Twenty-seven-year-old Kristi Bentz is lucky to be alive. Not many people her age have nearly died twice at the hands of a serial killer, and lived to tell about it. Her dad, New Orleans detective, Rick Bentz, wants Kristi to stay in Baton Rouge and out of danger. But if anything, Kristi’s experiences have made her even more fascinated by the mind of the serial killer. She hasn’t given up her dream of being a true-crime writer – of exploring the darkest recesses of evil – and now she just may get her chance. Three girls have disappeared at All Saints University in just one term. All three were “lost souls” – troubled, vulnerable girls with no one to care about them, no one to come looking if they disappeared. The police think they’re runaways, but Kristi senses there’s something that links them, something terrifying. She decised to enroll, following their same steps. All Saints has changed a lot since Kristi was an undergraduate. The stodgy Catholic university has lured edgy new professors to its campus and gained a reputation for envelope-pushing, with classes like the very popular “The Influence of Vampirism in English Literature” and elaborately staged morality plays that feel more like the titillating entertainment of some underground club than religious spectacles. And there are whispers of a dark cult on campus whose members wear vials of blood around their necks and meet in secret chambers – rituals to which only the elite have access. To find the truth, Kristi will need to become part of the cult’s inner circle, to learn their secrets, and play the part of lost soul without losing herself in the process. It’s a dangerous path, and Kristi is skating on its knife-thin edge.
When Dr. Emil Euler Ganz — a brilliant luminary in the complex fields of cosmology and astrophysics — walked away from accolades and honors, disappearing into thin air twenty-five years ago, his colleagues’ tongues wagged, and rumors abounded. Ten years later, when Ganz reemerged as guru Father Jupiter, leader of the notorious cult the Order of the Rings of God, speculation about his sanity was rampant. But when Ganz is found dead, gossip and wild conjecture are the only clues available to LAPD lieutenant Peter Decker as he faces his most shocking case to date.
I’ve gone back and revisited a favorite author to read some books I’ve skipped over. I love her books. She has the right amount of mystery, suspense, light moments and the connection between her characters. It gives some insight into cults and how they can attract the doubtful fringes of society, both good and bad. You can see how some people are trapped in them and how the outside world wonders about why they exist. A good mystery with plenty of twists.
Telling the Truth Could Get Them Killed. Remaining Silent Could Be Worse.When Cooper, Hiro, and Gordy witness a robbery that leaves a man in a coma, they find themselves tangled in a web of mystery and deceit that threatens their lives.
A very interesting who-done-it for kids, will definitely make them think about what they might do in the same place. I liked the suspense of it, it would not have surprised me to have some addition things happen, though they didn’t. The story was just right for younger readers.
Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in “The Satan Sacrifice” of Kinnakee, Kansas.” She survived—and famously testified that her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, the Kill Club—a secret secret society obsessed with notorious crimes—locates Libby and pumps her for details. They hope to discover proof that may free Ben. Libby hopes to turn a profit off her tragic history: She’ll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club—for a fee. As Libby’s search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started—on the run from a killer.
Imagine your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret – something so terrible it would destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others too. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive . . .
Cecilia Fitzpatrick achieved it all – she’s an incredibly successful business woman, a pillar of her small community and a devoted wife and mother. Her life is as orderly and spotless as her home. But that letter is about to change everything, and not just for her: Rachel and Tess barely know Cecilia – or each other – but they too are about to feel the earth-shattering repercussions of her husband’s devastating secret.
Kyle Wilson was the size of a regular ninth grader until crazy Mrs. Shepherd injected him with a shrinking formula. Now he’s a prisoner in her dollhouse, the fourth Lambkin in Mrs. Shepherd’s collection! She loves them and would never harm them, she says . . . as long as they don’t make her angry.
One thing is certain. Kyle and the others must figure out how to escape, and fast.
Special Agent Pendergast arrives at an exclusive Colorado ski resort to rescue his protégée, Corrie Swanson, from serious trouble with the law. His sudden appearance coincides with the first attack of a murderous arsonist who–with brutal precision–begins burning down multimillion-dollar mansions with the families locked inside. After springing Corrie from jail, Pendergast learns she made a discovery while examining the bones of several miners who were killed 150 years earlier by a rogue grizzly bear. Her finding is so astonishing that it, even more than the arsonist, threatens the resort’s very existence.
Drawn deeper into the investigation, Pendergast uncovers a mysterious connection between the dead miners and a fabled, long-lost Sherlock Holmes story–one that might just offer the key to the modern day killings as well.
Now, with the ski resort snowed in and under savage attack–and Corrie’s life suddenly in grave danger–Pendergast must solve the enigma of the past before the town of the present goes up in flames.
In the tradition of John le Carré, Eric Ambler, and more recently, Joseph Kanon, Black Out is a stunning wartime thriller. As the Luftwaffe makes its last, desperate assaults on the battered city, Londoners take to the underground shelters amidst the black out. Detective-Sergeant Troy starts with the clue of a neatly dismembered corpse leading him into a world of stateless refugees, military intelligence, and corruption all the way to the top of Allied High Command.
Case two: A beautiful young office worker falls victim to a maniac’s apparently random attack.
Case three: A new mother finds herself trapped in a hell of her own making – with a very needy baby and a very demanding husband – until a fit of rage creates a grisly, bloody escape.
Thirty years after the first incident, as private investigator Jackson Brodie begins investigating all three cases, startling connections and discoveries emerge .
In the late 1970s, Larry Ott and Silas “32″ Jones were boyhood pals. Their worlds were as different as night and day: Larry, the child of lower-middle-class white parents, and Silas, the son of a poor, single black mother. Yet for a few months the boys stepped outside of their circumstances and shared a special bond. But then tragedy struck: Larry took a girl on a date to a drive-in movie, and she was never heard from again. She was never found and Larry never confessed, but all eyes rested on him as the culprit. The incident shook the countyand perhaps Silas most of all. His friendship with Larry was broken, and then Silas left town.
More than twenty years have passed. Larry, a mechanic, lives a solitary existence, never able to rise above the whispers of suspicion. Silas has returned as a constable. He and Larry have no reason to cross paths until another girl disappears and Larry is blamed again. And now the two men who once called each other friend are forced to confront the past they’ve buried and ignored for decades.
With Asperger’s syndrome, teenager Jacob Hunt is unable to have the same kind of social life other boys his age have. However, like other kids with AS, he has honed in on one particular interest: forensic analysis. He normally shows up to crime scenes and helps solve the case, but this time he is the prime suspect. When a murder leads police to question Jacob, they interpret his AS symptoms as a sign of guilt and cast a very public spotlight on Jacob and his family.
The characters are well developed and intriguing to listen to. Picoult is known to research her topic thoroughly which helped with understanding Asperger’s syndrome and the main character. A very interesting story.
Former U.S. Marshal Simon Fisk works as a private contractor, tracking down and recovering children who were kidnapped by their own estranged parents. He only has one rule: he won’t touch stranger abduction cases. He’s still haunted by the disappearance of his own daughter when she was just a child, still unsolved, and stranger kidnappings hit too close to home.
Until, that is, six-year-old Lindsay Sorkin disappears from her parents’ hotel room in Paris, and the French police deliver Simon an ultimatum: he can spend years in a French jail, or he can take the case and recover the missing girl. Simon sets out in pursuit of Lindsay and the truth behind her disappearance. But Lindsay’s captors did not leave an easy trail, and following it will take Simon across the continent, through the ritziest nightclubs and the seediest back alleys, into a terrifying world of international intrigue and dark corners of his past he’d rather leave well alone.
Moxie Fleece is looking forward to “the best summer ever” with her best friend Ollie. They will be starting different high schools in the fall and this is the last chance they will have to spend a lot of time together. One morning she opens the door, thinking it is her mother, and finds a red-head woman who tells Moxie that Sully Cupcakes wants his stuff back or else. Moxie’s grandpa, Grumps, used to be in the business. He would hide stuff for local criminals. Grumps has Alzheimer’s now and lives in a nursing home. He has his good days and his bad days, but he still won’t talk to Moxie about Sully Cupcakes. Moxie has 14 days to figure out what Grumps hid and where he hid it. Moxie and Ollie set off on a geo-chaching, mystery tour. They discover that Sully Cupcakes stole 12 items from the Sally Gardner Museum and Grumps hid them around Boston in places where he was working. Their hunt takes them to the State House, Trinity Church and the Green Monster itself (Fenway Park). The red-head dogs their steps all the way, but Moxie is determined to find the art and make sure her family stays safe.
I really enjoyed this mystery. Moxie and Ollie are smart and resourceful and adventurous. Sure there were times when I really wanted them to be a little smarter and tell an adult what was going on, but that would have ruined the story. I enjoyed the fact that the mystery was based on a true crime. The Sally Gardner Museum was really robbed in March 1990, but the art has never been found. I also really enjoyed Moxie’s relationship with Grumps. I thought the depiction of Alzheimer’s was really well done and realistic. This is definitely a book I would recommend to kids.
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley.
I’m not even sure how to classify this wonderful book. What I do know is that there are very few people to whom I would not recommend it.
Ransom Riggs has created a magical world within a world aided by the liberal use of vintage photographs which add an otherworldly quality to the narrative. The story opens with a grandfather telling his grandson tales of his youth in an orphanage off the coast of Wales. He had fled continental Europe during World War II and spent the rest of his youth hiding out at said orphanage. Most of the time, stories about orphanages wind up grim and cruel, but this is not the average orphanage. It is run by a lady named Miss Peregrine and is populated by children with extraordinary abilities, such as levitation, invisibility, extreme strength, etc. Jacob loves these stories and the photos that accompany them, but as he grows out of childhood, he begins to doubt the veracity of these tales. But then his grandfather is fatally wounded by a monster that only Jacob can see and murmurs cryptic warnings and instructions, Jacob wonders if there might be some truth to his grandfather’s stories after all. Haunted by nightmares, Jacob decides he must return to the site of his grandfather’s youth: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. He and his father pack up and head off to Wales in the hope of finding closure for their patriarch’s death. And then things get *really* interesting.
I read this book in just a couple of sittings and was completely enchanted. The appeal of this debut novel transcends age divisions and defies genres. The only reason I’m not giving it five stars is because I still haven’t worked out how I felt about the ending. Has it been so long that I’ve read an adult book that I’m not used to all the strings being tied up at the end? Or am I so used to teen books that I’m feeling like a sequel might be in the works?
While Violet’s mother is on vacation for the summer, Violet is sent to live with her artist father. After an embarrassing entrance at his art show, it becomes abundantly clear that her father is not particularly cut out to be a father. A wealthy Japanese art collector commissions Violet’s father for a mural in their Tokyo office and Violet finds herself heading off to Japan with her father and his business associates. In the meantime, the same associates have had priceless Van Gogh drawings stolen from their vaults. Violet suspects her father’s new girlfriend, but tells herself she’ll investigate more in Japan. Violet’s father sets himself to work on his mural while his employers deal with the Yakuza, claim to be the owners of the stolen art and imply that they will stop at nothing to get it back.
There are a lot of things that bothered me about this book. Many of the details are exceptionally convenient (Violet’s absent-minded father who can’t seem to be bothered to notice his daughter, the presence of Violet’s BFF who happens to be summering in Japan with her family, etc.), others are strictly red herrings. Violet is not particularly well-developed as a character, in spite of lengthy descriptions of her manga work-in-progress and her love of Japan. She is extremely naive and is fully convinced that she and her teenaged friend can solve a mystery before the Yakuza do. She never seems to question whether or not she is out of her depth. The mystery itself is totally convoluted and borderline confusing. The rest of the story isn’t well developed either, in spite of the fact that it drags on for 360 pages. There’s a lot of “telling” and not much “showing”. Odds are good the reader will figure out most of the mystery long before the characters do, provided they’re willing to stick it out to the end.
Rain is a quiet girl who attends a swanky private school in New York. The day after a party, Rain gets a call from the mother of an old friend wondering if Rain has seen her daughter. Rain had seen her old friend, Wendy, at the party the night before, but had left before Wendy. Within hours, a call from the police comes in with reports that Wendy’s body has been found in Central Park. Consumed with the guilt of not having acted on her instincts at the party and angry at the lack of compassion shown by her classmates, Rain decides to investigate a bit on her own.
Rain had previously been a close friend of Wendy’s, but Wendy had aspirations of popularity, which involved people and activities that Rain had little interest in. Wendy had since earned the reputation of being a party girl and notorious boyfriend stealer. In other words, Wendy had plenty of people who didn’t like her for a variety of reasons. When evidence that the killer may be a student at their prestigious boarding school is leaked, Rain becomes convinced that she knows who the killer is, but she must get out of her personal safety zone if she’s going to get justice for Wendy.
This book reads a lot like a Gossip Girls-style whodunnit. The lives of the characters are those of extreme privilege, which largely makes them unlikable. Rain as a character is interesting enough. She was born with a cleft palette, which led to years of speech therapy. As a result, she doesn’t like speaking out loud with people she doesn’t know well. She’s also surprisingly sympathetic to Wendy’s situation, but still relatively naive with regards to the lifestyle Wendy led. The plot moves fast and there are a few twists and turns, but observant readers will have the mystery solved long before the end of the book comes.
Deadly Stillwater, where Mac McRyan is confronted with the kidnapping of Shannon Hisle, taken in a brazen daylight attack outside a restaurant on one of St. Paul’s busiest streets. And Shannon Hisle isn’t just anyone. She’s the only daughter of St. Paul’s most prominent, successful and politically connected lawyer. Mac knows that every political lever will be pulled, that the FBI will be coming in, that the St. Paul Mayor, not his biggest fan, will be scrutinizing his every move and that the media storm will be every bit as intense as the heat wave blazing the Twin Cities. What’s more, while all of the signs point to a straightforward kidnapping for ransom, Mac’s instincts tell him otherwise, especially after the kidnappers call just hours after the abduction and skip the ransom demand. “Why not ask for the ransom?” he wonders.
Manuel Perrine doesn’t fear anyone or anything. A charismatic and ruthless leader, Perrine slaughters rivals as effortlessly as he wears his trademark white linen suit. Detective Michael Bennett once managed to put Perrine behind bars, the only official in the US ever to accomplish that. But now Perrine is out, and he has sworn to find and kill Bennett and everyone dear to him.
Detective Bennett, along with his ten adopted children, their nanny, and his grandfather, are hidden safely on a rural California farm, with guards courtesy of the FBI’s witness protection program. Perrine begins to embark on an escalating series of assassinations across the country, killings whose brazenness and audacity bring into question the possibility of safety and law in the US. The FBI has no choice but to ask Detective Bennett to risk it all in Perrine’s war on America.
With explosive action and fierce villainy that rivals James Bond movies at their best, GONE is the next astounding novel by James Patterson.
The most hated woman in Savannah, Georgia, is about to be set free. Twenty years ago, Blondell O’Henry was convicted of murdering her eldest daughter and wounding her two other children. The prosecution argued that beautiful, selfish Blondell wanted to be rid of them to be with her lover.
Now Blondell’s son, Niall, has recanted his testimony and demolished the case in the process. Reporter Nikki Gillette is determined to get the true story, and not just for professional reasons. Blondell’s murdered daughter, Amity, was Nikki’s childhood friend. The night she died, Amity begged Nikki to meet with her, insisting she had a secret to tell, but Nikki didn’t go. Her guilt is compounded by other complications–Nikki’s favorite uncle, Alexander, was the attorney who helped save Blondell from execution. And rumors swirl that he was one of her many lovers.
Nikki’s fiancé, Detective Pierce Reed, is concerned she may be compromising the case. As she digs for answers during one of the most sweltering summers in Savannah’s history, he also worries for her safety. Everyone involved seems to have secrets, from Blondell’s old boyfriend and his fundamentalist, snake-handling in-laws to the cop who led the original investigation. And somehow, the events of that tragic night connect to Nikki’s own fractured family. But now the killing has begun again. Is Amity’s murderer still at large, or is this a new, darker danger? Soon Nikki will discover what really happened twenty years ago, but the answers may come too late to save her life.