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  1. #381
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    I finished The Execution of Noa P. Singleton tonight. It's told in present day (while Noa's awaiting execution) and in flashbacks. Bit of a shocker at the end that I didn't see coming. Good for a first novel. You could tell that the author lived in Philadelphia - lots of casual Philly references. I think I liked it.

    Next up is The Golem and the Jinni.

  2. #382
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    ok, I realized that I have but hadn't read Murakami's The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles, so I think that's next on my list
    Q: Why can't I read the competition threads?
    A: Competition forums on the board are available to those with a Season Pass or a premium membership How to View Kiss & Cry

  3. #383
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    The Golem and the Jinni is done. LOVED!!! Such a great book. Evil spirits, malevolent magicians, clay women, all meeting up in the tenement melting pot of 1899 in NYC. It's totally going to be a book that I'll buy. I even loved the blue page edges on the book.

    Next up is The Burgess Boys. And waiting at the new (beloved) library is Mr. Penumbras 24-hour Bookstore. It looked interesting.

  4. #384

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    I finished Indifferent Heroes last night and liked it very much. One of the characters joins the WRNs and is posted to Egypt; another is captured by the Japanese in Burma. I particularly liked the way Hocking conveyed the horrors of war without ever going to the frontlines of battle. This morning I started the last volume in the trilogy, Welcome Strangers, which covers the post-war years and the beginnings of the Cold War.
    My job requires me to be a juggler, but that does not mean that I enjoy working with clowns.

  5. #385

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    I just finished The Man from Berlin by Luke MacCallin. Set in Sarajevo in 1943, the hero is a German officer who hates the Nazis. Interesting murder mystery, but could've used some editing. I like that the hero isn't perfect, but when I'm saying "GO BACK TO THE HOUSE AND LOOK AT THE MIRRORS" and it takes the hero another 45 pages to figure out he needs to do that, it's a little frustrating. Apparently, this is the first book of a series. Not sure I'll read the second one.

  6. #386
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    There was a cheap romantic suspense on Nook called Guilty as Sin. I figured out the killer on page 3 (it was not the author's intent). I stopped reading on page 5. I'd have kept reading to see how the author planned to introduce the killer, but I couldn't take the internal angst dialogue. I don't need two paragraphs every other page reminding me of how the pro tag felt about the situation to get how they felt about the situation. I don't think I've ever been less interested in what the characters did so quickly in a book. If I were an agent or editor, I'd have never sent this through the process. I guess there was a reason it was cheap.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  7. #387

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    There was a cheap romantic suspense on Nook called Guilty as Sin. I figured out the killer on page 3 (it was not the author's intent). I stopped reading on page 5. I'd have kept reading to see how the author planned to introduce the killer, but I couldn't take the internal angst dialogue. I don't need two paragraphs every other page reminding me of how the pro tag felt about the situation to get how they felt about the situation. I don't think I've ever been less interested in what the characters did so quickly in a book. If I were an agent or editor, I'd have never sent this through the process. I guess there was a reason it was cheap.
    RS is possibly the toughest sub-genre of romance to do well, because of the need to balance the two components in a believable way without short-changing either. I like it when it's done well, but my list of authors who are capable of doing so is very short.

  8. #388
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zemgirl View Post
    RS is possibly the toughest sub-genre of romance to do well, because of the need to balance the two components in a believable way without short-changing either. I like it when it's done well, but my list of authors who are capable of doing so is very short.
    Mine too. It's my favorite genre, but there are so few who do it well. This author was not on that short list.

    I've also finished JKR's the Cuckoos Calling. I've come to the conclusion that she really doesn't understand what made the HP series "magical." The writing is fine and the plotting is fine. She made the lead character flawed which was fine. But once again, she left out the key ingredient that made Harry engaging and that was his sense of humor. Rowling must think "adult" means dull. She throws in a bunch of adult themes and language but saying f*ck a lot doesn't make it adult. There were so many opportunities for her to do this and make it a good book instead of an average book. There is a reason it didn't sell but 1500 copies until they leaked her name as author. I find this same dichotomy in Nora Roberts/JD Robb. Her Roberts books are boring, but she somehow manages to make Eve Dallas funny and there is a sense of humor that permeates all the other characters. Rowling needs a good friend to sit down with her and tell her adults can laugh. Adult novels can be humorous, even mysteries. She should real Elmore Leonard, Robert Crais and so many others (although Crais has the same issue when he writes a Joe Pyle book rather than sticking to Elvis Cole--his efforts to separate the two aren't that good). Why do authors feel they have to go with and angst when they have a good thing going with self-effacing humor?
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  9. #389
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    stupid double post
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  10. #390

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    Mine too. It's my favorite genre, but there are so few who do it well. This author was not on that short list.
    Would you be willing to share your short list? Mine includes Pamela Clare, Jill Sorenson (possibly the most consistently enjoyable RS author for me at the moment), Suzanne Brockmann (not her recent stuff, though) and some of Cindy Gerard's books. I'm not a fan of La Nora but am willing to consider her In Death books - can I jump in at any point or do I need to start with the first one?

    Rowling must think "adult" means dull. She throws in a bunch of adult themes and language but saying f*ck a lot doesn't make it adult. There were so many opportunities for her to do this and make it a good book instead of an average book.
    In her defense, I think that the perception that adult/quality/worthy literature must mean dull and unlikable characters is one that is shared by many. Which is why I've given up on literary fiction for the most part.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zemgirl View Post
    Would you be willing to share your short list? Mine includes Pamela Clare, Jill Sorenson (possibly the most consistently enjoyable RS author for me at the moment), Suzanne Brockmann (not her recent stuff, though) and some of Cindy Gerard's books. I'm not a fan of La Nora but am willing to consider her In Death books - can I jump in at any point or do I need to start with the first one?


    In her defense, I think that the perception that adult/quality/worthy literature must mean dull and unlikable characters is one that is shared by many. Which is why I've given up on literary fiction for the most part.
    I like some of Linda Howard's stuff, but it really varies from book to book. You could just start with any of the death books, but they really are best read in order as each takes place a couple of months after the previous book and you get the progression of her and Roark's relationship along with the changes in all the other secondary characters. As with any long series (I think she's up to 23 or something), some books are better than others and you get to a point where you want Eve's demons to get on with things. Which she eventually does. However, I still look forward to the next book because Eve does change (my biggest issue with Evanovich----I quit reading the Plum books after about number 13 but was tired of them way earlier). But, discussion about Evanovich and the Plum series are a topic in and of themselves because IMHO, Janet turned the writing of the series over to her daughter long ago.

    I agree about literary fiction. I don't waste my time. But, JKR could have made this a good book and I think she plans to make it a series. She just need to get over the literature notion and do what she does best. She doesn't have to prove anything. It is odd how you can like some author's works and not others. I love Alexander McCall Smith's No.1 Ladies Detective series and despise his other works (although the wiener dog books were pretty funny). Somehow he make Maa Ramotse someone I'd like to meet while I'd throw tomatoes at his Scottish characters.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  12. #392
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    There was a cheap romantic suspense on Nook called Guilty as Sin. I figured out the killer on page 3 (it was not the author's intent). I stopped reading on page 5. I'd have kept reading to see how the author planned to introduce the killer, but I couldn't take the internal angst dialogue. I don't need two paragraphs every other page reminding me of how the pro tag felt about the situation to get how they felt about the situation. I don't think I've ever been less interested in what the characters did so quickly in a book. If I were an agent or editor, I'd have never sent this through the process. I guess there was a reason it was cheap.
    Isn't that a Tami Hoag:? As in "massive bestsellers of the 90s" Tami Hoag?

    that you would have turned it down. It's cheap because it's old, not because no one would buy it. I'm not a Hoag fan, but a lot of other people sure were.
    Trolling dates all the way back to 397 B.C. - People began following Plato around and would make fart noises after everything he said.

  13. #393
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Isn't that a Tami Hoag:? As in "massive bestsellers of the 90s" Tami Hoag?

    that you would have turned it down. It's cheap because it's old, not because no one would buy it. I'm not a Hoag fan, but a lot of other people sure were.
    No, it's new and by Jami Alden. It may be a rewrite of a Tami Hoag or that may be a pseud, but it's got a 2013 pub date. It's still stupid regardless.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  14. #394

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    Quote Originally Posted by RockTheTassel View Post
    Sydney Carton's final thoughts at the end is something to add to my list of favorite literary passages.
    That's truly a great passage. But my personal favorite is the passage where he's walking the streets of Paris at night.

    And you're not kidding about a lot packed into one book. Seems like every time I reread it, or even just think about it, I discover something new!
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club

  15. #395
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbell1 View Post
    The Golem and the Jinni is done. LOVED!!! Such a great book. Evil spirits, malevolent magicians, clay women, all meeting up in the tenement melting pot of 1899 in NYC. It's totally going to be a book that I'll buy. I even loved the blue page edges on the book.
    I loved it too. Such an imaginative and original story. I can't wait to see what she comes up with next.

  16. #396
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    No, it's new and by Jami Alden. It may be a rewrite of a Tami Hoag or that may be a pseud, but it's got a 2013 pub date. It's still stupid regardless.
    That's the problem with titles. They can't be copyrighted.

    The new one has pretty good reviews. Apparently Alden writes pretty steamy smut. Maybe you should have stuck with it.

    I have a new suspense author to try; I keep putting in on the back burner because I have the same reaction to a lot of "suspense" books. They just aren't very good.
    Trolling dates all the way back to 397 B.C. - People began following Plato around and would make fart noises after everything he said.

  17. #397

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    That's the problem with titles. They can't be copyrighted.
    Except movie titles, apparently. Witness the flap about "Lee Daniels' The Butler."

    Who's your new suspense author, Prancer?
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club

  18. #398

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    The new one has pretty good reviews. Apparently Alden writes pretty steamy smut. Maybe you should have stuck with it.
    The writing in the sample seemed awfully mechanical to me, and the reviews I've come across suggest that Alden spends too much time on sex scenes and not enough on plot and character development, so I imagine I'd have DNF'd it, too. Steamy sex scenes can (and should) carry an erotic romance, but it's not enough for an RS novel to work.

    Personally I don't like the serial killer variety of romantic suspense anyway; while some suspense plots do seem conducive to the development of a romance, that's really not one of them for me.

    I bought a Jeannie Lin book - Tang Dynasty China sounded like a nice change of pace.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    That's the problem with titles. They can't be copyrighted.

    The new one has pretty good reviews. Apparently Alden writes pretty steamy smut. Maybe you should have stuck with it.

    I have a new suspense author to try; I keep putting in on the back burner because I have the same reaction to a lot of "suspense" books. They just aren't very good.
    Hmmmm....I didn't get far enough for any smut. That's the advantage to paper--you can just flip through till you get to the smutty stuff. My finger gets tired swipeing the nook screen looking for it.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

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    Somehow he make Maa Ramotse someone I'd like to meet while I'd throw tomatoes at his Scottish characters.
    I completely agree about the Scottish characters. I only read one - don't need to read any more.

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