Blog Blitz: Past Echoes (Graham Smith) @BLOODHOUNDBOOK @GRAHAMSMITH1972

Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 9.09.12 AM.pngAfter reading the previous novels in the Jake Boulder series by Graham Smith (Watching the Bodies and Kindred Killers), I was thrilled to be able to read the third book, Past Echoes, as part of the blog tour for Bloodhound Books! Both of the previous novels were fast-paced, suspenseful, action-packed and led by brooding protagonist, Jake Boulder.   Used to his drunken shenanigans and sarcastic banter, I was pleased that this novel showed us the softer, more personal side of Jake Boulder as he collides with a dead woman’s secret, his estranged father and a professional assassin.

So, first thing is first, I highly recommend reading the other two novels in the series before diving into this one. Not only are they fantastic bits of literature, but the storyline in this one directly ties into plot points from the first novels. I think it would be a little hard to follow without having that background knowledge.

I won’t go too much into the plot but there is one thing that I have said before, and I’ll say it again. I find Graham Smith’s writing to be unique like the work of Karin Slaughter. His prose is completely purposeful and done with taste; all of his graphic scenes add so much to the tone and nature of the text without being overdone or offensive.  I found this to be true in Past Echoes, from shootouts to car chases, Smith lays down the action without it feeling distracting.

Overall, I found this instalment in the Jake Boulder series to be a little less action packed the prior two but I did appreciate the softer side of Boulder (mind you, he is no spring chick but more like a shark with half of it’s teeth removed- still a little bit scary but not as vicious!)

If you have not picked up this series yet, I would highly recommend adding it to your TBR pile. It does not disappoint!

Thanks to Bloodhound Books and the author, Graham Smith, for a copy of this novel.  It was my pleasure to provide an honest review!

Be sure to visit the other stops on the Past Echoes Blog Blitz!

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Blog Tour: Deep Blue Trouble (Steph Broadribb) @OrendaBooks @crimethrillgirl

Screen Shot 2018-02-01 at 8.35.52 AMLast year, I read the action thriller Deep Down Dead by Steph Broadribb, and was instantly drawn in.   A kick- ass female protagonist, a sizzling love story, and an intricate, fast-paced plot had my eyes glued to the pages. This one lived up to the hype. So, when I found out that the second novel in the series, Deep Blue Trouble, was coming out, I was thrilled but also a little worried. A sophomore novel is a tough one to write, especially when the first would be such a tough act to follow. Well, have no fear, not only did Deep Blue Trouble keep me up late into the night but I think I may have loved this novel EVEN MORE than the first!

Lori Anderson, a single mother, and a bounty hunter managed to save her daughter, Dakota, but isn’t out of the woods yet. With Dakota’s cancer looming and JT, Dakota’s father and former mentor, behind bars on death row, Lori makes a shady deal with an FBI agent to bring in an on-the-run felon. Teaming up with another bounty hunter, Dez, tensions rise and the pressure is on.

Deep Blue Trouble opens pretty much immediately where Deep Down Dead ends off; smack dab in the middle of the action. Broadribb wastes no time hooking her reader.   I would absolutely recommend reading the first in the series before diving into book two; I think it could be a little hard to follow without having the background knowledge from the first book since they are so closely linked. I won’t say much more specifically about the plot, as to not ruin it, but it is completely filled with on the edge of your seat moments and fast paced thrillers. The chapters leave you feeling breathless and Broadribb does not give her readers a break!

This one gets roaring 5/5 stars from me; any thriller lovers will love this novel. And clear your schedule, you are not going to want to put this one down.  I cannot wait for book three!

Be sure to check out the other stops on the Deep Blue Trouble blog tour.

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

Blog Tour: Killing State (Judith O’Reilly) @judithoreilly #killingstate

Killing State.pngGood morning and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Killing State by Judith O’Reilly.   I am thrilled to be able to bring you a review as part of my stop today.

Every so often, I find myself in the mood for an action thriller. Killing State, the newest (and third!) novel by Judith O’Reilly, seemed to fit this bill for me.  A perfect blend of an action thriller, political thriller and romance thriller, from the first pages, I was captivated by O’Reilly’s prose; I had to keep turning the pages.

As the novel opens, we are introduced to Michael North, a man with a bullet in his brain from his time spent in the war that has heightened his neural pathways and has made him a killing machine.   Working for a government agency (known as The Board), he is thrown off his game when he is ordered to kill a woman, Honor Jones, who cannot seem to keep herself out of trouble while trying to do the right thing.   Conflicted, North must decide what to do. Does he follow orders? Does he let her go?

Continue reading “Blog Tour: Killing State (Judith O’Reilly) @judithoreilly #killingstate”

Book Review: The Driver (Hart Hanson)

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 8.17.20 AM.pngLately, I have been craving an action style thriller, so, when #cjsreads decided to make The Driver by Hart Hanson one of our August picks, I was excited to dive in! I am a bit of a sucker for Hart Hanson; he is the creator of Bones and one of the main writers on the show, so I was curious to see how his television writing would transfer over to a novel. Also, although he is American, he lived in Canada at one point, so he is pretty much an honorary Canadian. Needless to say, I had some high hopes for this book!

The novel opens with Michael Skellig, an army veteran/ex-military officer turned limo driver, waiting for his high-end client behind an upscale hotel. Feeling like something isn’t right, Skellig moves inside the hotel just in time to save his client from two gunmen but is too late for one of his body guards and Skellig ends up in custody for murder. Romantically involved with both the detective on the case and his lawyer, Skellig ends up released under the condition that he becomes his high-end client’s personal chauffeur and protector. Sounds all fine and dandy, except that someone clearly wants him dead and the only person who stands in the way is Skellig.

The general premise was interesting to me but from the first pages, I found the narration to be really problematic. It felt choppy. It felt sort of confusing and I really struggled to try and figure out exactly what was going on. Really, as I was reading, I continuously thought to myself, ‘I think this would make more sense on screen”, which truly does make sense given the background of the author. I also found, surprisingly, that this one moved fairly slowly. The pace does pick up eventually, but I found it slow and steady until about the 60% mark.

I didn’t find Skellig a particularly likeable protagonist but I did love the dry wit and humour that he brought to the text; I felt like his character was well developed and complex. Hanson did a great job with him.

Overall, this one left me feeling disappointed due to the choppy narrative style but I absolutely think that this one will end up being one of those “marmite books” that people will either absolutely love or hate. I think fans of something a little less traditional will really enjoy this book.

Thanks to the publisher and the author for a copy of this book; it was my pleasure to provide an honest review.

Want to know what Jessica and Chandra thought of this book?  Keep reading to see what they thought of The Driver.

Continue reading “Book Review: The Driver (Hart Hanson)”

Book Review: The Freedom Broker (K.J Howe) @headlinepg @KJHoweAuthor

Screen Shot 2017-03-06 at 8.10.16 PM.pngThea Paris, a kidnap negotiator, prides herself on remaining disconnected. The only way she succeeds at her job is by keeping it at arm’s length and not getting too invested. This goes out the window when her father, oil magnate, Christos Paris is taken on his sixtieth birthday.   Thea, battling past demons from her own brother’s kidnapping, calls in her team to help track her father down. Will she be able to save her father and prevent a second kidnapping that would destroy her family for good?

Continue reading “Book Review: The Freedom Broker (K.J Howe) @headlinepg @KJHoweAuthor”

Blog Tour: Deep Down Dead (Steph Broadribb) @OrendaBooks @crimethrillgirl

Screen Shot 2017-01-29 at 5.43.34 PM.pngThrilled to be taking part in the blog tour for Deep Down Dead, the action-packed thriller by Steph Broadribb. This is a book that lives up to the hype. From the first pages of Deep Down Dead, I was hooked. A kick- ass female protagonist, a sizzling love story, and an intricate, fast-paced plot had my eyes glued to the pages.

Lori Anderson, a single mother, and a bounty hunter has been doing her best to make ends meet when she is offered a substantial job with a pay cut she cannot refuse. Nine-year-old daughter in tow, Lori sets off and finds out that her fugitive is her former mentor (and love interest), JT.  A man who knows her cloudy past, JT is mixed up with the mob and a child exploitation ring operating out of a theme park.   When her daughter is taken, things become personal and Lori has her work cut out for her. As she works with JT to find her daughter’s captors, old flames ignite and Lori finds herself breaking all of her own rules.

This book truly becomes more than just an action thriller; sure, there are plenty of “on the edge of your seat” moments. But the core themes of the novel are so much deeper. Exploring redemption, revenge, the ferocity of a mother’s love and sins of the past, this novel engages its reader emotionally AND brings them on a wild ride.

Broadribb’s prose and characterization are riveting. From chapter one, I knew that I was going to love Lori Anderson. I have always been a fan of a female protagonist but this character stands out from the rest. Smart, fierce and dynamic, Lori is the type of character that you connect with immediately and root for from the very first line. The kind of character you want to avoid in a dark ally but also take out to dinner. Luckily for me, this won’t be the last of Lori Anderson! From what I understand, book two comes out in 2018.

This one gets roaring 5/5 stars from me; if you like an action thriller with an impenetrable plot then I’d recommend this novel.  And clear your schedule, you are not going to want to put this one down.

Thanks to Orenda and Steph Broadribb for my copy of this book; it was my pleasure to provide an honest review

Be sure to check out the other stops on the Deep Down Dead tour!

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