Book Review: “Silent Creed” by Alex Kava (Ryder Creed

silentcreedTitle:  Silent Creed

Author:  Alex Kava

Series:  Ryder Creed series #2

Synopsis (from bn.com):  Ryder Creed and his K9 search-and-rescue dogs return in the second installment of an exciting new series, teaming up once more with FBI profiler Maggie O’Dell in their riskiest case yet.

When Ryder Creed responds to a devastating mudslide in North Carolina, he knows that the difference between finding survivors and the dead is time. He and his sturdiest search-and-rescue dog, Bolo, get to work immediately, but the scene is rife with danger: continued rainfall prevents the rescue teams from stabilizing the land; toxic household substances spread by the crushing slide fill the area with hazardous waste; and the detritus and debris are treacherous for both man and dog to navigate. But most perilous are the secrets hidden under the mud and sludge—secrets someone would kill to protect. For this is no ordinary rescue mission. Among the buildings consumed by the landslide was a top-secret government research facility, and Creed has been hired to find what’s left of it.

Then rescuers recover the body of a scientist from the facility who was obviously dead before the landslide—killed by a gunshot to the head. The FBI sends Agent Maggie O’Dell to investigate, and she and Creed are soon caught in a web of lies, secrets, and murder that may involve not only the government facility, but decades-old medical experiments that are the subject of current congressional hearings. As more bodies are found under even more unusual circumstances, they come ever closer to exposing the truth—but with unknown forces working against them, Maggie, Creed, and the dogs are running out of time.

 

My thoughts:  For a series that I was quite leery about given the overall dog trainer theme, I am loving this series.   This second book in the series allows the reader a deeper dive into the life of somewhat mysterious dog trainer, Ryder Creed, and his background.

I am also enjoying getting to know the characters a bit better and seeing the relationship between Ryder and my old favorite character from Alex Kava’s first series, Maggie O’Dell, continue to develop.

I liked the overall storyline and plot of this story, but I wish the author would have spent a bit more time discussing and delving into the story of the lab/the experiments and the secrets behind that.  It was a good part of the story and felt a bit rushed for me.  A better balance between the story of the actual dog searches and this would have added some intrigue and excitement to the read.

Overall, another great series from a favorite author.  I will no doubt be getting book #3 in this series as soon as I get my lazy butt to the library.

And remember,

Books are life

Heather

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Fiction, Mystery, Thriller

Book Review: “Small Great Things” by Jodi Picoult

smallgreatthings

Title:  Small Great Things

Author:  Jodi Picoult

Synopsis (from bn.com):

Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years’ experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she’s been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene?

Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and, as a result, is charged with a serious crime. Kennedy McQuarrie, a white public defender, takes her case but gives unexpected advice: Kennedy insists that mentioning race in the courtroom is not a winning strategy. Conflicted by Kennedy’s counsel, Ruth tries to keep life as normal as possible for her family—especially her teenage son—as the case becomes a media sensation. As the trial moves forward, Ruth and Kennedy must gain each other’s trust, and come to see that what they’ve been taught their whole lives about others—and themselves—might be wrong.

With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candor, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion—and doesn’t offer easy answers. Small Great Things is a remarkable achievement from a writer at the top of her game.

 

My thoughts:  My ladies book club wanted to start getting more back to books (I know that sounds odd doesn’t it, but we all know how those ladies book clubs turn more into dinner and wonderful conversation and not about books . . .but anyway I digress), so this is what they chose.

I had mixed feelings at first as I have a love/hate relationship with Jodi Picoult’s books but I jumped right in with excitement.

I would love to say I absolutely loved the book as most reviews I have written say, however all I can say is that my love/hate relationship with this author continues.

First off, I think reading this particular book right now in the current political climate was just bad timing for me.  I’m burned out on social media posts, negativity, fighting, and all such things and this book about racial tensions didn’t help.

Overall the book was a very fast read, the story was intriguing and of course made you think and stretch your mind throughout which is of course paramount for a Picoult book.

On the more negative side, I must say being a healthcare worker I found much of the premise of the story a bit unbelievable and kept saying to myself – “first off this wouldn’t happen”.

One of my major issues with Picoult’s writing is that in my humble opinion she always attempts to touch on every single hot social issue in one book and it always seems quite a bit biased and stereotypical to me.  This book was very much the same – the characters were overly stereotyped I thought.

To top things off I found the ending absolutely ridiculous!  Talk about typing things up in one chapter in a nice, pretty, unbelievable bow.  Not good for me!

Overall a fast read that of course makes you think – but overly stereotyped characters and an ending that just made me scratch my head.

And remember,

Books are Life,

Heather

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Fiction, Uncategorized

Book Review: “Fireproof” by Alex Kava (Maggie O’Dell Series #10)

fireproof

Title:  Fireproof

Author:  Alex Kava

Series:  Maggie O’Dell series #10

 

Synopsis (from bn.com):

New York Times bestselling author Alex Kava returns in a blaze of glory with a gripping, action-packed thriller featuring special agent Maggie O’Dell,who is leading the search for a serial arsonist whose crimes threaten Maggie dangerously close to home.

When a building bursts into flames on a cold winter night in D.C., investigators see a resemblance to a string of recent fires in the area. There is one difference, however: This one has a human casualty. The local team insists they’re looking for a young white male, suffering from an uncontrollable impulse to act out his anger or sexual aggression. But when special agent Maggie O’Dell is called in, everything she sees leads her to believe that this is the work of a calculating and controlled criminal.

 

My thoughts:  Well it seems as if I am working my way through the Alex Kava series and now new Ryder Creed series  . . .

This is another great novel in the wonderful Maggie O’Dell series.  Main character Maggie O’Dell is of course fabulous . . . fast-paced storyline . . .

I do have one significant complaint about this book – the killer was so entirely obvious I had the book figured out by about a quarter of the way through it, which I never, ever am able to do.  I am in no way the type who ever figures out the mystery before the end, but this one was obvious.  It really was just too obvious and of course took quite a bit away from the book as there were huge holes in the storyline that just made the killer entirely too obvious.

Overall, another great Kava book . .. and I’m off to start Ryder Creed series #2.

And remember,

Books Are Life

Heather

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Detective/Police, Fiction, Mystery, Uncategorized

Book Review: “Breaking Creed” by Alex Kava (Ryder Creed series #1)

breakingcreed

Title:  Breaking Creed

Author:  Alex Kava

Series:  Ryder Creed series #1

Synopsis (from bn.com):  From the New York Times bestselling author of the Maggie O’Dell novels comes a thrilling new series featuring an ex-marine turned K9 rescue dog trainer…

Ryder Creed and his dogs have been making national headlines. They’ve intercepted several major drug stashes smuggled through Atlanta’s airport. But their newfound celebrity has also garnered some unwanted attention.

When Creed and one of his dogs are called in to search a commercial fishing vessel off the coast of Pensacola Beach, they discover a secret compartment. But the Colombian cartel’s latest shipment isn’t drugs. It’s human…

Meanwhile, FBI agent Maggie O’Dell is investigating a series of murders she suspects to be the work of a brutal assassin. By the time she uncovers a hit list with Creed’s name on it, it might be too late to help him. For someone is already on the way…

 

My thoughts:  I have been an Alex Kava fan for years – I absolutely love the Maggie O’Dell series.  I was a bit disappointed to see that she stopped writing the Maggie O’Dell series exclusively and had moved to a new Ryder Creed Series.  I was extremely reticent about the new series and honestly had no intention on starting the series as a story about a rescue dog and his trainer just didn’t fit me . . . but . . . WOW!  I was SO WRONG!

I absolutely loved this book and look forward to starting the next one already.  I really love that this series continues bringing us Maggie O’Dell and now Ryder working together on cases.

This new series has a great new main character in Ryder Creed – sexy, young, tough K9 trainer.

The story line is intriguing, fast paced, and gives the reader a super fast read.

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Detective/Police, Fiction, Mystery, Uncategorized

Book Review: “Stranded” by Alex Kava (Maggie O’Dell #11)

stranded

Title:  Stranded

Author:  Alex Kava

Series:  Maggie O’Dell #11

Synopsis (from bn.com): 

ONE MAN’S REST STOP IS ANOTHER MAN’S HUNTING GROUND

When FBI special agent Maggie O’Dell and her partner, Tully, discover the remains of a young woman in a highway ditch, the only clue is a map leading them to spot where they’ll find madman’s next victim.

As the body count rises, Maggie must race against the clock to unmask the monster terrorizing America’s highways, even if it means turning to a former foe for help. But as she gets closer to finding the killer, it becomes eerily clear that Maggie may be the ultimate target. . .

My thoughts:  Love, love, loved this book!  I read this Maggie O’Dell series years ago and realized recently that I hadn’t finished it – duh!  And Stranded reminded me how very good this series truly is.

The characters are great, the plot is exciting, fast-paced, sit on the edge of your seat.

In this novel the author introduces us to her latest character, Ryder Creed, who is ex-Marine turned dog trainer who is brought onto the scene in this plot to help with body recovery.   Ryder is the main character in the author’s next series of books – The Ryder Creed Series.  I was a bit skeptical about liking this new character – but I LOVE HIM and yes have already started reading the first book in that series . . . “Breaking Creed”.  Stay tuned for that review coming soon.

Overall a great, fast-paced psychological thriller for those that love fast action.

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

 

1 Comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Detective/Police, Fiction, Mystery, Uncategorized

Book Review: “Beach Bags and Burglaries” by Dorothy Howell (Haley Randolph Mystery #7)

 

beachbagsandburglaryTitle:  Beach Bags and Burglaries

Author:  Dorothy Howell

Series:  Haley Randolph Mystery #7

Synopsis (from bn.com):  Part-time sleuth and full-time fashionista Haley Randolph just won an all-expenses-paid vacay at the Rowan Resort. The island has everything Haley imagined: pristine beaches, posh accommodations, and possibly Brad Pitt. But trouble soon looms on the horizon when Jaslyn Gordon, a maid at the island resort, goes missing. And while practically looting the resort for a Sea Vixen beach bag, Haley of course finds the maid—on the beach. . .and clearly dead.

Everyone at the resort says Jaslyn’s death was just an accident, but Haley thinks there’s a lot going unsaid. Haley’s faced down clever criminals before and always come out on top, but this malicious murderer might be too crafty. And though she’s dying to get her hands on a Sea Vixen, she also wants to live long enough to be seen with it. . .

My thougths:  Ok, I’ve mentioned before that this isn’t my favorite cozy mystery series and I hate, hate giving badish reviews to books . . . but I have to admit openly that parts of this book just bugged me.  It’s not the writing, nor the story, nor the supporting characters . . . it is the main character herself, Haley Randolph that is just over the top to me, particularly in this book.  Wow – there were times I simply wanted to smack her across the face.  I know she is to be characterized as a young, 25 year old fashionista that is finding her way in life, but this book really brought out the selfish person this girl is.  And this time it really got to me.  I just got sick of the selfish statements from this character like god it’s good to be me, I’m great, etc etc.  Gag!

On a positive note however I enjoyed the setting of this book. The main characters were on a vacation at a luxury resort which overall was a fun location for a book.

I don’t like giving up on series . . . and I haven’t fully committed to letting this one go, but let’s just say I’m not rushing out to get the new releast.

Onward and upward,

And remember,

Books are Life

Heather

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Cozy, Cozy Mystery, Uncategorized

2017 Reading Challenge: Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2017

mount-tbr-2017

I am excited to again participate in this Mount TBR Reading Challenge sponsored by My Reader’s Block at the following link:

https://myreadersblock.blogspot.com/2016/11/2017-mount-tbr-challenge-sign-up.html

This is the challenge that I really, really, really need as I’m sure most of us readers do because I quite literally have piles and book shelves and closet shelves full of books that I need to get to reading.  Hopefully this helps.

So I’m participating at level Mount Blanc 24 books from you TBR Pile.

Here goes it . . .

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

Leave a comment

Filed under book challenges, Uncategorized