Book Features, Book Reviews, Giveaways

Book Review & Spotlight: Forbidden by Adrienne Woods

Forbidden: A Red Riding Hood Retelling

by Adrienne Woods

Genre: Paranormal Fantasy Romance

This is not The Little Red Riding Hood we grew up with. 



Supernatural races—vampires, werewolves, witches, you name it—all exist.

Eighteen-year-old Rue Chaperon and her family belong to an elite hunting society, the S.H.A—Supernatural Hunting Association—and what the Chaperons hunt best are werewolves.
 When a new hunting group convinces the Chaperons to team up with them and try a different approach to hunting the supernatural by taking out the Alpha, it sounded like a great idea.
Taking out the Alpha meant they’d eradicate the entire race.
Piece of cake, right?

But nothing is ever easy when you’re a hunter.


A Little Red Riding Hood retelling with a spin that will make you believe not all fairytales were meant for children.

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Forbidden is a paranormal romance based off the red riding hood fairytale. Ru and her family are hunters and have been hunting werewolves. Hunting them believing they are killing humans. A new group of hunters lead by a guy named Collin, approach Ru’s family wanting them to join forces. Collin and his crew have a hidden agenda and Ru’s family has some secrets of their own. Ru is just not aware of these secrets yet.

I like this author’s take on the Little Red Riding Hood fairytale. The essential parts of the fairytale like the red cloak and there being a wolf is true to the story, only Ru’s not going to grandma’s house in this one. The reveals were timed perfectly and the dynamics between Ru and her sister, Liz, brought the much needed tension to the story. The love interest and hint of romance was not over the top and complemented the storyline. The ending has me wanting more. This book is perfect for lovers of fairytales and paranormal fantasy stories.

I will definitely read more from this author.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Adrienne is a USA Today Bestselling author.

She’s been in love with books all her life and knew at the age of 13 that she is going to be a writer one day.

That dream happened ten years ago and she started to pen her stories down on paper. Firebolt, her debut novel, was released 4 years after that, and she hasn’t stopped since.

Now she almost has 15 novels under her belt, and it doesn’t look like she is going to stop soon.
Go to her books to discover her series and those that still need to come.

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Book Reviews, Giveaways

Book Review & Spotlight: Casket Case by Lee James

Casket Case

The Cynthia Shade Mysteries Book 1

by Lee James

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Cynthia Shade. That’s her name. She has ADHD and cynophobia. That’s just a fancy way of saying she’s terrified of dogs. Not all dogs mind you, just the tiny ones that come at you with their razor-sharp fangs and frenzied eyes. To make it worse, she can’t find a job, rather, she can’t keep a job, and she’s about to be evicted. Just when she gets a glimmer of hope she’s blackmailed into trying to solve a murder.

Wait-what?

Cue the handsome sheriff who awakens real interest in perpetually single Cynthia, and a cast of crazed suspects. One of whom is determined she doesn’t make it out of this adventure alive.

This was a fun cozy mystery about a broke caterer trying to get her food truck up and running, but stumbles into solving a murder.

I’m a sucker for a good mystery and this was a good one. I enjoyed the characters, and the plot was very interesting. Cynthia’s fear of dogs had me cracking up. The dynamics between her and Sam was the main reason I kept reading the book. The supporting characters helped move the story and I am glad the author didn’t let the spark of romance between Cynthia and the sheriff Arric take over. Sam was an aggressive older lady that was very convincing.

Cynthia’s mother and sister did get on my nerves trying to make her do what they wanted instead of letting her find her own path. I will say at her age she should have found a career a while back.

This was a fast-paced book with small clues, rich characters and the right number of potential suspects. I didn’t figure out the killer until the last few chapters. If you like cozy mysteries with a little bit of humor, then this book is for you. I myself will definitely read more mysteries by this author.

⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

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Lee James writes stories of hope and redemption. Whether it’s fantasy, mystery or historical fiction, her beautifully awkward characters traverse a dark labyrinth on their journey to a hopeful end. She is vehement about the importance of creating and preserving the sanctity of the written word. In that vein, she supports literacy programs and her local libraries. Most importantly, she supports her fellow writers. When not writing, she enjoys photography, watching The Simpsons, and of course, reading.

 

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Book Reviews

Book Review of They Never Learn by Layne Fargo

Title: They Never Learn

Author: Layne Fargo

Genre: Thriller

Publication Date: October 13, 2020

Rating: 4 Stars

Purchase at AMAZON /  BARNES & NOBLE

 

About The Book

Scarlett Clark is an exceptional English professor. But she’s even better at getting away with murder.

Every year, she searches for the worst man at Gorman University and plots his well-deserved demise. Thanks to her meticulous planning, she’s avoided drawing attention to herself—but as she’s preparing for her biggest kill yet, the school starts probing into the growing body count on campus. Determined to keep her enemies close, Scarlett insinuates herself into the investigation and charms the woman in charge, Dr. Mina Pierce. Everything’s going according to her master plan…until she loses control with her latest victim, putting her secret life at risk of exposure.

Meanwhile, Gorman student Carly Schiller is just trying to survive her freshman year. Finally free of her emotionally abusive father, all Carly wants is to focus on her studies and fade into the background. Her new roommate has other ideas. Allison Hadley is cool and confident—everything Carly wishes she could be—and the two girls quickly form an intense friendship. So when Allison is sexually assaulted at a party, Carly becomes obsessed with making the attacker pay…and turning her fantasies about revenge into a reality.

My Thoughts

Scarlett is a English Professor by day and a killer after hours. This makes the story interesting. Is she killing for fun or for a purpose? I figured it’s for a purpose because she picks the worst men on campus to take out. She is an intriguing character.

Carly is a student who seems naive, not confident in her sexuality and is an introvert. Her roommate Allison is more outgoing and is trying to get her out of her comfort zone. While attending a party Allison is raped. Carly’s personality changes after this and a new Carly emerges.

They attend a typical college where the sport teams are everything and are not held responsible. I do believe the killings were spread out too far apart. It is believable to hold a grudge for a long time and want revenge. Kinnear was horrible and deserved to be punished.

I will say I didn’t care for the way the story is set up. You get Scarlett’s chapter which seem to be an older version of Carly. Carly’s chapters are from when she was in college and her friend was raped, but no one paid for it. In the story I could tell Scarlett was getting revenge on a professor from her college days while making guys pay for their wrong doings at Gorman College where she works and had attended school. This in turn made me believe she was also Carly.

For me this would have been better if Scarlett told the story and then revealed toward the end of the midpoint what happened to her and Allison in college. I also wanted more when she finally confronted Kinnear about what he did to her 16 years ago. I understand why Allison didn’t want to say anything about her rape because she knew the school security wasn’t going to do anything about it and the cops either.

The tension between Carly and Allison and also Scarlett and Jasper was interesting yet confusing as well as Mina and Scarlett. Scarlett’s a very complex character and I wanted more of her dark side. However I did like the way her secret was revealed within the story.

I look forward to reading more of this author’s work.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Book Reviews

Book Review: Influence by Carl Weber

Title: Influence

Author: Carl Weber

Genre: Legal Thriller, Urban Fiction

Publication Date: August 28, 2018

Purchase at Amazon/ B&N

About the Book

When famed attorney Bradley Hudson learns of his youngest son Langston’s arrest for drug trafficking, he immediately assembles a team of lawyers and investigators, including members of his own family, to build a defense. With his reputation for being a shark in the courtroom, Bradley is confident he will get justice for his son—until he realizes he will be going up against an old foe, Assistant District Attorney James Brown. Is the ADA allowing his personal history with the Hudsons to influence his handling of the prosecution?

To complicate matters, Bradley discovers that his older son, Lamont, a young lawyer and Bradley’s right-hand man, has secretly been planning his exit from the family law firm to get out from under his father’s shadow.

Desiree, Bradley’s only daughter, is fresh out of law school and quite reserved compared to her siblings. She’s the good girl who doesn’t normally like to rock the boat, but in what could be considered the worst of all timing, she is secretly dating a man and a woman, and both relationships are on a collision course. Given the problems her family is facing, now is not the right time for Desiree to introduce
more drama to the mix, but she just can’t seem to help herself.

As if fighting for one son’s freedom and fending off the other’s betrayal isn’t enough pressure, Bradley is also in the middle of his own love triangle between his ex-wife, federal judge Jacqueline Hudson, and his current wife and jury consultant, Carla. He knows how much is at stake if his family’s drama spirals out of control, so he’ll do everything within his power to keep it all together and prevent his son from landing behind bars. With his trademark dramatic style, Carl Weber introduces readers to the Hudsons. Only time will tell if they can stand united, or if the legal dynasty of Bradley Hudson is about to come crashing down.

My Thoughts

A family of lawyers.

An Assistant District Attorney wanting revenge.

What could go wrong? Probably everything.

When the Hudson’s find out one of their own has been accused of drug trafficking, they go into action to get him and his friends cleared. Several obstacles get in the way. James, the assistant district attorney is hellbent on bringing Bradley down. Will his son Langston have to pay for his father’s past transgressions?

Every power family has some type of dysfunction and the Hudson are no different. The daughter Desiree can’t decide on who she wants to be with man or woman, while trying to prove she is a capable lawyer. Lamont the eldest is wanting to step away from his father’s shadow by making it on his own. Langston is being accused of drug trafficking, but stands his ground and stays loyal to his friends.

Jaqueline, the children’s mother is a federal judge, who is trying to forget what happened in the past while trying to save her son. Bradley the head of the family is known for being the best, a powerful lawyer but his tactics are not working so well this time.

In this legal thriller, a family unit and friendships are tested. There are so many hidden agendas in this book, but worth reading. Carl Weber does not disappoint and I like a book featuring a strong black family.

Rating

⭐⭐⭐⭐