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review 2017-10-14 16:32
The Malice by Peter Newman
The Malice - Peter C. Newman

Series: The Vagrant #2

 

Years have passed since the events of The Vagrant. I'm not certain of how many, but one review I found said it had been twelve years, which is consistent with how Vesper acts. Vesper, the little baby from the first book, takes centre stage as the main character of this one. When the Vagrant, whom she calls Father, doesn't answer Gamma's sword's call (the Malice), Vesper tries to take it to those who would help. Instead of being accompanied by the old goat, Vesper takes along the old goat's baby kid who is adorable and instrumental in the story (and not just as bait). The kid held the book at three stars, despite some of the clumsiness in parts.

 

This is basically an alternate fantasy world with technology that has fallen into a kind of Dystopia after the world is invaded by the infernals through the Breach (a kind of crack in reality). Infernals take over human bodies (sometimes in gross combinations) in order to survive in the new world. Something massive that's being called the Yearning is making its way through the Breach with potentially dire results for everybody, even for the infernals already there, halfbreeds and tainted humans. It is hoped that the Malice will be able to stop the Yearning, which is why Vesper journeys south.

 

Despite feeling fuzzy on how much time has passed since the events of the first book, I'm pretty confident that the source I found stating twelve years is pretty close if not spot on because Vesper certainly acts like she's twelve or thirteen and by the end of the book she's physically grown a bit. So I'm comfortable using this for the "Chilling Children" square for the Halloween Bingo. It could also be used the "Supernatural" and "Genre: Horror" squares, I think.

 

I know I mentioned that the kid is adorable but he's seriously adorable.

 

Previous update:

13 %

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review 2017-04-06 01:36
The Big Over Easy by Jasper Fforde
The Big Over Easy - Jasper Fforde

Series: Nursery Crime #1

 

The mystery aspect was somewhat interesting, so I kept reading to find out the whodunnit, but most of the humour fell flat for me. Mary Mary's hero worship of Chymes got tiresome real fast and Jack's home life was pretty dull to read about. I'm not saying I really wanted him to be a divorced alcoholic or anything, but those parts of the book kinda dragged. I haven't decided whether I'll read the next one.

 

The solution to the mystery was...mad.

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text 2017-04-01 14:30
Reading progress update: I've read 13%.
The Big Over Easy - Jasper Fforde

This books is oscillating between ''somewhat interesting' and 'needs an eyesprain warning'.

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review 2016-09-17 21:07
Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop
Murder of Crows - Anne Bishop

Series: The Others #2

 

It’s interesting to go back and look at what I wrote about the first book in the series, Written in Red. If I may quote myself, one my comments about the next book in the series was,

“I’m hoping that the writing will have smoothed out so that I can have a more immersive book experience.”

It didn’t happen. If anything, it got worse. A lot worse. This time the plot suffered.

 

I debated about the rating for a long time, but the books that I rate two stars are generally better than this. It was disappointing, because it actually started off fairly strongly with a series of Crow attacks. It’s also misleading because we never follow up with any of the characters involved in the attacks. We never see the aftermath of the scene in the kitchen. And later on, the setting isn’t sufficiently described and we’re left wondering how some crows actually died until halfway through the scene. And I don’t think it was suspense: it was sloppiness. Also, BOW (Box On Wheels) was even used several pages before it was defined for new readers.

 

But we don’t even spend that much time on the attacks, because what’s apparently really important is to wade through a series of really awkward conversations that made me want to bang my head against my ereader. And by awkward, I’m referring to the actual dialogue. It just went on forever (or a hundred pages). It’s like the books is saying, ‘We don’t want to read about the interesting stuff, dear Reader. These movie nights and teen-style “interventions” are far more important.’ It kind of makes me wonder how this book got published since it reads more like an early draft than a final product.

 

The prophecies were pretty bad too. They were just a series of images that were used to outwit the enemy. Nothing really happened because the prophecy always saved the day. Even the politics weren’t handled very well and I never felt any real apprehension about how things were going to turn out. I’m surprised I didn’t sprain an eyeball. We’re even subjected to an explanation of a character’s nickname (Shady) when that character is never mentioned again.

 

All this wasn’t enough to make me declare that I was rage-quitting the series, but I’m not convinced that I’d find the rest of it interesting. Meg is transforming from an understandably vanilla character into an incredibly boring one and I’m warily side-eyeing her potential love interest. It’s devolving into typical urban fantasy territory despite the interesting setting.

 

All in all, this could have been a good book, but it really wasn’t. Maybe I would still like the series if someone had told me to skip this installment because I really hope this is skippable. So do yourself a favour and if you didn’t adore book one, skip this one. I’m sure the next book will fill you in enough without having to suffer through this one.

 

My updates:

17%

70%

100%

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text 2016-09-17 14:33
Reading progress update: I've read 340 out of 340 pages.
Murder of Crows - Anne Bishop

Finished! Yay!

 

I was originally going to use this for the "Scary Women (Authors)" square for the Halloween Bingo on the basis that the Others's world was full of vampires, werewolves, werebears, and other things that go bump in the night. But once again, after reading it, I'm no longer sure it fits. Bishop's managed to de-fang most of her scary creatures.

 

It's not a wasted read, since I did plan on reading it, but I'm not sure where else to put it. I could use it on the "Free Space", I guess, but I was originally planning on putting Wicked or an extra mystery there (even though I haven't actually read my mystery square yet). I'm not sure if "Supernatural" would fly on the basis that Meg's prophecies have a supernatural element to them.

 

Oh well. I'll think about it.

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