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review 2020-05-25 19:15
LITTLE CREEPING THINGS BY CHELSEA ICHASO
Little Creeping Things - Chelsea Ichaso

I'm not going to lie, I struggled to get through this one. I don't really have a problem with unreliable or unlikable narrators but when they whine all throughout and are constantly seeing everything through their self serving pity-me glasses, that's where I tend to draw the line.

 

 

I've LOVED books with a narratives from villains, from characters I didn't like one bit. I wish this could have been the case here but it just wasn't. The plot could have at least helped the story along but honestly I found it to also be lacking.

 

 

To me it was kinda like everything was rather one dimensional, the characters, the plot, and the mystery. The synopsis offered things I don't think the story ever delivered on. The big reveal at the end felt somehow predictable and easy, which was WEIRD because the one thing I can think of that I guess you could say is positive is that I didn't figure it out till right before.

 

 

But once it was revealed it felt like OF COURSE and only because no one should guess that for any other reason than it would seem the least likely and you were just supposed to accept it in the end for nothing more than because sometimes people are just evil or crazy or whatever. It felt very simplified.

 

 

Give me a breadcrumb or two along the way. I love to be surprised don't get me wrong, but it cheapens it to me when you did nothing along the way to give even miniscule clues or make it understandable how you got there or why things ended this way until literally right before, and even that is shakey at best. Maybe the fact that I'm reading such an emotionally complex grand series as well right now didn't help.

 

 

This just felt incredibly immature and unsatisfying to me. If major teen angst is your bag, or maybe you want to dip a toe in a light mystery, you might enjoy this one. To be honest I felt like the Scooby-Doo gang solved more indepth cases, but to each his own.

 

 

I received an arc of this book from Sourcebooks Fire via Netgalley and this is my honest review.

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review 2020-05-25 07:16
Chance
Always a Bridesmaid - Cindi Madsen

This is book #2, in the Getting Hitched In Dixie series.  While each book in this series in listed as a standalone and can be read that way, I recommend reading them in order.  Well worth it if you do.

 

Violet comes to visit and help her sister.  She has crashed and burned recently with the bad breakup she has just experienced.  Then she meets Ford, and its like she just has to tell herself she is here to recover temporarily.  

 

Ford never expects one woman to knock him off his feet.  Since they have met, he has felt like he always wants to be around her all the time.  Is it turning in your man card if you like being around someone so fun and full of life?

 

This author is a 1click standard for me, I will be honest about that.  Not since her Taking Shots series have I stayed up and not put a book down. (I surely would love if she wrote more hockey - whoo!) Anyway, this story was full of rich characters with full backstories.  The people in this town are all quirky and interesting to read.  I laughed and eagerly turned the pages.  Excited to see the next installment!  I give this read a 5/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This early copy was given by Netgalley and its publisher, in exchange for honest review.

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review 2020-05-24 15:05
The Clockmakers Daughter
The Clockmaker’s Daughter - Kate Morton

by Kate Morton

 

Elodie, is getting married soon, but she doesn't seem all that interested. She's a likeable character with a strong sense of her own independence and a love of researching the past, which is part of her job. Although her part in the story is set in modern day, she has the feel of a Victorian character out of place.

 

I really enjoyed reading this at first as the writing is very good and I could identify with Elodie in many ways, but as the chapters went on I felt it became very slow. There are interesting time jumps, but they aren't done as smoothly as they might have and the connection between Elodie and Ada had a lot of potential, but again, things just took forever to progress.

 

I think this story could have been shorter and tightened up. Some brilliant creative ideas were in there that deserved to hold my interest more than they did.

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review 2020-05-24 14:56
The Christmas Cookie Plate
The Christmas Cookie Plate: 50 Years of Award-Winning Cookie Recipes From The Russell Kitchen - Julie Schoen

by Julie Schoen

 

I don't normally read much of the introduction to cookbooks but go straight for the recipes. This one was an exception as the author's story about her mother and grandmother's talents for baking was actually very interesting. I also found myself actually reading through the recipes rather than picking and choosing a few of especial interest as I usually do.

 

I found myself saying "I'm going to have to try that," on many of the first recipes, though the bulk of them were pretty standard and there were an inordinate number using coconut, which I do like but not in everything! I started reading too close to Christmas this year to do some trials for my holiday baking, but I'll be trying out some of these recipes through the year and I expect some, like candy apple cookies, will make it into next year's holiday baking plans.

 

A lot of the recipes use ingredients only available in the U.S., and one was even made from a German Chocolate cake mix only available in the U.S., so they aren't all the treasured family recipes that the introduction would lead me to believe. Still, a few of them look really good.

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review 2020-05-24 14:46
The Cat in the Christmas Tree
The Cat in the Christmas Tree - Peter Scottsdale

by Peter Scottsdale

 

This is written for children, and as such some of the dialogue isn't quite realistic but more of a cleaned up version like you often see in children's books. The plot holds together reasonably well and the magical transition was very good.

 

There were some good messages about learning to respect the property of others and not bullying, however, I have an issue with a few other messages that come across.

 

First of all, the father is in total charge of the family and the mother doesn't argue when he threatens to get rid of the cat. This gives a bad impression of relationship dynamics as well as of a father's role. To me, he's totally evil and his wife should divorce him and keep the cat so her son will be happy!

 

My other issue is with calling the cat bad for jumping into the tree. Really? You bring a real tree into a home with a cat and expect him not to jump into it immediately? The author is a cat lover and owner so he should know better than that! Also, when the cat is destroying things he shouldn't or biting, why aren't the parents making any effort whatsoever to teach him parameters? Cats do learn, and not by whining at them that they shouldn't do that as if they understood every word. (Secretly I do believe they understand every word but that's another matter.)

 

All things considered, the story has some brilliant elements from a Christmas magic point of view, but I would not buy it for a child because of these unacceptable messages about fathers and cat discipline.

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