Monday, February 25, 2013

Second Chance Grill by Christine Nolfi

From Nolfi's request:

Dr. Mary Chance needs a sabbatical from medicine to grieve the loss of her closest friend. But when she inherits a struggling restaurant in Liberty, Ohio she isn’t prepared for Blossom Perini. Mary can’t resist falling for the precocious preteen—or the girl’s father. The bond they forge will transform all their lives and set in motion an outpouring of love that spreads across America.

Nolfi asked me to read and review Second Chance Grill, and I immediately jumped at the chance.  The reason is that I have loved her previous books Treasure Me and Tree of Everlasting Knowledge.  Plus Second Chance Grill is the prequel to Treasure Me, so I wanted to return to Liberty and experience the characters and charm of the town.

Let me just say that if you haven't experienced any of Nolfi's writing you are missing out!  She is very talented in drawing the reader in and holding the attention until the very end!  Also you connect with the characters to the point that you experience the joys and sorrows that they experience.

Second Chance Grill is another great read!  All the elements that I love about Nolfi's writing is here.  The story drew me in quickly and I just wanted to keep reading.  In fact at the end of the story my e-reader died, and I had to let it charge just enough that I could finish it.  I was that involved that I was not happy that I couldn't finish it right then.  Especially as emotionally charged as the ending was, even though technically I knew what happened, I needed to experienced it!

The characters are great!  Having Mary and Anthony narrate the story is great, since both have things in the past that needed to be revealed.  Blossom, while had to deal with a lot for a teenager, has the typical teenager mood swings.  Plus all the other native characters you grew to love from Treasure Me make their appearances as well.

So if you can't tell you really ought to pick up this book and the others by Christine Nolfi!!

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Hour of Predators

From Barnes and Noble:
Two gruesome murders have shocked and divided the community of Bella Coola, a small, isolated village on the coast of British Columbia. The evidence points to a Nuxalk boy, and the tension between whites and tribe members heats up. RCMP Inspector Marcus Chao must sort through misleading clues, cultural conflicts, tangled relationships, sexual scandals, and rumors of sorcery to find the the truth.

I was asked to read and review the book by Lane Stark.  Since I have been enjoying mysteries, and honestly the sorcery peaked my interest I decided to try to read it.

I got to say this book held my attention pretty well!  I kept wanting to read on even though at times I had to put the book down.  The story line has so many twist and turns that it was hard to figure out what actually happened.  At points I just about believed the sorcery to be apart of it.  I was even surprised how Stark was able to tie everything together and making it seem plausible.

While I did enjoy the different perspectives from all the different characters, I will have to say that at points it was a bit confusing which one was talking when.  It was made known pretty quick, usually just a few sentences in, but still was enough to feel unsettled.  However this really didn't bother me enough to quit reading or feel like the book was bad...the book is a good read despite it.

The characters are great, they all add to the story line.  Not one seemed to be out of place.  Chao is very much like a Sherlock Holmes and the way he works reminds me of the TV show Elementary(which I love!). He may not be as quirky as Sherlock Holmes, but putting the crime scenes together is pretty amazing in my opinion!

Gemma, Claire, Daniel, and Mary Grace all are great characters!  Even if a few of them don't quite make my favorites list they definitely are quality characters!

Over all I really did enjoy the book and recommend it!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Awakened Promo

So to help Celebrate Awakened coming out on Thursday here is an excerpt courtesy of Inger Iversen!

Writing Awakened was a bit harder that the first book Few Are Angels, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Here is an excerpt from the second novel and a link to read the first few chapters of Few Are Angels, the first book in the series.
There are no spoilers in this excerpt. Enjoy!

I wasn’t sure how long the run would be. I hadn’t gone outside any further than the enclosed patio, but I was sure that the island was large enough that we would have to stop and catch our breaths sooner or later. Ana was behind us and would hopefully serve as the first line of defense against any Chorý that had followed us into the woods. I glanced back at her in time to see the two Chorý enter the woods, headed straight for us. I wasn’t worried about myself, because if we got caught, I would at least be safe for a while, but Ana would be punished and Alex most likely killed. Ana caught the look of dread in my eyes and screamed for Alex and I to continue forward. Alex glanced back and cursed.
“Ella,” he gasped between breaths as pulled me forward faster. “It’s a long way back to the dock where we ported, but it’s a straight shot from here.” Alex’s feet seemed to move faster as he spoke, and though he easily dodged trees and shrubbery, I struggled to keep upright.
“Okay,” I huffed. My calves were on fire, and I was sure that I wouldn’t be able to run much longer. The faith that I’d earlier had in myself started to dwindle when I tripped over a large root. “There are two men back there—”
Ana was between the two Chorý, her fist deeply embedded in the face of one, and her knee made a swift but hard connection with the other’s shin. As the second fell and rolled to the side, the first Chorý quickly recovered from the bone-smashing fist to the face and backhanded Ana. Alex and I soon passed a row of trees that blocked the Chorý and Ana from sight.
“When we get on the boat, go. No turning back, no waiting for anyone—“
“Wait, whoa!” I choked out. Speaking was soon to be impossible, and my chest was seconds from exploding into a fireball of pain. I couldn't get enough oxygen in my lungs, and my knees were about to lock up on me. All of that aside, nothing hurt worse that realizing that if we got to the boat before Kale did, we would have to leave him on the island.
As I came to a halt, my brain protested. It was still in survival mode, but I wasn’t leaving Kale or Ana on the island.
Alex skidded to halt a few steps ahead of me. “Don’t do this, Ella. It’s what we all agreed to—your safety first,” Alex pled breathlessly. I almost went with him as he held out his hand and inched towards the freedom I’d dreamt about since I’d been held on the island.
“You should have known that I wouldn’t leave him here, Alex!” I could still hear Ana and the two Chorý fighting, though I couldn’t see them, but I couldn't help myself. “You had to know that, Alex, and I can’t believe you weren’t going to tell me sooner.” I turned around to head back, but a painful grip on my arm stopped me dead in my tracks.
Alex was breathing hard, his faced twisted in anger.
“I refuse to let you go back,” Alex said, and my eyes widened. “I will go back, if it means you get on that boat.” He yanked me forward, and I was too shocked to pull away at first. He pulled me over a few roots and tightened his grip as I almost tumbled to the ground. Seeing Alex this angry was shocking, but I couldn't leave Kale—I wouldn’t.
“Alex,” I gasped as I tried to pull away from him. “Maybe I can help. There has to be something I can do!”
“Don’t be stupid!” Alex pulled me so hard that I screamed out in pain.
“No, by all means be stupid and come back with me.”
We both turned to see the large Chorý leaning against the tree. His beady eyes trained on Alex as Alex pulled out his dagger and rooted himself in front of me.
“Now, now, little human,” he drawled. “That is an awfully big knife ya got there. Why don’t you put it down so you don’t poke your eye out?” the Chorý taunted with an evil grin.
“Back. Off,” was Alex’s hard reply. I peeked over his shoulder for Ana; Alex nudged me back, pushing me against a tree. I knew he wanted me to run, but there was no way that I was leaving Alex alone with that Chorý.
“Hmm. Now, son, let me do you a favor.” The Chorý slowly moved away from the tree and stood up straight. His leaning position had hid the fact that he was almost seven feet tall. Alex was not prepared for the Chory’s skills, either. “Instead of taking you back to my master, how about I sink my teeth into the thick vein on the side of your neck and end you painlessly?”
“What in the—” Alex balked. He turned to me for a second, with confusion and nervousness in his eyes. Alex had no clue what he was dealing with, and it was my fault. I should have told him before I was taken.
“Oh, please. Don’t tell me you don’t know a Chorý when you see one, boy. I know the Council has trained you better than that.” The Chorý stifled laughter.
“Dude, are trying to say that you’re a freaking vampire?” Alex asked in amazement. “Ella, you need to run now. This dude is not only immortal; he is insane.” He spat the last word with utter disgust.
I needed to warn him about that can of worms that he was about to open. “Alex—”
The Chorý glanced at me and growled. “Do not run, little girl.”
“Ella, I said—”
The Chorý flashed his very vampire canines.
I was shocked, too. Kale never extended his teeth, and though Ana and Darke both kept their teeth extended, they never bared them at me as a warning or anything else. I’d read in books and seen in movies how a vampire bite could feel good, but there was nothing that was going to convince me that having those long sharp teeth buried in the crook of my neck would ever feel like anything other than excruciating pain.
“What was that you said?”
“What the hell are you?” Alex asked. I moved away from the tree that I had been hugging and placed my arms around Alex’s waist. He placed his free hand on my arm and squeezed.
“Touching, but that proposition is still on the table. When Laurent gets you, he will show you no mercy. Me, on the other hand,” The Chorý pointed to his teeth. “I promise to make it feel good to the very last drop.”

Monday, February 4, 2013

Scent of Magic by Maria V. Snyder

From Barnes and Noble:
As the last Healer in the Fifteen Realms, Avry of Kazan is in a unique position: in the minds of friends and foes alike, she no longer exists. Despite her need to prevent the megalomaniacal King Tohon from winning control of the Realms, Avry is also determined to find her sister and repair their estrangement. And she must do it alone, as Kerrick, her partner and sole confidant, returns to Alga to summon his country into battle.
Though she should be in hiding, Avry will do whatever she can to support Tohon's opponents. Including infiltrating a holy army, evading magic sniffers, teaching forest skills to soldiers and figuring out how to stop Tohon's most horrible creations yet: an army of the walking dead—human and animal alike and nearly impossible to defeat.
War is coming and Avry is alone. Unless she figures out how to do the impossible...…again.

Ok as you know I just love Snyder's work and well she had a contest in which she gave away copies of Scent of Magic, of course I couldn't pass up the opportunity and entered.  Well I won, and my copy was also signed!!!  I was and still am excited by it!  Of course this was immediately moved up on my TBR mountain and honestly I do not regret it! I loved this book as much as her other books!
This is the second book in her Healer series and let me just say that the story line has several twists and turns that keep you enthralled with the book.  I loved how we are able to see Kerrick's point of view and the way the book alternates between Avry and Kerrick's storyline(It is very clear as Kerrick's chapters always say Kerrick, and Avry's are the chapters).  There is one thing  that drove me crazy, at the end of each chapter there was a cliff hanger!  Each time when I arrived at the end of the chapter and had to stop reading it, I was screaming "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!" on the inside because I had to know what happened next...then add in that the next chapter was the other narrator, the suspense to know what is happening was maddening!!!  Not in a bad way but in the way of "I have got to find more time to read so that I don't have to  wait!  Oh but now I have to wait for Touch of Death to come out!  UGGGHHHHH!!!! 

So if you haven't yet read the Healer series or any of Maria's books for that matter my only suggestion is to DROP EVERYTHING NOW AND GO GET ONE OF HER BOOKS!!!


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