Completed Book Challenge 2014

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completed book challenge

Another year, done and dusted! Here are the new books that I have made it through this year. I managed some rereads in between, but I cannot count those again. It was most enjoyable. Thanks to all who gave me recommendations that I got to, it was lovely!

1. The Fault In Our Stars – John Green

2. The Perfect Husband (FBI Profiler Series – Quincy #1) – Lisa Gardner

3. Sworn to Silence (Kate Burkholder #1) – Linda Castillo

4. One False Move – Alex Kava

5. Windmills of the Gods – Sidney Sheldon

6. Night Shift – Stephen King

7. The Third Victim (FBI Profiler Series – Quincy #2) – Lisa Gardner

8. The Goldfinch – Donna Tartt

9. Unseen (Georgia #5) – Karin Slaughter

10. Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

11. Pray for Silence (Kate Burkholder #2) – Linda Castillo

12. The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower #1) – Stephen King

13. Horns – Joe Hill

14. The Perks of Being a Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky

15. An Abundance of Katherines – John Green

16. Mailman: A Novel – J Robert Lennon

17. Whitewash – Alex Kava

18. Shutter Island – Dennis Lehane

19. The Rolling Stones: 50 – Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, and Ronnie Wood

20. Fight Club – Chuck Palahniuk

21. Will Grayson, Will Grayson – John Green & David Levithan

22. Drive – James Sallis

23. Looking for Alaska – John Green

24. Are You Afraid of the Dark? – Sidney Sheldon

25. The Silence of the Lambs (Hannibal Lecter #2) – Thomas Harris

26. Under the Knife – Tess Gerritsen

27. A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire #1) – George R.R. Martin

28. Dracula – Bram Stoker

29. Dead Until Dark (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #1) – Charlaine Harris

30. Tell Me Your Dreams – Sidney Sheldon

 


 

That was the original challenge. I finished all of those and then decided to up it to fifty.

31. Living Dead in Dallas (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #2) – Charlaine Harris

32. Paper Towns – John Green

33. Club Dead (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #3) – Charlaine Harris

34. One Scream Away (Sheridan #1) – Kate Brady

35. Dead to the World (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #4) – Charlaine Harris

36. Warm Bodies (Warm Bodies #1) – Isaac Marion

37. Dead as a Doornail (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #5) – Charlaine Harris

38. Heart-Shaped Box – Joe Hill

39. Definitely Dead (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #6) – Charlaine Harris

40. To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee

41. All Together Dead (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #7) – Charlaine Harris

42. Cop Town – Karin Slaughter

43. From Dead to Worse (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #8) – Charlaine Harris

44. The Bad Place – Dean Koontz

45. Dead and Gone (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #9) – Charlaine Harris

46. A Drink Before The War (Kenzie & Gennaro #1) – Dennis Lehane

47. Dead in the Family (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #10) – Charlaine Harris

48. The Villa – Nora Roberts

49. Dead Reckoning (The Southern Vampire Mysteries / Sookie Stackhouse #11) – Charlaine Harris

50. Darkness, Take My Hand (Kenzie & Gennaro #1) – Dennis Lehane

Well, there we have it folks. I know I have some recommendations that were given to me, they are on my list, they will most likely make the new year’s challenge 🙂 Thanks so much to everyone who read, commented and recommended, it is much appreciated!

Review: Whitewash – Alex Kava

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alex kava whitewash cover

Sabrina Galloway is a scientist at EchoEnergy, a company that has revolutionised oil making… they are making it from organic materials, they are breaking through in alternative fuel methods. The company is getting very successful. However, one day she is called up by the big boss, William Sidel’s, secretary. She is to give a tour of the plant because her boss, Dwight Lansik, has not reported in for the day, though she does not know it is because he has been murdered. Sabrina finds this odd, and deals with some blowback from her colleagues for being the chosen one to take up in his stead. Sabrina presents the tour to some potential investors and a powerful American senator, who is lobbying to get the US Military oil contract moved from overseas powers back to American ones. Senator Allen does not do well at the tour. While giving the tour, Sabrina notices that Reactor #5 is on, and knows that it must be a mistake, that they are still years away from having  that section of the company approved and up and running.

Meanwhile, a hitman is on the move after having exterminated Dwight Lansik, who stood in the way of whatever is going down at EchoEnergy. His employer feels that Sabrina Galloway may be a threat, seeing as she has started asking some questions. She has become his next target. Sabrina is a quiet person with no real life and a delusional/sick father who has gone into care. She is still having difficulty dealing with her mother’s passing two years before, and her only friend is her incredibly old neighbour, Miss Sadie. Other forces are at work, and all seem intricately connected to what is going on at EchoEnergy. Senators, secret agencies and apparent terrorists are all vying for differing outcomes of the company, and all will do varying degrees of terrifying things to realise their goals. Sidel and Senator Allen seem to have a bond, though they are not friends. They have a mutual interest in making sure the military contract comes through, though both for different reasons. Jason Brill is Senator Allen’s chief of staff, and is playing all the games to make sure his boss makes it big, though he is not in the loop with as much as he though he was, which becomes evident. Natalie Richards, on the other hand, seems to be working strongly against someone, and has some powerful players in her corner.

Sabrina is a little shaky after visiting her dad, Arthur, when a car runs her off the road. She feels that she was lucky that the injuries weren’t more serious. Picking up a rental vehicle, she starts sniffing around more and more, looking for answers on Lansik, who has just disappeared and magically “quit” his job. Leon, the hitman, has his own set of issues when the news makes it back to him that he was unsuccessful in taking out Sabrina Galloway, who is rapidly becoming a thorn in his side. Sabrina decides to have a look see outside the building as to what is going on, and finds out that there is waste being pumped into the river that is definitely not organic, and grabs the hunk of junk blocking the flow of the pipes to have it tested and find out more. Going to meet with the building maintenance man, she is running late, and he is supposed to show her that Reactor #5 is definitely not in working order. Arriving late, she witnesses Leon throw her coworker, Anna, into the huge tank below, and manages to make it out in time.

Sabrina runs, with Miss Sadie’s help, and looks for her brother, Eric, who her father insists is living in Florida. Meeting up with Eric, whom she has not seen since her mother’s death, Sabrina needs to set aside her differences and pleads for his help. Eric bands together a group and they start looking into EchoEnergy as well as who has an interest in what is going on. However, he is keeping many secrets of his own, and seems to be intent on keeping them. Who has employed Leon to kill Sabrina and why? Why was Dwight Lansik killed? How are all the different groups connected? Who is protecting whose interests? Will Eric and Sabrina ever have a normal relationship with each other again? Is their father really as delusional as they think? Who are all the people that Eric has brought together to help Sabrina?

GRADE 6This was definitely an improvement over her last novel that I read, One False Move. There was not such an insane amount of useless and forced cussing. Now, moving along. I felt that Kava tried to shroud everything in just a tad too much mystery, and continued this for way too long, so instead of it being something that makes you salivate a little, it becomes something you just roll your eyes over. Like we all love mystery, and I love it when you can keep a reader guessing right up until the end, but this was not so much like this. It just didn’t work here, and was not implemented well. There was not a single character that I could identify with, either, which is a real frustration when trying to bring the book up to something that means just a little more. It was a very simple read, even though it defied logic at times. Again, just your average book, her game has not been upped since the last one. She is not bad, just very standard, the type of filler book that you will read between other things when you are attempting to decide what you are going to invest time on.

Review: One False Move – Alex Kava

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alex kava one false move cover

Defence attorney Max Kramer makes the case of his life when he gets Jared Barnett off of death row on a technicality. Jared has no money, but Max isn’t concerned. He is popular and in demand, and that will make up triple in tenfold. Grace Wenninghoff, who prosecuted Jared for the brutal rape and murder of a young girl, whose jaw was shot off to erase identity, is unhappy, and is a little perturbed by the fact that she keeps seeing Jared. Homicide detective Tommy Pakula is prepared to put cops on Grace to watch out for her and her little girl, Emily, while Grace’s husband Vince is away on business, though she refuses.

Author Andrew Kane has isolated himself to a cabin in Platte State Park, wishing to overcome his writer’s block and get back on the train. Pakula, who is friends with Andrew, visits his friend, trying to get him out of his deep and dark place. However, Jared has new ideas. He is fresh out of prison and has a plan – he is ready to knock over a bank in Nebraska, and seems to have it all work out. He gets his sister Melanie Starks and his niece, seventeen year old Charlie involved. Though uncomfortable, Melanie feels that she owes her brother that much seeing as she did not stand by him during the trial that garnered him a life sentence and for some dark and unspoken of deed from their childhood.

The bank heist is soon underway and goes sour almost immediately. Melanie is unhappy with the fact that Jared has brought guns along and flips out when within seconds of being in the bank shots are fired, and her brother and son come tearing out. She is also not impressed that it appears that he is working with someone, though he is not sharing with who. Very soon they have cops on their tail and are desperate to get away, and are on the run now. Melanie crashes the car near Platte State Park and the trio manages to crawl from the wreckage and escape the police when a storm breaks out. Andrew Kane seems to be too close to the action, and may very well get his wish, the one that he should not have been looking for. Too much action is never a good thing. Grace is sure that Jared is behind this when one of the bank robbery victims has her jaw shot off, breaking half the teeth in her mouth.

Time is running out and for all intents and purposes it seems that Jared is devolving when a murder trail is left behind while he is on the run, dragging his sister, son and Andrew Kane along with them. Will the cops catch up in time? Will Jared be sent back to prison? Will Melanie grow a spine and protect her son from her lunatic brother? Who is Jared working with that is so underhanded and shrouded in secrecy? Will Andrew survive his kidnapping ordeal?

GRADE 5This book was alright, the story okay and the progression was fine. In other words, it was just your average book. There were so many things and events that the author alluded to yet never went back to and tied up, making it feel incomplete when it was all over. Not only that, there was so much swearing. Now, I have no issue with swearing in a book. More often than not the books I read have tons of cussing in them. However, each and every dirty word in this book felt forced, and that irritated the hell out of me. It makes everything feel disjointed and useless, and I really didn’t like that. It didn’t feel natural, and stunted the flow a little bit for me. There was nothing super new or exciting about the book. It was an easy read, and quick, too. The story left me wanting a little bit more, and the characters were not nearly as well rounded as I was hoping they would be and I could really not feel for any of them really, which is a pity because I feel it is awfull important to feel for the characters and identify with them to make them real and important. Also it felt a little rushed for me. Not an awful read, but I expected so much more seeing as I had a friend