Friday, March 27, 2015

I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak

Title: I Am The Messenger

Author: Markus Zusak

Published: Alfred A. Knopf, 2006 (first published 2002)

Pages: 357

Summary: Ed Kennedy is an underage cabdriver without much of a future. He's pathetic at playing cards, hopelessly in love with his best friend, Audrey, and utterly devoted to his coffee-drinking dog, the Doorman. His life is one of peaceful routine and incompetence until he inadvertently stops a bank robbery.

That's when the first ace arrives in the mail.

That's when Ed becomes the messenger.
Chosen to care, he makes his way through town helping and hurting (when necessary) until only one question remains: Who's behind Ed's mission?  (Taken from Goodreads)

Thoughts: I have wanted to read this book for the longest time.  I have only heard good things about I Am the Messenger and the synopsis makes it sound really intriguing.  So I randomly decided to pick it up off my shelf one day and give it a go.

Unfortunately, I just couldn't really get into I am the Messenger very much.  It's hard to explain but I just felt like I couldn't connect with any of the characters and they just seemed like people I didn't particularly care about.

I tried to be interested in the story and when I picked it up I felt a little intrigued by what was happening but at the same time I was kind of bored most of the time.  I also felt like the writing would gloss over things sometimes and so I would miss out on some of the details.  It would leave me a little confused for a minute or two.

The ending was just odd.  I don't want to go into it and give away spoilers but it sort of made me a little annoyed at the actions of some of the characters.  It also just left me feeling a little bit empty.

Perhaps I missed the entire point of the book or it could just be that I am the Messenger just wasn't the book for me.  I went into it thinking that it was going to be a thriller but it really isn't, it's more of a contemporary story which I don't always like at the best of times.

Monday, March 23, 2015

A Bone to Pick by Charlaine Harris

Title: A Bone to Pick

Author: Charlaine Harris

Published: Gollancz, 2012

Pages: 199

Series: Book 2, Aurora Teagarden

Summary: MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS Roe Teagarden's been kept pretty busy, what with two weddings - one of a former lover - and a funeral, for Jane Engle, a member of her disbanded true crime club Real Murders, but her personal life seems to be at a standstill . . . until the reading of Jane Engle's will. The elderly lady has named Roe as her heir, and left her a rather substantial estate. It includes her house - which comes complete with a skull hidden in a window-seat. Roe is quite sure Jane was no killer, so she must have left the skull there on purpose for Roe to solve the murder. So now it's up to Roe to identify the victim and figure out which one of Jane's seemingly ordinary neighbours is a murderer - without putting herself in deadly danger.  (Taken from Goodreads)

Thoughts: After really enjoying the first book in this series, I was looking forward to reading the next book in the series.  

The mystery aspect was quite interesting as it wasn't a typical mystery where the police are involved from step one and it's not so much of an investigation.  I felt like this time Roe, just found out information through random chats with people and she didn't really go out of her way to investigate.

I feel like at first I got a little mixed up between this series and another cosy mystery series I've been reading so what I really need to do is pick one of the series and finish reading that before I start reading the other.  Just because there were times where I thought that  something was the case but that it was actually a completely different series.  I do think that I will probably continue this series first because there are fewer books in this one which means I can finish it faster.

I couldn't guess the mystery because I wasn't really presented with enough information for me to really figure it out.

I also missed the Real Murders club because I thought that aspect of the first book made it seem really interesting.  It will be interesting to see if they bring that up in more detail in later books.

I quite enjoyed A Bone to Pick and I am already looking forward to reading the next book in the series because it looks just as interesting.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Strawberry Shortcake Murder by Joanne Fluke

Title: Strawberry Shortcake Murder

Author: Joanne Fluke

Published: Kensington, 2011

Pages: 320

Series: Book 2, Hannah Swensen

Summary: MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS! When the president of Hartland Flour chooses cozy Lake Eden, Minnesota, as the spot for their first annual Dessert Bake-Off, Hannah is thrilled to serve as the head judge. But when a fellow judge, Coach Boyd Watson, is found stone-cold dead, facedown in Hannah's celebrated strawberry shortcake, Lake Eden's sweet ride to fame turns very sour indeed.
Between perfecting her Cheddar Cheese Apple Pie and Chocolate Crunchies, Hannah's snooping into the coach's private life and not coming up short on suspects. And could Watson's harsh criticism during the judging have given one of the contestants a license to kill? The stakes are rising faster than dough, and Hannah will have to be very careful, because somebody is cooking up a recipe for murder. . .with Hannah landing on the "necessary ingredients" list.  (Taken from Goodreads)
Thoughts: After really enjoying the first book in the series I was looking forward to reading Strawberry Shortcake Murder. I was in the mood for something light and fun so this was the perfect book.

I did manage to guess who the murderer was, which I always find fun to do. I like that the clues are all there and it's just a matter of putting the right clues together to come up with the right conclusions.

The recipes in the book also just sound so good and there are a few that I would really love to try out.  The majority of them sound so good.  I think my one complaint about this series is that the descriptions of food always make me feel really hungry.

Overall, I really enjoyed Strawberry Shortcake Murder, it was a light, fun and really entertaining read.  I really love this series and look forward to reading the next book.