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Monthly Archives: March 2014

No Evil Trilogy by Allison Brennan..

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allison brennan

Blurbs:

Speak No Evil – San Diego Detective Carina Kincaid is certain the much-older ex-boyfriend of an eighteen-year-old college student is guilty of her murder, but Montana Sheriff Nick Thomas vows to prove his war hero brother is innocent.

See No Evil – Assistant DA Julia Chandler reluctantly asked her ex-boyfriend, PI Connor Kincaid, to help prove her niece is innocent of killing her sexually abusive step-father, but they uncover a far deadlier group of teen-age thrill killers who have no fear or remorse.

Hear No Evil – When his kidnapped 18-year-old sister Lucy will be killed live on the Internet in 48-hours, forensic psychiatrist Dillon Kincaid must get into the mind of a psychopath to figure out his next move, while also convincing renegade FBI Agent and computer expert Kate Donovan to help.

Review:

I haven’t reviewed a crime fiction novel yet and I’ve been bursting to do so, so here you go! Okay, I’m slightly cheating here by doing 3 books in one go but I’ve just recently finished this trilogy and absolutely loved it so I just had to write a review on them together.

The trilogy follows the lives of the Kincaid Family and certain horrific events that create a dysfunction in their lives. Also a warning in advance, if like me, you’re of the faint-hearted, I don’t recommend you read these novels during the night because they are guaranteed to give you a right old fright!

I’ve heard the name Allison Brennan for a while now and had come across many authors that loved her books and had recommended them to their own fans. I actually kept off buying her books because the blurbs intrigued me but I had read some reviews and people had commented saying that the book is too graphic and there’s only a bit of romance in it etc. Like any other reader, I like to trust that the reviewer is giving an honest opinion. Regardless of that, I eventually gave in and brought the books and honestly I haven’t regretted this since and was quite ashamed that I hadn’t just gone with my instincts in the first place.

The books can be read as stand-alone novels but I found it more enjoyable to read it in the order that is provided because most of the characters make repeat appearances in the three novels. Each book follows a different storyline. In Speak No Evil, we meet Carina Kincaid and go on a journey with her to find a serial killer who has been targeting young college girls. In See No Evil we meet Carina’s brother Connor Kincaid who helps his ex-flame Julia Chandler prove that her niece is innocent of murder. Lastly, in Hear No Evil, the whole Kincaid family comes together, along with brother Dillon, to help save their youngest sister Lucy’s life, from a killer who is hell-bent on getting his revenge on women.

These three books gave me the chills. Brennan, like many crime authors, gives us an insight into the killer’s mind. I have to admit, this was incredibly creepy and I found myself shouting at the victims to get away. It definitely adds to the suspense of the novel and literally kept me on the edge of my sofa. I also liked how I was able to piece together parts of the killer as we were told by the other characters in the book. I was happy to find out that most of the time I got the killer wrong – that shows to me, what an excellent writer Allison is and just how good her books are because she was able to keep me guessing until the last moment.

I loved the family dynamics in these books. Whichever character you pick from, each is completely loyal to their family and stands behind them even in the most difficult of times. The last book does leave you with a few cliff-hangers, as to what happens to certain characters. I was completely distraught for a while, until I realised that Allison does have follow-up books where these characters are the protagonists – incredibly thankful for that!

Yes there is a bit of romance in these books. I like the romance genre, so for me that wasn’t a problem and it doesn’t take away from the suspense side of the stories. However, if you prefer to read a crime thriller that is full on crime and no romance, then I wouldn’t recommend these books for you.

I would recommend these books for romantic suspense fans and generally anyone who loves a bit of crime/thriller fiction. I can guarantee you that you will be scared, sickened, and distraught and love every minute of it. Allison is a great writer and it was truly a joy for me to have found these books.

Overall Rating: 9.5/10

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Vision in White by Nora Roberts..

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vision in white - nora roberts

Blurb:

The first book in the Bride Quartet—following the lives and loves of four friends who run Vows, a wedding-planning company. Wedding photographer Mackensie “Mac” Elliot is most at home behind the camera, but her focus is shattered moments before an important wedding rehearsal when she bumps into the bride-to-be’s brother…an encounter that has them both seeing stars.

A stable, safe English teacher, Carter Maguire is definitely not Mac’s type. But a casual fling might be just what she needs to take her mind off bridezillas. Of course, casual flings can turn into something more when you least expect it. And Mac will have to turn to her three best friends—and business partners—to see her way to her own happy ending.

Review:

I’m an old romantic at heart so when I first came across this book, I was ecstatic. From the blurb I knew that there would be lots of romance, girly talks, friendship and family aspects that I think is an absolute must in romance books.

I’m already a huge fan of Nora Roberts and I have previously loved her Chesapeake Series which were a delight to read. When Vision in White came out I was on cloud nine, literally. This is the first book in a series of four, and it tells the story of a group of childhood best friends (Mackensie, Parker, Laurel and Emmaline) who now run their own wedding-planning company. Vision in White focuses on the story of Mackensie, and how she overcomes her fears of ‘a happily ever after’ and falls slowly but surely in love with Carter Maguire.

I liked Mac’s character because she was independent, fierce (when required to be) and incredibly loyal to her friends. She’s a photographer for the company and loves to make someone else’s wedding day special. I understood Mac’s fears of not believing in marriages herself because of her personal experience with bad parenting. Her mum is unstable and egoistical and her father has been absent since she was a little girl. This would therefore make anyone wary of marriage and long-term relationships.

However, this is where Carter comes into the picture. I don’t think I’ve ever loved a hero as much as I loved Carter. He’s nerdy, clumsy, intelligent, cute and incredibly charming. Oh did I mention he’s also an English teacher? For me, Carter is the complete opposite of what most heroes are portrayed as; he’s not got a six pack, not an alpha male, not a ‘bad boy’, he wears glasses and loves literature. Probably one of the most realistic interpretations of a hero, in a novel, till date. Kudos to Nora for that! It’s also for that reason why I think he’s so lovable, I could easily relate to him and he was definitely the star of this book.

I loved the family/friendship dynamics of the four friends and how they stick together through thick and thin. By the end of the book, I found myself wishing that this wedding-planning quartet were real and not just fictional characters. The story does at times drag on a bit and I found myself skipping some parts in order to get to Carter’s scenes more quickly. However, it doesn’t take away from the beauty of the writing and it is a typical Nora Roberts novel where you can be assured that whatever happens throughout the story, there will always be a happy ending.

I recommend this book to all romance fans and chick-lit fans because it’s an absolute joy to read. Also if you love this book, do read the others in the series: Bed of Roses (Emmaline’s story), Savour the Moment (Laurel’s story) and Happy Ever After (Parker’s story).

Overall Rating: 8.5/10

Please Forgive Me by Melissa Hill..

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melissa hill

Blurb:

Have you ever dreamed of running away? Of just leaving the past behind you?

Leonie has done just that. She’s moved to another country and got a new job, a new home, a brand new life. . .But when she discovers a box of unread love letters in the bottom of her wardrobe, all ending with the words ‘please forgive me’, she finds herself drawn to the mystery behind them.

Can the unravelling of another person’s story help Leonie deal with her own past and her own secrets? All she knows is that she has to try. Because if the couple behind the love letters had a happy ending, then perhaps she just might too.

Review:

I wouldn’t have actually read this book if it wasn’t for my sister, so first and foremost big thank you to her for introducing me to the fantastic Melissa Hill.

Melissa Hill writes an extraordinary tale of three parallel stories that interweave with one another, with the past and present clashing in such ways that I was compelled to read on and on into the night. It has to be said, this book didn’t allow me to sleep much but that’s predominately why I loved it so much.

The plot has so many twists and turns that I was kept fully engaged throughout the book. Hill gives us vibrant 3-dimensional characters, whom we can easily relate to. The main story revolves around the heroine of this novel, Leonie. A girl who’s fled from her native Dublin after a broken heart to a new city and a new life. Leonie finding a box of old unopened letters is when the story really starts to unfold and the reader is given a glimpse into the lives of two extraordinary lovers.

Initially, I did get confused at times because the story is told through past and present events, so I did find myself going back to the beginning sometimes to get a good handle on things. However, that doesn’t take away from the easy flow of the writing or from Melissa’s incredible imagination, which makes this book what it is.

What I loved most about this book was that Melissa talks in great detail about forgiveness. This story made me question if I were ever in a situation, like the characters in the book, would I forgive easily or not? What does it mean to fully forgive someone and how should one ask for forgiveness? I was so intrigued by Melissa’s interpretation of this concept and loved that she gives you two sides to a story.

Melissa Hill gives a realistic insight into three different – yet at times similar – love stories, all of which are set in different times and places. If you’re a romance fan, then this book is definitely for you, I can’t recommend this book enough. It will take you on an emotional journey that will have you rooting for each and every one of the characters within this book. It was absolutely impossible to put this book down and Melissa Hill has now become one of my all-time favourites.

Overall Rating: 9.5/10

Chocolate Wishes by Trisha Ashley..

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chocolate wishes

 

Blurb:

Life is sweet for chocolate maker Chloe Lyon…In the picture-perfect Lancashire village of Sticklepond, Confectioner Chloe dispenses inspirational sweet treats containing a prediction for each customer. If only her own life was as easy to forecast – perhaps Chloe could have foreseen being jilted at the altar…But when a new Vicar arrives in the village, the rumour mill goes into overdrive. Not only is Raffy Sinclair the charismatic ex-front man of rock band ‘Mortal Ruin’, he’s also the Chloe’s first love and the man who broke her heart. Try as she might, Chloe can’t ignore this blast from her past. Could now be the time for her to make a wish – and dare to believe it can come true?
Review:

I have to say doesn’t the title just sound so scrumptious? If like me you’re a chocoholic, then rest assured, you’ll definitely love this book.

The plot of this book revolves around Chloe and how her past and present clashes with the hero of this book, Raffy Sinclair. There is of course, like any other romance book, a big secret between the two protagonists that readers will eventually come to find out near the end of book. I won’t give away any spoilers because believe you me, that little secret will change your interpretation of everything! However, not to worry, it will be for the best.

I absolutely loved the heroine, Chloe, from the get go. She’s an independent, charismatic and lovable woman. I found myself rooting for her till the end. It is for that reason I was initially quite hesitant about Raffy’s character. When he first appears in the book, he seems quite reserved but then again he was an ex singer of a rock band. He intrigued me because the reader never really knows what goes on inside his mind, and because of that there were times when I felt I couldn’t really connect with him but he does prove his worth in the end.

If you happen to love little idyllic villages where community life is just so beautiful then this book is for you. From over-bearing crazy family members, to nosy neighbours and picturesque settings, this book has it all. Ashley takes the reader on a roller coaster ride of emotions and the book kept me engaged most of the time and although I did feel the novel dragged on a bit at certain times, it didn’t take away from the overall enjoyment of the story.

Ashley has delivered a wonderfully charming, at times funny, romantic story that I think all die-hard chick-lit and romance fans should definitely give a go!

Overall Rating: 7/10

My New Blog..

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Hiya guys!
First of all a massive thank you to everyone that reads my blog, you guys rock!

I’ve got some exciting news to share with you all, I’ve decided to start a new blog where I will review books that I have read and loved. As many will know I absolutely love, love, love to read and thought might as well do something about this crazy love. My new blog is now live! So if any of you are book lovers, please do go check it out and let me know what you think.

This blog will resume as normal because I still need to get out my random thoughts once in a while, so I’ll still be posting new stuff on here as well but in the mean time have a look at my new blog by clicking on the following link: https://simsbookishthoughts.wordpress.com/

Thank you once again for being so awesome!

🙂

 

 

 

My bookish blog..

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Hi there!

someecard talking about characters

I love reading and I love discovering new books. I’ve decided to do something productive with my passion for reading by now reviewing books myself. My reviews will be honest and hopefully enjoyable! Fair warning though, my favourite genres are romance and crime/thriller fiction, so most likely my reviews will be based upon books of those genres. I already have a previous blog which is basically about me rambling on about random things but if you’re interested, here’s the link: simgillblog.wordpress.com 

I hope you enjoy my reviews and I look forward to hearing from you too! Watch this space for my first few reviews!

Thank you for visiting my blog!

The S.H.I.E.L.D Agents are back..

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*Warning contains mild spoilers*

marvels-agents-of-s-h-i-e-l-d-cast-logo-header

Finally, finally, finally, Marvel’s Agents of Shield is back on UK screens after a (very long) mid-season break and boy is it back with a bang!

Since the show first aired in September, I have become increasingly obsessed with it. Not least because I happen to love Marvel comics and films but also because like every superhero fan, I felt slightly lost after Avengers Assemble. Joss Whedon however, came to the rescue with his brilliant idea of bringing to our television screens, the day-to-day extraordinary lives of the enigmatic S.H.I.E.L.D Agents. Thus, the incredible sci-fi show was born, much to the delight of Marvel fans (including myself).

The show so far has been a rollercoaster ride, literally. From exploding bodies to jumping out of planes, the show provided me with a good dose of fantasy that was much needed in my sad, dull life. Throw in a good few action scenes, a few secrets, a betrayal and you have the perfect mix of for an extraordinary show. Besides, who wasn’t caught completely off guard by Agent May and Agent Ward’s not-so-little fling? Did not see that one coming did you? Yep me neither and this is was just the first half of the season. So you can understand why I was going crazy over the past few months, waiting for the show to come back.

Now, of course being an American show, it aired in the States much earlier so we’re still slightly behind in the UK but who cares right? ‘The Magical Place’ episode aired on my television screen last Friday night, on Channel 4. I have to admit, because I had waited so long for it to come back, I was quite apprehensive about it. I was hoping it would be just as good as I remember but I wasn’t entirely sure that would be the case. However, after now having seen the episode, I can thankfully say that I was proven wrong. Hurrah!

It started where we had left off before the mid-season break, with Agent Coulson still held hostage by Raina. Raina is a nasty piece of work but I couldn’t help but admire her audacity. Seriously, the woman never gives up does she? For me however, this episode wasn’t about Raina, it revolved entirely around Coulson. So far there have only ever been two certain events that have made me feel emotional, whilst watching this show. The first, when Simmons nearly died and the second was in this episode when Coulson tries to remember how he came back from the dead (don’t laugh, it’s not meant to be funny). I’ve had a soft spot for Coulson since Avengers Assemble, so to see him at his weakest point was quite sad, for me anyway. Also I won’t give too much away but thanks to Raina’s torture methods, we get a glimpse of the big secret that is being kept by none other than Mr Nick Fury himself. What has Fury been up to eh? Might as well bring Loki into the picture; make it a full-house party, no?

I also loved the team dynamics in this episode, and how slowly but surely they’re all coming to accept each other and trust each other – which I’m sure was a nice change for Skye, at least. As much as I loved Coulson, the highlight of this episode for me was when Skye punched Raina in the face. You go girl! Raina definitely had it coming! As per usual, the episode ended with another cliff-hanger that had me screaming at my television before I was conveniently reminded by my sibling that the next episode was only a week away. Thank the Loki…I mean Lord, for that!

I don’t think I could end this blog post without giving a shout-out to my favourite agents; Coulson, for being such a sweetheart, Skye, for being a rebel, Simmons for her incredible loyalty, Fitz for his cute-ness, May for her total kick-arse attitude and of course Ward, for just being Ward. I love this show and hope you do!

Roll on Friday.  😀

*If you haven’t already seen this show, you are seriously missing out! Go and give it a go, I assure you, you will not be disappointed!*