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2016 50 Book Challenge - Page 195

post #2911 of 2914
24. The Man from Skibbereen Louis L'Amour

Crispin Mayo, an Irish immigrant from Skibbereen, County Cork, Ireland crosses the pond to try his hand working on the railroad in the Old West. He proceeds to have a number of scarcely believable wild and woolly adventures which turn him into a hero for the common man.

Entertaining, but I kept wondering if he arrived legally, and what Donald Trump would say if he didn't.
post #2912 of 2914
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
0. Asterix and the Missing Scroll
1. The Whisperer
2. The Vanished Ones
3. Quarterly Essay: Political Amnesia
4. From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant


5. The Lost Girls of Rome
The Lost Girls of RomeThe Lost Girls of Rome by Donato Carrisi

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


Marcus is an amnesiac member of a shadowy order of priests that investigate crimes gleaned from the confessions of evil-doers. The Church disapproves of them so he must conduct his activities in secret. Sandra Vega is a crime scene photographer mourning the recent death of her photojournalist husband David. David fell to his death in a deserted building in Rome. So why did his last message to her say that he was in Oslo? Sandra is driven to head to Rome and investigate, encountering Marcus in the process, as well as an Interpol agent who knows about David's final days.

The plot thickens with the near-death of a man who is found to be in possession of a momento taken by a serial killer years before; found by the victim's sister, Monica. Monica resists the temptation to take revenge and saves his life. Marcus takes an interest when a connection arises to a missing person case that he is investigating.

There are plenty of clever twists to Carrisi's plot, but I found the book unsatisfying overall. I rate his Mila Vasquez books more highly, because Mila is a more interesting and empathetic protagonist than the somewhat bland and predictable Sandra. The key theme of the plot, the penitenziere was just a whole lot too Dan Brown-y for my taste. Finally, I'm at a loss to understand why the publisher thought this title to be more appropriate than The Court of Souls, which is the direct translation of its original title, and far more apt - the revised title made the book more confusing in my mind - who were these lost girls supposed to be?


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post #2913 of 2914
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
0. Asterix and the Missing Scroll
1. The Whisperer
2. The Vanished Ones
3. Quarterly Essay: Political Amnesia
4. From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant
5. The Lost Girls of Rome


6. Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?
Can't We Talk about Something More Pleasant?Can't We Talk about Something More Pleasant? by Roz Chast

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I bought this book when my mother first moved into aged care, with the thought that it might help prepare for what was coming. Not too long after that, my mother-in-law died after a relatively short illness, so I discreetly put it to one side. I didn't really think it was the right book to be reading at that point.

It came to hand when I was idly looking for something to read, so I flopped on the couch and read it in a sitting. Roz Chast's story of her aged parents' reluctance to deal with their declining years and inability to be independent as their health fails is in turns, affectionate, heart-warming, sad and funny. Anybody who has lost a parent is likely to recognise some of the issues Roz goes through.

The book also puts a very bright spotlight on her relationship with her domineering mother; Chast doesn't bother to sugar-coat her family's story and she is willing to recount the good and bad with both of her parents, and with herself.

I have to admit that at times this book was laugh out loud funny. I meekly gave it to my wife to read when I was done; that night she kept me awake, snickering and giggling at Chast's account of death, just six months after losing her mother. So I guess it hits its mark, unerringly.


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post #2914 of 2914
25. The Concrete Blonde Michael Connelly

Bosh is on trial for excessive force in the shooting death of a serial killer. While the trial is going on, a copy cat killer emerges, and Bosh solves the additional case.

And he manages to keep his girlfriend throughout the whole book. Good stuff.
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