Sunday, July 27

Book Review: From Dead to Worse

Title: From Dead to Worse

Author: Charlaine Harris

Pages: EBook 243

Summary: After the natural disaster of Hurricane Katrina and the manmade explosion at the vampire summit, everyone—human and otherwise—is stressed, including Louisiana cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse, who is trying to cope with the fact that her boyfriend, Quinn, has gone missing.

It’s clear that things are changing—whether the weres and vamps of her corner of Louisiana like it or not. And Sookie—Friend to the Pack and blood-bonded to Eric Northman, leader of the local vampire community—is caught up in the changes.

In the ensuing battles, Sookie faces danger, death, and once more, betrayal by someone she loves. And when the fur has finished flying and the cold blood finished flowing, her world will be forever altered.

My Rating: 7/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: While I enjoyed the book, it wasn't my favourite of the series, in fact compared to some of the others it was a little bland. Still an enjoyable book, not as good as the others.

I did find the characters are becoming very fleshed out. Sookie is becoming a more likeable character as time goes on and there are a few supporting characters I've come to enjoy, I just wish they would have more time in the books, like Sam. I want to learn more about him and find out more about who he is. Although, perhaps that's why I like him so much, the unknown.

There were some parts of the book I found to drag a bit and as I said above, I didn't enjoy this one as much as the others. I think it's setting up for future plots, but this one just didn't have the same thrill as others.

In the end, a good read but not my favourite of the series.

Would I recommend it to read: If you plan on reading the rest of the series, then yes. This one wasn't my favourite of the series, although it does set up a lot of future plot lines, that look like some interesting events are coming.

What to read next: Books 9 - 13 of the series, Patricia Briggs, Kelley Armstrong

Challenges: 100 Books Challenge, 2014 Category Challenge, EBook Challenge, Finish That Series Challenge

Book Review: The Enchanted

Title: The Enchanted

Author: Rene Denfeld

Pages: EBook 144

Summary: The enchanted place is an ancient stone prison, viewed through the eyes of a death row inmate who finds escape in his books and in re-imagining life around him, weaving a fantastical story of the people he observes and the world he inhabits. Fearful and reclusive, he senses what others cannot. Though bars confine him every minute of every day, he marries magical visions of golden horses running beneath the prison, heat flowing like molten metal from their backs, with the devastating violence of prison life. Two outsiders venture here: a fallen priest, and the Lady, an investigator who searches for buried information from prisoners' pasts that can save those soon-to-be-executed. Digging into the background of a killer named York, she uncovers wrenching truths that challenge familiar notions of victim and criminal, innocence and guilt, honor and corruption-ultimately revealing shocking secrets of her own.

My Rating: 8/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: This was a quick, but very engrossing read, which I enjoyed a lot. 

There are so many elements to this book, that drew me in, it's hard to find a place to start. First of all, having almost all of the characters nameless also added something to the book, which ended up being a great thing, because despite only knowing pieces of information about a character, I still felt connected to them, and it had a lot of character driven parts.

The story itself is harsh, focusing on the horrible crimes of the prisoners, and some focus on their lives, which in some cases, was just as horrific as the crimes the prisoners committed, but the author balances that out, with some extraordinary and beautiful writing - the writing alone made me want to race through the book, but having the characters created they way they were and an incredible story, it made for an excellent reading experience.

Would I recommend it to read: I would, it was an incredible story and I think a lot of readers would enjoy the book, no matter their reading tastes.

What to read next: I've been thinking about this for some time, and I'm still clueless on what to read next.

Challenges: 100 Books Challenge, 2014 Category Challenge, EBook Challenge, New Author Challenge

Book Review: Cold Hearts

Title: Cold Hearts

Author: Gunner Staalesen

Pages: 300

Summary: On a frosty January day in Bergen, Private Detective Varg Veum is visited by a prostitute. Her friend Margrethe has disappeared and hasn't been seen for days. Before her disappearance, something had unsettled her: she'd turned away a customer and returned to the neighbourhood in terror. Shortly after taking the case, Veum is confronted with a brutal, uneasy reality. He soon finds the first body - and it won't be the last either. His investigation leads him into a dark subculture where corrupted idealism has had deadly consequences.

My Rating: 7.25/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: I enjoyed this one a lot more than I thought I would, and the book had a lot more substance to it than I thought it would be.

The author did a good job at creating the characters in the book, this was another book where I didn't have a favourite character, but I did find they were characters that were developed. The story itself was also well told and had a lot more depth to it than I thought it would. It's not at all what I'd expected from a crime thriller, and at times it was rather gripping. Although I did find the book to drag in some parts and I think that this being part of a series, it's yet another cases where I'm missing pieces of information on characters backgrounds along with pieces from the plot. It's likely I'd have enjoyed the book more if I've read some of the earlier books.

Although I liked this book, I'm not sure I'd go back from to the start of the series. While it was a good summer read, the characters didn't snag me enough to want to read more about them.

Would I recommend it to read: If you enjoy crime fiction, than this would be an excellent choice. Although, I suggest starting at the beginning of the series.

What to read next: Ian Rankin would be a good place to start.

Challenges: 100 Books Challenge, 2014 Category Challenge, Mount TBR Challenge, New Author Challenge

Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher.

Book Review: Fifth Business

Title: Fifth Business

Author: Robertson Davies

Pages: 257

Summary: Ramsay is a man who has returned from the battle-grave at Passchendaele in World War I.As he tells his story, it begins to seem that from boyhood, he has exerted a perhaps mystical, perhaps pernicious, influence on those around him. His apparently innocent involvement in events as the throwing of a snowball or the teaching of card tricks to a small boy in the end prove neither innocent nor innocuous.

My Rating: 7.5/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: The book grabbed my interest from the start, mainly due to the writing, and while the story didn't always engage me, the book has me wanting more from the author, and it's very likely I will read the rest of this series in the near future.

What I liked best about the book was the writing, it hooked me in from the start and kept me reading to the end. I will definitely read the rest of the books in the trilogy and probably everything else by the author, as the writing and storytelling was just that good.

The only snag was this particular book lost me part of the way through. While I enjoyed the story, I did feel that there were parts that dragged on and I was hoping the story would move faster. I also found there wasn't a character I really enjoyed, I didn't dislike any of them, but there wasn't a character that stuck with me. With that being said, the characters were very complex and full of depth, they just didn't jump out at me, which usually happens when the author has similar style to Davies. Overall, it was a good book, and one that is well worth reading, I will definitely be adding the author to the top of my CanLit reading list.

Would I recommend it to read: I would, the writing alone makes me want to shove the books into every canlit fans hands.

What to read next: The rest of Deptford Trilogy

Challenges: 100 Books Challenge, 2014 Category Challenge, 7th Annual Canadian Book Challenge, Mount TBR Challenge, New Author Challenge