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review 2018-09-24 09:56
Curiosity Thrilled the Cat ★★☆☆☆ (DNF)
Curiosity Thrilled the Cat - Sofie Kelly

I just could not get interested in this book. By the time I waded through all the exposition in the beginning chapters to get to the actual mystery, I no longer cared much. I like the idea of a cat-lady librarian for a main character, but other than judging people by the books they check out, there's not much library to this story aside from the setting. The cats weren't particularly engaging for me, either. 

 

Anyway, I hate to abandon a book after getting so far into it, but I just couldn't face another seven hours of audio when I was barely paying attention anyway. DNF at 32%

 

Audio version, borrowed from my public library. Cassandra Campbell's performance was ok. I was attempting to read this for the 2018 Halloween Bingo square Cozy Mystery:  a subgenre of crime fiction in which sex and violence are downplayed or treated humorously, and the crime and detection take place in a small, socially intimate community. Instead, I have picked up book #6 in the Haunted Home Renovation series, Give Up the Ghost - Juliet Blackwell  . 

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review 2018-09-23 19:59
Review: “One-Eyed Royals” (Seven of Spades, #4) by Cordelia Kingsbridge
One-Eyed Royals - Cordelia Kingsbridge

 

~ 5 STARS ~

 

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review 2018-09-23 13:50
Rage ★★★☆☆
Rage - Stephen King,Richard Bachman

This reads just as I expected it to – very early Stephen King. It’s weird, it’s graphically violent, it f***s with your head, but it has a lame wtf ending and is not quite absorbing enough to prevent the reader from thinking how unlikely it is that real people would behave this way. Not the murderous main character, of course, but the other students who become complicit as he holds them hostage. The MC is unfortunately all too plausible. King has said that he started writing this book as a teenager, and that he drew from his own angst, loneliness, confusion, and, yes, rage in writing it. And several real-life teenagers identified so strongly with it that they drew inspiration from the novel in committing their own school shootings. Which is why this novel has been allowed to go out of print.

 

 

My own copy is part of a tatty second-hand paperback of The Bachman Books, a monstrously sized four novel collection. I read this for the 2018 Halloween Bingo square Genre: Horror: anything that fits into the horror genre. If a boy going on a school shooting rampage and setting up his fellow students to turn on one another in their own fear and rage isn’t horror, I don’t know what is.

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review 2018-09-23 05:59
Keeper of the Castle ★★☆☆☆
Keeper of the Castle - Juliet Blackwell

First an explanation: This would have been another comfortable 3 star entry into the Haunted Renovation series, but I had to knock off a star because it made me mad. The one fictional trope that really chaps me is the mean-spirited nurse who inserts herself as a pointless barrier between patients and families, ruthlessly enforcing visiting hours and providing little to no actual care to the patient. And in this one, the author has “Nurse Ratched” not only kicking visitors out for no reason, she spends time reading fiction when she’s supposed to be caring for her critically ill ICU patients. And this is actually what supposedly makes her a more sympathetic, approachable human?!? Nope, nope nope.

 

I really enjoy this series, and I was really happy that this one was available to me on audio, because Xe Sands is a perfect fit for the MC, reading with a wry humor and seemingly genuine affection for the characters and story. The mystery itself was promising, with the setting moving outside of San Francisco for the first time. Since the ghosts were tied to the stones of a medieval monastery, the historical timeframe was new, as well. I appreciate that the author is keeping the series from settling into a rut of sameness. But the Nurse Ratched caricature cost it this time.

 

Audiobook, borrowed from my public library. I read this for the 2018 Halloween Bingo square Murder Most Foul: Any murder mystery. In this story, a city building inspector is murdered by someone dropping a 60lb bag of mortar on his head. Ouch.

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review 2018-09-22 23:05
The Colour of Magic ★★★★☆
The First Discworld Novels: The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic - Terry Pratchett

When I read this eight years ago, it was my first taste of Discworld. I was amazed and delighted, and I immediately set out to collect and read every single one. Of course, there are so many books, and the series seems to follow a construction and logic all its own, so after flailing about for a couple of books, I decided to read them one subseries at a time, starting with Witches. With one Witches book to go, I’m now starting over, re-reading the entire Discworld universe in chronological order of published dates, together with the Booklikes Discworld group.

 

In this second reading of The Colour of Magic, I felt just as delighted with Rincewind and Twoflower and especially the Luggage as when it was new. But with the perspective of having read some of the later books in the series, I was a little impatient with the construction of the story as a whole. It felt jumpy, disconnected, less of a coherent story and more of a series of vignettes. And the abrupt ending was maddening, with an awful temptation to jump straight into Light Fantastic to continue the story. But it’s a fun look back at the early rough construction of the Discworld universe, its odd peoples and laws and rules and funny asides. I needed this lighthearted romp – it was a nice break from a world that sometimes seems to have had its good humor sucked dry – and am looking forward to the next respite with The Light Fantastic, this coming December.

 

Previous Updates:

9/21/18:  26/175pg

9/21/18: 121/175pg

 

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