4/5, A, AUTHOR, Book Review, Fiction, RATING, Read in 2010, READING CHALLENGES 2010

REVIEW: Shall We Tell the President? by Jeffrey Archer

Shall We Tell the President?
by Jeffrey Archer

Copyright: 1977, 1985
Pages: 322
Rating: 4/5
Read: Jan. 23-26, 2010
Challenge:  2010 100+ Reading Challenge; Random Reading Challenge; RYOB 2010; Thriller & Suspense 2010
Yearly Count: 4

First Line: “I, Florentyna Kane, do solemnly swear…”

Florentyna Kane has finally achieved everything that she hoped to – she has been elected as President of the United States of America. She hopes that her legacy will be in her Gun Control bill that she is pushing through Congress. But there are a lot of people who are opposed to the legislation – even people who want to kill Florentyna in order to kill the bill. FBI agent Mark Andrews knows that there is going to be a presidential assassination, but he doesn’t know the who, when, where, or how. He only has six days to figure out who wants the President killed. He doesn’t know who he can trust. He doesn’t know anything except that he must divert this possible assassination.

I’ve only read one other Jeffrey Archer book, False Impression, and I really enjoyed it. This one was almost as enjoyable. As I tend to do with older books, I found some of the things a little dated (hello! Cell phone Mr. FBI Agent! Oh wait – they don’t exist yet.) And this one had a few slow spots that had some slightly unnecessary information. Overall though, the book was quite enjoyable. It was really interesting to see everything unfold for Mark Andrews, and how he had to determine who was behind the possible assassination plot. I think I will look for more Archer books in the future.

4/5, Alex Cross, AUTHOR, Book Review, Fiction, P, RATING, Read in 2010, READING CHALLENGES 2010, SERIES

REVIEW: Four Blind Mice by James Patterson

Four Blind Mice
by James Patterson

Copyright: 2002
Pages: 383
Rating: 4/5
Read: Jan. 18-22, 2010
Challenge:  2010 100+ Reading Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010; Finish That Challenge Series; RYOB 2010; Thriller & Suspense 2010
Yearly Count: 3

First Line: The District Attorney for Cumberland County, North Carolina, Marc Sherman, pushed the old wooden captain’s chair away from the prosecution, and it made a harsh, scraping eeek in the nearly silent courtroom.

Alex Cross is ready to resign from the D.C. police force. But there will be one last case that he simply can’t refuse before he can resign. His best friend and partner, John Sampson, comes to Alex asking him to help him prove that a good friend of John’s has been framed for murder and will be executed. His accusers are the United States Army. Tackling such a case will be more of a challenge than they could ever imagine. And this case goes deeper than either of them would have ever thought.

I love this series, and this was another good installment. While this one was not as good as my personal favorite in the series (Roses are Red) this one was still a good strong book. I like the direction that Alex Cross is going in in regards to his personal life. It will be interesting to see how things end up for John and Alex in the next few books.

Life

Last Night Was Awful!!

And by awful, I mean awful!! I had a terrible virus on my computer last night. It took over my whole computer. I couldn’t open ANY of my files. $89 and 2 hours on the phone with McAfee later and the virus was gone!!

And of course what was the first thing that came to my mind: Oh my goodness, my reading lists are in Word Documents, I don’t want to lose them!! So I’m thinking about keeping a paper journal as well as an electronic version. Currently I keep a Word Document, one for each year since 2007, that lists the Title, Copyright and my rating for each book that I read. I’m kind of looking for a new system to keep my information. So I’m posing a question to all my readers: What kind of a system do you use to keep track of your reading? I’m just trying to get some feedback so that I can find a system that will work for me. Any and all advice is greatly welcome! Thanks in advance!!!

5/5, AUTHOR, Book Review, Fiction, K, Maggie O'Dell, RATING, Read in 2010, READING CHALLENGES 2010, SERIES

REVIEW: Exposed by Alex Kava

Exposed
by Alex Kava

Copyright: 2008
Pages: 373
Rating: 5/5
Read: Jan. 7-10, 2010
Challenge:  2010 100+ Reading Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010; Finish That Challenge Series; RYOB 2010; Thriller & Suspense 2010
Yearly Count: 2

First Line: Waheem was already bleeding when he boarded the crowded motorboat.

FBI profiler Maggie O’Dell and Assistant Director Cunningham cannot believe what is happening to them until it’s too late – they have been exposed. Exposed to a very deadly virus. Stuck in quarantine, Maggie beings to wonder if there isn’t some kind of a connection with the victims. Cunningham thinks it’s personal. And it is – they just have to figure out how. With nothing to think of except what could be going on inside her body, Maggie has to get inside this killer’s mind. And she needs to do so before this becomes an epidemic.

I love the Maggie O’Dell series. I was a little late in getting around to this one, mainly because medical-ish books are not really my cup of tea. But I should have known better- Alex Kava has never disappointed me yet. Since it has been so long since I read anything in this series, it was a little difficult for me trying to remember what had happened with the characters in the earlier books. There’s just something about the way Kava writes. Her books are always full of such great suspense and of course I absolutely love the psychological aspects!! I’m definitely looking forward to getting  Black Friday from the library so that I can get caught up on this series again until July when the 8th book in this series is set to be published.

5/5, AUTHOR, Book Review, C, Fiction, RATING, Read in 2010, READING CHALLENGES 2010

REVIEW: Hold Tight by Harlan Coben

Hold Tight
by Harlan Coben

Copyright: 2008
Pages: 477
Rating: 5/5
Read: Jan. 1-6, 2010
Challenge:  2010 100+ Reading Challenge; 2010 Celebrate the Author Challenge; Countdown Challenge 2010; RYOB 2010
Yearly Count: 1

First Line: Marianne nursed her third shot of Cuervo, marveling at her endless capacity to destroy any good in her pathetic life, when the man next to her shouted, “Listen up, sweetcakes: Creationism and evolution are totally compatible.”

Mike and Tia Baye know that they are losing touch with their teenage son, Adam. After losing his best friend to suicide, Adam has become more and more withdrawn. He spends all his time in his room on the computer. They decide that their best option to finding out what is going on with their son is to install some software on his computer that will tell them every website that he visits and logs all of his e-mails and instant messages. But what they end up finding and what it implies and eventually leads to is beyond anything that either Mike or Tia would ever have thought possible. Adam is in over his head and what he is involved with could end up taking the whole family down in the end.

I always love Harlan Coben’s books. They are always fast paced and enjoyable. This one was definitely no exception. There were many twists and turns, and even at the end I was kind of surprised by what really started everything that happened in motion. I think a lot of parents today can relate to how their children spend so much time on the internet and they don’t really know what’s going on at all. I personally liked how Mr. Coben made it really obvious that a lot of people don’t really understand how quickly children are growing up nowadays, but with Adam’s sister, Jill’s character, he really made it obvious. I’m a huge Harlan Coben fan, so it’s hard for me to not to rave about every book of his I read (although I do prefer is stand-alones to his Myron Bolitar series).

READING CHALLENGES 2010

CHALLENGE: Finish That Series Challenge

Royal Reviews is hosting Finish That Series Challenge. This challenge focuses on finishing up the challenges that you have started. Well trust me – this is something that I desperately need! I have so many challenges started that it’s not even funny anymore. And I have kind of decided that 2010 would be the year that I would really work on making progress on my favorite series’. So here are the guidelines:

1. Anyone can join. You don’t need a blog to participate.
–Non-Bloggers: Include your information in the comment section.

2. There are four levels:

— Curious – Finish 2 series.

— Fascinated – Finish 3 series.

— Addicted – Finish 5 series.

— Obsessed – Finish 10 series.

3. Any genre counts.

4. You can list your books in advance or just put them in a wrap up post. If you list them, feel free to change them as the mood takes you.

5. Challenge begins January 1st thru December, 2010.

So there are the rules. I am going to commit to Fascinated: 3 series. I have 5 series on my list that I made up that I would really like to get finished, but I’m only going to commit to 3 with the possibility of upping my level later on. Here are the series that I would really like to work on:

The others that I have in consideration for this challenge are:

  • P.J. Parrish’s Louis Kincaid series (I have read 3 of the 10)
  • Keith Ablow’s Frank Clevenger series (I have read 1 of the 6)

So there it is. That is what I’m going to work on. I hope I really do well with this series because I love reading books that are part of a series and I really want to be caught up with my favorites.

Reading Statistics

2009 Reading Statistics

Well, here it is …. 2010! Can’t believe another great year has gone by so quickly! I thought I would go ahead and take the time to post the information in regards to my reading in 2009. Here goes:

Overview

  • Books Read: 74
  • Books Un-Finished: 3
  • Pages Read: 24,430
  • Male Authors: 27
  • Female Authors: 25
  • New-To-Me Authors: 32
  • Longest Book Read: Heartstopper by Joy Fielding, 565 pages
  • Shortest Book Read: Rape: A Love Story by Joyce Carol Oates, 154 pages

Best & Worst

  • Best Reading Month Based on Number of Books: December (12)
  • Worst Reading Month Based on Number of Books: March (3)
  • Best Reading Month Based on Number of Pages: December (3,851)
  • Worst Reading Month Based on Number of Pages: March (1,294)

Averages

  • Average Books Read Per Month: 6
  • Average Pages Read Per Month: 2,036
  • Average Pages Per Book: 330.13

Top 10 Favorites (In alphabetical order):

  • Dancing with Ana by Nicole Barker
  • Sweetheart by Chelsea Cain
  • No Place Like Home by Mary Higgins Clark
  • The BoneMan’s Daughters by Ted Dekker
  • The Secret Between Us by Barbara Delinsky
  • Whispers by Lisa Jackson
  • To the Power of Three by Laura Lippman
  • Heart of Ice by Gregg Olsen
  • Roses are Red by James Patterson
  • She Loves Me Not by Wendy Corsi Staub

Breakdown of the Numbers

  • Page Distributions
    • 0-200 pages: 3
    • 201-300 pages: 25
    • 301-400 pages: 30
    • 401-500 pages: 15
    • Over 501 pages: 1
  • Publication Date
    • 2008: 15
    • 2000-2007: 36
    • 1990s: 15
    • 1980s: 4
    • 1970s: 1
  • By Genre
    • Fiction: 68
    • Non-fiction: 6
  • By Rating
    • 5/5: 21
    • 4.5/5: 5
    • 4/5: 30
    • 3.5/5: 10
    • 3/5: 7
    • 2/5: 1
    • 1/5: 0
    • 0/5 (DNF’s): 3
  • Source of Book
    • Owned: 43
    • Library: 22
    • Review Book: 9
  • Authors Read Multiple Times This Year
    • Chelsea Cain: 2
    • Paul Christopher: 2
    • Catherine Coulter: 2
    • Sue Grafton: 2
    • Charlaine Harris: 6
    • Jacquelyn Mitchard: 2
    • James Patterson: 11
    • Tamara Thorne: 3
  • Challenges
    • Challenges Completed: 5
    • Challenges Unfinished: 6
Challenge Wrap-Up, READING CHALLENGES 2009

Unfinished Challenge – RYOB 2009

MizB hosted Read Your Own Books in 2009. She’s also hosting again in 2010 and I’m signed up again. Now, the idea of this one was to set a number of books that you wanted to read … but they had to be your OWN books. Needless to say, this was not a problem with my huge TBR mountain. However, I still fell short! I was a little disappointed that I didn’t read more of my own books than I did. I was actually quite surprised to realize how many library books I did read this year. But there were more than a few new releases that I wanted to read immediately and I absolutely refuse to buy a hardcover book (for a person who can fly through a book in 2-3 days, nearly $30 is insane to spend on a book). My goal was 50 books, 25 of which needed to be on my shelf prior to 2009. I did pretty good only falling short by 4 books. So I’m actually quite proud of my final results of this challenge. And I’m definitely looking forward to doing this challenge again in 2010 because I just keep adding books to my shelves!! Here is what I read:

  1. Final Jeopardy by Linda Fairstein (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  2. Jack & Jill by James Patterson (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  3. Deal Breaker by Harlan Coben (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  4. C is for Corpse by Sue Grafton (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  5. Three to Get Deadly by Janet Evanovich (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  6. To the Power of Three by Laura Lippman (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  7. Postmortem by Patricia Cornwell (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  8. The Secret Between Us by Barbara Delinksy (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  9. The 6th Target by James Patterson (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  10. Hearstopper by Joy Fielding (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  11. The Broken Parachute Man by Robert B. Bolin (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  12. Heart of Ice by Gregg Olsen (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  13. Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  14. Capital Offense by Kathleen Antrim (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  15. 7th Heaven by James Patterson (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  16. Whispers by Lisa Jackson (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  17. The 8th Confession by James Patterson (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  18. A Tisket, a Tasket, a Fancy Stolen Casket by Fran Rizer (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  19. Snagged by Carol Higgins Clark (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  20. In a Dark Time by Larry Watson (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  21. Sail by James Patterson (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  22. Cat & Mouse by James Patterson (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  23. The Piper’s Sons by Bruce Chandler Fergusson (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  24. Executive Privilege by Phillip Margolin (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  25. An Ice Cold Grave by Charlaine Harris (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  26. She Loves Me Not by Wendy Corsi Staub (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  27. When the Bough Breaks by Jonathan Kellerman (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  28. Michelangelo’s Notebook by Paul Christopher (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  29. The Godwulf Manuscript by Robert B. Parker (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  30. The Surgeon by Tess Gerritsen (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  31. ‘D’ is for Deadbeat by Sue Grafton (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  32. A Bone to Pick by Charlaine Harris (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  33. Pop Goes the Weasel by James Patterson (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  34. The Murder of Laci Peterson by Cliff Linedecker (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  35. The Double Eagle by James Twining (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  36. Silent Witness by Richard North Patterson (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  37. Denial by Keith Ablow (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  38. The Aztec Heresy by Paul Christopher (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  39. Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  40. No Place Like Home by Mary Higgins Clark (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  41. Roses are Red by James Patterson (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
  42. The Sorority: Eve by Tamara Thorne (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  43. The Sorority: Merilynn by Tamara Thorne (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  44. The Sorority: Samantha by Tamara Thorne (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  45. Violets are Blue by James Patterson (Acquired in 2009) REVIEW
  46. The Book of Names by Jill Gregory & Karen Tintori (On shelf before 2009) REVIEW
Challenge Wrap-Up, READING CHALLENGES 2009

Unfinished Challenge – 2009 100+ Reading Challenge

J. Kaye hosted this challenge in 2009. I really enjoyed it even though I fell short. When I signed up I thought for sure I would be able to accomplish this challenge. In 2008 I ended the year with 97 books read. However, I had a more crazy year in 2009 – we bought a house and moved and got a dog. So my reading time was really cut due to those changes. However, I still finished with a strong year – at 74. Of course the vacation to Florida the last week of the year helped – I read 5 books during those 7 days! Crazy, I know! So I was quite pleased with how I ended up finishing this challenge even though I fell short. Here is what I read:

  1. The Chemist by Janson Mancheski (Finished: 1/7/09) REVIEW
  2. Sweetheart by Chelsea Cain (Finished: 1/13/09) REVIEW
  3. The Midnight Twins by Jacquelyn Mitchard (Finished: 1/15/09) REVIEW
  4. Final Jeopardy by Linda Fairstein (Finished: 1/23/09) REVIEW
  5. Over Your Dead Body by David L. (Finished: 1/25/09) REVIEW
  6. Perfect by Harry Kraus, MD (Finished: 1/28/09) REVIEW
  7. All We Know of Heaven by Jacquelyn Mitchard (Finished: 1/30/09) REVIEW
  8. Jack & Jill by James Patterson (Finished: 2/2/09) REVIEW
  9. Deal Breaker by Harlan Coben (Finished: 2/5/09) REVIEW
  10. C is for Corpse by Sue Grafton (Finished: 2/9/09) REVIEW
  11. Three to Get Deadly by Janet Evanovich (Finished: 2/12/09) REVIEW
  12. To the Power of Three by Laura Lippman (Finished: 2/17/09) REVIEW
  13. Postmortem by Patricia Cornwell (Finished: 2/26/09) REVIEW
  14. The Secret Between Us by Barbara Delinksy (Finished: 3/6/09) REVIEW
  15. The 6th Target by James Patterson (Finished: 3/15/09) REVIEW
  16. Heartstopper by Joy Fielding (Finished: 3/22/09) REVIEW
  17. The Reader by Bernard Schlink (Finished: 4/5/09) REVIEW
  18. The Broken Parachute Man by Robert B. Bolin (Finished: 4/10/09) REVIEW
  19. Heart of Ice by Gregg Olsen (Finished: 4/15/09) REVIEW
  20. Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris (Finished: 4/21/09) REVIEW
  21. Capital Offense by Kathleen Antrim (Finished: 4/30/09 ) REVIEW
  22. The Osiris Alliance by Jack Ford (Finished: 5/11/09) REVIEW
  23. 7th Heaven by James Patterson (Finished: 5/19/09) REVIEW
  24. Whispers by Lisa Jackson (Finished: 5/23/09) REVIEW
  25. Rape: A Love Story by Joyce Carol Oats (Finished: 5/24/09) REVIEW
  26. The 8th Confession by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro (Finished: 5/31/09) REVIEW
  27. The Templar Legacy by Steve Berry (Finished: 6/7/09) REVIEW
  28. A Tisket, a Tasket, a Fancy Stolen Casket by Fran Rizer (Finished: 6/10/09) REVIEW
  29. Snagged by Carol Higgins Clark (Finished: 6/14/09) REVIEW
  30. In a Dark Time by Larry Watson (Finished: 6/19/09) REVIEW
  31. If I Did It by The Goldman Family (Finished: 6/22/09) REVIEW
  32. Grave Surprise by Charlaine Harris (Finished: 6/24/09) REVIEW
  33. The Cove by Catherine Coulter (Finished: 7/4/09) REVIEW
  34. The Maze by Catherine Coulter (Finished: 7/11/09) REVIEW
  35. Sail by James Patterson (Finished: 7/19/09) REVIEW
  36. BoneMan’s Daughter by Ted Dekker (Finished: 7/23/09) REVIEW
  37. The Dyodyne Experiment by James Doulgeris & V. Michael Santoro (Finished: 7/25/09) REVIEW
  38. Cat & Mouse by James Patterson (Finished: 7/31/09) REVIEW
  39. Dancing with Ana by Nicole Barker (Finished: 8/3/09) REVIEW
  40. The Piper’s Sons by Bruce Chandler Fergusson (Finished: 8/8/09) REVIEW
  41. Swimsuit by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro (Finished: 8/11/09) REVIEW
  42. Executive Privilege by Phillip Margolin (Finished: 8/19/09) REVIEW
  43. An Ice Cold Grave by Charlaine Harris (Finished: 8/23/09) REVIEW
  44. She Loves Me Not by Wendy Corsi Stuab (Finished: 8/30/09) REVIEW
  45. sTORItelling by Tori Spelling (Finished: 9/1/09) REVIEW
  46. Real Murders by Charlaine Harris (Finished: 9/6/09) REVIEW
  47. When the Bough Breaks by Jonathan Kellerman (Finished: 9/17/09) REVIEW
  48. Evil at Heart by Chelsea Cain (Finished: 9/22/09) REVIEW
  49. Michelangelo’s Notebook by Paul Christopher (Finished: 9/27/09) REVIEW
  50. The Godwulf Manuscript by Robert B. Parker (Finished: 9/29/09) REVIEW
  51. The Surgeon by Tess Gerritsen (Finished: 10/5/09) REVIEW
  52. ‘D’ is for Deadbeat by Sue Grafton (Finished: 10/10/09) REVIEW
  53. A Bone to Pick by Charlaine Harris (Finished: 10/13/09) REVIEW
  54. Pop Goes the Weasel by James Patterson (Finished: 10/18/09) REVIEW
  55. The Murder of Laci Peterson by Cliff Linedecker (Finished: 10/19/09) REVIEW
  56. Wait Until Twilight by Sang Pak (Finished: 10/21/09) REVIEW
  57. The Double Eagle by James Twining (Finished: 10/25/09) REVIEW
  58. Silent Witness by Richard North Patterson (Finished: 11/6/09) REVIEW
  59. The Eleventh Victim by Nancy Grace (Finished: 11/13/09) REVIEW
  60. The Murder of King Tut by James Patterson & Martin Dugard (Finished: 11/15/09) REVIEW
  61. Grave Secret by Charlaine Harris (Finished: 11/24/09) REVIEW
  62. Denial by Keith Ablow (Finished: 11/28/09) REVIEW
  63. Children of Dust by Ali Eteraz (Finished: 12/3/09) REVIEW
  64. The Aztec Heresy by Paul Christopher (Finished: 12/11/09) REVIEW
  65. Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling (Finished: 12/13/09) REVIEW
  66. No Place Like Home by Mary Higgins Clark (Finished: 12/19/09) REVIEW
  67. Roses are Red by James Patterson (finished: 12/22/09) REVIEW
  68. The Sorority: Eve by Tamara Thorne (Finished: 12/23/09) REVIEW
  69. Decoding the Lost Symbol by Simon Cox (Finished: 12/23/09) REVIEW
  70. The Sorority: Merilynn by Tamara Thorne (Finished: 12/24/09) REVIEW
  71. The Sorority: Samantha by Tamara Thorne (Finished: 12/26/09) REVIEW
  72. Violets are Blue by James Patterson (Finished: 12/27/09) REVIEW
  73. Conflicts with Interest by Michael Ruddy (Finished: 12/30/09) REVIEW
  74. The Book of Names by Jill Gregory & Karen Tintori (Finished: 12/31/09) REVIEW