Quick Book Review: Guilty:A Split Moment – A Split Family by Jane Bidder

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Photo via Goodreads.

** spoiler alert ** This book was an amazing take on having a family member go to prison.

This book started out very slow for me, and I did not enjoy the first quarter of the book. I found it very hard to get into, until Simon went to prison. Once Simon went to prison for texting and driving and in turn killing a woman, the book became very interesting to me and had my hanging on at every word. It gave a very interesting perspective on what happens to family relationships when one person is thrown into a prison.

I found the relationships in this book very believable, and I also found the plot line very believable as well. The conversations made sense, and along the way I had constant questions that were eventually answered.

The only way this book could have been any better was if the beginning was more catchy to hold onto my attention. It felt very slow and boring at the beginning, but it was an introduction.

I still have questions about what happened to the characters and there is a special place in my heart for them.

Four out of five stars! Due to the boring beginning.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

Quick Book Review: Jacob’s Odyssey by Russ Melrose

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Photo via Goodreads.

Jacob’s Odyssey was an interesting zombie apocalypse novel.

I found this book to be well written, but the first half of the book left me rather bored. The main character, Jacob, does not speak to anyone for the first half of the novel. Without any conversation the novel seemed rather bland. It’s like watching someone play a video game of trying to survive the zombie apocalypse – it can be an interesting read, but it wasn’t something I enjoyed.

Jacob’s first contact with someone other than zombies is half way into the book, once I got there I thoroughly enjoyed the novel. The mixture of conversation and action worked perfectly well.

If anything, I think the author could work on putting more speaking roles in the beginning of a novel. Perhaps the sequel to this book will be different, but I was left feeling cheated. Half of the book was boring, always reading about how Jacob was moving around just trying to survive. The lack of conversation made it incredibly boring for me.

Overall, I did enjoy this novel. It is well written and is a good fiction read. Anyone who likes fantasy, supernatural or zombie apocalypse dystopias would enjoy this book.

Three out of five stars due to the first half of the novel.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

Quick Book Review: A Simple Murder by Eleanor Kuhns

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Photo via Goodreads.

This book was a very slow start, but it had a very interesting and attention grabbing middle and ending.

I love myself a good murder mystery novel, and this book added to my love of trying to figure out who killed the victims.

The book follows William Rees as he goes back to see his son at a sort of religious gathering place. I did not fully understand the setting and what type of religion these people were, but it was a good place to throw a murder mystery in.

A young woman who is relatively new to the community is murdered and Rees is hired on to solve the murder. He ends up getting involved with multiple murders as he goes around trying to crack the mystery.

The book is set in the 1700s and proves to be a good time for the novel as well. At first I did not like the fact that it was back in the past, but once the book got farther along with the story I began to enjoy the setting.

Overall, I did not find many faults with the book other than finding it very slow. The beginning felt painful and the middle was okay until I reach the last fourth of the book. Once it got to the last fourth I was able to get into the book and feel attached to the characters. If the book moved a little faster, it could have been a five star book.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

3 out of 5 stars.

Quick Book Review: The Shadow (The Florentine #2) by Sylvain Reynard

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Photo via Goodreads.

 

Sylvain Reynard has another incredible novel in The Shadow.

This is the sequel to The Raven, and it doesn’t disappoint. While this novel doesn’t seem to move as fast as the first one, it is still delicious and intriguing.

I liked this novel, but I didn’t exactly love it. Yes, I was obsessed with knowing what would happen with the characters but I felt like it was missing something. There was a good amount of romance in it, and the action lacked a little. I felt like this book was more of a set up, since it explained a lot of the vampire politics involved in the story.

This series does have at least one more book (I heard a rumour it was two) so this book ended at the perfect little cliffhanger. It wasn’t a cliffhanger that left me angry at Sylvain for making me wait, but it was just enough – leaving me desperate for the next book but willing to wait.

Overall, I did enjoy this book! The first book was so incredible (and so was the Gabriel’s series) that I had really high expectations for this book, perhaps too high.

Four out of five stars. I can’t wait for the next book, I want it now!

Quick Book Review: The Darby Shaw Chronicles (Books 1-3) by Liberty Speidel

The Darby Shaw Chronicles was a great mystery read with just a pinch of fantasy/supernatural!

At first I wasn’t super hooked into this book – I didn’t really know what I was getting into. It was a detective/crime story, but then suddenly the main character had supernatural powers. In the beginning it seems like some cheesey plot line just to get more people to the book, but once you actually get into the novel (about half way through the first book) you realize how genius the idea actually is.

As cheesey as it seems when the supernatural reveal happens in the beginning, Liberty Speidel then does an excellent job expanding the story and eventually series.

I did love these books. Each book got better, and they left me wanting a fourth one! Liberty builds her characters so you feel for them, but are also very cautious. With all the politics involved in both crime and supernatural possibilities, I felt very informed and not confused at any time during the books.

I would definitely suggest this book to anyone looking for a crime or supernatural novel. It’s the perfect mix of both, with the tiniest splash of romance in there.

If there is anything Liberty Speidel could have worked on, it would be the supernatural reveal. I did find it cheesey compared to the rest of the book, which seems to be siding on serious half the time and light hearted the other. But, this wasn’t a major issue, it just seemed like a change in tone compared to the rest of the books.

Four out of five stars. I can’t wait for the next book!

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

Check them out on:
Goodreads – Darby Shaw
Amazon.ca – Darby Shaw #1-3
Amazon.com – Darby Shaw #1-3

Jewell by Tina DeSalvo

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Photo gallery from Goodreads.

 

Jewell by Tina DeSalvo was a cute, romance-mystery mix!

This book has a very slow start, and at first seems rather boring. Tina DeSalvo introduces the book well, but it drags on quite a bit. Once you get about 1/4th into the novel, it suddenly speeds up and gets exciting – there’s mystery, there’s potential romance, there’s comedy! It’s such a great book! You just have to get through the first little bit of the book and suddenly it’s fantastic!

It’s not your typical romance book – the main characters have to build their relationship over the course of the book, and they do. They also have to deal with realistic situations – Jewell’s professional reputation is being threatened, her Grandmother has Alzheimer’s, and then there is family drama to deal with.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. Despite the slow start, the book is beautifully written! There’s the perfect mix of mystery, drama, comedy and romance all wrapped into this book!

Four out of five stars – due to the slow start.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

Book Review: The Trap by Melanie Raabe

Book Review:
Title: The Trap – English Edition
Author: Melanie Raabe
Date Read: August 11th-September 1st, 2016
Date Reviewed: September 4th, 2016

 

Introduction: I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads. When I got the book, and read the back cover, I was more than impressed and pushed it to the front of my book review pile. While it took me a while to get to it, I wish I would have gotten to it sooner! This book is part of my top books, and I’m lending it out to my friends so they get introduced to this wonderful story by Melanie Raabe!

Quick Summary: Linda Conrads has been locked up in her house for 11 years. And not because she’s forced to, she wants to. She witnessed a horrible murder of her younger sister Anna many years ago, and she can’t bear to go out to the world anymore. Her small world suddenly turns upside down when she decides to write a novel about the murder and try to discover who the murderer is…

*SPOILERS PAST THIS POINT* You’ve been warned.

Evaluations: I LOVED this book. I was hooked at every word and it only took me so long to read it because I had exams and work. If I would have had it my way, I would have sat down one day and binge read it. I found myself doing that when I finally had the time! This book is totally worth it if you can get your hands on it. It’s a murder-mystery thriller that leaves you thinking the entire time. It’s not a fast moving novel, but if you look a good thriller, it’ll keep you hooked at every word.

Plot: Linda Conrads saw the murderer of her little sister Anna, and now she saw him again. After putting the pen to paper and writing another novel, since she is in fact an award winning novelist, she is determined to find him. When she gets an interview with this man, she learns that her view of the murder might be fiction…and she might be the murderer. This drives her mad, and she becomes even more determined to find out who murdered her sister, to finally put her theories to rest.

Characters: Linda Conrads is a bit of a shut in, and this makes her even more interesting. She’s been stuck in her house for 11 years, and might be a little bit crazy. She’s determined to find out what happened to her sister, and this seems to drive her mad. Her reliability is questioned many times during the novel, and it makes the reader really think about what could have happened. Is our narrator telling the truth? Or is she just to crazy to know the truth? She was well written, and I’m incredibly impressed with her.
The background characters are also fleshed out, even though they are present to a bare minimum. The story is focused on Linda, but these characters become important along the way. Paying attention to them is important! They all play a part.

Themes/Creativity: The theme of this story seemed to be fact vs fiction. Do we honestly remember everything perfectly? As a witness, are we reliable?
For Creativity – this book was on point! I thoroughly enjoyed this tale, since I have never read a book like this before. Even with all the mysteries and thrillers I have picked up, this story was in it’s own category. It has raised the stakes for other novels, and I loved every second of it!

Uniqueness: This book was in a club all on it’s own. While I’m sure there are other novels out there like this, I have yet to encounter something was wickedly thrilling as this novel. I would definitely pick this book up again to see if I missed anything along the way! It’s a unique view on the typical story – you don’t usually see the close relative trying to solve the murder, and they might be the possible suspect.

Strengths: The uniqueness of the novel and the situations, alongside the book inside the book, made this book terribly addicting on my end. I felt having Linda as an author, and explaining her view not only through her experiences but through her novel left me thinking and trying to pick apart the mystery even more. I enjoyed the unique take – Melanie Raabe has won me over with this book.

Weaknesses: The book is a slow building novel. I usually hate slow moving novels, but this novel is quite short and it unique. I would have loved this book not to drone on and on before the action starts, but the book was still great regardless!

Score: 5/5
This book is unique, and while it was slow I don’t think that should ruin the score. It gave all the information you needed to try to solve the mystery yourself. Everything seemed to have a purpose.

Recommendations: I would love Melanie Raabe to work on a faster pace. This book left me wishing it moved faster, since it was so incredibly great! I can see some people putting the book down because of how slow it moves, and I really hope that doesn’t happen! This translation is incredible, and deserves it’s glory!

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

Check this book out on:
Goodreads – The Trap
Amazon.ca – The Trap
Amazon.com – The Trap