Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Review: Drinking: A Love Story

Drinking: A Love Story Drinking: A Love Story by Caroline Knapp
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I love reading books about addiction. It reminds me not to fly too close to the sun. Anorexia, alcohol, drugs, really anyone's dance with the dark side. Drinking: A Love Story, has been on my TBR shelf for years and I finally picked up a copy to read.

Caroline Knapp's story is a familiar one. She was a high-functioning alcoholic who finally decided where her elevator stopped before crashing to the ground. From the outside, many people thought she was fine. Her family and friends knew she needed help, but help only comes when you are ready to accept it. Knapp doesn't have major screw-ups that often lead people to their rock bottom, but she was smart enough to know when to get help, and she's stayed on track. Kudos to her for finding the strength to do it.

Disjointed at times, Knapp keeps the reader at arm's length and you don't necessarily feel her pain like you do in other memoirs. Read it if you enjoy a successful journey to recovery. Three stars.

View all my reviews

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Review: The Unbreakable Spell

26 The Unbreakable Spell (The Eternal Collection)The Unbreakable Spell by Barbara Cartland

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Exactly what you'd expect from Dame Barbara. This heroine was slightly smarter than the others, though. I'll give her points for brains and bravery, bringing this from one star to two.

A predictable plot line, as always. Arranged marriage, an orphaned beauty, cruelly mistreated but with a heart of gold. This one has the added fun of a weird sixth sense thread that was quickly dropped and insta-love. Barbara, your plots were ridiculous but apparently so am I for continuing to read them.

Tune in next time, where I will be reviewing Dame Barbara on audio. Can't wait to hear how bad it turns out!

View all my reviews

Friday, June 24, 2016

Review: Why Didn't They Ask Evans?

Why Didn't They Ask Evans? Why Didn't They Ask Evans? by Agatha Christie
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Not my favorite Christie, but still an interesting story. I thought I had puzzled it out a couple of times, but she gave the classic twists and turns you expect so I was partially correct, but way off base on the other parts.

Bobby Jones stumbles upon a gravely injured man who utters a cryptic question as his last words: "Why didn't they ask Evans?" And we are off to the races. Bobby and his childhood friend, Lady Francis, investigate and cook up the most ridiculous plans, putting themselves in danger literally the entire book. But it's all good in the end, and I quite enjoyed the wrap-up.

Not her best, but even a mediocre Christie is better than most others. Enjoy!

View all my reviews

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Review: The Clan of the Cave Bear

The Clan of the Cave Bear The Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Loved this book. So glad I finally read it.

We begin our story with Ayla. Orphaned as a child, she survives until she stumbles across the clan of the cave bear people. It's gripping and heartbreaking as she grows up and struggles to find acceptance in her new family. It hit the right mix of prehistoric life, family drama, and I really can't wait to read book 2.

View all my reviews

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Review: Forever

Forever Forever by Maggie Stiefvater
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

We reach the end of our wolves of Mercy Falls saga, and not a moment too soon. Things are mostly tied up in a bow at the end.

It somehow became less about Grace and Sam, and more about Cole and Isabel. Which wasn't necessarily a bad thing, but it felt like the author decided the side characters were more interesting than the main ones. But overall it was a fine young adult paranormal series, which is what it was meant to be. Three stars.

View all my reviews

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Review: A Call of Love

101. a Call of Love A Call of Love by Barbara Cartland
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Another stinker by Barbara Cartland. I--must enjoy--the torture because--I--keep reading them! Her stuttering heroines make my brain bleed. I read them because they remind me of growing up. My mom had all of them and they were my first romance novels, and I still love historical romances because of these books. My 12-year-old self devoured them. However, this storyline was a stinker. Dumb girl, sexist men, and a ridiculous kidnapping plot. D- for this one.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Review: Master of Rosewood

Master of Rosewood Master of Rosewood by Karl Tunberg
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

This is quite possibly the worst book every written. A real WTF from start to finish.

I can't even explain why I kept reading this trash, except I couldn't believe my eyes. Good lord, it is ridiculous. The best thing I can say about this book is it seems to be out of print. Just stay away. This book is offensive and terribly written. Plantation porn at its worst.

Zero stars for this one.

View all my reviews

Monday, June 13, 2016

Review: The Donor, Parts 1-3

The Donor, Parts 1-3 The Donor, Parts 1-3 by Nikki Rae
My rating: 0 of 5 stars

Really interesting premise. I don't want to say much beyond the book blurb.

It made me think of what lengths I would go to for my family, and what decisions I would make in certain situations. I could have done with more explanation around Jonah's situation (it wasn't what I expected), and more at the ending, but overall, enjoyable.

View all my reviews

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Review: Murder on a Girls' Night Out

Murder on a Girls' Night Out Murder on a Girls' Night Out by Anne George
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

New series for me. Two sisters who bicker a lot, and love each other. Charming enough to continue!

Patricia Ann (Mouse) is the cautious, conventional sister. Mary Alice (Sister) is the loud, boisterous life of the party sister. Mary Alice, in her typical "look before you leap" style, buys a Country Western line dancing bar. Then the former owner was found murdered at the bar, and the sisters are on the case.

A pretty well-plotted mystery that kept me guessing along the way. I'll be back to see what shenanigans the girls get into in book 2. Fun cozy mystery series.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Review: Poison Study

Poison Study Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

So much happens in this book, I hardly know where to begin!

We have Yelena, a strong, smart heroine with flaws. My favorite. We have Valek, who is strong, mysterious, and a bit brooding. Protective, yet still treats her as an equal. Totally my jam. We have solid world building. Ixia becomes a real place in your mind. You get enough information to understand where we are going, unlike other first books in a series. And you get interesting side characters, although at times not enough of them.

Condemned to death for murder, Yelena is given a reprieve as the Commander's food taster. Facing death every day in her new role, she is able to learn the job quickly (a good trait in a food taster!) and proves to be a valuable addition to the team surrounding the Commander, who has an interesting backstory himself. It's details like these that make this book a good read. Enjoy your trip to Ixia, but be sure you have someone taste your food while you are there. I'll see you when you get back.

View all my reviews