Archive for the ‘Book Review’ Category

Review: Control Point, by Myke Cole

February 22, 2012

Control Point (Shadow Ops, #1)Control Point by Myke Cole

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Stay tuned! At the end of this review is something REALLY COOL!

This was a great read. I generally avoid fantasy set in the modern (or sorta) world, and never considered myself a military-anything buff. So Control Point was a very-pleasant surprise. I devoured the book in two days.

Cole does a great job of building an alternative reality that’s believable and authentic. He sprinkles in fantastic nuggets of how the world we know and live in now would react to a subset of the population suddenly popping up with magical powers. He examines the political and social impact without ever moralizing or making a judgment. It would be easy to draw a clear good/evil line in a story like this and get preachy but Cole did none of that.

All of this in the middle of taking us into a fully-realized alien world full of its own creatures and cultures and believable magic system.

This is a great debut and I’m thrilled to have found it.

But because every book has its faults, I do have the following complaints:

I couldn’t give Control Point five stars because Cole used one of my pet peeve writing techniques, internal monologue. I’ve gone on record before about how much I hate IM, but I know it doesn’t bother most readers so that’s probably neither here nor there to the majority reading this.

I also agree with another reviewer who wondered when Britton would “man up.” At some point it began to feel like he debated a point with himself, only to forget the next day what he’d decided the day before.

That said, neither of those annoyances were enough to override the imaginative plot and worldbuilding and the realistic action scenes. Definitely a recommended read.

Now here’s a great example of one of the best things about Control Point:

See, this is a challenge coin for the SOC, the Supernatural Operations Corps. You don’t get detail like this unless you’ve got a well-built world. Cole not only seamlessly knit together a fantastical world with ours, but did it without you noticing. No long info-dumps, no boring explanations. Just great details like this drizzled in and among the action.

And the coolest thing about these coins?

I got one. 😉

But seriously, great book, totally worth the read.

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Review: Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence

February 16, 2012

Prince of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #1)Prince of Thorns
by Mark Lawrence

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’m not the first one to point out that making an anti-hero work is really difficult; it’s a fine line between being disgusted by the actions and hating the character. Lawrence hit on the balance. I still walked away disturbed, perhaps more so at the end than I’d been all along. But Lawrence created all the right circumstances and a world that made Jorg what he is without justifying it, without apologizing for it, and making you think about the potential for the monster in all of us.

Chillingly wonderful character development.

Combined with an inventive storyline, a fascinating world, and a great pace and cast of supporting characters and you’ve got a book I read in one day. Just couldn’t stop.

Bravo.

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Review: Red by Kait Nolan

February 9, 2012

RedRed by Kait Nolan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The premise of this one so intrigued me that I picked it up, even though I’ve been feeling a bit glutted with YA books lately. I’m glad I didn’t pass it up. YA heroines often leave me feeling empty, as if they’re a bit shallow (some of that just being the effect of youth rather than bad writing.) But Nolan did a great job of giving us a scarred and complex heroine paired with a similarly scarred and complex hero and making their struggles and developing relationship utterly realistic (for werewolves.)

I was drawn right in and couldn’t put it down. Highly recommended.

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Review: Crash Into You by Roni Loren

January 26, 2012

Crash Into You (Loving On The Edge, #1)Crash Into You by Roni Loren

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a great read. Hot and steamy without being so focused on the erotic elements that it neglected the plot. I was pleasantly surprised at the depth and intricacy of the conflict that is so often missing in erotic romance, where hook-ups are often the whole point of the anemic storyline. Nice bit of mystery and suspense here to make the relationship that much more important and satisfying.

Well done and worth the read.

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Review: Eden by Phil Rossi

January 12, 2012

EdenEden by Phil Rossi

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was such a treat. The emotion Rossi evokes is real and universal. His hero is flawed and both mourns those flaws and accepts their inevitability. He doesn’t let the problems, inside or out, keep him from solving this fascinating mystery. The action here is subtle and suspenseful, inside a world that feels both mind-boggling impossible and painfully real.

Great read.

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