Welcome

Welcome to my train of thought. Just a warning, there might be turbulence. I'm a little eccentric, but hopefully you'll find something here that'll make the crazy worth it. Stay tuned for book reviews, ramblings on random things, and all sorts of stuff that tickles my fancy. But keep your hands and arms inside the vehicle at all times. My brain is a scary place!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

July Update, Day 18

Day 18, and five books down.  That's two more books in the five days since the last update, so we're getting closer to my normal pace.  I've picked up Ilona Andrews, because if there's anything that will cure a reading slump, it's Ilona Andrews.  That writing duo is pretty much the cure for any type of slump. LOL

Remaining on list:
Urban Enemies (anthology) by various authors (ARC - August 1)
Red Dirt Heart #4 by N. R. Walker
The Magician King by Lev Grossman
The Magician's Land by Lev Grossman
White Hot by Ilona Andrews
Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Maybe:
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Sticks & Stones by Madeleine Urban and Abigail Roux
Redemption Song by Craig Schaefer
The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
Indexing: Reflections by Seanan McGuire
The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson
Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson
The Bands of Mourning by Brandon Sanderson
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins

Started/In Progress:
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews
A Killer Harvest by Paul Cleave (ARC - August 1)

Finished so far:
Two Nights by Kathy Reichs
Scorpion Trap by Pippa DaCosta
The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
The Magicians by Lev Grossman
The Fifth Doll by Charlie Holmberg (ARC - July 25)


Didn't read/DNFed:

Monday, July 17, 2017

Review: The Fifth Doll

The Fifth Doll The Fifth Doll by Charlie N. Holmberg
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Charlie Holmberg is a relatively new author. I've read her Paper Magician trilogy, and it was highly original and was quite entertaining. The magic systems that she comes up with are Sanderson-esque.

The Fifth Doll is no exception. It's got a really creative and almost scary twist on magic and Russian nesting dolls.

You can read the blurb for what it's about, but basically, the main character stumbles upon a secret that a fellow townsperson is keeping, and is forced to start messing with the magic of some Russian nesting dolls. Over time, more and more is revealed, and Holmberg has done a great job of peeling back the layers of humanity, one doll at a time, to reveal that fifth doll inside.

Overall, a unique and hard to put down take on Russian folklore, magic, and seeing past the outside shells of the people around us. I'd definitely recommend this to people who like interesting magic and folklore and slow-reveal stories.

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Thursday, July 13, 2017

Review: The Magicians

The Magicians The Magicians by Lev Grossman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I'm giving this a generous 2.5 stars rounded up. The main character, and let's be honest, most of the secondary characters, weren't remotely likable. The story had great potential that felt squandered and lost in the sea of depressing and melancholy emotions that the author drenched this world in. The twisted Narnia (which I read online the author's intention was to actually use Narnia but was told he wasn't allowed) is disturbing, but still intriguing... but the nihilistic under-/over-/every-which-way-tones kinda sapped all the fun out of this story, which is sad because, as stated before, SO MUCH POTENTIAL.

I've heard book two and three eventually end up going in a better direction and overall the series is a good one... but it's hard to believe that the publishers kept this one alive long enough for a book two or three... or a tv series... but I guess that's what happens when you're a big TIME book critic. No one wants to piss you off.

2.5 stars for Alice and Josh and sometimes Penny, amazing potential, some cool magic, and an interesting, if dark, twist on Lewis' masterworks. The other stars were lost by Quentin's inability to do anything of value or show any kind of growth for longer than it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop.

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July Update, Day 13

Well, we're almost halfway through July and serious burnout (mostly from two months of hardcore reading AND a core conversion at work merging our two data processing software systems into one and the headaches that come along with that) has made this a bad reading month so far.  [Let's not also mention the newly rediscovered WoW problem... yeah, go me.]

I've only read a measly three books. Time to try to get back at least to my original pace of around ten books a month.  I can do this.  Work will not conquer me.  This reading slump will not conquer me.

Remaining on list:
A Killer Harvest by Paul Cleave (ARC - August 1)
Urban Enemies (anthology) by various authors (ARC - August 1)
The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson
The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
Indexing: Reflections by Seanan McGuire
Red Dirt Heart #4 by N. R. Walker
The Magician King by Lev Grossman
The Magician's Land by Lev Grossman
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews
White Hot by Ilona Andrews
Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Maybe:
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Sticks & Stones by Madeleine Urban and Abigail Roux
Redemption Song by Craig Schaefer
Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson
The Bands of Mourning by Brandon Sanderson
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins

Started/In Progress:
The Magicians by Lev Grossman
The Fifth Doll by Charlie Holmberg (ARC - July 25)

Finished so far:
Two Nights by Kathy Reichs
Scorpion Trap by Pippa DaCosta
The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

Didn't read/DNFed:

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Review: Scorpion Trap

Scorpion Trap Scorpion Trap by Pippa DaCosta
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was the best book in the series yet. While it didn't have some of the characters I had grown to love in it, it did have lots of Shukra (who is kickass) and some crazy twists.

Oh, also, a frickin' massive cliffhanger. So there's that. Thank goodness Pippa writes like a beast and book five will be out in August.

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Review: The Woman in Cabin 10

The Woman in Cabin 10 The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ruth Ware has crafted a Christie-esque mystery, minus some of the charm of the "olden-days" of Dame Agatha's writing.

Ware has a way with words -- she crafted some great characters and truly excelled at building the setting of the book and making it feel alive and foreboding and scary and cut off from the world.

My biggest gripe was that the first 60-70% of the book was slow, and that there was all of this buildup. We never quite got to the "Poirot rules out suspects" parts because the answer is smacked across your face in a reveal that turns this from mystery to thriller.

I did figure out what was going on -- it was fairly obvious after reading so many Christie novels and mystery/thriller, but that didn't detract from my enjoyment - it just made me more interested in seeing how it would all play out. Decent little twist at the end. :)

Overall, enjoyed it. Fun read for a beach weekend or a rainy summer day.

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Monday, July 3, 2017

July Reading Plan

July is here already!  Crazy, right?  I'm adding a new category to my plan called "maybe."  :)

Remaining on list:
The Fifth Doll by Charlie Holmberg (ARC - July 25)
A Killer Harvest by Paul Cleave (ARC - August 1)
Urban Enemies (anthology) by various authors (ARC - August 1)
The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson
The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
Indexing: Reflections by Seanan McGuire
Red Dirt Heart #4 by N. R. Walker
The Magician King by Lev Grossman
The Magician's Land by Lev Grossman
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews
White Hot by Ilona Andrews
Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Maybe:

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Sticks & Stones by Madeleine Urban and Abigail Roux
Redemption Song by Craig Schaefer
Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson
The Bands of Mourning by Brandon Sanderson

Started/In Progress:
Scorpion Trap by Pippa DaCosta
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
The Magicians by Lev Grossman

Finished so far:
Two Nights by Kathy Reichs

Didn't read/DNFed: