Fifth Grave Past the Light by Darynda Jones (Reread)

Book Review

 


Fifth Grave Past the Light (Charley Davidson, #5)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Mystery, Urban Fantasy, Audiobook

Book Series: Charley Davidson #5

Released: 7/9/2013

Pages: 339  Price: $39.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Charley Davidson isn’t your everyday, run-of-the-mill grim reaper. She’s more of a paranormal private eye/grim reaper extraordinaire. However, she gets sidetracked when the sexy, sultry son of Satan, Reyes Farrow, moves in next door. To further complicate matters, Reyes is her main suspect in an arson case. Charley has vowed to stay away from him until she can find out the truth…but then dead women start appearing in her apartment, one after another, each lost, confused, and terrified beyond reason. When it becomes apparent that her own sister, Gemma is the serial killer’s next target, Charley has no choice but to ask for Reyes’s help. Arsonist or not, he’s the one man alive who could protect Gemma no matter who or what came at her. But he wants something in return. Charley. All of her, body and soul. And to keep her sister safe, it is a price she is willing to pay.
Charley Davidson is at it again in the sexy, suspenseful, and laugh-out-loud funny fifth installment of the New York Timesbest selling series.

My Review:

Oy,  I had forgotten some of the truly gruesome things that happen to Charley over the years.  Here I thought listening to the graphic sex scenes was awkward, listening to a character being tortured is just as challenging.  Otherwise, I continue to enjoy this reread listen to one of my favorite series.

I continue to be surprised by how much I don’t remember from the earlier books.  I think once we get to book ten, eleven, and twelve I will be more familiar with what is going on as they are more recent releases.  I also continue to focus on subplots more than I did the first go around as I already know how Charley and Reyes’s relationship is going to play out.  While I love Charley and Reyes other characters are quickly becoming almost equal in my adoration.  Uncle Bob in this book especially tugged at my heart.

I have one more book downloaded and then I have to wait for my turn at book 7 which might be a nice spot to take a breather for a book or two.   It is going to be a long time to wait until Fall 2018 for the last book so there is no hurry.  This is such a great series I highly recommend it for whatever format you can get your hands on.  A smoking hot male love interest, humor that has you laughing in public, and touching moments that leave you in tears.  This series has it all.

My Rating: 5 Stars

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Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet by Darynda Jones (Reread)

Book Review


Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet (Charley Davidson, #4)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Mystery, Audiobook

Book Series: Charley Davidson #4

Released: 10/30/12 by St. Martin’s Press

Pages: 308 Price: Audiobook $39.99

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Sometimes being the grim reaper really is, well, grim. And since Charley’s last case went so awry, she has taken a couple of months off to wallow in the wonders of self-pity. But when a woman shows up on her doorstep convinced someone is trying to kill her, Charley has to force herself to rise above…or at least get dressed. It becomes clear something is amiss when everyone the woman knows swears she’s insane. But the more they refute the woman’s story, the more Charley believes it.
In the meantime, the sexy, sultry son of Satan, Reyes Farrow, is out of prison and out of Charley’s life, as per her wishes and several perfectly timed death threats. But his absence has put a serious crimp in her sex life. While there are other things to consider, like the fact that the city of Albuquerque has been taken hostage by an arsonist, Charley is having a difficult time staying away. Especially when it looks like Reyes may be involved.
Just when life was returning to normal, Charley is thrust back into the world of crime, punishment, and the devil in blue jeans in this hilarious fourth installment in the New York Times bestselling series.

My Review:

Continuing to enjoy my reread listen to the Charley Davidson series.  Also getting a ton of knitting done because all I want to do is sit and listen and laugh.  Of course, there are plenty of moments that have me in tears and blushing at what is being read to me.  These books are definitely not safe for work or commute in public transit without headphones.

Book four brought me quite a few surprises which shocked me in how much I did not remember.  There were one or two scenes in there that I had completely forgotten.  I remember zipping right through this series when I read it the first time so perhaps I should reread more of the book I finished in a day because in my rush to read them I missed a lot apparently.

Listening to this book and the last one so close together made me realize there is a bit of a plot hole with a character that had died in the previous book.  I could have sworn he was dead-dead but he ended up showing up again in this book.  There was a little explanation as to what happened but it felt a little fishy. Will need to go and read other’s reviews about this character and see if anyone else feels the same.  Don’t get me wrong I’m happy they are still in the book it is just something feels off about what happened.

I have plenty of knitting to go, knitting a blanket for my husband, and plenty of books to go! Was a little disappointed that there was no author interview at the end of this book but I guess I can look some up on YouTube if I want to hear more of what Ms. Jones has to say about the series…

My Rating: 5 Stars

Third Grave Dead Ahead by Darynda Jones (Reread)

Book Review

 


Third Grave Dead Ahead (Charley Davidson, #3)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Audiobook, Mystery

Book Series: Charley Davidson #3

Released: 1/31/12 by St. Martian’s Press

Pages: 310  Price: $39.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Paranormal private eye. Grim reaper extraordinaire. Whatever. Charley Davidson is back! And she’s drinking copious amounts of caffeine to stay awake because, every time she closes her eyes, she sees him: Reyes Farrow, the part-human, part-supermodel son of Satan. Yes, she did imprison him for all eternity, but come on. How is she supposed to solve a missing persons case, deal with an ego-driven doctor, calm her curmudgeonly dad, and take on a motorcycle gang hellbent on murder when the devil’s son just won’t give up?

My Review:

Wow.  I’m surprised at how much I did not remember in this book.  Near the end, I was totally all ‘Wait a minute, what the hell just happen?!?’.  It is a good thing I have the next audiobook all downloaded and waiting because if I had to wait my turn for the next book I might have a fit.

This reread continues to be a delight to listen to and if you are a fan of the series I highly suggest getting your hands on the audiobooks.  There was another author interview at the end of this book and to gain that insight into Ms. Jones’s development of the characters and plot is so worth it.

I really don’t want to give anything away but Garrett’s storyline really tugs on the heart in this book.  We also meet Artemis in this book which was both sad and fun.  Again there are characters here that have dropped out of the plot by book 12 that I’m having a difficult time remembering their importance.  I am also surprised at how little Reyes and Charlies’s relationship is grabbing my attention.  I know how most of that plays out, having read the series already, and I am able to focus on some of the other characters more.  Don’t get me wrong I still like Reyes but I feel like I am able to enjoy some of the supporting roles more now.

My Rating: 5 Stars (No Change)

Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones (reread)

Book Review

 


Second Grave on the Left (Charley Davidson, #2)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Mystery, Urban Fantasy, Audiobook

Book Series: Charley Davidson #2

Released: 8/16/2011 by St. Martian’s Press

Pages: 307 Price: $39.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

If you hang around with dead people, life can get pretty complicated. Take it from Charley Davidson, part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper. Complicated is her middle name. The deceased find her very sparkly. Demons find her irresistible. And one entity in particular wants to seduce her in every way possible.
When Charley and Cookie (her best friend/receptionist) have to track down a missing woman, the case is not quite as open and shut as they anticipate. Cookie’s friend Mimi disappeared five days earlier. Mimi then sends Cookie a cryptic message telling Cookie to meet her at an nearby coffee shop. The coffee is brewing, but Mimi’s still missing. There is, however, a clue Mimi left on the bathroom wall: a woman’s name. Mimi’s husband explains to them that his wife had been acting strange since she found out an old high school friend had been murdered. The same woman whose name Mimi had scribbled on the bathroom wall.
Meanwhile, Reyes Alexander Farrow (otherwise known as the Son of Satan. Yes. Literally) has left his corporeal body and is haunting Charley. He’s left his body because he’s being tortured by demons who want to lure Charley closer. But Reyes can’t let that happen. Because if the demons get to Charley, they’ll have a portal to heaven…well, let’s just say it wouldn’t be pretty.
Can Charley handle hot nights with Reyes and even hotter days tracking down a missing woman? Can she keep those she loves out of harm’s way? And is there enough coffee and chocolate in the world to fuel her as she does?

My Review:

I decided to continue with my reread listen of the Charley Davidson Series when I found the next three books available through my library.  It is also way cold outside and I’m stuck at home babysitting running water pipes so they don’t freeze.  Throw in a new knitting project and you have the perfect winter afternoon activity.

I continued to enjoy book two and stand by the initial review of the title.  Of course, there isn’t anything like reading a great story for the first time but I do think that this reread is worthwhile if nothing else it is a great refresher for the upcoming last book releasing later this year.  I am surprised at how much I do remember because nothing was a big surprise as I know what the mysteries being solved in this title are already.  The cliffhanger at the end, however, is significantly less annoying when you know what is going to happen next.

There were some characters that have kind of fallen away in later books like Reyes high school friend.  I will need to pay attention in the next book to see what happened to him and his family.  I continue to enjoy the narrator of this book and appreciate how she alters her accent for each of the characters.  A bonus at the end of this audiobook is an author interview with Ms. Jones which was way fun and I highly recommend borrowing a copy of this book simply to listen to that.

I didn’t really notice anything I missed in my first read but I was working out a new blanket pattern and might have missed some while working.  It is both frustrating and interesting to be with Charley back at the beginning of her journey.  I’m torn between wanting to get to the good stuff and wanting to savor the ride.  I have two more books on deck and then might take a break for a title or two.  We will see I have almost a whole year to get through 12 books so there is no hurry.

My Rating: 5 Stars (Unchanged)

First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones (reread)

Book Review

 


First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson, #1)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Audiobook

Book Series: Charley Davidson #1

Released: 2/1/2011 by St. Martin’s Press

Pages: 310  Price$44.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

This whole grim reaper thing should have come with a manual.
Or a diagram of some kind.
A flow chart would have been nice.
Charley Davidson is a part-time private investigator and full-time grim reaper. Meaning, she sees dead people. Really. And it’s her job to convince them to “go into the light.” But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (like murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice. Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she’s been having about an entity who has been following her all her life…and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely. But what does he want with Charley? And why can’t she seem to resist him? And what does she have to lose by giving in?
With scorching-hot tension and high-octane humor, First Grave on the Right is your signpost to paranormal suspense of the highest order.

My Review:

I discovered this series shortly after starting Read What I Like blog and if you would like to read the original review of this book then you can do so here. I continue to stand by that review and will focus most of this abbreviated re-read review on the format (audiobook).  I have decided to listen to the entire series in audio format in anticipation of the last book, #13, in 2018.  I will try to think of a different aspect for future re-read reviews for this series. A couple of ideas I have are what I missed the first time or clues to future events.  We’ll see what I decide when the time comes to write those reviews. But like I said this first review will focus on reading vs listening to this story.

I had been planning on rereading this series for some time and planned to do so in print.  What changed is that I was going to Chicago for a three-day getaway and my husband came down with the flu and couldn’t go.  I needed something to listen to while bumming around town, shopping and riding the El.  I needed a book that I knew I liked because I did not want to be searching for a replacement title while I was away.  I came across this title and thought it was a perfect fit.  I crossed my fingers and hoped for a good narrator.

I absolutely loved this book in audio format.  Loved it.  It loses nothing and is just as enjoyable as reading it in print.  The narrator is a good choice for the voice of Charley and she does a great job of differentiating her tone and accent for the supporting cast.  Cookie does sound way different from I imagined but I she still works for me.  The humor is still just as funny and I had to remind myself while listening that I must not laugh out loud in public.  The steamy parts were a little awkward to listen to while carrying on in public.  Walking around wicker park listening to some pretty hot action going on in my ears made me grateful for my wireless ear buds.   The serious parts also still grabbed me and I found myself with tears streaming down my face in a section near the end.  Fortunately, that didn’t occur until the car ride home from the train station.

This is such a fun book no matter the format.  If you are looking for something that will run the gambit of emotions from hilarity to somber then I highly recommend it to you.  I look forward to rereading this series.

My Rating: 5 Stars (no change)

The Invasion of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

Book Review

 


The Invasion of the Tearling (The Queen of the Tearling, #2)Book Genre: Fantasy, Dystopian, Audiobook

Book Series: The Queen of the Tearling #2

Released: 6/9/2015

Pages: 515  Price: $79.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis: 

Kelsea Glynn is the Queen of the Tearling. Despite her youth, she has quickly asserted herself as a fair, just and powerful ruler.

However, power is a double-edged sword, and small actions can have grave consequences. In trying to do what is right – stopping a vile trade in humankind – Kelsea has crossed the Red Queen, a ruthless monarch whose rule is bound with dark magic and the spilling of blood. The Red Queen’s armies are poised to invade the Tearling, and it seems nothing can stop them.

Yet there was a time before the Crossing, and there Kelsea finds a strange and possibly dangerous ally, someone who might hold the key to the fate of the Tearling, and indeed to Kelsea’s own soul. But time is running out…

Erika Johansen’s fierce and unforgettable young heroine returns in this dazzling new novel of magic and adventure, set in the beguiling world of the Tearling.

My Review: *I finished this book on vacation and could not write this review for three days, I probably forgot stuff*

I listened to the first book in this trilogy in November and was pleasantly surprised at how good it was.  It was exactly what I was in the mood for at the moment so I put the next book on hold and mid-December I was able to download this title.  I listen to the first half at home over several short sessions and the last half in a marathon listen on my way to Chicago (on a train that was delayed three hours…).

Let’s start with the criticism first, like in my last review.  Kelsea’s appearance resurfaces as a significant plot point and I still find it annoying.  I began to see why and won’t go into details so I don’t spoil anything for you.  However, just because I get the why does not mean I accept the focus on her looks is acceptable.  The other problem I had was not necessarily the book’s problem but perhaps the format.  This book is divided between flashbacks to before the Tearling and current day Tearling.  I think in print the division between the two sections would have been easier to distinguish.  I wish they would have given the listeners a clue as to when the flashbacks start.

Moving on to what I enjoyed about book two… I was thrilled to have the flashback sections despite how dark, gritty, and violent they could be.  We learn a lot about the state of the world before the Tearling began and all I have to say is WOW.  I could totally see our society becoming this world. Easily.  At times it feels like we might be a quarter of the way there already.  The other plot line that I also found interesting revolved around the relationship between Kelsea and the Church.  This was super juicy and loved how Kelsea handled them.  I can’t remember his name but the priest that was “assigned” to the castle but his role continues to hold my interest and the way book two leaves his character has me worried about him.

The book definitely took a darker turn in book two and has some pretty graphic moments that might be triggers for some people.  The biggest being domestic violence and rape, if those are a difficult subject matter for you then you might not want to read this book. If you can handle it then this was a good read and I enjoyed it quite a bit.  I am eagerly awaiting the last book in the trilogy to find out how this all ends.

My Rating: 4 Stars

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

Book Review

 


Twilight (Twilight, #1)Book Genre: Romance, Paranormal, YA, Fantasy, Audiobook

Book Series: Twilight #1

Released: 9/6/06 by Little, Brown and Company

Pages: 498 Price: $19.99 Hardcover

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library.

Book Synopsis:

About three things I was absolutely positive.

First, Edward was a vampire.

Second, there was a part of him—and I didn’t know how dominant that part might be—that thirsted for my blood.

And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him.

In the first book of the Twilight Saga, internationally bestselling author Stephenie Meyer introduces Bella Swan and Edward Cullen, a pair of star-crossed lovers whose forbidden relationship ripens against the backdrop of small-town suspicion and a mysterious coven of vampires. This is a love story with bite

My Review:

I was looking for an audiobook the other day and when this book kept coming up in the different searches I decided to revisit the world of Edward and Bella one last time.   And it will be the last time… I have such fond memories of this story and credit it too with much of my reading taste, paranormal books especially.  I thought it might be interesting to listen to the book instead of reading it myself.  I have to face facts though,  I’m simply over Twilight and revisiting this story again will simply ruin the memories of past enjoyment.

I still enjoyed the story, not so much the actress they had narrating, however.  It isn’t a complex story and I can see more of the faults that others pointed out in their critical reviews, points that were easier for a younger Amy to overlook.  I also found myself becoming confused over the plot differenced in the movie and the book.  I kept finding myself thinking oh wait that part was in the movie, not the book.  I did hear parts this time that I don’t remember reading, parts I must have glazed over while reading.

Twilight is still an enjoyable story about all the warm fuzzy feelings of falling in love for the first time with a beautiful boy.  I get the criticism and tend to agree how it isn’t a healthy example of a first relationship, but then again it is a story about vampires. Simply it is what it is and much credit should be given to a work of fiction that captured the imagination of millions of young and not-so-young women and had them clamoring for more.  Any book that gets people to read and talking deserves some respect.

So this is where I leave this world I used to play in.  I will remember you fondly Twilight.

My Rating: 3 Stars (for audiobook)

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

Book Review

 


Norse MythologyBook Genre: Fantasy, Mythology, Audiobook

Book Series: N/A

Released: 2/7/17 by W.W. Norton & Company

Pages: 304 Price: $25.95 Hardcover

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Neil Gaiman has long been inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction. Now he turns his attention back to the source, presenting a bravura rendition of the great northern tales. In Norse Mythology, Gaiman fashions primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds; delves into the exploits of the deities, dwarves, and giants; and culminates in Ragnarok, the twilight of the gods and the rebirth of a new time and people. Gaiman stays true to the myths while vividly reincarnating Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki, the son of giants, a trickster and unsurpassable manipulator. From Gaiman’s deft and witty prose emerges the gods with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to dupe others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.

My Review:

Decided to put this title on reserve when I was looking for books to listen to while I worked.  I thought this might be an interesting listen because of my enjoyment of the Thor movies by Marvel.  I also enjoyed Greek mythology as a teenager so what the hell, why not.  One last factor adding to my interest in these legends is that I come from Scandinavian descent.

Overall I enjoyed this book.  I might have missed some bits as I currently have the plague (flu) and am having trouble concentrating at times.  Being that this was a compilation of essentially short storied it didn’t matter much as I didn’t have to follow a long plot arch.  For those listening to the book, like me, it is narrated by the author which I thought was nice.

If you are a fan of the Thor franchise by Marvel please note that this will be different.  These are the legends that those stories are based upon.  It did amaze me how much of the comics, that the movies are based upon, are pulled from these stories.  There were plenty of characters and plot points that Marvel borrowed.

If you enjoy mythology, or Thor, or short stories, or Gods and Goddesses then this would be an interesting read that I recommend.  The audio version is short only 6 or 7 hours perfect for a day trip.

My Rating: 3 Stars

The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

Book Review

 


The Queen of the Tearling (The Queen of the Tearling, #1)Book Genre: Fantasy, Dystopian

Book Series: The Queen of the Tearling #1

Released: 7/8/14 by Harper

Pages: 448  Price: $26.99 Hardcover

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Her throne awaits . . . if she can live long enough to take it.

It was on her nineteenth birthday that the soldiers came for Kelsea Glynn. They’d come to escort her back to the place of her birth – and to ensure she survives long enough to be able to take possession of what is rightfully hers.

But like many nineteen-year-olds, Kelsea is unruly, has high principles and believes she knows better than her elders. Unlike many nineteen-year-olds, she is about to inherit a kingdom that is on its knees – corrupt, debauched and dangerous.

Kelsea will either become the most fearsome ruler the kingdom has ever known . . . or be dead within the week.

Combining thrilling adventure and action, dark magic, mystery and romance, The Queen of the Tearling is the debut of a born storyteller blessed with a startling imagination.

My Review:

I don’t remember why I put this book on my hold list at the library, the wait was so long I had forgotten.  After listening to the book, though, I’m really glad I did!  It was so good and kind of exactly what I was searching for recently reading-wise.  The book isn’t perfect but the plot did pull me in right away and kept me wanting to know more.  This title is tagged as YA on Goodreads and I’m not sure why as this is definitely an adult fiction book.  Dealing with subject matter that might be a bit sensitive for younger teens to read.

So let’s start with the negative and get that business out-of-the-way.  I found it truly annoying that the author felt the need to pound it into our heads every chance she got that the Kelsea was not a conventional beauty.  So what.  Mention her appearance one and be done with it.  She also had every man Kelsea came across in the beginning of the story be described as handsome and out of her league looks wise.  Enough of that shit.  The only saving grace in this gripe is that this plot point diminishes near the end of the book and the author has given up her obsession with the character’s appearances.

Okay, moving onto what I enjoyed about the book.  All the political and social and class commentary of society!!!  This is what made this book work for me.  It was a bit confusing in the beginning and it took me a bit to figure out that this is set in our world in the future in a newly discovered piece of land.  I think… The author could have done a better job of setting up the world in this regards. Then again maybe I would have understood it better had I been reading it rather than listening to it.   Anyway, there are bits of our world and culture that showed up at times and kept me wondering just where the Tearling was supposed to be located.  Might need to get my hands on a physical copy of the book to see if there are any maps inside.

This is also, at its heart, a story of good vs evil and I always love stories like this.  They give me hope that someday we can overcome the corruption in society.  Inspires me to fight for the greater good and with the current direction, our country is taking this is exactly what I need to read about to keep myself from becoming too depressed.

Bottom line this story isn’t perfect but it is good.  I liked the fire inside Kelsea with her strict moral code and sense of justice Kelsea is a strong female lead and a true hero.  I absolutely can not wait to hear the next two books in this trilogy!

My Rating: 4 Stars

The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer

Book Review

 


The ChemistBook Genre: Thriller, Suspense, Romance, Mystery, audiobook

Book Series: N/A

Released: 7/11/17 by Back Bay Books

Pages: 528 Price: $28.00 Hardcover

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that. An expert in her field, she was one of the darkest secrets of an agency so clandestine it doesn’t even have a name. And when they decided she was a liability, they came for her without warning. 

Now she rarely stays in the same place or uses the same name for long. They’ve killed the only other person she trusted, but something she knows still poses a threat. They want her dead, and soon. 

When her former handler offers her a way out, she realizes it’s her only chance to erase the giant target on her back. But it means taking one last job for her ex-employers. To her horror, the information she acquires only makes her situation more dangerous. 

Resolving to meet the threat head-on, she prepares for the toughest fight of her life but finds herself falling for a man who can only complicate her likelihood of survival. As she sees her choices being rapidly whittled down, she must apply her unique talents in ways she never dreamed of. 

In this tautly plotted novel, Meyer creates a fierce and fascinating new heroine with a very specialized skill set. And she shows once again why she’s one of the world’s bestselling authors. 

My Review:

After having to return this book to the library and wait for another shot at it I finally was able to finish listening to it this week.  I was a big fan of Meyer’s Twilight an The Host and waited for ages for her to publish another book.  By the time she got around to releasing this title I had moved on from the author and lost interest in her work.  I have changed as a reader and had planned on skipping this book.  Then I needed something to listen to so I decided to give the audiobook a chance.  I’m glad I did but once this story was done I think this might be the last time I pick up one of her works.

I didn’t hate the story but felt it started out stronger than it finished.  While quite a bit darker than Twilight it does share many of the same traits. The first thing that started to bother me about the story is the truly bad example of a relationship between the lead characters.  At the time I didn’t have a problem with Bella and Edward’s disturbing relationship tendencies that many people criticised it for, after all, vampires don’t exist, I was able to suspend reality and accept an unhealthy relationship.  This did not work for me in The Chemist.  When you remove the paranormal element I expect something different and a person falling for their torturer just isn’t acceptable to me.  Then there was the pacing, the beginning and end of the book were action packed but the middle had a whole lot of nothing with all the dry bits about the dogs and helping Daniel adjust to this new life.  It just fell flat and a little too much like YA romance that felt like it could have been taken out of Twilight.

What didn’t feel like her most well-known series felt too much like her second series (that ended with one book…) The Host.  I kept thinking while the characters traveled that it felt like scenes pulled right from that other book.  I wanted something new but, not trying to be harsh, that Ms. Meyers has a certain type of story she likes to tell and while the characters might change and the conflict might come from a different source these are essentially the same story rehashed to fit another genre.  First, it was a girl falling for a dangerous sparkly paranormal boy, followed by a tough boy falling for a less dangerous alien girl science fiction, and now a good boy falling for a deadly spy in a suspense thriller.  I enjoyed all of these books but want something new now and I just don’t think Ms. Meyer will deliver.

That’s okay.  This is what works for her, more power to her especially if people continue to want to read her stories.  I, however, am not one of them.  So this is where I will say thanks for everything and move on.  It was great while it lasted.  I would be curious to reread Twilight someday and see what I thought of the story now.  Or perhaps not…  Why ruin the fond memories I have of a book that opened up a whole world of reading to me.

My Rating: 3 Stars