These ‘about me’ sections, or even sections that inform you about blogs, have never been my forte. Much to my chagrin, I was never taught the unwritten rules of what you are supposed to say. The links at the side of the blog – Twitter and Goodreads, for example – are liable to tell you more than I could ever say in words.

Mostly, this will be a book blog. I read a lot, and I love to share my views on my most recent reads. I try to read a little bit of everything, but if you look closely you’ll notice I will occasionally become obsessed with one specific genre for a short period of time. Old books, new books, yet to be released books – I read them all. If you’re an author looking for advance readers or just wish for more reviews of a book you’ve already released, please feel free to contact me. There is a contact form at the side of my blog – if you scroll down below the Twitter and Goodreads sidebar you will find it – so drop me a message and I’ll be sure to get back to you in double time. After all, finding new authors is what makes the book world go around.

Thanks for taking your time to read this. With a little bit of luck, you will find my blog much more interesting than this mundane introductory section.

Saturday, 30 December 2017

Review: The Accident

The Accident The Accident by Linwood Barclay
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My first Linwood Barclay read, A Tap on the Window, earned a solid five-star rating, and I was eager to pick up more of his work. I worked my way through a few of his books, all earning four-star ratings from me, before reaching a book that left me a bit tentative. Everyone knows that feeling of giving a beloved author a three-star rating, how it can leave you worried about what else they can offer. Due to this, I found myself avoiding the other Linwood Barclay books I own. In the end, though, I finally decided to overcome my fear and jumped into The Accident.

I’ll be honest, The Accident is not a full four-star rating. It is a very strong three-point-five-star read, possibly even more than that and leaning even closer to four-stars, hence why I decided to round my rating up. In truth, I feared I would not be doing such a thing at the start of the story, but it did win me over in the end.

Linwood Barclay writes thrillers that are quite a bit slower than many of the big-name thriller writers out there. What is lacking in speedy action scenes, however, is made up for in twists. Once the story gets going, many elements are introduced in this one. Each time you believe all the details have come to light, something more is added to leave you guessing the future details that will come to light. It’s certainly one of those books where you need to hold out, to work through may details, to really appreciate how everything comes together so well.

Whilst The Accident may not be my favourite Linwood Barclay book, it has certainly removed the tentatively that was left following my prior three-star rating.

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Review: My Enemy, My Earl

My Enemy, My Earl My Enemy, My Earl by Tammy Andresen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Last year I worked my way through Tammy Andresen’s Taming the Heart series. I enjoyed each of the stories, finding myself wanting more after each one. When the chance came about to start Tammy Andresen’s new series, A Laird To Love, I found myself more than willing to dive in.

Christmastime With My Captain provided an extremely short story that introduced me to the A Laird To Love series, and desperately left me wanting more. It was short, but it provided all I love about a Tammy Andresen novel. Whilst I really enjoyed Christmastime With My Captain, it is merely a blip on the radar considering how much I enjoyed My Enemy, My Earl.

My Enemy, My Earl is the first book in the A Laird To Love series, and it will quickly leave you wanting more. It is a quick read, one that can be completed in a single sitting, but as always Tammy Andresen provides more than enough to keep you gripped throughout. It is a short story, but plenty occurs within the pages to ensure you are addicted from the start until the end.

There is plenty of drama. There is plenty of romance. There is plenty of emotion. The story is moving from the very first page, with each new page adding something more. It is a wonderful start to the series – not only does it provide a brilliant love story between the two characters, it also introduces us to the other characters whose stories we will get to read in the rest of the series. In fact, many of the events and details throughout this story have left me super excited to see how the stories will play out for the other characters.

The one thing that I wasn’t completely blown away by, though, is something most people will be able to overlook. Living in Scotland, I often find it difficult to compute the accent I hear daily with the way most write it down in books. I’ve only ever found a single author where I found things matched up completely, and that is Stuart MacBride. He writes crime fiction set in my part of Scotland in the modern day – basically, he writes where he lives and in his time. It could be nothing more than the stereotypes of historical fiction set in Scotland, but I find I never actually read the words with the Scottish burr. As I said, however, this is something personal.

Overall, I had a lot of fun with My Enemy, My Earl. It was a wonderful introduction to the series and I cannot wait to grab book two when it comes out – there is no doubt of this being another Tammy Andresen series I’ll be following.

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Review: A Different Kind of Lovely

A Different Kind of Lovely A Different Kind of Lovely by Petra March
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A Different Kind of Lovely is a standalone spinoff novel of Petra March’s A Touch of Cinnamon. In truth, I was a little bit tentative for this very reason. Despite being a standalone novel, I feared I would not understand all the details without reading Petra March’s other books. However, my fear was unfounded – there is no doubt this spinoff book does work perfectly fine as a standalone novel. I am now interested in reading A Touch of Cinnamon, however, as there were characters appear in this book whose story I would like to know more about. Thus, whilst it is perfectly fine to read this as a standalone novel, it will leave you with the desire to read Petra March’s other work.

In truth, my rating of A Different Kind of Lovely is more of a three-point-five-star rating rather than the three-star rating I gave it. I had a bit of a debate as to whether I would round my rating up or down, but in the end I opted to round it down. I know many consider a three-star rating to be a negative rating, but I believe such is not the case. Three-star ratings still reflects enjoyment and a desire to read more, and such was the case with this one – I certainly enjoyed it, and I am interested in picking up Petra March’s other work.

A Different Kind of Lovely is a novel that fills you mind with wonderful images. It is beautifully descriptive, bringing to life the details of every single page. The people, the settings, the events – all of it is brought to life through the wonderful use of words. Whilst I find it easy to imagine any book in my mind, few have ever been quite as vividly detailed as A Different Kind of Lovely. The way Petra March uses her words creates truly detailed scenes in the mind. Moreover, these images occur without an overuse of words – it’s amazing how easily Petra March brings images to life.

These wonderful images accompany a story filled with tragedy. Although this is a romance novel, there is a lot of negative emotion to wade through. Not that it is a chore, merely that it is not the kind of love story where every moment is filled with joy. As with real life, A Different Kind of Lovely shows how the good and bad often go hand in hand – you can fall in love and live life, even with a darkness surrounding the heart.

This is where my rounding down rating comes from. Whilst the images were vivid and the story realistic, I found I didn’t connect with the characters in quite the way I had hoped. When a story has such a heart-breaking storyline, I prefer it if I feel as though I am in the character’s shoes. I want to experience the pain, each and every word should crack at my heart. With A Different Kind of Lovely, I felt like I was an outsider looking in. I could see their pain, I could understand it, but I did not experience it alongside the characters. This is what had me rounding down my rating – although finding the story enjoyable, I wasn’t as connected with the characters as I had hoped I would be. Towards the end I certainly felt that connection starting to build, but it was not quite enough for me to have rounded my rating up.

Overall, however, A Different Kind of Lovely is a beautiful story. It is a tragic romance many will enjoy, one that will leave you wanting more of Petra March’s wonderful words.

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Thursday, 28 December 2017

Review: Moon Bound

Moon Bound Moon Bound by Donna Grant
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Donna Grant is one of those authors I constantly tell myself to pick up. I often see her books when looking for something new to pick up, be it through a Goodreads recommendation or through the Amazon ‘books you might like’ feature. Thus, when the chance to read Moon Bound came about, I jumped in.

Although this is the fourth book in the LaRue series, it is my first Donna Grant book. While the story did stand by itself quite well, I would recommend reading this series in order. You see, this isn’t quite a full four-star rating. It was extremely close, but the gaps in my knowledge meant I did not appreciate all the elements put forth in this book. Due to this, I rounded up. I also plan to go back and read the prior books – not only to fill in my knowledge gaps, but also because I am interested in reading this series in its entirety.

Despite being an extremely short read, a lot happens in this one. We have a sweet yet steamy romance – one that is a bit of an instalove story, but fun nonetheless. We have some action – some big scenes play out, although I do feel as though the action was rather quick for all that came together. We have plenty of drama – between the characters and relating to specific events. The way things came together was a lot of fun, making for an enjoyable quick read.

Without a doubt, I’ll be reading more of this author. I’ve already gone and downloaded the first book in the LaRue series, and plan to dive into it soon.

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Blog Tour: Moon Bound.

BLOG
TOUR copy.jpg

Moon Bound, an all-new paranormal romance from Donna Grant is available NOW!

5104Lq5rf3L
HIS CURSE TO BEAR
Enigmatic and strong-willed werewolf Kane LaRue realizes the benefits of doing things in a pack. But not this time. He feels responsible for the additional terror a Voodoo priestess has leveled on his family, and has vowed to stop at nothing to end her reign of terror. He almost had Delphine once, and this time, he’s promised himself that he will succeed in wiping her from the face of the earth—or die trying. But when her followers almost destroy him, Kane is forced to accept the help of a stunning and fiercely independent woman who makes Kane re-evaluate what’s important…and listen to his heart.
HER WILL TO SURVIVE
Elise is a survivor, but because of the tragic events of her past, she has chosen to live out her days in the bayou, helping the animals she loves and giving back as much as she can to the community that literally saved her life. When a gorgeous dog she tries to save turns out to be so much more, Elise is compelled to let someone in—and faces things about herself she isn’t entirely comfortable with. But the breathtakingly handsome shifter makes her feel things she hasn’t experienced in ages, and she soon realizes that she needs Kane’s help as much as he needs hers. Together, they are unstoppable, and if they’re lucky, they just might rid the world of the evil that has plagued New Orleans for much too long.

Excerpt:

Vicious growls yanked her from sleep. Elise sat up so fast, she knocked Mr. Darcy off her stomach. A look outside showed a pack of dogs attacking an animal. She rushed to the door and banged her hands on the doorjamb to break up the fight, but none of the animals heard her over the commotion. Then she spotted black fur and realized the pack was attacking the black dog she’d seen before. The danger didn’t even enter her mind when she grabbed the shotgun from atop her fridge and rushed from the house into the rain. She yelled, but nothing seemed to get the dogs’ attention. Then she fired off a shot into the ground, not to hit the animals, but to hopefully scare them off. It worked. At least, it did at first. Then a few of the dogs returned to the black one. “Get out of here!” she yelled and aimed the gun towards the pack, firing into the ground again. She didn’t want to kill any of the animals, but she would if they didn’t give her a choice. Thankfully, after the second shot, they ran off into the woods. Elise shook the water from her face but kept her gaze on the woods in case the pack returned. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw the black dog collapse. She’d known he was large, but up close, he was massive. By the look of him, he had some wolf in him. Yet the longer she looked, the more wolf she saw in his features. But that couldn’t be right. Wolves weren’t native to the area. After her months spent at a wolf conservatory, she knew the animals, and she was looking at a damn wolf. After several minutes of quiet, she glanced around for any sign of the others. The animal was unconscious, his breathing shallow, and wounds all over him. She couldn’t leave him out there since she needed to tend to his injuries, but getting a wolf into her house and the room she worked out of would be difficult. Not to mention that if he woke, she might not make it out of the situation alive. Since she didn’t know the extent of his wounds, she didn’t want to give him a tranquilizer. Which left her few options. Elise was about to go in and call someone for help when she happened to glance at the water. The rain had caused her to miss the slight ripples, but she spotted the eyes of a gator as it swam toward them. She glanced at the wolf and saw that his back legs were in the bayou. “Well, shit,” she said and set down her gun to grab hold of him beneath his shoulders to pull his body out of the water and safely onto land, far enough away that hopefully, the alligator wouldn’t follow. She saw the blood pooling from wounds on his back leg that had filled the water with smells the gator couldn’t resist. She took a chance and continued backing up toward her porch, glancing over her shoulder to check on her progress every few seconds—not to mention keeping an eye on the wolf while praying he didn’t wake and bite her. When she finally reached the side door that she had put in to lead into the second bedroom that she’d converted for her work, she gently released the animal and leaned against the house for a second to catch her breath before rushing to get her gun. She was soaked—with both rain and sweat. The wolf was incredibly heavy. She had no idea how she was going to get him up the steps and into the house without waking him. After taking a few gulping breaths to calm her racing heart, she knew she had to do something before the wolf woke. Elise opened the side door and leaned her gun against the wall as she looked around for anything she could use to get him inside. Her shoes slipped on the floor, causing her to bang into the stainless steel table. She winced and pushed the button on the side to lower it to the floor. Then she rushed back outside. It would be so much easier if someone were there to help her carry the animal inside. She was reaching for the wolf when a howl split the air. Elise stood frozen, chills racing over her skin. A moment later, several more howls joined the first. By the sound of them, the pack had surrounded her house. Swallowing, she lowered her gaze to the animal at her feet. This wasn’t her first time working on wild creatures. She’d gone to Montana to help the local wolf sanctuary with the animals for several summers, also helping the ones roaming the wilderness. But she was never alone. After so many years working on farm animals and pets, Elise found her hands shaking. She fisted them and took a deep breath. She could do this, but she had to move quickly because when the animal woke, he would tear through everything. She bent to grab the animal when the fur began to recede— replaced by skin. Before her eyes, the black wolf changed into a man. Startled, Elise stepped backward. Her heel caught the edge of the steps, and she began to fall. She waved her arms to right herself, but the next thing she knew, she was on the ground with rain pounding her face. She hurriedly rolled onto her side and looked at the wolf/man. Thankfully, he was still unconscious. A howl, closer than any of the others, caused her to jerk in fear. She jumped up and hooked her arms beneath the man’s arms and unceremoniously pulled him inside the house.

AVNOW
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Read Today!

Amazon Universal: myBook.to/MoonBound
Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2j6MPxK

About Donna:

Donna Grant is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the sizzling Dark King series featuring dragons, immortal Highlanders, and the Fae. She was born and raised in Texas but loves to travel. Her adventures have taken her throughout the United States as well as to Jamaica, Mexico, and Scotland. Growing up on the Texas/Louisiana border, Donna’s Cajun side of the family taught her the “spicy” side of life while her Texas roots gave her two-steppin’ and bareback riding. Despite deadlines and voracious reading, Donna still manages to keep up with her two children, four cats, and one long haired Chihuahua. 
Donna
Grant

Connect with Donna:

Text text DRAGONKING to 24587
Instagram→ Instagram.com/DGAuthor
Goodreadshttp://bit.ly/2vinVCD
Spotify Playlists http://bit.ly/donnagrant_author
Website→ www.DonnaGrant.com










Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Review: Hard Landing

Hard Landing Hard Landing by Becky McGraw
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hard Landing is my second Beck McGraw read, even though it is the sixth book in the Deep Six Security series. Having read and enjoyed Silent Knight, I needed more. With book five working perfectly fine as a standalone novel, I had a feeling book six would be the same. I was correct in my assumption – it does make for a great standalone novel – but I really do want to go and read the rest of the series. The books work perfectly fine as standalone novels, but I am now left so intrigued by the side characters from this story and wish to go back and read their individual stories.

From the very start, I was pulled into Hard Landing. I had been hoping for a romantic suspense, an intense rescue mission, only to be given something else – something I enjoyed much more. Whilst there is an intense rescue mission, this story has much more depth and many more events. Silent Knight provided a book with many layers, more emotional depth than a simple romantic suspense, yet it was nothing compared to this book. Hard Landing is an intensely emotional read, one that deals with a number of heavy issues.

It is a very quick read, one that can easily be finished in a single sitting, but such does not lessen the emotional impact of the story. It is a wonderful romantic story, but it also deals with other life issues. It takes the bad and shows how such issues can be overcome, how a person can continue even when it seems like there is very little light ahead. Often such stories feel as though they’re preaching, as though they’re trying to force someone else’s mentality onto you, but such is not the case with Hard Landing. Hard Landing provides a story of someone moving forward in their life, providing you an intensely beautiful real-life romance story.

Had I not already been planning to pick up the rest of the Deep Six Security books, this would have convinced me to do so. In fact, I may have to bump them up my to-read list. I’ll also need to add Beck McGraw’s other books to my to-read list, as I believe I’m going to be quite the intense fan by the time I’m caught up with her work.

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Review: The Midnight Queen

The Midnight Queen The Midnight Queen by Sylvia Izzo Hunter
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Midnight Queen is the first book in Sylvia Izzo Hunter’s Noctis Magicae series. In truth, it is more of a three-point-five star read; whilst I debated rounding up, in the end I decided to round down. There were some four-star moments, but there were more three-star moments, hence why I rounded down.

The Midnight Queen grabbed my attention by the intriguing concept: historical fiction mixed with magic is a sure way to grab my attention. However, the book was not as mind blowing as I had hoped it would be. It was fun, yes, but I had expected something more from this one.

The story was interesting from the start, but it took a long time before I was lost in the events. I was intrigued by what was happening, but I wasn’t sucked into the action. This was mainly due to the length of time it took before the events really started to move – there was a lot going on, but a lot of it was a means of giving us information. As there were so many elements to the story, it took was lot to get the head around – information came together, but it takes a decent amount of the book before you’re able to put everything together well.

With there being so many different elements, it was great to see how they all came together. We were introduced to so much throughout this one, and whilst there were times when I thought the story to be a bit slow, it was satisfying to see how things went together. Moreover, I feel as though there is quite a bit of potential for the future events in Lady of Magick and A Season of Spells. I may not be overly excited to pick up the next two books, but a part of me is intrigued by what could come next.

Overall, an interesting read even if it wasn’t all it could have been.

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Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Release Day Blitz: Moon Bound.

RELEASE BLITZ copy

Moon Bound, an all-new paranormal romance from Donna Grant is LIVE!

5104Lq5rf3L.jpg
HIS CURSE TO BEAR
Enigmatic and strong-willed werewolf Kane LaRue realizes the benefits of doing things in a pack. But not this time. He feels responsible for the additional terror a Voodoo priestess has leveled on his family, and has vowed to stop at nothing to end her reign of terror. He almost had Delphine once, and this time, he’s promised himself that he will succeed in wiping her from the face of the earth—or die trying. But when her followers almost destroy him, Kane is forced to accept the help of a stunning and fiercely independent woman who makes Kane re-evaluate what’s important…and listen to his heart.
HER WILL TO SURVIVE
Elise is a survivor, but because of the tragic events of her past, she has chosen to live out her days in the bayou, helping the animals she loves and giving back as much as she can to the community that literally saved her life. When a gorgeous dog she tries to save turns out to be so much more, Elise is compelled to let someone in—and faces things about herself she isn’t entirely comfortable with. But the breathtakingly handsome shifter makes her feel things she hasn’t experienced in ages, and she soon realizes that she needs Kane’s help as much as he needs hers. Together, they are unstoppable, and if they’re lucky, they just might rid the world of the evil that has plagued New Orleans for much too long.
AVNOW
copy.jpg

Read Today!

Amazon Universal: myBook.to/MoonBound
Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2j6MPxK

About Donna:

Donna Grant is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the sizzling Dark King series featuring dragons, immortal Highlanders, and the Fae. She was born and raised in Texas but loves to travel. Her adventures have taken her throughout the United States as well as to Jamaica, Mexico, and Scotland. Growing up on the Texas/Louisiana border, Donna’s Cajun side of the family taught her the “spicy” side of life while her Texas roots gave her two-steppin’ and bareback riding. Despite deadlines and voracious reading, Donna still manages to keep up with her two children, four cats, and one long haired Chihuahua.
Donna
Grant

Connect with Donna:

Text text DRAGONKING to 24587
Instagram→ Instagram.com/DGAuthor
Goodreadshttp://bit.ly/2vinVCD
Spotify Playlists http://bit.ly/donnagrant_author
Website→ www.DonnaGrant.com










Review: The Shade Amulet

The Shade Amulet The Shade Amulet by Andrea Pearson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Shade Amulet is the first book in Andrea Pearson’s Koven Chronicles. In truth, Andrea Pearson is an author to have appeared on my radar a few times, having grabbed my attention through my curiosity towards the Mosaic Chronicles. When the chance came about to read The Shade Amulet, however, I decided to jump into a different series by the author.

In truth, The Shade Amulet is more of a two-point-five-star rating for me. I rounded it up to three stars for one main reason – I feel as though most of my inability to understand the story is due to having not read the Mosaic Chronicles. Although this is clearly a standalone story, I felt as though there was something missing throughout.

You see, the world seems really interesting. There were many elements that intrigued me, but I never really understood them. It felt as though we were expected to understand the magic and the world, reading as though we’d do better if we had read the author’s other work. At no point does it say it is necessary to read the Mosaic Chronicles, yet enough references were made for me to feel as though I was lacking through having not read it. Thus, I feel as though my enjoyment of the story would have been increased had I read the Mosaic series first.

The story itself was simple, but attention grabbing. A lot happens throughout, and there are plenty of things open for the rest of the series. At times I felt as though there were too many things for such a short read, with certain things seeming forced into the story simply to meet a checklist (for example, an unnecessary love triangle), but for the most part I was intrigued by all that played out.

Whilst I am interested in seeing where the series goes next, I feel as though I will not do so until I have read the Mosaic Chronicles. For those who are a fan of Andrea Pearson, and have followed her work, I’m sure this will be another fun story in a well-known world.

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Sunday, 24 December 2017

Review: Golden

Golden Golden by Melissa de la Cruz
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Golden is the conclusion of Melissa de la Cruz’s Heart of Dread series, a book I read out of obligation. I finished reading the series because I brought all three of them, and was able to complete them in under forty-eight hours, but I wasn’t invested in them in the way I had hoped I would be. Regarding my enjoyment of this particular book, it was my least favourite of the series – the others I considered a two-point-five-star rating, but I couldn’t with this one.

The series had potential, there was the possibility of a wonderful dystopian-fantasy hybrid, but the series never reached the point I had expected it to. Everything was glossed over, things were rather predictable, and nothing really grabbed my attention. This was especially true in this final book. I wanted something big to happen, I wanted everything to come together well, but it played out in the same fashion as the prior books – things happened, but it was never really anything we experienced on a deep level.

For those who enjoyed the series, I’m sure they would enjoy the way this one came together. It was something a bit different to the norm, and I’m sure fans will enjoy it. But, as I said, I wasn’t invested in this series at all – I finished it because I owned the books.

Whether or not I will read another Melissa de la Cruz book remains to be seen. The Heart of Dread series has not left the best of impressions on me, so I’m somewhat dubious about picking up any more of her books. Maybe something will convince me, but I will not be going out of my way.

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Review: Stolen

Stolen Stolen by Melissa de la Cruz
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Stolen is the second book in Melissa de la Cruz’s Heart of Dread series. I didn’t particularly care for the first book, but as I’d brought the trilogy I decided to continue reading. After all, they are extremely quick reads that can be completed in a single sitting.

If the truth is to be known, I cannot decide if I liked this one more or less than the prior book. Certain elements seemed to have been improved, but other elements seemed to have disintegrated more. As with the prior book, I would possibly give a two-point-five-star rating, but it is not at the point where I would be rounding up. In other words, as with the first book, I wasn’t crazy about this one.

New elements were introduced in this book, and I did enjoy some of the new elements added. It added a little bit more to the story, and I hoped these would carry the story through. However, as with the prior book, we never really went in depth into anything – again, things were glossed over. Moreover, many of the new elements lead to rather predictable outcomes.

Overall, I wasn’t blown away by book two either.

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Review: Frozen

Frozen Frozen by Melissa de la Cruz
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Frozen is the first book in the Heart of Dread series. Melissa de la Cruz is one of those authors I constantly see, but never seen to pick up, yet Frozen won me over for one simple thing – dragons. I’m a lover of books with dragons in, firmly of the belief any book can be improved by the addition of dragons, thus I was intrigued by this one. A dystopian society crossed over with a fantasy world – there was such potential.

Truthfully, I was extremely disappointed by this one. I expected so much, yet it failed to deliver. At a push, I would go so far as to give it a two-point-five-star rating, but that is me being generous. It really is the potential that had me wanting to give the higher rating at a push, but deep down I do not believe it reached all the places it could have reached.

For me, my biggest issue is that everything seemed to be glossed over. Every time I thought something good was about to happen, it would be skipped over. An event would occur, and rather than diving into any depth about what was happening, it was over before it started. We never really got to experience anything – we were simply told things had happened. Due to this, I was disappointed by a lot of what happened – I could have enjoyed things, but I was never given the chance to.

In truth, had I not brought all three books when they were on offer I would not be continuing with this series.

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Saturday, 23 December 2017

Review: Dying for Space

Dying for Space Dying for Space by S.J. Higbee
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Dying for Space is the second book in S.J. Higbee’s Sunblinded series, and I enjoyed this one even more than the first. As with the first book it is more of a three-point-five-star rating, but it is more so personal preference that has me rounding down rather than anything about the book.

In the first book, Running Out of Space, we were introduced to a large number of elements that were pivotal to the story. Without a doubt, to understand this one you need to read the prior book. There are many references made to events and characters from the first book, and reveals that occur relate directly back to the prior book. This is not a series you can jump into it in the second book.

Following on from the events of the first book, a lot has changed for our main character. We’re introduced to many new elements of her life, and we’re quickly thrown into a world of drama and conspiracy. Throughout, there is plenty to keep you entertained, with new elements constantly being added. You’re never certain who you can trust, you never know what will happen next, and every page will keep you turning. Although I was intrigued by the first book, this one certainly held my attention a lot better – in fact, once everything started to move I found this one rather difficult to put down.

If you enjoyed the action and drama of the first book, you’re sure to enjoy the events of this second book. Everything is amplified in this one, all that comes together will leave you lost within the story. Countless new details are added, twists to the story are added, and everything moves forward in a wonderful way. A few things were a bit on the predictable side, but with so much going on I was not at all disappointed by working out some of the details, not when there was so much unknown.

Not to mention that ending. If you weren’t already pulled into the series, the ending will certainly leave you excited to pick up the next book. It is clear more drama is to come, there are many things I need to see come together, and I’m sure the next book will continue the upwards journey of enjoyment.

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Review: Running Out of Space

Running Out of Space Running Out of Space by S.J. Higbee
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Running Out of Space is the first book in S.J. Higbee’s Sunblinded series. It’s one of those books where I’m a bit torn when it comes to giving a rating, as in the end I’d like to give a point-five-star rating. Therefore, even though I have given it a three-star rating, know it is more of a three-point-five star read.

In truth, I was a little bit unsure about whether or not I wished to read this one. A part of me was intrigued, but another part of me was unsure as to whether it was really for me. Although I enjoy a good science fiction read, I am very particular about the science fiction books I pick up. When it comes to finding new authors in the genre, I’m especially nervous. I have such a long list of expectations when it comes to science fiction, and I’m never sure whether all the boxes will be ticked.

Running Out of Space did tick many of my boxes, but at the same time I wasn’t completely happy with the story. I think the biggest issue I experienced occurred at the start of the story. We dive straight into the story, which is wonderful, but I never really felt as though I understood the world we were in. I’m a huge fan of world building, and what occurred within this story felt like too little too late. If the truth is to be known, I had to double check to make sure I was reading Running Out of Space and that I hadn’t accidentally picked up Dying for Space by mistake. I love it when books throw us right into the action, but it was far too long before I had a solid image of the world in my mind. By the end of the book, I still had some questions, but what I did understand I really enjoyed.

Another element I really enjoyed is how well everything in this story came together. I was fearful at times, as I was never entirely sure as to where the story was going. There were so many storylines that I found myself questioning what kind of science fiction book this was to be. There was drama on so many different levels, multiple different elements were introduced, and I wasn’t sure what the story was building towards. When things did come together, when everything was put together at the end, it was wonderful. There are more things than I could list introduced throughout this one, and they all came together so well. At times I felt as though it was a bit much for one book, but I really do appreciate the way everything came together.

It may not have been everything I had thought it would be, it may not have ticked all my boxes, but Running Out of Space was certainly an interesting introduction to the Sublinded series.

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Friday, 22 December 2017

Review: Cockroaches

Cockroaches Cockroaches by Jo Nesbø
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Cockroaches is the second of Jo Nesbø’s Harry Hole series. I wasn’t crazy about the first book, but I heard many good things about the series and decided to continue. In fact, I have often heard the first two books are the least popular, and I’m determined to work through them both so that I can get to what is considered the good stuff before I make my decision about the series. If, however, the improvement between book one and book two is an indication of how things will continue to improve, then I’m sure I will come to really enjoy this series.

You see, I enjoyed Cockroaches a lot more than I enjoyed The Bat. It may not be the strongest four-star rating I have ever given, but it was certainly a much more enjoyable read than the prior book.

In the prior book I was disappointed by how many of the characters felt like crime novel clichés – the main characters and the side characters both. Although I felt like some of the side characters were a bit cliched, I enjoyed the main character a lot more in this one. Harry Hole still felt a little bit like a textbook cop, but there was more to him in this one than in the prior book. Basically, I enjoyed Harry Hole’s character a lot more in this book.

What I enjoyed more than the character growth, however, was the storyline. The storyline in the first book interested me, but I felt as though it didn’t move at a rate which I enjoyed. Cockroaches had an even more interesting storyline, and it kept me turning pages. I was intrigued by what would come next, I was curious as to how everything would come together, and I had a lot of fun with all the elements that were added.

In other words, Cockroaches is worth the read. If you’re a fan of the Harry Hole series and have yet to dive into the early books, then certainly do. If you were left a little bit unsure by the first book, then this second book will leave you a lot more willing to give the Harry Hole series a read.

Overall, I’m a lot more interested in continuing the series now I have read and enjoyed this second book.

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Review: When We Collided

When We Collided When We Collided by Emery Lord
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It seems to me ambivalence is the way to win a Goodreads giveaway. Whenever I’m ambivalent about winning a book, when I’m not overly fussed about winning, I seem to win. Such is the case with Emery Lord’s When We Collided. When We Collided is one of those books I’d seen a lot of, one of those books I felt a mild curiosity towards, but I wasn’t crazy excited about reading it. My main feeling towards the book was curiosity – I have read such mixed reviews, and I wished to see where I fell upon the divide.

In truth, my feelings towards When We Collide are rather mixed. I enjoyed parts of the story but not others – in many ways, I feel as though it tried to be too many things. It is a story of mental illness, a story about loss, and a teenage love story. Individually the elements of the story were enjoyable enough – some more than others – but when put together, I feel as though it missed the mark.

The mental illness element of the story was my favourite element. It demonstrated the highs and lows of bipolar really well, showing it is much more complex than people seem to realise. It shows us the complexity involved both for the individual and those around them, of how hard it can be to realise what other people are going through.

The other element I really enjoyed was the story of loss. As with the mental illness element, it covers a range of aspects involved in such a storyline. It was deep and touching, and you really come to feel for the people involved. It shows how different people deal, how different people work through the myriad of emotions.

My least favourite element was the romantic storyline. There were moments where it seemed to try too hard to be a cute love story, but I was never really invested in the relationship. It felt to me as though it took away from the other deeper elements. It seemed to me the story would have worked better had the characters simply been friends, helping each other through their problems, rather than forcing a romantic element upon the characters. It didn’t feel natural to me, it felt too forced.

Overall, this book had potential, but it tried to be too many things. Certain elements were done well, yet other elements failed to hit the spots it could have. Whilst I didn’t love it, I did not hate it either. At the very least, I can say I have read it.

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Review: Turo's Fated Mate

Turo's Fated Mate Turo's Fated Mate by Elle Boon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Turo’s Fated Mate is the seventh book in the Iron Wolves MC series, and an interesting read. It can be read as a standalone novel, such is how I read it, but I do believe the experience will be much better if you have read the rest of the series. There was a lot going on in this one, and I feel as though many of the elements relate back to information from the prior books – hence my belief in why you should read the other books first if you want the best experience from this book.

In truth, this book is not quite a four-star rating from me, but I blame this on my knowledge games from having not read the prior books – hence, I rounded up. There were little bits and pieces I feel I would have appreciated more had I read the prior books, and I plan to go back and read the other books so I understand everything completely. In fact, I’ve already gone ahead and downloaded Lyric’s Accidental Mate.

Having read and enjoyed other Elle Boon books, I had an idea of what I could expect from this one. There was a gripping storyline, interesting characters, action, and plenty of steam. All was provided, as I had hoped. The supernatural world was also very interesting. There was so much involved in this supernatural world, so many interesting elements, and I cannot wait to jump into the prior books in the hope of understanding it even better.

Overall, this was a fun quick read. Worth the read if you’re a fan of paranormal romance, but I do not think you get the best experience from jumping in without reading the prior books.

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Review: One Kick

One Kick One Kick by Chelsea Cain
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I procrastinated on purchasing One Kick due to the question mark over the publication of book two. I had no wish to read the first book in a series when there are doubts about when – even if – book two is going to be published. However, when I found One Kick going extremely cheap in the bargain section of the book store, my ability to put off buying the book completely crumbled. Being a fan of Chelsea Cain’s Archie Sheridan and Gretchen Lowell series, I found myself too curious about Kick Lannigan.

I left this book feeling how I feared I would – I regret reading it. Not because it was a bad book, but because I need to know what comes next and I have no idea if I will ever receive all the answers I desire. My fingers are crossed we one day get the rest of Kick Lannigan’s story, yet a part of me does fear it may never happen. As I said, though, crossed fingers.

Having read the Archie and Gretchen series, I knew to expect something dark from Kick. Anyone who has picked up a Chelsea Cain book knows she deals with dark topics. It’s the thing that pulls me completely into her books. I may not be the biggest fan of Chelsea Cain’s actual writing, but the stories she creates are always gripping. We look evil in the face, and it pulls us in deep.

Despite loving the darkness in the Archie and Gretchen series, I was worried about the darkness in Kick’s story. The topics dealt with in One Kick are extremely sensitive, and had it not been done right things could have gone very wrong. Hence why I was tentative. Fortunately, I had no reason to fear. Chelsea Cain deals with a very dark topic, and does so well. It is grisly without being overly graphic – we know what happened without the book going into vivid detail. It is a nice divide between the two, ensuring you get all the darkness without being forced to read things that could be considered taking things too far.

As with Chelsea Cain’s other series, the dark topic leads to a complex main character. We may not love all the characters involved, we may not enjoy all the choices made, but the story does pull you in. There are points where things move a bit slowly, but throughout we are interested in seeing how things come together. There is plenty to the story to keep you engaged, many things that will leave you wanting more. Once the story pulls you in, it is extremely difficult to take a step back.

This brings me to my annoyance – the ending. There are plenty of questions left open at the end, a cliff-hanger in many ways, and I’m annoyed at myself for putting myself in this position. I really do hope we get our answers one day, as the ending left things so open regarding where things could go in the future. I’m sure if this series continues, it will grow ever stronger.

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Thursday, 21 December 2017

Review: The Unmasked CEO

The Unmasked CEO The Unmasked CEO by Miranda P. Charles
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Unmasked CEO is the seventh book in the Captured by Love series, although it works perfectly fine as a standalone novel. It seems I have found myself reading these books completely out of order, and I find myself enjoying each one perfectly fine as a standalone novel, although I can see how it would be more fun to read the books in order. Whether you read the series in order or whether you just pick up the stories that interest you, I find these books to be well worth the read.

As with the other books in the series, The Unmasked CEO is a pretty quick read, one you can complete in a single sitting. You’re pulled in from the very start of the story, and you’ll constantly be flicking pages due to your desire to see what comes next. Although you have a clear expectation of how things will come together, the specifics leave you curious as to what details will be revealed as you work deeper into the story. In fact, as you work through the book, you find there are more layers to the story than you initially anticipated, ensuring you keep turning the pages.

Like the other books I have read in the series, the many different elements of the story pull you in. It has all you would expect from a fun quick romance – great character, chemistry, and drama. There’s a slight undercurrent towards the end towards what could be considered romantic suspense, but not in the typical sense – it’s more so a danger aspect, something to add an additional punch before the book ends.

Without a doubt, it was another addicting addition to the series. I cannot wait until I dive into yet another Captured by Love book, as I really do need to fill in all the little blanks I have from jumping around the series so much.

Well worth the read for anyone looking for a fun quick romance.

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Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Review: Crave

Crave Crave by Shanora Williams
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Crave is the third Nora Heat Collection story, but it works perfectly fine as a standalone novella. I read it as such, and found it worked perfectly fine without having read the prior books. It seems to me, you can pick and choose which of these stories you wish to read.

You're warned at the story of this book that it is not the kind to have a deep story, focusing more upon the quick and steamy elements. Such is certainly the case with this story, and people should be aware before entering. I know for many, due to this element, it will not be for them. However, if you do enjoy quick stories that focus upon the steam rather than a deep storyline, then this book is certainly worth reading.

I find I have a love-hate relationship with such novels. I can appreciate such novels, but I need to be in the mood for them. I believe with Crave, I simply wasn’t in the right mindset to enjoy it as much as I could have. It was enjoyable, yes, but I found I would have preferred it to have had more depth. There was a storyline underneath it all, but a lot of it was glossed over in exchanged for the coming together of the characters in the bedroom. Whilst it was well written, and there was fun to be had, I wasn’t as blown away by it as I could have been.

This is very much a story where a person’s enjoyment will be dependent upon how much depth they like their stories to have.

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Blog Tour: Crave.

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Crave, an all-new romantic STANDALONE from Shanora Williams is available NOW!

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Crave by Shanora Williams

Release Date: December 15th, 2017

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Every Sunday morning it’s just us in a fancy hotel suite.
We fight, argue, and make up like teenagers do.
We touch, we suck, but we don’t kiss.
No, we never kiss.
His lips have been all over my body - everywhere but on top of mine.
I wasn’t supposed to need his touch.
To beg for a kiss . . . just one little kiss.
But our little arrangement has swallowed me whole.
I only crave one thing, but I know he’ll never give it to me.
Because the only way he’ll kiss a woman is if he loves her.
And my playboy boss will never love me.
Crave-AN

Read Today!

(Free in Kindle Unlimited)
Amazon Universal: http://mybook.to/CRAVEBUY
Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2kXX4Yn
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About the Author:

Shanora Williams is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who loves writing about flawed heroes and resilient heroines. She is a believer that love outweighs all, but doesn’t have a problem making her characters fight for their happily ever after. She currently lives in Charlotte, North Carolina and is the mother of two amazing boys, has a fiercely devoted and supportive man, and is a sister to eleven. When she isn’t writing, she’s spending time with her family, binge reading, or running marathons on Netflix while scarfing down chocolate chip cookies. ShanoraWilliams.png

Connect with Shanora:

Twitter: @shanorawilliams
Instagram @reallyshanora
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Saturday, 16 December 2017

Blog Tour: Dying For Space.

Dying for Space banner

This is my stop during the blog tour for Dying for Space by S.J. Higbee. This blog tour is organized by Lola's Blog Tours. The blog tour runs from 14 till 31 December. See the tour schedule here.

Dying for SpaceDying for Space (The Sunblinded Trilogy#2)
By S.J. Higbee
Genre: Science Fiction
Age category: New Adult
Release Date: 14 December 2017

Blurb:
Cadet Officer Elizabeth Wright just wants to make her father proud, while the mercenary warlord is looking for her to replace his dead family…

I finally get the opportunity to become a serving officer and fulfil my childhood dream, as well as get to know my biological father, General Norman. And when I first clap eyes on Restormel, the HQ of my father’s space mercenary outfit, it’s the most beautiful building I’ve ever seen.

But appearances can be deceptive. There are dark secrets hidden in the twisting corridors and blood-soaked cells beneath the training grounds and banqueting rooms. Secrets that seep out. Secrets that demand fresh victims, because whatever else happens, they can’t be allowed to see the light of day…


You can find Dying for Space on Goodreads

You can buy Dying for Space here on Amazon

First book in the series:
Running Out of Space
Elizabeth Wright has yearned to serve on the space merchant ship Shooting Star for as long as she can remember – until one rash act changes everything…


You can buy Running Out of Space on Amazon

Except:

Hearing the hostages’ appeals for help had hardened the mood on Peacebringer. I swear the
crew would’ve spacewalked down to Modimo, where we finally cornered the slimers. They
were heading for a series of caverns in the foothills surrounding one of the biggest plateaux on
the dirtball. Bilge-babble claimed that Morrigan was up for vaporising the moon, but as it
orbited the mining planetoid Hosi, that was a complete non-starter.
Our fighting force landed over the horizon from their camp. We spent a long, unlovely
journey bouncing around the transporter as it jolted along what passed for a road on this dustscuffed
ball. Then, bruised and aching, we disembarked and crawled for a long light year to
surround them, all fully suited as Modimo’s atmosphere was only just breathable if you moved
no faster than a dozing snail. We’d just got into position when their proximity alarms started
howling.
Sergeant Gently’s face tightened behind his facemask as his voice growled into my eardrop,
“Right. This is liable to get flooding messy.” He glared at me as if it were my fault. “You stick
with me like we’re Tuf-Taped together. Got that?”
“Yessarge.” My mouth was on auto while the rest of me was struggling to take it in. I was
actually seeing real action. Today some bad people were going to die. Maybe some of us would
get hurt, too. My guts churned with excitement and fear. Inside battle gauntlets, my hands were
damp. The only dank spot was having Sergeant Gently alongside.
Even now, as lasers spat and spyflakes sizzled on max power around me, resentment burned.
Was I also rushing to attack alongside the rest of the crew? Nah, I was tethered to Gently’s
apron-strings. Gripping my weapon, I cursed under my breath as everyone else surged past us.
Fact was, I was so busy fuming about being kept out of the action I missed Sarge’s first handsig
to move up. His slap across my visor soon had me paying attention, though. After which, I
was struggling to keep up with Gently, who must’ve been related to a snake, the speed he bellywriggled
across the ground.
Come to think of it, his Mum being a poisonous reptile would explain much about him.
“Give it up! You’re not gonna get outta this. Throw down your weapons!” Morrigan’s
amped voice roared over the opening stutter of weapons’ fire.
“Go prod yourself, bitch! Or better still – wait till I give you one, myself!” came back the
reply. “Keep this prod-fodder company, why don’t you?” A girl about my age stumbled as she
was shoved out from behind a rock, falling to her knees. Wearing nothing but a few shreds and
a breather, she was bloodstained and filthy. And so traumatised, she seemed indifferent to the
weapon trained on her head.
They’d chosen their position well. It was a small gully surrounded with boulders and the
geo-fiz readouts suggested the area was honeycombed with caves. We all knew if the pirates
managed to escape underground, we could spend the next year trying to flush them out. Our
air-drone hovering over their camp suddenly exploded in a fireball and sadly, the flaming
remains didn’t land on top of them.
Sarge started swearing under his breath as the Captain’s voice came through my eardrop,
“Our spyflakes are being fuzzed, but we estimate there are around twenty bandits and between
four and ten hostages. So careful who you’re shooting at, people. That said – our instructions
are that this scum don’t leave here in one piece. The ship they took is one of our subscribers.”
Does that mean the hostages are expendable? I didn’t know. Thinking of that girl and what
she’d gone through made me sick to my stomach. Looking up, I spotted another air-drone
buzzing in the sky. Laser fire broke out ahead of us and the ground shook as something big
exploded off to the left. I couldn’t see a thing, stuck behind the largest rock Gently managed to
find. Indeed, it was so big you could’ve fitted at least another two useless newbies behind it. I
started shuffling to the edge. Until a hand landed on my shoulder.
Sarge growled in my eardrop, “If I had my way, we’d still be aboard Peacebringer alongside
Morrigan – but she wanted me with the troops. Which is why you’re here. But don’t you so
much as breathe without my yaysay, girl.”
“No, Sarge.” My voice was flat with the effort of holstering my temper. I was s’posed to be
experiencing action – not shielded behind some old rock while everyone around me got to join
in!
“Cover my back and then follow when I’m in position. On my mark,” he snapped.
Easing right up behind Sarge, the sharp smell coming off him was a shock. He’s afraid.
“Now!” Gently dived across the gap between our rock and the next smaller boulder. For an
older man, he moved fast.
Jabbing my weapon out round the rock, I let off a couple of volleys. Then recalled
Morrigan’s words about being careful who we shot at. Cold with horror, I stopped. What if I’ve
just taken down one of our own? Or worse still – one of the hostages?
A zipping burst pinged off the rock, pattering stone shards onto the sand. I crawled to the
other side and risked a quick look. A bandit had my boulder in his sights and was waiting. I
jerked back as dust and hot splinters flared off my suit shielding. Another spatter of laser fire
erupted on either side of me. What if they’ve surrounded me? What if I’m cut off? What if I hit
Sarge and I’m left here?
Get a grip, for Mother Earth’s sake! Jessica’s nagging was no help.
Gritting my teeth, I loosened the flap on my pulse grenades. The crudsuckers weren’t taking
me without a deal of grief. After seeing what they’d done to that poor girl, no way was I gonna
end up like that.
“Norman! Move up,” roared Sarge. “Now, flood it!”
Light-headed with terror, I flung myself across the gap to the smaller boulder. The bandit
who’d been shooting at me was slumped across the scarlet-splashed outcrop. I only managed a
fleeting glimpse as I dived for cover, but the sight brought a savage spike of pleasure. Yeah!
Hope it hurt, you hell-bound bilgescum.
Sarge was waiting, eyes glittering behind his facemask. “When I say, ‘Move’ I don’t ʼspect
you to take all day over it!”
“No Sarge.” There was nothing else to say, especially as he had a point.
“We gotta lay down some diversionary fire. Trust your suit. It won’t fail. Think you can do
it? Cos if you can’t, there’s no shame in it. This sliming mess,” he muttered, jerking his helmet
towards the fighting, “isn’t normally how we ease newbies in.”
My face burned with shame. While I’d been cowering behind that rock, I’d left him waving
in the wind. I should’ve been the one to take out that pirate, not left it to someone else. “I can
do it, Sarge. My word on it.” I hefted my weapon, flinching at the bright green readouts winking
back at me. Everyone’s firearms around me were mostly showing orange.
I ducked out from behind the boulder. Two pirates had just set up a phase cannon off to the
right, which could potentially pin down several of our positions – including ours. However, it
was pointed at one of the smallest rocks where a couple of our people were trapped.
As he started shooting, the shielding flared red around it and Sarge’s voice sounded in my
eardrop, “If the scumsac gets a shot off at that rock, Claxton and Thursk will be chewing
carbonised sand.” He paused as he squeezed off another round. Soon as he stopped, I aimed
and fired, swallowing rancid-tasting fear.
Claxton and Thursk were in a world of trouble. The only thing stopping them being blown
off the face of the dirtball was our combined firing. Because to fire the cannon, the zilchers
would have to drop their shields and so long as Sarge and me kept up our barrage, they wouldn’t
risk it. So we thought.
One of the bastards ducked down and bobbed back up, holding up a small boy in front of
him and the cannon. They were going to use him as a human shield while they blasted away at
Claxton and Thursk. About the same age as Luke, the child was crying as the slimesac jabbed
a laser pistol at his head.
“Mine!” Sarge knelt up, steadied his weapon and aimed.
I held my breath, waiting alongside him. As soon as the tell-tale shimmer outlining the
cannon and its crew disappeared, I heard Sarge hiss.
OhMotherEarthabove, he’s not going to— But he did. That headshot was the sweetest piece
of targeting I’ve ever seen – and I’ve seen a whole lot since then. The scuzzer slumped forward,
knocking the boy clear of the pirate’s outcrop. The child curled in a ball, screaming for his
Mummy.
I was on my feet, zigzagging towards him before I thought about it.

SJ HigbeeAbout the Author:
Born the same year as the Russians launched Sputnik, I confidently expected that by the time I reached adulthood, the human race would have a pioneer colony on the Moon and be heading off towards Mars. So I was at a loss to know what to do once I realised the Final Frontier wasn’t an option and rather lost my head - I tried a lot of jobs I didn’t like and married a totally unsuitable man.

Now I've finally come to terms with the fact that I’ll never leave Earth, I have a lovely time writing science fiction and fantasy novels while teaching Creative Writing at Northbrook College in Worthing. I’ve had a number of short stories, articles and poems published – the most recent being my story ‘Miranda’s Tempest’ which appeared last year in Fox Spirit’s anthology Eve of War. I recently signed a publishing contract with Grimbold Publishing for my science fiction novel Netted, which is due to be released in 2019.

I live in Littlehampton on the English south coast with a wonderful husband and a ridiculous number of books. I can be found online chatting about books at my book review blog https://sjhigbee.wordpress.com/ and you’re very welcome to pop onto my website www.sjhigbee.com and my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/sjhigbeeauthor/.

You can find and contact S.J. Higbee here:
- Website
- Blog
- Facebook
- Twitter
- Goodreads

Review: Behind the Bars

Behind the Bars Behind the Bars by Brittainy C. Cherry
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The synopsis of Behind the Bars instantly grabbed me. It was beautiful, filled with promise, and I could not wait to find out more. Whilst I did expect a wonderful read, the book gave me even more than I imagined.

You see, this book, this book was painfully beautiful. It is the kind of book where I know my words will not do it justice, however I’m going to try my damnedest to try and convey all the feelings it gave me.

From the very first page I knew I was going to be lost to the story. There is something about Brittainy C. Cherry’s writing that pulls you in. It has a subtle beauty to it. The words flow together in a lyrical way, without being overly flowery. Every word has power behind it, all the sentence hit you where they should, and every paragraph seemed to have a line I thought quote worthy. I knew from the synopsis that I would be going into something beautifully written, but I was not prepared for the power of the words in this story.

The writing style alone was enough to win me over, but the story… Damn, the story. As I said, it was painfully beautiful. It mixes the good and the bad in the most amazing of ways, pulling your emotions in all kind of directions. You knew exactly what you were feeling, and yet you could not convey what you were feeling – so much was hitting you, so many different things hit you, that you were lost to sensation throughout. It’s not just one element that hits you hard, though, as so many different elements of the story hit you hard and continue to grind you down throughout.

As I stated, I was lost from the very first page. We are pulled into the story in such a simple manner, yet things quickly escalate. It starts by introducing us to our female lead, and the darkness in her life. We are then introduced to the male lead, and the darkness in his life. Neither are overly dark, but they both hit hard because both have the kind of darkness you can expect in real life. Sometimes in romance the darkness surrounding a character is so farfetched it is hard to connect with them, but not in Behind the Bars. In Behind the Bars, you can easily connect with what the characters are experiencing.

However, as with life, nothing is simple. Darkness and drama surround them. Things escalate, worsen. There is good and bad, beauty and horror, and throughout you’re pulled deeper into the story. There were moments where I was laughing out loud, followed by moments of pure sadness. This was a single sitting read, and across the couple of hours it took me to complete it my emotions went through so much. The highs were the highest and the lows were the lowest, and you felt everything. Honestly, I went on a true emotional journey throughout this book. Each time I thought I couldn’t take anything more, something more was thrown at me. So many emotions are touched upon, so much happens, and you cannot help but ride the waves. You will feel it, each and every emotion expressed – and you will love it, even if it leaves you heartbroken at the end.

Without a doubt, this was a fabulous book. I loved the writing. I loved the story. I loved the numerous elements that came into play throughout. I loved the characters. I loved the emotional depth. I loved the way everything came together. I loved how powerful the story was. I had high expectations, and this book certainly hit them all.

In fact, I was extremely close to giving this a five-star rating. There were plenty of moments throughout when I thought ‘yes, this right here is five-star material’. I debated with myself for a long time upon finishing, and just held out on giving it that five-star rating, though. It was a very strong four-point-five-star rating, but I do feel as though it lagged at some points. It wasn’t enough to ruin the book, very far from it, but it was enough for me to hold back on the five-star rating, as the small blips were enough for me to notice the change in the flow of the book.

Overall, I loved this. There is no doubt of me picking up the second Music Street book when it is released. Behind the Bars was my first introduction to Brittainy C. Cherry, but I can guarantee I will be reading more of the author’s work. It was a beautiful book, one that will stay with me for a long time, and I cannot wait to dive into more of the author’s work.

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Friday, 15 December 2017

Review: There Be Demons

There Be Demons There Be Demons by M.K. Theodoratus
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

There Be Demons by M.K. Theodoratus is one of those books I was drawn to due to the lack of information received by the synopsis. There was enough to leave me intrigued, but not enough to leave me able to predict how the story would play out. In other words, the possibilities this book had pulled me in.

With any book that contains demons, I found myself expecting a rather dark book. Whenever I read ‘demons’ I always hope for the darker Supernatural episodes, those where everything that could goes wrong does go wrong. What I often forget, as I did with this book, is that the level of demonic darkness I expect does not occur within young adult urban fantasy books. Thus, what I received wasn’t quite what I had been hoping for when I read the synopsis. It was a fun book, I cannot deny that, but it had a few too many of the standard young adult fantasy elements for me to be truly blown away by it.

The premise of the story was really interesting, with there being plenty of elements throughout that I found myself really enjoying. There are plenty of books that cover the battle between angels and demons, but I have read few books where we have gargoyles. It was a nice change to the usual, and I instantly found myself intrigued by this element of the story. It was something different, and I always enjoy something different. However, I do feel as though I never did learn as much about the gargoyles as I had hoped to. There were many times where we found stuff out about the specific gargoyles, but I would have liked a little bit more information about them as a collective, thus allowing me to see a much bigger picture of the unique element of the story.

What I really wanted more of, though, was big action scenes. A lot of the book is spent upon the characters developing into their roles, coming to terms with the situation, and I feel as though this was at the expense of what could have been many big action scenes. In many ways, I feel as though this book contained too much. There was plenty to enjoy, but I felt as though many elements were put into one book when it would have worked better had things been spread out across a couple of books. Even if it were duology, whereby the first book contained all the coming to terms with the situation that was included in this book and the second book focused much more on the taking down the bad guy. As someone who really enjoys to coming together of the big bad in books, I felt a little bit disappointed when the book gave us so much more when it came to the everyday conflict of the characters.

Don’t get me wrong, this was an enjoyable enough read, I simply believe I was in the wrong mindset to really appreciate it. I’ve been having a bit of an off period with young adult books recently, and I believe this is just another example of how I’m not in the right place to enjoy young adult, as I know many will really enjoy this.

For those who enjoy young adult books with a demonic twist, I’d certainly recommend giving this book a read.

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Cover Reveal: Hidden Seams.

Hidden Seams
By Alessandra Torre
Genre: Erotic Romance
Cover Designer: Perfect Pear Creations
 
Synopsis
 
A billion-dollar fashion empire, and it’s about to be mine...
I've worked a decade for this. I've sold my soul and my reputation. I've lived a lie, smiled for the cameras, and hated myself, all for this inheritance.
And then ... she pops up. A mysterious heir with a rap sheet, combat boots, and a mouth that I want to pin shut with my—
It doesn’t matter. I’ve played this game for a decade. I can continue the charade a little longer, keep my hands to myself and her body out of my mind. I can keep my secret until the ink dries and everything is mine.
Or not.
 
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About Alessandra Torre:
Alessandra Torre is an award-winning New York Times bestselling author of fourteen novels. Her books focus on romance and suspense. Torre has been featured in such publications as Elle and Elle UK, as well as guest blogged for the Huffington Post and RT Book Reviews. She is also the Bedroom Blogger for Cosmopolitan.com.
 
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