Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Review: Cry Wolf

Cry Wolf
Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

For some reason I had this marked as "read", but could not find it (the supposed paperback) and cannot remember reading it. Maybe it will come back when I read it, but I just read the prequel story Alpha & Omega in "On the prowl" and in it the people read like new to me, so I guess I marked it read by mistake and just rated it 4 stars. When I finish it, I will think about the rating and justify it or change it accordingly, but so far 4 stars feel right. Bought the Kindle version today, so if I have somewhere the paperback lying around, which given my huge stack of TBR real-paper-deadwood books around my rooms is a real possibility, I now own it twice.
Nope, I am sure, I have not read it before.
And I had to rate it 3 stars. The story is too straight for me, not complicated enough, and too much (werewolf) romance. Sex only hinted at, not detailed, but with a bit of werewolf thrown in.
Could have been more complicated or the sex more explicit.
The main players where interesting, but some things where explained again and again, or too much.
No real twists and the end was clear nearly from the get-go, only leaving open who would die, and even then the only real surprise how many lived.
Also no vampires so far, but there was a preview of a Mercy Thompson book, I skimmed, and there where vampires. Still might be interesting so see what Briggs does with them.
Will probably read the next book in the series, and might go for other books of her, but given I have a lot of backlog to read, not anytime soon.
So, still a recommendation if you can stand the romance, and a solid 3stars.

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Friday, January 23, 2015

Review: The Bone Season

The Bone Season
The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

In the beginning it started with too much explaining but as the world and the rules later even get more complicated, I can accept that.
Great ideas and fantasy world.
Only little romance, more like hints. One short sex-scene, fast and for some maybe kinky.
Also no love triangle, for those who hate these.
Two love-twists which where great, one of them I did not see coming, both turn out the way I like ...
A great story so far, and I cannot really wait for the next book which as of now is less than a week from being published (Jan 27,th 2015), lucky me!
A complicated world, and due to the changes since 1859 (I think), not very realistic, but totally escapist story of the beginning of a revolution, the second one in the timeline of this world, since clairvoyants where recognized.
As this is supposed to be a trilogy, and the next book is not even published, I cannot say more, but this book as a standalone with an end is great, although a lot of things can go wrong or right in the next book, I recommend it highly and a solid 5star.

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Thursday, January 15, 2015

Review: The Fault in Our Stars

The Fault in Our Stars
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

tl;dr-version of the review: Life sucks and then you die!
Christmas 2014 and I thought I could read something more significant as usual, like something deep.
This has been made into the movie and the Blu-ray is waiting to be seen in my cupboard, which I plan to do before the end of this year after reading the book.
Due to a good deal and because I wanted to try it, I bought the book both in the ebook-Kindle-version and in audio-version, hoping Whispersync will work good.
First surprise, Whispersync does not work between iTunes and Kindle. Ok, not totally unexpected.
Actually while the books could certainly be described as deep, it is also kind of uplifting and funny, despite the gloom matter.
Did not make it, took a break from reading the book and so did not see the film (added January 03d, 2015).
Five books, then I pulled myself together and finished it.
Actually the surprise was, everyone dies (no, this is no spoiler, you knew that right from the beginning, life it is, not the book).
A few twists and a book-story within the book.
So, funny little book, which might make some people cry, due to the subject matter, but actually: so what? That's life for you, only for some the time period till dying is shorter and more painful.
If you like this, I suggest reading Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk, these books are very similar, especially when you consider the underlying themes and not the obvious surface.
Solid 5star, I hope the Movie is as good. Highly recommended.

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Review: Ultraviolet

Ultraviolet by Joseph Robert Lewis

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Lend with Amazon Prime, one book free per month, this is for January 2015.
While the ending is a bit too clean and cozy, this is a top-notch read.
In the tradition of [a:Cory Doctorow|12581|Cory Doctorow|]'s [b:Little Brother|12361354|Little Brother|Cory Doctorow||939584] and [b:Homeland|12917338|Homeland (Little Brother, #2)|Cory Doctorow||18072409], this is set in a not too distant future, and focuses mainly on the influence the advance of 3d-printing will have, while in the grip of big corporations, even with rampant copying of designs and information somehow restricted in the internet of the USA. While not all is too realistic, due to the focus of one (later two) game changing invention, it is gripping and fast paced.
The main heroine is a good person and I really like her. Little time for romance, and sex only hinted at late in the book.
For me this is a clear 5star, and although it lacks the depth of books of [a:Daniel Suarez|1956402|Daniel Suarez|], fans of that author and of Doctorow should check it out.
And I would really like to see this filmed. As this is neatly concluded, no trilogy or sequel in sight (would pick that up instantly, though).
Highly recommended near future SF.

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Saturday, January 10, 2015

Review: The Senior Moment

The Senior Moment
The Senior Moment by Eva Hudson

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Got this cheap as an edition with the other 2 Women Sleuths book.
No Angela Tate here, which is just as well.
Too long, the ending with a nice conclusion to nearly all story-lines, was good, which saved it from getting 1 star.
Not all endings will satisfy, but are realistic and some things open to interpretation.
The main characters where sometimes annoying but well developed and interesting, the growing up of a serial-killer was very good and may warrant for some a third star, but the seniors where over the top for me, and while believable individually, altogether too much and some too annoying. Some points where too drawn out or repeated.
No recommended, if the third book is not really better (I fear not), these 3 books together are not worthy of Eva Hudson (the Skyberg books are better).
This book gets a rare warning from me, do not waste any money on it (the cheap 0.99 Eur I paid for all three books where even too much, and that was an info from the Hudson-Mailing-List, me thinking what could go wrong...).
Barely 2 stars, do not read, waste of time.

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Monday, January 5, 2015

Review: All Good Deeds

All Good Deeds
All Good Deeds by Stacy Green

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was selected as BOTM (Book of the Month) read for January 2015 in the Goodreads Group "Psychological Thrillers" of which I am a member.
After I skipped such obvious bad choices like Stephen King and did not manage to read Hit List in time, barely reading a few pages, I will try to read this in January 2015.
Depending on how it grips me. As the discussion in "Psychological Thrillers" started early I skimmed it, and it sounds interesting.
Also I bought the book late in 2014, so the price change due to changing laws on January, 01st 2015 in the EU and therefore Germany did not affect me.
Prices of non-German ebooks might rise due to the tax which is calculated from 2015 on according to the country in which they are sold, which is 19% now in Germany (before Amazon, Apple and maybe others chose a loophole and charged a lot less).
Ok, sorry for the OT-rant.

The book is a gripping-page-turner, with enough suspects to keep this interesting, although so far it is bit like the sometimes mentioned railroad, there might be a fork, but mostly the book goes in one direction. A few books, even from bestselling, well known writers like [a:Val McDermid|5672|Val McDermid|], tend to drag a bit in the middle. This might be the case here, but I will try to read fast to either get past that part or see that it does not.
At this point it is also not entirely clear who are the good guys and girls, I suspect a twist regarding the Kidnapper and wether or even if! it is a kidnapping, so far there could be other solutions. The missing girl could have had an accident and slowly be starving of first (now that would be my kind of twist, if the dead body was found later - just be glad I do not write books).

Oh, wow, just had the two twists at the 53%-mark, about, hm, ok, will not spoil it and ..., one I did see coming, but the devil is in the details, and while it was signaled before there was a secret and expected, what really happened in the past, I did not see coming. Great twists, both of them.
And shortly after that a third one, that was even more of a surprise, but also a stretch to believe, just bordering on Fantasy-Island.
Later, near the end, a few loose ends, with a strong one for the next book in the series.
The 5 stars I gave are maybe a bit much, more like 4.5, because the last twists and the show-stopper near the end, where a bit much and too unbelievable convenient.
If the series goes in the same direction, it might end up like Dexter (the books by [a:Jeff Lindsay|10482|Jeff Lindsay|]): a very good idea, with some brillant ideas but loosing steam in the later books, with the first being the best. But as with Dexter I will certainly read the next one(s) in the series.
Highly recommended page-turner, also the background very real and even in the details well researched what can be done and what not (with an IP-Adress or other tech), I could not detect any errors, and that is certainly a rare plus for this up-to-date-tech in books (which we will hopefully see more often from tech-savy writers, not anymore blundering along with a typewriter from the last century).

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Friday, January 2, 2015

Review: Pray for Silence

Pray for Silence
Pray for Silence by Linda Castillo

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

More deaths (7 with the crime-scene spread over 3 places), torture, rape (again), more blood, and faults by Kate.
If you can stand it, a great read, but everything is worse than in the first book.
Most I said there can be applied here as well, so I will not repeat it.

A few nice twists, some romance, no sex (well off-the-pages).
One minor quibble: for me it took them too long to identify some scruff-marks in the barn-crime-scene.
That was obvious for me from the get-go.
Otherwise hard and gruesome page-turner.

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