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[identity profile] kiwiria.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] christianreader
I'm not likely to finish any more books today, so here are my books for March!

The Bookshop on Rosemary Lane - Ellen Berry, 3/5, 370 pages
Unfortunately not the feel-good chick-lit I had hoped for, and I almost put it down at 57% because it took such an unpleasant turn. Fortunately it improved, and I enjoyed the last 40%, but I did think that the build-up was FAR too slow compared to the actual plot and resolution.

I'm surprised by all the high ratings I see on Goodreads. This only just made it up to 3 stars for me.

De, der vogter - Claus Holm, 4/5, 384
(Those Who Guard)
I'm not usually a huge fan of short-stories, but these are more like novellas, which help. "Those Who Guard" is made up of four short stories that initially seem to have nothing in common - until you suddenly see small hints that link them all together. I've known the author for ages, and am gratified to see that his dreams of becoming an author are coming true, and that he's actually a rather good one at that!

The Darker Side - Cody McFadyen (Smoky #4), 3.5/5, 379 pages
I think I've been reading too many of these too close to each other. It was still really good, but a) it gets a bit repetitive. b) it becomes increasingly difficult to find something new to write about the books.

But I liked it. It was a quick read, even if a rather disturbing one. I liked the extra insight into Stormy's psyche, even if I did think there ought to have been hints in the earlier books. It seemed a bit too much like it was just invented for this one.

I still want to read more books in this series, but think I may just take a small break before the next one.

Stray - Andrea K. Höst (Touchstone #1)*, 4.5/5, 273 pages
Lab Rat One - Andrea K. Höst (Touchstone #2)*, 4/5, 232 pages
Caszandra - Andrea K. Höst (Touchstone #3)*, 4.5/5, 357 pages
Gratuitous Epilogue - Andrea K. Höst (Touchstone #4)*, 5/5, 128 pages
I decided to reread this series while on holiday, and loved it just as much the second time around :)

In Arcadia - Andrea K. Höst (Touchstone #5), 4/5, 252
Very satisfying follow-up to "Gratuitous Epilogue" and perfect for people who want to know more about how Cass' family adapts to a new planet.

I knew from the set-out that Cass wasn't the main character of this book, but was slightly surprised by just how little a role she played in it. At times it almost seemed like she was left out deliberately, which was a bit jarring.

But apart from that minor nitpick, I really enjoyed it. I loved hearing more about Cass' Australian family, and how they all managed the huge change to their lives. Of course the epilogue only resulted in making me want to know more! I hope Andrea Höst will revisit the universe at a later stage.

Graceling - Kristin Cashore*, 4/5, 471 pages
Rather weird to reread a book where you remember nothing from the first read. And I do mean nothing - it wasn't even just that I couldn't remember ahead of time, but recognized plot points as we got to them - I was totally blank.

Fortunately it was just as good a "first read" the second time around. I enjoyed getting to know Katsa and Po and see how their friendship grew and blossomed into something more. I liked their interactions with Bitterblue, and how Katsa was forced to learn to see herself not just as the monster she always thought she were, but as the capable survivor she turned out to be.

Unfortunately it looks as thought the sequels are more "companion novels" than actual sequels, and as I'm more interested in reading more about Katsa and Po than about the Graceling Realm as a whole, I might give those a miss.

Final Girls - Mira Grant, 3/5, 112 pages
The first stand-alone short-story / novella I've read by Mira Grant (all the others have been in her Newsflesh universe), and it reminded me why I prefer longer novels in order to flesh out the universe more. I loved the premise of the story (revisiting problems via dreams and augmented reality), but thought the writing could have been better. The suspenseful part of the story wasn't nearly as powerful as it would have been, if you'd gotten to know the characters better, and I missed some sort of proper resolution / explanation at the end.

Still, Mira Grant always writes stories worth reading, and despite my small complaints I did enjoy the book and am as always eager to read more from her hand.

Book of the Month: In Arcadia - very satisfying to hear more about Cass and her family :)
Biggest disappointment: The Bookshop on Rosemary Lane - just not what I had expected it to be.
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