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Review – The Duchess of the Shallows December 14, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4.5 stars, Fantasy.
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Title: The Duchess of the Shallows

Author: Neil McGarry & Daniel Ravipinto

Publisher: Peccable Productions

Publication Date: March 2, 2012

ASIN: B007HTUXWC

Available at: Kindle   Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

A game is played in the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas, and every citizen, from the nameless of the Shallows to the noblest of the Garden, is a player or a pawn. And no one is as he appears.

Not Minette, brothel-keeper and obsessive collector of secrets. Not Uncle Cornelius, fearsome chief of the gang of brutes and murderers known as the Red. Not the cults of Death, Wisdom, and Illumination, eternally scheming and plotting along the Godswalk.

And certainly not the orphaned bread girl known as Duchess.

Yet armed with nothing more than her wits, her good friend Lysander and a brass mark of dubious origin Duchess will dare to play that game for the most coveted of prizes: initiation into a secret society of thieves, spies and rumormongers who stand supreme in a city where corruption and lies are common coin.

The Grey.

Review: *I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The Grey is a network of thieves and spies as well as secret traders. Duchess believes her entrance into their society will give her the answers she seeks about her family. Entrance into The Grey is hard to come by and her task is dangerous to say the least. She needs to rob a nobleman’s house while he’s having a party.  Not easy.

Duchess is very ambitious and she’s driven by a need to know what exactly happened to her family when she was a small child. She’s also extremely resourceful and smart. I grew to admire her as the book went on.  Not only that, she was handy with a  knife. Duchess had a good network of people in the Shallows to rely on. There was Minette, the brothel-keeper and there was Lysander.

Lysander was disarming with his sweet charm. I really enjoyed reading about him. He is a ganymede or a male prostitute. He’s made his living on his looks and his wits for more years then Duchess can count. They’ve been friends since they were young children. Best of friends. Lysander taught Duchess much about the way of the Shallows.

This book was fast paced and I was easily absorbed by the well developed plot and characters. The world building was exceptional. There are layers of social classes and religious sects, including criminal elements. I was disappointed when the story ended purely because I wanted to keep on reading about Duchess and Lysander. I look forward to the next book in the series!

4.5 Stars_Star Rating System

It's Monday! What are you reading? (23) October 29, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
Tags: , , , , , ,
add a comment

This Monday meme is held by the The Book Journey. Feel free to join in and tell us what you’re reading!

Title: Blood Song

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Julia has been ripped from the escape she’d planned for herself. When she awakens to discover that her reality has shifted to include a supposed soul-meld with a man she hates, and who hates her… she rebels. Julia doesn’t want to be captive in a gilded cage.

Broken from the horrific events surrounding her friends, Cynthia migrates to the very city that Julia resides, determining to find her as the police follow the bread crumbs she’s left in her wake.

The Feral has come full circle and must begin a new life from the shadow of the old. His placement in the hierarchy of the pack is uncertain when he finds that he has an integral enemy and a pack member to protect.

Can the vestiges of Julia’s former life be restored so she might reunite with her one true love or has that door closed forever because of supernatural circumstances beyond their control?

For some reason I’m not enjoying this series as much as I have the Savage series or the Death series. There are a lot of reasons why and I’ll enumerate them in my review of the book but basically there’s no tie in to the first book so I’m not sure where the book left off. It’s been awhile since I read the first book, I needed a little refresher. All I’ve been able to do is piece together what I can remember from the clues in this current book. The plot is complicated and this hasn’t been easy so I’ve been pretty lost for a lot of the book. That’s one of the main reasons I’m not enjoying the book. You could chalk it up to the failings of myself as a reader, but I like to think that I’m not the only one that has had read many other books since the first came out and has had a memory lapse. I’ll keep plugging away in the hopes that things get better!

Title: The Portal

Author: Alan Zendell

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Harry Middleton is born in an America staggered by a century of decline, a time of medical and technological marvels beyond the reach of most people in a shattered economy. Pessimism and despair are more common than optimism and hope, and a desperate government bets the future on space.  The lunar and Martian colonies have not provided the hoped-for salvation, so despite an angry, disillusioned public, the first star mission will soon be launched.

Harry is a special child, smart, precocious, his only confidante an embittered grandfather.  When the old man dies, Harry is lost, until he meets Lorrie.  At thirteen, they bond, certain they’ll spend their lives together, but a year later, she disappears, and Harry is desolate.

With help from his friend Carlos, Harry begins a quest to find her, but he quickly learns how powerless he is.  Even the police lack the resources to help.  Harry and Carlos can only depend on themselves and each other.  An unlikely duo, Harry is an academic prodigy while Carlos is a stud athlete.  Realizing that school and baseball are their  tickets out of the morass they’re caught in, they inspire each other to greatness in both.

Trying to move on with his life, Harry has a college sweetheart, but as long as Lorrie haunts him, he knows the relationship is doomed.  He gains celebrity and wealth, but the thing Harry wants most, finding and saving Lorrie from whatever fate took her from him remains beyond his reach.  And always, in the background, are the deteriorating state of the country and the coming star missions.

And of course, there’s the Portal.

I plan on reading The Portal next. It’s was submitted to me for for review by the author. I read a sample of the book and I enjoyed it so I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the book.

Title: The Duchess of the Shallow

Author: Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

A game is played in the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas, and every citizen, from the nameless of the Shallows to the noblest of the Garden, is a player or a pawn. And no one is as he appears.

Not Minette, brothel-keeper and obsessive collector of secrets. Not Uncle Cornelius, fearsome chief of the gang of brutes and murderers known as the Red. Not the cults of Death, Wisdom, and Illumination, eternally scheming and plotting along the Godswalk.

And certainly not the orphaned bread girl known as Duchess.

Yet armed with nothing more than her wits, her good friend Lysander and a brass mark of dubious origin Duchess will dare to play that game for the most coveted of prizes: initiation into a secret society of thieves, spies and rumormongers who stand supreme in a city where corruption and lies are common coin.

The Grey.

This book is another book submission. It looks really good and I look forward to reading it. I love reading about thieves and assassin guilds.

That’s what I’ll be reading this week! What will you be reading?

It’s Monday! What are you reading? (23) October 29, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
Tags: , , , , , ,
add a comment

This Monday meme is held by the The Book Journey. Feel free to join in and tell us what you’re reading!

Title: Blood Song

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Julia has been ripped from the escape she’d planned for herself. When she awakens to discover that her reality has shifted to include a supposed soul-meld with a man she hates, and who hates her… she rebels. Julia doesn’t want to be captive in a gilded cage.

Broken from the horrific events surrounding her friends, Cynthia migrates to the very city that Julia resides, determining to find her as the police follow the bread crumbs she’s left in her wake.

The Feral has come full circle and must begin a new life from the shadow of the old. His placement in the hierarchy of the pack is uncertain when he finds that he has an integral enemy and a pack member to protect.

Can the vestiges of Julia’s former life be restored so she might reunite with her one true love or has that door closed forever because of supernatural circumstances beyond their control?

For some reason I’m not enjoying this series as much as I have the Savage series or the Death series. There are a lot of reasons why and I’ll enumerate them in my review of the book but basically there’s no tie in to the first book so I’m not sure where the book left off. It’s been awhile since I read the first book, I needed a little refresher. All I’ve been able to do is piece together what I can remember from the clues in this current book. The plot is complicated and this hasn’t been easy so I’ve been pretty lost for a lot of the book. That’s one of the main reasons I’m not enjoying the book. You could chalk it up to the failings of myself as a reader, but I like to think that I’m not the only one that has had read many other books since the first came out and has had a memory lapse. I’ll keep plugging away in the hopes that things get better!

Title: The Portal

Author: Alan Zendell

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Harry Middleton is born in an America staggered by a century of decline, a time of medical and technological marvels beyond the reach of most people in a shattered economy. Pessimism and despair are more common than optimism and hope, and a desperate government bets the future on space.  The lunar and Martian colonies have not provided the hoped-for salvation, so despite an angry, disillusioned public, the first star mission will soon be launched.

Harry is a special child, smart, precocious, his only confidante an embittered grandfather.  When the old man dies, Harry is lost, until he meets Lorrie.  At thirteen, they bond, certain they’ll spend their lives together, but a year later, she disappears, and Harry is desolate.

With help from his friend Carlos, Harry begins a quest to find her, but he quickly learns how powerless he is.  Even the police lack the resources to help.  Harry and Carlos can only depend on themselves and each other.  An unlikely duo, Harry is an academic prodigy while Carlos is a stud athlete.  Realizing that school and baseball are their  tickets out of the morass they’re caught in, they inspire each other to greatness in both.

Trying to move on with his life, Harry has a college sweetheart, but as long as Lorrie haunts him, he knows the relationship is doomed.  He gains celebrity and wealth, but the thing Harry wants most, finding and saving Lorrie from whatever fate took her from him remains beyond his reach.  And always, in the background, are the deteriorating state of the country and the coming star missions.

And of course, there’s the Portal.

I plan on reading The Portal next. It’s was submitted to me for for review by the author. I read a sample of the book and I enjoyed it so I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the book.

Title: The Duchess of the Shallow

Author: Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

A game is played in the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas, and every citizen, from the nameless of the Shallows to the noblest of the Garden, is a player or a pawn. And no one is as he appears.

Not Minette, brothel-keeper and obsessive collector of secrets. Not Uncle Cornelius, fearsome chief of the gang of brutes and murderers known as the Red. Not the cults of Death, Wisdom, and Illumination, eternally scheming and plotting along the Godswalk.

And certainly not the orphaned bread girl known as Duchess.

Yet armed with nothing more than her wits, her good friend Lysander and a brass mark of dubious origin Duchess will dare to play that game for the most coveted of prizes: initiation into a secret society of thieves, spies and rumormongers who stand supreme in a city where corruption and lies are common coin.

The Grey.

This book is another book submission. It looks really good and I look forward to reading it. I love reading about thieves and assassin guilds.

That’s what I’ll be reading this week! What will you be reading?