Monday, October 16, 2017

Dirty Rotten Scoundrel (J.J. Graves Mystery #3) by Liliana Hart



Publication: November 5, 2013.
Publisher: Liliana Hart/7th Press.
Source: Purchased my own copy.

Can ghosts really talk?
J.J. Graves is about to find out when her past comes back to haunt her. But before she and Jack can resolve her past, they need to deal with his.
Six years ago Jack was left for dead during a SWAT raid he commanded. He never speaks of what happened that day, but he doesn't have a choice after someone starts murdering his men. According to the FBI, Jack is either next on the list, or he's the one behind it all.

Dirty Rotten Scoundrel picks up right where the last book, A Dirty Shame ended. J.J.’s father miraculously rose from the “dead” and wants something from J.J.. Life for J.J. had started getting back to normal for her. She just began a relationship with the town Sheriff, Jack and agreed to move in with him. That should have been enough. Now dealing with her father, investigating the death of a newly discovered body and finding out that Jack’s life could very well be in danger is more than enough to stress J.J. out. Life in Bloody Mary is anything but simple.

This was a good continuation to the series. I really enjoyed the mystery and trying to determine what was really going on and why. It wasn’t easy and I appreciated that. If you like your mysteries with a side of romance, then this would be up your alley. The romance scenes were fine, but it did feel like they were going at it like rabbits lol. It was a little overkill to me. But don’t get me wrong, I love J.J. and Jack together. They make a great couple. Even if Jack is a little hot-headed and I wonder if he can really be there for J.J. as she deals with her father, without him going into “Sheriff-mode”.

If you enjoyed the previous two books, then you would definitely want to pick this one up. And if you haven’t checked out the J.J. Graves Mystery Series, I think it’s worth taking a look at. The characters are interesting and Liliana Hart seems to know her way around a good mystery.


RATING: 3½ out of 5

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Sunday, October 8, 2017

The Blackbird Season by Kate Moretti Blog Tour!


Publication: September 26, 2017
Publisher: Atria Books
Source: Publisher.

Known for novels featuring “great pacing and true surprises” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) and “nerve-shattering suspense” (Heather Gudenkauf, New York Time bestselling author), New York Times bestselling author Kate Moretti’s latest is the story of a scandal-torn Pennsylvania town and the aftermath of a troubled girl gone missing.
“Where did they come from? Why did they fall? The question would be asked a thousand times…
Until, of course, more important question arose, at which time everyone promptly forgot that a thousand birds fell on the town of Mount Oanoke at all.”
In a quiet Pennsylvania town, a thousand dead starlings fall onto a high school baseball field, unleashing a horrifying and unexpected chain of events that will rock the close-knit community.
Beloved baseball coach and teacher Nate Winters and his wife, Alicia, are well respected throughout town. That is, until one of the many reporters investigating the bizarre bird phenomenon catches Nate embracing a wayward student, Lucia Hamm, in front of a sleazy motel. Lucia soon buoys the scandal by claiming that she and Nate are engaged in an affair, throwing the town into an uproar…and leaving Alicia to wonder if her husband has a second life.
And when Lucia suddenly disappears, the police only to have one suspect: Nate.
Nate’s coworker and sole supporter, Bridget Harris, Lucia’s creative writing teacher, is determined to prove his innocence. She has Lucia’s class journal, and while some of the entries appear particularly damning to Nate’s case, others just don’t add up. Bridget knows the key to Nate’s exoneration and the truth of Lucia’s disappearance lie within the walls of the school and in the pages of that journal.
Told from the alternating points of view of Alicia, Nate, Lucia, and Bridget, The Blackbird Season is a haunting, psychologically nuanced suspense, filled with Kate Moretti’s signature “chillingly satisfying” (Publishers Weekly) twists and turns.


Married couple, Nate and Alecia have a good life. Living in a small Pennsylvania town, Nate is a math teacher who also coaches basketball and Alecia takes care of their 5 year old autistic son. By all accounts, they have a seemingly perfect marriage. But things aren’t always as neat and tidy as they seem on the outside. And once the blackbirds fall to their death on the baseball field, things are never the same again.

This book made me feel like I was living in Mount Oanoke. The author did a really good job of capturing that small town feeling. And in a small town where everyone knows everyone, your reputation can be everything. Nate holds on to his reputation with pride. People respect and admire him. That is until he is accused of having an affair with Lucia, an 18 year old student, that soon goes missing afterwards.

But Nate wouldn’t do such a thing would he? And even if he did have an affair with Lucia, that doesn’t mean he hurt her….Right?

Told from multiple POV’s, The Blackbird Season will have you second guessing Nate’s self-proclaimed innocence and the townspeople around him.

The Blackbird Season is a compelling book that slowly pulls you in page after page and leaves you wanting more. It was a fun and immersive read. I liked how the mystery and suspense gradually builds, the more I delved into the story. I have been a fan of Kate Moretti, every since I read The Vanishing Year. She has such a way with words and unique characters/situations. I look forward to her next story.


RATING: 3 out of 5


THE BLACKBIRD SEASON by Kate Moretti
Atria Paperback | ISBN: 9781501118456| On sale: September 26, 2017 | 352 pages | $16.00
eBook: Atria | ISBN: 9781501118463| On sale: September 26, 2017 | 352 pages | $11.99


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Photo Credit: Pooja Dhar at PR Photography

Kate Moretti is the New York Times bestselling author of The Vanishing Year, Thought I Knew You, and Binds That Tie. She lives in eastern Pennsylvania with her husband and kids. Find out more at katemoretti.com.
FIND TAYLOR ONLINE:
Twitter: @KateMoretti1
Instagram: @katemoretti1
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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Final Girls by Riley Sager



Publication: July 11, 2017
Publisher: Dutton
Source: Purchased my own copy.

Ten years ago, college student Quincy Carpenter went on vacation with five friends and came back alone, the only survivor of a horror movie–scale massacre. In an instant, she became a member of a club no one wants to belong to—a group of similar survivors known in the press as the Final Girls. Lisa, who lost nine sorority sisters to a college dropout's knife; Sam, who went up against the Sack Man during her shift at the Nightlight Inn; and now Quincy, who ran bleeding through the woods to escape Pine Cottage and the man she refers to only as Him. The three girls are all attempting to put their nightmares behind them, and, with that, one another. Despite the media's attempts, they never meet.
Now, Quincy is doing well—maybe even great, thanks to her Xanax prescription. She has a caring almost-fiancé, Jeff; a popular baking blog; a beautiful apartment; and a therapeutic presence in Coop, the police officer who saved her life all those years ago. Her memory won’t even allow her to recall the events of that night; the past is in the past.
That is, until Lisa, the first Final Girl, is found dead in her bathtub, wrists slit, and Sam, the second, appears on Quincy's doorstep. Blowing through Quincy's life like a whirlwind, Sam seems intent on making Quincy relive the past, with increasingly dire consequences, all of which makes Quincy question why Sam is really seeking her out. And when new details about Lisa's death come to light, Quincy's life becomes a race against time as she tries to unravel Sam's truths from her lies, evade the police and hungry reporters, and, most crucially, remember what really happened at Pine Cottage, before what was started ten years ago is finished.

“Trust me...Would I ever lead you astray?”

Quincy is the third final girl. Though she likes to pretend that she's not. She likes to pretend that she's normal, but I'm not sure how anyone can be “normal” after they've gone through such a traumatic experience like Quincy has. Even if she can't remember all of the details.  Her seemingly perfect life is going almost according to plan. That is until Sam, the second final girl comes into her life.That’s when things begin to take an interesting turn for Quincy…

I liked how the the story flip flops between present day events and the events at Pine Cottage 10 years ago, where Quincy and her friends was attacked. Quincy is a fighter, she has a temper, and she would do whatever is necessary to survive. But is there a limit to what she would do?
Sam I did not like from the beginning. She seemed very manipulative and I felt like she had an agenda and Quincy was all too easy to be manipulated and pressured into doing things. Which annoyed me. I don’t want to say too much about the storyline and characters because it’s fun to discover things yourself as your reading.

However, I will say that this book is labeled in the mystery, thriller, suspense category and I felt like it fit the bill perfectly. This may even be one of the better mystery/thriller books that I have read so far this year. I ended up listening to the audiobook version of Final Girls. There were two female narrators for this book; Erin Bennett and Hillary Huber. They both did a good job of bringing the characters to life.  It did start off a little slow, but I kept with it until it picked up. I am so glad that I did. Around 75% into the storyline I thought I knew exactly where things were going and how everything was going to be wrapped up. It turns out the author pulled a fast one on me and I ended up knowing nothing! There were surprises and twists to the story that made it even more interesting than it already was. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I cannot wait to see what the author chooses to write next.





RATING: 4 out of 5



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Monday, August 7, 2017

Hunted by Meagan Spooner



Publication: March 14, 2017
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Purchased my own copy.

Beauty knows the Beast’s forest in her bones—and in her blood. Though she grew up with the city’s highest aristocrats, far from her father’s old lodge, she knows that the forest holds secrets and that her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering them.
So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters back to the outskirts of town, Yeva is secretly relieved. Out in the wilderness, there’s no pressure to make idle chatter with vapid baronessas…or to submit to marrying a wealthy gentleman. But Yeva’s father’s misfortune may have cost him his mind, and when he goes missing in the woods, Yeva sets her sights on one prey: the creature he’d been obsessively tracking just before his disappearance.
Deaf to her sisters’ protests, Yeva hunts this strange Beast back into his own territory—a cursed valley, a ruined castle, and a world of creatures that Yeva’s only heard about in fairy tales. A world that can bring her ruin or salvation. Who will survive: the Beauty, or the Beast?


Yeva (aka Beauty) and her family are wealthy and enjoying life among high society. Well everyone except for Yeva. She tires of the endless parties and vapid chatter with the ladies in their social circle. She longs for more.

When her merchant father loses their fortune, they are forced to leave the city. Her father is determined to get their fortune back and continues working. One day when he is out traveling, he never arrives back home. After weeks of not hearing any word from him,Yeva takes it upon herself to go search for him.  It is then that she finds herself captured by the Beast….

I was really hoping that I would have liked Hunted more than I did. Maybe I’ve read too many Beauty and the Beast retellings? I enjoyed the author’s writing style and the characters were interesting. I loved  the relationship between Yeva and her sisters. They were very close and cared deeply about each other. However, nothing really surprised me in this story and I didn’t really fall in love with the characters. If you happen to love all things Beauty and the Beast then I would recommend Hunted to you.



RATING: 3 out of 5



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Friday, August 4, 2017

Temporary by Sarina Bowen & Sarah Mayberry: Vote/Enter to Win an ARC!!!

Dear readers,

We're thrilled to bring you TEMPORARY, our first collaboration! It's the story of a hapless New York temp worker and the hot Aussie man who complicates her life. Coming September 12!
But we need your help! We have two blurbs for this book, and we can't make up our minds.

Which version is better? Your vote enters you to win a paperback ARC.

Thank you! Love,
Sarah & Sarina

Blurbs to vote on


Version A:
The most beautiful man she’s ever seen is the same one who can ruin everything.
The first time Grace Kerrington meets Callan Walker she's bowled over by his hotness - and his massive sense of entitlement. She can't believe she's going to have to deal with his smug commentary (in that sexy Australian accent) on a daily basis, all while trying to convince his ball-busting mother to give her a permanent job.
All Callan sees when he looks at Grace is yet another raptor-in-a-suit, wanting to climb the corporate ladder. Sure, she’s sexy, but he has bigger cattle to wrangle - like ensuring his recently deceased uncle’s final wishes are honored.
Grace needs this job--she’s all that stands between her little sister and social services. But Callan is a master player - and a master flirt. She was never supposed to succumb to his charm. But there’s a fine line between locking horns and locking other body parts.
She cannot fall for him. The game he’s playing with his estranged family is dangerous and dirty. Any idiot can see what’s happening between them can only ever be temporary. But Grace’s heart didn’t get the memo…
Warning: contains a hot Aussie who makes even ordinary words sound sexy, a crotch-obsessed poodle, weird Australian cookies, and one fabulous Chanel suit.



Version B:
The first time I lay eyes on Callan Walker, I know he’ll be trouble. With his smug grin, hot Aussie accent and thousand dollar shoes, he’s just the kind of rich guy who always gets what he wants.
And he wants two things: a night of sin, and my cooperation as he outmaneuvers his powerful mother to take control of his uncle’s estate.
I can’t afford either one. I’m the only thing standing between my little sister and the foster care system. He may have money and charm on his side, but I have something even more powerful -- pure desperation. This temp job at his mother’s company can become a full time job for me. It has to.
But when Callan’s eyes rake over my body, sometimes I forget my obligations. His piercing gaze finds the fun, optimistic girl I used to be and not the tired person I’ve become.

And it works--if only for a moment. Our night together was a mistake. I can't afford to get sucked into his high-powered family’s treachery. But the closer I get to Callan, the more layers I find beneath those expensive clothes. Though I can’t forget this is temporary. He’s temporary. I have too much to lose.
Too bad my foolish heart didn’t get the memo...



VOTE HERE
Sarina Social
http://www.sarinabowen.com/
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Sarah Social
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https://twitter.com/MayberrySarah
https://www.facebook.com/SarahMayberryAuthor

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