The Darkest Joy by Marata Eros eARC received from Gallery Books via Edelweiss Release Date: February 18, 2014 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters SayThe Darkest Joy by Marata Eros eARC received from Gallery Books via Edelweiss Release Date: February 18, 2014 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: Had great potential, but the writing needs serious editing
I really wanted to like this one. It sounded so great—a Julliard candidate whose family is murdered runs off to Alaska to find herself again—only the killer won’t let her get away. It’s a great concept, and I love romantic suspense novels. However, this one was not done well. The writing seemed almost tacky at times, the characters walked the line on believability, and romance was way too insta-lovey.
It’s a big deal for me to call something insta-love. I usually like the “love at first sight” romance, but the romance in this one just didn’t seem realistic. Chance rescues Brooke after a suicide attempt, and the very next day, they are both in love with each other? I just don’t see that happening. There could have been some kind of Nightingale syndrome, but not on the part of both of them. It just seemed so fake to me, and as a result, I had a hard time even when the relationship did progress to a point where love would have been possible.
The writing really bugged me at times, too. There were some chapters that were well-written and times when I enjoyed the story; however, there were other times when the writing seemed to be very, for lack of a better word, childish. Too many simple sentences and too many bland words that just didn’t create a visual effect for me as a reader. And the love scenes? I literally laughed out loud (not in a good way) because the descriptions were just so awkward.
And then we have the characters—at times, each of the characters were interesting and you could see behind their actions. But then there were others times when they just seemed so flat and boring. This is a story about recovery, and I just didn’t see Brooke going through those stages of grief that she should have gone through. She went from clinically depressed and wanting to die to “I’m so in love” and that’s all that matters. Plus, I found it really unbelievable that she would ignore the FBI’s calls and letters when the murderer is still on the loose.
Overall, this is not one of the better NA books on the market right now. It is one of the first ones I have read that had an element of suspense in it; however, it just wasn’t done well. I think with some extreme editing on the syntax, plus some more vivid descriptions, this could be a much better book ...more
Avalon by Mindee Arnett eARC received from Harper Teen Release Date: January 21, 2014 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: Great setting, but disAvalon by Mindee Arnett eARC received from Harper Teen Release Date: January 21, 2014 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: Great setting, but disappointing plot and characters
(This review is over the first 67% of the book)
I started out excited to read this one because the reviews had been great. Unfortunately, I just didn’t see what everyone else saw in this book. While I enjoyed the space setting and the macabre events that started the book, the characters and slow plot ruined it for me.
I’ll start out with what I enjoyed—the setting. Mindee did an amazing job describing the creepy hollowness of space. When they enter the dead zone (the part of space that seems creepily supernatural—she calls it something else, but I can’t remember what at this point), the eeriness really starts to go into overdrive. I loved the murderous and mysterious scenes that we see in the lost spaceship, and the strange anomalies that keep occurring were fantastic. If you are a big sci-fi fan, you might enjoy this book just because of the great details in the setting.
Still, even though I loved that part of it, I couldn’t get past the flat characters. I tried and tried to relate to one of them, but I just couldn’t. The dialogue seemed very young (middle grade, really), and the little romance that I did see (I stopped at 67%) was dull and really seemed to detract from the rest of the story. I also couldn’t make it past the slow plot. I’ve heard that it picks up in the second half, but after a month of trying to read some every day, I got to the point where I just didn’t think anything could bring me back into the story.
Overall, this wasn’t a book for me, although it might be one that big fans of sci-fi love. If you plan to read it, I hope you are able to enjoy it more than I did. ...more
The writing was good but I just can't get past thr content. I know they aren't related by blood, but its just too much for me. I read the entire thingThe writing was good but I just can't get past thr content. I know they aren't related by blood, but its just too much for me. I read the entire thing becsise5 it has such rave reviews. But I still just, ugh....more
Foreplay by Sophie Jordan ARC received from William Morrow via LibraryThing Available: November 5, 2013 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: ReecForeplay by Sophie Jordan ARC received from William Morrow via LibraryThing Available: November 5, 2013 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: Reece, Reece, He’s Our Man, If He Can’t Do it..Wait, HE CAN! (He really, really can!)
Sophie Jordan makes me miss my college days!! I just loved dorm life and going out trying to scope out the hot bartenders, and Sophie brought all that right back with her sexy NA, Foreplay.
Sexy and dangerous bartender BFF’s hot, older brother Friends who love to be the wingman
This story has all the goods for a great, entertaining read. But, it’s not all fun and games. Behind the sexy wit and steamy scenes, there is a story of a girl and guy who both hold guilt and secrets. Pepper is the quiet, shy “nice girl” who has a hard time cuddling up to guys. She’s been in love with her best friend’s brother for as long as she can remember, and when he suddenly becomes available, she realizes she is oh-so-no-experienced in boy/girl relations. The answer to her problems? A little lesson in foreplay by the local hottie bartender, Reece.
I liked Pepper for the most part, although at times I felt like her reactions were unrealistic. She is a girl who has only ever had one kiss, and most girls like that, presented with a hot guy who is truly caring, would fall head of heels for him. Pepper seems to be able to approach these “lessons” way to cavalierly than I think is realistic. Other than that, I enjoyed her character, and I understand why she was so convinced that Hunter is the guy for her.
Reece had me from the moment he helped with Pepper’s car troubles. The piercing and tattoo just screamed “bad boy,” but he had this seriousness to him that made him charming and cuddly right along with the danger. I loved that he knew what Pepper wanted going in, but he kept trying to win her over. It just made me say, “Awww,” over and over again. Plus, the boy knows how to make a girl fall all over herself.
Sophie did a great job bringing the minor characters to life, too. I just loved Emerson, one of Pepper’s college friends. She’s so dauntless and confident, and she wanted so much to help Pepper be more comfortable around guys. She’s just the kind of girl that everyone wants to meet at college—someone that will always have your back, but will also push you out of your comfort zone in a good way. I can’t wait for her story!
The romance was great, and the steamy scenes will make you want to read them all over again. The only complaint I have is that the climax of the book seemed to be rushed. I wanted more emotion in their connection, but it just seemed more Wham Bam to me. I wish this would have been played out a little more so we could see the feeling beneath the fear and affection.
This is a great read, and fans of NA will definitely want to check it out! ...more
Dark Angel: A Dark Faerie Tale by TJ Bennett eARC received from Entangled Edge via Netgalley Available Oct 22 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters SayDark Angel: A Dark Faerie Tale by TJ Bennett eARC received from Entangled Edge via Netgalley Available Oct 22 Reviewed by: Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: Long winded and disappointing
I really wanted to like this one, so much so that I pushed through it even though I found myself disinterested around the 25% mark. I kept reading hoping it would get better, that the characters would really start to suck me in, that the romance would sweep me off my feet. However, sadly, that time never came; and now I just find myself bitterly disappointed.
I love gothic stories—the mysterious and morose setting, the Byronic heroes, the never-ending mystery. While there are elements of all these things in this novel, none of them really stood out and made a lasting impression. Each one was, for lack of a better word, just “okay.” The setting was interesting—an island that disappears and reappears at the whim of some unknown power. I really liked this idea, but I wanted to see more of the island. We got brief descriptions of it here and there, but it was mainly just a bunch of fog. I wanted to see the mesmerizing cliffs, hear the dangerous call of the sea; but it was never really given to me.
I somewhat enjoyed our dark hero, Gerard. But again, he didn’t really capture me the way so many other gothic characters have. He was gorgeous, full of secrets, and sexily domineering; but I wanted to see more of his and Elizabeth’s relationship. One minute it was angry words, the next minute they were kissing against a wall; but there was no feeling to the scenes. It wasn’t so sexy or powerful that it stole my breath away or that I wanted to read it again. There was so much potential for a great and steamy love story, and I’m sad that we didn’t see it.
I think the thing that bugged me the most was the overwhelming amount of details. I hate to say this, but there were times when I would skip 5-6 pages on my kindle and not miss a single thing!!! That’s when you know there is too much description. I got so frustrated with it because I wanted more suspense, more romance, more danger. I think fans of historical romance will find parts of this story fun and mesmerizing; however, those who like a good dose of romance mingled with the history will be sorely disappointed. ...more
Sea of Shadows by Kelley Armstrong eARC received from Harper via Edelweiss Release Date: April 8, 2014 Reviewed by Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: Slow pSea of Shadows by Kelley Armstrong eARC received from Harper via Edelweiss Release Date: April 8, 2014 Reviewed by Middle Sis Jenn The Sisters Say: Slow plot and boring romance leads to disappointment
This is my first Kelley Armstrong book, and I was looking forward to seeing how she writes. Unfortunately, I am afraid this will be my last Kelley Armstrong book if this is indicative of her other books. I was intrigued by the synopsis of the book—creepy unsettled souls that two twins must put to rest, an ancient evil that hunts them, and two sexy guys to help them along on their quest. Sounds great, right? Unfortunately, all I ended up with was a slow plot that dragged along with only a few unsettling moments, very little information on this so-called “ancient evil,” and little to no romance with the sexy guys.
I think the concept of this book is great, but the delivery just fell short in every way. It actually started out pretty interesting in the prologue…the spirits telling Moria to leave Ronan her blade. I was thinking that was going to start off some great action scenes. Unfortunately, we don’t get to see much into what Ronan uses the blade for. The story picks up 4 months after that when Ashyn is going into the Forest of the Dead. This could have been a great part of the book—I mean, it’s the Forest of the Dead where angry spirits reside! However, all we ended up with was blood everywhere. How did it end up that way? We never got to see. Kelley skipped over everything that could really give you chills.
There also seemed to be way too much going on at once. The girls get separated, each with a guy, and then we get 4-5 chapters following each of them. I just wasn’t a fan of how this was set up, even though I don’t know how else she could have done it. It just seemed like she couldn’t really delve into each of the four characters in the way I wanted her to. As a result, they all stayed a bit flat.
There were some scenes with great potential for romance, too, but they were just blown off. If you know me, you know I love my romance. But this book pretty much has zilch. She hints all the way through of these two feeling something for each other, but nothing ever happens. The relationships stay flat and dull.
At halfway through this book, I could have set it down and never thought of it again. But, I really wanted to see if it would get better. Sadly, it just got even more disappointing. This is one series that I will not continue. ...more