Thistle (thistle_chaser) wrote,

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2016 books: The Original Adventures of Hank the Cowdog, The Wild Ones, Chasing Sunrise

The Original Adventures of Hank the Cowdog by John R. Erickson
Rating: Okay (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)

When I saw this book, I snapped up a copy. Long, long ago, I saw it on a Saturday morning Storybreak Special (animated half-hour long show based on a book! It was the best thing ever to young me!).

The story wasn't bad. A "talking animal" book, which is one of my favorite kinds. Extremely dated, but on purpose. Hank the Cowdog lived on a ranch, and a murder (of a chicken) took place. As boss of the ranch, it was his duty to solve the case.

I liked Hank's voice, but the story was just flat for me. I reached almost exactly a third of the way into it (30%) and gave up.

The Wild Ones by C. Alexander London
Rating: Okay (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)

Another talking animals book. This book had the odd thing of being well enough written that I enjoyed it, yet it was so full of plot holes. (The animals wore clothing, coats and hats and such, yet humans never noticed the clothing...)

Though a YA book (or younger?) it had some surprisingly dark scenes. A young wild/woods raccoon had to move into the city because his parents were killed, only to discover that the city was more wild and dangerous than the woods. At one point he was threatened with being "rabbited" -- nailed to the wall by his ears, and so if he struggled, his ears would be pulled long long a rabbit's.

Though the writer seemed skilled and could craft enjoyable sentences, the story just didn't hook me. Got a third of the way in (33%) before giving up.

Chasing Sunrise by Lex Chase
Rating: Hated (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)

This book was billed as dark and supposedly dealt with abusive relationships -- it should have been perfect for me! It started by doing the thing I hate: It had a glossary of terms and phrases that the story used. Dear Authors: If you cannot explain something in-story, naturally, you're doing it wrong. If you want to have a bunch of different vampire clans, introduce their names through the story as needed! If you want to have a bunch of different were-animals, introduce them to the readers through your characters!

Not only did this book have a glossary, it was so long that it took up the first 3% of the book! I skipped most of it and I was able to follow the story mostly fine.

I really shouldn't have bothered. If I had known this was a vampire story, I would have skipped it. The whole thing was overly complex (thus the need for the glossary), with a second world existing overlaid with our world. The vampires and were-creatures lived in that other world, keeping humans as cattle for food. The story followed a toddler as his royal parents were killed and some guy basically took ownership of the prince and raised him as his puppet.

The writing wasn't good, the story didn't hook me, and after the glossary that was three strikes. I gave up on it quickly.

Currently reading: Red Fox by Lara Fanning:

In the 1950’s, a Siberian scientist began an experiment with one goal in mind - to breed a domesticated variation of the red fox. After ten generations of breeding the scientist had reduced the adrenalin levels in the animal and created a tame creature named the Silver Fox.
Decades later, the Australian government use this knowledge to devise a shocking plan that will end humanity as the world knows it...

Though that summary has two typos/misspellings in it, I'm enjoying the story so far.
Tags: 2016 books, book review, book: chasing sunrise, book: the original adventures of hank th, book: the wild ones
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