PanMinneapolis Star TribuneTaking a mere six pages to set the scene and introduce the players, Sandford kicks the story into motion ... Sandford’s characterization of Davenport becomes increasingly cursory in each progressive book. His effort here doesn’t even qualify as one-dimensional; it’s more like two-thirds of a dimension ... when you’re on book No. 27, it can be hard to find new ways to say the same old things about your protagonist.
PositiveThe Minneapolis Star TribuneIt’s a weak premise at best...But that’s not Grisham’s aim. He wants to follow Mercer as she drifts from parties to happy hours, talking to writers about everything from the effectiveness of prologues (thumbs down) to their favorite authors (including a nod to Louise Erdrich). Fans of Grisham’s potboilers likely will be surprised by this book’s slower pacing and introspective nature. But at the same time, those fans might be impressed to discover that an author who churns out books as if they were coming off an assembly line clearly has spent considerable time analyzing the craft of writing and the artists who practice it.
MixedThe Minneapolis Star TribuneGrisham is adept at cooking up fast-moving stories, and he does his usual top-notch job of outlining the plot's convoluted legal machinations without turning the narrative into a law school lecture. But as the case progresses, Lacy becomes less and less of a participant, until she's little more than an observer. It's an interesting tale, but it's ultimately missing the virtuous tilting-at-windmills element that typically draws us into Grisham's stories.
PositiveMinneapolis Star TribuneLawn chair, check. Warm and sunny spot in your yard or perhaps the lake, check. Now add a great book to read — and Terry McMillan’s latest, I Almost Forgot About You, complements summer relaxation...At middle age, Georgia has gone bored with the day to day of being an optometrist, living in a big home by herself and dining alone. Adding salt to the wound are her family and friends who constantly — and I mean constantly — ask her why she isn’t dating or doesn’t have a man. This question is repeated so frequently that it raises the question, 'Does a woman need a man to be validated?' This is the only stain on an otherwise pleasant read.
PositiveThe Minneapolis Star TribuneWhile the first book poked at the edges of the genre and the second stretched its conventions, this one blows a hole in the format, interweaving the supernatural and a police procedural ... The first two books in the series stood as King's homage to the grizzled, trenchcoat clad, fedora-sporting gumshoes of the pulp detective classics. And this certainly has moments of that. But as the supernatural element of the plot gains momentum, opening a door to the literary school that King knows best, the story kicks into a higher gear that you don't even sense is there until you're caught up in it. In that way, it's a lot like the suicides that are at the heart of the story.
PositiveMinneapolis Star-Tribune[King's] fans not only tolerate his forays into other modalities, but have come to savor them. And there is much to savor in this collection of short stories that, despite its horror-centric title — the marketing gods must be served, after all — also touches on a wide range of other genres, from drama to humor and even poetry.