April Wrap up

Sadly, there were no bangs in April.

Please click on the book covers for full reviews.

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Interesting setting but the story was too familiar

Bang Bang Rating: bombbombbomb


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Elementary writing; poor character development; awful pacing

Bang Bang Rating: bombbomb


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High school problems-No bueno

Bang Bang Rating: bombbombbomb 1/4


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Plot moves too quickly and there’s not enough world building to connect to any of the characters.

Bang Bang Rating: DNF


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My co-worker and I have a challenge to recommend one book to each other.  Her recommendation was the first three volumes of Saga. I’ve read the first two and I like it so far.  Simple yet complex plot, great characters, and humorous.

Bang Bang Rating: bombbombbombbomb


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The plot was a bit obscure and meandering but I really liked it a lot and I plan to finish but these books are so LONG and I really want to finish Game of Thrones this year.  I might do this first because I don’t want to forget what happens.  I watch GOT so there’s no threat of forgetting.

Bang Bang Rating: bombbombbombbomb 1/2

Did you read any of these books? What were your thoughts?



May TBR

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March Wrap Up-Any Bangs?

Hell NO!

March was a slow month for new pubs and my reading reflects it also. I didn’t feel like reading much so there’s that. As always, please click the cover or title for a full review (not all titles have reviews).

Because of my podcast with Roulette Reader, I try to only read books published in the month we are currently in.

Here’s our March best and worst podcast 

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The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

Basic writing and weak character development.  This got picked up by Netflix-SERIOUSLY?

Bang Bang Rating bombbomb


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Dance of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson

A little sluggish in the middle but great character development and story.

Bang Bang Rating bombbombbombbomb


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The Case for Jamie by Brittany Cavallaro

Cavallaro is a good writer I just wish she would focus.

Bang Bang Rating: DNF


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The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien

Unpopular Opinion Time-Lots of info-dumping. I’ll watch the movies but I won’t finish the books.

Bang Bang Rating: I’m not rating it-LOL


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Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young

Nothing new to see here folks but I liked the characters.

Bang Bang Rating bombbombbomb 3/4


April TBR

I’ve decided to start some adult fantasy and Robin Hobb came highly recommended. If I like it, I’ll read book two this month.  Roulette Reader and I have a challenge where I’m making her read a book and vice versa.  She recommended Saga, the first three volumes.

Sky in the Deep

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Sky in the Deep

By Adrienne Young

Genre: Fantasy/Vikings

Publication Date: April 24, 2018

Bang Bang Review

The Aska tribe and the Riki tribe are life long opposers and every five years they meet on the battlefield.  During the battle, Eelyn sees her brother she thought was dead fighting for the opposition.  Desperate for answers, Eelyn follows her brother only to find her self in captivity by the Riki.  In an effort to escape, Eelyn and her Riki captors discover a bigger clansman threat and must band together or die.

So this story is not new. We have a Katniss-like warrior who loves her people over all else and would never betray them.   They mourn their fallen while blaming the enemy never caring about killing the loved ones of their enemies that is until our MC is forced to live and get to know them.  There’s an enemy guy with a compassionate soul and a little boy who loves unconditionally.  Basically, it’s the last two episodes of Game of Thrones where the family squabbles are pointless when the white walkers will wipe everyone out if they don’t fight together.  What’s different is the setting-a Scandinavian type land.

We’re not getting anything new here but the writing is good enough to keep the reader interested.  The pacing however was a problem.  The first half took place over a matter of six weeks or so and the last half took place over six days.  I’ll use a GOT reference again.  It’s like when it took Arya seven seasons to get back to Winterfell but in the seventh season, it took Jon Snow an episode to get to Dragonstone.

There was a slow burn romance that was adequate and sweet. Have I shipped better couples? Yes but they weren’t the worst (Chaol & Nesryn-gross). Although I don’t understand going to war every five years because it’s just what you do, I didn’t hate it. Maybe that’s the Viking way and I don’t know my history.  It wasn’t nuanced enough to give it higher than…

Bang Bang Rating bombbombbomb 3/4

The Dance of Thieves

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The Dance of Thieves

By Mary E. Pearson

Genre: Fantasy

Publication Date: August 7, 2018

Bang Bang Review

Disclaimer: If you are saying to yourself, “Self, I didn’t like Kiss of Deception even though lots of other people loved it. Maybe I’ll try Pearson’s new book.” You are probably not going to like Dance of Thieves because the tone is extremely similar to KOD.  It’s long, 460 pages, there’s a journey on foot early on, and there’s lots of story and character development. If you like plot driven story, you are going to think this is slow.

Now on to the review. It’s six years after the big battle and Lia is the Queen of Venda. She has an army called Rahtan and our main character Kazi is a member of that army.  Kazi was orphaned at six and grew up as a street rat in the Komizar’s Venda. She found herself in Lia’s army and a loyal servant of the new Queen.  There’s a traitor in a nearby settlement and Kazi and her five person crew must infiltrate, locate the traitor, and bring him back to Venda.

Jase is the new leader of his town and his family rules all.  When Kazi and the Rahtan come to his town, he wants answers but is soon publicly humiliated by Kazi and wants retribution.  Originally at odds, Jase and Kazi find themselves chained together by slavers and must rely on each other for survival.

I’m not going to give a long review but DOT has great character development in Kazi and Jase and Pearson is a beautiful storyteller.  The beginning is really strong and I loved Kazi and Jase. Kazi has a heartbreaking history and Jase transforms from a seemingly spoiled brat to a compassionate leader.  It did get a bit sappy between the two and I think it dragged a bit in the middle. This book could have been about 50 pages shorter.

If you are a fan of KOD, which I am, I definitely recommend Pearson’s new series.

Bang Bang Rating bombbombbombbomb

The Wicked Deep

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The Wicked Deep

By Shea Ernshaw

Genre: Paranormal/Witches

Publication Date: March 6, 2018

Bang Bang Review

So there’s these three young ladies who happen along a small seaside town that absolutely HATES outsiders and I know this because the author reminds us ad nauseam. These ladies are not special besides their beauty and all the men, including the married ones, fall in love with them so the town agrees that they are witches and decide to drown them in the lake or sea or some body of water. This has become the 200 year old legend of this SMALL town and every year since those ladies were drowned, three boys are drowned. During the summer, people come from all over the country because of this legend and to see boys drown-the perfect vacation for the family.

Penny, our MC, is a plain gal who never wants to leave her town and is left to take care of her mother who is depressed over the sudden vanishing of her husband. Penny’s mother is also a tea leaf reader and has foretold that Penny will meet a mysterious guy-enter mysterious guy named Bo. Bo of course is dark and brooding. He has a nice body and great hair and he’s O so handy. Bo is a skeptic and doesn’t believe in the bullshit of these three witches but Penny does and she has a secret that I won’t share but I’ll remind you of her secret throughout my review so you can experience the agony I felt while reading this book. For 100/380 pages, Penny, her secret, and her best friend, attend an end of the year party with tropey classmates where Bo comes to her rescue. Penny and her secret spend time with Bo trimming hedges and discussing the town’s legend. The POV shifts from Penny and her secret to introduce the witches 200 years prior.

Finally after 100 pages, someone dies. Then the teens in the town loose their fucking minds and choose some random classmate to lock and tie in a boat house because they believe her to be a witch.  They have no proof and the teen captors then proceed to argue that she’s a witch and no you can’t just be judge and jury.  Hmmm, is this a modern day version of what happened to the witches 200 years ago? YES, WE’RE NOT DUMB. Penny, her secret, her best friend, and Bo just leave that girl locked up for days with no toilet.

Some stuff we all see coming happens, Penny reveals her big secret, Penny and Bo fall in love after a couple of weeks, more boys die, the mystery behind Penny’s father’s disappearance is told, and blah blah blah.

Wicked Deep had an interesting idea but the execution-YIKES!  Ernshaw tried to do something by adding the disappearance of the father and jumping back 200 years to tell the witches story but her writing just isn’t strong enough to make this book stand out. The storytelling is basic. The witches arrive and since they are independent ladies, they go to bars and drink and talk loudly-oooh scandalous.  They jokingly say they are witches and then the townspeople drown them. That’s literally how their story is told; no nuance or character development.  There’s nothing new or special about Penny or Bo and they fall in love too quickly.  And finally, this town has a population of 2000 people so if you do the math, three boys die every year for 200 years-that’s 600 people. That’s 1/3 of their town. If three teen boys were drowned every year in my smallish town, it wouldn’t be a vacation destination, people would be moving in droves.  And that ending-SERIOUISLY?!

I didn’t like this book.

Bang Bang Rating  bombbomb

Top Ten Tuesday

I haven’t done this in a while but I LOVE quotes so here are my favorite book quotes in no particular order:

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish

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“People really are like house with vast rooms and tiny windows. And maybe it’s a good thing, the way we never stop surprising each other.”


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“The thing about falling is you don’t have any control on your way down.”


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“KISS ME, HARDY! Kiss me, QUICK!”


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“We all make mistakes… but it’s also a step in the right direction. If nothing else it’s a step away from the wrong one.”


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“Macho Nachos be damned!”


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“It does not due to dwell on dreams and forget to live.”


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“I will have you without armor, Kaz Brekker. Or I will not have you at all.”


nick and norah

Technically it’s from the movie and not the book but I’m using it anyway-LOL

“I refuse to be the goody bag at your pity party.”


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“They love their hair because they’re not smart enough to love something more interesting.”


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It’s more contextual than profound

“I don’t care.”

February Reads-Any Bangs?

YES!!

February was a slow month which caused me to lower my Goodreads goal from 70 to 50-YIKES. But I don’t want to stress myself out when October approaches and I’m 30 books behind.

I read some shitty books and one fantastic book.  As usual, click the picture or the title for a full review.

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The Last Beginning by Lauren James

I read this for SLJ (School Library Journal) so I can’t review it until after it is published.


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Losing Leah by Tiffany King

DAMN this book was disappointing.  Leah’s development was poor and there were no answers to her issues.  The pacing was bananas and some things were unrealistic.

Bang Bang Rating: bomb


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The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza by Shaun David Hutchinson

Great premise but the execution…Too many people giving Elena too much advice-it dragged down the plot.

Bang Bang Rating: bombbomb 3/4


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Immortal Reign by Morgan Rhodes

I stopped caring. I’m just glad it’s over.

Bang Bang Rating: bombbombbomb


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Furyborn by Claire LeGrand

So this book is pretty great. There’s strong female friendships and complicated villains and uncertainty of identity and cliffhangers and a fascinating world and secrets and you just need to read it.

I want all the SWAG and I want to meet Claire.

bang




February TBR

  • Finally reading Lord of the Rings.  I haven’t seen any of the movies so I know nothing about it.
  • Kiss of Deception is in the top five favorite fantasy series of all time and I’m really excited to read Pearson’s new series. If you haven’t read Kiss of Deception, I highly recommend it but it is not a fluffy read-be prepared to take notes.
  • I highly recommend The Case For Jamie if you love Sherlock Holmes-great character development.