Friday, September 12, 2014

Thank You, Kim Harrison, for a Great Run

A reader can lose herself in Rachel Morgan's world. I can't live in a church, but why can't I have pixies tending my garden? 

As readers of this blog know, I picked up a free copy of Dead Witch Walking at a publisher's booth at Comic-Con 2014. I loved it. I bought the second book, and was happy it was one of those rare sequels, as good as the first book. Since then I purchased and read all the already published books, including the Hallows Insider. I even bought new copies so the author would get royalties. I pre-ordered the 13th and it arrived shortly after I finished the 12th book. Perect timing.

Wow, did Kim Harrison do a terrific job of tying up all the intricate story lines and giving every character a satisfactory ending. This series was about growth and change through forgiveness and acceptance and, most importantly, the power of love. The lessons Rachel learned and taught others should be learned by all of us who are imprisoned by actions taken by other people in a distant past. We should all look forward, not back, take care of the people we love and try to make where we are a better place to be.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Book 32: Find You in the Dark

Title and Author: Find You in the Dark, by A. Meredith Walters

Illustrator: none
Publisher: Gallery Books, a division of Simon & Schuster
Published: 2012
Genre: Young adult fiction/romance
Target Audience/Age Group: Young Adults
Part of a Series? Yes
Will the Reviewer Keep It In His/Her Library? no
First line: How did I get here?

"Depression is a very bad thing," Basil Fawlty told his waiter. This line was very funny in the Fawlty Towers episode where Manuel is mourning his dead rat, Basil. In real life depression isn't funny at all.

This book tells the story of a teenager who falls in love with a boy who is suffering from depression. At the end, the boy has the courage and self-awareness to break off his relationship with her because he loves her and he knows he can never give her what a true partner should. She deserves better. Good for him. She, however, probably won't let him go, since the final pages promote a sequel. Another PALS member summed up the ending up well, "Bitches be crazy."

This book does a disservice to the depressed because it makes the boy's parents the reason he is the way he is. Depression is an illness that strikes people in all kinds of family circumstances with all kinds of parents. Teenagers need to know anyone can suffer from depression, not just kids with rotten parents. Their best friend, whose parents are the nicest adults in town, could be cutting herself secretly. There should be no blame, only treatment. 

Book 31: Touched by an Alien

Title and Author: Touched by an Alien, by Gini Koch

Illustrator: none
Publisher: DAW Books, distributed by Penguin Group
Published: 2010
Genre: Science fiction
Target Audience/Age Group: Adult
Part of a Series? Yes
Will the Reviewer Keep It In His/Her Library? No
First line: What gets me is that in all the comic books and movies and even novels, whenever someone gets superpowers there's at least an eighty percent likelihood they'll use said powers for good.

This is the first book in a series. I was attracted to it by the first line on the back cover: "It was just another day in Arizona–and then the monster showed up." I was halfway through it, laughing a lot and thinking it was pretty good, when the heroine jumped into bed with a guy she’d met mere hours before and the book was ruined for me. Until that point I'd liked Katherine Katt, even though everything that was happening around her was ludicrously, ridiculously absurd (part of the book's fun). 
I'm not a prude but the sex was completely unnecessary and totally disrupted a story that was marching right along charmingly. The pace never recovered and I stopped reading it a couple chapters later. I did read the last couple of chapters, but they didn't pull me back into the book. Too bad because I thought I’d found another series that would keep me amused. I can't wait to get book 13 of Kim Harrison's Hallows series.