This was one of those books where I had to stop and ask myself, what's more important- sleep or finishing this story. The story won.
Ethan, Who Loved...moreThis was one of those books where I had to stop and ask myself, what's more important- sleep or finishing this story. The story won.
Ethan, Who Loved Carter is the story of two beautiful souls, brought together by what could be nothing less than fate or destiny. Carter is twenty-four and has lived with tourette's syndrome his whole life. Ethan, a couple years older, suffered a brain injury a decade prior.
This portrayal had me in tears throughout the story. The honesty and innocence of Ethan were such blessings to read, and the depiction seemed so authentic. And Carter, what an amazing person. Their love for each other made my heart soar.
Some of the moments in the story were tender and sweet, others humorous to where I laughed out loud. Other times I wept, both from sadness and joy. This range of emotion the story evoked served as evidence of how well this novel was crafted. A beautifully written, beautiful story.(less)
The haunting beauty of this author's lyrical prose cut through my soul. But God, the story itself is so achingly tragic. Sad. Bitterly and painfully h...moreThe haunting beauty of this author's lyrical prose cut through my soul. But God, the story itself is so achingly tragic. Sad. Bitterly and painfully heartbraking. After reading Day of the Dead, my body aches. I feel emotionally spent.
And you know, stories like this win awards. All kinds of them, because the literary people, they just love misery. If only this remarkably talented author could use his gift to write a story with a happily-ever after ending...that would really, really please me.
But I glanced at some of the other ratings, and I have to say it truly irks me that people honestly think they are supposed to rate books on whether or not they LIKED them. No, that is not the basis for rating a story. The rating should reflect the quality of the literature, not the reader's personal preferences. And with that being said, I could give this story nothing less than five stars.
My only criticism is that the story is billed a romance, and clearly it is not. Not by any definition, really. The story is about grief in the aftermath of a romantic relationship. The characterization is perfect. The clever manner in which the story is diced up into a non-linear plot proved very effective. And the uniqueness of the alternating narrative styles (third person limited, and second person)every other chapter, is something I haven't seen before. But it definitely worked.
Overall, it's an amazing book, the first by this author I've read. It won't be the last.(less)
Some authors study very hard and painstakingly hone their word-crafting skills. Others simply seem to have a natural talent. I suspect the latter is t...moreSome authors study very hard and painstakingly hone their word-crafting skills. Others simply seem to have a natural talent. I suspect the latter is true of this author, James Erich. I've read so much mediocre prose within this genre that when an author comes along who's able to tell a story in a manner that carries the reader along so fluidly as this, I feel truly blessed and thankful to have participated merely as a reader. I feel very humbled--very small--after reading this author's writing. I too am a writer, with a fraction of this talent.
Angry, happy, bitter, celebratory, uncontrollable tears flooded my eyes as I read the final chapters of this heart-stopping novel. I just wanted to scream, KOREH! KOREH!
I can't say more, not without spoilers. But whoah...what a magnificent continuation of an already spectacular story. The world-building skills demonstrated within this book were mind-blowing.
A part of me is tempted to rush out and buy book three so I can find out what happens, but emotionally I'm torn to shreds at this point. I need some time to recover, if you will. This one is definitely going into my all-time favorites category.
When I bought this book I wasn't aware it's book five in the series, so now I'm going to have to go back and snag the first four. I really loved the s...moreWhen I bought this book I wasn't aware it's book five in the series, so now I'm going to have to go back and snag the first four. I really loved the story--great mystery. It has an Indiana Jones type feel. The main character, Ian, is a renowned archaeologist who's particularly passionate about the Mayan history and culture. When one of his admirers bequeaths him an unusual artifact, he traces the origins to the Mayans and travels to South America to decipher it's actual history. Accompanying Ian is his partner, a trucker named Mac. They've become partners in life as well as in their expeditions.
Hot sex scenes are interspersed throughout the story, and the romance is very sweet and at times comical. Overall, this seems like a great series.(less)
OMG! I have a new favorite Claire Thompson book! I absolutely loved this story. It touched my heart so deeply.
At first I wasn't sure I was doing to l...moreOMG! I have a new favorite Claire Thompson book! I absolutely loved this story. It touched my heart so deeply.
At first I wasn't sure I was doing to like it because it's one of those stories where the main characters meet under false pretenses. Reese accepts a bet from his rich friend that he can't get the nerdiest guy in his office to sleep with him within a week. The nerd is a guy named Jeff, one of the computer programmers. Although in the beginning Reese's interest in Jeff is strictly based upon his selfish monetary interests, he of course falls in love for real.
Okay, so yeah, we've all seen this trope before, but it's so beautifully written, and the two main characters are absolutely perfect for each other. I fell head over heels in love with Jeff. He was everything a gay guy should not be. He has no fashion sense. He's nerdy and has a bad haircut. He doesn't care about being classy and doesn't have a pretentious bone in his body.
Reese, on the other hand, is a playboy. He wears the flashy clothes and eats at the upper class restaurants. He has swag and he knows it. But he is swept right off his feet by Jeff, and his heart begins to beat again as he discovers what life and love are all about. It's such a beautiful story.
The villain is a complete asshole, but hey, isn't he supposed to be? He was so pathetic I kind of felt sorry for him. Hank is Reese's longtime friend, the one who made the original wager. He becomes insanely jealous when he discovers Reese has actually fallen in love with Jeff. He does everything in his power to destroy their relationship.
After reading so much mediocre romance, it's truly refreshing to find a story like this. Claire Thompson writes such beautiful, gripping prose. This one will definitely go into my "all time favorites" category. (My only criticism is that it needs a better cover. I hate those naked torso covers.)(less)
When I began reading this book, I was taken aback by the writing style. I knew within a few paragraphs that the author's native language was not Engli...moreWhen I began reading this book, I was taken aback by the writing style. I knew within a few paragraphs that the author's native language was not English. The biggest clues were verb tense and sentence structure. It read like a poor translation from Spanish where perhaps it had been translated simply by copying and pasting the entire text into Google Translate.
I collect books on my Kindle and often do not remember where I've purchased or downloaded them, and in this case, I'd forgotten that the book was a free download. When I went back to investigate, I discovered the author indeed did not speak English as his native language, and when he began posting this free story online he was only fourteen years old.
So I decided to continue reading, and I wasn't sorry. After a few pages, I got used to mentally correcting/adjusting the grammar and simply focused on the amazing story. This book is like a gay teen paranormal smorgasbord. It features an endearing protagonist named Jordan who has imprinted with the hottest guy in school, jock superstar Jace Andrews. Both Jordan and Jace are werewolves, and therefore they mate for life with the partner who shares their soul (in other words, their soul mate).
The only problem is that Jordan can't stand Jace. Jace has always bullied him from the time Jordan was a small child, and Jordan detests the idea of sharing any part of his life with this obnoxious jerk. Yet physically and sexually he's drawn to Jace. So he wages a powerful internal struggle.
The author includes a variety of unique supernatural creatures, an exciting sporting event, and a hilarious family dynamic. The cast of secondary characters is also remarkable.
Overall, I absolutely loved the 377 page story, and I'm dying for more. I'd love for someone to edit the grammar and professionally publish it. This author has amazing talent. (less)
Alex Norris's first novel, Angel, tackles a really tough topic. His main character, Lewis Blake, is a university student attending Cambridge. Lewis go...moreAlex Norris's first novel, Angel, tackles a really tough topic. His main character, Lewis Blake, is a university student attending Cambridge. Lewis goes out one evening with a group of friends and encounters a homeless woman on the street. He befriends her and learns of a mission that provides meals for the homeless. Lewis volunteers.
He feels so conflicted, tortured by guilt and an overwhelming sense of helplessness. He desperately wants to help these unfortunate people, but his volunteer efforts seem so futile and ineffective. He wants to do more, and his desire to make a real difference leads him to make some unconventional choices--some self-destructive choices.
Although I often struggle with first person narratives where the internal voice of the protagonist is cynical or sarcastic, I really sympathized with Lewis. I fully understood his dilemma and the myriad feelings that plagued him. He felt like a hypocrite because he'd been afforded so many amenities that he and those around him took for granted. As he began his volunteer work, he began to realize that it was more an exercise in assuaging his own conscience than it was a realistic way to significantly improve the lives of those less fortunate.
I think he felt unworthy, like he couldn't understand why he'd been so lucky to be given opportunities others hadn't. I think he realized that all the petty drama in his day to day life was minuscule and absurd compared to the challenges the homeless people faced. He began to question everything. What's the point in studying literature...in studying anything? What's the purpose? Where's the justice in the world? Why do some people have so much while others have nothing?
This story really moved me, touched my heart, in a way few other books ever have. It's memorable, thought-provoking, and borderline eerie in the sense that it causes the reader to look inward.
Some of Lewis's internal dialogue disturbed me...I've got to be honest. I didn't like the way he put people down for their looks or their age. But I also understood this. It's very common, especially with young gay men. Anyone over thirty is ancient and creepy, at least when viewed in a sexual context. And Lewis himself is young and slender with a beautiful face (at least that's my interpretation). So I understand his perspective.
I don't think this story is supposed to be tidy with a feel-good HEA. It's more a slice of life. Lewis matures in the course of this story. He learns some valuable lessons, and the thing I liked most about this character was that he was so beautifully flawed. At times he was vain, hypocritical, and ego-centric. Yet he was so compassionate and generous. I guess we could debate his motives, but I think the point of the story is to get us to question our own motives for our generosity (or lack thereof).
The theme of Angel was surprisingly deep, and I've got to admit it's one of the best stories I've read this year. I'm very impressed, not only by the writing, but also by the story itself. (less)