Books we just can’t finish!

Books we just can’t finish!Mutationem by Phoenix Jericho

Genres: Sci-Fi Romance
on March 7, 2017
Pages: 454
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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Review by Sophia

An intriguing spin on ‘Venus, give us your women’ becoming ‘Mars, give us your men’ was enough to snag my interest in this sci-fi by a new to me author.  I’ve always enjoyed when a survival desperation element is present in a story and this one with a world-wide nuking that leaves only the partial crew of a deep-space colony ship (which all happen to be the women of the crew in one fluke accident) as the only survivors of the human race, seemed a good bet to engage my interest.

I dove in with curiosity and excitement.  I was brought up short by a different tone than I was expecting, but thought to give it some time to adjust to the author’s style.  A flippant and humorous tongue in cheek flavor can be a fun change up, but it was unexpected and had nuances to it that jabbed at me.  I couldn’t decide if this was a serious piece or utter comedy.  Then it started flipping rapidly between narrators and again, though disoriented, I kept at it for a little while.

There are elements that I would love to explore further with the emerging story of the mother, her baby girl, and the baby’s cat protector along with the over-arcing dilemma of staying alive and keeping the human race going.  And I had a giggle-snort moment when just as the crisis is hitting home, the story introduces a Lesbian character- yeah, that is handy on one level particularly for her, but just salt in the wound of all the women who just lost the male half of the race and are looking at a bleak future.

But for now, the tone of the story and the loose, rapid shifts in perspective kept losing me and there was not enough to keep my interest for the moment.  So I’m going to put this back on the stack as a ‘maybe later’ when I’m in the mood.

DNF at 6%

I rec’d this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.

Books we just can’t finish!Until SeptemberGenres: M/M Romance, Contemporary Romance
Published by Riptide on February 8, 2016
Pages: 298
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DNF’d at Chapter Six

I picked this one for the moving storyline the blurb offered.  It hints at so much going on beyond a simple romance and I love complex stories.  And I was right on the money.  This one starts in a dark, sad place and it continues there only slowly hinting at blue skies in the distant part of the book.

Archie Noble grew up hard and fast from having a drug-addicted mother and then life on the Cree Reservation.  He got out and was determined to get as far as possible from his roots.  The only thing tying him to his past was his little sister.  Margie would have better than he did if he could help it.  But now Margie and her husband are gone and she leaves self-absorbed shallow living Archie custody of her two young children.

Ryan grieves the loss of the woman who was like a sister to him.  He will be there for the two little ones even if dealing with their uncle is more than difficult.  Ryan has no common ground with this other man even if they are both gay.  Ryan wants a husband and family.  He’s a nurturer and loves his job teaching small children while Archie doesn’t believe in long term relationships, love or family though he’d better figure the last one out quickly.

And now you’re wondering why I set this one aside, right?  Yeah, this was a book that pulled me in from the beginning.  Archie’s early story came first and that was a good thing or his present day behavior would have had me slapping the book closed sooner than I did.  There are interesting dynamics and friction caused by how these two guys perceive each other and how their pasts shaped them.  I loved all that.  And I truly wanted happy things for the kids and the men.

I stopped because I kept setting it aside.  I was distracted and couldn’t bring myself to read on.  I’ll save this one for later.  Or not.  No promises.   It’s a mood thing and not an aversion to the writing or the characters, I think.  Mood readers will get where I’m coming from.  So I’ll put a tag on the page and let it sit some more.   But it’s also possible that there is a reason that it’s not grabbing me.  This one has sat on my shelf for a while.

This is an older release so there are plenty of reviews to help you get a feel for the book to see if you’d like it so check those out.  I think the target audience will be m/m Contemporary Romance fans who like a more challenging romance.

My thanks to Riptide for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Shari is the Delighted Reader. Married to her Prince Charming and mother to two Princesses and one Prince. When she is not slaving away as Cinderella she loves to get lost in the pages of a good book. Never without a reading device and a few good paperback books, because she never knows when she might get 5 minutes to read!
  • I’m sorry you couldn’t finish these. I would be put off by rapid changes in perspective as well. Maybe you can go back and finish reading them one day. 🙂 ~Aleen

    • Thanks, Aleen!

      I wasn’t completely down on either of them which is good. Moods, yeesh. I’ve figured out that I have a never going to finish pile, but also a maybe later one that works better for me.

  • I’m sorry you weren’t able to finish these – especially Until September. That was one of my favorites from last year! I hope it grabs you the second time around.

    • Yeah, Angie! I was probably feeling the need for something lighter at the time. Sometimes reading too many emotional books in a row will do that for me. So best if me and the book do not torture each other. 🙂 Good to know that you loved it. Gives me hope that I will, too.

  • Sorry you weren’t able to make it through these ones. I haven’t had the chance to try either of them. There was one book that I dnf so this year. It had a very detailed and graphic rape scene with a main character and it just turned my stomach and ruined the book for me. I hope your next reads are better! Great honest feedback!

    • Oh yeah, that would have been a tough one for me to stomach, too, Julie.

      Most of my DNFs are lack of interest though yes, there are a few that I will never read because of some act I can’t get past or a character that was making me insane. 🙂

  • It happens. I hate not finishing a book and usually finish just so it doesn’t annoy me that I didn’t. lol

    • LOL, it really is annoying to set a book aside unfinished. Even in the ones I’m not into, there is usually something that I want to find out about. This is partly why I started treating my DNF pile in two separate stacks with one being a ‘maybe later’ so I can give it another go after a while.

  • Sorry these were better for both of you. I can totally relate to having a book just not hold your attention even though there isn’t really anything exactly wrong with it. I hope your next reads are better.

    • Yes, that’s exactly it half the time with me and a DNF. It’s just not for me or not for me right now. Thanks, Carole!

  • Both books are new to me and I am sorry they disappointed you. DNFing is never easy, but we would never try new authors otherwise.

    • Thanks, Kimberly! Yes, this is a good point. Nothing ventured and all that. I do tend to be more willing to try new books and authors knowing that if we aren’t a good match then I can back away or try later.

  • Oh I think I remember you mentioning book 2 at some point. I know I remember that cover. It’s hard when you just keep putting it down. I have a few like that right now and I probably should follow your lead and call it a day.

    • More than likely. I’ve had it in my GR ‘current reads’ several times and barely get a chapter further along each time before I’ve pulled it and replaced it with other books. Yeah, I’m never sure when to declare enough is enough, but I figure a book that’s been sitting over a year and then taking me a few weeks once I do start it should probably just be let go for now.

  • RO

    I really like the way you guys did this. It’s already the pits when you can’t finish a book, but to actually review it so prolifically along with the specific details of why you didn’t finish is just excellent. ( There’s no way I would even have the patience or skill to write about something that I could only get into for 2 chapters-lol) Mad props and happy Saturday! Hugs…

    • Thanks, Ro!

      It’s part of my plan to make myself set a book aside if it’s not my thing or doesn’t work right now. If I took it for a review then I still feel it deserves the review and besides, it might catch someone else’s eye and interest them even if it wasn’t my thing. There have been a few where I didn’t have much to say, but I (we) do try. 🙂