Archive for January 23rd, 2012

Tahoe Blowup

Tahoe Blowup by Todd Borg

5 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) Tahoe Blowup is a thrilling mystery about an arsonist who is lighting deadly forest fires at Lake Tahoe. When the fire starter kidnaps Detective Owen McKenna’s girlfriend, McKenna, and his Great Dane, Spot, they have just hours before the killer burns her in a fire so big that firefighters call it a Blowup.

We start with a fire just below Owen McKenna’s cabin. After narrowly escaping, Owen learns that this was planned. A note was sent to the fire department saying that this was in retaliation of forestry fire procedures. We then learned that Jake Pooler was killed in the fire. He has a reputation of being a ladies man, having a bad attitude, being severely in debt, and not being the most popular person in Truckee.

When another note is received, everyone is on pins and needles. Although they try their best, two houses are burned like the note said and another life has been claimed, Joanie Dove. The trouble is Owen cannot figure out the connection between Jake and Joanie. Then Owen starts receiving notes, calls, a burned stuffed dog, and muscle to keep him away from the fire investigation, he goes on alert. But when Street is kidnapped, all bets are off.

I love the Owen McKenna series. There is great suspense. I’m always on my toes and when I think I know who did it, it turns out to be someone else. I loved how the story was wrapped up. I am now on the hunt for the rest of his books. This is one mystery series that you will want to read.

I received this book for free from Book Rooster in exchange for an honest review.

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Iwishacana/Acanawishi by Larissa Hinton

4 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) Where rules are meant to be broken
Anissa is constantly on the run from the police and can’t seem to stay out of trouble.

Secrets are meant to be kept
Until Anissa hides Florence in her bedroom and her mother finds out. There’s only one thing left to do: Send her to Juvenile Cop Camp to erase all of her crimes on her record.

And everything is not what it seems
There’s only one problem: Anissa is innocent.
Welcome to Iwishacana.

Iwishacana is an alternate to our world that is powered by wishes. Basically what you wish for is yours. Anissa lives in both our world and Iwishacana. It seems that she is in trouble in Iwishacana, when the story starts, she is on the run from the police. She mentions that there are drawbacks to wishing but it is not very clear what.

Anissa escapes the police just to come home to get into a fight with her mother about getting into trouble all the time. Not listening to her mother, she goes to Iwishacana and takes an art class there. She then looses a bet and is stuck with Florence, a spoilt guy from Iwishacana. She then sneaks out to go to a party. When caught she is sent to Iwishacana boot camp for criminals.

While there, we learn that Anissa has been framed for the crimes she is charged with. All people in Iwishacana have an inability to wish for certain things except Anissa. Someone has hacked Anissa’s ability and is using it to their advantage. Now Anissa needs to stop that person to clear her name and get out of criminal boot camp.

I really like the concept behind this story. It’s a fresh new idea that has a lot of potential. I can see this easily becoming a series.

Having said that, I will admit that I would have liked more background on Iwishacna. I felt a little lost hitting the ground running with little to go on. I got the basic idea but would have liked to learn more about it, the ground rules behind wishing, and such. I also was a touch confused about the bet that got Anissa stuck with Florence. I might have miss read it, but couldn’t find what happened.

Beyond that, this is a great story that has great potential. This is one to add to your young adult collection.

I received this story from author in a giveaway.

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