I wanted to like this more. I really, really did. But at most, I could give it 3.5 stars.
At the core of the story is down on his luck wizard, Harry Dresden. He did something naughty in the past that has him on the wizard version of probation. He even has a magical probation officer following him around. To make ends meet (which he barely does), he's on retainer with the police as a consultant and at the start of Storm Front, he gets dragged into a murder investigation at the same time as a cagey woman shows up at his doorstep wanting him to help find her husband (who may or may not have been playing with magic.)
Harry seemed a likable enough character but I wasn't drawn to him. I don't know if it was James Marsters reading of him or what, but he just sounded bored to me all of the time. That put upon voice that was just resigned with everything, like "This again? Okay, whatever." Even parts of the action (mostly earlier in the book) were read with that same resigned voice and it didn't exactly draw me in.
Harry also didn't seem like much of a wizard. He kept getting jumped. He was constantly scared though apparently, he's very good at not showing it (eye rolling) and he seemed to get out of most situations more by luck than skill. There were a few bright spots when suddenly he would get angry and do something awesome, but these points were a bit far and few between in the character building sections.
Morale of this review - I didn't fall in love with our hero, Harry, and that makes it hard to fall in love with the books. I hear the series gets better later in the series and I'll probably read another book or two...eventually.
This book had me...right up until the end. I was on the verge of giving it 4, bordering on 4.5 stars and then it took a turn that left me groaning with annoyance.
The book was very good up until that point. In my opinion, better than the first. There was more detail, more action, more intrigue. The book starts out with Day and June fresh from their escape and on their way to Vegas, where they hope to find help in the Patriot rebels. From there, they are thrown into a plot to assassinate the new elector. They are split apart, reunited, exposed to harsh truths about both sides and forced to pick their path knowing that nothing will be as they hoped/expected. I kept expecting them to get split apart - divided by two causes and too many lies. But always Lu brought them back together with logic and sound reason that made sense considering these two characters who she has built with solid heads on their shoulders, even despite their ages. It was really good. But then, at the very last minute, she devolved into the silly YA nonsense that makes me want to stop reading YA entirely. Building false drama by making her characters become suddenly dumb when in the rest of the book, they were mature beyond their years and saw past all the lies and BS. It kind of ruined it for me.
I'll land on 3.5 stars for this one and I'm curious if I'll still be interested in book #3 when it comes out in 2014 (wtf!) If it was out already, I would read it. But I wonder if in a year (or more) from now, I will remember any of the good. Or if all I will remember is the bad taste that the ending of this one left in my mouth and decide to skip it
This is just a good, classic, satisfying romance. I loved the dark, mysterious leading man and the spunky, strong willed, funny leading lady. I wanted to slap her brother but besides him all of the characters were extremely likable and I definitely want to see what happens with the rest of the Hathaways.
Another solid book in a very entertaining series. This book picked up right where the last book left off and just like the first, I found it hard to put it down. Avry had a few dumb moments in this book that made her character a little uneven. She would seem so strong and capable and smart in some ways and then incredibly naive and slow to pick up on clues that seemed super obvious. But overall, it was a good book. And I'm looking forward to reading the third book when it comes out. Sucks to have to wait until the Fall!!!
I don't know if I liked it as much as I like Poison Study, but I seriously could not put this book down. There were points that got a little convoluted but I was so swept up in the rest of it that I didn't let it bother me much. Just when I thought it was going to end and be wrapped up with a neat little bow, the book would take you on another twist and it constantly kept me wondering how the hell is Avery going to get out of this or that fix. Definitely picking up the next book ASAP.
I am clearly in the minority here based on the average review for this book on Goodreads, but I was bored.
I wasn't expecting to be blown away based on my impressions from the first book. The first book had this slow, angsty build, but about halfway through, it turned a corner and suddenly I was with Madrigal and Akiva and nothing else that came before mattered. So I wasn't surprised that in this installment, we had another slow start. But I was expecting it to pick up at some point, and for me, it never really did. Sure there was some action, but it was in brief, unsatisfying spurts and immediately after it was over, the tone would temper again and it was like nothing ever happened. By the end, I just wanted them to get on with it.
That being said, I still plan to pick up the final book in the series (or at least, I hope it'll be the final book in the series) when it comes out. The way this book ended, I think that the final book has real potential for a lot of action. I just hope Taylor doesn't drag it out like she did in this book. Hopefully this book was the long build-up to a whole lot of something in book 3
My impressions of this book are...mixed, much like my feelings for it's predecessor, The Passage. The Passage was long and uneven. It was basically two books melded into one. When I saw that this book was half the page count, I was hopeful that Cronin had figured out how to be more succinct than he was in his previous effort, but instead, it felt like he just eliminated whole chapters. Necessary chapters.
I spent a good chunk of the book feeling confused. Like I missed something. Listening to it on audiobook, I began to wonder if I'd accidentally fast forwarded through some relevant chapters. But no, Cronin just didn't feel the need to elaborate, only elude to certain things. Big things that left you wondering.
This book went in a completely different direction than expected from the ending of the first. All of the characters from the first book are scattered to the wind, but there is no real explanation as to how or why or what has happened to them in the interim. He just starts the book as if there is an expectation that you already know what happened. And then he brings them all back together and it's like, "Wait, what?" But you just have to go with it and pretend like you get it because he's not going to explain it for you.
He also introduces a whole host of new characters and then does something with some of them and nothing at all with the rest of them. First, they are there and then, he moves onto something else and never mentions them again. Presumably, this will all be fleshed out in the final installment of the series (I assume), but it's just a really, really bizarre way to write a trilogy.
The story overall was okay. I really waffled between giving this two stars and three. In the end, I decided on three because it wasn't awful, but because of all of the switching back in time and between characters and with the utter lack of explanation, it was just confusing.
Despite it all, I'll probably read the last book. Just to see what happens to Amy and Peter. He left them in a really weird spot and I'm curious how it will end. But I have the distinct impression that when it's all said and done, I will think that this series has been vastly overrated.
I think I need a break from these books. Though I liked the story, Cole's formula is starting to wear on me a little bit. I'll come back to them eventually because they are enthralling reads, but for now, I think it's time to move onto something else.
3.5 stars for this one as well. I liked Kaderin more than Emmaline, but then not quite as much as Myst. I also liked that this one was a little bit more action oriented with the Hie (an immortal version of the Amazing Race) as the challenge, sending them around the world on a violent scavenger hunt. When Sebastian wasn't being Mr. Wimpy, then he was pretty awesome leading man. Though at times, it kind of felt like reading about the two class nerds who got hot and then fell in love with each other. Love Potion #9...anyone??? anyone???
I give this one 3.5 stars. I really liked Lachlain's character. I particularly liked the audiobook's narrator and his Scottish brogue. I haven't listened to many romances on audiobook, but the ones I have listened to have been read by women from a mostly female point of view. It was refreshing to hear this one from a man's point of view, but his reading of the women's voices was a bit grating. Particular, Emmaline.
I was pretty much annoyed with her character most of the book (and it had nothing to do with his reading of her.) In the beginning her timidity was understandable. I mean, I would be scared too if I was hunted down on the street by some unholy beast. But then she continued to be a complete and utter wuss for about 75% of the book, continuously flip flopping and whining, even despite her growing attraction to our leading man, Lachlain.
Many times throughout the book, Cole seemed to be drawing out the drama unnecessarily and the book was very uneven to say the least. It starts out with a bang, drawing you in as Lachlain escapes his 150 year imprisonment by tearing off his own leg and then limps (pun very much intended) along as we learn more about Emma and all of her hang-ups and Lachlain learns about the modern world. And along the way, the book teases you with a lot of "almosts" and "maybes" before suddenly taking a complete 180 where Emma accepts everything, barely giving another thought to all of her previous waffling.
In the end, it wasn't a bad read. Overall, I would say I enjoyed it. But it wasn't a great read when it could have been. But I will admit that despite my annoyance with Emmaline, I'm tempted to try another in the series. It doesn't seem as if the other heroines of Cole's paranormal world are quite as sissified as annoying Emmaline, and for me, a strong and consistent heroine just might be the key to unlocking the full potential of these books.
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