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Madeline Schatzberg

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  • Hero Forged

  • Ethereal Earth, Book 1
  • By: Josh Erikson
  • Narrated by: Josh Erikson
  • Length: 14 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 982
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 927
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 923

Gabriel Delling might call himself a professional con artist, but when walking superstitions start trying to bite his face off, his charm is shockingly unhelpful. It turns out living nightmares almost never appreciate a good joke. Together with a succubus who insists on constantly saving his life, Gabe desperately tries to survive a new reality that suddenly features demons, legends, and a giant locust named Dale - all of whom pretty much hate his guts. And when an ancient horror comes hunting for a spirit locked in his head, Gabe finds himself faced with the excruciating choice between death...or becoming some kind of freaking hero.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Surprisingly Good

  • By Steelgator on 07-21-18

Boring lists of stats

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-06-18

This book was boring. I should have known what I was getting into by the description, but I still feel like a book taking place within an RPG could have been done in a much more interesting way. Although I would have liked to play the game, I did not want to listen to a character recount every item in his inventory and all of his stats every fifteen minutes. The main character and his friends were also barely fleshed out at all.

Fair warning, I did not finish this book. It was super boring. But it did make me want to go play an actual RPG, which I did. I enjoyed that much more.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman

  • The Extraordinary Adventures of the Athena Club, Book 2
  • By: Theodora Goss
  • Narrated by: Kate Reading
  • Length: 24 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 509
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 476
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 476

Mary Jekyll’s life has been peaceful since she helped Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson solve the Whitechapel Murders. Beatrice Rappaccini, Catherine Moreau, Justine Frankenstein, and Mary’s sister Diana Hyde have settled into the Jekyll household in London, and although they sometimes quarrel, they can always rely on Mrs. Poole. But when Mary receives a telegram that Lucinda Van Helsing has been kidnapped, the Athena Club must travel to the Austro-Hungarian Empire to rescue yet another young woman who has been subjected to horrific experimentation.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Little Women meets Anno Dracula

  • By Stefan Filipovits on 07-13-18

Second book better than the first

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-06-18

I really like this series. The relationship between the girls is very interesting, although I find Diana annoying (but she is supposed to be). Although the editorializing from the Athena club irked me at first, I grew to like it.

This is a very feminist book. Almost all of the main characters, especially the good ones, are women. It more than passes the Bechdel test. I think it can get a little preachy, but is good at showing feminism as a conversation, rather than a specific way to behave.

My main complaint is that sometimes Mary can be kind of stupid, and she is supposed to be so smart. There are occasionally clues that are obvious to the reader, but Mary is confused. Also, the mystery is fairly simple and easy to figure out. As there are no events or people mentioned with any detail that do not reappear.

Overall I recommend this.

  • Saints Astray

  • Santa Olivia, Book 2
  • By: Jacqueline Carey
  • Narrated by: Susan Ericksen
  • Length: 14 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 114
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 109
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 108

Fellow orphans, amateur vigilantes, and members of the Santitos, Loup Garron-the fugitive daughter of a genetically engineered "wolf-man"-and Pilar Ecchevarria spent their entire lives under military occupation in a cordoned off Texas no-man's-land that used to be called Santa Olivia, now known as Outpost 12.But now they're free, and they want to help the rest of the Santitos escape.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • LOVED IT!

  • By darswords on 12-03-11

Too much relationship.

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-18-15

I've read a ton of Jacqueline Carey, and I usually love her. This was my least favorite. The main relationship was so obnoxious. I don't mind a lot of romantic love being in my novels, I am reading Carey, after all. However, Pilar and Loup's relationship dominated this book so much but there was basically no conflict at all. It is boring to read about how much characters love each other. I would have preferred a separation, or just not had so much information about their baby talk in the evenings. It didn't add anything to the story and was boring.

  • The Name of the Wind

  • Kingkiller Chronicles, Book 1
  • By: Patrick Rothfuss
  • Narrated by: Nick Podehl
  • Length: 27 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 61,398
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 55,822
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 55,909

This is a tale of sorrow, a tale of survival, a tale of one man's search for meaning in his universe, and how that search, and the indomitable will that drove it, gave birth to a legend.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow!

  • By Joanna on 05-10-11

A little underwhelming, but wait for book two.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-13-15

Any additional comments?

I was a little underwhelmed by this book although I had heard great things about it. I found Kvothe obnoxious. I thought the descriptions of women were two dimensional. Every woman was beautiful and in love with Kvothe, but he didn't realize. However, I think, after reading the second book, that these "faults" are part of the slow burn of this amazing author and series. Kvothe is an obnoxious, girl crazy teenaged boy. But the story grows up as he does.

This is not a series packed with non-stop action, but I think it is growing into the best fantasy series in progress now.

TL;DR: Have patience, and give the next book a try even if you aren't blown away by this one. This book has faults, but it's all worth it for the sequel.