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A blog about books and other things speculative

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Melanie's Week in Review - November 24, 2013



Melanie's Week in Review - November 24, 2013




This week I am going to do something a little different. I am going to tell you a story...

Melanie's Week in Review - November 24, 2013
Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess slightly chubby 40-something reviewer ...who I will name Melanie. Melanie was waiting one cold and frosty morning for bus to go to the gym. She happened to glance at her mobile phone and saw an email from Amazon informing her of a recent order. To her delight the princess reviewer Melanie, read on to discover that book 2 of the Penryn and the End of Days series by Susan Ee, World After had been released. Despite it being 6am and a mere 4C Melanie jumped up and down with delight quickly downloading the book. Even though Melanie had received books from her fairy god mother Qwill  months before that she still hadn't read or reviewed such as City of Bones by Bailey Cunningham and she still hadn't finished King of Thorns by Mark Lawrence she just couldn't resist reading the book she had been looking forward to reading It wasn't long before her chariot bus arrived and she was tucked into reading the book.

Over the next few days Melanie furiously read the book and while she had been eagerly anticipating the new release she was left at the end, a tad disappointed. The lead protagonist Penryn was still forthright and courageous but there was however, very little interaction with the angel Rafe or at least not until the very end. She felt it was aimed more obviously to a younger reader than than book 1. It was still pretty grisly in parts and a nice cliff hanger at the end that entices the reader for book 3.

With World After finished Melanie had much to do to return her book reading kingdom to its former, more organized glory. Who knows what literary delight will be waiting for the princess reviewer the next time she waits for her chariot bus to pick her up and drive her into the golden sunrise.

.....The End





Melanie's Week in Review - November 24, 2013Well I hope you enjoyed that little tale. Before you think I am completely off my rocker I will share with you what else I read this week. I finished both Pantomine (Pantomime 1) by Laura Lam and at long last King of Thorns (The Broken Empire 2) by Mark Lawrence. While initially I was gripped by Pantomine I thought it really dragged at the end and I totally guessed at the ending. I knew that it was Young Adult Fantasy, but I was just hoping it wouldn't have been so obviously aimed at the younger reader. I have a bad habit of knowing a book/series is aimed at a younger reader and then still hoping the main characters don't act their age.  It's a bit unfair of me to expect this especially as Lam has created a really interesting world. Overall, I liked it want to continue with the series.

I will admit that King of Thorns was hard going. I love Lawrence's writing style and world building however, this book with its jostling back and forth from past to present was a bit overwhelming. I think I should have pushed myself to read it in one go as with big delays between chapters made it all the more difficult to re-engage with. Jorg and the other main characters are very unlikeable so that combined with a complex plot, fantasy world and mix of past and present make the second installment of this series a bit harder to read.

I just barely...and I mean just barely started City of Bones by Bailey Cunningham so I feel that I am on my way to getting back on my reading track. That's it for me this week. I hope you enjoyed my attempt at creative writing and that you have a great week ahead. Until next week Happy Reading.

Melanie's Week in Review - November 17, 2013


Melanie's Week in Review - November 17, 2013


Hello! This was my first week back home after my holiday in Canada. I got over my jetlag but am trying to adjust to the more autumnal weather. As winter approaches I want to read more 'snuggly' types of books. Did I manage it???  Well this is what I read.

Melanie's Week in Review - November 17, 2013
I finished Kindred and Wings (Shifted World 2) by Philippa Ballantine. I will be reviewing this book so I don't want to give to much away but what I can say is that Ballantine is extremely talented. She has the ability to write light-hearted, funny and intriguing steampunk to thoughtful, imaginative fantasy. I don't think I have ever read so many books by one author that I have loved as much. This is a great series, as is her Book of the Order series. I have a special soft sport for the Ministry series and I can HARDLY wait until the next Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences book is out next year. Ballantine writes this series with her hubby Tee Morris and I LOVE IT.

Melanie's Week in Review - November 17, 2013I turned back to Amazon Recommendations for my next book which was 100% naughty as I had loads of other books to read. I decided on Fire and Thorns which was the first in the series by the same name written by Rae Carson. The story sounded sounded quite intriguing  - chubby princess sold off in a political marriage, country at war and a mission to help the helpless. It all sounded like a great, quick, enjoyable read. It was definitely quick and I quite liked it at the start but I soon got bored. It all seemed to be a bit too cliche with the plump princess who turns svelte and gazelle like while at the same time saving all those around her. I thought this was pretty good young fantasy but perhaps a bit too young for an adult reader.

I am really struggling with King of Thorns (Broken Empire 2) by Mark Lawrence. I really enjoyed the first book of this series, the premise and his writing style, but this second installment is just soo morose. I can barely stand to continue on as everything is soo dark and unforgiving. I will continue with it though I may not finish it as soon as I thought I would.

Melanie's Week in Review - November 17, 2013
I bought Pantomine (Pantomime 1) by Laura Lam a few weeks ago and then forgot about it. I decided it was high time I get to this book and now I am totally gripped. What a great hero/heroine. How ingenious Lam was to have a hermaphrodite as the main protagonist and combining this with the circus just adds another dimension. I am hoping to have this finished to tell you all about it next week.

That's it for me for this week. I hope I have more to tell you about next week so until next week Happy Reading.



Melanie's Week in Review - October 20, 2013


Melanie's Week in Review - October 20, 2013


Well it was a bumper crop for me this week. I got back in my reading 'groove' and got through 4 books this week. Please insert happy dance here.


Melanie's Week in Review - October 20, 2013
I finished reading Rogue's Possession by Jeffe Kennedy (Carina Press, October 7, 2013). I really liked it. If you had read my 'WIR' last week you would know that I had forgotten some of the plot points from book 1. I wish I had gone back and re-read the ending of the previous book as there were some significant parts of the plot that I couldn't remember that were discussed in this one. I did appreciate how Kennedy didn't write big re-caps as some authors tend to do. Despite some 'fuzzy' bits I still thought it was a great story. I like how Kennedy doesn't pull any punches with her heroine. Some pretty nasty things happen to Gwyn who is trying hard not to be anyone's slave, especially Rogue's. In this installment Gwyn is looking for answers. She is searching for an answer to why fae firstborn children are going missing and trying not to end up having Rogue's. Kennedy has also created an interesting relationship between Gwyn and Rogue. Gwyn is strong and is trying to do the right thing whereas Rogue is manipulative and a little bit selfish. Together they make an interesting couple and you spend a large part of the novel wondering when or if they would ever get together. The book summary makes Rogue's Possession sounds like just another romantic fantasy but it is so much more. This is a great book but if you haven't read Rogue's Pawn then you need to start at the beginning of Gwyn's story. There is an added bonus that both books have gorgeous covers (apart from Rogue's rather dodgy mustache in book 2) but try not to do what I do by spending more time looking at the cover than reading the book!


Melanie's Week in Review - October 20, 2013I then discovered that the final book of the Blood Destiny series, Bloodlust by Helen Harper had been released. I had discovered this series from my Kindle recommendations. This is one of the few series that the books actually get weaker and weaker as the series progresses. By the time I got to this final book I was almost at the point of being bored. I think I predicted all of the plot developments including the ending. I also couldn't figure out how the main antagonist, Endor the necromancer could be more powerful than the Fae, the mages, shapeshifters and girl who can transform into a dragon who have teamed up to fight against him. Everything is wrapped up with a bow at the end. It was a quick, easy read so not all bad plus I quite liked the cover.

I finished Bloodlust on my way home from a conference so needed a really short, very easy on the brain book to read on the train ride home. I found one from my Kindle recommendations.  All I can say is boy it was bad. It was so bad I am not even going to admit to the name of it. Lets just say it was SFR and involved cyborgs....which don't make convincing love interests by the way.


Melanie's Week in Review - October 20, 2013I moved onto a book that Qwill sent me awhile ago called Immortal Trust (Curse of the Templars 3) by Claire Ashgrove. I started it a few weeks ago but kept forgetting to put in my bag so didn't make very much progress as I don't usually read that much at home. I am planning to review this one so don't want to say too much. One thing I can say is check out the cover. 'Hubba hubba' (very immature of me, I know!).

Finally, I started King of Thorns by Mark Lawrence which is the second book of The Broken Empire series. Lawrence excels at writing gritty, unlikeable but wildly engaging books. I am hoping to finish it this week.



I am feeling quite smug at what I managed to read this week so on that note I am going to wish you a good week in reading. Until next week Happy Reading. 

Melanie's Week in Review - November 24, 2013Melanie's Week in Review - November 17, 2013Melanie's Week in Review - October 20, 2013

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