Friday, December 27, 2013

The Invisible Code by Christopher Fowler

'The Invisible Code,' the 10th in Christopher Fowler's 'Peculiar Crimes Unit' series finds Detectives Bryant and May applying their unusual method of crime-solving in a baffling case involving international security issues and witchcraft. Arthur Bryant, the more eccentric of the two old detectives, brings his usual knowledge of London history and archaeology to bear on the case which somehow, circuitously, leads him to the answer. As usual at the very last moment, Bryant figures it out. The suspense about who done it and can they catch him continues to the last chapter. Fans will enjoy 'The Invisible Code'; newbies should start near or at the beginning of the series with 'Full Dark House.'

Related links:  Janet Maslin's review in the New York Times
Christopher Fowler's blog
St. Brides Church

Friday, December 20, 2013

Capers, Heists and Cat Burglars: The Good Thief's Guide series

Book five in Chris Ewan's 'Good Thief's Guide' series finds cat burglar Charlie Howard taking a mysterious assignment for the British Embassy in Berlin. He is asked to break into four apartments to find an important item stolen from the embassy. While gazing out the window of his first break-in, he witnesses a murder in the apartment building across the street. His 'easy money' heist takes a serious turn for the worse at this point.
Each book in this 'caper' series of mysteries has a different city as the backdrop. Peripatetic thief Charlie finds himself in Amsterdam, Paris, Las Vegas and Venice, always one step ahead of the law, before landing in Berlin. Where will he go next? It doesn't look good at the end of the book for Charlie, but we will have to wait for the sixth in the series to catch up with him wherever he lands.
Recommended for fans of light, humorous mysteries and caper style heists like Lawrence Block's Bernie Rhodenbarr series and Donald Westlake's Dortmunder series. 'The Good Thief's Guide to Berlin' is a little darker than the rest of the series and not as madcap as Westlake and Block in style because Charlie seems to be developing a conscience about his life's work. 'GTG Berlin' ends with a cliff-hanger and leaves readers ready for Charlie's next city and next caper.

Related links:
Our  2009 blog review of the first two books in the Good Thief's Guide series and author Chris Ewan's comment!

Take a look at author Chris Ewan's website and blog for more information about his' Good Thief's Guide' series and his stand-alone thrillers, 'Safe House' and "Dead Line' (the latter not yet published in the U.S.)

Monday, December 9, 2013

E-Readers: pros, cons & insomnia

The Dark Side of Reading

Over the past few years I’ve noticed that my infrequent posts are frequently a tad personal.  You know that I not only occasionally listen to country music, but I even have a favorite country song – Long Black Veil.  You know about my ever evolving definition of summer reading – from the ocean being mandatory to close proximity to a puddle being acceptable.  You may even know that my cats, Jake and Elwood, have library cards and reserve books that I would be too embarrassed to be seen reading.

What you don’t know is that I have gone over to the Dark Side of Reading.  Since a very young age I have needed to read for about twenty minutes before falling asleep at night.  This habit has been mildly annoying to bunkmates at camp, college roommates, and my husband.  Early in our marriage we established a few reading rules – no Janet Evanovich (laughter), no Stephen King (screaming nightmares), and no books over 300 pages (too heavy when dropped). As the years have progressed and reading by a dim light has become more difficult, I discovered the Dark Side.

This discovery coincided with my first iPad.  I had resisted an iPad because I already own a Kindle Fire, used mostly while traveling.  The iPad, however, is my shiny new best friend.  I know the iPad and Kindle share some features, but I like the larger screen size of the iPad.  We go everywhere together, including going to bed.  I love increasing and decreasing the brightness and font size. Even more, late at night when everyone else in the house is asleep, I love reading white print on a black background – the Dark Side of Reading.  In support of Kindle and in the interest of full disclosure, the Kindle would cause less damage if I dropped it on Jake’s head.

S. Bakos

Take a look at the library's 'All Things 'E' page for links to all of our downloadable resources: e-books, e-audiobooks, streaming e-books for kids, digital magazines from Zinio, and educational videos from Tumblebooks.
aka: eLibraryNJ