Turtles All the Way Down by John Green My rating: 2 of 5 stars This book, no matter how extremely well written, is not for me. I read fiction to escape from reality. Green pens a fine novel that expertly mirrors reality. His descriptions of the protagonist’s debilitating anxiety disorder captures much of what she must be feeling and transforms it into a written word. That’s no small feat. However, the main story line itself lacks substance, and I am disappointed by the way Green minimizes the plot in favor of character development. This book feels like a homework assignment. … Read More
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas My rating: 5 of 5 stars A connoisseur of young adult literature, you stumble onto your reading queue and realize that nothing in your “read” pile contains the author Sarah J. Maas. This needs to be rectified. Picking up the Throne of Glass and seeing the attractive teenage protagonist on the cover, your mind gives you the imagery of what to expect. It should start with a kick-ass female, who not only is physically skilled and attractive, but also highly intelligent. The setting appears to be bronze age, plus or minus magic, and … Read More
Dan and Darin Brown in Portsmouth NH, after Dan’s talk about Origins, his new Robert Langdon novel based in Spain. I am now the proud owner of a first edition signed copy, plus he signed my DaVinci Code too. His father, Dick Brown, gave me all the rules of Pickleball, his new favorite sport. Dick finally conceded that I might be able to beat him at tennis, although he always made me run like a madman when we used to play doubles! Fun night!
The Meridian Ascent by Richard Phillips My rating: 5 of 5 stars I love Richard Phillips! The Meridian Ascent is the culmination of three trilogies, and it is imperative that you read the prior eight books before this one. The first series, the Rho Agenda Inception, consists of Once Dead, Dead Wrong, and Dead Shift. Philips uses these books to develop the character of Jack Gregory, including documenting his relationship to Anchanchu, and his initial exploits with later partner Janet Price. Some foreshadowing with regards to Anchanchu’s nature appears during the second book, where the true use of the Incan … Read More
First Year by Rachel E. Carter My rating: 4 of 5 stars This is a very good series introduction. From the critical side, my first impression was that Rachel Carter broke one of the cardinal rules of naming lead characters–using one that could be hard to pronounce. “Ryiah” doesn’t flow from the tongue. Perhaps it is just me, but I still don’t know how to say it. The phrase “you guessed it” also made me cringe when it appeared outside a quotation, as I think she tried a bit too hard write like a 15 year old girl. I also … Read More
Three Minutes to Midnight by A.J. Tata Following up on a great first book, Tony Tata pens another strong action thriller where Jake Mahegan saves the day. The plot unfolded nicely, intertwining Mahegan’s revenge on the man who killed his mother with the domestic terrorist attack. The military jargon throughout reminds you that Tata is a general himself, and since the protagonist is a soldier, it works. My favorite character is Grace, a local whom Mahegan recruits into his cause. The only major drawback of the book was the question of motivation behind Maeve Cassidy’s need to continue drilling once … Read More
If you like high tech science fiction with a young adult premise, check out The Second Ship, by Richard Phillips. I loved the entire Rho Agenda trilogy. I posted a review for the first book in the series on Goodreads: