Friday, April 21, 2017

Book Review Refuge on Crescent Hill by Melanie Dobson

Refuge on Crescent Hill
Title: Refuge on Crescent Hill

Author: Melanie Dobson

Stars: 4 stars out of 5

A romantic mystery/love story set in a small town in Ohio. It is a christian story and contains no blatant, and needless, sexual content. The story is well developed and is able to tie the underground railroad into the plot and not leave the reader wondering. It also was able to include spouse/partner abuse in the overall storyline. I enjoyed the book and was able to finish it in one day.

I have rated this book 4 stars.

I obtained this book from Amazon in Kindle format.

Thank you Frank!

Moving home after a recent job loss was supposed to reassure Camden Bristow and give her time to decide what to do next. But when she arrives in Etherton, Ohio, she discovers that her grandmother, who she hasn't talked to in years, has passed away and "home" is an empty mansion 150 years old. Not exactly the comfort Camden was looking for. What happened to the house she played in as a child, the bedtime stories that told of secret passageways and runaway slaves, and all those family memories? When antiques start disappearing and footsteps are heard, some of those memories start to creep back and Camden wonders if her grandmother's bedtime stories might actually be true. What really happened here . . . at Crescent Hill? How was her grandmother involved? Who still has access to the house? And for what purpose? As she works to uncover the past and present mysteries harbored in her home, Camden also uncovers secrets about her family that could change the town--and her life--forever. 

Paperback271 pages
Published March 11th 2010 by Kregel Publications

About The Author:
Melanie Dobson
Writing novels is a fun excuse for Melanie to explore ghost towns and old houses, travel to unusual places, and spend hours reading dusty books and journals. She writes both contemporary and historical fiction with threads of romance and suspense. 

Melanie is the award-winning author of sixteen historical romance, suspense, and contemporary novels including Catching the Wind, Beneath a Golden Veil, and The Silent Order. Three of her novels including Chateau of Secrets have won Carol Awards, and Love Finds You in Liberty, Indiana won Best Novel of Indiana.

Melanie and her husband, Jon, have two daughters. After moving numerous times with Jon's work, the Dobsons have finally settled near Portland, Oregon, and they love to travel and hike in both the mountains and the cliffs above the Pacific. When Melanie isn't writing or researching, she enjoys line dancing, biking, and making up stories with her kids.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Book Review Deadly Illusions by Chester D. Campbell

Deadly Illusions (Greg McKenzie Mysteries, Book 3)
Title: Deadly Illusions

Author: Chester D. Campbell

Stars: 4.25 Stars

A neatly written mystery novel that primarily takes place in and around Nashville Tennessee. The main character is a retired Air Force Office Of Special Investigations (AFOSI) Agent. As a retired AFOSI Agent how could I not read this story? I thought it was a well told story without any major flaws and it followed a logical sequence. I would read other books in this series.

I have rated this book 4.25 stars.

I obtained this book from Amazon in Kindle format.

Molly Saint hires new PI's Greg and Jill McKenzie to check into her husband's background, then disappears. It starts them on a tangled trail of deceit. Complicating matters further, Greg gets drawn into a troubling police investigation stemming from the assassination of the Federal Reserve Board chairman at a Nashville hotel. The case resurrects old problems with a Murder Squad detective and his colleagues among Nashville's finest. The deeper the McKenzies dig, the more deadly illusions they face. After threats, break-ins, and another murder, the charade ends in a shocking showdown.

Kindle Edition285 pages
Published (first published March 14th 2004) 

About The Author:
Chester D. Campbell
Chester D. Campbell was born in Nashville, TN in 1925, smack in the midst of the "Roaring Twenties." Though too young for such at the time, he had visions of roaring "off into the wild blue yonder." After more than a year and a half of non-roaring during World War II, he left the service as an Aviation Cadet and studied journalism. His first taste of mysteries came early in his newspaper career when he read two novels by Horace McCoy. Over the next 42 years, he spun words as a reporter, freelance journalist, political speechwriter, advertising copywriter, magazine editor, and public relations pro. He kept his dream of creating mysteries alive and took up novel writing on retirement. He has currently published five Greg McKenzie Mysteries and two books featuring PI Sid Chance. He has added three Post Cold War thrillers and a standalone suspense story . The Greg McKenzie character had his origins in Campbell's Air Force experience. After serving as an intelligence officer in the Korean War, he remained in the Air National Guard, retiring as a lieutenant colonel. He and his wife, Sarah, live in Nashville, TN.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Book Review Falling Darkness by Karen Harper

Falling Darkness (South Shores, #3)
Title: Falling Darkness

Author: Karen Harper

Stars: 5 stars out of 5

Falling Darkness is book 3 in a series and while I didn't read book 2 I was able to catch up after a few chapters.
This book will keep readers questioning everything they are reading and the second the read thinks they have it figured out. Bam the readers will begin to questions everything they have read wondering if they could be wrong this whole time.
Karen Harper is able to pull reader from page to page with excitement and fear of what will happen next and could that old man really hurt someone?

This is a must read book for the summer reading list.

Advance Copy from Netgalley and the publisher

Claire Britten's training never prepared her for this the forensic psychology curriculum didn't cover plane crashes. Or how to help fellow survivors cope, seven frightened people huddled in two small rafts awaiting a rescue that may never come. Especially when three of them are your ex-husband, your young daughter and the man you love, Nick Markwood, whose pursuit by a criminal mastermind forced you all to run in the first place.

When the bedraggled crew finally reaches dry land, they are still far from safe. Nick tries to secure transport to their witness-protection placement, urging everyone to stick to the identities laid out for them. They don't need any complications. But when danger follows them to their supposed safe haven, Claire and Nick no longer know who is helping or harming them. Racked by doubt and mistrust, still hunted, they must band together or fall.

Hardcover386 pages
Expected publication: April 18th 2017 by Mira Books

About The Author:
Karen Harper
A New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Karen Harper is a former college English instructor (The Ohio State University) and high school literature and writing teacher. A lifelong Ohioan, Karen and her husband Don divide their time between the midwest and the southeast, both locations she has used in her books. Besides her American settings, Karen loves the British Isles, where her Scottish and English roots run deep, and where she has set many of her historical Tudor-era mysteries and her historical novels about real and dynamic British women. Karen's books have been published in many foreign languages and she won the Mary Higgins Clark Award for 2005. Karen has given numerous talks to readers and writers across the county. Her most recent books include THE SOUTH SHORES TRILOGY (CHASING SHADOWS, DROWNING TIDES and FALLING DARKNESS.) Her latest historical is THE ROYAL NANNY. 


Monday, April 17, 2017

Book Review A Witness Above by Andy Straka (Frank Pavlicek Novels Book 1)

A Witness Above by Andy Straka
Title: A Witness Above (A Frank Pavlicek Novel Book #1)

Author: Andy Straka

Stars: 4.25 out of 5

An excellent murder mystery set in my home state of Virginia. The prologue gives you sufficient background on the main character, Frank Pavlivek, to understand his methods and techniques. The story progresses in an orderly fashion and will not leave the reader with any head scratching questions at the last page. I will put this author on my will read list.

I have rated this book 4.25 stars.

I obtained this book from Amazon in Kindle format.

Thirteen years ago, Frank Pavlicek left the NYPD under less than ideal circumstances. Now the divorced father of a teenage daughter, he works as a private investigator in Charlottesville, Virginia, where he indulges his passion for falconry and tries to live outside the shadow of his past. Frank is hunting with his red-tailed hawk, Armistead, when he finds a teenage boy's body barely concealed behind a pile of brush. It's a truly gruesome crime scene one of the many things Frank doesn't miss about working homicide in the big city. But when Frank opens the dead boy's wallet, things become even more disturbing. Scribbled on the edge of a dollar bill is the phone number of Frank's daughter. He pockets the evidence and flees. Days later, his daughter is in jail. Now, his past is coming back to haunt him, and his reputation and life are on the line.

About The Author: 
Andy Straka
Andy Straka is the bestselling author of nine novels, including the Shamus Award-Winning, Anthony and Agatha Award-nominated Frank Pavlicek private eye series. His other books include RECORD OF WRONGS, hailed by Mystery Scene magazine as “a first-rate thriller,” and THE BLUE HALLELUJAH. Part 2 of the DRAGONFLIES series (DRAGONFLIES: FLOCK OF ANGELS) has also just been released. (This near future technothriller series has been optioned for film and television.)

A licensed falconer and co-founder of the popular Crime Wave at the annual Virginia Festival of the Book, Andy is a graduate of Williams College. 



Friday, April 14, 2017

Book Review The Ghost of Blackwood Lane by Greg Enslen

The Ghost of Blackwood Lane by Greg Enslen
Title: The Ghost of Blackwood Lane

Author: Greg Enslen

Stars: 4 Stars out of 5

A thriller that takes place in O'Fallon, Illinois and surrounding area. The author has built a description of the town that allowed this reader to close his eyes and return to a small town where he lived and worked for two years in the mid nineties. The characters are realistic and driven by strong motives. 

I have rated this book 4 stars and recommend it if you enjoy stories with a hint of ESP thrown into the mix.

I obtained this book from Amazon in Kindle format.

For years, the witness protection program has kept Gary Foreman safe from the horrors he left behind. He’s got a new career and new friends, but they can never know his real name or where he comes from. But the program can’t protect him from the relentless dreams of a young woman in danger. It’s the same dream, night after night, and Gary is helpless, unable to stop the dream’s inevitable and horrifying conclusion. The woman seems strangely familiar…is she someone from his dark past? Is she even real? All he knows for certain is that she needs his help, or she will die.

Kindle Edition302 pages
Published November 1st 2010 by Gypsy Publications

About The Author:
Greg Enslen
 Greg Enslen is an Ohio author of nineteen books, including five novels, a new series of "Game of Thrones" Binge Guides, and several collections of essays and columns. All of his books are available on Amazon and via Kindle, and several are available from his publisher, Gypsy Publications. 

To receive updates, follow him on Facebook at or visit Sign up for the newsletter for discounts and free book promotions at - and thanks!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Book Review The Thief By Michele Hauf

The Thief (Elite Crimes Unit #1)
Title: The Thief

Author: Michele Hauf 

Stars: 3.5 out of 5

I am a suckers for books about talented criminals working together.  I can't even begin to tell you how many times I have watched movies like Oceans the classic to Catch a Thief and the list goes on so when I saw the chance to pick up advance copy from netgalley about a Elite Crimes Unit with talent criminal I couldn't help but myself.

I guess I am giving it 3.50 stars because this series had great potential.  The author might need to scale back the endless amount of characters that pop in and out of the book like popcorn. The romance was a little to forced and could use more build up.
The story is fast pace with lots of action and violence which isn't normally found in this type of set up but I enjoyed the change in pace. Yes there is humorous moments.

This book is a wonderful start to a series and I can't wait to read book 2 which I hope will tie up the loose ends this book seemed to have endless amounts.

Advance Copy from Netgalley. 

The Elite Crimes Unit works behind the scenes of Interpol—and employs some of the world’s most talented criminal minds. Because as everyone knows, it takes a thief to catch a thief—or to seduce one . . .

The old farmhouse in the French countryside is a refuge for former jewel thief Josephine Deveraux. Admittedly, there aren’t many men in the vicinity, but she has her cat to cuddle up with. It’s a far cry from her former life, constantly running from the law, and she’s enjoying her peace . . . until the intruder in the three-piece suit tackles her. He wants her back in the game, helping with a heist—and he’s not above making threats to get his way.

Little does Josephine know that notorious—and notoriously charming—thief, Xavier Lambert, is after the very same 180-carat prize she’s being blackmailed to steal. To his chagrin, he’s doing it not as a free agent, but as a member of the Elite Crimes Unit—the team he was forced to join when his brilliant career came to a sudden end. And little does Xavier know that his comeback is about to include a stranger’s kiss, a stinging slap, and a hunt for missing treasure—along with the infuriatingly sexy woman who’s outfoxing him .

About The Author:
Michele Hauf
Michele has been writing romance, action-adventure and fantasy stories for over twenty years. Her first published novel was DARK RAPTURE.

France, musketeers, vampires and faeries populate her stories. And if she followed the adage 'write what you know', all her stories would have snow in them. Fortunately, she steps beyond her comfort zone and writes about countries she has never visited and of creatures she has never seen. 

Authors Website

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Book Review Pursued by Lisa Harris

Pursued (Nikki Boyd Files #3)
Title: Pursued 

Author: Lisa Harris

Stars: 5 out of 5


This is the first book in the series Nikkie Boyd Flies I have read. I was worried I would be lost jumping into a series.  I wasn't because Lisa Harris was able to bring the past and present together quickly keeping reader engaged in the the current story while giving new readers a chance to catch up.
Lisa Harris is able to keep readers engaged though out the story while building the different characters who readers will become attached to quickly. 
While the plot line is pretty predictable the author is able to keep reader engaged with the strong characters who seem understand who they are in the creation of the Lisa Harris world.
Pursued is well throughout book that will have reader rereading the book for enjoyment.
Advance Copy from Netgalley 

Nikki Boyd's flight into Nashville was routine--up until the crash landing at the airport. When the dust settles, Nikki discovers that the woman who had been seated next to her on the plane is missing--and no one will admit she was ever there. Erika Hamilton had been flying to Nashville with an air marshal as a key witness in an upcoming grand jury trial. When she flees from the crash, is she running from trouble or straight into it? Before Nikki can even see her family, she and her team are pulled into a missing persons case where the motives are as unclear as the suspects.

About The Author:
Lisa Harris
BIO: Award-winning author of nineteen novels and novellas, Lisa Harris lives with her husband and their three children in Mozambique, Africa, where they work as missionaries. 

When she’s not busy writing or home schooling, she loves traveling, cooking different ethnic foods, and photographing animals and birds in the African bush.

Author Website:

Monday, April 10, 2017

Book Review: Above the Bridge by Deborah Garner (A Paige Mackenzie Mystery)

Above the Bridge (Paige MacKenzie Mysteries, #1)
Title: Above The Bridge  (Paige Mackenzie Mystery)

Author: Deborah Garner

Stars: 4.25 Stars out of 5

A light cozy mystery, with a touch of lost treasure, a good dose of time travel and what appears to be a budding romance. For added enjoyment it all takes place in Jackson Hole Wyoming. No matter your taste in books there is something for everyone in this story. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and read it in one sitting.

I have rated this book 4.25 stars.

I obtained this book from Amazon in Kindle format.
Thank you Frank for your Review.

When Paige MacKenzie arrives in Jackson Hole, her only goal is to complete a simple newspaper assignment about the Old West. However, it's not long before her instincts tell her there's more than a basic story to be found in the popular, northwestern Wyoming mountain area. A chance encounter with attractive cowboy Jake Norris soon has Paige chasing a legend of buried treasure, passed down through generations.

From the torn edge of a water-damaged map to the mysterious glow of an antler arch, Paige will follow clues high into the mountainous terrain and deep into Jackson's history. Side-stepping a few shady characters who are also searching for the same hidden reward, she will have to decide who is trustworthy and who is not.

About The Author:
Deborah Garner
Deborah Garner is an accomplished travel writer with a passion for back roads and secret hideaways. Born and raised in California, she studied in France before returning to the U.S. to attend UCLA. After stints in graduate school and teaching, she attempted to clone herself for decades by founding and running a dance and performing arts center, designing and manufacturing clothing and accessories, and tackling both spreadsheets and display racks for corporate retail management. Her passions include photography, hiking and animal rescue. She speaks five languages, some substantially better than others. She now divides her time between California and Wyoming, dragging one human and two canines along whenever possible.



Friday, April 7, 2017

Book Review An Accidental Death (DC Smith #1)

An Accidental Death (D.C. Smith #1)
Title: An Accidental Death (DC Smith #1)

Author: Peter Grainger

Stars: 4.25 Stars

A quirky but very interesting British Police detective story. The main character, DC Smith, is an older man of many hidden talents of which most are unknown to his colleagues. He is not afraid to use unorthodox methods to achieve successful results. I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading other books in the series.

I have rated this book 4.25 stars.

I obtained this book from Amazon in Kindle format.
Thank you Frank for you Reviews

The story opens with the apparently accidental drowning of a sixth form student in the Norfolk countryside. As a matter of routine, or so it seems, the case passes across the desk of Detective Sergeant Smith, recently returned to work after an internal investigation into another case that has led to tensions between officers at Kings Lake police headquarters. As an ex DCI, Smith could have retired by now, and it is clear that some of his superiors wish that he would do so. 

The latest trainee detective to work with him is the son of a member of his former team, and together they begin to unravel the truth about what happened to Wayne Fletcher. As the investigation proceeds, it becomes clear that others are involved - some seem determined to prevent it, some seem to be taking too much interest. In the end Smith operates alone, having stepped too far outside standard procedures to ask for support. He knows that his own life might be at risk but he has not calculated on the life of his young assistant also being put in danger. He might still get his man but at what cost?

Kindle Edition204 pages
Published October 3rd 2013 by Peter Grainger

About The Author:
Although I've always been a reader, I must admit that I first got into crime novels via television series such as Morse and Frost. It seemed odd at first, reading about characters that I had only watched before, and I found that I didn't always agree with what the producers and scriptwriters had done - but then I probably am one of life's disagree-ers.

Having independently published three novels on Amazon's Kindle, I decided that my next project could be a crime novel of my own. In some ways it was easier to write than my general fiction, the conventions of the genre making some decisions straightforward, but I still spent a lot of time developing the characters in 'An Accidental Death'; to me, character comes before everything else in fiction. The subsequent novels develop the original characters as well as adding plenty of new ones.

I think that Smith himself is a recognisable individual. He is old-fashioned in some ways and has a sense that he has been left behind as the police force is modernised. He makes mistakes, too. And yet his wealth of experience and the understanding of people that stems from that experience mean that he is still able to pursue the wrongdoers intuitively, when more conventional methods fail. He is far from the first fictional detective to have these qualities, of course - there is nothing new under the sun. In the end, though, I grew to like him enough to perhaps give him some more case to solve soon.

The other three novels? I published them under a different name. They are not crime fiction at all but as several readers have said that they would like to take a look, I will now list them here: 'Afon', 'The Rink' and 'Asher' by Robert Partridge. Under the same name, you can also find a set of short stories called 'Paris and Other Love Stories' Sorry but my author page won't let me post direct links.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Book Review: Shine On by Allison Jewell (Book One)

Shine On (Shine On, #1)
Title: Shine One (Book #1)

Author: Allison Jewell

Stars:  4 out of 5

Life in a rural Kentucky town, during prohibition, where the distilling and sale of illegal liquor (moonshine) plays a significant part. The lead character is just trying to survive and and achieve her goal of an education and becoming a teacher. She, innocently, becomes involved in both the distilling and sale of the aforementioned product. This is an intriguing beginning to what must be a compelling saga.

I have rated this book 4 stars.

I obtained this book from Amazon in Kindle format.
Thank you Frank For your Review

Emmie's sole purpose in life was taking care of her moonshine loving step-father. When he is killed in a fiery crash on their farm, she is left alone and frustrated with a mountain of debt. Working as a seamstress for a crazy-old-coot shopkeeper is not the kind of life she had imagined for herself. 

The curious events that surround her step-father’s death send Emmie on a quest for answers. Answers that lead to a dangerous secret tucked away on her property. Stumbling on a moonshine still was an unfortunate event for most folks in the hills of Kentucky. She was lucky not to have been shot on the spot. Emmie saw hope in the steam escaping the curved copper pipe of "Ole Maizy". However, a series of mishaps put her front and center in a local moonshine war.

In the midst of chaos, Emmie is befriended by an attorney recently transported from Chicago. Silas McDowell is a man seeking some answers of his own. In an attempt to find a little roaring twenties glamour in the small town, he introduces Emmie to the underground world of Speakeasies and Blind Pigs. Loyalty, lies, and murder conspire to push Silas and Emmie together or rip them apart. Cloaked in secrets and unsure whom to trust, Emmie must decide to drown in darkness or find a way to Shine On.

About The Author: 
Allison Jewell
Allison Jewell lives in Southern Kentucky with her husband, two sons, and dog. When she isn't hard at work on her next novel, she can be found doing one of her favorite things: watching her older son chase the puck at the local hockey rink, hanging out at home listening to records with her husband, or making up silly songs with her younger son. Allison was an elementary school teacher and education consultant before becoming a writer. 


Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Book Review Saving Mercy by Abbie Roads

Saving Mercy by Abbie Roads
Title: Saving Mercy

Author: Abbie Roads

Stars: 5 Stars I would give more if I could

Abbie Roads blew my mind away with this book. Yes the protagonist is broken, damaged but he works hard to rise above his up bring to right the wrongs of his father. The readers is given glimpse of the broken little boy though the eyes of the female lead. While readers are given Mercy POV it doesn't take away from the story but only enhances it more. The protagonist has depth and the author doesn't rely of the typical FBI story lines. She pulls is able to bring the characters to life.

The book has a supernatural side but it really doesn't overtake the story in anyway instead it only brings the story to life pull at readers heart strings and minds.

Saving Mercy isn't about saving the woman as much as it is saving the protagonist from his mind, and fathers control. 

Abbie Roads is able to pull from the real world experiences as a therapist which helps the story to come alive. 

The romance is believable in this story. 

The ending of the story is tied quickly in a nice little bow but the build up to the last few chapters Abbie gives the readers a ride they will never forget not to mention they will want to run out and tell their friends. This is a must read.

Thank you Netgalley and the author for an advance copy


He's found her at last
Cain Killion knows himself to be a damaged man, his only saving grace the extrasensory connection to blood that he uses to catch murderers. His latest case takes a macabre turn when he discovers a familiar and haunting symbol linking the crime to his own horrific past-and only one woman could know what it means.
Only to lose her to a nightmare
Mercy Ledger is brave, resilient, beautiful-and in terrible danger. The moment he sees Mercy, Cain knows he's the one who can save her. He also knows he's beyond redemption. But the lines between good and evil blur and the only thing clear to Cain and Mercy is that they belong together. Love is the antidote for blood-but is their bond strong enough to overcome the evil that stalks them?
Kindle Edition320 pages
Expected publication: April 4th 2017 by Sourcebooks Casablanca

About The Author:
Abbie RoadsSeven Things about Abbie Roads:
1. She loves Snicker Parfaits. Gotta start with what’s most important, right?
2. She writes dark emotional books featuring damaged characters, but always gives her hero and heroine a happy ending… after torturing them for three hundred pages.
3. By day she’s a mental health counselor known for her blunt, honest style of therapy. At night she burns up the keyboard. Well… Burn might be too strong a word. She at least sits with her hands poised over the keyboard, waiting for inspiration to strike. And when it does—the keyboard might get a little warm.
4. She can’t stand it when people drive slowly in the passing lane. Just saying. That’s major annoying. Right?
5. She loves taking pictures of things she thinks are pretty.
6. She lives in Marion, Ohio with her favorite fellow and two fur babies.
7. Being a published author is a dream come true for her.

*A special note from Abbie Roads

Dear Readers,
I wrote RACE THE DARKNESS from start to finish three different times, with three different story lines, and with three different titles! The only thing that ever remained the same between the versions was Xander and Isleen. I believed in them and the story they wanted to tell. I hope you love reading about their tragedies and triumphs as much as I enjoyed writing them… All three times! And isn’t the cover amazing, beautiful, gorgeous? I cried the first time I saw it! It made all the hard work to get this book to you worth it!
Abbie Roads

Authors Website:

Book Review Wild Ride (Black Knights Inc. #9)

Wild Ride (Black Knights Inc., #9)
Title: Wild Ride  (Black Knight Inc #9)

Author: Julie Ann Walker

Stars: 5 out of 5


Most of her stories are stand alone books but honestly this one is the one I suggest you read after having read at least one other Black Knight Inc book. I think readers just starting off will get a little lost because Ozzie has been in every single book and his characters has developed over the years creating him to be the one characters readers fell in love with. 

For Julie Ann Walker fans this is the book you have been waiting for and trust me you will not be disappointed. Everything about this book is what you expect from the author good laughs, hot sex and romance and believe able because the romance has been building since first book.

I can't think of one thing I would want different from this story. Julie Ann Walker follows her traditional story with the damsel in distress, this time she thinks its Ozzie who is trying to killer. She uses pop cultural references but they work because of Ozzie being a nerd.

I can't tell you how much I loved this story and by far my favorite in the series.

Thank you Netgalley, Publisher and author for the advance Copy

In a black-on-black international mission that went seriously sideways, Ozzie was badly injured—now he's stuck at BKI headquarters in Chicago, champing at the bit to get out into the field again. To his disgust, he's tasked with distracting Chicago Tribune ace reporter Samantha Tate, who's been trying to dig up the dirt on BKI for years. Turns out Samantha's beauty, intelligence and sense of humor are a seriously big distraction, and Ozzie's losing his desire to keep her at bay.
Ozzie's tired of hiding, and Samantha may be the best-and worst—person to share his secrets with.

Kindle Edition384 pages
Expected publication: April 4th 2017 by Sourcebooks Casablanca

About The Author:
Julie Ann Walker
Julie Ann Walker is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of award-winning romantic suspense. She has won the Book Buyers Best Award, been nominated for the National Readers Choice Award, the Australian Romance Reader Awards, and the Romance Writers of America's prestigious RITA award. Her latest release was named a Top Ten Romance of 2014 by Booklist. Her books have been described as "alpha, edgy, and downright hot." Most days you can find her on her bicycle along the lake shore in Chicago or blasting away at her keyboard, trying to wrangle her capricious imagination into submission.


Twitter: JAWalkerAuthor


Thursday, March 30, 2017

Throwback Thursday Book Review COLOSSUS (My Name Is Not Heather Stokes Book 1)

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Book Review COLOSSUS (My Name Is Not Heather Stokes Book 1)

COLOSSUS (My Name Is Not Heather Stokes Book 1)
Title: COLOSSUS (My Name Is Not Heather Stokes Book 1)

Author: Jette Harris

Stars: 2 out of 5 stars


I decided to read this book based on the glowing reviews from other readers on Amazon. I’ve been a fan of thrillers and horror fiction for as long as I can remember, so I eagerly anticipated digging into COLOSSUS and finding a new, exciting story to digest.

I will begin with the good aspects of the book.

Harris is a skilled wordsmith. She is adept at using the English language to her advantage. She describes emotions, action, and many scenes with skillful aplomb. She opens the novel with a riveting prologue that is interesting, original, and makes a compelling case for believing the rest of the book to be a shotgun blast of dark thrills. For many unfortunate reasons, that promise is never fulfilled and that is where the praise for this novel ends.

The book is positioned as a suspense/horror thriller, but based on my interpretation of the content of COLOSSUS, that is incorrect. There were flashes of suspense, but never was it sustained. Most of those instances occurred within the first few chapters before the teenagers find themselves in Mr. Rhodes’ house of horrors. After that, the story is almost completely devoid of any level of tension. In my experience, the key to a compelling thriller is building tension and injecting unexpected events from time to time to keep the readers guessing. There is precious little of that here. Instead, COLOSSUS features a grueling, monotonous plot that suffers from pointless repetition and offers little in the way of reasons for the readers’ pulse to rise or even to continue reading.

The first few times Rhodes forces himself sexually on the teenagers is shocking (as any tale depicting rape should be). However, the author hamstrings the earth-shattering effects of such an event by boring the reader with blunt repetition. The author writes chapter after chapter of similar rape scenes until the reader becomes numb to the innate terribleness of the act. In doing so, the author also wastes precious pages which could have been used for character development, adding subplots, or building of suspense… on yet more rape scenes. As a result, the pacing is very slow and plodding because the story really doesn’t move until the final few chapters. There are, without exaggeration, dozens of scenes depicting rape or implying “off-screen” rape in the book. Occasionally the author throws in a flashback scene between rape sessions, but they are few and far between.

Once anything resembling a forward-moving story happens, it is very late in the game and in my opinion, too late to save the novel from itself. By the thirtieth rape scene I’d already had enough of the book and the “twist” (if it can be classified as such) is preposterous and a pill I just couldn’t swallow.

Police or FBI presence is non-existent despite this not being Rhodes’ first time torturing and raping kids for a month straight. With this being set in the very recent past (10-13 years), and technology being the state that it is in even in 2003, the idea that the authorities have no leads or clues with regards to the modus operandi of Avery Rhodes is implausible at best. Towards the end of the book, he even brags about them giving him a name (Phoenix) and having knowledge of his escapades. However, they only appear in the beginning of the book and the very end, and do nothing of consequence besides pester an old man. Does every suspense/horror novel have to have a law enforcement element? No. But such a subplot is more likely to build tension and be preferable to another rape scene.

On to the topic of the antagonist, Avery Rhodes (Colossus, Thatch, Phoenix… I might be missing one.) He begins the story sufficiently sinister and menacing enough, but then devolves into a cartoon caricature of a bad guy. He keeps a hunting knife in a bedside table drawer, unlocked, when he goes to rape a victim in the very same room. For some reason he takes his victims from their holding areas into another room to assault them, then returns them to their rooms, despite that creating a huge weak point in his plan. The kids are unrestrained before, during, and after with no handcuffs, no leather restraints, not even plastic zip ties. During the prologue, Rhodes finds a filthy and dilapidated house and secures it for himself. Only to apparently have the time and funds to renovate it, restore it, fill the kitchen with modern appliances, have the electricity restored (despite not being the actual owner of the house), and reinforce or replace all of the doors. He also chooses to make his torture and rape room stark white. Calls it The White Room. Now, I’ve never been a serial killer nor rapist, but if I were to establish a room where I was going to beat, torture, and sexually violate people for a month, the absolute last color I’d want the walls, bedding, and carpeting is white.

As for the ending: despite the seemingly endless scenes of rape and abuse, the ending was much too terse and unsatisfyingly anti-climactic. There is no redemption nor cathartic revenge, no twists in the plot, no big reveals, no final fight. It just ends. Speaking of which, those looking for a reason or meaning behind the series title: My Name Is Not Heather Stokes will not find any resolution to that question by the end of this book. The protagonist is called Heather Stokes at the beginning of the book, is called that throughout the book, and is called Heather Stokes until the very last line. Maybe in the next book?

Lastly, I would like to address the editing. COLOSSUS is rough: Liberal use of parentheses in passages where they are not normally used. (Also occasionally italicized.) Questionable use of semi-colons and other punctuation. Even a section that dips into regional dialect and becomes nigh unreadable when a trifecta of intentionally misspelled words conspires with hundreds of apostrophes during a five-page stretch of italics.

All of those things being said, I write this review not to dissuade the author from writing more, quite the opposite. It is clear Harris knows how to write, and has the key building blocks at her disposal to make a phenomenal story or series. However, this is not that story. I encourage the author to: Please, write more! But I also urge her to hone her craft, refine her skills, and prove that she’s better than this work. I rate this book 2 out of 5 stars with the second star being given solely for the potential of the writer only hinted at in the pages of COLOSSUS.

Thank you Douglas for your Review.


Abducted and held captive, four high school seniors are forced to entertain the malicious appetites of an unpredictable predator. He calls himself Rhodes. They call him Colossus, the looming, threatening figure teetering on the edge of madness. 

Heather Stokes, no stranger to tragedy, does all she can to protect her friends, risking her life and sanity. As days of torture drag into weeks of Hell, both Heather and Rhodes realize that they are in over their heads, and it is possible that none of them will survive. 

COLOSSUS is a brutal psychological thriller that will have fans of Gillian Flynn and James Patterson adding a new name to their list

About The Author:
Jette Harris
I was born and raised in the greater metro-Atlanta area. I live there with my husband, dog, cat, and snakes. 

I graduated from Mercer University in Macon, GA (class of 2008) with a dual BA in English and German, as well as a certificate in secondary English/Language Arts. 

After teaching middle and high school for three years, I ran away screaming.

I now write character-driven, multi-genre novels (and work a dayjob). My debut novel is the horror-thriller COLOSSUS, the first book of the My Name Is Not Heather Stokes series.

My primary goal is to make your heart beat faster.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Book Review Holding Fire (Alpha Security #2) By April Hunt

Holding Fire by April Hunt
Title: Holding Fire

Author: April Hunt

Stars: 4 out of 5

This Romantic Suspense/Military Romance works because of the audience that will be reading the book. 
The male lead his Alpha from head to toe Me Tarzan You Jane lets have sex.  I will protect you if you listen to me and no one else.

The no strings attacked sex followed by love it a little over used expect April Hunt use the female lead as the one who wants no strings.

Trey Hanson is Alpha with the Capital A. Instead of coming from a broken home he is your traditional good old boy who loves his mom and is special ops group are his family. 

Elle Monroe comes from a messed up father who controls his family like he controls congress.  She doesn't want to be controlled.  The author made her feisty without being a brat. 

 The author stays true to the characters from being to end of the book. Reader will feel satisfied with the end of the book.

I enjoyed the Authors writing style it was fast pace, descriptive without being boring.  April Hunt gives her readers what they want with a small twist that will keep her readers hooked.
The secondary characters were more fun to read about which will have me picking up her next book in the series to see if she can keep Charlie true to her characters.

This series will work as a beach read giving readers hot sex, adventures, Alpha males and feisty women.

Than you Netgalley and the publisher for the advance Copy. 


Alpha Security operative Trey Hanson is ready to settle down. When he meets a gorgeous blonde in a bar, and the connection between them is off the charts, he thinks he's finally found the one. But after their night together ends in a hail of gunfire and she disappears in the chaos, Trey's reasons for tracking her down are personal . . . until he learns she's his next assignment.

Elle Monroe never expected to see Trey again. The night they shared was incredible, but the last thing she's looking for is a relationship. Now that it's clear she's being targeted, though, she has no choice but to trust this man she barely knows with her life. And Trey's not just determined to keep her safe . . . he's determined to win her heart.

Kindle Edition
Expected publication: March 28th 2017 by Forever

About The Author:
April Hunt
April blames her chocolate addiction on being born near the country chocolate capital in Hershey, Pennsylvania. When April's not busy raising her husband and two young children (yes, that's worded correctly), she can be found writing about her next brooding alpha hero and the woman he never knew he needed, but now can't live without

HEATED PURSUIT is her debut release with Grand Central Publishing. Alpha Up and meet the heroes of Alpha'll be SO GLAD that you did.



Disclaimer for all reviews sent by the publisher, publicist or author for review.