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This Monstrous Thing

A really satisfying read if you ask me, the way that it handles Frankenstein, blends everything together nicely. And also include the real author of Frankenstein in an interesting tale.

Set in a world of automatons, and definitely include a real life Frankenstein, Alasdair reviving his own brother and having a bigger secret to hide than just what is known. And also dealing when Olivier’s secret is revealed; and Alasdair needs to know who did it.

I really like this story for how it handles the plot, with the way Frankenstein was a form of retelling of Alasdair and Olivier’s story. Also what that reveals him to the world, forces them on the run and sets the whole plot into motion.

Also, including someone who is by his side the whole time until she married to be the person who wrote the book. Clever even, and that Mary preferred to be anonymous until she knew that it could stand on its own. And well, setting the whole plot into motion.

I think that this was driven by the characters very well, Mary’s inability to keep the truth and eventually lead to her writing a similar version of what Alasdair did which lead to Frankenstein. And Alasdair’s own guilt and secrets, as well as curiosity with clockwork.

Ad for Cleménce and Olivier, both are rather interesting although I do find that the person who drives the story is Alasdair and at the same time Mary.

The plot is simple and developed in ways I never really expected it to, pretty unpredictable but knowing this premise, it isn’t just a retelling, it could be a story behind Frankenstein which clears up all nicely at the end.

The ending was rather good to me, hopeful and open. Often a personal favourite of mine if you ask me what I think of this. So, do I recommend this? Well if you love Gothic retelling, and a touch of steampunk while you’re looking at it.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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Colorless

Once again, I am dropping a book. Nothing is making me enjoy this book, and I do think that it was enough of just sitting through it.

Although the premise and beginning did sound interesting, at least for a brief moment before it ends up boring. Even with so many perspectives, I feel as though I’m reading all the same person. And was there really such a need to change it so many times, I was as confused as to who was the actual protagonist. And neither did I even feel connected to one of them, the writing was really bland and normal. I feel as though I couldn’t even get into it at all. The beginning was pretty okay and I did hoped that it would be decent.

All I know is that there are magicians but where are they. I don’t really see them, nor does Annabelle become directly involved in them. Most importantly, when her line was being ended by them it was only when it was at 80% of the book. That sounds like poor pacing to me. So much of the book felt useless to me actually, since I was so incredibly bored while reading it. Not much happened, at least not much which I wanted and even expected from this book.

When my expectations aren’t met, I don’t see the need to give it time to let it settle with me. I’m out.

Rating: 1 out of 5

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Shadow Of The Raven

For once, I really like this work for the tale it tells. Although far from complete and it would take a lot more than that, but I really like the research the author puts into this. As well as the way that it was written, understandable and really enjoyable in the way it was written. The style basically can be summed up in one word: timeless.

I barely have any idea about the Vikings, and I really like how this was immersed into us, and well the transition smooth and easy for me to get into despite having very little idea about the time period.

As for the main character, Eardwulf(old English Names just aren’t my thing) is a really relatable character. As he slowly moved through the entire ordeal of being a thrall(a slave basically) and seeing more tragedies unfold before him, and eventually managing to find his way out.

And well, I really like this work for how it made it bite sized and to me it was one which I went deep and connected with Ulf(his eventual name but it’s just way easier to spell than above which I’m not too sure what the spelling is.)

Although there is some romance in this book during Ulf’s time as a thrall, and eventually it resolved by the end. Which I did like given that Freyis is kind and gentle, although not as interesting as a character however I did like it when she did try to pursue something and when her dreams were crushed she simply didn’t just accept it.

As for Morwenna, she is by far the best woman here. The other princess of Wessex doesn’t really stand out. But I do like Morwenna for when she became a concubine she just stayed there until she found her eldest son and even had another. I do really like her character and her strength, which translates to her decisions and actions.

As for the ending, well it will lead you somewhere and it will suggest something a bit more. I definitely look forward to where it heads and most definitely where it will go.

In my opinion should you consider reading this: yes.

I voluntarily requested a copy of this book on Netgalley.

Rating: 5 out of 5

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Gear Girl

I really fell in love with this book somehow. About Eleanor slowly finding out about herself, the way she chose to adjust to her life. For me, I was glad that it wasn’t some over the top debate about whether mechanical people were better.

Here was where a slow story happened, about acceptance, how lives should be saved. And also, what could someone do to save another. This story I think is representative of that very fact.

Eleanor’s character is slowly developed, from the moment she finds out what she is. To adjusting to her new life, and the way that it is done is absolutely perfect. When she started considering Agatha her mother, it was subtle yet it felt seamless.

As for the romance, it influences the ending. It influences Eleanor. Percy is ill, and I think whatever happens to him from there isn’t all too hard to figure out. And the way that ending was delivered, it was poignant and middle ground. Eleanor did something to save the person she loves, and she paid it. The ending was perfection in my mind.

Although I would expect her to instead decide to live on, or perhaps use another method. The author decided to give me one of the most painful, yet bittersweet endings. I think it is rather fitting, Eleanor did not ask to be revived. But instead, she chose to use it to save another instead of selfishly living on all because she loves him too much.

As for the inventor who saved, finally someone who isn’t a mad scientist. He may have been obsessed with having a child, as did Agatha who desperately wanted one. But he never really felt absolutely mad, a raving lunatic. I appreciate the way it went down a unique route instead of the one we always knew. And Agatha, she was like the kind of mother you would trust an orphan to. She accepted this compromise as long as it was okay, and definitely selflessly loved Eleanor.

I think that this is something rather different, it deviates from the norm. The ending is pretty much bittersweet and one that I doubt I would forget, although not completely perfect but I was immersed in it for the way it was different from everything I have ever read.

Would I recommend? Yes, I would. It had been such a long time since I have liked a book well enough to give it more than three stars.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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My Lady Jane

This was the right sort of hilarious, it made me laugh within fifty pages of the book and the rest of the time giggling to myself(like a bit of a lunatic, can’t help myself since I also talk a lot to myself). I guess a book that doesn’t take itself too seriously is right up my alley (now where can I reserve a copy of The Gentleman’s Guide To Vice And Virtue).

Well, instead of the religious divide we have in Tudor England during the region of Edward the Sixth, what we have instead is a divide between people who can turn into animals, and people who cannot. And that the cast is full of animal, we have a kestrel, a fox, a cat, a ferret and of course a horse(now I can’t stop laughing at the mention of one.)

This was just so enjoyable, and you know making me laugh. I read this with rarely any skimming, because I really didn’t want to miss a joke, since it made me laugh out loud for the first time with a book(which had never happened in the year and a half that I continuously read books). Let me just say, when these three authors come together to write a comedy, count me in and I’ll forever be a willing supporter of their humor.

And I enjoyed the fact that for the first half history was there, for the second half it was thrown out the window quite literally. But for a book like this, who cares, you’re in for a silly fun ride regardless of whether it follows history or not. Trust me, just go with the flow, I suppressed my skepticism and gave myself up(though it was easy to do since it made me laugh out loud to resist all disbelief.)

As for the ending, it follows history. There won’t be any great changes to history, with some exceptions of course. And well, everyone does get a happy ending. And for an animal reference, a cat and mouse exists in here, which would prove to be the dynamic of the two characters in history(it’s easy to guess who, since they were cousins and one had the other’s head chopped off).

And not to mention the cast being as diverse as it was, and making a great joke out of Henry the Eighth in the first 10%.

I guess I have said too much, any longer and I’ll have to change this to a recap of the book, which isn’t what intend. So, I’ll end here. The rest is up to you dear reader of this review whether you want to read it or not(but I highly recommend you to like really recommend you to, this book it worth it.)

Rating: 5 our of 5

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A Tyranny Of Petticoats

Since this is a short story anthology, I probably would be reviewing every piece in detail and the take the average rating.

Mother Carey’s Table:

Set in America during the early 18th century, I certainly enjoyed the choice of using native Americans. Importantly, a little bit of myths and fiction did make this rather interesting, and clearly about an awesome girl.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

The Journey

Like my books from this author, her work is as usual great. Set in Alaska during the 18th century, about her namesake of blood affecting her eventual life. Also, eventually finding her way after losinh both her parents, and still remaining strong.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Madeleine’s Choice

One of my personal favourites if you ask me, when Madeleine makes a mistake, one that almost no one could blame her. Love makes a lot of people blind, and when she does know the truth, she is sensible enough to just move with it. Also, on a good note, I like how the author included the often neglected best friend in this.

Rating: 5 out of 5

El Destinos

About Mexican American girls, which again is a rare sight. Not limiting to my often lack of reading in that area. About three sisters, although it didn’t really get to me till the end and took me some time to get used to Rosa really.

Rating: 3 out of 5

High Stakes

A personal favourite too, very little is known about Kilo and the ending clearly suggests that she got what she wanted. Her relationship with the Djinn was so heartbreaking that it made me really happy to know that she would avenge him, and is another strong woman with her own ideals. And clearly, wouldn’t just forget when she knows something is wrong, besides that guy deserves it.

Rating: 5 out of 5

The Red Raven Ball

One particular fondness I have for this, is how the main character doesn’t accept when someone betrayed the country’s trust and also became disloyal. She also had a moral compass and a sensible mind, which are all traits that I enjoy in a main character. She does advise her sister to just marry, and she doesn’t want to be involved in such a thing. During the 1862 where there was wars, there were spies too.

Spies who basically betrayed themselves and began to supply information, and some were women, even socialites became them and I guess this interesting take does draw me interested in that history.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Pearls

A favorite of mine, what to do when a girl doesn’t want to marry in the 19th century. Find a job and run away. Which is what Helen does, and although her life is far from perfect. She never stops believing and helping those children. And well, I agree that education changes everything since it is necessary to read, make deals and without those. Anyone can trick or manipulate you.

One thing I like, is that even once when the creepy fiance came back and tried to possess her, I like the way she handled it. And that was the true surprise of the story.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Gold In The Roots Of Grass

About a Chinese American during those times, someone who works in the laundry and also as a spiritual medium.

A rather interesting read to me, as she helps out a client that she did a couple months earlier. He begs her to do it, and unlike most people although she didn’t have a good end. But she managed to live on in their hearts and became quite famous, as for the ending, is she becoming a ghost bride or what? I do wonder where ghosts can register their marriage actually.

Rating: 5 out of 5

The Legendary Garrett Sisters

I really enjoyed this little tale of two sisters who stand up for themselves and also go against a pretty awful guy. Proved to be interesting and the way that they outsmarted him was pure brilliance, and they aren’t too stupid to live either and realistic enough for me to really like them.

Rating: 5 out of 5

The Colour Of The Sky

A real perfection if you ask me, about a black girl who wants to fly, and one days hopes to see the sky. Also, about the first American black woman to become the pilot. Although she dies in this story, but it is about Antonia. Who would not stop dreaming and stop finding her dream. Even taking the chance to go elsewhere to fulfill it when many would have just given it up.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Bonnie And Clyde

About a female bandit, you can always count me in. And really, this is one who was pushed to the circumstances rather than grew up dreaming of it. But who dreams of becoming a bandit anyway, and about a lawman who wants her. Well, interesting but didn’t leave a lasting impression on me at all.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Hard Times

About a reporter who wants to find a news report, only to see a lot more. And about a black girl who simply works hard, and hopes to see a better life. About migrant workers who don’t have much stability with their jobs. And the ending, like always had been perfection in my eyes when an author touches on social issues without much of a romance, but with a developing close relationship. I really like Llyold when he cannot deny the truth and has to say it.

Rating: 4 out of 5

City of Angels

One thing to note, about lesbian girls and eventually a writer too. I like the way this was handled having Evelyn dream of writing about girls, and the stability she had during the war. When men were away, all they could depend on were the women. And what happens when they come back, loss of jobs. Most importantly was the fact that she never lost faith in anyway and continued to find a way to survive.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Pulse of the Panthers

Didn’t really enjoy it as much as I thought, I did find it a tad difficult to get into their heads and really understand them. Again about a relatable girl who is always the best narrator, and about the activists for black rights and equal treatment. They were treated worse than second class citizens.

Rating: 3 out of 5

The whole world is watching

Although about tumultuous times, this fell short when it came to me. And really, I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would. Although about the protestors taking to the streets during the Vietnam war, I just didn’t really feel the spark and nothing really made me remember.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Overall, I really enjoy this book for what it represents, and that it looked to the invisible women. Ones whose names were forgotten and lost. Also, keeping plenty of badass women around. Some sensible, some dangerous and some just normal women thrust into this. If you want to read about a book with plenty of feminism and during different points of history. You’re looking at the right one.

Rating: 3.7 out of 5

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Our Lady Of The Dunes

I really like the writing. How it is complete and full, all the while the tale is rather literary. And the ending was something that rather surprised me.

I really like this slow development of the story as it slowly escalates, and also talks about the war which was happening. What Jessica hopes to become reality, is of course peace. All the while the entire place strangely never attracted me much.

Although Jessica is a realistic character, she is about as arrogant and as intelligent as any teenager. But the truth is, is that I could not really relate with her. Although there are some moments where she did manage to get to me, most of the time I spent it as a distant reader.

What was surprising to me was the ending. Really, although there were so many moments where it was hinting that it might not go down well. Such as the time where they manage to find a boy, who may be wanted by the camp. And really, it’s 1942, what can you expect at the time can be guessed through the time and what is happening.

But it really didn’t hit me at all, since I didn’t really like Jessica or Sophie or really any of the characters. Just that Jessica seems to know quite a lot about the world and various things. So, yeah, I did on some level like this book but I really couldn’t connect with the characters at all.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5