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Meager Musings on... Post-Apocalyptic Louisiana, 60s Attributed Tech-fasting, and Tasteful Sex

Very rarely do I truly dislike a book. I know you’re probably thinking back to my Duds of the Month So Far post that I threw together this past Thursday for the sake of my blood pressure, but even those books weren’t UTTER and COMPLETE failures, just disappointing. The following books I’m going to mention, however, are even LESS disappointing, and thank Bob on crutches for that. Aaaaand I cannot, in good conscience, leave them entirely review-less when pubs were nice enough to give me ‘em after I so politely and discreetly begged. Without a thought to pride, dignity, or any relevant thing I should’ve tried to maintain.

So, here I find myself in a talking mood. It'll be okay.

Most people like me might be resistant to a life without advanced technology, and wouldn’t willingly throw away all access to it. Imagine a world without cell phones, a world in which we would actually have to write things out, see people face to face to tell them things, wait to get home to have conversations, LEARN TO TELL TIME so clocks eventually become decipherable instead of complex devices designed so that one may realize the extent of their own stupidity. And okay, I did find Mallory’s tech-fasting to be a little dramatic, but all in all a fun sort of hypothetical in Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt. Plus, it helped she was such a down chick, all quirks, fun, humor, and… ingenuity. I enjoyed seeing her reach out, learn a little something about herself, about the past, about family, though I still wanted to sit down with Mallory and be like: okay, you can probably make a rich life without all the junk we bring down on ourselves via cyberspace and whatnot but people still have problems, complex issues that help make time seem an irrelevant factor in human psych development in retrospect. Also: doth need a different ending to be fully satisfying for me, in the sense of INSTANT GRATIFICATION in the romantic corner of things. I’m still growling about that.

Quickly, so that I may get it out of the way: If my eyes were anymore dazzled by this amazebeans front cover, I'd have sequins in them—can ya'll say ouch?

Anyway, I could see, objectively, that this is a deep and meaningful book. Orleans by Sherri L. Smith is written that way, but it didn’t pitch a tent in my heart. It didn’t climb in, bang around, and make me FEEL. On the other hand, I loved the writing, the way each word is strung together to fashion a remarkable picture out of such seemingly simplistic material. The narration is a meld of contrasts, a culmination of tribe-speak and the proper words for things, full of quiet and revelations, conflicting emotions. It’s just simply beautiful. And FEN. Girl, is a mother ducking BAMF to the nth degree. Full-on badassery in combat, strategy, maneuvering. There’s so much compassion to be felt for her even as the admiration kicks in. But because this is dually-narrated, the pacing picks up in Fen’s perspective then rests in Daniel’s perspective, which made it somewhat difficult to get through. Still, I appreciated the levels of the plot, the underlying meaning to everything. But a combination of Daniel’s thoughts and the resulting weird pacing mucked things up a bit.

Normally, I’m not tempted by adult novels while I’m—correction had been—perusing the fine cyber establishment of Netgalley. Some adult romances look downright appealing but I’ve always maintained an almost alarming store of self-control. Not this time. Something about the premise of Three Sisters by Susan Mallery really got to me as I was passing my eyes by. Technically, brothers would be my buzz word. And if they’re sexy that’s a bonus. But I’d like to make a little addendum to that and just come out with siblings. Any complex relationship involving siblings whether by blood or bond or, better, both is one of my biggest bookish turn-ons.

This story features three women who come together while simultaneously overcoming ENORMOUS emotional obstacles in their home lives. And the hint that there was to be sexy romances just topped it off. And I can seriously say I dug an adult romance novel, willingly, that was NOT written by Nora Roberts (her stories obsess me). Call down the marching bands and bring on the floats in commemoration. We have a charming setting, three on-the-surface different women forming a solid bond, and each have their own lovable romances. What more could I ask for? It certainly helps, too, that the story is well-written and, out of this batch of books, I FINALLY GOT MY HAPPY ENDING, GAMMIT. And lots and lots of tasteful sex. Oh, yes, that too.

At this moment, I’m DESPERATELY trying to coerce my easily tempted brain into believing that it’s best that I read through some of the other books I’ve had on standby instead of diving headfirst into Hero’s Guide to Storming the Castle by Christopher Healy. Like, all my willpower is being depleted even at this moment. And, no, I’m not bragging. Much.


John Jacobson said...

Great to hear that these books worked for you. I'm not so tempted by Orleans, but Going Vintage has gotten good press for being fun (and her book Sean Griswold's Head was adorable) and Susan Mallery's books are always fun for something that warms your heart a little bit. Glad you enjoyed, and I look forward to reading your review of Healy's new book. :D

Bookworm1858 said...

I liked Going Vintage but compared to Sean Griswold's Head, it was definitely lesser I think. My expectations might have been a mite high on that one.

VeganYANerds said...

I've really been waiting on Going Vintage but I have read reviews that describe it as being mediocre, which hasn't put me off, but I have lowered my expectations!

And all I have read about Orleans is how it's impossible to connect with, so you are not alone!