Posts tagged with action-and-suspense

Dec 17 2018

Little White Lies, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

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Jennifer Lynn Barnes's books must have great elevator pitches: cheerleader spies! Magic-granting tattoos! Teenage FBI agents! Unfortunately, her latest effort, Little White Lies, doesn't fully lean in to the wildness of its Gilmore Girls-meets-Peyton Place premise. Barnes is a solid writer, but her books are never as cheesy as they sound, and this was a story that could have used significantly more cheese...

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Dec 17 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Little White Lies, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

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This week's Book Giveaway is Jennifer Lynn Barnes's latest, Little White Lies, which combines some girl-power crime-fighting with a Gilmore Girls-inspired premise. A full review will follow shortly, and this giveaway will run through 12/28/18...

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Dec 3 2018

The Dark Days Deceit, by Alison Goodman

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Maybe this is a sign that I'm thinking too much about baked goods right now, but Alison Goodman's The Dark Days Deceit reminded me very much of one of those professionally decorated sugar cookies—technically impressive, but not that much fun to consume...

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Nov 19 2018

Archenemies, by Marissa Meyer

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Archenemies, the second book in Marissa Meyer's Renegades series, picks up immediately after the events of the first. Heroine Nova Artino is still working as a double agent, torn between her loyalty to the villains who raised her and the morally-questionable “superheroes” who control her city...

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Nov 19 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Archenemies, by Marissa Meyer

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This week's Book Giveaway is Archenemies, the sequel to Marissa Meyer's Renegades. We had some realllly big problems with Renegades, but the sequel, at least at first glance, seems to be looking up. A full review will follow shortly, and this giveaway will run through 11/23/18...

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Nov 6 2018

Huh

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How did I miss the previous trailers for this new Robin Hood movie? Why does it look so terrible? (And why are the costumes so weird?) If it didn't have a reasonably big-name cast, I'd assume this was, like, a Syfy original series...

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Oct 22 2018

An Easy Death, by Charlaine Harris

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Charlaine Harris knows what works for her. All of her books feature working-class protagonists, vividly imagined worlds, and a bizarre notion of romantic chemistry. Her latest effort, An Easy Death, takes those familiar elements in unexpected directions, but her basic formula is still present...

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Oct 8 2018

Priest of Bones, by Peter McLean

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Peter McLean's new novel Priest of Bones centers around someone competently handling an unusual job (one of my favorite things to read about!), but features loads of sexual violence (one of my least favorite things to read about!). Your enjoyment of this book will hinge upon your interest in the former, and your tolerance for the latter...

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Sep 25 2018

Does someone rip off a wig?

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I finally saw the trailer for A Simple Favor. I had no idea it was based on a book until I read a review describing it as a "campy" take on Gone Girl. Gone Girl already seemed pretty camp to me...

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Aug 13 2018

Stars Uncharted, by S.K. Dunstall

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I'm not surprised that there's a promotional quote on the front of S. K. Dunstall's new novel Stars Uncharted comparing it to the popular book/TV series The Expanse. The two stories have a number of similarities (multiple narrators, ragtag space explorers, nods to film noir), but Dunstall's book has its own strengths and weaknesses...

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Jun 18 2018

Misfit City, Issues 3 - 8, by Kiwi Smith and Kurt Lustgarten

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When I reviewed the first two issues of Kiwi Smith and Kurt Lustgarten's 8-issue miniseries Misfit City, I groused about the flimsiness of the plot, but felt the characters and setting made up for it. Unfortunately, as the series progressed and less of each issue...

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Jun 18 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Misfit City, Volume 1, by Kiwi Smith and Kurt Lustgarten

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This week we're going to be reviewing issues 3 through 8 of the comic book miniseries Misfit City, so our Book Giveaway pick this week is the graphic novel compilation Misfit City: Vol. 1, which includes the first four issues. Our review of the rest of the series will be up shortly...

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Jun 11 2018

The Unknown Ajax, by Georgette Heyer

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First published in 1959, Georgette Heyer's The Unknown Ajax is one of my all-time favorite books. It has a lot in common with The Grand Sophy—both are stories about a previously unknown relative showing up and taking charge of a troubled family—but The Unknown Ajax, happily, doesn't feature a scene with an offensive Jewish stereotype...

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Jun 4 2018

Grey Sister, by Mark Lawrence

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Grey Sister, the second book in Mark Lawrence's Book of the Ancestor series, combines the magical schools and super-powered children of Harry Potter, the mystical sisterhood of Dune's Bene Gesserit, and more violence and looming ice than Game of Thrones. The various elements don't fuse together perfectly, but there are some A+ ideas in play...

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Jun 4 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Grey Sister, by Mark Lawrence

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This week's Book Giveaway is Mark Lawrence's Grey Sister, the second installment in his Book of the Ancestor series. I was unexpectedly impressed by the first book in this series (so good, despite a lot of stomach-churn-y bits), so I'm looking forward to this sequel. A full review will follow shortly...

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May 14 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Burn Bright, by Patricia Briggs

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This week's Book Giveaway is Patricia Briggs's latest Alpha and Omega novel, Burn Bright. I'm hoping this cover art isn't literal, because the idea of being tangled up in thorns is legit creepy. A full review will follow shortly...

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May 7 2018

Not If I Save You First, by Ally Carter

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Ally Carter's Not If I Save You First sounded like a PG-13 version of Meg Cabot's 2002 romance novel She Went All the Way, and since that's one of my favorite contemporary romances, I was pretty stoked to read it. Carter's take isn't quite as funny as Cabot's, but there's more than enough charm and action to satisfy her many fans...

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May 7 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Not If I Save You First, by Ally Carter

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This week's Book Giveaway is Ally Carter's latest YA thriller, Not If I Save You First. I usually like Carter's books, but I'm a little confused about this cover art. Are those letters... popsicles? Candy? Jello shots? It's a mystery. A full review will be posted shortly...

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Apr 5 2018

I don't know about strangEST, but strange, sure.

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Crimereads recently posted a list of "Fiction's 10 Strangest Crimes". I'm not sure I agree with their choices (most of which sound like they fall obnoxiously close to "...and it was all in his head!" territory), but it serves as a reminder that I do want to read Tana French's The Likeness...

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Mar 26 2018

Warcross, by Marie Lu

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When I first picked up Marie Lu's Warcross, my hopes were simple: I wanted a less aggressively self-indulgent version of Ernest Cline's Ready Player One. This definitely qualifies (of course, it's hard to imagine a more self-indulgent version of Ready Player One), but Lu's story has problems of its own...

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Mar 26 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Warcross, by Marie Lu

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This week's Book Giveaway pick is Marie Lu's Warcross, which I chose because I've been wanting to read one of Lu's books for a while, and I mistakenly thought this was a standalone. (You win some, you lose some.) A full review will follow shortly...

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Mar 19 2018

Tricks for Free, by Seanan McGuire

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This is a unusual thing to say about the seventh book in an ongoing series, but Seanan McGuire's Tricks for Free surprised me. This story is much different in tone and content from McGuire's previous installments, but plenty entertaining in its own right...

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Mar 19 2018

Weekly Book Giveaway: Tricks for Free, by Seanan McGuire

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This week's Book Giveaway is Tricks For Free, the seventh book in Seanan McGuire's wildly entertaining InCryptid series. After a brief but welcome detour into non-sexy cover art, my mother will be disappointed to see that the cover model is back to a bulging, ripped tank-top, but one cannot have everything...

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Feb 12 2018

An Extraordinary Union, by Alyssa Cole

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Alyssa Cole's An Extraordinary Union is ambitious: it's a Civil War-era action/romance featuring a biracial couple, both of whom were inspired by real historical figures. (The heroine is based on Mary Bowser, the hero on Timothy Webster.) Cole doesn't stick every landing, but her story succeeds on an impressive number of fronts...

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Jan 30 2018

Don't understand

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And the first trailer is out for the upcoming Jack Ryan TV show, based on the Tom Clancy novels and starring John Krasinski. I find Krasinski far more charming than Tom Cruise, but was this series really crying out...

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Jan 29 2018

Runaways: An Original Novel, by Christopher Golden

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I'm not totally sure what “Original Novel” means to the bigwigs at Marvel, but that's the slightly misleading phrase they're using to describe Christopher Golden's new book Runaways. (I guess “Transparent Cash Grab” didn't fit on the cover.) Golden's book doesn't seem to be a direct relation of either the rebooted comics or the recent TV adaptation, but rather a story that branches off from an early volume of Brian K. Vaughn's original series...

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Jan 15 2018

Renegades, by Marissa Meyer

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I've been reading Marissa Meyer's work for a long time. She got her start writing fanfiction, then wrote a series of fairy tale adaptations, then followed those up with an origin story for a famous villain...

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Jan 2 2018

Farewell, Ms. Grafton

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I was very sorry to hear of the death of mystery/suspense writer Sue Grafton, who died last week at age 77 after a two-year-long battle with cancer. According to her family, Ms. Grafton did not wish for her books to be made into movie or TV adaptations, and would absolutely not approve of a ghostwriter...

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Dec 11 2017

Red Sparrow, by Jason Matthews

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If you are a big John le Carre fan, but have always wished that his books featured more female characters, Jason Matthews's Red Sparrow is the book for you. I, however, am not a le Carre fan, and as far as I'm concerned adding female characters just expands the scope of a fundamentally unpleasant story to include a bunch of new targets...

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Dec 11 2017

Weekly Book Giveaway: Red Sparrow, by Jason Matthews

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This week's Book Giveaway is Red Sparrow, the first book in Jason Matthews's espionage trilogy. If you're looking for a heartwarming holiday read... you should probably keep looking. (Sorry.) But if you need a lot of literary violence to get through the season, you're in luck! A full review will follow shortly...

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