Monday, April 23, 2018

ARC Review: Unbury Carol by Josh Malerman

Release Date: April 10, 2018
Publisher: Del Rey
Format: ebook
Pages: 384 pages
Genre:  Fiction
Buy: Kindle | Hardcover

Synopsis: 

Carol Evers is a woman with a dark secret. She has died many times . . . but her many deaths are not final: They are comas, a waking slumber indistinguishable from death, each lasting days.

Only two people know of Carol’s eerie condition. One is her husband, Dwight, who married Carol for her fortune, and—when she lapses into another coma—plots to seize it by proclaiming her dead and quickly burying her . . . alive. The other is her lost love, the infamous outlaw James Moxie. When word of Carol’s dreadful fate reaches him, Moxie rides the Trail again to save his beloved from an early, unnatural grave.

And all the while, awake and aware, Carol fights to free herself from the crippling darkness that binds her—summoning her own fierce will to survive. As the players in this drama of life and death fight to decide her fate, Carol must in the end battle to save herself.

The haunting story of a woman literally bringing herself back from the dead, Unbury Carol is a twisted take on the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the final page.

Review:

I've never read Josh Malerman before but I forsee a few of his books making their way onto my TBR list. A cross between a supernatural western and sleeping beauty. This book was really well done. There was mythology, "magic" and some really creepy characters. Carol has a condition where under stress she lapses into a coma where she appears dead.  Her mother has always feared that she would one day be buried alive and makes sure that Carol always tells someone else about her condition. After her best friend dies the only other person in the town who knows about Carol is her husband, fearing that this isn't good enough Carol decides to confide in her maid but before she can she lapses into a coma. Her husband decides this is his chance to get rid of his wife and keep her fortune for himself. What he doesn't know is that Carol did mention to her maid that her boyfriend from the past, the outlaw James Moxie also knows of Carols condition. When Carol "dies" her maid sends off a telegram to the outlaw and thus begins a race to save Carol.

There were so many really interesting elements to this book from the characters to the mystery of the "trail".  The mystery kept you on the edge of your seat right up to the bitter end. I really enjoyed this book.


Disclaimer: I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher through netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review. 

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Friday, April 20, 2018

Audio Book Review: Walk of Shame (full series) by Victoria Ashley

Release Date: November 22, 2016
Publisher: Audible Studios
Format: Audio
Length: 15 hours 22 minutes
Narrator: Alexandra Shawnee & Beckett Greylock
Genre: Romance
Buy: Audible | Kindle | Paperback

Synopsis: 

Slade
My name is Slade Merrick and I'm a f--king sex addict... I've been told it's a problem. But I see it as a passion; something that I'm good at. And who the f--k stops something that they're good at? They want me to seek help; get my cock in check. Don't judge my lifestyle. You're no better than me. Just admit it, you like to f--k too. Sex is what I do best; my own personal high, so I embrace it instead of being ashamed. When I'm not f--king, I'm slinging drinks at Walk Of Shame or stripping my way into your bed; another thing I'm good at. Every woman's darkest fantasy brought to life. So, am I stopping? F--k no. Sex is beautiful, raw, and erotic and I get off knowing I can have it with anyone I want... with the exception of her. Aspen. She walks into the club swaying those hips, instantly drawing my cock to attention. She's pure perfection. That is, until she opens that mouth, drawing me in and for the first time in forever I want something more than sex. I want her and she hates it.

Hemy (Walk Of Shame #2)

My name is Hemy Knox and I'm a f--king heartbreaker... I've hurt the one person that means the most to me in life; the only woman I have ever f--king loved. I let the drugs, alcohol and wild life take over; consume me. I got her where I wanted her and ripped her f--king heart out. Since then, I've spent countless nights having dirty, meaningless sex with a multitude of people; only leaving them wanting and begging for more with no regrets. Some may even call me the devil; soulless. They look and judge, but there is one thing they don't know; no one does. I want more than this life of stripping and sleeping around; the never ending party. I want love and everything that comes with it; that high that never ends. The problem is... I only want it with her. Onyx. She refuses to be mine... again. She's smart and it's a mother f--king pain in my ass; guarding her heart while ripping mine right out of my chiseled chest. I can't say that I blame her. I always was a dumb ass when it came to the emotions of a woman, especially her. She wants to see me suffer as much as I made her; watch me wither and f--king die at her feet. She wants to crush me until I'm no longer breathing and I will let her, because it hurts far less than not having her as mine. I will stop at nothing to make her mine again.

Cale (Walk Of Shame #3)

My name is Cale Kinley and I'm a f--king virgin...Well, with the exception of my tongue. The countless things I can do with my tongue are bound to leave you breathless and begging for more, but more...is something that I can't give. It's a choice. My choice. There's a reason for that. A very good reason, and that reason is her. Riley. She's the only woman that I want to bury myself deep in. The one woman I have wanted since I was old enough to f--k. I never got my chance though, because she left. She had no choice and it stung like hell.

Review:

This was broken down by book.  Slade Merrick was first.  This book started out really rocky for me.  The writing felt a bit juvenile and repetitive the sex scenes written in a very elementary way, but as it continued it did get better.  Its like the author finally caught her groove.  The story itself got better, the sex steamier and I actually found myself enjoying the story. Slade is a broken man who is drowning his broken heart in booze and sex.  He gave up a promising career to strip at the Walk of Shame. His rule is to never have sex with the same person twice but when Aspen stumbles into his life he can't seem to help his heart from thawing and he starts feeling things he hasn't for a long time.

Hemy Knox came next. Hemy is a stripper at the Walk of Shame bar, the love of his life left him 4 years ago when he runs into her at a job. Seeing her again Hemy is determined to make her his again. Onyx left 4 years ago because she couldn't stand to have Hemy continue to break her heart with his drug use and the women who would always run their hands over him while he was high. In Slade it was alluded to that Hemy is bisexual and with the exception of one minor scene I just didn't see it at all.  Once again the writing began extremely repetitive and simple.  If I had to hear about Onxy's P*&^ one more time....use some imagination, her sex, her wetness, anything but repeating the P word several times in one sentence. Again the story line was good but the writing could use some work.  Although I do have a thing for tattooed pierced men.

Cale Kinley, he keeps referring to himself as a virgin but I'm not sure I would quite agree with that.  No he hasn't had intercourse but he's pretty much done everything else. Cale promised to save himself for his one love Riley. When Riley returns to town and she reconnects with Cale it starts out shaky but then quickly gets heated.  While the sex was better in this book than the previous two, I think this writer is better at the romance than the smoking hot, panties up in flames books.  Keep it simple and tame and let the story carry the book.  Its almost painful reading some of these encounters. Not sure I will pick up the next books in this series.


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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Audio Book Review: Tricked by Kevin Hearne

Release Date: April 24, 2012
Publisher: Random House Audio
Format: Audio
Length: 10 hours 41 minutes
Narrator: Luke Daniels
Genre: Fantasy/
Buy: Audible | Kindle | Paperback

Synopsis: 

Druid Atticus O'Sullivan hasn't stayed alive for more than two millennia without a fair bit of Celtic cunning. So when vengeful thunder gods come Norse by Southwest looking for payback, Atticus, with a little help from the Navajo trickster god Coyote, lets them think that they've chopped up his body in the Arizona desert.

But the mischievous Coyote is not above a little sleight of paw, and Atticus soon finds that he's been duped into battling bloodthirsty desert shape-shifters called skinwalkers. Just when the Druid thinks he's got a handle on all the duplicity, betrayal comes from an unlikely source. If Atticus survives this time, he vows he won't be fooled again. Famous last words.

Review:

Better than the last book this one take place a little while after the last one. This time Atticus learns the consequences of his actions in killing yet another God and also learns that he is not as smart as he thinks he is. Coyote agrees to help Atticus disappear from the God's radar but what he wants in return is not all that it seems.  Coyote manipulates him, tricking him into helping him with skin walkers that are killing people on the Rez. Leif, Atticus's long time vampire friend whose vendetta against Thor put Atticus in the position he is in today also tricks him into helping him take back his territory.

The relationship between Atticus and his apprentice is also explored and we almost lose a dear friend. I love Atticus's dog Oberon and have found out that there are two books with Oberon as the main character which I need to find. Overall I think this book redeemed a lot of the negative feelings I was having toward this series from the last book.  I'm glad I hung in there.



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Monday, April 16, 2018

Book Review: Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson

Release Date: August 9, 2016
Publisher: Amistad
Format: ebook
Pages: 197 pages
Genre:  Fiction
Buy: Kindle | Paperback 

Synopsis:

Running into a long-ago friend sets memory from the 1970s in motion for August, transporting her to a time and a place where friendship was everything—until it wasn’t. For August and her girls, sharing confidences as they ambled through neighborhood streets, Brooklyn was a place where they believed that they were beautiful, talented, brilliant—a part of a future that belonged to them.

But beneath the hopeful veneer, there was another Brooklyn, a dangerous place where grown men reached for innocent girls in dark hallways, where ghosts haunted the night, where mothers disappeared. A world where madness was just a sunset away and fathers found hope in religion.

Review:

This is not your average coming of age story.  This is written more like poetry, or stream of consciousness.  You can taste the humid air of Brooklyn as you peer out of a 3rd floor window down onto the streets of another time. We like to look back on childhood as carefree but it wasn't always even though it felt that way. Four young girls form a bond they think will last forever.  Each with hopes and dreams and secrets. 1970's Brooklyn was a time of change, the neighborhood changed, black power was a movement, yet kids still played in the fire hydrants and stole kisses in alleyways. As each of the girls grows up they find their own path, some make it, some get lost along the way.

This is a magical book, the way it is written takes some getting used to but you find yourself rereading sentences that take you back in time. I never would have picked it up if it wasn't a selection of a book club I just joined and I'm so glad to have read it.  Its not a long book but it packs a punch.








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