Ett Förbud Mot Mord av Louise Penny

img_2882Orginal titel: A Rule Against Murder

Publicerad: 2015

Publicerad av: Modernista (stort tack till förlaget för recensionsexet)

Antal sidor: 379

Första meningen: För över hundra år sedan upptäckte rövarbaronerna sjön Lac Massawippi.

Goodreads betyg: 4/5

Handling:

»Det som hände här i går kväll är inte tillåtet«, sa Madame Dubois.
Det var en sådan egendomlig sak att säga.
»Har du en regel som förbjuder mord?« frågade kriminalinspektör Beauvoir.

Det är mitt i sommaren och den förmögna familjen Finney har samlats på värdshuset Manoir Bellechasse för att ta farväl av sin bortgångne far.
Men i takt med att temperaturen stiger börjar också gamla hemligheter och bittra rivaliteter att komma upp till ytan. När värmevågen kokar över till en mäktig storm, lämnar denna efter sig ett lik.
Kommissarie Gamache, som är en av gästerna på Bellechasse, finner sig plötsligt i ett hus fullt av misstänkta.

Vad jag tyckte:

Jag tyckte väldigt mycket om den här boken. Tänk dig Poirot men i modern tolkning och det utspelar sig i Kanada. Handlingen var mycket spännande, även om den hade perioder som var mer transportsträcka än något annat, men det var trots det en mycket bra bok. Som man brukar är man läser deckare försöker man lista ut vem mördaren är och här var det för mig alldeles omöjligt. Samtidigt kändes det ganska uppenbart när mördaren väl avslöjades.

Kommissarie Gamache var en trevlig huvudkaraktär. Det var verkligen en modern version av Hercule Poirot, men mer som en hylling, inte som en rip-off. Man kände att Gamache hade kontroll över situationen och det var till och med så att man kände sig trygg med honom. Ganska svårt att få den känslan när man läser en bok men Louise Penny har lyckats med det.

Resten av karaktärerna är en härlig samling. Det finns karaktärer som du verkligen känner för och några man i princip hoppas ska falla offer för mördaren. Penny har skapat flera komplexa och intressanta karaktärer som verkligen gjorde den här boken intressant. Vad som även var bra var att man fick veta vad nästan alla karaktärer tyckte och kände vid något tillfälle under bokens gång vilket definitivt gjorde karaktärera mer verkliga.

Handlingen var bra uppbyggd och det var intressant att läsa. Det var inte bara fokus på mordet och hitta mördaren, utan man fick även veta mycket om själva hotellet (som nästan är en helt egen karaktär) och mycket om de olika karaktärerna. Det gjorde i och för sig att vissa delar var lite långsammare att läsa och visa stycken kändes tyvärr helt ointressanta. Men boken i helheten var mycket bra och intressant att läsa.

Rekomenderar jag den?

Absolut!

Eric by Terry Pratchett

img_2878Original Title: Eric

Year Published: 2013

Published by:  Harper

Number of Pages: 160

First Sentence: The bees of Death are big and black, they buzz low and somber, they keep their honey in combs of wax as white as altar candles.

Goodreads Rating: 5/5

Plot:

Discworld’s only demonology hacker, Eric, is about to make life very difficult for the rest of Ankh-Morpork’s denizens. This would-be Faust is very bad…at his work, that is. All he wants is to fulfill three little wishes: to live forever, to be master of the universe, and to have a stylin’ hot babe.

But Eric isn’t even good at getting his own way. Instead of a powerful demon, he conjures, well, Rincewind, a wizard whose incompetence is matched only by Eric’s. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, that lovable travel accessory the Luggage has arrived, too. Accompanied by his best friends, there’s only one thing Eric wishes now — that he’d never been born!

My thoughts:

I think you all are well aware of my obsession with Terry Pratchett by now. I think it’s more likely that hell will freeze over than me reading a TP book that I do not enjoy. This novella was yet another proof for me that TP is just brilliant. This is a parody/satire of Faust and it is just so good. (I haven’t read Faust so I cannot compare but who cares? Just read this instead).

This novella follows the wizard Rincewind who has by a strange turn of events been sent into another dimension (can you call the world of demons a dimension?). He is trying very hard to find his way back to his world but finds himself quite unsuccessful. It isn’t until he is summoned by the demonology hacker (he he) Eric that he is returned to his world. Problem is that he now is a demon (or at least he is in the eyes of the world). Rincewind is quite hilarious and his sarcasm and wit make me so happy.

The whole cast is quite hilarious as is the usual for a TP book. Even the villains are hysterically funny and just so interesting. The p.o.v’s are per usual when it comes to a TP book switching between several characters and they are all so much fun to read about.

Do I recommend it? 

Yes. All books Pratchett has written are masterpieces that you should read.

Once a Witch by Carolyn MacCullough

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Original Title: Once a Witch

Year Published: 2010

Published by:  HMH Books for Young Readers

Number of Pages: 292

First Sentence: I was born on the night of Samhain, when the barrier between the worlds is whisper thin and when magic, old magic, sings its heady and sweet song to anyone who cares to hear it.

Goodreads Rating: 4/5

Plot:

Tamsin Greene comes from a long line of witches, and she was supposed to be one of the most Talented among them. But Tamsin’s magic never showed up. Now seventeen, Tamsin attends boarding school in Manhattan, far from her family. But when a handsome young professor mistakes her for her very Talented sister, Tamsin agrees to find a lost family heirloom for him. The search—and the stranger—will prove to be more sinister than they first appeared, ultimately sending Tamsin on a treasure hunt through time that will unlock the secret of her true identity, unearth the sins of her family, and unleash a power so vengeful that it could destroy them all. This is a spellbinding display of storytelling that will exhilarate, enthrall, and thoroughly enchant.

My thoughts:

I really liked this book. It was well written and fun to read. It wasn’t exactly what I had expected but it was still a great read.The plot was interesting and the twists and turns felt quite realistic and suited the story well.

Tamsin was a good main character but could be annoying at times. It was the “oh bohoo life has treated me so unfairly so I will be punish everyone around me” that is quite typical for teenagers in ya to behave like that had me a little annoyed. But it wasn’t too much of it and it did get better.

Gabriel, also known as the love interest, was also a good character. He was wittier than Tamsin and balanced her grumpiness quite well. It is fair to say that the characters overall were quite flat, but they did have moments that made them shine and kept them interesting.

I suppose that is what can be said for the entire book to be honest. It wasn’t fantastic and it didn’t have me on the edge of my seat. It was entertaining though and did have glowing moments just about when I was about to loose interest when it managed to recapture my interest and kept me going.

Do I recommend it? 

Yes, I do.

The Wrath & the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh

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Original Title: The Wrath and the Dawn

Year Published: 2015

Published by:  G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers

Number of Pages: 404

First Sentence: It would not be a welcome dawn.

Goodreads Rating: 5/5

Plot:

One Life to One Dawn.

In a land ruled by a murderous boy-king, each dawn brings heartache to a new family. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, is a monster. Each night he takes a new bride only to have a silk cord wrapped around her throat come morning. When sixteen-year-old Shahrzad’s dearest friend falls victim to Khalid, Shahrzad vows vengeance and volunteers to be his next bride. Shahrzad is determined not only to stay alive, but to end the caliph’s reign of terror once and for all.

Night after night, Shahrzad beguiles Khalid, weaving stories that enchant, ensuring her survival, though she knows each dawn could be her last. But something she never expected begins to happen: Khalid is nothing like what she’d imagined him to be. This monster is a boy with a tormented heart. Incredibly, Shahrzad finds herself falling in love. How is this possible? It’s an unforgivable betrayal. Still, Shahrzad has come to understand all is not as it seems in this palace of marble and stone. She resolves to uncover whatever secrets lurk and, despite her love, be ready to take Khalid’s life as retribution for the many lives he’s stolen. Can their love survive this world of stories and secrets?

Inspired by A Thousand and One Nights, The Wrath and the Dawn is a sumptuous and enthralling read from beginning to end.

My thoughts:

This was such a magical book. It gets its claws in you from the first page and never lets you go. I was a little hesitant to start this book though since I had read E.K. Jonhston’s fantastic A Thousand Nights which I absolutely loved. I thought I wouldn’t be able to look at this without comparing it with just A Thousand Nights, but that wasn’t a problem. This stands very well on its own and it was only after I finished it that I compared it to Jonhston’s book and found that they are both excellent in their own ways.

Shahrzad is an excellent main character and such a fantastic character. I pretty much fell in love with her, she is just that amazing. She is strong yet not fearless, good yet not perfect. She felt real and is a heroine I happily support. She did what she believed was right and what she needed to do, but it didn’t make her a hundred percent certain in her ability to make things right. She doubts herself which made her so very human.

Khalid is a complex and very interesting character as well. It was interesting to see how his relationship with Sharzad developed and changed, and how he struggled with being a good ruler for his country. He is a complex character that I instantly cared about. That doesn’t mean that the book makes excuses for his actions.

The handful of minor characters are very important to the story and add a depth to it. None of them feel superfluous, they are just smaller keys to the story in comparison to the big keys that are Sharzad and Khalid.

The language and the overall way this fantastic book is written are what gives it that extra magical feeling. The words flow from the pages and you feel the story in your bones. The plot is captivating and I was never bored reading this book.

Do I recommend it? 

Oh god yes!

A Darkness Strange and Lovely by Susan Dennard

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Original Title: A Darkness Strange and Lovely

Year Published: 2014

Published by:  HarperTeen

Number of Pages: 432

First Sentence: When Jie’s letter came in the mail, I was so elated I forgot I had no hand.

Goodreads Rating: 4/5

Plot:

With her brother dead and her mother insane, Eleanor Fitt is alone. Even the Spirit-Hunters—Joseph, Jie, and the handsome Daniel—have fled to Paris. So when Eleanor hears the vicious barking of hounds and sees haunting yellow eyes, she fears that the Dead, and the necromancer Marcus, are after her.

To escape, Eleanor boards a steamer bound for France. There she meets Oliver, a young man who claims to have known her brother. But Oliver harbors a dangerous secret involving necromancy and black magic that entices Eleanor beyond words. If she can resist him, she’ll be fine. But when she arrives in Paris, she finds that the Dead have taken over, and there’s a whole new evil lurking. And she is forced to make a deadly decision that will go against everything the Spirit-Hunters stand for.

In Paris, there’s a price for this darkness strange and lovely, and it may have Eleanor paying with her life.

My thoughts:

This was such a good sequel to Something Strange and Lovely. I loved the first book and I adored this one as well. It was the perfect mix of adventure, mystery, suspense and with a dash of romance.

I really like Eleanor. Yes, she has her flaws and there are moments when I just want to shake some sense into her but overall, I really like her. She is dealing with something extremely stressful and I do believe that it would have been unrealistic if she had reacted to it with complete ease.

All the characters from the first book are back in this one. Although some are only mentioned a few times whilst other play bigger parts. All the Spirit-Hunters are back, now living and thriving in Paris. I loved seeing how they were coping with the events that transpired in Philadelphia and also how they handled their new situation. I did get a little mad with Joseph for his behaviour but at the same time it was understandable (read the book and you will know what I mean).

We also get a marvelous new character, Oliver. He is just absolutely fantastic and pretty much made this book for me. It would have been good without him, but is amazing with him. He is sassy, sarcastic and just adorable. You’ll love him too.

The plot then. It was interesting and entertaining, but this time around there were some issues with the pacing. Either something was happening all the time or nothing happened. It sometimes felt like you were being bombarded with things, some even a little over the top. But it is still very entertaining and it’s not a bad thing per se. I still enjoyed this very much and will soon get on to book number three!

Do I recommend it? 

Yes, I do!

Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

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Original Title: Crown of Midnight

Year Published: 2013

Published by:  Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Number of Pages: 418

First Sentence: The shutters swinging in the storm winds were the only sign of her entry.

Goodreads Rating: 5/5

Plot:

Crowned by Evil.
Bound by Duty.
Divided by Love.

Celaena Sardothien, royal assassin, is the King of Adarlan’s deadliest weapon. She must win her freedom through his enemies’ blood – but she cannot bear to kill for the crown. And every death Celaena fakes, every lie she tells, put those she loves at risk.

Torn between her two protectors – a captain and a prince – and battling a dark force far greater than the king, Celaena must decide what she will fight for: her liberty, her heart or the fate of a kingdom…

My thoughts:

This book slayed me. It was just such a rollercoaster of emotions and when it finished I had such a book hangover. It was fantastic and such a good continuation of the first book.

We get to learn so much more about all the characters here, things that start telling us just how they ended up being the persons they are now. And it is mostly heartbreaking. I know that Celaena is a badass assassin but I just want to cover her in blankets, cuddle her and hide her away from all the evil in her world. I loved how we got to see so much more about her character and see how she changed, not always for the better, but into something that could fight the evil king.

Chaol and Dorian have me tugging at my hair in exasperation. Men really are dense aren’t they? That doesn’t mean that they don’t have their hearts in the right place, but goddammit boys, stop being so stupid! Dorian is my baby. He fights and fights, and despite being broken so many times he still fights for what he thinks he is right and manages to maintain his image of the fancy prince. Chaol is the soldier with a heart of gold, and through it all, he never stops caring for his prince, his men or Celaena. Gotta love a man like that.

The plot is just fantastic. It has such a nice flow to it and the pace never feels rushed or too slow. Sure, it has moments where it slows down, but trust me, you need those moments to catch your breath. Maas’s writing is amazing and draws you right in. The plot is interesting with twists and turns that make it even more interesting. I literally closed this book and immediately reached for the next.

Do I recommend it? 

Hell yes!

ARC Review: The Bachelor Girl’s Guide To Murder by Rachel McMillan

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Original Title: The Bachelor Girl’s Guide to Murder

Year Published: 2016

Published by:  Harvest House (an arc was kindly provided via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review)

Number of Pages: 289

First Sentence: Jemma, Your father and I have decided that, after giving you several appointments to prove you are pursuing proper a proper course for a lady of your station and background, we can no longer financially support your endeavours.

Goodreads Rating: 4/5

Plot: 

In 1910 Toronto, while other bachelor girls perfect their domestic skills and find husbands, two friends perfect their sleuthing skills and find a murderer.

Inspired by their fascination with all things Sherlock Holmes, best friends and flatmates Merinda and Jem launch a consulting detective business. The deaths of young Irish women lead Merinda and Jem deeper into the mire of the city’s underbelly, where the high hopes of those dreaming to make a new life in Canada are met with prejudice and squalor.

While searching for answers, donning disguises, and sneaking around where no proper ladies would ever go, they pair with Jasper Forth, a police constable, and Ray DeLuca, a reporter in whom Jem takes a more than professional interest. Merinda could well be Toronto’s premiere consulting detective, and Jem may just find a way to put her bachelor girlhood behind her forever–if they can stay alive long enough to do so.

My thoughts:

I really enjoyed this book. It was a fun story obviously inspired by the stories of Sherlock Holmes (who is mentioned in this book as well) but instead of starring two gentlemen it stars to ladies.

I was happily surprised when I realized this book was set in Canada. I was expecting either London or somewhere in the US as that’s where books are usually set (or so it seems). Anytime a book is set somewhere else I get a little giddy. It was wonderful to read a historical book set in Toronto and having the author explore some of the issues that were plaguing even Canada in the early 1900’s. We have women being treated as very inferior, immigrants being very badly treated and severe differences between the classes (ok, this could have been set this year).

Merinda and Jemima were absolutely wonderful characters. Just like Holmes and Watson, they balance each other perfectly. One is the wild one with a brilliant mind and the other more grounded but still very clever. Just like the Sherlock books, this is written from Jemima (or Watson’s) p.o.v, with small sections being written from other characters point of view. There is some romance in this book as well, but it never overshadows the plot or implies that the girls need a man to be successful. Well done, McMillan, well done.

The plot was really well written and I for one could not correctly guess the murderer until the big reveal in the book.There were several twists and turns that were so interesting and kept the mysterious air of the plot.

Do I recommend it? 

Yes, I really do.