Quote

Notable Quotable # 80

Conall described being awake the night after (referring to the night after a werewolf changes on the full moon) as akin to playing tiddlywinks, drunk, with a penguin – confusing and slightly dreamlike.

Collective Nounitude: Wolves/Werewolves

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Wolves/Werewolves

Wolf Pack by mail4mac (DeviantART) used with artist's permission

Wolf Pack by ~mail4mac (DeviantART) used with artist’s permission

Most Common:

A Pack of Wolves or Werewolves

Alternatives:

A Herd of Wolves

A Rout or Route of Wolves (when moving)

A  Red Riding Hood of Wolves

A Location of Werewolves

A Lunacy of Werewolves

My suggestions:

A Howl of Wolves and/or Werewolves

A Spook of Wolves (heard at night)

A Cycle of Werewolves

Icy Wolf+Night-Sky JournalSkin by ~savannahsage (DeviantART) used under Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons license, and with artist's permission

Icy Wolf+Night-Sky JournalSkin by ~savannahsage (DeviantART) used under Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons license, and with artist’s permission

Reason for choice:

Finishing Changeless (The Parasol Protectorate Book 2) by Gail Carriger,
which involves a couple of Werewolf packs and their related issues, and then starting the third book, Blameless

Sources:

Wikipedia

www.rinkworks.com

collectivenoun.co.uk

allsorts.org (wolves)

allsorts.org (werewolves)

REVIEW: City Of Bones By Cassandra Clare

 

I have made it quite clear before that I am often guilty of judging a book by its cover – If I like the cover art I am more likely to read the blurb and if the cover art annoys me I will likely not give the book a second glance – but I have not admitted that I also judge a book by the quoted people on its cover. If an author I like or admire has said something glowing about the book I am much more likely to read it, and likewise if an author I dislike is quoted I am more hesitant.

This was the case with City of Bones. On the front and back covers as well as in the page of praise inside, Stephanie Meyer of Twilight fame raved about the series, and the cover and blurb have been fashioned to appeal to the same demographic (teenage girls who like girl meets supernatural being styled romances). Now, I have been quite open with my disdain for the Twilight Saga in this blog so it will come as no surprise that I had a few worries about this book, and the series in general. However my brother (who has no interest in Twilight-esque novels and whose taste in YA is similar to my own) greatly recommended The Mortal Instruments series, and I have heard great things about them in general so I suspended my doubts and dove in.

What I found pleasantly surprised me. Yes, there was an element of Forbidden Love that has become such a cliché in YA literature lately, but it was not of the breed that really irks me, and was more true to the reality of puberty so it could easily be forgiven. Besides the Forbidden Love (which was less prevalent than the very brief blurb insinuated) I was quite impressed with what Clare has created. Her world is a clever combination of the real urban environment of New York paired with the hidden world of Downworlders (Werewolves, Vampires, Warlocks and a fascinating array of demons and half-demons) and the Shadowhunters that are trained to kill any Downworlders that break the Accords (a treaty between Downworlders and Shadowhunters). Her descriptions of the  physicality of different demons and locations hidden by glamour were evocative and fit perfectly into the urban setting. The settings are clever with a certain cheeky logic to them: from a diner that serves such delights as locusts with honey, whole raw fish and blood of various beasts, but then had a perfectly normal human menu on the back; to an abandoned building adopted by werewolves as a makeshift hideout with a glamour proclaiming it Jade Wolf Chinese Cuisine that is so complete that sometimes fledgling lycanthropes even deliver the occasional order of mu shu pork.

The plot moves very quickly from the set-up into the full-on action sequences. Clary Fray is the book’s leading lady, an ordinary teenager who knows nothing of the city’s secret underworld until she follows a couple of suspicious looking teens into a back room of the Pandemonium Club because she sees one of them draw a knife. Upon following them she sees a very strange altercation between the group and a blue-haired boy their companion (a gorgeous girl) lured into the room and subsequently witnesses the boy’s murder. When she tries to alert someone she discovers that no one besides her can see the mysterious trio, and at least one of the apparent murderers (a gorgeous boy with tawny hair and golden eyes called Jace) is very interested in her ability to see him. Meanwhile Clary’s mother has been acting cagey and after forbidding her to go out the next night (which she disobeys) calls her in distress, warning her away from their apartment before the line is cut short. When Clary, accompanied by Jace reaches the apartment it has been ransacked, her mother is missing and a monstrous beast attacks her.

From that point onward Clary is thrust into the world of the Shadowhunters (or Nephilim) a race of humans with angel blood that use runes inscribed into their skin and enchanted weapons to fight malevolent demons and other Downworlders. From Jace, his companions Alec and Isabelle and their tutor Hodge, Clary learns about the way of the Shadowhunters and her ingrained but forgotten connection to them while they try to uncover the whereabouts of her mother and the evil actions of a rebel Shadowhunter thought to be long dead.

There is plenty to like in this book (and hopefully the rest of the series), especially for teens and lovers of supernatural action, but unlike some tales in the same vein it isn’t simply love and action scenes with some filler masquerading as plot. The characters are well-developed, with true-to-life teen issues of identity, friendship and hormones making them seem more than just attractive teen warriors. The relationships and interactive dialogue between the characters are believable and there are some great witty one liners.

ultimately it’s not an intricate piece of literature, but it is a very well-constructed example of a genre that is growing from strength to strength, and it is highly enjoyable. I hope I enjoy the continuing installments just as much 🙂

I give City of Bones by Cassandra Clare:

4/5 Stars

REVIEW: From Dead to Worse By Charlaine Harris

From Dead to Worse By Charlaine Harris

When I started From Dead to Worse i thought it was going to be intense… and I was right. In fact this may have been the most intense book of the series (so far) simply because so much happened.

The book follows on where All Together Dead left off – in the aftermath of Cyclone Katrina and the attack on the vampire hotel, Pyramid of Gizah, many powerful vamps are dead or incapacitated (including Sophie-Anne Leclerq, Queen of Louisiana and Arkansas) and Sookie’s weretiger boyfriend, Quinn is missing. Sookie has returned to Bon Temps, her waitressing job and her witch housemate, Amelia, who is staying with her while her New Orleans home is repaired (and because she accidentally transformed her boyfriend into a cat during some creative sexual escapades and she doesn’t want her coven finding out).

 
The book starts off pretty ordinarily but quickly descends into a series of major events including:
  1. A Werewolf war which nearly kills Sookie and her shapeshifting boss Sam.
  2. A vampire coup in which many of the Louisiana vamps are killed (including the Queen) and in which Quinn plays a crucial part.
  3. Sookie meeting her great-grandfather who is a Faerie prince.
  4. Eric remembering when Sookie and himself had a relationship (in Dead to the World when he was bespelled by witches and lost his memory).
  5. Amelia’s coven leader Octavia tracking her down (as well as Amelia’s father paying a visit).
  6. Sookie’s brother, Jason, suddenly marrying his pregnant werepanther girlfriend Crystal in a werepanther wedding ritual which includes Sookie becoming Jason’s “surrogate”. This leads to her being forced to break Crystal’s uncle’s hand (he is Crystal’s surrogate) when Crystal is unfaithful.
  7. Bob (finally) getting turned back into a man.
  8. Sookie discovers her cousin Hadley had a son before she was turned into a vampire (Hadley was killed at the end of Dead as a Doornail) and on meeting the little boy discovers he is also a Telepath.

So…. overall an adventure so action-packed it hurt my head a little, but was nevertheless wonderfully addictive 🙂

I give From Dead to Worse by Charlaine Harris:

4 / 5 Stars

 

 

The OTHER Twilight and another Dead

Twilight

I contemplated doing an April Fools post about reading Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight and raving about how good it was (which to anyone who knows me and my anti-twihard stance would be a good gag) but even thinking about it made me cringe a bit so I didn’t bother 😛

One of the new books I started last night is called Twilight but it is a world away from the tween vamp-romance. From what is written in the blurb and cover reviews, which includes quotes like:
‘It seems the local undertaker, Fenton Breece, has been playing sinister games with the town’s dead.’ – Blurb.
,
‘This is Southern Gothic of the very darkest hue…To be read in broadest daylight.’ – Kate Saunders, The Times. 
and

It is doubtful a more brilliant or more sinister adult fairy tale will be written this year.’ – Tom Cox, Daily Mail.

and with what i’ve read so far, I know I’m in for a wild (and creepy) ride 🙂

Coincidently, the other book I’ve started is also a Southern story, and promises to also be a wild ride:

From Dead to Worse

YAY! The next Sookie Stackhouse book 🙂 I only read the prologue last night, and I know this one is going to be a wild ride for two reasons:

  1. The prologue was a re-cap of what happened in the last book which if you read my review of All Together Dead  you will know ended quite dramatically. The previous books haven’t needed a prologue to re-cap, so I’m anticipating a rollercoaster ride with this one 😉
  2. The blurb ended like this:

‘And when the fur has finished flying and the cold blood has stopped flowing, Sookie’s world will be forever altered…’

O.O oh boy.