Saturday, 23 September 2017

Her - Shelby Lamb

Summary:

Tinsley had always been a free spirit, until one side of her face and body got badly disfigured in an accident that killed her bestfriend. She's always blamed hersel for Becky's death, as she had been the one behind the wheel. Now twenty-five, she's down and out, most of her past friends are marries or engaged, and she hardly leaves the house.

Then everything changes when she meets Jax.

Jax is sexy, tall, dark and handsome, and a dream all wrapped in one. He fills her with more hope than she'd ever imagined. But Tinsley is not used to feeling so close to someone and she's going to need all of Becky's help to be true to her heart.

Luckily, Becky is all around. She's in the trees, the grass, the earth. Becky is the oly outside love Tinsey has ever known, and she's saying it's time to discover something new.

But can and should Tinsleey really let go of her.


Review:

How is a wonderful 1 hour story told from the perspective of Tinsley who is cstill mentally recovering from the crash that claimed her bestfriends life which se holds herself soley responsible for. As a character I fell for her immedietly, I just wanted to hug her and comfort her. You can feel the pain she s felt and continues to feel as she recovers. Jax feels like a ray of sunshine to me and clearly to Tinsley.

Her care worker wants desperately to help her and ease her out of the shell she has put herself in to hide her scars from everyone. In the early mornings she runs ad thats where she see's a male whom wants her to get home safe, reassuring him she will get home just fine they part ways and unknown to Tinsley she would later meet this jogger in a store shes trialing at and following a last minute set up date by her care worker all she wants to do is go home but he seats himself opposite her and gives her compliments but when he takes her hand and sees the scars there that she hadnt covered she darts away leaving him behind.

I feel like there is more to this story than what we see so im veryeccited tosee what is to come in the next installment. TInsley is such a delicate person i want to care for her so i'm definetly going to bethinking about her until I see her again and become further aware of her story.

As I've said before, Shelby has a unique way of writing and it shows again here which I love, I feel like this sort of series is unique and is going to be one of the best I come to see. If you ever get to read any of Shelbys work please take it because you wont regret it. It's definetly a 5/5 from me without a second thought.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

The Red Thread (The Straits Quartet #1) by Dawn Farnham Blog Tour Review







Information about the Book

Title: The Red Thread (The Straits Quartet #1)
Author: Dawn Farnham
Genre: Asian Historical Fiction
Publisher: Monsoon Books
Format: Paperback
Published: 7th April 2015






Summary:

Set against the backdrop of 1830s Singapore where piracy, crime, triads, and tigers are commonplace, this historical romance follows the struggle of two lovers Zhen, a Chinese coolie and triad member, and Charlotte, an 18-year-old Scots woman and sister of Singapores Head of Police. Two cultures bound together by the invisible threads of fate yet separated by cultural diversity.


Review:

I love learning about new cultures and countries so when I was asked if I wanted to read The Red Thread and write an honest review for the upcoming blog tour I simply couldn't resist. The Synopsis excited me as I wanted to know how everything would play out but firstly how everything would come to be. As a genre that I don't read, I'm actually pretty sure this is my first Asian Historical Fiction book I've ever read and it was an enjoyable first experience.

Set in the Singapore of the 1830's, the story follows Charlotte and Zhen in their different, yet intertwined paths, the Red Thread of the title binding them together. Charlotte is young and now in a foreign land which is not like the Singapore we know of today and Zhen  who's portrayed as super sexy, both of them I cared for and sympathised with them but part of me didn't feel all that invested in them in the end. They were both great characters in a great story I just didn't fully connect with them but I loved them all I could. Alongside our two main characters Dawn mixes a number of real-life characters from 1830s Singapore into the pages,  George Coleman and his partner Takouhi most notably, Coleman was an Irish architect who was responsible for the infrastructure of Singapore 

As a whole I thought the story was very well written, with some good prose and some suggestive passages, so I did enjoy the book, its a great mix of love and culture which in the set period of time and place are conflicting things. There has clearly been a large amount of research into each aspect of the cultural and historic moments within the story. Dawn has done a great job and I can understand why she has gone on to write another 3 books under The Straits Quartet series title.

I love the whole belief in the red thread.'The two people connected by the red thread are destined lovers, regardless of place, time, or circumstances. This magical cord may stretch or tangle, but never break. This myth is similar to the Western concept of soulmate or a destined flame.'

Despite not fully connecting with the characters but loving the plot and the history of the book I can easily give this book a 4 out of 5. Although I have read a few reviews which pointed out many negatives I didn't feel as though they were negatives to me in the situations regarding the plot and the time frame. One day I hope I'll be able to pick up more of Dawns books and enjoy them as I did this one. I recommend this book to anybody who loves history and/or romance. 






About The Author








Dawn Farnham is the author of The Straits Quartet (The Red Thread, The Shallow Seas, The Hills of Singapore and The English Concubine), as well as numerous short stories, plays and children’s books. A former long-term resident of Singapore, Dawn now calls Perth, Australia, home. Her new book, Finding Maria is published in October 2017. Learn more about Dawn at www.dawnfarnham.com.







*PLEASE NOTE* The Red Thread is going to be FREE on Amazon from 17th - 25th September



Monday 18th September



Tuesday 19th September



Wednesday 20th September



Thursday 21st September



Friday 22nd September



Saturday 23rd September



Sunday 24th September



Saturday, 16 September 2017

Mindless (Short Story) - Louise Cole




Synopsis:

‘My parents chose who they wanted to be and I knew it would end badly. What I didn’t see is I’d be the one to pay the price.’


Everything changes the day Stella is hit by a car outside her London council flat. It’s not an accident. It’s a warning. Her dumb, drug-dealing father and her soppy mother don’t have the sense between them to keep Stella and her little brother safe. Her father Joe has stolen from local mob boss Horse - and then his scheme to repay Horse goes south, and lands Joe in prison. Where he starts to talk.
Horse is coming for them. If anyone is going to protect her family, it will have to be Stella herself. But how far will she go? And who must she become in order to survive?

Tense, gritty and beautifully written, Mindless is the story of a clever girl trapped in a stupid, violent world. It will appeal to young adults and adults alike. Told by Stella itself, the story alternates between the thriller narrative and her later conversations with her psychiatrist.

Review:

Firstly I'd like to thank Louise for providing me a copy of Mindless for a honest review, I hope she likes what I have to say.

So we follow Stella who's clearly an intelligent young woman, she tells us her story and its a tense one at that. Her life isn't perfect but it is what it is and things change one day when Stella gets hit by a car right outside of her council flat in London and I have to admit I flinched at this scene, I physically recoiled which was a clear sign I was really into the book. Stella ends up in the hospital and goes on to recover from the incident and she becomes aware soon after that it wasn't an accident, instead it was a warning for her Father.

Stella clearly has more sense than both of her parents put together and her brother isn't like Stella, she quickly puts together the proof in her mind and a plan to execute, going on to confront her dad and he reassures her he's going to fix it all, but things goes south when the scheme he made to fix it all goes south and puts him behind bars where he can't keep his mouth shut and Stella remains aware throughout, figuring it out that if they can't do a good job of getting to Joe whilst behind bars, they'll hurt him through the people outside of prison whom he loves but Stella is already ready for this as her mind is the only one functioning.

The last part of the middle and the ending of the book blew me away, it was intense action and utterly jaw dropping. Stella is clearly a very strong and determined character well built and portrayed. Although only a short story I utterly loved it, I'd easily fall in love with Stella all over again if she ever resurfaced in any more work of Louise'. A short story indeed, immersive more so, action packed and wonderful I have to give it a 5/5 which it truly deserves. Louise has a great writing style which I fell in love with in The Devil's Poetry when I read it not so long back.

Champions: At Fires End (Champions #1) - Charlotte Jain

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Synopsis:


Seventeen-year-old best friends, April and Kyle, are thrown into the final battle of the Titan and Olympian war. Locked into an endless struggle, the Immortals have finally reached a solution - bestow mortal Champions with control over the elements to wage their final campaign.

Bestowed with control over fire and water, April and Kyle were raised by Immortals with a single purpose - win the war. After finally uncovering the remaining Champions' identities, April and Kyle must launch themselves into their final battle for survival. Winner takes all. But the Immortals are growing restless, and time is running out.
 

Review:

Thanks to Charlotte whom provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The story follows April and Kyle, two 17-year olds who've been chosen as two of the four Champions to wage the war for the Olympians against the Titans on earth. Both teenagers were raised and trained by Immortals, and both hold powers given to them at birth which allows them to control fire and and water along with several other abilities which are a little sprinkle pf surprise when they make an appearance. April and Kyle are on a mission to find the remaining two Champions as they come in pairs, but they’re supposed to train and then go on to destroy them. As both of them come to struggle to control their abilities that are slowly but surely wearing them down the inevitable war moves closer and closer and that's all they think about.

First of all, I went in to this book without any expectations, that's mostly down to me not knowing what to truly expect from the book. I really liked how Charlotte's story played out in the end, I loved the vivid descriptions which allowed me to, without much effort imagine each and every setting. Both the main characters and the side characters were well developed and portrayed, I wasn't too fond of Kim for some reason but I was inevitably drawn to Noah whom had this dark presence about him but that's a whole new can of worms that we definitely wont be opening here.

I used to love Greek Mythology as a kid so the mention of it within this book kind of re-awoke the child in me and loved it just as much as I did. I loved each part of the story and definitely wasn't expecting the ending. I got completely lost in the book, fully immersed and in love with what I was reading. April felt like a best friend for me I really hooked onto her or her to me and I was simply unable to not get any sort of emotional or on edge when she was involved in something. I did remain neutral on Kyle though, at first I loved him and all he was and brought to the story but by the time it ended, after all that had happened throughout the book I didn't hate nor love him. But all the characters were greatly written and portrayed and id happily give this book a 4/5 and ill definitely be wanting to see how the rest of this series goes.

If you’re a fan of Greek Mythology like my inner child and Percy Jackson, you may want give this series a go.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Retrograde - Peter Cawdron



Synopsis:

The international team at the Mars Endeavour colony is prepared for every eventuality except one—what happens when disaster strikes Earth?

Mankind has long dreamed of reaching out to live on other planets, and with the establishment of the Mars Endeavour colony, that dream has become reality. The fledgling colony consists of 120 scientists, astronauts, medical staff, and engineers. Buried deep underground, they’re protected from the harsh radiation that sterilizes the surface of the planet. The colony is prepared for every eventuality except one—what happens when disaster strikes Earth?

Review:

I love diving into more genres when I read, Sci-fi isn't a genre I often dive in to so when I first got this book I was apprehensive about how I would feel as I read this book but I was pleasantly surprised by it and actually loved it a lot more than I thought I would. I'm going to try and write this review without spoiling any of the story so please stay with me if at first it doesn't make sense.

We follow Liz and the other 119 people who are living in a colony on Mars. There are the Russians, Americans, Chinese and Eurasia - including UK, Japan, Spain and other countries. Told from the point of view of Liz we get to see the other colony inhabitants that she interacts with which provides us with a few main and some minor characters. Although we have all of these countries to interact with throughout the story there is an understanding that we don't have anything to do with several of the inhabitants. Writing it like this is so clever, it helps us gain a perspective on the size of the colony and its crew without having to make every person a main or minor character. They are all very intelligent characters and every time they do something that i see as incredibly cool or smart which is basically everything the do, it blows me away.

The characters are strong and well developed, I instantly loved Liz and all of those we read about, even those who aren't shown in the great light we wished everyone was. We have US Commander Connor, who is the ex military self taught astronaut who is right hand man to Harrison who's the gruff loud type who is soft underneath. We have more people, James and Michelle are the most notable. We see a small amount of the Eurasian contingent but of the Russian contingent we see their leader Vlad and their Dr, Anna. The other group we see more of compared to the Eurasians and Russians are the Chinese, with Doi as their commander and Jaiyun who is Liz's love interest. With all of these people interacting together throughout the story it's a great interplay of culture, emotions and personalities and it's done perfectly.

The plot is brilliant and maybe that's because the statement is coming from a girl who hasn't read much Sci-fi in her life? or maybe it is brilliant because well...it just is? the jury is still out on that one. As I read the first chapter I was just praying to myself that the book wasn't going to be hard to get into and wasn't going to drag out but it was a pleasant surprise to be hooked by the first chapter and every other chapter after. I was automatically trying to figure out what was going to come but I wasn't right with what I ended up with. There are so many great things about this book, most notably the great twists it holds, its incredibly suspenseful in parts. I feel like there are undertones of uniting no matter who we are, where we come from or the political issues going on that continue to have a hold on our world.

You can easily tell how much research and thought went into this book, it screams volumes and is incredibly effective. I think I had a mini emotional roller coaster as I read this novel and part of me wants way more from Peter that goes with this book, I'd happily have a 20 part series really and that's no lie. Thanks to Peters high volume of accuracy in detail it was easy for me to put the book down and still see all of what had happened. I was hooked and in love, the imagery was beautiful an I couldn't control myself when it came to talking to my mother about this book.

Cawdron has done an amazing job with this novel, its an easy 5/5 from me and I definitely want to check out more of his work.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

An American Cage by Ted Galdi

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Synopsis:


Three inmates break out of a maximum-security prison in Texas, one of them Danny Marsh, a suburban kid in his twenties who landed in jail because of a crime he never intended to commit.

An American Cage follows Danny and his two escape partners over a twenty-four-hour period as they struggle to cross Texas to freedom in Mexico. On this dangerous journey, Danny has to evade the rabid Texas authorities, and even worse, the schemes of one of his closest allies, who isn't who he seems.

Review:

So I managed to read this book in like 6 hours, it was so good I really couldn't put it down so it wasn't much of a surprise for me to read it all in one go. 

Danny Marsh is 24 years old, after one error of justice one night after a dinner out with his colleagues he ends up behind bars at Crick Maximum Security Prison located in Texas. He was often a victim of panic attacks until he was housed with a new cellmate, the soft spoken Professor Phil Zorn who's forty-ish and a neuroscience researcher and was able to offer Danny father-like support and encouragement. It is then no surprise that when Phil plans a prison break, Danny, as well as ghetto raised Monty Montgomery support the escape plan.

I don't want to run through the book bit by bit and ruin it from anyone so I'll leave it there but as soon as you open the book you are thrown right into the action, it's a gripping piece of writing all the right way through. We see all of this over a 24 hour period, the time is filled by great characterizations and relentless action which helps the time pass super quickly. The characters are perfectly crafted and well developed throughout the story which juts makes it all the more wonderful. 

Although there are three main characters and point of view, we see some of the story through other characters eyes which only deepens the link between story and reader. It was lovely to see the book broken up by changes in the POV which helped give the reader a look a all angles of the story including the police and the family of those involved. 

I wasn't expecting the ending to play out like it did, it was a great surprise and I actually loved it more than I probably should. This books was truly great, even much so that on Instagram where I was hosting a book tag in August I named this book my favourite book of the year so far. Ted Galdi crafted a great book with great characters and executed it all perfectly and even though I didn't know what exactly to expect from this book when I first opened it, I fell in love with what came from it in the end. I cant give this book anything less that the 5/5 it deserves, and I can only recommend this book to anyone out there who wants to be surprised and immersed in action.

Than you to Ted who provided a copy of the book for an honest review, it was an honour.

Saturday, 2 September 2017

I Know Where She Is - S.B Caves

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Synopsis:

An explosive, gripping thriller for fans of Karin Slaughter, Linwood Barclay and Karen Dionne, don’t miss this heart-stopping debut.

On the tenth anniversary of her daughter Autumn's abduction, Francine receives an anonymous note containing just five words: I KNOW WHERE SHE IS

When a young woman approaches her the next day claiming to have sent the letter Francine wants to dismiss it as a cruel, twisted joke.

But the stranger knows things that only Autumn would know.

It soon becomes clear that Francine must go to dark places in order to learn the truth about her child’s kidnapping.

She will discover that danger comes from unexpected sources. She will do things she never imagined herself capable of.

But will Francine get her daughter back – or is it too late?



Review:

I didn't know what to expect as I went into this book but whatever it was I was completely blown away by the whole thing.

Francine who is visibly struggling with the anniversary of her daughters abduction, its been nearly 10 years but then one night she gets a note under her door and at first she think it's an incredibly sick joke  being played on her because her name isn't listed anywhere, neither is her number, she's basically incognito so things like this don't happen. The following day whilst at work she notices someone lingering by her car and she confront them, only to find out her name is Lena, she sent the note and she knows where Autumn is.

And there Francine begins the riveting roller coaster ride as she follows her gut to reunite with her daughter dead or alive. Francine is completely human, flawed and utterly believable and true. Her ex Will however is a complete swine, he seems to have given up all hope on finding his daughter, he's married again and now there's a child on the way and when Francine approaches him about something to do with their long lost daughter he's quick to shoot her down, thinking there is something wrong with his ex but I can see where he's coming from with it all I mean some people lose hope after 10 years but Francine is a fighter and is full of hope.

As the book goes on the whole situation behind Autumns kidnapping unravels and we're shown the brutal and deprived world that had everything to do with it. I'm not even able to imagine how heart breaking and all losing a child in such a way would truly be but I can feel the determination in Francine throughout the book as she follows her mothers instinct and gut. It's a beautiful book, it shows the determination of a mother to find and protect her daughter even though she believes she failed years ago when her daughter was taken from her. It's a book showing strength and resilience but also corruption and the sick, unhuman acts on innocent people.

A gripping page turner, I was gripped from the very start and I was on a rollercoaster with Francine as she goes through all of these situations. My heart broke, mended but still cracked and so much more. If you like your thrillers then this is definitely one you should check out. It's a 5/5 from me and I'll be keeping my eye out of S.B Caves in the future because I'm sure his future work will be just as great at this debut.