Thursday, October 14, 2010

Fall Reading List

BooksImage via WikipediaHello bibliophiles! Time to update my reading list for the Fall. I have been slacking on the updating but not on the reading. On tap will be to finish reviews for the last three books I've read (coming shortly) and a word on LibGuides and attending professional development events. So for now, on to the reading list.

Dead Men's Boots by Mike Carey
Feed by Mira Grant
Goldfinger by Ian Fleming
The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum
Side Jobs by Jim Butcher
Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell (if the professor ever returns it to the library)
Lamb by Christopher Moore (requested)
The Game by Neil Strauss (requested)
Pirate Latitudes by Michael Crichton (requested)

I am sure I will add/update some titles.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Ed's Mini Book Review - Dexter by Design

Dexter by DesignImage via Wikipedia
Now this is what I am talking about! talk about getting back on track and in a big way. Dexter by Design does not disappoint......son! After the last installment, I was starting to wonder if Dearly Doting Dexter was going to grow into a bore. All that nonsense with the Dark Passenger going on a little hiatus took a lot out of our Dashing Debonaire Dexter and left him rather lacking.

This time out, we have Dear ol' Dex and his new bride, Rita honeymooning in gay Paris with Dexter starting to settle into married life. Upon returning to Miami, Dexter is called on to a case of dead bodies being left out in public in very strange art poses and decorations. Immediately, Dexter feels a little stirrings from the Dark Passanger and away we go, Dexter's interest is piqued and we have ourselves a case.

Along the way we get some more development into Deb and Chutsky and their relationship as well as some more with Rita's kids, Astor and Cody, whose own storyline and development is quickly becoming a favorite of mine in the series. This installment also brings back a key aspect of what was missing in the last book, Dexter doing things and figuring things. Part of what makes Dexter work is what he is, in the situation he's in. He's a killer, a predator, a thing with no soul (according to him though feel free to disagree) and having him put into the middle of police work, as the son of a respected police officer, with a sister who is an officer and the coup de gras, that he is a crime scene expert, puts him in the unique position to not only comment on the gruesome scenes he's called to, but to add some insight from that dark perspective.

My biggest gripe with the books is that it seems to lose a little focus towards the end, taking us on a ride that seems pointless and more like wasting time, and pages, until the pay-off. That aside, this is a solid entry, and good comeback from the last outing, into the Dexter series.

My Grade: B


Enhanced by Zemanta

Friday, October 8, 2010

Ed's Mini Book Review - A Dangerous Man

'CoverCover of A Dangerous Man: A NovelA Dangerous Man is the third and final book of Charlie Huston's Henry Thompson trilogy. To make a short story long, Henry Thompson starts out the trilogy as a former baseball prospect who doesn't make it to the bigs because of a broken leg. He then finds himself involved with Russian mobsters, crooked cops and notorious bank robbers who all claim he is in possession of something he has no clue about. The first book resolves those issues while the second book has him on the run and brings up new issues which all come to a head here, in the final installment.

Henry, through events I don't want to spoil in case you'd like to read the trilogy, is now a leg breaker for a Russian mobster. He's not happy with how things have turned out and looking to pills to dull life for him. That's until his boss tells him to watch over a young hot-shot baseball prospect with a wicked gambling habit. Oh, and did I mention this prospect was drafted by the Mets which brings Henry back to NYC, where his troubles all started?
I just eat this crime stuff up and Charlie Huston is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors but this installment felt a little flat to me. What makes me like Henry Thompson, that he is flawed and makes shaky decisions, wore on me as the series, and this book, went on. How long can he go with making the bad move and not have something planned out that goes a little right? I was also a little disappointed that some issues from the first book weren't addressed as he does end up back in New York after all. I am not sure of the planning of the series, but it seemed that the first book was written, originally, as a stand alone and the this book feels more like a sequel to the second book. Good stuff here but not great stuff.

My Grade: B-

Enhanced by Zemanta

Monday, October 4, 2010

Ed's Mini Book Review - The Murder or Roger Ackroyd

The Murder of Roger AckroydImage via Wikipedia
The second Agatha Christie book, and first Hercule Poirot book for me is this highly rated, but not well known, thriller with a twist that will rattle your knickers. This one had it all from red herrings to dubious characters to head scratching clues that don't seem to add up (to me anyway).

Now the setup is a little convoluted but it's worth it. Roger Ackroyd is a wealthy widower who has a step-son who burns money a little too quickly. Roger is also taking up a relationship with a widow who has just killed herself but not before leaving a letter to Roger. The narrator of the story is the town's doctor and good friend of Roger Ackroyd and before he can discuss the substance of the letter with his good friend the doctor, Roger is murdered and the letter mysteriously vanishes. Enter Hercule Poirot, who has recently retired and moved to town, next door to the good doctor no less, to take the case and conscript the doctor as his assistant.

Since this is my first Poirot novel, it was interesting to read him on the page as Christie wrote him as opposed to the versions of him that I have seen on screen by Albert Finney in Murder on the Orient Express and by Peter Ustinov in Evil Under the Sun, and now I am very curious to see how he is portrayed by David Suchet (pictured above) on the BBC series. I found him to be more like the Ustinov version and not like the quirky Finney version though I have heard in many of the books he is more like the oddball Finney version. Eh, you see for yourself and that I suggest you do. I don't want to give away any more of the book as I encourage you to read you some Christie. I totally, in a non valley girl way, loved this book. The twists, turns, false leads, and second guesses, all of it had my hooked. Much like my feelings on And Then There Were None, this is what a good old fashioned mystery novel should be.

My Grade: A

Enhanced by Zemanta