2019 Reading Challenge

2019 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 0 books toward her goal of 200 books.
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Book Review: A Predator and a Psychopath by Jay Kerk

As others have pointed out, this is not a book for the timid. The opening segment, in which we find Jason righteously indignant in a mental institution, was my favorite bit of the book. I thoroughly enjoyed the way his tale was unfolding – or seemed to be. Then things got weird, and from there I struggled with the book.

I don’t mind back-and-forth narrators; they can be tricky to deliver in a way that feels organic in the swap and the way details are provided, but I appreciate that they are often necessary to give the appropriate depth to a story. The problem for me is that one of them – Jerry – is abhorrent and his sections of the book were very hard to read. Continue reading Book Review: A Predator and a Psychopath by Jay Kerk

Book Review: All the Better Part of Me by Molly Ringle

This was SO not what I was expecting after the Goblins of Bellwater… I don’t know why I expected magic again, or the lyric prose of GoB. I read the blurb, I knew what this one was about – and it was decidedly NOT the same type of story. Still, I loved the writing in Goblins so much that I would pretty much have agreed to read Ringle’s grocery list just to fall back into one of her lushly crafted, wholly original worlds.

This one is VERY different. Not in a bad way. Not in a good way. Just very different. This is a wholly realistic, utterly grounded-in-reality tale about realizing who you are and what you want out of life, and realizing that the labels that people (both you and others) want to put on those things don’t matter in the end – what matters is being who you are. Continue reading Book Review: All the Better Part of Me by Molly Ringle

Book Review Blurb: The Extinction Agenda by Michael Laurence

Don’t let this short review fool you – I LOVED this one. This was an extraordinary book, full of everything that makes a thriller fun for me – conspiracy, bioterrorism, shadow governments, one guy who figures it all out then assembles a team of good bad guys to help him resolve it… It reminded me a little of the Dean Koontz Jane Hawk series – not in any derivative way AT ALL, but because it’s another story in which one good (with just enough street cred to know the right bad guys to help) guy finds himself enmeshed in something huge and scary and world-altering and uses his considerable wiles to save the day. The writing is great – perfectly paced, elegantly plotted and full of characters that leap off the page and grab you by the throat. My only complaint is that it ended – seriously, I could have read another thousand pages without blinking an eye… It ends on a great note – setting up the next book with plenty still on the table but nothing dangling off in a way that felt abrupt or unfinished. There’s a lot more to this story, as hinted both throughout and at the end, and I for one cannot WAIT to see how it plays out!

My review copy was provided by the publisher via NetGalley.

Book Review: Pet by Akwaeke Emezi

What an incredible story this was! I am on a binge of Nigerian-authored stories lately; there seems to be a lyricism to the storytelling style that permeates even though the individual authors’ writings are very different.

This is a marvelous story. I’ve seen some reviews comment on the audience, the simplicity, and the messaging. I don’t often pay attention to the “intended” audience; if I’m intrigued by a cover/blurb/author, I’ll read the book regardless of who it is meant for, unless I find myself getting lost (in a bad way) in that intent. I found this story to flow beautifully. Continue reading Book Review: Pet by Akwaeke Emezi

Book Review: Sword and Pen by Rachel Caine

I LOVED this series!! I am beyond sorry to see it end, but what an ending…

The Great Library is on its last legs. Enemies are closing in on all sides. The team is facing unbelievable new provocations, threats, and opportunities. And merciful heavens, did they – and the story – rise to the challenge!

This has been an incredible series, with exemplary world-building and characterization. Caine has done a remarkable job with it, and I think it is by far her strongest, best work. In this final installment the action and tension are ramped up to an almost unbearable level, yet she manages to tap-dance among land mines, keeping her cast moving forward at levels that exceed previous expectations – and that’s no small feat AT ALL. Continue reading Book Review: Sword and Pen by Rachel Caine

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