Tag Archive | 3 stars

Book Review: Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead

Book Review: Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead (Georgina Kincaid #1)

Format: paperback

First Published: March 1st, 2007

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, Demons, Angels, Vampires

Synopsis (from Goodreads)“Something wicked is at work in Seattle’s demon underground…”

Being a succubus sounds pretty glamorous. Shape-shifting, killer wardrobe, what’s not to like? But Georgina Kincaid’s life is far from exotic. Her boss is a middle-management demon with a thing for John Cusack movies, and she can’t have a decent date without sucking away part of the guy’s life, which means her crush on sexy writer Seth Mortensen is going nowhere fast. But all of that pales in significance when an unknown entity “helpfully” begins killing her immortal adversaries. For once, all her hot charms and drop-dead one-liners won’t help, because there are some creatures out there that both heaven and hell want to deny…

Review: 

“Statistics show that most mortals sell their souls for five main reasons: sex, money, power, revenge, and love. In that order. I suppose that I should have been resassured, then, that i was out here assisting with numero uno, but the whole situation just made me feel … well, sleazy. And coming from me, that was something.”

From the first line, Georgina Kincaid was a heroine I could tell I was going to like. Novels written from the first person perspective usually aren’t my cup of tea but I enjoyed her self-deprecating humour and the way she approached life. Despite being a succubus (sex demon) on the side of dark and living for centuries, she savours the things she values in life – like reading only five pages a day of her favourite novels because there’s only that once you can read a book for the first time. I’ve read many novels with immortal main characters but Georgina stood out to me. She’s modern and takes care to keep up with the language and customs of the present day, very careful not to date herself.

This book had the potential to be quite dark but it managed to be light hearted. The idea of a sex demon with a personal code of conduct and a reasonably strong moral compass amused me. I loved the witty one liners Georgina threw around and her relationships with the males in this book. And there were a fair few male characters that complicated Georgina’s life – From Hugh the imp and Peter and Cody the vampires to Warren and Doug – co-workers of Georgina’s at the Emerald City book store – and can’t be forgetting Seth and Roman, they all seemed to complicate her life. It was amusing to see that a succubus who by profession was sexually in control to be so mixed up over men.

I found this book to be a little slow after the first chapter – a lot of groundwork to lay – but it picked up reasonably quickly and was a very entertaining read. I guessed who the villain was fairly early on but I was still looking forward to and was extremely eager to find out exactly how everything played out in the end. The characters are really what make this book as good as I found it – especially Georgina. I love the sex demon who was jaded regarding making love still just wanted to love and be loved in return. She’s incredibly sweet for someone who is as sexual and sensual as she is. I love the message that there’s always hope and that love is something that is attainable for anyone and everyone. One of my favourite quotes from the novel came from the angel Carter: “Love is rarely flawless … It is the imperfection that makes love perfect”. For a hopeless romantic like myself it’s lines like this that make me adore books. I have already bought the second book in this series.

Rating: 

3.5 out of 5

Purchase book at:

Book Depository / Amazon / FishPond

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Book Review: Sisterhood Everlasting by Ann Brashares

Book Review: Sisterhood Everlasting by Ann Brashares (Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants #5)

Format: Hardcover

First Published: June 1, 2011

Genre: Young Adult, Chick Lit

Synopsis (from Goodreads): From #1 New York Times bestselling author Ann Brashares comes the welcome return of the characters whose friendship became a touchstone for a generation. Now Tibby, Lena, Carmen, and Bridget have grown up, starting their lives on their own. And though the jeans they shared are long gone, the sisterhood is everlasting.

Despite having jobs and men that they love, each knows that something is missing: the closeness that once sustained them. Carmen is a successful actress in New York, engaged to be married, but misses her friends. Lena finds solace in her art, teaching in Rhode Island, but still thinks of Kostos and the road she didn’t take. Bridget lives with her longtime boyfriend, Eric, in San Francisco, and though a part of her wants to settle down, a bigger part can’t seem to shed her old restlessness.

Then Tibby reaches out to bridge the distance, sending the others plane tickets for a reunion that they all breathlessly await. And indeed, it will change their lives forever—but in ways that none of them could ever have expected.

As moving and life-changing as an encounter with long-lost best friends, Sisterhood Everlasting is a powerful story about growing up, losing your way, and finding the courage to create a new one.

Review: 

Growing up I read the first book in this series and in many ways reading this latest instalment was like welcoming an old friend back into my life. The girls, now women, were true to how I remembered them and yet different.

This novel starts off with Carmen – the youngest of the group. Once an awkward teenager, now a glamorous TV star with a successful fiancé and a gorgeous New York City apartment, Carmen seems to have it all. Lena has embraced her artistic side and is selling her paintings and working at the art college she was attending as a student all those years ago. Bridget is still as impulsive as ever but still with Eric and now living in San Francisco. And Tibby? Well… that seems a bit of a mystery to everyone. Since she moved to Australia two years ago contact has been sporadic at best.

When Tibby gives the other three girls tickets Greece for an impromptu reunion all the women are excited. But what happens on the Grecian island is something that will change their lives forever.

I had some problems with this story. The characters were the same as I remembered and yet different in a way that felt odd to me. I connected so strongly with the girls when I was in my teens. Our struggles were somewhat similar and I could relate to them. But now, they’re facing problems that I haven’t – and hope in many ways that I won’t ever – and whilst I could imagine the things happening to them was right up their alleys, at the same time I didn’t feel the same way with regards to their relationships with me.

This story was in many ways nostalgic but I liked how whilst there were references to the events of the past books, the past wasn’t dwelt upon. The action was in the present. Whilst life hadn’t gone exactly according to plan for all of them, for the most part they weren’t trying to relive their past. I did miss the little letters and emails that prefaced chapters in some of the other books but the quotes before each chapter were fitting.

I felt like Tibby was a little out of character. The message of this book for me is one of friends forever, and as long as you have your sisterhood you’ll never be alone. And yet Tibby embarked on a whole new life without letting the other girls in. It worked in the sense of that mystery was needed to drive the novel to a fitting conclusion but it didn’t sit well for me with regards to the close-knit friendship that the four of them had.

I am a little worried about the sisterhood – Bee in particular. They seem a little too co-dependant. I like the friendship aspect but the ending message that I was left with was that for Bee, she couldn’t exist without the sisterhood and I for me… I’m so very worried about her. I spent the whole novel worrying about her and I hope that the others can help her. (I am aware these are fictional characters.)

This last installment of the Sisterhood was true to the series. In terms of structure and story it closely followed the formula set out by the others – They meet up, they have their seperate adventures and they come together at the end with lessons learnt about life and love. Throw in some overseas travel for good measure. It’s a format that has worked for the other books and worked well for this one too.

It’s an odd thing revisiting the literary friends of your youth and have them grow up without you. I am glad that Ann Brashares wrote a conclusion to the sisterhood’s story.

Rating: 

3 out of 5

Purchase book at:

Book Depository / Amazon FishPond