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Haven (Bishop/Special Crimes Unit Novels) [Mass Market Paperback]

Kay Hooper
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Haven (Bishop/Special Crimes Unit Novels) + First Prophet, The (Bishop Files Novels) + Shades of Gray
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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 359 pages
  • Publisher: Jove Books (30 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0515153710
  • ISBN-13: 978-0515153712
  • Product Dimensions: 19.2 x 11.1 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 351,991 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Master story teller 15 Jan 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Kay Hooper master story teller.
You do not need to have read the other books in the series as all the books are good as stand alones.
Mystery and suspense that have you turning the pages my only complaint is that Ms Hooper does not write enough Bishop/SCU novels. I devoured this in one sitting.
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4.0 out of 5 stars gentle read 3 Aug 2013
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I found the 'Blood' series of books veering towards the 'dark side' so nice that this book returns to her previous format. Nothing too demanding, just a good read.
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  215 reviews
30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner from Kay Hooper 1 Aug 2012
By Angela Risner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I love LOVE Kay Hooper and her Bishop/SCU books. I wish that she could give us one per month.

This novel finds Jessie Rayburn returning to her hometown, a bucolic small town. Jessie left her home fifteen years ago when she was seventeen after something happened to her, though she can't quite remember what it is. Her sister Emma, two years younger, stayed on and now runs their former home as a bed and breakfast.

Jessie works for Haven, the privately owned company that is associated with Bishop's FBI division. (For those of you who haven't read any of Kay Hooper's books, Noah Bishop and his group use their powers such as clairvoyance, empathy and medium to solve crimes.) She knows that she needs to return to her hometown and resolve her past before she can move on. Emma, meanwhile, has been having nightmares of women being brutally murdered. Thrown into the mix is Nathan Navarro, another Haven operative, whose specialty is locating dead people.

Hooper's books can be pretty grim and gory, but this one, while grim, isn't as gory as those before. I liked the characters and I was surprised at the ending.

Highly recommend.
31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Part One of a Trilogy- Otherwise, Good but with Caveats 1 Aug 2012
By Lola Jane - Published on Amazon.com
If you read Kay Hooper's SCU/Bishop books, then this is a very familiar read and you will probably enjoy it. I did. I'll read the other two entries, too. Two of my main caveats are for readers without a familiarity to Kay Hooper's typical style of thriller and her tendency to write trilogies. I feel the book suffers for being the lead-in for a trilogy, there are some lacks and lags in the plot, and the elements of the book are too familiar Kay Hooper elements- which, to me, feels a little unsatisfying.

It is good, when viewed in a familiar context- Psycho Killers and psychics and ghosts and a lot of references to evil. If you read KH, then you know she can be a little grim, at times. We get a new lead heroine in Jesse Rayburn who is an operative with Haven- the privately owned and operated analogue to the FBI's Special Crimes Unit (SCU) that has popped up in a few of KH's previous books. Jesse returns to her small hometown to investigate something from her past interfering with her psychic abilities. And, that is the gateway to unfolding the mystery. Anyway, without treading over the story, KH delivers a very familiar killer story. That is good and bad. Familiarity is great if that is what you are looking for. But, it also makes the story a little more predictable and less suspenseful.

I'm trying to avoid spoilers because, I think, KH has a very definite story arc going on here. And, I'm going to try not to spoil it with too many facts about the story-line.

The trilogy problem- The book feels a little unfinished and had some uneven pacing. It seems that this book will probably be one in a true trilogy- at least I hope that is the case- because parts of the story felt rushed or were left hanging mysteriously (I hope they'll get addressed in the next books). For example, we find that two of the characters met previously but in mysterious and weirdly shady circumstances. The author definitely left a vibe that THERE WAS MORE TO THAT STORY. But, we didn't get any of that background. Even though it was so odd as to practically demand a back-story (and it didn't feel like a teaser- the two just were like- "Yeah, shady meeting. Moving On.") It rushed the heck out of the process of reader's getting to know these two characters as potential leads. Next, I didn't like the swap of roles later in the book. Because of issues with some characters having a MUCH better characterization and others with a much more shallow characterization, it felt kind of sloppy. Like the shallow character was just slated to get ditched from the beginning so why bother really writing up their character. And, the book crawled at some points. KH really likes to highlight her killers stalking and hunting- so that moves fairly slowly in the wind-up phase of the mystery. But, we don't get the same treatment for our detectives. At least four separate individuals were working on the same case at the same time, yet we don't get as much detective work as some readers may like. They all kind of solved it at the same time from different points- and the readers were the ones left out of those investigations. That is when the book flashes by at the speed of light- the solving the mystery stage. For example, there was a scene where a character figures out her partner knows who the bad guy is. He doesn't tell her but tells her he figured it out because he read a lot of preliminary background on the case and the person's name kept coming up. AND ALL OF THIS HAPPENED OUTSIDE THE STORY. Too much happens outside of the story.

And, the crucial plot twist? Whatever, I don't even want to discuss the non-resolution of that one. I hope that is addressed in books two and three.

And the characters... There were some issues, I felt, with getting to know the characters, as a whole. Like the situation described above, it seems like characters were just plopped in front of you and described but didn't really get all that fleshed out in the story. Jesse and her sister- two important and central characters- were defined as being "not close", "detached", and awkward around each other. So, getting to know those characters and their relationship barely happened in the course of the narrative. It seemed as if because Jesse was the heroine, we were supposed to just like her automatically. And, I really didn't care that much for her. She was secretive, not that nice to her sister, brusque, inappropriately stubborn, and, I thought, not that good of a secret agent that she could behave with all the swagger of not telling anyone anything ever. There was even a little teaser as to Jesse's mysterious past -not the part the book deals with but the other 15 years- didn't pan out and we were told nothing. I thought the sister had a better characterization- she seemed more sensible for the larger part. Again, I think some of these characters will come up in later books but why can't I know more about them when I meet them?

There were some elements that Kay Hooper uses fairly often. An operative going back to their childhood stomping grounds to solve a mystery that's been bugging them, the rural setting, the not-so-undercover back-up. And all the mention of evil and foreboding vibes. Maybe I was flashing on Blood Ties too much. But, it felt like she was setting up something similar here. Like the Big Bad of the overall story arc will be like that creepy preacher from Blood Ties who wasn't just a bad guy but some incarnation of absolute evil who is not limited to normal bad guy crimes but is capable of supernatural nastiness. Everyone who came to the little town commented on how much dread they felt- it just felt like a little overkill compared to the actual story. Except, is this part of the trilogy? We got nothing of the bad guy's motivations- seriously, the book pretty much ended right then and there. So, is there more to him or were we deprived of all the lovely post-investigation explanation?

Again, if you like Kay Hooper, this is a very comfortable read. I enjoyed it. I just hate new series. It means I have to wait to read the rest of the story and that always makes me a little nuts. But, if you are cool with that, then you'll be fine.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars didn't work for me..... 4 Nov 2012
By raine falconer - Published on Amazon.com
I have never read Kay Hooper before so I picked this one up based on the blurb. I loved the premise and the vast potential to that premise but the story fell far too short for me.
The character of Jessie was not likeable enough for me to really care about and I found her lapses in investigative procedure and protocol illogical and unacceptable. I find myself getting very weary of the stereotypical heroine being a young woman with incredible gifts who does EVERYTHING possible to guarantee she's put herself in jeopardy....it strains credibility enough for me to have seriously affected my appreciation of this book.
The description of the killer was sufficiently creepy but too easily figured out. The relationship between Emma and Nathan was strained and begged clarification.
I will probably read another of her books but I wouldn't recommend this one so far.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Salvaged Narratives 8 Aug 2012
By Starchick - Published on Amazon.com
Dear Potential Readers (Spoiler Alert),
If you have been following this series then the premise of Haven may seem eerily familiar to you. Two sisters who share a psychic bond, one of them dies... I can't place the exact title in the series but I know that this was the ending of one her earlier novels. I think it is one of the novel's from the Fear sub-series. Any way, the twist in the narrative was predictable and very annoying as it did not accomplish anything nor add to the plot. The general lack of emotion that accompany's the death of the central agent, from the reaction of her supposedly motherly supervisor to her own sister, leaves one wondering "so what"? There was no emotional impact, her death seems to have been pointless.
Despite the many issues that I had--mainly with suspending my disbelief enough to believe that someone trained by Haven would abandon any semblance of protocol and return multiple times to what they knew was not only an active crime scene but the lair of a serial killer--the biggest one was the slippage in character. While Bishop is secretative and plays things close to the chest, there is no way that he would actively send agents into a potentially lethal situation without properly briefing or coordinating their forces. Bishop's, and by extension Haven's, involvement in the novel was haphazardly written and confusing at best.
At the end of the story I am wondering why, despite all of the ghost that can be seen around the town and in the house, a houseful of psychics did not see the spirits of any of the victims? Why would a spirit choose to make contact with a random minor character like Nellie? Why would anyone with sense follow on the trails of a missing women and then confront the last person to potentially see her alive? Why would any sane person not pass on a message received so mysteriously?
These holes in the narrative ruined this book.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just Okay 16 Aug 2012
By Love2Read - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The story was good, to a point, but the end was just a mess. I won't say too much because I don't want to spoil it, but the end felt rushed and some of it just did not make any sense. I also couldn't understand how a psychic who could sense dead bodies -- and even found one right away -- could fail to find a site with dozens of graves. I mean, really? And the whole scenario of having multiple groups of psychics in the same town, all investigating the same thing (some Haven, some FBI) streteched credulity. Not one of her best books; not even close.
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