Tag Archives: author

The Mirror Empire – Book Review

Read April 2015

3 out of 5 stars

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Yeah, that’s me. Trying to think of how the hell to write this review.

I mean one of my notes says, “Thumb in butt.” Not mine mind you, but one character checking the anal virginity of another.
Other notes say things like, “Cannibals!” and “dog hair clothes.”

All I can really boil it down to is a list of the good things, the things that made this book so promising and then why it was ultimately flat.

The Good/Interesting Aspects:
– Bear and dog mounts
– Matriarchal/polyamorous society
– Sentient carnivore plants
– Magic based upon the satellite (star) in orbit
– Blood witches
– Tears in the world in which you may travel to another parallel world
– Causing or attempting to stop genocide depending on which playing field you currently stand

The reason this book fell flat? Severe lack of character development. I could hardly connect with any of the characters. The closest I came was some what enjoying Ahkio and that was because he did show slight character development. However, it didn’t matter to me at any point who lived and who died.

The world building was great and had a lot more potential but I felt as though there was more world building that hadn’t been fleshed out by the author and it left it lacking at points. Many times I could not tell which planet we were supposed to be on. Maybe it was my mind wandering but I sometimes felt as if I had missed something important and I would read back a little bit and find nothing amiss.

This wasn’t a book that I was biting at the bit to pick up and keep reading. In fact, I sat it down often and for long periods of time and read something a little more interesting in between. That being said, it was still a good book and I would continue with the second in hopes that the author fixed a few things.

House Rules – Book Review

Chicagoland Vampires #7

3 out of 5 stars

This series started out so strong but then the author started using the same formula for every book in the series. Trouble brews in Chicago, Merit and Ethan are thrown in the middle of it, will their relationship survive or won’t it? They solve mystery and work out their relationship.

No matter what happens, even if the action is good, the mystery thrilling, just seeing a repeat of the same formula every time gets under my skin. I’m so tired of the relationship drama that I could spit. (Not on the book, I’m not the Devil.) At this point, I wish Merit would dump Ethan and explore options with Jonah, as he is a much more enjoyable male character.

I’ve read the synopsis for the next book and I can’t say that it thrills me any. Quite honestly, it looks to be a repeat of another, “Oh no! Chicago is in trouble! Can Merit and Ethan save the day?! Will their relationship survive the test?!”

*Barfs*

Maybe one day, if I’m bored and for some unforeseen reason, curious, I’ll pick up the series again and see how it goes. *Grumps off into the horizon.*

The Killing Moon – Book Review

Read in July 2015

3.5 out of 5 stars

The world building in this story was intricate and cleverly imagined. The characters were fun and inventive. But for ¾ of the book I was highly disappointed in the plot line. It seemed to me to be your usual fantasy trend of a power hungry villain starting a war between nations and after all the world building and character crafting, it just felt limp compared to the rest of the tale.

However, the last 100 pages blew me away. It brought pin pricks to my eyes forcing them to tear just a little against my will. The after effect of finishing the book left me with some interesting revelations, that I can only explain after telling you a little more about this tale.

Ehiru and Nijiri are what are called Gatherers. A revered sect of followers who bring peace and death to the sick and dying or people who’s soul has been deemed corrupt. In their city, Gujaareh, peace is law. To disrupt that peace is to be gathered, having your soul released to the dream goddess of which they worship. Death is not something to be feared. It is only eternal peace with Hananja (the goddess).

The Prince who rules the city is the avatar of Hananja. He brings her peace to the land of the living. When he dies, he becomes her King in the dream world.

So what is one to do when the Prince wants to bring war to his people?

Preventing war and attempting to Gather a Prince’s soul is no easy task. Especially for Ehiru, who is ready to forever fade into the dream world and find everlasting peace.

Instead, he rides to war with Nijiri by his side. The only person that can keep him from going mad from the lack of dreamblood. (Dreamblood is what the Gatherer takes when releasing a soul.) They must ride into a foreign land where Gatherers are feared and the people tell their children horror stories of these “killers”.

I have a restless soul by nature. Most of the time, I don’t notice just how restless until an author comes along and through their characters calms that restlessness. The ¾ of the book that I did not enjoy, I now realize was my resistance to being enchanted. The last ¼ I was enraptured with tears stinging my eyes. My restless soul had been tamed for a short while and with that came a certain peace and understanding of just how fantastic of characters Ehiru and Nijiri were. Throughout all conflicts, they remained with an inner peace that was infectious.

Jemisin is a crafter of a great calibur.

 

Krampus: The Yule Lord – Book Review

(Read December 2015)

4 out of 5 stars

“I, Krampus, Lord of Yule, son of Hel, bloodline of the great Loki, swear to cut your lying tongue from your mouth, your thieving hands from your wrists and your jolly head from your neck.”

Do you really need to know anymore to decide that yes, you are going to read this?

Oh you do?

Well aren’t you a greedy little shit? Keep this up. Krampus has special plans for you.

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Wake of Vultures – Book Review

5 out of 5 stars

Nettie Lonesome is half-Injun, half-black and 100% alone in this world. Abandoned as an infant for unknown reasons, and raised by low class filthy white people who “run” a dilapidated ranch, Nettie has been alone for her entire life save for a one-eyed mule. She’s made to make Pap and Mam’s breakfast every day and do all the chores to keep the farm running. Her only friend an old cowpoke at the ranch next door who took pity on her and began teaching her how to break broncs. Now, she breaks the mangy nags that Pap brings home and sells for a little bit of money. Since she turned twelve and Pap saw her naked in the river washing, and the look in his eye was unsavory, she’s been dressing as a boy ever since.

One night, Nettie is attacked by a strange man in their yard, another man looking at her in an unsavory fashion. Except he doesn’t try to hide it. There’s something wrong with him, besides the obvious, his eyes are an unnatural color and he has fangs. Now Nettie Lonesome is no coward, so she sticks a sickle in his eye. He doesn’t die. Not until she stabs a stick into his heart. From then on, she sees things that have no right to be real.

Shortly thereafter, the ranch boss next door witnesses her skill at breaking broncs and hires her on. He doesn’t know she’s a girl but that’s okay, she’s more comfortable as a boy anyway. She’ll get to make money, have a roof over her head, food in the her belly, no longer be beat and do what she loves, working with horses. It’s everything she’s ever wanted from life, until a dying Indian woman curses her.

Now she’s being forced to hunt the Cannibal Owl by the Indian woman’s ghost and if she doesn’t she’ll die. The Cannibal Owl steals all the children of Indian tribes. Attacks in the night silently, the parents awake to find their children forever missing. No one knows what it looks like or what it does with the children. Nettie is about to embark on a journey of the paranormal to protect the new life she has built for herself and maybe she’ll learn more about who she is and where she comes from along the way.

Have you been looking for a book that just blasts the shit out of tropes and stereotypes and gives you an authentic glimpse into a person? That exposes the many ways that humans are not black and white? That there are shades of gray to everything and that that is perfectly okay? Here you fucking go. I have not read a more accepting book in a very long time. It made me feel all warm and glowing on the inside. It tickled my pizzle.

The Martian – Book Review

4 out of 5 stars

“My asshole is doing as much to keep me alive as my brain.”

Mark Watney has just been accidentally abandoned by his crew on Mars. The next mission to Mars won’t happen for another four years. It’s either find a clever way to survive until then or give up.

If that were me, I would have just shit my spacesuit.

But I’m not an astronaut, botanist or on my way to Mars for any reason, so for now spacesuits are safe from me.

At first, I was worried that I would get bored with the style of this book. It begins as a journal of Watney realizing he’s been left behind and trying to find a way to survive. A diary style novel is hit or miss with me. That protagonist better be damn entertaining if I’m going to read their every thought. Thankfully, Watney is sarcastic and humorous. Had the author written him any other way, I don’t think I would have kept on. It then shuttles back to Earth and gives us the point of view of NASA scientists doing everything they can to bring an abandoned astronaut home. And for a little extra space love, it also tunes you into Watney’s crew mates, who think they’ve left a team member dead on Mars.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the best science fiction has actual science in it. This has butt-tons. Metric butt-tons of science. So not only was this an enjoyable escape to read, I also learned more about rocket science and potatoes than I ever thought I would know.

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Retribution Falls – Book Review

4 out of 5 stars

I have a GR friend who is always suggesting new books to me, we shall call him, Sir Lancer. I have this wonderful habit of adding said books to my TBR pile, or even purchasing them outright based on his suggestion. This wonderful habit evolves into myself not reading them for quite sometime, despite the recommendation. So this past week, I decided that it was time to break my own habits and crack open a Sir Lancer novel!

I am most pleased with that decision.

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If you find these things fun: steampunk, swords, guns, cannons, smuggling, piracy, rebellion, daemonism, golems, people with mechanical body parts, airships, sky battles, and alcohol just to name a few things; then you should quit reading this and sign yourself up for adventure immediately!

The crew of the Ketty Jay are a mixed bag of nuts. All hiding from their pasts, all keeping their secrets to themselves, all while attempting to function as a decent crew.
But when they take a job that ends in unintended massacre, set up by an unknown enemy, they must come together quickly to clear their names for neither side in this brewing war believes them.

For most of the book, I enjoyed the other characters more than the MC. However, towards the end even the Cap’n was growing on me. The entire book was entertaining, spunky and at parts hilarious. If you happen to be stuck in a book rut, like I was when I picked this up, it will easily turn the tide for you.

Mighty fine suggestion Sir Lancer.