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review 2017-05-30 20:06
Really Good Medieval Romance
Desire - Amanda Quick

This was a really good medieval romance. I wonder why there are not that many of these out there anymore? When I was growing up I always saw a romance cover with a heroine (bosoms heaving) being clutched by a man with a sword with a castle in the background.

Ah well.

 

"Desire" has Lady Clare of the Isle of Desire being forced to wed after her father's death. Her guardian suggest that she marry Sir Gareth of Wyckmere or her closet neighbor, Sir Nicholas of Seaborn. Due to Lady Clare being abducted by Sir Nicholas a few months back and not caring for him, she feels like she's trapped between no good choices. But without realizing it, Lady Clare starts to develop feelings for Gareth and his knights that chose to ride alongside him. 

 

I have to say that I was more in love with the hero in this one. Gareth has an interesting backstory (no spoilers) but we know that he is a bastard that was raised in his father's household. All he wants is a place to call his own and a wife and he starts to see Clare and the rest of the people there as his to protect. 

Clare is kind of stupid. Yeah I said it. She has a hair trigger temper at times and sometimes does really dumb stuff that if this was a different kind of book would probably have caused Gareth to beat and or rape her (thank God that didn't happen). 

 

The two of them make a lot of sense and I can see why they were so strong together. The love scenes were pretty hot too though. 

 

With all of this going on we have a murder mystery to solve that could lead to Clare and Gareth's death as well. 

 

The writing is clever and I have to say that I laughed at the horrible songs that Clare's minstrel was playing. The rhyming was just bad. 

 

I thought the ending was abrupt though. We just go to Clare throwing down another gauntlet that Gareth doesn't call her out on (and honestly I would have) and then the book ends. Still give it five stars though. 

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review 2017-05-27 18:53
A wholly different kind of read for me…which was both a positive and a negative
The Clockwork Dynasty: A Novel - Daniel H. Wilson

Book Title:  The Clockwork Dynasty

Author:  Daniel H Wilson

Series:  Stand-Alone

Genre:  Steampunk

Publisher:  Doubleday

Setting:  Past and present; including Oregon, London, Russia, and China

SourceI received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

 

 

 

Add to Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 

Book Theme Song

(link will take you to my tumblr post with video)

Fake it by Seether  --It's so perfect for Peter & the other avtomats…it's also one of my all time favs.

Who's to know if your soul will fade at all

The one you sold to fool the world

You lost your self-esteem along the way

Yeah

And just fake it if your out of direction

Fake it if you don't belong

Fake it if you feel like a infection

Woah your such a f*ckin' hypocrite

 

 

 

OVERALL RATING:  3.7/5 STARS GRADE=B

 

My Thoughts

 

 

The idea behind The Clockwork Dynasty is an ingenious one, but the execution fell a little short for me.  I just couldn't stay focused when reading this, I had to reread some passages again and again.  I feel like this could have been because it was not my usual type of read.  But…Idk???

 

 

I also never felt like I was invested in the characters, especially June…why does June seem so inconsequential.  I wanted more depth from them.  So, maybe I might have wanted to cheer them on.  So…overall this is a imaginative story, it just didn't have enough heart for me.  The cover, though, is absolutely spectacular. 

 

Ratings Breakdown

 

Plot:  4.2/5

Main Characters:  3.5/5

Secondary Characters:  3.5/5

The Feels:  3.5/5

Addictiveness:  3.5/5

Theme or Tone:  4/5

Flow (Writing Style):  3/5

Backdrop (World Building):  4.3/5

Originality:  5/5

Book Cover:  5/5

Ending:  4/5  Cliffhanger:  Kind of does, actually.

 

 

Will I continue this series?  Maybe…if it continues, and it seems like it should.

 

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review 2017-05-17 09:00
A Sorceress of His Own by Dianne Duvall
A Sorceress of His Own (The Gifted Ones Book 1) - Dianne Duvall

For the past seven years, since she was but sixteen, Alyssa has served Lord Dillon, the Earl of Westcott, as his wisewoman and healer without the man being aware that 'tis not the wisewoman that had served his father and his father before him that hides under the umbral robes...Then, acting out of love for the man, Alyssa makes the ultimate sacrifice, healing his mortal wounds, ending at Death's door herself. In order for him to save her, Dillon removes her robes and discovers her deception...

But instead of taking offense, he gains much, much more.


Ms Duvall was a new-to-me author, and I must say my first foray into her "world" didn't disappoint. That's not to say the story was perfect—far from it, but the flaws didn't completely overshadow the strengths. The premise, despite this particular plot device being rehashed over and over throughout the history of literature, was solid, and the initial few chapters (before the big reveal) offered some great character development, and good, steady pacing.

Unfortunately the pacing slowed down drastically after Alyssa's robes came off, and the story started suffering from "overstuffing". A redundant scene here and there, a dialogue or inner monologue (mostly about how to overcome the many obstacles on the road to happiness) too many and you quickly end up with a bogged down story that reads like you're trying to waddle through thick mud...
And there was definitely too much angst in the second half of the book. Legitimate angst (to a degree) about a problem that ended up being solved too easily. I felt a little cheated when everything ended up nicely tied in a bow. After all the angst and drama, it felt too sweet and rather sugary the way it ended.

But still, the story was solid, the writing and narrative style was good, the use of "Old English" wasn't much of an issue once I passed chapter one, and the characters were well-developed, incorporated nicely into the story and working very well together as an ensemble.

It could've done with a little more editing to weed out the unnecessary stuff, but overall, it was a very enjoyable read.

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review 2017-05-10 18:02
My Highland Rebel, Amanda Forester
My Highland Rebel - Amanda Forester

I really enjoyed this historical romance. I received this book for free and I voluntarily chose to review it. I've given it a 5 * rating. This book pulled me in from the beginning. The hero was one really busy guy.The heroine was pretty active too. Id say there was a lot going on in this story. I enjoyed them both but with reservations.Not for the under 18 readers mostly because of the violence. What a big adventure this story was.

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review 2017-05-03 21:33
The Devil's Hunt
The Devil's Hunt - Paul Doherty

A Medieval Mystery featuring Hugh Corbett

 

England, 1303

 

Ascham opened his eyes. the library was dark. He tried again to scream but the sound died on his lips. The candle, flickering under its metal cap on the table, shed a small pool of light and Ascham glimpsed the piece of parchment the assassin had tossed onto the table. Ascham realised what had brought about his death: he'd recognised the truth but he'd been stupid ebough to allow his searches to be known. If only he had a pen! His hand grasped the wound bubbling in his chest. He wept and crawled painfully across the floor towards the table. He seized the parchment and, with his dying strength, carefully hauled himself up to etch out the letters – but the pool of light seemed to be dimming. He'd lost the feeling in his legs, which were stiffening, like bars of iron.
'Enough,' he whispered. 'Ah, Jesus ...'
Ascham closed his eyes, coughed and died as the blood bubbled on his lips.

 

When the book opens, Hugh Corbett is at home in Leighton, in Essex, enjoying his peaceful life as Lord of the Manor, even if that does involve the odd hanging (as on the first page of Chapter 1) which he certainly does not enjoy, though everyone else seems to. But this country idyll is rudely shattered when the King, Edward I, arrives at the manor house demanding that Hugh return to his service immediately.

 

A demand from a king, though phrased as a request, is in reality an order, and in the case of this king, to cross him when he is in this mood would be to invite disaster. So Sir Hugh, along with his henchman Ranulf-atte-Newgate and their friend-servant-squire Maltote, are despatched to Oxford, where Sparrow Hall is in a state of turmoil. Two murders have already been committed there. Left near the second corpse was a parchment announcing "The Bellman fears neither King nor clerk [...] The Bellman will ring the truth and all shall hear it."

 

Meanwhile, outside the college, in the city, this Bellman has been posting proclamations attacking the King and claiming that Simon de Montfort was in the right of it when he took up arms against the King. And these proclamations purport to be emanating from Sparrow Hall, which the masters there all fervently deny. Well, they would.

 

Also outside the Hall, another seemingly separate series of murders has been taking place. In each case, an old beggar from the city, by definition helpless and defenceless, has been taken out into the forest and decapitated and his head has been hung from the branches of a tree. Sir Hugh finds reason to believe they were not actually killed in the forest but taken there – from Sparrow Hall, which would link them in some strange way with the Bellman and the murder of the two masters.

 

Another perfect medieval whodunnit from Paul Doherty. Not a word is wasted, and the excitement never flags for a moment. Nor can one possibly guess (without cheating!) who the Bellman really is.

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