Review: Blood Bonds by Kerry A. Campbell

 

Blood BondsLily Myers is living an ordinary life until she meets Quinn Carter. When Quinn turns out to be a century-old vampire, Lily is thrust into a reality where she’s an unwilling believer. But as her fear fades and her curiosity wins out, she finds herself falling for Quinn and learning more about this new world. From hunting down a vampire killer to meeting werewolves, Lily’s life has definitely taken a turn…but whether it’s for the worse or better, she’s still finding out.

 

A Paranormal Romance for Vampire Lovers

Lily is a lab tech with insomnia. Because of her late night walks in the town that she knows so well, she finds herself intertwined in the dark, hidden world of vampires and werewolves.

After she meets the mysterious, drop dead gorgeous Quinn in a dark alley, her life is changed forever. And, after a series of unusual events, Lily finds herself bonded to him for life.

The characters are awesome and relatable–people that you might meet any day on the street. Dimitri is all about appearances and wears nothing but the best designer clothing; Eric is a laid back, beer slugging, always hungry alpha werewolf.

Blood Bonds is Kerry’s first solo novel. Her writing style mixes the darkness of blood and vampires with a touch of light-heartedness and a twist of sarcasm on the side.

I’ve posted some excerpts from Blood Bonds in my Friday post. If you’d like to have a read, check it out here.

Blood Bonds is on sale now at Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Kobo | Barnes and Noble |

You can follow Kerry’s blog here at The Geeky Book Lady

Thanks for stopping by!

Jo-Ann

 

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Blood Bonds by Kerry A. Campbell

Blood BondsLily Myers is living an ordinary life until she meets Quinn Carter. When Quinn turns out to be a century-old vampire, Lily is thrust into a reality where she’s an unwilling believer. But as her fear fades and her curiosity wins out, she finds herself falling for Quinn and learning more about this new world. From hunting down a vampire killer to meeting werewolves, Lily’s life has definitely taken a turn…but whether it’s for the worse or better, she’s still finding out.

 

I’m so excited to finally be able to purchase this book! Yay! It’s a long awaited compilation of short stories by my dear friend Kerry, the face behind the blog The Geeky Book Lady.

After discussions over numerous cups of coffee and in writer’s groups and workshops, I feel like I know these characters. I can’t wait to read Lily and Quinn’s story in print!

Kerry’s writing has always been top notch and she has worked hard to bring the stories that she is so passionate about into book form. 

Vampires, werewolves…if you enjoy reading paranormal or speculative fiction, it is definitely worth picking up a copy. It is a short story collection but all the stories are continuous and connected.

On Friday, I’ll will give a glimpse into Blood Bonds with Book Beginnings and the Friday 56. I’ll follow up next week with my review, so stay tuned!

I don’t post very often, but there’s lots going on lately, so I’ll just say that I also have another post coming up related to short stories. I’m super pumped about it, but you’ll just have to wait…

Till next time, I’d like to know…do you enjoy stories about vampires and werewolves? Leave a comment!

Jo-Ann

 

Book Review: The Elemental Coven by Kayla Krantz

The Elemental Coven
The Elemental Coven
The Elemental Coven by Kayla Krantz

I was thrilled to see Kayla Krantz released her newest book, The Elemental Coven! It is the second book in the Witch’s Ambitions Trilogy and I’m happy to say it was well worth the wait.

When I had read the first of the series, The Council, I wanted more! Kayla is an excellent writer. She is wonderfully descriptive and draws you in with her engaging characters and captivating world-building.

You can read my review of The Council here.

The Elemental Coven starts off a bit slow, but quickly picks up the pace. Some of the characters and events that were in the first book I had forgotten about, so there were times that I wished I had reread The Council more recently. I think it would be difficult to get what was happening in this story if you hadn’t read the The Council.

Lilith, the main character, is taken prisoner by the Elemental Coven, a band of rogue witches that were believed to be the bad guys. As Lilith learns more about their mission and motives, she looks to solve the mystery of her past, Willow and the secrets of the Council that had been kept from her.

The story is suspenseful and intriguing. She doesn’t know who she can trust or which side is doing the right thing.

An aspect that I love about this trilogy is the world that the author has built. There are five covens, each with their own unique abilities. They are ruled over by the Council, presumed to work for the best interests of all the covens in the Land of Five. There is, of course, a fair amount of political intrigue and all is not as rosy as it seems on the surface.

Lilith, the main character doesn’t know who she can trust or which side is doing the right thing. It is a guessing game that build suspense and leaves the reader questioning everything and wanting more.

The author does a great job of developing the main character as well as the supporting cast and wondering what, if any, their ulterior motives might be.

The story ends on a major cliffhanger. Unfortunately, we now have to wait until 2020 to find out what happens next!

I received an advanced copy of the Elemental Coven in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Proud author of a number of fantasy and thrillers, fascinated by the dark and macabre. Stephen King is her all time inspiration mixed in with a little bit of Eminem. When she began writing, she started in horror but it somehow drifted into thriller. She loves the 1988 movie Heathers. She was born and raised in Michigan but traveled across the country to where she currently resides in Texas.

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http://eepurl.com/cwZHEz

Review: The Chalk Man

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In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence. They spend their days biking around their sleepy English village and looking for any taste of excitement they can get. The chalk men are their secret code: little chalk stick figures they leave for one another as messages only they can understand. But then a mysterious chalk man leads them right to a dismembered body, and nothing is ever the same.
In 2016, Eddie is fully grown, and thinks he’s put his past behind him. But then he gets a letter in the mail, containing a single chalk stick figure. When it turns out that his friends got the same message, they think it could be a prank . . . until one of them turns up dead.
That’s when Eddie realizes that saving himself means finally figuring out what really happened all those years ago.
Expertly alternating between flashbacks and the present day, The Chalk Man is the very best kind of suspense novel, one where every character is wonderfully fleshed out and compelling, where every mystery has a satisfying payoff, and where the twists will shock even the savviest reader.

 

I loved the whole premise behind this book…mysterious chalk drawing–what could be more intriguing! I was so excited to read this book and I wasn’t disappointed.

The Chalk Man is told from the point of view of Eddie and toggles back and forth from events that started it all in 1986 to 2016 when it all comes together.

The story opens with a morbid discovery in the woods, a body of a young woman found brutally murdered.

I loved how the author dropped little bits and pieces of information on what has happened and what was found. And as each of the characters grow and mature, we learn more about each of them, too. There is definitely more to each characters story, but what surprised me most was what the reader discovers about Eddie, the main character. He seems fairly normal, but certainly has his issues, too.

The book is superbly written, with lots of red herrings, twists and turns in the story that kept me hanging on and wanting to read more.

It’s not until the very end when we discover who killed the girl in the woods, and believe me, you can’t even guess who did it!

I have to say, I LOVED the ending. I never saw it coming. It was strange and sad, and somewhat horrifying.

Have you read the Chalk Man? What did you think of that ending?

Thanks for reading,

Jo-Ann

 

Book Review: 18 Steps to Own Your Life: Simple Powers for a Healthier, Happier You

18Steps

I had the pleasure of reading Keith McArthur’s 18 Steps to Own Your Life in exchange for a fair and honest review.

18 Steps for Your Own Life has to be one of the most practical self-help books I’ve had the pleasure to read.

It’s a short but compact read, filled with nuggets of common sense, practical life tips that will make your life easier, happier and healthier. No gimmicks, no guff, just solid advice that makes sense.

Author Keith McArthur breaks life down to 18 important categories where we can make vast improvements in our lives with small changes. He draws from his own life experience and also references the writings of other well known self help writers, compiling the best information out there into one practical resource.

He does not present himself as a guru, but as a human who has struggled with his own battles, both internal and external. He presents what he has learned from those experiences, what has worked for him and chose to share it with the world in the hopes of helping others.

Each of the 18 steps are presented, expanded upon and followed by a list of the key takeaways at the end of each section. My personal favourite section was on sanctifying your space.

Worksheets for the book will also be available, an absolutely fantastic way to stop and think about your goals and choices instead of skipping over to the next section.

18 Steps to Your Own Life is an excellent resource for anyone looking to change their life through their choices, habits, healthy mental and physical health and using your time more effectively.

18 Steps to Own Your Life is on sale at Amazon. Here is the link to get your own copy.

To view this book on Goodreads, go here.

 

41afkwdo9zl-_sy200_Keith McArthur got a second chance at life in 2017 when his little sister donated one of her kidneys to him. Now, he writes and podcasts about his journey to becoming happier and healthier. Keith is the creator of MyInstructionManual.com — a website, podcast, and book series providing high-quality personal-development content.

Review and TGIF: Dark Beneath the Moon by Sherry D. Ramsey

Dark Beneath the MoonLuta Paixon has plenty of trouble on the Tane Ikai, with relationships in flux and the sticky problem of two captains on one ship. But when an alien artifact, the remnant of a long-ago war, shows up on the other side of a newly-discovered wormhole, the crew also find themselves pressed into the service of the Nearspace Protectorate. The Tane Ikai‘s task: covertly deliver an alien historian to the site to decipher its meaning—and possible threat.

Jahelia Sord is a woman with a grudge against the world, and against Luta Paixon and her family in particular. She has her own secrets to guard, and an alliance with the notorious PrimeCorp—one she’ll keep only as long as it suits her own hunt for vengeance.

When a mysterious attack leaves them stranded in an uncharted new system, Luta, her crew, and Jahelia must try to put their differences aside and decide who to trust, while they uncover a shocking truth about the Chron war and what their old enemies are so afraid of…

 

The crew of the Tane Ikai is back for more mystery and adventure. This second novel in the Nearspace series is full of intriguing mysteries, covert operations and action.

The characters are more in-depth and developed. Rei, especially is one of my favourite characters, and I love that we get to learn more about her.

 

The Chron is an alien race that viciously attacked and almost wiped out Nearspace generations before. As quickly and mysteriously as they had appeared, they disappeared without a trace. There were references to them in the first book, this time we get to learn a whole lot more.

The Protectorate has discovered a new wormhole with ancient alien artefacts. They are believed to be of Chron origin and secrecy is of utmost importance. Luta’s brother, an Admiral in the Protectorate has asked her to deliver an alien historian through the wormhole to assist them.

They go through measures to make sure they are not being followed. Unfortunately,  Jahelia Sord manages to follow them through the wormhole. She is a whole new character on the scene with her own agenda in mind.

Jahelia’s motivations are certainly questionable. Working for PrimeCorp, she has her own grudge against Luta and her mother.

Parts of the story are told through her POV. She certainly has her own unique voice and she is not a very likeable character because of her attitude and issues, though she certainly is entertaining!

Luta and her crew along with Jahelia find themselves under attack and in trouble. They reluctantly work together to find a solution to get back home.

In the meantime, Luta has her own set of problems when her health declines. It’s a race to escape the Chron, try to find their way back Nearspace and find her mother before its too late.

Once again Sherry had done an amazing job growing Nearspace and beyond, as well as adding new alien species and technology.

I thoroughly enjoyed Book 2 in the Sherry Ramsey’s Nearspace series and can’t wait to start reading the third book in the series Beyond the Sentinel Stars. 

For more information about Book 1, One’s Aspect to the Sun, you can check it out on Goodreads here or see my review here.

Review: Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

Blurb from Goodread:  Rule #3: Don’t stare at invisible faeries.
Aislinn has always seen faeries. Powerful and dangerous, they walk hidden in the mortal world. Aislinn fears their cruelty – especially if they learn of her Sight – and wishes she were as blind to their presence as other teens.

Rule #2: Don’t speak to invisible faeries.
Now faeries are stalking her. One of them, Keenan, who is equal parts terrifying and alluring, is trying to talk to her, asking questions Aislinn is afraid to answer.

Rule #1: Don’t ever attract their attention.
But it’s too late. Keenan is the Summer King, who has sought his queen for nine centuries. Without her, summer itself will perish. He is determined that Aislinn will become the Summer Queen at any cost — regardless of her plans or desires.

Suddenly none of the rules that have kept Aislinn safe are working anymore, and everything is on the line: her freedom; her best friend, Seth; her life; everything.

Faery intrigue, mortal love, and the clash of ancient rules and modern expectations swirl together in Melissa Marr’s stunning twenty-first-century faery tale.

As soon as I found this book on another blog and read the premise, I knew I had to get my hand on it!

Aislynn, her mother and her grandmother were all born with the Sight. That means that they see faeries. Everywhere.

The average human is oblivious to their existence and the tricks that they play. 

These are not the cute, magical, Tinkerbell fairies that sprinkle dust to give good luck. These faeries are dark and mischievous. They can be glamorous or frightening. They are not creatures that you want to have hanging around.

Aislynn must pretend that she cannot see the faeries. If they become aware they she can see them, she risks being killed or at the very least, blinded.

The Summer King has chosen to court Aislynn. Most girls who are courted by him fall head over heels, but Aislynn sees through his glamour, and her fear of faeries demands that she stay as far away from him as possible.

She is unwillingly pulled into the Faery world, conflicting with her friendship and the beginnings of romance with Seth. Aislynn was a strong character who stands up for herself even when she is afraid to.

I absolutely loved the way the relationship between Seth and Aislynn grew. Aislynn fought any romance with him for fear of jeopardizing their amazing friendship. It developed as a slow burn that I found it touching and warm.

I would liked to have seen more background on Aislynn’s mother and her role in the story. It was a great start, but then the reader was left hanging about what happened, her connection with the Summer King and why she died.

I enjoyed the writing, though it was a bit confusing at times and I had to go back and reread. I did like the way it was written with multiple POVs. I enjoy getting into the heads of the other characters.

I was completely captivated by the story and wouldn’t put the book down until I found out how it ended. What was going to happen to Aislynn? To Seth and the Summer King? 

I enjoyed the ending, but I wonder if it wouldn’t have been more interesting if it things hadn’t worked out quite so perfectly.

 

 

 

Review: Shadow Girl by Misty Mount

Blurb from Goodreads: Zylia looks like your typical teenager, with one small exception…she’s disappearing. Everyone has felt unnoticed or unseen, but for Zylia it’s very real. In her search for answers, she uncovers an old family mystery. Zylia must discover the truth before she vanishes from this world forever.

I was excited to be a lucky winner of this book! My thanks go out to the author, Misty Mount for the opportunity to win this exceptional book! As soon as I read the blurb, I was hooked!

The Shadow Girl is a Young Adult novel with Zylia as the main character. She is a lovely girl, thoughtful, compassionate and kindhearted. She struggles with being noticed, or for that matter being seen at all. With the exception of very few people, she feels invisible. 

The surprise of the story is they actually do not see her. She gets passed over at meals when she’s home and quizzes when she’s at school. She gets bumped into and trampled on. To make matters worse, the only time she does get noticed is at the most awkward, worst possible times. If you are an introvert, you get it, right?

Zylia wonders and worries that she is quite literally disappearing.

I was drawn into her character and there were times when my heart broke for her.

When her grandmother who has dementia takes a strange interest in her, we realize there is more going on here than a teen who simply feels down and alone. Her grandmother begins calling her by her sister’s name, Angelica. She becomes agitated and attacks her. It is interesting to note that Angelica had disappeared many years ago, when she was about the same age as Zylia.

Zylia appeals to her new friend Terra to help her solve the mystery of her grandmother’s long lost sister and she learns that she and her great-aunt have more in common than their looks.

The Shadow Girl is a very unique and fascinating read. On a whole it is written beautifully, with lovely imagery. At times, particularly in the beginning, I found the story was a bit slow moving. The author’s writing style makes up for that however. This book is a pleasure to read and shares a beautiful message that we should all strive to live by.

What are your thoughts? Is this a book that you would like to read?

Thanks for stopping by!

Jo-Ann

 

 

 

Review: Aggravated Momentum by Didi Oviatt

Blurb from Amazon: Deadly thriller, twisted plot, shocking, and dark conspiracy hardly scratch the surface to define Aggravated Momentum. Not everything is as it seems in what appears to be an average family. When danger lurks so close to home, skeletons emerge, and the darkest of secrets surface, causing twisted desires to become reality. Aggravated Momentum offers the perspective of some very diverse and unique characters, including fun, witty personalities to fall in love with, along with an intellectual killer to die for. You may be surprised as to whom exactly you can relate. Is it the cold, calculated murderer, who’s name is yet to be revealed? Markie or Kam, the independent sisters, guilty of nothing more than getting tangled with the wrong people at the most inopportune times? Or, the cowardly snake curled in a hidden corner? Who are you, exactly? And, more importantly, who are they? The deeper you dig into the psyche of another, the more breath taking are the secrets you will find.

View on Amazon

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Put on your seatbelt and hold on tight because this novel is one hell of a roller coaster ride! There are more twists and turns I never saw coming.

As you can tell by the gorgeous cover, it is about murder — a serial murderer at that. It has great pacing and once I started reading it, could not put it down. It was wonderfully unpredictable, I had to know what was going to happen next! Didi did an amazing job building suspense and giving just enough back story that you don’t know who to trust.

The book is well written in Didi’s unique style. The dialogue is realistic. Yes, people do use swear words. It is an adult thriller.

I love that the point of view changed several times during the story and the reader could get into the head of not only Markie, the main character but also her sister Kam, the killer and even the main character’s mother. The reader gets to experience first hand what they are thinking (more surprises!) and discover their own dirty little secrets. And believe me, it seems that every character has them.

Go to Didi’s blog

Thanks for reading!

Jo-Ann

 

Review: Search for Maylee

From Goodreads: Since Maylee was abducted from her high school the very month of graduation, her Aunt Autumn has never lost hope in finding her. It’s been three years. Autumn has finally reached inside herself and found the courage to track down an old lead. She moves across the country to find him. Will Autumn be able to pry Maylee’s case back open? More importantly, what will Autumn uncover in the process of searching for Maylee? It’s a cold dark world we live in, and she is about to find out just how cruel it can be. Strength and determination are on Autumn’s side and she will do what ever it takes.

View on Amazon

View on Goodreads

I love a good suspense and Search for Maylee did not disappoint! I just finished reading the last page and all I can say is WOW! The author kept me on the edge of my seat. I blew through this novel because I could not wait to find out what was going to happening next. The story begins slowly, building tension and background information.

Although the main theme is about finding Maylee, the main character of they story is Autumn. She is devastated that her niece has been abducted and for three years, she waits for her to be found, feeling frustrated by the lack of action on the part of police. When she finally gets her hands on a clue, she decides to take matters into her own hands. She sells everything she owns and moves from her home in California to Denver, Colorado in the desperate hope of finding Maylee on her own.

I had no idea what Autumn expected to find or how she was going to find her niece, but I could feel her stubbornness and determination. First, she meets a motley crew who help her to get settled in. Didi Oviatt did an amazing job with her character arc, showing her fear but at the same time her refusal to give in to it. She continued to grow in strength as the story progressed, pushing herself to do some pretty risky things. Daily runs in the bad area of town had me sitting on the edge of my seat, and breaking into the house of a known criminal had my palms sweaty!

In the midst of the suspense, a hot, steamy romance adds flavour and spices things up! Great job on that–not too much, just enough to leave the reader wanting more. I loved these two as a couple!

There was also enough information left out of the story to make the reader question who was the good guy and who was bad. Dirty cops, and undercover agents, anybody could have put Autumn, at risk.

I highly recommend this book if you love suspense and a good mystery. If you’d like to learn more about the author, please visit her blog at didioviatt.wordpress.com.

Thanks for reading!

Jo-Ann