Tag Archives: Fiction

Review of “The Fallen”

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Book Reviews – “The Fallen” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Eric Van Lustbader (https://www.ericvanlustbader.com). Mr. Lustbader has published more than 45 novels. This is the second in his “The Testament” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set in Europe with the primary character being Braverman “Bravo” Shaw, head of the Gnostic Observatine sect.

A series of events take place that seem to herald the End of Days. A man finds the long hidden Testament of Lucifer in a remote Lebanese cave. Shaw, along with his blind sister, Emma, and Fra Leoni begin the chase to retrieve the Testament and stop the End of Days.

I enjoyed the nearly 11 hours I spent reading this 352 page Paranormal Thriller. I have been a long time fan of Van Lustbader, but this novel seemed to fall short for me. It felt a little “raw’, in the need of “polishing”. While the second in a series, this novel stood well on its own. The cover art is OK, but doesn’t really give a feel for the story. I give this novel a 3.8 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

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Review of “The Rest is Silence”

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Book Reviews – “The Rest is Silence” ebook was published in 2014 and was written by James R. Benn (http://www.jamesrbenn.com). Mr. Benn has published twelve novels, all in the “Billy Boyle WWII Mystery” series. This is the 9th novel in that series.

I purchased this novel from the Barnes & Noble (Nook) bookstore. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in World War II England, just weeks before the Allied invasion of France. US Army Captain Billy Boyle is the primary character.

An unidentified corpse washes ashore on a beach being used for secret rehearsals of the D-Day invasion. Boyle is sent to find out who the dead man is, more importantly to determine that he was not a German spy observing the secret activities.

Boyle and his friend and associate Lieutenant Piotr “Kaz” Kazimierz stay at the estate of an old friend of Kazimierz which is located near where the body was found. The family they are staying with seem to have their own secrets and intrigues going on.

On top of their investigation hundreds of US military are killed during a German attack white they are practicing for the invasion. “Operation Tiger” (depicted in the story) was a real life disaster for the Allies while preparing for D-Day.

I thoroughly enjoyed the nearly 10 hours I spent reading this 336 page World War II Mystery. I have read all nine of the novels up to this point and I have thoroughly enjoyed them all. I like the characters that author Benn has created in Boyle and Kazimierz. I also like how he weaves real history into his stories. The cover art is a good selection. I give this novel a 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “Hong Kong Black”

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Book Reviews – “Hong Kong Black” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Alex Ryan. This is Mr. Ryan’s second novel and the second in his “Nick Foley” thrillers.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set in today’s China. The primary character is former US Navy SEAL Nick Foley.

Foley has tried to leave behind his Special Operations experiences and now works for a non-profit working to bring clean drinking water to rural Chinese. He has already been drawn into one operation where he helped to save China from a bio-terrorist attack. Now he is being drawn in again.

A Chinese working undercover for the CIA has disappeared and Foley is asked to look into it. What should have been a simple task draws him and those closest to him into another life-and-death situation and a conspiracy of global proportions.

As Foley is investigating this disappearance, his beautiful and close friend Dr. Dazhong “Dash” Chen of the CDC is involved in identifying what is behind a series of mutilated bodies that are washing ashore. Before long their investigations merge into a more serious problem than either would have conceived possible.

I enjoyed the 7.5 hours I spent with this 362 page spy thriller. Event hough this is the second in the series, it read well on its own. I liked the characters and the plot. It is a bit of a different take, US operatives working closely with Chinese operatives to save the day. The cover art is OK, but doesn’t relate much to the story. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Trailer for “Red Sparrow”

Trailers – This new thriller is scheduled to be out in March of 2018. The synopsis (per IMDB):

Ballerina Dominika Egorova is recruited to ‘Sparrow School’ a Russian intelligence service where she is forced to use her body as a weapon. But her first mission, targeting a CIA agent, threatens to unravel the security of both nations.

This looks like another spy thriller that has possibilities.

Review of “Burntown”

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Book Reviews – “Burntown” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Jennifer McMahon (http://jennifer-mcmahon.com). Ms. McMahon has published eight novels.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in a New England college town. The primary character is young Eva “Necco” Sandeski.

Sandeski and her mother have been living on the streets hiding from “Snake Eyes”. At first Sandeski didn’t believe in Snake Eyes, but now she knows that he is real and after her. If he finds her she will die like the others.

Her father was a college professor and inventor. Today we would call him a “Maker”. He had plans for a novel device, supposedly designed by Thomas Edison, which would allow communication with the dead. Once he built the device, he found that it worked, but he heard from more than just the one he wanted to hear from.

That device led to his death. Sandeski and her mother ran away from their home. Sandeski lost memories of the tragic day due to a bump on the head or the anguish of the event. Now her mother is gone too. The police think Sandeski is responsible for a murder, and Snake Eyes is on her trail. She is running for her life.

Drawn in to this is 17 year old Theo Sweeny. She has the reputation as a squeaky clean young lady, but she has been convinced to sell drugs at her High School by the college age woman she has become romantically involved with. But then she looses the drug money she had collected and the dealer is after her. Sweeny and Sandeski become allies through unexpected circumstances.

I enjoyed the 7.5 hours I spent reading this 304 page Mystery Thriller. I would also say that this is a Young Adult novel at least in part due to the age of the girls, but it deals with serious topics. While not quite as intense, this novel felt a bit like I was reading a Dean Koontz novel. I liked the characters involved with the story. They are a mix that you would not normally think of as being allied together. The cover art is OK as it depicts the shack where Sandeski lived for a time beneath the bridge while she hid out with her mother. A lot does happen there in the story. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “Countdown to Terror”

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Book Reviews – “Countdown to Terror” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by David Holman. Mr. Holman has published two novels.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in 1969 England. At the height of the cold war, England, the US and Russia are all actively pursuing space programs.

A former German, now working with the British space program is seen attacked and killed. This involves the prime character of the novel, former MI5 officer Alex Swan. Swan is now with the secretive Ministry of Defense Services Investigations Department. Swan, along with ex-detective colleague Arthur Gable, delves into the murder and soon finds themselves involved with a much larger issue.

There are more deaths and Swan soon discovers that there is a clandestine organization that evolved out of Nazi Germany actively at work trying to sabotage space efforts by the British, US and Russians. Swan works hard to identify those involved and stop them from bringing catastrophic results on the space efforts.

I enjoyed the nearly 9 hours I spent reading this 318 page espionage thriller. While there was only a little action, I enjoyed the intrigue and plot twists. Given that the plot involves the space programs the cover are is appropriate. I give this novel a 4.4 (rounded down to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Trailer for “Tomb Raider”

Trailers – This reboot of the Tomb Raider movies looks interesting, though I think that I like Angelina Jolie instead of Alecia Vikander as Laura Croft. That may change after the movie is out. It is hard to really tell from a 2:13 trailer.

This new Tomb Raider movie is supposed to be more in line with the rebooted game released in 2013. We have a while to wait as it isn’t currently scheduled for release until March 16, 2018. From this brief look the movie has real possibilities.

Review of “Operation Armageddon”

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Book Reviews – “Operation Armageddon” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Richard Freeman. Mr. Freeman has published 17 books.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story takes place in 1943 Europe. The primary characters are Royal Navy Lieutenant Commander James Bosanquet and French resistance leader Marie Le Faucheur.

The war is beginning to turn for the Nazis. Their army at Stalingrad is in danger of being surrounded and the Allies will soon invade North Africa. Hitler himself comes up with a daring plan to strike a blow against the Allies with a submarine loaded with 250 tons of explosives.

Faucheur in Cap d’Enfer, France comes across information about the U-boat in her job at the German naval base. Bosanquet, working for British Naval Intelligence, is dropped behind German lines to take action against the threat. Working together with Faucheur, Bosanquet comes up with a plan to at least delay the sailing of the U-boat.

As with most plans, things fall apart quickly and their attack is thwarted with many injured or killed. The U-boat sails and it becomes a race to see if it can be found and stopped before the Germans can strike their ‘Armageddon’ blow against the Allies.

I enjoyed the 6.5 hours I spent on this 258 page World War II thriller. The main characters were a bit bungling in their jobs, but that is more realistic than the ‘James Bond’ like heroes we normally read about. The cover art is reasonable given that a German U-boat is central to the story. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

 

Review of “Sandstorm”

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Book Reviews – “Sandstorm” eBook was published 2016 (original paper edition was published in 1991) and was written by Laurence Gough. Mr. Gough has published eight novels.

I received an ARC of this novel on promotion by the publisher. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence, Mature Language and Mature Situations. The story is set in 1990s Egypt. The two primary characters are CIA agent Jack Downey and American businessman Charlie McPhee.

McPhee has spent the last few years in Egypt after a failed marriage. He is there illegally now that his visa has expired and takes odd jobs to make ends meet. Back in the US he had owned a very successful business that produced security systems and locks.

Downey is a very ruthless CIA agent. He begins to put together a team to penetrate Libya and assassinate Qaddafi. He brings in a pair of contractors that he has worked with before as the muscle of the team. McPhee is involuntarily involved with terrorists, and seeks help from the US embassy. That brings him to Downey’s attention and soon McPhee is part of the hit team.

Plans seem to come apart as the mission progresses. McPhee and fellow team member Jennifer Forsyth, whose father was killed at the hands of Qaddafi, are to play the part of husband and wife. Soon there is a real attraction between the two. But there is more to this mission that is first revealed. Will they succeed? Will they even survive?

I enjoyed the nearly 9 hours I spent reading this 320 page Thriller. It was a little slow at times, though it did have moments of excitement. I was never really drawn to any of the characters in the novel. I thought the plot was good and it had a nice twist at the end. I’m not sure why the cover art was chosen as helicopters played a very minor role in the story. I give this novel a 3.8 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Trailer #2 for “Kingsman: The Golden Circle”

Trailers – This second trailer shows a little more of what can expect to see when this sequel opens September 22. I liked the first Kingsman movie (it ranked 7.7/10 on IMDB) and look forward to this one as well. The synopsis:

“Kingsman: The Secret Service” introduced the world to Kingsman – an independent, international intelligence agency operating at the highest level of discretion, whose ultimate goal is to keep the world safe. In “Kingsman: The Golden Circle,” our heroes face a new challenge. When their headquarters are destroyed and the world is held hostage, their journey leads them to the discovery of an allied spy organization in the US called  Statesman, dating back to the day they were both founded. In a new adventure that tests their agents’ strength and wits to the limit, these two elite secret organizations band together to defeat a ruthless common enemy, in order to save the  world, something that’s becoming a bit of a habit for Eggsy…