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Howdy YAL!

I used to be the blogger called YAL Book Briefs, but I grew bored of the handle and changed my name to Howdy YAL. I also respond to MJ. I like to read, write, eat truffles, and watch bad Lifetime movies. 


Starseed - Liz Gruder Before I read it:Requested it on NG because of the creepy cover. What do I say I'm morbidly curious about this one. I mean look at that thing. It's like someone wanted to imitate the Lux covers but couldn't afford to use real models so they photoshopped Barbie and Ken's face on there. Or it sort of reminds me of Earth Girls Are Easy that old 1980's movie. Sigh, don't expect me to finish this one, but I'm going to at least make an attempt just to see if your really can judge a book by it's creeptastic cover.After I read it:To see full review click here.You know, I actually feel bad about ripping into this one. And no it's not because I've learned that I'm an evil person and that I should go all buddy bear when I review books, that's not going to happen. Rather, I feel this book was written so horribly that it would be kicking a puppy or something. But on the other hand, this piece of shit is selling for seven bucks on Amazon. Seven freaking bucks for an ebook and it's hardly written where the price be justified. Sigh...I guess I'm going to do it. Just call me Heathcliff because I'm going to rip into this atrocity.The structure of the book is really off. Okay, so I can understand-for the most part-what's going on, but this book reminds me of what a third grader might write: Introduction to character, description, action. Rinse and repeat. And yeah, I get that when you write a book, usually your audience will want some sort of description. But knowing when and when not to insert description is crucial to the success of a story. Character development is another factor in having a successful story and the characters in this book were just horrible. I really didn't like Kaila. She's rude, obnoxious, throws tantrums, gets her way, and knows everything about technology (because apparently working an iPhone is a difficult task). Her boyfriend, or future boyfriend, or whatever Jordyn is is no better. He just reminds me of an alien version of Draco Malfoy. And really, if you don't your alien race to be found out you might want to lay off the silver spandex body suits and talk in proper English-just saying.The world building really wasn't that much better. This book makes Vanity's info dumps look minuscule in comparison. That's how bad it is. Powers are used by the aliens with very little consequences because hey they can turn back time just like Superman and erase memories and all that jazz. Really, all I have to say about the world building is that...no, I'm not going to kick a puppy.Because this is what this book is a puppy. I don't know much about Gruder's background, but everything about this book feels novice and that makes me feel sorry for it. Selling it for seven dollars though makes me angry. So while I feel like I should be gentle with the book to an extent because I really don't think Gruder at times knew what she was doing, I just can't. People are paying money for this book and it has gotten a ton of four and five star reviews. When it's...well, the majority of fan fiction that is readable is better than this. Look this book epitomizes what my issues are with self pub. For the most I think it's a great and wonderful thing, making work that otherwise would've been ignored by mainstream publishers is great, but when you try to sell something that is not ready to be sold it's just...it makes me want to bathe in bleach. Best Feature: Nice Concept. I like anything that has aliens it if done well, so I guess that's the best thing about this book. Though the aliens here are hardly hot or bad ass. Rather, they remind me of the aliens in that bad Tim Allen movie, Galaxy Quest.Worst Feature: I don't know. I really don't know. There are so many things I can criticize. And so many things that appalled me. I really have to choose just one? Okay, maybe what annoyed me the most about this book was the way it was written. The writing is very primitive in nature: introduction to character, description, action. Dialogue that just doesn't work. Character interaction that feels unrealistic. It just doesn't work.Appropriateness: Ugh, no. Alien probing, sexual harassing, characters who act like two year olds when they don't get their way....anyone who wants to protect their brain cells shouldn't read this one.