Category Archives: Thriller and Suspense

Book Review: ‘Feel.it’ by Ian Wingrove

Title: Feel.it (Tom Barlow Detective Book 2)

Published: 24th March 2017

Author: Ian Wingrove

Facebook: www.facebook.com/IanWingroveWriter

Twitter: @Iwin1961

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/14824260.Ian_Wingrove

 

Synopsis:

Roxanne Payne is the star of The Tournament, a game show that allows its audience of millions to feel what the contestants feel. Only Roxanne doesn’t feel much since the teenage trauma of her mother’s suicide, which is what makes her the Queen of Pain. Retired Met police detective, Tom Barlow, is hired to keep her alive when death threats turn real, and in the process Roxanne becomes his deadly obsession. But is he really willing to risk everything to keep her alive?

Set in a dystopian near future, Tom Barlow’s life is split apart as he tracks killers, protects the woman he loves and re-discovers the man he used to be. Across eighteen days – in a parallel story to the one depicted in Dead Poor – Tom’s life becomes entwined with that of Alexandria (Lex) de Montford, in a world of deceit, double-cross and death. Is she angel or demon? Is Tom all that he pretends to be? ‘And will Roxanne find freedom or death as she approaches the final show?

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2018 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book published in 2017. An interesting book that definitely picks up more at the end. There are a lot of players in this game, so much so that it can take a while to keep track of them all. The main ones stand out more but you can at times feel a little lost as to who people are and how they are connected. Just hold on until the end where all will be revealed.

You have Roxanne (aka Angelique) who is the queen of pain within the Feel.it game show. A part in the show though as ‘Roxanne’ was created and from that has become the shows commodity brand. Making those in power very rich, but not always in control. Others behind the scenes appear to be pulling more strings than first thought. The game show itself has the Tournament Knights take on contestants or Immortal fighters (robots) to see who can fight to the end to be the winner. The suits they wear show where they feel pain from being attacked and the idea is that the people watching can feel that pain too. Tap out when you’ve had too much but it seems Roxanne has closed off from feeling anything (pleasure or pain) making her the champion to beat. The reason for closing off all emotions, and being able to handle any pain, is to do her witnessing her mother’s suicide. A big game is coming up though so she needs to be on her a-game. Seems it’s not just in the show either as death threats and attempts start rolling in. She needs someone to protect her and get her to the final show. But who is really playing the lead in this master’s game of chess?

Tom and his team have been called in by Colonel Malthouse to help manage the situation. They have to first check out what Feel.it security, head guy Ray, have been doing wrong and find a way to watch Roxanne better. Seems the further they are led in one direction with attacks and threats the further they are taken away from what is real and what has been created to look real. Not figuring things out until they smack you in the face. But when things get bad you know they will come through.

Tom’s fascination with Roxanne started from her first appearance on the show and to see her in flesh is a thrill but also an awakening for both of them. She can’t feel and he closed himself off after events in his past went sour. The longer in each other’s presence the more tangled the web gets. Can they trust each other with their secrets as well as their bodies? Seems Roxanne wants to become Angelique again but losing their moneymaker would be bad. This could be one reason for the attacks but it seems others have their reasons too and each intricately link to another.

Will the gamemaster might be playing a game he can’t win and it seems his loyalties to his past, and Roxanne, take a back seat to his future. Ray his right hand man and head of security, namely supposedly protecting Roxanne, was a nasty piece of work and you know he will get his comeuppance. With Alexandria, Lex to a select few, I could never get a feel for what side she was really playing on. Helping the Feel.it company as PR guru for Will or helping her friend Roxanne who is being led down a dangerous path? Only nearer the end that you see she likes to have her hands in a lot of pies but will always look out for her best interests.

A story of lies, intrigue, pain and love. Lets see what players make it to the end.

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: ‘A Solitary Awakening’ by Kevin Cady

Title: A Solitary Awakening

Published: 29th April 2016

Publisher: Lulu Publishing Services

Author: Kevin Cady

Facebook: www.facebook.com/people/Kevin-Cady-Author

Twitter: @kevincadyauthor

 

Synopsis:

Elijah Warren’s world has always been one haunted by murderers. His personal life is non-existent, though it’s not like he’s noticed. Work consumes him, and he’s buried himself in the FBI’s exhaustive demands. There’s no time for romance with killers to track–that is, until the beautiful and erudite Aurelia Blanc is thrown into his life, along with the so-called “Poetic Murderer.”

The Poetic Murderer makes murder an art form, each crime scene an exhibit. To catch him, Elijah and Aurelia must decipher cryptic poems and study imaginative death scenes. They traverse the United States, into the uncharted past of a killer most twisted, whose brutal violence evokes not only empathy for the victims, but an interest in the killer himself.

In time, what these detectives discover about both themselves and the Poetic Murderer will change their lives forever. First, they must understand him. Then, they must stop him, but will a romantic liaison make the killings more personal? If Elijah and Aurelia don’t stay focused, one could end up dead at the hand of a Poetic Murderer.

 

Review:

Murder mystery at its best that will keep you on your toes till the very last page. FBI detectives Aurelia Blanc and Elijah Warren are trying to catch a serial killer – soon to be called the Poetic Murderer – the man in black. Let’s see how the twisted tale starts.

A very intricate story, one that manages to weave the man in blacks murders through a unique timeline. The moment the detectives start following and connecting the kills its almost too late as they have already be planned months/years in advance. They have been methodically planned to the last detail. Leaving breadcrumbs but only if you are smart enough to follow them. Poems from Keats are always left but its not until Aurelia and Elijah start the case that they begin to connect the dots. Might be involved in a twisted killers world but that doesn’t stop the connection being formed between the two. Romance might not be the priority but it is on the cards. More so when they have to watch each others’ backs as the killer might just start targeting them.

Very twisted kills so be wary if you have a delicate imposition, best not read right before bed or you might have some interesting dreams (which I did). The victims aren’t linked in any way, seemingly randomly picked, and the kill locations are never close enough to each other to suggest a link between them. Making it difficult for the detectives to track but not impossible if you know what you are looking for. Which is all the Poetic Murderer is really wanting. To be tracked by the smartest minds who can follow his way of thinking. Has he found who he has been looking for?

You will be trying to figure out whom the killer could be with clues given but not really have all the pieces fall into place until the detectives do. You are figuring things out at the same time, which is good as you then won’t be able to see what’s coming next. Right to the end you will be kept on your toes, which is what you want in a good thriller. It all comes back to the beginning and how it started someone on their path of a solitary awakening. Opening their mind to a new way of thinking in the most twisted of ways.

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: ‘The Sweet Oil of Vitriol’ by Daniel Eagleton

Title: The Sweet Oil of Vitriol: A Tom Glaze Hit Book 1

Published: 23rd February 2017

Author: Daniel Eagleton

 

Synopsis:

Ever get the feeling the staff want to kill you?

After a government sanctioned hit goes spectacularly wrong, Mossad agent Thomas is blamed for the mission’s failure by his superiors, ousted before completing his very first job. Desperate to prove himself, Thomas accepts an offer from his former handler, Yakov, to assassinate Jacob Okonjo, the head of the African Union. It seems Jacob is allowing certain parties to control Africa’s lucrative diamond trade, and in doing so has made some powerful enemies. But like that Mossad hit-team caught on camera in Dubai a few years back, how is Thomas supposed to terminate such a prominent figure without being caught on CCTV? The answer: to work undercover as a room-service waiter at a top London hotel, where, in a few months’ time, Jacob Okonjo will be staying. It’s the perfect plan. Jacob is to be administered an untraceable poison, and afterwards, even if there is an investigation, a trusted member of staff like Thomas will be above suspicion. That’s the idea, anyway. In the meantime, he’s to suffer month after month of boring, menial employment, serving rich, famous people dinner, when he should be making a name for himself amongst the intelligence community. Because you can bet this never happened to Bond or Bourne. Never had to work for tips, subjugating themselves like some average, everyday citizen…

Review:

Spy mystery that will keep you on your toes throughout trying to figure out which way everyone is going to go and what agenda they really have.

Things start out simple enough. Thomas and his team, secret agents hired to take out dangerous people, have been sent on a mission to eliminate someone their government wants gone. Thomas has been sent in advance to get a lay of the land and figure out the best plan of action for when the hit will go down. Their target is a tricky person to pin down with locations, times and whether decoys will be in play. So his task is to figure out every possible scenario before the team, and then their target, gets there. Would seem like a walk in the park for Thomas but he seems to have a little problem with the ladies. In that he can’t seem to stay away from them. Its because of this that the team comes in early to check on his focus, or lack there of. Things go from bad to worse when the time comes to take their target out.

Hit gone wrong and it seems and Thomas and his team are going to take the fall. Well mainly Thomas as he’s the only one that gets caught up with what goes down putting him in the hospital. It seems Uri, the tech guy, is the only one really helping Thomas when everything goes tits up. Even his handler Yakov has taken a bit of a back seat while waiting for the dust to settle. He needs to get out of the hospital before the police arrive, even if he isn’t 100%. Side note when you don’t have the right documents to go back to the hospital it seems wire cutters and a meat tenderizer will do.

Out of the company but not the trade Thomas and Uri go to Yakov to get a new job. Thomas might be wanted but he needs to redeem himself. A new target is set, one with a big payout, but he needs to be clever this time so no one suspects him. Poison is the key and to push any suspicion off him he is going to have to actually work as the waiter and not pose. Seven months till the hit gets to London so by then he should be a natural.

Once an agent always an agent seems to be Thomas’ motto. Said motto seems to attract trouble though. Mainly when a woman is involved. This time the hotels front desk clerk Nadine. Seems she’s in deep with some bad men and Thomas wants to help. The fact that he’s spent the last few months mooning over her being a bit of a key reason. Really he should know better by now. She can see him and his friends for who they really are so you just know a HEA isn’t on the cards.

I could never really get a feel for Yakov. Something was off with him from the start. I always got the feeling that no matter what he was going to throw Thomas under the bus so to speak. Just seems to take Thomas a little longer to figure out. For an agent he didn’t seem very focused with his mission but that could be because he was left to his own devices for so long waiting for his target. Seems trouble is brewing from more than one angle and he is just playing catch up to see it through.

Seemed to pick up more near the end when the chaos seemed to grow. Think the everyday life of him working at the hotel and then his on/off again thing with Nadine seemed to drag a bit. Women definitely seem to be his weakness and if he wants to continue what he’s doing then he’s going to need to work on that. Intriguing paced thriller with a bit of a difference.

For a lot of it I found either he, she or they seemed to be missing from sentences. Almost like you just would assume they were there so added them anyway in your mind while reading. A few other spelling mistakes and errors throughout (‘She put his hand on his’ instead of ‘She put her hand on his’) but nothing too major, just enough to stand out through rest of clean edit.

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: ‘Acadia’s Law’ by Tracy Ellen

Title: Acadia’s Law (Undying Love Series Book 1)

Published: 20th July 2014

Author: Tracy Ellen

Facebook: www.facebook.com/TracyEllenauthor

Twitter: @TracyEllen01

 

Synopsis:

A SMART, GUTSY HEROINE & A HERO HOT ENOUGH TO DIE FOR!

Except Acadia King has no intentions of dying soon for a man or anything else.

Rave reviews for Acadia’s Law, Book One in the Undying Love Series, a paranormal/science fiction/ horror/apocalyptic-romance you won’t want to miss!

Rod “Ram” Ramaldi is a pro football quarterback newly arrived in the Twin Cities to begin the next phase of his career. Acadia King is a young widow out for the evening at a hotel cocktail bar for the first time in years. With nothing to lose, she’s about to hook up with Rod, a perfect stranger–a perfectly sexy but totally inappropriate, much younger stranger. Acadia’s also about to discover her inner badass when a group of people in the bar suddenly turn into violent crazies and start attacking the other patrons.

As the attacks become more widespread, Acadia soon realizes she has everything left in life to lose. Determined to make it home, Acadia brings along a few survivors from the hotel, including Rod. But the violent crazies aren’t the only deadly predators roaming the land. Can Acadia and Rod survive in a world gone insane overnight? Get your copy of Acadia’s Law today and see why fans are saying this adult series is the apocalypse and love done right!

 

Review:

When Acadia agrees to go out on a date (well she says date but really she is just going to see if anyone takes her fancy) after her friends convince her its time to get back out there after the death of her husband she goes along with it thinking ‘well what’s the worst that could happen?’ If by worst you are thinking crazed people attacking everyone and those seemingly dead coming back to life as zombies you would be correct. She does get to work her inner minx before the real crazy stuff happens though so it’s not all bad at the beginning. After doing a circle of the hotel bar she has gone out of town to she spots her target. Well his hotness kind of grabbed her attention and wouldn’t let go, good job it goes both ways then. He might be with a group but no one looks paired up so it’s not long before she makes her move. She sure works fast getting him hooked but it’s when he gets her in the lift that things start to heat up in a very fun way. Now this would be the point to get into a room and have hours more fun but a lack of key card brings them back to the hotel bar.

Now this is where things start to go a little crazy, very fast. A group of people – the same ones she assumed were either drunk or high when she spotted them earlier – comes into the room with blood all over them. Always the practical one she tries to express her fears about them to Rod, her lift hottie, insisting they all leave while showing her gun in her purse in the process. After the initial shock of the people in the bar its not long before people rush to help the blood covered ones – including two of the girls from Rod’s table. He stops one getting close but isn’t quick enough for the other. Queue crazy time as its like a switch has been flipped and the brutal attacks start.

Talk about graphic craziness and what do the guys do, they run straight into the thick of it leaving Acadia with one very scared woman clinging to her for dear life. It’s a fight to get out but that’s just the start of it. She knows she just wants to get home but now feels like a mother hen with getting Rod, his two friends T-Bone and Ray Dean, and Barbara there too. When she says her place is like a fortress she means it but work needs to be done to make it even better protected. Its like a call to arms when she wants everyone rounded up. Love that she has a kind of ‘what to do if’ folder with ways to deal with certain attacks or events. Shame she doesn’t have a ‘what to do in the event of a zombie attack’ but hey she can improvise. She has gone into mission mode from the moment she is home but that doesn’t stop Rod wanting some answers about who she really is. Zombie attack or not he clearly still wants her and is constantly trying to win her with his charm and very good looks. Think its funny how she thinks he is too young for her (11 years to be exact) when she was 25 years younger than her husband. She can’t think straight around him but he won’t be giving up that easily, no matter the craziness that follows.

A very interesting group of people coming together on the farm getting battle ready for what’s to come. She can hold about a hundred but many more would cause too much attention. It might not just be the zombies they need to keep out either but the non-bitten too – especially those on bikes.

Interesting read that gets you gripped quickly as after that first attack its full speed ahead. Lots of characters mentioned which might make you feel a little lost at times but its to help set up the rest of the series. Suspense and romance read with zombies and crazy bikers thrown in for good measure – talk about a crazy ride. Lets see where it takes us next.

4 out of 5 stars

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Book Review: ‘Of Fear and Faith’ by N. D. Jones

Title: Of Fear and Faith (Death and Destiny Trilogy Book 1)

Published: 18th August 2014

Publisher: Siren Publishing

Author: N. D. Jones

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ndjonesparanormalromanceauthor

Twitter: @ndjonesauthor

 

Synopsis:

A thriller of a paranormal romance with mystery, mythology, and suspense.

Before trust and love can take hold, grow solid roots, and blossom into a reality larger than self, fear must be conquered and faith embraced. Yet fear of an ancient prophecy, of burning magical power, and a broken heart, Sanura Williams, psychology professor, is unprepared when Special Agent Assefa Berber enters her life, hunting a preternatural serial killer. Assefa’s intelligent, chocolate eyes and intoxicating aura signature stirs her fire spirit but frightens the woman.

In a world where all is not as it seems, Sanura and Assefa must battle the gods’ first creations – vile predators who threaten the safety of humans. Each confrontation, each bloody clash, will bring Sanura and Assefa closer to fulfilling the prophecy of being the Fire Witch and Cat of Legend – the ones who will save humanity from the Water Witch of Legend. Death, godly magic, and physical attraction draw Sanura and Assefa to each other, but fear and faith will determine their destiny.

 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2017 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book with vampires in it. These ones are bat like creatures that you would not want to meet in a dark alley.

Seems a battle amongst sisters – one that takes place every 500 years – is about come around again. The prophecy goes that a fire witch born to the Temple of Oya and a water witch born to the Temple of Mami Wata will mark the beginning of the end, but also rebirth. It’s all about balance and once they fight, no matter who wins, there will be peace for humans again – but at what cost? 500 years is almost up and it looks like the pieces are being put in place, whether they are ready for what’s to come is something else entirely.

FBI Special Agent Assefa Berber, from a very special division because of what he is, has been called in to investigate the murders of a possible serial killer. It was Mike, a local detective and something a little different himself, who spotted a pattern and called for assistance. Well not that he really wants the have help as his likes to work alone now. The link between the murders is like the elephant in the room as neither yet wants to tell the other what they really are and that they both know they are after someone who is killing witches. All this comes to a head though after the latest attack. There is a lone survivor of a double murder, the daughter, who was found wondering that streets covered in blood. They need someone who can get through to the child so they can figure out who or what they are after and Mike knows just the person, his goddaughter Sanura.

Sanura is a psychology professor but so much more as she is also a witch – a very powerful fire witch that is. She may have been called in to help with the case but that’s not all that is on the cards for her when she senses an intoxicating aura signature coming straight from Assefa. Seems with their kind can tell when they are near someone who could be compatible and auras never lie. Auras are one thing to suggest they are matched but the chemistry coming from both of them within minutes is enough to seal the deal. Well if Sanura wasn’t running a little scared from a past relationship that burned her badly it would. Ended for a reason girl and that’s because he was not for you, plus he’s a bit of a dick. Focus pulled back to the case at hand she needs to see what or whom the child saw. When they know though they might wish they hadn’t because the killer(s) they are after are adze.

Adze are vampire like creatures with the body of a large bat that can transform into human form. Done so with more ease after consuming witches blood. With the blood comes the magic and it seems that is something they have started to crave. In the past adze would just possess witches to cause chaos and attack humans but found a thirst for blood gave them more power – specifically witches’ blood. The warlocks at the time wanted to protect their woman so made a deal with Sekhmet. If they worshipped her then she would give them the ability to protect their women. They just didn’t really realize what they might be giving up at the time of gaining something different. With adze being the killers it means witches in the area need to be put on high alert. With the help of Sanura and her skills they might just be able to hide those that are being hunted and then trap the hunters in the process. Well nothing is ever that simple.

The adze need to be caught but that doesn’t stop the need to perform the ritual to see if Sanura and Assefa really are compatible in every sense. From the moment they locked eyes it was pretty much a done deal to me but rules are rules. The chemistry and heat is there but they are both hiding secrets that they fear will make the other run. If they can face them then they might be able to fight not only the adze but be better prepared for the true battle that’s coming. Sanura’s ex Richard also comes back on the scene the stir things up, I had a feeling he was a lot more involved in the case than you might think. He may want Sanura back but now Assefa is in the picture that is looking a lot less likely. Will he get his just desserts? I’m hoping so.

Interesting read that has a bit of everything that I like. You have witches, were-cats, vampires and links to Egyptian Gods and Goddesses. A battle is brewing and the players are slowing moving into place but the outcome is very uncertain. Here’s hoping Sanura and Assefa can handle anything that is thrown their way.

4 out of 5 stars

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

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