Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Review: The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 to 4 stars, rounded to 4, for a start in a new series.
Could have been more suspenseful.
World-building excellent, buta bit much, with all the different sexes and species.
So it took me a few books in between to get through this, but I still recommend it.

Tragedy and forced actions happens later in the book which change everything, and after that the captain has to answer to a committee of the GC (Galactic Coalition?) of non-human species, where he chose to speak freely, starting a chain reaction with political consequences. It will be interesting to see how the conflict develops in the next book(s).

Diverse, good ideas and conflict, romance in strange ways. Exploring themes which may be relevant to us soon (AI, interspecies sex, gender), all in a way which I consider very well written, better even than in Not Your Sidekick. So I have to say, THIS book deserves the 4 star even more, which I also rated the "Not your sidekick".
Will certainly read the next book sometime, not sure what I am in the mood for now.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Review: Heist Society

Heist Society Heist Society by Ally Carter
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Bought this on a whim, price was ok (ebook).
Wanted to read about a heist, so basically should have been what I wanted.
Not enough suspense or action. A lot twists, but not everything was solved (or I did not get it).
Took me a little too long to read, would have expected to read something fast, but while it did not drag, it did not really manage to keep me turning-pages either.
No sex, no death, a little romance which did not really interest me, a little bit of love-triangle, but not solved. Not sure to call the open threads cliffhanger, more like a reason to buy the next book, but it is all not enough for me to invest in this series.

Ok read for rainy day, but will most probably not read the other books in the series.
Still have a few other things from this author (free preview, short story etc.), will try to read them to make sure wether this is an author for me - I think, maybe not. Not recommended.

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Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Review: The Restless Dead:

The Restless Dead: The Restless Dead: by Simon Beckett
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

My sister mentioned she just bought the 6th David Hunter book, so I thought it was time to read this ...

As she mentioned, it was ok, but not too great, way too much infodump, even in the end to bring all together, while well written, it was not too suspenseful. A lot of twists, most I did not see coming, so for some this might be enough for a higher rating, but think, all in all there where too many twists and too many intertwined stories, could have cut 20-30% to make for a more suspenseful book.
For that it is for me 3.5 stars, rounded down to 3 for the infodumps and being too long.

As I have been burned recently by reading 2 or more of one author back2back, I will wait for the price to sink for #06 and read it later this year or next.

Still recommended, if you do not know the author yet, the crimes and descriptions are grissly and very real. The author has (like a few others) visited the (first) Body Farm, in Tennessee in Knoxville, USA. There are a few (older) standalone novels he wrote, which I thought where really bad, the writing style for the David Hunter series is much better.

If you like this I suggest Jefferson Bass a duo of Jon Jefferson, an author and journalist, and anthropologist Dr. William Bass, who invented and built the original, first Body Farm.

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Thursday, February 14, 2019

Review: Not Your Sidekick

Not Your Sidekick Not Your Sidekick by C.B. Lee
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 stars rounded up to 4, may read the next books.
Light, fluffy YA, dystopian setting, a lot of romance (LGBTQIA+), no sex, no blood, no killing, no triggers. Clean, as far as I remember no swearing (or in languages I do not speak).
Worldbuilding is well done, with the MC learning about the past.
Nice idea for a change with superheroes and villains.
Reasonably read, just the right length, could have been a bit more suspenseful, or have sex or whatever. Nice twists with the big ones in Chapter 9, more than 50% in the story. The first twist I saw coming, the second not, so thats good. Others I did not think about too much, so I was surprised.
Good well rounded show of friendship, trust and values vs. false information. With a good dose of changing history and paranoia thrown in.
Would love to this filmed 1:1, but fear too much might be changed.
Recommended. Will certainly read the next books sometime.

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Saturday, February 9, 2019

Review: Jagdbeute: Ein Ostsee-Krimi

Jagdbeute: Ein Ostsee-Krimi Jagdbeute: Ein Ostsee-Krimi by Frank Bao Carter
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

German book, no translation. Not recommended.
Abandoned.
DNF during 1. Chapter.
Blurp and lesen.net email promised a good book, but that did not happen.
Thrown into action without explanation and prologue or introduction, it read like the beginning of some cheap would-be erotic. Not sure wether this at some point in time was really sold, I got an email from lesen.net that it is free, and grabbed it, after reading the blurb from lesen.net, which is imho way off.
Do not pay for it, if it is free or can be lent, and might be for you, grab it, else, I cannot describe it more, as the style did not appeal to me, and I DNFed it very early, so cannot say more about it.
As my choice of cheap/free ebooks is sometimes really bad, trusting the blurb for each book too much, I will probably try to DNF a lot of books early, so as to read better stuff.

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Review: Never Somewhere Else

Never Somewhere Else Never Somewhere Else by Alex Gray
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Recommended by Paul here on Goodreads, stumbled over the author again in the Bookperk daily email with cheap and free ebooks (although that was for another book in the series).

From the notes at night in bed from iPhone:
Should be a Crime to write so boring! Unlikeable characters and no suspense so far. Did not gripp me. DNF (did-not-finish), abandoned at 13%, will try to remember to not read this author again.

This was supposed to play in Glasgow, not that I felt it.
For some reason after reading the blurb I thought one of the main characters was a woman (prefer crimes with a female MC), but it was not, and the two men where as bland as could be. Also for some reason this book felt older, more like 70ies/80ies with the remarks and phrases.
Not for me, and cannot honestly bore someone else with it, do not buy, wasted money.

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Friday, February 1, 2019

Review: The Acid Suite

The Acid Suite The Acid Suite by Craig Lea Gordon
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Received an ARC from Booksprout for review
Chose this under the wrong impression what this would be.
What it is is 4 very short stories, 8-10 pages each, giving less than 40 pages
to read.
World-Building was good in most, but while it is all SF, most are also
Horror, which I read in the past, but do not really need nowadays.
The titles:
- Bad Hands, was ok, Rebellion, would like something longer from that world. 3-3.5 stars for this alone.
- The Machine, pure Horror, and first of two twists I saw coming from a certain point in the story, another one (the last one) not, but that did not save. Also, due to content I only read this in FF, skipping passages. Bloody and boring. 1.5-2 star, with 2 only for the final twist.
- Theatre of Death, more Horror than SF, with a bit of fantasy thrown in, although I must admit, I did not understand all of the story, felt like it was cut from a bigger one, which was needed to understand it. 1 star. Nothing to write home about.
- Transmit this one is real SF, but again too short for me. 2.5-3 stars.
All together 2 stars. Will not bother with this author again and I think this should be added for free to a longer book rather than sold separately or put together with other short stories in a bigger collection.
Reading a lot of SF and the ongoing "The Expanse"-Series, there I enjoyed the short novellas and even paid for them (thinking too much, though), but that where all longer than this short number - ok, they where mostly novellas, not short stories, but still this felt like not enough meat for me.

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Monday, January 28, 2019

Review: Bridge to Burn: A gripping British detective murder mystery

Bridge to Burn: A gripping British detective murder mystery Bridge to Burn: A gripping British detective murder mystery by Rachel Amphlett
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Better than the last book, mote twists which kept me guessing.
Also the police-work and even little scenes (working at a computer etc.) are very well done and felt real to me (wiggeling the mouse to wake up the coomputer, although it was repeated a bit much in the book).
Like in the last book, taking place now and in the UK and still not a word about BREXIT.

Read this back2back with "Gone to ground", the previous book in the series.
Highly Recommended. Nice fast read.

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Review: Gone to Ground

Gone to Ground Gone to Ground by Rachel Amphlett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

From the mailing list of the author I received an email that this is to be published July 8th, 2018 and a few retailers allowed pre-ordering it today (June 10th, 2018), ebook.de (in Germany) among them. Amazon will surely follow soon.
Also there was a link to excerpt from the book, although I downloaded it, I am not so sure I will read it, as I do not like to be stopped reading.
All books by this author I read so far where great, 4 or 5 star reads for me, so I am looking forward to it, and will probably read it in one sitting or on a weekend, which really is not a good idea with an excerpt, but we'll see, may be I cannot wait.
3.5 stars as the story was a little too straight, not enough twists. Rounded up to 4.
Although taking place now and in the UK not a word about BREXIT, strange, it should have been mentioned.
Recommended. Nice fast read.

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Review: Gone to Ground

Gone to Ground Gone to Ground by Rachel Amphlett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

From the mailing list of the author I received an email that this is to be published July 8th, 2018 and a few retailers allowed pre-ordering it today (June 10th, 2018), ebook.de (in Germany) among them. Amazon will surely follow soon.
Also there was a link to excerpt from the book, although I downloaded it, I am not so sure I will read it, as I do not like to be stopped reading.
All books by this author I read so far where great, 4 or 5 star reads for me, so I am looking forward to it, and will probably read it in one sitting or on a weekend, which really is not a good idea with an excerpt, but we'll see, may be I cannot wait.
3.5 stars as the story was a little too straight, not enough twists. Rounded up to 4.
Although taking place now and in the UK not a word about BREXIT, strange, it should have been mentioned.
Recommended. Nice fast read.

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Review: Spartan Promise

Spartan Promise Spartan Promise by Jennifer Estep
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Pre-ordered this. Like the series, although it is bit repetitive.
3.5 stars rounded to 4.
No cliffhanger for once! Nice clean read, romance, no sex.
Still recommended.

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Review: Der Tote im Strandkorb

Der Tote im Strandkorb Der Tote im Strandkorb by Anna Johannsen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Mit Prime Reading geliehen
Empfehlung, spannend und durchdacht, Ende allerdings etwas zu glatt.

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Review: Zerschunden

Zerschunden Zerschunden by Michael Tsokos
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Etwas heftig (graphische Beschreibungen von Folter und Mord), aber durchaus spannend und lesenswert. Empfehlung

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Review: Spuren der Gewalt

Spuren der Gewalt Spuren der Gewalt by Michael Tsokos
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Kostenlose Kurzgeschichte (32 Seiten oder so), nette Ergänzung.

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Review: CRISPR

CRISPR CRISPR by Lincoln Cole
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 rounded to 4* more action than science, action was very good, but some personal
conversations between the MC's male and female where too repetitive and boring.
Longer review to follow and be published when I feel like it.

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Friday, January 4, 2019

Review: Totwasser

Totwasser Totwasser by Julia Hofelich
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First book started and finished in 2019. Should clean up my lists, instead I normally start another book, to let it fall by the wayside instead of deciding to mark it DNF and moving it to the "abandoned" list.
But this one was really good, after a bad 2018 regarding my choice of books, I hope to do better this year. Also, I have reduced my reading challenge this year to 78 books, after I missed that on Goodreads the second year running (being 104 books, two books per week). One of the reasons was, that I read quite a few novellas and books I could not review for one reason or the other. And I sometimes did not think about a review and instead only rated it and wrote "review follows later", but often I never wrote one even later.

So, this one is a single female as MC, who had a bad accident leaving her paranoid, scarred and limping with one of her legs. But how she gets through her fears, which are sometimes even justified, was very well written and integrated into the story.
The case was with quite a few twists, which kept me guessing, and different scenarios where played through, so both me as the reader and the MC (and most other persons) did not know what happened, or who died when. This changes a few time through the book, and while not all is totally page-turning suspenseful at roughly 70% or 80% I could not stop reading.
No sex, a little romance.
Suggest to look up Cornwall, UK with Google Earth, there are quite a few beautiful place pictured, took a vacation there with my parents, oh, wow, 1984/5, so long ago.
One idea mentioned is a Keltish Ritual, for fertility of a Woman (Witch), quite grissly.
Killings and other things are quite real, but not too brutal or detailed described. But Trigger Warnings, some ideas mentioned are quite perverted, I will not go into detail as not to spoil it, but again, not very detailed, imho, so even if you try to avaid certain themes, they do not go so deep.

First in a series, but just published (December 21st, 2018 is listed on Goodreads, also only Kindle and only German, so I should write a German review).
Highly recommended 5stars, no logic errors, no bad grammar or spelling, no swearing (or not much and mild). Will try to follow this author and read the next one(s) in the series if they are not too expensive. This one cost me less than 4 Eur, which is ok for me.
If this gets translated into English, I suggest trying it, although it may not hold the same interest for an English speaking person as it did to me as a German.


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Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Review: Faceless

Faceless Faceless by Rob Ashman
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Bought today after I read Petra's review and it was cheap (less than 1 Eur/1.10 Us$ as Kindle eBook). This should be right up my alley.

Well, it was not, the point re the MC in the review linked is not the only bad point against it.
Rate this 2.5 rounded down to 2, not recommended.
Could have been way better with a few cuts and a different ending.
Basically (not to spoil anything but that will be hard) I hate it when the MC does the following: goes alone to try to solve the case and does not tell anyone, so no can follow her. Then the main ending I saw coming since nearly the introduction, with a little twist I by the MC I really do not like. A different outcome would have been way better, I like criminals to get what they deserve - jail time.

Then there is a scene (nearly exactly 50% into the book if I remember right) that gets outdrawn
and played to a boring death - it shows nearly everyone as stupid, which is too simple and not convincing to me. Again, it was way too long, and while I did not guess how that that happened in the beginning, it was explained, and some did not catch on quick, which I simply cannot believe of all persons involved, the fall guy, ok, he was stupid enough, but the others?
While the action took place in the greater Manchester area (not London for once, for which I am glad), that did not save the book, and some expressions and swaering felt too much US like - what I really like about some other books taking place in the UK is the use of way different swear words than in US books and sometimes way different slang - which did not happen here, it was at times the overused words like Bitch and swearing used a little too much or in the wrong place - not disturbing, but could have been better, at least other words.

Also for a book published in 2018 taking place in the UK Brexit should have been mentioned, at least in passing.

The main criminal was way better thought out than the backstory of the MC and I could have cared more about him, but did not really like him (her).

All that together and as it was the book was a little long and took me too long as it dragged me along, but I wanted to finish it, it did not feel like a DNF.
Too little suspense for me.
So, not recommended, and will gladly not read anymore of this author, as I do not care wether the probably following books get better or not (which is sometimes the case).

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