Tag: Books: Suspense

Review: Old City Hall

Posted 24 March, 2013 by Lianne in Books / 0 Comments

Old City Hall (Detective Greene #1)
By: Robert Rotenberg
Format: Paperback; courtesy of the publisher & GoodReads First Reads programme

Kevin Brace, Canada’s most famous radio personality, stands in the doorway of his luxury condominium, hands covered in blood, and announces to his newspaper delivery man: “I killed her.” His wife lies dead in the bathtub, fatally stabbed. It would appear to be an open-and-shut case.

The trouble is, Brace refuses to talk to anyone—including his own lawyer—after muttering those incriminating words. With the discovery that the victim was actually a self-destructive alcoholic, the appearance of strange fingerprints at the crime scene, and a revealing courtroom cross-examination, the seemingly simple case takes on all the complexities of a hotly contested murder trial.

I received a copy of this novel thanks to the GoodReads First Reads program. What really drew me to this novel first and foremost was that it’s set in my city, which for me is pretty rare in the books that I read, let alone a crime/mystery novel. Plus, I was in the mood for a mystery novel for a change of pace so this was perfect. May contain spoilers ahead!

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Review: Alys, Always

Posted 11 March, 2013 by Lianne in Books / 0 Comments

Alys, Always
By: Harriet Lane
Format: Paperback; courtesy of the publisher & GoodReads First Reads programme

On a bitter winter’s night, Frances Thorpe comes upon the aftermath of a car crash and, while comforting the dying driver, Alys Kyte, hears her final words. The wife of a celebrated novelist, Alys moved in rarefied circles, and when Frances agrees to meet the bereaved family, she glimpses a world entirely foreign to her: cultured, wealthy, and privileged. While slowly forging a friendship with Alys’s carelessly charismatic daughter, Frances finds her own life takes a dramatic turn, propelling her from an anonymous existence as an assistant editor for the books section of a newspaper to the dizzying heights of literary society.

I received a copy of this book through GoodReads; the premise sounded fascinating–I always enjoy a good, contemporary novel and a story involving family dynamics and the protagonist entering a totally different section of society. Contains spoilers ahead! (I will note it in my review because it’s just too hard not to avoid it =P)

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Review: Restless

Posted 16 February, 2013 by Lianne in Books / 2 Comments

By: William Boyd

“I am Eva Delectorskaya,” Sally Gilmartin announces, and so on a warm summer afternoon in 1976 her daughter, Ruth, learns that everything she ever knew about her mother was a carefully constructed lie. Sally Gilmartin is a respectable English widow living in picturesque Cotswold village; Eva Delectorskaya was a rigorously trained World War II spy, a woman who carried fake passports and retreated to secret safe houses, a woman taught to lie and deceive, and above all, to never trust anyone.

Three decades later the secrets of Sally’s past still haunt her. Someone is trying to kill her and at last she has decided to trust Ruth with her story. Ruth, meanwhile, is struggling to make sense of her own life as a young single mother with an unfinished graduate degree and escalating dependence on alcohol. She is drawn deeper and deeper into the astonishing events of her mother’s past—the mysterious death of Eva’s beloved brother, her work in New York City manipulating the press in order to shift public sentiment toward American involvement in the war, her dangerous romantic entanglement. Now Sally wants to find the man who recruited her for the secret service, and she needs Ruth’s help.

This book caught my attention ever since I heard that an adaptation was made starring Hayley Atwell and Michelle Dockery. This novel sounded interesting with a lot of elements that I’m interested in in a novel: Russian emigres, espionage, World War Two setting, covert affairs and secret identities. May contain some spoilers ahead!

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Review: Headhunters

Posted 3 June, 2012 by Lianne in Books / 0 Comments

By: Jo Nesbø

Roger Brown is a corporate headhunter, and he’s a master of his profession. But one career simply can’t support his luxurious lifestyle and his wife’s fledgling art gallery. At an art opening one night he meets Clas Greve, who is not only the perfect candidate for a major CEO job, but also, perhaps, the answer to his financial woes: Greve just so happens to mention that he owns a priceless Peter Paul Rubens painting that’s been lost since World War II—and Roger Brown just so happens to dabble in art theft. But when he breaks into Greve’s apartment, he finds more than just the painting. And Clas Greve may turn out to be the worst thing that’s ever happened to Roger Brown.

Jo Nesbø is pretty popular in the Scandinavian thriller genre at the moment and I first found out about this book after seeing a trailer for its 2011 movie adaptation starring Aksel Hennie and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. So I decided to pick this book up for my Kobo; after reading as something as heavy as Brandon Sanderson’s The Way of Kings (review), I was in the mood for something different. Contains some spoilers ahead!

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Review: The Inheritance

Posted 7 March, 2012 by Lianne in Books / 0 Comments

The Inheritance
By: Simon Tolkien

A complex mystery of deception and betrayal that follows the court case of a young man set to hang for the murder of his father When a famed Oxford historian is found dead in his study one night, all evidence points to his son, Stephen. About to be disinherited from the family fortune, Stephen returns to home after a long estrangement—and it happens to be the night his father is shot to death. When his fingerprints are found on the murder weapon, Stephen’s guilt seems undeniable. But there were five other people in the manor house at the time, and as their stories slowly emerge—along with the revelation that the deceased man was involved in a deadly hunt for a priceless relic in Northern France at the end of World War II—the race is on to save Stephen from a death sentence.

Everyone has a motive, and no one is telling the truth.

Unwilling to sit by and watch the biased judge condemn Stephen to death, an ageing police inspector decides to travel from England to France to find out what really happened in that small French village in 1945—and what artifact could be so valuable it would be worth killing for.

To be honest, the first thing that caught my attention with this book was that it was written by the grandson of J.R.R. Tolkien. It’s pretty cool that he also became an author, albeit of the mystery/suspense genre. The premise of the novel also intrigued me so it went on my want-to-read list; it was only recently that I finally got a hold of a copy to read. Contains some spoilers!

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