GAMEBOARD OF THE GODS
by Richelle Mead
In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims. But Justin is given a second chance when Mae Koskinen comes to bring him back to the Republic of United North America (RUNA). Raised in an aristocratic caste, Mae is now a member of the military’s most elite and terrifying tier, a soldier with enhanced reflexes and skills.
When Justin and Mae are assigned to work together to solve a string of ritualistic murders, they soon realize that their discoveries have exposed them to terrible danger. As their investigation races forward, unknown enemies and powers greater than they can imagine are gathering in the shadows, ready to reclaim the world in which humans are merely game pieces on their board.
Dara: Yay! About time we had this discussion, chicas! :p
Alicia: Some of us have day jobs, ya know.
Kenya: Yes. Alicia works on the streets. The streets are hot now. Corner work is no joke!
Alicia: Not during the day. Business would be too slow.
Alicia: Okay, so let's kick off this discussion.
Dara: I'm ready! (to get it over with) :p
Kenya: Can I say that our book discussions get around 2000 views on the blog? Pretty cool.
Alicia: For July, I picked Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead.
Kenya: I feel like it's due to me.
Alicia: Can I go on? x-(
Kenya: *waits for you all to thank her*
Dara: Yes, continue...
Megan: Of course.
Kenya: So Gameboard of the Gods, or as I like to say it...constipation of the soul.
Alicia: Throughout the month, there was lots of grumbling about the book on Twitter. So the first thing I wanna know is, besides me, who finished it?
Megan: I did...not...
Dara: I quit as soon as I got to 30%. I couldn't take it. AAAAAHHHH!
Alicia: And if you didn't finish it, how far did you get?
Kenya: My doctor said I couldn't finish because it was battering with my insides. 30%.
Alicia: Honestly, I would have quit too, if I hadn't picked the book. Plus, I didn't want us to be on this chat with everyone having quit.
Kenya: Why not?
Alicia: Then we'd just be like an angry mob. Not so great for a discussion.
Kenya: Awww. Richelle Mead suck up.
Megan: I kind of like being an angry mob. With our chain poms.
Dara: I don't DNF very many books and I happen to love Richelle Mead's other series, but...this...ummm... *yawn*
Alicia: I found some good things about the book—kind of. So I will attempt to be the devil's advocate.
Megan: Good luck.
Alicia: I'm gonna need it. So what did you guys think about Mae, the main character?
Alicia: And Justin?
Alicia: Could you be more specific please?
Kenya: Really boring.
Dara: I have no feelings for Mae. I just couldn't...I just couldn't...meh.
Alicia: You ladies do realize that one purpose of these discussions is to inform readers about the book? You're failing at that.
Kenya: She came off cold and one-dimensional. If I was given a quiz about her, I couldn't pass it. What does she like? Does she smile?
Dara: Okay...how about this: I think I fell asleep during the sex scene.
Megan: The first scene at the funeral practically put me to sleep. I just didn't care.
Alicia: Thank you, Megan, for a useful comment!
Kenya: What makes her happy? Sure she can fight, but I can't relate to her at all.
Megan: Lol, I know it's bad when you say my comments are useful.
Alicia: I’m being a cheerleader.
Dara: I just wasn't emotionally invested at all.
Megan: I wish she would have given us a little more background about RUNA and the world.
Kenya: I didn't care if the hero or heroine died. In fact, their deaths would have been an improvement.
Dara: I thought the world building was too much. We get it. Damn...more emotions please.
Kenya: There was no world building, just the placement of insignificant details of futuristic shit!
Megan: I didn't even know what RUNA stood for until I went back and read the blurb.
Kenya: It fucking pissed me off!
Alicia: You know how when it's a home game and your team is getting slaughtered, and it's clear to you why they're getting slaughtered, but it's your job to cheer? This is me. And I have to disagree that there was no world-building
Dara: Ummm...there was tons of world building. Too much. I like to use my own imagination, thank you.
Alicia: But I also think a lot of details about the world that seemed all over the place came together toward the end.
Dara: Well I wouldn't know about the end.
Alicia: Early on, I was thinking: Why do I care about the Cain disease, which has nothing to do with nothing? But it turned out to be relevant.
Kenya: The RUNA is the Republic of North America. I searched it on Goodreads.
Alicia: And all these religious groups, and religions being outlawed, and genetic scores...Why? But it came together.
Kenya: When? At 50% of the damn book?
Alicia: Even though I thought the world-building made sense and was not superfluous, I also thought the presentation of material was not well done.
Megan: I thought the POV of the younger girl was super boring.
Kenya: Dear god, yes.
Megan: I wanted to scratch my eyes out.
Kenya: I mean seriously? WTF, Richelle? WTF?
Alicia: Oh yeah, that chick's POV was totally pointless—that's coming from someone who read the entire book, by the way. It never got better.
Dara: I wanted to quit when the sex scene bored me. I mean...how can a sex scene make me yawn? But it did.
Kenya: Let's discuss what drugs the author was doing at the time of writing it. We all do drugs when we write, right?
Megan: LOL @ Kenya! Yes that sex scene...oh man that was bad.
Alicia: Wait. For a minute there, I forgot I was the cheerleader. Okay..cheerleader's back.
Kenya: I get when you don't want to info-dump the world building, but goodness throw us a bone. And throw the bone in the first 5%.
Alicia: Do you guys know why the sex scene was boring? Why didn't it work for you?
Kenya: Because it had boring characters involved in the sex...
Megan: ‘Cause we are sick fucks?
Dara: I just wasn't emotionally connected to the sexy time she had going on. I'm honestly not even sure why.
Alicia: I'm seeing like a 22% effort from you ladies at providing helpful comments. Can we bring that up to 50% please?
Dara: Hey, hey, I bet our chat is more interesting at 22% than the book.
Kenya: How about you kiss my ass! You assigned this drivel!
Alicia: Yeah...sorry about that. :-/
Kenya: Back to Bukakke and its relation to this book? Anybody?
Alicia: Okay, so I’m ignoring Kenya, and now I am going to say good things...
Kenya: After reading 30%, I felt like someone spurted all over my face! And not just one…many.
Dara: *sigh* Kenya
Megan: I am laughing so hard...my dog thinks I'm nuts.
Alicia: The last 25% or so of the book was actually not bad. It became clear that some gods were struggling for power. Justin got more in touch with his spiritual self. They both interacted with supernatural beings. There was fighting and stuff. So back to you guys: Is there anything at all that you liked about the book? Any redeeming characteristics?
Dara: I liked that I didn't have to read any more after 30%.
Kenya: So can you answer this for me, Alicia? Did you end up being glad you finished?
Alicia: Kenya, if I hadn't picked the book, I would have quit at about 5%. Quitting at 50% would have been the worst-case scenario, because then I would have put in a lot of investment and gotten zero payoff. I did think there were some good scenes toward the end. That being said, did I enjoy the book?...I am the cheerleader...so...I'm gonna pass on that question.
Kenya: Richelle can write, but we all know that. I think she was being more experimental this time, and it just didn't work.
Dara: The concept of the book was good, but my major problem was the snooze fest. The characters just didn't make me want to care about them. I still love Richelle, just not this book.
Kenya: I mean seriously? WTF, Richelle? WTF?
Megan: I can't really think of anything about the book that I liked.
Megan: I didn't get the impression that Justin was a doctor or whatever in the beginning. That just didn't fit how she presented him.
Alicia: He wasn't a doctor. Where did you get doctor from?
Kenya: He was a scientist.
Alicia: No, he wasn't. Wow, people. Wow.
Megan: Yes, but he had a doctorate title is what I mean.
Kenya: Wtf was he?
Dara: He was boring.
Kenya: He talked to people in his head. And he invented shit.
Megan: Lol @ the crows in his head!
Kenya: Oh, they were crows?
Dara: The crows were messengers of the Gods. Or I'm guessing since I didn't finish reading it.
Kenya: I thought they were spirits in his head. The shit isn't clear.
Alicia: You're right, Dara! Gold star,
Dara: Yay! Gold Star! Whoot-whoot!
Alicia: Messengers from just one god, actually.
Dara: See, I didn't need to read it.
Alicia: He's a "servitor." His job was basically make sure religious cults stayed in line, and to take away their licenses to practice as needed.
Kenya: Yeah but before that. He was a doctor.
Megan: I thought he was just nuts.
Alicia: I don’t think he was a doctor.
Kenya: He was so a fucking doctor!
Megan: They called him Dr. Whateverhisnamewas.
Kenya: Thanks, Megan. You tell her!
Alicia: You didn't even read the book. Shush. You know nothing, Kenya Wright.
Kenya: You know nothing, Alicia Snow!
Dara: He wasn't a doctor, guys. Just like, technically, you can call anyone with a PhD a doctor. Smh.
Alicia: Thank you, Dara. He wasn't a medical doctor!
Megan: Right, he had his doctorate though?
Dara: He was an equivalent of a profiler of some sort.
Kenya: That's what I meant.
Megan: Can we start calling me Dr. Megan? I think I am more qualified than Justin.
Kenya: But didn't he invent stuff beforehand?
Dara: Dr. Dara has a nice ring to it. ;)
Alicia: I have a Master's. You may call me Master Alicia. Thanks for your cooperation.
Dara: Call me Domme Dara. ;)
Alicia: I think we're done beating this dead horse. We’re not even interested in the book enough to actually discuss it.
Kenya: Yes. Dear god!
Alicia: Star ratings, people. How much did you hate it? I bet Dara declines to rate, ‘cause she's a pussy.
Dara: I'm back to my "no comment" policy. ;)
Alicia: Told ya so.
Megan: I don't really even want to rate it...but I will give it one star.
Kenya: I give this 1 star.
Dara: Don't care. You can call me whatever. :p
Alicia: Okay, pussy.
Kenya: Smdh. So mature, Alicia.
Alicia: That's Master Alicia
Kenya: Dear god.
Megan: Oh hell.
Kenya: What is your star rating, Alicia?
Alicia: 2 stars :-/
Kenya: Smdh. Why a second star? Such a suck up.
Dara: Wow, after all of that only 2 stars?
Alicia: I know *hangs head* worst cheerleader ever.
Megan: You're off the squad!
Alicia: The squad makes me work too hard anyway. It's tough work cheering for a losing team.
Kenya: Well at least I know you have taste.
Dara: Now we can put this book behind us and forget it ever existed. Except in my nightmares.