Monthly Archives: May 2011

Witchy Sisters

I finally got around to reading the only Drake Sisters book that I hadn’t read yet. The series is one of my favourites by Christine Feehan. I love all her books but these books and the Ghostwalkers were the first ones I started to buy because I couldn’t wait for the library to get them. Oddly enough, it was the first story, “Magic in the Wind” that I hadn’t read yet and I still don’t actually own it. Because it’s a short story, I’ll have to find one of the books that it’s in. I may have to buy the collection book with Oceans of Fire in it, although I already own it.  Apparently, it was available by itself at one point but now it’s out of print. That sucks.

Anyway, what’s the series about? It’s about seven sisters who have special witchlike powers (although they never call themselves witches). Each has her own individual power in addition to the general stuff. They live in a magic house on a cliff in a small town where everyone knows them and is protective of them. The sisters are all celebrities or do dangerous government work, which leads them into dangerous situations during which they meet the man destined to be their true love. The stories could have been incredibly corny or shallow plotwise and I probably still would have enjoyed them but I think what I love about Christine Feehan’s books is the harder edge to them. She is not afraid to have something really horrible happen to her characters. For example, one of the sisters gets slashed across the face with knives and is permanently  scarred, another is actually raped during the course of her book, and some of the men were tortured. After all of that though, the ending is happy and no one is randomly killed off. Just the way I like it.  I realize that this is not really new, especially for the paranormal romance genre but she just does it so well.

Now the Drake sisters are all engaged or married, so what’s next? Well, one of the sisters’s men is the seventh son of a seventh son that was ripped from his family as a child and all the brothers had powers as well and were trained as assasins and secret Russian agents. The new series already started with one of those brothers (who actually appeared in Elle’s story) coming to Sea Haven and hooking up with a woman who has several close friends (who she considers sisters) that she lives with. They all apparently have powers too and I’m assuming that their true loves will be Prakenskii brothers . The first book was really good and I can’t wait for the next one.

What I’m reading right now: Wake audiobook, Gregor and the Code of the Claw audiobook, and Ultimate Avengers: Crime and Punishment by Mark Millar.

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Choose-Your-Own Adventure Comic

Okay, so I know that this isn’t exactly a new concept. In fact, Meanwhile by Jason Shiga is apparently a complete graphic novel done in this style. I have yet to read that one but it’s on my list.

Anyway, I was reading volume 3 of the Unwritten and, to my surprise and delight, there was a whole chapter done this way about two thirds of the way through the volume. At first it seemed kind of random but it starts to make sense when you consider that it explains the background of the character Lizzie Hexam. The choices of various paths at certain points in the story mirror the different ways that other characters perceive what was happening to Lizzie. Although the information that the chapter was conveying was fairly ambiguous and complex at points, not to mention really important to the main storyline, the way it was told was simple enough to work with the format. And it totally blew my mind.

It also made me remember why I had a love/hate relationship with Choose-your-own adventure books as a kid. While I have always loved the idea of multiple paths and plots in a story, I always wanted to read them all which can be nearly impossible. I used to get really frustrated with them and give up. Thank God this was only one chapter. At the end, I did go back and read the few pages that I missed.

What I’m reading right now: Library Wars: Love & War vol. 4 by Kiiro Yumi, City of Fallen Angels (I’m half way through), Wake audiobook and Gregor and the Code of the Claw audiobook.

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I’m In Love…

… with the Gregor the Overlander series on audiobook.  I had started listening to audiobooks while I was on checkin and got completely addicted. I had been intending to read the series for a while, even before I read the Hunger Games series but hadn’t gotten around to it so when I saw the first book on the juv shelving cart, I knew it was fate (or probably just coincidence). If you’re not familiar with the series, this is the basic premis of the books: while babysitting his baby sister Boots, 11-year-old Gregor follows her into a vent in their apartment’s laundry room and finds himself falling into a secret underground world. In this world Gregor discovers two things; that he plays a part in the ancient prophecies of the humans who settled there long ago and that his father, who went missing two years ago, had fallen into the Underland as well and has been held captive by the Rats. As the series goes on Gregor goes home and comes back a few times, there are more prophecies and you can tell that the story is building towards something major.

Anyway, I just finished listening to Gregor and the Marks of Secret and luckily our had the next one on shelf. The whole series is narrated by Paul Boehmer and it took me a little bit to get used to his style but I really enjoyed him, especially when he does Boots’s voice. I may look him up to see if he’s done anymore audiobooks.

This is the last Gregor book coming up and I’m going to be sad when it’s over, although I’m hoping she didn’t do a mass killing off of characters at the end like she did in Mockingjay. That being said, a lot characters have died already. Oh well, here’s hoping.

What I’m reading right now: The Forest of Hands and Teeth (I’m almost done), Wake on audiobook, The Unwritten vol 3: Dead Man’s Knock  by Mike Carey, and City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare.

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Why Patricia Briggs and Jim Butcher must be the same person.

Okay, so they clearly aren’t the same person but as I was reading Grave Peril a few weeks back I was struck by how similar the Mercy Thompson series and the Dresden Files series are. In a good way. I had read Silver Borne not very long before so it was still fresh in my mind.

The books of both series are fast paced thrillers in well developed urban fantasy worlds. Both are mysteries in their own way. Both are written in first person. The biggest similarities, in my mind are in regards to the main characters, Mercy Thompson and Harry Dresden. Both characters are loners who have isolated themselves from their past (at least at the beginning of the series). Both characters have some emotional and physical scars (Harry more than Mercy on this one). Both have the same kinds of magical creature friends; werewolves, vampires, fae. Both characters drive VW Bugs. I just love that they both have this really snarky yet optimistic attitudes that keep them going through all the numerous almost dying experiences and keep them going after answers with great determination. I supose that there are a plethora of other series that could fit the same description (maybe not the VW Bug though) but I feel like there is something about these two in particular that link them in my mind. It could be the writing styles, it could be the characters, but I do know that I can’t pick up a Mercy book without thinking about Dresden and vice versa.

God, I love them.

What I’m reading right now: The Forest of Hands and Teeth still, Royal’s Bride by Kat Martin, Gregor and the Marks of Secret by Suzanne Collins on audiobook, and Wake by Robert J. Sawyer on audiobook.

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My First Blog Post Ever! Okay, Not Really.

Okay, so I had a blog when I was 18 or so. I admit it. Let’s just say it didn’t last long and was boring as hell. So why am I trying again? We’ll get to that.

So, about me. I’m a library assistant in a really awesome public library in Canada. In university, I took elementary education and after graduation I subbed for a couple of years. That sucked. So when a summer job came up at the library, I jumped on it. By the time the summer ended, I had secured a full-time permanent position at another branch that was actually closer to where I live. Yay me! That was almost three years ago and I haven’t looked back.

Why a blog? Clearly, it’s because I want to be cool. Maybe, not. Actually, at work I had start following readers’ advisory blogs/ book blogs (I’m not sure what they’re really called) to improve my RA skills and I became fascinated. It occurred to me that I could do something similar. I often have thoughts about certain books or genres or authors and, although I do have people at work I can discuss these things with, I thought it could be fun to just throw them out into cyberspace and see if anything comes back. Maybe nothing will come back and I’m okay with that too. It’ll just be nice to get my thoughts out of my head and semi-organized. We’ll see how it goes.

What I’m reading right now: River Marked by Patricia Briggs and The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

Next time: Why I think Patricia Briggs and Jim Butcher must be the same person.

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