Monday, February 24, 2014

Review - Sins and Needles by Karina Halle

Book Summary (Book 1)

My Review - 3 1/2

I think this cover is stunning, that is what drew me to this book first, then it also was on many Top Ten favourite lists of  2013.  Overall, it wasn't my cup of tea and I have been thinking about it for a couple of week on how to review.

I did enjoy the characters in the book, they were strong.  Angelina Jolie type - Ellie (Tomb Raider mixed with Mr. and Mrs. Smith) meets Johnny Depp type - Camden (Edward Scissorhands).  Ellie is a con artist and Camden a tattoo artist.  They knew each other in high school and meet again when Ellie is running, she goes back to her hometown and meets up with the now gorgeous Camden.  Both have similar lifestyles they want to run from, she is running from drug lords and he wants to run from a mob that is blackmailing him.

The tension in the story was done well and captured your attention, it just didn't have me sitting on the edge of my seat, almost can see the outcomes of issues even when they were ridiculous. Ellie is a train wreck but I had to remind myself her life of being a con artists was like a drug addict, she was addicted and scared of what life would mean being 'clean', she was afraid of the unknown.

The action and emotional tension makes for a great story but it felt like a whole lot of nothing at the end.  The issue for me is that this is a series and I am a stand alone fan, so the fact that you don't get anywhere, you have to wait for sequels etc just doesn't do it for me.

The steamy scenes were hot, raw emotional sex, not romantic in the vanilla/normal sense if that is an issue for you.  Again, I actually liked Ellie and Camden together, dysfunctional but loving couple if you can call them that. Maybe it was a little ghetto/trashy for me, like watching a reality show were you were embarrassed for the cast as they were making absolute fools of themselves, but it is not funny.

I am on the fence about reading the next in the series.  I want to know what is next but do I want to have to read 2-3 more books, very doubtful.

I did enjoy the writing of Karina Halle and think I will love a stand alone story by her.

Memorable Quote

We all make our own paths in life.  Everyone we meet, everything we do, it changes us.  It makes us who we are.  And, if we're lucky, we're given the change to make things right again."  Kindle at 85%

Thursday, February 20, 2014

WoW - She has your Eyes by Elisa Lorello

Book Summary

Andi and David have settled happily into Andi's Northampton home, but David wants more.  He wants them to get married.  Their discussion is put on hold when Wylie, a fifteen-year-old girl, shows up in their backyard, bearing news that takes David's mind off the future and sends it spiraling into the past.  Reeling from David's news, Andi receives a startling announcement of her own, one that leads to a relationship with her estranged mother.  As Andi and her mother get closer and Whylie weaves her way into their lives, Andi finds solace in an old comfort: her ex-fiance.  With the past threatening to eclipse their future, the timing for a wedding is all wrong.  But if Andi knows anything about timing, it's that there's no time to waste.

My Review - Faking It - 5 star

Ordinary World - 3 1/2 star (I didn't review)

Some of you may remember, I absolutely loved Faking It, it was on my 2014 Top Ten list.  I finished in and downloaded Ordinary World immediately to read, something I never do.  I loved the continuation of characters but Book 2 wasn't what I expected overall.

I am very excited to read the follow up - She has your Eyes.  Review is scheduled for March 6.  I recommend reading in order.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Monday - What are you reading?

Sheila over at Book Journey has an incentive for networking so go over and have fun while adding to your 2014 Wishlist.

I will be starting this one today, my first by Sophie Littlefield

Book Summary

Jen Glass has worked hard to achieve the ideal life: a successful career, a beautiful home in an affluent suburb of Minneapolis, a seemingly perfect family. But inside the Glass house, everything is spinning out of Jen's control. Her marriage to her husband, Ted, is on the brink of collapse; her fifteen-year-old daughter grows more distant each day; and her five-year-old son barely speaks a word. Jen is on the verge of breaking, but nothing could have prepared her for what is to come….

On an evening that was supposed to be like any other, two men force their way into the Glasses' home, but what begins as a common robbery takes an even more terrifying turn. Held hostage in the basement for more than forty-eight hours, Jen and Ted must put aside their differences if they have any hope of survival. They will stop at nothing to keep their family safe—even if it means risking their own lives. A taut and emotional tale of a family brought together by extraordinary forces, House of Glass is a harrowing exploration of the lengths a mother will go to protect her children, and the power of tragedy to teach us what truly matters.

I completed and am working on review, maybe this week

Last week I reviewed these two

Personal Note

We move into our new house in April so we flew to NC to come to Furniture Land South, OMG, what an amazing experience.  I totally recommend for anyone decorating their home with all new furniture.

And if you watch the show Tanked, the fish tank they did looks great in person too.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Review - Comfort of Lies by Randy Susan Meyers

Summary from Amazon

Five years ago, Tia fell into obsessive love with a man she could never have. Married, and the father of two boys, Nathan was unavailable in every way. When she became pregnant, he disappeared, and she gave up her baby for adoption.

Five years ago, Caroline, a dedicated pathologist, reluctantly adopted a baby to please her husband. She prayed her misgivings would disappear; instead, she’s questioning whether she’s cut out for the role of wife and mother.

Five years ago, Juliette considered her life ideal: she had a solid marriage, two beautiful young sons, and a thriving business. Then she discovered Nathan’s affair. He promised he’d never stray again, and she trusted him.

But when Juliette intercepts a letter to her husband from Tia that contains pictures of a child with a deep resemblance to her husband, her world crumbles once more. How could Nathan deny his daughter? And if he’s kept this a secret from her, what else is he hiding? Desperate for the truth, Juliette goes in search of the little girl. And before long, the three women and Nathan are on a collision course with consequences that none of them could have predicted.

My Review - 4 1/2

I really enjoyed this story, genuine feel to it but only if you have been through it as one of the women in the book, a friend, mom or counselor.  Those that have huge judgments against anything to do with an affair I recommend to stay away from this book, I don't see many being able to enjoy the writing and story without hating it if the topic is a trigger for you.

I loved the title Comfort of Lies, I didn't think it was so much the affair which was an obvious lie and not even the white lies but rather the waiting for the right time to divulge information necessary for loved ones to make important decisions, which definitely is a comfort at the time for the one withholding the information. 

I most understood the story of Caroline, she was the woman who adopted the baby girl created from the affair.  She wanted to please her husband and wanted to be the perfect career mom without having to give up her career.  She had ill feelings on giving quality time to her daughter and doing 'mommy' things.  I think some moms will have a hard time understanding her thoughts but I found them to be honest and when she finally gave enough of those thoughts to her husband, he supported her through them.

Tia who had the affair, loved Nathan, he was her everything and she knew he shouldn't have been but he was a real 'true love', to her.  I understood this love too, love shadowed her thoughts, she didn't think, love took over.  I understood why she decided to give her daughter up for adoption, this was explained well.  Tia's journey was intriguing, I got it and appreciated her character.

Juliette was the most complex to me.  She had what some would call a charmed life, recognised and appreciated it.  Her husband was honest about the affair when he ended it and she worked through it, not easily but she did until the letter arrives saying he has a 5 year old daughter.  Juliette's reaction was extreme but again I got it, when the rug is pulled from under you, do you really know how you will fall or if you will balance without falling.  You can say how you will react but you never really know.

Great storyline, I really enjoyed every moment.  All the women connect at some point because Tia chose an open adoption, we learn a lot about this choice.  My favourite is that it was told by the multiple characters, the women and Nathan, I love this style, it was done perfectly.

 Memorable Quote

"The philosophy of comfort does not take into consideration several very important factors, one being that open adoption should not be based on making the adults involved comfortable; rather it should be about providing for the needs of the child."

My Review of her debut - The Murderer's Daughters - I gave it 3 1/2  - I saw huge growth with her writing, she used the style of using multiple narrators again but in Comfort of Lies it was perfect.


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Review - Anybody's Daughter by Pamela Samuels Young

Summary from author's website - Pamela Samuels Young

When 13-year-old Brianna is ensnarled in the horrifying world of human sex trafficking, her Uncle Dre, a man with his own criminal past, scours the dark corners of L.A. determined to find her. Dre ultimately comes up with a daring plan that puts many lives in danger—including his own. But will he find Brianna before it's too late?

Published by Goldman House Publishing, October 2013

My Review - 4 1/2

Pamela Samuels Young has became an author I must read when she releases something new.  I was even more excited to find this was a follow up to her book Buying Time, we get to have more from characters Angela and Dre in book 2 of the Angela Evans series.

A great heart wrenching race to the end while reading this action packed thriller.  The bonus is we get statistics on child trafficking which makes the journey more frightening and real to read.  Social media has put a whole new dangerous issue for parents to have to deal with.  Brianna is 13 and excited to go and meet her secret boyfriend for the first time, only to be taken into the life of human sex trafficking. 

Those that picked her up didn't do their due diligence this time and they now have to deal with her Uncle Dre trying to rescue her by putting their business at risk.  He knows the streets as he was a drug dealer and he takes action into his own hands when police do not take the family serious.  I enjoyed Dre's character before, his a man both women and men enjoy being around.  He knew when to get off the streets because he was a businessman but he was also dealing with a businessman that paid others to get their hands dirty.

We also meet Loretha who used to be on the streets and now has a safe house for young girls on the street.  I enjoyed her story, the protector of giving girls a way out but also helping them to be a witness against their pimps.  Dre's ex girlfriend Angela, is a lawyer and helps with girls.  Some consider them to just as bad as the pimps for being a prostitute but what we learn in the story is that these girls are sexually exploited children and manipulated. 

The additional storylines were great, adding additional suspense to the puzzle.  Even though I read this genre all the time and know how it will end, great authors spin enough to keep you on the edge of your seat and throw in the gut wrenching emotional punches.

You are touched by the story and want to help.  They give you websites asking for you to consider donating time or financial support to stop human trafficking.

Such a great read, if you haven't read a book by Pamela Samuels Young, you must try her.

My Reviews

Buying Time
Murder on the Down Low

Thank you to Pump Up Your Book Tours for allowing me to review this book.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

It's Monday again, what are you reading?

Sheila over at Book Journey has an incentive for networking so go over and have fun while adding to your 2014 Wishlist.

I just completed this one, really enjoyed it 4 1/2, review up on Wednesday.

I reviewed for tour - 4 1/2, my review here

I'm currently reading

I'm considering to read next but may change, I'm a mood reader

What are your reading plans this week?


Monday, February 3, 2014

Monday, What are you reading?

Sheila over at Book Journey has an incentive for networking so go over and have fun while adding to your 2014 Wishlist.

I'm currently reading

Book Summary

Ellie Watt is used to starting over. The daughter of a grifting team, Ellie spent her childhood being used as a pawn in her parents' latest scam. Now she's much older, wiser and ready to give her con artist life a rest. But returning to the dry desert town of Palm Valley, California means one more temptation than she bargained for - Camden McQueen. Once known as the high school weirdo, Camden is bigger and badder than the boy he used to be and a talented tattoo artist with his own thriving business. Ellie's counting on Camden still being in love with her but what she's not counting on is how easily unrequited love can turn into obsession over time. When Camden discovers Ellie's plan to con him, he makes her a deal she doesn't dare refuse, but her freedom comes with a price and it's one that takes both Ellie and Camden down a dangerous road.

I reviewed - 4 1/2 - My Review

I completed an ARC,  review up on Feb 6
Have you heard of this series?  I may try this next.