Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Dying Bites, D.D. Barant ****

Take Daybreakers and Fringe. Mix them together in a cross-dimensional blender, and add a smart-mouthed heroine. You'll have Dying Bites.

Sucked into a parallel universe, FBI profiler Jace Valchek's new boss, David Cassius (NSA boss, and millennia old vampire), tells her she has one option for a ticket home: track down a criminally insane human serial killer--who's murdering pires and weres. In this place, vampires (hemovores), werewolves (lycanthropes), and golems (Mineral Americans, is the PC term if you ask her new partner, Charlie Aleph) make up 99% of the population. Jace has a lot to process. And now she's now an endangered species, too.

Sometime around the 1300's, this world's history split off from our own. Over the centuries, the differences have increased. Were's run the Catholic Church, guns don't exist, Japanese Shintoism and African Sorcery are the two predominant belief systems on the planet, and magic is so common place that 'computer viruses' take on a whole new meaning.

"Charlie, how do you feel about scuba diving?"
"About the same way an anvil does."

The book is funny. Laugh out (embarrassingly) loud in public, funny. Jace has a smart mouth, and her partner, Charlie, can hold his own, too.

Dying Bites is told in first person present tense. I'm all for present tense. The Hunger Games, and Across The Universe? Extraordinary. For some reason, though, in this book I occasionally found it hard to follow. Not a huge problem, though. It's a really good, fun, story. I feel the urge to inform that this is NOT a PNR. I'm not sure why I assumed it was. The cover? The name? Huh. There's definitely sparks and a hinted future relationship, but it's not a huge deal, and just a small part of the story on a whole.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Archangel's Kiss (Guild Hunter #3), Nalini Singh

Title: Archangel's Kiss
Author: Nalini Singh (author website)
Release Date: February 2, 2010
Age Group: Adult
Genre: Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
My Rating: 1 star2 star3 star

From Amazon:
Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux wakes from a year-long coma to find that she has become an angel-and that her lover, the stunningly dangerous archangel Raphael, likes having her under his control. But almost immediately, Raphael must ready Elena for a flight to Beijing, to attend a ball thrown by the archangel Lijuan. Ancient and without conscience, Lijuan's power lies with the dead. And she has organized the most perfect and most vicious of welcomes for Elena...

The Good:
I love these books like I love junk food. They're fun and exactly what I expected, which (sometimes) is nice.
The world Singh's created is vivid and immersive, the characters flawed and entertaining. I'm enjoying how she consistently writes Raphael as not being human. He's softening towards Elena, but it's very clear he's not human, and that's always present in his interactions. It's nice that the romantic lead in a book about angels doesn't behave like a teenage girl.

I also love, and I'm finding this especially true in book 3 (Archangel's Consort), that Raphael and Elena fight for their relationship. They fight, yes, but they make up. They don't give each other the silent treatment, sulk, or allow sniping at each other.

I'm love The Seven, as well, and Elena's interactions with them. There's a rich side-cast of characters in these books. They're not all Elena's BFF's, but watching the relationships between everyone develop is a joy. Elena also has friends. Good friends. Real friends. Friends who she fights and sacrifices for. So nice for a female lead in this genre to have good, genuine, solid friendships, for a reason other than spin-off.
Also, that Elena isn't magically healed of her childhood's traumas or ghosts, is refreshing. She struggles with her past, and will continue to every day of her life. It's a part of her, but she's developing the strength to deal with it.

The Odd:
What bothers me with these books--and I feel the same way about the first book--is Singh keeps making these leaps of 'logic', from her characters' POVs, and doesn't explain it. I can kind of figure out why Raphael's not wanting to bone blondie (she's recovering from injury, still?), but things keep happening that leave me thinking, 'huh?'. The whole, 'you were trying to rape me! Waaaa!' from the first book, for instance. NO SENSE. It's not explained what actually happened till this book, which is strange...

The Also:
The covers the covers! The Australia versions of these covers are SO pretty. I'm tempted to buy the paperbacks, after already paying for the eBooks, just so I can have them on my shelf!

The Books:

  1. Angel's Blood
  2. Archangel's Kiss
  3. Archangel's Consort
  4. Archangel's Blade

Get It:

Archangel's Kiss at Booktopia
Archangel's Kiss at Amazon


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