Review of The Girl in the Spider’s Web by David Lagercrantz

The Girl in the Spider’s Web
A continuation of The Millennium Series
By David Lagercrantz

Star Rating: 
Genre: Crime, Mystery
Number of Pages: 416

Date Started: October 5th 2015
Date Finished: October 17th 2015

Synopsis:(From Amazon)
Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist returnDL flat_0

She is the girl with the dragon tattoo—a genius hacker and uncompromising misfit. He is a crusading journalist whose championing of the truth often brings him to the brink of prosecution.

Late one night, Blomkvist receives a phone call from a source claiming to have information vital to the United States. The source has been in contact with a young female superhacker—a hacker resembling someone Blomkvist knows all too well. The implications are staggering. Blomkvist, in desperate need of a scoop for Millennium, turns to Salander for help. She, as usual, has her own agenda. The secret they are both chasing is at the center of a tangled web of spies, cybercriminals, and governments around the world, and someone is prepared to kill to protect it…

The duo who captivated millions of readers in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest join forces again in this adrenaline-charged, uniquely of-the-moment thriller.

Review:
I wanted to love this book.  Truly, I did.  Unfortunately, it didn’t quite meet the mark left by Stieg Larsson.  This book was quite good as a stand alone book, but it seemed far more like fanfiction than an actual continuation of the same series.  While we see our favourite characters, their depth and relatability seem to have gone.

The mention of Pippi Longstocking is quite annoying. It’s been written about in a few books about Stieg Larsson that she was his base for Salander, but instead of mentioning something about why she dyes her natural red hair black, Lagercrantz brings it up by having Salander sarcastically give that name when working, mentioning that the two police officers who are supposed to watch Palmer are like two of the characters from the story, and someone else mentioning that they were reminded of Pippi. Why? What does that have to do with anything? Tie it in or leave it as subtext. You know, subtext: that thing that Stieg Larsson actually knew how to write.

The use of superheros was neat, but completely negated previous mentions by Larsson.  This could have been done as a ploy to get new readers, but as it wasn’t publicized and only those who read the book would know, it did more to take the reader out of the novel than it did to bring new people in.  The enemy use of superhero names made the entire subplot seem immature.  Likewise, the main villain’s “super power” did not fit into the well laid plans and world of Stieg Larsson at all, nor is the ability realistic in any way.

I did like the book, separate from the trilogy Larsson left when he passed away.  The continuation this series had such potential, but unfortunately I do not think Lagercrantz was the right author to attempt it.

Author Bio: (From Amazon)
DAVID LAGERCRANTZ is an acclaimed Swedish journalist and author. He has worked as a crime reporter for Expressen, and has written several novels, including the forthcoming Fall of Man in Wilmslow. He worked with international soccer star Zlatan Ibrahimović on his memoir, I Am Zlatan Ibrahimović, which was short-listed for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year award and was nominated for the August Prize in Sweden.


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Review of Risky Seeds, Risky Hearts by Cindy A. Christiansen

By Cindy A. Christiansen

Star Rating: 

Genre: Clean Romance
Number of Pages: 81

Date Started:December 3, 2015
Date Finished: December 4, 2015

Synopsis:(From Amazon)81YZUnjbf4L
Laid-back Sadie Jean Dixon had a calm summer planned working for the Utah Forest Service, but a deliberately set fire sends her racing on horseback up the mountainside with her Border Collie, Gypsy, in tow and flames on their tail.

Practical Colton Masterson has given up the ranch lifestyle for a college degree in accounting. When his little brother breaks his arm and can’t help run the ranch, Colton returns home to lend a hand. He takes on a part-time job at Samson Seed Company handling their taxes but soon learns the books aren’t in order.

As Colton and Sadie work together to find out the real outlaws, will they realize you have to lose a fly to catch a trout?

Review:
Short, sweet, and to the point.  The characters were excellent, the story made sense and played on general issues in a small town such as wanting to trust those you work with.  There weren’t many twists or turns, but it was a great, sweet, quick read that still had left you wondering at the end… wondering who that musician in the picture with Sadie was.  I absolutely loved the portrayal of Gyspy, the border collie.  I also adored Dusty, and the descriptions of how Sadie looks over both her horse and her dog throughout.  A great light, sweet clean romance that will entertain you for an hour!

Authchristiansenor Bio: (from Amazon)
Bestselling author, Cindy A Christiansen, has combined her love of dogs with her joy of writing to create an award winning combination. Her novels always include canine characters both in the pages and on the cover, an extension of the credit she gives to her extraordinary rescue dogs for their part in helping her overcome numerous challenges. In a reciprocal gesture for their love and devotion, a portion of the proceeds from her books are donated to assist abandoned and abused dogs.

She lives in Utah with her loving husband, two creative children with autism, and a pack of rambunctious dogs.

Fly into a good book!

Here’s what her books give you:
* A clean read with no bedroom scenes or offensive language.
* A tantalizing, fast-paced plot.
* A story without a lot of boring description.
* Down-to-earth heroes and heroines with everyday jobs.
* A rollercoaster ride of emotions you face right along with the characters.
* A special dog to steal your heart.
* A few added facts, a good message, and that important happily-ever-after ending.

Fly into a good book at: http://www.dragonflyromance.com

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Review of Fallen by Ann Hunter

Crowns of Twelve Book 3
By Ann Hunter

Star Rating: 

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy, Fantasy
Number of Pages: 253

Date Started: November 19th 2015
Date Finished: December 3, 2015

Synopsis:(From Amazon)
One prince. One mistake. One… chicken?
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A twisted retelling of the fairy tale, The Frog Prince, featuring your favorite villain from The Subtle Beauty & Moonlight, Sylas Mortas.

What would YOU do for love?

17-year-old Prince Sylas of Killeagh wants what every one else wants: control over his own life. When he tries to run away from home and escape an arranged marriage, the last thing he expects is to fall in love with a robber in the woods. Hiding behind a mask, the robber girl seems to lead a life of freedom Sylas has only dreamed of. Their adventure comes to an end when the Castle Killeagh guards hunt Sylas down and he’s forced to return home. He convinces his parents to allow him to find the girl again and consider her as a candidate for marriage, but he only has until the next full moon to find her, or all bets are off.

Death has a name, and it is Crwys. As a ban sidhe, her job is to visit the great houses of The Summer Isle and keen out the living to prepare them for death. King Sionnach has far outlived his days and it is time he cross to the Unliving World. When she arrives, a young prince named Sylas intervenes and offers to go in his grandfather’s stead. This break with tradition, and selfless sacrifice, move Crwys into loving Sylas, who looks so much like a shadow from her past. But when he crosses her to be with his true love, he invokes the wrath of a woman scorned.

Rós is just a little, aura-seeing, red hen whose master believes she is chosen by the gods. Her arrival at King Sionnach’s court is insignificant to Sylas at the time, but their destinies are interwoven. Can she help Sylas save himself from the curse Crwys has planned for him? Or will he become a fallen frog prince?

In this unexpected love story, Happily Ever After may not always begin with Once Upon a Time.

**THIS BOOK CONTAINS SOME MATURE SCENES NOT SUITABLE FOR ALL READERS.**

 
Review:
I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for writing an honest review.  In receiving the book as such, I had not actually seen the official cover of this book until I went to grab it for today and I must say I was quite surprised!

The characterization throughout this book is straight on, with an excellent coming of age experience for Sylas, who has to learn his responsibilities as the crown prince, and not just as someone who can do whatever they want.  When Sylas finally does take up responsibilities (ones that perhaps he shouldn’t have) he finds himself locked into a complicated battle with Crwys, who is locked herself in her past and refusing to move on.  While Sylas tries to do what he thinks is just to save his kingdom from heartache and despair, he realizes that everything comes with a price.

Through about 60% of the book there is no mention of anything relating to frogs.  The story has so aptly ensnared that by the time the mention of the twisted fairy tale comes into play, there are already solid feelings in place about all of the characters thus far.  The greenness adds another dimension to the story, and the way in which it is accomplished adds depth to the addled state of mind of an aged crone.  Crwys was by far my least favourite character, and I felt no remorse in what ultimately happened to her.

There was only one particular place that I found myself not fully reading and skipping ahead, and that was one area with repetition of the same saying again and again.  While I understand why it was done, I was quite happy when it ended.

The names were somewhat of a deterrent to my overall enjoyment of the book, not because they weren’t lovely, but because with some of them I spent more time trying to figure out how to say them than truly identifying the name with the person.  Though it was a bit annoying, the names were quite pretty, and completely appropriate given the Celtic mythology seamlessly entwined with both the original story Hunter presented as well as the take on a fairy tale.

While the stories in this series are fairy tale inspired, they are also completely unique in a way that I have never really seen before and could stand on their own without any mention of fairy tales at all.

Author Bio: (from Amazon)
Multi-award winning author, Ann Hunter, is the creator of the young adult fantasy series Crowns of the Twelve (including the novels The Subtle Beauty, Moonlight, Fallen, with A Piece of Sky, Ashes, and The Rose In The Briar to follow). She likes cherry so
da with chocolate ice cream, is a mom first and a writer second, has a secret identity, and thinks the Twilight movies are cheesier than cheez whiz (which is why they are her guilty pleasure!)

She lives in a cozy Utah home with her two awesome kids and epic husband.

BE SURE TO CHECK OUT HER HOMEPAGE:
https://www.facebook.com/authorannhunter

AND MAILING LIST:
http://eepurl.com/VZsFn

 

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