Thursday, January 30, 2014

Fear Nothing (Detective D.D. Warren #7) by, Lisa Gardner

Fear Nothing (Detective D.D. Warren #7) by, Lisa Gardner

Synopsis from Goodreads: My name is Dr. Adeline Glen. Due to a genetic condition, I can’t feel pain. I never have. I never will.
The last thing Boston Detective D.D. Warren remembers is walking the crime scene after dark. Then, a creaking floorboard, a low voice crooning in her ear… She is later told she managed to discharge her weapon three times. All she knows is that she is seriously injured, unable to move her left arm, unable to return to work.
My sister is Shana Day, a notorious murderer who first killed at fourteen. Incarcerated for thirty years, she has now murdered more people while in prison than she did as a free woman.
Six weeks later, a second woman is discovered murdered in her own bed, her room containing the same calling cards from the first: a bottle of champagne and a single red rose. The only person who may have seen the killer: Detective D.D. Warren, who still can’t lift her child, load her gun, or recall a single detail from the night that may have cost her everything.
Our father was Harry Day, an infamous serial killer who buried young women beneath the floor of our home. He has been dead for forty years. Except the Rose Killer knows things about my father he shouldn’t. My sister claims she can help catch him. I think just because I can’t feel pain, doesn’t mean my family can’t hurt me.
D.D. may not be back on the job, but she is back on the hunt. Because the Rose Killer isn’t just targeting lone women; he is targeting D.D. And D.D. knows there is only one way to take him down:
Fear nothing.

My Review:
This book definitely had the creep factor that Lisa Gardner writes so well and it is now the second creepiest after Say Goodbye.

I love that DD has grown so much as a person I've always loved the writing of this series but DD has always annoyed me but the last couple books , well, since she got pregnant there has been a humanizing of her and I am glad for that. This one gave us a raw, injured DD and we saw a softer more vulnerable side to her which I enjoyed immensely.

This story kept me guessing and had some great red herrings including one I made up in head about the Warden that never did come to pass but I still think Gardner wanted me to suspect what I did. (*no spoilers*)

She also explores nature vs. nurture if everyone in your family is a psychopath, even though you didn’t grow up with them will it make you one too? When your father was a serial killer who kidnapped and tortured young women then buried them under your house, then your sister murders a child when she is just a child plus has killed a couple guards so is in prison with no hope of parole, but you were a baby these things shouldn’t have to be you should they? Adeline was the lucky one adopted by a doctor who really did help her so much and kept her from her past but when he dies… Adeline ends up making decisions that will change everything.

I was also fascinated by the Adeline’s condition; she doesn’t feel pain which sounds good on the surface but as Adeline shows us it’s not a gift but a curse because you have to live very, very carefully. Adeline has to check her body every night because an infection she can’t feel will kill her. I can’t imagine breaking a bone and not feeling it and just going on with your day.

Gardner also goes into the crazy murderabilia business where people buy letters and items from horrific crimes & criminals. Google it , it is more macabre than any book could ever be. I didn’t realize just how much there really was out there till I googled this to see what the correct spelling was, it is frightening and very odd!

All in all this is another great book from Gardner and I am happy to report DD is finally growing on me and I am liking her more and more. Another great read from Lisa Gardner! Highly recommend.

5 Stars

Monday, January 27, 2014

Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen

Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen

Another great book from Sarah Addison Allen, it’s magically beautiful! Now I have to tell you, there is a bit of predictability to this book BUT it is the journey they take to get there that makes it so worth the read.

There are two stories at the beginning of this book that eventually intertwine the story of Kate who a year ago lost her husband and has been sleepwalking through life not being present in her or her daughter Devin’s life, in fact, in that year she has let her mother in law, Cricket , pretty much take over her life, which is ironic considering her husband always wanted her out of their lives. Then we have the story of Eby Kate’s great aunt who in the 60’s married the love of her life, George, who was also very rich not that Eby ever cared about that, while they are in Paris they meet Lisette (I won’t tell you how …Spoilers). When they finally come back to the states Eby’s family just wants and wants so Eby & George get rid of their money and buy a hotel/resort in Georgia called Lost Lake and are very happy for many years. Kate spent one glorious summer there when she was 12 and when she & Devin find an old postcard Eby sent to Kate years ago they decide to go visit Lost Lake much to the chagrin of her over bearing mother in law.

Devin & Lisette have become my new favorite characters from this author. I love Devin she is precocious yet so wise beyond her years she sees her mother sleepwalk through a year after Devin’s father dies and now that her mom is awake again she just wants things to work out and they aren’t going to work out moving in with her grandmother Cricket. Devin’s journey is so magical and wonderful. I just love her I can’t help it. Lisette is such an interesting character and I truly fell in love with her quiet wisdom too. I enjoyed every scene she was in. There is a slew of interesting characters besides the ones I have already mentioned, there is Selma and her charms, and Bulahdeen is hilariously over the top. These two ladies have been coming to Lost Lake for years and cracked me up most of the time, I loved that the author gave us a good background on these characters and not just here they are.

As with other Addison books there is some big time magical realism going on here in more ways than one which made this one unique, there are a few different magical realism stories here and they are so different yet the way they fit into this story is so well done that I believed it all.

All this makes this book almost impossible to put down, between the magical story and the great characters this is a must read especially if you are a southern fiction fan or a fan of magical realism.

Sarah Addison Allen did not disappoint in this long awaited book and I am so glad she updated her fans on her breast cancer progress that she has had 2 clean scans.. Hoorah!

5 Stars

Monday, January 20, 2014

The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd

The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd 

Synopsis from Goodreads: Writing at the height of her narrative and imaginative gifts, Sue Monk Kidd presents a masterpiece of hope, daring, the quest for freedom, and the desire to have a voice in the world.

Hetty "Handful” Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.

Kidd’s sweeping novel is set in motion on Sarah’s eleventh birthday, when she is given ownership of ten year old Handful, who is to be her handmaid.We follow their remarkable journeys over the next thirty-five years, as both strive for a life of their own, dramatically shaping each other’s destinies and forming a complex relationship marked by guilt, defiance, estrangement and the uneasy ways of love.
As the stories build to a riveting climax, Handful will endure loss and sorrow, finding courage and a sense of self in the process. Sarah will experience crushed hopes, betrayal, unrequited love, and ostracism before leaving Charleston to find her place alongside her fearless younger sister, Angelina, as one of the early pioneers in the abolition and women’s rights movements.

Inspired by the historical figure of Sarah Grimke, Kidd goes beyond the record to flesh out the rich interior lives of all of her characters, both real and invented, including Handful’s cunning mother, Charlotte, who courts danger in her search for something better.
This exquisitely written novel is a triumph of storytelling that looks with unswerving eyes at a devastating wound in American history, through women whose struggles for liberation, empowerment, and expression will leave no reader unmoved.

My review:
I maybe shouldn’t have started this one so soon after finishing The Wedding Gift because there were some similarities, but this book was different in that Sarah Grimke was a real person. The other similarity between The Wedding Gift and this book was the slave, Handful, was always hoping to escape she and her mama saved money so that they could finally get away and be free. But of course things don’t work out as hoped.

Sarah was so far ahead of her time that when she was gifted a slave on her 12th birthday she asked her daddy for remuneration paper so she could free said slave when she turned of age. As she grew older she was also not only an abolitionist but also suffragette at this time in our country's history these two and hand-in-hand.

There were times in this book when I wanted something happy to happen, just anything even a tiny thing but it never did. But this is probably more true to the real circumstances of these women’s lives.

I love Sue Monk Kidd’s writing and this was a good story if not at all happy. This book also had real people so I had a lot of fun researching after I was done. I loved the alternating chapters between Sarah & Handful because sometimes the same event was seen so differently from each woman’s viewpoint it was very fascinating.

Fans of southern fiction won’t want to miss this one. I also learned a lot about Sarah Grimke that I never knew because I had never heard of her and that is sad because she did some amazing work.

4 Stars