Magic to the Bone (Allie Beckstrom, #1) – Book Review

This is one of a couple books a store clerk talked me into buying. Unlike the others, this one was actually a pleasant surprise 🙂 For me, this book was a page turner – didn’t want to put down and stayed up way too late kind of book. I love a good series that you don’t want to put down.


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Author: Devon Monk
Published: November 4, 2008
Pages: 355

Stars: 4.5 out of 5

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Where to Buy:
Amazon

 

Synopsis:
Allie would rather moonlight as a Hound than accept the family fortune – and the strings that come with it. All magic use has costs — hers include migraines and memory loss. She finds a boy dying from a magic Offload with her father’s signature, then her father is murdered. Allie’s search for the truth calls on her country friend and the handsome man originally assigned as her bodyguard. Someone is forging magic signatures — and hers is on her dead father.

Review:
The book opens with a very much down on her luck Allie and the death of a young boy. For Allie, being twenty-five, broke, and in debt does not make for a comfortable life. Add a crazy and powerful – very powerful – father into the mix, and Alli’s life isn’t great.

All Ailli’s ever known and associated her father with is hate. I can’t imagine having such strong and negative feelings for someone whose supposed to love and care for you. That makes me so sad and I mourn the missed relationship that could have been.

Allie’s character is strong and by far imperfect. In fact, she makes a LOT of really stupid decisions based on some impractical logic of hers. But she has a big, loving heart… that can also get her into trouble. Allie is a hound with an impressive ability to trace a spell back to the person who sent it. The downside is every time she or anyone uses magic, it comes at a cost. For every spell cast, there is an Offload of equal measure. Small magics might result in a migraine; large-scale magics might mean death for the caster. As you can imagine, Allie uses a lot of magic in this book and is constantly battling the Offload.

Allie’s character is complicated and honestly has a continual string of bad luck. She is accused of murder, discovers magic isn’t black and white but can do many improbable things, gets betrayed (A LOT) and is constantly fighting for her life. Her life is tough, she has been through a significant amount of trauma, and at times she can come off a little jaded. To say the decisions she makes doesn’t always makes sense, is an understatement but one that makes sense considering the amount of trauma she has been through.

Okay, I will be the first to say I hate the instant attraction kind of story plots. But there is something about the writing and the way the author describes the passionate kiss between Allie and Zayvion, that makes me want more. To be honest, I think their connection is part of why I like this book so much. Zayvion’s character is strong, sexy, and so very complicated. It’s almost like Allie and Zayvion are both broken and work so well together because of it.

The book is written in third person, passed tense, which for some reason makes this book stand out from the rest of the books I’ve recently been reading. I will say the author added twists within the plot I didn’t see coming and that’s refreshing. One of the things that stands out from the plot is Magic and the mystery behind it all. I find it all very fascinating and my curiosity is peaked.

This book really caught me by surprise. I am interested in this series and wondering where the author will take it. I loved the connection between Allie and Zayvion. I still don’t think we’ve gotten the full picture of who Zayvion is, but I am looking forward to finding it out. This might become one of my new favorite series. Time will tell 🙂

Sick with the flu, followed by death in the family

I have been home sick for the past week with the flu.. ugh, it was not fun! Sorry to all the emails I haven’t gotten to and the pages in my book I haven’t read. You know you don’t feel good when the simple act of reading is too much.

And then Monday came with dreadful news – My step-niece passed away. I have known her since she was 8. She was 18 and her college roommate found her. I feel frozen, not able to even process all of this yet. I still can’t believe she is gone…

 

Author Spotlight – Kelly D. Smith: Rock Stars are Trouble

Not much is out about this book and since I haven’t read it yet, I can’t add much to the internal debate of should you read this book or pass.. But I was able to talk to the author a little bit and she was able to answer some questions. 


Author Interview

When did you first discover you wanted to be a writer and why writing?
When I was about 10 or 11

Tell us about your book and why you wrote it?
I’m a huge music fan and I really wanted to write a series about the boys in a band. I wanted to take the reader away to a brand new world; one that isn’t always seen in the romance genre (though don’t get me wrong, I know rock star romances are popular!)

Is this book going to be part of a series? If so, can you tell us more about the series
This is actually the first book in a series. I’ve got four other books in the series and each one follows one of the band members. I’m working on book five, which will focus on Kenda and Greyson again!

What message or lasting thought do you hope your readers will take away from your book?
More than anything, I just hope readers remember enjoying the book!

Can you offer any advice for beginning writers or those trying to get published?
It’s scary, but take the risk no matter how scary it is! Trying and failing will be the best way to learn!

Do you have any strange antics you do while you write?
Nope, though I normally end out being a pillow to my cat while I try to get my work done!


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Published: January 14, 2016
Pages: 122

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Where to Buy:
Amazon
Siren Bookstrand

Synopsis:
Kenda Lexan has one shot at this interview with Greyson Brant and she’s gotta make it perfect–otherwise she’ll lose her job. Greyson’s up and coming, and got a major reputation for flirting with anyone who interviews him–too bad for him Kenda already knows that rock stars are trouble. When she has to interview him again she can’t help but realize he’s not that bad of a person. He’s actually nice to his fans, and for some reason he’s nice to her, despite the fact she’s made it clear she’s not interested. So she agrees to hang out–as friends. She remembers what musicians are like, and a run in with her ex just solidifies that she doesn’t need anything to do with the type. But when her sister ends up in the hospital and he shows up to help her out she can’t help but think she might be wrong. Are all rock stars trouble? More importantly is Greyson Brant?

Excerpt:
“Hey,” Kenda forced a smile over her lips as she greeted him. He wore a pair of green camo pants and a muscle shirt. Kenda swallowed dryly as his muscles flexed, holding on to something. She glanced down. The black dog sat there. “Hi, Brut.”

“I hope you really meant he could come.” Greyson grinned. His black hair was tied back today, and again his green eyes were hidden behind glasses. He clearly hadn’t shaved for a few days, either. A little five o’clock shadow looked good on him.

“I did.” Kenda forced herself to speak as she continued to look him up and down. “Come on in.” She stepped out of the doorway and motioned for them to come. “Sorry it’s kinda a mess. I lost track of time.” She didn’t see the point in lying, but she wasn’t going to add the part about her boss taking credit she thought she deserved. I could just be overreacting.

“It’s not a mess. Trust me, my place looks much worse.” Greyson grinned. “Before I take him off his leash, do you mind if he goes on the couch? I know some people are super against it.”

“Oh, I don’t fucking care,” Kenda scoffed.

Greyson grinned as he let the dog off the leash. The dog didn’t seem to have any interest in looking around. All he cared about was following Greyson around. Greyson, on the other hand, he seemed very interested in looking around.

“Were you getting the interview ready to go?” he asked, glancing at her computer.

“Sorta.”

Kenda closed the distance between him and her desk before he could get a good look at what she’d just been reading. “Been doing some research, too. You didn’t tell me that fan who needed you was a little girl.” She turned to face him again.

“Maybe I liked the idea that you might be jealous.”

Kenda felt butterflies pool in her stomach. Oh this was not good.

“You thought I was jealous?” she asked as she raised an eyebrow.

“A man can hope, can’t he?”

“So you were hoping I was jealous?”

Greyson shrugged. “Let’s just say it’s been nice to meet a girl who doesn’t seem to want to jump me.”

“But you still wanted me to be jealous?” Kenda grinned, stepping towards him, interested in his answer.

“Doesn’t everyone want something they can’t have?” His eyes locked on her. A warm shiver ran down her spine and settled in the pit of her stomach. His green eyes sparkled behind his glasses.


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Kelly D. Smith is a 21 year old romance writer from Canada. After being homeschooled all her life she got her GED and has been pursuing her passion- writing- with the hopes of turning it into a full time career.

Facebook    Twitter     GoodReads Author Page

 


Hope you are able to check out this Author and her book. Comment below if you’ve read the book or your thoughts on it. Until next time, Happy Reading 🙂

Dying Bites (The Bloodhound Files, #1) – Book Review

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This book has come highly recommended but I just couldn’t get into it. Maybe it’s the timing or maybe the book is just as horrible as I think.. who knows, that’s up to you to decide 🙂


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Author: D.D. Barant
Published: June 30, 2009
Pages: 304

Stars: 1 out of 5

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Where to Buy:
Amazon
Barnes&Noble

Synopsis:
Her job description is the “tracking and apprehension of mentally-fractured killers.” What this really means in FBI profiler Jace Valchek’s brave new world—one in which only one percent of the population is human—is that a woman’s work is never done. And real is getting stranger every day…

Jace has been ripped from her reality by David Cassius, the vampire head of the NSA. He knows that she’s the best there in the business, and David needs her help in solving a series of gruesome murders of vampires and werewolves. David’s world—one that also includes lycanthropes and golems—is one with little knowledge of mental illness. An insane serial killer is a threat the NSA has no experience with. But Jace does. Stranded in a reality where Bela Lugosi is a bigger box office draw than Bruce Willis and every full moon is Mardi Gras, Jace must now hunt down a fellow human before he brings the entire planet to the brink of madness. Or she may never see her own world again…

Review:
This book is pretty catchy and starts off on an interesting note. The writing style is easy to follow and sucks you in right away. The details provided aren’t over the top, but just the right amount to allow you to get a solid picture of what’s happening. This is the first book I’ve read from this author but I’m not sure if it’s what I’m looking for. I think if you are really into those criminal shows like CSI or Bones, this book would be right up your alley. Although I don’t mind reading books like this, they aren’t really my thing and I tend to get a little a board while reading them.

‘… but Cassius only smiles. It’s a boyish, engaging smile, and I bet it makes all the sorority girls go all weak and giggly. I seriously considered putting a big whole into it.’

Ha! I love this. Jace is a… lot. Her character is funny but very flawed. She is also dense, hard headed, and more than a little rude. Jace works for the FBI in their Behavior Analysts Unit. She uses her criminal psychologist degree to get in the heads of psychos and helps bring them down.

The thing I don’t get about Jace is her negative outlook on romance and in particular relating it to heroin. Maybe I’m missing the connection there…  Jace  considers romance as self destructive, demeaning, and stupid. Bitter much? I mean wow. I think another adjective to describe Jace might also be bitchy. She’s also a little dense in the sense that her reactions and how she goes about her job is the same way she would do it on earth/her demention. Which probably sounds really odd until you get into the book and then you’ll get it. Jace still thinks she’s a hard ass with a big bad gun. Well, her gun doesn’t work and all she does is isolate herself from the people who are trying to help. Being strong is having the ability to know your weaknesses, accept help, and admit when you’re in over your head. Jace does none of those things and it’s irritating to read.

I’m always amused how vampires are always slightly different in each series I read. Some are ‘allergic’ to the sun while others aren’t. Some are describe as dead, some can be hurt by bullets.. you get the idea. In this series, vampires can be harmed by the sun but they only drink the blood of animals. Same goes for werewolfs. It’s all kind of bizarre and not at all what I was expecting. I’ll let you dig into the book to discover what else is  different.

I don’t like doing this, but I must admit defeat. Reading this book makes me want to fall asleep. What started out as reading each page, turned into skimming paragraphs and eventually skipping pages. This book is just not for me. Jace’s character drives me crazy with how annoying she is. Her character is so bitter yet everyone wants to have sex with her. I don’t get it.  This book is too much and not in the good way. I’m sorry, but this book falls into the DNF Graveyard…

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My Year – 2018 – in Books

Happy New Year and welcome to 2019!! I am happy to report this year has been better than the last. But it has been far from easy. Discovering and adjusting to my new norm after the accident has been difficult but a consistent theme in my life. Luckily, one thing that has remained a constant is my love for books! This year I read 26 books and around 8,135 pages.

Although I wish I would have read more, I am satisfied with what I did accomplish.


Silent Blade by Ilona Andrews
Img rulerIced by Karen Marie Moning
The shortest book I read in 2018 was Silent Blade by Ilona Andrews at 42 pages in length. The longest book I read was Iced by Karen Morning at 520 pages in length.
The average pages I read per book amounted to be 312

The book I read that has had the most popularity in 2018 is Can You Keep A Secret? by Sophie Kinsella with 354,850 other people reading this book. Unfortunately, I only gave this book 1 star. Probably would not recommend it..
Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella

The book I read that has the least popularity is Good Girls Don’t Date Rock Stars by Codi Cary with 1,313 other reviewers. I gave this book 4 stars and thought it was a good read.  Let me know if you thought the same 🙂
Good Girls Don't Date Rock Stars by Codi Gary

The average rating in book reviews was 3.2 out of 5…. I am glad it wasn’t 2 🙂 I think I am in need of some book recommendations. Any suggestions? 


A book I HIGHLY recommend and has the highest rating on GoodReads is Wildfire by Ilona Andrews. The average rating is 4.56 and I absolutely love this series!!
Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Here’s a look at the books I have read this year! Click on the titles to jump to my review 🙂
1    Angel's Blood    Phantom Kiss    Blade Bound  Iced  Forever Black  Silent Blade  Good girls don't date rock stars  1  Priceless  1p
billionaire next door  1  1  1  1  1  1  1    1  2  1     11            1    11
silence_fallen_layout.indd

 


I am looking forward to 2019 and the many books I will hopefully read. Let me know what you think of this years books. Until next time, Happy Reading!!

Hello, It’s me… anyone?

Hello fellow bloggers, book critiques, and lovers of all that is books. Gosh, it feels like it’s been a long time. I am sure you think I have forgotten about you but I haven’t.

I have been so passive with this blog. Not because I wanted to or because I lost interest. No, I just couldn’t juggle everything while my brain healed. I couldn’t be the mother my children needed, the wife my husband deserves, the teacher I know I once was… all the while reading and blogging like I would like. At first, I thought of myself as a failure. But I know that’s not the case because I am still here today and that means something.

2 years after the car accident, I find myself adjusting to my new self and wrapping up all the therapy. Yes, 2 years of therapy is a lot and I am ready to be done. Although being done also means accepting things for how they are. Am I the same after the car accident, NOPE. Will I ever get back to who I was, I’m not really sure.

But I can’t stand in the mirror and wish for something that might never come. I need to start living my life again and move past this accident.

While I am figuring out my new ‘normal’ and trying to see what that means for me, I am learning that the things I used to love doing, I no longer care much about. It’s a weird feeling really. Some days I don’t recognize myself and I wonder if my husband still sees the same woman he married. Luckily, my love for reading and desire to blog has not changed.

So Now What…

I have lost a lot of followers. I know and I am sorry. I hope you haven’t completely given up on me and are willing to give me another chance. I have not been here and I want to change that. So if you’ll have me, I am here! Drop me a line, a book recommendation, anything. I am here and I have decided I am not going anywhere!

Let’s rediscover the magic in books and share in our passion to read

Until next time, Happy Reading 🙂