"A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khaled Hosseini
(from inside flap)
A Thousand Splendid Suns is a breathtaking story set against the volatile events of Afghanistan's last thirty years--from the Soviet invasion to the reign of the Taliban to post-Taliban rebuilding--that puts the violence, fear, hope, and faith of this country in intimate, human terms. It is a tale of two generations of characters brought jarringly together by the tragic sweep of war, where personal lives--the struggle to survive, raise a family, find happiness--are inextricable from the history playing out around them. Propelled by the same storytelling instinct that made The Kite Runner a beloved classic, A Thousand Splendid Suns is at once a remarkable chronicle of three decades of Afghan history and a deeply moving account of family and friendship. It is a striking, heart-wrenching novel of an unforgiving time, and unlikely friendship, and an indestructible love--a stunning accomplishment.
MY THOUGHTS: This is a wonderful book, I couldn't put it down. I was so intrigued by all the lives in this story. Mariam, who is born out of wedlock, and a shame to her family. Mariam is wed to a man 3 times older than her, more or less against her will. But Mariam makes the best of her life with Rasheed. Laila, her whole family is killed during a rocket attack. She is taken in my Mariam and Rasheed. But Rasheed wants her for his second wife. Laila agrees knowing she is already pregnant with Tariq's child. To keep her child from being born a bastard she agrees to the marriage to Rasheed. Aziza is born and is raised at Rasheed's child, but he knows she isn't his child and threatends Laila with abandoning her to the streets. Laila becomes pregnant again and a son is born, Zalmai. Which makes Rasheed very happy. As the years go along Mariam and Laila become friends out of necessity. To protect each other from Rasheed's increasing brutality.
There is so much conflict in this book, things that we as women take for granted. Freedom to dress, work, go to school, raise a family. These things that are an everyday thing for us can sometimes lead to a beating or worse for the women here. Very heart-wrenching book!!
"E is for Evidence" by Sue Grafton
(from the inside flap)
It was the silly season and a Monday at that, and Kinsey Millhone was bogged down in a preliminary report on a fire claim. Something was nagging at her, but she couldn't pin it. The last thing she needed in the morning mail was a letter from her bank recording an erroneous $5,000 deposit in her account. Kinsey had never believed in Santa Claus and she wasn't about to change her mind now. Resigning herself to a morning of frustration, she phoned the bank and, assaulted by canned carols, waited on hold for an officer to clear up the snafu.
It was with something less than Christmas cheer that Kinsey faced off only minutes later with California Fidelity's Mac Voorhies. Voorhies was smart, humorless, stingy with praise, and totally fair. He was frowning now. "I got a phone call this morning," he said, his frown deepening. "Somebody says you're on the take." Suddenly the $5,000 deposit clicked into place. It wasn't a mistake. It was a setup.
MY THOUGHTS: Kinsey on the take, I don't believe it! Kinsey takes herself on as a client to find out what the $5,000 is about. It has something to do with the Warren/Woods fire she is investigating, but she can't quite put her finger on. As she starts digging, an old case comes into light, of a supposed suicide of an employee of Warren/Woods. Where all the forensic's gathered came up missing. Then the person who wrote the policy for Warren/Woods comes up missing a well. Where did he go and what does he know about all this? An explosion that kills a woman and puts Kinsey in the hospital leaves lots more questions. And to top it all off Kinsey's ex-husband shows up asking for forgiveness. So are all these occurrences connected or just coincidences? You will have to read the book! Sorry can't say anything else without giving it away.
"The Narrows" by Michael Connelly
(from the inside flap)
FBI agent Rachel Walling gets the call she's dreaded for years: the Poet has returned. Years earlier she tracked the serial killer who wove verses into his crimes. Rachel has never forgotten the Poet--and he has not forgotten her. Former LAPD detective Harry Bosch gets a call, too: from the wife of a friend who has recently died. The death appeared natural, but ties to the Poet make Harry dig deep. So begins the most frightening and masterful novel Michale Connelly has ever written. Bosch finds himself teamed with Walling, at odds with the FBI and in the path of a ruthless murderer. What follows is a taut mystery that swerves from the vistas of the Nevada desert to the Las Vegas strip to the corners of Los Angeles. Through it all, Bosch works at his new found life as a father, balancing his deep love and sense of mission with his profound awareness of evil.
MY THOUGHTS: This is the 3rd or 4th book I have read from Michael Connelly. He is an awesome writer. He doesn't leave out clues, they are all there and if you are following the story, you will most likely figure them out. But he always leaves a few that you won't get until the very end. And the end of the books are always wrapped up so there are no questions, which I really like! So if you want to read a good murder mystery with some good evidence to lead you this is the book for you. If you have never read a book by Michael Connelly, you should!! You don't know what your missing!!