Category Archives: 1 Treasure Box

H.R.H. by Danielle Steel

Book Review: 1 Treasure Box

This book was pretty slow moving and at the end I thought, is that all? It is a tale of Princess Christianna, royalty of a small European nation.  It is her journey of coming to terms with her heretage and responsibility and of course there is a love interest that is fraught with problems.  The was not much depth to the characters and the story was really contrived.

I thought the events leading up to the end of the book were all rather convenient, if also a bit sad.  All in all, I would say the book was pretty mediocre.

Toxic Bachelors by Danielle Steel

Book Review: 1 Treasure Box
Publisher: Random House Audio,Listening Length: 10 hours and 26 minutes (336 pages), ASIN: B000BVGTU8


The book was mildly entertaining and the characters were ok, but not as well rounded or defined as I would have liked.  The story centers on 3 male friends who are all very different from each other but they have a bond and they spend each summer together cruising on a luxury yacht meeting girls and partying.

It was fun to read about life on the yacht.  The story shows the progression of relationships with each of the guys as they meet various different girls in their travels both on and off the yacht.  I could not really understand the name of the book and how it relates to the story as I did not feel all the characters were “Toxic”.

The book was pretty mediocre and transparent but the ending was satisfying

To Purchase: “Toxic Bachelors” from Amazon, click here or on picture above

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The Good, The Bad, and The Undead by Kim Harrison

Book Review: 1 Treasure Boxes
The Hollows Series, Book 2
Publisher: HarperCollins (Mobi-pocket January 2005,) 425 KB (453 pages,) ISBN 0-06-082680-0

Rachel and crew are back in business fighting against evil. However, some would consider Ivy evil since she is an undead vampire and very dangerous in her own right, expecially since she is trying to abstain from consuming blood and is thus driven by the desire for it. One must wonder why Rachel wants to live with Ivy to begin with, could it be she enjoys the thrill of danger or is it just because she feels it is safer dealing with Ivy’s unpredictability and imminent attack than she would be living on her own with the Demon made Vampire mark on her plus her troubles with the IS.

The Good, The Bad and the Undead is the second book in the Rachel Morgan/The Hollows series.  Currently there are nine books in the series, with another three or four expected to be relaesed in the future. This series is a modern day story that centers around inderlanders: witches, weres, vampires and others including the occasional demon, so it falls into the Contemporary Fantasy or Urban Fantasy genre.  It is told in the first person narrative from Rachel Morgan’s point of view, she is the main protagonist.

This book follows the same style and format on the previous book.  It takes place 3 months after Rachel’s escape from the IS. She has been working as an independent runner, just barely earning a living. She has been hired by the FIB, (the human police force,) to track down the missing witches. Kirsten plays a larger role and there is some hot and heavy sensual writing between Kirsten and Rachel. Kirsten is a friend of Ivy’s, an undead vampire and the Scion for a very powerful and dangerous vampire.

Rachel believes that Trent is involved, (he is the very mysterious, very gorgeous bad guy,) because it is his newest secretary (the last one was killed under abstruse circumstances) whose fiance (who is a witch) is missing.  As the book progresses some of the things that Rachel does are not very smart and she is very lucky she does not end up dead. At times I found Rachel to be a bit irritating. Although it is an interesting twist in how she solves this puzzle, but in some ways I thought the ending was too convenient and there were a few holes in the plot.

I enjoyed this book and I am curious to see what else Rachel is going to get up to, so I am going to read the next book in the series.  This is a stand alone book, but it is also part of a larger story, so the books need to be read in sequence.

 

 

**Spoilert alert **If you have not read the book do not read any further, but I had a few questions…

I thought it was interesting the way Rachel got the Demon “Al” to testify against Piscary, but they never did explain how Quin managed to be in time to save Rachel.  And since Rachel could draw on a ley line through Nick, why did she wait so long to do so? Anyways a few questions???

 

 

Pure Blood by Caitlin Kittredge

Book Review: 1 Treasure Box

Second Book in Nocturne City Series by Caitlin Kittredge.

I thought the book was interesting, and there were some interesting scenes, I particularly liked the part when Dimitri first comes back into Luna’s life. The events that lead up to this were certainly very exciting.  I read this book first and found that Pure Blood was much better than book one, particularly since the cousin Sunny is almost absent in this book.

It is about a female “made” (not born) werewolf police detective who operates without a pack (she is a lone wolf.)  The story takes place several months after book one and Luna is on another case, but this time she has a new partner and a new boss, a boss who hates her. At times Luna did not act as a police detective would act, in that she did some really stupid things, like taking the only good piece of evidence to confront the culprit, without any form of protecting that evidence or even telling anyone about it.  I also enjoyed Luna’s development as she discovers her new abilities.

I liked how the book is a complete story and comes to a full conclusion at the end. The story was a bit predictable and cliche, but it was still entertaining, I am still debating whether I should read the next book in the series or not….

The Great Book of Amber (Books 6-10) by Roger Zelazny

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series The Towering Fantasy Saga

Book Review: 1 Treasure  Box

The Complete Amber Chronicles, books 6 -10 (Last half of the Novels of the Towering Fantasy Saga)

These books are quite different than the first 5*, in that there is much more magic in these books and they deal more with the Courts of Chaos. The last 6 books take place a number years after the happy conclusion of the succession and the repair to the pattern. These books are told from Merlin, son of Corwin’s point of view and he is a sorcerer who is living on our shadow earth where he went to college received a degree and was working at a computer company as a programmer.

I liked the way book 6 starts, where Merlin has just quit his job as a programmer and wants to go on to the other things including work on his own special unique program that he has created in a different shadow world. However, first he must deal with the annual April 30 attempt on his life. The story starts right in with a number of mysteries.  I also liked the descriptions of Chaos, I thought they were very imaginative and descriptive.

However there were numerous problems with the story and I found Merlin’s character to be a bit bland. I also found the non-stop problems that kept coming up a to be a bit contrived.  Plus, Merlin seemed to spend a lot of time explaining his situation to anyone who would listen and half of these people were enemies so it did not make much sense as to why he kept doing so.

During the book Merlin kept mentioning how Corwin was missing and that he wanted to  find him, then it  was very simplified in how he found him and also very sketchy as to how Corwin was kept prisoner as he was. There were also several things that were mentioned but were never properly resolved, which I found very unsatisfactory.  Things like what happened to Carol, what happened to the Jewel and why was it put into Carol’s eye.  It seemed really dumb, if the jewel is so important, there would be a better place to keep it, and since it is in her eye, why not just kill her and get the jewel?  Also, they address the second pattern, but not what is going to happen with it.  The book sort of explained why Jurt did a complete turnaround, from trying to kill Merlin to helping him, but did not ever explain why Jurt hated Merlin so much.  Over all, I felt it was a very unsatisfying ending.

*See my blog on books 1-5 for more information about Amber.

Book six: Trumps of Doom, Book seven: Blood of Amber, Book eight: Sign of Chaos, Book nine: Knight of Shadows, Book ten: Prince of Chao

 

Daemons are Forever by Simon R Green

This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series Secret Histories

Book Review: 1 treasure box

Second book in the Secret History Series


The story itself is very interesting and I really enjoyed most of the book, except the ending, which I found a bit disappointing and forced. On the whole, the book has interesting characters and some interesting concepts.

This book continues in classic Simon R. Green style.* In this book, Eddie is now the head of the family and determined to prove himself. He decides the best way to do this is to bring down the other dimensional beings. Once he starts this process he finds out just how dangerous they are and he realizes that if he doesn’t destroy them, they will destroy the world. I liked the other dimensional concepts and descriptions. I found them to be original and well thought out. There are a reasonable amount of fighting scenes although some of them are pretty graphic.

There were a couple of big plot holes about ¾ of the way through the book (why not just use the mirror to go back 3 years in time) that I found to be annoying and if plugged would have really simplified the ending. Although the ending did wrap everything up in a nice neat bow.

*Please see my post of The Secret Histories Series by Simon R Green at: http://books-treasureortrash.com/?p=486 

Sister of the Dead by Barb & J.C. Hendee

This entry is part 3 of 4 in the series Saga of the Noble Dead

Book Review: 1 Treasure Boxes
Saga of the Noble Dead, Series 1, Book 3 (S1, B3)
Publisher: Roc; 1st ed edition (January 4, 2005), Paperback: 416 pages, Language: English, ISBN-10: 045146009X, ISBN-13: 978-0451460097


Margiere, a dhampir; Leesil, a half-elf; Wynn, a young scholar and Chap, a fay-creature in the form of an intelligent dog continue their adventures, this time tracking down Margiere’s past. And a very interesting past it is, the story reveals how Margiere came to be and hints at why she was created.

Barb and J. C. Hendee have written two series in the Saga of the Noble DeadSister of the Dead  is the third book in the first series.  There are six books in Series One. Series Two has Wynn, the scholar from series one; Chane, an undead vampire; and Chap’s offspring as the protagonist.  Currently there are 3 books in series two. There is also a third series expected at some point in the future. The series falls into the high-fantasy genre.  The story takes place in a simpler time where there are no modern conveniences and if you want to get somewhere you either walk, ride a horse or take a boat.  The story is told in the third person narrative primarily from Magiere’s perspective.  But at times it is also  from some of the other characters, including the vampires.

After reading just the first few pages, I thought the book was good.While I was reading the beginning, I enjoyed it, the only problem was finding the time to read, probably because I found it a bit slow in the middle.  The story did have a few conclusions, but it didn’t really resolve anything although it did reveal more about Margiere’s purpose and her relationship to Welstiel.  Their adventure will continue in the next book, which will take them to the source of the evil. Hopefully, it will be more like the second book.

I gave this book 1 treasure box. And I am not rushing out to read the next book, I am not sure if I ever will.

to purchase: “Sister of the Dead” from Amazon, click here or on picture above

Dhampir by Barb & J.C. Hendee

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series Saga of the Noble Dead

Book Review: 1 Treasure Boxes
Saga of the Noble Dead, Series 1, Book 1 (S1B1)
Publisher: Roc (January 7, 2003), Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages, Language: English, ISBN-10: 0451459067, ISBN-13: 978-0451459060

I like the premise of the series because it is different from your run of the mill vampire stories.   The Noble Dead series are fantasy books with vampires, vampire hunters and elves. It is original. The series revolves around Magiere, who had a human mother and a vampire father. This makes her special, she can go out in the day, yet she also has special powers which make her the perfect vampire hunter. Her traveling companion is Leesil a half elf who has his own secrets. To round out the group there is a very special, long-lived dog named Chap.  In the beginning of the book Magiere and team are scamming villagers into believing they are vampire slayers, by the end of the book, they become what they have been pretending to be.

Barb and J. C. Hendee have written two series in the Saga of the Noble DeadDhampir  is the first book in the first series.  There are six books in Series One. Series Two has Wynn, the scholar from series one; Chane, an undead vampire; and Chap’s offspring as the protagonist.  Currently there are 3 books in series two. There is also a third series expected at some point in the future. The series falls into the high-fantasy genre.  The story takes place in a simpler time where there are no modern conveniences and if you want to get somewhere you either walk, ride a horse or take a boat.  The story is told in the third person narrative primarily from Magiere’s perspective.  But at times it is also  from some of the other characters, including the vampires.

I liked Dhampir because although it was predictable, there were enough new surprises to keep it interesting.  I also really liked the characters. I did not find it to be very captivating, yet it was interesting enough to hold my attention. There are a couple of rousing battle scenes between Magiere, Leesil and chap against a trio of vampires.  I liked how the vampires are painted as individuals with good and bad qualities (while most of them,) at times you feel sorry for them.

I enjoyed the book enough to be intrigued to see where the series was going so I read the next book in the series: Thief of Lives. If you want to read about a new high-fantasy concept with Dhampirs and Elves then you might want to give this series a try.

The Cursor’s Fury by Jim Butcher

This entry is part 3 of 7 in the series Codex Alera Series

Book Review: 1 treasure box
Book Three of Codex Alera
Publisher: Ace (November 27, 2007), Paperback: 704 pages, ISBN-10: 0441015476, ISBN-13: 978-0441015474

The Vord are nowhere to be found and most people do not believe in their existence or in their proposed threat. The story-line takes place about 2 years after The Academ’s Fury. Tavi is just finishing school, continuing to fight against prejudice, working as an assistant to the First Lord and developing a relationship with the head of the Canin, who is being held prisoner. Due to the political struggles a civil war is breaking out. Tavi is sent away to start his spying career as a junior officer, but he is really sent away to isolate him from harm.

This is a new and interesting concept in Fantasy. The series is about a country called Alera on the world of Carna, where there are elemental beings that can control metal, air, water, earth or fire, they are called Furies. Some of these beings are wild and can do harm, but when they are wild they do not seem to have a lot of intelligence. There are also several peoples who live there. They all have different physical looks and abilities.

The Cursor’s Fury is the third of six books in the Codex Alera Series. This is a high fantasy taking place in the Aleran Empire in a society similar to that of ancient Rome. This book is told in the third person narrative from the various different characters point of view, but primarily from that of the main protagonist Tavi. Jim Butcher has also written numerous contemporary fantasy books, primarily the Dresden Files.

I enjoyed this book, though not as much as the first two, as it was not as compelling.  I found it to have too many unbelievable battle scenes.  Tavi still does not have any fury-craft abilities, yet he continues to develop in other ways.  Although he was sent to a post that was to have little action, Tavi ends up being in charge of the only Aleran post between the Canin host and the rest of Alera. While facing several challenges he must lead his men to fight an almost impossible task.

The story did not have a proper conclusion; it left off in mid-story to be continued in the next book, Captain’s Fury.  I prefer a story that is a standalone, rather than half a story; however, it highly motivated me to pick up the next book in the series to find out what happened.

to buy Cursor’s Fury (Codex Alera, Book 3), click here or on picture above