Synopsis: In the series debut The Testing, sixteen-year-old Cia Vale was chosen by the United Commonwealth government as one of the best and brightest graduates of all the colonies… a promising leader in the effort to revitalize postwar civilization. In Independent Study, Cia is a freshman at the University in Tosu City with her hometown sweetheart, Tomas—and though the government has tried to erase her memory of the brutal horrors of The Testing, Cia remembers. Her attempts to expose the ugly truth behind the government’s murderous programs put her—and her loved ones—in a world of danger. But the future of the Commonwealth depends on her.
Review: Cia knows what happened during The Testing, which clouds her view of everyone around her. But she must still act like she doesn’t know, so that no one catches on. Even her relationship with Tomas is strained. The Testing was brutal, but her studies and a possible internship push Cia to a breaking point.
Independent Study is an exciting sequel that is impossible to put down. My hopes were set high after last year’s The Testing, and thankfully it lived up to my expectations. The characters are vivid, and the story is complex and captivating. Though there wasn’t the Hunger Games-like trial in this installment, there was still plenty of suspense, danger and intrigue. So far, this dystopian trilogy is thrilling, intense and thoroughly enjoyable. Don’t miss this incredible series.
Synopsis: After he fails to save a stranger from being mauled to death by a bear, a young mercenary is saddled with the baby girl the man died to protect. He leaves her with a kindly shepherd family and goes on with his violent life.
Now, sixteen years later, that young mercenary has grown up to become cynical sword jockey Eddie LaCrosse. When his vacation travels bring him back to that same part of the world, he can’t resist trying to discover what has become of the mysterious infant.
He finds that the child, now a lovely young teenager named Isadora, is at the center of complicated web of intrigue involving two feuding kings, a smitten prince, a powerful sorceress, an inhuman monster, and long-buried secrets too shocking to imagine. And once again she needs his help.
They say a spider in your cup will poison you, but only if you see it. Eddie, helped by his smart, resourceful girlfriend Liz, must look through the dregs of the past to find the truth about the present—and risk what might happen if he, too, sees the spider.
Review: Eddie LaCrosse and Liz decide to take some time off and enjoy a small town festival, when Eddie suddenly remembers a baby he left there 16 years ago. We get a quick view of Eddie as a younger man in the introduction of the story. And Eddie and Liz’s relationship has grown to a comfortable, confident one – where neither gets petty or jealous. Though, they are still very much in love and tease each other mercilessly.
The humor is one of my favorite things about this series. A favorite line was when Eddie said he killed a bear, someone asked “Single-handedly?” Eddie says, “No, I used both hands.”
He Drank, and Saw the Spider is the 5th Eddie LaCrosse book. Though, as always, the story is standalone. Only Eddie’s relationships carry over to the other novels. This latest installment is full of humor, mystery, intrigue, and magic. With clever characters and an exciting plot – it was completely engaging and entertaining from beginning to end. This series is not to be missed.
Synopsis: Crossing Lines is NBC’s new action-packed global crime drama. The series taps into a unit mandated by the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate cross-border crimes and ultimately bring global criminals to justice. “Crossing Lines” is set in the world’s most exotic locales, where an elite team of eager cops work to solve the most notorious international crimes.
Through globalization, many countries have been opened and barriers removed to ensure easy trade, travel and cultural diversity. However, this openness has given opportunities to criminals looking to exploit the system and ultimately threaten our global safety. As Europe has become a “safe house” for criminals eluding law enforcers, a special kind of law enforcement team is needed to handle specific ongoing crimes on a global level. “Crossing Lines” is the story of one such team, made up of five international cops, headed by Captain Daniel. The team – comprised of individuals who have little in common – must learn to live and work under the most dangerous and potentially deadly conditions. Housed in an unused storage section underneath the ICC, this mismatched team faces bureaucratic, jurisdictional and cultural obstacles while traversing continents in pursuit of justice.
Review: William Fichtner plays Carl Hickman, a former New York cop and a brilliant detective. Marc Lavoine is Louis Daniels, the head of this new team of international cops based in Europe. Donald Sutherland plays Michel Dorn, an inspector in the International Criminal Court and confidant of Daniels. And the rest of the team consists of German policeman Sebastian Berger (Tom Wlaschiha), Italian Europol sergeant Gabriella Pession (Eva Vittoria), Irish detective Tommy McConnel (Richard Flood), and French detective Anne-Marie San (Moon Dailly). The characters slowly develop throughout the season. Thankfully, Hickman gets most of the focus as his character is the most interesting and complex. But the others have their dark sides and secrets as well. The cast and their chemistry is what first drew me in to this series. There are a lot of crime dramas on TV, but this quickly became my favorite. For those, like me, who enjoy science fiction, there’s even a tech guy (Berger) with gadgets that are futuristic and unique.
Crossing Lines was a surprising and fantastic new series that shouldn’t be missed. Based in Europe, this diverse team gets to travel across borders to hunt dangerous criminals. The stories are gritty and intense. And with only 10 episodes in the first season, it’s over too quickly. Unfortunately, it aired this summer and no one I talked to had ever heard of it. The marketing was terrible here in the US. Thankfully, it was more popular overseas and is picked up for another season. Though there is no news when/if NBC will air it here in the States.