I am reviewing the urban fantasy Tidal (Watersong) by Amanda Hocking which is a very good book that I bought on kindle. The theme to this story is sirens which are similar to mermaids except they exude a beautiful song that hypnotizes sailors so they are lured into wrecking their ships on rocks. That is according to Greek mythology. They are also similar to mermaids in having fish tails although in this book that’s only when in contact with water. The sirens in this book thrive on fresh blood and are similar to vampires in that, although they try to keep it in check by swimming and snogging which distract them. It is an unusual book being about that rather than something like werewolves or vampires. The one siren was molested by someone at one stage and wreaked a terrible revenge when basically she turned into a kind of monster and ate him. Being a teen fiction novel there isn’t too much blood and guts. The sirens are just like troubled teens with boyfriend trouble and parents who are concerned they might be having sex. They have to always be near the sea and there are books on how to rid yourself of sirens and vampires in ancient texts that ultimately have to exist because they would all die if they didn’t as their existence is interwoven. Somebody asks why don’t they get rid of the books. In this book sirens are immortal and have a monster queen who ultimately must come to a sticky end. She has her eyes on their boyfriends. The next installment in this series is Elegy which I will try and review although I’m not sure if its been published yet. I quite enjoyed this book and do recommend it.

I am reviewing the teen fiction thriller Found by Harlan Coben which is an excellent novel that I bought from kindle. This is part of the Mickey Bolitar series about the nephew of Myron Bolitar a key character from another series by this author and it follows his adventures. His father has alledgedly died in a car crash and his mother was badly injured and driven mad with grief. Myron now looks after his nephew which has meant at least he can settle at one school. His mum and dad used to keep moving around. Unknown to him there is an old lady called the bag lady supposed to be mad but actually a heroine of World War 2 and rescued many from the concentration camps. Now she rescues women from sex slavery. They have become good friends and his dad used to help her. There are tunnels under her house where he suspects people are being kept prisoner. Also after his death his father was cremated by what appears to be something signed by his mother although Mickey knows his parents felt very strongly about burials and would never agree to a cremation. He thinks someone is hiding evidence his father might not be dead. The paramedic who attended the crash also tried to kill Mickey and his friends and it resulted in the bag lady’s home being burnt down. Mickey is helped by 3 friends and also someone from the school basketball team accused of steroids has come to them to investigate why he has been set up despite him being a thorn in their side in the previous 2 books. One of his friends implies she’d sooner help a serial killer than him. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and haven’t read the 2nd installment yet but was able to follow the story in this the 3rd book. All 3 books perhaps unusually cover a period of just a few weeks. I think I’d recommend this book Harlan has done a good job.

I am reviewing the urban fantasy novel Fall Of Night by Rachel Caine which is a very good book available on kindle unlimited. This is part of the Morganville Vampires series and is the 14th installment. Rachel has written over 30 books apparently. In this book Clare the key character goes to MIT University and leaves her 3 friends in her adopted town. This is a vampire drama although not too gruesome. At MIT she discovers a rogue doctor is constructing a vampire from a dead person using science. Oliver a rogue vampire is also causing problems. She had been hoping vampires were mostly confined to Morganville but was wrong. She does get help from her 3 friends who are concerned for her safety and one of them is her boyfriend. In the earlier books the draugh who prey on vampires are their enemies but I assume they have been defeated. Rachel is a good author and I hope to read to remaining books in the series soon. She does conquer the one baddie by breaking his nose which causes a vampire frenzy. The book itself is around 430 pages so is a decent length. I did enjoy this book very much and although I haven’t read them all in order it wasn’t too difficult to follow. I definitely recommend it.

 

I am reviewing the TV series The White Queen which is based on 3 of the novels in the series on The Wars Of The Roses by Phillipa Gregory. They centre on some of the strong female characters of the time. Some of the facts are a bit convoluted for dramatic purposes especially the timeline but it is an excellent series. It was run as 1 series in 10 parts and there is talk of a 2nd series. Many critics thought Amanda Hale gave the best performance as Henry Tudor’s mother although the main star is Rebecca Ferguson as the wife of King Edward. I think they both give great performances. The 1st episode got 6 million viewers and the rest of the series around 4.5 to 5 million viewers per episode in Britain. A more sexier version was made for the American market. I watched it on dvd. The Wars of the Roses wasn’t a continuos war but was a war between 2 families The House Of Lancaster & House Of York for the throne of Britain. It lasted more than a hundred years and ended with Henry Tudor marrying and uniting the 2 factions. The Earl of Warwick called the Kingmaker pulled the strings as to who was king. The black death or bubonic plague was also prevalent at this time. The budget was around $15 million for the series and many have compared it to Game Of Thrones. Like that series the novels were extremely popular.

I am reviewing the documentary film Catfish: The Movie which is an excellent movie. This is a documentary charting the relationship between Nev Schulman and someone called Abigail on social media site Facebook. Nothing is as it seems in this relationship and there isn’t really anyone called Abigail who is also meant to be a child prodigy artist. She does lots of paintings based on Nev’s photos and he is a photographer but it is actually a middle aged mother paints them. She also has 15 facebook profiles all fake which appear to be her friends and message and interact with her. It is quite a bizarre friend about someone investigating the truth behind a facebook profile. Ariel Schulman his brother and Henry Joost directed it. Many people have wondered if any of it staged because they appear to have started filming the relationship at just the right time when they can’t have known there was deception in advance. The mother uses a photo of a model as her profile photos and cleverly edits them to create new pictures. The title catfish comes from something the mother says about fishmongers used to put catfish in with caught fish because strangely it used to keep them fresh. Nev decides this relationship with the supposed prodigy daughter keeps him on his toes and stimulates his mind. Since the film the term catfish has come to mean someone who creates a fake profile promoting their self as more perfect than they really are. There has also been 3 series of Catfish: The TV Show on MTV which is similar to the film and has courted controversy as to how authentic the investigations into people with fake social media are. The film was the most talked about documentary at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival and it gross around $3,000,000 but is unlikely to make a profit as there are a couple of court cases pending about YouTube songs featured in the film weren’t attributed to their creators. Abigail sends him some songs supposedly written by her but they are featured on YouTube by someone else. I think most people know that probably half the accounts on the social media sites aren’t entirely genuine. I really enjoyed this film even if might be staged to some extent and one thing you notice with the film and the tv show is the person being investigated does have genuine feelings for the person they have been conversing with. I think the worst case scenario would be if they didn’t care.

 

 

I am reviewing the teen fiction novel Fallen by Brenda Lee Harper which is an excellent book that I bought from kindle. This is the 3rd installment in the Angels and Gargoyles series and apparently there is a 4th and concluding part due to be released in Mid-October. In this book we find out the humans developed a virus to harm angels and Dylan who is a hybrid part angel and part human is immune and also she has free will like humans. Angels and gargoyles only do Gods will. There is a war over hybrids displacing humans. The redcoats are devils essentially angels who ignore God’s will. Dylan gets to choose the fate of the hybrids. Davida who was meant to be Dylan’s guardian only saw it as a job and found it easy to betray her. This is a good well thought out story that draws you into a fascinating world. It is set in the future where cities are replaced by bio-domes. Males and females are kept separate and Dylan was sent off into the desert to perish but luckily was saved by people she met. Dylan has special powers like she can read people’s minds. Some abilities will only make themselves known in time. I really enjoyed this book. The 2 leaders in the domed city are perishing and are angels. The book is around 220 pages so is a reasonable length. When the concluding part to the series is published I will definitely review it.

I am reviewing the urban fantasy Freed by Brenda Lee harper which is a very good book that I bought from kindle. This is part of the futuristic Angels & Gargoyles series and is around 220 pages I think so is a fair length. It is aimed at teenagers but I think a lot of adults would enjoy it. The book is the 2nd installment in the series and continues where Found left off. Dylan who has special gifts has left the domed city where boys and girls were separated and anyone with any special powers was taken away for testing. In this book we do find out they don’t kill them. In the past gargoyles were tasked with protecting cities and many turned on the humans creating much devastation and people abandoning the cities. Dylan finds out she is more important than any other human and heralds a new era when her offspring will repopulate the world and have special powers enabling them to survive. There is a war being fought between the Redcoats, Angels and Gargoyles. They all claim to be looking after the humans but it depends on which group of humans you belong to. I have really enjoyed both this book and Found. I do intend reading the whole series. Dylan finds out that Donna who had healing powers has sided with the gargoyles ¬†and this puts Dylan and her group in danger. Dylan and her group join a village for protection and the redcoats are hot on their heals. I do recommend this book which keeps your interest throughout and this is definitely one of the better urban fantasy series around.