Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Review: The Bone Vault by Linda Fairstein

SYNOPSIS:
Assistant DA Alexandra Cooper, off duty for the evening, observes the developing tensions with bemused interest until Met director Pierre Thibodaux pulls her aside. He needs her advice. There's an urgent problem out at a loading dock on a New Jersey pier. A Twelfth Dynasty mummified princess, enclosed for eternity in a huge stone sarcophagus, is about to take a long voyage to Cairo as part of a routine museum exchange. But Cleopatra is missing, and in her place is the not-so-mummified body of a woman many centuries younger than her royal predecessor. Who is this woman with the small physique, the dark hair, and the shiny barrette? What is her connection, if any, to the rarefied world of priceless art and objects? And how and when did she become entombed in the sarcophagus? Teaming with cops Mike Chapman and Mercer Wallace, Alex must explore behind the scenes at the elegant but severe Metropolitan, traveluptown to the remote setting of the Cloisters and its medieval trove of funerary art, and on to the massive array of beasts and bones at the Museum of Natural History. Somewhere deep within the bowels of one of these great cultural centers, a killer may wait.
MY REVIEW:
 
Hey guys! My latest book review today is The Bone Vault by Linda Fairstein.  Of course, I got this book on sale. Hehehe. It has a few creases and the pages are a bit yellowish, regardless of those flaws the book is in very good reading condition.  I haven't read any of Linda Fairstein's novels and this is my very first book from her.

When I read the synopsis of the book, I learned that this book is an on-going series. Her heroine, who is featured on all her books, is a sex-prosecutor named Alexandra Cooper.  I was a bit reluctant if I was going to buy this book.  I mean, another series?  If I like this one, then I'll have to look for her other titles as well!  And that's a bit of a problem, since not all her books are on sale and easy to find.  But in the end, I bought it.  I wouldn't let an interesting story pass me by.  I can really say that I'm a Bookaholic...So much like Becky Bloomwood on Confessions of a Shopaholic. Hehehe.. I should avoid bookstores like.. that's going to happen!  :-)

The Bone Vault was a quick and easy read.  Alexandra's character is this feisty but lovable heroine. I guess Alexandra is Linda Fairstein. Since Linda was a former prosecutor herself. In this book, I've learned loads of informations regarding museum properties, ancient relics, lost civilizations and their culture. The book was very informative and knowledgeable.  The beauty of this book, is that Linda incorporates murder cases with general informations regarding her previous work as a prosecutor. The plot is very well-written and you'd be guessing who the culprit is and that's the goodness of this book.  You think that you knew the killer's identity, and then Linda will prove you wrong.  I was surprised at the ending, I never imagined that the killer will be that person.  I love stories like this!  It makes me want to read the book with intensity and excitement.. To wrap it all up, I'm going to look for her other books! And I'm adding her to my favorite authors list! Cheerz!


My Rating: 4 stars









Sunday, May 23, 2010

In My Mailbox #6: The Blossom Street Series

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by  The Story Siren.
Good day! Here are my newest bargain purchases, uhmmm..I mean, my new book purchases. Hehehe. Ever since I've read Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove Series (Books 1 to 10) she became one of my favorite authors. And now, I'm ready to go back to her wonderful new characters in this  new series. The Blossom Street Series. I really like books with characters that are developing and growing as each book is told by the author. It's like watching a soap opera, but so much better...Hehehe...


Book 1. The Shop on Blossom Street- Have this one and the first on the series.

Book 2. A Good Yarn-Found this underneath a pile of old books in a bookstore, minor creases and already an old copy, but still in very good reading condition.

Stand-Alone Book. Christmas Letters-On Debbie's website, it belongs to the series but it entirely stands at its own but still connected to the Blossom Street Series. I'm having a hardtime looking for this book, maybe because Christmas is not yet here. Hehehe.

Book 3. Susannah's Garden-Don't have this one yet also. Still looking...

Book 4. Back on Blossom Street-Have this one.

Book 5. Twenty Wishes-This was the first book that I bought in the entire series for a very cheap price, the cheapest of the lot!

Book 6. Summer on Blosssom Street-This book just came out on paperback last April 29, on my birthday. Hehehe. But still, I haven't found a copy yet...

Book 7. Hannah's List-This is the latest release from the series. And I still have to wait for another year to have this one. It has to be on paperback, you see, I can't possibly afford to buy the hardcover edition.  A bit expensive.. It so happens that the publisher will release the book on hardcover first then after a year or 6 months,then and only then will the paperback be available...A long wait for me...  :-(

To wrap it all up, I still need 4 books to complete the series.. I'm hoping to get them all at a low price! Wish me the best of luck! Cheerz!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Review: Bone Cold by Erica Spindler

 SYNOPSIS:
SHE THOUGHT THE NIGHTMARE WAS OVER...Twenty-three years ago, Anna North survived a living nightmare. A madman kidnapped her, cut off her pinkie, then vanished. Today Anna lives in New Orleans, writing dark thrillers under another name. She finally feels safe. BUT IT WAS ONLY JUST BEGINNING. Suddenly though Anna's quiet life takes a frightening turn. Letters start to arrive from a disturbed fan. Anna is followed, her apartment broken into. Then a close friend disappears. Anna turns to homicide detective Quentin Malone, but Malone's more concerned with the recent murders of two women in the French Quarter. But after a third victim is found -- a redhead like Anna, her pinkie severed -- Malone is forced to acknowledge that Anna is his link to the killer... and could be the next target. Now Anna must face the horrifying truth -- her past has caught up with her. The nightmare has begun again.

MY REVIEW:

When I saw this book on my usual book hunt expedition, I told myself that I have to buy it.  And it so happened that it was on sale, again! Yep, I'm a "bargain book buyer" and I'm proud of it! Nowadays, all of us should be practical! Hehehe.  I can't believe I bought this book for only P20 at National Bookstore! Yap, the leading bookstore in the Philippines actually sell marked down books as low as the price mentioned a while ago. It's a rare treat and I grabbed the opportunity. IN SILENCE was my very first Erica Spindler novel and I wouldn't have bought this one if I didn't like her books.  

In Bone Cold, her character Anna suffers from a trauma when she was a child.  An experience any child shouldn't have gone through.  She was abducted and held captive together with another child.  She watched as her companion died in the hands of a murderer. Luckily she escaped before the killer turns on her. After years had passed, she changed her name and lived in fear and seclusion. Now, her nightmare is back trying to catch up on her...

The book is very well-written by Erica. You can feel the character of Anna as she struggles to contain her fear that wants to overwhelm her and her new found life. Having survived the ordeal and thinking of the days when she was kidnapped took years for her to overcome and now it seems that it is back to disturb her solace. Murder, mystery, detective work and pure wit on the part of the author, makes this book a must have on your bookshelf. I enjoyed it immensely and I hope I can find more of her latest releases on sale! Hehehe. Cheerz!

My Rating: 4 stars

Monday, May 17, 2010

♠ The Ultimate Writer ♠

Author No.1
John Ronald Reuel Tolkien,(3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973),was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor, best known as the author of the classic high fantasy works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.  Tolkien was Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford University from 1925 to 1945 and Merton Professor of English Language and Literature there from 1945 to 1959. He was a close friend of C. S. Lewis—they were both members of the informal literary discussion group known as the Inklings. Tolkien was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II on 28 March 1972.--courtesy of wikipedia


Books by J.R.R. Tolkien that I've read:

 1. The Hobbit
 2. The Fellowship of the Ring
 3. The Two Towers
 4. The Return of the King

J.R.R. Tolkien for me is the ultimate writer. The best there is. What more can you expect from this guy? He created Middle-Earth! Concocted maps, names, places, creatures, and the list will go on, and on and on....He even created a new artificial language for his characters! Quenya and Sindarin. I mean, who else can surpass this accomplishments? Others do try and copy his style, but the original is still the best! Up to now, I still visit Middle-Earth from time to time.. It's timeless appeal to me will never fade away.. I haven't read the Silmarillion, but I'm planning to.  

As far as i can remember, I read the entire series during my 1st year in college. 

Cheerz!




Friday, May 14, 2010

Review: Pay It Forward by Catherine Ryan Hyde

SYNOPSIS:
The hero of her story is young Trevor McKinney, a 12-year-old whose imagination is sparked by an extra-credit assignment in Social Studies: "Think of an idea for world change, and put it into action." Trevor's idea is deceptively simple: do a good deed for three people, and in exchange, ask each of them to "pay it forward" to three more. "So nine people get helped. Then those people have to do twenty-seven.... Then it sort of spreads out." Trevor's early attempts to get his project off the ground seem to end in failure: a junkie he befriends ends up back in jail; an elderly woman whose garden he tends dies unexpectedly. But even after the boy has given up on his plan, his acts of kindness bear unexpected fruit, and soon an entire movement is underway and spreading across America.--courtesy of Amazon

MY REVIEW:

I've seen the movie and now I've read the book.  I must say that the book again is far much better than the movie. Kevin Spacey's character on the book is a black person.  On the movie his name and skin color was changed, I guess maybe to give a whole new dimension to the movie. They did a lot of changes on the movie. That is why the book is more precise than the movies. I always prefer the books rather than the movie versions.  But it's fun to see the characters "brought to life" once in a while.

Catherine's writing style for me is very powerful. She delves into the deepest emotions of her characters. I love Trevor tremendously, he is the kind of boy any parents would want to have. Kind, caring, sincere and very generous to other people. I was somewhat annoyed at Trevor's mother, Arlene. At first it was so hard for her to trust people she doesn't know, but sure, any of us would be like that. But her son was very open to people he doesn't even know. A total stranger. That's what I think the story is all about. Being kind to others and not thinking of having to get something from a certain person you helped out. To wrap it all up, this book is moving and inspiring. Cheerz!



My rating: 4 Stars

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

♠ Giffin, Preston and Child ♠

Good day to all! Here are the book releases today! I see there's a new Pendergast novel.. Hmmm.. I did post a bad review on The Book of the Dead novel, but I guess I have to read this new book before I judge it. Hehehe. I haven't read any of Emily Giffin's books but this one looks like a good read. I love family novels! Grab any of these books at your favorite bookstores! Cheerz!

 



Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin
Tessa Russo is the mother of two young children and the wife of a renowned pediatric surgeon. Despite her own mother’s warnings, Tessa has recently given up her career to focus on her family and the pursuit of domestic happiness. From the outside, she seems destined to live a charmed life. Valerie Anderson is an attorney and single mother to six-year-old Charlie–a boy who has never known his father. After too many disappointments, she has given up on romance–and even to some degree, friendships–believing that it is always safer not to expect too much. Although both women live in the same Boston suburb, the two have relatively little in common aside from a fierce love for their children. But one night, a tragic accident causes their lives to converge in ways no one could have imagined. In alternating, pitch-perfect points of view, Emily Giffin creates a moving, luminous story of good people caught in untenable circumstances. Each being tested in ways they never thought possible. Each questioning everything they once believed. And each ultimately discovering what truly matters most. --from the publisher


Fever Dream by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
Yesterday, Special Agent Pendergast still mourned the loss of his beloved wife, Helen, who died in a tragic accident in Africa twelve years ago. Today, he discovers she was murdered. Tomorrow, he will learn her most guarded secrets, leaving him to wonder: Who was the woman I married? Why was she murdered? And, above all . . . Who murdered her? Revenge is not sweet: It is essential. --from the publisher

Sunday, May 9, 2010

♠ Happy Mother's Day! ♠

Wonderful Mother
God made a wonderful mother, A mother who never grows old; He made her smile of the sunshine, And He moulded her heart of pure gold; In her eyes He placed bright shining stars, In her cheeks fair roses you see;God made a wonderful mother, And He gave that dear mother to me. 


M - O - T - H - E - R
"M" is for the million things she gave me,
"O" means only that she's growing old,
"T" is for the tears she shed to save me,
"H" is for her heart of purest gold;
"E" is for her eyes, with love-light shining,
"R" means right, and right she'll always be,
Put them all together, they spell
"MOTHER,"
A word that means the world to me.


Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers in the world! GOD bless us all!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Review: The Third Secret by Steve Berry

SYNOPSIS:
Vatican City, present day: Papal secretary Father Colin Michener is concerned for the Pope. Night after restless night, Pope Clement XV enters the Vatican’s Riserva, the special archive open only to popes, where the Church’s most clandestine and controversial documents are stored. Though unsure of the details, Michener knows that the Pope’s distress stems from the revelations of Fatima.Equally concerned, but not out of any sense of compassion, is Alberto Cardinal Valendrea, the Vatican’s Secretary of State. Valendrea desperately covets the papacy, having narrowly lost out to Clement at the last conclave. Now the Pope’s interest in Fatima threatens to uncover a shocking ancient truth that Valendrea has kept to himself for many years.When Pope Clement sends Michener to the Romanian highlands, then to a Bosnian holy site, in search of a priest–possibly one of the last people on Earth who knows Mary’s true message–a perilous set of events unfolds. Michener finds himself embroiled in murder, suspicion, suicide, deceit, and his forbidden passion for a beloved woman. In a desperate search for answers, he travels to Pope Clement’s birthplace in Germany, where he learns that the third secret of Fatima may dictate the very fate of the Church–a fate now lying in Michener’s own hands.
MY REVIEW:

My second Steve Berry novel and all I can say is WOW! I never expected this book to be this exceptional. It's way better than the first book I've read entitled, The Amber Room. The Third Secret is full of intrigues and politics. In pursuant of reading this book I've learned so much regarding the political side of the Vatican. Steve Berry managed to inject fiction on the book and the result is pure goodness!

A pope who is obsessed with the Fatima Secret...A priest who is still longing for his love...A cardinal who wants to take over the papacy...And of course, the occasional bad guy who adds spice in the story...In this book, so many unwelcome issues were discussed by the characters. If priests should be allowed to get married and if women should be allowed to be priests too. Now these topics are both controversial and in contrast to the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. I enjoyed reading this book, in view of the fact, that the author's story telling was fast-paced and he culled anything that wasn't necessary to the story. He was direct to the point on where the story would go and how it will end.

To wrap it all up, go and get a copy of this book. You won't regret buying it. I, on the other hand will try to buy another title from this fantastic author! Cheers!

My rating: 4 ½ stars

Thursday, May 6, 2010

In My Mailbox #5: Koontz and Ketchum

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by  The Story Siren.
Hey guys! Two new book purchases today! I found Dean Koontz inside a surplus store in Cubao, it's on sale again! Well, I only buy bargain books. Hehehe. But the quality is good. I just don't randomly buy something without looking at the condition of the book first. I've read 2 books from Dean, The Face of Fear and Phantoms. Great reads! Now, Jack Ketchum is a different story. I haven't read any of his books before and I hope this one will be a good read! Cheerz!




Dean Ray Koontz (born July 9, 1945) is an American author best known for his novels which could be described broadly as suspense thrillers. He also frequently incorporates elements of horror, science fiction, mystery, and satire. Several of his books have appeared on the New York Times Bestseller List, with ten hardcovers and fourteen paperbacks reaching the number one slot. Early in his career, Koontz wrote under an array of pen names.--courtesy wikipedia

Jack Ketchum is the pseudonym of American horror author Dallas Mayr. Born in 1946, Mayr has been praised by such literary icons as Stephen King, and condemned by a Village Voice critic who dismissed his work as violent pornography. A onetime actor, teacher, literary agent, and lumber salesman, Ketchum credits his childhood love of Elvis Presley, dinosaurs, and the horror genre for instilling him with the foundation to build a respectable career. His 1981 debut novel, Off Season, laid the groundwork for a series of novels and short stories (sometimes inspired by real-life events) in which humankind proves to be the most dreaded beast of all. Most notably, his novel The Girl Next Door was inspired by the 1965 murder of Sylvia Likens.--courtesy of wikipedia

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

♠ Book Releases Today! ♠

Hey there my fellow Pinoys! These are the book releases today! Red Pyramid looks good and I kinda have my eye on Tell All. Loads of books to look forward to on the coming days ahead. I hope you can grab some of these titles! Books posted here are courtesy of Daemons Books! Visit their website! Mabuhay!

 


Dead In the Family by Charlaine Harris
After enduring torture and the loss of loved ones during     the brief but deadly Faery War, Sookie Stackhouse is hurt and she’s angry. Just about the only bright spot in her life is the love she thinks she feels for vampire Eric Northman. But he’s under scrutiny by the new Vampire King because of their relationship. And as the political implications of the Shifters coming out are beginning to be felt, Sookie’s connection to the Shreveport pack draws her into the debate. Worst of all, though the door to Faery has been closed, there are still some Fae on the human side-and one of them is angry at Sookie. Very, very angry… --from the publisher
 

 
Innocent by Scott Turow
The sequel to the genre-defining, landmark bestseller Presumed Innocent, INNOCENT continues the story of Rusty Sabich and Tommy Molto who are, once again, twenty years later, pitted against each other in a riveting psychological match after the mysterious death of Rusty’s wife. --from the publisher



Monday, May 3, 2010

♠ The Apprentice Re-Issue Book Cover ♠



It uses the promotional photo for “Rizzoli & Isles”. Don’t the gals look gorgeous?

This paperback will be released in June, just before ICE COLD comes out. The pilot episode of “Rizzoli & Isles” takes its plot from this book, and it will include a few pages of the TV script.--courtesy of tess gerritsen.com







I've read all of Tess Gerritsen's books. And I can say that I'm a fan of her works. And before anything else, the book cover for the re-issue of The Apprentice novel is brilliant! Wow! I'm happy everytime a book is turned into a television or movie event! It's nice to put a face to all the characters I've read before. It makes reading more fun and exciting!

I particularly like her Maura Isles and Jane Rizzoli titles. These two ladies are perfect for each other. Jane is a detective and Maura is a medical examiner. Together they solve bizaare murder cases and embark on deadly missions. Gerritsen's ability to describe crime scenes and procedures are so real I can only imagine her being in situations her characters are in. But that's not the case. She is not a detective nor a medical examiner. Through her writing talent she can convey criminal minds by her thorough research. She truly is a unique writer! Cheerz! 

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Review: The Book of The Dead by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

 SYNOPSIS:      

An FBI agent, rotting away in a high-security prison for a murder he did not commit...His brilliant psychotic brother, about to perpetrate a horrific crime...A young woman with an extraordinary past, on the edge of a violent breakdown...An ancient tomb with an enigmatic curse, about to be unveiled at a celebrity-studded New York gala...The New York Museum of Natural History receives their pilfered gem collection back...ground down to dust. Diogenes, the psychotic killer who stole them in Dance of Death, is throwing down the gauntlet to both the city and to his brother, FBI Agent Pendergast, who is currently incarcerated in a maximum security prison. To quell the PR nightmare of the gem fiasco, the museum decides to reopen the Tomb of Senef. An astounding Egyptian temple, it was a popular museum exhibit until the 1930s, when it was quietly closed. But when the tomb is unsealed in preparation for its gala reopening, the killings--and whispers of an ancient curse--begin again. And the catastrophic opening itself sets the stage for the final battle between the two brothers: an epic clash from which only one will emerge alive.
MY REVIEW:

I think this is the first time that I'm going to post a bad book review on my blog. Well, there's always a first time. Hehehe. But it is not the first that I've encountered books I did not like. Paulo Coelho's The Alchemist did not stir any feeling of excitement on me. The book was a national bestseller and many of my friends told me the book was really something. After reading a few pages, I gave up on it. Paulo's writing style did not catch my interest. Iris Johansen also failed to entice me with her novels (Fatal Tide, The Killing Game). Robert Jordan's The Eye of the World, first on the Wheel of Time Series also had the same fate as The Alchemist. I was aware that the Wheel of Time Series was huge on the fantasy genre. And since I've read the Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, The Sword of Truth Series, Shannara Series, and The Harry Potter Series, I wanted to embark on another fantasy adventure. But Robert Jordan failed miserably on transporting me on that world of wonders I really like to visit. I'm not saying I'm closing my doors to these authors. I would like to try and read their other novels, but I have to be vigilant on choosing any of their titles. It has to be different from the first ones that I've read. 

The Book of The Dead, sadly, is a book I wasn't able to finish. I did try to read it, but I wasn't digging the story so I gave up. The authors are good writers but they are not my cup of tea. Their writing style wasn't enough for me, I needed more. Cheerz! 



My Rating: 2 stars 
 


Saturday, May 1, 2010

In My Mailbox #4: Ms. Hyde

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by  The Story Siren.

Hey there! The month of May is here! What a way to start it with a new book purchase! Actually, I would like to consider this book as a gift for myself. Hehehe. I found this title somewhere in Cubao. I was just doing my usual book hunt when I grab a hold of this novel. The title "Pay it Forward" sounds familiar to me and then I remembered that I saw a film before called Pay It Forward starring Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt and Haley Joel Osment. That film was great! I read the synopsis and I found out that this book is where the film was based on! I purchased it immediately. I was very much eager to read it! It was on sale. Hehehe. And it was in hardbound too! It was my lucky day! Cheerz!

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