Tag Archives: Review

Amelia Unabridged: A Novel by Ashley Schumacher – My Review

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Title: Amelia Unabridged: A Novel

Author: Ashley Schumacher

Release Date: February 16th 2021

Genre: Young Adult

Sparks fly between two teens as they grapple with grief, love, and the future in this unforgettable debut novel sure to entice fans of Jandy Nelson and Jennifer E. Smith

Eighteen-year-old Amelia Griffin is obsessed with the famous Orman Chronicles, written by the young and reclusive prodigy N. E. Endsley. They’re the books that brought her and her best friend Jenna together after Amelia’s father left and her family imploded. So when Amelia and Jenna get the opportunity to attend a book festival with Endsley in attendance, Amelia is ecstatic. It’s the perfect way to start off their last summer before college.

In a heartbeat, everything goes horribly wrong. When Jenna gets a chance to meet the author and Amelia doesn’t, the two have a blowout fight like they’ve never experienced. And before Amelia has a chance to mend things, Jenna is killed in a freak car accident. Grief-stricken, and without her best friend to guide her, Amelia questions everything she had planned for the future.

When a mysterious, rare edition of the Orman Chronicles arrives, Amelia is convinced that it somehow came from Jenna. Tracking the book to an obscure but enchanting bookstore in Michigan, Amelia is shocked to find herself face-to-face with the enigmatic and handsome N. E. Endsley himself, the reason for Amelia’s and Jenna’s fight and perhaps the clue to what Jenna wanted to tell her all along.

Ashley Schumacher’s devastating and beautiful debut, Amelia Unabridged, is about finding hope and strength within yourself, and maybe, just maybe, falling in love while you do it.

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This is a touching story about two people dealing with their grief and finding the calm after the storm. Amelia is dealing with the loss of her best friend. They had plans. Their futures planned and it’s all gone in an instant. A mysterious package is delivered to Amelia and she sets off to find out the reason for it and finds more than she bargained for. 

This was an emotional story. Losing a loved one isn’t easy. There are many feelings and emotions to process. I loved the story telling style and the story is very well written. I found myself wanting to take a trip and find this amazing bookstore! The characters were great and really made the story pop. My heart went out to Amelia and N.E. This book got me right in my feels! 

This is a wonderful read. A fabulous debut for this author! I enjoyed both the story and her writing. I can’t wait to read more from her. I highly recommend this book! Add it your TBR today! I give this 4 stars. 

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


The Bad Muslim Discount: A Novel by Syed M. Masood – My Review

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Title: The Bad Muslim Discount: A Novel

Author: Syed M. Masood

Release Date: February 2nd 2021

Genre: Historical Literary Fiction

“Masood’s novel presents a stereoscopic, three-dimensional view of contemporary Muslim America: the way historical conflict in the Middle East lingers in individual lives, the way gossip travels in a close-knit immigrant community.” The New York Times Book Review

Following two families from Pakistan and Iraq in the 1990s to San Francisco in 2016, The Bad Muslim Discount is an inclusive, comic novel about Muslim immigrants finding their way in modern America.

It is 1995, and Anvar Faris is a restless, rebellious, and sharp-tongued boy doing his best to grow up in Karachi, Pakistan. As fundamentalism takes root within the social order and the zealots next door attempt to make Islam great again, his family decides, not quite unanimously, to start life over in California. Ironically, Anvar’s deeply devout mother and his model-Muslim brother adjust easily to life in America, while his fun-loving father can’t find anyone he relates to. For his part, Anvar fully commits to being a bad Muslim.

At the same time, thousands of miles away, Safwa, a young girl living in war-torn Baghdad with her grief-stricken, conservative father will find a very different and far more dangerous path to America. When Anvar and Safwa’s worlds collide as two remarkable, strong-willed adults, their contradictory, intertwined fates will rock their community, and families, to their core.

The Bad Muslim Discount is an irreverent, poignant, and often hysterically funny debut novel by an amazing new voice. With deep insight, warmth, and an irreverent sense of humor, Syed M. Masood examines universal questions of identity, faith (or lack thereof), and belonging through the lens of Muslim Americans.

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When I read the synopsis for the book, it piqued my interest. This is definitely a genre I don’t typically read but I wanted to give it a try. The beginning is slow but picks up the pace after awhile. It was both interesting and heart wrenching to read about each of their journeys. The story telling is great and the characters are as well. Not sure how I felt about Anvar but I did find his humor entertaining throughout most of the story. Safwa was a favorite A survivor for sure. Anvar’s father is a hoot! 

I realize there are mixed reviews on this book. I went into this book expecting a good story and  that’s what I got. I don’t believe that all Muslims are like the ones portrayed in this book. I DO believe there are people in every race and or religion that question why things are the way they are. I myself did that with my own upbringing. That being said, I truly enjoyed this book. It’s well written and I loved the different cultures that were woven in. I would recommend this book for anyone wanting to read outside of their comfort zone. I give this 4 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Eternally Yours: A Vampire Paranormal Romance by Harper A. Brooks & Olivia Boothe – My Review

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Title: Eternally Yours: A Vampire Paranormal Romance

Author: Harper A. Brooks & Olivia Boothe

Release Date: February 16th 2021

Genre: Paranormal Romance

She wasn’t looking for love. He gave her forever…

After being attacked by a wolf-like creature and left for dead, Loren Stone wakes in the house of a mysterious and sexy stranger. Something within her has changed. Her veins crave human blood. But it’s another type of hunger she finds herself fighting to control… her unrelenting need for Nicholas Guerra. She should hate the vampire who took everything she loved from her, yet is thrust into a battle against her own burning desire for him.

After centuries of being groomed to be the next vampire leader, Nicholas turned his back on his family to live among the humans. The last thing he expected was for his immortal life to collide with that of a mortal’s. Then… he watched Loren get attacked by the beast sent for him. Unwilling to let her die, he’s forced to sire her. However Nicholas never expected to fall in love, and now he aches for the one woman he’s forbidden to have.

From USA Today Bestselling Author Harper A. Brooks & Romance Author Olivia Boothe, comes a new sizzling paranormal romance that will leave you thirsting for more.

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Harper A. Brooks and Olivia Boothe wrote a book together? YES!!

This book is a perfect mix of paranormal, action, and steamy. From that first page, I was hooked. Loren’s life is changed after trying to save a life. 

Let’s get into these characters. Loren is pretty awesome. She reacts like I would expect someone to after their world was turned upside down. Loren is smart and tough. Did I also mention feisty? I loved the twist they gave her. Ah Nicholas, the sexy as sin vampire who struggles between doing the right thing and succumbing to his instincts. I loved the push and pull between Loren and Nicholas. One of my favorite characters is Catherine! She is a total bad boss lady! 

The story is fantastic. I devoured it in one sitting! It had everything I wanted in a story. Huge fan of the story telling and writing. Harper and Olivia work well together. I will wait not so patiently for another fabulous read by these two. A guilty pleasure read that will leave you wanting more! I give it 5 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Dark Horses: A Novel by Susan Mihalic – My Review

Title: Dark Horses: A Novel

Author: Susan Mihalic

Release Date: February 16th 2021

Genre: Psychological

A darkly gripping debut novel about a teenage girl’s fierce struggle to reclaim her life from her abusive father.

Fifteen-year-old equestrian prodigy Roan Montgomery has only ever known two worlds: inside the riding arena, and outside of it. Both, for as long as she can remember, have been ruled by her father, who demands strict obedience in all areas of her life. The warped power dynamic of coach and rider extends far beyond the stables, and Roan’s relationship with her father has long been inappropriate. She has been able to compartmentalize that dark aspect of her life, ruthlessly focusing on her ambitions as a rider heading for the Olympics, just as her father had done. However, her developing relationship with Will Howard, a boy her own age, broadens the scope of her vision.

At the intersection of a commercial page-turner and urgent survivor story, Dark Horses takes the searing themes of abuse and resilience in Gabriel Tallent’s My Absolute Darling and applies the compelling exploration of female strength in Room by Emma Donoghue. In much the same way that V.C. Andrews’s Flowers in the Attic transfixed a generation of readers, Susan Mihalic’s debut is set to a steady beat that will keep you turning the pages.

Dark Horse is one of the reads that feels like a punch to your gut but in a good way. There’s a lot of emotions being felt. They range from sorrow to anger and it sort of just stays there. I felt for Roan. That sense of hopelessness she was feeling, transferred over to me and I wanted to jump into the book and save her. I wanted more for her. This may be a hard read for some readers. It has triggers and I say proceed with caution. Roan’s story a hauntingly beautiful. The characters were well written. Some I loved and some I wanted to choke. A twist and an ending I didn’t see coming. I was not disappointed.

This is an emotional and dark read. It deals with abusive and that is not something that’s easy to read about. The author did a wonderful job on the story telling. Her writing is brilliant and I look forward to reading more books by her. I give this 5 stars. 

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


The Genome Odyssey: Medical Mysteries and the Incredible Quest to Solve Them by Euan A. Ashley – My Review

Title: The Genome Odyssey: Medical Mysteries and the Incredible Quest to Solve Them

Author: Euan A. Ashley

Release Date: February 23rd 2021

Genre: Genetics

In The Genome Odyssey, Dr. Euan Ashley, Stanford professor of medicine and genetics, brings the breakthroughs of precision medicine to vivid life through the real diagnostic journeys of his patients and the tireless efforts of his fellow doctors and scientists as they hunt to prevent, predict, and beat disease.

Since the Human Genome Project was completed in 2003, the price of genome sequencing has dropped at a staggering rate. It’s as if the price of a Ferrari went from $350,000 to a mere forty cents. Through breakthroughs made by Dr. Ashley’s team at Stanford and other dedicated groups around the world, analyzing the human genome has decreased from a heroic multibillion dollar effort to a single clinical test costing less than $1,000.

For the first time we have within our grasp the ability to predict our genetic future, to diagnose and prevent disease before it begins, and to decode what it really means to be human.

In The Genome Odyssey, Dr. Ashley details the medicine behind genome sequencing with clarity and accessibility. More than that, with passion for his subject and compassion for his patients, he introduces readers to the dynamic group of researchers and doctor detectives who hunt for answers, and to the pioneering patients who open up their lives to the medical community during their search for diagnoses and cures.

He describes how he led the team that was the first to analyze and interpret a complete human genome, how they broke genome speed records to diagnose and treat a newborn baby girl whose heart stopped five times on the first day of her life, and how they found a boy with tumors growing inside his heart and traced the cause to a missing piece of his genome.

These patients inspire Dr. Ashley and his team as they work to expand the boundaries of our medical capabilities and to envision a future where genome sequencing is available for all, where medicine can be tailored to treat specific diseases and to decode pathogens like viruses at the genomic level, and where our medical system as we know it has been completely revolutionized.

I will start off by saying, this isn’t my normal kind of read. After reading the synopsis, I was intrigued and wanted to read more. It was interesting to read about all the advances in that field when it came to genome testing. Some parts were hard to follow because of medical phrases. 

As a whole, this is an interesting and informative read. I would recommend this to anyone curious about genome testing or wanting to read something different. I give this 3 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Rose Bound: The Rose and King series Book 1 by J.J. Marshall & J.R. Walden – My Review

Title: Rose Bound: The Rose and King series Book 1

Author: J.J. Marshall & J.R. Walden

Release Date: February 14th 2021

Genre: Fantasy, Romance

Ousted for being a human sympathizer, Prince Gavin has found himself in the belly of the Underground, a world where ghouls rule and werewolves fight to the death.

After learning of his parent’s murder, Gavin is called upon to endure the Rose Bound ceremony and claim his covens throne with a wife.

Forces are rallying against him, some closer to home than he anticipates. Finding a murderer, leading a coup and himself, proves to be a journey that will change his kingdom forever.

But, when Gavin’s soulmate goes missing, none of that matters. Nothing will stand in his way to find her, not even his own demons.

Brilliant! Enchanting! Delightfully sinful!

Marshall and Walden dazzle readers with their deliciously dark tale of curses, revenge and loyalty. It will have you craving more!

This book was love at first sight. Immediately I was entranced by the story and the characters. The story telling is both beautiful and haunting. Between the steamy scenes and the action, I was in reader heaven! I loved how this story evoked so many emotions from me. Sadly, the ending came much too soon. Book hangover central was my next destination. 

Marshall and Walden make a fabulous team. A wonderful debut for Walden. If you’re a fan of dark fantasy and paranormal, this book is for YOU! Add to your TBR today. You won’t be disappointed. I give this 5 stars. 


Blood and Magic (Blood & Darkness Book 1) by Melissa Sercia – My Review

Title: Blood and Magic (Blood & Darkness Book 1)

Author: Melissa Sercia

Release Date: September 18th 2018

Genre: Fantasy

“Thrilling suspense and strong characters ensnare the reader right from the start in this exciting urban fantasy” from the author of Flesh and Bone (InD’tale).

With supernatural powers and an insatiable need for blood, her existence is cursed . . .  

When Gray awakens from a three-year spell-induced coma, she not only discovers her lover as the one responsible, but that he has joined with a dangerous organization, the Consilium, to help them create a new breed of hybrid demons. Humans and Witches are being taken against their will, and fear is growing throughout the covens.

Gray never had a choice—forced to become a monster, the Dhampir. Yet after four hundred years, she still yearns for her humanity, like a long-lost echo from another life. She cannot allow the Consilium to do this to anyone else.

With a renewed lust for vengeance, and a target on her back, Gray must use the one thing she swore never to in order to stop them—blood magic. Armed with a magical pirate ship, an immortal monk, and a flower plucked from the Underworld, Gray will stop at nothing to start a war. Yet in her quest to track down her enemies, she uncovers a dark family secret that threatens to destroy the last shred of humanity she has left.

I was not ready for all the awesomeness this book was about to bring me! This book sinks it’s claws into you and doesn’t let go. I was totally ok with it. Right from the beginning, you’re off on an adventure. One filled with revenge and….ok mainly revenge. Vampires, witches, and paranormals oh my! This story had my heart racing. I couldn’t put it down. I needed to know what was coming next. I love the mythology the author added to the story, along with her twists on some paranormal creatures. The story is well written as well as the characters. Some twists you don’t see coming and an ending that will have you shook. 

This is a fantastic read! It’s one of those unputdownable books that stays with you long after you’ve finished with it….I often think of Gray. I need book two like NOW! I can already tell this is going to be a favorite series. I give this 5 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Angels in the Mist (The Z-Tech Chronicles Book 1) by Ryan Southwick – My Review

Title: Angels in the Mist (The Z-Tech Chronicles Book 1)

Author: Ryan Southwick

Release Date: June 16th 2020

Genre: LGBTQ, Science Fiction

An ancient, powerful evil is loose in San Francisco. The heart of Silicon Valley must fight back the only way they know how — with compassion, unwavering determination, and, of course, super-technology.

Anne Perrin is resigned to a life driven by an adolescent trauma: a strict routine, no socializing (outside of the safety of her waitressing job), and no romantic relationships. When her cautious lifestyle lets the perfect partner slip through her fingers, Anne vows she won’t let it happen again and ventures into San Francisco to find happiness.

Her first night out in a decade becomes a nightmare when her date turns on her with sadistic intent. But his nefarious plans for Anne are unexpectedly interrupted by a mysterious savior. Valiant, smart, compassionate … Charlie is exactly the partner Anne has been looking for. And best of all, he likes her too.

Things go well between her and Charlie until an assailant with unexpected strength plunges Anne into a world she didn’t know existed — nor could have imagined — where super-science and an eclectic group of extraordinary individuals may be the solution to Anne’s lifelong loneliness … and humanity’s only hope against an ancient threat.

You’ve never read a story like this! 

You meet Anne. She suffers from PTSD from something that happened in her past. She’s tired of living her life this way and decides to go out one night. That night will change her life forever.

I was not expecting to devour this book the way I did. It’s a mix of science fiction and paranormal. The we also have some tech and action. The author did an awesome job of bringing it all together. He even managed to throw in a love story of sorts. Not your average for sure and I was digging it. Very unique characters! LOVED Zima! I enjoyed the humor and banter between everyone. I appreciate that the techy part was written in a way I could both understand and picture as I was reading. Thank you Mr. Southwick!

As a whole, this book is entertaining. It’s different with very unique characters. If you’re a fan of sci-fi and paranormal, I highly suggest you taking a chance on this book! Add to your TBR! This is a new to me author and I really enjoyed his style of storytelling. I look forward to reading more by him. I give this 5 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Temporal Gambit by Larry A. Brown – My Review

Title: Temporal Gambit

Author: Larry A. Brown

Release Date: August 13th 2020

Genre: Science Fiction, Time Travel

Playing with Time can have dangerous consequences.

Martin joined the secret Chronos Project to research some of history’s intriguing mysteries. At first, his journeys through time go smoothly. Then something goes wrong.

When an alien race tampers with earth history, their interference ripples through time. Martin no longer recognizes his present. He must travel to the ancient past to save his planet. But he finds himself playing a game without rules.

Can Martin counter his opponents’ moves before they eliminate the world he knows?

If you like time travel and alternate reality adventures, you’ll enjoy Larry A. Brown’s Temporal Gambit. To find out who wins, get your copy today!

Buckle up because you’re about to go on one wild ride!

Right from the start, you’re thrown into one heck of an adventure! Time travel, enough said. It was fun to see where in the past Martin would end up.There are many twists and turns that added to the thrill. It was really cool to see Martin think on the fly and connect the changes to the past and fix what needed to. From the characters to the story, everything was well written and exciting. This is a new to me author and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoy this book! 

If you love adventure and history, this book is for YOU! The author’s storytelling style has gained Mr. Brown a new fan. I look forward to reading more from this author. The story and characters will engage you. I highly recommend this book. You won’t soon forget the journey it will take you on. I give this 5 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Spoils of the Dead (Liam Campbell Book 5) by Dana Stabenow – My Review

Title: Spoils of the Dead (Liam Campbell Book 5)

Author: Dana Stabenow

Release Date: February 4th 2021

Genre: Police Procedures

Newenham is an ice-bound bush town with a six-bed jail, a busted ATM and a saloon that does double-duty as a courtroom. It’s a wide-enough patch to warrant a state police presence, though, and Trooper Liam Campbell is it. Campbell has been exiled from Anchorage to Newenham in disgrace, busted down from sergeant to trooper in the aftermath of a mistake that cost a family of five their lives, to spend some time in the wilderness. Campbell didn’t expect the job to be simple and it hasn’t. From the (literally) cutthroat business of commercial fishing, to the paranoid misanthropy of the back-country prospector, to drug dealers, serial killers, and caches of forgotten war gold, he has had his hands full. Now he has a dead archaeologist, murdered at their own dig site, who claimed to be on the verge of a momentous discovery. Fans of the icy frontier, of mystery tinged with a frisson of romance, of laconic lawmen with good intentions, of tai chi and small aircraft piloting take note: Liam Campbell is for you.

A murder mystery set in Alaska? Yes! 

This book is number five in the Liam Campbell series. I didn’t feel like I was missing too much by not having read the others. The story is well written. Plenty of descriptive scenes. I could picture the beautiful landscape in my head. The story is good, however I had a hard time getting into it. It didn’t engage me very much. Like something was missing. It seemed like it was being told in a monotone voice the whole way through. The highlight of the book was Sybilla Karlsen. She’s a delight! The rest of the characters weren’t as delightful. It seemed like Liam couldn’t be bothered by anything. Maybe it had something to do with something that happened in the prior books. The ending was interesting. I will say that. 

As a whole, this book is a good read. I did struggle a bit to get through the story. The pacing is fine and the story is well written. My issues with the book hasn’t turned me off from reading other books by her. This one didn’t do it for me unfortunately. My suggestion is to check out this book and make up your own mind. I give this 3 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*