Midu Reads

 

http://phollo.me/miduhadi 

SPOILER ALERT!

Review: The Sweet Far Thing — Long-Winded but Life-Like!

— feeling confused
The Sweet Far Thing - Libba Bray

 

Hmmm… I came across an article that mentioned the magic in this series was actually a metaphor for girls coming into their own powers. Whether the author intended it to be taken that way or not, I found the book less random when I read with that in mind. Although, whenever the thought slipped my mind, I kept asking why after each scene! There is a certain randomness to it all that I didn’t like.

It might be that I was never able to connect with the characters that made me feel this way. The fact is that the protagonists were written to act their age and not as noble versions of themselves. So, they didn’t just use their powers for the greater good. They were selfish and materialistic, which is how we are most of the time. They shirked their responsibilities and delayed taking difficult decisions for as long as they could. Again, a very human thing to do. 

Or, it could be because the main character was a headstrong girl who didn’t want to believe what was right in front of her eyes. We all do that, so why did it bother me so much to read about it?

What I did love were the parts when the MC decided to set things right and gave her stuffy brother a piece of her mind. 

To sum up, I didn’t like this book because it felt too real. Lol

SPOILER ALERT!

Review: Be Still My Vampire Heart — Funny and Entertaining!

— feeling big smile
Be Still My Vampire Heart - Kerrelyn Sparks

 

The best thing about all the books from this series — the ones that I have read so far — is that they don’t take themselves too seriously! They know they are silly and at times, you can even see the characters laughing at themselves or the silliness of the situation they are faced with. These books will make you laugh when you need a light-hearted read. 

Another thing I like about these books is that while the male lead might do his best to be all caveman and overprotective, their female counterparts don’t let that stop them. In this book, the woman is a slayer and human, unlike the vampires she is hunting. The guy, a vampire, tries to order her away from her slaying, but she is having none of it. In the end, he tries to be there for her when she needs him. Smart guy! 

SPOILER ALERT!

Review: Demon Hunting in a Dive Bar — Funny and Refreshing!

Demon Hunting in a Dive Bar - Lexi George

 

Another one of my feel-good series. The Southern ladies in these books speak their mind and make their own choices. The series is more PNR than UF, but I don’t mind because it makes me laugh. 

A quote from the book:

 

“Zombies eat brains, don’t they?”
“I’m a vegetarian.”


 

Oh, and I found a reference to THHGTTG in this one:


“Don’t panic and carry a towel.”


And several to Lord of the Rings since the male lead gives a ring that the woman he’s seeing can use to summon him. Lol

SPOILER ALERT!

Review: Just Another Judgment Day — Still Problematic and Very Filler-y!

Just Another Judgement Day - Simon R. Green

 

Okay, is it just me or is this a filler book? While it was full of the usual craziness that is a part of this series, I felt that the story hadn’t even kicked off when it ended! 

Another issue I had with this instalment was with the main character’s love interest. She is an abuse survivor and the author is building their relationship gradually. The woman finds human contact difficult to bear, and John isn’t rushing her or pushing her in any way. I love that! But what I don’t like is that aside from this fact and that the woman is a badass — possibly insane too — we still don’t know much about her. Maybe develop her character a bit?

Nonetheless, books like these satisfy my craving for when I have recently given up on watching Supernatural for the 100th time. Or when I have finished the season of The Umbrella Academy — even after watching one episode a day to stretch it for as long as I could have — and can’t be bothered to find a new show to watch.

SPOILER ALERT!

The Curse of Tenth Grave — Sigh!

The Curse of Tenth Grave - Darynda Jones

 

As you know, I have already railed about the many issues that I find in the books in this series. But I have to see it to the end, so I keep plodding on. I won’t be rehashing those problems because I believe if a reader finds a book problematic, they should just stop reading it. Reading the subsequent books in the same series and then whining about them doesn’t make sense. 

That’s why I will confine my ramblings to this book — or try to. The thing with the protagonist is that she is supposed to be a god whose memories have been wiped. So, she doesn’t know how powerful she is or even what powers she has. Okay, sounds logical. What doesn’t make sense is that she spent the whole book claiming she is in over her head and not knowing if she could trust her husband — I’ll come back to this one later. But as soon as the bad guys arrive, she instinctively knows what to do? Not buy-able at all.

Her husband is Satan’s progeny in a very convoluted way. He has been paying child support for a kid that his wife knew nothing about. He is also one of the unholy trinity of demons, which means his wife is unsure how evil is in there in him. He won’t tell her where he is hiding their daughter, presumably for their safety. Yet she continues to trust him and his unhealthy obsession for her that he mistakenly calls love. I don’t get it!

Finally, and this one will go off-track because it is about the series and not just this book, the author keeps on tacking mystery after mystery and leaving us with cliffhangers. When does it stop and get simpler? Oh, after three more books? Okay, I can work with that.

The humor and Cookie were the real superstars, as usual.

SPOILER ALERT!

Review of City of Night — I liked this book more than its predecessor. Yaay!

City of Night (Dean Koontz's Frankenstein, #2) - John Bedford Lloyd, Ed Gorman, Dean Koontz

 

This is the second book in this series that I began while doing Project Frankenstein. One of the quibbles that I complained about while I read the first one remains an issue in this one: Victor is everything bad. He was pals with Hitler and Stalin and such. But what exactly made him this way? It is hinted that when his first creation killed Victor’s wife, things started snowballing. But this deeply rooted hate of all things human couldn’t have sprung from that source. So far, the reason for Victor’s evil nature remains a mystery to me.

Maddison and Conor the two cops that we met in this last book are back in this one. They are funny and are slowly being fleshed out, so they look more human. 

Some quotes that I marked while reading:
Like all utopians, he (Victor Frankenstein) preferred obedience to independent thought.
I mean wow, sum up all the dystopian novels in one sentence, why don’t ya!

And I learned a few new words:



 

 

SPOILER ALERT!

Review of The Bitter Kingdom — Not Bad I'd Say!

The Bitter Kingdom - Rae Carson

 

Another series that I had embroiled myself into came to a conclusion with this book. Here are some things I have loved about them both, i.e., the book and the series:

Elisa is a teenage character who doesn’t wait for the action to come to her. She doesn’t whine about being misunderstood or why her crush doesn’t love her — mostly because he does but that’s majorly due to who she is as a person and not because of how pretty she is. Their relationship is one built on mutual trust and respect, which was refreshing to see in a YA novel. She cares about the others and interacts in a positive way with other female characters. She evolves just like a real person would over the course of the trilogy. When she loses what made her special, i.e., the godstone, she realizes it wasn’t the jewel but her own strength that made everything possible. Therefore, she keeps on being her awesome self!

Now here is what I didn’t like:

The godtsone that Elisa was born with is why she is directly connected to god. It is also why wars are being fought and she remains a target in all three books. Yet the circumstances that led to the stone’s falling out were highly anticlimactic and even random. What was thatabout? Why design a whole series around a concept if it didn’t even matter in the end?

Another relatively minor quibble was the reason why her sister treated Elisa like shit all their lives wouldn’t stand up to close scrutiny. When viewed in its light, Elisa’s forgiveness didn’t really make sense either.

SPOILER ALERT!

Unbroken by Rachel Caine — A Great End to a Good Series

Unbroken - Rachel Caine

 

When certain series come to an end, they leave their readers unsatisfied or even disappointed. I feared it would be so with this one for several reasons. One, these books are actually a spin-off of the Weather Wardens series. I loved reading about Jo’s adventures and constantly going up against foes way bigger than she was and coming out bruised and beaten but a victor. Would I even like someone else playing the main part within the same universe? I hated her at first just as I was meant to. She was cold and inhuman. But good things or rather very bad things happened to her to change that.

Except for her love interest, David, we are taught to fear the Djinns in the prequel series. That brings me to the next reason for my misgivings: the protagonist in this one used to be a Djinn but was punished by the head honcho of Djinns when he turned her into a human before exiling her. But, the author takes three books to humanize the heroine’s character. It felt totally practical. 

Thirdly, I would again have to say goodbye to the world of Weather Wardens when this series ended. And I did, but I also felt a sense of completion. So, that’s good!

About the last book itself, Ms. Caine doesn’t play shy when it comes to tragedies changing people forever. One of the main characters in this one was a little kid who was kidnapped and tortured by a power-hungry megalomaniac Djinn. When she is returned to her family, she isn’t shown to magically recover from all that has befallen her. She remains on the brink of becoming an unfeeling creature and her family keeps doing their best to bring her back. I liked the authenticity in that.

Finally, the ending was too and they lived happily ever after for me. While I wanted the characters to be happy, I didn’t want it to be so perfect. But mostly, the journey was a positive one. Can’t wait to see what Ms. Caine does next!

Review of Lucifer, Volume 1: Cold Heaven – Underwhelming!

— feeling misdoubt
Lucifer, Vol. 1 - Holly Black

 

I am supposed to have read the original arc, which should make me hate this one. To many readers who had read it, this one seemed unnecessary to say the least. Luckily, I hadn’t and I liked the TV series of the same name. So, I find it okayish. 

I’m reading the next volume to see where it all goes. Maybe it will impress me more? I hope so!

 

 

My story recently got published. Yaay me!

SPOILER ALERT!

December 2018 — A Wrap-Up

 

 

After I had done the yearly overview, I realized I had yet to review the books I read in December. Granted, not much reading was done, but here they are:

42392437 These comics aren’t anything out of the ordinary but I do love the colorful graphics in them. Plus, people are being taken over by plants, and there is a conspiracy to be uncovered. All of this is happening in a post-apocalyptic setting. So, I am sticking to the series for now.

 

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I really wanted to love this one. I’m even collecting all the books in the series. But with all the amazing UF novels that I’ve already read, this one paled in comparison. Even if there hadn’t been so many issues with the characters like the protagonist was supposed to be a witch. But all she did was mess up and whine. Then there was her partner, a vampire. She was supposed to be on a no-blood diet. However, every time the protag even breathed, the vamp would be on her throat. They were aided by a pixie whom they treated like dirt even when he regularly risked his life for them. Finally, a new character was introduced in a highly suspect manner who made the worst decision ever. But the protag just went and trusted him.

 

Aside from those issues, the plot wasn’t making much sense either. I will be reading the next one in the series to see if things get better though.

 

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I’m still in the process of collecting all the books from this series. Just got this one last month and was going over it all excited. Suddenly, I found myself flipping its pages. Within no time, I had read the whole book! That is the magic of the Lemony Snicket books. They are funny but profound, and perfect reads for kids and adults alike. 
I do have a kind of project in mind for this series. Let’s see when I can make it happen!

 

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The first time I came across this series was a long time ago. From the joke cracked in it about teenage vampires (can’t recall if they were of the sparkly variety or not), I was sold. While I am still collecting all the books in this series. I thought it was time that I started reading the ones I had managed to snag. This is the second book in the series and it didn’t disappoint. Fowl is still his serious precocious but brilliant self and you know my love for Flavia. Butler can still kick ass and will do anything to keep his charge safe. I am also becoming fond of the fairy characters, including the butt-flap-opening farting Mulch. Will keep devouring book after book now that I have begun!

 

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I couldn’t make myself wait, so I started this one almost immediately. We begin to see changes in Fowl’s personality. The kid who has always been smarter than other kids his own age has spent his life being alienated. Now, he realizes the importance of friendship and connecting with others, even his parents! 

 

Holly is a strong female character who doesn’t shy away from danger, speaking her mind, or doing the right thing.


I was sad when I thought Butler would be out of commission now that he had aged 15 years. But he isn’t going to give up without a fight, is he? Typical Butler!

 

Root and Foaly bicker all the time, but they are fun to read about. 


P.S. I don’t think I can stop reading these books until I have read em all now.

 

This was what I read in December. How did you do?

 
SPOILER ALERT!

Looking Back at 2018

 

Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on January 2, 2019.

 

Another year has come to an end. If you ask me, there is NO way that 2018 had 365 days. At least, that’s not how I felt! Even though time passed quickly, I did manage to read more than twice the books I had planned reading.

 

Okay, so this is how this review is going to go. I have separated this year’s books into several categories. Shall we?

 

 

Old Favorites

 

    


Cheyenne Clark Series by David Wellington

Undead Series by MaryJanice Davidson

Artemis Fowl Series by Eoin Colfer

The Hathaways Series by Lisa Kleypas

Discworld Series by Terry Pratchett

Charley Davidson Series by Darynda Jones

Milkweed Triptych Series by Ian Tregillis 
Walker Papers Series by C.E.Murphy

A Witchcraft Mystery Series by Juliet Blackwell

Flavia de Luce Series by Alan Bradley

Vlad Taltos Series by Steven Brust
Thursday Next Series by Jasper Fforde

Darko Dawson by Kwei QuarteyThe Dinosaur Lords by Victor Milán

The Forever War Series by Joe Haldeman
Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs

A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket 
Hidden Legacy Series by Ilona Andrews

 

Special Mentions

 

These are books from series that have been consistently good to read for me. How are they different from Old Loves you ask? Even Old Loves had installments that were a hit and a miss. These series didn’t!

 

 

Ms. Marvel Series by G. Willow Wilson

Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordan

Everwild by Neal Shusterman

 

New Loves

An Unkindness of Magicians Series by Kat Howard
Karen Memory Series by Elizabeth Bear 

Damned Series by Chuck Palahniuk
Johannes Cabal Series by Jonathan L. Howard

The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells

Leningrad Diptych by Catherynne M. Valente
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

Once Upon a Time Machine Volume 2 by Andrew Carl 
Soulless: The Manga, Vol. 1 by Gail Carriger

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

 

Pleasant Surprises

 

These were books from series that had previously left me unimpressed. I had even considered abandoning them but decided to give them one last try. Yaay! These series just got a whole lot better!

Shards of Hope by Nalini Singh 
Curtsies & Conspiracies by Gail Carriger

The Girl in the Clockwork Collar by Kady Cross

Heart of Steel by Meljean Brook

Shadows Linger by Glen Cook

 

So, I have included the books that I liked in this overview. There were some that obviously weren’t for me, but why dwell on those. Right? Here’s hoping the coming year would be even more fantabulous for all readers and non-readers alike!

 

Happy New Year!

 

SPOILER ALERT!

November 2018 — A Wrap-Up

 

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Cinder by Marissa Meyer

 

Even though I read this book in October, I forgot to include it in that month’s wrap-up. So, reviewing it now. Cinder is the story of Cinderella but one who is half cyborg and works as a mechanic. All the elements you’d expect from such a story are there, i.e., an evil stepmom, a dead dad, and a prince who is smitten with the poor girl.

 

But the same goes for the issues that the original (read Disney) version and most YAs have. For instance, the forging of an instant connection between the prince and Cindy. She is considered expendable and is extremely poor at the beginning of the story. Yet soon she not only attracts royalty, but her blood also becomes the only source that can cure the virus plaguing the country. We also come across completely irredeemable and good-spirited characters, meaning everything is black and white.

 

All that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy this modern twist on an old story because I did, which is why I will be reading the next one.

 

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Johannes Cabal the Necromancer by Jonathan L. Howard

 

The story opens on a man, Johanne Cabal, the Necromancer, striding into hell and demanding to see Satan. Having sold his soul for necromancy, he now wants it back. The reason for that becomes clear only at the end of the book and that too only partially. Satan sets him to achieve a seemingly insurmountable task in return for Cabal’s soul.

As Johannes recruits, recreates, and alienates people during the journey, we meet many quirky characters. The best thing about the book is undoubtedly its sense of humor.

 

Take a look:

“I was cast down from the presence of God himself into this dark, sulphurous pit and condemned to spend eternity here—”

“Have you tried saying sorry?” interrupted Cabal.

“No, I haven’t! I was sent down for a sin of pride. It rather undermines my position if I say ‘sorry’!”

The quote above is an excerpt from the exchange between Cabal and the Devil. The one below is about a crow (one of Satan’s minion) that follows Johannes around when its master can’t spy on him:

It looked at them; first with one eye, then with the other. Then, to show it was a polymath among crows, it went back to the first eye.

Besides laughing out loud, I also learned a few new words. You can view them below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

All in all, I can’t wait to read the next one!

 

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Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente

 

This wasn’t the first book of Ms. Valente that I read. And like that one, this book was a beautiful hot mess. Her prose is almost succulent enough that you can bite into it and yet, in the end, you will be left thinking, What did I just read? 

 

Was it a commentary on the Russian Revolution? Was the book about Russian myths? Was it a coming of age story? Or, was it simply fantasy YA? I’d say there was a bit of everything in it!

 

 

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The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

 

A friend who exclusively reads middle-grade fantasy is crazy about this series. Since her taste in books and mine matches, I was excited to get started with this one.

 

It left me both underwhelmed and pleasantly surprised. The writing is crisp in a way that it immerses you in the scene playing before you. Consider the lines below on how the protag had been raised by her single mother:

Maura had decided sometime
before Blue’s birth that it was barbaric to order children about,
and so Blue had grown up surrounded by imperative question
marks.

I also loved the wry humor, which can be seen clearly in the example below:

Calla had once observed that Maura had no pets because her
principles took too much time to take care of.

What I wasn’t that crazy about was the mystery that the story is based on. I liked the characters and mostly enjoyed the book — even though I caught on to the twist pretty early. But the story failed to excite about the mystery. And there was a lot of random stuff going on. The tree that showed the future, for instance, why was it even there?

 

I’d like to continue with this trilogy though.

 

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My Soul to Keep by Rachel Vincent

 

I always enjoy reading anything by Rachel Vincent. Even though this book is majorly YA-flawed, I still enjoyed it because I am used to her writing style. No, I don’t have anything against YA, but certain things like the heroine failing to see that her bf was the demonic drug supplier can only happen in YA books.

 

Anyway, this series has grown on me and I intend to see it through.

 

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Damned by Chuck Palahniuk

 

Another book set in hell. I had been looking for such books because I had landed on the square for it in book bingo. The Cabal book was enough for it but since I had already done the hard work researching them and because I had liked Fight Club, I went ahead with this one too.

 

Normally, it bugs me when a male author writes a female character who is annoyingly smart or just full of themselves. Like these lines below made me wanna smack the heroine:

Such vocabulary props served as my eye shadow, my breast implants, my physical coordination, my confidence. These words: erudite and insidious and obfuscate, served as my crutches.

And it happened many more times. Most of the time, though, the writing was good enough to rescue the book from abandonment. Consider this sample:

Trickling toenails threaten to become full-fledged avalanches which could bury us alive (alive?) in their talus of prickly keratin.

And this one:

That, I think, is the function of Hell: It’s a place of remembering. Beyond that, the purpose of Hell is not so much to forget the details of our lives as it is to forgive them.

I also learned some new words:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Okay, so I have no clue if the jejunum (part of the small intestine that absorbs nutrients from already digested food particles) has its roots in the word, jejune, or not. But it would be cool if it did, right?

 

As you can see, I didn’t do much reading this month. How did you fare?

SPOILER ALERT!

Reading Anniversaries & First-in-a-Series — August Edition

 
Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on November 23, 2018.

 

 

2018

 

Go here for the books I read in August this year!

 

2017

 

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A Plague of Angels by Sheri S. Tepper

 

My review

 

 

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Raptor Red by Robert T. Bakker

 

My review

 

 

2016

 

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The Unadulterated Cat by Terry Pratchett

 

My review

 

2015

 

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Samurai Jack, Vol. 1 by Jim Zub

 

As fun as the cartoon had been!

 

 

2014

 

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The Gate to Women's Country by Sheri S. Tepper

 

I'm beginning to appreciate Tepper's writing I think. This book started the way most books based on a dichotomous society would start. The women were good for breeding and whoring. The men enlisted in the military and lorded over the women. But the twist at the end took me by surprise! Read my appreciation of her other book here.

 

2013

 

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Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

 

While political strife forms the backdrop in this book, our focus is on one family trying to get through all the chaos in one piece. I loved every bit of this book! This was my first book by Adichie and I can't wait to try the others.

 

 

2012

 

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Coyote Blue by Christopher Moore

 

Irreverent as heck but laugh out loud funny is how I'd describe Moore's humor. In this book, a conman meets The Conman i.e. Coyote, the trickster god. Hilarity ensues!

SPOILER ALERT!

October 2018 — A Wrap-Up

 

Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on November 15, 2018.

 

 

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An Unkindness of Magicians by Kat Howard

 

This book surprised me and in a pleasant way. Having never read anything by Ms. Howard, I didn't really know what to expect. What I discovered was good UF with half decent world-building. It had shades of the movie Now You Can See Me  only the magic in the book wasn't an illusion.

 

We are introduced to the major players almost immediately. They each have their motivations and that was completely okay. The world-building should have been better because as far as I can see, this book is a standalone. Even if it is to be the first in a series, then it would need to be immersive enough for readers to continue with the sequel. I think it mostly does that.

 

 

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The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells

 

Wow! I mean I tried reading The War of the Worlds and failed miserably. If you can make a novel about an alien conquest sound boring, then there isn't much hope that I'd ever like anything you'd write. While playing Book Bingo, I landed on a category that fit this book beautifully. So, I decided to give Mr. Wells another go.

 

I am so glad that I did! Suspense colors the atmosphere in the story and there is a stench of violence waiting to happen. Why don't scientists ever learn? I kept cringing every time the humans faced the monsters (Moreau could give Frankenstein a run for the money)! Some were near misses and some events just foreshadowed the darkness that was to come.

 

The edition I read also came with a summary of H. G. Wells' life history. He had been involved in the formation of League of Nations. Cool!

 

 

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Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill

 

This book had issues similar to that I highlighted in the review of Kat Howard's book. Say, vampires do exist and they decide to come out. Won't there be a political upheaval to makes all other upheavals look silly? Nothing like that happened in this book.

 

Meritt caught my interest because she refused to be grateful for being turned into a bloodsucking parasite. She also clashed with the authorities regularly and I liked that she wasn't ready to give in to her attraction towards the head vampire just yet. Her troubled relationship with her gold-digger and nouveau riche parents cemented her authenticity as a person. As did her bonds with her bff and grandfather. What detracted from the believability factor was how she rebelled against her new life and yet gave up so easily on her old one. What of her dissertation? What about going back to school?

 

What did bug me was the identity of the person having humans killed by her minions. As far as twists go, this one was just all right.

 

Even so, I want to read the next one in the series before I decide if I will continue with the rest.

 

 

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The Dirt on Ninth Grave by Darynda Jones

 

The humor in these books is always a winner. Consider the two quotes below:

 

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But what I liked, even more, was that the series took a break from the disaster it had become. In case, you haven't yet read the last book or my review of it it was horrible. The author dropped a doozy of a deus ex machina on us. Then she left the readers with a huge cliffhanger that took us back to the prehistoric age (not literally)!

Guess what though? The last part did wonders for the book! I could reconnect with Charley without the usual over-the-top complications. The world was still about to end, but that wasn't going to happen just then. Charley did spend the whole book lusting after her husband even if she didn't know who he was. But that is typical behavior for her.

 

I also fell in love with Cookie all over again after reading this book. The woman has a life of her own, a daughter, and a husband. Yet she put everything on hold to come be with an amnesiac Charley. Even though she can't act worth a damn and kept slipping up and calling Charley by her real name. Cookie rocks! 

 

 

Bring on the next book!

 

 

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A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

Another book that I wish had read a long time ago. Now, I don't appreciate it the way it is meant to be lauded. Firstly, since it is by a female author writing epic fantasy. Yaaaaay! Then because the protagonist isn't white and male, but colored and male. Okay, this deserves a smaller yaaay. Even so, it is still a win.

 

What I wasn't a fan of was the writing style. It felt stilted and kept me from devouring the book in my usual way. Of course, the fact that I have read my fill of epic fantasy might have something to do with it. Although, this book wasn't much concerned with the affairs of the world. It focused on a character's solo journey to get rid of the darkness that he had called from another world.

 

So, I'll reserve the final verdict until I have read the next book in the series.

 

 

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Everwild by Neal Shusterman

 

I can never understand how a children's book can scare the pants off me when so many horror novels have failed to do that! Similarly, I survived watching Jessica Jones being mentally — and otherwise — raped by Killgrave repeatedly. And yet, I have to force myself to sit through one episode of A Series of Unfortunate Events!

 

The idea of kids being in control is a very scary one because they can be very cruel. At times, they won't even realize the extent of damage they are leaving on another kid's psyche. The good thing about kids managing their affairs is that they can take highly complicated concepts of morality and simplify them.

 

I had a great time reading this book for both those reasons. Can't wait to read the next one!

 

 

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Dark Crime by Christine Feehan

 

Have mostly given up on this series ever being anything but cheesy, if I ever thought so in the first place. This novella was a good surprise though. Instead of the swooning heroines, we were shown someone who could fight and hold her own. She was also the one who kept the vampires and their minions at bay while hubby went to ground.

 

Yeah, she was forced into the whole Carpathian mating for life ritual by her husband-to-be. And yes, she couldn't live without him as soon as he arrived at the scene. Little improvements, see?

 

 

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Dead Beat by Jim Butcher

 

The humor was on point, as usual. Look below for a crack or two:

 

1

 

 

2

 

The relationship between Harry and his brother is slowly developing. By that, I mean they talked to each other about real stuff, like Thomas being thirsty all the time.

 

Susan was awesome!

 

The rest was pretty much as it always is:

 

Harry was trying to save a woman's life.

 

Harry couldn't hit women, even ones bent on killing him.

 

Harry defeated a threat that he couldn't possibly defeat.

 

Harry saves an adorable character who learns how to stand up for themselves and others.

 

Harry is hit with threats from all directions and lives to tell the tale.

 

 

So, this was my October in reading. How was yours?

SPOILER ALERT!

Reading Anniversaries & First-in-a-Series — July Edition

 

Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on November 3, 2018.

 

2017

20898019

 

Ms. Marvel, Vol. 1: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson

 

This was my first encounter with Kamala Khan and boy did I love what I read! What made her an authentic character were her lifelike issues, including those of being a teenager, a superhero coming into her powers, of trying to find her place in the world, and of being a Muslim American girl. She wanted to eat bacon, for instance, but couldn't because of her religious beliefs. She wanted to be able to just worry about her school, but she couldn't because she was a superhero with a job to do. So far, the series has stayed true to what makes it unique. I hope it does that in the future too.

 

Read my reviews of other volumes here and here.

 

180995

 

Plato and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes by Thomas Cathcart, Daniel Klein

 

If there is one subject that I have always found boring, it is philosophy. That remained the case no matter how hard I tried until, i.e., I found this book. Hilarious and light, it walks you through complicated philosophical concepts like you are out for a walk in the park...or a bar!

 

Complete review here.

 

2015

 

18748058

 

Alex + Ada by Jonathan Luna

 

I hadn't started reading many comics and graphic novels back when I read this series. To my surprise, not only did I like it, but I also connected with the characters. Like most awesome literature, this one is based in a dystopian world. I binged through the whole series before I could pace myself. Hope others will give it a chance too.

 

2014

 

6931246

 

Kraken by China Miéville

 

It isn't that China Miéville's books are full of action or just really good stories. Well, they might be all that too. But if I remember correctly, this one was a collection of very random situations that somehow came together to give us a conclusion. Yet, I didn't want to put the book down even once. It was that good!

 

13480659

 

Helens of Troy by Janine MsCaw

 

** spoiler alert **


What I liked: T
he book was fun- the ladies (all three of them) were crazy and stubborn but they delivered when the occasion called for it. That there were more secrets to unveil- a sequel would be awesome.


What I didn't like: T
he rest of the characters were as fun to read about- Tom, Ryan, poor Stan, and Jacey.

Would have liked a bit more about Jacey's baby- whether the vampire was bluffing and how did he found out about the kid, anyway.

there wasn't any information about how the wraith brothers teamed up with the vampire in the first place. Really fun read- demon nannies, vampire godsons, exorcizing runaway husbands, berserker football players, and ghost dads; the book has it all- & I would love to meet the grandmother-I'm sure she kicks ass too. She won't be on the Devil's hit list otherwise!

17235026

 

The Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

 

** spoiler alert ** 


This is the book to read if you like a little science in your zombie fiction. The author uses a fungal agent as the cause of zombieism. The fungus, ophiocordyceps unilateralis, is real. It infects and zombifies certain ants. 
It even has favorites among the same types of ants!


Not only did I love the sciencey bits, I remember starting that book cold. I hadn’t read any reviews and as a result, the moment when I realized who the little girl could be was delicious! Read this book, if you don’t read any other zombie fiction!

 

2013

 

41804

 

I, Robot by Isaac Asimov

 

I dunno what I can say about this book that hasn't been said about it already. Asimov wrote a definitive book that all future sci-fi robot-based books are inspired by. What do you say about such work?

More reviews of Asimov books here.

 

 

13239822

 

Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson

 

I don't remember much about this book, except that I really liked it. Some of the scenes read like they were from The Exorcist but with a decidedly Mediterranean flavor. Others were simply Aladdin-ish. In short, the book was a lot of fun.

 

 

8442457

 

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

 

Okay, I hate reading popular books at their height of popularity. Dunno why I made an exception for this one, but I am so glad I did! The twist was beautifully done. Ooh, and I loved the movie too.

 

2213661

 

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

 

I don't like everything that I read by Neil Gaiman. But this book is one of my absolute favorites. Whether it was the callousness of the villains who'd harm a baby or the open-heartedness of the people whose hearts had stopped beating, I loved every bit. Weirdly, I found this book to be less dark than Coraline and that one was aimed at kids!

 

Another review here.

 

 

11

 

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

 

Funny as heck and quite spontaneous. Most books in this series seem to be following no discernible plot. That becomes a turn off as you continue with the series. But the humor is good in this one and as long as I didn't binge, it made for an enjoyable read. Funnily enough, I have yet to meet someone who liked both the first book and the movie like I did.

 

5470

 

1984 by George Orwell

 

Another classic. I loved how authentic it felt and how dangerously close the real world teeters to becoming Orwellian. For a slim book, it takes some time to finish because it becomes a bit boring at certain times. My favorite parts were about the new dictionary that was being prepared. To a writer, no word is redundant because they all mean different things — even synonyms. Red isn't scarlet and neither is crimson. Reading about words just being unmade hurt the writer in me. But it has only made me appreciate my vocabulary. So, I am really glad that I read this one.

 

2012

 

13627273

 

Wastes of Space by Darcy Town

 

Wow!
This book had me laughing out loud!
The humor kinda reminded me of the book, Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi.
I enjoyed every second I spent reading this book.
I wanted to hit Danny over the head for being so stubborn and getting Theo killed-nope, didn’t feel sorry for Keto even once!
I started to feel weird and grossed out when I first started liking the Hunters but they came through in the end.
Rake was..clean Rake was almost too much to take and I kept thinking, Poor Ravail, what have you gotten yourself into!
Ravail came a long way from being a scared kid to a woman who could mouth off to Rake!
The last scenes were hilarious– everybody ended up in space.
Can’t wait to read the next book!

 

 

155421

 

Something from the Nightside by Simon R. Green

 

I love the Nightside novels now but back when I just started reading it, it reminded me too much of Harry Dresden books. Almost gave up on them too, but thankfully, I developed this craving to read the next one in the series. These days, I prefer the Nightside to Dresdenverse!

 

More reviews here and here.

 

 

8390526

 

Akhet by H.L. Reasby

 

** spoiler alert ** I received this book from Making Connections for free, in exchange of, an honest review. Get your copy here.

 

I really enjoyed this book for various reasons:
anything that has to do with mythology always attracts me and the author incorporated Egyptian mythology into this story beautifully.
the action begins with the first page and keeps going!
the story kept me interested throughout and it was the right length.
I liked how Nur/Nicole knew some things instinctively while she had to work to get better at others.
Another thing I liked about this book was that it can be read as a stand alone.
Looking forward to reading the next in the series.

 

13538873

 

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

 

A cute book about books. Read it for a bookish challenge and found out that it is a good book to relax with on a lazy day. I'll just say that it bogged down just a bit before the end. But it picked up its pace again quickly.

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Kingdom Come
3 of 5 stars
tagged: graphic-novel, read-in-2015, and 1997
A Mere Formality
4 of 5 stars
tagged: missing-shelf, read-in-2015, shorts, singles, and 2008
Chickenfeed
3 of 5 stars
tagged: premissing, uk-author, 2006, read-in-2015, serial-killers-and-other...
Dark Blood
1 of 5 stars
tagged: missing-shelf, 2014, abuse, read-in-2015, series, and middlers

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