Book Review: Lucian Divine – Renée Carlino

synopsis single

“My guardian angel is a drunk.”

Evelyn Casey’s life is at a standstill. She’s in her mid-twenties, struggling with the dating scene in San Francisco. Nothing seems to be working out, and she’s starting to think that she’ll live out her days in her crummy apartment with her overbearing roommate, Brooklyn. It’s absurd, but sometimes Evey longs for a guardian angel to show up and save the day.

And then he does. Seriously. His name is Lucian and he’s a guardian angel, been on the job for two thousand years. His sudden presence in her life is both good—he’s brilliant, witty, and warm—and bad—he’s brilliant, witty, warm, and hot as —-. But as perfect as Lucian seems, he’s got problems of his own. He’s taken up drinking and he’s brazenly inserted himself into Evey’s life, going against the greatest cosmic law ever created.

For Evey, the rules are simple: You are not allowed to hook up with your guardian angel. But sometimes fulfilling your destiny requires a leap of faith, a confrontation with God. 

Yes, God as in God.

 


 

My Thoughts 2

 

`Lucian Divine` by author Renée Carlino is what I like to call an unsure read.

The beginning is cute and interesting. You get sucked in to the story pretty quick and can´t wait to read more until you reach the point where you´ve read more and start asking yourself questions. Lucian Divine

I´m not a stranger to Renée Carlino´s work so I was familiar with her writing. But this one? I´m not sure I can consider `Lucian Divine` a favorite.

The story concept is great: A young woman falls in love with her guardian angel. Only that angel has luggage. They fall in love and together they create and carry their special brand of luggage.

Not bad when seeing it from that point.

 

And all was well until the speed picked up. 

The main reason that kept me from giving this book all my shiny 5 stars was the pacing of the story. There were parts that felt rushed. Then there were parts that really sped up. I wasn´t confronted with this issue from the previous book I read from the author and it slightly bugged me.

 

With a story idea like that there could have been more. 

This is not to say I was completely unsatisfied with everything. As I´ve said, the concept is great. Even the characters were good, but good is never enough. A reader gets some character info but sadly not enough to actually know a character. Kind of like:

“Here´s a bit. There´s a bit. That should be enough. Now you can work out the rest.” 

If I´m not offered enough character detail then I can´t really form a bond with said figures.

 

Maybe not standalone material.

It would be rude of me to say the author could have turned this standalone in to a trilogy… Meeh, I´ll say it anyways: `Lucian Divine` could have easily been a great trilogy.  Because I felt I was missing big chunks of the story.  Big chunks that would have beautifully stretched the story. Instead I felt like I received a chopped off version of something grand. Granted, this isn´t necessarily a reason to give a book a lesser rating, yet I couldn´t shake the nagging feeling of needing more pages to appreciate this type of read.

 

One of those endings.

The ending wasn´t shocking or surprising. I´d say it was your typical “this is what happens to characters when they make secret deals with “God”. Mind you- A reader isn´t in the know about what goes down, and never will be. This makes the ending feel extra rushed. I´m not really a  fan of these semi happy endings but it worked for the story.


 

Would I recommend this book? Sure. `Lucian Divine` is a quick and light read that offers topics about faith, love and life. A nice romance for in between.

Would I reread this book? I wouldn´t, no.

 


 

The Cover – 3 Stars:    It´s okay.

The Story – 4 Stars:    Great story but too fast paced.

The Characters – 3 Stars:  I thought both were okay. They would have been better if a reader got more insight on them.

My emotional state after finishing this read – Not blown away.

 

3 stars



 

You can purchase `Lucian Divine` on Amazon.comLucian Divine


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Thank The Books It´s Friday

Friday! I´ve missed you something fierce! Before we carry on we need to give Chuck the Thank Fuck Friday Squirrel some love.

 

squirrel fuck

 

It´s been one of those eventful weeks, my bookish Padawans. To be honest- I haven´t had a schedule this packed in a long while. From Monday till this very day… I´ve been swamped with work, appointments, and other things that make me hate being an adult.

The only thing ( aside from reading ) that has brough me joy was watching Norsemen on Netflix.

 

norsemen

 

I have a ritual at night before I go to bed: Watch a history documentary or a documentary on Australians 72 most deadliest animals ( just to inform myself on what I´ll be missing out on while visiting countries that don´t have deadly animals ). I was in a history mood and couldn´t find anything interesting on Sky ( for those who don´t know what Sky is: It´s like Netflix just more organized ) So I found what I thought would be a documentary on Vikings. I received more than just a docu. . So hilarious. So weird. So my kind of humor. They say Norsemen is Norways finest export. I agree. The slaves are by far my favorite characters. If you haven´t already I really recommend watching this series. It´s so SO damn funny.

 

 

So what else have I done this week besides run around like a headless chicken? Aah, yes. I caught up on some reading. March is a birthday month for my social circle so I can´t get too invested in any heavy reading. Right now I decided to give an easy romance my attention. The lady from my preferred bookstore recommended this “light” 374 page chick – lit romance.

I owe you one

 

She said `I Owe You One` by Sophie Kinsella is a perfect quick read for in between reads. PERFECT! I´m currently on page 69 and can´t say I have any complaints yet. It´s sweet and has a great pace. I´m still suspicious, though. Can´t really trust books these days, can we? Fingers crossed this one won´t be another let down.

 

 

As for the blogging bit- I´ve been super productive!

 


Somewhere between going to the dentist, doing school projects, reading, working, etc… I´ve managed to get some blogging done, as well. And not just working on my own stuff but also going through my WordPress Reader! Yippie! I even discovered new blogs.

** sigh ** It truly feels good to be productive.

 

 

Since it´s been a busy week I decided to do nothing this weekend. No plans. No visiting anyone. Nothing. Just spend my days in ratty sweats with the tv remote control in my death grip.

 

 

Many might find this awful but for me, there´s nothing more interesting than having a stay in weekend. ❤ I live for these moments.

 

What about you? What are your plans for the weekend? What will you be reading? Are you going out? Let me know in the comments below!

 

That´s about it, folks. Time to get my sweats ready because I have a few hours left before the true laziness begins!

Wishing everyone a safe and wonderful time. See you all on Monday!

Much love,

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Mr. Male Protagonist, Why Do You Growl?

Romance readers will know about this. Erotica fans are familiar with it. Even Young Adult lovers have seen this occasionally in their beloved innocent books.

 

Growling male protagonists

 

A reaction from a male character in fiction novels triggered mostly by jealousy and / or approval.  But why?

Let´s do a quick run down on living beings that growl

 

  • animals

 

That´s it. Growling is a low, guttural vocalization produced by predatory animals as an aggressive warning but can also be found in other contexts such as playful behaviors or mating ( thanks Wiki * wink * )

So, why are we reading about CEOs, lumberjacks, bad boys and the hot quarterbacks in contemp. romance / young adult / erotica novels growling when it´s clearing an animalistic behaviorism?

 

 

(Warning: Interesting short fun fact ahead)

If you hadn´t known already, there are similarities between human body language and animal behavior. It´s actually interesting to know how human body language resembles the non verbal communication of animals. We can be cocky like cats, we signal aggression like dogs by baring our teeth and we gesture like apes. ( end of fun fact )

And this is okay. To describe a man´s movement by comparing him to a panther isn´t a problem. Sounding like a panther is.

Do we growl? Like actually growl? And what has authors thinking growling is an acceptable reaction? And why is it only male characters who growl?

I´m one of those readers who can get completely lost in a book. Once I´m invested then that´s it- I´m all in. I´m also the type that reads and fails to see someone else´s logic no matter how poetic it may be.

 

“He let out a growl…”

 

A line that has come up in almost all of my novels that have territorial Heroes. Aah, that word: Territorial. Another word that´s often associated with male protagonists. They are territorial. Sure. Why the hell not, right? It´s supposedly hot to read about a guy growling his way in to a woman´s knickers.

10 years, people…. I´ve spent 10 years of questioning this in romance novels and have only recently asked myself what I would do if a male would growl near me. Would this even happen in real life?

 

My first thought and facial expression would be, without a doubt, this, should a man ever growl in public:

 

The thought alone of the husbutt growling his approval when seeing me in a dress would definitely earn him this reaction from me:

 

And should he ever growl because he´s jealous then I might have to use physical education:

 

This is not to say that growling should be banned from all modern romance literature. Growling works beautifully for fictional characters in paranormal romances and fantasy novels or (!!!) for contemporary romances that involve male characters who´ve once been feral children that have had been forced by nature to adapt to wildlife and animals- Technically, they´re allowed to growl.

“I heard a low threatening growl from somewhere in the room. It was him.”

 

Me when I read that line in a contemp. romance novel

 

So, my question is:

Mr. Male Protagonist,

Why do you growl? Why not just smile with pride, use a great comeback line,.. or how about moaning? If you´re going to do something during your less animalistic sex then you shouldn´t growl.


QUESTION Of The Day:

Am I alone with my thoughts? Do men these days growl? Have you ever heard of a female character in novels growl? What are your thoughts? Does a growling male protagonist bother you? What do you think about growling in general?

Feel free to leave any thoughts in the comments below. ❤


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book Discussion: To “Like” Or To Leave A Comment?

Original source: Dominic Sceski   The Reason Why People “Like” But They Don´t Comment

Where I spotted this post:   author Mel Cusick – Jones blog


 

What do you do after you´ve read a blog post? Do you leave a “like” or do you leave a comment? Do you do both, or are you one of those silent ninjas who just read and move on?

I admit when I saw this post I dropped everything to have a closer read. Because why wouldn´t I want to know what other bloggers believe could be the evil issue behind this like & comment dynamic? It´s interesting… or, let´s just say I find it interesting.

I live for statistics and diagrams ( yes, I´m one of those people ).  I like to take thinks apart and see how things work. But getting down to the nitty gritty of WHY people are more inclined to hit a like button and not comment? That sounds like a year long mission. It might be impossible for someone to figure this complicated issue out. But there might also be an easy answer to all this.

 

Dominic´s post was a joy to read. Straight to the point and informative.  I agree with what he believes are the reasons for why people “like” and not comment. ( If you haven´t already, I recommend reading his post. It´s interesting ) I also believe there´s more to it than the reasons he mentioned.

Dominic has stated that it´s a matter of what makes people comment on a blog post And that would be:

 

A sense of blog personality

 

It´s true that if a blog doesn´t offer some sort of personality a blog post will probably  seem like a robot- cold, clinical, technical…. The people who follow said blog know about the posts but they won´t “know” the blogger if there isn´t something that includes a speck of humanity.

This also applies to blogs / bloggers offering too much personality. As soon as things turn into “me, myself & I”  then they can easily slip into the “they´re so full of themselves” category.

How will anyone be able to comment on someone´s work if they have little or too much personality?

So, it´s about finding a healthy middle way.

 

 

Hmm… But not everyone can do that. Okay- let´s move on.

It doesn´t end there. Having a decent online presence isn´t the only thing you need. A blogger would need to also publish posts people want to read about. There´s a problem with that, though- What is it exactly people want to read about?

 

So, we have two big points that need to be addressed, followed by questions that need answers:

 

  • Have a personality that´s appealing to the general audience
  • Have the content people want to read about  / need

 

Unfortunately, these points open a whole new can of questions.

 

  • How do I know if my personality is appealing or not? 
  • What if I have a great personality?
  • How can I run a personal blog if it doesn´t represent me, myself & I?
  • What if I am up to date with my topics?
  • Is my content less valuable because I´m not publishing what´s needed?
  • What content can I offer that gets people to comment?

 

Tricky, isn´t it? It sure as hell seems like it.

Now here comes the part where I agree with Dominic´s post to some extent:

Yes, having a personality is important. But who´s to say what type of personality works best? Because the world is filled with people, and people. There are young and older book bloggers. Parents and people without children who blog. Introverts and extroverts who type their fingers sore from blogging. All these types of people will most likely have different personalities and life priorities that will  influence their personalities in one way or another. And as it is with bloggers, there are different types of readers. People who seek out certain content that has `hopefully` been written by people who´s personalities speak to them. Because, yes- people feel comfy with others who fit their bill. 

 

In a sense, it´s a matter of liking a personality.

 

Let´s take my sorry self as a totally random example ( because I have no one else at the ass crack of dawn who´ll play guinea pig for me ):

I´m an extrovert. I´m outgoing and love to meet new people. I´m straightforward and I have a take it or leave it attitude. All this will reflect in my posts because that´s just the way I am. There will be people who won´t be able to relate with my posts. There will be people who won´t like my personality because it comes across as too crass. But there will be people who will approve. There will be some who don´t feel intimidated / offended / bored.

And this is where I can answer the first 3 questions from above:

 

  • Your personality, whatever type you have, is appealing. There will always be people who will appreciate the character of your posts. You can be an asshole or a wallflower – You will find your audience. 
  • Maybe it´s not your personality but a slight lack of confidence in specific areas? Say you have a great post, a wonderful personality but your post didn´t end with an invitation for a discussion? 
  • Your blog automatically has a personality when you include your opinion or thoughts. The moment you include “I think.. / I believe.. / In my opinion..” you´re already revealing pieces from yourself. This personal info can be tiny or lengthy but you´re still there. 

 

As for the content:

Unless you´re a gossip blog there will hardly be anything unique you can write about that hasn´t already been seen / read before. We live in a fast moving world where stuff is being published by the minute and all the hype over controversial topics, all discussion posts have already had their shining hour. This should always be remembered when becoming a public figure:

 

The demand is high, but the number of suppliers is higher.

 

Meaning – there is competition. Granted, book blogging is for most a hobby and therefore can´t be considered a rat race ( although some think it´s just that ) but there are more book bloggers out there than you can imagine. It will be impossible to stand out unless someone comes up with a shockingly brilliant marketing idea ( naked bookstagram features, just offering a suggestion. lol ).

For me, the comments and `likes `ratio isn´t a personality problem. It´s more about  “fitting the bill”.

If a blog has over 2000 followers and only a handful are active fans ( the people who leave comments and likes ) then the problem lies more likely with

 

  • the majority only followed in hopes for a follow – back
  • the majority doesn´t spend time reading a blog feed
  • people don´t care
  • the majority is too busy with themselves
  • the majority of followers are silent ninjas: read & move on

 

And all this isn´t terrible because this is how the world works.You can have the best personality ever and have the best blog posts ideas, well written content, etc. and STILL be subjected to a few comments despite your large following.

Also, by working harder ( or by giving your online personality a shift ) to gain more followers  there´s a huge chance you´d only be pushing numbers around.

 

2000 followers = 20 – 40 comments

4000 followers = 40 – 80 comments

 

Of course, I could be wrong. I could also be right. What do I know? I´m just a book blogger trying to figure this whole thing out at  3:25 a.m.

As an experienced book blogger, I can easily say that gaining comments and likes takes time. You have to invest time to find like-minded people who´ll recommend you/your work and invest more time waiting for others to find you. This is easier said than done but it´s possible.

Remember- your content is valuable. Your ideas and thoughts or even your reviews are contributing to the book blogging community. If you´re a book blogger and you´re wondering where the comments from all your 2000 followers are – There´s no need to worry ( unless you purposely shit on someone, then you need to worry ) Book blogging is not about comments or likes ( although it´s nice if they appear ). It´s supposed to bring a book blogger joy or some sort of satisfaction to express themselves and share their thoughts.

As for myself- I love to comment and like on other posts. In some odd way I see commenting as a form of recognition. “Hey, I actually read your post.” is what my comment ( aside from my actual comment ) is saying. A like is quickly given but doesn´t hold as much worth as a comment. But this is just me and my opinion.

Others might not feel comfortable commenting. Others might not feel the need to comment. Who knows. We can´t and never will be able to read people´s minds and win the comment war ( just as authors will never win their review war )

Should you be a blogger who  wants / needs the comments under your posts because you´re on some bookish mission then there are ways to reach that goal. Prepare yourselves to dive deep into the book blogger treasure chest because there´s a whole lot that can help generate comments.


 

How about you? What are your thoughts on why people rather like than comment? Have you experienced this problem? Let me know in the comments below. ❤


 

Thank you for taking your time to read this post. It´s much appreciated.

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The Reason Why I DNF´d `Throne Of Glass`- Sarah J. Maas

As a book blogger I feel it´s important to talk about what I´m passionate about- Books. And with my self-proclaimed responsibilities as a book blogger I actually want to discuss every aspect of book blogging. The good, the bad, and everything else in between.

It´s actually important for me to share my thoughts ( or else why blog, right?) Totally misses the point if I don´t at least give my readers insight on my opinions.

Opinions. Yes. Those pesky things that get people in to trouble sometimes. With all the social do´s and don´t´s it´s hard to keep up on what etiquette demands / allows these days.

 

 

I read somewhere that it´s frowned upon to upload a review for a book that´s been DNF´d. The reason for that was / is simple. Didn´t finish the book? Then you can´t fully judge it. Makes sense, right? Sure it does. But what if someone DNF´d a book and still wants to talk about it? To give a deeper explanation on the why´s? Is that frowned upon, as well?

Technically, if a post isn´t stamped as a book review then it´s safe to share ones thoughts. At least that´s how I see it.

Not too long ago I decided to give some hyped books a go. Books I´ve successfully avoided for a very long time. One of those extremely hyped books is `Throne Of Glass` Throne of GLassby Sarah J. Maas. And there were a few reasons aside from the hyped issue for me to not go near this read.

 

  • I dislike the cover image ( yes, I´m petty like that )
  • It´s  a Young Adult fantasy romance ( an interesting combo )
  • The author has a certain story telling style I wasn´t able to warm up to

 

But I kept reading the praises and listening to a few of my friends rave in the highest notes about this book. With that in mind and knowing full well that different books from an author can be better ( or worse ) I finally caved. I´m a sucker for romance, so… why the hell not?

I was prepared for everything. What I wasn´t prepared for was my fast growing disinterest.

 

 

I get bored really fast. This isn´t the best basis for reading, I admit. Yet, I do have a reading system that works well for me. If the first 100 pages don´t grab my attention enough then it´s time to move on.

With `Throne Of Glass` I did just that- moved on. As much as I wanted to give this book a fair shot I just couldn´t continue the story. I´m not saying the first 100 pages were total shit… All I´m saying is:

  • It´s a story that´s made its rounds before. For me, this means I´ve already read close versions of this story. Some of these versions were better, some worse. I dislike sitting here thinking “Oh, not this again.” while reading. I´m aware that no one can reinvent the wheel but I would have liked a little more spark in this one or anything that would have separated this read from others in a positive way.

 

  • Celaena, the assassin. Yes, I know. She´s a fantasy figure. Trust me when I say I really tried to see the beauty of her character. I don´t think I can consider myself open minded enough to accept the awesomeness of her annoying attitude. I´m all for being bad ass and going against the mainstream but Celaena? The ungrateful slave / assassin / slave? Nope. I don´t have the energy to appreciate her. I saw so many comments on how mind blowing her character is. Celaena is powerful, awesome, etc etc. Yupp, nope. I hope this isn´t the new YA fantasy Heroine standard.

 

  • Tongue clicking. I´ve mentioned this before in my review for Sarah J. Mass´s `A Court Of Thorns And Roses` and now I´m convinced the author´s whole imaginary universe has tongue clicking characters. I really should have counted the tongue clickings from page 1 – 100 because there were more than enough. “He clicked his tounge”

Being repetitive isn´t a good thing.

 

  • The boring bits. Okay, so here´s the thing- Sometimes parts we consider to be boring often add value to a story later on. By giving up early a reader´s probably missing out on something great. The key word is: Probably. There´s no guarantee my expectations will be met and I won´t stick around to find out it that happens. For me, the boring bits felt like one big boring word salad.

 

As I´ve said, I tried. I truly did. And I failed. Or, the story failed me. Either way, I don´t believe I´ll give another Sarah J. Maas book a try. Her books aren´t for me.

Throne of GLass

 

That wasn´t so bad now, was it? A pseudo review for a hyped book.

And because I chose not to continue `Throne Of Glass` I will also not rate it or publish this anywhere else as a book review.

 

 


 

Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoyed. ❤

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