Christmas Awards 2011

Tuesday 28 October 2014

Charming the Beast

Charming the Beast (Purgatory Book 3) by Cynthia Eden

Publisher: Cynthia Eden

October 2014

Pages: 206

Contemporary, Paranormal Romance


Connor Marrok works for the Seattle Para Unit.  Though he never intended to do so.  He’s a real monster and his beast doesn’t play nice so he isn’t one of the good guys.  Now he finds himself being blackmailed into doing one new assignment.  It is supposed to be his last one.  His latest mission is to protect beautiful Chloe Quick.  He needs to keep her alive and destroy her enemies.  Connor figured it would be easy to do until he started falling for her.

Chloe is tired of being a prisoner. She wants to run fast into the night and get away from the Para Unit.  Chloe knows trouble when she sees it. Connor is a very big dangerous package of trouble even if he is the sexiest guy she has ever met.  When an obsessed werewolf starts stalking her, Chloe soon realizes that Connor is the one man she needs the most. 

The more time Chloe and Connor spends together increases the attraction they have for each other.  Chloe has never felt desire so dark or so strong before.  The beast inside Chloe has always been silent though it seems Connor is suddenly stirring her animal instincts.  Soon Chloe is wondering how far she is willing to go to spend one more night in Connor’s arms even as the danger and desire twist together.

This is another book in a series that is proving to be very addictive.  The characters are complex and intriguing and make for a story that is very hard to put down.  While each book can be read as a stand alone there is enough common thread through each one to tie them together that the reader gets a better understanding about the books and characters if they read the whole series in order.  This story also leaves the reader wanting more from this world and series.  It also shows why this author is on many readers’ auto buy lists.  This is another amazing book from an author that delivers to her fans over and over again.

I give this one 5 red roses


Discern, Katon University

Discern, Katon University Book One by Andrea Pearson

Publisher: Andrea Pearson

August 2014

ISBN: 1500913499

Pages: 294

Contemporary, New Adult, Paranormal

Seattle, Washington & Moab, Utah

Nicole Williams is a fourth child with magical abilities also known as an Arete.  No matter how hard she tries she just can’t Channel her power.  It seems she is the only student at Katon University that is unable to do so and to fail at magic.

While she might not be able to control or Channel her power it doesn’t stop power from finding her.  She is dealing with possessed books and cursed spiders.  And that is only the beginning as things move quickly to magical currents and freaky shadows.  Soon Nicole turns to both her best friend and a fellow student that is considered a magical rarity, Austin Young, for help.  Austin also happens to be the hottest guy on campus.  He also just might be interested in her.

Now Nicole is competing to be included on a university-led expedition to Arches National Park.  Nicole is determined to show that she does belong even if it is mostly to herself.  Though to qualify for the trip she needs to produce at least some Wind magic and so far that seems impossible.

Nicole begins to wonder if she made the right choice as the competition progresses.   Especially when she learns that the fossils they are studying might not be as dead as everyone thinks they are.

This is a very different story about magic and starts the series off very well.  The reader learns more about this world at the same time that Nicole does and it makes for an engaging read.  The characters are well written and with some mystery woven into the story it makes for a story that is hard to put down.  It will also have readers wanting to know what will happen in the rest of the series.  The book ties up some loose ends while still leaving enough to lead into the next book but it is not really a cliffhanger and makes for a satisfying read. 

I give this one 4-1/2 red roses


Wednesday 22 October 2014

The Killer Next Door

The Killer Next Door by Alex Marwood

Publisher: Penguin Books

October 2014

ISBN: 978-0143126690

Pages: 400

Contemporary, Mystery, Some Romantic Elements

London, England

There are six residents currently living at 23 Beulah Grove.  They also all have secrets.  It is the only reason they would live in rooms for rent that are in a dodgy old building.  They can pay in cash with no credit checks and definitely no leases.  One night during an unbearably hot summer a terrible accident brings the six together in a very uneasy alliance.  What they don’t realize is that one of them is actually a killer.  A killer that has already picked out his next victim.  He will also do anything to protect his secret.

This is a story that pulls the reader in.  With every word read the reader learns a little more about the occupants of 23 Beulah Grove.  It also has some great twists and turns that keep the reader guessing just who the killer is and what will happen next. With a series of mishaps that happen throughout the story it makes for a book that is hard to put down until the mystery is finally revealed.  It is enough to make you wonder about your neighbors and just what they might be hiding.  The story keeps the reader on the hook until the very end.  The reader is never sure until the end just how this one will turn out and if the residents will make it out of this whole or even at all.

I give this one 4 red roses


Swept Away

Swept Away by Jennifer Haymore

Publisher: Jennifer Haymore

October 2014

Pages: 130

Contemporary Romance


Tara is looking for something after a car accident that killed her sister.  She wants to start a new chapter in her life.  The sailing trip she is about to embark on is meant to do that.  Especially after the rut she has fallen into.  At least that was the plan until Ethan Williams stepped on board. 

Ethan seems to be everywhere surrounding Tara and getting under her skin.  She is caught in his strength, presence, and his intensity. 

Ethan radiates confidence.  With his ocean-blue eyes and dark, handsome looks Tara is mesmerized by him.  What really gets to her though is the way he looks at her that draws her in.  He doesn’t see either her past or her scars just her.  The person behind the baggage that she is struggling to leave in the past. 

Ethan has secrets though.  The dark dangerous kind.  She is trapped in the middle of the ocean and tangled up in a web of lies, sex and violence.  For Tara the problem becomes that she would happily be trapped there if only she can have him.

This is the first part of a four part series that starts fast and keeps things coming at the reader.  It ends with a cliffhanger that actually works very well with the story and will have readers eagerly awaiting the second part of the series.  The characters are intense and intriguing and keep the story moving along at a very fast pace.  The story reads as a much shorter story as once the reader starts it they will find it very hard to put down.  The story has suspense woven in extremely well that keeps the reader on the edge of their seats.  If the other parts prove as engrossing as the first part this is going to be one very unforgettable serial.  This is a different turn for this author and she delivers amazingly well.  It would be nice to see even more along this line from this author.

I give this one 4-1/2 red roses


Saturday 18 October 2014


Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

January 2013

ISBN: 978-1-4424-2665-8

Pages: 438

Contemporary, Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult

Coldwater, Maine

Nora Grey wakes up in a cemetery only to realize that she can’t remember the last several months and that she has been missing for weeks.  Nora tries to resume her daily life by hanging out with her best friend, Vee, dealing with school and avoiding her mother’s new boyfriend who is very creepy.  As she struggles to put the pieces together she can’t help feeling that everyone knows more about her disappearance than she does.

Now Nora has met a stranger that is very mysterious and that she finds she is both drawn to and afraid of.  At least he is able to shed some light on her memory loss.  Unfortunately this leads Nora to find out that she is about to embark on the fight of her life and that she is in the middle of ancient enemies that is almost more than she can comprehend.  If that wasn’t enough she is also falling in love.  With all the strange occurrences happenings it bring the feeling that she has already done this before.

This is another great story in a series that is proving hard to forget.  Watching Nora go through all the trials she is going through and how she deals with all the obstacles thrown in her path makes for a story that keeps readers turning the pages just to see how it will all turn out.  It is a different take on fallen angels that makes for an intriguing read.  The story comes to life with all the details provided in the story and yet it doesn’t overwhelm the reader with too much to take in.  This one will also have readers wanting to read the last book in the series just to see how everything will eventually turn out for Nora and those she loves and cares about.  It is also a story that will have readers wanting to read more from this author. 

I give this one 4-1/2 red roses


Saturday 11 October 2014

Gone Girl

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Publisher: BDWY

Reprint April 2014

ISBN: 978-0-307-58837-1

Pages: 415

Contemporary, Suspense, Romance

New York City & North Carthage, Missouri

Nick and Amy Dunne are getting ready to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary.  It is a warm summer morning in North Carthage.  As the presents are wrapped and the reservations made Nick’s beautiful and clever wife disappears.  Now the police are investigating. Nick might be the town golden boy but he isn’t helping with his deceit, his lies nor his inappropriate behavior.  He is definitely bitter and evasive, oddly so, but that doesn’t make him a killer or does it?

This is story that is full of suspense and so many twists and turns that soon the reader is doubting even themselves.  This a book that sucks the reader in with all that is happening and wondering just what will happen next and just what the truth is.  Just when the reader thinks they have figured out the mystery something else is thrown into the mix that makes them wonder if they are on the right track or not.  The story will also keep the reader guessing until the very end on just how this one will end.  This is one book that is worth reading and will have readers re-reading over and over even when they know the ending because with all the nuances in it readers are sure to discover something new with every read.  It does have a somewhat abrupt ending but overall it still an excellent book.

I give this one 4-1/2 red roses


Wednesday 8 October 2014


Hunters Demon Series by Aoife Marie Sheridan

Publisher: Aoife Marie Sheridan

September 2014

ISBN: 978-1495430725

Pages: 118

Contemporary, Paranormal Romance, New Adult

Abigail is a nineteen year old whose job it is to hunt demons.

Her life has been tough and she has was taken in by a priest.  Father Peter also believes her when she says she can see ghosts.  He also trains her to hunt demons with three other members.  One being Daniel that is more than what he seems.

Ghosts start attacking Abigail after a possession goes wrong. It also starts to loosen the tight hold she has had on her emotions.  Now Abigail has drawn the unwanted attention of the Reote.  She also learns that more than she was willing to. 

Knowledge might be power except for Abigail because it becomes her undoing.  The only thing that is keeping her together is Daniel.

This is start to a series that starts off interesting.  The world building it fast and a lot of the background information comes throughout the story as the reader gets more into the book.  It has it’s dark side with each character trying to deal with difficult pasts but it also shows how each one got to the point that they are at.  There are still some unanswered questions about the characters that hopefully will be answered as the reader gets more into the stories.  The first one also ends in a cliffhanger but it is actually a good stopping point.  This story also deals with some dark subjects but it is done is such a way to not pull the reader down. It is handled well.

I give this one 4 red roses


The Charmer

The Charmer Assassin Guild Book 1 by C.J. Archer

Publisher: C.J. Archer

March 2013

ISBN: 978-0987337290

Pages: 286

Historical Romance

1598 Hampshire & London, England

He is handsome, charming and devastating.  He is also the last man she needed but was the one she wanted.

Orlando Holt is an assassin that has never had to assassinate a woman before.  Lady Lynden is both lovely and feisty and will be his first.  Orlando has been told that she is a vicious murderess but he begins to have doubts.  Now he is determined to find out who hired him.  His world is turned upside down with what he learns and sends him headlong into love with the one woman that proves to be immune to his charms.

Lady Susanna Lynden has been widowed twice by the time she turned twenty-four.  She has also had her fill of charming men.  Her life was made miserable by her last husband who wasn’t the same once he got her to the marriage bed after wooing her with all the correct things necessary to win her.  Now money is scarce and her house is falling down but she knows that the exotic fruit from her orange trees will turn things around and keep poverty away.  Except that every where she turns she is being thwarted and someone seems to want her dead.

This is a start to a series that proves to have some very interesting characters and makes for a story that the reader will fall into and won’t want to leave until the very last page and will also have them eagerly looking for the second book in the series.  The world of the 16th century comes to life for readers as they immerse themselves in the world that is built in the story.  It also gives a reader a glimpse of what life was like back then.  If the other books prove to be as full of action and suspense as this one this is going to be one series that will be a lot of fun to read and worth checking out.

I give this one 4-1/2 red roses



Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

May 2012

ISBN: 978-0-06-202404-6

Pages: 525

Dystopian, Young Adult

Tris Prior is finding that every choice can both transform you and has consequences.  Tris is trying to save those she loves and also herself as unrest surges in the factions.  She is also grappling with haunting questions dealing with grief, forgiveness, identity and loyalty not to mention politics and love.

Tris’s initiation day should have been a day of celebration and victory with her new faction.  Instead she had a day that ended in unspeakable horrors.  Now war is looming as the conflict between the factions and their ideologies grow.  With war coming sides need to be chosen and secrets are emerging and those choices will become even more irrevocable and more powerful.  Tris has been transformed by her decisions and also the haunting grief and guilt she is dealing with.  Not to mention the radical new discoveries and shifting relationships she is dealing with.  Tris now must fully embrace her Divergence even when she doesn’t know what it will cost her by doing so.

This is proving to be an excellent trilogy that doesn’t let up on the action and suspense.  With some romance it makes for a book that is very hard to put down.  Readers get to see how the characters have changed from the first story to this one and how they are still the same in many ways. It will also have readers wanting to see just how this is going to turn out in the final book.  The story gives a fascinating look of what ifs and a look at a different world while still being in places that readers can identify with.  It is easy to see why this one was turned into a movie.  This is one trilogy worth trying by readers of all ages.

I give this one 4-1/2 red roses