#cjsreads: Dead Gone (T.J Brearton) @BreartonTJ

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-6-18-39-pm

As we are starting to wrap up our March reads for #cjsreads, I can’t believe how fast this month flew by!  For one of our last choices, we read a police procedural novel by T.J Brearton called Dead Gone.

Keep reading for a synopsis of the book and to find out what we all thought of this book!

 

Continue reading “#cjsreads: Dead Gone (T.J Brearton) @BreartonTJ”

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #imwayr

screen-shot-2017-01-04-at-5-43-21-pmIt’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly post to share what you recently finished reading, what you’re currently reading, and what you plan on reading this week.  I often see (and admire!) these posts; especially the ones done by my friend Amy at Novel Gossip.  So, I figured I would hop on the bandwagon!  It’s hosted by Kathryn at Bookdate.

I have been a completely reading psychopath the last few weeks so let’s see how this goes…

What I Read Last Week (March 19th to March 26th):

Reviews Posted:

The Cleaner by Elisabeth Herrmann:  This one I thought was okay, not 100% what I was expecting.

Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski:  new and completely original narrative voice; I loved it.

Wicked Game and Deadly Game by Matt Johnson: police procedural novels that had a military twist.  Kind of like Jack Reacher meets I Am Pilgrim.

Lola by Melissa Scrivner Love:  A gang thriller; completely different from what I usually read but I didn’t mind it.

Abattoir of Dreams by Mark Tilbury: such an emotional read, highly recommended!

Look out for my reviews:

These books I finished last week, but haven’t posted the reviews yet so you will have to be patient!

Dead Gone by TJ Bearton

The River At Night by Erika Frenerick

Yes Please! by Amy Poehler

Watching Edie by Camilla Way

Currently Reading:

Up Next:

I’ve decided that although I will continue to keep reading mystery, thriller and suspense novels primarily, that I will try to incorporate more books from other genres into my weekly rotation!  I need a break (for my own sanity!) and to keep things fresh.  Hopefully you guys don’t mind the change up!

This week, I have a few books in mind…and hopefully will have time to read a few more!

 

What are you currently reading?!

Book Review: Skitter (Ezekiel Boone) @ezekiel_boone @RandomHouseCA

Screen Shot 2017-03-16 at 10.41.54 AM.png

The second wave is coming…..

After reading, The Hatching (the first in this trilogy by Ezekiel Boone- you read my review for that one here),  I was  beyond excited when I was approved for Skitter.  I could not wait to read it!! I actually was lucky enough to read this book as a buddy read last NOVEMBER because I needed someone to share my thoughts with while I was reading!  I read the book, wrote the review and then waited.  I didn’t want to talk about this one too early, but I cannot hold it in anymore! This one is a seriously intense read!

Continue reading “Book Review: Skitter (Ezekiel Boone) @ezekiel_boone @RandomHouseCA”

Book Review: Deadly Game (Matt Johnson) @MATT_JOHNSON_UK @ORENDABOOKS

Screen Shot 2017-03-24 at 2.12.35 PM.pngThrilled to be today’s stop on the Deadly Game, by Matt Johnson, blog tour! After reading Wicked Game (you can read my review for that one here), I was so excited to pick up where I left off and dive back into Finlay’s realm. As soon as I saw that this novel would surround Robert Finlay investigating the East European sex-slave industry, I was intrigued. I couldn’t wait to see what Finlay would do in such a dangerous, underground world.

Although the second book in the series featuring Robert Finlay, this one could be easily read as a standalone. Johnson opens the novel with the first few chapters featuring the police report highlighting the events in the entire first book. I loved this feature; Johnson takes the time to inform his reader of Finley’s past completely directly instead of slowly weaving and leaving bits of information.  I love when an author is direct and helps to set the stage for what will unfold.

The novel opens with Finlay, living in a safe house with his family, returning to work and almost instantly getting wrapped up with a prominent family that is involved in human and sex trafficking in Eastern Europe.   While on the trail of this case, Robert is also dealing with the repercussions of the last novel and the demons of his past that are still threatening to harm him.

I have mentioned several times on Clues and Reviews, especially lately, that I have become a bit weary of police procedurals. I am struggling with their monotony. I am happy to say the plot of Deadly Game seriously breaks the mould. The sex trafficking investigation was so interesting as a lead case; I was completely consumed. The writing was fast paced and non-stop.  Every time I felt like things were slowing down, Johnson would flip the switch and send me barreling into a new direction.

Unlike Wicked Game, which relied heavily on physical action and narrow escapes, Johnson focuses acutely on the psychological and strategical responses of the characters in this novel. Smart, intricate and tightly woven, Johnson’s prose had me reeling.

I also loved the introduction of all the female characters in this novel; although Jenny, Finlay’s wife, will remain my favourite, I loved the introduction of all the female police and investigative officers working together in this particular novel.  Hopefully, Johnson will continue to develop them throughout the series.

Overall, if you enjoy military thrillers or an action thriller with strong political ties, you’ll love this one.  My advice? Make sure you have ample time to read this one; once you start, Johnson barely leaves time for your to catch your breath, let alone take a break!!  I rated it 4/5 stars.

 Be sure to check out the other stops on the Deadly Game blog t

Screen Shot 2017-03-25 at 8.45.29 PM.png

Thanks to Orenda Publishing for a copy of this novel; it was my pleasure to provide an honest review.

Book Review: The Abattoir of Dreams (Mark Tilbury) @MTilburyAuthor @Bloodhoundbook

Screen Shot 2017-03-25 at 12.52.52 PM.pngThe Abattoir of Dreams, by Mark Tilbury, is a novel that I went into completely blindly. I didn’t read the synopsis, I didn’t bother checking out reviews, instead, I dove in completely in dark without any preconceived notions…and I am so glad that I chose to read this book this way.

In keeping with that theme, I will not dive into characters or much into the plot in this review because I truly would not want to ruin the experience of discovering these on your own.

The novel opens with Michael Tate in a hospital; he has no memory, he is paralyzed and is being interrogated by a police officer for murdering his girlfriend. Michael does not remember killing her, he does not remember his past and he doesn’t really understand what is going on. When strange things begin to happen and his memories begin triggering, the reader follows Michael on a journey into the past and as Michael becomes closer to discovering the truth, he realizes how much danger he is actually in.

This novel is seriously gutwrenching. The hardships, the heartache and the struggles that Michael Tate faces had me feelings all sort of feels. I was sad, I was angry. There were moments in this book that I was disgusted. There were moments where I was gasping.

The plot is multi-layered and tiptoes around so many of the features I love from many genres. This book has some dark elements, dabbles in the supernatural, contains crime elements, police procedural elements and wraps everything up in the format of a psychological thriller. This sounds like it would be trying to do too much, but Mark Tilbury does this brilliantly.

Be warned that scenes in this novel are very graphic, but even with that, I would consider this book a must-read. Fantastically written and chilling to the bone, this novel will sit with you longer after you have turned the final page.

I rated this one a 4/5 stars.

I received a digital copy of this book through the TBCFB; it was my pleasure to provide an honest review.

Book Review: Wicked Game (Matt Johnson) @Matt_Johnson_UK @OrendaBooks

Screen Shot 2017-03-24 at 2.11.56 PM

In preparation for my Deadly Game blog tour stop, I decided to read Wicked Game, the first in the series, by Matt Johnson. Mind you neither of these books are something I am normally drawn into reading, however, when Orenda asks you to read one of their publications, you trust in Karen and fall in line. So, that’s what I did.

Robert Finley, an ex-Army operative, is living a simple, monotonous life with his wife and daughter. He likes it that way. However, when a man connected to Robert’s past is killed, he finds himself thrown back into the past, into a life he has tried to leave behind.   What results is an encapsulating whirlwind thriller that kept me engaged and flipping the pages.

This one reminded me of novels like I Am Pilgrim (which I read for my book club) and the Jack Reacher series; character heavy, plot heavy and absolutely engaging.   This is not a book to peruse casually; once you have entered Robert’s world, expect to be sucked in.

The novel opens with some seemingly random events and, to be truthful, I was initially quite confused with all the characters being introduced. However, once the story began to come together, I was impressed. What seems like random breadcrumbs, in fact, becomes a complete puzzle as Johnson weaves and binds all bits of the plot together.

Johnson creates a stellar character in Robert Finley. When the novel opens, he is just your everyday guy, but then once his past is revealed, he becomes so much more complex! He is sort of an anti-hero type and as his past and present actions are revealed, I found myself rooting for him.

After reading this book, I cannot wait to start reading  Deadly Game and am expecting some big things…no pressure or anything.

I rated this one a 4/5 stars.

 And, be sure to watch out for my post on the blog tour for Deadly Game tomorrow!

 

Thanks to Orenda for my copy of this novel; it as my pleasure to provide and honest review.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday Finds #17: March 24, 2017

screen-shot-2016-11-25-at-9-09-29-amFriday Finds (a feature originated by Jenn at Books and A Beat) showcases the most interesting books that I have encountered during the last week and have added to my TBR wish list on Goodreads.

I am constantly adding titles to my never-ending TBR list and I can’t wait to share them with people.

Check out my newest and most wanted additions (or editions?…see what I did there!)

Continue reading “Friday Finds #17: March 24, 2017”

cjsreads: The Lost Children (Helen Phifer) @helenphifer1 @bookouture

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-6-18-39-pm

Another read down for #cjsreads and another pick from Bookouture!

This time around, we read The Lost Children by Helen Phifer.  Kids in an asylum?   Murder?  Revenge?

Sign us up!

Keep reading for a full synopsis of this book and to see what we thought…

Continue reading “cjsreads: The Lost Children (Helen Phifer) @helenphifer1 @bookouture”

Blog Tour: Six Stories (Matt Wesolowski) @ConcreteKraken @OrendaBooks

Screen Shot 2017-03-23 at 10.35.13 PM.png

Orenda is quickly becoming my favourite publisher. Everything they publish is gold; so needless to say, I am thrilled to be on the blog tour today for an Orenda title!

 Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski follows the podcast of Scott King as he hones in on the Scarclaw Fall tragedy; told through six different perspectives and a completely original narrative style, Wesolowski brilliantly sucks the reader in and makes them EXPERIENCE the story.

To start, I’d like to talk about the amazing cover of this book. I don’t usually comment on cover art, however, this one I cannot deny. The play on the forest, the lake with reflection and the frequency image is just suburb. This cover truly captures the novel in a nutshell.

This is not your typical crime story; there is no law enforcement leading an investigation nor is there a lawyer on the trail to save their client.

Instead, Wesolowski presents a story told through interviews and past recollections.   This one felt like I was on some sort of media binge, you know the kind where you get lost in a vortex of researching an unsolved crime or some strange trivia urban legend.  Throughout my reading, it reminded me of a true crime documentary that I would obsess over on Netflix (think, Making A Murderer).   Everything felt so real. It wrapped me up and held on tightly; I felt anxious. I felt worried. I couldn’t help but be consumed by the ominous text.    Truly, I think the only way this book could become more brilliant would be to experience it as an audiobook; it would truly blur the lines

Truly, I think the only way this book could become more brilliant would be to experience it as an audiobook; it would truly blur the lines between reality and fiction.

You want to get lost in a book? Wesolowski makes it easy.  I rated this one a 4/5 stars.

Thanks so much to Orenda books for the copy of this novel; it was my pleasure to provide an honest review.