Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’ve Changed My Mind About #TTT

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Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish (click the link to visit them) who pick a different topic each week.

This week the topic is…Ten Five Books I Feel Differently About After Time Has Passed

What an interesting topic this week! I don’t know how easy it’s going to be though. I guess as bloggers, it’s quite easy to rate a book ‘wrongly’ because we don’t often have time to let our feelings about them sit and fester.

Sometimes when I read old reviews I wonder why I gave such generous or harsh ratings. I think it also takes time to realise which books will have a lasting impression or impact on you. Some of the books I’ve wanted to throw out the window have become my favourites simply because I can’t stop thinking about them!

So with that in mind, I’ve gone over some reviews and re-rated those in the most need. 

1. Wakening the Crow by Stephen Gregory

netg2 With the looming shadow of Edgar Allan Poe falling over one family, Gregory takes the reader into a world of uncertainty and fear.

Oliver Gooch comes across a tooth, in a velvet box, with a handwritten note from 1888 to say it’s a tooth from the boy Edgar Allan Poe. He displays it in his new bookshop, and names the store Poe’s Tooth Books.

Oliver took the money from his small daughter Chloe’s accident insurance and bought a converted church to live in with his altered child and wife. Rosie hopes Chloe will came back to herself but Oliver is secretly relieved to have this new easy-to-manage child, and holds at bay the guilt that the accident was a result of his negligence. On a freezing night he and Chloe come across the crow, a raggedy skeletal wretch of a bird, and it refuses to leave. It infiltrates their lives, it alters Oliver’s relationship with Rosie, it changes Chloe. It’s a dangerous presence in the firelit, shadowy old vestry, in Poe’s Tooth Books.

Inexorably the family, the tooth, the crow, the church and their story will draw to a terrifying climax.

Original Rating: 3/5

New Rating: 4/5

Wakening the Crow was a strange, disturbing read and at the time I wasn’t sure how much I enjoyed it. But two years on and I still think about this book and I still want to own a bookshop in a creepy church despite all that happened in Oliver Gooch’s. I’d love to reread it so I think it definitely deserves another unicorn.

Read my original review here

2. Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

sept1She was the heir of ash and fire, and she would bow to no one.

Celaena Sardothien has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak—but at an unspeakable cost. Now she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth…a truth about her heritage that could change her life—and her future—forever.

Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. To defeat them, Celaena must find the strength to not only fight her inner demons but to battle the evil that is about to be unleashed.

The king’s assassin takes on an even greater destiny and burns brighter than ever before in this follow-up to the New York Timesbestselling Crown of Midnight.

Original Rating: 4/5

New Rating: 3/5

I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with this series. I finished this book on a high which is perhaps what possessed me to give it 4/5, but in hindsight I don’t think I really enjoyed it that much. I remember skipping whole passages because I was bored and it took me ages to read. I’ve also had no motivation to pick up Queen of Shadows and haven’t even bought a copy, which speaks volumes to me. 

It would be nice to complete the series, but right now I’m not sure if I will. Consider yourself demoted, Celaena. 

Review

3. Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan

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 Nastasya has spent the last century living as a spoiled, drugged-out party girl. She feels nothing and cares for no one. But when she witnesses her best friend, a Dark Immortal, torture a human, she realizes something’s got to change. She seeks refuge at a rehab for wayward immortals, where she meets the gorgeous, undeniably sexy Reyn, who seems inexplicably linked to her past.

Nastasya finally begins to deal with life, and even feels safe–until the night she learns that someone wants her dead.

Original Rating: 3/5

New Rating: 4/5

At the time I described the beginning of this book as dire but by the end I really liked it, and now all I can remember is how hot Reyn was. I was taking a load of books to the charity shop last month and put this one in the pile, but then I felt compelled to take it out again. I just couldn’t part with it! Probably because I still wanted Reyn in my life and decided there and then that I need to read the next book.

So that’s why I think it deserves another unicorn, bad beginning or not!

Review

4. The Maleficent Seven by Derek Landy

This time, the bad guys take the stage.

Tanith Low, now possessed by a remnant, recruits a gang of villains – many of whom will be familiar from previous Skulduggery adventures – in order to track down and steal the four God-Killer level weapons that could hurt Darquesse when she eventually emerges. Also on the trail of the weapons is a secret group of Sanctuary sorcerers, and doing his best to keep up and keep Tanith alive is one Mister Ghastly Bespoke.

When the villains around her are lying and scheming and plotting, Tanith needs to stay two steps ahead of her teammates and her enemies. After all, she’s got her own double-crosses to plan – and she’s a villain herself…

Original Rating: 4/5

New Rating: 2/5

Even in my original review I wasn’t sure why I rated this companion to the Skulduggery Pleasant series so high. I remember nothing about the book, only the feeling that I didn’t enjoy it. I’ve had book #10 of the original series sitting on my shelf for over two years and I haven’t wanted to pick it up. I’m pretty sure that’s because this book has subconsciously put me off which is a huge shame because I was loving the series before this. Sure, they were getting a little samey but I definitely wanted to finish the series. 

I’m really going to make the effort to forget about this little blip and finish the proper books in the series. 

Review

5. Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice

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In a darkened room a young man sits telling the macabre and eerie story of his life – the story of a vampire, gifted with eternal life, cursed with an exquisite craving for human blood.

Original Rating: 3/5

New Rating: 4.5

I’ve read this book at least 3 times so I have no idea why I’ve only given it 3/5 on Goodreads. I haven’t read it since having my blog so I don’t have a review to check. I guess I’ll just have to reread it to be sure… 😉

 

That’s all I’ve got this week. Do you have any books you’d like to re-rate?

 

Of River & Reyn: Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan

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Title: Immortal Beloved
Series: Immortal Beloved #1
Author: Cate Tiernan
Edition: Paperback, 400 Pages
Published: September 1st 2011 by Hodder & Stoughton
Genre(s): YA; Paranormal
Disclosure? Not really, I got it for free from YALC UK

Goodreads
Purchase

Nastasya has spent the last century living as a spoiled, drugged-out party girl. She feels nothing and cares for no one. But when she witnesses her best friend, a Dark Immortal, torture a human, she realizes something’s got to change. She seeks refuge at a rehab for wayward immortals, where she meets the gorgeous, undeniably sexy Reyn, who seems inexplicably linked to her past.

Nastasya finally begins to deal with life, and even feels safe–until the night she learns that someone wants her dead.

I’ve developed a love/hate relationship with this book. It started off pretty dire to be honest and I was just about to give up on it when I glanced at some of the reviews on Goodreads. Most of them said the same – a terrible start but that it gets much better. So I persevered.

I guess I am glad that I did, because it did get much better, but I’m still not entirely convinced.

Immortal Beloved starts with our protagonist Nastasya and her group of friends whose entire mission in life is to party all night and sleep all day. It’s all a bit cliched. We soon learn that they are immortal, and apparently the only way to spend their time is to get wasted and hook up with each other, or any willing mortals they can find.

I found the whole thing pretty boring and repetitive.

The point at which something worthwhile happens is when Nastasya’s best friend/sort-of boyfriend/immortal life partner, Incy uses ‘magick’ to break a cab driver’s back for no apparent reason. This, thankfully, doesn’t sit well with Nastasya. She develops a conscience overnight, realising what a terrible path she she is on with her terrible immortal friends, and she decides to leave.

She runs away to America to find River, an immortal she met a hundred-or-so- years earlier when she was involved in a car crash. River, a mysterious, hippy-type, had told Nastasya to seek her out at River’s Edge when she’s ready to be a better person.

I couldn’t help but think that this is where the book should had started – instead of the mess that was the first 70 pages – then as a reader we’d wonder what had driven her to this point, and the cab-driver incident could be revealed in a flashback. But it’s not my book, what do I know!?

River’s Edge turns out to be a working farm, which acts as a sort of rehab to immortals who want to be reminded to appreciate every day.

Because of the relative length of our lives, so many things lose importance or become lost themselves […] we forget how to value things, how to feel things. We forget how to love. […] What we start off doing here is to give you a crash course in relearning the significance of moments, of minutes.

I did kind of like that idea, but the constant descriptions of Natasya scrubbing vegetables and washing dishes in order to appreciate every moment was just way too dull. It was like she’d entered into the dullest cult on the planet.

However, there were a few saving graces in this book. Enter Reyn – the viking-esque, grumpy hottie whom Nastaya recognises but can’t place. Between Reyn and good magick classes, Nastasya starts having flashbacks to when she was growing up in Iceland (another saving grace) before she knew she was immortal.

Without giving away the whole plot, let’s just say that Reyn becomes Nastasya’s public enemy #1, but he’s just so damn hot! Can she resist him?

Thwooooarrrrr!

And that, my friends is the ONLY reason I have to continue with the series. Hot, Viking Reyn – a combination of Eric Northman and Hemsworth’s Thor in my mind. More please.

unicorn rating 2

Immortal Beloved is available in paperback from Waterstones. Click here to see how you can get 10% off.

WWW Wednesday 22.07.2014

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To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading? • What did you recently finish reading? • What do you think you’ll read next?

Hope you’re all having a good Wednesday – the weekend will be here before we know it. Hurrah!

Here are my answers to those burning Ws this week…

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Currently Reading: The Princess Bride by William Goldman
I’m almost finished with this one, and I’ve loved every minute of it, as I knew I would. Any fans of the film will love it too.

Recently Finished: Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan
I had a lot of issues with this book, but I’m kind of addicted to its badness. I’ve scheduled my review/rant to go out tomorrow so check back then 🙂

Up Next: ???
Probably Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy #3) or The Assassin’s Blade (Throne of Glass Novellas) by Sarah J. Maas, but it should be A Midsummer Night’s Dream as I was supposed to read it in June for the Once Upon A Time challenge…but I failed.