Monday, 19 December 2016

Review: Seduction of a Highland Lass by Maya Banks

If you read my review of In Bed with a Highlander I'm pretty sure you can guess what I am going to say about this book. This time round the focus is on Ewan's brother Alaric and his love interest Keeley, both are much better characters than Ewan and Mairin from the first book (although they continued to feature heavily in this book as well). I did feel like Alaric and Keeley were actually in love and Keeley is easily my favourite character of the series so far. The plot was also less stupid and far fetched, although the resolution at the end could have been arrived at much earlier and halved the amount of angst and forbidden love involved.

One thing that really annoyed me throughout this book and the first book was the constant use of the words "Twas", "Twill" and "Twould", I know this is a historical romance there is no need to use these words at the beginning of every sentence to emphasise the point, it's just a lazy way of reminding your reader that they are in olden times. What would have been better is maybe a small bit of historical context or even a date at the beginning of a chapter.

Once again what really made this book disappointing was the sex, it was way too much for a historical romance (bordering on erotica at times) and it was not romantic at all. There was still the really uneven gender divide of the first book and the male characters constant need to guard their women like prisoners. I will read the final book but only because I can't leave a series unfinished, I'm going to need a bit of a break first though.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Review: The Killing Doll by Ruth Rendell


"I kill, therefore I am."

This is one of those books I feel I shouldn't give too much away about, suffice to say it is about a teenage boy who sells his soul to the devil and how that decision affects his sister's life. When I say devil I do not mean a literal character, this is not a fantasy, rather a suspenseful study of the occult and mental illness, touching on alcoholism and with a bit of murder thrown in for good measure. Sounds cheery doesn't it?

I honestly had no idea where this was going until I was about 70% through it, Rendell builds the tension very well throughout and kept me interested enough to carry on while I had absolutely no idea what was going to happen. The characters are some of the more interesting I have read about (maybe because this would not be my go to choice of genre) and the narration was constantly switching between them which I really enjoyed. By the end I could tell who's mind I was in even if it wasn't made clear for a couple of sentences.

This is a book where the small things matter, you notice the routines of the characters and their little quirks. There is no travelling and the whole book revolves around one house in a London suburb. I think the small scope completely absorbed me and I emerged from the last page a little stunned at having been dumped back into reality.

If you like a little bit of darkness and a slow burn then this is the book for you.