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review 2019-12-04 22:36
I decided to listen to this one on a whim...
Light from the Dark - Mercy Celeste,Derrick McClain

and honestly compared some of Ms Celeste other stories...in particular 'Midnight Clear'/'Need You Now' for me this one just didn't measure up. I was a little put off by Chris's 'I don't know what my sexuality is so I'll be ACE...oh wait, hot man sighting, I must be gay.' while admittedly I'm neither ACE nor gay, I am pretty sure that it doesn't quite work that way. I really think that it would have been a whole lot more convincing given Chris's lack of experience and how sheltered he was in regards to matters of sexuality, sexual identity and just sex in general if maybe he had just been portrayed as someone who was confused and a bit uniformed in this area but it was what it was.


The other part that just wasn't working for me was the extended breaks in the mystery part or the story that happened so that Micah and Chris could explore Chris's sexuality...you remember Chris, the 'ACE' character...trust me folks he was definitely making up for lost time.


There were also a couple of issue in regard to the mystery part of this story that I found to be a bit questionable so that wasn't really going tickity boo for me either but I'm not going to spoil anything for future readers by saying more than this.


Derrick McClain provided the narration for this one and if I'm rating strictly in regards to that aspect of things I'd probably be rating this a bit higher but in spite of the solid job provided for the narration it wasn't enough to make me overlook what didn't work so I'm leaving this one at 3 stars overall.

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review 2019-12-04 14:00
Watching from the Dark - Gytha Lodge

So imagine this. You’re on the computer late one night, waiting for your girlfriend to appear on your Skype feed. You can see her empty living room & it sounds like she’s in the bath. Suddenly, in the corner of the screen, you see the edge of her front door slowly open. Soft foot steps echo down the hallway. The next thing you hear is the sound of splashing water. Minutes later, you watch in horror as the front door quietly closes. Silence.


Aidan Poole doesn’t have to imagine it. He’s left staring at the screen, terrified by what he just witnessed. Clearly Zoe needs help ASAP. So then why is he strangely reluctant to call 999?



Now THAT’s how it’s done, folks. If this prologue doesn’t grab you, you’re…ungrabbable. Or possibly in a coma. If you read “She Lies in Wait”, you’ll be familiar with the returning cast.


DCI Jonah Sheens is back & as the story begins he receives a weird message at the Hampshire Constabulary: some guy called about some girl somewhere in the area who might be in trouble. Or dead. Huh? After consulting the records (and Google) he finally comes up with a name & address. A quick visit confirms that yes, Zoe Swardadine is in fact very dead. Time to gather the team.


Domnall O’Malley, Juliette Hanson & Ben Lightman make up his close knit squad & they waste no time assembling a list of Zoe’s nearest & dearest. Let’s see….there’s Aidan, the boyfriend with everything to lose. Angeline is a close friend who clearly has some issues. Maeve is her former room mate with a complicated love life. Victor is the co-worker who quietly carried a torch for her. And then there’s Felix, the older man who was her landlord.


What follows is a layered story full of people with something to hide. The challenge for the squad is figuring out which of their secrets are related to the murder. As little snippets of information surface, each of the people in Zoe’s life will top the list of suspects at one time or another.


Alternating with the present day investigation are chapters that begin 20 months before her death. Here we get the history of how Zoe & Aidan met & the complex relationships between the gang. As these progress, they begin to inform the present & change how you view each of the characters. You’ll find yourself giving one of them the side-eye & thinking Aha!. Then you read the next chapter & suddenly someone else becomes your prime suspect.


This is not an action packed, shoot-em-up kind of procedural. It’s a twisty psychological suspense story that touches on the darker sides of human nature such as obsession, jealousy, deception & the damage people do to each other. The middle section showcases the grunt work cops endure that makes or breaks a case. It’s also where they (and the reader) pick up the clues that ultimately point them in the direction of Zoe’s killer.


By the end of book #1, I knew the regulars were characters I wanted to meet again so I really enjoyed this. It’s a pleasure to come across a police force portrayed in a way that avoids the usual tropes of office politics & backstabbing. Instead you have distinct characters who actually get along & each brings something different to the table. Domnall is the elder statesman of the squad with a dry wit. Juliette is smart, keen & there are hints of a developing subplot concerning her past. Ben is a quiet guy who is bit of an enigma. And holding them all together is Jonah. He’s a likeable man who’s only really comfortable when he’s on the job. As for his personal life…well, that needs a little work.


All in all, a creepy & intricate story with an ending that may surprise many readers. Job done.




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text 2019-12-04 03:25
Reading progress update: I've read 115 out of 177 pages.
The Man With The Dark Beard - Annie Haynes,Curtis Evans

I’ll save the rest for tomorrow. this has been a thoroughly entertaining read. it’s wonderful that all these old, forgotten Mysteries are being made available to us again!

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text 2019-12-04 01:24
Reading progress update: I've read 40 out of 177 pages.
The Man With The Dark Beard - Annie Haynes,Curtis Evans

this is fun - I’m pleased. it’s from 1928, it’s a Locked Room Mystery, and the style plus characters plus plot have got me thinking of Miss Silver books, with a bit of Carr’s The Crooked Hinge (though I hope this is better). the author had 12 Mysteries published 1923-1930 - that includes posthumously, because she died relatively young in early 1929 (Detection Club formed one year later) - and they disappeared into limbo not long after initial publication. thanks to the Intro (Intros, really) for this info, and the other bits of data dug up about Annie Haynes.


and yes - Miss Lavinia is a pip of a character, and could have done well in her own series. I wait on every drop of her verbal venom.

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review 2019-12-03 17:21
Dark Illusion
Dark Illusion ('Dark' Carpathian Book 33) - Christine Feehan
Dark (Carpathians), Book 29

I Picked Up This Book Because: Continue the series

The Characters:

Julija Brennan:
Isai Florea:
Barnabas, Anatolli (Julija’s father), Belle, Blue, Comet, Phaedra

The Story:

I used to adore Christine Feehan’s writing, the last few years however, I've found it repetitive and unnecessarily long. This book is no exception. While she creates beautiful, vivid images with her words I could do with a few less of them. The story, when you trim off the excess, was really good. Julija was trying to find a destroy a book created by Xavier and last seen with Isai’s brother. I will admit Isai’s behavior at the beginning of the book had me ready to quit but I’m glad I held on. I like him and Julija together.

The Random Thoughts:

I listened to this on CD and greatly missed the ability to speed up the dialogue like I can on digital audiobooks.

The Score Card:


3.25 Stars
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