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Sci-Fi YA Audiobook Review: Future Threat by Elizabeth Briggs

Future Threat by Elizabeth Briggs (Future Shock #2)


audiocopy courtesy of Audible Studios

Synopsis from Goodreads
Six months ago Aether Corporation sent Elena, Adam, and three other recruits on a trip to the future where they brought back secret information--but not everyone made it back to the present alive. Now Elena's dealing with her survivor's guilt and trying to make her relationship with Adam work. All she knows for sure is that she's done with time travel and Aether Corporation.

But Aether's not done with her--or Adam, or fellow survivor Chris. The travelers on Aether's latest mission to the future have gone missing, and Elena and her friends are drafted into the rescue effort. They arrive in a future that's amazingly advanced, thanks to Aether Corporation's reverse-engineered technology. The mission has deadly consequences, though, and they return to the future to try to alter the course of events.

But the future is different yet again. Now every trip through time reveals new complications, and more lives lost--or never born. Elena and Adam must risk everything--including their relationship--to save their friends.

The second book in the New York Times bestselling Future Shock trilogy.
 


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

 8/10

* * *
Surprisingly, Elizabeth Briggs did not suffer from the dreaded second book syndrome. In fact, Future Threat is even better than Future Shock. It's pretty non-stop action, breathless and tense.

Contemporary Romance Early Review: Dating-ish by Penny Reid

Dating-ish by Penny Reid (Knitting in the City #6)


ecopy thanks to the author

Synopsis from Goodreads
There are three things you need to know about Marie Harris:
1) She’s fed up with online dating,
2) She’s so fed up, she’s willing to forego the annoyance and consider more creative alternatives, and
3) She knows how to knit.

After the most bizarre and irritating first date in the history of human kind, Marie is looking for an alternative to men. With the help of her friends, she quickly identifies a few possibilities:

Need a cuddle? Use a professional cuddler. Need affirmation? Get yourself a life coach. Need an orgasm? Try orgasm meditation! Why does she need the hassle of a romantic partner when she can meet all her needs with paid services?
But then her irritating date resurfaces. And he’s not at all the person she thought he was. And he suggests a different—and crazier—solution to her dilemma . . .
As everyone knows (or will soon come to realize), traditional relations between humans are a thing of the past. Robots are our future. And if robots are our future, then why do we need other people at all?


Release Date: May 16, 2017.

  Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository

 9.5/10

* * *
I want to start my review with this amazing bit of wisdom from Dan:

"You like this guy, you tell him flat out. You just lay what you want and everything that needs to be said. He'll always be in your mind, wrecking the possibility of things with other people, because your heart can't move on until it knows for sure a door is closed."

Friday Mini Reviews #105: Julie McElwain, Rainbow Rowell & Lindsay Buroker



A Murder in Time by Julie McElwain (Kendra Donovan #1)
bought
Synopsis from Goodreads
Beautiful and brilliant, Kendra Donovan is a rising star at the FBI. Yet her path to professional success hits a speed bump during a disastrous raid where half her team is murdered, a mole in the FBI is uncovered and she herself is severely wounded. As soon as she recovers, she goes rogue and travels to England to assassinate the man responsible for the deaths of her teammates.

While fleeing from an unexpected assassin herself, Kendra escapes into a stairwell that promises sanctuary but when she stumbles out again, she is in the same place - Aldrich Castle - but in a different time: 1815, to be exact.

Mistaken for a lady's maid hired to help with weekend guests, Kendra is forced to quickly adapt to the time period until she can figure out how she got there; and, more importantly, how to get back home. However, after the body of a girl is found on the extensive grounds of the county estate, she starts to feel there's some purpose to her bizarre circumstances. Stripped of her twenty-first century tools, Kendra must use her wits alone in order to unmask a cunning madman.
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
9/10
 So fascinating! If you like time-travel, kick-ass heroines and Diana Gabaldon's novel, then this one is for you! Kendra Donovan is a tough as nails FBI profiler who is ready to climb walls when she is transferred to Regency England and none of her skills are applied to female roles of the era. Then the murders start, and she realises that she does have a purpose here after all: to find the killer. A lightning-fast, gripping read, one of the highlights of the year for me.
* * *
Очень захватывающе! Если вам нравятся путешественники во времени, романы Дианы Гэбэльдон и крутосваренные героини, то вам сюда! Кендра Донован - специалист по профилям серийных убийц в ФБР. Когда она случайно проваливается во времени в Англию Регентства, она от отчаяния на стенку лезет, так как всё, что она знает, не входит в рамки гендерных ролей эпохи. Однако когда вокруг неё начинает происходить цепь убийств, она наконец понимает, что в это время попала не зря, и что её задача - найти и остановить опасного преступника. Прям от книги оторваться было невозможно, читалось на одном духу. Очень рекомендую!
 Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
bought on audio and kindle
Synopsis from Goodreads
From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & Park. A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan...

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving. Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words... And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?
 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
8/10
This was an extremely lovely book, especially on audio. A sweet coming-of-age story, a mostly blind to everything out of her comfort zone heroine, which leads to tragic and hilarious situations, and very interesting, sympathetic secondary characters. I think this would be a must read for fans of Harry Potter fandom and Penny Reid. I really enjoyed it!
* * *
Ну безумно милая книженция, дамы и господа, особенно в формате аудио. Болезненный процесс взросления, потери наивности детства, здесь очень хорошо чувствуется. Главная героиня вообще слепа ко всему, что происходит за пределами её комфортной зоны, что приводит к траикомическим ситуациям. А вторичные персонажи ну очень симпатичные и живые. Рекомендую фанатам фандома о Гарри Поттере и любителям Пенни Рид. Вам должно понравиться.

Star Nomad by Lindsay Buroker (Fallen Empire #1)

bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
They have her daughter. She will stop at nothing to get her back.

When system-wide civil war broke out, fighter pilot Captain Alisa Marchenko left her family and accepted a commission in the Alliance Army to battle the empire’s tyranny. Four years later, the empire has been toppled, but chaos and anarchy now rule the system. Alisa, after being injured in the final battle, is stranded on a dustball of a planet billions of miles from home. She learns that her husband died during the bombings, leaving their daughter on Perun, a planet that has become the last imperial stronghold.

Alisa must find a way to Perun, even if she has to steal a dilapidated ship from a junkyard overrun by murdering savages to do it. She’s ready for the challenge. She did not, however, count on finding an elite imperial cyborg soldier squatting in the ship and planning to use it for a mysterious mission of his own. Alisa can’t let him or anyone else stop her, or she'll never see her daughter again.


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

 7.5/10
I don't know what happened, peeps. I should have enjoyed it more but it just didn't do anything for me emotionally. The plot was good, the characters had interesting banter going on, but backstory felt very murky, and it just felt bland comparing to the vibrancy of Sara King's Outer Bounds or emotional warmth of Wayfarers by Becky Chambers.
* * *
Я не знаю, что случилось, ребята. Я вроде как должна была прочитать эту книгу с удовольствием, однако она меня совсем не зацепила. Интересный сюжет, хорошие перепалки между командой корабля, однако картина построения мира была мутной, и сама книга лично для меня была лишена яркости той же самой Сары Кинг или теплоты Беки Чэмберс.


Murder Mystery Review: The Awkward Squad by Sophie Henaff

The Awkward Squad by Sophie Henaff, Sam Gordon (Awkward Squad / Anne Capestan #1)


egalley thanks to MacLehose Press

Synopsis from Goodreads
Suspended from her job as a promising police officer for firing "one bullet too many", Anne Capestan is expecting the worst when she is summoned to H.Q. to learn her fate. Instead, she is surprised to be told that she is to head up a new police squad, working on solving old cold cases.

Though relived to still have a job, Capestan is not overjoyed by the prospect of her new role. Even less so when she meets her new team: a crowd of misfits, troublemakers and problem cases, none of whom are fit for purpose and yet none of whom can be fired.

But from this inauspicious start, investigating the cold cases throws up a number a number of strange mysteries for Capestan and her team: was the old lady murdered seven years ago really just the victim of a botched robbery? Who was behind the dead sailor discovered in the Seine with three gunshot wounds? And why does there seem to be a curious link with a ferry that was shipwrecked off the Florida coast many years previously?


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

8/10

* * *
 What a refreshing find! A French police procedural with snappy characters, multilayered narration and certain "je ne sais quoi"... *grins*

 It's got elements of comedy and tragedy, but they are so intermixed that it's a fairly light, cosy mystery type of read.

Historical Romance Review: A Lady's Code of Misconduct by Meredith Duran

A Lady's Code of Misconduct by Meredith Duran (Rules for the Reckless #5)


Egalley thanks to Pocket Books

Synopsis from Goodreads
A DEAL WITH THE DEVIL...
Trapped in the countryside, facing an unwanted marriage and the theft of her fortune, Jane Mason is done behaving nicely. To win her freedom, she’ll strike a deal with the most dangerous man she knows—a rising star in politics, whose dark good looks mask an even darker heart.

...NEVER GOES TO PLAN.
The bitter past has taught Crispin Burke to trust no one. He’ll gladly help a lovely young heiress, provided she pays a price. Yet when a single mistake shatters his life, it is Jane who holds the key to his salvation. And in a world that no longer makes sense, Crispin slowly realizes that she may be the only thing worth fighting for...


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

8/10

* * *
 It was one of my favourite tropes, peeps, - an antihero in love.

Both Jane, the heiress, and Crispin, the young and already ruthless politician, are more than they seem. Jane is forced to be quiet and mousy to avoid attention and a heavy hand of her uncle who is currently going through her inheritance, while she is trying to plot an escape.

Friday Mini Reviews #104: Selina Sak Chin Yoke,


The Woman Who Breathed Two Worlds by Selina Siak Chin Yoke (Malayan #1)

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads
Facing challenges in an increasingly colonial world, Chye Hoon, a rebellious young girl, must learn to embrace her mixed Malayan-Chinese identity as a Nyonya—and her destiny as a cook, rather than following her first dream of attending school like her brother.

Amidst the smells of chillies and garlic frying, Chye Hoon begins to appreciate the richness of her traditions, eventually marrying Wong Peng Choon, a Chinese man. Together, they have ten children. At last, she can pass on the stories she has heard—magical tales of men from the sea—and her warrior’s courage, along with her wonderful kueh (cakes).

But the cultural shift towards the West has begun. Chye Hoon finds herself afraid of losing the heritage she so prizes as her children move more and more into the modernising Western world.
 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
8/10
 A really lovely, rich cultural immersion in Malaysia on the brink of major changes. The main heroine's life begins in the country before the Great War and any modern developments, and ends in a very different environment. It's sentimental, a bit heart-breaking and with a lot of feeling. I'm not ashamed to admit I had tears in my eyes a few times. Recommended to everyone interested in the history of the region.
* * *
Замечательный, насыщенный культурными деталями, погружающий в атмосферу Малайзии роман, рассказывающий о жизни женщины в эпоху традиционализма, поднявшей свою семью через все сумбурные и радикальные перемены начала 20-го века. Очень интересно, грустно и колоритно. Аж слёзы стояли на глазах временами. Рекомендую, особенно тем, кому интересен регион.

Random Acts of Trust by Julia Kent (Random #2)

ecopy thanks to the author

Synopsis from Goodreads
Giving up is hard...but giving in is even harder.

When did my life become a demented episode from The Mindy Project?

Moving to Boston to begin grad school meant I was supposed to start a new life--not dig through a past I thought I'd left behind four years ago. But when I saw the poster for Random Acts of Crazy, all I could think about was the drummer, Sam Hinton, the boy I'd loved in high school and who disappeared with my heart.

Who knew I'd become the living version of Magic Mike?

Seeing Amy Smithson at my gig and watching her win a kiss from my bandmate, Liam, was a gut punch. Four years ago we squared off in a high school debate that had higher stakes than we ever imagined, and here I was...wanting what I'd walked away from. Are there too many secrets between us to allow her to trust me again?

And can I trust myself?
 
Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

 6.5/10
This was cute, but I am not a big fan of Sam and Amy. I found their interactions a bit forceful. However, Darla was awesome as usual. Tons of laughter in between drama. Recommended for a light, comforting & sassy read!
* * *
Довольно мило, однако я не большой фанат Сэма и Эйми. Мне их диалог показался натужным. Однако, Дарла как всегда всех затмевала. Смех сквозь слёзы в этой уютной комедии ошибок. Рекомендую, но с колебаниями.

Red Seas Under Red Skies by Scott Lynch (Gentleman Bastard #2)

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads
Thief and con-man extraordinaire, Locke Lamora, and the ever lethal Jean Tannen have fled their home city and the wreckage of their lives. But theersy can't run forever and when they stop they decide to head for the richest, and most difficult, target on the horizon. The city state of Tal Verarr. And the Sinspire.

The Sinspire is the ultimate gambling house. No-one has stolen so much as a single coin from it and lived. It's the sort of challenge Locke simply can't resist...

...but Locke's perfect crime is going to have to wait.

Someone else in Tal Verarr wants the Gentleman Bastards' expertise and is quite prepared to kill them to get it. Before long, Locke and Jean find themselves engaged in piracy. Fine work for thieves who don't know one end of a galley from another.
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
8.5/10
I might have been slightly prejudiced against this book after the amazeballs of The Lies of Locke Lamora. It's amazing in its own right if you love your Pirates of The Carribean and there are some intense layers upon layers of diabolical scheming, but there are also parts where whatever happens is very muted and rushed... and I am not a fan of "I can't be bothered to be specific anymore" plot twists. So, it's awesome and grand, but the first book is better. Recommended.
* * *
Я может быть настроена была немного против этой книги с самого начала после фантасмагории книги первой. Нет, она конечно хороша в своём праве и полна хитроумных схем, особенно если вы фанатеете от Пиратов Карибского Моря, однако ленивые моменты, когда сюжет убыстрялся и замутнялся в угоду писателю, меня в восторг не приводили. И всё-равно, классно! Рекомендую.

Contemporary Romance Review: Bombshell by C.D. Reiss

Bombshell by C.D. Reiss (Hollywood A-List #1)


Egalley courtesy of Montlake Romance

Synopsis from Goodreads
From New York Times bestselling author CD Reiss, a standalone romance about a nanny, a Hollywood star, and a love they never expected.

Hollywood bad boy Brad Sinclair always gets his way, whether it’s the role he wants or the bikini-clad model he has to have. But when a bombshell gets dropped in his lap in the form of a dimpled five-year-old from a forgotten relationship, he knows his life is about to change forever.

Cara DuMont isn’t exactly thrilled when she gets assigned to be the nanny for the latest box-office king. She has one rule: no celebrity fathers, especially single ones with devilish good looks and rock-hard abs.

But as soon as Cara meets Brad and his adorable little girl, she knows she’s in for a world of trouble. Because there’s something about the way Brad looks at her that makes her believe that some rules are meant to be broken…
 


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK

8.5/10

* * *
 I think out of all the novels in this particular setting from C.D. Reiss Bombshell is my favorite.

Partly because here two strong characters allowed themselves to open up and be vulnerable to each other, which was a heady experience for me as a reader.

May New Book Releases I'm Dying to Read!

So many awesome books this month! White Hot, Dating-Ish and Bombshell were amazing, and I'll post my reviews shortly. What about you? What are you dying to read?

Urban Fantasy Audiobook Review: Forged by Flames by Susan Illene

Forged by Flames b Susan Illene (Dragon's Breath #3)


audiocopy thanks to the author

Synopsis from Amazon
Ever since dragons invaded Earth, Bailey Monzac and other survivors have had to adjust to a new world order. But a new threat is emerging that could destroy everything they've been struggling to rebuild—for both man and beast. There's an artifact out there that can control dragons, and many would seek to possess it for dark purposes.

It's going to be up to Bailey, her dragon shape-shifter ally Aidan, and their friends to embark on a long and arduous quest to recover the relic before it falls into the wrong hands. Relationships within the group will be tested in incredible ways that could mean the difference between success and failure. For they must work together—forging the tightest bonds—if they wish to survive this journey.


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

7.5/10

* * *
Damn, this book has left me restless.

Forged by Flames is a classic quest which was a nice transition book after the previous story arc ended.
Bailey, Aidan, Conrad, Miles, Danae, and Aidan's uncle and sister are traveling together to different parts of the US to reassemble a magical orb which can control dragon shifters, dragon slayers, and magic users. They have to go through a few trials, and in the process learn important things about their history and mutual origins.

Historical MM Romance Review: An Unseen Attraction by K.J. Charles

An Unseen Attraction by K.J. Charles (Sins of the Cities #1)


Egalley thanks to Loveswept

Synopsis from Goodreads
A slow-burning romance and a chilling mystery bind two singular men in the suspenseful first book of a new Victorian series from K. J. Charles.

Lodging-house keeper Clem Talleyfer prefers a quiet life. He’s happy with his hobbies, his work—and especially with his lodger Rowley Green, who becomes a friend over their long fireside evenings together. If only neat, precise, irresistible Mr. Green were interested in more than friendship...

Rowley just wants to be left alone—at least until he meets Clem, with his odd, charming ways and his glorious eyes. Two quiet men, lodging in the same house, coming to an understanding... it could be perfect. Then the brutally murdered corpse of another lodger is dumped on their doorstep and their peaceful life is shattered.

Now Clem and Rowley find themselves caught up in a mystery, threatened on all sides by violent men, with a deadly London fog closing in on them. If they’re to see their way through, the pair must learn to share their secrets—and their hearts.


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK

7.5/10

* * *
K.J. Charles has a real knack for quiet, cozy period mysteries, and this book is not an exception.

The romance is low-key with two ordinary, quiet men who are forced to be heroes despite their deep fears and desires to avoid any scandal.

Friday Mini Reviews #103: Aleatha Romig, Joanna Cannon & Laurell K. Hamilton



Betrayal by Aleatha Romig (Infidelity #1)

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads
One week. No future. No past. No more.
Alexandria Collins has one week to live carefree—no ghosts of her past or pressures of her future haunting her. Reinventing herself as "Charli," she is knocked off her feet by a sexy, mysterious man who brings her pleasure like she never imagined. With her heart at stake, she forgets that decisions made in the dark of night reappear in the bright light of day.

"Some of my tastes are unique. They aren’t for everyone. I understand that.”

Lennox "Nox" Demetri is wealthy, confident, and decisive—he knows what he wants. From the first time he sees Charli at an exclusive resort, he knows he wants her. Although he is usually the one to make the rules, together they agree on one:

One week. No more.

When betrayal comes from those closest to Alexandria, she must decide how far she is willing to go to survive. Choices are not always easy, especially when they involve the heart, body, and soul. After all, Infidelity is a business, and some rules are meant to be broken.

"Is it really cheating if you're doing it to yourself?"

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Aleatha Romig comes a sexy, new dominant hero who knows what he wants, and a strong-willed heroine who has plans of her own. With classic Aleatha Romig twists, turns, deceptions, and devotions, this new epic dark romance will have readers swooning one minute and screaming the next. Have you been Aleatha'd?

BETRAYAL is a full-length novel and the first of five in the INFIDELITY series.
 

Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

7.5/10
I got it on audio, and I have to say I'm hooked.  It's a classic erotic romance with over the top responses, but Miss Romig is such a good writer, she makes it work. I am really intrigued and dying to know what happens next. Sexy, spicy and with a soul. Recommended.
* * *
Я загрузила эту книгу на аудио, и она меня неожиданно цепанула. Вот классический сценарий эротического романа, а автор талантливый, и получилось у неё всё очень интересно. И теперь меня уже раздирает любопытство, что будет дальше. Рекомендую.
The Trouble with Goats and Sheep by Joanna Cannon 

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads
Part coming-of-age story, part mystery, The Trouble with Goats and Sheep is a quirky and utterly charming debut about a community in need of absolution and two girls learning what it means to belong.

England, 1976. Mrs. Creasy is missing and the Avenue is alive with whispers. The neighbors blame her sudden disappearance on the heat wave, but ten-year-olds Grace and Tilly aren’t convinced. As the summer shimmers endlessly on, the girls decide to take matters into their own hands. Inspired by the local vicar, they go looking for God—they believe that if they find Him they might also find Mrs. Creasy and bring her home.

Spunky, spirited Grace and quiet, thoughtful Tilly go door to door in search of clues. The cul-de-sac starts to give up its secrets, and the amateur detectives uncover much more than ever imagined. As they try to make sense of what they’ve seen and heard, a complicated history of deception begins to emerge. Everyone on the Avenue has something to hide, a reason for not fitting in.

In the suffocating heat of the summer, the ability to guard these differences becomes impossible. Along with the parched lawns and the melting pavement, the lives of all the neighbors begin to unravel. What the girls don’t realize is that the lies told to conceal what happened one fateful day about a decade ago are the same ones Mrs. Creasy was beginning to peel back just before she disappeared.


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
 
8/10
Okay, I admit I bought this because I thought it will be a comedy about farm animals. Sue me. Instead, this is a quirky, lovely and slightly sad murder mystery from a child's POV in England in the 70s. Really well-written, full of small-minded bigots & naive innocence. A very enjoyable listen, absolutely recommended for something different.
* * *
Признаюсь, что книгу покупала по обложке, думая, что она будет комедией о домашних животных. Ага. Вместо этого получила старомодный, жутко милый и атмосферный детектив в субурбии Англии 70х гг. со взгляда маленьких девочек, окружённых напыщенными, недалёкими соседями. Характеры шикарные, прямо засасывает эта книга с её прекрасной рассказчицей. Очень советую если хочется чего-то другого.

Crimson Death by Laurell K. Hamilton (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter #25)

bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
In her twenty-fifth adventure, vampire hunter and necromancer Anita Blake learns that evil is in the eye of the beholder...

Anita has never seen Damian, her vampire servant, in such a state. The rising sun doesn’t usher in the peaceful death that he desperately needs. Instead, he’s being bombarded with violent nightmares and blood sweats.

And now, with Damian at his most vulnerable, Anita needs him the most. The vampire who created him, who subjected him to centuries of torture, might be losing control, allowing rogue vampires to run wild and break one of their kind’s few strict taboos.

Some say love is a great motivator, but hatred gets the job done, too. And when Anita joins forces with her friend Edward to stop the carnage, Damian will be at their side, even if it means traveling back to the land where all his nightmares spring from...a place that couldn’t be less welcoming to a vampire, an assassin, and a necromancer.

Ireland.
 


Audible US | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

1/10
OMG! This was worse than I expected after the last book which resurrected vintage Anita. No such luck here, peeps. I think Ms. Blake did not fire her gun even once, there is hardly any sex (!) and almost no plot. Basically, you can't win. She does a little bit of metaphysical mojo in a couple of fights. The rest, as you can guess, is endless talk between Anita and any man/woman in the vicinity about her love life ad nauseum. So much possibly good plot wasted, it's not even funny. She is in Europe for the first time, for God's sake! Edward is here! No, nope, nada. Total fail. So sad.
                                                                       * * *
Боже мой, это было ещё хуже, чем я себе представляла, особенно после того как предыдущая книга воскресила винтажную Аниту. В общем, подотрите слюни, здесь нет ни секса, ни боёв, ни развития сюжета. Книга заполнена описанием мужчин и женщин в её жизни и бесконечными выяснениями отношений, а в перерывах все кто Миз Блэйк встречает впервые распрашивает её о её любовной жизни. Ну, вашу мать! Оно если и было скандально-актуально 10 лет назад, то сейчас полигамия в романах встречается довольно часто и никого не удивляет. А потенциала пробухано... Она же впервые в Ирландии, впервые в Европе. Эдвард рядом! Там же можно было зафигачить такую конфетку. Ан-нет, хренушки. Не берите в руки это Г на палочке.

Murder Mystery Review: The Satanic Mechanic by Sally Andrew

The Satanic Mechanic by Sally Andrew (Tannie Maria Mystery #2)


Egalley thanks to Ecco

Synopsis from Goodreads
annie Maria writes the Love Advice and Recipe Column for the Klein Karoo Gazette: words of wisdom for the lovelorn, along with a recipe for something delicious that may help.

But Maria’s own problems resist her attempts to self-medicate, even with an amazing peanut-butter coffee chocolate cake. Her new relationship with Detective Henk Kannemeyer continues to be haunted by the memory of her abusive husband, and she decides to check out a PTSD counselling group run by a man they call the Satanic Mechanic.

But then someone is murdered—poisoned with mustard sauce—before her eyes, and Tannie Maria’s quest for healing takes a more investigative turn. Which means her intimate relationship with Henk is about to get professional. And more importantly, very complicated.

 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
 

8.5/10 

* * *
 I really love Sally Andrew's voice. It's simple, stripped of all the excess and cuts you to the core. Tannie Maria is a wonderful, warm, comforting character. Someone who loves helping people, a nurturer.

Friday Mini Reviews #102: Anthony Doerr, Erin Watt & David Weber


All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize
From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

Doerr’s “stunning sense of physical detail and gorgeous metaphors” (San Francisco Chronicle) are dazzling. Deftly interweaving the lives of Marie-Laure and Werner, he illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another. Ten years in the writing, a National Book Award finalist, All the Light We Cannot See is a magnificent, deeply moving novel from a writer “whose sentences never fail to thrill” (Los Angeles Times).
 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
 
8/10
Despite the topic of WWII this ended to be a meditative,  quiet listen with a lot of fascinating connections between the main characters. I was so glad one of my friends in Portugal recommended this book to me because I wouldn't have picked it up myself in a million years. It's sad, it's beautiful, it's scary and nerve-wracking. Superb writing, very much recommended.
* * *
Несмотря на тему Второй Мировой, книга эта оказалась медитативной, неспешной, тихой и невероятно интересной, показав как судьба связала таких далёких друг от друга главных героев. Я была так рада, что друг в Португалии мне её посоветовал, так как я бы никогда не взяла её в руки по своей инициативе. Она грустная, красивая, страшная и, читая её, очень нервничаешь. Очень рекомендую!


Paper Princess by Erin Watt (The Royals #1)

bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
From strip clubs and truck stops to southern coast mansions and prep schools, one girl tries to stay true to herself.

These Royals will ruin you…

Ella Harper is a survivor—a pragmatic optimist. She’s spent her whole life moving from town to town with her flighty mother, struggling to make ends meet and believing that someday she’ll climb out of the gutter. After her mother’s death, Ella is truly alone.

Until Callum Royal appears, plucking Ella out of poverty and tossing her into his posh mansion among his five sons who all hate her. Each Royal boy is more magnetic than the last, but none as captivating as Reed Royal, the boy who is determined to send her back to the slums she came from.

Reed doesn’t want her. He says she doesn’t belong with the Royals.

He might be right.

Wealth. Excess. Deception. It’s like nothing Ella has ever experienced, and if she’s going to survive her time in the Royal palace, she’ll need to learn to issue her own Royal decrees. 

Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

4/10
Honestly, what is wrong with these spoiled, angst-ridden poor rich brats? Oh, wait. I've answered my own question. This was like re-reading Tijan again, who, by the way, wrote in a much more cracktastic way. Who I couldn't understand was the main heroine and her unhinged responses. I kind of thought she was much more put together but apparently, she was hiding it until the very end. Read at your own peril. I am not continuing with this series.
* * *
Что за идиотские роблемы у бедных, неуравновешенных, испорченных богатых подростков? А, подождите. Я уже сама себе ответила. Как-то похоже на творчество Тижан, только у той всё гораздо круче написано. Главная героиня начала книгу собранно, а под конец превратилась в истеричку с чересчур преувеличенными эмоционально реакциями на ситуацию.. В общем, там капец. Я продолжать серию не собираюсь и вам не советую.

On Basilisk Station by David Weber (Honor Harrington #1)

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads

Honor Harrington in trouble: Having made him look the fool, she's been exiled to Basilisk Station in disgrace and set up for ruin by a superior who hates her. Her demoralized crew blames her for their ship's humiliating posting to an out-of-the-way picket station. The aborigines of the system's only habitable planet are smoking homicide-inducing hallucinogens. Parliament isn't sure it wants to keep the place; the major local industry is smuggling, the merchant cartels want her head; the star-conquering, so-called "Republic" of Haven is Up to Something; and Honor Harrington has a single, over-age light cruiser with an armament that doesn't work to police the entire star system. But the people out to get her have made one mistake. They've made her mad!
 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
 
6/10
I am not sold. The setting is fascinating (or the glimpses of it we get) but it's way too bogged down with the descriptions of space ships and what they can do. There is also zero character development. I don't know if I should continue with this series.
* * *
Что-то меня эта книга не убедила. Сам мир очень интересен (ну те крохи, что нам подсовывают), однако здесь слишком много деталей, описывающих космические корабли и что они могут делать, а вот развития персонажей нет. Не знаю, продолжать ли мне эту серию...

April New Book Releases I'm Dying to Read!


God, I don't want to read any of the new releases apart from these two (already read and reviewed The Billionaires)! What's wrong with me?!
What about you, peeps?
What do you fancy?

Erotic Romance Early Review: The Billionaires by Calista Fox

The Billionaires by Calista Fox (Lover's Triangle #1)


Egalley courtesy of St. Martin's Griffin

Synopsis from Goodreads
100 Shades of Sin...

In The Billionaires, Calista Fox delivers a sexy and sensuous friends-to-lovers tale with a delicious love triangle twist.

Jewel Catalano, Rogen Angelini, and Vin D'Angelo had been childhood best friends, spending every possible moment with one another. Rogen became her first love, the first one to show her what pleasure could be. Until a volatile feud erupted between their powerful California wine country families and she and Rogen were torn apart from each other. What she didn't expect was to find comfort and passion like she had never known in Vin's arms and bed. But when that too ended in disaster, Jewel moved to San Francisco to work for the Catalano empire. Years later, a series of daring acquisitions brings Jewel back to River Cross, the hometown where Rogen and Vin have recently returned as well. Jewel has the curves, the smarts, and the success to bring any man to his knees—especially the two men who remained best friends and still burn to possess her.

Mixing family business with erotic pleasure ignites a smoldering love triangle. But in order to pull off the bold deal that will build the trios’ own legacy and to stay in their heady, sensual paradise, they must discover what true love really is—or lose everything their hearts' desire, in The Billionaires by Calista Fox.
 


Release date: April 4th, 2017.

Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

7/10

* * *
 This was rather flowery, peeps, but also sweet and hot, so I'm of two minds about this book.

It's actually nice to have a working menage with a lighter atmosphere once in awhile, and this is exactly what you'll get here.

Friday Mini Reviews #101: Sierra Simone, J.D. Robb & Карина Демина


American Queen by Serra Simone (American Queen Trilogy #1)

bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
It starts with a stolen kiss under an English sky, and it ends with a walk down the aisle. It starts with the President sending his best friend to woo me on his behalf, and it ends with my heart split in two. It starts with buried secrets and dangerous desires…and ends with the three of us bound together with a hateful love sharper than any barbed wire.

My name is Greer Galloway, and I serve at the pleasure of the President of the United States.

This is the story of an American Queen.
Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
 8/10
Despite the predictability of the plot twists, I really enjoyed this book. It was cracktastic in a way Tiffany Reisz and C.D. Reiss books are. Very hot, very magnetic characters, great separation of the chapters going back & forth in time. You can see how talented the author is, and you bet your backside, I'll be grabbing book two in this series pretty soon. UPD: I am reading it right now! Recommended.
* * *
Несмотря на предсказуемый сюжет очень понравилось. По накалу страстей, по магнетичным персонажам напоминает Тиффани Райс и С.Д. Рейс. Классное разделение глав на прошлое и будущее. Видно, что очень талантливый автор, и я кстати уже читаю книгу вторую. Рекомендую!

Apprentice in Death by J.D. Robb (In Death #43)

bought

Synopsis from Goodreads

The shots came quickly, silently, and with deadly accuracy. Within seconds, three people lay dead at Central Park's ice skating rink. There's a sniper loose on the streets of New York City, and Lieutenant Eve Dallas is about to face one of the toughest and most unsettling cases of her career.
Eve knows that only a handful of people could have carried out such an audacious but professional hit. Even more disturbing: this expert in death has an accomplice. Someone is being trained in the science of killing - and they have a terrifying agenda of their own. With a city shaken to its core, Eve and her team are forced to hunt not one but two killers. Worse still - this talented young apprentice has developed an insatiable taste for murder...

Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

8.5/10
Another fast-paced, entertaining, easy read with a great villain. J.D. Robb writes the best sociopaths, you know? *grins* There are some cute moments like Bella's birthday and Eve's office redesign scattered here and there - normal, everyday life, which only sweeten the whole experience that otherwise, would have been more formulaic. Recommended.
* * *
Ещё одна, наполненная экшном, развлекательная, читающаяся очень быстро книга. Классный злодей, но Джей Ди Робб всегда умеет зафигачить персонажей-социопатов ещё ого-го как! *смеясь* Есть и очень милые моменты, как например, день рождения Беллы или редизайн кабинета Ив, что оживляло в остальном формулаичный сюжет. Как обычно, рекомендую!

Невеста by Карина Демина

bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
Война закончилась, но в мире нет мира. И Оден, бывший пленник королевы Мэб, получает свободу, а с ней - шанс умереть от рук разъяренной толпы, ведь железных псов ненавидят на землях лозы. Его спасение и единственная надежда выжить — Эйо, альва-полукровка. С ее помощью получится пройти по заповедным тропам, добраться до перевала и избавиться от метки королевы. Для Эйо, вынужденной скрываться от охотников за живым товаром, Оден - обуза. Но дорога, разделенная на двоих, многое меняет. И неудобный спутник становится близким человеком, без которого невозможно представить ни дом, ни саму жизнь.
Вот только многим союз альвы и железного пса покажется противоестественным.


ЛитМир

8.5/10
Ну вот, практически никогда не рецензирую книги на русском языке, а тут вышло, что подруга на Гудридс посоветовала мне почитать Невесту, так как я любительница творчества Грэйс Дрэйвен. И я конечно от неё оказалась в диком восторге! Превосходные герои, какая-то цепкая, немногословная и суровая любовь, в которой поступки кричат о чувствах, а не слова. Ну и естественно, богатый, интересный мир. Читалось на лету, очень рукомендую!
* * *
I almost never review books in Russian for obvious reasons, but my friend on Goodreads recommended me The Bride because I am a big fan of Grace Draven, and I loved it to bits! Awesome main characters, understated, quiet, harsh love of few words, which screams about its feelings with its deeds, not words, and of course, lush, gorgeous world-building. I am totally reading book two as soon as I have time. It was fabulous.
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In case of zombie apocalypse

Hey, guys! I feel like I should say this just in case :)
If you'd like to sponsor a fellow book addict who sometimes can't sleep at night worrying that she won't have enough books to read if internet goes down in the event of zombie apocalypse (I'm convinced it's one of the top five ways to go for human race) you can donate through Paypal to olivesandacorns at gmail dot com or buy a book through any of the links provided with my reviews which will send me a small percentage from the sale. All proceeds will go towards my enormous TBR. I will also shelter you on the remote farm in Portugal when zombie apocalypse starts provided you survive getting there. There will be books, yay?
Thank you! Love you all

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