Monday, August 31, 2009

Jeff Carlson - Plague Year

The nanotechnology was designed to fight cancer. Instead, it evolved into the machine plague, killing nearly five billion people and changing life on Earth forever.

The nanotech has one weakness: it self-destructs at altitudes above ten thousand feet. Those few who've managed to escape struggle to stay alive on the highest mountains, but time is running out. There is famine and war, and the environment is crashing worldwide. Humanity's last hope lies with a top nanotech researcher aboard the International Space Station-and with a small group of survivors in California who risk a daring journey below the death line.


As much as I tried the book felt like a flatliner. Having read a tad more than the first third I was hoping for some more sci-fi details and much more excitement. Instead I got the story of some survivors who live above the surviving altitude of nanoprobes which have turned badly against humanity, eating them from the inside out.
A few of the survivors make their way to another camp where they are obviously needed, as a barely surviving visitor told them. He promised them food and shelter and most of all safety.
I never read to the point if he spoke the truth or not.

Sounds interesting but believe me, the story develops flatter than a pancake.

Plague Year is the first in a series of three (Plague War, Jul. 2008, and Plague Zone, Nov. 2009).

Visit Jeff Carlson.

Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Ace; First Printing edition (July 31, 2007)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 044101514X
ISBN-13: 978-0441015146

Friday, August 28, 2009

Barbara Delisnky - Finger Prints

Once upon a time she was Robyn Hart, a journalist who saw too much and wasn't afraid to expose it. But that courage nearly cost Robyn her life. Under the protection of the Witness Relocation program, she now has a new identity -- Carly -- and a new job. But the terror of the past still lingers, and Carly lives in fear that her enemies will find her.

Though she tries to wall herself off from the world, one determined man breaks through her defenses -- successful young attorney Ryan Cornell. And though she yearns to give him her heart, Carly doesn’t know if she can. While loving him offers a happiness she thought she'd forever lost, trusting him could cost her everything.


Carly Quinn left her old life months ago to finally enter the witness relocation program 4 months ago. Having survived an attack on her life in a dark alley she fears for her life and lives a secluded life as a teacher when attractive lawyer Ryan Cornell moves into her building. She desperately tries to keep to herself but falls for his charm and persistence to come into her life. Not without the reassurance of her friend and person responsible for her protection, Sam Loomis, she gives in to Ryan and their relationship grows.

Things become difficult for Carly when the man she brought to jail files motion for a new trial and she might be called back to the witness stand. On top of that Gary Culbert seems quite assured he might be acquitted.
Then there is Sheila, whom Carly got to know before the huge trial. Sheila was responsible for Carly's security and they developed a deep friendship. But since Sheila moved to Cambridge she seems distracted to the dismay of her new boss Sam. Loomis.

Ultimately Carly's is going to be betrayed by a person she loves.


Finger Prints was first published in 1984 and seems to be one of Delinsky's earlier novels. I couldn't quite figure out if or under what title the book was published before it got named Finger Prints. Today the author seems to no longer like to be associated with her pseudonyms Bonnie Drake or Billie Douglass. Fact is some of her older novels written under her pseudonyms are republished under the name Barbara Delinsky.

Coming to the book I believe it flopped. The writing style is very fluent and easy to read but the plot itself was too much romance, too little suspense. It was pretty clear in which direction the book is going from the beginning and besides all of the romance I was just waiting for something suspenseful to happen.
I'm not excited about the book but it wasn't too bad either. Just reading time I could have spent on something more interesting or a book whose cover description matches the plot.

Visit Barbara Delisnky.

Mass Market Paperback: 496 pages
Publisher: HarperTorch (April 1, 1992)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0061041807
ISBN-13: 978-0061041808

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Thomas O'Callaghan - The Screaming Room

John Driscoll has laid the ghosts of his past to rest. He's ready to start over - both personally and as a NYPD homicide commander. But it seems that a serial killer has other plans for Driscoll.

The victims' bodies are found, brutally mutilated and carefully arranged for the world to see - grotesque visions to all except for the depraved killer, who considers them masterpieces. These blood rituals spell out a message to Driscoll.
And they are just the beginning...

Driscoll's investigation will lead him down the darkest of journeys, toward an evil beyond his worst nightmares. In a hellish landscape conceived by the all-too-clever mind of a twisted schemer, Driscoll must play a killer's deadly game. It's up to him to save his city - or die trying.


The teenagers Cassie & Angus have been abused and tortured their whole life. Now that they are finally free, Angus clever mind knows how to trick the likes that made them suffer so much into their trap to take a gruesome revenge. What remains is a mutilated and scalped body.

While Lieutenant John Driscoll takes charge of the investigations of several murders, a huge pharmacy mogul has his own interest to get to the two teenagers first. His agenda is clear: they need to die for they hold secrets that should never be revealed.


As nice as the books description sounds, it fails to deliver on a large scale. I wasn't particular impressed with the authors choice of wording but could have gone past that if the plot hadn't been such a boring experience.
Besides the characters own packages, a wife that was just buried and Driscoll's working colleague and love Margaret's struggles with the past it felt like a huge jigsaw where the pieces have been cut very badly.

Visit Thomas O'Callaghan.

Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Pinnacle (2007)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0739484303
ISBN-13: 978-0739484302

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Lisa Gardner - The Neighbor

It was a case to spark a media feeding frenzy - a young mother, blond and pretty, disappears without a trace from her South Boston home, leaving behind her four-year-old daughter as the only witness and her handsome, secretive husband as the prime suspect.
But from the moment Detective Sergeant D. D. Warren arrives at the Joneses' snug little bungalow, she senses something off about the picture of wholesome normality the couple worked so hard to create. On the surface, Jason and Sandra Jones were like any other hardworking young couple raising a four-year-old child. But it is just under the surface that things grew murkier.
With the clock ticking on the life of a missing woman and the media firestorm building, Jason Jones seems more intent on destroying evidence and isolating his daughter than on searching for his "beloved" wife.


Sandra and Jason Jones have been married for almost 4 years, raising her four-year-old daughter Ree. Their marriage isn't what the average person would assume as normal but besides that they are both devoted to their child's safety.
One night Jason returns from work and finds his wife missing and his daughter sleeping in her bed. Police soon considers him their main suspect when a registered sex offender from the neighborhood enters the scene, a secret affair of Sandra's turns up and her estranged father, a judge from Georgia, claims rights on his granddaughter.
And what's wrong with Jason who's behavior and gestures are as cold as ice, calculating and only warm towards his daughter.


At first I didn't really knew what to think about Gardner's newest novel until the suspense got me. The plot is slightly tied to the previous novel Say Goodbye and the "Burgerman" Gardner opens door after door after door with suspects, giving us a good glimpse of the characters and what they were thinking. I didn't really guess who's involved in Sandra's disappearance up until the almost the end.

I really enjoyed Sandra's flashbacks from the past, how she grew up with abusing parents, met Jason and discovered his terrible secret. The revelation in the end is shockingly twisted and rewarding with a conclusion that takes your breath away. It all fits and I for once closed a book I couldn't put away.

Visit Lisa Gardner.

Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Bantam; First Edition first Printing edition (June 16, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0553807234
ISBN-13: 978-0553807233

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Jilliane Hoffman - Plea of Insanity

The prosecutor -- Julia Vacanti. Young and ambitious, and facing a case that could launch her career.
The defendant -- David Marquette. A successful Miami surgeon and devoted family man. The victims -- Marquette's own wife and three small children.
The plea -- Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity.

The perfect father and model husband, David Marquette seemingly just snapped. His experienced defense team claims paranoid delusions caused by schizophrenia drove him to slaughter his entire family.

But the state suspects Marquette's insanity defense is being fabricated to disguise murders that were cold blooded and calculated. Worse, Julia believes Marquette could be responsible for a string of unsolved, brutal homicides. Could he be one of the most prolific and elusive serial killers in the country's history? To bring him to justice, Julia must embark on a terrifying personal journey back into her own past-something she has struggled to forget for fifteen years. And this will lead her to confront a future so chilling, she's not sure she will ever be able to face it...


Assistant State Attorney Julia Vacanti is appointed to her very first big case:
David Marquette has to stand trial for the gruesome murder of his wife and three children. His defense pleas he's not guilty by reason of insanity on the basis of his family history and his brother being schizophrenic.
In the midst of the trial Julia learns that her brother, whose whereabouts haven't been spoke of since years, is still alive and locked away in a high security facility for the murder of his parents while Julia was on a sleep over. He's treated as being schizophrenic.
Rekindling with her brother Julia begins to understand the difficulties of being schizophrenic and develops doubts in her own allegation against Marquette and that in fact might not be guilty.


Plea of Insanity was not what I'd expected after I've read lots of raving reviews about Hoffman's previous books.
The plot idea itself is not that bad but not really unique either. It has been there in several novels and movies and unfortunately better done as well.
I don't want to call the book a legal thriller although it was meant to be just that and more.

In the end it was entertaining but probably not enough to make me a fan.

Visit Jilliane Hoffman.

Hardcover: 432 pages
Publisher: Vanguard Press; 1 edition (April 10, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1593155077
ISBN-13: 978-1593155070

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Warren Fahy - Fragment

In this powerhouse of suspense—as brilliantly imagined as Jurassic Park and The Ruins—scientists have made a startling discovery: a fragment of a lost continent, an island with an ecosystem unlike any they've seen before... an ecosystem that could topple ours like a house of cards.

The time is now. The place is the Trident, a long-range research vessel hired by the reality TV show Sealife. Aboard is a cast of ambitious young scientists. With a director dying for drama, tiny Henders Island might be just what the show needs. Until the first scientist sets foot on Henders— -- and the ultimate test of survival begins...

For when they reach the island’s shores, scientists are utterly unprepared for what they find -- —creatures unlike any ever recorded in natural history. This is not a lost world frozen in time, an island of mutants, or a lab where science has gone mad: this is the Earth as it might have looked after evolving on a separate path for half a billion years.

Soon the scientists will stumble on something more shocking than anything humanity has ever encountered: because among the terrors of Henders Island, one life form defies any scientific theory— -- and must be saved at any cost.


The research vessel Trident receives an emergency transmission from a 30-foot sailboat leading them to a remote island that hasn't been touched by humans before: Henders Island, where plants and animals together developed unaffected by human traces or today's flora and fauna.
Upon entering the island a team of scientists and cameramen suffers terrible losses during a live feed to national TV, leaving only two lone survivors: Botanist Nell Duckworth and cameraman Zero Monroe.
The area around the island is quarantined for further investigations and research and Nell is put in charge of the on-site observation team abroad of a mobile lab. But soon the astonished scientists discover that the island eco-system works as vicious as it can be with never before seen lifeforms not only attacking other lifeforms but also capable of finding their ways through metals and acrylics.
Unfortunately things get out of hands when the government recognizes how much of a threat the island inhabitants can get if it ever gets to the mainland.


Fragment has this jurassic park feeling times four, spiked with difficult to comprehend creations of animals and plants. Luckily it also offers drawings of the animals at the same time which I thought is a wonderful addition to the book.
At times it gets a bit out of hands with unnecessary dialog between scientists that don't talk about the novels topic itself but luckily the reader stays undisturbed engulfed with the island terror after those two very distracting off-topics are done.
In hindsight of the prologue and its sense the book offers a very disturbing sight on what can happen and what has been happening for a long time to eco-systems if interrupted and that the chance of an ultimate extinction of the world we know today isn't as far fetched as one might think.

I believe this is a great effort by a new author one might keep an eye on.

Visit Warren Fahy.

Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press (June 16, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0553807536
ISBN-13: 978-0553807530

Friday, August 14, 2009

Stephenie Meyer - New Moon (Twilight series, Book 2)

Bella celebrates her birthday with her boyfriend Edward and his family, a unique clan of vampires that has sworn off human blood. But the celebration abruptly ends when the teen accidentally cuts her arm on broken glass. The sight and smell of her blood trickling away forces the Cullen family to retreat lest they be tempted to make a meal of her. After all is mended, Edward, realizing the danger that he and his family create for Bella, sees no option for her safety but to leave. Mourning his departure, she slips into a downward spiral of depression that penetrates and lingers over her every step.


It is a paper cut on Bella's finger that drives the Cullens' out of Forks, promising to never to return. Bella never asked for them to leave, she didn't want them out of her life but she is left with a shattered world, nothing to do with herself and not enough will to live to move on with her life. So the months fly by until Bella remembers her old friend Jacob Black and their relationship intensifies.
For him she has always been his love, for her he is the brother that takes her around doing dangerous stuff. But Jacob has another secret soon to reveal. He's a werewolf trying to protect the people from a vampire that lately left tracks and dead people all around Forks and the reservoir. The vampire of course, is Victoria who seeks revenge on Bella for James' death.
In an attempt to feel something Bella tries herself in cliff diving which almost costs her life if it weren't for Jacob who once again saved her life.
The friendship between the two is put to the test when the frantic Alice, Edward's sister who saw Bella's jump in a vision, arrives to check on Charlie because she thought Bella died. But she's not the only one that thought the same.


I've been wondering why I kept reading. There isn't really much happening in this continuation of the Twilight novel. It certainly aren't the characters. Each one of them is undeveloped and Bella's the most co-dependent person one can imagine. Her clumsiness, in the beginning kinda funny, hasn't changed and has become quite old. She still wants to become a vampire and it looks like that's her only goal.
I could tear at my hair for Bella's stupidity and have given up to explain why I in the end liked the book. The answer is pretty clear: I don't know.

It is quite irking that Meyer so easily describes depression like it is the normal process of heartsickness. It is not, plus, suicidal behavior might be a bit thoughtless to dish to young teenagers. It certainly needs explanation for some young readers.

Visit Stephenie Meyer.
Review Twilight (Twilight series, Book 1).

Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 576 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown Young Readers; MTI edition (September 15, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0316075639
ISBN-13: 978-0316075633

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Jeremy Robinson - Raising The Past

A mammoth, flash frozen in solid ice 10,000 years ago is brought to the surface by a team of scientists. An act of sabotage frees the giant from its icy tomb and reveals the secret held inside.

The body of an ancient woman, cloaked in furs, slides out of the mammoth's belly. But it is not the woman that holds the team's is the object she is clutching...a device created by an advanced civilization.
The device is accidentally activated, summoning forces who seek its destruction. It is the key to mankind's salvation and freedom from the men behind the curtain, pulling the strings and leading humanity towards destruction.


A mammoth is found deep in the Canadian Arctic, completely preserved for the last 10.0000 year. Eddy Moore is the expert in paleontology who is hired and the one to be trusted to retrieve an object this size but while the mammoth is lifted the discoverer and one who pays for the whole operation secretly starts the thawing process in the hopes to retrieve mammoth DNA. What they discover is even more amazing. Out of the belly of the mammoth falls an ancient woman holding a device in her hands that very much looks like Star Trek equipment, especially when it opens and sends out a red light.
Up in space a small black orb makes it way to fulfill what it was built for: Keeping the device from being used. It triggers a huge snow wall to cover the dig site under a thick, icy layer of snow, leaving only a few survivors that desperately need to try to find their way back to civilization.
The crew of 7 gathers what they can find and make their way back in snow mobiles when they are approached by 5 men, claiming to be Inuits who have come to help them. The crew doesn't trust them and at night they make a run for it.

What follows is a chase through the arctic winds that causes more human losses, especially after the device lets of a message for humanity. They are holding the key to a secret citadel that hold a beacon to call for help because the men following the crew are out to kill them. A race from outer space that wants to make sure that Earth is going to be destroyed.

Things get difficult, and whom is ultimately to believe ? The evil race called Ferox, who want to make sure Earth destroys itself one day or the good-natured Aeros, who will come to safe humanity and cleanse Earth from Ferox corruption ?


Raising The Past is an arctic adventure that promises a lot of excitement. The promise is kept up until the book slips into a sci-fi war between humans and two alien races. My cup of tea emptied there.
The whole citadel part was just too unimaginable and certainly lacked a more detailed description and plot development.

An ok beach read for the soft sci-fi fan.

Visit Jeremy Robinson.
Jeremy Robinson on YouTube. (includes book trailers)

Paperback: 308 pages
Publisher: Breakneck Books (September 15, 2006)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0978655117
ISBN-13: 978-0978655112

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Michael Baden and Linda Kenney Baden - Skeleton Justice

The case begins with New York City on high alert for a most bizarre serial killer - a strange kind of thief who stalks his victims for the purpose of extracting a vial of blood, earning him the tabloid nickname the Vampire. As the attacks become more and more vicious and escalate to torture and then to murder, Jake and Manny begin too suspect there is a connection between the killer's seemingly random victims.
But what is the link between the Vampire and a case Manny's been working for a kid, whose high school prank-gone-wrong has earned him the moniker the Preppy Terrorist and an FBI electronic bracelet ?
Jake's careful forensic examinations, Manny's courtroom tenaciousness, and an unusual clue suggesting that a high-ranking politician has risen from the grave take the pair from the bowels of the morgue to the world of international intrigue.
At the heart of this story is a tragic tale of corruption interlaced with cover-ups, conspiracies, death squads, and dictators who committed crimes that to this day go unpunished.


New York has a new killer on the loose who ether induces his random victims unconsciousness. At first he left them unharmed, drawing just a vial of blood from them but lately his attacks have become more vicious and he's left his victims tortured and dead.
Deputy chief medical examiner Jake Rosen seems to be drawn to case, eager to find the connection between the victims.

Manny Manfreda is a civil rights lawyer. Her newest case involves a teenager who's taken into custody after a makeshift bomb exploded under a mail box and wounded a passing by federal judge. With Jakes brother Sam's help Manny tries to uncover why only her client was taken into custody but not the boys who were with him.
When the boy later vanishes, witnesses Sam's just talked to are found dead and a strange connection between the Vampire and the bombing is found, it soon becomes clear that someone wanted Jake and Manny on the cases for a reason.


I'd like to give this novel the name of the biggest disappointment of the year. I just can't find anything positive in this suspense novel.
I'd expected so much more and got what most would consider a cozy novel, lacking the forensic science for the most part. Not that it isn't mentioned but wouldn't you expect from a forensic expert at least some interesting details ? Fact is, the forensic pathologist in this novel doesn't really do much of the work and when he does, you learn about it in a short sentence.
The characters are just sad, not even funny. There is not much development during the novel and I didn't really care for them at all. Nor did I think the protagonists were very clever but mere average investigators.
Skeleton Justice is the second (Remains Silent being the first) installment in a series I won't follow up with. It really must be nice to have friends like Cornwell, Rule and Reichs in the business. They'll recommend you, probably without having read what you've written.


Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Knopf (June 16, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1400044324
ISBN-13: 978-1400044320

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Sandra Glahn - Informed Consent

Dr. Jeremy Cramer is a young doctor on the verge of a cutting-edge medical discovery. But his research is derailed when Cramer's son is infected with a rare fatal disease. Now as he races against time to save his child's life, Cramer will make a decision that could shatter his career.


Jeremy Cramer is a third year resident in a hospital. His dream is to one day be able to unravel the secret why the chances of adult drowning victims are so small compared to children under the same circumstances. His drive is a personal matter because he lost his father when he was a small boy.
One day however, while working the emergency room, he accidentally bumps into a nurse that was just about to pick up a used needle that fell to the floor. She pricks herself and soon fells sick with HIV that progresses fast into AIDS and a constant stay in the hospital.
Ridden by shame and self-reproach he agrees to shift his research into the AIDS research to secure funding for what he thinks might be a possible treatment for both HIV and the drowning patients.
His success however is soon overshadowed by another accident he's blaming himself for:
His young son Jak wants to see the lab his father is working in and in a moment of distraction Jeremy doesn't look at what the boy does and the next moment he's got a used glove he took out of the contaminated bin in his mouth. Weeks go by with the boy being under close watch until he falls terribly ill.


Informed Consent feels like a window that opens into a families daily life, letting the reader watch through their daily struggle, doubts, trust issues, love, self-reproach, hospital life and a lot more. With so much going on it is difficult to just keep the thoughts to the main plot.
I enjoyed the book very much and later thought a lot about the bigger issues mentioned in the book.

Sadly Jeremy's discovery is nothing more than fiction from an author who's lost friends with AIDS herself. But the idea is wonderful. She easily shatters the stereotype belief that HIV patients come from a certain social background, prolonging life and prolonging death.

Overall a fantastic fiction novel very thought provoking if the reader dares to peek behind the curtain.

Visit Sandra Glahn.

Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook; New edition (August 1, 2007)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1589191099
ISBN-13: 978-1589191099

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

James Patterson and Maxine Paetro - Swimsuit

A breathtakingly beautiful supermodel disappears from a swimsuit photo shoot at the most glamorous hotel in Hawaii. Only hours after Kim McDaniels goes missing, her parents receive a terrifying phone call. Fearing the worst they board the first flight to Maui and begin the hunt for their daughter.
Ex-cop Ben Hawkins, now a reporter for the L. A. Tomes, gets the McDaniels assignment. The ineptitude of the local police force defies belief. - Ben has to start his own investigation for Kim McDaniels to have a prayer. And for Ben to have the story of a lifetime.
All the while, a killer sets the stage for his next production. His audience expects the best - and they won't be disappointed.


Young model Kim McDaniels vanishes on Maui. Their worried parents Barbara & Levon arrive frantically searching for their girl because someone, the killer, called them.
Meanwhile a secret Alliance enjoyed the suffering and death of Kim on their desktop screens. But the Alliance has money and they want more, they want the ultimate surprise from their contract killer and master in disguise Henri Benoit.
While Henri plans his next stage with Kim's parents as the main attraction, Benjamin Hawkins, novelist, ex-cop gone crime write for the L. A. Times offers his help to this friendly pair just to see their lives slipping away under his fingers.
Sadly he returns to to L. A. but has the strong feeling, the case for him, at least, is not closed yet.


The book sort of has two halves with an exceptional first half and an unfortunately not so exciting half which ending was just boring and didn't keep the standard one was expecting.
Sensible readers should be warned that certain killing scenes are violent and shockingly detailed to Patterson readers.
Overall I liked it for the first half but didn't really care for the second part and it's conclusion which missed any excitement and was a huge bore to me. It was readers guilt that made me finish the book.

(One might guess that the first part was mainly written by Paetro, who's been largely involved co-writing the last five novels in the Women's Murder Club series).

Visit James Patterson.
Visit Maxine Paetro.

Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (June 29, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0316018775
ISBN-13: 978-0316018777

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Barbara Bentley - A Dance With the Devil: A True Story of Marriage to a Psychopath

Her marriage to retired Navy admiral John Perry seemed almost too good to be true. Because it was…

At the start of her relationship with the intelligent and worldly John Perry, Barbara Bentley couldn't believe her luck—so when things didn't add up, she struggled to ignore her doubts. She kept trying to put the pieces together—unaware that some of them were simply missing. Even as he drained her credit, dodged her questions, manipulated her and misled her, she stayed with him, suppressing her growing suspicions. Ultimately he would try to kill her, proving himself not a protector and provider, but a predator.

This is Barbara’s courageous, compelling story, in her own words—of the slow, choking darkness that fell after the honeymoon was over, what it took to finally drive her to escape and start her life anew, and her tireless efforts to protect other women and help them learn from her example.


Barbara Bentley met John Perry at a double date dinner party where he impressed with stories about the World War 2, Vietnam, his status as Navy rear admiral, multiple medals and especially the Medal of Honor.
Attracted to the worldly man she soon falls for him and his spoiling presents and agrees to marry him even after he abused her credit card. From the beginning he claimed a huge family that he kept hidden from his wife and who would consider him as the black sheep and her as a gold digger that wants to get to the family fortune.
What follows are years of him spending money they don't own, maxing out credit cards, disappointments and trust issues but Barbara enjoys the happy side as well. Being an admirals wife opens doors she'd never thought would open for her, it gave her status as well.
But the sore spot for their bad financial situation nags at her and every time she stresses this point with her husband he successfully uses his medical condition to soothe her.
Trust finally erodes when the FBI turns up at their door and Barbara decides to investigate her husband and his stories. Discovering his web of lies she brings herself into the dangerous situation of him almost killing her through suffocation with ether.

What follows are months of discovering the man she'd lived with for years and the fight to change the California divorce law that victimized surviving victims even more.


A clear plus is the author's timeline in telling the story. She doesn't reveal what happened in the end at the beginning of the book which keeps the book very interesting although the reader most certainly knew that in the end the protagoist barely survives an attempted murder.

Bentley wrote her book in the memories she had from this time so she doesn't hold back the mistakes she did. She wanted him to be happy so that he wouldn't leave her and she'd stay happy.
In the end the book is a sad example of a women that discovered her voice after she endured a life along the side of a psychopath that spared her life longer than expected.
It is difficult to comprehend a women accepting visible lies, not getting suspicious. I didn't get it and couldn't understand the feeble attempt to justify why she did what she did. She often enough told me how proud she was to be the admirals wife, which certainly made her look the other way.

I had the strong feeling the author isn't over what happened to her yet. There seem to be a lot of questions she should ask herself and maybe someone who can help her in finding answers. Maybe she did that but she didn't tell the reader.

In the end I felt for her but I'm not as wowed by the book as other readers.

Visit Barbara Bentley.

Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Berkley Trade (November 4, 2008)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0425221180
ISBN-13: 978-0425221181