Review: Racing for the Sun

Racing for the SunRacing for the Sun by Amy Lane

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I seem to be on an Amy Lane kick and continued with Racing for the Sun audiobook. I found it very interesting and easy to listen to but had a bit of a problem with the main relationship. Here is where the argument of fiction vs. realism really comes into focus. When the singular romantic relationship is clearly unhealthy and one of the protagonists is deeply disturbed, can the book still be enjoyable? Well it’s up to the readers’ tastes then. I read a review with the insightful comment that if the book was M/F then a lot of readers would have really be bothered by the relationship. It’s a true statement for sure and even with M/M I was still bothered. When I tried to look at the book as sheer fiction and over the top romance, I liked it and could enjoy the dysfunctional relationship in that scope. Trying to make it seem realistic or actually healthy in any way just doesn’t work – because it’s not. So I think it’s up to the individual reader. This will likely resonate more with established Lane fans than newcomers, but that’s just a guess. Continue reading

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Review: Behind the Curtain

Behind the CurtainBehind the Curtain by Amy Lane

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It’s been a while since I sunk into an Amy Lane kick but I threw myself in over the holiday break. I started with Beneath the Stain (review coming!) and decided to continue the angstfest with BtC. While in some ways I loved BtS, I felt as though this one was more Lane-light. It was funny, easy, and quirky in all the heart-warming (and predictable) ways but I honestly kept getting dragged out of the story due to slight problems. They weren’t enough to kill the entire feel good vibe of the story but I always firmly remembered that I was reading a story of fiction and being manipulated by a person’s intentions. I don’t mind that – I read a lot and know this is true – but I don’t like to be cognizant of it while I’m reading; if that makes any sense to readers. Continue reading

Review: Who Knows the Storm

Who Knows the Storm
Who Knows the Storm by Tere Michaels
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m intrigued by this start to a new series and actually came close to speed-reading the book because I literally didn’t want to put it down. That said, I think the story is full of plot holes and does a lot of hand waving to cover up some illogical leaps. I’m on the fence about whether this actually bothers me or not because the characters are solid and the overwhelming action keeps the book moving so quickly it’s hard to stop and pick out the errors. I do hope the author slows down future books just a touch to make the plot more cohesive and solid. I’d also like it if the numerous open-ended questions from this book got answered but somehow I think they’ll always remain a mystery. Either way I’d recommend this book to fans that like a lot of action but can be very forgiving of weak plots and obvious gaps. Continue reading

Review: Patchwork Heaven

Patchwork Heaven
Patchwork Heaven by Jaime Samms
My rating: DNF

Um I usually love Jamie Samms but I feel like an alien took over her writing and this is the result. I’m struggling with this book pretty mightily and considering I’ve had a rash of bad luck with books I really don’t want to continue with this because I’m pretty confident it’s not getting any better. Then I’ll have invested a lot into a book I got no enjoyment or entertainment from. YMMV. Continue reading

Review: Off Stage: Right

Off Stage: Right
Off Stage: Right by Jaime Samms
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I had initially read the reviews on this one when I got it months and months ago and only remember that it was supposed to have a ton of angst; the kind of angst where you’re exhausted when you finish reading the book, ie. Keeping Promise Rock or Red Tainted Silence. Perhaps my tolerance for angst is higher than other readers because while there is angst in this book, I didn’t really feel like there was that much. It definitely did not exhaust me and frankly I felt there could have been quite a bit more. The story is good, as Samms is a good writer. However, I never connected to the characters so I always felt removed from the angst and it never really affected me. I never felt for nor commiserated with the characters so I actually wanted more angst and for it to be real and meaningful. That said I enjoyed the book and read it in one sitting, which is saying something considering the length. However it’s not a book I would re-read. I liked it but did not love it, even if it’s a book I think I would remember (which is hard when you read a lot and have a crappy memory). Continue reading

Review: Bone Rider

Bone Rider
Bone Rider by J. Fally
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

2.5 stars

I heard so much buzz about this book and how it made best of the year lists by numerous readers. This is definitely a case of a book being overhyped and not living up to the buildup. The basic premise is good and I quite liked Riley and McClane, even Misha. Unfortunately that’s all I liked. The plot has so many plot holes that it takes more than just suspension of disbelief, you basically have to ignore any kind of logic, rational thought, and physics. Then if you can get beyond all the problems in the plot, which is a feat in itself, the multiple POV might just kill whatever enjoyment could be had. I don’t mind multiple third person POV but I do not need to read every single character’s viewpoint of a scene that just happened and adds nothing to the story. I don’t care about the background of a tertiary character that is only minorly involved and I certainly do not need to be constantly pulled out the story again and again to be told irrelevant and uninteresting information for no reason at all. This could have been a great book and there were things I liked about it a lot, but overall the execution made my eyes and brain bleed with all the problems. How people loved this I’m just baffled. I know tastes differ but I’m legitimately in the dark about this being a “best of” book in any way. Continue reading

Review: Going Up

Going Up
Going Up by Amy Lane
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Lately I haven’t been in the mood for m/m books but I chose this because it’s Amy Lane, usually a sure fire hit for me. It was a cute, sweet enough story but kind of boring. I find Lane’s greatest books come with heaping amounts of angst. When she tries to do sweet or light, it never hits the mark for me unfortunately. This is a novella so it was quick to read and innocuous but I forgot it almost while I was reading it and never really engaged in the story. The meet-cute was sweet but it lingered in nowhere for too long and then I never really bought into the chemistry between the two men. I’d probably recommend it for someone that likes very sweet renditions of fairytales. Continue reading