An unsuitable job for a woman by P. D. James – book review

Soon after dropping out of university, Mark Challender was found hanging from the ceiling, faint traces of lipstick on his lips. Pryde Agency is hired by his father, a renown scientist, to find out what led 365307.jpghim to suicide, however the private investigator, Cordelia Grey, finds the scent of murder. Her Agency partner agency killed himself, leaving her the business so it is up to Cordelia to undertake such’An unsuitable job for a woman’ and find the truth.

Cordelia Gray is by no means a formidable character, she doesn’t invite the reader to care for her a great deal, much like her interaction with the other characters. She is quite shy and unsure of herself, however, as the story progresses and she slowly find validation, her strength comes shining
through. The deeper she goes into this case, the more she discovers about herself, realising that in fact she is a very suitable woman for this job, drawing upon her skills and wit hqdefaultto discover the truth. This is the side of her that I admired, that against all odds and doubts, she gets the job done. Character interaction was a bit too stiff and bleak, giving the impression that characters did not give a damn about each other, nobody felt insulted or outraged.

 

The plot was ok, kept the reader curious as to what really happened almost until the end – red-herringI figured out the ‘Why dunnit’ and ‘Who dunnit’ soon after she discusses with Nanny Pilbeam. In fairness, I was not that impressed with the ‘Why’ and the ‘How’, but I did like the red herrings thrown about and how it all tied up nicely together. The writing style was excessively flowery, highlighting details that had no meaning or purpose for the story or its characters – more often than not skipped meaningless passages about the table cloth and furnishing arrangements.

Dislikes: 1. The time period when the novel took place was never mentioned and I assumed, due to the dated dialogue, that the events took place about 30 years earlier than it did!

2. The end – I didn’t like that Cordelia broke character for someone that she did not even like, or admire! Major faux pas! I did not like the ending at all and, try as I might, I could not find any justification or inclination as to why uDNqsKsshe did it.

3. I was also annoyed that after the truth is discovered, characters suddenly come forward to Cordelia to fill her in with details that she didn’t stand a chance of finding out otherwise! Really?! Facepalm!

Therefore, I am ….

comment-reply-015-not-impressed

 

 

 

PS: I do appreciate that the story was published in 1972, and it might have appealed more to the readers at the time, however I was born in ’89!

Therefore:

two-star-rating

 

The Harbringer Break by Zachary Adams

As I promised, I would read random  books that people would request for me to review and this is the first in a series to follow. I picked this book from a huge pile of emails and I was instantly  curious as I read the blurb and when I am curious that’s always a good thing. But things got better for me…

I would say that it is really the story of Pat Shane (Patches), a genius with a killer theory that the aliens that NASA discovered on Europa, Jupiter’s moon, are currently living among us and planning to take us down. The spies are among us, surveying us, spying on us for the most effective way of destroying us. Patches though, he wants to show them that we can fight back, that we are a force to be reckoned with and make them go away with each blood that’s shed to eradicate them for the good of humanity.

Or I could say it’s the story of Chris Summer, the newly promoted FBE agent (Federal Bureau of Eugenics) who’s role is to stop a highly delusional patient who killed his psychiatrist after escaping a secure facility. And he will stop at nothing to have Patches dead. Summers knows that the only way to stop him is to kill him, that there’s no way around it, for the sake of humanity.

But it’s not their story. Is the story of person next door and how can each of them deal with the consequences, ethics and problems of a silent alien extinction, when everybody could be one of them and faith of the whole planet is on each of them shoulders.

What I love about the book is that it’s not a story about them (aliens), it’s a story about us and the conflicts of a new world. A world who faces dangers coming from far away, from a far better prepared civilization. It’s the dilemma of the man put face to face with a situation which he has no exit but to act, one way or another. It’s the  blood, tears and sweat of those willing to die or kill for their country and a passion for survival. The Harbinger Break exposes the fears, beliefs and primal instincts of the human.

I also loved slow-minded Sam who proved to be such a driven charter, even if he had to cross paths with Shane in order to realise that he had the power to inflict change and be a hero. And then it’s the incredibly sexy Claire who has the most important men at her feet and others ready to kill for her. Claire who shared a track record with Sam and Patches at GenDec (Genetic Decontamination Centre) proves to be much more than meets the eye and this trio of forces is fatal since their existence is conditioned by the death of the other one in order to maintain the equilibrium of their lives.

I said it before and I will say it again: jumping from story to story and different point of views are not my thing since I don’t feel the story as I should. The Harbinger Break  changed that one for me. The writing is so well executed that I was constantly torn in my allegiance. Such a breathtaking story that I promise you that you’ll never forget. Zachary Adams is a master of the craft and I am honestly surprised to find such a gem.

I LOVED THE STORY! I loved it that much that I had to bloody use capital letters to write a sentence. Great story, amazing, vivid characters, good writing and tons of talent and a promising new writing coming into the scene to sweep me off my feet. I will keep my eyes on Zachary and hunt for his future books which I urge him to write with the same passion and dedication.

The book can be purchased on Amazon here: The Harbinger Break The Harbinger Break

Crimson Night (Night #1) by Marie Hall

Book Cover

This Carnivale Diabolique allows Pandora and her family to blend in and feed their inner demons. Nephilims, they are each possessed by a demon which has to be fed, but they are not all the way bad. Pandora hosts the demon of Lust and she enthrall men by transforming into their desires and feeding off of them.

But when Pandora lusts and tags a mysterious man, her life will take an unexpected turn when she realises she fell into the trap of a hunter, a Priest, reaper of Nephilim and she is his pray. They play a dangerous game around each other while other darker forces lurk around, threatening the balance of their worlds. She and her family are bound to the defenders of light to fight against darker creatures while maintaining the balance by feeding only on those who deserved it, acting as punisher.  She is sent on a mission to uncover a vampire lair and find whatever information she can, but there are dangers at every step and she can certainly be killed.

This is a dark and hot novel, filled with mystery, lust and red herrings. The world in which the novel takes place was well-built and I could actually visualise the places and have a good grasp on their factions and abilities and what they could and couldn’t do. The story takes off slowly, taking time to build up which for me is quite of a let-down, but I knew I was unto something that was actually good so I held my impatience.

Character wise, I thought they were a bit too flat for my liking. Pandora thinks constantly of sex because of her demon, but I feel like I actually don’t know her in other aspects. She tried to conserve as much of humanity as she can, but I have no idea of her goals and aspirations, is a bit too dull and erotically centred.  The Priest, Billy, is just a thorn in her back and we, again, know nothing about him as they don’t have a proper, serious conversation. We do know he is über hot and makes Dora wet constantly, that we know. The other characters suffer of the same problem, but I do remember Bubba with his weird appetite and The Gray Man, who we know nothing about, but he is the most fascinating character in the whole book and I want to know more of what he is.

The writer really tried to make them be the good guys by hooking them up with the good guys, but somehow felt a bit too forced. I can say that personally, I was in love with the idea of Vampires as bad guys! Finally a book in which they don’t sparkle and silly girls don’t go chasing after them in forests. Such a breath of fresh air! In this book they are truly evil and they are portrayed in such and un-cool way that I almost felt like hugging the writer.

The ending did justice to the book and left me begging for more. It all unravels so nicely and I was surprised that I couldn’t actually figure who was the actual foe in the whole story. The Gray Man appears again and opens a chest full of questions and intrigue and Pandora gets a new assignment and I have a feeling the thing will get hotter in the second book.

Marie Hall does a fairly good job overall and I must say that I was excited to finally find in my random reads such a pleasant read. The story is hot, sassy and packed with action and even if it has its faults, recovers on other fronts so I can truly recommend this book for lovers of the genre.

 

 

PS: You can follow Marie Hall on Twitter at: @mariehallwrites and follow her blog here!

Divergent (or the random acts of stupidity) – Veronica Roth

I remember the first time I found out about „Divergent” was just as I was exiting the cinema and this big, bad-ass poster caught my attention and I was immediately interested so I looked up for the book. I am a sucker for Dystopian novels and I looked forward to get home and get my hand on the book. The story had an interesting premise: in this futuristic world, sometime after “a Great War”, the people were separated into factions, according to their personalities, with strict rules: Abnegation, Erudites, Candor, Dauntless and Amity. They A9ym6mXCUAE-1Kvhave to choose who they shall be according to their personality and fall in one of the categories. The world  as they know it (which is just a city, really!) is enclosed in a high security fence guarded by the Dauntless to keep them safe (and of course they don’t wonder of what they have to be kept safe of). But 16 old Beatrice, born in an Abnegation faction discovers she is different, that she is what they call a Divergent, someone different that has to be eliminated by the system, a threat. She transfers to Dauntless where she reborn as Tris… or she should do so if not for her constant whining and lack of action.DivergentMemes_ReadBreatheRelax Tris is so boring, that most of the times I wanted to shove her over the railing and be done with! She is now a Dauntless, but besides having that super cool self-control, cannot act in any direction and she’s quite dumb. She is supposed to question the system, find what’s happening and become a fighter and a leader, instead of waiting for things to happen. She disappointed me immensely. When I bought Veronica’s Roth book I was looking for something gripping, enticing and new. I’ve read The hunger games and it’s impossible not to compare them, but I must say, that even if The hunger games wasn’t great, at least I was gripped into a story filled with action, not bored to death by a girl whose only interest is jump off trains and moan that she misses abnegation and proves herself by getting another tattoo. Plus that, Katniss had a kick-ass skill with that bow that even I find it hot! tumblr_n2gv86bPQi1qgl39lo1_250 The side characters are doomed from the beginning and there is no real evil character in this setting. We cannot count Eric just because he looks weirdly tattooed and pierced and has a smart, evil mouth. The other competitors in the “arena” are so boring and predictable that makes me poke my eyes out with a fork. I really tried to like Divergent, but I was halfway through the book and she was still wondering why she felt so weirdly hot around Four (Ha!), their mentor and awesomely-hot and rarely talking leader. Four, is her love interest, but there’s little love and even less interest as far as I was concerned. I’ve been shown more kissing and pillow talking in The hunger games than here. already named our children gifAnd of course that he is hot and drolly and if I wouldn’t know better, I’d say British too, but he’s not, because using too many clichés would make any reader puke their guts out. Instead, Veronica made him aloof, mysterious and he also does the Stare Game, just like in Twilight.

tumblr_mw9ye7sANu1s3m1mko1_250
This is Four!

*I swear to God, these people are falling in love only by staring at each other? * The story took way too much to develop into something that would hold my interest and finish reading the book, instead of abandoning it at 80% and watching the movie instead. It’s a pity because it could’ve been great, but it failed miserably. I know it’s YA, but that’s not an excuse for poor writing and miserable characters. DivergentMotto                    BUY BOOK HERE: Divergent (Divergent Trilogy, Book 1)

The shock of the fall – Nathan Filler

I’ll tell you what happened because it will be a good way to introduce my brother. His name’s Simon. I think you’re going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that.’

The story is written from the point of view of 19-years-old Matthew who recalls the tragic holiday when he was 9 years old when his older brother Simon died. He writes the story from a psychiatric ward where he is a patient. Very quickly he draws me into his loneliness, his mother’s insane behaviour and his drug addiction in the later years.

His voice is sincere and genuine, Nathan depicting the decay of a mind that cannot be healed, a mind that’s broken in schizophrenia. I am impressed with the way the plot was handled and even if I knew what happened, I wanted to know why and how. Brilliantly engaged with all the little stories and drawings that Matthew offered and unforgettable peripheral characters like his own mentally ill mother consumed by grief and suicidal thoughts, his friend Jack and Simon himself who’s always present in his hallucinations.

This is a story incredibly real and painful… a story of an innocent boy who cannot understand the death of his older brother.

I loved this book and you will love it too.

BUY HEREThe Shock of the Fall

The 2013 Nanowrimo Journey.

Nanowrimo. National November Writing Month, the contest in which everyone is a winner as long as you manage to write a 50000 word novel in a month. Your prize is the novel itself.

This year, again, I started the competition and… I didn’t finish it. Again. But there’s something that I wouldn’t have discovered unless going through this again and it’s all about the writing process. I’ve tried so many times to outline, plot, know all the answers, plan and it all went to waste, like this year again and the years before that, but, this year I found out my rhythm.

Writing is not easy, whomever says that, eats shit, I’m telling you that. It’s a painful process, you invest yourself in your characters, they become a part of you, you give them life and they drain that essence, they need it on order to survive on paper. Like any other young writer, I’ve been reading articles, books, essays on the craft, how to improve, how to write, plan, plot, outline and, as this November was passing by, my words on page not moving fast enough, I realised that none of it actually made sense to me.

I am a mess, a true mess and forcing order into chaos wasn’t taking me anywhere. So I cursed and let it be. The thick notebook I have for notes has only one page written in it, one page with random thoughts, ideas or just a word which only make sense to me. That’s it. One page. One page which sums my ideas for my novel, for the things I want to write and it works just fine for me. Sometimes I just draw on it, hearts and butterflies, sometimes I have brilliant ideas and I rush to go write them down so I wouldn’t forget; relying on memory is a stupid thing, experience is a good teacher.
Now I write almost everyday, less pressure, less beating myself up for not doing it in a “proper” way. I found myself and my way of doing stuff and even if it’s not perfect and makes me go back and re-write, this time my Characters are fully in charge, telling their story though my blood, not the other way around. With their freedom, I am free to write, happy every time I get the chance to put things on the page, even if it’s 100 words or a 1000.

I don’t care what others do any more, I just listen to the people inside my head, they know better than anyone!