Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT Epic #Fantasy The Jack Of Ruin by @stephenmerlino

Today’s team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading The Jack Of Ruin by Stephen C. Merlino

26791677

The Jack of Ruin is the much anticipated…

(You know, when people say that I always get belligerent wondering just who these “people” are that were waiting with bated breath. So, I’ll tell you. It was me. And John, and likely other people, but I don’t know them. So, yeah, I’m making that grand statement on the authority of my own feelings!)

…sequel to The Jack of Souls. If you took my advice three years ago and read The Jack of Souls with it’s goodish guy and it’s new worlds and magics, culture clashes and ideals, angry immortals and horses and general epic fantasyishness, I’m excited to tell you that this installment did not disappoint. The epicness continues, the good guys have a tendency to be a little grey rather than white and it seems vows were made to be broken…

And if you didn’t?

What are you waiting for, get reading!

Would I recommend it? If you are a lover of epic fantasy read The Jack of Souls, then have this one ready because it picks up right where the previous leaves off!

Book description

Harric’s immortal enemy, Sir Bannus, lies defeated in the valley, his army buried under tons of mountain rubble—a rock fall that Harric brought down with the magic of the Unseen Moon. For now, the quest to deliver the Queen’s peace treaty to the mysterious Kwendi is safe.

But Sir Bannus rises from defeat with Harric’s name on his lips, vengeance in his fist, and a vow to capture the treaty-bearers and spark war to bring ruin upon the Queen. To Harric, death would be preferable, for if she falls, Sir Bannus or another of the Old Ones will reclaim the throne and cast women and bastards like Harric back into slavery.

Yet Harric’s companions condemn his use of trickery and magic to fight Sir Bannus—tools that saved them once before, and which he believes are as vital as swords for the Queen’s protection.

When treachery, discord, and death doom the quest, Harric must choose between the love and regard of his friends and his self-chosen destiny as Her Majesty’s Unseen protector.

It is a choice that will forever bind him to one…and bring ruin to the other.

About the author

Stephen Merlino lives in Seattle, WA, where he writes, plays and teaches English to teens. He lives with the world’s most desirable woman and two fabulous children, one cat, and three attack chickens.

Growing up in Seattle in constant rain drove Stephen indoors as a child, so he ended up reading a lot. When at the age of eleven he discovered J.R.R. Tolkein, Terry Brooks, and other fantasy writers, he dreamed of writing his own epic tales.

About the time a fifth reading of the Lord of the Rings no longer delivered the old magic, he attended the University of Washington and fell in love with Chaucer and Shakespeare and all things English. Sadly, the closest he got to England then was The Unicorn Pub on University Way, & that was run by a Scot named Angus. Nevertheless, he sampled Angus’s weird ales, and devoured Angus’s steak & kidney pie (with real offal!).

Stephen later backpacked Britain, where he discovered a magnificent retrospective of Henry VIII’s body development–from childhood to old age–captured in a dozen suits of armor. Each suit was a 3D snapshot in steel of his exact body shape in a specific moment in time. Stephen observed His Majesty was glorious when young, but as an old man the king corpulent and developed what was either elephantiasis or an unhealthy infatuation with his codpiece.

Stratford-upon-Avon inspired Stephen to return the following year to study Shakespeare at the U of Reading. He now teaches Shakespeare, and, by following The Bard’s example of plot thievery, built one of the subplots of A Midsummer Night’s Dream into The Jack of Souls. It’s one of his favorite parts of the story.

Stephen C. Merlino

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT #Historical #Fantasy The Falcon Flies Alone by @GabrielleAuthor

Today’s team review is from Jessie, she blogs here  http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading The Falcon Flies Alone by Gabrielle Mathieu

31188498

When a book starts with a naked woman on a roof wondering how she got there and more pressingly how on earth she’s going to get down, you might think that the plot of this book would have you in it’s grip. Instead I found that the plot, though smooth, was almost too flat and it was the force of the characters that kept me reading. From the not super likable heroine to the villain who’s image was drawn with such depth he gave me nightmares, the characters were easily the stars of the novel.

Would I recommend it? The story line could have used less substance abuse, and more substance.  Although to be fair it was mostly substance abuse in the name of science. Creepy experiment on people science but science… well, with a little witch doctor voodoo thrown in for good measure. Fortunately the characters saved the book. This is Mathieu’s first novel and I look forward to seeing what she writes next.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Gabrielle Mathieu lived on three continents by the age of eight. She’d experienced the bustling bazaars of Pakistan, the serenity of Swiss mountain lakes, and the chaos of the immigration desk at the JFK airport. Perhaps that’s why she developed an appetite for the unusual and disorienting. Her fantasy books are grounded in her experience of different cultures and interest in altered states of consciousness (mostly white wine and yoga these days). The Falcon Flies Alone is her debut novel.

Gabrielle Mathieu

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT Alt #Rome series book #3 Successio by @alison_morton

Today’s team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie is reading her way through the Roma Nova series by Alison Morton. Today she reviews Book #3 Successio 

22246754

When a series is ongoing it’s always number three that makes or breaks it for me. Either I’ve had enough of the same ol’ same ol’ or I’m hooked for life.

Roman Nova has got me hooked for life!
I loved that the new challenges life threw at the characters befit their older ages and yet there was plenty of the alternate history, women kicking butt and page turning thriller that drew me to the series in the first place.
Would I recommend it?
For sure! Just start with Inceptio and keep on going! As for me, I can’t wait to get my hands on the next book!
Book description

Roma Nova – the last remnant of the Roman Empire that has survived into the 21st century – is at peace. Carina Mitela, the heir of a leading family, but choosing the life of an officer in the Praetorian Guard Special Forces, is not so sure.

She senses danger crawling towards her when she encounters a strangely self-possessed member of the unit hosting their exchange exercise in Britain. When a blackmailing letter arrives from a woman claiming to be her husband Conrad’s lost daughter and Conrad tries to shut Carina out, she knows the threat is real.

Trying to resolve a young man’s indiscretion twenty-five years before turns into a nightmare that not only threatens to destroy all the Mitelae but also attacks the core of the imperial family itself. With her enemy holding a gun to the head of the heir to the imperial throne, Carina has to make the hardest decision of her life…

About the author

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…

The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.

Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years. Sign up to Alison’s newsletter for a FREE ebook of series starter INCEPTIO: http://eepurl.com/ckNeFL

Alison Morton

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT Alternative #Rome Perfiditas by @alison_morton #TuesdayBookBlog

Today’s second team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading Perfiditas by Alison Morton

18584476

Years have passed since the events in Inceptio but our main character Carina is no less awesome for it.

It’s possible she’s quite a bit more awesome, or maybe it was because this book dives a bit deeper into the culture of Roman Nova (the society founded by Ancient Romans and ruled by women ever since) but regardless I enjoyed this book even more than the first.

Carina continues to overcome obstacles by being a general kick-ass lady, and yet stays remarkably human and even, dare I say, feminine when dealing with controversy as she finds herself thrown into the middle of a conspiracy to overthrow the government.

Would I recommend it? This book certainly earned the “thriller” in it’s series title (Roman Nova Thriller Series). I had a terrible time walking away from it once I was a few chapters in. Which is basically the best problem one can have with a book. But, of course, start with book one.  Starting midway through a series has the potential to upset the natural order of the universe. Consequences can be dire, don’t risk it!

You can find a review of the first book here: https://behindthewillows.com/2017/08/02/inceptio-by-alison-morton/

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Book Description

Present day, alternate reality. Captain Carina Mitela of the Praetorian Guard Special Forces is in trouble – one colleague has tried to kill her and another has set a trap to incriminate her in a conspiracy to topple the government of Roma Nova. Founded sixteen hundred years ago by Roman dissidents and ruled by women, Roma Nova barely survived a devastating coup d’état thirty years ago. Carina swears to prevent a repeat and not merely for love of country.

Seeking help from a not quite legal old friend could wreck her marriage to the enigmatic Conrad. Once proscribed and operating illegally, she risks being terminated by both security services and conspirators. As she struggles to overcome the desperate odds and save her beloved Roma Nova and her own life, she faces the ultimate betrayal…

About the author

Alison Morton

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…
The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.
Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years. Sign up to Alison’s newsletter for a FREE ebook of series starter INCEPTIO: http://eepurl.com/ckNeFL

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT Inceptio by @alison_morton alternative #Rome fiction

Today’s second team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading Inceptio by Alison Morton

43841896. sy475

If you are looking for insight into what it might be like to live in an alternate reality in a civilization founded by Romans and ruled by women, this book will touch on that.

If you are wondering how it would be to step from a nobody into the top tier of society, this story flirts with that.

If what you really want is to read a book where, when circumstances get scary and difficult, a woman trains hard, becomes awesome and then kicks butt, this is your book.

Would I recommend it? I was almost disappointed there wasn’t more insight into the different culture the main character finds herself in. Almost. But I couldn’t be at all disappointed because I was too busy turning pages. This story had me hooked!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Book description

New York, present day, alternate reality. Karen Brown, angry and frightened after a kidnap attempt, has a choice – being eliminated by government enforcer Jeffery Renschman or fleeing to mysterious Roma Nova, her dead mother’s homeland in Europe.

Founded sixteen centuries ago by Roman exiles and ruled by women, Roma Nova gives Karen safety, at a price, and a ready-made family. Just as she’s finding her feet, a shocking discovery about her new lover, special forces officer Conrad Tellus, isolates her.

But the enforcer has crossed to Europe to pursue her. Unable to rely on anybody else, she undergoes intensive training, develops fighting skills and becomes an undercover cop. But crazy with bitterness at his past failures, Renschman sets a trap for her, knowing she has no choice but to spring it..

About the author

Alison Morton

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…

The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.

Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT The Darcy Monologues anthology @xtnaboyd @JenettaJames

Today’s team review is from Jessie she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading The Darcy Monologues anthology by various authors

34188549

 

I have read Pride and Prejudice, more than once and, while I quite like the book, I have to say (at risk of being stoned by hoards of angry women ) that Mr. Darcy is not my ideal man.  Please, don’t write me off yet because, while I might prefer someone a little more rugged than ballroom ready, I can see why women have pined over Mr. Darcy for over 200 years.

Two hundred years is an impressive amount of time, which mostly makes me wonder why there are still men out there claiming to be confused about what women want. Hello? Guys? Mr. Darcy has been making women sigh for two centuries! If what a woman wants is still confounding you, possibly you should take a lesson from Darcy himself.

Boys, all you have to do is master the combination of wealth, wit, a willingness to address your faults and an all-consuming passion for your woman of choice.  In fact, if you can check all these off your list, all those women will probably let you insult them terribly before giving you a second chance and eventually succumbing to your charm.

All this brings us to the Darcy Monologues. Depending on your preferences you can either read these to further your fantasies of Mr. Darcy in your quest for his real life counter part, or (I’m talking to the confused men out there) you could read these as research if you are still trying to figure out just what will set the women’s hearts aflutter for you.

The Darcy Monologues is a collection of short stories, about the infamous Mr. Darcy himself. The first half, set in the 1800’s Pride and Prejudice era, follow the original story fairly closely, but from Mr. Darcy’s view. Some of them address what happened after the book, some let you know what was going on in Mr. Darcy’s head and some explore the, ahh, steamier side of things… The second half are contemporary versions. Mr. Darcy heads West (now that was my kind of Darcy), runs radio stations, and plays major league baseball all while pursuing the enviable Ms. Bennet.

Would I recommend it? My only issue with this anthology was that I couldn’t just hop from one story to the next. I found early on that too many different Mr. Darcys talking to too many Bingleys muddled my head to no end. Once I realized I had a one story a night limit I enjoyed my daily dose of Darcy completely! An excellent collection for anyone who enjoys a good tale of pride and prejudice.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Book Description

“You must allow me to tell you…”
For over two hundred years, Jane Austen’s Mr. Darcy has captivated readers’ imaginations as the ultimate catch. Rich. Powerful. Noble. Handsome. And yet, as Miss Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” is established through Elizabeth Bennet’s fine eyes, how are we to know his mind? How does Darcy progress from “She is tolerable: but not handsome enough to tempt me” to “I thought only of you”?
In this romance anthology, fifteen Austenesque authors assemble to sketch Darcy’s character through a series of re-imaginings, set in the Regency through contemporary times—from faithful narratives to the fanciful. Herein “The Darcy Monologues”, the man himself reveals his intimate thoughts, his passionate dreams, and his journey to love—all told with a previously concealed wit and enduring charm.
Stories by: Susan Adriani * Sara Angelini * J. Marie Croft * Karen M Cox * Jan Hahn * Jenetta James * Lory Lilian * KaraLynne Mackrory * Beau North * Ruth Phillips Oakland * Natalie Richards * Sophia Rose * Joana Starnes * Melanie Stanford * Caitlin Williams

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS |

 

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT The Spirit Tree by @KathrynMHearst #Supernatural #Fantasy

Today’s team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading The Spirit Tree by Kathryn M Hearst

29934671

I have found a book that may be just what you are looking for!

(Okay, that’s not actually true. Rosie Amber found it.  I just read it. She’s a great helper of book finding and you should go look at her blog!)

-If you are fan of the supernatural, this book may be for you.

(You know, like shape shifting, Native American magic sort of supernatural that comes at you all fast paced and crazy.  No napping in this book! There are also  a few… hundred… snakes in this book as well. Just in case you are one of those people who will string me up by my toes if I don’t warn you about such things.)

-If you are fan of the buxom girl meets older, like really, seriously, supernaturally, older man, this book may be for you.

(Yes, it’s been done… lots… because it works. So, go ahead roll your eyes, get it out of your system and then just enjoy the whole older man love triangle thing. Yup, there are two love interests, go ahead and get over that too. If we all stopped reading and enjoying books with such things, authors would probably stop writing them. But, that’s not really happening now is it?)

-If you like a bit of nudity in your books, this may be for you.

(That’s right nudity, not sex.  I think I can safely say that this book has the highest amount of nudity for the least amount of sex I’ve ever read.  I find this to be unusual and note worthy and you may do with that information what you will.)

-If you like some older sassy female characters, this book may be for you.

(The main character has an aunt and a grandma that are the sort of older conniving women we may not prefer to have meddling in our own lives but that we all secretly aspire to be.)

Would I recommend it? Maybe, do you fit any of the above criteria? This book was fun, fast read. It’s not for everyone but it’s an enjoyable book if you are a paranormal action romance reader. (Which is a mouthful of a genre, and possibly not really a genre… but it should be, it really should be.)

Book Description

Tessa, a southern girl with a crazy family and a brand new college degree, wants nothing more than for her life to start. When her uncle dies unexpectedly, she inherits more than his old truck. Lifetimes of family secrets unravel and nothing will ever be the same. After learning that she is not only a Fire Bird, but also half Nunnehi—the Cherokee equivalent to a fairy—Tessa is forced to fight for her life. Good thing she was raised by two tough southern ladies.

About the author

Kathryn M. Hearst

Kathryn M. Hearst is a southern girl with a love of the dark and strange. She has been a story teller her entire life, as a child she took people watching to new heights by creating back stories of complete strangers. Besides writing, she has a passion for shoes, vintage clothing, antique British cars, music, musicians and all things musical (including theatre). Kate lives in central Florida with her chocolate lab, Jolene; and two rescue pups, Jagger and Roxanne. She is a self-proclaimed nerd, raising a nerdling.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

#HotNews We’ve been nominated for a Best Book Blogger in the 2017 BloggersBash awards and we need your votes. Please vote here (Best Book Blogger)

Thank you.

http://sachablack.co.uk/2017/05/18/2017-annual-bloggers-bash-awards-voting-open-bloggersbash-bloggersbash/

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT MADAM TULIP & The Knave of Hearts by @DaveAhernWriter

Today’s Team Review is from Jessie she blogs at http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading Madam Tulip and the Knave of Hearts by David Ahern

32180530

I’m so grateful that I was once reeled in by a cute frog on the cover of a book. That book, Madam Tulip, introduced me to Derry O’Donnell and her accompanying, charmingly over the top, literary comrades.

David Ahern’s newest book cover isn’t as cute…… but that’s alright because I loved it even more!

Would I recommend it? Yes! This is the new series I’m recommending to anyone who loves a humorous mystery! It made me giggle (so many times) and almost gag (there’s an eyeball…) and had me on the edge of my seat (Well, that’s just a lie on my part. I was reading in bed. But it did have me refusing to put the book down and go to bed at a reasonable time) all at once. A perfect fun, quick read!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Book Description

Madam Tulip! Actress, fortune-teller, psychic, sleuth!
When out-of-work actress Derry O’Donnell moonlights as celebrity fortune-teller Madam Tulip in an English Stately home, she’s trying to make some cash. Instead, she is drawn into an alien world of wealth, titled privilege and family secrets. 
A countess once a chorus girl, a gambling earl and his daughters, a cultured and handsome art expert—all caught in a terrifying web of ghastly threats, murder and abduction. As an aristocratic engagement party turns into a nightmare, Derry and her friend Bruce face the prospect of a gruesome and infamous death. 
Madame Tulip and the Knave of Hearts is the second in a series of thrilling and hilarious Tulip adventures in which Derry O’Donnell, celebrity fortune-teller and reluctant amateur detective, plays the most exciting and perilous roles of her acting life, drinks borage tea, and fails to understand her parents.
 

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT MADAM TULIP by @DaveAhernWriter “constant humour”

Today’s Team Review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Jessie has been reading Madam Tulip by David Ahern

There is a frog on the cover of this book and it’s pretty. And so I decided that I needed to read this book. (I’m pretty sure that’s what you call successful cover art!)

Would I recommend it? Maybe you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover but you sure can choose one. Frog loving isn’t even required to enjoy this book! I mean, you should love frogs anyway but amphibian love is unnecessary to appreciate a book with a main character who, rather accidentally, gets caught up in the world of celebrities when she decides to become a fortune teller. Unfortunately, as she soon finds out, there are some seriously shady sides to a few of those celebrities.  The action is fast, the humor is constant and frogs are discussed. But it wasn’t the frogs that have me recommending this book, it’s the just slightly over the top characters and the just a little bit crazy plot.  Something about the tiny bit of excess in both turns this from just another female lead action book to a book that you really need to bring along next time you hit the beach!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

NEW #TuesdayBookBlog The #RBRT Reviewer Profiles Jessie Stevens @behindthewillow

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Reviewers on the #RBRT are very busy hard working people who give their time freely, so I thought it was about time readers had the chance to meet them and find out a bit more about them.

Jessie Stevens

 

Jessie Stevens is a Wisconsin, USA girl for life!

Jessie has been reading and reviewing books at behindthewillows.com for over five years!

She can be found enthusiastically tweeting away, (@behindthewillow) as well as grumpily accepting that Facebook is a part of life (facebook.com/behindthewillows).

Genres Jessie enjoys; My normal diet consists of large helpings of Historical Fiction, Fantasy and Young Adult novels with a bit of Sci Fi and Adventure on the side followed by a bit of Chick Lit Romance for dessert.  But variety is the spice of life…

Book Formats Jessie prefers for the review team; While I prefer mobi I can make anything work for a good book!

Hobbies, interests, and any pets?  I’m surrounded by animals! The dogs, the cats and the dove all live in the house but I like to keep our orchard full of chickens and ducks! I’m a wife and farmer, photographer and mother, writer and hunter, athlete and gardener, and I’ve always got a book at my side!

Reading Soft edge

 

I asked, “What new genres have you tried from the review team list?”

 I rather accidentally stepped into a bit of horror. Not surprisingly, I found it equally fascinating and horrifying!

 “What genres make you step out of your comfort zone?”

I’m not into the aforementioned horror because I’m a wimp and I really prefer to sleep at night when the lights go out. Not that I won’t indulge occasionally but it’s got to be really worth it!

“What do you look for in a book?”

I’m an equal opportunist. I’ve loved books while hating the characters and loved characters while wishing they were doing something a bit more exciting.  I always love when I get to “accidentally” learn something new while reading an enjoyable book and I’ve a soft spot for witty dialogue.

“Book Styles you don’t enjoy?”

Short stories are hard for me. I want to dive into a novel and wake up days and books down the line. With short stories I love the beautiful dive in but then find myself abruptly smacking my head against the bottom as it ends!

“Do you read & review Non-Fiction?”

Yes! Not a lot of it but if something catches my interest I’m happy to read it and then bore all my friends to death with random facts I’ve learned.