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text 2018-07-22 17:43
Reading progress update: I've read 106 out of 368 pages.
The Delirium Brief - Charles Stross

Bob has lost his voice. Or, more accurately, Stross has lost Bob's distinctive voice, which is disappointing as it's a big factor in the fun of these books.

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review 2018-07-22 07:53
Poison City (London Tau) - Paul Crilley

I'm still very new to urban fantasy, so maybe I couldn't appreciate this book as much as I felt I should. I always read the blurb and think, wow, that sounds great but somehow the stories always leave me wanting. I think it is because they straddle genres - humor and horror - but they don't seem to be able to maintain both at the same time, so just when you are getting in to the jokes it becomes serious and gory. Not that I mind serious and gory but then I expect the scares which are hard to come by in a humorous book.

 

Aaaanyway, I did enjoy this even if I didn't think it was as great as I had hoped (let's face it, few books are). The setting was unusual, South African Durban, but Gideon Tau (known as London) felt like a rather generic hero. On the other hand, I had a picture in my head of the comedian Sarah Millican as his boss, Armitage which was quite amusing and I really think the sherry-swilling, ball-licking, talking, magic dog should get a story all of his own (although I'm not sure you would be able to tear him away from his soaps long enough to have an adventure).

 

As I bought books 1 and 2 at the same time for very little money I will read the sequel but I have to say if I had to pay full price for it I probably wouldn't.

 

A note on the Kindle edition - it has no page numbers, which I find really annoying!

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review 2018-07-21 20:38
Cute fable style book
Tuck Everlasting - Natalie Babbitt

I would fail at the lesson this book is trying to impart, but it was a charming story.

 

I think the part I loved most was the way it was written, with the heat descriptions, and the little asides that made the setting.

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review 2018-07-21 14:14
i need more of this author!
Hers, Unbroken (Hers #2) - Anna Adler
Independent reviewer for Archaeolibrarian, I was gifted my copy of this book. As head of the pet training centre, Holly knows exactly what that training involves. Chase deliberately gets himself caught to be taken to the training centre, because that is what he really wants! To be a sex slave. Holly though, wants to set him and all the other pets free. But Holly only has Chase for 48 hours before they come for him. Can they work together to get what they BOTH want?? This is book 2 in the Her series but you don't NEED to have read book one, Hers Untamed, for this one to make sense. However, personally, I think you SHOULD read it before this one. It will give you a better picture of the people of Silenia, and just what having a pet means to them. It will also give you a better picture of just how different Holly is from the rest of her people. Also, I said in my review for that book, I wanted Jax, the 'pet', to have a say, because he didn't. Chase DOES have a say here, and it does creep my star rating up a fraction but I still can't stretch to the full 5 stars. And I think that's mostly because the rebellion happens almost overnight! One day, they all want to keep their pets under lock and key, and the next, everyone is free!! Felt really kinda rushed to me. It's still a really great read, and I loved that Chase refuses to perform for anyone but Holly. Loved that she couldn't quite get her head round the fact he wanted to be a sex slave. And I did read it in one sitting! Are there more planned?? I hope so. Even with the rushed rebellion, I think these people have more to say. 4.5 stars, rounded up for the blog. **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

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review 2018-07-21 07:44
Unbreakable (The Unblemished Trilogy) - Sara Ella

Eliyana Ember is a reluctant queen. As vessel of the Verity—the purest of souls—only she can lead the fight against the wicked magnetism of the Void. If she fails, the paths between Reflections will cease to exist, and those she loves will remain plagued by darkness. After falling through a draining Threshold and suffering near-death, Eliyana awakens to a Shadowalker-ridden Venice, Italy. From there, she must learn to navigate mysteries of time and space. Traveling across the seven Reflections, Eliyana seeks one thing: the demise of the Void. But something else is at stake—the fate of her heart. Kyaphus Rhyen and Joshua David, brothers in arms, duel to win her hand. Ky remains ensnared and tortured by the Void. Joshua, though well-meaning, harbors dark secrets. Meanwhile, Eliyana finds herself torn, her mind and memories leading her in one direction, but her heart pulling her toward a man she knows she shouldn’t trust. How can she discern whom to believe when she cannot even depend on her own fragmented memories?

Amazon.com

 

 

 

*NOTE: This is a continuation / conclusion of a series, so we have some spoiler-y material down below. Click away now if you haven't yet read the first two books and don't want spoilers!

 

 

Eliyana is now queen of the Second Reflection and vessel for The Verity. As such, she prepares herself and her kingdom for leading an attack against The Void. She survives a fall through a Threshold that nearly kills her (attempting to suck her life force out), awakening in Venice, Italy to find the place full of Shadowalkers. From Venice, Eliyana begins a journey that takes her across the Seven Reflections, gathering info on how to most successfully destroy The Void once and for all. During all this, Eli also goes through an unexpected physical alteration that leaves her quite shaken. 

 

Meanwhile, Ky is struggling with being periodically controlled / tortured by The Void while his brother Joshua David, still not quite right in the head after the events of Book 2, has developed the early stages of DID (once referred to as Split Personality Disorder). Honestly, this part of the book was a little hard to keep straight but I BELIEVE "David" was the good side while "Josh" was the evil one?! The chapters in this book, as in the earlier installments, alternate POVs between Eli, Josh and Ky and in Josh's chapters there's a lot of first person referencing "Josh" in third person. For real, compared to the first two books, this one was a massive headache to keep sorted out. 

 

Even the world building! While impressive in the first book, in this one it was more like a literary Christmas lights tangle. Just all over the place. A ton of info dumps.

 

WAS. NOT. IMPRESSED.

 

What else went wrong? Well, Eli's sister, Ebony -- While I actually kinda liked her character in the earlier installments, in this conclusion piece I found her distractingly obnoxious. Seriously, WHAT happened to all these characters I loved so much in Book 1??!

 

Also, AGAIN the reader is assaulted with pop culture references. Goodness, Miss Sara Ella does play to a certain demographic, and HARD. This was an issue I had with the second book and right off the bat in Book 3 I already hit the "hey, young millennial!" wall. Being of the millennial generation myself... for me, being so obvious felt a little desperate to sound relevant... which is generally not really required of a FANTASY novel. But I will say she does ease up on the habit SOME as you move along in this third book. Even so, it's noticeably grating for this reader.  

 

While I found the first book very unique and gripping, having now reached this conclusion novel I find much of the series to be a sort of YA / NA soap opera with mild, not always well plotted out fantasy elements.

 

Indulge me a momentary rant: *VENICE. SERIOUSLY --- HOW DO YOU DO SO LITTLE WITH SUCH A SETTING??? -- only brief mention of some canals and St. Marks Basilica and then off to anywhere, everywhere else! Why bother working that location in at all, then? At one point, Eli is even going to the literal Land of Oz. No joke. 

 

I read this one in a day but it took ALL DAY with LOTS of breaks in between. Not because of "OMG THE FEELS. SQUUEEE!" but more like I'm so bored outta my gourd I was doing anything and everything -- even laundry and deep cleaning projects, y'all -- procrastinating going back to this book... not a good sign, but since I was sent this one for review, I don't feel right bestowing a DNF on it. 

 

Noted, Sara, you're a fan of OUAT, Disney and all things princess-y and whimsical. You're hip. You're with it. Dukka Dukka Dukka.

 

 Image result for im hip im with it

 

One line I will give Sara Ella props for though, is in Chapter 22, when Ky explains how he perceives The Verity: "Pure of heart doesn't mean without darkness... it means a desire for the light." As someone who has had a lot of darkness in her life but still strives for good, I thought this was rather well put. 

 

But yeah, maybe next go 'round, pull back on the pop culture refs just a bit, girl. 

 

 

FTC Disclaimer: TNZ Fiction Guild kindly provided me with a complimentary copy of this book & requested that I check it out and share my thoughts. The opinions above are entirely my own.

 

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My review for Unblemished (Book 1)

My review for Unraveling  (Book 2)

 

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