"Very enjoyable story with very likable characters. Emma is a woman you can easily relate to as she deals with the daily life issues of her job, love and friends. After she picks herself up from the indignity of being tossed aside by her bastard of a boyfriend, she relies on her friends to take her in and help her cope with the betrayal not only in her love life but also on the job as she is denied an opportunity she is perfect for. Add into the mix that her father is one of the top plastic surgeons in the area, Emma is continuously reminded of everytime she looks in the mirror and sees her completely inadequate 32AA chest.
Join Emma as she navigates through her life looking to fill her days (and hopefully a bikini) with the happiness she longs for."
"With 50 Ways To Hex Your Lover, new to me author Linda Wisdom introduces her series starring a feisty witch named Jazz and a vampire named Nick who have been in an on then off relationship for several hundred years. Unfortunately, most of it has not been good and the last time Jazz and Nick were together several decades ago, he had her arrested. Understandably, Jazz is a tad cranky when she and Nick cross paths. He is definitely the last person, dead or alive, she wants to deal with and I was given a very good idea just how angry she is with him when she conjures up fire balls and wooden stakes ready to end his existence mere seconds after laying eyes on him again. Jazz doesn't need any more trouble. Her temper and bad behavior have gotten her in trouble with the Witches Council and she was banished so she is trying to walk the straight and narrow. I was very intrigued to say the least.
Fortunately for the future of this story, Nick doesn't give up so easily and continues to try to persuade her to help him track down who is responsible for several vampires going missing. I liked Nick and his persistence. I liked that he and Jazz have an extensive history and they always manage to find their way back to one another. Jazz has a lot on her plate already and the last thing she wants is Nick back in her life. In addition to hiring her witchy services out to disarm curses and her job as a driver for a limousine company she has to deal with Irma, a chain smoking nag of a ghost, who haunts Jazz's T-Bird, her ghoul boss, Dweezil, who walks a very fine line between good and evil and her carnivorous bunny slippers, just to name a few. On top of that, her boss insists she is the only one who can drive his best customer (because he pays in gold bars), who also emits an odor so noxious that Jazz has to throw away the clothing she wears when she drives him. For Jazz, having Nick show up again after all these years is like the final straw for her. Of course, Jazz eventually agrees to help him, especially when she discovers that the most evil and foulest of creatures she thought had been destroyed in the ‘30s is actually still around.
I would have liked a little more background history with Jazz (and whatever names she used throughout the years) and Nick. How they met, more detail about her banishment and the relationships with her sister witches Stasi and Blair, how Nick became a vampire and his history with the Protectorate. There were a lot of references and inferences to these issues and a lot of jumping back and forth between past and present, but it left me with more questions that pulled me out of the story many times. Even still, these issues did not keep me from wanting to know more and connecting with the characters.
My Final Verdict: Overall, this was a good start to a series that has three more books and one short story. Jazz and Nick will return in the next book, Hex Appeal and Stasi and Blair will each get their story. I am hopeful more will be revealed and explained as we go forward. If you like your vampire heroes to be hot and your witch heroines to be smart, feisty and full of snarky attitude, with vibrant supporting characters throughout that threaten to take over the whole story, then I recommend 50 Ways To Hex Your Lover as a good place to start."
"I keep thinking that this will be the last installment of "The Women's Murder Club" series that I will read as I have assumed, incorrectly, that Patterson can't take these characters any further without them becoming redundant. I love to be surprised and Patterson doesn't dissapoint as, once again, I am pleasantly surprised at what Lindsay, Claire, Yuki and Cindy find themselves thrust into.
I enjoyed the developing attraction between Lindsay and Conklin initially, but I am glad to see Patterson take it in a different direction; besides, I love Joe and have been rooting for them for a very long time. I've also wanted to see Cindy in a more central role and with this book, I get my wish as she not only gets a relationship but also plays an active position in one of the murder cases. Yuki seems to be at odds in her career and her personal life, but I am hopeful that Patterson will turn that around. Claire is always great as the glue that holds the group together with her common sense and logic.
The cases were riveting and kept me on the edge of my seat trying to figure out whodunit. I am back to being deeply addicted to this series and eagerly looking forward to #9."
"With the 9th installment of the Women's Murder Club, I feel pretty well connected to the characters, having gotten to know them over the last nine books. I love them all equally, but hats off go to Claire as the one in the group who really stood out for me in this book. She's very direct and isn't afraid to speak her mind. I don't want to give anything away, but the last chapter of the book was so much better, thanks to Claire.
Lindsay has two very high profile murder cases in this book. First up is Hello Kitty, so named by Cindy. Kitty is a cat burglar, a very successful cat burglar I might add, but her job at famous movie star, Marcus Dowling's house ends with a murder that Kitty did not commit. The second is the Lipstick Killer, so named because he guns down women and children and then leaves his calling card in lipstick on the victim's windshield. Unfortunately, the powers that be at SFPD feel the Marcus Dowling case is more important and demands Lindsay devote all her attention to this one instead of the other one. Lindsay soon learns that working one will bring her closer to the other one.
As the layers of both cases are peeled back, Lindsay finds herself trying to stay one step ahead of a woman and child hating sadistic killer and an elusive cat burglar torn between risking her freedom by coming forward to set the record straight or doing just one more job that will ensure her financial security and freedom.
I really loved how the story played out but I do have a few grievances. First of all, Lindsay and Joe are still together and still engaged. I really don't understand and definitely don't like where Patterson is going with Lindsay's attraction to her partner, Rich Conklin. Rich has just started a relationship with Cindy and I would love to see where that leads. I think Lindsay and Joe make an excellent couple and I want them to stay together. Mr. Patterson, please stop stirring the pot of deception. If Lindsay cheats on Joe with Rich, she will lose Joe and Cindy and Mr. Patterson will lose me as a fan. I get that adultery is a plot device that elevates tension in the story, but I can't stand it, especially when it's the story's protagonist who does it.
Secondly, the entire epilogue was cold-blooded and I felt didn't need to be included in the story. It had no bearing on the story or anything that had happened. It left more questions at the end than answers, especially regarding Lindsay's career and position at SFPD. James Patterson usually does an excellent job of tying up loose ends and ripping the rug out from under me with some of the plot twists and turns, so I really didn't understand the need for this epilogue. If the epilogue puts to rest any of the confusing feelings Lindsay is having for Rich, then all is forgiven, but I don't think it will. So, unfortunately, I am not rating this book as high as I would, because the epilogue really pulled me out of the story and left me without any closure. I am anticipating the 10th book with the hopes that there will be some tying up of the loose ends. Overall, I am still a fan of this series and look forward to what Lindsay, Claire, Cindy and Yuki face next."
"Started out slow and a little dull but picked up at the 100 page mark where I would normally give up and move on.
I really enjoyed Shari's trip to London and Abbey Road. :o) The supporting characters were very interesting as well. I thought things were left hanging with Shari's mother and Owen's father and unfortunately Owen really didn't develop into a three dimensional character. Shari's Aunt Dot was entertaining as well as the scenes involving the funeral of the skunk."
"The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein was recommended to me by a very good friend and is nothing at all like the books I normally read. For starters, the narrator of the book is a dog named Enzo and the story is told entirely from his perspective. It's given me a whole new insight on animals and what they are really thinking and how they feel and the fact that they understand so much more than we give them credit for.
The story begins on the eve of Enzo's death. He's an old dog, you see, and as we all have done and will do, he's reflecting back on his life with his master, Denny, a race car driver and his family. Enzo's view of the world is very funny and thought provoking. Enzo shares with us his love of television and watching car races as well as a documentary that people in Mongolia believe when a dog passes from this life, he will be reincarnated as a human. Enzo is very clear that his ultimate dream is to come back as a man, find Denny and shake his hand.
Through Enzo's eyes, we are introduced to Denny's future wife, Eve and meet their daughter Zoe. With Enzo's help, I learned more about racing cars than I ever did. Most importantly, we learn from Enzo exactly how loyal a dog is to his pack master and the love he feels for his entire pack. When Denny faces the ultimate adversity, we see it through Enzo's eyes and feel his helplessness that he can't fix it. You can't help but love Enzo. While reading this book, I wished he were with me several times so I could hug him.
This book will make you smile, laugh and cry. This book will make you angry (I absolutely hated the twins and if I had been Enzo, I would have bit them). For me, only a book that truly speaks to my heart is capable of bringing out so many emotions when I read it and The Art of Racing in the Rain did that and more. Get this book, but don't just read it...savor it. Life is short and Enzo showed me how important it is to make every moment count."
"This was an OK story but I expected a much more explosive ending that Grisham has been known to deliver in the past. Grisham does a good job of laying the groundwork and drawing the reader into Kyle's world giving us a bird's eye view into the mess Kyle has found himself as well as the intense pressure of trying to out maneuver the bad guys and come out on top. I'm not sure what happened, but this book, though is a decent story had the potential to be so much more."
"So often, a series begins to get stale and redundant by the third book. Happily, that doesn't seem to be the case with this series and if this book is any indicator, it won't. My failure to read this book sooner is why there was so much confusion when I read "First Drop of Crimson" in January. Now that I have rectified that situation, I can happily report that this At Grave's End was well worth the wait! I cannot gush enough about how much I love Cat and Bones. As a couple and individually, these two characters sure know how to get the job done.
This story really opens up more of the Night Huntress world that I wasn't aware of. We get to see more about Cat's father, Max and what a truly deviated and pitiful excuse of a former human he truly was. We get to see more of Cat's mom and there are some interesting twists and surprises with Justina that I thoroughly enjoyed reading. We see one of Cat's men, Tate, getting more of a storyline and so far, I am enjoying the triangle his character is trying to create with Cat and Bones. I definitely see potential there for Tate to get his own book.
I know if I decided to leave my current career path and become a vampire slayer, then Cat is the one I would want to mentor and train me. This series and in particular, this book, delivers everything I look for and want in my reading selections. In addition to the intense action and fighting scenes, there's humor and even some very heart wrenching sad moments.
I can't think of one thing in this book that didn't work for me so instead I will say if you haven't yet read this series, get off your tush and get started. You'll be glad you did."
"In the romance genre, time travel and paranormal themes rate very high for me and I usually can't get enough of them. I liked this story but unfortunately it took way too long to read and too many distractions pulling me out of the story. When that happens, I give up on the story and move on. Since it took me a month to get this book read, I probably should have done that. Instead, I stuck with it and ended up enjoying the story for the most part.
I liked Bree and Faelan but didn't LOVE them. I actually liked Ronan more and wished he had made an appearance in the story sooner. Hopefully he will get his own story. I really liked Conall too.
There were several "I can't believe she did that" moments with Bree that put her safety at risk. I can certainly see why Faelan felt like she needed a protector because she had no difficulty putting herself in danger on her own! Personally, I felt that she needed a babysitter. I was quite surprised she didn't suffer more serious injury than the few bruises and scrapes she did.
There were too many of the "big misunderstandings" between Bree and Faelan for my liking. Bree assumes he doesn't want her and is sleeping with someone else so she misunderstands why Faelan wants her to leave and Faelan doesn't do a very good job of explaining why either. Faelan jumps to the mother of wrong conclusions when he sees what he assumes is Bree in bed with the demon he has been trying to destroy and assumes Bree is a half-ling (half demon and half human) and he's ready to plan her demise as well until he is reminded that demons don't deal in truth.
The nice thing about this book is the introduction of many of the other warriors in Faelan's clan that may have their own story later on in this series. So, while I wasn't completely in love with this book or the characters, I liked the story and am intrigued in this series and what happens next."
"Initially, the story started out pretty good. It held a lot of promise as I was introduced to two characters that know what they want in life and were fortunate to find their common interests, desires and goals in each other. Unfortunately, this story can never have a happily ever after. So, there really isn't anything to like about this story. As soon as Ben changed his mind about not wanting children, he began to try to manipulate Claudia into changing hers by constantly bringing up the subject. For Claudia, that just increased the stress and tension. She hopes that Ben changing his mind is just a phase. At this point, logic should dictate to one or both of them that their marriage is in serious trouble and they should have gone to a counselor. Instead, they quit communicating, except to fight about having a baby, and from there things get progressively worse. After one particularly ugly evening, Claudia packs her bags and leaves and moves in with her best friend. From there, the impending divorce is just a formality and before I had time to process that they are having serious problems, the divorce is final!
They end up together, obviously, but this book gets the lowest rating because nothing is resolved! Ben still wants children, Claudia doesn't. I'm left asking myself WHY GET BACK TOGETHER? Oh, because you love each other and can't to be apart? That didn't stop you the first time from packing your crap and moving out! That didn't stop you from jumping straight into a divorce! So, I ask myself, what could possibly be gained by getting back together now? Claudia hasn't changed her mind about not wanting children, so if she decides to have them because she doesn't want to lose Ben, then that makes her TOO STUPID TO LIVE. If Ben decides he is willing to live without children because he doesn't want to lose Claudia, then he's giving up his dream to be a father and that's always going to be a source of resentment. It's not like they both decided they wanted children and found out they couldn't and then agreed that living without children to save the marriage any damage from the stress of trying was their next step. On such an important issue as whether or not to have children, how can you expect either one to compromise and have a successful marriage? You compromise on the color you will paint the kitchen or the breed of dog you take in or where you will go on vacation, but never on whether or not to have children.
Nothing about this story ends up working for me. What should have happened is when Ben announces he has changed his mind about children, Claudia should have told him that she hadn't and suggested counseling to help them decide where they would go from there. Then we see them trying to work out this major difference and dealing with the obstacles in their way. Then, either Ben would realize it was just a phase and he really doesn't want children or Claudia would change her mind and her biological clock would begin ticking. Either way, it would have been resolved. Nobody would have had to sacrifice anything by compromising. Win-win!
In addition, I didn't like most of the supporting characters. Claudia's friend having an affair with a married man who obviously will never leave his wife for her and she should be asking herself, what makes her think that a man who will cheat to be with her won't cheat on her? Her name should have been Cleopatra because she is the Queen of Denial. Then there are Claudia's sisters, Maura and Daphne. Maura has the perfect life on the outside. Beautiful children, married to a, hot rich guy, living in a mansion. It's all a fantasy. He's cheating on her and she's too stupid to live because she is putting up with it. She gets a spine near the end of the book and is no longer a doormat, but for how long? Daphne is desperate for children and her inability to have them makes her a basket case. Things work out for her in the end, but I want to know why they weren't trying to adopt all along? I felt like she wasted too much time moaning and boo-hooing about her infertility instead of just looking into adoption sooner. I thought Claudia's dad was OK but her mother is a wacko who I could barely tolerate. Most of these people needed a serious slap upside the head, including Claudia and Ben.
Overall, if you like a story with stupid people making bad decisions and then wondering why their lives aren't turning out the way they planned, then grab this one. Otherwise, steer clear of this one and go for something else."
"When I pick up a James Patterson novel, I am guaranteed to be entertained, sometimes shocked, but always entertained. In Patterson's novels, I almost always find stories filled with very interesting characters; even the villains are intriguing. I can't ignore the fact that they reel me in, regardless of whether I love or hate the character. Patterson's ability to make these characters come to life and leap off the page is very impressive. In Beach Road, he does it again.
Tom Dunleavy is a likeable guy. He's a guy you could be buddies with. After his career with the NBA is sidelined, he becomes a lawyer, though he's not a very prominent lawyer.
Kate Costello is tough as nails. If you are the underdog, you will want her in your corner. She demonstrates a dogged determination to do the right thing; she even walks away from her law firm rather than defend a man she knows is guilty. She is one of those people that will walk through fire for the people she cares for. She used to care for Tom Dunleavy until he broke her heart and she hasn't forgiven him yet.
Dante Halleyville is a young man that bad luck seems to follow. Raised by his grandmother, he struggles to overcome the adversity that has plagued his life and rise above the tragedy that has followed him. He is talented and intelligent and is on his way to a superstar career in the NBA. When he is accused of murder, his life hangs in the balance.
This book is narrated by several points of view. Tom, Kate, Dante and Loco, a local drug dealer, who has a keen sense of what is going on, offer their perceptions on the events surrounding them. Tom and Kate agreed to defend Dante and are convinced he's being set up. Convincing a jury of enough reasonable doubt leaves Tom and Kate with their work cut out for them.
This story was a little slow to get going in the beginning, but it changes direction without warning and takes off at high speed. Suddenly, I am caught in the story watching the events unfold, unable to look away. With every visit Tom and Kate make to Dante in jail, the tension mounts. If Dante is innocent, then the killer is still out there and loose ends will need to be tied up. I found myself worrying about the safety of Dante, Tom and Kate. Defending Dante doesn't sit well with the community and Tom and Kate aren't highly experienced lawyers.
This isn't one of James Patterson's best stories, but Beach Road is a story that will pull you in and rip the rug out from under you. When everything is revealed, I felt like I had been hit by a bus. I was shocked and surprised and that is what Patterson is good at. Fans of James Patterson will enjoy this story knowing they are in for a great ride and readers new to his books will enjoy the suspense and intense twists."
"Definitely not your typical chick-lit that I usually am drawn to. Though there are several witty and entertaining characters, the core of the story deals with the serious issue of date rape and the aftermath. The author does an excellent job of drawing you into Holly's life as she tries to cope with her experience while trying to maintain a sense of normalcy in her life. Though she stumbles along the way, she proves to herself that she is a survivor.
Several sub-plots involving Holly's sisters, parents and friends that I found intriguing as well."
"Christopher Moore does it again! This book is laugh out loud hilarious! Most of the book is told from the point of view of "Abby Normal," a goth Valley Girl, who wants nothing more than to be "Nosferatu" and spend her life being Mistress of the Greater Bay Area Night and going "Raaarrr" to those around her.
When we last left Abby and her manga-haired love monkey, Foo Dog, they had trapped "The Countess and Lord Flood" in bronze statues and were living in the love lair deciding what their next move should be. They quickly learn they have gotten in way over their heads when they discover that Chet is a vampire cat and is quickly turning other cats to the dark side and eating several people along the way. Plus, Jody and Tommy are gonna be REALLY pissed when they get out of the bronze statues. And then there are those ass-hat cops Rivera and Cavuto who are snooping around...seriously, could life get any more sucky?
Sadly, I think this is the last story in the series as this book ties up many loose ends and pretty much cleans house. One can only hope there will be more, but it doesn't feel like it. Do yourself a favor and read this series, starting with BLOODSUCKING FIENDS, followed by YOU SUCK and then BITE ME."
"Dating in the modern world isn't all it's cracked up to be as our heroine, Sarah Dearly finds out when her blind date turns out not only to be a vampire, but bites her and turns her into one of the undead. Then to make matters worse, Sarah's sire is murdered by vampire hunters just mere minutes after she's turned and she has no idea what to do next. Luckily, self-preservation kicks in and Sarah does what any self-respecting woman, undead or alive, would do when faced with imminent violence...she hauls ass out of there. When she comes across 600+ year old vampire Thierry de Bennicoeur preparing to commit suicide, Sarah takes a leap of faith (literally) in the hope that she can convince Thierry that life is worth living and herself that she can continue to live her own life before this minor derailment into the vampire community. Along the way, Sarah meets other vampires, some nice and some she would probably like to stake herself and a vampire hunter who is intent on killing her despite her numerous protests that she isn't evil.
I found this book to be a cute and entertaining story to a series that looks to be very entertaining. I liked Sarah quite a bit. She reminds me of Betsy Taylor from the Undead series by MaryJanice Davidson. If you like that series, you will enjoy this one. Sarah has a lot of attitude and isn't shy about expressing herself. I thought she had a lot of spunk. Even after being fired from her job and no financial windfalls looming on the horizon, Sarah manages to take charge of the situation and plows forward instead of wallowing in self-pity.
I didn't warm up to Thierry, unfortunately. He seemed too stuffy and stuck-up for me. Even though it was quite obvious to me that he was attracted to Sarah, I didn't like that he went out of his way to push her away and wasn't very nice about it. The fact that she stuck around and had his back says more about her and her integrity and compassion, however. I liked Michael Quinn, the vampire hunter who is after Sarah. I was glad to see he turned out to be one of the major characters. I found his personality very likeable. Sarah befriends one of the vampires at Thierry's nightclub named George who I found to be very likeable and funny.
Though the jury is still out on whether I want to see Sarah and Thierry end up together, I am looking forward to reading the second book to find out what happens next."
"I read the second book before reading this one so the sequence of events was a little bit out of order, but still enjoyed this book quite a lot. How Jen and Fletch manage to make it through all the adversity in their lives and come out of it still together provides many hours of entertaining and laugh out loud reading."
"Alot of interesting plot twists greet Rachel and her friends in this installment of the series. Some good and some quite sad and some extremely unwanted and disappointing. The longer the series goes gives me more curiosity to the direction the author will take Rachel and Trent's relationship. In this book, the reader is given a glimpse of their childhood past and, for me, a little bit more understanding of their history. Jenks remains my favorite character in the series with his Tinkerbell expletives that keep me laughing until my sides hurt."
"I've long been fascinated by the unsolved Jack the Ripper murders in 1888 and have my own personal speculation on who Jack was. For the most part, I enjoyed this story that centers around an FBI profiler who is battling her own personal demons trying to solve the murder of her sister several years before. After an especially grueling case, Victoria is all but ordered to take a vacation. She shanghais childhood friend, Trey, and they depart for London to attend a weekend seminar featuring a speaker from Scotland Yard about the unsolved Ripper murders.
For the most part, I enjoyed the story that mixes the historical facts with the growing romance between Victoria and Jonathan Blake. Throw in a Jack the Ripper copycat killer who is murdering women and has chosen Victoria to receive his dark messages and graphic and disturbing gifts. The identity of the modern day Ripper provided a satisfactory closure as well. My problem with this book was instead of ending the story with the killer being captured and Victoria and Jonathan riding off into the sunset, the story continues and goes off the deep end into a conspiracy theory about the 1888 Jack's identity and a bunch of cloak and dagger moments and cover-ups.
I may be in the minority here, but though several theories about Jack's identity make logical sense, I personally feel that there being no resolution is a big part of the appeal of this case. If you can overlook the last chapter, maybe even skip it all together, you may enjoy this story overall."
"With the arrival of Mavis's much anticpated baby and the recruitment of Eve and Roark as unwilling birth coaches, this installment of the In Death series has become my favorite.
Filled with the gritty action and precise, hard-nosed determination Eve demonstrates with every case, this story also brings a lot of light moments and laugh out loud hilarity at the horror Eve and Roark feel facing the birth of Mavis and Leonardo's child. In her typical fashion, Eve manages to solve three homicides and take down a baby selling ring in the process. Surprising that something as minor as the birth of a child could send this tenacious seeker of justice to her knees. I hope this series continues for a very long time and I'm looking forward to the next book with eager excitement and anticipation."