Saturday, August 30, 2014

Anonymous Sources by Mary Louise Kelly-4.5 stars

Kelly, Mary Louise, Anonymous Sources. Audible, 2013. Audible Download.
When a Harvard Alumni, Tom Carlisle, falls from the bell tower, everyone assumes it was suicide.  Alexandra James, however, thinks differently. Called to investigate the scene as a reporter, the clues don’t add up and Alex’s instinct says it’s murder. As she digs deeper, she discovers that Tom had a whole different life this past summer in England: a girlfriend who was cheating on him, a terrorist friend, and a mysterious set of circumstances. This high-society case could be Alex’s ticket to getting noticed, but not without a lot of danger. With all the clues adding up to a possible terrorist plot and MI6 and the CIA after her, things are definitely not what they seem. When more and more people start showing up dead, including the lady Alex switched places with on a plane ride, things do not look good for Alex. Will Alex get the scoop she’s always dreamed of or will the killer get his way?
Narrator, Therese Plummer expertly brings to life the characters and story of this book. Here unique voices and intonations smoothly guide the reader through the many plot twists and turns as well as keep them engaged and engrossed. The plot is well-developed and the characters are multi-dimensional. Although the story is a little slower-paced in the beginning, listeners will have a hard time putting this audiobook down. Recommended for fans of spies, mystery, and thrillers.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Herbie's Game by Timothy Hallinan-5 stars

Hallinan, Timothy, Herbie’s Game. Blackstone Audio, 2014. 10:27 hrs. (unbar.) Audible Download.

When Junior Bender’s adoptive father and mentor, Herbie is killed, Junior takes it upon himself to find the killer. Tied to his death is Herbie’s last theft, a disconnects list of people connected to a contract hit for a man named Waddles. As Junior begins to investigate the chain, people on the list start showing up murdered and someone starts threatening his family. Who hired Herbie to steal the list and why did someone kill him? Who is behind the list murders? Who is after Junior?

Narrator, Peter Berkrot is an entertaining narrator and complements the book with his unique voices and intonations. Filled with humor, intrigue, and mystery, this engaging listen is a delight. The characters are well-developed, particularly Junior the anti-hero. The interpersonal relationships between the characters are realistic and enjoyable. Although this is the fourth one in the series, newcomers to the series need not worry. Readers enjoy mysteries and humor will enjoy listening to this book. 

5 stars, ADULT

Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Thief Prince by Chereee Alsop-4.5 stars

Alsop, Cheree, The Thief Prince. Cheree Alsop, 2014. (unbar.) 9.06 hrs. Audible Download.

Ever since her brother’s sickness, Princess Kirit, aka Kit, has been forced to take on the role of Crown Princess. Unfortunately, she doesn’t fit in. As a child, she spent more time with the animals in the stable and learning how to swordfight than running a country. One fateful evening, when all of the Crown Princes and Princesses are visiting for a ball, the Prince of Antor, Prince Andric kidnaps all of them and takes them back to his kingdom. Right as they get there, an avalanche occurs, and the group is forced to spend winter in Antor until the mountain pass clears. As time passes, Kit finds herself getting chummy with the princes and princesses as well as Andric. She also discovers that she likes the people of Antor and, like them, can talk to animals. As she comes of age and grows up, she saves the kingdom and its people a couple times over. When spring comes, however, the people of Antor will have to leave their homeland due to lack of resources. Determined to find a solution for everyone, Kit begins writing home. Although her brother is getting better, her parents are stubbornly not listening to Kit’s pleas to take some of Antor’s people in. To make things even more interesting, Kit starts falling in love with Andric, but if her brother doesn’t continue to get better, she and Andric will have no chance together.  Will Kit find a way to save Antor and continue her relationship with Andric? Will she get her parents to see sense? 

Narrator, Michele Carpenter is a unique, funny, entertaining narrator ideally suited for this book. Her unique voices for the character bring to life their personalities. Although the narration was a little slow at the beginning, it picked up and here transitions were smooth. The plot is a little predictable, but enjoyable. The characters are well-developed and the dynamic that grows between them is amazing and engaging. Readers who like fantasy, adventure, and a little bit of romance will enjoy listening to this book. 

4.5 stars, MS, HS. 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Trapped by Revenge by Colleen Helme-5 stars

Helme, Colleen. Trapped by Revenge. Colleen Helme, 2014. 8.46 hrs.  Audible Download.

Ever since Shelby went to a grocery store to get carrots and got shot, nothing in Shelby Nichols’ life is ever routine or boring, especially with her mind reading abilities caused by the grocery store incident. When Joey “The Knife” Manetto, aka Uncle Joey, asks Shelby to go listen to a private investigator named Sam Kilpack’s thought s, she arrives at the man’s office only to find him dead. To make matters worse, someone’s trying to frame her for Sam’s murder. Her husband’s gun was used as the murder weapon and her fingerprints were all over it. It Shelby hadn’t taken the note that had her name on it and the pen Sam had written her name with prior to his death, she’d be behind bars. When Shelby discovers that another man by the name of Jim was found guilty of killing his girlfriend, she finds out that his girlfriend’s murder has the same M.O as her case. Unfortunately, he’s set to be executed in just a few days.  Could the two cases be connected? Will Shelby and her husband, Chris, be able to clear her name, find the real killer, and save herself and Jim?

This fast-paced, gripping mystery was a treat to listen to. Narrator, Wendy Tremont King’s voices are unique and easily distinguishable. The plot is filled with twist and turns that King handles with ease. The intrigue, suspense, and mystery of the story are well-blended and easily hold the reader’s attention. The characters were well-developed and entertaining and the dynamic between them was humorous and engaging. The narrator’s and author’s pacing complement each other perfectly and are well-suited. Listeners who have read or listened to the other Shelby Nichols adventures will have an easier time understanding what is going on, but this could be read out of order. People who enjoy mystery, adventure, humor, and suspense will thoroughly enjoy listening to this series.
5 stars, ADULT