The Smart Bitches got me to pick this one up with a single tweet, detailing a hero I had to read: tall, muscular, tattooed, bearded, virgin hero. WithThe Smart Bitches got me to pick this one up with a single tweet, detailing a hero I had to read: tall, muscular, tattooed, bearded, virgin hero. With a man bun. I mean, how can you not??
And he was worth the one-click. Football is not my thing, so the sportsy aspect left me a bit cold, but all the steamy sex made up for it. And there's a dishonest, bitchy character who gets an epic comeuppance, which is super satisfying. It turns out that I already had another book in this series on my tbr, so chances seem good that my vacation reading will be awesome....more
And here I thought the Spindle Cove series was over. I'm thrilled to find out that I was wrong.
This has everything that Tessa Dare fans in general lovAnd here I thought the Spindle Cove series was over. I'm thrilled to find out that I was wrong.
This has everything that Tessa Dare fans in general love (a modern sensibility set within a historical setting and presented with a little wink), but it also had a couple of things that I specifically am a huge fan of. First, the cabin romance. Snowed in with nothing better to do is one of my favorite tropes. Second, I'm not telling. Because it wasn't immediately apparent, and it's one of my favorite things. I was delighted by it. (Hint: you see it in Outlander.)
The only reason this doesn't get more stars from me is the whole novella thing. It's so rare that I walk away from a novella feeling completely satisfied. Mary Ann Rivers comes to mind as one of the few who, for me, has mastered the short format. But still, it was a delightful way to spend a couple of hours on my day off, and I'm excited to hear that at least one more complete Spindle Cove novel is on its way!
**A copy of the book was provided by the publisher via Edelweiss....more
Favorite moment: the heroine snapping and tearing the hero a new one. Nothing is more satisfying than a hefty dose of righteous anger. Especially whenFavorite moment: the heroine snapping and tearing the hero a new one. Nothing is more satisfying than a hefty dose of righteous anger. Especially when that anger is slow to manifest.
Cheers to Victoria Dahl on her intrepid entry into self-publishing! Bringing civilization to the wilderness.
**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley...more
I'm not entirely sure what I just read. But I didn't hate it.
Here's what I think is going on: the main character, Kate, lives with her transgender besI'm not entirely sure what I just read. But I didn't hate it.
Here's what I think is going on: the main character, Kate, lives with her transgender best friend and a living clock cat. She lives in a world where there are animal people and robots and ghosts and curses. She's the daughter of a famous adventurer, but she doesn't do the adventure thing anymore. And there's some sort of secret in her family tree that's putting her life at risk. It's kind of a chaotic read, because even after reading the entire first trade I'm still not sure what's happening. You don't get any kind of an intro into the world. At all. You get flashbacks interspersed with current happenings. And I'm not sure why it's called Shutter. I assume that will become important...?
I will say, though, that the art was fun and it was action-packed. If you can deal with a bit of chaos and uncertainty, it's not a terrible read. It kept getting better, and I'm curious enough that I might even try volume two....more
I'm not sure where I first heard about this book, but wherever it was it didn't give me tons of confidence about it. Reactions seem to be kind of mixeI'm not sure where I first heard about this book, but wherever it was it didn't give me tons of confidence about it. Reactions seem to be kind of mixed, plus that title. It sounds so... wink and a smile. Self aware. I don't know. But it seems cheeky in an unpleasant way. (Why did I pick this up? I'm not even sure anymore...) And if I'm being honest, the first couple dozen pages didn't inspire much extra confidence. I actually set it down and didn't pick it up for... let's just say a while.
However! Once I gave it a bit of a chance, I actually started having lots of fun. The snarky author comments at the bottom of the page started to feel charming instead of just distracting. The world they built became really interesting. The discussion that ends up being the focus, about heroism and doing good and wanting to do bad, was super interesting. I walk away satisfied....more
I'm not sure exactly what it was, but some secret charm-granting element was missing in volume two. Some of the things that I liked about volume one,I'm not sure exactly what it was, but some secret charm-granting element was missing in volume two. Some of the things that I liked about volume one, like the exclamations of great women in history or friendship to the max, didn't sparkle quite like they did. I'm not sure if it was because they were struggling to keep that fresh, or just because I was less invested in this section of the story. I still liked the characters and the tone, but the mythology elements seemed out of place. I'm not so turned off that I'll quit reading, but I admit to some disappointment....more
I've never read Gayle Callen before, so the only thing I can figure is that I read a review of this in some journal and the whole kidnapping/road tripI've never read Gayle Callen before, so the only thing I can figure is that I read a review of this in some journal and the whole kidnapping/road trip trope caught my attention. I know! Kidnapping followed by a road trip. Sounds like a lot. But wait! There's more! You'll also get a case of mistaken identity, and if you act quickly you'll be eligible for a marriage of convenience. (While supplies last.) It sounds like a lot, but somehow it all works together and makes sense, and manages to avoid the Old Skool rapey tone that could've so easily taken over. Instead it ended up feeling like an extended seduction, which is a thing I really respond to. Plus, kilts.
If you can't roll with some ridiculous, this may not be the book for you. (Although if you picked up a book about a hero who kidnaps the wrong bride I don't feel a bit sorry for you.) It feels like it should've been a lot easier to get to the truth, but we all know that when things make sense, the crazy is less fun. So if you like hijinks with your love stories, go for it! It was nearly a one-sitting read for me, and I'll be continuing with book two when it's out....more
OK. I've been pondering what to say about this book, and I think I've settled on "It's important. Read it."
It challenged me to approach things from aOK. I've been pondering what to say about this book, and I think I've settled on "It's important. Read it."
It challenged me to approach things from a new perspective, which wasn't always comfortable for me. That's how I know it's good. Here's my advice: if you're reading this book, or any book written from or for a marginalized audience, and you feel attacked or defensive, take a moment. That feeling of defensiveness is a signal that at least something rang true. Find out what it is, and address it. (I know. Easier said than done.) This is the only way that we, meaning people, can become better and more thoughtful. Don't just react. Think. You still may not agree with everything that you read, but if you come out the other side completely unchanged, you're doing it wrong. The discomfort means you're changing, which means it's worth doing.
So, yeah. Sometimes reading this book made me feel slightly uncomfortable, like I was fighting the guilt response. (I was raised Catholic. I'm super familiar with the guilt response.) It was worth fighting through to get closer to the understanding on the other side. I'm not going to say that now I get what it's like to be Black in America. That would be presumptuous and, frankly, condescending. But I do understand what it's like to be a woman in America, and that was my doorway that got me closer to getting it. I don't feel qualified to offer a more nuanced critique or discussion, so all I really want to say is that this is worth reading. You should really read it if you consider yourself a serious person who's concerned with the state of the world. Also, I think it's going to win the National Book Award. So if all else fails, read it so you can say you read it before it was an award winner....more