Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Accused by Mark Gimenez


Synopsis :

After years of silence, Texan lawyer Scott Fenney receives a devastating phone call from his ex-wife.  She has been accused of murdering her boyfriend - the man she left Scott for - and is begging Scott to defend her.  If Rebecca is found guilty, she will be sentenced to life imprisonment.  Her future is in his hands.

Scott is used to high-stakes cases, but this one is bigger than anything he has handled before.  As he prepares to take the stand in the most dramatic courtroom appearance of his life, Scott is forced to question everything he believes to get to the truth - to save the life of the ex-wife he still loves.


It's nice to be re-acquinted again with Scott Fenney from The Colour of Law which I read many years ago.   It was the first book by Mark that I've read and since then I have enjoyed his other books such as The Perk and The Abduction.  I have not read The Common Lawyer yet. Can't seems to find it in the stores.

Anyway, I liked Scott Fenney in The Colour of Law and fews year on a couple more books down the road, I still like him here in Accused.  I can't say I like the wife.   She is a tough and smart cookie but not likable.  However, Scott is still very much attracted to her and we can see and feel his mixed emotions as he tries to defend her from the crime that she's been accused of.

He brought the whole family and extended family down to Galveston beach and the whole book was about him interviewing witnesses and others in the golf circuit, finding lots of motives why others would want Trey dead.

I have been a big fan of Mark Gimenez and he didn't disappoint in this book especially in the last chapter where you might be totally charmed by the twist in the epilogue so don't read ahead and spoilt it all for yourself.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Husband by Dean Koontz




Synopsis:

What would you do for love? Would you die? Would you kill?

We have your wife. You can get her back for two million cash. Landscaper Mitchell Rafferty thinks it must be some kind of joke. He was in the middle of planting impatiens in the yard of one of his clients when his cell phone rang. Now he’s standing in a normal suburban neighbourhood on a bright summer day, having a phone conversation out of his darkest nightmare.

Whoever is on the other end of the line is dead serious. He has Mitch’s wife and he’s named the price for her safe return. The caller doesn’t care that Mitch runs a small two-man landscaping operation and has no way of raising such a vast sum. He’s confident that Mitch will find a way.

If he loves his wife enough. . . Mitch does love her enough. He loves her more than life itself. He’s got seventy-two hours to prove it. He has to find the two million by then. But he’ll pay a lot more. He’ll pay anything.



It’s been a while since I read Dean Koontz, this looks interesting’ I said to myself as I take a closer look at the synopsis on the back cover of the book. ‘Ok, give it a try’.

And with that, my future is sealed. I will not read another Dean Koontz again for a very long time. At least not his newer books which is thriller in nature but lack the supernatural or psychotic angle that he was so good at in his previous books. If I’m to recommend Dean Koontz to you, I would recommend his books from the early days.

The only element of Dean Koontz that I can see from this book is the twist on Mitchell’s brother. That was unexpected but everything else seems rather mellow and I just don’t get that ‘umph’ that I used do with Dean Koontz’s previous works. I mean, I used to read his book in one sitting that probably took me almost 24 hours! But that was like 20 years ago so I guess he has changed his style since then. 

If it’s the Dean Koontz of old, he might connect the rather supernatural elements that he hinted here and there, like the nails that Mitch found in the attic and the nails that Holly was working on to set free from the plank. Then, there’s the noise of a trunk being closed that Holly heard just as Mitch got into the trunk of the car to go on that journey that’s he’s not supposed to return from. Somehow, the Dean Koontz of old might find a way to make that work in an abnormally supernaturally thrilling way.

If you still haven’t got it, my overall verdict is ‘very disappointed’...

Thursday, August 23, 2012

If Tomorrow Comes by Sidney Sheldon



Synopsis :

Tracy Whitney was young, beautiful, intelligent and about to marry into wealth and glamour.  She was on top of the world.  Until suddenly, betrayed by her own innocence, she was in prison, framed by a ruthless Mafia gang, abandoned by the man she loved.

Beaten and broken, but kept going by her dazzling ingenuity, Tracy emerged from her savaged oreal determined to revenge herself on those who had destroyed her life and to fight back against a society that denied her success and happiness.  No one wold ever cheat her again.

From New Orleans to London and on to Paris, Madrid and Amsterdam, with intelligence and beauty her only weapons, Tracy played for the highest stakes in a deadly game, matching her wits against the successful and the unsrupulous.  Only one man can challenge her.  he's handsome and persuasive and just as daring. And only one man can stop her. An evil genius who shadows her every move - a man whose only hope of salvation is Tracy's destruction.

I embarked on a journey of re-reading some of my old collections recently, and until today, I only managed to read The Firm and If Tomorrow Comes.  I need to buck up!

If Tomorrow Comes is one of the earlier works of Sidney Sheldon and it is one of my favourite titles.  Tracy Whitney was one of my favourite heroine growing up.  She' s beautiful, daring, clever and has all the ingredients that appeal to girls my generations.  Girls this generations might not appreciate her innocence but should certainly admire her for her 'never say die' attitude. Indeed we can all learn from Tracy in not giving up but I'm not certain if we should learn from her for her choice of career after she left prison.

Anyway, without getting into a debate with myself, I really enjoyed this book again after so many years.  Am waiting for another round of opportunity to dig into this book again.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Like Sweet Potatoe Pie by Jennifer Rogers Spinola



Synopsis :

Witness as Shiloh’s new life in Virginia crumbles around her. The house she inherited from her mother is much more than a place to live—it represents Shiloh’s changed life and what little financial security she has. But her half sister is contesting their mother’s will and the IRS is threatening to take it for back taxes. She’s also discovering God’s ideal when it comes to love and romance. 

When Mr. Right shows up will she recognize God’s hand or let circumstances and prejudices blind her heart to the love of her life?

Like Sweet Potatoe Pie is the second book by Jennifer Rogers Spinola in the Southern Fried Sushi Series.  We first get to know Shiloh in the first book, Southern Fried Sushi.

Nothing much has changed for Shiloh since then but in a way everything has changed for her.  While she is still stuck in the South and still yearns for everything Japan, she is living a very different life now as a believer of Christ.  She is learning of ropes of trusting God in all that she does and have adopted a 'What would Jesus do?' mentality in her approach to life..

However, she is still very much in doubt when it comes to affairs of her heart. Much as she felt the attraction to Adam, she seems to think that he’s rather simple and not someone whom she would look for in Mr Right.  However, she forgot that she is not the Shiloh she once was.

Kyoko came over for a visit and found Shiloh to be very different from who she once was.  Some other unexpected person came over for a visit too and with it, came much temptation for Shiloh that tested her new faith and believe.

I always felt that God will not give us more than what we can bear and in this case, God did not give more trials and temptation to Shiloh unless He knows that she be able to pull through by His grace and by His strength.

I am also much taken by this conversation between Shiloh and Adam :

“You gave up a college scholarship for Rick.” It misted out before I could catch myself.
Adam tossed a small white stone from the garden before answering. “It’s not a big deal. Rick lost his legs, Shiloh. I hardly think putting off college a few years qualifies as major suffering. And he’s. . .well, he’s a great brother. I love him.”

“I know you do. But anytime we give up something for someone else it’s suffering. It’s what Jesus did, in a different way. A choice of the heart,” I said, looking across the garden at Adam in a sudden burst of courage.

It was such a revelation to me. The love one has and the willingness to give up something for someone and not making a big deal out of it.  A choice of the heart – it’s just so wonderful and beautiful.

Like Sweet Potatoe Pie is published by Barbor Publishing. I review this for netGalley.com. 

You will be happy to know that the third book on Shiloh entitled Till Grit Do Us Part will be out in November 2012.  I hope I get to review it too.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

BookFest @ Malaysia 2012



I was reading the papers just now when I noticed the above article.

BookFest in back in Malaysia again.  This time round it's from 18 - 26 August 2102 in KLCC.  The theme this year is 'Like Reading'.  Yes, I like reading, so I should go to BookFest?

Yes and no.  I wasn't able to make it to BookFest in Malaysia last year but I managed to catch BookFest in Singapore end of last year.  Needless to say, it wasn't really what I thought it would be.  You can read about my account on BookFest@Singapore here.

The event will be from 10 am - 10 pm and admission is with purchase of the BookFest catalogue at RM2.50 per entry or RM10 for multiple-entries over the nine days.  Catalogues are available at all Popular and Harries bookstore outlets nationwide and at the Bookfest entrance.  Entrance will be free for students who are 18 years old and below and for senior citizens aged 60 and above.

For more information, go and visit bookfestmalaysia.com.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Saying good bye to part of my collection


I didn’t realise that I have been away from this site for 2+ months.  It has been such busy but incredible 2+ months for me doing something else other than reading.  I have been reading, but in much more smaller doses and I think and feel that the ‘break’ did me good.

But like I said, it’s been more than 2 months and I have been itching to get back here again on a regular basis and to pick up my love for sharing what I have reading again.

Remember my bookshelf tour.  Well, while that shelf is looking all nice and dandy, I have not shared with you the other shelf as what was once a very nicely arranged shelf has been looking like an overcrowded low-cost flat for quite a while, with books on top of one another and spilling over.  One of the solution is to either get a new shelf but I know that even if I do, it won’t be long before it’s spilling over again as I seems to be buying books faster than I read!


 The other solution is to ‘get rid’ of some of the books that I know I am not going to read again.  I was supposed to sell some of them at a fund raising function a month ago but that event was cancelled so when the opportunity of a ‘car boot sales’ came up in a neighbourhood mall, I was quite quick to book my slot.


That was yesterday and I brought about 60 novels to that sales.   The event was at the basement car park of the mall and it ran for 6 hours.  I am happy to say that I managed to sell more than 20 of my collections of novels, children’s books, some old magazines and even some old westerns that are no longer in publication!


While part of me is happy for the successful sales, part of me was rather sad to say good bye to some of my collections. However, I know very well that I’m not going to read these titles again and so instead of them sitting unread and abandoned on my shelf, I am happy that they found new homes to go to.

There’s this nice lady who told me that her friends introduced me to Nora Roberts and she was so excited to find Nora in my collection that she bought Birthright and The Circle Trilogy. I did tell her that I have only book 2 and 3 in this trilogy and was secretly hoping that the information would deter her from purchasing but it didn’t work!  I have 2 more Nora Roberts that I haven’t read – Blue Dahlia and Black Rose so I shall be consoling myself in these instead!

I also said good bye to Tersias all because I sold GP Taylor as the author and that young man was so excited because he has Shadowmancer.  I am excited too as I am not a fan of fantasy book and he is, so I really hope he can appreciate Tersias much, much more than me. I did tell him honestly that I didn't appreciate this book as I don't appreciate fantasy.

The Eyes of Jade also found a new owner – a man whom I overheard telling his friend that he has expensive taste when the friend was making comments about the book! Hey, I really hope you enjoy it and appreciate it as me no fan of Asian authors so I didn’t really appreciate it.

One lady bought 4 chick lites which includes The Guy Not Taken, Four Blondes and Glamour and another lady was taken by my No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency collection.  Hey, lady, I forgot to tell you that I also have the 6th book – In the Company of Cheerful Ladies but I haven’t read it yet. Maybe the next round, ya?

All in all, it was a good day of finding new homes for my collections.  I really hope that the new owners will enjoy and have many wonderful time reading and enjoying them.

In the meantime,  I better go and tidy up my shelf.

And you know what? It's great to be back!