Tag Archives: crime/mystery

4.5 Stars for Fallen From Grace (Spirit of Grace #2) by Adrian J. Smith (AUTHOR INTERVIEW) #FF #Police @adrianajsmith @supposedcrimes

1Title: Fallen From Grace (Spirit of Grace #2)
Author Name: Adrian J. Smith
Publication Date & Length: June 1, 2015 – 260pgs

Synopsis

Parables and riddles can’t undo the confusion Deputy Grace Halling experiences after her close call with death. Each morning she wakes up, puts on a uniform that feels far more like a target, and goes out to enforce the laws and protect the innocent. While her comrades in blue are murdered one by one with each passing month, Grace pushes for a call to action from her Captain. Her worst fear has become a reality.

Grace doesn’t know if she’s next.

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Review
FourandHalfStars

This second book in the ‘Grace’ series continues a few months after Grace is seriously injured in a car accident that was no accident.  Someone is out to kill cops, but no-one will believe Grace when she tries to tell them there is a connection between the recent killings of her colleagues.  Grace becomes even more angry and ill-tempered than before and Amya, her girlfriend, a Police Chaplain, is getting sick of it.
This book deals with the breakdown of Grace and Amya’s relationship as Grace’s behaviour becomes more erratic.  I can certainly understand why Grace becomes so affected – her job seems to be one trauma after another.  She has so much to deal with and much worse and more personal than she could ever imagine.  Amya would have to be a saint to put up with it all though.  She may be a Chaplain but she is only human.
We find out more about Grace’s suspicions over the cop killings and how they may be linked.  I enjoyed the story and the direction it is going in.  There is much more to come and I want to find out so much more!  Grace and Amya’s relationship continues to change and develop and that too has kept me hooked.  I can’t wait to read the next instalment,  ‘Grace through Redemption’,  to find out where this is all leading.
Kitty Kat

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Filed under 4.5 Stars, Author Interview, F/F, Kitty Kat, Review

5, TWO 4, 3.5 and 3 Stars for It Takes Two (Memphis S.W.A.T. #1) by Theresa Hissong #Menage #Erotica @AuthorTHissong

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Title: It Takes Two (Memphis S.W.A.T. #1)
Author Name & Publisher: Theresa Hissong (Torquere Books)
Publication Date & Length: September 23, 2015 – 109 pgs

Synopsis

Twelve years of friendship turns into something more when Eva Porter’s two best friends confess their love for her after a heated night between the sheets. Her only dream over the years had been to be the woman for Max and Sam. Living a ménage lifestyle was new to her, but she knew, deep down, that this was what she needed. Eva soon realizes it will take two men to love her completely.

When a threat to Eva’s life presents itself, Max and Sam step up security around their home to keep Eva from being harmed, but the man who wants her dead will stop at nothing to take her out. The suspect will risk everything, even death, to take Eva away from the two men sworn to protect her.

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Review

FiveStars

It Takes Two was a fantastic short, hot read.  Max and Sam, friends and lovers, help out Eva with car trouble.  Many years later and still friends their relationship develops into more.

For a short book this had a huge punch to it.  There was a decent mystery to the story along with some hot sex.

I found Eva to be a strong independent woman who became a police officer.  Max was the alpha male between him and Sam.  It seemed Max was always in charge,  I loved it.

The story was developed well and the characters were perfect. As this is book 1 I hope we meet more of Max’s swat team in the future.  Loved this book can’t wait for more.

Sherry

FourStars

Eva, Sam and Max were almost instant friends.  Max and Sam were lovers long before they were friends with Eva, but once they were able to wriggle their way in to her life, she was theirs too.  Despite feelings over the years, nobody ever took the first step.

While I liked that the dynamic between the three was friends who love each other, I did find it kind of hard to believe that nobody ever struck up the courage to say anything.  Why did it take Eva’s danger to help Sam and Max realize that they did want that next step?

It seemed almost too complex of a story for such a short book.  It was rushed and at times, felt almost pieced together.

I liked the plot and found that I wanted to know the answers just as much as the characters, but also felt that it was somewhat predictable too.

I honestly don’t know if this series will continue to follow these three or move on to Max’s SWAT members because there is almost no build-up for the next book.

This was a short story, with some hot sex, but lacked something for me.  It was probably due to the short duration of the story.

AvidReader

FourStars

This was an… interesting story.
I liked the plot, but I felt like some crucial details were left out. Like how had things not progressed earlier when all involved were interested and not really trying to hide it.
I really felt that the SWAT side of things had absolutely nothing to do with the book except that one of the members was a SWAT member, which left me a bit disappointed. And some of the other aspects of law enforcement seemed like they aren’t realistic.
I’ve read other books by this author and felt like this wasn’t one of her best. I wasn’t as drawn into the story as much as I’d have liked.
That being said, I didn’t think it was overall bad, just needed some more finesse to the writing and more to the characters to make them meatier and interesting.
Renee

ThreeandHalfStars I liked the storyline in this book, but there were a couple things I had a problem with. This is my first book by Theresa Hissong, and to tell you the truth, I was a little unimpressed by the quality of writing. The book is fairly well plotted, but the writing itself is a bit simplistic for such a prolific author. It seems like there should be more detail, more description, just more. As far as the plot itself, the biggest problem I had was that all three people waited so long to make a move toward each other. The two males are already in a loving relationship when they meet Eva when she’s 16. The story starts about 16 years later. All three have been yearning for a deeper relationship together for years. Now someone is after Eva. I understand that the danger brings all of them together, and allows an opening for “the move” to finally occur. I just don’t understand why they all held back for so many years without a single one of them saying anything. That doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy the book. I did. It was a quick read, the sex scenes were pretty damn hot, and it was interesting enough to keep me reading.

~AmyP

ThreeStar

I picked up this book for two reasons: the world bisexual and the word cop. I love me so bi-peoples and I love me some officers of the law. I was not disappointed in the bisexual aspect, but I was disappointed in the crime. This novella seemed to have an issue deciding if it wanted to be an erotic romance or a crime/mystery.

 

Working with law enforcement for quite a number of years, I was saddened by the lack of research into the cop side of the drama on this one. There were a lot of aspects that were off in it, things that would never happen. But that was all redeemed in the romantic aspect of it.

 

The plot, the overall concept of this novella, is one I loved. It was great, creative, would have been interesting and been a five star book had it been executed well, but it wasn’t. The writing was a bit bland and far more telling than showing. I never connected with the characters (all the men are UFC fighter size, by the way, SPOILER on that one), and Eva, for being a beat cop, had no strength, no jadedness, no independence even though the book stated (that’s right, stated did not show) that she was independent. She was the weakest woman I have read in a story in a very long time.

 

I’m not at all convinced these problems could have been resolved if the novel had been expanded and both plot threads—romance and mystery—had been allowed to come into their own.

 

~AJ

Excerpt

Max left the station with the two files in hand. It was close to mid-morning and the evidence from the storms the night before dotted yards and roadsides on his way back to his property just outside the city limits. Small trees were down and although there was no tornado, there was some wind damage to homes close to his.

Thankfully, it looked like they only lost a few limbs on the large oak trees in the sprawling five acres of his front yard of the property. So, it was no surprise to see Eva and Sam spending their Sunday morning cutting and hauling away limbs to a pile to be burned later.

Max stopped on the long gravel driveway up to the house. Eva was tossing limbs into a small trailer that was being pulled behind one of the four-wheelers they owned. Sam approached Max’s SUV, swiping away dirt from his cheek.

“Hey,” Max said when Sam was close enough to hear him. “Eva doesn’t need to be using that shoulder.”

“Tell her that,” Sam laughed and hooked a thumb over his shoulder. “Stubborn, remember?”

Max noticed how Eva was lifting and huffing with a heavy limb. Her long brown hair was pulled up into a tight ponytail and she was bundled up in jeans, boots and one of the hoodies that Sam had bought for her the day before. After the storm had rolled through, the temperatures dropped quickly and they’d be expecting snow in the next few days.

“I’ll go in and build a fire,” Max said, keeping his eyes on Eva’s small body as she worked. She really was beautiful.

“Okay, we’ll finish up and meet you at the house,” Sam winked.

“Hey,” Max said suddenly, stopping Sam from turning away.

“Yeah,” Sam replied.

“How is she this morning?” Max asked, worried. Would she panic and run?

“Perfect,” Sam looked back at Eva. “She’s absolutely perfect.”

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Filed under 2 Star, 3 Star, 3.5 Stars, 4 Star, 5 Star, AJ, Amy P, AvidReader, Bisexual, F/F, M/F/M, M/M/F, Menage, New Release, Renee, Review, Reviewer, Sherry

NEW RELEASE: 3 stars for Outcast Cowboys by Sarah Masters @PridePublishing #MM #Cowboys #mystery

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Title: Outcast Cowboys
Author Name & Publisher: Sarah Masters — Pride Publishing
Publication Date & Length: August 18, 2015

Synopsis

You can run but you can’t hide. Problems have a habit of following you, even if it’s only inside your head.

Ross decides to start a new life away from the grim belly of London, England, unable to stomach being a cop any longer. He tells himself he’s moving miles away to find himself a bed partner, but he’s lying. He has to. Facing up to the real reason he’s leaving isn’t something he can handle. His last undercover job proved too much—his life was at risk—and if he stays in London he’ll likely end up dead. Nightmares plague him, his subconscious unable to switch the past off. So he moves to a ranch in America, thinking the new surroundings and different lifestyle will help him to heal—and to forget. What he soon realizes is he’s jumping from the frying pan into the fire…

Joe’s passion—that of caring for the horses—is the only thing that keeps him sane. He’s a surly man, and for good reason—a reason he hasn’t told a soul. Folks think he’s mean and unapproachable and suspect him of committing murder. More than once. Locals assume that Joe got let off the hook. Nothing could be further from the truth, but Joe lets people think what they will. He’s done with their speculation and sly looks.

When Ross and Joe meet, tension is rife. The air between them prickles with animosity as well as sexual tension. Both have a past they can’t get over. Both have skeletons in their closets they wish would turn to dust. And both have to make a decision. Can they cast their fears aside and trust each other, or have the terrors they’ve experienced ruined them for love?

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Review

ThreeStar

I struggled with this one.  I think I was expecting Andrew Grey or Ariel Tachna, but this is much grittier.  Not grit as in the struggle to keep a ranch going in a hostile environment – but grit as in family secrets, domestic abuse, homophobia, PTSD, grizzly murders and small-town cover-ups.  Ugly gritty.  And the author doesn’t offer up much hope or easy platitudes.  This is a difficult book.

There is an awful lot going on in a relatively short novel.   Ross leaves his job as an undercover detective in London, answering an advert for a job on an American ranch.  As you do.  I’m sure work visas are easily obtained for unskilled labourers.  In America (I’m not sure we know exactly where?) Ross finds himself working for a family hiding many dark secrets.  And he finds himself falling for a man who just might be the most dangerous member of the family.

Joe has been treated badly by his family since he came out to them.  Allegations are made against him, he is physically harmed and blamed for all of the family’s problems. He is wary of Ross, but inexplicably drawn to the Englishman.  Slowly, as Ross unravels the family secrets, he and Joe find themselves in increasing danger.

There was too much angst in this story for me.  The author exploits every Southern small-town stereotype to create conflict. As a result, the story never really moves past stock characters and cliche stereotypes.  Small towns and the people who live in them are bad; California is safe and its residents are good people.

I’m still not sure about the main characters.  It felt like the author was trying to develop the characters through their respective troubles.  Good characters transcend their troubles with quirks, attractive flaws and endearing characteristics – but for me, neither of these two ever became more than troubled men with difficult pasts.

The story ends after a lengthy time lapse which didn’t work for me.  I wanted the details!  Unusually for an m/m story, or for any romance,  there are limits to Joe and Ross’ HEA.  The end of the book is sad and quite dark.

~Sarah

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AuthorBio

Sarah Masters is one of three pen names I write under. Sarah mainly writes m/m. Natalie Dae writes het erotica, while the third, Charley Oweson, writes thriller/horror/suspense books with no sex.

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5 Stars for Cinder & the Smoke by @geonncannon #FF #historical #crime @Supposedcrimes

cinderfinal

Title: Cinder and the Smoke
Author Name: Geonn Cannon
Publication Date & Length: March 1, 2015 — 201 pages

Synopsis

In nineteenth century New York, safes aren’t living up to their name. A thief so wily, so impossible to capture the police call her “the Smoke,” has been targeting the wealthy. In reality, the Smoke is a woman named Kezia Cyr, a woman born in prison, stolen from her mother, and raised by runaways and pickpockets. When her emotions cause a job to blow up in her face, Kezia’s adoptive family scatters, and she is left to avenge those she’s lost.

The Smoke may finally meet her match in Pinkerton Agent Shelby Button, who earned the moniker “Cinder” for running into a burning building to capture a criminal. Button finds Kezia’s trail and refuses to let her prey go without a fight.

With a decade-old murder to avenge, Kezia will stop at nothing to correct her past mistakes, and Agent Button is willing to trek across the country to bring the phantom Smoke to justice once and for all.

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Review

FiveStars

This very dark novel begins by portraying the brutality of the age, the huge differences in living standards between rich and poor and it has an ominous foreboding for ever lurking in the background.
Kezia from early childhood is faced with growing cruelty and difficult living conditions, she has to learn to be creative, even violent in order to survive. The author conveys this in such a way that despite everything we have sympathy for her and maybe even be in awe of her.
Throughout the novel sexuality is questioned, both by Kezia and by those she comes into contact with. There is a growing feeling of an inevitable escalation of violence and corruption.The introduction of the “Cinder” only confirms the growing uneasiness with the final outcome.
Although not a novel I enjoyed it was a novel that kept me engrossed, the detailed descriptions, the believable characters, the constant fear of what would happen next was very absorbing. The author has obviously researched this era extensively.
My only apprehension was when words such as “nigger” and negroes were used to describe a certain situation and I felt this was not necessary for the otherwise very readable story line.

~Chris

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AuthorBio

Geonn Cannon was born in a barn and raised to know better than that. He was born and raised in Oklahoma where he’s been enslaved by a series of cats, dogs, two birds and one unexpected turtle. He’s spent his entire life creating stories but only became serious about it when he realized it was a talent that could impress girls. Learning to write well was easier than learning to juggle, so a career was underway. His high school years were spent writing stories among a small group of friends and reading whatever books he could get his hands on.

Geonn was inspired to create the fictional Squire’s Isle after a 2004 trip to San Juan Island in Washington State. His first novel set on the island, On the Air, was written almost as a side project to another story he wanted to tell. Reception to the story was so strong that the original story was put on the back burner to deal with the world created in On the Air. His second novel set in the same universe, Gemini, was also very well received and went on to win the Golden Crown Literary Society Award for Best Novel, Dramatic/General Fiction. Geonn was the first male author to receive the honor.

While some of his novels haven’t focused as heavily on Squire’s Isle, the vast majority of Geonn’s works take place in the same universe and have connections back to the island and its cast of characters (the exception being the Riley Parra series). In addition to writing more novels based on the inhabitants of Squire’s Isle, Geonn hopes to one day move to the real-life equivalent to inspire further stories.

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