Another Drizzt book

Number 15 in the Drizzt series by RA Salvatore, The Lone Drow, was a good book It was a Drizzt book with Drizzt, which helped, but it wasn’t primarily about him — which might seem odd, but it worked. There was enough Drizzt to make me happy. He is such an interesting character, with so many layers, that I can’t help but like these books if he appears for even a minute. But since this one is called The Lone Drow, I would have expected him to play a more prominent role than he did. Without spoiling the story for you – although if you are a Drizzt fan, you can probably imagine the reason why – Drizzt is alone and learning to deal with the loss that he feels from losing his friends. He works with a pair of surface elves in this book, and that allows him to expand his character even more. He is learning what it means to be an elf.

Obviously, if I am on book 15, I love this series and highly recommend it to one and all.

Another book finished today

A few minutes ago I finished another book, Murder in Cannes by Susan Kiernan-Lewis. This is the 10th book in her Maggie Newberry series.

Maggie is an American married to a Frenchman. She was an ad executive in Atlanta before moving to France. She lives a few hours from Cannes, so when an old friend/boyfriend comes to town for an advertising festival, she is happy to take him up on his invitation to join him and his wife and a couple of co-workers there. Of course, nothing in Maggie’s life is ever simple. A weekend away from her husband and kids sounds appealing, but it ends up being an ordeal. She finds a couple dead bodies and is almost killed herself, all the while re-valuating her current life and the life she left behind.

The mystery here was a good one, and there were no shortage of bad guys to blame things on. I like Maggie and her husband, Laurent, a lot. I like how they work at their marriage. They are really different people from very different backgrounds, so it isn’t always easy. But they don’t give up. And that’s what counts.

I have read many of the books in this series and have enjoyed them all., I highly recommend them.

A cozy mystery

Early this morning I finished Murder at the Manor: A 1920s Cozy Mystery by Catherine Coles. The detectives here are a married couple, Tommy and Evelyn Christie. He is a former policeman, recovering from wounds he received in World War I, and she worked for the police during the war. In this, the first book in the series, they solve the murders of Tommy’s uncle and cousin. Tommy was third in line for the title of Lord Northmoor until the deaths, so he is immediately under suspicion. But of course, there are plenty of others who also had reason to want the two men dead, so there are no shortage of suspects. And eventually the true culprit is discovered.

This was a fun read. I recommend it if you like this type of book – a cozy historical mystery.

Aftermath

I just finished Aftermath by LeVar Burton. The book was originally published in 1997, but Burton did an audiobook version (reading the book himself!) last year, and the book was also issued as a ebook at that time.

The story takes place after the first African-American was elected president of the US — only to be assassinated before taking office and after the race wars that took place afterwards. A scientist has developed a machine that can cure diseases, and she is immediately kidnapped and her device stolen.. No one, it seems, wants diseases cured; the money is in looking for a cure. By means of some unexpected abilities related to using the machine, the scientist is able to communicate with others and bring together an odd mix of people who want to change the world. When the book ends, we are hopeful.

I really enjoyed this book. As Burton says in the introduction to the book, it seems even more appropriate now than when he wrote it. And I think reading it now, after everything that has happened and is happening in this country (the US), I am reading the book much differently than I would have in 1997. The message is one I could have embraced than as much as I do now, though: We have to learn to get along with each other. It sounds almost like an impossible dream, but I am trying to be hopeful.

I highly recommend this book if you are willing and able to read almost three hundred pages to get to a glimmer of hope. I am glad I did.

Another Earthrise book

Since I only own half of Daniel Arenson’s Earthrise books, I decided to read the last one I have before moving on. Early this morning I finished Earth Valor. As you might expect, it leaves earth victorious over the latest alien enemies, but it also lays the groundwork for the next alien enemies to arrive.

Again, we see growth in the characters and, as we reach the end of this book, we see them moving on from their military pasts. We also see, as we have before, how difficult that can be for a young man or woman who has fought for a number of years. We lose one main character, but we gain a couple more. It remains to be seen if they grow, too, as we move forward or if they are going to be expendable.

This book wouldn’t work, I don’t think, if you didn’t read the books before it. It wouldn’t even work if you read them out of order. That is OK, I think, but a reader should be well aware of it before undertaking this or any of the books in the series. Also, the characters start out as young recruits and are only 26 at the end of this book, so there is a lot of “coming of age” along with the fighting. With those caveats, I recommend them to anyone who enjoys space opera/military science fiction.