Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Ghosts of Pebble Brook Lodge by Linda Covella

Pepper has had to move again.  Her parents refurbish homes, restaurants, even lodges.  They are also chefs.  Every time Pepper has made a new friend that she really likes, they move.  At least this time it's just some miles away, not states away.  She was doing OK with the change until she saw the ghost...

The author and Goddess Fish Blog Tours gave me a copy of this book to read for review (thank you).  You can buy a copy on Amazon now.

Pepper and her little sister explore the lodge but it's huge.  One unique thing about it is that a river runs through the restaurant.  It's pretty and soothing and not very deep.  It's also where a young girl died.  Pepper hears the story at a shop downtown and when she mentions it to her mother she confirms it's true.  Her little brother was accused of killing her and they say he's not right in the head.  He's an adult now and Pepper admires his skill at carving.  She also sees his gentle nature and thinks that he couldn't be a murderer.  But how to prove it?

This has a feel of the old fashioned mysteries I used to read as a child.  It's written for young adults and is a very pleasant read.  Pepper has the ability to see ghosts but she can't figure out what they are trying to tell her.  She finds four different ghosts and they all have part of the story.

Ms. Covella makes everything fit together smoothly.  There are scary moments and one evil ghost but Pepper prevails.  There's plenty of action and her words carried me down the trail to the end of the story with anticipation of how it would end.

This is the second in this series and I'm sure there will be more to come.  It will be fun to see Pepper grow up and conquer more challenges.

Linda Covella will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.  Enter HERE.

Encourage your readers to follow the tour and comment; the more they comment, the better their chances of winning. The tour dates can be found HERE.

Good luck and happy reading!

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Secrets She Kept (Fairham Island #2) by Brenda Novak

Josephine is a toxic parent.  She is totally focussed on herself.  She keeps herself in shape, fixes any little flaws, has money, image and power in her world and she has no patience for anyone who might make her look bad, including her children...  

Mira Books sent me an ARC of this book to read for review (thank you).  It will be published tomorrow and you can grab a copy then.  Or you could win my ARC!  See the last paragraph for how to enter the giveaway.
When she's found dead in her bathtub, her son knows she didn't commit suicide.  That was too messy and she never accepted any blame sent her way.  She was on a trip to Australia the next day.  She was even packed to go.  He and she might not have gotten along well, but he knows she was too proud to be found that way after death.  She would have been wearing good clothing and been made up and on the bed with her hands crossed.  No ignominious death for her.  The police chief and the coroner don't agree, so he goes home to handle it...

Keith had been involved with drugs but by moving away to California, working out like crazy and starting his own business, he managed to stay away from them.  Now that he's back home, his sisters worry about him.  He tells them he's been clean for five years but they worry.  He's executor of the estate, so he'll be around for a while.  Especially since he's trying to prove she was murdered.

Josephine had secrets from the past.  They had found that out in the previous book, when they discovered they had an older sister she never talked about.  They had located her and the family was complete now.  But there was another secret she never told.  And she lived a false life as well.

While Josephine was not a good mother, she did teach them life skills trying to stay ahead of her or away from her.  No one was all that sad that she died.  They regretted the lack of a healthy relationship with her but not her death.  Keith was right, though.  She had been murdered.  And it takes all the efforts of the siblings to solve the mystery.

This was a romantic mystery with dysfunctional people and death intertwined.  There's a lot of trauma but it was a good read overall.

I will be giving away the ARC I read.  To enter the contest, leave a comment here on the blog and email me:  info at www.bookfaerie.com.  Send me your name and address and I will pull a name out of a hat in a week.  Here's a chance for a free read!

A Deadly Affection by Cuyler Overholt

Genevieve has become a doctor as her father wished.  However, she's specializing in psychology and her father would have preferred a medical doctor degree.  He's willing to let her try, though.  He just doesn't understand how far she is willing to go to help her patients.

Sourcebooks Landmark and Edelweiss let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published September 6th.

This is a Victorian mystery and the first in a new series.  The author gets very detailed in descriptions of the past as well as the present.  It read a bit slowly but it was interesting and kept me going.  One thing that happens as Genevieve tries to prove her patient did not kill the doctor is that everyone lies when it's convenient.  It could be to protect her, to save her being hurt, or because it benefits them but she can't even trust her own father.

The women she's seeing are all women suffering physical illnesses from caused by traumatic situations.  This can range from a crib death, to sudden death of a spouse, or loss of a parent.  The ladies get so upset they start having physical symptoms.  She hopes to discuss the issues of mental health and resolve their physical well being.  She tells them it's okay if they are angry.  One asks if it's okay to be happy because an ill person has died.  Caretakers tend to feel guilty because in some cases they welcome death.  While she tries to help them, she's also working on the murder case of her patient.  She doesn't believe she did it, but she's afraid she might have.

The case is complicated.  The policeman doesn't want to listen to her, he has his suspect.  When she goes to court to see if they charge her, she finds an old flame in court.  He's there to take responsibility of some young boys and offer them jobs.  She feels a spark of interest in him.  She also needs his help.

When she visits with him, she begins uncovering lies her father told her.  She also finds her patient has some secrets.  The further she goes in the investigation, the more complex the case gets.

Genevieve is no young girl but she still has a lot of growing up to do.  She does in this story.  She even defies her father and society by telling the truth to a victim that has no clue about her condition.

I could never have lived in Victorian times.  They would have shunned me and left me out of social events.  I don't think I would have minded that...

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Madeline Finn and the Library Dog by Lisa Papp

Madeline does not like to read.  She has trouble with the words, others make fun of her, and she can just do without reading.  That isn't true in school or in life.  She tries.  She really tries and all she gets is hearts that say try harder.  She wants a star...

Peachtree Publishers and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published October 1st.

This book is close to my heart.  I've been reading since age three and I've helped others learn to read by reading together, letting them read to me and finding them books that they will enjoy.  This book talks about a new way to help children learn and it's even more special.

Since Madeline can't read well enough to get a star, her mother takes her to the library.  The librarian asks to come with her and takes her to a room where everyone is reading.  She's amazed to see that they are reading to dogs!  When the librarian introduces her to Bonnie, a big white dog, she finds that Bonnie doesn't give her dirty looks, squint at her, or comment.  She just waits.  She'll let her try a word more than once.  And she can pet Bonnie as she's reading which helps her calm down.  Soon, she even gets a star!

Bonnie has one more surprise for Madeline.  I like that one best.

Machinations by Hayley Stone

Rhona is a warrior.  She's smart, fearless, and battle worn.  The world she lives in is tired and worn out, but she refuses to give up.  The machines have become their enemy and they want to kill all the humans.  She's on a mission to kill them first.

Hydra and Net Galley gave me the opportunity to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published July 26th.

The author begins the story by killing the main character.  That doesn't sound like a good start but don't worry.  She knew there was a good chance of that happening and she had DNA set aside so she could be cloned.  The problem is that when she awakens, she knows she's not what she was before but she doesn't know why.  What she remembers and what she doesn't is hard to deal with.  She also is not sure if they are all valid memories or parts of dreams.  And her lover from the past wants nothing to do with her.  He lost Rhona, has grieved seriously over her, and he doesn't want to open his heart and get hurt again.  Besides, she's not the real thing.

They don't have a lot of time to get her adjusted and back into the fold because the machines are coming after them hard.  Someone is trying to kill Rhona in the facility.  She doesn't know why but she knows she has to be alert.

This is a bit like a space opera.  We're here on earth but it's not an earth we've seen and I hope we never do.  Humans have leached the land, destroyed nature and natural elements, and there's really nothing to live for except other humans.  The machines want to remove the humans so nothing worse happens.  You can't really blame them.  There's a lot of gun battles and death in the story but there's still hope at the end.  The machines won't give up but neither will the humans.  There could be a sequel if the author is so inclined.  I enjoyed this read.  Sci/Fi can be a great read and this one is.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Behind Closed Doors by B A Paris

Grace had a good job, loved her little sister with Down's syndrome and enjoyed her life.  When her sister starts waltzing in the park with no partner, she thinks it's special that she learned to dance like that.  When a man walks towards her, she gets up to defend her.  But he just bows and then dances with Millie.  He touches her heart when he does that.  Then he asks her out on a date.  She should have said no...

St. Martin's Press sent me a copy an early reader's edition of this book to read for review (thank you).  It will be published August 9th.

This book scared me.  It's so plausible it's chilling.

Grace is charmed by Jack and he's so loving and caring.  He builds her her dream house for a wedding gift and they go to Thailand on their honeymoon.  She's thrilled to have found her love, she'd almost given up on the idea.  But Jack has secrets.  He's movie star pretty and they depict a perfect marriage but what happens at home is another story.

He doesn't even come home on their wedding night.  She's all dressed up when she leaves the bathroom but he's gone.  He tells the hotel staff that she has mental problems.  Then he begins locking her out on the patio all day while he does his thing.  He's not only a controller.  He's eats fear.  He wants her scared, he gets his jollies from that.

Every time she tries to escape, he locks her in for days.  He takes away her visits to Millie.  He forgets to feed her.  And if she defies him enough, he locks her in the basement.  He's playing mind games with her and he's winning.  There is only one way out for her.  And she's not thinking suicide.

This is a tense, suspenseful read that I couldn't put down.  It has a nice ironic ending, too.  Give it a try, you won't be bored.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Warship Jolly Roger by Sylvain Runberg, Miquel Montlló

The prisoners have broken out and while those who instigated it are dead and many others have been recaptured, the prisoner the president is most afraid of has escaped.  He should be afraid.  He railroaded Munro into prison for war crimes when he was following orders...

Magnetic Press and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published August 9th.

This a graphic novel with luscious artwork by Miquel Montllo.  Sylvain Runberg has written a story that resembles a Star Wars scene.  It's a nasty world in the future where those with money and power rule and scapegoats are created when necessary.

Munro takes three other prisoners with him.  It's escape or go in front of a firing squad, so they decide to take their chances.  Munro takes charge but everyone has important things to do if they are going to stay alive.

Starships in the sky with doublecrossers everywhere makes the story exciting.  Thirteen is young man who doesn't talk but has an owl drone who is deadly.  The girl is only along for the ride because Munro won't let her go.  And the other man is a con man who kills so there are no witnesses.  This mismatched team works well together.

They kidnap the president, Munro destroys his face, and then he sets him free in a pod.  The president then kills his son.  If he thought Munro was a problem before, I can guarantee you he will be now.

I'm going to have to read this next book in this series and see who wins.