Category Archives: Contemporary Fiction

Book Review: ‘Cotton Candy and Tangerines’ by MR Chevalier

Title: Cotton Candy and Tangerines

Published: 7th December 2016

Publisher: Cyber Rose Design

Author: MR Chevalier

 

Synopsis:

The great lover, Casanova, once remarked that he loved a multitude of women, not for the experience alone, but in a genuine effort to find the one woman who was truly worth loving.

Pierre White’s primary desire had always been to embark on a quest to find an intelligent, passionate woman to love and adore, a soul mate, a Guinevere. His very own Guinevere, even if it meant that Pierre would have to search the entire world for her.

From the elegant restaurants of Soho to the glittering hotels lining the Rive Gauche, Pierre searches for the one thing that will make his life complete. His soul mate. Life doesn’t hand him that wish, but instead gives him the opportunity to search for it. His travels take him from the arms of one beautiful woman to the next. Will he find himself looking into a lover’s eyes and seeing forever in their depths or will the search continue, one exquisite passionate exploration at a time?

This book is intended for mature audiences.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book with food in the title. Come meet Pierre, the Casanova of the skies with being a first officer pilot. He may be looking for the one but that doesn’t mean he isn’t having fun along the way. Here we follow his sexual escapades, though a pattern is soon seen.

Emotions and passions are flying high when Pierre meets Kirsten for the first time. Just when he thinks he has missed his chance with a beautiful stranger she all but lands in his path twice in one day. He thinks it’s a happy coincidence that she is a flight attendant on his plane. Could she be someone for keeps or for fun? As she’s the first you know it won’t go smoothly. A chance encounter puts the breaks on this hot fling. Could it have been more? Time will tell. The one he really wanted but a random meet with a stranger puts a stop to that.

Seems our Pierre likes a woman in uniform and a Navy one ticks a lot of boxes. Lust at first sight seems to be more of his style. This crazy connection is leading to hot sex and a fabulous five-day holiday. He knows how to spoil a girl. He just thinks he needs a little fun after his disaster of a ‘would be’ romance with Kirsten.

After a Navy uniform he just wants to go back to what he knows best – flight attendants and perhaps even a pilot. He does like dipping his toe in the office ink so to speak. Get ready for a string of them and each with a slightly different reaction to the last. Some might be more but others just want to have fun.

A spark of attraction for some but again Pierre may see too much into what is in front of him. Some appear to be looking for a night of fun, nothing more. You then have one bold enough to bring him a drink to his hotel room on their layover, getting a nice reward for doing so. Could the reason for doing so be really what it seems? Even crazy flights don’t seem to put a dampener on his style with his layovers ending in the same way.

A chance encounter at his hotel sees him bumping into Jessica, someone in the business but this time corporate flight attendant instead. He might be offering to show her around Harrods to be a nice guy but you know he wants something more. She resists him for a while but a late night knock on the door changes it all. Could this one be ‘the one’? They both seem to be falling for each other this time and he could really help her out career wise. A spanking good time for both it seems, but will it last?

Seems he then wants to go up in the world – pun I know – this time with setting his sights on the Captain of a flight. She may be older but he doesn’t seem to mind. It doesn’t stop his lightning fast attraction he seems to get with most women he meets. This time his wayward thoughts might be all he’s going to get. He gets quite creative with his thoughts, which wouldn’t be so bad, if he wasn’t flying a plane when having them. Spacing out is not a good idea.

He likes to play with fire and closer to the end just kind of comes off as a womanizer and a bit of a hypocrite who doesn’t really care other than getting himself off. He does tend to think with his dick no matter how many times he says he’s looking for love. Seems to be that his heart was lost a while ago to someone he shouldn’t have let go of. Can another chance meeting put him back with her or will he just play the field forever?

Funny how he always seems to miss or mess up the first chance meeting with someone new but second times always the charm. His luck or fate might be holding. Is it love or lust at first sight? When it repeats over and over he may need to rethink his views on finding the one. Just because a woman sleeps with him shouldn’t mean he goes a hundred miles per hour in thinking on what their life could be. Some of these women are relationship material while others just want fun. He is a bit of a Casanova but longs to find his forever girl. With the amount of sex he’s been having he’s not very concerned with contraception though. It seems to slip his mind or not even register until after the fact. It’s a wonder accidents haven’t happened.

Interesting fun read but did get a little repetitive with his antics with any attractive woman he sees. Namely on his flights so he has someone to be with on his layovers. A few relationships along the way but you always knew which one he really wanted to be with. Whether he can keep her is another thing entirely.

3 out of 5 stars

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

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Book Review: ‘Thread and Other Stories’ by Eric Halpenny

Title: Thread and Other Stories

Published: 13th July 2018

Publisher: Bookbaby

Author: Eric Halpenny

Facebook: www.facebook.com/halpennyauthor

Twitter: @dragonswordbook

 

Synopsis:

Thread and Other Stories is a multi-genre collection of short stories (single author) that includes science fiction, fantasy, urban fiction, literary fiction, historical fiction, and espionage. There are seven stories in the collection.

Prudence and her older brother Yannick face extreme poverty and hardship in Thread. They live day to day on the wages they earn at low paying, difficult jobs. They face hardships that seem insurmountable for two young children. Isidore, an impoverished boy trying to survive on his own, enters their lives with even greater needs than Prudence and Yannick. They integrate him into their family life even as their world begins to crumble around them. But, there is an ominous backdrop to these events as strange entities take a keen interest in the lives of the three children.

A military psychologist evaluates a Vietnam war veteran who has experienced psychological damage in Shrink. The veteran’s fellow soldiers and friends must support him as the psychologist attempts to uncover the reasons behind his trauma.

Emil, Annie, and their three children—Zona, Owen, and Abner—struggle to stay safe in a steampunk-inspired fantasy world in Chance. Abner finds himself in trouble as a powerful magical being terrorizes the family farm. Only Zona’s quick thinking along with her parents’ knowledge of magic will give them a chance against the dark sorcery of the enemy.

John and Greg, bound by friendship, embark on a journey of trial and tragedy in Conflict, a 20th Century historical fiction. They must deal with death, loss, and grief as compatriots fall in battle during this poignant snapshot of the Canadian military in World War I. John and Greg show a contrast in the ways that these soldiers adapted to the psychological effects of war.

Veera, an astrophysicist, begins to experience recurring déjà vu, the source of which she cannot determine in Oversight, a science fiction adventure. She is unknowingly set on a collision course with Misha, who challenges Veera’s perception of the world as she struggles to determine what is real and what isn’t. Misha must deal with his own psychological demons as he tries to salvage a failing mission that will either end in glory or in his own death.

Dmitry is a hardened spy in the Cold War who has no mercy for his adversary Olyesa in the espionage thriller Deception. Olyesa and Dmitry navigate their way through the murky waters of agents and double agents while simultaneously struggling against each other for survival. When their divergent plans collide, it threatens to destroy them both.

Explore a metaphysical debate in the literary short story Conversation, which is woven between each of the short stories in this collection. An unnamed protagonist and an unidentified and secretive entity discuss the metaphysical and spiritual meaning behind science and what it means to gain knowledge.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A collection of short stories. All are very different but each have a certain something to keep you intrigued to continue on to the next. Nice style of writing with this collection of shorts.

THREAD

A story connected by conscious thoughts of others perhaps? The main one itself is a trying tale of children living in poverty and having to work just to eat. The mines are for the boys and it’s cleaning for girls. They never feel hope for they can’t see a way out of the cycle they are part of. Work, eat, sleep and repeat. With the eating part sometimes being hard to come by. Yannick protects his sister Prudence but is still a child himself. A saying being you can’t look out for others, as you don’t have enough for yourselves. That’s Yannick’s way of thinking when Isidore comes into their lives. He’s younger than both of them but needs to work to stay alive too. Hardships become them and dangers of the world around them, work included, causes tragic results. Seems conscious minds might be merging to feel something new, hope might be born into their dark lives bringing some light and a connection thread to join them.

SHRINK

The perils of coming back from war and having to live with the consequences of what happened when you were there. A shrink to help the army vets before they go home but sometimes they are too far-gone to come back from the darkness. They need their crew and family to try to bring them round but is that enough?

CHANCE

Well what starts out as an everyday farmers family working life turns into something completely unexpected. Interesting twist with its’ direction and how the story evolves from there. Young minds are inquisitive ones so you should be careful to teach them to understand what’s at stake and not leave books around they might not understand. Creating a doll is one thing but this one had a mind of its own.

CONFLICT

Tales told of the Great War focusing on the Canadians fighting, all showing how and why different people would have signed up. What were they fighting for? Was it King, country, honour, family, friends or perhaps just a mixture of them all? Showing the day-to-day life of the battlefield slowly pulling them under. Two different men’s views on how they see the battle to be won. Who are the lucky ones? Those who go home physically injured, mentally injured, don’t go home at all or the ones who never got called in the first place? The letters or quotes from people who were really there mixing with the story were interesting. Gives you a little insight to what they really experienced.

OVERSIGHT

Two scientists following through with an 18-month task sending and tracking satellites – a link to the Mars project but also a new Jupiter one. Their project is failing and they know they need to go back through notes to find where they went wrong. This is where things get a little strange, as it seems they aren’t the only ones testing something, or should that be someone? Are you the tester or subject and can you tell the difference between the two? Quirky read that will have you questioning what could be out there and who or what everyone really is. Who is controlling whom? Maybe not knowing is the point.

DECEPTION

Spy masters at extracting information out of people. The top of a very select few that needs to stay hidden. Dmitry is one of them and believes he is the one always in control. He gets his pleasure out of tormenting others whether for work or fun. There seems to be no difference for him. He might think he is the one controlling the game but is he the one being played in a complex game of spy vs. spy. Cards are about to fall in a different way and he might not like where they land.

CONVERSATION

A need to have someone to talk to, but are they really there or just in your head? They say they will wait until you are ready to talk. Let’s hope it’s true. For someone to help do you need to be face to face or can they help you from afar? This story is broken up and interlinked between all the others. It gives the impression of time passing between the one who wants to talk but isn’t really ready to as they keep putting up barriers (I must meet you and you’re wrong) and the one who is willing to wait for however long until they are. A philosophical conversation with someone or something – do you really need to see them to talk?

4 out of 5 stars

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

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Book Review: ‘Talon’ by Carian Cole

Title: Talon (Ashes & Embers Book 4)

Published: 22nd November 2015

Author: Carian Cole

Facebook: www.facebook.com/cariancoleauthor

Twitter: @CarianCole

 

Synopsis:

A relationship experiment that lets experts find your perfect spouse? Sign me up. Sounds great, right? I thought so, too…until I saw a rock star waiting at the altar for me. 

DESCRIBE YOUR IDEAL PARTNER:
Caring. Hard-working. A devoted family man, loves kids.
Clean cut, funny, smart, quiet, but a good communicator.
~ Asia Jenson

DESCRIBE YOUR IDEAL PARTNER:
Independent. Tall, blonde, sexy. Outgoing. Intelligent, neat. Unslutty. Confident. Loves to travel. Committed.
~ Talon Valentine

A SOCIAL EXPERIMENT.
The concept was scary but exciting…
Marry a total stranger.
Live together for six months.
Journal everything. (Feelings. Fights. All of it.)
After six months, we each get $50K in trade for our journals, whether we stay married or not. But the goal is to commit to the experience and see if the relationship experts could put together the perfect matches.
I have never been lucky in love. This was my chance to find my soulmate.
I couldn’t wait to meet the man the experts felt was perfect for me.
My hopes were immediately dashed when I saw him at the altar.
Shit. I married my worst nightmare.
Right?!

** This story is not a reality show. It’s a serious social experiment run by a psychologist and it’s all discrete. The characters are not on TV or followed around with cameras. They are alone. This story is a lot more than it seems **

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book over 400 pages. I loved every one of them. So this book revolves around a social experiment to see if relationship experts and psychologists can be used to find someone the perfect partner. Married at first sight to a stranger, what could possibly go wrong? Or maybe that should be so right? Once married you have to live as couple for the next six months, writing and video chatting with the professionals about your experiences along the way. At the end of the experiment you have a choice, you can stay married or divorce. It also comes with a 50k compensation bonus for each at the end no matter what you decide. Four couples are matched and have very different results. So let’s see how Talon and Asia match up and if theirs can be the one made for life.

Describing what you think your perfect partner should be and getting it are two very different things. Talon might be used to having women fall at his feet – the beginning kind of gives that away – but he is about to get a shock from his new wife who not only has no idea who he is but also states that he’s not really her type, well not yet anyway. She’s not his either, to start with that is, but this experiment goes deeper than superficial looks and it seems the ones in charge got it right with Talon and Asia. You might not have put them together to start with but sure do they go. Let’s see if they make it through the wedding night to see what comes next.

Asia is very unsure of herself to start with so keeps thinking that their marriage has a sell by date from day one. Which is something that really starts to piss off Talon. They are married now and he has every intention of making it work or at least giving all he can get. He just needs her to trust him so she can feel the same. He has a few vices that she has strong views on though – alcohol and getting high top of the list – that might cause some issues. Her past also has a strong impact on her present and only when she starts to open up do they connect on a deeper level.

This time round it wasn’t an insta love situation as intimacy is definitely not at the top of Asia’s mind with her new husband. She needs to trust first before going further so they can grow as a couple and Talon needs to learn how to win her over in a different way. It’s what he wanted; it’s just a bit harder than he thought. The hook ups were getting old and he just wanted someone to want to be with him rather than the idea of him from the band. The whole #cocksure band tag being something he wanted to change. His new wife might not be who he would have picked but he isn’t going to let this chance slip through his fingers without trying. She’s his now and the longer they are together the more he sees his true future – one she is very much a part of. Loved the connection that slowly grows between them as you can see them creating a base to start something on. Love the nicknames Tally and jelly bean, think they really loved them too.

Now Asia might have thought her new husband wasn’t her type – tattoos, strong build and long hair – but the longer they are together the more tempted she is to want to touch. Well he is her husband so she is allowed. More so after catching him in the shower where it seems he was using her as inspiration to get a happy ending. Seems the stories about size might need a recount as far as she’s concerned. It’s like he is teasing her with what she could have but not rushing her. She holds back to start with but only when she lets go and claims him as her own does she get the connection they were both chasing. Hot, hot, hotter when things finally get going, shame they don’t run smoothly for long with his part in the band coming into play. Seems he forgot to mention, or rather just forgot in general, that they would be away on tour for a month, right after only being married for two, and partners aren’t invited. After finally connecting to be separated so soon is hard for both of them. She knows there are women who might throw themselves at him but needs to learn that she is all he wants now. Knowing and believing are two different things.

Her past comes back to cause tension in their bubble of pleasure and calm. It doesn’t help when trouble starts brewing for Talon too. With what happens you feel so much for him and what he goes through with how he copes/doesn’t cope. Seems Talon was quick to judge on the basis of something he shouldn’t have seen and Asia needs to fight through barriers put up that would keep her back if she wants to keep what’s hers.

Learned a little more about Asher and his life but not much, enough to want you to delve more. Need a book with him now I think, though I do love catching up with the other guys, especially Storm and Lukas. All the books seem to revolve around each other so it’s fun to see different sides and points of views of similar events. I also like the animal aspect that seems to run along with these books and the little cat Princess Pixie was perfect. Who knew cats and rock stars would be an online hit.

5 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from Give Me Books for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Iconic’ by Xavier Neal

Title: Iconic (Adrenaline Series Book 6)

Published: 30th November 2015

Publisher: Enterwine Publishing

Author: Xavier Neal

Facebook: www.facebook.com/XavierNealAuthorPage

Twitter: @xavierneal87

 

Synopsis:

Infamous McCoy brother Madden, has had a life time of burying secrets and brothers. He’s denied himself the right to picture a better life, especially with the long legged, foul mouth girl he’s loved since he was six. When the inevitable moment to take down the Drug Lord responsible for much of his pain approaches, will Madden just become one more headstone in their graveyard or will he rise to the occasion and become Iconic?

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book with an outstanding hero. Now Madden isn’t a white knight by any means but he is willing to go above and beyond to protect the ones he loves. So hold on for another fun filled ride when he and Knoxie finally collide in the best of ways.

Well it seems that if the Devil’s the one you are hunting you need a few more people at your back. Here’s where the BV MC step in. Seems they are quite reasonable when you give them something they want and in exchange offer up their services for protection. Also due to the Devil having taken something of theirs that they’re happy Madden returned. Now instead of killing them, like the Devil had hoped, they are protecting them. These guys so want Madden to join them, if he wanted to I think they’d just give him a Cut and be done with it, no prospecting, nothing.

With the help of BV MC Madden is also closing in on who tampered with Ben’s breaks. He might have told his brothers to stay out of it but he was never going to let it go until he had the answers as to who and why. He’s the head of the family and is holding onto so much guilt for past events, not all his doings, that he feels he needs to make things right. Thing is with him coming home late, or not at all, Knox just thinks he’s off fucking anything that moves which just riles her right up to the point of ranting in his face. This time though she is going to get a very different reaction from him.

Holy hell I knew it would be explosive when Madden and Knox finally got together but fan me down that was scorching. She knew what buttons to press and it seems the timing was right to push him over the edge. Not that she minds shortly after as he helps her fall over the ledge in a different way. Start of something finally as they have been dancing around each other for years. Madden might have shoved his one night stands in her face but in a way it was to show her that they meant nothing and would never be seen again. Knox on the other hand liked to keep hers hidden from others. They were always just a ‘holding guy’ though until the one she wanted grew a pair and claimed her. Seems he thinks he had good reasons to hold off and they don’t stay hidden when he gets reminded of some of them. He doesn’t think he’s good enough but he is all she has ever wanted, just as she is all he’s ever wanted. Their happily ever after – with fights and lots of make up sex along the way – might have to wait as their troubles with the Devil are far from over.

The race to get the Devil before he gets you is closing in. Trap a rat in a corner and he will attack so you have to see every possible outcome if you want to get out alive. Seems as fast as the Devil is losing friends the McCoy’s are gaining them. Good job too as there is only one way it can really end and that’s with a bullet. Who gets it is another matter entirely.

Before all hell breaks loose I did really like seeing a calmer side to both Madden and Knox when they went to see Knox’s Grandma Maggie. Separately at first and its funny how easily Maggie gets through to them to see things her way. Her saying to Madden that if he wants to ask for Knox’s hand in marriage the answer is the same to when he was 9-years-old. Granny knows best it seems, just took them a lot longer to figure it out.

So we finally we get our Christmas get together at the Commissioners (good to see he now sees things in grey and not just black and white) where the McCoy’s get quite a shock. A ghost from the past is back but this brings some sadness with joy as the news of Daniel is told. Full closure all round with putting the past where it belongs and starting to live the lives they all deserve. McCoy’s love fiercely and once your in your family till the end. Stand by your man; these women wouldn’t have it any other way. Have loved this series from the start with the quirky style of the characters talking back to the reader. Interesting way to get in their heads and another way to make you laugh with them. Loss along the way but the family stays strong till the end – McCoy’s  through in through. If you want a fun packed emotional adrenaline ride with some hot loveable studs then this is the series for you.

5 out of 5 stars

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

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Book Review: ‘Error’ by Xavier Neal

Title: Error (Adrenaline Series Book 5)

Published: 28th October 2015

Publisher: Enterwine Publishing

Author: Xavier Neal

Facebook: www.facebook.com/XavierNealAuthorPage

Twitter: @xavierneal87

 

Synopsis:

Destin McCoy has a flawless reputation behind the keyboard and in the sheets. However when he is put to the test by the Drug Lord who is responsible for his brother’s deaths, he has a choice to make. Save the girl who has helped him heal or take the vengeance he deserves. Will Destin make the right choice or will this just become an error?

 

Review:

Goes down as another of my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book set somewhere you have travelled to. Well Azura goes to London for a bit so I’m going to count it anyway.

So if you didn’t well up with tears at the end of Unmask there is something wrong with you. Triple D has lost a brother, Daniel. Heart goes out to all the McCoy’s as they are slowly being broken down by another loss. Drew has Melody now to help him through and Madden and Knox sort of have something but Destin is feeling very lost and alone. Almost like losing a limb with the loss of Daniel. Not knowing how to be he starts to act like Daniel thinking it might make him feel better. Namely by drinking too much and watching too much porn – don’t judge people. With being the tech savvy one of the family though his mission to destroy everything in the Devils world goes to another level. Closing down banks accounts, getting houses seized and modes of transport taken away. He just needs to be careful how much he pushes because you know the Devil will soon push back. On one of Destin’s drunken nights he ventures out to Mickey’s bar, home away from home, and happens to get a kick start in a new direction. Well more like the day after when he has to apologies for how he treated Azura.

Azura has had a thing for Destin for years but didn’t want to just end up as a ‘Tuesday girl’ like her stepsister was for Daniel – happily so mind you. She wanted to be a forever girl but just needed him to notice her first. She gets that in a way when he’s almost passed out drunk and needing a ride home. This cues in his drunken rudeness by pretty much saying they were going to have sex but only because he looked like Daniel and she couldn’t have him anymore. Cue him getting slapped in the face, which you are happy about. She never went there with Daniel and once morning comes Destin is beyond regretful and needing to go straight over to apologize. Gets an eye full to start with when he does as her stepsister just tells him to go straight on in. A half-naked wake-up call he could get used to. To say sorry he wants to take her out to which she says as a date, which throws him a bit. It’s not that he doesn’t want to; it’s just been so long he’s not sure how to do the dating thing anymore. Shouldn’t worry long because this guy could charm anyone and very quickly stakes his claim on her. Something she can’t stop smiling about. Seems she wasn’t the only one pinning away. It’s great that the longer they are together the more the real ‘them’ comes up to the surface. More so for Destin who is seen as himself for the first time and not just judged as a part of Triple D. They love their unit as brothers but still want to be seen as individuals too.

Chemistry bubbles around them, starts slow but soon it overflows. You can see the pull they have together but more that it’s her pulling him back to the real him after the losses he has had to cope with. Start of something great and hot enough to see the steam rising but this doesn’t stop him from wanting to take down the Devil. Madden may have told them all to back down but he can’t stop. Seems he needed the right push to want to as the Devil targets those you care for most. Azura may soon find herself in his sights but as you know he doesn’t like to get his hands dirty so others will come into play. Things from the past coming back to haunt the present so hold on for another action packed ride with these McCoy’s doing whatever they can to keep those they love safe.

Seriously I need to get to this Christmas dinner because it is going to be emotional. The McCoy’s back together again for a better future. Can’t keep these McCoy’s down for long and something tells me Madden has been up to more than he’s been letting on. Let’s crack on with his story because the sexual tension between him and Knox is getting to volcanic proportions. When they get together I feel it’s going to be epic or better yet Iconic like the title suggests. Can I read all three in one day? Is sleep really needed? Let’s see how far I get. That video at the end too, yep made me want to well up with them.

5 out of 5 stars

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

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Filed under Contemporary Fiction, Reading Challenges, Reading Nook Blog Posts, Romance