar! And I honestly do not know why. As you can see from the cover photo, it was a TNT movie. So...maybe I saw that?

No idea, really.

I will say this was ever so slightly better than Alone.

At least I think it was. Maybe it was just because it was familiar.

I don't know. The deja vu really threw me off.

Again, DD takes a back seat to Bobby. So, that weirded me out again. And a lot of the same issues I had with Alone are back.


So, anyway, Bobby gets a call in the middle of the night before his first day as a detective - after the questions about the shooting in Alone, he needed a change. He gets this call from DD to come to a crime scene.

A crime scene that bears a remarkable similarity to where Catherine was kept when she was kidnapped as a child.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Alone, Lisa Gardner

So, this is actually a book I gave my mom as a gift a while back. I had found it on a list of for "the best" mystery and crime books. I was trying to find some new authors. *shrug*

When I asked my mom, she said it had been good, but frankly, I really didn't like this book.

It was wired.

First, this is the first book of the DD Warren series...except that DD is barely in it. It's all about this guy, Bobby.

Who does that?

Second, the other main character is Catherine, and I do not like her. I don't think we're supposed to, but still...

Third, I don't really like DD!! How can I not like the title character?


OK, lets get into this...

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Grant County and Will Trent In Review

 (<--- awesome picture of Karin, right?)

So, Grant County and Will Trent have come to a close for now. Well, Grant County is over for good I think. They'll all be Will Trent crossovers under the Will Trent name. 

That's what it looks like, at least.

I love them for the most part. 

I think my feelings about Lena are clear, so I'm not going to go belabor that. 

But lets not get too far ahead of ourselves. 

So, a lot happens over the course of these series. I think Slaughter's choices make for a really...surprising and interesting series. 

That doesn't mean I'm happy with all her choices. 

Friday, October 11, 2013

Unseen, Karin Slaughter

Fucking Lena.


So, last we saw Lena, she was leaving Grant County with Jared, Jeffery's son, in Broken.

Now Jared's in the hospital after being shot. In the home he shares with Lena. Just days after a raid she's leading goes bad. Really bad.

You can see where I'm going with this right? Lena's sloppiness at least, negligence at most, have caused someone else to pay with their lives. Again.

You would be mostly right. Jared makes it. And while their marriage is going through some issues, they come out at the end intact and looking up. Talking about kids. (Cause Lena as a mother isn't a bit terrifying.) Also, Lena's actions aren't directly responsible for his attack, though they didn't exactly help.

Her case is related to his attack and she could have done more, but mostly after the fact. So, maybe she couldn't have stopped it, but...

She also got Will involved.

You can imagine Sara's opinion on that.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Busted, Karin Slaughter

Another short story. This one is between Criminal and Unseen.

Will is on his way to an undercover gig. He stops for a frozen coke and it all goes to hell.

The convenience store is robbed and a cop shot. Will does some heroics and takes out the baddies.

Well some of them. Amanda and Faith show up, mostly to make sure Will's cover stays intact, and of course to round up all the baddies.

Not as good as Snatched, and really just acted as a set up for Unseen. (yup, read this one out of order, too.)

Busted, Karin Slaughter

Snatched, Karin Slaughter

So, this is a review for a short story (quickie) in the Will Trent series, taking place between Fallen and Criminal.

Snatched is a....well, I want to say a sweet story and it is at the end, but it feels wrong to say a story about a child abduction is sweet.

So, in Criminal, we learn that Will has been placed on "airport duty" as punishment for having his hair too long (yeah, I read these a bit out of order, sorry). Sara likes his hair longer, so Will's not willing to cut it.

We also learn in Criminal that's not really the reason. Turns out, Amanda, in typical Amanda fashion, is doing it so Faith can have some time with her mom after her mom's kidnapping ordeal. His hair is just an excuse. Or a torture device...

I Love Amanda. :)

So, Snatched is a story about Will's time in the airport. Airport duty is when he sits in a bathroom stall waiting for some guy to proposition him.

While in the bathroom, Will sees little girl feet in the stall next to him. He gets a hinky feeling about her and the guy she's with.

Sadly, he's right to be concerned.

He saves her, returns her to her mom, gets the baddies, and once again, all is right with the world.

Until all breaks loose in Criminal.

Snatched, Karin Slaughter

Criminal, Karin Slaughter

O. M. G!!

This was fantastic!

We finally get to learn more about Will's past.

So, Will and Sara are still going strong. Unfortunately, he spirals into despair when he finds out his father was released from prison.

We know is father killed his mother, but not much else.

Actually, there's another reason this is an awesome book: not only do we learn more about Will's past, we learn more about Amanda's.

Now, in Fallen, Faith's mom tells Will that Amanda is more like his mom that he thinks. As soon as she said that, I figured Amanda had found him when he was a baby. Still, now we get to see the whole story play out.

So, as much as I love that we learn about Will's origins, I love that we get to see young an naive Amanda.

Yes, Amanda was naive. Sheltered even.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Fallen, Karin Slaughter

I love this one! This series just gets better and better.

So, we learn a lot about Faith, her mom, and her mom's past. Remember I mentioned Will investigated Faith's mom? Well, now we get some answers.

So, Faith had her baby. I don't think I mentioned she was preggers, but she was. Like her first child, this was an oops baby. The father doesn't even know about the baby until this book. Kinda a shocker for him since they'd broken up before Faith even knew she was pregnant. She also found out she had diabetes at the same time.

So, Faith's life has been pretty all over lately.

Now, she's just had her baby and is returning home from mandated work training when she realizes something is wrong: her mom isn't answering any of her phone calls.

She finally makes it home in time to find one dead, one hostage, one with a gun, but no mom. Her mom managed to get the baby into the locked shed where her weapons are kept, but other than that, there's no sign of her mother.

Faith calls 911, but storms the house herself and kills the remaining two baddies. And despite one being a hostage, they are both baddies.

So, we start with some harcore Rambo shit from Faith.

After that it gets a bit more complicated.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Broken, Karin Slaughter

Ok, so now we've got a real crossover.

Unfortunately, that means Lena's back.



Ok, lets get to it.

It's Thanksgiving in Grant County.  Sara is home for the first time since Jeffery died. And what happens? That's right, Lena fucks up.

So, Sara calls Amanda and she sends Will.

As far as the Sara/Will story, this was a good book. They get to know each other better, and Will meets the fam. Tessa, Sara's sister, is back and pregnant, and as hilarious as ever. As is Cathy, Sara'a mom.

So, Sara and Will are bonding, but Will is still married to Angie. *sigh*

What's Lena done this time, you ask? Well, nothing so disgusting as what she did during Beyond Reach, but definitely sloppy and negligent.

This time she gets the apartment number wrong and mistakes the resident for an intruder. This causes a chain of events including the stabbing of Lena's partner, and the suicide of the (wrong) suspect in Lena's custody.

It's a complete cluster.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Undone, Karin Slaughter

So, this is the first crossover with Grant County. It's 3 years since the events in Beyond Reach.

A woman is hit by a car. She's been raped and tortured. Blinded. She walks out into the road, and...

...ends up in the ER with Sara.

That's where we begin.

Will and Faith are working well together, though there's still some...kinks to work out.

Where in Triptych, I felt that Will and Angie were just 2 damaged people who loved each other, but didn't know how to have a relationship, in this one...

I feel like Angie stopped being a victim and started being an abuser.

Stay with me, here.

We weren't in her head, like we were in Triptych, I admit that could be part of the switch, but I think it's more than that. In this book, Angie was cruel. She hurt Will on purpose. She wanted him to know that he wasn't worthy of anyone but her. He tries to stand up for himself. He tries to make a break, and she makes it clear that he's stuck with her. That he's not good enough to be with anyone else.

She calls him stupid.

She's...alluded to that before. Mocked him for his disability, thought subtly, but this was something different. This was "I can control you, and don't you forget it."

Like I said, she switched roles for me in this one.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Fractured, Karin Slaughter

Will Trent is back - and Angie is living with him.

She left the force after getting hurt in Triptych, and they're engaged.

Gave me false hope, damn it. They're still a disaster. An engaged disaster, but a disaster never-the-less.

We also meet Faith.

I'm a fan of Faith.

Faith is not a fan of Will.

See, Will's last assignment was to root out corruption and he came across Faith's mother in the process, who was then forced to resign.

So, yeah. Faith + Will = Tension!

And they're working a missing persons case. She's the partner of Leo, the guy who was the partner of the cop from Triptych. When Will realizes they're not at a murder scene, but a kidnapping scene, Leo gets kicked off the case and in trouble for missing the clues, and Faith gets partnered with Will.