Publicat în R.L. Naquin

Monster in My Closet (seria A Monster Haven Story, volumul 1) – R.L. Naquin

Monster in My Closet  (seria A Monster Haven Story, volumul 1) – R.L. Naquin

Editura: Carina Press

Data publicare: 30 iulie 2012

Numar pagini: 224

 

Sinopsis:

Am incetat sa mai cred in monstrii de multa vreme. Dar stiam ca nu imi imaginez lucruri atunci cand am descoperit unul in bucataria mea, pregatind briose. Il mai vazusem si inainte: pandind din dulapul meu, speriindu-ma de moarte pe cand aveam 5 ani. Se pare ca totul fusese de fapt o neintelegere, iar acum Maurice are nevoie de un loc unde sa locuiasca. Cum as putea sa ii spun nu?

Pana la urma, am fost intotdeauna ca un magnet pentru cei cu probleme emotionale, iar asta nu numai in contextul jobului meu de organizatoare de nunti. Fiind capabila sa simt toate sentimentele celor din jur poate fi o adevarata problema. Nu ma intelegeti gresit, imi place sa ajut oamenii – si… ne-oamenii. Insa aceasta abilitate m-a transformat intr-un festin pentru un incub, un demon ce se hraneste cu energia emotionala. Acum, miresele mor pe capete prin tot orasul iar casa mea a devenit un adapost sigur pentru supranatural. Trebuie sa invat sa imi concentrez talentul si sa inving demonul inainte ca acesta sa mai apuce sa isi mai ia drept gustare vreo femeie nevinovata si apoi sa vina si dupa felul principal…

Parerea mea:

Multumesc editurii Carina Press si autoarei, R.L. Naquin, pentru sansa de a citi aceasta carte. Recunosc ca m-am indragostit de la primele randuri de ea. De fapt..nu, mint! Cred ca din momentul in care am citit titlul am devenit innebunita sa aflu despre ce este vorba in carte. Am prostul obicei de a-mi forma anumite asteptari de la o carte in functie de titlul si coperta acesteia, asa ca bineinteles, si in acest caz, odata ce am vazut aceste doua elemente am banuit/sperat ca si povestea va fi la fel de originala. Si din fericire, nu m-am inselat. Am adorat romanul lui R.L. Naquin de la prima pana la ultima pagina!

Am descoperit o poveste total neasteptata, incarcata de magie, de creaturi supranaturale adorabile, de personaje amuzante, pasaje nostime, replici acide sau dimpotriva, atat de dulci incat le-am citit iar si iar, nevenindu-mi sa cred ca poate exista un roman atat de dragalas. Pentru ca per ansamblu, cred ca acesta este cuvantul care defineste cel mai bine Monster in My Closet. Da, povestea are si o parte dramatica, care reprezinta de fapt si intriga volumului, dar eu am fost atat de fascinata de cateva dintre personajele ne-umane, incat orice altceva a fost pus in umbra de ele. Am senzatia ca orice as spune despre aceasta carte nu ar putea exprima cat de mult mi-a placut. Cred ca daca lista de carti necitite pe care le am in biblioteca nu ar fi atat de lunga, as reincepe romanul chiar acum. De fapt, de-a lungul lecturii, m-am intors de cateva ori la unele pagini de la inceput pentru a le citi din nou. Nu pentru ca as fi uitat sau nu as fi inteles ceva, ci pur si simplu pentru ca mi-au placut prea mult.

Povestea incepe in dimineata in care Zoey, eroina romanului, o tanara de 28 de ani, organizatoare de nunti, cu o casnicie ratata la activ si total ancorata in realitate, fara absolut nici o legatura cu orice lucru paranormal, isi da seama ca in casa ei se afla un intrus. O privire aruncata inspre acesta o transporta in amintiri, mai exact in noaptea in care avea 5 ani si a vazut un monstru iesind din dulapul ei.  Iar in prezent, in fata ei se afla exact acelasi monstru pe care il daduse uitarii, presupunand ca fusese pur si simplu o spaima copilareasca. Iar exuberantul monstru, numit Maurice, o intampina cu cafea, un mic dejun delicios si rugamintea de a-i oferi un adapost pentru o perioada. De aici pana la o viata care o ia razna total nu mai e decat un pas. Zoey afla ca propria ei capacitate de a empatiza total cu cei din jur, de a le simti toate emotiile si toate sentimentele nu este un lucru normal, iar asta o transforma intr-o tinta pentru un demon, un incubus, pentru care ea reprezinta o masa delicioasa. Si in acelasi timp, toate femeile cu care Zoey a interactionat in ultima vreme au devenit si ele tinte. Iar cateva dintre acestea si-au pierdut deja viata.  Zoey trebuie sa invete sa traiasca cu toate fiintele supranaturale care au dat navala in viata ei, sa descopere in ce mod poate evolua relatia pe care tocmai a inceput-o cu un reaper, un slujitor al mortii ce colecteaza suflete si mai presus de orice, sa scape pentru totdeauna de demonul ce ii ameninta viata si ei si tuturor femeilor din jur, fie ele umane sau nu.

Povestea este bine inchegata, nu am detectat nici macar un aspect care sa para fortat sau nelalocul lui. Personajele sunt de departe cel mai savuros aspect al cartii. Cred ca Maurice a devenit unul dintre personajele mele preferate din toate cartile pe care le-am citit vreodata, Zoey este extrem de credibila, in ciuda faptului ca tot ce i se intampla este incredibil, si absolut toate celelalte personaje secundare ofera un plus de farmec romanului, completand cu succes scenariul acestuia. Mi-a placut faptul ca personajele nu respecta nici o schema clasica. Desi reuseste sa lupte singura impotriva lui Sebastian, demonul ce ii ameninta viata, Zoey are momente de slabiciune cand trebuie sa fie salvata.  Riley, reaper-ul de care se indragosteste ii e alaturi doar de la un punct, la inceput el incercand sa nu se amestece in razboiul ei, in ciuda faptului ca ar putea fi de un real ajutor. Andrew, unul dintre putinii oameni care cunosc directia in care a luat-o viata protagonistei ii sta alaturi ca sfatuitor, profesor si prieten in acelasi timp, dar el ramane vulnerabil in fata pericolului. Iar Maurice, adorabilul monstru din dulap, in ciuda puterilor magice pe care pare sa le aiba, nu are posibilitatea sa si le puna in lupta impotriva incubusului pentru a o ajuta pe Zoey.

Romanul este disponibil de ieri in magazinele din afara in format e-book, nu stiu daca va aparea si in editie printata si daca va ajunge vreodata sa fie tradus si in Romania. Totusi, daca obisnuiti sa cititi carti in format electronic, va recomand din suflet sa nu stati pe ganduri  daca vreti o lectura amuzanta, care va va binedispune nu doar cand o veti citi, ci si de fiecare data cand va veti aminti de ea. Daca aveti indoieli, mai jos sunt primele replici pe care i le adreseaza monstrul din dulap eroinei:

<< “You’re up!” he said. “Sit-sit-sit! I made you orange-strawberry muffins. They’ll be ready in a few minutes.” He jerked to his feet and waved me to a chair. “I’ll get you some coffee.” He paused for a long moment, and his smile grew larger as he gazed at me. “Gosh, you grew up pretty, Zoey. Sit-sit-sit.”

…..

 “Zoey, Zoey, my friend, Zoey!”

…..

“So can I stay? Wait, don’t answer that yet. Taste a muffin first. I’m a good cook! I can clean the pool, too. Honest, I won’t get in the way.”

I blinked again. „What?”

“You’re still mad at me, aren’t you. I’m really sorry about that. I didn’t mean to scare you the last time I was here.”

…..

“…and that’s why I came here when she kicked me out. It’s the only place I’ve ever felt safe.”

“What?” I knew I’d missed something crucial. I glanced down at the table in an automatic search for the DVR remote. I needed to rewind and replay that last part.

“You’re not awake yet.” He patted my arm again. “Drink your coffee. We’ll try again when you’re fed.”

…..

“I was only eight, myself, back then,” he said. “I had nowhere to go, and your mom took me in. Oh, Zoey, she was so mad at me that night. I was supposed to stay in the hall closet, but yours had all those great toys. Even then I loved to cook, and your Easy-Bake Oven was perfect for trying out your mom’s recipes in small batches. The lightbulb inside it gave such a warm, even toast to my shortbread.” He reached toward me as if to touch me again, then pulled away, looking down at his hands. “I wasn’t trying to scare you. I thought we were playing a game. Didn’t you see me smiling?”

I nodded, the memory of that grin still giving me chills. “I thought you were going to eat me.”

Maurice wrinkled his fat nose. “That’s disgusting, Zoey. >>

Bile albe:

– Nici nu stiu ce altceva as mai putea scrie aici, intrucat tot romanul a fost o „bila alba”. Nu am nimic de reprosat, mi s-a parut o lectura perfecta si as recomanda cartea oricui. M-a amuzat teribil si chiar daca intre timp m-am apucat deja de o noua carte, inca imi mai vin in minte anumite replici ale personajelor si mi se par la fel de savuroase ca si atunci cand le-am citit prima data.

Bile negre:

– Romanul este incadrat in genul urban fantasy, dar fiind publicat de Carina Press, editura cunoscuta pentru romanele sale cu tenta erotica, banuiesc ca unii cititori ar putea astepta un numar mai mare de scene hot. Acestea nu lipsesc in totalitate, dar nu sunt nici atat de frecvente incat sa transforme romanul intr-unul bine incadrat in literatura romance. Personal, nu am fost absolut deloc deranjata de acest lucru, dar cred ca trebuia mentionat acest aspect, astfel incat sa nu se astepte nimeni la un roman gen Sandra Brown in varianta fantasy.

Update:

OMG! Recenzia mea a ajuns la autoarea cartii Monster in my Closet, R.L. Naquin si se pare ca i-a placut destul de mult incat sa scrie despre aceasta pe blogul ei! Sunt extrem de entuziasmata, acesta a fost unul dintre cele mai grozave momente de care am avut parte de cand am blogul! Gasiti AICI postarea de pe site-ul autoarei.

English version:

I received Monster in my Closet by courtesy of Carina Press publisher and R.L. Naquin, the author of the book. Because English is not my native language, please accept my excuses for the possible mistakes.

I admit I fell in love with the book from the first words. In fact..no, I’m lying! I think that since the moment I saw the book’s title I became desperate to find out the story.  I have a bad habit of creating different expectations around a novel, depending of it’s title and cover and of course, in this case also, once I saw those elements I suspected/hoped that the story would be as original as it seemed to be. And fortunately, I wasn’t wrong. I loved the novel written by R.L. Naquin from the first page till the last one!

I discovered a totally surprising story, full of magic, supernatural and adorable creatures, funny characters, entertaining fragments, sarcastic dialogues or on the contrary, dialogues that were so sweet that I read them over and over again, almost not believing that such a lovely story actually exists. Because, overall, I think a word like “cuddly”, “lovely” or “sweet” would best define Monster in my Closet. Indeed, the story also has a dramatic part, which is actually the novel’s story line, but I was so fascinated by some of the un-human characters that everything else was cast into the shade by them. I have the feeling that no matter what I’d say about the book couldn’t express how much I actually liked it. I think that if my list of unread books wouldn’t be so big, I would start again the novel right away. In fact, during the time I was reading Monster in my Closet I got back at the beginning of the book and read again and again some fragments.  Not because I didn’t understand something or because I forgot something, but because I loved them too much.

The story begins with the morning when Zoey, the protagonist, a 28 years old woman, wedding planner and totally anchored in reality, with no affinity with anything paranormal, realizes that there’s an intruder in her house.  One look at him sends her in her memories, at the moment when she was 5 years old and she’d seen a monster coming out of her closet. And now, in front of her is the exact same monster that she’d forgotten about, thinking that it was only a childish fear.  And the exuberant monster, called Maurice, greets her with coffee, a delicious breakfast and the prayer to be sheltered in her house for a while. From that to a complete crazy life there’s just a tiny step.  Zoey finds out that her gift to empathize completely with the others, to feel all their emotions and feelings is not such a normal thing as she thought and this makes her the perfect target for a demon, an incubus that sees her as a delicious meal. And in the same time, all the women that interacted with Zoey in the recent time are also a target for the demon. And some of them already lost their lives. Zoey must learn how to live among all the supernatural beings that burst into her life, to discover a way to develop her relation with a reaper – a death’s soldier that collects souls and, most important, to get rid of the demon that threatens her life and the lives of all the women around, human or not.

The story was perfectly built, I haven’t noticed a single aspect to seem forced or not in it’s place. The characters are certainly the best part of the book. I think that Maurice became one of my favorites characters from all the books I have ever read. Zoey is extremely credible, although everything that happens to her is incredible. And all the other minor characters raise the book’s enchantment.  I loved the fact that the characters are not created based on a common draft. Although she manages to fight alone with Sebastian, the demon that threatens her life, Zoey has moments full of weakness, when she needs to be saved by others. Riley, the reaper that she falls in love with, stays beside her only later, because at the beginning he tries not to interfere with her fight, even if he would be a huge help. Andrew,  one of the few humans that know the way her life goes now stays with her as a friend, a teacher and an advisor in the same time, but he remains vulnerable in front of the danger.  And Maurice, the lovely closet monster, doesn’t have the possibility to use his magical powers in the fight against the demon, in order to help Zoey.

The novel is available for shopping since yesterday in the most important shops, as an e-book. I don’t know if it’s going to appear in a printed version or if it will ever be translated in Romanian. Still, if you’re usually reading e-books, I totally recommend you this novel. Not only that you’ll have fun reading it, but every time you’ll remember something about it, you’ll have a smile on your face. If you’re still not convinced, please read bellow the first conversation between Zoey and the closet monster:

<< “You’re up!” he said. “Sit-sit-sit! I made you orange-strawberry muffins. They’ll be ready in a few minutes.” He jerked to his feet and waved me to a chair. “I’ll get you some coffee.” He paused for a long moment, and his smile grew larger as he gazed at me. “Gosh, you grew up pretty, Zoey. Sit-sit-sit.”

…..

 “Zoey, Zoey, my friend, Zoey!”

…..

“So can I stay? Wait, don’t answer that yet. Taste a muffin first. I’m a good cook! I can clean the pool, too. Honest, I won’t get in the way.”

I blinked again. „What?”

“You’re still mad at me, aren’t you. I’m really sorry about that. I didn’t mean to scare you the last time I was here.”

…..

“…and that’s why I came here when she kicked me out. It’s the only place I’ve ever felt safe.”

“What?” I knew I’d missed something crucial. I glanced down at the table in an automatic search for the DVR remote. I needed to rewind and replay that last part.

“You’re not awake yet.” He patted my arm again. “Drink your coffee. We’ll try again when you’re fed.”

…..

“I was only eight, myself, back then,” he said. “I had nowhere to go, and your mom took me in. Oh, Zoey, she was so mad at me that night. I was supposed to stay in the hall closet, but yours had all those great toys. Even then I loved to cook, and your Easy-Bake Oven was perfect for trying out your mom’s recipes in small batches. The lightbulb inside it gave such a warm, even toast to my shortbread.” He reached toward me as if to touch me again, then pulled away, looking down at his hands. “I wasn’t trying to scare you. I thought we were playing a game. Didn’t you see me smiling?”

I nodded, the memory of that grin still giving me chills. “I thought you were going to eat me.”

Maurice wrinkled his fat nose. “That’s disgusting, Zoey. >>

Pros:

– I don’t have idea what else I could write here, because the whole novel was a “pro”. I don’t have any complains, I really thought that Monster in the Closet was a perfect reading and I would recommend the book to anybody. I had a lot of fun reading it and even if I already started a new book, I still have moments when I remember some dialogues from Monster in the Closet and I still find them as delicious as they were the first time I read them.

Cons:

– The novel is considered an urban fantasy volume, but because it was published by Carina Press, a publisher known especially for it’s erotic novels, I suppose that some readers might expect a bigger number of hot moments. Which are not totally missing, but are not enough frequent in order to make this novel a romance or erotic one. I was not a bit disturbed by this aspect, but I think I needed to mention this, so that nobody expects some kind of fantasy Sandra Brown book.

Update:

OMG! My review came to the hand of the author of the novel Monster in my Closet, Mrs. R.L. Naquin and it seems that she liked enough to write about it on her own blog! I’m extremely excited, this was one of the best moments I lived since I have this blog! You can read HERE the post on Mrs. Naquin’s site.

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Nici moarta, nici maritata (seria Betsy, Regina Vampirilor, volumul 1) – Maryjanice Davidson

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