Keri Arthur, Dangerous Games – I have a feeling this series was meant to be a trilogy, because this forth book doesn’t quite seem to fit in with the genetic/cloning plot thread of the preceding novels. As a guardian, Riley Jenson has to shag suspects to get information out of them, and this case involves a secret sex club where death is the ultimate satisfaction. Something like that, anyway; I got confused. Quinn continues to be mega-emo here, doing nothing to dispel the vampiric stereotype. Quinn’s a bastard to Riley, yet she won’t ditch him because of the sex. Wake up, bitch: you can get it, and better, from others who aren’t so emo. Drop the whinger already!
Armistead Maupin, Michael Tolliver Lives – Methinks the author doesn’t outline, and instead writes on the fly. I say that because really his novels seem more like vignettes than proper plotted novels. Yet, I still love reading them, this one included.
Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black, The Spiderwick Chronicles #2: The Seeing Stone
Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black, The Spiderwick Chronicles #5: The Wrath of Mulgarath
Lemony Snicket, A Series of Unfortunate Events #11: The Grim Grotto – Apparently, horseradish can be substituted with wasabi. Who knew?
Scott Westerfeld, The Last Days – The author’s Midnighters and Uglies series just haven’t appealed to me. But this series is a good one: a vampire story where the V-word is rarely mentioned. Where the vampires (of sorts) aren’t emo – now that’s something to cheer about! And the readers who’ll get the most out of this are music fans – both listeners and players. (B+)
Libba Bray, A Great and Terrible Beauty
Charlaine Harris, All Together Dead – The narrator finds it ridiculous that someone is named Jodi. Right, and that’s coming from someone named Sookie. Yeah.
Dinah McCall, The Survivors – The first third was good. Then…for crying out loud, couples don’t speak like that! Real couples yell at each other, pick petty fights…not all that lovey-dovey stuff.
Kit Whitfield, Bareback – After reading so many American books, it’s nice to read an urban fantasy book by a different author – this one is English, even though her characters inhabit a fictional city. In a society where werewolves are hideously violent and definitely not living in secret, the nons – cruelly referred to as barebacks – are in charge of policing them, especially on the tense moon night. Legal adviser Lola Galley investigates as to who killed one of her best mates, but then the suspect – and likely culprit – goes missing. And it all has something to do with some questionable – illegal – medical practises. This novel is a real treat, and rare in that the author hasn’t mentioned it being part of a series (this would never happen in the U.S.). Lola is a relatable narrator with emotions and conflictions that make her real. Get ready for a great read. (B+)
Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre – Apparently, the author’s earlier work (the ‘Angrian’ stories) were all of pretty people with pretty things in pretty places. But then she decided to write about more realistic things, that more people could relate to. Jane Eyre, unlike most of today’s contemporary heroines, is plain, and so are the people around her. As for the story itself: I only read it because I liked the idea of Bertha, and she’s a very interesting character. As for the rest of the novel… quite frankly, I only managed to finish it because I was hoping for more Bertha scenes: I was disappointed.