Friday, September 9, 2011

Alaskan Bad-Ass, Spunky Super-Sass, and Heartbreak Pass

I know.....I'm really stretching it with that title.

Three quickie reading updates....

1. Last Days Of Summer by Steve Kluger: Once again, Steve has put together a brilliant....let me repeat that--brilliant--story. The clever construction of the narrative--letters, announcements, newspaper clippings, etc--conveys a humorous, but also emotionally wrenching tale. It combines hilarious Jewish humor, baseball, and one of the most heart-breaking storylines I've ever read. In fact, I had a problem with the ending. I realize that the HEA-rule only applies to romance novels, but I'm not sure this ending was necessary, or even optimal, for this story. In spite of that, this book was another shining example of Steve's talent, and you're meshugana if you don't read it. Grade: A-

2. A Cold Day For Murder (Kate Shugak #1) by Dana Stabenow: After inhaling Stabenow's Liam Campbell series with the utmost glee, I decided to give her Kate Shugak series a go. It still has the fascinating Alaskan flavor, but this time we get a heroine to follow instead of a hero. I enjoyed this book, but it was definitely missing the spark of the Liam series. I was trying to figure out why....I think the main reason is that we get more emotionally invested in the characters, and the relationships, in the Liam series. This book is about the mystery, which is fine. But one of the things I adored about the Liam Campbell series is that the characters had a lot of depth, and those stories were just as important as the mystery to solve. I'm not sure if I'll continue with this series or not. Grade: B

3. Wait Until Midnight by Amanda Quick: I needed something light and sexy and comforting after I finished the heart-breaking ending of Last Days Of Summer. And this book by Amanda Quick is what I chose--it's one of my favorite re-reads. It has AQ's super-sassy-style heroine, who also just happens to be a writer for a sensational newspaper; it has the beta-but-masterful hero who is proper on one hand, and fiercely attracted to said spunky heroine on the other; it has an interesting mystery/storyline, wonderful supporting characters, and love scenes that manage to be sexy, adorable and satisfying all at the same time. AQ is my hero! AQ for president! AQ, AQ, AQ! (I'm a fan). Anyhow, it's a keeper. Grade: A

Happy Weekend Everyone!