Review | The Yankee Club

The Yankee Club

Author: Michael Murphy
Series: Jake & Laura Mystery, #1
Genre: Mystery, Historical Fiction, Suspense
Publisher: Alibi (Random House Publishing Group)
Expected Publication Date: August 12th, 2014
Format: ebook
Pages: 220
Source: NetGalley
Purchase: Amazon | B&N

 photo 43968bbc-d4b3-489f-a604-973a70d99be8_zps5bec76ae.jpg
In Michael Murphy’s action-packed Prohibition-era novel of suspense, a mystery writer returns to the bright lights and dark alleys of New York City—uncovering a criminal conspiracy of terrifying proportions.

In 1933, America is at a crossroads: Prohibition will soon be history, organized crime is rampant, and President Roosevelt promises to combat the Great Depression with a New Deal. In these uncertain times, former-Pinkerton-detective-turned-bestselling-author Jake Donovan is beckoned home to Manhattan. He has made good money as the creator of dashing gumshoe Blackie Doyle, but the price of success was Laura Wilson, the woman he left behind. Now a Broadway star, Laura is engaged to a millionaire banker—and waltzing into a dangerous trap.

Before Jake can win Laura back, he’s nearly killed—and his former partner is shot dead—after a visit to the Yankee Club, a speakeasy dive in their old Queens neighborhood. Suddenly Jake and Laura are plunged into a conspiracy that runs afoul of gangsters, sweeping from New York’s private clubs to the halls of corporate power and to the White House itself. Brushing shoulders with the likes of Dashiell Hammett, Cole Porter, and Babe Ruth, Jake struggles to expose an inconspicuous organization hidden in plain sight, one determined to undermine the president and change the country forever.

 photo goodreads_zpsbfc5d95d.png


 photo c84e18c8-8677-4526-89d4-fbd17c81445a_zpscae30e67.jpg

**I received an advanced copy of The Yankee Club from NetGalley via Random House Publishing in exchange for an honest review**

First Impression

After reading Eyes On You by Kate White I wanted to dive into as many Mystery/Suspense novels as I could. So when I got contacted by TLC Book Tours and was given the synopsis for The Yankee Club I just couldn’t say no! And boy am I ever glad I didn’t. Historical Fiction and Mystery set in 1933? Toss me a dress, heels and pearl and call me doll!!

Opening Lines

As my train drew closer to New York City, the dining car’s rhythmic sway offered no comfort to the painful memories I left behind two years earlier.”

The Good

Setting – I was a tad bit nervous when I started The Yankee Club because I knew nothing about the Prohibition-era. Of course I’ve heard of it but I didn’t know every detail as why it came to be and how the era came to an end. Previous to Chapter 1 we’re giving a paragraph (I hope this included in the final copy) outlining what New York City was like in 1933 that gives readers a perfect introduction and back story.

Mystery – I got a new love, and it’s called Mystery. Sometimes mystery books just aren’t really that mysterious. I hate when you can actually predict what is going to happen and how it will all play out. Does that happen in The Yankee Club? NOPE!

Characters – Throughout The Yankee Club we are introduced to many different characters. Sometimes you come across a character that you can instantly tell is just a filler, and other times you come across characters that you think are just unnecessary. Neither of these happened in this novel. Every character played a part, and they played it well! The secondary characters held their own and helped the story and mystery flow.

Description/Style – Michael Murphy has a way with words. There were so many different points throughout The Yankee Club that had me feeling like I was actually there. The description was just perfect, and the amount of detail given gives readers a beautiful insight to life in the 1930’s.

I smiled and tossed the hankie out the side window. I glanced behind the car and watched a breeze toss it around like a kite in Central Park. As we turned the corner, the hankie fluttered between two cars then skidded along the sidewalk and disappeared in the streets of New York.”

The Bad

  • Nothing I would consider bad.

The In-Between

Character Depth – Michael Murphy gives us very entertaining and dynamic characters but at times I felt that these characters lacked having full depth to them. Secondary characters played key roles and we’re just as important as the main characters but I felt there was no real growth from majority of them.

Lasting Impression

Overall, The Yankee Club was a fantastic mystery read!! Shady characters, corruption, romance, mystery and suspense and not once did any of these factors overthrow the plot. I can’t wait to read All That Glitters which is the next book in A Jake and Laura Mystery series. Do I recommend this books? Yes. Will I read it again? Definitely before the month is over :).

 photo 11cf41c7-1e98-4802-b5cb-c4d74927f760_zpsa5a331f4.jpg

4 Stars

 photo 3404dbb5-6554-4151-83c4-1b81b767d1ad_zps22cf7bae.jpg

Enter to win a $25 gift card!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

This review is part of a blog tour organized by TLC Book Tours. Click here to follow the tour and reader other reviewers thoughts!

 photo tlc-logo-resized_zps246cc4ef.png

 

Thanks for stopping by!

signature1

Advertisements

ARC Review | Strange and Ever After (Something Strange and Deadly, #3)

 photo SaEA3_zps09bb174a.png


Strange and Ever After

Author: Susan Dennard
Series: Something Strange and Deadly, #3
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Historical Fiction
Publisher: HarperTeen
Expected Publication Date: July 22nd, 2014
Format: eARC
Source: FFBC
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

 photo 43968bbc-d4b3-489f-a604-973a70d99be8_zps5bec76ae.jpg

In the conclusion to the trilogy that Publishers Weekly called “a roaring—and addictive—gothic world,” Eleanor Fitt must control her growing power, face her feelings for Daniel, and confront the evil necromancer Marcus…all before it’s too late.

He took her brother, he took her mother, and now, Marcus has taken her good friend Jie. With more determination than ever to bring this sinister man to justice, Eleanor heads to the hot desert streets of nineteenth-century Egypt in hopes of ending this nightmare. But in addition to her increasingly tense relationships with Daniel, Joseph, and her demon, Oliver, Eleanor must also deal with her former friend, Allison, who has curiously entangled herself in Eleanor’s mission.

With the rising dead chomping at her every move and Jie’s life hanging in the balance, Eleanor is convinced that her black magic will see her through to the bitter end. But there will be a price. Though she and the Spirit Hunters have weathered every battle thus far, there will be consequences to suffer this time—the effects of which will be irreversible. And when it’s over, only some will be able to live a strange and ever after.

Susan Dennard will leave readers breathless and forever changed in the concluding pages of this riveting ride.

 photo goodreads_zpsbfc5d95d.png


** I received an advanced copy from HarperTeen via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.**

 photo c84e18c8-8677-4526-89d4-fbd17c81445a_zpscae30e67.jpg

First Impression

Something Strange and Deadly was a series I’d hear people talk about often but in all honesty I really had no idea that they were talking about. So I finally did my research, read the synopsis and I knew this would be a good series!! How often do you come across the combination of zombies in an historical setting? Never. While I did really want to read the books I never had the motivation to start them until I came across the blog tour. I went out and bought the previous books and dove head first into this world, and boy I’m happy I did!

Opening Lines

I was not suppose to be here. Oliver would be furious. Joseph even more so. This dock was the no-man’s-land between realms. It was a place for ghosts.”

The Good

Sometimes books can be predictable, okay most times, but especially when a series comes to an end. When I started Something Strange and Deadly I didn’t know what to expect, neither with A Darkness Strange and Lovely. Although, I have to admit I feel like A Darkness Strange and Lovely suffered a bit from middle book syndrome. But when it came to Strange and Ever After I thought I had it all mapped out. I didn’t think there would be any MORE surprises and I was beyond wrong. The thing that I loved the most about this book was the character development, through the past books we see Eleanor trying to come to terms with all that is right and wrong and I feel that as a final book she finally blossomed! Now Oliver and Daniel, I wasn’t sure what path she would take with these two characters and you won’t be able to either.

Now for the heartbreaking part: the ending. While I was getting closer and closer to finishing Strange and Ever After I started to realize where Susan was going. I screamed “NO!” at my book because I couldn’t believe she would actually do it, but she did! She gives you an ending you don’t really see coming, and although I hate it, it was the perfect and most fitting ending I could ask for. Lastly, I found that as each book was written Susan just kept on improving. Not to say that the previous books were written poorly, they weren’t, it was just that she was so descriptive in the final installment and I went through so many different feelings! I’ll leave you with two quotes that I loved and are the only ones that won’t really spoil anything. While this review can seem vague I just don’t won’t to spoil ANYTHING for anybody, because this book was beautiful as much as it was perfect and one I think everyone needs read.

 photo 9181527_zpse29ba303.gif

“…because I could not have my good-bye. My final “I love you”. There would be nothing.”

“Tears ran down my cheeks, but I didn’t mind. They were as common as spring rain these days-and I hoped just as cleansing.

The Bad

  • The fact that it had to come to an END!!! But really there is nothing I would consider bad.

The In-Between

  • Still haven’t come across anything.

Lasting Impression

Overall, Strange and Ever After is a beautifully written conclusion to this trilogy. I can’t express how much I want everyone to pick up this book! If you haven’t read this book yet, get it! If you haven’t read the previous books, go pick them up! Strange and Ever After won’t be released until July 22nd, so you have time! I’m so excited and looking forward to Susan’s next series Truthwitch that is expected to release sometime in 2015, let the waiting game begin.

 photo 11cf41c7-1e98-4802-b5cb-c4d74927f760_zpsa5a331f4.jpg

4.5 stars

 photo 3404dbb5-6554-4151-83c4-1b81b767d1ad_zps22cf7bae.jpg

– One (1) hardback copy of Strange and Ever After (US only)
– One (1) E-book of Strange and Ever After (INT)
*Giveaway ends on July 22nd, 2014!*

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 photo df37543c-805c-4244-93c9-4fd84e14574e_zpsb0c39b6f.jpg

I am a writer, reader, lover of animals, and eater of cookies. I used to be a marine biologist, but now I write novels. And not novels about fish either, but novels about kick-butt heroines and swoon-worthy rogues (I really like swoon-worthy rogues).

I live in the Midwest with my husband and two dogs (Asimov and Princess Leia), and you can learn more about my crazy thoughts and crippling cookie-addiction on my blog or twitter.

My debut, SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY is now available from HarperTeen along with the prequel, A DAWN MOST WICKED, and the sequel A DARKNESS STRANGE & LOVELY.

Look for STRANGE & EVER AFTER in summer 2014 and TRUTHWITCH in fall 2015!

Note: I am on Goodreads to READ. So, if you want to discuss books and the joys of literature, add me as a friend.

Links: Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook

 photo FFBCFOLLOWTOUR_zpse0f4af4a.png

 photo FFBCbadge_zpsddcaf1bc.png

 

Thanks for stopping by!

signature1

ARC Review | Uncovering Her Nine Month Secret

Uncovering Her Nine Month Secret

Author: Jennie Lucas
Series: Standalone
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
Publisher: Harlequin
Expected Publication Date: July 15th / August 1st, 2014
Format: eARC
Source: Harlequin / NetGalley
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

 photo 43968bbc-d4b3-489f-a604-973a70d99be8_zps5bec76ae.jpg

“You wouldn’t have been able to resist either, believe me.” 

He broke down my defenses as if they were paper. One dark, unfathomable glance from Alejandro, the notorious Duke of Alzacar, and I was his. It was only later that I realized why he’d seduced me, and I had no choice but to flee.

Nine months on, he’s found me. No matter how my body and my heart react to him, I can never let the duke take our son away from me. But Alejandro will stop at nothing. I just have one card left to play…

 photo goodreads_zpsbfc5d95d.png


 photo c84e18c8-8677-4526-89d4-fbd17c81445a_zpscae30e67.jpg

** I received a copy from Harlequin via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**
*All quotes from eARC and may change in final edition*

First Impression

Late last night I decided to log onto NetGalley and take a look for something new to read. I was really in the mood for something light and full of fluff, this reading slump just doesn’t want to leave! Once I read the synopsis I realized the great potential this book would have and decided to give it a go.

Opening Lines

The gray, lowering sky was falling like a shroud across the old colonial city of San Miguel de Allende when I heard the words I’d feared in nightmares for the past year.”

The Good

I had a feeling this book would have great potential and I was right! I loved the plot, it was just so interesting and kept building and building! I even enjoyed the characters. Lena and Alejandro were two strong main characters and dysfunctional secondary characters Claudia and Edward all kept the story alive. The writing style was definitely my favourite part, I kept trying to tab different parts because there were just so many beautiful quotes! I’ve included a couple throughout my review.

Oleander. I Shivered a little. So beautiful to the eyes. But so poisonous to the heart.
Just like Alejandro, I thought.”

The Bad

  • Nothing I would consider bad.

The In-Between

  • Title – I’m that person that expects the title to match the plot of a book, and this is one that I felt could have been named something different. The title is Uncovering Her Nine Month Secret, yet the really wasn’t MUCH of uncovering Lena’s secret, within the first chapter its solved. Now, there was another secret that seemed the be the focus of the book and I feel like the title should have had more to do with that than Lena’s.
  • On and Off – This book fell flat at some points closer towards the end. I felt like the same level of creativity that was used to start the book was missing when it came to finishing the book.
  • 9 Months Ago – I would have loved if there was a chapter from nine months/a year ago when Lena and Alejandro first meet and how that night really took off for them.

Denial is a beautiful thing. A woman in love can be very good at focusing on the ode and ignoring the thorn-at last until it draws blood.”

Lasting Impression

Overall, Uncovering Her Nine Month Secret was a cute, light, and swoon worthy read! A couple of things I wish played out differently but still an enjoyable read! If you want a romance novel with an innocent heroine, a hero with a secret, and a loveable family I recommend picking this up!

You create your own future, step by step, by being brave. By doing the right thing. By telling the truth. By trying your best.”

 photo 11cf41c7-1e98-4802-b5cb-c4d74927f760_zpsa5a331f4.jpg

4 Stars

 

Thanks for stopping by!

signature1

ARC Review | Wild

 photo WILDTOUR_zps865aafda.png


Wild

Author: Alex Mallory
Series: Standalone
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Retelling
Publisher: HarperTeen
Expected Publication Date: July 8th, 2014
Format: ebook
Source: FFBC
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Kobo | Bookdepository

 photo 43968bbc-d4b3-489f-a604-973a70d99be8_zps5bec76ae.jpg

In this action-packed and timely “Tarzan for the digital age,” Cade, a teen raised in the wilderness, is brought into modern civilization.

The forest is full of secrets, and no one understands that better than Cade. Foraging, hunting, surviving-that’s all he knows. Alone for years, Cade believes he’s the sole survivor. At least, until he catches a glimpse of a beautiful stranger…

Dara expected to find natural wonders when she set off for a spring break camping trip. Instead, she discovers a primitive boy-he’s stealthy and handsome and he might be following her. Intrigued, Dara seeks him out and sets a catastrophe in motion.

Thrust into society, Cade struggles with the realization that the life he knew was a lie. But he’s not the only one. Trying to explain life in a normal town leaves Dara questioning it.

As the media swarm and the police close in, Dara and Cade risk everything to get closer. But will the truth about Cade’s past tear them apart?

 photo goodreads_zpsbfc5d95d.png


 photo c84e18c8-8677-4526-89d4-fbd17c81445a_zpscae30e67.jpg

First Impression

Tarzan retelling? WHAT!! There are many retellings out now a days, but how often do you come across one on Tarzan? I can’t think of any, it’s just so rare! Back in April after reading the synopsis I added it to my 2014 shelf and when I say there was a blog tour for it, well of course I had to sign up! I mean…it’s TARZAN!

 photo tumblr_lmg2k4TCo51qkebpzo1_500_zpsaf39ef4a.gif

The Good

  • More plot, less romance – I loved that this was not a romance driven novel. I mean yes, you have a little bit of romance between Cade and Dara, obviously! But it was more described as two characters being interested and curious about each other. Wild has a solid plot, with romance floating in the background.
  • Writing style – Alex Mallory knows how to write! I found her writing to be very descriptive and has a beautiful lay-out which helped made me feel like I was actually IN the story! I like that she went with third person POV, it allows for readers to see different perspectives and get a real sense of what was happening.
  • Characters – I loved the two main characters; Cade and Dara! Cade, oh Cade. He’s just so adorable! My heart broke for him; being ripped away from the only world he knows and thrown into the world he didn’t know existed is just plain cruel. I just wanted to grab him and hold him and tell him everything was going to be okay!! Now Dara is a strong-willed individual, if she sets her mind to something it’s happening. There’s no way to change her mind. And the secondary characters had a bigger role in this than I expected, but liked! Cade and Dara had great chemistry together and even as individuals they brought a lot to this story.

 photo tumblr_lzlv45Ynre1r34qiso1_500_zps9b24dcf9.gif

The Bad

  • Nothing really that I would consider bad.

The In-Between

  • Pace – I’m a little bit of an impatient individual and when I get to books that have long and slow chapters I tend to lose focus. Wild is a slow pace kind of story that bothered me, but it’s so well written that I didn’t want to DNF it.

Lasting Impression

Overall, Wild was a beautiful modern-day retelling of Tarzan. A little slow at times, but still a solid story! If you love Tarzan, retellings, or in the mood for a contemporary novel I recommend giving Wild a try!

 photo 11cf41c7-1e98-4802-b5cb-c4d74927f760_zpsa5a331f4.jpg

3.5 Stars


 photo 3404dbb5-6554-4151-83c4-1b81b767d1ad_zps22cf7bae.jpg

Tour-Wide Giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

US Only | Must be 13 or older to enter

* A Wild Prize Pack Featuring:*
– a signed, finished copy of WILD
– a copy of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ TARZAN OF THE APES
a DVD (region 1) of Greystoke: Legend of Tarzan of the Apes
– bookmarks
+ a stuffed plush flu microbe. (US Only)

 photo GIVEAWAY_zps0a560f80.png

 photo df37543c-805c-4244-93c9-4fd84e14574e_zpsb0c39b6f.jpg

Alex Mallory is a pen name for YA author Saundra Mitchell. She’s a big fan of reading, history, camping and competitive M&M sorting.

She once crossed a dilapidated train trestle in the middle of the night, 200 feet above the Wabash River, in a futile attempt to prove her love to someone who had no idea she existed.

1) She lived to tell about it. 2) It didn’t work. 3) She doesn’t recommend it.

Links: Website | Goodreads | Twitter

 photo FFBCbadge_zpsddcaf1bc.png
 photo FFBCFOLLOWTOUR_zpse0f4af4a.png

 

 

Thanks for stopping by!

signature1

Review: Emily and the Strangers

Emily and the Strangers Vol. 1 

Authors: Rob Reger, Mariah Huehner, and Emily Ivie (Illustrations)
Series: The Battle of the Bands, Vol.1
Genre: Graphic Novel
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Publication Date: May 27th, 2014
Format: ebook
Pages: 98
Source: Netgalley

 photo 9bb5e8a5-a0b1-449c-a417-c528f02fe37f_zps53f1e3c9.png

In order to win a legendary haunted guitar, Emily is determined to create the most rockin’ song the world has ever known!

But can she do it solo?

Emily isn’t known for playing well with others, but she’s going to have to rely on the help of some strangers if she’s going to succeed on her musical journey to the true heart of rock ‘n’ roll!

Emily the Strange creator Rob Reger teams up with co-writer Mariah Huehner (True Blood, Angel) and artist Emily Ivie (The Locked Maze, Rotsterarsil) for a brand-new, full-color Emily the Strange mini-series full of troublemaking cats, mad science, new friends, and killer guitar riffs!

add-to-goodreads-button31


 photo 4c7c57e9-244a-42fb-abaf-06f54de6e038_zpse7762b12.png

“My mind is a terrible thing to waste. Which is why I cram it with odds, ends and all the best kind of brain junk.”

I have always loved Emily the Strange. I remember back when I was in elementary school I would go to Spencer’s to buy Emily the Strange t-shirts, I’m even 99% that I had a couple of books but I can’t seem to find them.

Three reasons why I love Emily: One, she’s strange (just like me) and strange things are basically normal in her world. Two, she has cats. Three, pretty self-explanatory but she’s Emily. So when I saw this on Netgalley I HAD to read it! Now this isn’t the same Emily that we’ve all seen, and by that I mean that the drawing style is slightly different, but in a good way! The illustrations in this book were INSANE! I kept flipping back and staring at them, I couldn’t stop admiring them.

Emily and the Strangers introduces us to some new characters; Winston, Raven, Willow, and Evan Stranger that come together for a battle of the bands while Emily is being put to the test to see if she can play nice with others. I loved the addiction of new character, they added to the plot and gave me some laughable moments with their bickering. And her cats, omg such trouble makers that you can’t help but giggling over!

Willow: Yes! Come in! You have no idea how happy we are to see you!
Emily: Hold on. How do we know the profess sent her? She could be anyone.
Evan: Did we make her? Or was she always there?
Weston: Dude, don’t. I’m getting a headache.

Overall, Emily and the Strangers was a fast paced and highly enjoyable read! I loved the plot, characters and the illustrations! I can’t wait to read Vol. 2, hopefully it’ll be posted to Netgalley prior to release hint hint, wink wink, nudge nudge!

I give this 4 “zorking” butterflies!

4 Stars

 

Thanks for stopping by!

signature1

Review: Tales from Oz

Tales from Oz

Authors: Dan Wickline, Joe Brusha, Mederdith Finch
Series: N/A
Genre: Graphic Novels, Fantasy
Publisher: Zenescope Entertainment
Publication Date: April 29th, 2014
Format: ebook
Pages: 129
Source: Netgalley
Purchase: Amazon | B&N

 photo 9bb5e8a5-a0b1-449c-a417-c528f02fe37f_zps53f1e3c9.png

Now, the most infamous Oz characters appear in Zenescope’s intense, dark, and daring re-imagining of the Oz mythos.

The mesmerizing and often times frightening origins of the Tin Man, The Scarecrow, Thane the Lion, and a wolf named Toto are collected together in this epic trade paperback.

add-to-goodreads-button31


 photo 4c7c57e9-244a-42fb-abaf-06f54de6e038_zpse7762b12.png2014 seems to be the year of retellings, but most importantly I have come across so many books taking their own spin on Oz and I love it! Tales from Oz is more of a prequel that shows us how each character came to be. I’m glad I decided to read this before reading Grimm Fairy Tales: Oz, I fell like this will help me understand and easily follow the backstory to Tin Man, The Scarecrow, Thane the Line and Toto.

While I’m very new to reading anything from Zenescope, I wasn’t expecting the illustrations to be somewhat sexually explicit. Once you get past that, you’re able to enjoy the amazing detailing in the illustrations and the use of colour to set the tone.

If I were to rate each characters story independently they would be:

Tin Man

“If you have no reason to fight, then you have no reason to be feared.”

The lonely woodsman had nothing to fear for he had nothing to lose, but once he managed to find love the witches took that away from him. This was a cruel story that shows you just how crude the witches can be once they feel like they’ve been betrayed. On a side note: Thora, I do not like you!!

4 “woodchopping” butterflies!

———–

Thane the Lion

I am not the warrior you are, brother. I love you too much to see you die.

This was probably the story I least enjoyed. I was glad to find out Thane’s background and the story of his family, and of course why love was so important to him. But I found I just wasn’t as interested to read about Thane the Lion.

3 “cowardly” butterflies!

———–

The Scarecrow

I’m so sorry, my love. I will love you for eternity. And you will be avenged. This I swear.

Now this was an excellent story! This is tied as my favourite with the story of Tin Man. While each story had gore to it, this one had the most bloodshed of them all, which isn’t why it was my favourite but because I found it the most interesting.

4.5 “vengeful” butterflies!

———–

Toto

She fell that day, beset by Zinna’s malice, and has not stirred since.”

Okay I will openly and honestly say this story confused me. Toto could probably be agreed upon as one of the forgotten characters, so reading the backstory was somewhat interesting but I feel that if they were going to write a back story they should have gone further back to the part in which his master battles the witches.

3.5 “wound licking” butterflies!

Overall, I found Tales from Oz to be a very fast paced and enjoyable read! Now while I put this wasn’t a series, it said Vol. 1 on the cover…so is it safe to assume there might be a Vol.2? Or does Grimm Fairy Tales: Oz serves as “Vol.2”? Either way, I can’t wait to start Grimm Fairy Tales: Oz.

 photo 1e508f82-510a-4900-bc89-1b8de94d90c8_zpsdbd5f365.png

4 Stars

 

 

 

Thanks for stopping by!

signature1