Monday, January 15, 2018

Claymore volume 9: The Deep Abyss of Purgatory

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Today's post is on Claymore volume 9: The Deep Abyss of Purgatory by Norihiro Yagi. It is the ninth the long running Claymore series, you need to have read the first eight volumes to understand the story. It is 189 pages long and is published by Shonen Jump Advanced. The cover has Clare and Galatea on the cover with swords drawn facing some unseen enemy. The intended reader is someone who likes dark plots, high action, and strong female characters. There is mild foul language, no sexuality, and lots of violence in this book. The story is told from third person close of the main character. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Clare and her fellow Claymores Galatea and Jean must battle the Awakened Beings that are holding them captive. In the process, they find their captors' true motive: by torturing the warriors, they want to force them to awaken, and join them in a gathering of Yoma. Will Clare and her comrades be able to defeat the Awakened Beings without becoming one themselves?

Review- Clare and company finish the battle with the Great Awakened Being and Clare learns where she can find Priscilla. Clare picks up another follower in Jean, number 9, when Clare helps her stop from Awakening. Now Yoma and Awakened Ones are gathering for some reason so the Organization sends twenty-four Claymores north to deal with or really to die. The Organization wants either end because are good for them but the Claymores who have been send to die are not only powerful, they are the ones asking questions and that makes the Organization nervous. I am curious about what the Organization really wants; they create Claymores to battle Yoma because normal humans cannot do that but I am sure that there is more going on here than just Yoma, Claymores, and Awakened Ones. But Yagi is still building the world and I look forward to seeing the battle that is coming and I am very curious about the bigger plot at play.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Wicked Autumn


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Today’s post is on Wicked Autumn by G.M. Malliet. It is 297 pages long and is published by St. Martin’s Press. It is the first in her Max Tudor series. The cover is dark blue with a tree in the foreground and the village behind it. The intended reader is someone who likes mysteries a little harder than the average cozy. There is mild foul language, no sex, and mild violence in this book. The story is told from third person close of the main character. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- What could be more dangerous than cozy village life in the English countryside?
Max Tudor has adapted well to his post as vicar of St. Edwold's in the idyllic village of Nether Monkslip. The quiet village seems the perfect home for Max, who has fled a harrowing past as an MI5 agent. Now he has found a measure of peace among urban escapees and yoga practitioners, artists and crafters and New Agers. But this new-found serenity is quickly shattered when the highly vocal and unpopular president of the Women's Institute turns up dead at the Harvest Fayre. The death looks like an accident, but Max's training as a former agent kicks in, and before long he suspects foul play.
Max has ministered to the community long enough to be familiar with the tangled alliances and animosities among the residents, but this tragedy surprises and confounds him. It is impossible to believe anyone in his lovely village capable of the crime, and yet given the victim, he must acknowledge that almost everyone had probably fantasized about killing Wanda Batton-Smythe.
As the investigation unfolds, Max becomes more intricately involved. Memories he'd rather not revisit are stirred, evoking the demons from the past which led him to Nether Monkslip.

Review- A good start to a different kind of want-to-be cozy mystery. This book wants to appeal to the readers of cozy mysteries so it has some of the highlights of one: a country village, Max Tudor is a vicar, and the murders are not gruesomely described. But it is not a cozy mystery. It is more main stream than that with Tudor having an edgy past as a MI5 agent, while the murders are not heavily described there is more detail than any other cozy I have read, and the villain is grayer. I did enjoy the mystery and the setting but I was expecting a cozy and that is not what I got. I think that this series would be better if it would stop trying to be a cozy and just be a ‘normal’ mystery. The mystery itself was fine and the how the plot unfolded was interesting but whenever anything non-cozy would happen I would be taken aback. It is a fine mystery but it is not a cozy mystery.

I give this a Three out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Lady Killers: Deadly Women Throughout History

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Today’s Nonfiction post is on Lady Killers: Deadly Women Throughout History by Tori Telfer. It is 366 pages long and is published by Harper Perennial. The cover is white with different objects like knives, bottles of poison, and drawings of some of the lady killers. The intended reader is someone who is interested in serial killers, true crime, untold history, and women’s history. There is foul language, talk of sex, and violence in this book. There Be Spoilers Ahead.



From the back of the book- When you think of serial killers throughout history, the names that come to mind are ones like Jack the Ripper, John Wayne Gacy, and Ted Bundy. But what about Tillie Klimek, Moulay Hassan, Kate Bender? The narrative we’re comfortable with is the one where women are the victims of violent crime, not the perpetrators. In fact, serial killers are thought to be so universally, overwhelmingly male that in 1998, FBI profiler Roy Hazelwood infamously declared in a homicide conference, “There are no female serial killers.”
Lady Killers, based on the popular online series that appeared on Jezebel and The Hairpin, disputes that claim and offers fourteen gruesome examples as evidence. Though largely forgotten by history, female serial killers such as Erzsébet Báthory, Nannie Doss, Mary Ann Cotton, and Darya Nikolayevna Saltykova rival their male counterparts in cunning, cruelty, and appetite for destruction.
Each chapter explores the crimes and history of a different subject and then proceeds to unpack her legacy and her portrayal in the media, as well as the stereotypes and sexist clichés that inevitably surround her. The first book to examine female serial killers through a feminist lens with a witty and dryly humorous tone, Lady Killers dismisses easy explanations (she was hormonal, she did it for love, a man made her do it) and tired tropes (she was a femme fatale, a black widow, a witch), delving into the complex reality of female aggression and predation. Featuring 14 illustrations from Dame Darcy, Lady Killers is a bloodcurdling, insightful, and irresistible journey into the heart of darkness.


Review- An interesting read about macabre subject. Telfer loves her subject and it shows in this book, it makes the topic so much fun to have someone who loves serial killers to write about them. I love true crime, murder, and other dark morbid things so this book was a win for me. We travel all over the world, in different times, and explore the different reasons for the crimes that these lady killers committed. Telfer does not make the women more sympathetic because most of them are definitely killers; but she makes them more understandable. Some of the women had no hope or were trapped in impossible situations but then we have the ones that did just like to kill. Killing made their life goals easier and so they killed and killed again and again. I hope that Telfer comes back to this subject because she has the right touch for this material and a good writing style. I enjoyed this book and I would love to read more from Telfer.


I give this book a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

Monday, January 8, 2018

The Water Dragon's Bride volume 3

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Today's post is on The Water Dragon's Bride volume 3 by Rei Toma. It is the first in her Suijin no Hanayome series. It is 184 pages long and is published by Shojo Beat. The cover has The Water Dragon God and Asahi on it looking at each other. The intended reader is someone who likes shojo and historical fantasy. There is no foul language, no sex, and violence in this book. The story is told from third person god with characters thoughts added in for character and plot development. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the bookUnable to return home, Asahi grows into a lovely young woman. As a priestess, she must spend time with the water dragon god for a ritual every year, but because of her connection to the water dragon god’s power, someone kidnaps her! Will Asahi be able to escape unscathed?

Review- We get a time skip in this volume of some ten years, it is not very clear but all the children from the first two volumes are grown into young adults. But Asahi's reputation has grown and now people are fighting over her. Of course that makes her mad but without her voice she cannot commutate too much. The Water Dragon decides to give it back to her. So Asahi can talk again and the Water Dragon has decided to live near Asahi. Subaru still has anger towards  the Water Dragon so we will see how that is going to play out. I do not know who is to be Asahi's romantic lead the Water Dragon or Subaru. But I liked the volume and I look forward to reading the next one.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Magic Dreams


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Today’s post is on Magic Dreams by Ilona Andrews. It is 86 pages long and is published by ACE. It is 4.5 in the Kate Daniels series. The cover is dark with the main character in her tiger form. The intended reader is someone who has read up the fourth book in series, likes urban fantasy, and fast plots. There is mild foul language, no sex, and violence in this short story. The story is told from first person perspective of Dali, the main character for this story. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book-  Alpha Pack leader Jim Shrapshire has always been the strong, silent type. But something has come over him--a magic force currently residing in one of the Pack's headquarters. Were-tigress Dali Harimau has always wished she could get Jim's attention--but now he needs her help.
Stricken with a magic-sickness, Jim needs Dali's flair for magic. And to save him, she must challenge a powerful, dark being to a battle of wits.
Includes an excerpt of Ilona Andrews's upcoming novel in the world of Kate Daniels, Gunmetal Magic
Magic Dreams originally appeared in the anthology Hexed.

Review- The first short story in the Kate Daniels series is a great one. I loved what I got to see of Dali in previous books and having her be front and center for this story was great. She is so much fun and smart and she has emotions and she is fine with feeling feelings and everything I want from a heroine. Jim does not know what to make of Dali, other that he wants her. But he is afraid to make the first move because he is her alpha. He wants her to want him not to be afraid to tell him no because of who he is. So when he needs to her help with the dangerous magic Dali jumps at the chance to prove herself and Jim finds the courage to say something to her. With all the action of a full length Kate Daniels but in a shorter format, I was very pleased with this short story.

I give this short story a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Filthy Rich: A Powerful Billionaire, the Sex Scandal that Undid Him, and All the Justice that Money Can Buy - The Shocking True Story of Jeffrey Epstein


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Today’s post is on Filthy Rich: A Powerful Billionaire, the Sex Scandal that Undid Him, and All the Justice that Money Can Buy - The Shocking True Story of Jeffrey Epstein by James Patterson, John Connolly, and Tim Malloy. It is 400 pages long and is published by Century. The cover is a picture of Epstein with his arm around someone whose face has been blacked out. The intended reader is someone who likes true crime, can handle sex crimes, and wants a fast read. There is some foul language, sex, rape, and violence in this book. The story is told from third person with first hand documents to add depth to the story.
From the dust jacket- A shocking true crime tale of money, power, and sex from the world's most popular thriller writer.
Jeffrey Epstein rose from humble origins to the rarefied heights of New York City's financial elite. A college dropout with an instinct for numbers--and for people--Epstein amassed his wealth through a combination of access and skill. But even after he had it all, Epstein wanted more. And that unceasing desire--especially a taste for young girls--resulted in his stunning fall from grace. From Epstein himself, to the girls he employed as masseuses at his home, to the cops investigating the appalling charges against him, FILTHY RICH examines all sides of a case that scandalized one of America's richest communities. An explosive true story, FILTHY RICH is a riveting account of wealth, power and the influence they bring to bear on the American justice system.
Review- An tough but interesting read about a rich man who beat the system at the cost of his victims. The writing is not great and at times I wondered where Patterson and co. were getting their opinions from but overall the story itself solid. Patterson and co. start in the middle of the story with one of his later victims, a thirteen-year-old girl who just want to make a little extra money. Instead she got more than she ever imagined. Patterson and co. follow the story about how Epstein was caught by his own carelessness and his victims coming forward. The details about their assaults are very hard to read and it turned my stomach over than once but that it just the first part of the book. The rest of the book is about Epstein, his friends, and how he made his money. We never forget he did but we are more removed from the crimes for most of the book and I needed that. Reading about what he did to those girls was almost more than I could handle but I did finish this book and it was an interesting read. If you like Law and Order: SVU then you should like this book.

I give this book a Three out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Claymore volume 8: The Witch's Maw


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Today's post is on Claymore volume 8: The Witch's Maw by Norihiro Yagi. It is the eighth in the long running Claymore series, you need to have read the first seven volumes to understand the story. It is 189 pages long and is published by Shonen Jump Advanced. The cover has Clare looking up at some unseen monster as it leaps upon her. The intended reader is someone who likes dark plots, high action, and strong female characters. There is mild foul language, no sexuality, and lots of violence in this book. The story is told from third person close of the main character. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Clare's battle with the awakened Ophelia ends with a surprising request from Ophelia. Ominous signs begin to emerge as Clare searches for Raki. Not only are the usually solitary Yoma joining forces, they appear to be preparing for battle. More mysteriously, Clare is taken captive by a male Awakened Being and held in a dungeon with other Claymores. Who are her captors, and what do they want? 

Review- Most of this volume is Clare getting pulled into a battle with a mysterious monster that is killing other Claymores but it does start with her battle with Ophelia. Her final battle with Ophelia is interesting because it make Ophelia more human than she had been when she was a Claymore. She does not want to live as an Awakened Being but she is not going to just die, Ophelia wants Clare to prove that Clare as what it will take to get to Priscilla and kill the One Horned Monster. The rest of the manga is a big mystery about what is going on with the Awakened Being who is trying to make Claymore become Awakened Beings. I like where the series is going with more Claymores and Clare interacted and growing in character and power. A solid volume that promises more of all the things I am enjoying in this series.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money.