The Dead Will Tell by Linda Castillo Book Tour Stop

Linda

I’ve mentioned a few times on this blog that one of my favorite series I discovered last year was the Kate Burkholder series by Linda Castillo. They take place in Holmes County, Ohio, which is close to where I grew up, and star Kate as the chief of police who is now English, but grew up Amish. I love this series and had been looking forward to the sixth book in the series, The Dead Will Tell, to release last Tuesday, July 8th. I also had the amazing opportunity to hear her speak and meet her, as she spent Release Day in Ohio!

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She spoke on her long journey to publication, the different genres she’s been drawn to, and about this series and the new book, among other things. She was very nice and humble and it was a great experience! I wish I had the courage to ask some questions and speak a little more to her, but just going to something like this is a pretty big step for this Anxiety prone girl!

I usually buy e-books these days, but of course I had to get something signed, so I picked up hard copies of The Dead Will Tell AND the first book in the series, Sworn to Silence.

Book Covers

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I’m almost done with The Dead Will Tell and am loving it thus far! Somewhere down the road I will also be holding a giveaway for the SIGNED copy of Sworn to Silence. What better way to start your new favorite series than with a signed copy!?

This is the first book tour I’ve ever attended and I really enjoyed it. What about the rest of you? Have you ever had the opportunity to meet a favorite author? What was your experience like?

Oh, and don’t forget to check out the Lifetime adapted movie of the first book, An Amish Murder starring Neve Campbell, this Sunday afternoon, July 13th, on the Lifetime Movie Network (check your local listings for time).

 

Runner by Patrick Lee – 4 stars (out of 5)

Runner

*I received a copy of this title from NetGalley. It does not impact my review*

Synopsis from Good Reads:

Sam Dryden, retired special forces, lives a quiet life in a small town on the coast of Southern California. While out on a run in the middle of the night, a young girl runs into him on the seaside boardwalk. Barefoot and terrified, she’s running from a group of heavily armed men with one clear goal—to kill the fleeing child. After Dryden helps her evade her pursuers, he learns that the eleven year old, for as long as she can remember, has been kept in a secret prison by forces within the government. But she doesn’t know much beyond her own name, Rachel. She only remembers the past two months of her life—and that she has a skill that makes her very dangerous to these men and the hidden men in charge.

Dryden, who lost his wife and young daughter in an accident five years ago, agrees to help her try to unravel her own past and make sense of it, to protect her from the people who are moving heaven and earth to find them both. Although Dryden is only one man, he’s a man with the extraordinary skills and experience—as a Ranger, a Delta, and five years doing off-the-book black ops with an elite team. But, as he slowly begins to discover, the highly trained paramilitary forces on their heels is the only part of the danger they must face. Will Rachel’s own unremembered past be the most deadly of them all?

I really enjoyed this book. The pace is fast and there’s a lot of action. I don’t usually like a lot of action, but Lee really made it work in Runner. Too often I feel like the author details it to death, to the point where it’s almost impossible to follow what’s actually happening. Here it was detailed without going overboard and it was all plausible. I also felt the pace was pretty perfect. It wasn’t just Go, Go, Go, but more like Go, Go, Go, Pause, Go, Go, Go, Pause, etc. The story moved along quickly, with lots of action, but it took time with quieter moments where there was character development and plot reveals.

The main character, Sam Dryden, is very likable. He’s a smart, caring, stand-up guy that always does the right thing. His experience in Special Forces makes him uniquely qualified to help Rachel escape her attackers and try to figure out the secrets that live in her head. Rachel was an intriguing character with lots of sides to her. My only complaint with her is that she almost always seemed much older than her eleven years.  Martin Gaul, the man leading the hunt for Rachel and Dryden, is another  interesting character – mostly despicable, but still a little sympathetic.

There were a lot of twists and turns in this book, perhaps the most surprising to me was that there is a large sci-fi element to the story. It’s not a bad surprise, I just didn’t expect it. Despite that, the story still seemed realistic in all its other aspects and contained enough surprises to keep me guessing the whole way.

While most chapters focused on Dryden, Rachel, or Gaul, there were other chapters that focused on Gaul’s competitor, Hager, and those he was training. While those chapters were interesting and informative, they also contained perhaps the only thing I didn’t care for in the book – the slightly graphic use of sex as motivation. Maybe it’s just a guy thing, but I didn’t quite see the need and it made me a little uncomfortable. However, since there were only a few examples of that, it didn’t really hinder my enjoyment of the rest of the story.

Overall, I really enjoyed Runner. It was suspenseful, fast paced, and action packed, but also smart and sweet. This looks to be the first book in a series based on Sam Dryden and I look forward to the next. I would recommend Runner to those who enjoy mystery, suspense, action, and a little dose of sci-fi.

*Runner will be available on February 18, 2014*