I am a big fan of John Dolan’s writing and enjoyed the first book in his new trilogy, Karma’s Children, so much that I started to read the second book straight away. Unfortunately I’ll have to wait a bit for the conclusion… Because yes, it’s another great book.
In contrast to Restless Earth (you can check my review here), this book is less complex in structure and reminded me more of the previous series, Time, Blood and Karma, although it would be wrong to state that any of the books by this author are “simple” or “straightforward”. He has built a universe of characters, locations, and events that interconnect in ways that bring to mind a spider web. It is beautiful, complex, and depending on your location you might, or might not, be able to see how the whole structure works. But, back to the structure. Here, the story is told mostly in chronological order (sometimes the characters might recall things from their past, but the actual events in the main story are told in what appears to be the logical order), by two main characters. We have the first-person present tense narration by our hero, David Braddock (well, hero/antihero), and here the narration is much more in tune with previous books, bringing back his wit, his observations, his quotes, but also, his anxiety and his lack of insight at times. (He seems to have taken a page out of my notebook, though, and he shows some evidence of trying to grow up at the beginning of the story). I was pleased to hear from him from his own mouth, as such, even if I must confess that the previous book made me keep my eyes more closely trained on him and question his reasoning and his motives even more than usual.
The other main character is Ross Gallagher, a newcomer to the story, and a professional baddie at that. His story is told in the third person but from his point of view, so we get to “understand”, if that is possible, how his mind works. He is matter of fact, and seems distanced from himself (yes, as the narration notes, he disassociates from his behaviour), but despite his professionalism, there is evidence that he is slowly unravelling. We learn about his past history, and it is not long before we discover that fate and karma are at work again, ready to prove that the world can turn up to be much smaller than we think. The author does not write one-dimensional characters, and this is not just an evil character you’ll love to hate. I wouldn’t say I liked him and yet…
It’s a bit difficult to talk about this book in detail without risking giving away any spoilers. This time, as the description hints at, things get pretty personal for Braddock, and despite the support by the many women in his life (I’ve become a huge fan of Da, and I’m pleased Braddock is giving her more of a free rein) and their mature attitude, he is in turmoil. And, unfortunately, things only get worse. There is a twist at the end (it didn’t surprise me, but I won’t say anything else), and I wonder if some readers might class the ending as a cliff-hanger. In my opinion, we get answers to most of the questions posed in the book, thanks to the two points of view employed and to the ending. Having said that, this is a trilogy, and we are left desperate to know how it will all conclude. And that is as should be.
Fans of Dolan’s novels will enjoy the quality of his writing, the philosophical insights (that we might share in or not), the many quotes (Macbeth plays a big part, although references to rivers and the sea brought to mind Garcilaso de la Vega for me), the varied and complex characters, the mystery/thriller parts of the story (I had an inkling that all was not well, but I didn’t quite work out all the details), the contrasting settings (from Thailand, to London, to Marbella, to Bali, beautifully described), and the ending, which opens up more questions and promises a final book where everything will come to an explosive end.
I would not recommend readers who’ve never read any of the author’s books to start here. At the very least, I’d advise anybody who wants to get a full sense of the story to read the previous book in the trilogy. And, if you have time, start right at the beginning, reading book one in the Time, Blood and Karma series, Everyone Burns. You’ll thank me later.
A must-read for lovers of intrigue, complex characters, exotic settings, philosophical insights and reflections, excellent writing, and stories with red herrings and twists and turns. I can’t wait for the last book!
Let's start off by saying this is a fairly new author for us and we really enjoyed our second read by them .The only thing we disliked is we wish that the author had written and Epilogue. I strongly dislike authors that end books just like this author did as we love seeing a glimpse into the future especially if the romance was a rocky road to get to a happily ever after.Just a personal pet peeve of mine.
We really loved the character's Ariel/Raven and Falcon (love their names) they were a lot of fun and both of them had vibrant personalities which we love.Falcon the man whore who has women falling at his feet and then you have the feisty Black haired raven who is mouthy as all get out and we loved her sassiness and her spunk as she made us laugh time and time again. Raven's character's was a hoot ! We found her to be strong,successful,smart,independent,caring funny,and one of those women who doesn't even know her own sex appeal."We loved her from the very beginning!"
Falcon-We love his name! We found Falcon to be way to cocky for his own good,sexy as sin ,was confident ,had this dangerous aura than surrounds him, is dangerous but, he could also be playful and tease but, not one who gives up the chase quite so easily.
We love the other character's as well like Darby,Echo,Creed all had different personalities some of them light and funny,others all serious like and others dark and dangerous.We loved Tracey and Chad as they livened things up and were tell it like it is kind of people the perfect friends who will have no problem giving you a kick in the a** when you need it. grinning.....
The plot was a lot of fun we loved the cat a mouse chase going on between these two Falcon and Raven ,we loved their banter and we even loved Falcon's cockiness because his antic's really made us smile throughout the whole story.We loved to that we saw that he had some vulnerability to him and the whole relationship was a new learning platform for him.That saying is true for Falcon "When the Fall they Fall Hard " because his besties new he was in love even before he did or at-least they suspected it because of his actions and deeds .Raven and Falcon had some major chemistry for sure and just one taste of one another will never be enough but, with these two stubborn and strong willed people will never make falling it love easy but, their journey will gives us tons of laughs and smiles along the way.
Some favorite quotes of ours from this story
"Stop stealing my kisses.” … “Those kisses are being begged to be stolen. So, I’ll keep stealing them each and every time.”
"He told me he wanted me to be his first, last and everything in between.”
"Falcon is like a fine wine, while you have him you have to savor him.”
Overall the story was quite enjoyable and we loved getting to know all the character's and we can't wait to read Darby's,and Creed's story.This was one fun read that was full of tons of chemistry and had really hot sexual interludes as well as making us laugh out loud time and time again.I really think we are really going to love this series. We recommend the read to all ! We are looking forward to reading more of this author's works !
Title: Surprise Island
Author: Gertrude Chandler Warner
Series: The Boxcar Children, 2
Length: 229 pages (iPhone)
Rating: 3 stars
Summer vacation on an almost private island gives the Aldens a challenge.
Mini-review: Cute book. Benny kind of annoys me. I liked the new characters of Joe and Captain Daniel.
The Little Mermaid lives deep under the ocean and longs to see the world above. When at last she is allowed to rise to the surface at age fifteen, she falls in love with a young prince. In order to become a human and to be with him, she makes a dangerous pact with the Sea Witch.
This is the ultimate Mermaid tale—the one that got the ball rolling, so to speak. Having just re-read a bunch of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales, this story was very fresh in my mind. I headed into this graphic novel unsure of which version I was getting, HCA’s or Disney’s. I am happy to report that it was very true to the Andersen version.
The artwork was beautiful and I would be happy to recommend it to all ages of reader. I remember reading a comic book version of this tale as a child and being very scared by the Sea Witch. In this version, she is not nearly so scary in my opinion, but I don’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing. Bad people don’t necessarily look bad and that’s a valuable lesson to learn.
I was struck by the fact that the Little Mermaid is only 15 years old, and that’s in a species that lives to be 300. She is so young to be making these life changing decisions! I mean, who among us is married to the person we were in love with at 15? Not very many!
Read for my 2019 MerMay Project, which is getting an early start because I’ll be on vacation for half of the month of May.
My 2011 photo of the Little Mermaid in the Copenhagen Harbour