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Search tags: Getting-Rid-of-Bradley
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review 2020-05-25 01:56
Quintessential Romantic Suspense
Standoff - Patricia Bradley

What originally attracted me to this book was the cover, followed by the series title: Natchez Trace Park Rangers. As a lover of the outdoors, that was enough to reel me in, and since this is book one, I did not hesitate to sign up for a review copy. Thankfully, I did not look at the synopsis (a habit that I have adopted so as not to spoil any part of the plotline), because doing so would most likely have deterred me from wanting to read the book. Anything relating to drug cartels and the like just doesn’t appeal to me. As soon as I picked up this novel and realized what I was getting into, I began wondering if I had made a mistake.

However, my fears were quickly allayed as I settled into Patricia Bradley’s swift, engaging writing style. “Standoff” comes out of the starting gate with a shot (literally) and never lets up, forging ahead relentlessly to the last page. Short chapters also facilitate this, giving the impression of a staccato beat that fits how the plot plays out. While I enjoyed that the story never lagged, I have to admit that the abundance of characters is overwhelming. Each of the first several chapters is about a different person, all of whom are critical to the narrative, and because the story remains in the third-person, I personally had a very difficult time keeping track of who was who. Brooke Danvers is the only character who stood out to me, being the female lead. I understand that the profusion of characters is necessary for the storyline, but I think that it would be very helpful to perhaps have a character list, one that would be brief so as not to give any spoilers, but with just a few words to help readers keep the characters separate from one another.

Quintessential romantic suspense, “Standoff” lives up to its name in more ways than one. There is, of course, the drug ring, which becomes the concentric circle surrounding the characters, two of whom are vying for a serious relationship with Brooke while others want her dead. Add in family drama and personal conflict, and the stage is set for an exhilarating Natchez excursion, grounded in the truth that God is always with us and that He sees the end from the beginning.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

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review 2020-05-18 03:16
The Golden Tresses of the Dead by Alan Bradley
The Golden Tresses of the Dead - Alan Bradley

Series: Flavia de Luce #10

 

I have to say that listening to Flavia is a lot of fun, although I'm not sure I really understood what was actually going on in the mystery. I'm not sure whether I just wasn't paying enough attention or whether it really was as wishy washy as it seemed. But anyway, even if the mystery was only so so, Flavia's shenanigans are always fun. And I have to say that she definitely deserves her cousin, Undine. That little terror.

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review 2020-05-16 17:59
Two novels that don't live up to their reputations
Seven From the Stars / Worlds of the Imperium - Keith Laumer,Marion Zimmer Bradley

On my latest dive into my pile of Ace Doubles I came up with a pair of novels about which I had mixed feelings. Keith Laumer's Worlds of the Imperium is one that I have long wanted to read, as it's considered an early classic of alternate history. I've never been a fan of Laumer's work, though, and while there were elements of the story I enjoyed (in which an American from our world is kidnapped by another timeline in order to fight his dictatorial double on another world), it never felt like it lived up to its reputation.

 

Reputation also was a factor in how I judged Marion Zimmer Bradley's Seven From the Stars. While it seems as though the books of her Avalon series were everywhere when I was growing up this was the first of her novels that I've read. It's a more conventional sci-fi tale written early in Bradley's career in which seven human-looking aliens crash land in Texas, where they're forced to find ways to survive. This premise alone offers enormous possibilities, yet Bradley layers it with the efforts of an undercover observer to rescue them and the looming threat of an amorphous Big Bad. It felt like a case of too much plot getting in the way of a good story, and while I try not to hold an author's early work against them, given Bradley's horrifying personal actions I doubt I'll seek out any more of her novels.

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text 2020-05-06 04:54
Reading progress update: I've read 133 out of 253 pages.
Seven From the Stars / Worlds of the Imperium - Keith Laumer,Marion Zimmer Bradley

Last night I had some anxiety-related difficulty sleeping, so I decided to start one of the Ace Doubles I have lying around. I began with Keith Laumer's Worlds of the Imperium, as it was an early alt-history novel that I had read about but never had the opportunity to read for myself until now.

 

I've never been a big fan of Laumer's work, and this novel didn't do a lot to change my opinion. In it, the central character gets kidnapped from our universe by an multi-world-spanning Imperium, because his alternate in another timeline is waging an inter-temporal war. It's an interesting premise that was pretty fresh when JFK was in the White House but it's been done quite a lot since and it wasn't difficult for them to improve on what Laumer does. What was potentially a rich premise ends up being squandered in what could have been a non-sci-fi adventure without too much tweaking.

 

Now I have to work out whether I'm going to read Marion ZImmer Bradley's book, as I have to decide whether I can separate the art from the artist.

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review 2020-03-18 10:28
The Cat and the City
Cat and the City - Nick Bradley

by Nick Bradley

 

The structure of this book reminded me of Ray Bradley's Illustrated Man, in that the stories were all represented by a spread out tattoo and the beginning and end came full circle, albeit the ending was rather brief. There were some translator's notes, which explained a play on words in one instance although the author isn't Japanese and this might have been added as a folly.

 

The stories are all connected by a cat, who moves around in the tattoo. The first story was very good and kept my interest, but some of the subsequent stories went into crudity and one involved killing cats which pushes all my revulsion buttons. Overall it has the tone as if it were translated from Japanese and had a lot of local knowledge of Tokyo, but after the first story I didn't find the others enjoyable at all.

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