Friday, August 31, 2012

Mirror, Mirror.....

In Lawrence Kelter's novel "Palindrome", Book 1 of the Palindrome Trilogy, Lexa and Axel are a sister and brother who have struggled together throughout their lives.  As the novel begins they are living in a home that was left to them by a deceased aunt and living a quiet life.  They have the ability to change their appearance from the inside out right down to the color of their eyes.  They keep the ability hidden because they know it can lead to trouble.

When Lexa is slipped a date-rape drug in a local dive bar Ax arrives in the nick of time to rescue her.  He confronts the would-be rapist in his sister's form and kills him with one swift, well-placed kick.  So begins a tangled web of revenge and deception.

The character of Lexa was more developed than Ax in this story.  Regardless, we know enough of Ax to see that they are mirror opposites of each other.  Lexa is impulsive and somewhat flighty, while Axel is very methodical and grounded.  I think we will probably learn more about Ax as the series continues.

Palindrome is definitely hard to put down.  Kelter keeps the pace brisk with a subtle tension to hold your interest.  The ending will shock you and leave you asking for book two.  I know it's on my list of TBR.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Last Chances

"The Odds", by Stewart O'Nan is a tale of the everyday citizen.  Art and Marion Fowler are a middle-aged couple heading towards collapse.  Their home is on its way to foreclosure and their marriage is on the brink.

In a desperate attempt to turn things around they liquidate their savings and head to Niagara Falls on Valentine's Day weekend for a second honeymoon and to risk it all on the roulette wheel.

Art has great hope that the ritziest suite in the hotel, the ring he's kept secret and the reminders of the first honeymoon will rekindle the flame of their marriage.  He's also convinced that his betting method will guarantee them double their money on the roulette wheel.

Marion is tired of it all and looking forward to starting fresh on her own.  She goes along with Art's plans so as not to disappoint him.

O'Nan has created very real characters and gives us an honest glimpse into the heart breaks and disappointments that can eat away at a relationship.  He also reminds us that life is a gamble and to take that last chance.

A Vision of the Future

"Trophy" by Paul M. Schofield is the first book in The Trophy Saga.  The year is 475 NVE (New Victorian Empire) and the technology has been developed to travel throughout space and other planets have been settled.  The New Victorian Empire began after the collapse of the Earth's environment.  The Empire is run by a super computer that is guarded by women.  The computer has restored the environment but mankind is facing extinction.

Enter Star-Commander Abigail VanDevere and Lieutenant Janet Rogerton.  They must track down the rebel Galen Bestmarke who has Louis Franelli in his grasp.  Franelli is a scientist who has developed the technology to time travel.  Time travel will be the key to stopping the extinction of mankind.  Of course Bestemarke is using the technology to travel back in time to collect "trophies".  I will let the reader discover what that entails on their own.

I loved the concept of the story.  It was very well though out and developed and kept my interest throughout.  Schofield even provides a glossary at the end that provides details about terminology and equipment in the new empire.

One of my favorite parts was the guide/pouncer mind link between the humans and cats.  Of course I am a cat lover.  Great read!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Evil Has a Handsome Face

"Zeke", by Wodke Hawkinson, is a dark and thrilling ride.  Sue is a young college student who meets Zeke at the bookstore he works in.  He's gorgeous and mysterious.  Sue can't believe her good fortune that he wants to go out with her.

It will soon turn to misfortune as Zeke begins to manipulate her and play mind games.  After a number of months of secretive dating he talks her into disappearing with him.  When her parents realize she is missing and her car is found abandoned by a cemetery they hire a detective to find her. The detective soon realizes that her life is in danger and the race is on.

This is a chilling and very disturbing read.  It is not for the faint of heart.  The character of Zeke is twisted and evil.  The writers did a fabulous job of slowly revealing his deranged personality.  Sue was very believable as a young, insecure woman entranced by the handsome stranger.  I liked that she did assert herself at times during the course of the story.

It is definitely a great read, just be forewarned that it is a dark story of sexual obsession and evil.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Swept Up in War Fever

"Garrick's Landing", by Rita Wheeler is a great period piece that takes place in Nashville, Tennessee at the beginning of World War II.  Lainey Marston is a seventeen year old woman who is poised to graduate high school and head off to college.  When her friend asks her to take her and her fiance to Corinth so they can get married at the court house she reluctantly agrees.  Her boyfriend, Brice Garrick, tags along and decides that they should get married too.  He pressures a very reluctant Lainey into the marriage because he'd recently enlisted and may not return from battle.

Lainey immediately regrets the marriage and when she returns home and tells her father, a well-respected banker, he offers to take care of it for her.  Brice, who comes from a far different background than her, refuses to accept that Lainey doesn't want to stay married.  His family feels the same.  Thus the ground work is laid for a very interesting story.

The character development was very good in the story.  I loved Oralee, the strong minded, loving maid that practically raised Lainey.  Lainey was a strong female character as well.  Even though she let Brice guilt her into marrying him, she stood up for her right to leave the marriage.  Brice, while not likeable, was very believable.

Overall it was a very entertaining read and I had a hard time putting it down.