2019 Reading Challenge

2019 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 0 books toward her goal of 200 books.

Book Review: Black Fall by D.J. Bodden

I LOVED this one!

I enjoy supernatural tales and have read a lot of them. It’s getting tough to for me to find original plots and characterizations of different creature types as a result. I don’t usually mind – there’s a comfort level in reading things that feel familiar – but it’s always a delight when I find something that feels fresh and engages me from the get-go. Black Fall did just that. Continue reading Book Review: Black Fall by D.J. Bodden

Book Review: Blackquest 40 by Jeff Bond

I was intrigued by the cover and concept for this one – both caught my attention straight away and promised a dark tale of corporate greed. The book went a little farther than I thought it would, and while I must admit that I rolled my eyes once or twice and had to suspend disbelief more than a few times, the tale on the whole was an entertaining and enjoyable ride.

What starts as a corporate training exercise quickly devolves into a radically insane race against time – but to do what, really, and for whom? Resolving those questions becomes an obsessive mission for Deb Bollinger, a software prodigy with some personality quirks that waver between believable and not-so-much so… Continue reading Book Review: Blackquest 40 by Jeff Bond

Book Review Blurb: Echoes: The Saga Anthology of Ghost Stories by Ellen Datlow (Ed.)

This was a very strong collection, ranging from campfire ghost stories to more traditional horror with a ghostly theme. Most of the stories held my attention and interest – which is something that doesn’t often happen with anthologies. I’m not a short-story person generally, but I went in knowing a number of the authors represented and was cautiously optimistic based on that, but interestingly I found that several of the previously-unknown-to-me writers produced the stories I enjoyed the most – most notably Paul Tremblay’s opener, Vincent J. Masterson’s “Linger Longer”, Gemma Files’ “The Puppet Motel, and especially A.C. Wise’s “The Ghost Sequences”. Richard Kadrey and Seanan McGuire delivered the type of solid story I expect from them, and I also enjoyed the Garth Nix (which was darker than I expected). All in all it was a creepy and engaging set of tales – not to be read at night before bed, which is when I usually read my review books!

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my review copy.

Book Review: An American Spy by Olen Steinhauer

This time, it’s not just Milo Weaver in the hot seat…

The third-in-series continues to bring the action, but it spreads the story around among the characters a bit more – which I enjoyed, although Milo remains (BY FAR) my favorite focal point. I wasn’t sure if I was going to like the way it was organized, once I realized how it worked: basically you run through a stretch of time with a focus on one character’s perspective and the things they knew. In the next section you shift focus to another character, with backtracking, time-overlap, and time moving forward. It was a novel way of filling in the gaps and a touch confusing at first but by the time I reached the final section I realized I really liked it because it made the revelations trickle in and the deceptions and secrets and lies and half-truths all the more compelling for their slow reveal… Continue reading Book Review: An American Spy by Olen Steinhauer

Book Review: Million Eyes: Extra Time by C.R. Berry – AND IT’S FREE!

What’s that, you say? FIVE STARS from ME for short stories?! (And they’re FREE?!) It’s true, your eyes are not deceiving you – or are they??

This was the most excellent world-introduction I’ve seen in some time. C.R. Berry has offered us glimpses into his pending series that are provocative, conspiracy-laden, entertaining, and delightfully crafted. The things I normally find irritating about shorts – the shortage of character development, compressed plots and revelations, and the overall lack of detail – were enticements here, rather than irritants. Continue reading Book Review: Million Eyes: Extra Time by C.R. Berry – AND IT’S FREE!




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