Thursday, June 11, 2015

and then there was a sad...a couple dnfs--The Perfect Stranger, The Unleashing, Sharp Shootin' Cowboy

Alas, sometimes a dnf happens. Here are a few that were misses for me.

During the darkest period of her life, Landry Wells found solace in a group of bloggers who had been in her shoes and lived to tell the tale. She's shared things with her online friends that even her husband and children didn't know. Things that now, looking back, make her uneasy.

One of the bloggers is dead, victim of a random crime—or was it? Did she trust too easily; reveal too much? At the funeral a thousand miles from home, Landry is about to come face to face at last with the others. These women are her closest confidantes in the world: they understand her; they know everything about her—and one of them might be a cold-blooded killer . . .

Type: Mystery
Heat: N/A
Rating: DNF

Amazon | Book Depository | BAM | Goodreads
I didn't even make it through the first chapter before I just had to quit. The Perfect Stranger was not the book for me unfortunately. Which was a shame since it's about a group of bloggers and really looked interesting. These women are cancer survivors and now they're dealing with the murder of one of their own. And suspicious that someone they know was behind their friend's death.

I don't know. It just didn't grab my attention at all. At least the beginning parts-- which is about the woman who is murdered--is was told in 3rd person present tense and so incredibly awkward and just made me tired since my brain kept trying to rewrite as I read. I might have carried through if I'd been hooked on the story but I just didn't care enough about the storyline or the victim to make the effort to see what happened and if her killer was uncovered. I'd been wanting to try Staub but if this is her typical writing style it's definitely not for me.

Kera Watson never expected to face death behind a Los Angeles coffee shop. Not after surviving two tours lugging an M16 around the Middle East. If it wasn’t for her hot Viking customer showing up too late to help, nobody would even see her die.

In uncountable years of service to the Allfather Odin, Ludvig “Vig” Rundstrom has never seen anyone kick ass with quite as much style as Kera. He knows one way to save her life—but she might not like it. Signing up with the Crows will get Kera a new set of battle buddies: cackling, gossiping, squabbling, party-hearty women. With wings. So not the Marines.

But Vig can’t give up on someone as special as Kera. With a storm of oh-crap magic speeding straight for L.A., survival will depend on combining their strengths: Kera’s discipline, Vig’s loyalty… and the Crows’ sheer love of battle. Boy, are they in trouble.

Type: Paranormal
Heat: N/A
Rating: DNF

Amazon | Book Depository | BAM | Goodreads
I freaking adore Shelly Laurenston. She's amazing and writes the funniest quirkiest sexy shifter reads. But The Unleashing turned out to be a miss for me. Which stuns the hell out of me. But there ya go. Happens sometimes, right?

I got about 40% into this one and while I loved the concept of it that was about it. Well. I loved the dog (real dog not shifter dog lol) too. But the rest not so much. The hero and heroine--who I actually did like--were rarely on page or together so it was hard to get attached to them. There was a lot of world set up as Kera dies and is brought back a little para-normalish and has to learn a whole new lifestyle that involves gods, myths and new powers-- but I wasn't particularly captivated by it. Or any of the secondary characters. Usually Laurenston has a large cast and their zany and assholes and make you want to hurt them...but in a fun way that also leaves you LOVING them and their pain-in-the-ass selves. But this time they were just crass and obnoxious and I really didn't like any of them.

So. While I still adore Laurenston The Unleashing was a miss for me. But I'm very much in the minority on this one. Everyone else seems to really enjoy it and the new world. So if you're a fan of Laurenston it's still one to check out.


A Weary warrior… After eight years as a Marine sniper, war-scarred Reid Everett is back in his native Wyoming. He knows and loves this rugged land, so working for wildlife services to reduce the booming wolf population suits him to a T.

A Caring crusader… Wildlife biologist Haley Cooper is desperate to make a difference. Leaving the world of academia behind, she accepts a position as a wolf advocate to protect the animals she loves.

Raw attraction… Their jobs set them on a collision course, but chemistry sparks like wildfire between Reid and Haley. They’ll have to brave some rough territory if they hope to reconcile their polarizing views with a passion that won’t be denied.

Type: Contemporary
Heat: 3 out of 5
Rating: DNF at 54%

Amazon | Book Depository | BAM | All RomanceGoodreads
Unfortunately Sharp Shootin' Cowboy and I didn't get along all that well. I dnf-d at 54%. I just couldn't take the heroine anymore. Haley  was utterly unlikable, hostile, naive and just irritating on pretty much every level for me. I couldn't see a thing about her that would actually make the hero so captivated. Everything he stood for she was vehemently against and absolutely rigid in her opinions. Reid on the other hand was great and seriously hot. Climb-him-like-a-tree hot and a good guy to boot. Vane can write an amazing hero. I was all on board with him. He wasn't enough to overpower my dislike for the heroine though. Others may not have issues like I did with the heroine but I just do not get along well with characters who are extreme activists/idealists/anti-military and jump to irrational conclusions.

Examples of issues I had with the heroine--

  • On the night they met she was cold and borrowed (and kept) a jacket from his truck. He deployed, they had minimal contact and when he got back he called her up. She just happened to look in the pockets after 2 years and found a photo of a woman. So obviously he's cheating scum and she went off into a rage about how horrible he was. It was just ridiculous. 
  • While he's deployed there's news coverage of an attack. A friend who was with a guy also deployed was upset and her reply was to brush it off because they knew what they were getting into and volunteered. Who acts like that? Really? You don't give a damn that someone you know could be dying? I should have dnf-d at that point but I carried on.

I was also really bothered by the fact that Marine was not capitalized in this book like it should be. They aren't marines. They're Marines.

This won't put me off Vane's books though. I've enjoyed the others I've read from her that were part of the series. They were very easy to get lost in and were very enjoyable. This one though just didn't mesh well with me.


Have you read any of these? Did they work for you?

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