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review 2018-09-01 02:23
This Was A Nope For Me
Grinding for the Coyote - Serenity Snow

*Possibly spoilerish!!!!*

 

Starting out I felt this book had the potential to be really good. The first chapters weren't all that bad, so I was really rooting for it. But along the way, it just quickly became dull and an overall hot mess. I ended up putting this down for several months and picked it up again last night.  Right away it became clear as to why I had set it aside in the first place. While the premise of the story appealed to me, it didn't feel like the plot was really going anywhere. Often time other than a random action point, it felt more about the attraction of the protagonist (Adalyn) and her intended love interest, (Samarra).  It felt like there was the neverending loop of  'I know she's not looking for a serious relationship, but I want her to be mine.' trope. It got old fast when I just wanted to see where this plot was going to go! Personally, I wasn't really big on either of the characters, there wasn't anything interesting about either.

 

Nevertheless, I decided to power on, since I was already halfway through it. I really wanted to like the book, because I am always up for discovering new queer romances. The prospect of a book with lesbian shifters interested me, as I had mainly seen books with male shifters. But there was barely any lore or how they came to be within the world. Part of what makes supernatural/paranormal elements interesting to me is when the author actually includes defining information in the story. For the author to just plop it in there, without explaining much of Samarra's world, made it not that interesting to read about. Plus half of the book Adalyn doesn't even know that her love interest, is a shifter. Even when it does come out it isn't really a super big reveal. Then somehow along the way, it's casually suggested that Adalyn herself, might have shifter genes but it isn't really taken any further. It's like the author decided to drop it in, as an FYI.  Also, I don't know who edited this book, but there were tons of typos and misuse of words. Plus at one point the author I believe, intended to say Adalyn instead of Samarra, because of the way it was written. Then there were the sexy times themselves, while there were a few steamy moments that were generally not bad.

 

I found most of them to be very awkwardly written,  and not at all enjoyable to read. While I enjoy dialogue during sex scenes, it was just excessive and wasn't even sexy in my opinion. What got we most about the story was this one instance, where Samarra is thinking about how envious she is that hyena shifters are intersex. That because they had a cock they could love a woman in the way that she couldn't. That part had me going wtf?! You don't need to have a dick to make your female lovers happy! Where the author thought that needed to be said at all in the book baffles me. Way to completely ignore that there are plenty of ways for lesbians to have sex, without using a dildo. Not having a male piece, doesn't mean you aren't going to be able to please your girlfriend. Plus it seems in general that Samarra has this complex, about using her dildo. To the point that she wears it ninety percent of the time. It's totally fine that she wants to use it in the bedroom, however, to me it's clearly an issue of hers as to why she uses it. Which begs the question, could she be transgender? I don't know because it never gets brought up, so it leaves me to think that she has a narrowed minded view on the different ways you can make love.

 

Another instance that had that me shaking my head, is when the police hint at the idea of Adalyn sleeping with her boss in the past. Instead of stating that she's never been with a male and that she prefers women. Her response is to affirmatively tell him that she's a lesbian, and not bisexual. The whole tone of that seemed slightly biphobic, by the sheer audacity in her tone. It wasn't a huge thing, but it still made my eyebrow twitch. Lastly, when the big showdown finally arrived it was pretty much fell flat. It wasn't anything spectacular, it was over and done within a few sentences. Which makes the entire book lackluster and made me go 'That's it?'.  There were just so many holes within this story and I could honestly go on and on, but I am gonna end it here. I did not like this book and would not recommend it. 

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review 2018-02-24 16:50
The Clue by Carolyn Wells
The Clue - Carolyn Wells

This is a rare classic mystery that I just really didn't enjoy at all, even taking into consideration the differences in the way that classic mysteries are plotted/presented. It took me nearly a month to finish this slender, 225 page book, which probably tells you everything you need to know.

 

The writing was stiff and the characters were universally wafer thin. It purports to be an entry in the "Fleming Stone" series, but the great detective himself isn't even mentioned until the 87% mark, and he essentially swans into the story at around 90%, receives all of the information from the individuals who have collected it, pronounces a rather preposterous solution and it's a wrap.

 

The representation of female characters is absolutely terrible - even worse than is often the case in books published during early twentieth century (this book was published in 1909). Each woman had some assigned trait from which she was forbidden to stray: the victim was majestic and haughty; Kitty, the apparent love interest, was bewitching and clever; there was a genuine French maid, who was stormy and dramatic; and Dorothy was the clinging rosebud (whatever the hell that is), timid and appealing.

 

I am willing to concede that, perhaps, every book written by Carolyn Wells wasn't as awful as this one. I'm not entirely certain, however, that I'm prepared to read any more so as to find out.

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text 2016-11-18 06:09
Yeah, no
Unborn - Amber Lynn Natusch

Unborn pretty much exemplifies everything that I find unpleasant about paranormal fantasy; not sure why I finished it. First off, we have a lone woman, an exemplary special girl who has untapped powers surrounded by a whole bunch of dudes. Then said dudes spend all kinds of time treating other women like shit, and this is somehow a reflection on the women and not the dudes. Then, and this is my special favorite, most of these dudes are the main girl's brothers, but they persist in treating her like a sex object, and this is funny. Because incest is funny. Why are you being such a buzzkill? 

 

Oh, and it ends on a cliffhanger. I know, right? 

 

This is the sort of book that makes me appreciate this book's antecedents, stuff like Black Dagger Brotherhood and the Fever novels. I made some fun of those at the time, but actually the way those series navigated some seriously problematic shit was pretty deft. BDB has the whole dudes-only feel, but the banter is honestly amusing, and the whole thing ends up being an exploration of masculinity that doesn't have to hate on every woman but the protagonist. Fever, well, Morning turned the cliffhanger into an art form. Unborn does neither of these things well. 

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review 2016-09-07 16:00
Little Tails in the Jungle by Frederic Brremaud and Federico Bertolucci
Little Tails in the Jungle - Frederic Brremaud,Mike Kennedy

This novel just felt incomplete. Not only was the story lacking (in which they did nothing but go around and point out things they saw around them) but the illustrations were off. It felt as if there where two different styles of graphic novels going on throughout the story. Don't get me wrong, both drawing styles were nice, but putting them together did not do the story any justice.

 

 

1.5/5 Stars

Granted this story is not meant for me, but even children would find it a difficult novel to appreciate due to the lack of story and poorly rendered images.  

 

Received through NetGalley for an honest review.

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review 2016-09-06 16:20
The Secrets of Evelyn Taylor by Pauline C. Harris
The Secrets of Evelyn Taylor - Pauline C. Harris

It was just an okay novel. I really wanted to like this book, but I just had too many problems with the writing. While not perfect, the first half was well written. I was enjoying the story until, halfway in, it it just seemed to go downhill quickly. My main issue was the reasoning of the characters. They just seemed unrealistic or made no sense. I wanted more from the plot, but was given an easy and boring way out of the situation.

 

2/5 Stars

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