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Smashwords book reviews by Mama Kitty
- Hush Money (Talent Chronicles)
on Sep. 15, 2010
I’ve been in kind of a reading slump lately. No, really. I haven’t been able to get into a book and have had to force myself through them for a couple of months now. It’s not the books I’ve been reading, because they’ve all been good, but I just haven’t been yanked into a story and kept there.
Until Hush Money.
From the very first sentence, I was drawn in and I literally couldn’t put the book down. Even knowing that I had to get up at the crack of dawn the next day, I stayed up until 2am reading this book.
Susan Bischoff creates a world where people are afraid to stand out in any way for fear of being carted off to special government schools. There are certain people who were born with special Talents, and the government wants to use them for their own purposes.
Joss is one such kid. Ever since she witnessed her best friend being dragged away years before, she’s terrified someone will discover her ability and the same fate will fall on her. So, when the guy she’s been crushing on for ages (Dylan) finally decides to take an interest in her, she’s understandably suspicious.
I loved Joss’s internal dialogue. She’s funny and sarcastic, smart, and remarkably grown up for someone who’s still in high school. She takes care of her little sister and helps out her parents with their store, even while she bemoans the fact that she can’t act like a normal kid because her father is too scared that she’ll draw too much attention to herself if she makes friends.
So, when someone at school decides to befriend her, it throws her world for a loop. Add in that Dylan is suddenly showing an interest in her, and everything is turned upside down.
Because Dylan is suddenly talking to her, his best friend Marco (who happens to be the biggest douchebag I’ve ever seen in my lief) decides to start picking on her. I kept ranting at my Kindle (sorry, Paige!) because I wanted someone to do something about him.
I didn’t like how Dylan caved to Marco’s demands or how Joss decided to take care of it the way that she did… but in order for the book to move forward and for the end to happen the way it was supposed to (which I loved), it had to be done. I guess I just wanted the HEA already. What can I say? I’m impatient. :)
Hush Money is the first installment of Susan Bischoff’s series The Talent Chronicles. I’m eagerly anticipating the next book in the series, since I’m dying to know what happens with Joss and Dylan, as well as all the other Talents introduced in the book.
- Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble
on Sep. 28, 2010
In Fire Burn & Cauldron Bubble, Jolie is just now coming into/learning about her powers, so she was very unsure of herself throughout the book. While she does gain some semblance of confidence throughout the book, she’s constantly questioning her looks and her powers and that got to be kind of annoying. I did like the fact that she didn’t take any crap from anyone – she was blunt and told it like it is. I liked the fact that she had a big heart and tried to help others out, even if it ended up biting her in the butt in the end.
Rand was sexy and I wanted to take a bite out of him from the moment he stepped onto the scene. Even though I love Alpha males, I don’t like when the heroine is told she has to change every little thing about her life and is expected to go along with it without protest.
I absolutely loved the sexual tension between Jolie and Rand, but the fact that Rand was so standoffish irritated me. Sure, they have to maintain a working relationship, but why start something you’re not going to finish? That’s a tease, and I’m not a fan of being teased. I loved the fact that Jolie went ahead and moved on when Rand made it clear that there couldn’t be anything between them – I hate when one character is stuck pining after the other and is expected to just be stagnant until the other character pulls their head out of their butt and realizes that yes, they can be together.
I wasn’t really sure what Christa’s point in being there was other than to provide support to Jolie when she needed some girl time. Christa kind of annoyed me, but I was happy that Jolie had a friend there for her while her entire life was being forcibly changed.
Overall, I really enjoyed the book. I couldn’t put it down! But the ending was kind of a letdown in that it left too many plot threads hanging. I know that this is a set up for the next book, but really… there were a LOT of questions left unanswered. When I got to the last page, I looked over at PK and went “That’s IT?? Are you serious?!” (To which he promptly replied “Absolutely…. what are we talking about?” — gotta love my PK)
Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble combines Paranormal Romance with Urban Fantasy and gives us a light-hearted look into a world filled with magic, romance, and a little bit of suspense.