Publishing Date: June 2018
Publisher’s Description: London, 1873. Walter Balanchine returns home from his travels with an air of mystery and magic about him. His lockets, potions and spells soon attract a favourable audience in Victorian London. But a labyrinthine path of sorcery, scandal and mortal danger unfolds when Walter encounters the beautiful and brooding Tamara.
Review: This novel received very high reviews but for one millennial reviewer. She wrote that she liked it but gave it a low rating. She rants about “triggers” and other identity nonsense while trying to be self-deprecating in the process. As to why anyone would give a shjt whether your’re offended or not by literary content, is laughable. Wow, the ego sure is expanding logrithmically these days.
This was a fine read. Constantly entertaining with characters that explode off the pages and movement that quickens the fire in your veins. A wonderfully crafted novel that embodies everything that makes a novel soar. Get this, and hope that Walter continues on in subsequent novels by this gifted writer.
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Publishers Description: When a series of bad decisions leads Teddy to a run-in with the police, a mysterious stranger intervenes. He invites her to apply to the School for Psychics, a facility hidden off the coast of San Francisco where students are trained like Delta Force operatives: it’s competitive, cutthroat, and highly secretive. They’ll learn telepathy, telekinesis, investigative skills, and SWAT tactics. And if students survive their training, they go on to serve at the highest levels of government, using their skills to protect America, and the world.
Review: I really liked the beginning of this novel. Grunge gambling, Teddy. Cruising the strip in search of a score. Banished from college for gambling, Teddy is trying to pay off a large debt when she is pulled out of the fire by some clandestine operatives. And then it goes to shit. What was once a gutter waif with some skillz, turns into….wait for it………Super Speshul Psychic Gurl!!!! YAY! Not only is she super hot and sexy, she can telekinithipath yur ass. Oh, and she can also astrally project herself into your MIND and see that you used to masturbate to Farrah Fawcett’s poster.
I guess the biggest question I have is why ruin a perfectly good character with patterned YA romance? There is the sordid love tribangle, a group of psychic rascals called the “misfits” and an evil government operation from which asshat was spawned.
It really feels like I have given the same review to different authors multiple times. I just can’t seem to winnow out the chaff based on the publisher’s descriptions. They are pretty good at hiding the intended audience by listing this as “Adult”. I can’t wait for Book 2 in this series. LOL.
Publishing Date: January 2018
Publishers Description: When two young sisters disappear from a strip mall parking lot in a small Pennsylvania town, their devastated mother hires an enigmatic bounty hunter, Alice Vega, to help find the girls. Immediately shut out by a local police department already stretched thin by budget cuts and the growing OxyContin and meth epidemic, Vega enlists the help of a disgraced former cop, Max Caplan. Cap is a man trying to put the scandal of his past behind him and move on, but Vega needs his help to find the girls, and she will not be denied.
Review: A real solid read in terms of character development and storyline progression. Vega is one trippin’ complex bounty hunter that keeps you entranced with her unexpected actions. Coupled with Max, Nell and all the weirdo’s, entertainment value is high indeed. I stayed up late for two nights getting into it, and I am hopeful that another will follow……SOON!
Publishing Date: October 2017
Publishers Description: In a remote corner of the Chickasaw Nation, tribal Lighthorse policeman Bill Maytubby and county deputy Hannah Bond discover the buzzard-ravaged body of Majesty Tate, a young drifter with a blank past. They comb Oklahoma’s rock prairie, river bottoms, and hard-bitten small towns for traces of her last days.
Review: An entertaining read that has a unique style of delivery. Often abrupt in scene progression and dialogue, the story line was rendered in interesting fashion. Maytubby was a great character that brought an intense procedural mien to the fore. The world building was pretty good in that you would never want to live under that areas intense heat and 1,000 yard stares.
If you’re expecting a Tony Hillerman type mystery, forget it. This is more police procedural than mystery where the bit players are impacted by happenstance and the bad guys are known. The ultimate bad person is an unexpected event in that they were never a relevant part of the story.
I really enjoyed the style of writing but this could have used a big dose of “whodunit”.
Publishing Date: August 2016
Publishers Description: Drawn into a web of deceit and maniacal revenge, Salvo finds himself in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Now he’s a fish-out-of-water–an L.A. private eye in a strange land.
Review: Jack’s back and this time he’s banging ballerinas and facing down the Russian mob.
The scant reviews that currently exist are mixed but mostly favorable. This is noir at it’s finest where the narrative is detailed and the detecting, procedurally obdurate. I liked Jack although the supporting cast was rather one- dimensional. There is good movement throughout the novel and the storyline is interesting, especially the Russian segment. I had a good time reading this, and in the end, that’s what matters.
Publishing Date: October 2015
Publisher Description: When Lee Barrett spots the same style oak bureau she once had as a child on the WICH-TV show, Shopping Salem, she rushes to the antiques shop and buys the piece. Just like the beloved bureau she lost in a fire, this one has secret compartments.
Review: Not being a sexist pig when I say: “This is a book for chicks”. It edges upon the Nora Roberts school of writing where every daily detail of life is iterated. I am sure I care, somewhere in an alternate universe, about how my bedroom is decorated and that my frumpy Aunt is making me an English muffin with homemade jam. If I ever need to properly discern the value of flatware and a choice between Franciscan dinnerware or Majolica, I might open this novel as a reference guide. Should I entertain a lady, I will be sure to have Egyptian cotton sheets and soft subtle lighting at the ready. One day, God forbid, I will have a stupid cat that has human mannerisms. Should my sense of anthropomorphic behavior override common sense, I will continue to talk to all of my friends about the need for a cat door with such gravity that anyone within shitting distance will fall over themselves to install it for me.
“So how does this get two stars?”, you ask. The author chose some restraint in Lee’s infatuation with hunky cop guy. She’s fairly independent yet not very bright when it comes to obvious clues. She wants a simple life but just happens to be well off. Which means she can afford to be simplistic. She has a fiery temperament that matches her hair yet allows people around her to manipulate.
I guess the only mystery here is how dumbass can find her butt in a dark room. The clues as well as the plot are obvious as are the sinister people and their designs. The infusion of a cat familiar is supposed to lend some validity to Lee’s gifts by making her more speshul. Only she comes off vague, spoiled, temperamental and skittish.
Publisher: Black Shadow
Publishing Date: May 2015
Publisher Description: Everything seems peaceful in the small town of B Movie Hell until a mysterious serial killer in a skull mask topped with a red mohawk shows up and starts butchering the locals. Government agents Jack Munson and Milena Fonseca are sent to track down and eliminate the masked psychopath. But as they soon discover, the residents of B Movie Hell don’t want their help. This is a town like no other, and the locals have many dark secrets….
Review: Jack Munson aint drunk, he’s just drinkin’. (Chorus) “But you’re so high!!”. Amongst this dysfunctional denial lies the cunning and skill of a CIA type spook who makes problems vanish and boy do they have a problem in the form of a maniacal serial killing machine. I really can’t say too much about the story line as it is fairly entrenched from start to finish. The characters are memorable and are built along with the fast pace. The world building is superb.
Wow, what a fun ride. That town had it comin’…….