Thursday, May 31, 2012

Phantom Evil by Heather Graham

Summary: A secret government unit is formed under the oversight of Adam Harrison, famed paranormal investigator. The six members he's gathered know a little of the otherworldly--each has honed a psychic talent of their own.     Jackson Crow, part English, part Cheyenne, heads the group. Haunted by his experience with an ancestral ghost who saved his life as a child, and the recent murders of two previous teammates, Jackson can't tell if Adam's demoted him or given him an extraordinary opportunity. Despite his link to the realm of spirits, he's well aware that the living commit the most heinous crimes, with spiritualist charlatans existing merely to fool and seduce the unwary.
     To counterbalance Jackson's careful skepticism, Adam Harrison has paired him with Angela Hawkins, a young woman who learned the painful lesson of loss at an early age. A police officer utilizing her paranormal intuition in Virginia, she already has her hands full. But Adam's call to New Orleans is strong.
     The case: In a historic mansion in New Orleans's French Quarter, a senator's wife falls to her death from a balcony. Most think she jumped, distraught over the loss of her young son. Some say she was pushed. And yet others believe she was beckoned by the ghostly spirits that inhabit the house--once the site of a serial killer's grisly work.
     Whether supernatural or all too human, crimes of passion, greed and desire will cast the pair into danger of losing their lives...and their immortal souls.
                                                                                      -Summary from

Review: I really liked this book. Each book I read by Heather Graham just make me like her more and more. I love how she intertwines history, the paranormal, crime/murder, and romance in one book. Each character is developed nicely, and you can feel a connection with them, even if they are completely different than you.
     As each Graham book that I have read so far, the ending holds a twist that will shock you. Learning the clues throughout the book are interesting, and they helped me try to figure out who had really killed Regina Holloway. I love crime books and trying to predict the ending before I finish, but with Heather Graham's books, I always only get a fraction(if that!) correctly, and I love the suprise effect when I do finally read the conclusion.
     In addition, if you are picky about a writer's style and such like me, you will appreciate Graham's writing. I appreciate her writing, and it's all put together very well. The words flow nicely and it's enjoyable to read, but still intelligent and not "dumbed down." I definitely cannot wait to get my hands on the next of the Krewe of Hunters series! I would recommend this book to anyone who likes paranormal/supernatural and/or murder mysteries.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

     Of Mice and Men is a classic novel by John Steinbeck, the author of The Grapes of Wrath and East of Eden. The plot revolves around the two main characters, George Milton and Lennie Small. Lennie is a big guy, but he isn't all there. He forgets things that have happened in the past, but does remember certain conversations he has with George. George is a smaller man, and he is quite smart. He takes care of Lennie, also, even when Lennie gets in trouble.
     George and Lennie do farm jobs, laboring most of the day. They travel to California to work at a ranch, since they had to run away from their current one, in Weeds, because of an incident that Lennie had there.
     I don't want to give away too much of the story, so you're just going to have to read it! My thoughts on the book...I really liked it. I like the character of Lennie, even though most of my classmates did not. I really like Steinbeck's writing style, and it was easy to get into the book. I had loved East of Eden by him, so I had a feeling I would like this one too. The ending is kind of shocking, and it almost doesn't seem like an ending(the last sentence doesn't seem like it would be the ending). Anyways, it's a really good read, I definitely recommend it!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Unhallowed Ground by Heather Graham

     Unhallowed Ground is the seventh book in Heather Graham's Harrison Investigation series, and it is amazing, to say the least. Sarah McKinley is a historian who moves into her childhood dream home, a large, historic house in St. Augustine, Florida. While renovating the home, tons of human skeletons are discovered in the walls, all of them many years old.
     Caleb Anderson is a private investigator with Harrison Investigations who is in town to investigate the disappearance of a young girl who vanished a year ago. Another girl has also gone missing, and Caleb believes that the disappearances are connected.
     Sarah and Caleb team up to try to solve the mystery of the disappearances and find out what happened in Sarah's house years ago. They uncover stories of withcraft and murder, and try to stay safe in the process.
     I loved this book. The ending took me by suprise, it was a big twist, but I liked it. I have fallen for Heather Graham's writing. This is only the second book by her that I have read, but I love her style and how she develops her characters. It was never boring, and it didn't take me long to read because I never wanted to put it down! I definitely recommend this book to anyone who likes supernatural, kind of romance, mystery books; it was a great book.

Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger


  Her Fearful Symmetry is a book about twins, London, and the supernatural. Julia and Valentina Poole are twenty-year-old, identical twins that live in the suburbs of Chicago. Their mother, Edie, also has a twin, named Elspeth. While Edie lives in Illinois, Elspeth lives in London, England, where the two are originally from. The reader finds out that the elder pair of twins had a falling out earlier in their lives, and do not speak to each other anymore. Elspeth is unmarried, but has a relationship with Robert, who lives in the flat below her. Their flats are next to the Highgate Cemetary in London, an expansive cemetary where many famous and well-known people have been buried.
     Sadly, Elspeth dies of an illness, leaving Robert alone in the world. In her will, she leaves her flat in London to Julia and Valentina on two conditions: they live in it for a year before selling it and that their parents never step foot inside it. After much debate in the Poole household, Julia and Valentina are allowed to go. Eventually, they meet Robert, and Martin, the obsessive-compulsive who lives in the flat above them. The girls soon find out that Elspeth's spirit lives in the flat, and they begin to communicate with her. I won't give any more of the plot away yet if you want to read this, so stop reading now if you don't want to know what happens later!
     I loved this book, for the most part. Audrey Niffenegger is a beautiful writer, her words flow nicely and encapture the reader's attention. The supernatural part was enticing, and the cemetary sounded stunning. I did not really care for the ending though. SPOILER WARNING. At the end, Elspeth's spirit kills Valentina, because Valentina wants to escape her overbearing twin, and instead of later returning Valentina's spirit into her body, Elspeth takes her body instead. She claims that she tried, but could not return Valentina. Robert, who had loved Valentina after they got to know each other, left Elspeth(in Valentina's body), and he never returns to her. Valentina lives on as a spirit in the flat, where Julia decides to stay. Eventually, Valentina is able to escape the flat and roams the cemetary as a ghost, meeting new and old ghosts in the burial grounds. I had really liked Valentina as a character, and I think she deserved a much better fate than this. Julia meets a man, and they have a nice relationship. I did like the end for Martin, who overcame his OCD and reunited with his wife. Other than Valentina getting a terrible ending and Elspeth's betrayal, I really liked this book. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who likes supernatural books, or even just wants an interesting, well-written read.

Hush by Kate White

    Hush is a book about a woman who has some problems. Lake Warren's husband has left her and now wants full custody of her two children. She works at a fertility clinic alongside a handsome, flirtatious doctor, which isn't a first. After a dinner party with coworkers, Lake has a one-night-stand with this doctor, named Dr. Keaton. When she wakes up, she finds Keaton covered in blood with his throat slashed open. Since she doesn't want to show any reasons why she should not keep custody of her children, she flees the doctor's apartment and leaves the scene of the crime.
     Instead of telling the truth about the situation, she lies to the police every time they question her. Eventually, the killer comes after Lake. She does extensive research into the fertility clinic and what may have caused someone to want to kill the handsome doctor. The plot has many twists and unexpected outcomes. Throughout the whole book, Lake never tells the police the truth about what happened between her and Dr. Keaton before he was murdered.
     I did not like this book at all. Thankfully, I got the book as a bargain priced, past bestseller at Barnes & Noble. It caught my eye because the cover is interesting, and when I read the inside flap, it seemed like it could be a good, interesting read. I was wrong. First of all, Lake, the main character, frustrates the heck out of me. She caused all of her own troubles after the murder. She never confessed to being with Keaton that night, even though the police suspected her. I believe that she would have been much better off if she had just told the truth in the first place. She wasn't a very believable character, and I despised her. She made idiotic choices throughout the whole book. And in the end, she never gets in trouble for lying to the police and even ends up with a new guy. It was frustrating. While reading this book, I had actually wanted the police to find out about Lake's lies and for her to be punished. The plot dragged on throughout the book, and it included too many "what-if" statements in Lake's thoughts about what she suspected, and they were all over the place. It interrupted the flow of the writing, which I didn't think was honestly very good in the first place. Near the end of the book, White seemed to have realized that she needed to wrap it up, and sloppily wrote an ending that had nothing to do with what Lake had been trying to figure out through the entire book. Lake was an irrational character, and definitely acted very suspicious to her coworkers and everyone around her, including the police. I definitely would not have trusted her. I kept reading the book just to finish it; I really didn't enjoy any of the book at all. I would not recommend this book to anyone, not even for a cheap, summer/beach read.