Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Monthly Reading Summary - March 2014

Here's my monthly reading summary for March.  As always, the links take you to my full review here on the blog if you are interested in learning more about the books.

All ratings are on a scale of 1 (bad) to 5 (great).

THE CHASE by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg (O'Hare and Fox #2) - 4
FBI Agent O'Hare and wanted criminal Fox must team up to recover a stolen Chinese artifact and return it unnoticed before an international incident occurs.

The plot was quite fun and twisted in some unexpected ways.  Plenty of tense moments hoping our heroes could pull off the impossible.  The characters are still on the shallow side, but this book is fun, fun, fun!

NOTE: I was sent an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.

DUMMY OF A GHOST by Sue Ann Jaffarian (Ghost of Granny Apples #3.67) - 5
This e-novella once again focuses on Emma's daughter Kelly, who is home for Spring Break reconnecting with her high school friends.  When she sees a ghost who tells her one friend is in some unknown danger, she teams up with Granny and Emma to find out what is happening.

The characters are strong and the plot is great.  This may be a novella, but everything is perfectly developed.  The virtual pages flew by, and I can't wait until the next novel comes out next month.

NOTE: I was sent an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.

AN APPETITE FOR MURDER by Lucy Burdette (Key West Food Critic Mysteries #1) - 4
Hayley is trying to get a job at the new magazine in Key West as a food critic.  This is despite the fact that she found the magazine's owner in bed with Hayley's boyfriend.  But when the owner is killed, Hayley finds herself the chief suspect in the murder.

Since I liked the most recent one when I read it a couple months ago, I thought I'd go back and start at the beginning.  Hayley seems to have more flaws here than in the later book, although I still loved her.  The story was a little slow to get going as well, but I got hooked in the second half.  A good start to a fun series.

NOTE: I was sent this book in exchange for my honest review.

COLD-CASE CHRISTIANITY by J. Warner Wallace - 4
A former cold case investigator puts the skills he learned on his job to looking at the evidence for the New Testament.

It's an interesting take on things, and his logic provides some good insights at times.  However, I also felt it was a little shallow at times.  A good introduction if you aren't familiar with the subject, and the notes in the back provide more detail if you want to examine it further.

BLACKBERRY PIE MURDER by Joanne Fluke (Hannah Swensen #17) - 4
It's been four months since Hannah last found a dead body, and the only thing on her mind is getting her mother to settle on something for her wedding.  That is until a sever summer storm forces Hannah to lose control of her car and hit a man, killing him.  But no one recognizes him.  Who is he?  And what was he doing in Lake Eden?

There is little that changes in the lives of the characters, but I still enjoyed visiting them again since I found them their normal charming selves.  The cliffhanger at the end definitely made me want the next book out soon.  Can't believe I have to wait a year to find out what happens next.

LET THE STORM BREAK by Shannon Messenger (Sky Fall #2) - 5
Vane is covering for Audra's absence, and he's dealing with horrible nightmares any time he sleeps.  Meanwhile, Audra isn't sure what she is looking for, but she finds more danger than she bargained for.  Meanwhile, the villain is plotting to capture both of them.

Another spellbinding book that had me turning pages as quickly as I could.  The characters are great, too.  Anyone looking for a great YA fantasy book will love this one.

I EVEN FUNNIER by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein (I Funny #2) - 4
As Jamie Grimm prepares for the regionals in the Planet's Funniest Kid Contest, he must continue to deal with typical middle school problems like figuring out girls and relationships, his friend's problems, and tutoring his cousin who also happens to be the class bully.

I enjoyed this book more than the first in the series, possibly because I saw the more slice of life nature of the book.  Some stories start and end early while others for running threads that last longer.  Holding it all together is the comic contest.  The fun illustrations help make this book a very fast read.