Die Again – The BOLO Books Review

Tess Gerritsen’s series featuring Jane Rizzoli and Maura Isles now numbers ten novels along with a successful television series. As with any series featuring recurring characters, there is always the chance of the chemistry starting to fail or for the plots to go stale. This is not a problem that is likely to figure into Rizzoli and Isles’ journey. This is credit to both Gerritsen’s talent at mining the deepest and darkest of human behavior, as well as the complexity she imbues into both the main characters.

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BOLO Books interviewed by Helen Smith

From the Booking Desk:

Today on her blog, UK author Helen Smith interviews me about the blog, my favorite moments in blogging, and my most anticipated books of 2015. Please stop by and see what I have to say and let Helen and I know what you think!  Follow the link to Helen’s blog.  And if you have not already, be sure to check out the books in her Emily Castles Mystery Series.

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BOLO – Week of December 14, 2014

From The Booking Desk:

Can you believe it’s already the middle of December? As I am sure that everyone is getting ready for the holidays, I am only going to list one book this week. But, it is the return of a old favorite, so I think you’ll be excited.

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Dark Tides – The BOLO Books Review (UK Edition)

Sometimes a good story well told is the most rewarding experience. In the case of Chris Ewan’s Dark Tides, this is most definitely the case. Ewan tells his tale in what seems like a very simple manner; however, the reality is that the structure of the novel is just different enough to make the whole experience feel fresh and experimental, and the end, deeply rewarding.

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BOLO Books’ Top Reads of 2014

From the Booking Desk:

It is that time of year again. Various review outlets and fans have been posting their listings of the best novels of last year. Since I have not read every book published, I prefer to call my list, Top Reads.

This year was a particularly bountiful year, so the narrowing down of the list was not easy. In the end, however, I think I am presenting you with the most accurate list I can compile of my favorite books read last year. Titles are presented in alphabetical order and in no way reflect any other ranking beyond that.

In case you missed them the first time around, click on the pull-quote link to open a new window with the full book review. Thanks to all those writers this year who made my job in picking favorites even harder than normal.

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Serial –
The Podcast Phenomenon

From The Booking Desk:

The success of the “Serial” podcast can only be described as a phenomenon. One of those times when something in the ether gels and a piece of pop culture goes from relative obscurity to fanaticism (or more accurately in “Serial’s” case: from healthy listenership to constant reference in the unlikeliest of locations).

I first heard about “Serial” from my dear friend Ann, who lives in Australia (so yes, this show has reach). When she mentioned that I should be listening to this podcast, I was instantly intrigued. Ann knows me pretty well, so if she was recommending this, then this was probably something that was going to interest me. Of course, life got in the way and then Bouchercon came around, so I never did check it out. Then an odd thing started happening that first week of November. I would be in a random conversation with someone and they would mention “Serial.” This happened more times than I can count. And then Bouchercon – I can’t even tell you the number of conversations I had and/or overheard in which the topic du jour was “Serial.”

Quickly upon returning home after the conference, I started listening. And like many others, I was instantly hooked. I binge-listened to as many episodes as I could and was soon anxiously awaiting new segments along with (it seemed) everyone else.

Because I knew that “Serial” was reaching an audience that had varying levels of exposure to true crime tales and crime writing in general, I had the idea to approach some crime writers and fans to get their take on “Serial.” I wanted to encourage fans of the podcast to realize that “Serial” has much in common with the best of crime writing (fiction or non) happening today.

To say that the reaction I got was unexpected would be an understatement. Instead of having everyone jump on board saying of course – and let me say here, I did get a fair number of those responses – but instead I received some kickback from people telling me that they didn’t think “Serial” was successful or worthy of the time investment. This reaction intrigued me, as by this time, I myself was becoming disenchanted with “Serial.”

Most of those with strong negative feelings have opted not to weigh in and even some of the strongest supporters have chosen not to participate in the end, but when you read these comments from those that did submit thoughts, you will see a common thread throughout.

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