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I read a lot of books and I write about them on here. Mummy Geek is sometimes a guest blogger....people seem to love her.....Oh and you can find me on Twitter.....@book_geek_says. Shortlisted for Blog of the Year by the 2015 Love Stories Awards...THANK YOU!!

Wednesday 30 July 2014

Review: The Dark Palace

Price: £ 9.04 ebook
Publisher: Creme de la Crime

I read The Mannequin House last year and it was the first time I had encountered Quinn, and I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I'm sad to say, that this one hasn't gone down so well. I'm not 100% sure if I've missed a book in between and if that would make a difference to what I'm about to say. If so I apologise now!

Quinn and his team are charged with watching the Germans and through this task they fall in to something allllll together different.

This story wasn't as gripping as TMH, by any stretch of the imagination. It all felt rather far fetched and there were no clear threads as to where we were going and why. The language and the actions were also not like before and I could clearly see the modern influence. This was a great shame as TMH could have easily been written in the early 1910s and not even stepped foot in the here and now once. 

When it comes to Quinn, I was totally in love with him last time, but now he seems rather wet and weedy. He is too trigger happy, too much of a dick for anyone to like him be they colleague or suspect or lodger. Macadam and Inch came in to their own a bit more and I was delighted to see that...they are rather spiffing characters in their own special way.

When it came to the film people and the perps, I think they were all too caricatured for the nature of what was going on. Well...I say that of the film people. When it came to the perps, I would have liked them to have been a bit more involved and for them to have been presented a bit more often so one could have got to know them and more thoroughly understand what they were doing. 

So, sad to say I didn't enjoy this all that much. I do again apologise if it is because I've missed a book at some point. I'm sure however, that die hard Quinn fans will love it to pieces.

Happy Reading


Monday 28 July 2014

Review: The Book Of Life

Price: £ 16.00 hardback
Publisher: Headline

Those who have read my blog for a long long while will know that I loved A Discovery of Witches but was rather non-plussed about Shadow of Night. Also, you will possibly notice that, unlike usual, I have written these reviews in clear bullet points. To keep with the All Souls Trilogy tradition, I'm going to do it here too.
What I did like...

  • There is some recap which I was pleased with seeing as I read the last book around 2 years ago. 
  • I think Chris is a totally amazing character and I love the nick names he develops for people, hours of joy. Also, even though he isn't a very major character, he lights up the book.
  • The unexpected appearance of a character from book two was amazing. It was a rather cracking twist and totally unexpected all round.
  • Yasbeau is still a babe and is even more in control, terrifying and awesome than she was in the first two books...and I didn't think that possible. 
  • The flicking of points of view between and even within chapters was a great relief!!

What I didn't like...
  • Diana is even more bloody wet and doormatish than she was before!! I struggle to accept how much her personality and independence has chanced so quickly.
  • There recaps that were offered were not quite enough seeing as the last book was out two years ago.
  • Some of the narrative and conversations were so patronising.
  • The plot seemed to drag and drag and drag and the concept of time was completely bemusing.
  • The end, when it did come, was rushed and it could have been brilliant as it was the part that I had been waiting for. Instead it was insipid due to the speed of execution. 

Overall I feel that this trilogy has been a let down. The first book entered in a blaze of glory with strong and interesting characters and fantastically different ideas on what it meant to be witch, human or vampire. However, as the books went on I can't help but feel that focus was lost and the books were just written for the sake of ending the story. I had high, high hopes and they have been dashed. 

I'm sure there are people who will no doubt love all three, but I'm not one of them. 

Happy Reading


Monday 21 July 2014

Review: The Sons of Macha, Shadowmagic book 3

Price: £ 3.99 ebook
Publisher: The Friday Project

The final instalment of Shadowmagic. I'm distraught that it is now allllll over, but I am delighted to have read it! YAY!

We are back in The Land and shit is about to get real as there is so much to do and so many people who have missions to complete.

Ruby is the best character in the world, I actually love her. If you want a bad ass kid who is funny and intelligent then she is your girl. Also, sticking with characters, we have seen Connor grow up and change throughout these three books and that's been rather nice. It's like you get to know him and he becomes one of your bezzies. It's really rather lovely. 

As for the plot, it's jam packed and has a purpose from the offing and it is also a wholly spiffing, acceptable and top notch end to a trilogy I have enjoyed in so many ways. You will find satisfactory conclusions as well as yet more tragedy and woe....but don't worry the fun is still in there too.

Delighted to have read this series and I hope that these guys and The Land comes back again some day to bring more joy to us all here in the Real World.

Happy Reading


P.S. what the hell is it with the constant Nike references? Is JL sponsored by them or summit????

Friday 18 July 2014

Review: Infidel

Price: £ 8.99
Publisher: Del Ray

I'm back in the world of scifi....scifi and fantasy seem to be calling me ATM!!

Anyway, everyone is basically a badass, there are bel dames (assassin army type women), ex bel dames, ex crooks, fugitives, ex fugitives, spies, ex spies...I could go on...and it's alllllllll about to kick off big style.

The characters in this book are excellent. They have perfectly formed pasts, they have layers and are constructed with finesse. Rarely do you get thrown in to a book such as this and feel like you know characters intimately within the first 100 pages. Nyx is terrifying but awesome and I have completely fallen in love with Rhys. 

The world that these guys all live in is great also. It let my imagination run wild and I thoroughly enjoy that about books. The descriptions of the world and the people in it were brilliant and I thought that was great. I think it's because the places were so normal...the people in them and the bugs and the magic etc weren't so normal, but that is what gave this book it's edge. So normal it's weird!

The only thing I have to criticise is the plot. For a while, the actual plot wasn't that discernible and I thought that that was either because this was more a set of character studies, in depth looks at people type book, or there were going to be more than one and this was setting the scene. I was disappointed when the plot appeared in the last 70(ish) pages and was very rushed through. Also, the background to why there was the war and why boys were bread for the front and never returned really wasn't explained and that annoyed me. I would have loved it to have everything to have been extrapolated slowly from the start as, if taken more slowly, it could have been rather good. Also, I don't think that woman on the front of the book looks anything like Nyx and what she would wear.

Overall, this book had so much potential! The world and characters that have been created are brilliant! The plot just lacked at the start and was rushed when it turned up. I'd be interested to find out what others think.

Happy Reading


Wednesday 16 July 2014

Review: Barricade

Publisher: Gollancz
Price: £ 14.99

It's the future, it's terrifying and Kenstibec has a cab job he needs to complete......regardless.

The world has basically gone to shit in this book and it's not 100% clear who to blame. The ficials and the reals are at war and no one can really understand it in the novel either as all purpose and direction seems to be lost. This is a cracking scifi premise....all wrapped up in the above mentioned taxi journey.

The plot is gripping...there is no other word for it as this is possibly the world's most epic road trip. The characters are not many, but they are awesome and the relationship developments between fatty and the ficials (particularly K) is totally awesome! The King of Newcastle was also so incredibly grotesque that I actually felt my skin crawl on occasion!

The twists and turns of the plot are pretty epic and the flashbacks are brill. They hint at a bit of what has happened but not so much that they bog you down and leave you thinking you know everything there is to know about this future world! There are so many questions!!!!

This really is a terrifying book as this type of thing could potentially happen. Well maybe not the created human(ish) things, but we could so VERY easily destroy all we have and end up fighting each other for reasons we completely forget.

A great scifi read with brilliant characters and a fantastically well executed plot. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was a really pleasant surprise as I didn't really know 100% what to expect and it's defo one that will stick with me for a while.

Happy Reading


Monday 14 July 2014

Review: Prince of Hazel and Oak - Shadowmagic Book 2

Publisher: The Friday Project
Price: £ 2.48 ebook

So this is part 2 of the Shadowmagic trilogy. It picks up not long after the first one and we are immediately thrust in to action in The Real World and it is awesome and we do pretty soon return to The Land! YAY!!!

There were very few rewinds which pleased me as recaps bug me, and as I had read book 1 in May, things were still fresh in my mind. The plot centres round an awesome and epic quest. It's funny, action packed and the comedy fantasy style is indeed a winner with me, however, this one isn't without a bit of sadness which was unexpected but really dealt with very well indeed and brought the book a bit more down to earth.

The characters and plot are again awesome and the new characters that arrive are just as fab as the ones we already knew from book one.

Usually I don't jump in to reading the next book in a series straight after finishing the previous one, but in this instance I've gone and broken all the rules and I'm already a few chapters in to book 3. THE DAMN CLIFF HANGER MADE ME!

Short and sweet review, but I don't want to give anything away.

Happy Reading


Wednesday 9 July 2014

Review: Blood Will Follow, Valhalla Saga 2

Publisher: Jo Fletcher Books
Price: £ 20 (hardback)

Right then, we are back with the vikings, but this time all is rather disbanded and there are even more plot lines to follow! DARN!

I do wish I had read part 1 closer to reading book 2 as there are a lot of plot turns and character subtleties that I think I have forgotten in the year it has been between books. However, that hasn't diminished my enjoyment of this read.

It isn't as war packed and bloody as the first book, but don't let that deter you if it is what you enjoyed the most about book 1! There is still blood, it's just not as vile!

The plot has more twists and turns than I could have foretold and I think that has something to do with the fact that there are so many different plots being woven by several different sets of characters. U and A are still in the thick of everything, you will no doubt be happy to know, and their characters are just as awesome as they were previously, if not even more intriguing. The gods pop up more here and that is awesome. They create a very mystical presence and give the book a whole new edge and open up a whole new set of questions for the reader.

This is a perfect middle book for a trilogy as it has the feel of a quest and of people with a purpose and a destiny to fulfil. These books are really rather spiffing and do indeed make vikings seem like real men and not just a part of history that you learn about in school. Also, it makes vikings darn sexy. 

Oh, and I need the next one NOW!!! NOW I SAY!

Happy Reading

Book Geek

Monday 7 July 2014

Review: Arms Wide Open

Price: £ 7.99
Publisher: Corsair

Melly has 2 kids, an ex husband and a twin brother. They are all trying to find their place in the world, in their own lives and in their slightly odd family.

The writing is truly wonderful. There is wit, sarcasm, sadness, excitement, tragedy and joy. I was laughing at one moment, and feeling really blue the next, I really couldn't put this book down. The one liners are so incredibly awesome, especially from Jack (I am completely in love with him)! Also, when it comes to the writing, it was amazing to see a bloke so completely capture so many different thoughts, actions and voices of so many dynamic characters from a teenage girl to a middle aged woman who has a few things to iron out to a strangely perceptive but loveable young boy. I forgot the author completely, but in a good way! 

The characters were brilliant. I fell in love with all of them...apart from the ex and his bit of fluff, they annoyed me so totally it was a pain in the arse. However, they were very farcical and I did love that about them. 

This is a gorgeous read and I will recommend it to people again and again and again. The writing, the relationships, the story and the characters are all so wonderfully created, so incredibly normal and achievable and accessible that the charm sucks you in from the start.

This book really is a true gem.

Happy Reading

Book Geek


Wednesday 2 July 2014

Review: Precious Metals

Price: £ 1.71 ebook
Publisher: Salt

My review, I warn you now is going to be a bit short. Mainly because this is a rather short book in itself...more of a novella maybe? Anyway, N and Z love each other but they come from incredibly different worlds. 

Z is Muslim, N is Romanian. Their cultures, education, language, lifestyle and acceptance in the area is all very different and that is clear from the offing and constructed very well seeing as you have such a short length of time to get to know them. The spoken word portions are spot on, it is clear that MF has spent time with and looking into the way people who have english as a second language form sentences, especially with reference to the country they are originally from. It's rather impressive indeed. Oh, and, with all the cultural references and comments, it is also clear that MF has seriously done her homework. We can't forget that a book about the mingling and meeting of two very diverse cultures is being written and commented on by a white English women. It is most convincing.

This is defo a modern day, and rather dark, Romeo and Juliet with some excellent sub plots and twists. It's quick to read and a great insight. The only down side I would say is that it is too short for what it is looking at. I would have loved to see it as a full length novel with more complex discussions of politics, racism etc, and not just the surface scraping that happens.

Happy Reading, none the less

Book Geek

Tuesday 1 July 2014

Review: Carnal Acts

Publisher: Arcadia Books
Price: £ 11.99

Murder, gangs, posh people and personal issues all form combine in this book to make it basically a crime/thriller with balls and grit.

This very dark and twisted tale felt uncomfortable from the start, I couldn't put it down, but sometimes, I didn't really want to pick it up either. The twists and turns and general plot went from the mundane mother problems to sex slavery within two pages....you are always on your toes.

When it comes to the characters, they are varied and all cracking in their own special ways. I love Joni and Heck, a fabulous pair. They are amazing in their own ways, and their personal problems give them that extra reason for you to love them!

The Albanian crime clans aspect is seriously interesting. It is now something I would defo like to learn more about. SA, whoever they are, obviously did their research and knows their shizz when it comes to the crime families in the country.

You really need to have balls to read this book as it is terrifying, it is dark, its heart breaking and brutal allllllll at the same time! But most of all it's gripping.

Oh and when it comes to the question #WhoIsSamAlexander? I have no bloody idea!

Happy reading

Book Geek