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Book Review – Nerissa The Forgotten Siren

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Title: Nerissa The Forgotten Siren

Author: Lainy Lane

Genre: Mythology

Length: 39

Rating: 1 Star

Description/Synopsis:

Legends are unable to go very far if there are no survivors to carry the stories.
You’ve heard of mythology before, but not like this.
The Untold Myths series tells the side of mythology that no one has dared to tell before.
Sirens, the songs that lead sailors to their watery graves. Ships sink at the hands of the people that steer them. Once the song has left a sirens mouth you are doomed. You may know the story of the three original sirens, but did you know there were actually four? Nerissa is the forgotten siren. Her story has never been told, until now…

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Such a shame. I always have such high hopes when it comes to stories about mermaids and this one just destroyed all of them.

The book pretty much was set in my bad books when it started off in the perspective of the Greek God Aphrodite. As someone who believes in these kinds of Gods, not necessarily these Gods but they are all along the same lines anyway and I have great respect for them all, I people are going to change things, add things, and make them their own when they bring them into their stories and when they do it well I really enjoy it, so don’t take my opinion against it as some religious disagreement. The portrayal of Aphrodite and all the other Gods was just horrible. Aphrodite, the god of love, was portrayed as someone who didn’t believe in it and hated it. Thats just stupid in my books. I can see someone changing it so that she ‘loves’ in the sense that she sleeps around all the time, but she can’t not believe in the very thing that makes her who she is. Her and all the other Gods were portrayed as over the top dramatic children. All they did was complain, and bitch and wallow in self pity. Not very Godly at all. Zeus was portrayed by Aphrodite as someone who got off on others pain. I mean come on now… Self pity runs strong in the main character as well.

I could have almost liked the ending how she becomes a human because Aphrodite sacrificed her ability to see her daughter so she could live happily ever after, but the whole love things that Nerissa was altering her life for happened way to quickly, there were a number of grammatically flawed sections, and just sections of the writing was horrid, excluding all the stupid nonsense of Gods being bitchy little cry babies.

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Book Review – Predatory

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Title: Predatory

Author: Alexandra Ivy, Nina Bangs, Dianne Duvall, Hanna Jayne.

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Suspense

Length: 254

Rating: 2-3 star average

Release Date: May 7th 2013

Description/Synopsis:

Four of today’s most exciting paranormal authors take readers into the thrilling realm of vampires, immortals, and other supernatural beings with a thirst for illicit desire…

Out Of Control by Alexandra Ivy
Ph.D student Angela Locke has a crush on her sexy professor, Dr. Nikolo Bartrev. When she learns he’s actually a Sentinel with extraordinary powers, she joins forces with him to catch a psychopath. But soon, their hottest pursuit is of each other…

Ties That Bind by Nina Bangs
Cassie Tyler agrees to sub for her friend at the funeral home where she works. But she gets more than she bargained for when a group of men attack her and a vampire comes to her rescue. . .

In Still Darkness by Dianne Duvall
Immortal Richart d’Alençon can’t forget the woman who rewarded him with a sensuous kiss after he saved her from a trio of vampires. While Richart knows that loving a human can only bring trouble, the taste of forbidden lust is too great to resist. . .

High Stakes by Hannah Jayne
When vampire fashionista Nina LaShay’s design contest rival is found dead, she’s the prime suspect. Sexy photographer Pike is number two. He’s the kind of man who makes Nina salivate. But will she have to reveal herself to have him–and to save them both? Or does Pike have a secret of his own?​

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Out Of Control by Alexandra Ivy 2 Star

This section of the book didnt impress me very much and it was very difficult to get into reading the book at all when it had such a poor opening story. To me this was basically just a shorty story version of a porno, just a quick bang that happens for the most random reasons which everyone is supposed to believe it plausible but really never would happen in a million years.The characters come into the story, instantly love or rather lust after one another. I didn’t feel any connect between the two main characters at all and found the overall insistence of the author that they actually love each other annoying because I didn’t believe it. The characters were hollow and I could barely tell the difference between them as I read, and the character Nikolo’s constant reminder that he was this great and powerful Sentinel was horrible. I understood that fact the first or at the very latest the third time you told me. Angela was also supposed to be smart, but some of the dialogue she spewed forth was just so idiotic I actually stopped reading for a bit to get over what had just been said.

Each of the stories in this book are very short but this one suffered greatly for the 60ish page limit each one had. The story really is just meant to a ‘trailer’ for a series of books that will be coming out at a later date, but it really wasnt suited for it. A story that could fit comfortably into a series let alone a full sized novel should not have been forced into such a small space. The idea of turning this book into a preview of ones to come kind of made me angry. The series name shall be Sentinel

All that being said though I have given the story a 2 star rating because if it wasn’t so short and wasn’t mainly focused on the sex, the actual story idea would have been very good. It has very X-Men qualities to it that could be very interesting. I would consider reading at least one book from the actual series to see if it has been presented better.

Ties That Bind by Nina Bangs – 3 Star

I didn’t mind this story so much.Granted it did move a tad quickly, but the stories within this book don’t really have much of a choice in the matter. The story line was enough to keep me interested until the end, but not so great as to leave a very big impression on me once I had finished reading it. The only thing that greatly stood out in this story was that the main character Cassie didn’t seem to have a very set personality like the author couldn’t quite make up her mind about which one persona she wanted her character to take. Other than that however, it was alright and it would probably be worth a read.

In Still Darkness by Dianne Duvall – 4 Star

We just keep going up with the star rating don’t we? But I actually loved this story. Though we had very little time with the characters I actually felt like I got to know them and could tell each of the apart and their names weren’t mentioned directly after a section of dialogue.This one is also a sort of preview for a series for books already published called Immortal Guardians, but this one didn’t leave me disappointed or anything at the end.It seemed to span over a greater period of time so the storyline didnt seem so rushed but was left open to more if it wanted. For this one I dare say I was supposed to know the characters before I started reading to know some of the background that was happening/mentioned, but I never once felt like I was missing something. It was very well put together or a short preview.

Also a romance, it didn’t focus on the sex either and the relationship seemed to grow more than something that was slapped together for the sake of it. The only thing really that I have to complain about with this book as that it kept switching character perspective when it wasn’t supposed to, but I don’t know if everyone would pick up on it, and it sure didn’t ruin the story for me. It was mainly something I picked up on because I try to focus on details like that when I send my response to the author that was kind enough to let me read the story before it was published.

Anyway, I now eagerly await the day I can read the actual series and get far more of these characters I fell in love with and the ones I wish I knew more about.

High Stakes by Hannah Jayne 2 Star

I fell asleep 3 times while reading this story. Thats a lot for about 60 pages of writing and having not been one bit tired. I was expecting more from this final story since the other ones seemed to improve the more I read into the book, but this one made the overall rating fall right back. The author tried to make it very hip and now to how people on the internet or some people on the street tend to speak, but what I think the author failed to pick up on that some of those things are really only said by 14 year olds and older people tend to stay away from the ridiculous sayings. It didn’t really work with the age group the book was trying to reach.

Again a preview for an already published series called Underworld Detection Agency, the story itself wasn’t so bad from a how it was written kind of way, and I felt like I was missing things in this story. Our main character is supposed to be a vampire but the only thing that really comes about from this fact in the story is she catches on fire at one point and heals quickly, other than that nothing. It probably would have been better to leave this out all together and have it as a normal human murder fashion mystery rather than a seemingly pathetic vampire that doesn’t really seem to do anything that makes her a kick ass of the night. I feel the series might reveal more, but for this it just wasnt needed to add the paranormal aspect to the story.

Combine all this with a predictable ending, you have a pretty boring story. I guess the second I met a characters sister with the thoughts “The sister did it” before I even knew what it was, that she would be the master behind all the evil. Then sure enough I was right. When I jump to conclusions I would like to be made to feel at least doubtful if not proven wrong by such a judgement.

The Overall Book

I received this book from the publishing company (I think) on NetGalley for my honest review, but If was to go and buy this book, it would only really be for In Still Darkness by Dianne Duvall. It was the only section that made it a worthy read really. Or if you feel the other might actually appeal to you, I would suggest that I buy the actual books from the series rather than this book of previews. Its just not worth it for the whole thing.

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Book Review – Losing It

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Title: Losing It [Losing it 1]

Author: Cora Carmack

Genre: Romance

Length: 184

Rating: 5 Star

Release Date: March 28th 2013

Series Review: 1, 1.5, 233.5

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Description/Synopsis:

Love.Romance. Sex. There’s a first time for everything…
As far as Bliss Edwards can tell, she’s the last virgin standing, certainly amongst her friends. And she’s determined to deal with the ‘problem’ as quickly and simply as possible.
But her plan for a no-strings one night stand turns out to be anything but simple. Especially when she arrives for her first class and recognises her hot new British professor.
She’d left him naked in her bed just 8 hours earlier…

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

I was immensely happy the entire time I was reading this and just could not put it down. With such obvious passion from the author, it was nearly impossible to not fall in love with her brilliantly crafted characters and get swept away as the story unfolds.

I got this book from the author off of NetGalley, and I am so happy that the author allowed me to read it. Most time these days I pick up a romance novel with the mind set of and now for another trashy romance novel… Regardless of whether or not I enjoy the trashy kind, I can’t tell you how refreshing it was to find it was not the case here. Even though the book seems to start off faced paced, it isn’t at all. It moves along at a pace that the book itself, you, and even the main character Bliss, are perfectly happy to move along at.

At first I was sceptical about our main characters name… Bliss… It certainly didn’t really help me not to think of the trashy kind of romance novel to say the least. But as I read on and got to know Bliss through her delightful and just down right funny inner dialogue I found that she had that name because it was her name. She couldn’t have any other. It was a kind of funny ironic fit considering pretty much nothing ever seems to work out quite as ‘blissfully’ as she always hopes.

Throughout the book I was continuing laughing at things that were said/happening. For example~

‘ “I have a cat! I do!” Damn it… why couldn’t I ever remember my imaginary cat’s gender? “Umm… she’s grey and adorable and her name is…” I said the first thing that popped into my head, “Hamlet.”

I was a genius.’

I can’t even to begin to tell you what that line did to me. Just thinking about it makes me want to just go back and read it again so that the warmth I felt the first time around can be felt over again and last just that little bit longer.

Encase it wasn’t obvious enough, I highly recommend this book. If you are a lover of romance novels and want a heart warming and loveable change from the more erotic sex based books, pick up a copy of Losing It.

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Book Review – Unpredictable Webs

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Title: Unpredictable Webs

Author: Darlene Quinn

Genre: Suspense, Thriller

Length: 451

Rating:  3 Star

Release Date: May 1st 2013

Description/Synopsis:

Betrayal, rebellion, jealousy, and a kidnapping gone awry are at the core of this fourth novel in Darlene Quinn’s ensnaring series. Unpredictable Webs picks up the Webs series five years after Twisted Webs.

About to turn sixteen, Marnie Taylor is rebellious–fighting often with her mother, Ashleigh–and jealous of her more even-tempered and popular twin sister, Callie. Lonely, Marnie finds a compassionate listener in Brad, whom she meets online. Spinning a web of lies to throw her parents off, Marnie arranges an in-person meet-up with Brad. But she realizes too late that she has been targeted in a sinister scheme for ransom.

Quinn’s vivid cast of characters returns in this high-tension, stand-alone sequel. Though their actions are plausible, none of them behaves as others might predict in this tale that discloses the darker behaviors people are capable of. Cougar Viviana De Mornay takes Chicago’s fashion world and ”Italian Stallion” Gino Cabello by storm. Tony Wainwright, who has paid his dues for a past crime and appears to have turned his life around, is catapulted to the top of the list of suspects. PI Ross Pocino is on the scene with his surprising insights into criminal behavior, and Paige Toddman’s mother, Helen, seems to grow younger every day. While some mothers can unintentionally do unspeakable harm to their children, Ashleigh’s steel-magnolia efforts to wrest her daughter from her captor redeem the sacredness of that role.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

I received this book from the author off of NetGalley and I had serious issues with rating this book. On some levels I felt it needed to be held around the four star mark, but on other ones I felt it required one.

I don’t know if it was just because of the draft I was given to read, but I found the book to be riddled with structural, grammatical, and perspective errors and found myself placing multiple bookmarks along the way for the more serious ones I came across to point out to the author when I give her my review.

The structure of the book has a new chapter pop up every 4 or so pages on average, and at first I found this really rather distracting and it kind of reminded me of walking though a series of small spider webs, as soon as I removed one web I was thrust into another. At first I thought this was because of the constant perspective changes between the many, many characters but later worked out it was not the case because sometimes the author would give someone a paragraph in the chapter, leave a bigger gap between it and the next, then move onto someone else. Towards the end of the book though I rather started to enjoy this very broken up style of chaptering and only became slightly ‘disturbed’ by it when the chapters were longer than normal. I would not think this kind of writing would appeal to everyone however, and you should probably keep it in mind if you choose to try and read this book once its published.

The introduction of the characters was also a bit of a head spin at first because they all got introduced in rapid succession, and I found I had trouble keeping up with all of them, specially if I stopped reading for a bit and came back or with the lesser main characters. At certain points I found myself thinking Oh please no more characters… But after all this introduction if done in the beginning with pretty much everyone, it slows way down and you only get to meet a couple more people towards the end of the book.

If you ignore of that though the story itself was rather enjoyable. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it was ‘unpredictable,’ but you care about what is happening to each character along the way. The character development I found was enhanced by the multiple character view points and rapid changes, because you got to see which personality traits each character picked up/focussed on with the rest of the characters. Some parts confused me with backstory since I haven’t read the first books in the series, but I got enough that I generally got the gist of what was happening/happened between everyone, and I look forward to going back and reading the first instalments.

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NetGalley – Unpredictable Webs

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I’m currently very excited because I got access to my first NetGalley book Unpredictable Webs by Darlene Quinn. It is also my very first reading of book that hasn’t been published yet! Unpredictable Webs doesn’t come out till the first of May. I can’t wait to to start reading it and give a review, but sadly I don’t know exactly when that will be.

A couple of hours ago I started getting a sharp pain in the back of my neck that is radiating up into my head. I get this every now and then, I don’t know what causes it, lack of water, this horrible that wave that is happening in Melbourne at the moment, or simply how I have been sitting, but if I don’t rest is completely it often gets worst. It often ends with my entire body being sore and me being unable to move for two weeks. This thing that happens make it hard for me to sit up enough to read a hard cover, but the copy of Unpredictable Webs is a  digital one and I find these hard enough to read as it is. Looking at a screen too long hurts my eyes. So, the book has to be put on hold until I can sit up and focus on what I’m actually reading. I don’t want to mark the book low because I wasn’t well and couldn’t focus. 

On the note of digital/hard copies of books, does anyone know if NetGalley only works with digital? The book said it was in hardcover format so I thought that meant I was going to me mailed the book but apparently not? I don’t know so if anyone does let me know :) And does anyone else have the issue with reading on the computer? If you do, do you have the same issue with things like Kindles?

To keep up with my reviews I’m going to slowly read some paperbacks (I’m trying to read number two in the Vampire Kisses series but its getting difficult), so hopefully I will have something up for you guys soon!

 

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Book Review – Vampire Kisses

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Title: Vampire Kisses

Author: Ellen Schreiber

Genre: Vampire Romance, YA

Length: 253

Rating: 2 Star

Description/Synopsis:

The mansion on top of Benson Hill has been empty and boarded up for years. But a new family has moved in. A family that never ventures out during the day. Who are these creepy people — especially the handsome, dark, and elusive Alexander Sterling? Or rather, what are they? Could the town gossip actually be true? Are they vampires?

Raven, who secretly covets a vampire kiss, both at the risk of her own mortality and Alexander’s loving trust, is dying to uncover the truth.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

This book is very simple and in your face to the point where it numbs your brain. Things are laid out in the most cliche and obvious way possible, and you know how the book is going to end right from the start, even though the author spends most the book going ‘no way he’s not a vampire, its just a bunch of rumour’ in an attempt to make it a big ‘ta da he’s a vampire!’ at the end. It doesn’t work however and I mostly just got annoyed at the failed attempt and wished she would have gotten to the obvious point.

Throughout the book we are bombarded with cliches from every angle. The first one which are are reminded of every two pages or so is in the form of the main character. We are presented a teenaged gothic girl named Raven who wears all black and is a goth and has black are and makeup because she is a goth and no one understand because she dresses differently because she is a goth and she is just aching to be a vampire because she is a goth. How much I mentioned the gothic thing in that sentenced is an example of how often we get told shes gothic. Her name was really annoying for me. Out of all the names on the planet, Raven, one used to often (a lot of times as joke) to describe someone who believes in ‘dark magic’ or supernatural creatures you had to choose that one? Though this trend of bad naming is throughout the book and I don’t know if this blunder was intentional or not. They give each other horrible nick names. Raven has a younger brother who she called ‘Nerd Boy.’ As someone who is an older sister to a younger brother with very much up and down moments (though not in such simplistic form and seemingly pointless way that it is presented in a book), a name as simple and just stupid like ‘Nerd Boy’ would never happen, we get more creative than that. There are also a lot of freaks, and monsters thrown around throughout the book as well, but even they seem more creative than some of the others. The biggest cliche of all besides the embodiment that is our main character is the vampires themselves. Would you believe that they all dress in black as well and wear capes?

The romance between Raven and Alexander also happens really quickly. There is a house not far from where Raven lives and she loves it because it abandoned and creep and very goth like, then within 5 pages a family of rumoured vampires move in! After a few quick sightings Raven is invited to enter the house and spend the night with her ‘Gothic Dream Guy’ and they instantly fall in love and understand how the other feels deep within their souls. To me this destroyed any chance of liking the main character, because it seemed as so though she was in love with him before they met purely because she herd he might be a vampire and she wanted to be one too. She might as well be a gold digger to me then, a vampire gold digger. Most the book moves this quickly.

Even though I have said all that, the book did make me laugh at certain points, so on some level I must have related to the characters enough to get a hint of joy or something from things that they are doing/where happening in their lives. I have my fingers crossed that the next two books that I have in this series lesson the cliche and give me some depth to the plot and the characters.