Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009 Suspense & Thriller Challenge Completed & Fall Into Reading 2009 sort of...

I am very happy to announce that I did indeed finish 2009 Suspense & Thriller Challenge hosted by J. Kaye. I think this was one of the most interesting and challenging ones since we had to read 12 books and each one f them had to be in a different thriller category. I had a heck of a time trying to match the titles with categories and have to admit not all of them did I manage to match. But here's the list:

1. A Suitable Vengeance by Elizabeth George (murder mystery) - I am a fan of Ms. George and enjoyed this one thoroughly.

2. Deadly Decisions by Kathy Reichs (forensic thriller) - definitely a forensic thriller but I hope that as the series progresses I will find the books more interesting.

3. Slip & Fall by Nick Santora (legal thriller) - even though I don't generally like legal thrillers, I was pleasantly surprised by this one.

4. An Unsuitable Job For a Woman by P.D. James (private detective thriller) - not P.D. James's best

5. Friend of the Devil by Peter Robinson (romantic thriller) - not much romance in there, but I enjoyed the book and will be reading more in the series

6. A Matter of Roses by David Manuel (cozy mystery) - nice, cozy mystery taking place in Cape Cod. Strong religious themes though, which I personally don't mind (even like actually) but others might not appreciate so much

7. The Reincarnationist by M.J. Rose (action thriller) - didn't like it at all

8. The Case Has Altered by Martha Grimes (serial killer thriller) - another series that I will be reading more of

9. Firestorm by Iris Johansen ( erotic thriller) - a complete miss as far as category goes, nothing remotely erotic about this book ( I guess I had a misconception that since it was written by Nora Roberts, it would be erotic)

10. Nightwalker by Heather Graham (paranormal thriller) - I like this author a lot and will be reading more of her books

11. Vital Signs by Robin Cook (medical thriller) - I didn't like the writing, scattered all over the place and very unbelievable characters ( I will read more books by Mr. Cook to see if his writing improves before I say that maybe he should stick with medicine)

12. The Mosaic Crimes by Giulio Leoni (literary thriller) - the only literary thing about this thriller was the character of Dante Alghieri. The book did have a potential to be quite catching but I just couldn't get myself become involved with the story.

I am however very disappointed to say that as of December 20th, I managed to finish 19 books out of the 20 I set as a goal for Fall Into Reading 2009 Challenge hosted by Callapidder Days. Therefore, technically I did not complete this challenge on time. I still had a lot of fun and it helped me get through all those books I thought I would never get through this year. I will simply make a shorter list next year :).

1. Trail of Crumbs by Kim Sunee

2. Silverstein & Me by Merv Gold

3. The Book Shopper. A Life in Review by Murray Browne

4. Nightwalker by Heather Graham

5. Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin

6. The Tudor Rose by Margaret Campbell Barnes

7. Across the Endless River by Thad Carhart

8. Traveling With Pomegranates by Sue Monk Kidd & Ann Kidd Taylor

9. No Wind of Blame by Georgette Heyer

10. Vital Signs by Robin Cook

11. 20 Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

12. The Actor and the Housewife by Shannon Hale

13. The Mosaic Crimes by Giulio Leoni

14. An Unsuitable Job for a Woman by P.D. James

15. The Fourth Hand by John Irving

16. A Flickering Light by Jane Kirkpatrick

17. Soulstice by Simon Holt

18. The Elephant Keeper by Christopher Nicholson

19. A Circle of Souls by Preetham Grandhi

I have to say that there were many good reads on this list and it's very hard for me to pick only one best book. Nightwalker, Alice I Have Been and No Wind of Blame would probably be the top three even though they each are a different genre (paranormal/romantic thriller, historical fiction & cozy, whodunit mystery respectively).

It's much easier to point to the most disappointing books. A Trail of Crumbs takes the cake in this category, closely followed by The Elephant Keeper. They were both the most disappointing because I expected a lot more from the books (considering the hype and reviews I read beforehand).

That's that for this year's summaries. I don't think I'll be able to squeeze another post before 2010. I am still working on one more 2009 challenge. It's the LT's 999 reading challenge and I am 2 books away from completing it but the organizers are really lenient and it will be okay to finish in the beginning of 2010.