Friday, April 29, 2016

Mr. Kiss and Tell (Veronica Mars #2) by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham

Mr. Kiss and Tell (Veronica Mars #2) by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham - 330 pages

I liked reading this one a lot. It's the second Veronica Mars mystery set after the film of the same name. It is set 6 months after the end of the first mystery novel. A girl from Veronica's past is raped and beaten at the Neptune Grand and Veronica sets out to find the person responsible. Also, there's more drama around the incompetent Balboa County Sheriff Dan Lamb and a new contender to replace him in the November election. This one was better than the first novel, although I enjoyed reading both. It had everything I liked about the show and more. If you liked the show and movie, I would recommend reading the two novels that have been written so far.

'Til Death Do Us Part by Amanda Quick

'Til Death Do Us Part by Amanda Quick - 342 pages

Trent Hastings is suspicious of Calista Langley's "introductions" business that his sister has signed up for.  He's worried that his sister will be taken advantage of by Calista's other clients.  While he quickly discovers he has nothing to fear for his sister, he also discovers that Calista is being stalked by a madman giving her funeral momentos engraved with her initials.

I really enjoyed this historical romance suspense by Amanda Quick.  I like that she is no longer focusing on paranormal romances.  The mystery was quite good and while I had figured out parts of it, the ending was still a surprise.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Dances with Wolves - Michael Blake

Dances with Wolves - Michael Blake - 304 pages

SPOILER ALERT: Kevin Costner's butt is not in this book.

If you're still in, this Western is actually pretty great.  Blake tells the story of a post-Civil War soldier sent into the far reaches of the Western frontier.  When he arrives at his new post, he finds the fort deserted.  He's alone on the prairie, aside from his trusty horse Cisco (who, spoiler alert, DIES, so if you're sensitive about awesome fictional animals dying, here's a friendly heads up) and a lone wolf he names Two Socks.  But despite the initial isolation, something about the prairie calls to this sensitive soldier, and meeting the people who live there only deepens his resolve to become the man he believes himself to be.

There's more to this story than just what you saw in the movie.  Stands with a Fist in particular gets significantly more backstory and so do her adopted brethren.  A different end makes this a familiar read with refreshing changes.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Postcard Killers by James Patterson & Liza Marklund

The Postcard Killers by James Patterson & Liza Marklund, 421 pages

The Postcard Killers is one of James Patterson's older stand alone novels written in 2010.  Classified as a "vacation thriller,"  the book takes place in Europe. Murdered couples are being found in hotel rooms all over Europe.  Mysteriously when bodies appear, so do postcards from their locations.  The couples are also found murdered in poses of famous works of art.  I picked this book as a read on vacation, and I was not disappointed.

The Rainbow Comes And Goes: A Mother & Son On Life, Love And Loss by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt

The Rainbow Comes And Goes: A Mother & Son On Life, Love And Loss by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt, 290 pages

I can't think of a more famous mother and son pair then Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt.  This was definitely one of the best books I have read in 2016.  Gloria Vanderbilt grew up in the life of luxury.  When she was just 18 months old her wealthy father died and left her trust in the care of her mother. Gloria's mother was taken to court by her aunt who fought for custody of Gloria.  All this happened before Gloria was eighteen years old.  Written in the form of a conversation between mother and son, the book captivates the reader with the intriguing life as Gloria grows into adulthood and marries.

When Anderson's father Wyatt Cooper dies at the age of 50, Gloria finds herself raising Anderson and his brother Carter Cooper (Vanderbilt also had two sons from a previous marriage).  Tragically, Carter committed suicide by jumping off the balcony of the family's New York City apartment. In the book, Gloria and Anderson each talk about how they dealt with Carter's suicide differently.

I would say this book would make a great Mother's Day gift.  It is a very touching story of a mother and son who are very different in many ways, but yet are each other's greatest loves.

The Total Package by Stephanie Evanovich

The Total Package by Stephanie Evanovich, 246 pages

The Total Package is a cute, light romance novel by Stephanie Evanovich (not to be confused with Janet Evanovich).  Although, I believe Stephanie is not too distant a relative of Janet and her writing style is very similar.  Tyson Palmer is a down and out quarterback who makes a come back for a super bowl contending team.  But when old flame Dani Carr comes back in the picture, Tyson realizes he is in love with her.  Thrown into the mix, Dani has a shocking secret that will change Tyson's life forever.

Balancing In Heels:My Journey To Health, Happiness, And Making It All Work by Kristin Cavallari

Balancing In Heels: My Journey To Health, Happiness, And Making It All Work by Kristin Cavallari, 239 pages

I did not know Kristen Cavallari had a book out until I saw it on the shelf.  Most people know her from her reality shows The Hills and Laguana Beach, but I knew her from Dancing with the Stars.  Also, she is married to the Chicago Bears quarterback, Jay Cutler.  This book is full of pictures of her and her family.  The books offers health, fitness, and fashion tips for the busy working woman, mom and wife. She also writes about her love story with Jay Cutler and her pregnancies.