Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Tea for Two (The SOS #2) by Kailee Reese Samuels **Review**

Tea for Two (The SOS, #2)

**** WARNING: This book contains graphic BDSM, strong sexual situations, and explicit language. Contents intended for MATURE readers 18+ ONLY.He’s young.*****

He’s hot.
He’s bad.

And Sal Raniero can’t keep his ass out of trouble.

He’s spent months learning to keep clients happy to line his wallet. When an unlikely friendship spins his world upside down, Sal ends up discovering the girl of his dreams. Chasing after Bertie the only way he knows how, Sal pushes out of his comfort zone and forces everyone to realize how far he’ll go to get what he wants.

Welcome to the story of Sal & Bertie… where some dreams only end in a nightmare.


REVIEW:
So, I don't read a lot of Erotica or BDSM....like ever. I'm not big on reading explicit sexual content, especially if it doesn't have a point to the story. But I knew about this coming into the story, to be fair..so I can't really complain about something I was forewarned about.
Aside from the explicit sexual scenes and course language....I was a bit lost, personally. I think it would have been helpful if I had read book one first. 
I did like the fact that this book sort of went back into time to show how Sal came to know Juliet as well as The Initiation so I got some background information there which helped connect the dots for me. Once I got more and more involved in the book, it was easier to get more into the story of these characters. I was confused with Sal...Sal seemed to jump from Kaci to Bertie to who next? Maybe the next book will tell..? I didn't care for this book in the beginning but now, I need to see how this all pans out!
If  you don't mind erotica/BDSM type books, you should give this a try.

**Giveaway** The Varangian (Odd Tangle-Hair Saga #3) by Bruce MacBain **Review**

The Varangian (Odd Tangle-Hair Saga #3)
The Varangianis the final entry in Bruce Macbain's Odd Tangle-Hair Saga and brings Odd's challenging adventures to a climactic and satisfying finish. On a secret diplomatic mission to the Emperor's court in Miklagard, the Viking's name for Constantinople, Odd meets the members of the fearsome Varangian Guard whose elite Viking members served as the Emperor's personal bodyguards. Harald, his former master and the man he's been sent to murder, now serves among the guards. Court intrigue and imperial dynastic disputes provide the backdrop for the conflict between Odd and Harald. LikeOdin's ChildandThe Ice Queenbefore it, The Varangianis dictated by Odd to a young scribe whose own life is changed by the telling of the tale."

REVIEW:
This was most definitely an out of the box read for me. I  think it is because of that that it was hard for me to get into. But I kept in mind the synopsis caught my attention so I read on. And, once I got into the story line, it was quite the intrigue. I can see why people enjoy this type of read. It's a historical novel which is why I opted to read it even though the cover threw me. The fact that this is during the second millennium(AD) really takes the reader back into time. Reading about Odd and all the adventures that happened kept me turning the pages. I was pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed this book.  


About the Author

Bruce Macbain holds degrees in Classics and Ancient History and was formerly an Assistant Professor of Classics at Boston University. He decided to stop writing scholarly articles (which almost no one read) and turn his expertise to fiction—a much more congenial medium. His previous novels include two mysteries set in ancient Rome (Roman Games, The Bull Slayer) and the first two novels in the Odd Tangle-Hair series (Odin’s Child, The Ice Queen).
For more information, please visit Bruce MacBain’s website. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Goodreads.


**Giveaway**Elementary She Read by Vicki Delany **Review**



Elementary She Read

by Vicki Delany
Read the first chapter here.
by Vicki Delany
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (March 14, 2017)
Hardcover: 320 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1683310969
Kindle ASIN: B01MT6H7O1

Gemma Doyle, a transplanted Englishwoman, has returned to the quaint town of West London on Cape Cod to manage her Great Uncle Arthur's Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium. The shop--located at 222 Baker Street--specializes in the Holmes canon and pastiche, and is also the home of Moriarty the cat. When Gemma finds a rare and potentially valuable magazine containing the first Sherlock Homes story hidden in the bookshop, she and her friend Jayne (who runs the adjoining Mrs. Hudson's Tea Room) set off to find the owner, only to stumble upon a dead body.
The highly perceptive Gemma is the police’s first suspect, so she puts her consummate powers of deduction to work to clear her name, investigating a handsome rare books expert, the dead woman's suspiciously unmoved son, and a whole family of greedy characters desperate to cash in on their inheritance. But when Gemma and Jayne accidentally place themselves at a second murder scene, it's a race to uncover the truth before the detectives lock them up for good.
Vicki Delany is one of Canada’s most prolific and varied crime writers. She is the author of twenty-three published crime novels, including standalone Gothic thrillers, the Constable Molly Smith series, and the Year Round Christmas Mysteries.  Under the pen name of Eva Gates she is the national bestselling author of the Lighthouse Library cozy series.

REVIEW:
When I first read the blurb I had to read this. I love that the setting is in a bookstore. Everything seems fine and fun with sharing the space with her friend who set up a tea shop. Among the books of Sherlock Holmes and other memorabilia, Gemma finds an magazine that is valuable sort of hidden and she didn't put it there. So she sets out to find whomever put this precious magazine within her bookstore. When she does finally find the woman....she's dead. The story was cozy before, then add on the element of mystery, then add on the element of murder mystery! This was such a cool and cozy read. The author created such a fun backdrop and Gemma is such a character! Once you get into this story, you want to continue turning the page to find out why this woman hid the magazine, in her shop no less, and why was she murdered?! If you love cozy mysteries, you'll love this!

 

The first in Vicki’s Sherlock Holmes bookshop series, Elementary She Read, will be released in March 2017 from Crooked Lane Books.

Vicki lives and writes in Prince Edward County, Ontario. She is the past president of the Crime Writers of Canada.


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**Giveaway** Waiting For Aegina by Effie Kammenou **Review**

Waiting for Aegina (The Gift Saga Book 2)

Book Two in The Gift Saga: The continuation of Evanthia’s Gift …

In 1961, five little girls moved into a suburban neighborhood and became inseparable, lifelong friends. They called themselves the ‘Honey Hill Girls,’ named after the street on which they lived. As teenagers they shared one another’s ambitions and dreams, secrets and heartaches. Now, more than thirty years later, they remain devoted and loyal, supporting each other through triumphs and sorrows.

Evanthia's Gift follows the life of Sophia Giannakos. In Waiting for Aegina the saga continues from the perspectives of Sophia and her friends as the story drifts back and forth in time, filling in the gaps as the women grow to adulthood.

Naive teenage ideals are later challenged by harsh realities, as each of their lives takes unexpected turns. Now nearing their fiftieth year, Sophia, Demi, Amy, Mindy and Donna stand together through life-altering obstacles while they try to regain the lighthearted optimism of their youth. 


REVIEW:
Waiting for Aegina is a continuation of The Gift Saga. I am loving this series thus far. I love it because it's real. It's about real friendship and loyalty; which I love. There's some time travel in this story in the sense that the author takes you from present time to flashback memories to fill in the gaps on how they all became such good friends. I am reading both books and so far this author did not disappoint. This is such a good story about womanhood, sisterhood, friendship, loyalty, as well as the triumphs and difficulties in life. 

EXCERPT:
  Sophia was seated at the edge of a worn leather chair with her eyes fixed on Dean, tears streaming down her cheeks. Ignoring the sting from the cuts and bruises on her forehead and nose, the soreness on the left side of her body, and the sharp pains coming from her casted arm, she gently gripped her husband’s hand, hoping her touch would will him into consciousness.
          Not twenty-four hours ago, they were having the time of their lives—reconnecting with old friends, dancing, and maybe drinking a little too much. Which is why Sophia took the keys from Dean and insisted she drive home.    
          Their joyful night came to a crashing end when a bright light reflecting from her side view mirror blinded Sophia. It was as though everything after that happened in slow motion—the sound of crunching metal and screeching tires, a surreal feeling that the car may have flipped over and over, and the shattering of breaking glass when a car struck theirs, slamming into the passenger door where Dean was seated.          
          When their vehicle came to a sudden halt, Sophia found that the car had not turned over as she thought, yet somewhere in her confused and disoriented mind, it had registered that they must have spun around.
          Clouds of white surrounded Sophia and she screamed out to Dean, afraid he was unconscious or severely injured from the impact the car had taken.
          Her door flung open. “Sophia, I have to get you out of the car. Help is on its way.”
          “Dino! Help Dino!” Sophia desperately pleaded, not sure to whom she was speaking to. It was so dark and she was blinded by fear.
          Slapping away the airbags obstructing her view, she called out to her husband. “Dino! Talk to me. Say something.”
          Struggling to open his eyes, Dean groaned, but his lids remained closed.
          Michael, who had been following in the car behind, could see that metal from the car had compressed around the lower half of Dean’s body and, without help, he would not be able to pull him from the wreckage.
          Sophia reached for Dean, but Michael stopped her.
          “It’s better not to touch him until the EMTs get here.”
          Panic-stricken after watching the erratic driver crash into her brother’s door, Demi helped Sophia out of the car and clung to her.
          Within minutes, the dark road was polluted with flashing lights and the sound of blaring sirens. Rescuers came swiftly, assessing the situation quickly deciding to rely on the ‘Jaws of Life’ to cut Dean out of the car.        Another medic came to Sophia’s aid, placing her arm in a splint and tending to the open gashes on her face and arm.
          “Forget about me! Take care of my husband,” she demanded, her voice strained from fear.
          “Your husband is in good hands.” The female medic looked up after she finished wrapping Sophia’s arm. “They’re about to load him into the ambulance now, ma’am.”
          “Take me to him.”
          “Of course.”
          The uniformed woman guided Sophia to where Dean was strapped on a stretcher and about to be lifted into the back end of an ambulance. Too many people surrounded him, making it impossible for Sophia to get close.

Author Bio
Her debut novel, Evanthia’s Gift, is a women’s fiction multigenerational love story and family saga, influenced by her Greek heritage, and the many real life accounts that have been passed down. She continues to pick her father’s brain for stories of his family’s life in Lesvos, Greece, and their journey to America. Her interview with him was published in a nationally circulated magazine.
Evanthia’s Gift: Book One in The Gift Saga was a 2016 award finalist in the Readers Favorite Awards in the Women’s Fiction category.  Waiting for Aegina: Book Two in The Gift Saga is Kammenou’s latest release.
Effie Kammenou is a first generation Greek-American who lives on Long Island with her husband and two daughters. When she’s not writing, or posting recipes on her food blog, cheffieskitchen.wordpress.com, you can find her cooking for her family and friends.
As an avid cook and baker, a skill she learned from watching her Athenian mother, she incorporated traditional Greek family recipes throughout the books.  
She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theater Arts from Hofstra University.


Links
Amazon author page
Short URL for author page
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Monday, March 20, 2017

**Giveaway** The Ashes by Vincent Zandri **Review**





Title:
THE ASHES
Author: Vincent Zandri
Publisher: Bear Media
Pages: 277
Genre: Thriller/Horror/Romantic Suspense

HORROR IN THE DARK WOODS
It’s been eight years since artist and single mom, Rebecca
 Underhill, was abducted and left to
die in an old broken down house located in the middle of the dark woods. But
even if her abductor, Joseph William Whalen, has since been killed, another,
more insidious evil is once more out to get her in the form of the Skinner. The
son of an abusive butcher, Skinner intends on finishing the job Whalen started
but failed at.

How is he going to get to Rebecca?

He’s going to do it through her children, by luring them
into the cornfield behind the old farmhouse they live in.

HORROR IN THE DEPTHS
Now, armed with the knowledge that the Skinner has escaped
incarceration at a downstate facility for the criminally insane, Rebecca must
face the most horrifying challenge of her adult life: Rescuing the children not
from a house in the woods, but from the abandoned tunnels that run underneath
her property.

But the Skinner is watching Rebecca’s every move.

Horrifying question is, will she live long enough to save
the children?

REVIEW:
I love suspense and the synopsis for this book had me especially intrigued. although I don't care for blood and gore - at all. Thankfully it was at a minimal so that made that aspect of the book tolerable. That said... this author does not disappoint in the suspense department at all! I truly had a hard time putting this book down! And, this is the second in this series. I haven't read the first one, but even not reading the first one (yet!), this can be read as a stand alone book. Although I do like that the author gives you just enough information from the first book to give you a better, clearer understanding for this book ( although I always recommend reading a series in order).  For anyone who enjoys horrors, this is a book (series) for you. If you're not a fan of horrors, I understand; neither am I but, maybe you could/should try this...

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Amazon
 

Book Excerpt:

Albany Police Department
South
  Pearl Street Precinct

The old homicide detective sits
behind his metal desk surrounded by the cold quiet of the early morning,
staring forlornly into the radiant screen on his department-issued laptop. He’s
been using the laptop, which is integrated with the department’s web server,
for years and years now, but he still fondly recalls the days when his desktop
supported only a telephone connected to an old fashioned landline and beside
that, an IMB Selectric typewriter. And how could he ever forget the old two
tiered Inbox/Outbox?
He glances at his inbox and the two
dozen or so new emails that have come his way since he last checked it the
previous evening. He scans the emails for their importance, relegating most of
them to routine, until he comes to one marked, “URGENT: Serial Murderer Hanover
Escapes Custody.”
The detective, whose name is Nick
Miller, is a tall, wiry, white-haired man. He has been on the force for more
years than a man should be. Or so he’s been told countless times by his peers
inside the department. But he’s a widower who can’t seem to get over the fact
that his wife is gone, even years after her untimely death on an operating
table after suffering a burst aneurism. It also explains why he’s sitting
behind his desk, suffering from the pangs of a whiskey hangover, on a quiet
Sunday morning.
He opens the email.
“To Whom It May Concern,” reads the
department wide message. “The former cellmate of New
  York State
registered sex offender and convicted murderer, Joseph William Whalen, has
escaped from the Mid-Hudson Psychiatric
 Center in New Hampton, New York
while en route to a routine medical review at an upstate facility. Lawrence
Frederick Hanover, 69, Caucasian, was convicted on several counts of murder in
the first degree and is considered extremely dangerous. Both guards who were
assisting with the transfer were killed during an apparent violent exchange
with Hanover, aka Skinner, or The
Skinner. His present whereabouts is unknown.”
 Miller exhales, sits back in his swivel chair.
The email originates not from the
FBI but from the state police, most notably, the Rensselaer County Division. He
recalls Whalen as the maximum security inmate who, not long after his release,
attempted to abduct and kill the same woman, Rebecca
 Underhill, whom he’d abducted back
when she was a little girl in 1977. Her twin sister, Molly, was also the target
of his attacks. Although Molly has since died, Rebecca, still lives in the area
with her son.
The email comes with several
pictures of Hanover, including
his most recent mugshots and psychiatric facility photo records. The small,
bald, scraggily faced little man doesn’t seem like he could hurt a fly much
less another human being. But Miller wasn’t born yesterday and he knows that
even a little man can kill as efficiently and quickly as a big, monster of a
man. Perhaps even more quickly and efficiently.
Sitting back up, he scans the rest
of the email.
“While state police have issued
state-wide APBs and launched a task force to hunt for Hanover’s
whereabouts, we are asking that police cooperate in every way possible to
ensure the quick, efficient, and otherwise discreet apprehension of the serial
murderer. All communications should be delivered directly to this office via
the email/phone number listed.”
Once more Miller sits back.
“The quick, efficient, and
otherwise discreet apprehension of the serial murderer,” he whispers. “Somebody
fucked up and that somebody doesn’t want the press to get ahold of this
story.”  
Sitting there, alone in the quiet
office, Miller feels a distinct and very unpleasant chill run up and down his
backbone.
“What would a schooled Statie or
FBI pathologist have to say about this rather delicate situation?” he whispers
quietly to himself. “That a killer as skilled and hungry as Hanover
is gonna slip up and be found sleeping in some crappy hotel somewhere? That
they can then slip him back inside his rubber room at Mid-Hudson Psychiatric,
like he’s some two-bit bank robber?” The detective laughs aloud. “I’ll tell you
something right now. If the Skinner doesn’t want to be found, then no way in
hell he’s gonna be found. Simple as that. He didn’t escape to be free. He
escaped to kill, to butcher, and that’s all.”
His bloodshot eyes once more
focused on the laptop screen, the old detective shifts the curser so that it
clicks on the Action Taken box beside the open email. He clicks on Saved Mail.
Closing the laptop lid, he finds
that his hands are shaking. He opens the bottom desk drawer, pulls out the
bottle of Jack Daniels stored inside it. Pouring a generous shot into his empty
ceramic coffee cup, he drinks it down.
“Skinner,” he whispers. “Who will
you flay next? Whose flesh will you feast on?”     




Meet the Author

Winner
of the 2015 PWA Shamus Award and the 2015 ITW Thriller Award for Best Original Paperback
Novel, Vincent Zandri is the NEW YORK TIMES, USA
TODAY, and AMAZON KINDLE No.1 bestselling author of more than 25 novels
including THE REMAINS, MOONLIGHT WEEPS, EVERYTHING BURNS, and ORCHARD GROVE. He
is also the author of numerous Amazon bestselling digital shorts, PATHOLOGICAL,
TRUE STORIES and MOONLIGHT MAFIA among them. Harlan Coben has described THE
INNOCENT (formerly As Catch Can) as "...gritty, fast-paced, lyrical and
haunting," while the New York Post called it "Sensational...Masterful...Brilliant!"
Zandri's list of domestic publishers include Delacorte, Dell, Down & Out
Books, Thomas & Mercer and Polis Books, while his foreign publisher is Meme
Publishers of Milan and Paris. An MFA in Writing graduate of Vermont
 College, Zandri's work is translated
in the Dutch, Russian, French, Italian, and Japanese. Recently, Zandri was the
subject of a major feature by the New York Times. He has also made appearances
on Bloomberg TV and FOX news. In December 2014, Suspense Magazine named
Zandri's, THE SHROUD KEY, as one of the "Best Books of 2014."
Recently, Suspense Magazine selected WHEN SHADOWS COME as one of the "Best
Books of 2016". A freelance photo-journalist and the author of the popular
"lit blog," The Vincent Zandri Vox, Zandri has written for Living
Ready Magazine, RT, New York Newsday, Hudson Valley Magazine, The Times Union
(Albany), Game & Fish Magazine, and many more. He lives in New
  York and Florence, Italy.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:



Giveaway Details:

Vincent is giving away ten Kindle
e-copies of THE ASHES!
Terms & Conditions:



  • By entering the giveaway, you
  •      are confirming you are at least 18 years old.



  • Ten winners will be chosen
  •      via Rafflecopter.



  • This giveaway ends midnight May 31.
  • Good luck everyone!

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