2014.45 REVIEW – Angel Killer by Andrew Mayne

Angel Killer
by Andrew Mayne

Copyright: 2012, 2014
Pages: 353
Rating: 4/5
Read: Sept. 29 – Oct. 10, 2014
Challenge: RIP IX
Yearly count: 45
Format: Print
Source: TLC Book Tour
Series: Jessica Blackwood # 1

Angel KillerBlurb: FBI agent Jessica Blackwood believes she’s left her complicated life as a gifted magician behind her . . . until a killer with seemingly supernatural powers puts her talents to the ultimate test.

A hacker who identifies himself only as “Warlock” brings down the FBI’s website and posts a code in its place that leads to a Michigan cemetery, where a dead girl is discovered rising from the ground . . . as if she tried to crawl out of her own grave.

Born into a dynasty of illusionists, Jessica Blackwood is destined to become its next star—until she turns her back on her troubled family to begin a new life in law enforcement. But FBI consultant Dr. Jeffrey Ailes’s discovery of an old magic magazine will turn Jessica’s world upside down. Faced with a crime that appears beyond explanation, Ailes has nothing to lose—and everything to gain—by taking a chance on an agent raised in a world devoted to achieving the seemingly impossible.

The body in the cemetery is only the first in the Warlock’s series of dark miracles. Thrust into the media spotlight, with time ticking away until the next crime, can Jessica confront her past to stop a depraved killer? If she can’t, she may become his next victim.


Review: I received a copy of this book for free in conjunction with a TLC Book tour, all opinions expressed below are my own.

I accepted this book for review with the reservation that I am not generally into magic. It just stretches my boundaries of what is believable. But there was something about the description that really drew me in … probably just the FBI aspect, to be honest.

Either way, I am so glad that I was given the opportunity to try this book. It worked. Really, really well, in my opinion. I found myself flying through the pages. There were a lot of twists and turns throughout the book that kept me guessing until the very end – and I never did have things figured out!

Jessica is a great character, but her self-doubting trait kind of got a little irritating at times. I like a little more confidence personally. And Damian – what a character! I don’t really know what else to say about that…

Overall, I definitely think this is the great start of a new series that I think will attract a very wide audience … magic lovers, mystery lovers, it’s just an all-around good book that I would definitely recommend!


Andrew MayneAbout the author: Andrew Mayne is the star of A&E’s magic reality show Don’t Trust Andrew Mayne, and has worked for David Copperfield, Penn & Teller, and David Blaine. He lives in Los Angeles.

Connect with him through his website, Facebook or follow him on Twitter.

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 Purchase Links

Amazon | IndieBound | Barnes & Noble

Other tour stops:

Tuesday, September 23rd: Always With a Book

Wednesday, September 24th: Living in the Kitchen with Puppies

Thursday, September 25th: Priscilla and Her Books

Thursday, September 25th: Mysteries and My Musings – spotlight

Thursday, September 25th: Why Girls Are Weird

Monday, September 29th: From the TBR Pile

Monday, September 29th: Mysteries and My Musings – review

Wednesday, October 1st: The Road to Here

Friday, October 3rd: Not in Jersey

Monday, October 6th: BoundbyWords

Tuesday, October 7th: Ace and Hoser Blook

Wednesday, October 8th: Book Loving Hippo

Thursday, October 9th: Open Book Society

Monday, October 13th: Tales of a Book Addict

Tuesday, October 14th: No More Grumpy Bookseller

Wednesday, October 15th: Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks

Wednesday, October 15th: A Bookworm’s World

Thursday, October 16th: Book Marks the Spot

Friday, October 17th: Girl Lost in a Book

Friday, October 24th: A Dream Within a Dream

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2014.44 REVIEW – Ryder by Nick Pengelley

Ryder
by Nick Pengelley

Copyright: 2013, 2014
Pages: 280
Rating: 3.5/5
Read: Sept. 23 – 28, 2014
Challenge: RIP IX
Yearly count: 44
Format: E-Book
Source: NetGalley via TLC Book Tour
Series: Ayesha Ryder #1

RyderBlurb: As Israeli and Palestinian leaders prepare to make a joint announcement at the Tower of London, an influential scholar is tortured and murdered in his well-appointed home in St. John’s Wood. Academic researcher Ayesha Ryder believes the killing is no coincidence. Sir Evelyn Montagu had unearthed shocking revelations about T. E. Lawrence—the famed Lawrence of Arabia. Could Montagu have been targeted because of his discoveries?

Ryder’s search for answers takes her back to her old life in the Middle East and into a lion’s den of killers and traitors. As she draws the attention of agents from both sides of the conflict, including detectives from Scotland Yard and MI5, Ryder stumbles deeper into Lawrence’s secrets, an astounding case of royal blackmail, even the search for the Bible’s lost Ark of the Covenant.

Every step of the way, the endgame grows more terrifying. But when an attack rocks London, the real players show their hand—and Ayesha Ryder is left holding the final piece of the puzzle.


Review: I received a copy of this book for free via NetGalley in conjunction with a TLC Book tour, all opinions expressed below are my own.

When I was first pitched this book I was immediately intrigued. I love a good action adventure novel. What I didn’t realize was that this book would have a lot of references to the Middle East. I am not a very political person. In all honesty, I know very little about what goes on in that side of the world. So for me, this book was a little over my head in regards to everything Middle Eastern.

That being said, I still liked the book. Because I liked Ayesha’s character. I wanted her to succeed. There came a point in the book when someone who I thought was trustworthy did a total 360 on Ayesha. I actually gasped out loud. And from then on I was hooked. It was at that point when I went from being slightly intrigued by this book to being full-on, Ayesha-has-to-succeed-no-matter-what. There were so many twists and turns, but it was that one revelation that really turned the whole book around for me.

The writing was very good. The action was extremely well written. The storyline, while I personally found it somewhat hard to follow just because of my lack of Middle Eastern knowledge, was still easy enough to follow that I wasn’t completely lost. The characters were interesting (Lady Madrigal Carey! What. A. Character!)

Overall it’s definitely a good book, but not necessarily the easiest book to read just because of the Middle Eastern slant. But I’d definitely like to revisit Ayesha again in the future.

Recommended.


There is a GIVEAWAY included in this tour. For a chance to win a $25 gift card to the e-retailer of your choice AND a copy of Ryder, please CLICK HERE.


About the author: Nick Pengelley is the author of the political thriller Ryder. Australian by birth, he’s had careers in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom as a law professor, legal consultant, and analyst on Middle East politics, which is his passion. Pengelley lives in Toronto with his wife, Pamela.

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Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-a-Million | Barnes & Noble

Other tour stops:

Monday, September 22nd: Bell, Book & Candle

Monday, September 22nd: Omnimystery News – guest post

Tuesday, September 23rd: No More Grumpy Bookseller

Wednesday, September 24th: D. L. Kamstra | Writing about Stories

Thursday, September 25th: From the TBR Pile

Monday, September 29th: Reading Reality

Tuesday, September 30th: Tales of a Book Addict

Wednesday, October 1st: Patricia’s Wisdom

Monday, October 6th: Crime Book Club

Tuesday, October 7th: Read Love Blog

Wednesday, October 8th: 2 Kids and Tired Books

Thursday, October 9th: Queen of All She Reads

Friday, October 10th: A Fantastical Librarian

Friday, October 10th: Mystery Playground – Drinks with Reads guest post

Monday, October 13th: By the Book Reviews

Tuesday, October 14th: the smitten word

Wednesday, October 15th: Dwell in Possibility

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2014.43 REVIEW – I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga

I Hunt Killers
by Barry Lyga

Copyright: 2012
Pages: 282
Rating: 2.5/5
Read: Sept. 7 – 14, 2014
Challenge: RIP IX
Yearly count: 43
Format: E-Book
Source: NetGalley
Series: Jasper Dent #1

I Hunt KillersBlurb: What if the world’s worst serial killer…was your dad?
Jasper (Jazz) Dent is a likable teenager. A charmer, one might say.
But he’s also the son of the world’s most infamous serial killer, and for Dear Old Dad, Take Your Son to Work Day was year-round. Jazz has witnessed crime scenes the way cops wish they could–from the criminal’s point of view.
And now bodies are piling up in Lobo’s Nod.

In an effort to clear his name, Jazz joins the police in a hunt for a new serial killer. But Jazz has a secret–could he be more like his father than anyone knows?


Review: I received a copy of this book for free via NetGalley, all opinions expressed below are my own.

I first saw this book in a NetGalley email. I don’t read a ton of young adult, but something about this book really caught my attention. I requested it and was excited to see that I had been approved for it.

Overall, I am a little disappointed in this book. It started out pretty interesting. But then somewhere along the way I really started disliking Jazz’s character and it all kind of went downhill from there. I was just so tired of his attitude. I get that he’s a teenager and he’s angsty. I get that his circumstances suck. But I could hardly stand the “oh, I think I am a serial killer because my dad is one” attitude that he kept taking. Deep down I want to believe he’s a good kid. But he seems to think otherwise. And it was a contradiction that just didn’t work out for me.

I actually got to about 70% done and was seriously considering giving up on the book. But at that point you get so far in and you don’t really want to quit. So I persevered on and finished it. I didn’t gain or lose anything from reading this book, and I think that’s why I had such a problem with it. It wasn’t horrible, yet it wasn’t very good. It was just so-so. But the potential. Oh the potential was so there. The whole idea of what happens when you’re the kid of America’s most infamous serial killer … that really was interesting. But the execution just didn’t work for me. And that’s really disappointing to me.

Maybe I didn’t “get” this book because I’m not a huge YA reader. I don’t know. But it didn’t really work for me.

Changes Changes Changes!

Wow is my life just about to get totally insane!!

Since 2008, my husband and I have been living in Paducah, KY. We were brought here by a job opportunity at the City for my husband. It’s an hour away from home for us, and overall, we’ve been very happy with our time here.

But there comes a point in time when you want to move home. This happened shortly after we welcomed Garrett two years ago. We’ve been antsy to be closer to our families ever since then.

But engineering jobs in southern Illinois are few and far between. So we knew that it would be a long and difficult road to get us back home.

My father owns a concrete company. He has wanted my husband to come into the company for quite some time, but the timing was never right. Three weeks ago he had a plant manager put in his notice. Shortly thereafter, he offered my husband the position. And he accepted.

So we are moving back home. Finally.

This is coming along with some other things going on. We have a house to put on the market and sell. We have to find and purchase a new home. We have to find a good daycare to place Garrett into (the first one we toured last week was a huge bust).

So my life is about to be turned completely inside out. But when we’re all settled it will be well worth all the hassle that comes with moving out of state.

I’m posting this because I have a feeling that I’m going to be going very quiet here on the blog. I’m just not going to have the time until things get a little more settled. I have previous commitments that I will still be able to meet, but I will most definitely be slowing down for some time.

Just wanted to let everyone know what was going on in my neck of the woods. Hope everyone is doing well. Have a great weekend! Happy reading!

Book Spotlight: Killer WASPs by Amy Korman

image001Killer WASPs

A Killer WASPs Mystery

Amy Korman

Crime really stings in Killer WASPs (Witness Impulse e-book, on sale 9/16/2014, $1.99), a Witness Original from debut author Amy Korman. If you love cocktails, antiquing, parties, shopping and the occasional crime-lite thrown in amid vodka tonics and tennis matches at the club, then you’ll love Killer WASPs. The first installment in this modern and cozy series features crime, romance, and fun amid the classic estates of Philadelphia’s Main Line.

Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, is a haven for East Coast WASPs, where tennis tournaments and cocktails at the club are revered traditions. Little happens in the sleepy suburb, and that is the way the Lilly Pulitzer–clad residents prefer it. So when antiques store owner Kristin Clark and her portly basset hound stumble upon the area’s newest real estate developer lying unconscious beneath the hydrangea bushes lining the driveway of one of Bryn Mawr’s most distinguished estates, the entire town is abuzz with gossip and intrigue.

When the attacker strikes again just days later, Kristin and her three best friends—Holly, a glamorous chicken nugget heiress with a penchant for high fashion; Joe, a decorator who’s determined to land his own HGTV show; and Bootsie, a preppy but nosy newspaper reporter—join forces to solve the crime. While their investigation takes them to cocktail parties, flea markets, and the country club, they must unravel the mystery before the assailant claims another victim.

Fans of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series will enjoy shaking up the Philadelphia Main Line. To learn more, check out the Killer WASPs Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/killerWASPsseries.

About the Author: Amy Korman is a former senior editor and staff writer for Philadelphia Magazine, and author of Frommer’s Guide to Philadelphia. She has written for Town & Country, House Beautiful, Men’s Health, and Cosmopolitan. Killer WASPS is her first novel.

About Witness:  Witness is the new Impulse imprint from HarperCollins Publishers devoted to thrillers, mysteries, and stories of suspense. Debuting in Fall 2013, Witness will serve as a launch pad for a range of exciting titles, including new publications, previously self-published bestsellers, newly digitized backlist classics, and international books previously unavailable in the US.  For more on this and other Witness titles, please visit http://wmmorrow.hc.com/witnessimpulse

Buy Links:
HarperCollins | Barnes & Noble | Amazon | iBooks

Book Spotlight: Misdirection by Austin Williams

02_Misdirection

Publication Date: June 22, 2014

Diversion Books

Formats: eBook, Paperback

Genre: Thriller, Mystery, Crime Fiction

Series: The Rusty Diamond Trilogy (Book One)

Add to GR ButtonA street magician needs more than sleight-of-hand to survive getting embroiled in a murder case in this blistering novel of suspense, perfect for fans of Harlan Coben and George Pelecanos.

After years of chasing fame and hedonistic excess in the bright lights of Las Vegas, Rusty ìThe Ravenî Diamond has returned home to Ocean City to piece his life back together. When he finds himself an innocent suspect in his landlordís brutal murder, Rusty abandons all hope of maintaining a tranquil existence. Acting on impulse, he digs into the investigation just enough to anger both the police and a local drug cartel.

As the unsolved case grows more complex, claiming new victims and inciting widespread panic, Rusty feels galvanized by the adrenaline heís been missing for too long. But his newfound excitement threatens to become an addiction, leading him headfirst into an underworld heís been desperately trying to escape.

Austin Williams creates an unforgettable protagonist in Rusty, a flawed but relatable master of illusion in very real danger. As the suspense builds to an explosively orchestrated climax, Williams paints a riveting portrait of both a cityóand a manóon the edge.

Buy the Book

Amazon US | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo

 

About the Author

03_Austin WilliamsThe new thriller by Austin Williams, Misdirection, is now available from Diversion Books. It is the first novel of The Rusty Diamond Trilogy. Williams is the author of the acclaimed suspense novels Crimson Orgy and The Platinum Loop. He is the co-author (with Erik Quisling) of Straight Whisky: A Living History of Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll on the Sunset Strip. He lives in Los Angeles.

Follow Austin Williams on Twitter and Goodreads.

 

Misdirection Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, September 22

Review at The Bookworm

Tuesday, September 23

Review at Sitting in the Stacks

Wednesday, September 24

Spotlight at Tales of a Book Addict

Thursday, September 25

Review at Reading Room Book Reviews

Monday, September 29

Spotlight & Giveaway at Peeking Between the Pages

Tuesday, September 30

Review at The Librarian Fatale

Wednesday, October 1

Review at Any Good Book

Review & Giveaway at The Crime Scene

Tuesday, October 2

Review at The Discerning Reader

Friday, October 3

Interview at Any Good Book

Monday, October 6

Review at Me and My Books

Review & Interview at Back Porchervations

Tuesday, October 7

Spotlight at Layered Pages

Wednesday, October 8

Spotlight at Flashlight Commentary

Thursday, October 9

Review at Boom Baby Reviews

Review & Interview at A Cup Of Tea & A Big Book

Monday, October 13

Review & Giveaway at Book Reviews & More by Kathy

Tuesday, October 14

Spotlight at CelticLady’s Reviews

Wednesday, October 15

Review at Book Nerd

Friday, October 17

Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

Review at Beth’s Book Reviews

 

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Top Ten Tuesday – September 16, 2014

toptentuesday

The topic this week is …Top Authors I’ve Only Read One Book From But NEED to Read More

I have a tendency to read the first book in a series and then never moving on. So I have a lot of authors I’ve only read one book from that I would love to read more from! In no particular order:

  1. Chris Pavone … I read The Accident earlier this year and LOVED it! I also snatched up his debut, The Expats on my Nook when it was on sale for like $1.99 a few months back, but have yet to read it….
  2. Lee Child … I read Killing Floor  a few months ago and enjoyed it. But I have yet to continue on with the series … for no good reason at all … other than time ;)
  3. Marcia Clark … I read The Competition on a whim just last month and really, really enjoyed it. I also have her first book on my physical TBR shelf and I *NEED* to get to it soon!
  4. Chevy Stevens … I read Still Missing back in 2011 and really enjoyed it, but haven’t read anything else by Ms. Stevens … and I have another book of hers on my shelf (actually it’s an ARC that I was sent and never got to … oops)
  5. Karin Slaughter … I read Blindsighted last year and enjoyed it, but once again I have that terrible habit of starting with the first book in a series and then never going any further.
  6. Ted Bell … I read Hawke last year and well, I’m sure you can fill in the blanks (just follow the pattern that seems to be appearing rather obvious.)
  7. Scott Turow … It actually took me a couple of times to get into Presumed Innocent, but once I finally persevered past that 50 page mark I loved it! And have yet to read anything else by Mr Turow…
  8. James Rollins … I read Sandstorm while I was pregnant with Garrett and enjoyed it. But somewhere along the line I have managed to collect a few more of Rollins’ books on my shelves, but they continue to sit unread.
  9. Adam Mitzner … I scored an ARC of A Case of Redemption last year and enjoyed it a lot. Enough to make me go out and purchase Mr. Mitzner’s first book, which I never read. *Sigh*
  10. Kate White … I read Eyes on You in conjunction with a book tour and enjoyed it. I have had The Sixes on my shelf forever … I keep saying “one day”.

Wow … I have a really bad habit of reading an author one time with every intention of continuing on with the series or backlist just to proceed to fail, miserably.

Too many books … not enough time.