Chesapeake, OH, United States | Member Since 2012
Format: Audible Download/Kindle Whispersync for Voice
Heavenly Pleasures is the name of a Chocolate Shop run by a pair of sisters of Belgium extraction. They are located near Corinna Chapman's bakery and do very good business. Then Corinna finds out that they have been the focus of a series of unpleasant incidents involving their chocolates. Nothing dangerous, so far, so it is unlikely that they would be of interest to the police, and if the story becomes public knowledge then it might ruin their trade. They hire Corinna's partner (ex-Israeli soldier, current private eye) to try to find out who is trying to put then out of business.
This isn't the only mystery though around Insula, the Roman style building where Corinna has her bakery and apartment.
Corinna is intensely likeable with her whole-hearted enjoyment of the good things in life including bread, sex, chocolate and good company. The mystery is interesting enough; however, I really enjoy the cast of eccentrics who populate Corinna's world.
The narrator, Louise Siverson does an absolutely bang up job of reading this book. I couldn't imagine another voice as that of Corinna now.
I try not to read too many books in the same series in a row because I start to notice the authors little tics and twits. However, I got the first one (Earthly Delights) on a deal from Amazon/Audible and then had to buy the next two because I liked it so well. The following book (3rd) is Devil's Food.
I've listened to the three prior DI Mark Tartaglia books. I think the last one was released in 2011. I immediately bought the current book when I saw it listed on Audible. However, I was a bit disappointed in this police procedural.
DI Mark Tartaglia is awoken by the news that there was a murder in a upscale hotel, a hotel where he has just engaged in a one night stand. I'm not sure why that is even brought into the book because it shortly becomes clear that his sexual escapade has nothing to do with the murder.
Complications though ensure that Tartaglia's group instead are set to investigate the body of a man found in a burning car rather than the body at the hotel.
My frustration with this book had a lot to do with the plotting. Someone would be interrogating a witness and then would stop one question short-- the question that would have arose naturally from the previous responses. I might have forgiven this once, but it began to look like the author's method of sustaining suspense. Instead it points the reader toward the resolution.
I'm also not particularly fond of the narrator. He has read all of the Elena Forbes books and while I don't think his performance detracts from the books, I don't think it contributes to it either.
I actually put this book down in the middle because I had convinced myself that I knew What was going to happen. I picked it up again because it was just the right length for a cold winter's drive. I was wrong. Casey came up with an interesting plot that I enjoyed listening to.
Cops are being killed. The unit that Maeve Kerrigan works in is brought in to deal with this unthinkable series of deaths.
I don't want to give anything away except to say expect the unexpected.
The narrator as usual is excellent.
This is the second of the books in this series, I'm tempted to call it the Bobby Maiden series but the most interesting character in my opinion is Cindy Mars-Lewis, the cross dressing shaman who played a significant part in Cold Calling and will, according to the advance publicity, have a role in Night After Night.
Cindy is now working as a host on a national lottery show is snarky about the winners and makes some off the cuff comments about the fates of the winners that appear to come true. This brings him under media fire-- no light thing in the UK.
Meanwhile DI Bobby Maiden is being considered for promotion since his old boss was forced in retirement. But it appears that he is being framed for the death of a low level criminal. Grayle Underhill reappears as a reporter for, a magazine for those interested in occult experiences run by a grumpy retired school teacher.
Sean Barrett does the narration and he has thankfully toned down the New Jersey accent he gave Grayle in the first book-- seriously, she had been raised as the daughter of an academic with an international reputation who had lived and worked in New York before coming to England in search of her missing archaeologist sister. When he is on his own ground though with Welsh and English accents he is excellent and as the best narrators do, adds to the experience of the listener.
I've bought this book in paperback and Kindle so I knew what to expect when I started listening to it, but it kept me enthralled for most of New Years Day.
So, anyone who is listening, can we now have The Man in the Moss by Rickman in audio form soon please?
Pascha, the ghost of a deceased car thief who did not quite make it to the age of 25 before he was murdered, finds himself involved in another case. A young teacher has been kidnapped, the four children in her charge left in comas and Pascha seems to be the only one who cares. Martin, the coroner, is involved with his personal life leaving Pascha in a bit of a bind because he is the only living person that Pascha can communicate with directly.
Not quite the best but still good enough to be quite entertaining. Actually I picked up a copy of the paperback through Vine, then I bought the Kindle download and ended up listening to the Audio version, which I recommend as the best version. Read by MacLeod Andrews who as far as I am concerned is the voice of Pascha, it has good production values and and a nice snarky edge.
The beginning of this book is the 20 year old cold case of the first girlfriend of DC Maeve Kerrigan's obnoxious superior,DI Josh Derwent. Maeve is a character I know well from the previous three books, but Josh is given an interesting background. These characters are all wonderfully tough and interesting. I wouldn't want to work with them but I certainly enjoy reading about them.
Two women have been murdered in their apartments. There were similarities between the murders which suggested that one man was involved, a man that they voluntarily allowed into their homes. Maeve becomes involved into the investigation into the murders, trapped between her charismatic, brilliant boss, the surprisingly sympathetic (at times) Dewent and the abrasive female DI, who is Dewent's senior.
I was almost becoming afraid that Audible was not picking up this type of police procedural, so it was with relief that I found myself so wrapped up in listening to this one. It did not keep me up all night, but I did become annoyed when I had to shut my audio off and attend to someone else.
High marks for the narrator as well. All in all an enjoyable package for those who enjoy a bit of grit with their suspense.
Scott McGarth, a journalist on the downside of his career, becomes obsessed with the death of the daughter of a cult film maker, Stanislas Cordova - a man who hasn't been seen in public for more than thirty years.
This is a book with wheels within wheels. Information frequently is proven to be unreliable. Characters are not what they seem. McGarth's own life spins out of control. I really had a hard time putting the book down.
It probably could have been tightened up, it's a bit long and saggy in the final quarter, but I think it is still worth the read. I think the narrator added to the experience.
Thomas De Quincey, the author of essays Confessions of an English Opium Eater and On Murder Considered As One of the Fine Arts (among others), is one of the main characters in this historical mystery. His youngest daughter, Emily, is another. Late in his career De Quincey and his daughter are living in Edinburgh. He is impecunious and trying to recoup his fortunes by coming to London and doing what is essentially a book tour in which he would go to bookstores and sign copies of his latest book.
Meanwhile a murder has occurred-- in fact several murders. And they appear to be copycats of the famous1811 Ratcliff Highway Murders. These particularly bloody murders inspired De Quincey's essay on Murder. And it seems that De Quincey is being framed for these latter murders.
The author has done quite a good job in recreating the feel of the mid Victorian era. The plot was a bit sloppy in places, but I still thoroughly enjoyed listening to the book. The narrator was quite good as well. I particularly enjoyed the character of Emily De Quincey.
If you know anything about the life of Lisbet Borden after the conclusion of her famous trial, forget it. The chronology of events in this book (set in 1894) is about 10 years off and, yes, that really bugged me. However the events as reimagined by Cherie Priest including Lovecraft's Cthulu Mythos in part, fit well into the overall facts..
Maplecroft is the name of the house that Lisbet and Emma Borden moved to after the younger sister was acquitted of the murder of their father and step-mother. It is a fact that they both were very concerned about their personal safety. There's nothing really startling in this novel although Priest does provide some descriptive details. There is very good use made of Lizzy Borden's axe.
I do regret having listened to this on audio though instead of reading it. I don't think that Johanna Parker's voice (which worked very well in my opinion in her reading of the Sookie Stackhouse books) was particularly affective in this book. Her accent sounded "off" for the time and place. Roger Wayne's voice also seemed a little too light and young for the characters he was reading. Some more character in his voice would have been improved things a great deal, especially in reading the parts attributed to the 60ish year old Dr Seabury.
If you are inclined that way and know a bit about the Weird Tales background, the book does provide some fun hunt-the-reference moments.
The narrator, Justine Eyre, uses an odd sort of breathy voice style that did very little for me in terms of overcoming the faults of the book, but I did not find it prevented me from listening to the book.
A man is stabbed in the chest when he enters a women's shelter where his wife is staying. One of the two detectives who arrive shortly after on an unrelated case is able to save the man's life and he is taken to the hospital for further treatment. His wife, who stabbed him, is also transported to the same hospital for treatment.
In this book the detectives are asked to examine their assumptions about abusers and their victims. It's interesting at the start and at the end, but in the middle there is an episode of torture that was essentially tedious. It could have been powerful, but just went on too long. Sometimes less is more.
I gave up about 8 chapters into this book. By that time I was bored with all of her characters. They were all stereotypes from the villainous property owner/ crime boss, to his vapid clotheshorse of an adulterous wife, to the spoiled, foul mouthed daughter. Then there was DS Allie Shenton who started out pretty interesting until I realized that her initial stumble because she was wearing high heels meant that I was going to have to listen to descriptions of her trying on clothes rather than doing much policing. Oh, and she is having lustful thoughts about the villainous property owner/crime boss.
By the time I gave up, about an hour and a half into the book, there had also been six or seven sexual encounters of a rather dull and distasteful nature between various characters. I could have accepted that maybe this was some sort of an erotic mystery if the sex scenes had been more artfully done (and if there had been more than a hint that there was going to be an actual mystery). Oh, yes, and if they had been erotic.
I couldn't ding the narrator too, hard given that she didn't have much to work with. I am so thankful that this was part of the Kindle Unlimited program because I didn't have to feel bad about giving up on this book and going on to something more entertaining.
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