Review: Golden in Death (In Death, #50) by J.D. Robb


Print Length: 400 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Press (February 4, 2020)

From Goodreads.com: Pediatrician Kent Abner received the package on a beautiful April morning. Inside was a cheap trinket, a golden egg that could be opened into two halves. When he pried it apart, highly toxic airborne fumes entered his body―and killed him.

After Eve Dallas calls the hazmat team―and undergoes testing to reassure both her and her husband that she hasn’t been exposed―it’s time to look into Dr. Abner’s past and relationships. Not every victim Eve encounters is an angel, but it seems that Abner came pretty close―though he did ruffle some feathers over the years by taking stands for the weak and defenseless. While the lab tries to identify the deadly toxin, Eve hunts for the sender. But when someone else dies in the same grisly manner, it becomes clear that she’s dealing with either a madman―or someone who has a hidden and elusive connection to both victims.

                                                 *******************


My Rating: 4 stars out of 5

The last few books in this series have felt off to me, it was as though some essential piece was somehow missing, or as if someone else had taken over writing them. In some ways, I still feel that this book is missing that edge of your seat adrenaline rush the others seemed to possess, but it was a step up from the more recent ones that I have read. 

HOWEVER. 

This one was a lot more enjoyable than the last few have been. There was definitely some solid police work (and a fair amount of luck)  to be had as Eve and her team worked to track down the person behind these seemingly random attacks. Unlike some of the other novels, the culprit wasn't immediately identified (and while I don't mind either way), it was a nice change of pace from how some of the others have gone. 

I also enjoyed the way the author took us back to classic Eve and Roarke - showing them together actually having downtime (whether planting a tree in their yard or sparring in their in-home dojo, it was nice to be reminded of the well-rounded couple that we've all come to know. I also enjoyed seeing cameos from some of the other long-time characters like Louise and Charles. It's always nice to be able to check in with them, even when the circumstances are less than ideal. And can I just talk about Peabody for a second? Man what a story that woman has had! I loved seeing her in this one - it just shows how far she's come since we first met her. 

Speaking of Eve, Roarke and the others, I feel it is important to point out that although this book stands on its own (with a solid beginning, middle and end), that you really should read at least some of the prior novels in order to understand just who these characters are and their interactions with each other.

All things considered, I enjoyed this installment and look forward to the next.


                                                         *******************

                            Golden in Death is available from Amazon.com

0

Review: The Most Eligible Lord in London (The Lords of London #1) by Ella Quinn


Print Length: 320 pages
Publisher: Zebra (March 31, 2020)

From Goodreads.com:  In this captivating new Regency trilogy, bestselling author Ella Quinn picks up where her beloved Worthingtons series left off, as three Lords of London discover true love at last...

Handsome, rakish, incorrigibly flirtatious—Fredrick, Lord Littleton, is notorious. Lady Adeline Wivenly is resolved to keep him at arm’s length during her first Season—until she overhears another woman’s plot to trick him into marriage. Even a rogue is undeserving of such deception, and Adeline feels obliged to warn him—only to find herself perilously attracted...

In the past, Littleton’s charm nearly got him leg-shackled to the wrong woman. Now he’s positive he’s found the right one, for Adeline is everything he wants and needs in a wife. Her sense of justice is so strong she agrees to help him despite her mistrust. But can the ton’s most elusive lord convince the lady he is finally serious about marriage—as long as she will be his bride?



                                                         *******************

My Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

On the whole, this book was good. The characters were solid, and while there was definitely chemistry between Fredrick - Frits to his friends, and Adeline, it wasn't one of those instances where they instantly fell in love with one another. In fact, Adeline spends most of the book coming up with reasons not to succumb to his attentions (or her attraction to him). 

Because of this, I enjoyed watching him try to win her over. From the little things like sending her flowers, and taking her to get ices; to the more obvious asking her to stand up with him at balls and taking her for carriage rides it was the kind of slow-burn romance that makes for a good story. It was also amusing to watch the way that Littleton was about to thwart the plans of Adeline's other (nefarious) suitor at every turn. 

Now we come to the aspects of this book that I didn't enjoy. To begin with, some of the names were VERY similar. When you have a Lord Turner as well as a Lord Turley; and a Lord Littleton with a Mr.Lettsome it quickly becomes confusing. More than once I had to go back and re-read a passage to determine who the author was talking about. Then there is the unnecessary drama surrounding a background character who not only still owns slaves, but allows them to be whipped in the street. While I can understand why the whipping scene would be included as it shows the depth of Fredrick's character, the subsequent drama that results just isn't needed in my opinion, especially when there had already been drama surrounding one of Adeline's other suitors early on in the story. 

All things considered, this was a strong start to a new series that I believe fans of the genre will adore. I would read more from this author! 

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.


                                                         *******************
                                
              The Most Eligible Lord in London is available from Amazon.com

0

Review: The One Night Stand by Carissa Ann Lynch


Print Length: 280 pages
Publisher: One More Chapter (March 6, 2020)

From Goodreads.com: A night she won’t forget…
When single mum Ivy wakes up to a complete stranger lying next to her, she knows her one-night stand hook-ups have to stop. The encounters mean nothing to Ivy, but for just a short time, they make her forget her own terrible life. 
A murder she can’t remember
But then Ivy discovers the stranger in her bed has been stabbed to death, and she is covered in his blood…except Ivy has no recollection of bringing this man home. Could she have killed him?
As she tries to piece together what happened last night, Ivy’s own past returns to haunt her. And secrets can’t stay hidden forever…
                                                 *******************
My Rating: 2 stars out of 5

I first read a story from this author over a year ago, and it was one of those that was an okay read, but it wasn't riveting. I promised to give the author another chance, so I did. 

On the plus side? This was a fairly quick read with some interesting twists along the way. 

But other than that? The majority of these characters are one-dimensional, acting like they didn't have the brains to run to the corner store much less to anything else. Let's see which boxes we check: 

1. Herione who is bitter about her ex leaving her and having a family with someone else? 
2. A bratty teenage daughter who is a bitch for no reason? Seriously. I get teenage daughters and their attitudes (I have 2 myself), but this goes above any beyond any reasonable personality imaginable. 
3. An aloof stepmom who managed to have twins when the first wife couldn't?
4. Jerk of an ex? \
5. Bumbling best friends who force you to do something you don't want to do?
6. Super dark secret (but obvious) secret?

So Ivy wakes up with a dead man in her bed (and another one under her bed just for fun) and she decides not to call the cops. Instead, she's going to "figure this out on her own"... um okay? Because that doesn't make you look guilty at all.

From there the story bounces around from things that are happening "in the now" to things that have happened... I don't know a month ago? It's never really clarified how long ago these things happen, to things that happen in the past. The past-er past? Yes, it makes for an interesting story, but also a very confusing one as well. 

Also, the ending didn't make sense. I can't go into detail without revealing spoilers, but I feel like with all of the evidence that was there, and the history given, the ending didn't much match what should have been. 

I will say the ending did contain some surprise twists that did not see coming, which honestly is what saved this from being a one-star read for me. All in all, this novel may appeal to those who enjoy these kinds of thriller novels. 

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

                                                         *******************

                               The One Night Stand is available from Amazon.com

0

Review: A Litter of Bones (DCI Logan Crime Thrillers #1) by J.D. Kirk


Print Length: 286 pages
Publisher: Zertex Crime (April 15, 2019)

From Goodreads.com: Was the biggest case of his career the worst mistake he ever made?

Ten years ago, DCI Jack Logan stopped the serial child-killer dubbed 'Mister Whisper,' earning himself a commendation, a drinking problem, and a broken marriage in the process.

Now, he spends his days working in Glasgow's Major Incident Team, and his nights reliving the horrors of what he saw.

And what he did.

When another child disappears a hundred miles north in the Highlands, Jack is sent to lead the investigation and bring the boy home.

But as similarities between the two cases grow, could it be that Jack caught the wrong man all those years ago?

And, if so, is the real Mister Whisper about to claim his fourth victim?

                                                     *******************


My Rating: 1 star out of 5

As a rule, I don't DNF books. I feel once I start something I owe it not only to the author, but to the people who read my blog, to finish it out. But holy hell do I wish I had DNF'ed this one. Or better yet, not picked it up to begin with. In fact, as harsh as it sounds, I couldn't delete this one off of my kindle fast enough. 

The book started off strong enough, setting up the story, but then it started to fall apart. To begin with, for this being the first in a series, there is a lot mentioned in the synopsis that we learn nothing about. He doesn't appear to have a drinking problem at all - there are no nights mentioned as having been spent in a bar. In fact, I don't even remember him having any downtime to even have a drink. You also don't learn anything about him having an ex-wife, not to mention a daughter he doesn't see (or seem to know anything about). He is brash, and definitely has no respect for the law he is supposed to uphold, even going so far as to practically assault a man outside of his own house (a man with a known history of drug use and a shotty memory at best).

That can be overlooked. 

I could probably even have overlooked how a man who had reached the rank of DCI and caught "Mister Whisper" ten years ago, made such a glaring error in stupidity that he endangered the life of one of the men under his command. 

What I can not overlook? 

Are the gut-wrenching overly graphic depictions of the mutilation and torture of cats that were repeatedly mentioned in this story for no reason that I can see other than shock value. They did nothing to move along the plot that could not have been achieved in a different way. 

Considering all of those things, I will not be moving on with this series. Nor do I think at this point, I would read more from this author. 

                                                         *******************

                              A Litter of Bones is available from Amazon.com

1

Review: Something Nice (The Original Sinners #1.1) by Tiffany Reisz


Print Length: 70 pages
Publisher: 8th Circle Press (July 28, 2016)

From Goodreads.com: It's July, a couple months after Nora returns to Søren at the end of THE SIREN, and while in bed, Søren makes a trade with Nora. He'll do something nice for her and she'll do something nice for him. Of course, Nora picks something sexual. But Søren surprises her with his "something nice" request.

This story if for mailing list subscribers only. Sign up here: www.tiffanyreisz.com/mailing-list


                                                         *******************

My Rating: 4 stars out of 5

WARNING: Due to sexual content, this story is for mature (18 and over) audiences only. 

This is a wonderful "companion" novella to The Original Sinners series and I'm sure fans of the series will enjoy this novella just as much (if not more) than I did. It is always fun to go back to visit Nora and Søren, but this novel showed a side to them that we don't get to see often. The masks they put on in public when he is her priest and there can be no hint of the relationship they share. This author does a wonderful job of making her characters extremely realistic and relatable, even if you're not into the BDSM lifestyle, you can still relate to Nora in this story as she is going through the heartbreak of losing someone she loved, and struggling to fit into the world she once belonged in.

Speaking of Nora, it was nice to see the way she interacted with everyone - from the little old lady who hosted the picnic, to the teenaged members of the Kingsley Edge Fanclub, this short story was packed full of the witty (and occasionally sarcastic) comments that make Nora who she is. 

Obviously, I would recommend this story (especially to first-time readers of this author so that they can get a very basic feel for her amazing writing style - although they may be a little confused about the dynamic that is my favorite unholy trinity. I will read more from this author (and am in fact eagerly awaiting the next book in this series due out in April 2020).

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel for being a part of this author's mailing list. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.


                                                         *******************
                               
1

Review: Five Bloody Hearts (DCI Matt Ballard, #2) by Joy Ellis


Print Length: 335 pages
Publisher: Jofee Books (February 10, 2019)

From Goodreads.com: DETECTIVE MATT BALLARD’S LAST CASE MIGHT BE THE ONE THAT FINALLY BREAKS HIM.

Grace Repton, a beautiful older woman, walks into the police station to tell Matt she has information that could stop a murder. Her fiancé, the infamous serial killer Jeremy Reader, has told her that he has a disciple who is going to kill using Reader’s horrific methods.

Reader murdered five women and was finally brought to justice by Detective Ballard. Reader is safely imprisoned in a high security prison, and claiming to be a reformed man who wants to help the police.

But can Matt believe the serial killer or his peculiar wife to be? Can the love of a good woman really change a serial killer?

And the Fenland police also have another investigation on their hands. A Lithuanian migrant worker is found dead on the fens. There is no ID on him, but he has a Tree of Life tattoo. The third body to be found with this distinctive tattoo. Is this gang war or something even more sinister?

CAN YOU TRUST A KILLER TO HELP STOP A KILLER?

The police are stretched to breaking point with multiple copycat murders. And Matt and his girlfriend Liz will fight for everything they care about in a heart-stopping conclusion that will have you on the edge of your seat.
 



                                                     *******************


My Rating: 2 stars out of 5

This was one of those stories that I just couldn't get into. It took me several attempts to actually be able to finish this one (and a lot longer than it usually takes me to finish a novel, to be honest). For one thing, there was a lot going on in this novel that was just entirely too implausible for me. Even knowing that I was going to have to suspend disbelief to an extent, there is no possible way that someone would be so skilled that they could fool so many people. That coupled with the way this novel ended, just left so much to be desired. 


The main characters all seemed to be a bit lackluster as well, its a real shame indeed when the most interesting character of all of them was the flamboyantly gay pathologist. Perhaps its because you know at the start of this series that Ballard is retiring that makes it seem like an ending instead of a beginning (as I assume future novels will focus on him and Liz as they begin their PI company). 

Overall, if I came across this author (or even another installment in this series) in the future and the synopsis grabbed me, I would probably give them another read.


                                                         *******************

                              Five Bloody Hearts is available from Amazon.com

1

Review: The Best Man Wins: A Steamy Romantic Comedy by Adora Crooks


Print Length: 208 pages
Publisher: Amazon (February 28. 2020)

From Goodreads.com:  It’s a battle to the final I do…

He was supposed to be a simple one-night-stand to get over my ex.

He ticked all the boxes: smoking hot stranger, eyes as dark as his sense of humor, and no strings attached. He took me up to his room and made me forget all about my heartbreak.

But when my wedding planning company assigns me my next case, I find myself face-to-face with my hot stranger yet again.

His name? Braxton West.

His role? The groom’s best man.

His mission? To break up the couple before they say their vows.

A billionaire like Braxton West, I’m sure, is used to getting what he wants.

But he’s going to have to get cozy with failure, because I won’t let anything or anyone ruin this perfect wedding.

Even if he is making it hard to tear my eyes away from his bulging...biceps

Can I keep this wedding on track...and stop myself from falling victim to a Braxton distraction...?



                                                         *******************

My Rating: 2 stars out of 5

This story had its moments when it was cute. Mostly though, I struggled to get through it. For starter's even though the bride's brother was bankrolling the wedding (he more or less raised her), he doesn't even like the groom. Which leads me to wonder just how he ended up being the best man in the first place. Maybe that's me being overly picking, but there were a lot of little instances like this that just didn't add up. Like how he throws the bride's ring (box and all) out of the window when they are outside of a bar, but yet manages to find just the ring in the backseat. Or how Susie nearly falls to her death when the loft breaks, only to have sex with Braxton on the same loft a few minutes later. 

I think one of the biggest issues I have with this one is that there is so much potential with Braxton and Susie, but I don't feel like we ever really got to know them as a couple. Sure we know they both have pasts they don't want to talk about, and things they would rather forget that shaped them. I get that. But aside from what happened in the past, I don't feel like there was any real character development beyond their pasts (minus a couple little things here and there).

Honestly, quite a bit of this story read more as pornography with very little of anything substantial in between. The characters never really do much to showcase how they feel about each other - other than have sex, although we're supposed to believe they have this great chemistry and fall in love with each other (even them declaring their feelings came as a bit of a what the hell just happened moment). 

All things considered, this is the type of novel that is going to appeal to a lot of people. It just wasn't for me. However, I would give this author another chance. 

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.


                                                         *******************
                                
                        The Best Man Wins is available from Amazon.com

1

Review: Nanny and the Beast by Georgia Le Carre


Print Length: 258 pages
Publisher: Georgia Le Carre (July 25, 2018)

From Goodreads.com:  Yuri

A year ago Yulia, my niece, lost both her parents. Two months ago she completely stopped speaking. Her psychiatrist thought a gentler presence around the house might be good for her. She suggested a nanny for the child. Naturally, I would do anything that would help her regain her happy childhood.

But I didn't expect the woman who stepped into my office. Yeah, she's got my attention, all right, but for all the wrong reasons. I sure as hell don't need this ripe fruit to distract me day and night in my own home.

I tell her she hasn't got the job, and watch her leave my study, but Fate has other plans. Resistance is futile.

April

He lives in a white mansion in London's Knightsbridge, a magnet for playboys and Russian billionaires.   Big, burly bodyguards look at me as if I've not come for a job interview, but to steal the family silver. Whatever. I maintain my professionalism, I'm determined to get this intriguing job of caring for the girl who refuses to speak. A prim woman leads me to his study. She knocks, and a deep, smooth voice beckons us to enter. The door opens and I set eyes on Yuri Volkov.

OMG.

His eyes are like a wolf's. Pitiless. Mesmerizing Dangerous. Obviously he Is drop dead wrong but, I can't stop imagining his big, tanned hands caressing every inch of me. After the briefest interview in the history of interviews he informs me I haven't got the job. As I walk away, humiliated, from his study, it happens. The unthinkable.

And I'm suddenly back in the game.



                                                         *******************

My Rating: 1 star out of 5

This book was so unbelievably BAD that I don't even know where to begin. The writing is mediocre at best, the characters lack any kind of depth, and there is absolutely no character development from beginning to end. 


I knew I should have given up and returned this to Prime reading when she asks the security guard his name and not only does he say that his name is Brain, but she thinks to herself that his name fits him to a T. Brain? Seriously? Are you sure you didn't mean Brian there sweetheart? 

The "hero" of this story is a total jerk with no respect for the heroine (much less anyone else I would guess). Let's see - upon first meeting her he kisses her and decides then and there he can't possibly hire her because he wants to have sex with her. But his niece wants her to stay so she does. Then he invites her to have dinner with him and she is described as wearing a modest dress with a high neck. When she can take no more of him and walks out he thinks to himself "The last thing I needed was to have her walking around my house flashing her wares". Excuse me? She's dressed modestly and you accuse her of flashing her wares because you can't control yourself? 

As if this weren't bad enough, now let's talk about the total lack of consent, borderline RAPE scenes that happen again and again in this story. During one scene, April tells him that they have to stop. In fact, she becomes FRANTIC trying to push away from him. And what does Yuri do? "No" he snarled. "Not before I've had you". Then proceeds to pull off her jeans and underwear and has sex with her.

Of course, the author tries to gloss over this by saying that dear April really did want to have sex with him, even though she did not make this clear to him in any way. Consent is consent people. Even in so-called erotica novels like this one. 

Most of this story read as very bad pornography with very little substance in between. The characters never really do much besides have sex, although we're supposed to believe they have this great chemistry and fall in love with each other. Even the plot surrounding his niece makes no sense whatsoever. 

Don't waste your time on this one. Not when there are so many other, better written erotica novels out there.


                                                         *******************
                                
                        Nanny and the Beast is available from Amazon.com

1

copyright © . all rights reserved. designed by Color and Code

grid layout coding by helpblogger.com