Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Review - Mad Shadows by Joe Bonadonna

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of -- Mad Shadows: The Weird Tales of Dorgo the Dowser by Joe Bonadonna

Overall star rating --- 5

About the book:
Valdar is a city of swordslingers and necromancers, witch cults and halfhuman races. It’s a city in a world of darkness, black magic and creatures of the night . . . a city where demonic entities serve the needs of any witch or magicman who can open a doorway into their domain.

This is my city. This is my world.

With a special dowsing rod, I can detect the ectoplasmic residue of any supernatural presence or demonic entity and sense the vestiges of odylic power and vile sorcery used in the commission of crimes. I hunt anyone and anything that poses a threat to the people of my city. My name’s Dorgo. Folks call me the Dowser.

From infernal depths where lost souls mutate into hell-spawned devils, from the other side of the veil that separates the earthly from the unearthly, from an ancient land whose borders cross into other dimensions, Mad Shadows—The Weird Tales of Dorgo the Dowser, will transport you to a world where sentient shadows, vengeful vampires, malevolent puppets, and raging werewolves haunt the night . . . a world where life is cheap and souls are always up for sale.

Book creation ratings:
Overall total -- 30 out of a possible 30
-- Story & characters -- 10
-- Cover & title -- 10
-- Editing & formatting -- 10
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The review --
Just from the cover of this book, and the description, I wasn't sure if I would like it. But I did, I loved it! This is an excellent, very well written book. If you like science fiction and fantasy, you'll like this. The connecting thread throughout all the stories is that of the main character of Dorgo. I love this character. He's everything you would want of a main character. The author has surrounded the main character of Dorgo with a wealth of other characters that are equally as fascinating as Dorgo. The book combines elements of fantasy and paranormal, all into one wild land.  For me, this was one of those 'can't put it down' books that I devoured until I reached the last page. 

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- science fiction, fantasy, paranormal
Age recommendations -- 15 and up
Sex content rating -- minimal
Violence rating -- quite a bit

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's facebook page

Author's website

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Review - Love, Christmas by various authors

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of --
Love, Christmas - Holiday stories that will put a song in your heart! by various authors

Overall star rating --- 5

About the book:
Put a song in your heart with 20 all-new Christmas Romances from NY Times, USA Today, and national best-selling authors. Each brand-new title is inspired by a Christmas carol and will lift your spirits and bring on the holiday cheer.
We Need a Little Christmas by Leanne Banks - Can a handsome cynic become a Christmas believer? 
Frosty the Snowman by Mimi Barbour - Stranded in an Alaskan snowstorm, strangers Hali and Terry are forced to rely on each other for survival.   
Last Christmas by Joan Reeves - Annabelle gave him her heart, but Rick threw it away. He wants redemption, she wants revenge. 
Holly Jolly Christmas by Mona Risk - Pregnant at 18. Adoption would save the baby's future but may cost her the man she loves.
Do You Hear What I Hear? by Patricia Rosemoor - Live-in-lovers Shelley and Jake are now in a cold war of their own over Christmas.
White Christmas by Rebecca York - Was she in a coma, or was she in a Christmas fantasy?
So This is Christmas by Denise Devine - He was her child nemesis, now he's her best friend forever. 
Grown Up Christmas List by Donna Fasano - All she wants for Christmas is to feel safe... then she meets her guardian angel. 
Blue Christmas by the Sea by Traci Hall - Alone for Christmas, Tamsyn helps mystery writer Evan find his mojo--love is a gift neither can refuse.
Santa Baby by Taylor Lee - Lily's only hope was that this time, he wouldn't be able to find her.
Let It Snow by Stephanie Queen - A stranger and a snow storm on Christmas Eve create the ultimate test for Dane & Shana.
Merry, Did You Know? by Jennifer St. Giles - Can a Christmas Miracle change the future of a woman who doesn't believe in love and a man who can't love again?
O Christmas Tree by Alicia Street - Can Piper convince Cody to let go of his painful past and embrace the hope of Christmas and possibly love?
Sleigh Ride by Katy Walters - Miss Sophia Vale faces poverty. Enter the Earl of Breconbridge, renowned as a rake hell with a conscience.
Deck the Hearts by Rachelle Ayala - Can Holly's jolly Christmas spirit help Grinch Gordon Gills save the town of Christmas Creek?
Silver Bells by Jacquie Biggar - Can a Christmas wish bring two stubborn souls together and give a little girl the gift she wants?
Hark the Herald Angel Falls by Michele Hauf - To earn her halo, angel Merit must convince the person who holds her earthly soul in limbo--her husband--to stop loving her.
Little Drummer Boy by Dani Haviland - How could a mere drummer boy help those stranded in the worst winter storm of the 18th century?
I'll Be Home For Christmas by Nancy Radke - When former a former Navy SEAL plucks a woman from the Mediterranean Sea, he discovers a fighter tougher than he.
Santa Claus is Coming to Town by Cynthia Cooke - A big city girl reunites with a small town boy--magic. A Santa in need of an elf--Christmas magic.

Book creation ratings --
Overall total, out of 30 -- 30
-- Story & characters -- 10
-- Cover & title -- 10
-- Editing & formatting -- 10
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The Christmas Quotient --- 7
** The scale runs from 1-7 trees, and rates Christmassyness. **

The review --
This is a very delightful Christmas box set. All the stories are inspired by Christmas songs! That's so neat and so different. Another thing that makes this box set different is you have a blend of genres, as there is historical romance stories too.

It's wonderful collection of stories by a great group of authors, several of whom I'm familiar with. This is a great box set for any time of the year, not just Christmas. And there's not a clunker in the set, as all books are 3 stars and better. Many are 5 star stories. I enjoyed reading it and highly recommend this box set. You definitely get your money's worth, and get to meet several different authors.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- romance, historical romance
Age recommendations -- 17 plus
Sex content rating -- mild
Violence rating -- mild

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Monday, January 9, 2017

Review - Sweet Christmas Kisses 3

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of --
Sweet Christmas Kisses 3: A Bundle of 17 Wholesome Holiday Romances

Overall star rating --- 5


About the book:
Ring in the holiday season with 17 all-new, stand-alone stories from New York Times, USA Today, national bestselling, and award-winning authors. Sweet Christmas Kisses 3 takes you around the globe from small-town USA, to London, England, and even to Africa. Don't miss out on this sweet romance boxed set that's sure to touch your heart, make you smile, and put you in the mood for Christmas.
Mona Risk, On Christmas Eve
Christine Bush, Christmas Holly
Lyn Cote, Mistletoe and Sage
Denise Devine, A Merry Little Christmas
Raine English, The Christmas Gift
Shanna Hatfield, Untangling Christmas
Ciara Knight, A Christmas on Miracle Mountain
Milou Koenings, The Kampala Peppermint Twist
Magdalena Scott, The Road Not Taken
Roxanne Rustand, A London Christmas
Alicia Street, Her Christmas Secret
Kristin Wallace, Falling For You at Christmas
Merrillee Whren, Second Chance Christmas
Cindy Flores Martinez, Christmas Eve Wedding
Victoria Pinder, Secret Wish
Josie Riviera, Candleglow and Mistletoe
Pat Simmons, Couple by Christmas

Book creation ratings -- Max. total of 30 possible --
Overall total, out of 30 -- 28
-- Story & characters -- 8
-- Cover & title -- 10
-- Editing & formatting -- 10
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The Christmas Quotient --- 7
** The scale runs from 1-7 trees, and rates Christmassyness. **

The review --
This is a fun box set to read, whether at Christmas or any other time of the year. There's a great group of romance stories here, from an esteemed group of writers. If you like romance, this is one to grab and read, especially since sometimes these box sets like this are available for only a limited time.

I really enjoyed reading this one, and of course, as with any box set, there are some you enjoy more than others. But, there wasn't a clunker in the set at all. All books in the box set are 3 or above. It's an excellent box set that makes for great reading any time of the year.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- romance
Age recommendations -- 17 plus
Sex content rating -- mild
Violence rating -- mild

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Review - Find Me a Home by Mimi Barbour

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of --
Find Me a Home (Holiday Heartwarmers Book 3) by Mimi Barbour

Overall star rating --- 3

About the book:
Wheelchair bound, Amelia Lloyd is embarrassed when the neighbor calls the police to deal with her out-of-control brother. Her old dog tries to protect her but it takes the combined efforts of a handsome police Sergeant and a crabby puppy to put a stop to her sibling’s shenanigans. At first, she hates to be caught in such a situation. But then she accepts an important truth. The big-hearted man, her savior, wouldn’t have come into her life otherwise.

Sergeant Harley Carlton is exhausted from dealing with a car accident where everyone is killed except for the darling cherub who decides she’s his daddy. How can a man with a heart as big as his, correct the precious little orphan? Within a few hours, he gets a call to save a blonde-haired beauty from her crazy brother. So how can a man fall in love twice in one night?

Book creation ratings -- Max. total of 30 possible --
Overall total, out of 30 -- 25
-- Story & characters -- 7
-- Cover & title -- 9
-- Editing & formatting -- 9
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The Christmas Quotient --- 1
** The scale runs from 1-7 trees, and rates Christmassyness. **

The review --
Okay, this book ranked real low on my Christmassy scale because it gets off to a rather gruesome start; an accident where 2 people are killed. The story gets better as it goes along, but the beginning of it doesn't win me over. There is a rather sad theme that runs through it, although it does have a nice enough ending. But it's not a real Christmassy book, and not one of my faves.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- romance
Age recommendations -- 18 plus
Sex content rating -- moderate
Violence rating -- moderate, gruesome accident scene

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Visit her blog at

Sign up for her monthly newsletter

Follow Mimi on Facebook

Follow her on Twitter

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Review - Gingerbread Bride By Jude Knight

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of --
Gingerbread Bride By Jude Knight

Overall star rating --- 5

About the book:
Lieutenant Rick Redepenning has been saving his admiral’s intrepid daughter from danger since their formative years, but today, he faces the gravest of threats--the damage she might do to his heart. How can he convince her to see him as a suitor, not just a childhood friend?

Travelling with her father’s fleet has left Mary Pritchard ill-prepared for London Society, and prey to the machinations of false friends. When she strikes out on her own to find a more suitable locale to take up her solitary spinsterhood, she finds adventure, trouble, and her girlhood hero, riding once more to her rescue.

This novella first appeared in the Bluestocking Belles box set Mistletoe, Marriage, and Mayhem.

Book creation ratings --
Overall total, out of 30 -- 30
-- Story & characters -- 10
-- Cover & title -- 10
-- Editing & formatting -- 10
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The review --
He's rescued her, so many times, that it's become second nature for him to rescue her. And she doesn't intend to get into the fixes she does, but still, she finds herself there. This is a deliciously wonderful romance novel with an air of fun and danger about it. I love it!

The characters are bright and crisp, and leap off the page. This is such an enchanting story. She so surprised when he shows up to rescue her, and he's not surprised to find her in need of rescuing. A wonderful book with a great ending, one you'll definitely want to read.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- historical romance
Age recommendations -- 17 and up
Sex content rating -- none
Violence rating -- mild

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Buy it on smashwords

Author's Amazon page

Author's twitter

Author's website

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Review - Joy to the World by Nicole Zoltack

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of --
Joy to the World by Nicole Zoltack

Overall star rating --- 5

About the book:
Unbeknownst to Eliza Berkeley, the second daughter of a baron, the man she thought she was going to marry was not Stephen Huntington, the Duke of Wyndale. Thankfully, the reprobate does not appear for the wedding. The true duke arrives instead. Will a match formed originally through deceit blossom into love this Christmas? Or will the imposter ensure neither experiences happiness ever again?

Joy to the World originally appeared in the Bluestocking Belles' Mistletoe, Marriage, & Mayhem box set.

Book creation ratings --
Overall total, out of 30 -- 30
-- Story & characters -- 10
-- Cover & title -- 10
-- Editing & formatting -- 10
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The Christmas Quotient --- 7 
** The scale runs from 1-7 trees, and rates Christmassyness. **

The review --
She's supposed to marry one man, then another shows up, using the same name. What's a girl to do. And that's the beginning of this wonderful Christmas romance novel that has a thrilling ending.

The man whose marriage proposal she accepts, wasn't the man who the name belonged to. But on her wedding day, in search of the phony, the real Duke shows up. It's a great story, fine characters, and I loved it. Fine piece of writing here in this book, and I recommend it very much.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- historical romance
Age recommendations -- 17 plus
Sex content rating -- mild, only kisses, hand holding
Violence rating -- mild

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's facebook page

Author's website

Street team on facebook

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Review - On Christmas Hill by Faith Mortimer

Reviewed by -- Shadow Walker

Book Review of --
On Christmas Hill (A Seasonal Affair) (Affair Series Book 2) by Faith Mortimer

Overall star rating --- 5   
    

About the book:
It is a few weeks before Christmas and everyone except Catherine seems to be gearing up for the big day with excitement.

Catherine is a single mum, struggling to bring up her five year old daughter, she has little time for romance, and when she learns she has lost her job and her flat is deemed inhabitable, she wonders just what else life is about to fling at her.

Where or to whom can she turn to for help? Kismet in the shape of handsome, bachelor, Jack Darcy aka Father Christmas is at hand. But can she trust the handsome stranger who seems to know a lot about her private life, and why does he introduce her to his favourite place up on Christmas Hill?

When Catherine finds a forty year old letter hidden in a village post office and seeks to reunite the letter with the addressee, little does she know what part she will play in the affair or how circumstances change her very existence. Her own ideas of weddings and being a bride seem remote. When will she find that perfect love which so far has eluded her?

Book creation ratings:
Overall total, out of 30 -- 30        
-- Story & characters -- 10        
-- Cover & title -- 10        
-- Editing & formatting -- 10        
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The review --
Only a village idiot would give this book less than five stars. This Christmas Romance is set during the Christmas Season in England. The story is so well written and the character development is A+. The editor and proofreader needs a good slap on the back for their work on this book. It was so good that I read it in a couple of sittings and tears filled my eyes at it's conclusion. The story moves along at a nice pace and you can't help but pull for the main character, Catherine and her sweet daughter. This story will not disappoint any reader who loves romantic novels at Christmas time. Merry Christmas and enjoy this delightful book.         
                
The Christmas Quotient --- 7
** The scale runs from 1-7 trees, and rates Christmassyness. **

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- Christmas Romance  
Age recommendations -- 16 and older.        
Sex content rating -- Moderate. Tastefully done.        
Violence rating -- None.

** The author's links **

Amazon

Amazon author page

Facebook page

Website