I am not lost…

May 17, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: THE BLUEBELL INFORMANT by Nick R B Tingley

I received a copy of this book free of charge from the author in exchange for my honest review.

I like killers with calling cards. I like the concept of calling cards in general. (One of the video games I’m playing at present uses the concept, and it pleases me immensely.) So in reading the description of BLUEBELL INFORMANT, and seeing the flowers used as such, I was instantly intrigued. (I blame all the Criminal Minds I’ve watched over the years. My brain wants to profile everything, and the calling card just adds a new level of interest.)

As with so many thrillers I’ve read as of late, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I always get a little nervous about body counts (I blame Ethan Cross for that one) but if I wanted to make a judgment on stereotypes alone, given that the main detective is female, I didn’t expect a very high body count.

How amusing, I find out later, that I base that on assumptions.

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May 13, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: THE PERFECT STRANGER by Megan Miranda

Hey, surprise! A review on a Saturday! This was slated for Wednesday’s post, but when Laura asked me to help with the book cover reveal, I knew I couldn’t pass it up. And for once, my month is pretty packed with books, so I needed to get this out before next Wednesday! Besides, I’m excited to write this one.

Because it’s one that’s going to need a little explaining.

I was provided a copy of this book free of charge by NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

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May 10, 2017

BOOK COVER REVEAL: FRIEND ZONE by Laura Brown

So this is an author you’ve heard me talk about before, because she’s a friend of mine and I love her work! SO… when I got word that she needed some help spreading the news about her brand new book cover, I jumped at the chance! I’ll put the picture below the cut, and leave you with a fun factoid from the author herself:

Before you check out the amazing cover, there are two details I absolutely love; be on the lookout for them. One, the model’s hands appear to be in motion, almost as if he’s signing. Two, my amazing graphic artist managed to add a hearing aid, as Devon himself normally wears two.

I LOVE HER STUFF OKAY

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May 3, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: BLACK IRIS by Elliot Wake (writing as Leah Raeder)

I know all of you are probably familiar with my love of this author, particularly his book CAM GIRL, especially if you watch any of my YouTube videos. When BAD BOY came out in December, I was all set to by it instantly, but was told it might help to read BLACK IRIS first, as some of the characters overlapped, and it might spoil the book a bit.

Of course, I was more than willing to pick up another of Wake’s books, and dove in enthusiastically.

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April 26, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: THE DEAD ROOM by Stephanie Erickson

Hey! Been a while since we visited Stephanie Erickson and her writing, right? Man. Well, I wanted to have this and the next in the series (THE DEAD WORLD) read before the third book (ALIVE) came out, buuuuut I’m bad at time management or something and so it’s late. SORRY STEPHANIE.

In any event, I read this book…and I’m not sure what I was expecting from it, but I didn’t get it. And that’s TOTALLY okay.

THE DEAD ROOM starts out very post-apocalyptic. 322 years in the future. Everyone living on an island in the Northern Pacific, run by elders, all saved by some mystical dude named Bennett Ashby, back to more hunter-gatherer-meets-Hunger-Games style world. The islanders are told that this is all that is left of the world. They are the remaining vestiges of humanity, and all they need is here.

Needless to say, not everyone is convinced of this. What happened to everyone? Are you sure nothing is left? Ashley Wortham is Not Convinced that this is true, and that the elders are hiding something from them. She and her best friend Mason go off in search of answers, generally to the elders’ dismay, and what they find…they couldn’t have been prepared for. And as the blurb says, “What will they do when they discover the downfall of humanity lies within their own island, deep inside the dead room?”

Erickson has proven to be a fantastic writer in the past, so I had absolutely no concerns about the quality of the writing going in. The blurb is just vague enough that I have no clue what’s really going on, but much like Ashley, I’m positive that I need answers. And that feeling kept up through the entire book, particularly after what Ashley and Mason find out in the rest of the world.

This is a totally new take on the apocalypse, and one that I haven’t really seen before. (Pieces of it, amusingly, remind me of one of my own projects, but they’re different enough that it’s not concerning.) And given the tone of the entire novel up until the big reveal, the reveal totally came as a surprise to me. It felt utterly out of left field–but not in a bad way. Just in a “…oh right, this is…yeah.” kind of way. I love it. I’m utterly fascinated, and the book sets itself up very nicely for the next installment.

There are definitely some things I’m sad about. As with all things, we lose a few beloved characters (or at least, they’re beloved to me) as the plot goes on. None of the deaths felt unnecessary…though I’m not entirely sure why one of them happened, because it doesn’t make…a ton of sense, given everything that led up to it. (But spoilers, sweetie.) BUT! Really nicely told, a pretty quick read, and I’m definitely putting DEAD WORLD and ALIVE higher up on the TBR. I need to know what happens next.

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April 19, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: THE BEAST OF LONDON by L.D. Goffigan

I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.

I’m a sucker for a vampire story. (A good vampire story.) I’m fascinated about the good and evil component, I love seeing how everyone interprets it. We all come from a common point in the past, but it’s gone in so many different directions. It’s not often that I see someone going all the way back to the original to start peeking at the story again. A few years back, a friend from college wrote a musical rendition of Dracula called THE DEAD ENGLISH, and I loved it. It rekindled my fascination with Dracula and all things about it. There was so much more to the story–to the true, proper story of Dracula–that I’d forgotten, or hadn’t read. (I’m still not sure how much of the original book I’ve read.)

So when this book wandered into my life, how could I possibly pass up an opportunity to see one more imagining?

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April 12, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: I LOVE YOU TODAY by Marcia Gloster

I was provided an ARC of this book from the Story Plant in exchange for my honest review.

I’m always fascinated to see how authors view different parts of our society, and which pieces they choose to focus on for their work. So seeing a book from theĀ Mad Men era coming out, focusing on a woman who was bound and determined to make her way through a male-driven field, I was all in favor to see this kind of adventure.

Unfortunately, it didn’t quite deliver the way I was hoping.

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April 5, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: OFF THE PAGE by Jodi Picoult and Samantha van Leer

Originally, I hadn’t intended to review this book for the blog at all. Not because I thought it was going to be bad, or not worth the time and effort, but simply because I figured I would have said everything I wanted to about the books and the way they’re written after my review of the first book in the series, BETWEEN THE LINES.

Oh I was so very wrong. So very, very wrong.

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March 29, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: LOCK IN by John Scalzi

Since IĀ attended (or rather, will attend, as of the writing of this review) one of Scalzi’s book tour events on Friday the 24th (aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh) I figured it was probably a good idea to read at least something of his. Yeah, I’m a terrible SFF fan and up until now, I hadn’t read anything of John Scalzi’s. I’ve been having great fun following him on Twitter however (hi John) and I was more than happy to pick up a few of his books. I’d originally intended to pick up OLD MAN’S WAR since that’s the one I hear mentioned most often, but reading the description for LOCK IN was far too intriguing for me to pass up.

Besides, the concept reminds me a tiny bit of some of my own work.

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March 22, 2017

BOOK REVIEW: ASHBY HOLLER by Jamie Zakian

I was provided a copy of this book by the author at no cost, in exchange for my honest review.

It’s been a while since I read anything that primarily features LGBT characters. I’m not sure if that speaks to my choice in books or just how isolated my current collection is, but when Zakian reached out for a review, I had to jump at the chance. Now, to be fair, the last book I read that dealt with ladies who like other ladies was…less than stellar. So I was hoping for the best in this one.

It’s a definite step up. (And I know that sounds like a lukewarm compliment, but I don’t mean it to be! Honest!)

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