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review 2020-02-15 02:44
Small Magics
Small Magics - Ilona Andrews

When I saw here on BookLikes that Sweep with Me was out, I went to Ilona Andrew's website to find out more, and noticed the release of a new anthology, published by Subterranean Press.  Yes please!


This is a compilation of the short stories Ilona Andrews has written, all previously published elsewhere, and for the first time in print, all the Curren POV's Gordon Andrews has written and posted on their website.  Interspersed are 3? full color illustrations.


It's a nice book - not the most impressive I've seen put out by Subterranean, but a good solid book.  I'd read some of the stories before, but enough of them were new to me to make me appreciate having bought it.


My only gripe with the book is with the Curran POVs.  As a character, these stories don't always flatter Curran, but that's trivial.  What is really disappointing, though, is the poor copy-editing of the Curran stories.  On the website, they're clear to state that the stories were written for fun, not edited, yada yada.  And that's totally understandable.  But I'd have though when it comes to publishing a limited release, numbered, signed, illustrated edition, the publisher, if not the authors themselves, would have wanted to take the time and make the effort to correct, at the very least, the most glaring omissions and errors (lots of the, a, an articles missing, or misplaced).


Ah well, a good collection that might have been great, but still welcome on my shelves.

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review 2020-02-15 01:35
Sweep with Me (Innkeeper Chronicles Novella)
Sweep with Me - Ilona Andrews

Fun; brief but it packs a punch at the end.  This one is for those who've already read the other Innkeeper Chronicle books, though there's enough 'tell' sprinkled throughout that a first-timer wouldn't be totally confused.  They would be totally spoiled for the others though, as there are spoilers to previous plots in the text.


A lot of the secondary cast are 'away' for this story, so Orro gets a bit more attention, and it appears Dina is making new friends.  Not sure if we'll see them again, as this novella has a pretty tidy HEA ending, but they'll be welcome additions to any future Innkeeper books.

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review 2019-12-26 10:10
Stiletto (Book 2 of the Checquy Files)
Stiletto - Daniel O'Malley

Not as good as the first, but definitely as rambling.  I listened to the audio, straight from the first book, The Rook and the narrator changed.  Moira Quirk does a credible job, but I listened to both too close together not to notice the difference in voices and styles and it was a bit jarring.


I was also disappointed that this story has multiple POVs and very little page time is given over to Myfanwy Thomas, even though the summary would seem to indicate she's the central character.  She is not.  Mostly this story is told from the POV of a grafter character.  Understanding came before acceptance, but once I did accept it, the story was interesting enough to keep me listening.

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review 2019-12-26 09:56
The Rook (Book 1 of the Checquy Files)
The Rook - Daniel O'Malley

Ok, I did as Darth Pendant suggested; I read the book then I watched the trailer for the new Starz series.  She's right - the trailer makes absolutely no sense.  Or, at least, based on what I saw in the trailer, has very little to do with the book itself. 


I also agree with DP that the book was good overall, but omg, the rambling backstory.  I swapped back and forth between the printed book and the audio, checked out from the library, and the audio made the rambling backstory feel, at times, interminable.  The narrator was good though.


Overall, I enjoyed it enough* that I immediately checked out the follow up, Stiletto.


*Imagine my surprise when I discovered Daniel O'Malley is an Australian author.

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review 2019-10-10 07:32
Game of Bones (Sara Booth Delaney, #20)
Game of Bones - Carolyn Haines

After 19 really solid, enjoyable books, this one tanked for me.  It's still ok, hence my 3 stars, but comparatively speaking, nowhere near as good as the book that came before it.


Contributing to my general disappointment was the feeling that Haines just never got a handle on the plot.  It's a really interesting one about Indian burial mounds, archeology and curses, but it never gelled and in fact went somewhat around the bend in terms of incredulity, character angst, and abuse of dues ex machina.  The series has always had a light touch of the paranormal in Jitty, the ghost that haunts Sarah Booth, but the author charges past the lightly paranormal line, and blazes right into unbelievable miracles, and then she throws in some science fiction just to really stomp on any believability the plot may have had going for it.


I didn't hate it, and it's not generally bad; it's just not anywhere near as complex and interesting an instalment as previous books have been.  Everyone gets a phone-it-in in a long running series, and it took Haines 20 books before she cashed hers in.  I'm confident that should there be a 21, it will be back to the high standards of previous books.


I read this book for Halloween Bingo's New Release square.

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