Mystery/Crime · Thriller/Horror

Lazarus – Lars Kepler

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Goodreads synopsis: A dead man is found in an apartment in Oslo. The victim transpires to be an unknown grave defiler and trophy collector, and when the police open his kitchen freezer, they make a terrible discovery. A few days later, Joona Linna is contacted by a German police detective who asks for his help with a murder outside Rostock. Joona understands that the pattern he’s starting to see is insane, but at the same time it’s impossible to ignore.

Some would call it a miracle if someone returned from the dead – others would call it a nightmare.

The master of thrillers, Lars Kepler, is back with the seventh installment in the Joona Linna series.

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My thoughts: Lazarus has not yet been translated to English but Lars Kepler and the series about Joona Linna is highly popular. That’s why I do not think it will be long before it have been translated. Just be patience. 🙂

The 7th book about the Swedish/Finish cop Joona Linna is finally here. I have been waiting for this one since June. Joona is finally back and trying to take control over his life. There is finally some good things happening when it all comes crashing down and burns. Surprised? No. Did I foresee it? Yes. Was it in the way I though? Well, pretty much. It is bloody and violent, certainly not a book for sensitive readers and highly predictable. At least in my opinion. I feel that Kepler did not take the story where it should have gone. Just chewed on what they already have and spit it out. The same but in a new form. Highly disappointing.

I found it quite boring that Kepler still going on with the same plot-line. It’s mediocre, overrated and even flamboyant at times. The Ahndorils aka Keplers need to learn when to stop. And that time was two books ago. Don’t do what I’m thinking you will do with that end you left us with. It is not interesting and I do not want it. Try something new. We are soon in 2019 you know. Not 2011.

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

The Devil’s star – Jo Nesbø

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Goodreads synopsis: A young woman is murdered in her Oslo flat. One finger has been severed from her left hand, and behind her eyelid is secreted a tiny red diamond in the shape of a five-pointed star – a pentagram, the devil’s star.

Detective Harry Hole is assigned to the case with his long-time adversary Tom Waaler and initially wants no part in it. But Harry is already on notice to quit the force and is left with little alternative but to drag himself out of his alcoholic stupor and get to work.

A wave of similar murders is on the horizon. An emerging pattern suggests that Oslo has a serial killer on its hands, and the five-pointed devil’s star is key to solving the riddle.

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My thoughts: Another excellent, complex thriller from the Norwegian author Jo Nesbø. As I probably said before, I was not a big fan of his two first books about Harry Hole. I absolutely loved the third and the fourth was a little mediocre. Now this. This is the book I would refer to when talking about Jo finding his “sound”, his writing style. I found it meticulously and selective in its plot, yet exciting and full of suspense. The alcoholism story is a lot bigger than in the earlier books. A lot more raw, emotional and there is sometimes you wonder if Jo is writing from a personal experience. That is how vivid and sentimental I found it.

Harry Hole is an character I can’t decide if I love or hate. He’s a loner, he’s prickly, he drinks. He does not like authority, yet he is a cop. He’s a broken man who for some reason never gives up even though he certainly tries. He can’t keep a normal relationship with anyone, he has almost no friends and he is down in the deep, trying to drink his sorrows away that you can’t help but wonder, where is this going to end.

Besides all that, it is a good book. I do love a good serial-killer plot even though I did find it was more of a side plot to the story than the actual main story-line. In fact in the mist of it all, there is dark secrets finally surfacing to the light. Even though I did not find the end as satisfying as I would like, it is certainly the perfect end if the series would stop here. I do however know that there is 6 more books about Harry Hole and the great thing is that you do not know where Jo will take us. It is impossible to foresee and he is that unpredictable.

Everyday things

Faire un voyage

bonvoyageI’m going on a vacation and will not be able to write any reviews in that period. But I will still read and when I’m back, hopefully I have lots and lots of books to review. (Probably not but hey, I can dream.)

A fun thing however is that I’m going book shopping while there, so I probably will have a little book haul to share with you. Wish to follow me on my travel? Take a look at my Instagram.

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

End of watch – Stephen King

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Goodreads synopsis: In Room 217 of the Lakes Region Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic, something has awakened. Something evil. Brady Hartsfield, perpetrator of the Mercedes Massacre, where eight people were killed and many more were badly injured, has been in the clinic for five years, in a vegetative state. According to his doctors, anything approaching a complete recovery is unlikely. But behind the drool and stare, Brady is awake, and in possession of deadly new powers that allow him to wreak unimaginable havoc without ever leaving his hospital room.

Retired police detective Bill Hodges, the unlikely hero of Mr. Mercedes and Finders Keepers, now runs an investigation agency with his partner, Holly Gibney—the woman who delivered the blow to Hartsfield’s head that put him on the brain injury ward. When Bill and Holly are called to a suicide scene with ties to the Mercedes Massacre, they find themselves pulled into their most dangerous case yet, one that will put their lives at risk, as well as those of Bill’s heroic young friend Jerome Robinson and his teenage sister, Barbara. Brady Hartsfield is back, and planning revenge not just on Hodges and his friends, but on an entire city.

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My thoughts: Naah! In my opinion I could have skipped this book. Make my own ending and be good with it. Because this was boring. I think the idea was great and the plot was sufficient, but it was never captivating, interesting or exciting. Halfway through I wanted to DNF but I made a commitment to finish the series. (I’m horrible bad on finish series.) Besides, I do like the characters Bill and Holly so it was nice to follow them for a while more.

This one in the series is absolutely a lot more like the Stephen King we know and love. And I think it is that who wrecked it for me. The first two books are so painstakingly normal that going in the third book with that type of fantasy twist, made it disconnect from the first two books. It was only the characters who made it clear it still was the same series since it was so, so different. Others probably loves that type of thing. I however do not.

King is such a hit and miss type of author for me. Some books I love, others I don’t. It is funny how similar it can be even in a series. I loved the first book, the second was okay and the third I could have done without.

Contemporary · Mystery/Crime · Romance · Suspense

Crystal Whisperer – Camilla Monk

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Goodreads synopsis: Sweet Jesus, this is it! Or maybe not.

Perpetually foiled romance heroine Island Chaptal and reformed cleaning expert March —or is it Mr. November?— are enjoying a pleasant break in South-Africa, after brushing death in the inhospitable and platypus-infested mountains of Liechtenstein…

That is, until a commercial flight disintegrates over the Atlantic, killing hundreds, and Island’s supervillain dad makes the news as the mastermind behind the attack. Old Lion Dries is now on the run, and he calls upon his last ally —and favorite disciple— March.

From the streets of Venice to the turquoise waters of French Polynesia, March and Island embark on a deadly race against the clock to find out what secrets lie behind Dries’s downfall, and stop the mysterious “Crystal Whisperer” before it’s too late. This time, though, there might just be no winning against futuristic weapons, CIA agents, Roomba cats, (reluctantly) evil henchmen, and dads who won’t let you get your groove on, dammit!

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My thoughts:*Rant warning* No, no no no NO! You are not supposed to end these books on that kind of cliffhanger. NO! I’m not ready to read the forth book right away but when you end it like that I just have to. I just must! So now you, my dear readers, know that this third book in the Spotless series ends on major cliffhanger. Not a small and acceptable one no, butt pretty much mid-sentence type of cliffhanger. GAH! Okay Rant over.

This is frustrating. First of I have to say that I really didn’t need a third, yes a THIRD book with the same theme “I’m going to die a virgin.” That plot you have bled dry now Monk. It’s time to move on. Get the speed up. Especially the romantic part of the book is so slow that we are pretty much moving backwards. It starting to be excessive and I need more and I need it know.

Other than that Monk is also still playing on the same string with the action and history. There is so much going on that at the same time you feel like it never goes anywhere. To be honest I actually started skimming the few last chapters because it did not give me anything. It was just the same, again. Other aspects of the book is a lot darker than the first two books. I love to follow the struggle and emotionally development and it is that who saved it for me. It made it real, interesting and easy to connect with, but still, it could have moved on a little further than that.

I enjoy the series as a whole but this one is the least of my favorite to be honest. I do hope the fourth one is better.

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

The Apprentice – Tess Gerritsen

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Goodreads synopsis: It is a boiling hot Boston summer. Adding to the city’s woes is a series of shocking crimes, in which wealthy men are made to watch while their wives are brutalized. A sadistic demand that ends in abduction and death.

The pattern suggests one man: serial killer Warren Hoyt, recently removed from the city’s streets. Police can only assume an acolyte is at large, a maniac basing his attacks on the twisted medical techniques of the madman he so admires. At least that’s what Detective Jane Rizzoli thinks. Forced again to confront the killer who scarred her – literally and figuratively – she is determined to finally end Hoyt’s awful influence . . . even if it means receiving more resistance from her all-male homicide squad.

But Rizzoli isn’t counting on the U.S. government’s sudden interest. Or on meeting Special Agent Gabriel Dean, who knows more than he will tell. Most of all, she isn’t counting on becoming a target herself, once Hoyt is suddenly free, joining his mysterious blood brother in a vicious vendetta. . . .

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My thoughts: I enjoy Tess Gerritsens writing and find her a terrific storyteller. That Jane Rizzoli gets on my nerves all the time and that I sometimes just want to scream, is a testimony for how great her writing really is. I had no trouble with keeping the speed up and there were few slow parts. It is action packed and suspense filled all the way from the first page to the last. Such a great ride. We did pick it up more or less from the end of the first book and we are following the same track with Hoyt and all that, just several months later. I thought it would be excessive and underwhelming, maybe even a little boring to go with the same story plot once again but it was never anything like that and I loved it.

Another thing I love is how great Gerritsen are with the medical explanations. They are never tedious or hard to understand for someone like me who is not that knowledgeable in those subjects. And even though I have seen the TV series several times over and there is not that many differences between the book and the series, I was never bored. I did know the ending before starting the book and I thought that was going to be hard for me but it never was. It was nice to meet some of the other characters that has a big part in the TV series and I was a little surprised because they are a little different. But I do think it will be some changes further on in the book series that I’m exciting to follow.

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

Liar Liar – M.J. Arlidge

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Goodreads synopsis: Detective Helen Grace has never seen such destruction. Six fires in twenty-four hours. Two people dead. Several more injured. It’s as if someone wants to burn the city to the ground…

With the whole town on high alert, Helen and her team must sift through the rubble to find the arsonist, someone whose thirst for fire—and control—is reducing entire lives to ashes.

One misstep could mean Helen’s career—and more lives lost. And as the pressure mounts and more buildings burn, Helen’s own dark impulses threaten to consume her…

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My thoughts: I’m thinking I’m done with this series. I do not feel the enthusiasm anymore and I’m quite sick of the whole “all against Helen” mentality that have such a big part in the books. And there is something suspect with the a new character since him/her (not going to tell you) are not on the “I hate Helen Grace” bandwagon. It is just starting to get to much and nothing of it is intriguing or challenging. I do see how Arlidge is building up to this huge explosion of happenings in a future book but the road forward is just boring me out.

The crime story however is fascinating as always and especially disturbing this time around. I felt it more authentic than usual which left me with a sense of unease and discomfort in my own home. Fire is so destructive and I think it is easy to forget how fire shows nothing or no one mercy while it ravaging over everything you hold dear. There is a high pace and small development in the story with some neat twists and a satisfying ending and if you are looking for something easy for the brain, this is a good alternative for you.

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

The surgeon – Tess Gerritsen

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Goodreads synopsis: IN BOSTON, THERE’S A KILLER ON THE LOOSE…

A killer who targets lone women, who breaks into their apartments and performs terrifying ritualistic acts of torture on them before finishing them off. His surgical skills lead police to suspect he is a physician – a physician who, instead of saving lives, takes them.

But as homicide detective Thomas Moore and his partner Jane Rizzoli begin their investigation, they make a startling discovery. Closely linked to these killings is Catherine Cordell, a beautiful doctor with a mysterious past. Two years ago she was subjected to a horrifying rape and shot her attacker dead.

Now the man she believes she killed seems to be stalking her once again, and this time he knows exactly where to find her…

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My thoughts:This is a reread and I read this book for the first time back in 2002 (somewhere) and remembered it as one of my favourites back then. So of course I had to read it again when I got the chance. Now as an adult I did actually find it as good as I remembered. I did not however remembered it to be as disgusting and graphic as it was, especially when they were talking about the rapes. Or maybe I’m more sensitive to those things now as an adult woman than  I was as a young teenager.

Anyhow, it was really good. I liked the suspense and the story’s development, the characters and the writing. I did however missed Isles. I have of course seen the TV-series based on the book series and I actually thought Maura Isles was in the book series from the start. But she is not in this one. And according to my survey, she doesn’t  appear until book three (except for a small sneak peek in book two). And then it seems like she doesn’t have a roll in every book. How can you then call this A Rizzoli and Isles series when Isles not even makes an appearance in every book. Maybe I’m overreacting but she is my favourite character and I would like to know if she is as funny and lovable as she is in the TV series. Did get an awakening when it comes to Rizzoli to be honest. Did not like her as much but I do think there is more to the character that will be revealed later on in the series. I have not read more than this first book. But I certainly plan to.

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

The Witness – Simon Kernick

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Goodreads synopsis: ‘I had a simple choice. Stay here, and almost certainly be discovered. Or get up and run.’

THE WITNESS
When Jane Kinnear sees her lover being murdered, she suddenly finds herself in danger. Taken to an anonymous police safe-house, it soon becomes clear that her lover was an MI5 informant with important information about an imminent terrorist attack.

THE DETECTIVE
DI Ray Mason of Counter Terrorism Command is a man with a controversial past, but his effectiveness at getting results means that he’s now been given the task of preventing the attack from taking place. But can he be trusted, and does he know more about the attack than he’s letting on?

THE KILLER
In the safe-house, Jane is trying to piece together a description of her lover’s killer. But what she doesn’t know is that the killer has already found out who she is, and where she is hiding.

And now he’s coming for her.

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My thoughts: This was not what I had expected. I thought the book was more about the witness. But in reality you follow Mason most of the book. It started off fast and good with some intense chapter and great build up. Unfortunate that didn’t hold and I lost interest some 100 pages in.

Mason sure is an interesting character with an interesting past. You do get to know a lot about him but you do feel that there is so much more and stuff like that will probably be relived later on in the series. According to GoodReads there is one more book about Ray Mason so far. I will probably not read it though. The witness character was also interesting. With a background where she grew up in South Africa and escaped to the other side of the world and then a lot happened. You don’t get to know everything in one go either and it makes you curious of her past. She is an enigma and great to get to know more about. Certainly fit well with the main character and his own dark secrets.

I am however not fond of terrorists plots. I often find them childish. But I guess it is childish in reality to. To take out your own thoughts and views on other innocent people, just because others are not thinking the same way, is just making you a coward. It is like the bully in school who need to hurt others to feel better him self. Unfortunately terrorist are so much bigger and causes so much more destruction. So since the books plot is more about terrorist than anything else, this was not a book for me.

However, there is a MAJOR plot twist in the end that totally threw me. It was so far from what I expected and it was a great way to heat up the plot again and make it interesting. It was so good that it earned its own star and went from one to two stars in rating. The ending was not 100% completely satisfying but I do understand the reasons for it.

Mystery/Crime · Thriller/Horror

The murder bag – Tony Parsons

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Goodreads synopsis: Twenty years ago seven rich, privileged students became friends at their exclusive private school, Potter’s Field. Now they have started dying in the most violent way imaginable.

Detective Max Wolfe has recently arrived in the Homicide division of London’s West End Central, 27 Savile Row.

Soon he is following the bloody trail from the backstreets and bright lights of the city, to the darkest corners of the internet and all the way to the corridors of power.

As the bodies pile up, Max finds the killer’s reach getting closer to everything – and everyone – he loves.

Soon he is fighting not only for justice, but for his own life …

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My thoughts: Never read anything by Parsons before and I’m pleasantly surprised. I like the book, unfortunately I didn’t love it. Probably because of the slightly diluted plot and the typical English settings. And I don’t mean typical in a good way. This book has a somewhat tame and watered topic, which I have read over and over again before. Why do you have to have that slanted balance of power in crime thrillers, specially English crime? I’m getting tired of it and quite frankly, is the genre done? Is there nothing more to write about? I feel English crime books are a complete genre by itself since they often are the same specially with the work relationships in the police house. Still I do love English Crime.

This gritty thriller is about a rebel cop (Max Wolfe) who’s only goal in his job, is to do the right thing and find out the truth. Perhaps even save a couple of lives along the way. He is following the questions and evidence no matter where it will lead and even if his bosses are against it or try to stop him. Wolfe is a great character to follow. He is a rebel yes, but he is not that typical kick ass cop you often read about. He feels more human, can get hurt as easily as anyone else, struggles with stuff and I love how real he feels. He is a single dad with a daughter and a dog. This little family is the center of the book and makes it warm and real in the chill of the crimes.

The plot was interesting and the mystery wasn’t that predictable. I do want to try the next book in the series. Book two actually have a higher rating on GoodReads and the first book so I’m kind of curios.