Latest book you've read

I’ve just read “The Counterfeit Agent” by Alex Berenson. The CIA are pleased to find a new source of information in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, but some people think it’s a plant to entice the US into war with Iran, and bring in off-the-books agent John Wells to look further into it. It’s a good book, decent twists and turns, but finishes without a proper ending.

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I’ve just finished “The Hollow Men” by Rob McCarthy. A police surgeon is summoned to a hostage situation in gets involved in finding out why the young man with the gun has got to a point where this seems like his best option. A decent story with a few twists and turns.

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I’ve just read “The Fireman” by Joe Hill. Millions of people worldwide are infected by a deadly fungus which causes them to spontaneously combust without warning, and there’s no cure for it. One woman finds herself pregnant and is determined to find the rumoured man who can control the fungus and learn the technique before she gives birth. A good story, a bit long perhaps but worth it.

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harry potter

Welcome to the forums, @lambdawinner829.

Which of the “Harry Potter” books was that, and what did you think of it?

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Recently I read a book called Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson.

I thought it was a great book of explaining complex matters in simple terms and it had an outlook on life from an cosmical perspective.

I’ve just finished “The Black Robe” by Wilkie Collins, first published in 1881.

Father Benwell, an ambitious and high-ranking priest, learns the value of an estate which once belonged to the church, before it was confiscated in the sixteenth century, during the dissolution of the monasteries. He is determined to restore the estate and its wealth to the church, and knowing there is no claim in law, sets out to persuade the owner, Lewis Romayne - a young, single man with no obvious heir - to gift the estate to the church. His aim is to convert Romayne to Catholicism, and also to prevent him marrying (and thus producing an heir). In furtherance of his plan, he manipulates unsuspecting people in order to gain friendships and information he can use, and he has no qualms about destroying the lives and happiness of others, if it suits his aims.

I initially found the idea too far-fetched, but as I continued reading, I realised I have come across people who have become so attached to the trappings of their religion that they’ve entirely lost sight of their faith. Indeed, Father Benwell often speaks of the church, but never of God or Jesus. I found myself becoming quite angry with him, over his use and abuse of good people for his deceitful purposes, which surprised me, as I don’t generally get that caught up in a book!

Does he eventually succeed? You can download a free e-book from Project Gutenburg and find out!

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I’ve read two books in the last few days. First off was “Stolen” by Paul Finch. An elderly man goes missing, then a few days later a younger woman disappears while out jogging. DC Lucy Clayburn has to investigate and while doing so discovers that several homeless people have also disappeared and struggles to persuade her superiors that they all may be linked. A good book, I’ve enjoyed this author’s other series of books featuring another detective nicknamed “Heck”, and this new character seems to have a series of their own that I’ll have to look out for.

After that, I read “The Store” by James Patterson and Richard DiLallo. A writer has been working on a new book for ages, and when he can’t get it published, he has to find other ways to support his family, so he gets a job at The Store. The Store started out life selling cheap books, but has then expanded to cover TV, health and all sorts of other things. They move to a company-owned house near to where they’ll be working and find all sorts of surveillance, and discover laws being changed to help The Store become dominant, and decide to write a book to expose it all while being spied upon by The store. It’s a decent enough story, I find his quite variable depending on who he teams up with but this was pretty good.

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I’ve just finished “Shadow of Power” by Steve Martini. An author is murdered shortly before revealing an inflammatory letter to go with his next book, and the police charge a hotel porter almost straight away. Defence lawyer Paul Madriani isn’t so sure they’ve got the right man, and sets out to clear him. A good book, very enjoyable, I might have read something from this author before.

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I’ve just read “Criminal Enterprise” by Owen Laukkanen. An accountant loses his job and sets up on his own, but it’s difficult to maintain his massive house and lifestyle so he robs a bank, starting off small but soon progressing to security van hold-ups. One FBI agent suspects him from the start, but her older partner dismisses it and kills someone else during an arrest that goes wrong. It’s a good book, I’d read another by this author, but the whole “female agent oppressed by her male colleagues and bosses was right all along” is a bit of a common theme and gets in the way a bit.

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I’ve just finished “Twisted Prey” by John Sandford. Someone tries to assassinate a Senator, manages to kill the driver of his car, the Senator thinks that it’s his political rival, and it’s up to US Marshal Lucas Davenport to find out whether that’s true, and if so, prove it. A really good book, I’ve an idea that I’ve read more featuring the character.

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I’ve just read “Graft” by Matt Hill. Set in the near future after some sort of breakdown in society, a man earns a living by stealing cars and dismantling them for parts. He steals a car and finds in the boot a young woman, but she’s been genetically modified by human traffickers from another dimension, and he sets out to track them down and punish them. Or something like that. It bounced around between Manchester and some sort of manor house in another dimension, and between current and recent past. Not my kind of thing, I won’t be looking for any more.

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Great Book. If anyone would prefer an audible version, there is one read by Kenneth Branagh the great actor/director that is excellent.

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I’ve just finished “Before he finds her” by Michael Kardos. Some years ago a man killed his wife, and his daughter is missing presumed kidnapped or dead. She turns out to be alive and in witness protection, but as she approaches eighteen years old she sets out to try to find her father to get his side of the story. A good book, a few twists.

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I just finished the 16th Annual “The Years Best Science Fiction” edited by Gardner Dozois and I must say, these people are hard HARD science fiction. It’s not that the book wasn’t good it’s just — some of the stories I could barely follow owing to the words used. The pyroclastic plains . . . Sulphur was triboelectric . . . You get the gist. What I like about it is reading the stories over again to see how much more of the story emerged in my feeble mind. Chewy. Very chewy.

I’ve just finished “A History of Winning” by Gerry Johnstone. Gerry was the lead mechanic for the Vauxhall Dealer Team during their hey-day in circuit racing in the 1970s and rallying into the 1980s and some of the stories contained are very interesting.

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droopsnoot . . . I don’t think any of us can keep up with you! :sweat_smile:

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What can I say? :slight_smile: I like to read, though I don’t always find as much time for it as I’d like to, especially now the weather is starting to get slightly better.

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I’ve just finished “Narrowing the field” by A.P. McCoy. Set in the world of horse racing (not surprising, given that the author is a former jockey following the lead of Dick Francis) a jockey attempts to take revenge on an owner that he believes cheated his father out of his livelihood. It’s a good enough read, but it’s a bit light on plot, one or two seemingly major things come up that seem to be forgotten later. I’d probably read another of his.

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