Second Time Around, written by H.A. Caine, is a very brief romance novella of only 33 pages. However, H.A. uses those 33 pages skillfully to tell the...moreSecond Time Around, written by H.A. Caine, is a very brief romance novella of only 33 pages. However, H.A. uses those 33 pages skillfully to tell the brief story of Jamie and his roommate, John. John has thrown a party for Jamie who is finally realizing his dream of opening his own bakery, Delightful Sins. While at the party, Jamie meets one of the owners of the nearby home improvement shop, Matthew. Jamie finds himself smitten but he’s relatively certain that Matthew believes he is a woman.
Second Time Around is a very quick read that was very entertaining. It definitely left me wanting more and wondering what happens next. Not to say that she leaves it with a cliff-hanger because H.A. wraps the story line up nicely, it’s just that I found myself fully involved in the plot and with the characters (yes, even in 33 pages!) that I wanted more. For me, that’s a sign of a good author.
I for one, was very pleased with Second Time Around and even if H.A. Caine doesn’t choose to continue with this story later down the line (I have no idea if she will or not.), I will definitely watch for more from this author in the future. (less)
The Clark Kent Chronicles, written by Pamela Fagan Hutchins, are a collection of essays/blog posts taken from Hutchins’ personal blog, www.pamelahutch...moreThe Clark Kent Chronicles, written by Pamela Fagan Hutchins, are a collection of essays/blog posts taken from Hutchins’ personal blog, www.pamelahutchins.com, which focus for the most part on her Asperger’s/ADHD son, Clark Kent.
Pamela Fagan Hutchins is a wonderfully funny, intelligent, and honest mother whom just so happens to be blessed with a son with ADHD and Asperger’s Syndrome. Her honesty was refreshing and in each essay, she made me feel that much less alone. While Hutchins was quick to share her brilliant insights into the joys of the world of special needs parenting, she was just as willing to share the difficulties with often humorous out-comes.
Overall, I cannot say that I have a single complaint about The Clark Kent Chronicles. I love how even though Hutchins’ uses their given names for her other children, she still sticks with the nickname she dubbed “Clark” with when her blog began. I love how while reading Chronicles I felt for the first time that I was not the only parent out there fumbling in the dark. There are many, many of us all in the same room fumbling to raise our children, tweens and teens with special needs together. Then to make a great book even better Hutchins’ is kind enough to include a list of any and all resources for parents of children with ADHD for high school, coping and college that either she could think of or knew existed.
If you are a parent of a child with ADHD or Asperger’s Syndrome, a family member, family friend or you know a child/tween/teen with ADHD or Asperger’s Syndrome I recommend this book. Hutchins will entertain you while giving valuable insight into the workings of a special needs mother and all that it takes to help our children along pass the obstacles of life. Heck, even if you lack a single tie to anyone with ADHD and/or Asperger’s Syndrome and you are simply looking for a good book that will make you laugh; I recommend this book. Hutchins will not disappoint you.
I received a free copy of The Clark Kent Chronicles, written by Pamela Fagan Hutchins, to read and review. I am in no way committed to writing a positive review; all reviews are my own thoughts and opinions. I am disclosing this information in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”(less)
Deadly Addiction, written by Kristine Cayne, is an outstanding novel earning a solid 5 out of 5 stars. Before reading Cayne’s Deadly Vices series, I h...moreDeadly Addiction, written by Kristine Cayne, is an outstanding novel earning a solid 5 out of 5 stars. Before reading Cayne’s Deadly Vices series, I had never read an actual romantic thriller/mystery. I had read plenty of romances with a slight plot twist to keep things interesting and keep the novel from revolving around love, sex, and “soul mates”. Never have I read romance novels written with the talent and skill that Cayne possesses.
First off, I need to say that the characters are brilliant. Cayne gives the opportunity to get to know the characters through many different sets of eyes, as the story is told through many different viewpoints. Typically, this isn’t something I am a fan of; however, she pulls it off without creating confusion.
Each character is unique and has many different layers, creating believable individuals who stir the most basic of human emotions. Rémi Whitedeer and Alyssa Morgan were by far my favorite characters. I loved them individually – their struggles and inner-demons, as well as their triumphs and compassion. I also love the way the two played off each other.
The way that Cayne told each character’s back-story a little bit at a time, rather than all at once in the beginning of the novel or upon introduction was a refreshing change. It left a slight air of mystery about the characters and helped them to feel more life-like.
The final aspect of Deadly Addiction that I want to mention is, honestly, just how addicting this novel is! Much like it’s predecessor (which I was thrilled to find Addiction wasn’t a literal sequel to Obsession), Addiction is a fast paced, romance and action packed novel; however, not to the point of being over-whelming. It’s attention grabbing and once it has your attention it doesn’t let go until the final pages. While the action and suspense is definitely there and there are your standard lulls in the adrenaline and the romance also helps to break up the thrill seeking, adrenaline-rushing. These lulls help the novel to find that perfect medium between “nail-biting suspense/mystery” and “sappy sex-driven romance” novel. What you find in the end, is sheer perfection and I’m not quite sure how I’m going to make it until the next novel comes out.(less)
Ria Milanez and her best friend, Paula Arnolds, are preparing to start the final step of their young adult lives…their educations at the University of...moreRia Milanez and her best friend, Paula Arnolds, are preparing to start the final step of their young adult lives…their educations at the University of Magic. While Ria is looking forward to her education, she especially excited by the ideas of making friends, attending parties and dating…someone with the same magical inclination as herself, of course. Paula has a completely different set of plans laid out before her. She is looking forward to the opportunity to study individuals with the “magic disease” and she has her eye on one individual with the magical disease in particular, Adrian Liandre, a fellow classmate. Paula may believe that Adrian is safe, good looking and all things dreamy in the universe. Yet, it’s Ria who finds that she may need Adrian’s help and understanding in ways which she isn’t entirely comfortable with, nor does understand them.
When I first started reading Dangerous, Book One of the Elemental Preservers Series, written by Alycia Linwood, I really wanted to like it. The plot idea was original and intriguing and I was excited to have the opportunity to read it. Unfortunately, my desires and expectations were way off the mark on this one.
Ms. Linwood has the potential to make this a good series. About two-thirds of the way through the novel, the plot finally began to smooth out and become the outstanding novel I knew it could be. Prior to that point, it was a roller coaster of inconsistent writing and too little show vs tell.
For the first two-thirds of the novel, I really wanted to like it. I wanted to be able to write a glowing review. What I got, was a novel set in a high school/junior college, which felt like it was a repeat of high school for me. It was drawn out, tired and just painful at times with cursing, frequent excessive drinking, which of course led to getting drunk. All of these things came together to create a novel that was juvenile and felt forced.
Now Dangerous had its share of issues, I’m not denying that; however, there are positives as well.
The main characters are very likable and easy to relate to. Ria is up-tight, slightly boy-crazy with her priorities in the right order – friends, boys, studies. Her best friend, Paula, is Ria’s polar opposite in every way. Paula is studious, easy going, and while she does set her sights on one boy, she will never be mistaken for a boy-crazy teenager. The only thing I wish I had more of where the characters are concerned was background. I wish I knew more about them – where they came from, what they like, what they don’t like, what makes them tick (besides boys or studying). As much as I liked the characters and could relate to them, I also felt as if I hardly knew them.
Then for that final third of Dangerous, I simply couldn’t get enough. I couldn’t find enough time to read. I wanted more! It felt like Ms. Linwood had finally found her voice and knew exactly what she wanted to say. The dialog became more natural and flowed easily with the context of the novel itself. As if someone had flipped a switch, the novel suddenly clicked. It all came together. In my opinion, the final third of the novel is what saves it from mediocrity. If not for that magical piece (pardon the magic pun), the novel would have been a shell of what it could have been.
As for the sequels, I’ll likely read the next one for a few reasons. First, I want to see where she takes things from here. Most importantly, I’ll read the second novel to see if Ms. Linwood manages to maintain the momentum she found in the end of Dangerous and carry it over into Book Two. If she can carry it over, there is hope for the series. If she loses it, I likely won’t read past Book Two.
If you are looking for a paranormal novel with magic, witches, wizards and all other things magical, then I would suggest you check out the Harry Potter series, if you haven’t read them already. Also if you are an older teen or a young adult (early twenties), then you might enjoy the House of Night series by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast. It’s also about magic but it tends to have some rather intense situations that aren’t really appropriate for teenagers or younger teenagers. Overall, it’s a fantastic series and I highly recommend it.
I was given this novel by the author to read and give an honest review.(less)
For Lyla Mercer, life couldn’t possibly get any better. She has a best friend and a boyfriend who love her and a newly secured spot on the Varsity Che...moreFor Lyla Mercer, life couldn’t possibly get any better. She has a best friend and a boyfriend who love her and a newly secured spot on the Varsity Cheerleading Squad. Yup, life is darn near perfect. Until a freak, car accident murders her father on her “perfect day”. That one tragedy sets into motion a chain of events that Lyla never could have imagined. The question is, is she ready to accept all that she’s about to learn?
When I started to read A Marked Past, written by Leslie Deaton, I was immediately taken with how skillfully she was able to capture not only my attention but my emotions, as well. From the first sentence of chapter one, I was hooked. However, I wasn’t expecting such an emotional roller coaster ride right from the start. I found myself so wrapped up in the plot and the emotions of Lyla’s story that I actually had to put the novel aside for a few days and take a break because reading it was leaving me ‘emotionally raw’. (Yes, I can really be that big a sap.) Sappiness aside, I have never had a novel affect me that quickly.
The only issue I really had with A Marked Past were the frequent typo’s which occasionally made reading the novel a bit more difficult. However, they were honestly more of an annoyance and slightly unprofessional in appearance than anything else. And truly, in the grand scheme of all things novel related if that’s the only complaint I have (and it is!) then there isn’t much to worry about.
Typo’s aside, I was hooked and invested from line one; I couldn’t wait to sit down each night and read on to uncover more of Lyla’s story. While parts of the plot were fairly easy for me to figure out before they were revealed; there were still plenty of twists and turns to keep me guessing and on my toes.
I found it to be a quick read. The slower a novel is, the more likely it is to lose my interest and A Marked Past was the perfect speed for me. The plot kept moving pretty quickly only slowing down in a few spots and even in the ‘slow spots’ the story held relevant information concerning plot line or characterization.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed A Marked Past. I know I’ll reread it again in the future, probably numerous times, which I often do with novels I particularly enjoy. I’m already anxious for the next book, A History Renewed: Book Two of The Mercer Legacy, so I can see how the next ‘chapter’ of Lyla’s life unfolds.
If you are a fan of the House of Night series, written by P.C. & Kristin Cast, A Marked Past (The Mercer Legacy) is a good match. Especially if you found the House of Night series to be a bit more ‘R’ than ‘YA’, A Marked Past is definitely a good place to start.
I received a free copy of A Marked Past, written by Leslie Deaton, to read and review.(less)
Svala would do anything for the love of her life, Viggo. This is something that has held true for ages. But what will Svala do when confronted with th...moreSvala would do anything for the love of her life, Viggo. This is something that has held true for ages. But what will Svala do when confronted with the possibility that all that she holds true, may not be as it appears?
Nordic Fairies is a very brief 39 page novella written by Saga Berg. However, he handles the length of his novella and the future continuations in a rather unique manner. Berg suggests that if the reader enjoyed Nordic Fairies they simply follow Berg’s Facebook page. In doing so, the reader is then notified every time there is a sequel released. Allowing them to chat with fellow fans and keep apprised of updates all in the same spot.
I wasn’t sure what to expect from Nordic Fairies before I began. It truly takes a gifted author to weave a tale with enough depth – of both plot and characters alike – within the confines of 39 pages. I was cautiously optimistic and Saga Berg delivered on both fronts.
Berg’s main characters are well thought out. With plenty of depth, both in the present situation and in just enough back stories to help the reader fully connect with them without feeling like they are living in the past. He is incredibly descriptive, with an attention to detail that really helps to bring the characters and places alive.
When I had finished reading, Nordic Fairies, I found myself hungry for more of the story. The initial installment of the Nordic Fairies story is about as long as a chapter in a book, which leaves me curious as to how long the story in its entirety will be. No matter the length, I know I will be on the edge of my seat awaiting my Facebook message(s) informing me of each new addition. (I was given a copy of this novella by the author to read and review.)(less)
It all started innocently enough for Dr. Nicole Salem, just another day “at the office”. If your office happened to be, the Deserts of Egypt and you h...moreIt all started innocently enough for Dr. Nicole Salem, just another day “at the office”. If your office happened to be, the Deserts of Egypt and you happened to be an archeologist working in the ruins of an ancient Egyptian temple. That’s when things go from “just another day” to “staring down your own destiny” in the blink of an eye. Leaving Dr. Nicole Salem with a destiny she didn’t know was possible and enemies coming from all sides. As she learns what is to be who is she is, Sekhmet’s Light.
Akhet, The Inundation is book one in Sekhmet’s Light Trilogy written by H.L. Reasby. Reasby is a talented author with a firm grasp of both conversation and descriptive narrative. She is very detailed in her descriptions of characters and settings, which gives the reader a feeling of being included in the story. I’ve never had the pleasure of visiting Egypt; however, H.L. Reasby’s description left me feeling as if I could smell the air of the market place.
Her description of her characters covered every last detail so flawless that I felt as if I knew them nearly as well as I know myself. I also appreciated the ‘Dramatis Personae’ in the end of the book. I’ve read other novels where the authors have tried to include something similar before the novel even began and all it did was serve to confuse me for the first few chapters because I didn’t know who to look for. So Kudos for that!
If I’m honest, as much as I enjoyed Akhet, The Inundation, I had one major issue. The novel as a whole left me feeling a bit “time warped”. Basically, what I mean is this, so much would happen in a few pages that it felt to me as if 20, 30 or 40 pages had been read. In fact, I had read maybe 10 pages. At other times, things would move at a slower pace and the opposite would occur. I felt sure that 10 pages had been read; when in fact, I had read 40 pages or more. You would think that the two would cancel each other out. They don’t. They left me feeling like I was reading for hours at a time and hardly making any progress at all. A book that should have taken me a few days to read, took me 10 days.
Overall, “time warp” issues aside, I enjoyed Akhet, The Inundation. I mean yeah, it took me longer than usual to read but in the end, it did what it should and that’s get me hooked. I’m now invested in Dr. Nicole Salem’s life. I want to see how she handles this new twist destiny has thrown her way. I want to see if she beats the bad guys. I want to see if the girl can have her destiny, save the day and maybe find love too.(less)