I'd read 105 pages and put it aside, because that bossy scientist-mother-figure exercised too much willpower for my taste as her plans for her young,I'd read 105 pages and put it aside, because that bossy scientist-mother-figure exercised too much willpower for my taste as her plans for her young, genial friend were concerned. On top of all the regular weirdness and the YA-like virginity/first kiss-issue-stuff (this isn't YA, is it? I am not sure anmore.) her manipulative manner annoyed me to bits. That must be the reason why I cannot muster enough interest or energy to go back to to story. Probably the wrong decision, but one I will live with easily, I guess....more
Gave up shortly before hitting the 30% mark. My spare time is definitely too precious to waste on boring and puffed-up-to-look-sinister, historial chiGave up shortly before hitting the 30% mark. My spare time is definitely too precious to waste on boring and puffed-up-to-look-sinister, historial chicklit....more
I have read more than half of this self-published human-robot-romance-I-wanna-be-a-romantic-thriller-desaster that declares it has been professionallyI have read more than half of this self-published human-robot-romance-I-wanna-be-a-romantic-thriller-desaster that declares it has been professionally edited, but makes the plain mistake of informing the reader twice about the same thing right in the first chapter.
The worst is the character inconsistency. Or ... no, the cheesiness ... no, the lack of believable plot, .... or, the evil, evil bad guys. I don't know. Everything appears to be unbelievably unfinished, unplanned, childish, raw. I do not think this is worth the already cheap price that is demanded for it. No. ...more
The highly praised "classic" series' starter in dragon fantasy ... I expected so much, but I didn't anticipate that I would tun away bored, fed up witThe highly praised "classic" series' starter in dragon fantasy ... I expected so much, but I didn't anticipate that I would tun away bored, fed up with most of the characters and absolutely uninterested in the general outcome after 175 pages of which the first 30 were even reasonably exciting. Well. I had to try. The now 50 years-old Pern Chronicles are simple too famous not to give them a chance....more
Heavens! How enthusiastically annoying. I gave up around 8%. Rather early, I know. But since my annoyance is character-based I am quite confident in mHeavens! How enthusiastically annoying. I gave up around 8%. Rather early, I know. But since my annoyance is character-based I am quite confident in my decision "book+I=disaster"....more
His curls are a dark jungle, bis black jeans (extra-extra-longs) are grubby, which is perfectly normal, but now he's wearing a khaki T-Shirt two sizesHis curls are a dark jungle, bis black jeans (extra-extra-longs) are grubby, which is perfectly normal, but now he's wearing a khaki T-Shirt two sizes too small. The front of it reads Jesus loves you - Everybody else thinks you're a wanker.
Although I don't exactly know what I had expected - apart from great chemistry, extra-ordinary writing and mystery, because no other than brilliant Cath Crawley! blurbed the young adult Aussie Sherlock Holmes retelling, I can safely say it wasn't this.
My main problems consists of the two main characters. I don't get them, I don't get their relationship, I don't like them. James Mycroft (I know the original Holmes isn't particularly endearing either) even repulses me somehow. His slobbery, pig-style method to eat with his hands, his dirty clothes, his chain-smoking habit, his conviction that if you small-talk to the bus drivers (view spoiler)[ or any people in the service providing industry (hide spoiler)] often enough, they gratefully feel your friendship and let you hop on for free, his aloofness that borders on stupidity. When I entered his room, Christmas twinkle lights and all, together with slightly childish, neighbor-besotted heroine Rachel Watts (Watson), I had the strong nasal impression that it must smell unbearably rancid and sweaty-socked. That multi-sensual picture firmly settled itself in my mind before the teenage hobby detectives stuff the rest of the dinner Mycroft had dragged his greedy fingers through into a container or bag to offer their homeless friend in front of the zoo. It turned out to be so off-putting that I have a faint reminder on my palate a day later.
Strangely the ripped jugular of the victim and the consequent gut-spilling did not effect me at all. I repeat: The problem is the characters. Relatable characters are the most important thing for me in any book, chicklit, crime story or dystopia.
There is no way I am going to fall for the duo in the course of this story. Thus I stopped reading at the 17% mark and deleted the sequel from my electronic TBR pile....more
Apparently this is a typical case of "Its not the book, it's me".
So you won't hear me mutter complaints concerning the hero's shitty comments about hApparently this is a typical case of "Its not the book, it's me".
So you won't hear me mutter complaints concerning the hero's shitty comments about homosexuality etc. For it is clear that he is supposed to be an ultra-jerk who hides his sensitivity or his thoughtfulness ... or his overall wonderful personality under a layer of pain and carefully constructed a-am-an-ass-don't-you-see-armor. He will improve and the leap from knock-him-into-a-wall-annoying to awww-the-cute-and-caring-sexy-boyfriend will be sweeter and more acute because the huge contrast will shine and twinkle like a 100 Watt bulb. That means: Everything is fine in California. I've got nothing to criticize.
I am just bored with plot, scenery and characters - especially that girl's mom. Bored enough to throw the towel at 7/%. And, yes, I know it isn't fair to distribute stars based on that tiny bit of reading experience, but since there is no danger of dragging that solid and sturdy ferry to the bottom of the sea anyway, I don't feel particularly bad about it....more
Such cute pictures, but such a strange story and such a strange writing style. I made it halfway through, but I couldn't make up my mind who the origiSuch cute pictures, but such a strange story and such a strange writing style. I made it halfway through, but I couldn't make up my mind who the original target group for this story about two forgotten, overly morbid, plushy toys' road-trip to their owner of a rather long, long gone past might be. I cannot imagine a single child I wouldn't be reluctant to hand it over to. And yet, it had been nominated for the "German Youth Literature Prize" in 1997. Such a strange, strange notion....more
Meanwhile I'd spent the whole week fighting the flutter in my stomach that started when he sat next to me in sociology class. I've just read the sneakMeanwhile I'd spent the whole week fighting the flutter in my stomach that started when he sat next to me in sociology class. I've just read the sneak chapters (21 pages only), which is a thing I rarely do, but I had a strangely uneasy feeling concerning the question whether the book and I would fit.
Well, we don't. Right in chapter one the reader is forced to meet that insanely attractive, new, mysterious guy who occupies the heroine's every thought - in spite of her plans to stay attachment-free because of her mother's - who is one of those mostly absent and selfish mothers the YA reader is supposed to hate with passion - habit of spontaneously calling the movers for a van because of her job in the military and in spite of some obvious weird tendencies of Mr. Tattooed-Forearm, like dropping pictures of prickly heroine Avery he shouldn't have in the theater room or speaking about her as being of first level priority to someone on his cell.
I guess the real posh Cinderella-of-a-powerful-family-setting is going to be bomb-dropped on the reader around prom-time, meaning the please-stay-in-because-I-tell-you-to-evening that should start on page 22, but I already know enough to do a brisk U-turn: Unlikable main and side-characters, a strong focus on bad-boy-romance with a second extra-mean, but well-dressed jerk peeking or leering around the corner, an unconvincing writing style and a strong vibe of business-as-usual-YA....more
I had sampled the first 25 pages in March and I still was not really sure whether I'd like to read Mim's roadtrip-to-Cleveland story or not. Some elemI had sampled the first 25 pages in March and I still was not really sure whether I'd like to read Mim's roadtrip-to-Cleveland story or not. Some elements were kind of huh?-wacky. But some parts were beautifully phrased. Six weeks later the impressions the chapters had made on me faded and faded and faded ... Not the slightest curiosity remained. I can safely say: I do not need to read it. I won't miss anything life-changing....more
I stopped reading around the 20% mark. Don't bother, Nomes, really . Sometimes I do wonder what publishers are thinking, when they decide to acquire a I stopped reading around the 20% mark. Don't bother, Nomes, really . Sometimes I do wonder what publishers are thinking, when they decide to acquire a manuscript that finally results in a book like 'Breakfast Served Anytime'.
- Four certified brainiac kids visiting a dinner and ordering breakfast, but only one of them has thought of bringing a wallet. - Brainy, I-am-not-so-young-anymore-that-you-would-catch-me-eating-fudgecicles heroine planning to not accept a perfectly good university scholarship, because she wants to experience New York preferably in form of a steep acting career alongside her ballet dancing BFF - without realising the financial strain her preference would place on her single father. - Childish wanna-become-actress choosing a mysterious course about the importance of the written word at the Kentucky gifted-kids resort instead of pursuing something that would add some substance to her daydreaming. - Genius girl hating a hat-wearing boy on first sight just because he had the nerve to grin and bow. - Ehhh ...
Letting the readers watch a character grow up in front of their eyes doesn't mean the character has to be a silly-beyond-her-peers, rhino-skinned, dense and altogether unlikable member of her species first. We readers also notice the fine differences. We are tuned to supple signs and tiny, realistic changes that mean so much. No need to hammer it home by blowing everything out of proportion....more
*** Abandoned around 48%. *** He held himself like someone who'd spent his life in the military. And she knew what military men liked. “I didn't know y*** Abandoned around 48%. *** He held himself like someone who'd spent his life in the military. And she knew what military men liked. “I didn't know you were expecting me.” Renna used her best seductive voice. [...] Men were always so easy to read. [...] Gods, she hated working with other women. They were always so catty and competitive. Always so ready to stab you in the back if it meant getting ahead.
Sometimes I enjoy switching on my Kindle to buy a random, but recommended title on a complete whim. That's why I try to keep my paper TBR pile rather low. Having to sweep my eyes guiltily across a mountain of brand-new paperbacks when snuggling up with a spontaneous purchase kills half of the carefree fun. Futuristically flavored spaceship stuff has always held an inexplicably strong appeal for me, and a bit of boy-girl-electricity - if not overbearing - added to the mix is almost always appreciated. Therefore the enthusiastic review of Emily May, whose opinions I value highly, reeled me unto Amazon's shores with a juicy snap.
I eagerly started reading and found out quickly, that the world-building is unspectacular, but alright. Beam me up Scotty, if the weapons, vehicles and alien anatomies do not sound boringly startrekky: 'Heliolights', 'gamma particle stabilizers', 'nanotech spanners', 'radiowings', 'sonic screwdrivers' and 'magnacrafts'. Uhuh. That's cool sounding stuff, but it merely adds a thin sci-fi sheen to a more or less familiar high-class-thief setting. The setting is not the only thing that feels painted-on: “The smell of raw silk from his dark uniform making her take a step back. [...] The smell of starfuel, machinery, and space filled her lungs.”
I admit, I understand where Emily May's relieved gushing concerning the heroine's unrestrained use of her own body, her feeling at home in her physical shell, and her making the most of her feminine effect on guys comes from. All that usual focus on naive, timid and pure virgins in the need to be conquered, taught and saved grates on one's nerves pretty quickly. But I do not enjoy this 'liberated' shot at gender stereotyping more: All men are simple and quickly relieved of their innermost secrets, when a waterfall of thick and shiny hair (I cannot stand one single flick of the heroine's glorious ponytail more), a carefully window-dressed pair of boobs or a sultry voice is used to prod their explosive libido into action. In addition, men are always quickly hurt in their pride, being male equals being unconcerned about hygiene or the lack thereof in one's abode, and it means being able to differentiate work from private relationships. The crew of the 'November' consists only of men in order to do a kidnapping job properly without staff members being swayed by guilt or compassion for a victim young enough to be their kid. Naturally, their women-free vessel stinks and is in disarray, Renna notes with haughty disdain. On the other hand she does not like to work with other women, because they are all "catty and competitive" (compare quote on top).
"Sleeping with the chief engineer of the V’Mani Electrical Company had been one of her better decisions." / "With a sigh Renna followed Viktis from the ship. Good thing she’d washed her sexy underwear." I do not judge Renna for exchanging sexual favors for crucial information or access to her targets' inner sancti and I congratulate her for being able to feel pleasure even when encountering a stranger's naked body is mainly part of her business strategy, but I resent her conviction that because of male simplicity physical seduction is a foolproof method (Luckily at least MYTH leader Dallas seems to be unimpressed, which makes her saloon girl antics look rather silly and pitiful) and that she needs to employ it to keep that final edge, which others in her line of work do not have enough spunk or guts or sexiness to allow themselves to gain. Also I do not get why she is so angry about being called a whore. Her sexuality is a commodity she is quick to barter with. Women in the Star Thief universe do not maintain their shape to feel good but to get their way. To use a second example, Mary, the 'Athena's' on-board cook had been a mercenary in her youth, too, but after her husband's death and her switch from thief to kitchen staff she has allowed her body to go overweight and matronly - apparently she has no use for feminine weaponry anymore.
Even as the genre is concerned I differ with Emily and the majority of readers shelving the book. Renna is only 23 years old, but if plot wasn't relying so heavily on her body as a currency and a means to trick men to part with their brains and their secrets, she could as well be 50. She is very, very experienced and sought after in her profession, she knows the other players in her field and she speaks of immediate retirement plans more than just once. Therefore I would never label her story as New Adult fiction. I consider 'The Star Thief' as a standard example of romance-tinged scifi told from a female point of view. Most female romance heroines are in their twenties - whether they populate chicklit, historical bodice-busters or paranormal romance. New Adult to me means first job (uni time counts as well), first live-in partner or flat-mate, first attempts at being an independent adult. (Still, notwithstanding Renna's abundant experience and professionality she is trusting enough to let a very shady scientist with a murky agenda tamper with her broken brain implant. What if he installed a bomb, a tracker, something that makes her sense impulses which aren't real? Apparently even the best can be mightily stupid.)
I have not mentioned the love interest yet, which is probably unforgivable in a scifi romance review. Well, I have to say that after reading almost half of the book I have not learned much about the icy-eyed, well-muscled Hunter/Finn. It is obvious from the first encounter that apart from sexual tension there is a huge misunderstanding wedged between the former gang mates concerning who betrayed whom. And when that is cleared away, which is just a matter of time, everything will be peachy and the lacy underwear and the flexible, bulletproof spiderman-nano-schmano-suits will be ripped off under an ultra-violet dry-shower or in a starfuel tank.
'The Star Thief' has ‘self-published material’ written all over it. It shows a desperate need to be cleansed of annoying repetitions and ballast and turning-arounds-in-circles: Twice Renna is ultra-angry and shocked about the revelation that the rescue mission at the beginning had been just a test to assess her abilities. (”You mean you used this kid as a frakking test for me?” she snarled. / ”Was Myka's rescue a test?” Dallas nodded.) and I haven’t really counted how often she blathers about “a girl” and her need of "morals": A girl had to have her morals, but that line was getting further and further away the more he touched her. / But a girl had to have her principles, and slavery didn't fit into her moral code. / A girl had to have her morals, but where should she draw the line? *Sigh*. A girl has to have some stamina, but, I, personally, drew the line at 48% percent.
A less important side remark: I always thought that self-publishing meant being in charge of many things a traditional publisher otherwise decides without consulting you. Therefore I am very irritated that the cover girl looks so porcelain-dollish in spite of the heroine being in the possession of coffee-colored complexion.
Obviously, Renna and her adventures were not for me. But I am sure there are still some spaceship romps out that that do match my taste. Titles I loved were 'Startide Rising' by David Brin and 'Song of Scarabaeus' by Sara Creasy (both in the adult section). Can you recommend similar titles to me? I am curious about 'On Basilisk Station' by David Weber, ‘Perdition’ by Ann Aguirre and 'The Apollo Academy' by Kimberly P. Chase – although the latter is probably pretty chicklitty. ...more