I try to read this every year as it never fails to return me to my 5-year-old self, filled with excitement over the great and powerful Santa's impendi...moreI try to read this every year as it never fails to return me to my 5-year-old self, filled with excitement over the great and powerful Santa's impending visit. The catchy rhythm and rhyme of this delightful poem is contagious. I used to repeat it often as a child until the first lines were branded into my brain:
''Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.'
It always leaves me with a warm and satisfied glow as I read the last words:
"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"
My first taste of Koontz and I can't say I liked it. The excerpt from the killer's journal at the beginning and the closing paragraph were the best th...moreMy first taste of Koontz and I can't say I liked it. The excerpt from the killer's journal at the beginning and the closing paragraph were the best things about this story. It was slow and it wasn't nearly as horrific or as creepy as I thought it would be. The ending sucked and it just dragged...on...and on...and...on...(less)
I actually read most of this fable whilst simultaneously watching the 1999 film adaptation with Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: Next Generation, X-Men).
I...moreI actually read most of this fable whilst simultaneously watching the 1999 film adaptation with Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: Next Generation, X-Men).
I didn't realise until I read this that some of the humorous bits had passed me by in the adaptations and found myself laughing at Scrooge's very uncharitable and gloomy nature, and later the reactions to his death.
My absolute favourite character was Scrooge's nephew and his persistent attempts to befriend his uncle, always offering an invitation to Christmas dinner every year. I loved his perceptiveness in observing and understanding Scrooge's behaviour (and taking it without offence). It was spot on.
Scrooge: "What right have you to be merry? What reason have you to merry? You're poor enough." Nephew: "What right have you to be dismal? What reason have you to be morose? You're rich enough." Scrooge: "Bah! Humbug!"
However, the narrative was very wordy so I did resort to skimming quite a bit of the descriptions to get to the good stuff i.e. the dialogue.
It was a good seasonal read to get me in to the spirit of Christmas. 'And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God bless Us, Every One!'(less)
Perhaps it doesn't deserve 1 star but I really didn't enjoy this. Admittedly I like my romance with paranormal elements and this was me dipping my toe...morePerhaps it doesn't deserve 1 star but I really didn't enjoy this. Admittedly I like my romance with paranormal elements and this was me dipping my toes in contemporary but the pace was slow to the point where it felt like it was never-ending but mostly I felt this was forgettable because it wasn't original. There were some funny moments like the man-thong incident but it's also quite sad and depressing which I wasn't expecting and probably wasn't in the mood for.(less)
For being a modern 20th century girl from 1997, Ari adjusted too well to 16th century Scotland for my liking. I thought she would've missed modern tec...moreFor being a modern 20th century girl from 1997, Ari adjusted too well to 16th century Scotland for my liking. I thought she would've missed modern technology more than she did. She only mentioned missing hot water. Only hot water?! And she didn't even seem bored when her days were mostly empty. No TV, no internet, no job and only a limited number of books -I'd die of boredom! Even with a hot husband and his loving mother for a companion.
Overall, it was quite slow but the characters were more likeable than those from Fever series and this was a much better first book than Darkfever. I will definitely be continuing with this series.(less)
I still had a hard time connecting with the characters but at least they were tolerable this time. There was no urge to kill Mac which surprised me. I...moreI still had a hard time connecting with the characters but at least they were tolerable this time. There was no urge to kill Mac which surprised me. I felt relief that she's learning and growing as a person because she couldn't get more shallow and TSTL.
The writing has improved though some things were glossed over and wish that the story was kept in the present instead of Mac commenting on events in past tense, it doesn't add anything to the story. I'm also a little annoyed that not much is wrapped up and that the next two have awful cliffhanger endings, or so I've heard. I won't be reading them yet, I'll wait until the last book comes out next year. I feel like these books string you along and I really dislike that feeling. I still don't understand what all the fuss is about this series but I will at least read the next book.(less)
I don't usually read paranormal romance series books back-to-back, they really have to have that extra something to make me want more and although I e...moreI don't usually read paranormal romance series books back-to-back, they really have to have that extra something to make me want more and although I enjoyed the first book immensely, I didn't like this one quite as much.
I'm not a big fan of the reunited lovers storyline, it always makes me sad that they lost so much time together, in this case because of misunderstandings. I also didn't love Savannah as much as her twin sister Neva, in the first book. She was hard and tough and difficult to relate to though I liked her more when we find out about her past with Cade and when she comes alive with him in the present.
I loved Ronan. I felt sorry for him but he really cared for Savannah and knew what she needed and gave it to her even when it meant losing her. So sweet.
The plot was good, the mystery kept you guessing as to who was behind the murders and why they were being committed in order to bring Vannah and Cade back together.
One thing that did get a little on my nerves was the editing. Mostly it was just Savannah's name. I don't know how it was supposed be spelt because it was always spelt differently. With the "h" and without. On a couple of occasions the entire name was wrong, it was someone else's.
Anyway, I still enjoyed this book. It appears there are only two in this series making it a duology -a rare thing these days but it was well-worth reading.(less)
I couldn't get past book 2 of Arthur's Riley Jenson series but this was oh so much better. I was pleasantly surprised. It's set in the same world with...moreI couldn't get past book 2 of Arthur's Riley Jenson series but this was oh so much better. I was pleasantly surprised. It's set in the same world with the same "rules" and although I believe the story to be forgettable but it was an incredibly satisfying read.
The characters were well rounded and mostly likeable. When I say mostly, I mean Duncan when he turned into a bastard and started pushing Neva too far, hurting her and damaging her relationship with her parents even if she did need to stand up to them he didn't have to force her to do it in such a horrible way.
The story was interesting and engrossing. I'm not usually a fan of so much sex in my books because the plot suffers more often than not. In this case it didn't. Yay!(less)
Beautiful. Evil, but beautiful. Evil because I now have Stockholm Syndrome. Beautiful because I didn't realise it was happening, the writing was so su...moreBeautiful. Evil, but beautiful. Evil because I now have Stockholm Syndrome. Beautiful because I didn't realise it was happening, the writing was so subtle yet engrossing and real. Gritty.
I fell in love with Ty, the kidnapper. He was so kind, considerate and almost harmless really (Hello, Stockholm!). He'd saved Gemma's life so many times and eventually sacrificed his freedom for her. How can anyone not love him a little for that?
I understood his motivations. He was lonely and had been badly treated all his life. At first I had all kinds of ideas of what he was: paedophile, rapist, killer etc. He was none of those things. He just wanted to escape civilisation and when he spotted Gemma, who he believed was being neglected by her parents just as he was, he wanted to rescue her.
I can't understand why people compare this to Living Dead Girl. Ray, the kidnapper is all of the things I mentioned above. He was not kind, he raped, he's a paedophile and he murdered. I did not fall in love with him. It's not a fair comparison. They're completely different.
Although at times Ty seemed scary, he was vulnerable and fragile too. He cried. He suffered from nightmares. In some ways he's like a child himself, with his love of the land, his painting and his folk stories. His sense of fun can be a little strange but there are some funny moments. It's not all fear and confusion. Catching the camel was hilarious. She (the camel) had my heart from then on.
As you can tell I loved Ty but I also cared about Gemma. At first I just wanted her to accept her situation, to stop looking for trouble. The number of times she said "You're lying!" or "I don't believe you!" got on my nerves because she said it in relation to the simplest of plausible statements but when she calmed down she was so starkly honest with herself even when she wanted to go into denial. She was strong. Both characters were to have survived their traumas.
You may think I'm as loopy as Ty but I wished for a happy ending. Gemma and Ty together. Maybe not out in the desert forever but living on the edge of a small town. Happily ever after. I can dream, right?
Stolen. Everything in this book is stolen, including Ty. Nothing belongs to anyone. Not even themselves. There's only the land and the sky. And survival. Beautiful.(less)
The short length of The Panther's Lair impeded my enjoyment of this story. There wasn't enough time for the characters to properly fall for one anothe...moreThe short length of The Panther's Lair impeded my enjoyment of this story. There wasn't enough time for the characters to properly fall for one another and read as "love at first sight" which I'm not a real fan of. Also the plot involving the ex would have gone a lot smoother if the book had been longer. Other than that the writing was good and humorous in places. If you're a fan of Moira Rogers or Shelly Laurenston then you might enjoy this.(less)
The Lesson: Never put on any ancient necklaces when you don't know its history.
Ignoring this rule could change your life forever. Luckily for Toni al...moreThe Lesson: Never put on any ancient necklaces when you don't know its history.
Ignoring this rule could change your life forever. Luckily for Toni although her old life as a self-reliant thief is over she gains a family in Amethyst, the dragon she's now been merged with and a sexy geek who in helping her has become her "minion" much to his chagrin.
This was an easy read, the writing flowed and the three main characters were likeable in their odd but endearing relationship as a threesome.(less)
Severed hands, legs, feet, fingers. Good grief, I know these guys are immortal warriors but could we keep the severed limbs to a minimum please. It ma...moreSevered hands, legs, feet, fingers. Good grief, I know these guys are immortal warriors but could we keep the severed limbs to a minimum please. It makes me queasy. It's the only kind of gore that I could go without, everything else including severed heads (I don't know why) is just dandy.
Anyway, it's poor Bowen's turn to find his mate. Oh wait, he all ready found his mate and ran her into an early death. And they only get one. Oh dear. So how can he possibly have a book in a series where mates must be found and claimed? Well, it isn't quite that simple. No, he doesn't get two, that would be too easy.
After losing the Hie, he's devastated he can't go back in time to re-claim his mate before her death and is confused as to why Nucking Futs Nix (hehe) told him he would find his mate by entering this competition.
And it seems he's been ignoring his urges and instincts, which in this instance, goes completely against standard male behaviour. If you find a pretty girl who's the first to drive you absolutely crazy after a couple of hundred years, why hold back? All this talk of loyalty for a dead mate means nothing when you haven't had sex in so long. Men. I will never understand them.
Could she be a reincarnation of his mate? Is he lucky enough to get two? Or is this a trick?
Enjoyable but predictable in places plus the nausea -3.5 stars.(less)
Ever felt so rage-filled with the lust for violent vengeance that you've envisioned slaughtering someone? I've done this, we've probably all done this...moreEver felt so rage-filled with the lust for violent vengeance that you've envisioned slaughtering someone? I've done this, we've probably all done this at one time. However, we don't always act on it and instead find an outlet to work through it but Missy allows herself only one outlet, a painfully unhealthy one -cutting herself.
You could see some of her need to 'let out the badness' as she feels like she has no one to talk to when her parents are mostly too busy with work to spend time with their children and Missy has been at war (pun intended) with her younger sister since she started high school and turned into Missy's opposite, the barbie-doll cheerleader. What Missy didn't realise until later was that she always had someone on her side -Erica, the childhood friend she had pushed away but came to her aid at a crucial moment, saving her life:
"I want to die," Missy said, her soul naked and raw. "I'll be there in two minutes," Erica said.
I loved Erica in that moment.
I didn't enjoy Rage as much as I did Hunger, maybe because cutting is not something the author has personally experienced (see Author's Note) though it's evident that it's been extremely well-researched but I did feel Missy's pain and embarrassment regarding a mother of all acts of bullying and the cyber-bullying afterwards.
I was unhappy that my thirst for righteous karmic justice for Missy wasn't quenched. People deserved to pay and although I commend Missy's strength in turning the other cheek, I wanted them to feel her pain. To suffer as she had at their hands. Perhaps that's me being bloody-minded but I secretly hoped something nasty befalls those that hurt her and wished her dead.
Missy's blinding rage, the urge to hunt and kill her enemies, her blood lust, I could fully understand and couldn't fault her for it. I could even forgive her if she'd acted on it. Her bullies as well as the bystanders should understand this isn't acceptable because you can never predict what someone is capable of in retaliation, why we should always strive to treat others as we want to be treated. Just in case.
I was glad to see that her being recruited for the position of War (and Death's handmaiden) helped her accept herself as she is with Death's help. Which reminds me there are some funny pokes at Death: i.e. Missy slamming the door in his face, lusting after and kissing him, etc.
Despite my disappointment in my unfulfilled need for vengeance this is still a great book with amazing insights into the world today and would definitely recommend it to others. I'm looking forward to Loss on Pestilence, who intrigued me with his mental as well as physical illness in this instalment.(less)
The Sevenfold Spell is an original but very adult take on the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale. It may seem a bit confusing at first but everything is expla...moreThe Sevenfold Spell is an original but very adult take on the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale. It may seem a bit confusing at first but everything is explained and revealed as you go. Although this is a "re-telling" it still fits within the constraints of what makes a "fairy tale". This is not a novel or a full length story so please don't judge it as one.
I will warn that this book contains a lot of sex but it doesn't diminish the story. It's part of the tragedy that is Talia's life. I couldn't help but think of her as the Ugly Duckling even though this wasn't based on that story. I constantly felt sympathy for her situation and her loneliness. I'm pleased to say that this book was as good as it's beautiful cover. I loved the twists on the original story and the way the tale ends with the usual but much deserved happily ever after.(less)
I was strongly reminded of the Psy/Changeling series, one of my favourites, by Nalini Singh especially the first book Slave to Sensation, when reading...moreI was strongly reminded of the Psy/Changeling series, one of my favourites, by Nalini Singh especially the first book Slave to Sensation, when reading Tempting the Enemy. The Sibile are comparable to the Psy, they believe themselves to be the superior race with incredible psychic abilities and look down on humans and shifters who in this have been hunted by humans almost to extinction.
At the beginning I was worried this was going to be love at first sight, or in this case scent but I was wrong. It's lust at first sight mostly due to Jade going into heat in Pale's presence but luckily for her he was a gentlemen and could control his urges around her unlike others who wouldn't hesitate to rape her, but it turns into a slow seduction instead as Pale and Jade work together to catch a savage and elusive serial killer.
I really enjoyed this and I'm hungry for more. I want to follow the new pack's progress and watch the forthcoming attack and subsequent human war on the Sebile, I only hope Jalla and Sage survive that conflict. Sequel please? Pretty please?(less)
This book, with an eye-catching cover, got off to a bumpy start but about halfway through it picked up.
Allegra travels to Scotland when a Deddflower...moreThis book, with an eye-catching cover, got off to a bumpy start but about halfway through it picked up.
Allegra travels to Scotland when a Deddflower or Bleeding Rose, a harbinger of tragedy is found to be growing on the shore of a loch. She's called in to investigate in order to prevent whatever disaster is about to befall the small village.
Allegra was likeable but Casper the guardian angel stole the show. He's tortured soul and mystery man all rolled into one plus he's a golden hunk of a warrior trying to atone for his wicked past so he can get into heaven. What's not to love? Which is exactly Allegra's problem. Casper isn't allowed to fornicate. It's forbidden, part of his punishment for his sins against women in life. She has a hard time with this and even tries to spend time with an interested handsome man who also happens to be her employer on this case. The romantic element isn't resolved so perhaps there will be a sequel.
The plot wasn't as tight as I would've liked and as a result I lost interest a few times and put the book down a lot to begin with. There was also very little background on Allegra's life both personally and professionally. Casper was actually the most well-rounded character.
Overall, this was a light read with some interesting titbits of mythology and a nice little impossible romance.(less)
Lillie is a bitter woman used and abused by her husband and considered an outcaste by society which finds itself needing her to help with the increase...moreLillie is a bitter woman used and abused by her husband and considered an outcaste by society which finds itself needing her to help with the increase in ghostly activity which sometimes poses a risk to the living. When her husband dies in a car accident and his corpse comes back to kill her, somehow she's implicated in his death and has to find a way to exonerate herself as well as dodging further attempts on her life.
Lillie's bitterness colours her perspective. Her terrible experiences with her husband has her seeing men in a negative light. She's also incredibly suspicious of Thresher's interest in her because of her outcaste status as a Talent. Everyone avoids her except those that see her as a trophy lay, a walk on the wild side. And now that she's a widow she's even more attractive because we all know widows are in need of physical touch. She was a likeable character in need of a real friend that isn't afraid of her and can accept her as she is. Thresher seemed to fit the bill though I would've liked to have seen more of him.
In some ways, the Talents are similar to the Animators in Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake series. Both are capable of raising zombies although the opinions on this by the main characters from each series as well as the laws governing them are completely different.
Overall, I liked the plot and was surprised by the tense and scary, well-written showdown which I loved but as a woman also found quite unnerving. I also loved the gentle ending with Lillie and Thresher.
However, the beginning was undefined. I wasn't sure where the beginning was in fact and there was an information overload in an attempt at world-building which if I hadn't been intending to review this book I would've given up quite early on. Perhaps if there was a prologue or something, it would've been easier to take in all the facts. The writing was shaky to begin with but gradually improved. With some editing this could easily be a four-star read.(less)
Although I enjoyed this one, it's more romantic than erotic which I don't mind but it wasn't one of Laurenston's best works. I loved Bobby Ray in The...moreAlthough I enjoyed this one, it's more romantic than erotic which I don't mind but it wasn't one of Laurenston's best works. I loved Bobby Ray in The Mane Event stories and Jessie Ann (aka Jessica Ward) was one of the more "innocent" of the author's heroines but I was hoping for some crazy action with the villain but he was just threatened and brushed aside. Never mind, she's still one of my favourite authors.(less)
EXHIBIT A: First published in hardback with this cover:
It's a mirror image of a statue symbolising the ident...more**spoiler alert** A review in book covers.
EXHIBIT A: First published in hardback with this cover:
It's a mirror image of a statue symbolising the identical twins on opposing sides in the book. It screams dark, gothic and mysterious.
EXHIBIT B: Now available in paperback with this cover:
Now this is an image of two very different girls with an airy fairy silver leaf design which is also present on every page.
I wanted to read EXHIBIT A but when it came to reading the story I got EXHIBIT B. I'll explain further. When I read the description and saw the cover for A I was intrigued, believing it would be an edgy Victorian story. Instead I got a deeply dull fluff piece where all the protagonist, 16-year-old Lia, does is walk, talk and worry. Step, blah, frown lines. Step, blah, frown lines.
I didn't finish. 160/352 pages read. Frustration won. I was defeated when I flipped through the rest and found more of the same. Oh wait, one character dies but I felt nothing even though the author attempts to elicit sympathy for their plight. It didn't work on me.
I don't have any guilt at not finishing this. There was nothing to keep me entertained. No wit, no romance -not really anyway except for an all ready established relationship with 19-year-old James from whom Lia distances herself. Alice, her twin becomes more and more...well, evil. It would've been interesting to have seen things from her perspective. Overall, a stupendous waste of time. (less)
Well, this was different. In a good way, of course. Most books that use mythology tend to stick with the Greek and Roman pantheon, instead this focuse...moreWell, this was different. In a good way, of course. Most books that use mythology tend to stick with the Greek and Roman pantheon, instead this focuses on the Egyptian one. Let me just say that I love Ancient Egypt and it's mythology. I've been to Egypt, visited exhibits and so on so this was something I was eager to read.
Sins of the Heart follows Dagan Krayle, the eldest son of Seth, the Egyptian god of chaos. All of his 4 sons are Darksoul reapers -they reap the souls of evildoers and feed them to their father who consumes their energy, preventing them from having any sort of afterlife and any chance at reincarnation, effectively destroying them completely.
Dagan meets a 19 year old Roxy on a reap of a kidnapper and murderer. She's been kidnapped and is trying to escape. Dagan admires her courage and is tempted to release her though it goes against the rules when she sees him take the heart and soul he came for. He spots her necklace which is of the Daughters of Aset -the enemies of his father. He knows she isn't one of them yet but advises her to stay away from the unless she wants to become his enemy, and though she doesn't want that she feels she has no choice and joins them anyway.
Eleven years later, one of Dagan's brother's has been killed. Seth is furious, he wants vengeance and his son's body so that he can resurrect him and find out who murdered him. Everything points to the Daughters of Aset and in Dagan's investigation he finds a necklace of a dead woman which matches Roxy's and prays she's not dead. He goes searching for her hoping she's leading the normal life he wished for her on the day he broke the rules and let her go free.
There was a lot of world building in the first 200 pages or so which I appreciate but the romance did suffer a bit because of this. There was a brief scene between the Dae and Roxy where they met and then were reunited after those 200 pages so the romance had less time to blossom even though both Dae and Roxy were yearning for each other in the 11 years they were parted.
The plot was solid and interesting though at times a little complicated with 6 or more POVs but I understand why all of these were necessary. The mystery behind which god is backing the destruction of Seth and his kin is a difficult one to guess at with so many different factors involved.
This is a complex book which though confusing at times, I enjoyed. I will definitely be continuing the series very soon so I don't have time to forget anything. 3.5 stars.(less)
**spoiler alert** Ah Aeron, he seemed so without emotion (except wrath of course), so inhuman but boy were we wrong. Olivia lit his emotions up like a...more**spoiler alert** Ah Aeron, he seemed so without emotion (except wrath of course), so inhuman but boy were we wrong. Olivia lit his emotions up like a Christmas tree! I loved Aeron's story but I always find it difficult when Showalter doesn't give us a 100% happy ending. There are sacrifices made and I know these things can't always be perfect but dammit I want them to be!
As for the other characters, well at the moment I really don't like Scarlet (Nightmares) and I'm guessing she will be Gideon's. I love Gideon in this one by the way. His interaction with Olivia was entertaining!
Although I don't particularly like the path Selena is now set on I'm glad that she hopefully will be returned to Paris. It will be interesting to see how she copes with being the very thing she hates. No doubt she will be used as a pawn by Cronus to bargain with the Lords, especially Paris.
William and Gilly, aw their feelings and interactions were so sweet. I hope they become an item in the future when Gilly's a little older. Perhaps she'll be the one to make William settle down.
Galen and Legion -wow, I did not see that coming! He seemed genuinely intrigued with her right up until she tried to kill him. I wonder how he survived her poison and whether he really is intent on revenge or whether he just wants to possess her. Great stuff!(less)