Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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Recent reading —

Got stuck in a traffic jam on Saturday. Thirty minutes stop-and-go, and what did I get to show for it? A lousy reserve ribbon. It’s officially “Reserve Winners”, but unofficially “First Loser”.

And the girl that beat my lovely Kenya? Not a tenth as good as she is. The judge goes on my “To Avoid” list, since we apparently have fundamental disagreements about correct type and movement in Cavaliers.

Phooey.

But! Nice weather, for a change! Hot, even! Since this was a nearby show, I was home every afternoon. Planted out the peppers, at last! And the zinnias — at LAST! They weren’t in great shape: too long in small pots under lights. But I started a bunch of ’em, so if half survive, that’ll be enough.

Also read several books, starting with A Princess of Roumania, by Paul Parks.

This book was a World Fantasy Award nominee. I really wanted to love it, and I honestly thought I would, but honestly, I couldn’t get really attached to any of the characters. Yes, I liked the dog. I loved the whole concept of the dog! I loved a lot of the concepts, in this book, but I didn’t love the book.

Also, for me, there was too much time spent in the point of view of the evil Baroness. I mean, she was well-drawn and everything, but I found myself just skimming her chapters.

Overall take on the book: neat concept, neat world, excellent writing, didn’t like it. Too bad!

So then I read Maximum Ride by James Patterson. Again, I thought I would really love it — again, it fell a little flat for me. For totally different reasons. It’s meant to be a YA and I get that, but there were too many suspension-of-disbelief problems for me — regarding the underlying idea and the plot both. We’re superstrong and can punch like mules kick, only we also have light bones! Explain how we don’t shatter our bones when we hit someone?

And the bad guys — sorry, didn’t believe in them much.

Also, the superpowers were a little much of a muchness! We can fly! AND talk to animals! AND breathe underwater! AND read minds! O-Kay.

Anyway, kind of a relief I wasn’t overwhelmed, since there are zillions of books in the series and now I don’t have to buy them. Though I’m tempted to get the one that focuses on Fang. I did like Fang.

THEN I read Ghost Country by Patrick Lee.

Whoa.

That was a thrill ride. Fast paced? You have no idea. I can’t think of anybody who can make you turn the pages faster. Loved this book. Better than the first, even, and I loved that one! I read the whole thing in one swift evening, stayed up late and everything (I never do this!).

Patrick Lee is the very newest addition to my preorder-anything-he-writes list of authors. I’m dying for a sequel to Ghost Country, but hey — anything he writes, I’m right there.

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