Friday, August 28, 2015

Cold Hearts by Sharon Sala

Book Description:

There's only one way to keep secrets buried… 

If only it had been something else that brought Lissa Sherman and Mack Jackson back in touch after so many years. Something—anything—other than the murder of Mack's father. Even worse, Lissa's car had been used as the murder weapon. 

Thirty-five years ago, four friends went out joyriding and ended up in a terrible accident that left one dead and the others with no memory of that awful night. Now two more people, including Mack's father, have been murdered, and if the lone survivor knows why they're being targeted, she's not talking. 

Even as Lissa and Mack find themselves drawn together in the midst of tragedy, the mystery deepens when someone comes after Lissa, too. Is the danger to her tied to the other deaths, or are two killers at work in town? Now Mack has to fight an unknown attacker as well as his feelings for Lissa, but it may be that he can't win either battle.

My Thoughts:
Completely love Sharon Sala's books and this one was no exception.  Some people will do anything to keep their dirty deeds a secret.  A terrible night over thirty years ago is the center of the chaos that brings Mack and Lissa back together.  There were four that night and now only one is left and she isn't talking.  Investigating his father's death, Mack and Lissa grow closer.  Then someone targets her and they have to figure out who is coming after her and why.
Wow.  I really liked this story.  The characters were great and they draw you in.  The story pulls you along and you just can't put it down.  It was freaky how the past catches up with the present and how far people will go to keep secrets.  The chemistry between Lissa and Mack was great and I couldn't wait for them to figure out what was going on.
Absolutely a 5/5.  Great book!
Thank you to the publisher for the review copy of this book (via netgalley).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Blackjack by Christine Donovan

BlackJack (Standish Bay Romance #1)Book Description:
Cole Jackson spends fifteen years in prison for a murder he did not commit, the murder of his wife Lindsey. His talent as a songwriter, and being an avid reader, save him from the loneliness of the cold, dark and unforgiving prison walls. But as he joins the world of the free again, he struggles with his once again fame, because of his rock-n-roll band, of being a convicted killer and the fact that his self-esteem and self-respect were lost years ago. Prison will do that to you, not to mention drugs, alcohol and an unfaithful wife. He no longer has the drugs, the alcohol, or the unfaithful wife. What he has is a tarnished reputation and the determination to find the true killer and restore his life. 

Shannon Gallagher’s hard work as a writer has finally paid off. She believes her life is complete until she meets Cole Jackson. She idolized him at sixteen, cried at twenty-one when he went to prison. Now at thirty-six she meets him and falls instantly in love. But as Cole gets closer to his wife’s killer, he puts Shannon’s life in danger. Can he expose the murderer and keep Shannon safe? 

My Thoughts:
This was an all around good book.  Cole is a bad guy.  Well, he is a good guy that got a bad deal.  He went to prison for 15 years for a murder he didn't commit and now that he is out he is going to find out who really did.  Shannon loved Cole when they met, but as they get closer, so does the danger.  
I was expecting a simple romance, and while this book had romance, it had other elements as well.  The character interactions were great.  I liked that they were well developed and involved.  There was a good mix of serious and humor so it wasn't completely suspenseful, but the characters were realistic.  I loved the chemistry between Shannon and Cole.  I also really liked how Cole treated Shannon.  I really liked the story and setting and want to definitely read more from this author!
4/5 for this one and I really expect great things from this author's next work.  
Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book (via PUYB).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Madison's Song by Christine Amsden

Madison's SongBook Description:
Her voice is enchanting; his soul is black…

Madison Carter has been terrified of Scott Lee since the night he saved her from an evil sorcerer – then melted into a man-eating monster before her eyes. The werewolf is a slave to the moon, but Madison’s nightmares are not.

Despite her fears, when Madison’s brother, Clinton, is bitten by a werewolf, she knows there is only one man who can help. A man who frightens her all the more because even in her nightmares, he also thrills her.

Together for the first time since that terrible night, Scott and Madison drive to Clinton’s home only to discover that he’s vanished. Frantic now, Madison must overcome her fears and uncover hidden strengths if she hopes to save him. And she’s not the only one fighting inner demons. Scott’s are literal, and they have him convinced that he will never deserve the woman he loves.

My Thoughts:
Completely enjoyed this book.  Scott and Madison didn't have the best start to their relationship.  In reality, it was a horrible start and Madison never would have gone anywhere close to him, except she needed help for her brother.  Clinton got bitten by a werewolf, and since Scott is the leader of the local pack, Madison knows he is the best choice for help.  She faces her fears in more ways than one, and she and Scott plunge head first into something that is more than it appears.
The start to this book had me wondering but it was also the perfect set up for the rest of the book.  I loved that this book focused on Madison.  She doesn't trust easily (understatement of the year) and she has her reasons.  I hated how her family was to her, but that it made her distrust her brother as well.  The romance between Maddison and Scott was slow, and fit well with the story line.  Overall, I cannot wait for more from Christine Amsden!  I really hope the next book is about Madison's brother :)
This is a 4/5 for me and is staying on my keeper shelf.

Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Eden's Creatures by Valerie Zambito

Eden's CreaturesBook Description:
Some rules cannot be broken. Ever. Until it happens. Twice. 

Cal Taylor hates his life. A neglectful mother, an abusive stepfather, and town thugs all conspire to tear him down. But, he never could have imagined that his dreams of striking out on his own would take him to a whole different world. 

When he stumbles into the mystical Faedin, he can’t help but be drawn to the beautiful girl who captures him. Stassi is everything he’s not. Confident. Strong. Ruthless. More animal than human really. Before he knows it, they’re caught in a dangerous struggle for survival and neither are prepared for the cunning of the serpent that slithers just out of sight.

My Thoughts:
I liked this book.  Cal has a horrible life.  His mother could care less about him, his step-father likes to beat him and his mother, and there are bullies at school.  The only bright spot in his life is his little brother.  Then one day, he accidentally enters another world and meets Stassi.  She is basically the opposite of him and together they make an interesting pair that must save the world.
I liked the land of Faedin.  I absolutely disliked Cal's home life and how he had to deal with all that horrid business but that is the life of some people.  The author made that part of it realistic ad I felt bad for Cal.  Stassi was an interesting character and I liked how different the Faedin were from humans and yet how similar.  The story flowed along well and I really liked it up to the end.  I had an issue with how it ended and just didn't like it.  I saw it coming toward the end but to me it just wasn't 'right'.  I would still recommend it because I liked the rest of the story and enjoyed it quite a bit.It was between a 3 and 4 for me so I will say 4/5 for this one.
Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book (via Reading Addiction Book Tours).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

A Sapphire Season by Lynn Morris

A Sapphire SeasonBook Description:
Lynn Morris, bestselling author of The Baron's Honourable Daughter, once again sweeps readers into the Regency era with striking period detail. Lady Mirabella Tirel, the beautiful daughter of the Marquess of Camarden, takes a practical approach to love since a dashing captain broke her heart at age 17. Now at almost 22 years old, she has decided to endure one last London season to secure a suitable engagement and begin a simple life in the country. Sir Giles Knyvet is Mirabella's oldest friend and her most dependable ally, and he is also secretly in love with her. Yet he knows the prospect of a relationship is doubtful: Besides being a mere baronet, he aims to settle a large family debt before sharing his feelings with her. But as Mirabella draws close to a suitable match, Giles may need to interfere to buy himself more time.

My Thoughts:
I really liked this book.  Mirabella has decided, due to a broken heart, that she cannot marry for love.  She is going to make a practical match in London season.  Giles has been friends with Mirabella their whole lives.  He would love to be able to marry her, but with the debt he was left, that isn't a possibility.  He has to settle his debts before he can make a move, but Mirabella has several interested suitors and Giles may just be running out of time.
I really liked the characters in this book.  Honestly, I think I liked Mirabella and Giles' friends as much as I liked them!  The way the author wrote them just pulled me in.  I felt bad for Giles being in love with Mirabella and not being able to do anything about it.  Mirabella's practical approach to a match was interesting to watch (read).  I wasn't surprised at all by this book, but it was a cozy book to read.
It was a 4/5 for me.  
Thank you to the publisher/author for the review copy of this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Over the Edge by N. E. Brown

Carson Chance, P.I.: Over the EdgeBook Description:
This is a sentimental and epic story about a young man, injured in the View Nam War, who returns to Dallas, Texas, in 1965, and begins rebuilding his life. Set against the rock and roll era of the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, when casual sex and recreational drugs were the norm, two damaged people are thrown together by accident. 
Returning from a VA hospital in Louisiana, twenty-six year old Carson Chance stops on the interstate to pick up a beautiful seventeen year old female hitch hiker named Amy Warren. He agrees to let her stay in his guest room until she gets on her feet and soon discovers that she is wanted for the murder of her abusive step-father. 
After Amy’s incarceration she returns to Dallas in hopes of rekindling a relationship with Carson who feels their age difference is too great. She sets out to prove him wrong and their on-again, off-again romance finds conflict at every corner. 
Carsons own life is threatened when a member of the Chicago mafia tries to hire him to find someone for them. When Carson refuses they use Amy to blackmail him into helping them. Carson barely escapes death again, and his addiction to drugs puts him over the edge and drives a deep wedge between him and Amy, his one true love.

My Thoughts:
This was a good one.  Carson has had significant issues since returning from the War.  When his path crosses with Amy Warren, both of their lives change.  He finds out she is under age and later that she is wanted.  Through an unusual and unexpected series of events, Carson and Amy flow through life.  Murder, kidnapping and a host of other events make it to where they wonder if life will ever smooth out and there be a happily ever after.
I truly liked how these characters fit.  The story started and I wasn't sure if it would plod along or be fast, and to my surprise, it sped right along.  The characters were well developed and the story was just really good.  I liked how it wasn't easy for them and both were broken, but they were right for each other.  They definitely had to go through a lot!
A 4/5 for me.  I really liked how the story didn't slow down and ramble.
Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book (via PUYB).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Dark Nights Rage/Killian by Alexandra Ivy & Laura Wright

Rage/Killian (Bayou Heat, #17-18)Book Description:
Get Wild in the Wildlands

From New York Times Bestsellers, Alexandra Ivy and Laura Wright, the heat of the bayou is back with Rage/Killian in an all-new dual 'tail'. Enter the Wildlands, where a new, volatile danger threatens the sizzling hot Pantera.

Rage might be an aggressive Hunter by nature, but the gorgeous male has never had a problem charming the females. All except Lucie Gaudet. Of course, the lovely Geek is a born troublemaker, and it was no surprise to Rage when she was kicked out of the Wildlands.

But now the Pantera need a first-class hacker to stop the potential destruction of their people. And it’s up to Rage to convince Lucie to help. Can the two forget the past—and their sizzling attraction—to save the Pantera?

Gorgeous, brutal, aggressive, and human, Killian O’Roarke wants only two things: to get rid of the Pantera DNA he’s been infected with, and get back to the field. But the decorated Army Ranger never bargained on meeting the woman—the female—of his dreams on his mission to the Wildlands.

Rosalie lost her mate to a human, and now the Hunter despises them all. In fact, she thinks they’re good for only one thing: barbeque. But this one she’s guarding is testing her beliefs. He is proud and kind, and also knows the pain of loss. But in a time of war between their species, isn’t any chance of love destined for destruction?

My Thoughts:
Completely enjoy this series and Rage/Killian's stories were no different.  Rage has never understood why Lucie didn't want to be a part of everything.  He didn't understand why she stayed on the fringe, in the shadows.  Now, their people need her help and he is the one sent to track her down.  Lucie is the best at what she does and she's always had a thing for Rage.  Now together, they discover a mutual attraction!
Killian is a human.  Rosalie hates humans.  Humans killed her mate and now they must pay with blood.  She wants to kill Killian but at the same time is horribly attracted to her.  As an experiment, all Killian wants to do is get whatever they put in him out.  His attraction to Rosalie is not good timing for either of it?
Loved all the characters in these books.  Rage is an awesome Hunter and compassionate.  Lucie is hurt and wants to be needed and wanted.  I really loved how Rage treated her.  She had done some things to him that he didn't understand but he still treated her well, especially when he found out about her past.
Rosalie is a Hunter that is wanting blood and is ready for war.  I felt terrible for her, but I also felt bad for Killian for being a science experiment.  Together they may heal or kill each other.  It was fun reading which would happen.  
4/5 for me.  I really do enjoy all the Ivy & Wright books!!
Thank you to the author for the review copy of this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Spider's Trap by Jennifer Estep

Book Description

The next thrilling book in Jennifer Estep’s New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling Elemental Assassin series—“an extraordinary series.…One of the most intriguing heroines in the genre” (Romantic Times Book Reviews).

Keep your friends close but your enemies within stabbing distance.
One important lesson I’ve learned in the assassination business is that to be the best you have to roll with the punches. Now that I’m queen of Ashland’s underworld—by default, not by choice—a lot more punches are being thrown my way. But I suppose that’s the price of victory for taking down some of the underworld’s top dogs. Good thing I have my Ice and Stone magic to help me survive my volatile new position. Just when I think things are finally settling down, someone tries to murder me during a hush-hush underworld meeting. But the real surprise is how strangely familiar my shadowy assailant seems to be.

My job is to maintain order among killers, crooks, and thieves, and soon I’m embroiled in a bloody game where the ability to keep secrets could be the greatest superpower of all. My enemies have all sharpened their knives and laid their traps, waiting for me to fall. But this Spider weaves her own webs of death…

My Thoughts:
I liked this Spider book.  It is a good addition to the series.  Gin is the head of the underworld, though she would much rather life go back to 'normal'.  When her friends are going to be collateral damage in a hit gone wrong, she is unhappy to say the least.  Snippets of memories tease her but it takes a thorough search to see what act from the past is coming to the present.  Now she must do more than just avoid the everyday attempts on her life, but find a killer before he finds her.
I absolutely love the Spider series.  Gin's life is awesome.  Reading the first couple of pages, I wasn't sure it would live up to my expectations but it did.  Her loyalty to her friends and family makes her stronger than most any of her enemies.  All the regular characters are there and in fine form and we meet an underworld boss with her own talents.  I liked how the past messed with the present and love the set up for the next book!
It was a 4/5 for me.  I love this series and this was a great addition.
Thank you to the publisher for the review copy of this book (via netgalley).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Monday, July 27, 2015

The Road Home by Kathleen Shoop

The Road HomeBook Description:
The Long-Awaited Sequel to Award-Winning, Bestselling Author Kathleen Shoop’s The Last Letter…
1891—Living separately for three years, fourteen-year-old twins, Katherine and Tommy Arthur, have done their best to make each boarding house feel like home. But unrest grows as they are driven to questionable actions just to survive. Meanwhile their desperate mother is confronted with breaking yet another promise to her children. Then a miracle descends. Hope rises on a cold, rainy night and changes everything. If Jeanie could just get word to Katherine and Tommy, she knows she can set their lives right again. Agitators, angels, and dangerous “saviors” illuminate the Arthurs’ unmatched determination and smarts.
1905—Though she tries to forget the awful years that hurt so much, the memories still haunt Katherine. Now, tearful mourners at her mother’s funeral force her to revisit a time in her life that both harmed and saved her in the most unexpected ways. Tommy grieves his mother’s passing as well. He too is thrust backward, compelled to rediscover the events in his life that shaped the man he has become. Will he commit to reconstructing his broken life? The Arthurs come to understand that forgiveness is the only way back to hope, the only way to find all that was good in the misfortune that transformed their lives forever.

My Thoughts:
Good historical fiction!  The family is torn apart.  Their mother must live without them and Tommy and Katherine must learn to survive alone.  Alternating between past and present, the story unfolds of family and their constant struggle to reunite.  
I wasn't certain about how long it would take me to read this book as it looks a bit lengthy when you pick it up.  Once you start reading though, the pages fly by and soon you are at the end and wishing for more.  I felt the heartache as mother had to be separated from her children because as a mother, that is a terrible thing to endure.  Then seeing from alternating times and views how events unfolded was awesome.  I must say that I loved the history throughout and that it felt like I could see the scenes as they were described. 
5/5 for me.  This is the second in a series and can be read alone, but I would still suggest reading them in order. 

Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Connected by Kat Stiles

ConnectedBook Description:
High school is hard enough, Em knows. Her freshman year introduced her to all the cliques, annoying teachers, and tough homework assignments. But discovering you have super powers and not knowing how to control them is a whole new level of complicated.

Thankfully, Em isn't alone. Her best friend Roz starts having unusual dreams that come true, and Tommy, Em's secret crush, can hear the softest whispers in class.

A romance blossoms with Tommy. But just as things are looking up, people start dropping like flies. A telepathic serial killer is on the loose and only Em and her friends have a hope of stopping him.

Or do they? If they don't figure out the killer's identity soon, one of them could be next.​

My Thoughts:
I completely enjoyed this book.  Em hates going to school because she is different and kids are mean.  Her best friend Roz is hot and every guy wants to date her.  Em has never had that problem and is totally crushing on the new guy in class, Tommy.  Trauma causes Em's gift to come to light and then Roz's.  When Roz dreams of murder, they must figure out who the murderer is and what is going on before one of the three of them wind up dead!
Honestly, I liked all the characters in this book.  They were all written well and those I was supposed to dislike, I disliked and the 'hero' was likable.  Em not being the 'it' girl was great for me.  She had issues, kids were nasty and made fun of her.  She loves her best friend to death, but has a bit of a jealous feeling because all of the guys want her.  Tommy brought in a nice male element, though I gotta admit to wanting to know a lot more about his big brother! There is a lot going on in this book and it will leave you wanting to read the next in the series immediately!
Solid 4/5 for me.  I can't wait to see what happens next with these characters.
Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book (via YA Bound Book Tours).  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

**mild language and adult situations**