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Search tags: Greg-Ruth
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review 2017-10-27 22:21
Freaks of the Heartland
Freaks of the Heartland - Steve Niles,Greg Ruth
I really enjoyed this graphic novel. We begin with a father who likes his drink, a mother who tries to stick up for her children and son who is silent outside but has lots of emotions inside. The illustrations showcase the gloom and the emotions that hang over the household. You don’t really need to read the words to know how each individual feels as they tread inside the house. The boy must go tend to his brother and at these words, I am wondering if they named one of the livestock “brother.” I am hoping that my guess is correct but as I turn the page and see a large child shackled in a barn, my hatred towards the father grows. It is the conversation that these two brothers have that tells me that love still resides outside in this barn. It is later at night when the boy unshackles his brother, unbeknownst to anyone, so that they can romp and walk through the fields together that I have hope for these two boys.
 
The next morning, father is planning to matters into his own hands as he takes his rifle down from the wall. When mother says, “Maybe if we didn’t treat them like animals they wouldn’t act like animals.” I am startled as she said “them” so there is more than one individual being treated like the boy in the barn. What occurs out in the barn made me wonder who the freak was in the novel and how many more freaks I would read about before this novel was over.
 
This is one of those novels where you wonder how things will play themselves out. Why is the boy’s brother being held in the barn and who else was in hiding? What would happen in the final pages of this book? It was hard not to look.

 

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review 2016-05-12 16:56
The Book of Storms by Ruth Hatfield
The Book of Storms (The Book of Storms Trilogy) - Ruth Hatfield,Greg Call

This book is part of the NetGalley ARCs that I have backlogged, and am trying to clear out.

 

Truth be told, I don't quite know where to start with my feelings on this book. So, I suppose I'll just type and see where it takes me. Let me say, for a story titled The Book of Storms, there wasn't much action or excitement to be had. In fact, this entire book had a very lackluster vibe to it. This was a definite case of a brilliant idea, succumbing to poor execution. Danny's new found abilities had the opportunity to be absolutely amazing. There just wasn't enough here to support it.

 

This book moves too slowly for its own good. There truthfully wasn't any point that felt like a climax, although I could see where it was likely supposed to be. In fact, Danny's whole journey just didn't feel genuine. To me, the point of a life altering journey is to grow and change. To realize your inner potential. Danny's character felt stagnant, and that put a damper on things. Even when he was being "brave", it didn't feel like the truth. Not having a strongly written main character makes for a difficult read.

 

Now, I probably could have forgiven all of this and given this book a 3-star rating if it weren't for Sammael's character. I love a well-written villain. I have no issue completely loathing a character, as long as I can understand him. Sammael was vague. He was paper thin. His character wasn't developed, but simply written as being this mean spirited entity that had a chip on his shoulder against human kind. If I had to guess, I think the key point here was that he hated humans for ruining the Earth. Maybe. It's hard to tell. Add in the fact that he blatantly abused his animal companion, and I was so done with his character. I don't care how terrible you are, you don't abuse an animal. Especially in a book billed for an MG audience.

 

Alas, this just wasn't what I expected it to be. I did finish, to see whether the ending would bring this story around. Instead, I was given an ending that just made me sigh in frustration. This is a series, so my only hope is that Danny will grow in the stories to come.

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review 2015-06-18 04:08
The Lost Boy by Greg Ruth
The Lost Boy - Greg Ruth

Well now, this was a treat. I've been on a graphic novel reading binge lately and, as much as I love a vibrant panel, the first thing that caught my eye here was the stark black and white inking. This is the story of Nate. Of his move to a new place, of finding a mysterious recorder, and of discovering that there are things out there well beyond what we can imagine. I would have thought that I'd want this story told to me in color. Honestly though? Now that I've read it I can't imagine it any other way.

 

The art in these panels is stunning. It's crisp, the faces are realistic, and it suits the mood of this story perfectly. While this is a little darker than most YA graphic novels out there, it places one foot firmly in the world of Fantasy. The pages are populated with all manner of both interesting and slightly unnerving characters. The world that Nate finds has quite a different type of soldier. Squirrels, rag dolls, and bugs, they are all pawns in this ongoing battle. It makes this story magical, and slightly eerie.

 

Highly recommended! I thoroughly enjoyed this.

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review 2015-01-02 00:42
The Lost Boy by Greg Ruth
The Lost Boy - Greg Ruth
Nate's not happy about moving, but he didn't really have a choice. When he chooses his bedroom, Nate finds an old tape recorder under the floor board and learns about the boy who recorded the tapes that disappeared many years ago.

And just as the boy on the tape, Nate begins to see the strange creatures of the town. Together with his new neighbor, Tabitha, Nate must find out what these creatures want.

This was actually a book that was in my recommendations on here. It sounded interesting and since my library had a copy, I decided to give it a read.

The artwork is just truly amazing. I often lingered on the pages just to take it all in.

And I liked the characters too. The story was interesting and how the book it seems there may be another one. If this book ever has a sequel, I'll read it as I quite enjoyed this one.
 
 

 

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review 2014-06-20 00:00
Something Going Around
Something Going Around - Harry Turtledove,Greg Ruth There’s an “epidemic” going around. People are throwing themselves in front of cars.

Stan witnessed it, so did Victor, and that guy on the stool next to Stan at the bar.
People have noticed it happening, but the "victims" are just poor unhappy fools trying to end it all, right?


I’ve never read anything by Harry Turtledove before, but a friend of mine is a huge fan, and now I’m wondering what took me so long!

There is just so much I liked about this story.

The main character was telling the story to us, sometimes interrupting the flow of the story to correct himself on his descriptors. But it was done in such an easy, colloquial, engaging way, that you almost feel you are in fact having a conversation with Stan.

This story came complete with a lesson in Toxoplasmosis.

Namely how Toxoplasmosis in these guys:

image

Increases their chances of being eaten by and passing on the parasites to these guys:

image

Which can then be passed on to humans.


(Don’t worry, it’s all very interesting and important to the story.)


What I loved about this story was that it showed the character speculating on something without ever voicing it(to others or in his head), and the climactic scene came very subtly, with allusions to things earlier in the story letting us know what was going on, without having to spell it out for us.

Yes, I knew what was going on before I reached the halfway point in the story, and I suspect Stan did, too, but it was written in such a way that I was happy to stay for the duration of the ride, and will definitely keep an eye out for other works by this author.

You can read this story for free, here: http://www.tor.com/stories/2014/04/something-going-around-harry-turtledove
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