Monthly Archives: May 2016

Level Up: A Geek Romance Rom Com-Cathy Yardley

Standard

Plot: 3/5     Characters: 4/5     Writing: 3/5     Entertainment: 4/5

If you like geeky stuff and romance, give this book a read. It’s a fun little book.

Tessa Rodriguez is determined to get her dream job as a video game engineer, even if it means designing a game based on her favorite show in three weeks. For that to work, however, she’ll have to call on her fellow fandom followers and break into the boy’s club at work. That includes Adam London, Tessa’s co-worker and roommate. He’s never seen Tessa as anything more than just “one of the guys,” but when his friends wager an interesting bet alongside her video-game projects, things between the two start to change.

For my first introduction to New Adult Fiction, I was impressed. The characters were especially well written. Everyone is a very believable twenty-something just trying to figure out how to move forward in their personal and professional lives. With this sort of book, it would have been so easy for Tessa to be a John-Green-esque “I’m not like other girls because I like geeky stuff. Look how deep and unique I am” trope, but she wasn’t. She was a girl who just so happened to be introverted and like geeky stuff. The same with Adam. It would have been so easy to make him a nerd-loser type, but he wasn’t. He was pretty cool.

I also appreciated that the author tried to deal with the boys-club culture that exists in geekdom, especially in gaming, but, unfortunately, she didn’t deal with it enough. One scene handles it beautifully and Tess knocks a more everyday creep down a few pegs  in another scene, but it would have been nice to see her fight the system a little more since it seems to be such a big theme.

Even with that said, the book was a lot of fun and I’d love to see more from this author. If geeks falling in love sounds like your cup of tea, Level Up your e-book collection and give this book a try.

As posted on Amazon on March 30 2016, with modifications

Not Dead Yet: A Zombie Apocalypse Series (Book 1)

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Plot: 4/5     Characters:2/5     Writing: 5/5   Entertainment: 3/5     World Building: 5/5

If you like gritty adventure and zombies, you’ll enjoy this, just be ready to put up with a horrible main character.

18-year-old Jack Strapper is expelled from Eton in England and has no choice but to join the army. Tales of an easy post in Ireland seduce him into leaving home, but what he doesn’t know is that Ireland is experiencing an apocalypse. While the Potato Famine has ended, the dead have come back to feast on the living. Now trapped in a war against the dead, Strapper must find away to survive both the zombies and the members of his unit who suspect him for what he really is: an abosolute coward.
I must say, this is the best indie book I have read in a while. The formatting is perfect, I didn’t notice any spelling/grammatical errors, and the narrative voice (as much as I hate the narrator) was expertly done. The world building is creative and solid. It was so fascinating to see how another time and place deals with a zombie apocalypse. The author knows just how much military exposition and lingo to use without bogging down the story, which I really appreciated. Those elements alone were strong enough that I wanted to see it to the end and recommend to others who like this genre.

Too bad I had to put up with Jack Steapper the whole time. It’s not his cowardice or his giant charade that bothered me, because I think those are good character flaws that can lend themselves to a lot of development, but there wasn’t a single redeeming characteristic about him. At first, I thought it would be funny watch his lies get bigger and bigger, mostly by chance and accident, but it wasn’t. It was nauseating because he’s just a terrible human. It the first time I’ve actually WANTED a character to get eaten by zombies.

It’s really a shame. I would love to explore this world and its possibilities because those elements were brilliantly done but I can’t bring myself to up with Captain Strider for another book. If he didn’t bother you and you read on, get back to me and tell it how it is.

As posted on Amazon on March 31st, 2016 with slight modifications.