Thursday, February 28, 2013

Momo's Choice!

Well, this Momo's Choice took the whole family to get Momo into place for this little installment.

The Amory Wars, Volume 1: 

The Second Stage Turbine Blade

By Claudio Sanchez and Mike S. Miller

From Coheed & Cambria's Claudio Sanchez, comes a deeper look into the saga behind their best-selling debut album, The Second Stage Turbine Blade! Coheed and Cambria lead a seemingly normal, quiet life with their four children. Yet when villainous forces behind the mysterious keywork reveal hard hitting truth's behind the couple's real nature, a battle begins that crosses all worlds!

Why it's one of my favorites: Well, because Coheed and Cambria is one of my most favorite bands ever and this story goes right along with their first album with the same same. And this story is completely epic, just like the music. 

Why it's Momo's Choice: Claudio's dog Apollo is one sexy canine.

This was really my first venture into graphic novels and the story and art are pretty amazing. I love Coheed and Cambria and their story and the music that follows their tragic tale. 
Until next, good night and good reads!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Devil You Know - K.H. Koehler

Snarky and handsome hero? Check. Voluptuous vixen? Check. Clever title? Check, check. Son of the Devil? Wait…huh?

“Not only does the devil have an only begotten son, but he’s currently residing in the rural town of Blackwater in northeast Pennsylvania. Semi-retired from law enforcement, the handsome, if cynical, Nick Englebrecht becomes quickly caught up in a local missing child case that seems mundane on the outside, but when the sheriff requests his help as a psychic detective to help find the missing girl, his off-the-books investigation quickly leads him to some terrible truths about life, love and the universe as we know it. And if that isn’t bad enough, the angels have begun an ethnic cleansing of all beings with demonic blood. Of course, Nick is at the top of their to-do list.”

(This is a book I got off of Netgalley, a great site for blog reviewers to get their hands on some amazing free reads to review and share. This is one of the first books I got from them.)

This title is really what got me scratching my chin and thinking that this is a book I want to read. And it started out amazing. Then…I started having mixed emotions about our hero Nick.

Nick had a good voice with amazing one liners and descriptions, however, there were times that I felt that he was a little too creepy for me. And to me, he didn’t sound handsome. At one time, K.H. Koehler described him as David Bowie from the Labyrinth. I like David Bowie, but not really my cup of tea. Also, there seemed to be this really strange obsession with describing the size of hands and man parts was a little off putting. 
There was some sexy time between Nick and Vivian, a half demon like himself, and after reading it I felt like I really needed to take a shower…to wash away the ick factor. But then, Nick would redeem himself by doing something related to the main plot of the story in investigating the missing little girl or do some kind of awesome action scene that involved fighting some seriously badass angels. While reading this, unfortunately, I couldn’t help myself thinking that Nick is merely Diet Dresden: seems like my favorite hero Harry Dresden, but just not as satisfying.

I had an issue with how women were portrayed in this book. Vivian seemed to be more than kind of slutty, and the evil villainess was absolutely bonkers due to her thirst for ultimate power. The only female in the story that seemed stable was Morgana. She was the calm and rational force that seemed to keep Nick grounded in reality.

These issues I had to with the story didn’t prevent me from finishing the tale. I found that my favorite part of the book was the interaction between Nick and Lucifer. It seemed to me the only time where there is genuine emotion other than snark and horny. It was an honest conversation between father and son. The father delivering the worst of bad news, and advising that he is the only one who can stop what was happening, however, he better watch his ass because bad things could happen to him as well.

Nick Engelbrecht, he’s not a bad guy or a bad character, and the story and mythology of the spiritual world was interesting and it did peak my interest. I did enjoy the book for the most part. But I just felt that the things that put me off made it hard to really get behind and cheer for Nick and tell him to go kick some butt. This is the first in series, and really, not for the weak of heart. Will I read the next books? More than likely. There seems to be something up with Vivan. I mean, she was referenced as the Whore of Babylon. So that has to be important right? Right?

Go forth and read, my friends.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Hump Day Book Meme!

Lately, a lot of books I love have been turned into mediocre movies. Warm Bodies. City of Bones. Beautiful Creatures. I just can't take it! I want Hollywood to leave my books alone. So this meme I discovered fits my feeling about books being turned into movies...

My dear little meme: that is so true.

If you're week has been anything like mine, just remember to get reading and we are almost done with this week.

Happy Hump Day everybody!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Alice In Zombieland - Gena Showalter

Is Alice going crazy from guilt and grief? Or are those zombies really after her?

“She won’t rest until she’s sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.
Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.
Her father was right. The monsters are real….
To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies….
I wish I could go back and do a thousand things differently.
I'd tell my sister no.
I'd never beg my mother to talk to my dad.
I'd zip my lips and swallow those hateful words.
Or, barring all of that, I'd hug my sister, my mom and my dad one last time.
I'd tell them I love them.
I wish... Yeah, I wish.”

Alright. This is total cover love. No doubt about it. And title love. I mean, how could I have possibly turn this book down? However, the story…wasn’t what I was expecting.

Even reading the back of the book I was still expecting a more Alice In Wonderland meets zombies, but it wasn’t. Instead we are following the Alice Bell through her recovery of dealing with the death of her family and cooping with the possibility of losing her mind, for she is seeing things. Now, they don’t come out and say the Z-word. Alice calls them monster throughout the  story until she meets tough and dreamy Cole who tells her about the zombies and how they came into being.

I do like the reconstruction of the whole zombie idea in that yes, they do like to take bites out of living folk, they are not craving blood or braaaaaiiiiinnnnss!! (see what I did there?) They are in fact craving the very essence of life. I interpreted the zombies as angry spirits, not happy with their deaths and want so desperately to live, that they feed on our life source.

It was very slow going at the beginning, which of course makes sense in that there is a log of world building that needs to be done. The interactions between Cole and Alice seem to be not too obnoxious. I mean, they are teenagers. Their relationship is that intense sort that is the “I hate your guts, you are such a jerk!” to “Wow…I love you!” Typical teen stuff.

However, the end picks up and there is a healthy amount of action and realizations that set up to be a sequel. My only little niggle with this story was I felt there was a kind of push towards Christianity. Now, all that stuff being said, it wasn’t a full force in your face thing, which I find extra annoying. Just made references to only Christian bands and a couple other little things.

All in all, a nice bad book. It was fun and there were some laugh out loud parts. Thank goodness that Gena Showalter wrote Alice’s grandparents into the story as sweet, well meaning folks who say some of the silliest things ever. It was a nice laugh break from the depression that seems to plague Alice at the beginning of this book. For all of those who want to read this book,  I say go for it, however, don’t expect the zombified version of the classic tale. However, this is a fun kind of no-brainer tale that does a nice twist on the zombie genre. Well played Ms. Showalter…well played.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Momo's Choice

I'm off work today and was able to sneak up on Momo to get her book pick to share with all of you.

So, without further adue, here is Momo's Choice!

Glen Duncan's I, Lucifer.

The Prince of Darkness has been given one last shot at redemption, provided he can live out a reasonably blameless life on earth. Highly sceptical, naturally, the Old Dealmaker negotiates a trial period - a summer holiday in a human body, with all the delights of the flesh.

The body, however, turns out to be that of Declan Gunn, a depressed writer living in Clerkenwell, interrupted in his bath mid-suicide. Ever the opportunist, and with his main scheme bubbling in the background, Luce takes the chance to tap out a few thoughts - to straighten the biblical record, to celebrate his favourite achievements, to let us know just what it's like being him.

Neither living nor explaining turns out to be as easy as it looks. Beset by distractions, miscalculations and all the natural shocks that flesh is heir to, the Father of Lies slowly begins to learn what it's like being us.

Reason for being one of my favorite books: This is probably one of the first books that, as hokey as it sounds, kinda changed my life. It made me look at my own thoughts and beliefs. Also, I discovered that books can be the perfect combonation humor and self reflection.

Reason for being Momo's Choice:  It has one sweet looking cover.

Well, that's it for Momo's Choice. I recommand this book for those who are not faint of heart because well parts of it can be a little tough to read. However, the writing is great and I'm not going to lie, the opening paragraph, is one of my favorites.

Solider on book nerds! and Happy Valentines Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hump Day Book Meme!

Thank goodness it's Wednesday. Not only does that mean that I made it through a three day work week to take a little mini holiday, but it's time to share an awesome book meme that I have discovered. And this one....well....I think it speaks for itself:

You other Nerds can't deny!!

Happy Wednesday everybody. We're almost through the week.
Forge ahead and keep reading!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Hounded - Kevin Hearne

Sexy badass Irish druid who battles a god? Sure. I’ll sign up for that. Wait…he’s how old?

“Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, lives peacefully in Arizona, running an occult bookshop and shape-shifting in his spare time to hunt with his Irish wolfhound. His neighbors and customers think that this handsome, tattooed Irish dude is about twenty-one years old—when in actuality, he’s twenty-one centuries old. Not to mention: He draws his power from the earth, possesses a sharp wit, and wields an even sharper magical sword known as Fragarach, the Answerer. Unfortunately, a very angry Celtic god wants that sword, and he’s hounded Atticus for centuries. Now the determined deity has tracked him down, and Atticus will need all his power—plus the help of a seductive goddess of death, his vampire and werewolf team of attorneys, a sexy bartender possessed by a Hindu witch, and some good old-fashioned luck of the Irish—to kick some Celtic arse and deliver himself from evil.”

I kept coming across this book and its series while searching for Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey series, and thought “Self, why not give this book a try? It doesn’t sound half bad.” So checked it out for the ol’ Kindle (I love being able to check out books from the library on my Kindle…) and started to read. And the book had me instantly hooked from the first paragraph, and the rest of the book was an amazing and kept my undivided attention.

Atticus is, thankfully, a light hearted leading man. Don’t get me wrong: he’s a badass. He can heal and rejuvenate his body and enhance his on magical ability by merely making contact to the earth. He can wield fight and oh yeah, he can do a bit of shape shifting. Atticus has a great sense of humor and a great story telling voice that made the story fun to read. And I hate to compare leading men, and no one can replace my love for Harry Dresden, but I would rather hang out with Atticus O’Sullivan as he would probably be an awesome drinking buddy with his Irish lilt and would probably have some stellar stories to tell. Harry Dresden, not so much of a party guy as he does seem to be a bit of downer with all the crap that Jim Butcher seems to put him through (really Harry Dresden…I love you. You will always be my main man, you just seem to be carrying a lot of baggage lately.)

The writing flows nicely and there are some really amazing one liners and dialogue between characters. My favorite intersections are between Atticus and his Irish wolfhound, Oberon. That’s right Atticus has a telepathic link to his dog. Which I totally wish I had because then maybe my dog would actually listen to me and I would be able to understand why she insists on licking everything and eating my daughters crayons. Anyway, the conversations with his dog always seem to ground Atticus to the present. It seems that Oberon makes Atticus appreciate the now, because let’s face it, Atticus is super old and though he drinks his herbal teas that keep him young and his mind stable, he does tend to have his mind go back to his ancient past. And I love stories with dog. On top of that, I have always wanted an Irish wolfhound.

This book was great from start to finish. There was no lag in the story. Kevin Hearne kept the story moving constantly and all the characters were interesting and fun. Even the bad guys were interesting. After reading this, I instantly went on goodreads and added the entire series to my to-read list. I really do need to make the time to read book two. I need some time with the fun loving and long lived Atticus O’Sullivan.

But really? Does he have to be twenty-one centuries old?!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Greywalker - Kat Richardson

What happens when your head is bashed in and you come back from the dead? What do you become?

“When Harper comes to in the hospital, she begins to feel a bit ...strange. She sees things that can only be described as weird-shapes emerging from a foggy grey mist, snarling teeth, creatures roaring. But Harper's not crazy. Her "death" has made her a Greywalker-able to move between our world and the mysterious, cross-over zone where things that go bump in the night exist. And her new gift (or curse) is about to drag her into that world of vampires and ghosts, magic and witches, necromancers and sinister artifacts. Whether she likes it or not.”

So this is one of those books where the characters are relatable and you do care about them, and  the idea of the story and plot are good, but felt the execution was a little lacking. Harper Blaine, who is a private investigator, is a likable character and she does seem to have her stuff together. This book had a really great start where Harper is discussing getting her head caved in by a person she is investigating. Then there was her weird and strange bad trip in the hospital as she was recovering. That is when we are introduced to the Gray: the mystical in between that is a border for life and death, with different depths and layers. It’s a good start for the introduction of a new character in what could be an interesting world.

But then, well, a lot of things happen. Way too many things in my opinion: protecting her vampire client and taking down the big boss man over the vampires, dealing with her new found ability, meeting new friends, and then dealing with an icky necromancer artifact. All of it was a little too much and it was hard to process everything. Though most books do have the plot A and plot B story lines, this one felt a little all over the place and was a little hard to follow…kind of like Spider Man 3. Just saying.

Is this one book enough for me to continue the entire series? Probably not. Not because I didn’t like the book, I just finished this story feeling slightly “Meh,” like a sad little hipster. I just wasn't impressed at all. I was unfortunately not captivated by the character or the story. Haper Blaine was not the bad ass chick I hoped for.  But I wouldn’t rule out reading the second book. I don’t feel like I wasted my time reading this tale, which is always a good thing. Because there is nothing worse than feeling like wasting your time on a book (Which is kind of how I’m feeling now with the book I’m currently reading…but that’s another for another blog…)

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Hump Day Book Meme!

Hello my friends.

It's that time of the week again where I show you a meme that I love. And this one definitely speaks the truth for me. Well, not right now...but I guarantee that once I get Kim Harrison's new book for her Rachel Morgan series, Ever After, this will be me.

And I may complain about it the next day about how sleepy I am, but at the same time I will say it was totally worth the all nighter.

I *heart* books...

Friday, February 1, 2013

Behemoth - Scott Westerfeld

Adventure awaits for Darwinist and Clanker alike in Istanbul. Let the action begin!

“The behemoth is the fiercest creature in the British navy. It can swallow enemy battleships with one bite. The Darwinists will need it, now that they are at war with the Clanker powers. Deryn is a girl posing as a boy in the British Air Service, and Alek is the heir to an empire posing as a commoner. Finally together aboard the airship Leviathan, they hope to bring the war to a halt. But when disaster strikes the Leviathan's peacekeeping mission, they find themselves alone and hunted in enemy territory. Alek and Deryn will need great skill, new allies, and brave hearts to face what's ahead.”

I do love a great book series? Don’t you? And this second book in Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan series does not lack in adventure or character development. Which is always nice. There is a good balance of the point view shifts between Alek and Deryn. Both points of view show us how they grow confident they grow in their own decision making and their strengths and weaknesses are displayed and put to the test. Alek being left without his trusted adviser, him being the one to make the decisions and hope that they are good ones. Deryn being in charge of a secret mission that fails, and then fleeing to Istanbul in search of Alek and also struggling with her growing feelings for the young prince.

All the action scenes were well written and easy to imagine. Though this is an alternative steam punk reality of World War I, there is no problem suspending reality and accepting that yeah, there are giant steam powered robot elephants walking around Istanbul. And of course there is a giant whale who is a hydrogen breather that is used as an airship. Totally.

We are introduced to a few new, interesting and pivotal characters that help propel the story moving forward: revolutionaries and newspaper men, and strange new fabricated beasties. Each new character and all their words were not misplaced and everything had a purpose. No plot fodder.

I again listened to this on audio book with Alan Cumming as the narrator and it was awesome…of course. Most sequels in a book series seem to be mainly filler, prepping us as the reader for the big finale. This book, however, does not disappoint and there is no down time in this book. From start to finish there is action and mystery and emotion that pulls you in and wish you lived in Alek and Deryn’s steam punk fantastic world.