Monthly Archives: July 2011

What to read this summer

When I had a job I usually spent at least a couple of hours a day reading.  Some of it was professional reading, but some of it was reading the latest books and keeping up with new authors.  If someone asked for a good book, I could always come up with at least two or more.  Now that I take care of cows, goats, and everything on the ranch is a work in progress it seems that there is less time to read.  However, reading is like breathing to me, so I still find some time no matter how busy to read.  These are a few of the books that I have been reading.

Hart, J. (2011). Iron House.  New York, NY:Thomas Dunne Publisher.

ISBN 978-0312380342   $25.99

Michael and Julian are orphan brothers left to fend for own lives at Iron House.  Michael is the strong one and Julian is the one picked on, beaten, and tormented.  Michael always takes care of Julian and he takes care of it when Julian kills one of the tormentors.  This requires Michael to leave, but Julian is adopted.  Many years later Michael has grown up as the enforcer for a powerful mob boss and Julian as the pampered son of a powerful Senator

When the mob boss dies not only Michael is in danger, but everyone he loves, his pregnant girlfriend, and his long forgotten family, his brother, is also in danger.   There are many different aspects of the story that Michael must dig through in order to discover the truth of why there are dead bodies in the Senator’s lake, why it seems that Julian has lost touch with reality, and why Iron House seems to be involved in all of it.

Hart has written an excellent action book.  This was the first book I have ever read by Hart, but I will certainly look for others by him.  I read an advance copy from the publisher and I do have one suggestion for John Hart, take it from someone who was there, in 1965 it was a Pontiac GTO not a Ford, so I hope that they will correct that before the book is released.

Marr, M. (2011).  Graveminder.  New York, NY: William Morrow.

ISBN 978-0061826870  $22.99

Years ago this town signed a contract with Mr. D to protect all of the inhabitants from disease until the age of eighty.   Mr. D controls the world of the dead under the funeral home.  Bryon Montgomery as the Undertaker is responsible for protecting the Graveminder, Rebecca Barrow.   Both Bryon and Rebecca came into their jobs through family.  Rebecca however was not born into the family, but was the stepdaughter of the son of the previous Graveminder, Maylene Barrow.    Her lack of blood inheritance to the job of Graveminder causes some difficulties with Maylene’s daughter and granddaughters.

If the dead are not taken care of with food and drink by the Graveminder after they die, then they will return and cause problems for the town.  The undertaker and the Graveminder must then contain the dead and conduct them to the world of Mr. D.  In an effort to give Bryon and Rebecca as much normal life as possible they were not told about the contract until the death of the previous undertaker and Graveminder.  This left them unprepared for the dead that have now returned and are killing people in town.

Melissa Marr is the author of the Wicked Lovely series and I was not as drawn into this world as I was the world of Wicked Lovely, but still, she is a good storyteller.  After so many vampire and magic books it is a different kind of magic story, original.

Cumming, C. (2011). Trinity Six.  New York, NY:St. Martin’s Press.

ISBN 978-0312675295   $24.99

Sam Gaddis is an academic who needs money for his daughter’s private school.  He believes that working on a book with a friend will take care of his money woes until that friend dies.  However, Gaddis becomes involved in looking at the notes, working on the book and finding a sixth spy for the Cambridge Five.  The Cambridge Five were young, collegiate men who were recruited to spy for Russia and successfully passed classified information from the British government for years.  Then Gaddis realizes that the people he is talking to, the people involved with the sixth spy story are being killed and his own life may also be in danger.

This book was a great read.  Cummings has just the right amount of dialogue, action, romance, description, and plot twists.  Gaddis is a bumbler, yet so earnest that you can’t help but cheer him on in his quest.   Even the people who are assigned to keep him from investigating the sixth spy can’t help but like him and help him with his search.  While some might say that it isn’t as involved as leCarre or Ludlum, that is exactly why I liked it so much, I could read it without taking notes to remember each character and where they fit into the story. It was just a good book for reading over a long weekend, thanks to the publisher for sharing an advance reading copy with me.