Saturday, July 31, 2021

Campaigns & Companions The Complete Role-Playing Guide for Pets

 Campaigns & Companions

The Complete Role-Playing Guide for Pets

I saw this book on NetGalley and I thought to myself, I love D&D, and I like pets, and I always chuckle at those “imagine if your pets were playing D&D” threads on Twitter, so I thought I’d like this book.  I enjoyed the first few pages.  After that, well, hmmm. Have you ever eaten an entire carton of ice cream? It seems like a good idea at the start - ice cream! It’s delicious! But when you eat too much it starts to taste bad and you start to feel bad and then you’re like why did I do this to myself?  That’s what reading this book is like.  It’d be fine as a gift to someone you don’t know well.  It’s the type of book to leave in a bathroom for guests to read if you’re the type of person who buys books specifically for the bathroom.  

Thursday, July 8, 2021

The Last Watch by J S Dewes

I heard some good pre release buzz about this first novel, and I’ve been really looking forward to some meaty space opera since the Machineries of Empire series ended. So I was happy when the publisher and NetGalley gave me an eARC in exchange for an honest review. 

While this book was fine, it didn’t scratch that great space opera itch for me. It had a bunch of “first novel” issues with pacing and characterization. The book took too long to get going, then lagged and dragged a ton, then the finale felt rushed and a bit unearned. The two main characters, Adequin and Cavalon, seem half baked at best. Not quite likeable, not quite unlikeable, we keep being told of their flaws but then they keep heroically surpassing them every time in a way that made the flaws seem flat and the danger nonexistent. Sadly, the book might’ve been more fun as a novella - it felt very bloated. I might check out the sequel, but I don’t really care too much about what happens next.  

Saturday, July 3, 2021

Flash Fire by TJ Klune


What fun! This is the second book in this YA series set in a world of superheroes. The author has perfectly captured his protagonist’s voice, a gay teenage boy with ADHD, a love of fanfic, and a burgeoning sense of his own power and place in the world. The politics and corporate villiany seem a little two-dimensional, and the book’s view of policing did a complete 180 from the previous book, which was itself almost one-dimensional. I’d rather the author just acknowledge life is more complicated than either  “thin blue line” or “ACAB” because it detracts from this otherwise excellent and fun novel. Be warned! It ends on a Cliffhanger!