Book Review – Reckless Emotions

Reckless Emotions

Reckless Emotions by R L Smith

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Eighteen-year-old Macy Chandler has lots of plans, one of which is attending college in the fall and continuing her 3-year relationship with Brian. But that all changes when Brian breaks up with her after accepting a scholarship at a college in another state. And to make matters worse, he is leaving for Italy for the summer. Macy is heartbroken. To help take her mind off of her problems, she gets a summer job working as a waitress at high end restaurant. Macy meets Dillon, a young man with a rough past. She can’t help be intrigued by him and if it helps to keep her mind off Brian, a new relationship might be what she needs. Unfortunately, Dillon is not what she expected. And by the time she realizes he has been lying to her, it’s too late. Macy is in trouble, but who will save her now?

Reckless Emotion is a fast-paced story and easy read. It is well-written with few grammatical errors. It’s a great read for any young adult.

While the story held my attention, I did find Macy’s character to be a little bit unbelievable as she was almost too naive. It’s not until near the end of the book that she finally realizes she actually needs to do something if she wants to save her life, despite having plenty of opportunities earlier on.

This YA novel is perfect for a quick and easy read that is sure to make you turn the pages.

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Book Review – The Darkest Eyes

The Darkest Eyes

The Darkest Eyes by Mick Brady

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Haunted by little grey men for most of her life, Will Roan sees them not only in her dreams but even when she seems wide awake. Will has always felt a little different and she just can’t seem to “find herself” no matter what she does or tries. She is even unlucky in love, never able to find one, and she can’t hang on to friendships or make connections. But when she travels through a portal to another world, her life suddenly has meaning, and she learns why those little grey men have been hunting her.

The Darkest Eyes is Mick Brady’s debut novel and for a first book, it is well done. I enjoyed reading this novel and the story kept me intrigued. There were places in the book where I could feel the anxiety of the characters and the descriptions made it easy to visualize. The story is well-written with few errors either grammatically or technically.

This is a fairly lengthy book compared to most these days with just over 600 pages. If I have to be critical about anything, perhaps some paring down. Though I can’t recall thinking at any time that anything was unnecessary.

If you like adventure, sci-fi, fantasy, with a little touch of romance, this is a book you’ll want to read.

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Book Review – Sea Cliff by Mary Deal

Sea Cliff

Sea Cliff by Mary Deal

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Sea Cliff is the story of child abuse survivor Rachel Connor. Rachel is also an author working on a new book. The story she is writing revolves around a female character who shares many of Rachel’s history including abuse and emotional scars. Without having had a personal experience with men and relationships, her male character is based on a man she regularly sees at the park where she like to spend her time writing. The problem is, this man, Matthew, has noticed Rachel, and she feels as though he is hitting on her. Something Rachel is not comfortable with.

As the weeks and months go by, Rachel and Matthew become more than just acquaintances, but can their relationship withstand Rachel’s past? Will Rachel’s novel become the success she hopes for and will it help heal her scars?

Sea Cliff is a well written and touching story with some interesting turns, and I wasn’t always sure where the story was going.

I do have to say I couldn’t get stuck into this book as I have with other stories by this author. It is a good story and the pace was fine, but there were times where it didn’t hold my attention. And yet other times I wanted to find out what happened next.

In any case, if you do like a nice story with a happy ending this is a good read.

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Book Review – On My Way to You

On My Way To You: Large Print Edition

On My Way To You: Large Print Edition by Ronald Bagliere

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Michelle and her best friend, Cam, leave Cornwall, Ontario and head to Nepal. It is Cam’s idea that they hike the Himalayas in memory of Michelle’s husband, Adam, who died in a car accident two years earlier.

John Patterson, still bitter from the accident on Everest that left him an amputee, struggles with his future as a hiking guide. Before the accident that took his leg, he was one of the best on the climbing circuit.

I was excited to learn about this book as I truly enjoyed The Lion of Khum Jung. While this story is not a continuation, it does have some of the same wonderful characters.

Ronald Bagliere weaves a great fictional tale amongst real-life tragedies on and around Everest. His characters are believable with many layers and the story is well-written.

I enjoyed this first book of the Hearts of Nepal series and look forward to reading the next one.

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Book Review – Dark World – The Lockdown

Dark World : The Lockdown

Dark World : The Lockdown by Kell Frillman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Before an eight-year-old girl named Silver came into her life, 16-year-old Ruby only dreamed of freedom from her underground home named The Complex. Now Ruby is a fugitive along with Reese, a boy she isn’t supposed to love, her parents, and others. They are searching for the truth and a way out to the surface. But the government has other plans.

Dark World – The Lockdown is the 2nd book of this series. And while I did not read the first, there was enough backstory to understand what was going on.

This is a fast paced read that I did not want to put down. I was engrossed in the story from the first line of the prologue and it stayed with me, even when I wasn’t reading. The characters are well-developed and the writing is very good. I saw few typos and only some minor grammatical errors. There was also great imagery in the story.

Author Kell Frillman tells an engrossing tale of a teenage girl who finds out everything she has ever known has been a lie. I will definitely get the first book of the series and look forward to the last.

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Book Review – Father Figure

Father Figure

Father Figure by James J. Cudney

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

In 1984, naïve 17-year-old, Amalia Graeme, can’t wait for college to start to get away from her hometown Brant, Mississippi and her abusive mother. The only person she’ll miss is her father. It’s just too bad that over the years he did little to protect Amalia from her mother’s physical and emotional abuse.

20 years later, in 2004, another girl, Brianna Porter, is exploring a college campus with her best friend, Shanelle. Always feeling smothered by her over-protective mother, the only parent Brianna has ever known, she can’t wait to head off to school in the fall. Her mother wants her to choose a college close to home in New York City, but Brianna has other plans. It’s not that she doesn’t love her mother, but Brianna needs to get away so she can understand herself and figure out what she wants.

I loved this story with all of its surprises. Just when I thought I had it figured out, a new twist turned everything around. It has been a while since a story had me uttering my shock out loud.

Father figure is a well-woven tale of two young women decades apart. Their stories intertwine until you realize they have more in common then wanting to leave home and needing to find who they are. It is well-written with few errors either grammatically or technically. If you enjoy a well-thought out mystery, then you will enjoy this story.

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Book Review – When I Died

When I Died

When I Died by Elizabeth Eckert

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 stars

When I Died by Elizabeth Eckert is a unique story. I was intrigued from the start and for the most part, it held my attention. It is written in both first and third person POV. Despite the switching back and forth of voice, it was easy to follow. There were few grammatical errors or typos, and the characters were likeable. There are some great lines in this book, one of my favourites being: With help, time, and peace, he could heal, learn to forgive, and rise above the dirt he’d been buried in.

While I enjoyed the story, there were some aspects of the writing that pulled me away, and the story didn’t stay with me when I wasn’t reading. The main character, Adrianna, has a lot of inner thoughts, all written within brackets, I found that distracting. I also noted instances of redundancies that seemed more like filler and a creative edit would help with the flow of the story. Despite these issues I am interested in seeing what the next book holds.

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Book Review – Legacy of the Tropics

Legacy of the Tropics

Legacy of the Tropics by Mary Deal

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Legacy of the Tropics by Mary Deal incorporates 3 stories that link together into one book. In the first story, Promises, Ciara Malloy, an American children’s author, falls in love with Rico and his young son, Pablo, while living in Puerto Rico. The second story, Adrift, is about Lilly, an ocean life photographer, who lives in Hawaii after having lived in Puerto Rico for a short time. Lilly, never seems to find the right man and wonders if he exists. In the final story, Reunion, a much older Ciara moves to Hawaii with her young grandson. She has reunited with Lilly, the woman with whom she always wanted to collaborate on a book with but didn’t get a chance to really know while living in Puerto Rico. Now that they are neighbours they plan on making this collaboration a reality.

I quite enjoyed this novel by Mary Deal and was hooked from the first chapter. Each story sees these women going through harrowing experiences that kept me turning the page. The stories stayed with me after I put the book down, and I couldn’t wait to pick it up again and find out what happened next.

If you like stories about strength, courage, and resilience, you will enjoy Legacy of the Tropics.

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Book Review – The Long Gray Goodbye by Bobby Underwood

The Long Gray Goodbye (Seth Halliday #2)

The Long Gray Goodbye by Bobby Underwood

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While honeymooning aboard their boat in Ecuador Private Detective, Seth Halliday witnesses someone falling from an airplane. He and his new wife, Caroline, pull the body of a young teenage girl from the water. They find an envelope taped to her body addressed to a well-known American TV actress. Curious about the envelope they cut it open to find a small cassette tape. Seth decides to hang on to the tape and not let the Ecuadorian authorities know about it until he has answers. Seth Halliday has a mystery to solve. The Long Gray Goodbye is the second book of the Seth Halliday Novels. It is a modern day mystery told in a 40s–50s PI style.

The prologue, A Rainy Farewell, quickly grabbed my attention. The story takes the reader on a journey to a number of locations and one murder suddenly becomes two as this complex mystery unfolds. The story is filled with action, romance, some funny moments, and some tender ones.

The following excerpt was one of my favourite lines in the book: I reached over and took her hand in mine and held it. I said, “Sometimes I sit with beautiful French girls in Paris while they finish their second cigarette, and reflect wistfully on what might have been.” I felt her hand squeeze mine for a moment and then she leaned her head against my shoulder and kept it there for a while.

The only issue I had with the story was with Seth’s “roving eye”. While he adores his wife, Caroline, and I believe he would never hurt her; he spends a little too much time admiring other females around him.

I truly enjoyed reading this story and look forward to more of the Seth Halliday series.

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Book Review – Hurry Up Nurse!

Hurry Up Nurse!: Memoirs of nurse training in the 1970'Hurry Up Nurse!: Memoirs of nurse training in the 1970′ by Dawn Brookes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Author, Dawn Brookes, leads the reader through her personal journey as she trains to become a nurse in England during the late 1970s to early 1980s.

I usually read fiction; however, I thought I would try something different. And since this book is about becoming a nurse and I am not a nurse nor ever trained to be one, I thought what could be more different than that?

This is a good read with some funny and some not-so-funny times. It was interesting to learn about a nurse trainee’s experiences and perspectives in various areas of nursing such as geriatrics, psychiatry, and paediatrics to name a few.

There were little, if any, grammatical errors or typos. I did think there was a need for an extra space between paragraphs when the story changed from the account of one patient to another. Much like in a fiction novel when there is a scene change within the same chapter.

While this story would probably not be of interest to many it certainly is to anyone who has trained as a nurse no matter what country they are from. And maybe to those who are curious and enjoy learning about new things.

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