Saturday, May 30, 2015

Angela Marsons: Silent Scream

In her debut novel Angela Marsons shows that the uglier a secret the harder it is to keep it hidden:

Five figures crowd around a shallow grave all swearing they will keep the secret of what has happened that night, an innocent life has been taken to save their own, they have made a pact with blood. Many years later a head mistress of a children's home is found brutally killed in her home and when buried remains are discovered at the former children's home Detective Inspector Kim Stone realizes that this home has many buried secrets. Stone is all too familiar with life in a state run children's home and knows the horrors that can happen here, but which secret of many is the cause to murder. As the body count rises Stone needs to stop the murderer before they can strike again as Stone herself may find that she is the next target.

This is a fantastic book, a great read and I did not want to put it down. I think this is the best mystery debut novel I have read in a long time. This book is well paced, never really slows down but takes the time to develop the main character D.I. Kim Stone. I always love a book that keeps me guessing to the end and I think you will find that happens with Silent Scream, just when you think you have figured everything out Marsons throws in another twist, another piece of evidence that changes your perspective. I don't think I can say it enough, this is a great mystery read and I think a must read for mystery lovers.

D.I. Kim Stone has had a tough past but that is what has fortified her into the women and detective that she is today and she draws on this strength to help her achieve what she wants. These past scars have also left her with the ability to question authority (makes me wonder how she made it to detective Inspector status) as well as the phrase it is easier to ask forgiveness than permission, which makes some interesting conversations with her superior. Stone is a shoot from the hip kind of detective but she has the brain to go along with her decisions. I also liked how Stone managed the other detectives that were part of her team, never asking them to do something that she herself would not do as well as knowing the strengths of each and using them to the best of their ability. It is really hard to find fault with the character that Marsons has created.

Loved the mystery aspect which is what this book is about, yes the body count does get up there but I did not find that that Marsons was overly descriptive of the murders or the scenes. I say murders as for most of the victims in the book, the reader spends the last few moments with them which was a smart move by Marsons as you become more invested in the book even if you don't like some of the victims. This book also had an interesting twist at the end that was not needed but added to the over all story that Marsons had created as well as wrapping up some unanswered questions from the past.

I think this was the perfect book for Marsons to start her series off with and the plot that she executed let the reader get to really know the main character but not take away from the investigation and mystery. Marsons hits all the points that I think are needed in a great mystery read and I do not think readers will be disappointed, just be prepared to not want to put it down. I'm excited to get my hands on the next book in this series, Marsons has set the bar high not only for herself, but also other debut mystery writers out there.

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Monday, May 11, 2015

Anne Bishop: Vision in Silver

In order to enjoy and understand this book you are going to need to read the previous two books Written in Red (which is a fantastic debut novel) and Murder of Crows. These books really set the stage for Vision in Silver and I cannot fathom how you could understand the story, characters and world without reading the first two.

Anne Bishop is back with the third book in her Others series and if the Others thought that the human were cruel before, they are going to see a whole new side of them:

After the Others freed the cassandra sangue from one compound they did not realize what type of consequences there would be for the other compounds around the country as the controllers attempt to dump their “stock”. They also did not realize how hard of a time the cassandra sangue would have with adapting to the outside world and there have been many deaths along the way. If this was not enough to concern the Others there are shadows of war creeping in from across the Atlantik where the Humans First and Last movement is gaining more momentum. They are a group that will stop at nothing to ensure their own gain and to have more followers. Everyone is playing a deadly game one that the Others knows how it will end, but everything has complications especially when they look at their newly formed Human pack.

I really enjoy this series, but there has yet to be a book that beats the first one. I did not find that I was engaged in this book or on the edge of my seat as much as I was in the first book and even the second to some extent. I think that this was mainly due to the fact that this book felt more like a filler book as nothing really seems to happen throughout most of the novel (till near the end) and this book just seems to be setting things up for bigger things to come (ie the new village).

There were a lot more point of views in this book as we interact with some of the characters from in the village but also the Inuit and some of the cassandra sangue girls that were rescued from compound. I liked the Bishop took the time to explore the some of the problems that the girls are having with being in the outside world, even Jane who was born there and the adjustment that need to be made. I think that the cassandra sangue will be an even more powerful source once they are able to learn to control their powers (which I am also glad that Bishop touched on this topic as well). Your heart does break a little when you read them struggling to adapt to this strange world, and how it is too much for some of them

There was also more of Meg's Human pack in this book as they try to help her with her visions as well as the integration into regular life. It is very interesting the see the story arc that Bishop has taken in regards to humans and the Others as from the first book you never would have thought that the Others would be able to accept any human among them. I like that Bishop has allowed even the most stubborn of characters to learn and grow, and it seems that the human on the outside are the one that have forgotten and have not learned a thing.

I found that the relationship between Meg and Simon took a backseat in this book, as there is less interaction between them. I like that Bishop is taking her time to develop this relationship and I am interested in seeing where she is going to go with it, but if you are reading this book for just Simon and Meg's relationship you will probably be disappointed.

I have found that both the second and third book in this series has yet to live up to the first and I am hopeful that Bishop will be able to achieve this in the fourth book. This is a series that has grabbed a hold of me and I don't want to let go. I am looking forward to the next book in the series and I hope it comes out soon :)

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