It has been some time, but here is my latest review ^_^ Oh my this series is really starting to get to me, this book is easily the best so far in the series :)
Book lover and blogger at mybookfile.wordpress.com. Sometimes I write something of my own. I specifically love fantasy and historical fiction but I read other genres at well, though less often... and I'm a sucker for chicklit once in a while ^_^
I'm an English student so I also tend to read some required literature or philology related.
You can find me on wordpress, twitter @MybookfileBlog and on facebook.com/mybookfile.
It has been some time, but here is my latest review ^_^ Oh my this series is really starting to get to me, this book is easily the best so far in the series :)
I received a free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
“It was a relentless and self-destructive ritual, yet Minerva lived for hope. One day the saviour would return to the lands and rid them of the demon plague. She just needed to find a way. Maybe tonight.” -first few lines of the prologue.
I started this book earlier this month, after having something of a reading slump, and I must say that this didn’t really make me want to come out of it.
Maybe it was because of my state of being, the not really wanting to read anything state, but this book didn’t quite do it for me. Be warned, this may be more of a rant than I would’ve liked.
Lets start at the beginning.
To start on a positive note: the prologue was actually quite interesting. It introduced a character, there was action, there was blood, magic and a lot of drama. As a reader, it gave me an insight as to what/who the demons were that the blurb was talking about. I probably should have seen it coming, but the character who was introduced in the prologue (being Minerva) was actually not at all that present in the rest of the book (she only appeared again later on, for a short time).
However, aside from being interesting, the prologue already introduced one of the issues that I have with this book. You see, the title and the cover promise a book that appears to be some sort of alternate history of the Christian story of creation, it wasn’t. It was filled with Roman terms and names (hint: Minerva), and instead of bringing some sort of devil being as an antagonist, there was more something of a godlike figure.
After the prologue, Vita Dulcas is introduced (and her little brother… who is not at all that important, but was just there because… drama?). She now lives at the palace that looks something like this?:
(picture found on Flickr on the account of Fink Angel, this is Fishbourne Roman Palace)
Is it just me? Or did the whole Roman-like setting just feel a little odd? I mean, when I think of a palace in such a desertlike place, surrounded by lava rivers with demons crawling through the city, it usually brings to mind a more non-Roman setting.
Anyhow, she lives at the palace because of a favour that the emperor owed Vita’s father (the one who raised her after she was found in the cave full of snakes).
From the moment that Vita is introduced, a whole lot of other characters are brought to light (not all as important of course, nor do they all seem to really have a purpose next to causing drama in the book, and causing me to be confused). Suddenly the normal time line is interrupted by a past time line, this happens more as the story unfolds.
Most of the descriptions concerning the land, certain events or people were well done, clear and created a picture in my mind. Since I like detail, that is definitely a plus. However, even though I do like detail and descriptions and stuff, there has to be a purpose and sometimes that purpose was missing. I mean that I like to know how the people lived in Mendacia and that it was probably under not the most comfortable circumstances, but make it have a purpose and don’t just add it in the story without any use. It’s like saying something at random like; I like apples, during a discussion that is about airplanes.
The writing, and style, was not entirely to my liking. Sometimes it was all over the place, first talking about one person and than another, adding useless information and seeming to lack structure, there was no real direction in which the story was headed. Not only were there different time-lines, there were also memories that complicated the reading. At times, it wasn’t clear if it was happening now, or in a memory/other time line. There was also a lot of hopping around between point of views, that was really annoying to me in the end.
Under this paragraph in my review I also want to talk about the character development or lack thereof, because in this case that is part of the writing rather than a separate point.
I’ll give one example that made me quite unhappy while reading this (read: throwing hands in the air with a lot of cursing). I will not go through this in a lot of detail, but here it is:
Vita has a certain opinion of a certain someone, she has had that opinion for quite some time now and actually tries to hate that person. Again, this has been her opinion for I guess years. Then, suddenly, someone mentions to her that she has been quite a insufferable broad, and she completely changes her mind?! Like: Oh, now that you mention it, you’re right! I should be more nice to that person!
This just didn’t work for me.
There wasn’t any real character development in this story. Yes, some characters figured out some things about themselves, but in the end there was no change/grow or anything like that. They all just went down the same road until the end, except for the sudden change Vita went through… which was probably needed to keep the story interesting.
For me, this book is a typical example of a book that has so much potential, but failed to deliver. It would have been so much better if the book had been what the title promised, or if the story had actually been well worked out.
There were some interesting parts, an here and there there was a bit of humour, but it wasn’t enough for me to truly enjoy this book. I give this book 1.5 stars.
So, a couple of weeks ago I had the chance to visit London for a couple of days. I had a great time there, have seen some really nice things, visited some museums and laughed at my sunburned boyfriend.
For a full post about my experiences in London, click the link ^_^
I received a free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
'Lackland. Its shame had never left him, with the crumbs of territory that Henry had granted him only whetting his appetite for power and never close to sating it. But from today, he'd be Lackland no more. - Chapter one.
It took me some time, but I finally finished this book today! Not that it was a bad book, not at all, I was just very distracted (social life.. ugh... it's a pain). So, here goes, what do I think of this book?
First of all, let's talk a bit about the book (as part of a series) and the setting.
The book itself is actually part three in a series, and (smart as I am) I haven't read the first two books. This wasn't an issue at all really, there was enough information in the book to make it enjoyable. There wasn't a lot of information missing, so no irritating knowledge gaps or anything like that.
The setting was right up my alley. Set in 12th century England/Ireland, it's a period that is somewhat familiar to me. However, this book was really aimed at specific event and a specific place that I wasn't really familiar with, so that was both a curse and a blessing. I did like how the setting was in Ireland most of the time instead of England, a nice change. Through multiple narrators, I got a description of the 'Irish' at the time as 1: being savages 2: being actually quite awesome people. The story also gave an insight in the culture and land itself, though not that much. There was enough detail to read this book comfortably without having read the first two books of the series. I think that a huge advantage for this book was the setting itself. There wasn't really that much detail needed to describe the landscape or certain scenes, mostly because nowadays it's a familiar (maybe even popular) setting/time period. Readers often know what they can expect when they read in the blurb that it's about the middle ages.
On to the narrators and characters we go!
Let's keep it relatively simple and say that there were three main narrators/characters.
2. Palmer: Sir Benedict Palmer, right hand man of King Henry II of England, husband of Theodosia (the 3rd narrator). He is an honourable knight, a lovely fellow who takes care of others and is a bit overly protective on some occasions. Palmer doesn't go without a fight and he is very creative, and even though he's an older fellow, he keeps up with all the young soldiers/peasants out there.
Because of the many narrators, relatively speaking, the telling can be messy at times. Storylines can suddenly be cut off and then another one will continue. Within one chapter there can be over two changes in narrators and that can be irritating/messy. It's not really confusing, because the parts by the different narrators are separated quite clearly, so that's a plus. One thing about most characters in this story: there was no real character development. There was a certain change of heart at times (not all of a sudden but with a reason), but that wasn't really development to me. Throughout this book, most characters simply stayed the same. Even though there wasn't any real development, I think I liked John the most as a character. He was a great creation and it was awesome to get an insight in the person of John Lackland. Underestimated nine out of ten, John was able to surprise everyone multiple times, and even though he's a dick... He did get away with it all in the end, didn't he?
The writing style itself is alright. It took me some time to get into the story, but once I did there was enough suspense, tension, action and sometimes even a bit of humour. The minor characters were often the ones who created the space for a bit of humour in some scenes.
My favourite part must have been *drums* the ending. Ah... the end... I'm not going to spoil it! I'm just saying that it seemed like there was going to be a happy ever after, but there wasn't one really. Great twist in my opinion. You have to read it for yourself in order to get it :')
The setting was great, love the time period and the place. The characters were good, no real development but that wasn't an issue. Everything else was alright. I wasn't blown away, but it was a good read. One thing that I specifically liked was the insight in the person of John Lackland, he was an awesome character, created very well. I probably would have liked it more had I read the first two parts of the series, that's my loss. I give this book three stars, since I did like it :)
I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review
"Englishmen flooded the castle and I was up to my wrists in the blood of one of them, trying to push his insides back through the eight inch gash in his stomach."
I'm a great fan of the middle ages, and so when I saw this book and got the opportunity to read it, I was unable to let this go.
As some of you might know, I really like a good first sentence of the prologue or first chapter. In my opinion it sets the bar for the rest of the book and hold a promise of being either great, or horrible. This first line gave me some sort of promise, but I'm not sure if it was made true in the end.
Most important here is to mention that this book is set in 12th century England, during the time that John Lackland became king after the death of Richard the Lionheart. As always, a time like that brings trouble and so there is a lot of arse licking at court and battles fought at the borders of the realm. History wise, I think the author did a good job in portraying a reality of life at the time, one of them being marriage. Marriage wasn't always for love, most definitely not for the aristocracy, and this was one of the major subjects in this novel.
Even though this is a love story, there is also villain who has to be brought to justice.
Seren, the protagonist, is only a sixteen year old young lady at the start of the book. As a reader, you're introduced to Seren in a bloody scene: a battle is roaring around the castle she lives in and there is death all around her. It is more than a rumour, it is a fact, that she is able to see and speak with the dead. I will not spoil too much about her, but I think that it is obvious that she is to be married. As is made clear in the synopsis, there is unfortunately no love between her husband and herself. Instead, she falls in love with a spirit guide, George. Only she, out of all the living, can see and touch him.
This book was written from Seren's point of view, and it might be a personal issue of mine, but I really struggle with first person point of views. There's usually to much time spend in the mind of the protagonist, while I want to know more about what happens around the protagonist. That was exactly the case here. I liked it for a time, since the descriptions were good and it was interesting, but then this pov lost my interest. There was such a limited view, I think I would have liked it more if there was less time in Seren's head, and more time getting to know the time period and things about the spirits/spirit guides.
However, even though I may have had my problems with the first person pov, the writing itself was consistent and good. Whatever was described, was described well. I also think that, in a way, Seren grew throughout the book. She lost some of her naivete and learned to live in the world as it was.
The author was consistent about the amount of detail in the book. There was no ranting about everything for pages on end, but there was just enough to get a couple of images in my mind. There was no single thing that deserved more attention than another and I really appreciated that.
One small thing that I have to mention is this: I'm not sure of it's just me, or if anyone else felt the same way, but I felt like the end was just suddenly there. In my opinion it could have been worked out differently so that, perhaps, some things would make more sense and there would have been closure on multiple things. No, I'm not going to spoil anything here, I'm just wondering if anyone has had the same experience. Apart from that the 'timeline' and the pace was consistent.
Now, it's rating time and I have decided on a three star rating. I liked the idea of the book and it was interesting. In the end, however, I'm not quite sure if this book was what I had expected it to be after reading the first few pages. Even though I think the ending was a little abrupt, I think the rest of the book was quite alright. Maybe, I'm just not meant for paranormal romance. In any case I liked the book, therefore I'll give it three stars.
I've not been that active for a while now and that is because of my end-terms (yes, it's that time of the year again). But here is my newest review, this time on the third part of the Outlier Prophecies by Tina Gower: The Werewolf Coefficiency. You can check out my review by clicking the link!
And, just in case you're interested, I've also posted a short series about medieval England from roughly 500-1066 on my blog as well. Here is the link to part 1.
If anyone here has end-terms, exams, resits, whatever: GOOD LUCK! WE CAN DO THIS!
Well written... but unfortunately we just didn't get along that well. For the full review just click on the link below. Have a nice day and enjoy the weather! (I say this because the sun is shining in my tiny/flat country for the first time without being accompanied by rain!)
There was suspense, action, drama, funny scenes, rather gruesome horrible scenes, character development, and maybe even future nightmares of scary human/rat like creatures. All in all I think that this was great, I could have read it in one way if I had had the time. I give this book 4.5 stars because I really liked it.
For the full review click on the link :): https://mybookfile.wordpress.com/2016/04/25/dylan-doose-sword-and-sorcery-fire-sword/
Heej there people!
Today is the second day of The Lad Lit Blog Tour (an initiative of Steven Scaffardi, writer of the series Sex, Love & Dating Disasters)! For this occasion I've interviewed the author ^^ (my first interview ever!)
For the entire interview click here.
Sneakpeek: interested in who Steven would date if he could choose any of the girls from Sex, Love & Dating Disasters?
Enjoy your day ^^
Ending her first month as an employee for the Accidental Death Department on probation, Kate Hale is afraid that her days are numbered. Now, on her boss's orders, she is a private consultant for a Love Predictions Company that suffers from a security glitch. Eager to prove herself worthy Kate wants nothing more than to solve this case, but the company wants to prevents rather than solve the problem.
Even though this case does not directly involve Ian Becker, the werewolf copper, that doesn't mean that there is no reason to be vigilant. Danger is always closer than you think.
I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.
"It wasn't lurking. Werewolves get protective. It's just an instinct. It's like salivating when you smell tacos."
I'm stunned. Speechless.
Becker just compared obsessing on me to tacos.
After the snuggle session in the first book, Kate and Ian are snuggling together more and more often (bad person if you think there's more involved than snuggling!). Their relationship moves to a whole other level... of awkwardness. While at night Kate is 'temporarily' replacing Becker's pack, during the day they are just two people who don't really know how to act around each other. This new situation causes some comical scenes and also results in an overprotective Becker (though this overprotectiveness is totally justified).
Throughout the second book their relationship changes slowly and as characters they both grow and adjust to their situation.
In my review about the first book I mentioned the lack of information on the characters. In this book this changes because while reading the sequel there are more clues given about the pasts of Kate and Becker. Not much, but enough to keep wondering about; what else. The minor characters are still just there but in this book I didn't have the feeling that I needed more information on them because the main focus was on Kate and Becker. One thing I specifically liked is the fact that even though the attraction between the two is totally obvious, there is no instant and for-ever-together-unconditional-lover-thing going on. They are trying to figure it all out together because they are both not sure what to do with the situation or how to behave towards each other. As realistic as things can be in an Urban Fantasy novel.
An aspect that continues to unfold is the plot that started in the first book. The Outlier Prophecies is something in the background in this sequel but it is still present and mentioned a couple of times. Just this lack of attention paid to this main event keeps me interested and willing to read more because I simply want to know where this is going!
There's also new information on some other species that roam around in this world and something of a historical background story of Angel's Peak. Combine this with a wider view on the environment and the excitement of wanting to know more at the end of this book, I can proudly say that I'm content so far.
Overall there was a steady pace as the story continued. There were no unnecessary detours and I'm more interested in what is going to happen after reading this sequel. I like the fact that, for as far as it's possible in an Urban Fantasy novel, that Gower kept things real and believable. This is a good sequel because the story simply continues towards the end goal, not suddenly changing in style or anything, and I'm still interested to know about what is to come. I give this book 3.5 stars.
I received a free copy from Natgalley in exchange for an honest review.
“For all who still believe in magic… and dragons”
This story will take you back to Ireland in the time when Christianity slowly gained support, Northmen came to attack the country and where there was war among clans and kings. These things were, however, not that unusual during that time period but it was lovely to read about these things through Ash’s point of view. Since she was raised by badgers, ever since they found her after the raid, she had no idea of human traditions or ways of life. Reading about the above through her eyes makes it all seem so trivial and illogical. This was a refreshing point of view which I really liked.
The setting is great and well worked out. Sometimes I wished that there were some more details, but the amount of detail suited the story. There was enough information on the age, environment, people and magic for the story to be fully formed without any holes. I specifically liked the way the features from the time period were represented. Again there was not too much detail here but just enough to get a clear picture of, for example, some of the traditional celebrations or a description of a raid.
I also liked the idea of a small community concealed and protected by an ancient forest. The idea that there is a mutual understanding between the forest and the people who may live inside it was very original and that the forest decides to let you enter and that it protects the people it keeps within is just marvellous.
Unfortunately I didn’t like most of the characters that much. There was some information on them, but not much. The information provided was at first about their looks and then sometimes a detail here and there about their movements or motives. In my opinion most characters were somewhat flat in this first book. It could be because they were minor-characters, but also those that I thought of as more important characters could have had some more depth. Some of the animals were described in some more details and maybe that is why I liked Ash’s conversations with them best.
I really did like Peíst as a character and as a historical/mythological phenomenon because it appears that a dragon or great serpent was in fact called Peíst. I found more information on this subject on this blog: The Atlantic Religion.(Click here for the link to the post). In order not to spoil anything more I’ll just say this: Peíst and his history are well worked out and it appeared to me like this is going to come back in more detail later on in the series (at least I hope so…please?)
The writing style was pleasant. I’m so glad that it was not first person because that would have made for a less appealing tale. There was a clear direction as to where the story was going and even though some of the sidetracks screamed; I am interesting, the storyline just continued the way it was supposed to. There was no use of difficult diction and the descriptions themselves created a picture of everything that was going on in the story. Like I already said, there were no holes that I felt I had to fill up in order to understand the book.
Overall I liked it but I am still a little reserved. Though the historical background and the magic were great, the flat characters made it a little less interesting at certain points so that my mind wandered around a bit. I am curious as to where this is going so I am looking forward to the sequel! I will give this book 3.5 stars.
I absolutely loved The Warlock and the Wolf by Delfy Hall. Click on the link for my review!
Here's another review from a recently read book called Iron Inheritance. Check out the review on my blog by clicking this link: https://mybookfile.wordpress.com/2016/04/04/g-r-fillinger-the-blood-artifacts-iron-inheritance/
Good luck surviving monday, I have faith in you all!
My review on Vampire outlaw by Dan Davis. The book was published today!
Dan Hilles is just a normal guy with a job, a small group of friends and a long-term girlfriend, but not for long. Things start to change for Dan when he breaks-up with his girlfriend Stacey and he finds himself single again for the first time in three years. Unfortunately for him things don't change in his favour and he enters a period of drought.
With some near death experiences, more than a couple of awkward dates and some really embarrassing situations, things are getting real complicated. But Dan has a goal and he will not stop until he ends the drought.
I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.
"We sang it loud. We sang it proud. We sang it with passion. We sang it completely tone deaf. But it didn't matter. It was the perfect end to the evening."
Dan has been with Stacey for three years now but she has changed a lot since he met her at university. It all goes wrong at new years even when they get into another fight and Dan decides to spend the night with his friends instead of with her. After the nearly fifty messages she left him that night alone, he decides to put an end to it. But things don't really go as planned and instead of breaking up kind of 'peacefully' he gets kicked out of the house by Stacey best friend Sophie who wants to kill him with a baseball bat.
From that point on things change, but not for the better. Time and again Dan gets himself into the must stupid and surreal situations, even his friends are unable to help him break the drought and as it goes on Dan is getting more desperate.
Rob, Ollie and Jack try to help him as best as they can but even their knowledge combined can't save Dan from making a complete fool of himself. He even manages to get on the television twice! (not under the best circumstances but heej there is no such thing as bad publicity right?)
So yes I did read the sequel first but that doesn't matter because this book is just as awesome, funny and amusing ^_^ Why you ask? Well here is why:
This book is everything I hoped it would be. There are the familiar yet unimaginable situations he is able to get into. He does it all on his own and I have to say that is very impressive. I've got more than one favourite scene is this book but I think that this one is the one I loved the most:
"'I bumped into Simon Peterson yesterday.' Rob said. 'He lives on Mantilla Road.'
'So what?' I sneered.
'He happened to mention that he saw you on his road on Wednesday night,' Rob announced. 'He was working on his car. He would have said hello, but you sprinted past him at a ferocious pace with a dog chasing you.'
'Was it a poodle?' Ollie questioned.
'No it wasn't a poodle,' I said. 'It was a big horrible, snarling beast.'
'Simon said it was a sausage dog.' Rob said and they all started laughing again.
This is a scene where Dan is having a drink with his friends and yes they're making fun of him again. Now what happened before this is quite hilarious because it has to do with a date that would have stopped Dan's drought. Dan got a second chance with Grace and just as they were going to take it one step further, he discovers that he doesn't have any condoms with him. Getting dressed to get some at a store nearby, he runs out of Grace's house but by the time he has to get back he finds out that he has no idea how to get back at all. That is when, after walking some time, he encounters a big horrible snarling beast... that turned out to be a sausage dog.
This book was so much fun to read and even though I read the second book first it didn't affect me at all because everything that happened was just as unexpected. The amazing characters combined with the easy use of language, the everyday scenes and hilarious situations made for a great book.
Again this book brings the whole dating-scenario from a totally different perspective. Not from the female point of view but from a man's and that makes it all the more fun to read. It is that I am a woman myself but by reading this I understand that most man don't understand women at all, sometimes even I don't understand women (or myself for that matter) at all.
Some of the language and scenes might be a little too harsh or descriptive for some people but that just made it better in my opinion.
Overall I think the book was great and it was so much fun to read. I would recommend this book to everyone who loves romance/comedy/chicklit kind of novels. I give this book four stars because me really likey.
This book is set in present day Northern California in a city called Angel's Peak. Kate has just been promoted from the Traffic department to the Accidental Death Prediction Department and even though it is no setback, it's pretty uneventful.
It is on a weekend that an oracle appears at her desk with a Death Prediction concerning not just anyone... but himself. At first eager to give this task to someone more qualified, Kate is ready to follow protocol and takes the oracle, Jack, to another department where they meet Officer Ian Becker. Unlike Kate, Becker is quite willing to take on the case and so with a little persuasion Kate and Becker take the case.
But some things don't add up with this case and as Kate and Becker put more and more effort into solving the case, it only seems to get more complex.
After reading this book I can't help but feel somewhat incomplete.
Don't get me wrong because I did like the concept (I'll come back to that) but there were some things missing for me.
First of all the concept. I really did like the idea about there being some sort of organisation/society that is able to predict deaths and so, when the mortality rate is high enough, this organisation can help to prevent this death (a nice touch is that some of these high risk deaths can be prevented but the victim might die in another way anyway). In this world there are not only humans but also werewolves, elves, leprechauns, witches, druids, oracles and you name it. The whole living arrangement and the whole being of the oracles was worked out into detail, which I liked, but there were some things missing for me. I know this is Urban Fantasy so as a reader you can assume that the world is much like our own but I would've liked to read more about the society itself. Are some things very different from our world because of these prophesies or does this whole complex system exist within our own society?
Then there are the characters. The two major characters, Kate and Becker, were worked out okay but there could have been some more personal information.
Of course minor characters don't usually have a lot of information about themselves so their information was sufficient enough. Like I already said the whole oracle topic was quite well explained through the oracle who helps Kate to understand the 'oracle world' better.
The overall storyline was good, it was a light and easy read. There was a moment of doubt which I really liked, the who-can-we-trust-moment, but when we got to the point where I expected most of the confrontation to happen it was not all that I had hoped for. Yes, there was a fight but then it was all over and good and as I read towards the very end I was afraid that that was it. Luckily, that wasn't just it because there was just a small plot twist at the end just to show that fate can happen anyway, an aspect that I really liked. I was left with a cliffhanger at the end, of course, and I am curious about the next book to see if I'll learn more about the different factions and struggles within this society.
This was an okay book but if there would have been some more details here and there I would've felt more complete at the end. I give this book three stars because it could have been better but it was nice to read.
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review
(For the review incl. the tiny spoiler moment click here).