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review 2016-08-23 03:03
Lola Review
Lola: A Novel - Melissa Love

Lola, by Melissa Love, reads like a television drama. If you're a fan of shows like Breaking Bad and Sons of Anarchy, you should like this book. That being said, the book is not without its problems.

If you're a medical professional of any kind, this book is likely to have you rolling your eyes or fuming more than half a dozen times. The medical inaccuracies were ludicrous and easily fixable. Nothing consulting a nurse wouldn't have fixed. The problems are as follows (slight spoilers ahead):

#1. Character has finger cut off and reattached and contracts sepsis all under 24 hours. I was a CNA for five years, and during that time I was trained and became a certified phlebotomist. I drew plenty of cultures in those five years. Cultures, the tests used to diagnose sepsis, take 24-48 hours to grow results.

#2. The symptoms of infection take hours to develop. Even if they tested this character the minute he hit the ER, there's no way he could have been diagnosed and admitted for sepsis because they would have had no reason to even check for sepsis.

#3. I'm sure there are shitty hospital employees out there who do not give a shit about HIPPA rules and regs, but who gives out a patient's diagnosis and personal info to someone who's only asking for a fucking room number?

To paraphrase:

Person: "Hey, I'm looking for so-and-so."

Hospital personnel: "Right. He's in room what's-its-fuck and by the way they were able to reattach his finger and he was admitted because he has sepsis."

Person: "Great. I'm so-and-so by the way."

Hospital personnel: "Oh, cool. He's been asking about you."

If you've never worked for a hospital, none of this is going to bother you. Needless to say, it bothered the fuck out of me because I was enjoying the realistic feel of the book. It took me over half the book to get back into the story because I was pissed that the author couldn't be bothered with simple fact checking.

Another thing that took me out of the story was zero mention of smog. It's always clear blue skies and gorgeous vistas in this book. I lived in California for 15 years, was born and raised there. The sky always looked like a smoky bar unless the Santa Anas had blown through. This might sound like me being nit-picky, but not mentioning smog in a story set in southern California is like writing about Egypt without mentioning sand.

Finally, as far as accuracy is concerned, I've been a member of three different gyms in my life. None of them allowed you to keep items in their lockers overnight, much less for several days. That being said, some might. So I might be wrong, but I doubt it. Lockers in gyms are prime real estate, and I don't believe any company would risk tying up lockers by giving them permanently to customers. Besides, they would eventually run out.

All of that killed my rating for this one. The story itself is a five-star read, as is the quality of the writing. A little more research would've made this a runner for my book of the year. I loved the characters, especially Lola and Lucy. If the author decides to write a sequel, I'll definitely pick it up.

In summation: Lola is a terrific story that is well-written yet horribly researched. All of the problems in this book are easily fixable, but it didn't seem like anyone wanted to be bothered with checking the facts. If you can ignore the impossiblities and inaccuracies, you should dig it, but my life-experience ruined the book for me. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC, which I received for free in return for the honest review you've just read.

Final Judgment: Donald-Trump levels of fact checking.

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review 2016-07-22 17:30
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Red Queen - Victoria Aveyard

After reading many glowing reviews of this book I was really looking forward to being blown away. Unfortunately, <i>Red Queen</i> fell short of my expectations.

Mare Barrow is a lowly Red and she's a lot like so many other heroines that you could probably interchange them and there wouldn't be much of difference personality wise. She's ruff, unladylike, hates makeup, fancy clothing, and everything that would make her seem feminine because heaven forbid we have a badass character that likes feminine things. The world would probably implode. Enough with the heroines that aren't pretty and judge other girls for wanting to wear dresses and makeup. It seems like most of the books I read have characters like this and normally it doesn't bother me if a character doesn't want to be feminine, but it was especially annoying in this book. It was just another way to set Mare apart for the other girls in the court and create more of a divide between her and Evangeline.

Evangeline is character that I could have done without. From the moment the two girls meet, they hate each other. Evangeline is portrayed as this stuck up bitch with a whole group of girls just like her and it's a constant battle between her and Mare. There is no depth to Evangeline's character and it's widely accepted by many characters that she's a bitch.

There's also a sort of love square going on and I was never really hoping that Mare would end up with anyone. I was leaning towards Maven, but that quickly went south, although I think he might be my favorite character. I wasn't overly fond of Cal, mostly because I didn't understand why he liked Mare. They didn't know each other and they barely spent time together. I'm actually satisfied with how the events at the end of the book played out because it wouldn't have been realistic if Mare's plan actually worked. I don't have much of an opinion on Kilorn, mostly because he's hardly even in the book.

The thing that saved this book was that I felt compelled to keep reading. The plot was engaging, even though it wasn't the most original. I loved the diversity of abilities and I really enjoyed reading about Mare's ability because it isn't very common in books that I've read. I'll probably end up reading the next one because I kind of like the villain and it will be interesting to see where the story goes.

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review 2015-07-14 16:38
Another KU book for the DNF pile.
Wind Catcher (Chosen Book 1) - Jeff Altabef,Erynn Altabef,Megan Harris

It was okay, but didn't hold my interested. Tossed in DNF pile at 25% of the way in.

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review 2015-04-23 23:28
Slugs Review
Slugs - Shaun Hutson

You can't eat steak all the time. Sometimes, you want a plate of ribs. Shit, sometimes you want a Slim Jim, or, Tom Cruise forbid, a can of SPAM. Well, this plate of meat has gone over some time ago and is crawling with maggots and rot. It's bad, and not even in a TROLL 2 so-bad-it's-fun-to-watch-while-you're-high-on-crank bad either. Slugs treats its readers like idiots. I know I feel like a moron for finishing it. But can you blame me for wanting a can of SPAM between sirloins?

Slugs is an absolute mess. An absolute mess that managed to get a sequel and a truly horrible film adaptation. Don't get me wrong, the book is not better than the movie. It's about the same. Both are terrible. I don't suggest either one.

Let's list the problems with the book, shall we?

The entire story revolves around a health inspector named Mike Brady trying to save a small town from carnivorous slugs. Brady refuses to go to the cops because they won't believe him. Great, I can dig... wait. He has proof. He's had proof since the beginning of the book because he snagged three of these flesh-eating slugs to take to his normalist buddy who works in a museum. So why doesn't he just show the cops the slugs? Beats me. Why doesn't he show the water authority guy later in the book? Beats me. Seems he would have shown someone else these things, you know, since they're literally dropping out of his fucking plumbing.

Which brings me to problem #2. These nasty little buggers are drip-drip-dripping out of Brady's sink. Only the health inspector who's decided to take these creatures on by himself is having this problem. Are the slugs sentient? Are they targeting Brady with their terrorist plot so that he won't disturb their plans for global domination? Are they... you know what, fuck it. It's stupid is what it is. Why the health inspector is the only person on the block who has slugs dropping from his pipes is never explained. And this is another example of him having the proof needed to either convince the cops or get the water authority to cut off the water. To top it all off, a guy dies in public, in a fucking restaurant, and the whole incident is swept under the rug. Oh well! His eye ball only exploded and a big-as-fuck white worm crawled from his gory eye socket, but fuck all that because REASONS, BITCHES!!! My point is this: The cops, at some point in time, would have gotten involved. It would have been obvious that this wasn't a serial killer, so the next thing would have been wildlife or infectious disease. They would have at least listened to Brady. #truth

#3 on our list of idiotic shit is the fact that we're dealing with slugs. In case you don't know, slugs are snails without shells and move about as fast. Everybody who dies in this book is a fucking idiot. They either fall into a roiling mass of slugs, sit still while the slugs devour them, or swallow the slugs. No shit. One guy literally bites into one of these things and swallows it without ever thinking that swallowing it might have been a bad idea. I know when I bite into something nasty, I spit it out. But that's just me. Anyway, one chick lays around while a slug crawls up her nu-nu. She literally just sits there screaming and lets it slither into her lady bits. I don't have a nu-nu, but I image one would want to protect such a vital part of one's anatomy.

And the fourth reason this book is a pile of shit is the writing. Oh, it's fucking terrible. There's over thirty instances of someone asking a question followed by the dialogue tag he wanted to know.

Example: "Why are you a bad writer?" he wanted to know.

Of course he wanted to know. He was asking a question. Not only is this the most useless dialogue tag I've seen, but it's repeated ad nauseum. The closer I got to the end of the book, the more Hutson used it. Over and over again. Are you tired of me harping on this shit? Yeah? Well, he continued to use it just like I'm continuing to harp on it. It's lazy writing. Couple that with suspicious comma usage and sentences like Brady smile, triumphantly (Not Brady smiled, not Brady smiles, but Brady smile) and I can safely say this book was never introduced to an editor.

In summation: This started out as a fun b-horror romp and quickly turned into the stupidest shit I've read in decades. I bought several Hutson novels at my local UBS because I liked the covers and some of my horror friends recommended him. I now understand why there were so many of his novels for sale at a secondhand shop. I'll be trading them all back in posthaste.

Final Judgment: The author could've at least tried.

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review 2015-04-12 05:20
Netflix: Marvel's Daredevil First Impression

 

Along comes a series to wipe out the detriment to society that was 2003's Daredevil, which starred the uber-jawed Ben Affleck in the titular role, and I gotta say, this new Daredevil is... meh. In comparison, Marvel's Daredevil is Citizen Kane to Affleck's Toxic Avenger, but that doesn't make it good. I think a lot of people will love this simply because it doesn't star Bennifer Part Deux, and that's really too bad.

 

Let's get the personal shit out of the way. I hate the actor who plays Foggy. He's got the acting chops of Rodin's Thinker, and I kept wishing that his mother would come out of the shadows to wash his fucking hair. Every time he had a "serious" scene he looked like he wanted to burst out laughing, as if he kept making up the funniest shit in his head and didn't bother sharing it with anyone else. It was annoying and distracting, and I disliked every scene with him in it. He also has a punchable face, at least for me he does. One of those mugs that simply makes me want to do violence. And I'm a pretty amiable motherfucker. 

 

Personal shit out of the way, there's problems with the actual show. Unfortunately, the biggest problem being Daredevil's Wolverine-like self-healing capabilities. I never read the comic books. If this is a thing that exists (him being able to completely heal all facial wounds just by sleeping through the night), my bad. If this is never explained in the show, shame on them. Because Daredevil gets the brakes beaten off him and is no worse for wear come the next day. At one point he's literally spitting blood into a rain puddle, but the next day he doesn't have so much as a split lip. This, more so than even Foggy's shit performance, kinda ruined things for me. 

 

Furthermore, I do not want a league of Daredevil fanboys befalling me, screaming their arguments of "He can heal himself in the comics!" because I don't give a fuck. I have not read the comics, so the show should explain this. Fugoff!

 

Will I continue watching? Yeah. Overall, I don't hate it , only Foggy. I dug the fight scenes. They were stylistic while being somewhat believable, and I like the cat who plays Murdock. He's just the right mix of cocky and humble. 

 

In summation: I'm hoping this series will grow on me as it shuffles through its growing pains. I hope that Foggy dies a brutal death at the hands of sexual deviants, and that the Pepper Pots wannabe becomes more than just a damsel-in-distress character, 'cause, for real, the actress who plays her is great, but the character herself is kinda one note.

 

Final Judgement: Unexplainably punchable with self-healing capabilities.

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