Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Competition by Marcia Clark

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The Competition by Marcia Clark

Author: Marcia Clark
Narrator: January LaVoy
ISBN-13: 9781478927228
ISBN-10: 1478927224
Publisher: Mulholland Books


Make A Place for Marcia Clark on the Best Seller shelf…

Open to a San Fernando Valley, California high school where there’s been yet another school shooting. Special Prosecutor Rachel Knight and LAPD Detective Bailey Keller enter a horrific crime scene, knowing one thing … the heartbroken parents expect answers…and they deserved answers. But with each student interview the picture grows blurrier not clearer. The clues simply didn’t add up to the scene set before them. Survivors describe a Columbine copycat crime… two masked killers interrupted the pep rally and began shooting. Pandemonium erupted, terrified kids scattered, literally running for their lives, as the killers made their way out of the gymnasium, into the hallways, methodically murdering their fellow classmates. The gunfire ended in the library, with two final blasts, as the merciless killers apparently died from self inflicted gunshot wounds. However, when two masks, believed to be those worn by the shooters are discovered in the dumpster this case deviates from its predecessor.
From this point forward hang on to your nightcap, its’ gonna be a long night. Wow, what an incredible reading experience…Clark covered very sensitive and controversial subject matter respectfully, without ever holding back the hard truths that those investigating these crimes must deal with. It’s a chance to look behind the curtain and see the inner workings of these difficult cases.  Especially thought provoking was the dialogue with the forensic experts regarding the personality of a psychopathic killer. There are so many layers within The Competition  it could’ve easily gone awry. However, Clark weaves the various elements together and Clark has woven them together brilliantly. The plot driven style can be tedious and boring, which Clark danced on the edge of in her previous books. However, not this time..the extensive interviews are interesting and insightful, serving not only to move the story forward but to develop the characters as well. Bottom line, this is a good book!

Happy Reading!

In Marcia Clark’s most electrifying thriller yet, Los Angeles DA Rachel Knight investigates a diabolical high school massacre.
A Columbine-style massacre at a high school in the San Fernando Valley has left a community shaken to its core. Two students are identified as the killers. Both are dead, believed to have committed a mutual suicide. But in the aftermath of the shooting, as LA Special Trials prosecutor Rachel Knight and Detective Bailey Keller dig deeper, they realize that the pieces don’t add up. Could it be that the two “killers” were themselves victims? And if so, does that mean that the real killers are still on the loose? When someone starts dropping clues that another horrific crime is in the works, Rachel and Bailey scramble desperately to profile their suspect and prevent another killing–before it’s too late.
Fiction…Nonfiction…sadly the line between the two has been blurred to near nonexistence by crimes that Pre Columbine were “unthinkable.” But not now… we live in a Post Columbine world, where teenagers are plotting, planning and executing mass murders. Turning school campuses into crime scenes, forcing police departments to rewrite procedure manuals and parents to get involved in every aspect of their kids life. Or run the risk of sifting through the clues under the glare of the national media spotlight.

Book #1

Book #2

Book #3

Book #4

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Skin Collector by Jeffery Deaver

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Lincoln Rhyme Returns

Skin Collector

by Jeffery DeaverHardcover (book 11)ISBN-13: 9781455517138
ISBN-10: 1455517135
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publish Date: May 2014
  • Page Count: 448

Hachette Audio
ISBN-10: 1478927143
ISBN-13: 978-1478927143
Read By: Edoardo Ballerini
The foundation for this incredible book was laid some 17 years ago when Jeffery Deaver unleashed his instant thriller classic…The Bone Collector…now, the serial killer that held NYC hostage more than a decade ago has returned and in so doing, has  Rhymes, Sachs and the NYPD trying to outwit a killer with a message and nothing to lose.

In Skin Collector, supercop, Lincoln Rhymes must utilize all the weapons in his impressive forensic brain, while Amanda Sachs puts her boots on the ground, as his eyes and ears in the field. But knowledge alone will not be enough to stop this madman with a tattoo gun loaded with poison. Not as complex as we are used too from Deaver. The story often felt rushed or incomplete. Also the last few chapters are pure enticement for book 12…while I understand the writers’ thinking here, it’s simply a waste of good usable space in THIS book and it will be repeated in the beginning chapters of the next book. Because I love Jeffery Deaver’s writing style and Lincoln Rhymes is one of my favorite characters, I will read the next book and the next, etc. And maybe I’m in the minority here..but I will forget what was written here. I would prefer this practice become a thing of the past and fill this book up with the twists, turns, and U-Turns that give us chills, make us shake our heads and I guarantee when the book is closed for the final time, the first thought in the readers mind will be..”Gosh, I can’t wait for the next book!” Even though I was “mildly” disappointed with Skin Collector, it’s only because Deaver has set the bar so very high with previous titles. This is a good book, if you haven’t read the other 10 books there’s enough information you’ll enjoy the book. But it will wet your appetite for more and there’s plenty to keep you busy til number 12 in the series blazes a trail to your nearest bookstore’s best seller shelf.

Happy Reading!

VISIT: Author Jeffery Deaver on the web, CLICK HERE

The first appearance of Lincoln Rhyme.
      The Bone Collector                                  
The Lincoln Rhyme Series:
The Bone Collector (1997)
The Coffin Dancer (1998)
The Empty Chair (2000)
The Stone Monkey (2002)
The Vanished Man (2003)
The Twelfth Card (2005)
The Cold Moon (2006)
The Broken Window (2008)
The Burning Wire (2010)
XO (2012) — small appearance
The Kill Room (2013)
The Skin Collector (2014)


Thursday, April 3, 2014

White Fire by Preston & Child

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White Fire by Preston &Child

02 Apr
White Fire by Preston & Child

White Fire by Preston & Child
Hachette Audio
978 1 61969 462 0
11 CDs approx. 13 hours
Narrated by Rene Auberjonois
Roaring Forks Colorado doesn’t seem like the kind of place you would find a 150 year old murder mystery. ..and that’s exactly how the powers that be have kept it all these years. Until Agent Pendergast’s protégé,  Corrie Swanson arrives in town, with a laundry list of questions and a lack of self  control that quickly lands her in jail facing ten years for tampering with human remains. What began as a simple project spirals into a battle of life and death that allows the reader a rare glimpse at Agent Pendergast’s soft side.
Preston and Child have delivered a novel that combines three major story lines into a fast paced, action packed read…weaving a lost Sherlock Holmes story, a murder mystery that’s been kept hidden for 150 years, with a present day serial arsonist that tries to hide his gruesome crimes in the ashes. While there are a few situations that stretch reality and seem to require superhero abilities, you’ll be so wrapped up in the action it doesn’t matter.
The hardcover is a page turner for sure, but the audio version will keep you on edge like no book ever could…Returning to narrate is the talented Rene Auberjonois. You may recognize Auberjonois from his reoccurring roles on Boston Legal, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Benson and The Practice, the last two earning him Emmy nominations. White Fire will light a fire in your audio player and keep you listening right up to the very end! This writing team has perfected their “individual” style…setting themselves apart within this crowded genre. Unique situations, a leaf charater that’s as unusual as his choices of work attire and transportation, and the ability to weave past, present and future, define this best selling duo.

Grab a copy of White Fire and settle in for a ride as thrilling as a trip down the slopes!

Happy Reading!


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Gladiator Days (Strong Adult Content)

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 Parental Warning - Strong Adult Content, Violence, Prison Scenes, (including a Murder caught on camera)


Gladiator Days: Anatomy of A Prison Murder, an HBO documentary – where a film crew visited multiple prisons throughout the United States, interviewing inmates, prosecutors and guards – many of the clips displayed at the beginning will be quickly recognized as they have aired on national news outlets. (The “Yard Fights” in California, the prisoner being attacked by a dog while offering no resistance, rioting, etc., etc.)However, the documentary focuses on an inmate on inmate assault and subsequent homicide, captured by the Central Utah Prison security cameras. (Central is located in Draper, Utah)
Troy Kell, at the age of 18, was originally sentenced to life without parole, for a murder that took place in 1986, in his home-state of Nevada. A friend of his, Sandy Shaw, asked Troy to stop a man from harassing her & her family, b/c he wanted her to pose nude. Troy Kell, nor the second boy, William, knew the victim – had never met him and would have had no reason whatsoever to attack the man had it not been for the female codefendant. William, had stolen the gun used in the crime from a neighbor’s home, made it available to Troy the night of the crime & it was subsequently located by Las Vegas PD in his home. The murder of 21 year old Cotton Kelly, in the desert, became known as the “Show & Tell Murder” because the female co-defendant, Sandy Shaw, returned to the seen of the crime multiple times showing the corpse off to her friends. One of the people that had seen this horrific scene reported it to the police.
Kell was transferred to Central Utah Prison as part of a prisoner exchange – and that is where he met Eric Daniels – a white supremacist, with multiple tattoos reflecting his personal ideologies – Daniels was initially sent to prison on a minimal forgery charge. He participated in a riot, was placed in solitary confinement & six months later he actively participated in every aspect of the attack and subsequent homicide.
The security tape that captured the attack is chilling, albeit incomplete – and at first seems to have nothing more to offer than a grotesque view of what humans are capable of doing to each other under certain conditions. However, there’s much more to be discerned from the tape, as well as, the documentary as a whole, if it is viewed with an unbiased, neutral opinion. For example, the extenuating circumstances that allowed three high risk inmates to be left, unsupervised in such close proximity of each other, the hand cuff key, the forged request, allowing an inmate that is on “lock-down” out of their cell, and lastly the amount of time that elapses before any authority figure intervenes – is absolutely reprehensible. (Considering the guards had access to multiple forms of non-lethal weaponry – and yet, not a single voice calls out over the intercom for the inmates to separate, “rack in”, get prone, nothing….Look at the time on the video – the difference between when the first blow was struck and when the victim receives CPR is well over an hour….)
Yes, there are parts of the video that are hard to watch, making it all the more important to not look away! Turning away, shielding ourselves from that which is ugly, unsightly and harsh is what allows this inhumane environment to exist in prison. Placing a non-violent criminal in a supermax facility, sentencing an 18yr old young man to LWOP set all this in motion. What possible good could come from such sentences? When a person is given no chance to do anything positive or constructive…when all hope has been forever erased… what is left? For those in prison…it’s simple – become the meanest, baddest, toughest individual in the house…why? To avoid being abused, defiled and degraded in the worst, most inhumane manner imaginable. And with 90% of inmates eligible for parole at some point in their lifetimes, these hardened, hardcore people will return to our communities and live in our neighborhoods,bringing with them all the hate, anger and bitterness the system instilled in them during their incareration.
I recommend anyone that is interested in “true crime,” human behavior, criminal justice, etc., and all parents should view this documentary, to familiarize themselves with the reality of the prison system – so as to better educate and hopefully deter their children from pursuing a similar path. An excellent tool for alternative schools and programs to utilize – without saying a word, with the simple push of a button the instructor can open the eyes of at risk youth…erasing the glamor and mystique so often associated

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Scooby Doo Wall Decal

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Scooby Doo Wall Decal

We ordered this for my granddaughter — she loves Scooby Doo. The decals were easy to remove from the backing, with equally smooth application. The 18×40 Scooby with the paw prints looks wonderful and makes a fantastic point of interest – SHE LOVES IT! It’s easy to clean, warm soapy water and a quick wipe and it looks brand new. It’s now been on the wall for six months and we haven’t experienced any pull aways, wrinkles, or discoloration. I recommend this product without reservation.

This set is also available  – we plan to get this for her playroom on her birthday.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Cuckoo’s Calling by JK Rowling

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ISBN-13: 9781478980827

  • ISBN-10: 1478980826
  • Publisher: Mulholland Books
  • Audio: Hachette Audio
  • The Cuckoo's Calling
    Robert Galbraith
     read by Robert Glenister

    Before anyone knew this novel was written by one of the world’s most beloved authors, it received praise from critics and readers alike. However the books started flying off the shelves of once the deception was revealed, propelling the book from 5,076 to the top of the chart. Although JK Rowling was disappointed her identity didn’t remain a secret for a little while longer, she was well aware the clock was ticking. So why the pseudonym? She said it was freeing to write without the stress, pressure and hype. She was treated like any other debut crime writer, receiving 12 rejections!

    So what’s it about?
    Private investigator Cormoran Strike wounded war veteran, recently estranged from his longtime girlfriend, living in his office, down to one client and with creditors at the door, he can’t seem to catch a break. That is until John Bristow walks into his office with an extraordinary tale: his sister, supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, fell to her death a few months ago. The police ruled the death yet another sad suicide. But John refuses to believe his sisters’ fall was anything but murder. Strike takes the case, he needs this case, however, he gets more than he bargained for, as he’s plunged headfirst into a world that’s foreign to him in every way…desperate designers, millionaires, rock stars, and gorgeous super models. He’s also quickly introduced to pleasures of the flesh that can easily lead a man into temptation.
    It’s difficult to get to know or care about characters when there’s so many they are literally stepping all over each other. Never allowing the reader to really feel like they have learned anything about them beyond the surface stuff and this is hardly enough to build a relationship on. The story drags on far too long with nothing but page filler dialogue. This 450 page hardcover could easily have been whittled down to half as much, thus delivering a more concise and tightly woven story. I hope with this being the first in a new series that the follow up stories will light a fire within the listener (and/or reader), move much more swiftly, leaving the “blah, blah, blah” on the editing floor.

    audiobookcd Robert Glenister’s narration of “The Cuckoo’s Calling” is definitely an added bonus to this otherwise slow moving, almost stale at times story. The English accents are spot on and even the cursing is absolutely delightful and in no way detracts from the story. (Not just cursing for the sake of cursing, it actually fits the story.) Glenister gives each character a distinct and defining voice allowing the story to come to life through the listeners ear phones. Excellent narration!

    Bottom line:
    This is a “good” book, but not great. I do plan on reading the next book in the series, if for no other reason than to see if the story gets any tighter, so that I can get to know and possibly even like or dislike a character or two. You can’t help but compare this book to the best selling Potter series. Which isn’t fair – because it’s like comparing apples to softballs. Which is probably why JK Rowling adopted the pseudonym in the first place. She knew the comparisons would happen, as illogical as they are, simply because of the popularity of her first series, which went on to sell millions upon millions of copies in every conceivable language, in all four corners of the world. Few writers Ever experience such fame and wide spread recognition. But when trying to do something completely different from that which you have been known and loved for the world over, the popularity and recognition make it nearly impossible. I applaud her for having the gumption to step out as Robert Galbraith and swing for the fence!

    Happy Reading!

    Thursday, November 7, 2013

    Mirco One Touch Razor

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    Opening the box the first thing I noticed was the sleek travel case and modern attractive logo. The case closed with a ‘snap,’ tight and even on all sides. This may sound like “nit-picking,” but cases that fail to close properly is one of my pet peeves.

    Picking the razor up I was shocked by the weight. This is not a flimsy razor. Precision crafted from chrome plated brass you can tell the difference between this instrument and others simply by holding it in your hand. Placing a blade was quick and easy. And a simple twist opens the razor for a fast clean up!

    Because I was used to using plastic refillables or throw aways, the Micro One Touch took some getting used too. Which is why I felt it only fair to give it more time before rendering my opinion. I am certainly glad I did, because a week or two just wasn’t enough time for me to get used to the drastic difference between this razor and all the ones I’ve used since I first began shaving. The instructions are fairly complete and easy to follow. However, there are a few things that came with use and time. Try not to go over the same section without reapplying shaving cream, shave with the grain vs simply up and down and lastly don’t apply pressure, the razor requires no more pressure than that which is achieved by leaning your head sideways and placing the instrument on your cheek. May I also suggest using old-school shaving lather and a brush to apply thus avoiding propellants and added artificial lubricants. 
    The Micro One Touch would make a great Christmas gift!

    If you haven’t tried the One Touch, you should! Billed as “The Modern Version of A Timeless Classic,” this is the last razor you will ever buy. Made of solid brass, chrome plated and precision crafted for the perfect shave. You can order online today for $19.99 and receive the deluxe travel case and 12 replacement blades. Pay separate shipping & handling and receive a Bonus 12 blade pack and you have enough to last all year.

    Pawn Stars' Rick HarrisonAre you a Pawn Stars fan? Well this is Rick’s razor! click here to watch a short video promo
    Click Here to  visits Pawn Stars
    **Note: If you’re having trouble with harsh shaves, you may want to try a different brand of blade. All blades are not created equal, they have different coatings, grindings and metallurgies.

    Wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and a very Merry Christmas!

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