Showing posts with label crime. Show all posts
Showing posts with label crime. Show all posts

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Month in Review(s) - November 2016

November; the month in which the USA decided to make the UK's stupid political choices look relatively intelligent in comparison.

All we did was leave the EU... maybe... with no real plans, and a strong sense that nobody WAS LISTENING TO THE INFO ABOUT WHAT THE F**K THEY WERE VOTING FOR.

America decided to go bigger, and elected Trump. *sighs*











Still, we are so, so, so sorry America. We did let Farage faff around your country spreading his toady hatred by campaigning for Trump.

He's now wrecked two countries and potentially the whole world - maybe we shouldn't have given that man a passport.






But, my dearest nerdlets - if you're scared, if you're feeling hurt or alone, please understand this: THERE ARE PEOPLE ACROSS THIS ENTIRE PLANET WHO LOVE YOU AND ARE THINKING OF YOU. I promise.





On the personal side of things, my depression hasn't been as bad as it was last month (woo!) so that's got to be a good thing.

And my blog hit over 45k pageviews, followed by over 50k pageviews in the early days of December!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!






But what about the books?

Well my nerdlets, here are the books I reviewed in November:





New Adult




Eyes of Persuasion by Adrienne Monson - Novella, Fantasy, Historical Fiction*, Crime*, Romance (M/F)* (*ish)





Adult







God Help the Child by Toni Morrison - contemporary, magic realism* (*ish)
Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin - classics (modern,) LGBTQ+ (M/M; M/F)
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller - LGBTQ+ (M/M; M/F,) Mythology, Historical Fiction*, Mythology*, Magic Realism* (*ish)





Graphic Novels




Who Killed Kurt Cobain?: The Story of Boddah by Nicolas Ortero - biography, contemporary, magic realism, non-fiction* (*ish)














Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Review Time! - Eyes of Persuasion by Adrienne Monson










Title: Eyes of Persuasion

Author: Adrienne Monson

Genre: New Adult, Novella, Fantasy, Historical Fiction*, Crime*, Romance (M/F)* - (*ish )

Series: Blood Inheritance (#1.5)

Amazon: UK - USA







A few starting notes:

I received a free digital review copy of this book from the author, Adrienne Monson, via The Review Chain in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Long story considerably shortened - I applied to review a different book of Adrienne Monson's via The Review Chain, and ended up with this one instead.

Just go with it - s'all good ;)





Premise:

Isabeau Maybrick has a lot of cr*p going on - not only does she have to marry some dude because her douche of an uncle is making her, she also has to make money on the side to pay off said douche-y uncle's gambling debts.

(Yes, before you ask - I've had coffee. Let's do this!)

Oh, and to cap it all off? Isabeau has a magic-y eye power which means she can persuade people to do stuff - but it's more than a little hit-and-miss.





Best bits:

This book is hugely enjoyable.

Like dude, it's readable, indulgent, and fun. Kind of like dessert in book form - too much is probably bad for you, but at this amount, you just have to treat yourself.

(Anyone else hungry for chocolate fudge cake right now? Just me? Ok.)

I like Isabeau - she's quite cool. But Meg, her resourceful maid, is clearly more of a bad-a*s, and I would've liked to see more of her.

The idea of Isabeau's magicky-type eye-power thingy is really intriguing - but I also like the way we didn't get caught up in the detail of it.

I think if we'd had too much of the ins-and-outs, it might've spoiled it a bit - the casual way it's approached somehow makes it feel more realistic.

The whole thing is just... fun... in the way of any swashbuckling entertainment with a side of fantasy, and just a smidge of crime as our intrepid heroine faffs about in boy's clothing as an early type of private investigator.





Not so great bits:

I don't like the name Isabeau - I know that's a v personal thing, but it bugged me for pretty much the whole book.

Also, Isabeau feels a little damsel-in-distress-y more than once. Possibly because she makes stupid decisions. #JudgingYou Isabeau - stop doing stupid sh**, m'k?

Unfortunately, there were places where the writing felt sticky and clunky - like it didn't flow right.

In places, it just felt like the author had gripped the prose too tightly, and that can make it feel awkward.

There's violence, a lot of domestic abuse from Isabeau's uncle, as well as references to attempts to force her into prostitution.

There might've been swearing, but I honestly can't remember (note to self: pay more attention to the naughty words.)





Verdict:

This was enjoyable as all hell, and one heck of an adventure :)


















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Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Month In Review(s) - October 2016

October is over!!! And I'm sure most of you are currently stuffed with sweets and/or chocolate from Halloween.

So, without further ado my dearest nerdlets - let's get this wrap-up started!









October was a pretty cr*ppy month for me, depression-wise, but I'm lucky enough to have a) family, b) The Bestie, and c) all of you guys.

Seriously, I appreciate you guys a butt-tonne! You make me smile :)





And even though someone who I once considered cool - a fellow bookworm in fact - unfollowed me when I tweeted about LGBTQ+ things, the number of people actually doing that has reduced from what was happening last month.

This is possibly because I've put Sexually Fluid/Queer on my Twitter bio - so the a*shole bigots probably aren't following me to begin with.






And the very lastest day of this month saw my two-year blog anniversary! And with over 40k pageviews over all, and over 7k pageviews this month, DORA is still going strong (and I'm so surprised and happy, you honestly wouldn't believe it!)






So, to the books I reviewed this month:




Young Adult




Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley - historical fiction, LGBTQ+ (F/F)




Adult




Star-Shot by Mary-Ann Constantine - magic realism*, sci-fi* (*ish)



Comics/Graphic Novels





Bread and Butter #1 - contemporary

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Mini-Review! - Finders Keepers by Stephen King











Title: Finders Keepers

Author: Stephen King

Genre: Crime, Thriller

Series: Bill Hodges #2


Amazon: UK - USA








Verdict:

After reading the first book in this series, Mr Mercedes, a little while back, I wanted to read the sequel.

So, yes, this book is a sequel.

It's actually very different in terms of tone to Mr Mercedes - the central crime-fighting team takes a bit of a back-seat to the plot here - but I actually would recommend reading Mr Mercedes first, rather than reading this as standalone.

(This advice is coming to you from someone who reads most series in a random order according to mood and what book was in the library.

So people who like things organised - and you know who you are - you will definitely want to read Mr Mercedes first.)






This though, is not a book that's that much about our main characters.

I know, that sounds crazy. But this is a book where the central characters of this series are very much in the background.

Instead, our focus is on a decades-old crime, (which, a la Mr Mercedes, we already know the perpetrator of,) and it's unforeseen affect on a teenager from the present day.

This is a tale of literary obsession which bookish folks will recognise as the potential frightening extremity of fandom. This is about the power of words, and people who will literally kill to possess them.

Because this is what happens when the teenage Peter Saubers finds the missing notebooks of a murdered literary genius. This is what happens when the person who hid them wants those notebooks back...











This isn't for the faint of heart - but then, it's Stephen King; even though it's not horror as such, you probably guessed that it was going to be dark.

I found the final showdown pretty disturbing, in honesty. Not that that's necessarily a bad thing ;) But yeah, I actually flinched; it was pretty damn vivid.

There's loads of violence, a shed-load of swearing, and slurs of various sorts from some pretty horrible people.

There's also a lot of reference to rape - there's a lot of rape-as-incidental-plot-point in this book. It's not gratuitous, but it's also very uncomfortable.

I'm glad that black character Jerome is phasing out his jive-talking alter-ego (who consciously came out whenever Jerome decided to act like a jack-a*s,) because that was one of the things that bugged me most about the previous book.

A white dude writing a black character who liked to mock negative stereotypes by inhabiting those stereotypes was a very fine line to tread, and I'm glad that aspect of Jerome's character seems to be falling by the wayside.







I still love our female crime-fighter Holly - the sidekick to main character, ex-cop Bill. She's fab.

She's strong, smart, and has OCD and anxiety problems. And she still kicks a*s.

Allow me to indulge myself in an awesome heroine with mental health problems, ok? ;)











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Saturday, 1 October 2016

Month in Review(s) - September 2016

September was the month that various sh** hit various fans.








In case you're not caught-up on all the goings-on of the bookish online community, let me briefly summarise:


  • Some people questioned authors about the lack of diversity in their books (no matter you're opinion on this, those people had the right to ask the questions.) This resulted in trolling.

  • There was a video on BookTube (the bookish portion of YouTube,) by a horrible person who sees diversity as a dirty word, and is generally a bigoted jerk. She then took offence when it turned out a lot of people didn't agree with her.

  • White supremacist & Nazi trolls decided to spread their racist, homophobic, anti-Semitic, etc. hatred by trolling members of the online bookish community. Most of these people were also Trump supporters.

  • A US library magazine called VOYA showed some of the worst customer service you can imagine in their response to criticism of their apparently bi-phobic reviewing.
...I think that covers most of it. It was an... interesting month.











But we, as a community, are pulling through this... I hope.





As far as my blogging stats go this month, things have been good :)




I discovered an acronym for my blog which had been staring me in the face the whole time - DORA. Which I will now be using when Diary of a Reading Addict is too long-winded.

I passed 30k page-views for the first time (!!!!) and now see between 100 and 300 page-views on a typical day :)







I gained a handful of followers on BlogLovin and Twitter, though not as many as I would've liked.

I also noticed something in terms of my Twitter followers, which kind of upset me.







Whenever I tweet about anything to do with LGBTQ+ issues, I lose 2-3 followers; that's per tweet where I mention queer issues, characters, books, etc.







At first I thought it was just coincidence - but after that it became too regular, and I couldn't believe it was coincidence any more.

It's not like I tweet about LGBTQ+ an excessively large amount... is it? I don't think I do.

Anyway, I figure I'm better off without followers like that. As upsetting as that is.






But I just want to thank all the people who do read this blog, like and RT my tweets, comment on my posts, and continue to follow me.

I love you. Each of you is worth 1000 of those homophobic a*sholes.

In a month of trolls, bigotry, and bad news, there were two high-points - my birthday, and you guys.






So, to the books I reviewed this month:




Young Adult








Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova - Fantasy, Witches, LGBTQ+
As I Descended by Robin Talley - Ghost story, Horror, LGBTQ+




Adult










Comics




The Sun Dragon's Song #1 - Kids, Fantasy



Monday, 19 September 2016

Mini-Review! (Classics Edition!) - And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie










Title: And Then There Were None

Author: Agatha Christie

Genre: Classics, Crime


Amazon: UK - USA





Verdict:

I read this for the Mystery-a-thon hosted by the lovely Ely @ Tea & Titles, which was last week. I decided to only read one book for it because it was my birthday on Thursday and BIRTHDAY BOOKS ;)

Firstly, to the big, galumphing, heffalump in the room (yes, I say heffalump not elephant. Blame either Disney or my mother - both are equally valid,) - I had some major moral/ethical dilemmas with this book.

Largely, this was because of the history of the book's title, and some anti-Semitism and disparaging comments about indigenous peoples (within POV of not-very-nice people.)

I've already talked extensively about my befuddled feelings on the subject, so I won't repeat myself here: let's just say I had some issues with this book that can't be easily dealt with.

So, putting said heffalump back in his corner, having been acknowledged: this book is exceptionally well written and sooooooo atmospheric!

I also liked that there were depths beneath the surface of each and every one of our ten main characters.

They aren't nice people. None of them are nice people. But, all the same, Christie tricks you into a certain level of uncomfortable investment in them.

And it's the interplay of characters, the sense of things unsaid, and the atmosphere of the prose, that will keep you reading.

The writing is truly masterful, and I can only thank the BBC adaptation for inspiring me to read it, despite my muddled feelings on some of the distasteful aspects.















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