Tuesday, November 30, 2010
I received a copy of THE TRUTH OF THE MATTER by Andrew Klavan, book three in the Homelanders series, from Thomas Nelson. The novel involves a boy named Charlie West, age eighteen. A terrorist group known as the Homelanders is hunting him. Somehow, he has lost a year of his life. During that time, people believe he killed a boy named Alex. He wants to recover that year. Overall, the book seemed too adult at times, and then at others, too childish. It is juvenile fiction, but some of the subject matter, and his age, made me think it would work better as an adult thriller. I also felt like there was a lot of repetition within paragraphs. The author used the same word multiple times, and it lost its potency. Other than that, the action kept me on the edge of my seat and the characters were not only believable, but incredible as well. The dialogue was believable, and there was not any swearing. It is a great story about loving your country and family. I will look for the two previous books in the series, and then reread this after. I assume it will make more sense then, and be more enjoyable. I recommend this novel to anyone seeking a fun, intelligent, adventure.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
I received a copy of THE SLEEPWALKERS by Paul Grossman from GoodReads and St. Martin’s Press. The novel takes place in Berlin, in the year 1932. Willi, a Jewish detective, is on the case of a dead woman who had her legs mutilated. I love historical mysteries, and this one did not fail to bring edge of the seat action. Since this is a mystery, I will not say more. I do not want to spoil the story for anyone.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
I received a copy of A RUSH OF WINGS by Kristen Heitzmann from Bethany House. The cover deeply intrigued me. It displays birds flying across a red-gold sky above luscious mountains with a girl’s pensive face above – the perfect way to describe the novel. The setting involves those glorious Rocky Mountains in Colorado where the girl, Noelle, flees. Noelle seeks to leave behind her ex-fiancé, Michael, in New York City, subsequently abandoning her father in the process. Taking cash so as not to use her credit cards and be followed, Noelle ends up on a horse ranch in the mountains. The owner, Rick Spencer, allows her to help with the horses, and his brother, Morgan, tries to woo her. She finds friendship with both, as well as inspiration in her surroundings to watercolor. She sells the painting in the town and is thrilled to be able to make money for herself. Around the ranch, she also learns how to cook in the kitchen, taught by Marta, a kind woman who is also a little prickly around the edges at times. After an accident, Rick and Noelle grow closer. At Christmastime, he asks her to marry him, and she accepts despite the memories she has of Michael’s cruelness. Through Rick, she learns how to trust God and deal with her tumultuous past. Noelle finds romance, freedom, and a love for God.
Friday, November 5, 2010
I received a copy of HATTERAS GIRL by Alice J. Wisler from Bethany House. I was slightly put off by the cover – a large pair of sand-encrusted feet is not my idea of a good time, but maybe it is for someone who loves the beach. The book, however, was entertaining. I read it in one day while listening to the rain drum against the roof. The story involves Jackie Donovan and her dream of owning a bed and breakfast. Growing up, she and her best friend Minnie visited the Bailey House in their hometown often. Both always wanted to run it. Now, Jackie works for a magazine and widowed Minnie has two jobs in order to support her son. During an interview for the magazine, Jackie meets the current owner of the Bailey House, who happens to be the grandson of the original owners. He agrees to rent it to her and Jackie begins to hold romantic feelings for him. Things go downhill when Jackie realizes he has not kept the house up to safe standards, and that he has another girlfriend. A man she has known her entire life as one of her brother’s friends agrees to help her restore the house and, at the end of the book, asks her to become romantically involved with him. The novel contained love and excitement, but many moments dragged. The author provided too much information about minor characters that rarely held a place in the book, other than to prod the main characters along. There were also touching moments, such as when Minnie’s mother died and she remembered her husband’s tragic boating death. The families in the story were very strong and inspirational.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
DON’T SING AT THE TABLE: LIFE LESSONS FROM MY GRANDMOTHERS by Adriana Trigiani is the perfect book to curl up with beside a roaring fire. I was thrilled to win a copy from HarperCollins and Goodreads. I am very close to my grandmother and love hearing her childhood tales while looking through her old photographs. This story lent me the same cozy feeling. Each page involves a different story about the author’s grandmothers, including black and white photographs. The two women, Lucy and Viola, are strong individuals, perfect role models for any woman.