#BookReview Love, All by Tamsen Parker

It’s that time again… I get to read another book by my fave! Tamsen Parker’s writing style has always vibed with me in a way I cannot understand. Whatever jedi mind tricks she is playing, I’m totally into it.

I managed to buy this beauty a while ago but lost it among my kindle library (what do you expect, Bookbub these days is killing me with those freebies). I marked it down on my TBR because I HAD to read it. I couldn’t not read a beautiful, little romance by my fave. So yes, I am 100% biased in my review. Beware!

Nate is an engineer who is also a tennis instructor (we’ve already got a winner folks), and he stumbles upon Ruby, who is a single mom looking for a good time. At first, this seemed like an easy one night stand sort of deal, but things get steamier. Ruby doesn’t want anymore time with him, but Nate is head over heels and wants some more!

The chemistry in this book is ON FIRE (totally a pun in reference to another Tamsen book, just saying). I totally loved the relationship between these characters and how Ruby’s daughter perfectly fit into the situation as well. Chloe was actually quite spunky and funny, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

My biggest negative was I wish there was a little bit more. I understand this book was not meant to be very long, but I wanted to see their relationship grow and change just a bit more. Maybe two or three more chapters? The issues were fixed quite quickly for my tastes. Other than that, I think they were quite the pair! Not perfectly matched right away, but they totally grow on you.

Honestly, I adored this book. If you’re looking for a quick read where a relationship builds hot and fast yet actually faces real issues, grab this book! It’s super sweet and worth the read.

Five out of five stars.

 

Check out this fabulous book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com

 

You can find more books by Tamsen Parker littered throughout my blog. Give one of these reviews/books a try:
#BookReview If I Loved You Less by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview For Her Own Good by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview Hot for the Holidays by Marie Force, Tamsen Parker et. al

 

Find out more about my fave author, Tamsen Parker, on:
Goodreads
http://www.tamsenparker.com/
Twitter – @tamsenparker

 

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#BookReview Encyclopedia of Insects by Jules Howard

I LOVE learning, so seeing this encyclopedia perked me right up! Sure, insects can be creepy and crawly, but I was down for learning some new stuff about everyone’s “favourite” creatures! And I wasn’t disappointed!

Do keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive collection of bugs, but it is an excellent start for eager minds!!

The pictures in this book are absolute awesome! I really enjoyed the damselfly picture that stared into my soul (hoenstly, it was creepy to stare at my but the art is AMAZE-BALLS).

Here are select things I learned:
1. There’s complete and incomplete metamorphosis? Wait… what? Why did my biology classes skip that information? THAT IS SO COOL.

2. Dragonflies are actually predators, and Damselflies are a thing. Who knew?

3. The Walking Flower Mantis looks super cool and pretty. I even googled them because I didn’t believe they were actually pink. They are gorgeous!! They look like flowers!

4. Toe Biters, Hummingbird Hawkmoth & Slave-Making Ants. That is all.

Things I would like to avoid:
1. Swams of locusts. Kthanxbai.

2. EARWIGS HAVE WINGS. REPEAT: EARWIGS HAVE WINGS. They are way grosser now. Yuck. They can chase me when I run away!

Overall, this book is totally, super amazing! I would absolutely recommend this to young and old readers alike! You’ll learn a whole bunch. I could totally see this book being used for school projects or for nerdy little kids like me (back in the day, of course) who just wanted to soak up knowledge like a sponge. I will definitely be using some of these facts for my useless trivia I spout out at people on a regular basis.

Five out of five stars!

Thank you to NetGalley and Quarto Publishing for giving me an opportunity to read this book!

Check out this marvelous book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Indigo

You can find out more about Jules Howard by clicking the links below:
Goodreads
Twitter @juleslhoward
http://www.juleshoward.co.uk/

Here’s some other non-fiction-y reviews featured on my blog to fill up your TBR shelf:
#BookReview Lab Girl by Hope Jahren
Book Review: Birds Art Life: A Year of Observation by Kyo Maclear

 

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#BookReview Shadow Child by Rahna Reiko Rizzuto

Shadow Child by Rahna Reiko Rizzuto is a beautifully written tale about the struggles of a set of twins.

When I sat down and started this book, I was absolutely floored. The writing style was so stunningly beautiful, I couldn’t help but metaphorically describe it as fine wine. Rahna has a wonderful sense of story and her word choice is magnificent. I didn’t want to put the book down.

But then I got to the meat and plot of this story.

I didn’t fully know what was going on and my questions weren’t answered. So many parts of this story were hinted at but then just fell through. There’s also four different story lines going on so it required a lot of brain power to keep track of what was going on. On top of that, Koko is a nickname of both girls, so those sections had me using extra brain power to try to figure out if this was one or both girls or neither.

I liked learning about their Mother’s back story, but I didn’t think she was the main protagonist of this story. I was far more interested in the twins’ stories than hers. While their Mother’s narrative was interesting to follow, I just didn’t care as much. I wanted to know what was going on now since there was a lot more drama during the present time in the story. Hana and Kei had such a thrilling narrative that I needed that story more.

This book felt more like a novel I’d read in an English class than one I would enjoy in my hobby reading. I seriously want someone to pick apart this novel and explain it to me. Is there a reason why we didn’t get all of the information about what happened? Is there a reason why we needed to know so much about the Mother and not the girls? I’d absolutely love if the author even explained the themes. I think I’d appreciate this book more if I could pick it apart and analyze it.

Honestly, I have the feeling that there is a piece of this book missing somewhere. The two halves of this book don’t intertwine perfectly and it just gives me this strange feeling. The story isn’t finished so I don’t totally feel satisfied. While I think the writing is beautiful and Rayna’s talent is obvious, I’m not one for cliffhangers or non-endings. I need to know what happened, so I don’t feel strongly about this book.

Overall, this book is interesting. I’d love to see it in an English class setting or have a BookTuber explain all the ins and outs so I can appreciate it more.

Two out of five stars.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

Check out this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Indigo
Kobo

 

Find out more about Rahna Reiko Rizzuto on:
Goodreads
http://rahnareikorizzuto.com/
Twitter – @r3reiko

 

If you’re looking for some more books to top up your TBR shelf, here’s some you might enjoy:
#BookReview Law and Addiction by Mike Papantonio
#BookReview Deep Cosmos by Project Kyle
#BookReview The Age of the Child by Kristen J. Tsetsi

 

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#BookReview Love Comes for the Rock Star by Savannah Adams

Love Comes for the Rock Star is another fabulous addition to the Magnolia Grove romance series by Savannah Adams!

This series is absolutely my guilty pleasure series. I sink into these books and am whisked away into a beautiful, romantic world. I couldn’t put the book down and totally binged the whole thing, all the while making notes of the cutesy things that happened along the way!

This time around we have Rick Miller, rock star extraordinaire who just wants some time away from the spotlight, and Macy Cooper, a music teacher and conductor who just wants her students to succeed. These guys met back in vacation bible school when Rick pulled the cute little Macy’s hair and ran away – over and over and over. Flash forward twenty years, and these two soulmates bump into each other… and as it is said, the rest is history.

There are so many amazing things about this book, but let’s just settle on a few of my personal faves:

1. Star Wars themes for ringtones? YES PLEASE! My inner nerd got so thrilled! The Imperial March from Empire Strikes Back and The Darth Vader theme? Heck yes!

2. I thoroughly enjoyed thinking that Rick was strutting around like Mick Jagger on stage. That had me giggling.

3. “Smart aleckey” – I thought I was the only one to use this kind of lingo? Apparently I am not!

4. Music teacher + Rock Star = Love? It’s just too darn adorable.

5. The connections to the other stories was super sweet. Thankfully, these books can be read as a standalone. It’s more of an easter egg than a necessary evil to read the other books. You can understand these easily without any prior information.

Overall, this book was just amazing! I’m so glad I picked up another book in this series. I hope it continues so I can binge more, and I hope that many other readers come to read and love this series just as much as I do!

Five out of five stars!

Thank you to Savannah Adams for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review.

You can find this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com

Find out more about Savannah Adams:
https://www.savannahadams.com/
Twitter @HEA_Romance
Goodreads

Here’s a review I did for the other books in this lovely, little series!!
#BookReview Love Comes for the Bodyguard by Savannah Adams
#BookReview Love Comes for the Army Ranger by Savannah Adams

 

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#BookReview Dead Women Tell Tales by Rajeev Singh

I picked up Map of Desire, a haunting anthology, to read Rajeev Singh’s latest story. This guy is a master of erotic horror (at least in my books) and it’s always a pleasure diving into his stories. They are creepy, weird, haunting and everything you expect out of an erotic horror. In all the best ways, it’s horrifying and disturbing.

Dead Women Tell Tales is extremely wicked. Our lead character, Leon, stumbles upon this brothel like place where dark secrets and passions hide. Suddenly he is given the choice to enter doors, and darkness consumes him. Sexual nightmares, dark and haunting past secrets and wild exploration occurs. All of these will leave you shivering, staring in awe at the page and had me completely struck with shock. Like normal, Rajeev has made one wildly epic erotic horror.

I keep saying again and again that to me Rajeev is this king of erotic horror. He always blows me away with his writing. It’s descriptive, oddly addicting and pulls the reader in. If you haven’t picked up erotic horror before, this author is one guy you should check out. I’m always just amazed at his work. It’s wild. This story was no different! It’s much shorter than some of his other works, like The Erotic Muse, but it still packs quite the punch.

Four out of five stars.

Thank you to Rajeev Singh for supplying me a free copy of this anthology in exchange of an honest review.

 

You can find this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Kobo

 

Find Rajeev Singh on Goodreads – Author Page

Here’s some other books by Rajeev Singh that have been featured on my blog! Check them out:
The Erotic Muse by Rajeev Singh
Blood Rain by Rajeev Singh

Give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

And like me on Facebook for more urgent updates! @BriarsReviews on Facebook

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#BookReview Geo by Kevin Miller

Geo by Kevin Miller is an excellent science fiction read!

I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by GEO. I don’t normally dive into science fiction books, but I absolutely love Kevin Miller’s writing style. I’ve read his Milligan Creek series (a middle grade series, check it out if you haven’t yet), so I wanted to pick up his other, more adult work. It’s safe to say that his writing style works in both age groups and genres! I absolutely loved and was hooked to this book.

The plot itself is intriguing – there’s an elevator to space and it gets stuck. The man who helped create it, Clarence, is called back to help fix it. But, it’s not going to be easy!

While this book may not be the longest tale, it packs it’s punch. I honestly had to binge the whole thing because not only was the story intriguing but I had no idea what was going to happen! Even in the few pages this book has, it feels so full of story and plot! It’s absolutely incredible what Kevin Miller can do with under fifty pages.

I would highly recommend this book. As I said, it’s under fifty pages so it’s a pretty quick read. If you love science fiction, short stories or just want something unique on your shelf, then pick this book up!

Five out of five stars!

I received a free copy of this book from the author, Kevin Miller, in exchange of an honest review.

 

You can purchase this book on:
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Kobo

 

Check out Kevin on his website: http://www.kevinmillerxi.com/
Or on twitter: @kevinmillerxi
Or on his Goodreads Author Page

 

Kevin Miller’s middle grade series, Milligan Creek, has been featured on my blog too! Check them out:
#BookReview Unlimited by Kevin Miller
#BookReview The Water War by Kevin Miller
#BookReview The Great Grain Elevator Incident by Kevin Miller

 

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#BookReview In Search of Valor by Gary Corbin

In Search of Valor by Gary Corbin is an excellent thriller following a female university student who wants to one day be a detective.

This is the prequel to A Woman of Valor, and goes into the university life of Val Dawes. During her first year studying criminology, Val meets Rhonda – a potential partner for their paper in Crim 101 with the wicked Professor Hirsch. The two discuss what paper they going to write together, and then decide to go pick up Rhonda’s daughter Jada. Unfortunately, for both of them, Jada is not there and has been abducted. Drama and thrills ensue as the local police department, detectives, Rhonda and Val try to figure out who could have taken Jada and why. Val gets to put her detective skills to work when she helps out the local department in this case.

I was hooked to this story! I truly enjoyed it and couldn’t put it down. There’s enough drama and action in such a fast paced manner that I barely noticed the time and pages flying away on me. It was just the perfect length and I felt that there didn’t need to be anymore to this book. It’s a great intro to Val’s past life, and sets it up beautifully for the next book.

Gary Corbin has an excellent writing style that makes reading easy and fast. The story moves flawlessly and I never once felt the need to put it down. He’s a master at this genre, in my humble opinion. I always love a good book by Gary Corbin! They never disappoint.

I would highly recommend picking up either book in this series. You don’t need to read one to know what’s going on in the other, but they do compliment each other well.

Five out of five stars.

Thank you to Gary Corbin who sent me this book in exchange of an honest review.

 

You can find this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Barnes & Noble
Indigo
Kobo

Check out the sequel, A Woman of Valor,  on:
Amazon.com
Amazon.ca
Kobo
Goodreads

Here’s some links about the author, Gary Corbin:
Goodreads
http://www.garycorbinwriting.com/
@GaryCorbin

Check out my other reviews of Gary’s books:
#BookReview The Mountain Man’s Badge
#BookReview The Mountain Man’s Bride by Gary Corbin
#BookReview The Mountain Man’s Dog by Gary Corbin
#BookReview A Woman of Valor by Gary Corbin

Give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

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#BookReview Sasha and his Red Leash by Yossi Lapid

Yossi Lapid is back at it again with this super sweet book!

Sasha is the cutest little pup, and it’s time for him to have an adventure! He’s very lucky, gets to have fun walks, and gets treats! Buuuut, he hates his red leash. The red leash is absolutely awful! He must fight the urge to be free but unsafe.

This story is sweet! I think it’s a great picture book with a lovely little story. It’s also packed with the most adorable pictures. Sasha is a little troublemaker, but he’s super cute. Kids will love him! There’s also a spot in the book where you can talk with your kiddos about whether Sasha and his owners are being safe or not, so it has a bit of an educational kick to it! I love books that educate!

I absolutely love the illustrations. They are soft, colourful and very sweet. I think they fit the story just perfectly!

Overall, this book is such a cute, little gem! I adore it! I’d highly recommend this book for your children’s picture book shelf!

Five out of five stars.

Thank you to Yossi Lapid for sending me a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review.

Check out this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com

You can find out more about Yossi Lapid on:
https://lapidchildrensbooks.com/meet-yossi-lapid/

Check out more fun children’s books by Yossi Lapid:
Quick #BookReview Snowman Paul and Kate’s Olympic Dream by Yossi Lapid
#BookReview My Snowman, Paul by Yossi Lapid
#BookReview Yara’s Tawari Tree by Yossi Lapid
#BookReview Snowman Paul Returns to the Winter Olympics by Yossi Lapid

 

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#BookReview The Champagne Conspiracy by Ellen Crosby

The Champagne Conspiracy is now one of my top 2020 reads!

I love a good cozy mystery to snuggle under the covers and read some tea with. This book fit the bill and was a wonderful distraction from the bad weather in my town.

This is the seventh book in the Wine Country Mysteries series by Ellen Crosby, but don’t be discouraged by that number. I found this book super easy to jump into. It would have been nice having all of the background relationships and mysteries to fall back on, but I had zero issue becoming instantly addicted to this book and feeling for these characters.

Lucie and Quinn make wine and are good buddies! At their Vineyard one day, Gino Tomassi (an older gentleman who also likes and makes wine) strolls in and presents an old mystery about his family. Lucie and Quinn decide to help out after a pinch of blackmail and tragedy are brought up. One of Lucie’s friends also has some mystery and intrigue occurring in her life, for which Lucie must help out with. Will both be solved? Will there be any closure for these families? Also, flapper dresses!

This book easily became my guilty pleasure and I truly want to grab the rest of the books in this series. It’s a bit more than a cozy mystery, but still fit the bill quite well. There’s a pinch of romance, lots of drama, a mystery that you can see coming if you pay attention and lots of humour. Also, alcohol and wine! The descriptions of wine… Ellen Crosby has a way with words, let me tell ya! There was also a splash of history, which I always like hearing about! Ellen made the history far more interesting than any of my history teachers ever did.

I found the ending to be a little bit predictable, but only if you really paid attention. I was thoroughly addicted to this book so I saw the signs, but I don’t think every reader will. Books like this deserve all the hype! It’s well written and well thought out!

Overall, this fast paced, cozy mystery is a must read! It’s delightful, full of character development and likeable characters. Also, I love the representation of a physical disability in a main character. It’s shown in such a real and respectable way to – it doesn’t slow her down but it’s there. Much respect!

Five out of five stars!

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

You can find out more about this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Indigo
Kobo

 

If you love cozy mysteries, here’s some other books featured on my blog that you might enjoy:
#BookReview Poison by Punctuation by Kelley Kaye
#BookReview Depraved Heart by Patricia Cornwell
#BookReview A Study for Love by Ruth Miranda

Check me out on:

Twitter: Briar’s Reviews – @ReviewAlholic #briarsreviews

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#BookReview The American Crusade by Mark Spivak

The American Crusade by Mark Spivak was a fast-paced thriller full of excitement!

I normally don’t go for political thrillers, but I like to spice up my reading shelf once and a while. Mark Spivak’s novel, the American Crusade, seemed like the perfect fit! And man, was it ever! I can honestly say this book makes the genre seem WAY cooler than I was led to believe.

In this novel, we follow Vice President Hornsby. This man is brutal and wants his time in the spotlight. VP Hornsby, President Cane and the government make some harsh and disgusting decisions in relation to a terrorist attack that crashes into the Mall of America. The worst part? The government most likely knew this attack was coming.

We follow two point of views: the American government and a young radicalist. The battle between liberty and freedom against utter control is showcased. Especially the fact that deception can be so easy…

One interesting part of this book was the take on the Fourth Crusade. This wasn’t my favourite part of the book, but it was unique and made the book stand out.

I’m honestly impressed. While this book might not make me the newest fan of all political thrillers, I’m glad I picked this one up. It’s fast paced, full of thrills, takes some wild risks and is just really cool. I like Mark Spivak’s writing style and his different take on 9/11.

Overall, this book is an excellent read for lovers of political thrillers!

Four out of five stars.

Thank you to TCK Publishing for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review.

 

Check out this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.com
Amazon.ca
Barnes & Noble

Find out more about TCK Publishing and the author, Mark Spivak, by clicking the links below:
https://www.tckpublishing.com/
https://markspivakbooks.com/
Goodreads Author Page
Twitter – @eatdrinkjourney

 

If you love political thrillers, here’s some other books featured on my blog that you might enjoy:
#BookReview Do Not Ask by Elaine Williams Crockett
#BookReview The Rainbow Vintner by Geza Tatrallyay
#BookReview And The Wolf Shall Dwell by Joni Dee

 

Give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

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