#5Books: Book recs and Delhi Crime, a Netflix series

#5Books for the week ending 14 April 2019

Recently, I finished watching Delhi Crime, a series on Netflix that was inspired by a crime that shocked India and the world in 2012.

Jyoti Singh Pandey and her friend Awindra Pratap Pandey were attacked on their way home after a movie, and Jyoti was raped. Her injuries, however, were so violent and horrific she never recovered from them and died soon after she was found. (Please note, details of her injuries are at some of the article links I have included in this article). 

The show follows the aftermath of the rape — once the victims are found, and as the police take over and begin their investigation. The real event and Jyoti’s death caused widespread protests and fury in India in 2012 — I remember reading in horror of what she went through — so the show never lingers on that act, on what happened to her. Instead, the show focuses on the police, and their investigation, and relies on their reactions to her injuries to show the audience exactly the effect what she went through had on the toughest of cops.

There are two women that are investigating the case — Vartika Chaturvedi and Neeti Singh. Vartika is a senior police officer leading the investigation and is based on the actual police officer who led the investigation in real life. I’m not entirely sure about Neeti Singh, but I appreciated that they were two different women, at different stages in their life experiencing this case differently — but no less determined to find the rapists. 

This is one of those shows that absolutely difficult to watch and compelling at the same time. Mind you, I have a thing for true crime these days, so that too. It stayed with me long after I’d finished the series. 

And now, for some book recs.

The Bookshop of the Broken Hearted 

Tom Hope doesn’t think he’s much of a farmer, but he’s doing his best. He can’t have been much of a husband to Trudy, either, judging by her sudden departure. It’s only when she returns, pregnant to someone else, that he discovers his surprising talent as a father. So when Trudy finds Jesus and takes little Peter away with her to join the holy rollers, Tom’s heart breaks all over again.

Enter Hannah Babel, quixotic smalltown bookseller: the second Jew—and the most vivid person—Tom has ever met. He dares to believe they could make each other happy.

But it is 1968: twenty-four years since Hannah and her own little boy arrived at Auschwitz. Tom Hope is taking on a batttle with heartbreak he can barely even begin to imagine.

Oh man, that last line just did me in. Tom seems like someone with the biggest heart in the world, but yeah… that last line.

Nocturna

Set in a Latinx-inspired world, a face-changing thief and a risk-taking prince must team up to defeat a powerful evil they accidentally unleashed.

To Finn Voy, magic is two things: a knife to hold under the chin of anyone who crosses her…and a disguise she shrugs on as easily as others pull on cloaks.

As a talented faceshifter, it’s been years since Finn has seen her own face, and that’s exactly how she likes it. But when Finn gets caught by a powerful mobster, she’s forced into an impossible mission: steal a legendary treasure from Castallan’s royal palace or be stripped of her magic forever.

After the murder of his older brother, Prince Alfehr is first in line for the Castallan throne. But Alfie can’t help but feel that he will never live up to his brother’s legacy. Riddled with grief, Alfie is obsessed with finding a way to bring his brother back, even if it means dabbling in forbidden magic.

But when Finn and Alfie’s fates collide, they accidentally unlock a terrible, ancient power—which, if not contained, will devour the world. And with Castallan’s fate in their hands, Alfie and Finn must race to vanquish what they have unleashed, even if it means facing the deepest darkness in their pasts.

Face-shifter is new to me, though I guess, it’s a still a shapeshifter in the end. That Finn hasn’t seen her own face caught my attention right away, and this world, sounds incredibly promising. Of course, what on earth did Alfie and Finn unleash?

Ghosts of Gotham

Irresistibly drawn to mysteries, if only to debunk them, reporter Lionel Page exposes supernatural frauds, swindlers, and charlatans. His latest case is an obsession—at least for an ancient and wealthy heiress: verify the authenticity of a lost Edgar Allan Poe manuscript circulating through New York City’s literary underworld. But the shrewd Regina Dunkle offers more than money. It’s a pact. Fulfill her request, and Lionel’s own notorious buried past, one he’s been running from since he was a child, will remain hidden.

As Lionel’s quest begins, so do the warnings. And where rare books go, murder follows. It’s only when Lionel meets enigmatic stranger Madison Hannah, his personal usher into the city’s secret history, that he realizes he’s being guided by a force more powerful than logic…and that he isn’t just following a story. He is the story.

Now that the true purpose of his mission is revealing itself in the most terrifying ways, it may finally be time for Lionel to believe in the unbelievable.

So this blurb made me go WOW. First, there’s a literary underworld, and Lionel has a ton of secrets, some he may not realise because he is the story?

Saving Meghan

Can you love someone to death?

Some would say Becky Gerard is a devoted mother and would do anything for her only child. Others claim she’s obsessed and can’t stop the vicious circle of finding a cure at her daughter’s expense.

Fifteen-year-old Meghan has been in and out of hospitals with a plague of unexplained illnesses. But when the ailments take a sharp turn, doctors intervene and immediately suspect Munchausen syndrome by proxy, a rare behavioral disorder where the primary caretaker, typically the mother, seeks medical help for made-up symptoms of a child. Is this what’s going on? Or is there something even more sinister at hand?

I have been seeing reviews of a show called The Act, which is based on a real-life Munchausen by Proxy case that ended terribly. God knows when we’re going to see it here in Australia, but that’s what prompted me to add Saving Meghan — not to mention, there’s a solid hint at the end of the blurb that has me questioning everything the blurb says, tbh.

The Don Con

The Mafia comes to Comic-Con and outrageousness ensues, in the new fast-paced suspense caper The Don Con.

A hilarious comic crime thriller in the tradition of Carl Hiaasen and Janet Evanovich, The Don Con. mixes suspense, razor-sharp pop culture satire and author Richard Armstrong’s dry comic style into a delightful cocktail of pure entertainment.

Joey Volpe hit the high watermark of his acting career when he played a small role as a mobster on The Sopranos. If you blinked, you missed it.

But now he’s unemployed, broke and forced to make a living by signing autographs at pop-culture fan conventions, or “Fan-Cons,” for $35 a pop. His lack of income, along with his chronic womanizing, has put his marriage at risk, too.

Joey’s life gets even worse when real mobster Tony Rosetti shows up in the autograph line with a plan to rob the next Fan-Con — an offer Joey can’t refuse. When the heist goes awry, Joey is left with a beef with Rosetti and two long years to plan.

Partnered with a smooth-talking con man, Joey is using all his acting skills on new projects: Revenge. Money. And saving his marriage.

Combining the intrigue of Ocean’s 11 and The Bank Job with pointed comic takes on The Sopranos, The Godfather, Comic-Con, Star Trek, The Sting and nerd culture, The Don Con. is a crime thriller / screwball comedy that will leave readers breathless with excitement and laughter.

This blurb cracked me up so much! A convention, an out of work actor from The Sopranos and an actual Don comes calling! 

So these books have been on my mind — what strikes your fancy?

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