The Shepherd

The Shepherd
, ,

, Book # 1
Story Plant
January 14, 2011
ebook
328
English
June 27, 2018 July 1, 2018

Marcus Williams and Francis Ackerman Jr. both have a talent for hurting people. Marcus, a former New York City homicide detective, uses his abilities to protect others while Ackerman uses his gifts to inflict pain and suffering.

When both men become unwilling pawns in a conspiracy that reaches to the highest levels of our government, Marcus finds himself in a deadly game of cat and mouse trapped between a twisted psychopath and a vigilante with seemingly unlimited resources. Aided by a rogue FBI agent and the vigilante's beautiful daughter - a woman with whom he's quickly falling in love - Marcus must expose the deadly political conspiracy and confront his past while hunting down one of the must cunning and ruthless killers in the world.


About the book

This is the first volume of the series entitled “Shepherd” and is divided in 4 parts. The chapters are short except for 2 or 3 so the book reads quickly.

The only flaw is that I do not like it when the protagonist is involved in some crime and he is innocent.

However, I like the style.

Am I the only one who wants the killer to live? When he fights with Lewis (one of the policemen, not the main character) I hope he lives and kills Lewis instead. I do not know what my problem is, if I have one because I want a “bad guy” to win, but seeing who Lewis is (the rival who belongs to the “good” guys), I do not want him to win…

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The Bones of You

The Bones of You
, ,

Macmillan
August 24, 2017
ebook
315
English
June 22, 2018 June 27, 2018

When Kate receives a phone call with news that Rosie Anderson is missing, she’s stunned and disturbed. Rosie is eighteen, the same age as Kate’s daughter, and a beautiful, quiet, and kind young woman. Though the locals are optimistic—girls like Rosie don’t get into real trouble—Kate’s sense of foreboding is confirmed when Rosie is found fatally beaten and stabbed.

Who would kill the perfect daughter, from the perfect family? Yet the more Kate entwines herself with the Andersons—graceful mother Jo, renowned journalist father Neal, watchful younger sister Delphine—the more she is convinced that not everything is as it seems. Anonymous notes arrive, urging Kate to unravel the tangled threads of Rosie’s life and death, though she has no idea where they will lead.

Weaving flashbacks from Rosie’s perspective into a tautly plotted narrative, The Bones of You is a gripping, haunting novel of sacrifices and lies, desperation and love.


About the book

Rosie, an 18-year-old girl, disappears in a village in the English countryside, people think she is alive, but hopes soon die when her body is discovered in the woods near the village.

The book is divided into chapters (obviously) and there are multiple perspectives, which together try to solve the this girl murder. One of the point of view is Rosie’s who tells her life with flashbacks.

Another point of view comes from Kate, a local gardener, whose daughter is a friend of Rosie and who in turn becomes Rosie’s friend through their love for horses. Kate tells the present and from her narration we understand what happened.

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Among the Wicked

Among the Wicked
, , , ,

, Book # 8
Minotaur Books
July 12, 2016
ebook
320
English
June 18, 2018 June 22, 2018

Chief of Police Kate Burkholder is called upon by the sheriff's department in rural, upstate New York to assist on a developing situation that involves a reclusive Amish settlement and the death of a young girl. Unable to penetrate the wall of silence between the Amish and "English" communities, the sheriff asks Kate to travel to New York, pose as an Amish woman, and infiltrate the community.

Kate's long time love interest, State Agent John Tomasetti, is dead set against her taking on such an unorthodox assignment, knowing she'll have limited communication - and even less in the way of backup. But Kate can't turn her back, especially when the rumor mill boils with disturbing accounts of children in danger. She travels to New York where she's briefed and assumes her new identity as a lone widow seeking a new life.

Kate infiltrates the community and goes deep under cover. In the coming days, she unearths a world built on secrets, a series of shocking crimes, and herself, alone... trapped in a fight for her life.


About the book

This is the eighth book in Linda Castillo’s series focusing on the Amish community of Painters Mill. Kate Burkholder, ex-Amish, is traveling miles away from her community to solve an apparent accident in cold Ohio.

Usually I don’t like undercover cases especially if the protagonist has to travel so far from his/her city, but I understand that the author couldn’t write about Kate undercover in Painters Mills for obvious reasons. But I must say that the case is interesting, the undercover is not long or better said, between preparations and first contacts with the new city a third of the book has already gone by.

The case became even more interesting in the middle of the book when two Amish lead snowmobiles. But then I couldn’t handle when Kate gets in trouble… I mean… It’s the eighth book, maybe Kate doesn’t have experience in undercover work, but she has been a police officer for several years, is it possible that she doesn’t understand that spilling everything to the bishop put her in danger? I know that without this particular, there is no book, but the author could find a different turning point… Why she must always be in danger? It’s like Temperance Brennan, even in that series the protagonist is always in danger.

Despite this the case is more than interesting.

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Serpent

Serpent
,

, Book # 1
Pocket Star
June 1, 1999
ebook
480
English
April 4, 2018 June 2, 2018

The author of sixteen consecutive New York Times bestsellers unleashes a hero for the next millennium in an electrifying new series of unrelenting action and edge-of-your-seat thrills. Clive Cussler introduces us to Kurt Austin, the courageous leader of the NUMA exploration team.

When Kurt Austin, the leader of a courageous National Underwater & Marine Agency exploration team, rescues beautiful marine archaeologist Nina Kirov off the coast of Morocco, he becomes the next target of Texas industrialist Don Halcon. A madman bent on carving a new nation out of the southwestern United States and Mexico, Halcon’s scheme hinges on Nina’s recent discovery involving Christopher Columbus, and a priceless pre-Columbian antiquity buried in the battered remains of the sunken Italian luxury liner Andrea Doria. Only Kurt Austin and his crack NUMA team stand between Halcon and the Andrea Doria’s silent steel hull—and if their deadly mission fails, Halcon will ride to power on a wave of death and destruction.


About the book

I chose this book for the Popsugar challenge, for the prompt “a book with an animal in the title” since I had destined the one chosen previously to another prompt, but I must say I didn’t liked this too much.

The story is too long, the times that the NUMA is in danger is ridiculous, the bad guy had the potential to be a really bad guy but the final fight didn’t satisfied me.

There are so many questions left unanswered! How did the NUMA know where to go to solve the mystery? I did not understand how the went from the stone to Guatemala O_o Sometimes the writers draw the map of a land so we, readers, can also have a vision of the place, but there isn’t one here and I honestly did not understand anything of the description they have made of the map. And how did “the bad guy” know where to look if he did not see the stone?

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Dark Secrets

Dark Secrets
Det fördolda
, , ,
,
, Book # 1
Grand Central Publishing
2010
ebook
456
Swedish
Marlaine Delargy
March 27, 2018 April 4, 2018

It all begins with a call to the police. A sixteen-year-old boy, Roger Eriksson, has gone missing in the town of Västerås. A search is organized and a group of young scouts makes an awful discovery in a marsh: Roger is dead.

Meanwhile, Sebastian Bergman, psychologist, criminal profiler and one of Sweden's top experts on serial killers, is in Västerås to settle his mother's estate following her death. Sebastian has withdrawn from police work after the death of his wife and daughter in the 2004 tsunami.

When the Crime Investigation Department asks Sebastian for his help in Roger's case, his arrogant manner at first alienates the rest of the team. Pushing forward, though, they begin to make disturbing discoveries about the private school Roger attended....


Here it is another Einaudi book and here it is another book full of spelling mistakes. For the Italian version, what annoys me the most are the “yes” (sì) with the accent on the other way (I don’t even have the key on the keyboard to make that accent, how the hell do they print it?). Unfortunately, it interrupts the reading too much

As for the style, in my version the narrator’s point of views jump from one to another a little too much. For example, in one chapter Frederick starts talking about his feelings (even if in the third person) all of a sudden the team leader is talking (telling his feelings about another topic whatsoever). And this is not well defined, there is no space between the two narrators so you find yourself thinking “what the hell are they saying?”.

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Abandoned

Abandoned
, , ,

, Book # 4
Hodder & Stoughton
2009
ebook
448
English
March 21, 2018 March 27, 2018

For FBI Special Agent Smoky Barrett, the wedding of one of their own was cause for celebration. Until a woman staggered down the aisle, incoherent, emaciated, head shaved, and wearing only a white nightgown.

No one knows who she is or where she's come from or why she's chosen to appear in a church filled with law enforcement agents. Then a fingerprint check determines that the woman has been missing for nearly eight years that once she was someone's wife, someone's mother and a cop. Imprisoning her in a dark cell, depriving her of any contact with the outside world, her enigmatic captor was a man she didn't know and who seldom spoke, who punished her only when she failed to follow his most basic instructions designed to keep her alive.

Cold, businesslike, seemingly indifferent to his victims, he's a predator with an M.O. as terrifyingly inscrutable as any Smoky has ever encountered. As she fits together the pieces of what remains of his victim's fractured life, a chilling picture emerges of a killer every bit as calculating, masterful, and professional as Smoky and the team she leads a professional psychopath who doesn't take murder personally and never makes a mistake.

There's a reason he let one of his victims go free. And by the time Smoky pierces the darkness of his twisted mind, it may cost her more than she can bear to lose to escape. For a trap snapped closed the moment she took this case too much to heart.


About the book

The start is in slow motion, then the pace picks up. I read the first two chapters in two days (ok maybe the first 4), then I could not put it down.

I read this book in English because kobo does not have the translated version in Italian (not bad, I can read a whole book in English without having problems) and I must say that I like the style of the author. Of course, even in Italian it is his style but being translated, I do not know how much structure the translator changes, so reading a book in English has been different for once.

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The Templar Legacy

The Templar Legacy
, , ,

, Book # 1
Random House Publishing Group
February 21, 2006
ebook
514
English

Cotton Malone, one-time top operative for the U.S. Justice Department, is enjoying his quiet new life as an antiquarian book dealer in Copenhagen when an unexpected call to action reawakens his hair-trigger instincts–and plunges him back into the cloak-and-dagger world he thought he’d left behind.

It begins with a violent robbery attempt on Cotton’s former supervisor, Stephanie Nelle, who’ s far from home on a mission that has nothing to do with national security. Armed with vital clues to a series of centuries-old puzzles scattered across Europe, she means to crack a mystery that has tantalized scholars and fortune-hunters through the ages by finding the legendary cache of wealth and forbidden knowledge thought to have been lost forever when the order of the Knights Templar was exterminated in the fourteenth century. But she’s not alone. Competing for the historic prize– and desperate for the crucial information Stephanie possesses–is Raymond de Roquefort, a shadowy zealot with an army of assassins at his command.

Welcome or not, Cotton seeks to even the odds in the perilous race. But the more he learns about the ancient conspiracy surrounding the Knights Templar, the more he realizes that even more than lives are at stake. At the end of a lethal game of conquest, rife with intrigue, treachery, and craven lust for power, lies a shattering discovery that could rock the civilized world–and, in the wrong hands, bring it to its knees.


About the book

The Templar Legacy is the first book in the series starring Cotton Malone, a former CIA agent, who retired in Copenhagen, Denmark, where he opened a bookshop of ancient books, his long-standing passion. The book begins when his former boss comes to visit him in Copenhagen and even before she can meet Malone finds herself in a chase through the streets of the city when her purse is snatched. Between blackmail, murder, suicide, betrayal and escapes around Europe, will the former CIA agent solve the mystery?

I like this kind of conspiracies, I like hidden secrets, I like treasure hunts, I like the dark side of people, even the most devoted have one, so the plot intrigued me a lot. Style and details not so much. First of all: if the masters were 66 and have “governed” for 18 years (average) from the XII century onward, something isn’t right in the book, because (66×18 = 1188 years governed in total by the masters) +1150 (year of foundation of the templars) = 2338… and the book was written in 2006…  we are not in 2300 now… Can someone please explain this detail to me? Yes, I’m that kind of person who counts and looks after these details.

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The Black Echo

The Black Echo
, ,

, Book # 1
Orion
1992
ebook
570
English

LAPD detective Harry Bosch is a loner and a nighthawk. One Sunday he gets a call-out on his pager. A body has been found in a drainage tunnel off Mulholland Drive, Hollywood. At first sight, it looks like a routine drugs overdose case, but the one new puncture wound amid the scars of old tracks leaves Bosch unconvinced.

To make matters worse, Harry Bosch recognises the victim. Billy Meadows was a fellow 'tunnel rat' in Vietnam, running against the VC and the fear they all used to call the Black Echo. Bosch believes he let down Billy Meadows once before, so now he is determined to bring the killer to justice.


About the book

This is the first book in the series of a Los Angeles police detective called Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch. He has no family or life outside of his job, his father left the family when Harry was a kid and Harry’s mother turned to prostitution and was killed when Harry was eleven. After her death, Harry was assigned to the California child protection services. He spent the rest of his youth in a series of foster homes before joining the army. He is a Vietnam veteran traumatized by his experiences of war and after leaving the service, joins the police forces, becoming a leading detective in the Homicide Division.

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Those Who Follow

Those Who Follow
Wienerbrorskapet
, ,

, Book # 1
Aschehoug
January 15th, 2015
ebook
445
Norwegian

What starts off as a simple case of a missing person soon turns into a hunt for a brutal killer in a drama involving the members of a doomsday cult and monstrous experiments in racial purity dating all the way back to World War II. However, the tie to the past is yet to be uncovered when Superintendent Fredrik Beier is called to the scene of a mass murder in the outskirts of Oslo. The victims belonged to the isolationist doomsday cult "the Light of God". Initially, everything seems to point to a religious vendetta, but Fredrik and his new partner Kafa Iqbal are sceptical and soon another line of inquiry emerges. Fredrik suddenly finds himself in the middle of a murder case, hunting not only for a faceless killer, but also for answers as to what lies hidden in the sect leaders' mysterious pasts.


About the book

A Norwegian Christian sect is brutally attacked on their farm. A lot of the members are slaughtered, while others disappear. The police find a chemical laboratory when they arrive on the scene. Everything points to an Islamic group, but policemen Kafa Iqbal and Fredrik Beier discover that there is a bigger conspiracy, composed by a group of scientists who met in the 30s in Vienna.

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Isle of the Dead

Isle of the Dead
, , ,

, Book # 1
Quercus
January 1st, 2013
ebook
528
English

In 15th century Venice it is a dangerous time to be alive. A permanent winter has rolled in over the canals and bodies keep washing up on the banks of the city. These bodies are especially hard to identify, since they have been skinned.

In the present day, a famous portrait by Titian has been discovered. Its subject: the 15th century suspected murderer Angelico Vespucci. The skins of Vespucci's victims were never found, so his guilt was never proven. Although it is rumoured that when the portrait arises, so will the man. And when flayed bodies start turning up all over the world, it looks like this is more than just a superstition. A murderer has been called back to life, and he is hungry for revenge.


About the book

I read this book for the Popsugar challenge of “Your favorite prompt from the 2015, 2016, or 2017 Popsugar Reading Challenges”, I chose “a book of a female author”. At first I was convinced to read this book for the prompt “book with a heist”, but I remembered the title uncorrectly, even if there is a robbery in the book, but it is a very small fact compared to the actual robbery. Luckily it’s okay for another prompt (not that I wouldn’t read an extra book).

Of the author I read “The Caravaggio Conspiracy” before this and I really liked it. Sometimes (not always) I like intrigues born in the past and then brought into the present. This book starts in 1500 in Venice and ranges from London, Tokyo, New York and Venice itself.

When Gaspare Reni, an art collector, and Nino Bergstrom, his adopted son, come in possession of a Titian painting portraying the sixteenth-century murderer, Angelico Vespucci, they are alarmed by what might happen. There is a rumor that when the painting emerges, the sixteenth-century killer will also return, and in fact, shortly afterwards the one who found the painting is brutally murdered. Will Nino and Gaspare manage to get to the bottom of the painting legend, or will it be too late for the victims?

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