Thursday, February 16, 2012

Odds, Ends, and Beginnings



First....a couple of quickie reviews.....

Jillian's Job by Fran Lee

I was looking for a quick, hot read for Valentine's Day. This was quick. It was hot. It was also sort of ridiculous. For almost the whole story the heroine is insisting that she "hates" her boss, and her boss is insisting that he married her so he wouldn't lose his assistant (and of course to have easy access to round-the-clock hot sex) and then on the last page, they're all "We love each other!"

O-kay.

It is a cute, hot read, but the premise is ridic-a-less! I know....why am I whining about an erotic storyline? I'm an idiot!

Grade: B-

Changeling Moon by Dani Harper

This is my first book by this author, and it won't be the last. I was soooooo not expecting this. I had no idea Harper was such a good writer! I have been getting back into the whole werewolf thing lately, and this work is an excellent addition to the genre. The story is extremely well-written, with a tight, intriguing storyline. The characters were superb. There was just enough info about the werewolf pack and history to be interesting, but without the typical info dumps we sometimes get in these types of paranormal books. The pacing was spot-on, and I loved both the hero and heroine. Hot, sexy alpha werewolf.....sweet!

Grade: A

And finally, about "beginnings"......

There is nothing as formulaic as the "make-over" theme in romance. But here's the deal. Sometimes, it works. And sometimes, it falls flat on its fitted-sheath-and-stiletto-heels ass. But it's never, never, never going to work if it happens in the first couple of chapters. The only way it will work is if we see the heroine in her BEFORE state for a while, and get used to her frumpy clothes and see why she wears them, and how they are part of her comfortable old life. And then, maybe half-way through the story????? or at the end????? but NOT at the beginning of the book, she can have this big transformative moment and become Cinderella. If you put the make-over scene at the beginning of the book, the reader doesn't give a shizz.

Thus ends Penelope's rant for Thursday.....

Have a great day!
Penny

7 comments:

Julia Rachel Barrett said...

Hmmm. You know me, I'm not totally into the makeover trope. Just not my style. I don't know why. I was never a big Cinderella fan either. Much prefer Sleeping Beauty.

Penelope said...

Oh, holy moly! I had to DNF a book this week. The make-over scene was right at the beginning of the book. I was all......huh? The book just started!!!!!!!

I love Sleeping Beauty, too. That would be a good one to update!

Tom Stronach said...

Don't read much 'romance' unless there is a bit in one of the arm ripping off blow em to hell books that I read, don't need to.

There's enough romance in my life an example of that is when Ishbel tells me, "yes you're beautiful, especially when you are sleeping" I like to think that she is staring at my manly good looks and that I am so handsome that she can't believe her luck and therefore lies awake just looking at how handsome I am.

What do ya think

Penelope said...

Tom.....I like mystery/action/thriller books w/ a bit o' romance in them, too. In fact, I just wrote a review for Restless in the Grave (by Dana Stabenow) --I think you would like the Liam Campbell series...it's about an Alaskan state trooper and his trials and tribulations. With a bit o' romance. Love them!

Also, I think Ishbel is being completely serious. :^) And romantic!

Tom Stronach said...

Penny, I shall put those books on my reading list...

I suspect it is probably my snoring that keeps her awake glaring at me....

JenM said...

Changeling Moon was a big surprise to me also. I picked up on sale and just tore through it. Now I want the rest of the books. That's a perfect example of why putting the first book in a series on sale is a great marketing idea.

Penelope said...

Jen...me, too. I got it on sale and ignored it for a while. Then I finally read it and I was flabbergasted by how good it was.