Thursday, March 08, 2018

Beyond the Body Farm by Dr. Bill Bass & Jon Jefferson

Started: 2/16/18
Finished: 3/7/18
Year: 2007
Pages: 257
Genre: Forensics
Grade: B+
Reason for reading: TBR shelf
Blurb (from book jacket): "There is no scientist in the world like Dr. Bill Bass. A pioneer in forensic anthropology, Bass created the world's first laboratory dedicated to the study of human decomposition-three acres of land on a hillside in Tennessee where human bodies are left to the elements. His research at 'the Body Farm' has revolutionized forensic science, helping police crack cold cases and pinpoint time of death. But during a forensics career that spans half a century, Bass and his work have ranged far beyond the gates of the Body Farm. In this riveting book, the bone sleuth explores the rise of modern forensic science , using fascinating cases from his career to take readers into the real world of C.S.I.
"Some of Bill Bass's cases rely on the simplest of tools and techniques, such as reassembling-from battered torsos and a stack of severed limbs-eleven people hurled skyward by an explosion at an illegal fireworks factory. Other cases hinge on sophisticated techniques Bass could not have imagined when he began his career: harnessing scanning electron microscopy to detect trace elements in knife wounds; and extracting DNA from a long-buried corpse, only to dine that the female murder victim may have been mistakenly identified a quarter-century before."
Opinion: I have enjoyed Bass/Jefferson's fictional series and was happy to read some of Bass's real cases. The Body Farm has always intrigued me since reading Patricia Cornwell's book so I've been trying to read up on it as much as I can.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

The Colony Chronicles: Colony by David M. Carner

Started: 1/16/18
Finished: 2/14/18
Year: 2018
Pages: 203
Genre: Sci-Fi
Grade: C
Reason for reading: edit for friend
Blurb: New Alien Invasion
Opinion: This was a first draft so there were some editing things. The premise of trying to find a new place to live after Earth's moon was destroyed and the Earth's climate have changed dramatically isn't new but still interesting. Overall the idea is good, the plot is good (possible alien invasion) but since I'm not a big sci-fi fan, it kinda fell short

Saturday, December 09, 2017

Crazy Like a Fox by Rita Mae Brown

Started: 11/27/17
Finished: 12/7/17
Year: 2017
Pages: 271
Genre: Mystery
Grade: DNF
Reason for reading: review for LibraryThing.com
Blurb (from book jacket): "As the calendar turns, the crisp October winds bode well for this year's hunting season. But before the bugle sounds, Sister Jane takes a scenic drive up the Blue Ridge Mountains for a board meeting at the Museum of Hounds and Hunting. Brimming with colorful stories and mementos from hunts of yore, the mansion is plunged into mystery when a venerable hunting horn is stolen right out of its case. The only clue, on a left-behind cell phone, is what seems to be a 'selfie' video of the horn's original owner, Wesley Carruthers-decreased since 1954.
"Odder still, Wesley's body was never found. When Sister makes a discovery that may explain his unsolved disappearance, it leads her back to the Jefferson Hunt at midcentury, with her faithful hounds at her side. But as the clues quickly mount, Sister is no longer sure if she's pursuing a priceless artifact, a thief, Wesley's killer...or a ghost. The only certainty is that someone wants to put Sister off the chase-perhaps permanently."
Opinion: I did not finish this-made it more than halfway. Just couldn't get into it even despite the amount of animals and their conversations. The writing and plot were fine. Think that me not being able to finish it is totally me.....not the writing.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Christmas, Present by Jacquelyn Mitchard

Started: 11/21/17
Finished: 11/21/17
Year: 2003
Pages: 132
Genre: Literature
Grade: C
Reason for reading: review for MyShelf.com
Blurb (from back cover): "A fourteenth wedding anniversary is nothing to sneeze at. Elliott Banner knows, but it's not exactly a landmark year-like fifteen, or twenty, when he plans to take his wife, Laura to Paris. But when a headache on the drive home from their anniversary date-two days before Christmas-turns out to be more than a migraine, he wishes he had celebrated every year as though it were their last."
Opinion: A disappointing average read by Mitchard. I have thoroughly enjoyed her other books but this one fell short. For a more complete review, please check out MyShelf.com

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Dance of Death by Dale Hudson

Started: 10/27/17
Finished: 11/16/17
Year: 2006
Pages: 411
Genre: True Crime
Grade: B
Reason for reading: grabbed off TBR shelf
Blurb (from back cover): "Kimberly Renee Poole, 21, led a double life. The Winston--Salem, North Carolina area housewife and mother was also a topless dancer at a strip club. She craved jewelry, designer clothing and adulterous affairs with both men and women. Brent Poole, her hopelessly devoted spouse, could deny her nothin. But that wasn't enough for Renee. She wanted his money and his life.
"Murder moved from fantasy to reality after Renee Poole began an affair with John Boyd Frazier, a patron at the club where she worked. On the night of June 9, 1998, on the pretext of celebrating their third wedding anniversary, Poole lured her husband to an oceanfront hotel in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. While their young daughter slept in the hotel room, Renee made love to Brent on the deserted beach-then delivered him to Frazier, who shot him dead.
"From the start, police knew Renee's story didn't add up, and the investigation that followed exposed the dark details of how Brent Poole's marriage to his dream woman ended in cold blood."
Opinion: I have always enjoyed Hudson's books and this one is no exception. This shows the complexity of the police investigation and the several court trials that Kimberly and John went through where they eventually were found guilty. Any True Crime fan will enjoy this book.

And Then He Was Gone by Joan Hall Hovey

Started: 10/25/17
Finished: 11/6/17
Year: 2016
Pages: 148
Genre: mystery
Grade: F
Reason for reading: review for MyShelf.com
Blurb: woman's husband goes missing, she seeks the truth
Opinion: This is one of the most poorly written books that I have read. It was self-published. There are glaring spelling, grammar and names misused throughout the book. The premise is a great one and could have been well developed but I could not enjoy it due to the many errors-blame it on playing Scrabble with my family and being an avid reader since I was little.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Girl in the Spider's Web by David Lagercrantz

Started: 9/21/17
Finished: 10/25/17
Year: 2015
Pages: 400
Genre: mystery/thriller
Grade: B-
Reason for reading: grabbed off TBR shelf
Blurb (from book jacket): "She is the girl with the dragon tattoo-a genius hacker and uncompromising misfit. He is a crusading journalist whose championing of the truth often brings him to the brink of prosecution.
"Late one night, Blomkvist receives a phone call from a source claiming to have information vital to the United States. The source has been in a contact with a young female superhacker-a hacker resembling someone Blomkvist knows all too well. The implications are staggering. Blomkvist, in desperate need of a scoop for Millennium, turns to Salander for help. She, as usual, has her own agenda. The secret they are both chasing is at the center of a tangled web of spies, cybercrimimals, and governments around the world, and someone is prepared to kill to protect it..."
Opinion: As a fan of The Girl series, this one fits nicely along with the characters that were originally written/created by another author. Continued strong characterization and an interesting plot that works well with the characters.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Kill Creek by Scott Thomas

Started: 10/6/17
Finished: 10/18/17
Year: 2017
Pages: 414
Genre: Horror
Grade: A
Reason for reading: review for MyShelf.com
Blurb (from back cover): "At the end of a dark prairie road, nearly forgotten in the Kansas countryside, is the Finch House. For years it has remained empty, overgrown, abandoned. Soon the door will be opened for the first time in decades. But something is waiting, lurking in the shadows, anxious to meet its new guests...
"When best-selling horror author Sam McGarver is invited to spend Halloween night in one of the country's most infamous haunted houses, he reluctantly agrees. At least he won't be alone; joining him are three other masters of the macabre, writers who have helped shape modern horror. But what begins as a simple publicity stunt will become a fight for survival-the entity that have awakened will follow them, torment them, threatening to make them a part of the bloody legacy of Kill Creek."
Opinion: The best book I have read so far in 2017. For a more complete review, please look for my review on MyShelf.com