Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Night Broken - Book Review

Night Broken (Mercy Thompson #8)
by Patricia Briggs

What is it about:
An unexpected phone call heralds a new challenge for Mercy. Her mate Adam’s ex-wife is in trouble, on the run from her new boyfriend. Adam isn’t the kind of man to turn away a person in need—and Mercy knows it. But with Christy holed up in Adam’s house, Mercy can’t shake the feeling that something about the situation isn’t right.

Soon, her suspicions are confirmed when she learns that Christy has the farthest thing from good intentions. She wants Adam back and she’s willing to do whatever it takes to make it happen, including turning Adam’s pack against Mercy.

Mercy isn’t about to step down without a fight, but there’s a more dangerous threat circling. Christy’s ex is more than a bad man—in fact, he may not be human at all. As the bodies start piling up, Mercy must put her personal troubles aside to face a creature with the power to tear her whole world apart.

What did I think of it:
I will confess: it took me forever to pick up this book because of the mention of the ex of Adam showing up. If there's one thing that gets me upset about a book, it's relationship drama with an established couple. I didn't even dare get the UK paperback once it released last year.

But I do love this series, so when the US paperback released I finally got myself together enough to give it a try. (Because if you're going to be annoyed by a book, it better have a cool cover!)

And the drama around Christy indeed made my blood pressure spike!

I wanted to slap Christy, I wanted to kick sense into Adam, and I wanted to scream at lots of people all around.

But luckily there was more to this story than just Christy and the stupid way everyone acts about her.

There's a nasty critter out there, and Mercy has got to stop him, all while trying to a stay alive, deal with faeries, and refrain from punching Christy nose in (or was that just me?).

A new, interesting character gets introduced, a recurring character got more screen time and got more interesting, and Mercy kicks some serious ass. All in all enough to make sure I enjoyed this book despite the drama of the ex.

This book won't become my favorite of the series, but it is a cool addition to it, and I will most certainly get my trotters on upcoming books in this series.

Why should you read it:
It's a cool Urban Fantasy read.

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Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Teaser Tuesdays - How to Destroy the New Girl's Killer Robot Army

I fidget through class, barely paying attention to Mrs. Schumaker droning on about wagon trains and buffalo. I get it. Life on the prairie was tough. Churning your own butter? Yay for the Industrial Revolution.

(page 22, How to Destroy the New Girl's Killer Robot Army by Mick Bogerman)

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, 2 March 2015

How to Rid Your Swimming Pool of a Bloodthirsty Mermaid - Book Review

How to Rid Your Swimming Pool of a Bloodthirsty Mermaid (Slug Pie Story #2)
by Mick Bogerman

What is it about:
All Mick Bogerman wanted to do was teach his little brother how to swim in the coolest swimming pool in town. He didn’t ask to take care of a bunch of Sea-Monkeys while he was there. He certainly didn’t mean to morph one of them into a mermaid by feeding it genetically enhanced super food. No one is more surprised than Mick when the creature starts luring unsuspecting adults into the deep end of the pool. Adults who don’t resurface.

Join Mick as he battles a powerful adversary: a bloodthirsty mermaid who hypnotizes with a golden gaze, shatters glass with a piercing shriek, and reveals her true menacing self by the light of a full moon.

What did I think of it:
I loved the first book in this series, so I was very happy that the publisher also sent me the next two books for review.

And this book is just as much fun as the first!

Mick wants to teach his brother to swim, but soon they find themselves eye to eye with a mermaid. And this isn't a nice mermaid: it's a monstrous, hungry mermaid, looking for a snack. And she doesn't care if that snack is meant to be a snack or not! Humans seem to be part of her dietary needs.

Just as in the previous book there is lots of cool action, and gruesome moments. Mick and his brother Finley have to be quick on their feet, brave and resourceful to survive, and to get rid of the bloodthirsty mermaid.

This book is for children between the age of 8 and 12, so it never got too scary for me, but the gore was yet again plenty. I very much enjoyed reading this book, and if it had been Dutch, I would immediately get it as a present for my nephews, who most certainly would enjoy it as well.

I like how Mick has the help of his brother this time. They make a great team, and their interaction with each other, and with their friend PJ was fun to read.

The one trouble with a fun book like this, is that I finished it way too quickly. You can bet the books in this series will be reread when I'm in the mood for a fast, and adventure-packed read.

Why should you read it:
It's cool, action-packed, and has a bloodthirsty mermaid!

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Saturday, 28 February 2015

TBR Orphans Challenge - February Update

I read a total of 4 orphaned books this month!

Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire has been in my TBR pile since December 2013
Love Minus Eighty by Will McIntosh beats that with a month, having been there since November 2013
Binding the Shadows by Jenn Bennett is a recent orphan. It's only been in my TBR pile since September 2014
I'm not even sure how long I've had The Better Part of Darkness by Kelly Gay. I know I got it from a friend, but can't remember how long ago.

I think I did a good job this month in giving my orphaned books some attention.
How about you?
Did you succeed in your challenges?

Friday, 27 February 2015

City of Heavenly Fire - Book Review

City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments #6)
by Cassandra Clare

What is it about:
In this dazzling and long-awaited conclusion to the acclaimed Mortal Instruments series, Clary and her friends fight the greatest evil they have ever faced: Clary's own brother.

Sebastian Morgenstern is on the move, systematically turning Shadowhunter against Shadowhunter. Bearing the Infernal Cup, he transforms Shadowhunters into creatures out of nightmare, tearing apart families and lovers as the ranks of his Endarkened army swell.

The embattled Shadowhunters withdraw to Idris - but not even the famed demon towers of Alicante can keep Sebastian at bay. And with the Nephilim trapped in Idris, who will guard the world against demons?

When one of the greatest betrayals the Nephilim have ever known is revealed, Clary, Jace, Isabelle, Simon, and Alec must flee - even if their journey takes them deep into the demon realms, where no Shadowhunter has set foot before, and from which no human being has ever returned...

Love will be sacrificed and lives lost in the terrible battle for the fate of the word in the thrilling final installment of the classic urban fantasy series The Mortal Instruments!

What did I think of it:
A satisfying conclusion to a very entertaining series.

I must say Clare knows how to sell books: in this last book she is already setting up her next series. The lead characters of that series are introduced, there's some heavy hinting towards the upcoming love drama in that series, and although this series has a satisfying conclusion, it does leave lots of room for more (nasty) things to come in the world of the Shadowhunters.

Not that this annoyed me. Clare also knows just how to mix those things into the story without the reader feeling cheated. I very much enjoyed the story and the action.

This time around the things that happened were back to being easy to guess. The only thing I didn't see coming is that Clare killed of a character she could have had lots more fun with if she had used that character in the right way.

Did I mind? Not one bit. These books are too entertaining to complain about predictability. I sat back and enjoyed the ride.

I was glad I read The Bane Chronicles before picking up this book, because just as there were lots of mentions of characters and events from the prequel series (even some spoilers for people who haven't read the prequel series yet), there were also several mentions of events from The Bane Chronicles. It gave just a bit more insight having read those stories, although you won't miss out if you haven't read them.

All in all I had a great time reading this series, and I will most certainly reread it. I will also keep an eye out for more books by Clare, because they might be predictable at times, they're also lots of fun.

Why should you read it:
It's a very entertaining Paranormal YA read.

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Thursday, 26 February 2015

On McPig's Wishlist - Cruel Beauty

A Beauty and the Beast retelling I'd love to give a try.

Cruel Beauty
by Rosamund Hodge

Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.

Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.

With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she's ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.

But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle-a shifting maze of magical rooms-enthralls her.

As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex's secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.

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Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Suspicion - Book Review

by Alexandra Monir

What is it about:
“There’s something hidden in the maze.”

Seventeen-year-old Imogen Rockford has never forgotten the last words her father said to her, before the blazing fire that consumed him, her mother, and the gardens of her family’s English country manor.

For seven years, images of her parents’ death have haunted Imogen’s dreams. In an effort to escape the past, she leaves Rockford Manor and moves to New York City with her new guardians. But some attachments prove impossible to shake—including her love for her handsome neighbor Sebastian Stanhope.

Then a life-altering letter arrives that forces Imogen to return to the manor in England, where she quickly learns that dark secrets lurk behind Rockford’s aristocratic exterior. At their center is Imogen herself—and Sebastian, the boy she never stopped loving.

What did I think of it:
I read that this book is inspired by Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca so I had to give it a try.

And this is a really cool read.

It does indeed have the same kind of mood and atmosphere as Rebecca, and there are some elements from Rebecca in this book, but luckily Monir decided not to stay too close to the story that inspired her, but to create a story of her own.

I really liked Imogen and could understand her reactions to everything that happens. Her attraction to Sebastian was less clear at first, but Sebastian made up for it later.

The paranormal element in this story felt a bit unnecessary in my opinion. It didn't really add to the story and could easily have been left out, but then again, it didn't annoy me either.

The story is set in present day, but felt dated at times. I know British nobility is still celebrated and present in the UK, but the peerage when it came to the servants felt a bit unrealistic. But I might be mistaken, and maybe things really are still that old fashioned among the British nobility.

That aside: I very much enjoyed this story for its mood, its suspense, and the characters. I will check out what else Monir has written.

Why should you read it:
It's an enjoyable YA read with a Gothic feel to it.

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