The Scent of Almonds and Other Stories by Camilla Läckberg, Tiina Nunnally

ScentOfAlmondsRating: 5*****

Published: 2015 by HarperCollins

I absolutely loved this book! Some of these short stories involved the characters from her detective novels and it did come handy having read all of them, although I think, it is possible to start with this one and later read the rest of her thrillers.

A Scent of Almonds and Other Stories are a collection of some very short but beautiful crime fiction. Each of them represents situations of people and their way of thinking. These stories include topics: rage, disrespect, revenge, disappointment, love, survival, self-loving and family relationships. It is interesting how these topics can be interpreted in crime stories and it’s quite fun and sad!

I chose to start to read the stories from the back, starting with the very short one and leaving the “Scent of Almonds” as the very last. I found the book format extremely helpful when taking on journey as it was narrow and nearly half the size A5. There are less than 200 pages, excellent when taking public transport, but for longer journeys, you know yourself, you will need something extra.

A Perilous Undertaking (Veronica Speedwell #2) by Deanna Raybourn

APerilousUndertakingRating: 5*****

Published:  2017 by Titan Books Ltd


Synopsis from Goodreads:

“London, 1887.” Victorian adventuress and butterfly hunter Veronica Speedwell receives an invitation to visit the Curiosity Club, a ladies-only establishment for daring and intrepid women. There she meets the mysterious Lady Sundridge, who begs her to take on an impossible task saving society art patron Miles Ramsforth from execution. Accused of the brutal murder of his artist mistress Artemisia, Ramsforth will face the hangman s noose in a week s time if Veronica cannot find the real killer. 
But Lady Sundridge is not all that she seems, and unmasking her true identity is only the first of the many secrets Veronica must uncover. Together with her natural historian colleague Stoker, Veronica races against time to find the true murderer a ruthless villain who not only took Artemisia s life in cold blood but is happy to see Ramsforth hang for the crime. From a Bohemian artists colony to a royal palace to a subterranean grotto with a decadent history, the investigation proves to be a very perilous undertaking indeed….”


This is my one of recent favorite series of this year, I can’t wait to read the next book! I am surprised of not seeing this book more in book reviews as the writer’s writing style is so unique. The plot has nothing so creepy about the death they are given to examine, but the atmosphere, the characters, few of “delicate” topics not turn into vulgarity or cheapness, instead we have these 2 amazing characters who are although, complete opposites but their teamwork and friendship turn the reader, me to love the book!

The historical fiction plays conspiracy about royals of England and Veronica’s connection to the royal family. Although given a task to investigate the murdering, Veronica and Stoker are facing threats, a point where they think they are loosing and their friendship face sexual tence from both of them.

I enjoyed how slowly, but it did not feel slow at all, they both were going through points for each of the suspects, how story made me consider conspiracies and fail, hahaha! How the book has kept the humor and wicked tongues from the first book The Curious Beginning which I read on July. Although, the plot takes the investigation of high-class bohemian society and their underground, secret activities, Veronica’s and Stocker’s hobby details still takes place.

Veronica grows, matures over the book and she changes Stoker a little bit more, well, they both influence each other.

All In (Changing Hearts #2) by Yesenia Vargas

AllInRating: 3***

Published: 2015 by Yesenia Vargas

I received a free copy for an honest review, thank you!

I will say the book cover does not suit the story at all! It should have been completely different as the emphasis on the book is not just a romance book!

I don’t play basketball these days and the last time was in high school more than 12 years ago, although it was one of my disliked sport games at the class, I quite enjoy watching the game. Thus, I was not very judgmental for either right or wrong picture, but I absolutely enjoyed. There is a lot about basketball, main character, Jimmy is team lead and loves playing. He lives for his basketball and enjoys his life, he aims high and is asked to work hard on the game and his skills. His best friend is in his team, and they have been friends as long as he can remember. As a regular teenager, he has a solid girlfriend and although he cares for her a lot and has asked her to move in with him after the high school is over and his life seems sort of fine, if only his sister would be more cooperative to invest in the sibling-family relationship.

Life takes it turn and Jimmy finds in the middle of stress, although everyone has always though he has stress-free life with having perfect family model, and clear career goals. This is about to change and he realizes he has pushed away almost everyone whom he values a lot – his girlfriend and best friend Ryan…As at the times he has been focusing only on himself rather than see what’s going on and think ahead: “1+1”. Jimmy is about to grow as a teenager and fight for what he loves and treasures.

The story was more or less realistic, I didn’t like his girlfriend, but maybe because ‘Jimmy’ did not focus much on scenes where her personality would be exposed more in-depth.

I enjoyed that this book was written from a boys perspective, I am so used to read quick romance fiction always from female perspective that this took a while to get used to that the one who speaks and thinks is a boy. But I liked, it featured a male’s point of view, it avoid any drama, where I could easily picture if it was written that the main character is a girl.

I have not read the #1 book of the series and it was not an issue, understanding this sequel book.

Fire in Frost (Crystal Frost #1) by Alicia Rades

FireInFrostRating: 2**

Published:  2015 by Crystallite Publishing

The book has absolutely amazing cover!

The very start of the story so promising and interesting and I was so excited and then it just dies, without being developed (it most probably will in the next books, I suppose), but it took a turn on childish manner. I am sorry to write this but I guess, I was not expecting the turn into school drama, remember, there used to be novels Sabrina, the witch? Well, this is something very similar. The story actually deals with heavy topics such as mental and physical abuse, also evaluating friendships with school classmates and mum-daughter friendship.

Crystal is a student and still worries because her body is flat and she does not have her period, she is like super late one, that is about to change and add she is physic. She learns she has abilities to foresee future and see dead people, and she finds out her mum is one as well, but has always hidden the fact…For Crystal that gives plenty of explanations why she has always had her imaginary friend who most likely has been a little dead girl whom she used to play. Crystal lives in a small town where everyone knows everyone and soon her physic powers are discovered by parties she never intend to tell…

I gave two stars, because I lost trust in the story, that it could happen, that was my main issue, there were other’s – involving Nate’s, Olivia’s and Crystals behavior. The story has very high drama, and I had an issue with dialog. If you have read the book, please write what did you think of it and maybe you found it in complete different light?

Hired Bride (Beaufort Brides #1) by Noelle Adams

HiredBrideRating: 3***

Published: 2015, e-book available via Amazon

Hired Bride is about sham marriage going happy. I am absolutely against marriage forms like these, but closing eyes to that, the story was very interesting and funny at the same, even predictable but I kept on reading! Enjoyable and fast contemporary read.

Main character Deanna is the eldest of her sisters and all they are living together with her granny. Her main hobby is beads, she often creates various items and places them for sale. She is the one who often closes eyes and follows these old-fashioned outings to meet new people/ potential partners, idea from her granny that she must attend. That’s says Deanna has patience, but everyone else think she is not confident and lets grandma push every other direction she wants. She did go to these events, because it is way more easier than hear her grandma sulking forever if she did not went to the event. Ever had someone you know who does sulking? Well, you know how Deanna chooses these instead of not going. Almost everyone who is attending the party already knows that she is there because of her grandma and her ambitious plan of getting granddaughter marry rich man. Quite awful, is it not?

Then a story takes a spin and she is about to get married because it is a good deal and would help them to fix the house, it’s a great deal for opposite party – Mitchell – to get a contract of buying a particular restaurant.

This story reveals depth about each of the characters, saying not everything and everyone is as they seem in public. It also includes falling in love, feeling passion and thankfully it was written quite well!

August TBR & Library Book Haul

Hello Everyone!

I am about to present my August massive To-Be-Read book list. I am beaming happy at the moment, finally picked up the last order from library, which means am able to take photo of the paperbacks I plan to read. Plus, listening to this song that has 3 different versions  and I love it ( since yesterday ^^ and it influenced my return for listening to Korean bang BIG BANG after a year or so. I used to listen to Korean music a lot in the past, but well, this is my current favorite by The Lowkies and Moon Hyuna-> current favorite song

Last week I got most of them and then on Monday this week additional ones and today the last ones. There are still few more, but I still have to wait for them to be available, for some I am the no. one in the line for others I am number eight!

Honestly, I have no idea how I am going to read these all plus e-books from Kindle and yesterday in some madness, let’s call it this way, I request some more ARC’s. My goal this year in general is to, for Kindle, books in the past few months is to go through all of them, and reduce the books there.

wp-image-2039730763I have already read some of these and currently reading. I must return by Monday couple of books and I can say, the past Bank Holiday was absolutely brilliant, as we did not travel for any small day-trip in the area region. I think I like all the Bank Holidays through the year better than those for Christmas, because last Christmas I felt so huge pressure on to actually spend the festive days out there, in the stores buy and buy or go out on 26th of Dec but these Bank Holidays there are no any pressure and honestly, lovely warm 😀 But then again, this is August, the last month of summer and the only chance I can actually read a book outdoors in the park, sitting in grass and the ground is dry, which is so rare here. Fingers crossed I will make through these paperbacks:

  1. The Burning #1 by Jane Casey (Was given arc of her last book at the time and thus, now I want to read the series in the right order.);
  2. Red Sister by Mark Lawrence (I haven’t read anything by the author myself, but my husband has, so I want to start with this one…)
  3. Bellman Black by Diane Setterfield (Years back I read her other novel The Thirteenth Tale, which is still my favorite.);
  4. The Wild Air by Rebecca Mascull;
  5. The Hundred lies of Lizzie Lovett by  Chelsea Sedoti;
  6. The Winner’s Curse #1 by  Marie Rutkoski (Finally decide to give a try to the series!);
  7. Ink #1 by Amanda Sun;
  8. A Perilous Undertaking #2 by Deanna Raybourn;
  9. The Scent of Almonds and other stories by Camilla Lackberg;

The e-books via Kindle + eReader I plan to read and already have on August, these all are pretty short, approx. 2-3h quick read ( romance and fantasy):

  1. 36 Questions That Changed My Mind About You by Viki Grant (arc);
  2. Fire in Frost #1 by Alicia Rades;
  3. Hired Bride by Noelle Adams;
  4. The Trouble with flying by Rochelle Morgan;
  5. All In by Yesenia Vargas (arc, have not yet read);
  6. Soulmate #1 by Kellie McAllen;
  7. Pieces #1 by Rachel Medhurst;
  8. Runes #1 by Ednah Walters;
  9. Pyramids and Promises #2 by Kimberly Loth;
  10. When in Rome Loose Control by Lena Mae Hill (arc, still have not read);

The lists are pretty insane, taking in account it is  10/08 today! Well, there’s always option to extend my library loan and read some of the books from both lists next month 😀 I might change few, but setting TBR post kind of makes me more likely to stick with the list!

Have you read any of these books? What was your opinion and would you want to read any? Until my month wrap up, see you all on my updates and book review posts! Tomorrow is Friday! Hope you are in a position of having free weekends, if not, maybe today is your off day?

 

July Book Wrap Up

Hello Readers on Saturday!

It’s the first week of August and I shall write the conclusion of the books I read in July. I am quite happy with my July read statistics, read 15 books, including Arc’s  for children story books, YA romance and my coloring books- which yes, I think I could downsize the amount of read book pages as these will count on my Goodreads account statistics 🙂 yipii! These are all the books I read:

BooksReadInJuly2017

  • The Children Arc’s:
  1. Engineered! (Release in September, but I am publishing my review in August

4. Birthdays Around the World ( Release in September and I am publishing my review together with Engineered!);

  • YA Arc:

6. Unspoken Rules by Lora Inak (Release in September, together with my review).


2. Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan , Maureen Johnson , Robin Wasserman;

3. Ascendant (Ascendant Trilogy #1) by Rebecca Taylor;

5. Liana’s Dance by Rosanne Hawke;

7. Save the Date by Heather C. Myers; This is romance genre, but I did not enjoy it at all, well, that’s just me, maybe you will like it. There are many 4 and 5 * ratings!

8. Fantastyczne Konstrukcje by Steve McDonald;

9. I Found You by Lisa Jewell;  This is Lisa Jewell – promising fiction, crime, this was another high hopes because of the writer’s name and what it might stand for – I didn’t like the language style so much, characters were flat. But then again, others have given high rated reviews.

10. Secret Places: Adventures in Ink and Imagination by NOT A BOOK;

11. Indonesian Paradise wonderful Indonesia and coloring book by Fahmi Fauzi (Illustrator), Anang Musa (Illustrator), Luthfi Hinelo (Illustrator);

12. The Italian Girl by Lucinda Riley;

13. The Last Train Home by Megan Nugen Isbell;

14. A Curious Beginning (Veronica Speedwell #1) by Deanna Raybourn;

15. The Angel Tree by Lucinda Riley;


So, during July I read, excluding the color books, I read only 5 books from library! I though there are more, really surprised that only 5. But I have been ordering quite many for my August read. 3 from my Kindle – those books have been there for way too long and my aim in general this year is to get it read + the books given for review – and yes, there are some(more than some, let’s be honest) I still have not read. I received 4 Arc’s, one was published this month and the others are going to be on August and September.

Thank you for reading and how successful were you with your reading list?