Great for a quick and easy read. Everything happens in short time, mostly because it has too, but nothing felt too rushed and the characters felt more...moreGreat for a quick and easy read. Everything happens in short time, mostly because it has too, but nothing felt too rushed and the characters felt more fleshed out than some other authors full length novels. If you like Nora Roberts, I'm sure you'll like this, classic NR with a lot of the mystical thrown in.(less)
I waiting a long time to get to Ryder and Hope - and though I loved it, it's not my favorite of the trio. That's still Owen and Avery - but this was g...moreI waiting a long time to get to Ryder and Hope - and though I loved it, it's not my favorite of the trio. That's still Owen and Avery - but this was good in typical Nora fashion.
I did think it was a tad anti-climatic, the whole build up of tension between Ryder and Hope sorta ended. Instead of snipping at each other all the time, they just sorta fall into a rhythm and the conflict was from an outside source, as usual from a Nora book. And the ending with the ghost story was a little predictable and not as exciting as it was built up to.
It's a dependable and easy read from NR for those that love her style.(less)
Wow. I don't know what else to say, except wow. I was not a fan of the first two, they were okay but not fantastic. I was beginning to wonder what eve...moreWow. I don't know what else to say, except wow. I was not a fan of the first two, they were okay but not fantastic. I was beginning to wonder what everyone else saw in this series that I didn't. Several people and dozens of reviews all told me that Z and Bella's story was the best, if I got to that, I'd know what all the hoopla was about. Sad to say, but I didn't necessarily believe them. So I put off listening to this book for several months. It's sad, I know.
OMG!!! Why didn't someone tell me it was this good? Well, Z and Bella's parts were awesome. I'd happily cut out everything that didn't involve Z & Bella. The lessers, John, all that other stuff, gone, then I'd make this a 5 star book. I love a tortured jerky hero, they are my fave! Add the tattoos, the extreme jerkiness, the fangs - sold! From the beginning of the series I really disliked that no one, not even his own brother got Z, they all thought he was an animal, just because he acted like one. I mean, if a dog that's been mistreated all it's life snarls at everyone, you can't blame the entire species. . . oh, wait, never mind. I just hated it, truth be told. And I didn't even know a quarter of the stuff he'd been through. But I guess it's true, men are clueless. It took a lovely and caring womanfemale of worth to see that Z was really just a frightened little mouse. The slightest BOO and he was ready to run, tail between legs, snarling as he goes. Bella was just what he needed, and I'm so glad he got it. I also like that Z could give her comfort in a way no one else could, being a former captive himself, he knew that dignity and gentleness were what he would have wanted. How could his brother and Wrath not see that? That upset me a lot, they couldn't see he was concerned for her. Jeez, the man loses weight, doesn't feed, doesn't sleep, tortures and kills every lesser he finds for information, hangs out at her place all the time, so much they have to ask him to stop, and is constantly looking for her for 6 weeks! Because he wanted to hurt her more? Yeah, that totally fits. He's know for torturing females of worth. I don't think so, a man who feeds on sickly and pathetic humans is not who I think is going to expend all this energy on finding a female just to torture her. Really bad on the author I think to show his brothers had such little faith in him, yet he's one of their special class.
And just in case you don't know the sarcasm, yes, the language still bothers the hell out of me. I am so very tired of it. It's too formulaic, too predictable, and too damn demeaning, in my opinion. Everyone woman is a female, it's always my brotha, never boots, never. How many times can you call them sh*t-kickers? I mean, I'm listening to this, so I might be missing something, but are they sh*t-kickers or like trademarked Sh*t-Kickers like Nike? Everyone thinks of them as sh*t-kickers. Not even Bella can think of hearing his boots clomping down the hall? And everyone only listens to rap, again. So annoying. Like Wellsie couldn't be listening to something in the kitchen while cooking, like Katy Perry or something? It's really getting old for me. And to be honest, I don't think I will enjoy the rest of the series as much, or I'll have to space them out really far apart from each other. Really, the only other Brother I'm remotely interested in is Viscous. Sorry, I know there's suppose to be a 'h' in there somewhere, but I really don't care. I find that mildly annoying too, I know I'm in the minority there, judging by all the names people choose on GR. I get that it's way of life, world building sorta thing, but it's kinda lame to me. *ducks all the stuff being thrown at her* Whatever makes you guys happy, then I'm glad you enjoy it, because I don't. This is 4 stars only because of Z and Bella.(less)
Okay, I'll admit I'm turning into a Nora Roberts junkie. I like 99% of her books, and probably am a little biased. But there's still a part of me ever...moreOkay, I'll admit I'm turning into a Nora Roberts junkie. I like 99% of her books, and probably am a little biased. But there's still a part of me every time I pick up one of her books that questions whether she'll be able to make me happy again. I mean, no one is that good, right? Wrong. At least for me. This book I was anticipating the least in the series, and so far, it's my favorite! Beckett's book was good, but I love Owen more than I thought I would.
Owen was a little bland in the first book, always the taskmaster and the over organized, happy-go-lucky, nothing seemed to phase him type. Not that this is bad, just I didn't see how he would make a good lead character, and his attraction to Avery was never really mentioned, or vice versa. Of course, in his own book he's a much more interesting character and I'm so glad I just jumped in. Admittedly, it started off a little slow for me, but I found myself falling in love with Owen's steadiness and easy going nature. It takes a lot to rattle Owen, but when he's rattled it's kinda cute, and he does have a temper, which is equally cute and fun to watch this always-in-control man lose his cool. I like that Avery is the one who unbalances him, and he balances her out. They work well together this way, and it's nice to see.
Avery was cute in the first book but in this one we get to know her a lot better and she's easy to love. Determined, scatterbrained outside of business, a romantic heart with an unromantic upbringing, she hopes for the best but expects the worst. She's always had a small thing for Owen, he was her first boyfriend, a big deal for a 5 year old. Where Owen is calm, she's wild, he's a planner and she's fly by the seat of her pants, he's organized and she's got wrapping paper all over the place. They often tease each other about their respective traits, and it works because they accept the others flaws easily. They are a pretty cute pair!
The conflict comes from an external source, but one that very much plays on Avery's mind. Her mother just up and left when Avery was 13, no explanation and never a word on where she went. Until now. When Avery's mom shows up crying, broke and homeless, it was enough for me to feel gut-wrenched for Avery's behalf. How could a woman turn her back on her child and then come and ask for money? I could see why Avery didn't want to talk about it with anyone, she has a lot of pride and didn't want any pity while secretly wondering if she was anything like her mother when it came to her love life. It's a lot to take on and the fact that Avery internalizes it, really since she was 13, makes it something pretty big to overcome. Like most of NR's characters, she works it out in her way, for Avery this means cooking up a storm, and rationalizes it out in a few days. This might be my one complaint about NR books, all her characters seem to work things out rather quickly. For me, it'd probably be a slower process to work through my feelings of my mother showing back up, but romance books can't go on forever so I guess it has to be worked out faster than normal. Either way, it still feels like a genuine conflict that needs to be dealt with, so I don't mind how quickly it's resolved.
We also get to see a preview of how things might be between Ryder and Hope when they share a New Year's Midnight kiss, and all I can say is, Please don't make me wait until November to read more! I wish it was sooner, and since NR is so prolific, I often wonder how books ahead she is, and why can't we get the trilogies much quicker?
If you've read the first of the series, I think you might be pleasantly surprised at how nice this one is. It'll definitely make you anxious over the ending of the trilogy!(less)
So, I just got the latest in the series The Last Boyfriend in the mail the other day. I was about to jump right in and thought I'd re-read my review f...moreSo, I just got the latest in the series The Last Boyfriend in the mail the other day. I was about to jump right in and thought I'd re-read my review from this book to sorta catch myself up, and saw it was a very brief and sorely lacking of detail. Of course, I had just got it on audio as well, and decided to listen to it this time and not only write a slightly better review, but also refresh myself with the characters.
I kinda wish I had just re-read the book. This audio version is not the worst I've heard, as it was okay in parts, but this narrator is terrible at women's voices and even worse at the kids. I think I could have gotten past the slightly mannish voice for all the female characters, but throw it in with the nasally and whiny kids' voices, I just wanted to cringe every time the kids talk, and they talk a lot in this book! The narrator has a decent enough voice, but it's all wrong for anything fiction. I think he did the male voices just great, but half the book is Clare, with a huge chunk of her kids, plus Avery and Hope, Clare's friends. It sorta ruined it for me the second time, but I'll not let that color my review, as reading it the first time, I loved it.
Speaking of kids, I'm not usually so crazy about kids being so prevalent in my romance books, but if the author does them well, I have no problem. This is the case here. Clare's three boys, Harry, Liam and Murphy are all boys, from the action figures, video games, wanting a dog, the arguing and stickiness, it was fun to watch Clare tame them, and keep them together somehow. It made me tired just thinking about all the stuff she did to keep day to day life going, and it made me like her a lot. She had the work/life/kids balance down, even if it was hard to struggle, she did it. Life wasn't all about work, or all about her kids, or all about herself, it was great to see that balance, something that's usually lacking in most books. Family is usually a big deal in most NR books, and I appreciate that, she doesn't kill them all off to make it convenient, and have the characters obsessed with their job, no time for a social life.
Beckett was pretty good too, and I like that Clare having three sons, and Beckett was one of three sons makes them a good fit. Most guys would probably be intimidated taking on that but since he knows all about being a boy, it was a breeze for him, and he actually liked it. Speaking of brothers, the interaction between them was great too and hilarious! Owen is so organized it makes me drool, in a good way! And of course, Ryder is the one whose book I can't wait for, him and Hope are going to have sparks flying, already do! The interaction between all characters was pretty good, and realistic.
I read in someone else's review, I think Willaful (hi Willa!) that most of the conflict in NR's later books is usually external. This is the case in this book, but it's not something I mind. I think there was a little internal conflict with Clare who at first couldn't handle Beckett wanting to help with everything when she was so use to taking care of things herself. This could have been a major conflict if she wasn't so incredibly reasonable and worked it out in a few days. I can see where's coming from, as I've been in that situation, albeit without three boys to take care of. My hubby is ex-military, and when they are gone, and you're in a foreign town, it's just you and your wits. You can cry and complain all you want, but it's still got to get done, and unless you have tons of money (which military doesn't provide) you have to do it yourself. I remember having a few such fights with my husband when he's get back from deployment, I was still doing everything and he wanted to help. It's an adjustment, one that even though he's been out for 6+ years, I still have to mentally make. I wish Clare would have struggled with this a bit more, but I don't think it would have made a very good conflict, as maybe not a lot of people get this viewpoint, or would have found it irritating and come as too independent. It's really not just independence, it's just a way of thinking you get use to if you're gonna be able to hang as a military spouse.
As I mentioned in my earlier tiny review, I do like the bit of paranormal thrown in. Not too much, not to little, but just right. You could have the story without the ghost, but it's a nice element, and I much prefer the ghost in it.
Obviously, if you've read NR before, especially the later ones, you know what you're getting. No big surprises, but it still works. It's nice to get into a NR book, if you like them. I appreciate the way she describes the setting, and I don't feel bogged down in details, but I can picture everything in my head. The pacing and style is comfortable to me, and I think it's pretty darn tight, no big gaps or info dumps, the flow is easy but the story is still good. It may be formulaic, but I still find her books incredibly entertaining, along with a few million others too!
Review from first reading of Nook version, 2/6 - 2/11/12Another new series from NR, and even though every time I pick up one of her books, I think, she can't keep this up, and yet she does. I wouldn't say it's the most fabulous, but I definitely like it, a lot. I can already see the trouble brewing between Ryder and 'the innkeeper' - and of course it'll be the last book. One of the reasons I love NR - she does romance with a little bit of the mystical thrown in, and it's just enough for me, interesting but not the whole focus of the book or the characters lives. In this one we have a resident ghost living at the inn. I can't wait for the rest of the series, I wish they'd print them sooner - we all know NR is about a dozen books ahead, lol.(less)
Aside from a little political soapboxing, this was a terrific book! It's what I love about Brockmann, and it's one of the reasons I will always want t...moreAside from a little political soapboxing, this was a terrific book! It's what I love about Brockmann, and it's one of the reasons I will always want to pick up a book by her. Aside from SEP, Brockmann is one of the first contemporary romance authors I picked up strickly by chance. This makes book #17 of hers I've read, and out of that 17, I've really enjoyed 15 of them, one was okay and Izzy's story, Breaking the Rules was dismal, but this is still pretty good odds! I think she does an excellent job of combining characters with real life issues, great storytelling, and lots of adventure/action into a pretty exciting read.
I'll admit, the whole plot to kill Allison because she might be a loose end thing was a little slim, even though she didn't actually witness a crime, but I think it worked well enough. It's one of the things I love most about Brockmann's stories, the action parts she does so well, and in my and my husband's opinion, realistically. (No, I've yet to get him to read one, but I've read scenes to him, and he's ex-military and agrees, she does a pretty good job of covering the military hero's POV - this may also be why I love her heroes so!) AJ is great, I think it's interesting and different that he's just a little older than the average romance hero, age 42, and he's a veteran from a war in which most of the world has forgotten (the first Gulf War). There are two things that come across loud and clear every time I read one of her books. First, she is definitely a defender of not just gay rights, but human rights. Sometimes I get a little tired of hearing about this through her books, but if this is her worst offense, then I'll still pick up her books as long as she continues to write them. Second, and this one is very personal to me, it's also very clear that she is staunchly proud of the men and women who serve this country, whether or not she agrees with the politics. The way she portrays her military characters, as real humans who are just everyday individuals who have chosen to defend America is so . . . so. . . . well, it's damn good! I can't come up with a word, or words. It's obvious she loves her characters, because they are among the best written in contemporary romance, in my honest opinion. No two dimensional flakes, everyone in the book seems well fleshed out, I have absolutely no complaints about her characters. In this book I especially love the ghost Jamie! How can you not love the ghost of an late 19th/early 20th century gambler who is carefree and charming in life, and fierce and honorable in do-or-die matters? Plus seeing AJ and later Allison react to him while no one else can see him is comical. I loved seeing AJ through his eyes, it gives a whole 'nother perspective of him, one that's not tragic, but real, as real as a loving father can see of his great grandson.
The premise of the story is great too. How often have you heard about fairy tales or legends and ever thought to question if it was right? Say for instance Wyatt Earp, every one reveres his memory. But how do we know for sure how things really happened? Sure, we have lots of documentation, but it's still interesting to think, what if the documentation wasn't right? What if someone, just one person got it wrong? Taking a Wyatt Earp-like story and turning it around to make the good guy into the bad is just the kind of storytelling I enjoy! This is another reason why I love Brockmann, she's not afraid to do things differently!
Really, the only thing I didn't like about this was the obvious pro-gay sentiments sprinkled too heavily into normal conversation for me. I am, without a doubt, a strong supporter of equal rights for everyone. In fact, I wish more people would get this isn't about religion or morals or anything more complex than Everyone should have the freedom to live without fear or harm. EVERYONE! However, I think the author is getting just a little clumsy in her execution. For example, when AJ calls his old military buddy, and they are talking about relationships, his buddy makes a bad joke about him being gay. Immediately he's remorseful of his joke, and goes on, and on about how it's okay to be gay, it's not a sin to him, and if AJ is gay, his friend will support him 100% and this conversation goes on for far longer than it needs to. A simple 'hey man, if you are gay, it's cool with me,' would have sufficed. Maybe one extra tiny statement. But most people don't give political rants about how it's okay to be gay in everyday conversation. Especially two military buddies who are talking for the first time in 10 years. There's another occurrence or three in the book, and again, it doesn't have to be cut out, just make it flow more with the normal conversation, that's all I'm asking. But again, if this is the worst thing that happens in her books, I'll still read them.
I highly recommend this, it's got action, great characters, a most excellent ghost story, the second love story from the past that Brockmann is famous for, it's just great! And narrated by the same people who did most of the Troubleshooters series, so I of course loved that. Definitely worth the time!(less)
Okay, so really, I'd probably give this 3.5 stars. I'm not on the bandwagon yet, but I did like this so much better than the first one. I didn't like...moreOkay, so really, I'd probably give this 3.5 stars. I'm not on the bandwagon yet, but I did like this so much better than the first one. I didn't like Wrath or Beth, so I wasn't that interested in their story, more in the Brotherhood. Here, we get the Brotherhood, but a little less info (we learned a lot in the first one - it would just be repeating), but we get Rhage. I have to say the whole dragon thing is pretty great, I love everything about it, how and why he received it from the Scribe Virgin, how it reacts, how it moves on his skin, it's all really interesting. I liked his whole story line and everything he's gone through, I felt it was the best part of the book. I honestly didn't care for Mary's constant 'I'm not pretty enough,' mumbo jumbo, it got old fast, but thankfully that ended in the second half and I didn't have to hear about it anymore. In the second part I did come to like Mary a little more, but I'm still not in love with her, or her for Rhage. The whole cancer angle was interesting and I think pretty well done, it's definitely different to have a heroine in a romance have a deadly form of cancer that we all know will probably kill her, and I'm so glad Ward took it on, this is why I am still interesting in reading the rest of the series. Ward seems inclined to touch on subjects that other writers in romance can't touch with a 10-foot pole, and she can because of the paranormal aspect, it can be explained away and be believable. I can't wait to see what she does for Z and Bella! Now I get why everyone loves Z, he is definitely an interesting character, probably the most interesting I've read in the series so far. As for Rhage and Mary, for me something felt off between them, and I didn't get their connection. I also didn't like that Rhage didn't explain a lot to her, i.e. feeding, the beast, the lore of his species, I mean she's coming in blind to all this, and he doesn't explain a lot and she doesn't ask much. I mean, she has sex with him chained up without knowing it's a dragon that could kill her??? I guess I can see her ignorance, but if Rhage wanted to protect her, shouldn't he have said 'Hey, it's a dragon, you sure you wanna tackle that shit?' Mary also seems isolated a lot, she's in the big house, but aside from the party and a few encounters with the Brotherhood, she doesn't leave Rhage's bedroom. She has no friends, besides Bella, she quits her job, is on a break from the suicide hotline (which she called, but several times in the book it mentions she fought cancer once, and will this time too. Why did she call the hotline then??), and never goes back, nor is it ever mentioned again, even though it was important to her. She was concerned with John Matthew in the beginning but as soon as Tohr took him in, that's it, she's not concerned anymore? It bothered me, the hibernation she seems to be in. Also, I get that Ward wants to establish a language/way of talking for her world, but it grows tiring. Everyone is referred to as male/female, the silly slang makes me roll my eyes every single time, and the pop culture references seem absurd, over the top and unnecessary. Also, calling boots 'shit-kickers' every single time gets old, and again, over the top. It almost feels to me that the slang, rap, overuse of silly words is directing this book towards a more juvenile mindset, and that sounds insulting, but really, it's how it feels to me. Every hear a teenager dying to fit in use all the slang and try so hard to be cool to fit in and think, 'Geez, just be yourself!' That's the feeling I get from this series so far. And that's sad to me, because at the basis of everything - this is some interesting shit!!! The story line is great, the Brotherhood, the vampire vs. lessening society, the special powers of the Brotherhood, it's so great, and if the other stuff was toned down, this would be a 5 star for me. Instead I feel like I have to put up with superfluous junk to hear a great story. I wish Ward had had enough confidence to make the story stand on it's own instead of adding so many layers that aren't needed, because I honestly feel the writing, the style (aside from the excess junk) is just dark enough to be interesting, just sexy enough, very exciting and interesting all on it's own. So, I've decided to take this series a book at a time, hoping the interest for the next will be stoked, and right now I am very interested in Z and Bella! As for the one after that, we'll have to see. (less)
**spoiler alert** So, this is what all the hype is about? I have to say, my expectations were high, really high. Unfortunately, this book does not liv...more**spoiler alert** So, this is what all the hype is about? I have to say, my expectations were high, really high. Unfortunately, this book does not live up to them, although I was warned this is not the best book in the series, so I am willing to give the next one a try, and if it's bad, I may just skip ahead to V's story, the brother who interested me the most.
All in all I thought this was pretty good. The world building was good, the whole realm of vampires fighing a war against the Society of Lessers, even the differences in what is typical of vampire lore vs. what the vampires really are like in this book/series. It's all very interesting, and in my opinion, I think very well done. Unfortunately, I don't think the main characters, Beth and Wrath live up to the rest, and they really bring it down for me. In fact, if it weren't for them, I'd probably be closer to giving this book 5 stars, but alas, they're involved. There were just too many issues with them for me to ever really like them. First, they have the most awesome sex in the world, for both of them, and she doesn't even know his name?? He goes from being intruder (and only a day after she was attacked and nearly raped) to being something she has to have right this very second! I don't think so. And Wrath isn't much better. He keeps going on and on and on and on about how he can't be with her, won't be with her. Then she helps Rhage (what's up with the H's anyway) after his dragon is released (now that I'm looking forward to hearing about) and all of a sudden, that's it, he's in love. They've known each other less than a week, and now wedding bells are going to ring? Again, I don't think so. She didn't even know he was blind for a few days!! I mean, I kinda like my characters to get to know each other and then fall in love, because let's face it, if your friend told you she was marrying a guy she knew for a week, wouldn't you just flip your lid? Add to it he's a vampire, they exchanged bodily fluids on the first night without exchanging names beforehand, oh, and she's going to change into a vampire, may not even survive that, her father she never knew about has left her a pile of money and followed her every move, and when she changes there is a whole group of beings/people wanting to kill her. Yeah, all that in a week? Give me a freakin' break!
I also have a few problems/questions about the, well for lack of a better word, mythology of this world. Explain to me if Wrath is the last pure blood vampire, how can they refer to Beth as a half breed, as though it's a dirty word? Don't they all have at least a smidgen of human blood if Wrath is the only one left with pure blood? And Marissa refers to the humans as though they are less than, again, as a dirty word, but if they are all born human and 'change' when they are 25, aren't they just pre-vampires, so what's the big deal? And if they change at 25, and live forever, does that mean you'll eventually be the same age as your parents looks wise? The whole de-materializing thing is cool, but why can't they do it through steel? And at one point Marissa does materialize into Wrath's room, so explain that to me. Also, if as vampires they can heal themselves, why can't Wrath heal his blindness? Instead it got worse from human, or pre-vampire, to vamipre, why is that when Beth's got better? Okay, and can we, or do we eventaully learn what is the 'old country,' and the 'old language,' because I want to know. All these titles and other words for things, shellon, hellron, princeps, dogen, what is the name of this other world?
A few things that bothered me - The word usage for the older vamps is annoying. For instance, Marissa says to Butch, 'I would kiss you.' Okay, I get it's because English is not her first language, but after 300+ centuries, you'd think it was better. Several times 'would' is used instead of 'am going to,' or 'want to' and it just drives me nuts. Also, the brothers frequently refer to themselves as brothers, except in the context it seems like it should read as 'bruthas.' And they listen to rap, I know this because the author mentions Tupac, Jay-Z, Biggie, and a few others. What? Gangstas gotta listen to gansta rap all the time and dress like biker dudes? Weird. The brand name dropping is a bit much too.
Fortunately for this book, it involves the brotherhood and Butch. I am way more interested in them. I can't wait to read more about Zadist, Rhage, and especially Vischious. His tattooed hand intrgiues me! Really all of them do much more than Wrath. I even like Fritz better than Wrath, he's so sweet! So for these guys, I will continue the series, hoping the author does a better job developing the relationship between the main characters better. After all, this is why I read romance, everything else is just details!(less)
**spoiler alert** I couldn't decide between giving this book 3 or 4 stars, so I chose to round up. Really there's only a few things that detract from...more**spoiler alert** I couldn't decide between giving this book 3 or 4 stars, so I chose to round up. Really there's only a few things that detract from the overall story, to some they may seem minor, but to me they are huge. I think the writing is great, well done, the world building is fun and interesting, but easy enough to follow allow. I really dislike when authors start world building and it seems like they are speaking a whole new language. This one is enjoyable, intriguing and still easy enough for simpletons like me to understand. I liked pretty much all the characters from the beginning, even the Lightwood kids, though they are a bit gruff to get used to, I completely understood them and didn't find them boring or hateful like a few other reviewers have said. Clary is sort of an annoying name, one that sounds awfully close to the author's last name, oh and BTW, the author is a redhead too, coinkydink? I think not. I have to say a big 'THANK YOU' to Lady Leah Westcliff and her short but sweet review of this book that I read beforehand - because if I had gone in blind not knowing that (view spoiler)[Jace and Clary are brother and sister and they make out, even though they didn't know it at the time, if I wanted to read about incest I'd have gone back to Flowers in the Attic, gag me with a spoon (hide spoiler)] I think it would have made me drop another star from the rating. That is something I didn't want to read about, and the whole time I had this knowledge in the back of my head, telling myself not to think about it too much, just ignore/pretend/skip over all that stuff. It helped a lot to keep me from throwing up. The other thing that bothered me a bit too much was when they were in the heat of battle they'd have whole conversations! Really? Werewolves and Forsaken are duking it out downstairs and outside, coming up to get them, Clary's mother is in some weird coma, and now is the time to have a family reunion and chat about what did and didn't happen and give each other longing looks? How about a little less chatting and a little more anger at daddy, Clary? Less with the (view spoiler)[oh no, I love Jace, but he's my brother, but Daddy Dearest is lying, isn't he, but he doesn't look anything like me, so it can't be true, and plus I love him (hide spoiler)] and more with shoot first, ask questions later please. It happens in an earlier scene as well, and all I could think was, are the demons on pause or something? Now would be the time to strike, but guess not.
If you're interested in reading this, and like me, still new to the urban fantasy, sci-fi, whatever this category is, then go in knowing the big secret - which is (view spoiler)[THEY ARE FULL BLOODED BROTHER AND SISTER!!! (hide spoiler)] and it'll help keep you from tossing your cookies. Unless you like that sort of thing. And if you do, then please don't tell me, because I may say something really rude not nice, like (view spoiler)[ I didn't know you were from West Virginia!! apology to WV(hide spoiler)].["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I mainly took a chance on this book because it was available on audio from my library and I've heard such good things about this author. I'm not reall...moreI mainly took a chance on this book because it was available on audio from my library and I've heard such good things about this author. I'm not really into the whole PNR/sci-fi romance, but if I find more books like this, I just might finally understand what all the hype is about it. I really was surprised at how well I liked it.
First, so glad I listened to it on audio, as I tend to get hung up on pronouncing things, and with completely made up words, I have no idea if I'm doing it right and that annoys me. Having the audio relieves me of that worry. The narrator did a great job, and the world building was not too overwhelming. I didn't feel like everything was being explained to me, but at the same time I didn't feel lost either. Usually I have a hard time with this part of PNR/sci-fi books, but this is not difficult to dive right into, something I really appreciate!
The overall story was okay, I wasn't too fond of the heroine, for most of the book I thought she was TSTL, and really kind of annoyed me, but it was bearable for the most part. The hero was someone I liked from the beginning, but as the story went on I wasn't so impressed with him anymore. I think the fact that he could fall so easily in love with the heroine after his extremely difficult life made it a little too unrealistic for me. She wasn't a bad person, but I didn't see why he so easily fell in love, and rather quickly. Same goes for her too. I really enjoyed the secondary characters much more, especially Syn and Darling. I can't wait to read the next book, which I think is Syn's.
If you're into the sci-fi theme, this really is a good book to read. If you're not into it, but want a great starter or intro, I think listening to this on audio will do the trick. Between the narration and the author's excellent job of blending a romance with sci-fi, you'll not be disappointed. Even if you don't love the main characters, the book as a whole is pretty good!(less)
**spoiler alert** Okay boys and mostly girls - let's play a new drinking game, shall we? Every time Roman, the hero of the story says, 'God's blood,'...more**spoiler alert** Okay boys and mostly girls - let's play a new drinking game, shall we? Every time Roman, the hero of the story says, 'God's blood,' take a shot! Note to self: Make out last will and testament before I die of alcohol poisoning!
Really, how can this be so popular? I listened to this on audio, big mistake I think, because it just draws attention to the dialog so much more. Usually, that's a good thing, but in this case, not so much! At one time near the beginning, I counted 6-7 times Roman says God's blood in like a 5 minute period. Simply ridiculous! This book had me rolling my eyes so much, I just kept thinking, 'it can't get any worse.' Wrong!
First off, Roman is a 500+ year old vampire, (and a physical virgin, if not a mental virgin - please don't ask, it's too weird for words) who is a former monk, and feels he's a 'demon from hell.' (Note, this phrase can be substituted for the drinking game, however I would not add it, otherwise, you might as well drink the Mississippi!) He's created artificial blood so vamps can stop killing the mortals and save their lives. But he's the worst person/vampire in the world because he has done bad things. After 500 years, you'd figure this guy would have let it go, just a little. But not Roman. Multi-billionaire, creator of thousands of jobs, saver of lives, he's not worthy. Whatever!! It got real old, real fast, and he was not enjoyable to read about. It was a chore, in fact.
Then we have the dentist (really sexy there, lol) Shanna, who is afraid of blood because she saw her best friend get murdered, and is currently in the witness protection program and the Russians who have been wanting to kill her have found her, conviently on the same night (in an all night dental clinic - do those even exist?) that Roman has had a fang pop out after biting a blow-up sex doll. No freakin' joke folks! I am not making this up. Of course Roman saves her, and even though she's supposively wary of strangers, she goes with him willingly. People are out to kill her and she jumps in a car with two men she's never seen, one who wants her to put a 'wolf's tooth,' (another acceptable subsitution for the drinking game) in his mouth. Riiiigghhhtt. Makes perfect sense. Obviously she doesn't realize right away he's some sort of freak, and instantly starts to fall in love with him and cry over all the injustices the world has brought against him. Cue the violins. Then she finds out what he is, and still, she's drawn to him. Woe is her because nothing in her life can be normal, she can't have the normal husband, with the normal career, with the normal 2.4 kids, with the normal house, with the normal white picket fence, with the normal big dog because Russians are out to kill her and she's in love with a vampire who wants to drink her blood, but he's such a good man. Or demon from hell. She can't decide which. I really can't believe this is so popular!
Don't forget her father, who shipped her off to boarding school because she has a pyschic gift to block vampire thoughts like daddy, and is also CIA, in a group designed to kill all vampires (a group of 5 to kill thousands, maybe millions - totally possible) called, get this - Stake Out. Could this get any cornier? Daddy doesn't want her to be with vampires obviously, don't know why he hates them so, other than that they are, say it all with me, 'demons from hell.' But Shanna is convinced Daddy Dearest will come around soon. And she loves him, but doesn't want to become a vampire. Since this is where it stops and it's a series, it will be interesting to see where this will go. Yes, I will probably read the next one, whenever I need something utterly ridiculous to make me question my sanity, so probably in a few weeks.
So why 2 stars and not 1? Well, the premise of the book is really quite funny, and it did make me laugh. In fact, this whole book made me laugh! And groan, and smack my forehead, and question my sanity. But whatever, it was so corny, I couldn't not read, like a bad train wreck, you just can't look away. The dialogue is silly, and often repeats what the character has just thought, so the repitition gets old. After 3 days, they decide to get married. I hate this when the hero/heroine have no prior connections. I did like the highlanders, and I'm hoping one of them gets the next book, because who doesn't love a sexy authentic highlander in a kilt, who's also a vampire! I also like Gregorio, Lazlo and their mother, Redinko. Hopefully they will be featured more in the next one. If you want to drive yourself nuts, go for it!! This will be lots of fun!(less)
**spoiler alert** I finally decided to see what all the excitement was about over Sookie Stackhouse. Unfortunately, I was not really impressed. Maybe...more**spoiler alert** I finally decided to see what all the excitement was about over Sookie Stackhouse. Unfortunately, I was not really impressed. Maybe because I was looking for something a little darker, a little grittier, or my expectations were high, but I thought it was just okay.
Even if I didn't know anything about the author, I could tell this book was written by an extremely southern older woman who is probably a habitual church goer. Not that there's anything wrong with that, quite the contrary, some of these women are the funniest and most delightful to spend an afternoon with. However, they do have certain tendencies to the way they talk, not just diction and accent, but the words and phrases they use. Sookie sort of makes me think if Dr. Phil and Paula Deen had babies, she'd be one of them. She's not dumb, (I know because she keeps telling me) but she sure is a smart alec, and not a funny one in my opinion. She says some of the silliest things at the most inopportune times. Like when Eric staked a fellow vampire and he turned to goo and dust, leaving a weird stain on the carpet, I know she was shaken by what had just happened to her and what she had just seen, but really, 'You're gonna have to get an area rug for that spot?' Instead of being charming I found it annoying and ridiculous. She makes the worst decisions, and I think the silliest logic that does her no good. For instance, when Rene is after her in the end, and she's rationalizing her choices of staying in the house or running to Bill's to use his phone, I think any sane person would choose to stay in the house, the house you know all the nooks and crannies, where the kitchen knives are, the trick step that creaks, the chunky wooden candlestick that will cause serious damage is, I think would be safer. Besides all that, she rations if she stays in the house she'll be trapped. What, does the house not have but one door? No windows? I know Sookie needed to go outside to move the story along, so she could have the big fight scene with Rene and make it to Bill's to use the phone, but I think this was a lame way to go about out. She couldn't have something draw her out, or hey, she knew Rene, he could have walked right up to her door and knocked, she would have let him in. I just found too many of these type of decisions explained poorly or they were just too different from reality.
I also don't like first person, and it's rare that it's really called for, especially in romance novels. You can't really get to know the other character, and that's annoying to me. Bill is such a big part of this book, as he's a big part of Sookie's life, but I feel I got to know Sam better than Bill. Bill seems very reserved, and sort of distant, which is fine, but when I can't see or know what's going on in his mind, and our mind reader Sookie doesn't either, it makes for a frustrating romance to me, almost angsty. All this love and feeling and wanting, and it's all one sided, simply because I have no idea how Bill really feels. People are notorious, especially in romance books for saying one thing and meaning another. Is that going on? We don't know. As a result, the relationship reads much like a high school drama, does he like me, I don't know, well I'm mad at him for not wanting me, even though he's turning down all the groupies at this bar, so I'm gonna pout and push him away, but I really want him, but I won't tell him because I don't want him to feel obligated to me. WTF? This was super annoying to me, and I can't begin to tell you how much it made me like Sookie even less. And Bill is no better - she might want Eric so I won't tell her I like her (if he really does). There's no sexual tension that I can see, just pure chemistry, with without the tension, and having all the teenage-like angst, it just annoying. Even Twilight could show the other characters emotions, and it gets mixed reviews all the time, how can this be better? When Edward looked at Bella, you could see the tension, hear it in his voice. But when Bill talks to Sookie, it feels all formal, one-sided and boring. And the fact that they profess their love to each other, and I haven't even felt a blip of emotion for either one of them (save when Sookie's grandmother died - but that's the wrong type of emotion I'm referring to), it definitely rang out as a teenage love drama.
There is the murders, and I have to confess, I couldn't tell who the killer was, so the mystery part was very well done. Just enough info in the book that the seed should have been planted as who the possible killer was, but I still never caught it. Maybe I was distracted by all the angst. I think if the author went more for mystery than paranormal romance type, she would be excellent. Maybe that's the intention, but it didn't come across that way to me. Sam was a great character, and I liked that he threw Sookie off balance a little. I figured werewolve, but shapeshifter is close enough. If I read the rest of the series, I hope he's in more of it.
I don't know if I'll read any more of the series, but probably will in time. I hate leaving a series unfinished, and this one did leave a little hook at the end, albeit, a small one that I could choose to ignore. I still feel guilty I haven't finished the Anita Blake series, even though I can't get through book 12 without wanting to throw up. I have a feeling I will come back and finish this series, at least it was enjoyable in parts, and they are short enough to digest quickly. I can't wait to watch True Blood and see how different they are!(less)