Books I read this week Vol 23, June 17

Magic Slays

Author: Ilona Andrews

Series: Kate Daniels #5

Tags: paranormal romance, urban fantasy, magic, shape shifters, vampires, necromancers

Format: audiobook

Rating: Yay!

 

Magic Slays? More like Magic #Slay!

 

Lol.

 

In this episode, Kate and Curran are power couple super team!

(See, Anne Bishop? This is what you do after you've paired a couple. #6 of the Others BETTER BE like this.)

There's still lots of conflict because 1) Kate has serious trust issues and 2) Kate likes to pull a Katniss by throwing herself in front of any bullet or calamity directed at anyone ever!

Oh no! Julie might get a splinter! Kate! Throw yourself in front of the shard of wood!

 

Onto the next!


 

Gunmetal Magic

Author: Ilona Andrews

Series: Kate Daniels #5.5

Tags: Kickass heroine, paranormal romance, urban fantasy, werehyena, gods

Format: audiobook

Rating: yay!

 

This is the second installment of Andrea and Raphael's love story. I've come to think of them as Kate and Curran Lite. I keep hoping they are different in personality than Kate and Curran, but they are just less extreme. 

The set up for both characters is kind of a let down. Andrea is supposed to be a chipper do-gooder, perfect knight and Kate's BFF. Raphael is a suave ladies man, the golden boy of the matriarchal hyena clan. 

They had more personality when they were first introduced, actually. They fall into the love you/hate you back and forth that we already saw Kate and Curran do.

Now Andrea is embracing her hyena side, and so what little personality she had in the beginning has been erased. I've never been too excited about her. I wanted to like her more than I did.

 

And what's with this hyena matriarchal clan thing? They make a big deal about it, but the only difference I can see is that they are ruled by a woman. Big deal. The men are supposed to be submissive, but of course, they aren't. Raphael is alpha of the males, billionaire and business mogul, so he's out.

 

Still fun though!

 

OMG. Shape shifter courting rituals are THE BEST.

 

Bah! This is the last audiobook OverDrive has on Kate Daniels, even though there are more novels! Will I read them with my eyes? ...I don't know... The last time I read an Ilona Andrews with my eyes is was Bayou Moon, and though I did like it, I didn't finish it. Not enough romance. It was only when the audiobook came out that I could finish it... and it's my favorite Ilona Andrews! Willliiiiam!


 

Tempting Mr. Townsend

Author: Anna Campbell

Series: Dashing Widows #2

Tags: Historical Romance, Regency, growly, widow, children, Yorkshire accent, merchant

Format: ebook

Rating: yay!

 

Hmmm...

I'm reconsidering my allegiance to Anna Campbell.

 

Okay, so granted, this is a novella, so it's not exactly like there's time to really delve into the characters. I found myself disappointed most of all by Mr. Townsend, who started off so growly, and ended up just being well adjusted and kind. I was looking for the Anna Campbell Torturous Boner--that angsty, needy, growly guy--and I didn't find it. 

It's probably that I love Campbell's Seven Nights in a Rogue's Bed so much. So so much. Oh, how I love it. 

Probably my love has overshadowed Campbell's other books. Now that I think of it, they haven't been as good. Untouched comes close, but it's not the same.

 

It was still fun, though. Now that I have been disappointed, I can take her books on more even ground. Who knows? Maybe I will be pleasantly surprised again!


 

Amish Vampires in Space

Author: Kerry Nietz

Series: Peril in Plain Space #1

Tags: SciFi, Space Opera, spaceship, captain, Amish, Christian, vampires, vampire goat!

Format: ebook

Rating: blerrrgh

 

This is the next Getting Lit Podcast book! So I will attempt to not spoil it for you.

 

I realized when reading this book that the only time I read dude authors is when I'm reading books for book clubs. And I almost unanimously hate them. In fact, the last book that I liked that was written by a dude was a lit crit book about Jane Austen.

 

Hrmmm...

 

You can understand, then, the sinking feeling I had when I fully grasped what this book is about.

Not a romance. Not humorous. Christian. Amish. Written by a dude.

 

A vague outline of my thoughts:

  • Excessive amounts of POVs.
  • Excessive fragment sentences with adjectives and verbs repeated. Reiterated. Drilled into the ground.
  • Women as earmuffs.
  • The worst kind of vampire.
  • Oh, heavens! The color yellow!
  • Did God just punish the Amish for being the wrong kind of Christian?

 

Check out these and other thoughts from Ilana and our special guest Justin in the upcoming podcast!


 

Hearts of Shadow

Author: Kira Brady

Series: Deadglass #2

Tags: Paranormal romance, urban fantasy, post apocalypse, shape shifters, dragons, assassins, kickass heroine

Format: audiobook

Rating: yay!

 

Overdrive just lately, randomly came out with this one, though they have 1,3, and 0.5 already of the series. I read 1 and 3 a while ago, and I refuse to read 0.5 because it is a Back in Time prequel. I hate those. I don't like mixing my genres, and Back in Times are pretty much historical + paranormal. If I'm reading a shape shifter series written in present day, I am not interested in randomly going back X number of years to some characters that are already dead and their story is already resolved. I'm talking to you, Jennifer Ashley.

 

The general premise: blah blah factions of mystical beings, living in secret among humans, come into the light after a wave of magic unravels all technology, and high tech cities are now set back to steam engine technology. So, basically Kate Daniels, but less fun, and this one's set in Seattle! Also, dragons replace vampires as the species that opposes the shape shifter faction, and they have most of the same elements: soul sucking, immortality, aristocratic good looks, etc.

 

Here's what I remember from 1 and 3.

#1: Hearts of Darkness.

  • moderately fun.
  • female heroine is kind of a weenie.
  • werewolf! yay! He so growly!
  • literal saving of day with magic vagina.

#3: Hearts of Chaos

  • waaaaay too long. We go into the underworld, and a bunch of dumb made up stuff happens.
  • You know how in order to have a variety in a series, you have a tough street-wise heroine, then a smart heroine, then a sweet, timid heroine? OMG I hate every book with the timid heroine. This girl is beyond annoying. She is a recently disillusioned, spoiled, weak, rich girl, barely 19, who just recently started getting any redeemable quality at the beginning of the series. If I had to hear about how weak her powers were one more time... Ugh. Gross.
  • The dude is as bad, if not worse. He's the leader of all the shape shifters, and is one of those cold, implacable paragons of all that is righteous. It's not even fun to see him taken down a peg because he takes soooo long to come to terms with his humanity, and loving Ms. Weakling.
  • Also something about a male sex slave sexing a former lover possessed by a goddess to distract her and save the world...? So there's that.

 

Okay, so #2.

I was excited because the heroine here is a kickass street-smart-assassin/vigilante with a mysterious past and runes tattooed on her body. So cool! I liked it.

Holy hell, it took me a long time to realize she's half Asian. You know how sometimes you just discard physical descriptions of characters and make up your own? I kept picturing her with a pixie cut, even though they mentioned her long hair multiple times. I think I knew a Grace with short hair once.

 

And the hero! Dawwww! What a cutie patootie!

This guy.

So, in this series, the dragons (who shape shift between humans and dragons) have no soul, were cursed by their goddess to slowly lose their humanity until they go crazy from being so old and immortal and shit. The curse is broken if they find a mate. Basically, bizarro Angel.

The bad guy in the first book is a sociopathic dragon who decides to take over the world. Typical, right?

He dies in the first book, and his younger brother inherits the dragony thrown. He is the squishy emo absentminded professor brother!

Giant puppy eyes!

For someone who has no soul, he certainly has all of the feelings. For the past two hundred years, he's been tinkering away in a hidden lab, dreaming about his perfect mate, while his brother rampages and conquers the world.

How is that okay, again? He seems to have a moral compass, but just now realized he should do something about it. That poor thing!

More Privileged Dragon World Problems show up when he starts to fall for his magically bonded slave assassin Grace, who literally has to do what he says.

 

Also, this guy is walking around cravat. Oh, bless his heart. He's riding around present day Seattle in the middle of a technology free crisis in a carriage wearing a cravat, hessian boots, and a red military jacket.

Buddy, you have lived in modern America for the past two hundred years. You ain't no George Wickham.

 

He's invited to my next Jane Austen movie marathon.

And you know what? I KNOW he's not a real person, but rather a character from some weird book about dragon-humans.

Just for that, you're not invited.