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The Queen of Grass and Tree (Southwind Knights #2)
B.E. Priest
Progress: 22 %
The Opal
Michael Siemsen

Riding the Unicorn by Paul Kearney

Shirley, a book review.

Shirley - Susan Merrell

Let me preface this review by stating that I received this book as an advanced reading copy from Penguin books. This was an ebook and I was in no way compensated mfor my review. Now, on to the review. I selected this book to read, not knowing anything about Shirley Jackson and having onlky read a few of her stories without knowing who wrote them. Listed as a thriller and an homage to Jackson's horror stories is, in my opinion, misleading to the reader. I found nothing Thrilling or Horrific in this book. What I did find is a fictional biography intertwined with real people and events. The story mainly centers on a girl coming to grips with motherhood, marriage, and adulthood all in one summer. There is a loose back story of wrong doings at the hands of her parents, and a missing mother who is briefly sought then forgotten. Through the course of the novel, the main character comes in contact with Shirley Jackson and idolizes the way she lives her life. This idolization is repeated over and over through every character she meets. There are instances of supernatural occurences which I attribute to the character's lack of her own self worth and they don't expand out into true supernatural events like a Stephen King arc. Interactions with party guests are lackluster and the instances of the Jackson children are done with so little emotion I'm not sure why they were included at all. In the end, I find myself feeling neither excited nor let down that I am done reading this book. This is a quick read, and fans of Mrs. Jackson may find a bit to pull from here but don't be misled by the genre misrepresentation.

I, Iago: A Novel

I, Iago - Nicole Galland I've never read Othello, not sure how I dodged it through the years. Now I have to read it to see the flip side of this intricate tale. Very well done, a pleasure to read.

On Cats

On Cats - Doris Lessing It's about cats. Not especially well written, or engrossing.

Song of Achilles

The Song of Achilles - Madeline Miller A well done retelling. Romance, war, and politics all told with just enough nuance to not make it salacious or cumbersome. Everything the movie Troy should have been but failed.

The Outlander

The Outlander - Gil Adamson thoroughly enjoyed this book. hard to believe this is her first novel. look forward to more from this author.

Cloudsplitter: A Novel

Cloudsplitter - Russell Banks Ponderous. Wordy. Awkward cadence. Repetitious.

Good Omens

Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch - Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman I couldn't stand to read Terry Pratchett books when I was young, and not even Neil Gaiman can help me get through this one.

Neverwhere: A Novel

Neverwhere - Neil Gaiman An Alice in Wonderland meets Fisher King kind of adventure as told by a truly gifted storyteller. That's all my review because I'm off to read another Neil Gaiman book.

Birdsongs

Birdsongs - Jason Deas enjoyed it greatly. good characters, nicely hidden plot. good touch with the old rock and roll names. very pleased. I'll read his work again, and soon I hope.

Untitled Miss Peregrine Sequel

Hollow City - Ransom Riggs I really enjoyed the first book in this series. I wished I had stopped there. I don't see how this advanced the story at all. It just seems as though it is a way to prolong the franchise. I won't be spending time or money on the third book.

Cool Blue Tomb

Cool Blue Tomb - Paul Kemprecos My first book by this author. Normally, I can not stand to read a book in first person. If you plan to write your book in that tense, read this first and do it right. I will be diving more into this author's work for sure. Very well done and a quick, pleasant read.

The Legend of Devil's Creek

The Legend of Devil's Creek - D.C. Alexander couldn't finish this one. way too much coarse language for no reason. the college classroom asides really detected from the underlying sort and seemed to try and make the means justify the ends.

Black Mountain

Black Mountain - Greig Beck There was a whole lot going on in this book at one time. Definitely didn't lack for action. A little implausible, but fun.

Dandelion Wine (Earthlight)

Dandelion Wine - Ray Bradbury I have never seen so many adjectives and adverbs, so many I'm not even sure which word they describe. When I'm 30% of the way into a book, I like to have some idea what is going on. Not in this one. The halting, spastic, nonsensical storytelling just leaves me asking why? If not for the descriptive words this could be a postcard, and should garner about as much praise. I've never been a Bradbury fan and this just cements my reasoning.

A Dance With Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, #5)

A Dance With Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, #5) - George R.R. Martin And now the wait begins for books Six and Seven.