Title: Memento (Harmony #1)
Author: Mathieu Reynes
Genre: Young Adult, Comic
One day, Harmony wakes up in an unfamiliar basement having completely lost her memory. All she now knows of the world is the name of her “host,” the mysterious voices in her head and a newly discovered talent for telekinesis. She’s going to have to get her memory back pretty quickly in order to face the dangers that await her. There are so many unanswered questions, and the fight has only just begun…
I loved this book more as a graphics’ fan than a reader.
Let’s start with the things I liked—all the sketches, the panel-positioning and the dialogues. Comics particularly draw me in for the way it’s almost a book I can watch and a film I can read, and Memento was really good in that aspect. Each and every detail is well accounted for; even the angles for each sequence is well thought out and put on paper. Coming on to the dialogues, they worked really well for me. More often than not, I feel the need of captions alongside a few scenes but this comic was good enough with the dialogues. I’m not an expert when it comes to the technicalities, but as a reader, the art was the best thing about it.
Having said that, the story wasn’t that interesting. The usual trope of a superhuman teenage who has no idea of who she is or why she’s demonstrating weird super-abilities, made the story a bit predictable. Everything played out as expected, though the last bit was cleverly (and very well) left for the next editions to follow. Clearly, I’ll be looking out for the sequel, even if I solely want to please my eyes with the amazing illustrations.
I’ll recommend this to all those who are looking for some creatively crafted sketches that layout the story well enough to not be bothered by a predictable plot.
Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this book via Netgalley but that in no way influences my rating and/or opinions about it. Thank you Europe Comics and Methieu Reynes!
Title: Ottercombe Bay: Part One
Author: Bella Osborne
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Escape to the Devon coast, with Part One of a brand-new four-part serial from the author of Willow Cottage.
Daisy Wickens has returned to Ottercombe Bay, the picturesque Devon town where her mother died when she was a girl. She plans to leave as soon as her great uncle’s funeral is over, but Great Uncle Reg had other ideas. He’s left Daisy a significant inheritance – an old building in a state of disrepair, which could offer exciting possibilities, but to get it she must stay in Ottercombe Bay for twelve whole months.
With the help of a cast of quirky locals, a few gin cocktails and a black pug with plenty of attitude, Daisy might just turn this into something special. But can she ever hope to be happy among the ghosts of her past?
I like mysteries, no doubt, but this might be a little change to my taste since it’s more of a cozy mystery. Surprisingly, I liked it. With the year ending, I thought of giving a few other sub-genres a try and see if I can expand my reading preferences for 2018, so cozy mysteries are on my list, no doubt.
The story starts off, and focuses entirely, on Daisy who has always strayed away Ottercombe Bay all her life—well, at least after her mother died here. She returns to this place for her uncle’s funeral, and despite of her unshakable decision to get out of there as soon as the funeral is done with, she’s stopped by a clause that Uncle Reg’s will states. She’ll be inheriting a railway station’s quarters building, on one condition—she needs to stay in Ottercombe Bay for twelve months. Nice conflict and it did pull me in, especially because Daisy was so adamant on leaving but her reasons weren’t disclosed upfront.
The writing is good enough with warm tones and light descriptions that would make you read the book quickly. It certainly qualifies as a cozy mystery, for me, with the story flowing by at a convenient pace that doesn’t get you by the edge of your seat but is still interesting. Having said that, the characters failed to impress me. While Daisy was the epitome of rudeness, arrogance and too much immaturity, the side characters don’t help her grow either. This might be debatable since as of now, there are four more books in this series and there’s a possibility of more exploration left for the ones to follow. However, I’m all for first impressions and while the writing definitely draws me to the author, the character doesn’t call me to the sequels. However, this was a good read despite that factor for the overall story and writing.
I’ll be recommending it to all those who like a good cozy mystery and consider a plot more important than the character.
Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this book via Netgalley but that in no way influences my rating and/or opinions about it. Thank you Avon Books UK and Bella Osborne!
Author: B.B. Shepherd
Genre: YA Contemporary
In many ways, Allison Anderson is like most girls. In others, she’s very different. The differences aren’t immediately obvious but have caused misunderstandings and avoidance from others in the past. Starting high school in a new town, she expects the same experiences—until she meets the Calderas.
David Caldera, charismatic son of a local rancher, adopts Allison into his social circle. He and other new friends introduce her to their world of horses and extreme sports. Along with a lost horse she befriends, they help her to trust, gain confidence, and venture beyond her previously isolated world. She also falls helplessly but hopefully in love.
Navigating through confusing emotions, over-protective parents, and jealous classmates is difficult, but Allison’s overriding fear is losing the people she’s grown to love. To prove her determination to keep up, she enters a race—a dangerous decision that could cost her everything.
Okay, I like big books and I won’t lie, but excessive word count isn’t my cup of tea. This book is legit almost 1000 pages and I knew I might finish it in maximum three hours during my 24-hour-reading spree. However, these three hours became so tiring and unfortunately tedious, and not because I’d been reading for the past twelve hours but because the story was going somewhere but it actually wasn’t. First of all, Bronze is about a coming of age fourteen year old girl, Allison, who doesn’t seem to fit anywhere, finds herself awkward in situations and goes through many of her firsts. While the premise attracted me because I always crave a good teenage-centric story, I was a bit disappointed with the pacing, overindulgent writing, and how despite of reading this huge book, so many questions were left unanswered. Now, in some other cases, I wouldn’t have mind being left with doubts, especially if a sequel is on its way (which in this case, it is) but this book made me more frustrated than curious. I wasn’t expecting closure on each and every character’s story but at least a few of those mysteries should’ve been solved. It’s almost like I read it to only wait for the sequel if I want to know everything that’s left open. Having said that, I do think the characters made up for the overall ‘okay’ experience of reading this book. There are quite a number of them through the vast pages of the book and all of them are distinctively interesting, something that keeps you going even if the plot isn’t moving forward much. I might’ve DNF-ed this if I wouldn’t have wanted to know how it will all end.
Not particularly recommending it to many but you can read this if you’ve got some time on your hands and slow drifting is one of your preferences.
Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this book via Netgalley but that in no wy influences my opinions and/or rating about it. Thank you China Blue Publishing and B.B. Shepherd!
Author: Lynette Noni
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
With just one step, 16-year-old Alex Jennings’s world changes – literally.
Dreading her first day at a new school, Alex is stunned when she walks through a doorway and finds herself stranded in Medora, a fantasy world full of impossibilities.
Desperate to return home, she learns that only Professor Marselle can help her… but he’s missing. While waiting for him to reappear, Alex attends Akarnae Academy, Medora’s boarding school for teenagers with extraordinary gifts. She soon starts to enjoy her bizarre new world and the friends who embrace her as one of there own, but strange things are happening at Akarnae, and Alex can’t ignore her fear that something unexpected… something sinister… is looming.
An unwilling pawn in a deadly game, Alex’s shoulders bear the crushing weight of an entire race’s survival. Only she can save the Medorans, but what if doing so prevents her from ever returning home?
Will Alex risk her entire world… and maybe even her life – to save Medora?
DNF at 36%
I won’t judge the book on the story since I didn’t even finish it but the plot was nothing intriguing for me. There’s a doorway that led Alice into a new world which has been read and seen before (ahem, Narnia) but this supernatural occurrence fell absolutely flat when Alice came across as an illogical human being who didn’t even understand how weird this stepping into a new world is. I think she was living in a bubble, which could’ve been fine if her age was resonating with her thoughts; if she was much younger than a sixteen-year-old, I would’ve let that fact slide but unfortunately, she wasn’t.
Then there is a boarding school that’s basically a castle (ahem, Harry Potter) and this, again, could’ve been fun to read if the world wasn’t confusing me with the tech-y stuff that contradicted the good ol’ setting or combat training. Not only this, Alice meets these two boys who, again, are not bothered much about how or why this random teenager is in their world. But the peak for me to leave this book unfinished would be the writing—maybe it’s my personal preference but I need more descriptions especially if this world has so many things incorporated in it, but the writing came across as bland and a little too ‘telling’. Anyway, I’m well aware that I’m in the minority here so feel free to give this a shot and see if it’s something for you, because I can’t recommend something I didn’t even finish reading.
Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this via Netgalley but that in no way influences my rating and/or my opinions about it.Thank you Pantera Press and Lynette Noni!