Sunday, June 30, 2013

Ghosts and Legends of the Carolina Ghosts by Terrance Zepke

Started: 6/29/13
Finished: 6/30/13
Year: 2005
Pages: 159
Genre: Paranormal
Grade: B
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb (from back cover): A collection of twenty-eight stories ranging from hair-raising talks of horror to fascinating legends from the folklore of the North and South Carolina shores.
Opinion: Some interesting historical stories about the past on the Carolina shores. Would be nice to visit some of the areas mentioned in the book.

At the City's Edge by Marcus Sakey

Started: 6/19/13
Finished: 6/25/13
Year: 2008
Pages: 346
Genre: Mystery/suspense
Grade: B
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb: Brother, former soldier, comes home and seeks to change a community and revenge for his brother's death.
Opinion: Lots of action and obvious that Sakey did his research on gangs. Great book.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Fifty Shades of Dorian Gray

Started: 6/24/13
Finished: 6/25/13
Year: 2013
Pages: 233
Genre: erotica
Grade: C
Reason for reading: borrowed from the library
Blurb (from back cover): "Meet artist Rosemary Hall and follow her inevitable downfall brought by her lust for the famous Dorian Gray-a tale both familiar and new in this brilliant erotic mash-up of one of the world's most beloved novels. With a mix of old fashioned Victorian debauchery and erotic, twenty-first-century lut this cleverly sexed-up classic will leave you wanting more!
Opinion: I felt that this was more of a parody of the classic Dorian Gray novel. The erotica was there in the beginning and about  non existant from halfway in the book.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Kinsey and Me by Sue Grafton

Started: 6/17/13
Finished: 6/19/13
Year: 2013
Pages: 283
Genre: Short stories
Grade: B
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb (from book jacket): "The nine stories that open the book are each gems of detection. So much has happened in the decades since Kinsey made her debut that it's easy to forget she was part of a seismic shift in the private-eye novel, as women ceased to be loyal sidekicks and came into their own, with strong voices and decidedly strong opinions. The same fiesty voice, rapier with, and irreverent observations readers fell in love with in A is for Alibi permeate these stories, proving just how fully formed Kinsey was from the beginning.
"The thirteen stories that form the second part of the book were written in the decade after Grafton's mother died. These stories feature Kit Blue, a younger version of Sue herself. They are dark with their undercurrent of sadness and muted pain. Grafton's family was troubled, as so many families are, but her wise and sensitive telling traces a remarkable voyage, from anger to understanding to forgiveness, and finally, to the realization of a profound love. The emotional impact is enormous.
"Sue has in the past briefly mentioned the alcoholism of both her parents, which seems to have begun around the time her father returned from the war. Some things we never discover about our parents, and Sue did not know what led to this dependency. But with it came a childhood lacking in supervision. She was free to read everything and roam everywhere, to let her imagination take her as far as she could go. But the dark side of such limitless freedom was emotional turmoil.
"Sue is a very private person and has never before opened this up to public view. That she does so now speaks to her having come to terms with the past. Still, as she writes, 'we live in a confessional age, but I don't want to be perceived as plundering my own sorry story for fun and profit. At the remove of some fifty years, I still find myself reluctant to lift the veil on a period of my life that was chaotic and confused.
"'I wish life could be edited as deftly as prose. It would be nice to go back and write a better story, correcting weaknesses and follies in the light of what I now know. What I've noticed, though, is that any attempt to trim out the dark matter takes away some of the good that was also buried in the muck. The past is a package deal and I don't believe there's a way to tell some of the truth without telling most. Wisdom comes at a price, and I have paid dearly for mine.'"
Opinion: The Kinsey stories are typical Kinsey material-entertaining and fun. The more personal stories were interesting and lets readers into Sue's personal life.

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Clairvoyant by Hans Holzer

Started: 6/13/13
Finished: 6/17/13
Year: 1976
Pages: 166
Genre: Biography
Grade: B
Reason for reading: Borrowed from the library
Blurb (from book jacket): "Uschi Troll was born in Vienna in the 1950's. She had her first psychic experience at the age of four; by the time she was eleven, she had bewildered and frightened her parents-and herself-with the extent of her powers. Only gradually was she able to accept her unusual gift, as she moved from school to school, from relationship to relationship...
"When Uschi decided that it was time to tell her story, she told it to Hans Holzer, knowing that he, a world-renowned expert on psychic phenomena, would tell it with insight and truth. Holzer traces Uschi's life from private school in a baroque castle in Salzburg to study and exploration of parapsychology at the University of Los Angeles, and then to London as a society clairvoyant. In her twenties, her powers widely known, Uschi went back to Austria, where she was finaly able to resolve two troublesome conflicts: feeling quality over using her talents to amass a fortune and feeling disillusioned with a world that neither fully understood nor accepted, but as always poised to take advantage."
Blurb: An interesting look at a psychic's life.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Perfect Marriage by Kimberla Lawson Roby

Stated: 6/12/13
Finished: 6/13/13
Year: 2013
Pages: 174
Genre: Literature
Grade: B+
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb (from book jacket): "Denise and Derrick Shaw are the perfecrt American couple. Happily married for fifteen years, they have a wonderful daughter, Mackenzie, successful careers, and a beautiful house in a posh Chicago suburb. They are attractive, respected...and hiding a shocking secret: a dangerous addiction to drugs.
"It started innocently enough. Denise occasionally used prescription drugs to help her deal with the long hours and demanding nature of her job. Derreck, also under pressure at work, began using cocaine socially with some of his colleagues.
"They can quit whenever they want to. At least, that's what Denise would like to believe..
"As her job becomes more stressful, Denise can no longer get through the day without a fix. Derrek realizes his harmless habit has become anything but, and desperately wants to get clean. However, his attempts are derailed when there is a sudden family tragedy. Once soul mates, now this husband and wife are quickly losing the immense love that had been the cornerstone of their marriage. With her parents spiraling out of control, Mackenie makes an unexpected move to take matters into her own hands. Is her sacrifice too late-or is there still hope? Is there a final chance to save the Shaw family?
Opinion: A powerful story in a short book. Readers immediately feel for this family and see how quickly innocent using becomes deadly.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Blood Money by James Grippando

Started: 6/10/13
Finished: 6/12/13
Year: 2013
Pages: 342
Genre: Suspense/mystery
Grade: B+
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb (from book jacket): "It is the most sensational murder trial since O. J. Simpson's. The nation is obsessed with Sydney Bennett, a sexy nightclub waitress and good-time girl accused of murdering her two-year-old daughter fro cramping her party life. When he had agreed to defend Sydney, Jack Swyteck knew he'd be taking on the toughest and most controversial case of his career.
"Millions of 'TV jurors' have convicted Sydney in the court of public opinion.
"When the shockking verdict of not guilty is announced, citizens across the country are outraged, and Jack is bombarded by ther fallout: angry, profanity-laced phone calls and even outright threats. Media-fed rumors of 'blood money'-purported seven-figure book and movie deals-ratchet up the hysteria, putting Jack's client and everyone around her at risk."
Opinion: High-paced action with some side twists. A great read.

Monday, June 10, 2013

The Lively Ghosts of Ireland by Hans Holzer

Started: 6/6/13
Finished: 6/10/13
Year: 1967
Pages: 182
Genre: Paranormal
Grade: C
Reason for reading: borrowed from the library
Blurb (from book jacket): "Holzer and a medium, in most cases his psychic friend Sybil Leek, investigated may spectral phenomena, which took them from the rocky Kerry Coast to the windswept hills of Tara. They found disembodied Irish characters everywhere-clinging to castle walls and inhabiting drafty rectories-all anxious to reveal their melancholy stories.
Opinion: For the time that it was written, it gives good descriptions of possible paranormal activity in Ireland.

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Seeking Spirits by Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson

Started: 6/2/13
Finished: 6/5/13
Year: 2009
Pages: 264
Genre: biographical/paranormal
Grade: B+
Reason for reading: borrowed from library
Blurb: This is a following up to Ghost Hunting. More cases are discussed and more ghost hunting evidence/ways of examining are discussed.
Opinion: Some great cases and some that make you go Hmmmmm.

Saturday, June 01, 2013

The Bone Bed by Patricia Cornwell

Started: 5/27/13
Finished: 6/1/13
Year: 2012
Pages: 463
Genre: mystery
Grade: B
Reason for reading: borrowed from the library
Blurb (from book jacket): "A woman has vanished while digging a dinosaur bone bed in the remote wilderness of Canada. Somehow, the only evidence has made its way to the inbox of Chief Medical Examiner Kay Scarpetta, over the two thousand miles away in Boston. She has no idea why.
"But as events unfold with alarming speed, Scarpetta begins to suspect that the paleontologist's disappearance is connected to a series of crimes much closer to home: a gruesome murder, inexplicable tortures, and trace evidence from the last living creatures of the dinosaur age.
"When she turns to those around her, Scarpetta finds that the danger and suspicion have penetrated even her closet circles. Her niece Lucy speaks in riddles. Her lead investigator, Pete Marino and FBI forensic psychologist and husband, Benton Wesley, have secrets of their own. Feeling alone and betrayed, Scarpetta is tempted by someone from her past as she tracks a killer both cunning and cruel."
Opinion: Fits right in with Cornwell's other Scarpetta books. Did drag a little bit in the middle when cases were being introduced but in the end it all made sense.