?

Log in

entries friends calendar profile Previous Previous
occasionalhope
Patricia Veryan, Logic Of the Heart – B
Joyce Ballou Gregorian, Castledown and The Great Wheel, her writing improved, B
Helen Morales, Pilgrimage To Dollywood, A
Rhys Bowen, The 12 clues of Christmas, not very believable but quite engaging, B
Harlan Coben, Home, solid and well plotted, writing a bit pedestrian, B+
Tami Hoag, The Bitter Season, very good, although the coincidences were a little unlikely, B+
Liz Nugent, Lying In Wait, very tightly plotted, B+
Belinda Bauer, The Shut Eye – a definite return to form, A
Jessica Knoll, Luckiest Girl Alive, slow to start but troubling and haunting, B+
Sylvia Izzo Hunter, Lady Of Magick – not quite as good as her first one, but still excellent, A-
Gillian McAllister, Everything But The Truth – very good, starts out like a psychological thriller, but turns into more of a psychological study, A-
Julia Quinn, Because Of Miss Bridgerton – slight but charming, A-
Eloisa James, My American Duchess – first half was delightful, although it would have worked better set a century later; second half had too many love scenes and not enough plot, B
Leave a comment
Angela Thirkell, Before Lunch – predictable but pleasant, B
Lissa Evans, Crooked Heart – quite enjoyed it, B
Susan Elizabeth Phillips, The Great Escape – problematic in places, but I really enjoyed it overall, A-
Jennifer Sey, Chalked Up – interesting autobiography of a gymnast, B+
M E Kerr, Is That You, Miss Blue – B-
Hesba Stretton, Carola – 19th century Parish Magazine type of story, B-
Ian Sansom, The Mobile Library: The Case Of The Missing Books – fell completely flat, D
N K Jemisin, The Kingdom Of Gods – very well written, just not engaging, C
Paula Hawkins, The Girl On The Train – pretty good thriller, B
Virginia Pye, Snow Bird – B
Peter James, Love You Dead – not altogether plausible but not bad, B
Salley Vickers, Cousins – pleasant enough, B
Simon Brett, The Strangling On The Stage – okay, B
Joyce Ballou Gregorian, The Broken Citadel – loved the world building with its echoes of the ancient Middle East and the plot was solid, but characterisation was limited and the writing a little stilted, B+
Leave a comment
Jo Beverley, The Viscount Needs A Wife - a bit flat (plus anachronistic names), very disappointing, C+
Libba Bray, A Great And Terrible Beauty – another disappointment, very inaccurate historically and not terribly well written, D
Carrie Vaughn, Kitty Steals The Show – very good, although some of the British parts were not quite right, B+
Simon Kernick, The Witness – excellent thriller, A
Virginia Pye, Half Term Holiday – lots of lovely WW2 period detail, B+
Patricia Cornwell, Chaos – ludicrously bad, D
Curtis Sittenfeld, Sisterland – so, so dull, C
Rhys Bowen, Royal Blood, B; Naughty In Nice, B+ - both rather silly, with awkward historical errors, but quite fun frothy reads
Lisa Unger, Ink And Bone – not bad thriller with supernatural edges, B
Jacques Steinberg, The Gatekeepers – excellent, well written study, A+
Georgette Heyer, The Toll Gate – reread, not one of her best, but pleasant enough, B
Katherine Woodfine, The Mystery Of The Jewelled Moth – not as good as the first one, but a pleasant read, B
Nick Page, And Now Let’s Move Into A Time Of Nonsense – critique of worship songs, A
Kelly Bowen, Duke Of My Heart – badly written rubbish, F
Holly Black, Black Heart – loved it, A+
Leave a comment
Jonathan Kellerman, Breakdown – one of his better books in recent years, B+
Charlaine Harris, Night Shift – I haven’t got into this series as much as I hoped, but it wasn’t bad, although I didn’t care for the ending, B
Ann Patchett, Run – just lovely, A+
Patricia Veryan, Sanguinet’s Crown – enjoyed it, A-
James S A Corey, Leviathan Wakes – some of the plot was interesting, but it plodded and lacked interesting characters, D
Belinda Bauer, The Beautiful Dead - disappointingly generic compared with her previous books, C
Lucy Foley, The Book Of Lost And Found - quite good, although some annoying inaccuracies eg titles, B+
Leigh Bardugo, Shadow And Bone - very good fantasy with Russian feel, A-
Diane Atkinson, The Criminal Conversation of Mrs Norton – a fascinating subject, but unfortunately not very well written, B-
Patricia Briggs, Dragon Bones – OK fantasy, B-
Rhys Bowen, Royal Flush – great fun, the best of this series so far, although not entirely historically accurate, B+
Charles Dickens, Oliver Twist – highly overrated, with a plot relying heavily on implausible coincidence, bland too-perfect protagonists, and sometimes turgid writing (apart from some powerful sections, eg Sikes’ flight, and some amusing moments), C
Ben Aaronovitch, The Hanging Tree – very good instalment, A-
Leave a comment
Carrie Vaughn, Kitty’s Big Trouble – not bad, B
Judith Herrin, Byzantium – very good history, A-
Patricia Veryan, Married Past Redemption, A-
Ed Balls, Speaking Out - interesting and occasionally funny autobiography, but I think it will date poorly, as he assumes throughout everyone knows the context and incidents he is talking about, and the non-chronological format won’t help, B
Mitchell Stevens, Creating A Class – interesting insight into US college admissions, B+
Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Heroes Are My Weakness – fabulous, her best in years, A+
Henry Cecil, Alibi For A Judge – quite amusing, B
Rhys Bowen, A Royal Pain – fun, A-
Laura Wilson, The Wrong Girl excellent - A; A Willing Victim, rather dull with spots of interest, C+
Lisa Tuttle, The Mysteries – excellent fantasy, A
Karen Perry, Girl Unknown - rather americanised view of Ireland, B-
Lois McMaster Bujold, Penric's Mission - A
Fiona Barton, The Widow, very good, B+
Naomi Novik, Uprooted - absolutely wonderful fairytale inspired fantasy which I adored, A+
Curtis Sittenfield, Eligible - quite fun adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, B+
C L Taylor, The Missing, quite good, B
Leave a comment
Erick Setiawan, Of Bees And Mist – modern fairy tale, quite good, B
Gene Brucker, Giovanni and Lusanna: Love and Marriage in Renaissance Florence – nice (if short) microhistory, A
Carrie Vaughn, Kitty Goes To War – good, but felt a bit like a placeholder, B
Den Patrick, The Boy With The Porcelain Blade – OK I suppose, but I didn’t feel invested at all, won’t be bothering with sequels, B-
Rhys Bowen, Her Royal Spyness – pleasant fluff, not historically accurate but quite charming, B+
Stephanie Johnson, Belief – I felt I should enjoy this, but it felt as though it was trying too hard to be beautifully written, and I was bored, C+
Jon Rosenberg, Pantheon Of The Dead, quite good, but it needed proofreading, B
Rachel Bach, Heaven's Queen, enjoyed it, A-
Harlan Coben, Fool Me Once, very good, A-
Matthew Hughes, Greeves and the Evening Star – short story in Old Venus anthology, quite amusing Wodehouse spoof, B-
Peter James, You Are Dead – one of his better efforts after a dip in form; possibly not the most plausible of plots, and it’s been a long time since leases for lives were a thing, but the funeral was beautifully done, B
Leave a comment
Gwendoline Courtney, The Grenville Garrison – has dated a fair bit, and the plot was fairly unbelievable, but I quite enjoyed it, B-
Patricia Veryan, Nanette – very charming but you can tell an American wrote it, B+; The Noblest Frailty, A
Sally Watson, Jade – lovely reread, A
Linwood Barclay, Far From True – boring, and ends with annoying cliffhanger; worse, this book proves he can’t differentiate his multiple narrators, D
Kathy Reichs, Speaking In Bones – I really wish she could learn to write full sentences as her writing style is increasingly annoying, D
Mary Beard, SPQR – excellent, A+
Tess Gerritsen, Playing With Fire: the historical sections were very good, the modern thriller parts unconvincing, B-
Isabella Bradford, A Reckless Desire – plodding, C
Jane Corry, My Husband’s Wife – complex but fascinating psych thriller, A
Sherwood Smith, Miss Eleanor Tilney – pleasant but slightly inconsequential Jane Austen fanfic, B
Holly Black, Red Glove – excellent, A
Diana Wynne Jones, The Islands Of Chaldea – wonderful, only the very end was not up to par, A+
Rachel Bach, Honour’s Knight – excellent SF again, A
Ace Atkins, The Redeemers – very good gritty Southern crime fiction, A
Return To Venusport, Allen M Steele – short story in anthology Old Venus, ed GRRM and Gardner Dozois – very enjoyable, A
Leave a comment
Fred M Donner, Muhammad And The Believers: At The Origins Of Islam – fascinating history, A
Angela Thirkell, The Brandons – pleasant but slight, B
A M Irvine, A Girl Of The Fourth – slightly silly in places, but I enjoyed it, A
Kyril Bonfiglioli, Don’t Point That Thing At Me – started as fairly amusing Lovejoyesque black comedy, but took a rather unpleasant turn, one I didn’t really like, C-
Elsie J Oxenham, The School Without A Name – quite good, B
Dallas Schulze, Together Always – nothing special, C
Helen Bailey, Running In Heels – slight but pleasant YA, B-
Patricia Bowne, Advice From Pigeons – boring, C
Sylvia Izzo Hunter, The Midnight Queen – absolutely wonderful AU hist-fantasy, A+
Claire Douglas, Local Girl Missing - very well plotted psychological thriller, B+
Rachel Bach, Fortune’s Pawn – excellent space opera, A
Leave a comment
Laura Kinsale, Flowers From The Storm – pretty good romance, B+
Wendy Moore, Wedlock: How Georgian Britain’s Worst Husband Met His Match – brilliant nonfiction/popular history, kid of the anti-romance, A+
Phyllis Bottome, The Mortal Storm – 1930s novel about the early impact of the Nazis, very good, A
Patricia Veryan, Love’s Duet – enchanting romance (despite a few anachronisms), A+
Julia Keller, Last Ragged Breath – excellent Appalachian crime novel, A
Zen Cho, Sorcerer To The Crown – I adored this historical fantasy, A+
Ann Leckie, Ancillary Mercy – solid final instalment of a SF series I quite liked but really wasn’t blown away by, B
Leave a comment
Laura Kinsale, Flowers From The Storm – pretty good romance, B+
Wendy Moore, Wedlock: How Georgian Britain’s Worst Husband Met His Match – brilliant nonfiction/popular history, kid of the antti-romance, A+
Phyllis Bottome, The Mortal Storm – 1930s novel about the early impact of the Nazis, very good, A
Patricia Veryan, Love’s Duet – enchanting romance (despite a few anachronisms), A+
Julia Keller, Last Ragged Breath – excellent Appalachian crime novel, A
Zen Cho, Sorcerer To The Crown – I adored this historical fantasy, A+
Ann Leckie, Ancillary Mercy – solid final instalment of a SF series I quite liked but really wasn’t blown away by, B
Leave a comment