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Friday, February 26, 2016

Review: Murder on a Silver Platter by Shawn Reilly Simmons

Murder on a Silver Platter
by Shawn Reilly Simmons

Genre: Crime, Cozy Mystery, Romance
Publication: February 23rd, 2016 by Henery Press
Format: Kindle Edition, 276 pages
Source: Netgalley, ARC
Connect: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
Penelope Sutherland and her Red Carpet Catering company just got their big break as the on-set caterer for an upcoming blockbuster. But when she discovers a dead body outside her house, Penelope finds herself in hot water. Things start to boil over when serious accidents threaten the lives of the cast and crew. And when the film’s star, who happens to be Penelope’s best friend, is poisoned, the entire production is nearly shut down.

Threats and accusations send Penelope out of the frying pan and into the fire as she struggles to keep her company afloat. Before Penelope can dish up dessert, she must find the killer or she’ll be the one served up on a silver platter.

I love books with a hint of mystery and food. Naturally, I have to read 'Murder on a Silver Platter' by Shawn Reilly Simmons. And I am very glad that I picked up this book. 

Murder on a Silver Platter starts immediately when Penelope and her friend, Arlena found a dead body outside her house while searching for their dog, Zazoo. Penelope is a very likeable character. She's smart, independent and loyal. She was always looking after Arlena, which was how she got into investigating a murder and accidents that happened around Arlena. The supporting characters made the story much more lively and interesting. I enjoyed getting to know them all, especially Arlena's father, Randall.

The author's writing style was easy to get into. I can't put down the book. Shawn Reilly Simmons writes a really good mystery with good characters and twists that you wouldn't see it coming. I know I didn't. I was hooked to read until the end to find out who did what and why. There was a hint of romance between Penelope and a cop, who was also her childhood friend. I would definitely recommend 'Murder on a Silver Platter' to cozy mystery fans.

I received a copy of this book from the Netgalley & Henery Press in exchange for my review.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Release Day Blitz: Waking Amy by Julieann Dove

Welcome to Waking Amy Release Day Blitz! Don't forget to visit the other participating blogs as well.

Waking Amy (Amy, #1)
by Julieann Dove

Genre: Women's Fiction, Chick Lit
Publication: February 23, 2016
Buy: Amazon
Amy Whitfield is blindsided when she comes home and finds a note on the fridge from her husband, Wesley, stating that after four years of marriage, he’s leaving her. Amy was in the midst of trying to spice things up, to bring life back to their boring marriage. It seems now that she was too late.

As Amy sits with her head between her knees, trying to figure out what to do next, a call comes from Mercer General Hospital. The ER nurse is telling Amy’s answering machine that Wesley has been in a car accident.

When Amy arrives at the hospital, she finds her husband in a coma. The doctors say there is no sign of brain damage, and Wesley will eventually wake up. Relieved, Amy sees this as her second chance: the chance to get it right this time. To channel the girl Wesley won’t leave when he regains consciousness… She just needs some help to pull it off. After all, she was voted girl most likely to die a virgin in high school.

Amy would never figure on getting that help from Mark Reilly…Wesley’s doctor! He’s a non-committer, too-cute-for-his-own-good bachelor, and completely the guy Amy begins falling for. It’s a race against time to see who wakes up first—Amy or her husband.

About the Author:

Julieann lives in Virginia, yet longs to live everywhere else. It doesn’t come as a surprise that along with her gypsy soul, comes an active imagination. That’s why she loves to write and invent worlds and people, so that she can formulate their happily ever after. Hobbies include cooking new recipes, sewing, and spending time with her cute boyfriend/husband and five fabulous children. Vacations happen in Nantucket or the Carolina beaches—anywhere there is inspiration for her next book. One day she hopes to travel to Italy, drive one of those little cars around the countryside, and speak the language fluently!

Participating Blogs

Friday, February 19, 2016

Review: My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

My Life Next Door
by Huntley Fitzpatrick

Genre: Romance, Young Adult, Contemporary
Publication: June 13th, 2013 by Speak
Format: Paperback, 394 pages
Source: Own
Connect: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram
"One thing my mother never knew, and would disapprove of most of all, was that I watched the Garretts. All the time."

The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, messy, affectionate. And every day from her rooftop perch, Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs up next to her and changes everything.

As the two fall fiercely for each other, stumbling through the awkwardness and awesomeness of first love, Jase's family embraces Samantha - even as she keeps him a secret from her own. Then something unthinkable happens, and the bottom drops out of Samantha's world. She's suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?

A transporting debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another.

I know that I should have read this book sooner. I mean, the book has been sitting on my shelf for a while, and I've seen lots of wonderful reviews about this book. But finally, I decided that it's time to indulge myself in this one. I wanted to read something light after I've been in a long reading slump.

Samantha had a perfect life and an attentive mother. She loved to watch her neighbor, the Garretts, who are not like her family. Samantha's world changed when she met Jase, a Garrett, after he climbed up next to her. It was a beginning of their love story. But, just like any other good love story, there's always a little bit of drama. Samantha and Jase's relationship was tested when something happened, and Samantha had to decide if she was going to choose her family, or the Garrets.

I love this book. It was exactly what I wanted to read. Like Samantha, I too have fallen in love with the Garretts. It was hard not to fall in love with Jase. And George. It was fun to get to know their family and their various personalities. The author is amazing at creating the lovable and believable characters. 

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick is a great YA contemporary romance. It was light, funny, and cute. It made me go through the emotional roller coaster ride with the unexpected drama. But in the end, everything worked out. I would definitely recommend this book to contemporary romance lover.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Review: Missing Dad: Wanted by J. Ryan

Missing Dad: Wanted
by J. Ryan

Genre: Crime, Thriller, Suspense, Romance, Young Adult
Publication: November 5th, 2015
Format: Kindle Edition, 133 pages
Source: Netgalley, ARC
Connect: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
Missing Dad – Wanted is the first in a new series featuring the gutsy Joe St Aubin, the teenage son of a secret agent who has disappeared while working undercover.

Sixteen year old Joe and his girlfriend Becks Bowman must learn the hard way how to deal with the criminal underworld after his father, secret agent Commander Julius Grayling, disappears. Desperately missing his father and failing at school, Joe is in deep trouble for driving underage, and suspected of a hit and run. In a chance encounter with the real culprit, a drug runner, Joe attracts the attention of billionaire drugs baron Alfredo Bertolini, who is hell bent on revenge.

Joe is offered a glamorous job as chauffeur to the charismatic Monsieur Le Directeur of L’Ētoile Fine Wines, but his world implodes when he realises that he has been set up as a drug runner, in a Bentley loaded with cocaine and men with guns behind him. In the most terrifying drive of his life, Joe has to resort to some unusual tactics to deal with his unwelcome company.

But even more danger awaits Joe and Becks when they confront Monsieur Le Directeur. The price of discovering whether he is friend or foe to Joe’s father turns into a nightmare of darkness, fire and water that drives the teenagers to the edge of despair.

This series draws its appeal from Joe’s desperate search and love for his father and features compelling characters, fast cars and heart-stopping action.

Missing Dad: Wanted is the first book by J. Ryan. Joe St. Aubin is the  son of a secret agent who has disappeared while working undercover. He got into trouble for driving underage, and suspected of a hit and run. Joe soon encountered the real culprit and upsetting the billionaire drug. 

This book was really exciting, fast-paced and thrilling. Joe was a teenage boy who missed his dad and would sometimes get into trouble. I like Joe and his characters. But, I find it was a bit hard to believe how Joe got the job with his age. The story was really thrilling. I especially enjoyed the driving and the car chasing. The author's description of the fast-driving scene was exciting. It was like watching a movie. I bet the car chasing scene would look really good in a movie. There was also a bit of mystery surrounding Joe's father. Turns out that Joe found out a bit about his father while working for L’Ētoile Fine Wines.

I would totally recommend this thrilling young adult books to crime lover. There are just enough suspense, mystery and romance in the book. I was a bit disappointed that Joe hadn't learnt a lot more about his father in this book, but I hope to see more Joe and his adventure to find out what happen to his father in the next book.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Review: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

Carry On
by Rainbow Rowell

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance
Publication: October 6th, 2015 by St. Martin's Griffin
Format: Hardcover, 522 pages
Source: Own
Connect: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen.

That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right.

Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story—but far, far more monsters.

I enjoyed reading Raibow Rowell's Fangirl, and had pre-ordered Carry On when I found out that the author was going to write a story about Simon and Baz.

I love Carry On! I do think that the beginning of the book was a bit slow, but everything began to get much more interesting when Baz, Simon's nemesis showed up. The plot was straightforward, but, with a bit twist at the end that I totally wasn't expecting. I am contented with how the story goes and how it ended. But, I wouldn't mind for a sequel just to find out what will happen to Simon next.

Rainbow Rowell was really good with her characters in all her books. The characters in Carry On were brilliant. I love Simon interaction with Penny and Baz. Especially with Baz. I especially love the development with Simon and Baz. There were lots of moments that made me squealed and laughed maniacally, like a crazy fangirl. And then, I would reread a few of the scenes again, because it made me happy.

I have to say that Carry On was not what I had imagined or expected at first, But that didn't mean that I didn't enjoy it. I've been pondering whether to give this book 4 or 5 stars. In the end, I think Carry On deserved 5 stars. I don't really mind if people are comparing Simon with Harry Potter, or saying that Carry On was a fanfiction to Harry Potter. I enjoyed the book, and had fun reading Carry On. I think, that was what matter most. 

P.S: I've participated in Romance Is in the Air Giveaway Hop hosted by Bookhounds, which run from Feb 4 to 14, and listed Carry On by Rainbow Rowell as the prize. You should totally check it out before the giveaway ends.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Review: Ghostwriter Anonymous by Noreen Wald

Ghostwriter Anonymous (A Jake O'Hara Mystery)
by Noreen Wald

Genre: Romance, Cozy Mystery
Publication: Mar 1, 2016 by Henery Press
Format: e-books
Source: NetGalley, ARC
Connect: Website
With her books sporting other people’s names, ghostwriter Jake O’Hara works behind the scenes. But she never expected a séance at a New York apartment to be part of her job. Jake had signed on as a ghostwriter, secretly writing for a grande dame of mystery fiction whose talent died before she did. The author’s East Side residence was impressive. But her entourage—from a Mrs. Danvers-like housekeeper to a lurking hypnotherapist—was creepy.

Still, it was all in a day’s work, until a killer started going after ghostwriters, and Jake suspected she was chillingly close to the culprit. Attending a séance and asking the dead for spiritual help was one option. Some brilliant sleuthing was another-before Jake’s next deadline turns out to be her own funeral.

I haven't been reading any cozy mystery this recently, and was in the mood to read one. I was happy when I found this book, Ghostwriter Anonymous by Noreen Wald. Instantly, I was hooked by the pretty cover and the promising blurbs.

Sadly, I didn't like Ghostwriter Anonymous as much as I expected to. I love Jake O'Hara's character. It was fun to read a ghostwriter mystery. I love the idea and the plot. It was new and fresh to me. The mystery behind the murders were interesting to keep me reading. But there has been just too much character in the book. It was kind of confusing sometimes. It didn't help that I didn't have much care about the minor characters or the bits of romance. It was surprising to find out who the murderer was at the end of the book, but I was disappointed on how the murderer was revealed.

Overall, Ghostwriter Anonymous by Noreen Wald was an okay cozy mystery read with interesting, but not so complicated plot.

I received a copy of this book from the author/Netgalley/publisher in exchange for my review

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Romance Is In The Air Giveaway Hop (INT)

Welcome to the Romance Is In The Air Giveaway Hop (INT)
Feb 4 - 14

It has been a while since I participated in any giveaway hop. I am very excited to be taking part in the Romance Is in the Air Giveaway Hop hosted by Bookhounds

This time, I'm giving away one of the books as shown above. You may choose either Carry On by Rainbow Rowell, a fantasy with a hint of romance that will surely make you squeal like a crazy fangirl, or, I've Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella, not really a new book from Sophie Kinsella, but one of my absolute romance/chicklit novels from her. It's got enough romance and lots of humorous moments.

Okay. Here's how you can enter this giveaway:
  • .Enter via rafflecopter
  • This is an International giveaway as long as ship them to your country.
  • ONE winner will be notified via email.  Winners will have 48 hours to respond before another winner will be selected. I'm not responsible for any lost package.
  • Have fun and good luck! Be sure to check out the other giveaway stops on this blog hop:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

I actually picked two winners for this giveaway. Yay! Congratulation to Tabathia B and  Bethany Nelson! For those who didn't win, do check out my blog for another giveaway soon.


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