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review 2018-10-17 15:08
REVIEW BY MERISSA - Desperate Measures (Aspen Falls #5) by Melissa Pearl & Anna Cruise
Desperate Measures (Aspen Falls #5) - Anna Cruise,Melissa Pearl

Desperate Measures is the fifth book in the Aspen Falls series, and we finally get Camilla's story. She has made regular appearances throughout this series, but hasn't as yet had her say. She does in this one, and it was definitely worth waiting for!

Cam grew up on the wrong side of the tracks (so to speak) and was determined to change her life, and to make a difference. She does this, but not without heartbreak. She leaves behind the love of her young life, knowing he is in with the gangs that are rampant. She walks away, and does make a difference. Alex has always remained in her thoughts though, even when she tries to forget him. So when he turns up, bloody and battered, will she help him, or arrest him?

This was a great story, with plenty of depth to both the situations and the characters. There were no editing or grammatical errors to this story that I noticed. I enjoyed the banter between Cam and Alex, as well as the situations they found themselves in. Even though she is a police officer, Cam did across with a healthy dose of naivety at times.

With enough action to keep you turning the pages, this was thoroughly engrossing from start to finish. Absolutely recommended by me.

This is a series that I am thoroughly enjoying. Can't wait for the next one.

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and my comments here are my honest opinion. *

Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!

Source: archaeolibrarian.wixsite.com/website/single-post/2018/08/24/Desperate-Measures-Aspen-Falls-5-by-Melissa-Pearl-Anna-Cruise
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text 2018-10-13 22:55
Reading progress update: I've read 316 out of 316 pages.
Anna Dressed in Blood - Kendare Blake

I wish I'd been able to keep up my original momentum on this, because reading it over the space of a week or two probably would have been better for the overall flow than the multi-week break I ended up taking. Still, I enjoyed this. I'm also glad that I didn't read it when it first came out, because the ending was easier to deal with knowing that there's a sequel and that it's already out. I don't know when I'll end up reading it, but I do plan to get to it at some point.


I was originally going to use this for my Ghost Stories square, but that's long since been taken by something else. So I'll be using this for my Supernatural square instead, which means I have an exciting Halloween Bingo update post coming up.

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review 2018-10-10 13:13
One Wild Winter's Eve by Anne Barton
One Wild Winter's Eve - Anne Barton

Lady Rose Sherbourne is quiet, proper and following the rules of the ton. No one would suspect there's anything remotely similar to passion under her placid exterior, but as she embarks on a quest to find out what happened to her mother, she discovers there's nothing more liberating than following one's heart...

I must confess, I much preferred the Honeycote portion of this series than the Sherbourne one. I simply felt there were things missing in the last two installments. Like spunk, spark, humor and passion.

Unlike her sister Rose was much more sedate and proper, but she was too placid, downright vapid at the beginning of the story. She captured my interest once she went rogue and sprung her boyfriend out of jail, but then almost immediately went back to huddling in on herself, fretting and feeling sorry for herself. She didn't appear to have much agency, most of her decisions were based on Charles, the hero.
Who was rather bland himself. I never got to really know him, beside in context of his puppy-like devotion to Rose and he also failed to have anything to do that would make him an individual instead of part of the couple with Rose.

The story only came alive once they were in the company either of Lady Boneville or Rose's family who at least brought some spark to the proceedings.

I liked the suspense sub-plot and would've appreciated it if it was developed a little further and more fully instead of only serving as catalyst to bring Charles and Rose together.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-10-10 11:02
Godblind - Anna Stephens
Godblind - Anna Marie Stephens

This is one of those books where I'm glad there's the ability (on Booklikes, at least!) to give half-stars, as there were quite a few things I liked about Godblind but also some things that didn't quite work for me. Fortunately, I got my copy from the local library so I'm not left feeling like I spent my money on something that I probably won't read again and am also only reading more in this series if I can get them from the same source...


The basic premise of Godblind is that there's two lots of gods, one light and one dark, the latter and their followers having been driven out a while back and desperate to return and crush everyone. The book starts with an attempted rape, the subject of which turns the tables on her attacker and then flees into the snow, only to be rescued by a man who is tormented by visions from both sets of gods, but mostly the dark ones. Their followers are working both overtly and covertly, undermining the current rulers and plotting to replace them with those who will restore the 'right' way of doing things, shedding as much blood as necessary along the way.


I fell off the grimdark wagon a while back, though I had enjoyed some series that were part of its early incarnation - too much blood and mayhem for the sake of it, too much 'but people are nasty therefore we must go into gory details in our fiction' for my liking. For me, Godblind skirts the edge of going too far - there's one particular torture scene that left me wincing and if there had been more occurrences like that in this volume, I probably would have passed on the rest of the book and series. 


The other thing I didn't like about the book was that it felt quite choppy and I struggled to keep track at times of who was who. It's all written from various different people's points of view, and some of the segments (I can hardly call them chapters, at the lengths involved) are quite brief, which left the story feeling a little disjointed. I think this was partly why I didn't really 'click' with most of the characters as I felt jolted out of their experience just as I was getting to grips with them - this was particularly true for Rillirin, who is set up to be one of the main characters of the series. 


On the other hand, there's good work done in terms of thinking about and setting up the world-building - I was particularly engaged with the palace intrigues as people's true motivations are revealed and plots spark or fizzle out. Hopefully the characters who I cared about won't get killed off and whenever my local library gets the sequel (Darksoul) I may well pick it up for the princely sum of 47p, which is our current hold fee. 


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review 2018-10-09 17:24
Scandalous Summer Nights by Anne Barton
Scandalous Summer Nights (A Honeycote Series Book 3) - Anne Barton

Lady Olivia Sherbourne has been in love with James Averill, her brother's solicitor and friend, for a decade, but the man is completely oblivious. She always thought she had time to make him notice her, make him fall in love, but that time is running out. James is on his way to Egypt. For two years. And Olivia finally takes off her gloves and decides to fight dirty.

This series certainly is hit-and-miss. I had in inkling I would particularly like this one, since I found Olivia to be too bratty and self-centered in the previous two books, but I thought that once she got her own book, her own story, she would grow on me.

Well, she didn't. She was a self-centered, spoiled brat for more than half her story, pushing and prodding, demanding to have it her own way, disregarding what others, namely the man she supposedly loved, might want and wish. And once she got it, she still wasn't satisfied. She truly reminded me of a spoiled child who, once she gets her toy, she doesn't want it anymore.
And, unlike the previous two novels, she didn't grow on me, because she didn't learn anything. She still got her way in the end without much suffering. She merely proved that all she needed was a fit and everything will be handed to her.
I would actually pity her hero, but I didn't much care for him either. He was bland a dull, without much character or agency, beyond catering to Olivia, her agenda, and her story. And I didn't buy his about face about her feelings either. It was too abrupt. It would've worked if he was infatuated from the start, but he actually noticed her only once she stopped flitting about him. Which makes him rather self-centered as well, come to think of it. He started pursuing her only once she stopped (at least outright) pursuing him.

In the end, I guess they pretty much deserved one another. And I didn't really buy the romance/love thing. They certainly worked better as friends with possible crushes on one another than lovers. But maybe that's just me and my general dislike of both of them.

I liked the supporting cast, though. Granted, they were relegated to the sidelines mostly, but it was still a pleasure seeing them and getting to know the new additions to the "family".

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