A Bitter Feast by Deborah Crombie My rating: 5 of 5 stars Wow, we’re already at the 18th instalment of this great series. When I picked this book up, I was slightly worried how I would like it, considering that I haven’t exactly had much luck with long-running series this year; the latest Dupin a disappointment almost as badly as the latest Bruno (review here). Would Deborah Crombie let me down as well? Would she make me wish for Duncan and Gemma, whose exploits I’ve been following for years, to finally ride into the sunset? The answer, fortunately, is a resounding “NO!”. Set this time in the Cotswolds – and thus outside Duncan’s and Gemma’s jurisdiction – we find ourselves at Beck House, the summer house of Melody Talbot’s parents, Ivan and Addie. What was planned as a carefree weekend for Duncan, Gemma, Melody and Doug with a charity luncheon turns into something much more sinister when it comes to light that one of the victims of a car accident had already been dead at the time of the collision… The other victim of said collision is actually Duncan Kincaid himself – fortunately alone in the car at the time….
Fallen by Benedict Jacka My rating: 3 of 5 stars Let me state clearly where I stand when it comes to Alex Verus: I think he’s the greatest Urban Fantasy protagonist ever. I’ve enjoyed every single book in the series and I enjoyed this latest instalment as well – just not as much as most of the others, unfortunately. Why though? The trademark humour is there, Luna is there and so are Anne, Variam, Arachne and others. Sadly, they mostly take a place on the backseat this time. Luna barely gets any serious “stage” time; she’s generally around and worries a lot but doesn’t get to do or experience much. For such an important character that’s pretty sad. We do get to see more of Anne who has a more “active” role in the proceedings but she remains unrefined and pale compared to many other characters. Maybe part of that is my own perception, though; I’ve never felt that Anne added much to the books – she always felt like the obligatory love interest and I never found her especially interesting. It’s probably because of that I don’t care very much about the role she plays in this tenth book….
Sword of Destiny by Andrzej Sapkowski My rating: 5 of 5 stars “‘Who the hell are you?’ Geralt asked again, leaning forward. ‘What are you doing… in this forest? How did you get here?’ The girl lowered her head and sniffed loudly. ‘Cat got your tongue? Who are you, I said? What’s your name?’ ‘Ciri,’ she said, sniffing.” Once more we return to Geralt of Rivia, the eponymous Witcher, and his deeds. Mostly, though, “Sword of Destiny” serves to define Geralt with respect to his friends. We get to meet Dandelion again, and, of course, Geralt and Yennefer of Vengerberg cross paths several times as they are… Well, whatever they are, they certainly don’t know themselves. Most importantly, though, Geralt meets Ciri, the Child of the Elder Blood, for the first time. Ciri, who will become so important in Geralt’s life. We meet her three times throughout the stories in this book which are loosely connected to each other but mostly show us who Geralt truly is. The more I read, the more loose threads I dimly remembered from the entire saga actually turned out to be picked up and resolved. I liked this book the first time I read…
… but the git statistics for Exherbo’s repositories have been static for over a year. Since I found an easy way to revive them, they’re back, live and updated daily: https://mailstation.de/egitstats/