Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Review: Covet

Covet (Fallen Angels, #1) Covet by J.R. Ward

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Overall, this was a good book. Ward is great with characters, and that doesn't change here. Her hero(es) are fantastic, down to their witty one liners, and her two main female characters (heroine and villainess) were outstanding. For all the knocks that Ward has taken about under-developed female characters, she certainly seems to have taken that criticism to heart and fixed it in this book. There is actual character development with her heroine, and her villainess is just plain evil. And kinda scary, like all the best villains are. I was expecting a lot more from the fallen angels, but ended up liking their roles just fine. Maybe, in time, they will become more front and center, but I found myself liking their sideline role very much. They are helpers, but ONLY helpers. Heavy lifting has to be done by someone else, and I thought that was very nice.

I liked the nods to people and places of the Black Dagger Brotherhood books. I liked seeing a lot of Trez. (Who doesn't?) Other throwbacks were more subtle but made me smile. The story, for the most part, moved along nicely and this was the first full length novel I read on my Sony e-reader so it, and the book, passed the test.

A few things I could have done without: I liked this MUCH better than the first Black Dagger Brotherhood book, Dark Lover but this one still suffered from a few first book problems. There was a lot of telling (and not showing) in terms of world building. When you're setting up a new world, new rules of engagement, new characters, it is really hard to get around the pages of explanation that are needed for the reader to understand what is going on. I get that. Some authors do this really well, and some do not. Ward does not. It is all stuff the reader needs to know, but the delivery method leaves much to be desired. Quite frankly, I get bored. Pages and pages of exposition, important or not, makes for droopy eyelids. That's just how it is. Where she does characterization REALLY well, this could use some work.

The other thing I hate is the narrator's voice. The narrator speaks like a thirteen year old girl. Calls a new beer a "freshie". That is the one example that is still grating on my nerves even though I'm done with the book, although there are more examples. If a character talks like that, I'm fine with it. That is their vocabulary. I may want to smack them, but if it is consistent with the character, so be it. But when the omniscient narrator speaks like that, it grates on my nerves. A lot. It wasn't as bad as the BDB books can get sometimes, but it was bad enough that I noticed it. I could have taken notes about it on my new Sony toy, but I haven't made it to that advanced user level yet!

Overall, though, this was a good book. I liked all the characters, I am interested in their past, present and future, and I'm excited for the next book.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

I have an addiction

I can't stop checking out library books materials. No, really, I'm serious. We have new item limits coming into play in a few months, and I am currently WAY over those limits. Meaning, if I don't find things to return, I won't be able to check anything out. Sounds like a good fate for someone who can't stop checking things out, right?

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. The problem is that when you are constantly seeing new books, people with addictions (ie. me) are compelled to put them on hold or check them out. There was a time when I had absolutely NOTHING checked out on my card. I had returned everything, paid a ginormous fine, and said I would *never* blah blah blah.....yeah, you get the picture. Yesterday, I had 100 items checked out. 100.


And what am I currently engrossed in? What can I not put down? Which library book, CD, movie am I going to return to break out of three digits borrower's prison? Yeah. Covet, by JR Ward. On my Sony ebook reader. If only that was a library item so I could return it......

Monday, October 5, 2009

Review: Frostbitten

Frostbitten (Women of the Otherworld, #10) Frostbitten by Kelley Armstrong

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
You CAN go home again!

While Kelley Armstrong has never traveled too far afield from the werewolf clan that started the Women of the Otherworld series in Bittenthere have been many characters and storylines added since then. But, coming back to Elena and Clay was like a GOOD trip back to the place you called home. You can see how they've grown and changed over the years, but some part of them is still the same couple that I remember. And, even beyond the relationship aspect of the book, the plot and the mystery and the action was as good as it has ever been. If you're looking for a straight romance book, this will disappoint you. The "couple" after all, is married with children already. This isn't a boy meets girl kind of book, although some of her books are heavy on that element. This is a boy and girl battle snow, beasties, bad guys, kick ass, have sex, save the day kind of book. But, if you're an Armstrong fan, you already knew that, right?

While there are some mentions of other characters, this is a Clay and Elena book. No Paige, No Lucas, No Savannah, etc. You get the picture. So, if those are your favorites, just know you won't find them here. A couple of new, potentially future main characters were introduced and I found myself loving them both. I was recently in Anchorage (2007) and could practically feel the place through Armstrong's scenery descriptions. I felt like I was back there. They felt like visitors, having the same experiences (for the most part) that I had when I was there. Even Reindeer sausage was mentioned (although I didn't try it like Clay and Elena did.)

Overall, reading this book made me happy. I enjoyed every part of it, was up late three nights in a row reading, and am already anxiously awaiting the next book in the series. All of these are good signs that whatever it is Armstrong is using to power this series, it is still going strong.

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