Okay, so I have read far more books than I have had time to review. I have been swamped with work, PhD and life in general. Also, I am DROWNING in the amount of books I have to churn through – I swear for every book I read I buy 5 and then put holds on another three at the local library. This is my crazy bookshelf that probably houses a third of my book collection (they also hide under the stairs, in storage, and under the bed)
Therefore, I thought I would post a list of books I have read so far this year with a quick recommendation and rating. Somehow, I think I need to forget life and just keep reading like a madwoman to get through all this booky-goodness
Revealed by P.C & Kristen Cast
This is the latest House of Night novel. I feel like I am now just reading the new installments because I have invested so much time with the series, and not that I actually enjoy them. I find that the authors are now trying too hard to capture teenager-lingo and it is now coming off as really false and pretentious. Also, I understand that Aphrodite is the callous one of the group, but deep deep down she has a warm, gooey core – but I actually find the use of explicit language doesn’t add much more to her character. The story line is lacking and I have enjoyed the spin-off novellas much more than the actual novels. I would give Revealed a 1 out of 5
Shroud of Sorrow by Tommy Donbavand (Doctor Who)
I love Doctor Who novels as they are easy to read, enjoyable and are usually written in a way that almost feels you are watching a Doctor Who episode. I am not much of a Matt Smith fan, but that still doesn’t stop me from enjoying the craziness of Doctor Who. I enjoyed this book, although it did deal with sorrowful themes. It was fast-paced and intriguing. I would give Shroud of Sorrow 3.5 out of 5 (only because sometimes I felt the storyline was a bit lacking, but still enjoyable).
The Lost by Claire McGowan
I loved this crime novel. It had so many twists and plots and was fast-paced and had the feel of an authentic Irish crime novel. I loved it so much that I hunted down more of her books to read. I would give The Lost 4 out of 5.
A Song for the Dying by Stuart MacBride
Ah … Stuart MacBride – the day I discovered your work was amazing. I almost feel this needs a review all on its own. The only issue with this book was that it felt like I had waited for it so long, that I had forgotten what had happened in his previous works. Despite that, I love the nitty gritty of MacBride’s works, the full-on in your face depravity. I give this book 4.5 out of 5. If you love crime and haven’t read MacBride, then I strongly recommend you do so (but be warned of Flesh House still leaves me a bit queasy).
Hades by Candace Fox
I felt like there was a lot of hype with his novel, which almost didn’t live up to it. While it wasn’t quite the crime masterpiece I was expecting, it still delivered a punch. I am looking forward to the follow-up novel as by the time you reach then end of Hades you were addicted and so disappointed that it had ended. I would give Hades 4 out of 5.
In the Blood by Lisa Unger
Fast-paced and twist after twist. I thought this was a fantastic read. It was intriguing and left me guessing. The character development was well done. I would give In the Blood 4 out of 5.
Ripper by Isabel Allende
This was another book that was surrounded by a lot of hype. However, I felt that it didn’t live up to it. It was painful to read – so slow going and character development and sideline stories that didn’t add that much to the overall story. While it did get me to sympathise with the death of the characters, I felt much more annoyed that I had invested so much time in a book where the climax and resolution was over in a few chapters. I also thought that the characters playing the Ripper RPG was unrealistic – as if a policeman (even if it was a relative) would divulge highly confidential information knowing that it would be repeated online to other individuals. This wasn’t a book for me and not one that I would recommend. I would give Ripper a 1 out of 5.
The Girl with All the Gifts by M. R. Carey
This was a fantastic read – and not what I was expecting. I picked it up without knowing what it was about only that it was recommended for people who had enjoyed The Passage, and it my blonde-moment, I didn’t even click. So this novel was an absolute surprise and delight. I remember getting to when the kids have their arms untied to eat a bowl of grubs and thinking ‘is this some twisted government child abuse novel’. I think it’s an excellent new addition to the zombie category and one that added more in such a wonderful way. It asked a lot of questions regarding morals and what we would do in particular situations. I would give The Girl with All the Gifts 5 out of 5.
March (so far)
Beautiful Chaos by Gary Russell (Doctor Who)
Oh my tenth Doctor, how I love thee. It was great to have Donna back in some form. Her snappy comebacks and the tenth Doctor’s manner work so well together. This was a fast-paced Doctor Who addition with a lot going on. I loved it and would give it 4 out of 5.