Thursday, 9 February 2017

Pretty Face by Lucy Parker

                                      Arc Provided by Carina Press through Netgalley
                                                      Release Date: February 20 th

Another winner! Author Lucy Parker definitely knows how to write the perfect story, because I never thought that theatre "stuff" was that interesting, and then I just want to live in these stories. And be friends with these people. Grumpy Richard (from "Act Like It) included.
And as such, I am now going to re-read it, because I don't know when I'll read another good story.

Lily is much more than a pretty face: she's smart, witty, and much more than meets the eye.
Luc on the other hand, likes to live his life preferably free of taxing emotional dramas. He's forty _lol _ he's "old", and he already has enough on his hands with his latest project. He's known for his professional behaviour and he doesn't need someone with twenty six years old ( OMG! lol) mixing up things in his life. When these two meet, they definitely pay attention to each other...
What happens next is a very well built story. I never felt like saying "oh, move on already..". I liked the "view" from the road, and meeting all the other characters? It was not a bore. When the time comes I'll be more than happy to read about them, because this author is most definitely on my auto buy list.
As for now, all I can say, is that this is my first favourite novel of 2017, and I'm no longer easily impressed these days ;)

Author's Official Page

Carina Press Page

Thursday, 2 February 2017

Emily Carroll's Short Comics

Since reading Through the Woods I've been a hardcore fan of Emily Carroll's work.
She is such a talented artist! 
Not only does she have a gift with the written word but she complements it perfectly with her art.

Here are some of her short comics (just click the images and you'll be taken to them):

The Hole The Fox Did Make
Regan is a young girl fascinated by a nearby creek. Her mother says someone drowned there once, so she's forbidden to go. But a mysterious lady in the creek whispers tantalising clues about Regan's father: the Prince of Foxes.

Anu-Anulan & Yir's Daughter
The goddess Anu-Anulan was in love with Yir's Daughter's bright silvery hair.
And she intended to make it all hers.

All Along The Wall
A little girl wants to hear a scary story at a Christmas party.
An older girl tells her a story about a little girl just like her who feared the monsters that scuttled along the walls at night.
But the little girl doesn't find the story scary enough... she wants more.

The Hare's Bride
While shooing a hare from her garden, a young maiden lets herself be convinced to sit on the hare's tail and go with him to his little hut.
The hare tells her to cook while he goes to fetch the wedding guests.
Soon the hare is back and he tells the maiden to open the door because the guest are merry. To open the door because the wedding guests... are hungry.

Emily Carrol's official site (with more free stories!)

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Cold Wind by Nicola Griffith

The thing is, if you know portuguese, you automatically know what the protagonist is. 
And the short gives you very obvious clues as to what the other one is too.
Knowing both their identities together you get the whole story before it barely starts...

Still, the language was beautiful and vivid, and that deserves 3 stars on its own.

You can read it here @ Tor!

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

A Local Habitation (October Daye #2) by Seanan McGuire

The real mystery here is: why do I want to keep reading when this is so bad?
The answer is that McGuire has some real writing talent, even if this book failed spectacularly.

For instance: Toby should not be a detective. She's not just bad at interpreting clues to solve crimes. She's bad at using the simplest common sense in day to day life , every second of every day.
This woman was sent by her liege to check on his niece who hadn't been picking up the phone/calling back. She gets there and the niece says the uncle hadn't been picking up the phone/calling back. 
I'm not even going to put this under a spoiler because that would be insulting you guys, but it takes her until page 280-something out of 377 to figure out that someone was interfering with the phone lines. 
She does stupid shit after stupid shit, ignores the most blatant clues - the killer shows up and any reader with a brain from that very page on goes, "That's the murderer". 

It was soooo frustrating to read a book where not only Toby, but everyone else was tstl. 

The thing is, Toby is tstl, inept, unable to interpret emotions/actions from those close to her, just a plain mess of idiocy. ...but I like her?!
McGuire, wtf?! How do you do this?!
Now I have to read the rest of the series >:(

Also I have a senseless hatred for Connor, I know nothing about him, he seems nice, and I can't stand him. I don't know why :/

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

First arcs of 2017

Staying faithful to my new resolutions of only requesting arcs of authors whose previous works I've loved, here are:


I'm a fan of Kelley Armstrong "Cainsville" series despite still haven't read the fourth volume that was published last year. This one, "Lost Souls", from what I've read takes place before that one, so now I only have to re-read the first three books, and then I get to attack this one!

As for Lucy Parker's "Pretty Face" I pretty much loved her debut novel (right?), "Act Like It", so my hopes are way up high concerning it. The only reason I still haven't devoured is because I simply haven't had the time.

What the 2016 Reading Challenge Taugh Me

Basically that I've become extremely jaded.
According to my Goodreads page it says that I've read one thousand, seven hundred and five books. Total.
Truth is, I've most likely reached the two thousand number: there's hundred of harlequin books (remember those Bianca, Sabrina's and Julia's?) that I've not accounted for... because that would take way TOO much trouble, and I'm not in the mood to add hundred's of info into GR's and Booklikes.
Then there's the ones I read as a young teen, such as Enyd Blyton's, the "Patricia" series and so on and on...
So yes, I've most likely reached the two thousand book mark. With that, my love for paranormal romance has almost disappeared. Books that I once loved, I now eye with extreme disapproval.
My tastes have expanded but that doesn't mean I've become a literary snob. Books that I no longer care about, helped me go through many phases in my life. They provided me with entertainment and a chance to disappear into their plots. I miss that. That feeling of "I can't wait to pick up that book again!" Or of staying awake most of the night to see what would happen.
That feeling has mostly disappeared in the last year, maybe because most of what I read were completely forgetful. Or if not, it was because they were SO BAD, that they're kind of engraved in my brain. Much to my regret.
This year my new resolutions regarding books are:
_ Request even less arcs ( of the twenty three requested last year, most of them were a did not finish and "Oh My God, I HATE MY LIFE!")
_Finish series that I love, mainly the Marcus Didius Falco series (then begin with its spin-off), and the Amelia Peabody.
_ Try to diminish my actual physical book pile;
_Go for reads of favourite authors;
_DNF even more books. Thing is, I know when it's not working, so why force myself? Because instead of giving it a one, I may give it a two star rating?
_Say no to review requests... unless we're talking about big favourites :)

My Gr's challenge was to read hundred books, and were it not for Nalini Singh's short stories I wouldn't have made it. And even so, it was complicated as hell! lol

Thing is, from the hundred stories I read, only these are worth mentioning:

The Star-Touched Queen (The Star-Touched Queen, #1) Spinning Thorns When the Moon Was Ours Act Like It

Once Broken Faith (Toby Daye #10) Not Quite a Husband Finnegan's Field The Girl Who Drank the Moon

               The School for Good and Evil (The School for Good and Evil, #1)The Star of New Mexico (InCryptid #0.14) Lobster Is the Best Medicine: A Collection of Comics About Friendship
                             These Broken Stars (Starbound, #1) This Shattered World (Starbound, #2)

As for the re-reads, there's two all time favourites.
"Valiant", still a five star rating: I just love this plot.  Just do yourself a favour and go read it!
The other was "Once Upon a Rose", a solid four star in the contemporary romance department.

Valiant Once Upon a Rose  

Friday, 30 December 2016

The Secret Ingredient of Wishes by Susan Bishop Crispell

Rachel has spent most of her life trying to ignore her magical "gift", and with good reason: sixteen years ago it ruined her family's life...
For all it's faults, this story has a truly original concept: more the pity for the way it turned out.
The initial dark tone ends up disappearing in an avalanche of badly explained facts, stereotypical characters, and a never ending mention ( and eating) of pies!
I really don't understand how all of that people aren't diabetics. Really!

Even so, it was readable, so, there's that...

The story starts with twenty six old Rachel still living in her family home. And I say still, because that house doesn't harbour happy memories... When a wish suddenly appears ( in front of her eyes, written in a piece of paper like they used to) after a long hiatus of them not bothering her, Rachel freaks out and decides to disappear town, before something bad happens to her friends. You see, Rachel doesn't have a good relationship with her gift ever since a catastrophe happened.
SPOILER: At ten years old she wished her young brother would get lost. After that, Michael disappears never to be remembered by his parents. Only Rachel remembers him.
Dark right? Well it even gets darker!
But then Rachel arrives to this little town, Nowhere, capital of the "Lost and Found".
I don't know what I was expecting, maybe a town full of odd ones?
But with the exception of Catch, a seventy five old woman who makes magical pies, with which she binds people's secrets, the rest of the folks were basically normal. Which was kind of disappointing.

I was expecting more out of Catch's and Rachel's relationship. Although it ends up developing itself in a very aloof and cranky way, it always felt too superficial. And the same thing happened with the rest of the story and it's characters.
I wanted more out of Catch's background. When did she start making the pies? SPOILER When did she start getting sick? Who was that stupid ex-husband of hers?
Instead, the author decided to present her as just this cranky old lady constantly making pies: normal pies and magical pies.
Badly explained fact #23... why would people eat her pies if they suspect that someone may be trying to make them forget something??
Look, I don't know about you, but I would probably swore pies off for LIFE.

Then there's Ashe, our broken hearted hero...
Handsome, attractive, always ready to help... and with a wife of whom he still hasn't divorced. Can you say, awkward much?
The ex wife is presented as a cheater, although I really don't understand how Ashe found out about it. Her name is Lola ( -__-) and we really don't understand why she cheated on Ashe SPOILER (WITH THE GUY'S FATHER FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!... well, there's mentions of great charm involved. Another magical ability??
Unfortunately that _ and that person's motives _ were never developed. Maybe because she didn't want to enter the soap opera domain. *cough* Too late I'm afraid...
Like I said there's a lot of mentions of people eating pie.
So, I guess there wasn't space or time to develop any thing else.
As for the final part, it went from magical realism to Disney land. Which was awkward.
Another plot that was extremely important, ends up not being resolved, and the ending was really wish washy.
Basically, great concept, but the execution could've been (way) better.
Also as a fan of Sarah Addison Allen I am not impressed...

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