Alright ladies, I've got a question: say you're at a scummy dance club that your friends all but forced you to go to. You're not having a good time. IAlright ladies, I've got a question: say you're at a scummy dance club that your friends all but forced you to go to. You're not having a good time. In fact, you're pretty miserable and can't wait to go home. As you sit at the bar nursing your Cherry Coke a good-looking guy comes and sits next to you.
That would be nice, right? A good way to pass the time until your friends decide they've had all the man-handling they can take (for the night).
Well, say the hot guy in question turns out to be the village bicycle--"everybody has had ride!"--the infamous man-whore of your school/town. You're disgusted this vile creature is in your immediate vicinity, don't want him around. So you tell him to go away. And he doesn't. He tells you he needs your help because, in his words:
"You, darling, are the Duff. Designated. Ugly. Fat. Friend. No offense, but that would be you. Hey, don't get defensive. It's not like you're an ogre or anything, but in comparison..."
He proceeds to tell you that he's talking to you, the Duff, so your über hot friends will think he's a nice, sensitive guy. He's hoping this will up his chances of getting into their pants.
How would you react to that?
If this happened to the person I am today I'd totally laugh in the a-hole's face and walk away. Because, really, I couldn't care less what a (most likely) STD-infected man-whore thinks of me, regardless of how ridiculously hot he might be. I'm an adult. I stopped caring what other people think of me. All that matters is what I think. (for the record: I'm happy with the way I look). Besides, I'm married.
But if that happened to me fourteen years ago... well, let's just say it would have destroyed--I'm talking completely pulverized--what little self-esteem I had at the time. Back then I was--comparatively speaking--the Duff among my circle of friends. I didn't get attention from guys when I was with my unintentionally hot friends (seriously. And they didn't even know it. They were all long-limbed, willowy, girl-next-door beautiful. I was the average height ethnic girl).
What's my point? My point is I can see why teenage girls would want to read this book. Like I said, I've been there. I get it.
BUT what I fail to appreciate is the way this story plays out.
Bianca Piper, the Duff in question, is a seventeen-year-old girl finishing up her senior year in high school. She has two good friends who really care about her. Parents who, dysfunctional marriage aside, love her. She's intelligent, witty, and successful--for the most part.
Bianca only real major downfall is she is much too cynical, especially when it comes to love, though I can't say I blame her. Bianca was only fourteen when she had her heart stomped on by an upperclassman.
It is her wit and cynicism that comes to her aid the night she's told that she is The Duff. She insults the man-whore, Wesley Rush, and throws her Cherry Coke in his face--**plus twenty points for Bianca, am I right?**--and walks away in a dignity-at-all-times manner.
Unfortunately Bianca doesn't walk away completely unscathed. She is unable to get over the fact that she's the so-called "ugly fat girl" among her friends. It starts eating away at her self-esteem.
And to make matters much worse, her home life begins to crumble.
Instead of dealing with her problems, Bianca masters the art of escapism. Totally understandable. I've been there. But instead of losing herself in a good book, movie or yogalates, she loses herself in the bed of...(wait for it)...Wesley Rush, resident man-whore. The guy she hates with the intensity of a thousand suns.
Oh, it gets better. He lovingly nicknames her 'Duffy'. That's right, as in The Duff. And Bianca has a bevy of insults to hurl at Wesley whenever it pleases her. Neither of them them pretend their relationship is based on anything other then sex. Call it what you will: escapism sex, hate sex, cheap sex, a hook-up, sex buddies, booty call...I could go on. Regardless of the label, this is where the author starts to lose me.
I hope I'm not coming across as 'holier then thou', because, seriously it's not like I was an angel when I was a teenager. I had a wild streak back then, I made mistakes. Lots of them. It's just my mistakes involved less sex. Okay, sex was never involved. Neither was nudity. But I kissed (read: had total make-out sessions with) a bunch of guys. Sometimes with the sole intention of getting my mind off my problems. So really, I understand Bianca's motives. I even understand how in a twisted way she felt pretty, more desirable afterward.
That being said, I can't understand why/how she's able to repeatedly hop into bed with a guy who makes her skin crawl. She's with him as much as five times a week. Not that I'm a sexpert (see what I did there? I combined sex and expert. Hee.) but I'd wager to say that's a lot of sex for a couple of teenagers who are using each other. Especially considering how cheap and dirty Bianca claims to feel afterward.
While reading this novel I was all, "Stop it. Stop having sex with the guy you hate. Just STOP! Go talk to your friends or a counselor. You need help." But clearly, she didn't stop. It wouldn't have been so bad had she felt more guilty or ashamed afterward. And I could understand her need had it been described as some sort of an addiction. Or perhaps the author could have described Bianca's home life much worse, making her incessant need to escape that much more plausible.
But yeah, my point is: I just couldn't relate. Not entirely. And so this story fell apart for me. Okay, that's a lie. It didn't fall apart--the story was still in one piece when I finished this book, but just barely.
The only real redeeming thing about The Duff is the conclusion Bianca comes to near the end of the novel, about what it means to be a Duff. And she realizes how stupid she and Wesley were by having so much sex, regardless of how much protection they used (for the record: condoms and the pill).
And though it pains me to do so, I'll admit that I'm sappy enough to like how this book ended. (Kill me.) It wraps up so neatly with a giant bow on top, Pretty Woman style. Three stars but just barely, and if I were I being totally fair I'd have to give it just two stars (waaaaaaaaay too much swearing going on in this book. It's completely out of control). But I liked this book, despite all it's faults, so yeah, three stars. ...more
When I started this book I was thinking it wasn't for me, that I wouldn't finish it let alone give it five stars. How wrong I was. This is a five starWhen I started this book I was thinking it wasn't for me, that I wouldn't finish it let alone give it five stars. How wrong I was. This is a five star book.
I'm going to start this review off on a tangent--when do I not? As far as I'm concerned 2011 has been the Year of Meh. Television has been practicallyI'm going to start this review off on a tangent--when do I not? As far as I'm concerned 2011 has been the Year of Meh. Television has been practically unwatchable. Movies released this year: heinous. The books were, at best, mediocre. Admittedly, there were a few notable exceptions but, for the most part, I'm disappointed.
Over the past six months I've grown weary; struggled to finish most of what I've started, and, by the way, failing more often then not--you should see my pile of abandoned books. Because of this I've been feeling the need to take a step back, maybe not read so much. Maybe spend my money more wisely--it is ridiculous how much I spend on books and audiobooks. You know, take a break.
2011 killed my love of books (and movies and television).
That said, over the past couple of days I've fallen in love with books (and reading) all over again. I'm in love. Love I tell ya. Can't-get-enough-make-everyone-sick-can't-eat-or-sleep-head-over-heels in love. Me and reading? It's like we're on a second honeymoon. I have Stacia Kane and her Downside Ghost series to thank because of it.
I know, I know--none of the books in the Downside Ghost series were published this year. It doesn't matter. What does matter is I love reading. Again.
Funny thing, it's not like Downside Ghosts is The Best Series, Ever. And it has to be said: it's definitely not for everyone. However, as far as I'm concerned, it is compelling and addictive. It's good.
So. Unholy Ghosts. Where to start? Twenty-five year old Cesaria "Chess" Putnum is a hot mess, and not in that chick-flick cliche can't-get-my-life-together-because-I'm-so-adorably-clumsy-and-I-wear-glasses-that-make-me-look-unfortunate-until-I-finally-remove-them-during-the-makeover-montage-and-that's-when-everyone-discovers-I'm-super-hot sort of way. I mean the sort of hot mess that's boozy and pops pills all the live-long day.
I'm not going to lie to you. I avoided this series for that exact reason. Boozy pill-poppers just aren't my thing, or so I thought.
Then, other day, I was looking through my Kindle bookshelf and I noticed that I had the sample of Unholy Ghosts--for the life of me, I can't remember when I downloaded it. Curious, figuring I had nothing to lose, I decided to give it a chance before I went ahead and removed it. Imagine my surprise when I realized I couldn't go the rest of my life without reading more. So I purchased it (FYI, the Kindle edition of Unholy Ghosts is just 99 cents).
The thing I like about Chess is, well, I pretty much like everything. Honestly, I don't even mind that she's a drug addict. Of course, most of her problems wouldn't happen if she wasn't addicted to pills, but if that were the case Unholy Ghosts wouldn't be so good.
One of my favorite aspects of Chess's life her employment. She works for the Church of Real Truth as a Debunker, a person who goes around trying to debunk claims of hauntings. If she's able to then she gets a bonus and if she isn't, if the haunting is authentic, the homeowner is compensated by the church and the debunker will rid the home of the ghost.
Sidenote: Did I mention this is a dystopian urban fantasy? Because it is. Basically way back in the year 1997 ghosts escaped wherever it is ghosts go (or actually The City, as it's called in this series) and got all murdery, killing one-third of the world's population. At the time The Church of Truth was just a small organization but they succeeded in capturing all the ghosts. 25 years later The Church of Truth is the only religion. They pretty much run the government too. Worldwide.
The church has vowed to keep people safe from ghosts, which is why homeowners are compensated if their haunting is real. /sidenote
Chess is good at being a Debunker and it's something she's proud of. She also loves the Church of Truth, despite the fact that it reigns supreme. I can't fault her for it because everything else in her life is crap--growing up being passed from abusive foster home to abusive foster home will mess you up, you know? And anyway the Church is the only place she's ever felt safe, the only thing that's ever given her life value.
Anyway, things get really interesting when Chess's drug dealer blackmails her into working for him. <--and I'm stopping right there because I don't want to ruin it for you. Plus, this review is entirely too long.
This isn't my favorite book in the series, there are a few things that didn't exactly work for me, but I still like it. (Just so you know Unholy Magic, the second book in the Downside Ghost series is...um...intense. I'll be reviewing it soon). Three stars.
Fun book. Most of my life I've been a novice when it comes to crochet. Scratch that, novice isn't quite right. You see, until this past summer I'd onlFun book. Most of my life I've been a novice when it comes to crochet. Scratch that, novice isn't quite right. You see, until this past summer I'd only ever crocheted potholders. Four times. In my life. Half of which I never finished because I got bored. So is there such a thing as quasi-novice? If so, that's what category I belonged to.
That being said, with the help of this book and Amigurumi Two! I've made some pretty cute stuff for my kids and they actually play with all of it. No, really, they totally do. And they ask me to make more amigurumi animals for them all the time. When I get a few spare hours I can totally finish a project or two since the projects are so simple and the instructions are incredibly easy to understand. I love this book. ...more
This is such a bizarre piece of work, I'm not sure what to make of it. It started out fun, got interesting, then got bizarre, then got really bizarre,This is such a bizarre piece of work, I'm not sure what to make of it. It started out fun, got interesting, then got bizarre, then got really bizarre, and then became a full on crap-fest, theeeen it ended okay. Unfortunately the conclusion was really open-ended. No word on whether or not it will become a series.
Am I still interested in this storyline? Enough to pick up a sequel? The answer to both those questions is no.
I'm teetering between 'I really liked it' and 'it was amazing'. But I'm going ahead and giving it five stars because it made me cry. That in itself isI'm teetering between 'I really liked it' and 'it was amazing'. But I'm going ahead and giving it five stars because it made me cry. That in itself is amazing as I've been accused of being 'dead inside' on more than one occasion.
I'll have to finish my review when I get home, which will be soon since I'm starting back tomorrow, though I have over 1200 miles between me and my destination. But yeah, yay for fun road trips! And yay for fantastic books and the authors who write them!...more
I finished this in the tail-end of October. And you know what? I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Kiersten White knows how to write a fun YA paranormalI finished this in the tail-end of October. And you know what? I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Kiersten White knows how to write a fun YA paranormal novel, which I'd say is a major accomplishment in and of itself, especially these days. But she also managed to make a Marysue incredibly likable. That's right I actually like the Marysue MC. Very much so. And she doesn't even feel like a Marysue, but totally is.
So Kiersten White? Must be a witch, or maybe she sold her soul to the devil, because she's somehow made the impossible possible. I'm willing to admit that, chances are, Kiersten White just knows how to write, unlike most writers of YA paranormal novels these days. I also think she must have a good editor and a publisher that refuses to print the same-old regurgitated garbage. So kudos to them. And I'll be keeping Kiersten White on my radar.
When I saw that one of my favorite goodreaders, Tatiana, gave this book four stars I thought she'd gone insane. I mean, it's a YA book featuring angelWhen I saw that one of my favorite goodreaders, Tatiana, gave this book four stars I thought she'd gone insane. I mean, it's a YA book featuring angels for crying out loud! Surely it can't be good let alone worthy of four whole stars from Tatiana, so clearly she lost her mind. But I purchased the audiobook anyway because it was January 13th and I was anxiously awaiting the release of Shadowfever which was still five days away at the time. Plus it didn't hurt that this audiobook was reasonably priced.
Initially I was a little irritated with Unearthly. It starts out with a dream/vision that the main character has--is it just me or do too many of these books start out the exact same way? But I kept with it because I paid for it, dangit! Fortunately it didn't take too long for my initial irritation to wear off--I'd say no longer then the first few chapters.
For the next several chapters I didn't have much of an opinion. Not that the book was bad, because it wasn't. The writing was fine, good even, but I refused to make an official judgment call. Too many times I've fallen in love with a book only, in the end, to hate it more than poison. I wasn't going to get burned. Nope. Not me. Not again.
Now all is said and done I'm going to go ahead and say Tatiana isn't crazy. This book is good. In fact I'm going to go ahead and give this book four stars because I really like it. Though, in my heart, it will always be a five-star read because it's one of few YA paranormal romances that doesn't make me want to go on a stabbing spree. Also? Unearthly is the only published YA novel featuring angels that doesn't make me want to hunt down the author so I can punch him/her in the face repeatedly.
I know the last few sentences make me seem violent beyond all reason, but believe me I have plenty of reason. Just read every other YA paranormal romance featuring angels and you'll agree. And anyway, when I say 'stabbing spree' I really mean 'write a scathing review and/or weep for all the trees destroyed in order to publish such atrocities'. And when I say: 'hunt down the author so I can punch him/her in the face'? ...well, I actually mean that*.
Seeing as most publishers have been saturating the market with badly written, ill-plotted out, basically retarded series about some supernatural something falling in love--twuuuuu wuvvvvv--with a vapid human I'd begun to believe there was no such thing as a good, or even great, YA paranormal romance. Especially when angels are involved. But Cynthia Hand changed my mind with her debut novel, Unearthly.
It's funny, but Unearthly doesn't contain some magical new concept or some amazing innovative plot twist that will make your head explode. It's just good. That's it. Turns out Cynthia Hand's "secret" is actually no secret at all. She employs the method of showing her audience, not telling. That's right, Cynthia Hand doesn't assume her audience is mentally-challenged. Also? Her main character, Clara Gardener, doesn't have the mental capacity of a boy-crazed, unmedicated ADHD 'tween hopped up on pixie stix. She's normal. And by normal I mean Clara's just a regular, well-adjusted, non-angry, non-emo, non-cutting teen. Although, yeah, she has angel blood pumping through her veins, but she's incredibly easy to relate to nonetheless.
What I love: Clara doesn't do what every other protagonist in this genre does: inform you she's super intelligent "'cuz she likes calculus-n-stuff", only to prove otherwise as she dithers about like a blind slack-jawed yokel the duration of the novel. She's better than that. Also? She has a healthy yet realistic relationship with her mother. They actually talk to each other and are, for the most part, honest with one another. It's quite refreshing actually.
Clara isn't the the world's only, most speshul angel-blood evuh. She's actually one of many, though at first she doesn't know of any others beside her mother and her younger brother. She also isn't super good at everything she does. Clara doesn't have every boy falling for her, at least no more then your average teenage girl. And like all teenagers she manages to make a fool of herself every once in a while. Like I said: refreshing.
What I really love (skip this if you plan on reading this book as it is sort of spoiler-y, albeit hardly): (view spoiler)[the romance. It's a real (more importantly healthy) teenage romance wherein the characters actually talk to one another, get to know one another before falling in love, or even liking each other for that matter.
The guy in this book? Is normal. He acts like a normal teenage guy. He's not unintentionally feminine or too-good-to-be-true. But he's not over-the-top alpha male either. He's just that one guy you went to school with. You know, the guy everyone liked not because he was the hottest or richest, in fact he probably wasn't, but because he was funny, charismatic and just overall likable despite his flaws (though, yeah, it didn't hurt that he was good looking). Yeah. That guy.
And when Clara gets together with him, well, they aren't obnoxious. No gazing into one another's eyes talking about how unworthy they feel. No waxing-poetic about perfect Adonis-like bodies and angel-like faces. Their relationship contains actual substance. (hide spoiler)]
What I don't necessarily care for: This book contains a love triangle. Sort of. I mean it's hardly even present. And the protagonist isn't playing both guys for all they're worth. And there isn't any cheating going on, not even in Clara's heart. BUT it's still a love triangle of sorts and I'm afraid it might end badly for all involved because of various reasons I won't go into here.
That said, even if over the course of this series the triangle does play out the way I don't want it to, I think I'll be okay. Clara has free will and I am confident she will take the time to think things through rationally. She can choose between one or the other regardless of the consequences (good and/or bad). In fact she pretty much makes her decision in this book.
So yeah, I recommend Unearthly.
*Disclaimer: I would never actually hunt down and assault any author. No matter how much they deserve it (Smeyer, James Frey, LAUREN KATE, Becca Fitzpatrick... I could go on). There are times in which I am sorely tempted to but I wouldn't. I'm passionate about literature but NOT insane. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I'm still on vacation with limited access to the internet so I have to make this quick. To be honest, I spent the majority of this book thinking, "thiI'm still on vacation with limited access to the internet so I have to make this quick. To be honest, I spent the majority of this book thinking, "this is a good book, but it's not that good" because I knew exactly what was going on. The "mystery" was never a mystery for me but I kept reading, waiting patiently for this book to blow me away--because I knew it would, eventually, based on all the four and five-star reviews given by trusted Goodreaders (namely Reviewer X, Tatiana and April).
And, yeah, now that I've finished reading Jellicoe Road I can say this book has 'it'. That thing that so few YA books tend to have these days. I don't even know what 'it' is, exactly. But I'll tell you this for free: my cry-holes got leaky during the last fifty pages or so. Yeah, you read that right. I. Cried. And the author didn't have to stoop to throwing some insane manipulative twist at me. She's just that good at writing. Her story came together beautifully for me and I am thoroughly satisfied. This book deserves all sorts of awards.
I will say that I spent the first fifty pages or so wondering what the hell was going on because I was dumb enough to assume the prologue was from the main character's POV. Then I looked back and saw that the incident that happened in the prologue happened twenty-two years before chapter one. Our main character is seventeen years old. So, yeah--not the same person. Just keep that in mind when you pick this book up. Also, you might want to write down the names of the characters mentioned in Hannah's manuscript--who's related to who and whatnot. It makes it much easier to keep track of the story within the story.
Anyway, I love this book. I'm going to start recommending it to anyone who asks. Soooo...read this book. Now.
P.S. I'll probably post a much better review of Jellicoe Road when I get home. Which won't be for a few weeks or so.
1. Zombies iz people too. So they should be treated with respect, yo. (more about this later)
2. BoThis is what I learned from reading Rot & Ruin:
1. Zombies iz people too. So they should be treated with respect, yo. (more about this later)
2. Books containing zombies can be really irritating and boring.
You see, I didn't know this was a possibility. I mean, it's zombies we're talking about here. How could zombies be boring? Turns out all you need to do is add a lame teenage romance and BAM! What really matters (ZOMBIES!) gets shoved onto the backburner in favor of the not-so-important (love story??? Who invited that guy? Alright, I'm out!).
It needs to be said: if I wanted a romance novel I'd waste my time reading the likes of Nicholas Sparks. And that would never happen. Ever. Besides, I picked up a zombie book because I wanted to read a zombie story. Horror, Violence, Decapitations--oh my!
Maberry's story has these things, but not enough to hold my interest. Most of the time we're being preached to by Tom Imura, Benny's older brother. See Tom Imura is a zombie slayer for hire. One of the best. You'd think a katana-wielding slayer extraordinaire would liven things up a bit. But no. No, he doesn't. He just waxes philosophical about how zombies are people too.
The treating-zombies-with-respect-by-not-killing-them-unless-you-have-to thing? Ruined this book. Basically the argument defending this school of thought goes a little like this:
Tom Imura: Pretend you're at a loved one's funeral and suddenly someone you don't know shows up and like defecates on your loved one's corpse. Wouldn't that anger you? Wouldn't that be disrespectful to your loved one and everyone who ever cared about them?
Me: HECK YEAH! Let me at that disgusting jerk!
Tom Imura: These zombies are other people's loved ones.
Me: I totally agree. So sad. :( Go on.
Tom Imura: Okay, so when you go around decapitating random zombies who are in no way bothering you you're pretty much doing the same thing as that filthy stranger that took a massive dump on your love one's corpse.
Tom Imura: So basically you should just leave all those walking corpses--you know, the ones that totally want to eat your face and make you a zombie--alone. Because if you don't that's the same is defecating on a dead body. Or something.
Me: *laughing hysterically* er...what??? I fail to see the connection. Your analogy is shoddy at best.
Tom Imura: No really, think about it. Zombies have feelings too, as do their loved ones who may or may not be alive after the zombie apocalypse happens. Just leave all those innocent flesh-eating zombies alone, k. Promise? Unless, of course, a family member of a specific zombie hires you to hunt down said zombie for the sole purpose of decapitating them.
Me: Uhhhh...no. If a zombie apocalypse happens I'm going to decapitate EVERY ZOMBIE I SEE. Wanna know why? Because I'm thoughtful. See, if I'm ever unfortunate enough to become a zombie I hope someone would be thoughtful enough to decapitate me and burn my remains to ash. As far as I'm concerned it would be incredibly disrespectful to do otherwise.
I certainly don't want to walk the earth for an indefinite amount of time, rotting away and eating other people. What if I end up being one of those naked zombies? No one wants to be a naked zombie. I'd rather be dead dead then be a naked zombie, or a zombie of any sort for that matter.
Also? Zombies carry disease. A freaking plague. Why wouldn't I want to stop that from spreading?
I have zero desire to finish Rot & Ruin despite the fact I've got only 25 pages to go. Like I said earlier, there is a laaaaaame teenage romance that pretty much hijacks the plot. I probably would just bite the bullet and finish the book if I hadn't had to force myself to get this far. So no, I can't do it Cap'n.
Jonathan Maberry is totally going be among the first to die when zombies attack. Mark my words. ...more
Update 03-11-11(2): So my last update was hastily written, and in anger. Now that I've had time to cool off and think clearly I'm feeling bad. So hereUpdate 03-11-11(2): So my last update was hastily written, and in anger. Now that I've had time to cool off and think clearly I'm feeling bad. So here's another, less in-your-face way of saying it:
Warning: this review contains cheekiness. Please do not be offended or take this review too seriously as it is meant in jest. If you are a serious Dresden fan this review is probably not for you. So you should just read another review, k. Have a nice day. :)
Update 03-11-11: I've pretty much had it with you people. Apparently this review is "really offensive". But guess what? I'm not going to change it. It was written in jest.
What I am going to do is say that if Jim Butcher can write women as helpless little sex kittens and call it "noir-style", therefore OK, I can write a so-called "offensive" and "sexist" review, in jest, and still sleep at night. Got it?
I've spent a good portion of my married life wondering what in the heck is going on in my husband's head. To be honest, I just don't understand men in general. I don't get what motivates them to do what they do. I've been told that I'm over-thinking it, men aren't complicated. Apparently sex has a lot to do with the decisions they make.
I've spent a lot of time rejecting this idea, thinking it cannot possibly be true, at least not totally. Even my husband, man-child extraordinaire that he can be at times cannot be so basic, so primal. My husband is incredibly intelligent, has a wealth of knowledge stored up in that noggin of his. He's motivated by more then just sex... right???
Then, every once in a while, I go and read a book written by a man and I'm reminded that indeed, I have been over-thinking it. My husband, and all other men for that matter, are probably thinking about sex, or things of a sexual nature far more often than I could imagine.
When it comes to books written by men, more often than not the male characters describe women they encounter in a sexual manner. The descriptions don't even have to be dirty, in fact they usually aren't. But I still find it irritating when the most basic observations seem sexual. Besides, I simply cannot relate. When I see a man who is attractive I think, Wow! or something like that. But I don't wax poetic about his bazillion abs and how much I'd like to feel them pressed up against me, or whatever.
I tend to focus on how I feel when I'm with people. For instance my initial attraction to my husband had to do with the fact that he made me laugh and I felt comfortable around him. Looks didn't factor into the equation.
(For the record: I didn't find him particularly attractive, at least no more then the next guy. Plus, he used to dress like a friggin' hobo. Had it not been for his awesome personality, his sense of humor, I wouldn't have been interested. For this same reason I have a massive crush on Conan O'Brien, no joke. Conan is sexy, but I digress).
My point is: because I don't exactly understand men, how they think, and how I'm left feeling disappointed by the tiny bit that does seem to make sense, I tend to avoid books written by men.
That being said, I don't totally dislike this series. There is a lot of potential here.
Jim Butcher built a fascinating world with some interesting and, as far as I can tell, original rules about wizardry and other things supernatural. For instance, the MC, a wizard, cannot meet the eyes of another person without seeing into their soul, and they his. It's so strangely intimate I can't help but be intrigued by the idea. And he has this assistant named Bob, who is actually a spirit stuck in a human skull--he's kind of like a grimoire, codex and a computer mixed together, but even better. And I like the idea of a wizard solving supernatural crimes. I don't know, the concept totally seems to work for me.
Overall, I sort of like this series and plan on reading the third book, even though I felt Fool Moon, the second installment in the Dresden Files was incredibly boring. Why I found this book boring is anybody's guess since it dealt with werewolves, and I tend to like werewolf lore.
Even the romantic element in this book, though semi-interesting, sort of fell flat. Heck, the sex scene, which was actually quite tasteful, happened at a really odd time. And Dresden cried afterward, which, really, circumstances being what they were, made sense. But still.
Fine. I admit it. It turns out ultra-sensitive men make me uncomfortable. I mean, crying after sex? Really? Here's the deal, I was raised in a household full of boys. I have five older brothers. They didn't talk about their feelings and never cried in front of me, much--it has to be said: I'm not much of a crier. My dad was in the Marines for twenty years, he went to Vietnam. Both my parents are old-school and Hispanic to boot. Which brings me to my next point: even though I'm repelled by Harry Dresden's sensitive nature, I still find his old-school chivalrous manners appealing.
I know, I know--I'm (kind of) a fraud! I let everyone think I'm all about feminism, but I (secretly) like when men hold doors for me. Not because I can't do so myself--because I can and I do all the time--but because it's just nice when somebody does that sort of thing, ya know? And while I like my independence, and I'm a strong woman (both physically and emotionally) I've always liked men with protective instincts--notice I said protective, not controlling.
Basically, I like knowing someone's got my back. This is why I sort of like Harry, despite his sometimes-wussy ways.
You probably think I'm not being consistent, that my reasons for liking this series are not exactly rational. You know what? You're right. What can I say? I'm a woman. It's my prerogative to be inconsistent and irrational. And anyway, things could be much worse. I could be a man, thinking of little else but sex all the live-long day. ;) ...more
Still thinking about the rating I've given this. Really loved this book, but I still have a few issues with it. Chances are the rating won't change buStill thinking about the rating I've given this. Really loved this book, but I still have a few issues with it. Chances are the rating won't change but I still want a few more days to continue thinking about it. ...more