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Search tags: read-in-2018
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review 2018-09-19 00:58
I Am Justice
I Am Justice - Diana Munoz Stewart

I picked this for the cover. I liked it. Justice is an assassin. She is part of a family (all adopted children rescued from various situations) that is rich and has influence. Oh, and they take down human traffickers. Permanently. Sandesh is an ex soldier who runs a humanitarian group (all ex soldiers). Sandesh's group needs money and contracts with Parish Industries (Justice's family).
Based on the description, I shouldn't have been surprised at how dark this went. But I was. I also didn't like how fast Justice and Sandesh's relationship progressed. A slow burn would have worked better IMO because of Justice's background and dislike of most men. I could have done without Walid's (the bad guy) POV. I did like getting Justice's and Sandesh's.
While Justice is kick ass, I thought she had many stupid moments. Like being told to wait and not doing that. She didn't grow on me as the book progressed. I did like the end with Sandesh's question and what he gave her; it showed thoughtfulness and caring. On the other side, the end was a bit abrupt I thought.
When it's all said and done, this was okay and I doubt I will pick up the next one about Grace (which is supposed to be out and it isn't).

For Booklikes Halloween Bingo I read this for the New Release square (came out May 2018).

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review 2018-09-17 08:15
Kill Game (Seven of Spades #1)
Kill Game - Cordelia Kingsbridge

Great start to this series!

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review 2018-09-16 22:26
The Boyfriend Bracket
The Boyfriend Bracket - Kate Evangelista

Stella has had a crush on Will, her big brother's best friend for years. However, because of the two of them, she's been unable to date anyone since they chase off any guys who might try. The two of them have just graduated, leaving Stella finally free to date. With the help of her best friend, Franklin, the two concoct a plan to get a Stella a boyfriend - the Boyfriend Bracket. But when Will ends up being around a lot more often than expected, Stella finds herself focusing on him more than any of the guys in the bracket.

 

I picked this book up for the "boyfriend bracket" concept, so it was disappointing to see just how early on it was dropped. The little the book did have of it was rushed through or told in summary after the fact. The majority of the guys were never even on page. I knew what direction the book was ultimately going to take based on the synopsis, but I thought the eponymous bracket would at least play a bigger role in the book.

 

The romance didn't particularly do it for me. Will had spent years chasing other guys away from Stella because he didn't want anyone else to have her, even though he had no intention of asking her out at that point. He goes along with overprotective and possessive behavior on Stella's brother's part to keep other guys away from her. I'm just not a fan of that type of behavior.

 

I was disappointed the book quickly discarded a unique premise for a romance with the big brother's best friend who participated in overprotective and possessive behaviors. The tossing of the unique premise wouldn't have necessarily ruined the book for me since I love a good romantic comedy regardless of how cliched it is. But throw in an overprotective/possessive love interest and there has to be some incredibly strong writing with some killer chemistry to sell the story to me. And this just didn't deliver.

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review 2018-09-16 21:27
Truly, Madly
Truly, Madly - Heather Webber

This was just what I wanted to read. A light, paranormal mystery with a side of romance thrown in! See, Lucy is a Valentine and the Valentines have this ability/gift to see auras and match people together. There is also a curse; Cupid's Curse, that follows them around that prevents a Valentine from having everlasting love. When Lucy was 14 she was shocked and lost her ability to see auras. She developed a brand new gift: the ability to find lost objects. However this made her question her identity, her worthiness, and threw her into a tailspin.
Lucy finally found herself in this book. Her parents, Oscar and Judith, have a very unconventional relationship that works for them. I really liked all the characters. This book was funny, fun, and serious. I really enjoyed the mix of paranormal, mystery, and romance. I thought the mystery was a really good one.
Lucy is a very likable character. The same for Sean and Lucy's family and group of friends. I liked that she gave up her trust fund and put herself through college. It was even better when she started to see her gift as something that was unique and beneficial. I look forward to seeing where she can go and who can be helped!
I do think the curse isn't a Curse so much as a self-fulfilling one.
For Booklikes Halloween Bingo 2018, this is my cozy mystery pick.

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review 2018-09-16 18:21
Ultimate Comic Spider-Man, Vol. 3
Ultimate Comics Spider-Man, Vol.3 - Brian Michael Bendis,David Marquez

After being blackmailed into teaming up with his uncle, Spider-Man had to figure out how to stop his uncle while keeping his parents safe. And Spider-Man's actions had drawn the attention of Captain America who was not happy that someone so young was fighting crime.

 

Spider-Man's story with his uncle continued to be great in this book. There's a lot of emotional turmoil as Miles dealt with his conflicting feelings over wanting to go to his parents, but not trusting that they'd accept him as Spider-Man after comments his father had made about Spider-Man and others with powers. Plus this was his uncle blackmailing him who he looked up to for so long, so there's that extra betrayal as well. And the resolution to this story line just opened up even more conflict for Miles in the future.

 

Then I flipped a page and was suddenly informed that the US was falling apart, Texas had seceded, Washington DC was in ruins, and anti-government militia were wreaking havoc all over. I knew I'd stepped into a crossover event that I had no information about. For the rest of the book, the major events of the book were disjointed as big things kept happening off-screen that had a huge effect on this book, but I had no context for. Miles' story was at least fairly straightforward and not missing chunks of plot that left it impossible to follow, as sometimes happens in comics taken over by crossover events. However, the events outside of Miles were harder to follow since they were missing a lot of information.

 

The third volume of the series continued a great run before being taken over by a crossover event that demonstrated why those can be so frustrating for people who aren't reading every issue in the crossover.

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