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Books 29-33

Changes by Jim Butcher
Pages: 448

B&N Synopsis

The new novel in the #1 New York Times bestselling Dresden Files series. Long ago, Susan Rodriguez was Harry Dresden's lover-until she was attacked by his enemies, leaving her torn between her own humanity and the bloodlust of the vampiric Red Court. Susan then disappeared to South America, where she could fight both her savage gift and those who cursed her with it. Now Arianna Ortega, Duchess of the Red Court, has discovered a secret Susan has long kept, and she plans to use it-against Harry. To prevail this time, he may have no choice but to embrace the raging fury of his own untapped dark power. Because Harry's not fighting to save the world... He's fighting to save his child.

Another enjoyable adventure featuring my favorite adult wizard, Harry Dresden. This one was interesting because the series jumped forward in time - I'm still trying to figure out exactly how much. Things have changed, people have grown up and matured and Harry is a bit darker these days. All in all, it was a good read. I laughed a lot and the ending left me somewhat surprised.



Something From the Nightside by Simon Green
Pages: 240

B&N Synopsis
John Taylor is not a private detective per se, but he has a knack for finding lost things. That's why he's been hired to descend into the Nightside, an otherworldly realm in the center of London where fantasy and reality share renting space and the sun never shines.

For John Taylor, there's no place like home...

To be honest, I didn't really enjoy this book. While some aspects of it were interesting, it tried to cram too much into it and it felt like a watered-down Dresden novel.



Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Pages: 208

B&N Synopsis

Internationally acclaimed with more than 5 million copies in print, Fahrenheit 451 is Ray Bradbury's classic novel of censorship and defiance, as resonant today as it was when it was first published nearly 50 years ago.

Guy Montag was a fireman whose job it was to start fires...

The system was simple. Everyone understood it. Books were for burning ... along with the houses in which they were hidden.

Guy Montag enjoyed his job. He had been a fireman for ten years, and he had never questioned the pleasure of the midnight runs nor the joy of watching pages consumed by flames... never questioned anything until he met a seventeen-year-old girl who told him of a past when people were not afraid.

Then he met a professor who told him of a future in which people could think... and Guy Montag suddenly realized what he had to do!

I’m pretty sure I read this in high school, but it’s been a while and at the urging of sarita29 , I decided to give it a go. I found it thought provoking and eerily-applicable to today’s society – one that is obsessed with reality television and condensed information readily accessed 24 hours a day and literary insight dispersed in brief statements – hello, Twitter?

I’m glad I went back and read it as an adult so that I could evaluate it against my own experiences.


Soulless by Gail Carriger

Pages: 384

 

B&N Synopsis

Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations. First, she has no soul. Second, she's a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.

 

Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire -- and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate.

With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London's high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?

 

SOULLESS is a comedy of manners set in Victorian London: full of werewolves, vampires, dirigibles, and tea-drinking.

 

This is my second time reading Soulless, and it was just as fantastic as the first. Although Changeless is my favorite of the series, this one comes in second. Getting to meet Alexia and all the characters is just plain fun! I’ve never seen a more outrageous vampire than Lord Akeldama, but you can’t help but love him. He’s so sincere in his affection and loyalty to Alexia, and I’d say, next to Ivy Hisselpenny, he’s her truest friend.


Lord Maccon is simply growly and it’s wonderful! And is it insane that whenever I picture Professor Lyall, I never see him as the man, but rather as werewolf. Yep – I picture a tawny wolf, standing upright in full Victorian garb.

 

What is wrong with me? J

 

 

The Good Thief by Hannah Tinti

Pages: 368

 

B&N Synopsis

Richly imagined and gothically spooky, The Good Thief introduces one of the most appealing young heroes in contemporary fiction and ratifies Hannah Tinti as one of our most exciting talents writing today.

 

Twelve year-old Ren is missing his left hand. How it was lost is a mystery that Ren has been trying to solve for his entire life, as well as who his parents are, and why he was abandoned as an infant at Saint Anthony’s Orphanage for boys. When a young man named Benjamin Nab appears, claiming to be Ren’s long-lost brother, his convincing tale of how Ren lost his hand persuades the monks at the orphanage to release the boy and to give Ren some hope. But is Benjamin really who he says he is? As Ren is introduced to a life of hardscrabble adventure filled with outrageous scam artists, grave robbers, and petty thieves, he begins to suspect that Benjamin not only holds the key to his future, but to his past as well….

 

Excellent book! Set in New England in an indeterminate year – but early colonial – this book was both whimsical and sad. Ren is an interesting character, as well as Benjamin Nab. There’s a lot of Charles Dicken’s influence a la Oliver Twist, but Tinti doesn’t seem like she’s copying his style. Instead, she allows his delightful influence to infuse her own voice. It’s a formula that works well. Although there are several moments when the book takes a serious note, the lighthearted chapters make it an enjoyable read that leaves the reader quickly turning the pages for more. So many interesting characters pop up through the book, and Benjamin Nab is one of the more loveable con artists of modern literature. I highly recommend it, and I put this one up on my account at paperbackswamp.com.

Books completed: 33/50
Pages completed: 8,163/15,000


Tags: fantasy, literature, steampunk
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