Archive for paranormal

Summer Knight by Jim Butcher

Posted in Fiction, Lisa with tags , on July 3, 2008 by Lisa

Also posted at Books. Lists. Life.

Summer Knight is the fourth in the Dresden Files series. After it’s slow take off for me, I think this series is really picking up. It almost seems like the first one or two were warm ups and Butcher has hit his stride. Harry is much less whiny, much less needy, and his need to be a hero has acquired a little common sense.

In this installment we see Harry working for the Winter Queen to find out who killed a rival faerie. The vampires are going to war with the wizard’s White Council because of what happened in book three. Harry has been called before the Council for his part in those events, and if he can’t disarm the coming war with the vampires his career as a wizard is over. Unfortunately, the war between the Faerie is much more imminent and much more dangerous. Like the others, the action is non-stop. I’m pretty sure Harry doesn’t sleep for days.

The recurring characters are mostly good. Murphy isn’t overwhelmingly “you HAVE TO TELL ME, Harry!” The werewolves are back and in good form. Lea is great. Bob isn’t in it nearly enough. The person from Harry’s past was good, but I don’t know that I like the idea of bringing them in just for this storyline. Almost made it TOO easy to make Harry get involved by throwing them into it. Overall, I think this was the best one yet.

On a related note, series books are almost impossibly hard to review. There’s not a lot you can say without giving away the plot to the previous books. I almost hesitate to even mention the plot summary off the back of the book for fear it will spoil something for someone. I find myself reading more and more series books lately, so this is getting to be more of a problem. Off the top of my head, unfinished series waiting on my shelves include: Kim Harrison, Rachel Caine, Laurell Hamilton, J. D. Robb, Charlaine Harris (ok, the last one isn’t on my shelf, yet), and Janet Evanovich (ditto), and the rest of the Dresdens. Soon this blog will turn into: “Yep, it was good.”

TBR Challenge –My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding Edited by P.N. Elrod (2006)

Posted in Fiction, Gina, Short Story, TBR Challenge with tags , , , , , on March 19, 2008 by Gina

I have joined a challenge. Avid Reader over at avidbookreader.com is hosting this TBR Challenge. Here’s what you do.  You read books from your TBR pile and review them on the 3rd Wed of each month.  Everyone who participates each month now until Dec gets entered into a drawing for a $100 gift card.

My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding is a collection of nine short stories.  Short stories aren’t my favorite writing medium.  I find that authors typically try to tell too much story and end up not writing it thoroughly enough.  However, I do like reading collections like this one because it introduces me to new authors and lets me sort of test drive them.  I was ultimately disappointed in the book.  There are nine stories in the collection.  My favorite was Lori Handeland’s Charmed by the Moon.  I really thought that she did a nice job of keeping the number of characters proportioned correctly for the length of the story.  I didn’t feel like the characters got short-changed at all.  I felt there was more story to tell afterwards without feeling like the author just left me hanging.  While I enjoyed Sherrilyn Kenyon’s A Hard Day’s Night-Searcher, I felt that the Rafael and Celena’s story was told in too hasty of a manner.  I fell in love with the characters but their story was finished too completely in this short story.  I enjoy reading Charlaine Harris and Rachel Caine.  Their entries were good but did not live up to expectation.  I had to force myself to finish three of the nine stories.  I won’t recommend this particular book to my friends as it fell short of my high expectations.

Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs

Posted in Fiction, Lisa with tags , , on March 5, 2008 by Lisa

Iron Kissed is the the third book in the Mercedes Thompson series by Patricia Briggs.  Mercy has a lot going on for her in this one- she’s still got Adam and Samuel competing for her attention, she’s waiting for the other shoe to drop from the vampires (see Blood Bound for details there), and her friend and mentor Zee has landed himself in jail. The fae are willing to sacrifice Zee in order to stay out of the spotlight, but Mercy can’t let that happen, of course.

 I love this series.  It’s getting stronger with every entry. I stayed up way past my bedtime to finish because there was just NO WAY I was going to bed without knowing how it ended. I love that Mercy, who is way underpowered in her circles, manages to get the upperhand  MOST of the time.  Each book goes in a slightly different direction and it does not feel repetitious at all. The Samuel- Adam triangle is resolved beautifully. I love the direction she’s gone with Ben. In fact, Ben plays a pivotal role at the end of this one, in a scene that could not have been done better.  There is a Big Event near the end of this one that has drawn some controversy, but I think it was handled beautifully. I cried, a lot. I don’t think it was pregnancy hormones either. If I were still rating books, which it appears I am NOT, I would give it 5 of 5. I can’t wait for the next one.

The Harlequin by Laurell K Hamilton

Posted in Fiction, Gina with tags , , , , , on January 31, 2008 by Gina

The Harlequin is Book 15 in the Anita Blake series.  It reads pretty similar to the last several installments of the series.  So, don’t expect the Anita of Guilty Pleasures or Burnt Offerings.   I don’t mind the sexually intense writing.  I just miss the plots of the earlier books.  I miss the mystery and crime solving.  I am not one to jump ship though.  I tend to stay true to my favorite characters and I do so love Anita and Jean Claude.  So, I will keep reading the series until Ms. Hamilton decides to not write any more.  However, I will hope with each one that she goes back to the butt-kicking, crime-solving Anita of the first handful of books.  With all that being said, I love Jean-Claude and want more of him that we have gotten in these last couple books.  I truly miss the intimate relational moments that he and Anita had in the beginning of their love affair.  I think that Jean Claude gets pushed aside too much during the fury of Anita’s many lovers.   I absolutely love Edward and am glad to see him back in the fray.  I was terribly disappointed in the direction Ms. Hamilton took Raphael, the RatKing.  I was impressed with the scenes at the end in Malcolm’s church.  I thought the part with Richard says it all and I am glad that it happened that way. (Don’t want to spoil the book for all those who haven’t read it yet.)   I thought there was a major plot point that was left hanging in regards to Mommie Dearest and the fourth mark.  All in all I would say it is pretty much the same as the last three or four books.