Maverynthia: Library of the Labyrinth of Blue

Writer, blogger-er and twitter-er

The Betrayal Knows My Name, Volume 3

The Betrayal Knows My Name, Volume 3 - Hotaru Odagiri This was going so good, and then it gets to the ending where it pulls out all the "women are weak and need men" and that's when it turned to crap.

The Black Rose (The Brothel Diaries, #1)

The Black Rose (The Brothel Diaries, #1) - Rae Rodriguez I'll admit I'm not into erotica. Main due to the fact of the way the scenes are written. They just come off as hilarious to me with all the wanting and disrobing and even sometimes the throbbing and pulsing. (This story contain no throbbing, quivering and pulsing).
This story regulates all of that to the end of the book where the beginning is the set up and I really like that. It takes it time to set a scene rather than someone walking through a door and clothes are flying everywhere.
While this does exist in a world of vampires and such, for this story however, it wasn't a big focus of the encounter which may be good or bad depending on what you want.

Legend of the Galactic Heroes, Vol. 4

Legend of the Galactic Heroes, Vol. 4 - Yoshiki Tanaka, Tyran Grillo Over there's not much going on action-wise in this book, it's all political maneuvering. Overall however another good read.

Alice in the Country of Hearts, Vol. 3

Alice in the Country of Hearts, Vol. 3 - QuinRose I was liking this series so much and right at the end it's decided that Blood is going to override whatever choice Alice made for herself and force her to do what he wants. Including sexually assaulting her again. This is not OK. She made her choice and they all should abide by it. But no, Fedorabro has to go force her of course because what is an otome game (and a manga based on an otome game) without the main character becoming a doormat at least once.

How She Got Those Scars

How She Got Those Scars - Olivia Hennis Another story set in the Iron Garden world. This one felt like a snippet of a much bigger work and leaves you kind of feeling that your missing something to understand what's going on. Like this is a teaser to a book or such.
Overall still a good story about a Sandling who goes to search for her lost love, the only clue being a mirror.

Gene Mapper

Gene Mapper - Taiyo Fujii, Jim Hubbert I started to read this and was inundated with technobabble about some strain of rice. Then we get people calling a woman doing her job a bitch as well as saying that Google somehow caused the internet to die out completely and it's replaced with TruNet. We get sentences that invoke images of abuse that involve "spanking" Mother, which is some kind of computer system or something?
They also go on at length about 32-bit dates causing the end of the world VS 64-bit dates and 128-bit dates. My head started hurting form all the bullshit when they said that gene mapping was as easy as XML sheets. No really it's called gXML. Then they are wondering why their crops are growing all funny. I got to about 11% before my mind just noped out of the book. The author just didn't do the research on things combined with the misogyny I just ain't having it.

Karneval Omnibus (2-in-1 Edition), Vol. 3: Includes Vols. 5 & 6

Karneval Omnibus (2-in-1 Edition), Vol. 3: Includes Vols. 5 & 6 - Touya Mikanagi Ends on a cliffhanger.

A Taste of Faerie

A Taste of Faerie - Olivia Hennis it is what it says on the tin. It's both a story about getting a taste of fae brew, an a short story about passing by the fae. It would be nice to have a full book of these slices of people interacting with the fae, both good... and bad.

Robopocalypse

Robopocalypse - Daniel H Wilson I got a feeling this was going to be "that kind of book" from the first few sentences. "That kind of book" being a dudebro book where all the women are barely there and everything is death, shooting and violence with next to no character development. Any development there is involves hurting people, insults, or other displays of machoism.

This is indeed that kind of book. There are only three women at the end of the book. The other disappear or die. The three left over are "fragile pretty" prize that Cormac gets at the end of the book. Mathilda which is the female sidekick that you get in video games that tells you your mission. Doesn't actually DO anything nor have any agency, she is just there to keep the plot moving. The last one is a humanoid robot named Michiko. She looks human, the only robot to look human and be gendered female. The rest of the robots are "brothers" and male.
All the black people are either dead or disappeared by the end of the book. They do not help the final push to save the world. Other POC fade off or are mostly killed off. The white edgelord bro gets his moment of glory before dying while the other are killed off in gory ways. There's even a scene where some Osage people leave a Cherokee kid in the middle of some woods swarming with robot to "make him a man". Note the author is a Cherokee citizen. The way the Nomura is portrayed is like a typical weeaboo would do. Japanese peppered through out his passages. "Akuma" which is akin to demon/devil, Senshi which is warrior/soldier, "Anata" which is darling and endearing term for "you". Then 'defense' is spelled exactly like how people who scream "waifu" would say it. "Defensu". It's English, you can make the note that it's English.
It's no wonder that Archos wanted to kill everyone. If this is what humans are going to do and how they write really, they deserve death. Humans are only capable of violence and death.
Also it should be mentioned that men are either called by their name or are called "human/the human". You can guess what women are referred to. "females/the female" . One woman gets a scar and is called "pretty" by the author. It's rather telling how little the women are given any agency past "the female". One senator dies the noble heroic death where she "runs out of stamina to climb a fence" and makes the sacrifice to save her children. Plenty of shitty scenes like that.
As for the book itself, it reads like a bad B movie with scenes of gore being described, guns, things blowing up people dying. You can probably pick any B movie and you'd get the same feel for the story.
Honestly that Ibis book I read had more nuance with the characters, even if all the women were just sad male sexual fantasies. The Izanami book even had a woman that *gasp* was a major player. This book is just sad and pitiful.

The Girl from the Sea

The Girl from the Sea - Shalini Boland I received this ARC from NetGallery.

First of all I want to say that this book gets a trigger warning for domestic violence, gaslighting and I'd say rape by deception. This book also contains some girl hate and gendered slurs.

So this book is about Mia who has amnesia. I'm not sure amnesia really works like it does in the book, but it's plot amnesia for the book to work.
I'll also mention that this book is not supernatural, though Mia does have some hallucinations.
It's hard to review this book without spoiling all the whole plot. I will say the attempted murderer was predictable, however there is a twist to it as well.

First of all, I didn't really like how weak Mia was when dealing with Piers. Though it's good that she does finally tell him off. It's also good that when Piers comes back angry and drunk that he doesn't do the predictable thing other authors would have him do and rape Mia. He instead chooses to break her things before leaving.
I don't like the use of gendered slurs however they are not super frequently peppered through the book so it becomes a minor annoyance. A good portion of them and thrown by the "villain" of the story.

Overall I enjoyed the book, I wasn't able to predict the twist, however I knew the "killer". A good quick thriller to read if you are into psychological thrillers.

Cardfight!! Vanguard, Volume 7

Cardfight!! Vanguard, Volume 7 - Akira Itou A new arc has appeared!

Slum Online (Novel)

Slum Online (Novel) - Hiroshi Sakurazaka, 桜坂洋 So imagine a fanfiction about fighting games. OK.. now open your eyes! Yes this is a book that is basically about a dude that somehow gets a girlfriend and treats her like trash, but she sticks with him anyways. That's after you are left wondering how they even hooked up and when they started dating as she's mentioned so little past a part that you see on the cover where she's squeeing for a stuffed animal and of course dudebro gets it for her. Also she's terrible at fighting games of course.

Expect TONS of info dumping about how the fights are going, tons of info about button presses and how generally polygons are rendered. Tetsuo/Etsuro (KANEDA!) also describes real life sounds as "sound FX".
Then in the end it's alluded that Jack's player is a woman and OF COURSE then this whole book turns into a man's quest to best a woman that is super awesome. Like a crap ton of narratives I see out there.

Overall super boring novel about a guy that plays video games online too much.

Matched

Matched - Ally Condie The worst thing about this book is that it's boring. Nothing really happens until about 80%. Everything else is just kind of a slow burn.

There is a love triangle going on. Though I'm kind of glad it doesn't get super annoying and Xander actually helps Cassia out in the end.
Overall though there was too much about Ky and not enough about Cassia. Ultimately it is a story about a woman pining after a boy.

I don't know what the diversity quotient is, given of course that nobody's skin is describe so I assume white.
Girl hate was on the low to non-existant end. There doesn't seem to be a lot of sexism either..only because the characters really do nothing.

So if you like slow books where not much happens, that are sort of sci-fi-y 1984 big brother is watching. Then this book might be for you.

Devils and Realist, Vol. 8

Devils and Realist, Vol. 8 - Madoka Takadono This one tries to show the back story of Kevin and William a bit.

Tale of the Waning Moon, Vol. 1

Tale of the Waning Moon, Vol. 1 - Hyouta Fujiyama This book is the typical yaoi plot. Man rapes hero, hero falls in love with rapist. This book goes even so far as to say there are different types of rape and some are better than others. I give it a second star only because this doesn't consume the entire book and is mostly devoid of sex for the most part.

The Betrayal Knows My Name, Volume 2

The Betrayal Knows My Name, Volume 2 - Hotaru Odagiri This one was just grindy. It would probably be better if I had the individual volumes, but I don't. Also yet more characters as if we aren't confused enough.

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