Lisbeth Salander is Back

LisbethThe latest book featuring Lisbeth Salander as the girl with the dragon tattoo will be released this coming week.  Personally, I am not sure how I feel about this.  I loved Steig Larsson’s Millennium series and am not sure that I want to read the new book, written with a new author. It’s also not the first time that a new writer has been brought in to continue a popular series after an author has died. New books by writers with best-selling franchises, like Tom Clancy and Robert Ludlum, have continued long after their deaths.

The man chosen to write the new book, The Girl in the Spider’s Web, is David Lagercrantz. He’s written several biographies and a novel based on the life of the British mathematician Alan Turing. He’s best known though for ghostwriting an autobiography of a popular Swedish soccer player that was a huge best-seller in Sweden.

I will probably read the novel.  Larsson’s series is a little like a drug — hard to let go of.  I just hope I’m not disappointed.  After all, I did quit reading Robert Ludlum at some point.

Book Review: Bradstreet Gate

Bradstreet GateThe Booklover’s Rating:  ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Bradstreet Gate is a Harvard Yard gate that commemorates the puritan poet Anne Bradstreet and the 25th anniversary of women living in the Yard.  It is also the site of the murder of Julie Patel, a young woman on the eve of her graduation from the illustrious Ivy League school and a subsequent memorial to the young woman.

Kirman’s novel begins ten years after the murder, when a young reporter, Nat Krauss, contacts Georgia Reese (née Calvin) regarding her recollection of events surrounding the murder.  It is through this beginning that Kirman takes us back to 1997 and Reese’s interrogation by police.  From there we are introduced to the other players in the drama: Charles Flournoy, a young man from a blue-collar family who worked hard to get to Harvard; Alice Kovac, a Serbian immigrant who despises her family; and Professor Rufus Storrow, Jr., who teaches a controversial course on ‘Law and the Colonial State.’

The novel moves quickly and is a fast-paced and easy read.  At 320 pages, it just plotted intricately enough to keep you engaged and waiting to see what happens next.  These are certainly assets enough to recommend Bradstreet Gate.  The ending though may leave you wanting and that is the drawback.

Book Details:  Published by Crown (July 7, 2015), 320 Pages, ISBN:  978-0804139311.

Do you have the golden ticket?

Last WordLast month when Michael Koryta was in the Little, Brown warehouse signing copies of his new book Last Words, he wrote the word “Trapdoor” in seven of the books.  If you find one of these books, let him know via Facebook and you will get a complete Michael Koryta library! If you pre-order Koryta’s new book (due out August 18th) and submit your receipt on his Website, you will be sent a paperback of your choice.  Certainly an offer worth considering and the search could be a lot of fun!

Women and Thrillers

This morning I stumbled across an article in The Telegraph, entitled “Are women hardwired to love thrillers?”  Interesting.  The article particularly caught my attention because thrillers used to be the mainstay of my reading list, and probably still is to some extent.  Lately though, thrillers just aren’t thrilling.  For example, this past fall I tried to read Tim Johnston’s Descent, but found that it just didn’t hold my attention.  Descent was a book that should have been a terrific read from all accounts out there on the Internet.  Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes also received good reviews, but in both the case of Descent and Broken Monsters there were large sections of the book that I just skipped.  The movie Gone Girl was good, but when all was said and done, I was glad that I didn’t read the book and saw the movie instead.  Thrillers should be thrilling!  When you read a thriller, it should be just that and every page of the book should keep you glued for what comes next.

The closest I have come to a thriller that held my attention lately and kept me reading was One Step Too Far by Tina Seskis.  Seskis’ book has a twist to it that is VERY surprising.  This may be the problem with most thrillers lately.  They have gotten a little formulaic and many readers can figure out the ending before the writer gets there.  The twist to the end has been done before and I’ve already read it or the action sequences just drag on too long.

While I agree with Rebecca Whitney, the author of The Telegraph‘s article and the author of The Liar’s Chair, that thrillers and crime novels are especially interesting to women,  I need something new and even scary.  A book that won’t have me skipping large sections to get to the end.

Any suggestions?

Meat That Tastes Like Dessert


Yesterday evening, I watched Matt Lauer’s interview with Dan Brown, author of The Lost Symbol, Angels and Demons, and The DaVinci Code.  The interview was interesting, and at the same time disappointing.  The interview just seemed to skim the surface of the many subjects Dan Brown raises.  The interview was not “meat that tastes like dessert,” although I would have to agree with Mr. Brown that his books are definitely that!

I highly recommend Dan Brown’s most recent novel, The Lost Symbol.  There have been some negative interviews posted on the Internet, but I throughly liked the book and would give it five hearts (♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥). 

Although you can read The Lost Symbol alone if you have not read any of Mr. Brown’s books, I would recommend reading the three novels mentioned in this post in orderor watch the movies for the first two and then read The Lost Symbol.  I rarely make a suggestion to watch the movies, but these two directed by Ron Howard were quite well done.

Have you read The Lost Symbol? Did you love it or hate?  Was it just okay?  Let me know what you think by leaving a comment!

Book Review: Jericho’s Fall

imagesThe Booklover’s Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥

My most recent read was Jericho’s Fall by Stephen Carter.  I loved his book The Emperor of Ocean Park  and I gave it a rating of four stars on 

I have to admit that I was somewhat disappointed in this book.  As another reviewer wrote, “NOTHING HAPPENS!”  I have to agree with that reviewer.  I just kept waiting for the book to take off, but it never did.  There was one big surprise for me toward the end, but all in all it was just okay.

Now, I did give the book three hearts.  I wouldn’t say not to read it at all, just that if you did read The Emperor of Ocean Park you will probably be disappointed in this book.

Book Details:   Published by Knopf (July 14, 2009), 368 pages, ISBN-10: 0307272621, ISBN-13: 978-0307272621