Sunday, March 04, 2007

What I’m Reading -- Bestselling Authors

I don’t read much in the way of bestsellers, except occasionally for work purposes. There are a couple of exceptions to this rule and those include Nelson DeMille, Jodi Picoult and John Lescroart.

Wild Fire by Nelson DeMille

I got hooked on DeMille when I read 2004’s Night Fall, a novel about the crash of TWA Flight 800. DeMille carries his main characters, John and Kate Corey, over into Wild Fire. John is a former NYPD officer who is now working with a post-9/11 federal anti-terrorism unit with his second wife and FBI agent, Kate. John narrates the story and is a hilarious, sarcastic character.

As for the plot, I do have one gripe. Whether it is books, movies or whatever I just can’t get into the possibility that person A hates country B, so he attacks his own country pretending to be from country B, so that country A will attack country B. This plot is used all of the time and it does not seem that realistic to me.

Anyway in Wild Fire, DeMille writes about the rumored strategy that if the U.S. suffers a nuclear attack on its own soil by a terrorist, the President has a mandatory plan in place to nuke multiple cities in the Middle East. In order to make this come to pass, a group of rich and powerful Americans might be willing to set off some nukes in the U.S. John and Kate become involved in this intricate plot as they investigate why a routine scouting mission turned into the murder of their fellow officer in upstate New York.

This is the epitome of a fun book. The narration is hilarious and the action is about as non-stop as you can get. There are unrealistic moments and the main bad guy reaches James Bond villain status, but they don’t really detract from the book mostly because John and Kate are such likable characters. This is definitely a must read for any suspense fans.

The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult

Picoult’s The Tenth Circle came out early last year. As always Picoult features several intriguing characters in a swirling and surprising plot. Comic book creater Daniel Stone is putting out a new title for Marvel Comics when his troubled daughter is raped. As the investigation ensues, the true personalities and past sins of Daniel, his wife Laura and 14-year old Trixie come out. Dante’s Inferno and Daniel’s comic book hero Wildclaw parallel what is really happening to a family in crisis. Picoult’s characters are true to life as she drives home the point that people can only change so much.

The Suspect by John Lescroart

The thing I like about Lescroart is that he is a writer who writes legal thrillers and not a lawyer turned writer. In The Suspect, Lescroart takes one of his minor characters, lawyer Gina Roake, and gives her a tough case. It seems obvious to police that Stuart Gorman became angry when he wife threatened to divorce him and so he killed her. You can tell how much Lescroart loves San Fransisco, as the city is carefully described in all of his books. I thought this dragged some in the middle, but Lescroart is a good writer and a perfect read-alike for Grisham and Turow fans.

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