Bite Sized Books // A Mixed Bag of a DNF and a Palate Cleanser Read

22 January 2019

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Today’s post of Bite Sized Books only has two reviews and neither review is me shouting for you to get reading. One is a DNF where it very much felt like I was saying it’s not you it’s me when I finally admitted defeat and DNF. And the other is a book which felt like a palate cleanser. It was good but it wasn’t amazing and I felt like it was getting my brain ready for whatever book I picked up next.

Shaodw of the FoxShadow of the Fox (Shadow of the Fox #1) – Julie Kagawa
Published: 2nd October 2018
Source: Netgalley
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
My Rating: DNF
A single wish will spark a new dawn.

Every millennium the missing pieces of the Scroll of a Thousand Prayers are hunted, for they hold the power to call the great Kami Dragon from the sea and ask for any one wish.

As a temple burns to the ground Yumeko escapes with its greatest treasure – the first piece of the scroll. And when fate thrusts her into the path of a mysterious samurai she knows he seeks what she has. Kage is under order to kill those who stand in his way but will he be able to complete his mission? Will this be the dawn that sees the dragon wake?

Enter a beautiful and perilous land of shapeshifters and samurai, kami and legends, humans and demons…a world in which Japanese mythology and imagination blend together.

I didn’t hate this book. But I didn’t love it and ended up DNF-ing which was unfortunate. It was nothing against the book, I actually really liked so many aspects of the story but I think it was very much I was not in the mood for the book and something didn’t click and so I ended up DNF-ing at the end of 2018.

This book seriously made me question at what point you should DNF. I found the story interesting and original. The exploration of Japanese mythology and folklore was fascinating and done well so that someone knows very little (like me) didn’t feel lost within the story but instead felt like they were being told but it also wasn’t too heavy handed so you feel overloaded with information either. It was gradually interspersed and that made me like it so much. I think my issue was very much I wasn’t in the mood for this book but also I didn’t connect with the characters. This may have been because there were multiple POV and we all know how I feel about those, or maybe my not being in the mood drive a wedge which stopped connecting, whatever the case it was very much a ‘it’s not you it’s me’ moment in DNF-ing. I felt so bad and questioned whether or not I should persist for the story but I knew how it would end. Me in a slump disliking the book when it really was a good story.

I did try and push through my mood and see if the characters would click for me but sadly that did not happen. If you are looking for a book with an interesting storyline with mythology and folklore you may be unfamiliar with then this is for you. There are plenty of far more positive reviews out there which shows it wasn’t the books fault.

Last Good Man
Last Good Man (Crown Creek) – Theresa Leigh
Published: 25th July 2018
Source: Free
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
My Rating:
Cooper Grant is not my type. Yes, he’s drool-worthy, with that glint in his blue eyes and the jaw-dropping way he fills out his jeans. Yes, other women might fall all over themselves for a glimpse of his slow, crooked smile. I’m not other women.

He hates me. And the feeling is mutual.

In a town as small as ours, it’s pretty hard to avoid him...and it’s completely impossible once I wake up in a hospital bed to find Cooper pacing the floor of my room.

He’s rumpled. He’s frantic. And he’s swearing I’m his fiancee.

What the hell?

I hate him, but he saved my life. So when he asks me to lie and pretend we’re engaged, I have no choice but to play along. One moment we’re fighting like usual, the next moment he’s kissing me and slipping a gorgeous ring onto my finger. It’s enough to give me whiplash… again.

And maybe it’s the bump on my head, but it’s getting pretty easy to pretend I’m in love with him.

Now, instead of avoiding him, I’m surrendering to his crushing kisses. Our fiery hatred for each other isn’t nearly as hot as the nights we spend entwined.
The engagement is fake. The love is pretend.

But the way I ache for him is real.

And now I want to know… Can your worst enemy be your best lover?
Does it sound harsh to call this book a good palate cleanser? Because it was an excellent palate cleanser of a book. It was enjoyable and easy to read and never gave me any urge to DNF… but it also won’t be a book I throw at everyone to read and I may forget about it in another couple of weeks. But the times I was reading it it was awesome.

This book could totally raise questions of what makes a good and a bad book for me but let’s not get into that debate today.

It’s a fake relationship book of sorts and that is totally what made me want to read… along with the fact it was a freebie read I saw on an author newsletter that I kind of couldn’t help put download. I did wonder if it was going to be a whole amnesia storyline from the summary (because you could totally believe it from that, right?) but it wasn’t. Thankfully, it was all a fake relationship instead for the convenience of Cooper being able to go in the ambulance when Willa was hurt. I much preferred that storyline than any amnesia one.

Cooper and Willa were a darn cute couple who for many reasons ended up hating each other. Cooper was definitely the cause of that but really, the main culprit was Cooper’s best friend who just should have been honest from the start (and he kind of pissed me off because of that). Cooper was a nice guy who was sticking up for his friend and this started a whole campaign of not liking Willa. And Willa was a good friend who was willing to sacrifice her reputation to help a friend out. Fast forward a few years and they’re stuck disliking one another all because one dude couldn’t be honest with his best friend. Someone is a dickhead here and it wasn’t Cooper. Anyway, vague allusions to plot aside, it was a good book. I liked Seeing Willa and Cooper get closer and become friends and then something more. It had moments of me feeling like maybe the romance moved too fast, but it was always fun to read. I would have liked more friends time before they moved to the sexy time, but you can’t have everything.

I may not feel like this book is going to stay with me forever but who doesn't want an enjoyable read to prepare them for their next read?

I have two questions, what makes you DNF a read, and can you ever see when it’s a you thing and a book thing? And do you have palate cleanser reads where you like a book but you very much feel like it’s getting you ready to read something awesome?
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