Tag Archives: Tantor Audio

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Book Review: Paladin’s Strength, by T. Kingfisher

I borrowed and audio copy of T. Kingfisher‘s Paladin’s Strength through Hoopla (narrated by Joel Richards). It is book two in The Saint of Steel series. I reviewed book one, Paladin’s Grace, a month or so ago.
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He’s a paladin of a dead god, tracking a supernatural killer across a continent. She’s a nun from a secretive order, on the trail of the raiders who burned her convent and kidnapped her sisters.

When their paths cross at the point of a sword, Istvhan and Clara will be pitched headlong into each other’s quests, facing off against enemies both living and dead. But Clara has a secret that could jeopardize the growing trust between them, a secret that will lead them to the gladiatorial pits of a corrupt city, and beyond…

my review

Well, this was officially another winner for me. I’m becoming a huge T. Kingfisher fan. I did think Istvhan sounded an awful lot like Stephen from Paladin’s Grace (book one of the series), as in most of the Paladin’s seem to sound interchangeable. Granted, they were all paladin’s of the same god, would have spent a lot of time together and have similar background. So, maybe that’s to be expected. But it does show a bit of an author’s (maybe) limitation when too many characters sound too much alike. To be fair, I happen to love the character type—their mien, stoicism, deprecating humor, honor, etc. So, I’m not so much complaining as simply observing. I also thought the book was a little longer than need be. But my goodness, how I loved Clara and her by-play with Istvhan, how Kingfisher lets them be older and beautiful in non-standard ways, and the basic moral palette of the books. I will 100% be back for more!

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Other Reviews:

A Balm for Troubled and Troubling Times – A Review of Paladin’s Strength by T. Kingfisher

Review: Paladin’s Grace


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Book Review: Spin the Shadows, by Cate Corvin

I borrowed an audio copy of Cate Corvin‘s Spin the Shadows through Hoopla. It was narrated by Amy Melissa Bentley.

Spin the Shadows

I ate six seeds. Now I owe six months of debt to a dangerously sexy Fae hitman.

I’d had everything a dryad could want- a job, an apartment, and a scandalous human boyfriend-
Until I stole the wrong fruit from the wrong Fae.
Dragged into the Seelie underworld of deception and lies, I do anything he commands: steal, spy, even fight as we hunt down a notorious Fae fugitive.
Not exactly the fun I was looking for, despite the intense attraction between us.
But when the mission ends, I may not want to leave.

Dark and Wicked Fae is a Hades and Persephone-inspired Fae reverse harem romance, with high steam and a harem that builds over time. For mature readers only.

my review

This was a big bucket of Meh for me. I wouldn’t call the writing or the narration bad. It’s just that nothing about the book—not the characters, not the world, not the supposed romance, hell, not even the one sex scene—lit me up. I felt pretty flat about the whole thing, the whole way through.

I said “supposed romance” because, despite being a slow-burn reverse harem, there is no romance here. The main character has sex with one man, kisses another, and is obviously open to a third who hasn’t made a move yet. But there is no romance going on, not even before the sex scene. So, meh.

But worst of all, for me, was that the entire method to her investigation is to dress like a whore and walk into arenas where men disrespect, disparage and abuse women. And while I understood that punishing such men was part of her motivation, it meant I had to sit through  the disrespect, disparagement, and abuse of women. I don’t enjoy that. At. All. What’s more, I’ve read such plots so many times that I’ve come to consider them the lazy, low-hanging fruit of the plotting world. So, meh.

All in all, Cate Corvin may be a fine writer. I might try another of her series. But I have no desire to continue this one.

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Other Reviews:

Tracy’s Book Reviews: Spin the Shadows


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Book Review: Dangerous Magic, by Monica Fairview

I borrowed an audio copy of Monica Fairview‘s Dangerous Magic through Hoopla. It was narrated by Jennifer M. Dixon.
dangerous magic monica fairview

Elizabeth Bennet is stunned when the Royal Mages come to her peaceful country home of Longbourn to take her away. She is even more bewildered when she is commanded to marry a powerful mage by the name of Fitzwilliam Darcy. She has always dreamed of marrying for love, and an arranged marriage with an arrogant stranger was never part of her plans.

But Darcy and Elizabeth have no choice in the matter. Uniting their two forms of magic is essential if the Kingdom is to defeat Napoleon’s mages. They may dislike each other on sight, but Darcy and Elizabeth have to overcome their differences and find common ground before it is too late. Fortunately, it is not long before the sparks begin to fly between them.

Join the author of ‘Fortune and Felicity’ in this enchanting Jane Austen Variation, a story of determination, love, and hope against all odds.

my review

I’m not entirely certain why I downloaded this book. I’m not a particular fan of re-tellings, be they fairy-tales or Jane Austen. I think maybe I just wasn’t paying enough attention to notice the subtitle at the time.

I am of two fairly disparate opinions about this book. On one hand I think it would have been a perfectly readable story without the gimmick of tying it into Pride & Prejudice. And on the other hand I feel that if it hadn’t been ham-stringed by following Pride & Prejudice‘s plot (even loosely) it could have grown into a deeper and more compelling story.

My main emotion while listening to this book was boredom. I felt like nothing happened for the vast majority of it. Then suddenly Darcy’s feelings for Elizabeth changed out of nowhere and then hers did too. Then there was a fairly vague battle, some drama in the background, and ardent declarations of love. I didn’t feel engaged or engrossed in any of it.

Further, While I understand that as a re-telling Fairview was somewhat constrained in character portrayals, but I’d be thrilled if we could all stop writing stories where all the men are lovely and trustworthy and all the women (if there are any at all) are jealous and duplicitous.

The writing itself seems perfectly fine. It seemed to pass as Austen-like and was certainly easy to listen to. All in all, I think this will work for others more than it did for me.

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Other Reviews:

Dangerous Magic by Monica Fairview

“Dangerous Magic” by Monica Fairview, review + giveaway

Dangerous Magic: A Pride & Prejudice Variation (Mr. Darcy’s Magic Book 1), by Monica Fairview — A Review