Rich & Sexy: An Alpha Male Billionaire Romance Collection by Sass Green

Summary

Billionaire Nick Drago’s never had a woman whisper “no.” But sassy Nina Brown refuses to shriek “yes!” – not without a ring.

Gorgeous trust fund heir Beck Marks’ plans don’t include a woman. Not until he’s mesmerized by sexy Mandy Lane, whose scandalous “tell-all” podcast is the talk of the town.

Two irresistible billionaires. Two dynamic young women. And a sizzling collection of sensual indulgences behind the scenes of Manhattan’s rich and famous.

Amazon

Overall

The writing was interesting and it had a great start. I was really invested quickly with Mandy and wanted to see how far down the rabbit hole she’d go. Just when I thought things were picking it, everything shifted. In the summary it talks about two women, but there is a third woman at the end just thrown in. I didn’t like all the chapters/stories but overall they were engaging. It’s a series of sexual encounters with limited context that ends up feeling like scattered puzzle pieces with no real definition.

If you like stories that have a beginning but no discernable end, these are for you. Just not for me. They felt like trailers or snapshots of future books. If that’s the case then great! These hit the mark. Unfortunately there is nothing clearly indicating that so instead I was just left wanting some sort of closure or actual plot that moved the characters forward. Which made very few of the characters (particularly the males ones) have any life to them. Lots of potential, just didn’t hit the mark.

Rating

2.5 stars (rounded up)

Great start that just went nowhere…or perhaps everywhere…

Where did I get it?

Kindle Unlimited

Trickling Sands by Jerrod Fasan

Summary

Two spouses, Richard and Serene awake to a morning of uncanny feelings and to add to their unease, they soon discover their six-year-old son Mark is nowhere to be found. Despite their numerous attempts of searching top and bottom throughout their home, there is no trace of their son. After searching, Serene and Richard finally locate him in his favorite hide-n-go-seek spot in the basement. Unfortunately, they also find themselves submerged in an unspeakable nightmare. Longtime friend Garett and his colleagues of the Welder Viller Police Department seek to get to the bottom of the grim misfortune. Garett’s relentless endeavors to acquire answers are fueled by the pursuit of justice and to find healing within his subdued heart. Emotional confrontation and suspicion, eventually leads to the answer he desires. Though after obtaining the answers he so desperately seeks, it shepherds more sorrow and pain, than all the other events leading up to it.

Plot/Characters

This novel started out great, excellent hook, an interesting murder mystery. I really enjoyed the start of the novel, it really had this budding potential. However, curiosity more then anything kept me going after that. I liked Richard, but Garett was a little hard to like. Many of the supporting characters, except for Aunt Laurel and Mark, were pretty flat. There was little life in them and that made it hard to connect. What was worse, there was head hoping throughout.

Overall

The writings main issue was it told the story rather then showed the story. This meant that every scene and action was robotic. The overall message of the story (which I won’t say more and risk ruining anything) was excellent and worthwhile. I am not sure I liked the ending/outcome after all that build up, but I could see why the author went in that direction. I’d actually started to suspect at one point this might be the conclusion, but the author did good keeping it going until the big reveal. The setting was difficult to visualize and the police procedurals felt very fictional, which made it even more difficult to grasp onto. The ending, much like the middle, stretched out too long and could have easily been wrapped up in a single chapter instead of multiple. Which is surprising considering it was only 99 pages. That being said the story kept me reading because I ‘had to know’ so the tight suspense and promise of resolution was pretty well done overall.

Rating

2.5 stars (rounded up)

Interesting plot, great message, and mediocre writing.

Where did I get it?

Kindle Unlimited

Little Miss Hap by Zerry Greenwood

Summary

When Salina Hackett fell out of the stagecoach at Captain Stetson’s feet, he never imagined the turmoil she would unleash in his life. Despite their growing attraction, Mark had no intention of risking his military career for this bit of trouble wrapped in cotton and lace. Unfortunately, the moment he realized he wanted to spend his life with her, Salina vanished, and he received a transfer. Was Sargent Hackett’s spitfire daughter lost to him for good?
Salina Hackett, dubbed Little Miss Hap by the Cavalry, spent her life doing as she pleased, until the day the beautiful Irish army brat entered Fort Salubria. Captain Mark Stetson with his piercing stare and handlebar mustache stirred in her a desire to leave behind her foolish past. Regrettably, the death of her father meant Salina no longer had a home with the military, while Cold-Stone Stetson’s indifference left her with little expectations of love. Would this cruel world ever lead her down a road of happiness?

Amazon

Characters/Plot

The characters, particularly Salina, were a little over the top but totally fun. They were mostly lighthearted if not a little dramatic. I liked Mark and actually of all the characters he did a great job of keeping the story grounded. There were a host of supporting characters that did a wonderful job rounding out the story. Ah the plot. So there were some…holes…but I’d say it was a rough start and so so ending with a very engaging middle. Especially the fact that every time Salina turned around Mark was there and every time Mark turned around…yep you guessed it, Salina was there. Felt a little contrived at first but thankfully right when it was getting annoying, it stopped…kind of. I don’t want to give too much away but the story was well set historically and I only questioned a few terms, information, and sayings as being historically inaccurate—well executed overall. Particularly towards the end.

Overall

It was a charming read to be sure! I like the writing, only had two confusing scenes, the rest was a quick read. I was curious enough to be engaged throughout. There were a few scenes that left me wanting and end felt a little flat. This author has a knack for fun characters that made me smile more then once at their antics. The historical portion becomes heavier towards the end, and most of it was incorporated well. I’d say this author has lots of potential and I’d be happy to pick up another of their books, especially if their characters are anything like the perfect balance between Salina and Mark.

Rating

3.5 stars (rounded up)

Charming historical romance that has enough heart and wit to keep you reading!

Where did I get it?

Kindle Unlimited.

Quarter 2 Writing Goal updates!

Back on track! Look at me posting writing goal updates and stuff. So proud!

Goals for my writing for 2021:

  1. Unfathomable Plan
    1. Finish writing
    2. Editing
    3. Beta Readers (2021)
    4. Professional Editor (2021)
    5. Cover (finished 4/21)
    6. Pick Publish Date
    7. Publish
  2. The Gate Trilogy Short Story Collection
    1. Finish Writing – All stories complete (3/21)
    2. Edit – Story 1/2 done, edit story 3
    3. Professional edit – story 1/2 done, edit story 3
    4. Cover
    5. Pick Publish Date
    6. Publish
  3. Work on other writing projects:
    1. Zendar 3
      1. Finish Outline
      2. Start Writing (Two chapters in!)
      3. Finish Writing 2022
    2. 1001 Islands 2
      1. Finish Outline
      2. Start Writing (NaNoWriMo 2021)
      3. Finish Writing 2023
    3. Seven Eves – Alaskan Supernatural Crime Novel (on hold)
    4. Demon’s Due – Paranormal Erotica/Romance (ongoing – when the mood strikes me)
    5. Noble Chronicles Series (5 Books Planned)
  4. Consider Publishing Love’s Metamorphosis in eBook
  5. Rewriting Projects
    1. An Honest Misunderstanding
      1. Rewrite
      2. Professional editor
      3. Cover
      4. Pick Publish Date
      5. Publish
    2. Truthseer
      1. Rewrite
      2. Submit for traditional publishing (small press)
  6. Rewrite/Complete Writing Projects
    1. Red Door
    2. The Lady of the Light Trilogy
  7. Participate in NaNoWriMo 2021
    1. Will be writing 1001 Islands 2
  8. Keep up momentum on writing events, speaking events, and conventions. Let’s hope they don’t all get cancelled liked last year!
    1. Blog Tour (February 16-March 9, 2021)
    2. Arctic Comic Com (October 2021)
  9. Read 25 – 14 books read! I think I’ll blow this one out of the water this year!

Writing updates:

I’ve been working hard getting Unfathomable Plan ready for publication! I’ve heard back from one beta reader and am waiting on two more. I may even snoop around for another one. The cover reveal is expected in a few weeks, so keep your eyes pealed!

I’ve been busy at work rewriting Truthseer. I’ve actually made decent progress, and let me tell you it needed it! I’m laughing at some of the plot points and the writing…well it all needs work! At this point I am 27% through. I do it in spurts so I’m hoping to all done by summer. I’m discovering rewriting is harder then I thought, considering I have to read what I wrote, either rewrite or completely abandon it and write new. It is an interesting experience to be sure.

Reading Goal:

It is my goal to read 25 books. Already at 14! I’m doing so good towards the goal that I hope I’ll maybe even reach 50 books by the end of the year, getting back to my old goal.

Happy reading!

What do readers want? by Jolly Reader

Summary

What do readers want?

Have you seen your page reads drop? Have you noticed there isn’t read through on your series? Do you wish you could ask readers why?

In this book an avid genre reader gives writers insight into the process of picking books and reading books, explaining what causes them to stop reading, keep reading, and gives you direction to craft a story that will have readers grabbing your next books.

Amazon

Overall

This book is part reader memoir and part ‘here is what not to do.’ The tone of the story is very informal, almost conversational. It was very easy to read and understand, and I rarely tripped over any of the information as presented. It is one readers perspective that does a great job giving an author a ‘how to’ get more readers and keep more readers. Think of it as a reader roadmap when writing. Things we’ve all heard before, have a hook start, flesh out the middle, and make sure the climax has a punch. But it also holds other gems that are less well known but just as important; don’t head hop between characters in the middle of chapters, don’t do a cliffhanger at the end of a standalone book, and prologues are almost always skipped/avoided. Most of which I found through trial and error, so the author hits it right on the head.

The part that made it a little hard to read in one sitting was it felt like a critique. The author must write a lot of reviews, because it showed in the style of their writing. It wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it did make it a little hard to slog through at times because I had this negative vibe at times. Again, doesn’t take away from the absolutely insightful content, just made me laugh when I got to the chapter titled ‘what do you actually like?’ because I’d started to wonder that myself!

Rating

4 stars

New authors should pick this up, you will save yourself a lot of time. So do yourself a favor if you are thinking of writing a book, read it!

Where did I get a copy?

Kindle Unlimited

Honeymoon Alone by Nicole Macaulay

Summary

When irrepressibly romantic Lucy Gray is ditched at said wedding by her date in front of her whole family, the promises of a psychic seem better than her pity-riddled reality. The psychic’s advice seems insightful: stop ignoring fate’s signs – fate will lead you to love. But when “fate” leads Lucy to London, she finds herself tangled in a web of lies. In a story about finding independence and taking chances, Lucy learns that leaving everything up to fate can be dangerous – and jeopardize her chances at happily ever after. 

Amazon

Characters

Lucy is an amusing and fun character. She felt OLDER then 26 at times, so I’d have to remind myself of her age. Cary is dramatic…but very human at the same time. Oliver has a bit of a duality problem that made a little hard to connect with, but as the story progresses this improves. The whole supporting characters are great! Particularly Mary, Lucy’s best friend. We all need a Mary in our lives.

Plot

It took me a little while to figure out where the author was going to take it. I was a little over halfway when all the pieces came together. I was a little worried that the author would wrap it up awkwardly and go down a path that was hard to swallow, but she did not! So all’s well that ends well! The romance is enjoyable and the connection was expertly done.

Overall

A cotton candy read that would be great for an airplane ride or after a long day at work. It’s light enough to be easy and varied enough to hold my interest. The idea of ‘honeymooning alone’ was very funny considering it’s just a vacation but that’s not quite as fun. There is even some lighthearted comedy mixed in. The most rewarding aspects of the novel is the relationships that exist and those that are built. It brought a realness and wholesome aspect to the novel that made it a truly enjoyable read. I’ll admit I did lose a little interest in the middle but once I figured out where the author was going with the “Honeymooners” I reinvested and couldn’t wait for the fantastic ending!

Rating

4 stars

This is a solid 4 star book and I look forward to reading more by this author! It’s equally about taking risks as it is about family and falling in love. A well-rounded, lighthearted novel.

Where did I get it?

Kindle Unlimited.

I Can Do Stories by Sally Tears and Illustrated by Jenn Garside

Summary

Engaging and Positive Stories for 3 to 7 year olds.

Amazon

Overall

This little book has some adorable stories about perseverance and to keep trying. All three are positive and lighthearted stories with cute illustrations. I believe the first story was the most memorable and the last story the most imaginative. easy to read in eBook too!

Rating

4 stars

Cute!

Where did I get it?

Kindle Unlimited.

Out of the Madhouse and into The Doghouse by Mary Markstrom

Summary

If you love dogs like I do or if you’re stuck in a soul-destroying job like I was and dreaming of down-sizing to a warmer climate then this book may be for you. I write of how I quit my stressful social work job in Glasgow and went to Spain where I ended up working with dogs….

More at Amazon

Overall

As this is a memoir it’s a little difficult to review in my normal format. This book had an interesting story but it didn’t really find its voice until the last 30% of the novel or so. The writing is clunky, almost awkward at times, and the chapter breaks were all over the place. Coupled with the ‘gloomy’ start, I really struggled to get into this book. The author’s memories of the time seems to color each section with different mood brushes that directly impacted this reader’s enjoyment. Furthermore, the earlier half of the novel feels overly dramatized. That being said, I’m glad I stuck with it because as the author turns her life around and begins to gain confidence, her writing and depictions do as well. Honestly the turning part for me was Diablo the horse. The prose perfectly depicted what was happening and all its hilarity! It is a narrative on you can never guess where life will take you, but sometimes a risk is worth it.

Rating

3 stars

Lots of charm but had a slow start. I think others who love memoirs will get enjoyment out of this interesting tale.

Where did I get a copy?

Kindle Unlimited.

Searching for Sarah by Phillip Vega

Summary

Tom’s sister Nina’s will read: “I don’t want one of those generic funerals, where everyone gathers and cries. Be creative. I want something outside the box. You and Sarah can work on this together.”

Tom’s reaction: “Who the hell is Sarah?”

To solve this mystery and honor his older sister Nina’s final wish, Tomas Ruiz (Mid-50s) uses her personal journals to guide his global search for the enigmatic Sarah.
Frustration mounts as he delves deeper into Nina’s past, uncovering secrets that will change his life forever.

Will Tom overcome the seemingly never-ending obstacles and find the mysterious Sarah before putting his sister to rest?

Amazon

Characters

This story is told mostly in flashbacks and from journal entries. The POV is mostly from Nina and Tom, but there are a few random head hops. Nina is a powerful character who has a complicated past. This dynamic is further complicated by the fact you know she is dead from the get go. Tom by contrast grows as the book progresses. He is not the best of men, but he is overall a good man. There are lots of supporting characters, but the siblings are the most dynamic.

Plot

Nina is dead. Tom quickly learns he didn’t know his sister as well as he thought he did. Thus starts the search for a clue to where Sarah is through Nina’s journals. There were a few holes in the plot but overall it was enjoyable. I can say there was a good twist at the end that I didn’t see coming but did explain why Sarah was so hard to find. Even better you get a wonderful sense of closure at the end of the book.

Overall

The characters were wonderfully drawn. The plot told in such a way that after the somewhat slow start, I found myself swiping faster and faster as I neared the end. The writing did languish at times in the beginning after the startling beginning, but it didn’t stay that way long. What is wonderful is it explores so many sensitive subjects like an expert. Embodying them in the characters instead of exploring them towards a narrative. I found it to be a delightful read over all. Only complains were it took a while to pick up steam to the point I had to put the book down several times, there was a fair amount of point of view hopping, and I was not a fan of Tom (the last one did not affect my rating). Trust me, stick with it and get through the start and you’ll be thankful you did!

Rating

4 Stars

This is a solid 4 star book. I would recommend this to most everyone who is interested in LGBTQ+ stories, this one is well worth the read! Wholesome goodness!

Where did I get it?

Kindle Unlimited

Operation Bluebird by Harry Old

Summary

Carrie Hart became Cara Parry for three reasons: to prove herself as an undercover detective; to bring justice to the people who killed Lucy Flynn; and to trial a life of letting go, with no consequence for her real self.
But under the intoxicating lights of Paradise Casino, lines are blurred and letting go becomes a question she had never thought to ask: Who is the real Carrie Hart, and where do her loyalties truly lie?

Amazon

Characters

Carrie/Cara is every person who has ever been over their head but not really understanding how far and drowning. She is such a fascinating character that you find yourself liking her despite some of the choices she made—her flaws make her so REAL. At some point all the characters feel as though they lived. The author focused on actions and names to define characters, limiting the detail on physical traits. Thankfully the characters were so wonderfully drawn that it is easy to keep track.

Plot

This is about a new cop going uncover in London and get lost in it all. Maybe lost isn’t the right word, instead ensnared might be better. It is not something I would normally pick up but I am so glad I got a chance to read this. You get a snapshot in the beginning and then the story backtracks to the start of it all. You get to see Cara make choices that lead her towards it, and man you are going to be surprised. I love when I am one chapter away before I put it together!

Overall

This book blew me away. It was one of those books that just takes hold and doesn’t let go! Ignore the somewhat poorly put together cover, because what is inside is dynamite! The writing starts off feeling like a hard broiled Noir. It doesn’t stay that way as Carrie starts her undercover work. Once it’s focus shifts it is very captivating watching as characters start making decisions that eventually snowball. I almost didn’t like the ending but that last chapter brought a sense of conclusion to the tale that is needed. I only have on minor critique—sometimes the writing and the era don’t match and some of the technology I’d expect to see used in 2012-2016 just isn’t or very minimal. Very easy to overlook and just enjoy this suspenseful tale!

Rating

5 Stars

Banking on forbidden love and the thrill/suspense of the story, once this novel takes hold, you are in for a ride!

Where did I get a copy?

Kindle Unlimited