I actually give this book 4.5 stars, for just one reason. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this fast paced book.
Princess Nalia's whole life changes i...moreI actually give this book 4.5 stars, for just one reason. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this fast paced book.
Princess Nalia's whole life changes in an instant when she learns she isn't really the princess, but a stand in. Her life quickly - sometimes very abrumptly (hence the 4.5 stars, as the abrumpt changes drove me nuts) kept changing, and she always adapted well to her new circumstances (which also drove me nuts - as she was a little *too* perfect, if you know what I mean. Especially a perfect 16 year old). She starts life living in the palace, then with her aunt, then tries to go to magic school, and ends up an apprentice to a crazy witch, all in a very short time without each location really coming to life in my mind.
The book however, settles in nicely about halfway through. I admit, I wasn't sure who the bad guy was until the end, though I had my guesses.
There's a smidge of romance, but nothing inappropriate for a tween or teen to read. I'm not a fan of straight romance books, but I enjoyed reading how the false princess eventually realized her best friend was the man of her dreams.
All in all, I greatly enjoyed the book & read it in just one afternoon, and I would be interested in reading what else O'Neal may write.
I received this book to review as part of a book tour. My opinions are entirely my own.(less)
I was asked to read & review this book quite some time ago & sadly, it took me quite some time to actually do so, I really fell off the review...moreI was asked to read & review this book quite some time ago & sadly, it took me quite some time to actually do so, I really fell off the review bandwagon with this one. I say this very, very often on my blog, but I really don't like jumping into the middle of shows, books, series, etc., and I won't review a book) or read on my own a book that's in the middle of a series if I haven't read ALL the previous ones (I'm like that with everything: books, movies, miniseries, tv shows, and chocolate chip cookies!). I didn't realize this book was part of a series until I had read the first few chapters & knew I had gaps in the storyline, went online, & sure enough, this is book three.
Trish Milburn, the author, does a great job in trying to give the backstory of what happened in the previous books, without boring the audience who had read the first two, but I did find myself lost more than once in the story, or wishing I knew more & wondering if I had read the others, I would know the whole story - or perhaps "get" more out of a particular scene if I had.
All of these things being said, I did enjoy the book. I enjoyed reading about the relationships between all of the main characters, and I also enjoyed the fact that the two main teenagers, Jax and Keller, have a very age appropriate relationship - they kiss, but no hanky panky. I give the book 4 stars because though I didn't really love the book, I did enjoy reading it & I know I would have loved this title & series fifteen years ago.(less)
I very kindly received a review copy of this book, & unfortunately it sat until I had a chance to read it. Once I did, I quickly read & finish...moreI very kindly received a review copy of this book, & unfortunately it sat until I had a chance to read it. Once I did, I quickly read & finished it. The book starts you off immediately into the main character's life, and as you can tell from summaries of the book, she quickly turns into a vampire. It's tough for her to adjust to her new reality, but she starts learning & training about how to become a vampire.
All in all, I enjoyed the book & will probably read the next book in the series.
I give the book 4 stars instead of 5 for two reasons: 1) I did not fall in love with any of the characters - I did enjoy reading about them, but I did not fall in love with them & I only give 5 star reviews to books when I both love the book & love the characters
2) Without spoiling you, I felt that the final climax of the story was too much of a stretch. If throughout the book, the main character doesn't like another character, doesn't trust her, feels something is "off" about her, then why would you put yourself into a situation when you are alone with her? And then wonder why you got yourself into this mess? (less)
I received this book for Christmas last year, and started it right away. And struggled to get into it. Piers Anthony was my favorite author as a kid/t...moreI received this book for Christmas last year, and started it right away. And struggled to get into it. Piers Anthony was my favorite author as a kid/teen/young adult, and the Incarnations series has been a favorite of mine for years. I was thrilled when this book came out, and was even happier when I finally got my hands on a copy.
That being said... the book was just disappointing. In my mind, there are a lot of reasons for that. A lot of it was just rehashed from earlier Incarnation books, a lot of it was just weird things that really didn't make much sense, a lot of it was sex every 4 pages (not always terribly graphic sex, and Anthony always did have a lot of sex in his books, but this book was to the extreme). A lot of it was the overly complicated time lines, that seemed to exist just to stretch out the book & make it longer.
All in all... I have to say, I had to force myself to finish reading the book, and I did so only my skimming most of the second half. Normally I keep any Anthony books on my shelves as a permanent fixture, but this one I'll list on my paperbackbookswap.com account.(less)
I actually have read this book a couple of times, and most recently last year. I'm trying to post reviews for books I've read & enjoyed in the pas...moreI actually have read this book a couple of times, and most recently last year. I'm trying to post reviews for books I've read & enjoyed in the past.
Because of the tv shows, I decided I wanted to reread the series & catch up on the books I hadn't read yet. The first book in this series is still one of my all-time favorite books, ever. Fantasy & a big, fat, long book starting a series? This makes my heart beat a little faster :).
Anyways, this is one of those books that start slow. There's a lot of character development in the first half. I enjoy the whole history aspect of the book & how it ties together at the end. I love the Sisters. I'm sick of Kahlan whining uncharacteristically, and after rereading this book, I remembered that that was why I gave up on the series the first time.(less)
I saw a review of this book on another blog - sorry, original blogger, I didn't save the post - and since I'm an obsessive knitter & obsessed with...moreI saw a review of this book on another blog - sorry, original blogger, I didn't save the post - and since I'm an obsessive knitter & obsessed with vampires, witches, fairies, and the like, I immediately requested the book from interlibrary loan.
You'll saw my huge library pile I got last week, this book was in it. Well, it was the first one to be picked up from the stack (even though I was reading 3 other books at one time), and I absolutely laughed out loud - literally made my cat cross eyed with me - from the very first page. Obviously Bretton was sincere in her desire to make a GOOD knitting fiction book; it's been done before, but usually the knitting references are done in passing, and it's obvious the writer has no real connection to knitting (an exception is The Shop on Blossom Street, by Debbie Macomber). The addition of paranormal elements made me just giddy. There's a bit of romance, which I'm not a huge fan of, but the book is so well written, I felt myself rooting for the relationship between Chloe & Luke all the same.(less)
I've been attached to Sookie for a long, long time now - Anita Blake was the first paranormal series I fell in love wi...moreThe last Sookie Stackhouse book.
I've been attached to Sookie for a long, long time now - Anita Blake was the first paranormal series I fell in love with, the series that got me hooked on vampires, werewolves, and witches OH MY! And Sookie was the second.
Kudos to Harris for choosing to end this series before it got stale and tired (unlike the Anita Blake series, which I keep on reading and complaining about).
I finished this book a couple of weeks ago, but had to sit on the review because I honestly didn't know how I felt about the book. It was a quick read, like all the Sookie books, but I didn't want a quick read - I wanted to savor the last book. You knew the last book was going to be all about resolving Sookie's love life, which pretty much was exactly the point of the last book. Yup, there's other stuff going on, but those other story lines didn't really seem to be terribly well developed/thought out/well written, and just seemed like an afterthought - something to help keep the book going, something to help keep the book from being only 50 pages long.
So what DID I think? Well... I was disappointed. The last Sookie book, ever? Well, you just expected a lot... you expected great things, amazing things... and, well, the series concluded exactly like you knew it would, with exactly no surprises. And that just seemed like Harris cheated us a little bit. It just seemed like Harris wanted to make the long time readers happy, let's finish up the series, and be done with it.
So... that's the bad stuff. What was good about it? * you find out who Sookie ends up with. * it's the last book of the series * Umm.
And there you have it. I think the fact that I can only come up with one good thing about the book, helps me to realize I rate this 3 stars. Why 3 stars? Because honestly, I knew all along she was going to end up with who she ended up with, and Charlaine Harris delivered that, as horribly badly as she did so.
There are a LOT of other reviews on this book, though annoyingly, most of the reviews start with "I didn't read this book, but I read other reviews, and I think" blah, blah. How do you review a book without actually reading the book? (less)
I'm not sure exactly how to review this book, except to spell out the good and the bad like I usually do.
I want to say I'm biased; I love Piers Anthon...moreI'm not sure exactly how to review this book, except to spell out the good and the bad like I usually do.
I want to say I'm biased; I love Piers Anthony & I love the Xanth books, but unfortunately, that's not really true, either. I USED to love Anthony & I LOVED the books as a kid; still love the earlier ones - I even reread them ever so often.
But seriously - Anthony's a dirty old man - 78.
In one way, the books are clean, though they aren't as clean as his earlier books. He doesn't spell out adult scenes or use adult language, instead writing "bleep" or "bleeping". It's amazing, however, how often his characters lose their clothing, show their underclothes, refer to sex, or othewise get involved in adult situations. Perhaps it's just me, but I don't remember his characters in Xanth novels actually engaging in adult behavior, just casual mentions of "summoning the stork". Board Stiff is very different.
Regular Xanth readers will want to know about the puns. Once again, I have to say, I enjoy how he uses puns in his earlier books, but after the first dozen or so, he seems to just try to cram as many puns as possible into a given book, without trying to have them actually make sense. Most of them aren't that bad, and I don't think there's as many puns as some books, but a lot of them just don't really fit into the story. There's a particularly bad one involving women who miscarry that's just horrifying - to me, there's just certain things you don't make fun of, and certain miscarriages is oen of those topics. It's just crass, especially when it was just so random.
But what about the storyline and the plot? In a way, this book has a better plot than some of the otehr books, but most of the adventures are triggered by a sequin falling off of a dress - as in, a sequence of events (I hear a groan). It was funny the first few times, but Anthony repeatedly uses this plot device in every chapter, to get the characters to the next part of the story.
My other big pet peeve was EVERY new character the "quest" group met up with, had to be reintroduced to the group and to their mission. I'm not a writer & don't pretend to be, but you're telling me Anthony couldn't figure out another way? He couldn't have just written, just once, "And Ease caught so and so up on their adventures so far"?
My last complaint is typical - you know how the book is going to end, and it ends exactly that way, and al lin 2 pages.
So what's my rating? Well... after all of my complaint, I still enjoyed reading Board Stiff. It's a fun, Xanth romp after all, and that's what it's meant to be, a fun, fast, don't take things too seriously and just enjoy it kind of book. You are supposed to read a Xanth book & groan throughout it, but if it makes you forget about life for a little while, then the book is doing its job. I'll continue to read Xanth books, maybe not every one, but every one I happen to come across by random chance, and I'll continue to appreciate the books for what they are.
I received a review copy of this book from Edelweiss/the publisher.(less)