The killing kind by jane Casey

Rating: 5 *****

Publishing Date: 27th May, 2021 by Harper Collins UK

Synopsis:

He tells you you’re special…
As a barrister, Ingrid Lewis is used to dealing with tricky clients, but no one has ever come close to John Webster. After Ingrid defended Webster against a stalking charge, he then turned on her – following her, ruining her relationship, even destroying her home.

He tells you he wants to protect you…
Now, Ingrid believes she has finally escaped his clutches. But when one of her colleagues is run down on a busy London road, Ingrid is sure she was the intended victim. And then Webster shows up at her door…

But can you believe him?
Webster claims Ingrid is in danger – and that only he can protect her. Stalker or saviour? Murderer or protector? The clock is ticking for Ingrid to decide. Because the killer is ready to strike again.

My Review:

Thanks a million HarperCollins UK for ARC reader’s copy of The Killing Kind in exchange for an honest review! Absolutely enjoyed, as always, Jane Casey writes a good one! This is a crime fiction standalone, quick read and hard to put down, twists and turns.

The plot is about a covert narcist personality to one of the previous Clients Ingrid has represented in the court ages ago, but even she won the case in his favour his attention switched towards her by destroying her own life and peace of wellbeing and now he seems to have returned, except this time it seems almost impossible to be proven and many disbelief her most of the time.

The impossible seems to be happening and sudden accidents take place around her and to people she knows. She is trying her best to figure it out what would be his next move to be unpleasantly surprised again. Ingrid’s gut feeling says more than she is able to know at the time without giving any further spoilers, as a reader I enjoyed the plot, as there are many narcissistic personalities around us and I believe the author has drawn very clear picture of that it is like to be around one as well the character experience a journey once she is personally affected and not just someone non-involved that may be drawn by the person with disorder to feel and express any feelings. Even through a tough experience main character changes along within the plot, and I think it is very well written.

Martian ghost Centaur by Mat Heagerty

Rating: 3***

Published: March 16th 2021 by Oni Press

Paperback, 192 pages

Thanks a million for ARC copy to Oni Press an opportunity to read the Martian Ghost Centaur!

I enjoyed the read, the illustrations were moving and story plot wasn’t too short. I could picture this as an animation movie and that is very important, this book is about family and friends and having a spirit of a goer, not being stopped by barriers one may face, it also shows a strong character which is showing dedication to those who are important. There’s humor and there’s individual characteristics. Do read and find out on your own!

The labyrinth of the SPIRITS BY CARLOS RUIZ ZAFON

Published: Published September 18th 2018 by W&N

Rating: 4****

I had bought this book as Christmas read 2 years ago but never got there, I had picked it up and started and always postponed not wanting to have finished the series. Then last year when the author passed away I was so sad that there really won’t be any further book for sure, even knowing with this last book the series really is finished. Then I finally picked up the reading, lacking time and being super busy – the start was always a bit broken and didn’t catch me that much and then, I don’t remember, just that I was reading 60, 100, 150 pages each time when I picked up the book again.
Slowly the previous book plot come back to my memory, as not having physical copies of the previous books with me right now, it was a bit of the challenge, but of course, you can find all the resources online as well.

This book is everything, it played with my emotions so much! I would love to give 5 stars, but at times I honestly felt disgusted by the book and reading the gross happenings, at the same it is as always great storytelling, language and read to love, hate and enjoy. The author has masterfully completed the series, without repetition of the previous books as often other authors do this mistake. Not giving out the spoiler – be ready for cliff endings and sudden changes and new truth reveals.

I love the cover, absolutely beautiful, white golden spine.

My decision to give 4 stars rely on some info not completely clear by the last pages, maybe it is a part of as a mystery genre…Some gross chapters and reflections surprised me out of blue but then again, this book is more related to The Angel’s Game which was one of the darkest ones along the series. The Labyrinth of the Spirits gives a different perspective to that and also a different perspective – a truth through the flip of the book itself – few hundred pages and you would not know until the end that you are reading something to understand the start way better, and that makes me love the book, how the transition withing it’s own plot can cause the emotions for the reader, the truth learnt via characters and simply a page turner!

The Body falls by andrea carter

Rating: 5*****

Published: April 2nd 2020 by Constable

Synopsis:

April in Florida and Ben O’Keeffe is enjoying balmy temperatures, working the last few days of a six-month stint with her old law firm. A week later she returns to Glendara, Inishowen where a charity cycle race is taking place. But it starts to rain, causing the cyclists to postpone the start of their event and stay overnight in the town. But the rain doesn’t stop; it increases to become relentless, torrential.

In the middle of the night Sergeant Tom Molloy is called out to Mamore Gap, where a body, dislodged from a high bank by the heavy rain, has fallen onto the vet’s jeep. It is identified as Bob Jameson ,a well known local charities boss, and the organizer of the cycling event. Stunned, the local GP confirms that the cause of death was a snakebite.

Terrible weather persists and soon bridges are down and roads are impassable. Glendara is completely cut off, with a killer at the heart of the community. Who is responsible for Bob Jameson’s death? One of the strangers in town or someone closer to home? It’s left to Molloy, with Ben’s assistance, to find out what is going on.

xxx

Another brilliantly written! It’s when you pick up a book in the bookstore and you just literally can’t wait to get home and start reading it, bringing you back to the favorite main characters and county Donegal, Ireland. Not many books are set there, but you will recognize the setting if you have been there for a visit when reading Inishoven Mysteries.

The death of the man takes place while many have come to participate in cycling charity event. Due to terrible rain fall weather conditions, the event is postponed for later. However you may think the road closures and bridge falls can only happen in the books, this one brings close to the reality at the time when Inishowen was cut off from all the roads due to massive flooding in August 2017.

The Body Falls is intriguing from cover to cover read, and sad once the book is over, as would have to wait for the next one to meet the characters again. They are so vivid live, that I feel I know them. Ben’s views in this book has matured and she is not running anymore, but faces whatever the situation may bring on. She is always curious and happy to be back to her home and people around, esp.Molloy whom in the last book she left off for States, without giving an answer to proposal. The thing is, even sh though she will think of it while working and living in States, but she finds herself being back – where she left…

When Ben arrives back and stays overnight at her parents place, it pass quite better than her regular quick, short visits…but then there’s a man in the house who is a stranger, but it seems he feels very cozy as if it was his house and the moment Ben meets him, he studies HER parents fridge as NOT being a guest there…who is he??

Finale by Stephanie Garber

Rating: 4****

Published: May 30th 2019 by Hodder & Stoughton

Synopsis:

Welcome, welcome to Caraval…all games must come to an end.

It’s been two months since the last Caraval concluded, two months since the Fates have been freed from an enchanted deck of cards, two months since Tella has seen Legend, and two months since Legend claimed the empire’s throne as his own. Now, Legend is preparing for his official coronation and Tella is determined to stop it. She believes her own mother, who still remains in an enchanted sleep, is the rightful heir to the throne.

Meanwhile, Scarlett has started a game of her own. She’s challenged Julian and her former fiancé, Count Nicolas d’Arcy, to a competition where the winner will receive her hand in marriage. Finaly, Scarlett feels as if she is in complete control over her life and future. She is unaware that her mother’s past has put her in the greatest danger of all.

Caraval is over, but perhaps the greatest game of all has begun―with lives, empires, and hearts all at stake. There are no spectators this time: only those who will win…and those who will lose everything.

It is one of the books that is so alive, that when i took nearly a year’s break before finishing the book, I did not need to re-read, I could pick up where I had left it and continue, everything so clear.

This book is similar to other two previous, where characters play with emotions, but they have also become more mature and when the emotional games of how you made me feel you get back same way have gone too far, they admit their wrongdoings. Those in-between may die, but who aren’t innocent either. Some plot revealings were interesting, a little bit of a surprise, some parts a bit boring and I did skip some pages.

Tella and Legend’s story takes the most of the focus here, of course, Scarlet’s fight and dare to save everyone too. Tella is facing lifetime choice to make without knowing how it may affect her and her loved ones, but she is sure the minute she agrees to the rules that are set…As overall, we have learned Donatella’s character is more spontaneous and enjoys to dare more, we aren’t surprised of what she chooses, the question is, is it permitted, and does it works and is it worth?

Scarlet seriously is facing situations which makes her think otherwise, she is really changing her mind 360 degrees, so watch out for a new, non- repetitive characteristics, at the same – she is acting as fiercely as she believes in loving those she cares, and when she sets her mind on something, almost nothing can stop her. Julian and Scarlet… they both are about to reach, that playing non-interested isn’t working, only does the harm…

The book is a slow reader, at the same it is beautiful and well written work, there’s a lot of description, and for a fast action to take place, that’s after 2/3 of the read. A lot of emotions are played and why not – it’s still the same old Caraval with it’s main persons.

The Gilded Cage (also known under title “The Golden Cage”) – Camilla Läckberg

TheGildedCage

Published: 2nd April, 2020, Harper Collins, UK

Rating: 5*****

Synopsis:

All that glitters…
People would kill to have Faye von Essen’s life. She lives in an ultra-swanky apartment in the most exclusive area of Stockholm, she has a gorgeous husband who gives her everything she’s ever wanted, and she has an adorable daughter who lights up her world. Faye’s life is perfect.
So how is it, then, that she now finds herself in a police station?
The truth is that Faye’s life is far from what it seems. The truth is that Faye isn’t even her real name. And now she’s been caught out. There’s no way she’s going to go down without a fight. The only question is – who will escape with their life?


My Review:

Thank you Harper Collins for providing me with ARC copy for an honest review!

Absolutely brilliant and well developed crime psychological fiction, involving a narcissist’s behavior in a very precise actions and twisted, but an interesting plot! I have read all the books Camilla has written and that have been translated in English.

The Guilded Cage is a separate, standalone book. I found the plot so well developed as at first I kinda disliked both of the main characters, and could say I find it hard to read when the plot has sexy, but at the same domestic violence through and through. I disliked Faye at first, even she’s going through all that due to her own action seem to reflect – what goes around comes around because of what she did in her early youth, I could feel sorry for her, but I just couldn’t, until the moment when the author has mastered the plot so – that my views switch and I am so proud of this main female character, that I want to salute for her femininity and strong will getting back to her feet when hit so hard under the belly.

Have your life path ever crossed with someone who has narcissist traits? Have you ever gave yourself to someone who didn’t value it or used it to reverse and hurt yourself? Faye has supported her boyfriend, then her husband whole time, starting from the time when they just dated to the point where she was mum and a wife – 24/7 at home. Her life does not seem to be perfect, nor her attitude at times, but what’s not known she’s constantly devalued, ghosted, gash-lighted and masterfully manipulated by her partner.

Jack on the other hand is very well known by his name only, having experienced rough childhood he has mastered to be admired by women, and in the society circle. Everyone wanting to be friends with him as of the benefits that comes along those…but little do they know his smartest ideas might not be his own… He is someone you don’t dare to mess, if so he will bring you down to destroy…

Unless there’s someone who’s not afraid of him anymore …

The Guilded Cage’s crimes of all sort…, takes the uncontrolled path for all the parties involved…, but you would also not only find betrayal, theatrical and fake people along the journey of self recovery, but also wonderful, down to earth, helpful and true life friends that the book is about, hard work of encouragement, the message that circulates in the book – to build a new life without a penny from the start and get back your own personality that one has crushed and tried to change. The payback may include exactly what was taken plus way more.

Hello Everyone! Ilonitas notes are back…

Hey! How’s everyone?

To all of you who followed me at the time and commented, reacted to my posts nearly a year ago – thank you 🙂

I took a year break of reading books, well, reading very, very few books, but not writing any reviews due to personal life changes. My mind bursted from the information I was learning and working on, as well, was placing focus on travelling a lot, always on the move, and other activities that was necessary at the time and let me grow my individuality.  In best scenario, I could have combined with contentiously reading and reviewing books, but I did not have words to say and create reviews for even the books I gave 5 stars. I am sorry.

But here I am and ready to pick up reading again and writing and have more time enjoying one of my favorite hobby. It does not mean I am stopping to do all what I picked up last year, a playing various sports, running weekly, having full time work and going to culture events, meeting with friends, but somehow I have built up to the point where I have the energy to write.

I am reshaping the Ilonitasnotes and only gonna write the book reviews, my focus will still be exploring new authors, from various countries, but also picking up different age groups more often, and by that I mean – middle grade and children picture books. I am not dropping my other hobbies, but I decide just to focus on one theme here. Will use the other platforms for quilting notes.

Thank you for reading, and I am looking forward to read your next reviews!

Book Love by Debbie Tung

booklove7Rating: 4****

Published: January 1st 2019 by Andrews McMeel Publishing


I received the e-arc for an honest review, thank you!

Book Love is a short version of you and me every day living through the situations via book person’s perspective, we surround our live around the books and books and so – the graphics are greyish black and white, the plot makes one laugh recognizing and relating, the same exact situation you have been through either in a bookstore or library – spotting the new arrival book section, spending all day reading and feeling great, and so many more. We have seen the quotation with book reader’s situations and this short book is something very similar – except these are original illustrations.

I enjoyed how each page tells one story and “problem” in a bookish person’s life. This is a funny and fast read.

Hidden Heartbreak by Emma Lee


hiddenheartbreak3Rating: 2**

Published: January 8th 2019 by Andrews McMeel Publishing


I received this e-arc for an honest review, thank you!

Have you been through a heartbreak? Dramatic or less dramatic.. how have you felt? How have you find the way through the emotions, any of kind? Hidden Heartbreak is a graphic novel, it has captured emotions one is going through a break-up, the illustrations are stylish and modern sketches, it is not depressive at all, it’s a good read and interesting, as graphics gives the visual impression what the author wants to create for the plot. It’s funny at times, it is also touching sides of having a different relationship – when a relationship can be toxic. The Hidden Heartbreak brings the reader through the whole relationship process, from its start till it’s over and the leftovers.

Here are some of the graphics:

hiddenheartbreak1

hiddenheartbreak2

Watersnakes by Tony Sandoval

watersnakescoverRating: 3***

Published: November 20th 2018 by Lion Forge Comics

Synopsis: Mila is a solitary teenager ready to put another boring summer vacation behind her until she meets Agnes, an adventurous girl who turns out to be a ghost. And not just a regular ghost, but one carrying the essence of an ancient fallen king and a mouth full of teeth that used to be his guardian warriors.


I received this e-Arc copy for an honest review, thank you!

This is an epic strange/ unique Gothic fantasy short story. The illustrations are brilliant, something I have never seen before, and with a pretty “normal” ones they become closer and closer to horror illustrations. The comic book is for adults, not for children, as I think one of the little one may have horror dreams.. plus same-sex graphic kissing scenes, but I have enclosed few photos of the nice looking illustrations.

The plot makes a reader return back to the very start and read again, it was interesting and at the same very dark, masterly hidden dark graphic novel. The plot involves ghosts, foxes, two similar age school girls and a brother. The story tells of an unfortunate happening when one has been eaten by a demonic figure and has overtaken the little girl. Her family suffers till then, and her parents has never gotten over the fact their daughter disappeared, which is normal… the climax of the story is to kill the evil through the battle… and face the outcome…

The Kill (Maeve Kerrigan #5) by Jane Casey

thekillReview: 4.5 ****

Published: June 5th 2014 by Ebury Press

Synopsis: When a police officer is found shot dead in his car, DC Maeve Kerrigan and DI Josh Derwent take on the investigation. But nothing about the case prepares them for what happens next: a second policeman dies . . . and then another . . .
The Metropolitan Police struggle to carry out their usual duties, but no one knows where or how this cop killer will strike again. While London disintegrates into lawlessness Maeve’s world starts to fall apart too. For if the police can’t keep themselves safe, how can they protect anyone else?


This is a very good and intense crime fiction. I enjoy J.Casey’s writing and both of the main character’s, their friendship/partnership as colleagues and they become used to each other’s sharp personalities.

The particular book five in the series, if in case you have not read any of the book in Maeve Kerrigan series, I highly suggest not to jump and read this one, but start with the very first one. I did read the very last book for Arc last to last year when I discovered the writer, and thus I have been slowly catching up from the very first book till now up to finishing the series as how far they have been written to. Each book releases a little more and more and I am so much looking for the next one #8 now. I read #5 & #6 in one weeks time – be ready to read all day!

The Kill brings the story to an exceptional situation the whole police is facing, there has been a shooting where many officers are shot dead, there are ongoing serial killings that take place and Maeve’s boyfriend is nearly killed at the scene. Police cannot track the next new possible assault to another police officer and there again Maeve face her attacker from previous book..so the story continues…, Maeve and Derwent – brilliant read, their collaboration, we also read more about Maeve’s personal life crisis and Rob’s attitude, which surprised me so much! No Spoilers here, J. Casey surprised me unexpectedly, of all the people, but Rob, the down to earth, patient guy Maeve is dating.. wow!

The plot takes reader’s to an area which is in social welfare eye and police often goes on rounds, so, they aren’t welcome in the area. Society who live there are with various backgrounds and to find a guilty side who stands behind the assault to police officers isn’t an easy job, esp, when nobody seems to be willing to share anything…

Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed

lovehateandothermattersReview: 5*****

Published: January 16th 2018 by Hot Key Books

Synopsis: Maya Aziz dreams about kissing boys and going to film school in New York, but miles away, an unknown danger looms. A terrorist attack in another city unleashes fear and hate in Maya’s small town, changing her life and disrupting her future.



I love the cover and absolutely enjoyed the story that captures perfect atmosphere of mixed cultures and young generation clashing with older one. It’s quite often found in families where parents have one expectations of their child’s supposed life’s direction and missing the point that the child has interests of their own or they are ready for the career choices, which, sadly parents don’t accept because in their eyes the profession isn’t highly paid or rated among the society…

This book also touch racism and hate issues from community, ones which often people face if they look mixed race, if they are more tanned or lighter than the majority of population, and it happens to Maya and her family. She is facing extreme hate, and face a situation which is beyond her or her family’s control… What I loved about the whole plot was that it surprissed me till the end of the book by unexpected turns!

Same happens in Love, Hate & Other Filters where Maya loves taking photos and video’s, where’s her parents would have absolute opposite views of what she will be studying and what is “a good choice” to study… and having an obedient Indian daughter close to them, finding a suitable marriage candidate… Do you sense a drama there? Yes, there’s a huge one and then there is a love story too and  the community… This is a contemporary Ya romance, which gives the moral of – go for what you believe in, don’t let yourself to be stopped, even if it means pursuing the career goals you desire, but not the rest of your family. Become strong through the heartache, drama and keep it calm, don’t let the racism hate get through your skin.

Hello 2019!

Hi, Reader!

Hello in New Year and I’m excited to type up a post here!  I’m sure you have somewhat idea what you want to read this year, what books you can’t wait to be released in sequence series and what surprises you might find in the upcoming months in book sales.

It’s been a while since I wrote the last post, since I reviewed a book and it was a while when I read one. 2018 marked few huge changes in my life spin, and without any announcement I disappeared from reviewing for months, precisely 4 months! That did a chunk bite off the reading goal for 2018 ^^ My statistics for 2018 is 33 books! The smallest number I have ever read!! But I am glad I could prioritize and focus on something that was very important in my career, although I missed reading a lot, the time flew and now I am – I am back into reading and have started the year quite promising. Have read 2 interesting books in crime genre, also ya and graphic novels, and hey, it’s only 8th January 😀 looking forward to write the reviews, I have missed reading and writing reviews so much! I plan to read at least 57 this year, hopefully close to 100, I am optimistic!

In December I went to Luxembourg for the very first time and spent there 2,5 days. I may had not the best weather to visit this small, yet the country that resides in the very heart of Europe and is a business hub, I enjoyed the trip a lot. Met one of my dear friends and visit 3 Chritmas markets that took the place in the city at the time. Luxembourg has everything, from beautiful architecture to great transportation system in the city. A post will follow as I am returning there again in January to discover it a little bit more.

myhometownnamedlove

Recently I discovered and I have read 1/2 of short stories “My Hometown Named Love” by Markus Ahonen, a Finnish writer, these are short love stories from a man’s perspective, the writing is smooth and brilliant storytelling with surprising ending! Review to come. Highly suggest already. Bough via Amazon. He writes crime fiction and there is another series that are currently translated into English/audio books.

a curseso dark&lonely

I have been excited to be among one of the ARC readers for “A Curse so Dark and Lonely” by Brigid Kemmerer, her book will be Published at the end of January and March – depending on the location where do you live. I like her writing and been happy to read her previous books! This one is one of my most anticipated releases in 2019!

During my Christmas shopping I bought 2 books: Robert Galbraith, #4 “Lethal White” and Carlos Ruiz Zafon #3 “The Labyrinth of the Spirits”. Whohow, two chunky reads. I am eying another book by Lucinda Riley, the last book in her Seven Sister’s series, as that’s the only book series I like written by her. I found the book in the library, so far my que is 124 ^^ let’s see how fast it will become available or maybe I will buy it…

This year as well as in the past years – I plan to read majority of hard copies from the library service, the ARC’s and the books I have bought from The Crime Fiction “Murder One”, which took place in Dublin, last October and the books that are on my Kindle for a very long time 🙂 Sounds pretty busy year ^^

Tell me what do you plan to read this month and year! Looking for suggestions and I am pretty open to discover something new! Let’s get back into reading people!

Ilona

SETO UTSUMI #1 by Kadzuya Konomoto

frontRating: 3***

Published: Akita Publishing Co.,Ltd, Kindle Edition

Synopsis: “I wish we could just spend all our high school days sittin’ and chattin’ by this river.” This seven chapter volume is a collection of the funky, off-the-wall, and sometimes cynical after-school conversations between Seto and Utsumi, two high-schoolers from the Kansai region of Japan.


I received the e-arc book for an honest review, thank you!

The Seto Utsumi has been made into TV series in Japan, that tells something about the plot. The graphic novel has its charm, representing pure boyish talk, friendship, when nothing particular special is going on, just random conversations and situations involving each others family and school problems, dreams to finally graduate and be someone…like many other students at the age.

 

I found to like the graphics, facial expressions were illustrated just as watching a movie in black and white. I enjoyed the scenes with sudden rain and background illustrations. The book, however, is not for everyone, especially, I think the audience in Europe and outside Japanese/Asian community have a different expectations from a general book and a graphic novel. Rating Seto Utsumi as manga/graphic novel set in Japan and knowing the culture it represents – I think it’s a nice read, very general episodes of “nothing special” going on in a teenage life, which not always are easy to represent. Very fast read. The book at the times felt repetitive, but nothing too much.

 

Just One Wish by Janette Rallison

JustOneWish

Rating: 2**

Published: July 21st 2014, Kindle Edition

Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Annika Truman will do anything to fulfill her little brother’s only wish before his frightening cancer surgery. The trouble is, he wants a certain superstar actor to pay him a visit. Annika has only a few days to drive to California and convince the celebrity to come home with her. On a seemingly impossible adventure that includes paparazzi, bows and arrows, and one enormous snake, Annika learns a few lessons about family, love, and having her own wishes granted.


Hello Everyone!

This is the first book I have read in September. How are you setting up the books to read for this month? I hope you have read more than me at the moment! Just One Wish was an easy and fast contemporary romance read within few hours. It felt touching religion a bit at the end of the book and faith in God if anyone has an issue with this, although it does not classify as a Christian book.

Main character Annika is feeling desperate to do something as her little brother is diagnosed with cancer and his only chance is to survive the surgery that will take place within week’s time. So far Annika is doing great and fulfills each and every wish of her little brother, even running to the toy store to get the latest edition of the Robin Hood toy her 6-year-old brother Jeremy is crazy about. Well, let me correct, the Robin Hood character is his idol from TV series…

One misfortune action leads to another one and another, and Annika get this idea to travel to California to meet this actor who her brother made a wish to see before his surgery, ask him to come with her to hospital and meet Jeremy…Sound crazy, right? Who would have time to do so, especially, when she doesn’t even have a clue how to and where to meet him. Her best friend accompany her for this journey. As Annika is 17, she still requires to let her parents know where she is..but of course, new lies are set to work, which does, as her parents are too busy with Jeremy’s upcoming surgery plus trusts their daughter. So Annika lies saying she will stay with her friend to make a school project and her friend says the same…and they both drive to meet this actor and make her wish work.

Annika is determined to win, achieve all the obstacles she could face and go beyond..
My rating is two starred because, I would have preferred not to read the “adventure” when she tries to get the attention of Steve Raleigh, the actor who is playing Robin’s role. Because it turned the plot less realistic, involved “hollywoodish” or any TV series that are pointless and stupid. If i take this 1/3 part of the book out, the rest is an interesting sweet teenage romance with handling the situation between families and encouraging the other person to value the family bounds.

Bright Smoke, Cold Fire (Bright Smoke, Cold Fire #1) by Rosamund Hodge

img_20180819_1240201388829778.jpgRating: 1*

Published: September 27th 2016 by Balzer + Bray

Synopsis: When the mysterious fog of the Ruining crept over the world, the living died and the dead rose. Only the walled city of Viyara was left untouched.
The heirs of the city’s most powerful—and warring—families, Mahyanai Romeo and Juliet Catresou share a love deeper than duty, honor, even life itself. But the magic laid on Juliet at birth compels her to punish the enemies of her clan—and Romeo has just killed her cousin Tybalt. Which means he must die.
Paris Catresou has always wanted to serve his family by guarding Juliet. But when his ward tries to escape her fate, magic goes terribly wrong—killing her and leaving Paris bound to Romeo. If he wants to discover the truth of what happened, Paris must delve deep into the city, ally with his worst enemy . . . and perhaps turn against his own clan.
Mahyanai Runajo just wants to protect her city—but she’s the only one who believes it’s in peril. In her desperate hunt for information, she accidentally pulls Juliet from the mouth of death—and finds herself bound to the bitter, angry girl. Runajo quickly discovers Juliet might be the one person who can help her recover the secret to saving Viyara.
Both pairs will find friendship where they least expect it. Both will find that Viyara holds more secrets and dangers than anyone ever expected. And outside the walls, death is waiting. . .


Hello Readers,

I love the cover, its gorgeous, and very promising synopsis.
The book is written covering two characters, Runajo and Paris, each of them in different time-lines and stories, only suspecting their paths will cross. The start of the book is promising, it builds up as the fantasy – action plot, there are secrets, high powerful leader system where only those who have served for many years and practiced training, obedience will be promoted further, except for family members.

Then those who has been acting on their own, are about to be punished and the mystery rise, there’s of course the plot of great betrayal of those who have been keeping the system alive, while in meantime, covering something more darker. And those who are desperate to get something changed, save the city and stop the deaths, deaths every day, dreams and hopes destroyed and not being able to take the action…

I have been “reading” this book for the past 3 months, and always stuck at some small number of pages, which sort of prevent me to read something else, as have been dragging on and on with Bright Smoke, Cold Fire. So I have finally read more than 100 pages and I had lost any interest I had, some actions and conversations didn’t make sense and I couldn’t align with Paris way of thinking. Sorry to say I DNFed the book.

The fact that this is Romeo and Juliet retelling – would not be my choice for reading, more as individual story, I would have preferred for those two characters to have different names instead, as I think saying Rome and Juliet retelling gives more weight to the plot than a fantasy book.

Legendary (Caraval #2) by Stephanie Garber

18-08-14-18-26-51-291_deco1354939538-e1534543750743.jpgRating: 5*****

Published:  May 31st 2018 by Hodder & Stoughton

Synopsis: A heart to protect. A debt to repay. A game to win.
After being swept up in the magical world of Caraval, Donatella Dragna has finally escaped her father and saved her sister Scarlett from a disastrous arranged marriage. The girls should be celebrating, but Tella isn’t yet free. She made a desperate bargain with a mysterious criminal, and what Tella owes him no one has ever been able to deliver: Caraval Master Legend’s true name.

The only chance of uncovering Legend’s identity is to win Caraval, so Tella throws herself into the legendary competition once more – and into the path of the murderous heir to the throne, a doomed love story, and a web of secrets . . . including her sister’s. Caraval has always demanded bravery, cunning, and sacrifice. But now the game is asking for more. If Tella can’t fulfill her bargain and deliver Legend’s name, she’ll lose everything she cares about – maybe even her life. But if she wins, Legend and Caraval will be destroyed forever.

Welcome, welcome to Caraval . . . the games have only just begun.


The cover is gorgeous, and represents the very finale of the book, grand fireworks on display..

This book! Oh, my! Complete 5 starred rating in one go! Without going much into paraphrasing what has been told on synopsis, this was amazing read, I absolutely loved the suspense, mystery about who the Legend will be, which new character will appear and how will it be handled as it start to become more and more complex. I have read the great reviews and still was skeptical to the series, as very often second book messes the first one, this is not the case. The plot developed, characters grow throughout the book, it handles the multiple climaxes excellent way, and is wrapped in wonderful, smooth language. The little pinch of romance included adds the charm.

I loved the focus on this book was for Donaltella and Dante, and i am happy the book was not only about Scarlett and Julian, although I did enjoyed their story in previous book Caraval. The Legendary is written from Tella’s point of view, we, readers get to know below surface, her sister Scarlet has never known about, and we had no idea what was going on book #1, which creates the urge to re-read the book again to understand with this extra knowledge now, why Tella’s actions were as they were in Caraval’s first play this year.

Tella is acting first and thinking later, often it has led her to troubles and now that’s exactly what happens again and again. She is someone who is not afraid to take a risk and jumps for it, hoping it will work out and she will find a way to tackle the problems, the aims and her dreams she have had forever and which ones have kept her going. Don’t we can refer to this? Sometimes we just jump for a thought it may work and whatever happens we could deal with any consequences…

Tella doesn’t believe in love, but still she dreams of having this one for her she has been fantasising about. She has kissed many boys and knows she can’t trust them or they are willing to promise million things for kisses and love makes people stupid. Still she wonders how it is to kiss when you could die for that one kiss…is that even possible? Can a kiss cause such emotions? Donatella believes being in love makes person stupid and sooner or later it will die. She fights her own demons and game she has been playing in order to pay debts of requests she has made, which has led her here where she is now… some are deadly and some are adventurous. I loved her wicked tongue and that we can read how she is weighting her thoughts for which decision to take. We learn more about her mother and how her disappearance seems too mysterious and it also opens more questions for the next finale book!

In Legendary we have a new character Jack, he is well-known for his skills by killing each of his finances, everyone is scared by him and he also has a wicked humor as much as Tella and Dante has. It’s fun to read and yes, as you may have read Caraval or have heard, the both books are united by one common thing – nothing is as it seems – its way crazier and there’s always possibility of betrayal when you can’t rely on anything, unless you hold a strong believe and hope.

The Caraval series have become one of my new favorites. Which means I will be trying to get those for my bookshelf. Thank you for reading!

Treacherous Strand (Inishowen Mysteries #2) by Andrea Carter

All-focusRating: 5*****

Published: 2017 by Thorpe, Hardcover, Charnwood Edition, Large Print, 347 pages

Synopsis: 

A woman’s body washes up on a remote beach on the Inishowen peninsula. Partially-clothed, with a strange tattoo on her thigh, she is identified as Marguerite Etienne, a French woman who has been living in the area.

Solicitor Benedicta ‘Ben’ O’Keeffe is consumed by guilt; Marguerite was her client, and for the second time in her life Ben has failed someone who needed her, with tragic consequences. So when local Sergeant Tom Molloy dismisses Marguerite’s death as the suicide of a disturbed and lonely woman, Ben cannot let it lie.

Ben uncovers Marguerite’s strange past as a member of a French doomsday cult, which she escaped twenty years previously but not without leaving her baby daughter behind. Disturbed by what appears to be chilling local indifference to Marguerite’s death, Ben pieces together the last few weeks of the French woman’s life in Inishowen. What she discovers causes her to question the fragile nature of her own position in the area, and she finds herself crossing boundaries both personal and professional to unearth local secrets long-buried.


I picked up this book out of curiosity as the setting is taking place in County Donegal, Ireland and I have not read anything so far from there. The book I found via library was large print edition. I haven’t read the first part of the series yet, but now I am looking forward. The Treacherous Strand has been published on 2017 and I am surprised it has only 21 reviews and 114 ratings on Goodreads! Why people aren’t reading this book, haven’t picked it? It’s an interesting detective and mostly have got 4 starred reviews. The overall read was interesting as it gave small Irish culture descriptions here and there, it is a fast read and I postponed everything else to later that day ^^

Treacherous Strand is about a French woman death at the coast of Inishowen, in Norh West county of Ireland. In plot the action mostly takes place in even smaller village Malin, and occasionally taking trips to Letterkenny, a regional centre. The main character, Ben, is a local solicitor and French lady was her client, yet to become one from previous night’s visit to suddenly halt a will. But as the client was late and it was past the working hours Ben sort of didn’t gave much effort and postponed it to later… How often have we had similar situations where we find rushing and not paying attention to something and later finding ourselves a little bit guilty? If you can relate to this, you know why Ben is feeling guilty and unsettled getting to know who’s died…and what’s more unsettling seems the fact that everyone, including, Garda (police) believes there’s nothing more than the suicide. However, Ben feels she wants to know more and is genuinely curious as to what happened and who  Marguerite was, what villagers thought of her and did she had any friends… Ben remembers she has once attended a yoga class but that’s it, nothing more.

The plot goes into depth of small village life, drawing out “lifestyle” and “who knows whom” setting, creating Marguerite’s personality and personal life from fragments and complex the whole picture of her. Her past as being a member of religious cult only stress the mystery and a reader gets to know more about it as well as those who have escaped, often face traumatized experience to life and adapt to change. The finale and finding who did the murder was unexpected, as well as rushed a little bit.

Not only we learn more about the victim and her family, but also about Ben and she has a strong, leading persoanlity who aches to be loved and be into a relationship, so there is a pinch of romance attached to the plot. I am looking forward to read the first and the third book in the series.

The Trouble with Falling (The Trouble Series #4) by Rochelle Morgan

theTroubleWithFallingRating: 3***

Published: October 18th 2016

Synopsis: After the heart-shattering ending of her first serious relationship, eighteen-year-old Sophie has sworn off love. Now that school is behind her, she plans to travel the world and form as few attachments as possible. The only exception: Lex, the artist on the other end of the Internet who chats to her almost every day. A guy she can never lose–since she doesn’t actually have him to begin with.

Sophie’s plan can start as soon as she’s faked her way through her sister’s wedding. Pretending to be happy and excited for the next week or two should be easy, right? But that was before Caleb walked onto the scene … Best man to Sophie’s almost-brother-in-law, Caleb is infuriating friendly and determined to get a real smile out of Sophie. Forced together through dance classes and wedding-related disasters, Sophie is determined not to like him. And terrified when she ends up failing.

Then Lex suggests he and Sophie should meet, and all Sophie’s careful plans for the future begin to unravel. Now the girl who was never meant to fall for anyone must figure out what to do with the two guys tugging at her heart.


The Trouble with Falling is a very sweet/teenage love story, following The Trouble series. I have read and reviewed the first book The Trouble with Flying (The Trouble Series #1) by Rochelle Morgan, Rachel Morgan , but missing 2nd and 3rd doesn’t destroy the read as each of the books are dedicated to other characters

Having said it’s a sweet contemporary teenage read, by having read 1/3 of the book the outcome who will fall for whom is pretty predictable. Witty humor and falling in love.

The main character Sophie have had a bad love experience and she is absolutely not into having a relationship now, when school is over. Besides she has a crush on her best online buddy Lex, being friends with him for over 2 years they are chatting now. But she is ‘thrown’ in the middle of wedding preparation of her eldest sister at the time when she is absolutely annoyed by “LOVE” topic in the household, plus their family home is having a wedding guest around. Celeb is the guest they are having over, he is a little older than Sophie and from the very start she has decided not to like him, as they have met before in an art shop and the mutual likeness failed.

Celeb, once introduced to Sophie is acting funny and tries to tease her as he sees she doesn’t like him. His mission is to make her smile, but he fails every now and then.

What was conflicting – the very start, she was having a chat with her sister, but it felt as she’s having a conversation with a friend, and had no idea who each of the people in her house is.
Otherwise I enjoyed Celeb’s and Sophie’s developing romance, funny scenes and dialogues, family issues. I enjoyed her sister lecturing Sophie about ruining everyone’s mood with her spiky childish “off love” remarks. This action was so necessary for the main character to achieve a personal growth.

I understand growing up isn’t easy for everyone and most of us has gone through it at some stages of our lives. We all can have a bad day and we all can ignore best friends once we get swiped by sparkles of romance and in Sophie’s case, she has to choose between two guys…but sometimes she was acting as a drama queen and everyone else had to just get going with it.

Having said that, and returning to my first paragraph, I will still say, it was a nice, interesting read.

Caraval (Caraval #1) by Stephanie Garber

img_20180628_174359276669389.jpgRating: 4****

Published: January 31st 2017 by Flatiron Books

Synopsis: Scarlett Dragna has never left the tiny island where she and her sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval—the faraway, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show—are over.
But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt-of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.
Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. Nevertheless she becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic. And whether Caraval is real or not, Scarlett must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over or a dangerous domino effect of consequences will be set off, and her beloved sister will disappear forever.


 I read Caraval in June and although nearly another month has passed, here I am writing my thoughts about the book. Caraval is really a one I will suggest for you to read, if you have been looking to read and yet, haven’t The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern , because this one is sooo much better. This one creates the magic for you in front of you, even you have heard the warning it is all illusion and not read, still you get the sense of it and fall for everything that’s written. Opinions may differ and some of you have loved The Nigh Circus,  where’s I didn’t and I find it as one of the over-hyped books everyone is planning to read if they haven’t.

Caraval is trilogy’s first book, the writing is well written and I didn’t feel turning pages, until I was finished with reading, I basically lived in the story line. Caraval is about Scarlet and her sister Donatella, both of whom are longing for magic and the stories, where Caraval and Legend creates one, while in reality they both live together with despotic and cruel father who has never shown any pinch of love towards them both. Their mother abandons them without saying goodbye, so Legend and daydreaming becomes something impossible, yet…wished for. Scarlet and her sister Tella has never left the island where the live, they have no idea how other places and kingdoms look.

Scarlet is the elder, responsible sister and Tella is the one who takes risks…they are about to find their true colours at the end of the book, but they are much more than they think they are, and what they are capable for.  Scarlet longs for security and get away from her father by marrying someone her father has chosen for her and relying on his good judgement… Tella is supposed to be naive, but is she?

When book takes them to Caraval, there’s a beautiful and yet unpredictable romance. As the warning says – nothing is serious, I was questioning most of the plot and having conspiracy theories, yet, it surprised me, some notion I could sense, the other were surprise. But I loved the atmosphere and someone surrealism there. The ending seemed rushed and a lot of hits given to what will happen in the next book #Legendary. Which I am hoping to read in August.

A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares by Krystal Sutherland

ASemiDifinitiveListRating: 3***

Published: September 5th 2017 by Hot Key Books

Synopsis: Ever since Esther Solar’s grandfather was cursed by Death, everyone in her family has been doomed to suffer one great fear in their lifetime. Esther’s father is agoraphobic and hasn’t left the basement in six years, her twin brother can t be in the dark without a light on, and her mother is terrified of bad luck.
Esther doesn’t know what her great fear is yet (nor does she want to), a feat achieved by avoiding pretty much everything. Elevators, small spaces, and crowds are all off-limits. So are haircuts, spiders, dolls, mirrors and three dozen other phobias she keeps a record of in her semi-definitive list of worst nightmares. 
Then Esther is pickpocketed by Jonah Smallwood, an old elementary school classmate. Along with her phone, money and a fruit roll-up she d been saving, Jonah also steals her list of fears. Despite the theft, Esther and Jonah become friends, and he sets a challenge for them: in an effort to break the curse that has crippled her family, they will meet every Sunday of senior year to work their way through the list, facing one terrifying fear at a time, including one that Esther hadn’t counted on: love.


I read the book during the June’s last week.

This is author’s second book, I loved the debut novel Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland  and this was a clear pick-up for me. I gave three stars, not because I think it has no potential, it has, it’s a fast read  – I read in about an hour’s time, but because at times i wanted to skip the pages, and wasn’t interested in the psychologycal topics, anxiety and others, but at the same it’s interesting, gives unexpected turns and reveal pain, issues. I think writer has handles well the aspects of the reality and Esther’s own world, her hiding by wearing costumes as a daily outfit…

The book is great as it draws attention about mental health issues and handles realistic aspect and situations, not just about Esther’s own fears but also the ones which involve her parents and twin brother. The story slowly reveals a huge trauma her family has been going through and learning to accept till it stopped matter…until the moment when Jonah becomes friends and is shaking all what’s been holding together. There are high climaxes and really surprising turns, so I will warn you – don’t estimate the novel too low, it has a potential.

The synopsis pretty much describes the book, but the ending surprised me, and how modern the topic was added and how strangely the love was uniting the pieces of all the characters together, not easy knowing the circumstances, but definitely worth seeing/reading the transformation and character development.

Have you read this one? What were your thoughts? What did you think about the issues discussed? Thank you for reading my short review!

Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart

GenuineFraudRating: 1*

Published: September 7th 2017 by Hot Key Books

Synopsis: Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat.
Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete. An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two. A bad romance, or maybe three. Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains. A girl who refuses to give people what they want from her.A girl who refuses to be the person she once was.


AAAAA, WHAT A DISAPPOINTMENT!

The book is set very clever – a reader learns what happened – every chapter brings it one step prior to what I have read just now. Still I would suggest for you not to cheat while reading.

Genuine Fraud is about a broken personality who has no real sense of what she is doing, she has, however, a wish to be belong and be loved, needed and every time facing denial she goes off and tries to prove them wrong in the most brutal way, so they have no chance to change. I could say this is not entirely a youth read as some may get wrong ideas in one’s mind. This is a twisted mystery, where one drama escalates to another one and nothing is solved. The book holds so many unanswered topics that it kills to read any further.

The main character Jules has witnessed her parents death and being taken by the same person, her mental stage and whatsoever is under question in my opinion, she is jealous to mostly everyone and doesn’t approve her best friend having relationships with all the guys. She creates double stories and hides her truth self at all times, to everyone and about everything her stories, as a compulsive lair don’t match. For those who start to question her, they must go..

I picked up the book because of the high popularity and the cover intrigued me.
I read through the book until I reached a point –  I don’t care what it is about, I had prior read a review which said it was so interesting and after the last page the reader went straight to the very first page to reread again, and that was the only thing that kept me reading further. But, my own thoughts did not reach this stage at all – kind of wasted reading time.

Ambitious June reading…

img_20180607_105437-1611355923.jpgHello June!

I have approximately 3 weeks, let’s be honest to read all of these 7 paper and hardback books…How, I don’t know, plus 3  light contemporary ebooks. How many books did you choose to pick up from your long reading list for June? I am assuming you have a never-ending list, always adding some more. Mine, well, these are the books I had set on the library list for months and it’s now or never, I want to read as many as possible books that are set on the reading list and then I will create a new one. Pity is to realize, not all the books are available, some are published in Asia, and my only option would be ordering/buying…which I don’t do, unless I really loved the book and have read it…

Do you recognize a book from the photo? Which one you aim/ have read?

So my June ambitious read:

+ 3 contemporary  ya romances:

It’s possible I might postpone the ebooks for next month, but I do hope to finish these in June.  So, I have crime/detective fiction, 3 fantasy books, 5 ya’s.

Wishing you all a great June!

May Wrap Up

img_20180528_205208-1611355923.jpg

Hello!

May seems long gone, and June have been here for awesome 6 days already. How happy are you about your May read? Did you read more books than planned? I wish I had, but I didn’t, overall I am glad I made it through the three books I planned to read. 3 books only (!), that’s such a small number to read, yeah, barely made it, hehehe:

I had set possible higher expectations for my May read to be honest, I flew to meet my friends in France  (post about the trip will follow) and I was thinking I will read while on plane, while on bus from Beauvais Paris airport to city centre, but I didn’t  – I fell asleep the moment plane start its engine, the moment when the bus left the terminal! And of course, the idyllic thoughts I will sit and read in the evenings – really doesn’t work – first of all, I had amazing time chatting non-stop and while in Paris alone-the weather was absolutely not reading welcoming, hehe..and I spent a lot of walking, which I planned to, and I am so happy I did. The idea to sit in a coffee place while having lunch and read – failed, maybe if i stayed for a whole week in capital alone… Found too interesting to watch the people pass by and the surrounding architecture! More about it later.

I also made hiking trip and meeting another friend for few days. It’s been a socially active month, which is an emotional booster. May fall to be my birthday month and so I won’t lie it was one of the most fantastic months in the recent years, even I didn’t read that much! I was greeted by more people than I expected, as this year I wasn’t expecting any gifts, but happen quite the opposite. I wasn’t given any books, but other items as stationery for writing letters, notebook “today is the day” to write my faviurite ‘to-do-lists’, pens, bath salt, candles and melting wax, champagne tasting and souvenirs, favorite chocolates and custom tea holder “house” and jeverly.

But do you make the combination of travelling + reading work for you? How do you balance the time?

For June I have set quite an ambitious reading and travelling plan. Fingers crossed it works!

img_20180507_122527-1433795899.jpg

The Last Girl (Maeve Kerrigan #3) by Jane Casey

TheLastGirlJaneCaseyRating: 4****

Published: November 15th 2012 by Ebury Press

Synopsis: The teenage girl was the first victim.
Her throat cut to the bone, she didn’t stand a chance. Her mother, at least, had time to fight back. Briefly.
Called to the crime scene in leafy Wimbledon, Maeve Kerrigan’s first thought is that this is a domestic dispute gone bad. But the husband is found lying bleeding and unconscious in an upstairs room. A top criminal barrister, he insists he’s the third victim rather than their prime suspect, even if he is a man who makes enemies easily.
The only other surviving family member is fifteen-year-old Lydia. She was the one to find her mother and twin sister’s bodies – and the only witness Maeve has. But she isn’t talking…


The setting as always takes place in London, Uk. Maeve Kerrigan works together with her partner Derwent to solve which looks a typical family drama crime scene, where a woman and her daughter has been murdered quite drastically. The husband is the main suspect, sort of, but how did he knocked himself off when the paramedics arrived? How and why the other daughter was left untouched? Is there a pattern?

There is no straight direction where the plot will go. What makes it more complex is the husband absolutely don’t care what or who may be the guilty one…suspicious, isn’t it? His whole personality as well as everyone else’s is digging mystery, everyone is keeping secrets and aren’t honest even to themselves. His past is quite interesting and he’s constantly hiding something…

The book is interesting, fast moving 4h read. The main female character, Maeve is intuitive, smart and has social skills to approach the matter right to the point, but not making any stupid comments than her colleagues say… Highy suggest to read the books in the right order, to understand the way each character gets build up in this particular detective book.

I enjoyed the 3rd book in the series! Oh my, I had my suspects and I was wrong, which I like even better as the suspense is kept well, and when i figured the person I have suspected isn’t the one, it’s more interesting then, reading all the why’s and how’s.

 

A Treacherous Curse (Veronica Speedwell #3) by Deanna Raybourn

deannaRayburnRating: 4****

Published: January 16th 2018 by Berkley

Synopsis: London, 1888. As colorful and unfettered as the butterflies she collects, Victorian adventuress Veronica Speedwell can’t resist the allure of an exotic mystery—particularly one involving her enigmatic colleague, Stoker.
His former expedition partner has vanished from an archaeological dig with a priceless diadem unearthed from the newly discovered tomb of an Egyptian princess. This disappearance is just the latest in a string of unfortunate events that have plagued the controversial expedition, and rumors abound that the curse of the vengeful princess has been unleashed as the shadowy figure of Anubis himself stalks the streets of London. But the perils of an ancient curse are not the only challenges Veronica must face as sordid details and malevolent enemies emerge from Stoker’s past. Caught in a tangle of conspiracies and threats—and thrust into the public eye by an enterprising new foe—Veronica must separate facts from fantasy to unravel a web of duplicity that threatens to cost Stoker everything. . . .
 


This is the third book in the series and it helps having read the previous two to understand both main characters Veronica and Stocker, their humor and each characteristics. The book takes the reader in Egyptian setting, this time there’s a mystery that involves Egyptian gods and curses and the start is pretty mysterious.

Have you read the mystery books of Egypt and other expeditions in the world before? I have and those pretty much remind me of all the myths and mysteries that have involved those who are going on expeditions. I was ready to discover some very interesting puzzle truth..

If you have read the previous books in the series, you know what to expect, that the facts may not be as what they seem to be, the greater story will be discovered underneath. But what I love is Deanna’s writing style, how she has mastered to create Veronica’s character, her spiteful tongue and excellent humor.

The joyful and great teamwork with Stocker. In this book we, the readers, learn more about Stocker’s first wife and his ex-best friend, we learn even more than we have known before, and still Veronica surprises.

I don’t want to give away the mystery. I suggest everyone to read A Treacherous Curse.

Back to Reading!

Hello!

You may or you may not have noticed my absence from posting anything. Yup, I have had a massive Reading Slum for over more than a month and it wasn’t influenced by any book that I read… as it sometimes is… My last read in March was “When Dimple Met Rishi” by  Sandhya Menon and I didn’t post the review on any sites, it was OK read, I wasn’t super excited, but enjoyable and I will be reading the other book by the author, and then I simply wasn’t into reading. I wasn’t interested  to read anything at all, none of the books I have ordered from library, none from my stock, this never happens, those were just sitting on my shelf. I wanted to read but didn’t, my year reading goal will most probably will be affected by this, hopefully in the next reading months I will be able to reach more than the current goal set on Goodreads!

I wanted to read, took out the book, placed it next to the sofa, on the table, making the book visible and attractive to pick up and read and I knew I will be lost in the book as soon as I will actually read and the next minute will be when I have finished the last pages, this, however, did not happen.

I wasn’t into reading or watching any YouTube book reviews. Have you ever been this bad that you have lost interest in any form of reading? I went to cinema twice and I wasn’t excited about the movie choices I made, but it was classy to go for a first show of Avengers movie after midnight ^^ and then in my free time I was traveling/ visiting friends. Going for walks and exploring new places.

But I am back and HUNGRY to read. It’s nearly mid month of May, and being optimistic and realistic at the same I plan to read maximum 3 books:

  1. A Treacherous Curse (#3) by Deanna Rayburn
  2. The Last Girl (Maeve Kerrigan #3) by Jane Casey
  3. Darkness Echoes – short story collection by various authors

I have started to read Darkness Echoes and the very first first story was spooky enough to get scared, hehehe, those stories are that good!

Ilonita

 

The Lost (Stone and Oliver, #1) by Mari Hannah

TheLostRating: 5 *****

Published: March 22nd 2018 by Orion

Synopsis: Alex should never have agreed to the spur-of-the-moment holiday with her sister. Seven days felt like a year without Daniel, her ten-year-old son. This was the first time they had been apart since he was born and her husband had convinced her it was a good idea.
It was a bad idea. Daniel has gone missing. As local CID officers, David Stone and Frankie Oliver have been assigned their first case together. A small boy’s fate lies in their hands and the pressure is on. And when someone close to Daniel is found dead, they begin to feel the heat.
 


Thank you to Orion Publishing Group for an e-arc in order for my honest review!

This was my first book by the writer and so I was very intrigued by the synopsis and ready for a new detective series + I enjoy the cover. The book has over 300 pages, but it has small print layout, so it took me more than regular 300 over pages read, be ready for a chunky read! The book starts slow but soon it builds up very well written and interesting. This is my first read book written by the author.

The Lost is a new detective series that shows two main characters, Frankie Oliver and David Stone. Stone is Frankie’s boss and has recently started to work within the team, although having a great career in London before. They both work as partners in investigation over a boy called Daniel who went missing right after his football practice. Leaving everyone at the edge, especially his step-dad who’s been left on charge while his mum, Alex left for a week-long holiday in Mallorca with her sister. Daniel is a boy who’s not a stereotyped boy his age, he is very responsible and there is no way he would have planned something adventurous or left on purpose…

The book is great as it brings new suspense and new, much more in-depth, perspective to what’s happening. The plot took me by surprise, oh, it was sooo good! I can’t write it as it would ruin your interest to read it. There are many sides to each of the suspects and reader, be ready to questioning each of them on your own, flipping pages to the very start and thinking who’s behind what! The book touches various topics such as family relationships, loss of a baby, lies, financial breakdown,  and plot twists and turns.

The book also touches David’s and Frankie’s personal lives, their secrets and how those influence their team…. can they trust each other, how much have each of them learned from each other and observed.

I really enjoyed the read and I am looking for the second book # The Insider being published on November 2018, so few months only left for waiting. That’s what I like, having not that long time in between the books.

The Pearl Sister (The Seven Sisters #4) by Lucinda Riley

img_20180317_191537710692237.jpg

Rating: 4****

Published: October 31st 2017 by Macmillan

Synopsis: CeCe D’Aplièse has never felt she fitted in anywhere. Following the death of her father, the elusive billionaire Pa Salt – so-called by the six daughters he adopted from around the globe and named after the Seven Sisters star cluster – she finds herself at breaking point. Dropping out of art college, CeCe watches as Star, her beloved sister, distances herself to follow her new love, leaving her completely alone.
In desperation, she decides to flee England and discover her past; the only clues she has are a black-and-white photograph and the name of a woman pioneer who lived in Australia over one hundred years ago. En-route to Sydney, CeCe heads to the one place she has ever felt close to being herself: the stunning beaches of Krabi, Thailand. There amongst the backpackers, she meets the mysterious Ace, a man as lonely as she is and whom she subsequently realizes has a secret to hide…


*Spoiler free review*

Love the cover!
I picked up the book from library and planned to wait until Sunday to read it, however, I couldn’t wait and started on Friday evening, page by page till 4:40am and finished the rest on the morning. 688 pages in less than 24 hours.

This is the series of Seven Sisters 4th book which focuses on CeCe’s story finding way to her roots and discovering she is capable of way more than she has always thought about herself and as a reader I have learned about her, from her sisters perspectives in the past books. CeCe does surprise. She wasn’t my favorite before and I got to know her better via The Pearl Sister’s book.

The book is taking reader to Thailand and Australia, learning more about Aborigine culture and art, historical fiction tension between these two groups. It tells more about pearl farms and slavery, Christian community and absurd small town behaviours, high class and richness. The story as always is written in the past – 1900’s and the present nowadays. The writing is smooth and interesting, engaging with the other books in the series. In The Pearl Sister the reader learns more about Seven Sister concept more than in any other books in the series. Still, the mystery is at the same level – my questions aren’t answered yet, and I have no idea do my conspiratorial thoughts are somewhat possible.

As this is about CeCe, the one who has always played the loud girl and persuasiveness has been her strength over sister Star, to hide her dyslexia and nightmares she have every other night. She goes to Thailand to find peace and strength to travel to Australia, the country which she has avoided all her life. In Thailand she is still recognized from the time when she worked there with Star and thus, she gets a place to sleep somewhere for few days. But most of the time she spends at the beach and her thoughts. Until she meets Ace who is mysterious and as much lonely as she is and they find “a team”…

The story in the past is telling us about Kitty, a character born in over religious family and being well-educated she starts to see, that her father isn’t the same person whose role he is playing, she also reads a lot and books her parents would be shocked, she is fond of Australia and dreams of working and support her own living. But all her parents are thinking is how to marry her off after her 18’s birthday. Typical for that time… as the safer comes an opportunity to travel to Australia as Lady’s helper for nine months, which she takes and without her own knowledge, that’s where she will find new opportunities, heartbreak, and love.

Plot development from Kitty’s time to CeCe is complicated and follows an idea of old believes. It shows both storyline character developments, issues and how important one’s word is.

I would suggest to read in the right sequenced order to understand other sister interactions and not to spoil those books by what you read in this one. Overall, I am looking forward to read The Moon Sister #5 this Fall.

Four star rating because there were points that was not told in detail to give a proper explanation.

Because You Love to Hate me – Edited by Ameriie

img_20180315_114825710692237.jpgRating: 2**

Published: July 24th 2017 by Bloomsbury Childrens

Authors: Renée Ahdieh, Ameriie, Soman Chainani, Susan Dennard, Sarah Enni, Marissa Meyer, Cindy Pon, Victoria Schwab, Samantha Shannon, Adam Silvera, Andrew Smith, April Genevieve Tucholke, and Nicola Yoon

BookTubers: Benjamin Alderson (Benjaminoftomes), Sasha Alsberg (abookutopia), Whitney Atkinson (WhittyNovels), Tina Burke (ChristinaReadsYA blog and TheLushables), Catriona Feeney (LittleBookOwl), Jesse George (JessetheReader), Zoë Herdt (readbyzoe), Samantha Lane (Thoughts on Tomes), Sophia Lee (thebookbasement), Raeleen Lemay (padfootandprongs07), Regan Perusse (PeruseProject), Christine Riccio (polandbananasBOOKS), and Steph Sinclair & Kat Kennedy (Cuddlebuggery blog and channel)


This is 13 short stories not anthologies by 13 various writers and 13 BookYoutubers – in one book.
I chose to read as I saw it being picked up by many reviewers and gaining various reviews and it was highly marketed read. I was interested to read the short stories and see how the co-operation took place – not because those were created by well known BookTubers, but because, i was genuinely interested to read some short stories and read the writing.

I don’t have an exact explanation – I got stuck by the first few stories as they were slow and I felt bored and I have been dragging the reading for a month. There are some good stories inside and as these 13 are all written by various writers I am sorry to admit – enjoyed only 4 of them, less than a half, not counting the BookTubers tales:
*The Blood of Imuriv by Renee Ahdieh;
*Gwen and Art and Lance by Soman Chainani;
*Julian Breaks Every Rule by Andrew Smith;
*Sera by Nicola Yoon;

Having read the stories I am interested to find more books written by Andrew Smith and Soman Chainani – these are new to me.

I am surprised to like the story by Nicola Yoon as her other novels I didn’t enjoy and would have probably not picked up next book, well, now I am not so sure, which is great!

Renee Ahdieh – I started but didn’t finish one of the last series written by her, but not because I wasn’t interested but because I could not extend my library loan 😀

Have you read this book? Give a try to read the stories yourself, you may like them! Tell me which stories you enjoyed the most?

Kasey & Ivy by Alison Huges

img_20180111_1829521473004262.jpgRating: 5*****

Release:  March 20th 2018 by Orca Book Publishers

Received an e-arc from Orca Book Publishers, for an honest review, thank you!

This is the first book I read on 2018 and my new favorite, this is a middle grade oriented book, but I truly enjoyed it! Enjoy the cover as it is artistry and intriguing.

Kasey & Ivy is about a 12-year-old girl Kasey who gets hospitalized for more than a month because of her bruise on the leg, which turns out to be infected very badly and the situation is serious. She is placed in hospital where every other patient is an elderly and none of the other patients are kids or anyone her age.

The book starts with Kasey’s first letter to her best friend Nina, the book represents only letters from Kasey’s side, although it is well understood Nina writes back to her too. Kasey in her letters tells absolutely everything – her fears, her viewpoints to hospital inhabitants and employees, daily routine and how lonely she feels all alone in her room, which slowly gets filled with some items from home, but loneliness is something that a hospital patent has to deal alone at nights when she has insomnia, even when her parents/family visits her during the day she would rather hear anything else from “outside world” than chatting about her leg, but that’s all her parents are talking about… This book gives an inner view about dementia and what it makes people turn, how hospitals and old people are not so scary, and how an unexpected relationships may turn up.

There’s Ivy, there’s an interesting episode how she comes in the story, but I won’t spoil it for you!

It also touches vaguely a topic that she is not very close to her mum, because being the eldest of 5 children, the youngest she keeps on calling as “baby”. This book involves a very good storytelling, humor episodes, and main character growth.

February Stats

Hey, Readers!

How are you and your reading plans? It’s nearly mid-March and here I am to have a look what I read in February, I had a list of  6 February TO-BE-READ books I made it to read 4 of those and moved the rest two for March reading list.

I read 5 books in February, genres: children picture book, ya, romance, and crime fiction.

5 *Star Ratings:

4 *Star Rating:

  • The Girl in the Woods (Fjällbacka #10) by Camilla Läckberg The new release (The end of Feb) of the series with Patrick H, and Erika. Enjoying the crime fiction, can be read separate, but would advice to read in sequence, although each book has it’s own crime investigation, the story goes on for the main and side characters.

2 *Star Rating:

  • Miles Away From You – A.B. Rutledge a new release for March 22! It covers “demi” gender issues, bisexuality from male youth point of view and a sad/ healing/ recovery when your girlfriend tried to make suicide.

I am overall very happy with my February reading month, nearly all of the books received high ratings and I enjoyed each of them. So far, fingers crossed, I have read 11 books off the plan.

Thank you for stopping by and reading my review of February stats. Are you now considering to read any of these? Let me know in the comments below which of the books would you suggest me to read – something similar to these? Looking for your suggestions! Ta.

More Than We Can Tell (Letters to the Lost #2) – Brigid Kemmerer

MoreThanWeCanTellRating: 5*****

Release Date: March 8th 2018 by Bloomsbury Children’s Books

Synopsis: *While this book exists in the same universe as Letters to the Lost, it is a standalone title.*
Rev Fletcher is battling the demons of his past. But with loving adoptive parents by his side, he’s managed to keep them at bay…until he gets a letter from his abusive father and the trauma of his childhood comes hurtling back.
Emma Blue spends her time perfecting the computer game she built from scratch, rather than facing her parents’ crumbling marriage. She can solve any problem with the right code, but when an online troll’s harassment escalates, she’s truly afraid.
When Rev and Emma meet, they both long to lift the burden of their secrets and bound instantly over their shared turmoil. But when their situations turn dangerous, their trust in each other will be tested in ways they never expected. This must-read story will once again have readers falling for Brigid Kemmerer’s emotional storytelling.


Thanks a million to Bloomsbury Publishing for an arc in order to give an honest review!

“More Than We Can Tell” is about to surprise you how well written and emotionally loaded the book is, it deals with many topics and most importantly – how much is not said but assumed either by the look of someone, either by their activities, be this someone from your family or complete stranger. The story cover emotional distress by someone online, someone from the past, and present, it tells a realistic truth about adoption and foster care situations and how system is right and wrong, it tells about family and how much one means, how much human relationships matter to take a right decision and how much they influence of who we grow to be. It was heartbreaking story but a good one, the one where all the main characters face a difficulty and grows through a journey…it tells about best friends and it tells about being a teenager and dealing with so much on one plate…not being understood by own parent…being more than they assume you are…

I loved the way it give an insight of stereotypes we all know, but we don’t pay attention to change them – how one looks, wear clothes,  how baggy clothing not always means they are “weird” and “not a friend material” may prove wrong – character Rev in the book is. In real life stereotyped that there are awesome people who finds communicating awkward…

I loved Emma’s character, she deals with nerve wrecking situation where’s her mum just won’t understand her at all whenever Emma says, assuming she is just wasting her time with gaming…but it is not at all what it seems. Emma did code her entire own game and it’s popular and people are actually playing it, it’s real, but – how difficult is to find a moment to share the news with parents…there never seems to even have a normal conversation…and life is annoying if you ask anyone…thankfully there’s some good players on the game…

…and Emma meets Rev more than once by pure accident and it turns out they find what to chat about…

Declan is busy with his girlfriend and seems they are really getting well together, he is still very attentive to Rev and reads his mind instantly, knowing his best friend by heart. He also deals with his past and faces someone he has been angry for ages and this is something that sets him free…he is Rev’s best friend, he is someone who finds easy to talk to people unlike it is for Rev… When Matt comes in Rev’s family it is him who builds the bridge…

Will there be more? Please! Thank you once again for this awesome read, a new favorite!

The Backup Bunny by Abigail Rayner, Greg Stones

BackupBunnyRating: 3***
Release: 6/03/2018

This is a lovely story from perspective of a Bunny who’s “backup” saver for Max mother, if a little boy looses his favorite toy. One day it really happens…The story tells how the bunny feels living in the drawer where he is kept, how he is longing to be hugged as much as the “real” one and waits on his opportunity…

This story book was my backup plan for unexpected situations with my niece, the illustrations are lovely, spreading cuteness from each page.

A young reader will learn about Max personality and him changing and how fun is to have various toys with little details.

BackUpBunny1

The Girl in the Woods (Fjällbacka #10) by Camilla Läckberg

CamillaLackbergRating: 4.5 *****

Published:  February 22nd 2018 by HarperCollins

Synopsis: A MISSING CHILD…
When a four-year-old girl disappears from in the woods just outside Fjällbacka, the community is horror-struck. Thirty years ago, a young girl went missing from the exact same spot, and was later discovered, murdered.
A MURDER…
Back then, two teenage girls were found guilty of the killing. Could it really be a coincidence that one of the girls – now a world-famous actress – has just returned to Fjällbacka? Detective Patrik Hedström starts investigating, with his fearless wife, Erica Falck, by his side.
A TRUTH BURIED LONG AGO…
But as Patrik and Erica dig deeper, the truth becomes ever murkier. For centuries ago, a woman burned at the stake for witchcraft cursed the Fjällbacka families who accused her, and now it seems the past may be coming back to haunt them…


Thanks a million to Harper Collins for an e-arc, this review is my honest thoughts.

I am happy having read the recent #10 book in the series, it’s been a while since I read ninth book and loved to return to new story set in Fjallbacka/ Patric Hedstrom detective series and his smart wife Erika, who really solves and gives best tips ever 🙂

I gave the book 4.5 stars, so very close to have full rating, still there were few items I felt against the smooth plot. The cover is impressive! So much fits the story and the thriller mood, interesting read for half of a day for sure!

The book unites many, and I say many characters and their standalone, as one may think at the start, but we know the writing too well, that these all will come to picture – for the main plot. I found the overall plot a little bit too often broken/interrupted jumping from one character set to another and to the past setting. The Girl in the Woods is a mixture of secrets, lies, detective, crime and drama, which hasn’t been solved in the past and drags along, involving new and new characters, who will make a deadly halt to everything.

The story of the past involves a true historic background with fictional story, but … it set’s the attitude of that time thinking and “morals” and is quite disturbing at the end. It’s about families, poverty, “no-family ties”, vengeance…

The present takes a real puzzle trying to solve the past links to the present crime. The four-year old
Linnea goes missing and her parents aren’t sure when or how did she got lost, because none of them has checked on her properly…through out the plot I often had to question were the parents not a little too careless, to allow a 4-year-old to freely play on his own outside the house or alone in the woods? Everyone is so calm about it..that alone felt fishy…as I don’t believe any of the childcare services would have seem this to be ok in real world. What’s odd about the little girl is – she is SAME AGE and lives off at the SAME HOME only 30 years later ,a girl her age went missing and was found murdered alone in the water 30 years ago…ooooh, it does adds the thriller spooky setting!

30 years ago two teenage girls were accused to have been guilty and thus it shaped their lives forever, one had grown up in a bad family, where’s another one – in sort of “perfect” family….the death of the little girl named Stella, set it all upside down…for better or worse..as none of the girls ever get over the trauma and were coping, dealing with outcomes every day… one become a famous actress, the other one a housewife…but they both had their children at the same age… There will be soo many questionings and conspiracy thoughts of – how, what, who…

I will leave out any spoilers, because I want you to read it and have your own opinions about the book! It will be handy if you have read the previous books to figure the jokes and funny sets for the characters that story line develops from each book a little bit more.

My book reviews!

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