8/10

#BlogTour & #BookReview Porcelain: Flesh of Innocents by Lee Cockburn @lee_leecockburn

#BlogTour & #BookReview Porcelain: Flesh of Innocents by Lee Cockburn @lee_leecockburn Title: Porcelain: Flesh of Innocents

Author: Lee Cockburn

Published by: Clink Street Publishing on Feb. 21, 2017

Genres: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural

Pages: 266

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Authoright

Book Rating: 8/10

Detective Sergeant Taylor Nicks is back and in charge of tracking down a sadistic vigilante, with a penchant for torturing paedophiles, in this unsettling crime thriller by a real-life police sergeant. 

High-powered businessmen are turning up tortured around the city of Edinburgh with one specific thing in common — a sinister double life involving pedophilia. Leaving his ‘victims’ in a disturbing state, the individual responsible calls the police and lays bare the evidence of their targets’ twisted misdemeanours to discover, along with a special memento of their own troubled past — a chilling calling card. Once again heading the investigation team is Detective Sergeant Taylor Nicks, along with her partner Detective Constable Marcus Black, who are tasked not only with tracking the perpetrator down but also dealing with the unusual scenario of having to arrest the victims for their own barbarous crimes. But with the wounded piling up the predator’s thirst for revenge intensifies and soon Nicks discovers that she is no longer chasing down a sinister attacker but a deadly serial killer.

Vivid, dark and deeply unsettling Porcelain: Flesh of Innocents is the perfect next read for serious crime and police thriller fans.


Review:

Spine-chilling, gritty and deeply disturbing!

This is a raw, creepy thriller full of violence, degradation, emotional entanglements, sex and murder.

The main heroine, Taylor, is relentless, determined, strong, confused and damaged. And the supporting characters are complex, intelligent and vulnerable. The writing is well done and exceptionally descriptive. And the plot is a well-crafted police procedural jam-packed with twists, turns, suspense and mayhem.

I have to point out that this story deals with some heartbreaking, horrific issues such as pedophilia and includes some explicit lesbian sex scenes so may not be for everyone. However, saying that, for everyone else this is a gripping, fast-paced murder mystery that will keep you on the edge of your seat and definitely have you questioning the line between criminal and victim, retribution and revenge right from the haunting prologue.

 

This book is available now. 

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

Amazon UKBarnes & Noble

 

 

Thank you to Authoright for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Lee Cockburn

Lee Cockburn has worked for Police Scotland for sixteen years including as a police sergeant in Edinburgh for seven years and also as a public order officer. Before joining the force, she played for Scotland Women’s rugby team for fifteen years, earning over eighty caps for the Scottish ladies and British Lionesses teams. She also swam competitively for twelve years, successfully representing Edinburgh at the age of fifteen in the youth Olympics in Denmark in 1984. Lee lives in Edinburgh with her civil partner Emily and their two young sons Jamie and Harry. Her first book Devil’s Demise was published by Clink Street Publishing November 2014.

 

#BookReview A Million Little Things by Susan Mallery @SusanMallery @HarlequinBooks

#BookReview A Million Little Things by Susan Mallery @SusanMallery @HarlequinBooks Title: A Million Little Things

Author: Susan Mallery

Series: Mischief Bay #3

Published by: Mira Books on Feb. 28, 2017

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 368

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

From the bestselling author of The Girls of Mischief Bay and The Friends We Keep comes a twisty tale of family dynamics that explores what can go terribly, hysterically wrong when the line between friendship and family blurs 

Zoe Saldivar is more than just single-she’s ALONE. She recently broke up with her longtime boyfriend, she works from home and her best friend Jen is so obsessed with her baby that she has practically abandoned their friendship. The day Zoe accidentally traps herself in her attic with her hungry-looking cat, she realizes that it’s up to her to stop living in isolation.

Her seemingly empty life takes a sudden turn for the complicated-her first new friend is Jen’s widowed mom, Pam. The only guy to give her butterflies in a very long time is Jen’s brother. And meanwhile, Pam is being very deliberately seduced by Zoe’s own smooth-as-tequila father. Pam’s flustered, Jen’s annoyed and Zoe is beginning to think “alone” doesn’t sound so bad, after all.

Friendship isn’t just one thing-it’s a million little things, and no one writes them with more heart and humor than book club sensation Susan Mallery! 


Review:

Charming, lighthearted and thought-provoking!

This is an affecting novel that reminds us of the importance to always live life to the fullest, understand and accept that some things are beyond our control and that there truly is no age limit for falling in love. 

The writing is smooth and even. The main female characters are strong, determined, sympathetic and real. And the plot is a heartfelt journey full of self discovery, friendship, familial relationships, love, loss, and motherhood.

This is the third novel in the Mischief Bay series and once again Mallery has written a novel that is touching, compelling and highly entertaining.

 

This book is due to be published on February 28, 2017.

Pick up a copy of this novel from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaIndigoKoboBook DepositoryB&N

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Harlequin – MIRA for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Susan Mallery

#1 New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery writes heartwarming and humorous novels about the relationships that define women's lives—family, friendship, romance. She's best known for putting nuanced characters into emotionally complex, real-life situations with twists that surprise readers to laughter. Because Susan is passionate about animal welfare, pets play a big role in her books. Beloved by millions of readers worldwide, her books have been translated into 28 languages.

Susan lives in Washington state with her husband, two ragdoll cats, and a small poodle with delusions of grandeur.

Photo by Annie Brady

#BookReview Taste of Romance by The Melbourne Romance Writers Guild @TheMRWG @cass_oleary

#BookReview Taste of Romance by The Melbourne Romance Writers Guild @TheMRWG @cass_oleary Title: Taste of Romance

Author: The Melbourne Romance Writers Guild

Published by: Melbourne Romance Writers Guild on Feb. 14, 2017

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense

Format: eBook

Source: Cassandra O'Leary

Book Rating: 8/10

Love is a box of chocolates – treat yourself to a delicious assortment of sixteen romance flavours from new and established authors.
Firefighter Ryan Harper is a dark chocolate-coated orange cream. His rich, bitter shell hides a sweet and sumptuous centre that satisfies long after the final bite.
Detective Colt Callaghan is chilli-cherry swirl in decadent milk chocolate. He hides behind a gruff exterior, but underneath he’s sexy and sweet, with a shock of spice when you least expect it. 
Space Engineer Simon Dubois is a handmade truffle. Decadent and Indulgent. Dark chocolate caressing a ganache infused with earthy, sensuous Armagnac, and sweet succulent smoked pimento. A fusion of flavor, a frission of pleasure.
Taste of Romance is a collection of love stories and romance fiction from members of the Melbourne Romance Writers Guild. The anthology spans many facets of romance, from contemporary to historical, romcom to suspense, with heat levels ranging from sweet to erotic. These works are a celebration of the past 26 years of encouragement and support the Guild has given to romance authors as they journey toward publication and beyond.


Review:

Charming, lighthearted and romantic!

This is a collection of short stories that has a little something for everyone, sweet, saucy, sexy and delectably racy!

The stories are well written, intriguing, and incorporate a wide variety of romantic genres including contemporary, historic, paranormal, and erotic. And although the plots differ wildly from second-chance romances, shifter mates, and friends-to-more, they all have that prerequisite happy-ever-after ending.

This truly is a perfect read for everyone who enjoys “love stories” and is a great introduction to some very talented authors you’ll be sure to want to read more from.

 

This collection is due to be published on February 14, 2017.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon Canada

 

 

Thank you to Cassandra O’Leary and The Melbourne Romance Writers Guild for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review. 

 

About The Melbourne Romance Writers Guild

The Melbourne Romance Writers Guild members who contributed to this novel are Lauren James, Cassandra O'Leary, Michelle Somers, Fiona Miers, Dora Bramden, Andra Ashe, Kim Cleary, Charmaine Ross, Samara Parish, Jess Devine, Nina Mtanu, Josie Chiara Caporetto, Sandra Damevski, Bridget Kaye, Savannah Blaize, Maggie Ann Smith

#BookReview Love Story by Lauren Layne @readloveswept

#BookReview Love Story by Lauren Layne @readloveswept Title: Love Story

Author: Lauren Layne

Series: Love Unexpectedly #3

Published by: Loveswept on Feb. 14, 2017

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 232

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Loveswept, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

Over the course of one wild road trip, feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love in this charming rom-com—a standalone novel from the USA Today bestselling author of Blurred Lines and Good Girl.

When Lucy Hawkins receives a job offer in San Francisco, she can’t wait to spread her wings and leave her small Virginia hometown behind. Her close-knit family supports her as best they can, by handing over the keys to a station wagon that’s seen better days. The catch? The cross-country trip comes with a traveling companion: her older brother’s best friend, aka the guy who took Lucy’s virginity hours before breaking her heart.

After spending the past four years and every last dime caring for his sick father, Reece Sullivan will do just about anything to break free of the painful memories—even if it means a two-week road trip with the one girl who’s ever made it past his carefully guarded exterior. But after long days of bickering in the car turn into steamy nights in secluded motel rooms, Reece learns that, when it comes to Lucy, their story is far from over. And this time, they just might have a shot at a happy ending.


Review:

Passionate, emotional and fun!

This is a second-chance romance about loss, friendship, heartbreak, miscommunication, forgiveness, trust, family, good wine and love.

The characters are young, hard-working, stubborn and dependable, The writing is clear. And the plot is a literal road trip that starts with friction and hostility in Virginia and ends with commitment and romance in San Francisco.

Overall, I found this story to be an easy, charming, sweet read that is perfect for Valentine’s Day and for all those who love happy-ever-after endings!

 

This book is due to be published on February 14, 2017.

Pick up a copy of this story from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaIndigoKoboB&N

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Random House – Loveswept, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Lauren Layne

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen romantic comedies.

A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career.

She lives in midtown Manhattan with her high-school sweetheart, where she writes smart romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush. In LL’s ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

#BookReview The Dressmaker’s Dowry by Meredith Jaeger @Meredith_Jaeger @WmMorrowBks

#BookReview The Dressmaker’s Dowry by Meredith Jaeger @Meredith_Jaeger @WmMorrowBks Title: The Dressmaker's Dowry

Author: Meredith Jaeger

Published by: William Morrow on Feb. 7, 2017

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 384

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: William Morrow, Edelweiss

Book Rating: 8/10

For readers of Lucinda Riley, Sarah Jio, or Susan Meissner, this gripping historical debut novel tells the story of two women: one, an immigrant seamstress who disappears from San Francisco’s gritty streets in 1876, and the other, a young woman in present day who must delve into the secrets of her husband’s wealthy family only to discover that she and the missing dressmaker might be connected in unexpected ways

An exquisite ring, passed down through generations, connects two women who learn that love is a choice, and forgiveness is the key to freedom…

San Francisco: 1876

Immigrant dressmakers Hannelore Schaeffer and Margaret O’Brien struggle to provide food for their siblings, while mending delicate clothing for the city’s most affluent ladies. When wealthy Lucas Havensworth enters the shop, Hanna’s future is altered forever. With Margaret’s encouragement and the power of a borrowed green dress, Hanna dares to see herself as worthy of him. Then Margaret disappears, and Hanna turns to Lucas. Braving the gritty streets of the Barbary Coast and daring to enter the mansions of Nob Hill, Hanna stumbles upon Margaret’s fate, forcing her to make a devastating decision…one that will echo through the generations.

San Francisco: Present Day

In her elegant Marina apartment overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge, Sarah Havensworth struggles to complete the novel she quit her job for. Afraid to tell her husband of her writer’s block, Sarah is also hiding a darker secret—one that has haunted her for 14 years. Then a news headline from 1876 sparks inspiration: Missing Dressmakers Believed to be Murdered. Compelled to discover what happened to Hannelore and Margaret, Sarah returns to her roots as a journalist. Will her beautiful heirloom engagement ring uncover a connection to Hanna Schaeffer?


Review:

Intriguing, thought-provoking and heartwarming!

This story is told from two different perspectives. One is that of Sarah, a young woman who stumbles upon an unsolved mystery from the 1870s while working on her thesis. And the other is Hanna, a young woman struggling to survive and raise her siblings in a time when women had no rights and few options.

It is, ultimately, a story about loneliness, loss, injustice, determination, strength, tragedy, guilt, and love.

The writing is smooth. The characters are strong, multi-layered, and fascinating. And the multiple plots quickly unravel into a engrossing mystery that not only manages to intertwine all the subplots, but also ends with a little surprise.

Overall this is a wonderful debut novel and I look forward to reading more from Jaeger in the future.

 

This book is due to be published on February 7, 2017.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaIndigoKoboBook DepositoryB&N

 

 

Thank you to Edelweiss, especially William Morrow, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Meredith Jaeger

Meredith is a USA Today Bestselling Author. She is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, where she was raised by a Swiss father and an American mother. She is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Her own engagement ring, which is an heirloom from 1903, inspired her to write her debut novel The Dressmaker’s Dowry. She wrote it on weekends while working for a San Francisco startup.

Meredith finds the immigrant experience a rich part of the fabric of American history. Her second novel, Boardwalk Summer, will be published in June 2018. Meredith lives outside San Francisco with her husband, their rambunctious toddler and spoiled English bulldog, where she now writes full time.

Photo credit: Erika Pino Photography

#BookReview Good Boy by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy @SarinaBowen @ElleKennedy @ninabocci

#BookReview Good Boy by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy @SarinaBowen @ElleKennedy @ninabocci Title: Good Boy

Author: Sarina Bowen, Elle Kennedy

Series: WAGs #1

Published by: Rennie Road Books on Jan. 31, 2017

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 269

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Nina Bocci

Book Rating: 8/10

Hosting her brother’s wedding for an MVP guest list is the challenge of Jess Canning’s life. Already the family screw-up, she can’t afford to fail. And nobody (nobody!) can learn of the colossal mistake she made with the best man during a weak moment last spring. It was wrong, and there will not be a repeat. Absolutely not. Even if he is the sexiest thing on two legs.

Blake Riley sees the wedding as fate’s gift to him. Jess is the maid of honor and he’s the best man? Let the games begin. So what if he’s facing a little (fine, a lot) of resistance? He just needs to convince the stubborn blonde that he’s really a good boy with a bad rap. Luckily, every professional hockey player knows that you’ve got to make an effort if you want to score.

But Jess has more pressing issues to deal with than sexy-times with a giant man-child. Such as: Will the ceremony start on time, even though someone got grandma drunk? Does glitter ever belong at a wedding? And is it wrong to murder the best man?

Caution: May cause accidental aspiration of tea or coffee. Do not read in a public place where loud laughter is inappropriate. Contains hot but hilarious hockey players, puppy cuddling and a snarky pair of underwear.


Review:

Sexy, steamy and fun!

This is a provocative tale between the cocky, green-eyed, well-hung Blake who is looking for a good time, not a long time, after being burned in the past, and the loyal, modest, wedding planner turned nursing student Jess who is desperately trying to start again and find herself.

The writing is well done. The supporting characters include the lovable and charming Jamie and Wes from the “Him” series.  And the plot is a sultry mix of familial dynamics, blistering chemistry, suggestive dirty talk, blossoming romance, as well as a little sneak peek into what it’s like to be the wife/girlfriend of a professional athlete.

What more can I say. When two of the most popular, successful authors of a genre collaborate you get a highly entertaining, lighthearted, scrumptious read that you’ll devour.

 

Good Boy is the first book in the “WAGS” series and the second book in the series, STAY, is due out in mid June.

 

 

Good Boy is due to be published on January 31, 2017.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaChapters/IndigoKoboB&N

 

 

Thank you to Nina Bocci, Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Sarina Bowen

Sarina Bowen is the RITA® Award winning author of over two dozen contemporary and LGTB romance novels. She most recently hit the USA Today bestseller's list in February, with Brooklynaire. Formerly a derivatives trader on Wall Street, Sarina holds a BA in economics from Yale University.

Sarina Bowen is a New Englander whose Vermont ancestors cut timber and farmed the north country since the 1760s. Sarina is grateful for the invention of indoor plumbing and wi-fi during the intervening 250 years. On a few wooded acres, she lives with her husband, two boys, and an ungodly amount of ski and hockey gear.

Sarina's books are published in a dozen languages on four continents. In 2016, The Romance Writers of America honored HIM by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy with a RITA award for Best Contemporary Romance, Mid-Length.

About Elle Kennedy

A New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, Elle Kennedy grew up in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario, and holds a B.A. in English from York University. From an early age, she knew she wanted to be a writer, and actively began pursuing that dream when she was a teenager.

Elle currently writes for various publishers. She loves strong heroines and sexy alpha heroes, and just enough heat and danger to keep things interesting!

#BookReview Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner @LisaGardnerBks @DuttonBooks

#BookReview Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner @LisaGardnerBks @DuttonBooks Title: Right Behind You

Author: Lisa Gardner

Series: Quincy & Rainie #7

Published by: Dutton on Jan. 31, 2017

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 389

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Dutton, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

Lisa Gardner’s next thriller following her runaway New York Times bestseller Find Her takes her wildly popular brand of suspense to new heights.

Is he a hero?

Eight years ago, Sharlah May Nash’s older brother beat their drunken father to death with a baseball bat in order to save both of their lives. Now thirteen years old, Sharlah has finally moved on. About to be adopted by retired FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner, Rainie Conner, Sharlah loves one thing best about her new family: They are all experts on monsters.

Is he a killer?

Then the call comes in. A double murder at a local gas station, followed by reports of an armed suspect shooting his way through the wilds of Oregon. As Quincy and Rainie race to assist, they are forced to confront mounting evidence: The shooter may very well be Sharlah’s older brother, Telly Ray Nash, and it appears his killing spree has only just begun. 

All she knows for sure: He’s back.

As the clock winds down on a massive hunt for Telly, Quincy and Rainie must answer two critical questions: Why after eight years has this young man started killing again? And what does this mean for Sharlah? Once upon a time, Sharlah’s big brother saved her life. Now, she has two questions of her own: Is her brother a hero or a killer? And how much will it cost her new family before they learn the final, shattering truth? Because as Sharlah knows all too well, the biggest danger is the one standing right behind you.


Review:

Suspenseful, gripping and intense!

In this new novel by Gardner, the beloved FBI profiler Quincy is back and this time his expertise is needed on a case that quickly unfolds to be much more sinister and premeditated than a simple spree killer.

The writing is well done. The characters are troubled, guarded, secretive and complex. And the plot is a compelling, mysterious web of childhood violence, trauma, lies, abuse, corruption, greed and murder.

Overall, this is a well-paced, riveting tale that gives an insightful look into the complexities of familial relationships, foster care and fugitive tracking, and also has some unexpected twists you won’t see coming.

 

This book is due to be published on January 31, 2017.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaBook DepositoryIndigoKobo, B&N 

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Dutton Books, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Lisa Gardner

New York Times bestselling crime novelist Lisa Gardner began her career in food service, but after catching her hair on fire numerous times, she took the hint and focused on writing instead. A self-described research junkie, she has parlayed her interest in police procedure, cutting edge forensics and twisted plots into a streak of eleven bestselling suspense novels.

Lisa lives in the White Mountains of New Hampshire with her family, as well as two highly spoiled dogs and one extremely neurotic three-legged cat. Lisa graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in international relations.

#BookReview Off Base by Annabeth Albert @AnnabethAlbert @CarinaPress

#BookReview Off Base by Annabeth Albert @AnnabethAlbert @CarinaPress Title: Off Base

Author: Annabeth Albert

Series: Out of Uniform #1

Published by: Carina Press on Jan. 9, 2017

Genres: Contemporary Romance, LGBTQIA

Pages: 304

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Carina Press, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

After trading the barracks for a fixer-upper rental, navy SEAL Zack Nelson wants peace, not a roommate—especially not Pike, who sees things about Zack he most wants to hide. Pike’s flirting puts virgin Zack on edge. And the questions Pike’s arrival would spark from Zack’s teammates about his own sexuality? Nope. Not going there. But Zack can’t refuse.

Pike Reynolds knows there won’t be a warm welcome in his new home. What can he say? He’s an acquired taste. But he needs this chance to get his life together. Also, teasing the uptight SEAL will be hella fun. Still, Pike has to tread carefully; he’s had his fill of tourists in the past, and he can’t risk his heart on another, not even one as hot, as built—and, okay, yeah, as adorable—as Zack.

Living with Pike crumbles Zack’s restraint and fuels his curiosity. He discovers how well they fit together in bed…in the shower…in the hallway… He needs Pike more than he could have imagined, yet he doesn’t know how to be the man Pike deserves.


Review:

Intriguing, romantic and heartwarming!

This is a contemporary romance story about military life, discovering one’s true self, and having the strength to follow one’s heart regardless of the consequences all wrapped up in a plot filled with flirty banter, sexual tension, chemistry, doubt, acceptance, harassment, friendship and love.

The writing is clear and precise. And the main characters are an alluring mix of an uncertain, strong, hunky Navy Seal and a fun-loving, charming professor who loves to tease. 

Overall, I would have to say this is an encouraging, lighthearted story with endearing characters that will captivate you from the very beginning.

This is the first novel in the new “Out of Uniform” series by Annabeth Albert, and I look forward to reading At Attention (Out of Uniform #2), Apollo and Dylan’s story, due out later this year.

 

This book is due to be published on January 9, 2017. 

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following links.

Amazon UK, Amazon USAmazon CanadaIndigoKoboBarnes & Noble

 

Thank you to Carina Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Annabeth Albert

Frequent tweeter, professional grammar nerd, and obsessive reader, Annabeth Albert is also a Pacific Northwest romance writer in a variety of subgenres.

Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. In between searching out dark heroes to redeem, she works a rewarding day job and wrangles two toddlers.

#BookReview Beyond Derrynane by Kevin O’Connell

#BookReview Beyond Derrynane by Kevin O’Connell Title: Beyond Derrynane

Author: Kevin O'Connell

Series: The Derrynane Saga #1

Published by: Gortcullinane Press on Jun. 7, 2016

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 348

Format: eBook

Source: Kevin O'Connell

Book Rating: 8/10

Wed in an arranged marriage to a man nearly fifty years her senior, sixteen-year-old Eileen O’Connell goes from being one of five unmarried sisters to become the mistress of Ballyhar, the great estate of John O’Connor, one of the wealthiest and most influential men in Ireland.

When O’Connor dies suddenly seven months into their marriage, Eileen must decide whether she will fulfill her brother’s strategic goals for her family by marrying her late husband’s son.

Headstrong and outspoken, Eileen frustrates her brother’s wishes, as, through the auspices of her uncle, General Moritz O’Connell of the Imperial Austrian Army, she, along with her ebullient elder sister, Abigail, spend the ensuing richly-dramatic and eventful years at the court of the Empress Maria Theresa in Vienna. The sisters learn to navigate the complex and frequently contradictory ways of the court–making a place for themselves in a world far different from remote Derrynane. Together with the general, they experience a complex life at the pinnacle of the Habsburg Empire.

Beyond Derrynane – and the three books to follow in The Derrynane Saga – will present a sweeping chronicle, set against the larger drama of Europe in the early stages of significant change, dramatising the roles, which have never before been treated in fiction, played by a small number of expatriate Irish Catholics of the fallen “Gaelic Aristocracy” (of which the O’Connells were counted as being amongst its few basically still-intact families) at the courts of Catholic Europe, as well as relating their complex, at times dangerous, lives at home in Protestant Ascendancy-ruled Ireland.

In addition to Eileen’s, the books trace the largely-fictional lives of several other O’Connells of Derrynane, it is the tantalisingly few facts that are historically documented about them which provide the basic threads around which the tale itself is woven, into which strategic additions of numerous historical and fictional personalities and events intertwine seamlessly. 


Review:

Well researched, exceptionally detailed and highly informative!

This story takes us back into the 1760s, when women were considered mere objects and independence was unheard of, and gives us an in-depth look into the life and loves of the author’s ancestors.

It is ultimately a story about family relationships, betrayal, wealth, adventure, self discovery, fulfillment and love.

The writing is well done with beautiful imagery. The main characters are two Irish sisters; Abigail the homely, kind, content older sister; and Eileen the strong, determined, daring younger one. And the plot unfolds chronologically with a good mix of historical fact, authentic dialogue, and heartfelt emotion that keeps the story flowing from start to finish.

This is the first book in “The Derrynane Saga” and I look forward to reading the continuation of Eileen’s story in the next novel in the series when it is published.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy of this book from your favourite retailer or from the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaChapters/IndigoBook Depository

 

Thank you to Kevin O’Connell, the author, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review. It was a pleasure and honour to read.

 

About Kevin O'Connell

Kevin O'Connell is a native of New York City and a descendant of a young officer of what had—from 1690 to 1792—been the Irish Brigade of the French army, believed to have arrived in French Canada following the execution of Queen Marie Antoinette in October of 1793. At least one grandson subsequently returned to Ireland and Mr. O'Connell's own grandparents came to New York in the early twentieth century. He holds both Irish and American citizenship.

He is a graduate of Providence College and Georgetown University Law Centre.

For much of his four decades-long legal career, O'Connell has practiced international business transactional law, primarily involving direct-investment matters, throughout Asia (principally China), Europe, and the Middle East.

The father of five children and grandfather of ten, he and his wife, Laurette, live with their golden retriever, Katie, near Annapolis, Maryland

#BookReview Afraid to Fly by L.A. Witt @GallagherWitt @RiptideBooks

#BookReview Afraid to Fly by L.A. Witt @GallagherWitt @RiptideBooks Title: Afraid to Fly

Author: L.A. Witt

Series: Anchor Point #2

Published by: Riptide Publishing on Jan. 16, 2017

Genres: Contemporary Romance, LGBTQIA

Pages: 347

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Riptide Publishing, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

Once a fearless fighter pilot, Commander Travis Wilson is now confined to a desk. It’s been eight years since the near-fatal crash that grounded him, and it still rules his life thanks to relentless back pain.

Lieutenant Commander Clint Fraser almost drowned in a bottle after a highly classified catastrophe while piloting a drone. His downward spiral cost him his marriage and kids, but he’s sober now and getting his life back on track. He’s traded drones for a desk, and he’s determined to reconcile with his kids and navigate the choppy waters of PTSD.

Clint has been on Travis’s radar ever since he transferred to Anchor Point. When Clint comes out to his colleagues, it’s a disaster, but there’s a silver lining: now that Travis knows Clint is into men, the chemistry between them explodes.

It’s all fun and games until emotions get involved. Clint’s never been in love with a man before. Travis has, and a decade later, that tragic ending still haunts him. Clint needs to coax him past his fear of crashing and burning again, or their love will be grounded before takeoff.


Review:

Touching, captivating, and remarkably fervent!

In this latest novel Witt takes us back to Anchor Point and reminds us of some of the emotional and physical damage experienced by those in the military and gives us a good look at the symptoms and effects of PTSD.

It is, ultimately, a story about family dynamics, friendship, compassion, support, romance and love.

The characters are real, troubled, mature and resilient. The prose is precise. And the plot, told from alternating perspectives, flows smoothly from start to finish with a good mix of suffering, tension, desire, rapport, and emotional turmoil.

Overall, this truly is a heartwarming story about two wounded men who finally find the solace, sensitivity, tolerance, tenderness, and intimacy they need in each other.

This is the second novel in the “Anchor Point” series. If you haven’t had a chance to check out my review of Just Drive (Anchor Point #1), you can find it HERE.

 

This book is due to be published on January 16, 2017. 

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following link.

Amazon CanadaAmazon USAmazon UKIndigoKoboB&N

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Riptide Publishing, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About L.A. Witt

L.A. Witt is an abnormal M/M romance writer who has finally been released from the purgatorial corn maze of Omaha, Nebraska, and now spends her time on the southwestern coast of Spain. In between wondering how she didn't lose her mind in Omaha, she explores the country with her husband, several clairvoyant hamsters, and an ever-growing herd of rabid plot bunnies.

She also has substantially more time on her hands these days, as she has recruited a small army of mercenaries to search South America for her nemesis, romance author Lauren Gallagher, but don't tell Lauren. And definitely don't tell Lori A. Witt or Ann Gallagher. Neither of those twits can keep their mouths shut...

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