Showing posts with label vampire. Show all posts
Showing posts with label vampire. Show all posts

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Really Mini-Reviews - Escorting the Escort by Lyss Em and Babyvamp by Lyssa Dering





Really Mini-Reviews title image with inset title images for Escorting the Escort and Babyvamp, and icon of books in bottom corner



You want some awesome M/M New Adult romance novellas?

Of course ya do!

Today I've got reviews of Escorting the Escort by Lyss Em and Babyvamp by Lyssa Dering - which are both written by the same author, just under different names.

They explore orientations beyond just Gay or Straight, and are pretty damned awesome t'boot!




Friday, 20 October 2017

Friday Fics Fix - Gimme Gimme Some of that Vampire Money, C'mon!

So, we're still in October - so I figure that more Harry Potter is in order.






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We're going further down the fanfiction rabbit hole though, because this week we have a vampire fic.


Thursday, 10 August 2017

Friday, 14 July 2017

Friday Fics Fix - Fanfiction in Koru Mag

Do you want to read a whooooole magazine issue inspired by fanfiction and fan art and all that jazz, including a fic by your dear darling book nerd (i.e. me)?




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Of course you do! Why in hell's name wouldn't you?!*

*Don't answer that.


Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Review Time! - The Voices of Martyrs by Maurice Broaddus

The Voices of Martyrs title image




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Title: The Voices of Martyrs
The Voices of Martyrs book cover

Author: Maurice Broaddus

Genre: anthology, short stories

Genre (of individual stories): historical fiction, contemporary, sci-fi, fantasy, paranormal, vampires, urban fantasy, horror, dystopian, magic realism

Amazon: UK - USA








A few starting notes:


I received a free digital review copy of this book via NetGalley. NetGalley provides review copies from publishers in exchange for fair and honest reviews.

Honestly, I like me some short stories - and I never fail to be impressed by Rosarium Publishing - so I figured, why not? And decided to give this a shot.





Premise:


A collection of voices - an unforgotten collected memory that encompasses the past, present, and future.

These short stories are tales of strength, pain, sacrifice, and life. These are the voices of martyrs.



Monday, 13 February 2017

Review Time! - Santa Muerte by Lucina Stone

Santa Muerte title image


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Title: Santa MuerteSanta Muerte book cover

Author: Lucina Stone

Genre: New Adult/NA, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Witches, Vampires*, Werewolves*, Historical Fiction* (*ish)

Series: The Daniela Story #1

Amazon: UK - USA








A few starting notes:

I received a free digital review copy of this book from the author, Lucina Stone, who I'm in contact with on Twitter.

This does not affect the content of my review; my review is fair and honest.

I agreed to read this with only the vaguest of notions of what it was about - I had read Naz @ Read Diverse Books' review of it, but had mostly forgotten about it by the time Lucina Stone contacted me.

I definitely didn't realise that it was urban fantasy - so that was a pleasant surprise!

I love urban fantasy - a subgenre of paranormal which involves magical-type-people (witches, vampires, etc.) faffing about in cities and/or towns in which they have their own societies (sometimes open to human society, sometimes hidden.)

It's strange, really, since I don't like cities in general - too much of a rural kind of girl. *shrugs* But there you have it.






Premise:

Turns out there's more to Daniela's family than she thought there was.

In the year 2030, Daniela sees no end to the pain. Depressed and hurt by an abusive relationship, she tries to take her own life...

...and wakes up somewhere strange.

This can't be happening. She can't be in the 1920s... right?

Dani doesn't get this time period, has no idea about magic, and, with a farm-girl named Daphne in tow, is being chased by a bunch of people who want her dead - or at least in jail.

All she wants is to go home to her mothers, but that seems almost impossible from here...







Best bits:

I love the chatty tone of this book. Stone grabs hold of you and says, 'come on guys, this way!' Which is spot on.

And the time travel element is well done! DID YOU HEAR THAT???? THE TIME TRAVEL ELEMENT IS WELL DONE!!!!!!!!!

Too often, time travel gets unnecessarily messy, or even just plain naff, but not here.

Here we have the reality of suddenly finding yourself in a world full of racism and rigid gender rules (Daniela ends up posing as a dude because of her short hair and trousers.)

And it's an element which is missing from your average time travel plot: the day-to-day-ness of living in that period, especially as a person of colour (PoC) in the USA.







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I liked the Mexican variations on the stalwarts of urban fantasy.

All of the different species of the paranormal and urban fantasy worlds - vamps, wolves, witches, etc. are removed from their White European stereotypes and instead seen through the lens of Mexican folklore.

Most notably we have the brujas - the Mexican witches - who are written with skill and intrigue, and are far removed from the average urban fantasy witch-chick (who is normally a white goth-girl and/or biker-chick.)

The depression representation is good overall, devastatingly realistic as a whole - but I did have a minor issue with it, which I'll write about in the next section.

The sense of hopelessness and worthlessness depicted is accurate and heart-breaking, and Daniela doesn't magically get better the moment she ends up in 1923, meaning it's not treated as just a plot point.

And we get a same-sex, lesbian, parenting couple - which is awesome.








Not so great bits:

First thing, as ever, is first, here's the potentially distressing content from this book (hold on, there's some stuff to get through):
  • depression
  • attempted suicide
  • suicidal thoughts
  • hanging
  • abusive relationships
  • low self-worth/self-esteem
  • racism
  • racial slurs (including the 'n' word)
  • the KKK
  • lynching
  • segregation and discrimination
  • sexual abuse
  • child abuse
  • sexual assault
  • rape
  • torture
  • kidnapping
  • burning (as a form of torture)
  • attempted murder
  • homophobia
  • grave-robbing
  • missing persons investigation

I think that's everything - v. sorry if I've missed anything out.

There's swearing and violence; if you can handle all the other stuff though... *shrugs*

At one point, the phrase totem pole is used in as a metaphor in a non-native setting, which is seen as cultural appropriation, affecting some First Nations tribes (this piece by Robin R R Gray explains more.)

It was only once, but was still disappointing, and I hope won't occur again in future books.







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Also, and this one is more of a personal preference, the relationship between Dani's mothers is referred to as a lifestyle. I don't like this.

I'm aware that a lot of LGBTQ+ people are ok with it (especially from older generations,) but I am personally not a big fan of the term.

But then, a lot of LGBTQ+ people find the term queer very offensive, but I personally identify as both sexually fluid and queer.

I guess you just have to understand that some people will be offended by both of these terms, and you need to examine how and why AND WHETHER YOU SHOULD use them in any given context.

Occasionally it felt like the representation of Daniela's depression was a little bit hit-and-miss, simply because at the times when it wasn't affecting her so much it was almost as if it didn't matter any more.

Honestly though, the representation of depression was, overall, heartbreakingly affective.






Verdict:

This is a great book - a strong foundation for the series, with great characters and interesting paranormal elements.

If you're an urban fantasy fan, this is a must. But those not so familiar with the genre will love it too.




UPDATE 22nd APRIL 2017:

A couple of people have raised issues with the lesbian and depression representation in this book, as well as a few other matters. Some people have equated Dani's lesbian mother having sex with a man with biphobia.

I personally don't agree with the lesbian rep/biphobia criticism - because if anyone knows that sexuality is fluid, it's yours truly. But I see the validity of the points made.

For an overview of the issues that some people have with this book, see C T Callahan's Goodreads review.

I do find C T Callahan more than a little harsh on this book, but you guys all know that I believe in having all the cards on the table so that you can make up your own minds.

















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Monday, 23 January 2017

My 7 Top Picks of 2016's Books

(This post contains a flashing/fast-moving gif which may cause problems to those with photosensitive medical conditions.)


2016 wasn't 100% bad - just, like, 85%, or something. Anyway, there were some pretty awesome books!

I've purposefully picked books with 2016 release dates here - but I should point out that I also read some pretty great 'back-list' (pre-2016) titles during the year, they're just not on the list.




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So, these are my picks of books released in 2016, that I read in 2016. Everyone got that? Great.

(And yes, I know this post is technically 'late' - but I make my own rules dammit!)













I'm also uber-pleased to note that most of these are diverse books - so anyone who says diverse books are lower quality needs to go and ask themselves some serious questions 😇

They are also all written by women - girls rock!





Here we go then (and in no particular order, because I am a wuss who can't rank books over each other):




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Nina Is Not Ok by Shappi Khorsandi


Nina Is Not OK book cover

Amazon links: UK - US




For my international readers (and boy is that a phrase I'm never going to get used to,) who may not have heard of her, Shappi Khorsandi is an Iranian-British comedic genius.

Her first novel though, is not light-hearted. It's not funny. It's not for the faint of heart. And it's freaking incredible.

Seriously, this is one that I'm sooooo happy I had a digital review copy of, because I was so privileged to be one of the first people to read it.

Since then, I've basically been like 'read the thing!' whenever it's been possible to recommend it.

And I'm clearly not the only one, since it was recently nominated for the inaugural Jhalak Prize - though Khorsandi unfortunately withdrew the book from the longlist out of concern that drawing attention to her ethnicity might alienate white readers.

It's a disappointing decision, but it's far from my place to tell a person of colour (PoC) how to market their own book.

And it really is a fantastic book guys! You can see my full review here.






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Swan Boy by Nikki Sheehan


Swan Boy book cover

Amazon links: UK - US




Nikki Sheehan is a definite talent. I can't wait to see what she comes up with in the future.

Swan Boy is a remarkably artistic and lyrical kids' novel (middle grade/MG) and it's just... a stunningly beautiful read.

Honestly, it's amazing.

Check out my full review of Swan Boy here.






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Blood Stain, Vol 1 by Linda Sejic



Blood Stain Vol 1 cover

Amazon links: UK - US




Linda is an amazing person who writes awesome and oh-so relatable comics that make me laugh and bring me smiles when I need them.

You will love the hapless Elliott as she tries to make her way in this bizarre world of adulting (and she has levels of clumsiness and bad luck that most of us will recognise!)

You can see my full review of Blood Stain, Vol 1 here.






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Monstress, Vol 1: The Awakening


Monstress Vol 1 book cover

Amazon links: UK - US




ORHGUIREJNGOIRGHNKETMNHOEIROIJTGGWMKRNGHTOI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

There are very few books which I consider '5 star' books guys.

(And I have issues with the arbitrary and restrictive nature of star ratings anyway - which is why I don't use them on this blog!)

But, if there is such a thing as a five-star book, then THIS IS A 5 STAR BOOK.

It has everything - fantasy, world-building, a disabled Asian protagonist, and stunning artwork.

And I want to adopt the small fox child. Soooo cute!

The ladies in charge here - Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda - have a lot to be proud of.

You can see my fangirling ramble review here.





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Santa Muerte by Lucina Stone



Santa Muerte book cover

Amazon: UK - US


One which I haven't reviewed yet (but I will dammit! I will!)

Santa Muerte is an awesome-sauce first instalment in a new-adult urban fantasy series by the lovely Lucina Stone.

What is urban fantasy? It's only an uber-incredible sub-genre of paranormal and fantasy that involves paranormal-types faffing about in cities and/or towns!

Add in the focus on brujas (witches,) and a chatty prose-tone (that's totally a phrase now. Shh,) and what more do you want?!






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Luna the Vampire: Grumpy Space by Yasmin Sheikh


Luna the Vampire book cover

Amazon: UK - US




Do you want grumpy internet-style humour with bright colours and a millennial attitude? Of course you freaking do!

Seriously, Luna makes me smile. And will make you smile too.

Check out my review here.







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Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova



Labyrinth Lost book cover

Amazon: UK - US



Another bruja book, although a lot different to Santa Muerte, Labyrinth Lost is the beginning of a YA series about a bisexual Brooklyn Latina girl, Alex, who has a big mess to clean up.

This one is so involving, and those of you looking for a new YA obsession and/or fandom need look no further!

You can see my review of Labyrinth Lost here.












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Tuesday, 25 October 2016

5 Spoopy Book-To-Film Adaptations For Halloween

Hello dearest nerdlets! Halloween is coming up (which, if you've spent 5 minutes on social media lately, you've probably noticed,) so I decided to give you a little list of 5 book-to-film adaptations in the Halloween-y spirit!










1. The Crow


The adaptation of James O'Barr's amazing graphic novel is a) violent and b) awesome. Not for kids, this is... rough... but is still, most definitely, worth the watch.

Brandon Lee played the title role of Eric Draven, and, infamously, was sadly killed on set by a freak set of circumstances which resulted in live ammo being used. He was amazing in this film.





Amazon: UK - US







2. Secret Window


This comes from a Stephen King short story/novella-type-thing called Secret Window, Secret Garden, and stars Johnny Depp.

Book nerds will especially love this one (yes guys, I know my audience dammit!) because it follows a writer, and deals with imagination, the power of stories, and characters/plot.

The denouement (fancy words!) is different in the short story - but, to be honest, I love both (but did find it ironic that a plot obsessed with story endings changed the ending of the story.)





Amazon: UK - US







3. Harry Potter (series)


Yes, this counts! There are witches and wizards and sh**!

And not everyone wants things to be too scary on Halloween - so, to them, I give the notion of a Harry Potter marathon. My gift to you. ;)





Amazon: UK - US







4. Interview With The Vampire


My friends, Lestat started my love affair with all things vamp, and to that I will always thank this film (which I saw before I read the book! Shocking! But I actually do that a lot.)

Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt playing two exceptionally sexy vampires - truly, what more could you want?

And yes, the queer aspects of the story are toned down - but there is no denying* the homoeroticism here. (Fans self.)

*although, someone I went to school with did think they were 'just being friendly' - because, y'know, we all stroke our friends' faces lovingly and breathe lustily in their faces every now and then. (Eye rolls.)





Amazon: UK - US








5. Constantine


The Bestie would kill me if this wasn't on the list.

Therefore I give in to the higher power that is my friend's wrath, and give you this comic-book-based tale of hell and damnation. Plus Keanu Reeves. #JobDone.

Oh, and I've actually reviewed this! (I really need to do more bookish film reviews... I just keep forgetting!) You can check out that review here.





Amazon: UK - US








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Saturday, 30 July 2016

Month In Review(s) - July 2016

Ahhh, July - funny old month, some good things, some not-good things.

But, y'know, I'm still standing, and blog-wise things are looking uber-awesome if I do say so myself! :)




This is me this month. #TrueStory ;)




This month has been rockin' as far as blog-stats are concerned:

I hit over 20k page-views in all, with over 5k views just this month.

A lot of this was due to my most popular post of the month - my review of Luna the Vampire, which hit over 2k page-views all on its lonesome! (Honestly, I don't know why that post was so popular, but I'm not complaining!)

Diary of a Reading Addict now has 50+ followers on BlogLovin'.

I now have 900+ followers on Twitter!





I reviewed some awesome-a*s books this month - stand-outs for me include Nina Is Not OK by Shappi Khorsandi and Monstress, Vol: The Awakening. But honestly, I reviewed a lot of rockin' stuff this month!

And yes, before you say anything - I realise that of the 8 books I reviewed this month, 4 were graphic novels *shrugs* - there's nothing wrong with that!





As July 2016 faffs off into the sunset, I'm going to shamelessly point you at my post for The Diverse Books Tag.

I will also point you at Naz's awesome Read Diverse Books blog - check it out :)




And without further ado, here are the book reviews I wrote this month:





Kids






Thor: Dueling with Giants by Keith R A DeCandido - Fantasy, Media Tie-In







Young Adult




Panic by Lauren Oliver - Contemporary






New Adult




Nina Is Not OK by Shappi Khorsandi - Contemporary, LGBTQ+ (M/F and F/F)






Adult





Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson - (Modern) Classics, LGBTQ+ (F/F)








Graphic Novels




 

   



Luna the Vampire, Vol 1: Grumpy Space by Yasmin Sheikh - Humour, Sci-Fi, Paranormal, Vampire
Mythic, Volume 1 - Fantasy, Mythology