logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: baby-shower
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2018-05-12 03:12
Yup. Baby Shower. A literal baby shower, just what every fantasy series needs(?)
Baby Shower - Cassandra Khaw

Huh. I'm still trying to figure out this series, I admit, but the one thing I didn't figure was that one episode would feature a party soaked in political intrigue. But it works -- it really, really works.

 

Yeah, there's plenty of magic and swordplay in this series. But there's almost as much going on when it comes to diplomacy and politics. It's subtle, it's harder to follow in this world than you might be used to (but it's getting easier the more time we spend in this series) -- but it's rewarding. This episode's focal event is the perfect setting to focus on the subtle games and moves going on with these characters.

 

Michiko seems to take a step in a constructive direction -- and if this goes like I think it will, I might actually like her as a character. Ojo's still the most interesting character in this series (with the possible exception of Michiko's secret relative, but he's interesting for completely different reasons), and I continue to like how he's being used. I think I might like Kris a bit more now than I have soon.

 

One thing the series seems clear about is that Lavinia is a bad person -- good warrior, savvy at her job, but she's a bad person. Maybe not King Joffrey bad, but someone in that vein. Which is odd, it seems that the series is going out of its way to show you things from (for example) Ojo's point of view, but also what Penelope, Kris and Michiko think of him and his actions. The same goes for everyone but for Lavinia. There's only one perspective presented for her. Now, honestly, I'm not sure I want to look too far into her head -- so I'm not sure this is a bad thing, but it just strikes me as odd.

 

This has a great closing line -- it definitely made me want to read on. The episode on the whole does that, too -- by the end, I probably feel more settled in this world than I have before and I can start to enjoy things. I wouldn't appreciate a novel taking this long to get me into the story, but given the starts and stops of these episodes, I'm much more willing to go along with it and three episodes doesn't seem as big an investment.If you haven't decided to take the plunge, this might be the time.

Source: irresponsiblereader.com/2018/05/10/born-to-the-blade-1-3-baby-shower-by-cassandra-khaw-yup-baby-shower-a-literal-baby-shower-just-what-every-fantasy-series-needs
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2018-05-06 07:26
Baby Shower
Baby Shower - Cassandra Khaw

All of the characters in Born of the Blade are struggling with their biggest challenge yet: a baby shower. It seemed a bit like an episode of a sitcom, or else maybe just a middle part of a book but as a separate part of the serial it was a bit strange. Of course, the baby shower itself is filled with much more than baby presents, but still. To me it felt like filler, and this is only the 3rd episode. I’m curious to see where this is going.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2018-01-23 18:55
Book Suffers From Backstory Issues
A Bump in the Road: From Happy Hour to Baby Shower - Maureen Lipinski

I really would have liked this story more if the author, Maureen Lipinski, had spent more time setting up the backstory of our main character and secondary characters. That through me so much while reading. At one point I did go back to Amazon to make sure I wasn't missing a first book or something. But nope, this is the first book in the series. Since I read the sequel right after finishing this, I realized that book (Not Ready for Mom Jeans) ended up causing me to dislike the first book more than I did and dropped this down to three stars. 

 

The main character is Clare Finnegan who has been married for several months at the start of this story. Clare and her husband Jake (who I can't even remember his name at this point...shows how much he stuck with me--I did go back and look it up though) are flying home from Vegas and thanking the gods they don't have kids. Of course the gods smile and then Clare ends up getting pregnant by accident (birth control + antibiotics = not a good idea to have relations). Clare and Jake go through a series of emotions since they are in their late 20s and were not really thinking of children yet. They do proceed with the pregnancy and go through the ups and downs of expecting their first child while dealing with their families, friends, and jobs.


For the most part I found this book slightly funny. Clare has a unique voice. She is an event planner and also a blogger. Apparently a blogger that gets 20,000 views a day (I feel like that is unheard of) with her providing details to her readers about her day to day life. I wish that we had gotten some excerpts from Clare's blog or anything that showcased her writing, since I was flummoxed why she would be so popular. There are allusions to her blog taking off, but that is one of the weird passages that this book contains that makes you believe there is another book before this. 

 

The secondary characters just fit character types. Clare's two best friends Reese and Julie (who haven't spoken in like a year after some blow up during Clare's bachelorette party) are the type A super mom/wife and the party girl. She hangs out with them while also judging them. I also ended up not caring for Jake too much since he made cracks about Julie and her upbringing. Apparently if you live in a mobile home you are white trash and that's that. God. Forget not caring about him, he and his sanctimonious family sucked.  

 

The writing was so-so. As I said there are whole passages alluding to things that Lipinski writes about that in a way that makes it seem you should already know about these things. It drove me up the wall and took me out of the story every time. I was wondering if this book came with a prologue and even went back to the title page at one point and worked me way through again.

 

The book takes place in Chicago and I really wish we had gotten more flavor of the town in this story. One reason why I love Jen Lancaster and Stacy Ballis's book is that they make Chicago come alive. The only settings you read about are Clare's workplace, her apartment with her hubby, and Reese's home. 

 

The ending has Clare delivering her first child and wondering what is next. 

 

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2015-08-21 11:48
Nation of Enemies: A Thriller
Nation of Enemies: A Thriller - H.A. Raynes

Full disclosure: I know the author. (Yeah, I'm kind of a big deal.) However, my persistent resistance against the forces of starflation (not a word, but should be), combined with the fact that I'm simply not that nice of a person (there's a reason no one shows me baby pictures anymore) should restore some faith in my reviewer-ly credibility.

 

Social Engineering & (Not-So-Distant-) Future Crimes

I don't know much about the book biz (I assume it takes more than, say, six-weeks to write, edit, and publish a novel), but I do know a thing or two about Moore's Law and exponential growth. So, I'm pretty confident that there are quite a few elements of Nation of Enemies that were much more “futuristic” at the book's inception than they are now. “House, play acoustic channel” is a real thing that real people say, courtesy of various Internet of Things (IoT) contraptions. I'm no technophobe.* However, innovation is almost always accompanied by risk. That risk, of course, usually comes in the form of other people.

Singularity Graphic

Such is the case in the year 2032– modern day technologies and policies (electronic health records, “embryo profiling,” geolocation etc.) are taken to their extremes, and mixed with a hearty dose of a Brave New World-style caste system, leaving citizens' lives all but dictated by MedID numbers (conveniently implanted into their forearms). Oh, and also, it's an election year. So, as you might imagine, the surveillance state is in full swing.

 

Conway Stern Hand

 

Cast o' Characters

One of my favorite things about this book is that it's not a clear-cut case of good versus evil. The tension between liberty and security doesn't grow out of malice. Don't get me wrong, you've got some decidedly villainous players skulking around, but it's a world of tradeoffs— decisions have consequences, and there's a selfish side to everyone involved. That being said, certain individuals piqued my interest more than others.

 

Taylor Hensley is a single mother, graffiti artist, and daughter of the Boston Brahmin-esque presidential candidate. Basically, it would be as though Shepard Fairey (of HOPE poster fame) was Mitt Romney's son. Plus, she skedaddles about rooftops using suction cups, which is just so badass.

 

Lana suction climbing

 

It's actually incredibly difficult to give my two-cents on almost any character without giving something away. Between the layers of deception (there are a lot of them), and my own fickle nature, I ran hot and cold with almost everyone.

 

So…

What separates this book from its catch-me-if-you-can kin is its tolerance for moral ambiguity. In a world of limited resources, wicked problems exist, and these problems have no definitive answers. At one point, a character reflects “How could we have brought another child into this world? What have we done?” And I found myself thinking, yeah— what were you thinking?!? (And not just for the same reasons that I found Baby Hater so gosh darn enjoyable). The story ends, but it doesn't feel like the conversation's over—and I like that. 

_________________________________

* I'm literally a member of Data Analysts for Social Good. And not just because that makes such great pick-up line.

† Pick up a copy of Future Crimes, if you're in the mood to thoroughly terrify yourself with some non-fiction insight into these emerging vulnerabilities.

‡ Though, in this case, said forearms don't seem to feature vanadium bones.

back to top

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2014-12-01 14:54
The Playground – Audio Freebie
The Playground - Ray Bradbury

This just in: it turns out that kids can be monstrously terrible to each other. Feel free to take a moment to integrate this revelation into your heretofore innocent worldview.

 

How did I come to know this terrifying secret? From Ray Bradbury of course. (Although I do have this weird blank spot in my memory for the duration of what should have been my middle school years, but let's ignore that for now).

 

The Playground (available for FREE on audible) manages to pack a walloping creepiness punch into a short story of a father troubled by his memories of his time at the playground, and what such an environment (“an immense iron industry whose sole product was pain, sadism and sorrow”) might entail for his young son. 

 

We want to play 1

We want to play 2

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?