Good Books and the Random Movie

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28 July 2012

Triple Cross

Triple Cross by Mark T. Sullivan is a thriller that combines a beautiful mountain setting, some of the wealthiest people on Earth, a terrorist group and the economy and will keep readers on the edge of their seats with every page.

Mickey Hennessy, a former US Special Agent, is now the head of security for the Jefferson Club - the most exclusive club on the planet. Members pay millions of dollars for a lifetime membership and get the luxury and security that goes with the price tag. The Jefferson Club land in Montana offers Olympic quality skiing and Michelin quality dining along with the company of others of the upper echelon.

Hennessy has his work cut out for him on a normal day due to the people who are club members, but this New Years Eve gathering has more of the world's elite than any other event so far at the Jefferson Club. Luckily, the Club has the best security technology money can buy - including a laser fence at the edges of the property that can distinguish between moose, horse and human trespassers.

In spite of the security measures, just before midnight a military force dressed in snow camouflage and wearing masks bursts into the lodge and takes everyone hostage. Since Hennessy was outside during the breach, he sees what is going on before they spot him. If he can get to the road and get help the people inside might have a chance - including Hennessy's fourteen-year-old triples Hailey, Connor, and Bridger.

Sullivan is a master of the thriller and Triple Cross is no exception. Weaving a complex plot with military action, heroic characters, and more, Sullivan has written a great read.

Sullivan, Mark T. (2009). Triple Cross. New York: St. Martin's Paperbacks.

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25 July 2012

A Perfect Storm (Edge of Honor #4)

A Perfect Storm by Lori Foster is the fourth book in her Edge of Honor series about a group of mercenaries who life goal is to stop human trafficking.

Dare McIntire, Trace Rivers and Jackson Savor work together to try and stop the flow of human kidnap victims from their part of the country. Each of them has a reason be so focused on the topic. And Arizona Storm, who was rescued by Savor, wants to help but knows the guys would not let her. So she doesn't tell them.

Arizona repeatedly puts herself in danger to stop the bad guys - but is she a match for the ring of kidnappers she is now baiting? She may need help on this one and she knows one guy who might help her without treating her like a kid.

Spencer Lark is a bounty hunter. He met Arizona when he was tracking a human trafficker who skipped bail. They had a bit of a clash as they could not both get the bad guy - but although Spencer hates that Arizona puts herself in danger, he would do anything to protect her - including letting her be the bait.

Foster's Edge of Honor series is great romantic suspense with an eye opening amount of information on the real human trafficking that is taking place in the United States. At times the information can be overwhelming and detract from the story - but only momentarily because her characters are compelling and likable and her plots are steamy.

Foster, Lori. (2012). A Perfect Storm. New York: HQN.

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23 July 2012

It's Our Prom

It's Our Prom (So Deal With It) is the latest queer YA novel by Julie Anne Peters. It is about the relationships between three people who have been best friends for years - Azure, Luke, and Radhika. Told from alternating points of view betwenn Azure and Luke, It's Our Prom is the story of two people who are both in love with their best friend (Radhika) and have dreams of taking her to the new, alternative, prom.

When the school principal asks Azure to be on the prom committee, based on a letter written the previous year about how proms are not inclusive, Azure begs Luke and Radhika to join her in the planning. There are differences of opinion about what the prom should be - from the traditional model that tends to exclude both by economic factors and a heteronormative expectations - to a prom that is almost free to attend and has a drag show and no king and queen.

As the committee works out the details, and the budget, readers learn about the lives of Azure and Luke. Radhika is more of a mystery as there is obviously something going on with her, but she is not telling either of them.

Peters is known for her young adult novels that help young queer readers see themselves in the stories. This book is of the caliber you would expect from her. However, I found it odd that there were two times when the characters mention company that is anti-gay. Once when pizza was ordered from Domino's - whose owner is vehimitly against the GLBT community- and once the characters were watching Fox News. Why, out of all of the possible companies, would you promote two anti-gay comanies unless it was to point out their policies? It seems strange.

Peters, Julie Anne. (2012). It's Our Prom. New York: Little, Brown and Co.

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20 July 2012


Glimmer by Phoebe Kitanidis is the story of two people who wake up together with no memory of how they got there, where they are, or who they might be.

Elyse (though she does not know that is her name) finds herself in bed with a stranger - a boy who looks about 17. Though he is very cute, she has no idea who he it. But when she thinks about it, she does not know who she is either.

When Marshall wakes up, he does not recognize the girl in his bed or even the room they are in. Though the girl says it is him in the pictures on the dresser, he has no recollection of any of it.

After a few starts, they decide they should stick together until they find out what is going on. But how do you integrate yourself into a town where everyone thinks they know you and you don't even recognize yourself in the mirror?

As Elyse and Marshall piece together what they can about the town on Summer Falls, Colorado, it seems they are not the only ones with memory problems. Everyone seems to get "heat naps" that come upon them, drop them to the ground for a few minutes, and when they wake up they don't remember the last few minutes.

Kitanidis has created a Stepford-like town that will have readers craving answers. Elyse and Marshall are characters that develop for the reader as they figure out who they are themselves. It is a fun way to approach a novel. Great summer read.

Kitanidis, Phoebe. (2012). Glimmer. New York: Balzer and Bray.

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19 July 2012

Bloodline (Sigma Force #8)

Bloodline by James Rollins is the eighth book in his Sigma Force series that began with Sandstorm. Sigma Force is a group with in DARPA made up of elite soldiers with advanced science or technology degrees - the idea being that a small team can go into any situation with knowledge than any other. One of Sigma's main goals is to stop a shadow organization that seems to be behind most major power grabs around the world, known only as the Guild.

The latest mission for Grey Pierce and his team involves the daughter of the President of the United States. Amanda and her husband were sent a letter warning them that their unborn child was in danger. They reacted by traveling halfway around the world on false papers and renting a yacht in the Seychelles. Unfortunately, they are found by Somali pirates.

Sigma must track Amanda into Somalia - a country almost entirely run by bands of pirates - and find her in the jungle. For this special mission, they need to recruit two new team members. Retired Captain Tucker Wayne and his war dog, Kane, are the perfect team to track anything with a scent.

Rollins is a master of the genre that Dan Brown got famous for with the DaVinci Code - but James Rollins is the best in the genre. His books will keep readers on their toes, staying up late due to adrenalin and a need to know what happens next!

Rollins, James. (2012). Bloodline. New York: William Morrow.

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10 July 2012

Chasing the Night (Catherine Ling #1)

Chasing the Night by Iris Johansen is the eleventh book in her Eve Duncan series and the first book introducing Catherine Ling.

Eve Duncan is a sculptor who recreates faces from skulls. Catherine Ling has bribed her CIA boss into talking Eve into helping her find her son. Though Catherine is looking for an age progression which is not Eve's specialty, Catherine knows that Eve will understand her need to keep looking.

Plus, Catherine knows who has her son. Ten years ago Catherine was part of a small CIA team tasked with removing a Russian mafia don. In retaliation, Rakovac kidnapped Catherine's two-year-old son. He has been taunting her with treats since. The CIA has a relationship with Rakovac, as the lesser evil, and will not move against him. Plus he has promised to kill Luke if he even thinks Catherine is coming after him.

Now, if she can arm herself with Luke's current likeness, provided by Eve Duncan, Catherine is going after her son. And after years of being in the way, the CIA might be willing to help because Rakovac has something planned that will make 9/11 seem tame.

Johansen, Iris. (2010). Chasing the Night. New York: St. Martin's Press.

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04 July 2012

The Girl in the Clockwork Collar (Steampunk Chronicles #2)

The Girl in the Clockwork Collar by Kady Cross is the second book in her Steampunk Chronicles.

The characters fans loved in the first book - Findley, Emily, Sam and Griffin - are on their way to America to find out what happened to their friend Jasper Renn.

Jasper was arrested in London and transported to New York. But when Griffin asks after him at the jail, it appears that the men who collected him were not the law. They work for a criminal, Reno Dalton, who is holding Renn's ex-girlfriend hostage.

Years ago Renn stole something for Dalton and instead of turning over a potentially dangerous machine to a dangerous criminal, Renn took it apart and hid the pieces around New York City. If Renn does not retrieve them, Mei Xing will be killed by the clockwork necklace locked around her throat.

Cross has written a story that takes readers through the seedy streets of 1897 New York. Fans of steampunk will love this series.

Cross, Kady. (2012). The Girl in the Clockwork Collar. New York: Harlequin Teen.

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