Friday, June 14, 2019

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏ 

Murder Mystery
Psychological Thriller
Graphic Depictions of Slaughter
Amazing Character Development
So F-IngTwisted
Wow, This Shit Is Dark

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 

4.3STARS - GRADE=A-


With Audio Performed by Rebecca Lowman, Cassandra Campbell, Mark Deacons and Robertson Dean



๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏ 


My first Gillian Flynn novel, yeah...that means I've never read Gone Girl, I did see the movie, though.  That is probably why I've never felt the need to read the book, I guess.   Dark Places has been made into a movie too...and it's on Netflix so, I'll be watching it soon.  The Narrators were great in this.

The beginning of this has graphically depicted murders, it was really difficult to listen to. I had no clue of the depth into which this story would go, the book is aptly titled, for sure.  There is also some scenes of senseless farm animal slaughter towards the end, that was also really difficult to listen to.  It was dark and sad, and yet compelling as hell.  Libby Day is painted as an unlikable character...but seriously, how do you not be f*cked up with what she had to live through, and she f*cking owns that shit.  The ending threw me for a loop, and others have said that they didn't find it believable...I can see that, but inevitably however you feel about the ending, there's no denying that this is one twisted story.



๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 


Plot⇝ 4.3/5
Narration Performance⇝ 5/5
Main Characters⇝ 4.3/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 4/5
The Feels⇝ 4.5/5
Pacing⇝ 4/5
Addictiveness⇝ 5/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 4/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 4.3/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 4.3/5
Ending⇝ 4.3/5
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ Love it...actually
Setting⇝ Kinnakee, Kansas and Other Places in the United States.
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
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Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly

๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏ 


YA, That's Heavy on the Y...Light on the A
Children's Fantasy & Fairytales
Beauty Isn't Always Pretty
Continuing Cinderella's Story Through Her Stepsisters
Darkish...No Bippity, Boppity, Boo Here
Ultimately Uplifting

With Audio Performed by Jayne Entwistle


๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 


4.3STARS - GRADE=A-



๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏ 


Full disclosure...I was contemplating DNF'ing this one...but only because it felt kind of juvenile to me.  I'm thinking, it appeals more to the Middle-School-Age Child than the Adult who is a child at heart.  It had me rolling my eyes a little too much.  That being said, Izzy and crew eventually won me over, and I couldn't help falling for their inspirational tale.  Even the narration is notable.

This is a continuation of Cinderella's story but from the point of view of one of her "ugly stepsisters", Isabelle.  All the fairytale-ness of Cinderella is here...with fairy godmothers and animated mice, goofy monkey's and a fox, it was kind of ludicrous at times.  Ludicrous and yet, at some point, it became completely uplifting.  There is quite a lot of talk about how this is about female empowerment and loving yourself for who you are, and it is all that, all that and more, even.  This will make an excellent movie, one the entire family could enjoy, despite the darkishness of it.



๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 


Plot⇝ 4/5
Narration Performance⇝ 4/5
Main Characters⇝ 4.2/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 4.3/5
The Feels⇝ 4.3/5
Pacing⇝ 3.7/5
Addictiveness⇝ 3.8/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 4.5/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 3.8/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 4.2/5
Originality⇝ 4.5/5
Ending⇝ 5/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Not Really...
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ Gorgeous
Setting⇝ France
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
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Monday, June 10, 2019

Say You Still Love Me by KA Tucker

๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏ 


A Favorite Author
Part Adult Contemporary Romance
Part YA Romance
Love at First Site
Summer Camp
Corporate Real Estate
A Tragic Accident

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 


4.5STARS - GRADE=A-



๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏ 


I haven't been able to finish a book I was reading (rather than listening on Audio) in less than a week in quite some time.  I found myself actually wanting to read this.  So thank you, KA Tucker, for that.  I've always liked this Author's stories and this one is no exception.

Told in alternating chapters between their teen years at Camp Wawa and their 30's in Lennox, NY (actually, a real city just spelled differently), made for a very interesting story.  I found the past and present tenses equally compelling.  I didn't think this was going to have anything hard hitting like most of her books do, but by the end...I found myself shedding a few tears.  It was sad, and the ending doesn't wrap everything up in a perfect little bow, but it was a satisfying ending...it was more like real-life tends to be...a little messy but still doable.



๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 


Plot⇝ 4.5/5
Main Characters⇝ 4.5/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 5/5
The Feels⇝ 4.5/5
Pacing⇝ 4.5/5
Addictiveness⇝ 5/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 4.3/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 4.5/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 5/5
Originality⇝ 4.7/5
Ending⇝ 4.5/5
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ I don't know that it fits the story...it's not like they ever sat on a dock overlooking a lake with colder-weather clothes on.  They did stand on a cliff, though...but whatever.
Setting⇝ Lennox, NY & Camp Wawa
Source⇝ I received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
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The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski

Book #2 of The Winner's Trilogy


 ๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏

Dystopian/Fantasy
Lies & Betrayals
YA
Revolution
Crappy Narration
Book #1 Rating: ☆3.8☆

With Audio Performed By Justine Eyre


๏ ๏ ๏  My Rating ๏ ๏ ๏ 


2.5STARS - GRADE=D+



๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏ 


I really need to quit listening to books narrated by Justine Eyre because I really do not like her voice inflections/tonality or whatever you want to call it.  I thought I could get past it, but I can't.  If I finish this series, I need to wait about a year to do it, maybe then I can listen to her narration without cringing.

Overall, it's difficult for me to say how I feel about this second book, I was hoping the story would wow me enough and make the lack of good narrator unnecessary, unfortunately, it didn't do that.  I didn't really find the content exciting until the last half hour of the book.  Otherwise, I just found it boring.  This series is well-loved by many, so my experience shouldn't influence you too much, other than to the skip the Audio, maybe.  This is one that should be read.


๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 


Plot⇝ 2.8/5
Narration Performance⇝ 1/5
Main Characters⇝ 2.5/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 3/5
The Feels⇝1.5/5
Pacing⇝ 2.5/5
Addictiveness⇝ 2.5/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 2.8/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 3.5/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 3.5/5
Originality⇝ 3.5/5
Ending⇝ 3.5/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Yeah...
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ Very eye-catching...
Setting⇝ Valoria...I believe.
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
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Friday, June 7, 2019

Lies Beneath by Anne Blackwood Brown

Lies Beneath #1


๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏ 


MerPeople
Killer Mermaids
Lake Superior Setting
Insta-Romance



With Audio Performed by MacLeod Andrews




๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏ 


Lies Beneath is not a bad story, more like a meh story.  The idea behind it is an interesting one, mermaids who kill to survive and live in the Great Lakes...seriously killer Mermaids are kinda cool.  Unfortunately, the idea of it is cooler than the actual story.  Some Authors have the ability to pull a reader into the story and make them really feel it, but I didn't feel that with this Author.  Initially, I was drawn to this story because the setting is Lake Superior, being from Michigan, I thought it was super cool to have a setting close to home, even though it was a part of Lakes Superior by Minnesota, I still kinda dug it.  The narration was decently done, Macleod Andrews doesn't usually disappoint.  I did not know until a couple of days after I finished this that it has two more books...I thought it was a stand-alone.  The ending did kind of leave it with things unsaid, but I was fine with that.  So, I honestly don't think I will continue the series.

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 


3.2STARS - GRADE=C+



๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 


Plot⇝ 3.2/5
Narration Performance⇝ 4.5/5
Characters⇝ 3.5/5
The Feels⇝ 2.3/5
Pacing⇝ 3/5
Addictiveness⇝ 3.3/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 4/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 3/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 3.5/5
Originality⇝ 4/5
Ending⇝ 3.7/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Meh...not really.
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ A bit deceiving, since the pov is from a MerMan
Setting⇝  Lake Superior, North Shore in Minnesota 
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
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Saturday, June 1, 2019

Mimic by C.L. Denault

The Prodigy Chronicles #2


๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏ 


Dystopian
Magically Fantastic...Maybe
Young Adult
Futuristic Techy
Romance
Gambit Book #1 Rating ☆5☆



๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏ 


This disappointed me in so many ways...I absolutely loved Gambit and stalked Denaults Twitter relentlessly waiting for updates on the second book.  Maybe, I built this up in my own head too much and set myself up for disappointment, I don't know???

I am confused with where this series is going overall.  I don't get what motivates this society, other than violence, greed and the domination of the poor.  I don't know fully, how to put into words what it made me feel, all I know is it feels like it's going in a different direction than what it felt like in the first book.  I love the romance between Reece and Willow, and that was all but ignored in this book, and that probably has something to do with how I feel.  I will read the next book to see where it's going and because I'm hoping I can find my way back to what I felt in book #1.

I also would like less nattering about fashion and what they are wearing all the time, seriously you could shave about 100 pages off this book with less about that.

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 


3.5STARS - GRADE=B-



๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 


Plot⇝ 3.5/5
Main Characters⇝ 4.5/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 4/5
The Feels⇝ 3.5/5
Pacing⇝ 3/5
Addictiveness⇝ 3/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 3/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 4/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 3.5/5
Originality⇝ 5/5
Ending⇝ 3.7/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Yes!
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ It's pretty...
Setting⇝ The London Core
Source⇝ Own Kindle eBook
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May Re-Cap

I got a lot of Audiobooks in this month and read one book, yeah, just one.  Actual reading seems to be something of the past for me lately.  I need to find my way back to it because there are some books that don't have an Audio version.  I do tend to find lots more actual reading time in the summer, so we'll see...13 books total for the month is pretty good though.  Daisy Jones & the six was clearly my favorite book of the month and as of right now Best Book of the Year.

๏ ๏ ๏ A Bookish Obsession Monthly Reading Re-Cap ๏ ๏ ๏



(Audiobook) The Nowhere Child by Christian White

Highlights Include:

Missing Child
Mystery Thriller
Flashbacks
Religious Cult

Twisty

Finish Date:  05/01
☆4.3☆STARS - GRADE=A-








(Audiobook) The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Highlights Include:

A Classic
Young Adult
Stay Gold, Ponyboy, Stay Gold

Finish Date:  05/03
☆4.7☆STARS - GRADE=A-








(Audiobook) Little Monsters by Kara Thomas

Highlights Include: 

Psychological Thriller
Murder Mystery
Teenage Drama
Twisted And A Little Dark

Finish Date:  05/05
☆4.5☆STARS - GRADE=A-







(AudiobooK) Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Highlights Include:

Sex, Drugs, & Rock N' Roll
The 70's
Bring on the Tears
Full-Cast Narration
Interview Style
All The ☆Stars☆

Read:  05/08
☆5+☆STARS - GRADE=A++





(Audiobook) The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski

Highlights Include:

Heavy-ish on the Fantasy
Light on the Dystopian
YA
Revolution
Enslavement
Romance (of a sort)

Read:  05/11
☆3.8☆STARS - GRADE=B





(Audiobook) Aurora Rising by Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufman

Highlights Include:

Deep Space
Squad Goals
Gobs of Sarcasm
Galactic Beings
Trippy Space Shit
Older YA/Borderline New Adult

Read:  05/15
☆3.5☆STARS - GRADE=B-







(Audiobook) Two Can Keep A Secret by Karen M. McManus

Highlights Include:

Small Town Atmosphere
Halloween Themed Amusement Park
2 POV's
Possible Linked Murders

Read:  05/17
☆3.5☆STARS - GRADE=B-








(AudiobooKs of novella's listened to separately)
The Whispering Hollows by Lisa Unger

Highlights Include:

The Whispers - Novella 1
The Burning Girl - Novella 2
The Three Sisters - Novella 3
Psychic Powers
Some Mystery

Read:  05/18
☆3☆STARS - GRADE=C








(Audiobook) Little White Lies by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Highlights Include:

A Mystery with Layers
Debs & Squires
Southern Belle Charm
Who's Your Daddy Issues
Adults Who Are Youngish

Read:  05/19
☆4☆STARS - GRADE=B+







(Audiobook) Before We Were Strangers by Brenda Novak

Highlights Include:

Murder Mystery
Possible Crime of Passion
Second-Chance Romance
Small-Town Texas
Family Secrets
Sex-Plicit (A Splash)

Read:  05/21
☆4.3☆STARS - GRADE=A-






(Audiobook) Hotel Ruby by Suzanne Young

Highlights Include:

Creepy Hotel Setting
You Can Check In...
Ghosts
Splashes of Romance
Grief

Read:  05/23
☆3.3☆STARS - GRADE=B-







(Audiobook) We Rule the Night by Claire Eliza Bartlett

Highlights Include:

A Different Kind of Magic but Confusing
A War Between Nations
Fantasy
Steampunk-ish
Girl Power

Read:  05/29
☆3.2☆STARS - GRADE=C+







(Kindle eBook) Mimic by C.L. Denault

Highlights Include:
Dystopian
Magically Fantastic...Maybe
Young Adult
Futuristic Techy
Romance
Gambit Book #1 Rating ☆5☆

Read:  03/31
☆3.5☆STARS - GRADE=B-






12 Audiobooks, and eBook
13 Books Total
4,617 Pages



Plus 2 DNF"s





Best Cover of the Month goes to:


That Phoenix is pretty cool...and I've needed a book cover with a Phoenix for a reading challenge for a while now.

Friday, May 31, 2019

We Rule The Night by Claire Eliza Bartlett


 ๏ ๏ ๏  Highlights ๏ ๏ ๏ 


A Different Kind of Magic but Confusing
A War Between Nations
Fantasy
Steampunk-ish
Girl Power


With Audio Performed by Chloe Cannon




๏ ๏ ๏  My Thoughts ๏ ๏ ๏ 


This will appeal to many out there who are tired of the special snowflakes in fantasy novels but still crave strong female characters and the ones who don't care for any romance or info-dumping.  This is a character-driven steampunk fantasy that centers on female relationships and the trials of war with an interesting but confusing magic system.

But beware...because sadly, for me, I just didn't get this world that the Author created.  I had no clue what was going on half the time and the rest, I just didn't care.  This nation that they are going to war for didn't feel like a nation worth fighting for...I mean if you're considered a traitor after surviving a day and a half in enemy territory...then seriously, WTF?  This had the potential to be so much more than it was because what I did glean of this world felt super-cool.  But overall, it just felt super-unrealized. 

The Narration was decently done, but of course, I would've liked a second narrator for each of the two female narrators.  She did give a little distinction between LinnĂ© and Revna's voices, though.

๏ ๏ ๏  MY RATING ๏ ๏ ๏ 


3.2STARS - GRADE=C+



๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 


Plot⇝ 3/5
Narration Performance⇝ 4/5
Main Characters⇝ 3.5/5
Secondary Characters⇝ 3.7/5
The Feels⇝ 2.5/5
Pacing⇝ 3/5
Addictiveness⇝ 3/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 3.5/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 2.5/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 2/5
Originality⇝ 4/5
Ending⇝ 3/5 Cliffhanger⇝ 
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Book Cover⇝ Gorgeous
Setting⇝ The Union
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
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Dark Places by Gillian Flynn