Tag: Mystery

Book Review: The Agency: A Spy In The House by Y.S. Lee

Posted September 26, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 5 Comments

Title: The Agency: A Spy In The House

Author: Y. S. Lee

Publisher: Candlewick

Publication Date: February 2011

Genre: Young Adult Historical Fiction, Mystery

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book One

Synopsis can be found here.

Review:I will be honest. I was hesitant to read this book. I’m not a big fan of historical Victorian England fiction. Perhaps I haven’t read enough of it, or perhaps what I had read was too dry for my taste.

But this book series turned it all around for me.

My friend Alethea at Read Now Sleep Later recommended I read it. Thanks to the powers that be that 1. She knows her stuff! And 2. I listened to her.

This is one of those books secret gems that isn’t widely known, but my friends who have read it all love it. And what’s not to love?
The mystery is rich and thrilling. Mary Quinn herself is multi-layered, full, diverse and complex. And her big secret? Well, I just wish there will be more characters modeled after her in the future! She’s an old soul in a teenager’s body, coming to terms with her past and her future. Facing danger at every turn. And perhaps, falling in love?

The love story isn’t the central storyline in the book, which is refreshing in itself. James is a great companion for Mary and their conversations made me giggle. Tension filled and funny, the chemistry between these two leaps off the page. And James is a great lead male. He’s equal parts intriguing, dashing, funny and strong.

Lee’s writing is so strong, I immediately appear in her Victorian England just by opening the book.

An awesome debut. Book two “The Body At The Tower” is currently out and book three “The Traitor and the Tunnel” will hit shelves in the United States in February 2012. My friend bought book three already, UK edition, from Book Depository. Yeah, she couldn’t wait. That’s how good.

Rating 9 Ridiculously Awesome, like Cookies and Ice Cream

Posted September 26, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 5 Comments

***Romance Report*** Book Review: Maybe This Time by Jennifer Crusie

Posted September 12, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 3 Comments

Title: Maybe This Time

Author: Jennifer Crusie

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Publication Date: August 2010

Genre: Adult Romance/Ghost Story

Series or Stand Alone: Stand Alone

Synopsis can be found here.


Andie is ready to get married. She’s newly engaged and ready to start over, and forget about her ex husband North Archer. But as she’s severing ties, North pulls her in to babysitting two orphans who are now in North’s care. Andie realizes these two children aren’t acting out from being neglected. Something more sinister is at work and to save the children and herself, she has to uncover what.
This is my first Jennifer Cruise book, and as I’m relatively new to the romance genre, I wasn’t sure what to expect. After being enchanted by this story, I went out and read a couple of other books by Cruise. While some reviewers thought this book was a little different from Crusies’s other works, that’s what I liked most about it. (I found Cruise’s other works to be lighter than this story.)
There is a lot to like in this story. Andie is a smart and loyal character, just doing her best and trying to stay away from her handsome and emotionally detached ex husband. She’s had enough! But oh, who could really blame her for being pulled back in…
North is sexy, standoffish and romantic all in one. As the misunderstood hero, he’s flawed and stubborn. North’s journey through the novel is the most drastic, and the most satisfying
Add that North’s fun and charming brother, Andie’s mom and North’s mom around to make trouble, two haunted children and some ghosts and you have a novel that’s not completely romance, but not just thriller/ghost story either. It’s really more than that. And did I mention the story is creepy? Children and ghosts really spook me out in general, but Cruise goes a step further making me scared for Andie and the kids. This is not Casper and his uncles. We’re not talking horror or anything, but it was way scarier than I thought it was going to be for a little romance novel.
I leant my copy out to a couple of friends, both devoured the book in less than two days. 
There are some scenes that are for mature audiences, though not as graphic as some romance novels I’ve read in the past, you have been warned.
Suspenseful and hot, this has become of my favorite romance stories. 

Rating 9, Ridiculously Awesome like Cookies and Ice Cream

Posted September 12, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 3 Comments

Book Review: Faithful Place by Tana French

Posted September 5, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 4 Comments

Title: Faithful Place

Author: Tana French

Publisher: Penguin

Publication Date: June 2011

Genre: Adult Mystery Fiction

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Three
Synopsis can be found here.

Tana French continues to impress me with her layered mysteries and haunted writing.
The first book in the series: In The Woods, is a creepy mystery that won many awards.
Book Three is another addition to this fantastic series.
Frank Mackey, a small supporting character that has popped up in the world previously, gets his own mystery to solve.
Faithful Place is Frank’s old neighborhood, a haunted poor town he fled twenty some odd years ago. He goes back only to find some things don’t change, such as his abusive family. But he also remembers the night he left, and the girl who was supposed to leave with him but never did. So begins his own investigation into his past, and solving a mystery that perhaps should have remained unsolved.
French’s stories are all haunting and beautiful, weaving Ireland and its people through like mythical beings. Honestly though, I think this is her best book in the series. Frank’s history is rich in detail, as is the town he once lived in. His family problems are laid bare, real and uncomfortable. The dialogue is beautifully written and I had to read slowly to get the full thickness of the words. I could hear the voices as clear as if they were next to me. And again, the writing, the mystery, it’s all done so well I forgot to eat, drink tea or feed my bunny. Seriously. I just needed to know what was going to happen.
This chilling and intense story will keep you reading through the night.
If you want to start at the beginning of the series, In The Woods is book one and The Likeness is book two. (If you are going to read either books one or two, read them in order. It makes a much more emotional punch if you do.)

But you don’t need to read either of these to enjoy Faithful Place. 

Review 10 One of the Best

Posted September 5, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 4 Comments

Book Review: Death Cloud (Sherlock Holmes: The Legend Begins) by Andrew Lane

Posted August 29, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 4 Comments

Title: Death Cloud

Author: Andrew Lane

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Publication Date: February 2011

Genre: Young Adult Historical Mystery Fiction

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book One

Synopsis can be found here.

Review: There may be more stories written by other authors about Sherlock Holmes than by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle himself.  That says a lot right there. Holmes is clouded in his own mystery- a solitary figure, master in the art of deduction, a bit eccentric and very little is known about his past.

This is what makes Andrew Lane’s Holmes so enjoyable. Whether you are familiar with the original Holmes stories or not, he is so engrained in western culture with his signature deerstalker style hat, its hard to not recognize the popular literary figure.
Lane’s Holmes is young, curious and adventurous. While we see the slowly layered foundation of the man he is to become, this Holmes is fun to read. Along with his tutor Crowe and friend Matty, Sherlock starts his first adventure. He is only just a boy, but the potential is there and fueled by Crowe’s own skill and wisdom, it’s easy to see how young Sherlock develops into the man he is famous for.
Matty is true and loyal supporting character. Young, alone and rough around the edges, he makes the perfect friend for privileged Holmes.
Lane does a good job of prolonging the mystery, even if I had guessed it chapters earlier. There is a good deal of action and a couple of very threatening characters, so I think young boys might really enjoy this early Holmes adventure.  It’s light on the girl, and yes, of course there’s a girl, and heavy on the danger, which makes it perfect for boys maybe around 13 yrs old.
A quick read and a good debut to a promising series.

Review 6 Good but wouldn’t own a copy

Posted August 29, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 4 Comments

Book Review: Naked In Death by J. D. Robb

Posted August 2, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 3 Comments

Title: Naked In Death
Author: J. D. Robb
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: July 1995
Genre: Adult Mystery Fiction

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book One
Synopsis can be found here.
Eve Dallas, a police Lieutenant in a futuristic New York City, hunts the killer of a beautiful socialite and gets more than she bargained for. The first book in this beloved and looong series, 32 books and counting, introduces us to the main group of characters that will continue on through the series and grow in our hearts.
J. D. Robb, a pen name for Nora Roberts, writes this mystery series very well. It was recommended to me from a lover of Nora Roberts and having read Nora Roberts before, I thought I would give it a try. I was not let down.  Eve’s world and her voice is sound. She is a strong, takes-no-prisoners character who not only fights crime, but has also her own inner demons every day. I can’t say Eve is likeable, in this first book especially. But be patient. Her character grows with the series.
While investigating this case, she meets the undeniably sexy Roarke, who happens to be a suspect. Handsome and mysterious, Roarke becomes fascinated with Eve also and well, things get…Heated. Irish, rich and very very male, he is the quintessential romance male lead in those Harlequin paperbacks you see in the drugstores. But that doesn’t mean he’s flat. Roarke is a multi dimensional character who I rooted for during the entire book. (Please don’t let him be the killer, please don’t let him be the killer)
This first book hooked me onto the series so bad, I went out and bought the remaining books in the series. Make no mistakes -while this is probably found in your local bookstores’ mystery section, the best parts of the book are the sweet, patient scenes between Roarke and Eve.  And this is where Robb/Roberts shine.
A fun, romantic thriller mystery book. Easy to read. Likeable characters. Lots of chemistry.
Go on! You know you want to.
Rating: 9 Ridiculously Awesome like Cookies and Ice Cream

Posted August 2, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 3 Comments