Monthly Archives: March 2013

Review: The Laughterhouse by Paul Cleave

Posted 21 March, 2013 by DLWhite in Reviews, Writers Read 0 Comments

The Laughterhouse Book Cover The Laughterhouse
Paul Cleave
Simon and Schuster
August 21, 2012

rom the internationally bestselling author of Blood Men and Collecting Cooper comes an unforgettable new thriller featuring private detective Theodore Tate.

Theodore Tate never forgot his first crime scene - ten year-old Jessica Cole found dead in 'the Laughterhouse,' an old abandoned slaughterhouse with the 'S' painted over. The killer was found and arrested. Justice was served. Or was it?

Fifteen years later, a new killer arrives in Christchurch, and he has a list of people who were involved in Jessica's murder case, one of whom is the unfortunate Dr. Stanton, a man with three young girls.

If Tate is going to help them, he has to find the connection between the killer, the Laughterhouse, and the city's suddenly growing murder rate. And he needs to figure it out fast, because Stanton and his daughters have been kidnapped, and the doctor is being forced to make an impossible decision: which one of his daughters is to die first


My Review:

Yeah, you saw that right. I must be getting soft in my old age… I used to never give 5 stars, but as I tell my friends, a 4 is really good… a 5 is near or surpassed perfection for me. I am by no means well read or versed in fiction. I just know what I love and I know I can be picky, so if I give it 5 stars and you and I like the same kind of material……GET ON THAT.

So, right. I am supposed to put words here to describe my feelings about this novel and it’s author. I find myself without sufficient words, which I know is a cop out but REALLY. First, as I’ve stated before, I love recurring characters and continuing story lines. I like getting to know a character over the course of a few books and not in 250-400 pages. Theodore Tate is a likable protagonist, one I like reading about.

I find Cleave’s representation of Cole is so complex. He wants to made out as a monster, but he’s not a sick freak. He’s killed 4 people and kidnapped a doctor and his three daughters, but he’s angry that the press wonders if he’s molested the three little girls he’s kidnapped. I alternately empathize with and detest Caleb Cole. In my heart of hearts I feel his pain, but I also feel frustration that he doesn’t listen to reason. He’s made up his mind. The most dangerous folks are those that have nothing to lose.

I am a big fan of buildup, and there’s plenty of it in The Laughterhouse. I could guess at Cole’s motivation, but I prefer a slow burn and unraveling of the story. The novel takes place over two harrowing, frustrating nights, keeping ChristChurch in a powerful, murderous grip and the police force running from crime scene to crime scene, trying to solve the mystery before more people die.

I also like the return to the storyline about Tate’s wife and the surprising events surrounding her illness.

I finished this book around 3am today and I’m STILL pouting about the cliff-hanger ending!!! I have a few other Cleave books to finish (I unintentionally read them in the wrong order, oh well) so there’s just enough time to release a new book and continue the story.

Ahem, Mr Cleave!

View all my reviews

Reviews: Requiem by Lauren Oliver; The Cleaner by Paul Cleave

Reviews: Requiem by Lauren Oliver; The Cleaner by Paul Cleave

Requiem by Lauren Oliver Summary: Now an active member of the resistance, Lena has been transformed. The nascent rebellion that was under way in Pandemonium has ignited into an all-out revolution in Requiem, and Lena is at the center of the fight. After rescuing Julian from a death sentence, Lena and her friends fled to the Wilds. But the Wilds are no longer a safe haven—pockets of rebellion have opened throughout the country, and the government cannot deny the existence of Invalids. Regulators now infiltrate the borderlands to stamp out the rebels, and as Lena navigates the increasingly dangerous terrain, her best friend, Hana, lives a safe, loveless life in Portland as the fiancée of the young mayor. My rating: 4 of 5 stars Review:  This is the 3rd and final in the Delirium series, a book I have waited for a number of months to read. Some of my deep seated wants were granted (I won’t spoil them for you). A couple of loose ends remain, but I guess that would have made it too pat. I’m avoiding including much of the summary and digging too deep into my review because I know a lot of people haven’t read it. Suffice it to say, it is a satisfying end of series novel. Lauren did a superb job keeping the story going without it getting tiresome and repetitive and the addition of characters to keep the story going was at perfect pace. I can’t say that I was as into the love triangle as some of the younger, YA fans were, but the pull between the three involved is well written. Now I’m curious about a character that reappears…I hadn’t planned to read the Novellas, but I just might. Great ending to a great series.     The Cleaner: A Thriller by Paul Cleave Summary: Joe is in control of everything in his simple life—both his day job as a janitor for the police department and his “night work.” He isn’t bothered […]

[Review] The House Girl by Tara Conklin

[Review] The House Girl by Tara Conklin

The House Girl by Tara Conklin My rating: 4 of 5 stars *This review may contain spoilers* Virginia, 1852. Seventeen-year-old Josephine Bell decides to run from the failing tobacco farm where she is a slave and nurse to her ailing mistress, the aspiring artist Lu Anne Bell. New York City, 2004. Lina Sparrow, an ambitious first-year associate in an elite law firm, is given a difficult, highly sensitive assignment that could make her career: she must find the “perfect plaintiff” to lead a historic class-action lawsuit worth trillions of dollars in reparations for descendants of American slaves. It is through her father, the renowned artist Oscar Sparrow, that Lina discovers Josephine Bell and a controversy roiling the art world: are the iconic paintings long ascribed to Lu Anne Bell really the work of her house slave, Josephine? A descendant of Josephine’s would be the perfect face for the reparations lawsuit—if Lina can find one. While following the runaway girl’s faint trail through old letters and plantation records, Lina finds herself questioning her own family history and the secrets that her father has never revealed: How did Lina’s mother die? And why will he never speak about her? Moving between antebellum Virginia and modern-day New York, this searing, suspenseful and heartbreaking tale of art and history, love and secrets, explores what it means to repair a wrong and asks whether truth is sometimes more important than justice. An excellent first publish from a new author that I would read again. I would be interested in seeing growth in the vehicle to push the story forward. I was entirely more interested in Josephine’s story, though there were parts of Lina’s story that I connected with as well. I’m not sure that I have a stance on reparations but I felt its role in this story was rather weak and the coincidental demise of that issue to be to convenient.  I wanted the vehicle for needing to locate Josephine to be stronger… however she made […]