A Hunger Like No Other by Kresley Cole

A Hunger Like No Other (Immortals After Dark, #2)

A Hunger Like No Other by Kresley Cole

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I didn’t like the first one, but since this one kept showing up in practically every list and ranking I use to find new books to read, I felt almost obligated to try it.
This one felt somewhat better than the previous one, but still 1.5 legs over the line of “too rapey”. Still too full of hatred and aggression. Too crude. Too preoccupied with material things and symbols of wealth and sex, with ‘sex and violence’ being all these books are really built on. Characters hardly talk to each other, mostly at each other. Everyone hates each other, everyone wants to kill everyone else, and then when they feel a fierce need to also have sex with each other for some ‘supernatural-biological’ reason, the ‘plot’ ensues.
At least I now have ‘tried’ these series and the author enough to have no regrets about parting our ways and not looking back.

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Blue Diablo by Ann Aguirre

Blue Diablo (Corine Solomon, #1)

Blue Diablo by Ann Aguirre

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It’s a skillfully written book, strongly above average, with some interesting concepts and characters, but it also felt…diluted. Or confused. Things are happening, but it also feels like nothing is. The beginning was definitely the better part of the book, while the end felt anticlimactic. To much of the set-ups seems to be aimed at the later books to come, so this book ended with very little actually resolved, which meant there was very little satisfaction from the reading experience overall.
There’s such thing as too many question marks.
Unfortunately, the worst part of this book is the protagonist. She is cowardly, manipulative, and too preoccupied with herself and deciding which one of the attractive men she should or shouldn’t ‘let herself get involved with’. She could be worse, I wouldn’t exactly put her together with the truly annoying female protagonists of paranormal romance I’ve seen before, but she’s still difficult to like.

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Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1)

Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Other than the very much less-than-tasteful cover design, this could very well be the perfect mix of urban fantasy, action, and romance.
The world setting is powerful and distinct, the characters are interesting, deep, and developed. Nevada is not just another ‘I know how to kick their asses myself’ urban fantasy heroine. She has family, she has head on her shoulders, she has heart. Rogan may on surface seem like another ‘super hot male with too much money and power and damaged past’, but a) he does it well; b) there is more to things he does and why.
Some aspects of the story and future developments do seem predictable, but I think the tone and the way it’s done more than makes up for it.

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American Witch by Thea Harrison

American Witch (American Witch, #1)

American Witch by Thea Harrison

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve wavered between 3 and 4 stars for a while, and I might still change my mind… While I did enjoy most of the story and characters, there is a couple of points that really bothered me:
1) The Russian.
Rasputin is just such a tired and overused figure, when I saw the name I practically groaned. Then there’s the language… It made me feel like watching those tv dramas that think their audience are too stupid to care if they use Chinese actors who can’t pronounce Japanese words to act as Japanese and have a ton of American actors speak some kind of mumbo-jumbo pretending to sound Russian or any other kid of Slavic language. Okay, none of the words used were actually wrong, but… It just felt unnatural. For example, replacing word ‘darling/honey’ where it would fit in English sentences with Russian version is just not enough. Would it fit there if the sentence was in Russian? Would it be used in such way at all? Would it be natural for a male who lived in pre-revolution Russia to use these specific words and in such way? I’m not an expert, but my language instincts tell me ‘no’. It just felt unnatural. It’s a huge pet peeve for me.
2) The treatment of the main male character that is getting very old and tired.
We get an enigmatic, whole, character who is attractive in his drive and independence. The whole reader-favorite ‘dark and dangerous’ package. But then as the book unfolds he slowly gets morphed and forced to fit some kid of ‘ideal image from a woman’s perspective’, until at the very end he only says and does things like ‘a woman’ would want him to (with all the ridiculous proposals and sitting quietly in the background). This made me a little angry. For one, not all women like and want same things. For another, it just feels fake, and the concept of the male character just giving up all that he was and had, and then making him fit into the life the female character just decided to choose for herself is unfair and tiring. I don’t like it and this story flow has been used a few too many times already.

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Bear Necessities by Dana Marie Bell

Bear Necessities (Halle Shifters #1)

Bear Necessities by Dana Marie Bell

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Could have been a decent enough urban fantasy plot-wise, with some solid setting and interesting characters, if not for a couple of issues:
– The porny porn is too porny and kind of out of place. I don’t know, it just didn’t seem to fit and made me want to skip most of it.
– The concepts are not really thought-through. For example, nothing about Tabby and her behavior makes the fact that she spent 8 years living as a wolf in nature and not communicating with others believable.
Also, somewhere between the issues 1 and 2 lets consider the fact that the girl who was supposed to be a lone wolf from age of 15 and had one a one-night stand in the six month after she returned to society, acts like a porn star. Where did she get all the experience? Before she was 15? This made the porny content even more cringy.
– Writing is mediocre and there was a ton of punctuation problems.

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