Game Trailer: Red Dead Redemption 2

Red Dead Redemption II

Mark you calendars: on October 26, 2018, Red Dead Redemption 2 is coming, baby!

Wait… what? You’ve NEVER posted anything about video games on TGB. What the hell is this?

If you’ve ever taken the time to read my About Me page, you might recall that I briefly mention my love for video games. While it’s still (sadly) true that I’ve barely played anything—with the exception of Sims 2 and Sims 3 on PC—I still try to keep up on news about certain game titles/franchises I’m excited about. This is a game I’ve been waiting on FOREVER, and barring any delays (please, God, no delays!) I’ll finally get to check it out this fall, and I’m SO EXCITED!

Check out the latest trailer below:

What do you think? Does this look like a game you’d like to play?

 

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Watch Me by Jody Gerhman #Review @StMartinsPress

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Kate Youngblood, a creative writing professor, is fast-approaching forty and feeling invisible. Men don’t notice her anymore, they don’t see her—except for her student, Sam Grist. His eyes are on her constantly, and Kate enjoys it. What she doesn’t know is that Sam watches her all the time… even when she doesn’t know it. Sam has had their future together all planned out for years, and he won’t allow anything—or anyone—to stand in his way. Kate belonged to him… she just didn’t know it yet.

What I Liked

The story is told in the alternating points-of-view of both Kate and Sam, and I was delighted to see the book was structured in this way. I love being able to get inside the heads of both main characters, seeing how each one perceives events that take place. It’s chilling to see how oblivious the intended victim is to the manipulations of the villain, especially when you know what’s being planned. (The downside to this is it has the power to create some serious anxiety in the reader when the oblivious party is in immediate danger, and doesn’t know it!)

Sam Grist takes the prize for being the creepiest stalker I’ve ever read about. It was truly disturbing to see the way he processed things; the only thing more disturbing was how bold he became in stalking Kate and how far he was willing to go in order to make his fantasies become reality.

What I Didn’t Like

As the book neared the end, the things that were happening had me completely engrossed, thinking an outstanding ending was on the way. I was breathless, reading as fast as I could, racing toward the fantastic finale I just knew was coming.

Then I read the last two chapters.

Instead of cheering and feeling exhilarated, I was left bitterly disappointed and wondering why on earth it ended the way it did. I can’t explain why I felt that way, of course, because it would be a major spoiler. I haven’t read anyone else’s review on this book yet, so I may well be alone in feeling let down by the ending. It works, I suppose… but it wasn’t at all what I expected. Or wanted, for that matter.

Final Thoughts

There are many things about this book that I thought were excellent. As I mentioned earlier, Sam Grist is the creepiest stalker I ever read, and I’m sure I won’t forget about Sam or Kate anytime soon (if ever). I thought Gehrman’s writing was very good, and I enjoyed reading most of this book. But that ending… it’s hard for me to get past that. It didn’t appeal to me in the slightest, and—even if it feels a bit unfair, given how much I enjoyed so much of the book—it soured how I felt about the story, overall.

It was a struggle to rate this one. 4 stars felt too generous, given how I felt about the ending. 3 stars, or even 3.5 stars, felt too little, because there was so much I did like about it. I decided to go with 3.75 stars, in the end.

Despite being disappointed with the ending, I’m definitely willing to give this author another try, because I really like her writing style.

As for recommendations on reading it? I leave that to you, readers. If the premise appeals, give it a try. Who knows? You might love the ending, and wonder why on earth I didn’t love it!

I received an advance reading copy of this book courtesy of St. Martin’s Griffin via Netgalley.

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Author: Jody Gehrman
Title: Watch Me
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Published: January 23, 2018 by St. Martin’s Griffin
Rating: 3.75 stars rounded up to 4 stars

About the Book

For fans of You by Caroline Kepnes and Her by Harriet Lane comes a riveting novel of psychological suspense about how far obsession can go.
Kate Youngblood is disappearing. Muddling through her late 30s as a creative writing professor at Blackwood college, she’s dangerously close to never being noticed again. The follow-up novel to her successful debut tanked. Her husband left her for a woman ten years younger. She’s always been bright, beautiful, independent and a little wild, but now her glow is starting to vanish. She’s heading into an age where her eyes are less blue, her charm worn out, and soon no one will ever truly look at her, want to know her, again.
Except one.
Sam Grist is Kate’s most promising student. An unflinching writer with razor-sharp clarity who gravitates towards dark themes and twisted plots, his raw talent is something Kate wants to nurture into literary success. But he’s not there solely to be the best writer. He’s been watching her. Wanting her. Working his way to her for years.
As Sam slowly makes his way into Kate’s life, they enter a deadly web of dangerous lies and forbidden desire. But how far will his fixation go? And how far will she allow it?
A gripping novel exploring intense obsession and illicit attraction, Jody Gehrman introduces a world where what you desire most may be the most dangerous thing of all.

Jane Seymour, The Haunted Queen by Alison Weir #Review @alisonweirbooks @randomhouse

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This next book in the Six Tudor Queens series tells the story of Jane Seymour, third wife of King Henry VIII. This fictionalized tale of Jane’s life begins at her childhood home of Wulfhall and, in time, we see how Jane came to serve as a maid-of-honor for the Queen—Katherine of Aragon, Henry’s first wife. When she arrives, the King’s pursuit of Anne Boleyn, another of Katherine’s maid’s-of-honor, is already well underway. Jane remains fiercely loyal to her beloved Queen Katherine, even after she is forced to leave her and serve Anne, instead. When Anne is unable to provide a son for the King, he sets his sights on Jane, and marries her eleven days after Anne’s beheading. Jane was able to give Henry the son he so greatly desired, but died shortly thereafter.

I still haven’t read the first book in this series, but I enjoyed the second very much. I was excited to read about Seymour, hoping it would be as enjoyable as the book about  Boleyn.

Jane Seymour, The Haunted Queen swept me back into the Tudor era and kept me enthralled the entire time. The fanciful element of Jane being haunted was a nice addition to the story; it was never over the top, and didn’t detract anything from the main story. It was presented in such a way as to be believable that would Jane might feel haunted, and I enjoyed reading those portions.

The real Jane Seymour left behind no letters, so little is known about her thoughts on events that took place during her time at Court and, later, as Queen. Despite that, Weir has written a wonderful novel that makes fine use of the facts known about Jane, her family, and the time she spent with Henry.

Filled with rich imagery and careful attention to detail, Tudor fans are sure to love reading about Henry VIII’s third bride… I certainly did!

I received an advance reading copy of this book courtesy of Ballantine Books via Netgalley.

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Author: Alison Weir
Title: Jane Seymour, The Haunted Queen
Series: Six Tudor Queens #3
Genre: Historical Fiction
Expected Publication: May 15th, 2018 by Ballantine Books
Rating: 5 stars

About the Book

A novel of the devout young woman who became the unwilling object of King Henry VIII’s ardor–and the mother of his only son. In this third book in the epic Six Tudor Queens series, the acclaimed historian and bestselling author brings new insight to this dramatic story, showing how pure fear for her life determined Jane Seymour’s actions.
25-year-old Jane Seymour wants nothing more than to become a nun. But her ambitious father has forced her to live at court as lady-in-waiting to Queen Katherine of Aragon, a fellow-Catholic whom she soon comes to love and admire. So Jane is appalled when King Henry shunts Katherine aside in his lustful pursuit of Anne Boleyn, but even more so when he takes Anne’s life in his rush to wed–Jane herself!
Unwilling to marry but terrified to resist Henry’s advances for fear she might share Anne’s fate, and propelled by her family, Jane becomes Queen of England a mere ten days after Anne’s execution. She knows she must produce a male heir without fail. Her very life depends on it.