I give this Cork O'Connor book my "best story in a series" award. It was worth the wait....and left me wanting to turn another page. The book stands alone (so if it is your first William Kent Krueger read, you won't be left wondering about references to earlier books.) But Krueger only provides O'Connor family background when background is essential (so if you have, like me, read all of the others in the series, you won't get bored by the repetition.) The Ojibwa mystic tradition is interestingly presented and makes me want to learn more; the beauty and wildness of northern Minnesota is drawn with a brilliant word palette reminding me of personal soul-searching times spent paddling the Boundary Waters and walking the shores of Lake Gichigami. "The opposite of love is not hate but fear."
I've enjoyed Tana French's books. In "Faithful Place" the narration puts you into Frank's life in a very powerful story of growing up in grim Dublin circumstances. While similar to the trials of the very poor described by Frank McCourt in "Angela's Ashes", French's modern day story provides an unromantic view of family and local community dynamics. The reader really breathed life into the story. As I experienced this book out of order (having already finished the fourth book in the Dublin murder squad series) I can say that "Faithful Place" is the most powerful of the four I've read so far.
The story is intended to provide a glimpse of the price to pay for lack of attention to specific terrorist threats against the US technology infrastructure. It deals with a serious subject with a potentially scary (in fact horrific) outcomes for failure to address critical security laspses. It is not written by a polished author; it is broadly stroked and painted with morality laced platitudes throughout. The author amateurishly describes an "ideal" society and the life/death decisions that (in the author's opinion) will be required for the rightous to survive. Still, the book IS thought provoking and worth a reading. It made me want to know more about the technologies at play and if the "hardening" of infrasture has been left to chance.
Ok, I like the book and I will read more of Tana French's work. It was very real world, but (not to provide any spoilers) was too much like the real world in the end.
The books in the Reacher series provide generally fast-paced material and don't demand too much from the reader. Like his earlier books in the series, Child is still working on nuance regarding the elements of a mystery story. Persuader also requires the reader to accept a larger dose of fantastic survival skills on the part of Reacher. Because I have read the latest two books in this series (out of order and prior to deciding to read the series from the beginning), I know that Child gets better at plot formation, learns to better present/reveal mystery elements, and to reduce the readers need to accept fantastic situations, I will likely move on to the next book in the series.
Elizabeth Peters style is quite different. The various sections are presented as case notes and descriptive narratives from the diary entries and other manuscripts of the various family members sharing the experience being described. A very British attitude and dialogue is conveyed....and the book is written as an archeological adventure in Eygpt of the 1930s. I had a bit of trouble following the story.....but that is possibly also due to audio difficulties (as I listened to the story during a long road trip.)
Tom Clancy's writing in "Against All Enemies" takes me back to "The Hunt for Red October": a reasonably plausible storyline, a heroic protagonist (but not to the point of unbelievable super heroism), and a gripping pace. Though the likely outcome is predictable very early in the book and the desire for (and delivery of) a positive (relative to alternative scenarios) resolution of the story is provided without much disguise, I enjoyed the story and will likely ponder the issues Clancy raises regarding protecting/watching our southern boundaries over the next few weeks. This book may bring me back to Clancy.
I like the P.J. Tracy books because they are set (primarily) in Minnesota and Wisconsin. "Off the Grid" fit the bill and even had Native American elements that I usually attribute to William Kent Krueger. A fast, enjoyable, young adult feeling read.
Near the end of the book, I had the feeling that the rest of the book was somewhere beside me.....but when I looked, it wasn't really there. Truly, I checked to be certain that I had not inadvertently purchased an abridgement. Yes, the story fragments that are told show Evans at his best. Yes, the story is gripping. In fact, it is indeed because it is gripping that the fairytale ending is a bit of a letdown. What is the meaning of the burning elk's antlers and eyes? Where does Skye twist fate? When and how did Ed die? Why all the unwoven threads? A beautiful story unfulfilled. Still.....worth five stars. The parts of the story that exist are very well written.
Once started, the story of the Hummingbird's Daughter, her life, the lives of her family and the people around her, the times, the misery, the impossible suffering and the life that emerges....move you to travel the whole distance to its conclusion. I plan to read the Queen of America as soon as recover. I dream of flying like Teriseta but know I have not the constitution to suffer as well.
Sandford once again turns out a thriller. This Flowers story was consumed in two sittings, on a trip to Bemidji over the weekend. Virgil is an even more likable (and believable) character than Davenport ever was. Like real life, it left one (fairly important) dangling line. Food for thought between "Mad River" and his next book which will not be published soon enough.
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