Thursday, September 20, 2012

Book Review: Sinful Seduction by Ann Christopher

Author: Ann Christopher
Genre: Romance, Fiction
Release: February, 2012
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 3.5/5
Description: Scion of a powerful family, Antonios Davies has come home to take his rightful place as head of his family's respected New York auction house. But the former soldier is haunted by memories of war…and the woman who has consumed his dreams for months.

Talia Adams fell in love with Tony in the poignant letters they exchanged while he was overseas. But the beautiful painter has wounds of her own. She isn't prepared for the seductive stranger who shows up on her doorstep…or the passion that sweeps them past the point of no return. Are they ready to let go of the past for the most passionate future imaginable?
Review: Sinful Temptation is the second book in Ms. Christopher's Davies Legacy: Twins of Sin series. Though I liked the first one better (Sinful Seduction), this book was a good read.
  •  At times, the book was a bit slow for me. It didn't happen often, so I was still able to finish.
  •  The letters between Talia and Tony. We were able to take a peek into their characters through these letters.
  • This novel was emotionally charged, touching, and most importantly believable. Unfortunately, there are romance novels out there that aren't believeable and leave me feeling like, "Yeah right." Sinful Seduction is not one of those novels. Believeable from start to finish.
  • Tony was a strong character, but we were able to see his vulnerability while he suffered from PTSD.
  • I liked that the romance didn't come easily. Though they fell in love with each other through the letters, Talia and Tony didn't automatically fall in bed with each other when they finally met.
  • I would love to see a story about the romance brewing between Gloria, Talia's sister, and Cooper, Tony's cousin!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (1)

W.O.W. is hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine.
I can't wait to read...
House Rules (A Chicagoland Vampires novel) by Chloe Neill
February, 2013
From Goodreads:
In a city full of vampires, trouble never sleeps.

At the tender age of 27, Merit became a sword-wielding vampire. Since then, she’s become the protector of her House, watched Chicago nearly burn to the ground, and seen her Master fall and rise. Now she’ll see her mettle—and her metal —tested like never before.

It started with two . . . Two rogues vanishing without a trace. Someone is targeting Chicago’s vampires, and anyone could be next. With their house in peril, Merit and her Master, the centuries old Ethan Sullivan, must race to stop the disappearances. But as they untangle a web of secret alliances and ancient evils, they realize their foe is more familiar, and more powerful, than they could have ever imagined
I love, love, LOVE Chloe Neill and am hooked on her Chicagoland Vampires series (as well as her Dakr Elite series). Merit is such an awesome character.
So...what are you waiting on?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Book Review: Catch Me by Lisa Gardner

Author: Lisa Gardner
Genre: Suspense
Release: February, 2012
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 4/5
Description: In four days, someone is going to kill me...
Detective D. D. Warren is hard to surprise. But a lone woman outside D.D.'s latest crime scene shocks her with a remarkable proposition: Charlene Rosalind Carter Grant believes she will be murdered in four days. And she wants Boston's top detective to handle the death investigation.

It will be up close and personal. No evidence of forced entry, no sign of struggle.
Charlie tells a chilling story: Each year at 8:00 p.m. on January 21st, a woman has died. The victims have been childhood best friends from a small town in New Hampshire; the motive remains unknown. Now only one friend, Charlie, remains to count down her final hours.

But as D.D. quickly learns, Charlie Grant doesn't plan on going down without a fight. By her own admission, the girl can outshoot, outfight, and outrun anyone in Boston. Which begs the question, is Charlie the next victim, or the perfect perpetrator? As D.D. tracks a vigilante gunman who is killing pedophiles in Boston, she must also delve into the murders of Charlie's friends, racing to find answers before the next gruesome January 21 anniversary. Is Charlie truly in danger, or is she hiding a secret that may turn out to be the biggest threat of all?

In four days, someone is going to kill me. But the son of a bitch has gotta catch me first.
Review: A young woman has approached Detective D.D. Warren about solving her murder should it happen. Charlene Rosalind Carter Grant, known as Charlie, thinks she has four days to live. Two years ago, her bff, Randi was murdered on January 21st. Then, exactly one year later, her bff, Jackie, was murdered. Charlie believes she's next. Charlie's determined not to go down without a fight. Can D.D. help save Charlie before it's too late?
  •  Not much I didn't like. After the prologue, it started off a little slow, but definitely picks up the pace.
  •  This book had so many twists and turns. It kept me interested. Just when I thought something was true in the story, something else would come up to prove me wrong.
  • The prologue was so chilling. It immediately caught my attention and had me hooked. I read on, wanting to know what was next.
  • I like that it could be a standalone. I didn't know until after I read Catch Me, that it was actually part of the D.D. Warren series. I didn't have to read the previous books to understand what was going in in this one.
  • I love Charlie's strength. We can see her vulnerability. She's scared, but that doesn't stop her from doing what she has to do to stay alive. She takes boxing lessons, gets in shape, goes running, makes plans, buys a gun, takes shooting lessons. One thing's for sure. She's not going down without a fight.
  • I like D.D. Warren's character. She's a new mom and hates to leave her baby & boyfriend, but knows duty calls. She's good at what she does, but she's not hardened by what she sees. If anything, it makes her yearn for her baby even more. She agrees to help Charlie, even though she's not sure about it.
I will definitely be looking into reading more in Lisa Gardner's D.D. Warren series!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Book Review: Mesmerize by Artist Arthur

Author: Artist Arthur
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Fiction
Release: January 31, 2012
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 3.5/5

Description: You can't move forward until you deal with the past….

Starting over is nothing new to diplomat's daughter Lindsey Yi. She's grown up changing schools the way other girls change clothes. Still, moving to Lincoln, Connecticut, is different. Although she's still reeling from the loss of her parents in an accident, Lindsey is finally in a place that feels like home. Because here, Lindsey's ability to read other people's thoughts doesn't make her weird. It makes her one of the Mystyx.When Dylan Murphy—hot, popular and a senior—starts to notice her, things get serious, fast. But even as she's figuring out how she really feels, the Mystyx realize that they're not the only supernaturals in town. There are other gifted teens who have different motives. And they are hoping to get close enough to the Mystyx to convert them—and the world—to Darkness.

Review: Mesmerize is the fourth book in Artist Arthur's Mystyx series. This book focuses on Lindsey.

  • The action seemed a bit rushed, especially at the end.
  • I wasn't crazy about Dylan's character. He treated Lindsey like crap (and, unfortunately, she took it).
  • The cover model doesn't really match Lindsey, who is Korean-American.
  • I love the diversity in the whole series. The characters range from African American to Korean American.
  • The book is standalone. You can read it without reading the others, but I wouldn't suggest it. It's more enjoyable if you read the series in order.
  • We got to know Lindsey a little more. In the previous books, she seemed boring. I wasn't sure if I'd like her story. But Mesmerize gives her a bit more depth.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Book Review: First Date by Krista McGee

Author: Krista McGee
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Christian
Release: January, 2012
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 4/5

Description: The last thing Addy Davidson wants is to be on a reality TV show where the prize is a prom date with the President's son.

She's focused on her schoolwork so she can get a scholarship to an Ivy League college, uncomfortable in the spotlight, never been on a date, and didn't even audition for it.

But she got selected anyway.

So she does her best to get eliminated on the very first show. Right before she realizes that the President's son is possibly the most attractive guy she has ever seen in person, surprisingly nice, and seemingly unimpressed by the 99 other girls who are throwing themselves at him.

Addy's totally out of her comfort zone but that may be right where God can show her all that she was meant to be.

Review: This story is a cute 21st century version of the biblical story of Esther. In the story, Addy, a Christian teen is told the principal of her small Christian private high school, that she's been entered into a reality show competition. On "The Book of Love", 100 teen girls compete to be the prom date of the president's son, Jonathan. Addy is not thrilled and doesn't want to do it, but her principal convinces to do it for the school, which needs exposure and funds. What follows is Addy's journey to finding out who she is in Christ.

  • I didn't like the fact that the principal entered her into the competition without checking or discussing with her first. I don't remember it mentioning him discussing with her uncle, who is her guardian, either for that matter. I think I would've liked the book even more had this whole competition been her choice.
  • I liked Addy and Jonathan's romance. It was very sweet...not intense. And it didn't happen too quick.
  • I loved the fact that Addy struggled with sharing her faith. Not every Christian teen finds it easy to share their faith with others, especially strangers who are seen as enemies.
  • The story behind Addy's missionary parents and their deaths was very interesting. I don't want to give up details, but it was interesting to see Addy struggle with whether or not she lived up to their legacy.
  • Addy grows in her faith.
First Date shows how God can use you in ways you couldn't imagine.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Review: Southern Fried Sushi by Jennifer Rogers Spinola

Author: Jennifer Rogers Spinola
Genre: Fiction, Christian, Romance
Release: October, 2011
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 5/5

Description:Ride the rollercoaster of Shiloh Jacobs’s life as her dreams derail, sending her on a downward spiral from the heights of an AP job in Tokyo to penniless in rural Virginia. Trapped in a world so foreign to her sensibilities and surrounded by a quirky group of friends, will she break through her hardened prejudices before she loses those who want to help her? Can she find the key to what changed her estranged mother’s life so powerfully before her death that she became a different woman—and can it help Shiloh too?

Review: Shiloh Jacobs lives in Japan where she has the perfect life, perfect job, and perfect fiance. Sure she overspends to keep up an image, causing her to have stacks of credit card bills, but other than that, life is good. Until her mother back in the States dies and leaves her house to Shiloh. Shiloh was not close to her mother. At all. Yet, she goes to Staunton, Virginia to the funeral and to sell the house. While there, Shiloh loses both her job and fiance. Life couldn't get any worse. Only it does. Her hopes for a quick sale are dashed. God has funny ways of getting your attention and this is His way of getting Shiloh's. So now, Shiloh's stuck in Staunton, surrounded by her mom's friends, people Shiloh thinks are rednecks. What Shiloh doesn't realize is, these "rednecks" are teach her about true friendship, happiness, and most importantly, God's love.

  • The beginning was a little slow. It picked up more after she receives the call about her mother's death.
  • It was slightly stereotypical of the South, but not enough not to like the book.

  • The cover and title immediately grabbed my attention! I mean, come on. "Southern Fried Sushi"...what a cool title. The cover is colorful and the mix of cultures is evident (Japanese dress & fan with cowboy boots).
  • I loved Shiloh's character. Throughout the book, you see her growth and will be rooting for her by the end.
  • The secondary characters are pretty awesome, too. They're well-rounded, three dimensional characters, just like Shiloh. Her mom's friends all have their little quirks that makes them endearing.
  • The message of God and His love is written in the story without being too preachy. It's subtle, but...obvious. I know that's an oxymoron, but that's how I can describe it. It's not the "beat you with the Bible" type of message, but a "Let me tell you what God has done for me" type of message.
  • I love that Shiloh did not automatically accept Christ. Had she immediately accepted Him, it wouldn't have been real. She struggled. Thought about it. Then struggled some more. It makes the book more authentic.
  • There's a little romance in it, but that's not the focus. The focus is more on Shiloh and her growth as a person. But Ms. Spinola does add a splash of romance.

If you're into light-hearted books with a tiny splash of romance, Southern Fried Sushi is perfect. I am now reading the second book, Like Sweet Potato Pie (again with the cool titles), and I'm loving it so far. I'll definitely be on the lookout for book #3, Til Grits Do Us Part.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Review: In Seconds by Brenda Novak

Author: Brenda Novak
Genre: Fiction, Romantic Suspense
Release: August, 2011
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 4/5

Description: In the whole state of Montana, there's nowhere to hide. . .

Laurel Hodges has changed her identity twice. She's been on the run for the past four years, trying to outdistance the men who blame her for the death of one of their own. She's finally found the peace and stability she needs, for herself and her two children, in the small town of Pineview, Montana. But just when she thinks they're safe — the nightmare starts all over again. The Crew, a ruthless prison gang with ties to Laurel's brother, will never forget and they'll never forgive. And now that they've finally found her again, they'll stop at nothing. It could all end in seconds. Only Sheriff Myles King stands between Laurel and the men who want her dead.

Review: In Seconds is Ms. Novak's second book in her Bulletproof series (Inside, being #1). Where Inside focuses on Virgil, In Seconds focuses on his sister, Laurel, who now goes by Vivian. She's running from the gang called The Crew, set on revenge. She's left witness protection with her two kids and now live in a small town, Pineview, Montana. Her next door neighbor happens to be the town's sexy sheriff, Myles King. Laurel develops feelings for Myles, but she fights them, believing she can't trust anyone in law enforcement. Myles develops feelings for Laurel, but is still hurting from his wife's death three years ago. Will these two lovebirds be able to get past their hurts and mistrust? And if they do, will The Crew get to Laurel before they can get something started? You'll have to read to find out!

  • The fact that I couldn't put the book down. This is only cos it meant I stayed up til all hours of the night trying to finish the book.

  • The fact that I couldn't put the book down. You know the book's good when you absolutely must keep reading to find out what happens next.
  • Ms. Novak paints pictures with her words. I can see in my head the scenes in the book.
  • I didn't have to read Inside to understand this book. Though I probably would've understood more had I read Inside, In Seconds can be a standalone book.
  • I liked the relationship between Myles and Laurel. They both feel something for each other, but they don't rush and jump right into bed with each other. They took their time. They both had children and they put their children first. 
  • The characters were realistic...not perfect; not terribly flawed that I couldn't stand them. They were just right.
If you love romantic suspense, you'll definitely love Brenda Novak's In Seconds. I definitely have to read book #3, In Close.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Review: My Face Book by Star Bright Books

Author: Star Bright Books
Genre: Children, Board Book
Release: August, 2011
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 5/5

Description: Babies love looking at other babies and these charming baby faces, smiling, frowning, and laughing are sure to captivate and delight toddlers and babies. They will ask to look at and to read the book again and again. Self-expression has never been more adorable!

Review: This is a cute board book for parents of toddlers. It features faces of other toddlers with different facial expressions. And I must say, the babies are so precious! I love the fact that it features babies of different races...not just one. My Face Book is a short and sweet read!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Review: Mayhem by Artist Arthur

Author: Artist Arthur
Genre: Paranormal, YA, Fiction
Release: July, 2011
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 4/5

Description: A lot can change in a few months. Jake Palmer is living proof of that. In a short time, the once-shy loner has discovered his incredible supernatural abilities and forged a tight bond with his fellow Mystyx. What’s more—he’s fallen for his best friend, Krystal. And fallen hard.

Still, some things remain the same—like the jocks who keep bullying him. Even though they have no idea how powerful Jake has become. And while he tries to follow Krystal’s advice, he may not be able to keep his cool much longer. But there are bigger problems ahead, because the darkness that’s been hovering nearby is about to descend on the town of Lincoln, Connecticut. And when it does, the Mystyx will learn who to trust, who to fear and just how much is at stake...

Review: Mayhem, the third book in the Mystyx series, focuses on Jake Kramer. Jake is known at school as a "tracker" - a person from the wrong side of the tracks - and he's bullied because of it. In Mayhem, Jake struggles not only with being bullied and loving Krystal (from Manifest) from afar, but he also has to struggle with a darkness raging inside of him that's trying to woo him to the other side. Does he fight this darkness or succomb to it? You'd have to read the book to find out!

What I Didn't Like
  • Honestly, I can't think of what I didn't like about this book. It was slow at times, but not often. The action made up for it.
What I Liked
  • I liked Jake's character. I liked that he struggled with succombing to the darkness. He didn't automatically ignore it; there were times he really wanted to give in. This made him well rounded and believable. I mean, the darkness was offering things that would make life easier for Jake. It wouldn't have been believable had Jake completely ignored the darkness and didn't struggle. I found myself rooting for Jake throughout the book.

  • Jake and Krystal's relationship. I liked seeing their relationship grow from book 1 to now. I'm not going to say much because I don't want to give it away.

  • There was more excitement in this book than the others. It could be because the series is reaching the end, but Mayhem had a little more action in it than Manifest and Mystify.

  • A few more questions were answered here, especially questions about how the Darkness started and why the 4 were chosen, etc.

I can't wait to read the 4th (and final?) book in the series, Mesmerize.


Welcome to my book blog!

I already have two other blogs (Life, Love, and the Pursuit of Publication and The International Diva)and I post my reviews on LLPP, but it's gotten to be a bit much.

I figured why not just have a separate blog for my book reviews?

I read. Alot. And even more since I joined Netgalley.

So, here it is. My book blog.

For the next week, I'll post my 2012 reviews, and then starting in September, I'll post new reviews.

My past reviews will stay on my other blog.

Three blogs...smh.

Am I crazy or what?