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review 2018-09-17 23:51
Review: Odd Thomas
Odd Thomas - Dean Koontz

Let me preface my review by saying that I saw the movie a few years ago and enjoyed it very much, so I fully expected to enjoy the book.  And I did.  However, I couldn't stop picturing Anton Yelchin as Odd and it made me very sad.  That being said, the movie was a pretty fair representation of the book.  Minus the parts with Odd's insanely bad parents.  OMG they were terrible, horrible people!


The story is told by the protagonist, Odd Thomas, who can see the dead...and other otherworldly things.  He lives a life of simplicity as a fry cook in a small town and wants nothing more than to settle down with his soul mate, Stormy and maybe get a job selling tires...eventually.  He does his best to help the dead settle whatever business they still have on this plane so that they can finally cross over to the next.


But that all changes the day the Fungus Man comes into the diner where Odd works. This man is  the precursor to the tragedy about to hit Odd's town.  Odd is then in a race to figure out what horrible thing is about to happen in his town, learn what the Fungus Man has to do with it all, and keep as many people safe as possible.


Having enjoyed the movie so much, I kind of expected the book to blow me out of the water.  It did not.  It was good, very good even, but not great.  The story was very sad really.  Learning the way Odd and Stormy grew up, the burden of his "gift", the ending.  I'm a little hesitant to continue with the series, but really, I need to find out what happens to Odd next.


Even though it didn't knock my socks off, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who's into the supernatural.

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review 2018-09-17 14:41
Honestly, it's a 3.5 Star Read
Thinner - Stephen King

It's weird. I think I may have read this book before, but now after finishing it this weekend, I have doubts. I maybe just watched the movie and that's where I was recalling most of my information from. I honestly don't like the Bachman books that much that Stephen King wrote. I recall "The Long Walk" and thought how it made no sense to me and how impossible it would be for teenagers to walk 4 miles an hour. I tried that one day at the gym and had to lightly jog. I also remember reading "The Running Man" and went, eh liked the movie better. So now with "Thinner" I have to say that neither the movie or book impressed me much. You have one man dealing with a curse that is slowly killing him. He blames his wife. A lot. Most of the book slows down in the last 1/3 and I was just bored until the ending.


"Thinner" deals with the after effects of Billy Halleck (Bill or William depending on who is speaking to him) running over and killing a Romani woman. FYI, be prepared for King to refer to them as Gypsies. I have learned since I got older that's a derogatory term for Romani people, so I am not using it here in my review besides the first occurrence. Due to the people he knows and a lot of the towns people hating the Romani people, Billy isn't tried for hit and run, instead the case is dismissed. An older man who is the head of the group of Romani people comes up to Bill and touches his cheek and says "thinner." From there Bill starts to lose weight and struggles to push out of his mind hitting and killing the older woman and the man who touched him.


Most of the book is Billy justifying what happened and saying how it's not really his fault. Instead it's mostly his wife and the older woman's fault. His wife's fault since she started trying to (makes hand motion) while he was driving and the older woman for not looking both ways. What made me laugh and sigh about though was Billy doesn't take any ownership of the fact that the judge and police officer who helped with things would not have done so if not for him. So you have all three of these men being punished, but it seems as if Billy is the one that got off the lightest. 


King does take some time developing the characters. You understand Billy's relationship with his wife and daughter a lot. You also get a look at the secrets a town holds that get revealed when Billy starts going after answers with his doctor, the judge's wife, and the police man. Eventually the book goes sideways when King introduces a friend of Billy's who is going to take care of getting the curse off of him, Ginelli. 

Ginelli is shown to be a bit off. He goes after the Romani people with a laser eyed focus. However, it made no sense to me. He's supposed to be a pretty big crime boss. So why in the world didn't he send forth some underlings? And if they popped up dead then go after them? I don't know. The motivations of him to go toe to toe with the Romani didn't work for me at all. Most of the book slowed down after he showed up and when he was retelling his story to Billy I just didn't care. 


The writing is more crude than King's works. There are a lot of racial slurs used in this one that put me off a bit. The flow as I said earlier got really bad when Ginelli gets introduced. The book just drags it seems until we get to the ending.


The ending leaves us with Billy as a pale shadow of his former self. He manages to justify to himself what he is about to do and I really ended up loathing him. Of course this being a King book the joke's on him and he has a horrified realization about what his actions have wrought. 



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review 2018-09-16 23:48
Fairest - Gail Carson LevineĀ for A Grimm Tale
Fairest - Gail Carson Levine

Meh. There were some nice changes from the standard Snow White, and I  quite liked that she wasn't beautiful at all, but downright ugly. But it will never be my favorite. Weirdly, whereas the musical aspect of Seraphina really engaged me, the constant singing just kind of annoyed me, and that is huge.


It's written for a middle grade audience, there's no sex, or drugs, or actual  murder, and the resolution is elegant. But it felt watered-down to me, way more so than the Disney version. It's first person, so there's no worry for the reader, but it goes beyond that: there is reference to revolution but I didn't believe it. The stakes felt really minor. Or maybe I'm bothered that the heroine only twice showed any initiative. She never made decisions she just did whatever she was told. At least Snow White comes up with the housekeeper idea, even if it is a stereotype.


Or it could just be that I've been tired and cranky all day despite the lovely rain.


Library copy 

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text 2018-09-16 09:58
Reading progress update: I've read 14%. - trying a self-published author
Civil Blood - Chris Hepler

I'm trying to balance ebooks and audiobooks for Halloween Bingo but that TBR stack is much smaller. Not a bad thing, it turns out, as it made me pay attention to this $2 self-published impulse buy.


This starts in familiar territory for videogamers. A big corporation (definitely NOT The  Umbrella Corporation - that could get a person sued) has accidentally releases a vampire virus in America and is trying to keep things quiet by rounding up the infected quietly and disposing of them. Then an infected lawyer goes public and promises revenge on whoever made the virus.


Two things have made it stand out so far:


Two strong story-lines: a first-person account from a screwed-up but kickass former enforcer for the evil corporation who has gone rogue after being infected and a third-person account focused on a senior enforcer inside the corporation who has a complex corporate history and some extraordinary talents.


A Sci Fi feel to the story rather than a traditional Urban Fantasy of Doomsday feel. There are new technologies in this near future America and some interesting politics.


Having tasted this, I'm going to eat the whole thing for my Deadlands Halloween Bingo square.

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review 2018-09-16 02:31
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown - Holly Black
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown - Holly Black

  Clever chicks who kick ass and go back to save people and are kind to smaller children...I love Tana. There's plenty of creepy atmosphere, and vampire slaying, and gore for days, but there's no swearing or sex (if that's something you look for) and in its own way it's rather wholesome. Tana and Buffy would get along well together.


Library copy

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