Monthly Archives: April 2016

Book Review: ‘The Alchemy of Reality’ by Andy Echevarria

The alchemy of reality

Title: The Alchemy of Reality

Published: 4th January 2016

Author: Andy Echevarria

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/5167836.Andy_Echevarria

Amazon Page: www.amazon.com/Andy-Echevarria/e/B004YTE4JQ

Synopsis:

Join us on the ride through a kaleidoscope of mystery and intrigue. In these ten tales of suspense, the lines between fact and reality blur, challenging one’s notions of everyday life. Eerie, poignant, and at times inspiring, this collection of never-before-seen stories will transport you to a world where the supernatural abounds alongside the banal, and nothing is what it seems…

Review:

An interesting collection of suspenseful short reads that are perfect for a lunchtime break. Some I liked more that others but overall a good read.

Taxi – 3 out of 5 stars

Getting caught in a rainstorm is never good. Just when Michelle is about to give up and make a run for the underground station a taxi appears. Saved from getting soaked she can’t thank the driver enough. Her saving grace though soon turns into an uneasy drive home. Leaving her nervous and wary of whom he is. Days pass but the feelings remain so her friend Bev insists she go to a doctor to get some help for her anxieties. Was the taxi man Felix after her or was he a guardian stepping in to help in her time of need.

Crystal Ball – 3 out of 5 stars

Ever since Nathan walked passed a psychic shop he has been fascinated by a crystal ball seen in the window. Its like he is drawn to it. First he thinks he could play catch with it but his mother informs him that the crystal looks like that of a divination ball, one that could tell the future. After convincing his mother to get it for him he is overjoyed and can’t wait to play with it at home.

Back home though is when strange things start to happen with the crystal. Flashes of light and smoke appear out of nowhere. A message from a loved one predicts something bad will happen. If it comes true then who knows what else it might tell him.

The Magician – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Jack is a magician and a good one at that but an accident years before that left him with only one arm has made him question whether he still wants to continue with his craft. He insists to himself that the show he does for the school will be his last. He wants to go out on a high before trying to figure out what he wants to do with the rest of his life. After the show later at a bar he meets a stranger who appears to have seen his show, telling him how good he is. An offer he receives later that night could change his life forever if he believes in the man enough. Could it be true, is there life on Mars?

Dead Asleep – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Living with nightmares is something Sally wants to stop at all costs. She goes to her doctor who suggests she try lucid dreaming so she can try and control what is happening around her in them. Only problem is that she soon starts to loose track of what’s a dream and what’s reality – the reader aswell to some point but think that’s the purpose. She may want to control what is happening in her life with the lucid dreams but if she goes under again will she make it back out sane. The house she lives in was built on an ancient burial ground and so the spirits have cursed the land. No telling what might happen to those who do not heed the warning and leave.

Do Not Trespass – 3 out of 5 stars

Dolan had just left his grandmothers funeral where he had felt anything but settled. An uneasy feeling has followed him around and won’t let him be. Everywhere he goes he gets a sense of something not quite being right and of people being very cold. On the route home, down an almost deserted road, he comes to a stop due to an accident. At first he waits, even sleeps for a time, until he realises that the car in front of his belongs to his grandmother. Further more confusing him is that it has been unused for years. Getting more worked up he confronts the officers to let him look at the drivers. He gets a shock when confronted with the driver though. Something tells me it’s high time he woke up and got back to living.

Black Eagle – 3 out of 5 stars

Ricks life took a different turn when he helped a stranger on the side of the road. All this changes though when his wife is taken ill. Not long for this world she has come to terms with it. Ready to leave and start a new someplace else, to spread her wings and fly high. Rick never thought much of what happens when you pass but with the prospects coming ever closer for his wife he may just start to believe in the unbelievable. He needs to looked out the signs of things to come as they are there if you only look.

Elevator – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Ryan has a strange night he wishes he could forget but it seems to have followed him over to the next day. At a party the night before Ryan and his friend Tyler have a bit too much to drink. Ryan can’t drive and insists that he and Tyler take a cab home but Tyler just goes straight towards his car convinced he is fine to drive. Everything seems to be going fine to begin with but when Ryan starts to hear and see things that may not be there the night takes an unexpected turn. Now the day after on the elevator ride up to work he is struck by strange events again. The elevator keeps stopping and starting and getting very cold in a matter of seconds, he is also surrounded by the smell of lavender and whispers. Something is happening outside his control. Balance must be set right by their actions the night before but at what cost.

The Thirteenth Floor – 3 out of 5 stars

Nothing good happens on the thirteenth floor, especially for Timothy and his neighbours. A murder happened years before that the sight of still gives him nightmares. The woman in question was the one he was having an affair with. Two years later and he still can’t forget. After getting to his building and finding the lifts both out of order he has to walk up. It’s on the route up to his apartment that people from his past confront him, though they seem to act more like monsters than people and are meant to be dead – or are they? It seems they are there to make him remember something important he seems to have forgotten. A lesson must be learnt no matter the cost.

The Bronx is Burning – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Fires have been happening all around the Bronx leaving the cops with no clues. Eugene has a theory but one that’s a little out there. It might also be linked to the missing persons case for his neighbour. After going to the cops to talk through his invisible person theory he is almost laughed out by the captain. Only later when another cop, Ruth Abdullah, comes round to his place on her own accord to talk through his theory does he get excited that someone might actually believe him. From the day his neighbour went missing he took photos of her apartment that showed strange residuals left behind. He needs to believe in the unbelievable to find out what really left those marks and why.

Wunderkind – 3.5 out of 5 stars

A game of chess has a lot of moves and strategic thinking involved to win the game. The same can be said for life, though it can sometimes seem more complicated. Lucas has been almost pushed into playing chess by his father for the past few years. What started out as a wager to get some extra money if he won soon turned into big game tournaments; like his father used to play before he was born. This new tournament seems to hold more behind it than just a game of chess for Lucas. His dad has been keeping a secret and its time it was told. When playing a game you have to know when to go all in to win and when to hold back for the better of someone else. Chess lovers will like this one but if you haven’t played before then all the moves that get mentioned might get confusing.

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Overall rating 3.25 out of 5 stars

I received this ARC from the author for my honest review.

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Release Blitz: ‘Predator’ by Michelle Horst

 
Title: Predator
 Author: Michelle Horst
Genre: Romantic Suspense
 Release Date: April 29, 2016
Blurb

All my life I’ve been hiding, until there is no corner on this god-forsaken earth left for me to hide. I have to pay for the sins of my father. No one with Ellison blood in their veins is allowed to live, and I am the last of my bloodline.

I am kept in a container waiting for my death sentence to be carried out, when he comes. He is only known as ‘Predator’. No one knows who he works for, only that he leaves no one alive.

His every breath is filled with the last gasp of his dying prey.

But for some reason he doesn’t kill me.

I don’t know which is worse, the death sentence hanging over my head, or being at his mercy.


Purchase Links
AMAZON US / UK
Excerpt

“Look at me, Cara,” and he waits until I do, “love is such a flawed thing. You can love someone but still leave them. What I feel for you goes way beyond that one word. I’m addicted to you. I feel protective of you. I breathe for you.” His eyes caress my face and follow the tears into my hair. “Love is really such a flawed word for what I feel. I live for you.”


 

 

Author Bio

Michelle Horst is from a small town in South Africa.

She’s been in love with reading from an early age. She has a passion for books, quotes and animals.

She first tried her hand at writing in early 2009 and as the first words started to form into a book, she knew she was hooked.

Dreams spilled onto pages, and that was the beginning of a wonderful journey. A journey filled with joy, passion and heart stopping moments. Most of all, it’s filled with such pride and peace as a story comes to life, and characters fill your life, living in the very walls of your mind, living in the minds of your readers.
Thank you to each and every reader and for choosing to escape in one of my books.

Michelle 😉

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Book Review: ‘The Renegade’s Heart’ by Claire Delacroix

The Renegade's Heart

Title: The Renegade’s Heart (The True Love Brides Book 1)

Published: 12th January 2014

Author: Claire Delacroix pseudonym for Deborah Cooke

Facebook: www.facebook.com/AuthorClaireDelacroix

Facebook: www.facebook.com/AuthorDeborahCookeFanPage

Twitter: @cooke_delacroix

Synopsis:

Released from the captivity of the Fae, Murdoch Seton wants nothing more than to forget his lost years. Undertaking a quest to recover treasure stolen from his family seems the perfect solution – but Murdoch is not counting upon a curious maiden who holds both the secret to the theft and his sole redemption.

Isabella is outraged to find her brother’s keep besieged by a renegade knight – especially one who is too handsome for his own good or hers. After a single encounter, she becomes convinced that his cause is just and decides to unveil the true thief, never imagining that their single shared kiss has launched a battle for Murdoch’s very soul.

As the treacherous Fae move to claim Murdoch forever, Isabella seeks to heal the knight who has stolen her heart. But will Murdoch allow her to take a risk and endanger herself? Or will he sacrifice himself to ensure Isabella’s future?

This edition includes excerpts from THE HIGHLANDER’S CURSE and KISS OF FIRE.

Review:

2016 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book about a curse or prophecy. Historical highland romance with a paranormal twist – loved it! There is a good balance between the historical world and the fae world. I don’t think it really matters if you have read the others in series or not as feel that this could be read as a standalone. Does make me want to check out the rest of them though.

Murdoch has been set free from the fae world so he can return to his homeland. He should have known though that the fae Queen wouldn’t give him up so freely. There is always a catch it seems with the fae, nothing is quite as it seems. The Queen wants him to stay with her so plants a curse on him that will slowly turn his heart black making his only choice to stay alive to go back to her – or is it? On route home he meets an old friend, Stewart, who informs him it has been three years since he was last seen. What felt like weeks held captive in the illusion of paradise with the fae was really a lot longer. When he gets within the keep he learns that his father has passed and brother is now the laird. He also finds out that their sacred relic has been stolen. So he, along with Stewart and two squires, set out on a quest to return the relic in hope it will bring prosperity back to his lands. First point of call is to go back to the people who sold the relic in the first place. If past stories are to be believed then they have gone back to their old habits of stealing. He will find the truth and the relic no matter what; he just wasn’t expecting to find something worth a whole lot more in the process.

Isabella is intrigued by Murdoch the first moment she sees him through her window. He appears so bold in his actions with wanting to speak to her brother no matter what. When he gets inside he stumbles across her in the corridor outside her bedroom. Just this brief meeting has her curious so after he follows a servant up to her brother she follows to listen outside the room. She can hear the whole exchange where Murdoch is almost accusing her brother, or their family, of stealing a relic that belonged to his family now. She believes her brother has nothing to do with the theft but something in his voice makes her think he does know something about who might be involved. When the door opens, fearing being caught she rushes back to her room but not before Murdoch catches up to her. He forces her into her room where he confronts her about what she heard. After hearing his story she has this need to help him. Believing in him when it may appear he does not. Murdoch is just seeing this situation as something he can use to his advantage. He thinks to seduce her into finding out information. One stolen kiss though is enough to make both start to feel more than they first thought.

With the fae not playing fair and confrontation from all sides it will be a race against time for them to find the relic and figure out a way to save Murdoch. They may end up getting some help from unusual sources. If Murdoch can just be the real man he has always been, someone Isabella has seen from the start, then he may just find a way out and get everything he has always wanted.

Intrigue, danger, passion and romance make for an interesting read. Setting the scene for what’s to come in the rest of the series and I can’t wait to check them all out.

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4 out of 5 stars

I received this ARC from the author for my honest review.

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Filed under Historical Romance, Paranormal Romance, Reading Challenges, Reading Nook Blog Posts

Release Blitz: ‘Sticky’ by Julia Swift

 

 

Title: Sticky
 Author: Julia Swift
Genre: Contemporary Romance
  Release Date: April 27, 2016
Blurb

Nicholas Gage has one last job to do before he’s paid off his debt to the terrible crime boss he owes. A master of surveillance, theft, and the con, nothing can stop Gage. But when he meets Sloan Casey, the sister of his mark, and the sexiest woman he’s ever laid eyes upon, what was supposed to be his last job becomes something much more complicated – and sexy.

Gage knows he should stick to the plan, but he can’t keep his hands off his smart-mouthed, curvy lady. With the stakes sky-high, can he finish this job and keep Sloan? Or will he lose her forever when she finds out the truth?

WARNING: This book is about a sexy possessive man who can’t keep it in his pants when it comes to his woman. This has super-hot scenes, and stars an overprotective, well endowed man who knows how to use it.

 

Purchase Links

AMAZON: US / UK

 

Excerpt

Maybe this job won’t be completely god-awful after all. At least, that’s what I’m thinking when I turn up the sunny, tree-lined avenue surrounded by depressingly beige cinder-block apartment buildings. Every few houses is a “hotel” that looks exactly like its neighboring apartments, the kind of hotels that would be no stranger to providing in-home entertainment, complete with a happy ending.

This is no neighborhood for a lady. Especially not the lady I imagine from the photos Topknot included in the file.

There’s something about Sloan’s face in those pictures. Her body is fucking magazine-perfect, if anyone in the fashion industry had eyeballs and allowed women to look the way they should in magazines—curvy and luscious, with tits I’d need both hands to squeeze, and the kind of ass you want to dive into, like a pinup from back in the day when they knew what real women looked like.

But it’s her face that makes her stick in my mind, even now as I’m creeping down her block keeping my eyes peeled for Morton’s, the diner where she works. Even in the few candid shots that Topknot managed to take of her while she busied herself pouring coffee around the diner, leaning against tables to chat with older couples, a huge smile on her cupid-bow lips, there’s this look in her pale green eyes (eyes I’ve never seen on anyone before, so clear they could pass for a gemstone, eyes that have to be fake, contacts or some shit). One photo in particular, of her facing Topknot’s table, smiling over the lens’s head (probably taking Topknot’s order, unaware of the hidden camera strapped to his body somewhere), captures a longing in her eyes. She’s smiling, but in her head, she’s somewhere else. Somewhere happy. Somewhere her loser gambling addict of a brother won’t make her work her ass off while he hoards his pile of ill-earned gains.

 

 

Author Bio

 Julia Swift is a New York native who loves sizzling, suspenseful stories and dangerously sexy men. She’s turned her love for reading into a new career as an author and insomniac. You can find her writing in her local Starbucks with an iced coffee and an ear for gossip!

Join the Julia Swift Fan Club for Exclusive Giveaways, New Release Information and Delightful Surprises!

http://eepurl.com/bS05iX 

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Release Blitz: ‘Shameless’ by Lex Martin

Title: Shameless
 Author: Lex Martin
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
  Release Date: April 26, 2016
Blurb
Brady…

What the hell do I know about raising a baby? Nothing. Not a goddamn thing.

Yet here I am, the sole guardian of my niece. I’d be lost if it weren’t for Katherine, the beautiful girl who seems to have all the answers. Katherine, who’s slowly finding her way into my cynical heart.

I keep reminding myself that I can’t fall for someone when we don’t have a future. But telling myself this lie and believing it are two different things.

Katherine…

When Brady shows up on a Harley, looking like an avenging angel—six feet, three inches of chiseled muscle, eyes the color of wild sage, and sun-kissed skin emblazoned with tattoos—I’m not sure if I should fall at his feet or run like hell. Because if I tell him what happened the night his family died, he might hate me.

What I don’t count on are the nights we spend together trying to forget the heartache that brought us here. I promise him it won’t mean anything, that I won’t fall in love.

I shouldn’t make promises I can’t keep.

Shameless
is an adult contemporary romance/spinoff featuring a character from The
Dearest Series, but it can be read as a complete standalone.


Purchase Links
AMAZON US / UK / UNIVERSAL
Also Available

 

The Dearest Series Boxed Set is FREE on KU for a limited time. Get all three Dearest Series books, including Dearest Clementine, Finding Dandelion and Kissing Madeline, as well as Dearest Series bonus scenes and the first chapter of Shameless.

 

Purchase Links

 

AMAZON US / UK / UNIVERSAL
Author Bio
Lex writes adult novels, the sexy kind with lotsa angst, a whole lotta kissing, and the hot happily ever afters. When she’s not writing, she lives a parallel life as an English teacher. She loves printing black and white photos, listening to music on vinyl, and getting lost in a great book. Bitten by wanderlust, she’s lived all over the country but currently resides in the City of Angels with her husband and twin daughters.
Author Links

TWITTER / INSTAGRAM / PINTEREST 

 

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