Contemporary · Mystery/Crime · Romance

Beating Ruby – Camilla Monk

30212829| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ |

Goodreads synopsis: Life hasn’t been quite the same for computer engineer Island Chaptal since March, an OCD-ridden professional killer, burst into her life to clean her bedroom and take her on a global chase for a legendary diamond. Sadly, the (hit) man doesn’t just break bones; he breaks hearts, too.

Since then, Island has found solace in Alex—the perfect boyfriend—and Ruby, a software project about to revolutionize online banking security…for the worse. When Island’s boss is found dead after allegedly using Ruby to steal a vast fortune, it’s up to her to clear his name and recover the money. Someone else wants answers, though, and this time, Island might be in over her head.

From New York to Zürich, it’s going to take the return of a cleaning expert, a mini-octopus, and Island’s wits to beat Ruby. All while deciding whether to trust a man who already jilted her, or one who may have his own deadly secrets…

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My thoughts: This is the second book in the Spotless series. It is not a standalone and you will have to read the first book before this one to really understand some of the references. I would recommend that you do not read this review either if you haven’t read the first one, since it will be a little “spoilerish”. There are things I can’t discuss without referring to the first book. You do not have to worry if you already have read the first book.

You have been warned!

In this book we gets to follow Island, 6 months after the Tokyo fiasco and finally in a good place again. Then her boss goes and kill himself, her big project gets stolen and there is something that doesn’t feel right to her. As a new, stronger, woman she sets out to try and find the truth about what really happened, but she finds more truth than she had barged for. Then in walk March and you could say that the whole situation gets a 100 times worse. Or better. Depends on your point of view.

I can’t say that this book is as good as the first one, but it is still good. Not as fast paced and explosive but still entertaining. It was nice to meet all the characters again. The whole March and Alex situation is certainly entertaining but still a little hard to wrap my mind around. It was not until the end that I really understood what have been going on the whole book. By then I felt some things could have been changed on, written in another way to give the story a little more depth about those three characters. There is no cliffhanger per say, but still an indication that there will be a third book. Now I know that it already exists a third, but at one point there wasn’t. You can see that in the book. I do however not like Islands passivity in this book. She stands in situations with blind eyes and takes no action until the end.

I think the third book will be really entertaining and I would recommend this book to anyone who would like to have some explosive action, quirky characters, secrets, funny humor and heartwarming love.

Mystery/Crime · Suspense · Thriller/Horror

Diabolical – Jana Deleon

31396255| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Nine years ago, the police found Shaye Archer wandering in the French Quarter, beaten and abused and with no memory of the previous fifteen years, not even her name. Now, at twenty-four, Shaye is a licensed private investigator, determined to get answers for her clients when the police can’t help. But her last case uncovered more than anyone anticipated, and pieces of Shaye’s missing past have surfaced with unexpected consequences.

She’s starting to remember.

Will Shaye unlock the secrets buried deep in her mind? And more importantly, can she handle the truth if she does?

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My thoughts: In this third book about Shaye Archer, the mystery is finally starting to unravel. Her memories starting to flow back and along the way discovers not only her but every one she love or has helped her, is in danger. A madman is back on the street of New Orleans and no one is safe anymore.

I do not often read series where it take several books to unravel some secret but this has certainly been a great journey. Deleon has a really unique style of writing. It is capturing and explosive. I do however feel that it was a little less this time. Both book one and two got a full five star rating. That is how good they are. This one however never reached that five star. Something was missing. I felt a little detached and the ending was somewhat weird even tough a lot surprising. I love the way the story started of several years before Shaye even was born. Deleon did do a great job with the interweaving the past with the future and the now.

I’m happy that there is more books in the series. I really want to follow Shay some more especially now that the truth is out. I would also love to see how the relationship between her and Jackson is unfolding. I have my own wishes and I really hope that they come true.

It is a great series and I recommend it to everyone who will listen. Its that good. 😀

Mystery/Crime · Suspense · Thriller/Horror

Pandora’s Succession – Russell Brooks

11435761.jpg| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ |

Goodreads synopsis: The deadliest weapon against mankind has been Unleashed.

CIA operative, Ridley Fox, never stopped hunting his fiancée’s killers—a weapons consortium called The Arms Of Ares. When Fox follows a lead to one of their top-secret bioweapons facilities in Chechnya, he barely escapes alive. However, he’s learned that Ares has weaponized a hyper-deadly microbe called Pandora. The trail leads Fox to Tokyo, where he teams up with an old flame and fellow operative, Nita Parris. Aside from Ares, they must contend with rogue agents who’ll stop at nothing to get Pandora. This throws Fox and Parris into a deadly game of spy vs spy, as they must rely on each other to locate the microbe. For if it’s unleashed, it could mean the end of humanity.

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My thoughts: Russell Brooks contacted me and asked if I would like to read and review his book Pandora’s Succession. The first book in the series about Ridley Fox and Nita Parris. Since thriller, mystery and suspense is my favorite genres I certainly had to take the chance. And I’m happy I did because this was, overall, a good book to read.

It is action filled from the first page to the last, with a complicated suspense plot and a intriguing story. It certainly made my mind work. Unfortunately I had some issues with the first 50% of the book, but I feel that Brooks saved it in the end.

At first I had a little trouble with the writing style. It felt kind of forced and I’m wondering if this is Brooks debut book. Because later on in the book the writing started to change. Not much but enough to give me the feeling of a more relaxed author with a more loose writing. Like Brooks had found his way and style and the book grew before me. OR, it is just me who got used to it. Anyhow, the second thing I had trouble with was connecting with the characters. It took me too long to really connect with either of them. And in the beginning there is a lot of characters and it kind of overwhelmed me. I had a little trouble keeping up with who is who. I’m thinking it is because of the writing and that the characters are a little cliché and similar. Those type of characters you find everywhere, without any real depth. Also this changed later on in the book and in the end I really connected with several and even got sad when some bad stuff happened. No tears tough.

Now after I’m done with the book, I really like Fox and Parris. The twists in the end surprised me and that it ended with a “bang” certainly gave me a satisfying feeling. There is no cliffhangers but it do end in a way that lets you as a reader know, that there is more to come from Fox and Parris. And I’m actually quite excited about that.

Contemporary · Mystery/Crime · Romance · Suspense

Slow Burn – Julie Garwood

107771| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ |

Goodreads synopsis: Every fire begins with a little heat–and in Slow Burn, bestselling author Julie Garwood provides the spark, skillfully blending pulse-pounding action, intense emotion, and characters with grit and heart. The result is an electrifying novel of romantic suspense that will have readers burning through the pages.

An unpretentious beauty who radiates kindness, Kate MacKenna doesn’t have a bad bone in her body–or an enemy in the world. So why are bombs igniting everywhere she goes? The first explosion brings her face-to-face with a handsome Charleston police detective. The second sends her into the arms of her best friend’s brother–a Boston cop who’s a little too reckless and way too charming for comfort. But Dylan Buchanan won’t let emotion prevent him from doing his job: Someone is trying to kill Kate, and Dylan is the only one standing between her and the monster who wants her dead.

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My thoughts: Sometime you seek that kind of book, that gives you a feeling of comfort. That makes you want to settle down on the couch, in bed or in that favorite reading chair. With the biggest blanket (that you bought just to have when you read) with a big cup of beverage of your choice, and just stay there. The world outside does not exist and it is just you and your new friends. And for those brief moments, it all feels okay. Well, this is one of those books for me. And I hadn’t really expect anything less since this is Julie Garwood. I know what to expect and I’m so happy that I got it. It was just what I needed. Garwood is an great writer in this genre and one of my favorite authors. And I always feel so good after one of her books.

Here we get to follow Kate. After her mother’s death her life is starting to crumble around her. But she is a strong woman and refuse to give up. After she almost been blown up twice, in one week, Dylan Buchanan, Kate’s best friends brother, comes to help find out what is happening. He is on leave from his work at Boston PD and since he always had strong, secret feelings for Kate, he can’t let her fend for herself. The situation is intense and fireworks is going off right from the start.

This is a “typical” romantic suspense book. You pretty much know what is going to happen. Though I do not want to call it predictable. I couldn’t early one foresee who the bad guy was in this book. It was easy to see why and there was no secret about the reasons, but it was not as predictable to find out who it really was. It was awesome.

It is a great book. Just what I needed. There is great characters, great development, great story and plot and the way it is unfolding feels real and suitable. There is never any cliffhangers and sometime you get to meet characters that have had bigger parts earlier in the series. Mostly I would say that you can read it as an stand alone. But if you are as OCD as me, I do not recommend it.

Mystery/Crime · Romance · Suspense

Tennessee takedown – Lena Diaz

18343283.jpg| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: A SWAT officer in small-town Tennessee will do anything to protect the innocent beauty whose life has been put on the line in Lena Diaz’s Tennessee Takedown

It can’t be a coincidence that in the past twenty-four hours, three different thugs have tried to kill or abduct Ashley Parrish. Sexy SWAT team leader Dillon Gray saved her, but now he wonders why someone would want to murder the beautiful accountant and why he finds her so infuriatingly attractive.

Then the FBI comes after Ashley for embezzlement, and Dillon knows he must protect her from a killer and prove she’s being framed. Taking her on a hair-raising run through dangerous terrain barely fazes him. But wanting her from more than just one night scares the hell out of him.

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My thoughts: I have read Lena Diaz other series (Deadly Games) and I LOVED it. There is four books in that series, filled with hot alpha males, strong women, incredible thrilling suspense and complicated character relationships. Three of the four books got a 5/5 score and the last one, number four got 4/5. That is how good that series was. Can you imagine my surprise that I found this first book in one of her other series, extremely lacking and disappointing?

I had expected the same level of writing skill and imagination but there was nothing. Nothing! My mind is blank! I feel nothing other than disappointment toward this book. It starts right in the middle of a shootout and then there is action throughout the whole book. There is never a break and I think that is maybe the point that rubs me the wrong way. Ashley is just to TSTL (too stupid to live) and I Dillon is just a used up character with no real depth. I could not connect with them and they more irritated me than anything else. The plot was quite interesting until the end, when it just got too much. I mean, come on, can you be that stupid? I do like the whole stolen identity plot even though it was predictable right from the start.

What really saved this book is the other characters. Chris, Chief Thornton, Donna and so on. I don’t know if Diaz did it on purpose, but it did feel like she put more thought in those characters than what she did in her main ones. That is the only reason I feel I would like to read the second book in this series. The second book is about Chris and I do want to read more about him. *Wink*

Fiction/Science Fiction · Mystery/Crime · Thriller/Horror

The fire witness – Lars Kepler

16085509| GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Detective Inspector Joona Linna, under internal review by the National Police for an alleged infraction, is on leave to solve some troubling personal business when he is called in to “observe” the investigation of a gruesome and strange murder at Birgittagarden, a youth home for wayward teenage girls. But it’s not long before Linna is drawn deeply into the intricate, disturbing case. Intriguing, astonishing, and with all of the suspense that first captured audiences in The Hypnotist, The Fire Witness is Lars Kepler at his most psychologically complex and thrilling.

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My thoughts: The third book about the Swedish/Finish Cop Joona Linna. He is a ruff character with an immensely good moral compass and somewhat of an enigma. But in this book, you finally are starting to get some answers to who Linna really is and why he is and do as he does. However, you do sit in the end of the book, with a ton of questions but there are more books in the series so I’m pretty sure I will get my answers someday. The book do not end on a cliffhanger however, for those who are like me and don’t like that.

The books story is just great. Joona Linna is under internal review due to some stuff that happened in the second book. But since he is that good guy that he is, he breaks the rules to save a kid after getting called in to “observe” a crime scene at a youth home, where a young girl and the homes nightwatchman has been killed, and another girl is missing. Not only that but he has some personal issues to resolve and it makes the suspense a lot more intense. And not only that. A psychic comes in and stir the pot even more. And I just say, wow!

Lars Kepler is really not a person but an pseudonym for the married couple Alexander Ahndoril and Alexandra Coelho Ahndoril. Yeah I think they did the right thing with one name since theirs are so alike. I love their way of writing and how they succeed to include the readers in the story in a way I don’t feel many Swedish authors are able to do. Scandinavian litterateur is not one of my favorites but I try to broaden my view to also close authors. Not just authors from the other side of the glob.

I do have to warn you that this series is not an standalone series and I do recommend that you start with the first book if you are interested. But it is total worth it.

Fiction/Science Fiction · Mystery/Crime · Thriller/Horror

The doll’s house – M.J Arlidge

23519826| GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ |

Goodreads synopsis: A young woman wakes up in a cold, dark cellar, with no idea how she got there or who her kidnapper is. So begins her terrible nightmare.

Nearby, the body of another young woman is discovered buried on a remote beach. But the dead girl was never reported missing – her estranged family having received regular texts from her over the years. Someone has been keeping her alive from beyond the grave.

For Detective Inspector Helen Grace it’s chilling evidence that she’s searching for a monster who is not just twisted but also clever and resourceful – a predator who’s killed before.

And as Helen struggles to understand the killer’s motivation, she begins to realize that she’s in a desperate race against time .

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My thoughts: I was skeptical about this book. I liked the first one in the series, but the second got pretty low rating by me. I am however happy that I choosed to read it anyway because it was really good. There is one thing I have an issue with however. And that is all the drama.

There is 5 female characters in this book who have some kind of issue with one another. There is jealousy and other stuff that just brings the story down. I hate drama and I hate office politics. Bringing this two together and it brings it all down for me and I am ashamed over the female genus because I know that this happens in the real world. However, it was still nice to get some kind of closure on the whole Grace and Harwood fiasco and I hope the drama is now over.

The story itself is classical. No big surprises and it is something you have seen or read to many times. It is still entertaining and then I also like these slow burner, English crime books that ends with a bang. Helen Grace keeps being an enigma and after three books, I can’t say that I know who she is. I know she has some problems due to her childhood and that she has a strong desire to help people. But other than that, she is a complete puzzle to us readers.

One other thing I liked with this book is that the chapters are really short and it pleases my OCD. I can absolutely see myself read the fourth book in the series.

Fiction/Science Fiction · Mystery/Crime · Thriller/Horror

The treatment – Mo Hayder

647954| GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ |

Goodreads synopsis: Midsummer, and in an unassuming house on a quiet residential street on the edge of Brockwell Park in south London, a husband and wife are discovered. Badly dehydrated, they’ve been bound and beaten, the husband is close to death. But worse is to come: their young son is missing.

When DI Jack Caffery of the Met’s AMIT squad is called in to investigate, the similarities to events in his own past make it impossible for him to view this new crime with the necessary detachment. And as Jack digs deeper, as he attempts to hold his own life together in the face of ever more disturbing revelations about both the past and the present, the real nightmare begins…

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My thoughts: I have very few triggers when it comes to books. I read most of it. I don’t like it all and it can affect me bad mentally, but mostly I can handle it. But the few triggers I do have, are different types of sexual assaults. Specially against kids. I can read a book when the story is that it already has happen and you get to read about it in past tense and preferable not in that much details. Read it happen in present time and aftermath is something I have tough time with and I do my best to avoid those types of books.

So, you can imagine how tough this book was for me. And I didn’t know that it was supposed to be about pedophilia and other sick monsters. Now I’m glad I didn’t know since the book is terrifyingly awesome and if given the choice, maybe I would not have read it. But since I do have read the first book, I should have been a little smarter and foreseen that this would be a big part of the book. Apparently, I’m not that smart.

This book was so much better than the first book and I love the broken dynamic between Jack and Becky and how they, even though all the shit that has happened, not give up. The truth comes out and it just makes them fight harder for them self’s and each other and I love that. Other than that, the book is a typical British crime novel. Some really sick stuff is happening and you get some answers on questions from the first book (So yeah you should read them in order) and it builds something of a series I can see myself continue.

But no, this is not a light read but I do think it’s worth it.

Fiction/Science Fiction · Mystery/Crime · Suspense · Thriller/Horror

Intensity – Dean Koontz

33297557| GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Edgler Vess is a sociopath intent on murder. He lives for one purpose only: to satisfy all appetites as they arise, seeking ever more outrageous experience. To live with intensity.

When he attacks her friend, Laura, Chyna Shepherd is saved by the instincts developed during a dark and turbulent childhood. Not knowing Laura is already dead, Chyna follows, hoping to save her friend, as Vess carries her body to his motor home – a dungeon and morgue on wheels. The killer, unaware of her presence, drives away. But Chyna is now trapped in his dangerous orbit.

Her sole aim is to get out alive, but when she learns the identity of the killer’s next intended victim, she knows she must act to save that precious life – and take risks beyond any that she ever imagined she could endure.

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My thoughts: It is funny how years and experience can change your point of view and how you perceive the world. I read this book for the first time when I was like 11-13 years old. I think it must have been wrongly placed in the library because they where really strict about children under the age of 15, reading this types of books. And even now, I don’t really see this one as an young adult book. But anyhow, it was the first book I ever read by Koontz and it mesmerized me. Terrified me. Woke my love for thriller, horror and the mystery that is serial killers. Now, like 17 years later, I still like it a lot, but I do not feel the same mesmerized feelings for it as I did when I was younger.

And that is what I mean about how different your point of view gets with age and experience. I remember a lot from the book but there was some really important details that I did not remember an actually surprised me. It was nice to read a book, where I did not remember it all, but still did. Do you know what I mean? And I perceive the book completely different now and what I did then. And in my opinion, there is no horror. It is an thriller and it is great. But I have probably read and seen to much, gotten to jaded, to feel that this is an horror. It does not mean it isn’t good. But I just don’t see it as an horror anymore.

I have read a lot by Koontz but here you can really see that it is his earlier work of art. I feel he writes his book different nowadays and that his older works, usually is better. More real and terrifying. Vess is just such an weird killer, so different from what you usually read about in books. He is just so much more down to earth, smart and not insane and very logical. And THAT is certainly terrifying. Chyna is a little gray and I think that really was the point with her history and all. But it made it a little boring and somewhat repeatable until she got her fighting spirit going and refused to let some asshole decide over her life. Overall a great book, worth to be read by those who likes thrillers and getting in the mind of the characters and see the actions through the killers mind, not only the good guys.

Fiction/Science Fiction · Mystery/Crime · Romance · Suspense

Blue Smoke – Nora Roberts

114184.jpg| GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Reena Hale grew up with an intimate knowledge of the destructive power of fire. When she was a child, her family’s restaurant was burned to the ground, and the man responsible was sent to jail. The Hale family banded together to rebuild, and Reena found her life’s calling. She trained as a firefighter and then as a cop, always with the end goal in sight: to become an arson investigator. Now, as part of the arson unit, she is called in on a series of suspicious fires that seem to be connected-not just to each other, but to her. And as danger ignites all around her, Reena must rely on experience and instinct to catch a dangerous madman who will not stop until everything she loves has gone up in smoke.

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My thoughts: I have said before that my biggest problem with Roberts books, is that they often start of slow. And we do not talk about just a couple of chapters but like 1/3 or 1/4 of the book is Slow. No difference here either, but this time it did not bother me as much. Maybe because it still happens a lot even though we have like 20 years to get through before we are the ace of the book. Or maybe it is because I was so prepared on the fact that it would start slow and I just need to have patience.

The story is great and as always I love all of the characters. That is something Roberts are very good at. Writing good and alive characters. And I love Bowen and how well he fit together with Reena and she is all thorns on the outside but he manages to sneak in between without getting stung to bad and that just makes it all so much better. But I have a huge problem with this book. And that is the red thread, the ending, the answers or what not I should call it. I knew it all from the start, and I mean all, through out the book but often thought for my self that, soon it will come an curveball. Soon something will happen and my thoughts will change drastically. It just can’t be this obvious. But yeah, it is that obvious which gave me an anticlimactic feeling in the end of the book.

To know it all, from the start off the book, and hope you are wrong, but are not, is just not a good feeling for me. And that only took of an star/heart in my rating of this book. That is how much it effected me. The story is still god and if I would have been prepared that it is somewhat clear water, it would probably not have affected me as much. But yeah, nothing to do about it now. Still a good book and I can still recommend it.