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review 2018-02-19 02:57
Gemina (The Illuminae Files) - Jay Kristoff,Amie Kaufman
So ... this series has me screaming, but internally because my family is around.

I was honestly surprised by how much I'm enjoying this series. I haven't read anything like this before but maybe this is because I just haven't ventured into this genre before or something. Either way, this is new for me.

One of my favourite things about this is the way that it's told. It's set up as a dossier with files and collections of messages sent between people and reports and video footage. The authors even went so far as to provide actual faces for almost all of the characters which is just great. There's all this pretty artwork on top of it too to keep things interesting.

And I admire how diverse the characters are, you have characters from every race and ethnicity out there and they're not background characters either, they're important. 

I need to talk about AIDAN for a second, the artificial intelligence system, because I've never been so infuriated in such a long time over an artificial intelligence system. It barely even has a personality and yet ... you wanna punch a computer in the screen just from reading this book. AIDAN is fucking crazy, like watching it develop a consciousness in the first book was honestly terrifying. This shit followed me into my dreams like I'm not joking, I was S C A R E D. But then you grow to enjoy AIDAN and it takes a lot to turn you around from hating an AI system to being like oh okay I guess you're not that bad.

I know that a few people have a problem with the romance line in the series but I honestly don't see why as it doesn't take away from the story. Like it's pretty background music type of stuff you know, it doesn't take away focus from the main story and what's really happening or what the reader is meant to be focusing on. If anything, I think it adds to the story, I feel as if I understand the characters a little better because of the underlying romance. You understand their motives more and why they do what they have to do.

I also really appreciate that the text messages they send each other are readable. Pretty much all of the time that adults attempt to write teenage talk through text it's literally unreadable. As a teenager, I can't read shit whenever I see an author's attempt to write teenage text. It takes me a good 5-10 minutes to figure out what the fuck the author is talking about BECAUSE YOU CAN'T READ THE TEXT. 

"But they're adults, they haven't been teenagers in a while." I hear you, but also just talk to a 17-year-old, text them, see how they respond. Mimic it. It's not that hard.

So yeah, I appreciate that the text talk was readable and accurate.

Also hey, let's appreciate Ella, who's disabled but still has spunk to her and is still hella smart and a force to be reckoned with. 

And the plot was really good, it kept moving at a good pace and new things kept popping up to keep you moving so things never got dull. I was honestly tense and anxious while reading this just waiting to hear what else was going to pop up. And I didn't see any of the plot twists that came up in the book, like the signs were there I just didn't think anything of it until the end and then it hit me like a brick.

So yeah, I recommend the series, I thought everything about it was great and I'm pumped for the last book to come out to see how this ends.

 

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text 2018-02-03 14:06
Reading progress update: I've read 15%.
Marvel Super Heroes: Secret Wars Prose Novel - Alex Irvine

Enjoying this.  

 

Got my internship set, and it's very close by to my house, yay!   So I'm slightly more relaxed, but I also don't know when I'm working and probably won't for another week.   I'm going to do my best to relax until then, but I'm better off with a regular schedule, so I'll be better... soon.   

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review 2018-02-01 00:03
The Cowboy Who Came Calling by Linda Broday
The Cowboy Who Came Calling (Texas Heroes) - Linda Broday

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I really liked this book. I first read Linda Broday last year when I decided to pick up the first book in this series, Knight on the Texas Plains, which I ended up loving. I knew as soon as I saw this book that I would have to read it and I am glad that I did. I really had a wonderful time getting to know Glory, Luke, and all the other characters in this story and wanted to see them get their happy ending.

I loved the first meeting between Glory and Luke. Their paths do quickly cross in town but their first real meeting goes horribly wrong when Glory accidentally shoots Luke. She takes him home to tend to his wounds and let him recover. Luke gets to know the Day family pretty quickly since Glory's youngest sister, Patience, like to share whatever comes to her mind. Luke sees how much responsibility is on Glory's shoulders and seems to understand how troubled she is.

I liked the characters in this story quite a bit. Luke was great. He is a really good man that wants to help. He will do the right thing and somehow seems to see things that others may miss. Glory was a strong character. She is tough and does what needs to be done to take care of her family. She has a lot of pride and wants to take care of things herself. It did drive me a bit nuts when she made a big deal of Luke's offer to help because she really needed the help but I understood why she behaved as she did. Glory's sisters, Hope and Patience, were wonderful. Hope was a a hard working girl who was a great support to her sisters and family. Patience was a wonderful child who added more than a few smiles to the story.

I liked Luke and Glory together. I thought that their personalities really seemed to work well together. Luke didn't see Glory's responsibilities as a negative but was happy to take them on himself. Glory didn't always seem to know how to handle Luke and had a lot of doubts but she did care for him. I would have liked to see a bit more of Luke and Glory together. There seemed to be someone around to interrupt them during most of the scenes where they had a moment alone. 

I would recommend this book to others. I had a great time reading this wonderful romance filled with fantastic characters. This is the second book in the Texas Heroes series but could easily be read as a stand alone since it tells its own story. I look forward to reading more from Linda Broday very soon.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Sourcebooks Casablanca via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
I enjoyed this story. Luke and Glory were both great characters and I thought that the way they came together was exciting. Glory has more than her share of hardships and Luke wants to help as much as he can. Glory's sisters added a lot to the story.

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review 2018-01-29 05:47
The Ones Who Got Away (The Ones Who Got Away #1) by Roni Loren
The Ones Who Got Away - Roni Loren
Finn and Olivia are part of a group of students that survived a school-shooting on prom night known as The Ones Who Got Away. He has been working as a cop for the past few years but returns home to take part in a documentary that will mark the anniversary of that fateful day. Once back home, he gets reacquainted with Olivia and other friends, but it’s definitely Olivia who’s never far from his thoughts and for whom he still has deep feelings.

I really liked their relationship. The traumatic event they went through helps them form a very unique bond since not many people around them are capable of understanding what their lives are like. At first they are a little hesitant to start any kind of relationship but then they realize that it’s in each other’s company that they will find the courage to move forward and live the lives they always wanted to live. I also liked how realistic and relatable the characters felt. I can honestly say I’ve never related to a character as much as I did to Olivia. Someone would say something to her and my mind would wander to a response and sure enough, that’s how she had responded in the book! I thought that was terrific and funny! Finn was such a perceptive and lovable man what with him being a cop trying to atone for past mistakes, and also being a regular man facing the same kind of problems any other person in his situation would. I thought the author did a great job in making such authentic characters. 

The story itself was different and even a bit gritty. While it has dark themes and deals with some PTSD issues it never falls into the extremes of angst or revenge, and it keeps the humor on the lighter side without being comical. In short, it was an endearing story about friendship, survival, leaving the past in the past, and above all, love. 

** I won a copy of this ARC through BookishFirst. This is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.**
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review 2018-01-11 03:09
ARC Review: Only You by Kay Doherty
Only You - Kay Doherty

Holy Insta-Love, Batman! And holy magic dick, Batman!

I took a chance on a new-to-me author, because the blurb of this book was intriguing. Rich party-boy/man-whore seeks new life away from the six maybe-boyfriends who'd only use him for his money and runs to his aunt's house in small-town Clover City, where he meets older, grumpy, closeted sheriff, who's still nursing a broken heart and carrying some massive guilt after his PD partner/secret lover died, back in Denver, during a domestic disturbance call gone very wrong.

I liked Case(y) initially - I could see that he was tired of being used and adrift, not sure of his way, and I hoped that he would find what he was looking for. He was immature to some extent (breaking up with his many boyfriends via text is just one example) and in desperate need of some direction in his life, something that would make it meaningful. But then, one of Case's ex-BFs tracks him down and instead of sending the guy back to where he came from, he puts him up in a hotel and pays the bill? Where was his spine? It's not like this happened shortly after Case's arrival - no, ex-BF shows up when he's already deeply involved with the sheriff. What gives?

Rawley, the closeted sheriff, is still mourning the loss of his partner, a death for which he blames himself, though he has built himself a quiet and mostly content life in Clover City. He's lonely, of course, even though he'd deny that if asked. Rawley takes one look at Case and wants. Grumpy sheriff wants the younger man, and after dragging him away from a barbeque to his house and sexy times, the sheriff is completely in lurve with the younger man, wants to keep him always, but also wonders if Case's man-whore past is not entirely a thing of the past. Jealousy is an ugly thing. 

There were some sweet moments too, and this book is entertaining. The plot flows well, I liked Case's aunt Sylvia (she was a sweetheart), and the townsfolks were nice too. 

Rawley just came on too strong sometimes, and I thought that the age gap was actually hindering them. Many times, Case acted like a doormat, and I wondered if he saw Rawley as a father figure too, instead of only a lover and an equal. Rawley had some hang-ups about Case's age as well and a bit of a dominant personality that, while it suited Case's character, was for me a bit too much. I like equality in the relationship, equal standing from a maturity perspective as much as possible, and I didn't get that here so much. 

Some of the plot points had me scratching my head, such as the rapidity with which Rawley stops grieving his ex-lover after meeting Case and their first bedroom encounter. Not only that, he also quickly gets over his guilt, a guilt that he's carried with him for two years and that he's worn like a shield to keep everyone out. Similarly, Case has one encounter with our grumpy sheriff, gets fucked through the mattress, and suddenly swears off anyone else's dick - never again will he have sex with anyone else, because... well, I guess because Rawley's dick is magic too. It's so magic, actually, that Case willingly puts up with Rawley's jealousy and distrust in his statement that he's done being a party-boy/man-whore and came to Clover City for that reason - to be done with that life. 

The ending felt a little too abrupt to me. I still had questions. What is the punishment Deputy Ted promised at the end? Is Jordan, the ex-BF, going to get that talk Case wants to have with him, and why, oh why is he still in town when the book ends? 

So, this wasn't a great read, but it did keep me entertained. Case and Rawley had some good banter going on, and while the relationship smacked of insta-love, they do get a rather nice HFN that will likely lead to a HEA, even if that must happen off-page. I could see Rawley open himself up to new beginnings and a second chance at love, and I could see Case find what has eluded him so far - someone who cares for him not because of what he can do for them, but for who he is. And don't we all want that, too?


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

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