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Search tags: 4-5-stars
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review 2017-06-23 02:48
If Walls Could Talk ★★★★☆
If Walls Could Talk - Juliet Blackwell

The only other cozy mystery series I’ve tried was not very satisfying, so I had low expectations coming into this one. But what a pleasant surprise! The author introduces each character with descriptions that drew a clear picture in my mind and also gave some hint of what was to come. I learned a little history and felt some of the MC’s enthusiasm for her work in restoring historic homes. The whodunnit was not especially difficult to figure out before it was revealed, but the journey to get there was plenty of fun.

 

Previous Updates:

 

6/20/17 6%  http://sheric.booklikes.com/post/1573004/if-walls-could-talk-6

 

6/20/17 15% http://sheric.booklikes.com/post/1573053/if-walls-could-talk-15

 

6/21/17 43%  http://sheric.booklikes.com/post/1573208/if-walls-could-talk-43

 

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review 2017-06-20 12:00
Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare
Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices) - Cassandra Clare

These books make me feel old (not that I'm really that old), but I first started reading Cassandra Clare books 7 years ago. Honestly, if an author has kept me reading their books for that long there has to be something good about their books. I don't know if it's because I'm super sentimental or what, but I love these shadowhunter books.

 

This world always manages to drag me in. It's probably because it has just about all the supernatural creatures you could ever possibly imagine and want all in one and I'm a sucker for supernatural books. Especially well written supernatural books. I'm all for the author's writing, mainly because I actually laugh out loud while reading. Ok maybe it's more of a snicker, but still. I have way more emotions from this book than I've had reading many other books. 

 

 I really enjoyed the whole cast of characters, even if I would get some of them confused. It took me forever to stop getting Ty and Tavvy confused. Tavvy didn't really have any really distinguishing qualities, except for the fact that he was the youngest. Dru and Livvy also weren't that distinguishable, but I didn't really get them mixed up (probably because their names were so different). I wish that those characters were more developed throughout the story. Since they weren't developed it almost felt like there were too many characters, especially for someone that isn't familiar with the series. There were many name drops and guest appearances by characters from other series that would not make sense if the reader hadn't read any of the other books. While I did enjoy seeing some of my old favorite characters, it kind of felt unnecessary. 

 

I did really love the main cast of characters, specifically Julian, Emma, and Mark. Julian is so precious and I loved how fiercely he loves his family. Emma was badass, but also had a soft side and she felt like a real person. Especially since she was dealing with the loss of her parents, while also trying to navigate her feelings. I also really enjoyed Mark's character, but I don't really want to spoil too much, so I'll leave it at that.

 

The romance was something that I enjoyed, but was also frustrated with. As much as I love Emma and Julian, I didn't understand why they couldn't always be truthful with each other. The ending was something that didn't really make a whole lot of sense to me. I feel like they could have worked it out some how and it was unnecessarily painful. I did like the build up of their romance though. It was sweet and it didn't feel like insta love because they had been friends since they were children.  

 

I definitely enjoyed this book. I couldn't put it down most of the time and I really loved being able to return to the shadowhunter world I've loved so much. I'll definitely be going out to get the next one very soon!

 

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review 2017-06-16 17:15
Mile 81 ★★★★☆
Mile 81 - Stephen King,Thomas Sadoski,Edward Herrmann

This is the short story/novella version of every 1950’s Creature Feature B movie, where the teenagers witness everything and frantically try to get help, only to have all the adults dismiss them as crazy kids pulling a prank. Except in this case, it’s little kids instead of teenagers. Good entertainment, SK style.

 

The “bonus story” The Dune is much shorter story, with fairly classic SK story elements, but there’s no horror or gore here, just an odd little story of mysterious events, with a fun little twist at the end.

 

Audiobook version, borrowed from my public library. Thomas Sadoski (Mile 81) and Edward Herrmann (The Dune) bring their stories alive, perfectly capturing the characters through whom the story is told.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-06-16 13:47
The Boy on the Bridge ★★★★☆
The Boy on the Bridge - M.R. Carey

Warning: 90% of this review is hidden under spoiler tags. Don’t read if you don’t want to be spoiled!

 

Fantastic storytelling and interesting characters lift this novel above the obvious flaws in logic. I especially loved the ending, where 

the humans’ last stand, living in isolation in desperate conditions, is found by the second generation Hungries, only to find that the new species has no interest in eating them, but instead regards them with the anthropological interest of 20th century explorers from the West who come across the last aboriginal tribe.

(spoiler show)

 

But there are tremendous black holes in the logic that makes up the framework of this story, that the author makes no attempt to address.

Consistently for every character except Rina, a Hungries bite turns them into a shambling, mindless, flesh-craving zombie within seconds. But Rina took about half an hour before demonstrating symptoms, and Stephen’s internal monologue insisted that this was normal. Also, if the 2nd Gen are children who are exposed in utero, but Hungries are undead, and a Hungry’s bite turns you within seconds, (or even 30 mins as for Rina), how can there be so many 2nd Gen children? Rina was only able to carry her baby to term and give birth to it because Stephen was able to concoct a medicine to delay her conversion for several (days? Weeks?). Other mothers wouldn’t have this benefit. So the chances that a mother could give birth  in the seconds to minutes of time elapsed between being bitten and being undead are so miniscule that it can’t account for the numbers of 2nd Gen children that the team sees. Unless the women who are pregnant when bitten continue to gestate and give birth in their undead state. But even this doesn’t make much sense. The undead don’t grow or change or seemingly carry out normal bodily functions, so how can an undead woman carry a baby to term? Nourish the baby in utero? Go through labor? Who would care for the first 2nd Gen babies? Do they just lay where they’re dropped until they grow their teeth and learn to crawl by themselves until they’re able to crawl around and gnaw on whatever living creatures can’t get away from their freakish baby teeth?

(spoiler show)

 

Well, none of that makes any sense to me, when I stopped to puzzle over it, and the author never addresses it. And yet, it was such a good story that I just barreled past all these questions to get to the ending, which was a good one.

 

Audiobook, purchased via Audible. Finty Williams provides an outstanding performance.

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review 2017-06-16 04:52
Infected: Shift (Infected #5)
Infected: Shift - Andrea Speed

I'll be honest. Since this was the last book in the Dreamspinner bundle, I was ready to quit the series here. Up to this point, the stories were good, with some brilliance hiding in amongst the mediocre, and the characters were compelling but at the same time not exactly giving me much to come back to. Most of my issues with this series to date has been the author's writing style, which I've detailed over the previous reviews, and there's just no real way to get around that no matter how promising the premise. I'm not sure what happened with this book, if this is a sign of the author's growth as a writer or the editors doing their job, but while there were still some of the issues present, they were far less numerous and much less annoying. With those out of the way, and two well-done and well-written cases, the writing was finally able to get out my way so I could enjoy the story - if that makes sense. (Though it's not completely without side-eye, hence the half-star off the rating.) 

 

Oh, and there are hockey players. Clueless, lovable, batcrap crazy dude-broing hockey players. :D I loved the Falcons and the dynamic they brought to the story and really hope to see them again. It doesn't make sense. It's like trying to squeeze The Mighty Ducks into an episode of Thundercats (which itself is really more like an episode of Fringe pretending to be an episode of Thundercats), and yet somehow it works.

 

I should probably slap an "unprofessional professional" on this story but it seems a little late for that. Roan's never really walked the line anyway, and while he should've had his PI license revoked about three books ago, there's no denying he gets the job done. And those jobs are getting messier, more dangerous and much more personal. I guess I have more of a vigilante streak than I thought I did, because instead of headshaking at the dude (or at Holden), I'm rooting them on. Seriously, these scumbags deserve it. 

 

There are some ups and downs for Dylan and Roan too, and I'm getting to the point where I'd like to see more of Dylan's POV, especially with all the challenges he faces in this book. Telling me he's doing 'y' because of what he did after 'x' just doesn't cut it. I want to see it, and I hope we get that in the next book. Because I will be reading it. I'm in it for the long haul after this and can only hope the series doesn't backslide after getting this much needed boost.

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