Genre: Adult


Friday, September 12, 2014

Review: Rooms by Lauren Oliver

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Review: Rooms by Lauren Oliver
Rooms
Lauren Oliver
Genre: Adult, Mystery, Paranormal
Publication date: September 23rd 2014
by Ecco

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Wealthy Richard Walker has just died, leaving behind his country house full of rooms packed with the detritus of a lifetime. His estranged family—bitter ex-wife Caroline, troubled teenage son Trenton, and unforgiving daughter Minna—have arrived for their inheritance.

But the Walkers are not alone. Prim Alice and the cynical Sandra, long dead former residents bound to the house, linger within its claustrophobic walls. Jostling for space, memory, and supremacy, they observe the family, trading barbs and reminiscences about their past lives. Though their voices cannot be heard, Alice and Sandra speak through the house itself—in the hiss of the radiator, a creak in the stairs, the dimming of a light bulb.

The living and dead are each haunted by painful truths that will soon surface with explosive force. When a new ghost appears, and Trenton begins to communicate with her, the spirit and human worlds collide—with cataclysmic results.

Elegantly constructed and brilliantly paced, Rooms is an enticing and imaginative ghost story and a searing family drama that is as haunting as it is resonant.
-A copy was provided by HarperCollins for review-

I didn’t love this, but it’s a very unique – I’d even say peculiar – story with some candid personalities and buried secrets. And of course, Lauren’s writing makes the storyline so intriguing that it compels you to read even if it’s not blowing your mind. This review will be short, because the whole of this (also short) book is one haunting secret after another being unearthed into a story full of tragedy.

Brought together in this house by the death and upcoming burial of a husband and father, this story encircles the lives of half a dozen people who make up our narrators of this novel. While we learn the ins and outs of what makes these people who they are, we also learn that, ultimately, this is the ghosts’ tale. Even though this involves ghosts and a haunted house, it’s far from being a horror novel. It’s a family drama full of secrets and blame, of death and broken lives. It’s undoubtedly very well written, constructed with many layers and strings that tie everything together.

With so many POVs, though, comes along a difficulty to fully connect with these characters. I very much enjoyed both Alice and Susan – the resident ghosts; their bickering is a lot of fun, and you just know they’ve got a dark secret that’s keeping them there. For some reason, though, I kept confusing their backstories and forgetting which history belonged to which ghost. Maybe it’s my lack of attention, or maybe the voices were not distinct enough; I think it’s a little bit of both. Aside from those two, and maybe Trenton with his suicidal thoughts, I found myself getting bored with the other characters. In turn, I never grew emotionally attached to this story, which does have a lot of heartbreak and sadness meant to hit you right in the heart. As everyone’s lives are painted with a dark brush, crafting them into somber, self-loathing characters, it’s natural to want to keep at arm’s length like I did. And in doing so, I was left wanting more from it, never being completely enthralled until maybe the last 5 chapters or so when the ghosts finally face their demons.

The story that Lauren paints is not joyful and happy, it gets sadder and sadder with every thread that unravels. Until finally, you’re left with a broken heart and a disturbing thought that life, sometimes, just truly sucks. The writing itself is not the issue at all – it’s beautifully written with a poetic sort of feel – I simply did not fall into the emotional depths that this tale was obviously striving for.

“Everything comes up in the end”

3 Stars
3 Hot Espressos

Review: Night Film by Marisha Pessl

Review: Night Film by Marisha Pessl

Posted by on 09/11/2014 • 20 Comments

Night Film is a book that I can say is unlike any other. And now I’m going to contradict that and say it reminded me a bit of The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo. Not in story or plot, but in its atmosphere and compelling nature. Night Film gives us a mystery like no other, following a horror movie director – Cordova – who has become a cult favorite and a huge enigma; his entire life is an endless puzzle. After his daughter commits suicide, Scott’s journalist nature can’t help but dig into this story. What he finds is at once fascinating and horrifying. But… what’s the real truth?

At 640 pages, this is one whopper of a book. Don’t let this intimidate you, though, it never has a chance…

Exclusive Sneak Peek at The Gifted Dead + Giveaway!

Exclusive Sneak Peek at The Gifted Dead + Giveaway!

Posted by on 09/10/2014 • 18 Comments

For fans of Urban Fantasy, I’ve got a treat for you today: an exclusive sneak peek at The Gifted Dead by Jenna Black as well as a chance to win!

Unique and Catchy Scene from The Gifted Dead!

Paris, France

Lynda Powell shut the bedroom door in her son’s face, turning the deadbolt despite Patrick’s Gift. If he wanted in, the lock would open for him, but at least she’d made her wishes clear.

“Mother, don’t be like this,” he said in the overly patient voice he’d been using with her ever since his father, her beloved Harry, had died.

Had it been only two months ago? The seemingly endless cycle of appeals had made it seem so much longer. Now word had come from the Abbey…

Review: Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes

Review: Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes

Posted by on 09/05/2014 • 6 Comments

What a crazy ride. I love thrillers, and while YA thrillers can be a lot of fun and even sometimes pretty creepy, it never lives up to what an adult book can dish out. This is your hardcore serial killer novel involving a mentally unstable psycho who thinks he’s doing the world a favor.

This story is told with the help of several perspectives: from the killer himself, to the detective trying to find him; to her daughter, along with a few other key players. Beukes tackles multiple POVs with excellence. Even though each character is widely different – we go from a homeless man to teenage girls – every single one has a distinct, realistic voice that makes it easy to slip into their psyche, in addition to…

Review: The Fever by Megan Abbott

Review: The Fever by Megan Abbott

Posted by on 07/22/2014 • 13 Comments

The Fever ended up being quite the interesting read, especially psychologically speaking. It’s both a puzzling mystery as well as a look into the rashness of teenage girls burning with jealousy.

What I noticed almost immediately was the writing style, to which I can’t say I’m exactly a fan. Megan tells this story with the help of three family members who are each given a perspective in the story. We switch back and forth from father, son, and daughter in a very spastic manner, each perspective lasting from a mere paragraph to no more than a couple of pages. While, in a way, I enjoyed the style in which it told the story with quick back-and-forth glimpses from several point-of-views, constantly being pulled in all directions made me feel very…

Review: The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey

Review: The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey

Posted by on 07/08/2014 • 21 Comments

*slow clap* I don’t even know where to begin reviewing this book. It was a book that I didn’t plan to read, I heard from my co-blogger it was a split POV story told in the third person and I thought “Rubbish! I don’t want that in my life.” Then a little birdie came along, one by the name of Christina of A Reader of Fictions and she said “Look, you need this book in your life. Total Jenni bait.” So I gave it a go and wow. I’m at a loss for words (which, if you know me, NEVER happens) because this book was just… everything.

We are introduced to the world through the eyes of a little girl named Melanie who spends her time in a cell and…

Review: Landline by Rainbow Rowell

Review: Landline by Rainbow Rowell

Posted by on 07/04/2014 • 18 Comments

Landline is different from what I expected: first of all it’s an adult book which I only realized when I started it, but this is totally my fault and also not a bad thing. I was due for an adult book. And, unlike her usual contemporary reads, this one has a bit of a paranormal vibe to it. I’m not sure how I felt about this at first, I loved the mind-f*ck nature of it, but it has an element that very rarely impresses me [time-travel], so I was afraid of the direction it was going in. In the end, though, I can say I quite enjoyed the story. It has a bit of a fairy-tale quality to it, so have to go into it with an open mind, but…

Review & Giveaway: The Fever by Megan Abbott

Review & Giveaway: The Fever by Megan Abbott

Posted by on 06/05/2014 • 14 Comments

Upon finishing The Fever I wasn’t really sure how I felt about it and to be honest I still don’t really know.  Usually when I write a review I go into having a general idea of what I want to say and I already have a good idea of what my rating will be.  Going into writing this review I am hoping that it will provide me with some clarity when it comes to my thoughts on the novel.

At the heart of my… indifference for the novel is the way in which it is told.  It’s a split POV tale that is told in the third person.  I always struggle when it comes to stories told in the third person, let alone when we have three different…