Dream Life by Lauren Mechling was an enjoyable YA mystery. Claire Voyant, the book's teen sleuth, has an uncanny ability she inherited from her grandmother Kiki. Claire has the ability to see glimpses of clues in her dreams. While these dream hints and symbols are often difficult for Claire to decipher she is determined to use her powers to help her friends.Dream Life is the second Claire Voyant mystery. These books stand well on their own but I recommend reading Dream Girl first since Dream Life contains spoilers to the first novel.
I began reading Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception by Maggie Stiefvater the day before St. Patrick's Day thinking that the fall of four leaf clovers on the front cover was appropriate for the holiday. I wasn't able to put it down. This book has a pleasant mix of compelling characters and shadowed mystery that kept me reading even when I should have turned the light off for bed (always a sure sign that I'm enjoying a book!). I recommend Lament to fans of young adult, fantasy, and paranormal romance.
I had some high expectations for this book, since I usually enjoy off kilter novels, however I found this one a bit lacking. It seemed to me that author Kris Saknussemm was trying too hard to shock the reader (through often unneccessarily graphic descriptions) and not enough effort on keeping the plot cohesive.
Mystery, Murders, Motivations and Mathematics.This books has it all.The Oxford Murders by Guillermo Martinez is not just a fascinating murder mystery but also a puzzle that captures the reader and keeps you feverishly turning pages until the end. The story is told from the perspective of an Argentinian mathematics graduate student who has just arrived at Oxford and is enjoying the novelty of English subtleties and a tendency toward reserved silence until this tranquil world is upset by a series of murders. The first murder is of his elderly landlady, Mrs. Eagleton. He discovers her body in her parlor while accompanied by the renowned logician Arthur Seldom. Seldom then reveals that he had received a message with the words, "the first of a series" and the address of Mrs. Eagleton with the time 3 p.m. written beneath. The paper also contained a symbol, a carefully drawn circle in black ink. The beginning of a logic puzzle, the solution to which may be the only clue to stopping the murders.
**This is an ARC I received from the Goodreads First Reads program.** This is an amazingly wonderful read. I couldn't put this book down. **possible spoilers**Author Mary Sharratt tells the story of the Daughters of the Witching Hill from the perspective of Bess or Old Demdike as she is known by most in Pendle Forest. Bess, an impoverished widower, becomes a healer or "cunning woman" which lends her some degree of respect amongst her neighbors and a means by which to put food on the table for her growing family. There is a fine line at this time in history, however, between healing and witchcraft and political maneuvering and greed lead many of the poor women (and a few men)of Pendle Forest to be accused of witchcraft. The details of their imprisonment while awaiting trial, and of the trial itself, are told from the perspective of the young Alizon Device.A 5-star read.
Kafka on the Shore blurs the lines between the waking and sleeping world with his unique dreamlike style. Kafka on the Shore begins with the journey of fifteen year old Kafka Tamura as he runs away from home interspersed with top-secret US Department of Defense and Army Intelligence reports about strange events called The Rice Bowl Incidents of 1944. Murakami skillfully weaves a complex tapestry from seemingly unrelated events and characters.
The Last Kabbalist Of Lisbon is an amazing read. The tinder of plague, the wood of drought and the flame of religious intolerance begin a wildfire of riots against the Jews or "New Christians" in the Lisbon massacre of April 1506. During the onset of the riots the lead character, Berekiah Zarco, discovers the body of his murdered uncle and that of a young woman. Details at the murder scene lead Berekiah to conclude that his uncle, a kabbalist wise man, was murdered not by an "Old Christian" but by one of their own. The novel then takes off at a feverish pace and the methodical study of his uncle's murder is all that anchors Berekiah amidst the chaos of violence and terror. Although graphic (contains physical and sexual violence) this is an outstanding novel.
Messenger Of Truth, the fourth book in the Maisie Dobbs mystery series, is filled with a pervasive melancholy that casts its shadow upon Massie and her clients. Jacqueline Winspear masterfully creates a tangled emotional web in which Maisie, with her fine-tuned skills of sensitivity, is ensnared. The war is over but the devastation and dire economic situation have resulted in crime, disease, death and desperation throughout Maisie’s beloved London. When Miss Dobbs is called upon by a fellow former student of Girton College to investigate the circumstances of the death of her brother, a controversial war artist, there are no shortage of suspects or motives if indeed his death were not an accident. Maisie must face her own war demons if she is to find the answers necessary to solve the case. A task made all the more difficult by the tragic events in the life of her assistance Billy and faced with the deteriorating romantic relationship with Andrew Dene.
Maisie Dobbs, female sleuth and former battlefield nurse, tackles three major cases in Pardonable Lies. Maisie is brought in by inspector Stratton of Scotland Yard to interview a young girl suspected of murder. Although evidence puts her at the scene of the crime Maisie believes in the girl's innocence. Sensitive to the loss of her own mother at a young age Maisie strives to find the truth before young Avril Jarvis is separated from her mother permanently with a life prison sentence. Upon arriving home to her room at the Compton residence she finds Lord Compton waiting for her with a request to assist his friend Sir Cecil Lawton prove his son's death. Lawton's wife never believed the reports that her son had died in France during the War and on her deathbed made Sir Cecil promise to find their son. This leads Maisie's friend Priscilla to ask her to conduct a similar investigation into the death of her eldest brother Peter. Priscilla lost all three of her beloved brothers in the War yet Peter's body was never found. Maisie with two cases leading her back to France must face her own demons in her search for truth. Maisie must find the strength to face her own bloody past if she is to find out what truly happened to these two soldiers. I highly recommend this novel for any fan of the mystery genre, however giving this book the mystery label does not in fact do it justice. Winspear breaks beyond the bounds of popular mystery fiction providing us with the clues and investigations that we have grown to love while providing a rich tapestry of historical context and introducing characters with a depth rarely found in modern fiction.