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review 2018-04-13 17:48
Charlie Cook's Favorite Book - Julia Donaldson,Axel Scheffler
For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle

Oh my gosh, this is such a creative idea of a book. While the book doesn't tell a fluid story, it is still very entertaining nevertheless. It is basically if Inception was a children's picture book. 

I love Julia Donaldson's books. They are always sure to delight.

Axel Scheffler did the illustrations for this book and I loved all of the possible references to the other books, such as the owl and squirrel from The Gruffalo and the frog from Room on the Broom. Some of these may be coincidences or just the way Scheffler draws various creatures, but it is still fun for children to point out the similarities. As always, the illustrations are very fun and detailed.

A great book that is very unique and entertaining. 
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review 2018-03-31 22:48
Don't Believe It
Don't Believe It - Charlie Donlea

Sidney Ryan has put together the most watched documentary in television history. The Girl of Sugar Beach is a true-life mystery that is running in real time. The audience finds out exactly what happened ten years ago in St. Lucia when an American woman was accused of murdering her American boyfriend. Is Grace Sebold guilty or did the police want everything tied up in a neat little package to avoid a drop in tourism and money? The audience seems to think Grace is innocent and it looks as if she's getting out of that St. Lucian prison soon. Sidney has been uncovering startling evidence, things that were overlooked during the original investigation. But as the television series races towards its final episodes, Sidney receives a letter saying she got it all wrong.

Charlie Donlea is one of those authors, for me, where I don't have to read the blurb because I already know it's going to be good. If you've read his last book you'll recognize some names in this one, which I liked. I liked the aspect of Sidney Ryan digging around to free those who were wrongly accused and airing Grace Sebold's story on tv in real time. I found it easy to envision a group of friends in St. Lucia for a wedding and then everything being torn apart and everyone having to go on with their lives in different ways. Some things were convenient and the ending was a little far-fetched but overall it's another solid and entertaining read from this author.

Thank you to Netgalley and Kensington for an ARC.

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text 2018-03-09 09:37
Tea's TBR Thursday - March 8, 2018
The Long Way Home - David Laskin
A Wrinkle in Time - Madeleine L'Engle
The Darkness Knows (Viv and Charlie Mystery) - Cheryl Honigford
Celtic Myth & Magick: Harness the Power of the Gods & Goddesses - Edain McCoy
I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life - Ed Yong
Mistress of Rome - Kate Quinn
The Finest Hours: The True Story of the U.S. Coast Guard's Most Daring Sea Rescue - Michael J. Tougias,Casey Sherman

*Bookish meme created by Moonlight Reader


Books added to my personal TBR:

1. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle (NOOK)

2. The Long Way Home by David Laskin (NOOK)

3. The Darkness Knows by Cheryl Honigford (NOOK)

4. Mistress of Rome (The Empress of Rome #1) by Kate Quinn


Books borrowed from the library:

1. Celtic Myth and Magick by Edain McCoy


Books put on hold at the library:

1. I Contain Multitudes by Ed Young

2. The Finest Hours by Casey Sherman and Michael J. Tougias


Books Read:

1. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle (personal copy)

2. Danger in High Heels (High Heels #7) by Gemma Halliday (personal copy)

3. Deadly in High Heels (High Heels #9) by Gemma Halliday (personal copy)







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review 2018-02-24 04:21
The Wolf at the Door (Big Bad Wolf) - Ch... The Wolf at the Door (Big Bad Wolf) - Charlie Adhara

A former FBI agent is partnered with the enemy in this suspenseful male/male shifter romance from debut author Charlie Adhara Hunting for big bad wolves was never part of Agent Cooper Dayton’s plan, but a werewolf attack lands him in the carefully guarded Bureau of Special Investigations. A new case comes with a new partner: ruggedly sexy werewolf Oliver Park. Park is an agent of The Trust, a werewolf oversight organization working to ease escalating tensions with the BSI. But as far as Cooper’s concerned, it’s failing. As they investigate a series of mysterious deaths unlike anything they’ve seen, every bone in Cooper’s body is suspicious of his new partner—even when Park proves himself as competent as he is utterly captivating. When more people vanish, pressure to solve the case skyrockets. And though he’d resolved to keep things professional, Cooper’s friction with Park soon erupts…into a physical need that can’t be contained or controlled. But with a body count that’s rising by the day, werewolves and humans are in equal danger. If Cooper and Park don’t catch the killer soon, one—or both—of them could be the next to go. This book is approximately 90,000 words


Dear Charlie Adhara,

My friend Raine told me that she was going to be brave and try a new author and when Raine recommends books to me I listen, because our tastes tend to run very close to each other. I am so pleased that I now have a new author whose works I can look forward to. I love books about werewolves in theory, but same as it tends to be with BDSM themed books I rarely find the book about shifters that I enjoy. This one I enjoyed very much.

Beware though, that even though the narrative does give us the beginning of romance between two great guys, the focus of the story is on the mystery/suspense storyline which I thought was very well done. Do not get me wrong, for me the book had more than enough romance (and some great sex too). The men were very busy doing their jobs and I appreciated how the author made the romantic storyline believable for me by not making them forget about their jobs in favor of romance but I can see how it may not be enough for some readers.

In this world, the werewolves recently came out to some of the human world and in order to deal with the werewolves related crimes the BSI was formed where some former FBI agents were recruited and told the secret which they either encountered by accident, or for whatever other reason.

Of course not everybody amongst the werewolves was/is happy about even such limited coming out and tensions between werewolves and BSI are heating up for various reasons. To improve cooperation between werewolves and the rest of the human world ( that part of the world that knows about them anyway) our main characters are paired together as blurb tells you. They are paired together and sent to the town of Florence to investigate the series of murders that could have been done by werewolves.

Cooper was basically told that his regular partner is not going to be a part of this investigation and instead he gets himself a temporary new partner – a former university professor and now the agent of “Trust” Oliver Park. Of course Cooper is not happy with such development, but his Boss in BSI tells him basically to be on his best behavior and make it work.

The book is written from Cooper’s third person limited POV and he is the only one who tells the story for the reasons which are made clear perfectly well at the end of the book. We only see Oliver’s through Cooper’s eyes and I thought it was very well done; I loved how we got to know him through Cooper while Cooper was working through his missteps and some unintentional prejudices. Cooper honestly wanted to do good in his investigations and not target innocent people, but nobody is perfect and Cooper certainly had to learn/re –learn some stuff where werewolves were concerned.

And I just loved Cooper’s voice. The story was dealing with gruesome murders, so by and large this was not a humorous book, which made perfect sense considering the subject matter, but the author managed to insert some humorous touches and occasional sarcasm in his narrative.

“Rudi Abouesse stared at him from the open doorway. It was a toss-up whether her expression was more hostile or disbelieving. “Why aren’t you as sick of me as I am of you?” She looked over his shoulder. “You know, the good cop/ bad cop routine is usually more effective with two people.”"


As you can see the next couple of short quotes are more closely related to the romance storyline. Please note that when Cooper is thinking in these, he literally is stuck in the certain place and is waiting for Park to come and help him out. I did not find romantic comments inappropriate in this part of the narrative at all. I know opinions may differ.


“Stupid. Maybe he deserved to have someone drop a rock on his head and put him out of his misery. “C’mon, you bastard. Show me your super hearing. Asshole Park. Huge alpha Park. Big, strong, muscular Park. Amazing Ass Park. Pretty Eyes Park.”"


“But his surprise at the comment distracted him from the aching in his back for one or two precious milliseconds. Had Park checked him out? Was he interested in him sexually? Was this a reasonable time to be thinking about it? Probably not seemed to cover all three."

Romantic storyline does include some bickering between the men, but once again I thought the author kept it to the minimum and I also thought that while Cooper did occasionally go overboard, he learned throughout the story and he did not do it at the expense of the job. We do see him acknowledging that he trusted Park and was attracted to him as well.

I thought the mystery plot was *extremely* well done. I was very impressed by the final twist, because the author managed to came up with the scenario where Cooper being clueless till the very end about the main villain and his motives ( supposedly he did figure out another one a little bit prior to the big confrontation) made perfect sense and I would have even been upset if it did not happen. I am unable to explain it without any spoilers, dear readers.  Cooper even tries to get help before he goes to confront the villain whose identity he did figure out and I appreciated that after reading about so many characters in m/m mysteries just bravely and idiotically go to confront the villains all alone.  And  still asking for help does not help Cooper much!  You would have to read the book if you want to find out the meaning behind me being cryptic, but I loved the ending. I thought it was very cleverly done.

I am very much looking forward to the next book.

Grade: B+/A-

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review 2018-02-19 00:00
Heart2Heart: A Charity Anthology
Heart2Heart: A Charity Anthology - Jeffrey Archer,Chris Owen,William Sloane Kennedy,Alison Hendricks,Lily Morton,Poppy Dennison,Lucy Lennox,Charlie Cochet,A.E. Wasp,Hailey Turner,Ruthie Luhnow,Leslie Copeland Overall rating 4.5 rounded up to 5 Stars

The Magician and the Mortician 5 Stars
A.E. Wasp is one of my favorite authors and in this story she once again hits a grand slam!

The Professional Gamer and the Paranormal Photographer by Allison Hendricks 4.5 Stars
Coincidentally the book I just finished before this one was my first Allison Hendricks read. I really loved that one and feel the same way about this short story. Have to admit at the beginning I was kinda wondering how this pairing would work... but it did and very well!

The Assassin and the Dog Walker by Charlie Cochet 4.75 Stars
Prior to this story the only ones by Ms. Cochet that I had read were her North Pole City Tales, which I loved to death. This story is very different theme wise however it still has the amazing heart and incredible story-telling the other had. She had me by my heart and balls throughout this short story and the payoff at the end was awesome!

The Criminal and the Sommelier by Chris Owen 3 Stars
This is my least favorite story thus far... I thought that the chemistry between the 2 MCs was great and the story itself was very interesting. The deal breaker for me was how quickly Phillipe tossed out his issues with Angelo breaking the law so easily and quickly as if just becausae Angelo was sweet and charming that made him being a thief ok.

The Superhero and the NSA Agent by Hailey Turner 5 Stars
First time read of this author... gonna read a lot more of her work! This story was awesome! The verbal banter between the 2 MCs when they meet in the Emergency Room at Harbor/UCLA was so hot it was practically a sex scene. What they got up to after going back to Shane's condo makes this story the hottest thus far in this collection!

The Tattoo Artist and the Writer by Lily Morton 5 Stars
Another new author for me and another reallly awesome story. This one definitely had it scorching moments, but it gets the 5 stars for being the sweetest, most tender and most tear-inducing story. Noah and Sage are incredible!

The Uber Driver and The Phone Sex Operator by Lucy Lennox 4.5 Stars
Lucy Lennox is one of my top 5 fav gay romance authors so I had high expectations for this story. She certainly met and exceeded them! Travis and Azrael were so awesome and so very real. The sweetness and tenderness of this story made me feel all snuggley. And the hot parts... I'll just say they worked just as well!

The Baker and The Seal by May Archer 4.5 Stars
First time reading something by this author... not the last. This was likely the shortest work in the anthology but have to give kudos to her because it was also one of the best. Good things definitely can come in small packages!

The Event Planner and the Electrician by Poppy Dennison 4 Stars
First time to read something by Ms. Dennison, this was good as far as it went but I think it really needed to be just a bit longer to truely feel like a complete story. I liked the 2 MC's a lot, especially Harvey.

The Lawyer and the Lobsterman by Ruthie Luhnow 4 Stars
Sexy and sweet, but too short. So much potential here for exploration. I loved what there was of it. I am confused a bit cuz I would have thought that all authors participating in this would have been asked for approxiamately the same length to there stories. Yet some were much longer than others.

The Florist and The Lawyer by Sloane Kennedy 5 Stars
This is one of my most favorite stories in this anthology. It is sweet, tender and tear-inducing. I loved, loved, loved it!

Setup and Aftermath by ??? 4.5 stars
Really loved these sweet and sexy bookends of the anthology, whoever wrote this did a great job!
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