Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Maegan's review of The Glass Apple by Robert Franks

Reviewed by -- Maegan Schaefer

Book Review of – The Glass Apple by Robert Franks        

My overall star rating -- 5

About the book:
For orphans Jason, Kylie and Anna, magic was not a word that featured largely in their lives. At least, not until their american grandfather took them in. A comical old man with a name to match. Ethelbert Gobswistle. A magical campervan called Edsel transports them up to Yorkshire, where, in a bungalow called Cookiecrumb, they meet Gobswistle's friend, a black plastic Christmas Fairy called Etain. Rambunctious, authoritative and opinionated, she brooks no nonsense from either the children or the old man. And gradually, the small group becomes a family. But an ancient mythical witch, The Medb, pursues the old man and his family. She seeks his source of magic, the Anguinum, a powerful crystal carved to resemble a green glass apple shaped bowl. As they flee from her wrath, they seek the help of the Gwyllion, ancient fairies, who tell them they need three magical books in order to stop the ancient witch. But the books are hidden in the past. . .

Book creation ratings:
Overall total -- 27 out of a possible 30
-- Story & characters -- 10
-- Cover & title -- 8
-- Editing -- 9
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The review --
Upon starting this book, it seems similar to “The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe”, but getting further on, more like “Fablehaven” got mixed in with it. The book was wonderful start to finish; I had a hard time putting it down. Truly fell in love with the main characters and am looking forward to reading the next book in the series. The book ends as a major cliff hanger. Be prepared to be a little upset when you read the last words. Some of the characters speak in old English. This can be confusing, but if one reads the words out loud, you will know what is being said.

Reader Recommendations
Genre – Young Adult/ Fantasy
Age recommendations – 8+
Sex content rating -- none
Violence rating – The is a little but not very graphic/gory, just intense some moments

** The author's links **

Amazon

Amazon author page

Facebook page

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Jacqueline's review of Girl of My Dreams by Morgan Mandel

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of -- Girl of My Dreams by Morgan Mandel

Overall star rating --- 5


About the book:
Follow the madcap adventures of a straitlaced assistant who sneaks onto the set of a reality show to win a billionaire.

When the producer discovers her ruse, he’s beside himself with rage. He’d thought better of her, but it looks like she’s only a gold digger.

What’s worse, she’s advancing in the rounds. She may even win the billionaire, but is he the guy she really wants?

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 --
I love this book, it's wonderful. Great romance with a touch of humor. In trying to help her boss, she causes problems for him, which makes for a delicious read. The characters are great, and so is the story. There's nothing better than a good romance novel, and this one is a good one. This book has everything you want in a good romance novel:  great story, great characters, and great writing.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- romance
Age recommendations -- 18 plus
Sex content rating -- moderate
Violence rating -- nil, none

Morgan Mandel's Romantic Comedy, 
GIRL OF MY DREAMS
 CLICK BELOW FOR YOUR COUNTRY LINK -

** Author's **

amazon page

website

facebook page

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Jacqueline's review of Taken With A Grain Of Salt by Aaron Galvin

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of -- Taken With A Grain Of Salt (Salt Series Book 2) by Aaron Galvin 

Overall star rating --- 5

About the book:
Anyone can be taken - a simple truth for Salt folk, a stark reality for innocent teens Garrett Weaver and Kellen Winstel. Kidnapped by Selkie slave catchers and dragged into the realm beneath the waves, both teens must adapt to their new surroundings if they hope to see the shore again. 

Yet even if they escape their captors, both will need to embrace their fears. For darker things than Selkies lurk in the Salted depths and not all of them have pure intentions for the innocent ones brought down into their watery world.  

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 --
This book is the sequel to Aaron's first book in this series, Salted; which I reviewed

The first book introduces you to the salted world, and the characters. The second book continues their stories, and you'll love it. So you'll want to read the first book in the series before you read this one. But I highly recommend both. This isn't just a 5 star book, it's a 5 star series.

The first book was very good, but this one is even better. It's an awesome series and the author is an awesome writer. This book has a different take on undersea angle, but it has a fast pace that you'll love. I know I did. It's one of those books that you won't want to put down. Both books are simply awesome. I look forward to more in this fantastic series.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- fantasy, science fiction
Age recommendations -- 18 plus
Sex content rating -- mild
Violence rating -- intense

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's website 

Author's facebook page

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Maegan's review of Chasing the Dead by Joel Goldman

Reviewed by -- Maegan
        
Book Review of -- Chasing the Dead by Joel Goldman
        
My overall star rating --- 5   
     
About the book:
The dead never lay easy until someone speaks for them.

Public Defender Alex Stone is appointed to represent Jared Bell a homeless veteran struggling with his demons who is accused of raping and murdering a prostitute. Though pressured to railroad Jared straight to death row, Alex risks everything to prove he's innocent in spite of his confession.

And, when a close friend leaves Alex a blood-curdling message the instant before she's murdered, Alex becomes the killer's next target.
        
Book creation ratings:
Overall total -- 26 out of a possible 30
-- Story & characters -- 10        
-- Cover & title -- 10        
-- Editing & formatting -- 6        
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The review --
The proofreader for the book did not do such a great job. There are misspelled words and the flow in parts of the story is not that great. The plot was awesome for me and kept me engaged as well as wondering about twists that might happen. The main character is lesbian. Some might like to know this in advance. In the end of the book, the author has tied up the loose ends for this mystery, but has started into another; which has me thinking/hoping that there might be another book coming. If you like murder mysteries and quick reads, this is a book for you.                

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- Murder Mystery        
Age recommendations -- 16 or up based on the details of the murder scenes        
Sex content rating -- mild        
Violence rating -- moderate as it is a murder mystery        

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's facebook page

Author's website

Friday, October 9, 2015

Bookaholic's review of Mad Science Institute by Sechin Tower

Reviewed by -- Bookaholic
        
Book Review of -- Mad Science Institute by Sechin Tower        

My overall star rating --- 4
        
About the book:
Sophia “Soap” Lazarcheck is a girl genius with a knack for making robots—and for making robots explode. After her talents earn her admission into a secretive university institute, she is swiftly drawn into a conspiracy more than a century in the making. Meanwhile and without her knowledge, her cousin Dean wages a two-fisted war of vengeance against a villainous genius and his unwashed minions. Separately, the cousins must pit themselves against murderous thugs, experimental weaponry, lizard monsters, and a nefarious doomsday device. When their paths finally meet up, they will need to risk everything to prevent a mysterious technology from bringing civilization to a sudden and very messy end. 

Book creation ratings:
Overall total -- 23 out of a possible 30
-- Story & characters -- 7
-- Cover & title -- 7
-- Editing & formatting -- 9
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The review --
This story starts off with explosions and just gets better! The character, Soap, is a girl who never met a robot she didn't like. In fact, she cannot breathe without modding, morphing, inventing, and of course, blowing things up. While at the same time, she is so clueless about making friends that she observes the popular girl and makes up a checklist/template for how to have a conversation.

She finds herself at a school for kid geniuses, which was founded by...guess who...Nikola Tesla! (Which is why I read this book in the first place.) The plot revolves around an Evil Professor and his nefarious plot for world domination. These kind of storylines are about as deep as a comic book. You've got weird devices, a motorcycle gang, and...oh yeah, some kind of underground dinosaur civilization. It didn't make much sense, but who cares? The main appeal for me is the character Soap and her wry observations about life. Oh, there is also an index of devices in the back, where you might actually learn something.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- Science Fiction        
Age recommendations -- 12, Good for young adult and young-at-heart
Sex content rating -- There are no sex scenes.        
Violence rating -- There is some violence with motorcycle gangs, but it is not graphic.   
                                                                                     
Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's facebook page

Author's website

Jacqueline's holiday review of Playing Santa by H.Y. Hanna

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers
-- note from me -- Every year, about this time of year, I start my holiday reading; and this year is no exception. This is the first of my holiday reviews. To find more of my holiday reviews, simply check for 'holiday review' in the title.

Book Review of -- Playing Santa (Summer Beach Vets Christmas Romance) by H.Y. Hanna

Overall star rating --- 5

About the book:
Holly stopped believing in magic long ago... until a chance meeting lands her a dream vacation in Australia. When she rescues a litter of abandoned puppies and meets a handsome Aussie veterinarian who captures her heart, she finds herself tempted to give up everything for a chance at love.

The last thing billionaire vet Dr Nick Forrester expected when helping out at the animal hospital was to meet this pretty American. He knows that they belong together - but with malicious gossip and culture clash coming between them, can he convince Holly that they could have a future together? 

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 --
This was a wonderful book, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I snagged this book on a free download back during Christmas 2014, when I was doing my Christmas book reading. But this is a wonderful book for any time of the year. The characters are engaging and wonderful; the story is awesome. The location . . . well, it's Australia, and it's great, really well described. And the book has a wonderful happily ever after ending that you'll just love.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- romance
Age recommendations -- 18 plus
Sex content rating -- mild
Violence rating -- none

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's facebook page

Author's website

Monday, October 5, 2015

Shadow's review of The Trouble With Toads by Danyelle Leafty

Reviewed by -- Shadow Walker

Book Review of -- The Trouble With Toads by Danyelle Leafty        

Overall star rating --- 4 
    

About the book:
Once upon a time a young girl wanted revenge. But first, she wanted to be beautiful. 

Twelve-year-old Bettony has read enough stories that begin with once upon a time to know what happens to the ugly stepsisters at the end, and she’s determined to escape that fate by any means necessary—even by magic. 

Unfortunately, when it comes to magic, there is no place for regret, refunds, or exchanges. Even if you accidentally turn your older sister into a toad. 

If Bettony wants her happily ever after to end well, she’s going to have to find a way to turn her sister back into a person before their mother finds out she’s been dabbling with magic and grounds her for life. And if she wants to do that, she’s going to need more magic. 

Tracking down the family magic turns out to be surprisingly easy. Now, if only it came with instructions . . .

Book creation ratings:
Overall total -- 27 out of a possible 30
-- Story & characters -- 8
-- Cover & title -- 10
-- Editing & formatting -- 9
* based on a 1-10 scale with:  1-4, poor; 5-7, good; 8-10, very good.*

The review --
It's important to know that this is the first in the series, so read it before The Trouble With Magic. It explains all the questions that I had at the beginning of the second book. The problems that I had getting into the book rest with me and not the author, as I started on book 2 instead of 1. But the book is very well written and a strong story awaits the reader of this book.

The characters are delightful and the pace of the book is excellent. It doesn't drag and will keep your attention from cover to cover. I am not an expert with editing, but there was no glaring mistakes, which is always a plus in a good book. The wording and phrasing helped give a picture in the reader's mind, which created an enjoyable book.

It's a strong stand alone book, but will excite the reader to read the second book, and you will want to read The Trouble With Magic. The finish is really good and a great lead into the next book, which you will enjoy.        
        
Reader Recommendations
Genre -- Fantasy
Age recommendations -- 9 and up
Sex content rating -- None
Violence rating -- None

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's twitter

Author's website
http://curiousleafpress.com/                                                                             

Friday, October 2, 2015

Jacqueline's review of Under the Black Ensign by L. Ron Hubbard

Reviewed by -- Jacqueline Driggers

Book Review of -- Under the Black Ensign by L. Ron Hubbard

Overall star rating --- 5

About the book:
Long before Captain Jack Sparrow raised hell with the Pirates of the Caribbean, Tom Bristol sailed to hell and back Under the Black Ensign. That’s where the real adventure begins.

Bristol’s had plenty of bad luck in his life. Press-ganged into serving aboard a British vessel, he’s felt the cruel captain’s lash on his back. Then, freed from his servitude by pirates, his good fortune immediately takes a bad turn . . . as the pirates accuse him of murder—and leave him to die on a deserted island. Now all he has left are a few drops of water, a gun, and just enough bullets to put himself out of his misery.

But Bristol’s luck is about to change. Finding himself in the unexpected company of a fiery woman and a crafty crew, he unsheathes his sword, raises a pirate flag of his own, and sets off to make love and war on the open seas.

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 --
This is a most excellent book! I so totally loved it! From the very beginning, it read like one of those pirate movies from the 30s and 40s that I love so much. Those movies got me so hooked on pirate movies and etc., and this book helps feed that love. The characters are great and the story is too. It has a wonderful ending that I totally loved. The ups and downs of our pirate hero draw you in and drive the story to a most satisfying conclusion. A great book that is excellently written, and well worth reading. Go have a pirate adventure today.

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- adventure, romance, pirates
Age recommendations -- 15 and up
Sex content rating -- practically none
Violence rating -- moderate

Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's website

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Shadow's review of Deadly Catch by E. Michael Helms

Reviewed by -- Shadow Walker

Book Review of -- Deadly Catch, A Mac McClellan Mystery by E. Michael Helms
              
Overall star rating --- 5+
        
About the book:
After twenty-four years in the U.S. Marines, recently retired Mac McClellan is happy to be a civilian again. He is enjoying a leisurely fishing vacation in the Florida panhandle when he hooks a badly decomposed body.
Then, when a bag of rare marijuana is discovered stashed aboard his rental boat, he realizes someone is setting him up to take the fall for murder and drug smuggling. Mac’s plans for a more laid-back life must be put on hold while he works to clear his name as the number one suspect.
Mac launches an investigation with the help of Kate Bell, a feisty saleslady at the local marina with whom he has struck up a promising relationship. Along the way he must butt heads and match wits with local law enforcement officials, shady politicians, and strong-armed thugs from the Eastern Seaboard to sniff out and bring the real smuggler and killer to justice.

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 --
I knew after a paragraph that I was in for a great read. You have a very likable main character and there's nothing better than a well developed murder mystery. The vividness of his writing created mental pictures of the scenes throughout the book. His writing sucked me into the book. I literally couldn't put the book down! Hat's off to Mr. Helms. 

I would say that this is a classically written murder mystery. The author followed the rules of writing a murder mystery and challenges the reader to figure out who done it and why. The book will take you on a roller coaster of emotions, and Mac works his way through dangerous waters. I strongly suggest you read the book.        

The pace is quick with no dull moments. You won't fall asleep or experience mind drifting with this book. The book uses a wide variety of words and great sentence structure. It is well edited, which adds to the quality of the story. I knew after three paragraphs that the author was an experienced writer with a well thought out storyline.  

I simply loved this book and the good feeling it gave me at the end of it. I experienced shock, happiness, sadness, fear, suspense, and surprise; all within a 209 page book. I enjoyed every page and was astonished that I was exhausted when I finished it. That's a good read folks. The ending was very exciting with a few unexpected surprising moments. I think you'll like it. Enjoy!!!        

Reader Recommendations
Genre -- Classic Murder Mystery        
Age recommendations -- High School to Adult        
Sex content rating -- Very mild and tastefully done.        
Violence rating -- Mild to light moderate.  
                                                                                     
Links for the book:

Buy it on Amazon

Author's Amazon page

Author's facebook page


Author's website