Review: Conversion by Katherine Howe

dd0188081c1c4d616421d117d5f437bbThe history nerd in me loves anything to do with the Salem witch trials. The book lover in me loves historical fiction combined with a bit of fantasy. This latest book by Katherine Howe fits the bill on both ends.

It’s the story of Colleen and her friends, seniors at a prestigious girls’ prep school. They’re already under immense pressure from AP courses, GPAs, and the college admission process. And then comes another level of stress as several of the girls become afflicted with some strange syndrome. Hair loss, twitching, rambling incohesive speech…it’s all there and nobody can seem to figure out what’s causing it. Is it environmental? Stress? Mental/emotional? Or is something more sinister at work?

Part of the appeal of this book for me was how the author shifted back and forth between the present day story and the early 1700s during the actual Salem witch trial period. We’re given a glimpse into the hysteria of that era and encouraged to make a connection to the current story. This is a good story that kept me guessing as to what was really happening. An afterword by the author provides some insight into what inspired her to write this book. Grab this one for a great read, just in time for Halloween!

~Thalia

Buy It Now: Conversion

Review: The Tortilla Curtain by TC Boyle

*1I have to think about this book a bit….but off the top of my head I really didn’t like it. It seemed to me that the characters started off perhaps being ignorant, but they weren’t racist….by the end of the novel it seemed that all sides had turned so racist. There was little hope for anyone….not from page one and certainly not on the last page either….I kept waiting for someone…ANYONE to do the right thing….but it never happened. Yes, one can say that bit at the end….but I disagree….I think it was reflex and something that happened without thinking….it seemed that anytime a character took the time to think about their circumstances that it never ended positive. Only America seemed to think things out and look for the positive….but life certainly wore that poor lady down, didn’t? If Candido had time to think at the end, I believe he would not have reacted as he did…that’s right….I think he simply reacted to the situation…

Now having said all of that, where does it leave us? It seems to me that the nature of how the media portray these things really is part of the problem. Sure…just about every one can agree that children are born colour blind. They don’t see other races, they only see other humans….but think about how the media has portrayed immigrants in the last ten years. Is there any positive reported? How long does someone listen to negative reports day in and day out about abuse before they see only that? How long before someone that is judged day in and day out actually become what others automatically judge them to be? It was obvious that many of the characters in this novel didn’t start out as they did….others influenced their actions and ultimately changed their minds about how they perceived someone simply by the colour of their skin….

How long before you and I stop taking every thing we are told by the media at face value and actually step outside and talk to our neighbors? How long before we cross the street, not to avoid someone, but to actually help that person of a different colour? Just as others can change our perception of someone wrongly….we also have the power to change, not only our own, but also someone else’s perception….

Don’t let the negative be the guiding force in your life….

Until next time…

Urania xx

Buy it now The Tortilla Curtain by TC Boyle

Review: Reaper’s Stand, by Joanna Wylde

01rea I gotta be honest, sometimes I didn’t like Picnic. His wife died 6 years ago and seemed to be shooting for the title of world’s biggest manwhore. Seriously. In all of the other books, he is seen screwing everything in sight. Women who were his daughters’s age all the way up to his own age. He didn’t discriminate. But, on the flip side, he loved his daughters and his MC chapter fiercely. He would protect all of them, with his life.

“We like taking care of our women. You don’t let me help you, the other boys’ll make fun of me and then I’ll have to cry. Are you trying to make me cry, London?”

By the time I got to the end of Devil’s Game, I was totally on Team Picnic. I needed his book like yesterday. I so wanted him to find his love.

London is the cleaning lady who catches Picnic’s eye. She is busy raising her cousin’s special needs daughter and hasn’t had time for dating in six years. But when Picnic sets his eyes on her, she is caught. At first she tries to stay far from him, but the chemistry is undeniable and she’s sucked in. Honestly, I totally forgot they were older characters half the time. Some of the scenes were super saucy. But I loved them.

“Take something off, because otherwise I’m going to start ripping things.”

*fans face*

Exerpt:
I heard voices as I approached the door, which was open a crack. (The frame had swollen up last winter and never quite gone back to normal, so you really had to fight to close it all the way. It was sand- wiched on the repair list between fixing the car and replacing the oven.)

“Your cousin deserves better than this,” I heard Hayes saying, and I couldn’t help but smile. Glad someone noticed my efforts. “If she’s smart, she’ll kick you out.”

“She’ll never kick me out,” Jess declared, and her voice sounded a little smug. A little slurred, too . . . Had she been drinking? Probably. “She’d feel guilty. She’ll always take care of me because she has to—you don’t know shit about us.”

He snorted.

“You think she takes care of you out of guilt?” he asked. “Nope— she loves you, although I can’t quite decide why. You need to figure out what you want to do with your life, because you can’t just drain her dry forever. Sooner or later she’ll be done with you.”

His words sounded so close to my own thoughts it was almost creepy. It also made me feel guilty, because the statement was so cold and hard. Not to mention true.

“It’s none of your business.”

“London is my business, little girl,” he said, and his tone was anything but nice. “I have plans for her, and they don’t include her crying over your bullshit. Don’t piss me off.”

And right there is when I knew Picnic was going to be one of my favorite MC guys. I mean, c’mon, he’s a no nonsense, straight talker type of guy. If he wants you, you better just hold on for the ride.

We even catch a few glimpses of past characters and one of the main stories is quite sad. It totally broke my heart. This book also seems to set us up for a couple of future books as well. I am seriously addicted to these MC guys!! Bring on the next one!!

~Melpomene

Buy Reaper’s Stand (Reapers Motorcycle Club Book 4)

Get caught up with the rest of the guys.
Reaper’s Property (Reapers Motorcycle Club Book 1)

Reaper’s Legacy (Reapers Motorcycle Club Book 2)

Devil’s Game (Reapers Motorcycle Club Book 3)

Review: The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

*1If every book read like this for me, I would seriously find a job that I could hide behind a counter and read all day….This book nourished my soul. It was perhaps the most beautifully written book I have ever encountered. It read like pure poetry that seemed to be written especially for me. A lover’s gentle caress that was so intimate that you know it was for meant for you alone. So deeply felt that it must have been written in the stars long before I even existed. This is a book that I have enjoyed so much that I am hesitant to read the second book in the series. If I were 10 years younger, or not so jaded, i would not hesitate to pick up book two….but life has taught me well…I know that oftentimes what we become enamored with often fails us in the end…perhaps is really is better to remember a perfect moment in time instead of trying to pursue it and have reality slam you in the face….yep….I know….I know….but this book ended perfectly for me….so many could be stand alone books are ruined with authors trying to “do the right” thing…I couldn’t bear it if this perfection were ruined…sigh…..

After finishing this book a second time, I can’t say enough about the mystery that resides within this novel….It’s so easy to fall in love with almost every character in the pages as well….I find it hard to believe that I could love this book any more than I did the first time I found myself lost within it’s pages….but it’s true…I love it even more now…..such a great story….I’m still afraid to continue on with the story in the other books that follow….

Until next time…

Urania xx

Buy it now The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Review: Virgin by Radhika Sanghani

*viso ummmm….I appreciate this book, because honestly, it’s the first book I’ve actually been able to read in months without actually forcing myself to pick it up and finish it.

However, I can’t decide if I like it or not….I see where it could have actually been a very good book. It just fell short in so many places. The main character just felt forced. The humour felt forced. All I could think of though out the entire book was that I was pretty thankful that I never had a friend that was so obsessed with her virginity…or better yet….so obsessed with *herself*…..Okay….let me rephrase that….of course as young girls we were all obsessed with our sexual journey to a certain point…however, I like to think that we weren’t so self-absorbed with it to the extent that nothing else mattered in our lives….and I should hope that those that made it to the age of 21…well….I certainly hope that they wouldn’t have still been so focused on it….

I suppose I am just old-fashioned without considering myself old fashioned….by that I mean…well….I guess I have issues with sexual relations with people who you aren’t exclusive with and have no intent to be so….I suppose I also have issues with simply going out with multiple partners whilst having sexual relations with them…..

hey ho…I’m not passing judgement….I’m just saying I personally have issues with it and I really can’t relate to it….so perhaps I am not the best person to rate this book….

I’m not a prune…I’ve enjoyed books where there might be a love triangle….I understand people can be confused….I suppose I don’t even have problems with people have multiple partners if that’s what they want….I guess I just have issues with people not putting a higher worth on something that can be so intimate. Don’t misunderstand me…I’m not just referring to the main character here…This wasn’t just a one person trait here…it was multiple characters….

And therein lies the rub….

That’s why this book wasn’t as wonderful as it could have been for me….it wasn’t the actions of the characters that bothered me…..it’s how those actions made me feel about how they valued themselves….or actually a lack of value. It cheapened the entire book for me. They were so occupied with themselves that they often overlooked what it meant to others….they selfishly took and then became offended when others seemed to be doing the exact same thing….if what you’re concerned with in life is superficial and what you offer others is also done only for what you can get out of them and not what it can mean to someone….well….don’t be surprised if you get the same type of behaviour in return….just saying…

Until next time…

Urania xx

Review copy provided by Edelweiss for an honest review

Buy it now Virgin by Radhika Sanghani

Review: Field of Prey (Lucas Davenport #24) by John Sandford

lucasI think I love his books more with each new release….I’ve been in a massive book slump…nothing holds my attention….but this did….and the ending….I love Davenport so much….I love that he is flawed, but his heart is not….I love that he faces moral and ethical dilemmas head on…..doing what he knows will allow him to sleep at night….even if it costs him something somewhere else down the line….and never putting his job before people…..those close to him, or just those he encounters for a short time….

I marvel at Sandford….an author that has kept me engaged for 20 plus years and more in love with a series now than I was with at the start….I also love that he doesn’t feel the need to make every thing nice and neat and wrapped in pretty paper…..his novels often get messy…and end messy….but that’s to be admired, not shunned…..

I hope Sandford is around for many more years to come…..still a favourite after all these years….

Until next time…

Urania xx

Buy it now Field of Prey by John Sandford

Review: Devil’s Game(Reapers MC #3) by Joanna Wylde

01dev

“‘Love’ is a word that doesn’t mean a damned thing to me. ‘Em,’ though? That’s a word that means everything to me.”

Synopsis
Liam “Hunter” Blake hates the Reapers MC. Born and raised a Devil’s Jack, he knows his duty. He’ll defend his club from their oldest enemies—the Reapers—using whatever weapons he can find. But why use force when the Reapers’ president has a daughter who’s alone and vulnerable? Hunter has wanted her from the minute he saw her, and now he has an excuse to take her.

Em has lived her entire life in the shadow of the Reapers. Her overprotective father, Picnic, is the club’s president. The last time she had a boyfriend, Picnic shot him. Now the men in her life are far more interested in keeping her daddy happy than showing her a good time. Then she meets a handsome stranger—a man who isn’t afraid to treat her like a real woman. One who isn’t afraid of her father. His name is Liam, and he’s The One.

Or so she thinks.

I don’t know what it is, but MC books are becoming my new favorite. They have a great deal of excitement and things you’d normally not see in every day life. Some things will make you cringe. Some things would make you smile. Heck, some things will make you blush! They have their own set of rules and you don’t go against those rules or people could get killed. But one rule you should try and follow is never falling for an opposing MC. Life will become a bit more crazy and you may be forced to choose.

Em is so sick of being looked upon as the little sister, needing protection 24/7. She wants to be her own person and if that means leaving, then she would do it.

When Em meets Liam, she thought he was perfect. He was sweet and listened to her vent about her “family”. He was always there for her. But she had no idea who the real Liam was. But once she finds out, her life will never be the same.

Liam knew he wanted Em, from the first time he saw her. He was determined to make her his. But life doesn’t always go that smooth. But he tried and tried to make it smoother for her. He was really sweet when he wanted to be. ANd on the flip side, he could make her blush with just a few words.

Talk about Chemistry. Wowzers. Hot, hot, hot, with a splash of dirty. Just the way like our bad boys. A few scenes in here had me blushing!! It was a very saucy book.

And the last glimpse we get, in the book?? Yeah, now I want to read it NOW!!! I am totally sucked in.

~Melpomene

Buy Reaper’s Property

Buy Reaper’s Legacy (Reapers Motorcycle Club)

Buy Devil’s Game (Reapers Motorcycle Club)

Preorder Reaper’s Stand (Reapers Motorcycle Club)

Logo2 (1)