THE ALCHEMICAL DETECTIVE by @KirstenWeiss #Paranormal #Romantic #Mystery #TuesdayBookBlog

The Alchemical Detective (Riga Hayworth, #2)The Alchemical Detective by Kirsten Weiss
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Alchemical Detective is book #2 in the Riga Hayworth paranormal romance mysteries. The book is easily a stand alone read.

Metaphysical detective Riga Hayworth has come to Lake Tahoe for some rest and relaxation as she works on regaining her lost magical abilities (from book #1, but it didn’t matter that I hadn’t read it). Urged to consider alchemy by a French stone gargoyle, Riga finds her studies disrupted by a reality TV show offer; to investigate into tales that the lake is home to Tessie, an unknown monster.

Peace and quiet is also shattered when a local palm reader is found murdered. Riga finds herself “a person of interest” to the police and suddenly she’s asked not to leave town. Her own investigations lead her to daemon involvement in the murder and as the body count rises Riga considers the Tessie project might well be linked to the murders.

I loved the paranormal aspects of the book, they were explained well and I didn’t feel lost, the magic was very believable. I also liked the ghosts who were part of the story, I’m a big fan of interactive ghosts. Riga was an easily relatable character, I like her sassy independence and no-nonsense attitude. Lots of suitable lose ends to leave the reader thinking and it has me running to Amazon looking up the next book in the series.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Book Description

Where Alchemy, Demons, and Good Wine Collide… with a Lake Monster Named Tessie. A psychic has been murdered in an occult ceremony and the police pay a visit to Riga Hayworth, metaphysical detective. But this time, she’s not a consultant on the case. She’s a suspect.

There’s a storm on the horizon.

Riga’s lost her magic and has come to Lake Tahoe to recover and spend quality time with her new love. But life for Riga is never that simple. A psychic’s been murdered, and the police believe Riga has a connection to the crime.

They’re right.

And if that’s not enough, Riga is drafted as the host of a reality TV show about the local lake monster, and her niece is rejecting her metaphysical abilities. Juggling demons, daimons, and angry tarot card readers, Riga must catch a killer before she becomes the next target.

The Alchemical Detective is an urban fantasy exploring the world of alchemy and the imagination.

About the author

Kirsten Weiss

I worked overseas for nearly twenty years in the fringes of the former USSR, Africa, and deep in the Afghan war zone.  My experiences abroad not only gave me glimpses into the darkness and light of human nature, but also sparked an interest in the effects of mysticism and mythology, and how both are woven into our daily lives.

 Now based in San Mateo, CA, I write genre-blending novels: urban fantasy/mystery, steampunk/suspense, and cozy mysteries with a touch of paranormal. The mix just makes things more fun!

 I believe that life is as magical as you want to make it. I’ve never met a dessert I didn’t like, and my guilty pleasures are watching Ghost Whisperer reruns and drinking red wine.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter | Website get a free copy fo this book when you sign up to Kirsten’s newsletter

Advertisements

INTO THE SHADOWS by @MarieJones14057 Irish #Romance #SundayBlogShare

Into The Shadows *** NUMBER 1 BOOK ***Into The Shadows *** NUMBER 1 BOOK *** by Marie Jones
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Into The Shadows is a romance set in Dingle, Ireland. Lily Crossways recently found a ghostly figure in the background of a beach photo she’d taken whilst on holiday. Lily swore the beach was empty when she took the photo, yet Lily is convinced the woman needs her help.

The draw to return to Dingle is so strong that Lily sets out for Ireland once more. She begins showing around her photo and finds she opens a Pandora’s box of suppressed memories.

David’s sister has been missing for several years, searches have been fruitless, but when Lily shows him the photo, he can’t believe his eyes. At first he thinks it is a hoax, but Lily wins him round and they begin a new search. Their digging also opens old wounds which link Lily’s family to Dingle and more than one person needs to face their past before they can move forward.

This is a light easy read in a lovely setting and the paranormal thread was an interesting storyline, I wasn’t quite convinced with Lily’s character leaping from a shy introvert type to a strong adventurous leader and all round heroine, perhaps she just hadn’t found her passion in life and Dingle was meant to be her true life path? Recommended for lovers of Irish themed romances.

View all my reviews Goodreads

Book Description

Arriving home from a short holiday in Dingle, Lily Crossways makes a staggering discovery – on one of her photos taken on ‘Inch’ beach, a woman’s desperate face is staring directly at her. Yet Lily knows she was alone that day on the beach. 
Who is she, is she even real, and why has she appeared to Lily? 
Unable to let the woman go, Lily makes the uncharacteristic decision to leave behind her safe world in England and return to Dingle to try and find her. Her search eventually leads her to cafe owner David Carson, this woman’s brother, who hasn’t seen his ‘missing’ sister in five years. 
Lily must now convince him to trust in her, taking bold steps to prove herself to him, and together track down his sister before it’s too late. 
Yet are either prepared for the hidden secrets they are about to uncover in their earnest desire to find her, and the impact it will have on those they love? 

About the author

where I loved nothing more than writing stories into my special A4 lined exercise book.

I remember my English teacher reading out one of my stories to the whole class and encouraging me to keep writing.  Later in life, I went on to study creative writing at evening class.

My favourite place to write is in my lounge when the house is quiet and my kids are out (though have learnt to write around noise!).

I have always been an avid reader from the first moment I could read, and some of my favourite authors are Kate Moreton, Santa Montefiore, Philippa Gregory, and Nicholas Sparks to name a few. Any book that grips me, will always pull me in.

Around writing and family life, I also work part time as a Teaching Assistant at a local primary school, every day encouraging the budding talent of our future writers.

I’m married, and we have two gorgeous children. I’m loving being in my 40s and highly recommend it!

My other passions include photography, travelling and pencil drawing. I ran my own photography business for a few years and had my photos exhibited.

I’ve been fortunate enough to visit many countries around the world, yet Ireland still remains one of my all time favourite countries. What an amazing world, full of God’s beauty and creation, we live in…

Whether I am writing stories, photographing or drawing, everyday men and women with all their amazing complexities will always fascinate and inspire me.

AmazonUk | AmazonUS | Goodreads | Twitter

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT BLOOD OF THE SIXTH by @KRRowe #Paranormal #Horror #wwwblogs

Today’s Team Review is from Teri, she blogs at http://teripolen.com/

#RBRT Review Team

Teri has been reading Blood Of The Sixth by K.R Rowe

32507993

In the quaint Southern town of Port Bella Rosa, something sinister lurks beneath the cobblestones. When hunger stirs a centuries-old evil, a demon awakens, releasing its hunters in search of prey. Jackals swarm from the mist, seeking out quarry, sating their master with offerings of human flesh.

Allie Kent catches a glimpse of the first victim: a corpse with its organs, muscle and bone all consumed, leaving nothing more than skin behind. While police work to solve the unexplained murder, more bodies are found mutilated. Finally convinced the killer isn’t human, Detective Phillip Chambers is desperate to shield Allie from harm.

But something haunts Allie: shadows spill through her darkened window; nightmares invade her sleep while visions confuse her waking thoughts. With Phillip her only protection, Allie struggles to keep her independence in check while treading a thin line between reality and insanity. But is the evil dwelling beneath the stones her only true threat—or will the demons in Allie’s head have the strength to destroy them both? – Goodreads.com

I’ve been a horror fan since third grade when I read my first ‘age appropriate’ horror book – then moved on to Stephen King and others soon after, craving more than the ‘appropriate’ books could provide.  Blood of the Sixth is most definitely a horror novel with some cringe-worthy moments – but if you’re not a fan of the genre, don’t let that keep you from giving this a try, because there’s also a sweet romance between some intriguing characters.

Whether it’s an eerie, haunting scene guaranteed to cause goosebumps or the deep, gut-wrenching pull of first love, this author is phenomenal at descriptive writing.  The senses are engaged and the writing flows effortlessly, immersing the reader into a well-paced story – which caused me to lose track of time more than once.

One of the biggest reasons this story is so captivating is the characters – you can’t help but love Allie’s quirkiness and be sympathetic to her horrific past.  Phillip is all business as a detective, but shows a softer side when he feels an attraction to Allie almost immediately when they meet and charms his way into her life.  Maybe Allie is more open to the possibility of the supernatural because of her past, but Phillip needs convincing and soon witnesses some terrifying events that can only explained by paranormal means.

Blood of the Sixth is a spine-chilling read and one I’d highly recommend to horror/paranormal thriller fans.

I received a copy of this book through Rosie’s Book Review Team in exchange for an honest review.

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

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT WHEN DARKNESS FALLS by @ChauvetEllen #Paranormal #Romance

Today’s Team review is from Judith W, she blogs at https://readandreview2016.wordpress.com/

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Judith has been reading When Darkness Falls by Ellen Chauvet

29585481

 

  • Title: When Darkness Falls
  • Published: 2016
  • Author: Ellen Chauvet

 

  • Started: Sunday 7th August 2016
  • Finished: Friday 12th August 2016

When Darkness Falls follows Lexi Miles, an American woman living a glamorous lifestyle with her friend Emma in Paris, France. When Emma is horrifically attacked and murdered by vampires, and Lexis’s world is turned upside down as she makes numerous shocking revelations. She meets Etienne, an enigmatic vampire she can’t help but fall in love with. However, betrayal leads her to seek revenge.

When Darkness Falls was definitely an interesting, but short, read for me.

I liked the use of vampire iconography, like vervain and compulsion, elements of vampire tales first introduced to me through The CW’s The Vampire Diaries TV show, the adaptation of the books of the same name by L. J. Smith, which I’m really enjoying.

The frequent use of violence and bloodshed felt genuinely horrific and dark, making the “bad” vampires seem truly monstrous. However, I thought the logic behind the “good” vampires’ ability to resist human blood (by taking an anti-serum) didn’t seem wholly convincing.

I also thought the story was reminiscent of the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer, but despite the similarities between the two stories, I found nothing wrong with Chauvet’s narrative, and it was an enjoyable vampire storyline.

However, When Darkness Falls is not just a vampire story, it is an erotic vampire story, and that was my main issue.

Furthermore, I understood the link Chauvet created between the feelings of lust and vampire “bloodlust” –connotations of uncontrollable urges, which even traditional Gothic stories included – and I thought this was cleverly done. However, Chauvet takes these connotations and turns them into sex scenes, which just didn’t add anything to the plot, and the explicit sexual language genuinely shocked me.

Excluding the sex scenes, I thought When Darkness Falls was an enjoyable and interesting book (and still a better love story than Twilight!)

Star Rating: 3/5 Stars

When Darkness Falls is available to buy as an e-book or paperback from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com.

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT THE HAUNTING OF HIGHDOWN HALL by @shani_struthers

Today’s team review is from Cathy, she blogs at http://betweenthelinesbookblog.com

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Cathy has been reading The Haunting of Highdown Hall by Shani Struthers

21870817

In the late 1950s Cynthia Hart was a beautiful and sought after, if egotistical, movie star about to secure her place on the world’s stage. It was Christmas Eve 1958 and Cynthia was hosting a lavish ball at her country house, celebrating her thirty-first birthday. Little did she know it was to be her last.

Fast forward to present day where we meet Ruby Davis and her team of freelance psychics, Corinna, Theo and Ness, who help earthbound spirits enter the light. Ruby believes wholeheartedly that the power of love helps reluctant or confused spirits on their way. Psychic Surveys is just beginning to make a name for itself, their reputation growing, when Theo goes to survey Highdown Hall, a house in Sussex which used to belong to a famous film star. This case will challenge Ruby’s long held beliefs regarding good versus evil. The Psychic Survey team, along with Ruby’s developing love interest, Cash, and a Jed, a spirit dog, take on a lot more than they bargained for with the haunted Highdown Hall.

This is an enjoyable, easy read. I liked the story and subject matter and, although it’s a little lightweight for me, I was warned this is more paranormal suspense than horror. I believe the following stories get progressively darker so I’ll definitely move on to book two. The only complaint I have is that the narrative felt too long drawn out with unnecessary details in places and more telling than showing initially and so, for me, could do with a little tightening up. Other than that, the writing is good and the story well paced.

The characters are convincing and likeable. Ruby is a warm, compassionate person, dedicated to helping grounded spirits to move on. The plot surrounding Cynthia and why she can’t leave her bedroom is interesting and, as the truth is gradually uncovered, there’s a great twist at the end. There’s also a mystery surrounding Ruby’s mother which hopefully will be revealed in the next book.

Shani Struthers’ concept of what happens after death is a lovely thought, fascinating in it’s straightforwardness, although it seems for some the transition could be more complicated and scary.

I did notice there’s a prequel entitled Eve, which I wanted to read before I wrote my review, and enjoyed very much. It’s a good introduction to Theo and Ness, how they started working together and eventually had the germ of an idea which develops into Psychic Surveys. This story is a little darker, set at Christmas time and encompasses a heart breaking tragedy. Well worth starting with.

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

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT GIVE IN TO THE FEELING by Sarah Zama #HistFic @JazzFeathers

Today’s Team Review is from Terry, she blogs at http://terrytylerbookreviews.blogspot.co.uk/

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Terry has been reading Give In To The Feeling by Sarah Zama

28799901

Give in to the Feeling by Sarah Zama

3.5 stars

This is an interesting and unusual novella, set in 1920s Chicago, mostly within a speakeasy. Susie (really Su Xie) is a Chinese girl who has been sent to America by her parents (all is explained) and ends up living with ‘Simon’, the owner of the speakeasy and a gangster (this is implied, rather than stated). She dances for him and his customers each night; she belongs to him. Then one night she dances with the mysterious Blood, and knows that he is the person she must be with.

The atmosphere is well set, the emotions most convincing, and I liked the rather offbeat way in which it’s written. I noticed that the author is Italian; sometimes the English is not quite right, with strange word choices or slightly incorrect ways of expressing things, but, oddly, it works well with the style of the story and subject matter. I think it actually adds to it, peculiar though that may sound. The story has a strong supernatural element, as not everyone in it is one hundred per cent human.

After about half way through I began to find it a tiny bit repetitive where the feelings of the characters were concerned, and I think I preferred the earlier parts where the supernatural side was hinted at, rather than made obvious. But I enjoyed reading it, and there’s an interesting addition in the back: a chapter from the first person point of view of Susie, about how she felt when she was forced to leave China. There is also some information about speakeasies.

I think lovers of the supernatural would like it very much.

Find a copy via Goodreads

TOUCHED by @abbeymacmunn #Paranormal #Romance @Tirgearr #BookReview

TouchedTouched by Abbey MacMunn
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Two point five star rating.

Touched is a romance with a paranormal theme. It ticks all the boxes of a perfect romance; boy meets girl, love at first sight, reason for them not to be together, inevitable lusting after each other, hot sex and a happy ever after ending. Light easy reading for those who know what they want from this style of romance.

The paranormal theme gives you Cami Wilson, rescued from a car bomb by a devastatingly good looking Joseph Carlisle, who turns out to be an Immortal guardian, assigned to keep her safe from “The Faction”, add in a fun witch, a crazy cat and a couple of baddies and the story ticks along at a reasonable pace.

However I was desperate for this book to take on it’s own voice and be original to make it memorable. It’s a bit light and fluffy like an effervescing chick-lit book. There were far too many eye-rolling moments which have been written a thousand times – eyes that the boy / girl can’t resist, insta-love, sex in the kitchen etc There is very little depth to any of the main paranormal storyline, leaving huge questions about why the boys are immortal, why they were chosen as Cami’s guardians, who chose them, why is the book set where it is, why do The Faction want Cami? Who are they? Who are they Elders? etc To take this book to the next level I yearned for deeper explanations.

I thought the dialogue needed more work too, all the main characters use upbeat, light casual language over-using f-bombs or Mate or hun in an attempt to differentiate them, whereas they all sounded the same to my reading ear, the opportunity to use the paranormal theme to create wonderful individual characters was lost. To the extent that at times I questioned if the book was meant to be a tongue-in-cheek comedy.

There are an overuse of cliché’s and name dropping of products, places, films, music and musicians, these have all been created by someone else and make little use of the “author voice”. Every person and element needs a purpose for it to be in the book to move the story forward. For instance why was a Tic Tac any more relevant than someone popping a fresh breath mint, or just a mint. Most readers know what a mint tastes like but others don’t know what a Tic Tac is.

Both the romance, paranormal and chick-lit genres are heavily saturated and highly competitive, this might be the perfect read for some, just not for me.

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

View all my reviews on Goodreads

YEA THOUGH I WALK BY @J_P_Sloan @CuriosityQuills #Paranormal #Western #Bookreview

Yea Though I WalkYea Though I Walk by J.P. Sloan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Yea Though I walk is a paranormal western set in Wyoming in 1876. It opens with a scene where a man’s foot is roasting on an open fire and later eaten by human cannibals known as Wendigos

Linthicum Odell is a member of the Godpistols a group using religion as a rule of thumb to rid the country of evil. Escaping from the super human cannibals during an attack by blood drinking stiggers, Odell is rescued by Denton Folger, a local newspaperman.

Denton lives near Gold Vein with Katherina, a strange women who sleeps during the day. In return for his rescue Odell agrees to help Denton rid the town of Lars Richterman the local town thug and leader who is forcing people off their land for his own grand scheme.

The last third of the book becomes extremely complex as the triangle around Denton, Odell and Lars closes in and their fight with the Wendigo draws to a climax. Here the writer shows his aptitude to stretch the limits of the reader. I often found it quite hard to know who was talking, but I cannot reveal more without dropping in huge plot spoilers. An interesting story concept, I enjoyed the setting and the buildup but got lost on the way to the end.

This review is based on a copy given to me by Curiosity Quills

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

View all my reviews on Goodreads

THE UNQUIET DEAD by @ChrisDubecki @CuriosityQuills #Paranormal #BookReview

The Unquiet DeadThe Unquiet Dead by Chris Dubecki
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Rating 3.5 stars.
The Unquiet Dead is a paranormal tale set in Toronto, Canada. Nineteen year old Tyler Dufresne is a Necromancer. At a funeral he is drawn to a mausoleum with an eerie statue which emits a fearful energy. Sharing his experience with his friends he is persuaded to visit an occult shop where Martin and his partner Thomas might be able to teach Tyler to use his own powers effectively.

Research finds that Father Yeung knows more about the evil bound in the mausoleum and its links with a past mass suicide pact. Someone is trying to release the bound spirit and Tyler and his friends must put a stop to it all.

There is a big cast of supernaturals in this book; Necromancers, eidolon, were-folk, sorcerers, psychics, ghosts and more for lovers of the paranormal theme. The story-line has great potential, I felt it needed more building of layers and depth of characters, characteristics and action scenes. This would have made each person more memorable and their purpose in the book more believable. Some of the dialogue didn’t feel right, Police officer Mark Hennessey’s use of the F-bombs when talking to an almost complete stranger just wasn’t professional enough. There is also a time and place for f-bombs and generally over using them in writing robs an author of opportunities to show the reader his or her skills as a writer.

A good first attempt at a paranormal tale, it just needs more work to compete in this very competitive genre.

This review is based on a free copy of the book given to me via Curiosity Quills

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

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT WHAT HAUNTS ME by Margaret Millmore @MMillmore #Thriller

Today’s Team review is from Shelley, she blogs at http://shelleywilsonauthor.com/

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Shelley has been reading What Haunts Me by Margaret Millmore

28228250

Author: Margaret Millmore

Category: Paranormal

My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Review:

George recovers from the flu but finds that he is now able to see the ghosts that haunt people and make them ill. He discovers that he has a skill for killing these creatures and healing the sick person that was being haunted. He is aptly called the ghost killer. As the book progresses, we unearth that this skill has been present since George was a child but he had repressed the memories – until now.

I love the hook in the opening paragraph of this book – ‘Have you ever had one of those dreams that haunted you in your waking hours? Those surreal movies of the subconscious, playing out in your head while you sleep, so detailed and vivid that when you woke, you couldn’t be sure if it was just a dream or a long lost memory…’

The idea of a ghost killer who can harm (and be harmed) by ghostly apparitions is promising, unfortunately, for me, What Haunts Me fell a bit flat after that opening page. I couldn’t connect to George at all and was only able to see him as dull and boring. I did like Billy as her character was fun and feisty.

The story is told from George’s point of view and reads like a diary at times which made it difficult for me to bond with the character. I felt there were far too many sentences starting with ‘I’ -I told him/I couldn’t tell/I rounded/I had six weeks.

For the first eight chapters, there were only four lines of dialogue and this huge bulk of prose caused me to struggle when reading. I kept putting it down and turning to something else. It would benefit the novel greatly, and help move the story forward if the characters spoke. There are numerous situations where dialogue would have built a clearer picture of George, but a lengthy paragraph was used instead, for example; ‘That’s why I wasn’t surprised when my boss called me into his office. He went straight to the point…what was wrong with me? Knowing that the real answer wasn’t appropriate, I told him I had personal issues…’

Great idea for a story as I love paranormal books but What Haunts Me wasn’t the engaging read I had hoped it would be. Far too much telling rather showing.

I received a copy of this book as part of Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team in exchange for an honest review.

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