Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Clean Sweep ARC Challenge May 2016 End Result!


May is almost over (just around 1 hour left) and I thought I would list my result since there is no way I can read one more book this month! I must say that it was a good month, I read a lot of ARC's and the only goal I failed was my NetGalley goal. However, I must admit that I went a bit request crazy for a while and the publishers were kind to approve me. A LOT!

My goals:

1. 97% ratio on NetGalley (94% now)
90% and my reading list on NetGalley haven't been this bad since 2015...*feeling ashamed*


2. Five Edelweiss ARC's read

I did it, I read five ARC's from Edelweiss!


3. Three paperback/hardcover/ sent to me from publishers

I only managed...15 (Some I also had as ebooks so I manage to win the Edelweiss goal thanks to this!)


4. Two E-books send to me from publishers, not through NetGalley or Edelweiss.

I read two  and that's all I had to read so not a hard goal to finish!


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So, next time I thinking of listing books to read instead and see how many I manage to read. Btw I read 29 ARCs this month so I guess I should be proud! 



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For the fourth year in a row during the month of May we will be challenging you to get those advanced reading copies read!  These can be e-arc’s, finished copies, audio and physical arcs. (regardless of release date) As an added bonus you will be able to schedule advanced reviews and free up your time to enjoy the warmer weather. To make things fun there will be 24 hour readathon and a grand prize for a 2016 release.
So roll up your sleeves grab your brooms and check your NetGalley stats, Edelweiss haul and those books you’ve meant to review in your ARC TBR pile..because it’s time to make a CLEAN SWEEP! 
Clean Sweep ARC Challenhe

Goodnight Blog Tour by Susie Tate


  Title: Goodnight
By: Susie Tate
Publication Date: April 28, 2016
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Life is pain. That is the reality Goodie has had to accept since she was nine years old. Even before the night her childhood shattered she was never normal: her mind can process people and situations at lightning speed, she has the ability to recall anything she sees or hears with perfect clarity, she can separate from herself if she needs to – making her difficult to torture, difficult to intimidate. In summary, she is the perfect mercenary. A life in the shadows where she can stay in darkness is fine by her. That is until he tries to pull her into the light. Powerful, arrogant, filthy-rich men are, quite frankly, a pain in Goodie’s arse. She’d much rather take an extraction job in the depths of a Colombian jungle than have to deal with their bullshit. But sometimes the money is just too good to turn down, and this time someone important, who is actually doing something Goodie believes in, needs to be kept safe. Luckily, Goodie is an expert at maintaining an invisible presence, enabling her to keep any interaction with the egomaniacs she protects to a minimum … until she meets Nick Chambers. Nick doesn’t seem to understand invisible presence, appropriate employer–employee protocol, security precautions, following instructions, or in fact just leaving her the fuck alone. Everything about him, from his ability to laugh at their situation to the perpetual smile on his gorgeous face complete with goddamn dimple, drives Goodie insane, and for some reason makes her feel threatened. Fear is weakness, and if Goodie’s life has taught her anything it’s that you never, ever show weakness. But Nick is determined, and he’s used to getting what he wants. He’s been effortlessly charming the women in his life since he was five years old, so he knows it won’t be long before he has Goodie right where he wants her. Only some things are so dark, so horrific, they can’t be dragged into the light. Some people are beyond redemption, and Goodnight may be one of them. This book is a full-length contemporary romance of approximately 85,000 words with no cliffhanger and its own HEA. Warning This story involves both swearing and violence from the outset.
  
Amazon UK - http://goo.gl/ctkH6P
Amazon CA - http://goo.gl/MoNv12

Nick watched as Goodie’s eyes opened again, and searched for the panic he could have sworn was there before she closed them, but her ice-blue gaze was now blank, all emotion wiped from her expression. She moved quickly, her mouth crashing down on his and her hands going up into his T-shirt. ‘I want you,’ she told him, her voice husky and unbearably sexy as her hands traced over his abs and the muscles of his chest. He sucked in a sharp breath – he could tell something was off, there was an unnatural desperation about her; but with the woman he had been obsessing over finally touching him, he became incapable of rational thought. ‘Christ,’ he rasped as one of her hands moved down to his crotch and all his ability to think was obliterated. He drove both his hands into her soft hair and took control of the kiss, pushing her back to lie on the duvet he had dumped on the floor. He pulled her hands from him and unzipped her hoody, revealing the black bra beneath. Her body was more amazing than he had imagined (and he had a good imagination and had invested a fair amount of time on this endeavour when it came to her, so that was saying something): she was all defined, toned muscle, combined with softer curves. She was magnificent. She rocked against him and her hands went to his belt, frantically pulling at the buckle. Something about her movements jolted Nick out of his lust-induced haze. He dragged his eyes from her breasts and stomach to her face and he almost flinched. Her expression was blank and her jaw was clenched. ‘Goodie?’ he whispered, and her gaze flew from his belt to his face briefly before focusing just over his shoulder. ‘Hey … hey,’ he muttered, grabbing her hands to still them in her frantic attempts to undo his belt. ‘What is problem?’ she asked sharply, her Russian accent thicker than normal and a frown marring her beautiful face. ‘Where did you go?’ Nick asked, his eyes roving her face. He gathered both her small hands in one of his and reached up to cup her cheek, stroking across her cheekbone and up to her crescent scar with his thumb. ‘I am here,’ she said, jerking her head to the side, away from his touch. ‘No,’ Nick told her, ‘no you’re not here. Where have you gone? Why are you so scared?’ ‘Scared?’ Goodie spat, wrenching away from him, and then scuttling back against the units next to Salem, who raised his head in surprise. ***** Goodie was breathing hard, her exposed chest rising and falling. She desperately wanted to zip her top, but knew that would show yet more weakness. She had perfected the type of meditation that took her out of her own body many years ago. The fact was that there were times in her life that she needed to be able to separate from herself; torture situations being one example, any form of intimacy being another. But nobody, nobody had ever called her on it. Nick made a move forward and she flinched – fucking flinched. What was wrong with her? Salem could feel her tension and flattened his ears against his head, letting out a low growl. She stroked his head and muttered to him that everything was okay in Russian – Salem could smell fear and the only other times Goodie had been as tense as this was when they had been in mortal danger, so she didn’t exactly blame him for his reaction. Nick continued to move towards her, his palms up like he was approaching a terrified wild animal. When he was inches away he reached down to her zipper and surprised her by hooking it together and pulling it up, covering her to just under her chin. ‘Are … are you okay?’ he asked softly, and for the first time since Goodie was eight years old she felt her eyes sting with tears. She blinked rapidly and gritted her teeth. What the fuck was going on? Nick turned and sat next to her on the floor up against the units leaving just a little more space than before, which she was grateful for. They sat in silence for a few minutes. ‘Um, Goodie?’ he asked. ‘Yes?’ ‘Look, I don’t want to pry or anything –’ Goodie sucked in a breath preparing to have to explain her reaction to him ‘– but … well, you don’t seem to have the full complement of toes.’ Goodie blinked, letting out a short bark of laughter in her relief (but unusually for her not noticing Nick’s body jolt at that rarity) and staring sightlessly down at her bare feet. Yes, she was two toes down – both her little toes were missing and part of her third toe on her left foot; ugly scars marked where they had once been. ‘I have never noticed this before,’ she deadpanned, curling the few toes she did have into Salem’s fur so that he would settle back down to go to sleep. Nick sighed. ‘You won’t give anything away, will you. You are the most closed person I’ve ever met. It makes me crazy – do you know that?’ Goodie shrugged. ‘Can’t you just tell me this one small thing? Give me that at least – you know everything about me.’ Goodie rubbed her temple and closed her eyes slowly. After a few silent moments Nick puffed out a frustrated breath and she felt him start to push up to stand. ‘Frostbite,’ she blurted out. She had no idea why, as his questions annoyed her to death, but the idea that he would give up asking them made her stomach clench with actual pain. He eased back down and turned his body towards her. She could feel him watching her face closely. ‘How did you get frostbite badly enough to lose actual bloody toes?’ He sounded incredulous, and weirdly furious, about something Goodie considered relatively trivial. She had been lucky to come out of what happened that winter alive, leave alone largely intact. ‘I lay in the snow for a long time,’ she told him. ‘Why did you do that for God’s sake?’ ‘I had to be still, and I had to wait.’ ‘Well, that’s just goddamn ridiculous. Whoever ordered you to –’ ‘Nobody orders me to do anything,’ she told him. ‘I had a job and I was going to complete it. I knew the risks.’ And she’d finished the job too. The cold had driven her nearly insane and she’d thought she would go blind if she had to stare down the sight of her rifle any longer. Even now she could still feel the surge of excitement as her target finally came into view after so many hours waiting, and the internal battle she had to fight to remain in control of her heartbeat and breathing. She’d resisted the urge to just fire immediately, taken three deep breaths, and on the respiratory pause at the end of the last breath she’d taken her shot. Adrenaline was pumping through her system but she still had to make sure that even after the shot had broken she maintained a slow steady squeeze on the trigger; follow through is everything. So despite the cold and the pain, when she did get her shot she took it; she finished it. Just like she always did. Just like she was trained to do.
Susie Tate is a general practitioner and when she's not working she's looking after her four yummy boys under six (okay one is actually over thirty-six but it's the mental age that counts!). This is the first of her books to be set totally outside the medical world and is a little darker than the others, but hopefully still funny at times.

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley + Giveaway

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


From the Emmy, PEN, Peabody, and Golden Globe Award-winning creator of the TV show Fargo comes the thriller to read in 2016.

On a foggy summer night, eleven people--ten privileged, one down-on-his-luck painter--depart Martha's Vineyard headed for New York. Sixteen minutes later, the unthinkable happens: the passengers disappear into the ocean. The only survivors are Scott Burroughs--the painter--and a four-year-old boy, who is now the last remaining member of a wealthy and powerful media mogul's family.

With chapters weaving between the aftermath of the tragedy and the backstories of the passengers and crew members--including a Wall Street titan and his wife, a Texan-born party boy just in from London, a young woman questioning her path in life, and a career pilot--the mystery surrounding the crash heightens. As the passengers' intrigues unravel, odd coincidences point to a conspiracy: Was it merely dumb chance that so many influential people perished? Or was something far more sinister at work? Events soon threaten to spiral out of control in an escalating storm of media outrage and accusations--all while the reader draws closer and closer to uncovering the truth.

Amid pulse-quickening suspense, the fragile relationship between Scott and the young boy glows at the heart of this stunning novel, raising questions of fate, human nature, and the inextricable ties that bind us together.


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REVIEW

Before the Fall is an excellent book. I like that the chapters both depicted what happened before and after the crash. Before I learned more about every person on the plan, where they just name on a list of dead people. But, slowly the victims in the plane crash started to take form and I felt sorry for (most of them). The last 100 page was intense to read, finally, now the story was starting to reveal what really happened to the plane. 

I found it interesting and sad how quickly people came to question Scott, why he had survived. Especially loathsome in the book is Bill Cunningham. I hope he gets what he deserves too! Speaking of loathsome, Eleanor's husband Doug is probably the books sleaziest characters (together with Bill). He enraged me every time he opened his mouth.  

Then, I came to the end of the book turned the last page and realized that it was no more to the story. So of course, I turned the page back again and then turned it again like it would magically show at least one more chapter. It was like watching Ivanhoe (one again) and hoping that the damn man would pick the right woman at the end of the book, but no, he still makes the wrong decision. Anyway, what I want to say with this was that despite the satisfying ending where we got closure to the story did I like the characters so much that I wanted to know what would happen next in their life. How would it go for little JJ and his aunt Eleanora and would Scott be part of the boy's life, a safe harbor for him? I like to think so.

I want to thank Grand Central Publishing for providing me with a free copy for an honest review!

2 US/CANADA WINNERS WILL RECEIVE A COPY OF BEFORE THE FALL BY NOAH HAWLEY
Before the Fall by Noah Hawley

Monday, 30 May 2016

The 5 best books read in April!

I usually list all the books I have read during a month, but lately, I have felt less and less enjoyment with listing ALL the books I have during a month. So I have I decided to instead just list the top 5 books of the month instead. And since I haven't done April will I start with that first!!

So, in April I read 25 books (including graphic novels and novellas and the best books are:



5 stars:



Jerome Burnel was once a hero. He intervened to prevent multiple killings and in doing so damned himself. His life was torn apart. He was imprisoned, brutalized.

But in his final days, with the hunters circling, he tells his story to private detective Charlie Parker. He speaks of the girl who was marked for death but was saved, of the ones who tormented him, and an entity that hides in a ruined stockade. 

Parker is not like other men. He died, and was reborn. He is ready to wage war. 

Now he will descend upon a strange, isolated community called the Cut, and face down a force of men who rule by terror, intimidation, and murder. 

All in the name of the being they serve. 
All in the name of the Dead King.




Over 2 million copies of his books in print. The first and only author to win back-to-back Edgars for Best Novel. Every book a New York Times bestseller.
Now after five years, John Hart is back with a stunning literary thriller.

Imagine:

A boy with a gun waits for the man who killed his mother.
A troubled detective confronts her past in the aftermath of a brutal shooting.
After thirteen years in prison, a good cop walks free. But for how long?
And deep in the forest, on the altar of an abandoned church, the unthinkable has just happened…
This is a town on the brink. This is a road with no mercy.

After five years, John Hart returns with Redemption Road, his most powerful story yet.



4.5 stars


England, 1921. Three years after her husband, Alex, disappeared, shot down over Germany, Jo Manders still mourns his loss. Working as a paid companion to Alex's wealthy, condescending aunt, Dottie Forsyth, Jo travels to the family’s estate in the Sussex countryside. But there is much she never knew about her husband’s origins…and the revelation of a mysterious death in the Forsyths’ past is just the beginning…

All is not well at Wych Elm House. Dottie's husband is distant, and her son was grievously injured in the war. Footsteps follow Jo down empty halls, and items in her bedroom are eerily rearranged. The locals say the family is cursed, and that a ghost in the woods has never rested. And when Jo discovers her husband’s darkest secrets, she wonders if she ever really knew him. Isolated in a place of deception and grief, she must find the truth or lose herself forever.

And then a familiar stranger arrives at Wych Elm House…

4 stars



Famous killers have fan clubs.

Hamish Wolfe is no different. Locked up for the rest of his life for the abduction and murder of three young women, he gets countless adoring letters every day. He's handsome, charismatic and very persuasive. His admirers are convinced he's innocent, and that he's the man of their dreams.

Who would join such a club?

Maggie Rose is different. Reclusive and enigmatic; a successful lawyer and bestselling true-crime writer, she only takes on cases that she can win.
Hamish wants her as his lawyer, he wants her to change his fate. She thinks she's immune to the charms of a man like this. But maybe not this time . . . 

Would you?




Convicted murderer Melvin Mars is counting down the last hours before his execution--for the violent killing of his parents twenty years earlier--when he's granted an unexpected reprieve. Another man has confessed to the crime.

Amos Decker, newly hired on an FBI special task force, takes an interest in Mars's case after discovering the striking similarities to his own life: Both men were talented football players with promising careers cut short by tragedy. Both men's families were brutally murdered. And in both cases, another suspect came forward, years after the killing, to confess to the crime. A suspect who may or may not have been telling the truth.

The confession has the potential to make Melvin Mars--guilty or not--a free man. Who wants Mars out of prison? And why now?

But when a member of Decker's team disappears, it becomes clear that something much larger--and more sinister--than just one convicted criminal's life hangs in the balance. Decker will need all of his extraordinary brainpower to stop an innocent man from being executed.


Moms On Missions PreOrder Blitz by Jess Molly Brown


 Title: Moms On Missions
Series: Mommageddon Series #1
By: Jess Molly Brown
Publication Date: May, 2016
Genre: Contemporary/Humor Women's Fiction


Artist Vince Russo wants to advance his career but his devout mother, Diana, wants grandchildren. Vince lives in Niagara Falls, the Romance Capital of the World, and he doesn’t even date! Diana joins the Moms on Missions (“MOM”), who strive to better the lives of their clients’ kids. MOM installs Vince’s fantasy girl upstairs in the duplex where he lives. Their pick for Vince is sick of dancing to her mother’s tune, so she certainly won’t admit she finds her sensitive, playful neighbour sexy. However, she’d love to make him her pseudo-boyfriend to get MOM off her back. Will these young rebels come together organically, or is there no hope for their moms?
Amazon UK - https://goo.gl/6xz9hB
Amazon CA - https://goo.gl/lzRNsI
“Fuck you!” Drum Boy slams Mrs. P.'s door in his superintendent’s face. Vince stares open-mouthed at the door in front of him, then turns on the landing to find Paeng at the foot of the stairs, dressed for bed, with no glasses. Steaming, Vince tromps back down the stairs, in time to hear the drumming start again. “What a nerve this guy's got! Little shit.” Now Drum Boy is singing, too. Badly. Vince stops, wondering whether to turn around and march back up there to rattle his teeth. Instead, he stomps back into his unit, Paeng at his back, and calls Damon. “Vince, hey, how’s it hangin’?” Damon asks cheerfully. “Want to hit The Hill for a few beers? I’m dying to get out for a bit.” “No. Do you hear this?” Vince holds up his phone to the ceiling, hoping it picks up the noise. Boom boom chuck budda boom boom chuck budda “I don’t need a frickin’ girlfriend!” Boom boom chuck budda boom boom chuck . . . “My neighbour is an asshole!” “What is that?” Damon asks stupidly. “It's your new tenant,” Vince growls. “He drums twenty-four seven. I have explained this to you, Damon. Twice. The last time Paeng and I had two minutes’ peace was the day before he moved in. I am losing it, man. I’m going to go postal soon. If I do, you are going to have to explain why to our mothers, and you are going to have to comfort them both while I’m getting corn-holed in Kingston Pen for capping the little bastard, capisce?” “Whoa-ho-ho, there Vince! Did you say there's a guy living up there? It was supposed to be Mrs. Maggione’s friend Gloria’s daughter, Mary. She’s gor—” Damon checks himself, and Vince scowls. “Um, I mean uh . . . Trudy?” he calls to his wife. “Get me another beer!” Vince counts to ten. “Did Moms on Missions set this up?” There is silence for a couple beats. From Damon, not Drum Boy. The noise from above is as obnoxious as ever. Damon sighs. “Yeah, you know it. I didn't even meet the Chiclet.” “No, no, it’s a guy! And the name on the mailbox says D. Darren, not M. diGiordano. Why didn’t you come to check out the tenant?” “My mother wouldn't put a crackhead in there, ya know?” “And a drummer makes a better tenant because . . .”




Don’t be fooled by the seeming tranquility, Jess is scheming. There are a lot of characters in her head and all of them are yelling for attention.
She edits for professional authors and is always tutoring somebody. She got her start six years ago, in fan fiction, and is proud of it.
Four great kids, one husband *coughbiggestkidofallcough* and two dogs ensure that the house is always messy. The garden’s overflowing with blooms, but weedy. The grass always needs cutting, provided it’s not buried beneath snow. She lives in Canada, eh? The dogs are walked, the kids get fed, the hubbs hasn’t killed anybody yet, the books Jess reads she reviews, and somehow, the people in her head manage to make it into stories. Occasionally, she embarrasses her kids by doing Zumba in front of their friends. It’s just how she rolls.

Come join her quest for world domination at http://www.jessmollybrownauthor.com
Social Media Links


Carrying Albert Home: The Somewhat True Story of A Man, His Wife, and Her Alligator by Homer Hickam (SWE/ENG)

Carrying Albert Home: The Somewhat True Story of A Man, His Wife, and Her Alligator by Homer Hickam
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

SWEDISH REVIEW

Elsie Lavender och Homer Hickam går i samma highschoolklass i kolrika West Virginia under den stora depressionen i slutet av 1920-talet. Homer friar, Elsie tackar nej och flyttar till Florida där hon förälskar sig i skådespelaren Buddy Ebsen. Hennes dröm om en framtid med Buddy stannar vid en dröm när han drar till New York. Elsie återvänder hem och gifter sig med Homer.

I stället för glamorös skådespelarhustru är Elsie nu fru till en kolarbetare. Men hon blir ständigt påmind om det ljuva livet i Florida på grund av Buddys något udda bröllopspresent till Elsie: en alligator vid namn Albert. Elsie låter Albert bo i husets enda badrum. När alligatorn en dag hugger tag i Homers byxor och skrämmer livet ur honom, ställer han ett ultimatum till sin fru: Du får välja – antingen mig eller Albert. Elsie inser att det enda rätta är att sätta Albert i baksätet och köra honom tillbaka hem.

Med Albert i baksätet är en underhållande, galen och ibland lite tragisk berättelse om ett ungt pars 1000 mil långa äventyr med en alligator i baksätet.

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Vilken otroligt härlig bok! Från första sidan fastnade jag för denna bok och det var inte alls svårt att klämma den på två dagar. Berättelsen är besynnerlig, otroligt mysig men även lite sorglig. Jag måste erkänna att slutet var svårt att läsa för att jag verkligen hade blivit fäst vid Albert, Elsie, Homer och tuppen.

Kändes berättelsen lite väl fantastisk ibland? Javisst, men det är charmen med boken. Jag tyckte om att läsa om denna 1000 mila resa pga av att man både fick den nakna verkligheten av USA på 30-talet blandat med en knasig berättelse där både John Steinbeck och Ernest Hemingway gör inhopp. 

Denna bok är en sådan bok som jag utan tvekan skulle rekommendera till någon som vill ha en kul bok, som gör en glad men som även visar på att livet inte alltid är en dans på rosor och ibland så måste man välja mellan två saker man verkligen älskar. Och i det här fallet står valet mellan en man och en alligator...

Tack till HarperCollins Nordic för recensionexemplaret!

ENGLISH REVIEW

Elsie Lavender and Homer Hickam (the father of the author) were high school classmates in the West Virginia coalfields, graduating just as the Great Depression began. When Homer asked for her hand, Elsie instead headed to Orlando where she sparked with a dancing actor named Buddy Ebsen (yes, that Buddy Ebsen). But when Buddy headed for New York, Elsie’s dreams of a life with him were crushed and eventually she found herself back in the coalfields, married to Homer.

Unfulfilled as a miner’s wife, Elsie was reminded of her carefree days with Buddy every day because of his unusual wedding gift: an alligator named Albert she raised in the only bathroom in the house. When Albert scared Homer by grabbing his pants, he gave Elsie an ultimatum: “Me or that alligator!” After giving it some thought, Elsie concluded there was only one thing to do: Carry Albert home.

Carrying Albert Home is the funny, sweet, and sometimes tragic tale of a young couple and a special alligator on a crazy 1000-mile adventure. Told with the warmth and down-home charm that made Rocket Boys/October Sky a beloved bestseller, Homer Hickam’s rollicking tale is ultimately a testament to that strange and marvelous emotion we inadequately call love.

**********

What an amazingly book! I loved the book from the first page and it wasn't at all hard reading it in two days. The story is quirky, incredibly cozy, but also a bit sad. I must admit that I found the ending a bit hard to read because I had become attached to Albert, Elise, Homer, and the rooster.

Did the book feel a bit too fantastic now and then? Oh yes, but that's the charming part of the book. I loved reading this 1000 mile long journey because you got both the naked truth about life in the 30s in the USA together with a weird story where both John Steinbeck and Ernest Hemingway show up.

I would without a doubt, recommend to someone who wants to read something fun, something that makes one happy, but at the same time show that life isn't always perfect and sometimes you have to choose between two things you love. And, in this case, the choice is between a husband and an alligator...

Thanks to HarperCollins Nordic for the review copy!

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Burying the Honeysuckle Girls by Emily Carpenter

Burying the Honeysuckle Girls by Emily Carpenter
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Althea Bell is still heartbroken by her mother’s tragic, premature death—and tormented by the last, frantic words she whispered into young Althea’s ear: Wait for her. For the honeysuckle girl. She’ll find you, I think, but if she doesn’t, you find her.

Adrift ever since, Althea is now fresh out of rehab and returning to her family home in Mobile, Alabama, determined to reconnect with her estranged, ailing father. While Althea doesn’t expect him, or her politically ambitious brother, to welcome her with open arms, she’s not prepared for the chilling revelation of a grim, long-buried family secret. Fragile and desperate, Althea escapes with an old flame to uncover the truth about her lineage. Drawn deeper into her ancestors’ lives, Althea begins to unearth their disturbing history…and the part she’s meant to play in it.

Gripping and visceral, this unforgettable debut delves straight into the heart of dark family secrets and into one woman’s emotional journey to save herself from a sinister inheritance.

**********

Burying the Honeysuckle Girls is a great, although tragic tale about four generations of women that are said to always get schizophrenic by the age of 30. Althea Bell is turning 30 in a couple of days and she is worrying that it's her turn to become ill. She and a childhood friend set out to find out the truth about her mother, her grandmother, and great grandmother. Women that she doesn't know much about. But, there are those that want to stop her search no matter the cost.

I was instantly intrigued by the story. I found Althea a fascinating character and the mystery surrounding her family was tantalizing. It's a book that made me both sad and angry at the men that have in generations suppressed women, even in modern time as Althea's story will show. It's an engrossing tale, we both get to follow Althea as she learns about her family's past and her great grandmother Jinn whose independence, or wish for independence is thwarted constantly by her family.

I couldn't stop reading the last part of the book, despite how late it was and that I had to work the next day. It was so fascinating to read and part of me was sad when I turned the page because I really, really came to enjoy reading about Althea, Trix, Collie and Jinn.

It's a fantastic book! I recommend it warmly!     

I want to thank Lake Union Publishing for providing me with a free copy for an honest review!

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Spotlight: Daddy Dearest by Paul Southern

An estranged father’s weekend with his beloved five-year-old daughter turns into a nightmare when she gets into the lift of a city centre tower block and goes down without him. She vanishes without a trace. It sets off a race against time, and a nationwide manhunt, to find her. As the police investigation closes in, suspicion falls on those closest to her - with devastating consequences. Daddy Dearest is a terrifying story of love, obsession and psychological meltdown.

'My daughter has always had a thing about lifts. There’s something about the thrill of pressing a button and seeing the lift doors close which excites her imagination. It terrifies me. Every time she walks in, I imagine it’s the last time I’ll see her. What if she hits the button before I get there? What if the lift doors close and I can’t get her out? It drives me nuts. There are eight floors in the Sears building, nine if you count the basement, and the lift is fast: more like a fairground ride, really. It does top to bottom in twelve seconds. I’ve timed it. Taking the stairs, I’ve done it in forty-two. That leaves a gap of thirty seconds. You’d be surprised what can happen in that time. I was.'

Released June 1st on Amazon / Smashwords.





Links







Biography

Following an induced labour some time in the 1960s (due date: Halloween night), I had my subscription to a normal life revoked by itinerant parents, who moved from city to city. Lived in Liverpool, Belfast, London and Leeds, then escaped to university, where I nearly died of a brain haemorrhage. After an unexpected recovery, formed an underground indie group (Sexus). Met the lead singer through standing on a bee. Made immediate plans to become rich and famous, but ended up in Manchester. Shared a house with mice, cockroaches, and slugs; shared the street with criminals.

Five years later, hit the big time with a Warners record deal. Concerts at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, Melody Maker front cover, Smash Hits Single of the Week, Radio 1 and EastEnders. Mixed with the really rich and famous. Then mixed with lawyers. Ended up back in Manchester, broke. Got a PhD in English (I am the world's leading authority on Tennyson's stage plays), then wrote my first novel, The Craze, based on my experiences of the Muslim community. Immediately nominated to the Arena X Club (the name Arena magazine gave to a select group of creative, UK-based men responsible for shaping the way their readers lived and enjoyed their lives). Wrote a second book, Brown Boys in Chocolate, which predicted the London bombings. Fell foul of the censors and subsequently gagged by the press. Got ITV interested in a story on honour killings and inter-racial marriages and was commissioned to write a screenplay (Pariah) based on my life story. ITV balked at the content.

Subsequently, trod the Wasteland before finding the grail again: a book deal with children's publisher, Chicken House. Killing Sound, a YA horror set on the London Underground, was published by them in September 2014. The book, originally written for older teens (16+) and adults, was censoriously edited by the publishers to fit a much younger demographic, and inevitably failed to reach either market; the grail proved elusive and I returned to writing something it was impossible to dilute. Daddy Dearest, a dark, psychological thriller, will be released in 2016.

Friday, 27 May 2016

Batman: Europa by Brian Azzarello

Batman: Europa by Brian Azzarello
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The greatest talents of American and European comics unite for a Batman story like none other! Written by Matteo Casali (CATWOMAN) and Brian Azzarello (DARK KNIGHT III: THE MASTER RACE), BATMAN: EUROPA features art by superstar Jim Lee (JUSTICE LEAGUE) as well as European comics artist superstars Giuseppe Camuncoli (Spider-Man), Diego Latorre and Gerard Parel.

The Dark Knight is finally facing an enemy that even he can’t defeat—a deadly, custom-engineered virus that will drive him mad and then kill him within a week. But Batman isn’t the only one infected…the homicidal madman known as the Joker is also stricken.

Now, the two mortal enemies must rely on each other if either one is to survive. As they follow the clues, their search for the man who targeted them has them crisscrossing Europe—following clues in Berlin, fighting automatons in Prague, haunting the Paris catacombs and more.

Can Batman and Joker survive working together? Or will the Dark Knight and his deadliest enemy die together, far from Gotham City?

Collects BATMAN: EUROPA #1-4 of the 4-issue miniseries.


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You know you have procrastinated enough when you can't find the images you have screen capped for a graphic novel. But, never mind that, I can write a review without any images to accompany it. But, it makes the review a little less fun to do and I can't show you all the quality of the art. However, most of Batman: Europa was quite nice, the only part that I found a bit hard to see what has going on was when Batman and Joker were in Paris and they are starting to feel the effect of the virus and the art is showing that. Other than that, pretty much the whole volume was good.

However, the story was nothing really special, which surprised me because here we have two arch nemeses working together for a cure and one would think that it would be pretty cool to read about that, but I actually found myself not really overwhelmed with the story, a bit too much I need to finish this volume rather than I want to finish the volume. Sure, there were some good parts, the fact that the Joker and Batman were "working" together was a cool idea. 

Then we have the ending, to be honest. I was not really impressed with whom was behind it all. No real wow feeling. 

So, not my favourite volume, it had some good parts, the art was good, but the story was not fantastic. A good read, nothing more.

I want to thank DC Comics for providing me with a free copy for an honest review!

Cover Reveal‏: Breakfast at Poldark's by Samantha Tonge

DREAMING OF THE PERFECT MAN?


Kate Golightly needs to move forward and what better way to do that then with a trip to the Cornish coast with best friend and boss, Izzy.

The sea wind is just what Kate needs to finally relax and begin to let go of her past. Except she’s suddenly got one big reason to panic! She RSVP’d ‘yes’ to the Queen Bee of her high school’s wedding saying she’s bringing her boyfriend (she doesn’t have one) who looks just like Ross Poldark!

With only two weeks to find the Poldark look-alike of her dreams Kate is under a lot of pressure for the Cornish coast to deliver…

A hilarious and moving romantic novel from bestselling author, Samantha Tonge. A must-read this summer!

Links: 

About Samantha Tonge

Samantha lives in Cheshire with her lovely family and a cat that thinks it's a dog. Along with writing, her days are spent cycling, willing cakes to rise and avoiding housework. A love of fiction developed as a child, when she was known for reading Enid Blyton books in the bath. A desire to write bubbled away in the background whilst she pursued other careers, including a fun stint working at Disneyland Paris. Formally trained as a linguist, Samantha now likes nothing more than holing herself up in the spare room, in front of the keyboard. She has sold over 80 stories to women's magazines. Her bestselling debut novel, "Doubting Abbey", from CarinaUK HarperCollins, was shortlisted for the Festival of Romantic Fiction best Ebook award in 2014. Game of Scones won the 2015 Love Stories Awards Best Romantic Ebook category.

Links:



Thursday, 26 May 2016

Cover Crush: The House of Hawthorne by Erika Robuck











Erin over at Flashlight Commentary is the one that came up with the cover crush idea and I loved it so much that I decided that every Thursday would I post a cover that I really love. 

Check out this week's cover crush over at Flashlight Commentary, 2 Kids and Tired Books, Layered Pages and The Maidens Court!

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This week's Cover Crush is for Erika Robuck's The House of Hawthorne. It's such a beautiful cover. I like the original hardcover cover as well, but I think like this lighter cover that they chose for the paperback version a bit more. But, both of them are covers eye-catching and would certainly make me stop in a bookstore to check them out.



Original hardcover cover:



Ordeal by Jørn Lier Horst (SWE/ENG)

Ordeal by Jørn Lier Horst
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


SWEDISH REVIEW

En kall januarinatt försvinner taxichauffören Jens Hummel spårlöst. Det går ett halvår utan att man hittar någon ledtråd. William Wisting, som ansvarar för utredningen, får kritik i media och av överordnade för uteblivna resultat.

Wistings dotter Line, som tagit ledigt från jobbet och snart ska föda sitt första barn, har fått en ny vän: Sofie, ensamstående mamma med en ettårig dotter. Sofie har ärvt ett hus efter sin morfar, Frank Mandt, som polisen länge misstänkt för diverse skumraskaffärer.

Line och Sofie träffas allt oftare, och när de hittar ett låst kassaskåp i källaren till Sofies hus blir Line nyfiken. I skåpet finner de en revolver och en mycket stor summa pengar med missfärgade kanter.
Polisen misslyckades med att sätta dit Frank Mandt så länge han levde och Line anser att de måste informera ordningsmakten om vapnet. Hon lämnar in det anonymt men kan inte undanhålla sanningen för sin pappa. Till Wistings förvåning visar det sig att revolvern har en koppling till ett ouppklarat mordfall, och dessutom till taxichaufförens Jens Hummels försvinnande.

Wisting ställs inför ett svårt val – ska han missbruka dotterns förtroende eller åsidosätta lojaliteten med den organisation han själv är en del av?


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Blindgång är den första boken jag har läst i William Wisting serien och trots att det är bok 10 så hade jag inga problem med att hänga med i handlingen. Jag kom att gilla William Wisting och hans dotter redan från början. Jag tyckte att de hade en väldigt fin relation och jag är nyfiken på Lines situation då hon är gravid och pappan till barnet är en amerikansk polis som bor i Amerika. Jag måste verkligen läsa de tidigare böckerna för att få reda på varför han var i Norge och arbetade och hur de träffades.

Handlingen var intressant, en försvunnen taxiförare, ett mord och ett upphittat vapen som har kopplingar med varandra. Jag gillade verkligen hur både William och Line är involverade i fallet på olika sätt och hur slumpmässiga möten och handlingar till slut ger svar på gåtan med vad som kände med taxichauffören Jens Hummel.

Boken är oerhört välskriven och spännande att läsa och jag tyckte att slutet i rättegångssalen är otroligt bra!

Tack till Lind & Co för recensionexemplaret!

ENGLISH REVIEW

The Hummel case has bothered William Wisting for more than six months. The investigation into what happened when taxi-driver Jens Hummel disappeared has been fruitless, and he has to endure criticism. 

A crucial discovery directs suspicion at Dan Roger ‘Danny’ Brodin. The problem is, however, that Danny is already in prison, convicted of another murder. Wisting is accustomed to building up a solid case for the prosecution, but this time things are different. Now he has to use all his expertise and experience to unpick a case that other people already believe to be over and done with. He follows his own convictions - all the way into the courtroom.



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Ordeal is the first book I have read in the William Wisting series and, despite this being book, 10 didn't I have any problems getting into the story. Instead, I found myself instantly liking both William Wisting and his daughter Line. I thought that they had a very loving relationship and I was curious about Line's situation being pregnant and the dad is a cop from America who is still living there. I really need to read the previous book to find out why he was in Norway and how they met.

The story is interesting, a missing taxi driver, a murder and a found weapon that have connections with each other. I liked that both William and Line were involved in the case in different kinds of ways and thanks to random meetings and events finally the mystery with the missing taxi driver will be resolved.

The book is well written and engrossing and I think the ending in the courtroom is incredibly good! I liked this book very much and I will definitely read more books in this series.

Thanks to Lind & Co for the review copy!