Saturday, April 19, 2014

Book Review of Blood and Sunlight: A Maryland Vampire Story by Jamie Wasserman


Melanie would love to believe in fairytales. She’d love, in fact, to believe in anything. The twenty-three-year-old college dropout is stuck — stuck in a dead-end waitress job, stuck in her hometown of Ellicott City, Maryland, and stuck with a boyfriend who likes to play dress-up as a vampire.

Vampires. Her world and her reality are turned upside down when she encounters the real thing. Along the way, she meets Lucas, the would-be vampire slayer, his father the sheriff, and ultimately the vampire himself. Melanie learns that fairytales can come true, and evil isn't always where you expect to find it.


Blood and Sunlight: A Maryland Vampire StoryBlood and Sunlight: A Maryland Vampire Story by Jamie Wasserman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I downloaded this book when I first bought my Kindle as a freebie, but hadn't read it until now. I am kicking myself, because I really enjoyed it!

Melanie is a character that I really liked. She is thoughtful, artistic and bored of playing "vampires" with her boyfriend, Bryan. But, she is also a bit of a carpet where her boyfriend is concerned - she lets him walk all over her, and he takes advantage of it. However, a fateful encounter will change her life forever.

I am a huge fan of vampire romances, but the blurb on this book caught my attention and this is not a romance as such. It is a fantastic mix of romance, thriller and horror. The story is set in the small town of Ellicott City, Maryland, where nothing much ever happens. However, there are things that live in shadows. The story is a roller coaster ride of danger and adventure that kept me hooked from the first page. The characters are all very lifelike. I thought Bryan was a jerk, and deserved his fate. I liked Lucas, but there is a surprise in store for the reader about this character. There are some serious twists and turns that I did not see coming, and I had a few OMG moments. The story is told as half fairy tale and half real story, which sort of reminded me of how "The Princess Bride" was told (there is no other similarity to that book besides that fact) and is mostly told through Melanie's point of view. The reader is also introduced to Keenan, a real vampire. His story is not exactly a happy one, but I liked him; he and Melanie make a great couple. The end of the book did not have a cliffhanger, but it did have a slight twist and it left me with a happy feeling.

Jamie Wasserman has written a fast paced, exciting roller coaster ride of a story that kept me undeniably entertained. I loved her writing style, which flowed wonderfully. I would definitely consider reading more of this author's work in the future.

I do not recommend this book to younger readers, or those of a nervous disposition, due to some violence. There are scenes of a sexual nature too, but they are not as explicit as some books I have read. However, I highly recommend this book if you love paranormal romance, thriller or horror genres. - Lynn Worton

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Monday, April 14, 2014

Book Review of Assassin's Curse (The Witch Stone Prophecy #1) by Debra L. Martin and David W. Small


Disclaimer: This book is about assassins and contains violent scenes appropriate for the story.

When elite assassin Jeda received his ass
ignment to kill a witch and deliver her twin daughters to the Countess of Berkshire, he had no idea it would be his last. The witch stuns him with an elemental blast, but not before he's able to throw his knife. When Jeda regains consciousness, the dying witch is performing a compelling spell between him and her twin daughters. Now bonded to the girls, Jeda's old life is forfeit. His only thought is to take the girls and run as far away as he can. He has no idea that the twins are the ones spoken of in the long-lost prophecy of The Witch Stone. Forces are gathering: the white witches want to teach them; the Countess wants her grandchildren back, and the guild has sent their best assassin to bring Jeda back, dead or alive.

Jeda must use all of his assassin skills to stay one step ahead of them all, but will it be enough to save himself and keep the children of prophecy alive?

Assassin's Curse is ~98,000 words (392 pages in print) 


Assassin's Curse (The Witch Stone Prophecy, #1)Assassin's Curse by Debra L. Martin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

This is the first book in The Witch Stone Prophecy series. I loved it!

Jeda is an assassin, trained in the art of stealth and death from being a young boy. He is extremely efficient and dangerous. Sent on a mission, he doesn't realise how quickly fate will change his life forever! I really liked this character. I don't normally empathize with killers, but Jeda is a product of a harsh environment and is really a scared and lonely boy underneath his tough exterior.

I love fantasy novels, but I was a bit unsure of this one at first. I wasn't sure if I would enjoy a story about an assassin, but as I started to read this story, I was completely swept away. The story is told from several points of view, which is quite interesting, as each character has their own story to tell. Set over a 10 year period, the reader gets to follow the growth of the characters and experience the changes within the various lives as they occur. The two girls, Kala and Kara, grow up with a father who loves them and teaches them how to be just as skilled with the blade as he is, but they are also very powerful witches. However, they are being hunted, and the assassin that has been sent to track them is not as nice as Jeda. Mave has no conscience and is a cold and deadly killer, who will stop at nothing to get to Jeda and the girls.
The story has several twists and turns, some of which surprised me and I never saw coming! The fight scenes are described with amazing detail and are definitely intense! There is also a lot of violence, including abuse and mutilation, which may be upsetting to some readers. The ending left a bit of a chill climbing my spine, and made me wonder what is in store for Jeda, Kala and Kara in their future. I am looking forward to reading the next book in the series to find out.

The authors' Debra L. Martin and David W. Small have written a fantastic fantasy novel full of danger and adventure. The story was fast paced without being rushed, and flowed beautifully from beginning to end.

Due to the violence, I do not recommend this book to younger readers. However, I highly recommend this book if you love action, adventure, thriller or fantasy genres. - Lynn Worton

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Sunday, April 13, 2014

Book/Audio Review of Honor of the Tome (First book in the Dragon Keepers series) by Bruce Goldwell


Book One of the Dragon Keepers Series
Reading Level: Young Readers


THE DRAGON KEEPERS for centuries were the custodians and caretakers of the most prestigious and elite species of animal in the known universe ... Dragons.

In Book I, Merlin becomes an official Dragon Keeper and is given the responsibility of caring for Dracon, a newborn and son of the mightiest dragon on the earth, Merlineld.

Merlin is also entrusted with the care of the Book of Dragons called the Draconic Tome. The Tome is a history of the dragons since he beginning of time. It is a key to time itself and a gateway to other worlds in the Universe.

Kids, teens and adults can all take part in this fantasy adventure of Merlin the Magician. Merlin is 13 years old in Book I and will continue to age and grow as the series of books unfolds.

Merlin learns wisdom and grows in character and strength so that when the day of his destiny comes, he will become the wisest and most powerful wizard to ever live. 


Honor of the Tome (First book in the Dragon Keepers series)Honor of the Tome by Bruce Goldwell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received a complimentary copy of this story in audio format from the author.

This is the first book in the Dragon Keeper series for young readers aged 8 to 15. I loved it!

Merlin is a young boy with an important mission - to become a Dragon Keeper and learn to be a wizard. He has the important responsibility to train a new born Dragon called Dracon. I liked this character a lot. He is eager, inquisitive and determined to succeed.

This is a fantastic fantasy novel for children. There is adventure with Dragons and Elfins, but there is also danger in the form of Lady Oer. She is a very powerful witch, but she wants more power and is determined to get it from the dragons. She is not a very nice lady, and has become very adept at using the black arts to get what she wants.
This story is narrated by Aaron Holbrook. I found I liked the different voices used to dramatize the different characters, but felt that the narrator read the story too quickly, and this gave it a rushed feeling. I had a hard time keeping up, and felt like shouting at the narrator to take a breath! It is hard reading out loud and keeping the story exciting enough for young readers (I should know, as I have read lots of stories to my nephews over the years). However, rushing through it without taking a pause for a breath, or even for an effect, doesn't give the listener a chance to absorb the story properly. The story itself was exciting, so I would consider reading this in print format at my own pace. Luckily, the author very kindly gave me a print copy to read at my leisure too, and I will do so when I have a chance to. The ending of the story has a surprising twist that left me wanting to know what's going to happen next!

Bruce Goldwell has written a fabulous fantasy with some amazing characters, including my all time favourites - dragons. He has a vivid imagination and his writing style (narrator not withstanding) was fast paced enough to keep me engaged. I am looking forward to reading the other two books in the trilogy.

I highly recommend this book to both boys and girls between the ages of 5 to 7 as a bedtime story, 8 to 15 year old's (depending on reading ability) on their own and adults who love reading younger adult novels or fantasy stories with dragons. - Lynn Worton

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Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Summers Love by Stu Summers.

Click on the pic to get your fresh new copy from Amazon

So I have a ton of stuff that makes me want to run to the hills once I see certain words in a blurb. One of them is funny, humor, hilarious etc. So when I was asked to review a romance…one more of those words where I wanna run. I figured ok. So ignore the romance and any attempts of humor for my own sanity. That makes it way better. For me that is. 
Then I started the book. And the romance kicked in really fast in the story. The romance was not bad and got me engrossed in the lives of the two main protagonists lives. Ok so I get saying that the romance got me engrossed after trying to ignore the romance might be weird… thing is….the romance was really good. It had all the expected tension and we have two very likeable main protagonists. 

But on the way to get to the romance I hit the humor. And it had me in stitches. Certain parts literally had me laughing out loud. And had me tell friends, listen to this….lol. That my friends is why the words humor etc in a blurb makes me want to run to the hills. Few authors can actually ever pull it off. This book however is not misrepresented in its blurb. 

The humor is brilliant, the world building is well done. The reference to Christian literature is never derogative and adds loads to the theme of the book which as it turns out is the true definition of love. Pure love not only romantic love. This book is a brilliant, really fast read and one that I will recommend to all that love humor, romance and Christian literature in general. 



Kitty Genovese: A True ..By Catherine Pelon narrated by Dina Pearlman. An audible review

Kitty Genovese: A True ..By Catherine Pelon narrated by Dina Pearlman.

A research, crime narration of the true story of the murder of Kitty Genovese this book was fascinating even though a lot of repetition was present due to the nature of the story line. The book chronicles the Kitty Genovese case from start to finish. Detailing her life and personality to a degree. Focusing on her murder and the complete disdain people in the neighborhood showed when she was murdered in front of their eyes. 

I loved the fact that 911 was a result of this murder and how it was dealt with. The psychological research that went into to disinterested bystander etc kept me riveted. Like I said, this is not a novel. It is a chronological look at as many facets as the author could regarding Kitty's life. 

With this type of journalism repetition to prove a point etc or to go from hearsay to semi-proven fact is a given and it does get to be a bit much but I understood the reasoning behind it and if true life stories is your cup of tea then I am sure you will really enjoy this book and the look into the reasoning behind events. 


The Rules by Mark Troy and audible review

The Rules by Mark Troy narrated by Julie Hoverson.

Ok, so the more I read or listen to books with the double tap horror / surprise endings the less I personally like it.  This is a short read at a bit over an hour and although the narrator did a very good job with the main protagonists voice and even to a degree with the second main protagonists she does not have the range to pull off more voices and a lot of the story got lost due to my irritation with the narrators inability to make the surprise guest to the house sound anything else other than a person not good at imitating voices.  Then the surprise double horror tap ending showing nothing is as it appears…the first such a surprise would have done fine.  

The second one simply annoyed.  Well it annoyed me personally.  I would have preferred if these double tap endings were replaced by a truly surprising twist.


Audible review of Blue Ink by Nancy Fulda

Click on the pic to go to audible.

Blue Ink: A short story  by Nancy Fulda narrated by J.R Mangels

A short story with heart. 

This short story on audible was a surprise.  I did not know how well a short story would do on audible so when I started with this 20 min listen I was surprised at how well the short story is fitted to audible.

The story, of a boy who wants to make sure his clone is happy is far deeper than I expected from such a short short.  It's implication on our world view etc is quite something and the author and the narrator made every offer to make the story come to life.



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