Monday, July 13, 2020

“The Gender Secret” by Bella Forrest

This was the sequel to “The Gender Game”

Violet has been set up to be used as a pawn by both the Matrian and the Patrian societies. She is being blamed for the murder of the Matrian Queen as well as the attack on the Patrian King. As such, it seems that both societies are now after her and the egg that she had successfully retrieved. Why this egg is so important even she doesn’t know, but it seems that both sides desperately want it and are more than willing to kill her to acquire it.

On top of that, Viggo is left to believe that she has betrayed and tried to kill him as well. So when the Patrian King makes him an offer to go find and retrieve her, is it any surprise that he would agree to join the hunt for the girl he had been falling for?

I really enjoyed reading this book and had a very difficult time putting it down to sleep at night. I have been totally hooked on this series and can’t wait to see where it goes after the end of this book and what we learned within it. (There is definitely much more going on here than first appears, but I won’t spoil that surprise for you.)

Monday, July 6, 2020

"Shamed Mail Order Bride and Her
Ex Outlaw" by Florence Linnington

Odette was used to living in luxury & getting everything she wanted. But suddenly she was told by her parents that she would wed Mr. Hawthorne, a boorish self-made man whose only apparent redeeming factor was that he was rich. It was a marriage that did not appeal to Odette’s image of how her life was meant to unfold, but it seemed that she was to have no say in the matter.

Odette cannot bring herself to accept this mannerless man as her fiance despite her parents’ wishes, and runs off to the town of Evergreen to marry a farmer, believing that anything had to be better than being forced to wed Mr. Hawthorne. But is she truly prepared for the harsh reality of what life in a small Wyoming town is really like?

Once again Ms. Linnington has written an enjoyable tale about two people starting out as strangers who appear completely unsuited for each other can come together, embracing those same differences to slowly discover a true and honest love.

Even though I know when starting to read a new one of her stories that things will end happily , I enjoy seeing how the characters overcome their challenges along the way to discovering their happiness together. And in this case, both Odette and Wyatt have a number of obstacles between them. Seeing how they get through it all is what makes me enjoy their story.

"Midnight Moonrising" by
K.S. Haigwood & Anne Conley

As if learning she was a werewolf, that her husband had been the pack Alpha, and that because she had killed him she was now the Alpha wasn't enough, Mena has been having a mental battle with her wolf. A battle that she appears to be losing by the fact that her wolf has been able to take control of Mena's body almost whenever she wants, regardless of what Mena desires.

It doesn't help that Mena loves a vampire by the name of Pheonix, but her wolf can't stand him and instead wants Alex, the detective who is trying to find the person who murdered Mena's husband. Being mortal, the detective is unaware of the existence of werewolves, vampires, or witches & must not be told the truth. Add to that the fact that some of her pack have rebelled & do not want Mena to be their Alpha, and there seems to be more than enough trouble for her to overcome in this book. But honestly, that's just the beginning. From there the hits just keep coming.

I liked this book a lot. It was fast paced and kept throwing surprise after surprise at me as I read. Parts of the book could have used another round of editing, but the story more than made up for that. But do be warned that this is not a story meant for younger readers as some of the details are a bit graphic.

I enjoyed the twists this story took & am looking forward to seeing where the authors will take this story next. I will definitely be continuing on by reading the next book in this series.

Monday, June 29, 2020

"Dream Angel" by Jo Wilde

Every few years, Stephanie (Stevie)'s mom would suddenly up & move the two of them from one tiny town in the middle of nowhere to another one somewhere else that was equally as remote, and where they would have to start out all over yet again. This time it had happened on her birthday, with her mother whisking her away from the few friends she had made without even a real chance to say goodbye.

But this is where things started getting weird. In the expected small town in New Orleans where they wound up, Stevie became friends with an older woman who could speak with the dead. There were also the usual "frenemies" in her new school, as well as a boy who may not be what he seemed.

There was a lot going on in this book. The plot twists started almost from page one and kept coming all the way through to the end. And every time I thought I had something figured out, I soon learned that I was wrong.

I liked the way that the author included a bit of southern slang when the appropriate characters were speaking. It added another level to the writing in the story that I appreciated. I do, however, wish that the book had undergone another round with an editor as it would have cleaned up a lot of the other issues I encountered.

Overall though, I did enjoy reading this book. As I mentioned above, the plot twists kept me guessing as to what was about to happen and the true motives of the characters all the way to the end of the book. And to tell the truth, I'm still not entirely certain that I really understand what was happening in the end. I think that I'm going to need to read the next book in the series to actually grasp the truth behind all the twists as well as to see what will happen next.

Monday, June 22, 2020

"Residuum: Ghosts of Southampton (Book 2)" by I.D. Johnson

This was the conclusion to Meg and Charlie's story. After almost losing the chance to find love with each other, they had both survived the Titanic's sinking and Meg’s introduction to Charlie's family. Life has not been easy for them, and became less so after having barely survived the Titanic. Now, they need to survive their engagement party and let the world know that Meg was still alive. After that, they will need to deal with Meg's past before they can face a new future together.

Like the previous two stories in this series, I greatly enjoyed reading this book. The author did a very good job of letting us see into the heads of her characters as they came to grips with what they have lived through and find a way to deal with the trauma that was left behind.

Each of the books in this series were very hard to put down at night. These stories are ones that I think anyone who has enjoyed the rest of the books in this series will also want to read.

One small warning, however, part of the trauma that one of the characters must deal with involves her having grown up in an abusive home. While I don't believe there was anything graphically described in this book, the reader should be aware that dealing with being a trauma survivor is one of the themes of this book.

In my opinion, it is a story that is well worth reading.

Monday, June 15, 2020

"To End All Wars" by David Tallerman

In the middle of WWI, Forrester is leading a raid against the German army. It doesn't seem to be going well for him, and after calling for a retreat back to their side of the front, Forrester is hit by a bullet in the leg.

While struggling to make it back alive, there is an unusual light in the night sky. After that, everyone he stumbles across on both sides of the front appears to be sleeping. Gas masks didn't protect from the effect, and Forrester isn't able to wake any of the sleeping soldiers.

When found by his fellow soldiers, Forrester is quickly taken to a recovery center, where he quickly realizes that something is not right. He is constantly locked in his room & kept isolated from the other patients in the house. And then the instances where everyone around him falls into an unwakeable slumber start happening. Clearly there is more going on than he is being told about. But what is it?

This was a fascinating story. The farther I read, the more the story pulled me in. There is so much more going on here than just a tale of WWI, and while I would like to delve more into what is happening, I don't want to give away what is clearly a major plot point of the story.

There is a cost to war that goes beyond the toll it takes upon a person, but when something happens that could possibly end not just the one battle, but potentially stop all wars, is there any price that would be too high to be worth no more wars? And who gets to decide what is right or wrong? And also, who would be willing or able to stand up and do what is right, no matter the cost?

This story really made me think. After all, is there too high a cost for peace? And when is one being's suffering worth the cost or is it too high of a price to be paid? These are only some of the questions that this story made me think about. I found it to be a well written tale & one that I am glad that I had the opportunity to read. I believe that others will too. Recommended.

Monday, June 8, 2020

"Wonderland Woes" by Addie J King

First they received donuts with the phrase "EAT ME" written in frosting on them, then a bottle of wine with the phrase "drink me" showed up, then there's a white rabbit in the yard. What's next?

It seems that a trip to Wonderland is likely the next destination for Janie and her friends and family. But why? What is going on in Wonderland that is about to require their help. And exactly how similar or different are the rules of Wonderland from the realm of faerie that they are already familiar with?

As a long time fan of fairy tales I was highly entertained by this story and the very unique spin that the author placed on a story that many have likely read (or who watched the Disney Animated Movie) as children.

I enjoyed the author's take on the familiar characters and her descriptions of what has likely happened in Wonderland since Alice had first visited there oh so many years before. All the outrageous characters I expected to see appeared in this story in often unexpected ways.

As with her other books in this series that I have read so far, I enjoyed this one as well. It was great fun to see the familiar characters grow and watch how they dealt with new and unexpected challenges. If you enjoyed her previous books in this series, you should enjoy reading this one too.

“The Gender Secret” by Bella Forrest

This was the sequel to “The Gender Game” Violet has been set up to be used as a pawn by both the Matrian and the Patrian societies. S...