Normally I wouldn't follow a book review with a review of the next book in the series since variety is the spice of life but the The Parasol ProtectorNormally I wouldn't follow a book review with a review of the next book in the series since variety is the spice of life but the The Parasol Protectorate Series is an exception to this blunder. I have been waiting on baited breath to read the third installment, Blameless, to the point that I would stop at every bookstore I passed to see if they had the book for sale when I heard a rumor from Gail herself that the book was available early in Texas. I finally found it at a Barnes & Noble, which was the last place I expected since when I had heard the same rumor about Changeless, they told me that in no way would they place a book on the self before the publisher's release date. Funny how that works out for me sometimes. So I have the book in my possession and what happens? I get so slammed between work and school that it takes me close to 3 weeks to read it. Not my style or to my liking. I finally finished it last night and all I can say is wow!
As previously stated in the Changeless review, Gail Carriger has created a world set in Victorian England which includes Vampires, Werewolves, and Ghosts, oh my! In this installment, Lady Alexia Maccon finds herself in a delicate condition while it is widely known that her husband, a werewolf of considerable age, could not possibly father children. The whole idea is absurd according to all desirable social circles. Poor Alexia is rejected by her husband and the pack, asked to leave not so nicely from her mother's home, and discovers the one person she thought she could always count on, the vampire rogue Lord Akeldama, has up and disappeared. What is a somewhat well bred lady to do? Go to Italy, the land of coffee and pesto, of course!
Blameless continues Carriger's tradition of the perfect amount of action, controversy, and good ole British humor. The characters each handle the disastrous scandal of unknown paternity in the exact way you would imagine. Alexia decides to travel, Lord Maccon gets drunk even though that should be impossible, and Floote decides it would be an excellent time to carry two petite single shot handguns. All the characters you have grown to love or tolerate, the case may be, make cameos through out the story including Ivy and the wicked half-sisters. The story is well written and slightly complex just like the previous novels in the series. There is also excellent character development while you watch Alexia wrap her head around a pregnancy that should never have come to be. By far, my favorite aspect of the book is the use of language. A wonderful aspect of historical novels is the opportunity to hear a familiar language used in a way that seems foreign. Carriger does the magnificently. At some points I had to stop, re-read the section in question, and laugh hysterically at the ingenious phrasing. Most enjoyable is the name Infant-Inconvenience for the baby who has stirred up a whole lot of trouble in London.
I would recommend this series to anyone who enjoys British humor wrapped in a fun, intellectual story. The saddest thing I can think of right now is the fact that I have to wait until July 2011 to read more on the antics of Lord and Lady Maccon and their friends. Excellent work Ms. Carriger! I give Blameless and the series as a whole 5 out of 5 Stars. ...more
Reading this book was chosen for me by the wonderful ladies of http://girlsinthestacks.com/. I have joined their book club in the effort to socializeReading this book was chosen for me by the wonderful ladies of http://girlsinthestacks.com/. I have joined their book club in the effort to socialize outside of the computer world. The Girl who Chased the Moon was the first book we were to read as a group. I didn't know much about the book when I opened the cover other then it had a very pretty and inviting cover. I will say that the cover was just the start to joy this book holds.
The Girl who Chased the Moon is a book about a teenager named Emily. Her world has been turned upside down by the death of single parent mother. Emily has been shipped off to live with her grandfather for whom she has never met before. The small southern town where her mother had grown up, was about to reveal secrets Emily could of never imagined.
The book was a charming read. You were dragged into the surroundings of Mullaby, North Carolina and could almost smell the barbecue described as you are reading. The characters were well developed and balance. You cared what was going to happen to them on up and coming pages.
There are two romantic story lines flowing at the same time. The main, about Emily and her relationship with the mayor's son Winn. The second is between Emily's neighbor Julia and a lost love Sawyer. The split in romance time reminds the reader of the difference between Adult and Teenage love and the issues that can arise from both. The lessons of acceptance and forgiveness are also mingled in.
Even though romance was present in the book I would not call it a romance novel. It held a charisma that made the book almost magical. There is a hint or two towards oddities or unexplainable occurrences but did not have the feel of a fantasy or paranormal story. The book was nicely balanced with all of these attributes and makes the reader crave the story for what it is.
Overall I was gleefully shocked at how much I enjoyed The Girl who Chased the Moon. Even though the ending was wrapped up very nicely and could be a stand alone novel with success, I am hoping for a little bit more. I don't want to leave the characters or the environment. It held that southern charm that makes people want to move to small towns, like Mullaby, after you have only been visiting for a few hours. It is a perfect summer read next to the pool or at the beach. I gave The Girl who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen 5 out of 5 Stars!
On a side note, the author was very gracious and sent our book club a number of gifts including two of the recipes mentioned in the book and nameplates personally signed by her. Between her excellent writing and her generosity, I will be picking up her next book without hesitation....more
The series is about a British young lady named Claire Randall who is returning to her life and her husband after serving as a combat nurse in WWII. WhThe series is about a British young lady named Claire Randall who is returning to her life and her husband after serving as a combat nurse in WWII. While on a "second honeymoon" type trip in Scotland to rekindle the love between her and her husband, Claire is mysteriously swept away through a time portal to the year 1743. While trying to find a way home, she learns about the past, human nature, love and in the end, herself.
Outlander would be considered a historical fiction with a twist of romance added in for flavor. It shows modern day readers that those we would consider to be barbarians by the way they live were human the same as we are. Living in a simpler time with out the use of modern technology did not make this society less intelligent or unfeeling. It also opens the readers mind to bigotry and prejudices that surround us today. In the end, we are all human with the same desires and feelings to drive us as people.
This book moved slowly at first to build a world post WWII and then in the past. This may keep readers from letting themselves flow into the story that is unfolding. Once the worlds are established and the characters start showing their personalities, I could not put the book down. The situations the characters find themselves in over and over again seem unbelievable until you remember that the story is taking place during a time when superstition was the basis of many people's actions. Claire, being a modern woman, brings a number of troubling situations upon herself not remembering religion and superstition was the only logic one could follow at this time. Through out the book she learns more about herself and how she wants to live her life and realizes, maybe the simple type of life isn't as scary as she originally imagined.
I have to place a warning for those with a queasy stomach. This book is not for the faint at heart! There is torture, a high amount of sex, possible rape be strangers, and possessive sex that some consider rape between lovers. Most of the negative reviews I have read about this book hinge on these points. I discount some of these as a bad thing when I think about the time period the majority of the story takes place in. In the 18th century, women were possessions. First of their fathers, then of the their husbands. I actually applaud Gabaldon for placing this conflict in the story. This is one reason why I consider this a historical fiction and not a straight romance novel.
Overall, I loved this book and as soon as I finished I wanted to dive into the next installment of the series. The characters grabbed me and drew me in. Especially the main male character, Jaime. He is who the shirt that says, "Boys in books are so much better" was created for. I gave the book 5 out of 5 stars....more
I will admit I bought this book for two reasons. One, the bright cover kept grabbing my attention and two, it seemed like everyone was reading it. I tI will admit I bought this book for two reasons. One, the bright cover kept grabbing my attention and two, it seemed like everyone was reading it. I thought to myself "well it has to be popular for a reason." I should have known better since that is how I became addicted to Harry Potter and Twilight, but another addict no where in my thought process I started reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
This is another book I picked up with even knowing what genre it was. I found out quickly. The main character, Mikael Blomkvist is a financial report with an independent magazine and he has just been dealt a career king verdict of guilty for liable. Instead of taking his co-workers and friends down with him, he decides to take a job offer from a prominent industrialist to write the family biography. The family history includes not only business prowlness, but Nazis, family squabbles and the disappearance of a loved family member. A simple fluff job ends up being a mystery Mikael and his companions will never forget.
I haven't read a mystery novel in many years and I am happy I started back up with this one. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo had me sitting on the edge of my seat, or bed depending on the time I was reading, with every chapter. The events that unfolded through out the novel had me saying out loud, "Your kidding right?" The characters were strong at some points and fragile in others. They were well rounded and the words portrayed their emotions expertly. At no point did I feel a character was just plain unrealistic and with some of the situations they came across I think this is the greatest achievement of the novel.
I will warn you that there are a few sensitive subjects of the sexual nature in the book. I can not go any deeper into this without giving away plot points but if you have a sensitive stomach towards forceful sex or rape, this is not the book for you.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the first in the Millennium Trilogy and it is safe to say I will be reading the next. Even though this piece was wrapped up very well, especially with how many side plots were floating around, I have a yearning to find out what happens next for the characters, especially the female lead. I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars....more
A little background on the series with as few spoilers as possible. Faythe Sanders is your typical Texas girl. She loves her family, especially her faA little background on the series with as few spoilers as possible. Faythe Sanders is your typical Texas girl. She loves her family, especially her father, but she struggles with how how much they control her. She goes away to college instead of marrying her High School sweetheart and starting life on the ranch owned by her family. The one difference between her and any other twenty something across the country is the fact that Faythe is a Shifter. A werecat to be precise. In her tightly controlled society the only thing she is expected to do is marry a strong werecat and make babies. Female werecats are so rare, for the sake of her species, it is her duty in the mind of some to keep trying until she has the much sought after baby girl. Faythe decides to be more then a baby maker and revolts and in the process makes many powerful enemies within her world.
Poor Faythe has had a hard nine months (the length of the series). Not only does it seem that everyone is trying to either imprison or kill her but she has lost those that she loves in the process of fighting back. Not only are her enemies trying to subdue or kill her but it seems they are content with bring down her family in the process. On top of all that, Faythe has made some really stupid decisions throughout the entire ordeal which has turned her life even more upside down then it already was. On the brink of war with her own kind, will Faythe have the control and knowledge needed to save everything she considers special in her life? No matter what you know this fiery feline will not go down without throwing her claws around.
Rachel Vincent has created a world of powerful characters. With every turn of a page, you feel the emotions they are going through. I will not lie and say I did not shed a tear or two while reading Alpha. I cried a bloody river! The sadness, pain, and fear of what is going on around these characters is so well expressed that you would have to be an android not to feel it as you read. You want the good guys to win and you want the bad guys to feel more pain then they have ever had to deal with in their pathetic lives. This is not a fairy tale where the immature main character makes a few mistakes and then lives happily ever after. This story is full of sorrow that changes the characters down to their little fictional souls. At no point in the book does the reader get the feeling that the good guys are going to win. You are just wishing and praying they will get out of the mess in one piece.
The relationships that are developed between certain characters is another amazing feet. There isn't just one knight in shining armor and the stain between the triangle that has been developing over many books as reached a boiling point. There is Mark, her first love and the foundation of her strength. He would go to the moon and back for her, and pretty much has since she left him at the alter before disappearing to college hours away. Then there is Jace. The guy who has always been in the family as her brother's best friend but she has only recently realized that she had more then brotherly feelings towards him. Both characters make you want her to choose them but there is a strong possibility that the boys will kill each other before she ever makes up her mind.
I know I haven't hidden the fact that I am a huge fan of Vincent's writing, but there is a reason for this. When I open one of her books, I am transported into the world she has created and feel as if her characters are real, flaws and all. I am sad that she has closed this chapter in her literary worlds but the way she finalized everything was perfect. Not everyone had the happy ending you may think they deserve but all loose ends were tied up and overall the endings of each part of the story just fit. Sure I wish some characters did not have to go through what they did but these books are developed on realistic human reactions and emotions and had realistic endings even if the characters are based in a Paranormal world. I am more then happy to give Alpha five out of five stars. This series has easily found a place on my re-read shelf. ...more