Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Death Instinct by Jed Rubenfeld

The Death Instinct

The Death Instinct by Jed Rubenfeld

It's a bit intimidating reviewing a book after having read an earlier review in the New York Times. But I'll give it a shot because I very much enjoyed Jed Rubenfeld's The Death Instinct and want to share this with you.  If you're curious about what the Times said about the book - head over here.  Another interesting tidbit about Jed Rubenfeld - he's married to Amy Chua of the Tiger Mom fame/author of Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mom.

Jed Rubenfeld's The Death Instinct is a detective novel set in 1920s New York.  World War I is over (but the Roaring 20s haven't arrived) and factories are closing, unemployment is rampant and Prohibition has just been imposed.  In this environment of desperation and dissatisfaction, Wall Street explodes.  New York City suffers the most destructive and deadly terrorist attack on US soil.  Enter the war veteran and wealthy Boston Brahmin Dr. Stratham Younger, his colleague NY detective Jimmy Littlemore, and the beautiful and mysterious French physicist Colette Rousseau.

In The Death Instinct, Rubenfeld has taken a historical event that remains unsolved - and created an engrossing tale of injustice, mystery, and adventure.  Stratham, Colette and Jimmy follow the evidence from the streets of New York to the corridors of power in the Capitol to devastated Vienna and the war torn villages in Europe.  They meet with Sigmund Freud, Madame Curie, and JP Morgan's right hand man, Lamont - and take readers on an engrossing and satisfying escape.

ISBN-10: 1594487820 - Hardcover $26.99
Publisher: Riverhead Hardcover; Reprint edition (January 20, 2011), 464 pages.
Review copy provided by the publisher.

About the Author:
Rubenfeld was a summa cum laude graduate of Princeton University (A.B., 1980) and a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School (J.D., 1986).  He also studied theater in the Drama Division of the Juilliard School between 1980-1982. Rubenfeld clerked for Judge Joseph T. Sneed on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in 1986-1987.
After his clerkship, he worked as an associate at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz and as an assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of New York.
He joined the Yale Law School faculty in 1990 and was appointed to a full professorship in 1994. Rubenfeld has also taught as a visiting professor at both the Stanford Law School and the Duke University School of Law.
In September 2006, Rubenfeld's first novel, The Interpretation of Murder, was published by Henry Holt & Co. It was a number one bestseller in the United Kingdom, and it sold over a million copies worldwide.
Rubenfeld is married to Yale Law School professor Amy Chua, author of the books World on Fire and Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. They have two daughters, Sophia and Louisa.

Red Door Academy is calling for cut & color hair models in NYC

Red Door Spa at Elizabeth Arden on 5th Avenue has a relatively new program where they offer cut and color at reduced rates for hair models.   Every Tuesday evening, they take 10 to 12 hair models. For  a significantly reduced fee ($30 for a cut and  $50 for color/highlights/balayagey),  you can have a cut, color and blowout by a junior stylist at Red Door.

Red Door also holds advanced classes for master stylists and colorists every month.  For the same fee, you can have a cut, color and blowout.

There are still spots available to be one of the hair models models in their Advanced Cut/Color Class at the Red Door Academy in NYC! Dates available: Monday, March 28th & Tuesday, March 29th. Email to hold your spot today!  Or call Chloe  at  Red Door Academy at 212.546.0200.

Red Door Spas
691 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10022

Friday, March 25, 2011

An Affair Without End by Candace Camp

An Affair Without End (Willowmere)

An Affair Without End by Candace Camp

The blurb:
When Oliver, Early of Stewkesbury, asks the dashing Lady Vivian Carlyle to ensure that his American cousins meet the cream of London society, he doesn't anticipate the danger she will pose to his own self-control.  Thrown into intimate contat with the lovely lady, Oliver finds he cannot stop thinking of Vivian -- of her wit, her smile, and her beauty.  And when Vivian, who has sworn never to subject herself to the bonds of matrimony, boldly suggests that she and Oliver become lovers instead, her scandalous proposal is temptation indeed!  But with an alarming series of jewel thefts rocking London, the ever-outrageous Vivian insists on trying to discover the perpetrator despite Oliver's admonitions.  And when a bold lady steps into danger, it is a gentleman's duty to protect her at all costs.  What neither Oliver nor Vivian can anticipate, however, is that the ultimate cost may be both their lives.

An Affair Without End is the latest in Candace Camp's Willowmere series.  The main characters are the feisty and unconventional daughter of a duke, Vivian Carlyle; Vivian's  brother  Gregory, the bookish and reclusive fifth marquis of Seyre;  four American sisters who are cousins to Lord Steweksbery - particularly of interest is the least conventional of the four, Camellia; Lord Oliver Steweksbery whose family dates back to the 11th century and is always circumspect, proper, and occasionally fusty. 

While Oliver is meant to represent the stolid and rule bound point of view, he borders on the tedious. It may be that he is fully representative of the times, but it is very easy to see how Vivian finds him frustrating.  Sometimes it's difficult to imagine why she carries a torch for him at all!  Vivian comes across well - we can picture her high spirits, her beauty, the freedom that she'd become accustomed to as the only daughter of an unconventional duke.  Her close friendship with Camellia and her kindnesses to the people around her make her the one to cheer for in the book. The romance between Camella and Gregory is fun and adds much to the book.

Overall, An Affair Without End is a fun  read. But even as Oliver was falling in love with Vivian,  it was easy to keep a certain emotional distance from him and his charms.

ISBN-10: 1439117993 - Mass Market Paperback $7.99
Publisher: Pocket Star (March 22, 2011), 416 pages.
Review copy provided by the publisher. 

About the Author:
Candace Camp is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 60 novels, including her Willowmere series for Pocket Star Books --  A Lady Never Tells, A Gentleman Always Remembers, and An Affair Without End -- as well as the bestselling Regency romances The Courtship Dance, The Wedding Challenge, and The Bridal Quest.  She lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and is the mother of young adult author Anastasia Hopcus.  Learn more about Candace at

Clarity by Kim Harrington

ClarityClarity by Kim Harrington

The blurb:
In Eastport, a tourist town on Cape Cod, lives a family of freaks.  My family.  I'm a psychic.  My brother's a medium. My mother's a telepath.  Tourists love us.  Townies scorn us.  We live in a grand Victorian house with no permanent ghosts, and we use the first floor for our family business readings.  Not the bookstore kind.

Set in present day Cape Cod, Clarity is the story of Clarity "Clare" Fern, a gorgeous high school sophomore with psychic powers during the summer that a murder changes the town. Murder in a vacation town during the summer season might just scare away the tourists - bad enough for local businesses not to recover.  While the Mayor and the Chief of Police are working double time to catch the killer, the Mayor's son (a.k.a. Clare's ex-boyfriend) is willing to take unusual measures to solve the case.  He's put together a task force of sorts and has asked Clare to work with the Gabriel, a high school senior and the dreamy Chief of Police's son, to try to find leads.

 Clare isn't all that excited to work on the case.  Particularly when Gabriel shows his disdain for her skills.  But the investigation takes a turn and Clare must hunt down the killer to save someone she loves.

Clarity combines humor, mystery, and romance - and introduces us to Kim Harrington, a fresh and fun voice in YA fiction.

ISBN-10: 9780545230506 -  Hardcover $16.00
Publisher: Point; 1 edition (March 1, 2011), 256 pages.
Book received through the Amazon Vine program.

About the Author:
Kim Harrington lives in Massachusetts with her husband and son. When not writing, she's most likely reading, watching one of her favorite TV shows, or fantasizing about her next vacation.She has no psychic powers and is cool with that.  Clarity is her debut novel. Visit her at

I joined the Amazon Vine program less than a week ago. Clarity by Kim Harrington is the first book that I've reviewed through this program.  A big thank you to Amazon!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Silenced by Brett Battles

The Silenced: A Novel
The Silenced: A Novel by Brett Battles

The blurb:
Professional "cleaner" Jonathan Quinn has a new client and an odd job: find and remove the remains of a bod hidden twenty years ago inside the walls of a London building, before the building is demolished.

But Quinn and his team are being watched.  Suddenly caught in the cross fire between two dangerous rivals, Quinn must unravel the identity of the body and why it still poses so great a threat even in death.  Because a plot stretching from teh former Soviet Union to Hong Kong, from Paris to London, from Los Angeles to Maine, is rapidly falling apart.  And Quinn hasn't been hired just to tie up loose ends -- he is one.

I've always loved thrillers so when offered the chance to read Brett Battles' latest book, I grabbed it.

Jonathan Quinn is a flawed hero that draws you in.  He left the military with a stellar record and instead he owns and runs a "troubleshooting security firm." As a mercenary, he tends towards jobs that are beyond the jurisdiction and legal powers of government agencies.  He also takes on particularly difficult and urgent jobs.  Quinn is selective with his clients - but things being what they are, he's been forced to undertake unpleasant jobs.  This time, a preferred client has called with a seemingly simple job - and offers him a ridiculously high fee.  There's clearly a catch, and by the time it becomes apparent, Quinn's closest secrets are about to be revealed.

The Silenced is a story of loyalty and friendship demonstrated under deadly conditions.  In this latest novel, Battles discloses personal details of Jonathan Quinn's life, fleshing out his early family life.  We see him at his competent best, as a loving brother, and as a fiercely protective family man.  It's a joy to read about him strike back when men attack his family.

ISBN-10: 0440245672 - Mass Market Paperback
Publisher: Dell (April 5, 2011), 416 pages.
Review copy provided by  Kaye Publicity and the publisher.

About the Author:
Brett Battles lives in Los Angeles and is the author of 4 novels in the acclaimed Jonathan Quinn series: The Cleaner, which was nominated for a Barry Award for Best Thriller and a Shamus Award for Best First Novel; The Deceived, which won the 2009 Barry Award for Best Thriller; Shadow of Betrayal; and The Silenced He is currently at work on his first novel.  Visit his website at

Monday, March 21, 2011

Free New York Continuing Legal Education Seminar on March 29, 2011

Just wanted to share this free CLE seminar on "Understanding a Title Report" on March 29, 2011. Guest speaker: Antonio Vozza.  Sponsored by Tradition Title Agency ( at the Condor Hotel, 56 Franklin Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11205, the seminar provides 2 credits towards general practice.

There are 2 sessions: (1) complimentary breakfast at 7:30 am and (2) 8-10 am session  OR (1) 12 noon complimentary lunch and (2) 12:30-2:30 session.   Contact: Karen Keating at 631-328-4410