Pack by Jeaniene Frost
Thoughts: I was not at all a fan of Jeaniene's Night Huntress series - I know lots of people think it is the best thing since sliced bread, but all I could see when I open the pages was "Buffy Fanfiction" in bright, flashing letters. But I thought perhaps with different characters, I might might learn to enjoy her writing. And I am pleased to say that I did!
(Author of the Night Huntress Series - Goodreads)
Pack isn't exactly fantastic. It's a short story written in as though it were a novel... rather like a mini-novella. That kind of style really does not work when you only have a couple thousand words to get through. And yet, in spite of the style, Jeannie still managed to create interesting 3D characters, a solid universe, and an almost believable were-romance.
Almost believable, you ask? Well, keep in mind this is a short story - a short story that takes place in "real time". So the were-romance does descend into the pits of the "we are mates and you are mine, growl" trope. But when that comes from a rather-sexy werewolf? I don't really mind.
Bottom line? Not bad at all. Worth the 20 minutes it will take you to read it.
How to Date a Superhero by Jean Johnson
(Author of the Sons of Destiny Series - Goodreads)
Thoughts: Wow, this story was terrible. The writing was depressingly amateur, the characters less-than-one dimensional and the plot non-existent. This is most certainly not a case of me disliking a story for its content - because there wasn't really a story for me to dislike. And in a way, that is far far worse.
So, what exactly was the problem? Well, first off, the plot was rather stupid: spandex-wearing superheroes are "out" and are minor celebrities in their own right. There's only so far a girl can suspend her disbelief... certainly not far enough to understand why people would wear spandex if they didn't need to.
Then there was the pacing - or lack thereof. The story starts with a meeting that takes up about half the word count and is - in the end - utterly pointless. It felt like the first chapter of a tedious novel; I honestly would have stopped reading if it hadn't been a short story. And finally, there was the "romance" angle - in which the two characters simply tell each other, "oh dear, I do rather fancy you", and then live happily ever after. What. The. Hell.
Bottom line? Just... don't.
Next week... Kelley Armstrong!