Sunday, May 06, 2018

Melanie's Week in Review - May 6, 2018

Hello! Have you missed me? I realise I haven't been around for a couple of weeks.  I was on holiday in Seville, Spain in mid April. It was a fantastic holiday. We were there during a big festival called the Feria. Every woman was dressed in full flamenco clothes and men in traditional Spanish suits while riding horses. It was great with some book reading but not much. I then over-estimated what I could finish when I got back so alas no WIR last week but I'm back now. What did I read?

So I have a confession to make. I had fully intended to tell you all about books 2 and 3 of Dan Koboldt's Gateways to Alissia series however I only managed to finish 1 of them. All will be revealed soon.

In book 2 - The Island of Deception the magician Quinn Bradley is about to make the big time. A big show in Vegas and his name in lights. His life is finally on the right track until his former colleagues at Case Global Enterprises call him back to Alissia. Bradley is asked to return to the alternate universe of Alissia to try to stop the former head of Case Global, Richard Holt from taking control.

The story is told from multiple POVs including Quinn, Logan, Mendez and Kiara who we met in the previous installment but mostly from Quinn's. The POVs give us a modicum of character development as the story is told from that character's voice. I have to say that I didn't enjoy book 2. Second books are always challenging when the first book of a series is really good as they don't always live up to expectations. This is definitely the case for the Gateways of Alissia series. This book was too much of a filler for me without a lot of substance and I really struggled to finish it. I would love to tell you, in detail what happened, but basically Quinn arrives, he travels around and Richard Holt is still in charge at the end.

I really tried to finish book 3, The World Awakening to tell you about this week but it was too much of a struggle. I got just over halfway through and it was either skip a bunch of chapters or try again next week. It came down to 'try again'. I will endeavor to finish it next week!

While I was trying to finish The World Awakening I looked for something else I could read and discovered that book 4, Gaslight, of Dannika Dark's Crossbreed series was out. It was pretty inexpensive and I knew the previous books were quick reads. As I was pretty desperate for a quick read (it was Thursday by this point!) I decided to buy it.

After the events of book 3, Deathtrap, Raven is determined to search out and punish those who have been trafficking humans to vampires while her colleagues in Keystone have their own troubles and challenges to face. When Raven goes missing and is in the hands of her former tormentor allegiances are forged and torn apart. Christian and Raven's budding relationship is put to the test and no one is sure who will survive.

The first half of the story is pretty straight forward with Raven and Christian and what happens when Raven goes missing. Had that been constructed properly that could have been the whole plot of book but Dark decided to make it more complex and a lot more confusing. The main plot was resolved halfway through and then Dark decided to add in gratuitous sex, sentiment and some minor character development. Overall it was too disjointed with POV chapters that went nowhere or didn't contribute to the overall plot. If I compare this to the other books of the series I would have to say it was a bit of hot mess.

That is it for me this week. I know it sounds like a bit of a disappointing week and my fingers are  crossed for a winner for my next Week in Review. Stay tuned to find out if I find a perfect read. Until then Happy Reading!

The Island Deception
Gateways to Alissia 2
Harper Voyager Impulse, April 11, 2017
    eBook, 352 pages
Harper Voyager Impulse, May 30, 2017
    Mass Market Paperback, 496 pages

Continuing the exciting adventures from The Rogue Retrieval, The Island Deception blends fun and mystery into a brilliant new portal fantasy from Dan Koboldt.

What happens in Las Vegas stays in Las Vegas. But what happens after you step through a portal to another world, well…

For stage magician Quinn Bradley, he thought his time in Alissia was over. He’d done his job for the mysterious company CASE Global Enterprises, and now his name is finally on the marquee of one of the biggest Vegas casinos. And yet, for all the accolades, he definitely feels something is missing. He can create the most amazing illusions on Earth, but he’s also tasted true power. Real magic.

He misses it.

Luckily—or not—CASE Global is not done with him, and they want him to go back. The first time, he was tasked with finding a missing researcher. Now, though, he has another task:

Help take Richard Holt down.

It’s impossible to be in Vegas and not be a gambler. And while Quinn might not like his odds—a wyvern nearly ate him the last time he was in Alissia—if he plays his cards right, he might be able to aid his friends.

He also might learn how to use real magic himself.

Crossbreed 4
Dannika Dark, February 16, 2018
Trade Paperback and eBook, 373 pages

Raven Black returns in another heart-pounding installment of the USA Today bestselling Crossbreed series.

Vampire trafficking is a sinister business, and nobody knows that better than Keystone. After Raven discovers hidden clues in a cold case, the group sets a trap in hopes of catching an elusive criminal. But when the plan backfires, Raven’s world is thrown into chaos, and Christian’s loyalty is put to the ultimate test.

Buried secrets come to light, and the only thing keeping Raven grounded is her insatiable thirst for vengeance. The stakes are high as they travel to a place where the landscapes are as treacherous as the immortals who live there. This time, there’s no room for mistakes.

Will Raven have the courage to tame the violence in her heart before it swallows her whole?


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