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The Qwillery

A blog about books and other things speculative

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Melanie's Week in Review - August 30, 2015


Melanie's Week in Review - August 30, 2015


Happy Bank Holiday to any readers in the UK. I hope you are having a good one. I am trying to avoid getting too wet as, of course, it is raining. Apologies for not posting a WIR last week but I didn't even finish 1 book *gasp*. I was very lucky to be selected to beta read Michael Sullivan's newest book The Death of Dulgath which is finds us back again in Riyria in the company of two of my favourite heroes - Royce and Hadrian. Needless to say I can't tell you much about it other than its a great read. So what have I been able to read in the last two weeks?


Melanie's Week in Review - August 30, 2015
I started the week with Crossed which is the third and final instalment of the Soul Eaters series by Eliza Crewe. The part demon part Beacon Meda Melange is back and fighting to save the world from certain annihilation from the demons. The Crusaders, who Meda has been living with, fighting for and being friends with are being wiped out as the war escalates. Meda doesn't know where to turn or what to do as friends become enemies and enemies become allies especially when Jo does the unthinkable. Everything looks like it is going to Hell when in fact that is exactly where Meda and her fiends end up. Can they escape, can they save humanity?

I have enjoyed this series especially the first instalment where Crewe uses one of my all time favourite words - hangry (when you are so hungry you are angry). Crewe really ramps up the body count as nearly everyone apart from a Meda and her closest friends die at the hands of the demons. This instalment starts out with some great scenes between Meda and Jo but this soon devolves into more stereotypical, teenage hysteria and melodrama. There few points in the later chapters that I was hoping that a demon would take out Jo just so I didn't have to read anymore of her childish rants. No such luck. I feel that Crewe ruined what could have been a great ending if it hadn't been for Jo. I was just a tad disappointed with the ending but do not regret reading the series.


Melanie's Week in Review - August 30, 2015
Book 2 was Dannika Dark's Two Minutes which is the sixth book in the Seven series. The story is set about 10 years after the end of Three Hours. This time Dark tells the story of Maizy, the young human sister of Lexi and her childhood protector Denver. Maizy comes home after years in boarding school and living in England. She may have grown up but Denver is conflicted over the feelings he has for the beautiful young woman Maizy has become. Maizy still feels safe in the arms of her childhood protector but the more she is with him the more she comes to realise that he is much more than just her protector. Will true love prevail or will Maizy miss out on her fairy tale ending?

I have always found the Seven series nice easy reads that don't tax my brain too much and Two Minutes was no exception. In fact, this instalment was light on the plot as there was one too many coincidences for Maizy and Denver. A lot was made of Maizy being human and why she wasn't a suitable partner for a shifter so when it turns out that she isn't actually human and can turn into any type of shifter this seemed like a bit of a cop out. This really felt like the end of the series but apparently there is another book to go. I don't really know who is left to pair up so will be interested to find out how Dark decides to finish this series.


Melanie's Week in Review - August 30, 2015
The final book I am going to tell you about is One Part Human by Viola Grace which is the first instalment of the Obscure Magic series. I came across it in my Amazon recommendations. Boy did Amazon get that one wrong. I got 60% of the way through and gave up on the story of Benny who is so magically special that she has stayed hidden for most of her life. She hides away as a food blogger until she is made to patrol with the Extranormal Investigation Agency. So despite trying to keep her powers hidden she makes a point of solving every case with her 'special skills' and ends up blabbing her hidden secret by the end of the fourth chapter. Not only was it dull it was also confusing but I was soo bored reading it that I couldn't be bothered trying to figure out what was going on with the lackluster plot.


That is it for me for this week. I wish I had some super great books to tell you about but it seems I have had a rather mediocre week in books. Wish me luck for next week. Until then Happy Reading.

Melanie's Week in Review - February 15, 2015


Melanie's Week in Review - February 15, 2015


Happy Day after Valentine's Day one and all. I hope your shelves were bursting with PNR and lots of chocolate on the day. I was very magnanimous and shared the day with the 'outlaws' and my eldest stepson. I am on a diet so no chocolate hearts for me and I had to settle for diet of PNR on the big day. So what did I read?

Melanie's Week in Review - February 15, 2015
I started the week by reading Finn Fancy Necromancy which is the debut novel by one of the most hilarious authors in town  - Randy Henderson. I actually got my act together and got a book read in time to be reviewed as part of the Qwillery's very own  - Debut Author Challenge. So instead of my usual 'I will be writing a full review so keep your eye out for it' I am actually able to say 'check out my review here! While you are at it you can enjoy Randy's interview. I am still chuckling over Randy's witty responses. Finn Fancy Necromancy is one of those rare books that combines humour and a great mystery. I could say toss me some wax for my lyrical but I think I did that enough in my review so please read and find why I thought it was such a good book.

Melanie's Week in Review - February 15, 2015
Book number two for me was Eliza Crewe's Crushed which is also Crewe's second book in the Soul Eater series. For those of you how follow my WIR you might remember I reviewed the first book of the series Cracked way, way back in September 2013. Crewe gave me one of my favourite words of 2013  - hangry. Meda is still living with the Crusaders but feeling constrained by their rules and restrictive lifestyle. She meets up with the hunky halfling Armand who tempts her to rebel. A war between the Crusaders and the demons is about to start and whose side will Meda be on?  While I enjoyed Crushed I didn't think it was quite as amusing as book 1. In fact there were a few chapters in the middle where I started to lose interest as Meda got to be a bit too whiny and feeling sorry for herself. It did turn itself around at the end and Meda was back to being the kick-ass heroine she was in book 1. Crewe states in her afterward that she managed to release this book following the collapse of her publisher Strange Chemistry. I don't know if there is a going to be a book 3 but I hope so, even if a final one to finish off the series.

That is it for me this week. I started Soulbound by Kristen Callihan and try as I might I wasn't able to finish it. I will tell you all next week. But until then Happy Reading.

Melanie's Week in Review - September 29, 2013


Melanie's Week in Review - September 29, 2013


Hello! Autumn decided to surprise us this week with some gorgeous weather which allowed me to sneak in a bit more outside reading time on my lunch breaks. I fear that is all over until next June (if we are lucky, this is English weather). Anyway onto what I was reading.

Melanie's Week in Review - September 29, 2013
I finished off Cracked by Eliza Crewe (Strange Chemistry, Nov. 5, 2013) and LOVED IT! This is the first in the Soul Eater series and I can hardly wait for the next book to come out. The more I thought about it the more I decided it was definitely YA UF. If you go purely by the book summary it could be adult UF but the heroine (or anti-heroine) Meda is in her teens and towards the end it reads more like typical YA novels I have read before. Meda however, is not your typical teenage heroine. She is part demon and rips people to pieces in order to eat their souls. Needless to say she isn't terribly likeable at first but has all the funniest lines in the book. There was several places where I got all 'LOLy' and doing that on public transportation can lead to a lot of weird looks. I had a few of the more hilarious comments bookmarked and went back and read them afterwards and still thought they were funny after a second reading. I even have a new favourite word that Meda uses in the book which is "hangry" when you get angry from being hungry. Tee hee.

Meda finds out that she is more than just a soul eating, violence craving monster and teams up with a group of 'templars' in training teenagers to try to eradicate her own kind. Nothing is ever straight forward and Meda discovers more about herself than she bargained for. There are some quite sad parts of this book, as well and demonstrates Crewe's ability to create a well rounded character that had me cringing at the gruesome scenes where Meda literally 'lets rip', laughing at her sarcasm and reaching for a tissue during some rather touching moments towards the end (don't want to give you any spoilers!). This is a great start to the series and if you like YA then this is a must read.

Melanie's Week in Review - September 29, 2013I also read Perdition by Ann Aguirre (Ace, August 27, 2013). I read and reviewed Bronze Gods that Aguirre wrote with her husband but I haven't read any of her solo novels. If Perdition is anything to go by then I am going to get buying a few. I will be writing a full review so keep your eyes out for it.

Melanie's Week in Review - September 29, 2013I started to panic that I had only read two books this week and wouldn't have anything to tell you so I was very naughty and bought some more. I bought and read Priceless by Shannon Mayer. It is about a young woman with exceptional talents at finding lost children. Her sister was kidnapped when she was young and the guilt has driven her to use her skills to rescue other missing kids. When a child is kidnapped on the same day in the same park as her own sister she discovers this is more than just a coincidence. The heroine Rylee is pretty kick ass. She is friends with a witch, has a werewolf as a pet, a troll makes her brownies and she fancies an FBI agent. I thought the book was OK. I had it finished in a day which means it was fairly easy to read but maybe not as challenging with the plot as it could have been.

I also bought King of Thorns by Mark Lawrence and Crown of Midnight by Sarah J Maas. I  read the first books of both these series last year and decided I was overdue in buying the next books. Hopefully, I will get a chance next week to get them read and tell you what I thought of them. But until then I wish you a good week ahead and Happy Reading!

Melanie's Week in Review - September 22, 2013


Melanie's Week in Review - September 22, 2013


I will start this post off with a mini apology. I am later than I normally like to be writing my WIR. I have gotten back into playing a game on my Xbox called Dragon Age Origins which I have played before. My best friend and I were talking about the newest game in the series to be released in 2014 which got me reminiscing about my favourite characters. I thought I would re-play the first hour or so and I am now 6 hours into the game and back to being obsessed! Extremely naughty as stuff I need to get done....like reviews aren't happening as quickly as they should.

Melanie's Week in Review - September 22, 2013
Enough of that though...onto books. I have had another excellent week of reading. I was minding my own business on Twitter when I saw a tweet by J.T Geissinger saying her latest release Edge of Darkness was on NetGalley. If it was possible to  to trip racing to NetGalley then I think I would have. I had the book downloaded and started reading about 5 minutes later. I have been enjoying this series and this book was no exception. I am going to be reviewing it so not in a position to say too much here. Keep your eye out for it though as I have lots to say!

Melanie's Week in Review - September 22, 2013I also had a little delivery through my letterbox in the form of Chimes at Midnight by Seanan McGuire.  This continues the October Daye series and finds one of our favourite heroines back to risking life and limb. I really enjoyed this installment and perhaps more than the last. In previous books October has been almost as obsessed with drinking coffee as she is with fighting baddies. In fact when I think back that is what I remember about the story rather than what 'really' happened. In Chimes at Midnight October loses her coffee obsession and this lets the plot shine though. There is lots more of Tybalt who I really like as a character,as well as The Luidaeg. McGuire is a great storyteller and even more so that she can switch between different genres so successfully. I absolutely loved The Newsflesh trilogy written under her Mira Grant pseudonym. Chimes at Midnight is another great book in the series with chases, near death experiences and a lot of plot development.


Melanie's Week in Review - September 22, 2013
I am ending the week reading Cracked by Eliza Crewe which I am LOVING! I will also be reviewing this one but what I can say it is HILARIOUS. I am going to have to restrain myself and not quote all the funny lines. I am not sure but I think it is YA but there is a lot of blood, guts and swearing. Maybe it is 'funny' genre?

I thought it was quite interesting reading a number of tweets and blog posts about book reviews and reviewers this week. One that I thought was very interesting was on Ilona Andrews' blog. They (not sure if it was Ilona or Gordon who wrote it) were discussing how readers interpret their books differently....differently to how they thought they had written it. They also talked about negative reviews and reviewers in general. I find it interesting how book reviews seem to be more 'volatile' than other types of review - restaurant reviews, theatre reviews, movie reviews. I find this odd. I have made decisions not to watch a movie if it got poor reviews but seldom use reviews to decide whether or not to read a book. I wonder why this is? Do we put more value into book reviews than other types and that is why people tend to comment more to negative reviews? Chuck Wendig tweeted that he doesn't read reviews which I also thought was interesting....and maybe a tiny bit disappointing as a reviewer. Whether I like a book or not I value the fact the author can do ...or did do something I haven't and likely ever to, which is to write a book. I did have to force myself not to read all the comments or I wouldn't have gotten anything else read. I am sure the topic will come up again on Twitter again soon.

I better finish this off so I can get it posted so that's it for me folks, until next week Happy Reading,

Melanie's Week in Review - August 30, 2015Melanie's Week in Review - February 15, 2015Melanie's Week in Review - September 29, 2013Melanie's Week in Review - September 22, 2013

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