Friday, February 1, 2013

Double Review: "Ruined" and "Faery Tales and Nightmares"

Hello, my loves! 

I know. I haven't actually written a book review in a while. I'm not sure how I'm going to proceed with this, whether or not I'm going to combine a written and video post together or just do video reviews and add them as content along with the blog hops, challenges, and giveaways on the written site. *shimmy* I'm pretty sure I'm going to do some written reviews, or at least combinations of written and vlog. So those of you who prefer reading the review over watching it... never fear! I haven't forgotten you! 

Anyway, the following is for the "Nothing But Reading Challenges" Read-a-thon this week. 2 books in one go... because I ran out of days to post 5 video reviews as was my original goal! Oops. 

Anyway, enjoy!

by Paula Morris
"Faery Tales and Nightmares"
by Melissa Marr

Books Reviewed

I was disappointed by this book for many reasons. Mostly because there was so much that could have been done regarding the ghosts of New Orleans but the opportunity was just kind of wasted to focus on a weird love-hate relationship going on between the main character and the local school uppers.

Also, I understand that it gets really aggravating when someone used to general equality finds themselves in a culture that is very-very-very much centered around status. However, judging that culture without understanding it makes a person just as ignorant and backwards as the people they disapprove of. That being said... I was not fond of the main character's constant whining about how New York was so much better than New Orleans because of the "equality" factor and the lack of "social class". Apparently in this book's New York there was also a general absence of "rules" as well as a huge lack of respect from 15 year olds for adults in general.

Every time you turned around in this book and someone was saying "This might not be safe", our main gal was getting huffy over the fact that someone was telling her what to do. So... of course she does the opposite.

"Don't go into the cemetery by yourself. There are drug dealers and criminals there and it's dangerous for a young woman." Practical advice... reasonable and well supported. Response? "You can't tell me what to do... I'm going to go in to that cemetery the first chance I get because it's apparently so interesting that you have to tel me not to go there."

Yeah. So, just completely disregard the fact that you were just told that this is a hive for criminals and go ahead and do what you want... because your SOUTHERN aunt doesn't understand that you're a BIG CITY girl and can kick the butts of any group of gang members that come up from behind the tombstones. 'Cause you've walked all by yourself in downtown New York without getting mugged.

*irritated mumbling*

Not to mention when the girl finds out she can SEE A GHOST her initial reaction isn't "Oh crap! Oh crap! Am I crazy?" it's "Oh crap. That handsome guy Anton had to see me get locked in a cemetary. Oh, now my Aunt is telling me what to do again. Like I'll listen to her."

No talk about her reaction to the ghost until much later, which is absurd unless you 1. are used to seeing ghosts, 2. forgot that you saw a ghost, or 3. are a little dumb.

Predictable plot, underdeveloped characters and relationships.

Uninspiring in general, but not crap.

It was entertaining at least. I read through it without wanting to throw it against the wall, which is saying something really.

I wasn't impressed at all by this book. When I discovered that it was a book of short stories I was really optimistic because short-story books can be really fun with the constant changing and movement between characters and storylines.

However... this book contained stories that were neither entertaining nor well written. Many of them were not even developed enough to be considered stories. I had to ask myself more than once "What was the point of that?" after reading one of the shorts.

There were a few that were promising, but were too centered around "magical destiny" romance interests to be good.

I felt like many of the stories could have been written by an overly romantic 12 year old, writing about subjects that she knows are popular but doesn't understand... like the drug issues.

All of the stories were very much surface and I find that unappealing in a short-story. To me, though a short story is...well...short, its power is in conveying a message or emotion effectively in a small space of words. Without doing that it just becomes an incomplete thought or an odd and half thought-out daydream.

Honestly, I can't say that none of these stories wouldn't have been good as books. There were a couple that probably could have been enjoyable with a bit more love-and-care. It just seemed like the author was trying to jot one story after another out for the sake of a compilation.

Anyway. Disclaimer here... this is totally my opinion and Ms. Marr's books are popular despite my nonfavoritism. This means that there are PLENTY of people out there who love these books. You may be one of them. Take my review with a grain of salt and go find out for yourself if you like the book.

I know that there are books that I love that others have hated. It's just personal preference.

So, while I have to give this book a 1/5 because I personally didn't like it... you or others might enjoy it.

I wouldn't hand it to you and say it was good, though.

It was better than a kick in the rump, at least...or a kale and spinach smoothie.

Until Next Blog

Read On!


  1. I enjoyed watching your reviews on these two. Sorry they didn't add up in your opinion - I haven't read either of them so I don't know how I would feel. I know that I didn't enjoy watching Brave because I felt the main character was 'bratty' and wouldn't listen to anyone older than her so I probably wouldn't appreciate that. Jaclyn @ JC's Book Haven

  2. Nice website, Auggie. Did you do your own design. All my blogs are heavy on content and light on bells and whistles. This has a nicely focused feel and your reviews are honest and sometimes brutal, but you don't take cheap shots like a lot of critics do. I don't share your taste in books, but I'm glad I took a look at your site. Hope you enjoy real success with this.

    Jaclyn, I think you missed the point of "Brave" or maybe the movie appealed more to a 58 year-old, white-haired conservative geezer BECAUSE she was a bit bratty. In the reconciliation between Mom and Daughter, both learned something and the father-daughter relationship really got me. I have a spunky daughter like that with two older brothers. One of my proudest moments was when a smart-mouthed eighth grader said something rude to her and she pasted him - laid him out on the floor in the hallway at school. Her two brothers had a "chat" with him later. She used to complain that all the boys in her school were afraid of me and the boys, but they were also respectful of that right cross of hers.

    In Brave, Merida did learn about listening to her parents before it was over. You want your lead character to have some flaws. The best stories are the ones where the hero or heroine learn something about themselves and change as a result. Sounds like the characters in the books Auggie reviewed never learned anything about themselves. It's a mistake a lot of new authors make.

    Enjoyed visiting Auggie Talk. Keep it up. - Tom

  3. Thanks for the warning on these. I had wanted to read the Fairy Tales and Nightmeres for a while, just because I like short story books, but if they aren't well plotted, there is not much of a point to reading them.