One Minute Book Review: Wayward by Blake Crouch

Wayward

The Summary:

The second book in the Wayward Pines series, Ethan Burke is now the sheriff of the mysterious Wayward Pines. Wayward Pines seems to be like any other town, except without the possibility of leaving. No one knows how they got there. No one knows how to leave. Every bit of their lives are planned out for them by someone else, someone who decides where they work, what they do, who they marry. More importantly no one knows what lies beyond the town.

Except for Ethan Burke. He’s one of the few who knows what lies beyond the town. He knows the truth, and it’s his job to keep the citizens of his town safe from it. But can he really do that?

What I liked:

These books are just so good. Some people have said they don’t like the writing style, but I think for the pace of the story, it really works. The world that Crouch has created is frightening, and the twists he throws at us, while a little more predictable in this novel, still rather blew me out of the water. All in all an excellent book.

What I didn’t like:

Honestly, the only thing I don’t like is that you run through them so quick sometimes it’s hard to remember what they’re about. I had to work to jog my memory. However, that’s more of a personal problem, than a problem with the book itself.

Verdict:

I highly recommend this book! Especially if you like mysteries and thrillers.

One Minute Book Review: Wicked Charms by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton

Note: Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher, I have obtained a copy of this book to read in return for an honest review. 

   one minute book review-Wicked Charms by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton

The Summary:

Lizzy and Diesel are back, and this time in a pirate adventure! They are on the search for the Stone of Avarice, and this time Wulf isn’t their biggest obstacle. . . Can they find it in time, in spite of possible demons, greedy billionaires, and murder?

What I liked:

So after Wicked Business, I will admit, I was a little bit worried. Especially since I had made a personal commitment to reading this book by a certain time. But from page one I knew that the addition of Phoef Sutton had made a huge difference to this series. The writing was tighter, and more succinct. There wasn’t a huge exposition about what had come before – one of my very minor pet peeves about Ms. Evanovich’s Plum series – information was given as needed. Even better, the stakes were raised! There was actual danger involved, which I loved, and people were killed and hurt in the process. I know that seems to be a weird thing to be happy about, but these books are labeled as thrillers (ever notice that on Amazon, and even in library collections?), and to me there’s definitely some danger involved in a thriller. And finally, I was pleased that Lizzy was had emerged from wimp status, to someone who was a little more gutsy. She was definitely still a little unwilling to be involved in these adventures, but she didn’t just wait around for Diesel to save her, although he still did.

What I didn’t like:

Diesel was gone a lot in this book! I really missed him too. My only big problem with this book, and it’s been a problem I’ve had with almost all of the Evanovich books lately, was that it seemed to have a pacing problem. I’ve had a really hard time identifying what it was in the past, but I realized it with this book. The book seemed over, it had seemed to come to its natural conclusion about halfway through. But to fill up space, there seemed to be some bits smushed in the second half of the book, with a very tense ending. And while it’s not enough to make me quit reading, it does cause me this feeling of boredom, where I want to do anything but read the book. This is not bad enough that I would ding it, and usually the last few chapters move at a rapid pace, I’m just not sure that I appreciate this portion of the book like someone else maybe could. Especially not when I’m comparing it with something like One for the Money, which was pretty well written.

Verdict:

Another comfortable read churned out by the Evanovich “factory”, so if you’re looking for a nice, light, beach read, then this is a good choice.

Remember, if you’re wanting to get your hands on this book it is being released tomorrow, June 23, 2015! If you’re getting it at your local library, I would get on the hold list now, though, because you know it’s going to be looooooooooong!

One Minute Book Review: Wicked Business by Janet Evanovich

Note: You’ll notice this review is earlier than usual! That’s because thanks to Netgalley and the publisher I have managed to obtain a copy of Wicked Charms to read and review for you, and because that particular book has a release date of next Tuesday, I want to have Wicked Charms reviewed for you on Monday, the day before the set release date. However, this will not affect our usual book review date of Wednesdays, and you will still see your customary Wednesday book review. You’ll just have a little extra this week! And now, on to our book review. . . 


 

                                                                                                                   One Minute Book Review-Wicked Business by Janet Evanovich

The Summary:

Lizzy Tucker and Diesel are back! This time they’re looking for the Luxuria stone, the Lust stone of the stones that embody the seven deadly sins. And this time they’re facing not only Wulf and his bumbling minion Hatchet, but also the mysterious Anarchy, who are all after the same stone! Can Lizzy and Diesel find the stone first? Can they do it without acting on their own lust?

What I liked:

I always enjoy Carl, and I actually felt like there wasn’t enough Cat in this book! The clues to what they were looking for were well thought out, and the book had a National Treasure vibe I was digging.

What I didn’t like:

Oh boy. . . Okay, with as many books as Ms. Evanovich has written, I was bound to come across one I didn’t like very much, and I’m sorry to say that this was it. And it wasn’t the story, the story was what I expected. But there were inconsistencies and changes in the personality of some of the characters that just didn’t sit well with me. Diesel seemed. . . Unlike himself. He seemed grumpy, and short with Lizzy at times, very unlike who he has been in the past in the Plum books, and even the first book in this series. I didn’t find him very likeable, which was a big issue for me, since I’d always loved Diesel because he was so likable. There were inconsistencies as well, for some reason Diesel’s assistant Gwen was replaced by the idea that he had a revolving door for assistants. . . I preferred Gwen, the idea of the assistant that could get anything done for him. Also, Lizzy magically was able to bake cupcakes again (at the end of Wicked Appetite she seemed unable to bake a cupcake). Wulf was warmer and fuzzier. . . Hatchet was more subservient, even though the previous book had established that he had a big rebellious streak. And I just had such a hard time with the villains in this book. . . every time Ms. Evanovich made a villain feel somewhat menacing, she would pull back and make them look like a cartoon. I feel like there’s a fear Ms. Evanovich has with getting too serious and scary in her books, but I feel like her books would greatly benefit from that, the jokes would land a lot better.

But the worst part was. . . Lizzy Tucker came off looking like a wimp. The reason why Stephanie Plum works is because she in the instigator of her crazy romps. It’s her decision to go after so and so, and she always has this vision of being this big bad bounty hunter, so it winds up kind of funny when she doesn’t succeed. Lizzy Tucker, however, is a very passive character. She’s not being dragged off unwillingly. Diesel shows up, says let’s go, and she follows along like a puppy, gets kicked, falls down, and gets saved. She doesn’t seem to do anything of her own accord. And that feels really disappointing and like a let down to me.

Verdict:

If you’re kind of OCD when it comes to book series, then you’ll probably feel compelled to read this book. Would I honestly recommend it though? No.

One Minute Book Review: Wicked Appetite by Janet Evanovich

One Minute Book Review - Wicked Appetite by Janet Evanovich

The Summary:

Lizzy Tucker’s life is going along swimmingly until sexy and somewhat supernatural Diesel shows up. Suddenly she’s chasing after a stone that causes gluttonous tendencies, she’s adopting both a cat and a monkey, all while still baking killer cupcakes.

What I didn’t like:

So I changed our format around this week, because I wanted to talk about what I didn’t like before I talked about what I did like, because it kind of mattered. So I didn’t like that Stephanie Plum Lizzy Tucker was . . . well, she was indistinguishable from Stephanie Plum. I mean, honestly, I didn’t see too much of a difference, except Lizzy works in a bakery, and has a wannabe goth chick (maybe? I wasn’t sure of this) as her sidekick. Ms. Evanovich tried to get Carl (the monkey) to eat using a fork again (something that happened in a Between The Numbers Plum book), she had Carl flipping people off again, and I felt like Diesel and Wulf were somewhat similar to Morelli and Ranger, back at the beginning of the Plum series. In short, this was a rip off of the Plum series (minus Grandma and Stephanie’s parents, although Lizzy’s father did show up).

What I liked:

Here’s where the reverse in what I did and didn’t like matters. . . Despite the similarities to the Plum series. . . It was just what I was in the mood for. I was jonesing for a Stephanie Plum novel, and didn’t have one available, and saw that Wicked Charms was coming out, so decided that I would go ahead and read Wicked Appetite. And really enjoyed it. I was expecting the similarities, and was indeed looking forward to them, so I liked Carl’s antics, loved Cat, and Diesel was a comfortable character that I knew from the Plum In Between The Numbers books, so. . . It was good.

Look, the truth is, you’re not going to pick up a Janet Evanovich novel because you’re looking for a new and unique story to dive into. You’re picking it up because it’s the literary equivalent of comfort food. . . It’s predictable, and comfortable, and makes you feel good at the end of it.

Verdict:

I would recommend this to someone looking for a quick, comfortable read. I know that sometimes Ms. Evanovich’s books feel overly predictable, but I’m always going to recommend her books as a great comfort read, especially if you’re looking to finish something quickly.

One Minute Book Review: The Girl on the Train

One Minute Book Review-thegirlonthetrain

The Summary:

Rachel takes the same train every morning, and every morning she passes by the same couple, whom she has dubbed Jess and Jason. Then one morning she witnesses something shocking, and her world is turned upside down as she learns who Jess and Jason really are, and becomes intimately involved in their lives.

What I liked:

This was just a good read. Fast, compelling, with a mystery that was actually a mystery (although one that became predictable), and definitely a thriller. They keep comparing this book to Gone Girl, but I thought that the characters were more likable than the characters of Gone Girl. The characters in this book are definitely human, very definitely fallible, and act like I felt they should have, given their personalities.

What I didn’t like:

Sometimes the story dragged on a bit, but obviously not so much that I couldn’t continue reading. I, however, didn’t find too many criticisms I had of this book, although there were plenty on GoodReads. I felt, though, that considering the subject matter and the flaws that the characters had that it was very believable, so what you’re not going to like is going to be very subjective based on what you want from a story.

Verdict:

I thought it was solid read, so I would definitely recommend this book, unless you hate darker stories. But don’t judge it based on the comparison to Gone Girl, because other than sharing a gritty tone, it’s not very alike.

One Minute Book Review: Murder is Binding by Lorna Barnett

The Book Chick Blog|One Minute Book Review| Murder is Binding by Lorna Barrett

The Summary:

In a quaint New Hampshire town a small business owner is murdered.

What I liked:

Sigh. This is one of those rare times where I just could not find anything to redeem this for me. I mean really.

What I didn’t like:

I very rarely decide that I just can’t finish a book. But this book was one of those. It was annoying, and boring and stuffy. The main character was snooty, despite the fact that we were supposed to think otherwise. The writing was lackluster, and this mystery didn’t feel cozy, it just felt. . . stuck. It felt stuck in deep quicksand from which it couldn’t get itself out. But I was all ready to stick it out when a character was described as “retarded”, despite this book’s 2008 publishing date. It was at that time that I put the book down, a kinda “straw that broke the camel’s back” kind of deal.

Verdict:

This is not a book I would recommend. There are plenty of people who I’m sure would like it, but as someone who was brought into the world of mystery through the Queen of Mysteries herself, Agatha Christie, this just was not up to snuff. Not even a pale comparison.

One Minute Book Review: The Mephisto Club by Tess Gerritsen

mephistoclub

The Summary:

A grisly murder is found on Christmas day in Boston, and Detective Jane Rizzoli and Dr. Maura Isles are once again confronted by murder, and their nemesis, Joyce O’Donnell. Could it be connected to demons as the the members of The Mephisto Foundation would have them believe. Or is it just old fashioned, cold blooded, murder.

What I liked:

So in the time that I was on hiatus from the blog I discovered Tess Gerritsen, and I love every book she’s written in this series. I’m not a big lover of thrillers, but Tess Gerritsen’s books will grab you and not let you go until you’re done with them, and this book is no exception.

What I didn’t like:

Unlike some of her previous books, this book definitely moved a little slower than her previous books. However, it definitely did not lag in quality, like some other long series do, so I didn’t necessarily consider this a big drawback. It just made it possible to put down and cook dinner, or fold some clothes.

Verdict:

If you like thrillers, murder mysteries, or just a really great read then pick this book up. It won’t disappoint.