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Review Date: 2/24/2009
Helpful Score: 6
I am a sucker for a well written historical especially when they center around wonderful characters of history. Most of this book is obviously fiction and much artistic lisence has been taken by the author in regards to the real life players. With that said however, this was one of the most lushly written pieces I have had the pelasure to read in awhile.
You feel as if you are in the story with the wonderful descriptions that paint a lavish world full of both beauty and danger. Combine that with a backdrop of one of the most beautiful love stories of all time and you have a book that stays with you look afetr the last page is read.
I enjoyed the inner strength of the heroine and found myself on pinds and needles, anxiously turning pages formuch of the novel. Its definetly one of the best I have read so far this year.
Review Date: 5/14/2009
Helpful Score: 15
I will start off by saying I love this series. I started it long before the TRUE BLOOD HBO series came out so I have been faithful from the beginning, and have always waited anxiously for the newest book in the series. I also reread the series each time a new book comes out to keep refreshing. Most were great book. A few of her more recent ones left me a little hungry for more as they didnt really hit the spot but they were OK. I was excited for this book hoping Miss Harris would really expand upon the work she had done in her previous books and tie up some of the loose plot lines. Sadly, I feel this book left me feeling both disspaointed and extremely hungry because it wasnt even an appetizer.
Without giving spoilers and ruining it for others, like some of the reviewers I felt there was simply too much going on all at once. I love exciting plotlines and twists and lots of action as much as the next reader. However, I felt in this novel it was overkill. There was not one OK BREATHE moment in the book. Miss Harris opened 20 different cans of worms at once; exciting yes, but also exhausting and confusing. My mind was still literally trying to process one "OH CRAP!" moment, when I was tossed into two more "Double Crap" and "Holy Hell!" moments. There wasn't just one climatic moment; there were about 25 so each time made you wonder if this was it-except you still have 100 pages left.
The end I felt was almost anticlimactic and a little disjointed. CRAZY ending, big show down, throw down and then it just sorta stops? Not quite a fade but you finished the book thinking huh? Should it really have ended there? The characters were just put through some horrific and really tragic events (yes you will need tissues) and a lot of moments of enlightenment and none of that was really touched upon.
Several characters appeared and disappeared like Houdini and some of the more permanent disappearances, one in particular, really left me with a bad taste in my mouth because it was really horrific and tragic and just was not addressed one way or the other. It was sort of thrown at us and then we were left to process it. Which would have been fine had you actually HAD time to process it. But soon after you are thrown into yet more action. All I will say not to give it away is it is in regards to Jason and the Werepanthers.
I also feel Harris didn't adequately give Sookie time to make emotional sense of everything going on around her. This novel like the others is written in first person narrative and when anything happens in our lives, our minds process things at a 100 miles an hour in our minds. Yet Sookie barely touches upon any of these events with much introspection.
(SPOILER) Sookie is captured by renegade fairies and tortured grotesquely-so much so that her mind and body even with the infusions of vamp blood should be in such a fragile state, we should have really FELT it through her thoughts, her words and we dont. Its sorta just blah. She mentions she would never see the world again but its literally one or two sentences and all tell no show about how she suffered. The book ended shortly after.
There was some expansion to the history of Eric which was interesting, but the blood tie between Sookie and Eric from the last book was never really discussed; can it be broken, is it permanent, etc. I am also a LEETLE BIT concerned with the introduction of the blood bond with Eric that makes Sookie feel always peaceful, almost complacent around him. Miss Harris added a new dynamic to that in this book that I wont ruin for you, and it just made me go..OYE...I am REALLY hoping she doesn't go the route that LKH went with the Anita Blake and the ardeur (compulsions to make" her do things)... LKH uses it a cope out and a crutch and Harris is simply too good a writer to go that route so I hope she steers back.
(SPOILER) I also felt the new relationship between Sookie and Eric was sorta baloneywe didnt feel the tension that had been there in previous books because now Sookieis unsure whether her feelings are real or a result of the blood bond. So when she sleeps with him again we get the lust factor but not much else. ANDalthough she was hoping Eric would come and save her when she is tortured, one of her few coherent thoughts is of Sam, wishing he were there so she could be in the presence of someone who loved her; very odd. But there wasnt much interaction with Sam in the rest of the book as per usual so it seemed disjointed.
I did find Erics quote of youre killing me! Youre killing me when he seemed obviously upset about not being able to rescue Sookie himself, interesting. Another layer of mystery but it was abruptly abandoned as well.
I am going to give this 3 stars because it has promise. If Harris can get it together for the next book and write something LENGTHIER than this (this was a short book) and really tie up some loose ends and give us better character development and relationship building and expansion, it will be amazing. I am just HOPING that the next books bring back the storytelling and plot structure we've come to expect from Charlaine Harris.
Review Date: 2/20/2009
Helpful Score: 5
I really enjoyed this book. I got it in a game here and it was easy reading. Fluffy adnd light with a biting sarcasm all wrapped up in a creampuff that made me giggle wickedly more than a few times. The main characterw as likeable even when she wasn't, and the ending was great-revenge is a dish best served with sweet tea-spiked.
Try this one. It seems a little fru fru in the beginning but its well worth the read. i finished it in one night because all of the characters were so vivid.
Review Date: 10/17/2008
Helpful Score: 3
I LOVED this book-Laugh out Loud funny. The characters were great, both the primary and secondary characters. The premise of her being a pet photographer with talking gadgets was clever and I really got into it. She is one of my new favorite authors.
Review Date: 11/21/2008
Helpful Score: 2
I really enjoyed this book. I wasnt sure I would because the cover seemed to be trying too hard, but as they say, shouldnt judge a book by its cover because I loved this one. Great normal, family involving romance set along the backdrop of the racing scene. The story focuses less on the scene though and mroe on character development and their relationships which I loved.
I find some erotica tends to go heavy on steamy and light on story. This combined the content of a great mainstream romance with some HOT stuff.
The main characters were extremely likeable (LOVE Suzanne!) and I found myself wanting to read stories about all of them.
I do not keep much erotica-usually a catch and release sort of gal, but this one is staying on my keeper shelf.
Review Date: 2/26/2009
Helpful Score: 2
Fragile by Shiloh Walker
For any Walker fans, great book. Couldnt put it down. Just as great as The Missing. She's pushing darker themes in the last two books and just has a great maturity in her writing. They are just angsty enough with enough hope to counter. She is always a must by for me as far as the newer stuff goes.
The characters are really likeable in this novel. It would be a must keep for me if I ahdnt promised it to someone else before finishign it! DOH!
Definetly try to get your hands on it if you like her writing.
Review Date: 11/5/2008
Helpful Score: 6
I wanted to like this this book. I love all of Joey Hill's work generally and this book is yet another of her beautiful, epic romances with characters that are wonderfully written and prose that flows as seamlessly as the ocean waters.
HOWEVER..I have a bit of a love/hae affair going on with this novel. Yes it is a wonderful fantasy novel whose story and characters will stay with you long after you finish the last page. It inspires love, hope and reminds us that sometimes a little faith is the answer to everyhting.
Wih that said though, I did at times find the main characters, Anna and Jonah, characters to be a bit one dimensional. Anna is a kind hearted person who sacrifices everything for the man she loves. While thats noble and seems like something we all would do, it became a bit overbearing when she patiently forgave and took everything that was thrown at her without complaint. She moved from good soul to martyr quickly and long before the final stand.
There were times when Jonah, plagued by his own demons wallowed so deeply in his own despair that he lashed out at Anna with a force that was unforgiveable. Yet she forgave him. And forgave him. And forgave him... I understand forgiveness and I understand the path to redemption. I love those themes. However I wish Miss Hill would ahve remembered that she is a BRILLIANT writer and can get across her themes of forgiveness and redemption easily without knocking us over the head with the idea that Anna is a martyr and Jonah is a beast who needs love to be redeemed.
It reminded me less of a Beauty and the Beast story, than it did ironically, the idea of machismo and marianismo in Lationo culture; the man needing his women to pray for him and sacrifice for him or else he would never find his way into Heaven alone.
again, I think its defiently worth reading. Its a wonderfully crafted story and I am looking foward to the second one because I liked those characters in this story. but its definetly not a keeper for me.
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