This was an interesting premise that fell flat. I was disappointed when I got to the end, and frankly skipped over a chunl of the journey from one sid...moreThis was an interesting premise that fell flat. I was disappointed when I got to the end, and frankly skipped over a chunl of the journey from one side of America through Europe. It needed to be about... oh, 65 pages shorter. But yeah, a spirit of death taking a jpyride in Rasputin's body and taking on the Romanov children Anastasia and Alexis as his apprentices. Brilliant concept! I wish it were written better. I wanted to love it, but I only just liked it.(less)
Well, I read 155 pages and made it to the "final battle/confrontation"... or at least the penultimate confrontation and decided I would just stop righ...moreWell, I read 155 pages and made it to the "final battle/confrontation"... or at least the penultimate confrontation and decided I would just stop right there. The reason...the only thing that compelled me to start reading this book is that Harrison is coming to the store I work at. And this is in my section... And from everything I was reading online about this particular book this is not the book to start with (and it's short!).
Don't get me wrong, I am intrigued with her writing... it's really what helped to get me through that far, but for this particular author I feel like this is a poor introduction to her work as I am otherwise unread in the Harrison cannon. Because this is so short it seemed a natural choice.. I wanted to see if it's worthwhile reading several of her other books.
Here's my gripes about this book. In a nutshell, I'm confused. I started this book confused about the mythos Harrison was trying to create and I'm still confused half a book later. Angels and demons are grim reapers and they each have a good/evil side...fine and good...but, beyond that, where is the real conflict? There is supposedly some baddie walking about named Kairos that protagonist Madison is supposed to be uber terrified of (because he killed her and she acquired a source of his power upon her death in the form of an amulet, which he is trying to retrieve)...but why is he evil besides Harrison just saying he is? The conflict feels under developed and self-imposed. The reader comes into this feeling as though they are missing an entire back story...at least I very much did. Is this some sort of mythology she has set up in her "Hollows" series, because... if so... she's purposefully mystifying new readers by not cluing them in on the game. I feel like I came into the series in the midst of a second book...and I never like to feel that out of the loop with regards to worldbuilding. Particularly because it doesn't take much effort to do. If Harrison would have devoted a good chapter to the worlbuilding she would have had me at hello. Or at the very least "my name is"...
so... yeah... solid 2 stars. The only reason it ranked that high is because I made it through two thirds of it. I guess I liked Madison... or maybe it was Josh and Madison... it had to be something. I'm not turned off enough to shudder away from Harrison (yet) but I think it's safe to say that I effectively knocked 2 books off my "to be read" list. I cannot see myself reading the sequel to this when the first got abandoned so quickly. (less)
...and so ends the great Melissa Marr reread of 2010... or in this book's case "first read". Le sigh. Darkest Mercy was the whole reason I decided the...more ...and so ends the great Melissa Marr reread of 2010... or in this book's case "first read". Le sigh. Darkest Mercy was the whole reason I decided the reread was in order in the first place. Now that they are over... sigh... where do we go now?
I'll miss the feel of these books...the jumping around within the world, the game of "tag-you're-it" that comes into play within the character dynamic. Reading these books all in a row is a little challenging. Marr is dark... really dark, and each book falls into this world in a completely different relation to each other. It becomes a little hard whilst reading them piled on top of one another. These books are really emotionally demanding of the reader. I think I would almost rather do it spaced out (hey, that's what release dates are for!). However, overall... the series is wonderful, and this book makes a perfect ending.
All of the Courts are in chaos. Bananach's discord is stirring up something wicked. One of the leaders has been killed and everyone is reeling from the impact of this action. Bananach must pay and the war has been joined. However, war is precisely what Bananach is after.
I cannot say much more than that or the entire book will be spoiled for everyone. Rest assured that things fall into place in typical Marr finesse.. and with typical Marr plot twists. Seriously. Don't expect anything from the ending of this book. You're going to be surprised. I was. I still am.
Darkest Mercy will be in stores Feb. 22nd 2011. Until then you just have to trust me that it well deserves a perfect 5 out of 5 stars. I loved it. I'm sad it's done, but I cannot wait to see what Marr conjures up next time around.
Graveminder is Melissa Marr's first foray into the adult fiction market. I was so excited to read it when I saw the description over a year ago. I ado...more Graveminder is Melissa Marr's first foray into the adult fiction market. I was so excited to read it when I saw the description over a year ago. I adore Marr, her narrative style and dark atmosphere are always up my alley. However, I did not love this book...which is a bloody shame.
In Claysville the dead walk unless they are kept in their graves by the Graveminder. It's the Graveminder's job to ensure that the dead stay dead. Maylene Barrow is the current Graveminder and she has just been murdered. Rebekkah is a Barrow by choice but she has made an effort to come back to Claysville very rarely. She returns for the funeral and her past begins to haunt her in more ways than one.
Most of this book reads like Young Adult. I was expecting a more adult tale and this, I'm afraid, is not it. It feels very YA in execution right down to the inordinate amount of sexual tension between the main character and her love interest. I went into this really wanting to be smitten. I wasn't. The mythos could have been much crisper and, frankly, more dealt with. Unfortunately so much of this book is about the romance, or, more to the point, Rebekkah pushing away the romance. I got over it real quick. It just felt like a disappointing direction for Marr to take.
I really wanted to love this, but alas... I skimmed the last 75 pages. That's bad. 2 out of 5 stars.
I love the WVMP books by Jeri Smith-Ready. They make me happy. Last night I picked up Bring on the Night... and I just finished it. They're fun, they'...moreI love the WVMP books by Jeri Smith-Ready. They make me happy. Last night I picked up Bring on the Night... and I just finished it. They're fun, they're quick. They are a hell of a read.
I think I liked this one the best so far. Smith-Ready always manages to tell very inventive stories, but in this one she has surpassed herself. In the town of Sherwood, Ohio there is a fatal outbreak of a very extreme bout of chicken pox. At the same time Ciara and company encounter the walking dead, zombies!
The story gets really tasty from there. Lots of character developments that made me squeal aloud, lots of surprises. It won't mean much if you haven't read Wicked Game or Bad to the Bone but it made me very happy.
...and playlists!! I love it when authors include playlists to their books. Jeri Smith-Ready and Rachel Caine do this with their books. Music nerd that I am, I always compile them from what I have in my i-tunes. Interesting to note, I was reading a very good sex scene in this book when Marilyn Manson's cover of Sweet Dreams came on in the playlist. Kinda Hot. Not gonna lie. I was into it.
... why yes, I do blog with this mouth. Frequently...
Suffice it to say I liked this book. A lot. I want the next one. Badly. A year off? Bugger. A whole year will reduce me to a shuddering pile of want. It's a pity really.
5 of 5 stars. This really is the best WVMP book so far.
Charlie Madigan died 8 months ago and was resurrected. Now she experiences a host of bizarre side effects…the ability to see people’s auras for one. S...moreCharlie Madigan died 8 months ago and was resurrected. Now she experiences a host of bizarre side effects…the ability to see people’s auras for one. She’s also experiencing horrible nightmares which influence her sleep and creep into her days. Charlie works for the ITF, or the Integration Task Force, policing the good and the baddies that are finding their way from the nearby dimensional planes. Charbydon and Elysia resemble heaven and hell, and they definitely have there share of angels and demons.
When a girl at a local school goes comatose, likely under the influence of a terrible new street drug named “ash”, Charlie is called in to investigate. The case hits home because the young woman, one Amanda Mott, is close to Charlie’s daughter, Emma. Charlie vows to help Amanda anyway she can, but when the case takes several different directions it’s all Charlie can do to not bring those she loves into it.
“The Better Part of Darkness” is an interesting read. However, I’m not sure if I will go rushing for the sequel. At first I felt like I was just re-reading Kim Harrison’s “Hollows” series with a slightly different mythos. It becomes apparent quite quickly that this initial impression is flawed. The Christian overtones add some interest, as does the fact that Charlie is a mother (Something one doesn’t always find in the Urban Fantasy/Paranormal genre)… however, I’m not wowed. Will I handsell it to my customers. Yes, very likely. Will I keep it around to put in people’s hands for “A very different read”…probably… so why wasn’t I wowed?
Maybe it gets better in the second book… a distinct possibility.
…Maybe it suffered from being read just after I finished Caragh O’Brien’s “Birthmarked”… an extreme probability. Whenever I find something I’m uber giddy geeked about (as I am with Birthmarked) the next read always suffers a tad. Fact.
So, what’s wrong with the read? It’s got a great premise? It’s got a great heroine? It’s got a lot of interesting diverse mythos, and I enjoyed reading it. Let’s chalk it up to poor timing, and leave it at that. I liked it. I guess I wanted to like it more, but four of five stars is still pretty good.
Poor timing. Sorry, Kelly Gay. It’s entirely my fault. Or, at the very least, blame Caragh O’Brien. (less)
I first heard about Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton by chance. I happened upon it online and thought it would make a good read and put it on my...more I first heard about Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton by chance. I happened upon it online and thought it would make a good read and put it on my radar. A month later I was contacted by the author directly, as she lives in the same area as I do. What a coincidence! What a wonderful twist of luck... of course I'll read your book... wait, you want to do an event at our store?! Sure... let's talk.
Of course this kind of intimacy of working with local authors is fraught with peril... what if you read the book and don't like it? What if you host an event and no one comes? What if it's all wrong? What if I have to make believe that I like the book just to secure everything? The back and forth possibilities are endless. Fortunately, I'm happy to say, I have just finished Angelfire. And I loved it. Honest and for true.
The mythos behind the madness is quite interesting. Ellie lives in mid-Michigan (holla!) and discovers that she is the Preliator - host to an ancient power that allows her to kill hellish demons called reapers. At her side is many-century-year-old Will. Will has been her Guardian since his beginning. It's what he was created for... to serve and protect. Will also acts as her teacher figure to help her learn to hone her abilities as they manifest.
As Ellie learns more about her destiny she finds herself yearning for the simplicity of her past... for movie nights with her friends, and a time when she didn't have to lie to her parents every day. Relationships are strained, and Ellie is pushed to her limits...but she cannot let the bad guys win, no matter the cost.
I found this book extremely refreshing. Perhaps it's my three-book-streak-of-fail preceding this one. Perhaps it's in the execution. The action writing is crisp and sharp and the dialogue rings true. I know that Angels vs. Demons and Heaven/Hell YA stories are becoming the new Vampires... and I must learn to accept that. My general consensus on that trend are Fallen/Dark angels, yes... goody two-shoes angels, no. This falls somewhere securely in the middle of type, but still jazzes me to read the sequels. It's not overly preachy or God-y either. Squee! Angel books I can read! Joy.
Waiting for the next one... waiting waiting waiting... Maybe she'll set it in East Lansing and I can really be wigged out on all things familiar. They keep talking about MSU... it's not that far of a stretch. Battling reapers on my home turf? Awesome. And weird. And awesome.
5 of 5 stars. Ms. Moulton, kudos! To repeat - I can't wait for the next one.