Sunday, April 30, 2017

Mirrorgate by Nathan T. Bishop (Read 4/11/17)

So disclaimer, I actually know this author personally, so I'm a little nervous about this.  The book opens on a murder scene and Scott is trying to remember what happened:  blood, a machete, and a dead body.  Not such a good start for Scott. 
There were some great idea in this book, it just felt incomplete to me.  It felt like parts were still missing and the story just needs a bit more fleshing out, but it is a great start and a good premise.  Some of the early parts of the book left me confused as to why they were included, could the dog or the pranks tie in later on?  I think that is part of why I felt it was incomplete, it seemed like there was foreshadowing that didn't come back into play.  Nathan also left a nice set up for a sequel though.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Once Bitten, Twice Dead by Bianca D'Arc (Read 4/2/17 to 4/7/17) - 2.5 Star

This book was given to me as a birthday present.  There has been a mistake at a lab and instead of super soldiers, the scientist created zombies!  Officer Sarah Petit was attacked while on patrol, and instead of turning she is one of the very, very few who is immune and she joins forces with the Green Berets to fight the infestation in her home town.  There is a love story, here with Sarah and one of the Green Beret officers Xavier Beauvoir. I liked the story premise.  My issue with the book is the sex.  I'm not saying I had an issue with the sex itself, was it a little more unrealistic, vulgar and violent than my preference, yes but that wasn't my problem.  This is a paranormal romance, I expected sex and even some rough sex, and unrealistic romance novel sex.  Maybe my sex life has sucked for the past 18 years, but I have never had the sort of sex portrayed in romance novels, I've had good sex but not that connected OMG he kisses me and I come sex.  I don't mind that is how it is portrayed.  My problem was that the sex was a bigger part of the story than the story.  D'Arc has a great storyline with the attempt to make super solider and ooops we made zombies.  Its not a world wide epidemic yet, and it not a post apocalypse world.  It was what would lead up to that unless they get it under control.  I love that, I loved the science aspect and wish that had more detail.  I wish there had been more investigation into culprits behind the scenes, expand on that criminal thriller aspect.  I liked the fight scenes, and was disappointed that there were so few.  I feel like if D'Arc had focused more on the storyline and a little less on the "amazing" sex that I could have rated this book higher.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Homeland by R.A. Salvatore (Read 3/8/17 to 3/28/17) - 2 Star

This is March's BOTM book. In Menzoberranzan, a city in the underdark, is here the dark elves or drow live. This is the story of Drizzt Do'Urden from birth until he reaches adulthood. I found the writing very dense and I had to really concentrate. A lot of the book dragged for me.  I will say that it was fun to read from the bad guys perspective, the backstabbing and pettiness, different from always reading from the Hero.  Although the idea that evil society being matriarchal  had some social commentary messages I'm not sure I am so keen on.  It is obvious that this is part of a series, but I can say for sure I have no intention of picking up the rest.  This just didn't interest me enough to continue.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton (Read 3/24/17 to 3/27/17) - 3 Star

This book was recommended to me by a friend, that it would speak to me where I am in my life.  She was both wrong and right.  I could see that Glennon was going through a personal crisis and facing a divorce.  However I couldn't relate to her indecision and inability to see herself. When I left my ex-husband things made sense again, there was no indecision or doubt.  I could relate to her sense of loss, and once she found her inner warrior that made sense, but the difference is my warrior appeared the night I left and I walk the path to this day.  I knew from the start the healing had to start with me, for my children.  I can relate to her feeling of not belonging and inadequacy, I have my own self esteem issues, not going to try and cover that up.  But it seemed like she had a much further journey than I did, where she ended is where I started at.  It felt like she was confirming things I already knew, not opening my eyes to a new view.  And maybe that was my mistake, my friend made it seem like there was great insight in this book, which there is, but it is insights I discovered over a year ago and it didn't speak to me as much as I thought it would.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Touched by an Alien by Gini Koch (Read 2/28/17 to 3/3/17) - 4 Star

This is from my March book club book, and recommended by another member.  This was a super fun book, and I can't wait to read the whole series.  One of my other book club members said it was like X-Files, Men in Black and Buffy all rolled into one, and she is right!  There is a fun an quirky sci-fi element that doesn't take itself or the storyline too seriously along with a kick ass protagonist with witty repartee to give Joss a run for his money.  There were times where the cheese factor was a 10, but your so busy laughing that you don't care.  You are thrown into the action from the very first page and it doesn't slow down. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Three Sisters Island Trilogy by Nora Roberts (Read 2/16/17 to 2/27/17)

300 years ago to avoid persecution during the Salem witch trials, 3 witches Earth, Air and Fire joined powers to create a safe haven, Three Sisters Island.  But their haven wasn't as safe as they thought it would be, each sister made a choice that set a course for their decedents.  300 years later each "sister" must face their ancestors mistake and make it right, or doom the island they love to sink into the sea.

Dance Upon the Air by Nora Roberts (Read 2/19/17 to 2/11/17) - 4 Stars
This was for my book club February read.  We are introduced to Three Sisters island and the three witches that must break the curse to prevent it falling into the sea.  The first witch is Nell, I could easily relate to her. Be warned she is an abuse victim and there are some graphic scenes that could cause the need for some trigger warnings.  Nell has run to the island to escape her abusive husband, and there she finds what she has always been looking for, a home and a family, but how long can she hold on to it?   I really liked it, I think I just like Nora Roberts.  The Characters were very relatable and likable, and I enjoyed the magic element.  The love story was good, not overwhelming but just right. I thought Nell and Zack were great together, he was just what she needed.  He was there, he acknowledged her past, but didn't treat her like a victim.  He showed her respect and love, and allowed her the time to trust him and open up to him. 

Heaven and Earth by Nora Roberts (Read 2/11/17 to 2/16/17) - 3 Stars
This follows the second witch Ripley and her path to love and breaking the curse.  Ripley walked away from magic 10 years ago, and curse or no curse she has no plans to go back.  I don't really like Ripley, so I had a hard time getting through this book.  I also don't care for her love interest MacAllester Booke, the whole thing didn't do it for me really.  I just wanted to get it done with so I could read the third book.  There was a lot more internal struggle here, and the love story was very blah to me, probably because I didn't like the characters so I had no vested interest in their romance.

Face the Fire by Nora Roberts (Read 2/24/17 to 2/27/17) - 4 Stars
This is the final book in the series and we deal with the final part of the curse.  Mia lost her love Sam logan 10 years ago, he left her broken hearted, but unlike her ancestor she found a way to survive the loss and may have even grown stronger despite it,  Then Sam comes back to the island and she has to face not only her part of the curse, but her broken heart too.  I thought this was a great conclusion to the trilogy.  It did a great job of wrapping up all the storylines.  I like how strong and independent Mia is.  Sam has a lot to live up to earn her love in my opinion after the hurt he caused.  I'm actually kinda on the fence about him, there were things I liked about his character, but at time I felt he should get thrown in the sea too.  I think they were a good match ultimately though.

I've decided after these books and reading the in-death series (a loooonnngggg post to come when I get to end of that series)  that I like Nora Roberts writing.  I like her style and here stories are always engaging to me.  I know that she is known as a romance writer, and there is the romance element, but that is really a side factor to whatever story she is trying to tell.  Almost like throwing sex in a movie, does it make the watcher happy?  Yeah.  Would the story still be good with out it?  Yeah.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Hangsman by Shirley Jackson (Read 2/2/17 to 2/21/17) - 2 Star

So this is supposed to be a coming of age story I think.  Natalie goes off to college and leave her childhood behind and becomes an adult.  Now I normally like Shirley Jackson, but I didn't like this book.  I felt it was hard to follow and the characters were un-relatable.  I think Jackson did it on purpose, made them all seem a little crazy but I can;t for the life of me see why.  Natalie's father is controlling and she is sheltered.  I also wonder if she doesn't have multiple personalities.  The writing felt disjointed and hard to read.  It almost felt to me like I was reading a stream of consciousness of a crazy person.  I couldn't follow the timeline or the character arc...and then it ended and I didn't see what was accomplished.  
The description says its based on an actual disappearance...totally missed that part, as far as I can tell nothing bad happens to anybody, besides miserable marriages.  Its supposed to be this chilling and suspenseful story, but I had no interest on what happened to Natalie and I didn't feel it was chilling, it was chaotic maybe.  I just didn't like it, I was bored and found it a bit tedious to read.