Sunday, February 5, 2012

Books I read in January

I was supposed to read tons of books this year. It already started out great with all the great books I received for Xmas. I started reading right away, but after that I pretty much stopped again. I'm not sure why. I love reading, but I often just don't get around to it or don't feel like it when I have the reading time.

I'm hoping to do better this month, as it's not much of a Book reading challenge if I only read one of two a month. We'll see. Below are reviews of the 2 books I did read so far:

Scream for me by Karen Rose
As a big fan of crime and suspense novels, I've read at least 10 of Karen Rose's novels, I think. I've enjoyed reading all of them and this last one was no exception. The plot is pretty much always the same; there's a sadistic serial killer on the loose who rapes and kills women or children or terrorizes entire families and one (or sometimes two) detectives or better yet, ex-detectives with a lot of baggage, who manage to catch the guy at the end of the book.

Even though the general plot is always similar, this doesn't mean these novels are predictable. Almost every story has some unexpected twists and turns, keeping the stories fresh and interesting to read. The novels are always very fast paced and I usually really like the main characters, meaning the detectives are always pretty cool but the victims are often way too whiny for my taste.

So what is Scream for me about? It's another story (not sure whether it's 3rd or 4th?) about detective Daniel Vartanian, who in the previous novel killed his brother Simon after finding out he was a serial killer and involved in molestation of many teen girls thirteen years ago. Now someone shows up dead in the same manner as thirteen years ago and Vartanian has to find out who's behind it and whether it's connected to his brother and everything that went down years go.

One of Simon's victims' twin sister Alex Tremaine ends up back in the town where everything happened thirteen years ago and of course she gets involved in it. She also ends up falling for Vartanian and the two of them find out they are great together. Original? Not really, but it makes for a very fun read. So if you are looking for a novel to read on the train or on a lazy Sunday afternoon, Scream for me is a great choice.

The Woods by Harlan Coben
I could have given this book the same introduction as the previous one, with the exception being that I think that Harlan Coben is a better writer than Karen Rose is and his stories are a little more original. Or better said, not all Coben's novels have a similar plot. Having said that, it doesn't mean the Woods diverts much from the typical crime novel.

Twenty years ago four teenagers were murdered in the woods, now it turns out they might not all be dead and things went down a little different than people thought at the time. One of the teens that they never found was Paul Copeland's sister, and of course he is the detective who now has to solve the case. Throw in a little chemistry between Paul and a school teacher, who are of course equally troubled and had given up on love, and you have yourself a novel.

Ok I'm not really doing it justice, because it is well written, fast paced and full of the usual twists and turns. However, after having read hundreds of suspense novels it's hard to come up with new stuff to say about it. What I can say if that I really enjoyed reading it, and it's yet another novel to add to your lazy Sunday afternoon reading pile.