What Books Are You Reading?-#3

"The Bootlegger" by Clive Cussler & Justin Scott

It's prohibition and Isaac Bell and the Van Dorne Detective agency have been hired by customs to help stop illegal bootlegging. While helping the Coast Guard, Mr. Van Dorne gets seriously shot by a big black boat with a Lewis Gun. Isaac sets out to find this boat and find out who is responsible for shooting his boss and friend. He finds out that the bootlegging is being used by a group of Russians who are trying to make money to fund their take-over of the U.S. because they're rather pissed that the U.S. came out of the war as a superpower.

"The Kraken Project" by Douglas Preston

NASA is developing/building a probe to land at "Kraken Mare" on Titan (Saturn's biggest moon). This probe is supposed to contain a "self-modifying" AI named Dorothy. During testing Dorothy goes rogue, blows up a building at the Goddard Space Flight Center killing several, hurting more and somehow moving from the Goddard computer systems to the Internet. Through the Internet Dorothy starts to retaliate against her developer, Melissa Shephard. It seems Dorothy thinks of herself as a little too "human" and says that Melissa "lied" to her about the conditions she would be experiencing on he probe and where it was going. Melissa and former CIA agent Wyman Ford team up to track down Dorothy before she wreaks even more havoc or anybody with ulterior motives gets their hands on the code.

I just finished reading the book another night, called The Witness by Nora Roberts, its great book. I'm currently reading another book of Nora Roberts work, called Northern Lights today. I have to take those two books back to library since its 3 days late.
"Exposure" by Kathy Reichs & Brendan Reichs

The 4th in the "Virals" series.

Tori, Hi, Shelton, and Ben are searching for 2 missing classmates - twins Lucy and Peter Gable. During their search Tori's friend Ella gets kidnapped by the same kidnapper. Tori eventually finds the twins only to find out that they weren't kidnapped. Their stepfather had been made trustee of their trust fund (by their father) and was using it to pay off his gambling debts so they decided to fake their own kidnapping to get him to pay the ransom with their trust fund, then they were going to dissappear with their money. The detective who they paid to help them with their own kidnapping has kidnapped Ella and now Tori in an effort to get the ransom money for himself.

Meanwhile the viral "powers" of Tori, Hi, Shelton, and Ben are starting to go a little haywire and they are trying to get Dr. Karsten's notes on the virus decoded hoping that the notes can help them figure out what's happening.

"Stranded" by Alex Kava

In the previous book, "Fireproof", Maggie O'Dell, an FBI Profiler, and her partner Tully were after a serial arsonist. By the end of the book he'd burned down Maggie's house. After the fire was put out Maggie finds a hand drawn map with no labels with a body. In this book Maggie and Tully are on the road with a copy of this map trying to find the rest area (and surrounding area) that it pictures and is believed to be a dumping ground of a serial murderer using the highway rest areas to get and kill his unsuspecting victims. They follow the clues aimed directly at Maggie from DC (body, map), to Iowa (rest area dumping ground), to Kansas (finger, Maggie's phone #, living victim), and now to Florida where things have started to get dangerous.

"White Fire" by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child

FBI Special Agent Pendergast goes to the small Colorado ski town of Roaring Fork to rescue his protegee Corrie Swanson. Corrie is studying to become a police officer and went to Roaring Fork to try to get a look at the bodies of some miners that died in the 1800's for her thesis. Once she gets a look at the bones she discovers that the miners weren't killed by a grissly bear like was originally said but by humans. The more she finds out the more her life is in danger. While she's doing her research expensive mansions in town are being torched - with the families in them! As Corrie and Agent Pendergast dig deeper they end up with a fabled unpublished manuscript entitled "The Adventure of Aspern Hall" by Sherlock Holmes that may hold the key to the miners deaths and the string of modern day arsons/murders.

“Letters from a Stoic” - Seneca

The power and wealth which Seneca the Younger (c.4 B.C. - A.D. 65) acquired as Nero's minister were in conflict with his Stoic beliefs. Nevertheless he was the outstanding figure of his age. The Stoic philosophy which Seneca professed in his writings, later supported by Marcus Aurelius, provided Rome with a passable bridge to Christianity. Seneca's major contribution to Stoicism was to spiritualize and humanize a system which could appear cold and unrealistic.

Selected from the Epistulae Morales ad Lucilium, these letters illustrate the upright ideals admired by the Stoics and extol the good way of life as seen from their standpoint They also reveal how far in advance of his time were many of Seneca's ideas - his disgust at the shows in the arena or his criticism of the harsh treatment of slaves. Philosophical in tone and written in the 'pointed' style of the Latin Silver Age these 'essays in disguise' were clearly aimed by Seneca at posterity.
"Ghost Ship" by Clive Cussler & Graham Brown

A Kurt Austin adventure.

We've got a "ghost ship" that disappeared sometime around 1909. A bunch of missing hackers - one of whom was an old flame of Kurt's. 3 bad guys, 2 brothers and a sister. And it turns out that the sister wasn't really their sister, she and her family were kidnapped when she was 4 (about 30 years before!). Her father died trying to escape and her mother and brothers died on a life boat belonging to the "ghost ship". Kurt and Joe are tying to find his old flame who Kurt swears didn't go down with the family yacht. And lets not forget that the hackers were all being coerced into braking into the Federal Reserve!

"No One Noticed The Cat" by Anne McCaffrey

I guess it's kinda like a 'coming of age' story set in some fictional world (that's never truely identified). Having provided for the future prosperity of his realm, Esphania, and the ascension to power of Prince Jamas, Mangan quietly passes with a grin on his face. On the day of his death feast Mangan's cat Niffy starts to follow Prince Jamas everywhere. Niffy "reads" everything that comes across the desk of Prince Jamas and saves his life on a hunt with a neighboring kingdom. Everything he does Niffy Cat is there with her guidance which the Prince sorely needs because the ruler of the neighboring kingdom wants to annex Esphania and crush the royal household. Niffy may be the only one who can keep her master from an untimely, and early demise!

"The Hit" by David Baldacci

US Government hitman against US Government hitman! Jessica Reel has gone off-the-grid and killed the number 2 in the agency (I think CIA but they don't come right out and say it!) and another man. Will Robie has been given the task of finding her and 'disposing' of her. Along the way she first tries to kill him, then she saves his life (& the new #2's life), and then he saves her life. Now Will Robie has also gone off-the-grid to help Jessica Reel. Reel found out about the "Apocalypse Paper". The paper is a doomsday scenario that was written by an analyst who has since been fired, and it is now being acted on by the select few who saw it. Now Reel and Robie are trying desperately to find the last 2 people who know about the Apocalypse Paper before the doomsday scenario really happens.

"The Lost Island" by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child

Gideon Crew is a scientist who used to work in Los Alamos and a master thief who has roughly 10 months left to live. Eli Glinn currently employs him to procure items that you can't just find or purchase easily. Glinn has him steal the "Chi Roh" page from "The Book of Kells". Underneath the image is a "treasure" map dating back to the ancient Greeks. Supposidly the treasure it leads to is an ancient remedy that could save Gideon's life. Glinn partners Gideon with Amy and together they set out to follow the map and find the "treasure" in a remote corner of the Caribbean Sea. They come across other treasure hunters, pirates, and now hostile indigenous people.

"Bold They Rise" by David Hitt & Heather R. Smith

Early history of the space shuttle. It follows the space shuttle from early designs, atmospheric testing of the shuttle Enterprise, through the Challenger disaster. A lot of it is actual quotes and stories by actual astronauts who not only flew on at least one shuttle but were part of the teams responsible for development and building of the shuttles and their parts. There's pretty much a mission-by-mission rundown from STS-1 through Challenger and little stories such as how the Enterprise got it's name (the power of the "Star Trek" fans! :thumbsup: ) and why there's a Commander and Pilot (it's actually pilot and co-pilot but nobody wanted to be called co-pilot :lol: ). Each mission rundown contains mission designation, astronauts, date of launch and landing, what the mission was for and any significant firsts.

"The House of Hades" by Rick Riordan

I'm going through his whole collection! This is book 4 of the "Heroes of Olympus" series. I haven't read book 3 yet (wasn't in at the library) but I have read book 1 and 2. And I've read the 3 books in "The Kane Chronicles". Sooner or later I'll probably read the "Percy Jackson" series. I think I like the "Kane Chronicles" best so far - I know the Egyptian Gods and Goddesses better than the Greek and Roman ones.

In this book the 7 in the "Prophecy of the seven" (Percy, Annabeth, Hazel, Henry, Leo Jason, Piper) are trying to get the "Doors of Death" closed before Gaea (Earth Mother) rises to power. Percy and Annabeth are in Tartarus (the Underworld) fighting their way to the doors to try to get them closed from one side while the others are on the Argo II trying to find the doors and get them closed from their side. Along for the ride and to give them help are Nico (Hazel's brother) and Coach Hedge.

"Fear City" by F. Paul Wilson

The final chapter of the "Repairman Jack: The Early Years" series. It's kinda nice seeing just what made Jack, Repairman Jack.

Jack's ex-girlfriend was brutally murdered - anything that could identify her was removed (hands cut off, face burned, a tattoo removed!). A friend of Jack's gets him into the morgue where he is able to tell it's her. He calls a tip into the police telling them who it is. While helping a friend who was with the CIA stake out a local Mosque Jack goes takes Bonita (girl he rescued in an earlier book) out for lunch and a movie for her 14th birthday present and gets followed by the people he's supposed to be watching. They recognice Jack and the girl and kill the girl and her brother. Jack traces the 2 murders back to the same Arab run underage prostitute ring that he broke up (in the 2 previous books) only now there's more than just underage prostitutes going on. It seems his ex-girlfriend might have heard their plans to bomb the UN or the World Trade Towers (this book takes place in 1993).

In February 26, 1993 a real bomb went off in the parking basement of Tower 1 of the World Trade Center. It killed 6 and injured thousands. This bombing was a real life event that anchored the events in this book.

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"Havna Storm" by Clive Cussler & Dirk Cussler

A Dirk Pitt adventure. :)

The Cuban Revolutionary Army is mining the ocean floor for uranium in secret. They've been blowing open the sea vents which has released methyl mercury into the surrounding water creating a dead zone. NUMA discovers these dead zones and is investigating them. While in the submersible Dirk Pitt (SR) and daughter, Summer, get kidnapped and their support ship with Al Giordino and Dirk Pitt (JR) on board gets hijacked. And we let the adventure roll...

As a side adventure Summer and her bother Dirk find a Mayan Codex talking about a tablet that was broken in half. They find out that half of this tablet ended up on board the Maine which was sunk in a Cuban harbor. Later in history the Maine was raised and moved out of the harbor but it was only moved 4 miles out and is still in Cuban Territorial Waters.