Free eBook Giveaway : The Carnival Keepers by Amber Gulley

Free eBook Giveaway : The Carnival Keepers by Amber Gulley

Free eBook Giveaway : The Carnival Keepers

by Amber Gulley

Giving away:

  • 20 eBook(s) for reviews (ended)
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– ended

Genre:

Fantasy, Action and Adventure, Horror

Blurb:

It’s 1879, and James, a time-wasting escapist, is trying to win a bet. His challenges include purchasing a lighthouse, hosting a séance, and spending the night with his father’s prize-winning stallion in a notoriously haunted attic. But the Carnival is in town for the All Hallows’ Eve celebrations, and the London fog has other ideas for James. Something vicious is waiting to pounce and lead him unwittingly towards a destiny he could never have imagined.

Message from the author:

To celebrate the May release of The Carnival Keepers’ sequel: Murder At The Scrambling Dragon, I am giving away 20 copies of The Carnival Keepers!

 

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Book Review : Murder in Paint by Rodney Strong

Book Review : Murder in Paint by Rodney Strong

by gobbler 1 Comment

Book Review – Murder in Paint

by Rodney Strong

Average rating (all reviews) :

 

3 Blogger Reviews

Dianne James Book Blogger
 Joni Dee
Thriller Author
Brittany Hood
BookGobbler Top Reviewer
 Dianne James 
Blogger & Reader

 


 

Book Review by Joni Dee User Sign Up

Thoroughly Enjoyable Art-Elemented Thriller!

Murder in Paint is the second novel by Rodney Strong, who’s a Wellington, NZ based author. I’ve read Rodney’s debut “Troy’s Possibilities” which was an unorthodox fiction novel, and stood first in line to read “Murder in Paint”, which is Strong’s attempt of a thriller. I was not disappointed.

As a thriller author myself I always enjoy exploring other sub-genres, with an extra attraction to either political or art, the latter being a rare find. I’ve approached this novel cautiously, as like Strong’s previous novel, there is a dominant element of supernatural, and I’m not normally into such things. In this case, the anti-hero protagonist, Oliver Atkinson, reluctantly “picks up” a “hitchhiker” in the cemetery – a spirit called Violet Tumbleton – who becomes a constant presence in his head. It kind of reminded me of “Defender” by G X Todd, which is a rather unknown newish novel about an apocalyptic world where people get the “gift” of self-aware beings, voices, stuck in their heads.

Urged by the long dead Violet to find the con-woman who “stole” her name, Oliver, is sucked into a whirlpool of art-theft and a murder investigation. Fake Violet, aka Amanda, cons and steals for a living, but after a painting she sold had gone missing, and the art dealer found dead, she is picked up by the police. She then names Oliver, who she randomly met, as her partner. Oliver, who’s a stay-at-home-dad that quit his 9-5 job in pursuit of a career as an author (probably loosely based on Mr Strong, who has done the same) is anything but the cunning partner you’d want on a task like this. With the police breathing done his neck, a hired-thug called Victor who believes Oliver knows where the painting is, Amanda’s shenanigans and Violet in his head, Oliver is forced to take control of his life again.

Let me just start by saying that I thoroughly enjoyed the novel. The supernatural element has completely slipped off my mind, and the interaction between Oliver and Violet seemed so natural that I nearly forgot to mention she’s a spirit of a long-dead woman in my review! Oliver is in the wrong place at the wrong time, and his suburban life is thrown into a mess, which he doesn’t know how to approach, left alone solve. His reliance on a con-artist is both believable and aggravating, I really wanted to shout to the pages “snap out of it mate!”, but it’s also part of his charm. A character I could very well identify with, as it seems like my life has the same kids-induced mess, as his.

Strong’s writing is accurate, without being rigid, the book flows, and I found myself waiting for my work commutes, in order to get on with it. The art plot, as the main drive behind the mystery was great, and Strong has done such a great job making it plausible, that I actually opened Google to search for the artists he mentions, disappointed to find they weren’t real.
If I must point out a flaw, is that the resolution was a bit expected, nor was the climax too nail-biting, however – it was not disappointing. There were also a couple of opportunities where it seemed neither Oliver nor Strong knew how the former will get out of a situation he had gotten himself into, and the latter spared us the dialogue which got him out of it. It wasn’t common but it stuck out. Also, I’d expected a few more questions from Oliver about the afterlife (!) – not necessarily answers.

All in all a great thriller, I really liked it, 4.5 stars is the proper score. Looking forward to the next one, in what appears to be the start of a series.


 

Book Review by Rodney Strong User Sign Up

An unexpected Hitchhiker Leads to a Murder

I read Rodney Strong’s debut novel, Troy’s Possibilities, last year and absolutely loved it! Now Strong is back with his new novel Murder in Paint. I’m a murder mystery gal at heart and I jumped at the chance to read it and see how Strong moved into a new genre.

Oliver is an aspiring writing. He spends his days researching and typing out his new, take-the-world-by-storm novel. Just kidding. . . He spends most of his time doing laundry, cleaning up after his two kids, and making sure he gets them to their various activities somewhat on time. And there’s no time for writing his book.

Oliver has been floating through life as a stay at home husband/dad. But circumstances take an unexpected turn when he picks up a hitchhiker at the cemetery.

Violet Tumbleton has been dead for a long time, but she has now returned. Someone has stolen Violet’s name and she wants it back. There’s only one problem, she’s a voice inside Oliver’s head.

Oliver and Violet team up to find who the fake Violet is. But in their discovery, they become entangled with an art thief, a murder, and there’s still more danger coming.

One of the things I love about Strong’s main characters is that they are so raw. Oliver is absolutely believable and relatable. Everything he does and thinks is what a real person would do. His life isn’t perfect, actually it’s complete chaos with two little cyclones running around. He’s the charming, stay-at-home-husband next door.

I have two elements I do want to address: the murder itself and Oliver’s wife Jennifer. The murder does not take a main role in the story until much later. I honestly forgot there was a murder in the story for a while. Jennifer’s reaction to the whole situation is unbelievable to me. There is a murder on the loose, her family (including two children) is being threatened, and the reaction is very underplayed.

The story itself is quite similar to the Stephanie Plum series: there’s action, bad guys, and enough humor that will keep you chuckling for the rest of the afternoon. It’s a great beach read or a ‘sunny afternoon’ read. And the ending had me bursting out laughing! I can’t wait to see what the next book has in store!

Murder in Paint by Rodney Strong receives 3.5 stars.


The reviewer is a book blogger, originally posted on Britanny’s Pages

Dianne James Book Blogger Reviewed by Dianne James User Sign Up

What a delightfully entertaining book!

Oliver Atkinson has given up his job to write a book, whilst also taking on the role of house husband. His life appears to be full, looking after his two young children and doing the daily chores, but not enough writing is getting done.
After making a family visit to the cemetery to visit his mother’s grave, Oliver inadvertently picks up a spirit. Violet’s spirit needs his help and whilst he first thinks he is perhaps going mad, he eventually accepts her as she unknowingly leads him into a tangled web of art theft and murder, where he becomes involved with a con artist using Violet’s name.

I loved, loved, loved this book even though the supernatural aspect would normally not be my thing. The plot was tangled enough to keep me well interested and the characters wonderfully developed and diverse.

Strong has an easy writing style filled with humour and occasional irreverence, which made me…an Antipodean…feel right at home.
I love a good mystery and this was not in any way a disappointment. The ending was almost totally unexpected and the epilogue made me laugh out loud.
A truly, truly, delightful book you can get your teeth into. Highly recommended. I can’t wait to read Strong’s next one.


Originally posted on “Once Upon a Place” Blog
Dianne is running the book review blog Novel Experiences

 

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free book Giveaway : Do Not Ask by Elaine Williams Crockett

free book Giveaway : Do Not Ask by Elaine Williams Crockett

free book Giveaway : Do Not Ask

by Elaine Williams Crockett

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  • 24 eBook(s) for reviews (ended)
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** U.S. Residents only, sorry for the inconvenience.

Genre:

 thriller

Blurb:

The President’s beautiful twin daughters disappear during a visit to a mysterious country estate known as Blackhall … a United States Supreme Court law clerk vanishes from her Georgetown apartment. Why are all these Washington, DC, women disappearing?

Supreme Court Justice Warren Alexander is determined to find out when he discovers a link between the missing women and his son-in-law, a notorious playboy and the owner of Blackhall. And when the President’s daughters are found dead on the Blackhall estate, and the DNA is a one-in-a-trillion match, the FBI is certain the right person is locked up.

But the killing isn’t over. While Justice Alexander desperately tries to exonerate an innocent man, the killer is targeting yet another woman. Alexander soon discovers that Blackhall is an estate with a secret. A centuries-old murder must be solved before the killer can ever be found. Before Alexander’s daughter is the next to die.

Author’s Message:

Thanks for agreeing to review my book. Please note, it contains mature content.

 

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Free eBook Giveaway : The Amnesiac and Other Stories by Christopher Walker

Free eBook Giveaway : The Amnesiac and Other Stories by Christopher Walker

Free eBook Giveaway : The Amnesiac and Other Stories

by Christopher Walker

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  • 20 eBook(s) for reviews (1 given, 19 remaining)
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– ends 5th July 2018

Genre:

Fantasy, Science fiction

Blurb:

‘The Amnesiac and Other Stories’ is a collection of thirteen stories, covering genres from literary fiction to fantasy by way of science-fiction and a touch of horror. For example, in the titular story a young man wakes from an accident and is haunted by nightmares he cannot escape; in ‘Freud in Cardiff’ the famous psychoanalyst moves to Wales, wreaking havoc on the locals; and in ‘The Chameleon’s Blush’ a superhero discovers that there are greater foes to fight than arch-nemeses.

Message from the author:

Hello all! ‘The Amnesiac and Other Stories’ is my third book of fiction, and my second collection of short stories. I’m hoping there’s something here for everyone, though as they say it’s impossible to please all of the people all of the time. I’m still something of a novice writer, which is why I’m giving this book away – right now, honest feedback from people who love books is far more important to me than sales. If you have time, please read this collection and let me know on Amazon if you think it’s any good. Hate it? Then give me a one-star review – but most crucially, offer your thoughts so that I can continue to improve. Thank you one and all!

 

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free book Giveaway : Murder in Paint  by Rodney Strong

free book Giveaway : Murder in Paint by Rodney Strong

free book Giveaway : Murder in Paint

by Rodney Strong

Giving away:

 

 

  • 10 eBook(s) for reviews (ended)
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ended

Genre:

 thriller

Blurb:

How do you get rid of a hitchhiker when it’s riding around in your head?

Oliver Atkinson’s life is busy enough. He’s already got his hands full trying to write a book, look after the kids, do the housework, and ignore Amanda, the beautiful con artist that keeps trying to drag him into her world of stolen paintings. The last thing he needs is the disgruntled spirit of a twenty something old watching and commentating on his life.

It’s not been a regular week, but one thing has become painfully clear to Oliver. No one is going anywhere until they get what they want. He has to step outside his comfort zone and deal with liars, thieves, thugs, and little old ladies. Not to mention the determined detective and a possible murderer.

Can he do all this and be done in time to do the school pick up?

If you like your mysteries with humor and a little supernatural element, then you’ll love the new Hitchhiker series, by New Zealand author Rodney Strong.

Author’s Message:

Hi everyone, I hope you enjoy the first book in my exciting new series of cozy murder mysteries.
Thanks for taking the time to read and review it.

 

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Book Review – Veiled by Cyana Gaffney

Book Review – Veiled by Cyana Gaffney

Book Review – Veiled

by Cyana Gaffney

Average rating (all reviews) :

 

1 Bloggers Review

Dianne James Book Blogger
Julia Wilson
Christian Bookaholic
 Dianne James 
Blogger & Reader 

 


Reviewed by Julia Wilson User Sign Up

You Go Before Me

Veiled by Cyana Gaffney is an absolutely cracking contemporary Christian suspense that draws the reader in from the start.

The opening immediately presents the reader with questions. “If only she could go back and make different choices.” I was hooked. What different choices were needed? What had she done?

The novel is cleverly constructed with the timeline fluctuating and the character focus changing. I clung on to the action with trepidation and anticipation. The ending was brilliant and has set me up for book two. Let me assure readers though, the ending did wrap up my questions but whetted my appetite for what is to come.

Guilt weighs us down. Consequences of actions have far reaching effects. “She lost herself that day… and God whom she had not spoken to since.” Life will either draw us towards God or push Him away. “I just don’t believe anymore.” If we are wise, we will cling to God.

Though we may move from God, He is faithful to us, awaiting our return. His silence has nothing to do with Him not speaking and everything to do with us not listening. We need to draw near to God and hear His whisper.

The novel is mainly set in Saudi. Here the customs and way of life is very different. There were some hard to read (but realistic) scenes due to corruption and cruelty. Trust is the focus of the novel. People let us down. Regimes cannot be trusted. God is faithful. If we put our trust in Him, our feet will always have a firm foundation no matter what life throws at us.

Veiled was a powerful if disturbing novel. It was realistic and opened my eyes to the plight of women. It was an incredible story that tugged at my heart and played with my emotions. I can highly recommend it.

I received this book for free from The Book Gobbler. A favourable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.


Originaly Posted on the Christian Bookaholic

 

Dianne James Book Blogger Reviewed by Dianne James User Sign Up

A story of pain & fear; capitulation & inner strength;  love & rediscovery of faith

“Veiled” is the story of a young woman’s trip to Saudi Arabia, which goes to hell in a hand basket from the moment she lands. Hailey is arrested by the religious police when she lands in Riyadh and is taken on a journey of horror and fear from that moment on. No spoilers here though.

I stepped out of my comfort zone in reading this Christian Inspirational novel, but I was seduced by the blurb and I was not disappointed at all. This is an excellent suspense novel, filled with emotion and fear, and takes you on a journey that will both amaze and horrify you.

I really enjoyed this book. At first I wasn’t overly enamoured with the main character, but as she gained inner strength and determination, it was hard not to be right there with her. Your pulse will race as the suspense builds…over and over.

It is a story of pain and fear of the unknown; of capitulation and inner strength, but it is also a story of love of humanity, and rediscovery of faith.

Though this book may horrify many readers as they uncover this very different culture, the story is told with a good measure of sensitivity and understanding. The suspense is palpable and the outcome not really certain until the end where it leaves you on a cliffhanger.

Will I read the next book? You betcha!


Originally posted on “Once Upon a Place” Blog
Dianne is running the book review blog Novel Experiences

 

 

 
Free eBook Giveaway : The Sky Drifter by Paris Singer

Free eBook Giveaway : The Sky Drifter by Paris Singer

Free eBook Giveaway : The Sky Drifter

by Paris Singer

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ENDED 

Genre:

Action and Adventure, Fantasy, Science fiction, YA

Blurb:

Something is very wrong aboard the Sky Drifter…

Seven is a brilliant student, gifted in strategy and the sport of Sphere. Wandering the vastness of space, his home is the Sky Drifter: an academy for the best students in the known universe. With his friends, Iris and Pi, Seven takes on rivals and visits planets for exploration and competition.

Everything is the way Seven likes it, until he sees a mysterious girl in a red coat who will reveal a dark secret that will bring everything he thought he knew crashing down around him.

Will Seven be able to escape the Sky Drifter?

Message from the author:

Dear, reader;  Thank you for your interest in The Sky Drifter, which I hope you’ll enjoy. Feel free to visit the Paris Singer website for more information on the various species within the novel. You can also join the mailing list, where you will be sent a copy of The Sky Drifter 2 pre-publication when it’s finished and ready, as well as the occasional competition, concept art, etc.

 

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Book Review – Mind Games by Stevie Turner

Book Review – Mind Games by Stevie Turner

Book Review – Mind Games 

by Stevie Turner

Average rating (all reviews) :

 

2 Bloggers’ Reviews

 

Dale E. Lehman 
BookGobbler Author
 Cherie McKay Horst 
Book Blogger

 


 

Reviewed by Dale E. Lehman User Sign Up

An Emotionally-Charged Addiction Tale

Frances and Martin Andrews have a serious problem: he’s addicted to pornography, and she’s addicted to spying on him to secure evidence of his transgressions. The lack of trust between them has shattered their marriage, and even counseling doesn’t offer much hope. Martin’s repeated lies render impotent his protestations that he’s changed. He desperately wants her back, but she desperately wants to be free of him.

That’s the set-up. What follows in this fast-paced and relatively short novel spans a few emotionally-charged years in which husband and wife must face their own flaws as well as each other’s. It’s a compelling read about a life-destroying indulgence that has ensnared all too many people, particularly in the Internet age. Turner does a creditable job of portraying the addiction and its effects, although I suspect she’s captured the wife’s trauma better than the husband’s. Frances grows considerably through the story, while Martin’s journey through hell ultimately seems fruitless. I’ll grant that’s one plausible outcome, but I found it disheartening. Maybe that’s the point? I at least would have liked a bit deeper glimpse into Martin’s psyche at the end to understand better how he ends up where he does.

The writing is good enough, although I thought phrases containing the word “porn” occurred a bit too often, and some of the dialogue, particularly with the counselor, seemed a bit stilted. (However, I’ve never been in a counseling session, so maybe that’s how it really is.) I also think the author missed some opportunities to delve deeper into the characters through the action. This is a complex situation that could easily support another 50 pages of development without feeling stretched.

A word of caution: Although this work is neither romance nor erotica, there are a few explicit passages, not excessively graphic but very direct.

The strengths and weaknesses of “Mind Games” had me hemming and hawing over a rating. I’ve settled on 4.5 stars for story and a bit better than 3.5 for the writing, yielding 4 stars overall.


The Reviewer is the Author of “The Fibonacci Murders” ,”True Death” and “Ice on the Bay

This review will feature in his blog www.DaleELehman.com

 

Reviewed by Cherie McKay Horst User Sign Up

The Author Did a Very Good Job

“Mind Games” is the story of the life of Frances and Martin Andrews.  Their story is one of a marriage that has been destroyed by Martin’s addiction to porn and the loss of trust that comes from addiction.

The story is told from both Frances and Martin’s perspectives. Throughout the story you begin to see life through the eyes of Frances, with occasional views through Martin’s eyes.  The character of Frances really grows throughout the tale, and I found myself really rooting for her.

It is a fast moving story, and I found myself making my way through the book in a short time.  Although the story is about porn addiction, it is not an erotic or sensual book in anyway.  At times the book is hard to read simply because porn addiction is a tough subject to read about. But the story line is interesting, and I wanted to know the outcome of their marriage and where life takes them.

I think the author did a very good job telling an interesting, fast moving story about a very complex, yet believable situation.

 


The Reviewer runs “From Michigan to Germany” blog


 


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Book Review – A NECESSARY END by Diana Rubino

Book Review – A NECESSARY END by Diana Rubino

Book Review –

A NECESSARY END, The Act of a Desperate Rebel

by Diana Rubino

Average rating (all reviews) :

 

 

Rodney Strong
Fiction Author
 

 


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An Entertaining, if Slightly too Long, Book.  Would Look for Other Work by Ms. Rubino

“A Necessary End” re-imagines the events leading up to the assassination of Abraham Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth, told from the assassins point of view.  Throw in some supernatural elements and great attention to detail of living during those times and you get an entertaining, if slightly too long, book.

The author has obviously done her homework when it comes to creating an authentic world.  The detail is superb and the readers get a  clear sense of the conflict between the Confederate and Union sides of the civil war.  John Wilkes Booth is both a compassionate, and ruthless man who is driven to take action against an unjust president who breaks a promise to spare the life of a friend.  Over the course of the book he forms conspiracies, even while there are those that conspire against him.  At the same time he is haunted by a spirit, and this increasingly directs his actions.

This is a long book, and at times I felt frustrated at all the sub plots and, how all the female characters swooned over Booth.  It became a little repetitive, especially as the book progressed.  It felt like twenty pages could have been knocked off the total and we still would have had the essential story and characters.

It’s these little frustrations that stopped me from getting completely immersed in the book, and therefore giving it a 5 star rating.

Having said that, I was overall entertained by the book, and would look for other work by the same author.


The Reviewer is the Author of “Troy’s Possibilities” and “Murder in Paint”

 
Book Review – Oney, My Escape From Slavery by Diana Rubino and Piper Huguley

Book Review – Oney, My Escape From Slavery by Diana Rubino and Piper Huguley

Book Review – Oney, My Escape From Slavery

by Diana Rubino and Piper Huguley

Average rating (all reviews) :

 

1 Bloggers Review

Julia Wilson
Christian Bookaholic

 


Reviewed by Julia Wilson User Sign Up

All Man Are Frec

Oney: My Escape From Slavery by Diana Rubino and Piper Huguley is an epic historical novel that blends fact and fiction into a marvellous tale.

At its heart is the question of slavery. It is appalling to the modern reader that this vile trade ever existed. Slaves were not seen as people but commodities. Some were treated well, others not but a palace is as much of a prison as a shack if you are not free.

Oney was a forward thinking young woman who wanted not only her freedom. “I’ve had enough of bein’ property. I wanna own my own body.” She wanted an education too. She was a very brave young woman. The novel surrounds the plight of women. Even those who thought they were free, were actually subject to the will of their husbands.

There is a tentative bond between Oney and her mistress. She was treated kindly but still seen as a possession to be given away on a whim.
Religion is mentioned. There are some who want religion and the state separate, others who want them tied together. The African Free Church plays a part in Oney’s life. She also observes her mistress “prayed whenever she wanted a favor from God, but I never heard her thank Him afterward.”

The novel is a comprehensive account of life in the 1790’s. The reader hears about the War Of Independence – ironically not all men were free – and the French Revolution. The reader is party to parlour gossip.

Oney is brave, gutsy and likable. The reader cheers her on, urging her towards freedom. I liked her.
A powerful emotional read surrounding an abhorrent practice.

To all those brave men, women and children. “Slavery took our bodies but they can’t take our souls.”

I received this book for free from the Book Gobbler. A favourable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.


Originaly Posted on the Christian Bookaholic