Tuesday, 31 January 2017

The Day That Never Comes by Caimh McDonnell Blog Tour

The Day That Never Comes by Caimh McDonnell
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Remember those people that destroyed the economy and then cruised off on their yachts? Well guess what - someone is killing them.

Dublin is in the middle of a heat wave and tempers are running high. The Celtic Tiger is well and truly dead, activists have taken over the headquarters of a failed bank, the trial of three unscrupulous property developers teeters on the brink of collapse, and in the midst of all this, along comes a mysterious organisation hell-bent on exacting bloody vengeance in the name of the little guy.

Paul Mulchrone doesn’t care about any of this; he has problems of his own. His newly established detective agency is about to be DOA. One of his partners won’t talk to him for very good reasons and the other has seemingly disappeared off the face of the earth for no reason at all. Can he hold it together long enough to figure out what Bunny McGarry’s colourful past has to do with his present absence?

When the law and justice no longer mean the same thing, on which side will you stand?

The Day That Never Comes is the second book in Caimh McDonnell’s Dublin trilogy, which melds fast-paced action with a distinctly Irish acerbic wit.


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Caimh McDonnell where have you been all my life? Seriously, this is the first book in forever that have made me laugh out loud. Now, this book is book two in the Dublin trilogy, but it's no problem whatsoever to read this as a stand-alone since that is what I've done. And, honestly, why haven't I read the first book yet? I mean I even have it. Had it for month's before I started to read this book for the blog tour. *sigh* I can only say that I have a lot of books, and I comfort myself that I have the joy of reading A Man With One of Those Faces when I get some time over for it.

Alright, back to The Day That Never Comes. Since I haven't read the previous book didn't I have any previous knowledge about the characters, but I quickly got the gist. Paul, not a very good private detective and a cheating son of a bitch. Brigit his partner and girlfriend and the one that was cheated on and who doesn't want to see and talk to Paul. And, then we have Bunny, the ex-cop with a reputation has gone missing.

Paul got a lucky break when he gets a case, but at the same time, he also gets the news that Bunny is missing and he needs to find him. However, that's a problem since Bridgit is not there. And, without Brigit, well, Paul is not a very good private detective, I mean he can't even stalk someone properly. In the meantime, there are a lot of things going on with the trial of three unscrupulous property developers and activists have taken over the headquarters of a failed bank. At first, I did not know where the story would go, but then everything started to make sense as the story progress. And, let me tell you, the story is crazy, the humor is on top. This is a perfect mix of crime and humor and I just totally adore the characters. My laughing out loud moments came at the end with a scene with Bunny. Man, I just love him.

The Day That Never Comes is one of the funniest books I have ever read. I loved every minute of the book. As a treat will I leave you all with a quote from the book:

"I need your help," he continued. "Look, can you open the door so we can talk about this?" "No!" said Brigit, stamping her foot for emphasis. "I'm never, ever opening this door or anything else to you ever again, ye… prick!" Seriously – she knew hundreds of swear words. She had three older brothers. "Me and my friends are having a party and then later, a man is going to deliver some Indian food and… and, I'm going to have sex with him!" "OK," said Paul. "The delivery guy is actually here with your food. He's standing right beside me." "Right, good. Tell him I will be with him presently." "Ehm… he's gone again." "Not him," said Brigit. "A different guy. He plays rugby for Leinster." "And he delivers Indian food?" "Shut up!" said Brigit, "shut the hell up! You don't get to break my heart and then come around here and make me feel stupid. I feel stupid enough when you're not here ye… ye… oh for… what's another word like prick?" "Arsehole?" said Paul. "Thank you," said Brigit. "Arsehole!"

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy for an honest review! 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Caimh is a man who wears many hats. As well as being an author, he is an award-winning writer for TV, a stand-up comedian and 'the voice of London Irish' rugby club. A Man With One of Those Faces is his first novel and he proudly considers it the best thing he has ever done. It is a crime thriller set in his home town of Dublin and is laced with a distinctly Irish dark sense of humour.

In TV land, he has written for some of the biggest shows on British telly, including Mock the Week, The Sarah Millican TV Programme and Have I got News for You. He has also written a load of kids TV, including a cartoon series which he created and was BAFTA nominated for.







A Man with One of Those Faces 


The Day That Never Comes





Monday, 30 January 2017

Law and Disorder (The Finnegan Connection) by Heather Graham Blog Tour

About Law and Disorder (The Finnegan Connection)

Series: The Finnegan Connection

Mass Market Paperback: 256 pages

Publisher: Harlequin Intrigue (January 17, 2017)


Trust the enemy?

Desperate to escape her kidnappers, Kody Cameron can turn to only one man… and he’s holding a gun. Outnumbered and trapped in the deadly Everglades, she has little recourse, but something in this captor’s eyes makes her believe she can trust him. Does she dare to take the risk?

Undercover agent Nick Connolly has met Kody before and knows she might very well blow his cover. Though determined to maintain his facade, he can’t let Kody die. He won’t. And his decision to change his own rules of law and order are about to make all hell break loose.


Purchase Links

READ AN EXCERPT FROM THE BOOK:

“It’s ironic, isn’t it, that I saw you in New York City? Never here,” she said.

He grinned at that. “Millions of people live in this area. I don’t suppose it’s odd in any way that people from South Florida never met. It’s just odd that we wound up here together in this way after we did see each other in New York. I was probably a few years ahead of you in school. I went to Killian—and then on to the University of Florida. I was in Miami-Dade Homicide…and then the FBI,” Nick told her. “And, for the last ten months or so, I’ve been on the task force with Craig. For the last few weeks, I’ve been undercover as Barrow.”

“Incredible,” she murmured.

“Not really.”

She stared at him a moment longer and then smiled. And he thought that she really was beautiful—a perfect ingénue for whatever play it was she was doing.

She walked over to him.

“Well, I’m alive, thanks to you,” she murmured.

“It’s my job,” he said. “It never should have gone this far. I should have been able to stop Dillinger at the mansion. I should have—”

He suddenly remembered the day she’d brushed by him at Finnegan’s. He knew then he would have liked to have met her. Now…

They were safe—relatively safe, at any rate. They’d come far from Dillinger and his insanity. Jason Tiger was a great agent who knew this area and loved it, knew the good, the bad and the ugly of it, and would find and save Vince and Flynn if anyone could.

He would have given so much to smile, think they were back, way back before any of this, imagine that they’d really met, gone out…that he could pull her into his arms, hold her, feel her, kiss her lips…

But Nick was still an agent.

He was still on duty.

“Should have what?” she asked softly.

“Should have been able to finish it all earlier,” he said softly.

She still held the bag of coffee. He took it gently from her fingers and headed into the kitchen to mea­sure it out. In no time, he heard the sound as it began to perc.

She still stood in the living room of the cabin, look­ing out. He saw that she walked to the door to assure herself it was locked. She turned, probably aware that he was studying her.

“Windows?” she asked with a grimace. “I’m usu­ally not the paranoid type.”

“They’ve got locks, I’m sure,” Nick said. He crossed the room to join her at the left window to check.

It was impossible.

They’d been crawling around in fetid swamp water, muck and more. Yet there was still something sweet and alluring in her scent.

She looked at him. Her face was close, so close. Her lips…so tempting.

Get a grip! he told himself.



About Heather Graham

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Heather Graham has written more than a hundred novels. She’s a winner of the RWA’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Thriller Writers’ Silver Bullet. She is an active member of International Thriller Writers and Mystery Writers of America. For more information, check out her websites: TheOriginalHeatherGraham.com, eHeatherGraham.com, and HeatherGraham.tv.

You can also find Heather on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Heather Graham’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Tuesday, January 17th: The Sassy Bookster – excerpt

Wednesday, January 18th: A Holland Reads

Thursday, January 19th: Bewitched Bookworms

Friday, January 20th: A Chick Who Reads

Tuesday, January 24th: Mama Vicky Says

Wednesday, January 25th: Books a la Mode – excerpt

Friday, January 27th: Books and Spoons

Monday, January 30th: A Bookaholic Swede – excerpt

Tuesday, January 31st: Snowdrop Dreams of Books

Wednesday, February 1st: Stranded in Chaos

Friday, February 3rd: Staircase Wit

Monday, February 6th: Book Reviews and More by Kathy – excerpt

Monday, February 6th: From the TBR Pile

Wednesday, February 8th: Dog Eared Daydreams

Friday, February 10th: Not in Jersey

Monday, February 13th: Becky on Books

Wednesday, February 15th: Reading Reality



The Wild Horse Springs by Jodi Thomas Blog Tour

About Wild Horse Springs

Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages

Publisher: HQN Books (January 24, 2017)


In the heart of Ransom Canyon, sometimes the right match for a lonely soul is the one you least expect.

Dan Brigman may not lead the most exciting life, but he’s proud of what he’s achieved: he’s a respected lawman, and he’s raised a bright, talented daughter on his own. But finding a lone, sparkly blue boot in the middle of a deserted highway gets him thinking maybe the cowgirl who lost it is exactly the shake-up he needs.

After losing her baby girl, Brandi Malone felt like her soul died along with her daughter. Now singing in small-town bars to make ends meet, she’s fine being a drifter—until a handsome sheriff makes her believe that parking her boots under his bed is a better option.

College grad Lauren Brigman has just struck out on her own in downtown Dallas when a troubling phone call leads her back home to Crossroads. Her hometown represents her family, friends and deepest hopes, but also her first love, Lucas Reyes. Will Lauren’s homecoming be another heartbreak, or a second chance for her and Lucas?


Purchase Links
Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

READ AN EXCERPT FROM THE BOOK:

He remembered how Lauren was always telling him he needed to go out now and then. Maybe he could text her a picture of the boot and tell her he’d made the first step. Lauren had probably meant he should date one of the church ladies who asked him for favors, such as judging the jams competitions for char­ity, or invited him to the Wednesday-morning break­fast because they “needed more men.” His daughter had not meant for him to step out with the kind of woman who’d wear a rhinestone boot.

It was almost one o’clock when the sheriff pulled into the Two Step Saloon’s dirt parking lot. The bar was outside the city limits of Crossroads, but Dan swore he could hear the bass beating some nights from his office a few miles away. Most Friday nights he would have already had at least one call from the bartender before now. But since the Nowhere Club opened thirty miles south of Crossroads, business had dropped off along with arrests in Dan’s county.

Grabbing the boot, Dan walked into the Two Step. Maybe, if the place wasn’t too loud, or the folks too drunk, someone would remember seeing a lady wearing blue boots.

He relaxed. The main room was only half-full and most of the crowd looked far more interested in talk­ing than fighting. Ike Perez, the owner, had put in a big-screen TV. If a game wasn’t on, he played reruns. The drunks didn’t seem to care. They cheered and bet as if they hadn’t seen the game before.

“Evening, Sheriff,” the bartender said as she reached for a cup and the coffeepot. “Wondered if you’d make it in tonight.”

Dan stood at the corner of the bar, his back al­most touching the wall. It was the only spot in the room where he could see the whole place. “Evening, Kimmie.” The bartender might have been in AA for ten years, but she was still working making drinks. She reminded Dan of an old bull rider who walked among rough stock on the night before a rodeo. Kim­mie might not take the ride anymore, but she stayed near the noise and the excitement.

When he set the fancy boot next to his cup, Kim­mie winked at him. “If that’s your date, I’d say you lost a bit of her on the way in.”

Dan shrugged. “Story of my life. I start out with a woman and end up with a boot.”

Kimmie crossed her arms and leaned against the railing of the bar that was just right to be boob-resting height to her. “It might help, Sheriff, if you didn’t wear your gun and uniform on a date. You’re one fine-looking man, tall, lean and just enough gray to tell a lady that you probably know what you’re doing, but, honey, all that hardware around your waist won’t encourage any woman to cuddle up.”


About Jodi Thomas

New York Times bestselling author Jodi Thomas is a fifth-generation Texan who sets many of her stories in her home state, where her grandmother was born in a covered wagon. She is a certified marriage and family counselor, a Texas Tech graduate and writer-in-residence at West Texas A&M University. She lives with her husband in Amarillo, Texas.


Connect with Jodi



Jodi Thomas’ TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Thursday, January 26th: Book Reviews and More by Kathy – Excerpt

Friday, January 27th: Patricia’s Wisdom

Monday, January 30th: A Bookaholic Swede – Excerpt

Wednesday, February 1st: From the TBR Pile

Friday, February 3rd: Black ‘n Gold Girl’s Book Spot

Wednesday, February 8th: The Sassy Bookster

Thursday, February 9th: Buried Under Romance – Excerpt and review

Friday, February 10th: A Chick Who Reads

Monday, February 13th: Books a la Mode – Excerpt

Monday, February 13th: Books and Spoons

Wednesday, February 15th: Diary of a Stay at Home Mom

Thursday, February 16th: Bewitched Bookworms

Friday, February 17th: Stranded in Chaos

Monday, February 20th: Books and Bindings

Monday, February 20th: Pretty Little Book Reviews

Tuesday, February 21st: Romantic Reads and Such – Excerpt

Tuesday, February 21st: Becca the Bibliophile

Wednesday, February 22nd: Becky on Books

Date TBD: Susan Peterson

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#BookReview The Last Flag by Wren Cavanagh

The Last Flag by Wren Cavanagh
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What would you do to pay the bills; to survive, or to just get rich, would you compete against other teams in a quarantined town filthy with zombies wanting to bite out your throat?
Emma and Lewis sign up for the race, they need the money to save his life. But they won't just be racing the dead, the surprise blizzard or the other contestants.

Because anger and vengeance know no bounds and like everyone in the blighted town they become pawns in a game of retribution.

The contestants become nothing more than live entertainment to viewers who watch and judge their every move in the town of Prideful as they race each other to arrive alive to a final flag. The team that makes will get airlifted out alive and go back home richer for it, the others walk back to a pittance and if they are not careful. They won't get out at all.


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This is actually how I imagine the zombie apocalypse to be, a way for people to earn money. Both, those that can profit from it by even thinking of a TV show where people must go through a town full of zombies to find flags and people that can earn "easy" money fast.

The Last Flag, is just as the title describes a book about different groups fighting for flags and their lives. I found the book to be very refreshing to read because it felt very different from what I'm used to when it comes to zombies. Instead of people getting surprised by zombies and are trying to hide from them are the people on the teams' hellbent on winning cash. And, don't get attached to the people in this book. It may start off slowly, not much interaction with the zombies, but there comes a moment when everything starts to go to hell, not for the people on the teams, but for the ones behind the show. That's another thing I really liked about this book. There are a lot of things going on behind the camera that, well screw things up for some people.

This is the third book I have read by Wren Cavanagh and just like Arachnohazard and Bits and Pieces were this book a great read. I liked the humor in this book, and the action and I especially liked that Cavanagh manages to make a trite subject like zombies interesting again.

I want to thank the author for providing me with a free copy for an honest review!

Sunday, 29 January 2017

#BookReview Liv by Mikaela Bley (SWE/ENG)

Liv by Mikaela Bley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

SWEDISH REVIEW

Det är en varm dag i slutet av augusti när kriminalreportern Ellen Tamm lämnar Stockholm för att åka till sitt föräldrahem i Sörmland. Hon kan inte längre fly från det förflutna och de mörka minnen som väcktes till liv när hon rapporterade om fallet Lycke i början av sommaren. Nu ska hon tillbaka till platsen där allt började, när hon var åtta år och hennes tvillingsyster dog. När Ellen stannar för att tanka i Stentuna, utmed riksväg 52, får hon höra att en kvinna har hittats brutalt ihjälslagen vid en åker en bit därifrån. Ingen tycks veta vem hon var eller vad hon gjorde i trakten, och mordet skakar många i byn.

Ellen börjar nysta i den döda kvinnans öde och ju mer hon börjar gräva i vad som hänt, desto mer inser hon att småstadsidyllen rymmer mörka hemligheter och att det är mycket som inte är som det verkar. Inte minst när det gäller henne själv och systerns död.

Spänningsromanen Liv är den andra boken i serien om den egensinniga TV4-journalisten Ellen Tamm, och en fristående fortsättning på Lycke som kom ut 2015

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Jag läste Lycke nyligen och den var en snabbläst bok, dock så fann jag storyn inte speciellt komplicerad eller anmärkningsvärd. Men den var underhållande att läsa, en perfekt bok när man vill ha något inte alltför djupt men inte för lätt att läsa. Sådär alldeles lagom. Liv, däremot, nu börjar det lika något, den boken handlingen kändes mycket mer spännande och intressant. Men så är den lantliga idyllen ute i Sverige och vad som kan döljas där ibland klart mer intressant att läsa om än vad som händer i storstäderna. För vem vem vad som döljer sig bakom de fina husfasaderna med den välklippta gräsmattorna.

För Ellen Tamm är tanken på att återvända hem inte så lockande, men efter Lycke fallet så hennes liv havererat och nu har hennes mamma bestämt att hon ska hem då hon inte verkar klara sig själv längre. Men hon hinner inte ens hem innan hon får reda på att en kvinna har bragts om livet och att mordet var synnerligen våldsamt. Ellen kan inte låt bli att undersöka mordet och upptäcker att den lilla staden Stentuna har sina mörka hemligheter...

Denna bok var stråket vassare än debutboken Lycke. Jag fann storyn engagerande och jag gillade att Ellen började gräva i vad som hände den dagen hennes tvillingsyster dog. Jag tycker om böcker vars handling utspelas i småstäder där alla känner alla och jag var överraskad när jag insåg just vad för slags hemligheter som doldes under ytan. Slutet lämnade mig med en önskan att få läsa mera och jag hoppas på en fortsättning snart.

Tack till Lind & Co för recensionexemplaret!


ENGLISH REVIEW

It's a warm day in late August when crime reporter Ellen Tamm leaves Stockholm to go to her family home in Sörmland. She can no longer escape from the past and the dark memories that were brought to life when she reported the case about the missing girl Lycke in the early summer. Now she is back to where it all started when she was eight and her twin sister died. When Ellen stops to refuel in Stentuna, along Highway 52, is she was told that a woman has been found brutally murdered in a field some distance away. Nobody seems to know who she was or what she was doing in the neighborhood, and the murder shakes many in the village.

Ellen begins to investigate the dead woman's death and the more she delve into what happened, the more she realizes that idyllic little town holds dark secrets and that there is much that is not as it seems. Not least when it comes to her and her sister's death.

Liv is the second book in the series about the wayward TV4 journalist Ellen Tamm, and a sequel to Lycke which came out in 2015



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I read Lycke recently and it was a quick read book, however, I found the story not particularly complicated or outstanding. But it was entertaining to read, a perfect book when you want something not too deep, but at the same time not too easy to read. However, this book plot felt much more exciting and interesting. But then the rural idyll in Sweden and what might be hidden there sometimes more interesting to read about than what happens in the big cities. Who knows who what lies behind the beautiful house facades with manicured lawns...

For Ellen Tamm is the thought of returning home is not so attractive, but after the Lycke case has her life collapsed and now her mother decided that Ellen is going home since she does not seem to be able to take care of herself anymore. But Ellen is not even home before she finds out that a woman has been killed and that the murder was extremely violently. Ellen can't leave it alone, she starts to investigate the murder and discovers the small town of Stentuna has its dark secrets...

This book was story was much more interesting than Mikaela Bley's debut book Lycke. I found the story engaging and I liked that Ellen began to delve into what happened the day her twin sister died. I like books where the events take place in small towns where everyone knows everyone and I was surprised when I realized just what kind of secrets hidden under the surface. The end left me with a desire to learn more and I hope there will be a new book soon!

Thanks to Lind & Co for the review copy!

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Wishlist January: Biographical Fiction

This month's Wishlist is a genre that fascinates me very much. I love reading biographical fiction, to see real people come to life, whether it be well-known or more obscure beings. That this list contains five books about five women was not my purpose, however, I do love reading books about the woman behind the man. But, for some reason, biographical fiction tend to future mostly women for some reason...

In the spirit of American Wife and The Paris Wife, Melanie Benjamin (Alice I Have Been, The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb) reveals the story behind one of America’s most remarkable marriages—Charles and Anne Morrow Lindbergh—two aviators, thrill-seekers, heroes—and reveals both its dizzying highs and devastating lows with grace, insight, and stunning power.

It was the most famous marriage of the twentieth century—that of Charles Lindbergh, the handsome young aviator who changed the course of history and Anne Spencer Morrow, the shy, naive ambassador’s daughter. It was a picture-book marriage that prevailed through wild international acclaim and vilification, death-defying flights, and a kidnapping that stunned the world. Their every act and gesture was captured by an insatiable press. Melanie Benjamin deftly peers into the fairy tale that is the marriage of one of America’s most famous couples, and brings gorgeous insight into two compelling lives.

A heartrending, gripping novel about two sisters in Belle Époque Paris and the young woman forever immortalized as muse for Edgar Degas’ Little Dancer Aged Fourteen.

1878 Paris. Following their father’s sudden death, the van Goethem sisters find their lives upended. Without his wages, and with the small amount their laundress mother earns disappearing into the absinthe bottle, eviction from their lodgings seems imminent. With few options for work, Marie is dispatched to the Paris Opéra, where for a scant seventeen francs a week, she will be trained to enter the famous ballet. Her older sister, Antoinette, finds work as an extra in a stage adaptation of Émile Zola’s naturalist masterpiece L’Assommoir.

Marie throws herself into dance and is soon modeling in the studio of Edgar Degas, where her image will forever be immortalized as Little Dancer Aged Fourteen. There she meets a wealthy male patron of the ballet, but might the assistance he offers come with strings attached? Meanwhile Antoinette, derailed by her love for the dangerous Émile Abadie, must choose between honest labor and the more profitable avenues open to a young woman of the Parisian demimonde.

Set at a moment of profound artistic, cultural, and societal change, The Painted Girls is a tale of two remarkable sisters rendered uniquely vulnerable to the darker impulses of “civilized society.” In the end, each will come to realize that her salvation, if not survival, lies with the other.

Novelist Anne Girard brings to life the mesmerizing and untold story of Eva Gouel, the unforgettable woman who stole the heart of the greatest artist of our time

When Eva Gouel moves to Paris from the countryside, she is full of ambition and dreams of stardom. Though young and inexperienced, she manages to find work as a costumer at the famous Moulin Rouge, and it is here that she first catches the attention of Pablo Picasso, a rising star in the art world.

A brilliant but eccentric artist, Picasso sets his sights on Eva, and Eva can't help but be drawn into his web. But what starts as a torrid affair soon evolves into what will become the first great love of Picasso's life.

With sparkling insight and passion, Madame Picasso introduces us to a dazzling heroine, taking us from the salon of Gertrude Stein to the glamorous Moulin Rouge and inside the studio and heart of one of the most enigmatic and iconic artists of the twentieth century.

Paris in the 1860s: a magnificent time of expression, where brilliant young artists rebel against the stodginess of the past to freely explore new styles of creating—and bold new ways of living.

Passionate, beautiful, and utterly devoted to her art, Berthe Morisot is determined to be recognized as an important painter. But as a woman, she finds herself sometimes overlooked in favor of her male counterparts—Monet, Pissarro, Degas.

And there is one great artist among them who captivates young Berthe like none other: the celebrated genius Édouard Manet. A mesmerizing, breathtaking rogue—a shameless roué, undeterred and irresistible—his life is a wildly overgrown garden of scandal. He becomes Berthe's mentor, her teacher...her lover, despite his curiously devoted marriage to his frumpy, unappealing wife, Suzanne, and his many rumored dalliances with his own models. For a headstrong young woman from a respectable family, an affair with such an intoxicating scoundrel can only spell heartbreak and ruin.

But Berthe refuses to resign herself to the life of quiet submission that Society has dictated for her. Undiscouraged, she will create her own destiny...and confront life—and love—on her own terms.

The much-anticipated second novel by the author of Loving Frank, the beloved New York Times bestseller, this new work tells the incredible story of the passionate, turbulent relationship between Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson and his wild-tempered American wife, Fanny.

In her masterful new novel, Nancy Horan chronicles the unconventional love affair of Scottish literary giant Robert Louis Stevenson, author of classics including Treasure Island and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and American divorcee Fanny Van de Grift Osbourne. They meet in rural France in 1875, when Fanny, having run away from her philandering husband back in California, takes refuge there with her children. Stevenson too is escaping from his life, running from family pressure to become a lawyer. And so begins a passionate, turbulent love affair that will last two decades and span the world.




Heather @ The Maiden’s Court

Stephanie @ Layered Pages

#BookReview The Seventh Plague by James Rollins

The Seventh Plague by James Rollins
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

If the biblical plagues of Egypt truly happened--could they happen again--on a global scale?

Two years after vanishing into the Sudanese desert, the leader of a British archeological expedition, Professor Harold McCabe, comes stumbling out of the sands, frantic and delirious, but he dies before he can tell his story. The mystery deepens when an autopsy uncovers a bizarre corruption: someone had begun to mummify the professor's body--while he was still alive.

His strange remains are returned to London for further study, when alarming news arrives from Egypt. The medical team who had performed the man's autopsy has fallen ill with an unknown disease, one that is quickly spreading throughout Cairo. Fearing the worst, a colleague of the professor reaches out to a longtime friend: Painter Crowe, the director of Sigma Force. The call is urgent, for Professor McCabe had vanished into the desert while searching for proof of the ten plagues of Moses. As the pandemic grows, a disturbing question arises.

Are those plagues starting again?

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The Seventh Plague is the 12th book in the Sigma Force series and Painter Crowe, Grey Pierce, Seichan, and Kowalski, etc. are back trying to save the world from a deadly threat. This time it seems that they deadly plagues from the Bible could happen again.

This book did not have intense and wonderful thrilling feeling that the last book had. However, it was interesting to read, the idea that the plagues could have happened for real and the theory for it and I loved the historical part of the book that Rollins' included Mark Twain, Nikola Tesla in the story, although they did not have a large part in the whole story (unfortunately).

But, as much as I liked the idea, and enjoyed reading the book, is this not the strongest or the most interesting book I have read in this series and there are no weeping moments (like the ending of the last book in the series). The story was best towards the end when they were searching for a cure. But, Painter Crowe's mission on the Ellesmere Island that intertwined Pierce teams search for the cure was just not so interesting to read and the madman behind the whole thing was not a memorable villain.

The Seventh Plague, worked thanks to my love for biblical and historical mysteries. The story did not move me or enthralled me in the way I had hoped it would do. I did like the ending very much when Pierce team found something extraordinary in the jungle in Africa. That's the part I liked the most. I liked the book, but I did not love it. It's still well written and I'm really intrigued by the scientific part of the story, the theory about what could have set off the plagues all those years ago. 

Friday, 27 January 2017

Burned and Broken by Mark Hardie Blog Tour

Burned and Broken by Mark Hardie
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

‘[An] immensely impressive debut’ The Times

BURNED
AND BROKEN

MARK HARDIE



Peter James meets James Oswald in this gripping, gritty British crime debut

The charred body of an enigmatic policeman – currently the subject of an internal investigation – is found in the burnt-out shell of his car on the Southend sea front.

Meanwhile, a vulnerable young woman, fresh out of the care system, is trying to discover the truth behind the sudden death of her best friend.

As DS Frank Pearson and DC Catherine Russell from the Essex Police Major Investigation Team are brought in to solve the mystery of their colleague's death, dark, dangerous secrets begin to surface. Can they solve both cases, before it's too late?


Mark Hardie's stylish and gripping debut introduces a brilliant new detective duo to the world of crime fiction, weaving together two suspenseful stories that end in a breath-taking finale.



'An accomplished debut' The Sunday Times


REVIEW:

As a crime fan did this book look very promising. A policeman that is found in a burnt-out car and a young woman that's trying to solve the death of a friend of hers. Intriguing. There are several POV, we have for instance Donna, the young girl that's trying to find someone to help her solve her friend Alicia's death. We also get to follow DS Frank Pearson and DC Catherine "Cat" Russell, as they try to solve the murdered policeman's death.

The book starts off first with a prologue where a man is awakening in a car before it goes up in flame and then it's a time jump and we get to follow Frank Pearson arriving at the burnt-out car and is notified that it's Sean Carragher's car and that's probably him in the car. Then, we go back in time, four days earlier and get to follow the main characters as the story progress towards the unavoidable death in the car and what happens after that.

I found the book both interesting, but also a bit hard to take in. My main problem was that neither Frank Pearson nor Cat Russell made a big impression on me. Donna, however, was the one that I felt most for at the same time was I curious about her mental state. She did seem to be a bit troubled and could she have anything to do with Sean Carragher's death? In the beginning was it hard to figure out where all the different storylines had to do with each other. Why is Sean Carragher under investigations? Does Cat know more than she lets on? Was Alicia murdered? And, what's up with Frank Pearson brother-in-law? And, how is it all connected? Is it all connected?

Burned and Broken was an interesting book. I really liked that I did not see the ending coming. I would have liked to have connected more with the Frank and Cat, but I felt that they just didn't resonate with me, but thankfully the story made up for that.

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy for an honest review! 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mark Hardie was born in 1960 in Bow, East London. He began writing fulltime after completely losing his eyesight in 2002. He has completed a creative writing course and an advanced creative writing course at the Open University, both with distinction.

Mark lives with his wife Debbie in Southend-on-Sea.







Thursday, 26 January 2017

Cover Crush: Impossible Views of the World by Lucy Ives


For new visitors do I want to explain that Cover Crush is something that my friend Erin over at Flashlight Commentary came up with and I adopted the idea together with some other friends. And, now we try to put up a Cover Crush every week. You can check below my pick of the week for their choices this week!

Penguin Press (Penguin Publishing Group)
FRONTLIST | On Sale Date: August 1, 2017
ISBN 9780735221536, 0735221537
Hardcover | 304 pages | 
Fiction / Literary

A witty, urbane, and sometimes shocking debut novel, set in a hallowed New York museum, in which a co-worker’s disappearance and a mysterious map change a life forever

Stella Krakus, a curator at Manhattan’s renowned Central Museum of Art, is having the roughest week in approximately ever. Her soon-to-be ex-husband (the perfectly awful Whit Ghiscolmbe) is stalking her, a workplace romance with “a fascinating, hyper-rational narcissist” is in freefall, and a beloved colleague, Paul, has gone missing. Strange things are afoot: CeMArt’s current exhibit is sponsored by a Belgian multinational that wants to take over the world’s water supply, she unwittingly stars in a viral video that’s making the rounds, and her mother—the imperious, impossibly glamorous Caro—wants to have lunch. It’s almost more than she can overanalyze.

But the appearance of a strange map, depicting a mysterious 19th-century utopian settlement, sends Stella—a dogged expert in American graphics and fluidomanie (don’t ask)—on an all-consuming research mission. As she teases out the links between a haunting poem, several unusual novels, a counterfeiting scheme, and one of the museum’s colorful early benefactors, she discovers the unbearable secret that Paul’s been keeping, and charts a course out of the chaos of her own life. Pulsing with neurotic humor and dagger-sharp prose, Impossible Views of the World is a dazzling debut novel about how to make it through your early thirties with your mind and heart intact.


Some thoughts about the cover:

I'm utterly captivated by this cover, the colors and the motives (The museum, the city, the trees and the clouds, it's fantastic)  on the cover just appeal to me in so many ways and I have to admit that I really, really desperately want to read this book.

Check out what my friends have picked for Cover Crush's this week:

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Murder at Midnight by John Ukah Blog Tour

Title: Murder at Midnight
Author: John Ukah
Genre: Cozy Mystery

Alex Simpson, an ex-police officer, decides after a bout of typhoid fever to take a break in a serene and therapeutic environment. The last thing he expects is to be called upon to solve a murder at the Kinging Guest Lodge. But that is what happens, when the delectable and vivacious Maria Marshall is found dead in her bedroom at midnight.

The gallery of characters living at the guesthouse and thrown into the mix, do not make his task of solving this chilling and brutal murder any easier …


Book Excerpt

“Have you set the rat poison?” I asked Ayuba, when he was filling my glass with water. And as if on cue, the Power Holding Company of Nigeria struck. We were all enveloped in darkness. 

“Do sit still, everyone,” Ayuba cautioned. “I will get the generator working now.”

I heard him open the main door and go out. Someone was still walking around the dining area, in the dark. There was the harsh scraping sound of a chair moving across the terrazzo floor surface and the person sat down finally.

Ayuba and the generator had a good understanding. They had known each other for years. It purred and came to life. Soon enough, it was roaring like a wounded lion and the lights came back on. I looked around at everyone, they were all at their tables as calm as you please. I wondered which one of them had been moving about in the dark and why.

“I was asking you about the rat poison, Ayuba,” I said when he came back.

“It's there on …” began Ayuba pointing to a shelf. But now his mouth was agape in surprise and he couldn’t seem to continue. His hand hung in space, still pointing at the shelf, as if held by a spell.

“What is it?” I asked him.

“The bottle of rat poison was on that shelf just before the lights went out, but it is no longer there now,” he explained, standing up to see better.

“Maybe someone accidentally knocked it over, when it was dark,” I suggested. We left the dining area and searched around the shelf and the bar area, but it was a waste of time.

“You’re sure it was here?” I asked.

“Yes, I saw it just before the lights went out.”

That was when Wahimda screamed.

“Ah! My tummy!” she shrieked, clutching at her stomach.

“What is it?” I asked going over to her. She was already on the floor.

She kept screaming, “My tummy! My tummy!”

Tonye almost jumped out of his skin. His eyes grew as wide as saucers. I was also startled by the piercing scream.

“Is she in labour?” Tonye asked no one in particular. His head seemed larger than usual.

“Maybe she had an abortion?” he suggested.

“Oh, shut up, Tonye!” I snapped. Then, I went on my knees and tried to calm Wahimda. What was the matter with her?

“The hot chocolate! The hot chocolate!” said Wahimda. “Ah! The hot chocolate!” There were beads of perspiration and signs of agony on her face.

“The hot chocolate?” repeated Amina incredulously. “How do you mean?”

But Wahimda groaned louder.

“She had better answer right now,” said Tonye, impatiently.

“Wahimda,” I called, holding up her head and wiping off some of the perspiration with my handkerchief. “What is the matter?”

“The hot chocolate. It tasted funny like insecticide,” she said weakly, her eyes became glazed and she seemed to have difficulty keeping them open. “It tasted funny …” her voice trailed off as if she hadn’t the strength to continue.

“Oh, I see now,” said Tonye nodding his head sagely, as if everything was now crystal clear. He grinned at everyone with a moronic smile on his face. He reminded me of a cow having a good time in a grass field.

“But was it not normal chocolate?” asked Willie.

“It was,” Amina answered, looking bewildered.

“The rat poison!” said Ayuba in a sudden fit of inspiration.

“What happened to rat cousin?” asked Tonye with a blank expression on his face.

“The rat poison must have somehow found its way into the chocolate,’ explained a distraught Ayuba.

“It is not possible!” said Amina, with an emphatic shake of her head. “The bottle was never near where I made the hot chocolate. It was on that shelf until the lights went off.”

“Let’s get this young lady to the hospital,” said John.

We called for help from the policemen. They assisted in getting Wahimda into one of their police vans.

“Please, hurry!” Amina called out, as they went to the nearest hospital.

I wondered what had happened. Had Amina accidentally or deliberately put rat poison in Wahimda’s hot chocolate? But why would she want to hurt her husband’s cousin? Had someone else done so under the cover of darkness? Who moved when the lights went off? Had the young lady deliberately poisoned herself? But she was not the suicidal type! Or was she?

The other guests huddled and were asking themselves questions along similar lines. But where was the bottle of rat poison now? Empty or not, where was it?
I called out to Tonye, “Help me look around for the bottle of rat poison. Don’t touch it if you see it. Just show it to me.”

We began searching for it. Unfortunately, Tonye was hell-bent on following me around and searching in the very places where I put my hands to search. At a point, we were both under the same table. I had no idea he would try to get under the same table, as I was. We ended up knocking our heads together. Stars exploded before my eyes, as soon as my head struck his rocky head. I was pissed, to say the least. The others asked what we were looking for, when they saw me rubbing my head in pain. I stared at Tonye with deadly intent; he had the nerve to watch me in surprise, as if wondering what the matter was with me! I told them what we were looking for, then tried to get up, forgetting that I was still under the table. This time, when my head struck the table, I saw stars, comets and asteroids colliding and exploding.

“Murder At Midnight” is available in all Amazon markets on Kindle. It is also available as an EPUB and iBook on Smashwords, Overdrive.com, Okadabooks, Apple, Kobo and all major online stores.


Author Bio

John Ukah is a seasoned banker and Associate of the Institute of Capital Market Registrars (ACMR). He is a graduate of Business Administration from the University of Benin, where he was listed as University Scholar. He also holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration (MBA).

Links

Purchase “Murder at Midnight” on Amazon: United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, Japan, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Australia, and India.

It is also available on Smashwords, Kobo, Apple, Barnes & Noble (Nook), Okadabooks, and major online stores.

Okadabooks is mainly for buyers in Africa.






Beyond Derrynane by Kevin O' Connell Blog Tour

Beyond Derrynane by Kevin O'Connell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

02_beyond-derrynane

Beyond Derrynane by Kevin O' Connell

Publication Date: July 7, 2016
Gortcullinane Press
eBook & Paperback; 348 Pages
Series: The Derrynane Saga, Volume 1
Genre: Historical Fiction
Add to GR Button

Wed in an arranged marriage to a man nearly fifty years her senior, sixteen-year-old Eileen O’Connell goes from being one of five unmarried sisters to become the mistress of Ballyhar, the great estate of John O’Connor, one of the wealthiest and most influential men in Ireland.

When O’Connor dies suddenly seven months into their marriage, Eileen must decide whether she will fulfill her brother’s strategic goals for her family by marrying her late husband’s son.

Headstrong and outspoken, Eileen frustrates her brother’s wishes, as, through the auspices of her uncle, General Moritz O’Connell of the Imperial Austrian Army, she, along with her ebullient elder sister, Abigail, spend the ensuing richly-dramatic and eventful years at the court of the Empress Maria Theresa in Vienna.The sisters learn to navigate the complex and frequently contradictory ways of the court–making a place for themselves in a world far different from remote Derrynane. Together with the general, they experience a complex life at the pinnacle of the Hapsburg Empire.

Beyond Derrynane – and the three books to follow in The Derrynane Saga – will present a sweeping chronicle, set against the larger drama of Europe in the early stages of significant change, dramatising the roles, which have never before been treated in fiction, played by a small number of expatriate Irish Catholics of the fallen “Gaelic Aristocracy” (of which the O’Connells were counted as being amongst its few basically still-intact families) at the courts of Catholic Europe, as well as relating their complex, at times dangerous, lives at home in Protestant Ascendancy-ruled Ireland.

In addition to Eileen’s, the books trace the largely-fictional lives of several other O’Connells of Derrynane, it is the tantalisingly few facts that are historically documented about them which provide the basic threads around which the tale itself is woven, into which strategic additions of numerous historical and fictional personalities and events intertwine seamlessly.

Review:

I was instantly intrigued by this story when I read the book's blurb. As a fan of historical fiction and family sagas did The Derrynane Saga sound like a book for me. The book starts with Eileen O'Connell returning home after hardly been away a year married to a man that her brother decided she would marry. Here, she tells her story to her older sister Abigale. And, the beginning is, I think the strongest part of the book. I was instantly taken with Eileen, she is not a weak little flower being married off, instead is she a tough, pragmatic and resourceful girl. And, after a disastrous wedding night is she also a girl hellbent on revenge. But, here the book surprises me quite a lot and I found myself quite enjoying the change in the story, unfortunately, I also knew that this would not last.

The first book in The Derrynane Saga does feel like an introduction to the O'Connell family. It's an interesting period and I found the change from Ireland to the court of Empress Maria Theresa in Vienna interesting, but I also felt that the passing was a bit slow and to be honest I struggled with the book now and then. But, at the same time, I felt that this book is very well researched and put together. Although I was a bit torn about Eileen and Abigale time in Vienna. I wanted to enjoy it, but I felt that not much happened, not enough drama. Everything was cheerful and nice and it got a bit too much in the end. The book started off strong, but the last half lacked the intensity. At the same time, was I intrigued by the situation in Europe, and Empress Maria Theresa and her children and what the future will bring. For instance, at first, I didn't know who Archduchess Maria Antonia was, but a comment in the book made me check up Maria Theresa's children and that made me realize that Maria Antoni would one day be known as Marie Antoinette. She is the future queen of France and reading about her as a child was tinged with sadness, knowing her fate.

The Derrynane Saga did perhaps not spellbind me, but it's a well written and definitely well-researched book and perfect for history buffs. 

I want to thank Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours and the author for providing me with a free copy for an honest review!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound

About the Author

03_kevin-oconnell
Kevin O’Connell is a native of New York City and a descendant of a young officer of what had—from 1690 to 1792—been the Irish Brigade of the French army, believed to have arrived in French Canada following the execution of Queen Marie Antoinette in October of 1793. At least one grandson subsequently returned to Ireland and Mr. O’Connell’s own grandparents came to New York in the early twentieth century. He holds both Irish and American citizenship.

He is a graduate of Providence College and Georgetown University Law Centre.

For more than four decades, O’Connell has practiced international business transactional law, primarily involving direct-investment matters, throughout Asia (principally China), Europe, and the Middle East.

Mr. O’Connell has been a serious student of selected (especially the Eighteenth Century) periods of the history of Ireland for virtually all of his life; one significant aspect of this has been a continuing scholarly as well as personal interest in the extended O’Connell family at Derrynane, many even distant and long-ago members of which, especially the characters about whom he writes, he has “known” intimately since childhood.

The father of five children and grandfather of ten, he and his wife, Laurette, live with their golden retriever, Katie, near Annapolis, Maryland.

Blog Tour Schedule
Monday, January 16
Kick Off at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, January 17
Review at Broken Teepee

Wednesday, January 18

Review at Luxury Reading
Review at A Chick Who Reads

Thursday, January 19
Review at Books, Dreams, Life

Friday, January 20
Review at The Book Junkie Reads

Sunday, January 22
Review at Carole’s Ramblings

Monday, January 23
Review at Jorie Loves a Story

Tuesday, January 24
Review at Kinx’s Book Nook

Wednesday, January 25
Review at A Bookaholic Swede
Excerpt at A Literary Vacation

Friday, January 27

Review at CelticLady’s Reviews
Interview at Dianne Ascroft’s Blog

Monday, January 30
Review at Beth’s Book Nook Blog

Tuesday, January 31
Review at Book Nerd

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Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Interview with B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree Colin Weldon

I’d like to welcome B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree Colin Weldon to A Bookaholic Swede to talk with me about his story, The Agathon. Colin Weldon lives in Dublin, Ireland. The Agathon is his debut novel. He studied Journalism at Griffith college and runs a small family antique store off Grafton Street in Dublin's city centre. He is an avid reader and lover of all things sci-fi. Follow on twitter @colinweldon www.colinweldon.com

Hi Colin, it's nice to be chatting with you. Can you tell me how did you discover indieBRAG?

By a google search.

Could you please tell me what The Agathon is about?

The Agathon is about a small group of humans who try and discover the origin of an alien signal that has destroyed Earth. The Agathon is actually the name of the ship, Earth's first faster than light spaceship. The crew begin to find clues to the origin of the signal on a distant planet in the form of an ancient stone monolith. While responding to an apparent signal denoting intelligent life, the Agathon is attacked and crash lands on a planet which is not what it appears to be.

Can you tell more about Carrie Barrington? I found it intriguing that she is the first human child born on Mars.

Carrie Barrington is the lead protagonist. She is mid twenties, a scientist under the apprenticeship of Doctor Tyrone Tyrell. She is also mutating. She is experiencing telekinetic and telepathic abilities which are growing in intensity. Carrie becomes the last hope for the humans on board The Agathon as her powers become the only thing that can defend the ship against the attack of the machine planet. Carrie finds herself inextricably tied to Doctor Tyrel, as his body is taken over by an alien liquid on Mars that wants to communicate with Carrie. Carrie has to deal with her isolation from the crew and the pain of reliving her mother's death in her dreams every night.

It seems that the human race is near instinct. What happened?

An alien signal, which has been transmitted to Earth, blows up the planet.

Can you tell me more about Carrie’s father and mother

Carrie's father is the leader of the colony on Mars and eventual Captain of The Agathon. He's a hard ass but fair. Excellent leader and well respected. Carrie's mother was a scientist. She was killed by an alien substance on Mars called, The Black, when Carrie was very young.

Doctor Tyrone Tyrell is Carrie’s mentor, and he sounds like a very intriguing character. Anything you can tell me about him?

Doctor Tyrell is the head of the science division on Mars. He hates humanity and reluctantly agrees to take Carrie on as his apprentice. He knows there is something different about her and half suspects about her abilities. He is eventually taken over by an alien entity and then becomes a crucial link between Carrie and her past.

The whole story sounds very interesting. Is this a stand-alone or the first book in a series?

This is the first of three books, the second, I published a few months back called The Agathon, Reign of Arturo

Any authors that have influenced you in your writing?

Massive Michael Crighton fan, Steven King, Roald Dahl, Isaac Asimov, Peter F. Hamilton... the list goes on and on... the greats of sci-fi and adventure really.

What are you writing on now?

I have just finished the first in a series called Hunting Nora Stone, which I am currently pitching to publishers, and of course the third and last instalment of The Agathon. I am currently doing a masters degree in ScreenWriting in IADT in Dublin, learning about writing movie scripts which is fun.

I’m a big fan of science fiction movies, but I feel that I don’t often read many science fiction books. Do you have any favorites?

Oh god some of them are amazing!.... Read all the Terry Pratchett books, they're a must. The Martian by Andy Weir is a great read.

What are you reading right now?

James A Corey the Expanse series, loving it.

How did you come up with the title for your book?

The Agathon is name of the ship they travel in. It's also the name of a tragic Athenian poet who's works have been lost.

Who designed your book cover?

My cover was designed by 99 Designs. A company that has an open call for designers around the world to submit ideas depending on the budget you put forward.

A Message from indieBRAG:

We are delighted that Magdalena has chosen to interview Colin Weldon who is the author of, The Agathon, our medallion honoree at indieBRAG. To be awarded a B.R.A.G. Medallion ®, a book must receive unanimous approval by a group of our readers. It is a daunting hurdle and it serves to reaffirm that a book such as, The Agathon, merits the investment of a reader’s time and money.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

#BookReview City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong

City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Casey Duncan is a homicide detective with a secret: when she was in college, she killed a man. She was never caught, but he was the grandson of a mobster and she knows that someday this crime will catch up to her. Casey's best friend, Diana, is on the run from a violent, abusive ex-husband. When Diana's husband finds her, and Casey herself is attacked shortly after, Casey knows it's time for the two of them to disappear again.

Diana has heard of a town made for people like her, a town that takes in people on the run who want to shed their old lives. You must apply to live in Rockton and if you're accepted, it means walking away entirely from your old life, and living off the grid in the wilds of Canada: no cell phones, no Internet, no mail, no computers, very little electricity, and no way of getting in or out without the town council's approval. As a murderer, Casey isn't a good candidate, but she has something they want: She's a homicide detective, and Rockton has just had its first real murder. She and Diana are in. However, soon after arriving, Casey realizes that the identity of a murderer isn't the only secret Rockton is hiding—in fact, she starts to wonder if she and Diana might be in even more danger in Rockton than they were in their old lives.


********

I was interested in reading the book from the first time I saw it. A town for people that needs to get away. A secret town in the middle of nowhere. It sounded bloody fantastic. But, sometimes my expectations are too high, and when it came to this book did I expect a more mysterious and darker story.

Now, I don't say that the City of the Lost is a bad book, it started off interestingly with Casey and her friend Diana needing to get away, especially Diana after she once again had problems with her ex-boyfriend who beat her badly. Casey's problem is a bit more complicated, she killed a man when she was in college and have since then been waiting for the day the past would catch up with her. And, now it seems that it has happened. For them is Rockton a perfect solution, although Casey because of her past has a hard time getting approved for going to the town, in the end, is she allowed, but there are some conditions for her and one of the reasons they agree to accept her is because they need a homicide detective to solve a murder.

It's in Rockton that I felt the story started to drag now and then, it just went on and on, sometimes it felt that the investigation didn't go anywhere. I was also a bit disappointed with the town, it felt that it was just really bad people there and if you were a woman then you had to watch out (I think I had a town like the one in Pines (Wayward Pines by Blake Crouch in mind, normal but mysterious). There were some promising things with the story, the rumors about cannibals were interesting, it just never becomes much more than a rumor. Then, the obvious and expected romance occurred (I have read reviews of the books so I was prepared), and it took more time away from the investigations, but at the same time was it an important part of the story that I can't discuss since it would spoiler the book.

The ending, well it was good, perhaps not fantastically good, but Casey did solve the murder and all. She also discovered some secrets that someone close to her had kept and I loved the confrontation between Casey and this person.

So, City of the Lost did not turn out to be this fantastic book I had hoped for. It was more of a bumpy ride with both ups and downs. Would I read the next book? Yes, I would! I did enjoy more of the book than I disliked. I just hope the next book will have a less bumpy ride.

Friday, 20 January 2017

A Ghostly Reunion by Tonya Kappes Blog Tour

A Ghostly Reunion

by Tonya Kappes

on Tour January 16 - February 17, 2017

Synopsis:

A Ghostly Reunion by Tonya Kappes

A Ghostly Reunion

Proprietor of the Eternal Slumber Funeral Home, Emma Lee can see, hear, and talk to ghosts of murdered folks. And when her high school nemesis is found dead, Jade Lee Peel is the same old mean girl—trying to come between Emma Lee and her hot boyfriend, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, all over again.
There’s only one way for Emma Lee to be free of the trash-talking ghost—solve the murder so the former prom queen can cross over.
But the last thing Jade Lee wants is to leave the town where she had her glory days. And the more Emma Lee investigates on her own, the more complicated Miss Popularity turns out to be. Now Emma Lee will have to work extra closely with her hunky lawman to get to the twisty truth.

Book Details:

Genre: Cozy Mystery, Paranormal
Published by: HarperCollins / Witness
Publication Date: December 27th 2016
Number of Pages: 352
ISBN: 006246695X (ISBN13: 9780062466952)
Series: Ghostly Southern Mysteries #5
Purchase Links: Amazon  | Barnes & Noble  | Goodreads 

Read an excerpt:

Sexy isn’t a firm fanny in a thong, ladies.”
Hettie Bell didn’t seem so sexy in her hot pink leggings and matching top as she gasped for breath in her downward dog position in the middle of Sleepy Hollow, Kentucky. Her butt stuck straight up in the air, right there on display for everyone to see. Her black, chin-length bob was falling out of the small ponytail on both sides and her bangs hung down in her eyes.
“Sexy is confidence and self-acceptance. It’s exactly what yoga provides.”
Hettie Bell curled up on her tiptoes with her palms planted on one of the mats she provided for us. The rickety old floor of the gazebo, in the middle of the town square, groaned as we all tried to mimic her pose. “Yes!” Beulah Paige Bellefry hollered out like we were in the first pew of the Sleepy Hollow Baptist Church getting a good Bible beating from Pastor Brown himself.
“Amen to a good pose!”
Beulah continued to adjust her feet and hands each time she started to slip. If she wasn’t a bit overweight, I’d say it was her eighties silk sweat suit that was slicker than cat’s guts giving her problems. Or it could’ve been those pearls around her wrist, neck and ears weighing her down. Beulah never took off those pearls. She said pearls were a staple for a Southern gal.
“You said it, sister,” Mary Anna Hardy gasped. She teetered side to side, nearly knocking into Granny. Her sweat left streaks down her makeup. Who on earth got up this early and put makeup on to do yoga? Mary Anna Hardy, that’s who.
“God help us!”
“That’s it.”
I pushed back off my heels and crossed my legs, staring at all the Auxiliary women’s derrieres at my eye level.
“I’m here to do some relaxing, not Sunday school.”
Sleepy Hollow was smack-dab in the middle of the Bible Belt and if God wasn’t thrown in our conversations, then we weren’t breathing. But the last thing I wanted to think about was my butt stuck up to the high heavens and everyone up in the Great Beyond looking down upon me.

Author Bio:

Tonya KappesTonya Kappes has written more than fifteen novels and four novellas, all of which have graced numerous bestseller lists including USA Today. Best known for stories charged with emotion and humor and filled with flawed characters, her novels have garnered reader praise and glowing critical reviews. She lives with her husband, two very spoiled schnauzers, and one ex-stray cat in northern Kentucky. Now that her boys are teenagers, Tonya writes full-time but can be found at all of her guys’ high school games with a pencil and paper in hand.

Catch Up with Tonya Kappes on her Website , Twitter , & Facebook 


Tour Participants:


Giveaway:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Tonya Kappes and Witness Impulse. There will be 1 US winner of one PRINTED set of The Ghostly Southern Mysteries #1-5 by Tonya Kappes. The giveaway begins on January 15th and runs through February 18th, 2017.
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