Like many others I’m a huge Jet Mykles fan and anything she writes is an auto-buy for me. Add in about musicians and a Gay For You theme and I’m pretty excited to read. Reverb doesn’t quite live up to the greatness of the Heaven Sent series but it’s an absorbing, gritty read about the reality of fame and drugs. The main couple is well crafted and the story itself flies by, almost too fast, with a lot of great secondary characters that catch your interest. The only real compliant I have is that once the couple gets together the last 100 pages or so is filled with sex scene after sex scene, perhaps making up for the lack in the previous 200 pages, but it also feels a bit repetitive without a lot of tension. This is a small compliant though and I highly doubt many fans will mind. Continue reading
Monthly Archives: August 2011
Muffled Drum is an absorbing page turning historical story. In fact I didn’t want to put this down as the setting and characters sucked me in from the beginning. The story is poignant and often bittersweet but with a solid HEA ending that should definitely please fans. The writing is very strong with a rich, descriptive setting and lots of contrasting interests. The characters are intriguing with flaws and nuanced depth. My only slight issue is with the predictable “villain” character thrown in towards the end that I’m not sure even needed to be there. It adds a certain tone to the story but I disliked the obvious nature of his inclusion and furthermore the treatment of the character. However those could be personal reader preferences too and others won’t be bothered. Continue reading
One of the things I’ve felt since I’ve been reviewing is the kind of book you “should” read versus just the books you want to read. Now the main point of reviewing is of course to share your opinion on a book you wanted to read. Otherwise, what’s the point right?
Yet I get caught in this quagmire of what I should read and review as well. I don’t know if anyone else feels this way; if reviewers also feel this kind of pressure to read some books over others or if readers do too.
All I know is that sometimes I get a review request from books that I should read. Sometimes these are from a smaller press or they contain no erotica but a good concept. Sometimes these are from authors desperately trying to get some kind of commentary on their books or some kind of buzz going and they ask so nicely. I want to help these kinds of authors. I want to read their books, more for the idea of helping than because their book excites me.
Normally I push through this should versus want and convince myself I want to read these books. Sometimes I’m totally shocked and surprised and LOVE the book to pieces. This always makes me want to push through any immediate snap decisions and give another book a try. It helps me keep things fresh and interesting.
Yet the flip side to that is when I’m busy or stressed or uninspired, it’s a real struggle to read these books. I sometimes want nothing more than to read a bunch of (probably bad) erotica that is light, easy, and instantly forgettable. Sometimes I don’t really want to read the engrossing masterpieces. Sometimes I don’t want something meaty, complex, and lengthy to get through. Yanno, sometimes I just want the fluff.
However I rarely, if ever, review fluff books like that. I don’t feel it does the book any real justice. Usually these are not the best-written, most eloquent books. Usually these are pretty badly edited and have a plot that makes you want to roll your eyes. So taking that apart, exposing all the issues turns the book into a dirty little secret instead an enjoyable way to pass the time and forget it. These are books I occasionally want to read, but not necessarily the books I should read.
I notice that I get caught in this “should” versus “want” conspiracy much more when I’m reviewing. What about anyone else, does this happen to you? Do you get caught in what you should read versus what you want to read? Do you feel any pressure?
I adore JL Merrow’s sense of humor and Tortoise Interruptus is no different. The story is short, sweet, incredibly witty, and laugh out loud funny in parts. This is a great story for fans of Merrow’s as well as though new to the author. This is short enough to satisfy while giving a glimpse of the author’s trademark sense of humor. In fact it’s rare to read a story of JL Merrow’s that isn’t quite enjoyable and funny. So TI fits very well with her backlist and is an easy story to recommend. Continue reading
I’m currently reading a book that an author sent me for review. It’s an author I quite like a lot and I was very excited to get the book. I cracked it open and immediately started reading. Unfortunately it’s been dragging for me ever since. I’ve gotten to ~ page 75, but mostly by forcing myself. The book is ok, the writing pretty good and the characters should be fun. The setting is different and everything about the book SHOULD work for me. It really honestly should. But I gotta say I’m bored senseless and keep finding other things to do than read this book.
But I agreed to read it and review it, so I’m in a quandry.
Do I force myself to finish and write a review that will basically say this book bored me silly and I really forced myself to finish it for this review? Do I email the author and say thank you very much but I’m just not into it so I won’t write a review? Do I put the book down and hope to come back to it? (Honestly if I put it down… I won’t go back to it).
I’m in a quandry and mostly, I don’t want to keep reading this. It probably is a pretty good book but for whatever reason, I’m bored out of my mind.
So help me.. what should I do?
I really enjoy this author’s voice and writing, perhaps even more than the book itself. The ghosts were the absolute highlight of this story while the main couple left me cold. In particular the ingénue in Fitz drove me nuts with his idiocy and often “too stupid to live” moments. He has a lot and his bumbling, socially awkward manner should be endearing but soon turns frustrating for me as a reader. Not everyone may feel this way but for me the best part of the story by far were the ghosts; an element that didn’t even make much sense or seem to fit in well. Yet I’m very glad it’s there. Continue reading
Demonic Harmony is a short story that is considered paranormal I guess. I’m not entirely sure I understood the story or the angle the author was aiming for, though it’s enjoyable enough to read for a quick tale. The story centers on musician Shy who is some kind of paranormal creature. I’m not sure what kind, since the story doesn’t specify other than to say he feeds off energy. Lucky for him he meets a demonic guitarist, Seth, with energy to spare. The two get down and dirty quickly and often in this erotic short. Continue reading
As a fan of dystopian fiction, I was pretty excited to read Dark Sun. The story has a very nice urban fantasy setting that fulfilled that craving I always have for the genre while the characters and plot are decent. They’re not great unfortunately, partly due to the short nature of the novella, and the entire story rushes from start to finish. The characters feel unfinished and somewhat empty as they stick close to pretty well known stereotypes. There is a vague Romeo and Juliet feel to the star crossed lovers from warring families while one character is a pretty typical Robin Hood by stealing from the rich to give to the poor. Because of these obvious tropes, the story never quite satisfies and moves into something wholly unique but the various elements included are enough to make an interesting enough story if you’re a fan of urban fantasy. Continue reading
Not everyone agrees. This is guaranteed to happen with every new book, regardless of the popularity, the author, the buzz, the publisher, or even the book itself, not everyone will love it or hate it. There are always those lone reeds that stand up and go against the tide. It’s not always an easy position either. Whether you loved or hated the book in question, it’s never easy to stand up against the majority and try to defend your opinion.
I think it’s even worse when you’re not at either extreme. Recently I read a very well regarded and reviewed book. I mean most of the reviews on GoodReads are all 5 stars with more positive adjectives than I thought existed. Basically everyone who ever came across this book loved it to pieces. I didn’t. I didn’t hate it to be sure, but I thought it was ok at best. Frankly, I was pretty bored reading this supposedly incredible story and skimmed the last 20-30 pages just so I could finish. I questioned a lot of the author choices but was shocked none of the reviews touched on ANY of the issues I had. Not even in passing. I was left wondering if anyone noticed anything that seemed off to me.
Now this isn’t a bad book (and frankly which book it is doesn’t matter in the least) but I didn’t think it was good, let alone great. It was ok, decent. Yet I really don’t want to post a review against the tide because I can’t really pinpoint why. Sure I can list the issues I had and reasons it didn’t exactly work for me but at the same time, it’s some mystical chemistry where the characters just didn’t interest me. I was bored with them and how do you explain that? How do you break apart what is essentially a feeling into specifics?
It’s these middle of the road blah-ish books I really hate reviewing, especially if everyone has loved it before. Perhaps it really is an elusive chemistry thing where there is nothing wrong with the book per se but it just didn’t spark with you. It’s very difficult to explain coherently and eloquently. Yet it definitely, absolutely happens.
So to the book I failed to spark with, I’m sorry. I don’t know if it was you or I but we didn’t mesh. Better luck with another reader.
Have you ever had that happen? How do you deal with it, do you review said book or just leave a rating and move on?
I’m one of the many that bought this book when it was published previously but for whatever reason never got around to reading it. So when I got it from Loose Id, I realized it was re-released but definitely worth getting. It’s a very cute story about a polyamorous relationship and it’s one that really works. I’m not always a fan of multiple partner books but this one is so cute, adorable, warm, and very entertaining. It’s just simply works as a great story and one that’s likely to leave you with a satisfied smile. Continue reading