Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Break from Blogging and Reviews

I've got to take a few days off blogging and commenting on blogs. Just too much grading to do. Two full length tests, a quiz, and twenty term papers coming up on Thursday. I hope to be back by the weekend, or next Monday at the latest. I'll leave you with two five star reviews of books I've just recently finished. Won't be much more reading for a few days either.

Cold Blooded, by Bernard Lee DeLeo

An assassin is given the task of killing a woman who is under witness protection. Instead, something draws him to her emotionally, and he takes on the task of protecting her and her tween-aged daughter from a host of murderers. Who better to save someone from assassins than the coldest blooded killer of them all.

This is an exciting thriller, full of brutal action, but not without a sense of humor. The assassin, Nick, is about the baddest bad ass ever. Good characters, good story, good read.


Hallam Collection, by L. J. Washburn

This collection contains two long short stories by L. J. Washburn featuring the Cowboy detective, Lucas Hallam. The first one, marking the first appearance of the character, is just called "Hallam." The second is "Hollywood Flesh."

Hallam is an ex-gunfighter and ex-lawman who now works as a private eye and a part time actor in westerns in the early days of Hollywood. He deals mostly with crimes involving the movie industry. In "Hallam," Lucas must sort out a war between two rival gambling moguls. It reminds me a bit of "Last Man Standing." In "Hollywood Flesh," Hallam runs up against the uncanny in the form of a script writer who has apparently been cursed and is pursued by zombies. Despite the apparent existence of the zombies, it's far more a mystery than a horror story.

I enjoyed both these stories a lot. Straightforward storytelling with an interesting private eye, interesting settings, and considerable action. This is the first of Hallam I've read, but there are at least three novels available about the character that I know of so I will be reading more.
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26 comments:

oceangirl said...

Hello Charles, thank you for the reviews and I guess it is just that time again.

Snowbrush said...

It's great to take a break sometimes even if you don't have a lot of work to do.

Merisi said...

May you accomplish and do all you set out to do during your break! It sounds like you have a heap of work in front of you, good luck with it,
Merisi

Deka Black said...

Nice reviews, and don't exhaust yourself! ;)

the walking man said...

Don't worry Charles relief is coming, president Santorum is going to make sure that no one gets the chance at an education so they won't be snobs. You work load will son enough get much lighter.

Charles Gramlich said...

Oceangirl, yes indeed. Getting close to midterms.

Snowbrush, that's true.

Merisi, I'll be glad when the next few days are over. Thanks.

Deka, thanks, I appreciate that.

Mark, hum, I'm not sure that comforts me, man.

Paul R. McNamee said...

Those look good. I've got a couple of indie self-published Kindle tales creeping up my reading list. I hope to get to them soon.

Voidwalker said...

Everybody has to break at times. Just don't let your break last as long as mine (2 years lol)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Good luck with all the tests and papers!

BernardL said...

Thank you for the great review, my friend. I'm happy you enjoyed 'COLD BLOODED'. I'm right in the middle of 'IN THE LANGUAGE OF SCORPIONS'. I have to say it's the best set of horror stories and vignettes I've read in a very long time. The descriptive nature of the passages and pacing are excellent. I'm glad you put it together. That serial killer story with your warning label at the beginning will chill some spines. :)

Ron Scheer said...

Your to-do list is intimidating. Do what my students do--ask for an extension.

Charles Gramlich said...

Paul, L. J. Washburn is Livia Reasoner, James's wife. You may know Bernard from the blog.

Voidwalker, No, probably not so long in my case. :)

Alex, thanks, man.

Bernard, there's some pretty gory stuff in that one. I used to be more of a gore hound than I am now.

Ron, there's an idea. I probably will be giving back at least one of the tests later than I usually strive fore.

Greg said...

hope you get all caught up. Cold Blooded sounds pretty good, might have to check that out.

sage said...

Take your time, I'm having a hard time trying to catch up, too.

Charles Gramlich said...

Greg, if you like good action thrillers it might be right down your alley.

Sage, a lot of it going around it seems. :)

laughingwolf said...

go on my tbr pile, once i get an e-reader... thx charles

mark, have a look at something i found/posted on my blog, about the [educational] system....

Charles Gramlich said...

Laughingwolf, cool, man.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

You've a full house, Charles. Wish you luck. What's the quiz about? Thanks for the neat reviews.

Charles Gramlich said...

Prashant, it's a quiz on writing issues for my writing class, specifically about library usage.

The Golden Eagle said...

Sounds like a lot of work--good luck with it!

Thanks for the reviews.

Travis Cody said...

Breaks are good things. See you on the flip.

Charles Gramlich said...

Golden eagle, thanks for visiting.

Travis Cody, and neccessary!

David Cranmer said...

I've become a fan of Hallam and L. J. Washburn's storytelling. I have this in the TBR stack.

Good luck grading, Charles.

Charles Gramlich said...

David, yes, some fine storytelling there for sure.

Richard Prosch said...

Hallam is a great character, and I love that era. Be sure to read WILD NIGHT --might be my favorite. Man, grading tests --stay hydrated!

Charles Gramlich said...

Richard, I'll definitely get Wild Night.