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Review: Endgame by Ann Aguirre

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Book Reviews, Reading | Posted on 15-09-2012

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Endgame (Sirantha Jax, #6)Endgame by Ann Aguirre
My rat­ing: 5 of 5 stars

Endgame is the final book in the Sir­an­tha Jax series, accord­ing to Aguirre, and it def­i­nite­ly shows. Every­thing gets wrapped up very sat­is­fac­to­ri­ly. Noth­ing new is intro­duced. Jax’s rela­tion­ships with March and Vel are both expand­ed in a delight­ful man­ner, and I love the way that works out. She also gets to devel­op a not-quite-moth­er­ly rela­tion­ship with Sasha, March’s adopt­ed son.

The entire vol­ume takes place on Laheng, home of the Lahen­grin. We’ve only met the race through Loras so far in the series, but their sto­ry is touch­ing. This is Loras’ sto­ry as much as any­thing, the sto­ry of the fight to free the Lahen­grin from the Nicuans and from the need to be owned (or “pro­tect­ed” as it is called). The action is bru­tal — Aguirre doesn’t hide the real­i­ties of war. She doesn’t dwell on it in an obscene man­ner, though, so the book is readable. 

Read­ing the end­ing of a won­der­ful series is also bit­ter­sweet, but at least Aguirre has stat­ed that she’ll revis­it this universe. 

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Review: Aftermath by Ann Aguirre

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Book Reviews, Reading | Posted on 09-08-2012

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Aftermath (Sirantha Jax, #5)After­math by Ann Aguirre
My rat­ing: 4 of 5 stars

Leave it to Aguirre to take her hero­ine in a direc­tion that is appar­ent­ly piss­ing off at least half of her read­ers (those who expect­ed romance). Sir­an­tha Jax is in fine form in After­math, stay­ing strong and true to her­self through an all-new set of tri­als (lit­er­al­ly) and trou­bles. Loy­al Velith stays by her side through­out, con­tin­u­ing to depict a friend­ship that goes beyond mere romance.

I don’t nor­mal­ly mine books for quotes as I read them, but two bits stuck with me from this book. Mus­ing, Jax thinks, “… the world moves on, even when you don’t want it to, even when change feels like the end of every­thing. It nev­er stops. That’s harsh and mag­i­cal and some­what com­fort­ing because noth­ing is immutable, how­ev­er much we want it to be. Moments can­not be caught like fos­sils in amber, ever-per­fect, ever-beau­ti­ful. They go dark and raw, full of shad­ows, leav­ing you with the mem­o­ries. And the world moves on.”

Lat­er, Velith says, “The heart is not a glass of water, but more like an end­less­ly pump­ing spring.”

There is so much wis­dom about love and rela­tion­ships in those words that I will remem­ber this book far longer than the plot details will nec­es­sar­i­ly stay with me. 

The plot is, of course, as can always be expect­ed of Aguirre, good. It hangs togeth­er well. There was a lit­tle drag this time, but not much. I am eager­ly await­ing the release of Endgame lat­er this month, and will be pur­chas­ing it as soon as it’s released.

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Review: Killbox by Ann Aguirre

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Book Reviews, Reading | Posted on 08-08-2012

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Killbox (Sirantha Jax, #4)Kill­box by Ann Aguirre
My rat­ing: 5 of 5 stars

Kill­box won’t make any sense with­out read­ing the pre­vi­ous three books, and I hon­est­ly feel that I should have gone back and re-read them before start­ing it. I was impa­tient for more fresh Aguirre after fin­ish­ing Shady Lady, though, and Kill­box is what I had on the Nook.

I real­ly love Sir­an­tha Jax’s strength and com­plex­i­ty. She has grown and changed a great deal over the four books of the series, and reflects on the changes in her­self dur­ing this book. Her rela­tion­ship with March has deep­ened, as well. The depic­tion of a mature rela­tion­ship being test­ed, rather than one that is fresh and new, is a nice switch from most of the books I’ve read recently. 

The friend­ship between Velith and Jax is also a trea­sure. It is rare to see a pure friend­ship between a male and a female in fic­tion, with­out any sex­u­al ten­sion enter­ing the pic­ture. We’re remind­ed that while he is an alien, Velith has had a human lover in the past, so it isn’t as if that is impos­si­ble between the two — it just doesn’t occur.

The book isn’t sole­ly about rela­tion­ships, of course — I just appre­ci­ate how well Aguirre depicts rela­tion­ships in and around the excel­lent plot. That’s the part that you need back­ground to understand. 

The Morgut keep com­ing, a big­ger threat than ever: they’re col­o­niz­ing instead of raid­ing. Jax secured a treaty with the Ithiss-Tor (Velith’s peo­ple), but there’s no help from them com­ing yet. Humanity’s sur­vival is on the line. Aguirre depicts bat­tle believ­ably, giv­ing a sense of the hor­ror with­out dwelling too much on gore. 

Lovers are torn apart, estab­lished char­ac­ters die, new ones come on stage. It’s impos­si­ble to know at any giv­en moment whether any­one, includ­ing Jax, will sur­vive from scene to scene. That cer­tain­ly kept me read­ing, and I think it will engage you, as well.

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Review: Shady Lady by Ann Aguirre

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Book Reviews, Reading | Posted on 07-08-2012

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Shady Lady (Corine Solomon, #3)Shady Lady by Ann Aguirre
My rat­ing: 4 of 5 stars

I have to give a fair­ly high rat­ing to a book that involves a woman who large­ly saves her­self from mul­ti­ple assas­sins (nat­ur­al and super­nat­ur­al) sent by the head of a drug car­tel. There are sexy men in her life (three, in fact), but she’s def­i­nite­ly the hero­ine here, not a cling­ing vine. That’s a refresh­ing approach.

To be hon­est I don’t think this book should be shelved with para­nor­mal romances at all. It deserves to be called urban fan­ta­sy, or some­thing along those lines, because rela­tion­ships are not the main focus of the plot. 

Corine has changed a great deal from the begin­ning of the series, and we learn much more about her back­ground in this vol­ume, explain­ing some of her behav­ior. The expo­si­tion is nev­er tire­some or with­out rea­son — it’s worked into the plot very nice­ly. I enjoy see­ing char­ac­ter devel­op­ment, and get­ting more of the “why” helps the read­er make sense of her decisions.

This vol­ume feels like the end of the series, but it was a nice lit­tle tril­o­gy and well worth reading.

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Review: Blue Diablo by Ann Aguirre

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Reading | Posted on 12-06-2009

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Blue Diablo (Corine Solomon, Book 1) Blue Diablo by Ann Aguirre

My review


rating: 5 of 5 stars
I can't think of a thing that wasn't right in Blue Diablo. I can think of one thing that made it stand head and shoulders above much of what I've read lately: Aguirre knows that sexual tension can be much sexier than explicit sex scenes! That is such a relief!

I'm looking forward to reading more about Corine and Chance. I've been waiting for more of her Grimspace series, so now I'm torn. Just give us more, Ann!

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