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review 2016-12-01 13:57
ARC Review: Analog To Digital by Posy Roberts
Analog to Digital (2016 Advent Calendar - Bah Humbug) - Posy Roberts

Cute and sweet short about an established couple, Toby and Ethan, who are keeping secrets from each other. Which, as we all know, is never a good thing in a relationship, amirite?


Ethan's secret is that despite his assertions of the opposite, after many years in love with Toby, he wants to marry the man. Toby, however, has said many, many, many times that he has no desire to get married. At all. Ever.


Ethan's sister got married in a whirlwind ceremony, and now wants to renew her vows with a lavish wedding ceremony. This makes Ethan sad and upset - his sister will have two weddings in less than a year, while he won't have any, because the man he loves doesn't want to marry him at all.


While they're in Minnesota with Ethan's family for Christmas, Ethan starts to have doubts as he watches Toby spend time with his sister and his mother, and basically feels ignored. He promised not to work so much while they're on holiday, but with Toby gone from the house, Ethan doesn't feel like he has much else to do.


There are plenty of hints between the lines as to what Toby might be up to, and this reader figured it out early on, but Ethan is oblivious.


I liked their relationship, and it was clear that they truly loved each other. The author drew her characters very nicely, and while this short was but a glimpse, we got sufficient backstory woven seamlessly into the plot to understand where both of these men were coming from.


Ethan's family was well done too, and they enhanced this story quite a bit.


I'm sure you're wondering what Toby's secret is, right? Well, I'm not telling, so you should hop on over to the Dreamspinner site to buy this little book so you can find out.


It's worth it.



** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

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review 2016-07-18 21:17
"Strictly Analog" by Richard Levesque - original SF Noir detective story in a future California after the breakup of the USA
Strictly Analog - Richard Levesque

"Strictly Analog" is a twisty noir detective story, set in a cyberpunk California of the future, that works as both a detective story and as character-driven cyberpunk. 


Ted Lomax, a veteran of the Border Wars between California and Nevada, lives in a digital world where everyone is on-line all the time through the IYZ (eyewear computers) that he can't use because he has only one eye. Making a virtue of necessity, he earns his living by investigating "off the grid", selling his services as, "Strictly Analog".


Science Fictions fans will enjoy how well this future world, where California has become a Corporate entity and won its independence from the rest of the US, is built. The techie toys are plausible, well explained and salted with humour (I loved the idea of the drivers of the almost silent electric cars of the future choosing a "drive tone" for their vehicle.)


Detective story fans will enjoy Ted Lomax's sarcasm and his determination and his (literally) crippling  back-story as well as the strongly noir tone of the story and the well thought through plot.


I listened to the audiobook version where Steven J Cohen's narration added an edgy twist to the text that matched the mood of the book perfectly.


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review 2015-01-19 05:00
Gollywood, Here I Come!
Gollywood, Here I Come! - Terry John Barto

Gobbleville resident Anamazie wants to be a star. And she becomes one.


The problem is that at no point is Anamazie seen to be working for her success. It all falls in her lap, apparently through no action of her own. (For example, Anamazie is edged out for the win on Gobbleville's Got Talent, but she's talent-scouted for Gollywood anyway.) The book's stated message is "You can do anything you put your mind to," but the one I actaully heard was, "Don't worry, success will fall into your lap if you want it really bad."


Illustrator Mattia Cerato has given the rather flat story a lift. The images are bright and saturated, with lots of fun background details.


What Went Well

  • Illustrations


Even Better If:

  • Anamazie had to work for her success
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review SPOILER ALERT! 2015-01-11 06:07
Top Secret Twenty-One
Top Secret Twenty-One - Janet Evanovich

This is, of course, the last of the Stephanie Plum books, with all the mayhem, automotive damage, and slapstick that implies.


That's as far as I can go without venturing into spoiler territory.



I was expecting - hoping - for some romantic resolution in this last book, and I feel sort of emotionally cock-blocked that I didn't get it! She could have chosen Morelli, the smart choice! She could have chosen Ranger, the HOT CHOICE! They could have had a kinky threesome! Somebody could have DIED TO SAVE HER. ANYTHING, MY GOD, SOMETHING! AGGGGGGGH!


  • What Went Well:
  • "You think about marrying me?" "Well, at least sharing my closet." "It's a nice closet." (however that went).


Even Better If:

  • There had been Ranger sexytimes since the vordo. I could be remembering this wrong, but I'm pretty sure that was the last of the Ranger sexytimes. THIS WAS THE LAST BOOK, DAMMIT.
(spoiler show)


Ok, I feel better now.

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