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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-10-13 03:56
What Lies Between
What Lies Between - B.N. Toler

My reviews are honest & they contain spoilers. For more, visit:


What Lies Between is book 2 of B.N. Toler’s Where One Goes series; one that was most anticipated by many of us who loved book 1, Where One Goes. It was one of my favorite reads of 2015 and a 5 stars at that. B.N. Toler was a new to me author and she blew my mind with her storytelling. I was pretty sad that there won’t be a sequel to the story when it felt like it needed a one badly. In that sense, this is a very lovely surprise that I didn’t expect to see but was extremely happy nonetheless to see it becoming a reality. 

As usual with my reviews, I’ll begin with a bit of backstory. Where One Goes is narrated from multiple first POVs of the main protagonists; 3 of them. But it begins with Charlotte, our h, trying to help out one last soul before she became of them. Charlotte had a lovely childhood until a few years ago when a tragic accident that changed everything. One moment of impulsive decision took the life of her elder brother Axel and left her badly injured. As she was recovering from her near fatal injury, Charlotte found out the most astonishing thing that had ever happened to her!  She could see spirits; souls in limbo that needed help in crossing over. Since she wasn’t used to it, Charlotte needed help alongside the love and support of her parents in gradually becoming used to with her new ‘gift’. However, her strictly religious parents couldn’t connect with her ‘issues’, thinking she’s become mentally unstable and their relationship deteriorated to a point that she was told simply to leave. Just go away , was all she got. Ever since then Charlotte has been on her own, trying to eke out a life herself and doing what she was meant to be doing; helping out souls that needed her help.

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review 2018-10-11 03:09
Things get Intense in the Ongoing Conflict between The Faceless Man and The Folly.
Lies Sleeping - Ben Aaronovitch

I've got to say, I'd much rather be talking about this book in detail with someone else who had read the series than talking about it in spoiler-free form, so much of what I feel strongest about with this book cannot be discussed. Aaronovitch has outdone himself this time -- it's the best book of the series thus far, and that's no mean feat.

 

It's easy -- far too easy -- when thinking about this series to think of the lighter aspects -- the humor, the heart, Peter's growing pains, the snark, the pop culture references, and whatnot. That's typically where my mind goes, anyway. But time after time, when picking up the latest novel, or even rereading one, I'm struck by how carefully written, how detailed everything is, how layered the text is -- and I feel bad for underestimating Aaronovitch. Not that I have anything against breezy, jokey prose -- but there are differences. Nor am I saying these books are drudgery -- at all -- the stories are fun, the voice is strong, and the narration will make you grin (at the very least, probably laugh a few times, too). In Lies Sleeping part of that care, part of the thoroughness of this novel is how there is a tie -- character, event, call-back, allusion -- to every novel, novella, comic arc involved in the Rivers of London up to this point -- if you haven't read everything, it won't detract from your understanding of the novel -- but if you have read them all, if you catch the references -- it makes it just that much richer.

 

So what is this novel about? Well, after years of chasing The Faceless Man (and The Faceless Man II), Peter Grant (now a Detective Constable) and Nightengale have his identity, have several leads to follow to track him down -- or at least his supporters and accessories (willingly or not). Better yet -- the Metropolitan Police Force have given them the manpower they need to truly track him down and interfere with his funding and activities.

 

During this operation, Peter, Guleed and Nightengale become convinced that Martin Chorley (and, of course, former PC Lesley May) are preparing for something major. They're not sure what it is, but the kind of magic involved suggests that the results would be calamitous. How do you prepare for that? How do you counter the unexpected, but dangerous? There are two paths you follow: thorough, careful, borderline-tedious policework; and bold, creative, innovative thinking. The two of those employed together lead to some great results -- and if Peter Grant isn't the embodiment of both, he's . . . okay, he's not perfect at the former, but he can pretend frequently (and has colleagues who can pick up the slack).

 

Not only do we get time with all our old friends and foes -- we meet some new characters -- including a River unlike anyone that Father or Mama Thames as yet introduced to. Mr. Punch is more involved in this story than he has been since Midnight Riot, but in a way we haven't seen before. Most of the character things I want to talk about fit under the "spoiler" category, so I'll just say that I enjoyed and/or loved the character development and growth demonstrated in every returning character.

 

There's more action/combat kind of scenes in this book than we're used to. I couldn't be happier -- Peter's grown enough in his abilities and control to not need Nightengale to bail him out of everything. Nightengale and Peter working together in a fast-paced battle scene is something I've been waiting to read for 7 years. It was worth the wait.

 

As I said before, Lies Sleeping is the best and most ambitious of the series -- the richness of the writing, the audacity of the action, the widening scope of the novel, the Phineas and Ferb reference, the epic battle scenes, the growth in Peter, Bev, and Guleed (and maybe even Lesley), the ending rivals Broken Homes' -- all add up to a fantastic read. Yeah, I'm a fanboy when it comes to this series, and Lies Sleeping made me a happy fanboy. I have no idea how Aaronovitch moves on from this point with these books, but I cannot wait to find out.


Disclaimer: I received this eARC from Berkley Publishing Group via NetGalley in exchange for this post -- thanks to both for this.

Source: irresponsiblereader.com/2018/10/10/lies-sleeping-by-ben-aaronovitch-things-get-intense-in-the-ongoing-conflict-between-the-faceless-man-and-the-folly
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review 2018-10-02 11:19
Mountain of Lies by Jayne Evans
Mountain of Lies (The Pack Book 1) - Jayne Evans

***eBook available for free on Amazon***

Mia Blackmore finds herself in a strange predicament. First, she's almost covered by a landslide and supposedly left there by a would-be rescuer. To get free, she provokes another slide and takes her would-be rescuer along with her.

The guy out to be an undercover cop, Hudson McClure, up on the mountain looking for a stash of drugs, when Mia took him with her on her way down, and now, partly to protect her and partly to do his job, he's determined to stick around.

Only she doesn't want him to stick around and it quickly turns out, Mia is as good as keeping secrets and wearing masks as he is.


Usually freebies are mostly misses, and this one didn't look like much at the beginning. But it didn't sound so bad as to make me stop reading, and once the story kicked into higher gear, I was hooked.

Yes, I found it a little too filled with coincidences and the heroine got on my nerves a little with her supposed passivity (which I promptly forgot about, once the story got into its groove), and I loved the hero, their interactions and the relationship blossoming between them, I adored Neville, Mia's furry sidekick and lie detector, and the suspense, despite its many coincidences tying it all up in a nice little bow, was nicely developed, well-paced, and quite intriguing.

Because of the coincidental suspense, I somewhat wished the story was longer and the two cases weren't as connected as they turned out to be, but in hindsight, I must admit, the length was rather perfect. Not too short to make it all seem rushed, and not too long to drag it all down to a halt.

I liked the voice and narrative style and I'm looking forward to reading more from this author.

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text 2018-10-01 11:46
September wrap up
White Lies - Jeremy Bates
Hark! The Herald Angels Scream - Christopher Golden
John Peters in the land of Demons - A.H. Matai
Loch Ness Revenge - Hunter Shea
Doomsday - Samie Sands
Rose Cottage - Mary Stewart
Unsettled Spirits - J. Matthew Saunders
Barnabas Tew and The Case Of The Missing Scarab - Columbkill Noonan
The Hermit's Creepy Pet (Single Shot Short Story Series Book 10) - Terry M. West
Trapped in Room 217 - Thomas Kingsley Troupe

 

Wow, 14 books this month! That's a lot for me. Admittedly I was going for the shorter ones to get through as many as possible. I do have some reading done on longer ones too, so we'll just see how things go in the coming month.

 

Stand outs this month are The Last Werewolf, White Lies and Pieces of Her. These were all really good. I got various levels of enjoyment from most of them, only one got below 3 stars from me.

 

Bingo reads continue! But I also have 4 Netgalley books that aren't for Bingo squares so will need to at least make a start on those. Not much sample reading during Bingo. I'll have to devote some time to that in November.

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review 2018-10-01 11:28
White Lies
White Lies - Jeremy Bates

by Jeremy Bates

 

This had me unsettled right away. Katrina is driving with her Boxer dog to a new city to start a new job. Rain is pouring down and when she passes a man hitchhiking, her humanitarianism outweighs her caution about being a woman alone and she offers him a lift. However, within minutes he makes her feel unsettled and having already lied about her destination, she pulls over and demands that he get out of the car.

 

The little white lie that she was turning off at the next stop seems harmless, but it will set in motion a series of lies that escalate until Katrina finds herself wrapped up in a horrific situation, one lie at a time.

 

The plot is extremely well done. The spreading of the web of lies and the complications that result was at a pace and done with an artistry that you could easily imagine actually happening, apart from a few events towards the end that felt a little rushed.

 

The one thing that wasn't realistic was Kat's responses that got her into so much trouble. Mr. Bates should have asked a few women how they would handle the situations because part of being female 101 is how to lie to creepy guys that make you uncomfortable.

 

Rule number 1: you NEVER cop to living someplace, real or not. Creepy guys are too inclined to follow you home. Whatever the truth is, you're going to someone else's house for an unpleasant reason and no, it wouldn't be okay for someone to go along with you. They might get shot/contaminated or whatever.

 

You sure as Hell don't mention what street you live on and no, you can't invite people because it's not your cabin and you're just moving out from a violent ex.

 

How hard is it? Sorry guys, blame the creeps in your midst. For us, it's survival.

If you've pressured a woman or even curb crawled to insist she give you her phone number, don't complain when it turns out to be the number for the local police. I had that one memorized by the time I was 11.

 

Again, towards the end a few of her actions were outright stupid. I don't want to give spoilers but if you've established someone is dangerous, you get as far away from them as you can and let the police handle it.

 

The suspense and characterisation were very well done and I will continue to count Jeremy Bates as a Modern Master of Horror, but he really does need to talk to some women about 'what would you do' situations.

 

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