Thursday, 24 May 2018

#CoverCrush Black Bird of the Gallows by Meg Kassel

For new visitors do I want to explain that Cover Crush is something that my friend Erin over at Flashlight Commentary came up with and I adopted the idea together with some other friends. And, now we try to put up a Cover Crush every week. You can check below my pick of the week for their choices this week!

A dark psychological romance perfect for fans of Holly Black or Maggie Stiefvater, whose yet to be published sequel won the Golden Heart ® for Best Young Adult Romance.

A simple but forgotten truth: Where harbingers of death appear, the morgues will soon be full. Harbingers settle in places where tragedy is about to strike, then feed on the energy of the dying. Then, they leave. Off to the next doomed place. No one wants a family of harbingers of death as neighbors, but that’s exactly what seventeen-year-old Angie Dovage gets when Reece Fernandez moves in next door.

Angie knows the mysterious boy is more than he appears, but can’t imagine that his presence heralds a massive tragedy that will soon devastate the region. She has more to worry about than Reece’s inevitable departure, because where harbingers of death go, the Beekeepers follow. Their sting turns sane people crazy, kind people into killers. Where Beekeepers go, people die. Quite horribly, in fact. Their love of chaos makes a disaster that much harder to survive, and they are stinging at will, causing a sudden epidemic of violence in her quiet mining town.

Angie wants to protect everyone she cares about, but stopping the Beekeepers involves a choice that will claim her life or Reece’s soul. She’s about to learn the price of both.

Thoughts:

I don't read much YA nor romance, but hell this cover is so striking that I could perhaps make an exception. That's what I like to see a cover that makes you wanna read genres you usually don't read...

Check out what my friends have picked for Cover Crush's this week:

Stephanie @ Layered Pages





Friday, 18 May 2018

#BookReview Ike and Kay by James MacManus @jamesmac1x @FreshFiction @overlookpress #FFreview

Ike and Kay: A Novel by James MacManus
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In his latest historical novel Ike and Kay, acclaimed author James MacManus brings to life an unbelievably true and controversial romance and the poignant characters and personalities that shaped the course of world history.

In 1942, Kay Summersby’s life is changed forever when she is conscripted to drive General Eisenhower on his fact-finding visit to wartime London. Despite Eisenhower’s marriage to Mamie, the pair takes an immediate liking to each other and he buys Kay a rare wartime luxury: a box of chocolates.

So begins a tumultuous relationship that, against all military regulation, sees Kay traveling with Eisenhower on missions to far-flung places before the final assault on Nazi Germany. The general does dangerously little to conceal his affair with the woman widely known as “Ike’s shadow,” and in letters Mamie bemoans his new obsession with “Ireland.” That does not stop him from using his influence to grant Kay citizenship and rank in the US army, drawing her closer still when he returns to America. When officials discover Eisenhower’s plans to divorce from his wife they threaten the fragile but passionate affair, and Kay is forced to take desperate measures to hold onto the man she loves . . .

Based on the scandalous true story of General Eisenhower’s secret World War II love affair, Ike and Kay is a compelling story of love, duty, sacrifice, and heartbreak, set against the backdrop of the most tumultuous period of the twentieth century.


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I thought I would start this review by mentioning that I previously read THE GENERAL'S WOMEN by Susan Wittig Albert, which deals with the same subject as this book, although Mamie Eisenhowever plays a larger role in that book. Nevertheless, in my opinion, one can't get enough books if the subjects interest you. So it was with eagerness I looked forward to reading this book.

READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW OVER AT FRESH FICTION!

Thursday, 17 May 2018

#CoverCrush: Bellewether by Susanna Kearsley

For new visitors do I want to explain that Cover Crush is something that my friend Erin over at Flashlight Commentary came up with and I adopted the idea together with some other friends. And, now we try to put up a Cover Crush every week. You can check below my pick of the week for their choices this week!

A magical new masterpiece from New York Times bestselling author Susanna Kearsley! A rich, haunting tale that will draw you in and never let you go 

"The house, when I first saw it, seemed intent on guarding what it knew; but we all learned, by the end of it, that secrets aren't such easy things to keep."

It's the summer of 1759, and the world is at war. Times are complicated, as are the loyalties of many in New York who have secretly been playing a treacherous game of cat-and-mouse with their British rulers. In this world of conflict and secrecy, a young captured French Canadian lieutenant is billeted with a Long Island family, only to find himself drawn more and more to the daughter of the house. He cannot speak her language, but he can see into her soul. Legend has it that their love ended tragically, but centuries later, a young historian discovers that the clues they left behind might slowly unveil the true story.
Thoughts:

I find this cover to be very magical. I love the tree that reflects in what I assume to be water and looking closer now do I see that there is a woman standing by the tree. This is the first time I've seen the woman. That is what I love with covers, that you can discover new things.  

Check out what my friends have picked for Cover Crush's this week:

Stephanie @ Layered Pages





#BlogTour: The Tudor Trilogy by Tony Riches @hfvbt @TonyRiches

Owen (The Tudor Trilogy #1) by Tony Riches

Publication Date: July 26, 2015
Preseli Press
eBook & Paperback; 318 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Based on the true story of a forgotten hero, OWEN is the epic tale of one young man’s incredible courage and resilience as he changes the course of English history. 

England 1422: Owen Tudor, a Welsh servant, waits in Windsor Castle to meet his new mistress, the beautiful and lonely Queen Catherine of Valois, widow of the warrior king, Henry V. Her infant son is crowned King of England and France, and while the country simmers on the brink of civil war, Owen becomes her protector. 

They fall in love, risking Owen’s life and Queen Catherine’s reputation—but how do they found the dynasty which changes British history – the Tudors? 

This is the first historical novel to fully explore the amazing life of Owen Tudor, grandfather of King Henry VII and the great-grandfather of King Henry VIII. Set against a background of the conflict between the Houses of Lancaster and York, which develops into what have become known as the Wars of the Roses, Owen’s story deserves to be told. 

Owen - Book One of the Tudor Trilogy is a new addition to story of the Tudors in the historical fiction tradition of C J Sansom, Conn Iggulden, Philippa Gregory and Hilary Mantel.

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble

Jasper (The Tudor Trilogy #2) by Tony Riches

Publication Date: March 22, 2016
Preseli Press
eBook & Paperback; 360 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Following the best-selling historical fiction novel OWEN – Book One of The Tudor Trilogy, this is the story, based on actual events, of Owen’s son Jasper Tudor, who changes the history of England forever. 

England 1461: The young King Edward of York has taken the country by force from King Henry VI of Lancaster. Sir Jasper Tudor, Earl of Pembroke, flees the massacre of his Welsh army at the Battle of Mortimer’s Cross and plans a rebellion to return his half-brother King Henry to the throne. 

When King Henry is imprisoned by Edward in the Tower of London and murdered, Jasper escapes to Brittany with his young nephew, Henry Tudor. Then after the sudden death of King Edward and the mysterious disappearance of his sons, a new king, Edward’s brother Richard III takes the English Throne. With nothing but his wits and charm, Jasper sees his chance to make young Henry Tudor king with a daring and reckless invasion of England. 

Set in the often brutal world of fifteenth century England, Wales, Scotland, France, Burgundy and Brittany, during the Wars of the Roses, this fast-paced story is one of courage and adventure, love and belief in the destiny of the Tudors.

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble

Henry (The Tudor Trilogy #3) by Tony Riches

Publication Date: May 17, 2017
Preseli Press
eBook & Paperback; 320 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Finalist for the Amazon Storyteller Award 2017 

Bosworth 1485: After victory against King Richard III, Henry Tudor becomes King of England. Rebels and pretenders plot to seize his throne. The barons resent his plans to curb their power and he wonders who he can trust. He hopes to unite Lancaster and York through marriage to the beautiful Elizabeth of York. 

With help from his mother, Lady Margaret Beaufort, he learns to keep a fragile peace. He chooses a Spanish Princess, Catherine of Aragon, as a wife for his son Prince Arthur. His daughters will marry the King of Scotland and the son of the Emperor of Rome. It seems his prayers are answered, then disaster strikes and Henry must ensure the future of the Tudors.

"A fine end to a superbly researched and well-written trilogy, one I would recommend to anyone with an interest in this period of history." Best-selling author Terry Tyler

"Henry was a hazy, cold impression in my mind, but Tony Riches fills him out, gives him intelligence, compassion, human frailty, and a consuming love of country, and I ended the book with great admiration for this man." Author Noelle Granger

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble

About the Author

Tony Riches is a full-time writer and lives with his wife in Pembrokeshire, West Wales. After several successful non-fiction books, Tony turned to novel writing and wrote 'Queen Sacrifice', set in 10th century Wales, followed by 'The Shell', a thriller set in present day Kenya. A specialist in the history of the early Tudors, he is best known for his Tudor Trilogy. Tony’s other international best sellers include 'Warwick ~ The Man Behind the Wars of the Roses' and 'The Secret Diary of Eleanor Cobham'.

For more information please visit Tony's website and his blog The Writing Desk. He can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule


Monday, May 14 
Review at 100 Pages a Day (Owen) 

Tuesday, May 15 
Review at Pursuing Stacie (Owen) 

Wednesday, May 16 
Guest Post at On the Tudor Trail 

Thursday, May 17 
Feature at A Bookaholic Swede 

Friday, May 18 
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit (Jasper) 

Monday, May 21 
Review at Just One More Chapter (Owen) 

Tuesday, May 22 
Review at Pursuing Stacie (Jasper) 

Thursday, May 24 
Guest Post at Short Book and Scribes 

Friday, May 25 
Review at Donna's Book Blog (Owen) 

Monday, May 28 
Review at A Darn Good Read (Owen) 
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit (Henry) 

Tuesday, May 29 
Review at Pursuing Stacie (Henry) 
Review at A Darn Good Read (Jasper) 

Wednesday, May 30 
Review at Jaffa Reads Too (Owen) 

Thursday, May 31 
Review at A Darn Good Read (Henry) 
Review at Donna's Book Blog (Jasper) 

Friday, June 1 
Review at Hoover Book Reviews (Owen) 

Monday, June 4 
Review at Donna's Book Blog (Henry) 

Tuesday, June 5 
Feature at Passages to the Past 

Thursday, June 7 
Review at Maiden of the Pages (All 3 Books)

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away an eBook & Signed Paperback of each book! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on June 7th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.
  Tudor Trilogy

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

#BookReview The Dark Angel by Elly Griffiths @HMHbooks

The Dark Angel by Elly Griffiths
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It’s not every day that you’re summoned to the Italian countryside on business, so when archaeologist Angelo Morelli asks for Ruth Galloway’s help identifying bones found in the tiny hilltop town of Fontana Liri, she jumps at the chance to go, bringing her daughter along with her for a working vacation. Upon arriving, she begins to hear murmurs of Fontana Liri’s strong resistance movement during World War II and senses the townspeople are dancing around a deeply buried secret. But how could that be connected to the ancient remains she’s been studying?

Ruth is just beginning to get her footing in the dig when she’s thrown off-guard by the appearance of DCI Nelson. And when Ruth’s findings lead them to a modern-day murder, their holidays are both turned upside down, and they race to find out what darkness is lurking in this seemingly picturesque town.

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If there were an award for the most annoying characters in a book series (that you keep reading, despite the fact) would I award it to Ruth Galloway & DCI Harry Nelson. Sorry, to everyone that loves the series, but Ruth inner monologue about how fat she is and how religion sucks, etc. just rubs me the wrong way. Nelson's thoughts aren't much better. So, when you look at it do they fit very well together. To bad that Nelson is married and his wife is pregnant, although the father of the baby could be Nelson or Michelle's lover. Yeah, it's like a soap opera. The personal stuff is probably why I keep reading the books, it's so melodramatic.

I found The Dark Angel to be OK. To set most of the story in Italy was a nice move and I came to enjoy most of the book, yes, there were too much ranting inner monologues, but part of me has gotten used to it and I have started to look forward to seeing how many times Ruth can think that she is fat or that all the other women are so beautiful. As for the case, I have to admit that I was wrong about the ending, I had my mind set on a different conclusion on the storyline in Italy. I quite like the fact that I was wrong, kudos to the author.

Back in England is a man released from prison that swore to get revenge on DCI Nelson, but the man in question has found God, or so he claims. Nelson isn't sure, and he's worried the man would do something to him or any of the other's involved with the case. But, then he learns that an earthquake has occurred in Italy where Ruth and his daughter are staying and he leaves his pregnant wife and daughter behind to go to Italy. Leaving them all alone...

The Dark Angel is better than the previous book. I told myself that I would give this series one more chance and I'm actually glad that I read the book, and yes I will read the next. Especially since the book ended with a cliffhanger...

I want to thank Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for providing me with a free copy through Edelweiss for an honest review!

Sunday, 13 May 2018

#BookReview Black Fall by Andrew Mayne @AndrewMayne @HarperCollins

Black Fall by Andrew Mayne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In Black Fall, the third book in the ITW Award-nominated series that began with self-published eBook phenomenon Angel Killer, magician-turned-FBI agent Jessica Blackwood investigates a series of seemingly unrelated, but equally bizarre and sinister, crimes that lead her to the Colorado desert and a town that has, simply, disappeared.

With two big cases under her belt, FBI Agent Jessica Blackwood is learning to embrace her unconventional past as the rising star in a family dynasty of illusionists. Her talent and experience endow her with a unique understanding of the power and potential of deception, and a gift for knowing when things are not always as they appear to be. Once resenting her eccentric grandfather, a brilliant magician in his own right, Jessica now sees him as a mentor and regularly seeks his advice about her work.

But Jessica’s routine surveillance operation becomes a fight for survival when a disturbed young woman, clutching a baby, shows up at the stake-out location and threatens to kill her child. On the same day, an hour after a severe earthquake rocks the eastern seaboard, a strange video goes viral. Nobel Prize-winning physicist Peter Devon has been dead for eight years, yet here he is on camera, predicting the location and date of the earthquake. Jessica is put on the case by her boss, Dr. Ailes, but when Detective Aileen Lewis reports that they’ve found a Jane Doe who matches her description of her attacker, she’s torn between professional duty and a personal desire to find out who the woman was, and why she was killed.

The investigations pull her in very different directions—until they start to converge, leading Jessica to confront something darker, and more powerful, than anyone expected. Something so twisted, only one person could be behind it…the Warlock.


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I actually just finished reading book 1 (Angel Killer) in this series (Why read in order?) and now I'm kind of bummed that I have no more Jessica Blackwood books to read since this series have become a personal favorite of mine. Each book has stories that it will take ex-magician now FBI agent Jessica Blackwood to solve since the bureau needs someone that can think outside the box and that she can.

Black Fall has the best opening of all the three books I have read, with the missing town in Colorado. I mean WOW, what happened here? And, then the story shifts focus as Jessica is pulled into a new case when a young woman turns up at her doorstep clutching a baby and threatens to kill it. If that is not bad, long time dead physicist Peter Devon seems to be able to predict upcoming natural disasters in videos that go viral. Could this have something to do with Warlock? However, he's behind bars, not could even he mastermind this...?

This book is great, really really great. I love everything from the opening to the mystery of the dead physicist professor to the town that disappeared. And, Damian, Jessica oh so secret "boyfriend", who is wanted by the FBI, but is always there when Jessica needs him (even if she always alert FBI about it). Jessica Blackwood has become a favorite character of mine and this book is so engrossing. 

I really, really hope there will be more books in this series!

[Updated] May Schedule & Upcoming Readathon!

It's May 13 and so far have I managed to read some books from my May Schedule and other books (check out my Goodreads page). 

I'm actually impressed by myself out of the 9 I picked to read for this month have I now read 5 and some of them are already reviewed and up like The Crooked Staircase and The Retreat. And, The Dark Angel and Dying Truth will go live soon!

 

As for the Readathon (Bout of Books that starts 14 May) will I go for a lot of audiobooks since I'm working and of course eARCs! 

So, here are some books that I plan to read, which are the rest of the books I had earmarked for May! I've already started Wicked River, so I plan to finish that one soon. I have also added some older eARCs like The Marriage Pact (because I have the audiobook) and Wilde Lake that I also have as both eARC and audiobook (and that I've started to listen to) 



I will probably deviate from my list of books to read, and I've not added that many audiobooks since I tend to go with what I feel at the moment...

Friday, 11 May 2018

#BookReview Hämnaren (The Avenger) by Jan-Erik Fjell SWE/ENG

Hämnaren by Jan-Erik Fjell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

SWEDISH REVIEW

I 1960-talets San Francisco döms den norskättade sextonåringen Danny till livstid för väpnat rån och mordförsök på en polis. Han hamnar på det ökända fängelset Alcatraz. Drygt trettio år senare besöker ett norskt par det nu nedlagda fängelset och får höra den makalösa historien om den unga norrmannen.

I nutidens Fredrikstad hittas en tonårsmamma mördad. Anton Brekke, som degraderats till patrullerande polis, är en av de första som kommer till mordplatsen och han tar till alla medel för att få komma tillbaka som kriminalkommissarie och kunna lösa fallet.

Allt eftersom Brekke på egen hand nystar i trådarna inser han att fler offer står på tur, dessutom upptäcker han oroväckande kopplingar till historien om Danny.

Hämnaren är den tredje fristående boken om den självsäkra och oförskämda kriminalkommissarien Anton Brekke.


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Alcatraz. Jag måste erkänna att jag bara älskade att delar av berättelsen utsplades där. Jag menar Alcatraz, finns det det något mer berömt fängelse? Det skulle väl vara djävulsön då (se Dreyfusaffären), men personligen så är det något speciallt med Alcatraz. Vilket gjorde att jag fann denna bok alldeles fantastisk bra.

Nu är det två föregående böckerna också bra, så jag är väl inte så förvånad att denna bok även den var lysnade. Det är jättekul att läsa om Anton Brekke igen, nu delegerad pga av sitt pokerspelande. Och fallet med tonårsmamman som hittas mördad är egentligen inte hans fall, han är ju patrullerande  polis nu. Men Anton kan inte låta bli att undersöka fallet som växer och som blir allt större när fler dödas. Men vad är kopplingen och vad har Alcatraz med saken att göra? 

Hämnaren är nog min favoritboken i serien (än så länge). Båda historierna i boken var bra, den nutida om morden som Anton försöker lösa (trots att han inte egentligen ska göra det) samt bättelsen från 60-talet som utspelad på Alcatraz. Det är en kopplingen, men den får du själv lista ut! 

Tack HarperCollins Nordic för recensionsexemplaret!

ENGLISH REVIEW

San Francisco 1960s. Norwegian-born sixteen-year-old Danny is sentenced to a lifetime in prison for armed robbery and assassination of a police. He ends up at the infamous Alcatraz prison. Over thirty years later, a Norwegian couple is visiting the now closed prison and a man tells them the remarkable story of the young Norwegians.

In today's Fredrikstad, the single mother of a teenager is found murdered. Anton Brekke, who has been demoted to patrol, is one of the first to come to the murder scene and he takes all the means to get back as a detective inspector and be able to solve the case.

Brekke realizes that more people are going to die, and he also detects worrying links to the story of Danny.

The Revenge is the third stand-alone book about the confident and rude detective inspector Anton Brekke.

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Alcatraz. I have to admit that I loved the fact that part of the story took place in the famous prison. I mean Alcatraz, is there any more famous prison? It would be Devil's Island (see Dreyfus affair), but personally, I find that there it's something special with Alcatraz and that made me really appreciate this story.

The previous two books are really good so I wasn't surprised that this book turned out pt be really good as well. I had a blast reading this book and returning to Anton Brekke's world. I especially enjoyed that he has been degraded because of his poker obsession. The murder case is nothing that he should be working on, but he just can't stop himself from investigating it. And, the case keeps on getting more complicated as more people turn up dead and there seem to be something that connects the people that are killed, but what is the connection and what has Alcatraz to do with the killings?

I think that so far The Avenger is my favorite book about Brekke. I liked both the present murder case as well as the story from Alcatraz. And the great fun is to try to figure out what's the connection.

Thanks HarperCollins Nordic for the review copy!