logo
Currently Browsing: Rating B
Jul
27

Review: Destined for Doon by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon

Review: Destined for Doon by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon Please help TWITA welcome guest reviewer, Kymbo. An avid reader, Kymbo is also the teenaged daughter of our own Ang. Destined for Doon Author: Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon Guest Reviewer: Kymbo Rating: B What I’m Talking About: The first in this series, Doon, changed my perspective on fairytale/princess books altogether. I loved every minute of it. I am happy to say I was not disappointed at all with this sequel. Destined for Doon is anything but your basic fairytale. There is no damsel in distress who needs rescuing , no prince who comes to save her, nor a song after every major scene. Instead, this book is full of humor, musical references, heartbreaking teen romance, unbreakable friendship, and an evil witch that must be stopped. Although Destined for Doon was a strong sequel, I would not say it was without its imperfections. Between the two authors and the switching back and forth of perspectives after every chapter, I would say there were times where I felt as though the writing style simply didn’t work. There were moments where it would have flowed better to stick with once voice over another. Despite a few flaws, Destined for Doon was good considering it was a sequel, and although it wasn’t perfect I would still recommend it to fellow readers, especially considering it has stuck with me nearly two years after reading it. So go visit the world of Doon; you won’t be disappointed. My Rating:  B, Liked It ~Kymba~ About the Book: The second book in the popular new Doon YA series that takes on a classic story, Brigadoon, and spins it in a new way to give readers a fresh, modern experience. In this sequel to Doon, Kenna Reid realizes she made a horrible mistake-choosing to follow her dreams of Broadway instead of staying in the enchanted land of Doon. Worse, she’s received proof she and Duncan are meant to be, along with torturous visions of the prince she left behind. So when Duncan shows up and informs Kenna that Doon needs her, she doesn’t need to think twice. But even if Kenna can save the enchanted kingdom, her happily ever after may still be in peril. The Doon novels are a part of Blink, HarperCollins Christian Publishing’s new YA imprint that delivers empowering and heartening literature while maintaining a tradition of imaginative and impactful storytelling. Release Date: September 2, 2014 Publisher: Blink Series: Doon #2 Genre: Young Adult...
Read More
Jul
26

Review: Ultimate Courage by Piper J. Drake

Review: Ultimate Courage by Piper J. Drake Ultimate Courage Author: Piper J. Drake Reviewers: Gikany and Una Rating: B-/C+ What We’re Talking About: Ultimate Courage is the second novel in the new True Heroes series. Though we enjoy the premise and the nature of this series, this novel struck an off-note with Gikany and Una. You need not have read the first novel in the series, Extreme Honor, to be able to enjoy this one.  So far it seems that these can be read as standalone, but that may change as the series continues.  What we really love about this series is that there are two happily-ever-afters in each novel. Or, should we say, the happily-ever-after involves three characters, our main couple and a dog. In Ultimate Courage you have the journey of Elisa and Alex as well as Sousa’s journey. We really enjoy how Sousa is a main character, not just a plot device.  Each dog has had a personality of their own, along with their own coming-of-age/challenge to overcome on their road to a happy ending. Sousa was a great character.  This German Shepherd dog was an interesting character.  We enjoyed his instincts as well as his development.  Though it was a bit obvious to us what his calling was as a working dog, it was fun to watch as the “silly humans” figured it out.  Another character that we really liked was Boom, Alex’s daughter.  Her spunky personality, coupled with her care and concern for others, was touching.  We really enjoyed the warmth and humor she brought to the novel.  We also enjoyed seeing David and Lyn (the major couple from the first novel) again.  Additionally, the story gives us a bit of an introduction to the next couple. Unfortunately what fell flat with us was a major plot point in this story.  As many followers of our reviews will know, we are very particular when it comes to characters that have suffered abuse.  Especially violent or long-term abuse, the treatment of the abuse and how a character reacts to it can be a pet-peeve with us depending on how an author addresses it. Though Ms. Drake is not as cavalier as some have been, we still felt that Elisa’s abuse was not as fully fleshed-out as it should have been.  For a woman who was in a four-year relationship characterized by extreme emotional abuse with the immediate threat of physical abuse, we felt her emotional and physical involvement with Alex was rushed. ...
Read More
Jul
25

Review: Where the Wild Things Bite by Molly Harper

Review: Where the Wild Things Bite by Molly Harper Where the Wild Things Bite Author: Molly Harper Reviewer: Jen Twimom Rating: B+ What I’m Talking About: Human Anna Whitfield has many neuroses, yet pride in her work puts her on a plane to Half-Moon Hollow, where she is returning a rare and valuable book to her client, Jane Jameson. Unfortunately for Anna, there are others who want the book, going as far as crashing the plane to get what they want. Luckily (or not) for Anna, vampire Finn Palmeroy is on the plane, and he saves her moments before the plane explodes. Lost in the woods in the middle of Kentucky, the pair cannot agree on anything, yet there is an attraction sizzling between them. Where the Wild Things Bite is another fun tale in the humorous Half-Moon Hollow paranormal romance series. Taking place mostly outside of Half-Moon Hollow, the major of the book focuses solely Anna and Finn as they try to make their way back to civilization while being hunted by some crazy shifters. This allows plenty of time for the couple, and therefore the reader, to get to know one another and build a relationship. I enjoyed their dynamic; a mix between light bickering and genuine care and consideration. What I had troubles with is that Finn is a con artist who lied many times. Readers first met him in the previous book, The Single Undead Mom’s Club, and he was basically a creep in that one. It was tough for me to put aside his behavior in the previous book, as well as his actions in this one. With that said, he did have moments of tenderness, and I did believe his feelings for Anna to be true, however, in the back of my mind, there was always a small doubt. Regardless of the issues I had with Finn, the book was engrossing. At one point, I looked down and was surprised to see that I was already at the 82% mark of the book. The story flowed smoothly and the story interesting, so I hadn’t realized how much of the book had passed. Additionally, the couple, while cute and fun, didn’t bring on the heat. This is definitely a romance-lite tale. Finally, the ending was quick and easy, and a tad outrageous, but fitting for the light-hearted nature of this series. In the end, Where the Wild Things Bite is another humorous romp through Half-Moon Hollow and beyond. Ms. Harper brings her trademark...
Read More
Jul
21

Listen Up! #Audiobook Review: Love So True by Marquita Valentine

Listen Up! #Audiobook Review: Love So True by Marquita Valentine Welcome to my weekly feature that focuses on audiobooks. It’s time to… Book: Love So True Author: Marquita Valentine Narrator: Piper Goodeve Audio Speed: 1.25x Series: Lawson Brothers #2 Genre: Contemporary Romance Source: purchased What I’m Talking About Love So True is the second story in the small town contemporary romance series based on the good-looking and hard-working Lawson brothers. This time around, the story focuses on Prodigal Son, Lucas Lawson, who served five years in prison for his participation in an investment scandal that emptied the pockets of several of Jessamine’s residents. The one thing that kept him going was the memory of Bailey Yates’s smile. Bailey, a single mom who has had her own share of bad choices and sideways looks from the town’s residents, sees how Lucas has changed and gives him a chance. While Lucas doesn’t feel deserving, he is humble and accepts her help. And although both agree hooking up would be a bad idea, they can’t help themselves. I really enjoyed Love So True. I loved how vulnerable both Bailey and Lucas are, but each is ready to take life by the reins and do what they want. And while I was so worried that this book, like its predecessor, would focus on the many external issues that could tear them apart, my fears were for naught. Ms. Valentine does a marvelous job keeping the focus of the book on the developing romance between Bailey and Lucas, and as pair, how they deal with the hurdles and obstacles in their way. And unlike the first book in this series, the issues between Bailey and Lucas didn’t feel contrived and were dealt with in a mature and timely manner. The narration by Piper Goodeve is good, but still not great for me. I enjoy Ms. Goodeve’s narrative voice, as well as her female characters, bringing in a mix of the sweet south combined with thoughtfulness. But her male characters are too soft and gentle for my liking. The male voices just don’t seem to fit the characters as well, especially when being romantic or trying to take charge. Overall, Love So True is a delightful romance that is full of heart. My rating: B+ Narration: B-...
Read More
Jul
18

Review + Giveaway: Top to Bottom by Delphine Dryden

Review + Giveaway: Top to Bottom by Delphine Dryden Top to Bottom Author: Delphine Dryden Reviewer: Jen Twimom Rating: B- What I’m Talking About: Mistress Amie lives day-to-day without attachments. She loves her job at the gym, but the only person she has any type of bond with is her ex, Mara, whom she’s sent away for good to a new club, Escape. She used to love the crowd and scenes at her current club, but now, the club just feels drama-filled and tired. Dru is determined to make club Escape work. On her own, she seeks the advice of her onetime college partner, Amie, to help the club break even. What she didn’t expect is to have feelings for Amie, even after their initial reunion left little to be desired. Top to Bottom is a love story of two women finding their way back to one another after many years. Although the years in between college and current day were filled with significant life trials, shaping each woman into someone slightly different and a bit stronger. Top to Bottom shares the final stage of each female’s development; both taking that final step to heal and love. Amie’s wild and crazy ways condemned her to homelessness when her family discovered her kissing another girl. With all of her college friends gone, Amie struggled until she found her first job. Understanding the hardship and humiliation of living on the streets, and the pain of loneliness after being cast out by her family, Amie doesn’t trust easily. Dru gives her balance and a safe place to share herself. While I found the falling (back) into love part a bit too easy, or rather than it felt like it happened under the radar, it was still believable because of the pair’s dynamic when we did see them together, opening up and therefore, growing. Dru pushes Amie with just the right amount of determination, until Amie realizes she can trust again. Meanwhile, Dru has lived a pretty good life, until she lost her partner. Opening the club was their dream, and Dru is determined to make it work. However, someone is out to ruin her and/or her club, and giving up may be the easier option. At times I felt like Dru saw Amie as a case to manage – something broken to be fixed – and that’s what drove the relationship. However, it was done because she cared, and she was ready to move on with her life. Dru saw past...
Read More
Jul
15

Review: Romanced by a SEAL by Cat Johnson

Review: Romanced by a SEAL by Cat Johnson Romanced by a SEAL Author: Cat Johnson Reviewer: Jen Twimom Rating: B What I’m Talking About: Having watched Jon and Ali fall for one another in the first Hot SEALs book, Night with a SEAL, I was excited to read their follow up story in Romanced by a SEAL. As the book opens, Jon and Ali have been living together for a while, but their relationship is stagnant. Unknown to his teammates/friends and Ali, Jon decides to take an off-the-record job going undercover to infiltrate ISIS. Of course his secrecy is causing all sorts of tension at home. Overall, I enjoyed Romanced by a SEAL, especially since Jon and Ali’s initial story concluded with an HFN ending. The couple went through some major ups and downs in this one, tugging at my heart more than once. While the first half of the book focused on Jon’s mission and the troubles between the pair, the second half was a joy to read, following the couple as they worked through their very serious issues and communication breakdown. Once the pair started talking and working through things, I felt the tempo of the book improved, and I sunk into the story more. As per usual, Ms. Johnson’s attention to military detail is impressive. I appreciated the detail and (I’ll assume) accuracy of Jon’s situation as he went undercover. However, for me, it felt a bit misplaced in this romance story, especially since it is on the shorter side. Personally, I want more relationship building and less seriousness in the first half of the book. Jon’s situation was very delicate and extremely serious, and while the author does a very good job keeping the tone appropriate to the situation, I felt that the military storyline overtook the romance for too much of the book. In the end, Romanced by a SEAL was a delightful read, and the second half of the book made up for any issues I had in the earlier parts of the story. While I had a couple small issues, the author did a great job eventually addressing any matters that concerned me. I like that, overall, the storylines felt realistic yet HEA. My Rating:  B, Liked It About the Book: As a SEAL, Jon Rudnick dodged copper and lead without flinching, but just the thought of one tiny gold band around his ring finger sends him into a cold sweat. Love is one thing, but marriage is another. He’s...
Read More
Jul
13

Review: The Worse for Were by Abigail Owen

Review: The Worse for Were by Abigail Owen The Worse for Were Author: Abigail Owen Reviewers: Gikany and Una Rating: B- What We’re Talking About: The Worse for Were is the second novella in the Legendary Consultants series.  We regretfully did not read the previous novella, but were able to pick up this world quickly enough.  Even though we thought that Ms. Owen’s Shadowcat Nation series has a tighter and stronger mythology, we enjoyed this more casual approach to paranormal romance. Although The Worse for Were focuses on werewolf shifters, the mythology includes nymphs, gods, demigods, and fae.  We are not sure if there is more background information in the previous novel, but we thought that there might be some world building we may have missed.  We were able to fall into the world, although there were a couple of off-notes in the mythology that Gikany and Una were able to debate. We were distracted by the indiscriminate use of the word alpha. For us Alpha is a title while dominant denotes a demeanor or personality of the shifter. With the journey of two Alphas marrying for convenience, a prophecy, and the numerous paranormals in the mix, there was so much potential.  The personalities of Tala and Marrok, their banter and mating urge were wittily and passionately executed.  We understand that given the nature of a novella, there can only be so much background and plot weaving done.  However there is so much potential in this story we wished it had been made into a full novel.  The blending of Tala and Marrok’s packs (unless there is more to come) could have been far more complicated and intricate.  Knowing what Ms. Owen is capable of in her other series, we just wanted more.  Since this story is a novella, we can understand some of the jumps and skips. Overall, Gikany and Una liked this novella, although we thought it was noticeable that we jumped into the series.  We recommend that you read this series from the beginning.  We also thought that there was enough in the world and the plot for a fully fleshed out novel.  We are interested in reading the next story in this series. Our Rating:  B- Liked It, but we had a couple small issues About the Book: The Canis and Banes packs of werewolves have been feuding for centuries. The Hatfields and McCoys were a tea party in comparison. Until Marrok Banes, the Alpha of his pack, decides to end the fighting...
Read More
Jul
11

Review: Unwanted by Jennifer Estep

Review: Unwanted by Jennifer Estep Unwanted Author: Jennifer Estep Reviewer: Jen Twimom Rating: B What I’m Talking About: Unwanted is a delightful novella shared from the POV of Gin Blanco’s foster brother, Finnegan Lane, as he deals with the fallout from the events of the previous full-length story, Bitter Bite. Finn is not in a good place emotionally, feeling responsible for his mother’s horrible actions. He’s shunned by his coworkers, but takes the hit because of his guilt. Gin (and others) stand by him, silently showing support, hoping he’ll recover. Meanwhile, Finn’s astute boss requires Finn to attend each and every funeral of those bank employees that lost their lives in his mother’s attempted robbery. Seeing Finn in such a low place hurt me. He’s always been such an upbeat, happy guy; the comic relief in Gin’s overly serious life. He’s genuinely a good man, so knowing what his mother’s actions did to him, was emotionally taxing for me as well as Finn. Ms. Estep does a good job bringing Finn full circle, through helping the widow of a hardworking bank guard. Finn’s protective nature and generous heart find their way to the surface as he gets himself back in the game. Unwanted is the perfect bridge between Bitter Bite and the upcoming Unraveled because it gives Finn time to deal with his state of mind before getting back in the dangerous game of life among Ashland’s underworld. While the story could be read as a standalone, I strongly discourage it. Having known Finn for 14 books is what makes his story all the more enjoyable to readers; Unwanted is a heartfelt treat to longtime Finnegan fans. My Rating:  B, Liked It About the Book: The fallout from his disastrous “family reunion” in Bitter Bite has left Finn feeling hurt, angry, and depressed. He can barely stand to look at himself in the mirror, much less eat any of the delicious barbecue from Gin’s famed Pork Pit restaurant. But when the funeral for a slain security guard at his bank turns into a showdown with some nasty underworld giants, Finn knows that he must act in order to protect an innocent family. Finnegan Lane might be the most unwanted man in Ashland these days, but he’s determined to try to make amends for his past mistakes… Release Date: July 18, 2016 Publisher: Pocket Star Series: Elemental Assassins #14.5 Genre: Urban Fantasy, novella Format(s): e-book Book Source: NetGalley Purchase Info: Amazon Reviews in the Series:...
Read More
Jul
7

Listen Up! #Audiobook Review: Big Vamp on Campus by Molly Harper

Listen Up! #Audiobook Review: Big Vamp on Campus by Molly Harper Welcome to my weekly feature that focuses on audiobooks. It’s time to… Audiobook review: Big Vamp on Campus Author: Molly Harper Narrator: Amanda Ronconi Audio Speed: 1.25x Series: Half-Moon Hollow #5.5 Genre: Paranormal Romance Source: Purchased Big Vamp on Campus is a fun “slice of life” with a side of growing pains. We get to see how vampire baddie Ophelia Lambert is dealing with being cut off from her precious Council. It’s definitely not the best place to start the series, although I think it can be enjoyed by a newbie as a standalone short. However, to understand the full impact of Ophelia’s banishment, one really needs to see her when she was at her prime, welding power for the Council. I didn’t think I’d ever really like Ophelia; she certainly has never been a sympathetic character. And after what she did to Gigi back in The Dangers of Dating a Rebound Vampire, I honestly wasn’t looking forward to getting a story from her POV. However, leave it to Ms. Harper to pull this off. Not only do we see some of the brilliant crazed 400-year old vamp she used to be, but we witness Ophelia learn to adjust to life outside her comfort zone, growing and developing into a relatable, likable character. As I mentioned before, the book reads more like a slice of life or a few chapters from a larger story. New characters are introduced, and some strange and mysterious things are afoot – basically par for the course for the residents of Half-Moon Hollow. It’s pretty apparent that this novella is setting the stage for a larger story; however, it’s not the next book, Where the Wild Things Bite. It looks like Big Vamp on Campus actually comes after the next book. The narration by Amanda Ronconi is highly entertaining. In the past, I’ve struggled with keeping characters straight from book to book based on voice alone because each is a different first person POV narrative. However, because it’s been a while since I’ve listened to another book in the series, I didn’t experience any of that confusion, and found the narration to fit Ophelia’s personality. With just a touch of sarcasm and a whole lot of charm, Ms. Ronconi brings the denizens of Half-Moon Hollow to life (even when they are actually students at the University of Kentucky!) All-in-all, an enjoyable listen, entertaining story, and a must for fans of the Half-Moon Hollow series. Story Rating: B+ Narration:...
Read More
Jul
6

Review: It Happened One Doomsday by Laurence MacNaughton

Review: It Happened One Doomsday by Laurence MacNaughton It Happened One Doomsday Author: Laurence MacNaughton Reviewer: Nima Rating: B What I’m Talking About: It Happened One Doomsday is a quirky little read. It has sort of a campy feel to it.  Clearly this is the first in a new series and I will likely read at least the next installment when it comes out.  It’s not an outstanding first book, the writing flips between excellent description and repetitive metaphors, but it did get me to suspend my disbelief—which is no small task in contemporary fantasy.  I laughed when the main character Dru acknowledged that fact saying, “I can’t expect Nate to understand magic.  Hardly anyone believes in it, outside of actual sorcerers.”  The author has to make me believe his story is plausible and having been born in Berkeley, California, a store that sells crystals for healing and magical powers is entirely realistic.  A simple internet search will yield thousands of hits.  I allowed MacNaughton to build in my mind from that set-up. There isn’t a great deal of character development because it’s so action forward, but MacNaughton did succeed in creating sincere characters, especially Dru.  She was entirely genuine and charmingly unaware of her own talents.  Dru is also innately charitable, unable to help herself from helping others.  It’s a pleasant change in a main character.  She shares an unexpected bond with a mechanic, Greyson, who is turning into a demon because of his cursed car.  I hope we still like him when the next book comes out. The most badass character, even surrounded by demons, is a woman, Dru’s best friend Rane.  She was unwaveringly loyal, but so far one dimensional. Toss it in your pool bag, it’s a good single afternoon read for the summer. My Rating: B, Liked It About the Book: Magic is real. Only a handful of natural-born sorcerers can wield its arcane power against demons, foul creatures, and the forces of darkness. These protectors of the powerless are descendants of an elite order. The best magic-users in the world.  Unfortunately, Dru isn’t one of them. Sure, she’s got a smidge of magical potential. She can use crystals to see enchantments or brew up an occasional potion. And she can research practically anything in the library of dusty leather-bound tomes she keeps stacked in the back of her little store. There, sandwiched between a pawn shop and a 24-hour liquor mart, she sells enough crystals, incense, and magic charms to scrape...
Read More
Page 10 of 70« First...89101112...203040...Last »
logo
Powered by WordPress | Designed by Elegant Themes