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  • Ben Staad
    replied
    Thanks for the update and offer. Hopefully someone here can take you up on that.

    Originally posted by DanFranklin View Post
    May not be relevant, but we have a paperback of a short story collection by Kraus coming out in a few months, and it might scratch the itch without taking as much of an investment! Also, some of y'all talked about posting reviews--I know no one ever has a TBR run empty, but if you enjoy digital copies and want free access to any of the upcoming CD trades, you can absolutely reach out to Lisa Lebel or me (if it's to me, I'll forward you her way!).
     

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  • DanFranklin
    replied
    May not be relevant, but we have a paperback of a short story collection by Kraus coming out in a few months, and it might scratch the itch without taking as much of an investment! Also, some of y'all talked about posting reviews--I know no one ever has a TBR run empty, but if you enjoy digital copies and want free access to any of the upcoming CD trades, you can absolutely reach out to Lisa Lebel or me (if it's to me, I'll forward you her way!).

    Leave a comment:


  • RonClinton
    replied
    Originally posted by Ben Staad View Post
    Whalefall was a big MEH. I finally slogged through the last 100 pages last night and, to be honest, skipped/skimmed big chunks of the back story segments. I finally hit that point where I thought the structure of the story slowed down the narrative to a point it became boring.

    It was well written however the story itself, and in particular, it's inability to create character(s) which I cared for very much hurt its ability for me to care about the interpersonal dialogue.



    ¬
    I had the same reaction. Many seem to love the book, based on the social media hype I’ve seen, but it just didn’t click with me.

    Leave a comment:


  • sholloman81
    replied
    Originally posted by Ben Staad View Post
    Whalefall was a big MEH. I finally slogged through the last 100 pages last night and, to be honest, skipped/skimmed big chunks of the back story segments. I finally hit that point where I thought the structure of the story slowed down the narrative to a point it became boring.

    It was well written however the story itself, and in particular, it's inability to create character(s) which I cared for very much hurt its ability for me to care about the interpersonal dialogue.



    ¬
    Thanks for posting! Maybe I'll read it at some point but I'm in no hurry at the moment as my TBR stack is huge!

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  • Ben Staad
    replied
    Now the exciting part. I can look through my TBR and start reading something else.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ben Staad
    replied
    Whalefall was a big MEH. I finally slogged through the last 100 pages last night and, to be honest, skipped/skimmed big chunks of the back story segments. I finally hit that point where I thought the structure of the story slowed down the narrative to a point it became boring.

    It was well written however the story itself, and in particular, it's inability to create character(s) which I cared for very much hurt its ability for me to care about the interpersonal dialogue.

    Originally posted by sholloman81 View Post

    Hope you post a review at the end. That book has been on my radar for a while as it has gotten tons of praise from authors and reviewers that I respect. That being said, it also seems like I keep finding reasons to pass on it for something else. Not sure why. The only other book that I've read by Kraus was the Romero collab "The Living Dead" which I did enjoy.
     

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  • sholloman81
    replied
    Just finished reading the Thunderstorm Black Voltage Private Reserve of Matt Serafini's "Rites of Extinction", a first time read & author for me. Had no idea what to expect going into this one and ended up being pretty surprised by the story. The beginning was a bit slow, and there were sections where I was completely confused as to what was happening, but eventually everything clicked into place and the story went from ok to very good. This is one of those stories that begs to be read more than once, if only to pick-up all the clues you miss the first time around. This story also had lots of genuinely creepy and gruesome scenes. Not sure if this story would have worked better as a novel or not, but I definitely would have loved to know a bit more about the mythology in the book, and also would have loved a bit more time with some of the side characters and town. Overall, I enjoyed this story and will be on the lookout for more of this author's works.

    Am now reading the Thunderstorm Black Voltage VS of Brian Keene's & JF Gonzalez's "Clickers Vs. Zombies", a first time read for me. Have only read one previous Clickers book, but I remember it being very fun.

    Leave a comment:


  • brlesh
    replied
    Finished up Tidepool by Nicole Wilson the other day.

    While Tidepool borrows heavily from Lovecraft’s Shadows Over Innsmouth, Wilson throws in a major new twist and makes the story her own.

    It did start to get repetitive in the second half and probably ran a little longer than it needed to, but overall I enjoyed Tidepool and would certainly read something else by Wilson.

    Next, I’m about 80 pages into If You See Her by Ania Ahlborn, a creepy haunted house / ghost story that I am thoroughly enjoying to this point.

    B

    Leave a comment:


  • brlesh
    replied
    Originally posted by sholloman81 View Post
    Just finished reading the Centipede LE of Mendal W. Johnson's "Let's Go Play at the Adams'", a first-time author and read for me. I was aware of this books' reputation going in and was generally aware of what to expect, nevertheless, this book completely destroyed me. There were multiple times where I had to set it aside because it was just too intense or horrible, and yet, I found myself eventually picking it right back-up, if only so I could get to the end of poor Barbara's plight. Man, what a twisted tale, and what a messed-up ending! I'm a huge Ketchum fan and remember reading Ketchum's "The Girl Next Door" and being pretty horrified, but for me, I think Johnson's "Let's Go Play at the Adams'" may have exceeded it. Overall, I'm glad to have finally gotten around to this infamous book and am happy to have added the Centipede version to my collection.

    Am now reading the Thunderstorm Black Voltage Private Reserve of Matt Serafini's "Rites of Extinction", a first time read & author for me. No idea what to expect and hope to find a gem here!
    While I’ve found both books to be very disturbing and impactful with what they were trying to deliver, IMO the Ketchum book is the better of two. ¬†Ketchum’s narrative allowed for the slow buildup of tension throughout the story, as things slowly get worse and worse for the two sisters. ¬†You can see where the ending is going in the Ketchum book from a mile away, and if anything that made it all the more impactful when you reach that ending. ¬†The death of the babysitter in LGPATA was impactful, but it wasn’t the gut punch that the ending of TGND provided.

    Plus, the fact that there was an adult orchestrating these boys gave Ketchum’s book an air of credibility that was lacking in LGPATA. ¬†(This was one of several credibility issues that popped up at the end of the Johnson book for me.) ¬†Also, the fact that the woman was orchestrating all these acts against her own relatives just made the whole story more vile in TGND.

    It’s been 20 years since I’ve read TGND, and to this day it remains the most disturbing book I’ve ever read.

    B.


     

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  • brlesh
    replied
    Originally posted by mhatchett View Post

    It is an absolute Classic and lifelong favorite of mine. But as I always say, not everything is for everybody. I have enjoyed the movies!
    Yeah, my expectations were probably too high going into the book, based on the book’s classic reputation and my viewing experience from Part 1 a few years ago.

    Maybe a book I’ll revisit a few years in the future, when I’ll have a better sense of what I’m getting into.

    B.


     

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  • mhatchett
    replied
    Originally posted by brlesh View Post
    Finally finished up Dune the other day, and have to say it was another sci-fi classic I found to be overall disappointing.

    I thought the first part (250 pages) was great. If you saw the recent movie, it pretty much followed the first part of the book. The story was well paced, there were multiple character POV’s, political intrigue, blackmail and betrayal.

    Part 2 (the next 200 pages) was were the story went off the rails for me. This was were Paul and Jessica escape from the attack into the desert and are taken in by the Fremen. The pacing slowed to a crawl as most of this part was told from Paul’s POV and adjusting to life in the desert and coming to realize you maybe the most powerful person in the universe. This part was definitely a novel from the 60’s - a lot of mysticism, mind altering substances & group consciousness. It felt like this part could have been written by Timothy Leary or Carlos Castenados.

    Part 3 (the last 150 pages) was better, as the pacing picked back up (though not to the level of Part 1) as some of the characters from Part 1 are revisited and some new characters are introduced. However, I just found the last 50 pages to be rushed and rather anticlimactic. Plus, the most interesting new character just seemed to disappear at the end.

    Overall, I found Paul’s story arc to be interesting (from a scared kid meeting the Reverend Mother in the beginning to essentially usurping the emperor at the end). But the slow pacing and very anticlimactic ending certainly dragged the story down for me.

    I am still looking forward to see what they do with the second movie, as I did like the first.

    B
    It is an absolute Classic and lifelong favorite of mine. But as I always say, not everything is for everybody. I have enjoyed the movies!

    Leave a comment:


  • sholloman81
    replied
    Originally posted by RonClinton View Post

    Based on my recollection of the two similar books, I'm inclined to agree...Ketchum's work felt slightly more literary, the sharpest edges polished and burnished a bit to keep it from cutting bone deep. Johnson's work had edges that were comparatively rougher and cut a bit harder, its vibe more documentarian than Ketchum's somewhat cinematic approach. I suspect that difference can simply be chalked up to the fact that Ketchum was the better, more accomplished writer..but there's something to be said about a new but capable author deliving into a subject of that type and delivering something that has a certain rawness and honesty to it that a more experienced writer might not quite achieve in his quest to deliver a finer product.
    I totally agree with this assessment. Plot-wise, I also found it interesting that Ketchum's book had an adult among the group of kids whereas Mendal's story did not. I know Ketchum was hewing closer to the true crime source material; however, I personally found Mendal's choice of having no adults among the kids more chilling since the children's thoughts, choices, and actions were wholly their own.

    Leave a comment:


  • RonClinton
    replied
    Originally posted by sholloman81 View Post
    Just finished reading the Centipede LE of Mendal W. Johnson's "Let's Go Play at the Adams'", a first-time author and read for me. I was aware of this books' reputation going in and was generally aware of what to expect, nevertheless, this book completely destroyed me. There were multiple times where I had to set it aside because it was just too intense or horrible, and yet, I found myself eventually picking it right back-up, if only so I could get to the end of poor Barbara's plight. Man, what a twisted tale, and what a messed-up ending! I'm a huge Ketchum fan and remember reading Ketchum's "The Girl Next Door" and being pretty horrified, but for me, I think Johnson's "Let's Go Play at the Adams'" may have exceeded it.
    Based on my recollection of the two similar books, I'm inclined to agree...Ketchum's work felt slightly more literary, the sharpest edges polished and burnished a bit to keep it from cutting bone deep. Johnson's work had edges that were comparatively rougher and cut a bit harder, its vibe more documentarian than Ketchum's somewhat cinematic approach. I suspect that difference can simply be chalked up to the fact that Ketchum was the better, more accomplished writer..but there's something to be said about a new but capable author deliving into a subject of that type and delivering something that has a certain rawness and honesty to it that a more experienced writer might not quite achieve in his quest to deliver a finer product.

    Leave a comment:


  • sholloman81
    replied
    Just finished reading the Centipede LE of Mendal W. Johnson's "Let's Go Play at the Adams'", a first-time author and read for me. I was aware of this books' reputation going in and was generally aware of what to expect, nevertheless, this book completely destroyed me. There were multiple times where I had to set it aside because it was just too intense or horrible, and yet, I found myself eventually picking it right back-up, if only so I could get to the end of poor Barbara's plight. Man, what a twisted tale, and what a messed-up ending! I'm a huge Ketchum fan and remember reading Ketchum's "The Girl Next Door" and being pretty horrified, but for me, I think Johnson's "Let's Go Play at the Adams'" may have exceeded it. Overall, I'm glad to have finally gotten around to this infamous book and am happy to have added the Centipede version to my collection.

    Am now reading the Thunderstorm Black Voltage Private Reserve of Matt Serafini's "Rites of Extinction", a first time read & author for me. No idea what to expect and hope to find a gem here!

    Leave a comment:


  • Sock Monkey
    replied
    Originally posted by sholloman81 View Post

    I don't think your rule about not reading books by the same author back-to-back is weird at all. I made that mistake a while back with a giant stack of Bentley Little books that I had accumulated, and it completely ruined him as an author for me. The books were fine, some of them were even exceptional, but reading them back-to-back made me notice how formulaic a lot of them were. I probably wouldn't have noticed or felt that way if I hadn't read them in that fashion.

    Glad you ended-up loving Annihilation! I'm a huge fan of the Area X books!
    Yeah, I think something similar happened to me with an author at one point, which caused me to put this rule in place.  I remember thinking that the book I was reading was good, I was just burnt out on the writer's style or something.  Ever since, I always alternate authors.  The problem, though, is that I wind up losing momentum with series of books and they drift from memory, causing me to start all over again.  I'm about to start Cronin's PASSAGE trilogy soon...for the third time.  One day I'll finish the darn thing.  Luckily, I remember really liking the first book!  

    As for Bentley Little, his books can be very formulaic.  I still enjoy him, but I have to take significant breaks between titles.

    Leave a comment:

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