Friday, March 30, 2012

Tales that are sure to entertain are waiting to be discovered @ your library

The Rope by Nevada Barr
Publishers Weekly
Set in 1995, bestseller Barr’s exciting 17th Anna Pigeon thriller (after 2010’s Burn) takes readers where they’ve wanted to go for years—to Anna’s beginnings as a park ranger. Having left her life as a stage manager in New York City, 35-year-old Anna takes on a seasonal job in a canyon wilderness park on the shores of Lake Powell in Arizona. Ten days later, co-worker Jenny Gorman and others are idly wondering why she walked off the job without saying good-bye. The answer is that Anna lies naked, dazed, and injured at the bottom of a dry well. All Anna remembers at first is that she went for a hike in the desert, and now she’s at the mercy of an unknown assailant. When Jenny learns that Anna may not have left voluntarily, she begins to search. Meanwhile, Anna escapes after her attacker returns to the well—or was that really her attacker? Misdirection and a rising body count ratchet up the tension. 

The Scottish Prisoner by Diana Gabaldon
Kirkus Reviews
Vintage historical drama from seasoned veteran Gabaldon (An Echo in the Bone, 2009, etc.), another volume in her Lord John series. Jamie Fraser, the star of the show, gets around, despite being confined to quarters—a nice estate in the Lake District, granted—for having chosen the wrong side during the Jacobite rebellion. Yet, proud Scotsman that he is, how could he have done otherwise? He's the definition of dashing, though his spirits have been dashed at the death of his beloved wife. For their parts, Lord John and his brother Hal, loyal defenders of the crown, find they have need of Jamie when they set out to chase down a corrupt officer, "determined to bring Major Gerald Siverly to justice." Siverly is a bad, bad man—think the Jason Isaacs character in the Mel Gibson movie The Patriot—who doesn't think twice about killing his own men for his nefarious ends; if he had a handlebar mustache, he'd be twirling it. Meanwhile, the Greys, morally ambiguous chaps themselves, have deeper and darker reasons to want to put Siverly down. What more could you expect from a fop who heads an organization called the Society for the Appreciation of the English Beefsteak? A historical drama wouldn't be worth its salt without a grail, and Gabaldon obliges with a not completely cooked through yarn about an ancient Gaelic poem, a hidden treasure (with clues tucked away, of course, in an abbey) and a romp through the wilds of Ireland and Scotland. Gabaldon's formula is as reliable as an old Flash Gordon episode: There are the requisite villains, sneaky and dastardly, and good guys who are very good. But the author also has a nice, sometimes bawdy sense of humor—one of those villains earns the sobriquet "that wee arse-wipe," and some of the adult interactions in the story are very adult indeed. A bonus for longtime fans of the series: Unlike some of the earlier books, where they have been known to wander offstage, Fraser and the Greys are on hand for most of the action. A not strictly chronological but thoroughly entertaining entry in a franchise that shows no signs of running out of steam.

77 Shadow Street by Dean Koontz
From the Publiser –
I am the One, the all and the only. I live in the Pendleton as surely as I live everywhere. I am the Pendleton's history and its destiny. The building is my place of conception, my monument, my killing ground. . . .
The Pendleton stands on the summit of Shadow Hill at the highest point of an old heartland city, a Gilded Age palace built in the late 1800s as a tycoon’s dream home. Almost from the beginning, its grandeur has been scarred by episodes of  madness, suicide, mass murder, and whispers of things far worse. But since its rechristening in the 1970s as a luxury apartment building, the Pendleton has been at peace. For its fortunate residents—among them a successful songwriter and her young son, a disgraced ex-senator, a widowed attorney, and a driven money manager—the Pendleton’s magnificent quarters are a sanctuary, its dark past all but forgotten.

But now inexplicable shadows caper across walls, security cameras relay impossible images, phantom voices mutter in strange tongues, not-quite-human figures lurk in the basement, elevators plunge  into unknown depths. With each passing hour, a terrifying certainty grows: Whatever drove the Pendleton’s past occupants to their unspeakable fates is at work again. Soon, all those within its boundaries will be engulfed by a dark tide from which few have escaped.

Dean Koontz transcends all expectations as he takes readers on a gripping journey to a place where nightmare visions become real—and where a group of singular individuals hold the key to humanity’s destiny. Welcome to
77 Shadow Street.

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