Genre: Thriller

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Review: Inherit Midnight by Kate Kae Myers

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Review: Inherit Midnight by Kate Kae MyersInherit Midnight by Kate Kae Myers
Published by Bloomsbury on February 10th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery, Thriller, YA
Source: Bloomsbury
Buy on Amazon

The Competition:

Outlandishly wealthy Grandmother VanDemere has decided to leave her vast fortune to the family member who proves him or herself worthiest-by solving puzzles and riddles on a whirlwind race around the globe, from the mines of Venezuela to the castles of Scotland. There will be eight competitors, three continents . . . and a prize worth millions.

The Players:

Seventeen-year-old Avery is the black sheep of the VanDemere clan, the ostracized illegitimate daughter. Finally, she has a chance to prove herself . . . and to discover the truth about her long-lost mother.

Marshall might be Avery's uncle, but there's no love lost between the two of them. He's her main competition, and he'll do anything to win-including betray his own children.

Riley is the handsome son of Grandmother VanDemere's lawyer. As the game progresses, Avery falls hard for Riley. Suddenly, losing the game might mean losing him, too.

As the competition takes treacherous turns, it becomes clear there can only be one victor. Who can Avery truly trust? And is winning worth her life?

How to describe this book? Basically, if ever Amazing Race and the National Treasure film had a baby, it would be Inherit Midnight. Family secrets, ancestral history dating back to the founding of the New World, a race around the world to see who would inherit the family’s moolah… I mean, it’s really not hard to find the similarities in pop culture.

The only difference is, I would rather watch Amazing Race and National Treasure over reading this again.

Now, don’t get me wrong; this is NOT a bad book by any means, but in the same breath, it wasn’t all that memorable, either. It’s a stand-alone that you may want to suspend your disbelief in order to enjoy… because holy shit, guys, there are so many stuff here that I can only see happening in a 1 to million chance (unless you guys have a deranged grandma to force her money-hungry, non-remorseful kids and grandkids to go to a really deep hole in Venezuela and mine a diamond, because it’s not like that’s extremely dangerous for a bunch of pampered brats who never worked for once in their lives…. right?!). However, if you’re looking for something fun without it making you think too much, this could be a good candidate. Just… be wary of a few things that may piss you off a bit, if you’re as nitpicky as I am.

For starters, this book is a huge info-dump. Because the heirs are on a race to get to the finish line (read: $$$$$$), they will need to solve puzzles and riddles their grandmother has left them – something she thought to do on a whim after she nearly died – which, consequently, results to a shit-ton of background history that are given to us in heavy doses. I am not kidding. In every challenge (there are seven in all), the reader is thrown a bunch of names, a bunch of places, a bunch of stuff that happened to their ancestors, all told in such a matter-of-fact and lecture-like way that it leaves the reader rather overwhelmed, if not, detached, which honestly happened to me. It truly felt like I was in high school again, listening to this boring history teacher of mine spout facts after facts after facts, without even looking at any of us. And why should she? She was reading the “facts” from that goddamn history book. That’s what it honestly felt like, which was a shame, because I love history, especially if it’s taught in such a fun way (shout-out to my two history teachers back in university… you guys were the best).

Thankfully, Inherit Midnight did some cool “reenactment” bits in some scenes, but for the most part, you could pretty much skip the “history lectures” and not really miss anything. Although I don’t think that’s really a good thing for our book here.

Secondly, the writing here leaves a lot to be desired… there were a lot of awkward phrasing here. The number one culprit was:

“I stared at him in a way that showed I was annoyed.”

Like… uhhh… really? How the frack did this phrase pass the editor?! It’s just so awkward! I tried reading it out loud and couldn’t help but cringe in second-hand embarrassment. I was like, surely, there must be a shorter and better way of saying this? Not to mention, the dialogue exchanged sometimes were so incredibly cheesy that I had to pause reading the book at times because I felt like I was being doused with cheese myself. Example (non-verbatim):

Lawyer: We’ll strike a deal. If you win this race, we’ll give you these letters.
MC: Fine, but for every competition won, I want one letter back.
Lawyer: *starts to disagree*
MC: Take it or leave it. *heads to the door*
Lawyer: WAIT! *chuckles* *shakes head* *chuckles softly* This is why we bet on you. You’re ~~*DIFFERENT*~~. You’ve got yourself a deal.

When I got to that bit where he was chuckling and shaking his head, I wanted to rip the world apart. Is it just me? IS IT JUST ME?!?!?!??!?!?!?!!?!

Thirdly, Avery. She was an alright girl, but it felt like she couldn’t do anything without Riley (the love interest and the lawyer’s intern) by her side. It’s like, without Riley she would’ve a.) chickened out; b.) chickened out; c.) chickened out; and d.) not get the clues; or e.) not notice the clues. She had her moments of intelligence and courage, but it was always after Riley would help her, and it really made me feel discouraged. Thankfully she does grow out of her shell later on… unfortunately, though, that’s not my only issue with her. I felt that the way her reactions to certain events were very exaggerated and stupid. She reads a letter from her mother, and this MC right here than RUNS AWAY from where she and Riley were researching, leaving their things vulnerable to the grabby hands of their money-hungry, battle-ready competitors. I really get her being emotional with regards to her mother, as we learn she has never seen or heard of her, and it’s really a nice side story here, but I just couldn’t help but feel the way the way this was handled was so unrealistic.

Other than that, it was okay. I did feel that the romance could have been better set up. No, there were no insta-love, but it did still feel underwhelming somehow. And the competitors and side-characters were also really one-dimensional… pretty much a rinse and repeat of each other: backstabbing, money-hungry (yes, this demands to be repeated every time) fools. Like, after a while, it becomes hard to differentiate them because they’re pretty much the same vultures as each other, with little to no depth at all. They’re all just so intolerant and nasty to our special Avery for such a petty reason that it was hard to even take them seriously.

But, hey, like I said, this is a fun book if you suspend your disbelief. These factors included.

All in all, it was an okay read. Like I said, not bad, but not memorable, either. Try it out if you want to have something akin to The Amazing Race with American and family history mixed.


3 Hot Espressos

Review: The Forgotten Girls by Sara Blaedel

Review: The Forgotten Girls by Sara Blaedel

Posted by on 02/06/2015 • 9 Comments

It’s been a while since I have read an adult mystery/thriller so I decided it was time and this one sounded good. When I requested it, I didn’t realize it was part of a series, but it seems they are more companion novels so it didn’t matter. I was also interested in the setting of this story since it takes place in Denmark. Overall I didn’t really care too much for the characters, but the story kept me interested. Like almost always for me, I did figure out the mystery quickly, but there was much more to it than just who was the person behind it.

Loiuse is now heading a department for missing persons. She is both nervous and excited about this new venture. I don’t know if…

Review: Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

Review: Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

Posted by on 01/30/2015 • 8 Comments

Are you looking for suspense, mystery, and thrills?

Are you looking for a revenge story in a prep school of les rich, complete with a raging, bully-enabling, hypocritical priest at its head?

Are you looking for side characters that are absolutely cardboard cut-outs of the bitch, the jock, the junkie, the minion-of-the-bitch-who-is-actually-miserable-and-feels-happy-when-she-is-complimented-over-the-bitch (wow that was long), the best friend, the snarling physical education teacher – among other “stereotypical” characters – that are absolutely expected now in books like this?

Yes, you get all of these in Get Even. Now, don’t get me wrong. The characters may have been written in such a way that was seriously cheesy and mayhaps even exaggerated to the point that it’s hard to take any of them seriously, but if you like mindless fun, I have no…

Review: There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake

Review: There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake

Posted by on 12/25/2014 • 4 Comments

After reading the synopsis for this, I was super excited to read it. It sounded like a fantastic thriller that would keep me on the edge of my seat. The writing style bothered me at first, but when I realized there was a reason that it was written that way, it was easy to just go with it. There was plenty of action and an emotional element to it, though I didn’t quite feel the level of emotion I wanted from it. There was also a really weird part of the plot that had me scratching my head. Like, I wasn’t aware that there was a paranormal or magical element to this. Anyways, I feel like I’m babbling, but it all makes sense when you finish the book.


Behind the Scenes with Ryan Graudin on Writing The Walled City!

Behind the Scenes with Ryan Graudin on Writing The Walled City!

Posted by on 11/03/2014 • 21 Comments

The Walled City took me by complete surprise when I read and loved it a few months back, and now I’m happy to have Ryan Graudin on the blog for a look at how this book came to be! If you hadn’t heard of The Walled City yet, you can find my review here and see what it’s all about!:

Behind the Scenes with Ryan Graudin

Inspiration. For some, the term calls to mind midnight rushes of words: pages and pages granted by some benevolent muse. I’ve never really liked the inspiration=lightning strike metaphor. Instead I like to think of it as a seed. An idea that I plant and water and cultivate, which slowly grows into something I could have hardly predicted.

Every one of my…

Review: The Walled City by Ryan Graudin

Review: The Walled City by Ryan Graudin

Posted by on 10/20/2014 • 25 Comments

“There are three rules in the Walled City: Run fast. Trust no one. Always carry your knife.”

I admit, this is all I read of the blurb before I dived into this book in line at BEA, so what I expected was some kind of dystopian. And in a way, it is a dystopian-like setting inside the city itself, but this book is not a dystopian/post-apocalyptic story at all. It’s a contemporary thriller. Outside the Walled City, the world is just like ours today, with modern civilization and normal people living normal lives. Inside this city, however, we’ve got another story. In a gist, this book is about the horrors of human trafficking in a city without laws, controlled by gangs and criminals, ruled by brothel owners and drug…

Review: Beware the Wild by Natalie C. Parker

Review: Beware the Wild by Natalie C. Parker

Posted by on 10/15/2014 • 9 Comments

This started on a great note with a super creepy premise that had a lot of potential, but it started dragging and getting more and more ridiculous; magical peaches and gaterboys and all. in the end, I unfortunately can’t say I enjoyed this one very much.

It did grab me full-on at the start, though. Sterling’s brother goes missing inside a swamp, and the next thing you know, a strange girl comes out in his place and no one but our main character even remembers her brother. So of course, her family thinks she’s gone insane. They remember this new girl, though, as if she had been there all along. Even Sterling starts getting false memories about their childhood together. Sounds awesome, right? I loved it,then, I truly did!…

Review: Made For You by Melissa Marr

Review: Made For You by Melissa Marr

Posted by on 08/27/2014 • 14 Comments

Last year I went to my first ever book signing and was so excited to get to meet quite a few authors at the event. One of the authors was Melissa Marr and I was so curious when I saw hoe many die hard fans of hers were there. I thought to myself “I need to read a book by this lady and see what she’s all about!” I failed to do so until this past week and I am now so happy that I finally gave one of her novels a go.

Made For You is being pretty aggressively pitched as her first foray into contemporary and that it’s a gothic novel. Well I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but I would not shelf this novel…