Book Review: The Macabre Masterpiece: Poems of Horror and Gore

Title: The Macabre Masterpiece: Poems of Horror and Gore
Author:  Justin Bienvenue
Rating: 2/5

Summary:  Have you ever wanted a tour of the infamous underground we know as Hell? To experience different angles of blood? To meet some of horrors most morbid and fearsome creatures? Or maybe you wish to get totally creeped out and be left in utter shock and suspense to the point where your heart is beating so fast but you can’t get enough!?

Review: Okay, I like poetry.  God knows I write enough of it, have written dozens of passages, large and small, but never had the urge to publish them (though that is changing).  However, the genre of horror poetry is something that intrigued me so I decided to give Justin Bienvenue’s book a chance. However, what awaited me in those pages, within those fifty in-depth poems was something that made my skin crawl worse than the horror themes that filled them.  One of my biggest issues with poetry is rhyming, not that I am completely against it, I just simply am not a fan of poems that rhyme each and every line.

If I wanted constant rhyming I would go read Dr. Seuss or something out of Mother Goose’s stories.  That does not mean that this is a bad book, in fact, once I forced myself to get beyond the every line must rhyme thing, I did enjoy some of the imagery that he created in the poems.  I did think some of them were a bit redundant, having four poems concerning the river of blood or vampires was a tad much when there was more that could be done with each of these categories in my opinion without the redundancies.

I think my favorite chapter was the last one where things took a slightly more unsettling turn in so far as things went from being physical representations of horror to being a bit more psychological.  From the Thirteen Stairs to the Inhibitors of Doom these, despite the rhyming had me sucked in because I love mess with your head imagery truth be told.

Is this something I would read again, probably not on the whole no, but I would definitely read bits and pieces of it, those that caught my attention more than others.  I wish I could give it a higher rating than I did, but unfortunately the above issues kinda prohibit me from doing that.  Very well done for a first publication and I look forward to seeing more of your work, perhaps with a little less rhyming.

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Book Review: Dreamfever by Karen Marie Moning

Title: Dreamfever
Author: Karen Marie Moning
Rating: 5/5

Summary: The walls between human and Fae worlds have come crashing down. As Mac fights for survival on Dublin’s battle-scarred streets, she will embark on the darkest-and most erotically charged-adventure of her life.

Review: After I read this fourth book in the Fever series I had three words running rampant in my head for several days before I could fully process what I had just read, those words were OH MY GOD! – circling round and round and round my head. I was floored by this one, and at the end of the third I knew something like it was going to happen, but I did not expect it to be this temperature spiking!

Mister Jericho Barrons can pretty much call me whatever the hell he wants to call me after this wonderful installment to the series. If you thought that this man was naughty in the first three books, I must inform you that you have not seen anything yet. Mister Jericho Barrons needs a spanking for all that naughtiness and I know several individuals that will agree with me on this (though truth be told I wouldn’t mind him spanking me instead – wait, I think I just said that out loud…oops!).

I do however, have a favorite scene. It is an argument that is so simple, and yet so perfectly describes the relationship between Mac and Barrons:

He shakes me. “Say my name.”
“No.”
“Damn it, would you just cooperate.”
“I do not know that word, ‘cooperate’.”
“Obviously,” he growls.
“I think you make up words.”
“I do not make up words.”
“Do, too.”
“Do not.”
“Too.”
“Not.”
I laugh.
“Woman, you make me crazed,” he mutters.

See, perfectly yet intensely complicated. This book is far from over the top, and there is plenty of build up before anything even remotely sexual happens, and even then there are unnamed extenuating circumstances that bring about the explosive release to the sexual tension.

Barrons is HOT! Dear god that man sets my blood to boil and I want to let him do dirty things to me (much like I would let Christian Grey do whatever the hell he wanted to me), and I disliked him being gone for so long, but I understood that it was at some point necessary for it to happen. This series is fast paced and not one to beat around the bush for the most part, and I am more often than not hanging on every word and waiting to find out what happens next, and then I get to the ending and for the second time I am like WHAT IN THE EFFING HELL?!

I have not yet gotten my hands on Shadowfever which is the fifth and final book in the series, and of course I will have the same dread about going into it that I do every other final book in a series, but I will know that things are going to hopefully work out in the end! They HAVE to work out in the end or I am going to lose my grip on sanity and it will be entirely KMM’s fault.

If you have any questions, comments or recommendations you can contact me at simplicity.kindreth@gmail.com
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Book Review: Wilde’s Fire by Krystal Wade

Title: Wilde’s Fire
Author: Krystal Wade
Rating: 5/5

I would like to thank Curiosity Quills press for allowing me a copy of this book to review for free via netgalley.com.  It has been a pleasure.

Book Blurb: Katriona Wilde has never wondered what it would feel like to have everything she’s ever known and loved ripped away, but she is about to find out. When she inadvertently leads her sister and best friend through a portal into a world she’s dreamed of for six years, she finds herself faced with more than just the frightening creatures in front of her. Kate’s forced to accept a new truth: her entire life has been a lie, and those closest to her have betrayed her. What’s worse, she has no control over her new future, and it’s full of magic and horrors from which nightmares are made. Will Kate discover and learn to control who she really is in time to save the ones she loves, or will all be lost?

Review: Katriona “Kat” Wilde returns from her first year away at college, attending Virginia Tech.  It is Memorial Day weekend, and she, her sister and best friend Brad are going camping in the mountains just like they do every year.  However, there is a slight change in plans when her parents do not come.  This leads to the world as Kat, Brad and her sister Brit know it, shattering and splintering into something filled with sinister darkness.

Everything Kat has known turns out to be a lie, turns out to be tainted with the Darkness that has already destroyed all but a few thousand individuals in the world of Encardia.  Amongst the survivors are Flanna, her cousin Arland Maher (who Kat knows quite a bit of intimate detail of), and others who are under the leadership of Arland.

The Darkness, controlled by Dughbal, a fallen god, stripped of his immortality is consuming all in its path and Dughbal wants the magic, the ‘light’ within Katriona.  However, Kat is the center of a prophecy given by a powerful Seer before she was born, she is the one that Encardia is waiting for, the one that will shatter the darkness and bring the light back to a land cast in shadows.  She has been stripped of all she has, all she loves and now must forge her way along this path.  Will she truly be the one that brings light to Encardia?  What else will she lose along her journey? How many loved ones will she lose in the war against Dughbal and the darkness?

This book made me want to throw things.  Lots of things.  I barely managed to restrain myself from throwing my Kindle across the room when I got to the cliffhanger ending.  I am not normally a fan of cliffhangers, but this one has me eagerly waiting for more.  Krystal Wade has crafted a world of such depth and wonderment that I am sucked in entirely.  I want to know more of Encardia, I want to see the world thrive as it had before Kat’s birth, before the war and the darkness stole the sunlight.  I want to see the world that Arland remembers, and I want to see the world of Encardia after the darkness has been beaten, as the light returns to a world that had been thrown into perpetual shadow for longer than anyone can remember.

Thank you Mrs. Wade for gifting us with this fantastical world where there is magic and fairytale romance and struggles of love and friendship and family.  I look forward to the next installment of Darkness Falls.
If you have any questions, comments or recommendations you can contact me at simplicity.kindreth@gmail.com
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Book Review: Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

This is the first book by Cassandra Clare that I have read, never mind that I have had City of Bones sitting on my bookshelf for nearly two months now, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  The reader selected for this particular audio book was decent enough, and at times I wanted to strangle her, but I still kept up with the story, kept up with what was going on and delighted in the interactions.  I like both Jem and Will for different reasons, despite the fact that Jem has the drug addiction, and that makes me sad.

Jessamine, I want to smack just as much as I like (well like perhaps may not be the right word, tolerate is perhaps better) because I cannot bring myself to hate her.  She was hilarious in the beginning of the book, and I also adored Henry and Charlotte, they are quite adorable.  I am looking forward to reading more about them hwen I start reading the second book.  Also, I’m not entirely certain on the fact that Tessa is a warlock, she is something different, something that has not yet been encountered before, and that is not a bad thing.

The ending…seriously, made me want to pull my hair out and throttle someone.  What in the hell was the problem that drove Will to ask Magnus about something…I want to find out, I need to find out darn it.  There were parts in the novel that were slow going for me and at certain points I had to go back and relisten to things because I didn’t entirely understand what was going on.  However, it was decidedly a good start to the series, and I am going to be starting book too fairly soon now that I have it from the library.

Book Review: Boy with the Cuckoo-Clock Heart by Mathias Malzieu

Some of my favorite things in this book: hurricane in a skirt (Miss Acacia), the pet hamster (whose name is Cunnilingus),  bottled tears (yes, tears), and a delightful cameo by England’s very own serial killer Jack the Ripper.  There is very little NOT to love of concerning this book by Mathias Malzieu.  I read a translation of it, because my French is not the best any more.

In this book, Jack, the boy with the cuckoo-clock heart, is now dependent upon the clock installed in his chest, keeping him alive.  His heart is fragile, and too many strong emotions will weaken and ultimately break his fragile heart.  Love and anger are the chief of these that will destroy the fragile mechanical device that keeps him alive.  Yet, despite the pleas of the woman who installed the mechanical heart, Jack travels from Edinburgh to Andalusia in search of Miss Acacia.

Gorgeous and grotesque, this book is filled with delightfully lush, fruity, and sugar-adorned images tend to leave one hungering for more of his pretty words.  The adoration that Jack has for Miss Acacia is something right out of your favorite fairy-tale, it is so perfect, and almost in that regard uninteresting, however this fact is made up for by the motley crew of supporting characters make up for it.

The twinkling 19th century Andalusian circus, the laboratories filled with tiny bottles, the ghost train decorated with bones freshly pulled from the catacombs are all things that I adored experiencing with Jack on his journeys.

This book is definitely right up the alley of Tim Burton fans with its mixture of frightening and romantic imagery.   Definitely a good read.

Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

This is the first book that I’ve read written by John Green and I do not think that it will be the last.  This book is absolutely amongst my favorites and it is by far a tear jerker, but it isn’t your average cancer book, because cancer books suck.

I love the story within a story, the friendship between Isaac, Hazel Grace and Augustus Waters.  All three have some various type of cancer: Isaac’s is in his eyes, Hazel Grace has stage IV thyroid cancer (with masses in her lungs), and Augustus Waters has Osteosarcoma and has already lost a leg.  They meet through a support group, and there is friendship and true love that is formed in this rag-tag trio of cancer survivors.

Isaac got a piece of my heart because his heart was broken, because no one wants to break up with someone when they become even more disabled than they already were to begin with – thanks to the cancer.

Augustus Waters, got a huge place in my heart for his razor sharp wit and his undeniable charm.  He is the guy you simply have to love because he just is. Romantic at heart, I love the fact that he uses his wish to benefit Hazel Grace, taking her to Amsterdam to meet the author of her favorite book An Imperial Affliction, which ends abruptly and she wants to know why, and know what happens to the characters within the book.

Hazel Grace, not your average cancer kid, she’s smart, honest, tough chick, and I adore her.  Her personality is absolutely catching (well, it is after she meets Augustus Waters and goes from being Hazel to Hazel Grace).  The way she interacts with the world, is not something you’d expect given her situation, constantly on oxygen, and her body essentially turning against her at every turn.

The ups and downs of life of children with cancer is given a unique view, because it is told from those children who are living it, surviving it, or ultimately succumbing to it.  To say that I made it through this book without crying would be a lie, I sobbed at several points through this book, I laughed at several points through this book, and truth be told, I cursed at the author of An Imperial Affliction (whose name escapes me at the moment), however, these are characters that will stick with me for quite some time.  Not your average young adult romance or your average cancer book, and these are not normal teenagers, not normal children at all.  They are a far cry from normal and their biggest worries are not which celebrities are getting together with who, or what outfit they will be wearing to school to attract the attention of the cute member of the opposite sex – instead they are worrying if they will live to see another birthday, if things will continue to go up hill, or if they will suddenly be tumbling headlong in to areas where medicines no longer work.

By far one of my favorite books of this year, and I will be reading more John Green in the future.

Book Review: Spells by Aprilynne Pike

Okay, so I’ve read Wings, the first in this series, and fell in love with it. So, now that the second book has come out, I was all for it, continuing to learn about the fae realm that has been set up with Laurel, David and Tamani (why by the way is becoming one of my favorite love triangles ever). I love the fact that we get a bigger and better glimpse of the world of Avalon, and the way that the different faeries live their daily lives. The caste system set up by the different seasons of faeries is unique, and definitely something akin to the medieval structure of things almost.

Each faerie has a job to do and a task to accomplish, and there are formal customs for things and more often than not Laurel gets picked on to a point at Avalon Academy because she, a Fall Faerie, and Tamani, a Spring Faerie are friends and do things together. Laurel is supposed to take the lead in all things because she is the higher ranking faerie, but she doesn’t exactly know what to do, not does she actually care about the differences because Tamani is a friend.

I think, one of my favorites is the struggles between Laurel and her mother, because it is something real. There is a time when everyone goes through that phase where their parents don’t agree, don’t condone their behavior, or things of that nature. It is especially common in LGBT families, where individuals who come out of the closet are looked at and treated differently by members of their own family, but this review is not turning into an LGBT rant, I am just using it as an example, don’t get your knickers in a twist please and thank you. I love the fact that her mother finally, finally accepted and came around and stopped treating Laurel like she was something foreign, alien, and began showing her affection once more without the stiff indifference that had been there before.

All in all, I cannot wait to get my hands on the next book in this series, and see what bigger thing is going on in the world and really, WHAT exactly is going on between Tamani and Shar…that ending made me go WTF and stare at that last page for a good ten minutes trying to figure it out.

All in all, well worth the five star rating, and definitely a series I would recommend.

Book Review: The Help by Kathryn Stockett

The Help by Kathryn Stockett is a coming of age novel about a black maid during the civil rights movement in Mississippi in the 1960s.  The relationship between black and white is a complex spectrum of hate, abuse, mistrust, as well as love, attachment and dependence. I love the Howell Raines quote that Stockett includes in her personal excerpt at the end of the novel:

There is no trickier subject for a writer from the South than that of affection between a black person and a white one in the unequal world of segregation. For the dishonesty upon which a society is founded makes every emotion suspect, makes it impossible to know whether what flowed between two people was honest feeling or pity or pragmatism.

 

This in the expanse of words provides an eloquent way to describe Stockett’s intentions of this novel, while a lot of the reviews will more than likely focus on the racial aspects of this book , one of the most haunting things is pointed out by the statements that discuss the fact that while you are paying someone to care for you, and their livelihood is now dependent upon ensuring that you are happy, can you really expect the relationship to be an honest one?

I was born twenty years after the civil rights movement, and while I did grow up in the south, I did not have maids or things of that nature because I was a member of the poor or middle-class throughout my childhood, but the racial mindset of the South is still somewhat cemented in this hatred for the difference between blacks and whites.

 

This story is very strong and very touching and well written.  I love the fact that the style complements the plot, it makes for a fantastic read.  The grammatically incorrect pose is something that makes the novel all the more real, all the more honest in its delivery.  A white woman secretly compiling true accounts of the black maids of the well-to do households in Mississippi.  The good and the bad, Skeeter in her novel tries to portray the fact that people are just people no matter the color of their skin, no matter what “color” God has graced them with.

 

This novel was very well written, and I would recommend reading it.  It may take a bit of time to get into, but it is well worth the read and I think that the message is very important.

 

Happy Reading!

Book Review: The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa

<i>The Iron Daughter</i> by Julie Kagawa, is the second book in the Iron Fae series, and has quickly rocketed up to my top twenty books.  I did not know what to think going into this sequal, because so many have been horrid, but this book was fantastic, much like the first book in the series.  I am glad that I have found this series with all of them out already, because otherwise I think I would go absolutely nutty if I had to wait to finish reading it, right now the only wait I have is on getting it from the library to my Kindle.

 

This story picks up after Ethan, Meghan Chase’s younger brother has been returned home and she fulfilled her bargain with Prince Ash, and returned with him to Tir Na Nog, the realm of the Unseelie winter court ruled by Queen Mab.  The half-human daughter of Oberon is once again faced by the challenges brought about by the existence of the iron fae, who seek to destroy the oldblooded fae, do away with the Seelie and Unseelie alike.   However, when the Scepter of Seasons is stolen shortly after it arrives in the court of the Unseelie, delivered by King Oberon himself (a rarity to be certain), war is waged between the two seasons.

 

However, the traitor lies amongst the most trusted and adored of Mab, not telling who.  The iron fae want this war, to weaken and descemate the oldblood and to come in and raze what is left of them, destroying them and having all of the Nevernever to turn into their own technologic domain.  It is once again up to Meghan, Puck and Ash as well as a few other familiar faces from <i>The Iron King</i> to once again save the day.  I have fallen in love all the more with this particular storyline, the hardships faced by the three, the love triangle has me frustrated beyond belief and everything about it makes me happy and aggravated all at the same time.
The end, I hate to say it, I needed some tissues because for a moment I thought I was seriously going to cry, there were sniffles and I shed a tear or two, but I am pleased with the decision made to a point, because it still leaves me wondering the what could have been if the decision had been made the opposite direction also,  it makes me wonder what will happen in the third book (which I will be reading soon).

 

Til next time…

 

Happy reading.

Book Review: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

Minor spoiler alert, but not really XD

The Iron King by Julie Kagawa, published by Harlequin Teen is by far one of my favorite fae series to-date. I decided to read this series after hearing so many rave reviews about it, and upon reading the first few pages I instantly fell in love with the characters. The combination of the Midsummer’s Night Dream mythos with elements from Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan, the distinct worlds of the Seelie and Unseelie (Summer and Winter) is fantastic, but what truly blew my mind about this series is the birth of the Iron Fae.

Kagawa (whose name I absolutely adore saying and typing!) has outdone herself in the creation of the Iron Fae mythos. Having them essentially be a creation of human’s dependence and infatuation with all things technological it only seems to provide a plethora of ideas to create this new type of creature, that could be harmful to the oldblood of the traditional faerie mythos.

To rescue her brother, Ethan, Meghan Chase is thrown into a world she was never supposed to know. Nevernever is a terrifyingly beautiful place full of all things faerie and scary. Her best friend has turned out to be none other than the infamous Robin Goodfellow, also known as Puck. Along the way she also meets Prince Ash, youngest son of Mab, and Prince of the Unseelie Court. Meghan herself is a Princess, half-human daughter of King Oberon, much to the annoyance of Tatiana, his shrew of a wife.

All in all I give this book five stars and will have a review of the second book in the series The Iron Daughter in soon, as I’ve just finished that one as well.
Happy reading!