MamaSylvia's Reviews

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If you're looking for something to read that will suit your taste, it helps to know what a reviewer looks for when deciding whether your taste is similar. I look for an involving story, likeable characters who feel real, and no "deus ex machina" endings or "with this clue that I'm not going to share with the reader, the hero knew whodunit" - I've been known to throw a book across the room when I run into those. I prefer a cheery feel but a few dark/gloomy series are also on my favorites list, such as Ian Rutledge. If a story doesn't start fairly quickly, or if it doesn't hold my interest, I give up on the book. Each review starts with a brief plot description, ideally without spoilers. The second paragraph is what the reviewer thought of the book and why. 1 star is awful, 5 stars is great, NR means I didn't finish it or rate it, usually because I discovered it was a genre I don't like. Hope you enjoy!

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Author: Massey, Sujata
Title: Zen AttitudeRei Shimura # 2
Genre: Murder Mystery
Rating: 2
Shimura buys an expensive antique tansu for a client that turns out to be a fake and the seller has disappeared when Shimura tries to return the tansu. A car salesman volunteers to find the seller for her, but while Shimura is meeting the salesman, the seller dies in his car.

This just didn't interest me, and I'm not sure why. Massey focuses more on the sex scenes between Shimura and her Scottish lover than anything else. None of the people felt real, and when I got a quarter of the way through and realized I didn't care what happened next, I quit.
reviewed by: Sylvia on 03/27/2011

Author: Bradley, Marion Zimmer & Ross, Deborah
Title: Zandru's ForgeDarkover: Clingfire # 2
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 1
Timing clues: during the Hundred Kingdoms

His father sends Eduin Deslucido to study at Arilinn and eventually bring down the Hasturs. Varzil Ridenow desperately wants to study at Arilinn but his father won't permit it. Carolin Hastur foresees Varzil's involvement in his future and tries to help.

Bradley, for all her writing faults, had a tremendous ability to produce involving stories. But her commendable desire to help up-and-coming writers by co-writing Darkover stories with them all too often produced yawn-producing stories. Sadly, this is an example. The basic premise has a flaw you could drive a Mack truck through: that Eduin could hide his real reason for studying laran from the exalted telepaths of Arilinn Tower. The story started so disjointedly and with such blah characters that I couldn't even get a quarter of the way through before giving up.
reviewed by: Sylvia on 03/24/2011

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