Some books I like. And one…not so much.

Mostly doing some housekeeping here. Since most of my book reviews are on Goodreads, Amazon, etc. I thought it was a little redundant to have them on a dedicated page here as well. So today I’m posting my old reviews (along with a new one) here in the blog and will do the same with all new reviews from here on out.

Thanks for reading!

And now for a review never before seen on this site…

Reviver (Reviver Trilogy, #1)Reviver by Seth Patrick

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Loved the premise for this story, which was why I started reading. People known as “Revivers” are able to bring back the dead–temporarily at least–to offer loved ones the chance to say goodbye or to give homicide detectives crucial first-hand testimony. I was expecting much more from this book than a cookie cutter thriller and unfortunately, that’s what this is. Sure, there was the other-worldly paranormal stuff thrown in as well, but for me there was nothing new or exciting here. The characters in the story–mostly flat and lifeless–mirror my opinions of “Reviver.” But I’m sure that in the proper hands, this trilogy will be a wildly successful movie franchise.

And from the archives…

Cold MountainCold Mountain by Charles Frazier

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A testament to the power of great writing.

Anyone who’s read Cold Mountain can tell you that, for the bulk of the story, there’s not a whole heck of a lot happening. Sure, at its heart there’s Inman’s epic journey and Ada’s struggles on the farm (and the occasional scrape with assorted ne’er-do-wells and low lifes) but for the most part, it’s a slow build to the end. But I, for one, could not put this book down.
Frazier’s talent for description and characterization carry the story brilliantly through what–in the hands of a lesser writer–would be a tough slog. Although it’s been some time since I’ve read this book (I’ll most likely be reading it again) there’s one scene in particular that has stuck with me–Inman’s interaction with the blind vendor outside the hospital. Again, not much going on there, but the authenticity of their relationship and the dialogue was extraordinary.

A great read–one that will stay with you, I promise.

 

Gone GirlGone Girl by Gillian Flynn

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A good, engaging read.
Dynamic writing, interesting characters and alternating chapter cliffhangers kept me turning the pages. Although I found myself rooting for a certain ending, the one Ms. Flynn wrote was even better. In the end, very satisfying and well worth the time spent reading.

 

Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American HistoryEmpire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American History by S.C. Gwynne

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A real eye-opener.

This book was a very well written account of a (in my opinion) neglected chapter in this country’s history. My education of this time period centered around the Civil War, but in the western plains an equally dramatic struggle was playing out. Without sugar-coating the actions on either side, Gwynne tells it like it was, letting the reader form his or her own opinion of events. And although there’s never a question of which side eventually comes out on top, there is much to learn here. Not only about the vast and powerful Comanche empire, but the tenacious settlers and Rangers who mounted the final challenge to their reign.

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1)A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Well written with good description and character development, but in the end, not my cup of tea. I’m not sure if Martin writes in other genres, but if so, I would definitely give him another look.

 

JoylandJoyland by Stephen King

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Combining elements of a good crime novel (the cast of characters, usual suspects and the trail of evidence) with King’s wonderful characterization and descriptions, this was a quick and very satisfying read.

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