Unelmoija: The Mindshifter #bookreview #elleboca

First sentence: As I woke up in the strange room I remembered I had a free morning without any tests, class assignments or chores.

About the story: Amy’s gone away to Miami Beach for a girls’ weekend with her friends Krissa and Lilly. But, when Lilly vanishes, it’s up to Amy and Krissa to find her. In doing so, they stumble upon a slaver’s scheme. During their heroics, they end up meeting an unexpected ally. As they realize the seriousness of Lilly’s fate, Amy and gang race against time before their friend is gone for good.

My thoughts: Unelmoija: The Mindshifter is book number two of the Weeia series, and it’s a pretty good one, story-wise. The writing was fast-paced, like all the other novels I’ve read of Elle Boca. Amy’s character has grown fictional-wise and writing-wise, which is a good thing. However, there were some points in the story where I thought she was being a bit strange. I won’t mention it in case of spoilers.

In the first book, The Dreamshifter, I was curious about the kidnappings of Amy and her sister before the story opened. It was brought to our attention out of the blue, never really discussed, except in passing. This time around, we do get to find out where Amy’s sister has been for the past two years, though I still felt something was missing in the story. My main issue with the kidnapping subplot is that the ordeal was treated as if it were perfectly normal for someone to be kidnapped and show up years later. There weren’t enough tears, especially where Amy was concerned. I also wondered, “why did Kat not attempt to reach out to her family?”

Additionally, when they’re searching for their missing friend, Krissa’s ability suddenly develops and she forgets that something serious is going on and starts acting giddy. Granted, it’s rare for her age for abilities to manifest, but her friend is in danger. If it were me, I wouldn’t be too focused on receiving a special ability until my friend was safe.

I like how Amy grew from not having a clue about what Weeia is, to a young woman who embraces who she is, and will use her sacred ability to save someone, no matter the cost to her.

This is only Elle Boca’s second book and I believe she’s still getting her feet wet, finding her voice. While I am enjoying learning about Amy and her abilities, I prefer the Weeia Marshalls series the most. I recommend for readers who enjoy urban fantasy and a fun, light read.

My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Does it interest you? Buy it here!

*For more reviews, visit: Angela Kay’s Books*

A little bit about the author: Elle is the author of the Weeia urban fantasy series about superhumans. The Unelmoija series is set in Miami. In the Garden of Weeia, a novella, is set in Portland, Maine, and her newest Marshals Series is set in Paris, France. Growing up the only child of a monkey mother and a rabbit father she learned to keep herself entertained and spend time reading.

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Retaliation (The Praegressus Project Book 3) #bookreview

  • Title: Retaliation (The Praegressus Project Book 3)Retaliation (The Praegressus Project Book 3) by [Hodges, Aaron]
  • Author: Aaron Hodges
  • Print Length: 222
  • Publication Date: August 22, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy

You always know you’re reading a good book when you’ve finished it in one sitting without realizing it. Such was the case with me and Retaliation, the third installment of Aaron Hodges’ Praegressus Project series. Chris and his band of renegades are still on the run from the government. As to be expected, they are wary of who to trust, but they know they’re going to have to trust someone sometime if they are going to survive the nightmare they’ve been sucked inside.

It’d been a while since I’ve read Renegades, so I couldn’t remember how it ended, but thankfully, as always, we’re fed everything we need to know throughout this third novel. Piece by piece, I’d begun to recall the events of the previous two books. Book three feeds us a lot of action that keeps you flying across the pages, eager for more.

In my opinion, with every book Hodges’ puts out, he gets better in his writing. I do wonder, though how The Praegressus Project can be stretched into a total of five books before it starts to become too many in a series. However, I do love the premise, the action, and the characters, so I care enough to keep reading and find out. I also find that the Chead is an interesting concept. Scary, too. Even scarier that the government is so corrupt that they will stop at nothing to keep the truth behind the Chead a secret—including murder.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

Aaron Hodges

Aaron Hodges was born in 1989 in the small town of Whakatane, New Zealand. He studied for five years at the University of Auckland, completing a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology and Geography, and a Masters of Environmental Engineering. After working as an environmental consultant for two years, he grew tired of office work and decided to quit his job and see the world. Two years later, his travels have taken him through South East Asia, Canada, the USA, Mexico, Central America, and South America.

Today, his adventures continue…

December Contest Time! #Giveaway #Books @SterlingGate @MorcanJames

Hiiiii, All!

I’m excited this week!

Hopefully a good majority of you will remember my review of father/son writing team’s thriller, Silent Fear. If not, check it out HERE!

Now, Lance and James Morcan are offering you a WONDERFUL chance at yet another giveaway! This time, you can have YOUR choice of their books! Love thrillers? Then you have a chance to win Silent Fear. Love historical fiction? Well, tell them you want  World Odyssey. I quite loved Silent Fear, so I’m pretty sure that the rest of their works are amazing!

Hurry up! One lucky winner, one book (They all seem to have high reviews, which is awesome)!

The contest will run from December 18 until December 23. I have the link below each book for you awesome readers and followers to check out the blurbs, reviews and more!

To enter, click RIGHT HERE!

See the source imageSilent Fear (A novel inspired by true crimes) by [Morcan, Lance, Morcan, James]White Spirit (A novel based on a true story) by [Morcan, Lance, Morcan,James]Into the Americas (A novel based on a true story) by [Morcan, Lance, Morcan, James]The Ninth Orphan (The Orphan Trilogy Book 1) by [Morcan, James, Lance Morcan]World Odyssey (The World Duology Book 1) by [Morcan, Lance, Morcan, James]

Silent Fear – genres: crime-thriller, horror, romance, sci-fi

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075HRYTVC/   

White Spirit – historical adventure, romance, action

https://www.amazon.com/White-Spirit-novel-based-story-ebook/dp/B01LWIRH9J/

Into the Americas – historical adventure, romance, action

http://www.amazon.com/Into-Americas-novel-based-story-ebook/dp/B00YJKM51E/

The Ninth Orphan – international thriller, conspiracy, espionage, romance, action

http://amazon.com/dp/B0056I4FKC/

World Odyssey – historical adventure, romance, action

http://www.amazon.com/World-Odyssey-Duology-1-ebook/dp/B00HHVOMO0/

The Killing Ploy #Bookreview

  • Title: The Killing PloyThe Killing Ploy by [Haberman, Steve]
  • Author: Steve Haberman
  • Print Length: 265
  • Publication Date: May 8, 2012
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Suspense, Mystery, Thriller, Espionage

Pablo de Silva is a former CIA tracker and shooter who is being haunted by the memory of his last mission, when he failed to save the lives of a fellow agent and lover. In this present day, he’s been trying to work through his failure, but it isn’t so easy when his colleagues are holding him in such low regard because of such failure. When his former boss calls him home on a new assignment, he quickly begins to realize that he’s fallen into a dangerous web.

The Killing Ploy was an interesting read. For the first half of the story, though, I found myself slugging through. The characters weren’t rounded out as I liked and a lot of the times the dialogue didn’t quite fit who they were as people. And while the scenery was developed wonderfully in the narrative (marvelous job at that. Coming from somewhere that doesn’t travel to exotic places, I felt I was there), there were a lot of times when I felt the sentence was incomplete. For example: She could remember their panicky flight out to the terrace, stumbling down the steep bluff, and struggling up some dunes to her Mercedes. After that, though, a fog as to why they had escaped to RCB.

I can see what the author is saying in the last sentence, but it, like many others, don’t really sit that well with me.

The second half was much better than the first. I can see a better grip on the writing and details. While the dialogue still wasn’t up to par, I found myself getting a little more into the story, wanting to find out how it would end.

Overall Rate: 3 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

Steve Haberman

A University of Texas graduate, Steve Haberman pursued legal studies at UCLA before embarking on a career as a legal assistant. Profitable stock market investments made travel abroad possible, and he has since visited Europe extensively and frequently, including London, Paris, Prague, Berlin, as well as Milan and Budapest. Many of these feature as settings in his two e-book novels. “Murder Without Pity,” a murder mystery with tragic echoes from the past, occurs in Paris. “The Killing Ploy” (with heavy overtones of “fake news” before that was topical) is set partially in several Continental capitals. His two works in progress, “Darkness and Blood,” the sequel to “The Killing Ploy,” and “Winston Churchill’s Renegade Spy” also use foreign locales. He is presently planning another three month trip abroad for research on a fifth thriller, this one set in the post World War II apocalyptic ruin of the German capital.

Unelmoija: The Dreamshifter #bookreview @elleboca

  • Title:  Unelmoija: The DreamshifterUnelmoija: The Dreamshifter (Weeia Book 1) by [Boca, Elle]
  • Author: Elle Boca
  • Print Length: 208
  • Publication Date: November 24, 2014
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction

Amy is Weeia. She doesn’t know much about the Weeia race, only that they are superhuman with special abilities. In Unelmoija: Dreamshifter, Amy is beginning to learn more about her own Weeia ability. As she discovers more about her powers, she learns someone is trying to kill her. To save her life, Amy must rely on a mysterious stranger who both attracts her and repels her, as well as her father she’d never met.

After reading Elle Boca’s Weeia Marshalls series, then reading this book, I can honestly say that she’s grown as a writer. Unelmoija: Dreamshifter is her first novel and also the book that introduces us to the Weeia universe. I liked the idea behind the Unelmoija universe, and I also liked most of the characters. The only thing about Amy that I wasn’t too crazy about was that it seemed as though she was a little too happy-go-lucky. Even in danger, I couldn’t really feel her trepidation. I also felt she struck a friendship with Duncan a little too quickly after deciding that she didn’t trust him. I think it would have been better and more intriguing if Amy and Duncan showed their obvious attraction, but struggled with feelings that were developing.

When I first started Dreamshifter, Amy was acting like normal people do, then the narrative throws in something about a kidnapping of her and her mother, which, as the story progresses, never got fully explained. I had gone back to the very beginning of the book to the table of contents and began to flip through, thinking I may have missed the prologue or something. But, I didn’t, which made me feel as though I was thrown into something I should have already known. Sometimes the way the dialogue was written confused me.

*For example: “I can see your mind is set.” I’d won the first battle. I kept quiet, as the situation was uncertain.*

In that scenario, it’s Duncan who is speaking. Then, in the same paragraph, it jumps into Amy’s first-person narrative. There were a lot of instances about that.

I think this was a decent beginning to the series. It isn’t my favorite, but I did like the premise. And as I said earlier, Elle Boca does grow as a writer. All series needs something to get the ground running, and Dreamshifter does the trick. I would be interested to see where Amy goes now that she’s learned more about Weeia and her powers. Maybe the questions I had in the first book are embellished in the ones after.

Overall Rate: 3 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

River Rising (Carson Chronicles Book 1) #bookreview @johnheldt

  • Title: River Rising (Carson Chronicles Book 1)River Rising (Carson Chronicles Book 1) by [Heldt, John A.]
  • Author: John A. Heldt
  • Publication Date: September 18, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Historical Fiction, Romance, Time Travel

Meet the Carson family. The eldest of five siblings, Adam, comes across a letter written by his mother. In that letter, he finds that his parents, who had disappeared months before, did not actually vanish. Rather, his mother provides him with evidence that she and her husband, found a time portal in which they walked through in search of adventure. But, something went wrong. Now, it’s up to the Carson children: Adam, Natalie, Greg, and twins Caitlin and Cody, to find their parents and bring them home.

This is definitely my favorite of John A. Heldt’s novels. It’s the same in many ways, yet it’s different. It’s the same in a way that we read the adventures the characters have: they travel through time, make friends, fall in love. It’s different because in the previous novels (I’ve only read The American Journey series), which everything ties together in the final book, we learn about different characters with ties of the same professor. Here, it seems as if the series will continue the Carson family in search of the same thing: reuniting their family.

Because of this, we’re left with a cliffhanger, living it open for a second book. This isn’t to say that we’re left hanging. River Rising, full of love, heartbreak, adventure and action, ties almost everything together. It just leaves us eagerly waiting to continue the journey.

As usual, the writing is engaging and keeps us on our toes. My only grievance is the dialogue. Having read another series by the same author, I’ve come to be familiar with the same style in the dialogue, when I wish it would be different. Here’s an example. Throughout this book, and the previous series, the dialogue is similar to this (this is not necessarily the exact dialogue):

“I have something to give you,” Adam said.

“What is it?”

“I’ll show you,” Adam walked inside the house, then returns with a box. “I want you to have this.”

Or…

“They didn’t,” Hank said. “They didn’t tell me much of anything.”

In the first example, my thought is that if you’re going to give someone something, you don’t need to tell them you’ll show them. A “allow me a second to retrieve it” would have sufficed, and to me seem more realistic. The second example is that there is quite a bit of repetition in the dialogue. Normally, this wouldn’t bug me, however, the same happened throughout the previous five novels I’ve read. And with both the future characters and past characters doing it, it leaves little room for character growth.

However, the dialogue issue aside, I did truly love the story. I love how the author gradually includes real-life tragedies into the narrative. My eyes refused to leave my Kindle as I read the ending. Although some things were predictable, I did find several shocking moments.

I look forward to learning more about the Carson family and following them onto their next adventure as they search to reunite.

Overall Rate: 5 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

John A. Heldt

John A. Heldt is the author of the critically acclaimed Northwest Passage and American Journey series. The former reference librarian and award-winning sportswriter has loved getting subjects and verbs to agree since writing book reports on baseball heroes in grade school. A graduate of the University of Oregon and the University of Iowa, Heldt is an avid fisherman, sports fan, home brewer, and reader of thrillers and historical fiction. When not sending contemporary characters to the not-so-distant past, he weighs in on literature and life at johnheldt.blogspot.com.

Silent Fear #bookreview @SterlingGate @MorcanJames

  • Title: Silent FearSilent Fear (A novel inspired by true crimes) by [Morcan, Lance, Morcan, James]
  • Author: Lance and James Morcan
  • Print Length: 708
  • Publication Date: September 21, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Thriller, Mystery, Suspense

Wow! This is definitely one heavily involved book! Silent Fear is based on a True Crime that took place in Gallaudet University between 1980 and early 2000s. In the book, not only does Detective Valerie Crowther has to deal with solving a series of murders inside London’s university for the deaf, but she ends up quarantined after one of the students falls victim to the Monkey Flu. The good thing is the killer is looked in the school as well. The bad thing is that there are more than 400 suspects that Valerie must weed through.

I felt the characters and the setting really shined. I truly liked Crowther. She’s a strong woman who cares deeply for those around her, whether or not she wants to admit it. She was once married to Chief Superintendent Mark Bennett and as a reader, it was obvious that they really cared for one another. The only thing I didn’t care for was the continuous mentioning that Bennett was Crowther’s ex. I was reminded too many times within the narrative and the dialogue. The supporting characters were interesting and kept the story moving along.

The writing was tight. We’re given a lot of information (more than 400 pages worth), but keeps you intrigued and wanting more. In fact, I had misplaced my iPad during the course of this reading and after the initial sadness of losing my iPad, I became disappointed that I couldn’t finish the book. I had a PDF copy given to me by the authors, so it wouldn’t have worked on my Kindle. Thankfully, I did find my iPad and sped through the story. I couldn’t put it down.

Packed with drama, suspense, action and surprises lurking around every corner, I definitely think this is worth the read for anyone loving thrillers and/or British crime novels.

Overall Rate: 5 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

The Silver Horn Echoes: A Song of Roland #bookreview

  • Title: The Silver Horn Echoes: A Song of Roland
  • Authors: Michael Eging and Steve Arnold
  • Print Length: 334
  • Publication Date: July 22, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback, Hardcover
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Mythology, History, Historical Fiction

After Roland learns of a new threat to the Frank Kingdom, he must fight his way to victory and to protect King Charles, who happens to be his uncle, the brother of his mother. Additionally, Roland must find a way to bring to justice, the murderer of his father.

First off, I have to be honest and say I don’t usually read or even watch any kind of war stories. Secondly, I have to be even more honest and say wow! This book held my attention from the time I started reading until I finished. There was so much going on…however, not in the way it was confusing. As I read, I became so engrossed with the characters. I knew who I liked and I knew who was evil. Roland was a young man and you can see how he grew as time passed. Amidst the death, destruction and betrayal that came with the war, Roland and his company held onto their Christian faith, which I loved to read most of all.

The narrative was so descriptive, I could almost smell the blood, taste the dirt and hear the clatter of sword against sword in my mind’s eye. It was as if I was there. I started out as taking notes of what I liked and didn’t like, but in the end stopped because I could pause long enough. As it was, I had to force myself to stretch out my reading because I wanted to enjoy every minute.

Was there anything I didn’t like? I can’t remember it because I was too engrossed in the story, the relationship, the whole shebang.

Although most books I read these days are from my Kindle app, I certainly wouldn’t mind to one day purchase a hard copy. This is an epic tale that would be fun to read on a cold day sitting by a fire…in my opinion.

The authors deserve every single praise they get for the making of this book. I certainly can’t remember loving a book so much.

Here is an interesting bit of trivia I learned from one of the authors: the cover artist hand painted the cover to Song of Roland. He’s an artist in LA who has done work for D.C. Comics.

Overall Rate: 5 out of 5 stars

Smells Like Weeia Spirit #bookreview @elleboca

  • Title: Smells Like Weeia SpiritSmells Like Weeia Spirit (The Weeia Marshals Book 3) by [Boca, Elle]
  • Author: Elle Boca
  • Print Length: 350
  • Publisher: Poyeen Publishing
  • Publication Date: March 24, 2016
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy

Marshal Danni Metreaux is back with handsome Sebastien Poyager and this time they have to uncover several mysteries that intertwine with one another. Beginning with an incident at the Académie Superieur de Goin, Danni and Sebastien soon realize that something deeper is at play when more and more Weeia begins acting strangely.

As always, Danni is independent, snarky, strong-willed, and likable. I found her even more so in this book since she has finally settled into her life as a Weeia marshal in Paris. In the beginning, we see how much of a kind heart she has when she assists a family in need although it goes against regulations. Her independent attitude does change, as it would for many women, the more she becomes involved with her boyfriend, Iaen.  Sebastien is a definite worthy friend to have…he’s smooth talking, handsome and loyal to his family and friends.

If you’re worried about reading the third book in the series, having not read the first two, don’t, because within the dialogue and narrative, all the things you need to know will be explained. However, I found several unnecessary repetitions about what Weeia marshals do, or who a character is…I’d skim over because I’d remember it from earlier in the same story.

My main problem with this book isn’t even the plot point…it was Danni’s relationship with Iaen. They meet in the second novel, Weeia on My Mind, and quickly fall for one another. As I read through the passages including Iaen, I found him too…perfect. It would have been nice to have a little bit of annoyance from Iaen. After all, several times, Danni has to bail on him when he’s planning something special. Sure, it’s her job, but, still. The mysterious Iaen we met in the second book is all smiles and understanding every single time Danni runs off.

Some of the dialogue, or even the narrative, can be a bit cheesy for my tastes and not really fit the characters I’ve come to know, but the story behind it is still an enjoyable read for any fantasy fan.

Overall Rate: 4 out of 5 stars

Biography

Elle Boca

Elle is the author of the Weeia urban fantasy series about superhumans. The Unelmoija series is set in Miami. In the Garden of Weeia, a novella, is set in Portland, Maine, and her newest Marshals Series is set in Paris, France. Growing up the only child of a monkey mother and a rabbit father she learned to keep herself entertained and spend time reading.

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