Let me say right up front that is not the kind of book I enjoy, or would pick on my own. I am reading it for my RL mystery group. I have it at 2 starsLet me say right up front that is not the kind of book I enjoy, or would pick on my own. I am reading it for my RL mystery group. I have it at 2 stars, but really want to give it a 1.5, but can't figure out how.
I found it to be very fluffy, and pink. It is one of those books where everything is perfect (even the problems and flaws), and nothing real ever happens. Even the murder has no depth or reality to it. The whole book has the romance-y pink plastic tinge that I dislike. All the guys are hot and can't make an appearance without the main character drooling over them.
I didn't like the main character much, she was stupid (who goes window shopping on the way to work), spineless (she agrees with everyone publicly and doesn't say or stand up for what she wants) and is basically the standard helpless goofy chic in peril, who through luck and gumption comes out on top . The goodies were perfect and the baddies a cliche. The only interesting character is the cop who seems to have real flaws. The choice of suspects was limited and the mystery was rather weak as though it was an afterthought and not the reason for the story.
The writing style was not bad, but the mechanics of constructing the story were not done well. I kept being jolted out of the story.
Maggie is window shopping and it rains. She races to her car, which is unlocked, can't get her keys out by the time she gets there, so she gives up on the keys and runs back to the windows, which now have awnings.
She describes counters that have oiled tops and frilly skirts ?
Standing in line at a food shop she looks at the owner who is standing behind the counter and knows that her skirt goes to her ankles and the type of shoes and socks she is wearing ? The owner has an old fashioned filly apron on, but Maggie can read the saying on the T-shirt it covers ?
At the start of the book it seems to be spring/summer, then it changes to fall/October, but throughout she alternates with leaves on the trees, and/or on the ground. She talks about the leaves turning color in the fall, implying it was something to see when it happened, not that it was the current condition.
This is not a series or author that I will continue reading....more
**spoiler alert** I found this book to be a slog. I really didn't care much about the characters, in fact I disliked the main narrator, and I didn't c**spoiler alert** I found this book to be a slog. I really didn't care much about the characters, in fact I disliked the main narrator, and I didn't care what happened to them for most of the book. I didn't find the search or mystery to be compelling reading.
I thought the book was way too long, and didn't really need the teenage daughter as the narrator. The book had several levels, but only the past ones: the father's search, and his mentor's search were interesting. I didn't feel that the issue of the mystery book was ever really explained in enough depth to make it valid, and I thought the ending was weak for an almost 700 page read.
My problem with the main narrator was that she was not really needed to tell the story. On top of that she was way too passive. She never challenged her father to complete or continue his story. It was all too pat, that every time the book got interesting, the story would break off. It was a cheap and obvious manipulation by the author to create cliffhangers. It backfired. I wasn't hooked, only made more and more angry by the waste of my time.
The other issue with the narrator was the set-up at the start of the book. The way she tip-toed around the whole concept of Vampires. Later in the book it could be explained, but not at the start. As a vampire Aficionado I know that back in the 70s, the subject exploded. There were books, magazine articles and TV programs about them, about Dracula, about Vlad Tephes (SP?), about the legends, and the historical truth. But though the book was set in the 70s, the narrator acted like Vampires were a dirty secret.
It seemed to me as I read that the author was trying to rewrite or update Dracula for the modern day. She did reference Dracula and Bram Stoker, so she wasn't pretending that his idea never existed. She was taking his story, indirectly, and moving on after the events in London. But it was boring.
The slow dragging pace of the story also seemed as though she was trying to emulate the 19th century style of writing. I did like her writing style, it was smooth and she did a good job with the information, the description, the new locals and the minor characters. Her story telling was also not bad, once the daughter was pushed into the background. She just didn't construct an overall story arc that was worthy in terms of the journey and the ending to carry such a long book, and such an investment in the readers' times.
I am a complete-ist and almost always finish a book I start. I also own the book so I feel the need to read it because I want to recoup my investment. Finally the book was a choice for my real life fiction book group so I needed to keep reading so I could discuss it with the others.
I can't say that I would read anything else by her. I wouldn't reject it outright, but would be very cautious and test read it before committing my time and money. ...more
**spoiler alert** I wanted something fun to read so I read this book. It struck me as the male version of all the recent urban fantasy that has parano**spoiler alert** I wanted something fun to read so I read this book. It struck me as the male version of all the recent urban fantasy that has paranormal romance in it (female POV). Also a bit like the dinosaur-among-the-humans book I just read.
The main character is a PI, and he is a vampire. Before that he was a soldier in the war in Iraq where he was turned into a blood sucker. The case takes him to the nuclear facility at Rocky Flats to investigate an out-break of nymphomania among the government workers there. Besides this mystery there are vampire hunters, rogue government agents, and aliens.
The book has funny moments and a few crude ones. The writing is good and the characters are OK. He doesn't do anything really new with the vampire, though they aren't beautiful. He has short, pot-bellied vamps, so that is a bit of a relief. It is the start of the Felix Gomez series...more
**spoiler alert** I enjoyed the second book in the Felix Gomez series both a little more, and a little less.
As I mentioned before this book seems to b**spoiler alert** I enjoyed the second book in the Felix Gomez series both a little more, and a little less.
As I mentioned before this book seems to be the male version of the paranormal romance/chick-lit that is so popular now. Someone on Goodreads called it dude-lit, and I will concur. (and steal the word).
While chick-lit is centered on romance, dude-lit seems centered on sex, and not always in a good way. The first book used the word vagina more than a medical text, it only makes a couple of appearances in the this book. I think Acevedo goes out of his way to brush up his dude credentials by making a lot of the sex without feeling, no emotional entanglements. It makes the book a bit crude and the characters rather too slick.
The continuing crude-ness is one of the reasons I like this book a bit less than its predecessor. What is forgiven in a first book, becomes annoying in subsequent books. It also seems to be a bit of a slog in terms of reading. There are a lot of plot threads and clues, but not well connected or used. Felix just keeps going round and round, not getting it, and having adventures. The adventures seem to be the reason for the book. They are all nicely cinematic. But at some point you begin to tire of the same clues, and people, and similar adventures (shootings, explosions, fights, chases).
Why I like the book more than the first one, is there is more meat to the story, and the main characters are better fleshed out. Felix shares more of his early years, and seems to again find an impossible love (which he then reduces to mechanical sex). He has an interesting side-kick in the book, Coyote who is well done. I hope he appears in future books. I also like the crow messenger of the Araneaum, the vampire power structure.
I also enjoy more of the Hispanic flavor of the book. Its a new vampire twist for me. We again have vampires who are not just buff and beautiful, but older, short, fat, and balding.
Acevedo also uses the idea of auras and vampire eyes and vision to make them both more interesting, and also more vulnerable. They have great power when they can use them, but they are so strange that they need hide them behind contacts and sunglasses, and are not always able to be used.
While the first book was about the danger of aliens, this book seems to be about the danger of humans, even to vampires. The actual mystery, and the people who are involved are just thin plot devices to let Felix go barging around, having cinematic adventures. He is investigating the death of a porn star, and the porn industry, and the Araneum wants him to find out if vampires in the LA nest have revealed themselves to humans and are working with them, instead of enslaving them as chalices (read permanent blood donors).
There is a lot of action, innuendo, and body parts, and a touch of humor. Felix explores the greed, and evil of both humans and vampires with too much money and no soul. Those who in business, politics and religion will take advantage of others for their own power and financial benefit. I will read the next one....more