Abandoned

Abandoned Book Cover Abandoned
Smoky Barrett, Book #4
Cody McFadyen
Crime, Female Detectives, Mystery, Thriller
Hodder & Stoughton
2009
ebook
448

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 Cover The Templar Legacy
Cotton Malone, Book #1
Steve Berry
Crime, Historic Fiction, Mystery, Thriller
Random House Publishing Group
February 21, 2006
ebook
514

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 Cover The Black Echo
Harry Bosch, Book #1
Michael Connelly
Crime, Mystery, Thriller
Orion
1992
ebook
570

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

Wienerbrorskapet Book Cover Wienerbrorskapet
Fredrik Beier, Book #1
Ingar Johnsrud
Crime, Mystery, Thriller
Aschehoug
January 15th, 2015
Hardcover
445

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 Cover Isle of the Dead
Isle of the Dead, Book #1
Alex Connor
Crime, Historic Fiction, Mystery, Thriller
Quercus
January 1st, 2013
Paperback
528

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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Every Dead Thing

Every Dead Thing Book Cover Every Dead Thing
Charlie Parker, Book #1
John Connolly
Crimine, Mystery
Hachette UK
1999
ebook
480

The gripping first Charlie Parker novel from bestselling author John Connolly - perfect for fans of Stephen King and Jeffery Deaver. Tormented and racked with guilt over the brutal slaying of his wife and daughter, Charlie Parker, ex-cop with the NYPD, agrees to track down a missing girl. It is a search that will lead him into an abyss of evil. At the same time, he is warned by an old black woman in Louisiana that 'The Travelling Man' is about to strike again. Multiple strands converge with a horrific confrontation in which hunter and hunted are intimately connected by guilt.

About the book

When I bought this book, somewhere I read “Perfect for Jeffery Deaver’s fans”… but are you kidding? Please do not compare a thriller genius with this boring author.

To say that I got bored to death reading this book isn’t enough, the narrative is slow and most likely because of this boredom, I lost all the connections because I honestly don’t understand how the case of the disappearance of the woman can be connected to the murder of his wife and child.

The protagonist is unbelievable, alcoholic, drug addict and moreover a born criminal.

In the post in which I introduced this book, I said “hope I won’t be disappointed”, but yeah, it happened!! Never again!

Honestly I can not even summarize what happened, I just know that the protagonist is tormented by the death of his wife and daughter, and I have no idea how this is connected to everything else.

-5 stars for this book.

Bones of The Last

Bones of the Lost Book Cover Bones of the Lost
Temperance Brennan, Book 16
Kathy Reichs
Crime, Mystery, Thriller
Scribner
August 27th 2013
ebook
338

The body of a teenage girl is discovered along a desolate highway on the outskirts of Charlotte. Inside her purse is the ID card of a local businessman who died in a fire months earlier.

Who was the girl? And was she murdered?

Dr Temperance Brennan, Forensic Anthropologist, must find the answers. She soon learns that a Gulf War veteran stands accused of smuggling artefacts into the country. Could there be a connection between the two cases?

Convinced that the girl's death was no accident, Tempe soon finds herself at the centre of a conspiracy that extends from South America to Afghanistan. But to find justice for the dead, she must be more courageous - and take more extreme action - than ever before.

About the Book

I find this book in the series a little better than the previous one (at least Brennan is not kidnapped) but not a 5-star-book because once again Tempe looks like a teenager with her first crush with Ryan.

Tempe is in North Carolina and is called for the case of a young unknown woman found on the side of the road, in her purse, a document that belonged to an important local businessman who died some time earlier. Furthermore, she is involved in a case involving the bones of Peruvian dogs. She is also asked by her ex-husband, Pete, to clarify a case involving the son of another former marine, accused of shooting two Afghan citizens in the back so Tempe travels to Afghanistan to examine the bones.

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Cause of Death

Cause of Death Book Cover Cause of Death
Kay Scarpetta, Book 7
Patricia Cornwell
Crime, Mystery, Thriller
Berkley Publishing Group
August 1st, 1996
Paperback
356

It is New Year's Eve, the last day of Virginia's bloodiest year since the Civil War. Dr. Kay Scarpetta plunges into the murky depths of a ship graveyard to recover the very human remains of Ted Eddings, an investigative reporter. What kind of story was Eddings chasing below the icy surface of the Elizabeth River? And why did Scarpetta receive a phone call from someone reporting the death before the police were notified? She soon discovers that Eddings' murder is merely the first layer of something much deeper --- a labyrinthine conspiracy that will put all of her criminal and forensic knowledge to the test like never before. For Scarpetts, the real challenge won't be cataloging the growing number of dead bodies, but preventing herself and those she loves from becoming the next victims.

About the Book

Cause of Death is the 7th book in the series of detective stories about Kay Scarpetta,

I liked the book itself, the plot is compelling and when it comes to nuclear, I’m all for it since I’m a chemistry major, the only flaw is Kay, I know that is the main character but I really can not stand her relationship with Wesley or her long speeches with her niece… in all the books I’ve read so far, it is the usual story with Lucy. I liked Marino more here, even if I did not like him in the previous book or at least his jealousy, here I found his character improved with both Kay and Lucy.

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Lycke

Lycke Book Cover Lycke
Ellen Tamm, Book 1
Mikaela Bley
Crime, Mystery
Scribe Publications
March 26th, 2015
Paperback
352

‘Death, death, death,’ she whispered to herself. But it was already too late. The panic was growing inside her.

On a cold and stormy Friday in May, a young girl disappears without a trace from outside Stockholm’s Royal Tennis Hall.

The missing girl is Lycke, and assigned to report on her story is TV4’s hot-headed crime reporter Ellen Tamm. As the police begin their search, Ellen starts her own investigation, delving into Lycke’s life: her family, the nanny, the kids who taunted her at school.

As Ellen is drawn deeper into a tangle of secrets, lies, and betrayals — and frustrated by the odd behaviour of Lycke’s family, as well as corrupt police, her upstart new boss, and the disturbing threats being made against her — she becomes more and more possessed by the task she has been given, tortured by the echoes of her own past, of the darkness that haunts her.

Will she find Lycke before it is too late for either of them?

Mikaela Bley’s debut, 'Lycke', is the haunting first novel in the Ellen Tamm thriller series, and is an exciting new voice in Swedish crime writing.

About the book

Lycke is a Swedish detective story and the first in the Ellen Tamm series. Ellen is a journalist and has some personal problems, the one that stands out most is that she is a bit obsessed with death. She also has a secret and the disappearance of a child is likely to bring out this tragic part of her life.

I like the fact that the “secret” of the protagonist comes out in the middle and not immediately or at the end of the book. The reader thus becomes curious but does not need to read the entire book to ask what happened.

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Abducted

Abducted Book Cover Abducted
Lizzy Gardner, Book 1
T.R. Ragan
Crime, Female Detectives, Mystery, Thriller
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
May 29th, 2011
Paperback
354

When Lizzy Gardner was only seventeen, what should have been the perfect night became the perfect nightmare. Kidnapped just blocks from home after a romantic evening with her boyfriend, Jared, she woke up to find herself at the mercy of a depraved serial killer. Imprisoned and tormented for months by the maniac she came to know as Spiderman, Lizzy narrowly escaped, the only one of his victims to survive. But Spiderman escaped too, outwitting police and cursing Lizzy to spend her life looking over her shoulder…

Fourteen years later, Lizzy is a private investigator who teaches self-defense to teenage girls in her free time. She does what she can to help others protect themselves and to forget the horror of her ordeal, yet fears she will always be known as “the one who got away.” Then she receives a phone call from Jared, now a special agent for the FBI, with grim news. The killer has resurfaced, this time with a very specific target—Lizzy. And he’s made it clear that she will not escape him again. So begins a chilling game of cat-and-mouse, a terrifying, heart-pounding hunt that only one will survive.

About the Book

I hate spiders! I wish everyone on Goodread.com would stop posting spider images in the comment section, but no! Anyway, I loved the book!

So the main character was victim of a crime and I usually don’t like that, even if I like series like Kate Burkholder and Smoky Barret, but I liked this in the book. So I’m very picky when main characters are victims, too.

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