logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: Alexander-Gordon-Smith
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2018-02-01 00:56
January in Review

January in Review

(Read: 5 / Reviewed: 9)

It's certainly been an interesting, if not a long, month! Phew, I thought January would never end! Fortunately I got through some great books and was able to write two reviews each week. This new routine really helped me stay on top of things. Let's take a look at all the bookish goodness, shall we?

Read

3656184131713935DirectIngest, , Manually Released3755307925082869

 

 

Splatterpunk Fighting Back by (multiple) - This analogy has eleven individual stories written by different authors. Going in, I was only vaguely familiar with Duncan Ralston, having previously finished Woom. I never would've discovered this had it not been for Horror Aficionados on Goodreads, of who appointed it the January group read with author invite. I was lucky enough to ask some of the authors questions whilst trying to gain more insight into their brutal tales, and I had a blast! The best thing, though? All proceeds of this book go to charity! (Rated: 4/5)

A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay - Another one I wouldn't have picked up if not for the Horror Aficionados group. Being the January group read, I was pleasantly surprised by this one! (Rated: 4/5)

The Darkest Torment by Gena Showalter - I started this long-running series in 2011, and it's still ongoing. Whilst I really enjoyed it at the beginning, my enjoyment waned several instalments ago, however I can't just give up without finishing it, can I? Ludicrous! (Rated: 2/5)

What Hides Within by Jason Parent - I found this on Netgalley, and I'm glad I did! Bloodshot Books accepted my request, and I promptly read and reviewed it. (Rated: 4/5)

Morium by S.J. Hermann - I was requested to read and review this novel by the author. Being my last read of January, this one takes priority and will be the first review of February. See my request information here. (Rated: 3/5)

 

Reviewed 

724210080437623067683364937192948189026803158362081703755307924781449

 

Blood Song by Cat Adams (WORST READ)
Lockdown by Alexander Gordon Smith
The Taste of Night by Vicki Pettersson
Stephen by Amy Cross
The Devil’s Work by Mark Edwards
Blood Moon by Graeme Reynolds (BEST READ)
Woom by Duncan Ralston
What Hides Within by Jason Parent
Dark Space by Kevis Hendrickson

Other than that, January was a decent month for me personally. I'm enjoying reading more, getting out more, and generally trying to put more effort into my day-to-day life. I thank everyone who made this past month all the better, including the wonderful authors I had the chance to speak to! Here's hoping for a book-tastic February!

Red xx

Source: redlace.reviews/2018/01/31/january-in-review
Like Reblog Comment
review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-11-28 13:00
Lockdown by Alexander Gordon Smith
Lockdown - Alexander Gordon Smith
Lockdown by Alexander Gordon Smith
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Alex Sawyer finds himself in Furnace Penitentiary; a pit in the ground, its sole purpose to cage away the youngest of offenders. The thing is, Alex may be a thief, and he may have broken the law, but he certainly doesn't belong in Hell. Facing a lifetime underground, of never seeing the sun again, Alex is determined to escape. Good thing he's made friends, for he'll need all the help he can get.

(WARNING: This review contains spoilers.)

This wasn't a bad book (the Escape from Furnace series is five instalments long); I actually quite enjoyed it on some level, however certain questions got in the way and became an obstacle I unfortunately couldn't bypass. Without sufficient world-building, I just couldn't fully appreciate the premise of the plot; it seemed too far-fetched to me, lacking in any form of realism. But this is a book, right? It doesn't need to be realistic, it's fiction, after all. Well, if a story's told correctly, if sense is made through the writing, then the author makes you believe, no matter if it's about elves and goblins or whatever else. Words are a tool to be used, to transport us to new worlds that in themselves need to work. This didn't work.

Sure, there was a bit of background on the world, and it touched upon why society believed it imperative to lock away children, but it was minimal and certainly not enough. Logic and reason just kept worming its way into my mind, asking why. Why create the most horrific prison for teenagers? Adults commit appalling crimes just as much, if not worse in comparison, yet this prison - this hell - isn't for them? Let's get the important facts out of the way, shall we?

- Each and every prisoner is there serving a life sentence. LIFE. I recall there being kids younger than fourteen.
- Inmates have zero rights. No visitation, no health checks, nothing regarding the law.
- They're killed and / or transformed into monsters regularly. Basically guinea pigs for the warden and his experiments.
- Oh, and they're all male. No females in sight. I can't say I agree with the exclusion, but I get this is supposed to be a book catered to young boys.

They're thrown away, forgotten about, and whilst I understand the "Summer of Slaughter" may have been a horrendous thing, the plausibility was severely lacking.

Moving on, before I just keep on repeating myself! Another thing that occurred to me throughout the chapters - this series is labelled as "young adult", however I found there to be sensitive material that younger readers could very well find disturbing; including the murder and abuse of minors. This isn't something that bothered me per say, but even I felt a chill or two down my spine at the horror elements Smith included with vivid description.

Despite my complaints and belief that it's extremely flawed, I didn't hate it. I kept wanting to read more, to see what would become of each and every character introduced. I found it interesting to read about Alex's range of emotions; from desperation, to fear, to that spark of hope. The place had an effect on the boy; weighing upon his shoulders until he felt he'd been trapped there a lot longer than the mere days in which was reality. Alex may have made mistakes throughout, but I found him likeable. He had spirit, and despite his mistakes in life, he had a good heart. He wasn't my favourite, though, as Donovan took that position. Older, more mature, he strived to take care of the group. I believed it was completely reasonable for him to question Alex's ideas, and for his mindset to be cynical. I actually felt something when he was taken - some sense of sadness.

Whilst some things got repetitive in regards to the writing (the same thing would be described in different ways, over and over, such as the voices of the "blacksuits"), it worked for me. A lot was able to be conveyed; the sheer ugliness of Furnace itself. The dogs, the "wheezers", and in general the frightening side of the plot, were all written superbly. I felt entertained until the very end, and the cliffhanger promptly made me buy the next one. I guess that was the intention!

In conclusion - I found it to be entertaining, however it failed in convincing me how Furnace could be allowed in any country. I'll be continuing on with the series, with the hopes of having a history lesson.

Solitary is the next instalment of this series, and was first published in 2009.

Notable Scene:

The monster was standing outside my cell, staring at me with eyes so deeply embedded in its shrivelled face that they looked like black marbles. The contraption that covered its mouth and nose was coloured with rust and verdigris, and this close I could see that the ancient metal was stitched permanently into the skin.

© Red Lace 2018

Wordpress ~ Goodreads ~ Twitter

 

Source: redlace.reviews/2018/01/05/lockdown-by-alexander-gordon-smith
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2016-05-17 13:37
The Devil's Engine: Hellraisers - Alexander Gordon Smith

Marlowe Green is sixteen and has carved a part of the male anatomy on Principal Caputos car. Then Principal Caputo and three cops showed up at Marlowe’s math class to get him. Once again Marlowe was kicked out of school the third one in eight months. His mother had warned him that one of these days he would not be able to outrun the trouble he caused. Marlowe goes to but some alcohol at a local store after he had got away from the cops with the help of one of his classmates. But he then witnesses a demonic attack.

I had a difficult time reading this . The story just didn’t hold my interest . I also found it a little boring at times and I just didn’t connect with the characters. It just wasn’t my type of story apparently.

I received an ARC of this story for an honest review.

Like Reblog Comment
review 2015-12-13 05:20
Review: The Devil's Engine: Hellraisers

If I ever find myself needing inspiration for a horror story, one of my go-to authors is Alexander Gordon Smith. His work is explosive, exciting, creepy, and absolutely thrilling Not to mention gory as hell. I loved his Escape from Furnace series (and if you haven't read it yet, what are you waiting for?!), and he excels again with his new trilogy. The first book, The Devil's Engine: Hellraisers, is virtually nonstop action from start to finish, a wild, creative ride that leaves you breathless and desperate for more. Definitely a book to pick up if you haven't already. 

 

Badass cover where you can almost feel the evilness of the Engine.

 

When a sixteen-year-old troublemaker named Marlow Green is trapped in a surreal firefight against nightmarish creatures in the middle of his New York City neighborhood, he unwittingly finds himself amid a squad of secret soldiers dedicated to battling the legions of the devil himself.

 

Powering this army of young misfits is an ancient machine from the darkest parts of history. Known as the devil’s engine, it can make any wish come true-as long as you are willing to put your life on the line. Promised powers beyond belief, and facing monstrous apparitions straight out of the netherworld, Marlow must decide if he’s going to submit to a demonic deal with the infernal machine that will enable him to join the crusade-if it doesn’t kill him first.

 

From the author of the Escape from Furnace series, here is the opening salvo in an explosive new horror trilogy about an ordinary American kid caught up in an invisible war against the very worst enemy imaginable.

 

The book starts from two very different perspectives– the first being Marlow's, as he makes it clear that he's a troublemaker with no direction, too busy drawing "rockets" on his principal's car hood. I admit, that made me laugh pretty hard. The other perspective is from the a young woman named Pan the Hellraisers, a group of men and women who have supernatural abilities they use to fight demons. 

 

The abilities come from a messed up device called the Devil's Engine. I won't go into details about how it works, but suffice to say that the name should give you some hints. The rules, mythology, and world that have been created are exciting and unique. While it's not as deep as the Furnace series (yet anyway), the complexity is obvious. This is not a machine you tamper with lightly, and the consequences of doing so are alarmingly severe. I can't wait to learn more about the Engine in future novels.

 

The characters are fantastic. Marlow is a great lead, a young man whose identity struggles are realistic and understandable. He's not a stereotypical hero, but he's not a bad person. I genuinely enjoyed reading about his mistakes, and the lengths he went to make them right. He's not perfect, but who wants a Mary Sue? 

 

Speaking of characters who know no bounds at getting the job done, Pan is awesome. Stone cold bitch to be sure, but she's seriously kick-ass. Tough as nails, but alarmingly vulnerable as the weight of their duty becomes heavier and heavier.

 

This is not a book for the faint of heart. As mentioned before, one of the things I love about Alexander Gordon Smith's work is the level of violence and gore. He's a master at painting vivid, bloody pictures that made even me cringe. And if you think he's going to take it easy on you when he describes the demons and the monstrosity in the final battle? Think again! 

 

The Devil's Engine: Hellraisers is seriously badass. One of the wildest books I've read this year. I hated having to go to work and put it down. Once you start, you won't want to stop for anything. So pick it up and start reading it now. No contract with a machine from Hell required! 

 

Amy

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2015-12-07 11:30
Hellraisers by Alexander Gordon Smith
The Devil's Engine: Hellraisers - Alexander Gordon Smith

Hellraisers (The Devil's Engine #1) by Alexander Gordon Smith

There is a machine from the darkest parts of history, concealed in an impossible location, that can make any wish come true, and the only price you have to pay is your soul. Known as the Devil’s Engine, this device powers a brutal war between good and evil that will decide the fate of every living thing on Earth. When a 16-year-old asthmatic kid named Marlow Green unwittingly rescues an ass-kicking secret soldier from a demonic attack in the middle of his Staten Island neighborhood, he finds himself following her into a centuries-old conflict between a group of mysterious protectors and the legions of the Devil himself. Faced with superpowers, monsters, machine guns, and a lot worse, Marlow knows it's going to be a breathless ride—and not just because he’s lost his inhaler along the way.



My Review:
I gave Hellraisers four stars because it takes a really good YA to impress me and keep me entertained. I really enjoyed Gordon's writing and his sort of Wishmaster kind of story. The whole good vs evil was a great start and considering that this book was the first installment to the series there is no doubt more development for the machine and the characters. There are some shifting developments as far as its cast but in the end I felt this book has a lot of potential. I'm sure it would be really great for teens and adults alike to enjoy.


My Rating:
4 Stars


Reviewed By: Krissy's Bookshelf Reviews
http://kkmalott.booklikes.com/


Note: I received a digital copy in exchange for an honest review

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?