Sunday, June 20, 2010


By Karen E. Olson
Obsidian Mystery
Penguin Group
ISBN-13: 978-0-451-22549-8
320 pages
$ 6.99

Once someone is rid of a husband who really is a criminal, they are not looking forward to the day when
the ex-spouse reappears. So when Annie Seymour is at a bachelorette party, she is surprised to
discover her ex as the manager of the establishment. When Annie hears gunshots outside, she is
shocked to discover Ralph, her ex, on the sidewalk facedown and dead.

So who would gain the most from this death? Who would have the means, motive, or opportunity for
killing him? Logically, the ex-wife who immediately viewed the dead body would be an obvious suspect.
Of course, it doesn’t help that Annie’s gun was discovered under the seat of her car by a police
detective, who also was a former boyfriend, and is missing four bullets.

The newspaper that employs her, temporarily reassigns her to cover the social engagements rather than
the police reporter while she is being investigated. However, that doesn’t stop her investigating the
death herself. Of course, it does complicate issues when Annie discovers that her mother was the
attorney for her ex-husband. Why did he need an attorney?

Added to this is a reunion with a former friend, a male stripper who seems to always be wherever she
appears, and a local community pastor who seems to have no church, but does have a following. Also,
who is following her and why?

SHOT GIRL is the fourth and final installment in this series by Karen E. Olson.

Karen E. Olson has lived most of her life in Connecticut. She began her writing career by working in any
writing opportunity she could find. She has spent twenty years in the newspaper business. Now, she
edits a medical journal part-time at Yale which allows her more writing time.

Teri Davis June 20, 2010


By Michael Bowen
Poisoned Pen Press
September 2009
ISBN-13: 978-1-59058-667-9
238 pages
$ 24.95

Living at a service academy can be a difficult adjustment. For Harold Lindstrom, his life as a plebe at the
U. S. Naval Academy, just became extremely difficult when a marine discovers him naked, unconscious,
almost dead, and in need of resuscitation in a cheap motel in Annapolis.

Added to that, Harold’s closest relatives, Ole and Lena Lindstrom, are also having challenges with their
politically active lives and decide they need an attorney for their copyright ideas, as well as for Harold.
They have finally found the newest political candidate to support for the state attorney general,
Veronica Gephart who is focusing on a domestic violence platform.

Rep Pennyworth is the lawyer chosen and with the companionship of his wife, Melissa, who is an
English professor, the two discover that Lena and Ole lead a dramatically opinionated and boisterous life
together. When Lena is arrested for supposedly hitting Ole in the back of the head with a frying pan.
She claims that she heard an intruder and is completely innocent. The two have had numerous conflicts
over their years and they have had many accounts of being violent with each other. It’s just the way
they are even if their candidate is against domestic violence.

SERVICE DRESS BLUES is the fifth mystery with Rep and Melissa Pennyworth. This is a series where it
would have helped to have a little of the background of the Pennyworth’s characterizations and
relationships which were likely in the previous novels.

The strengths of this novel are in the trivial events within the story such as the baseball trivia regarding
the Milwaukee Brewers and the everyday life of being a plebe at the Naval Academy. Also of interest is
the political activities involving having a successful election and the little things that make all the

Overall, SERVICE DRESS BLUES was an enjoyable book to read.

Teri Davis June 20, 2010

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The Doomsday Key

By James Rollins
Harper Collins
May 25, 2010
Mass Market Paperback
ISBN-10: 006123141X
ISBN-13: 978-0061231414
560 pages

Back in the middle ages, King Edward in England sent one of his trusted advisors to take a census of
those within his boundaries for the purpose of discovering all the taxable income. This was knows as
Domesday Book. Oddly, a few areas that were visited were listed as “wasted”. Why? What did wasted
mean? Why would any area be listed as that?

Also listed in the book was the prophesy listing all the future popes until the end of time. Each was
properly named and described in the book. Unfortunately, the book has been misplaced or hidden.
What other secrets do the book hold?

Sigma (the good guys) and The Guild (the bad guys) are racing to discover the secrets in The Domesday
Book and the two follow no rules in keeping the other from discovering what is in the book. Added to
that are challenges of today such as overpopulation and world hunger.

This Indiana Jones like adventure, combines the old with the present day, and logically connects polar
bears, plagues, saints, Merlin, peat bogs, prophesies, the Black Madonna, the declining population of
the bumblebees, and more into an enthralling novel.

THE DOOMSDAY KEY is the sixth novel revolving around Sigma, and uses characters and
relationships from the previous novels, but masterly continues with the characters whether or not
people have read the previous books.

Fortunately, after completing the novel, the author allows the reader a glimpse of the real world with
details concerning the novel on what is truth and what is fiction. With “the truth being stranger than
fiction”, this leaves you with a little uneasiness at how close the novel could turn into reality.

Although slow at the beginning, I thoroughly enjoyed safely reading the book while allowing the
characters into the dangerous situations. I was not pleased with Mr. Rollins’ choice of who had to die.
Even with this, I am anxiously waiting for the next book in the series.

Teri Davis June 13, 2010

Broken Glass Park

By Alina Bronsky
Translated from the German by Tim Mohr
Europa Editions
Original in German printed in 2008
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 978-1-933372-96-9
221 pages

Sascha is not your normal teenager. Having been born in Russia but now living in Berlin, Germany
required learning a new language, culture, and trying to assimilate into the everyday life. Sascha
is additional blessed, or cursed, with an exceptional intelligence that separates her from others.
Another issue for the immigrants is the poverty that they experienced while living in the Russian Ghetto
in Berlin is quite similar to life in the inner cities in this country.

When her stepfather murders her mother, Sascha is horrified by the crime, the loss, and the fear of also
losing her half-brother and half-sister to social workers. Fortunately, her step-father’s cousin, Maria,
comes to take over the position of parenting. Unfortunately, Sascha is too intelligent, detached, and
obsessed with killing her step-father to allow anyone to have any influence over her.

Feeling frustrated about a news story regarding how her step-father is changing and has regrets, Sascha
approaches the news’ source. Volker Trebur is an editor who had met Sascha’s mother and wants to
help. Volker invites her to spend the night and Sascha quickly enjoys the advantages and wealth that
she had never experienced before. Added to Volker is also his teenaged -son who is magnetically
attracked to her.

BROKEN GLASS PARK is an excellent photograph into the life of this brilliant teen who wants to cared for
and valued. Sascha’s knack for survival and always landing on her feet makes her a wonderful, but
realistic heroine. Her courage in living everyday life is the hope and the encouragement which is the
motivation for the novel. The characterization is outstanding and the pacing is fast.

My only complaint is that the author uses a pen-name. With such a wonderful debut novel, why
hide? I definitely want to read more by this author, whoever they may be.

With any book that is translated, there needs to be consideration about the original story and the skills
of the translator. BROKEN GLASS PARK is an exceptional novel that literally haunts your thoughts

Teri Davis June 13, 2010