The story premise is unusual, something I haven‘t come across before. Crime Noir with a horror element, a possible apocalypse on the horizon. An STD turns you into a beauty, and possibly makes you self-combust. Bummer.
Conspiracy, intrigue, good cops, big business gone bad, scientists good and bad, a really nasty bad guy… a little bit of everything. And besides one pretty predictable thing at the beginning this is well plotted, believable and not boring.
For mature readers. A smart set-up with proper character development. Good sense of humour. Plenty of swearing and full nudity. Violence. Gore! Some yucky moments. And a Hollywood-worthy cliffhanger at the end. I will definitely continue. Good stuff!
DNF at 36%. I just can‘t develop an interest in the story. They finally got their job, after a lot of set-up and not much happening. And still not much happens. This lacks the action and the suspense of the first book. Or it takes too long to get there. I really tried, but I don‘t care. Which is a shame, because I really like Callie, Elena and Askok.
I also read a lot of online magazins, like Clarkesworld and Lightspeed Magazine. But also Tor.com provided a ton of material.
Comics also became a large part of my reading enjoyment, partly to blame on comiXology and their devilish sales. My favourite comic series, all caught up to the latest issue: Saga, Vol. 1 and Lazarus, Vol. 1: Family
And we had the end of an era with the final Kate Daniels novel, Magic Triumphs! Luckily Ilona Andrews is working hard on writing other fun stuff, for example Iron and Magic.
I still listen to audiobooks, but I am pretty ambivalent to the experience. If I have the time, I rather read than listen. I keep missing too many nuances, when listening. And I can’t sit motionless and listen, it just makes me sleepy. Listening so far has always been a substitute, when I couldn‘t sit and read. Maybe I need to pick up long walks as a hobby…
One of my favourite audiobooks in 2018 was Blue Remembered Earth. Not because of Alastair Reynolds—I specifically picked this book, because it is narrated by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith. A god amongst audiobook narrators! Ok, the book was good as well…
I found Kobna through listening to the most fun series I read in 2018: Peter Grant and Rivers of London. Hail to London‘s most entertaining wizard! Harry Potter in a police procedural for grown-ups and a lot of fun. Plus I get to go back to my beloved London, where I lived for four years and that is still sorely missed.
My most conflicting relationship with an author in 2018 was with Dan Simmons. Ilium netted five stars for it‘s sheer inventiveness, although I struggled with the minutiae of the writing. The sequel, Olympos, ended up as a DNF, because the crazy amount of details and neverending bla-bla-bla of not getting on with the plot superseded the inventiveness. Strike three was The Abominable. I had fun with the mountain climbing descriptions, but the story did not do much for me, was incorrectly labelled as horror and just dragged insufferably. Done, thanks!
My love of all things underwater brought me to the very good Starfish and Into the Drowning Deep, but also to the incredibly pulpy Meg. Embarassingly bad, politically incorrect, sexist, but fun. I even read the sequel… The movie wasn‘t much better, but had Jason Statham in it. Your argument is invalid.
And although I still (mostly) continued my Urban Fantasy hiatus, Vigil proved to be a highly entertaining break from said hiatus and was a fun tour of Brisbane.
I had an excellent reading year and I hope I will discover many more fun books in 2019!
+++ Some potentially boring statistics, aka my tally for 2018:
January – 2105 pgs February – 1652 pgs March – 2730 pgs April – 1250 pgs May – 3111 pgs June – 2693 pgs July – 2940 pgs August – 2480 pgs September – 2080 pgs October – 1761 pgs November – 1537 pgs December – 2378 pgs
My page count is allover the place! The lowest month was April with 1250 pages, the highest May with 3111.
My first time with Valerian and Laureline. 3D chess, holy Star Trek! Originally published in 1976. Has a pretty old-fashioned and, dare I say it, cartoonish look to it. But then it is about 40 years old. Laureline is mostly in the sidelines, with a supporting role and the whole shebang is a little sexist, but considering the comic’s age I can live with that.
My free Kindle edition (kindle unlimited/amazon prime reading) from 2010 does not have the best resolution, the speech bubbles are a little out of focus.
The artwork grew on me pretty quickly. Guys in 70s hippy clothing, what’s not to like. Good story, too. Pretty chatty for a comic, though, with a lot of text. Sometimes overly crowded with speech bubbles.
I liked the artwork, colouring and plot. Aged fairly well, although it doesn’t have any of the flashiness and visual depth of modern comics. I would recommend this to friends and maybe even get another volume. I have not watched the movie yet, but I might do so now.