Rachel and Wick are doing all they can to survive in the Balcony Cliffs in this new dystopian earth. When scavenging on Mord’s giant body, Rachel finds Borne. As Rachel becomes maternal towards Borne and Wick becomes suspicious, their survival may start to crumble away. Will their safety be compromised or heightened with Borne in tow?

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One word to describe Borne is weird. It took me a lot longer than expected to read this book as I had to get my head around the world, the history, and Borne himself. The book starts off wondering what and who is Borne straight away. Throughout the book it’s a looming question over the action and excitement. The advanced bio-technology throughout the book was wonderfully described. I felt entranced by this desolate yet advanced society and how they had learnt to survive.

Balcony Cliffs reminded me a lot of a rabbit den, full of twists, turns and traps. When within it’s walls, there was a sense of home even through the clutter. Vandermeer perfectly writes about a dystopian world which feels real. Although it was highly outlandish, there was also an underlying feeling of a threat. It was as if there was always a possibility of walking round a corner into the arms of an enemy.

There’s multiple antagonists within Borne. There’s the company created Mord and then a shadowy figure called the Magician. These two also oppose one another. We learn about the Magician as the book progresses but I wish we had known a bit more about Mord. We only get small glimpses into the giant bears past and creation.

The only negative thing about Borne was that we spent a lot of time watching him grow up. Although this time hinted forward at future instances, it could have skipped ahead without too much confusion. It added to my read time as I kept putting it down. But overall it’s a good book which I would gladly read again to pick up on missed hints for future chapters.

I received Borne* by Jeff Vandermeer as an e-book from the publisher via Netgalley. This is an unbiased and honest review.

 

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For my Kindle First book I decided to pick up Song of Edmon by Adam Burch. Song of Edmon* is set in the fictional future on another planet called Tao. After many wars, genocides and destruction, the human race still lives with prejudice, violence and savagery. Then comes Edmon Leontes, a gentle boy of mixed race who resents his cruel father and the ways of the Nightsiders. Edmon must learn to fight to survive against his better judgment and his love of music.

Song of Edmon (Fracture World #1)

I was in such a book slump and it took me way too long to read Song of Edmon. So I do question whether it was me or the book? But then, if it was a great book maybe it would’ve pulled me out of the slump. Either way, Song of Edmon isn’t terrible, but it’s also not fantastic either. It’s a mere average kind of book.

One of the best things about the book was how many topics that are within it which can be discussed. There’s politics, racism, sexism and many more. The problem was that these topics were not discussed within the book.  I thought the Nightsiders Vs Daysiders racism would come into play with the political undertones of the story. But I was disappointed and it was really a underhanded way to make Edmon the underdog.

Another thing I disliked was that Edmon goes from being weak and the underdog to being way too overpowered. Plus, in this time, I don’t even think he developed that much as a character. Through childhood to adulthood, as he grows and learns to be a fighter, I never really routed for him. I was much more interested in other characters like Lavinia and Phaestion.

Plotwise I really enjoyed the premise. Although I do think there was too much filler getting to the end of the book. Basically, there’s a Combat similar to the Hunger Games, and we spend the whole book training for the Combat. And then when we reach the conclusion, there’s not enough book left.

I liked the brief history that we got throughout the book. Song of Edmon is set in a future where humans have left Earth and colonized different areas of the universe. Burch seemed to enjoy using a lot of myth and legends within the history and it worked well to build the worlds up.

Although the ending sets up for the next book, I can honestly say I’m not intrigued enough  to get it. Song of Edmon just wasn’t a book for me, and I just couldn’t get into it as much as some other people have.

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After years of exile, the Mireces are planning an invasion of Rilpor. Dom, the Calestar, has forseen the messenger of war coming from the borders. When Rillirin, an escaped Mireces slave shows up, the watchers, wolves and ranks of Rilpor must work together to survive to oncoming attacks. The immense battle between faiths in nearly a thousand years has started.

Godblind

The first thing I should point out is that I was not ready to read a big fantasy novel when I read this. I’ve been feeling really tired and I’m usually reading books that are a bit more easy going at the moment. Having to focus really isn’t what I’ve been looking for in my TBR. So Godblind was a bit of a struggle for me. Every time I put the book down I had to read back three pages or so to pick up what was happening.

Godblind throws you into a new world full of an extensive history. The names of people and places are all obscure. Some of the names are confusing as there’s similarities, but overall you do get the hang of who’s who by the end of the book. Stephen’s has built Rilpor and the surrounding areas up from nothing, which I think some details were slightly lacking. But as this is her debut book, I’m sure she will improve in the next installment.

Rillirin felt more important in the blurb than she actually was. At the start she kind of starts of the plot line, but after that I felt she didn’t do that much. She definitely didn’t do more than the other characters surrounding her, and she basically just slotted into the romance subplot.

The format is very similar to the A Song of Ice and Fire series. The point of view of each chapter switches to a different characters perspective. The characters are a mix of the good and bad characters, although they definitely lack being morally grey like ASOIAF’s characters do. Because it was marked so similar to ASOIAF but didn’t quite live up to it, I found it sabotaged Godblind for me.

I really enjoyed the plot. I can’t say much because spoilers, but there were some shocking betrayals that I didn’t see coming. There were a lot of battles throughout, with some political aspects too. (Again, similar to ASOIAF). Thankfully not too much romance, we focus mainly on the upcoming war and different friendships between characters.

The God’s aspect was really interesting as The Red Gods are trying to return to earth through the actions of their followers. Mireces faith was very dark and gruesome in some parts, and I loved seeing it contrast so much from the Rilporeans. Especially when Lanta and Gilda, the two priestesses, come together.

I received Godblind* by Anna Stephens as an e-book from the publisher via Netgalley. This is an unbiased and honest review.

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Time travel and pirates are two very interesting topics for a book. R.S. Williams has smashed them into one another to create The Collective. Jenny, an agent from The Collective, meets Tilly in the local university Library one day. Harvey, another agent also takes an interest in Tilly, and ends up kidnapping her through time. Jenny must find Tilly and bring her home, but they’ve ended up in a time full of Pirates.

The Collective

The Collective as an organisation was really interesting for me. It reminded me a lot of the film The Adjustment Bureau. It also brings up many questions, for example why must history stay in a specific timeline? Especially if some events are morally wrong?

I enjoyed Jenny and Tilly, the two main characters. They were both very strong and smart, also sometimes sassy. The friendship that built between them while they were stuck in the past was really interesting to read. You don’t often get a book that focuses on female friendships that seem real.

On the other hand, I disliked the characters of Joseph and Roger. I felt that they lacked depth and could have been explored more as characters. Next to Tilly, Jenny, and Harvey, it was even clearer that we didn’t really know these characters.

The villain is both charming yet evil. I enjoyed his interactions with the girls, his crew and his right hand as we got to see into his head a bit. One of the things I didn’t like about him was that I really didn’t get his motive. It’s a very commonly use motive for a villain but in this context I found it slightly strange as Jenny has a similar motive but isn’t lashing out at The Collective.

The Collective is a easy paced read. It has an exciting plot line. The era is a good one to use, because I rarely read pirate books so it kept my interest. Most of the characters were well written. Overall I really enjoyed it, I just thought it needed a couple of tweaks for the secondary characters.

A big thank you to R.S. Williams and Jenny from Neverland Blog Tours for sending me The Colllective* as an e-book. As always this is an honest and unbiased review.

 

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After a brutal murder, a child is at risk as a leak is within the department trying to protect her. Taylor, the child’s therapist, is the only one she’s started to open up to. But this leaves a target on her back too. Taylor came from California to find her real father, a man her mother had lied about for years. Will she get the happy ending she deserves?

Monster in the Closet (Romantic Suspense, #19; Baltimore, #5)

Monster in the Closet is part of Rose’s Baltimore series, but it works well as a standalone. I’m not even sure which characters are in Rose’s previous books. But we get a introduction to every character who meet either way. We’re also told how each of these characters are linked, sometimes aggressively so. I found some parts quite repetitive. We were told multiple times how two people know each other, and often we would be reminded of something that happened two chapters previously. This was quite irritating and it actually pulled me out of the book.

So many characters, I often forgot who was related to who. Even Taylor in the book had to write out a family tree during her research before moving to the stables. I felt maybe there were too many characters involved. Especially when some show up right at the end of the book. The main characters were written in depth, but some characters did seem to merge into one another in my head. The two cops for example, I just kept forgetting which one was which and which one had done X, Y and Z. I didn’t really feel attached to anyone in Clay and Taylor’s story line.

I enjoyed the murder case story line a lot more. Jazzie was such a brave and clever child and I really routed for her. Gage was a scary villain, and you really felt there was a threat from him. I loved how we got a lot of backstory and details through both Gage and Jazzie’s POV’s.

Too much romance for me, and a lot of unneeded sex scenes. From the synopsis I just thought this book was a thriller, but apparently it’s a romantic suspense. It definitely wasn’t what I expected, and I just didn’t enjoy the romantic sub plots at all (as usual). Although this book was good, I probably won’t be picking up any more of Rose’s books.

I received Monster in the Closet* by Karen Rose from the publisher via BookBridgr. This is an unbiased and honest review.

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