Posted in Book Reviews

Appetizers of the Gods

Goodreads rating: 4 stars

Narrator/Performance Rating: 5 stars

I was given this book by the author through AudiobookBlast dot com in exchange for my honest review.

This book went kind of slow at the beginning and I found myself questioning where it was even going. After the four leprechaun brothers arrived at Colin’s home, the story picked up pace and I found myself laughing and enjoying the book.

This book is uniquely original and can get through it pretty quick. I found each of the 4 brothers to be enjoyable and I loved when they were interacting in the story. I liked how each character brought something to the overall plot.

Posted in Book Reviews

Bull Sharks vs The City of Chicago

Goodreads Rating: 5 stars

I received a copy of this Audiobook through Audiobook blast dot com from the author in exchange for my honest review.

I really like sonicmovies now. I think this is my third reviewing for the author and I have found that it is entertaining and his short stories are packed with excitement.

I like the humor he puts into each of his stories. I found myself laughing in Bull Sharks vs. The City of Chicago. I am really starting to feel sorry for Chicago….they seem to get hit a lot…Zombies….bull sharks…they can’t win 🙂

I look forward to listening to more of Yancy’s work!

Posted in Book Reviews

Misunderstanding

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Misunderstanding by K Anderson Yancy

Goodreads Rating: 5 stars

Narrator rating: 5 stars

I received this book from the author/narrator through audiobook blast dot com in exchange for my honest review.

The music is loud with audible but it’s supposed to be clear in the original format. It is still enjoyable to listen too, there is just some playback noise.

In this story there is what is called a proxy father and a proxy father is sent to married couples by the government when after 5 years the couple does not or cannot conceive a child. This couple is waiting for their proxy father to arrive when a knock at the door produces a baby photographer. You can see where this is going? The photographer and the wife have a conversation but the whole time are on two different topics. The baby photographer talks about his success rates for his photo sessions while the woman assumes he is talking about all the ways he has helped women conceive.

I laughed the whole time I listened. I have quite a few of this author’s audio productions and I have enjoyed them immensely. They are short, sweet and to the point.

Posted in Book Reviews

Daughters of Men Blog Tour

daughters of men

Daughters of Men

by A.R. Draeger

published April 5, 2015

Devastated by the loss of her son, Rebecca is struggling to salvage her marriage to Jacob, a cold and detached pastor. When he goes on a men’s hunting retreat and does not return on time, Rebecca fears the worst. Jacob arrives three days late, citing bad weather and poor cell service as the reasons none of the men called home. Jacob appears healthy, but Rebecca is concerned with the deep gashes on his arms and is even more alarmed when he tells her that he stitched them himself. As the weeks pass, Rebecca begins to wonder what happened in the mountains. Jacob is not the same man he was before. While she is relieved he is no longer detached, she cannot comprehend why he’s become so flirtatious, so sexually aggressive. So obsessive. Jacob’s odd behavior mounts, and the actions of the men who joined Jacob on the retreat grow more and more strange, convincing Rebecca that the men who came home are not the men who left. Who are these pretenders… and what have they done with her husband?

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Daughters of Men is the second book published by A.R. Draeger. I received this book for my honest review and to participate in this blog tour. My overall rating for this book is 4 stars.

A.R. Draeger’s writing style is hauntingly beautiful. I fell in love with her flow in Of Ocean and Ash a while back, and Daughters of Men is no different. The writing is very fluid, and smooth like creamy milk chocolate (seriously). It just works. You don’t get that very often from big named authors, and to find it in an independent author is something very special and I am very glad to have that chance to experience it.

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect with this story. From the synopsis, it is known that a group of church men go off on a camping trip and come back different, but there is nothing explaining how they are different really. What makes them different? I was pleasantly surprised at what that difference was (and for spoilers sake, I won’t give it away). It was not how other stories in the same subject are usually projected at being. These men came back very creepy, and I believe I would respond the same as Rebecca had my Eric came back the same way…that or I would have just left the moment I saw that change in the bathroom. I would have just rand out the door and fled until my gas ran out and then filled up the tank and kept on going.

Daughters of Men is a fairly quick read. It starts out a little slow, but picks up pace once the men go off on their trip. There is definitely a lot of death in this book, so don’t get too attached to any of the characters.

My one major flaw with the book was that I got really confused at the end, I am still not really sure what the heck was going on to be entirely honest. I finished this book on Monday, November 2nd, so I have taken a few days to really think and process the information, but I still am not entirely sure what I was reading. I can’t and won’t say it was because it was unclear, it may just be because I am really exhausted, and there is a lot going on in my life, but I just didn’t follow the last chapter.

All in all, it is worth the read. I appreciate the opportunity to participate in this blog tour for Amber. I can’t wait to read other books of hers. If you are interested in other books of hers, check out my posting for the blog tour Of Ocean and Ash.

 

 

Amber DraegerABOUT THE AUTHOR

A.R. (Amber) Draeger resides in rural Texas with her husband, Josh, and son, Logan. When not writing or reading, she is watching reality TV shows or tromping through the nearby woods.

Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 

 

 

Sad woman in a forest. Loneliness and melancholy concept

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Daughters of Men by A.R. Draeger (ebook + paperback)
Of Ocean and Ash by A.R. Draeger (ebook + paperback)
Immersed by Katie Hayoz (ebook)
Untethered by Katie Hayoz (ebook)
Sanguinary by Margo Bond Collins (ebook)
Waking up Dead by Margo Bond Collins (ebook)

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Posted in Book Reviews

The Zombie Apocalypse & The Chicago Winter

Goodreads Rating: 4 stars

Narrator Rating: 4 stars

Written and Performed by K. Anderson Yancy

I received this Audiobook from Audiobook Blast (dot) Com for my honest review. I did not pay for the book nor was my opinion solicited or paid for in anyway. This review is my own

I have never heard of K. Anderson Yancy, and I have not had much experience listening to SonicMovies style audiobook, meaning that it is meant to sound like one of those old school, Radio story productions when families sat around the old fashioned radio listening because there was no tv yet. I found myself giggling a few times. The sound effects are pretty great and I like how it is relatable even though it is Zombies. Yancy used current pop culture in the production which gave it that extra kick of funny.

It is definitely a different style, and I am not sure if it is something I could listen to all the time, but it made my work morning a bit better!

Posted in Book Reviews

White Trash Zombie Gone Wild

Goodreads Rating: 4 stars

Narrator Rating: 5 stars

I happened upon this series when I first started listening to Audible books. I have truly enjoyed each one and book 5 is no different!

This particular installment really focuses on Angel’s addiction problems. I like that the whole book really faces on her own struggles when she was still human and how she still faces them in her zombie form. I know that some reviews on Goodreads really speak negatively about this, but I like that it shows how she grows as a person, I mean zombie.

I also like the amount of plot twists this story contained!!!! Dang! Some of them I did not see coming!!! Of course, as always, Angel’s dad is one of my favorite characters in the book.

As far as narration goes, the reason I listen to this book over reading, Allison McLemore is such a wonderful narrator!! She truly brings this story to life. I love her southern, white trashy, twang she gives Angel. All of her voices really make each character in the book fantastic. I am not sure I would have enjoyed the story as much if I would have read it.

Here is a really horrible picture of me (I have lost 25 pounds since this photo was taken!) with Diana Rowland at the RT Booklovers Book Convention in Dallas, Texas back in May of this year!! She hid the entire week and my mom found her during the big book signing event at the end of the week!!

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Posted in Book Reviews

Jolly Roger

Goodreads Rating: 4 stars

Narrator Rating: 5 stars

I received this book from Audiobook Blast (dot) com for my honest review.

I listened to this book this morning getting ready for work. It was entertaining. I found myself laughing out loud in various parts of the story. I believe the concept of the story was interesting and not one I have really listened to or read before. I like the idea of Agents going back in time to prevent the Rogue Agent Roger Turnbuckle from altering the future by providing pirates with automatic weapons of the future. My favorite character was Gus McAbee as the parrot.

Nicholas Patrella as the narrator was very entertaining. I believe he is what made this story vibrant and alive. I really enjoyed his voice and narration style.

Posted in Book Reviews

Crane

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Overall Rating: 4.75

Goodreads Rating: 5

Rating Breakdown:

  1. Originality: 5
    1. Genre based ratings:
      1. Fantasy: 5
      2. Paranormal: 5
      3. Horror: 3
      4. Retellings: 5
  2. Character Development: 5
  3. Plot: 5
  4. Narration:  5

I received this audiobook from Audiobook Blast (dot) com for free in exchange for my honest review. This review is my own opinion, I have not been paid or bribed or blackmailed into giving it.

I want to point out, if this is the first review you have ever read of mine, that I do not write *book reports*. I feel that you can read the synopsis of the book on Goodreads, Amazon or Audible, and get a really good idea of what the book is about. My reviews are my opinions, thoughts and feelings, what I liked and what I disliked about the book, or in case of audiobooks, about the narration as well. I try not to give away spoilers, but in some cases, I can’t always help it. If I am going to give a spoiler, I try to state that I will give a spoiler. I do try to give clear cut examples when necessary when explaining my opinions or thoughts.

Originality:

Where do I even start in this review? It has been a while that I listened to a book that was so captivating in a way that had me completely enamoured that I wanted to listen to it until I was finished. In one sitting. Whether I was working or not, cooking dinner, washing dishes, cleaning my house. It did not matter.

Stacey Rourke writes beautifully. I liked that it bounced from past, with Ichabod,  to present, with his heir, Ireland. At first, the bouncing back and forth threw me off, but as the plot kept thickening, it began to make sense. Rourke takes the story we all know and creates this magnificent retelling into events that relates it to Ichabod’s heir who happens to end up in Sleepy Hollow after a miserable break up. As Ichabod’s story’s timeline continues, it relates Ireland’s present storyline, and then the big  AH-HA! moment occurs, and I felt like I couldn’t listen fast enough!

As far as where it lines up with other books in the same genre, this is a great retelling. I think, in my opinion, you shouldn’t mess with a classic, because it is a classic for a reason. Rourke did something absolutely amazing with Crane, however, so I had to give it a 5 star rating in the retelling section of my rating breakdown (above). Another top rating for Goodreads is that it is classified as horror, and I cannot fully see why. Yes, I guess in some aspects I can understand why it would be horrorish, but to be a “top” genre listing, I would have expected more “horror”. There was really only ONE big scene that was “gruesome”, even though there are multiple deaths/murders in the book (without giving anything away, as a reader/audience member, you are only present truly for two of the deadly events, but you only know who the Headless Horseman/Haitian is for one of them). I just dont classify that as “horror.” When I think “horror,” I think early Anita Blake Vampire Hunter by Laurell K Hamilton that caused me to lack sleep at night. Or, in it’s day, H.P. Lovecraft stories. I felt the death in this book was just as exciting as the rest of the story, and when the audience finds out the AH-HA, “whodunnit” moment, it becomes that more exhilarating, because, me personally, I didn’t expect it or see it coming.  In line with other fantasy and paranormal genres, Crane has enough fantasy and paranormal aspects to keep the reader enticed and enjoy and it deserves a 5 star rating.

Character:

I think there was excellent character development throughout the entire story. Each character had their own weaknesses and growth. Ireland went through a horrible breakup, in many books these days, a 24 year old female would have sulked around feeling sorry for herself, but not Ireland. Ireland Crane got herself a new ‘do, a kickass new tattoo, a new job, moved to a new town and started a new life. Of course, her life wasn’t exactly what she was expecting. The town was sketchy and deaths started happening the moment she got there, but hey, it sure beats the life she left! Right?! I mean, a couple days after she moves in, her landlord is beheaded, she throws coffee on a really hot “maintenance man”/property owner, nearly gets fired from her job, meets the Rip Van Winkle, discovers the Horseman is out to get her AND her cheating ex fiance hunts her down trying to convince her she needs to get over seeing him sexing up on some fluzey in their bed. Ireland Crane is pretty badass in my book. And I barely even scratched the surface. However, even if Ms. Crane is the main character, she is not the only character. I couldn’t really find any flaws in the the development or character sketches of any of them. I felt each character played their importance. There weren’t really any “unnecessary” characters or character interactions.

Plot:

Crane starts out on the ground running. I can’t really think of a time where it was ever slow. There wasn’t ever really a dull moment where I was looking at the watch, thinking to myself, when is this book going to be over? All I kept thinking is, “Is Raven on Audible yet?”. (Which it is not by the way….however, the first 3 books in this series is out in book format).  The entirety of this book keeps a pace that is steadily increasing and does not taper off. It ends exactly where you expect book to begin, with the Raven stating “Nevermore.” So I am extremely excited. It is one of those books I want everyone to read or listen to! I gave the plot line a 5 star rating for the fact that 1) I didn’t get bored. 2) It kept a fast past. 3) It not only keeps your interest, but it continually peaks your interest. Rourke keeps introducing characters, items, stories, etc that you want to find out more about. 4). This book is not that long. For the audio version, it is 8 hours in length. I just listened to another audiobook that was the same length and it took me over a month to listen to. I finished it a couple of weeks ago, I am still not done with the review. I started this book and finished this book, within a couple of days (unfortunately, life happens sometimes and I can’t read or listen as much as I would like). I finished the book about 10 minutes ago and this review is almost finished. That is how much I enjoyed this book. If an 8 hour book takes me 30+ days to listen to and another 2-3 weeks to attempt to finish a review, then it probably isn’t going to have a high rating, but if an 8 hour book takes me a couple of days, and I finish the review the exact same day I finish listening? Then I probably absolutely loved it.  🙂 That is a good plot line if you ask me. An author that can keep you that engrossed in a story, is worth a listen or read.

Narrator:

I fell in love with Karen Krause. This was my first book of hers, and I do hope it is not my last. She brought every character to life. She has a true talent for voices. Each one was significantly different, that you would think it was an “all cast” production. She delivers each snarky punch line to it’s fullest extent. I loved her so much, I told her on twitter, just so she knows. I appreciate that Mrs. Krause was kind enough to provide this audiobook for free.  I look forward to the remainder of this series, and I may need to go hunt down other books she has been a part of bringing to life!

Overall:

Finally, my last words that I will leave with you. I know this review seems weird, compared to some of my others that I have written in the past, but I just don’t want to give anything away. The Headless Horseman has really never been one of my favorite stories. Truly. I remember seeing the cartoons when I was younger, and I am familiar with the story. But it was never my favorite. I haven’t even seen the Johnny Depp version (which, by the way, I got a chuckle out of the reference in Crane). Ms. Rourke has made me want to give the Horseman a fair chance. She made me want to get to know Ichabod and Katrina the same way she has allowed me to get to  know and love Ireland and Noah. So that has to say something, right? Also, the covers of these books are GORGEOUS!!!!!

Posted in Book Reviews

The Cat’s Guide to Human Behavior

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Goodreads Rating: 5 stars

Narrator: 5 stars

I received this book from audiobook blast (dot) com in exchange for my honest review.

I found this book to be very entertaining. I do not own cats, but I have friends that have cats and it made me giggle the whole way through. This book honestly reminded me of my Scottish Terrier..they have very similar personality characteristics!

This was a short quick listen. The author narrates the book in a very entertaining manner that keeps you listening. I look forward to listening to more of her books!

Posted in Book Reviews

Of Ocean and Ash Blog Tour

 

 

Of Ocean and Ash

 

by A.R. Draeger

 

Series: Falling In Deep, #3

 

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Cover DesignerQuirky-Bird

 

Release Date: June 9, 2015

 

 

Of Ocean…

Cast into the sea at birth, human-born Ia found her adoptive family among the merfolk. While her underwater upbringing was peaceful, Ia’s blood-heritage and the strict societal rules of the merpeople lead her to wonder of the world above the waves.

And Ash…

When a storm lands Ia ashore, she discovers her body has transformed into the human she would have been. Taken in as property by a callous plantation owner, Ia works alongside the slaves until she can make her way back to the water. There is nothing Ia wants more than to go home, that is, until she meets a handsome, troubled man named Matthias, who has a touch that can be as kind as his tongue is harsh.

Torn between two very different lives, Ia must choose – stay in his world and risk her life for a love untested, or return to the familiar arms of the underwater world that raised her and risk losing what may be the greatest love she will ever know.

Will Ia’s choice lead to happiness or her destruction?

 

 

 

Goodreads rating: 5 stars

I was given a copy of this book for my honest review, I was not paid for my review or my thoughts. These are my own.

I have to admit, I have been excited and nervous to review a book of someone I know, someone I communicate with. Granted, we are not best friends, we do not hang out on weekends or go have coffee and talk about recent trips and adventures, we do talk. Her and my mom talk. However, even though I know her, my rating still stands at 5 stars because I am here to rate her book and not her as a person (and she is pretty damn cool in my opinion 😉 ).

First, the writing is amazing and very fluid, the story has moved a long very quickly. Every aspect of this story flows together in one smooth motion, like spreading rich, creamy peanut butter on a piece of freshly baked bread. You become enamoured with Ia from the very beginning. You want her to succeed at becoming a Caller, but at the same time, you don’t want her to succeed because you want her to have the freedom to escape the likes of Ro. It is a historical romance piece, set during 1736 in the Caribbean. I believe the amount of research needed had to be immense to get the amount of detail for the different types of servitude (slavery, indentured etc). Reminds me of the picture Amber actually posted on her page, but I have seen other writers on my news feed posting lately:

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I like history, I like how it is explained in the context of the story, how it is explained to Ia, who does not understand or know the differences, because it shows that a lot of research was done to get it correct. I do not read a lot of historical romance often, and I like the paranormal and historical romance combination to create this piece.

My least favorite character is Ro. I would not want to be forced into Ia’s position where I would either have be Ro’s bride or have Ro force himself upon me and there be nothing anyone could do about it due to being a Lesser. The scene that Ia had witnessed at the beginning where Ro raped another Lesser was sad, and when Ro discovered that she did in fact see, he didn’t care and informed Ia that one way or another, she would be his.

One qualm I do have with the story, some terms I had to just kind of figure out. The mer-society Ia is a part of is interesting, and though some terms I could figure out on my own, such as Lesser, it would be nice for a small dictionary somewhere (maybe there is and I just didn’t know) where other terms would be. I gathered that a Caller would be similar to a Siren, maybe, because of my work and how much of it I have been doing on little food and sleep the past few days, I didn’t connect the dots right off on my own, but some of the roles in the mer-society, would be nice to be listed out.

I have been trying to decide my feelings on Mathias. He warns Ia of the dangers of Lord Malcom and other Overseers, but something inside me kept telling me to be mindful of him. Him being in a position of power is just as capable of hurting Ia. I feel too often, his moods are bipolar. I do like that he does care, and I can appreciate the risks he puts himself in by some of his actions. In the same respect, Ia does not fully comprehend the exact risk because she is not of land. He did grow on me, but even by the end, I still have mixed feelings with him. Men. Should have listened!

I wanted to cut Lord Malcolm. He was well written. If you want to hate a bad guy, he is written to be hated! As a reader, you wanted to kick him, cut him, punch him and come to Ia’s rescue every chance you get! (I won’t go into more because I do not want to give spoilers, but brace yourself, poor girl).

I have to admit, as I was reading, I often kept thinking of the Little Mermaid. Maybe, this is because it was my first mermaid story I read, but Ia reminded me of Ariel so often!! The first time she saw her legs after she was washed up on the shore after the storm, when she first saw a spoon to use for her soup before chores, and pretty much any other time she had any experience with a human object. I found myself hoping the entire story she would return to the ocean, even if there were aspects she did not like in being a mermaid. I know that is selfish of me. Ia was born crippled, and tossed into the ocean at birth by her father who would rather her die than try to raise her in this world as a cripple. When she was washed up on the shore, she lost her fins and gained her legs back, but they were crippled like she was at birth. Ia had to learn how to be human when she has never been human other than the few minutes when she came into existence.

In true form to my book reviews, I didn’t want to give away any spoilers, read the book. It is sooooo goood!!!! And it gets even better, like OMG amazing once it hits the climax!!! DO IT!

 

 

Click here to see all the stops on the Of Ocean and Ash Review Tour!

 

 

 

 Amazon US

 Amazon UK

Amazon CA

 Amazon AU

 

 

 

A.R. (Amber) Draeger resides in rural Texas with her husband, Josh, and son, Logan. When not writing or reading, she is watching reality TV shows or tromping through the nearby woods.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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