Sunday, December 30, 2007

Twilight Watch (Sumerechniy Dozor)

Twilight Watch (Sumerechniy Dozor) (2007) by Sergei Lukyanenko

Description: Living among us are the "Others," and ancient race of humans with supernatural powers who must swear allegiance to either the Dark or the Light. A thousand-year treaty has maintained the balance of power between the two sides, but when a renegade Other absconds with a fabled book of spells and appears intent on using it to alter the course of humanity, the forces of Light and Dark must cooperate to stop him.

Anton, the hero from Night Watch, is back, but when the culprit turns out to be an old friend, the race against time becomes more urgent than ever. In a world where reality and magic commingle, and where different degrees of existence are layered one atop the other, nothing is ever quite what it seems.

Review: This book continues where we left Anton and Sveta in Day Watch. They are now a family with the daughter they were destined to have. Although things can never go to easily for them. Mysteries abound and a fabled book is found once more. When their daughter is captured and her life is at stake, they bend the rules a bit, but do find an ally from an enemy. I was completely captivated by the story. I just couldn't put it down. Lukyanenko has definitely created a most intricate world with very specific rules. Sometimes I have to remember back to the other books to remember some detail. In this installment, we get some answers to questions that have been looming, but the ending is ready for another book. I think this series is great and that if you love science fiction, you really should give it a try.

Score: 4 out of 5

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Day Watch (Dnevnoi Dozer)

Day Watch (Dnevnoi Dozer) by Sergei Lukyanenko (2007)

Description: The second in a blockbuster series of novels from Russia's most popular science fiction author, Day Watch brings us back into the hyperimaginative world of Sergei Lukyanenko and continues the dramatic battle between good and evil, light and dark, day and night.

Set in modern-day Moscow, the epic saga chronicles the eternal war of the "Others," an ancient race of humans with supernatural powers who must swear allegiance to either the Dark or the Light. The agents of Dark - The Day Watch - keep an eye during the day, while the agents of Light keep watch over the night. For a thousand years a treaty between the two sides has maintained an uneasy balance, but when a very potent artifact is stolen from the Inquisition - an impartial group of Others who keep watch over all - the consequences are dire for both sides.

Day Watch introduces the perspective of the Dark Ones, as it is told in part by a beautiful but troubled young witch.When she falls in love with a handsome young Light One, the balance is threatened and a death must be avenged. Replete with thrilling action and intricate plotting of the first tale, Day Watch is fueled by cunning, cruelty, violence, and magic. It is a fast-paced, darkly humorous, haunting world that will take root in the shadows of your mind and live there forever.

Review: What a great second novel by Lukyanenko. I found myself completely sucked into this world he has created once more. In similar fashion, the second book in the series is comprised of three separate stories that all tie together... and directly to the first. I am completely hooked to this story and can not wait to start the third novel, Twilight Watch. It was great to see the perspective of the Dark Others and see their take on the whole situation. Everything is not as it seems and the decisions are very complex. This was also a refreshing read. It is great to take a break and read some fresh material from another different voice. I am interested to see if anything else by Lukyanenko is translated into English, otherwise I may have to learn Russian just to read more of his work. I highly recommend these novels.

Score: 5 out of 5

Additional Information: Although the second movie in this series by Timur Bekmambetov carries this name, it is actually the story from the first novel, Night Watch.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Bleach Volume 2: Goodbye Parakeet, Good Night My Sister

Bleach Volume 2 (2004) by Tite Kubo

Description: Immediately after checking into the Kurosaki Clinic with a mysterious scar on his back, the muscle-bound Chad goes AWOL. Accompanying Chad is a talking parakeet imbued wit the soul of a young boy named Yuichi. It doesn't take newbie Soul Reaper Ichigo Kurosaki long to surmise that a Hollow must be involved. By far the strongest spirits he's faced to date, Ichigo is about to discover that not every soul is bound for the Soul Society, especially if it's tainted with innocent blood.

Review: The action-packed Bleach is back with more stories of battles with the spirit world. We continue to learn more about soul reapers and how Hollows are made. The story is more interesting and is leading up to more adventure. I can't wait to read the rest of the series. Another recommendation for manga fans.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Blood Alone Volume 1

Blood Alone Volume 1 (2006) by Masayuki Takano

Description: Enter Misaki, perhaps the most innocent and most sincere young lady there ever was. It's almost inconceivable that she could be a vampire. And with her powers as a vampire, she could easily entice any human to do her biding... but she chooses not to. Especially when it comes to Kuroe, a young author who has a deep running past with vampires.

Review: This was a strange little book. It felt like we were dropped in the middle of a story but not really given enough information to figure out what was going on. I believe more backstory is given in the next books, but honesty it was a bit strange and I am not sure if I will continue on with it. Blood Alone is at best a bland story.

Score: 2.5 out of 5

Fool Moon

Fool Moon (Book 2 of the Dresden Files) by Jim Butcher

Description: Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden is Chicago's only openly practicing wizard. He is also dead broke. His vast knowledge and magical skills are unfortunately matched by his talent for making powerful enemies and alienating friends.

With little more than his integrity left, he accepts an offer of work from Lt. Karin Murphy of Chicago's Special Investigation unit. He wants to redeem himself in Murphy's eyes and make enough money to quiet his rumbling stomach.

Soon he finds himself pinned between trigger-happy FBI agents, shape-shifting motorcycle gang members, a threatened mobster boss, and an heir to an ancient curse along with his primal fiance. Throw in environmental activists and a pair of young werewolves in love and you have something of FOOL MOON.

Review: Another great story from Butcher! I listened to the audio version of the story and it was really great. James Marsters, better known as Spike in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel, really was the voice of Harry Dresden. Right from the beginning, I was captivated by the story and just had to keep on reading. The story itself was really interesting. Werewolves in Chicago? I guess stranger things have happened. Just when you thought the story was heading one way, Butcher took you another way. I enjoyed the entire ride and recommend this book, especially if you are looking for a fun, short read.

Score 4.5 out of 5

Friday, December 7, 2007

Bleach Volume 1: Strawberry and the Soul Reapers

Bleach Volume 1 (2004) by Tite Kubo

Description: Ichigo Kurosaki has always been able to see ghosts, but this ability doesn't change his life nearly as much as his lose encounter with Rukia Kuchiki, a Soul reaper and member of the mysterious Soul Society. while fighting a Hollow, an devil spirit that preys on humans who display psychic energy, Rukia attempts to lend Ichigo some of her powers so that he can save his family; but much to her surprise Ichigo absorbs every last drop of her energy. Now a full-fledged Soul Reaper himself, Ichigo quickly learns that the world he inhabits is one full of dangerous spirits and, along with Rukia-who is slowly regaining her powers-it's Ichigo's job to protect the innocent from Hollows and help the spirits themselves find peace.

Review: This book was darker than I thought it would be. I thought the mythology was quite interesting and I really find this series intriguing. There is also some great humor inside. I really enjoyed reading this and recommend reading this series.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Chibi Vampire Volume 4

Chibi Vampire Volume 4 (2007) by Yuna Kagesaki

Description: Fighting temptation for quite awhile, Karin has been able to stave off the urge to bite the handsome, if misfortunate, Kenta Usui. Instead, she tries to do nice things for him, but, alas, this is becoming more and more difficult! Deep down, is there some romance blooming between them? If the gossip floating through the school halls is any indication, Karin might as well bite the boy who's causing her so much confusion!

Review: I continue to be delighted with this series. This novel shows the budding relationship between Karin and Kenta. Although, I am getting tired of all the hinting. I just wish that it would go somewhere. I enjoy the humor and can't wait to read the rest of the series.

Score: 4 out of 5

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Chibi Vampire Volume 3

Chibi Vampire Volume 3 by Yuna Kagesaki (2006)

Description: As Kenta helps Karin study for her school exam, the two start becoming closer. But when Maki catches sight of them and asks if they are going out, Karin protests! She needs time, especially when she feels like she's starting to overcome her blood issues around Kenta. But a new problem is about surface... and the odor is enough tot make a vampire run to daylight!

Review: This series continues to delight me. I am completely entertained and have a really great time while reading this book. I do feel bad for Karin though. Her family seems a bit harsh. I enjoy the relationship she has with Kenta and can't wait to see what happens there. I recommend reading this series.

Score: 4 out of 5

Chibi Vampire Volume 1

Chibi Vampire Volume 1 by Yuna Kagesaki (2006)

Description: Karin is a cute little girl who also happens to be a vampire... with a twist. Once a month, she experiences intense bleeding from her nose-we're talking gushers! In other words, she's a vamp with blood to spare, so rather than stealing blood from humans she actually gives her blood to them. If done right, this can be an extremely positive experience that benefits the "victim" as much as the vamp. The problem is that Karin never seems to do things right!

Review: I thought this was really a cute book. I had a lot of laughs with it as well. The humor is really great. The story is pretty interesting and I really can't wait to see where Karin ends up. More importantly, if she ends up with Usiu. It also was an interesting take on the whole vampire lore. Instead of doing the sucking, she actually gives people blood and also helps them with their problems. This is most definitely not your run of the mill vampire story. With great artwork, it is a great book all around. I can't wait to finish the series.

Score: 4 out of 5

Thursday, November 29, 2007

The Dante Club

The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl (2003)

Description: Boston, 1865. The Dante club, a small group of literary geniuses that includes Oliver Wendell Holmes and Hnty Wadsworth Longfellow, prepars the finishing touches on America's first translation of The Divine Comedy. Their plans come to a screeching halt when a series of murders erupt in a style and form stolen directly from Inferno and its singular account of Hell's punishments. With the police baffled, lives endangered, and Dante's literary future at stake, the Dante Club must shed its sheltered literary existence and find the killer.

Review: We follow several literary big wigs around Boston during 1865 and their adventures with translating Dante into English. That doesn't sound too exciting in itself; however, someone has started murdering people in the fashion of Dante. The Dante Club now has the task of finding out who "Lucifer" really is and stopping him before he kills again. To be honest, I had a difficult time getting into this book. I am not sure if it was the person reading it (I had the audio version) or if I just wasn't connecting with the text. After awhile though, the story blossomed and it did indeed get good. The plot was interesting, but I felt that there was too much extra information and it dragged a bit. I think the people who would enjoy this book the most would either be people interested in literary history or Dante. As I have little experience with either, it was a bit of a stretch for me.

Score: 3.5 out of 5

Christine Feehan Romances Manga Fans

Until recently, Christine Feehan was hardly a name anyone—including the author herself—would expect to see on the cover of a bestselling manga book. But Fans of Feehan’s romances helped propel Dark Hunger, her first manga, published by Berkley Books, to the top of the Amazon graphic novels chart and the #11 slot on PW Comics Week's November comics bestseller list.

It appears that Feehan's loyal fans aren't as interested in her new venture as others may be.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Hellsing, Volume 4

Hellsing Volume 4 by Kohta Hirano (2004)

Description: What do you get when the Nazis, sequestered in South America for generations, have engineered an army of vampires, and are preparing for an all-out campaign of deathly dominance? Well, for one, you get a little unity. It seems the Protestant Hellsing Organization and the Catholic Iscariot agency might just have to think about teaming up. It's looking like the world's biggest battle of blood and fangs is soon to erupt. Read about the next, big arms build-up as the first World War of the undead is mounting. It's just heating up in Hellsing.

Review: We meet up with Alucard and Co. in South America in a battle. The battle really is starting with the bodies piling up. We learn a little more about the Nazis and their grand plan. This developing story is getting better and better. I can't wait to continue reading the rest of this series (I hope I can get them from the library). As stated before, it is not really for the weak of stomach, but the artwork continues to amaze. I find Hirano's style to be so interesting.

Hellsing, Volume 3

Hellsing, Volume 3 by Kohta Hirano (2004)

Description: Vampires! Nazis! Bloodshed! Action! Add to that a healthy helping of sleek style and an exotic locale, and you have Hellsing volume 3. Our scant troop of vampire-killing vampires and mercenaries are planning a little trip beautiful South America, in search of th elusive Millennium Project, and old Nazi organization with very secretive origins. it's the start of a war, and only time will show how nasty this war will become. But one thing's for sure, the vampire Alucard will make sure it gets off to a fitting start.

Review: The series continues as we follow Alucard and Co. to South America where things really get bloody. This series is definitely going in a direction that I would not have thought of going myself. I find it very interesting and really can't wait to see where Hirano is taking us. These books are not for the squeamish, but I really do like Hirano's style. I continue to enjoy the story and am interested to see where it is heading. A must read for vampire and manga lovers.

Score: 4 out of 5

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Hellsing, Volume 2

Hellsing Volume 2 by Kohta Hirano (2004)

Description: A world of murder and mayhem, political intrigue and religious conflict, monsters and undead heroes boils beneath the radar of regular existence. And it's bomb-grade business! There's the cute little police girl, Victoria, a recently turned vampire, who refuses to drink blood and become the real thing (but she's still a darn good fighter); this super swank super-vampire Alucard, who hasn't completely shown his abilities; and the old butler Walter, who's got some tricks under his toruses as well. This is but a taste of the characters killing and being killed in Hellsing, and the action is just beginning.

Review: In this second installment, we follow Alucard and Police Girl on their further adventures and battles against the evil Vatican. The story and artwork continue to dazzle me. I really am enjoying this series. My only gripe is that the character of Police Girl is somewhat dim. I think she could be improved upon, but we shall see as I get further on in the series. I especially love the weaponry displayed in this series. They are very creative and I can't wait to see what Hirano comes up with next.

Score: 4 out of 5

Movie Connection: As stated before, there is an anime series (by the same name) that you need to check out if you are at all enjoying this manga series.

Herushingu (2001)

Hellsing, Volume 1

Hellsing Volume 1 by Kohta Hirano (2003)

Description: There's a secret organization somewhere in England created to defend the Queen and country from monsters of all sorts. Enter Hellsing, an agency, long in tooth, with the experience, know-how, to handle the problems that arise when vampires, ghouls, and the like clamber from the darkness. "What equipment?" you may say. How about another vampire, souped up by generations of study and refinement, armed with a big pistol loaded with special silver bullets? That oughta do the trick. But what really knocks 'em dead is the sharp wit, awesome artwork, and crazy, bloody action that make up the manga. Hellsing, the long-awaited gothic graphic that spawned the popular anime is finally in America, thanks to Dark Horse comics and the folks at Digital Manga, and you're gonna love it. The night is dark, but at least those creepy anti-heroes from Hellsing can make light of it.

Review: In Hellsing, we follow the story of the Hellsing organization and their battle with the Vatican. I found the concepts to be really interesting with this manga. I had fun reading it and couldn't wait for more. I enjoyed the author comments at the end of the story as well. The artwork was stylistically cool. This was a unique story and the pages just flew by. I can't wait to read the entire series.

Score: 4 out of 5

Movie Connection: Kohta Hirano's popular manga series was brought to the "little" screen in 2001. I don't believe that I have seen this anime, but will definitely put it on my list of things to watch. I really enjoyed the story, so I can't wait to see what Hirano did for the series.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Seeing Redd

Seeing Redd by Frank Beddor (2007)

Description: Alyss of Wonderland's rule has only just begun, and already those who prefer chaos to peace are threatening to destroy everything worth imagining. Trailed by newly appointed royal bodyguard Homburg Molly, Alyss is doing her best to keep pace with the non-stop demands of being queen while attempting to evade Molly for a few private moments with Dodge.

Alyss' life is a challenging mix of duty, love, and tough decisions and then a series of phantom sightings set fire to an urban myth of Her Imperial Viciousness' return and have everyone... seeing Redd.

Has Redd somehow freed herself and her chief assassin The Cat, from the confines of the Heart Crystal? If not, then who has resurrected Redd's brutal foot soldiers the Glass Eyes and set them loose to attack Wonderland on all sides.?

Battles rage, looking glasses explode and the Alyssians once again unite to defend White Imagination in this fast-paced follow-up to the New York Times best-selling The Looking Glass Wars.

Review: As a second novel, Seeing Redd does fairly well. This installment of the Looking Glass Wars trilogy find Alyss dealing with her new life as queen. The peace doesn't last for long. It appears that Redd has returned, but has she? We also learn many secrets about certain characters. Although, I guessed what they were myself. On the whole, I found it to be fairly decent. There were a few flashbacks, but nothing that was hitting you over the head. Actually, I was glad to have them as I had forgotten some of the details from the first novel. Characters are developed further and I am anticipating the third novel of the series.

Score: 4 out of 5

Sunday, October 14, 2007

The Arrival

The Arrival by Shaun Tan (2007)

Description: Tan captures the displacement and awe with which immigrants respond to their new surroundings in this wordless graphic novel. It depicts the journey of one man, threatened by dark shapes that cast shadows on his family's life, to a new country. The only writing is in an invented alphabet, which creates the sensation immigrants must feel when they encounter a strange new language and way of life. A wide variety of ethnicities is represented in Tan's hyper-realistic style, and the sense of warmth and caring for others, regardless of race, age, or background, is present on nearly every page.

Review: While it doesn't take long to "read", its artwork is just so captivating. The reason I put read in quotes is that there aren't any words, just pictures. But the artwork that is there, is just outstanding. You could take forever just engrossed in the beautiful artwork that is inside of this book. The story that is told through this artwork is really great. Its basically the story of a man who travels to a new place and is dependent on the kindness of strangers. All in all, a great story that everyone should take a look at.

Score: 5 out of 5

Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Lightening Theif

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (2005)

Description: Percy Jackson is about to be kicked out of boarding school... again. And that's the least of his troubles. Lately, mythological monsters and the gods of Mount Olympus seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Percy's Greek mythology textbook and into this life. And worse, he 's angered a few of them. Zeus's master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect.

Now Percy and his friends have just ten days to find and return Zeus's stolen property and bring peace to a warring Mount Olympus. But to succeed on his quest, Percy will have to do more than catch the true thief: he must come to terms with the father who abandoned him; solve the riddle of the oracle, which warns him of betrayal by a friend; and unravel a treachery more powerful than the gods themselves.

Review: What a captivating book. I had a really hard time putting this one down. It's a great way to teach Greek mythology to kids. I had a real fun time reading it as well. The tone of the book was really great. I just absolutely love Percy Jackson. I can't wait to read about his further adventures. All in all, a great, fun read. I highly recommend picking this book up and giving it a whirl.

Score: 4 out of 5

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The Ruins

The Ruins by Scott Smith (2006)

Description: Eric, Stacey, Jeff, and Amy - four American friends on vacation in Cancun - meet Mathias, a German tourist, who convinces them to join him in searching for his younger brother Henrich. The last Mathias saw of his brother he as headed into the jungle with his new girlfriend and a team of archaeologists. But what the tourists discover, in every gruesome detail, is something far more shocking.

Review: As we followed the group throughout the story, I stared to care less and less for them. The book seemed to drag on and on. I was excited at first and really got into the story. The middle lost me somewhere. At the end I was listening to hear what happened, only to be disappointed in the end. The book had such possibility, but just fell short. All in all, an okay book, but I wouldn't bother reading it unless you have some time to kill.

Score: 2.5 out of 5

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Blue Bloods

Blue Bloods by Melissa De La Cruz (2006)

Description: Within New York City's most elite families, there lurks a secret society of celebrated Americans whose ancestors sailed on the Mayflower. Its members are the powerful and the wealthy - and, in fact, they are not human. They are the Blue Bloods, an ancient group of vampires.

Schuyler Van Alen has never fit in at Duchesne, her prestigious New York City private school. She prefers baggy, vintage clothes instead of the Prada and pearls worn by her classmates, and she lives with her reclusive grandmother in a dilapidated mansion. Schuyler is a loner... and happy that way.

But when she turns fifteen, Schuyler's life changes dramatically. She discoverers a mosaic of blue veins on her arms , and craves raw meat. The death of a popular girl from Duchesne is surrounded by a mystery that haunts her. And strangest of all, Jack Force, the most popular boy in school is showing a sudden interest in her.

Schuyler wants to find out the secrets the Blue Bloods are keeping. But is she herself in danger?

Review: This was sort of The Devil Wears Prada and Buffy's love child. As a sci-fi/fantasy fan, it was not the greatest. There are far better vampire novels out there. That said, there was something to the story that makes me want to find out more. To be honest, I was having a hard time stomaching the constant designer name drops. I get it... they are young, powerful, and dressed to kill. Do I need to know that she is wearing Chanel boots? Hell no. As for the history part, it was almost hard to take. I'll give De La Cruz some points for originality; however, to anyone who knows anything about history, its going to be difficult to read. I guess it is one way to get girls who like "chick lit" into fantasy. I really wouldn't recommend this book unless you are really a De La Cruz fan.

Score: 3 out of 5

Monday, October 1, 2007

The Dark is Rising

The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper (1973)

Description: On the Midwinter Day that is his eleventh birthday, Will Stanton discovers a special gift - that he is the last of the Old Ones, immortals dedicated throughout the ages to keeping the world from domination by the forces of evil, the Dark. He is plunged at once into a quest for the six magical Signs that will one day aid the Old Ones in the final battle between the Dark and the Light. Thereafter, for the twelve days of Christmas while the Dark is rising, life for Will, although outwardly normal, is strangely wonderful as he is drawn through terror and delight.

Review: The story follows Will Stanton on his journey and discovery of his skills as an "Old One". At first, it was difficult to get into the story. I do not think it is the fault of the author, but my own. Once I started reading though, I just couldn't get enough. I found the story to be very interesting and well made. The wording was so colorful, I felt the world was read. I could really picture everything. It was also very enjoyable to read. I would definitely recommend this book to sci-fi fans and/or youth/young adult readers.

Score: 4 out of 5

Movie Connection: David L. Cunningham brings Susan Coopers book, The Dark is Rising to the big screen. After reading the plot synapsis, it appears that Hollywood, once again, has butchered a good story. I will reserve my final opinion until I see the final product, of course. However, it doesn't look so good.

The Seeker: The Dark is Rising (2007)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Night Watch (Nochnoy Dozor)

Night Watch (Nochnoy Dozor) by Sergei Lukyanenko (1998)

Description: Others. They walk among us, observing. Set in contemporary Moscow, where shape shifters, vampires, and street-sorcerers linger in the shadows, Night Watch is the first book of the hyper-imaginative fantasy trilogy from bestselling Russian author Sergei Lukyanenko. This epic saga chronicles the eternal war of the "others," an ancient race of humans with supernatural powers who must swear allegiance to either the Dark or the Light.

The agents of Light - the Night Watch - oversee nocturnal activity, while the agents of Dark keep watch over the day. For a thousand years both sides have maintained a precarious balance of power, but an ancient prophecy has decreed that a supreme Other will one day emerge, threatening to tip the scales. Now, that day has arrived. When a mid-level Night Watch agent named Anton stumbles upon a cursed young woman - an uninitiated Other with magnificent potential - both sides prepare for a battle that could lay waste to the entire city, possibly the world.

Review: What an interesting novel from Russia. It was really refreshing to read something from another country (although it was translated). I really like the whole light vs. dark scenario going on. It almost makes the light (or good) side seem like the real bad guys. I also like how each person actually chooses if they are light or dark and if one is dark, it doesn't make them evil. I almost have to wonder if Lukyanenko ever read Susan Cooper's The Dark is Rising. After reading Rising, I found some similar themes. I know they are all taken from mythology, but I found them to be very close, which fascinated me. The book is long and is actually three stories in one. However, it went really fast and I couldn't wait to continue on the story. I highly recommend this book to sci-fi fans.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Movie Connectrions: Timur Bekmambetov brought this book to the big screen in Russia. Most of the story elements were left alone, but an important one was really changed. In the book, Anton is just a friend of Egor, not his father (as in the movie). I'm not exactly sure why they did that, but perhaps it was just to create some additional conflict. Honestly, I haven't seen the movie in a while, so I would need a refresher. I do remember being absolutely blown away. I thought it was really original and glad to see something of this quality coming from Russia. This movie should most definitely be seen by all.

Nochnoy Dozor (2004)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Tattooed Girl

The Tattooed Girl by Joyce Carol Oates (2003)

Description: Joshua Seigl, a celebrated but reclusive author, is forced for reasons of failing health to surrender his much-prized bachelor's independence. Advertising for an assistant, he unwittingly embarks upon the most dangerous adventure of his privileged life.

Alma Busch, a sensuous, physically attractive young woman with bizarre tattoos covering much of her body, stirs in Seigl a complex of emotions: pity? desire? responsibility? guilt? Unaware of her painful past and her troubled personality, Seigl hires her as his assistant. As the novel alternates between Seigl's and Alma's points of view, the naive altruism of the one and the virulent anti-Semitism of the other clash in a tragedy of thwarted erotic desire.

Review: This has to be one of the worst books I have ever read. The only reason I finished it was because it was a book club pick. The whole book is filled with anti-Semitic slurs. I couldn't care less about any of the characters. It was difficult to find a redeeming quality to anyone. Also, certain facts are never discovered (what was Seigl's disease and who tattooed the girl and why???) I really wonder if the person who wrote the blurb on the book cover read the same book that I did. It was nothing like the book at all. Unfortunately, this was my first Oates book and to be honest, it may be my last. I would most definitely pass this book up.

Score: 1 out of 5

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Lake House

The Lake House by James Patterson (2003)

Description: Six extraordinary children are trying to lead normal lives in the Rocky Mountain countryside. They live in different homes, with different families, but there is something powerful that connects them. Something that puts them in terrible danger.

The only time they've ever felt safe was when they were together in the waterfront cabin they call the Lake House. And the only people they've ever trusted are Frannie and Kit, the couple who rescued them from unimaginable evil once before.

When that evil resurfaces, the kids reconnect with Frannie and Kit and set off on an astonishing adventure. They flee to the Lake House, but even that haven may no longer be safe.

Dr. Ethan Kane is chief of surgery at Liberty General Hospital, one of the most esteemed hospitals in the nation. It is here that terrible secrets lie, secrets that will change the world for all of us.

Review: I only read this as it is the sequel to When the Wind Blows. What it really was, was the first book all over again... but a twisted version of it. We catch up with the kids and Frannie and Kit during this huge custody battle. Not long after we are back on the run with them in an all too familiar sinario. Then, the book takes a somewhat twisted change. Its like Patterson forgot that these kids were kids. They were talking and acting a lot older than 12 year olds. I would most definitely pass this book over.

When the Wind Blows

When the Wind Blows by James Patterson (1998)

Description: Frannie O'Neill is a young and talented veterinarian living in Colorado. Plagued by the mysterious murder of her husband, David, a local doctor, Frannie throws herself into her work. It is not long before another bizarre murder occurs and Kit Harrison, a troubled and unconventional FBI agent, arrives on her doorstep.

Late one night, near the woods of her animal hospital, Frannie stumbles upon a strange, astonishing phenomenon that will change the course of her life forever...

Her name is Max.

With Heartbreaking energy, eleven-year-old Max leads Frannie and Kit to uncover one of the most diabolical and in human plots of modern science.

Review: I decided to check this book out after reading Patterson's Maximum Ride, as it is based on When the Wind Blows. For whatever reason, Patterson decided to take his characters from When the Wind Blows and The Lake House and revamped them into the story of Maximum Ride. I have to say, I think I like the revamped characters. This book was a decent book with an interesting concept. Basically, there is this big government conspiracy with biotechnology. Nothing new, really. These bad scientists decided to splice human with avian DNA. So we get these bird-children. We also have a rouge FBI agent frequently referred to as "Mulder" and a softy veterinarian as their protectors. Once they all find each other people start dying and other mischief ensues. While it was interesting, it was a bit too dramatic at times for me. On the whole, not a bad beach read, but if you are looking for a good read, I would check out one of Patterson's Alex Cross books.

Score: 3 out of 5

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Woods

The Woods by Harlan Coben (2007)

Description: Twenty years ago, four teenagers at summer camp walked into the woods at night. Two were found murdered, and the others were never seen again. Four families had their lives changed forever. Now, two decades later, they are about to change again.

For Paul Copeland, the county prosecutor of Essex, New Jersey, mourning the loss of his sister has only recently begun to subside. Cope, as he is known, is now dealing with raising his six-year-old daughter as a single father after his wife has died of cancer. Balancing family life and a rapidly ascending career as a prosecutor distracts him from his past traumas, but only for so long. when a homicide victim is found with evidence linking him to Cope, the well-buried secrets of the prosecutor's family are threatened.

In this homicide victim one of the campers who disappeared with sister? could his sister be alive? Cope has to confront so much he left behind that summer twenty years ago: his first love, Lucy; his mother who abandoned the family; and the secrets that his Russian parents might have been hiding even from their own children. Cope must decide what is better left hidden in the dark and what truths can be brought to the light.

Review: This was my first time reading something by Coben. I have to say that I am a fan. This was a great read that didn't take me too long to finish. I can see why we have a hard time keeping any of his books on the shelves at the library. I thought the original story was interesting, so I checked it out. Wow, there were so many different turns and revelations. It was very true to life though. Do we ever really know those closest to us? I also loved the sarcastic character of Cope. He was a great "hero". He had his faults, but at the end he knew what was right and did it. A really great mystery that I think everyone should check out. I will definitely check out some of his other works.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Quickie

The Quickie by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge (2007)

Description: When she sees her husband with another woman, Lauren Stillwell's heart nearly stops beating. Their marriage is perfect, she has a great job, she loves her life. But his betrayal turn her into someone she never imagined she could be - a woman lusting for revenge.

It was supposed to be a quickie, a way to even the score. But Lauren's night of passion takes a shocking turn when he witnesses an unexpected, unbelievable, deadly crime. Her horrifying secret threatens to tear her life apart, pitting her need to uncover the truth against her fear that the truth may be too horrible to bear. And whichever choice she makes could cost her dearly - her job, her marriage, even her life.

Review: I couldn't wait to get to the end of this book. It took no time to read, but what time I did spend, it was pure entertainment. What a ride from beginning to end. Although, I did figure some stuff out early on, I was really intrigued by all of the plot twists and turns. It was really a fantastic book (more like a beach read) that I think if you need some entertainment, you should definitely check out.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Friday, September 14, 2007

Too Late to Say Goodbye

Too Late to Say Goodbye: A True Story of Murder and Betrayal by Ann Rule (2007)

Description: Jenn Corbin appeared to have it all: two sons, a posh home, expensive cars, and a successful, handsome husband - Dr. Bart Corbin. Then their idyllic life together began to crumble. Just before Christmas 2004, Jenn was found dead, a revolver beside her. Gwinnett County detective Marcus Head was not convinced it was suicide. And was this related to the apparent suicide fourteen years earlier of Dorothy "Dolly" Hearn? A high school athlete and homecoming queen, Dolly dated Bart in dental school. Or was the answer to be found in a relationship Jenn was having outside her marriage?

Review: What a heartbreaking story. I felt so connected to the people involved due to Rule's excellent writing. What I really love about Rule is that she doesn't make you feel a certain way about the case she is presenting. She presents the facts and then lets you form your own opinion. I thought this book was outstanding and a great fast read for those who really like true crime.

Score: 4 out of 5

Sunday, August 26, 2007


Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer (2007)

Description: As Seattle is ravaged by a string of mysterious killings and a malicious vampire continues her quest for revenge, Bella once again finds herself surrounded by danger. In the midst of it all, she is forced to choose between her love for Edward and her friendship with Jacob - knowing that her decision has the potential to ignite the ageless struggle between vampire and werewolf. With her graduation quickly approaching, Bella has one more decision to make: life or death. But which is which?

Review: Another great romance from Stephenie Meyer. Like New Moon, this book takes off from the last time we were with Edward and Bella. Not only does Bella have to worry about normal everyday teen life, she also has to deal with the darker issues (i.e. vampires and werewolves). I have to say this book started to really frustrate me. I mean, Bella is supposed to be so in love with Edward but she is hesitant to marry him. Then she "discovers" that she is in love with Jacob too. Its really starting to get ridiculous. I can't wait for the fourth book to come out so that I can find out if she will really marry Edward (or disappoint me further by going down this other love road). All in all, its really a good book and definitely worth a look.

Score: 4 out of 5

Friday, August 24, 2007

New Moon

New Moon by Stephenie Meyer (2006)

Description: Recovered from the vampire attack that hospitalized her in the conclusion of Twilight, Bella celebrates her birthday with her boyfriend Edward and his family, a unique clan of vampires that has sworn off human blood. But the celebration abruptly ends when the teen accidentally cuts her arm on broken glass. The sight and smell of her blood trickling away forces the Cullen family to retreat lest they be tempted to make a meal of her. After all is mended, Edward, realizing the danger that he and his family create for Bella, sees no option for her safety but to leave. Mourning his departure, she slips into a downward spiral of depression that penetrates and lingers over her every step.

Review: Another great book from Stephenie Meyer. This was also a very fast read, but still has a lot of substance. The story continues on from when Twilight left off. Naturally, werewolves are brought into this story (although I did see that coming) as apparently we cannot have vampires without werewolves. While I enjoyed most of the book, I just didn't like the direction that it was going with Jacob Black and Bella. I do like his character, however I see where this love triangle is really being formed. I am glad with the ending though. This wasn't as good as Twilight, but still a really great book. I really recommend picking this one up.

Score: 4 out of 5


Twilight by Stephenie Meyer (2005)

Description: Headstrong, sun-loving, 17-year-old Bella declines her mom's invitation to move to Florida, and instead reluctantly opts to move to her dad's cabin in the dreary, rainy town of Forks, WA. She becomes intrigued with Edward Cullen, a distant, stylish, and disarmingly handsome senior, who is also a vampire. When he reveals that his specific clan hunts wildlife instead of humans, Bella deduces that she is safe from his blood-sucking instincts and therefore free to fall hopelessly in love with him. The feeling is mutual, and the resulting volatile romance smolders as they attempt to hide Edward's identity from her family and the rest of the school.

Review: I really enjoyed reading this book. I knew that this was popular with the young adults from my time at Borders, and now I know why. The romance between Edward and Bella is just very well written. Meyer did a wonderful job creating her characters and making the audience really care what happens to them. As for a vampire story, it was very interesting her version of the vampire lore. The notion that it is venom that causes vampires to be made instead of just a bite is very interesting. Actually, I found most of her "rules" to be interesting. I am excited to read the next installments to see what is in store for these characters.

Score: 5 out of 5

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

City of Ember

City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau (2003)

Description: This novel by Jeane DuPrau takes place in the dark city of Ember, a decaying place with no natural light surrounded by the vast Unknown. Although ancestors had arranged for information on leaving Ember to be made available after the inhabitants have spent 200 years there, a corrupt mayor lost the information many years before the novel begins. Two hundred and forty-one years later, Ember's electrical lighting frequently fails, supplies are dwindling, and the populace is growing increasingly frightened. Twelve-year-old Doon and his acquaintance Lina are intent on finding a way to save Ember. After Lina finds a mysterious and fragmented paper titled "Instructions for Egress," they think they have a way out. Can they escape from the villainous mayor and his soldiers? Can they figure out the missing letters and words in the message? Do they find their way out of Ember and up to a post-apocalyptic Earth?

Review: This novel takes you on a journey with Lina and Doon as they discover things are not what they seem in the city of Ember. Doon knows things aren't right but no one really wants to acknowledge that. Then Lina makes a great discovery - instructions on how to leave the city. We are taken along for the ride as the duo make it out of the city. Overall, this book was good. I did think that it was slightly depressing. Children start working at the age of 12 and the city itself is falling apart. There are several blackouts and their supplies are running out, fast. However, there are really great morals taught to the young readers this book was intended for. So even though it may be a bit dark (no pun intended), I think it is a great book for the younger kids to read.

Score: 3 out of 5

Movie Connections: I didn't know, but there is a movie adaptation coming out in October of 2008 for this book. It is directed by Gil Kenan and starring Bill Murray, Tim Robbins, and Martin Landau. It will be interesting to see how this pans out.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes & Nocturnes

The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes & Nocturnes by Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth, Mike Dringenberg, and Malcolm Jones III (1991)

Description: (Back of Book) Enter a dark and enchanting world of dreams and nightmares and meet the Sandman, Master of Dreams, and his kin - the Endless. This first collection of Neil Gaiman's unique and multi award-winning Sandman saga introduces key themes and characters, combining myth, magic and black humor.

Review: I was pleasantly surprised by this novel. I thought it was absolutely brilliant. The story was just outstanding . Its a great mix of art and horror. I don't think I'd want to be home alone and reading this in the dark. I was totally engrossed in the story from beginning to end. I really could not put it down. It was great to see the fall and rise of the Sandman. I now want to read each and every one of the books in the series to see where the Master of Dreams go. I think I especially like the fact that Death is a woman. A very unique vision and very well done. I highly recommend this book.

Score: 5 out of 5

Friday, August 3, 2007

The Last Witchfinder

The Last Witchfinder by James Morrow (2006)

Description: Jennet Stearne's father hangs witches for a living in Restoration England. But when this precocious child witnesses the horrifying death of her beloved Aunt Isobel, unjustly executed as a sorceress, she makes it her life's mission to bring down the Parliamentary Witchcraft Act. A self-educated "natural philosopher," Jennet is inspired in her quest by a singe sentence in a cryptic letter from Isaac Newton: It so happens that in the Investigations leading first to my Conjectures concerning Light and Later to my System of the world, I fell upon a pretty Proof that Wicked Spirits enjoy no essential Existence. Armed with nothing but the power of reason and her memory of Isobel's love, Jennet cannot rest until she has put the last witchfinder out of business.

Abrim with picaresque adventures - escapades that carry Jennet fro King William's Britain to the fledgling American Colonies to an uncharted Caribbean island - our heroine's search for justice entangles her variously in the machinations of the Salem Wtich Court, the customs of her Algonquin Indian captors, the designs of a West Indies pirate band, and the bedsheets of her brilliant lover, the young Ben Franklin. Finally, in a reckless and courageous ploy, Jennet arranges to go on trial herself for sorcery, the only way she can defeat the witchfinders now and forever. Rich in detail, rollicking in style, and endlessly engaging. The Last Witchfinder is a tour de force of historical fiction.

Review: To be honest, I am not sure yet if I like the book or not. This was recommended to me by a former coworker who thought I would enjoy it as I like to read about witchfinders and the witch trials. When I started it, I really got into the story. I got lost somewhere in the middle and put it down for a bit. What was interesting is that the narrator of the book is a book itself, the Philosophie Naturalis Principia Mathematica. There are breaks throughout the book where the narrator sort of buts in to give some backstory. On the whole, it was interesting. However, many times it just seemed to bog the story down. Towards the end of the book, I gained my interest again to see what would happen. The ending was very well done. I think the author tried to tell too much history and not enough story. It really got a bit tedious in that middle section. Also, the way Ben Franklin was portrayed was a bit strange for me. Overall, an interesting read, but I fear you need to be really interested in the topic to even enjoy the book.

Score 2.5 out of 5

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment

Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson (2005)

Description: (From Booklist) Fourteen-year-old Max (short for Maximum Ride) leads an usual group of children, escapees from an institution that designed them by grafting avian DNA onto human genes. Yup, these kids have wings. When Angel, the smallest of the group, is kidnapped by mutants and taken back to the school, Max and her family determine to get her back--no matter what.

Review: This is Patterson's first attempt at young adult fiction. I think he did a pretty good job. The book follows this group of genetically altered teens on a cross-country trip of self discovery. I found the main character, Max (a.k.a. Maximum Ride), to be very enjoyable. I loved her sarcastic replys and attitude. Once I started to read it, I had a hard time putting it down. I thought it was a very enjoyable read and a great young adult book.

Score: 3.5 out of 5.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

1st to Die

1st to Die by James Patterson (2001)

Description: (From Amazon) Lindsay Boxer is a homicide inspector who's just gotten some very bad news. She deals with it by immersing herself in her newest case and soliciting the personal as well as professional support of her closest friend, who happens to be the city's medical examiner. The two women, along with an ambitious and sympathetic reporter and an assistant DA, form an unlikely alliance, pooling their information and bypassing the chain of command in an engaging, suspenseful story whose gruesome setup is vintage Patterson.

Review: This was my first time reading anything by Patterson. I have to admit that I'm hooked. It was a fairly decent story. There were things that made me groan and I did figure things out. However, there were a few surprises thrown in there. It was somewhat difficult for me to get over comparing his novel to how things really work in the criminal justice system. That is just something I always have problems with though. I really don't think that a cop would ever make friends with a reporter like that. When I worked for the P.D. I was sick to death of the press. I do like the idea and it makes great fiction. I thought the story was really interesting and I was captivated the whole time. The ending was a bit predictable, but on the whole not bad. All in all, not a bad read. I will definitely continue on with the series.

Score: 3.5 out of 5

Movie Connections: I had no idea that there was a TV miniseries based off of this book. It came out in 2003 and apparently was on NBC. There were some good actors in it, however looking at some of the reviews, it doesn't appear to have been that great. I also noticed that there is a TV series from this year based off of the Women's Murder Club. I would like to see this show just to see how they do the book justice.

First to Die (2003)
Women's Murder Club (TV) (2007)

Thursday, July 26, 2007

North and South

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell (1854)

Description: (From Amazon) North and South is a novel about rebellion. Moving from the industrial riots of discontented millworkers through to the unsought passions of a middle-class woman, and from religious crises of conscience to the ethics of naval mutiny, it poses fundamental questions about the nature of social authority and obedience. Through the story of Margaret Hale, the middle-class southerner who moves to the northern industrial town of Milton, Gaskell skilfully explores issues of class and gender in the conflict between Margaret's ready sympathy with the workers and her growing attraction to the charismatic mill ownder, John Thornton. This new revised and expanded edition sets the novel in the context of Victorian social and medical debate.

Review: I absolutely loved this book. I had a hard time putting it down. Part of the reason I loved it so much is that it is a topic I am very close to. Even though this novel takes place over 150 years ago, it still rings true today. My parents were both part of unions and I was as well for a short time. So I know how the workers (or "hands") felt. Milton also felt a lot like home to me. Milwaukee is very much like Milton (or was). So I really felt like I knew the characters of Higgins and the other workers. I too feel the same way that Thornton feels about the North (or Milton). I too am from a similar type of city and I don't know how people can survive in the country. This book has a warm place in my heart and I wish I would have known about it a long time ago. I highly recommend this book.

Score: 5 out of 5

Movie Connections: Brian Percival made an outstanding miniseries on BBC based on thsi book. To read my comments, visit my Video Journal. I recommend seeing the movie as well.

North & South (2004)
North & South (1975)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (1995)

Description: Moments before Earth is destroyed, Ford Prefect, an alien who's been incognito for 15 years while researching a newer edition of THE HITCHHIKER'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY, rescues his friend, Arthur Dent. The two stow away on a passing spaceship, and their adventures begin. Ford and Arthur encounter ex-hippie Galaxy President Zaphod Beeblebrox; Marvin, the morose robot; and a slew of otherworldly weirdos populating Douglas Adams's cult classic.

Review: I have read that people either love this book or hate it. I can see why. The humor is not for everyone. I personally loved it. I laughed out loud so many times. As for the narrator, Stephen Fry was outstanding. I don't think I could hear anyone else but him read this book.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Movie Connections: Garth Jennings brought this classic book to the big screen in 2005. I found the movie to be a fairly good adatptation of the novel. There were some things added, however, it was all done in the style of Adams. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and highly recommend it.

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling (2007)

Description: The final installment in the Harry Potter saga. This book ties up most of the unanswered questions and lets us know what happens to all of the characters that we have come to know and love.

Review: Wow. What a completely awesome book. I was one of the crazy people at the midnight release party to get the book at midnight. I just had to know what happened. I could not put it down. It was so full of action and of course, drama. I did have to read it with a box of tissues. In a way, this last book did strip away the wonder of magic that we saw in the first two books (especially towards the end). However, I think the end was just beautiful. I will admit that the epilogue was a bit cheesy, but it was a nice way to wrap up the series and get a glimpse as to the futures of the survivors. I think this may be my favorite of the series.

Score: 5 out of 5

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Storm Front

Storm Front by Jim Butcher (2000)

Description: Harry Dresden is the best at what he does. Well, technically, he's the only at what he does. So when the Chicago P.D. has a case that transcends mortal creativity or capability, they come to him for answers. For the "everyday" world is actually full of strange and magical things--and most of them don't play well with humans. That's where Harry comes in. Takes a wizard to catch a--well, whatever.

There's just one problem. Business, to put int mildly, stinks. So when the police bring him in to consult on a grisly double murder committed with black magic, Harry's seeing dollar signs. But where there's black magic, there's a black mage behind it. And now that mage knows Harry's name. And that's when things start to get... interesting.

Review: I finally gave this series a shot and was pleasantly surprised. I absolutely loved Butcher's style. I was laughing out loud at Dresden's sarcasm. It was a complete delight to read this book. Another reason I like this book so much is that it takes place almost at home for me. I know the area so it really feels like home. Storm Front is action packed from beginning to end and a fabulous story. I highly recommend it.

Score: 5 out of 5

Television Connection: In 2007, the SciFi Channel came ouut with a television series based on Jim Butcher's Dresden Files. I haven't personally seen this series, but am interested to see how close to the books it follows.

The Dresden Files (2007)

Wednesday, July 11, 2007


Stardust by Neil Gaiman (1999)

Description: In the sleepy English countryside, at the dawn of the Victorian Era, life moves at a leisurely pace in the tiny town of Wall, so named for an imposing stone barrier that divides the village from an adjacent meadow. Armed sentries guard the sole gap in this wall, in order to keep the curious from wandering through. Only once every nine years to they relax their vigil, when a market fair unlike any other comes to the meadow.

Here in Wall, young Tristran Thorn has lost his heart to beautiful Victoria Forester. But Victoria is cold and distant-as distant, in fact, as the star she and Tristran see fall from the sky on a crisp October evening. For the coveted prize of Victoria's hand, Tristran vows to retrieve the fallen star and deliver it to his beloved. It is an oath that sends the lovelorn swain over the ancient wall, and propels him into a world that is strange beyond imagining.

But Tristran is not the only one seeking the heavenly jewel. There are those for whom it promises youth and beauty, the key to a kingdom , and the rejuvenation of dark, dormant magics. And a lad compelled by love will have to keep his wits about him to succeed and survive in this secret place where fallen stars come in many guises-and where quests have a way of branching off in unexpected direction, even turning back upon themselves in space and in time.

Review: This was my first time reading a book by Gaiman. I must say I was pleasantly surprised. It took me no time at all to finish this book. The words just flowed and I couldn't stop turning the pages. I really enjoyed the world that Gaiman created. It was a great fantasy from beginning to end. The characters were wonderful. The only thing I do have to complain about is that some relationships were not as developed as I thought they could be. But all in all, a fantastic read.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Movie Connections: In August, the movie version of the book will be coming to a movie theater near you. I personally can't wait to see it. From the pictures that I've seen it looks absolutely beautiful. The only thing that I've noticed from the trailers is that much has been added, but that is to be expected. I will have to wait to make a full analysis of the movie until it comes out.

Stardust (2007)

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Beware A Scot's Revenge

Beware A Scot's Revenge by Sabrina Jeffries

Description: (Back of Book) Lady Venetia Campbell's visit to her childhood home in Scotland takes a dramatic turn when she's kidnapped at pistol point by her father's sworn enemy. Sir Lachlan Ross is widely feared in his guise as The Scottish Scourge, but Venetia remembers her former neighbor as a handsome youth whose attentions she craved. Now a wickedly sexy man, Lachlan's appeal is even more intoxicating... and much more dangerous. Though Lachlan tries to treat her as his foe, his scorching kisses tell another story. And despite his plan to use her as a weapon against her father, Venetia is determined that Lachlan's lust or revenge will be trumped by an even more powerful desire...

Review: I usually do not read Romance and this book reminded me why. It really is not my cup of tea. The story is your typical "boy-kidnaps-girl-then-girl-falls-for-kidnapper" story. Jeffries also tried to make it into some grand Scottish novel, but fell short. Granted, I have not read a whole lot of historical romances ( or regular romances) but the language used was too modern. Every now and then some typical Scottish slang was used, but on the whole, it was unbelievable. The characters were developed pretty well; however, some things they did (especially in the end) were not quite how they were built up to be. It definitely was a fun, light read. It only took me a matter of hours to finish the 361 page book. I now see why romance readers are able to read so many books. There isn't much substance to them. All in all, a decent book despite its lack of correct verbiage.

Score: 2.5 out of 5