Saturday, October 31, 2020

Happy Halloween!!

 Some people really go all out!  These pictures are of one house at the end of our street!!!

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Books 19-26

 Missing Justice by Alafair Burke

Missing Justice (Samantha Kincaid, #2) by Alafair Burke

Deputy District Attorney Samantha Kincaid is back at work after an attempt on her life and a promotion into the Major Crimes Unit. When the husband of Portland, Oregon, city judge Clarissa Easterbrook reports his wife missing and Samantha is called out on the case, she assumes her only job is to make the district attorney look good until the judge turns up. When the police discover evidence of foul play, however, Samantha finds herself unearthing secrets in Clarissa’s professional and private lives — secrets that not only Clarissa, but others, wanted to stay hidden.
The police department is committed to building a case against the man they believe is responsible, but Samantha continues to pursue an investigation into her own unanswered questions.
When her search for the truth leads her to corruption at the highest levels of the city’s power structure and the lingering personal tolls of a crime that occurred decades ago, Samantha realizes that her quest for justice could cost her not only her job but her life.
I didn't realize that this was the second book in the Samantha Kincaid series.  There were little snippets in this book that referred to the first book which explained a few things about Samantha. It was an enjoyable read although, at times, there was a little too much legal jargon.  It illustrates the struggle she faces to succeed in her new position, to be taken seriously in a male dominated office.  To stand up to her dad, her bosses and the police officers she works with.  It doesn't help her that, at times, she is pretty reckless. What starts out as a very cut and dried case turns out to be anything but!  

The Girl Who Lived Twice by David Lagercrantz
When Mikael Blomkvist needs to identify who died with his phone number in his pocket and whose last words spelled danger for important people, there's only one person who can help: Lisbeth Salander-the fierce, unstoppable girl with the dragon tattoo.  But Lisbeth has vanished.  She's sold her apartment in Stockholm.  She's gone dark.  No one knows where she is, and no one is aware that at long last she's got her primal enemy, her twin sister Camilla, squarely in her sights. In the end, it will be Blomkvist-in a moment of unimaginable self-sacrifice-who will make it possible for Lisbeth to face the most important battle of her life and, finally, to put her past to rest.
I guess it's unfair to compare the last books by David Lagercrantz to the books by Stieg Larsson. For me they just don't measure up to the first three, but if you are going to continue the Millenium series I feel they have to measure up.  Lisbeth is the main character in the books and her presence was very lacking in this book.  There was so much of the book dedicated to the Mount Everest expedition and not enough on Lisbeth.  I have read that this is the last book in the series and maybe it isn't.  We'll have to wait and see!!  

Dreamless by Jorgen Brekke
Dreamless (Odd Singsaker, #2) by Jørgen Brekke
A promising young singer has been murdered, her body found in a forest clearing during a snowstorm.  Her corpse has been elaborately, gruesomely staged-her larynx cut out and an antique music box placed carefully atop her body.  The music box plays a mysterious lullaby that sounds familiar but that no one can quite place.  With the blizzard overtaking  the city, Chief Inspector Odd Singsaker of the Trondheim Police Department is called in to investigate. The snow has, alas, all but wiped out any clues that the crime scene might hold.
When another young girl, also known for her melodic singing voice, suddenly goes missing while out walking her dog.  Singsaker fears the worst.  In the course of the investigation, he uncovers a connection between both cases and a centuries-old balled called "The Golden Peace."  This obscure ballad, written by a mysterious composer in the seventeenth century, promises the deepest, sweetest sleep to the listener.
With his own personal life in turmoil, Singsaker must somehow find the connection between the victims, the killer, and the ancient lullaby.  Somewhere, buried in the history of the ballad and its composer, is the detail that might help Singsaker find both the latest missing girl before time runs out and the elusive killer who will stop at nothing to get his hands on this perfect lullaby.
This book tells two stories,  alternating between 1767 in Trondheim, Norway, and current day Trondheim, connected by an old lost ballad.  I didn't realize this is the second book  in a series when I read it but it stands on its own just fine.  The ending makes it quite obvious that there will be another book. It was quite gruesome in parts but gives a good idea what the murderer is wrestling with.  It was a good book and I wouldn't mind reading the next book.

The Cavendon Luck by Barbara Taylor Bradford

It is 1938 in England, and Miles and Cecily Ingham have led the family in bringing the Cavendon estate back from the brink of disaster.  But now, with the arrival of World War II, Cavendon Hall will face its biggest challenge yet. It is a challenge that will push the Inghams and Swanns to protect one another and the villagers, and reveal their true capacity for survival and rebirth.
This is the third and last book in a series.  I haven't read the first two but I don't think it really mattered, although it was difficult at times to sort out all the characters.  I found that the book was a lot of fluff about rich, beautiful people.  Given the subject matter I found it too idealistic and gave the impression that everything will be okay because we are Inghams and Swanns. Hardly realistic!!

The Real Katie Lavender by Erica James
At 30, Katie Lavender thinks she is better than most when it comes to dealing with life's surprises.  But when she gets a request to visit a solicitor, she's not expecting the dramatic turn her life is about to take.  There, she receives a letter from her deceased mother that changes everything she ever knew about herself.
I enjoyed this book. It was a very easy read and I read it very quickly. This is the story of a rich, disfunctional family that gets turned on its head when Katie arrives. Of course, it all turns out well in the end!!

Killing Me Softly by Bianca Sloane
On a bitterly cold January evening, Tracy Ellis went for a jog along Chicago’s snowy lakefront and disappeared. Her body was discovered days later, her beautiful face bashed in with a rock. Police determine her brutal death to be a mugging gone wrong and drop the matter into their cold case files.
Over a year later, Tracy’s sister, Sondra, still can’t come to grips with what happened. She throws herself into her work as a documentary filmmaker to try and forget the cruelty of her sister’s death. However, a chance encounter with a man from Tracy’s past rips the wound open and sends Sondra on a desperate search for answers about the secrets from her sister’s life that may have led to her death.
As Sondra struggles to uncover what happened to Tracy, she’s launched into a tangled web of deceit and danger that put her on a collision course with life and death…
I really enjoyed this book.  It had some pretty gruesome, disgusting parts that gave you a look at a real abuser.  It had many twists and turns that really kept my attention.  Even though there was a bit of an incling the ending was quite surprising to me.  Definitely would recomend this book.

A Daughter's Choice by Cathy Sharp

Kathy Cole refuses to stay at home with her bitter, drunken father and instead is determined to do her bit for the men in the Great War by trainiHe doesn't initially take much notice of the young, innocent athy and she knows it's wrong to think of Tom as anything other than a friend, especially as she's promised to Billy Ryan back home in the East End.
However, Kathy and Tom find themselves thrown together and they become closer than they should.  But when the war is finally over, Kathy makes a life-changing decision with disastrous consequences...
This was an easy read.  Lots of things happening to Kathy but she seems to come out okay even though she makes some terrible choices. I did find it interesting though.

The Winter Sea by Di Morrissey
Escaping an unhappy marriage and an unsatisfactory job, Cassie Holloway moves to the little Australian coastal town of Whitby Point. There she meets the Aquino family, whose fishing business was founded by their ancestor, Giuseppe, an Italian immigrant, some ninety years before. Life for Cassie on the south west coast is sweet as she sets up a successful restaurant and falls in love with Giuseppe's great grandson Michael. But when the family patriarch dies, a devastating family secret is revealed which threatens to destroy her dreams. Cassie's future happiness now rests with her quest for the truth.
This book tells two stories, one from the past and one in the present, that share a long buried connection. Starting in Italy in1906 and moving to Australia in 2011. The timelines ultimately intersect revealing a family secret with implications affecting the present day.
I found it an easy and enjoyable read and wouldn't mind reading another book by this author.