Archive for July, 2016

Sarah Killian

July 29, 2016 - 10:09 pm No Comments

Sarah Killian-Serial Killer for Hire by Mark Sheldon
Published by Crystal Lake Publishing on 29th July 2016

reviewer: Yvonne Davies

The story is about a professional serial killer or PSK called Sarah Killian, she works for an organisation called THEM an organisation that uses serial killers to wipe out problems. Sarah is a very independent woman who grew up in a dysfunctional family and became a serial killer before she was recruited by THEM. The mission that she gets sent on makes her uncomfortable from the start, as for the first time she is paired up with Bethany, a newbie who is an annoying chatterbox. You can tell straight away that she is going to drive Sarah mad. Zeke her boss knows this and I personally think he enjoys winding Sarah up but will not change his decision. For the mission they have to go undercover as teachers, as the target is in a school. Sarah had to learn to adjust to be sweet and innocent curbing her swearing whilst keeping her cool with the Bethany
I really enjoyed this story as although I have read other stories about serial killers, they tend to concentrate on their target, but this book was different, yes they have a mission but the main story is about why Sarah and Bethany had to be paired for the mission. There was quite a bit of comedy in the book and some of the abbreviations brought a smile to my face. Sarah grew on me the more I read as at the start she was your typical bolshie female but later on in the book you find out some of her reasons for doing this type of work and that she did have a heart. Her coping mechanism to stop her killing anyone who wasn’t a target was funny; I didn’t think a cuddly toy could be used for that.
The story ended in a slight cliff hanger and I hope I do not have to wait too long for book 2.

Vigil

July 23, 2016 - 3:09 pm No Comments

Verity Fassbinder Book 1
Author: Angela Slatter
Publisher: Jo Fletcher Books
Page count: 351pp
Release date: 7th July 2016
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

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Jo Fletcher books (an imprint of Quercus) is fast becoming the publisher to go to for high quality, award level genre fiction. So, team up multi-award winner author Angela Slatter with her first full length novel, and you have pure gold.
Verity Fassbinder has her feet in two worlds; daughter of a human — and a Weyrd — she can walk in both worlds. Though she doesn’t have much power herself, her ability to walk between worlds is a valuable asset.  This lands her the job of keeping the peace between both races and ensuring the Weyrd stay hidden.
The Council of Five act as a sort of government of the Weyrd, having arrived over in the past from whatever old country they came from and established themselves. Verity’s  ex ‘Bela’ AKA Zvezdomir ‘Bela’ Vlad Tepes (you may recognise the name) turns up at Verity’s door one eve, looking drop-dead gorgeous as usual, if a little bit goth. He’s arrived in a distinctive purple taxi cab (Verity was injured during her last job for Bela and now sports a limp) driven by Ziggi, her usual chauffeur. Verity clambers into the car, complete with shrunken head Gris-Gris in the window, to find one of the Council of Five sitting there.
Over twenty children have gone missing, some normal, some Weyrd, and Bela is there as chief spy/cop/enforcer to hire her to find out where the children have gone and who has taken them.
This is a solid Urban Fantasy set in an ‘other’ Brisbane where the Weyrd blend in as the homeless, the drunk, the disenfranchised and the alternative community. Angela Slatter’s voice, though distinctively unique and hers, reminds me a little of Jim Butcher (Dresden files) and Seanan McGuire (The Incryptid and October Daye books). Predominantly because Slatter combines high octane, fast paced action with PI Procedural, a whole host of wonderful creatures (not just bog standard vampires and werewolves), a cracking sense of humour and a deeper thread running through it. That thread? Racism, prejudice and treatment of other. Slatter isn’t afraid to veer towards the issue of how ‘other’ is often treated and her cast of characters is wonderfully diverse. Add to this the ongoing tension between Bela and Verity (how can he really beget ex when she blooming well works with him?) and how this affects her, and you have a great addition to the genre, and one I predict will last  the long haul.
Smashing book which kept me reading through the night, as in, couldn’t put down! Splendidly written too.
5/5

Trying to Be so Quiet

July 22, 2016 - 1:02 am No Comments

Trying to be so Quiet by James Everington
Published by Boo Books on 12th July 2016s
52 pages

Reviewer: Yvonne Davies

 

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This story is about a man who has recently lost his wife Lizzie from Cancer, set over a couple of months after her death; it follows his life whilst he comes to terms with his loss.
This book is described as a ghost story, but the way the author has written this book, I think it is more than a ghost story. It is a story about bereavement and how the main character tries and gets on with his life. Whilst you are reading this book you really identify with the main character and you can feel his pain whilst he tries to just survive.

Throughout the house there are memories and he thinks that he is seeing Lizzie, is it a ghost or is it his grief playing tricks? Cracks appear in the house again; I felt that it was the cracks appearing in his life. I enjoyed how the author took him back to Oxford where he reminisced about where they met and were happier. This was the first book I have read by this author and I really enjoyed it. Although this is a short story there was so much packed in to the story it made a quick read, and you will  be lost in the story. Whilst you are reading, this have some tissues nearby because you will shed a tear at the raw grief.

A must read, it was wonderful

Dead of Winter

July 17, 2016 - 11:53 pm No Comments

Dead of Winter

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Gerri Brightwell
Publisher: Salt Publishing
Page Count: 239
Release date: 2016
Reviewed by Chris Amies

Mike Fisher is a slob. An overweight, down-on-his-luck cab driver in one
of the coldest places on Earth. All he really cares about is his teenage
daughter whom he rarely sees. So when he receives a message from her
that her step-dad is acting strangely – and then she vanishes – he,
reluctantly, is stirred into action and sets off to find her. He and his
‘permanently lost’ friend Grisby, in his taxi with a cartoon bear on the
door, in the depth of the Alaskan winter.

Which of course is when things start going really bad. Starting with a
visit to Breehan’s stepfather’s house, which they could have told
themselves was a bad idea but you have to start somewhere.

This novel moves along nicely and does give you a feel for being in such
a cold place – Gerri Brightwell has lived there for some years, having
moved there from the UK she has actually found somewhere even colder
than the UK to go and live in. Part of the reason it read so easily for
me was that it is told in the present tense, although third person. It
reminded me of the novels of Carl Hiaasen — although Hiaasen’s novels
are all set in Florida, where you most definitely do not freeze to death
if you lock yourself out. It does however cover matters of interest in
the present day United States such as militias (or would-be militias
based around a core belief in being too cheap to pay your taxes). There
are sufficient shenanigans and turns in the plot to keep the reader well
interested.

It was a good read.

Hellspawn

July 15, 2016 - 11:39 pm No Comments

Hellspawn

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Author: Ricky Fleet
Published by Optimus Maximus Publishing

release date 31st December 2015
Page Count: 314 Pages
Reviewer: Yvonne Davies
I came across this book as a recommendation from another author, and I am so glad that I bought it.
The story is about a regular family just like you and I. Kurt the father has just finished work and sees a sight that is just not right. From that moment it is a case of getting his family and surviving. On the way he gets some extra members to the group, including Braiden that has bullied his son Sam all the way through school and a semi-retired teacher Gloria or Mrs Blume to her pupils.
What I loved about this book was that as regular family that had no survival training but through working as a team they learn how to survive. Using everyday items they come up with ingenious ways to kill the zombies and to get on with everyday tasks. The back stories involving the secondary characters really help tell the story and as a mother my heart went out to Braiden when I find out why he bullies Sam, and it doesn’t take Sarah long to start forgiving Braiden for what he has done to her son. The relationship between Kurt and his dad is a bit tense but again the author does a great job explaining the reasons. Now what can I say about Mrs Blume, I bet we all had a teacher like that at school, but what I loved, when the time came to survive she wasn’t your prim and proper elderly lady, and she is my favourite character.
Yes this book is about zombies but it is so much more, it about families, love and survival. This is so well written that I did not want this book to finish and I have downloaded book 2 to continuing with this family’s journey, Full of action and fast paced a must for zombie lovers