Saturday, August 23, 2008

Okay, guys. Time for a non-book-review post.

I just happened to walk into my local library today during the monthly Friends of the Library sale. Various (ridiculously cheap) prices for books, OR $5 gets you a bag you can fill - and boy can I pack books into a bag!

22 books for $5. The vast majority were mass market paperbacks, but still. 22 books. $5. Ri. Dic. U. Lous.

So, moral of the post? Frequent your local library, folks. Not only will it keep those of us who can't afford to buy many books brand new reading, but you might just walk into an incredible deal in the process. Heck, the library is already an incredible deal: you pay nothing (well, taxes, but you're already paying those) for a vast selection of books you can take home and read any time you want!

In conclusion, to sum up, etc.: support your local library. Your community will thank you.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Wicked Lovely

Title: Wicked Lovely
Author: Melissa Marr
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Rating: 5 stars out of 5

Aislinn sees faeries. She has always been able to see them - and she's always kept this fact a secret, especially from the faeries. But now two of them are stalking her - and one is the Summer King! Suddenly Aislinn's rules for keeping safe from the faeries are failing her, and she wants out. Keenan, the Summer King, is not about to let that happen.

I loved this book! It had me reading until I was too tired to keep my eyes open, then as soon as I woke up again I was back reading the book. It is phenomenal. Goodness. I'm trying to write an actual review here, and not just gush, but it is very hard to do.

Part of what kept me reading was the conflict not only over Aislinn's life - mortal? Summer girl? Winter girl? Summer Queen? - but over her love life as well. I loved Seth, as we as readers are supposed to (after all, we see him through Aislinn's eyes) and wanted to see Aislinn end up with him, but I felt for Keenan as well. The boy (can you really call him a boy if he is hundreds of years old? Yes.) deserved someone to love him and be with him, too. And poor Donia!

I will agree with many of the reviews which peg the Winter Queen as a little too campy. She was over the top, yes. BUT. Faeries are not exactly creatures of half-measures. So, yes, the Winter Queen was your typical "evil" villain, but for a reason. She had a desire - to stay Winter Queen - and her own nature would not let her slide even the slightest bit in pursuit of that goal, even though it meant (figuratively) sacrificing her child, her lover, etc.

One of the things I definitely appreciate is the ending ringing true - no "happily ever after" extreme, but no "things went to hell after that and nothing could bring it back" extreme, either.

Wicked Lovely is a beautiful book, perfect for lovers of YA fantasy, of urban fantasy, or even simply YA lit. It has inspired me not only to write again (not waiting for NaNoWriMo), but to explore the realm of urban fantasy. Can you imagine a shopping mall-sized faerie-owned nightclub? Yeah, me too.

Friday, August 1, 2008

The Royal Treatement

Title: The Royal Treatment
Author: MaryJanice Davidson
Genre: Chick lit/Romance
Rating: 3 stars out of 5

In this slightly-alternate world of MaryJanice Davidson's, everything is exactly the same as our own - except that Alaska, instead of being sold to the US in the 1800s, broke away from Russia and became its own country with its own erm.. unique monarchy.

Enter American Christina Krabbe ("It's pronounced 'Crab', no 'e.'"), a no-nonsense ex-cruise ship cook. She jumped ship upon quitting (due to an incident involving flooring her boss for sexual harassment) and found herself stranded in Alaska, only to be taken in by none other than the king himself - and set up with the crown prince as the future crown princess!

This book is fun, lighthearted, and funny. Unlike Davidson's Queen Betsy series, the heroine of The Royal Treatment is smart, a fact which I greatly appreciated. Christina is smart, has a don't-mess-with-me attitude, knows what she wants and won't back down from anyone - not even the king himself, nor any of his five equally strong-willed children.