Book Review: Before the Frost

I rate this book a 4 out of 5

I rate this book a 4 out of 5

Originally Published in Spruce Grove Examiner on December 28, 2012

I read this book like my youngest daughter enjoys an unexpected treat – savoring each bit with delight and gratitude, proceeding ever more slowly and with a growing regret that the experience will soon end.
The first Linda Wallander Mystery, (and Mankell’s tenth novel featuring Inspector Kurt Wallander) ‘Before the Frost’ joins Linda as she endures the waiting period required before she may begin her career at the same police station as her father. In forced stasis, she kills time, hangs out with her girlfriends and quarrels with her father… all quite boring, until her friend Anna disappears.
Since no one else believes it atypical of Anna to have vanished, Linda investigates the disappearance on her own. Linda’s concern, inexperience and persistence generate a few rookie mistakes, placing her in danger—and exposing a connection between her investigation and her father’s current case. When another of Linda’s friends disappears, father and daughter join forces, racing against time to stop a tragedy, the seeds of which were planted decades before.
I recommend this book to those who enjoy crime novels. The plot is intricate without fussiness, there is enough police procedure and not so much that one becomes mired in red tape, and Mankell’s characters are incredibly compelling.
Henning Mankell has written over thirty-five novels and many plays. Published in thirty-five countries, he consistently tops Europe’s bestseller lists. His work has been adapted for numerous television and film productions. He also won the German Book Prize and the Crime Writers’ Association’s Macallan Gold Dagger.

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Book Review: The Wrong Man

wrong man 001

The Wrong Man by David Ellis

Originally written for Spruce Grove Public Library and published in Spruce Grove Examiner on November 30, 2012.

Today, I am reviewing The Wrong Man by David Ellis, published by the Penguin Group under G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2012, ISBN: 978-0-399-15828-5.

OK, it’s corny to say this, but The Wrong Man was definitely written by the RIGHT man:  I loved this book.  David Ellis has written eight thrillers, several with James Patterson, and his first novel, Line of Vision, won the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best First Novel by an American Author.  The third in his ‘Jason Kolarich’ series, The Wrong Man is a fast-paced, twisty-turny novel full of action and suspense.

Criminal defense attorney Jason Kolarich accepts the case of an Iraq War veteran, now homeless and suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, who is charged with the murder of a young paralegal.  While preparing an insanity defense, however, Kolarich discovers that the paralegal was killed as part of a cover up—and his client is actually innocent.

As Jason Kolarich works to exonerate his client, he runs afoul of a Mob assassin aliased “Gin Rummy”; the Mob itself; and a conglomerate of corporate conspirators who have put an explosive plan into motion.  They are not about to let one lawyer and his team get in their way. Of course, Jason Kolarich is not your average lawyer.

If you enjoy a good thriller, I recommend that you read this book. Ellis’ work is similar to John Grisham, but different enough to command respect in its own right. I will be reading his other books A. S. A. P.