Books, fantasy, great reads, indie author, Out of the Box Blogs, paranormal romance, Romance, scifi, steampunk, Urban Fantasy

Questions on Multiple Series

How many series can an author successfully write at one time before the series start to suffer?  When do you know it is time to let a series go?

These are questions I have been pondering for some time and I am interested in opinions that you guys may offer, especially anyone who may be an author. Please understand I am not an author so I approach this only from a reader’s viewpoint.

Can an author successfully give multiple series the attention each deserves without any of them suffering?  I have been reading an author for many years, but this author is now writing five series—the fifth series just started with book one a week ago.  I really enjoyed this book and will write my review very soon.  The series I started with is now nearing release of book number 30.  Personally, I feel this series needed to be ended some time ago, but we now have new characters whom will undoubtedly have books written for them and the overall story arc is still not finished.  It is the series that will never end!!  I also have to wonder, in the author’s defense—how much of this is the author and their muse and how much of it is the publisher continually trying to capitalize on an author’s popularity.

I read several authors who have multiple series, and it is normal for those authors in my experience to release one book a year in the series.  When we are talking about  3 or more series, how can that possibly happen?  Therefore, we are probably looking at over a year between books.   One of my favorite authors generally writes one series at a time and we get a book usually every 6 months and then they start another series.  Granted, these series usually contain 4 to 5 books.  However, the series is completed and then we get to start another one.  With the author who is on book 30, I could literally be in my mid 60s before it finishes and I am already 53!! Some of the recent books have disappointed me with much repetition—hence question 2—when do you know it is time to let go?  I have many years invested in this series and I want to see the end, but I’m tired and don’t receive the level of enjoyment that I used to.

Have any of you faced a similar dilemma and how did you decide?  Looking forward to your thoughts.

 

Books, fantasy, paranormal romance, Reviews, Romance, Urban Fantasy

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas

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I’m a little late on this review but honestly I had a hard time with this book so I waited a long time to post this. Here is my review A Court of Mist and Fury by SJM but first of course is the blurb:

Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.

Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.

With more than a million copies sold of her beloved Throne of Glass series, Sarah J. Maas’s masterful storytelling brings this second book in her seductive and action-packed series to new heights.

The review:

I know I have an unpopular opinion but I feel it’s important to be honest in all my reviews so here it is, my official review of the book. Let me start out by saying that I was actually looking forward to this book, I had heard that it would be a retelling of the Hades/Persephone tale and I found that idea to be interesting. I liked Rhys in the first book, he was bad, totally amoral and seemed to have his own agenda so I was eager to see how she would work the story, and I originally liked Tamlin and Feyre so I was also curious to see how she was going to break their relationship apart. Needless to say I was unhappy with much of this book, but let’s break it down:

1. The length. Holy moly. This book clocks in at 640 pages officially but it felt like 700 and should have been at the very most 400 (though I would have been very happy with it stopping at 350). In fact when I hit 355 pages I remember putting a marker in my kindle and saying “where is this booking going?” in the notes. It needed editing, major editing, I mean like 200 pages worth. Many times the book would go on for pages about side stories or pointless topics that just needed to go.

2. The sex. Listen I read a lot of PNR so it’s not that the sex itself offended me, it’s that it wasn’t very good and it didn’t belong in this type of book. You can’t write a first book for YA and then write a second book that is so obviously NOT YA and expect all the YA fans out there not to read it. And it wasn’t well written! If your going to make the jump into the big girls club do it well dammit! Ugh so bad I actually skimmed the sex scenes, they were just…ridiculous.

3. Feyre. I disliked her sooo much in this book. I am realizing this is a trend with me and SJM, I don’t like her spoiled, selfish, over the top lead female characters. You know the ones that can make mistakes and do what ever they want and EVERYONE kisses their feet but if someone does something, even minor, they don’t like it’s full on temper tantrum time. And everyone in the book is totally fine with that. I hate that, making me really dislike the book.

4. Rhysand. Like I said earlier I loved the contrast of this character in the first book. He was a very good villain, but in this book he lost all the qualities that I loved about him. He went from being this strong, crazy, slightly evil man willing to stand up to Feyre and do whatever it took for his survival (and that of his people) to a marshmallow willing to do anything Feyre wants even if it means everyone else suffers. I hated to see him destroyed.

5. The plot. Which was? Getting the cauldron? That can’t be it, that’s the last 50 pages that would be crazy. Falling in love? Is that a plot? I’m so confused what is the point of this book….

So another SJM series is done for me, honestly for me I think I just don’t like her books. It was really my fault for starting another series after being so disappointed in the direction the ToG series is going and ultimately stopping that one as well.

Books, fantasy, great reads, Reviews, scifi

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Six of Crows

I just finished this book and I must discuss! I loved it…loved, loved, loved it! But this book broke two of my rules as a reader so it leaves the question, can a book be good enough that no matter what the author does we will forgive?  Let’s talk about the book first because frankly this book deserves it.

This blurb: Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…

A convict with a thirst for revenge.

A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.

A runaway with a privileged past.

A spy known as the Wraith.

A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.

A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

If you feel like this blurb doesn’t give you enough information don’t feel bad, the whole book is like that. Getting info is like squeezing water from a rock, you are always desperate for more and never feel as though you have enough. But it’s so successful in this sorry because it keeps you in suspense the whole time, always wondering what is going to happen next, always curious about the main characters themselves. It’s beautifully done too, I never wanted to put the book down because I was lost, I always wanted to find out that next secret or see what the next part of the plan was.

The characters themselves: they were so dark, damaged and honestly somewhat bad that it was refreshing. They rarely did what I wanted them to do, or reacted the way I expected them to at first, so I was forced to really get to know them and once I was fully committed to what they were doing and truthfully…I liked them. Ugh the anxiety! The odds are always against them and no matter how smart Kaz is, things don’t always go their way, I felt like I need an anxiety pill halfway through this book (or some Vodka) I was so stressed, and dedicated to knowing what happened.

******THIS PART MAY FEEL LIKE A SPOILER***** Though I don’t spoil any of the story itself I do make a reference to the ending, if you don’t want to read about that be done with this blog, thanks for reading! Otherwise read on but you have been warned!! If you decide to stop here hey that’s okay I recommend you read the book, you can always come back..

 

 

 

Now let’s talk about the things I usually hate that this author did that I forgave or overlooked. (1) The multiple POV. This is a personal preference for me but usually I DNF books that are written from multiple POV’s. I don’t care if it’s in the first person or third person but when it jumps from person to person to person and I’m constantly having to adjust to a different personality and style per chapter I usually get frustrated. For some reason it worked in this book, because the characters are so closed off I feel I would have never learned anything personal if we didn’t jump between people. (2) The cliffhanger. Ugh this is a deal breaker for me. Now there are degrees of a cliffhanger and as far as this one goes it’s borderline. I feel like authors write cliffhangers for two reasons, because they can’t decide/or can’t write an ending or they want you to read the next book. This felt like the latter. I hate that. I’m going to read it anyway, 90% of the book is resolved, why, why, why?? Maybe you read it and don’t feel like it was a cliffhanger? I did. That being said I will still read the second book, I fact I just preordered it on Amazon. I just like it when my stories are tidy, all finished up with no lose ends.

Okay that being said this book was still amazing, you need to get it and read it. Now!

Books, indie author, Out of the Box Blogs

Do $$$ Effect How We Rate?

I just finished Time Heist by Anthony Vicino. It’s been on my TBR for awhile, and I got it on sale for $0.99 so it was a steal. I like Anthony’s writing, sometimes a bit overelaborate, I’ll give you an example at one point the helicopter thingy (not his words) is crashing and the windshield cracks. This is what Tom the main character thinks Asphyxiation on account of too much air felt too paradoxical a way to die. Though, in the end, I suppose breathing eventually does us all. I was thinking what would have summed it up better? Oh shit. But that’s me, not a writer. And there are times when the clarity of Anthony’s writing is just stunning to me. Tom is addicted to a drug called Quick Sliver. There is a moment when he is detoxing in the middle of the, well everything honestly, and he really doesn’t have time for it (yeah that’s a pun, time) so his partner gives him a hit. It’s then he thinks this...I pitied the living. The dead were my idols. This drug was my god. I read that and thought Anthony you talented s.o.b.

But that’s not what I’m really talking about, what I do want to know is this, I gave this book 4 stars because for $1 it was quite good. In fact if I liked the ending I would have given it 5 stars and written glowing reviews to high heaven everywhere I could think of. But what if the book cost $7 or $8? Now if the ending was different I would have gone with 4 stars, but if not 2-3 stars. And that got me thinking, should my reviews have price factored in? Is that fair, especially if your dealing with a published author who has no control over the price? I do it because I think I was always raised that, the more you pay for it, the higher standard it must adhere to. But is this a proper additude to have in my book reviewing? I’m feel like it’s almost unconscious for me but I’m curious to hear others thoughts on the matter.