For most of my life, I've named Pterry as my favourite author. I was the first in my town/country to read him, and for the last years I've bought hisFor most of my life, I've named Pterry as my favourite author. I was the first in my town/country to read him, and for the last years I've bought his books in hardcover. I still buy his books out of sentimentality, but I wish I would stop.
The worst is that I wish he would have stopped. I was devastated when I learned of his illness and, like most everyone, also mourned all the books now lost. But after the last three or more it's become clear that a bang would have been better than this whimper. He has literally lost his plot now - nevermind that most authors repeat their formulas, and his had been okay-even-when-repeptitive-and-boring because it was humane, now there is no trace of plot left.
The lead seams to be Moist again, although he was indistinguishable from Worde and the others, so it's okay to simply re-use him (is this the second or forth time?), but it's not okay to wipe out everything that made the Patrician my favourite after Death. It's not the brief moments where he is meant to slip and be a bit old, but the countless scenes where he badgers Moist for no reason and with no result whatsoever. Page after page is just TELLing of the same thing again: badger, talk, grease build grease, progress. Repeat. I couldn't even spoil this book if I tried.
It is my own fault for continuing to read, but WTF. Pratchett's books used to give you such a pay-off because the people were genuinely changed IN OUR EYES, but after Feet of Clay there was literally nobody left, every enemy (incl. of the reader) was repeatedly shown in different lights and integrated and it had been rewarding. At least with the goblins there was the addition of some true horror - but that was a few books ago.
The dwarves and goblins as the redeemees again? Even feminism, something else we liked and lauded in Pratchett, gets a bad taste when homosexuality is hinted at as the "worse" option. Another easy win of women over a whole race, oh yes why not, after all the character just won back the whole kingdom as well. Facing no real peril, no matter what the text TELLS you. Just as the dunnikin diver boy eerily faced no threat, so here everyone is so clever and rich and brave and talented, there are just too many of them around and everything works with no back-lash ever! The measly attacks of the grags ... why even bother?
I'm sorry this got long, all I meant to say was the intro paragraph. I'm sorry about Pterry. I had sworn to not read the stolid boring Earth saga, but his other books are just as bad now and I wish the Earth were that magical entity he portrays it as, or narrativum existed, and could make at least something right about this.
But after all those years, he ends up like the hacks, the writers simply going bad for boredom or running out of steam. Pterry might not have done that in the normal course of things. But his books are now weightless nothings, and I'm condemned to those terrible thoughts aka tl;dr: I wish my favourite author had stopped writing.
My gateway to Rendell, whom I had avoided before then (thinking the was boring). I hadn't even seen the movie, and in hindsight her take on m/m mightMy gateway to Rendell, whom I had avoided before then (thinking the was boring). I hadn't even seen the movie, and in hindsight her take on m/m might be slightly problematic, but I was hooked on her Vines from this novel on. *add long old review that -i- hope -i- had actually written and not just dreamed*...more
I have half a dozen of mismatched volumes from the various confusing editions of this series ... I keep forgetting which I read, don't understand theI have half a dozen of mismatched volumes from the various confusing editions of this series ... I keep forgetting which I read, don't understand the complete fall-off from the instense first volume?season and change? of cast? which is a great pity, because Vaughan is definitely the best graphic novelist around, and I remember good things about the original series, so try to get it (lucky Americans: in libraries, I hear) but be vewwy vewwy careful about checking it's not some weird unrelated manga....more
Came to dislike the author Kesey intensely when I read this about 20 years ago. IIRC, I was ready to side with the evil nurse at some point. The hypeCame to dislike the author Kesey intensely when I read this about 20 years ago. IIRC, I was ready to side with the evil nurse at some point. The hype hadn't helped, nor the movie....more
Back when she was still good - unlike w.l., I appreciated the intensity in the early works, despite never once caring for the stupid lord and gettingBack when she was still good - unlike w.l., I appreciated the intensity in the early works, despite never once caring for the stupid lord and getting sick and tired of the religiousnes; she was good until her son took over later ... I'm not sure how I'd see her early works now though, having read them at publication and hated on the last half dozen; I thought I had reviewed all those books somewhere, is Goodreads reccing me different editions like blasted Amazon keeps doing?...more
One or two laughs, otherwise the most tedious of her novel(la)s yet. Still way too long for the complete lack ofHow the Sherif was Won by Anne Gracie
One or two laughs, otherwise the most tedious of her novel(la)s yet. Still way too long for the complete lack of ... anything whatsoever. I had forgotten who wrote it (blamed James for all the "lesbian" lust + despaired at there not being any authors left to read) so boring was the generic sex scene. Fulfills the checklist for the weekly Harlequins of that sort, incl. burning desire for children and rejection of modern life and that silly feminism.
Just awfully repetitively point/plot/needlessly drawn-out boring....more
Gracie was remarkable in managing to copy the spirit of Heyer without stealing everything from her books.
The twisted leg and the unfair trauma as wellGracie was remarkable in managing to copy the spirit of Heyer without stealing everything from her books.
The twisted leg and the unfair trauma as well as the refreshing lack of pastede_in balls made it more akin to Keppel.
But I can't review properly because my overall genre complaint rears its head and roars WHY THE HELL DO THE COUPLES I WANT TO SEE COUPLING NOT HAVE SEX while those I dislike fuck like rabbits? I'll whine enough about the breast fetish with other books, but only kissing, when you have non-innocent characters who need assurance? I wanted to see THESE two intimately and never will *tiny fists of rage*muttergrumpstomp*
After I got stuck in two of the more unpalatable E. James books, and not soothed by some Manga or Pratchett, I skimmed the first few pages of Gracie'sAfter I got stuck in two of the more unpalatable E. James books, and not soothed by some Manga or Pratchett, I skimmed the first few pages of Gracie's first novel. Her two first names alone had put me off her books, but I liked the balance in her writing and have finished half of it now.
While the obviousness and clichè of the "underdog" heroine who is really the only beautiful, intelligent, good and sexy woman, did annoy me, it did less so because the hero behaved only according to those clichés but never as cruel, mean and abusively as all the men in erotic romances do these days. Gracie shows us that inside, they are perfect for each other, so that by the middle of this I don't even know if she's also one of the sexsexsex writers as her Pleasure Seducing titles indicated.
Not so far at least, so far they just liked each others looks and misunderstood each other in an amusingly satisfying way.
Therefore I write this now, during their sad wedding, before the rest disappoints me and I have to rant again :)...more
Bleurgh. Remembering that Metzger was a more old-fashioned Heyer copyist, and that her books might be a bit boring and empty but potentially contain sBleurgh. Remembering that Metzger was a more old-fashioned Heyer copyist, and that her books might be a bit boring and empty but potentially contain some love and affection, I came looking for romance - and found the usual tedious fuck fest. It was harder than studying fiscal economics formulas to finish this thing, even trying to skim endless inner monologues about nothing.
With a gay valet and a fainting dog around, it makes no sense not to use them, but she has nothing to do for them except be a brief tee-hee mention. She wastes 300 unbearably boring pages on utter nothingness, dragging out a non-quarrel through four chapters, straining to find a single reason why the beautiful rich young people should have a problem - there she has to use Heyer again, unable to think of a plot herself, but Grand Sophy rotates in her grave at the sight of this girl retrieving gaming debts. It's gobsmacking but true that she can neither show why her characters should love each other, nor show why they might think the opposite.
Just like William Burroughs said that his Naked Lunch would repell youngsters rather than make them have (more) sex, these novels have turned me into an asexual....more
Surprisingly, this was rather good; the author is deservedly translated into English (unlike most European author). Interesting, gripping, well-paced,Surprisingly, this was rather good; the author is deservedly translated into English (unlike most European author). Interesting, gripping, well-paced, with plots and herrings not as obvious as most thrillers, so that the reader can doubt their own doubts as layers keep revealing. Having the obligatory broken hero be a suicidal female (criminal psychologist) only adds positives to the mix, including a dramatic ending that amused me personally as well as gratified, simply because one came to care for the characters despite/because no blatant attempts were made to invoke sympathy. Though there's bloodshed, it's nowhere near as awful than what has become usual these days; "psychothriller" here does refer to the psychological detecting rather than psychos. Superficially the book might sound like Cornwell's Scarpetta, whom I can't bear, so for now I'll give the author the rare praise of comparing (if not characters or depth then) at least plotting and intent to someone like Walters.
Atrocious, boring, conceited, dumb, flagitious, hateful, ill-made, loathsome, mean, nasty, phony, repugnant, stupid, unsympathetic, vile, worthless -Atrocious, boring, conceited, dumb, flagitious, hateful, ill-made, loathsome, mean, nasty, phony, repugnant, stupid, unsympathetic, vile, worthless - this nothing of a novel isn't even for furries, it might only appeal to fen who think rape is a kink. My real review is five A4 pages long aka TL;DR, short version: do yourself (and your eyes, brains and stomach) a favour and don't read this crap that should never have been published....more
NOTE TO SELF - REMEMBER the ending! A fast funny story along the lines of Ranma ( girl-keeps-turning-into-boy+vice-versa but due to crazy scientist faNOTE TO SELF - REMEMBER the ending! A fast funny story along the lines of Ranma ( girl-keeps-turning-into-boy+vice-versa but due to crazy scientist fathers and finished in vol. 4), but the final pairing of this story was a slap in the face, a sad illogical frustrating choice which I still can't believe, so it might be a disappointment for other readers, too.
Stupidly, I got myself into it again with Hero-Heel....more
Short story by Monette. Much, very much like the two novels I read so far, with one person looking after the other who is crippled and ill - once agaiShort story by Monette. Much, very much like the two novels I read so far, with one person looking after the other who is crippled and ill - once again fingers were cut and ruined, and magic stolen, the treatment making Maur fully insane.
This time the protector is a woman, older than her (former) lover, but it's the same dynamic. The setting is like Heyer's night in a hostelry. Sebastian from the Labyrinth novels is in it, though it is set in Norvena, with locations like Zauberhof as smart references. Agido's sagging breasts make the feminism more clear, but I liked how she pondered that they could no longer revel in her always having all the power and upper hand now that her crippled lover has NONE left. And that genuine non-hateful misunderstanding that brings only great satisfaction once the truth comes out. If it is a kink, I do have a small-disability one, but not one of healing sex, though I realise Tabby did that to MM, and here it seems the same, but then it is done sensibly, just reestablishing a self, tactile confirmation of worthness.
I got interrupted in my reading then, and when I came back the big woman handling the fragile boy didn't appeal to me, the wonderful attrection turned a bit sour. I see how it is political, how it's like Felix with Gideon and Tabby with Mildmay at the end of book 2 - not the same, but I was out of the mood and never am convinced of women raping men.
Which is a great pity because this would have been a perfect story for me, even combats another annoying fanfic trope: "You wouldn't have screamed the way I did. I wanted to tell them that, when they said I screamed like a girl. That you wouldn't have screamed, no matter what they did. But I couldn't even…". I also liked how the heroine twice caresses or wants to the softness of his belly (really just flat soft, not mound) and how they make each other laugh (which had also given me hope for F and MM).
The fence-post reversal of gender roles though I wasn't enjoying because I never liked the men to behave like that with, for and like that with their plucky little women either, nor the little women to react so clichéd, so why should I suddenly enjoy a fictional exchange of pronouns....more
Already in the first book (Melusine), it seemed to me that Monette read and liked Pratchett, perhaps not a usual trait in her type of genre. FocussingAlready in the first book (Melusine), it seemed to me that Monette read and liked Pratchett, perhaps not a usual trait in her type of genre. Focussing on labyrinths instead of prophecies and gods was also well done.
Just like both male protagonists are said to nearly look the same, the second novel features a reversal of positions that makes it basically the same story again, featuring a sick one and a strong one. Mildmay's memories, seeming so pointedly more positive than Felix's though they both had been kept-thiefs, now openly show to have been just the same abuse, even down to the sexual. I found it hard to accept that Felix will never actually be shown exuding that magical charm the author keeps telling me about, but this time round Mildmay has the girly rejection feelings. And Felix is a shitbag to him, out of guilt and other notthatbad stuff, but it's worse than when he was wrongly afraid of Mildmay on the forward journey. The lovely side of this is whenever he realises how ugly other people see his bro, who is beautiful to him even though he also put him down about his grammar and style. The supporting characters are interesting.
Amongst the bad things is Felix having sex with a sunling (and later he'll be with Gideon), and Mildmay having to ignore it. BUT, and I'm not sure if that doesn't make it worse, we only ever see his bad sex, when he's forced and repelled by other men, we never get Felix's pov when he has sex that he wants.
As in book one, the magic keeps being basically not there; they are plagued by diseases of the body and the mind, physical and mental scarring and crippling. And the magic isn't even helping mend bones or anything useful at all ever!
I saw that the third novel features the pov of the woman on the cover, and the fourth has such an ugly cover I shudder to think, but now that both guys feel the attraction I am hooked again, a stupid fish not finding anything but critical points, but not disliking it at all. :)
About a third way in, I really liked it. F and M are together, there's UST and woe, but mainly them together makes it good. Of course I kinda loved Mildmay for a long time, what with being adorably misunderstood heroic scarred not-woobie. I also want the cover, the only one of the series I like - book one was half-cliché (and still not enough much too manly for skinny femme Felix) and the fourth makes me puke with it's macho muscles, but this one looks lovely and is OOP all over the world.
I wasn't surprised they meet not just Gideon but also Marvortian and Bernard again, and just as there seems a little more description in the novel in general, the torture of these guys is actually horrible, like the raped female ghosts and unlike Felix's fate in book 1 (according to author and friend, I'm not normal in that respect though). I liked Gideon only when he's not paired with Felix, but that's even more inevitable once he's crippled! *gnaws frustratedly* Bernard was always oddly appealing. Another mirroring of F&M? The adventure segment of Mildmay risking his neck a third time for Felix's acquaintances had me quivering for him. (Thinking of those tiresome heroes that fight with bullets in them, and him still so crippled and torn, I find the only solution in men complaining much more about hurts, ie. that he's not really that cut-n-banged up; but he's in so much terrible pain constantly and he keeps being sent in and up and out and down)
I'm not sure why they needed the obligation d'ame as well as the many other bonds that already connects the men (well, the plot/arc needs it *g*), but at least it offers more guh and cringe and gives that misleading intro another reason. Mildmay's thoughts, shame nobody really ever hears them, yes, and the self-critical irony, but then I also hope his convincing refusal to have no desire to fuck him is because he's been fucked over, and loving another man so deeply is just a better way of molly anyway.
What I said about sex scenes changes once Felix takes Gideon as his lover, which he did partly in reaction to M calling him out about what he'd done to Mildmay. And how much sexier the brief scene here is than in SGA fic where R was tongueless (though in book 3, Monette/Felix claims he does not like the warm emptyness that clearly arouses him here).
So for the next couple hundreds of pages, I just liked it. The American author annoyingly keeps having people ask each other "how are you/are you okay" and replying "I'm fine" but otherwise I just keep following in hopeful anticipation.
But of course in the last fifth, after Mildmay helping Felix immeasurably, he sends MM out against the lethal Vey, after all the other horror he had sent him into, all the danger, unflinchingly - and with all that love it's odd he never grasps what he asks there. Felix seemed worried about MM at times, but not at all at these lethal moments, and I was so scared for Mildmay, never mind dying, that's not the point. Worse though than even that is how it makes it seem possible the woman gracing the cover of book 3 and getting her own pov will end up MMs partner. As cool as she turned out to be, it is breaking my heart, after I had grown some hope again. *hurting*
I didn't cave in and skim ahead to avoid MMs capture, nor was it impatient anticipation of something good - I had to skim fastforward just to make sure Felix would get out of St. Crelifers again where, instead of fucking following MM, he'd let himself be dragged by Robert for no reason, after days of sitting around stupidly. Yes, I really want to hit Felix a lot and often :)
Finally they are going to rescue the kidnapped Mildmay who usually does the rescuing, and on the occasion of his - not revealed - torture I want to note that I always suspected that MM might have been drilled into heterosexuality by his Keeper. His two cell mates, damaged as they are in mind and body, are still hilarious. I'm torn between shaking terror for MM again (yes, I know he won't die! and that Monette's tortures are usually not graphic) and laughing at them and their relationship to him. Oh yes, Pratchett. And then MM thinking he's no good at thinking anyway, and my heart always aching for him so. And at the apex of me going aaawww Mehitabel and him have loving sex and all my hopes seem crushed again (just not until I get book 4) - and even that is a lie, because M really makes it about affection and helping MM and gnnnnnnnnn Mildmay, damn you!
I spent the next days feverishly failing to get my hands on Mirador, unwilling to trawl reviews, afraid of the implications of Bear's words about gay+straight m/m and of the lack of mention of Mildmay's torture in the first chapters of Mirador, which skips two years of different steady lovers - never before has my whole opinion of books depended solely on the outcome, but it reflects on and changes everything. Either this is one of my favourite books ever, or a coldly calculated prick-tease, random accumulation of pointless little episodes - here's hoping!...more