Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Monthly Reads - November 2009

One more month to the year. Really, how time flies!!

This month was not bad, I was able to read about 15 books. I say about, because one of them was a Harlequin and another, a novella. It's crazy how 3 more books on my read list makes me feel so much better, LOL. I just checked and last year, I read 207 books. I don't think I'll be able to repeat it again this year, but I shouldn't be too far. We'll find out quite soon I guess.

At the moment, I'm having quite a dilemma... I'm a romance reader... my favorite genre is contemporary romance... Yet lately, all I feel like reading is urban fantasy and fantasy... Even reading historical romance comes more easily to me. I sure hope it does not mean that I've burned out on romance T_T It'd be very, very sad. So yeah, lately, I have a nagging feeling and I worry. Stupid no?

Anyway, here is my list of reads for the month of December...

1) Greywalker by Kat Richardson: B-/B

I actually saw this book when it first came out in trade-size a few years back. At that time, I was not willing to pay for it, so I put it back on the shelf and kind of forgot about it. Till I visited Renee's blog.

Greywalker was okay. I felt the world building was missing something, especially since Harper was as clueless as readers, having just discovered her powers. I like Harper... she's strong, but not in a kick-ass way. The case was interesting also. However, you know this is a first book - lots of information dumped, characters introduced. The pacing was a bit slow and I had a hard time focusing on the book.

I have the two next books in my TBR pile. Renee says it gets better... but so far, I haven't had the urge to pick up the next book.

2) Blaze of Memory by Nalini Singh: B+

Review to come (I hope). Anyway, I liked this book. Enjoyed the H/H, although I don't know, I felt Dev's character was perhaps a wee inconsistent. Otherwise, really enjoyed the book... especially since I like self-sacrificing relationships :P

3) Kindred in Death by J.D. Robb: A-

4) England's Perfect Hero by Suzanne Enoch: B

5) The Duke by Gaelen Foley: B

I picked up this book while I was at Kristie's. I think this is her favorite Gaelen Foley. I can see why she liked it. The storyline is quite original/refreshing and unexpected. It definitively stands out.

Best part I would say was Robert Knight - the fact that he was so honorable. I liked the fact that he wasn't a rake and he took love very seriously. He was a bit hard-headed at the end though... Belinda was brave. Overall, quite an interesting story... although I felt the second half of the book was a bit draggy.

6) HaveMercy by Jaida Jones & Danielle Bennett: C

Another book that Renee enjoyed... However, this one didn't really work for me. I didn't mind the 4 1st person POVs, but I felt that the story was a bit boring. I definitively expected more action, but everything was more internal. The story simply didn't grab me...

My favorite narrator was Hal. I enjoyed his relationship with Royston... My only issue is I would have liked the authors to precise his age earlier... I mean, he was introduced as a young man and for some reason, I thought he was 15 or 16 years old ^_^; However, turns out he was 20... which is a bit difference when you're in a relationship with a 35 y.o. man.

7) Soulless by Gail Carringer: B

Cute little paranormal romance story. The world is interesting, a mix of Victorian era and steampunk. The author's take on vampires, werewolves and preternatural is quite refreshing. I enjoyed the H/H and will be seeking the second book.

8) Somebody Wonderful by Kate Rothwell: B

Picked this book up because Ames enjoyed it so much. I thought it was cute and different from most historical that I read. I liked Mike and Timmy's relationship and interactions. I also liked the fact that Mike could walk away from his corrupted job... However, there were parts that were a bit unbelievable... and the "intrigue," meh.

9) This Time For Keeps by Kathleen Kane: C

Hmmm, this book reminded me a lot of When There is Hope by Jane Goodger and Once in Every Life by Kristin Hannah. The plot is a bit the same, as in the heroine dies in modern time and is sent back in time for a second chance for life. I enjoyed When There is Hope and Once in Every Life a bit more... mainly because the heroines accepted their situation and adapted. In This Time For Keeps, Nellie was too stubborn for my tastes, she clung to her ways a bit too much... even though they wouldn't be accepted. Also, she was a bit too materialistic to my taste... and I didn't really believe her love for Seth :( The whole past lives stories were interesting though, but distracting to the main storyline.

10) Homicide in Hardcover by Kate Carlisle: C

Review to come.

11) Red-Headed Stepchild by Jaye Wells: B

Review to come.

12) Holding Out for a Hero by Helen Kay Dimon: B-

Picked this one up because of Rosie. I'm glad I did even though the book didn't wow me. I enjoyed Ms Dimon's writing. The story was definitively interesting and different. I liked that Ms Dimon took risks with the storyline. The problem though was Holding Out for a Hero was too short and therefore, I didn't believe in the love between Josh and Deana. One minute they hated each other, the next they lusted after each other and oh, they're in love with each other. Even if they were attracted to one another before, the changes were too fast... especially for two persons that didn't understand each other that well and didn't trust each other.

13) Under the Boss's Mistletoe by Jessica Hart: B-

A cute book that I picked up thanks to Wendy. I liked the fact that the book too place in modern England. That was a nice change :) The book is quite simple, but sweet and enjoyable. Hmm, I do wish there was more scene from Jake's POV, his thoughts on his relationship with Jake. The POV scenes were quite even till halfway... then, it shifted to Cassie. While I liked Cassie's character, I felt that she cared too much about what other people thought. Like when she was fantasizing that everyone would envy her job and stuff. I don't know, I felt that she was a bit superficial at those times.

14) Missing in Deah by J.D. Robb: B

This is the novella in the anthology The Lost. Since it's a novella, the story is mainly focused on the case, which was interesting. There was definitively lots of shades of gray in this book and it was interesting to see Eve deals with them. My only problem though is that it didn't feel very believable... The entire novella centers around a device... and I just don't get how it would work or accept the existence of something like that. If it wasn't for that device, I would have given the novella a higher grade... even think that a full-length book wouldn't be a bad idea.

15) King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner: A+

So there you have it, my month of November in review. Mostly Bs... I do think that my mood has something to do with my grading. Ah well. I also realized that I haven't reviewed much in the past month. I have been blogging... but not reviewing. Hopefully, this will improve this month :)


  1. Good list Nath. I'm glad you liked Somebody Wonderful. It was such a different story.

    I can understand your move into fantasy this month. A lot of romances I've read lately were getting on my nerves b/c the h/h weren't communicating. So yeah, it's good to switch things up anyway because variety is the spice of life. LOL

  2. Actually, *laughing* The Duke isn't my fave of this series - I thought it was OK. The ones I liked best were Lord of Fire (really didn't like Lord of Ice) Lady of Desire and One Night of Sin. The final one - His Wicked Kiss was a DNF and the last book of hers I've read - or tried to

  3. So glad you're reading, nath. It's a great list. :)

    I also get like that sometimes reading romance. I change to other genres for a while & return. It feels fresh again. :)

  4. You read a lot of books this last month that other bloggers recommended.

    Gosh, we're a bossy lot, aren't we? :)

  5. I wasn't thrilled with Singh's Branded by Fire so I'm hoping Blaze will click with me. I really like this series and am hoping Branded was just a blip.

    (Somebody Wonderful- I liked that rec by Ames too and have it on my tbr wishlist!)

  6. Ames - It was indeed :D Thank you for making me read it... cos on my own, I'm not sure I would have, because it was set in NY in the 1800s... ^_^;

    I don't know, I find there's not many original plots lately in romance. It's so frustrating when the conflicts and issues are always the same.

    But like I told you, I just hope I'm not burning out on romance ^_^;

    Kristie - Oups ^_^; However, I know that you mention The Duke somewhere on your blog...

    I bought a couple of Gaelen Foley last time I was at the UBS... but I didn't buy the twins' books. I don't know, wasn't interested in spy ^_^;

    And ouch, DNF for His Wicked Kiss :(

    Hilcia - Thanks Hils :D

    Well I usually will change for sub-genres you know. Switch up between contemp, historical and paranormal... but lately, I'm really into urban fantasy and fantasy. Ah well, January will be better for romance. Awaiting the new Robyn Carr :D

    Wendy - LOL, you are all so bossy! :) or perhaps, I'm just too easily influenced? :P

    It's just, I want to know why you found this book good... so really, my only solution is to read it, right? :)

    Zeek - Blaze of Memory is quite different from Branded by Fire, so I hope you'll enjoy this one :D

  7. Great list for the month! I debated getting the Helen Kay Dimon one - but maybe I will. She never wows me either but her books are normally cute and fun despite that.

  8. Omg, it is Dec! I switched my transportation pass from Nov to Dec but it didn't click til I saw all these posts re: Nov reads. Geez, I'm just so lost these days. I need a new job *sigh*

    What Hilcia said - I go through periods where I couldn't stand anything contemp or historical romance and could only read urban fantasy...and I was panicking that I lost my romance interest but then boom! I can only read romance and UF gives me a headache. Lol

  9. Tracy - Thanks Tracy :D

    If you want and if you can wait, I can send it to you (the Helen Kay Dimon) :)

    Tabitha - I know!!

    Awww, you've been that busy?!?

    I'm glad that you experience the same thing. That's a good sign for me :D

  10. Glad you tried the Harper Blaine book. I think that her books that get better as they go also because Greywalker was KR's first book and you can really see her writing improve a lot, and the Grey becomes less vague as the series progresses. Style-wise, I think that that they come closest to the Harry Dresden series!

    Sorry that HaveMercy didn't work as well for you! It's not as action-y as you'd think given the dragons, but yeah, I'm a sucker for all the internal drama.

    LOVED Soulless. It was such great fun!

    I've been the same way about reviewing Nath. If it weren't for the Challenges, I think I'd be down to 1 or 2 a month!

  11. Renee - That's good to know Renee :) I will get to them eventually, since I bought them... just not in a hurry for now.

    It's okay for HaveMercy :) At least I know it's not my style, so I won't be seeking the rest :) That's not a bad thing :)

    Soulless was definitively cute :) I'm looking forward to the next one :)