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review 2018-04-15 03:16
Out in June
City of Devils - Paul French City of Devils - Paul French

Disclaimer: ARC via Netgalley

 

                Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom opens in 1935 at a club in the city of Shanghai.  Jones is going to met a gangster, and, of course, the shit hits the fan.  It is a Hollywood version of what Shanghai was like during the interwar years. Yet, there is some truth to it.  The city did have Badlands, and there were clubs that not only hired but catered to expatriates from America and Europe.  In his book City of Devils, Paul French presents the truth and while it does involve show girls there is a great more drugs, murder, and the looming threat of war.

 

                French details Shanghai, in particular Joe Farren and Jack Riley, two men who were sometimes engaged in legal business and sometimes in not so legal business.  Joe Farren started as a Fred Astaire or Vernon Castle type.  Escaping Vienna and touring Asia with his wife and the dance troupe they eventually started.  Farren is the dapper man, the married man with his wife Nellie.  He does resemble, at least in French’s description. 

 

                Riley is more of a gangster type.  American, blunt, and physical as opposed to dapper.  But not stupid, not stupid at all. His washing up at Shanghai isn’t so much to do with his performance ability. The two men are sometimes partners, sometimes rivals, sometimes enemies.

 

                In the story of the rise and fall of the two men, French also describes the imploding of Shanghai as an international colony forced upon the Chinese as well as the coming Second World War.  It isn’t just crime that causes the problems but also the Japanese and the shifting of power.

 

                At points, French introduces newspaper columns and Chinese views on what is occurring – either the view of the white men or the invading Japanese.  It is those bits that are the most moving and wonderful because they move the book beyond a simple history of the underworld.

 

                French writes with passion and vigor.  His prose is quite engrossing, and he does the best he can with limited sources.  What is most interesting (and hardy lest surprising) is that the women were harder to trace than the men.  It is to French’s credit that he shows the women as more than just molls or enablers.  In fact, a few of them are movers and shakers.

 

                The book is both engaging and engrossing.

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review 2018-03-01 20:14
The Devil's Colony - Bill Schweigart
The Devil's Colony - Bill Schweigart

In a trilogy pertaining to cryptid monsters, I find it fitting that the final book in the series centers around the most horrible monster of all - man. The evil that man has inflicted on each other is astounding to think about. Hatred and bigotry come front and center in Schweigart's The Devil's Colony. Ben and Lindsay are once again called on by billionaire cryptozoologist, Richard Severance. This time, it's to infiltrate the compound of neo-nazi Henry Drexler. Henry is the son of a former Nazi SS officer and scientist who was assigned by Hitler to find proof of the dominance and superiority of the Aryan race throughout history. Now Henry is using his family's fortune and remote camp location in the Pine Barrens Woods of New Jersey to welcome all neo-Nazis and white supremacists who want to join him in continuing his father's dream. But what else has Henry unearthed in his research of his father's past?

 

The Devil's Colony is different than the previous two entries in the trilogy. The first two, The Beast of Barcroft and Northwoods centers around the cryptid monsters that are unleashed and causing havoc. In The Devil's Colony, the story focuses mainly on the horror's of man and the cryptid monster is a side dish to come in during the last act. According to some reviews I've read, this difference may have tripped up a reader or two. However, it didn't spoil the story for me. I enjoyed Schweigart's tale and thought it hit many of the right notes. Perhaps, the cryptid portion of the story could've been sprinkled a little more throughout so that it didn't seem like two different stories trying to be mashed together. All in all, I enjoyed the trilogy and look forward to more from Bill.

 

 


4 Nazi SS Swords out of 5

 

 


You can also follow my reviews at the following links:

 

https://intothemacabre.com

 

http://intothemacabre.booklikes.com

 

https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/5919799-ken-mckinley

 

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text 2018-02-01 00:56
January in Review

January in Review

(Read: 5 / Reviewed: 9)

It's certainly been an interesting, if not a long, month! Phew, I thought January would never end! Fortunately I got through some great books and was able to write two reviews each week. This new routine really helped me stay on top of things. Let's take a look at all the bookish goodness, shall we?

Read

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Splatterpunk Fighting Back by (multiple) - This analogy has eleven individual stories written by different authors. Going in, I was only vaguely familiar with Duncan Ralston, having previously finished Woom. I never would've discovered this had it not been for Horror Aficionados on Goodreads, of who appointed it the January group read with author invite. I was lucky enough to ask some of the authors questions whilst trying to gain more insight into their brutal tales, and I had a blast! The best thing, though? All proceeds of this book go to charity! (Rated: 4/5)

A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay - Another one I wouldn't have picked up if not for the Horror Aficionados group. Being the January group read, I was pleasantly surprised by this one! (Rated: 4/5)

The Darkest Torment by Gena Showalter - I started this long-running series in 2011, and it's still ongoing. Whilst I really enjoyed it at the beginning, my enjoyment waned several instalments ago, however I can't just give up without finishing it, can I? Ludicrous! (Rated: 2/5)

What Hides Within by Jason Parent - I found this on Netgalley, and I'm glad I did! Bloodshot Books accepted my request, and I promptly read and reviewed it. (Rated: 4/5)

Morium by S.J. Hermann - I was requested to read and review this novel by the author. Being my last read of January, this one takes priority and will be the first review of February. See my request information here. (Rated: 3/5)

 

Reviewed 

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Blood Song by Cat Adams (WORST READ)
Lockdown by Alexander Gordon Smith
The Taste of Night by Vicki Pettersson
Stephen by Amy Cross
The Devil’s Work by Mark Edwards
Blood Moon by Graeme Reynolds (BEST READ)
Woom by Duncan Ralston
What Hides Within by Jason Parent
Dark Space by Kevis Hendrickson

Other than that, January was a decent month for me personally. I'm enjoying reading more, getting out more, and generally trying to put more effort into my day-to-day life. I thank everyone who made this past month all the better, including the wonderful authors I had the chance to speak to! Here's hoping for a book-tastic February!

Red xx

Source: redlace.reviews/2018/01/31/january-in-review
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review 2018-01-12 15:44
Prince of Darkness (Justin de Quincy #4)- Sharon Kay Penman
Prince of Darkness (Justin de Quincy ,#4) - Sharon Kay Penman

I really wanted to savor this novel. Knowing that when I finished, there were no more Justin de Quincy books, was kind of a bummer. I didn't want to rush through only to be sad at the end. You know what they say about the best laid plans.........

 

I couldn't take this book slowly. I was hooked from the beginning. The pairing of Justin and Durand was brilliant. I know they have worked "together" in previous novels but never really have they had to make it obvious they are on the same side. If that doesn't make sense, read the books. I promise you won't be disappointed. Anyway, I loved the Justin and Durand pairing. It was medieval good cop/bad cop. I would love to read more books featuring that dynamic.

 

It's unfortunate Penman has never had the opportunity to really wrap this series up. The end certainly left an opening for future books. However, Penman has said on several occasions that her publisher won't release any more de Quincy books. *Sigh* I guess I will just have to settle for the other Penman novels I have not yet read. 

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review 2018-01-06 07:10
New Covers - Malone Brothers Series

 

 

 

Universal Amazon Link— www.amzn.to/2DEKcLm

KC Malone is on a two-week leave from the Navy when he arrives at his uncle’s beach house to find a beautiful woman pointing a gun at his chest. What the hell has he just walked in on?

Moriah Jensen is on the run from dirty cops and ruthless drug dealers. Fleeing Chicago after her family was murdered, she spends the next four months trying to stay alive. Using an alias, she bounces from town to town, state to state, struggling to stay steps ahead of the people chasing her.

As the two become reluctant, temporary housemates, KC offers to train Moriah to defend herself against an alleged abusive ex-boyfriend. But when her past catches up with her, Moriah has to decide between her love for KC and running for safety. To stay would risk both their lives. To run would mean leaving her heart behind.

 

 

 
The Devil's Spare Change
by Samantha A. Cole
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is the 2nd book in the Malone Brothers series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. For reader enjoyment and understanding, I recommend reading this series in order.

Grace & Sean have known one another most of their lives. Growing up together still never prepares you for that one meeting. The one where you come back after time apart and get blown away by a sexy hot bod.

Sean's move and vacation plans are blown when he is asked to help with a local case of murder. He is more than attracted to Grace, and being on this case takes time away from him getting to know her all over again.

One word for this series - explosive! This book has you on the edge from chapter 1. So much heat, so much excitement, so much murder, wait... what? Oh yeah, did I tell you? There is an actual case being solved here too.


***This ARC copy is given in exchange for an honest review.

View all my reviews

 

 

 

 

 



Universal Amazon Link—www.smarturl.it/TDSC_Amz

FBI agent Sean Malone’s homecoming is interrupted by two things—a pleasant surprise from his youth and a deranged serial killer.

The little tomboy who’d followed him and his brothers around is now grown up and drop-dead gorgeous, and he finds himself thinking about her in ways he’d never done before.

Whisper, North Carolina, where she’d spent her childhood summers, is the perfect place for Grace Whitman to open her new business—especially when she finds her adolescent crush has returned as well.

As the two get to know each other all over again, local law enforcement asks Sean to help find the man who has tortured and killed three women. Will the killer follow his pattern and move on, or has Dare County become his permanent hunting ground?

 

 

 
Take the Money and Run
by Samantha A. Cole
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

KC Malone meets Moriah Jensen AKA Maura when she holds him at gunpoint in his uncle's cabin. He surprised her at 3am, and she had no idea why he is there. To his credit, he explains everything to her.

Maura cannot trust anyone right now. She can't afford to. Can she be safe with KC? He agrees to help her, sort of. He just has no idea how much "help" she really needs. The sparks are burning bright between them. Maybe there is more here than meets the eye.

Such a sexy and sweet story filled with heart pumping suspense! The heat can be felt as it jumps off the page between these two characters. I could not put this book down!


***This ARC copy was given in exchange for an honest review.

View all my reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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