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review 2021-02-22 11:15
Review - Zombie Fallout by Mark Tufo
Zombie Fallout - Mark Tufo

Well, well, well..I'm into Booklikes for the first time in many months  Quite excited by that, if I'm honest!  So far, so good, I'll just keep my fingers crossed that this works.  Nothing much to say about Zombie Fallout, apart from I love the series and I'm on to Book 8 now, just wanted to see if I could make a post...  Here goes nothing...

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review 2020-10-03 04:30
Nancy Warren: The Vampire Knitting Club
The Vampire Knitting Club - Nancy Warren

In the first in a series Nancy Warren takes readers to Oxford where a knitting shop seems to be the hub for paranormal activity in town:

 

Lucy Swift travels to Oxford to escape from another bad relationship and just feeling like she has no direction and purpose in life but she know that her Gran will make her feel better and set her on the right path. Lucy is shocked to discover that her Gran is deceased and has been for three week, but Lucy is sure that she just saw her down the street. Lucy discovers that she is her Gran's sole heir to her shop Cardinal Woolsey's a knitting shop and that should keep her busy as she tries to process everything that happens. But it turns out her Gran just cannot stay away. Gran is very much alive, well Undead, a Vampire and the Vampires of Oxford have been using Cardinal Woolsey's as their knitting circle meet up. From Gran Lucy finds that she she did not die peacefully but cannot remember what happened only that her dying was not an accident. Lucy is determined to find out what occurred and she's about to discovery more about herself in the process.

I know this is not my usual read, but for the sake of Halloween Bingo I read one of these cozy mystery books a year and they quite fun and a nice change from what I usually read. I can sum this book up as a pretty cute read with a side of murder that occur. I also think that you can tell from the cover that the vampires within this book are not the scary blood sucking type. Actually you find out pretty early on they have a side hustle to get their blood supply and really a vampire knitting club, I guess who doesn’t have more time than the vampire to learn how to perfect the art of knitting. What I liked that Warren did though was not all the members of the club were old (when they were turned) and female, there were a few men in there as well. Additionally, I think that Warren did a good job in trying to throw as many suspects or red herrings as she could as to who the killer actually was, I did find myself changing my mind a few times, but was able to figure it out. Nevertheless, Warren does a good job with the mystery aspect.

I liked that there wasn’t any romance in this book. I mean it is hinted at that there may be a triangle in the future but this was much more about Lucy trying to adjust to her Gran’s “death” and trying to find out who did it. So minimal relationship and romance which is strange for a cozy mystery but appreciate it.

Warren does try to do a lot in this book, so a few things are missed along the way in regards to background as to some of the characters and not really fleshing out the main ones there. If I were to read farther in this series (there is always next year's BINGO) I would want a bit more substance to the characters.

So this is an easy read, that is cutesy as you have vampires who spend their undead years perfecting their knitting skills. So if you’re looking for a cozy Halloween read this one is for you.

Enjoy!!!

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review 2020-07-07 22:18
Review ~ Great read!
The Vampire Book Club - Nancy Warren
This is a joint review with Bea from Bea's Book Nook

Plot

Bea: The story was slow and the grand reveal was over the top. I'm worried there may be a romance developing between Quinn and Lachlan. Worried because it's such an obvious and trite story path to take.

AVR: The murder mystery seems a little contrived and I agree that the reveal was a bit much. It does seem as if the author is leading us toward a Lachlan/Quinn romance. I don't mind if they date, but I'd like to see some other interest(s) for Quinn. Maybe because I'm not a huge fan of the romance between Rafe & Lucy in the Knitting series. Mostly because Lucy doesn't seem to be all in either. Actually, Quinn seems a better choice as a romantic interest for a vampire than Lucy because she doesn't seem to have the same "immortal" hang up that Lucy still does. I guess we'll see.

Bea: Oh yes, the mystery felt quite contrived but then so did the location of the book club meetings. Lachlan's home would seem to make more sense, if only from a privacy perspective.

Characters

Bea:I liked seeing Rafe, Agnes, and Sylvia. I loved that this trip to Ireland was referenced in a couple of the book Vampire Knitting Club series. And since I read the most recent Knitting book before I read this one, I met Lachlan in that. It was a nice little preview.

AVR: I haven't quite warmed up to Quinn like I did immediately with Lucy, but I do like her. And I do like she's an older character with experiences under her belt. I'm worried this series will flounder because the town is so tiny. I like a lot of great side characters to help move the story along and add depth and richness. And humor. The Knitting series has plenty of those, so maybe we'll meet more in the Book series. Bonus for adding Rafe, Silvia, and Agnes to create a crossover. Can never hate my favorite characters making an appearance in a connecting series.

Bea: I also like the interconnecting characters and the fact that the appearance of Rafe, Sylvia, and Agnes made sense and wasn't random. Although, now that I think about it, it might not make sense if you haven't read the originating series. The tiny town is a concern; it runs the risk of turning into Murder, She Wrote.

World Building

Bea: I'm not sure it can be read apart from the original series; maybe it could. Warren did further the world building and I have learned a lot more about witches now, especially their governance.

AVR: The one thing I like about this over the Knitting series is the witch stuff. I learned more because Quinn takes it seriously. That's one thing that pisses me off about Lucy. She keeps blowing her witchiness off. Gah!

Bea: I did like learning more about the witch business, and getting a closer look at it. I agree about Lucy; she needs to take it more seriously. Quinn is more serious about it and far more accomplished.

Overall

Bea: It took a while to warm up to Quinn. She's a good person and a good witch, most of the time. But she rubbed me the wrong way at times. I love that she's a middle aged character. The older I get, the more I love seeing characters closer to my age.

AVR: The story was a bit slow to get off the ground, but it is the first book and any series needs to start somewhere. Once the groundwork was laid it cruised along at a decent rate. The reveal seemed a bit iffy and I'm not quite sure about where this maybe romance is heading between Quinn and Lachlan, but I'll reserve judgment for now. I'm looking forward to book 2.

Bea: Agreed, it was slow to get going but it slowly picked up steam. I'm not sure how authentic the depiction is of an Irish village but it's a charming locale. I was not a fan of the reveal; it was over the top. It was a nod to classic mystery reveals but too contrived for my liking. I concerns about the viability of the series but I like the location despite my concerns and I like book store settings. The humor appeals to me and I'm intrigued by Quinn and the others. I'll be back for book two.
Source: imavoraciousreader.blogspot.com/2020/07/the-vampire-book-club.html
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review 2020-06-24 16:20
Adventures of a Vegan Vamp

Since I said I’d start reviewing or at least commenting on books I’ve read lately, I decided to randomly pick this title, since it struck me as funny. The actual book turned out to be fun, interesting and well written, so I felt I had to review/comment on this one.

Adventures of a Vegan Vamp: Volume 1 (Vegan Vamp Mysteries) Paperback
by Cate Lawley

 

Blurb, sort of:

 

Undead and vegan? Not the afterlife this girl had planned. Waking up thin is one thing. But waking up gaunt, hangry,and undead makes for a very bad day. Mallory's killer better hide, because she's just discovered blood, meat, and dairy don't agree with her, and a future with no cheese is grim indeed. She's out to find her killer...and maybe a vegan cheese that doesn't melt her nose hairs. Click to see how Mallory conquers a killer hunger while hunting a deadly vampire.

Since I’m vegan myself, I thought this was funny. Not that Mallory is strictly speaking, vegan. More like vegetarian, but it’s still quite fun. And normally I don’t even like vampire stories. This was a bit different. Not so much of the cliches. Well, since I don’t read vampire stories I can’t say for sure what they are like, but I think there aren’t that many cliches in this one. Mallory is ok. Maybe not someone I love, but I definitely liked her enough to keep reading.

The book isn’t free anymore, but in paperback it’s not that expensive and if you sign up for an Audible trial, you can listen to it for free anyway. Personally, I’m not that much into audio books either, but I know many people are.

So if you like mysteries and books that aren’t that dark and depressing, I think you’ll enjoy this.

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review 2020-06-13 08:10
New Release Blitz - Come On Get Lucky

Title: Come On, Get Lucky
Author: Jacqueline Rohrbach
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: June 8, 2020
Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 59300
Genre: Paranormal, LGBTQIA+, werewolf, vampire, best friends to lovers, humor, sarcasm, socially awkward character, slow burn-UST, men with pets
 

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Synopsis

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Grant is looking for love, but there’s one big problem—himself. Due to Grant’s massive size, not to mention the fact he’s also a werewolf, all the eligible bachelors steer clear of him, preferring men who are a little less ginormous and a lot less monstrous. Only Lee, Grant’s best friend and vampire extraordinaire, sees him as a gentle giant who longs to give awesome backrubs, cupcakes, and endless affection to his lifelong mate.
 
Lee is tired of the same old song and dance of dating and then breaking up. The only steady presence in his life has been Grant, a tried-and-true friend who always knows what to say and the right spot to scratch. So, when Grant finally breaks up with his flighty boyfriend, Lee sees an opportunity to let his carefully guarded heart out of its box and try for something real and lasting.
 
There’s a problem, though: Lee has always forbidden romance between friends, an order he’s drilled into Grant’s head over and over again.
 
That means Lee might need to throw their friendship to the fire. To find passion, they’ll have to become enemies. To find love, they’ll have to get lucky.
 
 

Excerpt

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Come On, Get Lucky
Jacqueline Rohrbach © 2020
All Rights Reserved
 
Chapter One
 
Grant wiped sweat from his brow. Hands trembling, he struggled to maneuver the oversized shirt button into its tiny hole. It was like being a virgin all over again. Should he lube the damn thing? Would that make it glide right in to everyone’s satisfaction? Scratch those thoughts; Grant couldn’t afford a sexual itch right now. If he stiffened, he might have a stress boner all night in the fancy restaurant where he’d booked a table for two. And, oh Jesus, everything was a mess. A total, awful mess.
 
“Knock, knock, big guy,” Lee said, tapping on the wood frame of the doorway. “You almost ready?”
 
“Come on in. Help me out. Get this thing in there.”
 
“Goodness, dear heart. I hope you won’t have to say that tonight.”
 
“I’m trying to not think about sex!”
 
“Boring.”
 
As lithe and graceful as Grant was bulky and clunky, Lee glided in on a cloud of glitter and sarcasm. His slender fingers made quick work of the task, and before Grant knew it, his dress shirt was smoothed down the length of his torso and tucked neatly into his black slacks. Standing to the side, his palm supporting his chin, Lee inspected his handiwork. Grant, for his part, stood straight under his critical eye and endeavored not to dwell on the lingering tingle along his spine where Lee’s fingers had touched him.
 
Muttering and twirling his finger, Lee said, “Turn around.”
 
Grant rarely dressed to the nines because it made him feel like he was ten. Lee, who searched him over for any flaw, didn’t help matters, especially not when he tsked like a disappointed mother.
 
“Well, do I pass inspection?” Grant asked him.
 
“Oh, you’re delish. Real wagyu beef.”
 
Grant dipped his head and made a show of inspecting his shoes to hide the sudden rush of heat to his face, which no doubt stained his cheeks a telltale shade of alarm-bell red. Then, to his mortification, he noticed a toe poking through a hole in one of his socks. Shit, he’d forgotten his shoes. Disaster. This night was going to be a total disaster.
 
Practically hyperventilating, Grant asked, “Where are my wingtips? The nice ones.”
 
Lee tapped his chin. Casually, as though he’d organized Grant’s closet himself, he kicked—literally—the polished wingtips onto the bedroom floor. “There are your big, goofy shoes. But, trust me, tonight is a big mistake. David is not the one. ”
 
“Thanks! You’re a lifesaver. I don’t know what I’d do without you.”
 
“Yes, I know you couldn’t manage without me. But don’t ignore my warning.”
 
Wagging his finger in Lee’s face, Grant said, “No, no. We’re not playing the David-is-no-good game tonight. Tell me what wine should I order, instead.”
 
“Are you asking me what pairs nicely with showing your flighty, dimwitted boyfriend your werewolf form?”
 
Exasperated, Grant said, “I’m bringing this one home for good, Lee.”
 
Relenting with a sigh, Lee flounced around the bedroom, windmilling his arms in dramatic fashion as though getting ready to run a marathon. Was he stretching? Yes, yes he was. Lee hadn’t surrendered: he was ramping up to continue the fight. Grant should have learned to not underestimate his best friend when it came to matters of the heart, which he saw as his expertise as a vampire. The undead, according to him, had their fingers on the pulse of life. Werewolves, well, they had their noses in its crotch. The long-term rivalry between their species was great. Truly.
 
Ever since Grant brought David home, Lee had gone on about how it was a poor fit. Things heated up between them when David farted and blamed Lee. Fangs out, Lee had said, “Vampires can’t even pass gas. He’s messing with the wrong Edward. I will glitter bomb his ass to hell. My sunlight sparkle will burn out his eyes.” From there, matters got worse.
 
“You’re being petty,” Grant said, dabbing a bit of cologne on his neck. “Get over the whole fart thing. He was nervous. That’s all.”
 
“This is more than passing gas, dear heart. Although your little beau does disturb the oxygen balance of the room.”
 
“You’re a brat.”
 
Lee said, “I know, dear heart. That doesn’t change anything. David is… David is yuck. I’d eat him but it’s an affront to my sensitive palate. Blah.”
 
“Say ‘blah’ again but do it in a Transylvanian accent.”
 
“If I do, you have to listen to my rant. You can’t block me out, not even for a second.”
 
Grant’s inner survivalist debated the merits of the proposal. On one hand, the Transylvanian accent version of blah never failed to put a smile on his face, and he could use a bit of humor to settle his nerves before his big date. On the other, Lee’s rants lasted as long as an immortal desired, which was a very long time indeed. Grant couldn’t gnaw his foot off to get out of the trap should he decide to walk into it.
 
“Decisions, decisions,” Lee said as a taunt without bite.
 
“You make it so hard.”
 
“That’s what all the guys say.”
 
Grant stifled a laugh. “Go ahead with the rant. I couldn’t stop you if I tried, so I may as well get something out of it.”
 
“Okay, dear heart, I will keep it short. David is not your mate. He’s a loser obsessed with the occult. You’re…well, you’re a trophy to him, something to talk about over tea with his friends. You think he’s sugar, but he’s NutraSweet. You don’t know what he’s made of, but it’ll probably give you cancer. Stop putting him in your body and find the real thing.”
 
“Feel better?” Grant asked, trying to keep his tone light. Although Lee’s tongue was plenty sharp, he’d blunted it for Grant’s sake. Plus, sniping at his friend never got Grant anywhere other than thoroughly tongue-lashed. Still, he’d be a lousy future mate if he didn’t come to his sweetheart’s defense. “I know you two don’t get along, but he loves me.”
 
“You don’t need more heartbreak.”
 
“I’m a great big werewolf. I’ll be fine.”
 
“You’re mostly fluff.”
 
“Tell that to my previous boyfriends.”
 
Lee clucked his tongue. “It’s not your fault they don’t know the difference between a monster and someone who can do monstrous things. They were ninnies.”
 
Grant’s facial muscles clenched. He didn’t want to talk about his last two boyfriends, both of whom knew he was a werewolf in advance and said they were fine with it, even excited. People had known of the existence of werewolves for years, after all. None of that mattered. As soon as he’d shown them his wolf form, their minds changed and he became a monster in their eyes. The pain of it, still fresh, seared away the confidence he’d built over the last few minutes.
 
Things weren’t much better for Lee. He and his boyfriend broke up after Lee refused to have his fangs pulled in order to spend a mortal life together. Too bad Lee had a rule against dating friends; otherwise, Grant might have suggested they give each other a chance—two monster peas in a pod. The wistful thought, still painful after six years, roiled around in his heart.
 
“This is going to be different,” Grant said, trying to work up his courage and take his mind off his conflicting thoughts. “David is different.”
 
“No, he’s heartache and trouble. And, truthfully, he’s not worth either of those things. Also, blah, I vant to suck your blood. Blah. There, I did it. You’re welcome.”
 
Normally, Grant thanked the heavens his father hooked up with a vamp and that meeting had introduced him to Lee. Truthfully, Grant couldn’t have picked a better brother, which is how he had to think of his eccentric vampire friend. Right now, however, he’d trade the meddlesome motormouth for a stack of beans—magic optional.

Purchase

NineStar Press | Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

Come On, Get LuckyCome On, Get Lucky by Jacqueline Rohrbach
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Grant is an amazing police officer. If only he could translate that to his personal and love life. His best friend, Lee is able to be fun and get out there. Why is it so hard to find someone?

Lee wants to help his best friend. He sees Grant as a gentle giant, and wants to help him meet someone worthy of his time and attention. Lee himself has had issues with finding someone for himself as well. Can two best friends help each other find true love?

This book was funny and charming. With a little crazy thrown in for good measure. I will not spoil the story, but I will tell you there is a little bit of everything in there. I found the humor to be silly, the banter to be fun, and the lead characters to be great to read. I found myself rooting for them pretty early on in the book.


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

View all my reviews

 

 

 

Meet the Author

 

Jacqueline Rohrbach is a 36-year-old creative writer living in windy central Washington. When she isn’t writing strange books about bloodsucking magical werewolves, she’s baking sweets, or walking her two dogs, Nibbler and Mulder. She also loves cheesy ghost shows, especially when the hosts call out the ghost out like he wants to brawl with it in a bar. You know, “Come out here, you coward! You like to haunt little kids. Haunt me!” Jackee laughs at this EVERY time.
 
She’s also a hopeless World of Warcraft addict. In her heyday, she was a top parsing disc priest. She became a paladin to fight Deathwing, she went back to a priest to cuddle pandas, and then she went to a shaman because I guess she thought it would be fun to spend an entire expansion underpowered and frustrated. Boomchicken for Legion! You can find Jacqueline on  Twitter.

 

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