I review everything I read, on my blog and on Goodreads. Most reviews are of a decent length but sometimes you don't have much to say about the book because of its length or you DNFed it or various other reasons. In cases like that it makes sense to write a few mini reviews in one post and clear them out your way! So lets catch up with reviews from July this year.
1) Ann Charles-Nearly Departed in Deadwood
Violet is a single mother of two children, working as an estate agent, but with no sales to her name, she is under pressure to deliver or lose her job to a co-workers relative. She becomes concerned to learn that children are going missing and she fears her kids might be next.
The cast of this book are appalling. Violet cannot seem to control her brat children who run wild all the time. At a time when she is in danger of losing her job, she has to put off vital appointments to run home to her attention seeking son. She teaches them no discipline. And if the kid is forever using the phone to drag her home for stupid things, then he shouldn't be given access to the phone! Her daughter likes to disect animals for fun and even does this with her meals in a local restaurant. Creepy child. She also puts adds for 'lovin' in the local paper for her mother who does nothing to stop her or pull her up about her behaviour.
Violet is also spineless over the abuse she takes from co-worker Ray, who steals her clients and tries to get her fired. Her boss Jane sits back and does nothing while he bullies Violet. What a place to work. And when she discovers that someone in the next building is parking in her space, does she tell that person? No, she sits and takes it and then moans about it. Grow a spine will you? And of course every weird guy in town wants to sleep with her.
I hated every character, I didn't like the plot as Violet kept whining about everything that was wrong with her life but not even trying to do anything about it. I really wanted to give her a good slap! It just seemed to be her whining and running about trying to sell a house and dealing with weird men and I got bored quickly.
2) Jordanna Max Brodsky-The Immortals
Selene DiSilva walks her dog along the banks of the Hudson and finds the body of a woman washed ashore, gruesomely mutilated and wreathed in laurel. Now she will fulfill her promise to protect the innocent-and to punish those who stand in her way. With the NYPD out of its depth, Selene vows to hunt the killer. But when classics professor Theo Schultz decodes the ancient myth behind the crime, the solitary Huntress finds herself working with a man who's her opposite in every way. Together, they face a long-forgotten cult that lies behind a string of murders, and they'll need help from the one source Selene distrusts most of all: the city's other Immortals.
I so much wanted to like this one. I love Greek mythology, the cover was great...but I didn't like the characters. Selene is actually the Goddess Artemis, and spends her time hired by bullied women to teach their partners a lesson. Her hatred of men, her decision that Theo is guilty because he visited the death site...it reeks of utter prejudice and makes her character cold and pretty unlikable to me. She is rude and unpleasant to everyone and I want more in my MC than a bitch. Theo just bores me with his constant droning about pop culture and he makes the Greek mythology sound dull and boring too. Gabriela is a bitch, making jokes about the dead woman hours after her death.
There are constant info dumps about Greek mythology which should have been interesting but the way it was introduced was pretty mind-numbing, which was a pity. The characters aren't developed in a way to make me give a damn about any of them so I was soon losing interest. With Selene stalking about looking for an excuse to kill Theo, I just got kind of annoyed with the whole thing. Far too slow for me and not as interesting as I hoped it would be.
3) Leigh Bardugo-Six of Crows
Criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker has been offered wealth beyond his wildest dreams. But to claim it, he'll have to pull off a seemingly impossible heist:
Break into the notorious Ice Court (a military stronghold that has never been breached) Retrieve a hostage (who could unleash magical havoc on the world) Survive long enough to collect his reward (and spend it)
Kaz needs a crew desperate enough to take on this suicide mission and dangerous enough to get the job done - and he knows exactly who: six of the deadliest outcasts the city has to offer. Together, they just might be unstoppable - if they don't kill each other first.
I'm afraid I didn't like anything about this book. The setting feels like the Victorian slums from way back, a setting I don't greatly enjoy in books. There were a ton of Dutch place names which I found hard to remember and there was so many that I couldn't keep them straight in my mind to follow the story. There were also a pile of names of people and their positions that all seemed to merge into one pile of confusion as the book went along as the meaning of the foreign words were not being explained to the reader. Great if you know Dutch but other than that, too confusing. I couldn't follow or imagine the places, never mind emerse myself into the world. There were endless descriptions of every single place we visit which I found quite boring. I'm not a fan of things being over described. I know people would call it world building but to me it felt more like padding. There was too much pointless stuff thrown in that wasn't relevant to the story like the young guard, his love for a woman, his job, being ridiculed by his colleagues...I mean he dies straight after so why bother giving his life story?
I hated the characters. I found them all quite one dimensional and under developed. Kaz is a criminal mastermind but I couldn't find anything about him to like as he had little personality to him. Most of his crew were so underdeveloped that they might as well not be there as you would read about them then forget them five minutes later. Inez was the only one with potential to be interesting. The plot was meant to be about a heist but 100 pages in, Kaz hasn't even gathered his chosen crew never mind planned it or did it! It was so slow in getting to the point and I found myself really bored. I never did get to the heist.
I wouldn't read anything else by the author.