Paperback Book vs. Amazon Kindle (Photo credit: MegMoggington)
I read a mix of paper and glue and ebooks this month, with mixed reviews. My kindle is still stuffed full of material and toward the end of the month that plus overwhelming life events led to me not reading at all. I played the free kindle blackjack game instead. I really needed some undemanding chill-out entertainment. Here’s what I read last month:
Fury’s Kiss by Karen Chance
Urban fantasy, mostly vampires and fae. Book 3 of the Midnight’s Daughter series (which is a spin-off of the Cassie Palmer series). Don’t try to read this out of order — this one was confusing even when read in order. Under all the action, Dori (our half-human, half-vamp protagonist) is dealing with her dual nature, learning to accept the parts of herself she doesn’t much like. She’s also working toward forgiving her father (there are 500 years of Daddy issues built up). There’s tons of action and a dash of romance, but it’s a mish-mash. For fans of the series, it’s a good read.
Kitty Steals The Show by Carrie Vaughn
The ninth (?) book in the Kitty Norville series. Urban fantasy, mainly werewolves and vamps. The series ebbs and flows; this one flowed with lots of action, good characters, and good set-up for future installments. I’m getting sick of the vampire “long game” story line, so I hope it wraps up soon. I much prefer how Kitty, an unwilling werewolf, deals with hard choices and standing up for herself.
Shadows Before The Sun by Kelly Gay
Book 4 in the Charlie Madigan series. Urban fantasy set in Atlanta. This series has fantasy characters, like sirens and djinn, but the supernatural elements are secondary to the character development and plot. This series started with promise and each book just gets better (so far). The characters grow, the worlds expand, the baddies get even badder. This one wraps up some big plot points from the previous books and leaves breadcrumbs for coming adventures. There’s a strand of romance after the heroine gets divorced and the fate of her scumbag ex makes me think the author got a bit of literary revenge. Definitely read in order.
When Pigs Fly by Bob Sanchez (kindle freebie)
Very Elmore Leonard-like with a large cast of looney characters who intertwine. There’s a fair amount of violence that’s played a bit too lightly for my taste (beating up old people?!?). Overall, very entertaining. Best character was Poindexter the javelina.
Just Add Water (Hetta Coffey Mystery Series – Book 1) by Jinx Schwartz (kindle freebie)
I enjoyed this book, set in San Francisco, even though there was more boat information than I’ll ever need or want (and I live in a coastal state!). The mystery was a bit light at the end and there’s a sad (but realistic) storyline about the pet dog. A good read.
Moonlighting in Vermont (The Bree MacGowan Series – Book 1) by Kate George (kindle freebie)
I don’t know if I scrambled this series up on my kindle or Amazon released the freebies out of order, but I read book 2 a couple of months ago, so this one was a bit spoiled for me. Otherwise, entertaining.
Sara’s Game by Ernie Lindsey (kindle freebie)
Non-stop action with a relatable heroine and a nut-job bad guy. My only complaint was the ending seemed a bit rushed with a twist in the final two pages that was unsatisfying. Kudos to the author for professional editing. Really enjoyed this one.
Pompomberry House by Rosen Trevithick (kindle freebie)
Satirical British murder mystery about a group on indie authors. Entertaining but weird. The cliches lose their charm after awhile, even as satire.
The Easy Way To Clean: How To Clean Your House Using A 3x Faster Method by Ian Stables (kindle freebie)
A short, very basic book of questionable usefulness. The first half outlines how to clean: pick up the trash and throw it out; pile up everything that doesn’t belong in the room you’re cleaning and put it all away where it does belong; soak whatever’s dirty (dishes, the floor, etc.) in soap and water. The second half of the book is decluttering: spend 15 minutes every day getting rid of things you don’t need or use. Once you’ve whittled down your hoard, tidy as you go. Not terrible advice, just obvious.
Dying To Get Published (The Jennifer Marsh Mysteries) by Judy Fitzwater (kindle freebie)
The first (I think) in a series featuring an aspiring writer heroine. This cozy mystery is set in Georgia and moves between cities there. What starts as endearing soon becomes cutesy and cloying. Jennifer’s writing group is great, with well-developed characters, but the romance is a thrown together afterthought. Meh.
Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead (A Niki Slobodian Novel: Book 3) by J.L. Murray (free from the kindle owner’s lending library)
Urban fantasy. I didn’t like this one as well as the first two books. Reminded me of the tv show “Supernatural” with angels, demons, and the apocalypse. It was sad and emotionally unsatisfying. May be setting up the next book.
The Ugly Duchess by Eloisa James
I’m no longer a huge fan of historical romance, but I do love Eloisa James. Her characters are so well written, they feel like friends. (Julia Quinn is really good at this, too.) Unfortunately, this book fell flat. The book is in two parts: Before and After. The After feels rushed and gimmicky. I didn’t connect with the heroine or the plot as well as in her previous books. This is a fairy tale redux and the “ugly” moniker made me cringe. It’s not horrible, just not a keeper.
Eye of The Witch (Detective Marcella Witch’s Series – Book 2) by Dana Donovan (kindle freebie)
Ugh. Might’ve been better if I’d read book 1, but I doubt it. Paranormal mystery with witches. Crazy-ass shenanigans that were explained in supernatural psycho-babble. Fraught with typos and grammatical errors which makes understanding the babble all that much harder. Skip it.
Read any good books lately? Share your favorite recent reads in the comments!