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review 2017-03-23 02:05
The Passenger by Lisa Lutz
The Passenger - Lisa Lutz

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I thought that this book was just okay. I have been a fan of Lisa Lutz for a long time and have a great fondness for her Spellman Files series. I knew going into this book that this was going to be a completely different kind of story and I was really looking forward to seeing what she would do with it. There were things that I did like about this story but other elements were not quite as enjoyable.

The book opens with the death of Tanya's husband. Tanya immediately leaves town and starts working on assuming a new identity. Tanya tells us that she didn't hurt her husband, Frank, but we have no idea why she feels like she needs to leave town. I was really curious about her motivation to run. That wasn't a small decision and she knew exactly what to do so it was very obvious that Tanya had disappeared before. Tanya changes her name several times in the story but for the purpose of the review, I am just going to stick with Tanya.

Tanya meets Blue in a bar when Blue figures out that she isn't exactly who she says she is. They find themselves in a serious situation soon after they meet and they form an interesting friendship. Both Blue and Tanya are on the run and are both hiding who they truly are from the world. Blue's character was one that I didn't quite trust. Blue just seemed to have a more criminal mind than Tanya did.

I did want to keep reading so that I could learn why Tanya felt she had to run in the first place. If she didn't hurt her husband, it didn't make sense unless she had something else from her past. The emails that were sprinkled in the book between chapters quickly hinted that there was something from her past that we hadn't discovered yet. I also really liked the humor that was sprinkled throughout the book. This isn't a funny story but Lisa Lutz's sense of humor is still very evident in the writing.

I was really disappointed by the ending of this book. Seriously disappointed. I read all of those pages eagerly awaiting a big reveal that caused Tanya to be on the run and it just didn't do a lot for me. The big twist that was supposed to shock me at the end just added another layer of disappointment.

I am not really sure that I would recommend this book. I do think that a lot of readers will really enjoy this book a lot more than I did. I did like the book and I do consider 3 stars to be a good rating. It just wasn't as good as I had hoped it would be. I do plan to continue reading Lisa Lutz's work in the future and commend her for writing a different kind of story.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Simon & Schuster via NetGalley and Edelweiss.

Initial Thoughts
Way late on reviewing this one. I must say that I am really disappointed by how this one ended. I would say that this book was okay overall but I feel let down now that I finished.

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review 2017-03-22 21:32
[Book Review] The Thing About Love
The Thing About Love - Julie James

Six years ago, Jessica Harlow and John Shepherd got off on the wrong foot... repeatedly.  What he considered encouragement and motivation she took as insulting and demeaning.  Then she might have come across a bit more vindictive than intended, and it all got even more tangled up from there.  But Agent Harlow has come home to Chicago after a failed marriage and been assigned to work with the newly single Agent Shepherd on an undercover mission before he leaves to join the Hostage Rescue Team.  Working together brings old grievances to light, and gives a chance for explanations and mending.

Of course, once they no longer exist in states of perpetual irritation with each other their not-so-latent attraction rears its head.  Things proceed about as expected (clothes on the floor and the two of them even sometimes on the bed).  Only, John's leaving, which may have assuaged the initial concerns about co-worker romance... but what if they could be something more?


Other alternative titles for this book include: "When Two Alpha Personalities Meet" and "Dangerous Yoga Pants."

The Thing About Love definitely made for a fun read.  It's not particularly surprising, you could tell from the beginning that they were going to fall in bed with each other, but it kept a good pace and a fun level of humor.  The story gets sexy, but keeps things overall light.  I definitely twitted the book about  little things here and there, but I enjoyed it overall.  Well written and engaging.  If someone likes the idea of sexy FBI agents finding romance with each other it should be a hit.

Advance Reader Copy courtesy of Penguin RandomHouse in exchange for an honest review; changes may exist between galley and the final edition.

Source: libromancersapprentice.blogspot.com/2017/03/book-review-thing-about-love.html
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review 2017-03-22 17:12
It Happens All the Time/Amy Hatvany
It Happens All the Time: A Novel - Amy Hatvany

Amber Bryant and Tyler Hicks have been best friends since they were teenagers—trusting and depending on each other through some of the darkest periods of their young lives. And while Amber has always felt that their relationship is strictly platonic, Tyler has long harbored the secret desire that they might one day become more than friends.

Returning home for the summer after her college graduation, Amber begins spending more time with Tyler than she has in years. Despite the fact that Amber is engaged to her college sweetheart, a flirtation begins to grow between them. One night, fueled by alcohol and concerns about whether she’s getting married too young, Amber kisses Tyler.

What happens next will change them forever.

In alternating points of view, It Happens All the Time examines the complexity of sexual dynamics between men and women and offers an incisive exploration of gender roles, expectations, and the ever-timely issue of consent.

 

Ugh, this book was so important and covered such an important and rare perspective that although I didn't actually like it that much, I so highly recommend it.

 

Hatvany does an extraordinary good job of transitioning between sections. The book is told from two perspectives across multiple stretches of time, and although the chapters didn't indicate explicitly which part of the year they were being told from, it was always completely clear to me, which I found to be incredibly effective. I didn't get lost ever and I felt like the author guided me very clearly through the story.

 

I think this book is important. I think it tackles huge topics. I think Tyler's perspective sheds so much light on similar people's thought processes. I think today's society needs this book.

 

But I didn't appreciate the events that prompted the ending. I didn't like how one incident, the one that opens the book, influenced my entire thinking. I would have liked to have seen the actions that one character would have taken had he not had this outside event impacting him. And for me, that seriously detracted from the book.

 

And I didn't find Tyler's character to be as sympathetic as perhaps I was supposed to. His friendship with Amber as he grew up didn't strike me as particularly meaningful. I wished Amber had reached out and found other friends, and I felt like when she was at university, she would have.

 

Mainly, I just never get particularly engrossed in this book. It was easy enough to read, but even though Amber was an extremely motivated and well-rounded character, the type I normally love, I found it hard to really get involved, and I felt like there were many points where I could have stopped reading and simply forgotten about the book.

 

So I recommend this book, I do, because it's important. But I think it could have been better executed.

 

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2017-03-22 16:19
Startide Rising - David Brin

The starship Streaker, crewed mostly by dolphins, has discovered what may be evidence of the race that started the whole cycle of uplift throughout the galaxy. Several other alien species, intercepting Streaker's message about the discovery to Earth, pursue the ship determined to seize this evidence for their own benefit. Damaged in an encounter with some of these aliens, the Streaker is forced to land on the planet Kithrup. As the ship prepares to flee again, various different alien fleets blockade the planet, their seizing of the vessel only prevented by their battle with each other. And the planet itself also threatens their survival.

 

This book is a sequel to Sundiver, I was disappointed by the lack of mention of the race discovered on the sun. Surely, that must have had some major impact on Earth. However, this book does lots of things which I really enjoyed. In including viewpoints from several alien races, it fleshed out galactic society and some of the reasons uplift had taken on such a central role. The dolphin crew, particularly the captain Creideiki, are more interesting than their human and simian crew mates largely because the incompleteness of their uplift gives them unique and compelling internal conflicts.

 

Uplift as portrayed here raised a lot of ethical questions for me. For example, it is only certain species of dolphin that are being uplifted. What ultimately happens to the stock that don't make the grade? Are there going to be unaltered stock left in the wild? What relation have they to their sentient kin? At what point does a neo-dolphin cease to be a dolphin at all? You have to be willing to not worry too much about these questions to enjoy the book. Why should the natives of Kithrup be candidates for uplift on a par with dolphins or chimps when the former can build their huts and use weapons.

 

Also there are a lot of viewpoints, so if you prefer a small number of points of view, this book may not be for you. However, I found the aliens' perspectives and the insight into their various psychologies captivating. At the beginning of the book the action on the planet seems a bit detached from the orbiting battle but they collide dramatically the tension ramps up. All in all, it was well worth reading.

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review 2017-03-22 14:54
Book Review for Cut Wide Open A Bleeding Scars MC by Abby McCarthy
 

Cut Wide Open
A Bleeding Scars MC
by Abby McCarthy
 stars
 
Reviewed by: Angels
Format:Kindle
Published:  Amazon Digital
Source: ARC
Genre:  MC Romance,Romance,Erotica,
Bad Boys
 

Blurb

One day you held my hand. One day you loved me.
 
Then you were gone.
 
At sixteen, I lost the only love I’d ever known. Thrown back into the foster system, pregnant and alone, I prayed that you’d come for me and save me from life’s cruelties. Only the next time I saw you, it was too late.
 
Doing what I needed to do to provide for my son, we were finally brought face to face. It should have been the best day of my life, but it was far from it. It was the worst.
 
That day a monster took me and held me captive.
 
I begged for my life. I prayed for my son. I dreamt of you, the memories keeping me alive.
 
You finally came for me. You were my heart. My Salvation.
But sometimes the heart is too damaged, too broken, to be saved.
 
And sometimes monsters have a way of coming back to haunt me.
 

*This is a dark story. It is intended for mature audiences. If you need a trigger warning then this book isn’t for you. I have other books of mine that I’d recommend like Current or Tainted by Crazy, but not this one.


Our Review
Gunner and Charlotte

This is our first time reading this author and I am happy to say that we enjoyed our first read by them.We will be looking forward to reading more in this series for sure.

We love reading about those sexy bad boys and those hot as hell bikers they always take care of that fix for us.We always enjoy finding new authors to help with that addiction of them and we are glad to have come across this author to feed our needs.

Gunner and Charlotte were high school sweethearts.They have developed a deep connection between one another the kind that lasts a lifetime. Unfortunately life gets in the way of their happily after ever.Will these Soul Mates find their way back to one another?

I have to say that I loved the story cover to cover.I will point our that it is not a story for the faint of heart.The story contains rape,torture,human trafficking all done by the worst kind of monster which made it such a heart wrenching read.I have to say that this story touched my emotions on so many levels and at times made me a bit nervous and afraid of what would happen next.I cannot imagine how Charlotte survived the horrific things that were done to her.I takes a very strong person to survive and Charlotte's main focus had always been about getting back to her son.Love is what motivated her to survive and perhaps stay sane and hopefully survive the aftermath of it all.

I admired Charlotte as she was always a survivor even since childhood.I love how she was a strong and loving and giving mother.I loved the bond that she had with her son and that of Gunner.My heart broke for the things that Charlotte endeared her entire life.I loved how she survived to become a survivor and not that of a victim. I love how her heart always belonged to Gunner even though they were apart.I love reading about a couple that their love survives the test of time.

I alway pick a favorite character in a story and mine this time around is going to be Gunner.I picked Gunner because he surprised me most about what he felt ,how he acted,and how he followed through with things.I love how he never gave up his search for Charlotte and how he never stopped loving her.I loved that fact that his heart had always belonged to her whether they were together or apart .All these things surprised me the most because of the way he chose to live his current life. His heart always remained opened and never became hardened or jaded unlike most men who chose that kind of life he led.I loved that about him the most.I loved how furiously he loved Jade and that of his son and the lengths he would go to kept them safe.

Gunner was very intense,dangerous,serious,edgy,handsome,love-able all wrapped up into one bad boy package that us girls can't help but fall for.I loved the chemistry between Charlotte and himself it made for some very hot sexual encounters.

I enjoyed this story and all its character's.I love when you are able to connect with the characters that you read about and I was able to do that.The different personalties of the other MC members added to making story a bit more lighter especially when a plot is riddled with pain and suffering.I was engrossed in the plot and that of its characters from the very first pages.I loved that once I started reading the story I couldn't put it down.I loved how intense the story became with its twists and turns it took and I loved that fact that a couple so in love were able to find each other again and get a chance for their Happily Ever After.The story kept you on edge the entire time with anticipation of what would happen next as the secrets kept coming to life one after another.This was definitely a story that you could not help let it affect your heart strings as it did to mine.I loved this intense love story with all of its twist and turns it made for a very enticing and an engrossing read.

A recommended read to all !

 
 
 
 

 
 

About Author
 

Abby McCarthy is reader and a lover of words. She is a blogger turned author and released her first novel in May 2014. She is a mother of three, a wife and a dog person. She has always written, sometimes poetry, sometimes just to vent about failed relationships, however in parenthood she has found her voice to help keep her sanity. Words have flowed from her, to review and with the support of amazing friends in the Indie community she has decided to pursue her dream of writing! She loves to write and read romance, because isn't that something we all yearn for? Whether it be flowers and hand holding or just the right tug on your hair. Isn't that what life is about? The human connection?
 
You may find us here !

 


 

 
 
 

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