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review 2017-04-25 00:05
I would recommend this one!
Un-Conventional - Tony Talbot

Well this was a fun little tale. I thoroughly enjoyed the characters and even the backstory of a slightly strange sci-fi show with a small but loyal following of fans, even though I'm not a huge sci-fi fan myself.

This was amusing and very enjoyable. If you feel like trying one of Tony's short stories I would recommend this one.

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review 2017-04-22 21:31
A book for readers who enjoy science-fiction that asks big questions, with religious undertones, and lots of action
As Wings Unfurl - Arthur M. Doweyko

I thank the author who contacted me thanks to Lit World Interviews for offering me an ARC copy of his novel that I freely chose to review.

I am not a big reader of science-fiction (perhaps because I don’t seem to have much patience these days for lengthy descriptions and world building and I’m more interested in books that focus on complex characters) so I was doubtful when the author suggested I review it, but the angel plot and the peculiarities of the story won me over. There are many things I enjoyed in this book but I’m not sure that it was the book for me.

As I’ve included the description and it is quite detailed (I was worried about how I could write about the book without revealing any spoilers but, many of the things I was worried about are already included in the description) I won’t go into the ins and outs of the story. The novel starts as a thriller, set in 1975. A private detective has taken a compromising photo and that puts him in harm’s way. Apple, the main character, seems to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, although later events make us question this and wonder if perhaps what happens was preordained. One of the interesting points in the novel, for me, was that the main character was a Vietnam War veteran, amputee (he lost a leg) and now addicted to Morphine. He also experiences symptoms of PTSD. Although his vivid dreams and flashbacks slowly offer us some background information, and the whole adventure gives him a new perspective on life and a love interest, I found it difficult to fully connect with the character. It was perhaps due to the fast action and the changes in setting and point of view that make it difficult to fully settle one’s attention on the main protagonists. One of the premises of the story is that Angela, the mysterious character who is his ersatz guardian angel, has known him all his life. She is oddly familiar to him, and she decides to give up her privileges and her life mission because of him, but as Angela’s interest in him precedes the story, there is no true development of a relationship and readers don’t necessarily understand why they are attracted to each other from the start.

The story, written in the third person, is told mostly from Apple’s point of view but there are also two other characters, from Tibet, Shilog, a farmer, and Yowl, what most of us would think of as a Yeti, but that we later learn is a member of a native Earth species. In my opinion, these two characters are more fully realised, as we don’t have any previous knowledge or any expectations of who they are, and they work well as a new pair of eyes (two pairs of eyes) for the readers, as they start their adventure truly clueless as to what is going on, and the situation is as baffling to them as it is to us. They are also warm and genuinely amusing and they offer much welcome comic relief. They are less bogged down by conventions and less worried about their own selves.

I enjoyed also the background story and the underlying reasoning behind the presence of the “angels” (aliens) in the world. It does allow for interesting debates as to what makes us human and what our role on Earth is. How this all fits in with traditional religions and beliefs is well thought out and it works as a plot element. It definitely had me thinking.

I said before that one of the problems I had with some fantasy and science-fiction is my lack of patience with world building and detailed descriptions. In this case, though, other than some descriptions about the Tibetan forest and mountains, I missed having a greater sense of location. The characters moved a lot from one place to the next and, even if you were paying attention, sometimes it was difficult to follow where exactly the action was taking place (especially because some of the episodes depended heavily on secret passages, doors, locked rooms…) and I had to go back a few times to check, in case I had missed some change of location inadvertently. (This might not be a problem for people who are used to reading more frantically paced action stories.) I guess there are two possible reading modes I’d recommend for this story; either pay very close attention or go with the flow and enjoy the ride.

I really enjoyed the baddie. Dane is awesome. I don’t mind the bad characters that are victims of their circumstances or really conflicted about what they do, but every so often I like a convinced baddie, who takes no prisoners and goes all the way. She is not without justification either, and later we learn something that puts a different spin on her behaviour (I didn’t find it necessary but it does fit in with the overall story arc). The irony of her character and how she uses human institutions and religions to subvert the given order is one of my favourite plot points and she is another source of humour, although darker in this case.

All in all, this is a book for readers who enjoy science-fiction that asks big questions, with religious undertones, lots of action and not too worried about the psychological makeup of the main characters. Ah, and if you love stories about Bigfoot or the Yeti, you’ll love this one.

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review 2017-04-20 14:30
Arc review: Saving the Space Pirate (Ruby Robbins Sexy Space Odyssey #3) by Nina Croft
Saving the Space Pirate (Ruby Robbins’ Sexy Space Odyssey) - Nina Croft

Third and final installment in the fast-paced, action-packed, sometimes incongruous but still funny at others saga.

Ruby and Killian live another day only to find themselves back in the lion’s den, attempting to complete another suicide rescue mission, only this time Killian is no longer a pirate but a man with a purpose and a sense of honor. Against all odds, the mission is a success, there are more surprises along the way, and Ruby and Killian find some kind of HFN.

I thought the serial as a whole was pretty interesting, if only there would have been more story as opposed to so much insta-lust and gratuitous sex then I would have liked it more. Then again this is more of an erotica so I'll take it as is and I'm sure other readers will enjoy it much more. 

*** I received this book from the author at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.***

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review 2017-04-18 22:54
Review: Stolen by the Space Pirate (Ruby Robbins Sexy Space Odyssey #2) by Nina Croft
Stolen by the Space Pirate (Ruby Robbins’ Sexy Space Odyssey) - Nina Croft

Ruby finds herself back where it all started. Her mission may be back on track but now she may be in more danger than ever before.

Here we get to see more of the other creatures Ruby and her friends have to deal with and the villains they have to defeat. There were a few twists along the way that kept the story interesting and a pretty awesome, action-packed, nail-biting ending, which was another cliffhanger.

We also got to see Killian in a more redeeming light, which was good of course. Unfortunately Ruby continued to act like a child in a chocolate factory regardless of everything of what was happening to her. I mean, I get that there are certain things that get some people off, and hey! More power to them for enjoying what they like when it comes to sex. However, I wished she started acting more like a hero and less like a lioness in heat. All in all a good continuation to the story and I’ll definitely read the final book.

*** I received this book from the author at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.***

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review 2017-04-15 01:32
A different kind of robopocalypse
Waking Gods: Book 2 of The Themis Files - Sylvain Neuvel

By chance, I saw that the second book in The Themis Files series by Sylvain Neuvel had hit the shelves. You may recall that I posted a review of the first book, Sleeping Giants, not quite a year ago and I really enjoyed it. It's a unique story that blends aliens and robots *shudder* with a heaping dose of science-y adventure and intrigue. In the sequel, Waking Gods, we're reunited with our mysterious narrator who continues to record his interactions with the team tasked with uncovering the mysteries surrounding Themis, the robot pieced together and purportedly left on earth by an alien race in the distant past. In the first book, the lid was blown off the super secret agency housing the alien creation. This book starts 10 years later where Themis and the EDC (Earth Defense Corps) are now household names. However, years of study haven't revealed all of the answers about this alien race or why they left pieces of a scattered robot across the globe. In fact, Dr. Rose Franklin is starting to wonder if maybe they were never supposed to find the robot at all... It becomes an even more pressing issue when another giant robot (larger than Themis) materializes in the middle of London. Is it a sign that they want to make contact? Is it a threat? How will the human race react? All of this and much more is explored in this book and if you thought the first was fast-paced and action packed then this one is sure to knock your socks off. 10/10

Source: readingfortheheckofit.blogspot.com
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