Tuesday, 27 December 2011

The Harvest by Scott Nicholson

This is the story of an alien entity crash landing in the Appalachian mountains. It starts to take over the residents of the town and things can only get worse with a special festival being held in a few days. Visitors are due in town and it's up to a psychology teacher and two old 'codgers' to save the town from disaster.

I really enjoyed this. It started off quite slowly but it soon picked up and became extremely difficult to put down! It was the love child of 'The Tommyknockers' and 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers' but on speed. The characters were solid and well rounded and there were the usual uber bad guys and also a couple that made me think were they or weren't they? it was sad in places, Scott managed to extract a lot of pathos - not easy given the subject matter. The ending was good and wrapped everything up nicely.

I recommend this for scifi/horror fans and for fans of Scott Nicholson. A great book with a great storyline.

                                                   I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it.  

Friday, 23 December 2011

A Grim Pact by Adam Slade

This is a story about a Grim Reaper, Mal, who is trying to chase a demon serial killer. He is nursing a broken leg, in love with a succubus who used to be his partner and to top it all, his boss, Death has just woken up after many years asleep. Some Reapers have all the luck!

This was a little difficult to get into at first, and hard to wrap my head around the idea that there was one Death but many Reapers. This was somewhat helped by having 'Grim Reaper Myths Dispelled' at the beginning of some of the chapters. Once I did get into it though, I really enjoyed it. The characters were colorful and different and larger than life! The story went along at a fair clip and there was plenty of action. I liked the fact that it was tackling a long held belief and turning it on its head! This is the second 'Reaper' story and I think it would help to have read the first as there are many references to events in the previous book that at times left me a bit confused. That being said, I still recommend it but with the caveat of reading the first, which I would very much like to now!

This review was originally written for the TBR Pile.

Thursday, 22 December 2011

ZombieDead by Ian Woodhead

This is the story of Dean, a scientist working in a secret underground lab in London. Something has gone wrong and all his coworkers are turning into the undead. He returns home to the sleepy village of Seeton to try and work on a cure, unaware the horror is following him and that the villagers are highly suspicious and mistrustful of strangers. Together with another returnee, Alison, they work together to try and solve the problem.

This is another belter by Ian. He is fast becoming the master of the zombie genre, I have yet to read one of his that I haven't liked. Once again the characters are believable and tangible. The village of Seeton was lifelike and just sleepy enough to be realistic. The story flowed nicely, and I found myself rooting for Dean and Alison to get through the horror intact. There were the obligatory odious characters you just have to love to hate and Ian does seem to make them particularly obnoxious! The ending was satisfying and I wasn't disappointed.

I recommend this as a must read for fans of Ian's and also to newcomers as it is not your usual run of the mill zombie slashfest.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Day's End by Scott L. Collins

This is a story about a woman (Nysa) who is at the top of her field in DNA retrieval at UCLA. She is head hunted by a strange gentleman for a project she knows nothing about but will pay top dollar for her services. She agrees, on the understanding she must have no contact with the outside world for the duration of the project, and tell no one where she is going. When a series of natural disasters prompts her boyfriend (Alistair) to try and find her, the project and his search suddenly are not quite what they seem.

This was a great book. I enjoyed the fact that the chapters were short, it meant that I could read it quickly in short bursts. As it happened I found it extremely hard to put down. The basic plot (which I can't divulge as it would give too much away) is a good one, and had me gripped to the end.The characters were solid and although the story played out with only three main characters, I didn't feel the story suffered. The ending was as sudden as it was shocking, so be prepared for that. It was satisfying though and tied up any loose ends. It did, however, need work on the editing.

All in all a brave subject to tackle, that the author has done justice with and I hope he has more in the pipe line.

This review was originally written for the TBR Pile.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Something a little different, WistfulSkimmies Book Reviews has won a coveted award!!

What a lovely surprise I had today! The talented Sue Palmer of www.suepalmersbookreviews.blogspot.com has given me the award of The Versatile Blogger. I was so shocked, I was speechless! I had a whole speech planned but I want you to read my reviews, not turn you off in droves so I binned it and saved you all the torture!

The tradition for receiving an this award is to:

1. Thank the person who gave it to you and link them back to your blog ( Sue, among many other things, you are a true star)

2. Share seven things about yourself ( not entirely sure if I have seven things to share)

3. Pass this award on to 5 other recently discovered blogs and inform them of the honour.

Seven things about me:-

1. I always wanted to work for the UN

2. I once had a steamy affair with Sean Bean

3. I won Masterchef on no less than 4 occasions

4. I am related (albeit distantly) to the Dalai Lama

5. I am constantly being mistaken for Gwyneth Paltrow

6. My next challenge is to try for X-Factor

7. I am due back at the psychiatric hospital in a couple of hours!

I have talked your ears off enough now so onto the people who are just as deserving of this award......

1. Annarita's Readers Corner

2. Confessions of a Call Centre Gal

3. Mel Comley, Author

4. Vixie's Stories

5. Cath 'n' Kindle Book Reviews

Friday, 9 December 2011

Sin by Shaun Allan

This is the story of Sin. A young man who checks himself into a psychiatric hospital because he can kill people just by thinking about it. He then tries to commit suicide by teleporting out of the hospital but he ends up on a beach somewhere. Not knowing what to do or where to go - he is visited by his dead sister. She has come to show him that all is not as it seems and is his doctor as benevolent as he first appears or does he have some skeletons in his closet?

This was a fantastic story. Written in the first person (not an easy thing to pull off but the author manages it and then some) I was really able to get in Sin's head and feel his anguish as the revelations start to pile up. It was a good solid page turner and the ending was suitably explosive. For a story with so few main characters I was certainly gripped from beginning to end.

I totally recommend this because it's different. And that in and of itself is its appeal.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Crunk by Troy Kirby

This is the story of an ex-con granted early release due to a clerical error. Down on his luck he agrees to find some diamonds for his cell mate. What he wasn't told and doesn't realise is that he is not the only one after the diamonds. Before long his long suffering ex-wife is drawn into the hunt and he needs to keep her safe.

On the face of it this had such promise. It had the makings of a fantastic thriller - ex-cons, junkies (using sugar as a substitute!), old mob leaders and bent coppers all after a bag of diamonds. Sadly it all fell rather short of the mark.Too many editing errors and spelling mistakes made for confused and difficult reading. Plus the 'technical jail speak' left me baffled at times.

That said the characters were solid and I felt myself warming to Frank as he just wanted to right by his life and somehow constantly kept failing! There were some funny moments (not sure if this was intentional or not!), and some truly odious characters that were just crying out to be loved to hate!

I hesitate to recommend this, maybe with a caveat - if you can see past the errors and this is your sort of thing, go for it. Sadly it just didn't push my buttons.

I received a complimentary copy of this book for review.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

The Robin Hood Trilogy by Marsha Canham

This is a set of 3 books, spanning some 25 years in the life of the Wardieu family. It starts off with a battle between two brothers for a birthright and ends in Sherwood Forest in a grand showdown with Sir Guy of Gisbourne.

This is Marsha's take on the Robin Hood legend and it is utterly fantastic. Full of strong women, great heroes and plenty of action. They are great and solid historical romances. Plenty of emotion, as I said plenty of action and I shed a tear or two along the way. A fantastic adventure from start to finish!

I heartily recommend the trilogy as, although each story does stand on it's own, it is easier to read them altogether. Great for any fan of a good swashbuckling adventure!

The Last Arrow by Marsha Canham

This, the final story in the Robin hood Trilogy, is set some 11 years after the events of 'In the Shadow of Midnight'. This follows the life of the Black Wolf's daughter, Brenna. She meets a strange man poaching her father's fish, and her brothers and friend invite him back to their castle. Is there more to him than meets the eye? Thus begins a swashbuckling adventure filled with tournaments, dungeons (donjons), archery and a dangerous assassin bent on destroying the Wardieus of Amboise.

This is just as good as it's predecessors, if not better. I wholly identified with Brenna and it was great seeing a woman outbowing her rivals, most of them men! The story also sees the legend of Robin Hood finally coming together and all the old favourites are there. I loved the relationship between Gryffin and Brenna. it was an intensely passionate relationship from their first meeting and it took my breath away in places! There was much more action this time around, with the tournaments and culminating in the final showdown between the Wardieus and Sir Guy of Gisbourne. The ending was satisfying and tied up all the loose ends nicely.

Once again if you love swashbuckling historical romances, you will love this. Even if you are not sure, give it a chance. You won't be disappointed.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Friends of the Deceased by Dale J. Moore

This is the story of Katrina, the terminally clumsy, accident prone owner of Kat's Kuts, a hair salon in Toronto. She is asked by his lawyer to cut the hair of a recently deceased customer and from there she is plunged into a mystery involving jewellery theft, rogue charities and casket fraud. Paired up with an assistant from the salon, Marlene and a handsome detective, Jake - she tries to get to the bottom of the mystery.

This was a nice little detective story. I like the fact that the lead character is a female, and not a perfect one at that. Her interaction with the other characters was realistic and led to some genuinely funny moments. I really enjoyed this, and I did laugh out loud in places. It all came together for a happy and satisfying ending.

I recommend this as a happy little detective story. Not too long or too short, just nice enough to be read in a quiet afternoon.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my review.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

The Great Yellow Doom Bird by Jon A. Hunt

This is the story of a young boy. His father went off to sea and never came back so he goes to the beach every night with his uncle to see if he has come home. One evening he takes his neighbours dog for a walk and meets an odd gentleman up a tree. He is 7 feet tall and has eyes that are different colours, that also change with his mood. Thus begins an adventure that involves pirates, spy catchers, Eddies (whirlpools), Great Chiefs, volcanoes, enormous sea monsters and of course the Great Doom Bird of the title. I shan't say any more for fear of spoiling it.

I so enjoyed this. It put me in mind of Lemony Snicket (but better if I do dare to say!). Stultus (the odd guy) reminds me of Johnny Depp's Mad Hatter. He is this larger than life (literally!) chap with a personality that just jumps off the page at you. Patrick starts off as a quiet shy little boy who becomes a confident young man. Their quest to save the Doom Birds is an admirable (if fraught) one and anyone interested in conservation will appreciate it.

I recommend this for people of all ages. It is simply a lovely story, with enough action to keep everyone interested.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

In the Shadow of Midnight by Marsha Canham

This is set some years after the events of 'Through a Dark Mist'. Lucien and Servanne are now married and have children of their own and Eduard has grown up and established himself as a fine and noble knight in his own right. This time around, Eduard is the hero of the story and he has been charged with rescuing Eleanor, the Lost Princess of Brittany from the clutches of King John. They use the excuse of escorting Lady Ariel de Clare to her wedding as a cover.

Once again this was a fine historical romance, and a jolly good swashbuckling romp. I enjoyed this as much as the first (although there is no pressing need to read the first before this as it is a standalone story in its own right) if not more so as more of the familiar names from the Robin Hood legend crop up here. Names such as LittleJohn, Maid Marienne and Alan-a-Dale (albeit known as Alan-of-the-Dale here.) The smouldering romance between the feisty Ariel and the taciturn Eduard was played out to teasing perfection and there was plenty of swashbuckling action to boot. There were moments when I truly gasped out loud!

A fantastic historical story that I heartily recommend especially if you have read the first. I am eager to get on with the third now!

Friday, 28 October 2011

Summer Camp:A Memoir by Diane Hanks

This is the true story of the author's appallingly sad childhood at the hands of her alcoholic parents.in it she lays bare all the horrors she endured and the impact her childhood had on her and her siblings.

This is a very heartbreaking and moving story. But it is also a story of hope. I identified with the author, having had an alcoholic father and a mother who was too sick to look after me properly. The courage that the author showed throughout the book was nothing short of a miracle. The story flowed nicely and (through blurry eyes sometimes) I found it quite hard to put down. my heart goes out to the author and I hope she found some sort of peace in writing this.

I recommend this if you like this sort of book. It is moving but uplifting in places and is a story of survival first and foremost. This book will stay with you for a long time.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review.

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Wizard of Time by Sue Owen

This is a time travelling story. 3 teenagers are abruptly taken from their own times and brought to a wizard who needs help returning Excalibur to King Arthur, after it was stolen. They are given animal companions and new powers to help them on their quest.

I am a great fan of this type of story, I think the possibilities are endless. I also am very interested in the Arthurian legend, so to me this was a winner before I had even started! I loved the characters, and their animal companions were very endearing. I particularly liked the white tiger. the story moved at a good pace, and my fingers were constantly clicking the next page button to see what happened next.

This is aimed at the YA market but I think it would appeal to readers of all ages. I recommend it, particularly if you like the sort of dungeons and dragons type of story. This will have you gripped from page one.

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Men Dancing by Cherry Radford

This is the story of Rosie, a wife and mother slightly discontented with life. Her husband has a habit of cheating on her, she has an autistic son and her oldest son is starting to become an 'enfant terrible'. Her main love in life is the Ballet. A chance meeting with a ballet dancer on a train sets off a chain of events that will change her life forever.

For a debut book this was amazing, and endorsed by Sir Bruce (Forsyth) himself! Rosie was a very likeable and identifiable heroine. I am a partner and a mother myself so I could relate to her problems especially as my youngest has attention problems. The characters were all well-defined and I had no trouble imagining them. The storyline was believable and went along at a fair pace until just before the end when it took a shocking twist. I am sitting here with hanky in hand just thinking about it!

In short this is a very good book - if you like the Ballet and dancing you will love it. For a debut novel it shows great promise.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Spores by Ian Woodhead

This is the story of a fungal spore that has wiped out everyone over the age of 40. It is essentially the recounting of them rebuilding their lives thinking all is well when the spore cloud dissipates. Is everything ok or not?

This didn't start off like a typical 'Ian' story. The build up was quite gradual, lulling you into a false sense of security because about half way through...WALLOP! You are smacked around the face and the pace is totally unrelenting.I was carried along by the story and just had to keep reading. There were some decent characters and I was rooting for them to survive. There were the obligatory obnoxious characters and it was SUCH a relief for them to get their comeuppance! There are some quite shocking points and the imagination that went into the creatures was amazing.

In short this is well worth a read. An absolute must if you are a fan already but still worth a read if not.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Through a Dark Mist (Robin Hood Series #1) by Marsha Canham

This was a really enjoyable romp through history. Based on the Robin Hood legend but using different characters (although some were the same, such as Prince John, Richard the Lionheart & Sir Guy of Gisbourne). At it's heart was a story of revenge between two brothers with the thread of a story running through it.

This was so much fun! It started off fairly slowly but soon picked up pace. The back story of the rivalry between 'The Black Wolf of Lincoln' and 'The Dragon of Bloodmoor' was supenseful and action filled. The love story between Lucien and Servanne was tender and and teased out - almost to the point of torture but when they eventually got together it was beautiful. Of course no story is complete without a lunatic bad guy, played wonderfully by a woman, Nicolaa. She was deliciously evil and completely without conscience.

This was a wonderful book and I can heartily recommend it for all lovers of historical romance or if you just fancy a rollicking swashbuckling romp!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Trafficked:The Diary of a Sex Slave by Sibel Hodge

This is the story of a young woman who, promised the job of a lifetime, ends up being trafficked to Italy and being sold as a sex slave. It is written in diary form and tells of her life therein and what happens to her.

First off, may I issue a warning? This story is utterly heartbreaking. Some of the things that happen to Elena are truly horrific but somehow she never quite loses hope that she will be reunited with her daughter again. Being written in diary form I could see her in my head and I truly felt the things she was going through. I am not ashamed to admit I was in tears in places.

This is somewhat of a departure for this author as she is best known for her chick-lit novels. All I can say is 'Well done Sibel. This is an amazing novella and the jump from chick-lit to serious has been made successfully!'

I urge everyone to read this so more people are aware of this terrible trade in human lives. It must be stopped and can only be stopped if more are aware that it is going on. Well done, and thank you Sibel for opening my eyes.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Honk Honk My Darling by James Finn Garner

This is the story of a clown, down on his luck, now working as a detective. He has been tasked with finding the wife of one of the high fliers. Then the bodies start piling up....

This is the first time I have read a 'clown noir' and I hope it will not be the last. I found it to be achingly funny. It reads like a 'gumshoe' novel but set in the fictional town of Top Town which is where all the circus folk live. It reminded me a little bit of 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit?' in its approach. The characters were all larger than life and had fantastic names. The story was well paced, and a great page turner.

If you have never read a book like this you are missing a treat. I urge you to give it a go, you won't be disappointed.

Cruel Justice by Mel Comley

This is where Final Justice and Impeding Justice began. Bodies are piling up and Lorne thinks she has a serial killer on her hands, someone with a personal vendetta against her.

This takes us right back to the beginning. We begin to understand the reasons between the different relationships in Lorne's life. The characters are fleshed out a bit more in this and as ever it was a complete page turner. I read it very quickly as it was so hard to put down. It was nice to be taken back so we could see the relationships unfolding, somehow it made the other two books make a lot more sense!

I can recommend this as an opener to the series. If you have read the other books, its a must read. if you haven't then it is an excellent place to start in a series of thrillers that are utterly impossible to put down!

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Pure Justice by Linda L. Barton

This is the story of an Vietnam vet, bent on revenge for the brutal murder of his friends, turns vigilante. He then devotes his life to ridding the streets of 'scum'. On the flip side is the cop who is trying to catch him, who has also known great sadness in his life.

This was a very thought provoking book. It deals with the subject of an eye for an eye. Does Doug the cop turn in Ted the vigilante even though he is essentially doing his job for him and clearing the streets of rapists, thieves etc? Having known terrible sadness in his own life he is torn between doing his job and giving in to his real feelings. This was a great paced novel, with a good theme. It is not for the faint-hearted however as some of the scenes are pretty graphic. The characters were solid and I understood and agreed with their feelings and the motives behind their actions.

Having read this authors previous novel, I felt this was much better. It is not easy to deal with such an emotive subject and do it justice (pardon the pun!) but this author has achieved that and then some!

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Doodling by Jonathon Gould

This is a wonderful tale of a man – Neville – who found the world was moving too fast and fell off. He found himself in an asteroid field with all manner of quirky and interesting characters. Then he finds out the world is moving too fast and is going to leave its orbit and fly straight into his new found home and friends. Does Neville stop the world and save the asteroids? Well that would be telling wouldn't it?

This was a quirky little story. Neville mad me think a bit of Arthur Dent with his no nonsense approach to that which made no sense. It was funny in places and endearingly heart warming. Underneath it all was a deeper message to take things slowly and not let life rush you by.

I loved this. It is a nice quick read and would appeal to all ages I think.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

The Dying of the Light:End by Jason Kristopher

This is the story of the ultimate zombie apocalypse. A man survives a zombie outbreak in his home town. The whole town is destroyed, including his fiancee and stepson. He is the only survivor. He is asked to join an Army Special Task Force assigned to seek out and destroy the zombie threat. The secrets he learns there are far more horrifying than the job he is charged with undertaking.

This is the authors first novel I believe and it is an absolute cracker. The characters were very vivid and their emotions came through exceptionally well. Especially the baddest of bad guys, I really loved him! The nice thing about this book was the story was more focused on the fight and the relationships (good and bad) between the characters and not so much on the zombie gore. The story flowed at a good pace and I was kept interested throughout the whole book.

This was an excellent first novel from the author and I understand a sequel is in the works as an excerpt was included at the end of the book. If it is as good as this one then I shall most certainly be reading it!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review. 

Thursday, 29 September 2011

War Against the Walking Dead by Sean T Page

This is a survival guide to give you lifesaving tips in the event of a Zombie apocalypse. It is divided into 8 sections:-

Part 1 - Know Your Enemy - The Walking Dead
Part 2 - From Survival to Fightback
Part 3 - War Against the Walking Dead - Lessons From History
Part 4 - War Against the Walking Dead
Part 5 - Weapons of the War Against the Walking Dead
Part 6 - Tactics For War Against the Walking Dead
Part 7 - Victory over the Walking Dead
Part 8 - Further Information and Recommended Reading

It is written in a very informative manner and should be the go to guide on everybodys shelf. The author has included charts and diagrams and has backed everything up with words of wisdom from the Ministry of Zombies. It is written in a nice easy style and at no point did I feel it was too 'text book' for me.

I enjoyed this and will certainly keep it on my shelf as THE definitive reference book when the Apocalypse hits. For anyone who would like to have all the information to survive and overcome the Zombie Apocalypse in one easy to read volume - look no further.

Monday, 26 September 2011

How to Dump Your Boyfriend in the Men's Room and Other Short Stories) by Sibel Hodge

This is a collection of hysterical, laugh-out-loud short stories told as only Sibel can.

I really enjoyed these. Each story was screamingly funny with my significant other rolling his eyes at me each time I guffawed. 'Reading another Sibel are you? Say no more!' he said. My favourites were 'The S-Word and the Lady Garden', because it is especially relevant to me and 'Kismet' because it was both sweet and funny at the same time.

All in all yet another winner by Sibel who is fast becoming my favourite 'chick-lit' author. (As well as being the one who introduced me to the genre in the first place!)

Revenge by Mark Young

This is the story of an ex-detective haunted by the decisions of his past. He is now a professor of criminology living in virtual seclusion in a cabin in the woods on a Native American reservation. Now the past is creeping up on him and threatening those he loves and holds dear.

This moved along at a slow pace but never flagged. The story unfolded at a steady rate. There was always plenty going on as we learned more about the development of the back story of Travis' past as the story went on. I loved the background into the Perce Nez tribe. The author was very descriptive about the area and the rivers that surrounded it, I felt I was there with them. The last quarter of the book picked up pace and delivered a rocket of a climax. I was on the edge of my seat turning the pages to find out what happened!

This was a great read full of suspense and mystery and enough going on to keep readers interested.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

D.N.A. - Nothing Would Ever Be the Same by Ey Wade

This is a brilliant look at a dysfunctional family and how the daughter rose above it. The night before a family holiday Debney is told, yet again, she is not to come with them by her mum. They go off on holiday and she has a party. The police arrive at her house to tell her her family has been killed in a car accident. There is some mystery surrounding her brothers. She makes some bad choices and finds she's pregnant, what will she do?

This was a deeply moving story. I was near to tears in many places. the way Debney was treated at school, the aftermath of the accident and finally it all coming together. The triumvirate of friends in Debney, Nadine and Giante was wonderful. Most of the story was told in flashback and the story unfolded slowly but coherently. The pace of the story was perfect, and there were no confusing moments at all. The ending was fantastic, just how I hoped it would be, and warmed my heart.

This is a great story and I urge people to give it a go. Great for Young Adults and Adults alike.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Ink by Holly Hood

This is a story about a teenage girl leaving all she knows and moving to California with her Dad and twin brothers. She meets many odd people but none more so than the tattooed and muscular Slade. But is there more to him than meets the eye?

This was, in short, brilliant! Very different from what I was used to with the Wingless series. Hope was a strong heroine and Slade was great as the boy with a mysterious secret. Tucker was deliciously odious as was his Dad. When Slade's secret was revealed I was pleasantly surprised and thought, 'Wow, that was different!', and I loved it. Tucker and his Dad had a suitable comeuppance and the ending was just fantastic.

A very different, well put together novel by an author I have come to enjoy very much. I totally recommend this as a very enjoyable read.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

25 Random Facts by E J Mack

This is a story of a woman who catches up with a group of schoolfriends after 20 years through a social networking site. She is encouraged to play a new game doing the rounds called '25 Random Facts'. 20 years is a long time, and the woman is harbouring a devastating secret...

This was a great story. It gripped me from the first page and didn't let go until I had finished it. The secret was teased out slowly and the intrigue piled on in spades. When the secret is revealed the story then takes another turn and there is a huge twist in the tale that I didn't see coming!

This is a great novel of intrigue and has many twists and turns. Give it a chance, you won't regret it!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Double Occupancy by Elaine Raco Chase

This is the story of a burnt out journalist leaving her job and going to stay in Acapulco to recharge her batteries and start writing a novel. Due to a mix up another man comes to stay at the villa and things get complicated (and steamy!) from there.

I did enjoy this. It was slowly teased out with the last quarter of the book being quite steamy! Casey is feisty but terribly unsure of herself while Travis is the complete opposite. They are the stereotypical odd couple. The story tiptoes round the couple as they played cat and mouse with each other. At one point I was screaming 'Get on with it!'. But when they eventually did get together, wow! It was definetly a sizzler that's for sure! I did like the fact that it was a slow burner - I like that in an erotic novel. I prefer a bit of storyline to it.

All in all a great read, good for warming you up on a cold autumn evening.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

My Perfect Wedding by Sibel Hodge

This is technically the sequel to Fourteen Days Later but could be read as a standalone book. This time around Helen is on her way to Northern Cyprus with Kamen for a few days of rest and relaxation before her dream wedding. Only for Helen (being somewhat of a magnet for bad luck) it doesn't quite go to plan and it just gets worse from there...

This was hysterically funny. Helen once again lurches from one disaster to another, somehow finding herself in the process. It was lovely to be reacquainted with familiar characters. Once again the story rocketed along, and with the vivid descriptions of Northern Cyprus, I felt like I was there with them. It was a real page turner and I read almost all of it in one day. The ending was fabulous and just perfect for the story.

If you have read Fourteen Days Later you will love this. Even if you haven't you will love this. It is a nice light funny read that no one can help but to enjoy.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Win or Go Home by Daniel Clarke Smith

This is a thriller about an ex-doctor turned bounty hunter hired to track down a bail jumper.

This was good. It had me gripped from page one. The characters were solid and believable and not too many so as to confuse. The action was non stop. The story had a few different elements to it but they all linked together nicely and became clear as the story progressed. About 3/4 from the end, just when I thought I had everything tied up, the story took an unexpected turn and took me in a completely different direction to the one I was expecting. It was great!

All in all a good thriller with sound characters and plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order for me to review.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Self's Blossom by David Russell

This is the story of Selene, who is vain, insouciant and utterly self-absorbed. It is her mission to orchestrate a holiday romance. Having been hurt badly in the past (which we see through flash backs) she feels she must be completely in control of everything. She meets a young boy and has 'an encounter' with him but feels it's not what she was after. Later she meets Hudson and the chase is on!

This story was strange in that Selene wasn't really likeable as a heroine, but by the same token that made it unusual. The sights and sounds on the holiday were vivid and I felt I was there with them, particularly in the less well beaten tracks. The author has a way of descibing things that really put you in the story.

I enjoyed this although I felt more could have been made of Hudson and Selene's relationship. It was long drawn out and there wasn't really a satisfactory ending for me. Although having said that it was a good solid romance and I recommend it to anyone.

Friday, 9 September 2011

Back to Life by Holly Hood

This is the last book in the Wingless series. Set 3 years after the events of Letters to You. Eve has left Evan and set up a successful resurrection business with Kenny. Will all go smoothly, will Evan come back into Eve's life and will she be reconciled with Oliver, her son?

It was so easy for me to get into this, having read the other 5 books in the series. I was eager to find out what happened to Eve, Evan, Kenny et al. As ever the story flowed well, keeping me glued to the page for the whole book.

I am sad this is the end, as everyone feels like old friends now. It was a fantastic ending though and really the only one that would have done the series justice. Thank you Holly for writing such an amazing series!

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Pestilence by Gary Towner

This was amazing. A story about small town USA being used as an experiment in genetically altered seed. This mixed with toxic waste left over from WW2 creates swarms of mutant locusts and grasshoppers. The army are called in to nullify the threat but they are under orders to nullify more than the threat.

I could see this a major motion picture with perhaps Christopher Walken in the lead, it's just that good. It was quite long and took a while to build up....mostly in flashbacks but the pay off was worth it. When the action got going it was non stop. I found it extremely hard to put the book down.

I was gripped totally and I think anyone else that has an interest in this genre will like it too. Think 50's 'b' movie type thing. It was great!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it.

Friday, 2 September 2011

How do you Say Goodbye by Pam Logan

This was a fantastic book. Be warned though, it is a major tearjerker. It is a tale about Sam, a woman who had a shocking life and has found out she has an inoperable brain tumour. The story follows her journey to hook up with her old biker 'clan' finishing up at her friends grandparents. Her wish is to die by the beach so they take her to the beach where her friend has a house. More happens along the way but I don't want to spoil it.

I was moved by Sam's plight. I found myself laughing and crying with her. The love all her friends had for her was tangible and I felt it too.

It was a real page turner and got me from the first page. Read it, you won't be disappointed.

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Flidderbugs by Jonathon Gould

'For the Flidderbugs of the Krephiloff Tree all they had to worry about was how many points were on the leaves and who held the Shears. Now something is threatening the Tree and to get to the bottom of it they must put aside beliefs held since time immemorial.

I loved this little tale. It was short and sweet and I think it would appeal to all ages. I loved the characters, I could see the bugs in my head and I personified them!

All in all a great little story that I heartily recommend.'

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Summer Tide by Sean Gerard Leah

I wasn't sure about this in the beginning. I like an erotic novel to at least have some storyline to it. This seemed to just be an endless round of 2 and then 4 people constantly having sex!

At its heart it was a book about sexual exploration and liberation. Starting with voyeurism and then moving on to swinging and foursomes. I learnt alot about sex that I didn't know before so I suppose you could say it was educational as well! In the end it was just a little bit too steamy for me and perhaps a tad gratuitous. Fair play to the author though for having the courage to write in such a manner.

I received a complimentary copy of the book in order for me to review it.

Monday, 29 August 2011

Confessions of a Call Center Gal - Lisa Lim

I loved this. Hysterically funny, laugh out loud funny even. I could not put it down. It was also spot on in it's depiction of life in a call centre. Noone likes doing the job but someone has to right?

I loved the characters. Some of the names were amazing. The author has a keen eye for satire! I also like the backdrop of the 'will they, won't they' relationship of Mika and Maddy. it was there quietly simmering in the background with all the hilarity going on in the forefront.

I hope the author writes more as I thoroughly anjoyed this and I am sorry it has come to an end!

Saturday, 27 August 2011

In Leah's Wake by Terri Guiliano Long

This was an amazing story. The story of a young girl with a bright future who seemingly throws it all away to be with her lowlife boyfriend, and the fall out therein.

I was moved by the characters in this story. The mother trying to get over a drug addiction, the father working away from home most of the year and the sister missing her sister desperately. Finally the young girl herself running away from home and her whole life unravelling in front of her. I was gripped by the story, needing to find out how the story played out in the end.

A very moving story of a disfunctional family trying to pick up the pieces when their daughter goes off the rails.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Fourteen Days Later by Sibel Hodge

I'm really not sure where to start with this. I thought it was absolutely wonderful! Helen has decided to take up the challenge of trying a new thing every day for two weeks after being let down by her boyfriend. Along the way she learns new things about herself and finds love is sometimes nearer to home than you think.

I found it very very funny. I was laughing out loud in places and my partner was giving me some very odd looks. I so identified with Helen. I loved her clumsy disaster prone nature (very like myself!) it made her very endearing and lovable.

All in all another good one from this author. I am now off to read the sequel!

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Thank You for Flying Air Zoe by Erik Atwell

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it.

I really enjoyed this. It was a sort of coming of age story although the main protagonist was in her forties. It's about a woman's idea to reform her childhood school band and play at the famous Whisky a Go Go. I could very easily see this as a chick flick with someone like Gwyneth Paltrow in the lead. The lead character Zoe was great, she was just a little bit flaky but never gave up on her dream. All caused by a near death experience on an aeroplane.

I urge people to give this a go, it had some truly funny moments.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Fashion Police by Sibel Hodge

This is the first of the Amber Fox 'chick-lit' mystery series.

I read these out of order but as it happens each of them can be read as stand-alone stories. This is a very funny book. Amber Fox has been thrown out of the police force and is now working for her ex-fiancées insurance company. There are four cases to be sorted out, one of which involves a high profile fashion designer. All the cases end up being linked in ways you would never imagine. Amber seems to lurch from misadventure to comic misadventure, somehow maintaining dignity and sanity. She is chased by the mob and is in love with two men. Whoever said life was easy?

I found this very funny. There were some laugh out loud moments. I implore anyone reading this to have some tissues handy, you will need them after laughing so hard!

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Diary of the Displaced by Glynn James

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it.

This was an interesting premise for a book. Man wakes up in the dark, not knowing where he is or how he got there, he finds a book and pen and starts to write a journal of his time there. I really enjoyed this. There were some genuinely creepy moments and also some laugh out loud moments. The description of James' experiences I felt were very true to life and I felt the fear he was feeling as he tried to work out how or why he was where he was. The ending was good and left it open for more to come as I understand it is the first in a series.

In short this is a good one, if you like this sort of thing, I suggest you give it a go. It's not very long, but you will find yourself unable to put it down once you start!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Letters to You by Holly Hood

Again this picks up where the last left off. Eve has been hit by a truck and disappeared. Is she OK or not?

Once again it was easy to slip into the lives of Eve, Evan, Kenny et al. I thought this being the fifth book in the series I would know what to expect. But no! This time around things were somewhat darker. There was more action and key characters has personality turnarounds.

Once again for me it was a complete page turner. I couldn't put it down and loved every minute of it. I thoroughly recommend this and hope everyone reading it enjoys it as much as I did.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Fatal Exchange by Russell Blake

As this book started it seemed like two different stories. On one hand a high-end counterfeit operation and on the other a serial killer stalking bicycle delivery women. As the book went on though it became clear that these two threads were linked by a single person. It was a cleverly drawn out tale and I could not put the book down.

Be warned however, it is not for the faint hearted. There are some pretty graphic images of torture but they are well within the context of the story. I liked the character links, and the way everything came together neatly at the end. I was more than satisifed with the ending although sad as I had enjoyed it so much I didn't want it to end!

All in all I heartily recommend this. A thrill a minute rollercoaster of a thriller.

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

My Novel Affair by Autumn Rosen

Let me start by issuing a warning. This book is screamingly funny. It should come with a disclaimer – 'Warning – This book may induce instantaneous bouts of out-loud mirth. Take care reading in public places!' I was reading this on the bus and I got some very funny looks, I can tell you!

The idea of a story within a story is refreshing one and works very well. The characters are larger than life and vibrant. The juxtaposition of the story (within the story) and the real life element was very skilfully and cleverly done.

My hats off to the author for she has pulled off another winner. I loved and enjoyed this and hope that everyone else reading it enjoys it as much as I did!

Monday, 15 August 2011

Parker's Price by Ann Bruce

I enjoyed this. It's billed as erotic but it isn't in your face. In fact I got nearly half way through before there was any sort of steaminess. I loved the slow burn of Parker and Dean's relationship, and I was amused to note the use of safe sex. Again I liked the fact that it was a proper story and built up to the steamy scenes, you weren't just thrown into them right away. I also liked the fact that there was a psycho ex-lover side story running in the background, it made it all tie together very nicely.

I received a complimetary copy of this book in order to review it.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Chasing Destiny by Linda Eble Swain

This was a wonderful story. Magic, witches, shape-shifters, curses and at its heart a love story.

The story was well told. I found myself drinking in the images of Avalon and once or twice lost myself in the sheer wonder and beauty of it. There were a couple of tear jerking moments but they were tempered with happiness on the other hand. There was some action in the middle and towards the end and I was willing the good guys to defeat the enemy!

I so enjoyed this and I hope anyone who loves witches and magic gets the enjoyment as I did.

Saturday, 13 August 2011

In The Driver's Seat -- Interstate Trucking, a Journey by Marc Mayfield

I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to review it. I wasn't sure what to expect from a 'trucking memoir'. What I got was a fascinating insight into life on the road. From the beginning of his career to the end, we are teated to a candid view of the authors life. Written part as anecdote and part diary, it was funny, moving and very informative. We learn it can be lonely, humbling, difficult but above all life changing being a Trucker.

I recommend this, as it is a good read. Never mind that it is a 'trucking memoir', it is a very funny and informative book.