I’d like to start this report saying that this was my first readathon in life, so I didn’t really knew what I was doing, LOL. As I had 10 days, I thought it would be nice to pick a book for each day (spoiler alert: no, it wasn’t). As those 10 days preceded Christmas and my family’s trip, I thought I had the eternity to read the books that I wanted (spoiler alert pt. 2: no, I hadn’t). And as we had to read a total of 1.200 pages, I was insanely worried that I would never be able to read so much in practically two weeks (spoiler alert pt. 3: I was, haha!).
Keeping all of these impressions on mind, add the information that I graduated in Journalism to the mix. You may reach the conclusion that I have no time space notion, that I can’t do math to see that 1.200 pages totalize approximately 5 books of 300 pages each and that I just didn’t know what I was doing. You are totally right, haha!
But let’s go to the actual report:
Cemetery Tours series, from Jacqueline E. Smith [review here]
Once upon a time, there was a princess that had been granted with everything: beauty, kindness, money and education. Cursed from birth, the princess fell in a deep sleep after stinging her finger in a spinning wheel. A hundred years shall pass before a brave prince was able to awaken her from her fate.
This is the story that you know. What you don’t know is how Beauty was awaken.
Or how her real curse began in the moment she opened her eyes.
Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂
I bet you were expecting my scandal gif after such a story, right? Oh, well. The perspective of the story is a scandal. The real thing, not so much.
You see, I bought this book in June of this year and was pinning badly to read it. I love the whole fairy-tales gone bad wave and didn’t even knew that Anne Rice already attempted that more than twenty years ago. I don’t know what I expected, but it wasn’t what I got. I’ll be more specific in my disappointment during the review, but I don’t see the point of talking and talking about a book that I didn’t enjoy, so I’ll try to keep this short 🙂 I still love Anne Rice, but this was just… Wrong. Two stars that shall be justified in the following lines.
The narrative was third person, but only from Beauty’s point of view. There are two chapters were Prince Alexi narrates mostly of the events in first person, but it was for contextualization’s sake, not a rule. I like third person narratives, but it got boring not having a break from Beauty’s fears and sufferings. Scene and action describing is one of the strongest points of Rice as an author, for good and bad. There were several scenes where I’d rather have been left in the dark, but oh well.
The plot was simple and, in my humble opinion, awful. As I said before, nothing prepared me for this book and I had a completely misjudged idea about it. It’s partially my fault, as it was written in the back cover of my edition that this was a “polemic fairy tale”, with “a sensual world, made of forbidden dreams and dark desires, in which traditional notions of domain and submission and gender preference are tossed to the wind”*. Again, I should have seen it coming, as I read Interview with the Vampire and The Vampire Lestat. Nevertheless, I MANAGED TO BE SURPRISED, UGH.
It was totally the wrong book for me. I’m not a fan of BDSM on a regular basis, I don’t like books like 50 Shades of Gray, I can’t stand any book that says that is cool for an individual to humiliate themselves for the sake of pleasure. To see women to be beaten up, men being raped and liking it… This is not my thing. I’m too serious about both pleasure and pain to unite both. I have to see that I already didn’t like 50 Shades of Gray when I read it, but this book puts E. L. James and Mr. Grey in the nursery. I already mentioned here once or twice how I can’t stand vulgar sex scenes, the ones made solemnly for the sex itself, without any emotional attachment behind it, out of boredom (and I’m not even talking about love, you see, I’m talking about true desire). I hate them and this book, for me, was a giant almost non-stop sex scene with barely a story behind it. I’m sorry if you read this book and you liked it, or if you like this kind of genre.
I won’t lie, I had my moments with this book. The characters were an interesting part. I liked Prince Alexi, for instance. He is nuts, but who wouldn’t be after all of his “learning”. Beauty was a disappointment in her own way. What I really like is how Rice manages to extinguish gender preferences and prejudices about who will you love. This is an aspect that I already loved in Interview with the Vampire and it kept me captivated on this book as well, despite everything. This is how love should really be: just free. Why does it matter if it’s a boy or a girl? No one in Rice’s books bat an eyelash for two boys together or two girls together, because they are people before being males or females. Honestly, society should learn a thing or two with her.
On the other hand, Rice’s too free love gets on my nerves, as you can’t ship any couple together, because they change their minds about partners more times than they change clothes. They claim that they love them all, but Johnny Deep once said something on this line: “If you are with someone and falls in love with a second person, choose the second person. If it was true love with the first, you wouldn’t have fallen in love again.” I agree with him on this one. You have to admit, at least to yourself, what do you want.
I really wanted to tear this book apart, as it crushed so many of my personal beliefs, but I read it, had my good moments with it and intend to read the next book in the series. Why? For the same reason that the book got 2 instead of 1 star: it picked my curiosity. Things were so absurd when it ended that I felt the need for understanding. I need to read the next book to try to figure out Beauty’s mind. I should totally have gone to psychology school instead of Journalism, haha!
That’s it, thanks for reading 🙂 Once again, I apologize if something that I said may look offensive, that wasn’t my goal while stating my opinion, haha!
Hi, yet again! It’s with the purest heartache that I announce that this will be the last post in my Cemetery Tours marathon 😦 After Death is the third and last published book in the series by oh-so-talented Jacqueline E. Smith, so it closes the review frenzy of this week and I shall never recover of this awesome books. Thanks again, Jacqueline, for providing me with the whole series in exchange of an honest review for each book ❤
Michael and Kate are finally really dating after so many delays and are trapped with way simpler problems than before: are they ready for the next step? Is Kate over Trevor? Should Michael propose now or wait for a job to appear?
All those doubts are put on hold when Michael receives a weird invitation for the inauguration of Cirque Somniatis, in Hugo, Oklahoma. Kate jumps into the opportunity on the spot and convinces Michael that he should invite Luke Rainer as second escort for the event. Michael doesn’t really like the idea, as Luke seems to always causes him weeks of trouble and headache each time the three of them hooked up, put agrees nevertheless.
As always goes with people that handles with spirits, soon enough they realize that Cirque Somniatis is way darker than it should.
Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂
I’m sorry if I sound repetitive when I talk about any book of this series, but THEY ARE FREAKING AWESOME! After Death was even better than Between Worlds and made me crave for more like a possessed girl when I finished it and there wasn’t more. Five stars because Goodreads doesn’t allow me to give more.
The good news is that Jacqueline assured me that Cemetery Tours is not ending any time soon! YAY, THANK YOU MY LORD!
Ok, I’m under control now. Maybe. But let’s (try to) get professional.
The narrative style is once again kept and it worked just fine for me for the whole series: third person with alternating point of views. The news is that we get to hear more of the story through Luke’s eyes, and it was awesome 😀 Now I officially love Luke, even with his very weird romantic notions.
The plot was breathtaking. Really, Smith evolved a lot through her books and I had no idea who were the real villains until the very end. Everybody – even Luke himself in some parts – seems to be hiding something awful. How many ghosts are there in the circus? Is the Ringmaster really a human being? Can Chance be more obnoxious? ARE THEY GOING TO FREAKING SURVIVE?!
Seriously, Jacqueline broke me with this book. I read it in one day, crazily and non-stop as much as I could.
Once again, the aspect that more appraised me were the characters. Besides our bffs Michael, Kate, Luke and Brink, we are introduced to new people and spirits. They all grew up a lot, specially Michael (again), the Luke himself points out on his parts of the book. Their friendship gets stronger and it’s just beautiful. I like Claire too, a new ghost in town, but she is kind of scaring and crazy, in the worse way possible: the innocent looking way, haha! Blink also has a big part in this book and it was heartwarming to see what Michael did for him in the end. I cried hard, tears of joy ❤ But, putting all the magic aside for a moment, I have to share a theory with you guys or I may die.
There’s this guy that shows up as well, called Chance. He also owns a TV show based in ghost hunting and all, called Ghost Crusaders or some other non-sense like that. The thing is that Chance is a very jerk individual, but he is especially mean with Luke and we can clearly see that it goes beyond TV rating rivalry. In the end, his reasons are revealed, but I kinda didn’t believe him. I mean, NO ONE is so cruel for such a stupid reason without being a psychopath (which Chance wasn’t, he had too many passion in his hate for Luke). Which brings me to my theory: is Chance hiding some sort of insane and sick passion for Luke? It would make all the sense in the world for me and I was so sure that I was right that I even gasped when I read what it was all about. Seriously. Love and hate are apart thanks to a very thin and transparent line. I don’t know if Chance’s dedication to Luke’s fall is fed by only hate. I don’t think he has this notion, but I believe with all my heart THAT I AM STILL RIGHT AND THAT CHANCE IS JUST MAKING EXCUSES FOR HIMSELF.
Ahem, back to the book.
Bonus point: the circus aspect was a huge one. Smith manages to immerse her reader on that feeling of darkness, magic, joy, mystery and decadency all the same time. I’m fascinated about circus in horror/ghost/suspense books and for its history in general, so I felt butterflies in my stomach all the time while “I was” on the circus with Michael, Kate and Luke.
Overall, this was one of the best full series that I read this year. I’m just not going to say that it was the absolute best because I’ve read all Percy Jackson’s books earlier this year for the first time and I also liked them very much, haha! But seriously, it’s the best ghost series ever. CEMETERY TOURS BEATED THE MEDIATOR SERIES IN MY HEART =O
That’s it! Thanks for reading and for bearing with me and my Cemetery Tours marathon ❤ And, of course, thanks once again to Jacqueline, this awesome author that manage to find her own place in my heart 😀
Hello, again! I’m so proud to announce that, as you read this, there are already TWO BOOKS DOWN on my TBR pile for the #12daysofbooksmas2 readathon! 😀 Both are from wonderful Jacqueline E. Smith, that kindly sent me her books in this series in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much! But today I’m only talking about Cemetery Tours, the first book in the series 😀 Let’s go!
Michael Sinclair has seen ghost for the past 27 years. He grew up ignoring the held people in the afterlife and was really okay with his discreet job at the local library, with his shabby apartment and his roommate and best friend, ghost Blink. Then Kate and Gavin Avery happen in his quiet life.
Kate suffered a car accident and has no memory for the past two years and so. With the loss of memory, came a condition called Color Anomia, which makes Kate forget the name of all colors, despite still being able to recognize them. It’s a little annoying, but after everything she went through, Kate is just happy to be alive and moving in with her brother. Gavin, in the other hand, seems always sick, but not one doctor was able to figure out what was wrong with him.
Michael and Kate hit it off right away and develop feelings for each other, but the knowledge that a ghost haunts Kate and Gavin’s apartment and the arrival of an old frenemy collapses every aspect of Michael’s boring life. Now he has to decide whether he wants to continue to live a lie or fight for a chance of an almost regular life beside Kate. Assuming he’s going to survive his frenemy’s quest…
Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂
This book rocked my weekend! I was excited to read it for months (even talked a bit about it here), so it was only natural to choose it to be my first on this readathon 😀 I loved every single aspect on it, truly. Jacqueline did a hell of a job here and Michael has become another book boyfriend of mine! ❤ A 5 stars reading with a major cliff hanger that made me feel blessed that I already had the second book in my e-reader, haha!
However, enough chitchat. Let’s get serious.
The narrative was third person with alternating points of view between Michael and Kate and some special scenes with Gavin’s. I love this style, as I already said quite a few times over here, and it worked out well, for the reader to see that both Michael and Kate had their problems, but they still felt better together than apart. There were no loose ends, just that major cliff hanger for the next book – which I was more than fine with, haha!
The plot was amazing and very intelligent. Smith writes on a way that keeps her reader second guessing every single character that is not Michael or Kate all the time, it’s amazing! And even when you think you figured out who is behind everything or why all of that is happening, Smith doesn’t allow you to be sure until the deed is done. I LOVE THIS KIND OF BOOK! *–*
Lately, I’ve been lucky to befriend some awesome characters, as you may have realized during my last reviews, haha! With Smith’s book, it wasn’t any different. I loved Michael and found him to be a very believable character, as he is very insecure about his ability to see the dead. I already read some books in which the main characters could see/ talk to ghosts and this was the first time that I felt like I was reading about a real person that could have been my neighbor. Kate also was a super refreshing female protagonist, as she doesn’t depend on Michael or Gavin and actually saves Michael’s ass more than once. Kate also is a very real woman and I made her an example. Even when she screwed up a bit thanks to Luke (I’ll get to him in a bit), I wasn’t mad at her, because I felt she was only human, you know?
But let’s talk about the major narcissist of the world, Luke Raine. He’s Michael’s frenemy and Kate’s idol, so I hated him in the begging, but he is a good guy. You know, somewhere really deep inside where his ego never gone and all, haha! I have no feelings for Gavin, good or bad. I mean, he was a douche several times, but a harmless douche? I don’t know, I just have no hard feelings for him, haha! Oops!
Another aspect that really caught me off guard on Cemetery Tours was the healthy state of Michael and Kate’s relationship. They pin for each other’s company, but it’s not an Edward and Bella kind of pinning where the couple die if they don’t get to breath the same air, haha! They were always cool with themselves and highly appreciate some privacy moments, which is pretty rare in almost any romance book. I liked that! 😀 WAY TO GO, JACQUELINE! ❤
Bonus point: character’s growth. Michael, Kate, Gavin and even Luke grow a lot when they start to spend time together and this is palpable. Of course that Michael’s that changes the most, as he is super social awkward and shy, but all of them had their souls marked with the happenings in this book.
This is the perfect ghost themed book series, in my humble opinion, as it has adventure, ghosts (duh), mystery, comedy, suspense and the right amount of romance. If you like any of those elements, JUST. READ. THIS. BOOK. SERIES.
That’s it! Thanks for reading and thanks once again to Jacqueline, for sending me those awesome books! 😀 The review for Between Worlds will be here by tomorrow night, keep an eye open ;D
Hi, there! Good morning and Happy Friday! Friday is always happy, but okay, haha!
I’ve got exciting news! (cof not really if you follow me at Instagram cof) I’m going to be participating of the #12daysofbooksmas2 readathon! 😀 I was invited in by my lovely friend @thepagemistress and this will rock!
Here we have the rules:
Read a book with red or green on the cover
Read about book that’s on your end of the year tbr
Read a book that takes place during the holiday season
Read a sequel
Re-read a favorite book
Read a book with a movie adaptation (and watch the movie)
Read a total of 1,200 pages!
This is going on from December 11th-22nd
This readathon has also a photo challenge, but I’ll only do it at my Instagram account, so follow me there if you want to see what I’m about, haha!
Emma, from Jane Austen (currently-reading, my red book and book with a holiday season, haha!)
I know I am being too hopeful, but it’s my chance to knock my tbr pile of December for good, haha! Let’s see how I go! Oh, and I know there’s no signalized book with movie adaptation, I didn’t decide yet which one I’ll be reading, haha! Oops 🙂
That’s all about the readathon, for now! I’ll make another post about this when it’s over, talking about how it was my first readathon ever! ❤ Thanks again for inviting me, Lindsey, and thanks to you, that is reading the blog 😀