Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Perk Noir by Chris Garson

March 26, 2017 - 10:38 am No Comments

Perk Noir by Chris Garson

Published by Optimus Maximus Publishing on 6th July 2016

375 pages

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

After getting injured on the field, former American Football player Mason Barnes became an author. He has a created a series about a ninja spy Mia Killjoy who can kill any assailant with her lady parts, loved by a niche audience all Mason wants to do is to win a Pulitzer. Mason does his writing at Perk Noir, a coffee shop dedicated to Earl “Lightening” Perkins, original owner and little known Jazz player. Being a big fan of Lightening, Mason knew there was more to his life and if he wanted to win that prestigious award, then he would have to investigate and write Lightening’s story. Helping with this story was Shelly a big Mason, Cosplay and Mia fan, who’s family heirloom kicked started the Lightening investigation, but he knew that he had to get to the story before his nemesis, Bancroft.

The way the author described Mason you have a definite picture in your mind whilst reading this story. I found him to be a loveable character, a gentle giant who had a fascination for people’s head size. When he joined up with Shelly their partnership was solid and I felt that she bought out the best in Mason and was always worrying about his wellbeing, especially when Mason suffers a health scare.  Although young in age, she was very mature and was full of confidence and I liked the way that she did not care what people thought about her. The detail that the author put into each character even the minor ones, added more depth to the story. I was instantly drawn to Brett Barlow, the café owner and Professor Harrison Coopers-Clarke Mason’s mentor and I would like to know more about them

Weaving from past to present, helped tell the story of Mason’s investigation, without it being confusing. Lightening’s story was so convincing that I had believed that he was an actual Jazz player. This is a well written book, with a great plot full of twists and turns. I did not want the story to finish but I could not put it down. It had me laughing at Mia’s antics and the constant comparison of head sizes and the final twist I am sure I just sat there with my mouth agape as I definitely did not see that coming.

This is a great story and not just for mystery lovers. I want to read more of Mason and I want to know if Snippy ever loses weight.

Aletheia by JS Breukelaar

March 24, 2017 - 5:33 pm No Comments

Aletheia by JS Breukelaar

Published by Crystal Lake publishing on 24th March 2017

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

Thettie Harpur was going home, after 10 years away, wanting to make peace with her cousin Frankie. Going back to Little Ridge, brings back memories and even though the town has changed, people’s views of the Harpur clan hasn’t. Running the clan now was Doc Murphy, a man with a dangerous past who was not one to share his secrets. On arriving Thettie meets up with a local artist who is still haunted by the disappearance of his son and the death of his wife. His only friend is Vernon, a Gila Monster, a lizard rescued from a medical lab whose venom had amazing qualities. Can Thettie get to the mysterious Island and make peace with Frankie? and who is Bryce and why did she find out the Harpurs?

Throughout the book, you are introduced to a lot of characters, each having their individual story but each story interlinked. Whilst reading this book, I felt that Thettie although having all her family around her was a very lonely woman, moving back to Little Ridge brought back a lot of memories and she had a lot of guilt, she only showed her true self when she was with Lee. At the beginning of the book, I could not connect with Bryce and it was not until further into the story that I started to understand her purpose.  Lee and Thettie’s story was at times harrowing and I could not understand how Lee could suffer any more pain. I was intrigued with Aunt Sarey and wanted to know more about her and her strange dogs.

This is a very in-depth book and I found that it was a book that I had to take my time reading. It’s a story about love, betray and loss and is most definitely not your normal ghost story. The detailed writing especially the scenes on the lake added mystery to the book and you do wonder what it under the lake.  Whilst I do not judge a book by its cover, this is beautifully drawn and I feel that the cover captures Thettie sadness. A good story and a book that I will re-read as I am sure I will find something that I had missed.

 

The Rage of Cthulhu by Gary Fry

March 23, 2017 - 7:13 pm No Comments

The Rage of Cthulhu by Gary Fry

Published by Horrific Tales Publishing on 23rd March 2017

98 pages

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

After being medically retired George and his wife decide to spend some of what time he has left travelling round the world. Starting off in the picturesque town of Whitby, George stumbles across a derelict foghorn station and whilst he investigates the damage to the building gets embroiled into a mystery of an ancient being which will follow him around the world.

Not having read HP Lovecraft’s The Call of Cthulhu, I had no idea what this creature was or the history behind it, but after reading this story, I am curious to find out more. From the start of this story you are drawn into a secret that has not been talked about in 50 years, from listening to the two old men’s tales or reading an ancient Norwegian manuscript, you are taken on a journey around the world only stopping when George gets to his final destination. Whether it was in George’s dreams, visiting different places and seeing new cultures all this added to the mystery of the Cthulhu. The use of George’s illness makes you doubt yourself whilst you are reading it, as I kept wavering between thinking it was all in his head and thinking that he was chasing the monster down. Even finishing this book did not solve my dilemma. I had sympathy for Christine, George’s wife as I felt she was struggling between letting him investigate the mystery and believing him and worrying about his illness.

As it is a novella it is a quick read and it is a book you can finish in one sitting. The suspense builds up slowly and I had to keep reading to find out what happened. Whilst reading it I was expecting something dramatic to happen, but when it did, the descriptive way the author wrote those scenes I was imagining being with George and watching him face his demon.

A well written tale of an ancient monster, this will have you gripped to the end a good horror read.

Flying Away (The Flykeeper Chronicles Book1) by Caroline Gill

March 16, 2017 - 9:21 pm No Comments

Flying Away (The Flykeeper Chronicles Book1) by Caroline Gill

Published 12th January 2016

204 pages

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

After losing her parents Iolani moved in with her cousins and her grandparents. From the outside, they were your typical family but Eleanor and Iolani were special. Eleanor was a happy child but she glowed until one terrifying night at the lake, Iolani with the help of her buzzing friends tried to save her but Eleanor lost her sparkle. Trying to make it right, Iolani stumbles across something far worse and knows that to help her cousin she need to fight against a force that is strong, bigger and more powerful than her.  With her horse and a comatose Eleanor, she treks through the country to find her only true friend, an old-school friend who she knows will help her.

At the beginning of this book I was so confused, I had not a clue what was going on, but this got me intrigued to read more. The author had a knack of telling a story, every bit that was confusing at the beginning was explained throughout, making this an addictive read. Iolani was very family orientated and knew what she had to do, even if it meant putting her own life in danger.  The use of flies as the magical beings to help Iolani was unique and I loved the way she got the flies to work with her, protect or even save her. With near death experiences, kidnapping, and an epic journey across the countryside and desert made this action packed and a fast read. The back story of the loss of her parents was moving and you could feel Iolani’s grief and pain, but I think this made her a stronger girl and her being 15 made it more exciting especially when she came across someone bigger and stronger than her.

Book 2 and 3 are already out and I hope I get to find out more about Iolani’s gift and what has happened to Mr Chong and the green lanterns.

I never judge a book by its cover, however I think this cover is gorgeous and shows just how talented the author is, as she designed this herself. If you want a fantasy book with a difference then read this, you will not be disappointed.

Shattered Time Anthology by J. L. Clayton, Carissa Ann Lynch, Niki Livingston, Regina O’Connell, Ashlee Shades, Bradon Nave, Jeremy Simons, Joe Pranaitis, Genevieve Moultrie, T. Guthrie, D. A. Roach, Grace Charles.

March 13, 2017 - 12:52 am No Comments

Shattered Time Anthology by J. L. Clayton, Carissa Ann Lynch, Niki Livingston, Regina O’Connell, Ashlee Shades, Bradon Nave, Jeremy Simons, Joe Pranaitis, Genevieve MoultrieT. GuthrieD. A. Roach, Grace Charles.

Published 13th March 2017

475 pages

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

I love reading anthologies as a way to find new authors, and although I have read quite a few of these authors there were a couple I did not recognise.

For this review, I will write about each story

Lines of Time and desire by JL Clayton: Londyn and Scott becomes friends, when Scott sends a text to the wrong person, over time their friendship becomes complicated. The way JL Clayton writes you can imagine the smaller details in the story, the giddy school girl smile when Londyn receives the texts, the desperation to meet. JL Clayton has got the knack when it comes to short stories and this was no different. Keeping the story interesting right to the end and still adding a gasp moment. Think a modern-day Lake house.

Homecoming by Carissa Ann Lynch: Astrid is in mourning, her life completely changed when her younger brother died, but with the help of an eccentric old lady, can she heal her family’s heartbreak. Whilst reading this story I felt so sorry for Astrid and her dad and could not imagine losing a child. Using the good old faithful old lady/ witch just added to this story because it was not until the end that you knew what her purpose was. The ending was an added shock as I had not got a clue how her brother died and what was the cause. A great story and I would love to read more stories about Alexandra.

A Web Through Time by Niki Livingstone: The first story with a sci-fi element. The year is 2025 Alex’s life is in danger and she does not know who to trust, can her going into the future save her life and the lives of others. Full of action and drama this had me turning the pages to see if Alex survives. Even though a future time, somethings like racism and segregation never change. As a short story this is a great introduction to Alex and I was left me wanting to read more of her story.

Willow and The Forbidden Portal by Regina O’Connell: Willow is an herbalist, with the help of her herbs she spends her time trying to save people’s lives. However, one day it all goes wrong and she is running for her life, after being branded a witch. The story flows smoothly and due to the descriptive writing, you can imagine following Willow on her journey. A magical romance that will make you look at ancient trees differently.

Cassandra’s Choice by Ashlee Shades: Cassandra was a strong-willed woman who met her match when she woke up in the 19th century. An historical romance, I enjoyed this story very much as I liked the mixture of attitudes between the centuries. The Duke was your typical 19th century gent who although had an attitude, still knew where his manners were. Hopefully Cassandra got her HEA

The Secrets Crows Keep by Bradon Nave: Mildred was haunted by secrets and it was not until a visitor came, that she had to come to terms with what she did. Throughout this story, my mind was trying to work out, how she travelled in time and why did she have a hatred for her husband. Whilst reading this story I found Mildred to be one dangerous lady. I love the spin with Time travel and explanation of Mildred and the visitor’s connection. Although if you went into the Secrets Crow keep, you would get quite a shock.

Bridging the Gap by Jeremy Simons: Not happy with his life, all Garrett wanted to do was to kill himself by jumping off a bridge, but when he finds a portal that could help change is future, he gets more than he bargains for. This was one of my favourite stories and whilst reading it I found Garret to be a self-indulgent petty person and he should have been grateful to have Terry as a friend. This story use the theme that there are consequences when you use time travel to change your past. A great ending which tied up this story perfectly.

Time’s Launch by Joe Pranaitis: Another Sci-fi theme. Captain Dyson was commanding the 1st ship with Time travel technology and on its maiden voyage, it all goes terribly wrong. This story had a Star-Trek feel to it, from the ship’s technology to the captain who is curious to investigate what is going on. I liked the idea that he found a source of information that would explain what went on with the ship and that the ending left it open for the reader to imagine what happened next, or is there more to this story.

The Salesman by DA Roach: Melanie had an accident and since that day she cannot forgive herself. After a chance meeting with a salesman can she move on with her life. The way the author told Melaine’s story had you willing the purchase to work. With every change to Melanie’s life explained, the twist at the end was a total surprise. A moving story, that you won’t want to finish.

One Cockroach left by Genevieve Moultrie: Ratsor, an alien botanist, was filming another species but after a nasty accident she stumbled on something that changed her whole attitude on life. Ratsor was a likeable character who due to her job loved to explore and valued life. The description of her land was beautifully written and you could imagine all the vibrant colours of the creatures that she saw. Yet another story that had a surprise ending but I could only imagine what happened after.

Time by Grace Charles: To aid the discussion between Space, Creation and Time the love story between Vida and Mort was used. This was a well written story, with love at first sight, a number of twist and an ending where you can imagine what happened next, this kept me turning the pages. The relationship between Vida and Mort was genuine and although complete opposites made a really great couple. A new author to me

Whispers of Forever by T Guthrie: Layla was summoned to her Great Aunt’s Victorian mansion, suffering with Déjà vu, can her visions and her fascination with the man of her dreams, help her solve the mystery. You are drawn into this story from the moment that you start to read, an old mansion, the creepy butler and the tragic deaths, having you wondering what Layla has let herself in for. The visions that Layla has help explain the story and the author has a way of keeping the secret till right at the end. Even with clues scattered throughout the story. I still did not guess, what/who had caused the tragedy. I am looking forward to reading more from this author

With a mixture of genres, it just goes to show that not all time travel is Sci-fi. This anthology should please the majority of genre lovers and if like me, you love finding new authors then this anthology is for you.