Books to Read After Running

Gone Tomorrow (Jack Reacher, #13) by Lee Child

You can't go wrong with a Jack Reacher book! After watching the Amazon Prime series "Reacher," I decided to go back and read some earlier books in the series to get a good base perspective. This one doesn't disappoint as Reacher is on an early morning subway train in NYC and sees someone blow their head off. Of course, he gets involved as the case had huge Federal/ national interest (it's a little complicated). Reacher is being chased by the NYPD, the Feds, AND the terrorists. Can he pull it all off without getting caught? What do you think!?  A fun read! ****

Clawback (Ali Reynolds, #11)  by J.A. Jance and Karen Ziemba

Got hooked on J.A. Jance with her latest Sheriff Joanna Brady series, "Missing and Endangered." This is my second foray into the Ali Reynolds series having just read, "Credible Threat." Excellent procedurals reminiscent of Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch and Renee Ballard series. Here, Ali tries to help her parents who are victims of a Ponzi scheme and losers of $1.25 million. Meanwhile one of the agents who 'hooked' her parents is found murdered with his wife. Ali and her crew must chase down the real perpetrators and oh by the way, there's a serial killer involved as well. Edge of your seat drama. ****

Billy Summers by Stephen King

My second Stephen King in several months after not reading him for so long. This one was straight forward thriller, not very much horror at all (a slight nod to The Shining with an alleged haunted hotel). Here we follow former Marine Billy Summers who has become a sniper for hire (with some rules - he only kills REALLY BAD PEOPLE). He is thinking of retiring and takes one last job - for $2 million, with $500k up front. The only catch? He has to stay in a rinky dink Alabama town awaiting the extradition of his target. The real story begins AFTER the shot! Billy is among the best snipers in the world, a decorated Iraq war vet, a Houdini when it comes to vanishing after the job is done. So what could possibly go wrong?  Enter Bucky and Alice. And...well you'll have to read it to find out. I have really enjoyed the last two King novels, The Institute and this one, and look forward to reading a few more.

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Mercy Street by Jennifer Haigh

A brilliant novel that tackles abortion, right-wing extremism, and trauma with compassion, insight, humor and a cast of characters who are fully developed, real and complex. This is a must read to understand New England, personal politics, rural poverty, and American extremism.  It is pitch perfect, compelling, smart, and poignant. This will be one of the best books I read all year.

The Violin Conspiracy by Brendan Slocum

A very entertaining mystery about a young Black violin prodigy, Ray McMillan, whose priceless violin – an heirloom from his enslaved grandfather – is stolen. The heist happens just months before Ray is to compete at the prestigious international Tchaikovsky Competition so he must race to find his violin and manage intense family drama over who has rights to it, while continuing his grueling practice schedule. An edge of your seat book with a lot to say about racism in the classical music world.

Vladimir by Julia May Jonas

A timely novel about campus scandal, power and so-called cancel culture. The charmed life of a beloved English professor at a small upstate NY college (think Skidmore) starts to crumble when her husband is accused of decades-old sexual harassment by school alumna. At the same time, her growing obsession with a new professor on campus threatens her own reputation and legacy. The tension builds at a frantic pace, culminating in a wild and dark plot twist.

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