Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Cathy Reviews: Vision in Silver + The Diabolical Miss Hyde

My mother in law Cathy is back today to share a few of her recent reviews :-) She's been on a bit of a roll lately, and I'm so grateful to her for picking up a little of my reviewing slack!

VISION IN SILVER
The Others #3
Anne Bishop
Urban Fantasy
416 pages
Penguin
Available Now
Source: Finished copy from publisher for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
The Others freed the  cassandra sangue  to protect the blood prophets from exploitation, not realizing their actions would have dire consequences. Now the fragile seers are in greater danger than ever before—both from their own weaknesses and from those who seek to control their divinations for wicked purposes. In desperate need of answers, Simon Wolfgard, a shape-shifter leader among the Others, has no choice but to enlist blood prophet Meg Corbyn’s help, regardless of the risks she faces by aiding him.

Meg is still deep in the throes of her addiction to the euphoria she feels when she cuts and speaks prophecy. She knows each slice of her blade tempts death. But Others and humans alike need answers, and her visions may be Simon’s only hope of ending the conflict.

For the shadows of war are deepening across the Atlantik, and the prejudice of a fanatic faction is threatening to bring the battle right to Meg and Simon’s doorstep…


CATHY'S THOUGHTS
Vision in Silver is the third installment by Anne Bishop in the Others series. I've had this book on my wish list for months waiting to journey back to Lakeside Courtyard. At the end of book two, there was a heightened animosity between the Others and the humans. Simon Wolfgard, with a select group of Others and humans, had rescued several blood prophets and now they are trying to figure out exactly how to reintroduce them safely back into the world. Meg Corbyn, a blood prophet living in Lakeside, tries to make a manual that will help assimilate the newly released blood prophets while she still is trying to figure out her new life. 

Ms. Bishop seamlessly manages to blend two major plotlines. The larger plot deals with the deteriorating relations between the Others and humans. A human group, NHL, is using propaganda and violent attacks to prove that they are superior to the Others. And the Others are trying to remember that not all humans are meat!!!!! It's a little terrifying thinking about it that way, but Ms. Bishop stays true to the animalistic nature of her characters and I find that engaging and commendable. 

The plotline that I love best is life in Lakeside Courtyard. Since Meg has come to live there with the Others, you can see such big changes from everyone. Simon, the Alpha wolf leader, tries to make life better for Meg by allowing more humans to live in the Courtyard. This is contrary to his innate nature. Ms. Bishop writes these characters so well that we feel their struggles and triumphs. I suppose one could make all kinds of analogies to our own world and the discrimination present today, but I just enjoy being immersed in the world that Ms. Bishop has created. She leaves me wanting to see how the different groups will grow together and create a new reality. 

What I enjoy most is the budding romance between Simon and Meg, though neither of them know it's a romance. They are the true center of this world and we feel that if whatever happens between them can occur, then there is hope for the rest of the world.
 

I can't wait for the next book. This series is so well done and is well worth the read. I am so glad that Jenny gave me the first book to review and put this series on my radar.

Rating: 4.5/5

Find Anne:



THE DIABOLICAL MISS HYDE
Electric Empire #1
Viola Carr
Fantasy/Steampunk
464 pages
Harper Voyager
Available Now
Source: Finished copy from publisher for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
Magic, mystery, and romance mix in this edgy retelling of the classic The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde-in which Dr. Eliza Jekyll is the daughter of the infamous Henry

In an electric-powered Victorian London, Dr. Eliza Jekyll is a crime scene investigator, hunting killers with inventive new technological gadgets. Now, a new killer is splattering London with blood, drugging beautiful women and slicing off their limbs. Catching "the Chopper" could make Eliza's career--or get her burned. Because Eliza has a dark secret. A seductive second self, set free by her father's forbidden magical elixir: wild, impulsive Lizzie Hyde.

When the Royal Society sends their enforcer, the mercurial Captain Lafayette, to prove she's a sorceress, Eliza must resist the elixir with all her power. But as the Chopper case draws her into London's luminous, magical underworld, Eliza will need all the help she can get. Even if it means getting close to Lafayette, who harbors an evil curse of his own.

Even if it means risking everything and setting vengeful Lizzie free . . .


CATHY'S THOUGHTS
Given the title of Viola Carr's new book, The Diabolical Miss Hyde, it's safe to assume that it's based on the classic tale of Jekyll and Hyde, but Ms. Carr shakes things up and puts a new spin on the tale. It is still set in Victorian London, but with a steampunk and mystical edge. Our protagonist Eliza is a female doctor and crime scene investigator keeping tabs on a serial killer loose in London. This is where Lizzie Hyde comes to help the investigation. Eliza is the prim and proper doctor whereas Lizzie is rough, wild and fearless. At the start of the story, Eliza tries to suppress Lizzie but as the plot thickens, they need to learn to work together. The telling of the story is well done and exciting because we hear and see everything from two points of view. Eliza and Lizzie both have a voice in their tale and because they're so different, we get very vivid accounts of their lives and struggles.
 

This book definitely has something for everyone–magical beings, mystery, murder, and even romantic undertones. There is a complicated plot and it is best to pay close attention to every detail. Everything has multiple meanings and the most intriguing things happen in the shadows. I found a line in the book to describe things beautifully: "A punctilious killer. A suspicious Royal investigator. A cunning lunatic. Each with the power to ruin her." That drew me into the story and I was eager to see where it would take me. We easily become invested in their lives and I was happy to find out that this is just the first in the series. I will get to see Eliza and Lizzie again as they continue to solve crimes and try to figure out a way to coexist.
                                                          
Rating: 3.5/5



Find Viola:


This book was sent to me by the publisher free of charge for the purpose of a review
I received no other compensation and the above is my (or in this case, Cathy's) honest opinion.

30 comments:

  1. wow I heard so many about The Others Series by Anne Bishop, I'm so adding those books to my TBR :D Lovely Review

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    1. I am glad that you liked the review. I am so glad the Jenny gave me the first book in the series because I might not have picked it up but I am so glad that I did!

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  2. Oh I so loved the first book but well I'm so blown away by this series so it was the same with this one. I really enjoyed the second as well, different thing, but it was good. Nice reviews!

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    1. I think the Others books just keep getting better. The second book was a nice twist on an old classic!

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  3. YES!!! Cathy I'm so happy to hear you love The Others and loved Vision in Silver! I was approved for book 3 and binge read the whole series in less than two weeks, so I feel completely lost waiting till next year for book 4!

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    1. Great minds ๐Ÿ˜ƒ! I am so glad to have read this series and I have jenny to thank for passing it on to me. I know it will be a long wait ugh!

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  4. I'm so happy to know that Vision in Silver is everything that I'd hoped it would be. I really can't wait to dive into my copy! I've been on tenterhooks about Simon and Meg's romance, so I'm doubly excited. :)

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    1. Ms. Bishop has done a wonderful job staying true to the characters but moving the plot along . Can't wait for the next one

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  5. Cathy, so glad to see you back on Supernatural Snark! :)
    I'm so curious about the Anne Bishop series. Everyone seems to love it and I still haven't picked it up. I love the sound of the characters and the budding romance just sounds so wonderful! I think I would love it.

    I like the sound of the 2nd book too. I like that it has 2 women working together through the plot! I will have to check it out.

    Lovely reviews! :)

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    1. Thanks Nick, it's an honor to be here. You won't be disappointed in he Other series. It's very well done. The Miss Hyde book has lots of twists in in.

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  6. I've heard such great things about the Others series, but I've yet to pick them up. I'll have to add them to my tbr pile and read them close to the release of the fourth book.

    I've a big fan of Victorian literature so having it retold with a new twist has me really excited. I'll be sure to check out The Diabolical Miss Hyde.

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    1. There is nothing better than binge reading a really good series. That is something to look forward to. I like that the main character in the Miss Hyde book was changed to a woman. Makes for some interesting twists.

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  7. I;m excited that you liked Vision so much Cathy! I just started this series and I just know I will be continuing with it.

    Lovely reviews!!

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    1. I think you will be hooked on this series. It is not one I would have thought about but I am so glad Jenny gave it to me. Enjoy!

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  8. Cathy you have me so excited to catch up on the Others series! I clearly need to make it a big priority! The Diabolical Miss Hyde sounds cool too, I always love reading fresh new spins on Jekyll and Hyde. Lovely reviews!

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    1. I am glad that I could spark your interest! You have some fine reading ahead of you!

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  9. Visions was my favorite in the series so far :) I am with you--I count down right after finishing. Now we have to wait. We may need to form a support group. :) Love your reviews Cathy!

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    1. I am in for the support group!! I love getting the next installment but read it so quickly and then want to kick myself because of the long wait for the next book!!

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  10. I love the Others! I listened to the first two on audiobook so I'll be grabbing this one in audio as well. I can't wait!
    And the second book, my friend has a copy and I have debated borrowing it. I really can't fit it in but I love the sound of it for the most part.
    Excellent reviews!

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    1. So glad you are enjoying the Others series..it does continue to get better and continue to move the story along. If you have time you should pick up the Hyde book. Glad the reviews helped.

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  11. I've heard such great things about Vision in Silver. And The Diabolical Miss Hyde looks so pretty it's almost unfair :) Two brilliant reviews - loved them!

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    1. Thanks and I am glad you liked the reviews!

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  12. Hi Cathy, Welcome back. I just started Vision in Silver on audio today I had to wait to snag the audio, I love this series so much and I am so excited for the Simon Meg romance. I really struggled with Ms. Hyde. It lacked focus and I wanted it ot be so much better. Glad to read your thoughts on it.

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    1. I am in agreement with your comments. Loved Vision in Silver. I thought the Hyde book was a very interesting premise but I mentioned that I needed to pay close attention because it was challenging to follow in some areas.

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  13. I should try to read book 2 in that first one, book 1 was good, just not, awesome but I still want more

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    1. I think book two develops the characters further and you may become more attached to them. Hope you give it a try.

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  14. Cathy I absolutely love the Others series and totally agree with your thoughts. I am curious about the Hyde series and it sounds like it was a pretty good first in series.

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  15. Oh, Cathy, I LOVE The Others! The series is just amazing, probably my favorite fantasy to date. I hang on every interaction between Simon and Meg. Yes, they're in a romance they don't quite know is a romance...yet. I'm anxiously awaiting when the light comes on and they finally get it! Now we must convince Jenny to read this series. Seriously, how has she not picked it up yet?!! :)

    I've never heard of The Diabolical Miss Hyde, but it does sound like a promising start. The split personality thing kind of freaks me out, though.

    Lovely reviews, Cathy! :)

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  16. I just recently read Written in Red and enjoyed it a lot. I want to take my time with them, but want to devour them at the same time. Self-control can be hard.

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  17. Awesome thoughts and excellently written reviews on both books Cathy!!!! However, your obvious passion on the Vision series makes me feel I should have read them all, like yesterday!

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