Tuesday 28 February 2012

Review: TRUEBLOOD Season 4

TrueBlood Season 4

Alan Ball in TrueBlood Season 4, has ran away with Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse series. Some elements are still the same but the show has now become a totally different alternate version of the Sookie Stackhouse series. If the show continues to prove to be well-crafted, this might not piss off a lot of oldtime Sookie Stackhouse fans, but that is a fine line to toe. The main plot still follow a lot of the Sookie Stackhouse Book 4, Dead to the World main story arc... but, only that. And, only the bare bone structure of the major plot. Plus we see more additional elements are added into the series in the show which are not in the books at all. No matter how different the "alternate version" the show has become, one thing remains the same... Sookie Stackhouse is still too stupid to live (TSTL)! At first I thought that this Season is going to be better. In fact for the first 10 episodes Sookie was quite sane. But Episode 11 hit and Sookie runs headlong into danger so that the bad guys gets to beat up her friends using her as the lever. WTF!! I think the screenwriters of Episode 11 & 12 needs to be sacked! They're making a mess of the plot. Sookie and Debbie struggle in a hand-to-hand combat, and Sookie (a supposedly human) was able to defeat a werewolf on V??! Suspension of disbelief dropped rock bottom...

I was sooo inlove with this series with Season 2. Even Season 3. Now I think I've fallen out of love with it. Sookie's TSTL pried me away like a jack lever from my love of this series.

Overall Rating: 2.5 out of 5 cherries

True Blood Season4 Trailer:

Books In The Sookie Stackhouse series:

Monday 27 February 2012


Storm Glass by Maria V. Snyder
Book 1 of the Opal Cowan trilogy

About Storm Glass:
As a glassmaker and a magician-in-training, Opal Cowen understands trial by fire. Now it's time to test her mettle. Someone has sabotaged the Stormdancer clan's glass orbs, killing their most powerful magicians. The Stormdancers—particularly the mysterious and mercurial Kade—require Opal's unique talents to prevent it happening again. But when the mission goes awry, Opal must tap in to a new kind of magic as stunningly potent as it is frightening. And the further she delves into the intrigue behind the glass and magic, the more distorted things appear. With lives hanging in the balance—including her own—Opal must control powers she hadn't known she possessed…powers that might lead to disaster beyond anything she's ever known.
Source: Info in the About Storm Glass was taken from GoodReads at http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6080889-storm-glass on 17/04/2011.

I've noticed this annoying tendency to make the character(s) act stupid before with previous Maria V. Snyder work, but because of the fantastic story telling quality, I ignored it and continued reading. But about three quarters into the book, I couldn't forgive it anymore, it's just too irritating! The author make her characters act stupid in a blatant effort to give the story more drama and so that the heroes could show off and save the world, is just too annoying to read, even with the very wonderful and compelling author's voice! I put it down to a weak plot. It is such a pity that this author has such a good voice but writes very weak plot. The only reason this book did not get a less than one rating is it's masterful story telling quality and it's superb world building. And.... I get to re-visit old favourite characters again and that is always a plus for me.

I don't think I would be buying any more work by this author. I really do not like protagonists who are too stupid to live and survived only through sheer dumb luck.

Emperical Evaluation:
Story Telling Quality = 5
Character Development = 3
World Building = 4.5
Pace = 2.5
Plot = 0.5
Ending = 1.5

Final Say: Good voice, weak plot.

Overall Rating: 2.5 out of 5 cherries

Wednesday 22 February 2012


Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris
Book 1 of the Harper Connelly series
Read by Alyssa Bresnahan
Genre: urban fantasy

About Grave Sight:
Harper Connelly is honest, ethical and loyal - and ever since a bolt of lightning zapped her on the head, she's had an extra-special talent: she can find dead people. It's not a common-or-garden job. Some people find Harper's talent useful and fascinating, but she's getting used to most people treating her like a blood-sucking leech. She's become an expert at getting in, getting paid and getting out, fast.

When Harper and her stepbrother Tolliver, travel to the Ozarks to find a local teenager, missing, believed to be dead, they discover that someone is willing to go to great lenghts to bury a secret.

Before long Tolliver's locked away on trumped-up charges and Harper's fighting for her own life...
Source: Info in the About Grave Sight was taken from the back cover of the paperback edition.

I picked this book up just because it was available from the library. And I wanted to read another work by Charlaine Harris which is not a Sookie Stackhouse book. Charlaine Harris brought into this series the same compelling story telling quality and wonderful world building that she has always shown in the Sookie Stackhouse series. Unfortunately, Ms. Harris also seems to have brought along into this series her propensity for stupid protagonists! Quite annoying! However, I have borrowed the other books in this series already at the same time I borrowed this one, so even though Harper Connelly is too stupid to live (TSTL) like Sookie, I'll probably still listen to more books in this series. Not only because I already got the books with me but also because this book has the same addictive quality that the Sookie Stackhouse series has.

As per usual with audiobooks, I am not going to rate the pace because a listener can only listen as fast as the narrator reads.

By the way, the audiobook cover is so ugly that I wouldn't have picked this book up if it hasn't got Charlaine Harris's name in it... audiobook cover art image used in this post was taken from the internet.

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4
Character development = 3
Story itself = 3
Ending = 4
World building = 5
Cover art = 0.5
Pace = N/A (8-hour listening time)
Plot = 3
Narrator = 4

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 cherries

RCT Library
Thank you to EBSCOhost Audiobook Collection and RCT Library for letting me borrow this digital audiobook!!

FTC Disclosure:
This audiobook was borrowed from the library. No money received for this review.

Tuesday 21 February 2012


Fire Study by Maria V. Snyder
Book 3 of the Yelena Zaltana trilogy

Genre: fantasy

About Fire Study:
The apprenticeship is over—now the real test has begun.

When word that Yelena is a Soulfinder—able to capture and release souls—spreads like wildfire, people grow uneasy. Already Yelena's unusual abilities and past have set her apart. As the Council debates Yelena's fate, she receives a disturbing message: a plot is rising against her homeland, led by a murderous sorcerer she has defeated before....

Honor sets Yelena on a path that will test the limits of her skills, and the hope of reuniting with her beloved spurs her onward. Her journey is fraught with allies, enemies, lovers and would-be assassins, each of questionable loyalty. Yelena will have but one chance to prove herself—and save the land she holds dear.
Source: Info in the About Fire Study was taken from GoodReads at http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1966969.Fire_Study on 16/04/2011.

Stunning conclusion to the Study trilogy. I like this author’s “voice”. It “feels” easy to read and the story flows smoothly. The only thing I find a bit annoying is the plot. The author has the tendency to make her characters act stupid in a blatant effort to add a bit more drama to the story. I blame that more to the weak plot rather than a character development flaw. And that is the only reason that this book got a less than 5, otherwise this book is a really great read!!

Emperical Evaluation:
Story Telling Quality = 5
Character Development = 4
World Building = 5
Plot = 3
Pace = 4.5
Cover Art = 5
Ending = 5

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 cherries

Books In The Yelena Zaltana Trilogy: