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Mini Reviews

***As I get back to blogging, one of my first tasks was to go through the drafts folder and weed out partially written posts. This post, though, is done, and there’s no reason not to publish it. So here ’tis!***

Mini-reviews!

L.A. Requiem by Robert Crais (mystery/suspense) – Recommended to me by Jen from Jen’s Book Thoughts, this is one of the Elvis Cole/Joe Pike novels. Joe Pike’s ex-girlfriend is found murdered, and her father asks Joe and Elvis to find her killer. If I was on a mystery/suspense binge, then I’d totally do Robert Crais. Highly recommended, despite a few things I found annoying in the beginning.

The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist – Picked by my book club, though this had been on my radar for quite some time. This book takes place in the future in a dystopian society where, if folks reach a certain age (50 for women, 60 for men) and aren’t needed by someone else (a father/mother, a husband/wife, or children), they’re sent to a facility to live while their organs are harvested for people with families until they finally have to give away  an organ that they can’t do without. This book gave me a lot to think about in regards to what makes someone important in society. This book was translated from Swedish, and while it definitely had a foreign feel, I have no complaints about the writing and was thrilled I had the chance to read this book. Highly recommended.

Burnt Shadows by Kamila Shamsie – At times I felt this book was brilliant, at other times I felt this book was so utterly boring that I considered putting it down and never picking it up again. When the atomic bomb is dropped on Nagasaki, Japan, Hiroko Tinaka was wearing a silk kimono with three black cranes across the back which are burned on to her skin during the bombing. The book follows Hiroko through most of her life, from losing her fiance in Nagasaki to falling in love again to having a son who gets caught up with terrorists. Unfortunately, the boring parts were too overshadowing of the brilliant parts, so I just can’t recommend this book.

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro – Just a freaking fantastic book set in the future, and there were numerous moments where I was like, Is what I think’s happening really happening? Ishiguro never really comes out and tells you This is what’s happening, which makes the book that much more intriguing. A great book for book clubs. Highly highly recommended.

A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick – I loved this book. Ralph orders a bride (“a reliable wife”) and Catherine responds. Both people have their own plans for the other: Catherine wants to marry Ralph and then kill him, and Ralph, well, he’s got plans as well, though he doesn’t plan on killing Catherine. I’ve got over 40 flags tagging various sentences/passages, which for me is a sign of a really great book. Highly recommended.

Good People by Marcus Sakey – This is the kind of mystery that would make a great book club pick. A nice couple find a load of cash, decide not to go to the police, and end up running from the criminals that it belongs to. It made me think a lot about what I’d do in that situation, and how I could best evade hardened criminals. Important stuff to think about, because you never know when you’ll find a sack full of money and need to run for your life. Fantastic book club fodder, no? Pretty highly recommended.

The First Rule by Robert Crais – This was the first book by Robert Crais that I read. This is what hooked me on him. A great storyline, fast pacing, and frankly not a whole lot of violence. A lot of implied violence, but we all know that our imagination is better than actually being told what happened. Highly recommended.

13 comments »

13 Responses to “Mini Reviews”

  1. Amanda ()

    The Unit is one of my very favorites from this year, and Never Let Me Go made my favorites a couple years back. 🙂

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  2. Sandy ()

    I love the Elvis Cole/Joe Pike series. I wouldn’t call it literary per se, but the characters are just plain hot (and so is the author). Lots of action and intrigue. I also loved Never Let Me Go. I haven’t seen the movie yet! As for Reliable Wife, I LOATHED it. Probably one of the few people that did, by the sounds of it. I wanted to throw the damn thing when I finished.

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  3. CrysHouse

    I LOVED Never Let Me Go. Ishiguro is a genius. I also enjoyed The Remains of the Day, but I can’t pretend it’s for everyone.

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  4. zibilee ()

    I have been wanting to read The Unit for a very long time, and I think your mention of it has finally pushed me over the edge. I also have a copy of A Reliable Wife, and need to read that one soon as well. It’s interesting to me to see your review of The Unit and Never Let Me Go in the same space, as I kind of think the books address similar issues. I love, love, love the mini-reviews Trish! Thanks for sharing them!

    [Reply]

  5. Glenn ()

    I think my wife has read this one.

    I’ll get her to jump on here and leave some comments about it.

    I saw this title on our coffee table so no wonder this blog article sounded familiar to me! LOL

    [Reply]

  6. Kathleen

    I love the mini-reviews. I want to read Reliable Wife!

    [Reply]

  7. Alita ()

    Never Let Me Go is definitely one you want to talk about afterwards. And midway. Glad you loved it!

    [Reply]

  8. Beth F ()

    I never did finish Burnt Shadows — just could not get into it.

    [Reply]

  9. Ryan ()

    I have Never Let Me Go. I just need to read it.

    [Reply]

  10. Literate Housewife ()

    I like your mini reviews! I have consistently been 11 reviews in the red. Maybe I need to just get the stragglers up and out. 🙂

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  11. Debbie's World of Books

    I enjoyed The Unit although quite disturbing. Reminded me along the same lines as Unwind by Neal Shusterman.

    [Reply]

  12. Lisa

    I really liked A Reliable Wife, too. It’s definitely a love it or hate it book, though and I’m always hesitant to recommend it.

    [Reply]

  13. veronica

    I loved Never Let Me Go. I’ve only read one other by the author (An Artist of the Floating World) but I think he’s incredible. Glad you enjoyed it.

    [Reply]

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