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review 2014-04-02 20:58
Awesome Historical Adventure
Clonmac's Bridge: an archeological mystery - Jeffrey Perren

An exciting adventure full of mystery, danger and history, Clonmac's Bridge takes us to several areas of the world, as an archaeologist fights to uncover the truth. 

I loved connecting with these characters, while experiencing their enthusiasm and passion for history. With the feisty and independent Mari, and the quirky, passionate Griffon, this story comes to life, and captures you completely. Their swirling relationship was sweet, and I loved the changes Mari went through, as she found a new level of independence from her past and her father.

Jeffrey Perren is a very talented author, easily taking his readers on grand adventures, while teaching them something along the way. This book is a wonderful example of his skills as a storyteller, writer, and history enthusiast. 

I would recommend this book to any fan of historical novels - if you think it sounds interesting, then I'm sure you'll enjoy it. I plan on reading it again, several times, and look forward to future books from Mr. Perren. 

*I was given an eCopy of this book, from the author, to read in exchange for an honest review. 

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review 2014-03-30 19:43
Good Young-Adult Coming-of-Age Drama
Twelve Steps - Veronica Bartles

Coming-of-age stories are usually full of character growth, and some youthful drama. This book certainly has both of those, centering around a young, somewhat naive sixteen year-old girl, who feels as though she's trapped in the shadow of her older sister.


I found this book to be full of ironies - many that are very realistic, and probably happen more than we realize. I don't want to give away spoilers, so I won't mention the ironies specifically, but I will say they made me laugh, and really showed the growth of several characters involved with this 12-step drama.


This book was very well written, and the characters were all very easy to connect with. They seemed completely realistic, and I clearly pictured the scenario laid out in this book. It probably happened in my high school, as well as most other schools. I enjoyed the ending, the setting, and the personal dynamics between all the teenagers finding their way through life and love.


For fans of realistic fiction and coming-of-age stories, this is a good one. I would recommend it, and will probably end up reading it again.


*I was given an eCopy of this book, from the author, to read in exchange for an honest review.


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review 2014-03-25 05:44
Good read - a bit too erotic...
Cup of Sugar - Karla Doyle

Romance, humor and an adorable dog - do you need much more to have a good story? This book is a deep comedic romance, full of holiday fun, a cute dog, and a couple who both have traumatic pasts.


Nia is a typical girly-girl, complete with emotional baggage and a love of all things pink. She's been hurt in her past, and hasn't been able to heal - she simply puts up walls as a defense to future pain and humiliation. At the moment, she is intensely hesitant of getting friendly with her incredibly attractive neighbor, Conn.


Conn has also been hurt in his past, although he's much less hesitant to be more intimate with Nia. In fact, he's tried everything he can think of to lure Nia to him. After months of trying various forms of bate, none of his tactics have worked, so he decides to take charge, and they both learn to trust again.


The main plot of this book is very interesting. The moral, message, and character growth are all wonderful to read about. What I didn't care for, was the strong and constant erotic theme. Unfortunately, I had no warning that this book was erotic, as it's simply listed as part one of a "Contemporary Romance" series. There is no warning or note about the graphic sex scenes.


That one element is my reason for taking a star off. Honestly, if it didn't have all that stuff in it, I would have given it a five star. It is a great story, with deep characters and lots of humor.


If you're alright with erotic stories, you'll most likely enjoy this book. If you're not comfortable with that sort of thing, you may want to pass this book by as a read, or be prepared to skip over several parts of the book, as I did. Overall, skipping the parts that made me uncomfortable made this book a good enough read, and is a series I'd be willing to keep reading.


*I was given an eBook copy of this book, from the author, to read in exchange for an honest review.


@Desert Rose Reviews


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review 2014-03-13 19:00
Wonderful, Surprising Story
Plagued: The Midamerica Zombie Half-Breed Experiment - Evan Ramspott

I haven't read many zombie stories, so I can't be certain if this book is original. It certainly seems like it to me though, and I am impressed!


With a world set several years after a zombie outbreak, we follow a young man searching for his sister. We learn about him and his shame-filled past, his family, and the state of America after a virus-like epidemic turned thousands of people into zombies. We learn what the government did about it, how the country is set up, and how the zombies are dealt with.


I was impressed with the cultural and environmental details the author had in the story, and the foundation he laid for this series. At the same time, I enjoyed the lack of details about small things, such as clothing color, and tedious details that don't really need to be explained. The author is a very good writer, in my opinion, and I enjoy his writing style.


The book flows quickly, painting a clear picture of the world around the characters, and the adventure they find themselves dropped into. There are several surprises, and I love the ending. I'm very excited to read the sequel, and certainly recommend this book to anyone who likes a good zombie story.


*I was given an eCopy of this book, from the author, to read in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2014-03-07 22:47
Deep, Dark, and Fantastic.
The Benighted (The Benighted Saga) - A.M. Dunnewin,Noah Schwinghamer

Even from the synopsis, it is obvious that this book will be a dark one, and probably very deep. The description of an innocent princess in prison, whipped and isolated, gives a pretty good feel for what this story holds. It is deep...it is dark...and it is fantastic.


Eloquent and well written, The Benighted offers a wonderful story, full of characters facing personal demons, as well as real life evils. It is easy to picture the world A.M. Dunnewin created, and the struggles the young Queen-to-be is faced with. The trauma she endures, both physically and mentally, is difficult to read about. In the end though, you feel as though you've grown right along side her, and want nothing more than to see her succeed, standing tall against the enemies she faces.


This isn't a book for the faint of heart. However, if you like books with real, honest pain and challenges to overcome, and see real amazing character and strength, you will enjoy this book. I would recommend it, and am looking forward to the rest of the series.


*I was given an eCopy of this book, from the author, to read in exchange for an honest review.

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