It's been a while since I sat down and read a book all in one go, so I think that says something about The House of the Four Winds. A fun read, this iIt's been a while since I sat down and read a book all in one go, so I think that says something about The House of the Four Winds. A fun read, this is more of a light-hearted swashbuckler than many of Mercedes Lackey's earlier works. I've really struggled lately to get into any of her newer novels as they all seem to fall rather flat. Some of her recent novels feel like she gave someone the plot outline and had a (not very good) ghostwriter write the thing. I actually LIKED Clarice, Dominick, Kayan, Dr. Chapman, and many of the characters. They were fairly well-rounded, or at least more than flat. The world-building was intriguing, sort of like the Elemental Masters is set in our world in Edwardian times with hidden mages, only this world Misty has built is more of an alternate reality where magic is just another branch of science.
Clarice is a princess and the oldest of 12 princesses and 1 toddler prince in the teeny tiny kingdom of Swansgaarde. The description of Clarice's parents and upbringing made me snort and roll my eyes a bit, thinking "That's rather too convenient." The royal family is super progressive about training their children to each have a trade (a rather convenient plot device, that, and a little too pat) and yet only a son can inherit the throne? Hmm... Anyway, the royal treasury can't afford 12 doweries, so it's decided that each of the princesses will go to seek their fortune at age 18. (Also rather convenient plot device for a series.) Clarice studied swordsmanship for her "trade," so she decided to go seek adventure and make a name for herself, disguised as a man.
I devour anything with even a whiff of a fairytale about it, and this book had a lovely fairytale feel to it. I also love gender-benders and the girl-masquerading-as-a-guy trope, which this book is also chock full of. All in all, I really liked it and plan to pop onto Amazon and see when the next book comes out as soon as I finish writing this review. While what I really want is another book in the 500 Kingdoms series, perhaps Misty is out of ideas there; this will do instead. :)...more
I was actually pretty disappointed in this book, after the former two were much better. Felt the character development was pretty shallow and made somI was actually pretty disappointed in this book, after the former two were much better. Felt the character development was pretty shallow and made some leaps that didn't make much sense. It's hard to do a retelling of the 12 Dancing Princesses because there are so MANY characters, and it was hard to keep them all straight and give them each their own unique personality without making them more caricatures than fleshed out characters. However, I did think Ms. George did a wonderful job of interweaving her take on the Little Red Riding Hood story into this 12 Dancing Princesses tale - it was interesting and fun to read. Maybe I'm getting old and am just expecting too much from a YA novel!...more
In the reverse of what is normally true, this is a novelization of the movie The 10th Kingdom (rather than being the book the movie was based on). MucIn the reverse of what is normally true, this is a novelization of the movie The 10th Kingdom (rather than being the book the movie was based on). Much of the dialogue is word for word, but I think I might have a slight preference for the book because my brain makes Wolf MUCH more suave and debonair then the people who made the movie did. I lurve Wolf. =)...more
Not at all what I was expecting, but still a great read! The story is about a Godmother who comes to grant the wish of Rose, a Seattle social worker,Not at all what I was expecting, but still a great read! The story is about a Godmother who comes to grant the wish of Rose, a Seattle social worker, to give her a hand with her caseload. In The Godmother, Scarborough suggests that many modern-day situations are variations on themes told in the fairy tales of old, though in these modern times the stories often get convoluted and mixed with other stories.
The Godmother has a lot of characters, most of them revolving in some way around our social-worker leading lady Rose and her well-intentioned but sometimes mixed-up Godmother, Felicity Fortune. Fairy tales you may recognize include Cinderella, Snow White, Hansel & Gretel, Puss In Boots, and The Magic Flute, among others. And these aren't your Disney-fied fairy tales, either - they are modern interpretations on the original gruesome and often "Grimm" tales of old.
The story is fast-paced and involving, though it could be easy to get lost in the rather large jumble of characters at play. Also, the characters are all, for the most part, very multi-faceted and well thought out, though not very deep. Or if they are deep, we don't get to see that depth. Scarborough seems to focus more on moving the action forward then fully developing her characters, which I suppose is necessary with such a large cast. Still, a great story, though at times the writing style or storyline seems to falter a bit. Also no real development of Rose, who I saw as supposed to be the main character, throughout.
If The Godmother were a movie, it would have to be rated R for language, violence, sexual explicitness, and themes of rape, incest and pedophilia. That being said, I rate it a firm 5 stars. ...more
Don't bother with this book. Poorly written, the dialogue was extremely forced, full of poor puns and jokes that falls completely flat. Characters areDon't bother with this book. Poorly written, the dialogue was extremely forced, full of poor puns and jokes that falls completely flat. Characters are unbelievable and uninteresting. Storyline was mediocre at best. Don't waste your time....more
I didn't like this 2nd book in the Rogue Agent series nearly as much as I liked the 1st book (The Accidental Sorcerer). This book focuses more on theI didn't like this 2nd book in the Rogue Agent series nearly as much as I liked the 1st book (The Accidental Sorcerer). This book focuses more on the girls - Melissande, Monk's sister Bibbie, and Reg, as the founders of Witches Incorporated. It sort of reminded me of Nancy Drew, as everyone seems to have a case and are working on solving some mystery or other. "The Case Of The Biscuit Thief." The few times Gerald does pop up, he's not nearly as lovable as he was in the 1st book, though he's still a good character.
All in all, this book seemed more contrived than the 1st book. Where reading "The Accidental Sorcerer" made me hungry for more, after ready "Witches Incorporated" it's rather a toss-up whether I'll bother reading the 3rd book or not....more
Lovely book with fun, laughable, lovable characters. I really felt for poor bumbling Gerald, was intrigued by his talking bird-friend Reg, and was altLovely book with fun, laughable, lovable characters. I really felt for poor bumbling Gerald, was intrigued by his talking bird-friend Reg, and was alternately in love with and infuriated by Princess Melissande. I read this book all in one go because I just could NOT put it down. After reading it, I jumped up and quick looked to see if there was anything else by K.E. Mills I could read, and wasn't I just pleased as punch to see this is the first in a series? (Book 2 - Witches Incorporated - was, sadly, not anywhere near as good as book 1.)...more
This book was better back when I was 10, but it will always be my very first favorite book. Keep in mind that this was written back in 1983 when ther This book was better back when I was 10, but it will always be my very first favorite book. Keep in mind that this was written back in 1983 when there was a dearth of strong heroines in fiction before you start complaining you've seen this character a hundred times.
Loved this book when I was 10, so much that I still go back and reread the series every few years. :) I wish I could still love it with the bang and pizazz that I used to when I was a tweenie, but I look forward to introducing my children to these books and watching them fall in love with them. I really looked up to Alanna as a child, and am glad to have had her as a strong female role model. I'll make sure my daughters (and sons!) get to know her as well. :)...more