Thursday, December 4, 2014

Really Short Reviews: Short Fiction by Nicole Peeler, Kim Harrison and Amanda Carlson

I've decided I like this Really Short Review format for novellas and short stories. (I hope you like it too.) Short fiction doesn't get publicized or reviewed as much as full length books, and maybe some readers don't even know these works are out there. So here's a collection reviews of recent releases from some of my favorite series. Have you read any of these or did you discover something new? Let me know in the comments.
The Hound of Bar Harborville (Truniverse #1)
by Nicole Peeler
Release: October 15, 2014
Links: Goodreads Amazon
My Really Short Review: I'm so excited that Nicole Peeler returned to the world of Jane True for this series of humorous shorts stories. This first murder mystery I've been calling "True meets Clue."

Away from their twins for the first time, Jane and Anyan plan a romantic weekend in a boutique hotel. But events conspire to keep them from getting down to business, starting with their room not being ready when they arrive. Then there's the naked dead man in their bed. Jane sets out to discover how he died and how he wound up in their room, while Anyan's on a mission involving beds and nakedness of a different sort.

The story is told from Anyan's point of view, which I enjoyed. I was surprised by how modern he sounded in some spots, but he's also very much a typical guy. It's nice to see him happy with Jane after all the trauma of their last book. The story is kind of silly, but it's a lot of fun. Next up in this series is The Ryu Morgue, told from Ryu's POV, which is out Dec. 16.


Sudden Backtrack (The Hollows #13.1)
by Kim Harrison
Release: October 28, 2014
My Really Short Review: This is an odd little story. It's quite short and tells the story of how the elves were cursed from Al's POV. That act began the rebellion that led to the demons' independence and the elves fleeing the Ever After. It also gives some perspective on his attitude toward the elves and their goddess.

What I found most interesting is that it shows Newt before she lost her memory and hints at what she looked like. I really had to think about what I know about her from the last two books and try to figure out what was happening to her. It's not entirely clear, not that anything ever is when Newt is involved. The story also seemed to suggest a relationship between Newt and Al that I never thought was hinted at in the books.

I would have liked to have a present day (or present as of the end of The Witch With No Name) context to put the story in. Al's views seem to have changed dramatically by the end of the series and I wanted to know how he felt about what happened. But it's not a flashback, it's more like a prequel. I think it raises as many questions as it answers, but I'm curious if when I re-read the series - since I'm sure I will at some point - if I'll feel differently.
 3 1/2 stars
All In (Sin City Collectors #5)
by Amanda Carlson
Release: November 17, 2014
My Really Short Review: I've been loving the Sin City Collectors series, but this was not my favorite installment. All In follows succubus Ginger, who heads the supernatural intelligence agency Dossier, and werewolf Luke, brother of Diesel who was the hero of Carlson's last novella, as they try to bring Ginger's brother Damien in to the Collectors for questioning.
The story starts after they've been on the trail for about a month and have finally found his hideout. During their time together, they've developed feelings for each other, but because of their complicated pasts neither believes that the other one could feel the same. There's a lot talking and a lot of angst on both sides but not much action until the very end of the story. Carlson usually writes great fight scenes, so that was disappointing. I also would have liked to learn more about Dossier.
I do enjoy getting to see the couples from the previous stories and there are some nice moments with both of them. And the stage is set for the next story featuring Raoul, Ginger's right hand man, so I'm hoping to see some of that "spy stuff" from him.

3 stars


1 comment:

  1. I felt the same way about Harrison's story. I wish we had Al's "present day" take on things. It was interesting to see Newt before the crazy.

    Can't wait to read All In. I've really enjoyed this series so far. All the stories have been very cute.


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