Thursday, January 30, 2014

Mini-Reviews: The Twilight of Avalon, Requiem, and The Things We Cherished (DISAPPOINTMENTS)

Here are a few reads I've been reluctant to share.  Each have disappointed me one way or the other so I decided to just group them.

Source: e-book shelf

The Twilight of Avalon by Anna Elliott
Series: Twilight of Avalon #1
Genre: Fantasy, Medieval, Historical Fiction
Pages:  448 (ebook)
Author's Website | Blog | Twitter
Buy it: Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Book Depo

In Twilight of Avalon, Anna Elliott returns to the roots of the legend of Trystan and Isolde to shape a very different story -- one based in the earliest written versions of the Arthurian tales -- a captivating epic brimming with historic authenticity, sweeping romance, and the powerful magic of legend. Source

Review:  While grieving the death of her husband, King Constatine, Queen Isolde must also watch her back as she is sure Constatine was murdered.  A power struggle as erupted as many want both Constantine's thrown and Queen Isolde as a wife.  In the mean time, a different betrayal is brewing and the Queen must work to unveil the truth to save the lives of many.

This read was just okay for me.  It was longer than I wanted and I didn't get all the way into it.  I love historical fiction but I've always struggled with this time period.  The back-stabbing and mystery was interesting.  I expected this to be similar to Game of Thrones (which I've only seen and not read) so maybe that's why this one didn't meet expectations.  Here the drama was depressing and not exciting.  I wasn't rushing to get to the end and a few parts dragged.  This is one where the end doesn't matter as much as the path to get there.  If you like fantasy, you might like this one.

Source: eLibrary

Requiem by Lauren Oliver
Series: Delirium #3
Genre: Dystopian, YA
Page: 391 (ebook)
Author's Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Buy it: Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Book Depo

Requiem is told from both Lena’s and Hana’s points of view. The two girls live side by side in a world that divides them until, at last, their stories converge Source

Requiem alternates between Lena who is facing the return of Alex and Hana who has had the procedure and facing upcoming nuptials.  Those outside the wall can no longer live peacefully in their own existence.  They are being tracked down and killed to rid the world of the "Wilds" once and for all.  Alex and Lena's relationship is not what she expected.  Hana blames herself for Lena's life and struggles to move on toward her new life.  However, her future husband is not what he seems and wonders what she is getting into.

Honestly, I can't understand how we went from Delirium which was amazing to this.  Really.  How did we get here.  This story seemed thrown together and so far off from where we started.  It's not that this installment disappointed me so much as the series truly went off the rails.  Lena's love triangle was forced.  I can't understand how there could be choice between Alex and Julian when Julian was an option only because she believed Alex to be dead.  Even then Julian was a stretch.  Not so good.  The action never really came together.  There was tons of action at the end but then it ended with no real resolution.  Just lots of destruction and disgust on my part.  This one need to have four books.  Overall, this series just never got back on track after Lena ended up in the Wilds.  Huge disappointment.

Source: eLibrary

The Things We Cherished by Pam Jenoff
Genre: Historical Fiction, WWII
Pages: 288 (ebook)
Author's Website | Facebook
Buy it: Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Book Depo

An ambitious novel that spans decades and continents, The Things We Cherished tells the story of Charlotte Gold and Jack Harrington, two fiercely independent attor­neys who find themselves slowly falling for one another while working to defend the brother of a Holocaust hero against allegations of World War II–era war crimes.

Charlotte and Jack are forced to defend Roger Dykmans for war crimes years after the fact.  This is made difficult by the fact that Roger refuses to cooperate in his own defense.  Thus, Charlotte must find clues on their own to clear the elderly man.  Meanwhile, the story flips to the past to follow the history of a unique clock through time.  This clock will help resolve the age-old mystery.

Perhaps this book doesn't deserve to be on the "disappointment" list but a book can be good and still disappoint at the same time.  I expected a WWII fiction novel and this wasn't really it.  More than half of the book was set in the present day and I didn't get to see enough of the human element/struggle that I love so much about WWII novels.  Plus, this historical part of this novel spans well before WWII and simply ends during the start of WWII.  So for me, it's a great story, an okay love story, but not really a WWII fiction novel.  But that's just me.
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  1. Bleh, I already hated book 2, why even bother with requiem, sigh

  2. I have a hard time with fantasy, but I definitely could get into that last one. I love historical fiction, especially of the time leading up to WWII.

  3. Yes, a big fat yuck for Requiem. That series either needed 4 books... or 1 book if you catch what I mean. :P

  4. I tried and have not succeeded. I just can't deal with the fantasy reads.

  5. I'm sorry the books weren't more awesome!I didn't like Delirium so I didn't keep on reading the series, and I'm sorry it ended up disappointing you so much :(

    The last one sounds okay, though

    May your next read be awesome.


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