General

Book Review: Celebrity In Death by JD Robb

From GoodReads: Lieutenant Eve Dallas is no party girl, but she’s managing to have a reasonably good time at the celebrity-packed bash  celebrating “The Icove Agenda,” a film based on one of her famous cases. It’s a little spooky seeing the actress playing her, who looks almost like her long-lost twin. Not as unsettling, though, as seeing the actress who plays Peabody drowned in the lap pool on the roof of the director’s luxury building. Now she’s at the center of a crime scene-and Eve is more than ready to get out of her high heels and strap on her holster and step into the role she was born to play: cop.

IMO, Celebrity In Death is as enjoyable as all the other In Death books. Slower paced – there is a dearth of stabbings, shootings, chase scenes and other mayhem. There is no drama between Eve and Roark (I do so enjoy the drama.) Still fun to read though. It’s quite a bit funnier than previous books.

The murder victim in not very sympathetic at all. Her death is unsettling, because she’s looks so much like Peabody and it’s like a preview of what Peabody would like in death. Unsettling, but not really sympathetic because the victim is mean and no one likes her. (She basically tells Peabody she is a weak, pathetic cop. Which Peabody isn’t. Very insulting. I am insulted on Peabody’s behalf.)

Still. She is murdered, to celebrate the movie made from a previous case, and Eve investigates. She talks to people, figures out timelines, the placement of everyone who had reason to want the actress dead. Nora Roberts throws out the usual red herrings, nothing major there.

For someone like me, who has read all of the previous books, there are no earth shattering revelations. It’s a good fun read. That’s enough.

General

Discovered the British cop show called Luther

 

Luther is a British cop show Wiswell recommended to me on Twitter.

I’ve only watched the first episode, but I loved it. The actor’s accents are delicious. He’s got anger-management issues, he steps over the law sometimes, but they keep him on because he’s so good at his job.

There are hints he did something illegal to a criminal at the beginning, but he gets reinstated.

The detective’s marriage is ending, because he couldn’t separate his personal life and police life. The wife got tired of him thinking about work even when he’s with her; the new man in her life is with her when he’s with her.

I feel sorry for them both, but I have little sympathy for her. She knew he was a cop when she married him, she had to know how obsessive he could be about work. Deciding later she can’t live with that is just silly. But probably realistic. Also, dramatic. Very, door-destroying dramatic.

The villain is very villain-like, pretty, psychopathy and murderous. I am sure she was always pretty and a psychopath, but I think the murdering thing probably came later.

She killed her parents. At the end, they show her in a hospital, watching some guy in a hospital bed. You have to wonder if she put him in the hospital or is going to do something to him. She’s fascinating. Hypnotic, even. One episode is not enough to judge (a reason to watch more episodes!), but I suspect they will slowly add to her character arc.

I think maybe the show’s overall arc will come from this and the detective’s story.

He never arrests her; she doesn’t leave behind any evidence.

So  . . . unlike a lot of cop shows, where the cop wins because they’re smart and law-abiding, Luther stops her by a spot of breaking & entering. He throws the pot of her dog’s ashes into the river and is all: this is what I’ll do to you if you go after my wife again. (The ashes have the trophy psychopaths are always supposed to need of their murders.)

I will admit, that’s not the ending I was expecting. Even if they weren’t going to arrest her in the first episode, I still expected something else. Something less likely to have the trial thrown out on its ear. Makes me wonder if she’ll live to have a trial.

 

Book Review · fantasy · reading

Book Review: Fair Game by Patricia Briggs

From Amazon:

They say opposites attract. And in the case of werewolves Anna Latham and Charles Cornick, they mate. The son-and enforcer-of the leader of the North American werewolves, Charles is a dominant alpha. While Anna, an omega, has the rare ability to calm others of her kind.

Now that the werewolves have revealed themselves to humans, they can’t afford any bad publicity. Infractions that could have been overlooked in the past must now be punished, and the strain of doing his father’s dirty work is taking a toll on Charles.

Nevertheless, Charles and Anna are sent to Boston, when the FBI requests the pack’s help on a local serial killer case. They quickly realize that not only the last two victims were werewolves-all of them were. Someone is targeting their kind. And now Anna and Charles have put themselves right in the killer’s sights…

I loved loved loved Fair Game.

There is a murder investigation; Charles has serious issues with guilt over being his father’s henchman. Anna is worried about him and somehow ends up speaking with the humans about the murders, with Charles as her bodyguard.

The story is fast and tense and leaves you wanting to know what happens next.

What I liked best: the ending. It was spectacular. The legal court provides a silly (and predictable lol) ruling regarding the fae. A fae lord retaliates. His actions strike me as quite just. I think the schism is going to be permanent and provides for very interesting times ahead.

There are lots of other goods parts. Watching Anna confront the Marok? Fantastic. I mean, no one confronts him.

Charles has a lot of issues in this book. It’s been building and I suppose it’s only natural. One of the werewolves he killed kind of had it coming, but someone else made it sound like he didn’t. Charles fell for it, until yet another werewolf pointed that the punishment would have been the same even before the werewolves came out to the public. It was hard for Charles to see that.

What I don’t understand: Throughout the book, Anna kept telling everyone all the weakness of werewolves. Why? There was no need for her to reveal half as much as she did and I still don’t get why she did it. She told the agents how to behave around Charles and made him sound out of control, which he isn’t. Close to edge, yeah, but still in control.

reading · Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesday: Grave Dance

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My teaser:

I raised shades, got some answers, and then cashed the check. That was the kind of investigator I was. I didn’t hit the street and search for suspects in a murder case.

– Grave Dance by Kalayna Price

Book Review · fantasy

Book Review: License to Ensorcell by Katharine Kerr

So after a really long departure from this blog, I am back. (Life got in the way, work, sickness, death in the family, that sort of thing. At least it’s not snowing.) I am starting again with a book review.

Blurb from Amazon: Psychic Agent Nola O’Grady isn’t sure returning to San Francisco, and living near her unusual family, is a good idea. Her job, with a psychic agency so obscure even the CIA doesn’t know it exists, can be perilous, and she’s afraid of the relatives getting involved.

Then the Agency saddles her with Israeli secret agent Ari Nathan, and she has a bigger problem on her hands, because tact and compromise are not Ari’s strong points. Their mission is to track down a serial killer obsessed with werewolves. He sees them everywhere and shoots whenever he thinks he has one in his sights. Ari assumes the man’s psychotic, but in truth he’s murdering actual werewolves. Nola should know. Her younger brother Pat, a lycanthrope, was the first victim.

Can Nola’s psychic talents and Ari’s skill with guns keep them alive long enough to unravel the greater mystery behind the killings? Can they save the werewolves and the world while stopping Nola’s family from running headlong into danger?

I’ve read quite a few of other Katharine Kerr books and when I saw she was coming out with an urban fantasy, I was ecstatic. The title is interesting. It sounds almost like license to kill, which reminds of James Bond movies. The concept is interesting, too, what with secret government agencies, psychics, werewolves and serial killers. Unfortunately License to Ensorcell is not up to her usual standards. I am not sure what went wrong; her other books are pretty damn good.

One of the things I really, really disliked was all the “Search Mode: General”, “Search Mode: Chaos” and “Search Mode: Danger”. WTH? I can’t remember the last time a published writer did that. It reads like something out of an RPG game (games I don’t play!). It takes me out of the story and I realize most of the prose is pretty damn awkward. Or the story feels very forced, as though the writer doesn’t actually want to write this. About the only thing that doesn’t feel awkward is when the two main characters interact. That do that lots of times. I found myself skimming past all the awkwardness, and, sadly, that’s a good chunk of the book.

The other thing I found really unbelievable is the male character. When he’s introduced, he’s all psychics aren’t real. Werewolves aren’t real. Main character is a nutter. He starts believing in all that, does a 180 so fast, I am left staring at the page. He has proof of nothing, yet he believes on the say so of someone he called a nutter.

Anyway, the book’s concept is interesting. Everything else? Picture me shrugging. I won’t read the next book in this series, but I will still read her other books.