Sunday, September 2, 2012

Book Reviews for the Week

It seems ironic to me that so many books lately are imbued with elements of the Twilight series. I'm not sure if it's my luck lately, or perhaps I'm imagining things, but Twilight is figuring in the books I've happened upon lately. The first of these is Angel Eyes, by Shannon Dittemore. 

The book, free from my Booksneeze account (which does not require a positive review, I might add) was the first I've read on my new Kindle (hurray!), and it's premise is pretty cool, really--some of us have real guardian angels protecting us, and they fight real demons, and if we get to know our angels well, and have direct contact with their halo, we get some sort of power. Very, very cool. 

One reviewer of the book said she feel kind of uncomfortable, though, because the book felt too much like Twilight, and she thought those books were, well, sinful perhaps? I don't have the same qualms--if I had any in the past, I tossed them all when I fell in love with the Harry Potter novels. The obvious references to Stephenie Meyer's novels made me uncomfortable for a different reason: this book is BETTER. 

The description opening the book is downright lovely, and except for a few scenic problems when the author seems to forget it's pouring down rain in a scene, only to remember a page later, the dialogue and character interactions make a whole lot more sense. It's a good read, but I expect it's only one of a series to come. Is that a problem for me? Nope. I'll be checking out the next one, most definitely.

Everlasting (Everlasting, #1)
The Eternal Sea (Everlasting, #2)The other Twilight-ish books I've encountered are by Angie Frazier, books one and two in the "Everlasting" series. Yes, another series. That seems to be the MO of publishing today. 

These books are quite well written, even if at times the characters change their emotional mood and inner minds too quickly for my taste. I like the search the books are dealing with--the quest--even though this format is so overused it's starting to make me jaded against reading. 

But then Twilight rears its ugly head, and the part of Meyer's series I have always disliked comes back to haunt me. I've never been a fan of the whole Jacob vs. Edward controversy. Ack! Gag! As far as I'm concerned, if a girl isn't sure which guy she loves more, she doesn't really love either of them. I have little sympathy for a woman who is trying to figure out which guy she likes best. I'm lucky I had one guy to fall in love with, and I certainly don't find more guys to be more entertaining. 

Perhaps I am in the minority. Perhaps there are all sorts of girls out there gasping at the chance to have "two knights tilt" for them, or other such male macho crap. Then again, if a guy I liked made it clear he wasn't sure if he liked me or some other girl better, I'd be outta there, without a backward glance. I just don't get it. 

Unfortunately, even though the situations are really interesting, and all the ship sailing/ocean/storm/travel stuff is good, too, the love triangle thing is not nearly so fascinating. It's the reason I almost didn't read the last book in the Twilight series, for book three nearly turned me off the story completely (and still does). And these books could do without it, too. All they do is make the heroine Camille seem like a creep.

So, what have we learned from all of this? That Shakespeare likes originality, but is a prude when it comes to love relationships. That sometimes referring to a popular piece of literature is silly, especially when one's own work is better. What does all this make me want to do? Open my novels up and revise them, making sure to cut out all this quest stuff and any hint at a romantic rivalry. So I'll keep revising, and reading. How about you?

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