Posted in Detective, Mystery

I bought a book

I know when most of you read that, you’ll say “what else is new?”  But truly it is a memorable occasion.  I haven’t bought a book since Marie Bostwick’s The Promise Girls came out.  I still haven’t finished that yet which is unusual because I’m loving it.

So what happened?

Well, I’m an attorney- a trial attorney to be precise.  May and June I was trying cases back to back for weeks on end.  It didn’t leave much time for anything even things like grocery shopping, cleaning, eating…

So what book did I buy?

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Yup!!  This is one of my favorite series.  I love Lady Georgianna Rannoch!!!

I’m going to discipline myself to only read a couple of chapter a night.  Why you ask?  Because I’m starting trial on Monday.

Posted in Detective, Liked It, Mystery

The Chase

The Chase

Author: Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg

Genre: Mystery

Rating: LI

Synopsis:

Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg, bestselling authors of The Heist, return in this action-packed, exciting adventure featuring master con artist Nicolas Fox and die-hard FBI agent Kate O’Hare. And this time around, things go from hot to nuclear when government secrets are on the line.

Internationally renowned thief and con artist Nicolas Fox is famous for running elaborate and daring scams. His greatest con of all: convincing the FBI to team him up with the only person who has ever caught him, and the only woman to ever capture his attention, Special Agent Kate O’Hare. Together they’ll go undercover to swindle and catch the world’s most wanted—and untouchable—criminals.

Their newest target is Carter Grove, a former White House chief of staff and the ruthless leader of a private security agency. Grove has stolen a rare Chinese artifact from the Smithsonian, a crime that will torpedo U.S. relations with China if it ever becomes public. Nick and Kate must work under the radar—and against the clock—to devise a plan to steal the piece back. Confronting Grove’s elite assassins, Nick and Kate rely on the skills of their ragtag crew, including a flamboyant actor, a Geek Squad techie, and a band of AARP-card-carrying mercenaries led by none other than Kate’s dad.

A daring heist and a deadly chase lead Nick and Kate from Washington, D.C., to Shanghai, from the highlands of Scotland to the underbelly of Montreal. But it’ll take more than death threats, trained henchmen, sleepless nights, and the fate of a dynasty’s priceless heirloom to outsmart Fox and O’Hare.

Bluestocking’s Opinion: The one thing I love about novels from this pair, is that I’m guaranteed to have a good laugh. These books are for character analysis, it’s just pure fluffy entertainment. I got to say, I really like how lethal Kate is. I wish Stephanie Plum would have a little more of this kind of pluck rather than always needing to be rescued!

This is a great beach read.

Posted in Detective, Historical, Liked It

The Black Country

The Black Country

Teaser:

The blue dot in the center ringed a smaller black spot and reminded her of something, but it was out of context and it took her a long moment to place it.

And then she did, and it was an eye and the eye was looking at her.

Author: Alex Grecian

Genre: Mystery

Rating: LI

Synopsis:

The British Midlands. Inhabitants call it the “Black Country”—and with good reason. Bad things happen there.

When three members of a prominent family disappear from the Midlands—and a human eyeball is discovered in a bird’s nest—Scotland Yard’s Murder Squad is called in. But Inspector Walter Day and Sergeant Nevil Hammersmith have stepped into something much more bizarre and complicated than expected.

Superstitions abound in the intertwined histories of the villagers, including a local legend about a monster some claim to have seen. In addition, a mysterious epidemic is killing off the inhabitants, and the village itself is sinking into the coal mines below. Day and Hammersmith soon realize that they, too, are in over their heads. And the more they investigate, the more they fear that they may never be allowed to leave.

Bluestocking’s Opinion: Wow!! There were so many elements to this story. I the local monster and epidemic were completely independent events, but it turns out that there was some overlap between the two. I was really surprised by the reason behind the disappearance of the family. Actually it was more like very disturbed. I couldn’t believe what actually happened to the missing boy. Who would imagine that a child would be capable of so much evil!!! In a way, I’m glad that the child was “taken care of” at the end. I can’t even imagine how policemen, particularly in that time, would have dealt with something like this. There didn’t seem to be as many psychotic people back then. Hopefully my opinion, makes you decide to pick this one up!!

Posted in Detective, Liked It, Mystery

The Heist

The Heist

Author: Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg

Genre: Detective

Rating: LI

Synopsis:

~ The Caper: a never before published mini adventure featuring Kate O’Hare and Nicolas Fox, the characters from The Heist
~ High Quality Euro Stickers: Every hardcover edition of THE HEIST contains two euro stickers: I “heart” Plum and The Con is On!

From Janet Evanovich, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Stephanie Plum novels, and Lee Goldberg, bestselling author and television writer for Monk, comes the first adventure in an electrifying new series featuring an FBI agent who always gets her man, and a fearless con artist who lives for the chase.

FBI Special Agent Kate O’Hare is known for her fierce dedication and discipline on the job, chasing down the world’s most wanted criminals and putting them behind bars. Her boss thinks she is tenacious and ambitious; her friends think she is tough, stubborn, and maybe even a bit obsessed. And while Kate has made quite a name for herself for the past five years, the only name she’s cared about is Nicolas Fox—an international crook she wants in more ways than one.

Audacious, handsome, and dangerously charming, Nicolas Fox is a natural con man, notorious for running elaborate scams on very high-profile people. At first he did it for the money. Now he does it for the thrill. He knows that the FBI has been hot on his trail—particularly Kate O’Hare, who has been watching his every move. For Nick, there’s no greater rush than being pursued by a beautiful woman . . . even one who aims to lock him up. But just when it seems that Nicolas Fox has been captured for good, he pulls off his greatest con of all: he convinces the FBI to offer him a job, working side by side with Special Agent Kate O’Hare.

Problem is, teaming up to stop a corrupt investment banker who’s hiding on a private island in Indonesia is going to test O’Hare’s patience and Fox’s skill. Not to mention the skills of their ragtag team made up of flamboyant actors, wanted wheelmen, and Kate’s dad. High-speed chases, pirates, and Toblerone bars are all in a day’s work . . . if O’Hare and Fox don’t kill each other first.

Bluestocking’s Learned Opinion: Janet Evanovich knows how to write a thoroughly entertaining book. I’d never heard of Lee Goldberg prior to this series, but that’s ok. The due wrote a fun read. Kate O’Hare is imaginative. Who would of thought of running into a criminal with one’s car as a way to catch him. Nick has definitely met his match in Kate in more ways than one. I smell a romance coming. I just hope this pair doesn’t do the whole Plum-Morelli-Ranger menage-a-trois. There is a second book coming out in the series. I can’t wait to read it. Oh! I got to say, I really like Kate’s dad. Talk about someone who would go to hell and back for his little girl!!!

Posted in Detective, Liked It, Mystery, Rated LI

Murder on the Orient Express

On the way back from Syria, Hercule Poirot takes the Orient Express. Oddly enough the train is very crowded for the time of year. While on the trip, Poirot is approached by a Mr. Ratchett who tries to hire Poirot to be his man sort of. Poirot doesn’t like the look of Ratchett and refuses. On the second night of the journey, Poirot hears a noise coming from Ratchett’s compartment, but later hears the man respond to the conductor’s question that nothing was the matter. A number of strange things happen that night including a woman in a scarlet kimono who bumps the door to his compartment. Oh yes! the train is stopped due to a snow storm.
The next morning, Poirot discovers that Ratchett is dead a victim of 12 stab wounds. The wounds are all different types-some deep and some shallow, some by a right handed person and some by a left handed person. Trying to solve the crime is quite a job because there seems to be a lot of evidence. It points to various people, and when part of the evidence is found in Poirot’s own cabin, its clear than some if not all of the evidence has been planted.
The strange thing about all the people in this particular car is the amount of nationalities present- Italian, Swedish, Russion, German, and a Scotsman. The only place to find that kind of diversity would be America. As it turns out, Ratchett’s true name is Cassetti. Years before, Cassetti kidnapped a 3 year old named Daisy Armstrong who was also an heiress. He asked for ransom, but killed the child anyway. The girl’s mother went into premature labor and died along with the child. The girl’s father committed suicide. The maid was suspected and jumped out of the window. She was cleared later on.

I’m not going to tell you who did it. I hope I told you enough to intrigue you! This was a convoluted mystery.

Read more…

Posted in Advanced Review, Detective, Liked It, Mystery

Dare to Die

by Carolyn Hart
This book is rated LI
This is the 19th book in the Death on Demand series. For those visitors for the Ultimate Blog Party, this is an advanced review meaning that I received this book from the author/publisher/publicist prior to the release date, which is March 31, 2009. What this means is that I won’t spoil the ending of the book. My policy is that I spoil books that are already on the market.
Annie Darling is the owner of Death on Demand which is a specialty mystery bookstore. She and her husband Max are eagerly awaiting the restoration of their home on the island. Things in the town are quite until a woman named Iris returns to the island- in the rain, alone, and on a bicycle.
It turns out that Iris left the island 10 years ago, after the death of her classmate Jocelyn Howard. Iris has returned after battling her demons with drugs. She come to make amends for the past. Annie befriends Iris and invites her to their party at the pavilion which was the site of Jocelyn’s death years ago. Stranger still, all of Jocelyn’s classmates still live in the town and will be present at the party. Well lightening strikes twice, Annie finds Jocelyn’s body later on that evening.
Well this complicates things considerably. Iris’ death was clearly not an accident. And it’s beginning to seem as though Jocelyn’s death wasn’t an accident either. In order to solve this murder, Annie and Max will have to take a walk down memory lane. Jocelyn Howard was a beautiful, talented girl- the sun around which everyone revolved. Someone clearly resented being in her orbit.
This was a really good book. I didn’t figure it out until the end. I forgot how rough high school was. Everyone trying to fit in to have friends. I’m glad I don’t have to repeat that portion of my life again.

Posted in Detective, Liked It, Mystery

The Mysteries Affairs at Styles

This my dear readers is the first Agatha Christie mystery published. It is also the first Hercule Poirot novel. I believe this answers one of the questions on one of the quizzes or tests that I created.

The cast
Capt. Hastings (the narrator)- he is on sick leave from the miliatary
Hercule Poirot- old friend of Hastings; he is in exile from Belgium
Chief Inspector Japp of Scotland Yar
Emily Inglethorp- the victim
Alfred Inglethorp-her much younger husband
John Cavendish, the elder stepson
Mary Cavendish, John’s spouse
Lawrence Cavendish,- John’s younger brother
Evelyn Howard- companion to the victim
Cynthia Murdoch- friend of the family
Dr. Bauerstein- toxicologist.

After an evening of entertaining, Emily Inglethorp is found poisoned in her locked bedroom. It turns out to be a case of strychnine poisoning. Strychnine is an alkaloid used as pesticides for rodents. During this time period, strychnine was used in medications as stimulant, a laxative, and treatment for stomach ailments. It seems everyone is a suspect- here gold digging husband, companion, best friend- it seems everyone has a reason for wanting dear Emily dead and gone.

The suspicion falls on the younger husband, naturally of course, because he gains the most under the will. Hastings calls in Poirot to help solve this befuddling crime. He discovers that early that day Emily was heard arguing with a man either her husband or stepson. Following this argument she made a new will which seems to be missing. The will had been in a document case in her bedroom. Two people are discovered to have bought strychnine days before the murder- Alfred and John. The only hitch in suspecting Alfred is that he left earlier that evening and spent the night in a nearby village; so he was not present to administer the poison. Then there is the next hurdle to overcome, which is that no one seems to know how the poison was administered. As typical in her novels, the police nab the wrong person, but Hercule Poirot always gets his man.

I find it difficult to figure out who’s done it in the Hercule Poirot novel. It’s not the logical deduction that’s the problem. It’s just the sheer amount of characters in the book. I mean keeping track of who touched what, when is quite difficult, especially as Poirot seems to interrogate people at random. But there were a fair amount of red herrings. As is his style, Poirot sets people up three ways from Christmas in order to entrap someone else. There are many times I found myself smacking my forehead. As a character Poirot is interesting. He operates, much like Miss Marple, by setting people up to under estimate him. It is constantly stated in this series that British people distrust foreigners. The British treat him as inferior. I suppose he is a great deal to blame as he will insist on acting like a fussy old lady. But underestimating him proves to be people’s undoing.