Geeky Girl's Graveyard Reads

Geeky Girl's Graveyard Reads

i love horror, fantasy, and other random genres. 

Review
4 Stars
Coffee With Poe
Coffee With Poe - Andrew Barger
While I have been a Poe fan for many years, I only know the basics about his life. Coffee with Poe was an enjoyable way to learn more about Poe without having to hit the stuffy history books. I found myself fact-checking the author, Andrew Barger, when details popped up that I found hard to believe. I found most of the events portrayed in the book to be accurate or at least based on established theories. However, as much as I want to believe Poe was a fan of coffee I have not seen much to back it up in online sources (I would love if someone proved me wrong on this!). Obviously there are many parts of the poet’s life that remain a mystery, including his death. Barger does a good job of incorporating some more respected theories into the story.

A few of Poe’s letters and poetry are interspersed through the text. The added context of the when and why he was writing these letters made these additions more enjoyable than they would be on their own. After reading Coffee with Poe I'm not sure if I would have liked Poe had I known him in person. In multiple letters to John Allan he both rails against him and then begs him for money, which is ironic and a bit childish. The author downplays Poe’s drinking, perhaps how Poe would have done in real life but does discuss Poe’s low tolerance of alcohol. Poe’s financial struggles, his romantic relationships, and the quarrels with his many detractors were also well illustrated in this work.

Why I didn’t give it five stars
There were some typos and editing oversights, especially towards the end of the book. Some of the dialogue, especially in the first few chapters, was not realistic and even a bit cringe-worthy at times. I almost didn’t make it past the first few chapters due to this, but I am glad I did as the book picked up once it got to Poe’s adult life. There were a few anachronisms, for instance a character ordering a Caesar salad while out to lunch with Poe. I don't think these were a thing at that time?! However these flaws are forgivable in the overall scheme of this book. A large amount of research obviously went into this work and these are just minor quibbles. I would recommend this to any fan of Edgar Allan Poe who wants to know more about the tragic but fascinating life of this author.
Review
4 Stars
Proven Guilty
Proven Guilty - Jim Butcher
Proven Guilty starts off slow and I had a difficult time staying interested during the first few chapters. The storyline picks up a quarter of the way through and then I couldn't put this book down. In this installment of the Dresden Files we get a more in depth look at Michael Carpenter's family. Molly, Michael's teenage daughter turns goth and gets Harry involved in strange happenings at a local horror convention, SplatterCon!! Charity, Michael's wife, has always served as an antagonist to Harry, and would prefer if her godly husband would have nothing to do with the haphazard wizard. We see another side of her in this book and get to know more about her past. While it's didn't make me like Charity I certainly felt more sympathetic towards her and her view points. Harry continues to struggle with Lasciel, the fallen angel trapped inside Harry's mind and fighting to take control of him. Harry again finds himself involved in fairy drama. Whispers about the traitor in the White Council become more concrete but we still don't know who it could be. I personally think it's the Merlin, but only time will tell!
Review
4 Stars
Dead Beat
Dead Beat - Jim Butcher
*Contains spoilers* I've been reading The Dresden Files on the recommendation of a friend. I've enjoyed the series thus far, but have not found the series particularly memorable. This book is my favorite so far, first off because I love to read about necromancy and zombies and secondly...zombie dinosaur? How can you go wrong! The struggle Dresden faces with accepting help from the demon Lasciel who resides inside his mind adds a new depth and darkness to the series and has Dresden facing the fact that that he can't always see things in black and white. The description of the Erlking was great. I wanted to yell at Harry as his actions to thwart the necromancers ended up helping them, but of course he prevailed at the end.
Review
4 Stars
Summer Knight
Summer Knight - Jim Butcher
Summer Knight is my favorite of the Dresden Files books thus far. Harry gets entwined with a Faerie war. These aren't sweet Tinkerbell type faeries either, but the stuff of old tales: treacherous and deadly faeries that are more likely to harm a person than help them. The faeries in this book reminded of those in Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange and Mr.Norrell, which is a good thing. I think that this book is a little less formulaic than the previous books are. It delves more deeply into The Never-Never and the creatures within, which shows off Butcher's creativity and the world's mythology. I also like the nods to Shakespeare and nerd culture. Harry Dresden always gets himself into impossible situations and I love to see how he manages to get out of them and save the day.