Tag Archives: lots of action

Review: The Night Charter by Sam Hawken

4 Stars

For just the second time in recent months, I read a hard-cover book and not an e-book.  I joined Book of the Month club (dangerous find for a book addict) and I choose The Night Charter as my selection for February.

This book introduced a new to me character named Camaro Espinoza.  From what I understand, she’s been around for awhile in novella form but this is the first full-length novel featuring her character.  And as someone who had never been introduced to this character before, the author did a very good job of introducing her.  There were enough snippets and flashbacks that make me want to go back and read the previous works so I can find a little more about her history.  She’s definitely a very interesting character.  Former soldier who had done some bad things in her past for the right reasons and had to flee her past life.  She now makes her living as a charter boat captain, taking customers out for some deep ocean fishing.

It all starts with a man who came to hire her boat for night fishing.  Parker Story, a man with a story.  A man who is mixed up in something bigger than he is.  What begins as a request to hire her boat for a night of fishing turns into something much more.  He has become mixed up with some not-so-nice people who want to pay her $10,000 to take them into Cuban waters to pick up a man and bring him back to the states.  An easy trip, just in and out and she can go on her way a little bit richer for just a few hours of work.

Of course things don’t quite work out that way for Camaro, Parker or any of the other people involved.  Not only are they bringing in someone from Cuba illegally, they happen to be bringing in someone who both sided desperately want to get their hands on for much different reasons.  The Cubans want to capture this man because they believe he is a terrorist and a dissident, someone who stirs up unrest under the Castro regime.  But his compatriots in the States want him to further their cause in a battle that has been going on for nearly 60 years between Castroites and their Anti-Castro enemies.

There are not many twists and turns in this book.  You always know who the good guys and the bad guys are.  There are definitely plenty of grey areas, but it’s pretty easy to figure out who the true villains are.  What is interesting is how Camaro holds herself.  She isn’t squeaky clean and she definitely doesn’t mind getting her hands dirty.  She’s always at the center of the action and she’s sometimes the cause of it.  You can see that she does have a heart and a conscience, and if put into her shoes, how many of us would be able to do the right thing?

Plenty of action, the story moves fast and there is very little lull in the action.  There were a few characters that didn’t quite fit.  But they didn’t detract from what ended up being a really good action novel.  It’s always fun to see a female protagonist that isn’t a damsel in distress.



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Filed under Mystery/Suspense/Thriller

Review: Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs

4 Stars

This is the third book in the Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series.  Definitely start with the first two books, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and Hollow City before even thinking about picking up Library of Souls.  You can’t read this book as a stand alone novel.  And I highly recommend that you read all three.  While highly enjoyable, I couldn’t rate this as a 5 star book no matter how much I liked the series, there were just some things that didn’t sit well with me.

Library of Souls picks up almost exactly where Hollow City leaves off.  You are once again with Jacob Portman and Emma Bloom, peculiar children on a mission to save their friends and all of pecuilardom from not only the monsters who have been preying on them, but on the person who has been behind all of these evil machinations.  Along with Addison, a dog with a nose for sniffing out peculiar children, they will travel from the present day to the Victorian era slums of Devil’s Acre to save their friends and their very existence.

Once again, the story is engrossing and there is action at every turn.  You think you know who your friends and who your enemies are only to have the tables turned on you more than once.  Jacob and Emma rely on themselves more often than not and you watch as Jacob comes into his own peculiar abilities as well as growing in confidence throughout the journey.  The story is also told around old photographs and without the photographs, I don’t think any of the books in the series would have quite the same impact.

There were a few things that just didn’t jive for me this time around.  The start of the story seemed to take quite awhile to get itself established again and this was surprising considering that it picked up right where the previous novel left off.  It seemed to take a very long time to get to the climax and there were several beginnings of stories and backstories that were never fleshed out and explained and this hurt the story in ways because as the climax came closer, they became more important but since they weren’t well explained, it led to some confusion.  And the ending…no.  The ending actually took away from the story.  While it did make me happy on some levels, it was so abrupt and left so many questions, I just couldn’t like how it ended.

Maybe that means that the peculiar children aren’t quite done yet?

I know that this series gets tagged a lot as a YA novel, but I definitely don’t think that it is purely for the YA audience.  There are definitely adult themes and some of the action is quite graphic and would not really be appropriate for many young readers.  But I definitely recommend it to anyone who likes a good story, interesting characters and a little bit of fantasy in their lives.




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Filed under Fantasy, Young Adult