1. Gone, Baby, Gone by Dennis Lehane

This is the first Dennis Lehane book I’ve read, and I think I’ll read a couple more. The main characters in this book are two P.I.s a male and female. Apparently in the book before this one they “hooked up” as they say. So I was a little behind in parts because they would talk about a murder that had happened in the first book. I’m not sure what the first book is called. I’ll find out at the library.

This was a really good book though. Even if I was missing some of the stuff because I hadn’t read the previous one. It’s about a little girl who is kidnapped, and about the P.I.s and cops who try to find her. It’s a very good whodunit. You won’t guess who did it. I didn’t, anyway. But maybe you’re smarter than me. Of course you are.

Anyway, it’s a page turner, and I thought the ending was well done. It’s a happy ending, but it’s not a happy ending. I would recommend this to anyone who likes mysteries.

2. The Cove by Catherine Coulter

I needed to start a new series and this was recommended by my library pal, Jan. This is the first book in Ms. Coulter’s FBI Thriller series. The only thing I’m a little leary of is that Ms. Coulter’s other books are romances. And I’m not talking mere love stories here. I’m talking about books with titles like The Countess, The Wild Baron, and The Wyndham Legacycomplete with terrible cover art. I know, don’t judge a book by it’s terrible cover art and all.

(I know I’m spoiled with good design because I know LBC and she’s so great at it that it’s just not even fair to the rest of the world. And when I see shitty book covers (daily at the ‘brary) I get so mad at the injustice of it (even if it’s probably a shitty book too) because still, someone wrote that book. They took time to write it. They probably even love the characters they created. That book they’ve written…it’s like a part of them that they’re giving to the rest of the world. And then some publishing company puts a cheap, shitty cover on it. I wonder if the authors ever get a choice. and if they do… then imagine all the shit they turn down! And I think, “Damn, do NONE of these authors have a pal like LBC?” It’s sad for them and it’s sad for us; for until they do get their own LBC we’re all stuck with the shitty cover art with the raised metallic letters. feh)

This book wasn’t much of an “FBI Thriller” as it was an Action Love Story. It was about a lady who’s blamed for killing her horrible, abusive father. She’s “on the lam” as they say, and the FBI is after her as is a doctor from a mental institution that she escaped from. She wasn’t really crazy…they just…try to make her think she’s crazy. She runs off and ends up in Oregon (I think) at her aunt’s house in The Cove which is a creepy little town where everything is picture-perfect.

The Handsome FBI Agent finds her in The Cove and immediately he’s all, “Don’t worry I believe you You didn’t kill anyone No you aren’t crazy I love you.” And then the action follows all, “My dead father called me on the phone! I’m not crazy!” and people in The Cove start dying. There’s a lot of junk that goes on in this book and it really got redundant. It should have been about 75 to 100 pages less than it was. I’m going to try the other books in the series because Jan told me that the first two books are kinda meh, but that it really gets good in the third one. This one gets 4 Cansecos.

3. Blood Dreams by Kay Hooper

Okay, we all know I’m a sucker for Hooper’s SCU/Bishop series. And I was SO EXCITED when I found out a new one was coming out. This one, however, was SO DISAPPOINTING. And sure it’s the same formulaic doodah that she always writes: Psychic investigator needs to solve a mystery and fall in love BOTH AT THE SAME TIME. But this time it’s like she didn’t even try to make the love story interesting NOR the solving of the crime. The love story was all, “Why did you leave for ten years?”

“I just left. I had things…”

“Why did you come back?”

“my sister needed me.”

“Was that the only reason?”

“I don’t…Look, I’m busy trying to solve a crime.”

“So am I. Let me help you with your psychic dreams…like how we used to do.”

“No! It’s too dangerous! I’ve gotta go.”

And on and on over and over. and the crime solving was also more of the same,

“Have we solved the crime yet?”

“No, we need more clues. Anyone?”

“We’ll have to wait for him to slip up and make a mistake.”

“There’s been another murder.”

“Let’s investigate.”

“Any of you psychics getting anything? no? Then I guess we could sit around and talk about how we haven’t got any clues and how we’ll have to wait for him to make a mistake.”

This book ended in such a way that really it wasn’t an ending and she’s leaving it WAY THE HELL open I guess for the next book. Which I say I won’t read, but you know I totally will. But if it sucks like this one I will swear off her books for good just like I did with Cornwell’s Scarpetta series back in 2005.

4. The Partly Cloudy Patriot by Sarah Vowell

Ah, the first nonfiction of the year.

I have a feeling that this will influence the rest of the nonfiction I read this year… or at least the next 6 months. Ms. Vowell is a fan of American history. I’ve never really been a big fan and in fact, in college I took the least amount of American History allowed and then proceeded to take class after class of British history to the point of the professor asking me if I was a history major. Of course I wasn’t. I was just a nerd in history nerd heaven.

I think the reason I’m not fond of my own country’s history is that I feel the need to apologize to the world for our history. I feel guilty about it. But I shouldn’t. My family wasn’t a wealthy land-owning family with slaves. I come from poor people, like, Pennsylvania Dutch and all that. What shame should I have? I dunno, still American history always leaves a bad taste in my mouth. But after reading this book I feel like I should get reacquainted with my country’s history. And actually I started doing that earlier in the month when I was going through the old local newspaper clippings, and reading up on the women’s suffrage movement. And when I think of Women’s Rights I never think about it being American history, but I guess really, it totally is.

Anyway, this is a neat book, and it’s short and sweet.

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