This is the second book in the Alex Craft series and it was even better than the first book. The third book, Grave Memory, is already out. The fourth book, Grave Visions, is expected to release in August 2013.
I listened to this on audiobook again and it was a very well done audiobook. The narrator does an excellent job narrating the different character voices and portrays character emotion well. Definitely a series I will keep listening to.
Alex is called to a scene by the police to investigate a case of left feet. Yep, someone is finding a whole bunch of left feet and Alex senses dark magic attached to them. As Alex starts to investigate this dark magic someone starts to come after her. They are sending evil constructs to attack her and those she cares about. She must figure out this dark magic before it’s too late.
This was an excellent continuation of this series. This book shifts from just dealing with Alex's grave magic to exploring Alex's connection with Fey. As with the last book there is a contained investigation that solved in this book and also a larger story that continues developing from the first book.
I really am enjoying how complex, creative, and interesting this world is. A lot of new excellent characters are added to the story. Additionally both Falin and Death get a lot of page space and we learn more background on both of them. Alex also learns more about her past.
Alex is a fun and complex character to read about. She keeps learning new and interesting things about both her fey and grave powers; yet she is human too. She still needs to eat and sleep to keep functioning. She has a dark sense of humor, which I enjoy.
I am not a huge fan of love triangles, but I can make an exception for Death and Falin. Both of these male leads are just so darn interesting. We learn a lot more about Falin in this book and he is a complex character indeed. Death is still mostly a mystery though, while we learn a bit more about him, most of Death’s character is still shrouded in shadow.
I also enjoy that Alex has a price to pay for using her magic. This reminds me a bit of Devon Monk’s Allie Beckstrom series and I love how having to pay a cost for magic balances out a character’s power.
The main investigation tied up nicely. The book is well written and easy to read. The whole story is very engaging and well-paced; never boring but never frantic either.
Overall I enjoyed this second book even more than Grave Witch. The world is complex and interesting, as are the characters. There are so many things to learn about and read about in this world, I was just absolutely sucked into the story. Highly recommended to fans of urban fantasy; especially to those who enjoy reading about the Fey.
This was an okay novella involving the characters from the first novel in the Half Moon Hallow series (Gigi and Iris). The whole story is told from Gigi's POV.
I got this novella for free from Audible.com last year, so I listened to it on audiobook. The audiobook is well done and uses the same narrator as the other Half Moon Hallow books.
Gigi is home from college for the holidays and dealing with normal things like boyfriend trouble and finding a summer job. Only thing is Gigi is considering taking a job with the vampire council, which her older sister Iris would not be pleased about. Oh and there seems to be a hot blond vampire stalking her for some reason too.
This is a very brief story with some funny parts. There's not a lot resolved here outside of Gigi's relationship with her boyfriend Ben. There is a lot of funny vampire/Christmas stuff in here though.
You are introduced to a sexy blond vampire who is stalking Gigi, well not really introduced but you kind of meet him. None of this is resolved in this short story, so I am wondering if Gigi’s romance will feature in a future Half Moon Hallow book.
I would tentatively recommend if you are a fan of the Half Moon Hallow series. I got this as a free audiobook from Audible.com last year so I can't really complain. If you haven't read other books in this series I would skip it.
This is the first book in the Half Moon Hallow series by Harper. Previous to this I had read the Jane Jameson series by Harper and enjoyed it. I also read Driving Mr. Dead which technically takes place after this book. This was a very typical Molly Harper book, a cute and humorous paranormal romance.
I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook was well done. The narrator has a very snarky voice which fits the story well. Although it’s not the best narration I’ve listened to, it’s decent.
Iris Scanlon runs Half Moon Hallow’s only daytime concierge service for vampires, while also supporting her younger sister Gigi. Things aren’t great but Iris is able to make ends meet. Everything changes when she literally stumbles on Cal, who is poisoned on his kitchen floor. Iris ends up agreeing to hide Cal and getting involved in solving the mystery of who poisoned Cal’s blood supply.
As mentioned above this book is very typical Molly Harper. The story is nothing special, but it is a fun little diversion. I don't read a lot of Molly Harper paranormal romance books because they are all very similar, but when I am in the mood for a fun little paranormal romance they definitely fit the bill.
Iris is a great lead. She is practical and hardworking and is doing her best to raise her younger sister after their parents died. She is very careful to never get involved, or even see, the vampires she does work for. Harboring Cal goes against everything Iris would normally do. However Iris happens to be a bit of a do-gooder and just can’t turn away a sick vampire.
Cal has this whole “I am a mysterious agent for the Council” thing going on and is, of course, very handsome. He has a cutting sense of humor and really endears himself to Iris because of how caring he is about Gigi’s wellbeing.
There is a good mystery here and some sizzling chemistry between Cal and Iris. This book was exactly what I expected. If you read and enjoy Molly Harper books then you should enjoy this one as well.
Overall this was a fun little humorous paranormal romance. There’s not a lot special or outstanding here, but the book is a cute and funny read. If you are looking for a light-hearted paranormal romance this book will definitely fit the bill.
I have pretty much loved everything I have read by Seanan McGuire/Mira Grant. This book was no exception to that. This is such an incredibly creative idea and I really enjoyed it.
I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook was really well done. The narrator does all of the voices really well and also does an excellent job conveying emotion. I really enjoyed listening to it a lot.
Basically the concept behind this book are that fairy tales are real and they are trying to take over our reality. These fairy tales driven by The Narrative create chaos and pain wherever they appear.
Enter Henry and crew, Henry (short for Henrietta)is a leader in an ATI field team. The ATI tries to get to these fairy tale incursions and stop them before than can hurt people. However lately things have been getting out of hand and there are way more incursions than normal. On top of all this Henry is an inactive Snow White, and things are pushing her in a way that just might drive her fairy tale to active status...this is something Henry really wants to avoid, she really doesn't want to end up in a glass coffin.
I loved this book, the premise is awesome and interesting. There are tons of creative fairy tale retellings woven throughout the story. It is fast paced and a very engaging read. Most of the chapters start with a new fairy tale incursion and we hear a bit from the person being affected, then we go back to hearing from Henry and her teammates.
Henry (and all of the side characters) all have a very interesting issue to deal with. The Narrative wants them to do something that will ruin their lives, but they have to resist. Some of the characters, like Henry, have been able to sidestep their fairy tale and live reasonably normal lives. Still everyday Henry struggles with the love of bluebirds, an urge to eat poison apples, and the fear that she will someday cave in to her fairy tale and end up comatose in a glass coffin somewhere.
The way the characters have to constantly struggle to avoid their Fairy Tales is fascinating. They try to make the best of the urges that drive them. For example the almost-wicked stepsister is excellent at sniffing out evil. Still it is a constant struggle for them to use their strength...but not get too close to their Fairy Tale.
The story ends well and has an incredibly well done plot. I just really enjoyed this book.
Overall another outstanding and very creative novel from Seanan McGuire. If you love urban fantasy and fairy tales I would recommend reading this. If you are a McGuire fan definitely pick this up. I loved it and really hope they are future books featuring Henry and her crew.
This is the first book in the Magnificent Devices series. Currently there are at least eight book planned for this series, with the eighth one releasing later in 2014. I really enjoyed this steampunk young adult read set in Victorian London.
I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook was very very well done. I highly recommend this on audiobook.
Claire Trevelyan is the daughter of a Viscount and her mother is trying her best to get her married off to a fine gentleman. However Claire would rather go to University and spend time talking to Wits about steam engines. Disaster strikes when Claire’s father goes bankrupt and dies. Claire’s mother and brother are forced to flee the city to escape angry investors, while Claire is left to deal with tying things up in the city. Claire sees this as an opportunity to take control of her own life.
There are a ton of interesting steampunk elements in this novel that I really enjoyed. This is a story that isn’t all that original; a young woman prefers science/knowledge over marriage and decides to go her own way...but it is the type of story I never tire of reading.
Claire is a wonderful balance of a proper lady and a young woman who wants to make her own way. She is at times pretty and soft, but also extremely determined, smart and stubborn. She’s one of my favorite types of heroines to read about. I love how she makes a family for herself and finds a place to call home even in the worst of situations.
This book mainly follows Claire as she deals with the aftermath of her family disaster and loss of place in society and starts to find her own way in life. I loved the steampunk elements, found Claire’s story to be very engaging, and really enjoyed the story overall.
There is a somewhat complicated love interest here. A gentleman who was interested in Lady Claire ends up being the same man who is financing the research of Andrew Malvern, a young inventor who wants to hire Claire as his secretary. It makes for a bit of a love triangle of sorts, although I will say the story definitely isn’t driven by romance there is some romance subtly woven in.
The story ties up nicely, but there are definitely more elements of the story that still need to be resolved.
Overall I really enjoyed this story and thought it was a very fun read. It is not a story that is all that creative, but it is fun and well done. If you enjoy steampunk novels I definitely recommend this book. The story is bit of a Pride and Prejudice meets steampunk kind of read. I definitely plan on listening to more audio books in the Magnificent Devices series!
This is the first book in the Amber House trilogy. It ended up being kind of a creepy, gothic mystery with some paranormal elements. It was a decent story and I enjoyed watching the mystery unravel.
I listened to this on audiobook and I think I would have been better off reading it in paper format. While the narrator does a good job with character voices and emotion, I really thought that her voice didn’t fit the tone of the story very well. The narrator’s voice was too perky for such a dark story and it kind of distracted from the mood of the story. I wouldn’t really recommend listening to this on audiobook.
Sarah Parsons travels to the mysterious Amber House with her family after her grandmother passes away. Sarah has never been to Amber House and finds out she can see images from the past in the houses halls. In the course of this she ends up unraveling some dark secrets in Amber House’s past.
This was a well done gothic read about a girl unraveling the history of both her family and Amber House. Sarah can see images from the past and has to use these images to put together all of the pieces of the house's sordid history. The son their housekeeper, Jackson, also has some special abilities.
I enjoyed how the mystery was woven together, but just had some trouble with the imagery and the point of the whole story. There are a lot of heavy gothic overtones involving madness, death, secret passages, and dark deadly spiders. The story does take place in modern times but we spend a lot of time looking into the past with Sarah.
Sarah ends up involved in a bit of a love triangle (which I dislike). She spends a lot of time with Jackson but is dissuaded from spending time with him because he’s not a suitable match (very backwards thinking for a novel set in modern times). She is also wooed by the nearly perfect Richard who is a Senator’s son and fabulous at everything.
There is a lot of intrigue in the story, a lot of people lying and doing things to get ahead of other people. Pretty much a lot of what is typically thought of as high society maneuvering for power.
The story takes a strange twist at the end that had me rolling my eyes a bit. It was just so contrived. I actually read through it a couple times because I wanted to make sure that what I thought was happening was actually happening. I didn't really enjoy the ending that much.
Overall a decent story. The story was an interesting blend of gothic elements, time travel, ghosts, and paranormal elements. I honestly didn’t find the characters all that engaging. I also wasn’t ever really totally drawn into the story. Still it was a well enough written book that this would have been a 4 star rating if not for the horribly contrived ending. The ending is an awful cliffhanger and just sooooo forced. I won’t be reading any more books in this series. However if you are a big fan of ghost stories or gothic reads you might enjoy this.
I have had this book forever to read and just finally got around to listening to it on audiobook. This is the first of three books (so far) in the Skindancer series. It was a well done urban fantasy that I enjoyed.
As mentioned above I listened to this on audiobook and it was very well done. The narrator does an excellent job with character voices and conveys emotion well. It’s definitely one I would recommend listening to if you like audiobooks.
Dakota Frost is a magical tattoo artist and a Skindancer. She gets called into a case as a consultant to consult on a series of serial murders involving magical tattoos. Right around the same time a werewolf commissions her to make him a special binding tattoo to help contain his were side. The two separate events start to converge and Dakota begins to find she may have bitten off more than she can handle.
This was a well done urban fantasy. I really loved the magical tattoo system here, it is very unique. I also loved the idea behind Skindancers. Dakota is still just starting to understand her power as a Skindancer. Still I loved what we have seen so far. Dakota can do some pretty unique things as a Skindancer, but she is not invincible and has to work with her limitations too.
As with many urban fantasies there are werewolves, shapeshifters, and vampires. Dakota also gets involved with taking care of a young Beastkin, this reminded me a bit of the Beastkin in the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews.
The description throughout this book was very well done. The imagery behind the Skindancing scenes made them easy to picture and were very magical to read about. Some of these scenes really come alive for the reader.
Outside of the awesome tattoo magic, there wasn't a ton here to set this book apart from other urban fantasies out there, but I did enjoy it and thought it was a fun read. The story stops at a good place and doesn’t leave you with any major cliffhangers.
Overall I thought this was a solid urban fantasy and a fun read. I will definitely be checking out the second book in the series. I would recommend to those who love urban fantasy, especially to those who are interested in unique magic systems.
I got this book to read because I loved Kirby’s Clockwork Three novel. This book was okay, it’s a bit slow. I did enjoy the mystery and all of the Norse mythology woven throughout though.
I listened to this on audiobook and the narrator did an excellent job. The narrator did a great job capturing emotions and giving all of the characters distinct voices.
Solveig and her siblings have been sent to winter in a hidden fortress while they wait for their father to finish up a war. Solveig’s father has sent them there to keep them safe and he sends a group of Berserker warriors to help safeguard the fortress. However as winter closes in the fjord ices over and no one can go into or out of the area. The group is strapped for food and desperate for news outside the fortress. Then bad things start happening, things that could threaten their survival and are most likely caused by treachery within the group.
This story is a very slow moving mystery. Most of the story revolves around the characters trying to keep themselves busy and survive a long winter in this abandoned fortress. There are long stretches of boredom broken up by acts of treachery that threaten the survival of those in the fortress.
Solveig is the youngest daughter and not pretty, she has been told she is worthless for a long time. However, Solveig shows promise in her excellent story telling and her father’s skald, Ulrich, starts to train her. It was wonderful to watch Solveig realize her own worth and gain confidence in herself as the story progresses.
Since Solveig is an excellent storyteller much of this book is stories within a larger story. Solveig tells stories about growing up and about other people who are wintering with her in the fortress. We get to learn more about the surrounding characters through these tales. All of the book is told from Solveig’s point of view, so it is only through her stories of others that we really start to see into the other characters’ minds.
Both Ulrich and Solveig tell stories about Norse mythology and about the customs of the time. These were fascinating and fun to listen to. They were especially well done since this was in audiobook format and I was listening to the stories just like the other characters.
The mystery that unravels is a bit predictable and very slow in its unveiling. I actually thought Solveig’s training as a Skald was more interesting than the surrounding mystery.
The writing is very well done. The descriptions are beautiful and lyrical. The settings throughout really come alive for the reader and I never had any trouble picturing the harsh and cold surroundings.
The story wraps up well and there is a very nice afterward explaining how Kirby did his research into Norse mythology. There is also an epic poem included that was seen as training for skald’s back in that time period.
Overall a well done historical fantasy. This book is mostly about stories, with Solveig’s coming of age story, and a bit of a mystery involving treason woven in between them. It moves very slowly and very deliberately. This is definitely not a fast-paced or action-packed read. However, I did really enjoy the stories throughout and the Norse mythology. I also really enjoyed watching Solveig grow in confidence and gain some self-worth. Recommended to those who don’t mind a deliberate read and are interesting in Viking/Norse mythology.
I absolutely adored this middle grade fantasy by Prineas. I also loved Prineas's Winterling series which is why I originally picked this book up. This book was even better than the Winterling books, it was so magical and just so much fun to read.
I listened to The Magic Thief on Audiobook and it was very very well done. The narrator sounded exactly like I imagined Conn would sound. The narrator did all the other character voices really well too. I would highly recommend listening to this on audiobook if you enjoy audiobooks. I really think the absolutely wonderful narration was part of the reason I loved this book so much.
Conn is a master lockpick and thief whose main concerns are dodging the ruler of Twilight, Crow, and just trying to survive day to day. That is until he picks the wrong pocket, the pocket of an old wizard named Nevery. Conn accidentally stole Nevery’s magicalicus (a magic stone that should kill anyone who touches it outside of the wizard it belongs to). However the magicalicus didn’t kill Conn and Nevery decides to investigate this further and take Conn on as his apprentice. Nevery is in Wellmet to figure out why the amount of magic in the town is declining.
The story starts at a fast pace and never slows down. It's very entertaining, well written and well paced.
A big part of what makes this novel wonderful is the plucky protagonist Conn who is just such an optimist. Even when faced with hard situations he just picks himself up and soldiers through. I loved his candid way of thinking and talking and the way he just assumes that most people are good people (despite his background).
I also loved the magic throughout and the mystery behind why magic was leaving the city. There are also a lot of interesting steampunk devices throughout and there is a lot of magic combined with science kind of explanations that I enjoyed.
This was just a super fun read that just made me feel at happy while I was reading it. Nothing super horrible happens, but there's a good mystery, lots of fun, and lots of quirky characters (who at first seem gruff) but end up really caring about each other.
Overall I just loved this book to pieces and will definitely be reading the next in the series! I highly recommend this novel to fantasy readers of all ages. It is one I will definitely be reading with my seven year old son. The story isn’t super complicated but the magic system and mystery are interesting enough that I think that the story would hold the interest of adult readers as well.
This is a story about a young girl who gets Written In (WI) to the Land of Story. There she has to figure out why she's a WI and who wrote her in.
This is really just the first half of the story. Nothing is resolved and the book ends right in the middle of the story.
The above being said I thought this book was decent but not great. I really enjoyed the idea of characters being written in (it was a like a simplified version of the Thursday Next series). I also enjoyed the idea of characters being type-cast and trained to be the sorts of characters they are assigned to be.
I thought our heroine was extremely abrasive and obnoxious. I also thought the initial description of her as a quiet loner did not at all fit how she acted in Story. There were a few contradictions like that throughout the story.
I also just got kind of bored with it all about halfway through. In the end, even though it ends mid-story, I really wasn't all that curious about what will happen to these characters. As a result, I probably won't read Story's End which ties up this duology.
This is the fifth book in the Bloodlines series. There are six books planned in this series. The sixth book, The Ruby Circle, is scheduled for a February 2015 release. This was probably the most painful and frustrating book of this series, but it was also one of the best.
I listened to this on audiobook, and like all the audiobooks in this series, it was incredibly well done. This is definitely one of those series I recommend listening to on audiobook if you enjoy audiobooks.
Sydney has been sent to Re-education at a secret Alchemist facility. There she is subjected to torture and brain-washing. But Sydney has become a lot stronger throughout this series and even though she is terrified, she works to escape. Adrian has sunk into a deep Spirit-induced depression after his many attempts to reach Sydney through dream walking have failed. Still he will not give up trying to find Sydney no matter what the cost.
This is probably the most painful book of this series so far. However, it ended up being a very good book even if there were times when I absolutely wanted to strangle Adrian.
This book is one of those books where the characters are put through a ton of painful experiences. This book definitely showcases how much Sydney has grown and changed since the first book. You can tell Adrian has grown as well, but there were still parts of the book where I wanted to smack Adrian and tell him to get his moody depressed butt in gear.
We learn a ton about re-education and more about the internal working of the Alchemists. We also get to see Sydney wield some serious magic and are given a glimpse into how incredibly powerful Adrian's Spirit Magic is.
There are a ton of new characters, pretty much everyone Sydney meets in Re-education is new to the story. They were all well done and enjoyable to read about. We also get to read about a lot of characters we have meet throughout the series. Rose is in the story a bit and Lissa as well. We finally meet Adrian’s mom and spend time with his dad too.
I was disappointed that the story ends on yet another awful cliffhanger. However, that just seems to be how Mead likes to write her books. So you have been warned. I was also a bit disappointed that this book is almost entirely about Sydney and Adrian’s drama; any other storylines or issues have taken a backseat to this drama.
Overall this was an excellent continuation of the series and I am dying to see what happens next. Although this is one of the most painful books in this series, it was also a really darn good one. This whole series, along with the Vampire Academy series, is strongly recommended if you enjoy reading paranormal YA books.
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