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Look at that cover. Isn’t that an awesome cover? And it’s a sentient gargoyle who cooks delicious vegan food! I love Gigi Pandian’s Dr. Jaya Jones series, so this new series, centered on an alchemist and herbalist, should really be a no-brainer for me. But I can’t do it. I give up. After two weeks of putting this aside to read everything else available, from a ridiculous book about getting rid of clutter to the backs of cereal boxes, I’m letting this one go. At halfway through, I should care about at least one of the characters, and I should care how the story ends, and it’s extremely rare for me to put aside a book without finishing, but I just can’t keep going anymore. I don’t care who killed the guy. I don’t care what Zoe decides to do with her life.

Zoe Faust is a former alchemist who moves to Portland to start a new life. But when she unpacks the crates she had shipped from Paris, she finds a gargoyle. Who talks. And is an excellent cook. He needs her help deciphering an ancient scroll. Okay, I’m intrigued. Then a teenager breaks into her house, a dead body turns up on her doorstep, and she’s a suspect because although she’s over three hundred years old, she’s stupid enough to tell the police that she “smelled poison,” which is part of the “herbal sensitivity” we hear about CONSTANTLY. She also constantly makes smoothies and reflects on how attuned she is to the sun. Really, it’s a wonder I made it halfway into this book. It’s excruciating.

And that’s it! I feel so free now that I’ve stopped trying to read this!

Source disclosure: I received an e-galley of this title courtesy of the publisher.

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