I'll say that I've avoided books billed as "romance" for a while now because it has gotten to the point where I can't handle, among other issues, the...moreI'll say that I've avoided books billed as "romance" for a while now because it has gotten to the point where I can't handle, among other issues, the silly euphemism that they use. To me it's like softcore (we're acting like we're doing something but not really). Really? Fish or cut bait. Show me (or in the case of a book, tell me and please leave off with all the silliness. Rod, shaft..what? Are we talking about a man or a car? If you're grown enough to write about sex, you're grown enough to call it what it is. Otherwise, just infer they had a good time and they rocked each other socks off and move to the more important parts of the story.
So, knowing this about me, a friend told me I MUST read Hunter and this was a freebie. Well. Since I would be able to download it and if it's really bad, I could walk away without much investment, I was willing to try. Mostly I thought I was going to get a chance to tell my friend the book sucked and she should read Hearne. So, with nothing to lose, I was in. I didn't realize at first Hunter was a self-published writer. The formatting on the Kindle does have some issues and there were some clues in her writing but overall this was a nice read.
The things I liked: There wasn't really any insta-love. I don't have a problem with insta-love per se, but there aren't many writers who can do it well. No "steamy" sex scenes where I started eye-rolling at the descriptions. Beatrice was a nicely spunky heroine with her own ideas and she didn't scream Mary Sue. She had a her own plans for her life and I was glad they weren't abandoned because she found a man to take care of her. She came across as slightly flawed with some rough patches but not broken looking for a man to glue her together. The world building was interesting. The editing was much, much better than most self-pub. And I'd consider reading her other work.
The downside: Most of Hunter's secondary characters aren't really fleshed out well. She made the major error (imo) of having several characters using the same phrasing. I get that people tend to parrot each other, especially if they're friends. But in this case, they weren't friends and for a writer, this is an easy way to give your character his or her own unique voice and personality. Also she left the story completely opened-end, slightly cliff-hangerish. This is one of the biggest pet peeves I have in the reading world. The story doesn't have to be "finished" but there needs to be a tie-off, so to speak. A place to pause and feel satisfied with the book you just read while waiting on additional installments. A cliff hanger or open ending feels (to me) like a way to try and keep a reader interested. A writer's work should stand on its own merits and his or her talent alone should be what draws me back instead of a cheap hook of no resolution.
That being said, Hunter is several books into this series already so I'd consider the next few books in this series. On any new series, I'd let her get a few books in before I started reading, knowing what I was facing. (less)
because people (who will remain unnamed to protect the guilty) kept posting about it. It had some nice action and the...moreI got sucked into reading this..
because people (who will remain unnamed to protect the guilty) kept posting about it. It had some nice action and the plot moved well. There was a lot of YA cliche going on but I am a sucker for a strong female protagonist. I'm debating number 2 and if I'm willing to pay for it.(less)
I thought this was a really solid effort and I enjoyed it enough that I'll read the next is what is obviously going to be a series.
The world building...moreI thought this was a really solid effort and I enjoyed it enough that I'll read the next is what is obviously going to be a series.
The world building was done really well.I like the the author's take on juju, root magic and hoodoo (which is not voodoo as almost any Southern coastal resident will tell you). I like that the romance in this was not a driving force in the plot. It was a very secondary element. The dysfunction of the family, power struggles, back stabbing hooked me and kept me turning the pages.
After you read enough of genre, things get predictable to a degree and there were some very predictable things for this book but there were a few surprises at the end for me as well.
I hadn't seen any marketing for this book before I read it. I did see some links with Sookie Stackhouse after I read it and I hope the publisher doesn't go full on with that angle. There is nothing really Sookie like in this book and it deserves to stand on its own merits. (less)
I'll admit it. When I picked up this book, I didn't want to like it. It was for a group read and I got dragged into this selection kicking and screami...moreI'll admit it. When I picked up this book, I didn't want to like it. It was for a group read and I got dragged into this selection kicking and screaming. Kicking AND screaming. Like a baby. The strikes against it where numerous, in my very considered opinion. First time author, her subject touched on a complex time of social unrest, she is a white woman writing from a perspective of color. How could she overcome all of that? I knew it was going to be bad.
Although it has some minor issues, it was a thoroughly enjoyable story. Stockett sucked me in and kept my interest, from beginning to end. Not many writers can say they have done that. Skeeter's narrative moved the story along well although I wish there had been more of Aibilene and Minny. The contrast of their characters and how they handled the obvious and subtle forms of racism that surrounded them were believable and kept me up late to find out how their story would end.
So, this isn't the first time I had to eat humble pie and it won't be the last. Mea Culpa. (less)
I still love these books but the big battle scenes at the end just drag sometimes. For this book, it dragged big time. Oberon is my favorite and he is...moreI still love these books but the big battle scenes at the end just drag sometimes. For this book, it dragged big time. Oberon is my favorite and he is usually missing for the big finale, I guess that why it does drag for me bit during these scenes. Hearne can still make me laugh and it was still a fun read.(less)
I enjoyed this enough that I'll pick up the next few in the series. Nice blending magic and real world elements. The hero as a Druid was a change of p...moreI enjoyed this enough that I'll pick up the next few in the series. Nice blending magic and real world elements. The hero as a Druid was a change of pace as well, rather than the standard magic user, vampire or werewolf that have been done so many times before. The only disadvantage to this was I'm not as well read on druid/Celtic lore so I had to run to Google to a few times to get the back ground on some of the gods, goddesses and lore referred.
There several funny moments. I was sitting in the doctor's office waiting to be called back and completely forgot myself and really started laughing a few times. I think I became the entertainment for other peeps waiting with me. (less)