Thursday, 31 December 2015

Before the Storm by Leslie Tentler

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Barclay Publicity and NetGalley.
Before the Storm
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Six years earlier, Trina Grissom disappeared, on the run for her life. Now living under an assumed identity—as Samantha Marsh—she still struggles with the dark secret she harbors and the fear she might one day be found. When she moves to the coastal town of Rarity Cove, South Carolina, to open a café, a handsome widower begins to chip away at the walls she’s built to protect herself.

Mark St. Clair lost his wife two years ago in a tragic accident. Head of the grand St. Clair resort, he distracts himself from his lingering grief by running the family business and caring for his troubled young daughter...until a beautiful restaurateur sets up shop in town. Before meeting Samantha, Mark was convinced he could never be drawn to another woman. But as his attraction to Samantha grows, the mystery surrounding her deepens.

As the two begin a hesitant courtship, double perils emerge. Someone from Samantha’s lurid past comes calling, threatening to expose her. And a powerful hurricane is forming in the Atlantic with the small beach town in its path. Trapped in the storm by the brutal man who wants vengeance on Samantha, she and Mark must fight for their lives.

Before the Storm by Leslie Tentler

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Before the Storm “When she closed her eyes, she was back in that Memphis apartment again – shivering, shards of cobalt glass around her, her hands stained with blood.”

This was an okay adult contemporary romance, but the pace was a little slow for me.

I felt quite sorry for Mark in the way he was struggling to raise his daughter after his wife’s death, but I found it a little bit harder to connect with Samantha.

The storyline in this had a bit of mystery as we didn’t know exactly what had happened to Samantha previously, as well as a contemporary romance storyline between Mark and Samantha. There were a couple of sex scenes, but nothing really explicit.

The ending to this was satisfying, and things were wrapped up pretty well.

6 out of 10

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Deadly Sweet Lies (The Dream War Saga #2) by Erica Cameron

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Spencer Hill Press and NetGalley.
Deadly Sweet Lies (The Dream War Saga, #2)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Nadette Lawson knows when you’re lying.

Every night for the past two years, the Balasura have visited her dreams, enticing her to enter their world. And every night she’s seen through their lies. Now, they’re tired of playing in the shadows and they begin to stalk her in the waking world. It’s no longer just an invitation; if Nadette doesn’t join them, they’ll take her family. Forever. She needs help, and the haven she’s seeking may be just out of reach.

Julian Teagan is a master of deception.

To survive, he has to convince the world his mother isn’t useless, that everything’s fine, otherwise he’ll lose what little he has left in this life. He knows the lying won’t be enough to keep him and his mother in the shadows, but it’s all he knows. The only light of truth is Orane, a Balasura who sees past Julian’s facade and challenges him to face the darkness.
Then Orane is killed, and Julian learns his mentor was far from innocent. The Balasura have hunted children like him for centuries, and their next target, Nadette is his one chance at finally being a part of something real. If Julian can just convince her to trust him…

Deadly Sweet Lies by Erica Cameron

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Deadly Sweet Lies (The Dream War Saga, #2) “I’ve always been able to tell when people are lying. My brain has been weird my whole life.”

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This was an okay sequel, and I liked catching up with the characters from book 1.

Nadette had a pretty useful ability in this book in knowing when people were telling lies, and Julian had the interesting ability that he was able to make people believe lies!

The storyline in this was once again about defeating the demons who plagued kids dreams, and specifically about getting Nadette away from the demons who wanted her. I did like that the characters from book 1 made a cameo, but the pace was a little bit on the slow side for me.
There was some romance, although it was a sweet girl-girl romance.

The ending to this was a little surprising, and we did get an interesting twist!

6 out of 10

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

What's Broken Between Us by Alexis Bass

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.
What's Broken Between Us
Blurb (From Goodreads):
Alexis Bass’s heartbreakingly beautiful second novel is a tale of love, loss, and learning to forgive.

Look to the left, look to the right. We’re all going to die. But someone has to do it first. So who’s it going to be?

Tragedy struck Amanda Tart’s town a year and a half ago when a sophomore girl was killed in a car accident on graduation night.
Amanda’s brother, Jonathan, was behind the wheel and too drunk to drive. He’s spent the past year in prison and has cut off all ties. But now Jonathan is coming home. Just as Amanda’s trying to figure out what that means for her family and herself, she’s paired up for a school project with Henry Crane—a former crush, and brother of Jonathan’s ex-girlfriend, who survived the crash with horrible injuries.

Everyone is still incredibly damaged by the events of that night. Can Amanda and Henry finally begin to heal what’s broken and find some peace?

What's Broken Between Us by Alexis Bass

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What's Broken Between Us(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)

“He didn’t even go to her funeral,” Henry says. “Even though he used to claim that he loved Grace as much as he loved his baby sister.”
“You know it was impossible for him to be at the funeral when he was –?”
“When he was the reason there was a funeral in the first place?”

I’m a little torn over this book, because some parts I liked, and some parts I didn’t, but the characters kind-of got to me, and made me really feel this book.

I felt a little sorry for Amanda, because continuing to live in the same town after your brother killed one girl and injured another whilst drunk driving, couldn’t have been easy. Amanda was no angel though, and whilst she didn’t kill anyone, she was exactly being faithful to her boyfriend either, and her family was a bit of a mess really.

“I’ve become the kind of girl who lies to her best and only real friend.”

Jonathan was also a mess. He didn’t come across as repentant over killing Grace, he came across as self-destructive. The way he behaved, the things he said made it seem like he was just trying to make things worse for himself rather than better, and I just wanted to knock some sense into him!

“He pours the whiskey until his cup is so full he’s going to have to slurp his first few sips without moving the cup.”

The storyline covered Jonathan coming home, and the choices he made once he was home. The way him being home affected everybody else, and the self-destructive behaviours he displayed! I feel so conflicted over this book though, because I found the story a bit slow and boring in places, but I felt like the characters really got to me at points!

“I killed Grace Marlamount, Sutton will never walk on her own again, and, here you all are, still giving me the benefit of the doubt.”

There was romance in this book, but there was also cheating. I’m not going to say more than that.

“What’s going to happen to you?”

The ending to this was also a little irritating, but it was more to do with the actions of the characters being irritating rather than the end to the story being irritating. Be prepared to feel a bit knocked about by this one!
7 out of 10

Monday, 28 December 2015

Dark Room (Red Eye) by Tom Becker

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Little Tiger Group and NetGalley.
Dark Room (Red Eye)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
When Darla and her feckless dad, Hopper, move to Saffron Hills, Darla hopes it'll be a new start for the both of them. But she stands no chance of fitting in with the image-obsessed in-crowd at her new school. Then one of her classmates is brutally killed when taking a photo of herself. A murder Darla herself predicted in a bloody vision. When more teens die in a similar fashion it appears that a serial killer is on the loose - the 'Selfie Slayer'. Darla alone is convinced that the murderer might not be flesh and blood...

Dark Room by Tom Becker

My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars

Dark Room (Red Eye)This book wasn’t scary, and it didn’t hold my attention at all. I didn’t really care what happened to the characters, and I just wanted this to finish. I have to admit that I didn’t guess that (highlight to view spoiler - Walter was now Annie after having had a sex change ) but even that didn’t really interest me.
Overall; not for me.

5 out of 10

Sunday, 27 December 2015

Sing Sweet Nightingale (The Dream War Saga #1) by Erica Cameron

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Spencer Hill Press and NetGalley.
Sing Sweet Nightingale (The Dream War Saga, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Seventeen-year-old Mariella hasn't said a word in four years, and it's not because she can't: it's because she won't. She has nothing to say because no one would believe there's a world she can only visit in her dreams. And no one would understand why Mariella promised her silence to Orane, the man who introduced her to this world.   Hudson is only eighteen, but he's survived a lot--including a run-in with creatures he calls the "dream demons", creatures he blames for the recent death of his four-year-old brother. Struggling to cope in the aftermath of this loss--and guided by signs even the practical Hudson can't ignore--he moves to a new town and comes face-to-face with the one thing he never thought he'd see: another victim of the demons.  Mariella and Hudson have both been chosen by demons from a world that exists within ours, a world where beauty and magic mask cruelty and greed. Hudson has seen the gruesome reality of these beings, but Mariella is still in their thrall. She's in love with her captor, Orane, and is convinced she doesn't need saving. It's up to Hudson to show her the truth about the demons before she's lost in their world forever.

Sing Sweet Nightingale by Erica Cameron

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Sing Sweet Nightingale (The Dream War Saga, #1) “Mariella’s not trapped by the demons; she’s thrilled by their hold on her.”

This was a good YA paranormal story, and I enjoyed it a lot more than I expected to!

Mariella was such a stubborn girl in this story. To go 4 years without speaking must take some serious willpower, yet she did it, and did it well! Hudson really needed some of that same stubbornness to try to save Mariella, so it was good that he also didn’t give up easily.

The storyline in this was about Mariella wanting to stay with her demon in ‘paradise’ forever, whilst Hudson and her friend K.T. tried to break the hold that the demon had over her. I found the first half of this book to be pretty un-put-down-able, and although the second half wasn’t quite as good, it was still enjoyable.
There was a little bit of romance in this, but it was mainly Mariella having feelings for her demon rather than anything else.

We did get a happy ending to this story, although we also got a slight cliff-hanger for the next book in the series.

7 out of 10

Saturday, 26 December 2015

Gathering Deep (Sweet Unrest) by Lisa Maxwell

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Flux and NetGalley.
Gathering Deep
Blurb (from Goodreads):
When Chloe Sabourin wakes in a dark, New Orleans cemetery with no memory of the previous days, she can hardly believe the story her friends tell her. They say Chloe was possessed by a witch named Thisbe, who had used the darkest magic to keep herself alive for over a century. They tell her that the witch is the one responsible for the unspeakable murders that nearly claimed the life of Chloe's friend, Lucy. Most unbelievable of all, they say that Thisbe is Chloe’s own mother. As she struggles with this devastating revelation and tries to rebuilt her life, Chloe wants nothing to do with the magic that corrupted her mother…especially since she feels drawn to it.

Now, a new series of ritualistic killings suggests that Thisbe is plotting again, and Chloe is drawn unwillingly back into the mystical underworld of the French Quarter. To stop Thisbe before she kills again, Chloe and her friends must learn what they can from the mysterious Mama Legba. But when her boyfriend Piers vanishes, Chloe will have to risk everything and embrace her own power to save the one person she has left… even if that means bringing down her mother.

Gathering Deep by Lisa Maxwell

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Gathering Deep
“There was no mistaking what we were seeing – a lifeless black rooster, hanging by its feet from the doorknob. Its blood had gone dark and thick where it dripped down from the missing head.”

This was an interesting sequel, and I was pleased with how things were wrapped up.

This book was told from the point of view of Chloe, who was possessed by her mother Thisbe in book 1. I felt quite sorry for Chloe as it seemed like her mother still wasn’t going to leave her alone, and the way that she couldn’t even go home was obviously difficult for her.

“Piers and Lucy and Mama Legba told me it was my Momma who killed my friend Emmaline. They told me my Momma tried to kill Lucy and her little brother, too. They told me she was evil, that she’d used the darkest sort of magic to keep herself alive for more than a hundred years. They told me that she’d possessed my body and used me, too.”

The storyline in this was about the gang trying to stop Thisbe as she continued to terrorise the town, and continued to commit murders, and the change in point of view was interesting.

The ending to this was pretty good, and I was glad with the way things were wrapped up at the end.

6 out of 10.

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Come to Me Recklessly (Closer to You #3) by A.L. Jackso

Sponsored post: I received a paper copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Little Brown Book Group.
Come to Me Recklessly (Closer to You)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
A novel of one woman's obsession: a man who's as passionate as he is elusive - and as tempting as he is trouble...from the acclaimed bestselling author of Lost to You and When We Collide

Love turned him off . . .

Christopher Moore gave up on the idea of 'the one' years ago. Now, his life is an endless string of parties and an even longer string of girls. Enjoying the perks with none of the emotional mess, he's convinced everyone that he's satisfied - everyone but himself.

Until she turned him on . . .

Samantha Schultz has moved on with her life. Finishing her student teaching and living with her boyfriend, she's deluded herself into believing she's content. But there is one boy she never forgot-her first love - and she keeps the memory of him locked up tight. She will never allow any man to break her the way Christopher did.

When Christopher's sister and her family move into a new neighborhood, Christopher is completely unprepared to find Samantha living at the end of the street. Memories and unspent desires send them on a collision course of sex, lies and lust. But when guilt and fear send Samantha running, Christopher will have to fight for what has always been his.

Come to Me Recklessly by A.L. Jackson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Come to Me Recklessly (Closer to You) "Promise me you'll never lie to me,"

This was a sexy adult contemporary romance, but boy did these guys make some mistakes!

Samantha obviously felt like Christopher had wronged her in this book, but it seemed clear that both Samantha and Christopher still cared about each other, even when they claimed not to. They really needed to work on their communication though.

The storyline in this was about Christopher and Samantha, their failed relationship, and them coming together again, and these guys really did make some mistakes! The pace in this was quite slow though, and there was some cheating which I know some people don’t like.

The ending to this was okay, but again, like in previous books, these couples don’t hang around on speeding their relationships forward.

6 out of 10

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

The Veil (The Fianna Trilogy #3) by Megan Chance

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Skyscape and NetGalley.
The Veil (The Fianna Trilogy, #3)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Great stones crack and split. Storms will tell and the world is changed...

Seventeen-year-old Grace has found the archdruid who can teach her to use her power as the veleda—the priestess prophesied to save Ireland. But nothing is as it should be. The archdruid is a dangerous fairy, and Grace can’t learn the spells, no matter how hard she tries. Something is wrong...but what?

Meanwhile, gentleman Patrick Devlin and warrior Diarmid Ua Duibhne both struggle with their love for Grace, their duty to their warring brotherhoods, and their support of Ireland. And New York City is in chaos with protests, immigrant gangs, and police crackdowns. The only hope for the future is the ancient ritual, just weeks away, in which Diarmid must take the life of the girl he loves.

Secrets, legends, and prophecies collide in an explosive finale that will save the world—or destroy it.

The Veil by Megan Chance

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Veil (The Fianna Trilogy, #3) “The veleda sees, she weighs, she chooses.”

This was an okay end to the series, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as the first book of the series.

Grace spent most of her time in Sidhe in this book, so we didn’t get much interaction between her and the other characters at all, which was a bit disappointing really.

The storyline in this was about Grace going missing, whilst everyone else wondered where she’d gone. The time in Sidhe felt like a bit of a waste of time though, and the whole book just dragged.

The ending was okay, and we did get a bit of a twist (although I expected it to be honest). We did get some deaths, and we got an ending to the love triangle, but I just didn’t enjoy this one as much as the first book in the series.

6 out of 10.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Wild Cat (Leopard People #8) by Christine Feehan

Sponsored post: I received a paper copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Little Brown Book Group.
Wild Cat (Leopard People)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
In the new Leopard novel by the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Cat’s Lair and Leopard’s Prey, passions explode like wildfire when a young woman’s feral instincts are ignited by a man who’s too dangerous not to desire…

A simple request for Siena Arnotto: deliver a gift to her grandfather’s friend. One look at Elijah Lospostos, hard-bodied and stripped to the waist, and Siena succumbs to a feline stirring she never felt before, and to Elijah’s reckless and pleasurable demands. But when that pulse-throbbing moment ends in the murder of an unexpected intruder, Elijah accuses the shaken and confused Siena of setting him up.

Then Siena discovers the truth of her Leopard heritage, of the secrets in her grandfather’s inner circle, and the sinister plot of revenge that has put her in jeopardy. When Siena’s grandfather is assassinated, she realizes the only man she can trust is Elijah. Now as her Leopard rises from within, Siena and Elijah share not only an animal instinct for survival—but a desire so raw and wild it may be the only thing that can save them.

Wild Cat by Christine Feehan

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Wild Cat (Leopard People) “Believe me, baby, you belong to me. I don’t give up what’s mine.”

This was a sexy paranormal romance, with a bit of excitement.

I felt quite sorry for Siena in this story, as the way Elijah threw her out of his house and the things he said to her were awful. I really didn’t blame her for hating him, and could understand why she didn’t want to let that behaviour go so easily.

The storyline in this had a bit of excitement with some deaths, plotting, illegal businesses, and even some fighting, and it was a lot more exciting than the previous book in the series!
There was obviously quite a bit of romance in this one too, and the sex scenes were pretty steamy, although they did get a bit repetitive by the end.

The ending to this was okay, and I hope that we’ll find out more about what happens to Siena and Elijah next in future books.

7 out of 10

Monday, 21 December 2015

Tarnished (Perfected #2) by Kate Jarvik Birch

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley.
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Freedom comes at a cost...

Ella was genetically engineered to be the perfect pet—graceful, demure...and kept. In a daring move, she escaped her captivity and took refuge in Canada. But while she can think and act as she pleases, the life of a liberated pet is just as confining as the Congressman’s gilded cage. Her escape triggered a backlash, and now no one's safe, least
of all the other pets. But she's trapped, unable to get back
to Penn—the boy she loves—or help the girls who need her.

Back in the United States, pets are turning up dead. With help from a very unexpected source, Ella slips deep into the dangerous black market, posing as a tarnished pet available to buy or sell. If she's lucky, she'll be able to rescue Penn and expose the truth about the breeding program. If she fails, Ella will pay not only with her life, but the lives
of everyone she's tried to save...

Tarnished by Kate Jarvik Birch

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

“They’re killing the pets.”

This was a good sequel, and the stakes rose even higher.

Ella really took charge in this book; even though she was still a bit naïve, and still didn’t come up with the best plans, she knew what she wanted and really went for it, even if it meant putting herself in danger to achieve what she wanted.

“I need to get back,” I said.

The storyline in this was about Ella trying to find Penn, and also about what was happening to pets in light of Ella’s escape. There were a couple of twists in the tale, and the stakes just went up and up. I did find the pace a little slow again, but the story was enjoyable.

“That sort of behaviour is toxic. It has to be extinguished the moment it’s spotted before it contaminates the group.”

The ending to this left us with a bit of a cliff-hanger, and it will be interesting to see what happens in book 3!

7 out of 10

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Come to Me Quietly (Closer to You #1) by A.L. Jackson

Come to Me Quietly (Closer to You, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Aleena Moore is content with her life. She has goals and dreams and an easy smile. She also has a secret she holds locked inside.

Jared Holt believes he doesn’t deserve to love or be loved. He destroys everything he touches. Haunted by the mistake that shattered his life, he’s fled from the memory of that pain.

Jared doesn’t know why he’s compelled to return, but finds himself drawn back to the place where it all began. The exact place where it ended. When he runs into his childhood best friend, Aleena’s older brother Christopher, he agrees to share Christopher and Aleena’s apartment while he looks for a place of his own.

Aleena is no longer the little girl Jared remembers from his past and evokes feelings in him he never wanted to feel again. Terrified of destroying her, he fights to keep her away. But her touch is something he can’t resist—the touch that sealed his fate.

Their pasts are intertwined and their futures uncertain. The only truths they know are the secrets they whisper in the night.

Come to Me Quietly by A.L. Jackson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Come to Me Quietly (Closer to You, #1)This was a NA contemporary romance with a bit of a tortured male lead.

Jared was in so much emotional pain in this book, it was clear he blamed himself for whatever accident had happened, and it was so sad that he felt like he didn’t deserve love.
Aly was what Jared needed whether he liked it or not, and they worked well together.

The storyline in this was mainly about the romance, with a bit of mystery over exactly what the accident was that Jared was so torn up over. The pace in this did feel quite slow though, and it seemed to take a long time for Jared and Aly to act on their feelings.

The ending to this was fairly happy, and I was glad with the way things turned out.

6.5 out of 10

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Nexis (Tricksters #1) by A.L. Davroe

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley.
Nexis (Tricksters, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
In the domed city of Evanescence, appearance is everything. A Natural Born amongst genetically-altered Aristocrats, all Ella ever wanted was to be like everyone else. Augmented, sparkling, and perfect. Then…the crash. Devastated by her father’s death and struggling with her new physical limitations, Ella is terrified to learn she is not just alone, but little more than a prisoner.

Her only escape is to lose herself in Nexis, the hugely popular virtual reality game her father created. In Nexis she meets Guster, a senior player who guides Ella through the strange and compelling new world she now inhabits. He offers Ella guidance, friendship…and something more. Something that allows her to forget about the “real” world, and makes her feel whole again.

But Nexis isn’t quite the game everyone thinks it is.

And it’s been waiting for Ella.

Nexis by A.L. Davroe

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Nexis (Tricksters, #1) “The Anansi child will catch them all by surprise. She will inherit the earth.”

This was an interesting sci-fi story, but the pace was a little slow for me.

Ella got a rough deal in this book, not only did she have to live with her father’s death, but she also had to learn to live with physical disabilities, and face the news that things that she had always believed, were not necessarily the truth.

The storyline in this had a few twists in it, but the pace was a little bit slow for me, and I wanted to know what was happening a lot faster than we did. The whole middle portion of the story seemed to drag, and although the twists did make things more interesting, the slow pace was a bit of a killer.
There was some romance, and there was a bit of a twist when it came to that too.

The ending to this was okay, but it did leave us with a bit of a cliff-hanger over what Ella will do next.

6 out of 10