Monday, June 30, 2014

People's Choice 2014...mysteries and thrillers!

Summer Reading Club for Grown-ups allows Burbank adults to share what they're reading with their peers in the community. If you are signed up, you can see some of the book reviews at the log-in site for the book club; but we thought we would also feature some of them here, on the blog. Here is an eclectic selection of mysteries and thrillers you have been reading. Remember, if you want a source for good mystery reads, check out Aunt Agatha's blog, Death in the Stacks!

Red Velvet Cupcake Murder, by Joanne Fluke
Reviewed by Sue J.

In the 18th installment of Joanne Fluke's Hannah Swenson Cookie Shop mysteries, Hannah is investigating why a party guest fell off the roof when she suddenly becomes a suspect in the murder of a former romantic rival. Hannah must investigate both mysteries while continuing to run her cookie shop,with a little help from her friends and family in Lake Eden, Minnesota. The book is loaded with yummy-sounding recipes. If you like Hannah, it's like a fun visit with a familiar friend. If these are new to you, you can enjoy it without reading the previous books.

Any Other Name, by Craig Johnson
Reviewed by Evelyn P.

Wyoming: A detective looking into cold cases commits suicide. Three women are missing. Sheriff Walt Longmire's friend (a former sheriff) asks Walt to look into the case. What he finds is not what he bargained for. If you haven't read a Longmire book or watched the TV series, try it! You'll get hooked.

Murder in Chelsea, by Victoria Thompson
Reviewed by Naomi A.

This is the 15th book in the series, and it is still as interesting and fun to read as her earlier books.
Sarah, a midwife, is always getting involved in  murders, which she solves with the help of Frank, a New York City detective. The stories take place in NYC in the late 1890s. Without the use of modern science, they are still able to solve the cases by using common sense, determination, some intimidation, luck and logical thinking. It is interesting to follow the stories and realize that the telephone and the EL (elevated trains) are referred to as new modern conveniences! Themes throughout the books include the attitude of the public towards the police, which is one of total distrust due to corruption in the department. Another theme is clothing, used as an indication of a person's status or wealth, which then indicates how the person is treated. Each book can be read as a stand-alone story, but reading them in order shows the progression of Frank and Sarah's relationship.

Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn
Reviewed by Katie Y.

This suspense-filled psychological thriller about a man's wife disappearing on the day of their fifth wedding anniversary kept me glued to the edge of my seat and questioning "Where's Amy?" until the final page. Definitely one of the best thrillers I've read, and I can't wait to see what David Fincher has in store for the movie adaptation.

Murphy's Law and Death of Riley
(Molly Murphy Mysteries #1 & 2) by Rhys Bowen
Reviewed by Melissa E.

Someone (don't remember who) recommended this series to me, and then I got an offer of a free e-book for my Kindle when I bought something else, so I tried it out. I liked it! The heroine, Molly Murphy, reminds me in spirit, if not in fact, of another Molly--the unsinkable Molly Brown--for the way she manages to get herself into and out of all kinds of trouble with a combination of sneakiness, luck, and sheer bravado. The historical details are great, the characters are well thought out, and generally the series is an enjoyable and entertaining read. I will continue!

The Cuckoo's Calling, by Robert Galbraith
Reviewed by Llyr H.

Everyone now knows that Galbraith is a pen name and the novel does not necessarily read as though a male wrote it. J. K. Rowling introduces a new detective on the mystery front, private detective Cormoran Strike. While battling his own personal demons, he takes a case involving a top model and it's his job to determine if hers is a suicide or a murder. Along with a cast of colorful characters, the plot will keep you guessing (somewhat) until the end. I look forward to the second installment that's coming out soon.

Note that we have many of these books in e-book and audio format as well (which may be more convenient for summer reading on the go!).

Watch the blog for more reading "shares" from the adult summer reading club! And be sure to check out all the activities and programs the library is featuring for YOU this summer!

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