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review 2018-10-30 17:55
Hell Divers by Nicholas Sansbury Smith
Hell Divers (Hell Divers Trilogy Book 1) - Nicholas Sansbury Smith

I’ve listened to this book twice and it was great both times through. The first go drew me in with this airship and the hell divers and the destroyed land beneath them. The second pass let me appreciate the characters more. Xavier (X to most) and his sorta adopted kid Tin are both great characters. Both have a lot on their shoulders and both save their little society in their own ways.

The setting really captured my imagination. Yes, this is post-apocalyptic fiction, but in this world, the apocalypse came a bit further along the human timeline. Even the remnants of the technology that was once available is just beyond what we have now. The Hell Divers jump to gather much needed supplies for their airship, keeping it in the air, away from the worst of the radiation for generations now. But stuff is breaking down, supplies are limited, and the situation becomes more and more desperate.

I did get a little chuckle over Hades being what once was Chicago. All those deadly lightning storms! And the monsters dubbed the Sirens! I’m a huge Dresden Files fan and I can just see Harry Dresden rolling over in his grave that Chicago has fallen to lightning and monsters!

Even with everything being in a desperate state, politics still plays a role in the management of the ship. So true. I can see why the rebels demand more meds and more food but their efforts end in a body count and could have easily ended them all! The captain was put in a very tough situation. She couldn’t let this minor rebellion grow but any body count earns her a bit more hatred from part of the population. Captain Ash earned my respect with her actions during this crisis.

I loved that the ladies were part of every aspect of this story. They were in the military management of the airship. They were Hell Divers. They were teachers, cooks, kids, drug addicted desperate people, etc. For a military post-apocalyptic scifi, this was a very important aspect for me and Smith met the challenge! Yay! It’s only practical to have women be on an equal footing at the end of the world.

The action never stops with this book. There were so many moments where I thought for sure this character or that was toast! I was on the edge of my seat the first time I read it. On the second pass, you could still catch me nibbling my fingernails as I relived this scene or that. This was a very enjoyable book! 5/5 stars.

The Narration: R. C. Bray is a delight to listen to. His deep voice for X is perfect. His female voices sounded feminine and his little kid voices were realistic. He makes a great Tin as well as a great Captain Ash. The pacing is perfect and he performs those emotional scenes perfectly. 5/5 stars

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text 2018-10-25 17:03
Audible Halloween $6.95 Sale!
Carrion Comfort - Dan Simmons
The Collector - John Fowles
Joplin's Ghost - Tananarive Due
Secondhand Spirits - Juliet Blackwell
Thornwood House - Anna Romer
The Lottery and Other Stories - Shirley Jackson
FantasticLand - Mike Bockoven
Hell House - Richard Matheson
They Thirst - Robert R. McCammon
Cold Moon Over Babylon - Michael McDowell

Oh boy, I took in a huge book haul. Just when I'm fed up on horror and mystery and ready for nothing but non-fantastical fiction for a while. But oh, well, these will keep until I'm ready for chills and thrills again. 

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review 2018-10-20 22:18
Hell On Wheels
Hell on Wheels - Julie Ann Walker

Well, I liked it, but didn't really like it...I have some nitpicks. So, Ali's got some people after her and she goes to her brother's best friend for help. She's known him (and been in love with him) for over a decade and vice versa.
This had a decent amount of suspense. The characters are likable. But, the romance was so-so. It's the "I'm in love with best friend's sibling" trope, but can't have them because it's my best friend's sibling/not good enough. Whatever. Last I checked both were adults and didn't need anyone's permission. I thought the back and forth (I want you, but can't have you! and Made a move/said something, but then a push back) was too much and lasted too long before they finally got together. I also thought the ending a bit rushed. 
Ali was a well written character. I felt I knew her. Nate not so much. I knew next to nothing about him and that was the same at the end. While I liked Ali, be warned. She has a weak stomach and threw up 4 times. The other thing? She doesn't cuss. It's crapola. HE double hockey sticks. Frank even apologies for cussing (yes, women have delicate ears and will go ape shit should they hear a curse word!). Insert eye-roll here.
I thought Becky and Frank (who also happen to be the couple featured in the next book) had a strong story-line in this book. I am definitely pro-Becky. I thought she was fantastic and kick ass. I loved that she was so unconventional. Frank? I'm calling him a misogynistic asshole! I thought Becky was tolerated, because they NEED her skills, but at the same time, was not really one of THEM. Her goal is to be one of THEM. She takes steps to make that happen, and Frank, tells her she will never be one of them. And if she leaves, he will sabotage her chances. Now, it doesn't say what his reasoning was (beyond "for her own good"), but I can't help but think it's because: 1. Becky is a woman. 2. He likes Becky. 3. He must therefore "protect" her. I'm curious if he redeems himself because I thought this book had good, strong female characters that didn't venture into TSTL territory and could hold their own.
Featured in this book: Frank (Boss), Rebecca (Becky), Ethan (Ozzie), Dan (Dan Man), Patti
Someone does die. Wonder if Dagan will join?
Mentioned: Billy (Becky's brother), Christian, Rock, Steady, Mac, Jamin

Halloween Bingo:  Suspense square.  

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quote 2018-10-20 04:31
First came Jaws by Peter Benchley, a novel about a stressed-out great white shark suffering from portion control issues.

Paperbacks From Hell by Grady Hendrix

 

 

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text 2018-10-14 12:10
Vintage Rescues! [Horror, teen, children 60s-90s]

It feels weird to me, too, but I guess we're now calling 90s things vintage. Ouch!

 

I was inspired by Paperbacks From Hell by Grady Hendrix and some awesome Instagram accounts to go on a hunt for some "vintage" books, from Horror, teen and children books.

 

Inspired by these accounts:

@booksuncovered [They judge books by their covers, but mostly post older, nostalgic type books.]

@vintagebooknerd [They post vintage books, obviously!]

@heylittlethrifter [She thrifts books and a lot are older, nostalgic books! She also has a Youtube channel under the same name.]

 

Disclaimer: Times were different when these were published. If you look into getting any of these, I am sure by today's standards, they are full of problematic, offensive material (even the children books!) Also, it would be a safe bet to say all the horror books have trigger warnings! I am mentioning the original publish date, not the date of any reprints.

 

I did something wild... I bought all these without looking up ratings and reviews, like people used to do back in the day.

 

Okay on to the show!

Here is what I found! 

 

An Old Friend of the Family [1979 - Dracula series #3 - Mentioned in Paperbacks From Hell]

The Children [1982 - Mentioned in Paperbacks From Hell]

Dominion [1982- Dracula series #5]

Spectre [1988]

Demon Within [1988]

 

 Fiends [1990]

 Billy [1990]

Candlenight [1991]

Twisted [1992]

Cutting Edge [1986]

 

The Perfume [1992]

Trapped: Cages of Mind and Body [1998]

The Accident [1991]

Don't Look Behind You [1989]

The Twisted Window [1987]

Stranger With My Face [1981 - Mentioned in Paperbacks From Hell]

 

 

The Dreamer [1996]

Humor - Horror - and the Supernatural [1968]

The Stepdaughter [1993]

Midnight Fright [1980]

My True Love Gave To Me [1993 - Scream series #5 (stand-alone series)]

The Scariest Stories You've Ever Heard Part 3 [1990]

 

 

The Immortal [1993]

The Party [1988 - Final Friends #1]

The Dance [1988 - Final Friends #2]

 

 

Mary Anne's Book [1996 - The Babysitters Club Portrait Collection]

Logan Bruno, Boy Baby-sitter [1991 - The Babysitters Club Special Edition]

Claudia's Book [1995 - The Babysitters Club Portrait Collection]

Sideways Stories from Wayside School [1978 - Wayside #1]

Sunny, Diary Two [1998 - California Diaries #6]

Wayside School is Falling Down [1989 - Wayside #2]

 

 

The Stranger I Left Behind [1989]

A Taste Of Smoke [1993]

The Secret Secret Passage [1992 - Clue #2]

The Whipping Boy [1986]

 

 

The Ghostmobile [1987]

Fourth-Graders Don't Believe In Witches [1989]

Secret Agents Four [1967]

Mystery of the Secret Dolls [1993]

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