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review 2014-02-22 14:49
29 Myths on the Swinster Pharmacy
29 Myths on the Swinster Pharmacy - Lemony Snicket,Lisa Brown

 

I love Mr Snicket but I'd have to say that the best thing about this book was that it lead me to this book (I wonder if this is one of Lemony's favorite books?!)

 

 

 

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review 2013-10-11 20:30
Belladonna (Ephemera, Book 2)
Belladonna - Anne Bishop Belladona is the sequel and conclusion to Sebastian, which should be read first. I do love Anne Bishop's Black Jewels series--I could find fault with them, sure, but they featured characters and a world I love to return to, and I've read those books more than once with pleasure. The two Ephemera books just don't rise to that level--I can't see ever rereading them. The world-building is wonderful, and in that regard matches or surpasses in imagination the Black Jewels novels with its shifting landscapes that resonate with your soul. As with Black Jewels I like the ways that Bishop plays with concepts of good and evil, light and dark in unexpected and creative ways. I think part of the problem for me is that Sebastian is too reminiscent of Black Jewels' Daemon and Belladona of that series' Jaenelle, but neither feel as fresh or as engaging or as well-developed. That said, I enjoyed both books, and I think this is the stronger of the two.
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review 2013-10-11 20:30
Sebastian (Ephemera, Book 1)
Sebastian - Anne Bishop I'm a fan of Anne Bishop's Black Jewels series, which I highly recommend. I'm not as taken with her Ephemera books coming from that series; I found Sebastian in personality far too reminiscent of Daemon, her hero in that series and her heroine, Lynnea, irritated me more than anything (or more precisely, she's the novel's love interest--Belladona who has the next book is the true heroine. For what it's worth, I did like that second Ephemera book better). However, some of the same qualities that led me to love the Jewels books can be found here as well. Bishop has a gift for spinning richly imaginative worlds and Ephemara is a fine example of that with its Landscapers and Bridges shaping the shattered lands that can be reached if they match your heart and true desires. If three stars is "okay" and four "recommended" this novel really hovers between, with a three the appropriate rating when I measure this against Bishop's output--not as good as the best of Black Jewels, about as good as the weakest in that series, better than the Tir Alainn Series, which I didn't stay with. On the whole I enjoyed it.
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review 2013-03-17 00:00
Bridge of Dreams (Ephemera, #3)
Bridge of Dreams (Ephemera, #3) - Anne Bishop Not as heart stopping as the first two but I still really enjoyed this book, like every other Anne Bishop novel. I hope she writes more books for the Ephemera series!
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review 2013-02-19 00:00
Sebastian - Anne Bishop I was surprised at how much I liked this book. It says "romance" all over the cover, so while I was browsing through Barnes & Noble I'd picked it up and discarded it before, because I am not generally a romance fan. However, I was waiting for my sister to finish up her shopping, so I picked this one up again and flicked through some sections of it. At some point I found myself reading an awesome description of Ephemera, the world this book is set in. I'd never heard of anything quite like it, so I bought it, and I read it . . . and much to my surprise, I enjoyed it.

Anne Bishop is one of those authors that a lot of fantasy fans swear by; I wouldn't say, forming my opinions of this book, that she's quite that extraordinary, but she's definitely a great writer and I'm still shocked that I liked almost all of the main characters. Lynnea and Sebastian and Glorianna and even Teaser--by the time the book started to wrap up, I'd grown attached to them all. They're nicely three-dimensional characters, and each one balances out the others perfectly. I'd love to follow their adventures further.

I didn't think this was a romance book, for the record. Yes, the protagonist is an incubus and yes, Lynnea spent more than a few pages crying about wanting somebody to love her, but overall my impression of this book isn't a romance. It has action, horror, romance, and a hefty dose of fantasy, but no one really seems to be more obvious than the others.

My main problems with this book, and the reason I didn't give it five stars, is that it is more adult than most books I voluntarily pick out, and that it was irritating to me when Anne Bishop kept referring to the villain as It. Compared to the imagination and depth she lavished on the rest of the book, "It" just struck a sour chord with me.

Either way, this is definitely a book I'll read again, and I'll be hunting for the sequel soon. If you like deep fantasy and don't mind more than one or two POV's, I definitely recommend it.
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