Storm’s Heart by Thea Harrison

Storm's Heart (Elder Races #2)

Storm’s Heart by Thea Harrison

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

There is this something about Thea Harrison’s characters and style of writing…when, even if usually I would’ve found this ‘teeny-tiny girly woman that likes pink lipstick and stiletto heels’ and ‘very big and very scary power man’ pair of main characters too cheesy and stereotypical, there’s something about the insight into them and their interactions that makes me ignore the voice of cynicism and actually enjoy the story.
I did feel a little put off at first at how much sexual undertone there was in this, in descriptions on both sides from the very beginning. But the plot was also there and not actually lost behind it. I have a feeling the first book was tamer, with more focus on fantasy setting, but I might be not remembering correctly. Also, the floating POV…
This is very much a female ‘comfort book’ through and through. Tricks was about to leave the safety of her found family out of necessity and begin a new life all alone surrounded by people she couldn’t trust, and this is about having a person who not only came to save her from danger, but decided to stay forever and trade a whole old life for a new one with her, and take it all in a stride. I might not understand high heels and lipstick, but I understand ‘tell me when are you going to leave me, because I need to know what will happen’ and the dream of someone saying ‘never’ and meaning it. And also actually enjoying it.

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Heart on Fire by Amanda Bouchet

Heart on Fire (Kingmaker Chronicles, #3)

Heart on Fire by Amanda Bouchet

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I can’t. My love for the first book just couldn’t win over all this angst. The repeated over and over soul-crushing conversations of fate and greater good. The pain, the losses, the manipulation, the sacrifices. Where did the humor and the fantasy of the beginning go? I definitely liked the ‘in denial and running away Cat’ much better the ‘the Queen Catalia’, and when the bigger picture was not in the picture. This book begins with a blow, drags on through all kinds of pain and doubts with hardly any reprieve and then ends in an entirely anticlimactic way with the weight of all that happened still on everyone’s shoulders.
I mostly feel sad that this series lost so many good things and went in this direction…and so betrayed I might cry.
If we don’t get a lighter ‘do over’ in some time in future and if Kato doesn’t come back, I believe I’ll have to forget about the existence of books 2 and 3 and just re-read the first one on its own from time to time.

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Breath of Fire by Amanda Bouchet

Breath of Fire (Kingmaker Chronicles, #2)

Breath of Fire by Amanda Bouchet

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While I thought I love this series too much to give it less than 5 stars (or more like I love the 1st book and the characters so much I decided I must love the series), I do feel like this book was sometimes difficult to get through… (and then I read the 3rd one right after this, got my hope got snuffed out entirely). It’s really disappointing that so many authors decide that sequels must always be twice as angsty and, as a result, lose more than half of the good things that were going on in the first book. I still love a lot of things about this book, but I just couldn’t enjoy it as much as the first one because of all the heavy emotional events. Also, a number of rape-y events that did not sit with me (especially the Kato one). And the fact that the Beta Team kept drawing short strings for angsty developments.
It’s still a very well-written, imaginative, and engaging story. Just…, compared to the first book, not nearly enough fun and a tad too heavy on negative emotions to be as enjoyable or leave a good aftertaste.

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I think you need a certain amount of courage to drink something named “Yellow Snow”…

(I bought it because you also need a certain amount of courage to name your drink so. I couldn’t help it.

…it’s actually not bad.

…but made me feel like I was being pranked anyway.)

Ever been so deep in your head you stepped into a huge puddle of vomit on the floor and stood around there for a while?

In my defense, it was in the middle of convenience store in Japan where you’re not supposed to expect mess. (This is going to sound bad, but figures it had to happen in the immigration office.)

But I did stand around in it for a bit while choosing drinks and only noticed because my feet started to slip around.

I have a feeling this day will go into the ‘those embarrassing things I did I wish I could forget but remember better than my name’ memory bank.

At least I didn’t fall in it.