Thursday, 7 January 2016

Mini-Reviews: Lord of Misrule and Curio

Mini-Reviews: Lord of Misrule by Rachel Caine and Curio by Evangeline Denmark

Lord of Misrule

Lord of Misrule by Rachel Caine book cover

Author: Rachel Caine
Series: Morganville Vampires, #5
Format: Paperback, owned
My rating: 3 / 5

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In the college town of Morganville, vampires and humans coexist in (relatively) bloodless harmony. Then along comes Bishop, the master vampire who threatens to abolish all order, revive the forces of the evil dead, and let chaos rule. But Bishop isn't the only threat.

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

Lord of Misrule is the fifth book in the Morganville Vampire series, and I’ve got to be honest, it wasn’t quite what I had expected. It continues right after the events in Feast of Fools and an all-out war is brewing between Amelie and Bishop, with Claire and Co. caught in the crossfire. I love how much Claire has grown over the past couple of books, and I’m really starting to like her character. Shane is still Shane, and I doubt he’ll change that much, in honesty. Myrnin, though, has become one of my favourite characters in the series. I love how unpredictable he is, and he’s added an extra vibrancy to the series that was missing. I was a bit disappointed with the lack of Eve and Michael: it felt like they’ve been pushed aside and the focus is turning toward other characters.

With all the characters developing so much since the first book, I’m a bit concerned that the plot seems to be all over the place. I was struggling to see where the series is going at the end of the last book, and after the cliff-hanger ending here I’m even more confused! While I did enjoy the story overall, I though it took far too long to get to the point. Considering I flew through each of the previous books in the series in a couple of days a piece, it was a bit of a surprised that it took me over a week to get through 348 pages. I haven’t a clue what went wrong, but that addictiveness that made me want to keep reading has disappeared. The second book, The Dead Girls’ Dance, still remains my favourite in the series, and I really hope that Lord of Misrule was just a bump in the road and not a sign of things to come. I do own Carpe Corpus, so I’ll be continuing on with all my fingers crossed that I’ll enjoy it!


 Curio by Evangeline Denmark book cover

Author: Evangeline Denmark
Series: Curio, #1
Released: January 5th, 2016
Publisher: Zonderkids Books
Format: eARC, kindly provided by the
publishers via Netgalley (Thank you!!)
My rating: DNF

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Grey Haward has always detested the Chemists, the magicians-come-scientists who rule her small western town. But she has always followed the rules, taking the potion the Chemists ration out that helps the town’s people survive. A potion that Grey suspects she—like her grandfather and father—may not actually need.

By working at her grandfather’s repair shop, sorting the small gears and dusting the curio cabinet inside, Grey has tried to stay unnoticed—or as unnoticed as a tall, strong girl can in a town of diminutive, underdeveloped citizens. Then her best friend, Whit, is caught by the Chemists’ enforcers after trying to protect Grey one night, and after seeing the extent of his punishment, suddenly taking risks seems the only decision she can make.

But with the risk comes the reality that the Chemists know her family’s secret, and the Chemists soon decide to use her for their own purposes. Panicked, Grey retreats to the only safe place she knows—her grandfather’s shop. There, however, a larger secret confronts her when her touch unlocks the old curio cabinet in the corner and reveals a world where porcelain and clockwork people are real. There, she could find the key that may save Whit’s life and also end the Chemists’ dark rule forever.

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

DNF @ 26%

*I received an ARC from the publishers via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This didn't influence my opinion in any way.*

Sadly, Curio and I weren’t meant to be. Despite being drawn in by both the intriguing synopsis and gorgeous cover, I couldn’t get into the story. I really like the concept, but I felt the world-building was too unclear and I wasn’t a fan of how it was presented. My reaction after reading the first couple of chapters was ‘what the HECK is going on?!’ Quite frankly, I was lost. The book begins on a fast-paced note and we get a lot of information very quickly, but I don’t feel that information was clearly explained before we’ve zoomed on ahead to learning about something else. I felt like I was continually playing catch-up and only managing to glean half the story. Also, I felt the timing in action sequences (or any time there was a change of setting, really) was quite choppy and didn’t flow naturally. It felt more like a summary of an action sequence, and I had difficulty building up a clear picture of what was occurring. (As I mentioned earlier, I’ve read an ARC copy of the book so much of this choppiness may have been rectified in the finished product.)

The characters are usually my make-or-break point when I haven’t settled into a story, and sadly I didn’t click with them, either. Grey isn’t a heroine I could easily click with. While a lot of effort was put into convincing me she was a strong, capable and gutsy protagonist, I wasn’t able to believe it. Once Whit came on the scene, she acted like a love sick puppy (and this was within the first few pages), and it set my expectations for her character on the wrong footing right from the outset. Unfortunately, Curio just wasn’t the right book for me. I read the first quarter of the story, and I felt it best to walk away rather than continuing on reading and ending up resenting it completely.


  1. a bit sad, as curio would have been a good fit with me, but reading your review kinda makes me hesitate

    1. I'd say give Curio a go, Ailyn! I was sure I'd love it, but it could have been down to timing that I couldn't get into the story. I really hope you love it if you read it, and thanks for stopping by!

  2. Sorry to hear you didn't finish Curio. I thought it would be a good read, and it does have a gorgeous cover. But guess it's not meant to be!

    Majanka @ I Heart Reading

    1. I was so sure I'd love Curio, and I was very surprised that I couldn't get into the story :( Maybe it was timing, but it just didn't work for me. (I absolutely adore the cover though! :D) Thanks for stopping by, Majanka!

  3. When I saw Curio I though the cover was gorgeous but something about the summary didn't click with me :/ I love the Morganville Vampire series! I've read all but the last book and the plot has moved on so much, it's unreal. But I have to say that the last book I read in the series didn't seem to click as much as the others. Anyway, I hope you enjoy the rest of the series :) Great reviews!

    Zareena @ The Slanted Bookshelf

    1. Thanks Zareena! I've really enjoyed the Morganville Vampires series so far, and I can't wait to see how things progress, but I am a little worried with the amount of books there is in the series. I read the Sookie Stackhouse series a couple of years back, and the first ten or so books were really good, but I thought the final two were a bit of a disaster! Hopefully this series won't end up like that :D



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