Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Risk It All by Stan Stamper

Carissa Johnson is working undercover for the CIA. She is helping to find out how money is funneled for al Qaida and Hamas. She has meetings with several high officials in some Middle East countries. She has a very good relationship with one of the leaders, the other wants her to become his mistress. Carissa goes home when her Grand Anna passes away to be with her Grandpa Hank. While there they decide to put an engine in the plane they are restoring. Tanner Stone and his father bring the engine and Tanner and Carissa hit it off. When Special Forces Commander Tanner returns to his unit he is told that an American is aiding enemies to launder money. Everything Tanner finds leads to Carissa but he just can't believe she is involved in treason. Even though he has asked Carissa to marry him, Tanner has doubts about her innocence. Tanner along with a Congressional delegation are captured and it's Carissa who can pinpoint where they are.

This book is a true page turner. Enjoyed the story from beginning to end it flowed effortlessly. Both Carissa and Tanner are strong characters and blended well together. There was just enough chemistry between them to make the story interesting. Loved the characters of her Grandpa Hank and Tanner's father Mouse. The President's mother Emma Grace was quite a character, too.They had their own special relationship. The cover is nice, not sure it really relates to the story though. For those who like political suspense this book is worth reading.

Fallen by Karin Slaughter

Faith Mitchell's mother has been kidnapped. Evelyn Mitchell, retired from the police force when several of her officer's were charged with stealing some of the drug money they got in raids. Evelyn was investigated but there was no evidence that she was involved. Faith returns home to find her mother missing and her daughter locked in a shed. Faith kills two men she finds at her mother's house and is looked at as a suspect in the beginning. Her partner Will Trent is there to help her find out what is going on. Will along with their boss Amanda Wagner begin questioning people in the drug trade to see if someone they know has Evelyn. Faith is friends with Dr. Sara Linton. Sara was the county coroner in the town where she and her husband lived. Jeffrey was a police chief and was killed in the line of duty. Sara decided to move to Atlanta and work at the hospital there. Will and Amanda ask Sara to look at the dead bodies and tell them what she thinks. During the investigation Will and Sara become close. Will and Faith have no idea what will be uncovered but Amanda knows more than she is saying.

Excellent book by Karin Slaughter. I am a big fan of her books anyway and this one did not disappoint. Although the book was mainly about Faith and Will it was so nice to read about the things happening in Sara's life now. Faith is a sympathetic character in what is learned about her home life and relationship with her mother and brother. She knows her job and is willing to do anything to get her mother back. Will's home life is examined too and a lot of his issues are revealed. Both Faith and Will might not seem to be strong characters in the beginning but they are by the end of the book. Cover of the book is very nice. An excellent read for anyone who likes suspsense.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Seduced by Destiny by Kira Morgan

Josselin Ancrum has been taught to fight by her three fathers. She wants to avenge her mother's death at the hands of the English. Drew MacAdam is in Scotland to play golf. He too was taught by his three uncles to fight. They wanted him to be a better warrior than his father. Drew was like his father in that he did not want to fight, he wanted to take the Scot's money instead. Jossy goes to see Queen Mary when she returns to Scotland. Watching the procession Drew comes to her aid. They strike up a tenuous friendship that leads to more. Jossy winds up as a spy for the Queen and each of them try to keep the other safe. But there is something that Jossy doesn't know about Drew that could mean his life.

Good story, with twists throughout the book. Jossy is a strong woman who likes to take care of herself and doesn't want any help from Drew. Yet she is drawn to him and discovers feelings she never had before. Drew wants to keep Jossy safe and if that means using his sword he will. He is not a fighter and only learned because his uncles pressured him. Lots of clever by play between the main characters and some sexual tension in the beginning. Good use of history in the story and a few memorable minor characters. Cover is very nice and definitely fits the storyline. Historical romance that is sure to please those who enjoy this genre.

Friday, May 6, 2011

And the Beat Goes On by Tracy L. Krauss

Dr. Mark Graham and his team are doing an archeological dig in Zimbabwe. All kinds of things seem to go wrong from missing artifacts to lost pictures to a cave in. Mark is arrested for violations of the agreement with the government and lax safety on the site. Now Mark does not know who to trust with his findings. It seems his best friend and also his lover are out to derail him. He is let go from the university and told he can not announce his findings. But one of the others from the dig, Anthony gets a college in Texas to back Mark and agree to let him have his say. While at home Mark become acquainted with Amy who he used to babysit but has now grown up. She is a Christian and Mark is questioning his faith. While Mark says he loves her, Amy tells him that she needs to distance herself and give herself time to explore the world.

Interesting read in which evolution and God's creation are debated. From a fictional point of view it shows how mainstream culture would do anything to disprove the Bible and God's handiwork. Mark struggles with the scientist side of himself while also trying to come to terms with what he was taught as a child in church. Some good minor characters thrown in including a sister that Mark never knew he had. I think the cover did fit the book well. Very worthwhile read, enjoyed it very much.

Recovery by Alexandrea Weis

David Alexander is dead and Nicci has to learn to live without her love. To do this she decides to write a book about their relationship. While in New York for a book signing Nicci is contacted by Simon La Roy. He was David's boss for many years when David worked as a spy. He tells Nicci that he wants to find out who killed David because the police are not getting the job done. He thinks that it was someone close to Nicci. She agrees to let Dallas August come home with her and act like her new boyfriend, so he can sniff around her friends and try to solve the case. They don't fool everyone and they finally have to tell Nicci's father and uncle what they are up to. Both of them say they will help in any way they can but they want Nicci kept safe.

One of the best books I have read in awhile. This one had everything from suspense to a little romance and quirky minor characters that you came to love. Nicci, though struggling with the death of David, opens herself to a new love. Strong in her resolve to find his killer though and willing to do anything to help. Dallas is not looking for romance and just wants to find his friend's killer but he was half in love with Nicci before they even met. Aunt Hattie and cousin Colleen provide the levity that the book needed, they are very enjoyable characters. Love the cover of the book, very New Orleans. Highly recommend this book for anyone who loves a good mystery.

Notorious Pleasures by Elizabeth Hoyt

Lady Hero Batten is engaged to be married to the Marquis of Mandeville. On the night of the announcement Hero walks in on her future brother in law in a compromising position. From that point on she decides that Griffin is not worth the effort to get to know or even like. Circumstances though bring the two into close proximity on more than one occasion. Hero can not help developing feelings for Griffin and tries her best to ignore them. But Griffin will not let her and they succumb to passion. Hero then has to confess to her fiance of her waywardness. He is furious with her as he thinks his first wife had an affair with his brother. In the meantime, Hero's brother wants nothing less than to put Griffin in jail. He also tells Hero that no matter what she will marry the Marquis, who himself has feelings for someone else.

Loved the character of Hero. She is strong, kind, compassionate and will do what she thinks needs to be done. Her sponsorship of the children's home in a bad neighborhood is what really brings her and Griffin together. Griffin is also a strong character who did what he had to do to take care of his family after his father died and left them with little money and does not care what anyone thinks of him until Hero comes into his life. Hero and Griffin play very well off of each other, the combination of the love hate relationship is very entertaining. The cover is very appropriate for the book. Anyone who likes period romances will really enjoy this book.

Treasure Me by Robyn DeHart

Vanessa Pembrooke walks in on her sister and her fiance making love two days before her wedding. Even though Vanessa was not in love, she had picked her fiance because of similar interests. She did not want a relationship based on love and thought the concept was foolish. Not wanting to stay around and be pitied Vanessa takes what little money she has and heads to Scotland. She has always wanted to be a scientist, and decides this is a good time to make her dream come true. Looking to prove the existence of the Loch Ness monster, Vanessa becomes the unwitting bride of Graeme Langford. Graeme is in Scotland to find the Stone of Destiny before in falls into the hands of the wrong people. Vanessa decides to help her husband in his quest, although her husband is not so keen on Vanessa tagging along. With an attempted murder on Vanessa's life, Graeme has no choice but to keep her close to him.

Very easy and fast read. The storyline just flowed and kept you turning pages to see what was going to happen to Vanessa and Graeme. Wonderful chemistry between the two, especially since neither one was looking for a relationship. Dialogue really helped the story along and there were a couple of good minor characters. Dougal, Graeme's brother and also his mother we assets to the storyline. The Raven you just wanted to dislike from the very beginning. All in all a very good period book and anyone who likes that genre will enjoy.

Midnight Caller by Leslie Tentler

Rain Sommer's is a psychologist who has a late night talk show. It's geared to young people who need help dealing with everyday issues. However, there is a killer in New Orleans and he calls Rain's show. Trevor Rivette is an FBI agent sent to New Orleans to help with the case. It seems the killer likes to leave things for Rivette to find. Trevor is not happy about being home again. He has his own demons to face. He and Rain are thrown together because of the investigation. Trevor sits in at the radio station and listens to Rain's show waiting for the killer to call her again. Both of them want this person found before he kills again and will do what needs to be done to catch him.

This book is set after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, so there are a lot of references to what devastation there still was in the city. Between the radio show and her interaction with her patients Rain is trying to get out from under her late mother's shadow. While she is dealing with those issues Trevor is also dealing with facing his father again and renewing a relationship with his siblings. There are different phases of the story rolled into one in this book. They all work well together to push the story forward. This book turned out to be a real page turner. It had just the right amount of suspense and romance. The cover does fit the storyline and I would recommend this book highly.

Deadly Lies by Cynthia Eden

Samantha Kennedy is an FBI agent working a case of young men being tortured and killed. Her superiors are not sure she is ready for field work and order her back to the office. Sam, however, has met Max Ridgeway and they have begun a tenuous relationship. While they are together Max finds out that his brother has been kidnapped. He is told not to involve the police, but he does not know what Sam does for a living. When he finds out he is furious and thinks she has jeopardized his brother's life. Sam will not give up and stays with Max throughout the time his brother is missing. She helps run the investigation from inside one of the victims homes. No one around them is who they seem. Little does she know what she will find out in the course of the case.

Mystery and suspense at it's best with some steamy scenes thrown in for good luck. Really good story and liked reading about characters that I had read in the last book. Samantha fights inner demons through the whole book trying to show everyone that she can do her job. Max is a very strong man who does not like to be told what he can and can not do. They throw sparks off each other constantly, but through it all keep their eye on what they are doing. The cover is nice, not sure if it enhances the storyline though. Very good read for mystery lovers.