2014 – Book #104

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The hundred and fourth book I read in 2014 was Undead and Unstable by MaryJanice Davidson. This is the eleventh book in the Undead/Betsy Taylor series by this author. I finished this book on 11/26/14. I rated this book 4.0 stars out of a scale of 5. This book picks up about a week after where the last book left off. Marc has just died and everyone is trying to deal with the repercussions of that. Betsy seems to be taking it less well than the others. Betsy is determined to save Marc and bring him back from the dead. Jess and Nick (those darned humans) are opposed to this idea but Betsy is going to do it anyways.

Fortunately for Betsy, she doesn’t need to do a thing. She goes into the attic to put something away and discovers zombie Marc just shambling around up there. And then we find out from Laura that the Book of the Dead is actually made out of Sinclair. Like from his skin. Because the devil skins him alive in the future and Betsy uses his skin to make the Book of the Dead. So then Sinclair goes off for awhile and Betsy thinks it’s because he is scared but I guess he was researching.

And then Ancient Betsy pops up and says that she’s waiting for something to happen but she won’t say what. So Betsy decides on a spur of the moment decision to do something a little unexpected and kill the devil. And then Laura will have to take her place. But hopefully because she doesn’t end up working with the Lena Olin devil, hopefully Betsy doesn’t do a bunch of bad shit and the world as they know it won’t come to an end.

Overall I did really like this book, as I liked all the books in this series. This book specifically I liked the plot twists and turns and I like that Betsy took some kind of action to try and save her and Sinclair. And since the Book of the Dead was gone in the end of this book, I’m hoping she succeeded. Good read and good addition to the series.

Link to author website: http://www.maryjanicedavidson.net/

Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Undead-Unstable-Queen-Betsy/dp/B00B1LDDRE/ref=tmm_hrd_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1417029191&sr=8-2

2014 – Book #103

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The hundred and third book I read in 2014 was Wolf at the Door by Mary Janice Davidson. This book is technically part of the Wyndham Werewolves series but Betsy Taylor from the Undead series plays her own part in this book so I am reading it in my Undead series re-reading. It says in the preface to this book that it takes place after Undead and Undermined (the tenth book in the Undead series) but I’m pretty sure that’s not true. In this book Marc is already up and walking around and everyone knows about him. At the end of Undead and Undermined, Marc had just died. I think this book really takes place after the end of the next book or maybe even the one after that. Anyways, I finished this book on 11/22/14. I rated this book 3.0 stars out of a scale of 5. This book was about Rachael Velvela, a werewolf accountant, and Edward, a Bostonian who lives with a vampire and vampire hunter.

Rachael is asked by her cousin Michael (leader of the Wyndham werewolf Pack) to go St. Paul and keep an eye on the vampire queen (Betsy Taylor). Meanwhile Edward in Boston gets a copy of the vampire newsletter and decides to go check things out. The two meet by chance in a Barnes and Noble and boink their brains out. And eventually solve the mystery of some murders.

This book was ok. My main problem with it is that the timeline doesn’t really work. There is a lot of mention of Antonia dying, but she came back to life at the end of Undead and Undermined. And Marc had just died and was not yet a zombie (spoiler alert). I’m glad I had already read the next book in the series or else I would be pissed and confused about that point. Other than those issues, the book was cute and slightly entertaining. Overall definitely not one of my favorites but was an ok read.

Link to author webiste: http://www.maryjanicedavidson.net/

Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Wolf-at-Door-MaryJanice-Davidson/dp/0425243117/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1416666186&sr=8-4

2014 – Book #102

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The hundred and second book I read in 2014 was Blood Magick by Nora Roberts. This is the third book in her Cousins O’Dwyer trilogy. I read the first book in 2013 and it is therefore not on this blog yet, the second book I read in 2014 and you can see the review here. I finished this book on 11/16/14. I rated this book 3.25 stars out of a scale of 5. This book tells the story of Branna O’Dwyer and Finbar Burke. Branna is the last of the three Dark Witches of Mayo. She has been in love with Finbar Burke since she was young but after they had sex for the first time when they were eighteen Fin woke up one morning with the mark of Cabhan.

Ever since that day, Fin has remained in Branna’s life but they haven’t been together as they both longed to be. In the previous two books we hear the story of Iona, Branna’s cousin from America, and Connor, Branna’s brother. We hear much of Branna and Fin’s back story through the first two books but we learn about some interesting developments in this third book in the trilogy. To be honest I thought it was a little weird that all of a sudden in this book Branna trusts Fin and decides to have a slumber party with him after all the inner turmoil she put herself through in the first two books.

Overall I thought this was an ok book. The ending went a little fast for me. It was a three book build up to this ending that was only about 10 pages, it just felt a little anticlimactic. It may have also been that i was looking forward to the book so much that I psyched myself up for it a bit too much. I did a WOW post on this book previously, which you can see here. And also I had trouble getting emotionally involved in the story, I didn’t feel like the characters had a lot of depth to them. Other than that it was a good read and I love the magical twist and also the glimpses into and connection with the past and the first three Dark Witches.

Link to author website: http://www.noraroberts.com/

Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Blood-Magick-Cousins-ODwyer-Roberts/dp/0425259870/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1416355039&sr=8-1

2014 – Book #101

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The hundred and first book I read in 2014 was Undead and Undermined by MaryJanice Davidson. This is the tenth book in her Undead/Betsy Taylor series. I finished this book on 11/9/14. I rated this book 4.25 stars out of a scale of 5. This book picks up almost immediately after where the last book left off. Betsy and Laura have returned from hell unscathed and Betsy is determined not to let the future she saw become the future that actually happens. She will forewarn her friends and family and she will prevent disaster. Of course first she and Sinclair must have lots of sex before she can tell everyone what’s up and what she learned on her travels.

First thing Betsy notices (it’s hard to miss) is that she’s currently in an alternate timeline. Garrett is still alive, and not only are Jess and Nick (who goes by Dick now I guess) still together, Jess is pregnant! Fortunately that’s just about the biggest differences between this timeline and the last one Betsy was in so she is still the vampire queen, and Sinclair is still madly in love with her. Oh and I forgot one of the other biggest differences is that Christian Louboutin (famous shoe designer, Betsy has about a dozen pairs of shoes by him) no longer makes shoes in this timeline, and instead Betsy has about a dozen pairs of velvet clogs (barf).

Unfortunately, someone seems to have tagged along on Betsy and Laura’s travel back to their own time. The Marc Thing from the future pops up in Betsy’s kitchen while she is debriefing her fellow house-dwellers.They manage to tape The Marc Thing up to a fridge with about eight rolls of duct tape. Unfortunately, while they’re still trying to figure out what to do with The Marc Thing, Betsy and Laura end up in a pretty nasty fight and they tumble on back to hell. Betsy ends up tumbling through and ends up in Chicago and gets hit by a car.

Overall I very much liked this book, as I do all the books in this series. I especially liked the idea of alternate timelines and how Betsy affected her own past and future when she messed with the past in the last book.

Wkipedia page about Christian Louboutin: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_Louboutin

Link to author website: http://www.maryjanicedavidson.net/

Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Undead-Undermined-Queen-Betsy/dp/B007F7R9G4/ref=tmm_hrd_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1415662918&sr=8-1

2014 – Book #100

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The hundredth book I read in 2014 was Long Time Coming by Edie Claire. This book was recommended to me by my cousin, Stephanie Gorman. I finished this book on 11/9/14. This was the first book I’ve read by this author. I rated this book 3.5 stars out of a scale of 5. This book tells the story of Joy Hudson, who after 18 years away returns home to Wharton, Kentucky to care for her father and mother, both of which are not in the best of health anymore. Joy left home a long time ago and never looked back, too scarred by traumatic events that occurred at the end of her senior year to think of Wharton as home.

When Joy returns to Wharton though she is forced to face a variety of issues that she had up until then successfully avoided. Like why she feels so guilty about her best friend’s death in high school. And why she’s scared of Jeff Bradford (her best friend’s high school boyfriend) and how he makes her feel, even now eighteen years later.

Overall I did enjoy this book. I was interested in the story line and liked the mixture of paranormal and suspense in the plot. I thought that the characters could’ve been developed a tad bit more and had more depth. As much as we delved into Joy’s psyche I found her character to be a bit flat I guess. Other than that I liked the story well enough. Though I wouldn’t consider it one of my favorites, it was interesting and also free on Amazon Kindle!

Link to author website: http://www.edieclaire.com/

Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Long-Time-Coming-Edie-Claire-ebook/dp/B004RJ7Y8Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1415646021&sr=8-1&keywords=long+time+coming

2014 – Book #99

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The ninety-ninth book I read in 2014 was In Your Dreams by Kristan Higgins. I have been very excited about this book for awhile (in fact, here is my “Waiting on Wednesday” post on the book) and couldn’t wait to start reading it. And once I started I couldn’t seem to put it down! I finished this book on 11/3/14. I rated this book 5 stars out of a scale of 5. This is the fourth book in the Blue Heron series. I have read the previous three books in the series as well and loved them all, though only one is discussed on this blog since the others were read prior to 2014. You can read my post on the other book in the series here. This really is just such a great series by one of my favorite authors and I highly recommend it!! I devour her books, I already can’t wait for the next in the series (hopefully Connor’s story!) to come out!!!

So, In Your Dreams is about police woman Emmaline Neal and town favorite Jack Holland. (Just for reference, Jack is brother to Faith and Honor, who were the heroines in books #1 and #2 in the series.) Emmaline had her heart squashed by her fiance 3 years ago and moved to Manningsport, NY to start over. Unfortunately, the dating pool is limited in the area so when she receives an invitation to her ex-fiance’s wedding, she has to find a man and fast. Luckily, Jack is skilled in helping out damsels in distress. He has been a last minute date for many functions in the past for various women in town, though he doesn’t expect to enjoy spending time with Emmaline quite so much.

Hoenstly I just loved this book. I literally couldn’t put it down, I read it in two nights because I got lost in the world that Higgins created. She is so gifted in character development and drawing you into the story. I love the characters she’s formed in this series and I love their individual stories. It was a great read and I would highly recommend trying it! For that matter, I would highly recommend the whole series!!

Link to author website: http://www.kristanhiggins.com/index.html

Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Your-Dreams-Blue-Heron-Series/dp/0373779313/ref=tmm_mmp_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1415105684&sr=8-1

2014 – Book #98

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Unfortunately I was not able to read the whole Undead series during the month of October for my Spooky Series Reading Challenge. That may have been over-ambitious on my part considering the amount of work that has been piling up this month (this is my second-busiest season of the year) but I tried and I will continue to finish the series over the next month. You can never really fail at reading, so I consider my first reading challenge to be a great accomplishment overall and it was fun! And so, the ninty-eighth book I finished in 2014 was Undead and Unfinished by MaryJanice Davidson. This is the ninth book in her Undead/Betsy Taylor series. I finished this book on 11/2/14. I rated this book 4.75 stars out of a scale of 5. This book picks up about two months after where the last book left off. The dreaded month of November is upon Betsy’s household and as usual she is avoiding anything and everything to do with the horrid month (Betsy has some intense opinions about November).

Betsy decides to teach her sister a thing or two about Hollywood’s version of the Antichrist, and together they watch many of the cinematic versions of Laura. Laura admits to being curious about her biological mother but its only after Laura wakes up naked in a public area that Betsy decides she’s going ot have to hike up her big girl panties and take Laura down into hell. And since Sinclair is being such a distant, cold jerk, there couldn’t be a better time for Betsy’s little field trip to hell.

When they arrive they learn that the lesson for the day for Laura is going to be time travel. And off Laura and Betsy trot to travel through time and space. Apparently since Laura is half human she needs physical contact with a blood relative (Betsy) until she gets the hang of doing the traveling on her own. And since Betsy is the one she’s punching in the face, they end up following a path of times in the past that end up being meaningful to Betsy’s life. Like seeing Sinclair when he was a little kid, and making sure that Tina turned Eric after Eric’s family died. Apparently Betsy’s interference was necessary in many ways to keep the time stream operating as she knew it, and one bonus thrown in that she was able to fix something she wished she could undo.

Overall, the idea behind this book can be a little unbelievable if you think too hard about it. Why did Betsy have to go back in time to fix it so that things happened that should have already happened? And why was that one bonus thrown in that she made it so she never bit Nick? And why did she only get to go to the future for one stop, and why was it so unbelievably sucky? I personally loved the story line to this book, it was different, it kept me interested, and it had plenty of twists and turns along the way. I saw on Amazon that a lot of people were upset about the direction of this book but I thought that it was a great addition to the series.

Link to author website: http://www.maryjanicedavidson.net/

Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Undead-Unfinished-Mary-Janice-Davidson/dp/B004R07A1G/ref=tmm_hrd_title_2

Spooky Series Reading Challenge – Wrap-up

So! As you guys can see, I wasn’t able to read all of the books in the Undead series like I had planned. I did get through a good chunk though, I read 8 in the series and 2 connected novellas. I just finished the ninth yesterday and I plan to finish the rest of the series this month even though my spooky series reading challenge has ended. So if you were just dying to see what happens, stay tuned! We will get to the end. And even though I’m pretty sure no one else participated in my Spooky Series Reading Challenge (besides my mom :-)) I still had fun doing it! And maybe someday I’ll have reading challenges with lots of other people involved! Thanks everyone for reading! Hope you all enjoyed Halloween!