book reviews

3 More NetGalley Mystery-Thriller Wins

Here are three more great books available (for free) through NetGalley:

  1. Testimony — from the king of courtroom drama, this one is a little different.
  2. Hunting Hour — a working dog makes all the difference in saving the life of a kidnapped girl
  3. Man Overboard — how does a hacker convince a man who has everything to commit suicide. It’s about cyberbullying.


by Scott Turow

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In Scott Turow’s latest novel, Testimony (Grand Central Publishing 2017), Bill ten Boom retires from not only his law practice where he is a partner in a white collar crime firm, but gets divorced from his wife and children and moves across the planet. His new job with the International Court of Justice will be bringing criminals of high crimes to justice. In this case, it’s the alleged murder of an entire Roma town of about 300 people. Wiped out ten years ago and never brought to justice, it becomes Bill’s job to convict the bad guys, be they military, civilian, or American. To do this, Bill must travel the world, read between cultural lines not always familiar to him, and avoid some fairly clever twists and turns that take the story places I didn’t expect.

The book starts as vintage Scott Turow–no description wasted, filled with emotion and backstory:

“And what about these other structures in the background?” I asked. “Who lived in those houses?” ‘House’ was generous. The dwellings shown were no better than lean-tos, each jerry-rigged from whatever the residents of Barupra had salvaged. Timbers or old iron posts had been forced into the ground and then draped most commonly with blue canvas tarpaulins or plastic sheeting. There were also chunks of building materials, especially pieces of old roofs, which had been scavenged from the wreckage of nearby houses destroyed in the Bosnian War. That war had been over for nine years in 2004, but there was still no shortage of debris because no one knew which sites had been booby-trapped or mined. “The People…”

And Turow–as he often does–brings up those midlife questions probably many of us deal with:

“For all of my success, in looking back I couldn’t identify a moment when, at core, I had felt fully at home with myself.”

Overall, a worthy read that kept me thinking throughout.

–book received free in return for an honest review

Man Overboard (Ali Reynolds, #12)Man Overboard

by J.A. Jance

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

J.A. Jance’s latest novel, Man Overboard (Touchstone 2017), #12 in the Ali Reynolds series, is the story of a malicious hacker who wants to get even with the pain he suffered from his father’s suicide by cyberbullying fragile individuals into killing themselves. He always picks children of suicide victims who have attempted and failed suicide themselves. This works until he selects a victim who’s aunt refuses to believe her nephew jumped to his death on the cruise ship vacation of his dreams. She reaches out to an old friend of her nephew who works for Ali Reynolds and High Noon Enterprises and persuades them to look into the suicide. They do so with devastating results.

Told from the viewpoint of both the psycho who is killing people for fun and the amateur detectives at High Noon Enterprises, this is a powerful story that blends tech with traditional gumshoe hard work. Though the cyber stuff is well-explained, it might be considered just on the edge of too much. For me, though, I happily believed it. I love cyber stories and thoroughly enjoyed seeing what could happen with tech tools that aren’t handled properly.

–book received free in return for an honest review

Hunting Hour (Timber Creek K-9 Mystery, #3)Hunting Hour

by Margaret Mizushima

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

In Mizushima’s Hunting Hour (Crooked Lane Books 2017), Mattie, a K9 officer with the Timber Creek police is called on to use her trained tracking dog Robo to track a young girl who is missing. The 8th grader is found dead and Mattie and Robo segue to tracking the killer. As Mattie’s working this case, the daughter of a friend is kidnapped by one who must be the same as the killer. Mattie and Robo chase the kidnapper knowing they only have a brief time to find the child. An early are the kidnapped and the

I read the first in this series (loved it) and this is an excellent addition. The tension never ends. The details of a working dog are exciting, and Mizushima’s respect and love for all animals shines through with every plot twist.

In murder mysteries, I always try to guess the killer before I finish but this one, I just couldn’t do it. It was that clever. Headline. You’ll never guess the killer.

–book received free in return for an honest review

Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, and the thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and  Twenty-four DaysShe is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer,  a columnist for TeachHUB, monthly contributor to Today’s Author and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. You can find her books at her publisher’s website, Structured Learning.


25 thoughts on “3 More NetGalley Mystery-Thriller Wins

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  5. Yikes! These sound intense! Great reviews, Jacqui and Hunting Hour is one I’m adding to my list of books to read…I just need to try and guess the killer! Wishing you a lovely weekend! 😀❤️

    Liked by 1 person

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