It was ADVERTISED as a combination of a cookbook with stories about Dr. Kay Scarpetta, and in that light, it fails on all counts. There IS no story, and nothing happening in the non-story — and worse still, none of the characters act like they do in the novels. The recipes are interesting, but basically this book was issued for one reason and one reason only — to milk some money out of the fans and to give them almost nothing in return.
John Cuddy gets asked by a friend to look into what appears to be an open-and-shut case — a young impoverished black man tries to get ahead at university, dates a white co-ed, and then after she turns up dead, he confesses to the crime while holding the murder weapon. Everyone thinks he’s guilty, including him. But Cuddy finds a strange group of people involved — a whacked psychiatrist with strange ideas, an elderly fitness nut, a sports fan, seductive patients, and sundry lovers.
What I Liked
The main people were all well-characterized, although a few of them were a bit one-dimensional. Cuddy does a good job of detecting, pulling at a variety of strings until they unravel. Good back-stories for some of the other series characters.
Suzannah is a mediator — she helps ghosts move on from this plane to the next. But when she’s not embracing her sixth sense, she’s earning money as a staff babysitter at a hotel/resort and dreaming about Jesse who haunts her current home. Then she meets trouble in the form of spoiled brat Jack who can also see ghosts, but doesn’t know that ghosts are actually real and is instead three steps away from a nervous breakdown. Suze has to help him figure out his own role with ghosts, at the same time that she tries to figure out more of the mystery with Jesse’s past life.
What I Liked
I really liked the idea of finding newbies who don’t know what they are supposed to do when it comes to ghosts — hey, didn’t they see the movie? I also still like the fact that Suze can actually interact with the ghosts (i.e. » Read the rest
A collection of 20 solve-them-yourself mysteries, perfect for reading on your break. For context, the stories are all short, suitable for reading one or two on a coffee break. If you have seen the 5-minute mysteries in the back of magazines like Reader’s Digest or remember the old Encyclopedia Brown series, then you understand the premise — you read a short-short story (almost flash length) with a mystery of “who did something”, ending with the narrator announcing she or he knows the solution. Then, as the reader, you are challenged to figure out the mystery too. Turn the page, and voila, the solution from the story’s narrator to see if you’re right.
What I Liked
Sometimes when you see this type of story presented in magazines, the author doesn’t play fair — they hide a piece of evidence, or they play games with personal pronouns to trick you into thinking the character named “Chris” is a man but is really a woman. » Read the rest