book reviews


I moved most of my book reviews out of my blog because I thought they were sort of starting to take over...  Now I try to limit it to books in my 50/50 challenge and ones that have really made a impression.  I love to read and have been making an effort to fit more books into my life the past couple of years.  Lately I've been really addicted to audiobooks too, as they fit into my busy schedule quite well.  Below are my ratings and/or reviews of what I've recently finished reading.  Check the tags to see if I "read" the audiobook version, the Kindle book, a physical book, or if it was from the library.  I try to avoid spoilers because I personally hate them, but I do often include quotes I liked in my reviews so beware if that worries you!



What I've Recently Finished Reading:

A Feast for Crows
4 of 5 stars true
What is dead shall never die... I've read a few pretty negative reviews of this 4th book in the series, but I enjoyed it. The beginning was a little tough to get into, but it picked right up after a bit and gave some good detail to som...
tagged: audiobooks
Drop Shot
3 of 5 stars true
tagged: kindle and library
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
3 of 5 stars true
I liked it, but having seen the movie I think it took something away from the book to already know who the Half-Blood Prince was and what was going to happen at the end.
tagged: audiobooks and library
Outlander
3 of 5 stars true
Read this book on the beach this week. It was good for that. So many people have told me how good it was that I think I was expecting a bit more. However, hot Scots in kilts are always a welcome distraction...
tagged: kindle and library
You Suck
3 of 5 stars true
I don't think there has been a Christopher Moore book that I haven't liked yet. Some I've enjoyed more than others, but they are all fun and quirky. I really liked this one because not only did we get to revisit a previous story and ch...
tagged: audiobooks
Girl in Translation
4 of 5 stars true
This was a Goodreads recommendation for me and I really liked it. Some times there are no easy choices and we don't always get everything that we want no matter how much we want it.
tagged: audiobooks
At Home: A Short History of Private Life
2 of 5 stars true
I like Bill Byrson's writing a lot, but I'm not sure how to rate this book. There were some really interesting parts that I thoroughly enjoyed, but some parts that really dragged for me. I loved all the science and inventions and histor...
tagged: kindle and library
A Dirty Job
3 of 5 stars true
Nice to see some old characters again!
tagged: audiobooks
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
3 of 5 stars true
I'm finding Harry to be a bit more whiny in the books compared to the movies...
tagged: audiobooks and library
The Night Circus
4 of 5 stars true
I'm not really sure how to describe this book. It was both dark and magical. The level of detail in Morgenstern's allows you to feel like you are actually the at the circus. I'm curious to see what this author writes in the future.
tagged: library and kindle
The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror
3 of 5 stars true
Not my favorite Christopher Moore book so far, but still very entertaining. It was nice to revisit some characters from the past and see what they are up to now.
tagged: audiobooks
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: The Secondary Phase
2 of 5 stars true
Sadly this one didn't really hold my interest either... I think I'd be beth off just reading the books rather than listening to the radio plays. Oh well...
tagged: audiobooks
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
3 of 5 stars true
I liked this book as much as you can "like" a depressing story. I was expecting it to be better than it was based on the hype I had heard about it. Still, Oskar was an interesting character and there was something about the interconnect...
tagged: kindle and library
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
2 of 5 stars true
Wanted to love it... Wasn't super impressed. Think I need to read the actual book.
tagged: audiobooks
Tricked
4 of 5 stars true
I want to be a druid.
tagged: audiobooks
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?
4 of 5 stars true
I have recently read a few books by female comedians (Samantha Bee, Sarah Silverman, Olivia Munn) and I have to say I liked this one the best. Maybe just because out of all of them I think I relate to Mindy the most. This was a quick, ...
tagged: kindle and library
Hammered
4 of 5 stars true
I didn't love the plot of this one quite as much... I still loved the characters (particularly the dog!) but felt like Atticus was making poor decisions. However, it did explain why everyone hates Thor and set the stage for lots of futur...
tagged: audiobooks
Hexed
5 of 5 stars true
There was some serious traffic on my way home from work this evening, so I was able to zip through this second book. I am still quite enamored with this series. On to the next one!
tagged: audiobooks
Hounded
5 of 5 stars true
It takes a lot for me to give a five star rating, but I loved this book. I have a thing for Druids, Dryads, act anyway. Elves as well. I like all things that are connected to the earth. When I occasionally play WOW, I like my druid n...
tagged: audiobooks and favorites
Shootin' the Shit with Kevin Smith: The Best of the SModcast
2 of 5 stars true
I don't really know how to rate this book. The two stars is more a commentary on the format, not the content. I like Kevin Smith, but I think it didn't translate well to book form. It's basically just a transcription of the best of SM...
tagged: kindle and library
I Know I Am, But What Are You?
3 of 5 stars true
This is third book I've read that was written and read by a comedian in a short time. I'm always curious about how people turn out the way they do. It's fun to hear about their lives in their own words and in their own voice.
tagged: audiobooks
Rock Paper Tiger
4 of 5 stars true
I really liked this book. I thought the plot was rather interesting and original. Possibly not the best written, and a little predictable in places, but an interesting story. Definitely worth reading.
tagged: audiobooks
The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption, and Pee
2 of 5 stars true
I'm not a huge Sarah Silverman fan, but I got this book on sale at some point. I'm always curious about people's stories. How did Sarah Silverman become who she is? The book itself was ok. I found Sarah to be more endearing as a pers...
tagged: audiobooks
Soon I Will Be Invincible
3 of 5 stars true
You know what? I liked it. Many reviewers had harsh things to say about it, but it was fun. Who does like reading about an evil genius trying to take over the world? It was definitely a quick read. It was silly. It was entertaining...
tagged: audiobooks
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
3 of 5 stars true
All done! On the waiting list for the 4 book... So far I haven't noticed too many big differences between the movies and the books, but there are some little details that are interesting.
tagged: audiobooks and library
Dreams of Joy
4 of 5 stars true
It took me forever to get through this book. Not because I didn't enjoy it, but mainly just because I haven't had much time to read. Time for audiobooks yes, time to sit down and actually read, not so much. Then a couple library books...
tagged: kindle and physical-book
1Q84
3 of 5 stars true
I really don't know what to say about this book. It was good, but weird. Really, really weird. I'm still not sure if I know exactly what it was about. Murakami has one strange imagination... I enjoyed it but not enough to make it ...
tagged: audiobooks
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
3 of 5 stars true
Book 2 down! On the library waiting list for books 3 & 4...
tagged: audiobooks and library
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
3 of 5 stars true
I've seen all the movies and enjoyed them, but never read the books. When the digital editions popped up on the library page last month I figured why not? The last couple of movies seemed to hint at things in the books that they did no...
tagged: audiobooks and library
Heat Wave
3 of 5 stars true
I love the show Castle and I think it is such a genius idea that they went ahead and published these books by the fictitious author "Richard Castle." The story was only ok, but how do you really judge it? I mean he is a fake author aft...
tagged: kindle and library
Deadlocked
2 of 5 stars true
I'll keep reading because I really liked this series at first and I love the show, but the last couple books have been sort of disappointing. This one followed that trend. I feel like it was really rushed and felt rather flat. The cha...
tagged: audiobooks
First Lord's Fury
4 of 5 stars true
I zipped through this series... All six books in only three weeks. I think I still like the Dresden Files better, but I enjoyed this series as well. I find it amusing that it was written in response to a bet. I felt like the character...
tagged: audiobooks
Princeps' Fury
4 of 5 stars true
One more to go...
tagged: audiobooks
Captain's Fury
4 of 5 stars true
Oh Jim, you're making me question my loyalty to Harry... I'm really starting to like Tavi.
tagged: audiobooks
Cursor's Fury
3 of 5 stars true
Did you know this series was written as a bet? I didn't. According to Wikipedia: "The inspiration for the series came from a bet Jim was challenged to while a member of the Delray Online Writer’s Workshop. The challenger bet that Ji...
tagged: audiobooks
Beauty
1 of 5 stars true
Absolutely pointless. I like this series, but this did nothing to advance the plot and was sooo short I can't believe I paid for it!
tagged: kindle and physical-book
Academ's Fury
4 of 5 stars true
Harry is still my favorite, but I'm officially hooked on this series as well now. The first book was sort of slow, but this one picked up the pace a bit.
tagged: audiobooks
Furies of Calderon
3 of 5 stars true
I LOVE the Dresden Files. I think Jim Butcher is a great writer and Harry is one of my favorite characters. I was hoping to love this series as well. I'm torn about this first book though. For the first two thirds or so I struggled t...
tagged: audiobooks
Cornflakes with John Lennon: And Other Tales from a Rock 'n' Roll Life
5 of 5 stars true
I loved this book. If you are a rock fan this is definitely worth reading. Great stories and quotes from some of my absolute favorite artists. I think I might have to add this one to my favorite books list. As a book and music lover ...
tagged: audiobooks and favorites
Darkly Dreaming Dexter
3 of 5 stars true
I've only seen the first season and a half or so of the show, but enjoyed it (though it is creepy to be hoping the serial killer gets away with it...). It seems like the first season of the show followed this first book relatively close...
tagged: audiobooks
A Storm of Swords
4 of 5 stars true
Oh George don't you know how attached to characters I get? This about sums it up: JKRvsGRRM Definitely still enjoying this series though... Wish I got HBO so I could watch the show too.
tagged: audiobooks
The Weird Sisters
3 of 5 stars true
I think I liked this book so much because I could relate to the girls. Reading was such a huge part of my life growing (and still is something I love to do) that I understand their love of books. It's definitely a sort of girly book, b...
tagged: audiobooks
Suck It, Wonder Woman!: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek
3 of 5 stars true
This was a SUPER quick read. And it was pretty entertaining. Most of it made me laugh, but there was one serious chapter about her grandparents that was pretty sad. Maybe it's because I just lost my grandfather, but that part definite...
tagged: audiobooks
Supergods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us about Being Human
2 of 5 stars true
I didn't dislike this book, but it wasn't what I was expecting based on the title... The first half was very informative about early comics and the history of comics (I found how the styles and plots changed with the events and beliefs o...
tagged: audiobooks
Madame Tussaud: A Novel of the French Revolution
3 of 5 stars true
This is the second Moran book I've read (the other was Cleopatra's Daughter). I like historical fiction anyway, and I think Moran does a great job. I find the French Revolution fascinating and who hasn't heard of Madame Tussaud? I als...
tagged: audiobooks
Deal Breaker
3 of 5 stars true
I got a bunch of "first" books of different series a while back when Audible was doing a "find a new series" sale. This was another one from that say. Good mystery. Hints about the protagonist having and interesting past. I'll probab...
tagged: audiobooks
One For The Money
3 of 5 stars true
I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. Good mystery, fun and endearing characters (I love that Plum has a hamster named Rex that she brings in her bedroom for company). Amazing literature? No. Quick fun read? Yes. I'm defi...
tagged: audiobooks
A Caress of Twilight
2 of 5 stars true
Ehh. This series is ok... They're quick reads, but I'm not super intrigued. Once I start a series I have a hard time giving up on it though, so I'll probably end up eventually reading them all. Hamilton definitely has a list of favo...
tagged: audiobooks
A Kiss of Shadows
2 of 5 stars true
I'd been warned that this series wasn't very good. I have mixed feelings about Hamilton's Anita Blake series, but overall find them entertaining reads. I'm not sure how long I'll stick with her second series (this one). I'm not super ...
tagged: audiobooks
The Book of Merlyn
3 of 5 stars true
I liked this one better than the previous two. I think my favorites in the series (The Once and Future King) were the first and the last. Mostly likely because those where the ones that included Merlyn and Archimedes and focused on Art...
tagged: audiobooks
The Candle in the Wind
2 of 5 stars true
Ugh, still finding the characters unlikable. Maybe I will like the last book better when Merlin returns?
tagged: audiobooks
The Ill-Made Knight
2 of 5 stars true
I wanted to like this story abut Lancelot and Guinevere, but I found them to both be sort of unlikeable characters.
tagged: audiobooks
The Queen of Air and Darkness
2 of 5 stars true
The first book of the series was better... still, I like most versions of the Arthurian legend so I am sure I'll finish the series.
tagged: audiobooks
The Sword in the Stone
3 of 5 stars true
I love the whole Arthurian legend, so why not read these? Archimedes is definitely my favorite character. Also, I'm pretty sure that whole part with the badger was the inspiration for the honey badger video....
tagged: audiobooks
How to Be an American Housewife
3 of 5 stars true
I am fascinate with the traditions and beliefs of other cultures and I love a book that gives me some insight into the lives of others. I enjoyed this book very much. The first half of the book is from the perspective of an old woman l...
tagged: audiobooks
Big Sex Little Death: A Memoir
3 of 5 stars true
Interesting. I knew just about nothing about Susie Bright so I didn't really know what to expect. She definitely had a very interesting life. I think my favorite part was when they were discussing the movie Chasing Amy.
tagged: audiobooks
Damned
3 of 5 stars true
Another library audiobook. Palaniuk is a weirdo. There's no doubt about it. I think this is the third book of his that I have read. They are all strange and Rant (like this one) was sort of gross in parts, but it's like a train-wreck...
tagged: audiobooks and library
The Invention of Hugo Cabret
2 of 5 stars true
I saw this book on the library audiobooks list and figured I would check it out because of all the acclaim the movie has received. It was ok. Expected a little more, but didn't hate it either. Maybe I'll check out the movie when it ma...
tagged: audiobooks and library
Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day
2 of 5 stars true
This story was sort of like Cinderella and Mary Poppins mashed up for adults... It was fun and quick, and a tad bit racist at parts. Enjoyable but not a stand out in my mind. I feel 2 stars is sort of too few, but three stars is too m...
tagged: audiobooks
Journey to the Centre of the Earth
3 of 5 stars true
This is one of those books I would have thought I read as a child (I read a lot as a kid), but I don't think I ever did. When I saw that Audible had the version performed by Tim Curry on sale I figured I might as well "read" it.
tagged: audiobooks
Fluke: Or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings
4 of 5 stars true
Christopher Moore has an amazing imagination. His books are great because you have NO IDEA what is going to happen. Since he is not confined by the normal restrains of reality it is really hard to predict what is going to happen. I am...
tagged: audiobooks
The White Tiger
4 of 5 stars true
This book is written in the form of letter where the protagonist is telling his life story and describing the events that led up to him becoming both successful and a murderer. I know very little about India, so this showed me an intere...
tagged: audiobooks
Hit List
3 of 5 stars true
Officially all caught up on this series. Though not as good as some of the earlier books, this one was better than the last few. Having Anita in a new city away from all the other characters seemed to help. I always like the books whe...
tagged: library
Bullet
2 of 5 stars true
Two stars is generous... These books are just getting bad. I had no problem with the storyline of this book, but Hamilton's writing just isn't what it was in the earlier books. She repeats herself frequently, throwing the same phases a...
tagged: kindle
Double Whammy
3 of 5 stars true
I wouldn't have guessed that I enjoy a mystery about bass fishing, but I did. Again Hiaasen sucked me in with he quirky characters. This is the last book I have by him, and have some other stuff I plan on reading next, but I will come ...
tagged: audiobooks
Flirt
1 of 5 stars true
Another super short book like Micah was. I wasn't all that into this one. I know a lot of peoeple have given up on Anita, but I have still enjoyed the books even as they changed over time. This one just wasn't very good, even I can't de...
tagged: library
Tourist Season
3 of 5 stars true
Fun read. I liked the quirky characters. I got this book because I had previously bought Double Whammy on sale from Audible, and when I realized that there was a book written before it of course my slightly neurotic personality forced ...
tagged: audiobooks
Skin Trade
3 of 5 stars true
This one was ok. Most of the "regular" men in Anita's life were not featured much since she was out of town. I like Edward, but I don't know if I like the direction his character is moving in. I also don't like Anita's whiny self doubt l...
tagged: kindle
Wicked
2 of 5 stars true
Um, I had planned on enjoying this book... I just didn't really like it. With all the hype I thought I would love it. Maybe the show is better than the book? It had potential, but I just couldn't get into it. Oh well, on to somethin...
tagged: audiobooks
Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
4 of 5 stars true
This book was HILARIOUS. That is all.
tagged: audiobooks
Blood Noir
3 of 5 stars true
I am flying through these books over vacation this week. I will be all caught up on the series in no time at all. Are they great? No. Do they still suck me in? Yes. Maybe it's because I sort of want to be Anita Blake... who wouldn't...
tagged: kindle
The Harlequin
3 of 5 stars true
Not bad. Better than some of the previous ones. Glad Anita is learning some restraint. Richard still annoys me, but I like most of the other guys. Not sure about Haven yet. Was happy Edward made an appearance, we haven't heard from ...
tagged: kindle
Norwegian Wood
3 of 5 stars true
I hadn't previously read anything by Haruki Murakami (other than the short story The Elephant Vanishes) but have been very curious about him for quite a while. I've heard that you shouldn't judge the author based on this book alone as i...
tagged: audiobooks
Wizard's First Rule
2 of 5 stars true
Definitely not Tolkien. I wanted to like this book, but I just wasn't that into it. Maybe because I've been really impressed with the other series that I've been reading (All Souls, Dresden Files, and Game of Thrones in particular). I c...
tagged: audiobooks
Micah
3 of 5 stars true
Um, was this actually a book? It was so short I read it in a couple hours... I really liked that I got to know Micah a little better, I like him as a character and it was interesting to get some backstory about him. However, the book was...
tagged: kindle
Incubus Dreams
3 of 5 stars true
Yes, this is the Anita Blake that I like. Dealing with her personal life, raising zombies, and helping the police solve crime. I wouldn't say I'm squeamish about the sex scenes, but the super violent sadistic story lines were starting to...
tagged: kindle
Cerulean Sins
4 of 5 stars true
I liked this book much better than the last couple (though I did like Obsidian Butterfly). I think I tend to like the story lines where Anita is raising zombies and working for the police better then when Hamilton takes her away from th...
tagged: kindle
Good Omens
4 of 5 stars true
Who doesn't love a good book about the end of the world? Once again I took advantage of an Audible sale and quite enjoyed this book. Quotes: The end justifies the means thought Aziraphale, and the road to hell is paved with good intent...
tagged: audiobooks
Masques
2 of 5 stars true
This is the first book by Briggs that I have read. It was alright. I am not going to be too judgmental as even the author knows this isn't her best book (she explains in the intro that she didn't know much about writing yet when she wr...
tagged: audiobooks
Moonwalking With Einstein
2 of 5 stars true
This book was alright. It was interesting, but not as interesting as I thought it would be. I liked the sections that talked about how we moved from scrolls to books, and I also really enjoyed the part where he discusses the implicatio...
tagged: audiobooks
A Discovery of Witches
5 of 5 stars true
This book ROCKED. I had no idea what to expect. I often get sucked into Audible sales and this one was from their best of 2011 sale. I loved how Harkness swirled together actual history, science, alchemy, and fantasy. If you know me yo...
tagged: audiobooks and favorites
Narcissus in Chains
3 of 5 stars true
Couldn't find the audio version of this book so I had to actually read it (not that I have anything against actual reading, I enjoy it very much, this was just a series I had mainly been listening to). I'm a bit all over the place with m...
tagged: kindle
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
2 of 5 stars true
This was another book that I remember my work book club reading a while ago, but at the time I was too busy to keep up and didn't get a chance to read it. When it was on sale on Audible I thought I'd give it a go. I can't figure out ho...
tagged: audiobooks
Shanghai Girls
4 of 5 stars true
More historical fiction, I am definitely on a kick right now. Throughout the book your sympathies bounce back and forth between the two main characters. Overall it was a great story, I love how in the end you have to take a step back a...
tagged: kindle
If You Ask Me: And of Course You Won't
3 of 5 stars true
Super quick read, very short. But, it's Betty White, how can you not love her? She is even the reader for the audiobook version so it's like she is personally telling you each of the stories.
tagged: audiobooks and library
The Tenth Circle
2 of 5 stars true
So I got this book cheap during one of Audible's sales... I don't know what to really say about it. I've read two other books by Jodi Picoult. Nineteen Minutes quite a few years ago when my work still had a book group and My Sister's K...
tagged: audiobooks
Brave New World
1 of 5 stars true
This is one of those books I feel like I should have read by now. I've had to read excerpts for a few different classes over the years, but never been assigned the whole book. I figured it was time. I understand why it's considered an i...
tagged: audiobooks and books-i-own
The Elephant Vanishes
2 of 5 stars true
I shouldn't really count this as a book, it was just a free short story from audible.com, but I did listen to it. It was slightly odd in the sense that nothing really happened. Other than of course an elephant vanishing...
tagged: audiobooks
Cleopatra's Daughter
4 of 5 stars true
Lately I've been really interested in historical fiction. This book was excellent. I'm not sure exactly how historically accurate it is, but the author's note at the end says that all the characters are actual people and their personal...
tagged: library and audiobooks
The Clockwork Universe: Isaac Newton, the Royal Society, and the Birth of the Modern World
3 of 5 stars true
This is exactly what I like in a nonfiction science book. It is well written and interesting. I learned a lot, but was not bogged down in technical information. I was very surprised by a lot of the details on Newton's life, and even thou...
tagged: audiobooks
Little Bee
4 of 5 stars true
Great book. I tend to be pretty stingy with my star giving (I get caught up in the written descriptions - 5 stars stands for "it was amazing" so I must reserve that for only my very favorite books). Little Bee deserves a solid 4 stars ...
tagged: audiobooks and library
Obsidian Butterfly
4 of 5 stars true
I actually liked this one a little better than the last few. I think it was because the author sort of moved back to the original story line of Anita working with police to solve super natural crime. I didn't really miss Jean Claude or...
tagged: audiobooks
Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs: A Low Culture Manifesto
3 of 5 stars true
I can't remember when I got this book. I must have started it at least 5 times, but never finished it. Always got busy with work or grad school and put it down without finishing it. I've had multiple friends borrow it, read it, and retur...
tagged: books-i-own and physical-book
Blue Moon
2 of 5 stars true
Oh Anita, what is going on with you? And, enough with the sound effects! I do not need to hear bones breaking. If the author does a good enough job writing the violence you shouldn't need sound effects to go along with it.
tagged: audiobooks
My Horizontal Life: A Collection of One-Night Stands
1 of 5 stars true
I've always found Chelsea Handler rather annoying... When I saw this audiobook on the library website I thought maybe I would like her better in writing than on Chelsea Lately. Unfortunately, though this book is rather funny in parts, it...
tagged: audiobooks and library
Burnt Offerings
2 of 5 stars true
I'm not sure I like where this series is going... I didn't love the first book, but then was really getting into books 2-5. The last two books have kind of moved away from the original plots of Anita raising zombies and helping the poli...
tagged: audiobooks

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