Cronin’s Key by N.R. Walker

Cronin's Key (Cronin's Key, #1)Cronin’s Key by N.R. Walker
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

N. R. Walker should stick with contemporary storylines that don’t involve any world building. The vampire lore that was created here was nonsensical and complete bollocks. The logical argument of “cats like vampires -> cats protect vampires -> that’s why lions are on every bloody banner in the world -> there you have it, proofs of vampires are everywhere, you just have to look” is so ridiculous, it’s not funny anymore. The whole backstory was told in a few info dump scenes where Alec asked irrelevant questions that wouldn’t occur to anyone faced with that sort of stuff. I am not saying that the world couldn’t have been interesting, but the vampire angle was overdone and just impossible to believe.

I don’t mind insta-love or fated lovers one bit, but I’m not thrilled about the no-choice-at-all situation. Alec didn’t like it at the beginning, but was ok with it in the end, because all of a sudden he had convinced himself that he would have chosen Cronin anyway. How does he know this?

Anyway, apart from that “I can’t help loving you” situation which already diminished the relationship in my eyes the love scenes were boring to boot. I have read Blind Faith which had some scenes that were very nicely done. This led me to expect something along the same lines (especially since those two guys here had NO issues at all with each other) but I was disappointed. The connection between Alex and Cronin just wasn’t there. The love scenes were bland and uninspired. I have read random hookups in men’s restrooms that were more sensual. I can’t begin to describe how mechanical, emotionless and impersonal those scenes were. Plus, purring – unless you are a cat – is not on my top ten list of pleasure sounds. Cronin is supposed to be a vampire who kills for food, for crying out loud, he doesn’t purr!

A disappointing read. I will give the other books in this series a wide berth.

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Trinity Blue by Eve Silver

Trinity BlueTrinity Blue by Eve Silver
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As far as plot and atmosphere go, this 35 page novella leaves some novels that I have read behind. There should be more stories about Daemon and his kind (if there are more like him). Totally intriguing!

Jen and Daemon are great characters that deserve more exploration. I understand there are more books set in the same world as this novella but it seems Daemon is a one time character. Pity really! I loved him, what a handyman (among other things) to have around. For such a short story, it packs a punch.

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Making waves by Vivienne Savage

Making WavesMaking Waves by Vivienne Savage
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

After reading Vivienne Savage’s dragon shifter trilogy it was obvious I had to read “Making Waves” that takes place at Teo’s resort. According to All Romance this is part of the Mythological Lovers series, but as far as I could see the series so far consists of this one book.

Shifters seem to be still going strong and I thought that the genre is explored to its nth degree by now, but Vivienne Savage presents us a Hippocampus shifter. At first I thought this was a bit odd as I kept thinking of sea-horses, finding it slightly off putting. However, after some research it turned out Hippocampi are not as cutesy and tiny as I imagined. In fact they look like this (the horse that is, just in case you were wondering).


Neptun Fountain


Anyway, mythological creatures – this is definitely taking it up a notch from the usual wolves and tigers. But apart from that there was nothing extraordinary about the couple. There were some problems coming from various sides but nothing overly worrying, most of the issues got resolved before they became tedious and annoying. People behaved mostly reasonable and the heroine was not the silly kind. There were a few sad moments, but all in all the story left you with a fuzzy feeling – and isn’t this what most readers of this genre are looking for?

I wonder whether more books will follow and what creatures Vivienne Savage could possible come up with. A Minotaur comes to mind, especially as it already has a fitting legend attached to it. Or how about a shifter chimera? Once all the stops are out, anything goes.

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Scent of Scotland: Lord of Moray #1 by Mac Flynn

Scent of Scotland: Lord of Moray #1 (Lord of Moray, #1)Scent of Scotland: Lord of Moray #1 by Mac Flynn
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

This was a free read from All Romance and the cover looked exceptionally good, so I thought I’d give it a shot.

I think I can say that I am a very forgiving reader. As long as there is chemistry between the characters I accept a lot of crap. But there is really nothing about this story that appealed to me.

What’s wrong with it?

OK, first a short synopsis: Abigail, a very poor seamstress notices a carriage which emanates an enticing scent she can’t resist, follows it and eventually meets her lover/mate/master who fucks her senseless.

* Way too short. Considering that this is obviously the first part of an ongoing project there is way too much stuff packed into 35 pages. Abigail’s miserable life is described, she follows the carriage, gets kidnapped, stays overnight in an inn after an attempt to escape, arrives in Sctoland, meets the laird, has dinner and conversation, ends up in a dungeon, witnesses the transformation of the handsome laird to a horrrible beast and has sex with said beast. All this on 35 pages. Needless to say with all that action going on the characters themselves stay a bit in the dark.

* There is no, and I repeat, no chemistry between Abigail and the laird (I forget his name if it ever was given). Not surprisingly I didn’t feel a thing. There was not nearly enough time to develop any emotional bond between hero and heroine. The reason the sex was so overwhelming, mind blowing and generally awesome was the scent that indicates Abigail is the laird’s mate. You see, she cannot resist the scent.

* Strangely enough she could just five minutes ago. The bloke gives off the scent like there’s no tomorrow and Abigail resists it just fine. Once he turns into a beast with a snout the same scent is just irresistible.

* Sex with the beast. I get the whole shifter thing and have read my fair share of shifter romance. But under normal circumstances (if you can call it that) the sex usually takes place in human shape. Not saying that sometimes afterwards the shifter doesn’t turn into a cuddly wolf and whatnot, but the physical act itself is pretty much always between humans. Sex with a furry animal? Might be out there in shifter romance, but I don’t want to read about it.

* The laird asks her to lock him into a dungeon cell to protect her from the beast. He also warns her. She must not move a muscle or make a sound once he is in beast form, because the beast wants her and once it notices her the laird (who IS the beast) cannot control it any longer. God knows what the beast is going to do to her. About one minute later we know what that is because, well, what can I say, as soon as Abigail sees (and smells) the beast she moves, she screams and then she opens the cell door. And then she has the best sex ever – and I can only repeat, with an animal whose face obligingly transforms into something more human during the act, probably because kissing with a snout is a bit diffcult.

* After that scene the story comes to an abrupt end. From some comments on Goodreads I take it people see it as a cliffhanger, but after this there is really nothing I want to know about Abigail’s story anymore.

* The story needs serious editing. Apart from the odd word that doesn’t fit and needs to be removed there are some orthographic mistakes that I can’t overlook. A bell is not the same as a belle and even though a hansom might be a pretty sight it is certainly not handsome.

I liked the story idea, but the execution was just lacking in every aspect.

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From afar by Ava March

From AfarFrom Afar by Ava March
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I was thoroughly disappointed with this.

The opening scene turned me off. I knew there was some m/f and voyeurism involved, but the picture of Raphael sitting in a tree wanking away was something I could have done without. Where did this obsession with Aleric come from? He has never even talked to the guy; just from seeing him, he got so obsessed with him? I find that rather unhealthy, it makes me uncomfortable with the character.

Then, within a few pages, Aleric was turned and was perfectly ok with his new lifestyle. It seems due to some chemical reaction which was triggered by the turning (no other explanation was given) he all of a sudden was just as needy with Raphael as the other vampire was with him. It’s not that they had spent ANY time together that did not involve frantic sex. Is that supposed to be romance? Not in my book. In fact this is not even porn, because even porn needs some sort of normality in order for the sex to stand out (I am paraphrasing Umberto Eco here).

The story possibilities were all wasted. Katerina (of course, a Russian vampire queen) and her clan sounded quite interesting – apart from the obession with sex again -, but those characters fizzled out and were not followed up at all. Btw, anyone else found the names Katerina and Aleric reminiscent of the Vampire Diaries?

Because there was no emotional bond to speak of (at least I didn’t see any) between Aleric and Raphael, I found myself skimming the sex scenes, i.e. large parts of the book. Finally a conflict was in the offing, i.e. Aleric’s understandable anger and distress over the stalkerish behavior of Raphael, but even that ended with sex almost immediately. Instead of running away from that weirdo who observed him in secret for years, Aleric forgives Raphael within minutes.This couple did not get me involved or attracted me in any way.

Abrupt does not even begin to describe the ending. We go from sex to a half baked plan to leave and that’s it. I had 17% to go with the story and thought there was something more substantial still coming up, and then – wham – the end within a paragraph. The remaining 17% of the book were excerpts and ads for other books, which annoyed me a lot.

I am not saying that this story couldn’t have been good on a mere 85 pages, but given the fact that most of those pages were about sex, it just didn’t work. No explanations, no development, a lacklustre “romance” at best, this wasn’t satisfying. At all.

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Hearts and Minds by Marie Treanor

Hearts and Minds (The Gifted, #2)Hearts and Minds by Marie Treanor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It is no secret that I really like Marie Treanor’s heroes. They are just perfect in every way.

At the beginning of Hearts and Minds I was quite taken with Nikolai (no surprise here, who wouldn’t be), but was slightly shocked that in the course of the book his general set up reminded me of someone else. Not so much his personality per se, his looks or behaviour, but rather how he was presented. Being a “gifted” very powerful healer? Being considered super dangerous? Being feared by a lot of his own people? The heroine being the light of his dark world? Doesn’t this ring a bell? This is Gregori from Dark Magic all over!

Thank God these are the only aspects that are similar; if Nikolai had been the same condescending know-it-all as Gregori with his annoying “my petite” habit (a habit he shares with all his Carpathian brothers) I would have tossed the book into a corner. But no, Nikolai is just right. Badass enough, hot enough, lovely enough – a perfect mix. Not surprisingly, Jen, the heroine, was equally satisfying. Marie Treanor’s heroines never seem to have the oh so popular stupid tendencies to misunderstand and draw idiotic conclusions out of nowhere.
The storyline was quite good, with lots of political dissidents, mean dictators, dubious oppostion leaders, bombs, narrow escapes with screeching tyres, the whole works. Throw in a few uncanny gifts, parapsychological researchers and a pissed off/helpless guardian and you get a super entertaining book.

Sadly, again, I have to comment on the cover art. Wow, the hair on that guy has to be one of the worst Photoshop jobs ever. Not good!

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Highland Sorcerer by Clover Autrey

Highland Sorcerer (Highland Sorcery, #1)Highland Sorcerer by Clover Autrey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

OK, next time I really must not forget to have a look at the heat index of books. I had automatically assumed there would be at least some love scenes, but no. Towards the end when there were only about 30 pages left and finally H and h were together again after an exciting rescue mission, I figured now would be a good time – and was disappointed. They had such a good connection, and a love scene would have just been the icing on the cake. I’m sure Clover Autrey would have done a brilliant job, too. Then again, how can there be a love scene when Col has been dragged into a time rift, Shaw has been abducted by Aldreth and Edeen is in a sort of coma? At least there is good reason for not having sex there and then.

Anyway, once I got over that, I was quite pleased with this story. It was a free book from All Romance and turned out to be 130 pages on my Sony, not too shabby. The plot was quite good, evil witch trying to take over the world with the help of a powerful sorcerer who would not have any of it. A spunky healer who stops at nothing to help her (future) lover. Perfect! Time travel, magic, Highlands, very nice. Thank God the oh so popular Scottish accent was kept to a minimum.

The story ended with a huge cliffhanger and will be continued with “The Vampire and the Highland Empath” (what a title!), which has a higher heat index. Just saying. However, reading the synopsis of the following titles I am not drawn to them. Shaw’s storyline featuring monsters that ate humankind to extinction (?) doesn’t do it for me, I am afraid.

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Smoke and Mirrors by Marie Treanor

Smoke and Mirrors (The Gifted, #1)Smoke and Mirrors by Marie Treanor
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Marie Treanor has a knack for creating heros I am smitten with. Drago from Gothic Dragon was the cream of the crop, but Rodion Kosar comes a close second (I keep thinking of Keyser Soze – somehow name and character remind me of him). The story was a bit too much action for me, but I did even the action parts quite a bit.

There is great chemistry between Rodion and Nell, but I had a few misgivings about the fact that throughout the book he was always going on in his head about there could not be a commitment. In the end there was one without anything having changed. From the start it was clear that either the mission would either fail or be successful, so what kept him from thinking that, if successful, he and Nell could not stay together? He could have easily said “Listen, if we get out of here alive and kicking, it’s a deal. If we fail, we (or I) will be dead anyway.” That was unnecessary tension, because it made no sense to me.

Nevertheless, I loved the couple together, as well as the secondary characters. The second book in this series (and obviously, so far, the last), Hearts and minds, is about Nikolai, which does not surprise me. He plays only a very minor part in the first book, but I can see some great potential here. Nell describes him as a “lecherous Jesus”, which was a misconception on her part, but gave a good visual description. Looking forward to it.

I don’t know who did the cover art for the two books, but I didn’t think it was fitting. The guy on Smoke and Mirrors looks nothing like I picture Rodion, he is way too soft looking. Fiery eyes don’t make him a badass, but I suppose one must be grateful that at least he is blond. And what about the stupid cloak? This is not a 19th century vampire story. Sometimes those cover artists don’t even seem to have read the descriptions. But, of course, that’s only me. If the cover guy floats your boat, even better.

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The Beast by Alianne Donnelly

The Beast (The Beast, #2)The Beast by Alianne Donnelly
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a great twist on the common Beauty & the Beast. This is sort of an inverted werewolf story, just that it’s not a werewolf but some unspecified beast. On three days a month the nice and friendly beast turns into a human who is a real monster, just without the claws.

Of course, you come to quite like the monster pretty quickly, even though he is a bit mean at first, but that is only defense machanism, isn’t it? Plus, I would be pissed off as well if they chained me to the wall on the few days a month I could actually go out and party like I used to before I got cursed.

From what I read Bastien must have been a right bastard before the curse, but I can’t see much of that here. I suppose 300 years of being cursed beats it out of you.

Anyway, this is a really good and entertaining read. And it is free to boot (available on Smashwords). I recommend it to everybody who likes a beauty and the beast theme, tortured heroes and fairy tales. The only problem I have with it is that is too short. Way too short!

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Let the right one in by John Ajvide Lindqvist

Cover Let the right one in by John Ajvide Lindqvist

Not your ordinary vampire romance

In a nutshell:

Short synopsis: Oskar meets a strange girl in his apartment complex. At the same time strange murders take place in his suburb of Stockholm.

Language I read the book in: English. Translated from Swedish by Ebba Segerberg

Did I like it? Yes. A lot.

For people who: love vampires, but not the schmaltzy smooching, don’t mind a little gore.  

My thoughts: 

When I started reading I vaguely knew what was coming as John has read the book and watched the two movies and had told me a little about it. But I was not prepared for this wonderful coming of age story, combined with gore, vampires, great side characters and an overall great atmosphere. Every person in this book has a distinctive personality and the writer took his time to develop each of them. We get to know the story from various points of view and this worked very well – even though I normally don’t enjoy character jumping too much. Apart from a few people, everybody was really likeable – which is quite an achievement considering the atmosphere in this book is dark, dreary, violent and not a happy one. Everybody has problems, everybody is fighting, and it still is an uplifting story!

What I particularly liked was that a lot of the side characters had facets that you normally don’t find in books. A glue sniffing boy with a problematic background has a great sense of humour (I really felt for Tommy in many ways. Not only does he have to spend the night with Hakan in a dark cellar, he also has to put up with insufferable Staffan, which is only slightly less unsettling). Drunken bums are very well educated, literate people (how many people you know can tell that the corresponding cat to Thisbe should be named Pyramus?). I loved them all.

The vampire angle was done really well, gave vampires a bit of a new spin and was quite exciting to read about, even though I found a few situations quite disconcerting and not for the faint of heart. But not the nightmare inducing kind either, at least not for me.

I do have a couple of complaints though. The end was disappointing. The conclusion of the book was done way too quickly. After writing five hundred odd pages and after developing the relationship between Oskar and Eli slowly and in depth, the author creates an end of one page That is unacceptable. It is cut off from the previous chapter, like a time lapse where some important things were forgotten to be told. I prefer stories to fade out slowly instead of coming to an unexpected halt.

Second I feel cheated. I battled my way through a lot of unsavoury scenes all the while hoping for Johnny and his mates to get their comeuppance and then when they finally do I don’t get to savour every detail, but have to read it in a witness report the length of a couple of paragraphs! Sorry, but this just does not do it! I was deprived of my satisfaction and I did not like that.

Other than that, this was a pleasure to read. Now I must get the short story “Let the old dreams die” to find out what happened next. I am glad the author wrote it because during reading I got this nagging thought that maybe Eli is just having Oskar around as the new caretaker, and I need to know that this is not so. 

Product info and buy link :

Title Let the right one in
Author John Ajvide Lindqvist
Publisher Quercus Publishing
ISBN 9781847248480
I got this book from we already had it lying around
Buy link Buy Let the right one in

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Have you read this book? What did you think of it? I would love to hear other opinions.


B.P.R.D. Being Human by Mike Mignola and others

No, I still am not reading graphic novels. This is another review by John.

being_human Blurb:

Mike Mignola”s strangest heroes, in their earliest adventures! In terrifying tales of witchcraft and the undead, Abe Sapien, Roger, Liz Sherman, and Johann Kraus learn the ropes as agents of the Bureau For Paranormal Research and Defense! Abe reels with the guilt of surviving a mission that killed more experienced agents, Roger goes on his first adventure with Hellboy, Liz tells the story of how she killed her family, and Johann Kraus dies!




In a nutshell:

John read it in: English

He liked it:   Yes     

For people who like: graphic novels for mature readers, tales of the supernatural, Hellboy

John’s thoughts: 

This is another welcome anthology of short stories featuring the characters of the B.P.R.D. The collection consists of three longish strips and one very short one.

We have encountered references to Liz Sherman’s past, specifically her unintentional killing of her family, and to Johann Krause’s unfortunate demise during the Ghengdhou disaster previously over the period the B.P.R.D. stories have been published, but both were not dealt with in any great detail, and there were blanks in the narrative. This book seeks to fill in those gaps and does so relatively well.

The Liz Sherman story, whilst interesting, is possibly the weakest of these  stories in that we see how the terrible tragedy happened, but as the event unfolds it turns out there’s not actually that much to it at all, and the accidental burning of her family does not play the central role in the story that one expects.

Also there does seem to be a lack of emotion at the centre of the story as it is related, with the central harrowing event not having any deep emotional resonance even with the characters. In fact the episode reads more as a coming of age story than as something which mars her life. The main event here is how she and Bruttenholm deal with the haunting of a local community, and is standard B.P.R.D. fayre. This is a world in which magic and witchcraft exist and witches on the whole are a bad lot. The witch theme is often revisited and this is no different as  we encounter a witch haunting a local priest in the story.  Still, although I feel the key event in Liz’s life perhaps could have been dealt with better on the whole it is well written and enjoyable.

The Johann Krause story for me was much better than that featuring Liz Sherman. I feel this story could only have been written now with the character of Krause having been fully developed over the series. The villain of the piece is interesting, and the story emphasises the determination of Krause supporting the character’s arc quite well. His reasoning for donning the survival suit are both believable and unexpected. The end frame of this piece is a brilliant image that brought to mind the iconic image of the Priest in the Exorcist. The composition of that end frame is quite superb and hints at the outcome between Krause and the villain more clearly than a 5 page story. Absolutely wonderful.

The shortest piece in the anthology –  ‘Casualties’ –  is a sort of throwaway story, only a few  pages long but somehow very satisfying. For me this underlines the title of the anthology ‘Being Human’. The characters are stating the obvious but it has a nice emotional heart at it’s centre. I always enjoy these stories where we are given glimpses of the characters questioning their actions and reasoning it out. These always build on the human element, and enrich the characterisation, and although short, these type of stories are often amongst the most enjoyable.

The last strip features Roger the Homonculus who was killed earlier in the series. I like this aspect of the B.P.R.D. where the reader can revisit characters who have left the B.P.R.D. universe, often tragically. We encounter Professor Bruttenholm in the Liz Sherman story as well of course. I like the way there is no reset button on the death of a major character, it is a breath of fresh air amongst comic books where the reset button is pressed way too often. Usually we find these characters being revisited in their new stories earlier in their timeline way before the events that led to their demise come about. This is the case in this story featuring Roger and Hellboy. Roger always came across as a reluctant hero, and this aspect of the character is underlined here once more. The only problems I have with these sort of stories are the outcome and the fact that there is no consequences for the actions of a character, as if nothing takes place in the real world. Well, this is the Universe of Hellboy so I suppose this is to be expected.

This is a tale of revenge  where a practitioner of Voudoun has come to exact a terrible price for the misdeeds of others. It left me with a bit of a nasty aftertaste. Of course denouements in comics are often violent so I shouldn’t be surprised, endings are often throwaway as well with things quickly resolved. I was personally sympathetic to the antagonist and I feel the point of the story, which was somehow to help Roger grow and appear human, although he isn’t, could have been handled a bit better. Sometimes it is hard to see the reasoning behind how these stories develop – probably it’s a sign of the times – but not in a good way.

In the collection overall the writing is a bit of a mixed bag, the artwork is immaculate, of course, with some very beautiful page compositions. For a long time fan of the B.P.R.D. the anthology is a pleasant interlude between the developing major arc. Although I have some minor reservations with one or two of the stories, still, it  is certainly the case that the Universe of the B.P.R.D. and Hellboy remains the most detailed and interesting in the comics milieu at the moment, and I would highly recommend this book to anyone who likes comics aimed at the mature market.

Product info and buy link :

Title B.P.R.D Being Human
Author Mike Mignola, John Arcudi, Scott Allie, Richard Corben, Ben Stenbeck,Karl Moline, Guy Davis, Andy Owens
Publisher Dark Horse Comics
ISBN 9781595827562
I got this book from Netgalley
Buy link Buy B.P.R.D.: Being Human
More info All B.P.R.D. products at Dark Horse Comics


Have you read this book? What did you think of it? John would love to hear other opinions.


Hellboy:House of the living dead by Mike Mignola & Richard Corben

And now for something completely different. As announced some time ago I have procured a reluctant enthusiastic  guest reviewer. John is an avid comic reader (he does read other stuff as well, don’t worry) and his review of “Hellboy: House of the living dead” is his first post here. I am amazed at the shortness of his review actually, normally he is pretty long-winded and once he starts talking he never shuts up. I am sure he will find to his usual lengthy self soon enough.

hellboy_1 Blurb:

Devastated over the loss of his luchador comrade to vampires, Hellboy lingers in Mexican bars until he’s invited to participate in the ultimate wrestling match with a vicious Frankenstein monster!






In a nutshell:

John read it in: English

He liked it:     Yes     

For people who like: Hellboy, supernatural stories with unusual twists and turns

John’s thoughts: 

This is a follow on to a recent story in ‘Hellboy: The bride of Hell and Others’. The short story was titled ‘Hellboy in Mexico or A Drunken Blur’ and was one of the best in that Hellboy collection. Mike Mignola mentioned that there was at least one other Mexican wrestler story to be released so I kept my eye open.

It does at a cursory glance look like Mike Mignola  has a thing about Mexican wrestlers, probably not really an obsession but maybe the start of one. For which I am thankful. This is a really good addition to the Hellboy collections. The story is superb, and again somewhat ambiguous. I like the twist at the end. The Hellboy universe is full of monsters but it is also full of mad doctors, mad being the operative word, I like it. I read an early review copy of this book but I will definitely be buying it for my collection when it is on general release. This will be a well thumbed book.

A word about the art. Richard Corben is a marvelous artist and his very idiosyncratic style is perfectly suited to this book. Those stories Richard Corben illustrates I am always drawn to. His characters are grotesques, but grotesques infused with life, the images just leap from the page, full of action and a style that is extremely appealing. I hope to see more Hellboys drawn by Mr Corben. All things considered this graphic novel is definitely up there with the best of the Hellboy series and I highly recommend it.

Product info and buy link :

Title Hellboy: House of the living dead
Author Mike Mignola & Richard Corben
Publisher Dark Horse Comics
ISBN 978-1-59582-757-9
I got this book from Netgalley
Buy link Buy Hellboy: House of the Living Dead
More info Other Hellboy products at Dark Horse Comics


Have you read this book? What did you think of it?


Fantasy cast for the BDB brothers

Through a twitter post by Suzanne Johnson I came across a fantasy cast for the Black Dagger Brotherhood brothers at Heroes & Heartbreakers. I haven’t talked about the BDB series for quite a long while, since I lost interest after book six as it was a big disappointment. The Insiders Guide was not meeting my expectations either, so I gave up reading it altogether.

Now some girls (I assume) have put together a list of possible actors for the various parts. Definitely nice to look at, however, once more I need to comment on V. That poor guy always seems to pull the short straw.

What on Earth did they think picking Owain Yeoman for V? Inside qualities are nice and good, but the image of him is a turn-off. Besides, doesn’t V have a goatee? I can’t imagine that guy having one, sorry. Unfortunately I have no alternative suggestion either. But I do know what he looks like when I see him. Owain Yeoman is not it.

Of the other guys the choices for Rhage and Butch make sense, but who does stand out of the crowd is Wentworth Miller. This is not the first time I have heard talk about him as a potential cast for Z and it is obvious that he should when you look at this picture of him in the German GQ. Perfect, or what?


Demon’s Dance by Evey Brett


Wanting to live freely as a human, half-incubus Tristan flees the Wardens. Broke and starving, he accepts Cory’s offer of a paid photo shoot, never dreaming he’d find a man with whom he could be aroused and erotic in his own body without having to submit to his demonic half.

Psychically sensitive Cory didn’t meet Tristan by accident; he volunteered to find the beautiful, exotic man for his patron. Cory had never before been able to touch a man without discomfort and soon can’t stop, but the hotter the sex gets, the more he can sense the darkness Tristan is trying desperately to escape.

Cory will do anything to keep Tristan safe, even if it means going against both his patron and the Wardens. Cory must learn how to soothe the demon—and to love the man within.

My thoughts: 

The blurb sounded nice enough and you don’t see too many incubi in books, even though you would think for erotica they would be the perfect protagonist.

However, the story did not live up to the blurb. No, that’s not true, the blurb doesn’t say anything that is not in the book, however, it leaves out a few things that made reading this book quite unsatisfying.

Let’s start at the beginning. Poor Tristan, half incubus, half human, is left in the care of a promising warden, assigned to him by Blanco. The warden turns out to be a sadistic jerk who uses and abuses Tristan continuously. Eventually Blanco comes to his aid (more about this later) and Tristan manages to get away from the “sheltered” life that he has known so far. He wants to live a normal life.

What bothered me?
(By the way, for better understanding I am saying “incubus/incubi, when in the book the term for the half incubus/half human beings is “cambion”).

  • Cory, a talented, yet unsuccessful photographer, catches Blanco red-handed while killing someone, but in order to be left alive himself he agrees to find Tristan for Blanco. What follows now is so strange and appalling that I really needed to wrap my head around it in order to talk about it in a way that makes sense.
  • Cory takes Tristan, who is homeless and totally screwed up, in and takes nude pictures of him. The nature of the pictures gets more explicit in the course of the book, mainly at the request of Blanco. Why Blanco requests nude pictures doesn’t interest Cory in the least.
  • Cory, I can only repeat it, an unsuccessful photographer, who explicitly says to Tristan that he does not have many models which is why he is so grateful for Tristan posing for him, has a large collection of nude or pornographic photos of various men. Where do all those men come from? Who are they?
  • Cory keeps a laptop Blanco has given him on at all times so that Blanco can watch what is going on in his apartment, this includes sex scenes. Naturally Tristan knows nothing about this.
  • Cory masturbates in front of his laptop for Blanco for a few hundred dollars. He reckons, since Blanco has already seen him sleep with Tristan, what the heck?
  • Blanco, who is supposed to protect the incubi, in fact he has sworn an oath to do so, let’s Tristan be abused for years and does not step in, because he was distracted by the suicide of his own protegé. He admits that he failed Tristan, but makes up for it later by killing the abusive warden. What about the oath that he broke? Shouldn’t there be repercussions?
  • The wardens, who are supposed to protect the incubi from society and their inner demon, don’t think anything of exploiting the incubi’s sex driven nature by pimping them, renting them out as escorts, dancers in clubs or porn stars.
  • Cory’s career is furthered by Blanco who organizes a show for him. As it turns out his work, mostly his pornographic work I might add, is being shown in the “ghetto” for the incubi. Almost all the guests at the show use his photographs for sexual stimulation there and then. Is this the sort of career an aspiring photographer who wants to get his name out is aiming to have? Shooting porn pictures for the sexually overactive?
  • Cory eventually decides to become a warden in order to help Tristan. He reaches that goal by being touched sexually by Blanco (who very much desires Cory) and in return by touching Blanco. How that would empower him to deal with an incubus and his demon is beyond me.

All in all, apart from Tristan, who was a character who was constantly pushed around by people who “wanted the best for him”, I thoroughly disliked the main characters. Cory sold himself out for his career. Blanco failed at his job, failed Tristan in a big way and has no valid excuse whatsoever. The way the wardens dealt with the incubi and their demons made no sense to me. The overall feel of the story was disturbing. I can’t recommend it in good conscience.


Title Demon’s Dance
Author Evey Brett
Publisher Carina Press
ISBN 9781426891090
Buy link Buy Demon’s Dance

Tooth and Nail by Mary Calmes


Nineteen-year-old Dylan Shaw is possibly the most beautiful thing Malic Sunden has ever seen. After Malic rescues Dylan from an attack, Dylan makes it very clear that he is more than interested, but Malic won’t even consider sleeping with Dylan because of his age. Malic is sure he’s not good enough for Dylan, who has his whole life ahead of him, and can’t conceive of burdening Dylan with his secrets.

But the darkness in Malic’s life won’t be denied, and soon Dylan is drawn into the dangerous paranormal world that is Malic’s reality. Malic fights tooth and nail to push Dylan away, to keep him safe… no matter that Dylan is the key to Malic’s strength and the only hope for his future.

My thoughts: 

This is book two in the Warder series and we already know Malic from the first book His hearth. There he is introduced as a loner with a tense relationship with Ryan. He seems to be the only warder left without a hearth, so now it is his turn.

I found the story was quite different from the first one. Where the first one solely focuses on the relationship between Ryan and Julian, here Malic is constantly out fighting and, as a consequence, getting into one trouble or other from which his friends have to rescue him. That Dylan is always there somehow and won’t be driven away is somewhat a side product. Malic wants him, but then again doesn’t, and can’t make up his mind what to do with him. I found this a bit over the top. For a notorious bad boy he was decidedly too good (aren’t they often?) and just couldn’t bring himself to get together with Dylan for fear of hurting him. I kept thinking, for Christ’s sake, now, go already!

Other than that it was an interesting sequel as it gave more insight into the world, how the guys fight, what other creatures are out there etc. And Malic is quite delicious, which is always a good thing.

I am wondering, however, whether there will be another instalment. Two books is not very much, considering it is called a series, but it seems all the boys are taken, so who is left? Unless, maybe, more and other beings come into play. We will see, I suppose.

Title Tooth and Nail
Author Mary Calmes
Publisher Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 978-1-61581-692-7
Buy link Buy Tooth and Nail

His Hearth by Mary Calmes


Julian Nash should be excited: he’s just earned a huge promotion at work and is going out to celebrate. But his happiness fades when he discovers his date cheating on him an hour before. Suddenly alone when everyone knows he’s supposed to have a plus one, Julian is set for a long night until longtime acquaintance Ryan Dean bails him out of the embarrassing situation. During dinner, they discover they have more than just friendship between them: there is mutual admiration and heated attraction. But getting to know Ryan better—and finding a place in his life—will bring Julian frightening surprises and paranormal danger he never expected or dreamed existed.

My thoughts: 

I had somehow missed the “paranormal danger” part when reading the blurb. So after about one third of the book I was wondering what the rest of it will contain. There didn’t seem to be any problems to overcome between Ryan and Julian, there was great chemistry, no misunderstandings etc. etc. So I had another look at the blurb and noticed there must be something else waiting.

So, basically the first half of the story is a romance without anything extraordinary to happen. However, all of a sudden, a rather upsetting encounter takes place in Julian’s kitchen that changes the scenario quite a bit. He and Ryan go from run of the mill contemporary couple to rather intense and different.

There is not much of a side plot apart from the romance. It is rather short and a quick read. I enjoyed reading it very much and am already in the middle of the second instalment of the “Warder Series”, “Tooth and Nail”.

Title His hearth
Author Mary Calmes
Publisher Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 978-1-61581-572-2
Buy link Buy His hearth

Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh


In a world that denies emotions, where the ruling Psy punish any sign of desire, Sascha Duncan must conceal the feelings that brand her as flawed. To reveal them would be to sentence herself to the horror of "rehabilitation"- the complete psychic erasure of everything she ever was….

Both human and animal, Lucas Hunter is a Changeling hungry for the very sensations the Psy disdain. After centuries of uneasy co-existence, these two races are now on the verge of war over the brutal murders of several Changeling women. Lucas is determined to find the Psy killer who butchered his packmate, and Sascha is his ticket into their closely guarded society. But he soon discovers that this ice-cold Psy is very capable of passion-and that the animal in him is fascinated by her. Caught between their conflicting worlds, Lucas and Sascha must remain bound to their identities-or sacrifice everything for a taste of darkest temptation…

My thoughts: 

So I finally jumped on the bandwagon and read Slave to Sensation. I have been very curious about this book, but always found the title quite unappealing. But I have read so much praise for it that I finally got it on my swap site and went for it.

Don’t let the title mislead you. Sascha is by no means a “slave to sensation”. She is an interesting character, since she has never known emotion and yet her ability is worth nothing without it. However, she is still her own person and does what she thinks is right. She is not ruled by her desire for sensation.

I was very impressed with the world building. The world of the Psy was well developed and explained and a good contrast to the world of the changelings. I always had a liking for unemotional characters and I loved the Psy and their ordered, tidy world. I also liked their counterparts, the changelings with their emotions flaring up and their structures where family or pack is everything.

Sascha and Lucas meet for business and how it went from there was nicely done. To me everything that happened made sense, the side characters were introduced well, not overwhelming the plot but enough to make me want to find out more about them, especially Dorian and Hawke.

With the ending and the solution to the problem that occupied Sascha for a long time – a solution, by the way, that made sense and was not something far fetched – Nalini Singh has opened a lot of possibilities for other stories between Psy and changelings. I can’t wait to read them.


Title Slave to Sensation
Author Nalini Singh
Publisher Berkley
ISBN 978-0425212868
Buy link Buy Slave to Sensation

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater



For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf–her wolf–is a chilling presence she can’t seem to live without. Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human . . . until the cold makes him shift back again.

Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It’s her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human–or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever.


My thoughts: 

Even though I am not into YA in general I read Shiver along with Carin because I have heard a lot of good things about it. I like the "lovers who can’t stay together due to circumstances" topic, so I was not disappointed with the general idea of the story.
Grace and Sam have been in love for what seems like forever, even though they didn’t know each other in person. Very romantic. I liked the uncomplicated plot without many twists and turns which made for a quick and pleasant read, I suppose this is quite typical of a YA story where there are not obstacles at every corner (and given the situation there could have been A LOT of them).

I already said in my update #1 of the readalong that I didn’t get the Fahrenheit degrees at all, which supposedly took some of the building tension away. In retrospect I am pretty sure knowing my way around Fahrenheit wouldn’t have made a big difference. OK, it got colder and change was coming closer – I got that without the exact temperature info, especially since the indicators of when Sam would change were more than unreliable anyway.
It seemed the wolves changed at random, yes, based on the seasons, but nobody knew exactly when they would change, when they would change back, when they would stay a wolf for good etc. I found this quite confusing. It wasn’t as if with the temperature reaching a certain point the change would invariably happen, so I am not sure what the temperature was supposed to tell us exactly.

The fact that Grace’s parents were totally oblivious to the fact that Sam was practically living in their house was strange to say the least. OK, they left Grace pretty much to her own devices but how can parents be so clueless and uninterested? This could have been one source of conflict that was not fully explored here. Grace deals with it in her head, but never confronts her parents.

I have heard from someone that a few people have complained about Grace having no backbone. I really have no idea where those people are coming from. I liked her. She was matter-of-fact, independent, reliable and quite practical when it came to helping Sam out in tricky situations or when she was with Jack and had to think of a way to get help for herself.

Another thing I had also read somewhere before was that Sam was constantly writing song lyrics reflecting his emotions. That sounded rather interesting, but somehow I didn’t particularly care for them. The choice of poetry that Sam read to Grace was equally unsatisfactory to me. I love poetry but Rainer Maria Rilke wouldn’t have been my first choice if I wanted to introduce someone to either poetry or German.

One side character I particularly liked was Isabel, Jack’s sister. Even though at first she is the condescending, rich and spoilt girl with her little dog in her purse, she later turns out to be helpful and sincere. Her snappy way and bitchy attitude could not hide the fact that she is a good person after all. From what I read she will be also a major character in "Linger", the sequel to "Shiver", and I am really looking forward to reading more about her.

I’m not sure whether I liked the ending. First of all, the whole cure theory and the execution of administering it was more than dubious. Was it realistic how Isabel got the blood? Was it realistic how they got them all to the hospital and out again? That all sounded very half-baked and it was happening too fast.

The re-unification of Grace and Sam was, well, nice, but I was missing some sort of explanation as to what happened to him after he ran away. Grace assumed he was dead, and then, all of a sudden, he returns and that’s it? That was anticlimatic. I can only hope that "Linger" will pick up exactly at this point and will deliver what I have been missing. 


Title Shiver
Author Maggie Stiefvater
Publisher Scholastic
ISBN 978-0545123273
Buy link Buy Shiver


Want to read what others think about this book?

Read Carin’s review of Shiver. Her thoughts went along a totally different line.

Here is Leeswammes review of it.

And this is what Iris has to say about it.  

Chachic’s thoughts on it.  


Soulless by Gail Carriger


Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations. First, she has no soul. Second, she’s a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.
Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire — and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate.
With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London’s high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?

My thoughts: 

This is the first book I read for my Steampunk challenge. Everybody talks about the Parasol Protectorate series, of which this is the first book with Changeless and Blameless to follow. Two more sequels, Heartless and Timeless, will be released in the next two years.

Since this is the first steampunk book I have ever read (except a m/m novella which I don’t count here) I have no idea how to rate it as far as the steampunk factor is concerned. It is set in an alternative Victorian London; werewolves, vampires, ghosts and other supernatural beings have come out years before and are now an official, if not 100% popular, part of society. The plot revolves around mysterious appearances and disappearances of supernatural beings and it is up to Alexia and Lord Maccon to detect what is going on (if only by accident and with the help of a few delectable dandies).

Alexia is a preternatural, the only one known in fact, who can neutralize supernatural powers merely through touch. I found this an interesting twist. In no paranormal story I have read so far did I come across anybody who could negate the supernatural at all, let alone this easily. Her interactions with her paramour-to-be were delightful. Both thoroughly dislike each other – or so they think – and that made for some very agreeable banter.

The other main characters are all fleshed out and, if not likeable, at least believable. The typical werewolf – vampire differences are in place. The vampires are refined to foppish, the werewolves down-to-earth to rough and boisterous. I absolutely loved Lord Akeldama and his drones. I hope I will see more of them in the future.

One thing I could have done without were the descriptions of the experiments in the club. I hate that sort of thing and I would have known that those scientists were rather crazy, fanatical and dangerous without reading all that. So I skipped some of it, even though I am sure I missed out on some great machinery ideas that way.

The idea to lock Alexia into the cell with the biggest werewolf gave a chance to throw in a lovely scene between her and Lord Maccon. Strange how people in love are inclined to kiss and pet even in the worst circumstances. But then, I suppose they were locked in and could only wait. So what better pastime than to make out?

I very much enjoyed reading Soulless and will definitely continue with that series. If you like the paranormal, romance (not too explicit), an element of humour and a lot of entertainment, get it!

On Gail Carriger’s website you will find a page about Alexia’s London, along with sketches of characters and outfits, deleted scenes and more. A nice addition to the reading experience.

Title Soulless
Author Gail Carriger
Publisher Orbit Books
ISBN 978-0316056632
Buy link Buy Soulless

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? I would love to hear other opinions.


Heather at Books and Quilts 


Perilous Partnership by Ariel Tachna


A year after the end of the war that brought them together, Raymond Payet and Jean Bellaiche have found a balance in their relationship: Jean drinks only Raymond’s blood; Raymond sleeps only in Jean’s bed. The demands of their public roles as president of l’Association Nationale de Sorcellerie and chef de la Cour of the Parisian vampires keep them busy dealing with fallout from the war and the alliance, particularly the not-always-successful partnerships between vampires and wizards.

The foundation of an institute to research and educate wizards and vampires about the implications of the partnership bonds only adds to those responsibilities. When political factions, both vampire and mortal, oppose their leaders’ decisions, the stress begins to affect Raymond and Jean’s deepening relationship. And when political opposition turns to vandalism and then to violence, they’ll have to find a way to reconcile their personal and professional lives before external and internal forces pull them apart.

My thoughts: 

If you liked the Partnership in Blood series as much as I did you will enjoy this spin-off. However, it is much different from the previous four books. Why?

It mainly concentrates on one couple, Jean and Raymond, instead of telling the stories of various couples. We meet Orlando and Alain, Sebastien and Thierry and others, but the main focus is on one couple. All the others are only side characters about whose lives we learn only very little if anything.

The story is less energetic. The war is over and there is no immediate danger to fight against. Therefore the pace is slightly slower until some occurrences force everybody to get out of their happy living routine and try to find out what is going on. There are some obstacles to overcome in regards to their plans with the institute, but they are not that big an issue.

The main couple is an established one. Jean and Raymond have been living together for some time and now they have to deal with how to shape their future together. There is no new love interest to pursue, no discovering the personality of someone new. Some anxiety, yes, but not the usual “I’m falling in love, does he love me back” kind.

Once I got my mind wrapped around all this, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this “sequel”. And it is a sequel as well as a spin-off. It picks up after the war with Raymond being the president of l’ANS and a new institute to be opened to research the partnerships in more depth. At the same time it is supposed to educate wizards and vampires on how partnerships work and help them to  find partners if they wish.

I had a problem with that education. It is a good idea to tell people beforehand what they are getting into, however, the instructors are not as open as I would have wished them to be. L’ANS is accused at some point of pandering, which is, of course, ridiculous. However, after those accusations Thierry points out that all partnerships (maybe with the exception of Marcel and M. Lombard, but they are a different league) turned sexual at one point, regardless of the previous preferences of the persons involved. Wouldn’t that be a very important aspect that needs addressing in those educational classes? It seems that all they tell the “students”, though, is that people can decide if they want to form a partnership before an actual blood exchange by checking if they are compatible in other ways. They say that they are in control over how the partnership develops. Nobody ever mentions that once blood is exchanged chances are you will have a sexual relationship. Even Jude and Adele who were NOT compatible in any way and hated each other’s guts had a sexual relationship, if you want to call it that.

At one point Raymond came over as the old prejudiced guy I thought he had shed. When Jean offers the Aveu de Sang his reaction was way over the top. He could have said, he will have to think about it instead of answering in such a dismissive way. Did Orlando treat Alain like cattle? I found this comparison with the branding quite unfair and harsh. It would have befitted a researcher of Raymond’s calibre to stop and think and maybe get an opinion of someone who knows before declining in such a rude manner. Jean must have considerable thick skin to not walk out the door for good after such a rejection.

Apart from those minor things it was a great continuation of the series which I liked a lot. I don’t know whether there is anything more planned, but the ending does not immediately suggest another spin-off or sequel. I really would have liked to see Adele and Jude come together. But that would have probably been a task to difficult even for Ariel herself :).

For readers who liked the Partnership in blood series, this is a must read. To all newcomers I recommend to read the previous four books first, otherwise you won’t get much fun out of this one.

Title Perilous Partnership
Author Ariel Tachna
Publisher Dreamspinner Press


Buy link Buy Perilous Partnership

Upcoming Partnership in Blood spin-off

I have to admit that I never have a look at upcoming releases in any shop, so I totally missed the fact that Ariel Tachna is going to release a spin-off of the Partnership in Blood series in October. How exciting!

The book is called “Perilous Partnership” and continues the story of Jean and Raymond. When I started reading the series I didn’t think I would ever say that, but Raymond has really grown on me and now I love him to pieces.

I am so looking forward to reading that. The blurb promises some serious trouble, so I expect an exciting read once more.


Extinction by Carol Lynne


Professor of Environmental Science/Wildlife studies at UNLV, Jack McBain has spent his adult life trying to track a legend overheard during his youth. Born and raised in the Canadian Province of Newfoundland, Jack remembers his grandparents telling stories of a race of people eradicated by European settlers in 1829. According to the legend, the Beothuk people didn’t die out as first thought, but were transformed into wolf shifters.

When Newfoundland wolves began to appear in great numbers, the European settlers began killing them under the guise of population control. In 1910, the last of the Newfoundland wolves was shot, making them one of the few extinct species of wolves in the world.

Following spotty leads, Jack begins to track what he believes are Beothuk/Newfoundland shifter wolves. His search leads him to the Lake Mead National Recreational Area outside of Las Vegas. There, on Spirit Mountain, he finally comes face to face with not only the shifter he’s been looking for, but the man of his dreams he didn’t know he needed.

My thoughts: 

I only know Carol Lynne’s writing from the two Cattle Valley books that I read recently and thought I’d try something different by her. And, wow, different this was. I don’t know whether it was for the better or worse, though.

But first let me say something about Resplendence Publishing’s so called “Heat Levels”. They have 5 heat levels that go from “heat behind closed doors” (Diamond) to “intense, hotter than hot” (Fire Opal). “Extinction” is rated that last level. However, it seems ALL same sex romance books are in that category, obviously because of the contents being offensive to some (my assumption, they don’t say that explicitly). So, if you buy a m/m romance at their shop your book will automatically be rated “Fire Opal”. I didn’t know exactly whether this means the heat is “hotter than hot” or whether it is simply in that category because of the potentially offensive contents (unless of course ALL m/m books are that heated anyway).

Let me get this straight, I don’t mind a heat level up to the roof, but if about 85% of the book are sex scenes I tend to get a bit bored. This is what happened here, I actually found myself skipping over sex scenes desperately trying to find the next scene with other content.

For all intents and purposes the plot was interesting and could certainly have been elaborated on. Unfortunately Carol Lynne decided to keep explanations to a minimum, just barely enough so you could understand what was going on, and filled the rest of the story with sex.

I really liked the first few pages, but then it quickly turned around to being monotonous.  I never even felt a real connection between Jack and Toby. The whole story. even though the idea is a good one, was –in my eyes- badly executed.

Title Extinction
Author Carol Lynne
Publisher Resplendence Publishing
ISBN 9781607350408
Buy link Buy Extinction

Gods behaving badly by Marie Phillips



Being a Greek god is not all it once was. Yes, the twelve gods of Olympus are alive and well in the twenty-first century, but they are crammed together in a London townhouse-and none too happy about it. And they’ve had to get day jobs: Artemis as a dog-walker, Apollo as a TV psychic, Aphrodite as a phone sex operator, Dionysus as a DJ.
Even more disturbingly, their powers are waning, and even turning mortals into trees – a favorite pastime of Apollo’s – is sapping their vital reserves of strength.
Soon, what begins as a minor squabble between Aphrodite and Apollo escalates into an epic battle of wills. Two perplexed humans, Alice and Neil, who are caught in the crossfire, must fear not only for their own lives, but for the survival of humankind. Nothing less than a true act of heroism is needed-but can these two decidedly ordinary people replicate the feats of the mythical heroes and save the world?


My thoughts: 

When I read the blurb I found the idea that the Greek Gods are living in contemporary London trying to find back to their original splendour highly original. Unfortunately my husband burst my bubble when he told me callously that Tom Holt had a similar idea a long time ago, only it’s not a ramshackle building in Hampstead Heath but the Sunnyvoyde Residential Home for Retired Deities (Odds and Gods).

This didn’t dampen my spirit though. I still find the idea fascinating, especially since I know a bit about Greek mythology and found the characterizations of the various Gods extremely amusing and fitting.

Apollo who has to try to make a living as an oracle on a trashy TV show with elderly ladies his only audience, Aphrodite making a little money on the side working on a phone sex line, Dionysos owning a seedy club where he plays the DJ and sells his delicious wine to the hip youngsters, the Gods constantly bickering, it was all too funny. There are so many small, delightful ideas in the story that I found it very entertaining and hilarious.

One point that I found slightly strange was that I couldn’t relate to the romantic couple at all, in fact, I thoroughly disliked them both.  For me they stayed faceless and inconspicuous. I wasn’t fond of Alice, an unobtrusive girl with a university degree who works as a cleaner because she likes cleaning (I definitely cannot relate to that) and neither did I find Neil attractive. Not because he didn’t look like the typical romantic hero, but because he just didn’t stand out for me in any way at all. The most remarkable thing about those two was that they were totally unremarkable. I understand that they were meant to be that way, but even unremarkable people have some depth, hidden secrets and whatnot and those two just didn’t, at least I never noticed. Yeah, ok, they loved each other and Neil was willing to go to the underworld for Alice, but I have seen better things than that. Or, if those things were not really better, they were pulled off with more panache. Neil was just too boring.  And so was Alice.

I found the last part of the story was kind of slow and anti-climatic. The solution to the Gods’ problem was so obvious and so easily achieved that it was sort of unbelievable.

As for the title, I don’t agree with it. The Gods don’t behave badly at all, at least not more than you would expect them to. They just behave like the ordinary Greek God that you know and like. If their behaviour is supposed to be bad they definitely have to kick it up a notch or two.

Summary (courtesy of Carin B. who expressed my feelings better than I did): I enjoyed it, but felt kind of blah at the end. Thanks Carin for helping me out! 

Title Gods Behaving Badly
Author Marie Phillips
Publisher Little, Brown and Company
ISBN 0316067628
Buy link Gods Behaving Badly