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Showing posts from January, 2010

Cannonball Read 2 #21: Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

In short, Silence of the Lambs is the story of a young, ambitious FBI agent-in-training who teams up with a dangerous and psychopathic incarcerated genius in order to stop a serial killer. The book is mostly from the perspective of Clarice Starling, a young woman in the Quantico training program who wants to become a profiler with the FBI. She is sent by Jack Crawford--head of Quantico's profiling program--to speak with famed serial killing psychologist Hannibal Lector, ostensibly to try and persuade him to fill out a survey for research purposes. Dr. Lector quickly begins a cat and mouse game with Starling, and hints to her that he knows the identity of the serial killer "Buffalo Bill" who is plaguing the FBI by kidnapping and skinning young women. The story continues as Clarice tries to balance using Dr. Lector with being used by him for his own purposes. It also follows the hunt for "Buffalo Bill" and the struggles of his latest hostage.

The book is quite cap…

Cannonball Read 2 #18 - 20: Sookie Stackhouse books 5 - 7 by Charlaine Harris

(I'm pretty sure this format doesn't really measure up to the true Cannonball rules, but since I didn't qualify to get in, who fucking cares?)

These books are crack. CRACK.

There's werewolves and and shape-shifters and faeries (and Sookie might maybe be partly fairy) and one of the faeries is actually her fairy godmother because she's trying to become and angel and Sookie and Bill break up FOR GOOD THIS TIME and Sookie gets the crap kicked out of her and almost dies like five more times and she dates a were-tiger and meets the Queen and perhaps murders somebody and gets kidnapped and meets up with fellow telepath Barry the Bellboy, and there is intrigue and politics and some witches and a guy who accidentally gets turned into a cat and Jason is a werepanther and he gets married and moves out to weird inbred Hotshot and Arlene joins the fellowship and Sam is still hot in a vague non-threatening way and Sookie's house catches fire and there's an assassin and a …

Cannonball Read 2 #17: Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris

While I await with baited breath the arrival of my new Sookie books, I got hold of a book from another of Charlaine Harris's series, this time Grave Sight from her Harper Connolly mysteries.

Harper Connolly, like Sookie Stackhouse, has a dubious gift: after being struck by lightning as a teenager, she has the ability to sense dead bodies and see what killed them. She's found a way to use this talent to make a living, travelling the country with her step-brother Tolliver, locating bodies for both law enforcement and private citizens. The trouble in this story begins when she and Tolliver arrive in the small town of Sarne, tasked with locating the body of a wild young girl thought to have been killed by her boyfriend. Harper finds the body, but doing so sets in motion a deadly series of events in Sarne. It seems like everyone in town is involved somehow, and Harper and Tolliver will be lucky to get out of town alive.

I liked the character of Harper, though I think she will likely…

Cannonball Read 2 #16: Firestorm at Peshtigo: A Town, Its People, and the Deadliest Fire in American History by Denise Gess

In October of 1871, a variety of circumstances combined in an unforeseen manner to create of of the most deadly quasi-natural disasters in American history. On the same night as the Great Chicago Fire, a small town in Wisconsin just north of Green Bay named Peshtigo (as well as the surrounding small villages, woods, and farmlands) was struck by a five-mile wide wall of fire, containing within it flying balls, waves, and tornadoes of flame. Between 1200 and 2500 people died, and 1.5 million acres of land were laid to waste.

The book tells not only the stories of the survivors of the disaster, but also of the men and women who heroically took charge to help out, the barons of industry whose greed made the conditions needed for the fire possible, and the men of the US's fledgling weather service whose warnings went unheeded.

The book is very well-researched, and includes a great many reference notes in the back which add to its informative nature. Although I found the book slightly les…