Reading Roundup…

It has been a while since I did a reading roundup post, so I thought maybe we could go over what we thought of the good, the bad and the ugly of some recent releases. Spoilers are possible, so proceed with caution if you haven’t read any of these.

night's honorNight’s HonorThea Harrison‘s latest Elder Races book almost read like a stand-alone title to me. We have only briefly seen Xavier in the past, and next to nothing about the Nightkind demense has been featured in previous books, so it was interesting to see inside another branch of the Elder Races. I liked the world-building, but I found myself a bit underwhelmed by the romance side of things, and dare I say it, but I found the characters a bit on the dull side. I didn’t really connect with them, especially with Tess, who was just too bland to hold my interest. Final Thoughts: Here’s hoping that things pick up again for the next one, Midnight’s Kiss.

dark bloodDark Blood – Hm, this one is a bit tricky. Christine Feehan is one of my guilty pleasures, but you go into her books knowing exactly what you are going to get (and this one was no different). I am glad to see this Lycan angle wrap up. I didn’t enjoy is the whole Carpathian language thingy (which grates on my nerves every book now), but it was especially distracting here. I don’t mind a small phrase or two in the Carpathian, but whole sentences followed by their translations gets awkward and takes me out of the flow of the story. Also, believe it or not, I found myself thinking a time or two that things were, well, unrealistic (ha!). I rolled my eyes at the Xavier/Xavion/Xav-something triplets angle, and the whole climactic battle scene actually struck me as funny. But I did like the characters, the acceptance of their mating early on, and I liked seeing so many old favorites, no matter how briefly. Plus – no flower scene! Bonus. Final Thoughts: Ok, not bad, not great. Hopefully on to another angle for the Carpathians.

shifting shadowsShifting Shadows – This collection of short stories from the world of Mercy Thompson is actually turning out to be quite interesting. Not all, or even most, feature our well known leads of Mercy, Adam, Charles or Anna, but they are set within the same world and have the same tone. I am enjoying reading one here and there before bed when I don’t want to get too involved in a full book and then stay up all night reading. The short story Alpha and Omega is what got me reading Patricia Briggs in the first place, and I loved reading it again in Shifting Shadows (for something like the 5th time, I’m sure). Final Thoughts: A nice collection, which looks great on the shelf with its pretty cover. Now, if only we could get a Kate Daniels world collection like this, I would be extra happy.

visionsVisions – The second book in Kelley Armstrong‘s Cainsville series was one of my most anticipated reads, and it lived up to my excitement. Book one read like a mystery with some paranormal aspects, but book two has much more of a supernatural feel to it. I liked the slow progression of the story, the development of the characters, the growing bond between Olivia and Gabriel (and, well, I like Gabriel). Final Thoughts: Great book. Great series. Looking forward to the re-read, and can’t wait for the next one.

We are now heading into the last few months of 2014, but there are some much-anticipated books that should keep me warm this winter. The absolute top pick for me is Ilona AndrewsBurn for Me (since I already read Archangel’s Shadows, that is). Seventh Grave and No Body from Darynda Jones should be intense, and Gena Showalter‘s long-awaited Torin story, The Darkest Touch, is also on the list. And while anthologies are not usually much to get excited about for me, the Ilona Andrews and Nalini Singh entries in Night Shift make this a biggie, too. Add in a few young adult titles that I am eying, and the rest of the year isn’t shaping up too badly at all.

Which of these have you read, and what was your take on them? Did you come across anything exciting (or disappointing, for that matter) recently, and what are you most looking forward to for the last quarter of the year?

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8 thoughts on “Reading Roundup…

  1. Judy says:

    I’m looking forward to the dead but not forgotten book, after the last Sookie book was disappointed , but I would to see what someone else does with the series.

  2. Tiger Lily says:

    I am waiting for the Night Shift anthology with Andrews, Singh, Shearing, and Brook; Burn for Me by Andrews; Unbinding by Wilks; Archangels Shadow by Singh; and The Kraken King by Brook as I didn’t read is as a serial. I plan to try CT Adams’ The Exile also. I am hoping some others will catch my eye because that is not many to read in a three moth period. Hopefully some people will post her some that they are looking forward to and that will give me some new ideas. Then, it is on to January and March of next year which have a ton of releases by authors whose writing I love!

  3. Jean says:

    I loved Visions by Kelley Armstrong. I’ve been a fan of hers since Bitten, however I’m still trying to finish that series. I think the visions/omen series is one of the more creative and engaging series that I’ve read recently. Can’t wait for the next round. I’m of course looking forward to all things Ilona Andrews and Nalini Singh.

  4. Cassandra B. says:

    I am currently doing a reread of the Guild Hunter series by Nalini Singh. I am looking forward to Ilona Andrew’s Burn for Me and the Night Shift anthology. I am excited about the new Guild Hunter book, of course. Laurann Dohner has a new New Species book coming out next week and another in October. I like this series, but it is published by Ellora’s Cave and there is some shady stuff going on there. Makes me leery. In November, I am looking forward to Robin D. Owens newest Celta book. I am already getting antsy to read Anne Bishop’s next installment in the Others series.

  5. Monika says:

    So far I have only managed Festive in Death by J. D. Robb, which I liked better than anticipated. I will also get around to Dark Blood. I look forward to Singh’s Rock Courtship and Archangel’s Shadow, Burn for Me and the Night Shift Anthology. I might give Wilks a whirl; do I need to start at the beginning of the series?
    I am also looking forward to Faith Hunter’s Broken Soul (Jane Yellowrock) and Dianna Love’s Demon Storm (Belador). Got my hands on an ARC of Geissinger’s Into Darkness, loved it, will send over my review if there is interest. It’s the last in her Night Prowler series, which I loved. The series is kind of dark and heart-wrenching, with lots of pain, but great. I definitively recommend to read the 5 previous books in the series to get the full impact, although I guess it could be read as a standalone.

    • Tiger Lily says:

      Hi Monika,
      I would recommend that you start the Wilk’s series from the beginning. The first book is Tempting Danger. The second book some people found a little hard to follow but I think they have all been really well written and interesting. The books have a primary couple that are major characters in some books and they become less prominent in other books where new couples are the focus. However, Wilks always comes back to them as a primary in books and includes the other couples as well. I enjoy all of the couples and i really find her world-building fascinating.
      I hope you give the series a try. There is nothing I like better than finding a series I like that already has a bunch of books written in it. Sadly, it doesn’t happen too often.

  6. cheryl says:

    I second the rec that you start Eileen Wilks from the start… you get more backstory and the progression of things that happen to the main characters and their circle of friends and enemies. I just finished a good book rec’d by others and was amazed how much I really liked it: Wickedly Dangerous by Deborah Blake.

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