Thursday, October 12, 2017

Review: Darkness at the Edge of Town by Jennifer Harlow

Title: Darkness at the Edge of Town
Author: Jennifer Harlow
Series: Iris Ballard #2

Genre: Thriller
Publication: November 14th 2017 by Alibi

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | Kobo
Rating: 4/5

A complicated, charismatic forensic psychologist tries to rescue her brother from the clutches of a maniacal cult leader in this edge-of-your-seat psychological thriller from the author of Beautiful Maids All in a Row.

After catching an infamous serial killer, Dr. Iris Ballard has become a TV sensation. Exhausted from her appearances on the talk-show circuit, she’s looking forward to some quality time with Luke Hudson, her former FBI partner and on-again, off-again lover. The last thing Iris wants is to get pulled back to her dying Rust Belt hometown, but after the frantic call from her mother, she doesn’t have a choice.

Iris is a disgrace in Grey Mills, Pennsylvania, but her twin brother has gone and outdone her. Billy has abandoned his fiancée, drained their checking account, and quit his job to join a cult called the New Morning Movement. Expecting to find something sinister at play, Iris is eager to destroy the quixotic hold they have on her brother. And that means outwitting the cult’s cunning, sadistic founder, Mathias Morning.

Iris has logic and reason on her side. But Mathias doesn’t play by society’s rules. Just as Iris begins to lose hope, her investigation leads her to cross path with the DEA. And now she needs to save Billy’s life before they’re both caught in the crossfire.

Darkness at the Edge of Town is the second Iris Ballard thriller by Jennifer Harlow. I think I preferred the first book a little bit more but I still thought it was a great thriller that kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time.

This book felt more personal to Iris because it involved her twin brother Billy, who joined a cult and disappeared on his girlfriend Gia and his own family. To find her brother, Iris infiltrates the cult, which is not without its dangers, obviously. I really liked that this story involved a cult because it made for a nice change from the first book. I really dislike it when thrillers keep being the same theme with each book so it made everything pretty intriguing. 

I'm also glad to say that I also still am a big fan of Iris Ballard. She's one of my favorite heroines from this author's books. Iris is not a perfect person at all, but I totally love her sarcastic and witty side. I was also glad to see her relationship with Luke grow a bit more through the story, especially towards the end. I've been shipping them since the first book.

I have to admit that there wasn't as much suspense as there was in the first book. Don't get me wrong, there definitely was suspense but it wasn't on the same level as the first book, in my opinion. The writing was also really great, just like in the first book. Not that this was a big surprise to me becaue I've always loved the author's writing style.

Overall, Darkness at the Edge of Town by Jennifer Harlow is a thriller you definitely need to read. I really enjoyed the story, the characters and the eerie feel of the cult.  

You can read my review of the first Iris Ballard book, Beautiful Maids All in A Row here

About Jennifer:
Jennifer Harlow spent her restless childhood fighting with her three brothers and scaring the heck out of herself with horror movies and books. She grew up to earn a degree at the University of Virginia which she put to use as a radio DJ, crisis hotline volunteer, bookseller, lab assistant, wedding coordinator, and government investigator. Currently she calls Atlanta home but that restless itch is ever present. In her free time she continues to scare the beejepers out of herself watching scary movies and opening her credit card bills.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Can't-Wait Wednesday: Restore Me by Tahereh Mafi

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. It's based on Waiting On Wednesday hosted at Breaking the Spine.

Restore Me by Tahereh Mafi
Expected publication: March 6th 2018 by HarperCollins

The girl with the power to kill with a single touch now has the world in the palm of her hand.

Juliette and Warner’s story continues in the electrifying fourth installment of Tahereh Mafi’s New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series.

Juliette Ferrars thought she’d won. She took over Sector 45, was named the new Supreme Commander of North America, and now has Warner by her side. But when tragedy strikes, she must confront the darkness that dwells both around and inside her.

Who will she become in the face of adversity? Will she be able to control the power she wields, and use it for good?

I'm both excited and nervous for Restore Me. Excited because yay another Shatter Me book and more Warner! Nervous because as with every book it can be either good or bad. I really don't want this book to be disappointing. The cover is lovely, at least!

What do you think of this book? Let me know in the comments!

Monday, October 9, 2017

Review: Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo

Title: Wonder Woman: Warbringer
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Series: DC Icons #1
Publication: August 31st 2017 by Penguin Books Ltd

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | Kobo | Book Depository

Rating: 3/5

She will become a legend but first she is Diana, Princess of the Amazons. And her fight is just beginning...

Diana is desperate to prove herself to her warrior sisters. But when the opportunity comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law to save a mere mortal, Alia Keralis. With this single heroic act, Diana may have just doomed the world.

Alia is a Warbringer - a descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery. Diana and Alia will face an army of enemies, mortal and divine, determined to destroy or possess the Warbringer.

To save the world, they must stand side by side against the tide of war.

So... eh. I'm a bit disappointed with Wonder Woman: Warbringer. This book was so hyped and it's written by Leigh Bardugo (I love all her other books) so I had expected to totally love it but I obviously didn't. I feel like I missed something in it that everyone else did see. Did I like it? Yes, I did but I had expected more from the story and the characters. 

I actually really liked Diana. She was wonderful and I really enjoyed reading about her. I also liked all the mythology stuff, which is no surprise if you know me just a little bit. And the story in general was also pretty good, in my opinion. Honestly, I wish it had focused just a little bit more on Diana.

So with all of these possitive things why didn't I like this book more? Well, I actually couldn't give a damn about any of the other characters (aside from the Amazons). Alia, Nim, Theo, Jason... I just didn't care about them. Sure, they had their moments and I enjoyed their banter but other than that I was all "meh" about them. 

I do have to mention that the big plot twist was pretty good. I hadn't seen it coming at all and that's always a good thing for me. This character in particular took me by surprise in that way. I have to give some points for that. 

All in all, Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo was an okay read. Nothing spectacular and true, I was slightly disappointed but it had some good moments for sure and I adored Diana.  

About Leigh:
Leigh Bardugo is a #1 New York Times bestselling author of fantasy novels and the creator of the Grishaverse. With over one million copies sold, her Grishaverse spans the Shadow and Bone Trilogy, the Six of Crows Duology, and The Language of Thorns— with more to come. Her short stories can be found in multiple anthologies, including The Best of and the Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy. Her other works include Wonder Woman: Warbringer, and the forthcoming Ninth House. Leigh was born in Jerusalem, grew up in Southern California, graduated from Yale University, and has worked in advertising, journalism, and even makeup and special effects. These days, she lives and writes in Los Angeles, where she can occasionally be heard singing with her band.

Website | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Stacking The Shelves: October 7, 2017

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly bookish meme hosted @ Tynga's Reviews & Reading Reality.

The Atlantis Gene by A.G. Riddle

Kindle version bought for $0.99 on Amazon

To the Ends of the Earth by Skye Warren
Kindle version bought for $1.84 on Amazon. Weird price, right? But still cheap!

For Review:
The Brightest Sun by Adrianne Benson

I thought this sounded amazing + it's set in Africa.

If You Were Mine by Melanie Harlow
Had to grab this free Kindle book because I heard good thing about it. It's still free, by the way!

Have you read any of these books or which ones do you think look interesting? Share your thoughts!

Have a great weekend, everyone! ♥

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Review: The Nosferatu Chronicles: Origins by Susan Hamilton

Title: The Nosferatu Chronicles: Origins
Author: Susan Hamilton 
Publication: May 6th 2015

Genre: Science Fiction, Historical Fiction
Purchase Link: Amazon
Rating: 4/5

Book 1 of the epic space opera reveals how the vampire legend is the result of a secret alien invasion/colonization that began with a crash landing in Transylvania in the 15th Century and a First Contact that went horribly wrong.

The Vambir discover human blood is a nutrient, but it is also highly addictive. Ingesting blood brings about a physical transformation that enables them to pass as humans. Impressed with their superior strength and vicious fighting skills, Prince Vlad Dracula welcomes them into his inner circle, where they attain power through him.

I knew that The Nosferatu Chronicles: Origins would be a really interesting read for me. I love historical fiction as well as science fiction and I'm always intrigued when a book features the historical Vlad Dracula. I was a little worried, though, that the whole mix of these different themes would be a little too much for me to handle because I like my books to be historically accurate. But I ended up not being able to put this book down. And it's been ages since I read a book where I just had to stay up late to finish it.

The story starts with the Vampir, an alien race leaving their home planet after a natural disaster made it uninhabitable. Some of these aliens end up on Earth in 15th Century Romania, and this is where Vlad Dracula, more commonly known as Vlad the Impaler, comes in. 

So like I said before, I like the historical fiction that I read to be as accurate as possible and although this book some alternate history woven in, it is in fact partly historically accurate because some of the events involving Vlad the Impaler and Mehmed II, also known as Mehmed the Conqueror, did actually happen. Needless to say this is something that really made me happy and why I devoured this book so quickly.

I do have to admit that at one point some of the story got a little bit hard to follow because this book is written in quite a few different points of view, which I don't mind actually but sometimes it all started to blend together a little bit so I feel like you really got to keep yourself focused on the story or you might get confused. I did really like the whole mix of aliens and vampire folklore. It was just such a different and original story. I was totally hooked!

Overall, The Nosferatu Chronicles: Origins was definitely a one-of-a-kind book. Susan Hamilton created a unique blend of science fiction and historical fiction with a story that I really liked. I'd recommend it to readers who love aliens, vampires and/or alternate history.

Follow Susan Hamilton on: