Saturday, February 23, 2008

Review - The Judas Strain by James Rollins

Title - The Judas Strain
Author- James Rollins
ISBN- 978-0-06-076389-3
No. of Pages 447
Rating 4 out of 5

A terrible plague has arisen out of the depths of the Indian Ocean, a disease that is unknown, unstoppable, and deadly to humankind. A cruise liner which has been converted to a make shift hospital which Dr. Lisa Cummings and other Sigma operatives search for answers to the deadly affliction has been pirated by terrorists.

On the other side of the world Gray Pierce thwarts the schemes of a murderous assassin- a killer who holds the first clue to the discovery of a possible cure. Time is an enemy as Pierce and an unlikely ally are drawn into an astonishing mystery hidden deep in antiquity and in humanity’s genetic code.

James Rollins returns with another high-octane thriller. The story is fast paced keeping the reader turning the pages to find out what happens next. Rollins blends science and history in such a way that makes the story flow, intrigues the reader and provides non-stop adventure. I enjoyed this book very much and I highly recommend it to those who enjoy action-packed thrillers.

Review - Voices by Arnaldur Indridason

Title – Voices
Author – Arnaldur Indridason
ISBN – 978-0-099-49417-1
No of Pages - 352
Rating 5 out of 5

A few days before Christmas a doorman and occasional Santa Claus is found murdered in his Reykjavik hotel room. He has been stabbed to death and left in a sexually compromising position. As detective Erlendur investigates he quickly finds that both staff and guests have something to hide, but it is apparent that it is the dead man who has the most shocking secret.

Once again Indridason has written an outstanding novel that takes place in Iceland. His story is brim full of well-developed characters to which the reader is either drawn to and empathises with or feels appalled by. The plot is intricate and well paced to keep the reader turning the pages. As a bonus we are treated to Icelandic culture. I highly recommend this book and look forward to reading the next book in this series.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Review - Calling The Dead by Marilyn Meredith

ISBN 1-59426-352-3
No. of Pages 154
Rating 3 out of 5

Tempe Crabtree, a resident deputy of Bear Creek, finds herself investigating a murder that looks like death from natural causes, and a suicide that looks like murder. As Tempe, who has been told by her superiors to stay away from the cases, investigates on her own time, she uses Native American ritual to help find out the truth, an act which put her own marriage to a Christian minister in jeopardy.

Once again Marilyn Meredith provides the reader with insight into Native American beliefs and culture. In Tempe Crabtree, we see the struggles of a woman trying to honour her own culture and the clashes between her beliefs and those of her husband. We also gain insight into the difficultes women in law enforcement face from male colleagues. I look forward to more stories involving Tempe and look forward to more complex plots.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Review -First Drop by Zoe Sharp

ISBN 0-7499-3457-3
No. of pages 372
Rating 4.25 out 5

Charlie was not too pleased that her first job in her new career as a bodyguard would be protecting a sullen 15 year old son of a rich computer programmer. It seemed an easy task until someone takes a shot at him at an amusement park and later tries to snatch him. Whoever wants the boy is prepared to kill anyone who gets in the way. As the body count rises Charlie needs all the skill and courage she has to keep the boy and herself safe.

This fast paced novel is filled with twists and turns that will keep the reader turning the pages and guessing who the killer is. The characters are well developed and the plot is well constructed and executed. This is a great thriller and I highly recommend it.

Review - The Black Widow Agency by Felicia Donovan

ISBN 978-0-7387-1082-2
No. of Pages 222

Rating 3.5 out of 5

The Black Widow Agency was formed by four women to bring justice to women who have been wronged by the judicial system. When a client who was drugged, framed, fired, lost her job and custody of her child appeals for help, the four friends come to her aid using computer forensics, surveillance technology and women's intuition.

When I first received the book I wasn't sure if I would like the book. I was concerned that it would be a male bashing forum. To my surprise I found a well written story with four characters who were interesting and likeable. Ms Donovan's experience in law enforcement technology made the technological aspects of the story realistic. I look forward to reading her next novel and to learning more about each of the four members of the Black Widow agency.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Review - The Shape Shifter by Tony Hillerman

Title - The Shape Shifter
Author - Tony Hillerman
ISBN - 978-0-06-056347-9
No. of Pages - 322
Rating - 4.25 out of 5

As former Navajo Tribal Police Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn struggles to come to terms with retirement and loneliness he receives, from a former colleague, a copy of a recent magazine photograph of a priceless old Navajo rug that was supposedly destroyed in a fire many years before. As Leaphorn tracks down the origin of the photograph the trail winds through the rough terrain of greed, deceit, and murder where a cold-blooded killer lies in wait.

Hillerman has once again written a fine mystery. His ability to blend Navajo lore with a very satisfying plot held my attention right through to a satisfying and surprising conclusion. I was struck by the way Hillerman enabled the reader to get inside the mind of Joe Leaphorn and feel his struggles with retirement, the loss of his wife, and his own ethical decision making. The Shape Shifter is an excellent read and I highly recommend it.