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December 2, 2016

Reading New Genres

by Susan Roberts

Like many people, I often get stuck in a rut and only read specific genres of books but it's always nice to step out of your comfort zone and try something different.  Here are a few of my recent reads that I really enjoyed even though they are not my normal topics.

Do you get stuck in a rut with the books you read?  Do you think that's good or are you ready for a change?

Blackbeard's Daughter by Diana Strenka

cover Blackbeard's Daughter
a free book was provided for this review
Colonial dreams have become piratical nightmares. Margaret takes one disastrous turn after the other as she confronts the perils of murder, war, and revenge. When her father decides to pursue criminal mischief aboard a pirate's vessel, Margaret joins him in an effort to save his life. Will she weather the storms ahead, or will they destroy her?

This is a historical fiction novel about the daughter of Edward Teach, more commonly known as the pirate Blackbeard. It was quite an interesting look at the lives of Edward and his family mainly told through the eyes of his daughter Margaret. It tells of Edward's earlier life and his love of the sea and the things that happened in his life that made him become a pirate. Margaret also had a rough life after the family moved to America and the author goes into lots of detail on why she wanted to be a pirate like her beloved father. Overall, it was a very interesting look at a time in history that was new to me as a reader. Margaret was a strong female character and I enjoyed her story.

Buy Blackbeard's Daughter at Amazon

The Blood Led Her by Robert DiGiacomo

cover The Blood Led Her
a free book was for this review
Claudia doesn't care who Jesus is supposed to be. Her husband Decius has a job to do-kill him. She helps bathe him when he gets home, grasping the scroll that carried his orders. When Claudia accidentally swallows some of the blood of Jesus, Decius suddenly dies.
Centuries later in Philadelphia, Al Campo's trying to distance himself from government agencies counting on him to do their dirty work. He unexpectedly saves Eva, a twelve-year-old girl, when he's almost shot by an assailant chasing her down. She can't explain much about why she's totally alone, and she won't part with her backpack. Al later discovers the scroll she carries as they visit his sick friend. What he can't begin to imagine is its immense power.
Only two things are for certain. Whoever's after her won't give up, and Al's all she has. So it's a race for survival as he remains her protector. But in the end, who's protecting whom?

This is an interesting book and even though it is not one of the genre's that I usually read it kept my interest throughout. Lots of twists and turns and a great job with an interesting concept.

Buy The Blood Led Her at Amazon

A Solitary Awakening: Book One of the Warren Files by Kevin Cady

cover A Solitary Awakening
a free book was provided for this review
Elijah Warren's world has always been one haunted by murderers. His personal life is non-existent, though it's not like he's noticed. Work consumes him, and he's buried himself in the FBI's exhaustive demands. There's no time for romance with killers to track--that is, until the beautiful and erudite Aurelia Blanc is thrown into his life, along with the so-called "Poetic Murderer."
The Poetic Murderer makes murder an art form, each crime scene an exhibit. To catch him, Elijah and Aurelia must decipher cryptic poems and study imaginative death scenes. They traverse the United States, into the uncharted past of a killer most twisted, whose brutal violence evokes not only empathy for the victims, but an interest in the killer himself.
In time, what these detectives discover about both themselves and the Poetic Murderer will change their lives forever. First, they must understand him. Then, they must stop him, but will a romantic liaison make the killings more personal? If Elijah and Aurelia don't stay focused, one could end up dead at the hand of a Poetic Murderer.
This is the debut novel by Kevin Cady and based on this novel, he has a great future ahead of him. This is a murder mystery but it has an extra twist, the killer leaves poems at the crime scenes as clues for the FBI. There were a lot of great literary references which made the book more interesting than the normal books in this genre.

Elijah is a solitary person who appears to have a very lonely life. His job in the FBI is his life until he starts to spend time with Aurelia, a forensic pathologist in the FBI. As they race around the country following the poems that the Poetic Murderer leaves as clues, their relationship changes considerably. In the beginning, they didn't even like each other but as their time together increased so did their feelings for each other. They worked very well together and I am looking forward to the additional books in this series to see if their relationship will continue. Along with a little love interest, the murders and the clues are full of twists and turns. WARNING - the killer is extremely sadistic and some of the crime scenes that are described are pretty gruesome.

This was an enjoyable book that kept me turning pages very fast to see if and how the crime spree would be solved.

Buy A Solitary Awakening at Amazon

Susan Roberts lives in NC when she isn't traveling.  She and her husband enjoy traveling, gardening and helping to take care of their grandson.  Susan reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction and thrillers. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on Facebook.

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