Booky Thoughts and Me

Book reviews and pondering thoughts of a down to earth person


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Waiting On Wednesday: Calculated in Death by J.D. Robb

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at  Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Calculated in Death by J.D. Robb

Published: February 26, 2013

Publisher: Putnam Adult

Summary (courtesy of Goodreads):

On Manhattan’s Upper East Side a woman lies dead at the bottom of the stairs, stripped of all her valuables. Most cops might call it a mugging gone wrong, but Lieutenant Eve Dallas knows better.

A well-off accountant and a beloved wife and mother, Marta Dickenson doesn’t seem the type to be on anyone’s hit list. But when Eve and her partner, Peabody, find blood inside the building, the lieutenant knows Marta’s murder was the work of a killer who’s trained, but not professional or smart enough to remove all the evidence.

But when someone steals the files out of Marta’s office, Eve must immerse herself in her billionaire husband Roarke’s world of big business to figure out who’s cruel and callous enough to hire a hit on an innocent woman. And as the killer’s violent streak begins to escalate, Eve knows she has to draw him out, even if it means using herself as bait. .

Personal Thoughts: I love the In Death series and await for each book anxiously. It says a lot about a series when you pick up a book, finish it and then give a long sigh when you find out the next one in the series is coming out in 6 months to a year. I have read some of the books in the series multiple times just to get my Eve and Roarke fix 🙂 but it is still a long time coming in between each book. Luckily I have other books to enjoy until the next one comes out.


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Book Review: Tagged by Mara Purnhagen

Tagged by Mara Purnhagen

Published: March 1, 2010

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Source: Harlequin (giving away free copies)

Can Kate Morgan stand up for herself—without being labeled a snitch?

On the first day of school Kate Morgan and everyone else in her school are attracted to the side building of their school. It has been ‘tagged’ with a life-size graffiti mural. From that day on, the debates begin whether it’s vandalism or actual art, and the suspense keeps on building on who could be culprit. Is it someone from school? Someone’s friend?  A random person causing trouble?

Kate wants nothing to do with the speculation, mainly because her father is a cop, and she doesn’t want to be labeled a snitch. When the murals start to appear all over the state, her curiosity gets the best of her, especially when Eli, her favorite coworker goes missing, and she starts to investigate.

It doesn’t help that her best friend Lan is busy with her own life, and she can’t ask for her advice. Like why she is starting to see Eli as more than just a classmate and favorite coworker. When the signs begin to point to a culprit, Kate is afraid it might be someone who she is close to and doesn’t know what to do.

Personal Thoughts:  This book was a big downer for me. What I mean by that is that it wasn’t that exciting and there wasn’t much to the storyline.  I’ve had this book on my shelf for the past year and haven’t had a chance to read it because of my really long to read list, but after reading other books by Mara Purnhagen, I decided to bump this one up and read it. The plot line was intriguing don’t get me wrong, however, I think the pacing was off. It seemed as though the plot just dragged on and on.

The cover did not interest me at all. It could have had a lot more potential and grab the reader’s attention. They could have had the gorilla on the front cover, even if it was just a small one. I don’t think this cover really works for this novel.

I feel as though some parts of the story could have been extended (such as Eli and Kate, Lan and Bradley, etc). It seems as though something is missing. There is no wow factor that makes you think about the book or pause and think it over.

Overall it was a quick read but a disappointing one, because I was expecting more.


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Book Review: The Amanda Project: Shattered

The Amanda Project: Shattered  by Amanda Valentino and Laurie Faria Stolarz

Published:December 27, 2011

Publisher: Harper Teen

Everything Amanda said about her past was a lie. Now, to save her, the truth must be revealed.

The search for Amanda continues in Book Three of the Amanda Project. This book is Nia’s version of the story and the search for Amanda. Nia, Callie and Hal were all brought together one fateful night and the search for Amanda began.

They are shocked to know that everything they have ever known or were told about Amanda was a lie and now the truth must be found out. Through Nia’s version, the group follows a new lead that deals with mysterious onyx eyes and snake symbols, an air craft field and the emergence of a new player to join their search quest. Will it be enough to uncover the truth and finally find what happened to Amanda?

Personal Thoughts:

This was book three in a series and I found it to be a bit confusing. I know that I will have to go back and read books one and two to see where the other two versions from Hal and Callie lead. I’ll be honest, the concept seemed interesting when I first picked up the book, but I struggled to finish it.  I think what really got to me as I was struggling to finish this book was the way it was written and the overall story plot. It seemed like there was a lot of repetition and not enough mystery. The characters weren’t fully developed, although I don’t know whether that is intentional or whether they are more detailed in the first two books.

I loved the cover and the design work within the books pages. It added a nice touch to the overall theme of the book. Overall, I found this book to be a disappointment and unfulfilling.