#BookReview So Much Love by Rebecca Rosenblum

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So Much Love by Rebecca Rosenblum is a different look at the typical murder/kidnap storyline.

This book is an interesting read, and I wasn’t entirely sure what I thought about it that I had to sit on the story for quite a few days. There are multiple storylines, and not all are equal. The perspectives of Catherine and her professor really intrigued me, while the other point of views bored me and sometimes made me question why they were in the novel. Basing it off what the back cover says, it’s showing the “complexity of love and the power of stories to shape our lives”, but I’m not quite sure how they all fit in.

I do love Rebecca Rosenblum’s writing style. When I was reading Catherine’s point of view I was hooked and wanted to much more. I even expected so much more – since the ending left me feeling like there were parts of the story missing. Catherine and her husband’s desire to have a child just disappeared – it was such a big part of the story and it was never brought up again, not even a side line comment in regards to it.

This story wasn’t exactly a mystery or a thriller, but it wasn’t your typical murder/kidnapping story either. I enjoyed seeing the different points of view in regards to their feelings about the situation, but it just felt like there were pieces missing. I would definitely suggest reading this book because it’s style of writing is fantastic, but plot wise it could have been cleaned up a bit (in my opinion). There were also some points in regards to our character knowing her kidnappers name yet we never hear an introduction or how they knew each other. It was quite frustrating to me…

Overall, I think this story had so much potential and Rebecca will only grow the more she writes. I hope she comes back to this story at some point (perhaps a sequel?) and expands more on this concept. It was such a great idea and it was unique.

Three out of five stars.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

 

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#BookReview Depraved Heart by Patricia Cornwell

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Depraved Heart by Patricia Cornwell was a solid, steady crime novel.

This is the 23rd book in this series, and of course it’s the first one I read. Believe me, that doesn’t help AT ALL. Not knowing a lot of the background about these characters and their situations didn’t help my understanding of the relationships between these characters when reading this book through. While it didn’t ruin the entire book for me, I think it somewhat ruined the experience. Why is the bad guy, well, the bad guy? Why do certain people not like each other? Patricia tries her very best to give as much background as possible in short bits, but it just wasn’t enough.

Besides that issue, this book was really good! I love a good crime thriller – like Kathy Reichs, Patricia Cornwell has her own style and it’s fantastic! It’s a splash of mystery, some R rated scenes, and some solid character development along the way.

This book seems like it spans a long time, but in reality I think it’s only a day or two. I don’t even think it goes into the night! So this entire plot involving a dead body and “finding” the killer happened in under 24 hours?! It might not be believable, but it somehow worked. I didn’t even notice it was only one day until I looked back over the story and some of the other reviews. I would like to see that expanded on – maybe make the books over a couple days, at the very least? But that’s just my opinion.

Overall, I liked this book. I definitely would like to start from the beginning and work through all 23+ books, but I doubt I’ll be able to find them all (or find the time. My goodness, summer is already over when I wrote this review?!). Gritty crime stories like these always make my days more interesting – some days I love an ooey, gooey, guilty pleasure romance and other days I want an R rated crime/thriller or horror to take up my time.

Three out of five stars.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

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Did you enjoy this review? Check out another one you might enjoy!! Book Review: Confessions of an English Psychopath by Jack Strange

Quick Book Review: Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

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Photo via Goodreads.

I love Gillian Flynn and her writing story! I decided to read this novel after I became obsessed with all things Gone Girl.

This novel, from my understanding, was the first one she had ever written that was published. Even for a first novel, it was amazingly thought out and had me hooked at every word. I found it to be a little short and I saw the ending coming, but I still found the book addicting and well planned.

There’s not much wrong that I can critique about the book, other than wanting more action to happen or the book to be longer (but I think that’s because I adore Gillian Flynn and I just want more books and writing by her out right now). I did see the ending coming from the very beginning, but that might be due to the part that I read and watch a lot of books and television shows about crime.

I found this book not to be as good as Gone Girl, but still an amazing read. For me, the book was a five out of five stars. A good crime novel mystery that made me want more out of Gillian Flynn immediately.

Wonderful novel! 5 out of 5 stars!

Author Interview: Mindy M. Shelton. Author of FROM FIRST VICTIM TO LAST: SERIAL MURDERERS

Today, I am featuring a debut author on my blog – Mindy M. Shelton! This interview will give a different perspective into the life of a non-fiction true crime author that has recently been featured on my blog!

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Mindy M. Shelton has written both non-fiction and fiction in her career including the Ready Research Series and All  Tucked Inn: An Elizabeth Burke Thriller. It is such an honor to be able to interview her and be able to feature her books on my blog! Thank you Mindy for such an incredible opportunity and thank you for all of your hard work!

Now onto the hard-hitting questions…

1. For an introduction, can you try to describe yourself in one sentence?

Just a hardworking mother and wife, who loves to spend her time putting ideas to paper (or computer screen!).

2. What got you interested in true crime?

My first short-stint in college was as a Criminal Justice student. My mother was a paralegal and my father a policeman in the Army, so it truly is in my blood. I would have become a CSI, which was known as an ID Tech back then, but my husband and I had twins at the very young age of 19, so I had to delay my college dreams for a few years. By the time I went back, business was a better fit for my lifestyle. But, now I do everything I can to read and write within my first love, criminal justice.

3. How did you choose which murderers to feature in your books?

That’s a great question as I didn’t think at the time to really describe that in the books, but I chose them based on a couple of metrics. The first was that they had to be convicted, or had already pled guilty. I didn’t include anyone who was acquitted. For instance, Casey Anthony was not included in Mommies who Murder, no matter what my personal opinion of her case happens to be. The second metric I used was if there were any accomplices. I tried not to include a Bonnie and Clyde type situation, only because I didn’t want to include Bonnie if Clyde were the true murderer. And thinking on it now, I also tried to balance the well-known cases with the lesser-known, if that makes sense. In Serial Murderers, I made it a point to use a couple we all had heard of, like John Wayne Gacy and Gary Ridgway, but then I also included some I’d never heard of, like Wayne Williams and Robert Hansen. I learned a lot researching all of these books, so it was beneficial for me to include murderers I didn’t remember.

4. Out of all the murders you listed in the books, which were your favourite? Did any leave you speechless?

Many left me speechless! I seriously had nightmares when I was writing Serial Murderers. I think the ones that stick out in my memory though, were the children murderers. There was a case where the child (around 15-years-old, I believe) was being punished. Nothing severe, just a typical “go to your room and think about what you did” situation. Well, he got a gun and snuck up behind his parents, who were just innocently sitting on their couch watching TV, and he whispered, “Close your eyes, I have a surprise for you” and then shot them both in the head! I couldn’t believe it. And the only reason we know he said this was because the poor father lived to tell the tale. What makes a person think through this type of retribution and actually commit the act? It’s fascinating.

5. How long do you spend researching before you begin writing?

I spent a good couple of weeks researching before the writing began and then continued to research throughout the process. I tried to make a list of the people to include before beginning the book, but several times something caught my eye during research and the list changed.

6. What is one fact about yourself that you think might shock your readers?

Both times I’ve been pregnant has been with multiples! My doctor said I could have had a litter, but when it was all said and done, we were blessed with three healthy, wonderful children. I couldn’t ask for anything more. Oh, and thanks to being an odd child myself, I can say the alphabet backwards really fast. Not sure if any of this is shocking, but my husband uses it as my party trick.

7. Is there a genre of book you would like to write in the future?

I’m working on a fiction book right now that I’m extremely excited about. I’ll be sure to request your thoughts when it’s ready to be beta-tested, but all I can say right now is that it’s a YA thriller. Think FBI-meets-a-nonmagical-Harry Potter. LOL, actually it’s about ten teenagers, but I’ll leave it all that…

8. How do you get yourself inspired when going through writer’s block?

That’s such a depressing situation, but it happens to us all. Since I have a full time “non-writer” career, I travel a lot. Through those travels, I have found I do my best thinking while driving on a long trip. So, when things get stagnant, I hit the road and play an audiobook. It gets the brain going and the ideas flowing!

9. If you could collaborate with any professional (writer, actor, director, etc), who would you like to collaborate with?

The expected answer would be Ann Rule, and yes, I’d love to sit down with her, but if I could only pick one person it would be Nora Roberts. I’ve read, and loved, her novels since I was a teenager. I want to work with her and figure out how she can put out so many books in a year and if it really is ghost writers, how did she find so many that can duplicate her format. It’s impressive. No matter the book, or information in the book, I always love it. Not sure if I’ve ever read a Nora Roberts (or J.D. Robb) book I didn’t enjoy.

10. Finally, what question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview? How would you answer that question?

I guess I always expect to be ask why I write. It sounds so simple, but it’s not. I write because I have to. I write because I love it. No, sometimes I hate writing, but the outcome is what I crave. But, here’s a funny story. When I was a waitress, and said twins were about three-years-old, there was a Psychic Convention in the city. Not something I ever believed in, but I waited on a psychic who wanted to read my fortune to me. She used cards and as she flipped one over, I saw a single letter in the corner of the card. By the time she flipped five cards, those letters spelled out the word NOTES. She turned to me and said, “Oh, you’re going to be a writer.” I was shocked. Never even thought about writing. Then over the years, no matter my profession, I was always tagged with writing the documents everyone needed. I thought about that psychic and sat down to write a book. All Tucked Inn can be found on Amazon and is a fiction murder mystery. Isn’t it strange how one person can affect your life? I find it so very interesting. Was I destined to be a writer? Or did I become a writer because I was nudged? Fascinating, to say the least.

Oh, and I’ve always wanted to be asked about my least favorite part of the process. It’s definitely the editing, creating a book cover, and marketing. Every single part except writing. I’m not sure the average reader knows what is in involved in self-publishing. When I see a review on a new writer that gives him or her one star and mentions a couple typos, I cringe. It’s so easy to make an error and that poor writer probably didn’t know they’d have to be line editor, copy editor, cover designer, agent, publicist, etc. Just to get a book out there is an accomplishment, so I ask people to be nice if they are taking the time to review a book. Especially if it’s free or very inexpensive. Yes, it should be up to “James Patterson” standards, but he has teams of people telling him where the typos are J And that is why those ebooks are $13.99!

How can readers discover more about you and you work?

Website: Website
Blog:  Expert of None Blog
Facebook:  Mindy M. Shelton Facebook
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mindy_shelton
Amazon Author Page:  Amazon: An Elizabeth Burke Thriller by Mindy M. Shelton
Goodreads: Mindy M. Shelton on Goodreads

Thank you so much to Mindy M. Shelton for such an in-depth and fantastic interview! It was a pleasure to be able to interview her and get an insight into her life (on and off the page!).

Interested in Mindy M. Shelton’s books? Here are the Goodreads Links and Photos:

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Form Birth to Death: Mommies Who Murder (Ready Research #1)

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From Cradle to Grave: Children Who Murder (Ready Research #2)

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From First Victim to Last: Serial Murderers (Ready Research #3)

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From Playground to Prison: Siblings Who Murder (Ready Research #4)

30969534From Wedding to Funeral: Spouses Who Murder (Ready Research #5)

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All Tucked Inn: An Elizabeth Burke Thriller

Quick Book Review: Loxy Quum and the Merge Experiment by Ricky Mon

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Photo via Goodreads.

This novel was surprisingly very addictive and action packed. When I first picked it up, I wasn’t sure whether to expect a more child-like novel, or a Young Adult novel, but it was more towards the latter.

You follow children with very unique traits (similar to super powers, but more along the lines of being half alien and half human) as they try to rescue their parents. The characters were very relatable despite their nonhuman qualities. They all had realistic personalities and were interesting to read about.

While I found the plot to be very predictable, it was a good, short read that didn’t take up much time. I would suggest a little bit of an extended plot to make things more interesting, but I wouldn’t change much else.

The writing style was good and easy to read, and I didn’t find any outstanding errors that made the plot go far from where it should have.

Overall, four out of five stars due to it being a little boring in the sense I’ve heard this plot before over and over.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

Quick Book Review: Zodiac by Romina Russell

Due to Black Moon’s release day, I’ve decided  to post a throwback review of Zodiac! I received an ARC when it first came out! Yay Romina! Congrats on release day!!!

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Photo via Goodreads.

 

Zodiac was a charming novel that featured an amazing original idea.

At first, I found Zodiac to be a really slow and boring start. The author introduces many words and places in her universe that weren’t explained well, but as the story progressed I began to understand the language she made up for her fictional universe. Once the book got going, I found that I had myself hooked onto the story and I wanted to know more about the characters. I even began to feel for the characters, which is always a good sign for the book!

The start was slow, which made the novel hard to read. I almost put the book down three times due to how boring I found the start to be. Once I was three-fourths into the book, I was hooked, but I would suggest the author to make the story a little more enticing towards the beginning instead of the end.

I felt like I needed a Zodiac style dictionary for some of the words used in the novel. The author explains the words once or twice, and then they are used constantly. Sometimes I needed a little reminder of what Psynergy was or other terms that aren’t used in day to day life. But, this author is making her own universe so the new words were used in a good way! Her own fictional universe deserved it’s own language!

I liked the character development and the twists and turns of the novel! While the book was slow, the action that did occur was appreciated. I loved the development of the story and the different pieces of action that happened. I would have liked to see more of the different Zodiacs involved in this novel if I had to choose anything to fix about the plot.

Overall, I did enjoy this book! I liked reading it and I found it to be an original and well thought out idea! I can’t wait to read the next one now that I’m hooked on the first!

Four out of five stars for Zodiac, due to the slow start.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

Quick Book Review: Bone Idol by David Louden

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Photo via Goodreads.

Bone Idol (bohn ahyd-l), despite confusing me by the titles, was a really nice read! And by really nice, I mean it kept me hooked, interesting and on my edge about what was going to happen next to the main character.

I enjoyed reading about the main character as he grew up, but I sometimes felt a little confused as to what age stage he was at. I did my best to guess at what age he was at while I was reading it, but I sometimes found it a struggle to understand if he was still a preteen or a teenager yet.

I found the novel was just perfectly long enough to not get me bored and wishing for it to end. I was almost begging for more when I got to the last chapter. I would definitely want to continue reading this series if another book came out and followed the lead character or his family again.

One word of advice was that I would have liked a more clear plot. I wasn’t exactly sure what was going on for a complete plot, other than following the character as he grew up. Yes, I understand it was somewhat an autobiography but I would have loved a clear plot to the stories.

I did enjoy this book and I would recommend it to many readers who want a different read, that is a fictional themed novel but has a more real life setting while you follow the character.

Four out of five stars, due to the lack of a continuing plot and the age confusion I experienced while trying to figure out how old the lead character, Doug, was throughout the novel.

Amazing book nonetheless!

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.