Book List 2017, Reviews

Review: “Omens” by Kelley Armstrong

omens

Title: Omens

Author: Kelley Armstrong

Genre: Defies all genre but it’s fantasy, horror, suspense and mystery all rolled into one if you’re going to force me to label it.

Summary: 

Twenty-four-year-old Olivia Taylor Jones has the perfect life. The only daughter of a wealthy, prominent Chicago family, she has an Ivy League education, pursues volunteerism and philanthropy, and is engaged to a handsome young tech firm CEO with political ambitions.

But Olivia’s world is shattered when she learns that she’s adopted. Her real parents? Todd and Pamela Larsen, notorious serial killers serving a life sentence. When the news brings a maelstrom of unwanted publicity to her adopted family and fiancé, Olivia decides to find out the truth about the Larsens.

Olivia ends up in the small town of Cainsville, Illinois, an old and cloistered community that takes a particular interest in both Olivia and her efforts to uncover her birth parents’ past.

Aided by her mother’s former lawyer, Gabriel Walsh, Olivia focuses on the Larsens’ last crime, the one her birth mother swears will prove their innocence. But as she and Gabriel start investigating the case, Olivia finds herself drawing on abilities that have remained hidden since her childhood, gifts that make her both a valuable addition to Cainsville and deeply vulnerable to unknown enemies. Because there are darker secrets behind her new home and powers lurking in the shadows that have their own plans for her.

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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: Anatomy of a Scandal by Sarah Vaughan

anatomy of a scandal

Title: Anatomy of a Scandal

Author: Sarah Vaughan

Genre: Courtroom Suspense

WARNING: Rape

An astonishingly incisive and suspenseful novel about a scandal amongst Britain’s privileged elite and the women caught up in its wake.

Sophie’s husband James is a loving father, a handsome man, a charismatic and successful public figure. And yet he stands accused of a terrible crime. Sophie is convinced he is innocent and desperate to protect her precious family from the lies that threaten to rip them apart.

Kate is the lawyer hired to prosecute the case: an experienced professional who knows that the law is all about winning the argument. And yet Kate seeks the truth at all times. She is certain James is guilty and is determined he will pay for his crimes.

Who is right about James? Sophie or Kate? And is either of them informed by anything more than instinct and personal experience? Despite her privileged upbringing, Sophie is well aware that her beautiful life is not inviolable. She has known it since she and James were first lovers, at Oxford, and she witnessed how easily pleasure could tip into tragedy.

Most people would prefer not to try to understand what passes between a man and a woman when they are alone: alone in bed, alone in an embrace, alone in an elevator… Or alone in the moonlit courtyard of an Oxford college, where a girl once stood before a boy, heart pounding with excitement, then fear. Sophie never understood why her tutorial partner Holly left Oxford so abruptly. What would she think, if she knew the truth?

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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.

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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 2016

1. The World Beneath by Rebecca Cantrell

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Rebecca Cantrell is easily one of my favourite authors, as the way she manages to weave a tale together is truly inspired.

Plot
This book, and the story within it had me rapidly turning the digital pages, eager to find out what happened. Joe Tesla’s life within the tunnels is definitely a hard one, and one worth reading about. Though there were a few filler chapters overall this book and its plot are well written.

Characters
Joe, despite all his riches and presumable good fortune is an easy character to like. He’s also easy to empathize with, someone who is kind to those he meets but who is unable to deal with the outside world.

Dubois is a truly mad scientist, trying to play with things that no one could help to understand.

Edison, the yellow dog, is easily one of my favourite characters. Sweet, and charming he’s well trained. I was truly amused that he was named Edison, all things considered.

Vivian is not someone I am sure I can trust as of yet, but I do look forward to getting to know her.

Tone
The tone of suspense all throughout the novel was well kept up, and I found myself cringing and wanting to stop at certain moments when Joe was in true danger.

Setting
The setting, the New York City tunnel system is a character within itself in this novel. Sinister, dank, and scary this setting was well lent to the tone and feel of this novel.

Star Rating: ★★★★☆

Recommended for: Those who like medical suspense, or who have read Rebecca Cantrell’s previous novels.

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.