Welcome. This blog was started three years ago by four aspiring writers who are now three published authors of novels and short stories (Barbara Elsborg, Dawn Jackson, Arlene Webb) and one multiple award-winning writer (Laurie Green). We blog to keep readers updated on our new releases or other random topics. We hope you enjoy your stay. :] Coffee?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

So there was this book I was reading...

Alright, I finished it Monday, but I've been lazy about hopping on and telling you what I thought.

Susan Grant's book "How to Lose an Extraterrestrial in 10 days." Are you picking this up on your SLAR, Susan? Thanks for hopping on and paying us a visit earlier.

Reef is an intergalactic hit-man, taken as a child from his planet, bio-engineered to be neither man nor machine. When a failed hit goes bad, he finds himself in the hands of those he tried to eliminate. Rehabilitated and more man now than machine, he’s looking for a place to fit in.

Evie is a housewife, mother of two teenagers (I can sympathize there) and an entrepreneur. She's out trying to save the children of the world, one chocolate strawberry at a time. When the REEF (Robotically Engineered Enemy Fighter) needs a place to stay, the government contacts Evie, who in turn says she doesn't want a killer in her house, and that he wouldn't last ten days there. REEF takes her up on her offer.

Overall, a cute story, and an interesting beginning. The playful banter was charming. The teenagers were definitely teenagers, and the interaction between the characters very natural.
On the hot scale, it could have been turned up a couple of notches, I didn't break into a sweat whilst reading it, but I don’t require that in every story I read. Some I read for the *clears throat* sex, tension and all the complexities associated therewith, and others for the world building, the characters, and if I can relate to them.

The only complaints I had, that I felt affected me as a reader, were that too much attention was paid to the plots of other stories this one intertwined with, and that the REEF needed a little more edge to him. Many times during the read, I was pulled into back-story on something that happened in another book, with characters I knew nothing about. I like stories that are linked, but I like the links to be small drops here and there, characters I recognize, not a history lesson from another story. Stick to the characters and stories at hand.

Now I like my bad boys, and the REEF came across as such. Not as much as I expected, but I like the way Susan incorporated the transition into a humanoid from machine. Here we have a cold-blooded bio-engineered assassin and he acts like a pussycat. At times, that was amusing. At times I wanted just a little bit more of the cold-blooded bad boy.

Now, for what I liked. I liked that he ended up in the home of one of his target’s relatives, playing house. I loved the yappy little Chihuahua, who urinates on his leg when he rescues it. I’m not usually one for fluffy, fuzzy or cutesy critters, but I loved the big dog attitude of this little guy. “Yarp, yarp!”

Last but not least, I like the cover art. Probably the least controlled area a writer has to deal with, and maybe one they sweat over the most. It was well done, and it sells the book. I have friends that will pick a book up and buy it based on the cover. If they don’t like it, they don’t buy it. They say it’s hard to get past a negative image in their head. And I have to agree. If you’re a good writer, that shouldn’t matter, but unfortunately the readers out there form opinions starting with the cover. I’d be a liar, if I said I didn’t pick a book up because of the art on the cover, and I’m picky about art. Now that being said, I only will buy another of that author’s books, for what’s between the covers. (No pun intended.) Get me to read the first and hook me, and I’m yours for life. Susan, your cover is a winner.

What would I like to see? I’d like to see a little more action (I’m all about kick-ass fight scenes), more sex, and a tad more humor. I love humor that sneaks up on me and taps me on the shoulder when I least expect it. I'm sitting on the fence here. I really like Susan’s world building and the character interaction. I'll probably read another before my opinions are set in stone.
So, it looks like a trip to Borders is in order…


Susan Grant said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susan Grant said...

ET, not "RT" oops

Susan Grant said...

There were so many &%$# typos, I deleted and reposted:

I don't know what SLAR is but I got a Google alert you'd posted. My life resembles Evie's in that I've got teens to get to school, but wanted to drop in to say that ET is 3rd in a tightly woven trilogy. It can but shouldn't be expected to stand alone, just as a reader dropping into the middle of JR Ward's series wouldn't expect to know every name or past plot in the middle books. That said, it does stand reasonably alone. You miss a lot starting with the last book though!!!

This trilogy was sci fi rom com (written to be fun more than belly-laugh funny) and DIFFERENT from all my other 7 books, so if anyone is thinking of trying my stuff they might want to drop by my website and take a look at my printable book list with all the various series and stand-alones, from Pirates/Time Travel, to hard action, to SF to this trilogy, SF Rom Com. (No, you can't accuse me of writing the same thing over and over!). Glad you enjoyed ET, even tho you jumped into the series at the end!

Flick--LOLOL on summoning Clooney!!

Bye, bye! gotta go drive

Dawn said...

Side Looking Airborne Radar.

He he. My guess is the teens don't drive yet. You're in for a real treat. My oldest got his license this year and that was quite an experience teaching him to drive.
I will certainly check some of your other stuff out, and start at the beginning of this series.

Thanks for popping in.

Laurie said...

Oh, my. I see ya'll have been busy while I worked. LOL

OK, Dawn. You hooked me. Now I have to read this one. Bad boy assassin/pussycat. Can't resist the contradictions there.

Off to Amazon, I go...

Laurie said...

Oh, and thanks for stopping by, Susan. What a surprise.