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Rather Be the Devil
Ian Rankin
Buy a Bullet: An Orphan X Short Story (Evan Smoak)
Gregg Hurwitz
Progress: 12/76 pages
No Is Not Enough
Naomi Klein
The Sandman, Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes
Neil Gaiman, Malcolm Jones III, Karen Berger, Sam Kieth, Todd Klein, Mike Dringenberg
Bad Soldier
Chris Ryan
More Than This
Patrick Ness
The View from the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction
Neil Gaiman
The Pier Falls: And Other Stories
Mark Haddon
Faith Versus Fact: Why Science and Religion Are Incompatible
Jerry A. Coyne
Telegraph Avenue: A Novel
Michael Chabon
SPOILER ALERT!

Is Leon really a killer?

The Nightwalker - Jaime Lee Searle, Sebastian Fitzek

The whole premise of the book is on Leon questioning himself, on his own action. Leon is a sleepwalker and he is afraid he has done something terrible in his sleep.

 

The setting up part is okay. With Leon running around and trying to find clue about himself. The not so good part is who is playing with Leon and why.

 

 

Leon thought he killed his wife. For the longest time, I know something is wrong with his wife Natalie. Leon seems to be doing what most guy do, work and try to build a life for himself. 

 

The nasty bits is on who is playing with Leon's life. Most scientists, even psychologists are not that nasty. The story is not the normal level of nastiness. This is unethical and Nazi wartime scientists type of human experiment level of nastiness. Too much to make it believable. It only shows the writer mistrust of scientists and not much else. Maybe it is just a plot device, but it failed big time. 

(show spoiler)

The rest of the story is kind of okay. A 4 stars read. 

 

SPOILER ALERT!

John Puller is trying to find his mother's killer

No Man's Land - David Baldacci

No Man's Land is the first book I read of the John Puller series. It is really good with all the good detective story elements. 

 

Paul Roger is an ex-con and a killer. He is in search for the person who caused him his suffering and his lost of humanity. 

 

A seemingly unrelated story, Paul Puller's father, a general was accused by his wife's old friend for killing her 30 years ago. His son John is trying to find out who really killed his mother and cleared his mother's name.

 

The two person, Roger and John met at a bar when there was a shootout. John saved Roger's life. 

 

While we are at it. Roger is a military experience with extra strength and fast healing capability. Like a Wolverine but without the claws. But instead of good, he was also turned into a killer. 

 

Once their paths crossed, they found they had a common enemy who tried to killed both of them to stop them what their investigation. 

 

The rest is a lot of some NDE and shooting. 

 

Some other minor characters who are involved in this mess. A good story. Might try another one from this series. 

 

Enjoy.  

SPOILER ALERT!

How Dresden fight monsters and get an apprentice

Proven Guilty - Jim Butcher

Something magical and nasty is attacking people.

 

Michael's daughter is in trouble and she manipulated Dresden to help her. Her boyfriend Nelson was in jail and needed bail. 

 

It turned out that Molly's friend were in trouble when monsters attacked a convention that they were attending. Like a horror movies con and the monsters dressed as monsters in movies. 

 

Worst still, Michael is on the job and Dresden has to find help to fight monsters.

 

In the meantime, he got kidnapped. More trouble,

 

The story progress along fine. Just a bit jumpy here and there. 

 

It has explained why Michael's wife, Molly' mom Charity didn't like Dresden.

 

It also explained why Murphy and Dresden didn't hookup. 

 

Fast moving plot with Molly got kidnapped, rescue mission is a good way to build tension and move things along.

 

A solid 4 stars. Half star added for being so readable. 

Oliver Jeffers & Friends "Here We Are" event. 

My favorite book writer Oliver Jeffers telling about how he writes books. 

Festive Task 7

Cold Blood: Nick Stone Thriller 18 - Andy McNab

 

Task 7 

Book themes for Saint Lucia's Day: Read a book set in Scandinavia (Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Sweden - and Finland for the purposes of this game) or a book where ice and snow are an important feature.

 

 

Nick Stone is getting recruited to help a group of amputees to go to North Pole. 

 

Ice and snow is the elementary danger beside the guns and fire. 

 

The plot starts with Nick Stone reluctantly drawn into a task that he didn't want in the first place. 

A guy he knew wanted Stone's help to get his son safe when he and a group of amputees tried to go to a hike on the North Pole. 

 

The son Jack was in the military and got his leg blown off shortly after he got into action.

 

Now that Jack and his fellow friends, other amputees would like to get to the North Pole but their sponsor pulled out.

 

Where to get the money is part of the problem.

 

Now they just landed on a place where there are some armed Russians want to get part of the action of oil underneath the ice.

 

The came the father drawing in Rune, a geek that suppose to put equipment on the ice to see if the ice is melting. 

 

The twist is that everyone is lying. The friend Jack has that could get the money is lying. And they got shot at.

 

After being chased. They ended up stranded  on ice. Cold and dying. Then they got escorted to a Russian submarine. 

 

The bigger picture is the behind twist. Who get the oil? The Americans or the Russians? 

 

Not as engaging as I hope. But I'm not that into extreme sports. 

 

Still a 4 stars read.  

 

 

SPOILER ALERT!
The Snowman: A Harry Hole thriller (Oslo Sequence 5) by Nesbo. Jo ( 2010 ) Paperback - Nesbo. Jo

As a Jo Nesbo fan, I'm excited that one of his Harry Hole book turned into movie.

 

What I dislike is the lack of tension, and the lack of explanation on what's going on so that the audience would know why this movie is called Snowman.

 

For those who have read the book, we know that the killer knew what Harry is up to, but why.

 

In the movie there isn't much build up of the characters or even dialogue. 

 

Why there is a snowman and what is in them?

Why Harry has such strange relationship with his ex?

Why Harry's new female partner seems to be tolerate him so much? Yet being cold to him at time?

Why he fall down on the street and lost consciousness? 

What it has to do with the old case?

Why is it important for him to solve the case?

The drinking part of Harry is just implied but we hardly see him drink in the movie.

Why Harry is famous that attracted the killer's attention in the first place?

The killer was in Harry's house with builder overall, why not reveal the identity of the killer then? In the book, the reader knows who Snowman is before Harry. And that's the tension. Without that, it is more like a police report without the drama.

 

As usual, Michael Fassbender is good as a detective Hole with the complexity and depth of emotion. But even good actor need dialogue and action and other actor to show their strength. This movie didn't give any of the actor much chance. The book is good, the script is not. 

 

Festive Task 3

 

Tasks for Veteran's Day/Armistice Day: Make, or draw a red poppy and show us a pic of your red poppy or other symbol of remembrance –OR– post a quote or a piece of poetry about the ravages of war. 

 

An Irish Airman Foresees His Death - WB Yeats

 

I KNOW that I shall meet my fate
Somewhere among the clouds above;
Those that I fight I do not hate
Those that I guard I do not love;
My country is Kiltartan Cross,
My countrymen Kiltartan’s poor,
No likely end could bring them loss
Or leave them happier than before.
Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,
Nor public man, nor cheering crowds,
A lonely impulse of delight
Drove to this tumult in the clouds;
I balanced all, brought all to mind,
The years to come seemed waste of breath,
A waste of breath the years behind
In balance with this life, this death.

 

 

 

Dresden is being drawn into a fight

Small Favour (The Dresden Files, #10) - Jim Butcher

A bad guy is missing and Dresden is being forced to find him.

 

Then there are more magic people involved. Summer Council, Winter Council.

 

So there is a lot of running around, either he is chasing someone or being chased. 

 

The story is good enough. Not sure why it got so low rating. 

 

It is a story about Molly and Michael and how Dresden handled his magic and his relationships. 

 

Interesting enough for me to read the next one. 

 

4 stars. 

Festive Task 1

 

Tasks for Día de Muertos and All Saint’s Day: create a short poem, or an epitaph for your most hated book ever.

 

Someone has already written about Twilight and 50 Shades Grey. I would like to add mine. 

 

The book I dislike (hate) the most is this "Secret". As it have given so much troubles with my friends who actually believe in this shit or similar things like that.

The Secret - Rhonda Byrne 

 

My reaction is this. The universe does not care about you. The universe does not give a flying fuck about you or your life, job, love life, weight, or planet or galaxy. 

 

It simply refer a personal inflated ego that thing the universe actually care about this one individual among one single specie. I just don't get how someone be that arrogant or self-centered. 

 

 

Related image

 

And of course.  I have similar reaction when persons want to explain about their silly, bad, nonsense behavior by star sign. I dislike astrology just as much.

 

Not very popular among persons who believe in this shit. 

 

Following is the grave that this book should be buried with all other books about astrology. The future of the person is affected by their actions and other people's actions. No among of good or bad thoughts alone would not brought forth any possible or negative results. 

 

Here we go. The grave stone. 

 

Image result for epitaph universe does not care

Festive Task 9

Reamde - Neal Stephenson

 

Tasks for Winter Solstice and Yaldā Night

Grab one of your thickest books off the shelf.  Ask a question and then turn to page 40 and read the 9th line of text on that page.  Post your results. 

 

This book is thick. 1044 pages. 

 

Page 40, line 9

 

"A character who had some vassals but no lord was called a Liege Lord and, obviously enough, sat at the top of a hierarchy; most Liege Lords were small-timers running one or two-layered networks of miners or farmers, but some ran deeper trees comprising thousands of vassals distributed among many layers of the hierarchy, and here was where the intragame politicking really became a significant part of the game, for people who cared and could afford to spend their time that way." 

 

Don't know how to make of it. It is like a game rule, not reality. And there is game rules. Life is a bit more complicated. 

 

Task 6 : Read a children book

How to Break a Dragon's Heart (Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III #8) - Cressida Cowell

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Book themes for Sinterklaas / St. Martin’s Day / Krampusnacht: A Story involving children or a young adult book.


Pick this one up on sale. I like the series as it is a few children book that has a child with disability as the main character. 


Started. Not yet completed. 

 

Festive task 2

 

Other Tasks:

Post a picture from your most recent or favorite vacation on the sea (or a lake, river, or any other body of water larger than a puddle) –OR– if you're living on the sea or on a lake or a river, post a picture of your favorite spot on the shore / banks / beach / at the nearest harbour.


 

This is just a public place to sit, watch the sunset, drink a beer, read a book. It is quite nice and easy accessible.

 

16 festive tasks

Even when I haven't figured out what I'm supposed to do with each task. I am in. 

 

Why not? Reading together is always fun. 

 

 

Already started one task. Black and white cover book.

 

Let see what's going on with other readers and follow their leads. 

30 Years Rebus with Ian Rankin

Rather Be the Devil - Ian Rankin

 

 

It is really a pleasure to meet Ian Rankin. He is much more a people person and funny. He create this character Rebus and then this character has an independent character in his mind that he finds out through writing. 

 

The personality is there. But the background take real research by talking to people, cops and journalists. 

 

He also write about real environment, streets and bars. This is a fun thing that now there is a Rebus tour that run locally. Given me an idea on writing story if I ever want to write one.


Detective story for him is a way how he understand the world. On social and political issue. 

 

It is wonderful. And plus I got my book signed. 

 

1st festive task

Rather Be the Devil - Ian Rankin

 

Book themes for Día de Muertos and All Saint’s Day: A book that has a primarily black and white cover, or one that has all the colours (ROYGBIV) together on the cover.

 

Ian Rankin is coming to town. As part of the preparation, have bought and reading this. 

 

Not my usual choice. As there are much more talk than action in the detective work, as it should be. 

 

So far, there is a cold case coming back. Not sure why it is relevant yet.