Tag Archives: Book reviews

The Unleashing

I have just finished reading The Unleashing which is Book One in the Call of Crows series by Shelly Laurenston. I have not read any of Shelly’s other publications so this was a new author for me too. I got this book through my local library’s Overdrive account.

the unleashing

I was drawn to the book not just because of the cover (hehe), but also because I have always enjoyed Norse mythology and was very intrigued by the idea of the Norse clans in a modern setting.

I actually really enjoyed this book. It was full of very strong female characters, I read a review that said they were not believable… I am guessing that reviewer was male because I have absolutely met women like that 🙂 I am a sucker for fiction that displays women in a strong light. I like it even more when they do not swoon at the first glimpse of abs. The story centers around the journey of Kera and her growth and discoveries about herself and her world. She’s strong, doesn’t take crap and the main love of her life is a pit bull she rescued off the street after it had been dumped for dead after being used in a dog fight ring… who wouldn’t love this girl?! Obviously I am totally biased as soon as a rescue dog became involved. My dream would be to buy a ranch where abused dogs are rehabilitated and given a second chance so I was hooked as soon as I read this part.

I liked the character of Ludvig as well, wasn’t sure I would at first, but he definitely grows on you. In fact all the characters do. It can get a little chaotic trying to keep them straight as there are a lot of characters running about, but it is not too bad.

I didn’t realise that the book was part of a series when I chose to read it which is a bummer because I will have to search for book two as my library does not have it. The end was a definite cliffhanger and I wasn’t expecting the book to end there. Just all of a sudden people were making statements and overtures and I was thinking to myself ‘huh, that’s weird, this is wrap up talk, but there’s so much more plot to work… oh it’s finished…’ the wrap up was a little to abrupt for me, but I think I felt that way too because I wasn’t ready for it to end.

Goodreads says there are two more books in the series. I would definitely like to check them out. I just like giving fair warning to anyone interested in reading that they might be committing to a series hahaha.

What are you all reading?

Advertisements

The Beauty of Darkness

The Beauty of Darkness is book 3 in The Remnant Chronicles saga and is my book number 2 for 52 books in 52 weeks.I talked about the second book in a recent post and was looking forward to reading the final installment. I will be as vague as possible, but some might consider what I will write slight spoilers 🙂

This was a thick book at 679 pages, so if you are someone who cannot commit to long books you might struggle, but I don’t mind them personally and I felt it was worth the read. When the story is good I don’t generally notice how long it is. Plus I was already two books in, I wasn’t about to stop now 🙂

book-the-beauty-of-darkness

Love the cover art for this series!!!

There was this really interesting message through this whole story that I felt repeated over and over again through different storylines and that was that ‘no one is too great to fall’. This is SUCH a true message in day to day life for every person as well as in this book and I think that is why I appreciated it. It also shows how those that fall respond, do they become desperate and cruel or evil, or do they have an inner strength and sense of self that sustains them through the harshest of times. Let’s not mince words, these characters went through some hellish ordeals, particularly the female protagonist Lia. From a waited on princess to someone’s prisoner covered in filth and blood wearing a hessian sack, Lia’s resolve never faulted and her inner strength and leadership qualities just grew. Everything was taken from her and she didn’t crumble. This is a great book for young women to read for this message alone.

The other thing I liked about Lia and some of the other main characters is that they often didn’t make the popular choice. They were not afraid to make the difficult choice that would be immensely harder and possibly end in death because ultimately it was the right thing to do and could save many lives. Too often you read books where people throw the lives of thousands out to dry in the name of love and whilst I understand that being an impossible choice I do get frustrated by the sheer amount of these type of novels – like the Fallen series for example (not that I didn’t enjoy it – you can tell here and here).

Relationships were so interesting in this book. To be honest it didn’t end the way I wished it had. The ending I wanted wouldn’t be the popular version, but to me it was more realistic and I cannot say much more about how I felt about this without spoiling things so I will stop here.

I was a fan of the overall ending and was definitely a fan of many of the messages in the book. I was a particular fan of the women in this book. There is a strength to the women in this book that you cannot help but admire. Seriously SUCH a great read for young women today.


52 books in 52 weeks is back!

Wayyyy back in 2014 as one of my New Year’s goals I decided to undertake a 52 books in 52 weeks challenge (52b52w). Though I am a librarian and surrounded by books everyday I found that I rarely had time to read anymore. As it was my favourite past time I decided to find a way to get it back into my life.

My chill out time used to include a cup of tea a couple of smokes and a good read. Last year on Feb 15 I decided to put the gaspers down for good, in one more month it will be a year since my last cigarette. To be honest giving up smoking after a decade of doing it has made me probably the most proud of myself I have ever been, even more than graduating after 4 years of Uni haha. However, it did mean that I avoided reading. I realised that when I read I would sometimes crave so I stopped, this means I did not read much in 2016. Thankfully I am now over this phase and am ready to get back into reading big time!

So I thought I would start with book 2 and 3 in the Remnant Chronicles by Mary E. Pearson. I have been waiting to read these since I read the first book in the series The Kiss of Deception in November 2015. I really enjoyed the first installment and couldn’t wait to get into the second. However, knowing the cliffhanger I was left at the end of the first I decided to wait until both books came out so I could read them one after the other. LOVE me some binge reading!

So my first read for this year is The Heart of Betrayal book #2 in the Remnant Chronicles series.

heart-of-betrayal

I really enjoyed the first book in this series. It was very well written.

This second installment was written in a different manner and you were able to see the story from more points of view. Whilst I loved the first book and the fact you didn’t know who was who until the final curtain call this book felt like a step forward. It felt more adult. The development of the characters in this book was wonderful, often coming from witnessing or being subjected to brutal incidents.

I loved Lia’s development through this book. She really came into her own and I love her backbone. I really liked how I could see her love of the people and her gift growing, her sense of self was in constant development throughout this book.

This ended almost exactly the way I wanted. I have an idea of where I would like the next installment to go, but I feel it is unlikely the ending I will get.

I have already started on the third book and so far it is exciting too 🙂

Library lovers day in Australia is fast approaching on the 14 February. In support I am currently borrowing all of my books from the library and sharing them on my instagram with the hashtag #librarylove Feel free to do the same 🙂

library-lovers-day


52 Books in 52 Weeks – June

Here it is, the June post 🙂 Like I said for May it has been a pretty busy time of late and remember I also discovered Netflix recently, so I have not been as good a reader as I normally am hahaha. But I am happy to say I am still ahead of schedule for my reading this year… just.

I know I normally do at least 4 books, but with everything else going on at the moment and some of the changes I have been making to my life I haven’t had as much time to get through the books. I also find myself with several books half read at present because I am the type of person that puts myself through that perverse torture. Two of them are bios, one is really heavy and the other couldn’t be more opposite, but both are interesting. I am trying to get through those asap. I am also working on another Book vs. Movie post because people seemed to enjoy my last one.

31. The Lie – C.L. Taylor

the lieInterestingly I came across this book completely by accident, I was teaching one of our casuals how to use BorrowBox and as part of that I logged into my account and we went through how to browse for, preview and borrow and item and this happened to be the item. Afterwards I was kind of intrigued and decided to read it.

It was pretty different and you were reading the story in a dual timeline which for the most part actually wasn’t confusing so kudos to the writer on that. As the cover states there was definitely some ‘dark and creepy’ going on and if a friend every asks me to go to Nepal on a whim I will think twice 🙂

The vast changes in people some might say stretched the imagination a bit, but I actually didn’t feel that way at all, this is possibly because I have personally had a friend go from best friend of 11 years to completely withdrawn from me overnight because her fiance didn’t like me so obviously I find it more believeable. I guess I felt that this story was a good example of how much the influences of others can change someone even when they have a strong sense of self and to be honest when someone does get involved in a cult that is generally what happens, a complete personality overhaul overnight. Quite sad really.

The stand out character for me was Al, I really liked her and thought she was a great character. Emma/Jane was pretty good too and I really liked her boyfriend, he was lovely 🙂 I really enjoyed it so if you are looking for a creepy mystery then check this book out.

 

32. Evil Librarian – Michelle Knudsen

evil librarianMy friend the YA Librarian handed me this book and suggested I give it a read. I later found out she was using me as a guinea pig to decide if she was going to read it haha sneaky, sneaky.

The best friend (Annie) of our main character Cynthia falls in immediate love with the new Librarian Mr. Gabriel and he is pretty handsome so at first Cyn understands her unrequited love, but then she starts to feel that something is quite off about Mr. Gabriel and she suspects that he is in fact a demon.

There is some swearing in it that does seem really random, not because the situation they are in doesn’t call for swearing, but because it doesn’t fit with the rest of the book’s tone. The other thing that bothered me a little was the main character, (I try not to include spoilers so I will be very vague) I wasn’t into her personality swings from meek to ferocious, they just seemed odd at times.

Overall, this is a really funny book and will be amusing for both adults and young adults.

 

 

 


52 Books in 52 Weeks – May (running late)

Wow, this is really, really late and I am so sorry you guys! It’s not that I haven’t been reading, it is just that with so much other stuff going on I haven’t had time to sit down and get my thoughts together about what I read. So here comes May’s list… give me a little while to get June together 🙂

I should warn you that there are SPOILERS in the following because one of the books I did not enjoy and the only way to explain it properly was to “spoil” it.

27. The Adultery Club – Tess Stimson

the-adultery-clubLet me start by saying that it was probably stupid of me to pick this book. To me adultery is a no, no. If you are having serious feelings for someone other than the person you are married to then there is something in your marriage that needs addressing… before you start an affair… not after. But, I am doing this whole, ‘try something new’ thing so I picked it.

Here’s the basic blurb… Husband is a divorce lawyer who is happily married to Mal and loves their little family (young children), he would never do to his wife what his clients do to their other halves. Then a 20-something woman comes to work in his office, apparently she is okay looking, but he turns into a 17 year old hormonal freak whenever he catches a glimpse of her knee (I mean come on you guys, seriously? A knee? I can honestly say I have NEVER been turned on by a persons knee, but whatever, different strokes and all…). The story is told from 3 peoples points of view, Hubby, Wifey and Mistress, pretty much the only likable characters in this for me where the wife Mal and her ex boyfriend. I just wanted to smack Hubby and the mistress around so much!

The mistress at the beginning seems like a normal chick, then she becomes the mistress and it is like she is replaced with this braindead clingy, whingy thing that kind of looks like the character at the beginning of the book. She tells lies, she does some serious manipulating, I mean, she pretty much does everything a person should not be doing in a relationship!

I think the biggest kicker for me is that I don’t think that the husband learned from his mistakes, I found the end very unsatisfying. I won’t say too much in case you guys want to read it and like I said I am really against adultery so I am likely biased, but this was definitely not a book for me.

28. Renegade – Diana Palmer

renegadeYup it’s a harlequin book hahaha. I knew it was a romance novel, but didn’t realise it was harlequin at first. Besides it is a best seller 🙂

I actually enjoyed this book, it was a nice, light reading story. I wasn’t too into the name ‘Tippy’ at first, but she grew on me in general. Since reading this book I have discovered there was actually one before it which probably explains a few things, but it was okay as a stand alone also.

I liked the character of Cash, usually the males in romances are over bearing macho types that have big barriers up that the women slowly overcome, this book wasn’t like that which is a nice change. Although the first time they sleep together he asks for something which is really odd and I am pretty sure no man has ever said that the first time they had sex with someone. It was a nice book and I would probably read the first one.

 

29. The Recipe Box – Sandra Lee

the recipe boxI thought this book was a totally sweet and moving story. I don’t know why, but I always love when people find creating through food therapeutic, maybe because I find cooking and experimenting with food therapeutic… who knows 🙂 I am also a sucker for stories where people visit, move to or really have anything to do with small towns hahaha.

Grace (our main character) is newly divorced Mum who has a daughter who is having some issues, her best friend has been fighting cancer and she has been regularly visiting her at her old hometown. Due to a number of events Grace desides to take her daughter there to finish out school. They move in with her mother with whom she has a strained relationship.

I don’t want to say too much because I did really like this book and apparently it was the author’s first so kudos to you 🙂

What can I say? Drama, cooking, good food, family, love… I’m all in 🙂

30. Immortally Yours (Monster M*A*S*H #1) – Angie Fox
immortally yoursWell I read the second one and kinda liked it so I figured I would go back and read the first one. I liked this one too and the second one in many ways made SO much more sense to me after reading this. But in some ways reading this first book made me not like the second one. For starters the relationship in this one is good, I really like both the characters and how they develop and how their relationship develops. So it kind of felt like the relationship in this book was cheapened by the fact that in the second one she moves on (…or is it backwards? Crap, I don’t know) so quickly.

Generally speaking the story was pretty decent, although I enjoyed the plot in the second book more. Again the sex scenes were pretty RAUNCHY so I guess points for that hahaha.

All round it was an okay book, I don’t know why I am so on the fence about it to be honest.