Sunday, June 30, 2013

Summer Lovin' Read-A-Thon!

The Summer Lovin’ Readathon is a week-long readathon event hosted by seven independent bloggers! (Oh, Chrys!, Tumbling Books, Effortlessly Reading, Love Life Read, Shelf Addiction, Read Sleep Repeat, and Reviewing Wonderland)

Spend the week reading at your own pace, when and how you want too. There will be daily challenges for awesome prizes and opportunities to get points toward the Grand Prize Packs.

As if that weren’t enough – the week will end with a 24-hr marathon readathon! Twitter parties, mini-challenges, games, prizes given EVERY HOUR, and more chances to get points toward the Grand Prize Packs.

Sign-ups will be open through July 6th. I’m in, are you?!

Hey, guys! I wasn't going to get back to the blog until after my PC goes in and gets fixed next week, but I saw a post about this read-a-thon and couldn't resist getting involved. :) This seems like just the thing I need as I dive back into blogging after taking the (rather long) break that I have this spring / summer, so I'm going to do my best to use it to get some books read and reviewed. :) 

My Goals For The Summer Lovin' Read-A-Thon: 

Read at least three books. I'll be listing nine: six for the week and three for the marathon read. But I know there isn't much likelyhood I'll get to them all--they're there for the sake of choice. I'd love to read five, but since life can be hectic, I'll list three and see how the week goes. :) 

Do each of the daily participation posts. Yes, I do get to "cheat" a little in that I'm sitting down to write some of those today, but I love this concept and the fact that the details are there for me to be able to do that. I think this is a really neat addition to this read-a-thon and I want to make sure I do it. Also, by writing them now I'm freed up for reading and visiting others during the week. :) 

Take part in at least three challenges. Oh, c'mon... You guys know me! I'm probably going to take part in all the challenges. But as long as I do at least three I'll call this a successful week--I know life can throw crazy stuff at me without warning (real life *or* my characters!) so I need to make sure I keep my goals managable. 

Take part in the Greased Lightnin'! twitter party. I love twitter parties. I think I've talked about this before. They make me a lot less nervous about just randomly chatting on there--I don't feel like I'm cutting in on people. So yes, I can't say I'll be there for the whole thing (It's 24 hours long.) but I'll be doing my best to spend some time on that. 

Come back tomorrow for my "Class Orientation" post, where I'll be sharing a bit about myself, as well as showing you the fabulous books that I've chosen for this read-a-thon. :) 

Friday, June 7, 2013

Review: Drip Drop Teardrop by Samantha Young

If you've known me for any length of time as a reader, a writer or a friend, you probably know I am obsessed with stories where any type of 'minion of Death' character is going to fall in love. Grim Reapers? Hades? Demons? People who have taken this job for immortality? Basically it sets off a big checkered flag that reads: "Kat, over here!" The Hades and Persephone myth was my introduction to mythology and pretty much any flavor of that concept (see list above) is bound to draw me like a moth to a flame.

So of course when I read the synopsis for Drip Drop Teardrop, I absolutely had to read it. If there's anything I like as much as romantic portrayals of beings who manipulate death (God that sounds creepy when I write it, but it's true!) its a fresh take that will introduce a new mythos for me to follow.

Here's what I can tell you: Drip Drop Teardrop isn't perfect, but it sucked me in and I really enjoyed it. Want all the details? Read on. :)

Even Death Can Fall in Love...

Avery hasn’t had it easy.

When she was ten years old her parents died in a car crash. Now nine years later her Aunt Caroline is the only family she has left. And Caroline is dying. So when Death comes knocking (quite literally) in the form of the damaged and dangerous, Brennus, Avery makes a deal with the reaper in order to save Caroline.

Brennus is an Ankou.

One of the many, once mortal men and women, who were given the choice to become an immortal in exchange for ferrying the dead over into their afterlife. Nine years ago Brennus took Avery’s parents and tried to take Avery, but she fought him and won. Amazed by her strength Brennus followed Avery and has watched over her. Now he knows Avery is the one to offer him freedom from his obligation to the dead.

And he’ll stop at nothing to have her.

On the whole, Drip Drop Teardrop was a pretty solid novella and I had a great time reading it. The writing style flowed nicely and didn't get into my way when connecting with the characters or learning about the mythology that Samantha Young's Ankou worked under. The majority of the story's events came along at a good clip so I wasn't bored. There was the right balance of description / action / dialogue so things felt real without being bogged down. 

I geninely enjoyed both Avery and Brennus. Avery had enough spunk, despite the draw between her and Brennus, that I wasn't screaming "What's wrong with you?" over her attraction to him. (Her later determination to resist this, especially at one point where her reasoning wasn't clear enough for me, did induce a "What the hell are you doing?" moment, though.) This is a pretty quick paced connection, probably unsuitable for people who hate insta-love. It worked fine for me because the mythology and Avery and Brennus' history fit with it, and I'm fine with a story that uses stuff like that to move romance along. 

So, what were my problems? Well, there's one chapter where half of it was a pierce of internal monologue that we later learn is Avery writing a journal entry. Um, no. Yuck. Bad way to get emotions across, under these circumstances, was bad. There was Brennus' wife from his mortal life, who had also wound up as an Ankou. She might have worked if this were a full novel and all these characters had more page-room for development, but that was not the case here and her inclusion made me want to head-desk. Lastly, there was the absolutely deus ex machina ending, which almost made me use my kindle as a frisbee. This was a problem for two reasons: (1) the aforementioned deus ex machina and (2( the fact that we never actually saw the heroine learning the knowledge she needed to make the thing actually make sense. (Which is why I ended up calling it deus ex machina.) 

Despite any complaints, I had a good time with Drip Drop Teardrop and I can't wait to read Sarah's story in the sequel. Anyone who likes this kinda story as much as I do should definitely take a look, because this is a pretty enjoyable ride as long as you're willing to forgive its faults. I wish this had been a bit longer and more developed, because what was good here was great, and what was broken (in my opinion) was stuff that more time and development could have likely fixed. 

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