Lila's Lair

My name's Lila. I write rubbish reviews and sing out of tune. I accept offerings of chocolate pudding.

Daughter of Smoke & Bone

Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone) - Laini Taylor

I haven't technically finished the book yet, but, I had the sudden urge to review it, so, the story so far (which if I feel the need to update, I'll add updates as posts as well)...

I know I am one of many who are jaded with the Young Adult genre, in general. So when I came to read this book, knowing it was YA, and also surrounded with hype, I admit that I was rather hesitant. Still, I brought myself to read this book and I'm glad I did. I kind of became enamoured with it. At the same time… there was a bit of a rollercoaster journey of me swaying between thinking 'This is going to be brilliant' and 'Hey, maybe I'll just pop this at my local op shop (thrift store) next time I'm out and someone else can enjoy it where I really can't'.

So it kind of went like this…

Young adult + hype = I'm going to need a few drinks to handle this one

A spirited youth with blue hair and tattoos, creating real life art = Okay, so maybe I could like this protagonist!

Chimaeras = … Mythology, I love you, but chimaeras are certainly a little… outside of my comfort zone (like animal soup! Or animal Frankensteinian creations)

Teeth. Wishes. Other realms. Mysteries = Hmmm, this is working out a lot better than I thought! Gah, judging a book by its genre and hype - silly Lila! I even started to grow fond of those freakish little monsters.

Impending apocalypse = Ugh. Again. How many times can the world end? Really? I mean, seriously?

And then, somewhere between my topsy-turvy opinions on this book… some kind of brilliance (in a dark, emotional, but also beautiful sort of way) seemed to take hold. Making everything kind of work. Making me… well, making me crave more. Somewhere, in all of that spiral of imaginings Taylor has created, mixed with my own feelings and bias'… I fell in love.

It's just...

Neil Gaiman on reviews

I love Neil Gaiman, as a writer and as a person. He always said the right thing, things I would like to hear from another human.


Here is what he said about Anne Rice reaction to reviews as a writer. 




Several people wanted to know my opinion on Anne Rice's recent outburst on (Here's a summary from the Toronto Star.) [Edit, link fixed] (Here's a link to the book for the adventurous. You'll have to go and find Anne Rice's review in among the reviews.) 

I think that unless a reviewer gets their facts completely wrong, the author should shut up (and even then, the author should probably let it go -- although I'm a big fan of a letter that James Branch Cabell wrote to the New York Timespointing out that their review of FIGURES OF EARTH was bollocks*). As Kingsley Amis said, a bad review may spoil your breakfast, but you shouldn't let it spoil your lunch. 

I suspect that most authors don't really want criticism, not even constructive criticism. They want straight-out, unabashed, unashamed, fulsome, informed, naked praise, arriving by the shipload every fifteen minutes or so. Unfortunately an reviews page for one of the author's books is the wrong place to go looking for this. Probably best just not to look. 

(On the other hand, the statement "You read it wrong" is not an entirely meaningless one. When I first read Gene Wolfe's PEACE, aged 17, I thought it was a bucolic and sort of pointless set of reminiscences by a sweet old man. When I read it again, aged 26, having spent some years as a writer and critic, I found myself, rather to my surprise, reading a deeply chilling and murderous novel narrated by one of the darkest characters in literature, who was a ghost to boot. But Gene Wolfe isn't going to make people who didn't like or get PEACE suddenly like it by going on Amazon and telling them it was too good or too clever for them, even if it was.) 

When you publish a book -- when you make art -- people are free to say what they want about it. You can't tell people they liked a book they didn't like, and there is, in the end, no arguing with personal taste. Different people like different things. Best to move on and make good art as best you can, instead of arguing. 

I think Anne Rice going on Amazon and lambasting her critics was undoubtedly a very brave and satisfying thing for her to do, was every bit as sensible as sensible as kicking a tar baby, and, if ever I do something like that, please shoot me."




I like Anne Rice when I was young, dislike her when she got back with the church, and then like her again a bit when she left the church again. I like her attitude toward Christopher Rice, her talented (yes, I read his books too) gay son. 


But I think she is wrong in reacting to reviews. 

I hope she is more like Neil Gaiman. 

Reblogged from XOX

Daniel Radcliffe is the male version of Jennifer Lawrence

Reblogged from Robert Edward

How to Run with a Naked Werewolf

How to Run with a Naked Werewolf  - Molly Harper

I absolutely had a ball with this series.


This particular book was better than the first, almost as good as the second. My only real gripe was that Anna went on, and on, and on, at the start - when really, all I wanted was sexy times. Also, though not a good or bad thing in my views, the Werewolf aspect of this book is considerably downplayed compared to the first two.

However, for the most part, I thought this was a very fun and sexy little read.

Mmmmm, Tina.
Mmmmm, Caleb.


Snowballin' - now with more snow cock

Snowballin': I Fucked Frosty - Auralie Vierge


This was just... bothersome. Seriously, it didn't achieve much beyond annoying the shit out of me!

Now, don't get me wrong, I like snowmen. They're wonderful fun (or so I assume from all I’ve seen on TV – I’ve never been able to create one here in the land down under).

Plus, recent films have proven how brilliant (if not a bit goofy) they can be.

On a more adult note:
Snow, ice, I can see how they can be sexy – the temperature on lovely lady parts (and potentially man parts) is known to be pleasurable! So in a way, the idea of using a snowman wasn’t that bad.


1. I can’t work out if this is a serious erotica or a parody
2. All the characters were absolutely and utterly unlikeable (yes, even our happy, happy snowman)
3. If we’re going to play with snowmen – can they at least not be creepy?
I’m not going to go into the having it off with a snowman in general beyond the fact that it probably taints the nostalgic memories of being a child (or older but young at heart) with their cool, inanimate winter friends. 

Okay, I'll admit, the writing wasn't too bad for a quick little erotic novel, I'll give it that. Even the concept wasn't terrible - I could have found it extremely amusing, whether it was meant to be or not. I wasn't, but I could have!

It’s just those characters. While not impossible, it's rather difficult to enjoy something when you are extremely apathetic towards, and a little irate with, the characters. So here are the three killers; the three things that made this short next to impossible for me to appreciate in any way, shape, or form.

The boyfriend

The female lead / MC
Is a sheer pain in my side for the simple fact that she stays with this boyfriend of hers in the first place. He is rude, obnoxious, and while she considers him her partner - the only thing he is capable of seems to be 'fuck buddy'. Apparently, he's also lacking in that department. This girl really needs to think out her relationships a bit better, dammit.

Mr. Snowman
Animated. Okay. That's a little disturbing… but it could work… except, it doesn't. He just stares and holds her head with his twiggy little arms, letting the girl do all the work. I'd much rather him have been inanimate. There was seriously no good reason beyond creepsville for this funky guy to have a glean in his eyes and a twitch in his phallus, when he wasn't even contributing to the ride. Shudder.

(TL;DR - disturbing, not particularly sexy, with characters that are simply obnoxious)


P.S. She should have just eaten those Oreos first.

67% (The XIIIth hour at Duskland)

What? There was this chemistry going on... then BAM! Now there's this whole other situation... I was casually enjoying this, but now it has certainly gotten my attention.

So put simply, it went from one thing and then tore into another, I wonder if it's going to be like watching tennis?


I'm not taken by the writing style (the author does confess to not being a writer, rather, an artist - how beautiful is that cover design?) but this bit of intrigue has me hooked!

British Library uploads a million archival images for free for anyone to use, remix and repurpose.

Please repost and share the good news!


We have released over a million images onto Flickr Commons for anyone to use, remix and repurpose. These images were taken from the pages of 17th, 18th and 19th century books digitised by Microsoft who then generously gifted the scanned images to us, allowing us to release them back into the Public Domain. The images themselves cover a startling mix of subjects: There are maps, geological diagrams, beautiful illustrations, comical satire, illuminated and decorative letters, colourful illustrations, landscapes, wall-paintings and so much more that even we are not aware of. 


Link to the article 


Link to the images 


"The Coming of Father Christmas" by MANNING, Eliza F. 

Reblogged from AnnaMatsuyama


Jade - Rose Montague

Jade was some serious fun!


That girl has spunk!


I really enjoyed this collection of characters and ideas.That being said, while there were lots of little things that were extremely fantastic, in turn there were others that dampened the water works. So, while I could ramble on forever, instead, I am going to do what I love… and list 'em (you caught me, mostly because I'm tired and lazy. But hey, who doesn't love a list?)!


What I enjoyed:

  • That ending! Complaints from this book aside, I am craving to know what happens next
  • Hellhounds - cute little fluff balls of doom, they're just the bestest
  • A sheer abundance of chocolate, wine, and coffee
  • Giggle moments
  • Fun character interactions
  • Slightly psychic paper (well more of a psychic card)
  • Wonderfully strong female characters
  • And the girl / girl flirtation, which left me swooning
  • Plus an intriguing lead character!

Let downs:

  • I really felt like a bit of everything supernatural was thrown into this without any real rhyme or reason. You name it? Jade's got it!
  • This left it just feeling a bit messy and could have flowed better with some more pages; a bit more background on why the world is the way it is. Some lore. I love me some good lore.
  • On that note, the first half of this book seemed a bit rushed. Again, this could have worked better with more pages!
  • We didn't see a whole lot of character development. Though I do appreciate the Jade brings some surprises to the table, as with all people, there's a lot more to her than first meets the eye!


So yes, there were some rather irksome qualities to Jade.  Nonetheless I did enjoy this read a fair bit and am eager to see where the story goes from here.

The Summons (Shadowlands, #0.5)

The Summons (Shadowlands, #0.5) - Shona Husk

This taster into the world of the Shadowlands series may not have been jaw-droppingly fantastic; however, I really enjoyed this quick introduction to the world. I had been interested in reading the series before now. Now? I’m keenly knocking my currently reading books out of the way to make room for this!

I look forward to… hope for…

Sexy supernaturals

Intriguing alternate dimensions

… and steamy romance!

I hope the following books don’t disappoint. Either way, I’m excited to see how things play out.



Iced - Karen Marie Moning

“Kid, let me tell you something. Most people spend their short time in this world less than half alive. They wander through their days in a haze of responsibility and resentment. Something happens to them not long after they're born. They get conflicted about what they want and start worshiping the wrong gods. Should. Mercy. Equality. Altruism. There's nothing you should do. Do what you want. Mercy isn't Nature's way. She's an equal opportunity killer. We aren't born the same. Some are stronger, faster. Never apologize for it. Altruism is an impossible concept. There's no action you can make that doesn't spring from how you want to feel about yourself.”


Fever? I love Fever so much. It's like crack.

Dani? I want her to either grow up or get her little butt out of the world I adore.


This is difficult to review. Why? Because I'm forever comparing it, not to my normal standards, but to the standards that Moning has made me set through the rest of the Fever series.


The main complaint here seems to be with the (potential) love interests…

Or, shall we say, our dear friend, Mr. Pedobear

And on this count, we have 3 suspects that may really be bears beneath their human glamour…


He is our first encounter and in that encounter is where the sexual potential seems to reach it's peak. That being said, his closeness could easily be merely an intimidation tactic. It's not as if Barron's boys aren't known for such things. Even the biting I get. But on the neck? There is a sexuality to that which I'm not comfortable with - though it isn't really pushing boundaries more than vampires do. In this book I'm comfortable enough with Roydan's connection to Dani and will be content so long as it doesn't escalate.


"She's 14 and I'm attracted to her -- attraction isn't always about sex. Sometimes it's about something far subtler and far bigger."

I liked that line. It sat well with me. But then, good ol' Christian starts to contemplate his relationship with her in relation to her age. That's not suspect at all. Clearly sex is wanted, even if he wants to wait. I figure this is not on a rational level, or a human level. But rather in relation to the sexual nature of Unseelie - of course this is disturbing, but it doesn't ring 'pedobear' as much as it could. Though, really, in terms of immortality - an individual is generally going to outage their mortal romantic interest. Theoretically, most mortal-loving immortals are cougars/manthers in their own right.


Dancer has his own charm and ideally if there were to be a romantic love interest, it should be him (even though he is still too old and I'll admit, the least interesting of the bunch). I don't want that though. He's more like that cute best friend that you'd never imagine more with. All of that being said… Dani better have no love interests that goes beyond interest. I'm allowed to revel in their sexual finesse. She however, needs to stay away from it. We need pedobear repellent ASAP.


The fact is, sexual attraction to those who are underage is not all that uncommon.

Restraint is what counts.

Through all these Dani books, I'm vouching on the side of restraint. If that gets broken… my rating is going to down at sonic speed.




Now, let's get to the meat of this book…

While I can't stand that clan of seers, Dani is the one that really grinds my gears. So, naturally, I was terrified about reading a book from her perspective. Luckily, Moning has toned Dani's voice down enough that I was still able to enjoy it. Even though every mention of dude, sheep, and feck made me cringe internally, I was relieved that they didn't occur as frequently as prior Dani encounters. I felt even more fortunate when I discovered that not all of this book is from her perspective - thank you Karen, thank you!


The plot itself is limited by Dani's age yet still manages to have that dark grit which I love about fever. The storyline was certainly an interesting one, though the staring Fae was a little underwhelming. I much preferred the Lady Gaga Fae in her dazzling meat dress. My hopes are that we'll see more of her! The story also managed to maintain an air of sexiness that didn't go into pedozone, though seriously lacked a sufficient level of Barrons. Still, very sexy.



He is no Barrons.

But fuck. FUCK.

Then there's Christian. He's a bit disturbing now. But fuck. FUCK.

I'm pretty much with Jo on this one.

Their mere presence was enough to make this that much more sassy and enjoyable.


Although... that cliffhanger? That should have happened a lot earlier. Grumble, grumble.

Okay, fine, fine, I'll wind this up.


When not compared to the other Fever books, I did really enjoy Iced. As such, I'm rating it thus. However, with the knowledge of what Moning is capable of this certainly was a little disappointing. I don't blame her for it. It's just the whole concept of leading an adult novel from a youths perspective is essentially skating on thin ice.


“I figure if there is a God, he or she isn’t paying attention to what we build or if we follow some elaborate rules, but copping a ride on our shoulders, watching what we do ever day. Seeing if we took this great big adventure called life and did something interesting with it.”

The Art of Seducing a Naked Werewolf (Naked Werewolf, #2)

The Art of Seducing a Naked Werewolf - Molly Harper

The Art of Seducing a Naked Werewolf surpassed my expectations, and well, I love when a book does that. The first in the series, How to Flirt With a Naked Werewolf, was a bit of fun but had me pet peeving more than I would like. This book? I loved the whole journey.

The love interest in this story is just a honey. He is not your typical alpha/macho/dripping-in-testosterone guy. Not in the slightest. What he is? Rugged, handsome, geeky, huggable, good in bed and the kind of guy I would like beyond the fictional pages. One that cares but isn't too much of a softy. One that likes his sexy times but isn't all about that. He's just fantastic.
Then we have Maggie… oh Maggie… I honestly didn't like her in the first book. She was angsty and while with good reason, she hadn't grown up enough. Now that things have changed for her, this character has really matured. I actually… liked being in her head. Yes, she was snarky. That was half the fun! Mixing that snark with her generally humorous personality, she made this story a good, fun and quick read!

Oh, what about plot line? you ask (or maybe you don't, I'm not a psychic, go away). Well, it wasn't particularly intricate and it was a tad predictable. Yet, that really didn't matter. What made this novel was the romance and the comedy, and it really did make this book. While it may not have had complicated twists and big-gapey surprises, it was still good ol' sexy fun. I loved it. I did. We all need a nice fun read sometimes, do we not?

Page 285 of 387

The Night Circus - Erin Morgenstern

I keep wanting to have strong ranty feelings about this book. Something I can critique or pull apart. I really can't seem to find a thing though. I'm loving this so much. It's just enchanting.



Transmogrify - Richard   Thomas

I really liked this tale. A lot.

At least, when I could follow what was going on.


Note to self: just because it's a short story doesn't mean it's ideal when you're super sleepy.

There were some really cool ideas that came through in this short. Psychic vampirism is a nice change from the abundance of vegan sanguinists that populate every second paranormal book these days. In relation to this, the use of technology was certainly a curious but intriguing addition for these little leeches. That, piled with a sassy main character, and quality writing made me love this short in many ways.

Then, there come the reasons why I couldn't love the whole thing. The narration is painfully disjointed, though this seems to be due to an unreliable narrator of sorts, it is still extremely frustrating. A lot of concepts are also thrown into the mix and aren't really expanded upon. Short stories are wonderful, but if you've got so many ideas in your head, you're better off making it a bit longer so that we can explore these ideas with you. Or at least have a reasonable level of understanding (unless of course my small brain just wasn't capable of grasping it all properly. A fair possibility).

So here I sit. Questions bubbling around in my brain about the hows and whys of what Thomas has incorporated into his world. While I enjoyed what I read, the details seem like they could have been pursued considerably further - and I hope they do in the future.

Yeah... I should probably give this another read when I'm more awake. Oopsie.

Angelfall + World After

Angelfall  - Susan Ee


Okay, I'll admit it, it took me a bit  to really get into this book. Mostly  I think this had to do with funky coloured wings and an overly emotional moment with a kid, a wheelchair, a bastard, and a girl who has the weight of the world on her shoulders. I wrinkled my nose at the smell of 'I'm pulling a quick move to get you emotionally invested in this book'. Compared to what comes next, these minor details, these pet peeves, were nothing. Alas, they made me too sour to give this a full 5 twinkling stars which it most likely deserves. Well, that and the constant referencing of a mental illness as 'crazy' (I get why it was put in those terms, but it struck a bit too close to home for me to be comfortable with).


So there I was, reading, as one does, and thinking that the hype was going to fail me as it is so well known for doing.


How wrong I was.


I quickly went from jaded to enthralled. With it's adorably silly humour, flawed characters that were filled with integrity (even if I wasn't always on their side), fast pace, and a nice bit of romantic tension, I pivoted into this book and didn't want to put it down.


Most of all what I really appreciated about it was that while this is a Young Adult book, it does the genre justice. Angelfall doesn't shy away from the darker side of life and humanity. Nor does it follow a cliché girl meets strange supernatural boy and they fall instantly in love device. Plus, it is very readable for a more mature crowd.


Oh and don't forget Raffe. That man is just the right balance of drop-dead-sexy, strong of will and sweet nature.


Mmmm, Raffe.


Angelfall went places I really hadn't expected and left me craving more. A wonderful read!



I loved World After just as much as Angelfall, if not more. My main complaint with this one was Raffe. Or the lack there of. That made me rather cranky and impatient.

Even so, the plot continues to unfold in a riveting yet disturbing kind of way!


We get some down right laugh-out-loud humour (beware the nuclear cows). A heart-felt reunion that is d'awwwww worthy. Inanimate objects with attitude. Well paced fight scenes and tension.  Plus our dear kick-ass heroine who proves you don't have to be born as a 'chosen one' to achieve great things in this world (or fantasy ones).



DEAD[ish] (DEAD[ish] #1) - Naomi Kramer

WARNING: This review is going to contain bitching. A lot of bitching. While I like to be fairly positive with my reviews, sadly folks, this is not going to be one of them. Sorry!

I was absolutely appalled by this book. I didn't have high expectations to being with, yet they still managed to be pulverized to a paste. Thank the heavens that this was a short and free book.

Never have I seen such a clusterfuck of morally deprived, uncultured and plain eye-roll-worthy characters in once place. They were a giant thorn that made this whole story hard to stomach.
So much irritated me about this book...

  • Swearing overload. Swearing is often seen as 'cool', but come on, some moderation would be nice!
  • 'Gay' men who aren't really gay
  • A ghost girl who pulls a bunch of ridiculously immature pranks on her murderer instead of seeking any kind of justice
  • Choppy cuts between scenes
  • No character depth whatsoever
  • Weak humour, at best (I'm sure it would amuse some peoples tastes but not mine)
  • A killer whose head I'd rather not be in
  • Characters who realize the murder has occurred but don't do anything until they find that others know they know
  • A flimsy plot line. There were no substantial twists or clues to keep the reader guessing

    It's only real saving grace was Trent, who wasn't such an awful character. He wasn't anything special, but hey, you appreciate something remotely worthwhile when surrounded by a whole bunch of filth.

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