Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Madam Tulip and the Bones of Chance by David Ahern


A surprise role in a movie takes actress Derry O’Donnell to a romantic castle in the Scottish Highlands. But romance soon turns to fear and suspicion. Someone means to kill, and Derry, moonlighting as celebrity fortune-teller Madam Tulip, is snared in a net of greed, conspiracy and betrayal.

A millionaire banker, a film producer with a mysterious past, a gun-loving wife, a PA with her eyes on Hollywood, a handsome and charming estate manager—each has a secret to share and a request for Madam Tulip. 

As Derry and her friend Bruce race to prevent a murder, she learns to her dismay that the one future Tulip can’t predict is her own.

Madame Tulip and the Bones of Chance is the third Madam Tulip adventure.

My Thoughts

Once again, David Ahern has done it.  Another well-written, funny book!  This is the third Madam Tulip book and possibly the best!  They just keep getting better!

I am a lover of cozy mysteries, especially if they make me laugh too!  This one does just that. It could actually be read as a stand alone but I think you get more out of it if you read the three books in order.

If you enjoy cozy mysteries then you'll like this one, I'm sure of it!  I'm so glad that I was given this book to read!

*Note: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Death of a Movie Star by Timothy Patrick


StarBash is the hottest thing on TV. Featuring desperate actors facing off in absurd competitions to win a movie deal, the reality show is famous for making fools of its fame-starved participants.

So it seems odd that respected Hollywood A-lister Cassandra "Casmo" Moreaux would become a contestant. But her motivation is simple: revenge against the program’s producer, Lenora Danmore, the dastardly old bag who blacklisted Casmo’s mother during the McCarthy era. 

Casmo plans to use StarBash to confront and embarrass Lenora in front of the entire country—but what Casmo doesn’t know could kill her.

Vindictive and wicked, Lenora is determined to set a trap for the upstart movie star. But when Casmo unexpectedly falls in love with the show’s wry host—who also happens to be Lenora’s illegitimate son—the murder plot bubbles over with unforeseen complications.

Featuring sarcastic celebrities, murderous androids, and off-the-wall humor from beginning to end, Death of a Movie Star is a gut-busting satire that masterfully tears Hollywood culture apart at the seams. It is part suspense, part romance, and all zany fun!

My Thoughts

I am actually having a little trouble reviewing this book.  I liked so many things about it and yet there were enough things that I didn't like that it has me questioning how I really feel.  Let's see how I feel by the end of this post.

I think that a lot of how a person would feel about this book depends on their appreciation for reality television.  If you're not a fan of reality tv then you probably won't love this book.  I guess I'm kind f in the middle.  I like some reality tv and then there's some that I really, really don't like.

A lot of the characters were a bit unbelievable to me.  Maybe a little too vindictive and mean.  It made an interesting story but they just weren't likable.

On a good note, I think this book would make a great movie!! It could be a dark comedy or something!  I think it would do great!

*Note: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Drift Stumble Fall by M. Jonathan Lee


Richard feels trapped in his hectic life of commitment and responsibility. From the daily mayhem of having young children, an exhausted wife and pushy in-laws who frequently outstay their welcome, Richard’s existence fills him with panic and resentment. The only place he can escape the dark cloud descending upon him is the bathroom, where he hides for hours on end, door locked, wondering how on earth he can escape. 

Often staring out of his window, Richard enviously observes the tranquil life of Bill, his neighbour living in the bungalow across the road. From the outside, Bills world appears filled with comfort and peace. Yet underneath the apparent domestic bliss of both lives are lies, secrets, imperfections, sadness and suffering far greater than either could have imagined. Beneath the surface, a family tragedy has left Bill frozen in time and unable to move on. As he waits for a daughter who may never return, Bill watches Richards bustling family life and yearns for the joy it brings. As the two men watch each other from afar, it soon becomes apparent that other people’s lives are not always what they seem. 

Drift Stumble Fall is author M. Jonathan Lee’s fifth novel, and is his most recent release. 

Other novels by M. Jonathan Lee include the first and second parts of the ‘The’ trilogy ‘The Page’ and ‘The Radio’, dark family mystery ‘Broken Branches’ and ‘A Tiny Feeling of Fear’. 

The Radio was nationally shortlisted for the Novel Prize in 2012. 

Jonathan’s writing has always been inspired by a number of novels, including Alex Garland's The Beach, and his writing is comparable to Mark Haddon, Nick Hornby and Joseph Connolly. 

Jonathan’s novels are published with the Northern Publishing House, Hideaway Fall. All novels published through Hideaway Fall are creative fiction that grab the attention of the reader and have unexpected twists in the plot. They stray away from sci’fi, romance novels and non-fiction, because as they state, they’re ‘not our bag’. 

Jonathan is active in the author community, and has spoken on multiple occasions in schools, colleges, prisons and universities about creative writing and storytelling and appeared at various literary festivals including Sheffield’s Off the Shelf and Doncaster’s Turn the Page festival. 

He is also a tireless campaigner for mental health awareness, which has led him to write regularly for the Huffington Post, the Big Issue and spoken at length on numerous occasions about his own personal struggle on the BBC and Radio Talk Europe. 

“Honest, unpredictable and deeply moving.” Milly Johnson Sunday Times Bestseller 

My Thoughts

This is such a powerful book!  I had literally just been talking to a few people about how you never know what people are dealing with.  Things may look like a person is leading the perfect life on the outside but you have no idea what they are dealing with internally.

Life is hard.  Not just for some, but for all.  Everyone goes through things.  The grass may seem greener somewhere else, but chances are there are problems there too!  This book is a wonderful example of this fact.  Two men, looking at each other, envious of what they think the other's life holds.  How often do we all do that?

Thank you, Hideaway Fall, for sending this book to me!

*Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The Bookery

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Looking For Dei by David A Willson


Fifteen-year-old Nara Dall has never liked secrets. Yet it seems that her life has been filled with them, from the ugly scar on her back to the strange powers she possesses. Her mysterious father refuses to say anything about her origins, and soon, she and her best friend must attend the announcement ceremony, in which youths are tested for a magical gift.

A gifted youth has not been announced in the poor village of Dimmitt for decades. When Nara uncovers the reason, she uses her own powers to make things right. The decision sets her on a path of danger, discovery, and a search for the divine. In the process, she learns the truth about herself and uncovers the biggest secret of all: the power of broken people.

My Thoughts

Looking For Dei was quite an enjoyable book!  I really liked the magic and the world building.  Lately, it seems, most YA fantasy books are becoming more and more alike.  This one didn't have that issue.

This story was unlike any other I have read.  It is refreshing to read a book that is fresh and new.  There was a lot of information (character development, world building, etc.) so the book was info dumpy at times.  However, that is typical of most first books in a series.

Overall, this was a great book and I recommend it to YA fantasy lovers everywhere!

*Note: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

NADI by Loren Walker


Two weeks after the Kings Canyon massacre, the crew of the Arazura is splintering apart. Haunted by what she witnessed, Sydel makes a fraught connection with a mysterious newcomer, CaLarca, who teaches the young woman about her abilities, but harbors dangerous secrets about both their pasts. Brothers Renzo and Cohen must deal with the aftermath of their absentee father’s sudden death, while their sister, Phaira, struggles with her drug addiction, grief, and the presence of a former advisory while traveling as a bodyguard.

As pressure mounts to make an arrest in the Kings Canyon case, and as a separate, unidentified danger draws closer, the foursome must work through their deep-rooted issues, learn to trust each other, and come together in the wake of new enemies.

My Thoughts

I read EKO a while back and enjoyed it a lot so when I received the request to review this one I was pretty pleased.  It had been a while since I read EKO so I wanted to read it again before I started NADI.  I actually enjoyed it more the second time around and it made me more excited to start the next one.

NADI is a wonderful sequel!  I may like it more than EKO.  The plot was very interesting and the way that the characters have grown makes it even better.  I am happy to have found another author that I enjoy!

Thank you, Loren Walker, for sending this book to me!  I'm looking forward to reading more and more from you!

*Note: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Loving Grace by April Smith


Grace Summer lands herself in a melon load of trouble when she becomes torn between the boy of her dreams and the boy almost next door. As the newly-crowned Watermelon Queen, she is thrust into the spotlight, meets the dreamy Warren Hartley, and continues trying to get over an accident that rocked her world. Mix in working with Beau Baron who Grace happens to fight with just about as much as breathing and the metaphorical sparks fly.
Like most things in life, Grace must learn to take the good with the bad. While the good is the handsome and fun Warren Hartley, the bad is Beau Baron—or at least being around his annoying and rude self way more than she would like. For Beau, Grace is nothing more than aggravating and an irritating reminder from the night of the accident. Tensions soar as Grace and Beau fight to love themselves and maybe, just maybe, each other.

My Thoughts

This book was adorable!  I loved it!  Was it predictable at times? Yes.  Did I love the "Love Triangle? Not really.  Was the book still adorable?  Yes!!!

The main character, Grace Summer, was a breath of fresh air.  I totally knew who she would eventually end up with but I loved the journey getting there.  The whole Watermelon concept had me craving watermelons the whole time I read this book.  I've been snacking on them most days since reading this gem.

I don't know if I was just extremely ready to read this type of book or if it was really just that good but I certainly did enjoy it!  I'm so glad it was sent my way!

*Note: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.