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Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Havana Storm by Clive Cussler and Dirk Cussler

Reviewed by Desere


First time read from this author for me, from the plot description it looked to be a promising action adventure set in the Caribbean.  It almost, almost made my top list, but there was some lacking in the actual action, the plot promised.

The read tells of Dirk Pitt , while investigating a toxic outbreak in the Caribbean Sea that may ultimately threaten the United States , Dirk becomes involved in something more dangerous, a post - Castro power struggle for control of Cuba.  Meanwhile his children are on a treasure seeking adventure of their own, they are chasing an Aztec stone that may reveal the whereabouts of a vast historical Aztec treasure. Their adventure leads them to Cuba, and squarely in harm's way. Father, son and daughter have faced some desperate adventures before but this time it seems to be dire.

As I said the action was there but did not quite hit the BOOM mark I am use to finding in action adventure , treasure seeking reads. It peek through and before it actually takes full growth it fades out and the next part of the story kind of just drag onward to the next almost action part.

Aside from the lack of action the book is fascinating , it's a good typical plot that certainly is entertaining , I mean it's not everyday you get to read about a missing stone that holds the clue to a treasure unlike ever seen before, oh okay maybe the treasure of King Tut comes close, but this books describes the treasure , or rather the author tries to make it sound far greater than the treasure of King Tut.

And then there is the mystery of the toxic waters, now that little getting all scientific part was fun to read!  I recommend this read for fans looking for some low key action adventure and for those who love to solve a mystery.

4.5 star review

" The Caribbean is meant to be magical , but what really lies beneath it's waters?"

Copy provided by Penguin Random House in exchange for a honest review 


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

What she left by TR Richmond

Reviewed by Desere


I have heard so many times of people passing away and then afterwards their family discovering secrets from diaries, notes, letters and other objects, the outcome is sometimes really great for all involved but sometimes the truth is a real shocker that can literally blow the family apart.

In this read Alice Salmon dies, she is gone but not forgotten at all. The after effects of her death is felt on the news , the internet and in the hearts of those that knew her best.

But the one person  who knows her most intimately is not a friend or a family member, he is Dr Jeremy Cook, an academic whose life has become one of piecing anything and everything together , that is everything  that is related to Alice.

For David recreating Alice's life by using her diaries, emails and her voice, becomes an everyday occurrence, and consumes his every waking minute. With every bit of information he finds he has to know more, and he keeps digging, but what will he do when he is shocked to the core by the secret Alice seemed to be hiding ?

This story really hit all the buttons of those " don't this and don't that on this and that" warnings the papers and our parents warn us about. It
was really scary to see how easily David is able to find the information about Alice.

I like to think that I can hide my untold secrets pretty well, and  that what I put out there will pretty much tell you what I like and don't like , and really that is about it. Even my Facebook posts simply just relate to books and more books, so I recon all you will be able to find is that I love reading.

But the author did an off the charts job at showing just how easily the mind can translate absolutely everything we write down, or post or say into anything the reader./ hearer / see-er wants it to. For example I can see the words " I hate CST" but all it means is that I don't like their products , but if some with an overactive imagination reads it and suddenly there is an occurrence of  a bad nature at CST then they will pretty much come up with the conclusion it was me.

So really if anything David's dedication or rather obsession with Alice has certainly taught me a valuable lesson. And I particularly loved Alice being brought to life it was insightful and very entertaining.

Highly recommended read!

5/5 star review
" She leaves, but is she really gone and what has she left behind ? 

Available now at Penguin Random House South Africa 


The Girl On the train by Paula Hawkins

Reviewed by Desere

This was a really interesting read. It dips in to  the lives of various characters , with really fantastic insight.

The main focus is on Rachel, she takes the exact same commuter train every single morning. It rattles down the tracks, past piles of old clothes, dirt and various houses.

But from all the houses it passes the one that get's Rachael's undivided attention every single day is the one where " Jess and Jason " lives. The couple intrigue Rachael, they fascinate her like no other. Then one morning as the train passes the house, Rachael sees something, it's only for a split second and the train is pass, but it's enough to make Rachael go to the police, but has this caused more harm than good?

Fast paced and a nice even flow are the first things I have to say about this read, it moved from point a to b at a really good pace, none of that stop start that is found in so many similar reads, that my dear reading friends drive me crazy !

I really loved the mystery in this book, but sadly I figured it out too quickly and I felt a little cheated that I was able to get it so fast.

Now that we have that out of the way I can tell you all about the most amazing part of this read, the unrealiable narrator , man it drove me crazy at first but then suddenly it all just became clear and it was like some kind of high to try and outsmart the narrator.

To sum it up , this is a terrific read for any reader that loves a great mystery, lots of emotional drama and loads of guessing if you don't pay attention.  Don't start reading this one if it's late at night , because after the third chapter it really grips the reader!

4.5 star review
" Rolling past the image that changes her life" 

Available now at Penguin Random House South Africa








Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Die Again by Tess Gerritsen



Reviewed by Desere

Boston Detective,Jane Rizoli is on the case of a big game hunter found dead in his apartment, alone with the body of a beautiful snow leopard he had recently been commissioned to procure and stuff for a high-profile museum in the area.

Medical examiner Maura Isles connects the case to a number of seemingly unrelated deaths where the victims have all been found hanging upside down, the hallmark of a leopard's kill.

Rizzoli follows the puzzling mystery all the way to Botswana, where she uncovers the unsolved mystery of a deadly camping safari four years prior. When she realizes the two cases are connected Rizzoli must track down the sole survivor of the tragic trip to discover who, or what is behind these gruesome deaths. Getting the sole survivor to help trap the killer is a whole other scenario.

From the blurb the book sounds intriguing and like a real page turner. It starts interestingly enough and grabbed my attention but very shortly after fell flat, it was like the author lost the plot somehow before picking it up again. Now of course this is my first time reading anything from this author and therefore am willing to freely admit that maybe it's just me and this could of course just be the author's writing style.

When I got to chapter 5 it picked up momentum and the author recaptured my attention  and the read became really enthralling hence the four star review and the fact that after it picked up again I could not put it down and four hours later found it all done and dusted.

The characters were intriguing and mysterious , just the way you would expect them to be in this category of reading and definitely gory enough to make even the most addicted of fans cringe with disgust.

I recommend this read for fans that like a bit of legend connected in their mystery and thriller reads, sadly for me I solved the case too long before the end and would have liked if the read was a little less predictable.

All in all a good afternoon pass-time for those looking to step foot into the world of mystery and murder for a few hours.

4 star review
" He tried to kill her once, will he fail again this time around?" 

** Copy provided by Penguin Random Houes Books South Africa

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Invincible by James Patterson



Reviewed by Desere

Everyone thinks Emma Dockery has gone mad, as in completely off the deep end! She's obsessed with finding the link between hundreds of unsolved cases, she's even gone as far as taking leave from her job as a FBI researcher.

Surrounding herself with newspaper clippings on the walls of her bedroom and night after night suffering through endless nightmares of a raging all-consuming fire, she dredges on day after day seeking to find that one vital clue to make the world believe her.

She of course comes off as so nuts that not even her ex-boyfriend, FA Harrison 'Books' Bookman will believe her crazy theory that hundreds of kidnappings, rapes and murders are somehow all connected. That all comes to a earth-shattering " now you believe me" moment when Emma finds the one piece of evidence not even Books can ignore.  As more and more murders are reported each passing day with no motives, no murder weapons in sight and zero suspects Emma's chances of proving the unthinkable seem bleaker with each murder, and worst of all, she might just die trying.

I loved this book, it had me guessing at each and every turn, and best of all it was one of those books that once you start, putting it away for later is simply just not possible. The author sucks you in to the mystery and there is no way you can leave this absolutely thrill ride of a book for even a second!

There was many twists and turns in this book, but not the kind that would have you thinking " I saw that coming!" and then silently keeping the " I so did not see it,  but I want to look smart " comments to yourself, no this author hits you with the unexpected when you least expect it and completely threw me for a loop each and every time.

I am a big fan of mystery reads and I am pretty good with solving the mystery after about six or seven chapters and long before the end, yet with this read I simply could just not get to it. Each time I thought I have it all worked out the author would bring forth such a rollercoaster of a twist it made me feel like Emma , back to square one!

I could not get enough of the emotion in this book, from frustration to anger to hurt to absolute " Eureka!" moments and back again to " Oh no, that did not just happen!!" very addictive !

I highly recommend this book for all fans of a fantastic, blow your mind, knock your socks off mystery reads. Once you start this book you will simply be trapped in this author's world and believe me you will not want to leave, it's simply too good to want to go!

4.5 star review
" Within the flames of hate lies the truth of death" 

*** Now available at Random House Struik South Africa 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Hellbounce The Arc Chronicles Part 1 by Matthew W Harrill


Hellbounce

Reviewed by Desere

In this read we get to meet prison hospital psychologist Eva Ross, as psychologist she has dealt with more than her fare share of sinners and saints.

Well okay I lie no saints just sinners, but I got your attention didn't I? Now back to Eva, from the corrupt, the insane, the downright nuts you name it the list goes on and on, Eva has had the chance to step into their minds and try to unlock the demons.

Then suddenly those around her become those that she cannot trust and instead they start to exhibit the same characteristics she has seen over and over again. The only way out is for her to turn to a stranger , a man whose name she is incapable of even remembering yet, he is her only sanctuary in the hell her life has become.

I have always been a very big fan of the horror world and all the juicy psychological thrills and spills that goes with it, so much so that everyone who knows me will know I can watch the scariest of movies, get up, switch off all the lights and go get into bed, without once checking the closet or taking a peek under the bed!

Likewise when it comes to reading, I never get the I feel like am being watched feeling to the extent where I truly have to look over my shoulder, nor do I jump out of my chair when the phone so much as beeps with a text message, but with this read all of the above happened more than once!

From the start the read was entertaining as all heck! I was on the edge of my seat from the start go and I did not move from the suspense spot until the very end. This author knows how to get your attention, hold it right through till the end and man oh man does this author have talent with a capital T!

The book was as hot and emotional as it was downright spine chilling. More than once I wanted to stick it in the freezer and pretend the hell was frozen but I was simply incapable of doing so, because as I said this author hooks you and hooks you fast and hard, there is no way you can stop reading once you start.

I highly recommend this read for all fans of reading, and heck if you are not a fan of this genre this is the book that will draw you in and keep you trapped for a long time, and feeling every single moment of fear, uncertainty, anger, rage and suspense.

The book also has a powerful message of no one is ever exactly as they seem and once the true person is revealed all hell will break loose but it comes down the survival of the fittest , just make sure that 's you!

A truly mystery filled, suspense packed, on the edge of your seat, toe curling , blood curling, screaming my head off read, and an absolute masterpiece of a book.  Best of all this is only part one, so there is loads of more kick ass awesomeness to come. All I will say is Matthew Harrill get your ass back to writing as in NOW!

5/5 star review
" Hell on earth doesn't come close to what she's about to go through" 

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

The Murder Bag by Toni Parsons



















Reviewed by Desere

The read tells of seven school friends, just like everyone they bonded with each other because they had no choice due to the school not being your everyday run of the mill school. This school takes "worthless" kids and turns them into men of the going to war, face anything, always be in power kind.

Not necessarily a bad thing but if you know what happens behind the closed doors you will just as I go into a squirming fit, but this is also what sets the scene for the big bang moments in this read.

Fast-forward a couple of years and we have each of of the seven boys now men with wives, businesses and addictions. One my one they start dying, only not the "Oh dear died because of some addiction of tragic natural event", nope these guys have their throats slashed open.

Enter Detective Max Wolfe, determined to always get his man, smart and focused at all times.  Only this is a killer like no other he has ever dealt with before and before long he's as trapped in the nightmare as the men dying, can he catch his man or is that men?

My first Toni Parsons book but so not the last! I was wonderfully lost inside this read I devoured it in twenty four hours!  A brilliantly clever plot that had me guessing only a few things and being totally surprised at the rest.

The mystery in this read was pure brilliance, I guessed the identity of  the killer three times and got it wrong every time, in that alone lies the truth that this is a truly remarkably crafted murder mystery read, I always get it by the second guess!

The characters were extremely well written and so realistic it was as if I could see them playing out their parts right in front of me. The scene descriptions were so well written it felt the fear, the anger and the knife slashing into the victims, truly gripping.

The book contains a fast array of characters but not the to extent as in some reads, where you feel there is just too much going on. Each character is as vital as the other one and they all made this read a roller-coaster ride of mystery, intrigue, a good educational look at weapons, and best of all a finale that will blow you away!

The book reads like a soft floating wind, not once did it feel as if it was dragging to get to a conclusion which I find in most thrillers happens too often.

I highly recommend this read for all fans of thrillers that entertain on every page. I look forward to another read from this author.

5/5 star review
" The bag of murder contains more than just a secret of the past"

** Copy provided by Random House Struik South Africa  in exchange for a honest review