Christy’s Reviews

Heartbreak Hotel by Jonathan Kellerman

  Thalia Mars, just short of her one hundredth birthday, gets in touch with child psychologist Alex Delaware. Normally, he would not consider treating someone outside of his usual patients, but her charm and wit change his mind. Alex meets her in her suite at the Aventura, a luxury hotel.  He hopes for answers as […]

Review of Swiss Vendetta by Tracee de Hahn

      Unable to stay in Financial Crimes,  Inspector Agnes Lüthi  transfers to Violent Crimes to escape memories of her late husband.  She thinks her new assignment will start uneventfully, she could not be more wrong. With a severe blizzard about to strike Lausanne,  Lüthi receives orders to investigate the stabbing death of a young woman […]

Review of Getting off on Frank Sinatra

    “Getting off on Frank Sinatra”, the title to a new mystery series, caught my eye the moment I saw the title on-line. Copper Black, is the arts and entertainment editor, for the newspaper The Las Vegas Light.  Her latest assignment is to interview Marilyn Weaver the founder of the élite Anna Roberts Park […]

Review of A Study In Scarlet Women

  A Study in Scarlet Women (The First in the Lady Sherlock Series) is an interesting take on Arthur Conan Doyle’s character.  I initially felt uncertain and a bit awkward about Charlotte Holmes’, the Lady Sherlock, because of what she does to gain her freedom and independence.  And yet the affair she has is what […]

Review of The Seance Society

The Seance Society is set in 1956, Lee Pickett is a reluctant private investigator, following in his late father’s footsteps.   Aiding him in his investigations is a scholarly Mr. O’Nelligan, who has a keen ability to solve mysteries.  Their latest case is brought to them by George Agnelli, a policeman nearing retirement. He feels the death […]

Review of Smoke & Mirrors

Smoke and Mirrors, is just as enjoyable to read as the Zig Zag Girl , its up follows in the Mystery men series.  Christmas has come to Brighton and locals are eager to see the new production of Alladin starring Max Mephisto but Di Edgar Stephen can’t feel the holiday spirit.  He has the murder of two children, brother and […]

A Review of In This Grave Hour: A Maisie Dobbs Novel

    In This Grave Hour, opens on Sunday, September 3, 1939. Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain in a radio broadcast announces to the nation that Britain is at war with Germany. Shortly afterwards, psychologist and investigator Maisie Dobbs, find her house broken into by secret agent Dr. Francesca Thomas.  She comes on urgent business to […]

Review of The Blood Strand

        In The Blood Strand: A Faroes Novel, British police detective Jan Reyna, returns to his native home on one of the Faroes  islands after police find his estranged father unconscious with a shut gun and someone else’s blood staining his clothes. The novel presents in two narratives one from Jan point of view and his […]

Review of Death in Profile

      Death in Profile by Guy Fraser-Sampson, author of the ‘Mapp and Lucia’ novels, introduces readers to his Hampstead Murder series.  A serial killer has claimed the lives of four women and  Detective Chief Inspector Tom Allen and his team remain stuck after more than a year of investigation.   When a fifth woman is found dead, […]

Review of Missing People

      Missing People is  the heartbreaking  story of the Messenger family unable to carry on after eldest child Etta vanishes.  In the years following Etta’s disappearance, her family and her boyfriend’s wounds are still fresh and angry. Meg, the mother, is a house cleaner who has conversations with Etta as she works.  Charlie, the […]

Review of The Gatekeeper

        The Gatekeeper by Kathryn Smith shares the life story of Marguerite (Missy) LeHand  personal secretary to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. She gained family access to her personal papers, work correspondents, newspaper interviews done during her life time and much more. Smith shares this story less like a biography and more like a […]

Apostle of Union

  Apostle of Union by Matthew Mason,  is a biography about  Edward Everett.  By sharing his life story, Mason reveals a sometimes overlooked part of Pre-Civil War history: the devotion many had preserving the Union and the Constitution. Everett is an example of one such champion to both causes. During his life, Everett was as […]

Outfoxed: Andy Carpenter Mystery

  Andy Carpenter, David Rosenfelt, wise cracking and case adverse lawyer, is back again in Outfoxed. (The fourteenth book in the series.)  Andy’s loves are wife Laurie, a former cop still connected to her old colleagues, adopted son Ricky, and dogs especially Tara. When he is able to elude his law practice, Andy is usually […]

Eye In The Sky (DVD)

Eye In the Sky, directed by Gavin Hood (Rendition) and script by Guy Hibbert,  is a taut thriller that reveals not even drone warfare is clear-cut. The film’s focus is on a house in a Kenyan village where a small group of terrorists are meeting.  UK, US and Kenyan political and military personnel watch them […]

Review of The Man Who Knew Infinity (DVD)

  The Man Who Knew Infinity, released on DVD this year, is a film based on the biography of self-taught mathematical genius Srinivasa Ramanujan by Robert Kanigel. Srinivasa grew up in poverty and became enthralled with numbers, formulae, and mathematical theory.  He taught himself most of what he needed to know about each and some […]

Review of Origins

      Authors Simon Cantan and Dave Higgins short story Origins, introduces readers to a new series called Dragons and Magic. In the story’s fantasy world people have attributes (think a role-playing computer game with points to add to a basic character to improve it) including strength, wisdom, constitution, dexterity etc. Parents can improve […]

Review of Breaking The Chains of Gravity

  Usually when we hear the story of NASA it starts with the Soviet Union launching Sputnick.  It is not often anyone finds out more about  NASA’s early days.  This changed for me when I read Amy Shira Teitel’s book Breaking The Chains of Gravity: The Story of Spaceflight Before NASA. Originally known as NACA […]

Review of Circle of Poison

   Circle of Poison tells the story of U.S. banned pesticides being sold to other countries through  interviews with people in communities around the world. In each of them there are unusually high levels of disease and babies being born with defects. In India a family feels the terrible effects of the pesticide endosulfan when […]

Better Dead

Better Dead by Max Allen Collins  is the 20th book in his Nathan Heller series.  I have not read this series before now. I chose this specific book for its interesting premise. At the start of the novel, Senator Joseph McCarthy hires Heller to investigate the Rosenberg case. He wants the detective to prove there […]

Review of The Zig Zag Girl

  It is 1950 Briton England, and Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens latest case is gruesome.  A woman is found cut into three pieces and packed into luggage mimicking a magic trick made famous by his friend Max Mephisto, a renown magician and a former member of the Magic Men. The Magic Men were a group of […]

The Hour Glass Factory

  It is London 1912, Francesca “Frankie George”, a reporter for the London Evening Gazette wants off a woman’s column.  She yearns to have her own hard news stories published like male reporters do.  Her latest plea to her boss Mr. Stark falls on deaf ears.  Her next assignment is to do a profile of […]

Dr. Ruth Galloway Series

  I have enjoyed Elly Griffith’s Dr. Ruth Galloway series going on six years now.  Ruth is first introduced in The Crossing Places (2010), when her archeological ability becomes necessary to Norwich, DCI Harry Nelson. He asks her to decide if a child’s bones found near a prehistoric henge site belong to a girl who […]

My Review of Shiny Young Adult

Shiny Young Adult is the prequel story to the book Shiny New Swindle. Shiny Young Adult offers a peek into events leading  to main character, Chris joining elite hackers: Max, Heidi and Erika in the heist featured in Shiny New Swindle. (Last year I read and reviewed the book. Please click here to read it. […]

Review of A Dangerous Place

    Ever since Jacqueline Winspear published her first Massie Dobbs book in 2003, I have made a point to read each new book in the series. I find it refreshing that she takes the time to tell each of her character’s full story. She tells the reader their past, present and the offers a […]

The Brokenwood Mystery Series

  I recently found a new mystery series I was not familiar with at the library.  It is called Brokenwood and is set in New Zealand.  The star is Neill Rea as Detective Sargent Inspector Mike Shepard who arrives from an unnamed city to Brokenwood to solve a flagged case. However, The local officers on […]

Review of Secret State

Recently I watched an intriguing TV movie from 2012 titled Secret State.  It starred Gabriel Byrne (In Treatment and Vikings) as Tony Dawkins and Charles Dance as John Hodder (Imitation Game.) Once I finished watching this political thriller, I learned it was based on Chris Mullin’s 1982 book: A Very British Coup.    Six years […]

Review of Back Channel

    Recently I was roaming the isles of my local library when I came upon Stephen L Carter’s Back Channel.   I knew the author’s name from another book he wrote titled The Impeachment of Abraham Lincoln. In it Carter imagines Lincoln surviving an assassination attempt only to have Congress charge him with overreaching his constitutional […]

A Review of Two Bronze Pennies

      Chris Nickson’s Two Bronze Pennies opens on Christmas Eve 1890 in Leeds, England.  Detective Inspector Tom Harper is eager to spend Christmas with his wife Annabelle and to have a break from work.  His latter plans are dashed when a young Jewish man living in a nearby district, riddled in poverty, is murdered.  His body […]

Gods of Gold: A Det. Insp. Hardy Mystery

  Chris Nickson author of the Richard Nottingham series, beings a new series also set Leeds, with Gods of Gold. It features Detective Inspector Tom Hardy who  is about to marry Annabelle, a hard-working business woman who rose up from humble beginnings as a maid. While he wishes for mundane police work till after he weds […]

Jeff Shaara’s The Fateful Lightning

      I have read all of Jeff Shaara’s historical fiction books.  I was introduced to  Jeff’s work through his late father Michael Shaara’s Killer Angels. While I was reading the afterward of the book, I learned Jeff was going to continue where is father left off.  I was excited at the news.  And when Gods […]

Time’s Up: A Maise McGrane Mystery

    Time’s up is written by Janey Mack who wanted to be a cop but instead followed another dream to become an author. In her the book, she introduces Maise McGrane, who like her, has always wanted to be a cop – it’s in her blood. Her father and more than half her brothers are […]

Review of The Death’s Head Chess Club

    The Death’s Head Chess Club is a historical fiction novel by John Donoghue .  The novel’s focus is on the unlikely bond between a Nazi officer and a Jewish chess player. During WWII SS Obersturmfuhrer Paul Meissner had fought on the Russian front. During one battle he is severally wounded and loses his foot.  He […]

My Thoughts on Mr. Robot

    Mr. Robot is a USA network show focusing on a young man named Elliot Alderson who has antisocial disorder and who suffers from severe depression. By day he works at Allsafe, a computer network security company, and at night in his apartment he hacks his way into people’s’ lives, learning all he can […]

The Pawn: A Patrick Bower Files Book

    Recently I was in my local library looking for another book to read. I came upon Steven James’ The Pawn, the first book in the Patrick Bowers Files series. Bower is a FBI agent whose specialty is environmental criminology. It is the analysis of time and place locations of crimes to find out […]

Commentary on Go Set a Watchman

      I admit it last year when I heard about Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman I was very curious as to what it would be about. Would it be a prequel to the famous book or a sequel looking forward after the events of To Kill a Mockingbird? Since no mediate information was […]

Review of The Last Train by Richard Alan

  Richard Alan’s Last Train is a short novella about loving couple Jake and Bernadette who are celebrating their silver wedding anniversary when the train they are on is blown up.  Jakes dies and goes to heaven where color and emotions are intertwined but as lovely as heaven is to him, being there without Bernadette is simply […]

Review of ABC Family drama: Stitchers

    The new ABC Family drama Stitchers aired for the first time on Tuesday, June 2nd.  It is about a highly intelligent Cal tech student named Kirsten Clark (portrayed by Emma Ishta) who has temporal dysplasia (not a real condition) that prevents her from having a sense of time.  The condition also apparently leaves her […]

Arthur & George by Julian Barnes

  I first heard about Arthur and George, a 2015 ITV series through a posting by John Rakestraw on Google Plus. He gave a mini description of the series starring Martin Clunes as Sir Author Conan Doyle. Clicking on the link, Arthur & George Season 1 episode 1  I began to watch. The series focuses […]

E-book Review of Johnny Don’t March

        Timothy Hurley’s e-book, Johnny Don’t March, is a very moving and touching fictional story about Brooklyn native, Nelson O’Brien. Through the main character Hurley  portrays a solder suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD. At the start of the book, Nelson has deep emotion and physical scars  from the destruction of […]

Review of Shiny New Swindle E-book Edition

  Shiny New Swindle features an advanced technological world where all a person needs to connect to the web is a tiny brain implant. As a result hackers are “king or queen”. One of the most successful  groups include Chris, Max, Hailey, and Erika. Each member has perfected a code program that hacks into people’s […]

Review of Peter John’s Dead Medium

      For 75 years, May Elizabeth Trump has liked being on her own. Whenever she has company like from her cheery friend Margaret, she allows them begrudgingly. One day after a visit from her friend, May chokes on a cookie and dies in her home. At first she is dismayed by how her […]

Kelly’s Koffee Shop A Cedar Bay Cozy Mystery

  Dianne Herman is the author of three Cedar Bay Cozy Mysteries set along the central coast of Oregon. Kelly’s Koffe Shop is the first in the series. The book’s central character is Kelly Connor, a fifty-something breakfast, and luncheonette owner of the popular Kelly’s Koffe Shop. One of her waitresses is her goddaughter, Amber […]

TNT’s The Librarians

  Over the years, I have watched a show on TNT and fallen for it only to have it cut short by cancellation. There was Witchblade. Then Southland, Monday Mornings and I could go on and on. I just kept picking shows that were too low rated to keep going. Or there was a controversy […]

My Review of Titanic Deception

      After I had watched the online book trailer for Titanic Deception by John and Toni Rakestraw, I knew I wanted to read it.  It is about Michael Kearney who works as a food server for Chandler and Sons in the financial district of New York City. He is inconspicuous and reliable. His […]

My Review of Great Lakes Skipper

  On my birthday, one of the gifts I received from my parents was Jim Stark’s Great Lakes Skipper. At his rotary club, my Dad had heard the author speak about his new book. He decided to buy a copy of the book with a personal note. Over the course of fifteen years, the author […]

Review of White Heat by M.J. McGrath

White Heat by M.J. McGrath plays out on Arctic islands off of Greenland. Edie Kiglatuk, the book’s main character, is a part-time teacher and a guide for hunters on Ellesmere and other islands. At the start of the book, she guides two men – Felix Wagner and Andy Taylor – on a hunt. The longer […]

My Review of the film Black Tulip

  The Black Tulip is a film set and filmed in Afghanistan. The film was released in 2010 with a broader release in 2012. It is about the Mansouri family who opened a restaurant called “The Poet’s Corner.” The name of the restaurant comes from Mrs. Farishta Mansouri’s father’s book shop. He ran it until […]

My Review of the book The Detective

  The Detective is by James Patrick Hunt. He has written ten books including Maitland, Maitland Under Siege, The Betrayers, and  Police and Thieves. The Detective is the first book I have read written by Hunt.  It is set in 1970s Chicago in the aftermath of one of the worst snowstorms the city has experienced […]

Review of The Set Up Man: A Johnny Addock Novel

    “The Set Up Man” by T.T. Monday was published this year and is about a relief pitcher named Johnny Addock who plays for the Bay Dogs of San Jose, California. He is thirty five years old and nearing the end of his major league baseball career. With lots of time on his hands […]