Government drone by day and book lover and geek girl by night!
Yeah I totally didn’t finish posting reviews today, but I got really busy at work and didn’t have the time. I’m at home right now and I’m totally not in the mood for it. Just to give you an idea I have three more books to post reviews on.
They will be the following:
The Thirteenth Tale, Distant Hours, and The Awesome Girl’s Guide To Dating Extraordinary Men, and I did a re-read of A Caribbean Mystery. But for the A Caribbean Mystery I think I’ll just re-blog my review or something. So lazy right now.
Though I know that Hoag has "Ashes to Ashes" as the first Kovac and Liska book. I always thought "Dust to Dust" was the first book in the series. Mainly because we get Kovac and Liska's third person POVs in this one and the last book really focused on John Quinn and Kate Conlan. "Dust to Dust' has Kovac and Liska investigated the death of an IAB officer with ties to a legendary police officer. Though ruled a suicide, both Kovac and Liska believe the officer was murdered. There are ties to an older homicide from decades ago.
I love Kovac and Liska. They bounce off each other very well and you can see why they work as partners.
Kovac is twice divorced though at his heart he does want to be with someone. We see him starting to click with a lieutenant in IA. This is also the beginning of the Christmas light wars he has with his next door neighbor. I don't know why that whole thing tickles me, but it does. Kovac makes mention of Kate Conlan from book #1, and even goes and sees her and John Quinn (now together and happy). Even though Kovac would love nothing more to ignore the calls from the top to close the current case they are working, he and Liska still push ahead.
Liska is a divorced mother of two still hung up on her ex. You get to see her trying to juggle being a detective along with being there for her two boys. It's nice to see a female homicide detective who is apparently well liked be her colleagues and very good at her job.
We get some great secondary characters that I can't say too much about. I really enjoyed Amanda Savard (the lieutenant from IAB) as well as callbacks to book number one.
I thought the writing was very solid. The current case ties into at least two other side plots, but I found that everything works.
The setting of Minneapolis always makes me think of winter. I have no idea why. Probably because most of Hoag's books seem to take place during the fall/winter.
The ending was a gut punch to me. I didn't see the events coming and all I could think was if only at the end.
I have to say that this graphic novel was fantastic. I loved the writing and the art. I cannot wait to get book #2.
"March: Book #1" follows Congressman John Lewis is John Lewis's first hand account of the American Civil Rights Movement. We follow Lewis's family and his first meeting with Dr. Martin Luther King. You get to read the rules that those who participated in the lunch counter sit-ins as well as some awful scenes depicting what people said to those who were protesting, how they were beaten and treated.
What was great though was that we have Lewis preparing to attend President Barack Obama's inauguration and you get to see how happy he and many other African Americans were that they got to witness the first African American president. The graphic novel segues between this and Lewis remembering his past until we get to the end of book #1.
I recently went to the National Museum of African American History & Culture and there are tons of displays that showcase the Civil Rights Movement and talk about how it first got started and highlights those who participated like Rosa Parks, John Lewis, Dr. Martin Luther King, and so many others. I loved reading the displays and looking at the pictures on display. Seeing this in graphic form though made it feel more real to me.
I read this on my Kindle Fire so I was able to blow up some of the scenes in order to read the speech bubbles. I do wonder how this would look if I had a hard copy in my hand though.
The art was so great. Though I have to say I don't know what's worse, reading people being bigoted and racist in written form or via a graphic novel.
Please note that I received this book via NetGalley. This did not affect my rating or review.
Not a lot to say here besides I freaking loved this book. I loved Lock In (the first book in the series) and the world that John Scalzi created. I adored the characters of Vann and Chris. Though the book is told via Chris's POV, I do wish one of the books would be told in Vann's POV. She is just my favorite.
It's been several months or at least a year since the events in the first book. We have Chris still working for the FBI and partnering with Vann. When Chris goes to meet his parents at a Hilketa game, he witnesses a player being taken off the field. Everyone quickly realizes the player is dead. The FBI is brought in due to the fact that the Hilketa game is played by Hadens and that means though the crime took place in Washington, D.C. the Haden player's body was somewhere else. What follows is a lot of twists and turns until you have Chris and Vann figure out how somehow could have killed someone while they were playing a game.
Chris is still living with his roommates and though they were barely in the first half of the book, they do pop up in the second half more. His partnership with Vann is still the best. They crack me up and pop off each other a lot. Chris's parents are still reassuringly there for their son and are involved with the plot in this book too.
We do get new characters in this one and we get to meet another integrator (someone who had the first symptoms of Haden's, but didn't get the full disease) whose life I wish we were told more about. I swear that Scalzi could totally publish some novellas featuring new characters and I would not be upset.
I do love the world that Scalzi has built in this one. Hadens are unfortunately dealing with the fall-out from a bill that was passed in the last book. Many are struggling to make ends meet and now there are rumblings about having non-Hadens get their own threeps as well. I like that Chris sees the issues with this in this book, and I wonder if this is going to pop up in the next book as a plot point.
The ending leaves things with some of the bad guys caught, but with Chris and Vann realizing a bigger conspiracy may be out there. I really did need the X-Files theme song blaring away in the background at this point.
Please note that I received a free ARC in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my rating or review.
So this was a solid debut, but there were still some issues with it. The book became very repetitive after a fashion, and the book was overly explained in parts. I honestly didn't get the main character's (Quille) love for her dead boyfriend (Marco). Maybe if the author had made sure that we as readers got a sense for him and Quille together as a couple first, I would have cared more. I will say that I was fascinated by Quille as a character, and wonder how Lilly plans on having her involved in mysteries in the future.
"The Worried Man" is the first book in the Q.C. Davis mystery series. This first book finds ex-actress, now lawyer, Q.C. (goes by Quille) about to move in with her boyfriend of a few months Marco. When Quille goes to his place she finds him dead. The police and Marco's ex-wife all suspect that he fell off the wagon again and committed suicide. Quille believes that someone killed Marco. Marco's son asks her to investigate, and Quille does.
Quille as I said above was a fascinating character. You find out she used to act. She currently sings in a trio. Currently she is an attorney and seems to be doing pretty okay for herself. You find out that Quille is named for a dead sister and her mother has never really recovered from the first Quille's death. Quille runs into Marco months before his death after singing with her group and feels a spark. I have to say that I didn't feel a spark, and it's never really explained how Marco recognized her from her acting days. This part felt rushed to me since I think that Lilly was more focused on the murder portion of the book.
The other characters in this book, Quille's trio group, a friend who gets involved with investigating, all were interesting to me. I hope Lilly ensures they are developed a bit more in the next book. This book really just focuses on Marco and Quille's feelings for him. Reading about Marco from Quille's POV doesn't help especially at times when I didn't like his character. He sounded like a mess and I wondered why she was even with the guy at times.
The writing was good, though I did say it got repetitive in parts. Also Lilly over explained things so much at times. For example, she goes into why a person that Quille knows is named Mensa Sam. All she had to say is that the guy was a member of Mensa and tells everyone about it. Instead I think we go into three paragraphs about it and it wasn't necessary. Same thing with her explaining that she gets nasty migraines and she needs to take aspirin and do other things in order to stop the migraines. We just need a quick reminder about that, not an explanation every single time.
The book takes place in Chicago and I have to say that Lilly does a good job of describing the city and other locations in it.
The ending though felt a bit off to me. I think it's because I got a little lost about who did what to who and why it was a thing worth killing over.
I think I am being overly generous with four stars, but honestly, when I read a ton of books over a few days, I just go back with my gut feeling about books. So for me, this was not the worst out of the Armand Gamache series, but it was definitely not the best. I felt myself just rolling my eyes at another book looking at the opioid crisis. Maybe because I feel a bit tired of reading about how predominantly white families are torn apart and how countries (the United States and Canada) need to do something. This book just felt a bit samey in parts is the big reason why I didn't give it five stars. We have Jean Guy betray Armand again, Armand forgiving him again, Three Pines being at the center of something massive again, the villagers involved again.
"Glass Houses" appears at first to be another murder mystery, but something else is going on in this book. We have Gamache on the stand as a witness at a murder trial. We don't know who died (and it takes a while to get there) but something is going on with Gamache. He seems to be hell-bent on making sure the trial is a cover for something else. And once again it takes the readers a while to figure that out.
I have to say that Gamache's reasonings in this one made absolutely no sense to me. I think that Penny threw it out there to once again have some conflict between Gamache and Jean Guy. At this point, Jean Guy is freaking Thomas from the Bible. He always has doubts about Gamache, but we are supposed to believe he loves Gamache the most. A real life human being (Gamache) would be sick of it at this point and have an actual human reaction instead of constantly turning the other cheek.
We get more interaction with the villagers in this one. The last one they felt thrown in the plot half haphazardly. This one makes more sense. I actually didn't want to strangle Ruth or Clara in this one either.
I did like how the villagers even called out the things that they have done that they still have regrets over. We have Clara regretting not listening to Gamache that led to Peter's death, Ruth regrets her mother choosing her over her cousin, Olivier admitting that he used to steal from people by omission, etc.
The book jumps back and forth between Halloween and what led to somehow being found murdered in Three Pines along with the murder trial which is taking place in the present day. I have to say that the back and forth in the book was hard to take after a while. I just wanted to either read about the trial or the murder. I was sick of trying to figure out what was going on. The flow was up and down a lot. Once you are finally graced with knowing what is going on though, I just found myself bored until we get almost to the end of the book.
The ending leaves things up in the air with a major character. I don't know if Penny plans on writing another book, but with the events that went down in this one, I don't see how Gamache can come back. At this point another character needs to be the focus of the series.
Apologies in advance fellow booklikers. I read a ton of books and I didn’t have a chance to keep up with everything on my dashboard. I’m too tired to even think about posting updates, so tomorrow it’s just gonna be a review wave from me.
Here’s some pics from my trip:
Saturday Market in Portland
This book was so good! Kovac and Liska are the best. The ending shocked me. Can’t wait to read book number three. It’s been years since I read the start of this series, so happy to be revisiting.
Almost done and loving the second book in this series! Kovac and Liska really are great partners. When an IA cop ends up dead though everyone says it’s auicide, they both think otherwise. It seems linked to events from 20 years ago.
I don’t know if I liked this one or not. There were some plot holes, but I found it interesting. The way this book ends though one wonders how there can be another book in this series though.
Reading Now (11 books):
Trying not to scream.
Going to Read (27):
Read (4 books):
My TBR is 38 books. Sigh. I don't even have time to post reviews right now. I got approved for another book on NetGalley and maybe screamed a bit a while ago.
*TBR Thursday is the brainchild of my partner in crime, Moonlight Reader.
I would call this a solid debut. I think the author gets a bit repetitive and tries to over explain things a bit much. Other than that, the book kept my interest throughout.