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review 2020-05-31 10:31
The Book of Revelations
The Book of Revelations - Shanna Lauffey

by Shanna Lauffey


This is the final episode of a ten volume series. I should say serial because it's continuous and the books are best read in order.


I seldom read a series all the way through, but this one kept my interest and left me feeling very satisfied. Probably the most climactic drama was in episode nine and the series could have stopped there, but having read this one now I have to say, yeah it was needed.


There are some new elements in Kallie's life as well as connections to old ones. Her character development is nicely evolved in this one and all the loose ends of the series are tied up neatly. I was happy to see Marcus back in the picture and I finally understand Connor, who has been a bit of an enigma in recent episodes.


I do wonder about back story on some of the peripheral characters, but that just shows how invested I got into this world. If the author ever writes more stories about these characters like Anne Rice did with some of her vampires, I'll definitely want to read them!

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review 2020-05-30 18:47
The Terror & White Face
The Terror (The Detective Club) - Martin Edwards,Edgar Wallace

Ah, this was such a nice surprise...there are two stories in this book The Terror and White Face

I seriously should maybe think about reading book descriptions rather than just be seduced by the pretty covers of books.


Anyway, The Terror was your typical Edgar Wallace thriller focused on madness, crime, and darkest London. To me Wallace didn't write noir as much as a special kind of Gothic crime, including damsels in distress, castles, secret passages, ... oh, and a mad monk.


Yes, the plot is silly, the characters are two-dimensional, and many of the other aspect are utterly ridiculous, but this is just the sort of crime caper one sometimes needs. So, what if it made me laugh out loud that one of the characters suffers from insanity for only exactly 2 hours every day? (Or was it 2 hours of sanity? Does it matter?)


I really liked this one. It reminded me a lot of the German screen adaptations of Wallace's work - they are hilariously, charmingly.....dated but they are great guilty pleasures.


White Face took a different approach to the "typical" Wallace story. Yes, this story is also based on organised crime at it's heart, but this one here seemed to be a lot close some of the stories written by Arthur Conan Doyle. There is a great twist, but there are also elements that seems to portray some of the crimes as the characters only choice, so almost ask for sympathy from the reader. 


It was an interesting change from other works by Wallace that I am familiar with and I love that the story was included in this book (edited by Martin Edwards) but the story was also quite long and drawn out, which didn't work well for me.


(Scene from the German screen adaptation of The Terror. Unfortunately, there are not many similarities between the film and the book.)

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text 2020-05-29 21:34
Reading progress update: I've read 1 out of 304 pages.
The Terror (The Detective Club) - Martin Edwards,Edgar Wallace

Such is the plight of the mood reader that I've been wondering for the last hour or so which book to pick for tonight. 


I really want to start Timm's Halbschatten but I need something light and easy to switch off from work. I really also want to start A Scream in Soho, but I don't think I want to read that one as a "quick fix". 

So, I found The Terror in the vaults of my audible library, which should be an adequately entertaining story.


Oh, and incidentally, this like the disappointing Murder by Matchlight is also set in black-out London. Maybe the book gods wanted to make up for something?

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review 2020-05-28 14:45
The Future Memory Man
The Future Memory Man: Episode Five of The Chronicles of the Harekaiian - Shanna Lauffey

by Shanna Lauffey


This is the fifth book in the series and the plot convolutions just get more interesting. One of the high points of this episode is that we finally meet Harlan, the time traveler Physicist who has been mentioned a few times since the beginning.


I love good science in a time travel novel and this one has obviously been well researched. I found myself looking up information on particle physics and finding books referred to that really exist. I now know a few names of top real life scientists in the field of temporal physics!


The beauty of it though, is that the story flows neatly despite the scientific information and it is accessible to the common person. I've never studied physics, but I followed just fine.


Apart from that, the character development continues to grow. There were multiple points of view and I'm starting to really get to know the subtleties of Marcus. We also get a look into some of Kallie's background and the changes that have happened over time with Connor start to come into focus.


It's tricky to review a book this far into a series because I don't want to write spoilers for previous episodes, but the plot deepens and takes some interesting turns. These are just getting better as they go along.


If you like time travel stories at all, read this series!

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review 2020-05-27 16:42
Wuthering Heights
Wuthering Heights - Emily Brontë

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The last time I recall someone telling me that a book was the greatest romance they ever read, they were speaking about "Fifty Shades of Grey." I was reluctant to even read this one because I knew that I probably wasn't going to like it. I started to read it and went, yep do not like. I gave this two stars honestly because it's engrossing to read even though I didn't like one character save the two servants (Nelly and Joseph). And I was pretty much luke-warm on Nelly for most of the book. I don't know, maybe this would have worked better if the story was told from Catherine or Heathcliff's point of view. Most of the story follows Nelly's POV and a man named Mr. Lockwood. 


"Wuthering Heights" begins in 1801 when a man named Lockwood begins the tale. Lockwood is a new tenant at Thrushcross Grange and he goes to pay a visit to his landlord a Mr. Heathcliff. Mr. Heathcliff lives in his home called Wuthering Heights. Lockwood is repelled by most of the household (same boy, same) and wonders at the young woman named Cathy that lives there and a young man that Cathy seems to despise named Hareton. When Lockwood stays overnight in Wuthering Heights, he finds the diary of a woman named Catherine Earnshaw and starts to wonder about the people who lived there. He eventually gets his housekeeper, Nelly to tell him about what went on at Wuthering Heights. Bronte then proceeds to take up the rest of the tale explaining about Catherine, her brother Hindley, Heathcliff and the Linton family. 


So, there's so much going on that the narrative told by Nelly doesn't help. Nelly is like the priest in Romeo and Juliet to me. Knows a lot about what is going on, but does nothing to help. 


I honestly don't get why women were swooning over Heathcliff. He's a bully and as much of a mess as Catherine. I do feel badly for how he was treated by Hindley, but he purposely went about trying to ruin people and play God with other characters.

Catherine seemed ridiculous to the extreme to me. I just imagine that the men fought over her because no one else was in the vicinity besides Isabella. 


Hindley I found to be terrible and I honestly pitied Edgar and Isabella. The last two are just used as chess pieces and don't seem to be viewed as people with real hope for love and a happy marriage. 

The writing was a bit tough to get through. It just didn't work for me at all as a Gothic romance. I really loved Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte so just figured this would work for me too. I think if the book had switched things up so that we stayed with one narrator this would have made things stronger. 


The flow was off. I think switching from narrator to another narrator and I think some other narrators (my brain shut off) it just made the story too unwieldy to follow after a while. 


The setting of Wuthering Heights sounds desolate and unforgiving though.

The ending just leaves you with a shake of your head. You are left thinking that maybe a cycle has been broken, but you wonder since once again, the families in this story are a hot mess.  

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