Disclaimer: I received this book in exchange for an honest review
I love The Ugly Princess for its message and for having a truly ugly heroine. It’s message, that beauty is only skin deep, came through strong, right from the first page. I especially loved how happy the heroine, Olive, was to be ugly in exchange for her other gifts and how she rejoiced in every new boil and wart.
My first Monstrositea Tea Subscription came this week, including a sample of ceylon pekoe and one of rose petals. I immediately tired one of their suggested recipes (1/2 tsp of ceylon pekoe and 1/2 tsp of rose petals). Brewed for 5 minutes, served black.
Verdict: Not the best cup of tea I’ve ever had. I’m definitely a black tea kind of girl, and this needs more of it.
I’d been hanging out to read Altaica ever since I saw the cover art (yes, I know, I’m shallow) and once I had my hands on it, I devoured it (in the literary sense). The storyline was engaging, the plot kept rolling along and there was never a moment when I was bored or tempted to put the book down.
At the start, I did have a little trouble with the frequent changes in point of view – which sometimes happened three or four times within the same scene – but I quickly became used to the head jumping.
My only quibble was, because there were so many characters to keep up with, I didn’t have the chance to connect with any of them. There were a few scenes (the one with the horses and the river springs to mind – you’ll know it when you read it) that weren’t as heart-stopping as they could have been because I hadn’t REALLY connected to the characters and didn’t care enough about their plight. Maybe if one or two of the minor characters hadn’t had their own point of view, I’d have had more time to get to know the others and those moments would have been as gut wrenching as I know they could have been.
Will I buy the sequel? YES! Despite my quibble, I enjoyed Altaica and I’m looking forward to what Ms Joyce springs on us next.
When a book has a title like First Draft in 30 Days, it can be hard to pass up. If it’s sitting on the shelf at your local library, passing it up is practically impossible, which is why I picked Karen Wiesner’s book.
I have finally, finally, gotten around to reading Fade to Black by Francis Knight (Goodreads link). I borrowed it from the library, and I’ve been so busy (with second drafts and work and, you know, stuff) that I’ve had to renew it twice. Crazy.
So far, apart from a few cases of info-dumping at the start, it’s pretty good.
Where am I at? Page 53. Feels like a steampunk version of The Big Sleep. What’s awesome about it?
The combination of steampunk and magic
A city that just goes up and up and up… or down and down and down, depending upon your point of view.
What’s not-so-awesome? The repetition of various facts. Ms Knight, I get it already!
The Teaser Tuesday bit
This girl had a powerful desire not to go home. Having met her parents, I could sympathise, but a paying job is a paying job, and once I took one on it was hard not to follow through.
I just had to read this book; when I saw it on Kobo.com the want drove me crazy. It drove me so crazy that when I discovered my local library didn’t have a copy but one of its sister libraries did, I drove half an hour to pick it up. Like I said, crazy.
Some sort of cross between The Incredibles and X-men, Goldrush is a classic superhero story where a reluctant hero (Sam) must embrace his special powers in order to save the world. I liked Sam’s reasons for not wanting to use his powers/be a superhero, although, until they were explained in full, those reasons were a little wishy washy. I particularly liked how Lochran made these reasons feel real (when he did explain them fully) by putting names and faces to the people who were injured when Sam first used his power.
Pledged, a paranormal-romance for young adults, makes a good first impression. The cover is well designed, the book trailer impressive and the blurb intriguing, however the story, while good, wasn’t great.
Immediately engaging, with excellent descriptions of place, I felt that the story moved too quickly and that too much happened. Seth and Erin, the protagonists, seemed to spend all of their time jumping from one event to another with little or no time for the reader to take a breath and really get to know them. Perhaps, if the plot hadn’t had so many twists and turns, and so many characters, White could have spent more time involving us in Erin and Seth’s plight. As it is, White has us following three romances (one of which is love/lust triangle, making it doubly complicated) and two father–son relationships, which is too much for a single book. Continue reading →
Bloodhound is the second book in the Beka Cooper series by Tamora Pierce. The story follows Beka, now a first-year Dog (aka police officer), as she and her partner Goodwin track down a group of colemongers (aka counterfeiters). Along the way she picks up a scent hound named Achoo, falls in love and saves the day.
What I liked and didn’t like
Bloodhound is written in a journal style. I haven’t read many books in this style but I find it very difficult to believe that someone could recount their day with as much detail as Beka does. Perhaps Pierce should have ditched the journal idea and just made it first person?
Beka is the many times great grandmother of George Cooper, a prominent character from The Song of the Lioness series. Generally these types of books, in which characters from previous novels make cameo appearances, drive me batty, but given that there’s a few hundred years between this book and the Alanna series, there wasn’t much chance of that happening. Continue reading →
Katana is the second book from American author Cole Gibsen. It blends martial arts with the supernatural in a story reminiscent of films such as The House of Flying Daggers and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, except without the teary ending.
The story follows Raleigh, your average teenage skater-chick (not that I’ve ever known any), as she discovers that she’s a reincarnated samurai with supernatural powers.
What I liked and didn’t like
I’m often disappointed with martial arts books and Katana is no exception. I’m not sure what it is I’m looking for in such a novel, but so far I haven’t found it. It may stem from my own involvement with karate, which I’ve been studying for a few years now, or it may be something else entirely. Continue reading →