Wednesday, March 29, 2006

#18 Once by James Herbert

My Rating: 6 out of 10 stars

Hmmm… how did I feel about this book? Well, I think it could’ve been a lot better in some regards, but I really liked the underlying story. For starters, I didn’t like the author’s frequent use of parenthesis and dashes, in the middle of a thought, where he’d go off on a tangent in another direction, just to return to the original thought of the sentence. For instance, dashes should be used for short thoughts inserted into the stream of thought, but when that inserted stream of thought goes on for 5 or 6 lines, before returning to finish the sentence… well, I found myself having to go back and reread the sentence without the inserted text to understand what the author was trying to say. He sometimes used parenthesis in the same way. So all that got annoying after awhile.

Secondly, speaking as a practicing Witch and Pagan, I disliked the use of the word Wiccan to refer to what Nell was. A Wiccan is a very specific denomination of Witchcraft, and what Nell practiced was definitely not Wicca. Nell was a Witch, but she was not a Wiccan. A Wiccan is a Witch, but a Witch is not necessarily a Wiccan. I think the author should spend a bit more time researching the subject of Wiccans and Witchcraft before throwing around terminology he obviously knows nothing about.

Now that all that nasty stuff is out of the way, I found the underlying story interesting and hard to put down. I particularly liked the sex scenes; they were pretty hot for a non-erotica book! :-P I also liked author’s portrayal of the Faerie world, and the characters of Jennet and Rigwit. But found Hugo, Thom’s longtime friend, to be particularly annoying and spineless.

Overall, a fairly decent read, though it lost points because of the points I mentioned above. I’ll certainly look for and read more by this author though, particularly since others have stated this wasn’t even one of his better books.

See the BookCrossing journal page for this book for more reviews and information. See more progress on: read 100 books in 2006.

Monday, March 20, 2006

#17 Undead and Unappreciated by MaryJanice Davidson

My Rating: 9 out of 10 stars

This is the 3rd book in MJD’s Undead series and it was great! I swear this series is getting better as it goes along. Either that or Betsy is just growing on me! LOL In this book, Betsy finds out that her stepmom was possessed by the devil for 10 months and now she’s got a 20 year old half-sister who’s the devil’s daughter and destined to rule the world! I only wish these books were a bit longer. At 271 pages (and fairly large type), it’s a really quick read. Quirky, funny, and left me wanting more!

Saturday, March 18, 2006

#16 Moonheart by Charles de Lint

My Rating: 7 out of 10 stars

The story started off kind of slow and I found my mind wandering while I was trying to read. Fortunately, the pace picked up fairly quickly with the second part of the book, and it became much more to my liking (and much harder to put down or fall asleep on LOL).

I did have a hard time keeping track of a lot of the minor characters though, especially since many of them had last names beginning with W (Williams, Walters, Wilson), and then sometimes the author would use their first name instead of their last (Mike, Wally, etc.). Add to that alot of the Fae and Indian names of the characters in the Otherworld too… So this was almost one of those books I wanted to keep a post-it on the back with the full names of the characters and the pages where they’re introduced so I could keep track of who was who.

It takes place over multiple worlds, and many of the characters find themselves in the Otherworld, and in Sara’s case, even in the past, affecting events in her own future. Kinda trippy when you think about it. So I liked that. :)

Overall, a pretty decent read, and since this was my first book by de Lint, I’m looking forward to reading more of his stuff. (I’m also in a ring for Wolf Moon. If you’re interested, the link for it is on my bookshelf.) For additional reviews and information on Moonheart, see the BookCrossing journal page for this book. See more progress on: read 100 books in 2006.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

#15 Dancing with the Devil by Keri Arthur

Dancing with the Devil by Keri Arthur

My Rating: 8 out of 10 stars

This looks to a good start to an interesting series by Keri Arthur. This book was written and published back in 2001 by ImaJinn Books, a small publisher, and thus many talk of Full Moon Rising, released February 2006, as being her first novel. You can see the full list of Keri’s books at her website:

Nikki is a psychic Private Investigator who is introduced to the world of vampires because of a case she’s working regarding a missing girl. Michael is a 300 year old vampire, an ally who offers to help her track down the vampire Jasper, who’s wreaking havoc on the city and has turned the missing girl, Monica Trevgard, as a pawn in his dangerous game. But Nikki, with a past full of hurt, is afraid to trust Michael, and is even more afraid of her feelings for him, even before finding out he’s a vampire.

On her site, Keri calls this book a vampire romance, but it actually fits better into the mystery or horror genre, which is where Amazon classified it, since the romance side of things is more of a side story than the main theme.

More detail can be found at the BookCrossing journal page for this book. See more progress on read 100 books in 2006.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

#14 Three to Get Deadly by Janet Evanovich

My Rating: 8 out of 10 stars

Another quick and funny read by Evanovich in the Stephanie Plum series. Though I still think, maybe moreso in this book than the previous two, that Stephanie is such an idiot at times and more than half the trouble she gets into is of her own making. Nonetheless, she’s still pretty funny, and the stuff she gets into while on the hunt for Uncle Mo, along with Lula and Morelli, brought a chuckle more than once. I’d so like to see Stephanie wind up with Morelli eventually, and there were hints of this coming in this book. :)

See the BookCrossing journal page for this book for more reviews and information. See more progress on read 100 books in 2006.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

#13 The Queen's Fool by Philippa Gregory

My Rating: 9 out of 10 stars

Wow, another great book by Philippa Gregory! I thought this was just about as good as The Other Boleyn Girl. Once I finished it, I immediately went and added the sequel, The Virgin’s Lover, to my wish list as I’m really looking forward to the story of Elizabeth. Both her and Robert Dudley were my favorite characters in this book, and they’re the primary characters in the next book. :)

Just like in The Other Boleyn girl, Gregory takes historical fact and weaves a tale around it. There’s a few main characters in this book, with Mary, the daughter of Henry VIII and his first wife Catherine of Aragon, being the main character of historical significance. She’s sometimes remembered as “Bloody Mary” because of all the supposed heretics she had burned at the stake.

This story is told from the point of view of Hannah the Fool, the daughter of a Jewish bookseller who escaped persecution with her father from Spain to England after her mother was burned as a heretic. I believe Hannah’s character is completely fictional, but her story is interesting nonetheless. She’s got the gift of a Seer, and as the Queen’s Fool, she dresses in breeches, and doesn’t really have to mind what she says as most women would… she’s “a fool” after all.

Her loyalties are continually tested as she’s a trusted companion to Queen Mary, as well as her half-sister, the Princess Elizabeth, and Robert Dudley, both of whom are later imprisoned and charged with treason in a plot to strip Queen Mary from the throne. Hannah moves among these groups and they all trust her; many times she doesn’t even realize the plots she’s actually involved in as she’s asked to bring some cryptic message from one to another. She tries to speak only the truth and often the Sight compels her to do so. Had the Queen listened to Hannah before agreeing to marry Prince Philip of Spain, she may have been saved a lot of heartache, and what eventually became her undoing.

See the BookCrossing journal page for this book for more reviews and information. See more progress on: read 100 books in 2006.