An interesting, solid read about Charlotte whose untimely death led to Victoria becoming queen. Both had difficult childhoods with idiot parents and b...moreAn interesting, solid read about Charlotte whose untimely death led to Victoria becoming queen. Both had difficult childhoods with idiot parents and both became difficult, strong willed but well meaning women. I am always amazed at how inbred that royal bunch was with cousins repeatedly marrying cousins and also all the petty fighting and rivalries. I like the short chapters that moved the story along though at times all the pettiness and fighting grew dull. Overall, this was a good biography that showed its subjects as very real, flawed humans who did quite well considering their upbringing.(less)
This book started as barely 2 stars and by the end had some 4 star moments. It took me a long time to read because I really didn't care for Aryal and...moreThis book started as barely 2 stars and by the end had some 4 star moments. It took me a long time to read because I really didn't care for Aryal and Quentin for over the first half of the book. They took love-hate to a wild new level where they truly hated each other to the point of violently attacking each other and each plotting how to kill the other. I know they are Were, but it was hard to relate to them, I am happy to say. Eventually they fall into lust, engaging in kinky games, then into profound and tender love, which got a bit mawkish to me. The second half was much better as the plot became interesting and the two worked as partners.
Second book in this series. I am enjoying the mysteries, but have some issues with Lee Ofsted. At 23, she is often self-absorbed, insecure, socially i...moreSecond book in this series. I am enjoying the mysteries, but have some issues with Lee Ofsted. At 23, she is often self-absorbed, insecure, socially isolated and judgmental as she struggles to build her career as a pro golfer while running across murders on tour. I do enjoy the behind the scenes look at the golf world, about which I know nothing. I plan to continue reading the series and hope Lee will grow on me and/or grow up a bit.(less)
I thoroughly enjoy this series. The mysteries are quite good but it is the narrator, Chet, who makes every book such great fun. Chet is a dog, so if y...moreI thoroughly enjoy this series. The mysteries are quite good but it is the narrator, Chet, who makes every book such great fun. Chet is a dog, so if you can’t past that, you probably want to take a pass on these books. If you are a dog lover or might get a kick out of a humorous (and at times poignant) take on what a really intelligent dog might be thinking (if he had an amazing command of English), then I highly recommend the series. I especially recommend that you listen to the recorded versions because the narrator does such a fabulous job of making Chet come alive.
Chet’s owner and partner is Bernie Little, a private investigator who is frequently down on his luck despite being very skilled at his work. He tries to avoid things like divorce work and the stories are about prety complicated, at times unusual cases. The Little Detective Agency specializes in finding missing persons, and the Sound and the Furry is about Chet and Bernie going to New Orleans to look for the missing brother of a perp they put away on another case.
Chet is one of the most “real” fictional characters I have come across in a long time. I love his mix of tough guy modern slang and old 40’s detective movies talk. At the same time, he is very much a dog. He has doggy priorities – which often differ from what humans value. He lives in the moment and is easily distracted by sights, sounds and even words. His reactions aren’t always in his immediate control (barking, tail wagging) but he gives his all to be the “total pro” that his beloved Bernie deserves as a partner. Chet feels so real to me that a friend and I have had a number of discussions about what his mix of breeds would be and that as much as we love him (and we do in fact love this imaginary dog), he would be too much for us to handle with all his drive, need to work and strong dominance.
The story does drag down when it gets a bit talky during a few longer interviews with witnesses and suspects. I really shouldn’t complain about that because when the action takes off, I tend to become very nervous. It seems Chet and often Bernie are always in some serious peril in every story. I have always hated stories with animals in peril but when it is Chet who is being hurt, mistreated or in dire straits, I want to freak out, LOL. During an especially tough experience for Chet in this book, I was actually talking to myself to stay calm, that Chet will get through his ordeal, he always does, he is the narrator, Chet will be ok in the end. And of course, Chet is more than ok in the end. He is, as he likes to say, Tip Top and so is this book. (less)
Very interesting and very different take on Livia, the wife of Augusta Ceasar. I am not a big fan of Ancient Rome but found this book hard to put down...moreVery interesting and very different take on Livia, the wife of Augusta Ceasar. I am not a big fan of Ancient Rome but found this book hard to put down. This the author's first novel and I look forward to reading more by her. (less)
I am very much in the minority here but I do not see this as the Kristen Ashley of old. Yes, it was longer t...more1.5 stars. I have hated other books more.
I am very much in the minority here but I do not see this as the Kristen Ashley of old. Yes, it was longer that her recent books. Yes, it had her long rambling descriptions of clothing, decor and little daily dramas. Yes, it has classic KA over the top emotion and angst. And yes, it has the typical KA ultra Alpha, protective, bossy, caring, grunting hero.
So what is not to like? Mainly, there is very little plot and I've decided I need the crazed 4 books worth of plot that KA used to write to not get bogged down in all the overwrought emotions and rambling descriptions. And also her wild plots kept me from focusing too long on her frequently just too perfect, shallow, narcissistic heroines who blather on in excruciating detail while men fall at their feet. Plus, The Will needed a plot to help me stop gnashing my teeth over the bizarrely formal and antiquated way the heroine spoke. For example, Josie repeatedly said, Alas and Indeed. Over and over and over. If you made this book a drinking game, you'd end up in rehab. Though the booze would have blunted my pain over the dialogue.
It isn't that I don't like KA, though I hate her a little bit right now. I have read all the Rock Chick books twice, except for the last, another of her newer publications. I loved many of her books, even with all her faults, because I knew her big sprawling stories were going to be a great ride. I found a couple of her heroes too crude and a couple heroines too self absorbed. The plots were crazy at times, but it all worked and it was great fun.
Now that KA has a real publisher, her books just lack that fun, satisfying ride I knew to expect. Most are short and tame. The Will has all the emotion and details without much plot other than Josie is stunning and everyone young, old, male, female is in awe of her. What plot there was reminded me of previous books. I was so bored, I started skipping pages and scenes and skimming through others. This honestly was almost a DNF.
So I think, until I feel brave enough to try a new KA book again, I will stick with rereading her old works and catching up on the several I haven't read yet. Alas and Indeed. (less)