Mistresslala's Reviews > Strange Neighbors

Strange Neighbors by Ashlyn Chase
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's review
Apr 26, 2011

did not like it
bookshelves: vaginalalaland, paranormal-romance

** spoiler alert ** I’m not going to lie. I like a good, cheesy paranormal romance here and there and often find the light, easy reading to be the perfect mind numbing candy I need. I never expect a lot from this type of book – nothing earth shattering, no new revelations or deep thought provoking stuff but this book....ugh.

It started out OK with an interesting premise. An apartment building full of supernatural creatures, a new neighbor, a love interest, etc. but halfway through the book if it had been an actually book I would have thrown it across the living room. There were so many instances where the characters and plot could have been developed a little more and I know this is supposed to be the first installment of the series but if the author doesn't give enough interest and character development to make me care about what happens to the characters then who cares if there’s a number 2 or 3 in the series?

That being said my two main complaints were the often unnecessarily detailed and drawn out sex scenes where the language was repeated over and over again for almost every scene. I’m all for romance novels and some steamy scenes but they began to feel like page filler. The main female character, Merry, also seems not well thought out. At times I felt she came across as childish, immature, naive and not very “experienced” but these perceptions were often rocked when it came to her dialogue in the sex scenes.

My last complaint, and the reason for wanting to toss the book, was the number of times PMS and the “seasonal pill” was mentioned. Is the author getting some kick back from the makers of this birth control pill? Do we really need to read a few pages of Merry going on and on about PMS and being on the pill? And, do we really need a detailed explanation (twice) about how this seasonal pill works? It seems irrational and honestly, as a woman, insulting that a female character (a nurse at that) would blame all her irrational moods, behavior, crying, and indecisiveness on PMS. What age are we living in?

Towards the end of the book things began to fall apart and almost every little thing was annoying. We have the character of Aunt Dottie who is constantly interfering in things but then towards the end (even though she’s been tied up by a vampire and attacked by a bird man) she seems content to smile and leave for a vacation with her shifter-bird husband like nothing happened. Really? Because um, if I were tied up by a vampire I think I’d have a little more to say about the matter.

At the end of the day I could not stand the story, the characters or the plot. I didn’t even find it humorous. I kept reading in the hopes it would round itself out and because I rarely don’t finish a book. It’s a shame, I think the story had potential and could have been fun. Unfortunately, it fell very short.
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