Monday, 28 April 2014

#440 ~ The Job Offer

The Job OfferThe Job Offer by Eleanor Webb

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I featured this as one of my DSOA picks way back in April 2013, and at the time of writing this review it's still available as a free download on Amazon.

It was a sweet, and uncomplicated contemporary romance, that was really enjoyable to read.

Although it was the first time that I've reading anything by this author, but it won't be the last.

Product Details

Still available at the time of this post as a free Kindle Download.

225 pages
Indie Writer (Self-published)
Fiction, Contemporary, Romance

Errors/Bug Bears

There were a few, but nothing too major.

"gotten" at least twice that I noticed.

Loc 157:  You are supposed tell your best friend - to tell.

Loc 892:  She came outside wearing a Capri of white Capri pants, a yellow button down short sleeve sheet, and ... - shirt.

Loc 1057:  Chelsea's cheeks were red, and she blue eyes were bright ... - her.

Loc 1198:  He was breathing heavy, and she could feel ... - heavily.

Loc 1506:  After putting his hand on her low back ... - lower.

Loc 2161:  ... and he had the most power orgasm he had ever experienced - powerful.

Loc 2658:  She chose not to wear a vale - veil.

Loc 2676: ... white Rolls Royce limousine - snort, this one really made me laugh, it's just a Rolls Royce, no limousine required!

Loc 2758:  She sold yourself to you, Ben, so that she could get a job at Stanford Enterprises - herself.

Happy reading.



Tuesday, 22 April 2014

WOW, Marianne Azizi is certain proactive ....

Colour me super-dooper impressed, the notes on Errors/Bug Bears from yesterday's post on Sour Milk and Stolen Honey have been corrected already.

That is certainly taking customer service to a whole new level.

Thank you Marianne.




Monday, 21 April 2014

#439 ~ Sour Milk and Stolen Honey

Sour Milk and Stolen HoneySour Milk and Stolen Honey by Marianne Azizi

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The book is a non-fiction account one woman's life, fighting a shocking abuse of human rights and liberty in the name of love.

It was well written, and incredibly moving. I don't want to offer up any spoilers, as it is important that Marianne gets to use her own voice to tell each reader. I'm amazed that the whole sorry business didn't take much more of a price on her that it did. She is an amazing, inspirational woman, and is the living embodiment of 'that which does not kill you, will make you stronger'.

Her story unfolded at a good clip, and kept me engrossed. With the turn of each page, she managed to convey a decent story, and effect me with many, many different emotions as the twists and turns of her life unfolded.

If any part of your believes in the right of a human being to exercise their rights to liberty, choice and love where it falls and stay free of manipulation, then please, please, please read her story. Then go and encourage as many people as possible to read it too. Only a huge groundswell of public knowledge and opinion will stop this from happening, and return liberty to many.

Upon checking links for the Product Details bit of the post, I was pleased to note that Marianne is working on another book.  Good on her, she has a lovely literary voice, and I can't wait to read it.  Keep up to date with her latest project on her website and Facebook (details below).

Product Details

The author, Marianne Azizi, got in touch with me the other day with a request to do a fast-track review for her, and the above review was by honest opinion. 

You can find a copy of her book HERE.  This listed Kindle price is £4.99.

241 pages
Indie Writer (Self-published)
Non Fiction, Psychology, Self-Help, Human Rights, Romance

Author's Facebook page
Author's Website

Errors/Bug Bears:

STOP PRESS:  22/4/14: Marianne, is one of the most proactive authors around, she has already corrected the errors I pointed out below. Now that is impressive.

There were one or two, but absolutely nothing major.

Page 31:  

At the time I still felt a little awkward with Manny's strong gruff character but we would eventually form a strong friendship to this day.

It would have been better as:

At the time, I still felt a little awkward with Manny's strong gruff character, but we would eventually form a strong friendship that lasts to this day.

Page 53:

The couple in the cafe was so king - were.

Page 66: ...but trying to conve a stranger was proving to be impossibility - an impossibility.

Page 108: 

I held him in my arms as he cried and I made the promise, the promise ...

I'm not sure about the author's intention with this sentence, but it feels a bit untidy.  I would go with something like this:

I held him in my arms as he cried, and I made the promise ... the promise ... and he always knew I kept my word.

Page 123:  .. have ignored Rick's please - pleas.

Page 132: ...but half that I as I learned -  but half that as I learned.

Page 157:  He yet, I knew was literally terrified - Yet, I knew, he was literally terrified.

Page 218:  How can it could be - but I can't seem to find it.  It's probable that I got the page number wrong on my notes ... it was a pdf file so difficult to bookmark ... in which case it was between pages 211 and 256.

Page 256:  It came, very day, the worst dream in the worst situation - not sure what the author's intention was should it every?

Page 277: get to court for on time - court on time?

Page 278:  No one would allow him to be with me.  I

I hope you enjoy Marianne's book.

Happy reading.



Sunday, 20 April 2014

#438 ~ A Game of Thrones

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1)A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

My rating: 5 of 5 stars ++ rating

Book #1 - A Song of Fire and Ice Series

By chance I had a conversation with a co-worker about Game of Thrones, shortly after I also saw a clip from the new series. A discussion about the elements involved to make a good book, and then a good TV adaptation ensued.

I don't like give opinions not based in fact if I can help it, so immediately downloaded the first book and started to read, with a view to getting a box set of the series as well if I felt it was any good ... it took only a few hours to decide, it wasn't just good, it was EXCELLENT, I got the whole TV series and have struggled to put the book down.

Using my analytical head, the author uses simple and compound sentences in the main, with some other literary tools such as simile, metaphor, repetition etc. That in itself would make it good, but the book transcends to exceptional.

His use of pace and characterisation are immense, and the world building is second to none. I love the fact that he kills and maims with frequency and no discrimination - it enhances the dramatic effect and keeps you reading to find out exactly what is going to happen next.

It's an epic read in size, all 800 pages, and graphic quality. There is no wonder that somebody chose to adapt this for TV. All the bones are there waiting for the fleshing out, and sexing up, to provide great entertainment.

When discussed it seems that everyone has a different favourite character, for very many different reasons. My daughter like Ned Stark, my husband like Danny and my favourite is never short on one liners, even though he is short in stature - Tyrion rules!

From me a better than 5 star rating.

Product Details

You can pick up a copy HERE.  Kindle price is £2.99, but there is also a library bind at £12.04, which is exceptional value for money.

819 pages
Fiction, Historical, Fantasy
Harper Voyager (2010)

Errors/Bug bears

I have to admit that "gotten" did creep on more than one occasion.  He also uses 'short ways' and 'long ways' instead of a short way, or a long way.

I also disliked the use of 'in back' on page 369, and 'stopped to visit' on page 47.

Apart from the above, there was one actual error on Page 711:  'Master Luwin's turret was so cluttered that it seemed to Bran a wonder that her ever found anything.' - should be he ever found anything.

Happy reading.



Tuesday, 15 April 2014

#437 ~ Forever

Forever (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #3)Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Mercy Falls Series Book #3

This follows on nicely from my last review, as it was Book 3 in the Mercy Falls Series.

Still busy at work, I opted to listen to this rather than be slower and read a copy, so I borrowed my copy from the local library.

In point of fact, this follow on book had less teenage angst that Shiver. There was enough to make the plot interesting and move on though. A whole star's worth improvement between the two books, and for me much more enjoyable.

Product Details

It's available HERE in all formats.

Errors/Bugs Bears


#436 Linger

Linger (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #2)Linger by Maggie Stiefvater

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Mercy Falls Series #Book 2

I will admit that I didn't read the first book in the series, but actually it probably would not have changed my opinion on this one.

As it was a busy time at work, I decided that I would be able to listen to this rather than be slower and read a copy, so I borrowed my copy from the local library. Was the difference between listening and reading any different?

Not really. In point of fact the narration was very good, and it didn't detract from the reading experience.

Towards the end I did find that the teenage angst in the plot began to grate a little, however it was a reasonable offering of Young Adult fiction.

I also should comment on the weird German quote at the beginning - I couldn't see the point of it, and didn't feel it added to the tone of the book at all.

I will give the third book in the Mercy Falls series a go, just to see how it all pans out.

Product Details

I borrowed it from the local library as an audio book, and listened to it on Baby (my Kindle Fire HD), but it's available HERE in all formats.

369 Pages
Fiction, Contemporary, Young Adult, Werewolves
Scholastic Fiction (Aug 2011)

Errors/Bug Bears

As mentioned above, I wasn't a fan of the German quote at the beginning.

Happy reading.



#435 ~ Caroline

Caroline (Beauvisage, #1)Caroline by Cynthia Wright

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Books #1 Beauvisage Series

This was a featured DSOA pick on my blog in April 2013.

Having read a previous Cynthia Wright Novel, Silver Storm, I felt that this book left me wanting.

The characterisation was a little one dimensional, and it went from ponders at some points, and plain boring in others. Not what I would expect from the reputation and calibre of this particular author.

All in all it was disappointing, but I won't let me put it off, as balancing the two novels the author still bears promise.

Product Details

It's currently still available for free HERE.

336 pages
Fiction, Historical, Romance
Boxwood Manor Books (Nov 2013)

Errors/Bug Bears

Loc 1783:  lovely garden in back - I have to admit that I find the phrasing 'in back' to be unattractive in the setting on an historical novel.

Loc 2167: I'll go deliver - uck, go and deliver.

Loc 2250: I'd should like to tell her good-bye - what would be wrong with I would like to say good bye?

Loc 2764 & 2813:  gotten

Happy reading.



Sunday, 6 April 2014

#434 ~ The Viscount who Loved Me

Viscount Who Loved Me: The Epilogue IIViscount Who Loved Me: The Epilogue II by Julia Quinn

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I bought an audio file copy from to get me through a borrowing bit of admin at work.

It's always a joy to read, or in this case listen to, Julia Quinn.

She has such a unique and funny writing voice, and it really shone through with the narration by Kevan Brighting.

One of the things I love about Julia is that she visits her characters again, and it was lovely to see that Anthony and Kate were no different.

Product Details

I bought myself the Audible Book copy HERE, which was £1.00 and listened on Baby (Kindle Fire HD) via the Overdrive App.

If you're interested in getting the Kindle file, then it's HERE at £3.59 or the paperback HERE for £6.79.

Errors/Bug Bears

Not applicable.

Happy reading, or listening.



#433 ~ How to Write Short Stories in 6 Easy Steps

How to Write Short Stories in 6 Easy StepsHow to Write Short Stories in 6 Easy Steps by KS Tan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A step-by-step guide with some practical element to it. It wont take you long to read it, as it's only about 25 or so pages long, but if you are interested in structuring good short stories then it's a good book to have.

My only slight criticism is that it could have done deeper, and thus been a bit longer.

Product Details

28 Pages
Indie Writer (Self-Published)
Non-Fiction, Essential Reading, Self Help, Writing

Errors/Bug Bears

None noted

Happy reading.



Friday, 4 April 2014

#432 ~ A Hidden Fire

A Hidden Fire (Elemental Mysteries, #1)A Hidden Fire by Elizabeth Hunter

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Book #1:  Elemental Mysteries Series

Nice slow burn romance, with an unusual twist on the fantasy creature side of things.

Some nice snappy writing, and decent dialogue.

I thoroughly enjoyed this, and would happily read more by Ms Hunter. She will be added to my WTR list.

This was a DSOA on my Blog in April 2014, thus it was free at the time. I would be more than happy to pay for this one though.

Product Details

A DSOA pick back in April 2013 - do not adjust your screen, I am a year behind with my reading.

It was free at the time, and is still showing at this point in time HERE as a free Kindle Download.  The paperback is listed at £6.66.

274 pages
Fiction, Magic & Mystery, Romance
Indie Writer (Self-published)

Errors/Bug Bears:

A few, but nothing major (just annoying in the main)... I'm not too sure of the page numbers with the first few, but they are before page 16 I think.

Page ?:  exactly go wander around - go and wander.

Page ?:  Unless you want to finish up early - finish early.

Page 16:  After completing her duties in back - it's just not an attractive sentence.

Page 25:  Giovanni could even feel his posture relax they walked - as they walked.

Page 31:  ...then come join us - come and join us.

Page 63:  He could stop the laughter that burst out - could not stop.

Page 95/96:  ...but she knew Carwyn could her her because he his shoulders began shaking with silent laughter.

Page 206:  Lorenzo would come visit her - [insert sigh here].

Page 208:  Maybe I would have gotten married.  Gotten a cat ... - uck.

Page 208: ... come save you - uck.

Page 210:  ...growing taller and elevating them just under edge of the cliff - just under the edge of the cliff.

Page 218: ... go wash some of this dust off - it drives me batty.

Page 228:  Go get dressed - again!

Page 234:  He stopped writing Giuliana - it's only one extra word, I am beginning to think I'm unreasonable to expect conjunctions.  If I see too many in any one piece it puts me off, and it gets marked down.

Happy reading.



Wednesday, 2 April 2014

#431 ~ Binding Spell

Binding Spell (Tales of the Latter Kingdoms #3)Binding Spell by Christine Pope

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Book #3 in the Tales of the Latter Kingdoms Series

This is Book #3 in the Tales of the Latter Kingdoms Series, but the first book that I've read by Christine Pope.

I featured it as a DSOA pick on my Blog in April 2013, which meant that at that time it was available as a free Kindle download.

Although this is Book #3 in the series, it's capable of standing alone.

Actually, it's a fairly decent fantasy/magic/romantic novel that I really quite enjoyed.

I love the cover too, which I think first attracted me to the work.

This was enjoyable enough that I will be going back and putting the first two books of the series on my WTR list.

Product Details

As mentioned above, this was a DSOA pick.  It's available now as a Kindle Download for £1.99 HERE (which is a reasonable enough price) and £9.26 for the paperback (which is a heft price tag).

342 pages
Fiction, Magic & Mystery, Romance
Dark Valentine Press 2013

Error/Bug Bear

Page 41:  gotten - say no more!

Page 46:  would be to write them both and ask - write to them both.

Page 60:  But my father taught me as best he could, showing me the simple spells most all users of magic could use, even as he told me that every mage-born sould had his own particular talent - particularly scrappy sentence that needs to be restructured.

Page 117:  I'm sure if we go meet them - uck!

Page 216:  And while the air was colder than what I would consider comfortable - than I would.

Page 281:  for there are not so many places as what you describe ... - as many places as you describe.

Page 282:  But there are still some houses such as what I've described - such as I've described.

Page 282:  as new people take up residence there at a greater rate than what you might find in the older districts of the city - than you might find in the older.

Page 283:  well, more people than what Maldis would want about - more people than Maldis would want.

Page 299:  gotten - I'm going to start a campaign against this word.

Page 331:  gotten - arghhhh!

Happy reading



Tuesday, 1 April 2014

#430 ~ Married by Midnight

Married By Midnight (Pembroke Palace, #4)Married By Midnight by Julianne MacLean

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Book #3 in the Pembroke Palace Series

I featured this about a year ago as a DSOA on my blog.

It turned out to be a fairly standard historical romance that was enjoyable. It didn't set my world alight, but then it made a nice change from other genres I've been reading lately.

If you want boy meets girl, with conflict and resolution, then a heavy dose of love and a suggestion of sex added in, then this is for you.

I liked it enough to add the other books in the series to my WTR list.

Product Details

It was featured as a free Kindle Download file in my DSOA around this time last year, but at the moment it is available at £2.49 HERE.  All in all that's not overly expensive.

180 pages
Indie Writer (Self-published)
Fiction, Historical, Romance

Errors/Bug Bears:

None noted - that doesn't necessarily mean there weren't any, but I didn't feel the need to hit my highlight button.

Happy reading.



#429 ~ The Keeping

The Keeping (Law of the Lycans, #2)The Keeping by Nicky Charles

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Book #2: Law of the Lycans Series

So far I've thoroughly loved this series; good solid story-telling like old fashioned school dinners. By that I mean, nourishing and rib sticking with no fancy trimmings. The girl knows her at around a comma splice too!

The plot moved along quite well; a nice twist developed half way through. Actually, I think that this author has the ability to take risks, and I'd love to see her really go to town in the way of twists, turns and double dealing.

I'm amazed that Nicky is writing this series for no recompense: she is thoroughly worth paying to read!

Product Details:

A DSOA pick from April 2013 (as mentioned above the series is free).  Hurry up and download your copy from HERE, before she changes her mind.

372 pages
Indie Writer (Self-published)

Errors/Bug Bears:

I can't lie, there is some non-standard English in her work, but the level was low enough not to be too annoying to me.

I made more notes in total than the first book.

I had forgotten to make a note of the locations, but they range from the beginning to Loc 2321:

We found her on the propriety - property.

And then it was the weirdest thing, just liked you'd see in a cartoon - like.

Why don't you two go see - go and see.

With a disappointed sigh, she fell back asleep - this is me being fussy, but back to sleep just sounds better.

She stood outsideThe Broken Antler - outside The Broken Antler.

Loc 2321:  Her car was, in fat, parked just a block down the road fromThe Broken Antler - from The Broken Antler.

Loc 2334:  ...he felt her moving her hands move up to clap his shoulders.

Loc 2455:  ...Ruth's Diner andThe Broken Antler - and The Broken Antler.

Loc 2594: Sneaking a peak at his face - peek

Loc 2765:  Because it's pouring rain - pouring with rain.

Loc 3340:  ...and leaving me in a lurch - in the lurch.

Loc 3437:  ...go get those cameras - uck!

Loc 3557: ...up toThe Broken Antler - up to The Broken Antler.

Loc 4230:  ...approachedThe Broken Antler - approached The Broken Antler.

Loc 4394:  His wolf relished the erotica pain - erotic pain.

Loc 5596:  ...inThe Broken Antler - in The Broken Antler.

Loc 7812:  Shifting so he was on top her - on top of her.

Happy reading.



#428 ~ The Mating

The Mating (Law of the Lycans, #1)The Mating by Nicky Charles

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Book #1 Law of the Lycans Series

Nicely written follow up book in the Law of the Lycans Series.

Although a couple of phrasing issues this work is definitely of a higher quality than some I read, and anyway I can't complain as it was a free Kindle download. It's not uncommon for an author to issue 1 free book in the series, but more than one is generous - especially as the writing is for a good enough quality to be paid for.

I like the slightly different spin she's put on the usual werewolf story.

Product Details

This was a DSOA pick on my Blog in April 2014 - and yes, it has taken me a year to get around to reading this one.

It's available on Amazon HERE, and still listed free.

266 pages
Indie Writer (Self-published)

Errors/Bug Bears

Loc 2369:  Elise tried to logic the situation - that's an untidy sentence.

Loc 3170:  ...visit with Julia - it's the American way, but I hate it.

Loc 6570:  ...jogging down the lane way - better phrasing would have been nice.

Loc 6614:  Still and all ... - it's the American way, I just don't need to be happy about it.

Happy reading.



#427 ~ The Pocket Book of Proofreading

The Pocket Book of Proofreading: A guide to freelance proofreading & copy-editing: A Guide to Freelance Proofreading and Copy-editingThe Pocket Book of Proofreading: A guide to freelance proofreading & copy-editing: A Guide to Freelance Proofreading and Copy-editing by William Critchley

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Useful guide for anybody interested in proof reading.

Personally, I purchased a copy to help in editing my n work in the future as well as doing some work for others.

I keep it to hand on my desk for easy reference.

Product Details

Available HERE as a Kindle Download (£5.51) the paperback version is £12.20. 

262 pages
First English Books (2013)
Non-fiction, Essential Reading, Reference, Writing

Errors/Bug Bears

None noted

Happy reading