This is the fifth book in the John Rain series and they just keep getting better. John Rain is a half Japanese, Half American ex C.I.A. agent who is now an assassin for hire, his specialty is death by appearing to be natural causes or accidents. This book reunites him with Dox, a former sniper who also now is a killer for hire, in this story Rain and Dox along with Delilah, a Mossad agent they try to rid Tokyo of it"s most powerful Yakuza and also keep Rain's former lover Midori and his son safe from the Yakuza. This series is fast and the Rain character grows more complex and conflicted with each book, if you like Ludlum or Le Carre this might be for you.
The story takes place in Sterling, N.H., alternating between the present and past events that took place in lives of the central characters. Peter Houghton is a junior at Sterling High School, enduring years of verbal and physical abuse at the hands of classmates ever since grade school. His best friend in grade school was Josie Cormier who has since succumbed to peer pressure and now hangs out with the popular crowd that often instigates abuse of other students. The flashbacks reveal events in the lives of Peter and Josie that led up to Peter’s breakdown in which one final incident of bullying sends him over the edge and leads him to commit an act of violence that forever changes the lives of Sterling’s residents. Jodi Picoult has once again written another page-turner with incredible psychological and social insights into school bullying and violence. She has the ability in her writing to enable the reader to see the problem through the eyes of everyone involved in the story, leaving many haunting questions yet to be answered and resolved.
This is Michael Palin's sixth book. I applaud him for having the forbearing to keep a running diary during probably the most crazy period of his life: The formation and success of Monty Python. One reads about their not-so-humble beginnings to their million-dollar-grossing hit films. This 650-page book encompasses a glimpse into the day-to-day lives of arguably one of the funniest and most famous British comedy teams of all times. Read Palin's insights on all the different personalities of the team's members... their likes and dislikes... their loves and losses... the rewards and tolls of making it big in an industry that talent and timing is not always enough. I always thought that Palin was the most grounded member of Monty Python and I think this book is confirmation. To be creative and to be able to sustain that creativity for a long period of time and to be able capitalize on it, for most, is only a dream. This book is a must-read for the Monty Python fan and definitely for the anyone who is considering or has ever considered show business as a career.
This is the third in the Cotton Malone series, Cotton, Cassiopeia Vitt, and Hendrik Thorvaldson are back on yet another quest. They are racing against Irina Kovastina, new President of the Central Asian Federation, a new powerful group of the former "Stans". This time they are looking for Alexander the Great's tomb and his lost magic healing elixir, which can cure any disease. The book is predictable if you've read Berry, yet still fun reading.
This novel is told through the lives of its characters - Fos, an amateur scientist and his wife Opal, their impulsive best friend Flash, and their son, Lightfoot. The story touches on many themes such as the price of scientific and technological progress, the American Dream, and the enduring power of love. Set between the two world wars, the novel weaves personal tragedy with large-scale tragedy, as Fos unwittingly contributes to both the sickness of his wife and the development of the atomic bomb. Marianne Wiggins' writing is beautiful, poetic and insightful. This novel touches both your heart and the mind.
New book by James Patterson is a collaboration with Michael Ledwidge. Patterson introduces a new character, Michael Bennett, who is an Irish, New York City homicide detective and father of 10 adopted kids whose wife has terminal cancer. The two main plots spin from this family preparing for the Christmas holidays and the expected loss of the loving mother to 33 celebrities held hostage in St. Patrick's Cathedral. It's like "Dog Day Afternoon" meets "Going My Way." It is a quick read. I read the 400-page book in a half day. Once again Patterson has a main character (somewhat like Alex Cross) who is a grounded family man who struggles to balance his dangerous career and time-consuming workload while trying to be the best husband and father he can be. There are some nice twists at the end that are unexpected. This is a good 1st novel and I am already looking forward to the sequel. If you are a die-hard Patterson fan you won't be disappointed.
The last of Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy. Award winning. Great action/adventure story of a young girl growing up. But parents might want to consider the dark cosmology and theology that runs through this series. This cosmology/theology may be disturbing for younger readers.
This is the second book in Mr. Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, continuing the action (and there’s lots of action) from The Golden Compass. (And- The Golden Compass is now a new movie). All of the books in this trilogy have won prestigious awards. But parents may want to consider that some scenes include children in serious danger. There is also a rather dark cosmology and theology that runs through all three books, becoming ever darker in the later volumes.
Rebecca Davitch is a 53-year-old widow, mother, step-mother and grandmother. She seems to be a very happy person, satisfied with her life as it is, when she suddenly she is caught offguard by the feeling that she has become someone she was never meant to be. Amid many boisterous family gatherings, marriages, birthday celebrations and births, Rebecca attempts to retrieve the woman, life and goals she felt she had before she married Joe Davitch, divorced father of three little girls. Thinking that the she needs to find that quiet, intelligent girl who dropped out of college to marry a man she had known only 3 months, she even attempts to revive a long-dead relationship with her old boyfriend. This is a touching story of a woman's search for herself and the ensuing realization that she had much to be grateful for and happy about.
This book is well worth the recent hype that it has received. I was prepared not to like it at all, since the subject is a circus during the Depression. Sounded depressing to me. However, it is a very well written, poignant story, which would appeal to men and women alike. It has something for everyone, especially if you're an animal lover. I found it very interesting that it was written by a woman in a man's voice, which she accomplished very well.
Set during the Great Depression, Jacob Jankowski's world had been turned upside down when he became orphaned and homeless at the very time that he was to graduate Veterinary school. As luck would have it, he hopped on board a passing train which just happened to be the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. Before he knew it, he was put in charge of taking care of the circus animal menagerie. Amid the strange and sadistic world of this second-rate, down on its luck circus, Jacob falls in love with Marlena, the star of the equestrian act, who is married to the sick, twisted and cruel circus boss. Jacob is determined to protect Marlena and Rosie, the lovable elephant, from her husband's abusive behavior.