Thursday, 28 February 2019

Review: Binti: The Complete Trilogy - Nnedi Okorafor

Includes a brand-new Binti story!
Collected for the first time in an omnibus edition, the Hugo- and Nebula-award-winning Binti trilogy, the story of one extraordinary girl's journey from her home to distant Oomza University.

In her Hugo- and Nebula-winning novella, Nnedi Okorafor introduced us to Binti, a young Himba girl with the chance of a lifetime: to attend the prestigious Oomza University. Despite her family's concerns, Binti's talent for mathematics and her aptitude with astrolabes make her a prime candidate to undertake this interstellar journey.

But everything changes when the jellyfish-like Medusae attack Binti's spaceship, leaving her the only survivor. Now, Binti must fend for herself, alone on a ship full of the beings who murdered her crew, with five days until she reaches her destination.

There is more to the history of the Medusae--and their war with the Khoush--than first meets the eye. If Binti is to survive this voyage and save the inhabitants of the unsuspecting planet that houses Oomza Uni, it will take all of her knowledge and talents to broker the peace.

Collected now for the first time in omnibus form, follow Binti's story in this groundbreaking sci-fi trilogy.

Binti Trilogy:
Binti
Home
The Night Masquerade
Binti: The Complete Trilogy (bind up containing all 3 novellas plus an extra short story in Binti trilogy)

Visit Nnedi Okorafor's website for more information

Review:
Binti: The Complete Trilogy is a bind up containing all three novellas (Binti, Home and The Night Masquerade) in Nnedi Okorafor's award winning Binti trilogy plus an extra short story called Sacred Fire. I'll review each of the stories separately but I've really enjoyed the whole series so it's definitely one I'm happy to recommend!

Binti:

Binti is a member of the Himba tribe, a group of people who live in a dessert region of their planet and who have a strong connection to each other and their home. She is the first member of the tribe to be offered a place at the galaxy famous Oomza University, somewhere only the very best of the best are invited to study. It goes against all traditions for Binti to leave her homeland and it's something her family would never allow so she has to sneak off in the middle of the night to catch the spaceship on time. When the ship comes under attack by a jellyfish like alien species Binti is the only one on board who has a chance to communicate with the Meduse and try to broker peace before they arrive at the university.

I thought this story was a great introduction to the series although I really would have loved for it to be longer! I loved Binit's character, she's smart and resourceful but also nervous as she leaves her homeland for the first time and you could feel her bewilderment as she first arrived in a big city which was completely alien to her. The story shows all to well how much prejudice humans can feel towards people who are a little bit different to themselves but I liked the way Binti handled that and was glad to see her start to make friends with the other students on board the ship.

Where it fell down a little for me was after the Meduse came on board and slaughtered nearly everyone on board including Binti's new friends. I was really curious about the Meduse's anatomy & could easily picture them almost floating around the ship but it was a little hard to believe she was able to talk them out of their plans to destroy the university so quickly. I think I just needed a little bit more time to see Binti and Okwu go from enemies to allies, that would have made the turnaround feel a bit more believable and realistic.

I am really curious to see where the story goes from here though and I've got very high hopes for the series as a whole.

Sacred Fire:

This short story is set several weeks after Binti and Okwu arrive at the Oomza University. Binti is struggling to come to terms with everything that happened on the journey and is quite obviously, and very understandably, suffering from PTSD and flashbacks. She had dreamed of attending the university but nothing is quite what she expected. She's treated as an outsider even by the other humans because they consider the Himba people to be lesser than themselves, people don't understand her culture and they also blame her for surviving the massacre on the ship when many of their friends and family members were killed.

It's not all bad though, Binti is enjoying her studies and she's even starting to make a couple of friends so there is hope for her future. This was an enjoyable short and definitely left me looking forward to continuing the series.

Home:

Binti and Okwu have been studying at the Oomza University for a year now and it's time for Binti to return home and face her family before continuing her studies. She is considered a hero by some for preventing the meduse from attacking the university but others consider her a traitor for supposedly aligning with them against the humans. Her family haven't forgiven her for leaving them and travelling so far from home either so it's set to be a difficult reunion.

I have to admit I was surprised and a little disappointed when I realised that most of this story wouldn't be set at the university because I was so interested in all the different alien creatures that attend. But then we get to travel back to Binti's homeland and find out all about her family's tribal traditions and I was so swept up in the story that I didn't have time to be upset.

This isn't an easy journey for Binti, her family are resentful that she left and to be honest I kind of hated most of her siblings for the way they treated her when she returned but I loved Binti for standing up for what she wanted and being brave enough to choose her own path in life. It was hard for her to come home and realise how much she has changed while the people she left behind carried on in the same familiar paths, she no longer feels like she fits in with her family which was heartbreaking, especially since she doesn't feel much like she fits in at university either.

She does find out a lot about her father's side of the family though which I absolutely loved, they are a nomad tribe who were much more open to change and much happier to welcome Binti into their circle. She had to face some difficult truths about the fact that while people are prejudiced against her and the Himba tribe, the Himba, herself included, also have their own prejudices against the nomadic dessert tribes even though they are blood relations. I felt like Binti really grew a lot emotionally in this instalment and I'm excited to see where her journey takes her next.

The Night Masquerade:

As much as I've enjoyed this series overall I have to admit that The Night Masquerade wasn't my favourite instalment and I was left feeling a little disappointed about the way things ended.

The previous instalment ended when Binti realised that Okwu and her family were under attack and this one kicks off with her desperate journey across the desert with the help of her guide Mwinyi. Binti is unable to contact anyone she left behind but she knows something awful has happened and that the Khoush have broken the treaty so it's a race against time for her to get home in time to help the people she cares about.

It's hard to go into too much detail but what Binti uncovers is a shocking betrayal that should have left her devastated. I think one of the problems I had with this story was how quickly she seemed to brush everything off and start trying to rebuild the peace between the Khoush and the Meduse. I get that she was trying to prevent her village being destroyed in an all out war between the other two groups but considering everything the Khoush had done at that point I would have expected her to be a little less invested in the peace process. I guess she's a better woman than I am though!

Really my main issue with this novella was how unresolved so many things were, we get some answers but a lot of things are left open ended and this really didn't feel like the end of a series. If there was another book to come I wouldn't have been so disappointed by that but as the end of a trilogy it felt unsatisfying. Especially the way the author played with our emotions only to magically fix things moments later. I think after loving the first two stories so much I had high expectations for a grand finale and it just wasn't as epic as I hoped.

Source: Received from publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Hardback bind up of the complete series / or the three novellas are also available separately:

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Review: Betrayal in Death - J.D. Robb

He was a virtuoso of murder, a performer par excellence. He was, always, the star of the show...

Homicide lieutenant Eve Dallas hates hosting parties. Trapped in a plunging dress and her old anxieties, she is way out of her comfort zone. But then a maid is found in an upstairs room - brutally murdered. Eve snaps into action.

Sly Yost is refined, cultured and an elite assassin. A killer with startling connections to police politics, he is viciously confident. And Eve has upset him.

Faced with the added complication of a suspicious arrival much closer to home - an Irishman in a petal-green suit - Eve must face the terrifying possibility that the real target may in fact be her dazzling billionaire husband, Roarke.

In Death Series:
Naked in Death
Glory in Death
Immortal in Death
Rapture in Death
Ceremony in Death
Vengeance in Death
Holiday in Death
Midnight in Death (Novella)
Conspiracy in Death
Loyalty in Death
Witness in Death
Judgement in Death
Betrayal in Death
Interlude in Death (Novella)
Seduction in Death
Reunion in Death
Purity in Death
Portrait in Death
Imitation in Death
Big Jack (Novella in the Remember When Anthology)
Divided in Death
Visions in Death
Survivor in Death
Origin in Death
Memory in Death
Haunted in Death (Novella)
Born in Death
Innocent in Death
Eternity in Death (Novella)
Creation in Death
Strangers in Death
Salvation in Death
Ritual in Death (Novella)
Promises in Death
Kindred in Death
Missing in Death (Novella)
Fantasy in Death
Indulgence in Death
Possession in Death (Novella)
Treachery in Death
New York to Dallas
Chaos in Death (Novella)
Celebrity in Death
Delusion in Death
Calculated in Death
Thankless in Death
Taken in Death (Novella)
Concealed in Death
Festive in Death
Obsessed in Death
Devoted in Death
Wonderment in Death (Novella)
Brotherhood in Death
Apprentice in Death
Echoes in Death
Secrets in Death
Dark in Death
Leverage in Death
Connections in Death (2019)

Visit J.D. Robb's website for more information.

Review:
There is an assassin in New York and he's currently targeting people who work for Roarke. The FBI know his name, they've linked him to over 40 homicides but even though they've been hunting him for years they've never even come close to catching him. But now he's made his first big mistake, he's going after someone that Eve Dallas cares about and she won't stop until she's brought him down, especially when she thinks her husband might be one of his targets!

I know this is a huge series and I'm not even halfway through it yet but I still find it really impressive that J.D. Robb has managed to keep this series so fresh and interesting twelve books in. Eve and Roarke's relationship is always evolving, they both had pretty messed up childhoods so neither of them has much experience when it comes to seeing healthy relationships. It means they both make mistakes and mess up occasionally but no matter what happens between them their love is just getting stronger and they have an unbreakable bond. I love that even when they have a blow up once they calm down they discuss things and try to understand each other's points of view.

Betrayal in Death was interesting because we got to see an old face from Roarke's past, an old friend from his childhood is in town and looking to reconnect and he has plenty of stories to share. I enjoyed seeing a different side to Roarke through him and it was fun to see Mick's shock at finding Roarke married to a cop. The murders start hitting a little too close to home for Eve and that makes her all the more determined to find the killer and put him behind bars but this guy is smart and he's slippery so she's going to have to work fast if she wants to outwit him, especially with the FBI hovering on her tail trying to steal her bust. She's also dealing with her broken hearted aide Peabody who is currently fighting with McNab, something Eve is extremely irritated about. Another fab book in the series that left me wanting more so I'm off to start the next one!

Source: Purchased

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Tuesday, 26 February 2019

Review: Lost and Found - Lexi Blake

Owen Shaw and his “brothers” lost everything, their entire existence erased. Science had robbed he and all the Lost Boys of their memories and their past, but not their future. Hunted by every intelligence agency in the world, they are focused on two goals: find a cure for what was done to them and ensure that the technology that ruined their lives doesn’t get out into the world. Rebecca Walsh might be the key to achieving both. Owen has been studying her closely, living in her building, and he cannot resolve how such a beautiful, giving woman could have helped design the evil process that destroyed his past.

Dr. Rebecca Walsh has dedicated her life to researching the secrets of the mind. Her atmospheric rise in her field was fueled by the horror of watching her mother’s agonizing journey into madness at the hands of a disease with no cure. She vowed to never rest until she finds it. But obsession takes a heavy toll, and when Owen moves into her building she realizes how much of her life she has missed out on. Owen opens her eyes to a whole new world, filled with joy, laughter, and possibly love.

Owen and Rebecca grow closer, unraveling more about each other and the mysteries surrounding her connection to Hope McDonald. As the sinister forces working against the Lost Boys descend on Toronto, secrets long buried are uncovered that could shatter the bonds holding the Lost Boys together and cost Rebecca her life.

Masters & Mercenaries: The Forgotten Series:
Lost Hearts (Memento Mori) (Originally published as Memento Mori)
Lost and Found
Lost in You (August 2019)

Visit Lexi Blake's website for more information

Review:
Lost and Found is the second book in Lexi Blake's spin off from the Masters and Mercenaries series about the lost boys who were rescued by Taggart and McKay. These men lost everything when they had their memories wiped by a sadistic scientist and they're still trying to find out information about their pasts and exactly what happened to them. Owen may have no memory of it but he knows that he betrayed the rest of his team when trying to save his mother and sister from the scientist who held them all captive. He's been trying to make amends ever since but he worries that his brothers will never forgive him for the mistakes he made or fully trust him again, partly because he can't forgive himself.

The team is focused on trying to find a cure for their memory loss but they also want to ensure that details of the experiments conducted on them and the drugs that Hope McDonald created are destroyed so they can't be used to harm anyone else in the future. That's where Dr Rebecca Walsh comes in. Rebecca is a highly intelligent and well respected doctor who specialises in research into potential cures for Alzheimer's disease. Her research could be the key to unlocking their memories but since she worked with Hope McDonald in the past the team are unsure if she can be trusted. Now it's up to Owen and the others to get close enough to Rebecca to figure out which side she's on, and to find out exactly how much she knows about Hope's experiments.

I know some readers will be familiar with these characters from the original Masters and Mercenaries series but as someone who hasn't had a chance to read those books yet (I've been too busy catching up on Lexi's rereleases of her Bliss and Texas Sirens series!) I am still thoroughly enjoying this spin off. I'm really enjoying getting to know all of the Lost Boys and I have to say Owen might just be my new favourite. Owen is haunted by his past, he betrayed his team to save his mother and sister and they were murdered anyway so he lost the respect of his brothers and his family in one fell swoop, yet he can't remember any of it. He can't properly grieve for the family he doesn't remember and it's hard to win back the trust of the people he should be closest to when he can't even remember why he didn't trust them to help him. There is a real vulnerable side to Owen that made it impossible not to root for him to succeed in his mission.

Rebecca didn't exactly have a normal childhood, a genius who flew through school and college far faster than her peers she never spent much time with children her own age and was always focused on her studies instead. When her mother became sick she put everything on hold to help care for her and watching her slowly being destroyed by Alzheimer's disease left Rebecca determined to find a cure. She is super focused on her career and doesn't trust people easily so it surprises her when she feels such an instant connection to Owen. He's keeping a lot of secrets though so even though the attraction between them is real and intense things are bound to go horribly wrong when she discovers the truth. I loved how open Rebecca was about her desires and what she wanted from her life, she was willing to take risks in both her career and personal relationships but as her past is about to catch up with her she suddenly finds herself in danger. Owen is the first person she wants to turn to for help but there are some things she can't quite bring herself to tell him about so things are going to get complicated fast.

This was an action packed story with lots going on but it never lost focus on the romance, I loved spending time with all the lost boys and getting to learn more about their background and I also really enjoyed the mystery of what was happening in Rebecca's life. Rebecca and Owen make a brilliant couple, they both make mistakes but when it comes down to it they trust each other enough to work together. Rebecca is thrown into the deep end when she realises what Hope McDonald was up to with her research but her reaction was totally believable and after her initial shock starts to fade she comes out fighting. Things are really starting to move forward now and I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series.

Source: Received from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Blog Tour: Lost and Found - Lexi Blake


Lost and Found
Masters and Mercenaries: The Forgotten, Book 2
By Lexi Blake
Coming February 26, 2019

Owen Shaw and his “brothers” lost everything, their entire existence erased. Science had robbed he and all the Lost Boys of their memories and their past, but not their future. Hunted by every intelligence agency in the world, they are focused on two goals: find a cure for what was done to them and ensure that the technology that ruined their lives doesn’t get out into the world. Rebecca Walsh might be the key to achieving both. Owen has been studying her closely, living in her building, and he cannot resolve how such a beautiful, giving woman could have helped design the evil process that destroyed his past.

Dr. Rebecca Walsh has dedicated her life to researching the secrets of the mind. Her atmospheric rise in her field was fueled by the horror of watching her mother’s agonizing journey into madness at the hands of a disease with no cure. She vowed to never rest until she finds it. But obsession takes a heavy toll, and when Owen moves into her building she realizes how much of her life she has missed out on. Owen opens her eyes to a whole new world, filled with joy, laughter, and possibly love.

Owen and Rebecca grow closer, unraveling more about each other and the mysteries surrounding her connection to Hope McDonald. As the sinister forces working against the Lost Boys descend on Toronto, secrets long buried are uncovered that could shatter the bonds holding the Lost Boys together and cost Rebecca her life.

AVAILABLE NOW



EXCERPT:

“Becca.” Owen’s voice was low. “Concentrate on me, on our conversation. You’ve done incredibly well. You’ve been able to hold it off, but this has gone on far longer than you ever should have been expected to handle it. This elevator is tight. I feel it, too, but we can hold off the anxiety together.”

She doubted very much the man in front of her was anxious. He looked solid, like the kind of man who took whatever came his way and simply dealt with it. He wouldn’t have needed two freaking years to figure out what he wanted. He would have signed his divorce papers and moved on, not hiding in his work.

It struck her forcibly that she might never have met a man like Owen Shaw. Her childhood had been fairly sheltered. She’d constantly been surrounded by intellectuals, men and women who were far more concerned with their work than anything else.

The ground beneath her shifted and the elevator dropped what felt like ten feet, but she knew in her head it was mere inches. Her heart rate tripled, and she grabbed on to the closest thing she could—him.

His arms went around her, holding her up, and she heard it. He was so tall that her head naturally rested on his chest, and she could hear his heart beating in rapid time.

He was nervous.

The phone rang and Owen cursed, reaching out to grab it. The shaft was so small, he didn’t have to let her go to grasp it.

“What the bloody hell is happening, Colin?”

She could hear his voice over the line. “Sorry. So sorry. We had to lower the shaft the tiniest bit. I should have warned you. It’s not going to fall. Just needed to reposition to get to the problem. Not long now. Another half an hour or so and I’ll have you right out of there.”

“If you do that again, do you know what I’m going to do to you, Colin?”

There was a pause over the line and she could practically hear Colin’s gulp. “Write my father a tersely worded letter of complaint?”

“No, I’m going to pull your heart out through your throat and then I’ll shove it back up your arse.”

“You sound very much like Liam Neeson in that movie.”

“Liam Neeson is Irish. I’m a Scot. I assure you what I’ll do to you will make you run into Liam Neeson’s arms and beg him to save you.” He reached back and hung up the phone with a resounding clang.

His arm went back around her. “It’s going to be all right. They’ll move faster now. So you’ve taken a sabbatical from men.”

She breathed him in, loving how he smelled. Were men supposed to smell so good?

She could feel herself relax as he held her. She’d known him for three hours. She shouldn’t let him hold her like this.

And why the fuck not? Because it wasn’t smart? Because he might think she wanted something she shouldn’t?

She was human. Why shouldn’t she want him? Because society told her that good girls didn’t make out with guys they’d just met in an elevator?

Society sucked, and she wasn’t a good girl. When her husband had tried to put his name on her work, she’d told him to fuck off and write his own paper. When he’d cheated on her, she’d walked away.

She was single.

God, was he single?

She stepped back.

“What’s wrong?” Owen asked.

“Do you have a girlfriend?”

His lips curled up in the sweetest grin, as though he knew exactly why she was asking that question. “No, love. I don’t have a girlfriend and I don’t have a wife.”

He was single. She was single.

The moment lengthened between them.

He stepped back. “I’m sorry. I’m coming on way too strong.”

He wasn’t. He’d been gentlemanly, friendly. Up until the last couple of moments, he hadn’t put a hand on her or leered. She could feel his attraction. It was there in the warm way he looked at her, in the set of his shoulders, relaxed earlier and tense now that he’d touched her. He was thinking about the same thing she was.

“I’m very nervous, Owen. My logical mind knows that it’s far more likely for me to die getting hit by lightning than in an elevator, even one that’s stuck.” Unfortunately, her logical mind was slowly losing control of her dumbass lizard brain.

“Will talking help?” Owen asked. “Because I’m willing to do that. Or whatever you need to take your mind off things.”

There was a wealth of promise in those words. Dirty and sweet at the same time. They’d shared her wine, passing it back and forth between them, her lips touching the same place his had been moments before. When she’d drank after him, she’d thought about kissing him.

It had been too long. Two years was way too long to go without sex.

They had a half an hour or so. At least that’s what Colin—who might be murdered soon by Owen Shaw—said. She even thought his name was sexy.

What exactly would it hurt if she did kiss him? If she touched him and let him touch her? Hell, what would it hurt if she fucked him? They were both single, both a little needy. They had some time to kill. They’d done everything else.

“I would like to kiss you.” If he didn’t want her to, he could say no and they could find something else to do. She wasn’t going to be embarrassed because some guy didn’t want her. Some stunningly gorgeous guy. Some really funny, sexy guy. After all, she wouldn’t see him after this. She’d never seen him before. He’d told her he was moving in, but she went into work early and came home late. He was a bodyguard, so he likely worked odd hours and traveled a lot.

He was safe. She could open that door, enjoy herself, and then close it again. Owen Shaw could be her first really good memory in a long time, the start of many because it was time to get serious about finding some joy and balance in her life.

But only if he wanted some joy, too.

He moved back, placing his back against the elevator wall, the sweetest smile lighting up his face. “You have no idea how much I want you to kiss me. I’m right here, love. Do your worst.”

He was letting her make the first move. And probably the second. And the third. He was obviously a careful man. It would be easier if he took over, but he was right. This needed to be her choice, and she had to make the move.

She’d been the girl who’d told her parents at the age of five that kindergarten was boring and she wanted to move through the grades until she found something challenging. When they’d told her they wanted her to slow down and enjoy her childhood, she’d gone on strike until the teachers at her school begged her parents to let them move her up.

She was the girl who’d put it all on hold to take care of her mother, too.

She wasn’t the girl who didn’t take what she wanted, and she wanted Owen Shaw.

“It’s been a long time since I did this.” But her body was already heating up. Her body remembered. Her marriage might have sucked, but the sex had been fairly good. It had been the reason she’d married him. She’d gotten used to regular, good sex.

She’d get used to it again, just on her terms this time.

“Somehow, I think you’ll remember,” he said. “You play all you like. Stop when you want to.”

She’d been right about him. He was a careful man. “And if I don’t want to stop?”

“Then you should be happy I’m a man who believes in being prepared.”

TRAILER:




About Lexi Blake:

NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn't until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.

FACEBOOK / TWITTER / WEBSITE / AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

Monday, 25 February 2019

Review: Sixth Grave on the Edge - Darynda Jones

Few things in life can come between a grim reaper and her coffee, but the sexy, sultry son of Satan is one of them. Now that Reyes Farrow has asked for her hand, Charley Davidson feels it's time to learn more about his past, but Reyes is reluctant to open up. When the official FBI file of his childhood abduction lands in her lap, Charley decides to go behind her mysterious beau’s back and conduct her own investigation. Because what could go wrong?

Unfortunately, another case has fallen into her lap—one with dangerous implications. Some very insistent men want Charley to hunt down a witness who is scheduled to testify against their boss, a major player in the local crime syndicate. If Charley doesn't come up with an address in 48 hours, the people closest to her will start to disappear.

Add to that a desperate man in search of the soul he lost in a card game, a dogged mother determined to find the ghost of her son, and a beautiful, young Deaf boy haunted by his new ability to see the departed as clearly as he sees the living, and Charley has her hands full. The fact that Reyes has caught on to her latest venture only adds fuel to the inferno that he is. Good thing for Charley she's used to multi-tasking and always up for a challenge…especially when that challenge comes in the form of Reyes Farrow.

Charley Davidson Series:
First Grave on the Right
For I Have Sinned (Novella)
Second Grave on the Left
Third Grave Dead Ahead
Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet
Fifth Grave Past the Light
Shimmer (Free Short Story)
Glow (Free Short Story)
Sixth Grave on the Edge
Seventh Grave and No Body
Eighth Grave After Dark
Brighter Than the Sun (Novella)
The Dirt on the Ninth Grave
The Curse of Tenth Grave
A Very Charley Christmas (Free Short Story)
Eleventh Grave in Moonlight
The Trouble with Twelfth Grave
Summoned to Thirteenth Grave

Visit Darynda Jones' website for more information

Review:
I know Charley's sense of humour isn't for everyone but I love her and lets face it if you don't like her then I'm pretty sure you'll have given up this series long before you reached book six. Charley may be more than a little insane but has a heart of gold and she's willing to put herself in danger to help even strangers so it's no wonder she has loyal friends. I love her friendship with Cookie and her daughter Amber, I love how protective her uncle Ubie is of her and of course, like pretty much the rest of the female population, I'm obsessed with her nigh-fiancé Reyes. If there was one thing I found slightly frustrating in this book it was her holding out so long before giving Reyes an answer but since they were having fun teasing each other about it I was willing to overlook that.

As always Charley has a lot on her plate, she's still trying to find out more about her Reaper abilities, she's got a client who accidentally sold his soul to the devil, there's the naked dead guy who won't get out of her car, Cookie and Ubie are being stubborn so she's trying to push them together, she's also worrying about Rocket's prediction for Reyes, looking into Reyes' human family and if that wasn't enough she's held at gunpoint by two men who want her to find a woman who is currently in the witness protection program. Yes, there's definitely a lot going on in this one and the way things are going it looks like the series is just going to get even more intense from her onwards.

It's not all action though, there are some great moments between Charley and Reyes as they try to figure out how their relationship is going to work, we get some revelations about her ghostly sidekick Angel that brought a tear to my eye, and there is definitely something strange going on with Charley's father. I'm still not very happy with him so I really want to see more of a redemption arc as we start to unravel his secrets. As long as that arc doesn't include a happy ending for Charley's step-mother I'll be okay with it, that woman is a monster and she does NOT deserve any kind of forgiveness from Charley. Especially after the way she acted in this instalment!

Anyway, I think that's enough to show that I'm still loving this series so I'm signing off here so I can get started on book seven.

Source: Received from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Other reviews of this book:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Review: Glow - Darynda Jones

Glow is the sultry short story, Shimmer, as told through the eyes of Reyes Farrow.

You can read this story for free on Darynda Jones' website here

The story is set after Fifth Grave Past the Light and does contain spoilers for the first 5 books.

Charley Davidson Series:
First Grave on the Right
For I Have Sinned (Novella)
Second Grave on the Left
Third Grave Dead Ahead
Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet
Fifth Grave Past the Light
Shimmer (Free Short Story)
Glow (Free Short Story)
Sixth Grave on the Edge
Seventh Grave and No Body
Eighth Grave After Dark
Brighter Than the Sun (Novella)
The Dirt on the Ninth Grave
The Curse of Tenth Grave
A Very Charley Christmas (Free Short Story)
Eleventh Grave in Moonlight
The Trouble with Twelfth Grave
Summoned to Thirteenth Grave

Visit Darynda Jones' website for more information

Review:
Glow is a free short story that can be read on Darynda Jones' website here: http://www.daryndajones.com/glow-by-darynda-jones-shimmer-as-told-through-the-eyes-of-reyes-farrow/

It's actually the same scene from the free short story Shimmer (you can read that one here: http://www.daryndajones.com/shimmer-a-charley-davidson-short-story/ if you haven't already and I'd recommend reading it before Glow) but this time it's told from Reyes' POV.

Yes you heard me, we get a scene from Reyes' point of view! I was over the moon when I realised that and I now love him more than ever! It's a really cute little Christmas scene between the two of them, plenty of humour, a lot of heat and all round just a fab little freebie.

Please be aware that these two stories contain a MAJOR spoiler for Fifth Grave Past the Light though so whatever you do don't read them until after you hit that point in the series!

Source: Read for free on the author's website

Other reviews of this book:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Review: Shimmer - Darynda Jones

Shimmer is a Charley Davidson Christmas Short Story that can be read for free on Darynda Jones' website here

The story is set after Fifth Grave Past the Light and does contain spoilers for the first 5 books.

For more, the author released Glow, which is the same story but through the eyes of Reyes Farrow.

Charley Davidson Series:
First Grave on the Right
For I Have Sinned (Novella)
Second Grave on the Left
Third Grave Dead Ahead
Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet
Fifth Grave Past the Light
Shimmer (Free Short Story)
Glow (Free Short Story)
Sixth Grave on the Edge
Seventh Grave and No Body
Eighth Grave After Dark
Brighter Than the Sun (Novella)
The Dirt on the Ninth Grave
The Curse of Tenth Grave
A Very Charley Christmas (Free Short Story)
Eleventh Grave in Moonlight
The Trouble with Twelfth Grave
Summoned to Thirteenth Grave

Visit Darynda Jones' website for more information

Review:
Shimmer is a free short story that can be read on Darynda Jones' website here: http://www.daryndajones.com/shimmer-a-charley-davidson-short-story/

It's a really cute Christmas scene between Charley and Reyes that made me smile and swoon in equal measures. I love these little extra snippets that some authors choose to give their fans and this just made me even more excited to continue reading the rest of the series.

Please be aware that this story contains MAJOR spoilers for Fifth Grave Past the Light though so whatever you do don't read it until after you hit that point in the series!

Source: Read for free on the author's website

Other reviews of this book:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Sunday, 24 February 2019

Review: Fifth Grave Past the Light - Darynda Jones

The fifth in this fun and sexy New York Times bestselling paranormal series...

Charley Davidson may not look like your everyday, run-of-the-mill grim reaper, but she has vowed to reap grimness wherever she goes despite this unfortunate fact. Sadly, she gets sidetracked when the sexy, sultry son of Satan, Reyes Farrow, moves in next door. As he is the main suspect in her arson case, she has vowed to stay away from him until she can find out the truth.

However, when dead women start appearing in her apartment—lost, confused and terrified beyond reason—Charley has no choice but to ask for Reyes' help, especially when it becomes apparent that her own sister, Gemma, is the serial killer's next target. With his ability to observe incorporeally, surely he can find out who's responsible. And even if he can't, he is the one man alive who could protect Gemma no matter who or what came at her. But he wants something in return: Charley. All of her—body and soul. And to keep her sister safe, it is a price she might be willing to pay...

Charley Davidson Series:
First Grave on the Right
For I Have Sinned (Novella)
Second Grave on the Left
Third Grave Dead Ahead
Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet
Fifth Grave Past the Light
Shimmer (Free Short Story)
Glow (Free Short Story)
Sixth Grave on the Edge
Seventh Grave and No Body
Eighth Grave After Dark
Brighter Than the Sun (Novella)
The Dirt on the Ninth Grave
The Curse of Tenth Grave
A Very Charley Christmas (Free Short Story)
Eleventh Grave in Moonlight
The Trouble with Twelfth Grave
Summoned to Thirteenth Grave

Visit Darynda Jones' website for more information

Review:
I am falling head over heels with this series and this fifth book was definitely my favourite so far. Charley is back on top form after a bit of a confidence crisis in the last instalment, she's dealt with everything that happened to her and has managed to get her life back on track. Reyes is now her neighbour which leads to a lot of fun flirting via post-it note, for once they're on the same page relationship wise and things are definitely hotting up between them. She's also learning more about her abilities as a Grim Reaper which comes in handy when she almost gets accidentally shot by her best friend.

This book we see Charley's house being invaded by an ever increasing number of dead women, it looks like Charley has a serial killer on her hands but if the murders have been happening for over 20 years why has it taken so long for the victims to show up on her doorstep? Charley will do whatever it takes to find justice for these women but they're all so traumatised that she's finding it difficult to communicate with them so this case is looking more complicated than ever.

I love the humour in this series, hardly a page goes by without me laughing out loud so this probably isn't the best series to read in public but it's definitely one that cheers me up and leaves me smiling. As much as I love Charley and her sarcastic sense of humour I also really love so many of the people around her, her uncle Bob, Cookie, Artemis, even Swopes when he's not being an idiot. Best of all is Reyes though, that man is sex personified and the way he is so totally head over heels for Charley makes me swoon every time. That they have fantastic chemistry has never been in doubt but in this book we finally see them talking more too, their relationship makes huge strides forward here and I loved every minute of it. I can't wait to find out what happens next so I'm going to be diving straight into the next book after I finish this review & I have a feeling I'm about to start another series binge read!

Source: Received from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Other reviews of this book:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Saturday, 23 February 2019

Review: Judgement in Death - J.D. Robb

She stood in Purgatory and studied death. The blood and gore of it, the ferocity of its glee.

An elite drinking club - Purgatory - where the sinful commit more sin. And where a young, undercover cop has met a grisly end: bludgeoned to death, his body scattered with thirty silver pieces. A message is being sent to a shocked police force. And homicide lieutenant Eve Dallas is furious.

But things are not as they seem. Helped by her billionaire husband's extensive hacking skills, Eve identifies a sickening web of corruption that has taken over the entire police department. Dangerous secrets are being hidden and time is running out.

An old enemy and an old flame, a criminal driven mad by drugs and a killer acting on revenge - as the elements become twisted and confused in Eve's mind, she must rely on her instincts as never before.

In Death Series:
Naked in Death
Glory in Death
Immortal in Death
Rapture in Death
Ceremony in Death
Vengeance in Death
Holiday in Death
Midnight in Death (Novella)
Conspiracy in Death
Loyalty in Death
Witness in Death
Judgement in Death
Betrayal in Death
Interlude in Death (Novella)
Seduction in Death
Reunion in Death
Purity in Death
Portrait in Death
Imitation in Death
Big Jack (Novella in the Remember When Anthology)
Divided in Death
Visions in Death
Survivor in Death
Origin in Death
Memory in Death
Haunted in Death (Novella)
Born in Death
Innocent in Death
Eternity in Death (Novella)
Creation in Death
Strangers in Death
Salvation in Death
Ritual in Death (Novella)
Promises in Death
Kindred in Death
Missing in Death (Novella)
Fantasy in Death
Indulgence in Death
Possession in Death (Novella)
Treachery in Death
New York to Dallas
Chaos in Death (Novella)
Celebrity in Death
Delusion in Death
Calculated in Death
Thankless in Death
Taken in Death (Novella)
Concealed in Death
Festive in Death
Obsessed in Death
Devoted in Death
Wonderment in Death (Novella)
Brotherhood in Death
Apprentice in Death
Echoes in Death
Secrets in Death
Dark in Death
Leverage in Death
Connections in Death (2019)

Visit J.D. Robb's website for more information.

Review:
This instalment of the In Death series sees Eve trying to hunt down a cop killer, someone is targeting policemen and they all seem to be linked to a failed case against notorious gangster Max Ricker, someone who also happens to be an ex-associate of Roarke's. The deeper Eve digs the more trouble she finds, it appears that the policemen who were murdered may have been dirty but what remains to be seen is how deep the corruption goes and who the next target might be. Eve needs to stop a killer but she's also determined to sniff out anyone who has been on the take and she wants to put Ricker in prison where he belongs. She's going to have to work fast because Ricker has a grudge against Roarke and he now thinks targeting Eve is the perfect way to get back at his old associate.

The second a member of the police is murdered the entire police force pulls together to get justice for one of their own. The heat is on to solve the case quickly but as Eve starts investigating the officers involved she gets more than a few backs up from people unwilling to believe the victims were dirty. Now finds herself in the impossible situation of investigating colleagues, people who should uphold the law not break it, and it's an extremely uncomfortable situation to be in. Roarke's connection to her main suspect makes things even more complicated but that's something she should be getting used to now, he has his fingers in so many pies it's hard to find a case that doesn't touch him in some way or another.

Their relationship has always been really strong but they're both pretty messed up in their own ways and this book is the first time we see them at odds with each other. They have a pretty bad fight that leaves them both reeling and it was quite a shock to see such a distance between them. It was easy to see where they were both coming from though and I think they both learned a lot about themselves and each other thanks to the fight. The making up was pretty epic too so that was worth falling out for! I think they're a fantastic couple so I'm glad that they're still growing and evolving as the series continues. I'm still totally loving this series and I'm planning to dive into the next book as soon as possible, it's a good job I order several books at a time because I can't seem to stop binging on them lately!

Source: Purchased

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Friday, 22 February 2019

Review: Polaris Rising - Jessie Mihalik

A space princess on the run and a notorious outlaw soldier become unlikely allies in this imaginative, sexy space opera adventure—the first in an exciting science fiction trilogy.

In the far distant future, the universe is officially ruled by the Royal Consortium, but the High Councillors, the heads of the three High Houses, wield the true power. As the fifth of six children, Ada von Hasenberg has no authority; her only value to her High House is as a pawn in a political marriage. When her father arranges for her to wed a noble from House Rockhurst, a man she neither wants nor loves, Ada seizes control of her own destiny. The spirited princess flees before the betrothal ceremony and disappears among the stars.

Ada eluded her father’s forces for two years, but now her luck has run out. To ensure she cannot escape again, the fiery princess is thrown into a prison cell with Marcus Loch. Known as the Devil of Fornax Zero, Loch is rumored to have killed his entire chain of command during the Fornax Rebellion, and the Consortium wants his head.

When the ship returning them to Earth is attacked by a battle cruiser from rival House Rockhurst, Ada realizes that if her jilted fiancé captures her, she’ll become a political prisoner and a liability to her House. Her only hope is to strike a deal with the dangerous fugitive: a fortune if he helps her escape.

But when you make a deal with an irresistibly attractive Devil, you may lose more than you bargained for . . .

Consortium Rebellion Series:
Polaris Rising
Aurora Blazing (October 2019)

Visit Jessie Mihalik's website for more information

Review:
As the fifth of six children Ada's main purpose in life was always to marry into one of the other prominent houses so that her father, the head of the von Hasenberg, could place a spy in an enemy camp. Her father doesn't care that it would be a loveless marriage and that she'd be miserable, he just sees it as her duty to her family. Ada isn't quite so willing to go along with his plans though and she's spent the last couple of years on the run, hiding as a mercenary and taking whatever jobs she can just to survive.

Now her father has lost patience with her though and placing a huge bounty on her head left her vulnerable to any lowlife who just wants to collect the cash. Taken prisoner she is thrown in a cell with another notorious and high value prisoner Marcus Loch. Ada will do whatever it takes to escape before she's taken back to her father and if that means allying herself with another prisoner then that's what she'll do. She doesn't trust Loch but neither of them stand a chance of escaping alone so they'll have to work together in the short term at least.

Polaris Rising was such a fun read and I enjoyed every minute of it. It was the perfect blend of sci-fi world building and romance with plenty of action, great characters and hot chemistry. Ada is a brilliant character who is both smart and fierce, she has no intention of getting caught by her father or her unwanted fiancé and she will do whatever it takes to figure out why House Rockhurst are so eager for the marriage to go through. Loch is the kind of mysterious alpha who I find it very hard to resist, it's obvious he has secrets and I enjoyed unravelling some of the layers to find out more about his past. Ada and Loch fit together really well, they balance each other out as a couple and even when they have a big misunderstanding they're both adult enough to talk things through rather than just act without thinking.

This is a romance so that is a large focus of the story but there was plenty of other things going on too. The romance is fairly slow build and completely believable and the action and mystery kept me on my toes while I was reading. I'd be very happy to read more books with Ada and Loch as the main characters but I'm also excited that the next book stars Ada's sister Bianca. The next book is definitely at the top of my wish list and Jessie Mihalik is an author to watch out for.

Source: Received from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Review: Witness in Death - J.D. Robb

There was always an audience for murder...

Opening night in a packed theatre - a killer is on the stage. It's the perfect setting for the perfect crime. But they hadn't counted on homicide detective Eve Dallas being in the audience.

As a media frenzy envelops the high-profile actors, Eve begins to realise that behind their golden facades lurk dark, distressing pasts. The truth begins to blur with the dramatic, so that Eve's unwavering drive for justice is needed now more than ever.

Astonishing acts of betrayal, vanity, sexual deceit and unrequited love push everyone to the edge, until even Eve begins to lose her grip. But if she doesn't reach the gritty truth beneath it all, more lives will end...

In Death Series:
Naked in Death
Glory in Death
Immortal in Death
Rapture in Death
Ceremony in Death
Vengeance in Death
Holiday in Death
Midnight in Death (Novella)
Conspiracy in Death
Loyalty in Death
Witness in Death
Judgement in Death
Betrayal in Death
Interlude in Death (Novella)
Seduction in Death
Reunion in Death
Purity in Death
Portrait in Death
Imitation in Death
Big Jack (Novella in the Remember When Anthology)
Divided in Death
Visions in Death
Survivor in Death
Origin in Death
Memory in Death
Haunted in Death (Novella)
Born in Death
Innocent in Death
Eternity in Death (Novella)
Creation in Death
Strangers in Death
Salvation in Death
Ritual in Death (Novella)
Promises in Death
Kindred in Death
Missing in Death (Novella)
Fantasy in Death
Indulgence in Death
Possession in Death (Novella)
Treachery in Death
New York to Dallas
Chaos in Death (Novella)
Celebrity in Death
Delusion in Death
Calculated in Death
Thankless in Death
Taken in Death (Novella)
Concealed in Death
Festive in Death
Obsessed in Death
Devoted in Death
Wonderment in Death (Novella)
Brotherhood in Death
Apprentice in Death
Echoes in Death
Secrets in Death
Dark in Death
Leverage in Death
Connections in Death (2019)

Visit J.D. Robb's website for more information.

Review:
Poor Eve can't even enjoy a night at the theatre with Roarke without witnessing a murder, one committed right on stage in full view of the entire audience! Now she's got to try and figure out which of the famous actors in the play killed one of their fellow cast members. She quickly realises that everyone had reasons to want the play's star dead but which one of them actually did the deed?

I think this is the first time in this series that I've almost wanted the murderer to get away with it! The victim here is absolutely vile and definitely got what was coming to him, something even Eve would agree with. If it wasn't for the death of an innocent witness I think I'd have been hoping for her to bungle the case but Eve is a stickler for the law and she will keep digging until she's figured things out no matter how horrible the victim was.

It gets to a point where you're ten books into a series that you start running out of things to say but I still absolutely love this world and Eve and Roarke have become one of my favourite couples. The way they work together is fantastic and I love that their relationship is continuing to evolve even though they're happily married. I also really love all the side characters like Feeny, Peabody and McNab so it's always fun spending time with all of them. The mystery kept me guessing since pretty much everyone who worked at the theatre had a reason to want the victim dead but I think I read this series more for the characters than for the murders at this point. This was another great instalment that still managed to leave me wanting more.

Source: Purchased

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Review: Fake Love - Claire Contreras

In the twenty-five years I’ve known Cory York, the only thing I didn’t fake with him were my orgasms.

In seventh grade, I faked a stomach flu to stay home and keep him company while he was sick. I ended up with a virus that kept me out of school for an entire week.

In twelfth grade I faked an injury to avoid going to prom by myself. He took pity on me, dumped his original date and escorted me to the dance where the spurned girl dumped an entire pitcher of red punch over my head.

In college, I faked being in a relationship with him to get him out of a bind with a classmate. Most recently, I faked a proposal, an engagement, and wedding date.

Between the ring on my finger and the home cooked meals every night, I fell for him. So I left, because Cory York is a good friend, but a terrible boyfriend. I had to leave before he broke my heart.

We went from best friends to silent strangers. Now that I’m back in town, he wants me to be his plus one for his cousin’s wedding. This time I’ll have to fake not loving him.

THIS BOOK IS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE IN AUDIO ON THE READ ME ROMANCE PODCAST. Listen for FREE here:

iTunes - http://geni.us/A888vRA
Google Play - http://geni.us/7lB4UBK
Website - www.readmeromance.com

Visit Claire Contreras' website for more information.

Review:
You can listen to this audiobook for free via the Read Me Romance Podcast or purchase the ebook from Amazon. Some of the ebooks will have extra content like an extended epilogue but I'm not sure if that's the case with this one since I've only listened to the audio version.

I have to be honest and say that the stories I've listened to in the Read Me Romance podcast have been a bit hit and miss so far so I was a bit wary going into Fake Love, especially since I've not read anything by Claire Contreras before. Luckily I was pleasantly surprised and this was my favourite of the stories I've listened to so far.

I always enjoy a good friends to lovers romance and as much as I would have liked this to have been a longer book I still liked Evelyn and Cory's story. Evelyn has known she's in love with Cory for years, they've been best friends forever but even though they faked being in a relationship to get an ex girlfriend off his back she knows Cory doesn't feel the same way about her. Moving away to school has put a lot of distance between them both physically and emotionally, especially since they had a big falling out before she left. When she comes home to visit they're thrown together at a mutual friend's wedding and Evelyn finally realises that Cory might not be so emotionally uninvolved after all.

This was quite a cute story that was very quick and easy to read. I liked both of the main characters and thought it had enough depth for a short novella, obviously there could have been more character development if it had been a full length book but for a freebie introduction to the author it did a great job and I'll definitely consider reading more of Claire Contreras' books in the future.

Source: I listened to this audiobook for free via the Read Me Romance podcast.

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Kindle:

Monday, 18 February 2019

Review: Twisted Truths - Rebecca Zanetti

Twisted Truths is the third book in New York Times bestselling author Rebecca Zanetti's breathtaking romantic suspense series, Blood Brothers, that will be loved by fans of Karen Rose, Kylie Brant, Elaine Levine, Maya Banks's KGI series and Lisa Jackson.

Noni is desperate. Her infant niece has been kidnapped, and the only person who can save her is a private detective with too many secrets to count - and more enemies than he can name. A man who walked away from Noni without any warning a year ago and broke her heart. But with Talia's life on the line, Noni won't take no for an answer...

The moment Denver Jones sees Noni, the memories come rushing back. The fire in her eyes. The determination in her voice. The danger of having her in his life. Denver had to push her away once, but now with vicious criminals threatening Noni and her niece, he'll do whatever it takes to protect them. But enemies from his past are circling, and they'll use anything - and anyone - to get to Denver.

Sin Brothers Series:
Forgotten Sins
Sweet Revenge
Blind Faith
Total Surrender

Blood Brothers Series:
(Spin off from the Sin Brothers)
Deadly Silence
Lethal Lies
Twisted Truths

Visit Rebecca Zanetti's website for more information

Review:
Twisted Truths is the final book in Rebecca Zanetti's Blood Brothers series and it's definitely the one I was most excited about. Poor Denver has been pining for Noni since the beginning of the trilogy, he met her and fell in love before the series started but broke both of their hearts by walking away. He knows he left to protect her but she has no idea why he up and left without even saying goodbye. Noni never thought she'd see Denver again but her niece has been kidnapped and she needs help desperately, desperately enough that she's willing to ask the man who broke her heart for help.

There is no way Denver can turn down Noni's request for help, especially now that she's put a target on her back by very publicly searching for him on the internet. Even if he wasn't still in love with her he wouldn't be able to leave a young baby in the hands of a brutal gang though. Denver will do whatever it takes to keep Noni safe and to bring Talia home but he's going to have to work fast if he wants to do it before Maddison and Cobb catch up with them both.

I already loved Denver but it was so great to see him finally fighting for his chance at happiness. He's always been willing to risk his life so that his brothers will survive but once he starting to see the kind of future he could have with Noni it gave him even more strength for the battle. Denver has always been the silent one of the group and Noni used to let him get away with keeping secrets the first time they dated but now she's not willing to let him get off so easily and I loved how she kept pushing him for answers. They make such a fab couple, the chemistry between them was intense from the beginning but there was so much more to their relationship than just sex.

Dr Madison has been the evil at the centre of both the Sin Brothers and Blood Brothers series so I can't tell you how satisfying it was to finally have everything come to a head. This is a battle Denver, Heath and Ryker can't win alone though and that means bringing in the Dean brothers too which made it even better. This was a fantastic conclusion to both of these series, I'm going to miss these characters but at the same time I'm glad they're going to get to enjoy their HEAs now without the constant threat of Madison and her soldiers hanging over their heads.

Source: Received from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails