Contemporary romance is not a genre I’m very familiar with. I deeply enjoyed “The Diary of Bridget Jones”, but that was because I can identify with Br...moreContemporary romance is not a genre I’m very familiar with. I deeply enjoyed “The Diary of Bridget Jones”, but that was because I can identify with Bridget’s fear of dying alone, eaten by German shepherds or, in my case, very hungry English bulldogs. “Tangled Up In You”, on the other hand, doesn’t present such a bleak prospect for its protagonist. Maddie Jones (or Dupree, her pen name) is a true crime writer with a love for bath products and body butters. She moves to a town called Truly to write a book about the circumstances surrounding her mother’s death. She’s a tough and successful woman who interviews dangerous criminals for a living and is used to being on her own. Things, however, don’t go exactly as planned and she ends up falling for Mick, the son of the woman who shot Maddie’s mother.
As I said before, contemporary romance is not my first choice when it comes to finding new books to read. There are times, however, when you’re in need for something light and entertaining that doesn’t force you to think very hard, and “Tangled Up In You” did a great job fitting those requirements. This is pure, hot and steamy romance all the way through, beginning with the well-known instant attraction between incredibly good looking people, and the mandatory sex scenes that made me look back every few seconds in fear of my mom coming up behind me and thinking that I was reading porn.
The one thing that bothered me was the way that the plot, (the murder investigation) disappears in the middle. I was expecting some big reveal, a reason for me to care at all about the reasons that drove Maddie to that little town, but Gibson throws everything to the back of the closet to make space for the sex scenes that justify the “romance” tag on the cover. I was waiting for Maddie to be in a situation that called for her to put on her brass knuckles and SHOW US that she’s no scared little bunny in need of protection, but it never happened. Don’t get me wrong, even at her worst she doesn’t come off as greedy or shallow (well… except when she’s talking about food and all the reasons why she doesn’t allow herself to eat sugar), but the whole “my mother was murdered by a crazy woman” led me to believe that she was going to face a similar situation.
And what about the other characters? Meg had a lot of potential, but Gibson's way of dealing with her felt cheap and lazy. The rest are a bunch of stereotypes I couldn't care less about; I read this story less than an hour ago and I already don’t remember any of their names. Is this the rule for contemporary romance?????? Oh well. At least it got my mind off the Third Reich foreign policies, and that’s saying much given all the time I’ve spent this week reading and watching documentaries about it. (less)
I came across this collection while looking for “Southern Gods” on Amazon. At 99 cents it didn’t look as if I had anything to lose by giving it a try...moreI came across this collection while looking for “Southern Gods” on Amazon. At 99 cents it didn’t look as if I had anything to lose by giving it a try and what would you know? That little investment turned into a couple of hours well spent. The stories in “Fierce as the Grave” are short, twisted, and greatly increased my desire to read some of Hornor’s longer work.
“Verrata”, the first tale, takes place in futuristic New Orleans that is far from being ideal. Hornor takes ghosts to the next level here, and introduces lots of elements that were confusing at first but made “Verrata” memorable in the end.
“Heaven of Animals” is a mix between zombies and the Wild West. It was my least favorite, perhaps because I needed a few more pages to really feel something for the characters. If you happen to like zombies, however, this one is definitely for you.
“Bone China” is the story of two women, a birthday celebration and a family reunion. It’s by far my favorite tale from this book; it’s set in the South and the atmosphere really shines through the text, which just makes it all that much creepier.
In “Sneaking in” a small town kid learns that every action has a consequence. This tale marks the end of the collection and it left me wanting more, which I guess was Hornor’s intent from the beginning. The creepiness here, to me, lies not in the supernatural element, but in the protagonist’s system of beliefs, that justifies abuse as long as you can get away with it.
Overall, “Fierce as the Grave” is one solid collection, and if you have the time to spare, a great read. (less)
I’ve read on many reviews that “Preludes and Nocturnes” is the weakest volume of “The Sandman”. After reading it I can only hope they’re right, becaus...moreI’ve read on many reviews that “Preludes and Nocturnes” is the weakest volume of “The Sandman”. After reading it I can only hope they’re right, because I loved this installment and have high expectation for the rest of series.
In “Preludes and Nocturnes” Morpheus, Lord of Dreams, falls into a trap designed for his older sister Death and is imprisoned for 70 years. When he is finally able to escape and return to his kingdom, Morpheus discovers that his tools have been stolen, and that the dream world has fallen into ruin. The rest of the volume shows us how he tries to locate his tools and recuperate his power.
The plot in this volume is very linear, but I have no problem with that. And the art is deliberately messy, which I thought fitted the storyline very well. I love how Morpheus (or Dream) is drawn: Thin and pale, like an empty canvas for our prettiest dreams and worst nightmares.
Another thing I liked was the incorporation of mythological creatures (the Fates) and even biblical characters (like Cain and Abel), in the plot. I’m really fond of mythology and it was a pleasant surprise to see some of it here. I’m also a big fan of the Justice League (especially of Batman), so it was great to see the Scarecrow and Dr. Destiny. And speaking of Dr. Destiny, his involvement in the story was what I enjoyed the most. The ruby quest was creepy as hell and it gave us a taste of the power dreams can have in our world.
The other two quest were a bit of a disappointment though, and the reason why I’m not giving “Preludes and Nocturnes” 5 stars. I expected more of a challenge given the weak state of Dream, but instead they felt like a breeze. I'm not saying that they're terrible; Hell was particularly interesting with the triumvirate and the tension between demons and Dream, but it didn’t feel as if at any point the safety and wellbeing of Morpheus were being seriously threatened in them.
Oh! before I forget!!!!!!! I really liked the last part, “The Sound of Her Wings”. I’m used to seeing Death portrayed as a terrifying creature, but this version of Dream’s older sister was great. I’m looking forward to learning more about her.
So anyway. If you happen to like comics and graphic novels and haven’t given this series a try, please do. I guarantee that it’s much better that whatever is on TV right now. (less)