Wednesday, 21 August 2019

Eye of the Storm - Amy McKinley


Eye of the Storm
Amy McKinley
(Gray Ghost #2)
Publication date: March 6th 2018
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Deep in the untamed wilderness of the notorious Darien Gap, a soldier wakes. Injured, he has no memory of who he is or why he is there until a beautiful woman tells him his name. But can he trust her?
When Mari Dias stumbles upon Chris Shaw in the jungle—a place many risk but few survive—she enlists his help to escape a country ruled by the very family who hunts her.


Author Bio:
Amy McKinley is the romantic suspense thriller author of the Gray Ghost Novels, the Five Fates paranormal romance series, and several standalone books. Her edge of your seat books are filled with surprising twists and just the right amount of heat and danger. She lives in Illinois with her husband, two daughters, two sons, and three mischievous cats. You can find her at www.AmyMcKinley.com

My Review

Eye of the Storm is the second book of the gray ghost series. I haven't read any of the other books, so I can tell you with confidence that this works well as a stand-alone novel. I certainly enjoyed it and didn't feel that I was missing out on anything by not having read any of the other books. 
This book is mostly set in the jungle. Mari is on the run from some men who want to get hold of her, Chris doesn't know who he is or how he has got there, but together they have to try and survive and escape the dangerous environment.
This was a bit of an unusual romance. There is a great deal of action and at points, the romance takes a second place to that and at others, it's more important, but the action is still very much present. I found that I couldn't put this book down, wanting to know what was going to happen for the couple and if they would be successful. I have to admit that I'm a little bit sceptical of stories with larger than life 'hero' type characters who seem to be able to do things that are physically impossible for the rest of us. Both Chris and Mari seem to have almost superhuman survival and fighting skills, but in all honesty, I didn't actually mind that. I enjoyed reading about the growing feelings between the two of them as well as their attempts to escape the danger.
This is a thrilling and exciting read that drags you in quickly. I really enjoyed it and if this is what the other books in the series are like, I'd be keen to read those too.

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Tuesday, 20 August 2019

The Year I Left - Christine Brae


The Year I Left
Christine Brae
Published by: Vesuvian Books
Publication date: August 20th 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Women’s Fiction
“A thousand half loves must be forsaken to take one whole heart home.”
Carin Frost doesn’t understand what’s happening to her. A confident businesswoman, wife, and mother, she begins to resent everything about her life. Nothing makes sense. Nothing makes her feel. Maybe it’s the recent loss of her mother in a tragic accident. Or maybe she’s just losing her mind.
Enter Matias Torres. As their new business partnership thrives, so does their friendship—and his interest in her. Carin is determined to keep her distance, until a work assignment sends them to Southeast Asia where a storm is brewing on the island. In the midst of the chaos, Matias asks her to do something unimaginable, exhilarating, BOLD. Carin knows the consequences could be dire, but it may be the only way to save herself.
An honest look at love and marriage and the frailties of the human heart, this is a story of a woman’s loss of self and purpose and the journey she takes to find her way back.


Author Bio:
Christine Brae is a senior executive with a full time career, who thought she could write a book about her life and then run away as far as possible from it. She never imagined that her words would touch the hearts of so many women with the same story to tell. Christine has written six books since her first release in 2013. She is the author of The Light in the Wound and His Wounded Light (2013), Insipid (2014), In This Life (2016) and Eight Goodbyes (2018).
Her latest book, The Year I Left is scheduled for release in August, 2019.
When not listening to the voices in her head or spending late nights at the office, Christine can be seen shopping for shoes and purses, running a half marathon or spending time with her husband and three children in Chicago.
Christine is represented by Italia Gandolfo of Gandolfo Helin & Fountain Literary Management.

My Review

Sometimes when I'm reviewing books I struggle to know where to start. I have to admit that The Year I Left is one of those times. The book tells the story of Carin and her dissatisfaction with life. She meets a younger man through work, who she is drawn to irresistibly and her life begins to unravel around her as she tries to find her way again. 
I think part of my struggle with the review is not that I didn't enjoy the book, I did, but rather I didn't really like the main character. While I understood that she wasn't happy and felt for her feeling so trapped, there was also a lot that I didn't like and didn't really understand. I don't want to give away the things that happened in the course of the story, but on more than one occasion it was hard to understand why she acted the way that she did, or why she didn't just follow her heart without making a huge and drastic change. 
The story is beautifully written and it was next to impossible to put down, particularly in the second part of the book. I couldn't see where it was going to go and how things were going to be resolved, which of course kept me turning the pages. The storyline as a whole is thought-provoking and I can certainly see what the author was doing, it was just a shame for me at least, that I couldn't relate to the main character and didn't really have a lot of sympathy for her. Having said that, I was left satisfied with the end of the story and did warm to her a little eventually.
This was a great read, it dragged you along, pushing your emotions all the way and I think was ultimately attempting to get you to question what was really important. I'd definitely recommend it.

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Sunday, 18 August 2019

All I Want - Tamara Lush

All I Want (Paradise Beach #2)All I Want by Tamara Lush
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I'm really enjoying this series from Tamara Lush, this is the second Paradise Beach book that I've read in the last few days and I don't think that it will be the last. While the first book focused on Damian and Kate who fall in love after reconnecting years after they knew each other at high school, this second book is about Damian's brother Max and Kate's best friend Lauren.
Max is a workaholic who owns a real estate business in New York. Lauren is a social media influencer. After an accident at Paradise Beach, Lauren finds that she has to stay there for a while and as they spend more time together she and Max fall for one another.
This is quite a fun, lighthearted series. Having said that, despite it being lighter, it does at least touch on some more weightier issues. Lauren is dealing with (or it might be more accurate to say not dealing with) having an addict for a parent and how that has made her who she is. It also talks about the way social media projects lies and that much of it is fake. The combination of this fairly easy read, with something a little deeper, makes for a very interesting and entertaining read.
This is a romance and there's plenty of that. Max is a sweetheart and Lauren lovely, they work well together. I think that one of the things that I like about this series so far is that although they all have issues to deal with, the conflict doesn't feel contrived or over the top, as can happen in this type of book. The characters don't spend pages battling with their feelings or not really understanding what they are beginning to feel for the other person, even if they don't know how they feel. Somehow it's all much more natural than some other books.
I really enjoyed Lauren and Max's book and I suspect that we will see more of them in future books. Kate and to a much lesser extent Damian appeared in this one. All in all this a great series that I'm really enjoying.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Saturday, 17 August 2019

All I know - Tamara Lush

All I Know (Paradise Beach #1)All I Know by Tamara Lush
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In many ways, this is a very American story, I'm not sure that it could take place anywhere else. Not because of the characters so much, but the things that happen to them. Firstly our two main characters Kate and Damien have known each other (and been in love with each other since high school). After rumours and gossip that more than a kiss happened between them back then, Kate kept her distance, leaving for college and Nate joined the marines. I can't imagine anything like this happening back when I was at school, of course, there were rumours and of far worse than this, but no one would have cared.
The other thing that makes this a very American story is that after getting together, Kate and Damien decide to get married as she is sick and doesn't have health insurance and can't afford her medicine. I'm not going to make a comment on the politics of this, but I think it's fair to say 'only in America.'
The romance is quite sweet, although there's certainly plenty of chemistry there, Kate and Damien don't fall into bed together the instant that they get together. Instead, they actually go out together and do things before getting there. In fact, other than the getting married so quickly, this is quite a believable romance. They are reluctant to admit to each other how they feel, but I think that just adds to it. This is quite a sweet story and they clearly really care for one another.
What I really liked about this is that although there is a happily ever after here, there's still room for plenty more to come and I believe that they are going to get another story further in this series.
I really enjoyed this book and it made me keen to read more in the Paradise Beach series, probably a good thing as I have book 2 ready to go soon.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Thursday, 15 August 2019

The Debt - Jackie Ashenden

The DebtThe Debt by Jackie Ashenden
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The thing about a good romance is that even though you ultimately know where it's going to end up, it's the getting there that is so enjoyable. The Debt certainly was a good romance and I enjoyed every second of it.
I have to admit that I like a damaged hero and Ash is certainly damaged. Not only has he got a face marred by knife scars from his youth, streetfighting, but rejection from his father and a fallout with his half brother has left him emotionally damaged. Ellie has her own issues with the loss of her mother at a young age and a father who is at best emotionally stunted (actually, he's an arsehole, if the truth be told). But when they come together, the passion between them helps them move beyond their past.
I really loved the chemistry between these two. It was easy to see how drawn to one another they were. Ash tried hard to be ruthless and uncaring, but underneath his bravado, he was clearly nothing of the sort. I also really liked how they were both able to bring out the best in each other.
This was quite a quick read, but one that I really enjoyed.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Magnetic - Anya J Cosgrove




Who said life was a fairy tale? Because I’d gladly slice that jerk’s head off. 
I’m Vicky, though that’s not really my name.
Magnetic by Anya J CosgroveI never expected to end up half-naked in the woods with my guts hanging out. I didn’t plan to stumble upon the most powerful shifter clan in North America and three of the sexiest men I’ve ever laid eyes on.
Dominic, the fun and reckless new wolf. 
Sam, the hot doctor with glacial-blue eyes.
And Gabriel, the intense, secretive alpha who wants nothing to do with me.
My real name is a one-way ticket back to hell, and my secrets need to stay buried like the girl I used to be.
Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Red Riding Hood—I can be all three.  I can use my powers to earn a place in their werewolf town, away from the bite of my past mistakes. I can use them—and their bodies—to survive.
The only thing I can’t do is fall for them. 


My Review

Having read and loved the bloody hearts trilogy, I couldn't wait to read Anya J Cosgroves next book, magnetic. This is set in the same world and features Vicky, who was a minor character in that series. I was interested to see how Vicky's character would develop, as to be perfectly honest, I wasn't that keen on her. Fortunately, I wasn't disappointed, either in the way that this story was told or Vicky herself.

There's a lot going on in this book, with the story of Vicky's past coming out alongside her present situation with the three werewolves that she finds herself living with. Seeing things from Vicky's point of view certainly helped me to relate to and sympathise with her. 

This is a reverse harem romance, so there are not one, but three male leads. That said, they, all being different, have different roles to play and we see more of Sam and Dom than we do Gabriel. In fact, most of the action takes place between Vicky, Dom and Sam until later in the book.

If I had to find a small fault with this story, it would be that for me, it was all over a little bit too quickly. That's partly because I greedily read it all as soon as I could, but also because I think I'd been a bit spoilt with the last books being a trilogy. Even so, this was a really enjoyable read. I think that there might be more to come from this small community of werewolves and certainly hopefully from this world. I'm certainly looking forward to reading more books from Anya. 


Buy Links (kindle unlimited):

Teaser: attached


Author Bio:
Anya J Cosgrove lives in Qu├ębec with her husband, her beautiful son, and two mischievous cats. She works as a veterinarian by day. She’s a travel and Disney junkie and is passionate about her favourite paranormal series. What would Buffy do? Kick ass!

Social Media Links :
Sign-up for free, exclusive content, giveaways and the latest news here: http://bit.ly/anyaslair


Tuesday, 13 August 2019

Steal My Heart - Aimee O'Brian


Steal My Heart
Aimee O’Brian
Published by: Tule Publishing
Publication date: August 5th 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
When a fantasy turns into a cold reality
Lexanne Harris had a plan down to the last sexy detail. Never did she think her attempt to spice up her love life with her boyfriend would involve her in a burglary with a sexier than sin thief whose emerald eyes and serious between the sheets skills are impossible to forget. As a police detective she is expected to stand on the side of the law and fight for justice. But what happens when the lines of justice blur and what’s wrong becomes way too tempting?
The situation might be challenging but Lexanne is determined to get assigned to the case, recover the jewels and catch the culprit.
The question is: What will she do with her sexy cat burglar when she catches him?


Author Bio:
Having lived in both California and Texas, Aimee O’Brian now resides in the beautiful wine country. With her three children grown and experiencing their own adventures, she and her husband are free to explore the world. When she’s not reading, writing, or planting even more perennials in her garden, she can be found stomping through ancient ruins and getting lost in museums.



My Review

This is quite a short little romance, but don't let that fool you into thinking that there's nothing here, far from it. I will admit that I read this in pretty much one sitting, but sometimes so instant satisfaction is just what I'm looking for.

What is a little unusual about this one, is that we only really get things from the point of Lexanne, in fact she doesn't even know who her mysterious lover is until a few chapters into the book. In many ways, the idea of accidentally having sex with someone, thinking it was someone else could be quite creepy. Fortunately, the mystery man is quite the gentleman and clearly doesn't fully realise that she thinks that he's someone else. It also helps that the man she had intended to sleep with is a creep of the highest order.

Although our couple do meet each other and get together, when they know who each other are, there isn't really a lot of time for them to get to know one another. It doesn't really matter, the chemistry is there and the connection between them doesn't come across as forced or contrived.

Steal My Heart is a fun romance, ultimately satisfying and exactly what I was in the mood for.




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Sunday, 11 August 2019

Wylde Fire - Sarah Robinson

Wylde Fire (100 Proof, #1)Wylde Fire by Sarah Robinson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a three and a half stars rounded up to five stars read. This is the story of Sam Wylde, Tennessee whiskey producer who is out to prove that he is more than his family. Holly Glen has had a crush on him since high school, ten years previously, but Sam never even knew she existed. When they get thrown into one another's paths again they soon find a way that they can help each other and it quickly turns into something far more than a fake relationship.
I really liked both Sam and Holly in this story. Sam is a caring, genuine type of guy and although he's had previous heartache it's not something that completely defines him. Holly is feisty and despite the fact that she has been in love with Sam from afar for years, she isn't a pushover, which is something I always like in this kind of book.
Overall I really enjoyed the romance and I'd be keen to find out more about the other characters in the book. I assume that Sam's business partners will also get their own stories. There were a couple of small things that stopped me from giving this a higher rating. Firstly there were a couple of times that information was repeated unnecessarily. Not just that the author keeps telling us something, but a whole paragraph reproduced almost word for word. There were two examples that I spotted, one being the fact that the distillery was surrounded by a lot of land. When it happened it threw me out of the flow of the story for a second, which was annoying. The other thing that I wasn't completely on board with was that somethings either were glossed over or happened too fast. For example, there was a pretty major event for Holly that wasn't really even mentioned until it was touched on in passing in the epilogue. For me, it would just have added a bit more to the story with things like this actually being part of the book.
I did really enjoy this read and I'd been keen to read the next two when they come out.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Wednesday, 7 August 2019

The Fire God Tour - Michele Sims


The Fire God Tour

About the Book

The Fire God TourTitle: The Fire God Tour Author: Michele Sims Genre: Contemporary Romance, Suspense Miles
Moore is obsessed with fire. He can’t help it—it’s in his genes. He’s also the famous performer Ari, an international hip-hop sensation. There are some negatives that come with fame—death threats and life on the road among them—but there’s also a lot of good: fast cars, fast women, international travel, and more money than he can handle. When Bella Wahlberg joins his team as the chief of marketing, she seems like the antithesis of what he’s looking for, so much so that Miles dubs her Belsa the Ice Queen. It would be unprofessional for them to get together, but more than that, she’s unavailable—and deathly afraid of fire. But as they prepare for The Fire God Tour, Miles can tell something is changing. Is he ready to commit himself to one woman? Can fire and ice come together?    

Author Bio

Michele Sims is the creator of the Moore Family Saga and the Fire God Series. She loves writing hot love stories and women's fiction with multidimensional characters in multigenerational families. She is the recipient of the 2018 RSJ Aspiring Author Award and first runner up in the Introvert Press Poetry Contest for February 2018. She is a member of the LRWA, in Charleston, SC and the From The Heart Romance Writers’ online group. She lives in South Carolina with her husband who has been her soulmate and greatest cheerleader. She is the proud mother of two adult sons and the auntie to many loved ones. When she's not writing, she's trying to remember the importance of exercise, travelling, listening to different genres of music, and observing the wonders of life on this marvellous planet.  

My Review


Links

 Email: michelesims2122@gmail.com 

Tuesday, 6 August 2019

Temptation - Inara Scott

Temptation (Bad Angels, #2)Temptation by Inara Scott
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When I started this book I was in need of something that would lift my spirits and remind me why I enjoy escaping into a book so much. Fortunately, Temptation was just what I was looking for. The book tells the story of Connor, who has been in love with Zoe since he first met her. The only problem is that he's rubbish with relationships and she is a lawyer with the company that deals with his company, which means that she's off-limits. After an accident on an e-scooter Connor and Zoe find themselves spending more and more time together and the attraction is not just one way.
Both Zoe and Connor are great characters. They both have issues with relationships from their past and their upbringing, but in many ways, it is this that makes them perfect for one another. Connor is very sweet and caring, despite thinking that he's not. I have to admit that I do love a caring hero in these kinds of books, so he was onto a winner already. Of course, their issues mean that it's not smooth sailing, but that's what we come to expect and want from these books after all. There was nothing insurmountable and I was left completely satisfied by the end.
The secondary characters are great, particularly Connor's mother and her friends. Who wouldn't love a group of geriatric female physicists who play bridge? This is the second in a series and while I think that the couple from the first book appear, I don't' think it mattered that I hadn't read their story. I also assume that a future couple already has a few sparks flying between them in this one.
This was an enjoyable read and exactly the kind of book that I was looking for. Great stuff.

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Friday, 2 August 2019

Nothing Else But You - Elle Wright

Nothing Else But YouNothing Else But You by Elle Wright (Boston, MA)
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved the idea behind this book. Rather than meeting in person or over the internet as so many people seem to do these days, the main characters join an anonymous letter-writing group. They can't give away any information that identifies them, but of course, this gives them more opportunity to be open and honest than they might otherwise be. Through the course of the letters, they fall for one another and pick up enough clues to track one another down.
I really liked the way that this story played out. Once they meet, things change and it quickly becomes more like a traditional romance. I would say that it perhaps happened a little too quickly and I think more could have been made of the letter writing, although I understand why it wasn't. Even so, I liked this 'old fashioned' approach to it all and it made the instant love/lust when they finally do meet a little bit more believable than it can be in some romance books.
There is a lot more going on in this book, with both of our characters having quite a dramatic back story and life. They work well together and there's certainly plenty of chemistry between them. I'm not sure if this is the start of a series, with more characters meeting this way? Obviously, if that is the case, then it's not likely to be a series in the usual sense as obviously, it's likely to be strangers that meet via letters. Having said that, I did wonder if the single cop that they are friendly with didn't seem quite interested in the idea. I guess that I'll have to wait and see. Overall, this was a good read and I really enjoyed it.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Her Rough Ride - Heather Van Fleet

Her Rough Ride (Red Dragon MC Series, #2)Her Rough Ride by Heather Van Fleet
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the second Red Dragon MC book in the series and the second that I have read. It works as a standalone novel, but this is a series where the previous (and future I assume) characters do feature in some capacity in all of the books.
This time the story focuses on Maya, who has left the world of Motorcycle clubs behind but is in danger. Her uncle wants her to come home for her own safety after the Red Dragon's come under threat from an ex-member and rival club. Slade, a man she had known well before he became a Red Dragon and changed his name is tasked with bringing her home. There's huge chemistry between them, but she doesn't recognise him from before.
The chemistry between the two main characters was good. I thought that Slade/Sebastian was a bit overbearing at times and needed to get over himself a bit, but Maya gave as good as she got. They seemed to be well-matched and I liked the romance that developed between them.
As I mentioned at the start, this does work as a stand-alone novel, but there is an over-arcing storyline that ties the books together. Clearly, there is more to come for the Red Dragon's based on the events in this book and while our main characters do get their happily ever after, things are far from all rosy for the Red Dragons.
I really enjoyed this instalment of the series and would be keen to read the next. I'm not sure as yet who it is likely to feature as there are a couple of candidates, but I think it might possibly be Archer.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Monday, 29 July 2019

Death at The Mariners Hotel - Betty Rowlands

Death at the Mariners Hotel (Sukey Reynolds #8)Death at the Mariners Hotel by Betty Rowlands
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I've been loving these Sukey Reynolds' mysteries. I have to admit though, that it took me a little while to warm to this one. I'm sure that this was in large part, due to the sudden change in Sukey's life. When we last joined her she was working as a scene of crime officer and getting involved with investigating a little bit more than she should have done. She did want to rejoin the police force though and although I expected that she might eventually manage it, I wasn't expecting her to have achieved that in this book. In fact, things had moved on quite a bit, with Sukey now living in Bristol and having completed her probationary period for a different police force than the one she worked for.
Fortunately, once I got into the swing of the story and the change that had taken place, I really enjoyed it and reading about Sukey's new role. I have to admit that this time I didn't really solve the mystery, but this book was less of a puzzle than some of the previous ones.
I am really enjoying this series. I'm not sure where it's going to go next, with the change in Sukey's role and her relationship with Jim. I had assumed that over time that might become more permanent, but he played such a minor role in this one that I think he might be on his way out. I suppose that time will tell where Sukey will end up... I'll be looking forward to finding out.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Monday, 22 July 2019

Colliding Hearts - L.M. Connolly

Colliding hearts (Hearts on Fire, #3)Colliding hearts by L.M. Connolly
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the second in the Hearts on Fire series that I have read. Like the previous one, although this is part of a series, you don't need to have read the others. This time we have the story of Daniel and Rita. Daniel is an extremely rich Texan who owns a construction company, while Rita is the English friend of his sister who is in Texas to show her art. When the two meet and spend time together it soon becomes clear that there is a great deal of chemistry there and they cannot keep apart.
Daniel is commitment-phobic, having been burned in the past in a previous relationship and the two decide that this will just be a fling during Rita's stay in America. Of course, this is a romance novel and it's not long before it becomes clear that there is much more going on beneath the surface.
I enjoyed seeing the development of the relationship between this couple. Daniel was very sweet and caring, which I always enjoy seeing in the male lead in this kind of book. I also like it when the female lead isn't a pushover, which Rita wasn't. She wasn't unnecessarily combative either, which is always enjoyable. This was another good addition to the Hearts on Fire series.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Saturday, 20 July 2019

Murder in the Mill-Race - E.C.R. Lorac

Murder in the Mill-Race (British Library Crime Classics)Murder in the Mill-Race by E.C.R. Lorac
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am really enjoying discovering some new to me authors through this British Library Crime Classics series. Like many of the other books that I've read, I hadn't heard of E.C.R. Lorac before this series (although this is the second of her books that I've now read). I always enjoy a good classic mystery and this one was no exception.
The story is set in a small out of the way village. I suspect that such places are now populated with holiday cottages and outsiders who want to escape to the country. That said, I grew up in a small village and in it, I recognised some of the characteristics of the people who populated this fictional village.
The mystery revolves around the death of a local saintly type, who of course turns out to be far from the image that she has tried to cultivate. There are plenty of potential suspects. I did guess who it was before the end, but I wasn't completely convinced that I was right.
This was a gripping read. I suspect for some people it perhaps moves a little slowly, especially by modern standards, but I enjoy this slower-paced style of mystery from time to time. I don't know if there are plans for many more books in this series, but I'll be reading them. I'd also quite like to collect the hard copies, as I love the covers.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Thursday, 18 July 2019

Review of Risk the Burn - Marnee Blake

Risk the Burn (The Smokejumpers #3)Risk the Burn by Marnee Blake
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the third book in The Smokejumpers series and I think my favourite to date. I've given this 3 1/2 stars rounded up to 4. I enjoy the setting of these books, with the smokejumpers and what they do as an overall background. That said, there was a little less of that in this instalment. I think that it adds an extra and interesting dimension to the firefighters or first responders that often appear in similar books.
I liked both Charlotte and Hunter and I liked the way that their relationship played out. They seemed to have good chemistry and I enjoyed reading about the interaction between the two of them. There were the odd occasions where I just wanted to give them a shake and get them to actually talk, but that can be par for the course in this kind of romance book, to be honest. Perhaps that's part of the joy of them? Knowing that we'd deal with it better?
I am enjoying this series and I think that it is getting better with each one. I'll be interested to see where it goes next.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Midnight's End - Jill Ramsower


Midnight’s End
Jill Ramsower
(The Fae Games, #5)
Publication date: July 2nd 2019
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Sorceress, enchantress, deceiver, murderer—I’ve been called all those and more, some that might make you blush. Lucky for me, I couldn’t care less what people think about me. I’ve had my sights set on one thing for the last thousand years, and that’s all that matters. I’ll do whatever it takes to find the cauldron, even if it means taking on a partner. They call him a knight in shining armor. For me, he’s my golden ticket. He fell into my lap, quite literally, and now he’s going to help me get what I want.
I don’t play particularly well with others, but he’s the best shot I’ve got, so I’ll hop on that train and hope it gets me where I need to go. He thinks he’s going to crack my shell and see what’s on the inside, like maybe there’s a warm gooey center to make up for the hard exterior. He’s in for a world of disappointment. Everything soft and delicate about me became rough and hardened a long time ago. I’m Morgan Le Fay, and I’m the villain in this story.


Author Bio:
Jill is a Texan, born and raised. She manages the hectic social calendars for her three active children and occasionally spends an evening with her dashing husband. Aside from being an author and a mom, she’s an attorney, travel junkie, and voracious reader.

My Review

This is the fifth book in the Fae Games series and takes a bit of a different style to the previous books. While they focused on humans who came into contact with the world of the fae, this time we have to fae people.
In the previous stories, Morgan le Fae has been shown as being the villain of the piece, but this time we have her as the lead female character. It's clear that she has done some terrible things, but it also becomes apparent that there were reasons for her actions. As we learn more of her history, as the story progresses it becomes easier to relate to Morgan. She slowly begins to forgive herself for what she has become.
There are twists and turns in this story and a few surprises. I will admit that I had guessed most of them, but that didn't matter, the whole read was very enjoyable. I think that there might be more to come in this world. Although there was a conclusion here I'm not sure if Merlin has finished or not. He certainly seems to be the one pulling the strings here. I'd recommend reading the whole of this series, although I think that this one may possibly work as a standalone.

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Wednesday, 17 July 2019

Preserving Peaches - Pamela Burford

Preserving Peaches (Jane Delaney Mysteries Book 5)Preserving Peaches by Pamela Burford
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It feels like a long time since I last read a Jane Delaney mystery, I've just had a look and it's been over two years since one came out. It didn't take me long to get back into this fantastic series. The book starts with Jane's 40th Birthday, during the course of the series she's started as slightly older than me and now I seem to have just overtaken her. She stumbles onto a body, the almost mummified body of local problem page writer, Peaches. Obviously, Jane can't help but do a little bit of digging into who killed her, especially after she is asked by two people to look into it, or at least things related to the death.
There are two elements to this great series. Firstly, the murder, obviously and then secondly the romance angle. For too long now, Jane has been hung up on her ex-husband Dom, for reasons that seem a little bit beyond me, when she has the wonderful Martin waiting in the wings. Jane seems to have seen the light, with Dom at least. I don't want to tell you something that might spoil the book for you. So, I'm not going to tell you if I was left satisfied at the end of this book. Although I am really tempted to give more away...
I didn't manage to solve this one sadly. At least not until the very end, although I had one or two ideas. The mystery worked well and kept me guessing, which is always a bonus. The real delight of these books is the humour though. I found myself laughing out loud at some of the things that Jane gets herself involved in. Being a death diva is certainly an interesting and varied role.
I loved this book and really hope that we don't have to wait too long for the next one. I for one, can't wait to see what Jane gets up to next.

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Monday, 15 July 2019

In Skates Trouble - Kate Meader

In Skates Trouble (Chicago Rebels, #0.5)In Skates Trouble by Kate Meader
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the intro to a series that was released a few years ago now. I believe that it originally appeared as part of an anthology, but is now available as this novella. I haven't read any of the other books in the series, but I have recently read the first book in a spin-off series, Good Guy. I was interested to come back to this first series, after reading that.
This is a fairly quick read. Actually, I read it in one day, it would have been one sitting but some of us do have work to do, sadly. The story centres around divorcee Addison, who is in the process of setting up a lingerie business and hockey player Ford. What I did particularly like about these two is that unlike the pairings you often get in romance books, Addison was older than Ford and had been married before. It's such a refreshing change to not have the young virgin or fairly inexperienced girl who gets taught the ways of love by an older, more experienced man.
We get straight into the action, so to speak, when Ford overhears Addison and her friends discussing disappointing sexual partners. Before they even meet properly, the couple is enjoying one another's company, in more ways than one. I quite liked the way that that was done, it was unusual and entertaining. With this being a novella, getting to the action quickly was always going to be important.
Addison and Ford worked for me as a couple and there was certainly chemistry there. It's always difficult with a shorter story, as some things can be a bit rushed, but this wasn't too much of an issue here. It also set the series up well, which is what I assume the whole point was.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Death under the Apple Tree - Betty Rowlands

Death under the Apple Tree (Sukey Reynolds, #7)Death under the Apple Tree by Betty Rowlands
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The only problem with this Sukey Reynolds series is that I am running out of ways to say how much I am enjoying them. Not that that is going to stop me from writing these reviews or reading the books for that matter. There is something that is just so enjoyable about the series. The characters of course help. Over the course of the previous six books, we've seen Sukey's son Gus turn from a young teenager to a young man who is off to University in this book. Her relationship with Jim Castle has rumbled along quietly, with moments of passion for our amateur detective in-between the odd bout of disapproval for her snooping ways. I did wonder if they were going to move to a more permanent arrangement now that Gus is away at university, but that doesn't seem to have happened as yet.
The mystery this time was not one that I was able to solve. Sometimes I seem to get there long before Sukey has a clue, but this time I was completely in the dark. The important thing with a murder mystery for me isn't my ability to solve it or not, but really how well it works and how easy the solution is. Fortunately, in this series, the mystery is believable and never too obvious.
I'm keen to read the next book and find out what is in store for Sukey. Will she finally become a detective for real? Will Jim finally be willing to be more open about their relationship? Will Gus become so skilled through his university course that he can solve all of the mysteries for them? I can't wait to find out.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.


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Friday, 12 July 2019

Million Dollar Marriage - Katy Evans

Million Dollar Marriage (Million Dollar, #2)Million Dollar Marriage by Katy Evans
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a fun and entertaining story this was. Not only was it a cute love story with plenty of heat and steam, but there was also great subtle humour that ran through the book.
The couple who feature in the story, Penelope and Luke are complete opposites. Forced together, in more ways than one, in the name of a reality tv show, they have to overcome their prejudices and work together in order to will a million dollars. This was a fun and interesting take on the opposites attract and enemies to lovers themes. I enjoyed the chemistry between the two lead characters. It did take a little while for Penelope to relax and trust Luke, but I liked the way that they began to see the best in each other as the story progressed.
I thought the idea of having the story set as part of a reality tv show was great. It does seem like the kind of crazy thing that they have people doing all in the name of entertainment. I'm not entirely convinced that either Penelope or Luke would be convinced to take part in one. I'm not sure either that they would be a couple in real life, but in books like this, that really doesn't matter. For me, the chemistry worked and I enjoyed seeing them discover just how right they were for one another and the way that they each saw things in the other that they themselves hadn't realised.
I really enjoyed this book. I haven't read the first in the series, but I'd be keen to go back and check it out. This book works fine as a standalone and while I think the previous characters were mentioned, it wasn't something that impacted my enjoyment.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Thursday, 11 July 2019

Saint - Chantal Fernando

Saint (Knights of Fury, #1)Saint by Chantal Fernando
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Saint is the first in a new series set in a Motorbike club known as the Knights of Fury. I have to admit that I didn't know that I would enjoy MC set books, but I've read quite a few now and on the whole, I do enjoy them.
This book tells the story of Skylar, who was raised, at least for a time, as part of a Motor Cycle club, until a huge bust-up between her mother and stepdad resulted in them leaving never to see the men in the club again. Skylar as a teenager had a crush on one of the guys in the club, Saint, who is five years older than her. Once she's all grown up, they meet again and she falls in love with him properly.
On the whole, I enjoyed this book. In all honesty, I did think that Saint's character was a little flat. He quickly falls for Skylar, but there's almost something just missing from him. I don't know if it's because we see everything from Skylar's point of view rather than his? Skylar is a little immature. She's supposed to be 21 and considered quite with it and tough, but the way that she reacts to some things is quite childish. Perhaps that's because she has been raised by an awful mother and had a very dysfunctional childhood? I'm not sure.
This was an entertaining read and I'd be happy to read more about the Kights of Fury. I suspect that I know who will be the couple in the next book.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Good Guy - Kate Meader

Good Guy (Rookie Rebels, #1)Good Guy by Kate Meader
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I believe that this book links to two other series by Kate Meader while at the same time being the start of a new series. I haven't read anything by Meader before, but this one certainly made me interested to go back and try the other books.
This book follows the 'in love with my best friend's woman and now he's dead' theme. I have come across this theme before a couple of times, but this was a fresh take on it. That combined with the good writing, likeable characters and the additional slant of Women working in a male-dominated world, made this a great read.
I liked both Levi and Jordan and their romance and relationship was believable and had plenty of chemistry. Levi really is the good guy, almost too good to be true at times, but he doesn't believe it himself.
Although Jordan's husband, who also happens to have been Levi's best friend, does cast a shadow between them, it isn't all that is important in this story. In many ways, I enjoyed the woman reporter storyline even more. Jordan is a little bit unwilling to push too hard and is accepting at times, but as we all know, that often is the reality of being a woman in that kind of environment. Even the most confident and forceful of us are conditioned to accept far too much.
This was a good read with a satisfying romance element and a thought-provoking look at women and equality.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Tuesday, 9 July 2019

Death on a Summer Morning - Betty Rowlands

Death on a Summer Morning: An absolutely gripping cozy mystery novel (A Sukey Reynolds Mystery Book 6)Death on a Summer Morning: An absolutely gripping cozy mystery novel by Betty Rowlands
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I had been a little concerned that as these books progressed, Sukey's going against her boyfriend and the police, in general, to investigate on her own might get a little much. Surely someone can't just keep doing that. Fortunately, in this instalment at least, that little issue has been dealt with to some extent. While Sukey does get involved in her own investigations again in this book, it's really quite reluctantly and she does, on more than one occasion try to involve Jim with her thoughts and ideas.
I do enjoy these mysteries. Sukey is a very likeable character and I enjoy reading about her attempts to get to the bottom of various mysteries. This time she gets drawn in after the seemingly accidental death of a man, while his fiance and daughter won't accept that he wasn't murdered. Sukey manages to solve at least part of the mystery, but not get to the bottom of things completely. (Although I did this time.)
I'm looking forward to the next in this series. I am really enjoying them.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.


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Sunday, 7 July 2019

Control Freak - Brianna Hale

Control FreakControl Freak by Brianna Hale
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Years ago I used to have a cartoon strip that I had cut out of the paper at school. It was about a girl who walked around on her head and couldn't find love, then she met a man who walked on his head too. I always liked the idea that although you might not be perfect for everyone, there's someone out there that's perfect for you. In many ways, that is the theme of this book.
I do feel as though I need to say a couple of things at the start. Firstly, while this is a book with a heavily sexual element, in fact, a heavy BDSM element (which should be no surprise if you look at the title and the cover) that's not really what it is all about. Often this type of book is pure escapism and fantasy, but that's not really the case here. Our lead female character, Lacey, is anorexic or recovering from anorexia. Much of the storyline focuses on her attempts to deal with the hold that it has over her and the way that it controls her life. Stian offers her a different type of control and structure that helps her to deal with her issues.
I am often quite sceptical about books where there is a huge age difference and seemingly a difference in power between the two characters, but I'm not sure that that is the case here. At the same time, I'm not totally sure that it isn't either. Stian does help Lacey with her demons, but he isn't there to cure her, they just are right for one another in many ways.
For me, much of this book raised as many questions as it answered and while I loved every second of it, I'm left thinking about it long after the close of the last chapter. I found it well written, gripping and ultimately hugely satisfying.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Saturday, 6 July 2019

The Wilderness Within - Emma Castle

A Wilderness Within (Unlikely Heroes #2)A Wilderness Within by Emma Castle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

For some reason, I've read quite a few the world is falling apart, dystopian future novels recently. This one is a little different, as society hasn't broken down simply because we're all greedy and evil and politicians are corrupt, but instead, an awful virus has wiped out a huge amount of people.
Our two heroes, Caroline and Lincoln, are survivors. Naturally immune to this hideous sickness and trying desperately to survive. While Lincoln has years of military training to fall back on and keep him alive, Caroline seems to have managed with little more than hope and the desire to stay alive. Once they meet, she gives Lincoln a reason to want to live and survive. She becomes his reason for keeping going.
While this is a romance in some ways it isn't a traditional romance. I don't think that is entirely down to the setting, although that plays a part. What makes a difference here is that it doesn't follow the well-trodden path of two people meet, something pulls them apart (often a misunderstanding) and then they get back together and live happily ever after. That's not to say that if romance is your thing you won't find plenty here to put a smile on your face, but rather that it's a refreshing change to have a romance where the love element is a major part of the story, but it isn't all to it. The relationship between the couple in many ways seems more natural and less contrived as can often happen in this kind of books.
I really enjoyed this book. The storyline was gripping and exciting as we followed Caroline and Lincoln in their attempts to survive and find their way to other survivors. While this is a book that tells the story of fear, the worst of human behaviour, loss and destruction it is also a book about hope, love and the best in humankind.

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Friday, 5 July 2019

Under the Skin - Zara West


Under the Skin
Zara West
Publication date: June 6th 2019
Genres: Adult, Romance, Thriller
A billionaire bridge builder
A gifted thief
A ruthless criminal
Can he save her before it’s too late?










Author Bio:
Zara West loves all things adventurous and heart-stopping as long as they lead to true love. Born in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Zara spends winters in New York where the streets hum with life, summers in the Maritimes where the sea can be cruel, and the rest of the year anywhere inspiration for tales of suspense, mystery, and romance are plentiful.
An accomplished artist by training and passion, she brings a love of art to every book she writes. When not marooned on an island or chasing after Greek shepherds, Zara tends her organic herb garden, collects hats and cats, and whips up ethnic dishes for friends and family. Learn more at http://www.zarawestsuspense.com

My Review 

There was a lot to like about this book. With its look at homelessness, illegal immigrants, the way that women who are vulnerable are treated and the like, there was a great deal to this story. While one part of our couple, Lena, is faced with being at the whim of all kinds of unpleasant people, struggling to keep her families head above water, Mic has been there but managed to escape.

This is the fourth in the series and having not read the other books, I haven't got any knowledge of the characters that pop in this book that featured in the previous stories. I don't know if those books dealt with such meaty topics as this, but it certainly added to the storyline here. I don't think that it was essential to have read the previous books, I don't think that my enjoyment was affected by having not read them.

On the whole, I enjoyed the storyline and the two main characters were likeable. Unfortunately, for me, I didn't really feel the chemistry between Mic and Lena. I'm not sure if the rest of things that happened actually caused that to be buried somehow, or if it was something else. Their relationship seemed to jump quite a bit for me and not in a totally believable way. It was a shame, as there was a great deal of potential here and I think that the homelessness aspect added a really interesting dimension to the story.

Overall, this was a good read. The plight of the homeless and illegal immigrants added an interesting and thought-provoking element to the book.

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Thursday, 4 July 2019

Death at Ivy House - Betty Rowlands

Death at Ivy House: An utterly gripping English cozy mystery (A Sukey Reynolds Mystery Book 5)Death at Ivy House: An utterly gripping English cozy mystery by Betty Rowlands
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Five books into the Sukey Reynolds series and I'm really enjoying this scene of crime officer who spends a little too much time investigating things herself. Although unlike some amateur detectives, Sukey has a reason to be involved in the crimes that she investigates, really she shouldn't be looking into them the way that she does. Fortunately for us, the fact that she ignores that and does get involved makes for a good read.
Again with this book, we know a little bit more than Sukey and her detective boyfriend Jim do. If you haven't read any of this series, I should perhaps mention that while Sukey is romantically involved with the lead detective on most of the mysteries that she gets involved in, it isn't really with his blessing, or often even his knowledge. She does seem to have an uncanny knack for getting to the bottom of things.
This was an enjoyable read. The plot did have quite a few twists, turns and players which made me a little confused. I have to admit though, that despite having the extra knowledge to the detectives, I didn't guess who done it until it was revealed.
I'm loving this series and will be reading the next very shortly. If you're looking for a good detective story that itsn't too dark, but doesn't have that frothy rubbish that you often get with so-called 'cosy' mysteries, then this may well be one for you.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.


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Wednesday, 3 July 2019

She's a Spitfire - Chloe Liese


She’s a Spitfire
Chloe Liese
(Tough Love #2)
Publication date: June 24th 2019
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
One fiery-haired, sexy scientist finds her perfect complement in a dark and handsome soccer star. Opposites attract, and they’ve got chemistry that’s explosive—literally.
Physics calls it entropy. Philosophy calls it Murphy’s Law: If something can go wrong, eventually it will. Professionally and personally speaking, Zed’s familiar with the principle. After a decade of trying to alter the atomic makeup of the mafia from its nucleus, now he’s set on leaving The Life and pursuing his heart. Problem is, the sassy, hot-headed spitfire he can’t quit is meddling in his slow burn escape plan, and turning it into full-on combustion.
Not to mention, Nairne’s got a painful history she won’t talk about and more secrets than she has lab instruments—which is really saying something. In an ideal world, the bad boy footballer would follow the brainy beauty overseas and they’d live happily ever after. But Murphy’s Law is proven true, as Zed finds his world imploding and his escape plan foiled. These enemies turned lovers end up discovering how costly it can be to meet the right person at the wrong time.
A present he can’t escape.
A past she can’t forget.
A future they won’t stop fighting for.
They say all’s fair in love…and war.
Book Two in the Tough Love Series—an enemies to lovers, suspenseful romance, full of sexy Italians, feisty heroines, globe-trotting action, and an ending that’ll both satisfy you and leave you ready for more!


Author Bio:
Chloe’s always been a sucker for a suspenseful steamy romance, ever since she managed to find the one saucy mystery series hiding in her high school’s prim little library. Nothing drives her crazier than a story that cranks up the heat, then closes the door on the reader’s face, so don’t read her books if you don’t want to know what actually happens when the lights fade to black…
When she’s not writing, Chloe’s busy reading books of all genres, rereading Harry Potter (which she can’t help but make her characters similarly obsessed over), and playing catch-up with her bad@$$ little girls. She’s also been known to scramble around the pitch for a pick-up soccer match and run along the river while dreaming up her next book.

My Review 

This is the second book in the Tough Love trilogy, in some cases, you can read books that form part of a series as stand-alone stories but with these books, you really need to read He's A Brute first. 
This second book picks up from more or less where the first one left off. Since they first met, the relationship between Zed and Nairne has intensified. Not physically, it was pretty intense in that way, to begin with, but their feelings have grown and the idea of being a short term partnership is clearly not going to work any more.
I'm really enjoying reading about both Zed and Nairne. I like their relationship and the way that their characters complement one another. It does appear that they might be too headstrong and stubborn to work, but if anything, that's what makes them work so well.
There's a lot for them both to deal with in this book. I did wonder if it would leave anything for book three, although something that happened towards the end of this book set that up. I do like the way that Nairne's disability is portrayed and the way that she copes with it.
I'm interested to see what will happen next for this couple. I think they deserve their happily ever after, that I assume they are going to get.

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