Carte Blanche by Jeffery Deaver – Book Review

Deaver launches the James Bond character into the 21stcentury with his own unique style. A must have read for any Bond lovers, and thriller readers alike, but don’t be put off if you don’t like cars and guns, there is a lot more besides.

Aesthetically this book is very pleasing to read, the flocked, rubberised cover grips your hands. The cover image resembles a wisp of smoke and the design is repeated at the beginning of every chapter. I have both a standard copy (white/red) and a limited edition signed copied (black/white) which are both equally eye catching on my shelf.
All hard backs are going to be a little weighty and as this was a holiday read this summer, I did feels a paperback would have perhaps been better for travelling with, but the story gripped me from beginning to end and was worth the extra weight!  
The title is also really clever. So much better than the titles such as Octopussy and The Man with the Golden Gun, it has wit and style that really fits in with the narrative.
The narrative is well, Bond like. The formulae of the books were followed well, Bond had a fast car (although not an Aston Martin) and he even got the girl. He’s cheeky, witty and is one step ahead of the enemy no matter how much in trouble he seems. Yet it was Deaver’s personal writing style that made this book, for me, so enjoyable to read.  Red herrings and the rollercoaster ride of revolutions make this a fast paced read, and it will keep you guessing until the end.
The villain is possibly one of the best yet. Routed in modern issues with a flaw that makes your skin crawl, he is the perfect persona of 21stissues of recycling and corporate responsibility and their darker side.
It was the technical information on the cars and guns that was lost on me. I was laying in bed reading out the names of cars to my boyfriend to describe, as I had no idea what they were, if they were good or not or what they looked like. I understand that they are necessary for the book, but just not for me.
Overall I loved Jeffery Deaver’s take on the James Bond novel, with a fancy cover, good name and great characters. Yet the very Bond-ness of it means I prefer his own creations.
Thanks for reading,
Love Rie Reviews xx

The Burning Wire by Jeffery Deaver – Book Review

I have mentioned in previous reviews, Jeffery Deaver’s novels have been my first choice when it comes to the crime/thriller genre for a while now. My mum and I have read most (if not the full 28) books he has written. And as hard as it is to say – I think this has been my favourite one yet!
Front and back cover
I have always liked the way Deaver has adopted different themes in his novels. I find a lot of crime thrillers rely on tired psycho killers that go bump in the night. Where I enjoy Deaver’s varied imagination of speed change artists (Vanished Man) to computer hackers (Roadside Crosses) and now electrical engineer’s using electricity or ‘juice’ as a weapon.
Lincoln Rhyme is at his finest in this book, with the mix of weakness and strength that makes him such a well-rounded character. His personal struggles with his health and mental stability provide as much of the action in this book as the killer’s electrifying stunts do.
The twisting roller coaster of the final chapters, provides enough red herrings to fill an aviary. The main reason I regard it so high is it just kept me guessing till the end! The duel narrative sometimes had me a little confused with who the characters were chasing at each moment, but the book answered all necessary questions to satisfy any curiosities by the end of the book. 
Overall it was action packed roller coaster of false leads and detailed crime scene analysis that receives a rare 5/5.
A must read!
Thanks for reading,
Love Rie xx 

Roadside Crosses by Jeffery Deaver – A Review

I am a bit behind on reviewing this one, as it was released back in 2009. The author has since released 3 other books that I intended on reading and reviewing before the summer was out, but I just wanted to write a little something about this one.

I have been a big fan of Deaver since I got hold of a copy of ‘The Vanished Man’ which was released back in 2003. Any good crime drama seems to need to sexual tension, some chemistry between the protagonists; the lighter side of all the death, science and cop work, and Deaver accomplishes this in all his books. I worked through the Lincoln Rhyme series of his books quickly, gathering them from libraries, charity shops, and borrowing them from family, as the characterisation of the quadriplegic Lincoln Rhyme, and the lingering chemistry between him and Amelia Sachs was a great read.

This book, however, focuses on the protagonist Kathryn Dance. She is a body language, or kinaesthetic expert: think the female version of Dr. Lightman from the American television show ‘Lie to Me’. I am a great fan of anything body language related and I’m really surprised I hadn’t picked up on this series earlier. In fact I only picked up these books in my local library for my mum to read, as I am more into my supernatural fiction (addiction?) but I picked them up after she has finished and have had to renew them so I could finish them!

‘Roadside Crosses’ promises to be an exploration of the synth world, blogging and MMORPG’s in the author’s note, but I feel it does this in a detached sort of way. Although it does explore how damaging the anonymity of online behaviour can be, and how it affects our lives I was expecting more action online.  Instead it started off as a more than standard crime book and at times I thought I might just put it down and read something else. However I am glad I stuck with it as the easy to read but complicated constructed narrative was a real treat to read.

I have always loved the way Deaver writes in the way that I never think about it. Some books are so badly written, with too much or too little action I find myself criticising the way it is written, but these are seamless page flickers that suck you in. The second half of the book in particular is a really good read. The characters are well rounded and show weaknesses that allow many red herrings to lead us as the reader down many dead-ends.
There are many shock victims, and suspects along the way, and the weaving of the personal life of Dance and the case presents shocking conclusions. I always like to try and guess how the book is going to end, and having an easy suspect only halfway through the book is always a giveaway to a change in direction, but the narrative took me on a blind journey the whole way to the end, and I loved the end.
4/5 (extra browning points added for the supporting material your can discover online)

I have now ordered 2 copies of Carte Blanch (1 a first eddition signed copy and another to read) as well as a paper back of Burning Wire so look out for the reviews of those coming up soon too!

Thanks for reading,
Love Rie xx

Chris Carter – The Executioner. A Book Review by Sam Crossley

 I met Sam at school and we have been close friends since, particularly in College. He has been a big supporter of my blog and is also a fan of reading. So when he mentioned he had a bit of time of his hands and a pile of books this weekend I asked if he would like to write some reviews.

And this is the result 🙂

Please enjoy and comment your opinions on this book, and I look forward to hosting more of his reviews in the future.

Chris Carter – The Executioner

This book is thriller, and it’s not scared to go into detail! A detective in LA, specialising in serial killers, his psychological background making him perfect for analysing the evidence and working out the motive of “The Executioner”. His name is Robert Hunter and unfortunately this is the second book in the series, I have a feeling I have the first book at home, unread, which is a pain because although the other book is only briefly mentioned once or twice and has no effect on the plot of this one, it would lend something deeper to the characters in this book. It’s obvious whatever happened in The Crucifix Killer had a dramatic effect on the main characters.

Anyway, it’s a very easy read; the writing style is very fluid, coupled with the incredibly short chapters it keeps thesuspension up whilst giving you plenty of places to stop. If you feel inclined that is. I didn’t and finished this 472pg, 142 chapter book in 6 hours. Throughout the book you gain more and more knowledge about the main characters, Hunter and his partner Carlos Garcia. Towards the end you are even able to guess comments made before you read them. Their partnership is very fluid, although my only criticism is that the partnership is very one-sided with Hunter the wealth of knowledge and Garcia the less experienced sidekick who is sometimes ignored in my opinion.

The author, Chris Carter, was a criminal psychologist before he took to writing; this really shows in this book. You really get a feel for the type of person the detectives are facing as they slowly unearth the clues from each horrible crime scene to the next. Each thought up with detail that’s slightly more sinister and cruel than the last.

I feel that reading the first book would have given you a better understanding of the characters and possibly solved a few of the odd niggles I felt about the partnership, but other than that a very enjoyable read. One of the first things I intend of doing upon getting home is read the first one.

I give this a 3.5/5

Love Rie & Sam xx