Fantasy/Paranormal · Graphic Novels/Comics · Thriller/Horror

Death Note – Tsugumi Ohba, Takeshi Obata

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| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ |

Goodreads synopsis: Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects–and he’s bored out of his mind. But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. Will Light’s noble goal succeed, or will the Death Note turn him into the very thing he fights against?

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My thoughts:

“The death god is quite funny even though he looks like something taken from nightmares.”

I find myself split in my opinion about the first volume of Death Note. I actually don’t like the main character that much and usually you are supposed to do that so I’m quite confused. The main characters is supposed to be the hero you are rooting for and wish the best of luck to. But Light is no hero. He started something with good intentions but later turns just as bad as the bad guys he is targeting. In the end he is no better than those criminals he’s erasing from this world. The death god is quite funny even though he looks like something taken from nightmares.

And the story is good and exciting. I really like the way it is built, the artwork and the feel of the book. It ended when the suspense was at its peak and I just had to throw myself on my phone to order the next on in the series. Its that good. Now I just have to wait two weeks for the second one to arrive. hehe

I’m not an avid reader of graphic novels but I’m beginning to understand the appeal and I really recommending this one.

Fantasy/Paranormal · Romance

Lover revealed – J.R Ward

42898| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Butch O’Neal is a fighter by nature. A hard-living ex-homicide cop, he’s the only human ever to be allowed in the inner circle of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. And he wants to go even deeper into the vampire world—to engage in the turf war with the lessers. He’s got nothing to lose. His heart belongs to a female vampire, an aristocratic beauty who’s way out of his league. If he can’t have Marissa, then at least he can fight side by side with the Brothers…

Fate curses him with the very thing he wants. When Butch sacrifices himself to save a civilian vampire from the slayers, he falls prey to the darkest force in the war. Left for dead, he’s found by a miracle, and the Brotherhood calls on Marissa to bring him back. But even her love may not be enough to save him…

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My thoughts:

“He is like the perfect character with a moral compass always pointing in the right directions but still this ruff , broken and hurting man with an hell of a history.”

This was quite a hard review to write. I feel kind of indifferent toward it. I really liked to read about Butch aka. Cop O’Neal and Marissa, but at the same time I do not feel much for the story itself. The dynamic of the characters around and in the Black Dagger Brotherhood is still as fantastic as usual. There is also some characters outside of the brotherhood who we are learning to know more and more. But the rest is starting to be somewhat repetitive and bored me out most of the times.

I love Butch. He is like the perfect character with a moral compass always pointing in the right directions but still this ruff , broken and hurting man with an hell of a history. It was even better to really get to know him and learn about his history and the plot twist made sense and fit perfectly. Marissa however I did not like as much in the beginning. But when she finally took a firm grip of her own life and “grew” a spine, she also grew on me.

My favorite part of the book is however the virginity thing.  This is probably the first time I have ever read a realistic telling about the first time and that it is not perfect for many women. That you get just a little pain but after a couple of strokes an explosive orgasm is braking through your body. No! Come on! Ward did a great job with an realistic telling about the emotions and confusion and I just feel it somewhat ironic that it is where the character is a vampire. They are supposed to be bad asses. But I’m not complaining. At least I now know that there is one book out there who have it somewhat realistic and not a fantasy.

Fantasy/Paranormal · Fiction/Science Fiction · Romance

A discovery of witches – Deborah Harkness

41952734| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Deep in the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure lost for centuries-and she is the only creature who can break its spell.

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My thoughts:

“The only thing I discovered was that no matter what “world” you try to place a romance story in, if you do not decide one thread to follow, it will not succeed.”

At first I thought this would be a solid five star book. But then I got a couple of hundred pages in and the author has completely abandon the original plot. That took away a star but thinking, hey it can still be good. Reading a couple of hundred more pages and now even the “love” story is so over dramatic that I started to wonder, wasn’t this supposed to be an adult romance and not a YA? Goodbye another star. I’m over 400 pages into it and it feels too late to stop now and I keep hoping for Harkness to take her common sense together and save it in the end. It can’t be possible that so many of my people on Goodreads love the book but me however not so much. I feel the need for this to be a success. However that never happens and it even gets worse.

I was hoping for an action filled, non-cheesy, paranormal romance with some substance. What I got was a highly dramatic, slow and puzzling love story, cloaked in the “discovery” of witches, vampires and daemons. Written like an YA book with every angst filled thought possible but with an analytic mind, a lot of history and details. The only thing I discovered was that no matter what “world” you try to place a romance story in, if you do not decide one thread to follow, it will not succeed. It was all over the place and Harkness should have stayed with the alchemical manuscript and the dynamic of the world with witches, vampires and daemons and left it at that.

Even though it ended quite interesting with some time traveling and other loose threads, it is not enough for me to feel the need to pick up the second book in the series. I will more likely watch the series instead, but don’t count on it.

Fantasy/Paranormal · Romance

Lover awakened – J.R. Ward

42900| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly war raging between vampires and their slayers. And there exists a secret band of brothers like no other – six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Of these, Zsadist is the most terrifying member of the Black Dagger Brotherhood.

A former blood slave, the vampire Zsadist still bears the scars from a past filled with suffering and humiliation. Renowned for his unquenchable fury and sinister deeds, he is a savage feared by humans and vampires alike. Anger is his only companion, and terror is his only passion—until he rescues a beautiful aristocrat from the evil Lessening Society.

Bella is instantly entranced by the seething power Zsadist possesses. But even as their desire for one another begins to overtake them both, Zsadist’s thirst for vengeance against Bella’s tormentors drives him to the brink of madness. Now, Bella must help her lover overcome the wounds of his tortured past, and find a future with her…

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My thoughts: You got to love those angst filled, save him, save her, type of romantic suspense books. This one is even in the paranormal category. I absolutely love the characters. I love how vulnerable they are even though they are vampires. They can easily be hurt or even die. I liked Bella a little less than I thought I would. She seemed so much older in the last book where you meet her. But she is a lot younger than you though and that shines through. In some occasion I liked it, in others not so much. Zsadist, gosh I hate the names in this series, was such a complicated character. He is deep with a lot of hurt in him. He is so far gone that even himself thinks he is a goner. But no, there is so much more in his core, just waiting and it certainly gave the whole book some serious depth. The history, memories and relationship with his brothers and friends certainly makes the book come alive and the building of future books is so greatly done. I did however not like Phury’s part of the plot that much. But I do not need to get into that. I do hope, when I come to his book, that it will be a lot better than I feel it would be right now.

Overall this is a page turner. It is exciting, captivating and astonishing. very little predictability and a lot of questions who you get all the answers to. It ended just perfect, with happy tears and all. And no cliffhanger. 🙂

Fantasy/Paranormal · Romance

Lover eternal – J.R. Ward

35729| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly turf war raging between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Possessed by a deadly beast, Rhage is the most dangerous of the Black Dagger Brotherhood.

Within the brotherhood, Rhage is the vampire with the strongest appetites. He’s the best fighter, the quickest to act on his impulses, and the most voracious lover-for inside him burns a ferocious curse cast by the Scribe Virgin. Owned by this dark side, Rhage fears the time when his inner dragon is unleashed, making him a danger to everyone around him.

Mary Luce, a survivor of many hardships is unwittingly thrown into the vampire world and reliant on Rhage’s protection. With a life-threatening curse of her own, Mary is not looking for love. She lost her faith in miracles years ago. But when Rhage’s intense animal attraction turns into something more emotional, he knows that he must make Mary his alone. And while their enemies close in, Mary fights desperately to gain life eternal with the one she loves…

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My thoughts: Warning for a small rant. I will try to keep it on the down low. It was a good book. A real page turner. But not as good as the first book and as I’m thinking now, not as good as the third book. Yes I had to jump right into the next one since it ended on a cliffhanger and I just had to know how it would end.

I never really fell for the characters. The love story is overused and quite predictable. When the side characters are more interesting than the main characters, there is clearly something not working for me. I didn’t really like Mary and Rhage didn’t do anything for me. I remember Rhage, from the first book, as a funny, sexy, devilish, and charming character. Now he is just whiny and feels sorry for himself. Yeah, yeah! You have a curse. Boohoo! Get over it and move on. You have had a couple of hundred years so you should have been miles ahead by now. But yeah, it was just so repetitive.

I really liked the plot however and how the lessers had a big part and how all the other characters just built up to the story of the third book. It was interesting and quite captivating. The ending came a little fast but it made it easy for me to just throw myself right into the next one.

I really like Wards writing and her version of Vampires which feels just so right. This one was not a favorite but I still like the series and hopes the third one will be even better.

Fantasy/Paranormal · Mystery/Crime · Romance · Suspense · Thriller/Horror

If looks could kill – Heather Graham

731806.jpg| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Madison Adair didn’t witness her famous mother’s brutal murder. But she saw it. Saw the gloved hand…felt the knife strike…knew her mother’s terror.

That was a lifetime ago. But the nightmares have returned; only, this time they’re of a faceless serial killer stalking women in south Florida. A killer she can’t see but who knows she is watching. Surrounded by her family, Madison knows she should feel safe, but she doesn’t.

And how much can FBI agent Kyle Montgomery protect her, when he can’t let go of the past they’ve shared? Madison is Kyle’s only link to the killer, but can they find the truth before the killer strikes again? Because sometimes, it’s what–or who–you can’t see that holds the greatest danger….

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My thoughts: Nah! Nothing for me. Quite the same as always. Horrible history, broken hearts, murder mystery, stalker, new killings, FBI, macho man, irritating female protagonist and a situation that just feels dumb. Come on, they hardly talk but they do argue a lot. About the same thing over and over. If they actually had talked early in the beginning, the arguing would probably not have been as bad. And I probably would have liked the book a lot more.

It was a fast read without any real depth. The murder mystery was quite interesting, but you didn’t receive any clues to who the killer are so the whole guessing game for me fell flat. Oh Graham certainly tried to make other characters seem guilty but it was too obvious so I actually dismissed them from my “who the killer is” list early on.

Not overly fawn over the characters either. There is some stuff happening that just make you lose the respect for that character and creates a situation that is just awkward. To be quite frank, Kaila and Dan (two side characters) relationship and short chapters about them, are the one thing I actually liked and felt had the most depth. And the book was not even about them.

It is probably time to realize that Graham is not an author for me. I have read five of her books but not one of them have received a higher rating than 3 star. Average rating is 2.8. It is time to spell the flowers and confess to myself that it doesn’t matter how much the synopsis appeal to me, she is just not an author that I like to read. Unfortunately.

Adult fiction/Erotica · Fantasy/Paranormal · Fiction/Science Fiction · Mystery/Crime · Suspense · Thriller/Horror

Bird box – Josh Malerman

18498558.jpg| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat–blindfolded–with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

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My thoughts: I had such a bad luck with this book. Me and a friend started a BookClub since we could not find one here where we live. The first book we choosed to read was Bird Box. It was supposed to be Novembers book. But I could not get hold of a copy in a bookstore. So I ordered one online and the order was cancelled due to empty stock. I ordered from another web store, same thing there. Note that by this time, two weeks had already passed. I tried to order it to a bookstore in town, but the system was down. In a last attempt I ordered a different format from the first place I ordered from. After a couple of days I received note that the book had been shipped. Hallelujah. I may still have time to read it since this was around 15 of November. However due to Christmas, it took longer than usual for the book to arrive. I actually started to think that it had gotten lost in shipping. But on the 3 of December it finally arrived. 18 days after I ordered it, a month after I ordered the first time. But I still had time to read it. Our club meeting is on Thursday 6 of December. It gave me three days. Would I make it?

Well I did And i’m so happy that I finally received the book. It was so much better than I had predicted. Malerman did a great job writing a book, solely relaying on sensory other than image description. Sound and feel descriptions, emotion and imagination build most of the book. It creates a really spooky feeling while reading. It reminds you how vulnerable we would be without our eyes and it certainly reminds you of all your childhood fears. Remember those? The terror you as a child felt for not what you could see, but what you could not see. The monster under the bed, the beast in the closet. The creatures outside your window, just waiting to eat all the small children, not laying in bed at night. It is an emotional read where even you as an adult do feel discomfort to some degree. And I loved it.

Unfortunately I did have some problem with the writing. Malerman keep referring them by names ALL THE TIME. I’m not kidding that Malories name was mentioned on the same page at least fifteen times. If he had used words like “her”, “she”, “him”, “that”, “it” and so on, would have eased up the flow of the text considerably. After fifty pages you don’t think about it anymore, but it bugged the hell out of me in the beginning and when a book only is 250 pages, you do not want to be bugged one quarter of it. And I have thoughts about the end. I will however not discuss it here due to spoilers. But either way, the book is certainly worth reading and I’m happy that I finally got to.

Fantasy/Paranormal · Romance

In the company of wolves – Paige Tyler

25391400.jpg| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: He opened his mouth to order her to drop the MP5 she had aimed at him, but nothing would come out. It was like she’d robbed him of the ability to speak. Shooting her wasn’t an option, though. And the idea of arresting her didn’t make him feel any better.

There’s a new gang of criminals in town who are organized and ruthless in the extreme. When Eric Becker, along with the rest of the Dallas SWAT team, ends up in the middle of a shootout, he immediately senses werewolves-a lot of them. Turns out, the new bad guys are a pack of wolf shifters.

In a spray of gunfire, Becker comes face-to-face with the most gorgeous woman he’s ever seen. Becker does the logical thing. He hides her and leaves the scene with the rest of his team.

Jayna Winston has no idea why that SWAT guy helped her, but she’s glad he did. Ever since she and her pack mates got mixed up with those Eastern European mobsters, everything had pretty much fallen apart.

So what’s a street-savvy thief like Jayna going to do with a hot alpha-male wolf who’s a police officer?

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My thoughts: With a truly fantastic start we are once again thrown into this action packed story with clean cut and deep characters that are introduced in a way I really enjoyed. It was nice to once again meet some of the characters from the earlier books but still the focus was mostly on Becker and the new pack in town. It did however dropped off for me after approximately half way through and I did find the storyline somewhat thin. It did not keep up the heat and did not in the end deliver that punch I had expected and learned to associate with Paige Tyler.

It is not a bad book by far but it is not the best one either. A solid 3 star rating and I do like it. And the best part is actually that Tyler have put more energy on the werewolf mythology and we are introduced to other parts and aspects of the history. Beside Alphas we are also introduced to Betas and Omegas and there was some exciting twists. So I’m satisfied by that read and can recommend it.

 

 

Fantasy/Paranormal · Fiction/Science Fiction · Thriller/Horror · Young, New adult/College

The graveyard book – Neil Gaiman

2213661.jpg| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod’s family…

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My thoughts: Cute story but maybe a little too easy for me. It is a young adult book but had maybe not expected it to be that young in all aspects. Cute characters, interesting plot and I like the way Gaiman have written it. There is some aspects of the story that you do not get a full explanation about but you do get a lot of clues to make your own thoughts and mind about it. It wakes the desire to discuss the book, its meaning, its plot and all that around. I can see how this would be a perfect book in discussion classes in school and such.

I really liked Nobody. He has this charming, naivete that puts him in situations where he certainly not should be and he resolves those situations either by himself or help from those who tries to protect him. It is funny and light if you do not think too much or try to analyse more than that.

I don’t have so much more to say. I really liked the beginning and the end was satisfying yet sad, but didn’t care to much about the middle to be honest.

Fantasy/Paranormal · Fiction/Science Fiction · Thriller/Horror

HEX – Thomas Olde Heuvelt

31560400| GOODREADS | MY RATING: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥|

Goodreads synopsis: Whoever is born here, is doomed to stay ’til death. Whoever settles, never leaves.

Welcome to Black Spring, the seemingly picturesque Hudson Valley town haunted by the Black Rock Witch, a 17th century woman whose eyes and mouth are sewn shut. Muzzled, she walks the streets and enters your homes at will. She stands next to your bed for nights on end. Everybody knows that her eyes may never be opened.

The elders of Black Spring have virtually quarantined the town by using high-tech surveillance to prevent their curse from spreading. Frustrated with being kept in lockdown, the town’s teenagers decide to break their strict regulations and go viral with the haunting, but in so doing send the town spiraling into the dark, medieval practices of the past.

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My thoughts: Two nights in a row I have been dreaming about the wicked Witch of Black Spring. She have sneaked her way into the back of my mind and taken control in a way I have never experienced before. I’m not easily scared and specially not by books. And certainly not in a way where I actually wakes up, in the middle of the night with a racing hart and with a feeling that I don’t want to sleep anymore. I can feel discomfort and such but never really fear.  I wouldn’t call this one a scary horror either but it’s still an unpleasant book in the way that it was uncomfortable and mesmerizing at the same time.

Well written with an really interesting and suitable history and backstory. The details fit together nicely and in a way that it did not feel exaggerated or cheap. The original story takes place in a Dutch town but when the rights for the English version was sold it was decided to move the settings to a Hudson Valley and change the ending. That is two major difference between the original story compared to the translated one. According some forum threads I found, there is no big difference and has no great significance. Since I’m never gonna read the dutch version, it really doesn’t matter to me.

There is a lot of mixed feelings toward this book out there and my own are probably more on the good side than the average. I found the book complex and deeper than I first thought. A little obsessive with tits, breast and nipples but hey it is a guy who have written it after all. I liked the ending (even though I hate it) and I like how it makes you think. It compels you to seek deeper and read between the lines. A book which awakens feelings and questions and do need to be discussed because it is all in the way it is interpreted.