Monday, August 18, 2014

Review: The Promise

The Promise
The Promise by Kristen Ashley

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

There are no words for me to explain the awesomeness that is Kristen Ashley! Anytime I pick up a book of hers, I know that I am going to love it.
Benny and Frankie appeared briefly in Cal & Violet's story, but there was a lot left out. Francesca (Frankie) dated Vinnie Bianchi for years. She stuck by him when he was failing at several get rich quick schemes, and when that fell through he joined his Uncle Sal in the Chicago mob. After his death, the Bianchi family blamed Frankie for his downfall. Losing her boyfriend was devastating, but losing his family at the same time made it worse. When Frankie gets shot helping Violet, Benny decides he's done placing the blame where it doesn't belong. Unfortunately Frankie has decided she is done paying for another persons sins. She has already made plans to leave Chicago, and as soon as she recuperates she's gone. Benny has other plans for Frankie, now and in the future.

The Bianchi's are at the hospital daily trying to mend the fence with Frankie. She pretends to be asleep every time they come in, and that goes over with everyone, except Benny. On the day she's released, he picks her up without her permission, but recovering from a gunshot wound takes the fight out of anyone. He takes care of her, and is really sweet about it. Frankie eventually comes around, and enjoys spending time with Benny, but is still planning to leave. She says she doesn't want anything more than friendship, but they both know that's not true. It really comes down to the fact that she doesn't want to risk losing him, or his family again if things go wrong. She ends up freaking out, and leaving to Indianapolis to start her new job. Benny told her she could come back to him when she changes her mind. While down there she ends up involved in an office scandal. The pharmaceutical company she works for is getting ready to release a new drug that they have a lot of money invested in. When she and a few co-workers find out that there are some problems with the medicine in a small percentage of people, and that the main boss, and another boss are planning on releasing it anyway she has to stop it. Somehow Sal and his goons, and the Nightengale team all get involved. They do end up getting the information and turning it over, but not before a small scare. Frankie moves back to Chicago with Benny, and is even able to get her receptionist Tandy on the job with her. She and Benny get married, and end up having three kids, Alessandra, Donovan, and Joseph. Cal & Violet also have their daughter Angie, and two more boys Ben & Sam. Right before coming back to Chicago, Frankie was hanging out with Cheryl & Feb at Feb's bar. Cheryl is looking for a man, and Benny is really sweet to tell her to smile more, because if she shows the person she is to her girls to a man, she will find a good one. She's in love with Detective Garrett Merrick, but he doesn't see her like she wants him to. Their book is next, so apparently he does end up seeing Cheryl.

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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Review: Breathe

Breathe by Kristen Ashley

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I was given a free copy of Breathe in exchange for an honest review.

Kristen Ashley is my favorite author by far, and that is because everything she writes is pure fraking gold! My boys went to a friends last night, and what did I do?? I stayed up until 4am bawling my eyes out like a big dork so I could finish Breathe!
We have heard a little bit about Chase and Faye in the previous Colorado Mountain books. Faye is the sweet, shy, pretty town librarian. Chase is the son of a corrupt business man, local town hero, and one smoking hot cop. The town of Carnal is in the process of cleaning things up, after the the corruption that was the police department is no more. I did get a little annoyed with Faye's geek speak, but I'm sure I was feeling the same exasperation as Chase. =)

Chase was blackmailed into marrying the town whore, Misty when he had the choice of marrying her, or have his mother (who is not mentally stable) be told of his fathers sick side kink. Misty was killed when she bought off more than she could chew with the local bad guys. Faye has been in love with Chase since she was 16, and would give anything for him to notice her. When he finds her at the sight of the murder, he questions why she was there and then is pretty much an asshole, in the classic good guy, "let's scare her off to keep her safe" way. She persists, though she doesn't reveal her reason for being there in the middle of the night. Faye is not only quiet, but a major geek. She and her two online friends are convinced they can solve the murder, and make Chase notice her once and for all. When Faye notices that a very young, obviously mistreated/ abused child comes in the library, even more abused than normal, she makes it her mission to find out what's going on with him. He is scared to death, and runs away, but she and Chase decide to leave him a few essentials by the library return bin. As time progresses Malachi eventually starts returning their notes, and asking for things he needs, such as a sleeping bag. When a week goes by, and Malachi hasn't shown to collect his new things, they both begin to worry. Chase sets his childhood friend Deck on him, and eventually they find him. (Let it be known, I think it's Decks turn to find him a woman.) When they find him it's worse than they dreamed, he is living in a barely standing shack, with only the sleeping bag, a few rags, and some books. His arm is broken, his leg is mangled from being caught in a trap, hands bloody from freeing himself and barely alive after being in that predicament a week. They get him to the hospital, but are worried that for some reason after three weeks he has yet to speak. He knows how, is very intelligent, but for some reason won't communicate beyond paper, pen, and nods. Malachi is finally able to rescue his little sister Rebecca from the crazy lady that has held them hostage for three years. She saw their mother, a recent widow, assumed she was an unmarried sinner, and after killing her she kidnapped the kids. Eventually the kids were returned to their grandparents, but not before forming an unbreakable bond with both Chase and Faye.

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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Review: A Silent Prayer: A Prayer Series I

A Silent Prayer: A Prayer Series I
A Silent Prayer: A Prayer Series I by Sam A.

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was given a free copy of A Silent Prayer in exchange for an honest review.

I was a little apprehensive when I started this book, as it isn't the type of book I normally read. It took me a while longer to get through it than normal, but there were parts of it that sucked me in. There are several reasons I didn't rate this book higher than three stars. First, the language is stilted, as if the author is fluent in English but maybe not her first language. It's more formal, and doesn't flow naturally. Second, I just didn't love the characters. Raina is very religious, and takes her Muslim faith seriously. Her moods are so unpredictable, that some of the time I felt lost. While Adam is a G rated Christian Grey. They should probably both see a psychiatrist, because neither of them are stable. There are several points in the book, that I thought might be somewhat super-natural, but it was never confirmed, denied, or even explained. The entire book is one big build up, to an ending that doesn't happen, at least in this book.

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Friday, August 1, 2014

Review: Silver Shadows

Silver Shadows
Silver Shadows by Richelle Mead

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Richelle Mead sucked me in with her VA series years ago, and I've read everything she has written. Bloodlines is a spin-off of the Vampire Academy series, featuring Sydney Sage, the Alchemist responsible for covering up the existence of Vampires, Rose & Lissa in particular.
Silver Shadows starts out with Sydney still stuck in an isolation cell, and held captive by the Alchemist. Adrian is going out of his mind trying to find her, but he can't even reach her in a dream. Using so much spirit is weighing heavily, and Adrian's number one vice is too tempting. Sydney just hopes she can survive until Adrian finds her. After being betrayed by her family, the Alchemist will stop at nothing to break her will, even if that takes breaking her body and mind.

Sydney goes through unimaginable abuse at the hands of her Alchemist leaders. In their minds she is tainted for allowing one of those filthy creatures to touch her. She spends two months in solitary confinement with no clothes, shower, or even light. She finally decides that she is going to have to play along if she ever hopes to escape. When they bring her into the general population with other rogue alchemist she learns her transgressions are even too much for her fellow captives. Luckily Duncan befriends her in art class, but he warns her he won't be able to get too friendly outside of their class. She eventually learns that the sleeping gas they were pumping into the solitary cells, is still present in her new room. Her roommate Emma is straight as an arrow, or so she thinks at first. Emma's sister was releases from re-education, and messed up again. They are taking their time to make sure that when Emma leaves she won't mess up again. Adrian is sinking into spirit induced depression without his meds, but he can't take them and still be able to search for Sydney in her dreams. He turns to drinking to help dull the effects, but it's eventually too much for him. Jill calls his mother, and asks her to bring him back to court. While at court Adrian hangs out with Nina, another spirit user he knows. He is trying to drink his pain away, and she eventually confuses his friendship for something more. Emma reveals to Sydney she can help her, and tells her how it is they pump gas into the room. One of the other girls causes a distraction, while she takes off the ceiling tile, and stops the pipes up with a sock. The first night she is able to dream, she is disappointed that Adrian doesn't come to her. The girls that helped her are more than disappointed when they find out it was for nothing. Once Nina comes onto Adrian, he realizes that he has been wallowing in his misery, and decides to head back. When searching the next time he finds her, and they're able to discuss the things they need to. Marcus the number one most wanted Alchemist, Adrian, and a few others all find out where the re-education center is, and break Sydney and the other prisoners out. Sydney and Adrian decide to leave them since she knows it's her they will be coming after. They don't get far before the Alchemist are on their tail, and they come really close to being recaptured. Adrian comes up with the bright idea that they should get married, because as his wife the Moroi community would be forced to protect her. Once they make it to the court, the Moroi, the Alchemist, and Adrian's family are all waiting. The Alchemist are furious when Lissa refuses to hand over Sydney, and are eventually escorted out. Adrian's father is pissed that Adrian is serious about the marriage, and not just using it to keep Sydney safe. They finally get to bed that night, only to be woken a short time later, and told that Jill is missing. As the Queen's only living relative, without knowing her whereabouts, the Moroi can move to dethrone Lissa. They are only one month shy of changing the law that requires the Queen to have at least one relative, but they may be too late.

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