Tuesday, 18 April 2017

White Hot Hot Hot

Just finished re-re-re-listening Burn For Me today and I just can't wait for White Hot. Just. Can't. Gimme. Please.

Friday, 14 April 2017

Last Breath; Templar book 2 by Debra Dunbar

I jumped to this book right after Dead Rising, I'm almost a nonstop- reader/listener, I always have some book that I'm reading. So, after Dead Rising, I spent my last credit to buy this on Audible.

This started right after where Dead Rising left. But now, Aria has a whole new enemy to track and bring to justice. Someone or something is killing local mages, who have been naughty doing morally and legally unacceptable magics to ward of some unknown evil.

Aria pairs up with an open-minded detective Trelawney, she starts to track down the killers, and the mages to bring them to justice.  She reconciles with her ex-bff Raven from Haul Du, and tries to move on from her forbidden feeling to Dario and start dating again.

But nothing goes as planned. Aria has to face some heartbreaking losses, to hard decisions and think what justice truly is and is it OK to deliver the said justice herself.

I found interesting in this book the demon summoning and the angel lore. Aria's accidental high was relatively funny, but nor hilarious. Plot was easy to follow and narrator sill did an excellent job. Cover was beautiful.

Aria still was whiny and hypocritical. I find "deep and thoughtful" inner monologue extremely boring and this book had it's own share of it. This time I didn't feel her attraction towards Dario and it felt forced. Plot was predictable and the villain was obvious. And why the hell she always has to be sleep deprived? I don't get it.

This series truly isn't as brilliant as The Imp from the same author. I might pick up the next installment if I don't have anything else to read.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Dead Rising; Templar book One by Debra Dunbar.

As a fan of the Imp series by Debra Dunbar, I was intrigued to hop on to this series as well. I've been listening the Imp series book-per-day pace on a row, so I'm on a serious series-burnout with Samantha Martin and Gregory, and I needed some change. More thoughts about The Imp coming soon.

I listened this book as an audiobook. Narrator Elizabeth Phillips was really good. She didn't make male voices annoying or awkward, which many female narrators actually do. She was articulate and easy to follow, her pace was good, not too fast or too slow, and her voice is pleasant to listen. She fit well to role of Aria and I liked her overall performance.

To the story itself. Aria was bit whiny at times, religious stuff annoyed me a bit but it was part of being a Templar, so it was natural. Dario and his seductive vampire routine (which I'm so over, btw, too much vampire-obsession in my past. One word for you, Spike!) was surprisingly believable and I felt Aria's attraction, it wasn't forced. I actually ship them.

What annoyed me the most was that Aria was naive girl at times and her saviour-of-the-world complex was frustrating. "Hey, here is a bunch of blood-sucking murderers! Oh they really try not to kill their blood-slaves, they even last for two months! I feel so sorry for them, I must save them from this guy who's family those bloodsuckers murdered and who is seeking for revenge! I must save this guy too, he's just a pilgrim strayed from his right path!" Ugh.

What I liked this book was the worldbuilding. Not too much detailed or too exaggerated,  it was subtle and easy to follow. The whole templar-angle was interesting.

The book lacked the banter and humour of the Imp series, but I don't think that's  a bad thing.

I will be reading (or listening) the next installment. I actually bought it right after I finished this one.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Penryn and the End of Days

Ever since I read Margit Sandemo's Legend of the Ice People, I've been a sucker for fallen angels. Over the years I've reads some crappy books, some decent books and few good books about fallen angles and nasty angles. And then I read Penryn and the End of days.

The first book Angelfall really, REALLY knocked my socks off. It was really good. Dystopian, non-stereotypical urban-fantasy world with a kick-ass underdog heroine, who has no mysterious magical powers, just her wits and determination, with some martial-art skills she has trained several years. She has no saviour-of-the-world-syndrome, she just wants to save her loved ones. And then she wants to get revenge.

Penryn is a 17-year old girl in a world after angel invasion. For unknown reason, angels decided to invade our world and caused a series of natural catastrophes by doing so. Humans were enraged and responded with gun blazing, and managed to kill the head-honco, archangel Michael, which in turn made angles really angry and they started to oppress humankind. Penryn's mother has serious case of schizophrenia, and her little sister is crippled and bound to a wheelchair. When she's trying to move them to a safer place from a gang-controlled neighbourhood, she runs to a group of angles trying to kill another angel after they cut his wings off. Against her better judgement, she helps the injured wingless angel and the attackers in respond kidnap her sister and, in the mayhem, her mother vanishes.

Raffe is an archangel who has roamed the earth for thousands of years, trying to find and kill every nephilim that the fallen Grigori made when they fell. He has not been a part of the angel society and has no part in the invasion. When he's attacked by few of his fallen comrades, he loses his wings and is saved by a human girl. He needs her help to get to the angel headquarters, and agrees to accompany her there, because she needs to get there to save her sister.

Pairing up with the injured, sulky angel whom she saved, Penryn starts a journey towards the angel headquarters. They don't trust each other one bit, but they need each other to get to their destination. When they get there, they discover that the angels on top have serious conspiracy going on and Penryn has to discover their plans with Raffr to save her sister... and the humankind.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Series ranting: Mercy Thompson

Since I've read all the books in Mercy Thompson series, I decided to rant about the series instead of separate books.

I'm really ass-kicker heroine (heh) junkie. I love strong female leads. Sorry, I just do. I hate whining damsels in distress. And I also hate instalove, Mary Sue's, perfect characters, teen-anst, lack of action, too much erotica. But, I love an ass-kicker. Mercy Thompson is one. I have to admit, the first book (Moon Called) was a bit dull. I liked it, but I didn't love it. Somehow the references to religion bothered me to no end. What a good Christian Mercy was.. Blah, dull. But I picked up the next two books too, until I lost interest.

But then I had nothing interesting to read, so I  started again, this time as audiobook. Lorelei King was familiar to me, because of Charley Davidson (She really is an excellent narrator) And wow, did I had a whole new interest in these books. Mercy has huge character development without becoming omnipotent goddess. She always stays as an underdog. The best book in my opinions was River Marked, but that was before I read (listened) Silence Fallen, which really is the best so far.

Mercy is tough without being overkill, she's a bit underdog, sneaky, strong but not invincible. Really big part of her strength lies in her loved ones and in her connections, as she mentions in Silence Fallen.

Adam is perfectly likeable, although not amazing, male lead.

Worldbuilding is deep and elaborate, but not too much so it's easy to keep up.

And Patricia loses the Christianity-crap in these books, yay!

I have to admit, this is the only series so far that I could read (listen) in a row without getting tired. Okay, Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews was an another one, but still. Charley Davidson is still waiting for me to finish it.

Books in this series
1. Moon Called
2. Blood Bound
3. Iron Kissed
4. Bone Crossed
5. Silver Borne
6. River Marked
7. Frost Burned
8. Night Broken
9. Fire Touched
10 Silence Fallen

Patricia Briggs has also written the Alpha and Omega series, which takes place in the same world as Mercy Thompson, but different protagonists. It is a really good series too, check it out!

Monday, 20 February 2017

First rant: Written in red

I seriously love books. No scratch that, I seriously love good books. I like decent books. And I hate bad books with a fiery passion of thousand suns.

I prefer urban fantasy nowadays. There's nothing like a good fantasy book that takes you away from this pesky, boring world. My urban fantasy fandom started when I first read the Fever series my Karen Marie Moning. The first five books? Best thing ever. (The next four, not so much.) Or maybe the best thing after Kate Daniels (Seriously, I want to be Kate Daniels when I grow up. No, I am not grown up. Yes, I've graduated and work as an M.D but I'm still not grown up. Period.)

I used to read Kay Scarpetta novels and other mysteries with badass coroners as a lead, but now I can't stomach it. (Yes, dead people make me edgy). So fantasy it is.

While waiting for the newest Mercy Thompson(Hauptman) and the newest Hidden Legacy novel to come out (As audiobooks, preferably), and I had extra Audible credit to spend,  I picked up something new to me: Written in red by Anne Bishop, first in the Others series. It sounded decent.

First problem was that the narrator is... annoying. Yes, not everyone can be as good as Renee Raudman (I liked her more as Nevada Baylor than as Kate Daniels; Kate sounds more sardonic in my head when I read the books than what Renee makes her; still, very good narrator) or Lorelei King (Awesome!) but this Alexandra Harris sounds whiny and can't voice men at all. Well, she's not as annoying as some other narrators I've come across with, so I continued listening (I didn't have anything better to listen).

Okay, next will come some serious spoilers.

The Others just give this gal, who they know literally nothing about, and who knows literally uselles random shit, a job? Even though she has no skills to that job? Even though she can't even operate a coffeemaker?

Aaand, they all magically just like her, when they dislike, hate and just plain want to EAT other humans who they come across with? "Hey Meg, I just ate some yummy crunchy human ribs and a juicy liver from this random guy who trespassed, now let me have conficted and territorial feelings about you and practically want to hump you, even though you are human like my recent meal." Yeah right.

What? This Meg gets her visions by self-harm? Okay, I can live with that. Wait. She gets off on it? Craves for the razor, fights every day not to cut, but when she does, she sees visions that save a life of a young orphaned wolf-puppy/shapechanger?

Are you kidding me? Not glorifying self-harm at all?

While, as a term, Mary Sue is not very familiar to me, I think this Meg is a fine example of one.

I haven't finished the book yet and I'm not sure I can. I think I'll listen some Harry Potter now (Stephen Fry makes excellent job on it) and try to finish this later. Or maybe I return it and use the credit on One Fell Sweep (which I planned to buy anyway).