Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Winter Fortress by Neal Bascomb

The Winter Fortress: The Epic Mission to Sabotage Hitler's Atomic Bomb -378 pages

In Nazi-occupied Norway, the Germans planned to exploit production of "heavy water" at  one of the few plants in the world that produced it in order to use it as a stabilizer in a nuclear reaction. This book follows several brave Norwegians who escaped to Great Britain and volunteered to train as commandos to attempt to destroy the Norsk Hydro facility where the isotope was generated. Hitler ordered any captured commandos to be shot, and the Norwegians also had to contend with ferocious winter weather in the region where their raid was to take place. Bascomb's book is well-written and clearly explains the technicalities of the heavy water isotope. The participants in this operation are considered heroes in Norway, and they clearly deserve that title.

The Quickie by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge

The Quickie by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge, 357 pages

This is an older James Patterson novel, written about ten years ago, but still a pretty good read.  Lauren Stillwell is a NYPD cop who suspects her husband may be cheating on her.  She proceeds to plot revenge against him.  What follows is a murder of a fellow officer and a shocking twist of who is responsible for the killing.  With many twists and turns (and a surprise ending), this book really held my interest.

Monday, March 27, 2017

The Dragon's Price- by Bethany Wiggins

The Dragon's Price by Bethany Wiggins-304 pages

When two warring kingdoms unified against a deadly menace laying waste to both their lands, they had to make a choice: vow to marry their heirs to one another, or forfeit their lives to the dragon.

Centuries later, everyone expects the sheltered princess Sorrowlynn to choose the barbarian prince over the fire-breathing beast—everyone, that is, except Sorrow, who is determined to control her own destiny or die trying.

As she is lowered into the dragon’s chamber, she assumes her life is over until Golmarr, the young prince she just spurned, follows her with the hopes of being her hero and slaying the dragon. But the dragon has a different plan. . . .

If the dragon wins, it will be freed from the spell that has bound it to the cave for centuries. If Sorrow or Golmarr vanquish the dragon, the victor will gain its treasure and escape the cave beneath the mountain. But what exactly is the dragon hiding?

There are no safe havens for Sorrow or Golmarr—not even with each other—and the stakes couldn’t be higher as they risk everything to protect their kingdom.

Star Wars, Vol. 1: Skywalker Strikes (Star Wars Disney Canon Graphic Novel #1) by Jason Aaron

Star Wars, Vol. 1: Skywalker Strikes (Star Wars Disney Canon Graphic Novel #1) by Jason Aaron-160 pages

Set in the immediate aftermath of the events of A New Hope (Episode IV), Luke, Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca, C-3PO, and R2-D2 are on a Rebel Alliance mission together. After this successful (albeit clumsy) mission Luke feels less than a Jedi and seeks out Tatooine and Ben Kenobi's dwelling hoping to find some answers. Meanwhile, Princess Leia and Han go on another mission for the Rebel Alliance. Overall, this was a good read as I enjoy both Star Wars and graphic novels. This graphic novel is well done.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Hanging Tree by Ben Aaronovitch

The Hanging Tree: A Rivers of London Novel by Ben Aaronovitch --- 292 pages

Book Six in the Rivers of London has been a long time coming but is definitely worth the wait. Our hero, London Police Constable Peter Grant (apprentice wizard of the Metropolitan Police's Falcon Squad under the command of Superintendent Nightingale) gets seconded into a drug overdose case in the exclusive Knightsbridge neighborhood of London when it turns out one of the suspects is the daughter of the formidable Lady Ty, Goddess of the Tyburn River.  Peter's interest ticks up when he finds cause to suspect that the Faceless Man, nemesis of all practitioners of the order of Sir Isaac Newton, is involved in the crime. With side forays into Peter's current relationship with Beverley Brook, another of the Rivers family, his new police partner Sahra Guleed, and tantalizing glimpses of his former partner Lesley May (now gone over to the dark side), and Peter's running commentary on police procedure amid the dizzying diversity of modern London. Plus the usual blend of explosions, buildings collapsing, sudden fires, flash floods, riots and weird bollocks that follows Peter wherever he goes. 

If you are not familiar with the series, then go back and start with  Book One. Highly recommended to all fans of snarky British humor, police procedurals, magic, folklore, fantasy, and the history of London neighborhoods.

Click HERE for a review from tor.com.

Click HERE for a review from Speculative Herald.com.

Swoon by Nina Malkin

Swoon by Nina Malkin 421 pages

Torn from her native New York City and dumped in the land of cookie-cutter preps, Candice is resigned to accept her posh, dull fate. Nothing ever happens in Swoon, Connecticut...until Dice's perfect, privileged cousin Penelope nearly dies in a fall from an old tree, and her spirit intertwines with that of a ghost. His name? Sinclair Youngblood Powers. His mission? Revenge. And while Pen is oblivious to the possession, Dice is all too aware of Sin. She's intensely drawn to him - but not at all crazy about the havoc he's wreaking. Determined to exorcise the demon, Dice accidentally sets Sin loose, gives him flesh, makes him formidable. Now she must destroy an even more potent - and irresistible - adversary, before the whole town succumbs to Sin's will. Only trouble is, she's in love with him.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Twin Star Exorcists, v.1 by Yoshiaki Sukeno

Twin Star Exorcists, v. 1 by Yoshiaki Sukeno - 208 pages

Rokuro wants nothing to do with being an exorcist.  Benio's whole life is devoted to exorcism.  Then it is decreed that they are the Twin Star Exorcists who will marry and have a child who will be the most powerful exorcist of all time.  Too bad they hate each other.

This is the first volume in the series.  It was fairly interesting to read.  They did a good job of keeping you reading by not revealing too much of either Rokuro or Benio's past while dropping hints.  I'm intrigued enough that I started reading the second volume.