So I got sick. Like, really really sick. Not death bed sick but close. Anyway. things should return to normal here, soonish. Say by Monday? Thanks for hanging on.
It’s that time of the year when I start thinking about reading challenges. I do not usually take part in any official challenges because I’m a very fickle reader. I like to read whatever I feel like without having to follow a particular list or schedule. This is why I’m so incompatible with book clubs. However, I like to challenge myself. So I designed some unofficial reading challenges to keep my reading interesting. You are welcome to join me in any of these challenges.
Literary Fiction Challenge
So admittedly, I don’t read too many lit fic. novels. However, since I read so many kid lit, I feel like I need to read some adult lit. to give my reading some variety and keep me exposed to different kinds of writing. The books I want to read this year (in no particular order) are:
- The Tiger’s Wife – Tea O’Breht
- Room – Emma Donoghue
- The Secrets of Jin Shei – Alma Alexander (Not sure how literary this is but whatever.)
- A Lion Among Men – Gregory Maguire
- Shantaram – Gregory David Roberts
- The Sweet Girl – Annabel Lyon
- Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn
- Ready Player One – Ernest Cline
- Tell the Wolves I’m Home – Carol Rifka Brunt
- When We Were Executioners – J. M. McDermott
- The Man Who Rained – Ali Shaw
- Chocolat – Joanne Harris
Another genre I tend not to read too much of if I can help it. However, I’m going to try and challenge myself to read a modest number this coming year. The books are:
- The Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
- Tom Jones – Henry Fielding
- Pinnochio – Carlo Colladi
- The Metamorphoses – Ovid
- Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
I’ll be reading a whole lot of critical work as I work on my thesis in the latter part of 2013. However, I think it would be majorly interesting to read a selection of non-fiction novels to spice up my reading. Not very many. The books I have chosen are:
- Mother Tongue – Bill Bryson
- The Butterfly Mosque – G. Willow Wilson
- A Literate Passion – Anais Nin
- The Horologican – Mark Forsyth
- Fantastic Metamorphoses, Other Worlds – Marina Warner
Literature from Around the World
I have a fondness for translated work, especially Asian lit. I’d like to get some diversity in my reading. My selections include:
- Please Look After Mom – Kyung-Sook Shin
- The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Stieg Larrson
- My Name is Red – Orhan Pamuk
- Baba Yaga Laid an Egg – Dubravka Ugresic
- The Hurricane Party – Klas Ostegren
- The Goddess Chronicle – Natsuo Kirino
- Twinkle Twinkle – Kaori Ekuni
- The Bastard of Istanbul – Eli Shafak
- The Fox Window and Other Stories – Awa Naoko
- The Summer of Ubume – Natsuhiko Kyogoku
- The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle – Haruki Murakami
- School Girl – Osamu Dazai
Audrey Whitticomb has nothing to fear. Her mother is the superhero Morning Star, the most deadly crime-fighter in the Twin Cities, so it’s hard for Audrey not to feel safe. That is, until she’s lured into the sweet night air by something human and not human–something with talons and teeth, and a wide, scarlet smile.
Now Audrey knows the truth: her mom doesn’t fight crime at night. She fights Harrowers–livid, merciless beings who were trapped Beneath eons ago. Yet some have managed to escape. And they want Audrey dead, just because of who she is: one of the Kin.
To survive, Audrey will need to sharpen the powers she has always had. When she gets close to someone, dark corners of the person’s memories become her own, and she sometimes even glimpses the future. If Audrey could only get close to Patrick Tigue, a powerful Harrower masquerading as human, she could use her Knowing to discover the Harrowers’ next move. But Leon, her mother’s bossy, infuriatingly attractive sidekick, has other ideas. Lately, he won’t let Audrey out of his sight.
When an unthinkable betrayal puts Minneapolis in terrible danger, Audrey discovers a wild, untamed power within herself. It may be the key to saving her herself, her family, and her city. Or it may be the force that destroys everything–and everyone–she loves.
I hate questions that ask me what kind of superpower I would have like to have because I don’t see why I have to choose just one – since I am dreaming, why can I not dream about having them all? But that’s just me. I was never the type to read the Marvel comics – to be fair, we didn’t have them in Fiji. Or if we did, I didn’t see them. The closest thing I had to graphic novels about superheroes was Phantom, this dude who lives in a cave with his wife and kid, goes around in a bodysuit (tights) and has a ring with a skull on it. He solves crimes but I don’t know his motivation. Anyway, this little prologue is to prepare you for Dark Star, a rare young adult novel about superheroes. Well, one directed at girls. It was the first one I read anyway.
It is not without its flaws but I enjoyed it for a couple of reasons. Audrey is easy to like, snarky, feisty and everything I want in a protagonist. And she has a really cool Mom. No seriously, if there were awards for great mothers in young adult literature, she would win it. She has her own life, her own issues apart from Audrey; she is the Morning Star and that becomes more her identity than the persona she dons to save the world every night. It would have been easy for Audrey to be drowned by her mother’s loud and larger than life presence but to Frenette’s credit, she creates a careful balance between the two so that while the reader is a bit awed by Morning Star, it is still Audrey’s story that is most attractive. The pacing is quite brisk.
I was quite impressed by the plotting to be honest. Frenette took some twists and turns that I hadn’t expected and the complication I had expected didn’t come to pass. What I’m trying to say is that the book isn’t predictable and I like that. The romance is interesting though I’m not too pleased with the whole protector business. It makes sense that they do but well, I hope the romance is delved into a bit more in the next book. Also, Audrey’s rushing into situations while knowing the situations are dangerous and she is not equipped to handle them got a bit old. However, the whole superhero culture is fascinating, especially the bit about being “called” to be a Guardian and how that effects a person.
So do I recommend this to you? I do. I enjoyed it. it’s not perfect but it’s entertaining and I think it should tide you over as you wait for the next superhero movie.
Darcy Jones doesn’t remember anything before the day she was abandoned as a child outside a Chicago firehouse. She has never really belonged anywhere—but she couldn’t have guessed that she comes from an alternate world where the Great Chicago Fire didn’t happen and deadly creatures called Shades terrorize the human population.
Memories begin to haunt Darcy when a new boy arrives at her high school, and he makes her feel both desire and desired in a way she hadn’t thought possible. But Conn’s interest in her is confusing. It doesn’t line up with the way he first looked at her.
As if she were his enemy.
When Conn betrays Darcy, she realizes that she can’t rely on anything—not herself, not the laws of nature, and certainly not him. Darcy decides to infiltrate the Shadow Society and uncover the Shades’ latest terrorist plot. What she finds out will change her world forever . . .
In this smart, compulsively readable novel, master storyteller Marie Rutkoski has crafted an utterly original world, characters you won’t soon forget, and a tale full of intrigue and suspense.
First, let me talk about I liked. This is a fresh mythology, I don’t think we’ve been down this road before. At least, I haven’t. the pacing is good and things happen throughout the novel though there is a lot happening at the end. Anyway.
I was excited when I first found out that Rutkoski was writing a YA novel because her middle trilogy is a favourite of mine. I expected something along the same lines in The Shadow Society but unfortunately, I didn’t get it. I don’t want to say that everyone will have the same feeling or reaction as me because obviously, that is untrue. My feelings about this book may be because I am a very close reader and I tend to read a lot between the lines and am conscious of what is implicit in the narrative
What troubles me most about this novel is that it feels less organic and more staged. I am just speculating here, of course, but honestly, throughout the novel, I got the feeling that the author was following a guide on how to write the perfect YA novel. What elements to add, what not to add, what works and what doesn’t. It didn’t seem like the story came together as it was being told but rather as though these elements were pushed together in the hopes they would bond and form a cohesive narrative. My feelings, anyway.
For instance, the love interest. The main one. I hated him. I hated him quite a lot and I usually do not have the energy to hate fictional characters. He is violent towards the main character, he hurts, betrays her more than once and in spite of all that, in spite of her friends acting as though the guy is, I don’t know, a skunk in disguise, the main character still falls for him. And I do not see one single reason why. I mean, yeah he has a reason for hating the main character and you know, arresting her, throwing her into prison and taking away from everything she’s familiar with and everyone she loves, oh but he’s hurting and he’s misunderstood and she loves him. Give me a freaking break. Like seriously. Maybe I have left puberty far behind and that is why this guy rings all the wrong bells for me. And then there is the absolutely unnecessary love interest. I mean, really? He has no reason to be in love with her and I don’t see why he likes her especially since she’s such a troll to him – even when he helps her out. Then there is another guy, her best friend, who loves her and has loved her since eons ago but of course, his charisma fades in the face of the misunderstood only occasionally violent main character.
Well. The plot also is not very impressive. There are predictable twists and there’s this “eureka” moment which is not really one at all. And just…I did not like the book. The way the friends react when this brutish love interest makes an appearance is too melodramatic to be real (even though it turns out their misgivings were sound). I just was majorly disappointed in this novel. If you want something by Marie Rutkoski which gives you a more accurate look at her wordsmithery, I recommend her Kronos Chronicles. Vastly superior.
On My Radar is a meme inspired by The Book Smugglers.
Set on an isolated island off the Scottish coast, in a community run by women who are in awe of a mysterious structure called the Thrashing House, the novel is narrated by two teenage girls in very different circumstances. Mary is doing her best to protect her younger brother, Barney, as the island’s sons are mysteriously disappearing. Morgan is scheming to escape the prison her parents have made of their home. The two girls unite, each on a desperate mission in which secrets will be revealed and lives changed forever
Young Wataru Mitani’s life is a mess. His father has abandoned him and his mother has been hospitalized after a suicide attempt. Desperately he searches for some way to change his life; a way to alter his fate.
To achieve his goal, he must navigate the magical world of Vision, a land filled with creatures both fierce and friendly. And to complicate matters, he must outwit a merciless rival from the real world.
Wataru’s ultimate destination is the Tower of Destiny where a goddess of fate awaits. Only when he has finished his journey and collected five elusive gemstones will he possess the Demon’s Bane; the key that will unlock his future.
Charity, bravery, faith, grace and the power of darkness and light: these are the provinces of each gemstone. Brought together, they have the immeasurable power to bring Wataru’s family back together again.
Penelope Tredwell is the feisty thirteen-year-old orphan heiress of the bestselling magazine, The Penny Dreadful. Her masterly tales of the macabre are gripping Victorian Britain, even if no one knows she’s the real author. One day a letter she receives from the governor of the notorious Bedlam madhouse plunges her into an adventure more terrifying than anything she ever imagined…
THE GRAVEYARD BOOK meets JONATHAN STRANGE & MR. NORRELL in this gothic steampunk page-turner for readers of all ages.
Bartholomew Kettle won’t live long. Changelings never do. The child of a human mother and a faery father, Bartholomew is a secret, despised by both his races. If the English don’t hang him for witchcraft, the faerys will do something worse. So his mother keeps him locked away, hidden from the world in the faery slums of Bath.
But one day Bartholomew witnesses a mysterious lady kidnap another changeling through a shadowy portal, and he realizes the danger is closer than ever before. Changelings are surfacing in the rivers, their bodies empty of blood and bone and their skin covered in red markings. A powerful figure sits in the shadows, pushing the pieces in place for some terrible victory. When a sinister faery in a top-hat begins to stalk Bartholomew’s steps, he knows it’s his turn. Something is coming for him. Something needs him. But when you’re a changeling there’s no where to run…
A sweeping Gothic thriller based on the spine-chilling “Bluebeard” fairytale.
17-year-old Sophia Petheram has been sheltered by her doting family all her life, until the day her father dies. It’s 1855, and with no money and few options, she goes to live with her guardian, the mysterious Bernard de Cressac, at the astonishingly lavish Wyndriven Abbey in Mississippi.
Sophie has always longed for a comfortable life, and she finds herself both attracted to and shocked by the charm and easy manners of her overgenerous guardian. But as she begins to piece together the mystery of his past, it’s as if thread by thread, a silken net is woven around her. And when she begins glimpsing the ghosts of his former wives (all with hair as red as her own) in the forgotten corners and dark hallways of the Abbey, Sophie knows she’s in de Cressac’s trap.
From the winner of the 2004 Caldecott Medal comes a memorable new work, a novel of singular insight and imagination that transports readers to the Old Country, where “all the fairy tales come from, where there was magic — and there was war.” There, Gisella stares a moment too long into the eyes of a fox, and she and the fox exchange shapes. Gisella’s quest to get her girl-body back takes her on a journey across a war-ravaged country that has lost its shape. She encounters magic, bloodshed, and questions of power and justice — until finally, looking into the eyes of the fox once more, she faces a strange and startling choice about her own nature. Part adventure story and part fable; exciting, beautifully told, rich in humor and wisdom, The Old Country is the work of an artist and storyteller at the height of his powers.
So recently I read TheStorySiren’s post on the ways authors can get her to read their books and this is sort of similar except I am not, at all, talking about review copies since I’m not that prominent of a book blogger (yet, hey, who knows? My eminence is just undiscovered, not nonexistent, hur).
Till recently, I, and my to read list, were easy where book choices are concerned. If it was YA, paranormal, well then, off it would go into my to read list. But – you knew there was a but coming, come on now – times are changing, my lovelies. As the market continues to get saturated by YA novels (everyone wants to get in on the action, or in this case, the profit), the Reader (it’s a noun because it is referring to me or did I mean it is capitalized, yeah whatever, you get the idea) needs to be more discerning. She, because of the limits on her free time, has no choice but to become more careful of the choices she makes with regards to the books she chooses to read in the future. (See how many times I used choice/choose in that sentence? I am boss.)
For one thing, I use the library a lot but I buy books too and I loathe buying books I end up hating. Money is money, kay? And I don’t have much of it so…
For another, my time is precious.
And these two criteria are shared by many other (if not all) readers. Now, following is a list that is personalized to me but my hangups and nitpicking might be shared by other people so if you are an author/bookseller who might have stumbled onto my blog by whatever fate, please do me a favor and read it.
In my opinion, this is one of the most important aspects of the book. I hate it when there is no synopsis available (and yes, there are books who have no synopsis, as weird as that may sound). How am I supposed to know whether I am interested in the story the book is telling if there’s no synopsis?
Or, if there is a synopsis, it is not reflective of anything new or innovative the book may be contributing to the genre. I am not lying, there are books out there whose synopses can be exchanged for another without any significant difference to the plot. Maybe it is because a lot of the books coming out nowadays are copies of each other – vampires/wolves/whatever, love triangle, teen girl, insta-love etc – but dude, you want me to read your book right? Make it sound like something new!
This is not the 17th century where “new and original” were dirty words (in literature, in Britain – context). We are modern people running after the newest “original” thrill. If I’m going to read your book, the synopsis has to be appealing.
And well written. For God’s sakes, check your spelling, your grammar, your sentence structure. No matter how pretty the cover is, I am not going to buy a book whose synopsis sounds like the story is the latest reincarnation of Twilight. No.
Blurbs and Comparisons
You know how in books there are little tags that say “the latest Hunger Games” or “Twilight for new readers*” – every time I see one of those, I roll my eyes. Comparisons do nothing but harm. At least to me. For one thing, there is already The Hunger Games (of which I am an avid fan) and proclamations about there being a “new” Hunger Games does nothing but make me scoff. We don’t need a new Hunger Games, we need something new. And, God forbid, the book doesn’t live up to the hype (of being like The Hunger Games because those are pretty big boots to fill) then there’s mockery involved.
The best bet? Leave it be.
I don’t know about you guys, but blurbs pay no role when I am making a decision about whether to read a book or not. Just because I like the book the author doing the blurb has written doesn’t mean our reading tastes are similar. So. Yeah. On the flip side, if I like author who has blurbed the book and I hate the novel, it’s going to make me wary of reading blurbing author’s books because now I’m all suspicious about what her new book is like, I will wonder how much she was influenced by the book I hate and if her works reflects the thoughts/tropes…you get the idea.
I’m not asking for much, am I? But really, the only important thing out of the three is the synopsis. One example of a good book with a terrible synopsis is The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman.
It’s finals time so I shall be battling papers and stress and my posts will be extremely infrequent. Please bear with me.
So I usually don’t do this because I am the most scattered person I know and whenever I plan things, I feel compelled to do something totally opposite to my plans. Call me contrary. However, in the spirit of getting organized, I feel like I should map out my month. Or vaguely outline it. Anyway, coming up is:
1. A giveaway of Hades by Alexandra Adornetto
2. A blog tour post (probably an interview or a top ten, am not sure) of Vanish by Sophie Jordan
3. Five days of Abarat (Sept 22nd – 27th) posts to get you all prepped up for the release of the third book in the series.
4. A Ramadan wrap up post. (With pictures of food. Hur.)
5. Reviews. Plenty of reviews.
Sounds good? Since school is starting and my plate is going to be very full, I’m not sure how my blogging will be affected. I’m pretty good with scheduling and stuff though, so it should be okay. Anyway, a proper post (the giveaway post) later today.
And what am I going to be reading?
Four books for sure:
1. Abarat – Clive Barker
2. Abarat 2 – Clive Barker
3. Abarat 3 – Clive Barker
4. Triangles – Ellen Hopkins
And I am taking three English Lit classes so plenty of stuff to read there as well. Insert a sigh. Anyway, this is what’s going to be happening on Bibliophilic Monologues. :D
Hi guys, I hope you have enjoyed the the Random Magic Tour posts. If you did like them and would like to see more, I’ll be posting a tour schedule below and you can check out the past and future posts in the tour. Also, if you will look in the side bar, you will notice a banner which invites you to collect points and win some plunder – click on the banner for rules and how to play.
Random Magic Tour: Pirates!
May 10-30, 2011
About: Random Magic (http://tinyurl.com/65lgvz9)
Tour organization: Lyrika Publicis
Triton Tavern proprietress and guest relations: vvb32
Contact the tour: @RandomMagicTour (http://twitter.com/randommagictour)
Rum + Plunder Treasure Hunt (May 11-30)
Win some marrrrrvelous plunder!
Browse prizes (http://tinyurl.com/3f3bqgg)
Bonus: Little Pirate Prizes
Cool surprise treasures scattered throughout the tour…
Mermaid’s Cove Musical Blog Hop
Shiver me timbers! Here be a round
of jolly tunes about the sweet trade.
Diary of a Bookworm
Songs for: Poetic pirates
Triton’s Tavern opens: Tour updates (http://tinyurl.com/3dyadku)
Rum + Plunder tour hunt opens
Rum + Plunder: Join the hunt (http://tinyurl.com/3f3bqgg)
The Fluidity of Time
Feature: Discussion: Seafaring culture and beliefs
Feature: Pirate Queens: #1 of 10: The Lioness of Brittany
Video review, <i>Random Magic</i>
Feature: Video reading, <i>Random Magic</i>
Feature: Pirate Queens: #2 of 10: Lai Choi San
Dr. Stravagante’s Traveling Circus
Review (Dual language: English, Italian)
Feature: Arrrgh! How to talk like a pirate
Plus: Random Magic and unusual grub
Bonus: Free audio book, The Pirates Own Book
(Contemporary usage: The Pirates’ Own Book
Feature: Cinematic Swashbucklers
Bonus: Free audio book, Buccaneers and Pirates of our Coasts
Triton’s Tavern meet-up
Tour tidbits and pints o’ grog
Feature: A Dandy in Distress,
the preposterous piratical melodrama continues (Part 2 of 3)
The Epic Rat
Feature: Grub and Bumbo
Feature: Pirate Queens: #4 of 10: Anne Bonny
Bonus: Free audio book, Among Malay Pirates and Other Tales of
Peril and Adventure
Miss Page-Turner’s City of Books
Feature: Gallery: Sailing the Seven Seas
Feature: Pirate Queens: #5 of 10: Grace O’Malley
Songs and Stories
Feature: Finding Starboard
Video review, Random Magic
Feature: Post Like a Pirate
Feature: Pirate Queens: #7 of 10: A Salmagundi of She-Pirates
Feature: Literary Brigands
Feature: Pirate Queens: #8 of 10: Anne Dieu-Le-Veut
Bonus: Free audio book, The Frozen Pirate
Book Lover – Book Chicks
Feature: Discussion: (Video) Real-life pirates
Bonus: Free audio book, Great Pirate Stories
Vampires and Tofu
Feature: Casting Random Magic
Feature: Pirate Lairs: Ocracoke Inlet and the legend of Blackbeard’s ghost
Bonus: Pirate karaoke
Liana’s Paper Doll Blog
Design doll: Queens of the Sea: #9 of 10
Bonus: Quiz: Find your Random Magic twin
I <3 Reading (I Love Reading)
Review (Dual language, Flemish/English)
Bonus: Video lecture about pirate queen Grace O’Malley
Bonus: Game: Blackbeard’s Gold
Feature: By Land or Sea (Vintage maps)
Feature: Pirate Lairs: Tortuga, Port Royal,
New Providence and the Brethren of the Coast
Bonus: Game: Pirate Chains
Gofita’s Pages (Heather)
Feature: How-to: Pirate makeover
Bonus: Free audio book, The Sea Hawk
Bonus: (Video) Pirate movie night
Beyond Strange New Words
Feature: Songs from the Sea (Sea shanties)
Feature: Pirate Queens: #9 of 10: Winnie Flapjack
Bonus: The Pirate Modiste (Dress-up doll)
Books, Sweets and other Treats
Feature: Grog and Sangaree
Feature: Pirate Queens: #10 of 10: Mary Read
The Book Addict
The Book Addict video channel
Feature: (Video) Top five Random Magic quotes
Feature: (Video) Reading from Random Magic
Bonus: The Mermaid Maker (Dress-up doll)
This Miss Loves to Read
Feature: Discussion: Top 10 fictional corsairs and buccaneers
Bonus: Free audio book, Captain Blood
Bonus: Pirate karaoke
Splash of our Worlds
Feature: Video discussion, Random Magic and pirates
(Int’l: Greek language, English transcript)
Bonus: Free audio book, Howard Pyle’s Book of Pirates
Bonus: Game: Pirate’s Quest
Sea Wolves Reading Circle
Ahoy, matey! Here be a treasure chest of
great piratey reads, plucked from shelves
by a scandalous crew from near and far.
The Fluidity of Time
The Diary of a Bookworm
The Parting Glass
Tour summaries and a pub sing
Wrap day! Feel free to visit all the cool
blogs on tour to browse wrap day posts.
Rum + Plunder (http://tinyurl.com/3f3bqgg): Final tallies
Little Pirate Prizes: Final tallies begin
Winners announced: June 6
Twilight meets The Princess Diaries in the new series from the author of Honeymoon of the Dead
On her sixteenth birthday, Anastasija Parker learns that her so-called deadbeat dad is actually a vampire king. And he wants Ana to assume her rightful position at his side, in spite of the fact that she has witch’s blood running through her veins-from her mother’s side.
Too bad witches and vampires are mortal enemies. And now Ana’s parents are at each other’s throats over her future. It’s up to Ana to make a choice, but deciding your eternal destiny is a pretty big deal for a girl who just wants to get through high school.
I honestly believe that the synopsis does the book a disservice by comparing it to Twilight. Indeed, there are some similarities but I think Ms. Hallaway has deviated from the whole vampire culture of glitter and glamour by presenting them in an interestingly…hmm, I wouldn’t say realistic but realer manner than other authors of the same genre do.
The book deals with issues that will be relatable to today’s teens, at least one issue that is more prevalent than others in some contexts: not being what your parents and your peers want you to be. In fact, “being unable to be what they want you to be.” Anastasija’s mother really, really wants her to be a witch. She wants it to the point that she willfully ignores the fact that Anastasija’s father being a vampire (and the king, at that) would probably change something in the genetics that allow the women in her family to handle magic and which logically enough leads to Anastasija being unable to do what is expected of her. There is a lot of pressure – kinda unhealthy, if you ask me. As if a monster mom is not enough, there’s her father – who has been absent for sixteen years and at this crucial moment, waltzes up and tries to lay claim on her – in fact, both parents fight over their child as though she is some prized Monet that both would kill to have.
And then there are the boys. Of course there are two of them. One of them is a vampire hunter and the other is a vampire. You can tell they won’t be sitting down to share their love woes with each other any time soon. But Ms. Hallaway twists the love triangle in a manner that will leave you feeling as confused as perhaps Ana. It’s not the usual A loves B but B is madly in love with C who loves B. Ana has feelings for both guys and I dare say that both are of the non-platonic variety. Both guys remain interesting － Ｉ want to know more about them. I liked how the relationship bit is quite clear if not simple. Pretty straight forward while retaining it’s chemistry. I won’t say more about it except that you have to read the book to find out what I’m saying.
The ending of the book does lay on the cheese a bit too thickly to my liking. It had held on to an almost breezy narrative until things got way too creepy, way too fast. How much will a parent do to keep their child? And if they go to those lengths, will they really give up just like that? The ending seemed a bit forced and contrived and it didn’t really persuade. However, the book in its entirety is entertaining and does leave you wanting more. As I implied before, it’s treatment of vampires as something other than undead Gods, all beautiful and all too tempting makes this series a very welcome addition to the genre.