The Perfect Assassin by JAMES PATTERSON AND BRIAN SITTS

Prof. Brandt Savage—grandson of the legendary action hero Doc Savage—is forced into a top-secret training program where he discovers his true calling…as the perfect assassin.

Dr. Brandt Savage, the grandson of Doc Savage, is about to go on a sabbatical from the University of
Chicago but instead finds himself kidnapped and hustled into a dark van. He has no clue who would want to kidnap him but he is going to find out soon that nothing is what he thinks it is.

Savage has become the student. And his professor is demanding to say the least.

The book bounces back and forth from his captors’ childhood and training to the present, where Savage is having some intense training sessions. Physically and mentally challenging. He still has no clue why he’s being bulked up and made mission-ready. Until they go back to where she was trained and he learns who she is and why she needs him.
 
This one was interesting. The only issue I had was that I had just finished a book that was almost identical to the first fourth of the book. But I’ll continue to read them!

NetGalley/Grand Central Publishing November 15, 2022      

THE LAST PARTY by CLARE MACKINTOSH

At midnight, one of them is dead.
By morning, all of them are suspects.

It’s a party to end all parties, but not everyone is here to celebrate.

So many layers to unpack with this one. It’s New Year’s Day and Ffion Morgan is looking at a dead body and a lot of suspects.

On New Year’s Eve, Rhys Lloyd is entertaining the neighbors and townsfolk on Mirror Lake. His vacation houses seem to be popular with the rich and not so much with the town folk. With everyone drinking champagne, who would guess that Rhys would end up floating dead in the lake.

There are so many secrets in this one. It is a small town but that means her neighbors are also suspects.

I am not sure any of these folks know what the truth is. And it turns out the question should be who did not kill him

This author is so good at red herrings and twisting us up in a really good tale!

NetGalley/November 8th, 2022 by Sourcebooks Landmark

LIVID by PATRICIA CORNWELL

A Kay Scarpetta Novel #26

We are back with Kay, Lucy, and all the gang! And you know there is about to be drama! Of the murderous kind.

Chief Medical Examiner, Dr. Kay Scarpetta is testifying in a sensational murder trial. Cameras in the courtroom, abrasive attorneys, and a judge who seems to not have Kay’s back.

The trial is causing problems in Old Town. Traffic, true crime enthusiasts, and as she gets in her car with Pete, news of a murder in the home of the said judge. The story is that two years ago a former beauty queen washed ashore. Last seen on the boat with the fiance’, who has been sitting in jail since.

Kay is uneasy about a lot these days. The case as well as finding the mole in her office. Someone is set on ruining her for good. Could it be the last case?

Well, Patricia Cornwell always delivers a taut, and believable story. This was a good one!

NetGalley/October 25th, 2022 by Grand Central Publishing





BLACK DOG by STUART WOODS (Stone Barrington #62)

Stone Barrington is back in New York City. Hoping for some downtime but that doesn’t seem to be in the cards for him.

I’m excited about this one. Joan, who is one of my favorite characters, is front and center in this one. Introducing her uber-rich aunt to Stone. Her aunt has somewhat of a chequered past but is also married to one of the wealthiest men in the world. Or she was until he recently died.

Although she’s sixty, she looks forty and has the hots for Stone. And who wouldn’t? She also wants to give him millions in business and make him the executor of her will and her stepson’s trust. The stepson is too bad for a black sheep even. And boy does this Eddie character not have a moral bone in his body.

He is desperate and we all know desperate people do desperate things. Like murder and forgery.

This was a very humorous book. Stone always has a good sense of humor but who knew about Joan?

Woods always gives us a good time with Stone, Dino, and Joan. This one was especially good!

NetGalley/02 Aug 2022 Penguin Group/Putnam

Stuart Woods passed away on July 22, 2022 Our hearts will be broken and grateful for all of the wonderful books we enjoyed!

ALIAS EMMA by AVA GLASS

In this breakneck, race-against-the-clock thriller, a British spy has twelve hours to deliver her asset across London after Russia hacks the city’s security cameras. Can she make it without being spotted . . . or killed?

Nothing about Emma Makepeace is real. Not even her name.

A daughter of a Russian mother and father. She and her mother have fled to London and her father stays behind. All she has ever wanted is to be a spy. To make the Russians pay for what they did to him and her family.

Fresh from graduating basic, the former Army member is eager for her first assignment. And she gives it all she has.

This is a secret organization inside the CIA. But not everyone is trustworthy as Emma will soon find out. Rushing against time, Russian agents, and even some crooked CIA, she must be invisible in a city with cameras everywhere.

All she knows is she has to protect a valuable son of a dissident Russian scientist. But something isn’t right. When she calls for a pickup, no one shows. Where is her boss and who is this man running things now. A leak? A collaborator?

Trusting the cryptic message from her old boss, she goes running and ends up in a lot of nasty places. They are shot at, beaten, and not sure at all who is setting up who and why.

I loved the female spy. Emma was a most determined young lady and I hope we see more of her.

NetGalley/ August 2nd, 2022 by Bantam





THE NEW NEIGHBOR by KAREN CLEVELAND

Beth Bradford and her husband Mike have just dropped their last child off at college. They have a buyer for the large home they raised their children in and are downsizing. The cul-de-sac they have lived in will be getting a new neighbor and Beth is feeling sad.

But wait, things can always get worse! Turns out Mike is not moving in with Beth. He has a place of his own and wants a divorce. PIle on top of that her demotion as she calls it at the CIA. For fifteen years she has been chasing a terrorist who is known as The Neighbor. Recruiting in the states now. But she is nowhere close to solving this case and when she goes to work she is told she is being transferred to a teaching facility.

But Beth has had way too much piled on her this week. She begins spying on the couple that bought their house after she sees a message from The neighbor saying they have moved to a new cul-de-sac. There is something suspicious about the woman. Her story doesn’t check out. And the more she digs the more secrets she finds among the neighbors she once called friends.

Madeline has moved into Beth’s old house. She knows way too much about Beth and the neighbors. Beth thinks she may be the link to the neighbor.

Is she being paranoid? Almost all of the neighbors work for Langley, so secrets are the norm.

Beth isn’t a quitter and she isn’t giving up on this case. Even after she’s told to let it go and people are hinting she is unstable. But she isn’t letting it go. And neither is Madeline.

The ending was shocking and unexpected. I will be looking at my neighbors in a new light now.

NetGalley/July 26th, 2022 by Ballantine Books


THE BINDING ROOM by NADINE MATHESON

From the author of The Jigsaw Man comes the second installment of Inspector Anjelica Henley. The Jigsaw man was a great and gruesome read and I was looking for more of that.

This one has the characters all still traumatized from Olivier so everyone is a bit off their game. But when a pastor in the community is brutally murdered, there are so many suspects it’s hard to pick just one!

And what they find in a hidden room is downright gruesome. These people have taken religion in a whole new direction. And wow are they good at justifying their actions. Totally insane.

Anjelica is still conflicted where her boss is concerned, which is an interesting side piece. I didn’t care for the husband one bit.

There are so many twists and turns it was hard to keep straight but I did. And it’s always the last reason and person you suspect of getting their own brand of justice.

NetGalley/ Harlequin July 12, 2022

WHAT MOVES THE DEAD by T. KINGFISHER

From the award-winning author of The Twisted Ones comes a gripping and atmospheric retelling of Edgar Allan Poe’s classic “The Fall of the House of Usher.”

This one had a bit of everything scary! The war, deadly fungi, ghostly animals, and the House of Usher, already half fallen.

When Alex Easton, now retired from the soldier’s life, receives a letter from his friend, Roderick that tells him he is certain his sister, Madeline Usher, is dying of some unknown cause. Roderick himself sounds odd.

Alex arrives to find the house in shambles. Falling down around them and cold as ice. There is a doctor in residence trying to find out what is wrong with Madeline besides her catalepsy.

To Alex, both of his friends look like wraiths. Thin and pale to the point of looking ghostly. While out walking Alex meets Ms. Potter, who is illustrating and writing about fungi. The deadly ones, the edible ones, and the ones that are just interesting. She is also suspicious of the black lake full of strange algae that glow at night. The same lake that Alex finds Madeline going to each night.

Her sleepwalking is getting worse. And she seems to be confused about words, as well as her shedding. Yes, I said shedding.

The animals are also a mystery. The hares here seem to be off. The whole place seems off. But whatever you are thinking I can almost guarantee you that the ending is not what you thought!

Always a thrilling read with Kingfisher.

NetGalley/ July 12th, 2022 by Tor Nightfire




UPGRADE by BLAKE CROUCH

“You are the next step in human evolution.”

Logan Ramsay works for the Gene Police. They shut down unscrupulous gene-editing labs so what happened with Logan’s mother, never happens again. While Logan spent a little time in prison for what happened, his mother chose to drive off a cliff.

During a raid gone bad, Logan is infected with something. When he wakes up he feels different. More aware. And has a deep ache in his bones. When his boss finds out, he is put in isolation. Lockdown really. But he keeps evolving. Getting stronger, needing less sleep, able to give his full attention to more than one thing at a time. His genome has been hacked.

This isn’t a random attack. This goes way back. But is it even possible? His mother died, right? Unable to do much but answer questions and submit to tests, his abilities just get stronger. Until someone breaks him out. And that someone is his sister. He hasn’t seen her in a while but apparently, she got the upgrade as well. And now she wants to continue her mother’s work. Logan does not. With an uneasy truce between them, they head off to find their mother and the truth.

What she will set in motion could kill millions of people and maybe save the planet. But is the cost too high? Logan thinks it is.

I am not a SciFi reader, except when it comes to this author. I have no idea how he comes up with this stuff, but I can tell you why I fully immerse myself in each book. I felt every change. The tension and heartbreak he carries from leaving his family for the good of the world. You are right there with him. Urging him on and wondering if I would do the same thing.

His books are so good because there is a real possibility that this could happen. And that is scary. Maybe we will all have to evolve into something more to ensure our species survives. And now I can’t stop thinking about that.

NetGalley/ July 12th, 2022 by Ballantine Books





RIZZOLI & ISLES: LISTEN TO ME by TESS GERRITSEN

Rizzoli and Isles #13

Detective Jane Rizzoli and Forensic Pathologist Maura Isles are investigating the gruesome murder of a nurse, whilst also protecting a young student from a stalker. But immersed in their day jobs, will they lose sight of something sinister happening much closer to home?

Jane and Maura are back solving crimes. And this time they are investigating an awful murder of a nurse. While also trying to keep a stalker away from a young girl. They are so busy they don’t have time for Angela.

This book starred Angie! While her neighborhood doesn’t have an official neighborhood watch, Angela and her quirky neighbors always know what’s going on. Except now. A man and woman have moved into the rental across from her and she knows in her gut something isn’t right about them. So when the police don’t have time for her and Vince is out of town, she begins to poke her nose into her neighbor’s business.

And this is one of those times when you are looking so hard at the one thing you believe is wrong while the trouble is really where you least expect it.

I have read all of the Rizzoli & Isles books and watched the series. Angela is so funny and such a loveable character. You can see where Jane gets her stubbornness from.

I loved this one.

NetGalley/ July 5th, 2022 Ballentine