Fun little read. I found the book to be a bit on the cheesy side, but it felt as though the author did so deliberately, and in a bit of good-natured fFun little read. I found the book to be a bit on the cheesy side, but it felt as though the author did so deliberately, and in a bit of good-natured fun-poking at all how cliche cozies can be. The fact that she named one of the editors "Flora Merriweather," and gave that character the authority to make or break up & coming children's/ya authors made me giggle. All in all, an enjoyable read. I'll be looking for the next in the series, and hope to see some growth in Lila's future. And maybe her own Happily Ever After with one of two very handsome gentlemen....more
Got to page 60 and found that it'd failed to capture my attention. Gave up. Not wasting more of my precious reading-time on a book that felt like it wGot to page 60 and found that it'd failed to capture my attention. Gave up. Not wasting more of my precious reading-time on a book that felt like it was going nowhere fast....more
While I found a couple of the author's ideas pretty far-fetched, over all I enjoyed his tone and the thoughts and ideas he shared. I've been curious tWhile I found a couple of the author's ideas pretty far-fetched, over all I enjoyed his tone and the thoughts and ideas he shared. I've been curious the past couple years what the religions of my ancestors pre-christianity would have looked like, and this gives me a large piece of the puzzle. Though, he speaks to Anglo-Saxon Paganism, I would gather that it would be quite a bit the same whether those ancestors were Saxon immigrants to England, or residents of what are still German lands....more
**spoiler alert** The use of simile was atrocious in this book! I mean, it started almost instantly, as the MFC (Main Female Character) is being rescu**spoiler alert** The use of simile was atrocious in this book! I mean, it started almost instantly, as the MFC (Main Female Character) is being rescued by MMC (Main Male Character), and he describes her red hair as "Hair like an Alpine Sunset." I mean seriously, the guy's swinging from a rope beneath a helicopter and he's comparing her hair to an Alpine Sunset? We get similar examples of how freakin' red MFC's hair is throughout the book, just in case we forget that she's got red hair, or that the MMC thinks it's beautiful. The exact same thing is done regarding her eyes "like the finest cognac" and his eyes "electric blue as a lightning bolt."
Seriously, I hope the author grew out of using so damn many similes.
The dialog itself wasn't too bad, but the characters pissed me off with their on again/off again desire for each other. Well, not so much their desire for each other as their willingness to just get it on already. And the fact that they both kept SAYING that they weren't going to do anything about that desire because they didn't know the MFC's marital status, then turning right around and exhibiting exactly how much they were ACTUALLY concerned that she may be married to somebody else. They make soooo much over how that "they're not the type of people" to cheat/commit adultery, then do exactly that, since there was no proof yet as to whether or not MFC was still married.
The whole book drove me nuts, really. Best part was that it took me only about 24 hours to read. Will be looking to avoid any more by this author....more
Until about the last 50 pages, I found every character in this story to be abhorant and unlovable. Only in the last pages did I find ANY empathy for CUntil about the last 50 pages, I found every character in this story to be abhorant and unlovable. Only in the last pages did I find ANY empathy for Cathy or Hareton or Nelly. The rest of the characters were completely without any appeal to me. I've heard Heathcliff mentioned as a beautifully tormented romantic figure, but I fail to see any appeal. The whole story was something that took me ages to get around to reading. I'd tried as a teen, only to put it down after less than 20 pages. This time, it took me the better part of the month to read it, and I'm somewhat sorry I wasted time on such atrocious characters. Glad I can finally say that I've read this book, however. As a book-lover, it weighed on my mind that I'd never read this classic. Now I can say that I've read it, and hated it....more
this story was so heart-wrenching. Sang Ly and Ki Lim live a very difficult, often drab life, picking garbage from the largest dump in Phnom Pehn, inthis story was so heart-wrenching. Sang Ly and Ki Lim live a very difficult, often drab life, picking garbage from the largest dump in Phnom Pehn, in Cambodia. Hoping daily for enough recycle-ables to resell for the money to pay their rent and to buy food for the day and medicine for their sick child. Sang Ly conceives an idea to improve their lives for the sake of their son, pressing the angry woman who serves as the rent collector for their ramshackle huts into becoming teacher. We see the progression from simple, illiterate track-picker and angry, drunk rent-collector to two women who find compassion and empathy for each other, and build a friendship that none would have expected. This book taught me more about the Khmer Rouge regime than I've ever understood.
There were two negatives that stuck out at me about this book. The first was the extreme sentimentality of this book. The second was the tone of the narrator, Sang Ly. She spoke with a tone more in line with an educated American woman. These two factors keep me from giving this book 5 stars. Over all the story though moved quickly and kept my attention well. That I learned as much about the Khmer Rouge as I did was a bonus. I recall hearing a bit as a child about the atrocities committed against the people of Cambodia, but it was all rather vague until this story.
**spoiler alert** I won an ARC of this book through First Reads here on goodreads.com
For all that this author is a "New York Times Bestselling Author"**spoiler alert** I won an ARC of this book through First Reads here on goodreads.com
For all that this author is a "New York Times Bestselling Author" (according to the snippet on the front cover of the book) this book felt like first-efforts. The premise was a good one: bodyguard gets called in to protect a bunch of models on their cross-country tour after they get a threatening letter. THEN one of the models is killed, and it's a race against time to protect the rest of the lovely ladies from a similar fate.
If only the tale itself had kept that pace. The author instead does more telling than showing, spending more time on scene setting than in giving us real action. The dialog between the Main Characters reads more like Justin Beiber's song "Baby." "Baby, baby, oh, baby, baby, oh...." The fact that the Main Male Character refers to both the Main Female Character and his own daughter as "Baby" throughout the story is creepy. We also get introduced CONSTANTLY to the same characters. EVERY time Carlyle shows up, it's "Matt Carlyle." It's never "Carlyle" or "Mr. Carlyle" or "Matt" but "MATT CARLYLE." Same goes for Val/Valerie/Valentine Hart/Hartman, and Ethan Brodie. I don't think the average reader is so scatterbrained as to continually forget who's speaking or being spoken to.
Then we see what SHOULD be secondary characters being given damn near as much story-time and identical dialog styles as the MFC and MMC of this book. Meg and Dirk get their own story, they should not have co-opted roughly 100 pages of this novel with their story. And, dang, does Meg REALLY refer to her son as "little Charlie" every time she thinks or speaks of him? It's not indicated that "Little Charlie's" dad is "Charlie Sr" or "Big Charlie," so why a Mom would think of her own child in those terms is beyond me. This "Little Charlie" never even made an appearance in the book, but already he's grating on my nerves.
There are entire scenes added that do nothing to further the story (fancy lunch out during the tour, shopping trip for the models), and should've been left on the cutting room floor. There's a secondary-killer added because obviously the author couldn't figure out how to keep the drama going without adding in another bad-guy. He was superfluous and that sub-story didn't add a darned thing to the over-all nature of the book. It felt like the author had her premise, but couldn't figure out how to carry it through to the end of the book without adding extra characters just so that the initial premise made sense. It wasn't a successful endeavor.
There were additional issues of tense-jumping, and glossing almost entirely over scenes that should've been fleshed out more fully in favor of those extraneous scenes that weren't necessary parts of the story at all.
By the last 100 pages, I was aching to be done with this novel. I've seen other reviewers talking about how excellent a writer this author is, but I just cannot see myself picking up another one of her novels. I'm giving 2 stars because DID finish the book, and I reserve single stars for books that are so dreadfully awful that I cannot even finish them....more
This book started out almost painfully for me. I began it thinking that Ms. Marple was going to be the narrator, so I was rather surprised to see VicaThis book started out almost painfully for me. I began it thinking that Ms. Marple was going to be the narrator, so I was rather surprised to see Vicar Clement as the narrator and main character and Ms. Marple as a secondary character. The dialog was also initially so cliche and stilted that it hurt to read. I understand that this book (and A. Christie's others) set the dialog standards to which others attempt to rise, thereby becoming cliche, but the dialog here felt more cliche in some ways than those that truly are, for all that this book is "THE original" so to speak.
By about page 80, the story began to pick up pace, the characters began to settle into their roles, and reading went more quickly than it'd begun. I finished the book feeling that I'm not very interested in reading another A. Christie. I'm glad I finally picked up an A. Christie book to read, but I don't think I'll be bothering with any more. This one just didn't keep my attention and interest well enough to continue reading Ms. Marple and co....more
While the stories about Booker & Frannie, and Cary & Nora were sweet. the story about Axel and Libby was just as fabulous as any of LF's otherWhile the stories about Booker & Frannie, and Cary & Nora were sweet. the story about Axel and Libby was just as fabulous as any of LF's other love stories....more
Not my favorite of Rollins' novels, but pretty high on the list. The action was non-stop, the characters were likeable. Baako in particular gripped atNot my favorite of Rollins' novels, but pretty high on the list. The action was non-stop, the characters were likeable. Baako in particular gripped at my heart. And we got to see a whole new side of Kowalski, which was great....more
One of my least favorite books by L.F. The only story that felt worth my time was the central story about Marci & Oz. The first story, Parker &One of my least favorite books by L.F. The only story that felt worth my time was the central story about Marci & Oz. The first story, Parker & Lily, was ok but felt ridiculously short. There needed to be much more time devoted to character development. The last story was almost painful to read. The main character, Levi had a very paternalistic, patronizing attitude toward Beth throughout the story. Beth's concerns and desires (unless she was actively desiring Levi) were treated as childish & unimportant. It was mentioned a number of times that Levi knew what was best for Beth, and the over all attitude toward her was that she didn't know enough to think for herself. I DO love a good Alpha, but this particular story got on my nerves in a very bad way. I'm beginning to be less than thrilled with some of L.F's books, lately. Or, perhaps her short stories more precisely. I've got two more short story compilations by or featuring L.F. in my to-be-read stack that're starting to appeal less and less....more