Wednesday, October 10, 2018

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Saturday, October 6, 2018

BOOK REVIEW: CARROTS by COLLEEN HELME - SHELBY NICHOLS ADVENTURE # 1 - CONTEMPORARY MYSTERY

By: Colleen Helme
Published By: Colleen Helme
Released: Available Now
Details: Kindle Purchase, 286 Pages

RATING: 3.75 STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

Shelby Nichols is an average woman who is married to the only guy she ever fell for. Her life is organized and predictable, revolving around her husband and two children. All that changes the day she stops at the grocery store for some carrots. As the cashier rings up her purchases, a gunman is busy robbing the bank inside the store. When a customer grabs the robber's mask, he is shot and everyone runs for cover. Everyone except Shelby, who finds herself face to face with the killer. The next thing she knows, she's lying on the floor with a bullet wound to her head. Luckily, the bullet only grazes her scalp, and she doesn't suspect any lasting effects until later when she suddenly 'hears' what people are thinking. With this uncanny ability, her life takes on a whole new dimension. Her kids think she's bossy and too old to understand them, but that's nothing compared to her husband. He says he loves her, but what is it about the redhead at work that he doesn't want her to know? As if that isn't enough, the gunman knows she can identify him, and he's out to silence her forever. In her fight to stay alive, she is saved from certain death by a handsome hit-man with ties to organized crime. This pulls Shelby even deeper into danger, where knowing someone's thoughts can not only hurt her feelings, but get her killed.


BOOK REVIEW:

I bought Carrots in September 2014 and have only just read it and now the Shelby Nichols Adventure is a full-blown series. All the covers are so pretty. I do love them.

Who knew buying carrots could lead to a bullet graze to the head resulting in the ability to read people’s minds?

Shelby is a stay-at-home mum with two teenage children, well, one is twelve. Her husband, Chris, is a lawyer. Shelby pretty quickly gets mixed up in a whole pile of shenanigans which lead her to a confrontation with Ramos, Uncle Joey’s hit-man and standing in front of the mob boss and making a deal with him.

Let all the crazy begin.

The one thing I did enjoy very much was Colleen bringing to life the real-life complications of being married and being able to read your husband’s thoughts. I don’t know how many relationships could withstand that one-sided knowledge and come out the other end, not altogether unscathed, but still in love. That is opening up a whole world of hurt for the person who can read those thoughts, not to mention the invasion of privacy Chris had to deal with. I felt his pain, I really did. But at the same time, he was a bit of a PITA with his ignorance of Kate, the redheaded vixen in the office. I mean...really? Dude you’re supposed to be intelligent. He did redeem himself with me and his love for his wife conquering the hurdles placed in their path. Also, he gets a pass for the invasion of privacy his wife had to learn to deal with and try to control.

Uncle Joey... fear him or love him, he plays his part well. Kate is an excellent biatch. You will loathe her, which equals author's-job-done.

This installment is very silly, possibly a little eye-rolling and a tad predictable, but I will be coming back for more.

Ramos seems a bit of a knock-off of Ranger from Stephanie Plum, but I can live with Ramos if he can show me he’s worth adoring like I adore Ranger. #teamranger

As per the Stephanie Plum series, you will be sure to be getting a car explosion.


I couldn’t rate this first installment any higher because I’m not altogether believing in Shelby’s character as much as I should be from this first installment. She did annoy me a fair bit with her choices and after reading so many Steph Plums, Ramos seemed a little transparent and I do fear a Chris/Joe-Shelby-Ramos/Ranger situation possibly coming over the horizon

But I won’t know until I read more.

Assuming. Much.


BOOK REVIEW: BLACK AS NIGHT by J.C. ANDRIJESKI - QUENTIN BLACK MYSTERY # 2 - PARANORMAL MYSTERY

By: J.C. Andrijeski
Published By: J.C. Andrijeski
Released: Available Now
Details: Kindle Purchase, 294 Pages

RATING: 4.75 QB STARS!

Blurb: Goodreads

Forensic psychologist Miri Fox travels across the globe when her now-employer, psychic detective, Quentin Black, calls from a police station in Bangkok and asks for her help.

She arrives to find Black undercover inside a gang of local criminals, determined to discover which of them is killing street children and ritualistically burning their bodies inside Buddhist shrines. But Black isn't the only one with an interest in the crimes, and soon his investigations get the attention of the local sex traffickers, along with a crime syndicate out of Russia that doesn't appreciate his meddling one bit.

When Miri shows up to help, she manages to catch the attention of all the wrong people. Events quickly spiral out of control...until Miri soon finds herself the hunted.

The second book in the paranormal mystery romance series starring brilliant but dangerous psychic detective, Quentin Black, and his partner in crime, forensic psychologist, Miri Fox.



BOOK REVIEW:

What I so enjoy about this series is Quentin Black. Miriam Fox aka Miri is a great character and they make a great team, but Quentin is gorgeous to read. I will admit I do cringe when he begs for sex from Miriam when he is such an alpha character otherwise, but that is my only complaint. I hoped JC wouldn’t repeat it after book 1...but...

I am gonna say the only reason I am not giving this installment 5 stars, is because of the trigger scene. Not because it is a trigger scene because authors, by all means, go ahead and be brave with your content, but... (cue the dramatic music) I needed more than a shower and a few band-aids with the after-care.

OMG!

This is a very graphic chapter where Miri is put through the most horrific things, for many days, over and over and...I'm not upset it's written so detailed, but I wanted her at least checked over afterward by a professional.

GOOD LAWD!

Holy shit on a pumpkin stick!

QB has people who he trusts and dude must need medical care at some stage of his long life, if not write one in, and make it a  female doctor. 

Seriously, I find this quite lacking and in need of sufficient words to make it better. A sentence that explains whether there are causes for alarm from diseases, pregnancy... damage within the inner girlie department. 

Something!

Don't get me started on what your mental state would be afterward.

As I said, this is a very graphic chapter. It is brutal on Miriam. I can see a lot of readers have dropped stars for this, but I can only bring myself to drop a quarter star because taking that one chapter into consideration, compared to the rest of the story, I won’t dock more.

I just think if you are gonna go detailed and I mean DETAILED, then you gotta whip some more words out, JC. 

Rant over.

We do get told Miriam is an ex-soldier and she has martial arts skills. I would like to see that side of her coming into play more.

Other than that, I am coming back for more as I do adore QB teaming up with Miriam and the sexual tension thrown in among the mystery.

#addicted

Sunday, September 9, 2018

BOOK REVIEW: TWO PRINCES by VICTORIA DANANN - SONS OF SANCTUARY MC # 1 - MC ROMANCE

By: Victoria Danann
Published By: 7th House Publishing
Released: Available Now
Details: Kindle Purchase, 310 Pages

RATING: 3.5 STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

New Biker Romance series from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Victoria Danann. No cliffhangers.

Two brothers, one a player, one a playboy, are on a crash trajectory with destiny and two broken hearts.

BONUS PREQUEL INCLUDED: Intro to the Sons of Sanctuary MC. A Season in Gemini


Brigid was a graduate student at the University of Texas. She had no trouble getting her thesis approved, but finding a Hill Country motorcycle club willing to give her access to their lifestyle was looking impossible. Then she got a lead. A friend of a friend had a cousin with family ties to The Sons of Sanctuary. Perfect. Or was it?

What Brigid wanted was information to prove a proposition. The last thing she had in mind was falling for one of the members of the club. Especially since she was a feminist academic out to prove that motorcycle clubs are organized according to the same structure as primitive tribal society.

Brash was standing in line at the H.E.B. Market when his world tipped on its axis. While waiting his turn to check out, his gaze had wandered to the magazine display and settled on the new issue of “NOW”. The image on the cover, although GQ’d up in an insanely urbane way, was… him. 


After reading the article, Brash threw some stuff in a duffle and left his only home, a room at The Sons of Sanctuary clubhouse, with a vague explanation about needing a couple of days away. He left his truck at the Austin airport and caught a plane for New York, on a mission to find a mysterious guy walking around with his face.



BOOK REVIEW:

This is my second Victoria Danann read, my first being My Familiar Stranger, Knights of Black Swan # 1.

I really enjoyed the bonus prequel story A Season In Gemini. It is a great background introduction.

I did have a little trouble with Two Princes.

Two grown men going to one hell of a lot of trouble to play at essentially ‘The Parent Trap.’ It did feel a little…erm… what is the right word? Immature?

I found it hard to believe an MC guy and a billionaire (twins) wouldn’t just straight up talk to their parents. It felt kinda lost on me the energy they spent setting it all up.

I have to rate this book in the lower range of 3.5 STARS as it just didn’t feel realistic that a billionaire couldn’t just straight up talk to his mother and an MC guy couldn’t just speak to his father about it. Not the way this story was written anyway.

There was no obstacle put in the path of the twins to make them choose the path they took (swapping identities) only to do the big reveal and the parents didn’t have a major reason to not have told two grown men about their brother. There wasn’t like a dirty reason or anything. I think I was looking for some major reason for the whole shenanigans apart from the mother’s father which was kinda lame.

I needed there to be a real purpose to going to the lengths they did rather than just talking it out.

There were other things like Brigid paying $250,000 for something so she could write her thesis. I don't care how much money a student has got, that just seems preposterous to think it's okay to spend that kind of money to get information for a thesis. If it's gonna cost you that kind of money, pick a new idea for your thesis. 

I get what Victoria was doing, but a little OTT.  



BOOK REVIEW: ELIZABETH AND THE CLAN OF DRAGONS by AVA MASON - RH FATED ALPHA # 1 - PARANORMAL ROMANCE

By: Ava Mason
Published By: Ava Mason
Released: Available Now
Details: Kindle purchase, 114 Pages

RATING: 4 STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

A female Wolf in danger. Four Sexy Dragons determined to protect her. A Reverse Harem Paranormal Romance.

Elizabeth is certain she’s not meant to rule the Southeastern White Tooth Pack. Since birth, she’s been told she was the wolf pack’s fated leader. She is, after all, the first-born of the pack Alpha. But how can she lead them if she’s never shifted? She doubts herself, but her fate is tied to the moon and Elizabeth is honor-bound to fulfill her destiny. To help Elizabeth, her mother presents her with a secret diamond necklace, magical jewels that have adorned the neck of every female in her family for hundreds of years.

But evil forces lurk in the shadows.
Not every wolf shifter in the pack wants Elizabeth to take power. When the Wolf Council sanctions Elizabeth as the official Fated Alpha, enemies attack her family, killing her parents. When they discover that Elizabeth survived, she must flee for her life. With nowhere to go, help comes in the form of four sexy and powerful Dragon shifters.

The fierce warriors offer her their protection in their secluded mountain home.
As Elizabeth mends, it’s clear the four Dragon shifters crave more from her. All four men desire her. Each wants to claim her body and heart and soul.
As her enemies close in, can the men keep Elizabeth safe by their side and help her reclaim her place as leader of her pack?




BOOK REVIEW:

This story starts off in one direction, and I actually forgot dragons were going to be involved and then we make an abrupt right angle.

Enter the dragons.

I did like the idea for this story. I do understand it is a shorter read, but within these pages, I would have liked a little more time spent in some areas.

I really liked Aaron’s character, but then…

I ended up pretty much forgetting about the lad in the first part of the story as I'm now in the reverse harem of sexy dragons, which I likey, maybe a little bit too much.

Hunter is a fave.

I did feel like Elizabeth's character was more seventeen than twenty-four, but then there is what felt like a rather large leap in maturity towards the end of this first installment, which I found a little hard to grab hold of.

I think what I am trying to convey is the story felt a little hurried along for me to be able to give five stars.

I will be reading more in this series as I am intrigued and the covers are beautiful.

I will say this was a good start, but for me personally, I would have liked the change in direction to have been a little more curved—not so hurried and more depth to Elizabeth's character and some of the scenes.

I did enjoy this read.


Thursday, September 6, 2018

BOOK REVIEW: BLACK IN WHITE by JC ANDRIJESKI - QUENTIN BLACK MYSTERY # 1 - PARANORMAL MYSTERY

By: JC Andrijeski
Published By: White Sun Press
Released: Available Now
Details: Kindle purchase, 280 Pages

RATING: 4.5 STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

"My name is Black. Quentin Black."

Gifted with an uncanny sense about people, psychologist Miri Fox works as an off and on profiler for the police. So when they think they've finally nailed the "Wedding Killer," she agrees to check him out, using her gift to discover the truth.

But the suspect, Quentin Black, isn't anything like Miri expects. He claims to be hunting the killer too and the longer Miri talks to him, the more determined she becomes to uncover his secrets.

When he confronts her about the nature of her peculiar "insight," Miri gets pulled into Black's bizarre world and embroiled in a game of cat and mouse with a deadly killer--who still might be Black himself. Worse, she finds herself irresistibly drawn to Black, a complication she doesn't need with a best friend who's a homicide cop and a boyfriend in intelligence.

Can Miriam see a way out or is her future covered in Black?

Standalone novel. No cliffhanger.

*Warning: this book contains graphic language, sex, and violence. Mature readers only. Not intended for young readers.*

BLACK IN WHITE is book 1 in the Quentin Black Mystery series - a series set in the Quentin Black World. It is also a spinoff from the Bridge & Sword (Allie's War) series and takes place in the wider history/world of the seers.

Next in the Quentin Black Mystery series: Black As Night, Black On Black, Black Is Back.

THE QUENTIN BLACK WORLD encompasses a number of dark, gritty paranormal mystery arcs with science fiction elements, starring brilliant and mysterious Quentin Black and forensic psychologist Miriam Fox. For fans of realistic paranormal mysteries with romantic elements, the series spans continents and dimensions as Black solves crimes, takes on other races and tries to keep his and Miri's true identities secret to keep them both alive.



BOOK REVIEW:

This is my first JC Andrijeski read and it won’t be my last!

OMG! I SOOO enjoyed Black In White, but just hear me out on a few things little ol' me as the reader/reviewer has to say below.

Miriam Fox aka Miri is a great character. To be truthful I thought—purely from this first installment of the Quentin Black Mystery series—that it should have been titled the Miriam Fox series. Miriam is the focal character, in my opinion, with a delicious helping of QB on the side.

Quentin Black…OMG! I LOVE Quentin. He is such a great character. Well done JC! There was only one time where I was physically shaking my head and pulling a NOOOO face when he did something.

I do love Nick as well. He was a little too determined about one thing and kinda let his professionalism be swept away, but I really like him in Miriam's life.

I’m not going to say much more than that because I reckon you need to dive in and read for yourself.

I am gonna go a little crazy here and still give it 4.5 stars even though I (personally) felt it was too darn easy to pick the baddie. It was a bit of an eye-roll for me when we got to the da…da…da…daaaa... big reveal. This I usually take stars off for and I think quite rightly so as a reviewer. If more suspects were thrown into the plot then it wouldn't be so darn easy.

I also felt at times the author (for me personally) wrote some plot areas too conveniently. What I am trying to convey is certain things happened more in the telling, rather than the showing and it was too convenient the outcome for me as a reader. I would have liked more detail in those areas and it wouldn’t be filler-in, it would possibly enrich the storyline. I do have examples, but I don’t want to point them out as they are my personal issues I have. 

But each to their own. It could be a case of it's me and not you.

I really did love the bones of this story. Actually, I freakin’ loved the bones of this story and at the moment Quentin’s personality has totally washed the negative away for me.

This does not happen at all with me as a reviewer usually.

There are so many more books in this series already written that I can hardly wait to dive back in. The cover designs are gorgeous.

I am still admittedly trying to work out the title meaning: Black In White. I have been pondering it and can't seem to nail the title. 
New edit: I think I just worked it out. 

I understand QB series is a spin-off of the Bridge and Sword series. I happen to have ROOK on my Kindle and the second book Shield is currently FREE (at the time of this posting).

I do recommend meeting Quentin Black and Miriam Fox. QB is a new book boyfriend of mine.


Monday, August 20, 2018

BOOK REVIEW: ONE WILDE NIGHT by JENN STARK - IMMORTAL VEGAS #0.5 - PREQUEL NOVELLA - URBAN FANTASY

By: Jenn Stark
Published By: Elewyn Publishing
Released: Available Now, Currently FREE on Kindle

RATING: 4.5 STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

Tarot-reading artifact hunter Sara Wilde has had her share of tough assignments, but this one just might take the cake. When her newest client hires her to steal a fertility idol from an Amazonian sex-and-death cult, she finds herself south of the equator and shoulder deep in true believers, while Rio de Janeiro gears up for the closing celebrations of Carnival.



BOOK REVIEW:

My first Jenn Stark read and boy did it get off to a fast run.

I adored this novella.

The writing is funny, visually descriptive and such a great idea for an urban fantasy series. There is very much a Charley Davidson vibe with the witty dialogue.

I love that our lead female character is a contract hunter of relics. She has a good heart and puts the money she gets paid to good use. 

Sara uses tarot cards to help her along the way and the mysterious voice talking to her in her head, which is both sexy and intriguing assists in rather amusing ways.

This voice leaves us wondering who he is and why he is helping Sara Wilde get out of her predicaments. Think a conversation without Bluetooth.

We do eventually find out his name and Getting Wilde will give you much more information on this mysterious voice.

As far as this prequel novella, I did feel like I wanted to know a few deeper facts regarding Sara, but it didn’t stop me from really enjoying Jenn Stark’s urban fantasy voice.

I personally thought this was a rather smashing FREEBIE I came across and quite the gem.

The cover design for all the series is simply gorgeous.

I feel some readers have been quite hard on Jenn's novella, but each to their own. If you are looking for a fun read with a guy that will leave you waiting for his big reveal, and you are open to some madcap, fast-paced relic hunting, then try it on for size.
Book 1, Getting Wilde is currently FREE at the time of this posting.


BOOK REVIEW: THE WEDDING FROM HELL PART 2 by JR WARD - THE RECEPTION - NOVELLA PREQUEL TO CONSUMED - PIATKUS - CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE


By: JR WARD
Published By: Piatkus
Released: Available Now
Details: FREE Prequel on Amazon

RATING: 5 STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

The Wedding from Hell, Part 2: The Rehearsal Dinner is the exciting second adventure in J.R. Ward’s three-part ebook serialization: The Wedding From Hell. This exclusive prequel to her upcoming standalone suspense, Consumed (available in October 2018) takes us to where it all started between arson investigator Anne Ashburn and ‘bad boy’ firefighter Danny Maguire. The Wedding From Hell is a sexy standalone novella that sets up Consumed's storyline, leaving fans hungry for more and dying to snatch it up.


The Wedding From Hell, Part 2: The Reception: As the wedding from hell continues, Anne and Danny find themselves walking the delicate balance between professional distance and explosive attraction. Will the desire they feel last through the night and change their lives? Or are they doomed to part after one night of passion?



BOOK REVIEW:

I have to say, my motor is purring in anticipation for Consumed, Firefighters # 1 with these two delicious novellas under my belt.

Danny and Anne are gonna be explosive. Yeah… another pun totally intended.

Not much I can really say other than I highly recommend reading part 1 and 2 in these super short FREE novellas, which will leave you clicking the next page button looking for more… but there isn’t any.

J.R. Ward’s voice is shining through with her descriptions of the crew of the 499 firehouse. I love her Black Dagger Brotherhood series with a passion. I have dabbled in her Bourbon Kings and Fallen Angels series’, but not completed them or even felt the passion I do for BDB.

I can see already I am gonna have a lot of passion for the Firefighters series.

I want Consumed now. I am already consumed by this new series and it hasn’t even started.

October 2018 isn’t that far away… yeah, it kinda is.


BOOK REVIEW: THE WEDDING FROM HELL PART 1 by JR WARD - THE REHEARSAL DINNER - CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE - PIATKUS

By: JR WARD
Published By: Piatkus
Released: FREE and Available Now on Amazon
Details: FREE, Kindle Purchase, 48 Pages

RATING: 5 STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

A brand new ebook-only story from bestselling author J. R. Ward

Are you ready for The Wedding From Hell?

Dear Reader,

It's a classic recipe for disaster: Take one bridesmaid who thinks pink is the root of all evil. Mix with a best man who's hotter than a four-alarm fire. Add in their explosive sexual attraction, a nightmare bridezilla, two catfights, and an emergency call, and you have the wedding from hell! Come to get to know Anne and Danny, the hero and heroine of Consumed, and see their relationship go from friends with innuendo to holy-&*#-did-that-just-happen?! Is this the start of something good for them? Or just an erotic one-night stand that rocks them both but is never to be repeated? Only their hearts know the answer to that, much as their minds might disagree.

Happy Reading,
J.R. Ward


BOOK REVIEW:

This is a deliciously short FREE novella of only about 48 pages which I thoroughly enjoyed.

Anne Ashburn and Danny Maguire are firefighters and have the hots for each other—pun intended—but Anne can’t afford to let her guard down.

Anne works hard to be accepted and to be one of the guys. She has a lot at stake because she still has boobs and not a dick, no matter which way you look at it, she’s all female.

And guys will still be guys.

Robert “Moose” Miller is getting married to a bridezilla, who Danny knows all too well.

Let the bridezilla antics begin.

Let the sexual tension ooze over the pages.


BOOK REVIEW: KISS OF A DRAGON by ALISA WOODS - FALLEN IMMORTALS # 1 - PARANORMAL ROMANCE


By: Alisa Woods
Published By: Sworn Secrets Publishing
Released: Available Now
Details: Kindle purchase, 281 Pages - FREE

RATING: 4 LUCIAN STARS!

Blurb: Goodreads

LUCIAN 

I am a Dragon Prince of the House of Smoke… and I am dying. 
Five hundred years is truly enough for a man like me. A monster. Yet a ten-thousand-year treaty will die with me if I don’t spawn a dragonling to take my place. My two brothers are no use in this task. It falls to me, the eldest by a hair’s breadth, and yet, I cannot face the horror of another sealing. Another death. Another woman’s blood on my hands. 

ARABELLA 
I was saved from death in a dark Seattle alley by an impossibly beautiful man who swooped in on golden wings. Now he’s taken me to his lair, opened my eyes to a world of immortals I didn’t know existed, and given me an impossible task—find him a mate. Then, and only then, will he set me free.

He needs her more than he wants; she wants him more than she should; and the fate of both the mortal and immortal worlds depends on not just repairing their hearts, but finding a Love that’s True… 



BOOK REVIEW:

This was my first Alisa Woods read and I really enjoyed meeting Lucian, Leonidas, and Leksander, the three dragon prince triplets.


He and his brothers, princes of the House of Smoke, existed for literally one purpose—to keep the mortal and immortal worlds apart, as they should be.


Lucian Smoke was the crown prince of the House of Smoke. He was responsible for fulfilling the requirements of the treaty, which included finding a mate ASAP and producing a dragonling heir—or end up wyvern—on top of managing all things in the realms.

Arabella finds herself in a pickle in an alleyway and before long she finds herself in Lucian’s lair, striking a deal with the crown prince.

All truths may not have been disclosed.

Alisa throws in a few villains to spice up the pages and make us want to know more about Zephan the Fae Prince and Tytus, the leader of the House of Drakkon.


Not least the House of Drakkon, an unsavory nest of black dragons that had been plaguing the city and battling with the House of Smoke for years.


I will be coming back for more because I gotta know what happens in this series. The writing was really good, I just would have liked more depth to this first installment in the plot, but I still enjoyed Kiss of the Dragon. I just found some things a little too convenient. I think that is a fair comment to make.