Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Book Review: The Gathering

TITLE: The Gathering
Book 1 in the Darkness Rising Trilogy
AUTHOR: Kelley Armstrong
CATEGORY: Young adult
GENRE: urban fantasy, drama
PREMISE: A girl sets out to investigate her friend's death and uncovers secrets in the home town she's grown up in.
MY REVIEW: One of the things I love about Kelley Armstrong is she thinks outside the box. I don't know about anyone else but when I heard about a spin-off to Darkest Powers this totally wasn't what I was expecting. This is not a bad thing either. As a result I was interested throughout.
Granted I am not totally satisfied with stuff. I felt Armstrong could have answered stuff more because with the way she ended it I have more questions then answers but I recognize this is a first book so I'm banking on the fact that stuff will be answered in later books.
But for the most part this is Armstrongs usual strong characters, good writing, and interesting plots. Can't wait for the rest of this trilogy!
WHO SHOULD READ: Women of the Otherworld fans, Darkest Powers Trilogy fans, Mercy Thompson fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five paw tattoos

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Book Review: Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell

TITLE: Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell
AUTHOR: Susanna Clarke
GENRE: Historical fantasy
PREMISE: In a world where magic is discussed but not practiced Mr. Norrell becomes a radical along with Jonathan Strange.
MY REVIEW: Okay here's the thing. I do think this is a good book. It's well written in the style of Gaiman/Pratchett, it's creative, funny at times, and has detailed world building. HOWEVER it's also REALLY SLOW.
Like painfully slow. I've never been so bored by a fantasy book in my life and I hated that because otherwise I loved everything about this but I can't give it higher marks because it just got too wrapped up in details and not enough in plot and character growth and oh yeah, making things entertaining. All the good writing in the world doesn't help you if your book is dull as rocks. Which sadly this book kind of was. There were literally ten/fifteen chapters where nothing happened.
I wish this author well in the future because I do find her writing good and creative she just needs to make her stuff more entertaining and engaging.
WHO SHOULD READ: patient readers, fans of Gaiman/Pratchett, historical fantasy fans
MY RATING: Three and a half out of Five magic books

Sunday, September 25, 2011

In My Mailbox (56)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren that tells people what new books we recieved over the week. All the links in this post go to the books Amazon page if you want more info.

From the library:
The Last Little Blue Envelope by Maureen Johnson-Read 13 Little Blue Envelopes and I'm very curious about what was in the last one. Hopefully it'a worth all that drama in the first book.
The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell-I read Shadowed Summer last year and loved it and having her do historical paranormal romance gives me a major happy.
Dark Mirror by M.J. Putney-I've heard next to nothing about this new series but it sounds right up my alley: magical outcasts in historical setting. I must say I'm loving this influx of historical fantasy books. Keep it up YA! Please be a new trend.
Steel by Carrie Vaughn-I really like Vaughns adult series Kitty and this one sounds so awesome: fencing girl gets sent back in time and becomes a pirate. I'm in.

That's it for me. Sorry this is so late, I had to work all day.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Book Review: A Game of Thrones

TITLE: A Game of Thrones
Book 1 in the Song of Fire and Ice series
AUTHOR: George R. R. Martin
GENRE: fantasy, drama, adventure,
PREMISE: In a land where summers and winters can last for years a deadly game of throne politics is being played. The Stark family is in the thick of it.
MY REVIEW: This probably comes as no surprise to any regular readers of this blog. I loved the hell out of this book. It has everything I love: fascinating complex characters, court intrigue, fantastic world building, well paced plotting, no sappy love triangles, suspense, adventure, and it's even written well! Granted, the style is a bit bland and if you like your main characters full of moral fiber this definitely isn't for you. Even the most noble of the bunch cheated on his wife.
But other then those very minor issues this is a definite must read series. I don't care if you're intimidated by big books or don't like fantasy or whatever excuse you have for not picking it up yet. Read it. Now. I'll wait.
I also highly rec the TV show from HBO which was nominated (but of course virtually ignored because it's genre) for Emmys. It's a good adaptation and this is from someone who is very picky about movie/book adaptations (you would not believe how nervous I am about the Hunger Games movies. The teaser has made me hopeful though). Highly rec this book. Only thing that makes me sad is that I can't get a Direwolf because they aren't real :(
WHO SHOULD READ: Anyone inclined to read it
MY RATING: Five out of Five Stark family flags (which are black because I'm in mourning for Ned Stark)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Book Review: Silver Borne

TITLE: Silver Borne
Book 5 in the Mercy Thompson series
AUTHOR: Patricia Briggs
GENRE: Urban fantasy, shifters, faeries, vampires
PREMISE: Mercy deals with life as Adam's consort.
MY REVIEW: This series is one that started out strong for me but with these more recent books have sort of lost their sparkle. I genuinely like Mercy and I appreciate the books but honest I haven't seen much point to them lately. Especially this one I just read.
Literally nothing really happens. There's a pack squabble. Something about a book and that's pretty much it. So I have nothing new to add that I haven't said in my recent reviews of the Mercy books. Yes, the covers still irritate me despite the pretty art. I'll be reading the next one only because that's the most recent and I'm too invested to stop now but really Briggs needs to step it up a notch if she wants me to read this in the future. If River Marked doesn't deliver then I'm done with this series and won't bother with the new ones.
WHO SHOULD READ: fans of the first 4 Mercy books, Briggs fans, Kelley Armstrong fans
MY RATING: Three and a half out of Five broken cars

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Book Review: From Bad to Cursed

TITLE: From Bad to Cursed
Book 2 in the Bad Girls Don't Die series
AUTHOR: Katie Alender
CATEGORY: Young adult
GENRE: horror, paranormal
PREMISE: When her sister joins a club that shoots to popularity Alexis goes undercover because she suspects the girls are asking for a little paranormal help.
MY REVIEW: Bad Girls Don't Die was a recent pleasant surprise for me that I found at the library. I really don't know why this series isn't more popular. My only explanation is there's no love triangle or romantic drama.
But I personally really dig this series. It's got decent writing, decent characters, and it's very old school horror that's reminiscent of R. L. Stines Fear Street series which was one of my favorites growing up. The author effectively uses horror to make commentary on things like the pressure girls put on each other, peer pressure, toxic friendships, etc.
Granted it's a wee bit slow and again, some may find the lack of romance boring. But I really like this series and I hope there's another book after the way the author left it.
WHO SHOULD READ: Stephan King fans, R.L.Stine fans, horror fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five singed spell books

Monday, September 19, 2011

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (1)

I decided I would try to do this meme and see how it goes. This is a weekly meme hosted over at Book Journey that tells people what we're reading over the week. All the links in this post go the book's Amazon page if you want more info.

I'm Currently reading:
A Song of Fire and Ice Book 1: A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin.-Currently 600 pages or so in and I hope to wrap it up this week. (adult)
Mercy Thompson Book 5: Silver Borne by Patricia Briggs-I'm hoping to get caught up with this series this year. After this one more book to go! (adult)

Planned for the rest of the week:
Darkness Rising Book 1: The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong-A spin-off of Darkest Powers which is a spin-off of Women of the Otherworld. I love this universe that Armstrong has created and always look forward to reading them.
Heroes of Olympus Book 1: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan-I'm still a bit new to Percy Jackson. When this book came out I was only on book 3. So I'm hoping to get completely caught up with the books in time for Son of Neptune.
A Long Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan-A 2011 Debut from August that looks like a dystopian retelling of Sleeping Beauty.

That's it for me this week.

Planned reviews for this week: Magic Slays by Ilona Andrews (already done), Bad Girls Don't Die Book 2: From Bad to Cursed by Katie Alender, Silver Borne by Patricia Briggs, Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin and if I can finally get it done Dr. Strange and Mr. Norrell by Suzanne Clarke.

TITLE: Magic Slays
Book 5 in the Kate Daniels series
AUTHOR: Ilona Andrews
GENRE: Urban fantasy
PREMISE: Kate deals with running her own business as well as being consort to Curran.
MY REVIEW: I was a bit worried after the last book ended. While I was thrilled Curran and Kate finally got together I was worried that it would lessen the books. There has been a long tradition of books/TV series getting stale once the couple everyone roots for gets together and I was afraid this would happen to the Kate Daniels series. Or that Kate would lose her independance and fiestyness now that she got her man (another long tradition in these things).
But I needed not to worry. This series is just as entertaining even though Curran and Kate are together. Kate is still herself and thus she and Curran have frequent arguements. The two don't sit there and coo at each other constantly because that's not their style. They still have vastly entertaining arguements, Kate still has her independance and is a strong female and there's still action and mysterys to solve. So no worries guys, the Kate Daniels series is still kick ass.
Granted I do think this one was a wee bit of a filler book on the way to a much bigger book coming (I think this because of the ending) but all in all still a very fun and entertaining urban fantasy series.
WHO SHOULD READ: those that have read the first four books, Kelley Armstrong fans, Patricia Briggs fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five rifle guns

Sunday, September 18, 2011

In My Mailbox (55)

Sorry for lack of updates this week. I've been busy getting through A Game of Thrones (spoiler alert for the review: I frakkin love it so expect much gushing) and I've just been neglecting blogging in general this week. I'm going to try to be better this week, especially on Tumblr as it's what I call big premiere week with new seasons starting (will be watching Castle, Dancing w/the Stars, Ringer, Glee, Body of Proof, Modern Family, The Middle, Big Bang Theory, and assuming they're good: Pan Am and Terra Nova, and maybe Charlies Angels and Secret Circle for anyone interested in what's on my radar). Now, onto the part you all actually care about.

This is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren that tells people what new books we've gotten over the week. All the links go to the books amazon page if you want more info.

Downloaded to Kindle:
Chaos Walking Series Book 1: The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness-I've heard so many good things so I'm pretty excited about this. It's currently 2.99 on the Kindle because they're having a massive sale that has some really good YA books in there. Go check it out!

The Talisman series Book 1: The Emerald Talisman by Brenda Pandos-Just downloading because it's free. Judging from the description this is another Twilight look-alike but I could be wrong so who knows?

From the Library:
Darkness Rising Trilogy Book 1: The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong-Love the Darkest Powers Trilogy and pretty much all Armstrong books so I'm looking forward to this one. I was going to buy it but it looks like I'll have to wait awhile so I checked it out instead and I'll buy it later.

Heroes of Olympus Book 1: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan-Finally getting around to this one because I want to be caught up in time for the Son of Neptune release. Then I need to read Throne of Fire so I'm all caught up on the Riordan books.

A Long Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan-Sleeping Beauty retelling done dystopian style. Why didn't I think of that? Haven't heard much about this one, I hope it's not a copy of Across the Universe which it sounds like.

That's it for me. What did you get in your mailbox?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Book Review: Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder

TITLE: Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder
Book 1 in the Hannah Swensen Mystery series
AUTHOR: Joanna Fluke
GENRE: mystery
PREMISE: A pastry store owner goes on the case when her delivery man is shot.
MY REVIEW: I honestly don't really have much to say about this series. It's a cozy mystery so all the archtypes are there: shop keeper somehow manages to solve a mystery that cops can't, unlucky in love but manages to snag at least two possible love interests by the end, family who doesn't understand her and why she doesn't find a man, owns a cat, etc. etc.
Writing was passable, mystery was sort of blah, and it all makes for a pretty forgettable and average cozy mystery series. There are currently sixteen books in this series and I suspect I could pick up the most recent one and find that none of the characters have hugely changed in any way and I wouldn't be lost. Worth a check out from the library if you're in the mood for a quick mystery that you don't have to concentrate too much on. Just be warned, it'll make you crave cookies.
WHO SHOULD READ: cozy mystery fans
MY RATING: Three out of Five cookies.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

In My Mailbox (54)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi over The Story Siren that tells people what new books we've gotten over the week. All the links in this go to the book's Amazon page if you want more info.

Downloaded to Kindle:
Miss Marple Book 1: The Murder at the Vicarage by Agatha Christie-Can you believe I've never read Christie before even though I love all the Perot and Marple tv stuff? This is me trying to rectify that mistake.
Bright Young Things Book 1 by Anna Godbersen-I'll be honest I'm not sure when I'll get to this because honestly I'm not a huge fan of Luxe which to me was basically Gossip Girl with period dresses and a overly glamourized version of that time period. From the sound of it, this series is going to be more of the same just with Flappers instead. I'm giving it a shot because it's free though.

From the Library:
Bad Girls Don't Die Book 2: From Bad to Cursed by Katie Alender-Bad Girls Don't Die was a recent pleasant surprise for me so I'm eager to read the sequel that recently came out.
Kate Daniels Book 5: Magic Slays by Ilona Andrews-Finally getting around to this one which I've been dying to read ever since I finished up Book 4.
Mercy Thompson Book 5: Silver Borne by Patricia Briggs-I'm trying to wrap up the Mercy Thompson Series. After this I just have River Marked and I'm all caught up with this series which was a book goal of mine this year so yay.

That's all for me this week. What did you get in your mailbox?

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Book Review: Die For Me

TITLE: Die For Me
Book 1 in the Revenants series
AUTHOR: Amy Plum
CATEGORY: Young adult
GENRE: paranormal, romance
PREMISE: A girl falls in love with a guy in Paris only to learn that he's a revenant-someone who dies and comes back to life.
MY REVIEW: I had no idea what to expect from this book. It hasn't been a huge one on the bloggersphere. And I certainly see why because honestly it's pretty average. The whole girl meets supernatural guy thing has been done to death and this did not do anything hugely creative with it. But nor did it totally flop either.
As usual the romance was blah and slightly overdramatic. What saves this book from being a total snore is the interesting dynamics in Vincent's group and the idea of the Revenants which was actually rather creative. I also liked that the author did not ignore the issues in the relationship even though in the end she and Vincent were still okay of course.
So I say it's a decent first effort. Writer needs to work a bit on prose and cheesy dialogue but I am sort of interested in seeing where this goes. The next book comes out next year.
WHO SHOULD READ: Twilight fans, romance fans
MY RATING: Three and a half out of Five paris cafes

Friday, September 9, 2011

Book Review: Starcrossed

TITLE: Starcrossed
Book 1 in the new Starcrossed series
AUTHOR: Josephine Angelini
CATEGORY: Young adult
GENRE: mythology, romance, urban fantasy, drama
PREMISE: Helen finds out she's descended from the greek gods and is cursed to play out the greek tragedies like all the ones descended from the gods.
MY REVIEW: Okay, I admit it. I did not really expect much from this book. I figured it would be Twilight but with mythology based on the summary given so I wasn't totally eager to run out and buy it. But you guys, this is a actually GOOD. Okay, the romance is kind of cheesy (up until the revelation at the end then I found it slightly more interesting), it somewhat drags in the middle, and is guilty of occasionally cheesy dialogue.
But for the most part the writing is pretty decent, the characters are interesting and actually have personalities (I LOVE Claire). Even better is that it's creative! The author does follow mythology but like the Percy Jackson books she puts her own spin on things in a as believeable can be way and it's really interesting how she does it too. I love that she's not afraid to be as violent or dark as the greek myths either. No sugar coating the gods here or trying to stick christian ideals into it (yes, I'm looking at you Goddess Test book).
Possibly this is one of my favorite debuts of the year along with Clarity by Kim Harrington. I can't wait to see where the author takes this. Sadly the next book doesn't come out till next year.
WHO SHOULD READ: greek mythology fans, Twilight fans, Percy Jackson fans
MY RATING: Four and out of Five greek gods

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Book Review: Matched

TITLE: Matched
Book 1 in the Matched Trilogy
AUTHOR: Ally Condie
CATEGORY: Young adult
GENRE: Dystopian, romance
SHORT PREMISE: A girl lives in a world where everything including who you marry is decided for you.
MY REVIEW: Okay, I liked Matched a lot, I really did. But during reading I suffered from what I have decided to call Over Hype Syndrome. What is Over Hype Syndrome you ask? It's what I've decided to call what happens when I read a book that has been hyped a lot. When a book gets hyped a lot I can't help it: I get high expectations sometimes too high such as the case with Matched. Because I get high expectations it is thus inevitable that the book fails to meet those expectations and I start to notice big gaping problems with the book that I otherwise might have been able to oeverlook in a normal book that wasn't so over hyped. I suppose this is the downside to being a book blogger as opposed to someone who is not so in the know of what's hot.
Because of the hype I noticed plot holes because I was expecting it to be perfect. No book is perfect and Matched isn't. It spends way too much time on the romance angle when I think it would have been better to focus on this really interesting world that Condie created. I personally found the love part to be the most obvious and least interesting thing in the book so I was frusterated when I got an interesting little morsal about the world but then quickly would get back to "oh, is Ky the one?!" To some extent the revalations at the end did explain the focus but at the same time I felt she could have focused on the more interesting parts of the world. I also found the shift of Cassie going "The Society protects us" to "I hate the Society" to be REALLY abrupt and sudden and I didn't understand how she got to that point when a chapter ago she was perfectly happy living under the Society's rule. Plus to be quite honest large parts of this were dull because it focused so much on the obvious and uninteresting romance.
But it was also decently written. It makes you think. I was really interested in this world that Condie created even if I didn't understand everything (such as why people let the Society tell them what to do. I understood it in Delirium because they were essentially numbing people's emotions and thus numbing their free will and it was clear that a lot of brain washing/conditioning was going on as well. That wasn't happening so much here and it was clear not as many people were happy or content with the way things were). Also some of those revelations at the end...ouch. Plus I think this is leading into a much bigger story and we haven't gotten the entire picture yet.
So I give Matched a lot of leeway because I recognize that the over hype gave me way too high expectations and because this is the first book. But I have to say I expect a lot more to actually happen in the second one, like I don't know, something OTHER then "is Ky the one for me?" How about a rebellion because it's clear people aren't happy. Also more on that war that you briefly mentioned in one page would be nice. So I'm giving a higher rating then I would normally with the expectation that the next book will be better and with far more interesting stuff going on. I do think this book is good and recomend it but I was expecting a lot better but again, I think that was due to the over hype. The second book Crossed comes out in October.
WHO SHOULD READ: dystopian fans, Twilight fans, Wither fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five silk dresses

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

My Top Tens (9)

My Top Ten Ghost books (in no particular order)

1)The Mediator series by Meg Cabot-This is the series that made me a Cabot fan. In this, Suze is a Mediator, a girl who can see the dead who sadly won't leave her the hell alone. Even worse is there's a slightly cute male ghost in her room! But Suze has a calling and it's time she faced it...

2)The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman-My first Gaiman book that I read and I'm still fond of it. It won a Newberry and all sorts of awards and for good reason. This one is about a boy who is raised by a family of ghosts in a graveyard after his parents are murdered.

3)The Gilda Joyce series by Jennifer Allison-Okay technically ghosts haven't made much of an appearance in these books yet but if they do, Gilda will find them because she's a investigater of all paranormal activity. To bad, no one takes her seriously.

4)Darkest Powers Trilogy by Kelley Armstrong-This is a bit of a cheat but ghosts do make a occasional appearance in this because the main character Chloe is a necromancer and can raise/see the dead.

5)The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting-Okay so it's more echoes of the dead that Violet sees but I say it still counts.

6)Bad Girls Don't Die by Katie Alender-A spooky story about ghost possession. One of my pleasant surprises this year. A ghost possesses a teen girl's sister and she does what she can to get her sister back.

7)Ruined by Paula Morris-In this little known YA book a girl goes down to New Orleans and meets the ghost of a slave girl and discovers dangerous family secrets...

8)Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready-In a world where everyone can see ghosts but few can actually communicate with them a girl deals with the ghost of her ex-boyfriend who won't let her move on.

9)Deception by Lee Nichols-In this one a girl can see ghosts and discovers it's a family trait.

10)The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde-In this classic short story a family inherits a mansion but discovers that it comes with a cranky old ghost who doesn't like the new tennants at all. One of my favorites of Oscar Wildes.

Next week: favorite relationships that don't suck.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Book Review: A Touch Mortal

TITLE: A Touch Mortal
AUTHOR: Leah Clifford
GENRE: angels, drama, romance
SHORT PREMISE: A girl becomes an angel
MY REVIEW: Eden has been depressed for a while now but she meets a boy and things start looking up. But then the boy dies and she commits suicide only to find he's not as dead as she thought.
Okay I do give lots of points to the author for not being afraid to touch dark subjects and being rather creative. However I took a big issue with the way suicide was treated in this book. Namely how it was used as a plot device and then virtually ignored. Um...NO. You do not do that with subjects like suicide authors. You ESPECIALLY do not make it the way that people become "angels" in the first place and then have everyone in their human life somehow conveniently forget they ever existed. On behalf of families and friends of people who have commited suicide I find this very offensive. Also read your bible mythology if you're going to do books about angels. I'll give you a hint: people who commit suicide? Don't become angels or what passes for angels in this book. I also didn't care for the heroine who was dull and wrapped up in her boyfriend and of course was uber special even among angels. How wrapped up in her boyfriend was she? She commited suicide to begin with because she thought he was dead. Yeah, great role model for teens there.
Yes this was creative and there were some intrigueing things I even give a pass to the writing but the suicide thing bothers me WAY too much to say go out and buy it. Check it out from the library only.
WHO SHOULD READ: Twilight fans, Fallen fans
MY RATING: Two and a half out of Five

Sunday, September 4, 2011

In My Mailbox (53)

This is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi over at the Story Siren that tells people what new books we've gotten over the week. All the links in this post go to the book's info page at Amazon if you want to know more.

Bloodlines Book 1 by Richelle Mead-SQUEE! I don't need to explain why I bought this do I? No? Good.

From the Library:
Starcrossed Book 1 by Josephine Angelini-new one from this year I wanted to read but didn't want to waste money on in case it happened to be bad. Thankfully my library finally got a copy in.
Hannah Swensen series Book 1: Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanna Fluke-Finally figured out which of this series was the first and library finally had the first.
Revenants Book 1: Die For Me by Amy Plum-See explanation for Starcrossed.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Book Review: The Liar Society

TITLE: The Liar Society
AUTHOR: Laura and Lisa Roecker
CATEGORY: Young adult
GENRE: mystery, drama
SHORT PREMISE: A girl investigates her friends murder
MY REVIEW: Kate has been dealing with her friends death not very well. A year later she gets emails from her friend's address that hint her death wasn't an accident like it was believed. Now Kate is on the trail to catch a killer..
There was a nice mystery in here I'll admit. Unfortunately for the authors this storyline has been done rather often and in much better ways. See Veronica Mars (no really see it, awesome show that was canceled way before its time). So I wasn't really seeing anything fresh with this other then the fact that hey, a mystery! We haven't had YA mysteries in ages that wasn't written by Sara Shepard. It was a decent enough read though. The heroine was likeable and relateable, male leads were not horrible but not terribly interesting either, and there was suspense going on. It just sort of dragged though and the ending was rather dissatisfying but I have a feeling that the authors are making this into a series.
All in all a decent first book and I may be looking out for more from these two especially if they do continue this like I think they're going to do. That said, it wasn't fantastic either and again, similarities to Veronica Mars were too big to ignore (but to their credit at least they picked a good show to rip off). I'd say check this out from the library/borrow from a friend.
WHO SHOULD READ: Veronica Mars fans, mystery fans
MY RATING: Three and a half out of Five plaid skirts

Friday, September 2, 2011

Book Review: Witches of East End

TITLE: Witches of East End
Book 1 in the new Beauchamp Family series
AUTHOR: Melissa de la Cruz
GENRE: urban fantasy, witches, romance
SHORT PREMISE: A woman and her two daughters are witches living in a town in New England.
MY REVIEW: The premise pretty much explains the book. I admit I checked this out from the library hesitantly because I was less then enamoured with Blue Bloods. But the idea sounded cool and I figured that maybe Cruz's adult writing would be better then her YA books. Unfortunately it's pretty much more of the same old.
Cruz's writing hasn't improved any, which is odd considering I'm sure she's written at least eight books since Blue Bloods and now. This book had all the problems I had with Blue Bloods: boring until the last eighty or so pages and that wasn't enough to convince me to continue reading. Rather annoyingly token characters. This one had the librarian, the party girl, the mothering one, the gay guy and so forth. None of them really had any depth either and I didn't like the ones that I wasn't utterly bored with. I did like the weaving of the mythology that she had in there. That was somewhat interesting. However it was also a tad confusing. Then I looked online and discovered that apparently this book comes with another book: Witches101 that helps you understand the mythology or whatever. Um...I'm sorry but I shouldn't have to buy a book in order to understand another book. That's ridiculous and obviously a ploy to get more money. I don't appreciate it, Cruz (or publisher, who's ever responsible for that marketing ploy). Also for an adult book, it felt remarkably juvenile. The only real adult thing in it was the sex. If you had gut out that, this could have been a YA book.
This book had some compelling ideas but it wasn't enough to make me care about it and I detest that I needed to buy something else to understand it better. Unless you are a huge Cruz fan. I say skip this one. I think I'm done with Cruz's books, they just don't do anything for me.
WHO SHOULD READ: older Melissa de la Cruz fans, fans of Charmed
MY RATING: Two and a half out of Five witches

Book Review: Heartless

TITLE: Heartless
Book 4 in the Parasol Protectorate series
AUTHOR: Gail Carriger
GENRE: Urban fantasy, mystery
SHORT PREMISE: Alexia juggles being pregnant and finding out who's trying to kill Queen Victoria.
MY REVIEW: In the lastest Parasol Protectorate, Alexia makes arrangements for her baby, goes investigating after a killer, and of course much drama such as her sister insisting on imposing herself on them.
Well, you've all probably figured out what I'm going to say and yes, I'm still in love with this series. No, it's not brillaint but it's so darn fun and works because it doesn't take itself seriously. All the characters are enjoyable, even the detestable Felicity is fun to an extent. The mystery is diverting, it's fun seeing everyone interact and as always, it's pretty hilarious.
The best series ever? No probably not but still very fun and manages to make the urban fantasy genre feel refreshing which at this time is no easy feat.
WHO SHOULD READ: those that read and liked the first 3 books, steampunk fans, urban fantasy fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five victorian hats