Friday, April 29, 2011

Magician by trade, bastard by disposition

Eagle Rising
David Devearaux

Genre: Crime thriller
Audience: mature, probably more male
Rating: 4/5

You can call him "Jack", it's not his name, but if you knew his name, he'd have to kill you. Jack works for a secret branch of the government - a branch that deals with the supernatural thread. Jack is a magician. But this is not your typical paranormal urban fantasy. This is a crime thriller with a touch of magic. Jack's latest challenge is to infiltrate a neo-nazi society - a society that are about to delve into dark magics. To do this, first he must befriend some of the least likeable people you might ever meet. Jack is a hard man, somewhere deeply buried within him is a conscience, but he is not afraid to do what has to be done to achieve his goals - whether it be killing someone, or worse...

Not for the faint of heart, and not for those of you that like to sink your teeth into a nice paranormal romance. This book is as far from romance as you can go. It's bleak, it's grim and it will make you cringe and maybe even think about stopping reading. But you won't. Because for all that you will grow to hate him, just a little, Jack's story is just too darned engrossing.

And here's my review in brief of its predecessor:

Hunter's Moon
"Jack" is a magician, working for the government. He's also not the sort of person you'd want as a friend - and even less as an enemy. He may not be proud of his methods, but he's prepared to do what it requires to complete his mission. This book is like a dark cousin to Jim Butcher, Jack lacks in morals and subtlety and the whole set-up is just more brutal and dark. From disturbing sex-scenes to even more disturbing inquisition tactics, this is not a tale for you paranormal romance readers!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Books in Brief

Aurora Teagarden Mysteries Omnibus 1-4
Charlaine Harris
Fun detective/mystery novels with some rather brutal moments. Aurora Teagarden is a diminutive librarian living in a small town, who finds herself involved - sometimes rather indirectly in varoius murders around town, and invariably gets involved.

Robin Hobb
A worthy follow-up to "Dragonkeeper", this instalment further develops the characters and advances the plot.

The Project
Brian Falkner
A fast-paced teenage action novel set in a small town in the US. Two boys uncover the most boring book in teh world, which hides a deadly secret amongst its droll prose and find themselves in a great deal of trouble.

Lauren Kate
Better than I had expected - but I wasn't expecting much. This is another paranormal romance aimed at teenages, but this time it is set in a school for children that are not-quite-right. Creepy and over-the-top weird, I found the school mostly unbelieavable, but interesting never-the-less. One gets the feeling from these sort of books that teenage girls are romantically inclined towards boys that seem to hate them, and are dark, mysterious and most of all - dangerous. The nice, sweet ones never get a look in.

Year of the Griffin
Diana Wynne Jones
A magical school book as written by the Diana Wynne Jones. Her stories are fun, fast-paced and filled with unexpected twists and turns. I re-read this slim novel to commemerate her passing on the 26th March from cancer.

Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
What a delight! This charming book is written as a series of letters between an English reporter, Juliet Ashton and a Guernsey Farmer, Dawsey Adams. What transpires is friendship, mystery and ... oh, just read it!