HJL Reviews and Musings

I have a book addiction that began with Nancy Drew in kindergarten. I've read pretty much all genres, to exclude non-fiction because I love to read for the escapism. I only review books that I feel strongly about, whether for good or bad. I think of truthful, honest, reviews as being there as a 'pay-it-forward' for others.

Sad day at Amazon

Well gang, Amazon has decided to clean house, and they're banning regulars right and left - including Yours Truly. 




I'm not alone (thank god), and I was able to give a head's up to my fellow friends/posters as to where they can reach me on GR.  Another friend not on GR suggested I come back to Booklikes so we can connect here, too.


So, here I am.  Not sure how active I'm gonna be since I could barely remember/figure out how to even make this post, but I'll give it a go.  ^_^

Yeah - So...

This should be pretty interesting.  An experiment, if you will.  There are many GoodReads refugees swarming over to to BookLikes (thank you for being here, BTW - yes, BookLikes, I'm talking to you ^-^), with no idea how to make this work for the best.  Me included.  But I'm going to give it a shot.


So, speaking as a fairly techie illiterate - to those who lend assistance to the rest of us, THANK YOU!

Pierced - J.C. Mells Interesting premise. I wasn't fond of the heroine, and had figured out her 'secret' at the very beginning - so the reveal on that was a non-event for me. This was touted as an Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance. There really is NO romance - just a hint of what might come - should you choose to read book two after the cliffhanger ending of this one (I won't be). And, for what it's worth, I read the sample of book two, and as far as I can tell, it's a rehash of book 1, but from the hero's perspective. Huh.So. What I liked. I concept/idea of the story.What I didn't like. The author seemed to have a difficult time using contractions. They were used on and off inconsistently, and made the entire reading experience incredibly awkward. It was so bad that I wondered (still do) if English isn't the author's native tongue.1.5 stars
The Other C-Word - M.K. Schiller Pretty good right up until the last 5%, when everything became tell, not show, and VERY rushed. What the hell?Must ponder more.
The Wolf Gift - Anne Rice Not as bad as I expected, based on other reviews I have read, but not as good as I had hoped.
Styxx (Dark-Hunter, #23) - Sherrilyn Kenyon Whoa.After the last several Dark-Hunter fiascos that I've read, this was an amazing surprise. Really, kind of a deja-vu of Acheron. 75% plus of the story is the long ago history (9500+BC) which tells Styxx's childhood, which was the polar opposite of what we'd been told/shown before. And as bad, if not worse, than Acheron's. Best thing? It really didn't 'retell' Acheron's book. Nice.I must say that as much as I loved and felt for Acheron in his book, I loved Styxx more. And Acheron didn't hold up as well. Okay, he redeemed himself there at the end, but the boy definitely had his faults exposed here.My only complaint (and it's one I had about Acheron, as well) s that in the last 10% or so, there was a ton of action and info dumping that made my head spin. After reading hundreds of pages of angst-filled history, it was a bit jarring to kind of be thrown into the climactic ending and explanations so quickly and heavily (I like the onion process best, myself. You know, peeling away the layers slowly - NOT chopping the onion open wide in one blow). A star lost for that. :/But if Acheron was a book you really liked (like me), I don't think you'll be disappointed in this one.Recommended. For sure.
Harvard Hottie - Annabelle Costa One of the worst covers and titles I've ever seen, but the story itself was actually pretty good.1st person POV from the heroine, typical poor/smart girl meets and hates gorgeous/rich boy in college. With a hate/like relationship. 16 years later, they meet again, and circumstances have really changed.He's a quadriplegic.For me, I thought the handicap was handled well. It's not the typical romance that ends with a miraculous recovery, and the very real physical (body) effects of being unable to move/feel are not glossed over or glamorized (as an aside - I do not have any real life experience with this type of injury, so I don't know how accurate/inaccurate it is - it seemed good to me with my limited knowledge).The only real gripe (and it cost the book a star) is the seriously abrupt ending, and the fact that the ebook ended at 85% to allow for advertizing/excerpts. Oh! I almost forgot - Free on Amazon currently, too (no idea how long):http://www.amazon.com/Harvard-Hottie-ebook/dp/B00DUHRQ2K/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1378125923&sr=8-1&keywords=harvard+hottie
Fracture - Adam Ryle Creepy is the only word I can think of to describe this book. Could have been closer to a 3, I guess, but for some things that really kept pulling me out of the story. I 'think' the story was set in the US, all of the characters seemed to have British names. I kept seeing Harry Potterish extras every time someone's name was mentioned (Major Winterson, Colin Hardgrave, Mrs. Pettigrew, Claire Thirgood, Adriana Ranvesthorpe, etc), and the town names (no idea if they are made up or real) - Hollensvale, Malderton, Maidensborough, etc) seem British, also. I would have thought the story took place in the UK, but for mentions of 'Lowe's' for home improvements, going to Arizona, NYC, and Maine. I guess stuff like that won't bother others, but it did annoy me.Other than that, it's pretty readable.
Smart, Sexy and Secretive - Tammy Falkner http://tammyfalkner.wordpress.com/2013/07/10/chapter-one-unedited-of-smart-sexy-and-secretive/Can't wait!Update - read 8/30/2013Really liked this 'book' 2 (more like novella-length, really). Great end to Logan and Emily's story.I would have preferred to see a bit more length, and again - more depth on Matthew's cancer prognosis, and it felt like the author 'forgot' about Logan's hearing aides being lost, because I didn't recall it being addressed AFTER it was pointed out. Unless, of course, it falls under one of the next books, about one of Logan's brothers.The only negative comment I have is that this book 2 REALLY should have been included in book 1 to make a full novel. It's cheating to split stories like this up to make an extra buck.
The Secrets of Moonshine (Moonshine, #1) - Denise Daisy read 8/2011
Killing Sarai (Killing Sarai, #1) - J.A. Redmerski 2.5 stars. Yup, I'm bucking the trend again. This didn't really do anything for me. I found it very easy to put down, mainly because I just didn't like Sarai. She was TOO unemotional for me.Yes, I know. She'd been traumatized and she'd shut down, so she was supposed to be that way. I get it. But I couldn't connect or sympathize with her in any way. I thought Victor was written much better, and I did feel more connected to him.Another cliffhanger-ish ending, no HEA, so is this another serial?I'll pass on book 2, thanks.
Consequences (Consequences, #1) - Aleatha Romig Premise is interesting, execution sadly lacking. TSTL heroine, non-hero, no redeeming features in either. And seriously, 3/4 of the book could have been removed without affecting the plot. Far too much telling of the story, as well. It felt like I was seeing the characters and events through a thick fog. The third person narrative just came across as too distant. I don't know how else to describe it.The only reason this isn't 1 star is because there was an intriguing twist at the end which 'sort of' piqued my interest.
Truth - Aleatha Romig Waste of time and money. :( So disappointed after hearing all of the hype.

Trying Not To Love You: 1 (Love Series)

Trying Not To Love You  - Megan   Smith DNF @ 50%. Sorry. Cannot handle any more of this awkward (at best) writing style.
Adam, Enough Said (This Can't Be Happening, #3) - Lynda LeeAnne Meh. Really more of a 2.5. Lots of miscommunication and misunderstanding, and a fairly predictable villain's side plot.I might write a more detailed review later.
The Silver Devil - Teresa Denys Re-read 8/2013Oh, I know this old bodice-ripper sets off a plethora of hot-buttons for many readers. Fortunately - not for me.All of those hot-button issues aside, this is a very well-written, cult-classic, book. The tone is very dark; Felicia's first person narrative detailed, enlightening, but not omniscient. Truly, though she is presented with all of the facts (albeit, ambiguous facts), she doesn't put things together very well in her naivety of the deviousness of Domenico's world. This actually makes things more challenging for the reader - to pick up on the nuances that are Domenico, to look past his 'devilishness,' and see his true motives and feelings for her.In real life, Domenico would be a dangerous sociopath, but in Romancelandia, he is a romantic, over-the-top, jealous, possessive hero of the first degree.Truly one of my favorite books, despite it's increasingly non-politically correct nature.

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