#BookReview Do Not Ask by Elaine Williams Crockett


Do Not Ask is an excellent crime/thriller!

This book is addicting, my goodness. I love a good political, crime novel (it’s evident if you look at my book shelf or my lists on Netflix…) so getting the chance to read this book made me so excited! I’ve been more focused on romances recently that I almost forgot this genre existed!

Do Not Ask is the second book in the Warren Alexander series, but you don’t need to be caught up to understand a thing! This book was a smooth read without the background, since Elaine fills in any big holes that you need to know along the way. She also makes this book full of fast twists and turns that will keep you addicted and following every story line.

Every part of this book was fantastic – which is shocking! It’s rare to find a book that I can’t pick apart some major flaw (so kudos to Elaine!). I loved the speed of the story and I found it to be unique and thrilling. I didn’t want to put this book down! Alongside all of that goodness, I also got heavily involved with trying to guess who did what. Since there was just enough back story to get the reader going, it makes it easy to follow along and play the detective game along with the plot.

The book is also realistic, which makes it an easy read. There’s no aliens or crazy conspiracies – it’s a fiction novel that makes it feel so real. There are some aspects of this book that seem a little odd, but it’s not surprising that they exist by any means (some adult chasing after young, pretty girls might make you squeamish, but it happens).

So, the question is – where do I want to see Elaine go from here? I definitely think she’s talented and needs to keep writing! This book was excellent, and I hope she continues writing to get better. My expectations are for her to write another novel, and I hope she’s able to write it so it’s not necessary to read all of the books before it – that should help gain some more readers. And hopefully, this book goes a little more mainstream. It’s awesome! It’s so good that it could be on a shelf next to Kathy Reichs in my local book story!

Five out of five stars.

I received a free copy of this book from the author (Elaine Williams Crockett) in exchange for an honest review.


Comment below with your favourite political thriller novel!

Did you enjoy this review? Check out another review you might enjoy! #BookReview The Winter Family by Clifford Jackman

If you enjoyed this review, tweet using the hashtags #BriarsReviews and #DoNotAsk

Want to check out more by Elaine Williams Crockett? Check out her website! http://www.elainewilliamscrockett.com/


Purchase this book:

Amazon Canada – Do Not Ask

Amazon USA – Do Not Ask


#BookReview #OnTheBrinkofPassion by Tamsen Parker


Round Five of the Snow and Ice Games! I’m sad to see this series go, because I never knew how much I needed a sports romance book! But, this series is worth the ride! Maybe if we’re lucky, Tamsen will make a summer Olympics version of this series for Tokyo 2020… Hey, a girl can hope!

So let’s get into the meat of this story:

This time around we are graced with Jubilee and Beckett, and they are world class figure skaters. They weren’t initially paired with each other: Jubilee was originally with her husband (who has since passed away), and Beckett had been playing around with who his perfect partner would be. Finally, they settle on each other and seem to be the perfect fit. And of course, what’s figure skating without some competition? Sabrina and Todd, two of the people Jubilee and Beckett had been paired with, are their rival competitors.

Not even 24 pages into this sexy story, and I already love the dynamic between Jubilee and Beckett. They are sassy, competitive and keep each other on their toes. I absolutely love the fact that yet again Tamsen changes the dynamic of her main characters’s relationship. And if you think that this dynamic wavers at all, it doesn’t. The snarky and sarcastic comments keep coming and have perfect comedic timing. Honestly, this pair is my favourite out of all five of the books Tamsen has written in this series.

I liked the fact that Tamsen slowly revealed what happened to Jubilee’s husband Stephen. The way she slowly weaved it into the slowly really hit me emotionally. If she would have given away what happened earlier, I don’t think the story would have worked as well.

This story is sweet, sometimes heartbreaking, and fulfills everything I wanted in the final novel of this series. It felt like a roller coaster of emotions and it hit every note it needed too.

One thing about Tamsen Parker is she knows how to keep her fan base happy – she isn’t afraid of change. I can’t say enough how proud I am to watch her grow as an author because SHE’S SO GOOD. Ugh. Her books are so frustratingly good!

So, brief summary of this book for those wondering what type of topics this novel includes – minor spoilers of the plot without spoiling specifics…be warned:
1. Sexy figure skating pair get some sexy time on (Jubilee – female lead, Beckett – male lead).
2. Jubilee’s past partner (on and off the ice) has died, and both Beck and Jubilee have had other skating partners since.
3. Jubilee and Beck start having a sexual relationship, Jubilee is but isn’t into it (but consents)
4. Jubilee and Beck’s pasts are slowly revealed, which includes some harassment
5. Past partners Todd and Sabrina should not be trusted…
6. Lots of detailed sexy time

Overall, this book is super steamy and is worth the read. If you were only going to pick one book out of this series, I’d pick this one. It’s my favourite, I love it! All the books are good, but this one just inched by the competition (I’m not sure if it’s technical points or performance points where it surpassed, if we’re using figure skating as a reference).

Five out of five stars!

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley & the author Tamsen Parker in exchange for an honest opinion. All thoughts and opinions are my own and are not influenced by other sources.


Did you enjoy this review? Why not check out another you might enjoy? #BookReview Fire on the Ice by Tamsen Parker

Head to twitter to give @TamsenParker or Briar’s Reviews a shoutout!

Check out the rest of Tamsen’s library on Goodreads! Tamsen Parker on Goodreads or on her website TamsenParker.com

Do you have a favourite romance novel? Share it below in the comment section!

#BookReview The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort


The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort was an interesting novel that left me completely disinterested.

As someone going into business, this book intrigued me. I also really want to watch the movie, but I wanted to read the book beforehand, so that helped me with picking this read. I thought this book would be over the top exciting, since that’s all I’ve heard about the movie, but alas it was not. This book was probably my most boring read of the year, and that’s not an over-exaggeration.

This book is said to be non-fiction, but Jordan Belfort’s opening lines at the beginning of the book also say he may or may not have changed the timelines, which lead me to believe it’s not 100% accurate. (But is anything 100% accurate in a memoir? You are relying on memory, which can tell some pretty epic lies…but that’s another story). Reading about all the antics within his career was definitely interesting – it’s not something I really thought about. All the drugs, alcohol, prostitutes, etc and all the craziness tied in together was definitely the basis of a really cool read. But, this book fell flat. The first “book” (it’s separated into books that have chapters in each) was fast paced and epic! I was hooked to every word I read! But Book two and onward left me feeling “meh”. It was slow paced, then it would suddenly pick up pace for two pages, and go back to boring again.

That being said, Jordan’s life is definitely worth a read – but maybe by a different author? This is Jordan’s first book, so with a little more experience and skill this book could have knocked it out of the park. Jordan definitely has talent in writing, it just needs a little more tweaking before he becomes a really great author.

As the narrator, Jordan does come off as that wealthy rich kid stereotype everyone hates. It is sometimes annoying listening to his ranting about how much money he makes, and his hot wife, and how he cheats and does drugs and will absolutely quit but never does. That felt like it was 60% of this book – the same comments being repeated in different ways. “I’ll quit…” then he doesn’t, “I’ll stop!…” then he doesn’t, and so on. There’s also no remorse for what he does. He is destroying lives, but hey, I’m rich so whatever! That’s what I got out of this book. There was no life lessons at the end, no big “Ta Da! I’ve done well!”, it’s just him being rich and all of the bad things he does in his life, and the end! His penis, erection and everything about his sex life is mentioned numerous times – and of course, according to him it’s god walking on earth. He rarely insults or looks down on himself, but will quickly do it to anybody else.

Overall, I’m sure Jordan’s life was and is interesting, but his story could have been told better. It’s almost as if he hasn’t learned anything in his life, or at least that’s how it’s portrayed. And, better yet, there’s another book in this series if you want to continue reading because HE DOESN’T FINISH HIS STORY IN THIS BOOK.

2 out of five stars.
Why? It had so much potential, and was so great in the beginning, but tumbled far down about one quarter into the book.


Did you enjoy this book? Check out another read you might enjoy! #BookReview So Near the Horizon by Jessica Koch

#BookReview Pop Sonnets by Erik Didriksen


Pop Sonnets was perhaps one of the best reads in sonnets, aside from the wonderful William Shakespeare himself!

This wonderful set of poems has sonnets based on many pop culture hit songs. Each sonnet is written in the typical Shakespeare form (or English form) “a-b-a-b, c-d-c-d, e-f-e-f, g-g.” All of the sonnets flow smoothly and do not seem to be to cheesy. Also, each sonnet fully describes the song it is based upon.

I absolutely loved this book! Each sonnet gave me a chuckle as I read them. It seemed as if Shakespeare could have written them himself!

Five out of five stars! I saw nothing wrong with this wonderful book of sonnets! I loved it!

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.


Enjoy this review? Check out another book you might enjoy! Book Review: PAPER IN THE WIND by OLIVIA-MASON CHARLES

#BookReview Life Seemed Good, But… by Richard Bell



I have been slowly reading this incredible anthology book and I have to say, it is 100% worth it if you need a laugh!

This anthology series is all about comedy. Each little story (and I mean little, some are hardly a page) is full of smiles and giggles to make your day a little bit better. The stories connect a little, but it’s not a giant “Marvel Cinematic Universe”, if you catch my drift.

It’s hard to make me laugh, but in the security of my own home I allowed myself to laugh out loud at this book. It’s cute, it’s sweet and it’s shockingly amazing. There are some weirder stories, and some with a little bit more “adult content” or hints towards it. There are also many references to popular culture that you can pick up on (almost like a little game). In the back, Richard Bell included a glossary just in case you don’t understand his colourful language, as well.

This book was written as a form of therapy for Richard, when his wife was going through treatment for cancer. As someone who’s fatherh as passed away from cancer (and who went through waiting rooms and treatments galore), I think this book is a marvelous idea. I really hope this book reaches the masses, because it’s well written and hilarious! It’s also standing behind a really good cause.

I really loved that Richard Bell was constantly referencing aluminum foil hats. To be honest, I haven’t heard people talk about them in years and it made me giggle! I remember kids in my class who used to WEAR aluminum foil hats because of silly conspiracies, so the memories that came flooding back reading this book made it so much better.

If you want something fun, quick or funny then this book is for you. I recommend this book to EVERYONE. Honestly, it’s worth the read. Take some time out of your day and have a good laugh. Times are tough, we need some more positivity around and this book can provide it.

I have also heard a portion of the money made from this book will go to cancer research, so why not help out a good cause while you’re at it?

Five out of five stars.

**Richard Bell got in contact with me and provided me a free copy in return for an HONEST review. This is my personal, honest opinion.


Did you enjoy this book review? Why not check out another book you might enjoy? To Wendy’s With Love: the 22-year Lunch by Diane Keyes- BOOK REVIEW

Give me a shoutout on twitter if you read this review! @ReviewAlholic

Check out Richard Bell and his other books on Goodreads! Richard Bell on Goodreads

#BookReview Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare


Here’s another #ThrowbackThursday – a novel I read years ago, but reread and created a review for!! This is one of my favourites – Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare.



Clockwork Princess is a beautiful finish to one of YA’s best series in recent years.

For years I waited anxiously for a book like Clockwork Princess – a story that ends beautifully, perfectly and without total heart break. With characters as strong as Jem, Will and Tessa, we needed a solid ending that would make all fans happy but also tie up the story just perfectly, and Cassandra Clare delivered.

This book will pull at your heartstrings and destroy you. It’s such a beautiful ending it’s hard to believe it’s all over with. The ups and downs of this series is ended just perfectly that there are no loose ends and no destroyed fans (at least, from what I’ve seen). I dare say that this book is the best book Cassandra Clare has ever written – it rivals the base Mortal Instrument series, and has one step up. This book was even better than City of Heavenly Angels, in my opinion. With such a satisfying conclusion, I have to say it deserves more than five stars. Not many books can be finished so perfectly.

Would I recommend this series? Absolutely. While it’s a YA, it definitely doesn’t feel like your typical YA story. Adults can enjoy this – there isn’t as much ooey, gooey silly teenage angst that is in most YA books. It’s a grown up YA with the odd silly scene. So it’s safe to say it’s a good read. This series can also be used as a standalone – you don’t need to read all the other series (Mortal Instruments, Dark Artifices) to understand this book at all. It is the prequel series to The Mortal Instruments, if you’re interested in reading further (they can be read out of order via the series though. TMI came out first, then this series and now The Dark Artifices). I would suggest reading the three books of this series in order though – it’s worthy.

It also has one of the most beautiful covers. I love the original cover – I saw a new one at my local book store recently and it wasn’t as beautiful, but in terms of cover art – judging the book by it’s cover it allowed for this book. With such a great cover comes such a great story.

Problems with this book/series:
Yes, there’s a love triangle. Can they be annoying? Yes. Does it work in this book? Yeah, it’s YA so it’s kind of an expected plot twist these days.
Weak characters – yeah, there are some. But personally, I find having all characters be strong can make for a boring book.
Repeat characters – Cassandra Clare uses the same characters/developments with different names and faces. It’s annoying, but as long as you aren’t just reading her books and expand your library, you don’t notice to much.
Rule Breakers – some of the “cannot be broken rules” are broken in this book. It’s kind of annoying in my eyes, but what can you do? It created the happy ending most fans wanted, so I guess we can over look that…
Tessa – FINALLY we learn what Tessa is. I’m a little disappointed it took so long because it would have been cooler to flesh out all about her throughout the series, but whatever, it works, I guess.

So, overall, this book is really on the fence for most readers – people either love it passionately to no end (ugly cry, putting the book on a pedestal and praying to it sort of deal) or hated it (rip the pages out, burn the book, demand a refund, etc). I’m on the end that enjoyed it and I definitely kept the book (Look at that cover, how can you not love the book for the cover alone?).

So, I will give it five out of five stars. It had it’s faults for sure, but it was a great read that kept me interested, was fast paced, and had an ending that I found to be good.

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#BookReview Seduction on the Slopes (SIG #2) by Tamsen Parker


*Arc courtesy of Tamsen Parker/NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

Why am I reading a book about winter games in freezing weather when I’m cold and dreaming of the summer? Because Tamsen Parker has another wonderful book out! So maybe reading a book about cold isn’t the smartest idea, but Tamsen has some hot and heavy romance in this book to warm you up! (Well, I wish it worked that way…).

1. F-Bombs galore! For me, this was actually one of the more amusing parts. There are some perfectly timed f-bombs for comedic purposes. Ah, how I love Tamsen’s fruity language.

2. I’m not the biggest fan of M/M books (mainly because most of them are trying to follow the “stereotype” of what society has deemed M/M relationships to be) but this one was more realistic (within the scenario). It’s a major plus for this book not to be the stereotypical “norm” that has become some recent M/M books.

3. “Ass-Muffin”. That term, that’s a pro all on it’s own.

4. This book is a rather quick, easy read – I found it to be addicting to the point I wouldn’t put it down.

5. There’s some great comedic tones within this novel. This book is not just hardcore M/M romance scenes page after page, there’s a plot, some sporty goodness and drama all wrapped up into one beautiful bundle. It’s also complex in the character development and back stories. These characters aren’t Mary Sue’s!!!

1. Too Short? I felt the first book in this series was to short, and now this one also felt a little too short. But on a positive note, it’s also not too long…

2. This can be a pro or a con depending on what type of reader you are – there is lots of CHEESE in this book. And by cheese, I mean cheesey dialogue. For me, I love it (mostly because Tamsen does it “right” in my mind) but it can be considered a con by many – so I’ll list it in my con list.

3. Series wise, these books are all focused on different characters. To me, that’s kind of a con considering I love some of these characters and want much more of them. Maybe I can convince Tamsen to make some Infinity War-esque novel of all of these characters… Maybe not. It might be worth a shot though…

4. Two books in a row now have had these sugary sweet endings that all tie up perfectly super quickly. That might be my biggest con of all for some of Tamsen’s books. It’s not a bad thing, but it’s definitely something that could be worked on (can you tell I’m in school exam mode right now with the constructive criticism and feedback? Oh boy).

Overall, this book is hella sexy and definitely worth a read. If you are a fan of romance, M/M, sporty novels or a splash of comedy in with your romance, this book is for you!

Five out of five stars!!


Did you enjoy this review? Why not check out Tamsen Parker on Goodreads! Tamsen Parker on Goodreads

Or check out Tamsen’s website! TamsenParker.comor @ReviewAlholic

Why not give Tamsen or I a shoutout on Twitter while you’re at it?! @TamsenParker

Or check out my Goodreads page for an archive of all of my reviews! Briar’s Reviews on Goodreads

If you enjoyed this review, check out another you might enjoy: HIS CUSTODY by Tamsen Parker Book Review