A full-length, standalone, sweet and sexy (oh my lord, Linden) friends-to-lovers romance. It's not new adult, since the characters are in their thirtiA full-length, standalone, sweet and sexy (oh my lord, Linden) friends-to-lovers romance. It's not new adult, since the characters are in their thirties, but that still doesn't mean you have a clue what you're doing when it comes to love. That shit messes you up at any age.
This was a joy to write, a lot of fun, and I hope you all enjoy it too :)
Note: there are no crazy mindfucks, plot twists, people being raped or killed or dying for no reason or totally heart-wrenching scenes that will leave you crying for days after. This is NOT that kind of book. There is a hero with a dirty talking mouth though (18+)
Coming: December 28th, maybe earlier, on Amazon. Due to holiday scheduling, it won't be on B&N, iTunes or Kobo until around the 30th (but it *will* be available on all platforms)....more
Short but engrossing. Well-written, though I could have used a lot more resolution at the end of this book. More3.5 compelling and page-turning stars.
Short but engrossing. Well-written, though I could have used a lot more resolution at the end of this book. More length overall would have really helped with a sense of closure, especially with the relationship between the MC, Ames, and her mother. It felt rushed, hence the stars off. But anyway, I digress...
This is not a romance at all but a look into one affable teenager's life as it comes crumbling around her and the solace she finds in a very bad boy.
But don't let the term bad boy fool you. Marc is a bad, nasty, slimy, low-life dude who seems like Prince Charming at first - enough that you'll fall for him too. Then the rug gets pulled out from under you and his real personality comes through - mean, ruthless and sociopathic. Don't get me wrong, I love crazy guys but this was not the same at all. We love the crazy killers/drug lords/criminals because they love the heroine and they have humanity somewhere inside their crusty souls. Marc was a soulless predator who takes our heroine, Ames, on a ride, preying on her weaknesses in order to exploit her. It's frightening how easily she falls for it too, but if you were in her love-starved position, you might do the same. All over the world, girls - teenage, adult, middle-aged, whatever - are being sucked into abusive relationships and worse thanks to the same tactics that Marc uses on her.
It's not an easy book to read at times - you really, really want Ames to catch a break. You want her old friends to get a red-hot poker shoved up their ass. You want to hit her parents repeatedly until some sense is knocked into them. Then maybe kick the mother again.
You don't, however, want them to die.
But does Ames? What is her breaking point, exactly? And how is Marc going to lead her down a very dark and disturbing road?
Well, you know I love nothing better than a knock-your-socks off ghost story. And while this was entertaining, I was never actually scared (tho3 stars
Well, you know I love nothing better than a knock-your-socks off ghost story. And while this was entertaining, I was never actually scared (though I read it on a flight from London to Vancouver a few weeks ago and that wasn't exactly a creepy atmosphere). The premise is one we have read before - the governess goes to work in a creepy house for creepy kids. Think Jane Eyre meets The Others. But it just didn't have the same sort of mystery or intrigue as those works. The MC was very likeable, as were all the characters in the book, and the writing worked. But as a whole, it felt unoriginal and weak. I wanted to be wowed, I wanted more creepiness...I wanted a book that was a little bit more adult than it actually read (it's not YA, but it kind of read like it for some reason).
That all said, I read it in one sitting and not just because I was stuck on a plane with nothing else to do. It was enjoyable and I think if you're a young reader (teenager) with an interest in historical novels and a low-tolerance for scares, it may be perfect for you. Three stars means I liked it and I can honestly say I did, even if it did fall short of what I wanted from it.
Soooo it looks like I'm in the minority here for rating this book high but whatever, ain't no shame in loving what you love.
Yes5 tart and tangy stars.
Soooo it looks like I'm in the minority here for rating this book high but whatever, ain't no shame in loving what you love.
Yes, The Lemon Grove is very scandalous and immoral, but that's exactly why I picked it up at the bookstore (plus the UK cover is to die for). I love stories that are taboo, and no, cheating in fiction doesn't bother me (especially if there's a bit of karma involved). You may not like the main character, though you may also relate at times. And yeah, the "lust interest" is an douchecanoe with a capital "D." But, the writing was beautiful, poetic and atmospheric and I literally could not put it down. Literally. Like, I was in Dublin at the Guinness factory and I was reading it while standing in line. To me, it was that engaging. I HAD to know what was going to happen next.
I even appreciated the ending, though I had to read the last few pages a few more times to really get the sense of what was going to happen after it said "The End" but you knew things weren't going to be that easy after everything that had just transpired. Would I have liked some more closure? Sure. But I think I can figure it out for myself, too.
Overall, if you're open-minded and are looking for an adult read that will test your boundaries over what's appropriate, don't mind characters you could end up hating, and want to be transported to Mallorca with beautiful prose and vivid imagery, scoop this baby up.
PS usually I relate more to books written in 1st person rather than 3rd, but I think because this was done in 3rd, really helped me look past the MC's behaviour. It was like the equivalent of watching a train wreck, instead of actually being in the train wreck. As the reader you were just an observer along for the ride and any of the consequences weren't yours to deal with......more
WHAAAT?! Scully wrote a book? And it sounds awesome?! Granted, it seems she had help with it, but I don't care. I love Gillian! *gimme gimme* #XFilesFWHAAAT?! Scully wrote a book? And it sounds awesome?! Granted, it seems she had help with it, but I don't care. I love Gillian! *gimme gimme* #XFilesFan4Life...more
If I'm basing the review on my enjoyment factor as I read the book, I'd say a 4.5 or a 5. It read fast, kept me engrossed, I liked t3.5 stars.
If I'm basing the review on my enjoyment factor as I read the book, I'd say a 4.5 or a 5. It read fast, kept me engrossed, I liked the characters and the way the romance was handled. Also, some scary and intriguing zombie apocalypse shit.
Then I reached the end and I closed the book and went, "Neat."
Then, THEN, I started thinking...
"wait...what the hell just happened? What happened to the elaborate book the nuns had or what happened to the girl in red and what happened to her mother and what happened to this person and what happened to that person and what actually happened in the world and, and, and..."
And so on, and so on.
Simply put, this book rivals LOST in the "most unanswered questions" category.
You made Jack cry, Ms. Ryan!
Anyway, I have the next two books in a signed set so I will probably read them too. But I hear I better not expect answers from them either, just as I'll never know what the deal with Walt was. Why was he talking backward in a forest, soaking wet??
I liked this strange little book. I had a lot more to say about it back when I read it last year, actually quite a bit more. Alas, I never wrote it doI liked this strange little book. I had a lot more to say about it back when I read it last year, actually quite a bit more. Alas, I never wrote it down and my scatterbrain can't recall anything, so I'll just have to do a quickie. Quickies are great if they get the job done.
Some Quiet Place was unique and at times challenging. I enjoyed the relationships between the MC and the character of Fear (though I kept picturing Spike from Buffy), the complexity of her family life, and her most interesting affliction - the fact that she doesn't feel emotion.
At times it bordered on paranormal romance, others it felt like a coming-of-age, maybe all these elements together made it stand out from the pack. The mystery surrounding her past, however, was the main draw to me flipping through the pages, though the romance with Fear was a nice - if not primary - plot.
I mean, damn, when a guy whose job it is is to terrorize the world falls in love, there's nothing so...challenging as that.
It was also well-written and compelling, a huge plus for me. It wasn't perfect - there were a few confusing timelines and moments and maybe a plot hole or two - but not so distracting that I couldn't recommend this to a YA reader who wants a bit of mystery and a change from the cookie cutter set-ups....more
3.5 stars. Rounding up so people stop being mad at me for not LOVING the book.
Anyhoo....you really want to know my thoughts?
A good, entertaining read.3.5 stars. Rounding up so people stop being mad at me for not LOVING the book.
Anyhoo....you really want to know my thoughts?
A good, entertaining read. Not great. Not MIND-BLOWING. Apparently I'm a freak for not "getting" this book like everyone else did. *shrug* I got it. I just don't see the tragedy in it, at all. In total, an engaging story that's extremely well-written about the futility of first love and, well, how sometimes life really sucks. I liked it but didn't love it and was just a tad disappointed when it was over - not over the ending, I didn't have any problem with that at all. I appreciated the ending. It was realistic and totally appropriate (but don't get me started over what the end is "really" supposed to mean, because dude, I don't care either way). I just kept expecting for the big "WOW THAT'S WHAT EVERYONE IS TALKING ABOUT" and it never came.
Take a read for yourself, especially if you're a sucker for "first loves" - I am definitely not a fan of that. As I said, very well-written and thoughtful. Just not what I thought it would be. And I don't in anyway think I am hating on the book. Just my opinion.
And I'm in the minority anyway.
And I have an empty space where my heart should be....more
"The heart is wild - isn't that what rib cages are for?"
I heard that quote the other day and it made me realize how much it relates to this book. Beca"The heart is wild - isn't that what rib cages are for?"
I heard that quote the other day and it made me realize how much it relates to this book. Because the heart doesn't listen to reason nor does it want to be tamed. The heart is made to love and it will love whoever it fucking pleases.
Your heart has an open mind...and coming into this story, you should too.
This isn't horror.
This isn't scary (although love is terrifying).
This isn't suspenseful or paranormal.
This is real life.
Real life is about heartbreak. About finding yourself and finding others in the most inconvenient circumstances.
It's about taking risks, taking chances, and learning to fly.
My short story - Defying the Dust - featuring Ellie Watt and Camden McQueen when they first met as teenagers, will be included in this anthology, to bMy short story - Defying the Dust - featuring Ellie Watt and Camden McQueen when they first met as teenagers, will be included in this anthology, to be released in October!...more
4 Stars – Angelfall is solid and entertaining despite being overhyped and my disconnection from the main character
Angelfall was one of the first self-4 Stars – Angelfall is solid and entertaining despite being overhyped and my disconnection from the main character
Angelfall was one of the first self-published books to be picked up by a publisher (I mean, in this new "indie" era, when Amanda Hocking's story became more commonplace). It was also one of the first self-published books to get enthusiastic five star reviews from bloggers across the board. In fact, when Angelfall first came out back in 2011 (when I first started self-publishing) it was always the exception to the rule. See, at that time self-publishing had an even bigger stigma against it and most reviewers wouldn’t read the books or even look at them – except for Angelfall. And after that it became the one self-published book that finicky reviewers would use as an example “Oh, well all self-published books are shit…except for Angelfall.”
So what’s my point with all this? Well, to be honest I expected BETTER. Not that four stars isn’t GREAT. Angelfall is a great book. But considering how much hype this has gotten over the years, the fact that it’s going to be a movie, that even the pickiest bloggers loved it, that I’ve never seen a negative review of it, that people were fawning over it like it was a present from God, I expected five stars. I expected to be blown away.
What I did get was a well-written book, that at the time, I could see why bloggers were surprised it was self-published. I got cinematic scenes, deliciously gruesome stuff, fast-pacing and originality. It was hard to put down (though I waited years to start it) and largely entertaining. I also got Raffe, an agnostic angel who is both beautiful and mysterious – yes both a cliché and not but Raffe’s closed-off personality works here. He’s the reason I was more inclined to turn the pages and I found the scenes he was in to be far more dynamic and interesting.
What I didn’t get – a main character I cared about. I think one of my problems with Penryn is her age – she’s 17 but doesn’t “feel” like she’s 17. She feels like she’s in her late twenties. And I really wish Susan Ee had made her in her twenties…the whole teenage girl with a timeless supernatural being is overdone. Really? We’re supposed to believe that centuries old Raffe cares about Penryn like that? I mean the argument here is that he doesn’t but obviously there’s some sort of attraction/potential romance between the two leads…and it just made me feel icky. It wasn’t even like he looks like a 17-year old…he’s a man built like a God. I kept seeing Christian Bale (I don’t know, maybe it was the bat wings at the end) and some young kid together and it just didn’t work at all. Anyway, so one of my problems was that she wasn’t authentic and the other was she was too young anyway for the whole scenario to work.
That said, perhaps the reason I found Penryn to be an inauthentic teenager is because aside from her talking about prom, mentioning here and there that her dad left, her mom is crazy and she pushes her younger sister around in a wheelchair, I know nothing about HER. I had no connection to her whatsoever. She was robotic and flat and emotionless and after a while I just didn’t care what happened to her. I didn’t hate her by any means, nor did I find her annoying (though there were a few times that she was risking all for Raffe early in the book which read as a bit stupid). I just…all I got from her was that she wanted her sister back. But only until later in the book are we told a bit more about her (Paige) and we are never given any insight into their relationship. No reminiscing about old times or fond memories between the two that would establish the bond that is apparently so strong that she would risk everything for it. On that note, not many memories of her dad (we never do hear much about him or their relationship) or the schizo mother. The mother is a very interesting character but Penryn’s relationship with her even is so detached that it rings false. I get it, believe me I do, that it’s hard to love certain family members when they’re mentally ill. But despite the fact that Penryn has had to deal with her – even fear her – her whole life, I expected more emotion from Penryn regarding her mother. So many times she told us that she worried or afraid she might be dead but we never really shown. Same I guess when for Paige. We were told throughout the whole book how much Paige means to Penryn (or we are supposed to garner that from the obvious “I have to save my sister, I have to save my sister, I have to save my sister” mantra) but I never felt it.
I don’t know. It’s tricky with a book like this because it has so many great reviews that I feel like I’m the one with the problem. And maybe I am. Wouldn’t be the first time. I just wanted to feel more for Penryn. Maybe she’s supposed to be detached, clinical and unemotional and that’s fine, but I just can’t relate to that. A person can only operate like they’re sleepwalking through life for so long.
That’s the reason for having a star taken off. I appreciated how badass and strong she was but when the feels aren’t there, well, that really affects everything, doesn’t it?
That said, it’s still an excellent book. I’m sure maybe I would have rated it higher if I read it back in the day. Or if I hadn’t heard any of the hype. 4 stars is still a highly recommended read from me, so if you want an action-packed and intense ride with post-apocalyptic angels and can handle some gruesome and disturbing scenes, this book is for you.
And yes, I will be snapping of the sequel World After, the minute it is released. ...more
Don't read this if you expect/need a lot of sex in your books.
Don't read this if you have trouble reading about people's faith (even if their faith isDon't read this if you expect/need a lot of sex in your books.
Don't read this if you have trouble reading about people's faith (even if their faith is forgotten or challenged and isn't preachy, just informative and compelling).
DO NOT read this if you hate to be scared and you can't handle a little gore.
A little gore? If you're okay with spider vampire people with red eyes, crawling slowly down the walls preparing to rip your head off so only a bloody vertebrae remains, then you'll be okay.
I've had this book for some time but only got into a few days ago. Can I just say it's the worst book to read at night? Seriously, I've had nightmares and fitful sleep for the last two days.
This is YA and yet it's not. It's a very realistic, horrifying and beautifully written tale of free will and horror. Amish horror. Yep. Laura Bickle, you've entered Stephen King territory for me.
What's it about? Our plucky "Plain" heroine, Katie is Amish, content with her life...well, sorta. She's really looking forward to Rumspringa, when she can go into the "Outside" world with her best guy friend Elijah, and figure out if the Amish faith really is for her. You know, dip her toes in with us heathens and what not.
The thing about Katie though, even though her faith may separate us, she's every real. Extremely resilient and rebellious to what she is told - she doesn't just accept everything, faith included, but questions. But she doesn't do stupid rebellious shit like every YA heroine out there. She rebels as I would, thinking first and using heart and instinct.
Anyhoo, it starts with a helicopter crash in the cornfields, a horrifying scene in itself, and the fact that she sees a red-eyed...being...in the copter before it explodes in a fireball. Things very slowly, very ominously, come into place. Something terrible has happened in the outside world. There are no medical services or firetrucks responding (their "English" aka Outsider friend is visiting and she has a cell phone), the nearest town is deserted. Weird shit. The kind of "I think the end of the world is coming but how or why?" kind of shit that really, really disturbs me. This is why zombie movies freak me the fuck out.
Oh, but this isn't a zombie movie. Oh no, I think it's worse.
Remember our friend the vampire? Do you remember they used to be scary at one point? Well in this book, it's the monster from your nightmares. That's right...MONSTER. And holy crap,do you feel the unease and hopelessness that the world will end when the last living thing has had their intestines ripped out and their head chewed off.
There's also an injured Canadian boy (yay!) who feisty Katie rescues and hides in her barn. Their relationship builds slow and at the end will surprise you (sex in YA novels is awesome...sex with an Amish girl in YA novels...SUPER AWESOME).
Anyhoo, I'm rambling...got no sleep because of this damn book. Thank god I only have to wait until Tuesday to get the next one in the series. I must say the way the author portrays the honest is compelling -it both shows the hypocrisy of the rules of the religion (particularly when it comes to the governing Elders) but also shows the heart and soul of it too.
Seriously. If you're a fan of horror and suspense and lyrical writing and all things awesome and unique, do read this book. You won't be sorry.