Showing posts with label novella. Show all posts
Showing posts with label novella. Show all posts

Friday, 5 January 2018

Month in Review(s) - December 2017

Decemmmmberrrr!!!!!!!!! Wooo!!! XD (Yes, it's January - but let's face it, I never wrap-up on time.)



December 2017 calendar image





OK, so December for me was actually super-super-hectic, but it came with Christmas at the end, so I really can't be mad at it! Lol.

(I love Christmas. Sooooo much!!!! 😁 )



Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Mini-Review! - The Wooden Heart by Daniel Abrahams



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Title: The Wooden Heart

Author: Daniel Abrahams

Genre: short story/novella, contemporary, horror*, fantasy* (*ish) 


Amazon: UK - USA










Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Release Day Review!!! - Strange Weather by Joe Hill





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Title: Strange Weather

Author: Joe Hill

Genre: Novellas, Anthology, Horror

Release Date: 24th October 2017

Amazon: UK - USA















Premise:


Strange Weather is a collection of four novellas or short novels by writer Joe Hill.

Snapshot, Loaded, Aloft, and Rain are connected by bizarre weather events, providing a backdrop - or a catalyst - to the events which unfold.




Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Review Time! - Thirteen Hours by Francis Gideon


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Title: Thirteen Hours

Author: Francis Gideon

Genre: Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Paranormal, Zombies, Steampunk, LGBTQ+, Romance (M/M; secondary F/F,) Novella/Short Story

Amazon: UK - USA








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)














Saturday, 3 December 2016

Charity Reading Challenge Update - November 2016

It's been a long time since I've been able to do an update for this challenge. Luckily, this month, I can!








Host: Becky's Book Reviews
Duration: January 2016-December 2016

The Challenge:

'Read for a good cause!

Buy books at a charity shop, or, even a friends of the library book sale, or, donate a certain percentage of money for each book you read for the challenge.

You can choose your own goal of how many books to read, what charity you'll be donating money towards, how much money, etc.'

The full rules can be found on Becky's Book Reviews here.

My sign-up post can be read here.






November 2016

Number of books read so far: 3/10* (*total revised down to 10 from 20 - because I just wasn't going to make 20!)

This Month: 1





Title: Airport: Code Red by Michael White & James Patterson

Price: £0.25

Charity Helped:

The Red Cross -

The Red Cross does so much excellent work that it's hard to pin it down to one sentence -

they're there for crises big or small, providing emergency relief, aid, medical care, and tackling loneliness, protecting refugees, and training people in first aid.

Check out their website @ redcross.org.uk

They are active both within the UK and internationally

You can shop with The Red Cross on the high street, or on their online gift-shop here.

You can also donate directly (inc. to specific appeals) here.




My Thoughts on the Book:

I don't say this often. But I'd advise pretty much anyone to not read this book.

It's hugely Islamophobic from start to finish. I was hoping for something - anything - to provide some sort of counterbalance. But no.

What we have here is flimsy stereotypes and racist tropes, combined with a totally offensive scene where the Qur'an is thrown across the floor for no purpose other than antagonising a terrorist. Islam and terrorism is treated as one and the same throughout.

And we also have a good slab of sexism - just because.

The only reason I finished this book is because it's short and I'm woefully behind on this challenge. Save yourselves the pain.

I honestly can't believe a book published in 2016... strike that. It's 2016. *sigh*

I won't be buying any more James Patterson books 1st hand - charity shops only, even if I do read any of his others.

And this is going straight back to the donate pile. Maybe it can do some good there.


Total money raised for various causes: £4.49


Charities Helped: Fund for a local child, Oxfam, and The Red Cross.







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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, 28 June 2016

Month in Review(s) - June 2016

We're half-way through the year folks! Which is kind of rocking, really, because it means we're that much closer to Christmas.

(I love Christmas!)





Anyway, back to the summer-ish-ness of June, and I can honestly say I read a little bit of everything this month.










Plus it was a pretty fab month blog-wise: I reached over 750 Twitter followers, over 15k blog page-views (ARGH!!!!!) and over 30 Bloglovin followers.




AND JUNO DAWSON LIKED MY TWEET!!!!!!

(I'm a massive Juno Dawson fan - so this was kind of a fantabulously big deal to me.)






So catch up on all my reviews this month with this handy link-list (and I've added cover images, because I spoil you.)




Kids










Young Adult







These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly - Historical Fiction, Crime







Adult







Life Blood by V M Black - Romance, Paranormal, Vampires, Novella
Landline by Rainbow Rowell - Contemporary, Chick Lit, Magic Realism, Romance* (*ish)






Graphic Novels






Codename Baboushka, Vol: The Conclave of Death - Spy, Gangster, Thriller, Crime
Klaw, The First Cycle - Young Adult, Fantasy, Superhero*, Paranormal* (*ish - there are shifters of various types and somewhat of a superhero origin story.)




Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Mini-review! - Life Blood by V M Black

Life Blood V M Black coverTitle: Life Blood

Author: V M Black

Genre: Romance, Paranormal, Vampires, Novella

Series: Cora's Choice #1


Amazon: UK - USA





Verdict:


I picked this book up because free e-books are my kryptonite. Particularly paranormal romances. They're like alcopops or junk food to me, honestly.

So yeah... this went on the e-reader!

This is one of those 'get-you-hooked' series-starter novellas. Like a drug dealer who gives you the first hit for free.

(Reading is an addiction - I keep telling you people this.)

As such, it's pretty short, and is series-foundation-setting rather than a full-blooded (ha! Blooded. Vampires. I just noticed that,) romance in and of itself.

The sexy-times only start to appear near the end, and aren't all that graphic (but I still don't want you young 'uns reading this! It does get a li'l steamy.)

And I'm not entirely sure I'm sold on the love-interest/s.

Luckily, the main romantic-al feller/vampire is more a lust-interest at this stage, so has time to develop in other books into (potentially) something deeper before everyone starts declaring undying love, or whatever.

Oh, and personal-safety-wise? It was nice to see Cora being careful to tell people where she is... even if some of her other decisions are a little ill-advised to say the least.

At least someone would be able to find the body if she was murdered and left in a ditch. Better than what most heroines manage, Cora - 10 points to Gryffindor!

(I don't know if she's in Gryffindor... I just kind of assumed...) (No, I actually haven't had coffee - which is more worrying than having it to be honest...)

This, then, is a short and very readable para-romance novella. If vampire romance is your thing, you'll probably devour this. :)









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Saturday, 28 May 2016

Month in Review(s) - May 2016

And so another month is well on its way to faffing off into the sunset.









I actually haven't reviewed any graphic novels this month (I know - who am, and what have I done with Cee?)

I'm probably making up for last month, which had graphic novels falling from the ever-loving rafters.

I've been on a bit of a contemporary YA binge lately - which led to me reviewing 3 contemporary YA titles this month.

'The Art of Being Normal' was beautiful, 'One' was unique, and 'Boy Meets Boy' was your favourite rom-com in book form.






My stand-out book this month, though? 'Swan Boy.' Wow. Just wow.





Kids




Swan Boy by Nikki Sheehan - Contemporary, Magic Realism








Young Adult



The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson - Contemporary, LGBTQ+
One by Sarah Crossan - Contemporary, Poetry* (*novel in verse)
Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan - Contemporary, LGBTQ+, Romance (M/M)









Adult




alt. sherlock. holmes - Anthology, Novellas/Short Stories, Crime, Contemporary*, Historical Fiction*, LGBTQ+* M/M* (*one or more stories.)







Non-fiction




Reasons To Stay Alive by Matt Haig





Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Review! (Yay!) - alt.sherlock.holmes

Title: alt.sherlock.holmes

Author: Gini Koch, Jamie Wyman, Glen Mehn

Genre: Anthology, Novellas/Short Stories, Crime, Contemporary*, Historical Fiction*, LGBTQ+*, M/M* (*one or more stories.)

Amazon: UK - USA



Individual Novellas:

The Case of the Tattoed Bride (UK - US)
A Study in Starlets (UK - US)
The Power of Media (UK - US)





A few starting notes:

I received a free digital review copy of this book via NetGalley from the publishers Abaddon, an imprint of Rebellion. NetGalley provides review copies from publishers in exchange for fair and honest reviews.
I'm a fan of pretty much anything Sherlock-Holmes-related, so when I got the chance to read this collection of alternative takes on Holmes & Watson, I was there.




Premise:


A Scandal in Hobohemia (and) The Case of the Tattooed Bride by Jamie Wyman
 
Sanford 'Crash' Haus (this story's version of Sherlock,) is the owner of a travelling carnival in 1930s dustbowl-America.
Fate throws him together with Jim Walker (John Watson,) a black amputee war-veteran, who also happens to be one hell of a doctor.




All the Single Ladies (and) A Study in Starlets by Gini Koch
Murder and reality shows bring together Dr John Watson with Ms Sherlock Holmes, a consulting detective with the LAPD.
Will Southern California ever be the same?






Half There/All There (and) The Power of Media by Glen Mehn


This Sherlock is hanging out with some very interesting people - Andy Warhol's hangers-on, to be exact, and their drug-dealer, Dr John 'Doc' Watson.

But Sherlock is bored - and decides to find some cases to occupy his time. 




Best bits:

A Scandal in Hobohemia (and) The Case of the Tattooed Bride by Jamie Wyman

I really loved the romance between Jim Walker (this story's John Watson,) and Mrs Hudson - it was sweet but not overly, and gave a nice sub-plot to the whole thing.

I also liked that Jim was a black man in 1930s America - along with all the prejudice that comes with that, despite being a wounded war veteran.

Jim's the narrator here, and never lets himself be pigeon-holed as a victim.

I also love the careful balance of the PTSD elements - a realistic struggle, but not something which overwhelms Jim's whole life.

The 1930s circus/carnival (not entirely sure which,) setting gave it all a slightly Carnevale (UK - US) vibe, which I kind of loved.






All the Single Ladies (and) A Study in Starlets by Gini Koch

I think this was the scenario where Sherlock seemed most like Sherlock - despite being a woman instead of the traditional male role.

She's clever, cutting, but also occasionally playful.

She has a strong edge to her which just spoke totally of Sherlock Holmes to me - determined and non-nonsense; as far as I'm concerned she rocks.

I liked the part-showbiz setting, and the title of 'A Study in Starlets,' is just fantastic ;)



Half There/All There (and) The Power of Media by Glen Mehn

I really liked the prose here in particular - it was incredibly well-written and was quite beautiful in places.

I also loved the Holmes/Watson relationship dynamic here - totally made sense, and was believable and sweet t'boot :)

Plus there was always the sense that everything interweaved with everything else in this one, even if not directly, which gave it a really unique vibe.

Hard to explain it really, but I liked it, whatever it was.

I liked that this novella tried to deal with the racial tensions, and the issues faced by LGBTQ+ people in the 1960s - unfortunately it maybe didn't always get the balance right.




Not so great bits:

There's various instances of violence and swearing throughout the collection, which won't be to everyone's taste.



A Scandal in Hobohemia (and) The Case of the Tattooed Bride by Jamie Wyman

There were moments when I felt that things just didn't quite gel together with this take on Holmes.

I'm not sure why exactly - maybe it was just trying to achieve too much in too short a time, but this made it seem a little jumpy and incoherent in places.

Also, it kept switching from a circus to a carnival, and I'm like: which is it?!

I felt like maybe we could've done with a stronger show of Sanford (this version's Sherlock,) or 'Crash,' and his general character.

He didn't seem all that detailed, character-wise, and, to me at least, I would've liked some more depth.

That's a personal thing though, and I think a lot of people will be happy enough with Wyman's portrayal.






All the Single Ladies (and) A Study in Starlets by Gini Koch

There were moments here where the prose seemed to drag a bit. It wasn't too bad, but it did slow me down in places.

Largely speaking it zipped along, there was just the odd moment where the prose slowed down a little too much for my liking.

Also, occasionally Sherlock acts like a bit of a douche - but then, the character always has been a bit of a douche. (In the best possible way.)




Half There/All There (and) The Power of Media by Glen Mehn

I wasn't too thrilled by all the casual-drug-taking here. In places, it felt like it was a little too normalised, and that's not great. *Shrugs.*

I was also a little confused by the 1960s references in places - I'm not from New York in the '60s, you may have to explain a little more. Just saying.

Also, if the author could've dialogue-tagged the speech a little more? Explained who was talking and when? That would've been great.

I did feel a little uncomfortable with the way some of the racial and LGBTQ+ issues were dealt with.

Referring to LGBTQ+ people as 'homos,' for example, may be historically accurate (i.e. for the 1960s,) but it doesn't feel right to a 21st Century mind-frame.

It's highly uncomfortable - at best.




Verdict:

I really enjoyed this collection overall.

Each one of the interpretations somehow managed to bring a freshness to a story that's been told time and time again (and very well at that.)

Sure, there were hiccups here and there, but largely speaking? An enjoyable read.







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