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Lusus Naturae: A Dark Days Club Novella

Lusus Naturae: A Dark Days Club Novella (Lady Helen)

Lusus Naturae: A Dark Days Club Novella by Alison Goodman

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


When I read a post in the Librarians’ Group that this novella was available online…

I snapped it up. I saw Ms Goodman speak at a Georgette Heyer conference a few years ago;

and she was a very engaging speaker.

Unfortunately this is a fragment which makes just about zero sense unless you have read the rest of the books. It is well written though, so if I do pick up the rest of the series I may revise my rating. May. I think every piece of published writing should make sense to the reader, no matter where they pick up a series.…

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Spotless (Spotless, #1)

Spotless by Camilla Monk

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I’m going to think about my rating. Rtc.

& I have thought. I had mixed feelings going into this book. The premise sounded good – & I really liked the cover art.

My Goodreads friend Christina really liked this novel, but Jacob really didn’t & Jilly ended up with a DNF. Sadly I’m with Jacob & Jilly on this one – in fact, Jacob’s review mirrors my own feelings so closely I don’t know why I’m bothering to write a review! (ok I do – because I review everything I read.)

I loved the excerpts from non-existent (but undoubtedly torrid! ) romance novels, written by literary stars like Gilda Sapphire & Muffin Thorpe. & I thought Ms Monk had a bright & breezy writing style – until she switched to a quite frightening scene of (view spoiler)[ threatened rape & mutilation. (hide spoiler)] This isn’t a twist, this is a promising author who hasn’t yet mastered their writing style. I don’t normally give warning about triggers as I believe we are adults who should make our own reading choices, but I went into this one expecting a Janet Evanovich in style, not the Marquis de Sade! I think this changed in direction could be quite traumatising to women who have experienced sexual violence.

Another irritant was the endless foreign phrases translated immediately into English. While I had already realised this wasn’t the fun, escapist read I hoped for, I didn’t want to work this hard at the read.This was just showing off.

March came across as more of a whack job than a tormented hero. Island often seem in more danger from him than the actual villains.

& finally – the proofreading. I gained the impression from the acknowledgements that Ms Monk did, or at least assisted with, the editing. If so, she did a wonderful job until the last few chapters when the typos come in – not thick & fast, but there are a few.

I won’t pursue this series any further but I think Ms Monk has potential & I might look at reading another of her books.…

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