Book review: Fair Warning by Michael Connelly

Sunday, May 10, 2020 Permalink

We first met journalist Jack McEvoy in The Poet (published in 1996), one of the first books I read by Michael Connelly. Jack reappeared in The Scarecrow (2009) but he’s been kinda quiet ever since. (Though I know there was a crossover or two with Harry Bosch.)

I’ve actually got very vivid memories of reading The Poet (which is rare given I read a lot of books that are quite similar, AND it was a long time ago) so was keen to be reintroduced to Jack (all of these years later) in Connelly’s new release, Fair Warning.

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four-half-stars

Book review: Red Dirt Country by Fleur McDonald

Sunday, March 29, 2020 Permalink

I LOVE Fleur McDonald’s Dave Burrows series’. And yes, that apostrophe is meant to be there—I think—cos there are two of them. In case you’ve been living under a rock, McDonald is basically releasing books in two timeframes as if we’re in some weird Sliding Doors-like timewarp thingy.

In addition to an interrelated series set in the present, which features Burrows though he’s not always the headline act, McDonald takes us back in time a couple of decades (kicking off in the late 1990s) to Burrows’ early years as a cop.

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four-stars

Book review: Charlotte Pass by Lee Christine

Sunday, January 26, 2020 Permalink

Lee Christine has written several romantic suspense novels before venturing into crime fiction (which she does a great job at, I need to add), but because I’m new to Christine’s work and hadn’t heard of the setting of this novel, I kept thinking it was written by Charlotte Pass. So if I’ve slipped below and quoted Pass’s writing, I apologise in advance.

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four-stars

Book review: Starting from Now by Fleur McDonald

Sunday, November 3, 2019 Permalink

I’m really enjoying this (interrelated) series by Fleur McDonald. It really doesn’t matter where you enter because each of the books works easily as a standalone. Detective Dave Burrows is the link between books, but each introduces new characters whose stories are central to the plot.

There’s usually a smidge of romance and a crime or two and they’re all set in rural or regional Australia. Given her own farming background, McDonald effortlessly conveys a real sense of the lives our characters lead and she always manages to reflect on topical issues. Here she touches on both new technology being introduced to farming communities as well as the inadvertent impact protestors can have on the animals / communities / subject matter they believe they’re protecting.

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four-stars

Book review: Without a Doubt by Fleur McDonald

Friday, March 29, 2019 Permalink

My mother saw this book sitting on the bedside table a few weeks ago, “Oh a new Fleur McDonald!” she exclaimed. Her knowledge surprised me, though I don’t know why as she reads all of the books I receive and has the same level of interest. (My brother and I had to get our love of reading from somewhere!)

“It’s a young Dave Burrows one,” I told her. And she knew what I meant… we were stepping back in time… albeit to 1999, which seems like yesterday. But… apparently isn’t.

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four-stars

Book review: The Promised Land by Barry Maitland

Sunday, January 6, 2019 Permalink

I’ve talked again and again here (and in my most recent crime fiction / thriller reviews just last week) about the challenges of discovering a series part-way through. I prefer to start at the beginning. Cos I’ve heard it’s a very good place to start. You apparently begin with ABC and… oops #sorrynotsorry… couldn’t help myself.

Anyhoo, upon receiving this book (which I’d requested cos the plot sounded interesting) I discovered it was part of a series. And then I opened it to discover it was number 13!!! So I worried – how on earth would I have any idea who anyone was etc?

Thankfully it wasn’t at all a problem (it’s easily able to be read as a stand-alone) and I was intrigued enough by the series lead characters, our temporary cast and crew and the plot itself that I read it in one night.

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four-stars

Book review: Where the River Runs by Fleur McDonald

Friday, October 26, 2018 Permalink

I’ve been enjoying this series by Fleur McDonald – featuring Detective Dave Burrows (and a range of related characters). I also liked her last release, Fool’s Gold, which featured a young Dave – when he first started policing, giving us more insight into his history.

We’re back to the present now (well, mostly) and this is another great read – one which has a mystery to be solved in the background – but is more about family and relationships.

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four-stars

Book review: Murder Mile by Lynda La Plante

Wednesday, August 15, 2018 Permalink

I’ve been enjoying Lynda La Plante’s series featuring the young Jane Tennison. I loved the original English Prime Suspect TV series also but the somewhat sexist environment of the 1990s is nothing compared to the police service in the 1970s.

My main complaint regarding both earlier books in this series (Tennison & Good Friday) was that they featured two separate crimes – ultimately merging in some way and I felt they really didn’t need the complexity and we readers didn’t need the distraction.

I like to think my exacting opinions and informed literary reflections (*ahem*) made it through to La Plante because this book is centred around ONE CRIME. (And I loved it!)

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four-stars

Book review: Fool’s Gold by Fleur McDonald

Monday, March 19, 2018 Permalink

We take a step back in time – well a couple – in this latest novel by Australian author Fleur McDonald. We’ve met Detective Dave Burrows in her rural romantic suspense series (see my reviews of Suddenly One Summer and Sapphire Falls) and here we’re taken back to where it all began and he’s a newly appointed Detective and has moved with new wife, Melinda to rural WA, resplendent with dry heat, flies galore and brilliantly red soil.

The book also opens with a snippet from 1945 and a suicide that sets off a series of events for decades to come.

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four-stars