2-5

book review | Autonomous by Annalee Newitz

autonomous annalee newitz book coversAuthor: Annalee Newitz
Title: Autonomous
Series: –
Genre: Sci-fi
Pages: 303
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

From love for the book, to bitter taste in my mouth, all in one paragraph. Such was my experience with “Autonomous” by Annalee Newitz. If you don’t want spoilers, I’ll mark down the spoiler part of my opinion below.

About the Book: Simplifying, big pharma patents medications so there’s no alternatives, thus making it so only the rich elite can live long happy lives. Jack is utterly fed up by this, and so she goes into pirate business: reverse engineering medications and making them available via black market. But here’s the problem. Due to those medicines being used and abused only by such a small percentage of the population, a lot of side effects were unknown until it leaked down to public. And so there’s deaths of people who took a drug that’d make them enjoy their work more, need for extensive rehabilitation because their brain is so very hard rewired towards what gave them their fix of dopamine, the drug itself is no longer of consequence. And even though Jack didn’t create the drug, only made it public, a military bot with his partner is sent after her to detain or kill. Military bot, known as Paladin, is on fresh contract, due to being freshly manufactured, making him essentially a slave for the next ten or more years to cover the cost of his making. But things already are growing complicated between him and his homophobic partner who is the first kind person to Paladin.

My Opinion: No Spoilers – Paladin and his partner are falling in love, but his partner is absolutely stupid, and they both decide it’s better to internalize old hurts than work towards healing, making their whole relationship nasty; Now SPOILERS: bots don’t have a gender, and the only reason Paladin is known as a “he” is because he’s a military bot, and those are perceived in such a way due to their bulk and form. But given a choice of: sleep with partner – YES if woman; NO if man; Paladin makes a choice to assume a female identity. Because his partner, even having to fight random boners Paladin’s presence is inducing in him, is homophobic due to old hurts. He uses derogatory slurs, and the fact he’s falling for a sexless person with nothing but personality present, and not much of that one either – doesn’t matter. Must be a woman or I’m gay, and I can’t be a f-. Nobody cares to correct him, to help him. Nobody cares to correct or help Paladin either. They’re just let loose to lie to each other because they’re in love. Paladin is extremely enabling of him, and, in my opinion, solely because that man was the first kind man who treated Paladin as a person.

The book, otherwise pretty interesting, felt icky. I can’t give it more than 2 out of 5, for I don’t like books that teach shitty lessons. Yes, kids, internalize your feelings, and pretend to be something you’re not for the person you love, even if they clearly have some kind of unresolved issue that could be resolved, and you both could grow as people, benefiting from this gift we have called speech.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Everything, Books: Sci-Fi, Sci-Fi Books | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Fat Vampire: A Never Coming of Age Story by Adam Rex | humor lit.

fat vampire adam rex book cover blood.jpgAuthor: Adam Rex
Title: Fat Vampire: A Never Coming of Age Story
Series: –
Genre: Vampire Literature; Humor
Pages: 324
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

There are two books called “Fat Vampire” out there. Adam Rex wasn’t the one I wanted to read. Well, I paid for my mistake, so you don’t have to.

About the Book: Someone has turned a whole bunch of teenagers into vampires. Their new vampire tutors, here to teach them to be predators who don’t put the family to shame, are trying to find out who, but no one can really remember much. Except that boys mostly agree it was a hot foreigner woman. And while these elder vampires chase the wild goose, newly made vampire teens are to deal with being, well, vampire teenagers, drama in school and all that wonderful stuff. Some soon start having doubts about this whole coolness deal of being a vampire tho. Like Dug, who didn’t even grow more than peach fuzz on his face, and was overweight when he turned. And you’re now saying he has to remain this for an eternity?? Is there really no way out?

My Opinion: Plot was greatly lacking. Like a bunch of random teenage sit-com episodes barely strung together by mysterious turn of the teens that the not-turned side saw as mysterious change in those previously uncool people. Author seems it’s funny that teenagers are all dumb and don’t understand anything, but gracefully adds that adults are also dumb and don’t understand anything. Neither sets of jokes were funny, and the mocking of stereotypes made me roll my eyes, so I just hope both of them are still facing forwards. And as for characters? They’re all so painfully two-dimensional, that side-characters might not even existed.

It’s a no from me. A 2 out of 5.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Everything, Books: Funny!, Books: Horror, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Fear the Light by William Massa | Fear 1 | Dracula lit.

fear the light william massa book cover.jpgAuthor: William Massa
Title: Fear the Light
Series: Fear 1
Genre: Dracula, Vampires
Pages: 210
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

Other than those few historical classics I got recommended way back when, my attempt to read one Dracula book a month became this game of hit or miss. For instance, I truly did miss greatly with Fear the Light by William Massa.

About the Book: Someone is slaying clan vampires, starting with their master, their Creator, the oldest and most powerful vampire alive, formerly, Dracula. Now his clan cowers trapped in their master’s manor in the middle of the day. It was supposed to be a peaceful paying of respects to their late Father in Darkness and someone’s ascension to power, the clan leader position. Instead an invisible force is picking them off one by one. And everyone got a motive.

My Opinion: A poor imitation of Agatha Christi mysteries, where a group of people gets trapped somewhere, and someone’s killing them all. Shallow characters whose tragic stories did help, but otherwise didn’t make them any more interesting or missed. And that godawful trope one often sees in Dracula books, but usually he’s the one getting that stick of: the best of the best can’t beat you, but here comes a rando with a butter knife and you’re done. The End.

Mmno. 2 out of 5.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Dracula, Books: Horror, Books: Other Fiction, Mystery Books, Nosferatu Books, Thriller Books, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | The Mark by Lee Mountford | horror lit.

the mark lee mountford book coverAuthor: Lee Mountford
Title: The Mark
Series: –
Genre: Horror Literature; Thriller
Pages: 290
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

It’s hard to find good horror genre books. The Mark by Lee Mountford isn’t one of them either.

About the Book: One night a stranger breaks into Kirsty’s home, drugs her, and brands her back with strange occult symbols. Ever since she had no peace. At first she thought of the visions of nightmarish creatures as delusions or PTSD symptoms. But when her friend is attacked by the same demons, she knows she only has one option now: find the man who did this, and make him take it away.

My Opinion: This is some poor writing. Weird, unnatural feeling dialogues. Very precise, predictable sequence of actions and events. Everyone around Kirsty seem to be delusional and incompetent by some degree. For instance, the detective on the case waves the main lead off as irrelevant. While Kirsty somehow finds the man by his eyes that she saw once, many years ago. Her moral compass was firm, but lacked any logic behind it. It was there to make you feel for this woman who otherwise was bland, and lacked personality. The best thing in this whole book was the demon, because it turned out to be something akin to djinn Bartimaeus: seemingly the big bad, but is it, really?

Pass, 2 out of 5 from me.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Everything, Books: Horror, demons, Thriller Books | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

book review | The Last Hellfighter by Thomas S. Flowers

thomas flowers last hellfighter book cover vampire horror literatureAuthor: Thomas S. Flowers
Title: The Last Hellfighter
Series: –
Genre: Horror literature; Vampires
Pages: 403
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

As much as I enjoy loose reusing of old tales, The Last Hellfighter by Thomas S. Flowers was not good.

About the Book: Harker is now 144, WWI veteran, the last of the Harlem Hellfighters who fought and killed enemy and vampire alike. And the nightmare never left him, all these years. For just because you return from war, doesn’t mean the war has stopped. In fact, sometimes, the nightmare becomes reality when you finally reach the imagined safety and peace of your home. For with a mere cloud of dust evil comes to Harker’s home, and his pregnant wife Mina is killed by no other than Vampire Countess herself. He, thus, vows to slay her, no matter the price.

My Opinion: Author chose the straightest, smoothest road towards the goal. He made no risks making any turns, and didn’t bother searching for more logical sequence of events, trusting instead the good old chewed up gum that is a plot like this. Characters, Countess included, generally only served the purpose of letting Harker talk, or letting Harker get closer to Countess. And why a divine creature who lived from the dawn of time chose to be a mere countess is a secret never to be told either.

This was a bad cup of tea. I can only give a 2 out of 5, and that mostly because writing was smooth enough to get you through this.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Everything, Books: Horror, Books: Other Fiction, Gothic Books, Nosferatu Books, vampires | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

horror | “Into The Mist” by Lee Murray | Taine McKenna Adventures 1

3Author: Lee Murray
Title: Into The Mist
Series: Taine McKenna Adventures 1
Genre: Horror, Sci-Fi
Pages: 322
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

This was such a poor book, that I’ve no idea neither how I finished it, nor why…

About: An expedition with military reinforcements sets out into a deep, dark, and damp forest, often drowned in mist, in search of proof on possible gold deposits in the area. Strange things happened here before. People disappeared before too. Thus the military interference. But whatever lurks in the dark fog can’t be killed by mere bullets. It is an old creature, a predator, with great knowledge of the terrain they’re all on.

Mine: Not only was the plot dull, full of standard tropes that were painfully predictable, it lacked logic too. Characters were horribly two-dimensional, behavior set in a pattern, even when it made no sense whatsoever, even when there was no gain, neither moral points, nor monetary ones: they still did what was necessary to stall the plot, create thin sense of tension. To add to that, this is the first book in the series, so why did it feel like I’m missing something?

Sorry, but this was not my cup of tea, by far. 2 out of 5 is the best I can offer.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Everything, Sci-Fi Books | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

sci-fi | “Monster M.D.” by Leighton Lawless

2Author: Leighton Lawless
Title: Monster M.D.
Series: –
Genre: Fantasy, Sci-Fi
Pages: 366
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

I really love movie “Bright” on Netflix. It’s full of beautiful views and is packed with action. This book was recommended to me as similar to it: with the basis being a war between monsters and humans, so certain races.

About: Back in the day, when monsters got first discovered, a misinformation was spread of their condition being viral. Aka if you hang around tall people, you will become taller. This allowed humans to push monsters out into secondary class citizenship, underground. But they adjusted, adapted, and prevailed. Which would’ve been fine, since they got out of the way, if not for some scientists trying to debunk viral monsters theory.

A war is brewing. News coverage shows angles that paint monsters as aggressors. And only one man can save the day. The same man whose father got torn apart my monsters back in the day.

Mine: I normally like harem / polyamorous books, but this was just horrible. All of the characters were so shallow, so basic, so very hard-aimed to make the main hero shine in the best light. And he too was a very mediocre character, being the cliche of dorky geek growing up to be the most wanted hottie around. So while they sat around, thinking how to free this one particular monster, using a simulator to predict possible outcomes, this hottie went out to build strategies out of rat shit. Everyone waited for him to figure it out too, even if some already knew what to do and had ideas they didn’t feel like sharing. Why, you ask? Well, how else will the reader know this man is not only hot, but also smart?

This is a no. 2 out of 5, I’m out.

Categories: 2-5, About Msg2TheMing, Books: Fantasy, Fantasy Books, Sci-Fi Books | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

horror | “Plague of the Dead” by Z.A. Recht | Morningstar Strain 1

1Author: Z.A. Recht
Title: Plague of the Dead
Series: Morningstar Strain 1
Genre: Horror Literature, Zombies
Pages: 292
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

Such an ominous title. I truly expected hellish creatures, a zombie apocalypse, terror left and right. Instead I got long discussions, plain characters who always make the right decisions, and linear plot from one zombie infested point to another.

About: A virus outbreak tends to be similar every time. Isolated incident. Then isolated cluster. Leading to a few such before it starts spreading all over like wildfire. Even your common flu is scary when it spreads this way. And this? This is a zombie apocalypse, a virus to wipe humanity out.

Virus can take both living and the dead as host. The living are called “runners“, for they’re agile, fast. They’ll chase you down, often in hordes, and you better pray you’re faster than a creature with no sense of what is tired, and doesn’t need to breathe the way you do. But you can kill these the regular way. It’s those who are infected dead, or those who died infected, that are bothersome. They’re quiet, dormant until there’s anything of interest, and will slowly crawl across the desert itself to reach your yet uninfected flesh.

And then we have the backwards effect. From isolated incident to isolated clusters. To plague. To isolated clusters of survivors, to isolated, single survivors.

Mine: A group of soldiers sent to evacuate survivors hops from point to point. Each one either already infested by zombies, or is somehow not deemed worthy of them. While now and again we see them run, because ammo is long gone, most of the time we see them stand there, chatting, deciding what to do. Everyone does the right thing, everyone succeeds or becomes hero for trying. This was the bluntest story, and not in the good way, I’ve read in a long time, with very one-dimensional characters that did not help me progress at all.

Zombies are great. It’s a hard topic to mess up. You’ve a virus, you’ve horror, fear to live, fear to die. The hopelessness of easy infection and very, very difficult destruction of the infected. The book sort of had these traits, but they got buried under politics, who should do what, and why is the place they’re at – bad. 2 out of 5 from me.

Categories: 2-5, Apocaliptic Books, Books: Everything, Books: Horror, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Blood Communion” by Anne Rice | Vampire Chronicles 13

1Author: Anne Rice
Title: Blood Communion
Series: The Vampire Chronicles 13
Genre: Paranormal, Vampires
Pages: 288
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

It’s hard for me to quit series in which I invested so much time. Besides, I must admit, Vampire Chronicles got a lot of sentimental value for me. Also, I’ve read this book with hopes to see Tarquin Blackwood again, for in the previous book Lestat called out to him, but I guess Anne chose to kill him off, or forgot about him once again.

About: Lestat is slowly but surely building a vampire court. And this is his tale to his immortal brethren, of how he rid their world of their biggest enemies and became a worthy sovereign, their champion, their hero.

He calls out to all vampires, young and old, to come and pledge allegiance to him. Every one will be accepted then, protected, cared for. Even blood slaves, things genetically engineered to take pleasure from servitute, are being readied for them. A vampire utopia, with Lestat at the wheel. They will, finally, love him the way he always wanted. And to us, mere mortals who are too dumb to take these stories as more than fiction, this is a very long tale of architecture and grown men weeping to be allowed to kiss Lestat’s… ring. While he describes us what they wore doing so.

Mine: This is a very long tale, with pages after pages of vampire gatherings, were Lestat describes what he did, what he rebuilt, and how there’s abundance of everything for everyone, as long as he can describe in detail how people were dressed up. He makes sure the readers know there are closets in his palace, full of clothes and dungarees. Don’t ask me, I was confused too. But you have to know this, therefore it is repeated too. It is somehow important. And if that’s not enough to understand why everyone feels such a grave love to Lestat, he spins a tale of how he bam smack and finished off the greatest enemy of the whole vampire world, who neither had reasons to do what he did, nor had the brain capacity to defend himself against Lestat, nor seem to want to. But did have time to scream out a piece of crucial information in a language Lestat didn’t know.

I’m sorry, but I just can’t. This is a very classic Brat Prince tale, so those of you who love Lestat, will enjoy it, and that’s good. This is not my cup of tea. To me Lestat is the missing link between Edward Cullen and Vlad Dracula. Or at least he became it, for in the past I was really quite fine with him. There are a few books where he was not just tolerable, but even lovable. Seems those days are gone, and I can only give this a 2 out of 5.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Everything, Paranormal, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Chloe Neill “Midnight Marked” | Chicagoland Vampires 12

1Author: Chloe Neill
Title: Midnight Marked
Series: Chicagoland Vampires 12
Genre: Paranormal, Vampires
Pages: 361
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

One of those books I’ve read twice, back to back, because I just felt like I missed something. Turns out, it’s just that thin of a broth here. Ah well, only one more in the series left to go.

About: Someone’s casting an alchemical net over the Chicago, and it’s huge. And, judging by the supernatural corpses, it means no good either. Merit and her happy little bunch gather up, invade the library, and begin their attempts to translate what pieces they found, just to find out – they’re in a dead end. In the meantime the biggest mobster in Chicago, who held many a supernatural in his pocket, has made a move again, and this time, it seems, he wants to take Sullivan down. Sullivan, being an or becoming an idiot, is easily baited, whether he knows he’s biting bait or not. And I, the reader, sit here wondering who and where got all of these war axes from.

Mine: I have issues with witchcraft and alchemy being put into one and the same pot. Especially when author clearly mentioned FMA as one of her loved sources of inspiration or knowledge, so she knows it, she’s seen it, but she still had a witch cast an alchemy spell, and a programmer make an algorithm that correctly translates it. I’m yet to find a translator that correctly translates into English, so that’s some hardcore fantasy right there. To add to that, their obsession with food got to me. It was funny for a while, but now it’s like reading Joey Tribbiani’s from Friend’s biography: sex, food, food, sex, girls on bread! And if you think that wasn’t enough for me to get the score so low, let me add my favorite stuff: bad guys magically escape cells, the biggest and baddest kick the bucket unwillingly, Merit’s the bigger man who won’t have someone’s blood on her hands in this one particular instance, and now we’re definitely on the magical baby track. At least she confronted Sullivan about fake proposals NOT being funny.

I feel like this was the scraping of the bottom of the barrel. I guess there really needed to be thirteen books. I do hope it ends with a bang, because this one gets 2 out of 5 from me, no more.

Categories: 2-5, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Everything, urban fantasy, vampires | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.