DNF – Oh No, We can’t go, it’s not worth finishing

DNF – Oh No, We can’t go, it’s not worth finishingGuns of the Wastelands by Leverett Butts

Genres: Historical Romance
Published by Indie/Self Published, Small Publisher on May 26, 2016
Pages: 254
Format: eARC
Source: Author, Kindle Unlimited, NetGalley, Publisher
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A mash up between the Wild West and King Arthur and the Knights of Camelot?  Sign me up!  I was eager to pick this one up and enjoy something creative and fun as it crosses gritty western with familiar and loved classic tale characters.  But sadly, I wasn’t able to finish.

I read through six chapters and the whole time I spent detached from the story or confused.  If I were to guess as to what was putting me off it was an issue of too much going on and going in different directions, but also the writing style.  Now, it’s possible that later all plot paths will come together and make sense and I have been known to get accustomed to a style after a period of time.  However, between the two issues and a few other things, I kept setting the book down and not feeling the urge to pick it up.

I won’t discourage others from satisfying their curiosity about the mash-up because tastes are different and this might be right up your alley.

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

DNF – Oh No, We can’t go, it’s not worth finishingThe Gun RunnerGenres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Carina Press on August 8, 2016
Pages: 304
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I picked up this book because I love mafia romances and was interested in trying a new to me author.  The blurb hooked me in with both a hero and heroine coming from shady backgrounds and keeping secrets set against the criminal world.

I started reading and got to chapter four, which is really not that far in, but it was enough for me to work out that I just wasn’t into this story.  I sat there trying to figure out what was causing the disconnect since not much had really happened yet beyond the intro to the characters and their situations.  Nothing rubbed me wrong or really annoyed me, but yet I was just not interested.  A mafia princess and a gunrunner should have pulled me right in.

A few things flagged like their instalust particularly hers and the fact that they didn’t feel edgy enough for their backgrounds, but again, that wasn’t really the problem.  I’ve decided that it is just my mood and to leave it at that.

After peaking at a few portions later in the book, I’m content with my decision to set it aside.  The heroine gets up on her high horse, going all princess-y, that he lies to her (um, she lied on important stuff to him, too) and well, cliffhanger.  Not that the cliffhanger was a deal breaker since the blurb warns folks going in that the story for this pair continues into another book.  Thing is, I’m pretty sure the warning wasn’t there when I originally requested the book.  But regardless, I’m not feeling it.

So… my decision is to leave it at a maybe later.

I didn’t get far enough in to make a recommendation or not so I guess I’ll leave it at read the blurb and other full reviews to come up with your own decision if it’s a possibility for you.

I received this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.

DNF – Oh No, We can’t go, it’s not worth finishingFirst Taste: Devon StoneGenres: Contemporary Romance
on November 18, 2014
Pages: 249
Format: eARC
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I got this one as part of the Red Hot Lovers Boxed set that I’ve been reading through book by book.  I have to admit upfront that I was only mildly intrigued by the blurb, but thought I’d give it a try since books have surprised me before and hooked me in.

Sadly, this was not one of them.

I DNF’d at chapter 8 when I just could not drum up any interest for the characters or the story line.  I feel a little guilty because the heroine is struggling with mental health issues in which she is fixated on scheduling and being on time because she was late to pick up her brother at school and he died during that time so she blames herself.  But her insta-drool and supremely awkward fixation moments over a guy who barely noticed her were just painful.   And I honestly wasn’t interested once things started getting laid out for this story- characters, plot, monologue and dialogues.

The story opens with Olivia getting ready for a job interview in full freak out mode needing her roommate to help her dress.  She can’t string two words together or focus her mind.  She is a nervous wreck, but that wasn’t so bad until the scene changes and she’s ends up at a Hollywood mansion for her interview and this totally freaks her out- forget the fact that if she gets her job she’ll be seeing a lot of this sort of thing.  Olivia’s never worked more than a backyard grad party as an intern who picked up the trash and rolled plastic ware and yet she tries to bluff with the event planner that’s she’s an old pro and sadly he sees right through her lies and is abrupt with her.  She can’t figure out why she didn’t get immediately hired as a premiere Hollywood event planner’s assistant to work ‘A’ List parties for the elite.  Then, Devon, the hero and son of the man hosting the party with the planning company she is interviewing for comes along to see her crying after she was rejected.  He insists the guy in charge hire her or he’ll lose his own job as some sort of ‘in your face’ to his dad and makes a pass at her before telling her he only used her to make his dad mad because he’s pretty sure she’ll fail and mess up his dad’s party.  He’s hot so naturally this rude brush off makes her all fluttery and she can’t get him out of her thoughts like he’s some knight in shining armor.

After reading her inner monologue and lusting over a rude guy she briefly met for several chapters, I just couldn’t.  Not for me.  Maybe it settles in later, but I’m going to let this one go and move on.

For those interested, I believe it’s part of a three-part serial so the story doesn’t resolve until the last book.

I received this book from the authors of The Red Hot Lovers Boxed Set in exchange for an honest review.

DNF – Oh No, We can’t go, it’s not worth finishingCondemned Series: Books 1-4 by Gemma James

Published by Indie/Self Published on November 23, 2015
Pages: 590
Format: eBook
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I was hooked by the a fifteen year old girl sending the boy, well, he’s technically a man, to jail on the accusation of rape. He didn’t do it. Now he is out and he wants revenge. He kidnaps her and to exact his revenge. So I should have known this was going to go all kinds of sideways. When it starts with the heroine’s stepbrother practically raping her and learning this is what she has put up with since she was 13 and now 23, I almost puked.

I held on hoping the hero would save her. You know the whole “you sent me to jail but I love you too much,” kind of troupe. Nope! The hero really is deviant and while I wouldn’t totally classify this one as rape, it is a dark look at getting revenge. I mean dark with breath play, whipping, spanking, forced blow jobs and so much more.

So I read on hoping this will get better, that things would turn around only to have the stepbrother kidnap her again. Then it becomes a rape fest that really had me stop. There was no hope this was going to turn around into something good. Yes it is dark, but this went beyond anything I want to read.

DNF

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • Debbie Haupt

    Yikes, thats all I can say

    • Shari Delighted Read

      You said it best!

    • LOL! Yikes was definitely happening.

  • Oh wow. Sorry these didn’t work for you. They all seem to have an interesting plot but if you can’t connect with the characters and had other issues with the story, then it’s not going to work. Thanks for your honesty though.

    • Shari Delighted Read

      We try hard not to do this, but sometimes we just can’t help it. If it’s just a story I don’t like them I try hard to finish. If it’s the writing, then sorry, I won’t finish it.

    • Thanks, Shane!
      I never used to stop when it wasn’t working and then I realized time was wasted as well as my patience. 🙂 Best to move on.

  • It happens. Sometimes a book just won’t grab your attention long enough to get through the book.

    • Shari Delighted Read

      Sometimes it happens.

    • Yes, exactly, Mary. Putting it down and going for one that is a better connect is for the best.

  • I don’t think any of these would be for me either. And that last one? Over 500 pages of that? No. Just no.

    • Shari Delighted Read

      I made it to the second story in the series, but when the stepbrother rapes her and then drugs her to get her to “enjoy” it I had enough. There were 4 stories to make up the 500 pages. I probably made it through 150. Just not worth it.

    • I like to try new to me authors/series and sometimes that doesn’t work out so well.

      Yeah, Shari’s book would have been a no for me, too.

  • Several of those looked like books I could’ve been convinced to if you had told me they were great stories. I love the ideas behind them, but I don’t think I would like them for the same reasons you don’t like them. I’ve read some dark romance type stories and even some erotic thrillers, but that last one doesn’t sound like something I would enjoy at all. I hope you have better luck in the future.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

    • Shari Delighted Read

      I would have enjoyed the dark erotic writing, but when the heroine is raped so many times, I just had to say no. She is raped, drugged, suffocated, beaten, left in a cold cage and her mentality is wrong. So wrong. I can’t blame her at all, because all the men in her life have betrayed her. I kept holding out hope someone would save her, but when she tries to commit suicide and her stepfather hides everything, I just gave up hope that anything would be fixed or done right. This poor woman needed some help out of the Hell her life was and I wasn’t going to continue reading just to give the author some Kindle Unlimited money at that point.

      • If you want dark erotic thrillers, try Comfort Food by Kitty Thomas. It is free right now as an ebook. Another good one is Insidious by Aleatha Roming (which is great on audio) and it’s on kindle unlimited. Both are stand alone stories.

    • This is exactly why I’m willing to give them a go. Sometimes trying a new to me author/series works out great and other times, no.

  • Oh dang. Sounds like a good call on all of them. That’s a shame. They sounded interesting. The delusional heroine in First Taste would have driven me crazy.

    I do love a dark read but it takes a special author to really pull those off. Bummer it was a miss as well.

    • Yes, delusional, that’s a good word for her. Sigh…sometimes it’s just best to close it and grab the next one.

  • I just had a dnf and was thinking it was a long time since I ran into a book that I didn’t want to finish. Sometimes just stopping is the best thing to do. I can see why you put each of these aside. Great post!

    • Thanks Carole! I used to never DNF, but then I wasn’t really jumping out and trying many new to me authors/series so I guess this will happen more frequently since not every book is for every person. 🙂

  • Sorry these didn’t work for you. Writing style can be difficult sometimes if it doesn’t work for you. I have DNF’d quite a few books for that reason, sometimes it gets better and other time snot so much and when you have other issues as well I can see why you DNF’d that one.

    First taste doesn’t sound like one that would work for me either with how she gets the job even though she’s not qualified and just because his the hero wants to get back at his dad, that’s just weird.

    And that third one sounds kinda dark. Not a set-up I would enjoy probably, I am not a fan of revenge plot lines in general and then with the rape scenes in there as well, i don ‘t think I would be able to enjoy that either.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on these!

    • It is still not easy to put a book aside and particularly for reasons like writing style, but I am doing better at understanding that sometimes a book just really isn’t for me and moving on.
      And then there are books like First Taste that have some real issues that go way beyond lack of interest or not matching style. That one did irritate with the situation. 🙂

      Glad you could visit today, Lola!

  • Sorry these were fails and some look good but your reasoning was sound.

    • Thanks, Kimberly! Yes, some really drew me in initially, but just didn’t work. Onward…