Friday, 13 February 2015

Alien Under Cover by Marie Dry

Alien Under Cover

Reviewed by Desere

This is the second book in a totally out there ( in a very good way) series! Marie Dry really knows how to take something that sounds totally non sexy ( I mean aliens are not high on the drop dead gorgeous list) and turn it into a " Oh my gosh do I want a alien of my very own" !

The book is really easy to follow where as some other similar books have the whole alien here alien there, planet being attached , slaves from earth ( where did they come from did I miss the capture? ) kind of vibe happening and for the most part I have always found it confusing and felt like I was missing chapters, not the case in this read.The author let me follow it all with ease and kept me engaged at all times.

I really love this author's wonderful creative mind, she creates worlds that only come alive on screen, and you know that more than one person was involved in creating it from computer techs to screenwriters and all that , but this author does it all and with absolute amazement!

Keep them coming Marie !! Highly recommended for all fans of fantasy romance!

5/5 star review
" To love or to let go "

Thursday, 28 August 2014

The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

Reviewed by Desere

Kelsea Glynn has spent her whole life in the confinement of the forest , tucked away in a house with her adoptive parents. Over the years she is taught how to fight, how to read, write, and act as a Queen for she is the sole heir to the throne of the Tearling.

On her 19th birthday she is scared but ready to be led back to her kingdom and start her reign as ruler who is fair and just, unlike her mother who was vain and made disastrous spur of the moment decisions before her death and unlike her uncle who only cares for sex and money, and the throne for added good measure to make sure he stays in the lap of luxury he has become accustomed to since Kelsea's mother's death.

Kelsea knows more than one attempt will be made on her life and she will have to along with the help of the royal guards fight her way back into the kingdom. But she also knows this is why she was born, he kingdom needs a fearless leader and if she has to kill her uncle and the evil always looking for her pond of flesh Red Queen so be it. And so starts the journey of one girl said to be the true Queen of the Tearling and her mission to rescue her people and to never give up till she knows just why the mysterious jewel around her neck has suddenly taken on a life of it's own.

The media has described this book as a Game of Thrones for woman, in a way it is that because we do have a brave heroine who kills and fights her way out of countless assassination attempts, and even goes as far as slicing the throat of a gone a stay guard. But also being mentioned in the media is that this is great fantasy romance, that I can tell you it was not. There are one of two glimpses of romance here and there but it 's gone just as quick as it appears. I will say this, from the story line I was able to pick up that in the next part of the series we will be seeing some more hard core romance, after all the heroine is only 19 years old and has never seen a man aside from her adoptive father.

As for the rest of this book it's all guts and glory , as body parts are chopped, burned and splashed all over the place. There is a wonderful mystery along with the true meaning of the jewels that are entrusted to Kelsea, there is also the question of who the real king is to the queen or rather who Kelsea's real father is.

In all honesty I am no fan of game of throne type of books fan, yet this book had me so intrigued I could not stop reading. I wanted to know more about the jewels, the lives of the royal guards and of course the Red Queen.

All of the characters were well written and each very mysterious in their own way, but sadly the author did not do so with the Red Queen , the character was under developed and at the end of the read she was just as mysterious as she was in the start. I presume that in the next part of the series we will get to know more about her and just exactly she is as evil as she is.

To sum up we have a courageous queen to be, a stunning set of royal guards sworn to our queen, a wide range of secondary characters, people dying, children having the life sucked of them by dark forces, an enemy queen that's is over a century old yet looks like she's 22 and an journey into a remarkable world where medieval times rule.

I recommend this read for anyone looking for something a little different than the every day read, and of course for the those game of throne junkies. Word to the wise : if you don't like the odd swear word here and there, then this read is not for you nor will it be if blood and guts creep you out.

4.5 star review
" To save her kingdom she needs to find her inner queen" 

*** Copy provided by Random House Struik South Africa in exchange for a honest review 

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

A Clockwork Heart by Liesel Schwarz

Reviewed by Desere 

Forget about for better or worse, it's time to meet for better or curse! That is if you're Elle Chance and those are your wedding vows to your new husband, ex Warlock Hugh Marsh.

Not a pretty picture for any bride I can assure you! Elle devotes herself to her duties as the Oracle, who along has the power to keep designs of Shadow at bay. Marsh however finds himself missing the excitement of his former life as a warlock.

So between Elle keeping herself occupied and Marsh walking around in a I miss my life zombie state life for this couple seems pretty non adventurous. But then Commissioner Willoughby of the London Metropolitan police seeks his help in solving a magical mystery. Of course Marsh jumps at the chance to have some form of action in his life again, the catch . he loses his heart literally!

In place of the flesh and blood organ now is a clockwork device, the device makes Marsh a kind of zombie, and he's not the only one. A plague of clockwork zombies is taking over London causing quite the uproar and panic. Now don't forget we have poor Elle who is obviously as dutiful wife meant to do something to try and save her ill fated husband or is that heartless husband? Anyways she joins forces with Marsh's old friend the Nightwalker Loisa Beladodia to track down her husband's heart and restore it to his chest before the clock runs out.

This was my first time reading a book by this author and also my very first steampunk read. So of course I at first thought I was going to be a little lost seeing that I have no insight into the world of steampunk nor to mention that this read picks up from the first book.

I could not have been more wrong. The read played out very nicely and comes together with a fun and fast pace. I adored the whole heart missing replaced by a clock time is going to run out concept, it made for some truly entertaining reading material. I have read some other zombie related reads and it always seems like the same old story , zombie pops up is determined to destroy and gets defeated end of story, but in this read the thrill of the chase and the race against time elements made it so much more exhilarating to read.

What I disliked was the ending, oh my talk about my heart being ripped out, I cried so bad which I tell you I never thought would happen to me whist reading a book about zombies and magical devices. But of course I realize the author's intention , she is keeping us in suspense until she brings this magical world back to life in her next book.

I will also say that the battle's played out in this book in extremely vivid detail, it was as if I was right there seeing it happen, smelling the blood and feeling the fear, the author certainly knows how to send chills down my spine!

I am most certainly looking forward to the next book Liesel!

5/5 star review
" Heartless or gutless either way it's time to play. Game on! " 

Now available from Random Struik House South Africa 

Monday, 31 March 2014

At Stars End by Anna Hackett

Reviewed by Nas

AT THE STAR’S END  is a sci-fi fantasy novel by author Anna Hackett is a March 2013 release.

 Eos was thrown out of the institution but she is determined to find the treasure her mum believed in. The treasure believed to be on Star’s End. She hires the famous but notorious treasure hunters of the outer galaxy, the Phoenix brothers. But would the brothers take this job?

At first Dathan, one of the brothers was skeptical about the truth of Eos claim. Then he decided to take it on to find the long lost Mona Lisa. He is attracted by Eos, and the treasure. But what will happen to their desire and passion as Dathan demands the very treasure they are looking for as his payment.

AT THE STAR’S END is a very fast-paced action filled story. It is a thrill to read.

Recommended to all lovers of the genre. 

Monday, 3 February 2014

The Gladiatrix by Eva Scott


Reviewed by Desere

WOW! Where to begin with this book.

The first words I will use are definitely stunning, magical and just plain awesome! I loved this read from start to finish. It was romance combined with history and done so very well.

I really loved the way in which the author described it all,I can with all certainty say I felt it all, touched it all and lived it all in this read.

This was the most fascinating romance I have read in a long time as I never thought of Gladiators going all lovey dovey, the author has given me a brilliant new look on it all.

The vivid backdrop settings were simply to die for, when I said above that I could touch it all, I truly mean it, there was no need for me to close my eyes and try to picture anything.

Keep it up Eva!

5/5 star review

" To save her he will need to fight her" 

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Believe by Mel Tescho and Kylie Sheaffe

 Believe by Mel Teshco

Reviewed by Desere 

Believe is story about how we can find our own happiness when we can find the courage to believe that hope is out there, and look beyond the point of hopelessness and despair.

The read tells of James, student Dr and genius in the making. But his life is far from perfect and all rosey.  His father is a alcoholic and his mother one of those woman never ever to be messed with and also one of the most critical and cold hearted people you will ever meet.

The little bit of sunshine to this family is James's sister, she can see things no one else can and this makes her of course pretty special and a very interesting character however, it also leads to her being in the one mental institution after the other and just adds to the drama of this mixed up family.

For this unique ability her parents shun her as let's face it, things like "My child sees things no one else can",  is rather hidden from the world as if it is revealed the world will think you the worst parent and that perfect little bubble of family being perfect you have worked so hard for will go up in smoke.

So when James starts to also see things he is trapped in a world of wanting to hide it in order not to be viewed by the rest of the world as his sister would be and a world or wanting to let it all out so that everyone can have hope in daring to believe it can all be real.

I liked the dialogue and the backdrop settings were well incorporated. A really good story about the what if's in life and how it could all be viewed differently if we had the ability to see it from a different perspective. For me as reader it reminded me that if we take a moment and step outside of our comfort zone and try to see how things could be dealt with in a different manner rather than by our own set of rules, we will find that it is not half as bad as we make it out to be. And also the courage to be the real you.

I will recommend this read for anyone looking for a new take on romance with a very different twist and that little bit of look beyond logic message.

4 star review
" Always keep believing" 

Reviewed by Shirley Buchanan

What is to say when you have an instinct, a dream, or a vision of things that they can't be real? A mother has an instinct about her children. A psychiatrist can interpret a dream. A visionary can visualize things to come. But have you ever wondered about the families of a person with the “gift of sight” or the people their visions touch?

For as long as she can remember, Josie Bowheart has had two constants: her visions and Molly, her imaginary friend. Trying to survive in her dysfunctional family of an arrogant father, demanding mother, and a sympathetic brother, she has spent years in and out of mental institutions to “cure” her gift and make her conform to society's version of normal. By her twenty first birthday, she despairs of ever succeeding, but her brother James's gift of poetry provides the first flicker of hope for a path to either normal or acceptance. Which fork in the road does she take: normal by suppressing her gift through drugs or acceptance through strength, courage, and belief in her gift?

In James Bowheart's professional life, he is a doctor-in-training, capable of greatness, but he believes in only scientific evidence. Anything else that hasn't been proven is of little value. Until one day, a lecture by a prominent professor provides the catalyst for a change in his thinking. Now his training is becoming enhanced by a higher level of belief in alternate reasoning. But his personal life is a mess. Battling a drug addiction, hanging out with enabling friends, and feeling an attraction to his pregnant divorced neighbor were just a few of his problems. Add in an accused mental sister, overbearing alcoholic father and cold emotionless mother to the mix and he begins to wonder what he can believe in. With each revelation in his professional and personal life, the bar shifts on his changing beliefs and his confidence is shaken. Has he been arrogant in his cocky attitude that only scientific evidence was believable or has he been shown there are more spiritual things he needs to embrace?

This book was excellent with a well written plot and well developed characters. Interesting from the first to the last page, there were few emotions that were not engaged. I loved how the poetry was weaved into the story, enhancing the different emotions or insights that the characters were experiencing. I gained a different insight for my personal life from all the different angles shown of Josie's “special gift”. The secondary characters gave much added dimension to the story.

I received a copy from the authors for an honest review.

I would recommend to all romance readers.

5/5 stars If you believe, you can accomplish anything.

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Child of Chaos by Jaxon Wolfe

I'm not much of a reader of sci-fi or horror, or speculative fiction as the horror genre is coming to be known. But as reviewer, I like to read widely in all the genres. This book, although it initially seemed to be sci-fi, was more in the realm of the horror/speculative genre. So when a review copy for this work came my way, well, I couldn't refuse.

The big, bad monster, Cthulhu, was suitably evil and wicked, but dang it if his name didn't ring a bell. I've seen this guy's name around, so I have. So I Googled him, and what do you know? Cthulhu has been around for quite a while and is the invention of a pioneering speculative fiction author called H P Lovecraft. So the idea is not original. So what? Fan fiction is coming into it's own these days and one of the biggest hits in fiction in recent times was fan fiction, if what I'm hearing is true. FIFTY SHADES OF GREY is supposed to have originally been fan fiction for another famous work, before names and settings were changed.

The baddies, parasite monsters who live in host human bodies, willing the creatures to live somewhat in the manner of zombies, were appropriately repulsive. This short read, which can be read in one sitting, is action packed and doesn't coast or cruise, keeping the reader on the edge until the last line. The concept of the human/monster combination has its roots in the Bible, can you believe it? There are many people even today who fear a people called 'the Nephilim', the offspring of human and demonic angel pairings, which, they believe, happened before the flood of which Biblical patriarch Noah was the hero. And there are many who live in fear that surviving Nephilim are ready to attack the human race from outer space.

The idea in itself may not be original, but the passion of the writer shines through the work. And not having read HP Lovecraft before, I wasn't in a position to compare the original work with the merits of this one.

But as a speculative/horror piece, it was up to the mark, gave me the chills and as one can say, hit the spot. It put me in mind of SIBERIAN HELLHOLE, the speculative fiction novel from Irish author Michael Mulvihill.

I look forward to reading more from Jaxon Wolfe. I'm sure that someday, when he authors original concepts in the genre, others will be writing fanfic for him.