Time for another round of Yvo’s Shorties! This time around a contemporary romance story and a nordic noir sequel that sadly both failed to live up to expectations for me.
“For the first time in my life I get it: home isn’t always a space; it can be a person.”
After highly enjoying their recent contemporary romance titles, I had high hopes Twice In A Blue Moon would be another winner for me… But in the end I can’t say that I was all that impressed by this title. As a whole, I did like the idea behind the plot with the second chance meeting, the Hollywood angle and the movie itself. The writing itself does read fast and seems the same as in the other books I’ve tried… BUT. Somehow I was never able to fully connect to the story itself. It might have been that the chapters set in the past were simply too long and the ones in the present felt a bit rushed, it might have been due to the fact that I wasn’t a fan of the main characters Tate and Sam at all and didn’t think their dynamics were realistic. In any case, somehow this story didn’t end up convincing me at all, and the whole love triangle vibe, the insta-love element in the flashbacks and the sexy scenes in the present didn’t really help either. A lot of the characters weren’t all that likeable in general, and I think I would have liked to see more of the secondary characters (Nick, Charlie, Trey for example) as they at least came over as more genuine. As a whole Twice In A Blue Moon definitely wasn’t as good as their other titles I’ve had the chance to try before; a true shame, but it is what it is I guess.
Title: The Island
(Hidden Iceland #2)
Author: Ragnar Jonasson
Translator: Victoria Cribb
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Crime
First published: October 28th 2016
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Finished reading: February 15th 2021
(Originally written in Icelandic: ‘Drungi’)
“The bonds of silence were breaking; all she needed to do was dig a little deeper.”
I’ve enjoyed Ragnar Jonasson’s writing in the past, and I was really curious to see how this trilogy would continue after that explosive ending… Those who’ve read The Darkness will know what I’m talking about; how to continue a series after ending the first book in that way?! The answer is with flashbacks and showing Hulda’s past, and while it’s an ingenious tactic, I’m not sure if it actually worked all that well for me. Knowing how things end for Hulda’s character made me so much less invested in what happened to her before… I still like that we have an older main character in focus, but as a whole she fell a bit flat for me. The considerably slow pace and constant character hopping with the different POVs didn’t really help either… The investigation itself might be interesting, but the story itself was very much slow going. The story is divided into two parts: one set in 1987 and the other set in 1997. It’s true we get to see both events more closely this way, but I still think that the different POVs only distracted instead of adding more dept. The main reason I did keep reading is because I still enjoyed his writing style and the many descriptions really made the Icelandic setting come alive for me. I do hope the final book of this trilogy, The Mist, will be more interesting! I’m curious to see how he will wrap up this series.