Slightly Longer Thoughts

The rest of the books I read during July 2011 – this time, I actually liked all of them.  Non-Goodreads comments in italics…

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One Was a Soldier (Clare Fergusson and Russ Van Alstyne Mysteries, #7)One Was a Soldier by Julia Spencer-Fleming (mystery)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was totally engrossed in this book, even though it’s been ages since I read the last one, I Shall Not Want (A Rev. Clare Fergusson and Russ Van Alstyne Mystery, #6). Raw, painful, though ever-so-slightly predictable – it was a good read and I’m looking forward to the next Clare/Russ book.

Though I don’t exactly rush out to buy the latest on release date, I know Julia Spencer-Fleming always delivers a good read and is worth the hardcover splurge.  

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Grave Dance (Alex Craft, #2)Grave Dance by Kalayna Price (urban fantasy)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I love the books that make you think “Oh, actually, no, I do want more of X” when you could have sworn you had enough of the genre. For me, GRAVE DANCE is one of these and had me rethinking my supposed overdose of urban fantasy in recent years.

I liked the first book in this series (Grave Witch (Alex Craft, #1)), and DANCE has me really getting into the series – there is great storytelling and world-building here. I loved how Kalayna Price explained the concept of indebtness for fae – having Alex feel the imbalance shift as you thank someone or apologise made total sense. Though I could have done without the love triangle (sigh… if I could ban one plot device, it would be the love triangle), I have to admit both the romantic interests are intriguing, and I want to see what happens next – I’m looking forward to the next book.

I liked this one – can you tell?  This is one of the very few new(-ish) UF series I get excited about.  I haven’t read her other series though – has anyone?

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Naamah's Blessing (Kushiel's Legacy, #9)Naamah’s Blessing by Jacqueline Carey (fantasy)

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

NAAMAH’S BLESSING has not been my favourite of Jacqueline Carey’s three Kushiel trilogies (Moirin and her travels just hasn’t engaged me as much as Phedre or Imriel did), though having said that, I finished this in one sitting despite its length. There’s good storytelling here with genuinely scary parts. And there was a good-wins-out-in-the-end type of ending, which did leave me feeling satisfied.

Gosh, I recall some squeam-ish moments towards the end in this book.  I loved Ms Carey’s Kushiel books but her more recent releases haven’t worked that well for me.  Though having said that, her more contemporary UF, SANTA OLIVIA, is still in my TBR pile.  I should get started on that. 

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Prove ItProve It by Chris Owen (m/m romance)

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked the friends-to-lovers plot, though I’m not quite sure that the device of having a 3rd (or 4th person) explain relationship truths to the h/h really worked because (a) it’s sort of awkward unless yes, they’re very very close and have been a spectator to all your relationships and (b) it would have been more satisfying if the h/h had worked it out for themselves.

I did like the writing and would read more by Chris Owen.

New-to-me author here, IIRC.  And despite my problems with the plot device used, it was a good read. 

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Ghost Story (The Dresden Files,  #13)Ghost Story by Jim Butcher (urban fantasy)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well, talk about story-telling. I’m not entirely sure the book left me completely satisfied as a reader, but it certainly kept me hooked, with Jim Butcher blatantly tugging on my heartstrings throughout. The title of the previous book, Changes (The Dresden Files, #12), was certainly a good prophecy for this book and I will definitely be picking up the next.

My annual Dresden fix.

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10 thoughts on “Slightly Longer Thoughts

  1. Grave Dance by Kalayna Price sounds really good! I might have to give that one a shot!

    Oh Dresden Files, I have so many people who keep trying to get me to read those books. I should really just break down and pick one up. Does the series have to be read in order or can I pick it up anywhere?

  2. Oh, I really like the GRAVE series – I’m looking forward to the third coming out.

    And as for the Dresden Files, I tried and failed to get past the first (or maybe second?) book a couple of times, IIRC. Nath then recommended I skip to the fourth, and it worked – the first couple of books were just too clunky but they definitely improve, and I’m hooked. I will say depiction of strong female characters and Harry’s relationships with women are not his stronger points, which stop this from being one of my favourite series – good storytelling though!

  3. Seriously, I’m starting to think I have too many hang-ups as a reader ^_^;

    I’ve seen reviews for the Clare Fergusson books and how people love her, but unfortunately, I can’t get past her age and her job ^_^; Then, there’s the Kalayna Price books! Like you, I’m a bit fed up of UF… but always on the look-out for new series… but the love triangle? Ugh. Also the fact that she has to sleep with people to stay warm… Hmmm.

    So glad you enjoyed Ghost Story. Changes was epic and it was kind of weird to come back to the “regular” world… although it wasn’t regular anymore. Although I have to say, it was a really good twist! Now, I can’t wait for the next book! I’m thinking since he’s not working on another book, we should get bi-annual fix LOL.

    • Ha – we’re so different. I love the fact Clare is a priest – it adds an unusual dimension to the story. And gosh, I don’t remember the sleeping-together-to-keep-warm part of the Alex Craft books *blinks* Or maybe it just went over my head. The love triangle – yeah, not my favourite, but I’ll see where she takes it next.

      I am looking forward to the next Dresden book – I love how he’s shaken things up over the course of the series.

    • They are better, aren’t they! I am completely up to speed with the Dresden series – this was the 13th, IIRC. I glommed them a few years back, so haven’t been reading them that long. As I said to Samantha, the first few were slightly hard to get through, but after that I was hooked.

  4. Pingback: Books for July | Me and My Books

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