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review 2020-03-12 05:52
Review: Day Zero by Kelly deVos
Day Zero - Kelly deVos

To sum it up in one sentence, this book wasn’t very good but wasn’t completely without redeeming qualities. The writing was solid. A bit too much tell versus show at times but the narrative was engaging enough that it didn’t bother me. I liked the introductions to all the characters and felt that those early chapters gave me a really good handle on who everyone was. Except Toby, for the first few chapters I kept forgetting who he was and I am still not sure why I couldn’t remember him.

 

Jinx was a terrible main character. I could tell that she’s supposed to be smart but she really enjoyed acting like she wasn’t. Her father prepared her for the apocalypse for years, she knows what she should do in the situations presented in the book. She just decides not to do it. And then regrets it once everything goes horribly wrong. Just once I wanted her to follow the lessons of her father and go along with the disaster plan. But, alas, she did not. I tried really hard to like her as a character but I just couldn’t do it.

 

Charles was an absolutely delight as a character, which was completely unexpected for me. I did not expect to like him but he stole my heart. I wanted to protect him in his anxiety and fear. And to quite frank, he was a lot smarter than his older sister too.

 

My biggest problem with this book however was the political overtones. I don’t mind books that are commentaries on the current political climate. But, is it really so hard to disguise that a tiny bit? Somehow the current political parties have been replaced by The Spark and The Opposition. I have no idea how that happened because the author didn’t bother to tell me. The Spark is basically the Democrat party. Socialist, popular with “educated” folks who majored in political science, and the goal is take rich people’s money and spread it around so that everyone has a mediocre existence. They have been in power for about 10 years according to the book. Their leader is Rosenthal. Everyone in the book repeats the party catch phrase ad nauseum “Everyone’s for Rosenthal.” And if anyone in the book even hints that they might not be for Rosenthal they are immediately attacked with “so you just hate people? you just want to hoard your stuff instead of take care of people?!” Yawn. Boring. The Opposition is the Republicans, allegedly. Led by Ammon Carver, an enigmatic billionaire who owns the largest bank in the country and since “Everyone’s for Rosenthal” he obviously cheated in order to win. Is this sounding familiar at all? Oh yes, everyone in The Opposition wears red hats, carries shotguns, has a poor command of the English language, has a pickup truck, and obviously wants the world to descend into anarchy so they can keep all their stuff. Oh and every other character immediately labels them a Neo-Nazi seemingly without any evidence of that at all. Is this sounding familiar now?

 

I didn’t mind the political themes at first because after the first 20 pages or so they seemed to largely move on to other things. But then it comes back at the end in such a heavy handed way that I wanted to scream. It felt like the author was beating me over the head with a MAGA hat screaming “I’m talking about Trump and 2016!!!” I get it. Okay? Honestly. I get it. I am not so stupid that I didn’t see your glaringly obvious theme. I was so tired of it by the time we got to the big twist at the end that I mostly just wanted the book to end. I don’t mind politics in my books, but please refrain from beating me over the head with your own opinions. I don’t need the brain damage.

 

And then we come to the twist. It wasn’t that good either. I started figuring it out about halfway through the book. I was completely sure that I knew what was going on shortly after. It was so blatantly obvious that even another character basically says to Jinx, “Hey isn’t all this stuff weird and suspicious? Do you think there might be something odd going on here?” And Jinx just laughs and says “Of course not!”. Then she is oh so shocked when the traitor is revealed. Um, that other character literally told you all that stuff about 40 pages ago. Are you really that dense?

 

Overall, not a good book. I won’t be reading the next book but it gets some credit for the exciting middle portion and for Charles.

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review 2018-08-19 03:23
Curtsies & Conspiracies by Gail Carriger (audiobook)
Curtsies & Conspiracies - Gail Carriger,Moira Quirk

Series: Finishing School #2

 

This second installment of the finishing school series is still fun. There's an extension of the first plot where we discover what the prototype was ultimately supposed to be used for, and there's lots of stuff with vampires.

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review 2017-08-16 00:00
Curtsies & Conspiracies
Curtsies & Conspiracies - Gail Carriger 4 stars

review to follow
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review 2016-12-08 17:40
Book the Second Indeed!
Curtsies & Conspiracies - Gail Carriger

Curtsies & Conspiracies - Gail Carriger 

 

This was such a great follow up to the first book in the Finishing School Series.  Sophronia is up to her usual tricks, and there are new adventures to be had.  I loved the situations that Sophronia and her girls get up to.  But the best part of this was the fact that there were even some boys involved! And Miss Sophronia was getting the feels too.  

 

The vast conspiracies abounded and of course, Sophronia was the the one who was able to put it all together.  The way that the author is able to seamlessly weave all the moving parts to the plot together is so amazing.  I could just get drawn in for hours.

 

Add to that the fact that I was listening to this on audio and seriously, I was in heaven. Moira Quirk does a fantastic job with the narration. The way she can just project so many feelings into what she's saying just by changing her accent is amazing.  I could listen to her read just about anything.

 

Obviously, I have to continue on with this series. Things are just starting to come to light, and there's a new school year coming, sure to be full of new girls, new lessons, and new adventures! 

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review 2016-04-24 05:53
Counterfeit Conspiracies (Bodies of Art, #1)
Counterfeit Conspiracies - Ritter Ames

Laurel Beacham may have been born with a silver spoon in her mouth, but she has long since lost it digging herself out of trouble. Quick wits and connections have gained her a reputation as one of the world’s premier art recovery experts. The police may catch the thief, but she reclaims the missing masterpieces.

The latest assignment, however, may be her undoing. Using every ounce of luck and larceny she possesses, Laurel must locate a priceless art icon and rescue a co-worker (and ex-lover) from a master criminal, all the while matching wits with a charming new nemesis.

 

A very fun, fast, non-stop adventure from woe to go.  Laurel is supremely capable and holds her own in every situation.  Jack is the cliche of international man of mystery, and I like him anyway.  Setting a series in the midst of the art-recovery world is equivalent to giving my cat catnip as far as my tastes are concerned.

 

My two biggest disappointments with this book were Laurel's constant cycle of "I can't trust him.  I can't trust anybody."  Jack would track her down, she'd run away.  He'd find her, she'd run away.  Again, and again, and again. It got old long before the book ended.  My second complaint concerns the number of typos; Henery Press has spoiled me to this point by putting out books that were almost error free, but I guess the streak had to end at some point.  A lot of missing words, a few extra words, at least one continuity error.

 

Mostly the book was a lot of fun and I'm definitely getting the next book; hopefully Laurel willl pull her head out and stop running away.

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