February 2018 — A Wrap Up

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Department 19: The Rising by Will Hill

Several things about this book annoyed the heck outta me, including:

I have begun to detest Jamie who is a Mary Sue if there ever was one!

Talbot stared at Jamie, admiration on his face. “Bravo”, he said. “There are men and women a lot older than you who fail to understand that. You’re absolutely right…”

He is the youngest this and the smartest that while also being the best at everything! Oh, and he actually left his female friends behind because he “couldn’t bear if anything happened to you”. One of them is a vampire with superstrength and other powers. Both of them are members of a covert organization that keeps the supes under check. They are at least as old as Jamie is.

The worst part: they let him They understood he was just worried about them. Needlessly worried but Jamie’s just so sweet, y’know? Ugh!

There are at least two instances of a character who looked as if about to say something but “then the door rolled shut with a loud thunk.

Every development was repeated endlessly. If one character found out about it, they’d tell the others and we’d be there for every conversation!

We are almost 65% into the story and a new character who is supposed to be dead shows up. And I am not even talking about the other character who also died in the first book and showed up in this one alive. At least, that guy had the decency to arrive right from the start!

We also spend a lot of time learning about people who have nothing to add to the story. Seemed like filler so the book would swell up to 560+ pages.

So yeah, bad experience! Read my review of the first book here.

 

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The Light Fantastic by Terry Pratchett

During my second visit to Discworld, I discovered the following to be true:

Luggage is my favorite character:

“The Luggage said nothing, but louder this time.” 

And then there is all the Pratchett-ness to love and laugh at:

“It looked like the sort of book described in library catalogues as ‘slightly foxed’, although it would be more honest to admit that it looked as though it had been badgered, wolved and possibly beared as well.” 

 

 

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A big part of that is because he can poke fun at almost anything. Have a look at his disregard for the Asgardian deities:

In fact the Gods were as puzzled by all this as the wizards were, but they were powerless to do anything and in any case were engaged in an eons-old battle with the Ice Giants, who had refused to return the lawnmower.

Also, I finally figured out that I am Twoflower. Evidence:

It’s not that he doesn’t appreciate beauty, he just appreciates it in his own way. I mean, if a poet sees a daffodil he stares at it and writes a long poem about it, but Twoflower wanders off to find a book on botany.

That Rincewind will stay true to his character. Even when he has a chance to be less cowardly, he does the expected…or the unexpected!

A fun book and quickly finished.

 

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The Dinosaur Knights by Victor Milán

One of the complaints that I had after reading the first book:

Insufficient dino-action. Yeah, that complaint wasn’t remotely true for this one. Epic dino-battles shook the world like literally!

A quote that stayed with me:

Through the trees on the far heights emerged a colossal silvery-grey shape. Even the Companions gaped: it was a Tirán Rey, a bull Tyrannosaurus rex, most feared of all Aphrodite Terra’s dinosaurs. Even at this range Jaume could see the monster dwarfed Falk’s albino adolescent Snowflake.
“Beautiful,” murmured Rupp. “He must weigh seven tonnes!”
Jaume found a smile inside himself. “You shame us, my friend, finding Beauty where even we find only terror.”

The other complaints, such as the princess being a pain in the butt, remained as they were. In fact, she was even more of a pain in this one. She is improving but her getting her friends killed in every scene can get tiresome!

We finally get to see the Grey Angels in action and it is pretty much horrifying what they can do. I loved every bit of it!

I wanted to rush in to read the next book in the series immediately but found out that the author recently passed away.  Sad sad news but it made me want to save the last book to read later. Because there will be no more Game of Thrones and Jurassic Park hybrids for us!

 

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Something Rotten by Jasper Fforde

Thursday Next steals people’s hearts and I am no exception. She gets into all sorts of literary trouble but handles it in a no-nonsense way. She is into solving problems and not whining. Next also isn’t afraid to ask for help or doesn’t judge people by their looks, species, gender, or whether they are real or not. I like her; it is likely that you will too!

Plus, the humor in this series is decidely Douglas Adams-ish! Next named her son Friday Next. Has a pet dodo whose son is a hooligan and doesn’t have the decency to go Plock. He goes Plick just to be contrary! This book also had cameos by the Cheshire Cat, Hamlet, and many other literary darlings.

 

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Eighth Grave After Dark by Darynda Jones

I was reading reviews for this book on GR and people seem to think it was dull, cheesy, and repetitive. I don’t get how it can take them 8 books to realize that! Since I will be reading it anyway, why bitch?

 

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Endurance by Jay Lake

I wonder how I ever got along with the protag from this series — well enough to have completed the first book! She is annoying, reckless, rude, manipulative, and as if that wasn’t enough, she also thinks she is better than everybody else! Should I explain it all away by saying that is how teenagers are? I don’t think I should!

There were other issues that made this a difficult read, such as the copious amount of foreshadowing. If only she had known…if only she had done that…and so on! Aptly placed and lightly done foreshadowing is always welcome but this book didn’t have it.

The only part that made me laugh:

though five centuries past this had been the very pinnacle of architectural taste in Copper Downs.
A good education never went to waste. If I did die here, at least I would have the comfort of knowing I’d passed on amid high style.

The only part that stayed with me:

I wondered how it had been for the miners, back in the morning of the world. Had they broken open the crust of the world only to find a population of haunts and legends already awaiting them? Or had they brought their fears with them on first creating the Below?

Some readers might like the endless descriptions of everything that was around the protag at any given time but I didn’t!

So, there. If I do read the next one in the series, I wouldn’t be reviewing it.

 

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Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs

An okayish installment since I wasn’t too worried about anything bad happening. After the horror stories we were told about Underhill, a visit to the place didn’t have that intensity or scariness.

Then there is the Walking Stick. I think the author got that it was turning into a deus ex machina and got rid of it — even if it took her the whole book to do that!

And, of course, Mercy didn’t shift. Not even once.

The good things about this one:

No Stefan. I have no idea why he was even introduced in the series

2. Adam finally realized what his pack had been doing to Mercy since like forever. I mean what he did next was the worst thing he could have done but at least, he opened his eyes.

3. A Doctor WHO reference!

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4. The scary-ass little not-really-human but not-fae-either kid that the pack had to provide shelter to! He broke my heart by being so broken.

I hope the next installment is more exciting!

 

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Forever Peace by Joe Haldeman

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The book refers to a backstory that I read and reviewed before. You will find the review here.

 

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The Girl in the Clockwork Collar by Kady Cross

Something about this series makes me think not-YA. It could be that the main characters are struggling with darkness and the struggle is real. Whatever it is, while the story failed to wow me — and I could see the major reveal coming from a mile away —, I still liked the book.

So, this is what I did in February. What have you been doing?

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