Dearly, Beloved (Gone With The Respiration #2) by Lia Habel

Book Description:

Published: September 25, 2012

Can the living coexist with the living dead?

That’s the question that has New Victorian society fiercely divided ever since the mysterious plague known as “The Laz” hit the city of New London and turned thousands into walking corpses. But while some of these zombies are mindless monsters, hungry for human flesh, others can still think, speak, reason, and control their ravenous new appetites.

Just ask Nora Dearly, the young lady of means who was nearly kidnapped by a band of sinister zombies but valiantly rescued by a dashing young man . . . of the dead variety.

Nora and her savior, the young zombie soldier Bram Griswold, fell hopelessly in love. But others feel only fear and loathing for the reanimated dead. Now, as tensions grow between pro- and anti-zombie factions, battle lines are being drawn in the streets. And though Bram is no longer in the New Victorian army, he and his ex-commando zombie comrades are determined to help keep the peace. That means taking a dangerous stand between The Changed, a radical group of sentient zombies fighting for survival, and The Murder, a masked squad of urban guerrillas hellbent on destroying the living dead. But zombies aren’t the only ones in danger: Their living allies are also in The Murder’s crosshairs, and for one vengeful zealot, Nora Dearly is the number one target.

As paranoia, prejudice, and terrorist attacks threaten to plunge the city into full-scale war, Nora’s scientist father and his team continue their desperate race to unlock the secrets of “The Laz” and find a cure. But their efforts may be doomed when a mysterious zombie appears bearing an entirely new strain of the virus—and the nation of New Victoria braces for a new wave of the apocalypse.

Lia Habel’s spellbinding, suspenseful sequel to Dearly, Departed takes her imaginative mash-up of period romance, futuristic thriller, and zombie drama to a whole new level of innovative and irresistible storytelling.

Review –

It had been some time since I had read the prev book in this series, Dearly Departed, and it took me several pages to pick up the momentum and then I was disappointed. I liked the first book so much more and I can’t really say why, it’s just that this one didn’t “grab” me. I think having six narrators doing chapters was just too many and the flow of the story suffered. I WILL most likely read the next installment just to see what happens but it won’t be at the top of my “to be read list”.

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Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin #1) by Robin LaFever

Book Description

April 3, 2012

Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.
Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

Review –

This was a free digital book and when I started it I had so many other books ( paper, digital and audio) going that I didn’t give my full attention to it.  But as my other readings and listenings dwindled I devoted more time to this book and found I rather liked it. I don’t know if I’ll seek out the others in the series but it’s a possibility. It was an interesting story with unique characters and had good descriptive passages.

November 24, 2014   I’ve decided that I WILL continue with this series in the New Year.

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Click-Clack the Rattle Bag by Neil Gaiman

Product Description:

Click-Clack the Rattlebag” is your Halloween treat from Neil Gaiman and Audible, free through October 31. It’s not available anywhere else, and for a limited time, each download from Audible benefits educational charities at DonorsChoose.org.
A few words from Neil: “Why tell ghost stories? Why read them or listen to them? Why take such pleasure in tales that have no purpose but, comfortably, to scare?
“I don’t know. Not really. It goes way back. We have ghost stories from ancient Egypt, after all, ghost stories in the Bible, classical ghost stories from Rome (along with werewolves, cases of demonic possession, and of course, over and over, witches). We have been telling each other tales of otherness, of life beyond the grave, for a long time; stories that prickle the flesh and make the shadows deeper and, most important, remind us that we live, and that there is something special, something unique and remarkable, about the state of being alive. Happy Halloween!”
“‘What kind of story would you like me to tell you?’ ‘Well,’ he said, thoughtfully, ‘I don’t think it should be too scary, because then when I go up to bed, I will just be thinking about monsters the whole time. But if it isn’t just a little bit scary, then I won’t be interested. And you make up scary stories, don’t you?'”
So begins this subtle, witty, deceptive little tale from master storyteller Neil Gaiman. Lock the doors, turn off the lights, and enjoy!

Review –

2014- This story was again offered free so I listened to it again. I don’t think there were any charities involved this year.

It was near Halloween and I thought it would be a good spooky story.    I was very disappointed.  It was not scary at all(to me) so I only gave it three stars on GoodReads.

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Horns by Joe Hill

Book Description

January 30, 2010

Ignatius Perrish spent the night drunk and doing terrible things. He woke up the next morning with a thunderous hangover, a raging headache . . . and a pair of horns growing from his temples.

At first Ig thought the horns were a hallucination, the product of a mind damaged by rage and grief. He had spent the last year in a lonely, private purgatory, following the death of his beloved, Merrin Williams, who was raped and murdered under inexplicable circumstances. A mental breakdown would have been the most natural thing in the world. But there was nothing natural about the horns, which were all too real.

Once the righteous Ig had enjoyed the life of the blessed: born into privilege, the second son of a renowned musician and younger brother of a rising late-night TV star, he had security, wealth, and a place in his community. Ig had it all, and more—he had Merrin and a love founded on shared daydreams, mutual daring, and unlikely midsummer magic.

But Merrin’s death damned all that. The only suspect in the crime, Ig was never charged or tried. And he was never cleared. In the court of public opinion in Gideon, New Hampshire, Ig is and always will be guilty because his rich and connected parents pulled strings to make the investigation go away. Nothing Ig can do, nothing he can say, matters. Everyone, it seems, including God, has abandoned him. Everyone, that is, but the devil inside.

Review –
I don’t know what I expected when I started listening to this book by Joe Hill(Stephen King’s son) but what I got was a freaky, dark fantasy about a young man  waking up the morning after a drunken party with horns growing out of his head. He discovers that the horns somehow give him the power to make people do things and  when he touches them he can see all the bad things in their past. He has been blamed for the death of his girlfriend ten years earlier but his guilt could never be proven but the whole town thinks he did it. His brother, Terry, under the influence of the horns tells him who really did kill her and that sets the course for the rest of the book. It is about revenge and justice.
I liked it very much but not as much as I thought I would.
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Road Rage by Stephen King and Richard Matheson

Product Details

  • Audible Audio Edition
  • Listening Length: 2 hours and 26 minutes
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: HarperAudio
  • Audible.com Release Date: February 24, 2009
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001U2MTDS

Road Rage unites Richard Matheson’s classic “Duel” and the contemporary work it inspired–two power-packed short stories by three of the genre’s most acclaimed authors. “Duel,” an unforgettable tale about a driver menaced by a semi truck, was the source for Stephen Spielberg’s acclaimed first film of the same name. “Throttle,” by Stephen King and Joe Hill, is a duel of a different kind, pitting a faceless trucker against a tribe of motorcycle outlaws, in the simmering Nevada desert. Their battle is fought out on twenty miles of the most lonely road in the country, a place where the only thing worse than not knowing what you’re up against, is slowing down . . .

 

Review –

Richard Matheson’s story, Duel, was made into a television movie and later into a full length big screen production, starring Dennis Weaver, in 1971. I’ve seen the movie several times and it always gets my adrenaline going. The big old  tanker truck driven by a mysterious man we never see, to this day creeps me out and I try to stay from any and all trucks if im on the Interstate.  I had the audio version of this story and it was great. 

The second story was entitled Throttle also has a faceless trucker but this time he is “dueling”  an outlaw motorcycle gang and I didn’t really care for it.

 

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Cop Town by Karin Slaughter

Book Description

June 24, 2014
Karin Slaughter, author of the bestselling Will Trent novels, is widely acclaimed as “one of the best crime novelists in America” (The Washington Post). Now she delivers her first stand-alone novel: an epic story of a city in the midst of seismic upheaval, a serial killer targeting cops, and a divided police force tasked with bringing a madman to justice.Atlanta, 1974: As a brutal murder and a furious manhunt rock the city’s police department, Kate Murphy wonders if her first day on the job will also be her last. She’s determined to defy her privileged background by making her own way—wearing a badge and carrying a gun. But for a beautiful young woman, life will be anything but easy in the macho world of the Atlanta PD, where even the female cops have little mercy for rookies. It’s also the worst day possible to start given that a beloved cop has been gunned down, his brothers in blue are out for blood, and the city is on the edge of war.Kate isn’t the only woman on the force who’s feeling the heat. Maggie Lawson followed her uncle and brother into the ranks to prove her worth in their cynical eyes. When she and Kate, her new partner, are pushed out of the citywide search for a cop killer, their fury, pain, and pride finally reach the boiling point. With a killer poised to strike again, they will pursue their own line of investigation, risking everything as they venture into the city’s darkest heart.Relentlessly paced, acutely observed, wickedly funny, and often heartbreaking, Cop Town is Karin Slaughter’s most powerful novel yet—a tour de force of storytelling from our foremost master of character, atmosphere, and suspense.

Review –
This is a very well written stand-alone novel by Karin Slaughter, who is known for her Will Trent Series.
It takes place in Atlanta, Georgia in 1974 when women were new to police departments and blacks barely tolerated. It is realistic and the bad language and four letter words are plentiful but the story wouldn’t be realistic without them. 
A fantastic read and another win for Karin Slaughter,
I gave it 5 stars *****
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Destroyer Angel (Anna Pigeon #18) by Nevada Barr

Book Description

April 1, 2014

Anna Pigeon, a ranger for the U.S. Park Services, sets off on vacation—an autumn canoe trip in the to the Iron Range in upstate Minnesota. With Anna is her friend Heath, a paraplegic; Heath’s fifteen-year-old daughter, Elizabeth; Leah, a wealthy designer of outdoor equipment; and her daughter, Katie, who is thirteen. For Heath and Leah, this is a shakedown cruise to test a new cutting edge line of camping equipment. The equipment, designed by Leah, will make camping and canoeing more accessible to disabled outdoorsmen.

On their second night out, Anna goes off on her own for a solo evening float on the Fox River.  When she comes back, she finds that four thugs, armed with rifles, pistols, and knives, have taken the two women and their teenaged daughters captive. With limited resources and no access to the outside world, Anna has only two days to rescue them before her friends are either killed or flown out of the country.

Review –

I’ve read every Anna Pigeon book ever written but I had my doubts about this one when I started reading. Fortunately, my doubts were for nothing because this book is one of the author’s best works.  This one was grisly, violent (it takes real scum to shot a dog) and darker than her usual books but the location, the characters, and the story line are all interwoven into a story that had me turning pages well in the early morning hours.

I’m ready for the next one.

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Not a Drop to Drink(Not a Drop to Drink #1) by Mindy McGinnis

Book Description

September 24, 2013

Fans of classic frontier survival stories, as well as readers of dystopian literature, will enjoy this futuristic story where water is worth more than gold. New York Times bestselling author Michael Grant says Not a Drop to Drink is a debut “not to be missed.” With evocative, spare language and incredible drama, danger, and romance, Mindy McGinnis depicts one girl’s journey in a frontierlike world not so different from our own.

Teenage Lynn has been taught to defend her pond against every threat: drought, a snowless winter, coyotes, and most important, people looking for a drink. She makes sure anyone who comes near the pond leaves thirsty—or doesn’t leave at all. Confident in her own abilities, Lynn has no use for the world beyond the nearby fields and forest. But when strangers appear, the mysterious footprints by the pond, nighttime threats, and gunshots make it all too clear Lynn has exactly what they want, and they won’t stop until they get it. . . .

 

Review –

I had been wanting to read this book for a very long time and finally found it for free through Overdrive and the Virtual Library system and loved it.

The characters, story line and actions in the book were all believable and very well written and there was a part that I wasn’t expecting and it broke my heart. (I cry at the drop of a hat) If you are a fan of the dystopian or post-apocalyptic  genre, this is the book for you.

 Can’t wait to read the next installment.

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Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death (Agatha Raisin Mysteries #1) by M C Beaton

Book Description

January 20, 2003

Putting all her eggs in one basket, Agatha Raisin gives up her successful PR firm, sells her London flat, and samples a taste of early retirement in the quiet village of Carsely. Bored, lonely and used to getting her way, she enters a local baking contest: Surely a blue ribbon for the best quiche will make her the toast of the town. But her recipe for social advancement sours when Judge Cummings-Browne not only snubs her entry—but falls over dead! After her quiche’s secret ingredient turns out to be poison, she must reveal the unsavory truth…

Agatha has never baked a thing in her life! In fact, she bought her entry ready-made from an upper crust London quicherie. Grating on the nerves of several Carsely residents, she is soon receiving sinister notes. Has her cheating and meddling landed her in hot water, or are the threats related to the suspicious death? It may mean the difference between egg on her face and a coroner’s tag on her toe…

Review –
This is the book that started the Agatha Raisin Mystery Series and it was wonderful.  I’ve read all of the other books in the series and have always been a big fan of the series but this book tells us how Agatha came to be in Carsely in the Cotwolds and how James Lacey came to be her next door neighbor.(In later books James and Agatha marry for a short time)
The characters are eccentric, fun, somethings irritating but always entertaining. If you are in a bad mood, starting an Agatha Raisin Mystery will change that.
Truly a great series. Give it a try.
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Afterworlds by Scott Westerfield

Book Description:

Published: September 23, 2014

Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she’s made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings…

Told in alternating chapters is Darcy’s novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the ‘Afterworld’ to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved – and terrifying – stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.

Review –

This story is told in alternating chapters of the main character talking and the main characters fictional character talking and I did not like this format and I didn’t like the book at all. I’m probably the only person on the planet to say that but I had to make myself finish it and it was not a pleasant experience. If anyone reads it and likes it please let me know.

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