Book List 2017, Reviews

Review: “The Orange Cat and Other Cainsville Tales” by Kelley Armstrong

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Title: The Orange Cat and other Cainsville Tales

Author: Kelley Armstrong

Genre: Mystery and Magic (Though really, defies all genre)

Review:

The Orange Cat

This may have been one of my favourite of the tales in this book. It gives us more insight into Gabriel as a professional before the beginning of the Cainsville series. It is almost like gothic satire, reminding me a bit of a classic horror tale with a satirical modern spin on it. It also shows why Gabriel is so open to the thought of magic, and something otherworldly, other than Rose’s powers to foretell the future.

Bad Publicity

God, does Patrick have an ego or what? I hate to say it but he is still one of my favourite characters even though I know he’s not the best guy in the fight. I actually really liked this story because it actually showed how his ego might be his downfall one day.

Lady of the Lake

This was an interesting story for me, skirting the edges of Cainsville, and taking place somewhere I’ve driven along here in Canada. I found it interesting, as Olivia and Ricky did to find out how different places, and cultures have many of the same fae tales but under different names.

The Lady of the Lake was a formidable opponent and the danger, despite this being an in between tale, felt quite real for these two.

The visions as always were a little horrific, and I did appreciate getting a little bit more of Ricky’s point of view on Olivia’s relationship with Gabriel. It only served to flesh out his character more.

 

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Book List 2017, Genre: Romance, Reviews

Title: Dark Horse by BJ Daniels

dark horse

Title: Dark Horse

Author: B.J. Daniels

Genre: Romance and Suspense

Rating: Image result for heart emojiImage result for heart emojiImage result for heart emoji.5

Summary:

Burdened by family secrets, this cowboy rides alone

For twenty-five years, the case of the McGraw twins kidnapping has remained unsolved. As the eldest son, Cull oversees the McGraw horse ranch, wary of prying eyes. So when true-crime writer Nikki St. James comes forward with new information, Cull can’t believe his father invites her onto the compound.

His family has suffered enough–he’s not about to let St. James snoop and ruin them completely. But Nikki finds the eldest McGraw’s protectiveness as endearing as it is aggravating. After all, this case is personal to her, too… And her secrets can set the truth free–if they don’t destroy the McGraws first.

Received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

This book drew me in at the beginning with a very captivating, intriguing scene which is definitely an attention grabber. I’m a sucker for suspense, so sue me? (Actually don’t, I’m broke as a joke.)

Nikki St. James is a character I can definitely appreciate, as she is tenacious as she is smart, and definitely doesn’t know when to let go, even if it gets her in a touch of danger. She is a good character, with secrets of her own.

Cull McGraw is a tough guy. But not quite as tough as he thinks he is and I, for one, am perfectly okay with that. “Tough guys” appear in abundance. He also has some secrets, only his are far more tragic.

I was so disappointed that this book ended, and that I’d read it so quickly. The pace was quick moving, something I truly appreciate, and it was a nice, quick read. I will be looking for the next one and adding it to my to be read list.

This is recommended for anyone who likes mystery, and romance, with a touch of suspense. Don’t let the Harlequin label scare you off like I almost did.

Book List 2017, Reviews

Review: Two Nights by Kathy Reichs

two nights

 

Title: Two Nights

Author: Kathy Reichs

Genre: Mystery/Suspense

Rating: ★★★★

#1 New York Times bestselling author Kathy Reichs steps beyond her classic Temperance Brennan series in a new standalone thriller featuring a smart, tough, talented heroine whose thirst for justice stems from her own dark past.

Meet Sunday Night, a woman with physical and psychological scars, and a killer instinct. . . .

Sunnie has spent years running from her past, burying secrets and building a life in which she needs no one and feels nothing. But a girl has gone missing, lost in the chaos of a bomb explosion, and the family needs Sunnie’s help.

Is the girl dead? Did someone take her? If she is out there, why doesn’t she want to be found? It’s time for Sunnie to face her own demons because they just might lead her to the truth about what really happened all those years ago.

Received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Continue reading “Review: Two Nights by Kathy Reichs”

Book List 2017, Reviews, Series: Joe Tesla

Review: The Steel Shark by Rebecca Cantrell

the steel shark

Title: The Steel Shark

Author: Rebecca Cantrell

Series: Joe Tesla

Genre: Mystery/Suspense

Rating: Related image Related image Related image Related image

A dog. His computer. The tunnels under New York City.

That’s all Joe Tesla’s agoraphobia has left him with—the inside world, the dark world—and now the black depths of the sea.

In the latest book in this award-winning thriller series, Joe Tesla seeks to expand his world beneath. He buys a personal submarine to join an underwater scavenger hunt. The competition turns deadly when a mystery sub targets Joe. His search for answers drives him and his service dog out to sea where he alone might find answers in time to save the city he loves from annihilation.

But can a man trapped inside by his own fears save the larger world above?

Received a free copy of this book via the author and publisher in exchange for an honest review.

It truly does suck that my dream man is an agoraphobic fictional character who lives under Grand Central Station. Joe Tesla, in this, the fourth novel in Rebecca Cantrell’s Joe Tesla series, remains a character who is full of heart, warmth and an intelligence that just won’t be stopped by anything. Not even crashing submarines.

This newest installment caught me from the first page, making me quite anxious to get into my reading and finish the book, but at the same time I desperately didn’t want to because I didn’t want it to end.

Without spoilers I will tell you there is a lot of character development for Joe, as well as Vivian, and the mystery isn’t so much a mystery as it is a determined, forceful plot-line pulling you through the book. The wonder in this is that even though there is no big huge whodunnit mystery in this book there is still enough of a mysterious tone to keep you guessing as to what might happen next.

Rebecca Cantrell’s strength in writing for me has always been the way in which she captures my attention with just a single moment in her books. In this book there were so many moments if I had been holding a physical book I would’ve gotten paper cuts by how quickly I would’ve turned the pages.

 

 

Book List 2017, Reviews

Review: Day Shift (Midnight Texas # 2) by Charlaine Harris

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Title: Day Shift

Author: Charlaine Harris

Genre: Supernatural

Warning: Elder abuse

Silver Lining: Those responsible get what’s coming to them?

Rating: Image result for wolf paw print Image result for wolf paw print Image result for wolf paw print Image result for wolf paw print

There is no such thing as bad publicity, except in Midnight, Texas, where the residents like to keep to themselves. Even in a town full of secretive people, Olivia Charity is an enigma. She lives with the vampire Lemuel, but no one knows what she does; they only know that she’s beautiful and dangerous.

Psychic Manfred Bernardo finds out just how dangerous when he goes on a working weekend to Dallas and sees Olivia there with a couple who are both found dead the next day. To make matters worse, one of Manfred’s regular — and very wealthy — clients dies during a reading.

Manfred returns from Dallas embroiled in scandal and hounded by the press. He turns to Olivia for help; somehow he knows that the mysterious Olivia can get things back to normal. As normal as things get in Midnight…

Continue reading “Review: Day Shift (Midnight Texas # 2) by Charlaine Harris”

Book List 2016, Reviews

Rapid Reviews: Stephanie Plum 7-9

Overall rating: ★★★ and 1/2 

Rapid review 1: Seven Up by Janet Evanovich

This book is a quick fun read, and perhaps contains some of the menacing air of the first novel as Decooch is a sick old man. I loved the return of Mooner. Lula remains a disappointing almost racist caricature and there is no real character development.

Rapid review 2: Hard Eight by Janet Evanovich

This book returns to how ridiculous the Stephanie Plum novels to get, full of explosions and people dressed as rabbits. It’s tons of fun, and a really quick read. Though some people might be upset about the way relationships happen in this novel I kind of wish Stephanie would be single for a while.

Rapid review 3: Visions of Sugar Plums by Janet Evanovich

This is a silly little Christmas story, which is just what I wanted it to be, and Diesel is definitely a new entertaining character though does Stephanie have to want every guy she meets? Control yourself girl.

Rapid review 4: To the Nines by Janet Evanovich

Stephanie is one of the worst bounty hunters ever with the worst luck. This book contained a little bit more of a menacing air, though I did enjoy that. Mystery abounded…until I figured out exactly whodunnit very quickly I enjoyed the characters and the plot of this, though again the way Lula is treated still annoys me.

Nostalgia, Reviews

Nostalgiac Reads 1: Hear No Evil by Kate Chester

23When I was much younger than I am now, a heroine by the name of Sara Howell was brought to my attention, and I was told that she was awesome because she too was a “little bit different.”

Sara Howell is the teen protagonist in Kate Chester’s Hear No Evil series, and she is deaf. She speaks verbally, reads lips and signs. She is an orphan, with only a brother to care for her, but has some really great friends.

When I was younger I wanted to be her. Or at the very least be friends with her. She was/is feisty, and determined and not someone to trifle with.

I embarked on my re-read with this series with trepidation because well, not everything 90s holds up so well. And this book is dated, but not in a way that is bad by any means. Spanning six novels, and many adventures Sara’s tales are awesome, as she uses her Nancy Drew-like intellect to solve crimes, frequently exasperating her friends, brother and then boyfriend. She is a literary friend who I’m glad to have had in my life, because maybe when I question something without just following orders it’s because it’s something she would do.

That being said, I will definitely leave the investigating to the professionals.

Reviews

Veronica Mars is still smarter than me…

mr kiss and tell

When Veronica Mars came onto the screen originally in 2004 I was 16 years old, and turned 17 during the duration of the first season. We were then, roughly the same age which means when the show was cancelled, during both hers and my first year of college I was crushed.

Of course we had nothing in common. I’m a brunette. She’s a blonde. She lived in the seedy little town of Neptune where the rich ruled and the poor…well they didn’t didn’t do so well.

But she, unlike a lot of female characters at the time, was someone who I wanted to be like. Sure she could be rude, and tended to blaze forward without thinking of the consequences but she always stood for what she thought was right, whether it had to do with her friends or a complete stranger.

When the movie came about, a near seven years after the show’s cancellation I was thrilled. When the first book came out I bought it and read it in a few mere hours.

Veronica is 29 now. Suddenly she’s two years older than me, but like myself and so many other’s my age she’s still a little bit lost.

Her relationships have either flourished or fallen, and Neptune if possible is seedier than ever, the underbelly making its way to the top and  aided by the Sheriff (and isn’t that always the way).

But what remains consistent, from TV show, to movie to books is Veronica’s voice, and it rings pretty clear. The characterization is cohesive with who she was on the show, to who she became in the movie. Mac’s expanded role is something to smile at, though certain other characters minimized showing in the book did cause me some concern.

But either way, this book is exactly what I want Veronica Mars to be, feisty, determined, dangerous reckless, and as always…smarter than me. And everyone else in the room.

It is not a perfect book, as there are always flaws, just as there are in our heroes. But there is justice…and there is uncertainty.

Reviews

Review: The Silkworm by Robert Galgraith *cough* JK Rowling *cough*

the silkworm

Cormoran Strike would probably be a very hard person to like if he were real. He’s gruff, sometimes insensitive, often clueless despite being quite intelligent and can be quite rude. However, that doesn’t stop me from utterly loving him on the page. I know he’s flawed, he’s a pain in the ass and yes, sometimes it does suck to hear about how little he is able to take care of himself as a grown man. And he really needs to learn to give Robin her due, but despite that I love this book, I love him in this book and I adore this series.

The mystery was gruesome, as was the crime scene and the book within a book. JK Rowling’s writing has evolved quite a bit since the Harry Potter series although there was still lots of filler at times and the character growth is quite good. Cormoran is slightly better at allowing others to do things for him, and in one moment actually quite considerate of Robin. Robin seems better at standing up for herself in this book, and still remains my kinda gal with her need for adventure, and her ambition.

This was a big time page turner for me, and I found myself going beyond my five chapters at a time, to reaching for ten, for fifteen. I craved the ending, yet, i didn’t want it to end.

Reviews

Descent-A Review

descent

Descent-A Novel by Tim Johnston

There are certain books that might actually end up making better movies, or TV shows than novels. In my mind this book is one of them, with certain scenes needing a certain photographed or captured moment to illustrate them properly.

That is not to say that this is a bad book, because it most certainly isn’t. It is however, a book that required for me, a great deal of patience. The suspense I had read about in other people’s reviews did not hit me until about 100 pages in, when I really delved into the characters lives, and what was happening to what had once been a happy, albeit dysfunctional family.

Without spoilers I will tell you that the end of this novel gripped me, the words wrapping themselves around me and encasing me in them. The pages flipped rapidly and I found myself almost anxious to figure out what would happen next, the book held tightly in my hands.

The characters, I discovered had become people that I cared about. Fully fleshed out, and entirely flawed they had come with their own sets of problems, amplified by the trauma of what occurred in the mountains. They were not perfect. There was no perfection in this family, not even in Caitlin but yet that was what I continued to like about them. Their flaws.

This book felt very real to me, the situation unfortunately is one that does arise in life, as we constantly hear news stories about children who have gone missing, teenagers abducted. It was obvious to me that the author had attempted to draw me in with the familiarity of the situation and succeeded in doing so. This was not a book I started out loving, apprehensive of the subject matter and whether it could be dealt with sensitively enough.

It was handled beautifully, by the end, and horrifically (in a good way) at other turns. It is one I recommend to anyone who loves crime fiction, suspense or who is looking for something with a bit of familiarity but something that also manages to be unique.