Stepping Out a Review: Italian Shoes

Happy Tuesday!

Today we have another review. It was a book originally given to my mother as a retirement gift solely due to its name given that my mother loves shoes. However, the book has very little to do with shoes; nevertheless, it is a fascinating read.


Title: Italian Shoes; Author: Henning Menkell; Genre: Fiction

The Gist- A grumpy, old doctor who lives on an icy island as a recluse receives a visitor that send him on an odd journey and a new way of thinking about his life.

What Stuck- Mankell’s writing style is beautiful.

Should you give a flip?- Yeah. It’s a small book, but a weighty read. There is a lot to nibble, so don’t let its size fool you into thinking it will be a quick read.  But it’s definitely a journey worth taking.



A Telling Review: The Cuckoo’s Calling


Title: The Cuckoo’s CallingAuthor: Robert Galbraith aka J.K. Rowling; Genre: Fiction

The Gist– A struggling private detective is hired by a former schoolmate’s brother to investigate the supposed suicide of his ultra-famous super model sister.

What Stuck- Rowling once again creates realistic, complex characters. I am personally very impressed by authors who seem to be writing about real people as opposed to people they invented. Rowling accomplishes this with ease.

Should you give a flip- Yes.  It’s a good tale with multiple sub-plots that add to the story’s complexity. I admit that it was in many ways a standard crime novel.  The ending wasn’t a jaw-dropper, but it was a solid story and strong debut into the genre.

Happy Reading!

P.S. This Friday is the book date, so don’t forget to tag along! For those who may have missed last Friday’s post about the impending day of epicness check it out here.

Playing Another Review: House of Cards

Happy Friday! Hope everyone has a fun weekend planned.  I thought we could start this grand day off with a little review.


Title: House of Cards; Author: Michael Dobbs; Genre: Fiction

The Gist- A intricate story of back-stabbing politics within the British Parliament to obtain the coveted seat of Prime Minister.

What Stuck- There is more narrative and exposition than many American novels, but Dobbs use it to quickly and thoroughly cover large spans of time which I appreciated.

Should You Give a Flip- Yes? Here’s the rub- I read it after I had watch the T.V. show (American version with Kevin Spacey). So I knew what was coming when I read the book. Perhaps I need someone else to read it who has not seen the T.V. show and let me know their thoughts. I think in general it was a good book.  It was just a bit anti-climactic for me, but I don’t think that’s the book’s fault.

Has anyone else read this?  Have you read this without or before seeing the T.V. show? Do you prefer to read books before viewing the movie or show adaptation?Thoughts…anyone…Bueller…??

Pursue Another Review: Chasing Darkness


Title: Chasing DarknessAuthor: Robert Crais; Fiction: Fiction/Mystery

The Gist– A suspenseful thriller beginning with a “trophy album” of a killer’s work found at the feet of a dead man who was once accused of these murders. However, he was set free with the help of the main character Elvis Cole.

What Stuck– Gripping beginning that certainly drew me in, but it didn’t keep me.

Should you give a flip?– Meh. It’s not a bad read, but certainly not the best of its genre.  It left me with many unanswered questions.  This was by design not bad writing, but nevertheless, I don’t care to be left wondering.

However, with this lack-luster review I leave you no recommendation for long-weekend reading. This is unacceptable so in lieu of Chasing Darkness I can recommend following fiction/mystery/crime-ish novels:

Tell No One by: Harlan Coben.  Seriously, hang on to your hats kids, it’s got a heck of an ending.

Cuckoo’s Calling  by: Robert Galbraith. It delivers a great story and awesome characters. (This is up for review later this month. But a book recommendation at the end of September doesn’t do you any good for Labor Day weekend.)

The Killing Game by: Iris Johansen. Another mind-blowing ending.  I liked it so much I read it twice.  I’ve only done this with four other novels, so it’s noteworthy.

Happy Reading!!

Firing Off Another Review- Inferno


Title: Inferno Author: Dan Brown Genre: Fiction

The Gist- Robert Langdon once again finds himself on the path of adventure where history and modern day weave together to profoundly change the future.  This time it’s Dante’s Inferno and the threat of overpopulation.

What Stuck- Dan Brown has a great ability to educate with art, history, and symbols in a way that doesn’t over complicate the story. I love learning, so I kind of feel like I get a two for one special with these books.

Should you give a flip- Yeah.  It’s an intriguing read and if you’ve enjoyed Mr. Brown’s other works, this should not disappoint.

A Bite-Sized Review: A Movable Feast

Here is little review to munch on this Tuesday morning!  Happy reading everyone!


Title: A Movable Feast; Author: Ernest Hemmingway; Genre: Non-Fiction/Memoir

The Gist- Musings and anecdotes about Mr. Hemmingway’s experience of living in Paris in the early 1920s.

What Stuck- The book struck me as a bit odd.  It’s disjointed and seems random.  And yet philosophical. I mentioned this to my mother who informed me that this was Hemmingway’s style. Since I haven’t read anything else by Mr. Hemmingway I was unaware of this, but not particularly fond of it.

Should you give a flip?- I can’t say you should. I want to say that it’s an interesting read, but I can’t describe why I feel compelled to say that.  I guess it was comforting to read that many of the greats out there struggle as much as the average joe. There…that lack of clarity pretty much reflects the book. Use your own discretion.

An Action Adventure: The Templar Legacy

Happy Friday everyone! We’ve made it to the end of the week. And since there is a lot of Friday-ness to celebrate, I thought a quick little review might be nice just in case you are in need of some weekend reading recommendations.


Title: The Templar Legacy; Author: Steve Berry; Genre: Fiction

The Gist– An action-packed adventure about lost treasure and the Knights Templar.

What Stuck A new take on a secret brotherhood’s story that never gets old. I never get sick of this tale and Berry gives it a new angle making it all the more interesting.

Should you give a flip?- Yes.  If you liked The DiVinci Code or the movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, this is going to be your kind of book.