Monday, June 27, 2016

Night Shift by Charlaine Harris

From Goodreads:

At Midnight’s local pawnshop, weapons are flying off the shelves—only to be used in sudden and dramatic suicides right at the main crossroads in town.

Who better to figure out why blood is being spilled than the vampire Lemuel, who, while translating mysterious texts, discovers what makes Midnight the town it is. There’s a reason why witches and werewolves, killers and psychics, have been drawn to this place.

And now they must come together to stop the bloodshed in the heart of Midnight. For if all hell breaks loose—which just might happen—it will put the secretive town on the map, where no one wants it to be...


I am so sad to be saying goodbye to the residents of Midnight, Texas in this last book of the trilogy! I feel like we'd just really warmed up to them all, their quirks, their secrets, their abilities, and now it's over! A lot happens in this third book, most of it very spoilery if you haven't read the first two. There is a lot of big weirdness, some big reveals that I really didn't see coming, and while I did enjoy Night Shift, I really feel like it could have been made into a longer series that explored the characters more. Each book was successively more paranormal than the last as each of the residents is revealed for what they are, or what they can do.  Some you start out knowing and their talents grow or develop in different ways, some wait until near the end to show themselves in their glory, though you begin to suspect earlier on.

While I have a few personal criticisms of the plot, I really am sorry to see it end, and you know that when you feel that way, it was a good story, with well developed characters that have come to life.  There were character crossovers with Harris' other series, Manfred from the Harper Connelly series (probably my favorite of her stories), and I suspect Lemuel's associates may have appeared in the Sookie Stackhouse series though I'm only a few books in, so it's possible we'll see some of Midnight's townfolk again somewhere down the line.  Hope springs eternal!

Challenges:
2016 New Releases Challenge
2016 I Love Libraries Challenge
E9 of the COYER Bingo Challenge

Saturday, June 18, 2016

COYER - Clean Out Your E-Reader Summer 2016 - June 18 - September 2, 2016

ChallengeSUMMER
What is it?

A read and review-a-thon that takes place from June 18th through Sept 2nd. Originally intended to help you work off those e-reader freebies, the Summer COYER throws those rules away and lets you read anything you want, any price you want, library books, freebies, review copies, your own purchased books, anything!

Where do you sign up?

Check out the rules and regs (I thought you said we threw away the rules?! We did, sort of, but you still have to sign up in the right place and do challenges in the right place, that kind of thing) at Fantasy is more Fun, Because Reading or Books, Movies, Reviews! Oh My!. All three have the same sign up, so you can go to any of them.

Then what?

Read! Read like the wind!  Do some reviews and just have fun! We also have a facebook group!

Currently Reading:




Finished - To Be Reviewed:

   


Reviewed:


Monday, June 13, 2016

Make Me Read It Read-a-thon - July 9th - 16th



This is my first time joining this read-a-thon, but since I love voting things, this sounds like fun! In this read-a-thon, you make a list of books that you want/need to read, and your friends vote on them from now until the read-a-thon starts, then you begin reading with the most popular choice and see how far you can get down the list! If you think that sounds like fun and want to join in, check out the sign up post over at The Innocent Smiley! We'd love to have you! Because it means more voting, heehee!

For my list I'm including all of the "Pick it for me" books that I've had chosen for me, but not gotten around to yet, a couple from this year's Hugo Nominations that I need to get read before I can vote for best novel, and a few from other authors that will be at MidAmericon that I haven't read anything by yet, but want to before we go! I will probably only get to 2 of maybe 3 of these if I'm lucky.

Here are links to them on Goodreads so you can see what they are about:



Vote Here

Results

I can't wait to see what you pick for me!

Monday, June 06, 2016

The Fold by Peter Clines

The FoldThe Fold by Peter Clines

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Synopsis:

STEP INTO THE FOLD.
IT’S PERFECTLY SAFE.

The folks in Mike Erikson's small New England town would say he's just your average, everyday guy. And that's exactly how Mike likes it. Sure, the life he's chosen isn’t much of a challenge to someone with his unique gifts, but he’s content with his quiet and peaceful existence.

That is, until an old friend presents him with an irresistible mystery, one that Mike is uniquely qualified to solve: far out in the California desert, a team of DARPA scientists has invented a device they affectionately call the Albuquerque Door. Using a cryptic computer equation and magnetic fields to “fold” dimensions, it shrinks distances so that a traveler can travel hundreds of feet with a single step.

The invention promises to make mankind’s dreams of teleportation a reality. And, the scientists insist, traveling through the Door is completely safe.

Yet evidence is mounting that this miraculous machine isn’t quite what it seems—and that its creators are harboring a dangerous secret.

As his investigations draw him deeper into the puzzle, Mike begins to fear there’s only one answer that makes sense. And if he’s right, it may only be a matter of time before the project destroys…everything.

****************

My Review:

This starts out as an intellectual, scientific mystery, and ends with quite a bit of action. The mystery is fascinating and eerie, the perpetrators forcing the action I felt was kind of at odds with the rest of the book. I felt like their development wasn't quite up to the same standard as the detail that went into the problem itself. And the very end, well, that was pretty convenient, but also totally opens the way for a series of books.

I did like Mike a lot, the rest of the characters were fine, some had more personality than others, Olaf seemed to be a much more developed character than Neil, or Sasha, which might have been on purpose. I don't know much about eidetic memory, but Mike's way of controlling and directing it to keep himself sane, productive and not overwhelmed was interesting.

Overall it was an intriguing conundrum and I would definitely recommend it to Sci-Fi fans especially interesting in parallel universe themes.

I received my copy from Blogging for Books in return for an honest review.

View all my reviews

Saturday, May 07, 2016

My TBR List - ...Bring May Flowers




And the Winner is...


With 50% of the vote!

******************

Welcome to my May 2016 edition of My To Be Read List, hosted by Michelle @ Because Reading. This is a monthly meme where we offer up 3 choices from our TBR pile for our readers to pick from to help us make the super hard decision of "what do I read next?" a little easier and to whittle away at the ever growing TBR Mountain! 

Theme: ...Bring May Flowers, a continuation on last month's saying/theme. This month all my titles have flowers in them.  ;) Feel free to leave me a comment and tell me which you chose and why.

The poll will stay open through Friday 5/13 , and I'll update this post with the winning book on Saturday 5/14, then post a review on the last Saturday of the month, 5/28.

If you think this sounds fun and would like to join (the more the merrier, because we love voting!) please head on over to Because Reading where Michelle lays out the rules for us!

And the choices are...

From Goodreads:

The country may be struggling through the Great Depression, but the good ladies of Darling, Alabama, are determined to keep their chins up and their town beautiful. Their garden club, the Darling Dahlias, has just inherited a new clubhouse and garden, complete with two beautiful cucumber trees in full bloom.

But life in Darling is not all garden parties and rosemary lemonade.

When local blond bombshell Bunny Scott is found in a suspicious car wreck, the Dahlias decide to dig into the town's buried secrets, and club members Lizzy, Ophelia, and Verna soon find leads sprouting up faster than weeds. The town is all abuzz with news of an escaped convict from the prison farm, rumors of trouble at the bank, and tales of a ghost heard digging around the cucumber tree. If anyone can get to the root of these mysteries, it's the Darling Dahlias.
From Goodreads:

(Pink Carnation #11) In October of 1806, the Little Season is in full swing, and Sally Fitzhugh has had enough of the endless parties and balls. With a rampant vampire craze sparked by the novel The Convent of Orsino, it seems no one can speak of anything else. But when Sally hears a rumor that the reclusive Duke of Belliston is an actual vampire, she cannot resist the challenge of proving such nonsense false. At a ball in Belliston Square, she ventures across the gardens and encounters the mysterious Duke.

Lucien, Duke of Belliston, is well versed in the trouble gossip can bring. He’s returned home to dispel the rumors of scandal surrounding his parents’ deaths, which hint at everything from treason to dark sorcery. While he searches for the truth, he welcomes his fearsome reputation—until a woman is found dead in Richmond. Her blood drained from her throat.

Lucien and Sally join forces to stop the so-called vampire from killing again. Someone managed to get away with killing the last Duke of Belliston. But they won’t kill this duke—not if Sally has anything to say about it.
From Goodreads:

October "Toby" Daye, a changeling who is half human and half fae, has been an outsider from birth. After getting burned by both sides of her heritage, Toby has denied the Faerie world, retreating to a "normal" life. Unfortunately for her, the Faerie world has other ideas...

The murder of Countess Evening Winterrose pulls Toby back into the fae world. Unable to resist Evening's dying curse, which binds her to investigate, Toby must resume her former position as knight errant and renew old alliances. As she steps back into fae society, dealing with a cast of characters not entirely good or evil, she realizes that more than her own life will be forfeited if she cannot find Evening's killer.


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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

From Goodreads:

A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan...

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words... And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

Fangirl was my first Rainbow Rowell novel and I'm definitely in for more! What attracted me to this one was the fan fiction aspect, while I never published anything I wrote online, I have many many pages about one of my favorite bands that I wrote in college and beyond, so I totally get it. I could really identify with her reasons for writing, and also her trouble at writing something original. As an adult still interested in writing, I want to move away from fan writing and make something original all my own, and it is hard! Writing within an established world that you've taken so much joy in is comforting, stepping out of that zone and trying to create something new is terrifying, and initially kind of sterile. I believe now that I wrote because I was depressed and stressed, for many reasons, and that was my escape.

Past the writing aspect, I really enjoyed the character development and the relationships.  I loved Cath's roommate and Levi, who is such an unbelievable sweetheart.  I was angry at Cath's sister Wren and just felt so much for Cath's struggles and the hard time her Dad went through. This was a great coming of age story, and now I'll also have to read Carry On, which is Cath's fan fiction.  I think that's awesome that Rainbow Rowell went ahead and wrote that too!

This one gets a definite recommend from me, and I'm looking forward to more!

Friday, April 29, 2016

Bout of Books 16 - May 9th - 15th, 2016


Bout of Books


It's Bout of Books time again, we're up to #16 in 2016! Join us for a week of reading and shenanigans!

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 9th and runs through Sunday, May 15th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 16 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog.
- From the Bout of Books team


Currently Reading:



Finished:



66 pages

already started
80 pages


125 pages

DNF
54 pages

already started
318 pages

76 pages


Page Count:

5/09: 195
5/10: 162
5/11: 191
5/12: 193
5/13:   98
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