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Smashwords book reviews by Rachael

  • Crimson in the Very Wrong Fairy Tale on Aug. 14, 2012

    I got this book free as part of a Read to Review program in exchange for an honest review. Crimson in the Very Wrong Fairy Tale is about a normal Cali girl turning 16. Unbeknownst to her, she's actually the daughter of the Demon King and was kidnapped by the woman she knew as her mother and hidden in the Real World, away from the her people. However, she came into her "powers" at 16 and was thus found by the Demon King. Rating: 2 ~ 2.5 stars. I thought this book had really good concept, idea, and foundation. The execution, however, was very poor. I hesitate in saying poor because a lot of the problems I saw while reading were rather simple problems that, if Jasper had done a second read through or, even better, had alpha/beta readers, would be very easily pointed out. This read like it was the first draft and the author decided not to work on the story, just the grammar and such. So, as such, there's not much of a plot here. None of the main characters have any goals. Even the MC. The other problems, however, were just... Well, for example of the "plotting" errors... The first 10 ~ 13% of the book is pointless. It's just Crimson complaining. She wants a car. She complains about her mother's crystals. She complains about the school bus people crowding her (after saying she's completely unnoticeable...) She complains that her best friend didn't tell her the stones her mother gave her are making noise when she walks. She complains about her mothers aloofness. She complains and later argues with said best friend because he suddenly doesn't understand why she does whatever her mother tells her. Etc. Then you have Miranda, her mother. She steals the child (for some reason never given) and takes her to Earth. Crimson is from hell (the "Princess of Darkness" -- I wish I was making that up.) Miranda is from Heaven (more or less.) So, Miranda is "hiding" this girl. How does she do it? Why, staying in one spot for all of Crimson's childhood. Not only that, but Miranda is a celebrity fitness trainer and Crimson has even been caught on TV by the news. For gods sake! They keep their same names too, with the exception that Crimson Death is changed to Crimson Day. Miranda knows Crimson will come into power at 16 so what does she do to prepare her? Ah, she tells Crimson nothing of this and forces her to do Yoga and/or deep breathing. Besides the Yoga and breathing, the only other thing she does is give the girl crystals. What? No pepper spray at the least? No weird gift of a baseball bat? Some 15% in, after Crim turns 16, the Demon King comes back and Miranda does the whole "Crouching Tiger" cheesy flying kung-fu stuff. So, it's obvious that she knows how to fight... Knocked out by the King, Crim watches while Miranda is sucked into a big hole of light on the ground and disappears. Crim gets taken to the Demon World, which seems just to be caves and lots of gold. We're told the Demon King is some 22 heir in line for Satan's position but there's no real evilness going on. One person gets killed in flames but that's about all for most of the book. No sex. No temptation. Not even nudie pictures on the wall. Some Hell. Anyway, she's told she was kidnapped, that her real mother is dead, etc. Crimson believes everything and by day 1.5 stops even calling Miranda mom. She swallows it all without even a peep of protest. Tears, at a couple times, but she's so ready to believe everything these random strangers tell her. Never questions what she is told. Never tries to find out. Never tries to escape or even look around this new world. Her utter lack of any kind of response is baffling to me. Wait, I miswrite. She has, for some reason, one thing that brings a response and some action out of her and it's food. God help you if you try to get her to eat what she doesn't want. The only time she went head to head with her new relatives was when her cousin tried to eat a piece of her birthday cake. Here's a bit of that (remember, this is only like a day or two after her birthday): "I had dealt with the fact that I was a princess in a realm of demons, and that my loving mother was just a kidnapper. I'd dealt with having firepower, losing my best friends, and nearly getting killed in fireball training. But I'd be damned if I was going to let Warrior Boy eat my frosting roses!" Priorities... this princess has them... I suppose that doesn't matter because, for some reason, after searching for his daughter for 15 years, he sends her straight ... back to her house in the real world... For her safety, though absolutely nothing has been done to even attempt to harm her. I was waiting for the author to bring up the fact that her uncle and aunt would want her dead. That *finally* came up around 41% but, again, it was just thought and, naturally, she believed it whole stock and thus became paranoid. I'm not certain why but... A couple other things that bugged me was how readily she was calling these strangers her family. By day 2, she'd stopped called Miranda mom. She was calling the Demon King Father/Dad, the same with her aunt and uncle. I'm a military brat and have lived everywhere around the USA. I didn't grow up with my extended family. I know their names and have visited them once or twice but even I don't think or call them 'my aunts' and 'uncles'. That's a relationship and I didn't have one with them. Also, I'm not certain why, but she uses pretty much very adjective to describe walking and it became rather annoying. Her friends "scuttled". Her nurse "hobbled". Etc. Maybe it was just piling up.
  • Antichrist 16: The Becoming on Sep. 07, 2012

    I received this book free as part of a read to review programs. I'd give this 3.5 stars. It's a rather fast reading. I liked the characters and it flowed really well. I really liked that this wasn't a blatant "normal" YA romance threads that seem to pollute other books (the triangles or the "I'll die!" or that ilk.) I have to also say that I really don't like urban fantasy or fantasy with a male MC and this MC really didn't bother me. Somethings were, I felt, a little rushed. He's rather calm and collected about being the antichrist (I mean, by 20% in, he's already committed to the cause.) It felt really weird. You'd think it could've been sunken into the story more. I mean, give us some foreshadowing. I don't really like the names of the "evil" group. I mean, "the Takers"? I wish Graves had put more into the small details. That's just small, nitpicky stuff on my part. It a decent book.