Posts Tagged ‘Twilight Saga’

Paranormal Books and Series: Best to Worst

I like when people make lists of the paranormal books that they’ve read, sorted by loves and hates.  I love the genre so much right now that I’m forever looking for more in the hopes I’ll find some new fandom to obsess over.

The thing is, it isn’t necessarily enough to check out posts of recommendations, because one person’s 5 star favorite might be my idea of empty, meaningless drivel.  That’s why I like the complete list, so I can see which side of the fence my favorites (and least favs) fall on, and thereby whether or not I have compatible taste.

So here’s my list, in case anybody is looking for one.  It’ll be a work in progress that gets edited from time to time.  Books on my first list are my favorites that I consider buy-worthy and rate between 4 and 5 stars on Goodreads.  The second list are books that I still consider entertaining, mostly rated between 3 and 4 stars.   If it falls under Comfort Food, that means the plot is probably fairly predictable or possibly derivative but will pass the time if all else fails.  Obviously with the last category, I’m just trying to get you to save your money for something better—no matter how sexy the cover might be.

Before you begin, you should note that I am essentially a fan of urban fantasy and I generally try to avoid paranormal romance, which I think is just regular romance wearing vampire teeth and a cape.  That kind of stuff generally falls under “Comfort Food” if it makes this list at all.

The BEST:

Adult:

  1. Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter Series, (only 1-9, mind you), by Laurell K. Hamilton
  2. Rachel Morgan, The Hallows Series, by Kim Harrison
  3. Mercy Thompson Series, by Patricia Briggs
  4. Song of Ice and Fire Series, by George R. R. Martin
  5. Otherworld Series, by Kelley Armstrong
  6. Sookie Stackhouse, Southern Vampire Series, by Charlaine Harris
  7. Kitty Norville Series, by Carrie Vaughn (*book 10 just dropped from a 4 star rating to a 3…concerned about possible series decline)
  8. Anna Latham, Alpha and Omega Series, by Patricia Briggs
  9. Eric Courtney, Void City Series, by J. F. Lewis (1st book incredible, think I’m done after the 2nd though)
  10. Odd Thomas Series, by Dean Koontz (don’t be scared off by his other fare, this is a standout series)

Teen:

  1. Katniss Everdeen, Hunger Games Trilogy, by Suzanne Collins
  2. Claire Danvers, Morganville Vampires Series, by Rachel Caine
  3. Clara Gardner, Unearthly Series, by Cynthia Hand
  4. Darkest Powers Series, by Kelley Armstrong
  5. Jenny Thornton, Forbidden Game Trilogy, by L. J. Smith
  6. Elena Gilbert, Vampire Diaries (can only swear for 1-4), by L. J. Smith
  7. Bella Swan, Twilight Saga, by Stephanie Meyer
  8. Shari Cooper, Remember Me Trilogy, by Christopher Pike
  9. Nightworld Series, by L. J. Smith
  10. Kaitlyn Fairchild, Dark Vision Trilogy, by L. J. Smith
  11. Tamsin Greene, Once a Witch and Always a Witch, by Carolyn MacCullough

The Pretty Good:

Adult:

  1. Alex Craft Series, by Kalayna Price
  2. Joanne Baldwin, Weather Warden Series, by Rachel Caine (Gets better with time…)
  3. Merit, Chicagoland Vampires Series, by Chloe Neill
  4. Harper Blaine, Greywalker Series, by Kat Richardson (Liked the first 2 a lot, the 3rd…eh)
  5. Anton Gorodetsky, Watch Series, by Sergei Lukyanenko
  6. Riley Jenson, Guardian Series, by Keri Arthur
  7. Chess Putnam, Downside Ghosts Series, by Stacia Kane
  8. MacKayla Lane, Fever Series, by Karen Marie Moning
  9. Victoria Nelson Series, by Tanya Huff
  10. Meredith Gentry Series, by Laurell K. Hamilton (at least the first bunch)

Teen:

  1. Clary (Clarissa) Fray, Mortal Instruments Trilogy, by Cassandra Clare
  2. Luce (Lucinda) Price, Fallen Series, by Lauren Kate
  3. Rose Hathaway, Vampire Academy Series, by Richelle Mead
  4. Madison Avery Series, by Kim Harrison

The Comfort Food:

Adult:

  1. Sophie Garou, Tales of an Urban Werewolf Series, by Karen MacInerney
  2. October Daye Series, by Seanan McGuire
  3. Dark Hunter Series, Sherrilyn Kenyon
  4. Cat Crawfield, Night Huntress Series, by Jeaniene Frost
  5. Georgina Kincaid Series, by Richelle Mead
  6. Cassandra Palmer Series, by Karen Chance
  7. Joanne Walker, Walker Papers Series, by C. E. Murphy
  8. Joanna Archer, Signs of the Zodiac Series, by Vickie Pettersson
  9. Luna Wilder, Nocturne City Series, by Caitlin Kittredge
  10. Sisters of the Moon, by Yasmine Galenorn
  11. Sabina Kane Series, by Jaye Wells
  12. Atticus O’Sullivan, Iron Druid Series, by Kevin Hearne
  13. Harry Dresden, The Dresden Files Series, by Jim Butcher

Teen:

  1. Liza, Bones of Faerie, by Janni Lee Simner

The Library if You Must:

Adult:

  1. Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter (10 & beyond), by Laurell K. Hamilton
  2. Jaz Parks Series, by Jennifer Rardin
  3. Faythe Sanders, Shifters Series, by Rachel Vincent
  4. Diana Tregarde Series, by Mercedes Lackey
  5. Carpathians Series, by Christine Feehan
  6. Betsy Taylor, Undead Series, by Mary Janice Davidson
  7. Lily Yu, World of the Lupi Series, by Eileen Wilks

Teen:

  1. Nora Grey, Hush, Hush Series, by Becca Fitzpatrick
  2. Wendy Everly, Trylle Trilogy, by Amanda Hocking

Speaking of Jason Dohring…

I’m watching an episode of Moonlight for no real reason at all, except that it came on after Syfy’s 11 pm showing of Being Human (3 eps in and I am loving that show ).  It’s late, though; I have to be up in about 6 hours  but I bet my brain won’t let me sleep anyway, which gives lying prone in the dark little appeal.

So here I am watching this show and feeling a little guilty for making fun of it so mercilessly when it first came out.  I know I wanted to be a fan; vampires and Jason Dohring—no, better, Jason Dohring AS a vampire—I expected to be peeing myself  with excitement every time it came on.   Instead I think I tried two episodes and gave up. And I made fun of it a lot.

I’ll be blunt.  I didn’t like the stories, I didn’t like the main character or give a crap about his point of view, and I didn’t think Josef got enough screen time for me to keep watching just to enjoy Dohring’s wry delivery.  Sophia Myles didn’t enter into the equation, since I wasn’t a Doctor Who fan until 2008.  Now that I know who she is, fantastic American accent.  🙂

Josef: Vampire experts. Beautiful – now we have the food mouthing off about the farmer.

Not a bad line. I’m wondering if I was just a little less open-minded about vampire fiction at the time, it being pre-Twilight saga and Being Human (enter vamps that can day-walk with only a little squinting or sparkling).

Ha-ha, Sophia just said ‘phone’ with an English accent.

Oh, well.  Moonlight is long gone and I don’t feel like chasing it just to find out once and for all if it was worth more than a two-ep attempt.  I’ll just keep hoping that Dohring picks up another chance somewhere else.  Until then, we’ll always have Logan Echolls.  😉


Quick Note for Brooding Monsters with Tortured Pasts

So I just finishing up watching New Moon.  I love the series, even though I don’t love everything about it.  The ending is pretty great.

Anyway, it made me think about the books I read, the movies I watch based on those books or not, and TV shows, too, and I just wanted to say that if someone wants to play a hero with a dark side who falls in love with someone despite himself, I know where he should get his notes from.

Christopher Eccleston as Doctor Who, Series 1.

I’m sorry, but I don’t think anybody else does it as well. Wait, I have a second person in mind, but I’ll try to stick where I am for a minute.  I know if you’re a Ten fan, you’re probably thinking I’m nuts to leave him out, but I’ll always feel like Ten had gotten his act together to the point where he knew being in love with Rose wasn’t really the greatest idea, so he sort of held himself in check and went about his business as much as he could.  Therefore, if he really was in love with Rose, it was way too subtle.  It almost seemed like he showed his feelings more when she wasn’t around to witness them.

Now look back to Series 1.  There was a Doctor who wasn’t about to feel something for a human.  Captain Tortured Past, coming right out of the Time War, lost his entire species, completely bitter…he invited Rose along because she persisted and finally  impressed him, plus he was seriously lonely.  But I don’t think he intended to feel anything for her at all.  It just sort of…happened.  Anyway I just liked his emotional intensity and brutal honesty towards her, and the way you could tell that she became precious to him, though he never did anything about it.  I don’t think I’m wording this right, but it isn’t like I planned this.  Just a thought.

Second example has to be Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls in Veronica Mars.

From what I read, they never even meant for him to be a main character, and then he took over the freakin’ series.  Tortured past?  Abusive father, neglectful mother, getting dumped by his girlfriend who then turned up murdered…you don’t always need paranormal circumstances to fit the bill.  His was a different version, starting the series with the intention of hating and torturing the heroine, only to unexpectedly develop powerful feelings of the exact opposite kind.

These are the two best examples that I can think of, and right now I feel like everybody else falls flat.  Yeah, this means you, Edward.