needs more demons?

irreverent opinions on books

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Entries Tagged as 'r-author'

Rainbow Rowell: Fangirl

16 Mar 2014 · No Comments

Fangirl has a soundbite to make it easy to describe: it’s the YA novel about the girl who writes fanfic. Like most soundbites this is terribly and unfairly reductive; it’s about a whole lot of other things, like growing up, coping with your own neuroses and your family’s unique miseries. It’s nuanced and surprising, often [...]

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Tags: f-title · r-author · young adult

Laura Resnick: Disappearing Nightly

09 Nov 2013 · No Comments

I liked Disappearing Nightly, but I have a bit of trouble explaining why. It’s a light contemporary fantasy with a whodunnit flavor and a dash of romance. It partakes of several genres, and I didn’t think it succeeded particularly well at any one of them. A mystery novel, for instance, needs a bit more misdirection [...]

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Tags: d-title · fantasy · mystery · r-author · romance

Willo Davis Roberts : The View from the Cherry Tree

01 Jun 2013 · No Comments

For better or worse, I found myself thinking of The View from the Cherry Tree as sort of what-if-Ralphie-of-A-Christmas-Story-witnessed-a-murder? story. (The novel substantially predates the film, of course, but post-dates the Jean Shepherd novel from which the film drew, so maybe the association isn’t entirely spurious. (Then again, it could as easily be what-if-Dennis-the-Menace-witnessed-a-murder?) The [...]

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Tags: children's · mystery · r-author · v-title

Adam Roberts: Jack Glass: The Story of a Murderer

10 May 2013 · No Comments

There was a lot I appreciated about Robert’s elegantly crafted Jack Glass, but I definitely didn’t think it succeeded at everything it set out to do.
The middle section of the novel, for instance, offers a classically structured whodunnit and — skirting spoilers — I think Roberts is trying to get the reader so far in [...]

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Tags: j-title · r-author · science fiction

Dia Reeves: Slice of Cherry

06 Feb 2013 · No Comments

I liked Reeves’ first novel Bleeding Violet so much that I ordered her second in advance of its publication date. And then I didn’t read it until now thanks to a quandary familiar to me: I didn’t want the new book to be the same as the one I just read, but I wanted to [...]

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Tags: fantasy · horror · r-author · s-title · young adult

Daniel Radosh: Rapture Ready!

09 Jul 2012 · No Comments

Rapture Ready!, an outsider’s tour of many facets of evangelical Christian culture was entertaining and informative, lucidly and sometimes even beautifully written. I already knew about the existence of the near-oxymoronic music genre Christian black metal and Left Behind novels, but I had no clue about Christian wrestling or superheroes like Bibleman. Depending on [...]

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Tags: r-author · r-title · religion

Rick Riordan: The Lightning Thief

24 Jan 2012 · No Comments

It took a while for The Lightning Thief to win me over. For much of its length, it felt too nakedly calculated to appeal to Harry Potter fans (with the interesting, but hardly unique, added dimension of a basis in Greek mythology). The character dynamic between Percy Jackson and his pals seemed a bit too [...]

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Tags: children's · fantasy · l-title · r-author

Philip Reeve : Predator’s Gold

30 Sep 2011 · No Comments

Mortal Engines left me so eager for more that I scoured all three bookshops in the town we were staying in for a copy of the sequel, Predator’s Gold, even though I suspected I was setting myself up for disappointment. Sequels aren’t usually as good, perhaps particularly in genre fiction, in part because the critical [...]

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Tags: p-title · r-author · science fiction · young adult

Philip Reeve : Mortal Engines

23 Sep 2011 · No Comments

Reeve’s young adult steampunk novel is set in a dystopian future where steam-powered cities literally roam the blasted earth on enormous tractor treads, devouring each other in the practice of “municipal Darwinism.” After you get past the willing suspension of disbelief required by the premise, Reeve’s world-building has a lot of lovely little details. There’s [...]

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Tags: m-title · r-author · science fiction · young adult

Michael Reaves and Steve Perry : Death Star

26 Jul 2011 · No Comments

The first part of Reaves and Perry’s novel is set immediately before the original 1977 Star Wars movie; the second section is set during the time frame of the film, and interleaves most of the scenes set on the Death Star into the new story. (It’s a bit structurally similar to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are [...]

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Tags: d-title · p-author · r-author · science fiction