First a few disclaimers are in order...it's been awhile since I've read anything and even longer since I've written a review.
That being said, as I beFirst a few disclaimers are in order...it's been awhile since I've read anything and even longer since I've written a review.
That being said, as I began Dead Ever After it occurred to me just how much I loved this series in the beginning. Yes, the plot has gotten stupid and Sookie has gotten judgmental and perhaps Harris should have wrapped this whole thing up years ago. So many of the little details and characters are lost on me, and I considered doing a reread of the entire series before starting this one, but that was sure to leave lots of bad feelings. It seemed best to take this book for whatever she wrote it to be, leave the past in the past and make a clean break from Sookie, Bon Temps and the sup world.
Surprisingly, Dead Ever After isn't that bad. Maybe because my expectations were so low. Or because my memory of the past books is so foggy. Perhaps it really is a step up from the more recent books in this series. Regardless, Harris actually did a decent job of integrating Sookie into a life and a routine without drama. It was a good way to wrap up the series and it is easy to imagine how life will go on for Sookie and the rest. Whether we readers agree with the outcome, isn't solid closure the best thing we can ask for at the end of so many books? Even if it isn't closure I necessarily agree with...it's closure.
Remember way back in Dead Until Dark we met Sookie Stackhouse... and awkward girl with a bizarre gift, few friends and never had a boyfriend? Now, years and books later Sookie has come out of her isolation, made some great friends and has had some sexay adventures. Even if she has grown intolerant, judgmental and is sometimes more than a little stupid...it's fair to say that she has a much more well rounded life than the one she started out with. So, hey... character development and what not. Despite what each of us wanted from these books, Sookie has gotten some life (and lurve) experience, she has gained some friends and has made a place for herself in the world.
I think it's fair to say we all fell a little (lot) in lurve with Eric after Dead to the World. In recent novels a lot of us (myself included) were pretty angry with the turn of events. But...what does Harris owe us fans in regards to her works? While reading this last installment it occurred to me that she may have had other ideas in mind all along. A series this long, sure there is a lot of filler and bs thrown in. But I can't believe that she didn't have a general idea of where the series was headed and what kind of life, and man, she wanted Sookie to end up with in the end. Again, my memory is foggy...so perhaps it's just been so long since I've read about the good Eric or perhaps I've forgotten just how angry I was after the last books.
Am I happy with Sookie's choice?
Let me say that I am unhappy with the way it was presented. The inside cover has a picture of Sookie surrounded by Eric, Sam, Alcide, and Quinn (remember him?) As if all of these guys are vying for Sookie's affections. But they aren't. And they haven't been, not really. Furthermore, after a book filled with so many passionate love interests, we are treated to a pretty boring conversation about relationships and what Sookie and her mystery(?) guy are looking for. Stuff like I was wild in my past and am now ready to settle down. Awesome, settling. That's like, so romantic. There were no speeches about the lurve and the passion. Just statements about wanting a solid and practical relationship. *Yawn* (So not the reason I read these books!) Said relationship talk is followed up a few pages later with a lurve scene in which the guy, "...plunged in." Soon after the plunging (clogged toilet anyone?) "...we slid against each other like seals" When it was over, Sookie remarked, "I feel like I just plowed the back forty with a team of mules" So if your idea of sexay reading involves plunging, fat water animals and hard physical labor then you will be thrilled with the future of Sookie's love life. Hrmm....
But closure. Harris did give up closure, whether we like it or not. Actually the thing which upset me most was Bubba's absence. Despite his affinity for cats, I love me some Bubba and look forward to him in every novel. Sadly, he wasn't here. I guess Elvis has....wait for it....left the building!
Blood Warrior started out promising. Unfortunately, it went the way of most urban fantasy. Alexa is a super special gal who is surrounded by hotties wBlood Warrior started out promising. Unfortunately, it went the way of most urban fantasy. Alexa is a super special gal who is surrounded by hotties who want more than friendship and women who are bitches. *sigh*
What I enjoyed about this self-pub is that H.D.Gordon has created a unique world. In addition to the standard vamps and weres this book includes Warriors, Libras (who provide balance for hot-headed warriors) and half vamp/half demon Lamia's. There is an interesting political and social system in place, in this book we get a glimpse at a city where everything may not be quite as nice as it at first seems, as well as a village of outcasts who apparently serve as blood donors for the vamps.
This being a self-pub, I was able to look past spelling and grammatical errors. What I couldn't look past was the bad writing.
His grin widened. "Because there is a party tonight over on the south side of the city." Tommy took my hand and kissed it. "Would you like to go?" Jackson tossed his arm over my shoulder, earning a smirk from Tommy. "What kind of party?" he asked. "One for cool people, so obviously you're not invited," replied Tommy. We all laughed, because this was the kind of exchange we had grown used to between these two. I think they had begun to consider each other friends, and even though they would never admit it, they were kind of similar in personality
So, you see rather than show the reader that Tommy and Jackson frequently engage in not so witty banter, we are simply told that this is what they do. Others may be more forgiving, but this is one of my biggest pet peeves. We are also presented with absent adults, teenagers given freedom to do as they desire, a blonde who is a bitch for seemingly no reason (to complete her slut shaming she wears tight, revealing clothes and is fairly unattractive underneath her gobs of makeup) and of course Alexa is super special and gifted. (Even though she doesn’t know it)
What is worse, so much worse than all of the above is Alexa's emotional depth, or rather, lack thereof. Blood Warrior begins with Alexa being a normal loner teenage girl living with her eccentric mother and can-do-no-wrong little sister. Fairly quickly into this story Alexa learns that she is not human, nor is her sister, mother or best friend. People die, Alexa must leave the life she has always known and discovers an entirely new society. She has no thoughts, no emotional reaction or inner monologue to any of this other than to at one point muse to herself, "What have I gotten myself into." The first real angsty, emotional statement we get from Alexa is when she is mulling over her feelings for one of the multiple sexy dudes vying for her attention. Well, let me back up... Alexa instinctively saved the Queen of magical people from a bomb, sexy dude insists that Alexa is actually the one in danger and (despite her protests that she needs to find her little sister) whisks her away to his cabin in the woods. Reading this, my thoughts were: Why the bomb? Was the Queen the target or Alexa? Is this city and society normally so violent? Is Alexa's little sis okay? What happens next? But Alexa is not nearly so inquisitive. She merely swoons over the sexiness of sexy dude and wonders why she has such strong feelings (um, she just met him mere days ago) and whether he will kiss her.
In the end, Alexa's bizarre emotional reactions are what killed this story for me. Cool world ~ plus. Bad writing, standard UF elements ~ negative. But a main character who experiences life changing events and is seemingly unaffected by them? No way. People who enjoy action and adventure may like this story. But anyone looking for character development, growth or a thought-provoking novel should skip this one. ...more
Even if it's bad... It is! ...at least there is smut. Even bad smut is entertaining Or so I thought.
BesidEh, it's only a dollar how bad can it be? Bad
Even if it's bad... It is! ...at least there is smut. Even bad smut is entertaining Or so I thought.
Besides, it's only 118 pages. Surely I can make it through something so short Actually... I couldn't, can't. Ciana Stone has an interesting idea of vamps being aliens and having fertility issues. The problem is, rather than writing a story about said blood sucking aliens, she apparently wrote a paper about them. That is, this "story" is all tell and no show. In addition, the characters have the personality of a cardboard box and the sex scenes are just... painful.
"His thrusts became more urgent and forceful and her cries deeper but he would not gentle his movements. Nor did she encourage him to do so. This was mating at its most primitive. Here was the moment he'd waited for. Her complete surrender. Now she would become inextricably his."
Oh yeah, talk boring to me.
After the initial excitement of purchasing a Nook... and then discovering the ridiculous price of most ebooks, along with the fact that there are many more deals on Amazon than there are on Barnes and Noble... I've decided to be adventurous and read more self-pubs and inexpensive stuff. Granted, not everyone is a ridiculously talented Susan Ee, but there must be other gems out there. And, at the same time I have to acknowledge the fact than in these self-pub and unknown author adventures there are going to be many more duds than there are great finds.
After reading the first in this series, Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side, I enthusiastically rated it four stars and wished there was a sequAfter reading the first in this series, Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side, I enthusiastically rated it four stars and wished there was a sequel. While I still stand by the four star rating, the sequel... didn't pan out. I think the problem is that Fantaskey is not a serious issue writer. What made Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side work is that it didn't take itself to seriously. It was light, snarky and fun. Jessica Rules the Dark Side is another matter though.
Here we deal with some heavy situations. Royalty, political intrigue, backstabbing, jealously and murder are only a few of the more serious issues in this book. Note, I didn't say "addressed" because they weren't addressed. They were simply there, as a part of the story. Normally, I read books and lament that a heroine is far to heroic. "No teenage girl would really act that way!" I may have to take back all of my complaints, because in this book Jessica (otherwise known as Princess Anastasia) acts just like an insecure, teenage girl who is in over her head. When the going gets rough, she hides out in her room, sleeps, and lets others take charge. Way to go, Jessica Anastasia!
I remember not caring too much for Jessica in the beginning of the first book, but warming up to her as the book continued. Here, I simply didn't like her at all. As I said, Jessica didn't "rule" the darkside. She imitated a turtle (view spoiler)[ Until a series of events made her realize she needs to get over herself, suck it up and act like a queen. Then we see a rather dramatic character change. Well, we don't see it. But we are told it has happened :P (hide spoiler)] Jessica's bff Mindy Sue is an even worse character. Willfully ignorant, written to have bad diction and grammar... why is the bff always a perky, fashionista who is slightly dumb? Female protagonists never have a bff who is strong, interesting or worth looking up to. Fortunately Lucius saved the day with his awesomely hilarious combination of stoicism and dramaqueen. Raniero, although an implausible combination of vampire badass and hippy surfer, was another welcome character. Without the guys, this novel would have been unbearable.
So why was this novel so bad? It is a 300-plus page who-done-it. I figured out the "who" around page 100, and the "why" somewhere around page "200". A lot of this novel involved me not being intrigued by the plot or the mystery, but by the poorly explained details of royal vampire life in Romania. For example, how does Jessica get cell reception in an isolated castle in the hills of Romania? (I can't even get decent cell reception in rural Ohio!) It is plausible that the Romanian castle kitchen really stocks Häagen-Dazs? Do so many centuries old, out of touch with the modern world Romanian vampires really speak English? If Jessica is royalty shouldn't she have a tutor? Or a maid to help her learn Romanian custom? Granted Lucius is royalty but he is really able to rule over vampires hundreds of years older and wiser?
You see... rather than over think the novel, I was busy over thinking all of the insignificant details. Despite it all, I have to say I am still a fan of Beth Fantaskey. But I will avoid her future work unless it stays firmly in the realm of light and fluffy. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
The Radleys is an amazing, quirky and thought provoking story. It features (what else?) the Radley family, struggling to live as normal a life as posThe Radleys is an amazing, quirky and thought provoking story. It features (what else?) the Radley family, struggling to live as normal a life as possible in small town England. Like every family, the Radleys have their skeletons in the closet; in this case they are all “abstaining” vampires. But this book is about so much more than vamps. It is about abstinence and gluttony and maintaining a healthy balance between what you desire and what you need. It is about self-confidence vs. insecurity and jealousy. It is about accepting who you are and what you can live with. And of course, The Radleys is about family bonds, and all of the guilt and dysfunction that can accompany them.
Author Matt Haig wrote an incredibly fast paced book with multiple points of view and brief one to two page chapters. Normally, this is a writing trick which causes me to lose interest within pages. Here it is not a trick, but a tool which Haig has used to tell a well-rounded tale and keep the plot moving. This is a book I can’t recommend enough. Those of you who are sick of vamps or wary of the paranormal shouldn’t be put off. Although this is an awesome little vamp story, it really can’t be described as such. As I said, The Radleys is about so very much more than vamps. I loved the ideas put forth in this book and definitely plan on reading more by Matt Haig. ...more
After a brutally slow beginning, A Perfect Blood may end up to be one of my favorites in this series. One of these days I may even write a proper reviAfter a brutally slow beginning, A Perfect Blood may end up to be one of my favorites in this series. One of these days I may even write a proper review for it! ...more
Have you ever taken a look at the sheer number of books Richelle Mead has produced since first being published in 2007? In case you haven't, the numbeHave you ever taken a look at the sheer number of books Richelle Mead has produced since first being published in 2007? In case you haven't, the number is seventeen. Seventeen books in the past five years! And that count doesn't include shorts she has written for anthologies. My point is simply that I believe this author, who has an amazing talent for creating unique, believable characters and awesome dialogue has spread herself a little thin.
Bloodlines should have been a fun supplement to the Vampire Academy world. Perhaps, since it is told from Alchemist Sydney Sage's point of view, a look at some many well known Moroi and Dhampir characters through fresh eyes. But it isn't. Bloodlines picks up not too long after Vampire Academy left off. Remember that rule stating a Moroi ruler must have one surviving family member to retain the crown? Opponents of Queen Lissa have made an attempt on her sister Jill's life, prompting Lissa's supporters to hide Jill in an unknown location until the law has been changed (to state that a person can still be a Moroi queen, even if they are the last member of their family.) Makes sense so far, right? I thought so, too. Until reading the following:
Jill's secure location is sunny Palm Springs (because who would suspect a vampire of hiding out in such a sun filled location?) Jill is to attend a human boarding school with Eddie as her guardian. Sydney will be Jill's roommate at school. A new character, Keith, who has a past with Sydney is another Alchemist along for the ride (clearly he is here to create drama. But since he does not attend the school and lives off campus in an apartment, I'm not sure what his "offical" role in this operation is.) Adrian and a new Moroi named Lee are not attending the boarding school, but they are nearby and frequently are a part of the actionfun story.
This is the first thing which killed Bloodlines for me. Why the fuck not hide Jill in a secure, private location?? With guardians having access to her 24/7, personal tutors to continue her Moroi centered schooling, feeders readily available and no forced regular exposure to the sun? Maybe even Alchemists nearby to monitor the situation, ready to swoop in and clean up if things get out of hand? After all, Jill's hiatus is only expected to last a few months, so why the fuck enter the human world at all? Especially a section of the human world so highly monitored as a boarding school? Why send teenagers to protect teenagers? And Eddie as Jill's guardian? For reals? As a male, he enrolled in the school as her "brother" but of course as a guy he doesn't share a room with her. They don't have the same classes. So what is the point of him being there? Shouldn't her guardian be a female who can at the very least be her roommate?
And why send an Alchemist at all? I realize that at some point in Vampire Academy the role of the Alchemists was explained. But I still don't get why these people who feel so strongly that all vamps and Dhampirs are evil go to such great lengths to protect them. What is even more perplexing is that at the beginning of this story Sydney has gained the disapproval of the other Alchemists because they believe she has become too friendly with Moroi and Dhampirs. Let's see... a teenage girl has become too friendly with the teenage enemy. Why don't we fix that by making the girl spend lots of unsupervised time with the enemy! Surely that will teach her a lesson! *bangs head to desktop*
Lots of decent books have a ridiculous premise. However, I gave up on this one around page 150 because I still don't know exactly what the plot of this novel is. There is a small story line around magical tattoos, and the inevitable drama amongst all the teens. I am assuming that there are many mysteries to be revealed later on in this series because Mead has dropped a ton of hints. For example, halfway through the book, we still don't know why Sydney despises fellow Alchemist Keith. Abe Mazur (did I spell that right?) makes vague statements to Adrian, a new human character at the boarding school clearly has more to him than meets the eye... and I am over it. Presumably, the majority of the people who choose to read Bloodlines are doing so because they are a fan of Mead’s work. Yet instead of respecting her readers and letting the characters and story line stand on its own, she has to leave multiple teases throughout the book. That isn’t a bad technique for the beginning of a series, but for the spinoff of a six book series?
As I said, the book’s plot is fairly non-existant thin. So that, combined with the author withholding information and an unbelievable premise has turned this into a DNF for me. It’s a shame because the world Mead created with Vampire Academy is amazingly entertaining and complex. I can’t help but wish that Mead would devote herself to just one series, and spend a fair amount of time writing and re-writing and honing one book at a time. Her novels have so much potential but always end up being just short of fantastic. Unfortunately, Bloodlines is the worst one I have read so far. This is a series which I will not continue. ...more
Meh. This series started with so much potential. Possession had a decent beginning and the writing and characters were consistent with The Turning, unMeh. This series started with so much potential. Possession had a decent beginning and the writing and characters were consistent with The Turning, unfortunately the novel very quickly delved into the realms of paranormal soap opera. In a matter of days, people fall into the sort of lourve that makes them plead, “I’ll kill my own granny to save you! Your hemorrhoid pain is my pain! If you die then I will eat nothing but boogers until I also succumb, because not only can I not live without you, but I must suffer for every second that I am alive and you are dead!!!” Or, something like that. Maybe I’ve just been with my husband too long to remember the intense passion of new love? Nah ;) In addition to the proclamations of undying love between relative strangers, the cast of characters is fairly small. Much like a soap opera, they are so wrapped up in each other’s lives that we never get a chance to become exposed to much else that is occurring in the vampire world. In fact, the story takes a backseat to the drama as well. Unless, the drama was intended to be the story…
Either way, I am finished with this series. It’s a shame, because I do like the writing and the characters, especially Cyrus. But I was a bad, bad girl and peeked ahead at the reviews and recaps for the last two installments of this series and there appears to be nothing but more of the same. Had the drama been scaled back, relationships been allowed to build slowly, and the (apparently secondary) plot of the vamp world, the were world, The Movement and the Soul Eater been further explored; this would have been an awesome series. Unfortunately, as it is, it just isn’t my thing. ...more
Dear Sookie, You know you are one of my oldest friends, right? I love our yearly visits at your old Stackhouse family home, sitting on the porch, soakDear Sookie, You know you are one of my oldest friends, right? I love our yearly visits at your old Stackhouse family home, sitting on the porch, soaking up the sun and drinking iced tea. It’s great to live vicariously through you and hear about the most powerful and sexy supernatural beasts falling over themselves to flirt with and please you. And Eric…. Mmmm =) Anytime you want to tell me all of his dirty little secrets and every sexy thing about him that is okay with me.
But here’s the thing, Sookie. You tend to ramble. A lot. Don’t get offended. I love hearing you talk and visiting Bon Temps with you. But our time is limited. And as much as I love hearing all those mundane details of your life, I really wish our time together could be used more wisely. Your life is so exciting, and so many fascinating things happen to and around you ~ I’d much rather hear about your supernatural activities than the particulars that went into preparing for Tara’s baby showers.
The next time we meet, it would be awesome if you stuck to the more important facts. Don’t get me wrong, I love hearing you talk about brushing your hair and cleaning the kitchen. But if you can’t bring yourself to edit those little fine points in favor of the bigger ones, perhaps you could convince Charlaine Harris to allow us more pages to visit?
Even so, I did enjoy our time together and am looking forward to seeing you again next spring. Hopefully you and Eric will get more alone time and you can tell me everything. Your friend, Megan
P.S. I loved Bubba's concert! Anytime you can get that guy to make an appearance (and especially sing!) be sure to tell me allll about it! =)
I didn't have high hopes for The Turning. No offense to Jennifer Armintrout intended, but there is just so much crap flooding UF/PR shelves these daysI didn't have high hopes for The Turning. No offense to Jennifer Armintrout intended, but there is just so much crap flooding UF/PR shelves these days. However, I ended up being pleasantly surprised by this book.
It starts when Dr. Carrie Ames is attacked by a master vamp and unintentionally left behind to become a vampire herself. I had to love Carrie’s initial reservation to drinking blood. As a nurse and a germophobe, I can appreciate her revulsion to the whole thing based on the extreme ickiness of blood borne pathogens. In most situations, Carrie had just enough snark and humor to make her believable and enjoyable to read about. And for you dirty readers (you know who you are!) there is no waiting around for the smut ~ plenty of naughtiness here in the first book.
But Carrie is not the perfect heroine. There are a few instances when she displays her unhappiness by stamping her foot. (Do women really do that???) And when she is in a dangerous or threatening situation, she has a tendency to become even more snarky and headstrong. I will never understand why smart, strong women also have to become extra sarcastic and know-it-all when placed in a dangerous situation. Is it really so bad to admit that you are scared, in over your head, and may not know as much as you think you do? Yes, there is something to be said for instinct. But there is also something to be said for being cautious and learning through observation. Ok… that might not make the most interesting protagonist ;) For just once though, I would love to read a about heroine who doesn’t respond to danger by getting into a pissing contest with every older, more powerful, more informed, evil beast she encounters. At least Carrie does tone down the snark when she is out of harms’ way.
Armintrout does an interesting job with her vamps. She was clearly influenced by a lot of modern books and movies on vampirism. However, she did invent some of her own vampire mythology that, frankly, didn’t make a whole lot of sense. (I know, I know… the whole vampire thing doesn’t make sense anyway!) For example, drinking a person’s blood will allow you to briefly live in select memories (think of Dumbledore’s pensieve.) This occurrence becomes incredibly helpful to the plot in that the memories witnessed are always pertinent to what is currently happening. Hmmm….. lazy writing trick? Also, vamps have two hearts ~ the regular heart, and a special seven chamber vamp heart. When the human heart is pierced, the vamp is dead. Not so odd, but the human heart can actually be removed from the body, and as long as it isn’t pierced, the vampire is ok. Huh? Sires and fledglings have a psychic type bond that is also quite handy to certain scenes. And new vamps conveniently don’t need much blood; it’s the older ones who turn into gluttons in order to maintain their undead existence. So, her vampires have some crazy rules and abilities ~ at least they don’t sparkle!
The Turning is better than a lot of what is on the market these days. I definitely recommend it to fans of UF/PR. Well… it’s not exactly PR, in that the plot isn’t driven by the romance, but there is definitely a stronger romance aspect to it than most UF novels. Anyway, I enjoyed this book, and am looking forward to the second in the series. ...more
Recently I have quit so many UF novels that I was beginning to think that perhaps I don’t really like the genre after all. Then Strange Angels came alRecently I have quit so many UF novels that I was beginning to think that perhaps I don’t really like the genre after all. Then Strange Angels came along. This book didn’t blow me away or bring anything new to the UF or YA genres. But it was an incredibly fast paced, enjoyable read. Lilith Saintcrow has obviously been influenced by many current authors, but you are able to see their effect on her without any blatant stealing on her part (I’m looking at youCassandra Clare!) And I’ve got to admit that the most refreshing thing about this book is the fact that the super old, super evil and kinda sexy vamp does not have hair down to his waist, thigh high leather boots or puffy shirts with lace cuffs. He is a normal dude with jeans, a thin black sweater and sneakers. Amazing, huh? =) Aside from his vamp abilities, his only visible status symbol is an ostentatiously large Rolex. Three cheers for Lilith Saintcrow! Finally, an author who does not feel the need to keep her old vamps outdated, silly and possibly transgendered.
Strange Angels is a great start to a series. And it’s very clear that this will be a series, although there aren’t any nasty cliffhangers at the end. I for sure recommend this book and am looking forward to getting further into the series. ...more
Last Sacrifice was a pretty solid three stars for me. Not as crappy as I feared, yet not as great as it could have been. So here it is the good, the bLast Sacrifice was a pretty solid three stars for me. Not as crappy as I feared, yet not as great as it could have been. So here it is the good, the bad and the ugly!
The Good: As usual, this is a fast paced novel with tons of action. It started slowly with the inevitable recap of the previous VA books, but soon picked up speed. And of course the supporting characters were marvelous; Lissa, Christian, and Adrian to name a few. When Rose pushes things just a little too far, these guys make up for her lack of couth.
The Bad: Someone please read this book and remind me again why it was necessary for the Queen to be murdered or Rose to be framed for it? The murder, jail time and subsequent events did nothing for the story that couldn’t have been done with a different plot line. It’s hard to bitch too much without revealing spoilers, but I felt the whole murder was a little over the top when I read it in Spirit Bound. And here, its only purpose is apparently a tool to give Rose and Dimitri some quality time together. (And before anyone yells “spoiler!” this shit is seriously implied on the back cover.)
Furthermore, we again see Rose and Lissa spending a considerable chunk of the novel apart. But as we all know, this was done already in Blood Promise. Why go there again, Mead? In BP, Lissa had a lot of growth as a result of the separation, and I suppose Rose did (or was supposed to.) But neither character gained or lost anything from the separation here. It was just a not-too-clever way to present two story lines.
While I’m on the subject of unnecessary plot twists, Last Sacrifice included a completely ridiculous foray into the vamps of Appalachia. I’m talking cave dwellin’, quilt sewin’, stompin’ feet around the communal fire, don’t-you-look-at-my-brother-or-I’ll-beat-yer-pretty-face hillbillies. Who also happen to be Moroi and dhampirs descended from Russia. Uh-huh. As a liberal, atheist, fairly well read and slightly educated woman in the heart of Ohio I am usually game to making fun of all of the rednecks around here. But I couldn’t help but feel offended by Mead’s portrayal of incredibly stereotypical mountain folk. Although this aspect of vamp culture is interesting, it served no purpose in furthering the story. It would have made a great addition to an anthology, but was 100% out of place in LS.
The Ugly: This conclusion leaves soooo many questions behind and so many characters plights unresolved. Adrian, Sydney (remember her, the Alchemist?), Eddie, Mikhail (Guardian, former lover of Sonya Karp) Jill (the young kid who Adrian affectionately refers to as Jailbait) and many others who I am certainly forgetting here. Mead brings up a shitload of issues and story lines, only to drop them in favor of (well, of course) Rose and Lissa. I like Lissa. And I do still have a soft spot in my heart for Rose. I get it that the series is about them, and of course we all wish them well and want them to have a HEA. What about the others? They were put into some pretty tricky situations and presumably left to rot. The end of a series means the end and I do expect some sort of closure. But I didn’t get it. At all.
Regarding Rose, she has had so many chances to grow and improve over the novels, but I just don’t see it. Here in LS, she is not so different from the headstrong, action oriented girl we first met in Vampire Academy. She says she has grown and changed, but has she? I don’t see it.
This series started off so strong, and cool, and different. In the beginning, I loved Rose, flaws and all. Even so, as the series progressed I expected her to face some humility and a bit of self reflection. But did she? All sorts of powerful adults bend over backwards for a very stubborn and outspoken girl who frequently acts before she thinks. Yeah, that type can be charming to some people, some of the time. But very few people called her on her bullshit, and those who did were portrayed as jerks. It’s strange to me that we see so much character development in Lissa, Christian, hell even stoic Dimitri. But Rose ~ she doesn’t change much. It’s a shame.
Fans of the Vampire Academy series will enjoy this book. But those of you who were slightly more critical of the most recent books will probably be a little disappointed in this one as well. ...more
Oh..... I just wrote an entire review and my freaking kitty jumped on the keyboard and erased it!!!! =( Dammit! Well, I'm not going back to it now, maOh..... I just wrote an entire review and my freaking kitty jumped on the keyboard and erased it!!!! =( Dammit! Well, I'm not going back to it now, maybe tomorrow.........more
As many people have said, Bite Marks is an interesting take on the vampire story. Unfortunately, it is told from so many points of view and has such sAs many people have said, Bite Marks is an interesting take on the vampire story. Unfortunately, it is told from so many points of view and has such short chapters that it simply didn't work for me. I'm not a huge fan of multiple POV stories anyway and Bite Marks doesn't even have a clear protagonist. The main story tellers seem to be: Perenelle a centuries old vampire Adam a vampire made by Perenelle Jim a boy who's entire family has been stalked & killed by Adam Baby Jim's infant nephew, turned into a vampire by Adam 'Manda a hooker who becomes Baby's surrogate mother Lori is writing a vampire book in collaboration with her ex-boyfriend Steven Lori's ex/book collaborator That's what, seven?? Whew! We don't just hear the main story from these people; we also get a lot of information about relevant events in their pasts ~ so I often felt as if I was reading a novel within a novel. Or should I say, many novels within a novel. In addition to the seven people I mentioned, this story is occasionally told from the point of view of Rahman (Perenelle's maker) Marlowe (Adam's servant) Nina (Jim's sister) Kirk ('Manda's pimp) and countless other people who I simply cannot remember here. Some of whom even die in the same chapter in which they are introduced.
As mentioned, the chapters are ridiculously short ~ rarely more than two or three pages. The total effect was not confusing... but not really conducive to getting myself lost in a story.
I think Bite Marks would make an excellent tv show. It might have even made a good series of books. But for a single novel ~ there is simply too much information from too many people. On page 130 (out of 391 pages and chapter 30 out of 104 chapters) I am done. Sorry, Mr. Taylor... ...more
What a cute book and a pleasant surprise! Paranormalcy is a refreshingly well written coming of age story about a sheltered teenage girl who just happWhat a cute book and a pleasant surprise! Paranormalcy is a refreshingly well written coming of age story about a sheltered teenage girl who just happens to live in a world filled with vamps, weres and other supernatural beasts. What’s that? You say that sounds just like every other YA book written these days? Well, yeah… but what is so different about this one is main character Evie thinks for herself, solves her own problems and develops a sweet and healthy relationship with a guy who treats her well. Uh-huh, it’s not like other YA novels after all, is it? ;)
Actually, Paranormalcy is very much like other UF/PNR novels these days. I can see a quite a bit of influence from other writers in Kiersten White’s book. Even so, I enjoyed this. A lot. It’s a fast and easy read with lots of action and interesting supernatural creatures.
The only area where the novel suffers is Evie herself. She faces a lot of life changing situations in this story and manages to come out the same optimistic and slightly over-enthusiastic and naive girl in the end that she is in the beginning. We all know that great novels include a little change and a little character growth and while we see Evie change her views of the world, we don’t see that she is much affected by it. Hopefully Evie will mature and grow a little in the books to come.
Of course Paranormalcy is part one of a series. I enjoyed this enough that I am definitely looking forward to Supernaturally (second in the series). However, I’m gonna be a stingy bey-otch with those ratings. Even though I really, really want to give this four stars, it seems only right to hold out for the second book and see where that goes. So for now, three stars it is. ...more
At first, I expected to hate this one. I am not a fan of snarky chick lit and in the beginning; Jessica is about as irreverent as they come. In additiAt first, I expected to hate this one. I am not a fan of snarky chick lit and in the beginning; Jessica is about as irreverent as they come. In addition, she is the sort of person that irritates the heck out of me both in real life and fiction: ethno-centric, vanilla, conformist and refuses to face unwelcome facts, regardless of what she is shown or told. Much to my surprise, though we do see Jessica change and become more introspective as the book continues. Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side could have easily been a series. Part of me felt the ending was rather sudden and rushed. But another part of me respects Fantaskey for going against the current trend. As much as I love to get caught up in a good series, it is nice to have a book conclude in just one take. This book isn’t great or original. But it is an incredibly fast paced, entertaining, fluffy read. As others have pointed out, it pokes fun at current vamp/teen/romance books. At least, I hope it does! Lucius is so overdramatic, that I can’t imagine an author taking his character seriously. And at the end, we see the fate of the vampire world hang on the fate of a teenage romance. Love it! Most YA books, I wish I had read as a teen ~ I feel I am missing out reading them with an adult’s perspective. But this is one I am happy to read as an adult. Remembering my own sappy teenage love life, naivety and self-centeredness just makes Jessica’s Guide… all the more hilarious =) ...more
I was recently listening to NPR and heard someone comment on what a fast society we live in and how our love for video games, big blockbuster action mI was recently listening to NPR and heard someone comment on what a fast society we live in and how our love for video games, big blockbuster action movies, etc. is also affecting the books we read. Basically, the point was that in the past a novel could be appreciated for the writing, the characters, the emotion, etc. But today, we expect a fast paced story with action and a large climax at the end. The speaker brought up the fact that famous novels from the past ~ no matter how well written they may be, would never have a chance in today's market because they simply are written in a very different style from what we have come to expect.
So... I'm no fan of video games or action movies, etc. And Charlaine Harris is certainly not a great writer. But I couldn't help thinking about the NPR segment while, and after, reading Dead in the Family. As many people have mentioned, nothing really happens that couldn't have been summed up in a short story. But I believe that Harris' writing style is such that she is able to simply tell a story ~ without advancing the plot ~ and still make it enjoyable. For whatever reason, I am content to spend a little vacation in Bon Temps with Sookie, even if nothing monumental happens. And really, Harris doesn’t appear to be writing this series with any particular direction. Perhaps I have missed something, but I just don’t see this series heading towards a specific conclusion.
As long as Harris is sure to include a little Eric lovin’ in her books, I’m a happy reader =) ...more
Uhh... can't give a decent review cause I went straight from this to Shadow Kiss ~ which I read quite quickly and can't seem to get out of my mind. SoUhh... can't give a decent review cause I went straight from this to Shadow Kiss ~ which I read quite quickly and can't seem to get out of my mind. So, perhaps a review on this one later ;)...more
Tall vampire with long black hair... black boxer shorts underneath black leather (how does that even work?!) Puh-lease! Maybe if I fell for the ultra-Tall vampire with long black hair... black boxer shorts underneath black leather (how does that even work?!) Puh-lease! Maybe if I fell for the ultra-alpha male-scary biker dude this book would have worked better for me. But as it was... just lame.
Plus, I had a hard time with the vampire myth here. According to J.R.Ward, vamps have all of the traditional super powers ~ but although they can drink human blood it will not allow them to survive. In order to survive, they need to drink each other's blood. And of course, there is a super secret society whose only purpose is to hunt down and kill the vamps. But it doesn't make sense ~ if a vamp doesn't need to drink a human's blood to survive, then where is the threat? Why should they live in secrecy? Yeah, I know... I'm overthinking the whole thing ;) I guess the bottom line is this story wasn't very gripping, the characters were flat and the sex scenes were awful. I hate not finishing a book, but a few of my reserves became available at the library, and suddenly I just wasn't motivated to finish this one. ...more