Thursday, July 20, 2017

Review: Another Man's Ground (Sheriff Hank Worth #2) by Claire Booth








  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1744 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1250084415
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books (July 11 2017)
  • Sold by: Macmillan CA
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01N6ILUGL

Book Description

 The next taut, witty mystery featuring Branson, MO’s new sheriff Hank Worth from acclaimed author Claire Booth.

Called out to investigate the theft of elm tree bark (who knew it made a valuable herbal supplement?), Branson, MO Sheriff Hank Worth meets the talkative and combustible property owner, Vern Miles, who is trying to make enough money off the land he just inherited to pay the taxes on it.

The thieves have stripped so much of the bark that the trees are now dying, so Miles decides to go ahead and cut the whole grove down. The only thing is, he uses undocumented workers to do it, and when Hank and Sam stop by the clearing in the woods to check on things, the whole crew takes off like a flock of birds. One unfortunate runaway laborer tumbles into a deep crevice and lands on not one, but two bodies—a month-old rotten corpse and a decades-old child skeleton.

Hank suddenly finds himself in the midst of two separate murder investigations, not to mention tree bark theft, all while running for re-election as county sheriff.



About the Author

 Claire Booth is a journalist and author who has written about crime for decades. She’s covered everything from the theft of the Aston Martin used in the James Bond film Goldfinger to the Laci Peterson murder and the San Francisco dog mauling case, where two lawyers were convicted of killing their neighbor with vicious dogs they kept for an imprisoned friend.

She also covered the case of Taylor Helzer, a Northern California man who convinced two followers he was a prophet of God. In order to raise money for their end-of-days scheme, the group extorted money from a retired couple and then killed them and three others to cover their tracks. The tremendously complicated quintuple murder case is the basis for her first book, the non-fiction The False Prophet: Conspiracy, Extortion and Murder in the Name of God.

After living with that case for so long, Claire decided she’d had enough of the real world and turned to fiction. Her first novel, The Branson Beauty, was published in 2016, and the second in the series, Another Man’s Ground, comes out in July 2017.



My Review

 Another Man's Ground is the second Sheriff Hank Worth by author Claire Booth. This is the first book of Booth's that I have read and I really enjoyed it.

Another Man's Ground is set in Branson County, Missouri which is just south of Springfield in the Ozark Mountains. Sheriff Hank Worth is up for re-election while trying to solve two murders as well as find out who stole elm tree bark. Then there is the long simmering feud between property owners. And undocumented workers hiding in the woods.

Another Man's Ground is an interesting and entertaining read that mystery fans will love. I enjoyed getting to know Sheriff Hank and his family and co-workers. I found this book to be well written and a pleasure to read. I'm looking forward to the next book in the series.

Highly recommend Another Man's Ground.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Review: A Talent for Murder by Andrew Wilson



  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3492 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books (July 11 2017)
  • Sold by: Simon & Schuster Canada, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01M740SP1

Book Description

Discover the real-life mystery centered on the queen of crime herself: Agatha Christie. In this tantalizing new novel, Christie’s mysterious ten-day disappearance serves as the starting point for a gripping novel, in which Christie herself is pulled into a case of blackmail and murder.

“I wouldn’t scream if I were you. Unless you want the whole world to learn about your husband and his mistress.”

Agatha Christie, in London to visit her literary agent, is boarding a train, preoccupied with the devastating knowledge that her husband is having an affair. She feels a light touch on her back, causing her to lose her balance, then a sense of someone pulling her to safety from the rush of the incoming train. So begins a terrifying sequence of events—for her rescuer is no guardian angel, rather he is a blackmailer of the most insidious, manipulative kind.

“You, Mrs. Christie, are going to commit a murder. But, before then, you are going to disappear.”

Writing about murder is a far cry from committing a crime, and Agatha must use every ounce of her cleverness and resourcefulness to thwart an adversary determined to exploit her expertise and knowledge about the act of murder to kill on his behalf.

In A Talent for Murder, Andrew Wilson ingeniously explores Agatha Christie’s odd ten-day disappearance in 1926 and weaves an utterly compelling and convincing story around this still unsolved mystery involving the world’s bestselling novelist.



A TALENT FOR MURDER: A Novel by Andrew Wilson
Atria Hardcover | ISBN: 9781501145063 | On sale: July 11, 2017 | 320 pages | $26.00
eBook: Atria | ISBN: 9781501145087 | On sale: July 11, 2017 | 320 pages | $13.99


Assets
Grab the high-res cover here
Grab the author photo

Find Andrew Wilson Online
Twitter: @andrewwilsonaw

Order


About the Author



Andrew Wilson is the highly-acclaimed author of biographies of Patricia Highsmith, Sylvia Plath, Alexander McQueen, as well as Shadow of the Titanic: The Extraordinary Stories of Those Who Survived. His first novel, The Lying Tongue, was published by Atria in 2007. His journalism has appeared in The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Observer, The Sunday Times, The Daily Mail, and The Washington Post. 


My Review

A Talent for Murder is the first book by Andrew Wilson that I have read. Agatha Christie disappeared for 10 days in 1926 and this novel explores what may have happened during those ten days. Very interesting. A must read for fans of Agatha Christie.



Thursday, July 13, 2017

Review: Get Out of That Pit: Straight Talk about God's Deliverance Paperback – July 11, 2017 by Beth Moore








  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (July 11, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0718095820
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718095826

Book Description


From her first breath of fresh air beyond the pit, it has never been enough for Beth Moore to be free.
This best-selling author and Bible teacher who has opened the riches of Scripture to millions longs for you to be free as well—to know the Love and Presence that are better than life and the power of God’s Word that defies all darkness.

Beth’s journey out of the pit has been heart-rending. But from this and the poetic expressions of Psalm 40 has come the reward: a new song for her soul, given by her Saviour and offered to you in Get Out of That Pit—friend to friend. This is Beth’s most stirring message yet of the sheer hope, utter deliverance, and complete and glorious freedom of God:

I waited patiently for the Lord
He turned to me and heard my cry
He lifted me out of the slimy pit
He set my feet on a rock
He put a new song in my mouth
It is a story, a song—a salvation—that you can know too.

[New Cover for 10th Anniversary]


About the Author

 Beth Moore is a teacher and writer of bestselling books and Bible studies whose public speaking engagements carry her all over the United States and the world. A dedicated wife, mother of two, and happy grandmother to two, Mooreleads Living Proof Ministries.

My Review

 Beth Moore is brave and she is my hero and I love everything she writes. Get Out of That Pit was first released in 2007. I am reviewing the latest edition which is a paperback released on July 11, 2017. It celebrates the 10 year anniversary of the book with a new cover.

Get Out of That Pit is based on Psalm 40: 

I waited patiently for the Lord
He turned to me and heard my cry
He lifted me out of the slimy pit
He set my feet on a rock
He put a new song in my mouth


Followers of  Beth Moore know of the struggles that she has been through in her life. She delves into her own pain to help her readers find their hope in God. She writes with a gut wrenching honesty that can penetrate the hardest of hearts. She wants God to put a new song in your mouth and in your heart. She wants you to know that just as the Lord rescued her from the slimy pit, he can rescue you as well.

Do you know someone going through problems right now? Or are you looking for a great book for your women's bible study group? Get Out of That Pit would be great for both.

Highly recommend Beth Moore's Get Out of That Pit: Straight Talk About God's Deliverance.

Review: Fast Falls the Night (Bell Elkins #6) by Julia Keller




  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Print Length: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books (Aug. 22 2017)
  • Sold by: Macmillan CA
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01MYDNKF0


Book Description

In the next powerful mystery from Julia Keller, a murder investigation leads West Virginia prosecuting attorney Bell Elkins to the shattering truth about her own past.

The first drug overdose comes just after midnight, when a young woman dies on the dirty floor of a gas station bathroom. To the people of Acker’s Gap, it is just another tragedy. It is sad—but depressingly familiar.

But then there is another overdose. And another. And another.

Prosecutor Bell Elkins soon realizes that her Appalachian hometown is facing its grimmest challenge yet: an unprecedented number of heroin overdoses from a batch tainted with a lethal tranquilizer. While the clock ticks and the bodies fall, Bell and her colleagues desperately track the source of the deadly drug—and engage in fierce debates over the wisdom of expending precious resources to save the lives of self-destructive addicts.

Based on a real-life event, Fast Falls the Night takes place in a single 24-hour period, unfurling against the backdrop of a shattering personal revelation that will change Bell’s life forever.


About the Author

Julia was born and raised in Huntington, West Virginia. She graduated from Marshall University, then later earned a doctoral degree in English Literature at Ohio State University.

She was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University and has taught at Princeton and Ohio State Universities, and the University of Notre Dame. She is a guest essayist on The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer on PBS and has been a contributor on CNN and NBC Nightly News. In 2005, she won the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing.

Julia lives in a high-rise in Chicago and a stone cottage on a lake in rural Ohio.


My Review


Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide;
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me.
Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see—
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
I need Thy presence every passing hour;
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s pow’r?
Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.
I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness;
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.
Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies;
Heav’n’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.


Fast Falls the Night is the sixth Bell Elkins novel by Julia Keller. You'll understand why I have included the hymn lyrics when you read the book!  This is a fabulous series and I have read every book. Fast Falls the Night is an excellent addition to the series. The reader is left with some cliffhangers at the end. So now I am dying for the next book!

Fast Falls the Night blazes through a 24 hour period in Acker's Gap, West Virginia. Heroin has become the drug of choice for the opioid addicted people of Appalachia and when it is cut with carfentanil then the overdoses and deaths begin. I am from Vancouver where this is also a massive daily problem so I am very familiar with the deadly carfentanil. Just like the day after Welfare Wednesday in Vancouver, drug overdoses are happening one after another. With the county strapped for funds, even Bell is helping with the crisis.

Fast Falls the Night is quite the ride for readers. And there is a big bombshell at the end. Author Keller does an amazing job of fairly and accurately portraying the people involved in the drug crisis. She has heart but is also realistic.

I love this series. I highly recommend Fast Falls the Night.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Review: Persons Unknown (DS Manon Bradshaw #2) by Susie Steiner




  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 952 KB
  • Print Length: 310 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers (June 27 2017)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers CA
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01M313VRK

Book Description

The sequel to Susie Steiner’s bestselling MISSING, PRESUMED

Manon has settled back into life in Cambridgeshire with her adopted son Fly. She’s perfectly happy working on cold cases until a man is stabbed to death just yards from the police station, and both the victim and the prime suspect turn out to be much closer to home than she would like. How well does Manon know her loved ones, and are they capable of murder?


About the Author

 Susie grew up in north London, studied English at university and trained as a journalist. She worked in newspapers for 20 years, 11 of them on staff at The Guardian. Her first novel, Homecoming, was published by Faber & Faber to critical acclaim in 2013. Her second, Missing, Presumed was a Sunday Times bestseller which introduced detective Manon Bradshaw. It was a Richard & Judy book club pick and has sold 200,000 copies to date in the UK. Missing, Presumed was selected as one of the Guardian’s, Wall Street Journal’s and NPR's standout books of 2016. It was longlisted for the Theakston's Crime Novel of the Year. Persons Unknown, the sequel to Missing, Presumed, is her third novel. She has written extensively about losing her eyesight to Retinitis Pigmentosa (click the 'journalism' tab for these articles). She lives in London with her husband and two children and is currently working on a third Manon Bradshaw mystery.

My Review

 Persons Unknown is the second DS Manon Bradshaw tale by Susie Steiner. I completely enjoyed Missing, Presumed and Persons Unknown did not disappoint. It is a fantastic police procedural set in the UK.

I have loved getting to know DS Manon Bradshaw in the two books in this series. Manon's character goes through so much in Persons Unknown and the reader is with her every step of the way. The supporting characters also are more fleshed out in Persons Unknown.

Susie Steiner is a great storyteller. There are so many twists in Persons Unknown that I could not bear to put it down.

Highly recommend Persons Unknown. I cannot wait until the next book!!!



Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Review: Missing, Presumed (DS Manon #1) by Susie Steiner








  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1018 KB
  • Print Length: 416 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers (July 5 2016)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers CA
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B018QMZR24

Book Description

For readers of Kate Atkinson and Tana French comes a page-turning literary mystery that brings to life the complex and wholly relatable Manon Bradshaw, a strong-willed detective assigned to a high-risk missing persons case.

Manon Bradshaw is a devoted and respected member of the Cambridgeshire police force, and though she loves her job, what she longs for is a personal life. One night, after yet another disastrous internet date, she turns on her police radio to help herself fall asleep, but she soon receives an alert that sends her to a serious crime scene.

Edith Hind—a beautiful graduate student and daughter of the Royal Family’s surgeon—has been missing for nearly twenty-four hours. Her home offers few clues: a smattering of blood in the kitchen, her keys and phone left behind, the front door ajar but with no signs of forced entry.

The investigation starts with Edith’s loved ones: her attentive boyfriend, her reserved best friend, and her patrician parents. As the search widens and press coverage reaches a frenzied pitch, secrets begin to emerge about Edith’s tangled love life and her erratic behavior before her disappearance. With no clear leads, Manon summons every last bit of her skill and intuition to close the case, and what she discovers will have shocking consequences not just for Edith’s family but for Manon herself.
Suspenseful and keenly observed, Missing, Presumed is a brilliantly twisting novel of how we seek connection, grant forgiveness, reveal the truth about who we are.

******

 Mid-December, and Cambridgeshire is blanketed with snow. Detective Sergeant Manon Bradshaw tries to sleep after yet another soul-destroying Internet date – the low murmuring of her police radio her only solace.

Over the airwaves come reports of a missing woman – door ajar, keys and phone left behind, a spatter of blood on the kitchen floor. Manon knows the first 72 hours are critical: you find her, or you look for a body. And as soon as she sees a picture of Edith Hind, a Cambridge post-graduate from a well-connected family, she knows this case will be big.

Is Edith alive or dead? Was her ‘complex love life’ at the heart of her disappearance, as a senior officer tells the increasingly hungry press? And when a body is found, is it the end or only the beginning?


*****

Missing, Presumed is fast-paced, twisty and full of realistic characters and scenarios. With any luck Detective Bradshaw will be back in future instalments, since she is a quirky, likable character, capable of carrying a series. (Vancouver Sun)^[Steiner] gets inside the minds and lives of her book’s socially disparate personalities with the grace of a novelist of manners, even as she pulls tight the strands of one of the most ambitious police procedurals of the year. (The Wall Street Journal)^This novel stands out from the pack. . . . A highly charismatic and engaging story. (Kirkus (starred review))^A vein of dark humor pulses beneath this compelling whodunit with an appealing, complicated heroine at its center. (Publishers Weekly)^Where Steiner excels is in the depth and clarity with which she depicts her characters. Manon is sad and lonely, estranged from her sister and something of a misanthrope. But she’s also funny and clever, and interesting. I defy you not to fall for her. (The Observer (Thriller of the Month))^Steiner’s engrossing, gripping and wry prose, beautifully detailed storytelling and the wonderfully drawn DS Manon Bradshaw elevate this missing person novel into something quite spectacular and deeply satisfying. (Red Online)^This clever, witty novel is one of those rare books that marries excellent writing and memorable characters with an absorbing plot and a startling twist. (Sunday Express)^Susie Steiner knows how to capture the reader’s attention, keep her enthralled and sign off neatly. Missing, Presumed is an excellent crime novel. (Literary Review)^Missing, Presumed is an extraordinarily assured police procedural in the tradition of Ruth Rendell and Elizabeth George--the surprises continue to the last page as Steiner blasts expectations and assumptions to dig deep into questions of trust, betrayal, class, and family bonds. Dazzling. (Joseph Finder, New York Times-bestselling author of Paranoia and Company Man)^The mystery behind Edith Hind’s disappearance is filled to the hilt with provocative breadcrumbs, making for a page-turning literary crime novel that is nicely balanced by the all-too-relatable human foibles of lonely Detective Sergeant Manon Bradshaw. A complex, gripping read! (Suzanne Rindell, author of The Other Typist and Three-Martini Lunch)^An intriguing mix of light and shade. Missing, Presumed is held in place by DS Manon Bradshaw: a messed-up, big-hearted detective in the best tradition. (Harriet Lane, author of Her and Alys, Always)^Detective Manon Bradshaw is appealing, multi-faceted, and unforgettable. She charges through Missing, Presumed with twin goals--to find the body, and to find durable love. The resolution of this gripping novel astonishes and leaves a long afterglow.” (Amity Gaige, author of Schroder)^Within a chapter, DS Manon Bradshaw announces herself as a detective to follow through books and books to come. A treat in store for those who love their crime fiction rich in psychology, beautifully written and laced with dark humour. Dive in. (Lucie Whitehouse, author of Before We Met and The Bed I Made)  

About the Author

 http://www.susiesteiner.co.uk/

 Susie grew up in north London, studied English at university and trained as a journalist. She worked in newspapers for 20 years, 11 of them on staff at The Guardian. Her first novel, Homecoming, was published by Faber & Faber to critical acclaim in 2013. Her second, Missing, Presumed was a Sunday Times bestseller which introduced detective Manon Bradshaw. It was a Richard & Judy book club pick and has sold 200,000 copies to date in the UK. Missing, Presumed was selected as one of the Guardian’s, Wall Street Journal’s and NPR's standout books of 2016. It was longlisted for the Theakston's Crime Novel of the Year. Persons Unknown, the sequel to Missing, Presumed, is her third novel. She has written extensively about losing her eyesight to Retinitis Pigmentosa (click the 'journalism' tab for these articles). She lives in London with her husband and two children and is currently working on a third Manon Bradshaw mystery.


My Review

  Missing, Presumed is the first book in the DS Manon series by Susie Steiner. This is the first book of Steiner's that I have read. I heard a lot about this book last year and was thrilled to pick up a Kindle version for $1.99 on Amazon during a sale.

I am a fan of British mysteries and of police procedurals and really enjoyed Missing, Presumed. DS Manon Bradshaw is a single 39 year old woman whose personal life we follow as well as her professional life. The setting is mid-December in Cambridgeshire. A graduate student, who happens to be the daughter of the Royal Family's doctor, is missing and Manon's team is on the case. Missing, Presumed had quite a few twists and I found the story to be enthralling.

I enjoyed Missing, Presumed and am planning on reading Persons Unknown the second book in the series next. Well written and thoroughly enjoyable, I highly recommend Missing, Presumed.


Sunday, July 2, 2017

Bible Review: NIV Kids' Visual Study Bible, Full Color Interior: Explore the Story of the Bible---People, Places, and History by Zondervan









  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 230189 KB
  • Print Length: 1952 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: Zonderkidz; Box Lea edition (June 6 2017)
  • Sold by: Zondervan CA (CA SOR)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B071DL26PD




Book Description


The NIV Kids’ Visual Study Bible, for ages 8–12, brings the Bible to life in four-color illustrated splendor. This study Bible includes a spectacular full-color interior featuring over 700 illustrations, photos, infographics, and maps on every page that visually represent key Bible information. Each page also features important facts located near the relevant verse. Intriguing facts; colorful, engaging maps; photographs; and illustrations make this a Bible they’ll want to explore.

Features:

  • Over 700 four-color photographs, illustrations, infographics, and maps throughout

  • Full-color design

  • Book introductions, including important facts and an image to orient the reader

  • One-column format with side bar study notes for ease of reading

  • Presentation page

  • The complete text of the New International Version (NIV) translation of the Bible


My Review

NIV Kids' Visual Study Bible, Full Color Interior: Explore the Story of the Bible---People, Places, and History is the newest children's study bible by Zondervan. It is a fabulous edition.

If you are looking for a bible that your children will become completely engrossed in then the NIV Kids' Visual Study Bible, Full Color Interior: Explore the Story of the Bible---People, Places, and History is definitely the bible that you should choose. It is filled with colorful photos, drawings and maps that your child will find fascinating. This is a great bible to introduce or to help stimulate biblical learning in your children.

If you check out the Amazon page:  https://www.amazon.com/Visual-Study-Bible-Color-Interior-ebook/dp/B071DL26PD/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1499019051&sr=1-2&keywords=niv+kids+study+bible, you can see photos of the actual pages of the Bible. You can also learn more about it here:  http://www.zondervan.com/niv-kids-visual-study-bible-hardcover-full-color-interior.

I highly recommend this bible for your children. It would also be a great Bible for ESL learners. I wish they had the NIV Kids' Visual Study Bible, Full Color Interior: Explore the Story of the Bible---People, Places, and History when my children were young.