The Captain’s Log – a Muster of Mini-Reviews of the Remaining 2021 Books!

Ahoy there me mateys!  I have read more books this year then there are days left to review them individually.  So today I bring ye a muster of mini-reviews.  What be a muster?

Well the Oxford English Dictionary defines it as:

  1. assemble (troops) especially for inspection or for battle;
  2. collect or assemble (a number or amount); or
  3. a group of peacocks.

Here I take a look at the last 9 books.  They don’t get full reviews because I be running out of time.  But me rule is that I have to review every book I read.  Arrrr!

Side note: click on the book titles to add the books to yer Goodreads’ Ports for Plunder List.  

edge of dark (Brenda Cooper)

Oops!  This was the 11th book of the year and I thought I had reviewed it.  It was a solid read and the first part of the duology.  There are two main characters.  One is Charlie, a ranger on an ecologically preserved planet.  The other is Nona, who grew up on a space station. There is a light romance subplot that I didn’t mind.  There are also AI who were banished from society but thrived instead of dying out.  They are back in “civilized” space.  The conflict is interesting as are the characters and how the AI are described.  I will be reading the second half.

“They live inside of what is essentially one huge wearable. Everyone connected to everyone even when they shit.”
― Brenda Cooper, Edge of Dark

blackdog (K.V. Johansen)

I had accidentally read book two in the Gods of the Caravan Road series first.  I really enjoyed that book which dealt with an undying assassin.  So I read book one with the intent of seeing if I wanted to read more of the series.  I ended up not liking this book nearly as much.  I did love the guardian Blackdog who is a shape-changing spirit.  I did love the idea of the goddess incarnated into the body of a human. I have no regrets about reading this but don’t feel like I will pick up more of the series at this point.

the spirit thief (Rachel Aaron)

This was an enjoyable popcorn read that dealt with a thief.  I am a sucker for those stories.  However the thief was the least enjoyable character.  I liked Josef the swordsman and Nico the demonseed much better.  I did enjoy the magic system.  There is a ghosthound.  But really the major problem is that the story details faded too quickly and led to me not wanting to read more of this series.  No regrets though.  I did love this author’s series Night Shift Dragons.  I will read other things by her.  Arrrr!

“Lady,” the Master of Security said, shaking his head, “if you’re here to warn the king about Eli, then you’re a little late.”
Miranda scowled. “You mean he’s already stolen the artifact?”
“No.” The Master of Security sighed. “He’s stolen the king.”
― Rachel Aaron, The Spirit Thief

the book of lost things (Cynthia Voigt)

I picked up the audiobook of this on a whim because I hadn’t read anything by the author in ages.  This is a fun book that I would have adored when I was little.  The main character, Max, solves problems using disguises.  His parents are missing and the 12 year old starts growing up in a hurry.  The plot was fun but a little too unbelievable for me older self though it has excellent characters.  I won’t read the rest of the series though.

“The air in the library rooms was silent, full of ideas, the thinking of the writers of books, the thinking of the readers of books.”
― Cynthia Voigt, Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things

the perfectionists (Simon Winchester)

I listened to this one on audiobook read by the author.  This is a nonfiction title about precision engineering and was a fascinating five star read.  This book discusses things like locks, rigging, watches and how the way to measure changed too.  All areas were full of fun facts and the author’s enthusiasm for the subjects was delightful.  I need to read more of his work for sure.  Arrr!

“They are clean to the far more brutally restrictive demands of ISO number 1, which permits only 10 particles of just one-tenth of a micron per cubic meter, and no particles of any size larger than that. A human being existing in a normal environment swims in a miasma of air and vapor that is five million times less clean.”
― Simon Winchester, The Perfectionists: How Precision Engineers Created the Modern World

where the crawdads sing (Delia Owens)

This historical fiction was beautifully written.  The sections that dealt with the murder and trial in 1969 could have been left out.  I wasn’t too keen on some of romance aspects either.  But the descriptions of the “Marsh Girl’s” childhood and life in the marsh of North Carolina was mesmerizing.  Listening to the audiobook seemed to enhance the naturalistic elements of the story for me.  The descriptions were evocative and beautiful.  While not all elements were to me taste, I thought this was a good book and get the hype overall.

catalyst (Sarah Beth Durst)

This was a random audiobook pick based on the author and the fact that there was a giant cat on the cover.  A cat that won’t stop growing.  This book was silly and nonsensical.  I couldn’t get over the silliness.  I did not really like the plot much but I did love the two best friends’ relationship in this one.  And the mouse.  The mouse rocked.  Not sad that I read it but I do like many of the author’s other books better.  This felt too young for me even though I read other books in this age range all the time.

the last watch (J.S. Dewes)

This sci-fi was action packed and so much fun.  It deserves a longer review really.  Check out Matey Mogsy’s review cause it be better then this short endorsement.  I will be reading the next in the series.

the thirteenth cat (Mary Downing Hahn

A random pick.  This author wrote one of me favorite ghost stories when I was little and I have never read anything else by her.  And of course cats.  This was a very odd book with witches and magic. This was just okay.  The plot was all bit scattered, the pace a bit slow, and the ending was rather lame.  I would have liked the main characters to have more agency.  Plus the friendship in this was mean.  I will stick to remembering the fondness for her other book.

So there ye have it.  All 2021 books reviewed.  Onto the 2022s! Arrrr!

5 thoughts on “The Captain’s Log – a Muster of Mini-Reviews of the Remaining 2021 Books!

  1. Wow, great job on reviewing all your 2021 reads! I am nowhere near that level of reviewing.

    I got The Spirit Thief this year for Christmas, so I hope to be reading it soon. I love the author’s DFZ series too, so I’m curious to see how a series she wrote that’s set in a different universe plays out.

    Liked by 1 person

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