I've had friends jokingly tell me that I rate EVERYTHING a 3. I find, so often, that books that are super popular and everyone is screaming about areI've had friends jokingly tell me that I rate EVERYTHING a 3. I find, so often, that books that are super popular and everyone is screaming about are just kinda okay for me. It makes me wonder if maybe I'm too picky or if I'm missing something, some connection, that everyone else is getting. But then I pick up a book like I Hunt Killers and it reminds me of why I reserve those 5 star ratings. Books like this remind me of why I love reading so much.
I absolutely lost myself in this story from the very beginning. I was immersed, riveted, completely out of commission for anything outside of finishing this book, which I did in just a day. Jasper Dent was one of the most fascinating characters I've read recently. Raised to be a serial killer by his serial killer father, Jasper now analyzes his every thought, his every action, trying to determine if he will follow in his father's footsteps, if he too is a sociopath. To be raised like that would undeniably cause irreparable damage to a child, and Jasper is no exception. Luckily, the detective that caught his father has kind of become a mentor to Jasper. When another serial killer seems to be operating in his small town, Jas is forced to confront those feelings and explore that darker side of himself.
While the story within I Hunt Killers was intriguing, it was the characters and the relationship between them that grabbed me and held me and makes me want to read more. From Jas' crazy grandmother, to his sick twisted father, to the gruff detective who feels sorry for Jas, each character has dimension and allure that pulls a reader further into this dark and often quite scary story. I can't wait to read the next book in this series. I would absolutely recommend this to everyone who enjoys dramatic thrillers and fans of shows like Criminal Minds. ...more
The Forest of Hands and Teeth is reminiscent of the movie The Village, a group of people are living in a small isolated village surrounded by a high fThe Forest of Hands and Teeth is reminiscent of the movie The Village, a group of people are living in a small isolated village surrounded by a high fence which separates them from the undead, or as the book calls them, the unconsecrated. The main character, Mary, is out doing her daily chores as the zombies claw at the fence trying desperately to get inside, when suddenly the sirens blare signalling an emergency, possibly a breach. This emergency begins a series of events which dramatically alter Mary and the rest of the villager's day to day existence.
While the villagers look to the Sister's to answer their questions and explain god's will, the Sister's may be hiding some secrets that could endanger their very existence. Meanwhile, Mary's main concern is that the brother that she is crushing on has chosen her best friend to marry and she might be stuck with the other brother instead.
I listened to this as an audiobook and I would not recommend it to anyone considering reading this. You should either read it in print or ebook format. The narrator was very lifeless and monotone and frequently used odd pronunciation and inflections. She also, for some unknown reason, used a spanish-like accent for some of the characters which just didn't fit in a story where the characters had all lived in the same isolated village for generations. I felt like either ALL of the characters should have an accent, or NONE of the characters should have an accent.
I have such a mixed opinion about The Forest of Hands and Teeth. I really enjoyed the story but found Mary, the main character, to be absolutely insufferable. I would say that she is one of the most well written godawful characters I've ever read. I don't know that I've ever read a more frustratingly selfish main character. I can't even call her a "heroine" because all she really manages to do is put people in a lot of really bad situations. Apparently, throughout Mary's life her mother had told her stories about life before the zombies and many stories in particular about the ocean. So now Mary's only obsession, other than which brother she loves that day, is making her way to the ocean regardless of who she puts in danger to do it, even though she's not completely sure if it even exists.
I actually found most of the players to be rather 2 dimensional and spiritless and I spent most of my time hoping one of them would be eaten by a zombie. Mary's brother was the only one who showed a bit of personality sometimes, unfortunately it wasn't exactly a winning personality. He was actually quite an asshat. Mary's love interests, the two brothers, were equally insufferable as they constantly made long winded angst filled declarations of their devotion to Mary who couldn't make up her mind which one she loved. I was hoping zombies would eat them too.
"He's so tender, so eager to make me happy in ways that no one else has. Tears start to crowd in my eyes and my body begins to respond to this man as if it were his brother whispering into my ear. As if my body can't tell the difference between the two, between their whispers and the feel of their breath on my flesh."
Sounds like a lovely girl, right?
On the other hand, the writing and world building was wonderful and the flow of the plot was evenly paced and enjoyable. I honestly don't understand how I liked a book so much when I didn't like any of the people in it. Some of the instances when the villagers were going about their day to day existence and the author would describe the scene with zombies just feet away literally breaking their fingers off in the fence trying to get in and a constant cacophony of undead moans was the background noise to the point that only its absence was notable. This world was so creepy and written in such a matter of fact way that I could really feel the hopelessness of this kind of existence. This book definitely left me with some haunting images of what unthinkable things could happen in such a world.
I don't know if I'm going to continue to the next book. As much as I loved the writing and story, the ending left me hating the main character even more than I had through the story and I really don't care what happens to her unless it includes being eaten by a zombie....more
God's Eye introduces us to Katherine Geryon, a woman who has lived what some would call an easy life. Growing up in an affluent family with a controllGod's Eye introduces us to Katherine Geryon, a woman who has lived what some would call an easy life. Growing up in an affluent family with a controlling and emotionally absent father and a mother who taught her that appearances are everything, Katherine simply floated through life, turning a blind eye to what she did not want to see and letting all of her decisions be made by others. Working in her father's company, she was viewed with envy and distrust by most people and she never put forth the effort to make any real connections or to cause people to view her as anything more than she appeared. When two gorgeous and charismatic men suddenly appeared in her life during the same time that unexplained phenomenon began happening in her home, suddenly she had no choice than to open her eyes and notice the things happening around her. Finding herself in an emotionally charged sexual relationship with both of them, Katherine knew that eventually she would have to choose, and she was slowly starting to become aware of what making the wrong choice might cost her.
It's difficult to put my finger on the genre that God's Eye would fit into because there are elements of so many. I would call it a Paranormal Psychological Fantasy Thriller with elements of steamy romance. The plot wound slowly around these characters, building suspense and tension as I tried to figure out which was angel and which was demon and which would Katherine choose in the end.
Ultimately, God's Eye was about the far-reaching results of the choices that we make every day. It's important that each person is aware that our decisions can have consequences outside of ourselves and that when we make a choice that affects others we have to acknowledge and own it. Only with awareness and accountability can we begin to change the way we think and act. When we begin to open our eyes, our mind, and our heart, we can begin to change both our own world as well as have a positive effect on the world at large, even in small ways. Katherine's choice seemed to be between Angel and Demon, good or evil, but as shown in the book, sometimes its hard to determine which is which. Katherine had to look at the ripple effect of what first appeared to be small, unimportant choices but even when her eyes began to see, she was still unsure which was the right path for her to take.
I want to take a minute to mention that Alistair and Zachary will probably appeal to those who love Paranormal Romance. This one does not lack in the "steamy love scenes with hot supernatural guys" department. I was immediately drawn to Alistair because it seemed that his character had more depth than Zachary, but I'm sure others will find Zachary's alpha-ness highly attractive.
Overall, God's Eye is a book I think many people will enjoy. Once you get past the frighteningly awesome cover, you'll see that this story goes much deeper than your average angel/demon paranormal romance. And the image on the cover will make sense in the context of the story. I would recommend God's Eye to anyone who enjoys paranormal romance, horror, or psychological thrillers. The eBook is just $.99 at Amazon right now, I definitely suggest grabbing it while you can get it at this price! ...more
I love those books that keep me engaged so fully in the story that I can lose myself between the pages for hours and not even realize how much time h I love those books that keep me engaged so fully in the story that I can lose myself between the pages for hours and not even realize how much time has passed. That's exactly what I found with Speed Dating with the Dead. I was alternately terrified and captivated by this story. Now, this wasn't exactly what I was expecting based on the title. I was thinking it would be a humorous paranormal romantic thriller. Boy was I wrong! This book reminded me of a combination of that movie 1408 and an episode of one of those ghost hunter shows. But scarier, much scarier! Alcoholic widower and well known ghost hunter Digger Wilson sets up a ghost hunting conference at one of the reputedly most haunted Inns. The White Horse Inn has special significance to Digger, since he and his wife made a pact long ago to meet here if one dies before the other. He's hoping he's able to find his wife's spirit there, but he ends up finding more than he expected. Along with his team of specialists, Digger brings along his artistic daughter, Kendra, who resents him and only wants to lose herself in the fictional world she creates on the canvas. While the plot was fairly evenly paced, there were many unexpected twists along the way. Don't get me wrong, there was a fair share of action, but the story unfolded little by little, which increased my sense of dread and anticipation.
I felt that the characters were one of the main strengths of this book. Each character was believable and all too human with very human failings. Each one was presented in such a way that I wanted to know more about them. Whether I liked them or hated them, I was interested to know what they would say or do next. One of the standout's for me was known as "The Roach", although I wasn't fond of his unfortunate moniker, I felt he was one of the most perplexing yet intriguing characters in the book. I was kept guessing at his true motivations. I also really enjoyed Kendra and her teenage antics to attract the attention of crush Cody aka The Future of Horror. I thought that their flirtation was immensely believable. All of Nicholson's characters were true to life and I found the dialog to be engaging and entertaining. The paranormal aspects were chillingly realistic as well. From ghosts, to demons, to creepy kids that seemed to show up at random, all were extremely goosebumpworthy.
I would compare Nicholson's writing style to Koontz's early stuff. I was really impressed with how effortlessly this story grabbed me and took me on a paranormal journey into some places I'm not so sure I want to revisit. I certainly won't be journeying into any basements any time soon. This is definitely a "lights on all night" kind of book and one that will keep you up late reading. I highly recommend for those who like to read about things that go bump in the night.
From the fabulous cover that draws the eye and the imagination, to the extraordinary plot that is both chilling and compelling, Anna Dressed in BloodFrom the fabulous cover that draws the eye and the imagination, to the extraordinary plot that is both chilling and compelling, Anna Dressed in Blood is so full of "Win” that it is no surprise this is the book that everyone is talking about. Billed as Young Adult fiction, I believe this book will appeal to everyone, regardless of genre. Anna Dressed in Blood has all the elements of an incredible ghost story; a creepy haunted house, a violent spirit with a tragic past, and a solitary hero intent on dispatching the dead to where ever it is the dead go. If that would have been all there was to the story, it probably would have been a great book. However, Kendare Blake takes this familiar plot and twists it into something brilliant and original and definitely not just a ghost story. She adds magic, witches, voodoo myth and ritual, enough death, blood, and violence to satisfy any horror fan, and then tops it off with touch of romance. On top of this, the writing is hauntingly beautiful and keeps the reader wanting more. This is a book that can be re-read again and again, and each time the reader can find something new to love about it.
Cas is the main character, but it is Anna who really draws me into the story at the beginning. She is both terrifying and alluring, capable of unimaginable violence but has this air of mystery that makes me want to understand her, figure out what happened to her to cause this much rage. Anna’s house was almost a character in itself. Dark, spooky, and mysterious, the house seems to want to draw you closer. It seemed like the house was an extension of Anna herself, eerily compelling. I wanted to explore the house, even knowing the terrible thing that’s in there. Even knowing what she's capable of. Cas’ first encounter with Anna is the stuff of nightmares, wounded and unprepared, he finds himself in the path of a monstrous goddess like vision, black veins criss crossing her skin, eyes that are black pools, the blood soaked dress, not to mention she has been dismembering people with her bare hands for over fifty years. But for some reason she lets him live. Cas quickly learns that he is no match for Anna physically, she throws him around like a rag doll leaving him bruised and battered and even more intrigued by her. Suddenly, the job he came there to do doesn’t seem quite so easy.
Cas ends up being a lot deeper than he seems from first impression. His caustic wit, the way he refuses any offer of help, and how he admittedly uses people to gain information may make Cas look like a pretty shallow fellow. In actuality, he has deep seated reasons pushing people away, never allowing anyone close enough to form any type of friendship. All of this changes though when he arrives in Anna’s town. Suddenly he’s faced with a ghost he can’t kill, people who have the nerve to call themselves his friends, and a cat that won’t stop hissing at him. I enjoyed watching him grow as a character throughout the story. As his relationship with Anna builds, it seems that he’s also opening himself up to friendships with living people as well. The secondary characters were also fascinating and each one brought a little something unexpected to the story.
The plot is fast paced and exciting. Not a moment went by that I wasn’t completely engaged in the story. Anna Dressed in Blood is a book that will grab you and refuse to let go, forcing you to continue reading even when you want to put the book down and cover your eyes. The author has this way of building the suspense so that I could almost feel myself tense as I waited to see what was going to happen. Throughout the book, I gasped, I laughed out loud, I teared up once or twice, I was thoroughly chilled, thrilled, and entertained. The twists and turns in the plot were amazing. The second half of the book read almost like a completely separate story, but equally as fascinating. I loved the elements of voodoo, I would have enjoyed learning more about that. There was a lot of different things going on but I never once felt like it was too much, each new plot thread just added to the richness of the story.
Ultimately, I think Anna Dressed in Blood is probably the best Young Adult novel this year and will certainly be on my list of all time favorite reads. I don’t know what Kendare Blake is going to come up with to top this phenomenal debut, but I have no doubt that she will. Did you happen to see the interview she did at Down the Rabbit Hole where she answered every question with quotes from the book? How awesome is that? I predict that we’ll see some amazing things from this author, remember I said so. If you haven’t already gotten yourself a copy of this book, you should definitely do so. This isn’t one that you want to miss out on. I would recommend this to everyone.
This is Peter Pan like I have never imagined it. The Child Thief is one of the most disturbing, violent, and frightening fairy tale re-imaginings I'veThis is Peter Pan like I have never imagined it. The Child Thief is one of the most disturbing, violent, and frightening fairy tale re-imaginings I've ever read. It reminds me of the more grim versions of "Grimm's Fairy Tales" That being said, I was absolutely enthralled, I couldn't put it down. There were some times when I had to walk away from it for a bit, but I'm a bit squeamish when it comes to even a hint of gore. There were also some situations that were uncomfortable to read about such as child abuse, torture, and molestation. However, these things do happen and the way they were used in the story was fitting.
Peter finds his "lost boys" among the forgotten children, the runaways, the abused and neglected. He offers them a chance at a different kind of life in a magical world where they never have to grow up and each day is a new adventure. He does warn them that there are also monsters. With his golden eyes and infectious smile, Peter finds it easy to win over these mistreated kids and he creates his own clan in mist shrouded Avalon, his refuge from the cruelties he, himself, experienced in the human world.
Brom paints a vivid world of dying beauty and frightening violence. I love the images he creates of the fairies, pixies, elves, and even the more dangerous creatures that lurk in the swamps. One thing that this author has done incredibly well is blur the line between good and evil. I found myself, several times, feeling sympathy for a character I hated just a couple pages before.
Ultimately I feel that this is a extraordinary story, one that fans of dark fantasy will certainly want on their shelves. The characters, the world, the plot were all written so flawlessly that I easily lost myself in the pages. I would highly recommend The Child Thief and want to thank the person who recommended it to me. ...more