May 2012 Archive

My thoughts on Fifty Shades of Grey

This isn’t going to be like my usual reviews, because it seems pretty silly to review this book this book the way I would others. I to get my thoughts out there though, so here they are.

When I first started reading it all I could focus on was how absolutely terrible the writing was. The description of the office in the first chapter uses the words steel and glass about 8723928 times. I spent a lot of my time thinking that E.L. James should invest in a thesaurus. As the book went on the writing did get a little better, but not by much. I realize that this was originally fan fiction and it definitely reads like that. (Not to say there aren’t some extremely well written fan fictions out there, because there are.) It was definitely excruciating to read in terms of writing style. The theory I have about why this hasn’t been a problem is because the people who are loving this book and passing it around to all of their friends are not voracious readers. Maybe if I didn’t devour books the way that I do, I would have found this novel a little more pleasant to read. I think that I have  been learning about writing style and focusing so much of my life on how books are edited that I wasn’t really able to look past the problems in this book.

Story-wise I also felt this novel was lacking. Nothing really happened except in Ana and Christian’s relationship. The outside characters really didn’t play an important role and we never learned anything about them, except maybe that Ana found them annoyed because she complained every time someone asked her a question.

Now, all of this being said I do think I understand why this book is so popular. I remember reading Twilight back in the days when it was all hyped up and I liked it. I wouldn’t feel the same way going back and reading it now, but at the time I hadn’t read anything else like that. Twilight was the first book I had ever read where it felt like the hero devoted his entire being to the heroine. Now, I read this in high school and felt like that was what I wanted at the time. I wanted someone who was willing to be completely and totally devoted to me. This novel has almost the same feel, just in a more adult, kinky way. I think this type of relationship attracts people. Find a hero who never needed anyone else and never really paid attention to girls in a romantic type of way before and make him fall completely head over heels for a girl who is never noticed by anyone. I can see why that is appealing. All of us feel like Bella or Ana and want to be noticed by someone who is gorgeous and has never felt strongly about anyone else. I believe that the ability to use this book as an escape into that kind of fantasy is why this book is so immensely popular right now.

I also had a problem with the ending. Ana leaves him. That’s not a romance. They are not together at the end of the book. I don’t understand why this is being labeled as a romance and being nominated for awards when the story ends in a break-up. Yes, I know there are two more novels. I may or may not get myself to read them. I do feel like this novel was an eye-opening experience for me, especially because I want to go into publishing. Just because I find a book to be terribly written and for the heroine to have really crazy abandonment issues for no apparent reason (I say this because she’d cry every time he left), does not mean that it won’t be completely loved by the rest of the world. I may read the other two just to feel like I have a little more information about what people are looking for.

I do wish that people would use this book as a basis to start reading other things. I wish people would pick up books that aren’t the most popular thing at the time. You might be surprised at how much better those books can be. If you want erotic romance or something in this genre I can guarantee there are novels that you can pick up that you might find more fascinating than this one.

Posted by juliette in Book Review and tagged with ,

BaSatai: Outside In

by: Suzan Battah

Published: April 14th, 2012 by Smashwords

ISBN: 9781476247076

From Goodreads: Seventeen year old, Armani Radnelaq a full blooded BaSatai is plagued by a curse in her blood. A curse created from hate and designed to break the divide between two parallel worlds of Earth and H-trae when Armani’s blood is spilled in attack and she dies.

S’teuqoubs have been travelling back and forth across the divide for centuries without trouble. The BaSatai and Guardians monitoring activity and enforcing rules to ensure peace and harmony but if the divide splits and opens, a much greater number of supernatural S’teuqoubs will filter into earth destroying equilibrium which the BaSatai and Guardians will be unable to control. Humanity and the BaSatai will suffer and perish. The parallel divide must remain secure at all costs.

Armani has remained hidden on earth with her adopted father Elijah since her birth. She has been raised in the human way and fights her natural instinct to evolve into a BaSatai. The BaSatai in her requires her to evolve and shift, use her powers and strength. Yet Armani is freaked out by the need to shift. She smokes, has a bad attitude, must deal with aggressive bullies and control her natural BaSatai instinct. Her Guardian with BaSatai Warriors are coming for her. She refuses to accept her fate and doesn’t believe any BaSatai should die to protect her.

The blood curse maturing in her veins makes her a target for her enemies. Her Guardian Karhl and an elite BasSatai Warrior Rafael are the first to arrive and prepare her for her crossing over. Her attraction to Rafael complicates her purpose to stay on earth even more. They both insist she fall into line and follow their lead but she is not ready to leave earth just yet…

 

Okay, so I had a little trouble with this novel. It’s not that I didn’t find the world fascinating, because I did. The problem I had was that I didn’t know enough about it. I felt like there were things I was missing all the time. The story itself is very good and very interesting. The characters themselves are also very complex and I loved the emotions that ran so deeply through this novel. I just found myself very confused about a lot of things, and maybe that’s just something for me personally. I had trouble understanding why Armani seemed so unwilling to learn and do the things she knew would help, especially when she feels so guilty about all of these people pledging their lives to her. I also wish I had a better understand of what exactly this blood curse is and why it was necessary for her to be on Earth. Maybe these are things I missed myself. (I will admit I read this during the chaos of my graduation from college.) There was just so much about this book that I wish had been explained more. I didn’t understand why she knew so little about her people and didn’t know any others until Rafael and Kharl showed up because it seems like they had hangouts all over Earth and that their presence was quite prominent. I don’t know. I did find the world very fascinating and I definitely would want to read the next one because I am interested and want to know more about what’s happening and see if maybe some of my confusion can be cleared up. That being said the writing is very good and I did enjoy this story. I would recommend it to young adult and fantasy lovers, especially because I think some of the confusion was just me. After reading other reviews of this book it seems like I’m really the only one that had these problems so I’m hoping I get to read more and fix this. 🙂

Cupcakes: 

Buy from Amazon here: BaSatai: Outside In: Book 1 (Volume 1)

Sleight of Hand

by: Kate Kelly

Published: September 5th, 2011

ASIN: B005LI4B42

From Goodreads: Chance Spencer, doesn’t steal. Not any more. Suddenly suspected of stealing half a million dollars of art work, he can’t afford to have the FBI delving into his covert past. Chance coerces the real thief’s daughter, Sarah O’Sullivan, into helping him flush her wily father out of hiding. But his plan quickly deteriorates when he falls in love with his enemy’s daughter.

 

This was definitely a unique read for me. When I first started reading it, I wasn’t sure how I felt about either one of the characters. I felt like I was missing too much of their story to understand what was happening and I felt like Chance wasn’t a hero I could grow to love. But as I continued reading I got caught up in it. I found myself really caring about the back stories of these characters because it explained so much about what was happening and reasons they felt certain ways. By the end of this novel I was completely involved in Chance and Sarah’s story. It’s not often there’s a story I’m reading that makes me really feel like the two main characters have a connection. A lot of the time it doesn’t feel real to me. That wasn’t the case in this story and I definitely was invested in their love story. Everything surrounding the art theft was also very interesting and I found myself very curious and wanting to learn more about it, because it’s not something I would have ever I definitely would recommend this book to fans of romantic suspense! 🙂

Cupcakes:    

Buy from Amazon here: Sleight Of Hand, A Romantic Suspense (Stolen Hearts)

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Deadly Secrets, Loving Lies (HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!)

Deadly Secrets, Loving Lies by Cynthia Cooke

 

Family secrets must be kept, and painful wounds must be ignored.

After an all-out assault by a vicious terrorist bent on destroying her entire family, a former government agent must break the strict rules she has always lived by when she emerges from hiding to reluctantly accept the help of her all-too-sexy ex-lover. Running a deadly race against time, they rush to rescue her kidnapped sister, find her missing father, and bring the notorious villain to justice. But nothing ever goes as planned. Bullets fly, danger abounds, and their passion reignites even faster than the lies are flowing. But their stubbornly held secrets just might spell the end of their rekindled love and hopes for the future…as well as their very lives.

 

Buy this from Amazon here: Deadly Secrets, Loving Lies

Return to Me

by: Tara Fox Hall

Published: November 3rd 2011 by Melange Books

From Goodreads: Determined to find the source of the nightly creaking she alone can hear, Sam Reading discovers Harrison Benning, a ghost who becomes corporeal for one night of the year; the summer solstice. Their warm friendship soon becomes powerful love that lasts through decades, tragedies, and even beyond death.

This is another short story by Tara Fox Hall and I gotta say, I think I liked this one even more than Surrender to Me. I’m a sucker for those love stories where it seems absolutely impossible for two people to be together. This was really cute and I felt so unbelievably sorry for Harrison. This was a very short story, but definitely worth the read if you’re looking for something quick and entertaining. I felt like these few pages packed a lot more into them than I would’ve expected, but after reading Surrender to Me it isn’t that surprising! I would definitely recommend this short story though to anyone who loves a good paranormal romance.

Cupcakes: 

Buy From Amazon Here: Return to Me

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Surrender to Me

by: Tara Fox Hall

Published: September 23rd 2011 by Melange Books

ISBN: B005TLPVCC

This is a short story and normally I don’t read short stories unless it’s for a class because I prefer novels where I can get more fully absorbed in the story, but I didn’t feel like I was missing that with this story. The characters were beautifully written and drew me into their world. The story did move very, very quickly and it felt shorter than it’s 28 pages, but it was a great escape from reality for a short period of time. Devlin is a wonderfully written hero. He’s a vampire, but he’s not the type that is seen so much in stories these days. His personality is so different, but still very attractive. Anna is so completely trusting and loving that’s it’s hard not to like her. She’s completely someone that I would adore if she were in real life, just like I adored her character. This story was gripping, even if it was very short. I can’t wait to see what this author can do with a full novel!

 

Cupcakes:

Buy this from Amazon here: Surrender to Me

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