Review: Cross Breed by Lora Leigh

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Fans of #1 New York Times bestselling author Lora Leigh’s scorching Breed series first met Cassie as a little girl in Elizabeth’s Wolf. Now Cassie has finally come into her own as a young woman, and she’s about to discover the one she is destined for–but it is unclear whether her fate is to be mated for life, or marked for death…

The Breeds are humans altered before conception with the DNA of the predators of the earth. But although they all carry the genetic material of beasts within them, Cassandra Sinclair stands apart. A unique mix of wolf, coyote and human, she is revered by many–but preyed upon by others. She is fiercely protected by her community…but no one manages to stop her when she slips away one day to offer her body in exchange for her sister’s safety.

The man she succumbs to surprises her by unleashing her inner animal in ways she never dreamed possible–and provokes her deep, furious rage. To Cassie’s shock, he is the mate she has long awaited. She may never be able to forgive his deception. Still, as dangerous enemies track her, and as the threat of all-out war between Breeds and the humans who despise them hovers in the air, they must join forces and hold fast to each other.

But the passionate union between them holds a potential that could change the world–and some will do anything to stop it…

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Cross Breed by Lora Leigh is an intense paranormal romance tale. I was sucked into the whole Breed and Human world. Scientists took children away from their families only to use their embryos for creating half humans and half animals. Taking sperm from coyotes and wolves the government thought they could create an army to use as a weapon against others. Only it backfired on them in ways they did not expect. Eventually, enough human families had missing family members used and killed for these experimentations. The offspring were not looked at as monsters by the majority of the humans. But that did not mean that others were not disgusted with the Breeds and hybrids.

A young woman, Cassie, is overpowered by the feelings of lust and lack of fear towards a man who first aimed to kill her. He knew she was his mate when he saw her at eighteen. But he never went to claim her until 6-years later. One challenge between, and a night of exotic passion lead to distrust and anger. No matter the danger towards them both, their mating heat keeps increasing and only they can help each other survive its brutal wave.

Dog, aka Cain, is a coyote Breed. But he lets the council who created him think he’s undercover for them. Dog wants to get the info to take them out and destroy them. The council are the ones responsible for creating the Breeds and Hybrids like himself. Anger and loss is all Dog knew until his mate. Cassie gives him hope and tears his world upside down…but he’ll do everything in his power to keep her alive and with him.

Lora Leigh created a world full of drama, risks, and heat. I felt the instant attraction between both protagonists. They reeled me in deep. The plot is full of adult language from time to time, some fighting but not graphic, and a little bit of BDSM is inside the sex scenes. I recommend this paranormal romance to all adults.

Review: When the Lights Go Out by Mary Kubica

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

A woman is forced to question her own identity in this riveting and emotionally charged thriller by the blockbuster bestselling author of The Good Girl, Mary Kubica. 

Jessie Sloane is on the path to rebuilding her life after years of caring for her ailing mother. She rents a new apartment and applies for college. But when the college informs her that her social security number has raised a red flag, Jessie discovers a shocking detail that causes her to doubt everything she’s ever known.

Finding herself suddenly at the center of a bizarre mystery, Jessie tumbles down a rabbit hole, which is only exacerbated by grief and a relentless lack of sleep. As days pass and the insomnia worsens, it plays with Jessie’s mind. Her judgment is blurred, her thoughts are hampered by fatigue. Jessie begins to see things until she can no longer tell the difference between what’s real and what she’s only imagined.

Meanwhile, twenty years earlier and two hundred and fifty miles away, another woman’s split-second decision may hold the key to Jessie’s secret past. Has Jessie’s whole life been a lie or have her delusions gotten the best of her?

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

When the Lights Go Out by Mary Kubica is a very depressing yet intense novel. Inside, I followed a young woman’s journey through nightmares. She has been in the hospital at her mom’s side and won’t sleep until her mom gets better or passes away. The doctor tried to tell Jessie to get some sleep, but she won’t listen. I felt her pain and her tiredness. Her confusion and pain about finding her father and her mom’s cancer was horrifying. Jessie could not tell apart reality from nightmare. I could not tell the difference until the ending…that’s when all became clear. Grief, loss, and secrets are explored in this novel. I cried a lot when I read this story. Jessie did want her mom to die from cancer. She kept hoping she would get better. Then, there was the fact that Jessie never knew her own father. Mary Kubica never revealed that secret. But the man that should have been her father became one to her while her mom was passing away from her cancer. The death was slow…and when the last moment came, it sped by quickly. My heart broke. Overall, this was intriguing, dark, and heartbreaking.

 

Review: The Ancient Nine by Ian Smith, M.D.

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Spencer Collins thinks his life at Harvard will be all about basketball and pre-med; hard workouts and grinding work in class. The friends he’s made when he hits the storied ivy-clad campus from a very different life in urban Chicago are a happy bonus. But Spencer is about to be introduced to the most mysterious inner sanctum of the inner sanctum: to his surprise, he’s in the running to be “punched” for one of Harvard’s elite final clubs.

The Delphic Club is known as “the Gas” for its crest of three gas-lit flames, and as Spencer is considered for membership, he’s plunged not only into the secret world of male privilege that the Gas represents, but also into a century-old club mystery. Because at the heart of the Delphic, secured deep inside its guarded mansion club, is another secret society: a shadowy group of powerful men known as The Ancient Nine.

Who are The Ancient Nine? And why is Spencer—along with his best friend Dalton Winthrop—summoned to the deathbed of Dalton’s uncle just as Spencer is being punched for the club? What does the lore about a missing page from one of Harvard’s most historic books mean? And how does it connect to religion, murder, and to the King James Bible, if not to King James himself?

The Ancient Nine is both a coming of age novel and a swiftly plotted story that lets readers into the ultimate of closed worlds with all of its dark historical secrets and unyielding power.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Ancient Nine by Ian Smith, M.D. is one very interesting mystery. A young man who appears to be the average guy, is soon chasing after clues to solve a disappearance. From there, it leads to a lot of intriguing connections like the Nazis and a college club society that leaves behind more questions than answers. Dark, edgy, and entertaining, I got lost within this novel. Ian Smith’s main protagonist was easy to relate to and felt real. The plot was steady. Overall, I recommend this book full of secrets to all readers.

Review: Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Most men can’t handle Hazel. But her best friend Josh isn’t most men. Don’t miss New York Times bestselling author Christina Lauren’s new novel about two people who are definitely not dating…no matter how often they end up in bed together.

Hazel Camille Bradford knows she’s a lot to take—and frankly, most men aren’t up to the challenge. If her army of pets and thrill for the absurd don’t send them running, her lack of filter means she’ll say exactly the wrong thing in a delicate moment. Their loss. She’s a good soul in search of honest fun.

Josh Im has known Hazel since college, where her zany playfulness proved completely incompatible with his mellow restraint. From the first night they met—when she gracelessly threw up on his shoes—to when she sent him an unintelligible email while in a post-surgical haze, Josh has always thought of Hazel more as a spectacle than a peer. But now, ten years later, after a cheating girlfriend has turned his life upside down, going out with Hazel is a breath of fresh air.

Not that Josh and Hazel date. At least, not each other. Because setting each other up on progressively terrible double blind dates means there’s nothing between them…right?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren is the best contemporary fiction novel I have read in a long time. At first, looking at the cover, I thought it was be okay. But it proved me wrong on so many levels. The novel was out of this world good. Stunning, engaging, heartfelt, and well-written…It was super easy to get lost within Hazel’s and Josh’s world. Both were so interesting, that I couldn’t stop reading. I had to know more about both of them. Hazel is the typical ordinary girl who felt like a loser due to her lack of trouble. She is always having some kind of embarrassing thing happen to her. I felt a deep connection to Hazel. She’s full of life. Funny, real, and entertaining to be around…while Josh was kind, clever, and charming. Two completely opposite people coming together in unexpected ways. I loved following their story. Overall, I would recommend it to readers worldwide.

Review: One More Moment by Samantha Chase

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Julian Grayson is taking a break
…from his cheating fiancée
…from his band
…from his life in the spotlight

Charlotte Clark is devoted to her work
…to save the world
…to help the homeless
…to get a broken man back on his feet

When Charlotte Clark offers to pay for Julian Grayson’s coffee, the world-famous drummer assumes she wants something from him. But Charlotte has no idea who he is, and Julian can’t resist keeping up the charade—being incognito is a novelty and a relief. He’ll have to tell her…eventually. But as Charlotte cheerfully undertakes to transform his life, Julian realizes there’s something about her that gives him what he hasn’t felt in years: hope.

Shaughnessy Brothers: Band on the Run Series:
One More Kiss (Book 1)
One More Promise (Book 2)
One More Moment (Book 3)

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

One More Moment by Samantha Chase is the best novel yet in this Band on the Run series. I could not tear my gaze away from the pages. Heat plus, raw emotions, and flaws that make it super easy to connect with the characters, make this a must read. Inside, is a famous rock musician who was badly burned. His ex burned him repeatedly and broke his pride. Julien is so full of anger that his character had this heavy weight constantly keeping him from being happy. Everyone tells him what and how he should live. He’s not ready to let go of his anger. That was until he met, a beautiful kind hearted woman. Charlotte has a way of stunning the drummer. He expects her to ask him for something. Yet she continuously proved she wanted nothing more than to help him. Julien needs to let lose his anger and face his past. Otherwise, his present happiness won’t be his future. And Julien wants Charlotte in his future more than he knows.

Once more, Samantha Chase has created a masterpiece. One that everyone can relate to…as well as remembering way after the last page is read. The characters made me fall in love and root for their happiness. Julien was a stubborn man. That made his fight tougher and more realistic. I liked how he was an average joe, who looked good, and had  a heart of gold despite his wealth and music talent. Charlotte was just an ordinary woman helping the homeless finds jobs. She complimented Julien and was his light to his darkness. Both were strong and independent characters. I cried for Julien’s pain, I laughed at how ridiculous Julien’s jealousy was, and I melted when they had their good moments. I cannot read a book by this writer without my heart and soul getting attached every damn time. Overall, I highly recommend this sexy as hell contemporary romance to all.

 

Review: Dagger’s Edge by Lora Leigh

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

#1 bestselling author Lora Leigh is back–with a vengeance–in her latest novel of passion and intrigue, Dagger’s Edge, featuring the men of Brute Force. 

Ivan Resnova wants nothing more than to escape his hard, brutal past. Starting over is not so easy once you’ve been a powerful crime boss but now, instead of being punished for his alleged crimes, Ivan fears that the one woman he can’t forget is in danger of paying the price.

Crimsyn “Syn” Delaney thought the danger she’d faced was over, and that she could resume her life. She never imagined it would return with a vengeance and throw her back into Ivan’s world. But when an attempt is made on her life, she needs Ivan more than ever to keep her safe–even if she is in danger of falling deeply and dangerously in love. . .

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

Dagger’s Edge by Lora Leigh is one hell of a romantic suspense novel. Dark and intense like J.T. Ellison’s books yet hot and steamy like that of Lynsay Sand’s books. I could not tear my eyes away from this read. It was so intense, dark, and sexy. The characters were on edge constantly. Danger hung in the air on every page. One pair also had to battle their raw lust and love for each other until it exploded. Their lives were at risk and the depth to which they went to stay alive was amazing. Lora Leigh did not disappoint. Her words created vivid scenes and plenty of action to keep myself entertained. Overall, I highly recommend this epic romance to all.

Review: Don’t Look Back by Dawn Ryder

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

In DON’T LOOK BACK by Dawn Ryer, she is the only woman worth fighting – or dying – for…

Shadow Ops Agent Thais Sinclair has sworn off falling in love for good. It’s what’s kept her calculated, steady, and on-task in a world dominated by men. She needs nothing and no one but her own wits and strength to guide her. But when she’s slated to shadow the one man who could reveal their entire operation, all bets are off.

Dunn Bateson, illegitimate son of a Southern debutante, has always had to fight harder than the rest to get what he wants. Now, the last thing he needs is Thais following his every move. She is so strong, sly, seductive. . . No woman has ever captivated him so completely. Thais may only have room for her mission in her heart, but is Dunn up to the challenge of showing her that she’s worth every risk he is willing to take?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Don’t Look Back by Dawn Ryder is a hot as hell romantic suspense novel. I love the characters. Thais and Dunn make the perfect pair. Both are tough, smart, and willing to take risks. Only Thais is willing to risk her life for her career. Dunn will not sit back and watch the woman her cares about get hurt. Dunn has issues but he’s so attracted to Thais he can’t stop thinking about her. Thais drives Dunn crazy by teasing him. Both are playing with fire. Thais is now in jeopardy due to the bad guys making her look like a murderer. A warrant is out for her and both her team and Dunn are working to keep her alive. The fun banters between Dunn and Thais is charming, intense, and sexy. These pages are smoking in humor, action, and danger. This one one romance book that I recommend to all readers. Dawn Ryder does not disappoint.

Review: Cowboy, Cross My Heart by Donna Grant

Cowboy, Cross My Heart

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author Donna Grant takes you deep inside the Texas rodeo scene, where danger and desire ride side by side. . .

Naomi Pierce isn’t the type to let a cowboy sweep her off feet. It’s not her first rodeo, after all. But when she returns to her Texas hometown, she can’t help but be swept up again in the rough-and-tumble world of hard-riding, bronco-busting good-ol’-boys she loved as a girl. She might be here to photograph her Rodeo Queen best friend. But it’s one fine-looking cowboy who really captures her eye…

Brice Harper is all man, all muscle, and all heart. From the moment he rides into the stadium, he can’t help but notice the beautiful stranger with a camera watching him from the stands. It doesn’t take a zoom lens to see the sparks of instant attraction. But things really heat up when he meets Naomi up-close–and he discovers that someone is stalking her friend. Brice wouldn’t be any kind of cowboy if he didn’t offer to help the ladies out. But can the rough rider keep this spirited shutterbug out of danger–without risking his heart?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Cowboy, Cross My Heart by Donna Grant is a strong read. There are issues of sexual harassment, rape, and unlawful men abusing their power status. The emotional journey was a roller-coaster ride. There were just as many ups as there were downs. I cried for the women being abused by men who should have been trusted. It was sickening reading how a strong character broke into a frightened women for her life. Until her best friend came back to visit her and start investigating into what was happening…the young lady would have been drowning in a miserable life. Their friendship was unbreakable and held them together. The men, aka the cowboys, who came to the rescue made my heart melt multiple times. I fell in love with each cowboy who swore to protect the women and their family. Also, the theme of family was strong here. It showed how one family who went through abandonment survived. Their love and support for each other made me smile. Their were parts that were funny, charming, and romantic as hell. Other parts were intense, dangerous, and scary. Donna Grant provided a lot of action-packed scenes. This made the contemporary romance novel a quick read. I loved it. Overall, I would highly recommend this title to all readers. Plus, it provided an inspiration for women to stand up for themselves.

Review: Sister of Mine by Laurie Petrou

Sister of Mine

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

A debut novel of domestic suspense in the vein of Liane Moriarty, Shari Lapena and Claire Douglas about two sisters bound together by a murder

Penny and Hattie have always only had each other—their father left long ago and their mother died in a sudden tragic accident. Penny has always watched out for Hattie, even when she felt usurped by her younger, more vivacious sibling. When Penny’s marriage turns sour and her once-charming husband becomes controlling and abusive, who does she turn to for help but Hattie? An unguarded cigarette, helped along by a few conveniently lit matches and some sleeping pills, creates a deadly fire that frees Penny from an unimaginable life, but not without a cost. The weight of their secret binds the two sisters together, for better or worse. When a new man enters their lives, the twists deepen and the secrets compound. Meanwhile, incidents of arson begin to break out locally and the detective who investigated the death of Penny’s husband develops renewed interest in the case, threatening to unravel all their secrets.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Sister of Mine by Laurie Petrou is a haunting yet intense journey. Two sisters who are close end up with a deadly secret. One that can shatter their bond forever or keep it closer. The story consumed me. The emotional bond between Hattie and Penny made me cry. Penny suffered so much only to fall further away from everything. It felt terrible knowing that disaster was hanging over them constantly. Fear of their secret breaking out…then, to end up having their lives separated and utterly destroyed. It broke my heart to know how it ended for Penny. I had hoped for so much more for her. Penny was weak in the beginning yet became a strong woman in the end. Her life felt like it was over before it could even blossom. There’s nothing greater than two sisters who bond together…Overall, this mystery was good. I recommend it to others who love a dark and gripping story.

 

Review: The Feed by Nick Clark Windo

The Feed

 

 

 

 

Synopsis: 

Set in a post-apocalyptic world as unique and vividly imagined as those of Mad Max and The Girl with All the Gifts, a startling and timely debut that explores what it is to be human and what it truly means to be connected in the digital age.

IT MAKES US. IT DESTROYS US. NOW WE MUST LEARN TO LIVE WITHOUT IT.

The Feed is accessible everywhere, by everyone, at any time. It instantaneously links us to all information and global events as they break. Every interaction, every emotion, every image can be shared through it; it is the essential tool everyone relies on to know and understand the thoughts and feelings of partners, parents, friends, children, colleagues, bosses, employees . . . in fact, of anyone and everyone else in the world.

Tom and Kate use the Feed, but Tom has resisted its addiction, which makes him suspect to his family. After all, his father created it. But that opposition to constant connection serves Tom and Kate well when the Feed collapses after a horrific tragedy shatters the world as they know it.

The Feed’s collapse, taking modern society with it, leaves people scavenging to survive. Finding food is truly a matter of life and death. Minor ailments, previously treatable, now kill. And while the collapse has demolished the trappings of the modern world, it has also eroded trust. In a world where survival of the fittest is a way of life, there is no one to depend upon except yourself . . . and maybe even that is no longer true.

Tom and Kate have managed to protect themselves and their family. But then their six-year-old daughter, Bea, goes missing. Who has taken her? How do you begin to look for someone in a world without technology? And what happens when you can no longer even be certain that the people you love are really who they claim to be?

Rating: 3-stars

Review:

The Feed by Nick Clark Windo is emotional dystopian story. Imagine the world as you know, being connected to the internet. Everything is controlled by what humans do on this internet, aka The Feed. Humans are the source of energy for the feed. Apparently, none of the characters or humans could survive without the Internet. It was needed just a highly as the air required for one’s lungs. Take the internet away and society was doomed. But was it already doomed before it collapsed?

So, this story explores the depth in which society relies and on lives on The Feed. An internet thing that keeps everyone and everything going. It crashes and everyone falls apart. Destruction, chaos, and war among individuals who once loved each other…are depicted on these pages. I couldn’t find a connection to the characters. Their world was confusing and dark. The world really was obsessed with The Feed, if they could not learn to live without it.  This made me wonder if our society would go this extreme one day. Absolutely, scary fact to think about…but it left me wondering. Other than the couple who loss their daughter the story felt flat and repetitive. It did not capture my interest the way I thought it would have. I was expecting for a more realistic doom day relating to technology and society. Some of the fictional twists, just did not make sense. Overall, The Feed was okay but not the best.

Review: Paper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin

Paper Ghosts

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Carl Louis Feldman is an old man who was once a celebrated photographer. That was before he was tried for the murder of a young woman and acquitted. before his admission to a care home for dementia. Now his daughter has come to see him, to take him on a trip. Only she’s not his daughter and, if she has her way, he’s not coming back . . .

Because Carl’s past has finally caught up with him. The young woman driving the car is convinced her passenger is guilty, and that he’s killed, other young women. Including her sister Rachel. Now they’re following the trail of his photographs, his clues, his alleged crimes. To see if he remembers any of it. Confesses to any of it. To discover what really happened to Rachel. Has Carl truly forgotten what he did or is he just pretending? Perhaps he’s guilty of nothing and she’s the liar. Either way in driving him into the Texan wilderness she’s taking a terrible risk. For if Carl really is a serial killer, she’s alone in the most dangerous place of all . . .

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Paper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin is a frightening thriller. A young girl looses her sister to a murderer. But no one knows who killed her. The young girl girl, now a grown woman, is desperate to find answers. She believes an older man, a photographer with dementia, is the killer. Yet, nothing fits. She goes a long way out to set-up an adventure to help the old man remember details. The longer she’s with him, the more she’s not sure if he’s really forgetting or just playing her. Traveling a lone with a possible murderer is the craziest thing ever. However, Grace is willing to do it. The plot was steady. Sometimes slow. It felt like the who dun it was dragged out so much that finding the real killer was lost. I am still left questioning everything that I just read. The ending to me, was unsatisfactory. It left more things open than closed. I wanted to know all the answers. Only questions kept popping up instead. Overall, it was creepy and strange.

Review: The Hunger by Alma Katsu

The Hunger

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Evil is invisible, and it is everywhere.

Tamsen Donner must be a witch. That is the only way to explain the series of misfortunes that have plagued the wagon train known as the Donner Party. Depleted rations, bitter quarrels, and the mysterious death of a little boy have driven the pioneers to the brink of madness. They cannot escape the feeling that someone–or something–is stalking them. Whether it was a curse from the beautiful Tamsen, the choice to follow a disastrous experimental route West, or just plain bad luck–the 90 men, women, and children of the Donner Party are at the brink of one of the deadliest and most disastrous western adventures in American history.

While the ill-fated group struggles to survive in the treacherous mountain conditions–searing heat that turns the sand into bubbling stew; snows that freeze the oxen where they stand–evil begins to grow around them, and within them. As members of the party begin to disappear, they must ask themselves “What if there is something waiting in the mountains? Something disturbing and diseased…and very hungry?”

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Hunger by Alma Katsu is an interesting yet dark journey. A moment in history known as the Donner Party has been relived and retold here. Survival is key. Each member of that doomed party went through hell. Back then, traveling was difficult if not impossible. Timing was not on the Donner Party’s side. Their hardships soon led to chaos, mistrust, and death. Alma Katsu made this historical fiction come alive with a suspenseful voice. A sadness clung to every page. The intensity of the plot grew and it was hard to let go of the book. I felt sorry for the characters and enjoyed following them on this trail. The plot was steady but packed with the right amount of details and action to keep the pages turned. Overall, I would recommend it to those looking for a scary yet entertaining tale.

Review: A Simple Christmas by Charlotte Hubbard

A Simple Christmas (Simple Gifts #3)

 

 

 

 

Synopsis: 

“Hubbard writes Amish stories with style and grace.”
–RT Book Reviews 

The rustic beauty of a country Christmas fills the Simple Gifts crafts shop, while the Amish residents of Willow Ridge pull together in uncertain times–and in the face of an unexpected homecoming. 

Nora Hooley’s shop is abuzz with preparations for the holiday open house, and Rosalyn Riehl is handcrafting wreaths from evergreen boughs, pinecones, and other natural materials. The work is a welcome diversion for the only unmarried daughter of Cornelius Riehl: her gruff dat has been receiving envelopes marked Past Due, leaving dutiful Rosalyn to manage the household’s inexplicably shrinking budget. Then another distraction swaggers into Simple Gifts–blue-jeaned and leather-jacketed, with a reputation that precedes him.

Marcus Hooley hightailed it to Willow Ridge on a wing and a prayer–not that he’s the praying type. He rejected his Amish roots long ago. But behind the bad-boy attitude is a gifted horse trainer who’s counting on some
bent-but-not-broken family ties to throw him a lifeline. He can’t erase his past, but a sparking attraction with strong, spirited Rosalyn holds the promise of a second chance . . . and of shedding light on shadowy secrets to build a bright tomorrow.

Praise for A Simple Vow

“Charlotte Hubbard has a way of writing that draws you into the story from beginning to end.”
–Romance Junkies

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

A Simple Christmas by Charlotte Hubbard is a sweet Amish tale. There is plenty of trouble, intrigue, and emotion to keep the pages turning. A person runs from his  life only to head straight into another mess. Only this one leads his heart  into a bright future. But until he figures out his path, a lot of mischief and sadness follow him everywhere. Another young person, is dealing issues with her father. A secret that is eating up the family and soon tears them apart. Meeting each other, leads them to hope…and maybe, happiness. Charlotte Hubbard brings a warm heartfelt story to life. Her characters are open and inviting. It is easy to get lost within their journey. Themes such as forgiveness, family, and faith is inserted into this book. I am in love with the novel. Perfect, clean, and inspiring…to read. Overall, I recommend to all Christian readers. This Amish tale is must read.

 

Review: The Air You Breathe by Frances de Pontes Peebles

The Air You Breathe

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

The story of an intense female friendship fueled by affection, envy and pride–and each woman’s fear that she would be nothing without the other.

Skinny, nine-year-old orphaned Dores is working in the kitchen of a sugar plantation in 1930s Brazil when in walks a girl who changes everything. Graça, the spoiled daughter of a wealthy sugar baron, is clever, well fed, pretty, and thrillingly ill behaved. Born to wildly different worlds, Dores and Graça quickly bond over shared mischief, and then, on a deeper level, over music.

One has a voice like a songbird; the other feels melodies in her soul and composes lyrics to match. Music will become their shared passion, the source of their partnership and their rivalry, and for each, the only way out of the life to which each was born. But only one of the two is destined to be a star. Their intimate, volatile bond will determine each of their fortunes–and haunt their memories.

Traveling from Brazil’s inland sugar plantations to the rowdy streets of Lapa in Rio de Janeiro, from Los Angeles during the Golden Age of Hollywood back to the irresistible drumbeat of home, The Air You Breathe unfurls a moving portrait of a lifelong friendship–its unparalleled rewards and lasting losses–and considers what we owe to the relationships that shape our lives.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Air You Breathe by Frances de Pontes Peebles delivers a Brazilian historical tale that is rich in culture. It also features two women going against the present life to find something better for themselves. They go away from their community’s expectations and soar higher than they can dream. Music, slavery, and unwavering friendship make this an interesting read. Frances de Pontes Peebles captures the time periods perfectly. Readers, like myself, will travel back in time to World War II era. The writing style is unique and gives a clear voice to these Brazilian women. It is both sad and fun to explore.

Inside this book, I got to watch as two women went on to begin their own future. They quickly became best of friends with a talent in the music industry. This road leads to a roller-coaster of jealousy, love, and loss. Both need the other one for support. To them, it was like they couldn’t operate well, unless they were together. However, despite their need for each other, they also have this push and pull relationship. Each gave their support to the other one yet at times they were competitive and cruel. The Air You Breathe is an emotionally engaging story. It is easy to get swept into the characters’ lives. Overall, I recommend this women’s fiction novel to others.

 

Review: Blythe of the Gates by Leah Erickson

blythe-cover-hirez.jpg

 

 

 

 

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

Blythe of the Gates by Leah Erickson is a deep emotional story that pulled me in from the start. The main characters went through a life of hell before they got to where they were. A young baby boy left in blood at a nunnery, was then working on a farm where he was abused, and then left as an orphan. He soon worked in a carnival where he meet an older man. One that had magic. The magic drew him in unlike anything else. It held promise of a better, happier life. Yet, the things we want in life are not always what we need. The boy becomes the magician. He meets our lady protagonist. From there, she has lived in fear of her husband. A sadness swept over me  like an ice-cube going down my back. It was depressing. She ended up living a rich lifestyle but was abused by the magician. Her happiness sapped out of her. Until, Sean…a man as ordinary as her. He makes her happy but not perfectly happy. Things spiral out of control and our lady find herself in one chaotic mess after another.

Blythe of the Gates featured themes such as marriage, abuse, and moving forward. Luna and her husband were both lost souls looking for happiness. After reading this novel, I am still not sure if Luna will ever find it. Her husband managed to  find a temporary form of happiness but it still never gave him the full satisfaction that he desired. This story was epic. The pages were dark, engaging, and mysterious…I enjoyed reading it. Overall, I recommend this book to fans of Unfortunate Events. It has the same resemblance but better.

 

 

Review: Feral Attraction by Eileen Watkins

Synopsis:

Cat groomer Cassie McGlone tails a killer gone wild over feral felines. . .

Cassie’s good friend Dawn is part of an organization that’s trying to protect a colony of stray cats on the property of a senior condo community in Chadwick, New Jersey. The residents have got their backs up over the cat invasion, and Dawn has come to Cassie’s grooming and boarding shop, Cassie’s Comfy Cats, to ask her help in talking sense to them.

Not everyone’s against the cats. Eccentric Sabrina Ward feeds them and has even created makeshift shelters for them in the nearby woods, infuriating her neighbors. Following a heated community meeting–in which Cassie and her veterinarian boyfriend come up with a proposal–Sabrina’s body is found in the woods. The police are calling her death an accident, but Cassie smells a rat. Narrowing down the list of suspects may be tougher than herding cats, but Cassie is determined to collar the killer before another cat lover has a fatal accident . . .

Praise for The Persian Always Meows Twice

“Fans of felines will appreciate Cassie’s demonstrated attachment to the master species, which Watkins successfully integrates throughout her debut, a deft blend of mystery and cat love.” –Kirkus Reviews

“A promising start to a new cozy series. And the information the author provides about cats is fascinating.” –Suspense Magazine

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Feral Attraction by Eileen Watkins is an exciting feline mystery. It turns out that a community of feral cats have moved closer to an older retired community housing center. That’s where all the trouble begins…A few residents began feeding the cats thus, an increase in the population of feral cats being seen. Many of the residents do not like the cats and want them gone. Some are willing to go to the extreme to get rid of the cats and those invloved in helping the cats stay alive and free. Murder, mayhem, and a charming cast of characters are found in this book. I love how an expert cat groomer who has an animal behavior degree is called in to settle the dispute. But Cassie soon finds herself in more hot trouble than she can handle…I loved reading this new novel. Overall, I would recommend Feral Attraction to all readers. I can’t wait for the next book!

Review: Goodbye Cruller World by Ginger Bolton

Synopsis:

Named after her beloved tabby, Deputy Donut, Emily Westhill’s donut shop in small-town Fallingbrook, Wisconsin, is doing so well, she’s expanding into catering weddings. But a killer is about to crash the reception . . .

Normally, Emily’s eyes tend to glaze over when prospective brides go on about their wedding plans. But when the owner of the clothing shop, Dressed to Kill, asks Emily to design a donut wall for her reception, she’s immediately sweet on the idea. With the help of her father-in-law and business partner–the former police chief of Fallingbrook–she hangs the treats from dowels on the wall so guests can help themselves.

But that night, when the groom ends up on the floor with signs of poisoning, Emily suspects someone has tampered with her treats. When the groom dies, there’s no way to sugarcoat it: she’s got a murder on her hands. Despite a list of suspects as long as the guest list, Emily vows to find out who created the killer confection to save her shop’s reputation and keep the bride out of handcuffs. She’ll have to move fast . . . before the poisoner takes a powder.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Goodbye Cruller World by Ginger Bolton is one of the best cozy murder mysteries I have read lately. The characters are so real. The cast of characters are funny, charming, and deadly if crossed. Themes of family, love, and food can be found inside this book. Ginger Bolton created an a very entertaining piece of fiction.

The main question was how far does our love push us and how far is too, far? An older sister takes raising her younger sister way too seriously…Jenna was right in saying, that her older sister, Suzanne, is smothering her. When one cannot be allowed to marry a man whether he was decent or not, is not up to anyone but the bride. Yet things do not go as planned and get sticky pretty fast.

Emily is the main protagonist. She owns a bakery with her father-in-law. Emily lost her husband and her interest in weddings isn’t high. But then, she was asked to do a baking thing, and Emily is all in…until the groom is found dead eating one of her creations. Who poisoned him and why? Emily will work hard to find who the killer is to save her business and her friend aka the bride.

Another lovable character is Brent. Brent is a police officer who is deeply interested in Emily. Emily likes Brent, too. Plus, her feline cat, Dep, likes him as well. Brent ran miles just to get to a deadly scene where Emily is involved. The man deserved happiness and medals in my book. His personality is fun.

Overall, I would highly recommend Goodbye Cruller World to all readers. I got swept up immediately. The danger made it fast-paced. Ginger Bolton’s writing was engaging to follow. I truly loved her characters and how the scenes played out in the end. It was amazing. Never a boring moment and plenty of action.

Review: Poppy Harmon Investigates by Lee Hollis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Lee Hollis begins a delightful new series in which Poppy Harmon and her friends find that life after retirement can be much busier—and deadlier—than any of them ever anticipated . . .

When Poppy goes from complacent retiree to penniless widow in a matter of weeks, the idea of spending her golden years as the biggest charity case in Palm Springs renders her speechless. With no real skills and nothing left to lose, Poppy uses her obsession with true crime shows to start a career as a private eye . . .

But after opening the Desert Flowers Detective Agency with help from her two best friends, Violet and Iris, Poppy realizes that age brings wisdom, not business—until she convinces her daughter’s handsome boyfriend, Matt, to pose as the face of the agency. It’s not long before Matt’s irresistible act snags a client desperate to retrieve priceless jewelry burglarized from an aging actress at the Palm Leaf Retirement Village. Or before Poppy stumbles upon the bloodied body of the victim’s arch rival . . .

In a flash, Poppy’s innocent detective gig is upstaged by a dangerous murder investigation riddled with slimy suspects and unspeakable scandal. As she and her team uncover the truth, Poppy must confront the secrets about her late husband’s past and swiftly catch a killer lurking around the retirement community—even if it means turning her world upside down all over again. 

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

Poppy Harmon Investigates by Lee Hollis is an interesting twist to a new mystery series. It’s similar to Miss Fisher and Murder She Wrote. I love murder mysteries with a strong woman sleuth. That’s exactly what I found here. Poppy Harmon is the new detective lady in town and she’s definitely worth following in this book.

The book cover led me thinking that Poppy Harmon was in her tense ties when she is in fact, in her 60’s. I can picture Poppy dressing like the woman pictured on the cover except for the heels…considering her age.

Poppy Harmon is a retired actress left with no money. She then works on finding an income and the choice she makes will make readers laugh out loud. Poppy decided to run her own detective agency with a little help from friends and her daughter’s boyfriend. Like most women sleuth just beginning their epic journey, Poppy lands herself in trouble. Mayhem, murder, and humor are displayed across these entertaining pages.

Overall, I would recommend this new series to all readers. There is plenty of action, intrigue, and peril moments that adds to the suspense of the plot. Fast-paced with exciting characters, Lee Hollis sucked me into her world of fiction. 

 

Review: Before and Again by Barbara Delinsky

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

From Barbara Delinsky, the New York Times bestselling author of Blueprints and Sweet Salt Air, a brand-new novel about a woman in hiding finding the courage to face the world again.

Mackenzie Cooper took her eyes off the road for just a moment but the resulting collision was enough to rob her not only of her beloved daughter but ultimately of her marriage, family, and friends—and thanks to the nonstop media coverage, even her privacy. Now she lives in Vermont under the name Maggie Reid, in a small house with her cats and dog. She’s thankful for the new friends she’s made—though she can’t risk telling them too much. And she takes satisfaction in working as a makeup artist at the luxurious local spa, helping clients hide the visible outward signs of their weariness, illnesses, and injuries. Covering up scars is a skill she has mastered.

Her only goal is to stay under the radar and make it through her remaining probation. But she isn’t the only one in this peaceful town with secrets. When a friend’s teenage son is thrust into the national spotlight, accused of hacking a powerful man’s Twitter account, Maggie is torn between pulling away and protecting herself—or stepping into the glare to be at their side. As the stunning truth behind their case is slowly revealed, Maggie’s own carefully constructed story begins to unravel as well. She knows all too well that what we need from each other in this difficult world is comfort. But to provide it, sometimes we need to travel far outside our comfort zones.

From a multimillion-selling master of women’s fiction, Before and Again is a story of the relationships we find ourselves in—mothers and daughters, spouses and siblings, true companions and fair-weather friends—and what kind of sacrifices we are or aren’t willing to make to sustain them through good times and bad.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Before and Again by Barbara Delinsky is a fast paced plot. The story is about a family’s life that gets turned upside down when they loose their only daughter. A five-year-old girl, dead on impact of another car hitting them. The mother was driving the car. Since then, life has beennothing but hell for the parents. A divorce, separation, guilt, shame, and grief immediately consumed me. I felt an instant sympathy for the family, especially the mother. It was intense. Sad, horrifying, and just one big emotionally charged journey. What started out as a sad and dark road, soon proved to hold some hope and light for this couple. I loved how realistic and how I was shown what was happening.

The situations were not easy but I could easily see all of this happening in real life. It’s difficult to lose a loved one, especially one that was so young and in the mother’s care at the time…the physical and emotional trauma would be hard. Yet Barbara Delinsky showed that there is always a light at the end of the long dark tunnel. We may lose ourselves but not all is lost. There is hope for a future…overall, I would recommend this to readers everywhere.

 

Review: Breathless by Celeste Bradley and Susan Donovan

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

A sensuous, delightful romantic women’s fiction novel from New York Times bestselling authors Celeste Bradley and Susan Donovan!

She was “the Swan.” London’s premiere courtesan. Men want to be with her. Women loathe her success and yet admire her beauty, her riches, her independence. But when the jealous wife of her lover moves to have the Swan banished from her home on the high seas, she winds up crashed against Spain’s rocky coast with no shoes, no clothes-and no name. Taken in by a tortured, sensuous man known as The Artist, the Swan comes to know the woman she wants to be—her artist’s siren.

When Art Professor Brenna Anderson is in danger of losing her post at Harvard, the rule-following, prim professor is at a loss of how to salvage the shreds of her life. But when a new painting in the mysterious Siren collection is discovered in a dusty old house in France, Brenna does the unthinkable—hops on a plane to uncover the identity of the beautiful, enigmatic woman who is the subject of the paintings.

There’s just one hitch—the frustrating, irritating, bold and beautiful art hunter, Fitch Wilder, is also looking for the Siren. He’s been a thorn in Brenna’s professional side for years, but when their individual quests lead them to team up despite being enemies, a whole new sumptuous world of art and culture opens up for the two of them. And with it, they enter a realm of passion and love…

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Breathless by both Celeste Bradley and Susan Donovan is a book unlike any other. A contemporary romance that brings a story about erotic art paintings to life. In this story, I got to learn more about this modern like art that would appear to be just sexual in form to me. But to those who really know art, it really wasn’t about the sex appeal. It was more than just that. That’s where an academic woman scholar and a sexy male art hunter come together to find out more about The Swan paintings. These paintings have a story that needs telling. The art portraits themselves, sound so appealing and realistic that it was like being there seeing and experiencing what the characters got to experience firsthand.

Breathless is more than just a sexy romance that burrowed deep into my skin. It caught my attention and held it fast. The journey from the present to the past of the woman courtesan, who was painted as The Swan, was a woman who lived many lives. She had to find herself and that happened when she found and fell in love with the male painter. Following her historical journey from England to the Americas was fascinating. I felt disinterested as first, but after learning more, I could not stop reading.

The modern cast of characters include Brenna Anderson. She’s clever, gorgeous, and talented. Her former lover is an idiot and loses her by his betrayal. Then, there’s the work issues about the subject of art that Brenna is teaching to her students. Some parents who fund the art program were complaining about her choices. Brenna wanted to tell them to stick their opinions…but the university has its hands tied. And that is where her life journey begins…chasing after a portrait that may link The Swan series and letters to the life of the woman whose protairt is the talk of the century. But she might have to work with a man who defies what she normally trusts.

Fitch Wilder is the next modern day character who makes this a lot of fun to read. He was vibrant, sexy as hell, and adventurous. Sometimes he broke the rules but finding out more on the identity of the woman in The Swan painting was worth the risks. Even if the led him to the fiery yet most engaging woman he has ever met…Professor Brenna Anderson.

The Courtesean in the paintings somehow has brought two modern people together. Finding a love tha burns as deeply as the one she experienced. Love, sex, history, and art are all found in this epic tale. A journey of survival, loss, and new beginnings. I loved it. Overall, I would recommend this novel to all readers. It was the best thing that I have read in a long time.

 

Review: Grounds for Remorse by Misty Simon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

No more cheating . . .

Best friends Tallie Graver and Gina Laudermilch both seem to spend a lot of time around urns. For Tallie, they’re part and parcel of the family business, Graver’s Funeral Home. Even though she’s traded ashes for dusting with her own cleaning business, she still works part-time for her folks and lives above the funeral parlor. For Gina, they’re the vessels that contain her heavenly brew at her coffee shop, Bean There, Done That. And both women are learning that owning a business can make finding time for romance challenging.

But when Gina’s new beau turns out to have a wife, who barges into the coffee shop to take him home, she can’t contain her bitterness and loudly threatens to poison his cup or boil him in vat of coffee. So when Mr. Wrong turns up dead at the bottom of a staircase inside Gina’s locked home, she finds herself at the top of the police’s suspect list. Tallie needs to sweep in to save her friend. But she’ll need to watch her step, or she may go from being a funeral home employee to becoming their next client . . .

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Grounds for Remorse by Misty Simon is a deadly chase for a woman sleuth, Tallie. Tallie’s best friend is dating a man that seems too good to be true. Just when they should be heading out for a date, a wife comes in cursing at Tallie’s bff. Gina swore to kill her latest if he does not stay away from her. Turns out that a lot of people overheard. Next thing they know, he ends up dead in Gina’s place. From there Gina is a top suspect. But Tallie knows her friend did not do it. That left questions of who did it and why he or she would frame Gina.

Tallie is a strong woman dependent woman who left her previous ex. Both she and her friend Gina start dating again. Only Gina’s date seems to be more than what he appears to be. Tallie is dating a decent man, Max. Max is easy to love. He is perfect for Tallie. Max is a complete gentleman around Tallie and makes her happy. Tallie works for her family’s funeral home yet she has a thing for solving a crime and getting into deadly situations. The police, like Burton do not want to see Tallie in a long time. She’s always getting herself into trouble. Her boyfriend, Max, agrees. This made me laugh.

Tallie wants everyone she cares about to be happy and safe. Yet it appears all she gets is yelled at for placing herself into danger. She swears she won’t get involved again…but usually, when  that is said, it seems trouble will always find Tallie no matter what she says. I can already feel it brewing.

Gorunds for Remorse was fun, addictive, and charming. It had enough suspense to keep me guessing. The characters were quirky and realistic. I felt like I was there and could see these things happening for real. Trouble, mischief, and death can be found inside this book. I was thoroughly entertained. The promise of another book featuring Tallie, Gina, and Max is exciting. I cannot wait to read the next grand adventure. Misty Simon has caught my full attention and will be keeping it glued for her next book in this, A Tallie Graver Mystery, series.

Review: The Summer I Met Jack by Michelle Gable

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author imagines the affair between JFK and Alicia Corning Clark – and the child they may have had.

Based on a real story – in 1950, a young, beautiful Polish refugee arrives in Hyannisport, Massachusetts to work as a maid for one of the wealthiest families in America. Alicia is at once dazzled by the large and charismatic family, in particular the oldest son, a rising politician named Jack.

Alicia and Jack are soon engaged, but his domineering father forbids the marriage. And so, Alicia trades Hyannisport for Hollywood, and eventually Rome. She dates famous actors and athletes and royalty, including Gary Cooper, Kirk Douglas, and Katharine Hepburn, all the while staying close with Jack. A decade after they meet, on the eve of Jack’s inauguration as the thirty-fifth President of the United States, the two must confront what they mean to each other.

The Summer I Met Jack is based on the fascinating real life of Alicia Corning Clark, a woman who J. Edgar Hoover insisted was paid by the Kennedys to keep quiet, not only about her romance with Jack Kennedy, but also a baby they may have had together.

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

The Summer I Met Jack by Michelle Gable is a great read. It is based off some realistic events. I found that part intriguing. My mind spun with how would those characters have survived, done, and moved forward. The consequences of their actions and the choices they have made will affect them like a domino affect. The book was similar to some soap opera themes but had a real life tune. There was plenty of drama, sacrifices, and emotions that flew across the pages. I was deeply entertained. The intensity and curiosity of what would happen to and between both Jack and Alicia caught me.

This novel was historically interesting. Michelle Gable did her research into the whole affair JFK and Alicia Corning Clark. The writing was engaging. I could not stop reading her book. The more I got into it, the more I had to read it. There was and still is a mystery surrounding the real historical events and the ones in the novel. I loved that! A romance that soon turned forbidden, and then distorted and kept hidden in such a way tha no one really knows the answers was appealing to me. Overall, I recommend The Summer I Met Jack to all readers.

Review: The Boy at the Door by Alex Dahl

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

This riveting psychological suspense debut by Alex Dahl asks the question, “how far would you go to hold on to what you have?”

Cecilia Wilborg has it all–a loving husband, two beautiful daughters, and a gorgeous home in an affluent Norwegian suburb. And she works hard to keep it all together. Too hard…

There is no room for mistakes in her life. Even taking home a little boy whose parents forgot to pick him up at the pool can put a crimp in Cecilia’s carefully planned schedule. Especially when she arrives at the address she was given
and finds an empty, abandoned house…

There’s nothing for Cecilia to do but to take the boy home with her, never realizing that soon his quiet presence and knowing eyes will trigger unwelcome memories from her past–and unravel her meticulously crafted life…

Rating: 3.5-stars

Review:

The Boy at the Door by Alex Dahl is a psychological mystery more so than a thriller. Yes, it’s dark. But it has more psychological issues than frightening tones. I found this novel to be more filled with suspense. Every page kept me guessing. I couldn’t figure it out…and I am still left guessing what really happened. Two women have their lives completely tangled and brought upside down…their families have gone through secrets, lies, and deceptions. Cecilia is a tightly controlled woman who breaks apart when her perfect life breaks apart. Who knew picking up a child, would be the start to a hellish nightmare. I did not feel any fear with this tale. It swept me up deeper into the inner turmoils of each woman. Annika is a woman whose life was the darkest and most intense. She was like a shadow lurking on every page. Their stories are so sad. I felt their pain as if it were my own. The emotional journey was well-done.

Review: First Comes Love by Heather Heyford

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

In Heather Heyford’s newest book, a single mom and attorney with deep roots in the rolling hills of Oregon’s Ribbon Ridge wine country thinks her family is perfect as is—until she crosses paths again with a gruff police officer who has two boys of his own . . .

There is nothing sweeter than the family you pick yourself . . .

After detective Alex Walker’s last case in Portland is skewered by a tough-as-nails attorney, he decides to finish out his career on a quiet note in the Willamette Valley. Dedicated to his job and committed to his family, he’s fine letting his brusque exterior keep even the thought of a relationship at bay—especially once he realizes his new hometown is the old hometown of the attorney who ruined his last case . . .

Single mom and attorney Kerry O’Hearn is just as wary as Alex is, thanks to her disastrous first marriage. But she isn’t fooled by Alex’s tough-guy image. When he asks for her assistance in gaining custody of two little boys from an abusive foster home, she sees what he desperately tries to hide: a giant-sized heart. Between them they have five kids and a whole barrel of bad experience. And yet, Kerry can’t shake the feeling that she and the crusty cop were meant to be . . .

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

This contemporary romance novel by Heather Heyford is sweet, engaging, and heartfelt. There is a huge theme on family. Patience, love, and friendship are among the smaller themes featured in this book. I was hooked. I connected quickly to both the single mom and the police officer. Both have enormous hearts of gold and an unavoidable attraction to each other. First Comes Love, was fun to follow. Kerry O’Hearn is a single mother who feels something for the former police officer she knew from her past. Brought together again after so much time, both end up getting what the desired and what they never thought they could have. The children made for some laugh out loud moments. I truly enjoyed reading this romantic tale. Overall, Irecommend it to readers everywhere.

Review: The Rainmaker by Petra Landon


 

 

Synopsis:

As they race to untangle the past and thwart a power-hungry Wizard, Tasia must face her toughest decision yet. Can she take a leap of faith and risk her deadliest secret?

Tasia Armstrong is no longer a nondescript, friendless and naïve Wizard flying under the radar on the fringes of Chosen society. With her fate now publicly entwined with that of a powerful Shifter Pack, she must navigate the minefield of Pack politics while keeping her secrets and cover safe from the Chosen who hunt her. With a Pack to defend her, a powerful Alpha to protect her interests and friends to watch her back, her life is a far cry from before. But living with the Shifters holds new challenges for a Chosen more used to the shadows.

The stakes have never been higher as old fault lines, long-buried secrets, Wizard dysfunction, and Lady Bethesda’s ruthless machinations draw the Chosen ever closer to a civil war. While Tasia grapples to avoid the pitfalls and confront her demons, it is an unlikely nemesis who forces her to face her moment of truth. Tasia finds herself at the crossroads – at stake are her carefully constructed house of cards and her tangled relationship with the man who holds her enemies at bay. Will Tasia risk opening Pandora’s Box or will she disappear into the shadows again?

Author’s Note: The Rainmaker continues the story from The Prophecy. The books are not standalone and are intended to be read in order.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Rainmaker by Petra Landon is the second installment to this exciting paranormal fantasy series. Here, three sisters are crucial to fulfill a prophecy that none of them really know about…their mother is using them to create the prophecy foretold. Chaos, danger, and risks are involved on both sides. War seems inevitable seeing as one woman wants to destroy would be alliances among different beings as well as use certain sides for her own agendas.

I found this story intriguing. Plenty of action to keep the plot moving at a great pace. So many things are involved and the end game could result for the worse. Wizards, weres, and vampires are found as cast members. Each one has a particular tie in this tug of war. Enemies are everywhere and it’s only a mattter of time before things break apart. Tasia is the leading protagonist and most likable character. Her life is barely hanging onto a thread. So many choices and so little time…I highly recommend this second novel to readers worldwide.

Underground Author Throws Literary Rulebook Out of Window, Releasing Anthology of Short Prose and Poetry 



Kamikaze White Noise is a collection of three books by Nicole I. Nesca, The Sexual Repression Collection, Kink and Canned. Though not a formal trilogy, the books were written as companion pieces and follow the themes of sexual freedom, emotional frankness and street- carnival logic, all written with Nicole Nesca’s usual free-flowing sardonic wit. Kamikaze White Noise is prose and poetry that assaults the senses, liberates the mind and celebrates life on the edge like a perfect quarter-mile drag race.

For immediate release –

Winnipeg, Manitoba – Nicole Nesca’s collection, ‘Kamikaze White Noise’ is raw, electric and a free flowing mix of prose and poetry. The companion pieces are explorations of sexual freedom, art, death and love.

“I knew that mainstream publishers wouldn’t have the courage to publish the kind of work that I want to create,” says Nicole Nesca. “It’s interesting – sometimes I wonder, could Virginia Wolfe, Anais Nin or Charles Bukowski find success in today’s market? It’s as if bravery is a dirty word in literature. Fearlessness, to me, is everything to a writer”.

This isn’t just a book of prose and poetry but a beautiful streetwise and lyrical telling of a life in pursuit of truth, sex, love, religion-lost and experience. With an alternating rhythm of long free- flowing sentences and short, minimalist statements, Kamikaze White Noise is like nothing on the market today – an original urban street-hymn that harkens to writers of yesterday like Sylvia Plath and also the more modern rock and roll writings of Patti Smith, but always and forever original and unique.

“The first selections are rapid fire, stream of consciousness, the language vivid and raw. Full of the anger of youth. Later selections are more thoughtful, still angry at times, but more informed. Nesca’s style is affecting and honest. Prose without pose. And this collection of three books ends up being a very effective package -the rare whole that is more than the sum of its parts. Success. Nicole I. Nesca is an artist that deserves your support!” Ted Prokash

  https://www.joylesshousepublishing.com/ 

Kamikaze White Noise is available in printed copy and as an ebook.

For more information, as well as to explore the author’s bibliography, visit the official website: http://screamingskullpress.com.

About the Author

Nicole Nesca was born in Ohio. She developed a love of music, painting and writing early on and continued that love throughout her adult life. While living in Canada, she completed her first three works of poetry and prose collected in the anthology piece, KAMIKAZE WHITE NOISE., and her latest release of poems, Diamond Scarred Alley. She has been published in several E-Zines and has been a part of two anthologies.

Nicole Nesca, and her husband Tony Nesca, are the editors of the underground publishing company Screamin’ Skull Press.

Contact: Nicole Nesca / stalekisses@hotmail.com / 204 489 7824





Review: The Significant Other by Nicole Strycharz 

Synopsis:

Adam: I swore off men years ago to protect myself. I don’t trust guys. Guys break hearts, they take, and they don’t give like women do. That’s why for the past ten years I’ve entrusted my heart to a tattooed, multi-hair colored, vixen named Trix. Trixie is my safe haven. She doesn’t just back up my voice in our band she backs me in life. 
Sadly, I don’t reciprocate like I should. My phobia of PDA and my over-protectiveness are hard to put up with. It might be because I need more than I let on. More than I would dare to admit to. 
We moved to NY to grow as a band but then I met ‘him’…our boss; a sexy as hell, bad boy with a convict’s past and a talent for breaking men and women’s hearts alike. He’s bad news… An urban beast with too much edge and he’s prowling around my comfort-zone relationship. 
Now I’m not sure who my significant other is… my girl or the man determined to remind me who I really am and what I truly want. 

Trixie: Coming to the city was our ticket to fame. It was me and Adam against the odds of notoriety but since we arrived in the Big Apple, we’ve also been made aware how small our bubble of safe love is. 
I know what my boyfriend probably hasn’t admitted to himself… that I’m not enough for him. We both are just too chicken to do anything about it. 
New York is changing us. The people we meet here, the emotions we face, even our music… and if there is anything you learn from these streets, it’s this… 
Traffic and life, they both wait for no one. You have to go with the flow, ride the current, and keep up the pace. Both Adam’s love and mine is being tested, or it’s about to end. 
Hopefully we can figure it all out. Oh and add that to my list of to do’s like keeping my twin away from a dangerous drug lord, struggling not to fall from a stranger, keeping the band from falling apart and not becoming a bumbling idiot in front of our criminally hot boss. Yeah…criminal…

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Significant Other by Nicole Strycharz is another brilliant masterpiece. Striaght and the LGBT community will love this book. Once more, I got another taste of the heart and soul the writer puts into her words. Emotionally, tugging on my heart strings. I cried, I laughed, and I fell in love. Frustrating, stunning, and well-told. The entire tale was nothing but epic. 

Nicole Strycharz created her first novel featuring a gay couple. A man who likes other men. That was until he had his heart broken. Then, he went and fell for Trixie. A female singer. But despite her loving him…something just was missing. Both knew it. Adam just didn’t want to face it and neither did Trixie. Adam is a sexy hot alpha male who easily gets under readers skin, like he did to me. His has a big heart. I noticed that from the beginning. Adam hid himself with Trixie…keeping his heart guarded. Until, they meet their new boss. A boss that is more alpha than Adam, sexy hot too, and has a thing for Adam…

Trixie is a submissive kind of woman. Made her great for Adam. But she wasn’t meant for him. That’s thought love. She knew Adam’s real love and it wasn’t for her. Trixie too, has the biggest heart anyone has read in fiction. Despite her sexy tough looks, lies a sweet engaging woman looking for love. Trixie finds love but it fails…then she has a sister that made me want to hug Trixie. Trixie goes out and beyond for her sister. A sister who will never change…

Overall, The Significant Other is a book I can easily see made into a movie for 18-year-olds and above due to its content. Sex, drugs, and other things. Life is messy, complicated, and unfair. I really enjoyed this novel, because it brought out real life issues that people battle with each day. Believable, intriguing, and well-written. Nicole Strycharz has done it again with her latest piece. I applaud Nicole for her astounding job in creating three-dimensional characters whose stories I’ll never forget. So readers, yes, I highly recommend this talented writer’s book, The Significant Other to all. 

Review: Grace and the Preacher




Synopsis:

At the age of twenty-three, postmistress Grace Cristler has all but given up hope of finding a husband among the narrowing group of eligible men in her town of Fairland, Kansas. But when her uncle decides to retire from the pulpit, Grace is responsible for corresponding with the new preacher set to take his place. She can’t deny the affection growing in her heart for Reverend Rufus Dille—a man she deeply admires but has only met through his letters.

 

Theophil Garrison is on the run from his past. Ten years ago his outlaw cousins convinced him to take part in a train robbery, but Theo fled the scene, leaving his cousins to face imprisonment. Now they’ve finished their sentences, but the plan for vengeance has just begun. Branded a coward and running for his life, Theo has aa chance encounter that could provide him with the escape he needs.  

 

But the young man’s desperate con might come at an enormous price for the tenderhearted Grace—and the entire town. Will Grace’s undeserved affection and God’s mercy make something beautiful from the ashes of Theo’s past?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Grace and the Preacher by Kim Sawyer is a wonderful story about forgiveness. I was hooked. The story told of a man running from his past life that soon caught up with him. An offer as a preacher for a new town gave him a chance to leave and start new. But soon, the past came tumbling down his present life. A young woman writes to the new preacher. She soon grew attached to the man in the letters. Once he comes to her town, secrets come out and betrayal will take over…it will be up to both characters to face their situations and decide the results. 

Kim Sawyer’s writing is superb. The emotional attachment happens quickly. Each character faces real life issues that helped me relate easily to them. I could understand what they went through and why. Clean, intriguing, and well-written. Grace and the Preacher is a satisfying Christian historical tale. Love, sacrifice, and redemption can be found inside…I loved it. This is definitely a book that I recommend to all. 

Modern Girl: A Novel

Modern Girl

 

Dear Readers,

It has taken me about four tries, and I finally think my book is on the right track. It’s still in the stage of rewriting so, it may contain many errors. But here’s an excerpt:

I waited. So far, nothing. All my dreams were but fading into air. Feeling frustrated, I turned to my computer. Hoping to scope for some sign. I needed a job. Well, I needed a lot more than just needing a job, but was God listening to me at the moment. Maybe, or maybe he’s just thinks I’m not ready yet. How much longer Lord? It wasn’t like I was a sixteen-year-old girl waiting for her first kiss. I did once a time, wish for that very thing. But it never happened. At least not until, I was nineteen. I almost remember it as if it were yesterday. We were sitting in his car, parked at local park. Listening to music we were just talking. Then, somehow, he moved closer, and before I knew what was happening, he kissed me. I didn’t know what to say. First kiss from a guy. What was I supposed to say or do? He; however, predicted my very exact reaction. I guess I was or still am just that predictable. Maybe that’s my issue. Guys liked a mystery about their girls. I basically tell my whole life story to guy. Thinking it wise to bear my whole self-up front rather than wait until later.

Was I just setting myself up for failure every time I did that or simply did I just not meet any man’s real interest? The only romance these days, are my romance novels. Without them, I probably wouldn’t know what the feeling was like between a man and woman. The novels always left me wondering if a romance could ever possibly be that hot and that passionate…

Okay back to the job hunt…every job either required skills I don’t have or required that I move to that particular location. I mean moving would be fine, if I had the money and a car to do so. I wanted to cry.

Maybe, if I actually took the time to pray the whole rosary or make it to adoration at my church, I might actually have better luck right now. Unfortunately, I was the kind of person who can’t sit still for long periods unless I have a majority of different kinds of tasks at hand.

Thus, the reason for me starting so many projects and only completing a few at a time.

I was about to let my head fall on my desk when…

“Piper, you are so going to owe me a girl’s night out for this!” Shouted my Kendra. My bestest friend in the whole world. Unlike me, she was happily married to a great man.

Slapping a newspaper upon my desk, she goes to sit on the edge of my full sized bed. Taking up the paper, I instantly look at the highlighted parts.

WANTED: A FULL TIME LIBRARIAN. MUST WORK FROM 8AM-4PM ON MONDY’S THROUGH FRIDAY’S. ALSO, MUST BE FAMILIAR WITH THE DEWEY SYSTEM, BOOKS, AND HAVE A POSITIVE ATTITUDE.

“So, what do you think?” I can just hear Kendra getting worked up over her find.

“This is unbelievable!”

Kendra frowned.

“I meant that in the best of ways. I might actually get a job now, thank you!” I shouted back and hugged her tightly.

Kendra’s smile told me that she was happy to have helped my job dilemma. But there was only one obstacle. I had to apply and then be interviewed…then wait for a response on whether or not I actually will be hired.

Going back to the newspaper, I went on to read:

MUST STOP BY LIBRARY TO APPLY. INTERVIEWS WILL HAPPEN ON SPOT. ONLY SUITED CANIDATE WILL BE HIRED. JOB INTERVIEWS CLOSE FRIDAY AT 4PM ON MAY 16TH.

May 16th at 4pm? “Oh my gosh, it closes today at 4pm!”

“Oh my gosh! Let me drive you. I forgot to check that bit…I was too excited.”

Grabbing decent clothes and putting them on as I’m running down the stairs is indeed a task that is not to be tried. I almost fell a few times if it weren’t for Kendra grabbing my arm to keep me from falling.

As we get into her small car, Kendra turns the key. A litter splutter then nothing.

“Oh crap this is not good!”

“Oh my gosh! This is so not good. Try again, Kendra!”

“I’m trying…” Turning the key once more… the engine comes to life.

“YAY!”

It took us ten minutes to get to the library. I practically ran out and stumbled right into a man. He was like running into a brick wall but warm and breathing…shaking my head, I apologized and went to the door. Only it was closed. A sign that read, sorry, we are closed.

“What!” That’s not possible!

“I’m afraid we had to close early due to no interviews.”

“But it’s not 4pm, and I am here for an interview!”

The man looked at me with his piercing green eyes. I looked right back at him. Standing my ground. I will not let him scare me away from a chance to interview for a job that obviously wasn’t taken yet…

“Fine. You’re hired. You will start tomorrow. Be here at 7:30 am sharp. No lateness will be tolerated.”

“Yes. Thank you.”

Nodding his head, he turns to leave.

“Wait, what’s your name?”

He turns back to me. “Mitchell.”

Then, turns away once more.

I stand there gaping after the man.

“What just happened?”

“I just got hired for the job!” I told her.

“Oh my gosh! I knew it! I just knew it! Oh my gosh! We are so celebrating! Girl’s night out you owe me remember?” Kendra said dragging me away to her car.

I felt light headed. I was finally going to work and not just work any job, but one that I would love to do.

Enjoy!

 

Cover Reveal: The Nightmare Train by Danielle Urban

The Nightmare Train

The Nightmare Train by Danielle Urban protrays a haunting story just as errie and horrifying as the Holocaust but with a modern twist and a horror much worse than Hitler himself. A young girl boards a train with her family, and instead is led to a faraway place reaking of terror and death. Once the train stops, all normality vanishes, and the real horror begins. Hundreds of people, men women, and children board this train and are led to their death. But will this one girl and her family survive along with the others on board? Or will the Nightmare Train continue to lure more people to their untimely death.

This novel was based on a nightmare that occured and has thus become a thriller instead. The nightly terrors and the bone chilling scenes will leave readers wide awake at night. No one should die..especially just for one evil man’s thrill of killing. A brilliant way in capturing innonect people and leading them to believe all is going to be well until the train reaches its final designation. A place where many have died before over and over again. Those who survived, work on the contruction of buildings that once was where all the dead bodies laid. Once a job was complete, the living became the dead. One girl, thousands of dead who are willingly to help, and a bit of courage may evenutally put an end to The Nightmare Train…or so they thought. Readers will love this new edge of your seat thriller. I highly recommend signing up for the arc copies coming soon.

Urban Lit Magazine Cover Reveal

UrbanLit September Issue

Universal Creativity Inc. is proud to present the new name of our creative writing magazine to Urban Lit. Urban Lit is a literary magazine that now delivers more content, better formats, and still free for readers and writers alike.

Urban Lit will be featuring several different authors in this new issue. We will also be featuring more articles on things that readers are curious about. Things like Most Talked about Books, Digital/Print or Both, New Book Releases, Press Releases for Authors, Editing, Formatting, Book Publishers, Contests, and of course writing prompts will all be inside of this very first new edition.

Also, we will be doing author of the month features, book of the month features, book reviews, short stories, poems, and much more.

We will also have two formats available to readers of Urban Lit for them to download. These will be in PDF & ePub.

September Issue is coming soon!

FREE Books & Magazines Coming Soon!

FREE Books & Magazines

JUNE2015IssueCover

We are happy to announce that June 2015 Issue for Universal Creativity Inc. will be released this Monday! The best-selling author Jacob Appel be featured inside our issue and we highly recommend reading his interview! Also, we will be featuring another author, Allen Eskens, who will have his interview featured as well.

Are you ready? The last and final piece to Enid is now here! What will happen next inside this thrilling piece written by Lucy Mitchell?

Free excerpts from Modern Girl will be featured for readers to get a taste of what the latest novel by Universal Creativity Inc. is like.

Pitch Slam for the summer starting this month will include a free open submission for all genres that contain universal themes such as family sagas, love, heartbreak, etc.. Details are inside the issue, which will be released this Monday!

Need help with your writing? Inside June’s 2015 Issue there is information aboutWriting to Publish, a creative writing course to help writers navigate through the writing, editing, and publishing process. A self-paced online course with lessons and assignments sent to you via email. Acertification of completion will be given via PDF format for those who complete the entire course.

A list of new literary agents inside as well as publishers seeking new submissions. Must read the issue to find out the details.

Mark your calendar! June 2015 Issue will be released this Monday June 8th. 

 Six Incredible Reads for the price of one novel! A collection of romance stories that readers will love. From A Duke to Remember (Historical Romance), Our Story (Erotic), A Start (Contemporary), A Modern Cinderella (Contemporary), Beautifully Flawed (Paranormal), and His Slave (Paranormal).

 Two high school best friends dealing with a jealous enemy who plans to get revenge from the shadow realm. Little do they know that the one night they thought was going to be the best night ever turned out to be a nightmare that both have to live with until they can find a way to defeat the shadow. And just when they only had one enemy to deal with another appears out of nowhere causing them and their enemy danger unlike they ever imagined.

 A Modern Girl growing up in a world where things that should be so simple and easy can be so complicated and complex. Readers will laugh and cry, as the the character finds her way in society and learns to deal with love, loss, friendships, and school.

 Beautifully Flawed is about a woman who lives in a world where people struggle to fight agaisnt the Devil. Also known as a popular and most wealthy business owner who has learned to use the most advance technology to his advantage in making people obey him or be destroyed. Soon, a small town is on it’s last hope for a hero who can save them from the fate of the Devil. No one thought that their savior would be in the form a beautifully yet most dangerously flawed woman whose determination and stubbornness may help keep her alive long enough to complete her task successfully..or else she and her entire town will be wiped out with a single order from the Devil. Her task, is to make the Devil’s son believe in love. Sounds simple enough until she meets the man herself. A man who doesn’t take no  for an answer and one who is constantly falling away from life because of a disaster with love. Can she pull of her task in time or will her failure cost her everything?

Updates

I have been busy with editing, formatting and releasing new novels. I am sorry for not posting book reviews lately! April’s 2015 Issue is about ready for an early release. We are waiting on one more interview to be sent in before releasing the issue. There is a lot of stuff inside this recent issue. Three interviews. One from an author, a blogger, and a publisher! Plus, free short story and free excerpts from novels coming out soon. I am excited!

I have been reading a new novel by an amazing author. Her work is out of this world. I will post the review as soon as I get her approval. Also, her work will be featured inside the April Issue. And it’s a novel you will fall in love with. I certainly did.

Two new novels have been released. A New Way and Origins by Daniel J. Darcey.

Check out the covers!

origins A New Way4

And if you haven’t seen April’s cover, here it is:

April 2015 Issue

Novels Coming Soon:

Second Chances Shadow Lane Cover

New Service Coming Soon!

What new service will we be offering soon?

I am happy to announce that Universal Creativity Inc. will be offering eBook publishing services. We can can edit, design and publish your novel(s) or book(s) for you. We have one author who has agreed to sign on with us using our new services!

What will our publishing service include?

– Designing book covers

– Formatting your manuscript into an eBook

– Editing your manuscript

– Promoting your novel(s) or book(s)

– Advertising your novel(s) or book(s)

– Author Interviews

– Book Reviews

– Social Media Marketing

– Featured in Our Magazine

– Book Giveaways

– Book Tours

What makes us different from other publishing houses?

– We will be working closely with the authors we publish.

– We will work with the authors that sign on with us in designing their eBook covers.

– We will work with the authors during the whole editing & revision process.

– Authors will be more in charge of the marketing of their work.

– Authors will make more money be signing on with us. Because, we work on every task that other publishing houses do, but we give the author more say so by allowing them to say what they want for covers, marketing and  etc. We put authors in control of their work.

– We do the majority of the work, but we work closer with the author to establish a better, easier, and less frustrating way.

– We charge a one time low fee to our authors in doing all the heavy work that they publish with us. This allows the authors to keep all royalties and to increase their profits.

– If your manuscript needs work or is missing a lot, we will work closely with the authors to help them polish their work to be published.

– No author is left behind. We will be accepting all genres in fiction and nonfiction to be published by our company. We will be accepting short novels, novels, and series.

New Book Reviews Coming Soon!

New Book Reviews Coming Soon!

uvpic6

1. The Harem by Thomas Sheeney

2. Seven Day and Six Worst-Case Scenarios by Leslie Huggans

3. Flirting With Fire by Kyra Jacobs

4. Words That Bind by Ash Krafton

5. Inside Out by Lia Riley

6. There’s Always Love by Joycie Russ

7. Cowboy It’s Cold Outside by Kathrine Garbera

8. Goodness and Light by Patty Blount

9. Her Holiday Man by Shannon Stacey

Author Tours & Book Giveaways & Author Interview Coming Soon!

I am super excited! I get to host two author tours on here.

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I will be featuring two book giveaways as well. One of them will go live on October 3rd! And the other I will keep you up-dated.

&

I will be featuring an author interview with Rose Senehi, whose Contemporary Romance Fiction Novel, Dancing On Rocks, was given the 2014 Indie-Reader Discovery Award for Popular Fiction!

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