September 27, 2018

'P' is for Peril by Sue Grafton

Kinsey Millhone never sees it coming. She is mired in the case of a doctor who disappeared, his angry ex-wife, and beautiful current one–a case that is full of unfinished business, unfinished homes, and people drifting in and out of their own lives. Then Kinsey gets a shock. A man she finds attractive is hiding a fatal secret–and now a whole lot of beauty, money, and lies are proving to be a fatal distraction from what Kinsey should have seen all along: a killer standing right before her eyes. . . .

Man, I don’t know what it is about this book in particular but it took me what felt like forever to get through it. I couldn’t find myself caring at all about the missing doctor or his family.

It felt more like reading about Kinsey running in circles than actually doing anything, and it was missing a lot of her wit that we are used to. It was there, it just wasn’t as strong. So, that, along with a case that I didn’t care about made it a struggle.

It started to get intriguing once we learn the twist about her new office landlords. That storyline seemed to carry it until the end as the other one was winding down.

It was an interesting book that I probably would have gotten bored with if it wasn’t a Kinsey Millhone book. It wasn’t written differently than the other, I just couldn’t make myself care about the other characters.

3/5 Stars

Memorable Quotes: “This sandwich, I confess, was the highlight of my weekend, which is what life boils down to when you’re celibate.”

“I hadn’t even realized I’d fallen asleep, except for the drooling, which I don’t ordinarily do when awake.”

“Who were these two? Maybe we were on the verge of a burglar’s jamboree, all three of us stealing files for differing but nefarious purposes.”

“Death, by its nature, reshapes the connection between family members and friends. Survivors tend to gather, using food and drink as a balm to counteract the loss. There is usually laughter. I’m not quite sure why, but I suspect it’s an integral part of the healing process, the mourner’s talisman.”

Click To Purchase!

September 11, 2018

The Medical Examiner by James Patterson

Two bodies arrived at the morgue--one was still breathing. 
A woman checks into a hotel room and entertains a man who is not her husband. A shooter blows away the lover and wounds the millionairess, leaving her for dead. Is it the perfect case for the Women's Murder Club--or just the most twisted?
I really haven’t been able to get into any of the BookShots yet. I figured I would give this one a chance since it’s part of the Women’s Murder Club series. It’s always good to spend some more time with the characters I’ve grown to love over the years. 

I hate to say it, really, but this one confirmed my feelings about the BookShots. They’re so cheesy, they don’t add anything to the series, and I’m just not sure what the point it. The writing is more cringe worthy than anything. We’ve known these characters for years now, so why did we need “Claire Washburn” in almost every chapter. We know her whole name, she’s usually referred to as just Claire. So, why was it different in this one. 

I feel like all of the characters were more extreme versions of themselves here too. It was off because Lindsay was on vacation so it was more about Claire, Cindy, and Rich. But it just wasn’t right. They didn’t act like themselves. It was hard to get through. 

I guess the storyline was interesting, but it really could have been developed into a full-length novel and actually explored. Although, Joan was an absolutely awful character, so I’m glad I didn’t have to read a long one about her. 

I just don’t like these BookShots. Sorry. Also - the cover of the book makes no sense. That never happens in the book.

1/5 Stars – just because it’s the Women’s Murder Club

September 4, 2018

'O' is for Outlaw by Sue Grafton

Through fourteen books, fans have been fed short rations when it comes to Kinsey Millhone's past: a morsel here, a dollop there. We know of the aunt who raised her, the second husband who left her, the long-lost family up the California coast. But husband number one remained a blip on the screen until now.
The call comes on a Monday morning from a guy who scavenges defaulted storage units at auction. Last week he bought a stack. They had stuff in them—Kinsey stuff. For thirty bucks, he'll sell her the lot. Kinsey's never been one for personal possessions, but curiosity wins out and she hands over a twenty (she may be curious but she loves a bargain). What she finds amid childhood memorabilia is an old undelivered letter.
It will force her to reexamine her beliefs about the breakup of that first marriage, about the honor of that first husband, about an old unsolved murder. It will put her life in the gravest peril."O" Is for Outlaw: Kinsey's fifteenth adventure into the dark side of human nature.
Wow, okay. So I thought ‘M’ was emotional. Talk about the last paragraph of this one…. My heart hurts. But, I’m getting ahead of myself. 

We are now 15 books into Kinsey’s story, and we learned a lot about her and her past in this one. With an overall slow moving pace, it kept the book alive and interesting. The subject matter was intriguing, but it wasn’t action packed like some of the other books. At least she was in Santa Teresa for most of it – but that’s just my own personal thing if you’ve read my past reviews about the series.  

It also had two super random plot lines thrown in. They both moved the story forward, but they seemed like throw ins. First was the guy at the beginning that brought Mickey back into Kinsey’s life. His part was integral in the story, but it was over so quickly. Second was the document production at the Honky Tonk. It was just kinda shrugged off. I’m not sure it had to be there at all, but it didn’t detract from the book. 

I feel like as the series goes on, the books get more and more descriptive. I started noticing it in ‘M’, it was really evident in ‘N’, and it was still there at times in this one. Interesting little observation, but I’m curious to see if the trend continues. It also seemed like there was less dialogue in this one. Maybe that’s just compared to the last two. 

Overall, I really enjoyed learning more about Kinsey’s past and the characters that she used to interact with. I think having one book dedicated to exploring it is a great option rather than spending needless time throughout the series going through it. 

4/5 stars just because it was a little slower

Memorable Quotes: “Once in awhile a piece of old business surfaces, some item on life’s agenda you thought you’d dealt with years ago. Suddenly, it’s there again at the top of the page, competing for your attention despite the fact that you’re completely unprepared for it.”

“The truth about lying: You’re putting one over on some poor gullible dunce, which makes him appear stupid for not spotting the deception. Lying contains the same hostile elements as a practical joke in that the “victim” ends up looking foolish in his own eyes and laughable in everyone else’s. I’m willing to lie to pompous bureaucrats, when thwarted by knaves, or when all else fails, but I was having trouble lying to a man who wrote worm adventure stories for his great-grandson."

“For once my angels were in agreement. One said, Nobody’s perfect, and the other said, Amen.”

“On the one hand, I was a true law-and-order type, prissy in my judgement, outraged at those who violated the doctrines of honesty and fair play. On the other hand, I’d been known to lie through my teeth, eavesdrop, pick locks, or simply break into people’s houses, where I snooped through their possessions and took what suited me. It wasn’t nice, but I savored every single minute of my bad girl behavior. Later, I’d feel guilty, but I still couldn’t resist. I was split down the middle, my good angel sitting on one shoulder, Lucifer perched on the other."

“What is it that prompts us to reenact our unresolved issues? We revisit our wounds, constructing the past in hopes that this time we can make the ending turn out right.”

“After the rapture of love comes the wreckage, at least in my experience."

Click To Purchase!

September 1, 2018

The 17th Suspect by James Patterson

A series of shootings exposes San Francisco to a methodical yet unpredictable killer, and a reluctant woman decides to put her trust in Sergeant Lindsay Boxer. The confidential informant's tip leads Lindsay to disturbing conclusions, including that something has gone horribly wrong inside the police department itself. 
The hunt for the killer lures Lindsay out of her jurisdiction, and gets inside Lindsay in dangerous ways. She suffers unsettling medical symptoms, and her friends and confidantes in the Women's Murder Club warn Lindsay against taking the crimes too much to heart. With lives at stake, the detective can't help but follow the case into ever more terrifying terrain. 
A decorated officer, loving wife, devoted mother, and loyal friend, Lindsay's unwavering integrity has never failed her. But now she is confronting a killer who is determined to undermine it all.
It was weird having a Women’s Murder Club where it didn’t feel like Lindsay was the main character. It was more about Yuki’s case, which was fine and interesting – just weird. 

I guess it makes sense that Yuki’s case was the highlight of the book, because Lindsay’s story wasn’t all that interesting. There wasn’t much mystery around it even though we didn’t have all the details. It just didn’t pull me in like some of the others had. It’s always great being back in Lindsay’s world as she is one of my all-time favorite protagonists, but 17th Suspect came up a bit short. 

I’m also not sure that I enjoyed the outcome of Yuki’s trial. There are going to be spoilers here, so if you don’t want them, my rating for this book is 2.5/5 stars and if you’re already immersed in the WMC story, it’ll go by quickly and you have to read it to stay up to date. 

Yuki hears about a case involving a man accusing a woman he works with of raping him at gun point. He has video of it and it seems like a slam dunk case. But, the longer it goes on, the more skeptical Yuki gets, and her gut leads her in the right direction. The man is lying. He has framed the woman of a violent sexual crime to try to get money out of her. 

Now, while this storyline is totally valid, and it’s obviously a thing that happens, these books are written yearly. And, in this social climate we are currently in, I’m not sure that a book about a fake rape accusation was the way to go. They could have made a very strong social point about the fact that men can be raped just like women can. It’s a very real problem that keeps getting pushed aside and not taken seriously. 

James Patterson is a strong name. Knowing people who have struggled with this and are trying to speak out about it, I was hoping he would attach his name to a strong position. Instead, we see more fake rape accusations and a man ended up NOT being the victim. 

Maybe I have too many personal beliefs and feelings tied to this, but it was frustrating. It did show how a fake accusation can totally ruin someone’s life. But, I think we know this.

2.5/5 Stars

Click to Purchase!