Indie Book Review: Shallow Waters by @RebeccaJBradley

Review:

Crime isn’t really my genre (I like cozy mysteries, not so much the gritty stuff), but since I follow Rebecca Bradley on wordpress, I was interested in reading what she’d written and decided to pick up her book. Shallow Waters sucked me right into the cold and gritty world of British police procedurals, and I was surprised at how quickly my reading experience turned from a ‘just out of curiosity’ to ‘I have to know what happens next!’ The atmosphere and the characters were done so well, and the crime was so compelling: there was so little information at the start, then it seemed to be an open-and-shut case before it spiralled into something much darker and sinister. I really enjoyed getting to know the Detective-Inspector and her world. There was just the right amount of personal drama and drive, and the ending was suitably tragic.

I’ve become attached to DI Hannah Robbins, so I’m looking forward to where this series goes. Even though crime isn’t really my thing, I found a lot to enjoy here. Has it changed my attitude to the whole genre? No, not really, but I ‘get’ it now, and I find police-procedurals more appealing than I did before.

Recommended for anyone with even a passing interest in crime.

Like my review? Like it on Goodreads too!

Author Goodreads Page.

Author website.

Amazon buy link.

Shallow Waters, by Rebecca Bradley

Book Length: 370 pages

Police Procedural Crime (Adult Fiction)

According to the Blurb:

‘A gritty police procedural, with no-holds barred and a shocking insight to the reality of some. Dark and disturbing, yet exceptionally compelling.’ – Mel Sherratt, author of Taunting The Dead.

‘Tense, compelling and utterly absorbing. DI Hannah Robbins is a force to be reckoned with.’ – Jane Isaac, author of The Truth Will Out.

When the naked, battered body of an unidentified teenager is found dumped in an alleyway, post-mortem finds evidence of a harrowing series of events.

Another teenage death with the same MO pushes DI Hannah Robbins and her team on the Nottingham City division Major Crimes Unit, to their limits, and across county borders. In a race against the clock they attempt to unpick a thick web of lies and deceit to uncover the truth behind the deaths.

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@RonovanWrites Weekly Haiku Challenge: War and Fame

In response to Ronovan’s Weekly Haiku Prompt Challenge.

war-weary landscape

seeks deeper infamy, so

deepens destruction

I was shocked again with the latest video that ISIS proudly dumped into the lap of the world media. It is not enough for them to destroy their own people and threaten to destroy the rest of the world – they have attacked their own history, one of ‘the cradles of civilisation’.

“Islamic State militants ransacked Mosul’s central museum, destroying priceless artefacts that are thousands of years old, in the group’s latest rampage which threatens to upend millennia of coexistence in the Middle East.

The destruction of statues and artefacts that date from the Assyrian and Akkadian empires, revealed in a video published by Isis on Thursday, drew ire from the international community and condemnation by activists and minorities that have been attacked by the group.” – from The Guardian website http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/feb/26/isis-fighters-destroy-ancient-artefacts-mosul-museum-iraq

Destruction: Isis thugs push a statue to the ground at a museum in Mosul. Source: UK’s Mirror (Yes I know the Mirror isn’t a great source but they had actual stills of the video posted)

 

This is messed up, but unfortunately it is nothing new. The two largest standing statues of Buddah were destroyed by the Taliban in 2001.

Ancient Archeological Sites That Were Destroyed By Stupid Humans

There are so many examples of hateful people destroying art, culture and knowledge, not just in the middle east but all over the world. The Nazi’s book burnings. Pol Pot’s decapitation of Buddhist statues. These are not acts of one country invading another – the desecration is self-inflicted. It is so, so sad.

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I took this picture in 2010

 

We believe certain things are sacred, that they will be kept and preserved for the good of the human race even when we war against each other. It is a terrible truth that nothing is sacred, especially when it can be used to incite further fear and hatred.

 

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Flash Fiction: Second Time’s the Charm

In response to Susan Lattwein’s Flash Fiction Prompt

No matter how much I kicked, no matter how much I screamed, no noise was loud enough to attract any attention. He must have parked in the middle of nowhere, or else the enclosed boot of the car was muffling everything I did. No one was coming for me.

The minutes ticked by, my ears settling to catch even the faintest noises, but there was nothing to hear. The inside of the boot stank like old meat. I wondered if I should try kicking again, maybe trying to focus my attack on the lock? I rolled over and tried to finger my bound hands across the lid, trying to locate something I could target. The crunch of footsteps on loose gravel froze me. I managed to take a deep shuddering breath before the boot popped open and harsh yellow light blinded me from above.

I snapped my eyes shut as he grabbed my elbow and wrenched me out of the car. Somehow, I managed to stay on my feet as I was half-dragged away from the solitary light. The fresh air brought the smell of salt and humus. I opened my eyes.

A road overgrown with weeds led to a little pier jutting out over the mud bank. It reminded me of the boardwalks I used to take when I was a kid, looking for guppies, frogs, and toadfish. This was a proper lake though, not just a little billabong. The water had to be deep.

There was no doubt in my mind why I was here. My whole life had been innocent, inconsequential. I’d made sure to anger nobody, learning from mistakes long past. The man didn’t speak, but I knew what he wanted.

“You want revenge.”

He took no notice of me, his gait unchanging. My shoes hit the wood and he pushed me in front of him, holding me at arm’s length.

“Look, you’re either just a psycho-killer, or you remember as much as I do. Which is it?”

Ever forwards, unrelenting.

“Okay, let’s say you do remember. That was the past – I can’t do anything about it now!”

We got to the end of the pier. I turned to him and opened my mouth to speak, but he just dived in, dragging me along with him.

Salty water rushed into my mouth, eyes, and ears. My hands still tied behind me, I was helpless to fight against him. This was exactly how it had gone. He was weaker than me back then, our roles reversed, and I had held him under until he stopped moving. It hadn’t even been anything personal – he was an old man who was taking too long to die, and he was making the country sick because of it. Everyone had turned a blind eye.

Before I lost consciousness, I wondered vaguely if he’d kill the others too, for what we did in our past lives.

 

Teacher’s Aid

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There’s a surprising amount (to me) of psychology involved in doing an education degree. The book on the left is recommended reading for my course, and the other two I found in the same section. I figured they’d be useful. I might even review them 😉

Blogging teachers! Any books you’d like to recommend to me? I’m all ears!

Book Review: Trancing the Tiger by Rachael Slate

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Review:

I started reading this book expecting paranormal romance, but it turns out it’s solidly in the erotic romance genre. Whoops.

The sex and lust was abundant, and I can recognise that it was done well, but those are not the reasons I read paranormal or romance. I want other things going on, be it mystery/drama/lore/magic/character development, and I felt I didn’t get much of any of that in this book. It was just sex and lust scenarios with a fairly loose paranormal setting. I didn’t even like the hero and heroine’s romance because it was all based around their animal attraction towards each other – I couldn’t understand it on an emotional level, and didn’t really care what happened to the characters (the heroine annoyed me, so that made it difficult for me to be sympathetic to her). Actually, a lot of things annoyed me in this book, but they are all things I can attribute to my disinterest in the genre. I cannot hate a book that is doing a good job of things I don’t care for, because other people do care for them. Sure, I wished for more of a paranormal adventure, but other readers won’t need any of that to enjoy this book.

Recommended for fans of erotic romance with a backdrop of paranormal.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

Like my review? Like it on Goodreads too!

Author Goodreads Page.

Amazon buy link.

Trancing the Tiger, by Rachel Slate

Book Length: 297 pages

Erotic Paranormal Romance (Adult Fiction)

According to the Blurb:

***WARNING: Contains Adult Content (explicit love scenes, profanity, and some violence)***

Delve into a world steeped in tradition and superstition…
After her parents become infected with the Red Death, Lucy Yeoh flees to Malaysia seeking answers. Everything in this closed-off section of the world is paradise—from the lush tropical climate to her sexy new neighbor, Sheng…who just might be delusional. He claims the Plague God unleashed the Red Death and only a circle of Chinese Zodiac spirit animals can cleanse the Earth. Even more, he insists she’s one of them: the Rabbit. Long furry ears and fluffy bunny tail included.

He’ll show her how to fight to save the world…
As the Chosen of the Tiger, the burden of restoring balance to the world has fallen onto Li Sheng’s shoulders. When he discovers that the ally he’s long awaited, the Dragon, is actually just the Rabbit, Sheng is quick to dismiss Lucy. If only she’d stay dismissed. Lucy’s Rabbit refuses to cooperate, undermining the authority of his Tiger at every turn…and seducing him to the limits of his darkest desires. He’s not supposed to want her. Not when he needs the spirit circle complete and she’s their weakest link.

She’ll show him a love worth fighting the world to save…
Sheng’s enemies draw closer, and not everyone wants Lucy alive. Together, they’ll have to navigate a treacherous world where a line between duty and their hearts has been drawn between them. They must either sacrifice one, or find a way to surrender to both.

Indie Book Review: Rangers by Chloe Gardner

Review:

Being a long time Supernatural fan, as I read Rangers I immediately recognised the inspiration behind the story. This isn’t just a fanfic though – the lore and characters are their own, and I had a lot of fun reading the paranormal adventures the twins and their tag-along got up to.

I did find the writing a little clunky, but the imagination was there, and I’ll take imagination over fluid writing any day. Having said that, I felt I didn’t connect with the characters as much as I wanted to, but I was still able to enjoy the ride. So many monsters, so much magic, so much action! I am interested in seeing where the series goes…

Recommended for fans of Supernatural. I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Like my review? Like it on Amazon too!

Author Site.

Amazon buy link.

Rangers, by Chloe Gardner

Sam and Sam #1

Book Length: 414 pages

Paranormal Adventure (Adult Fiction)

According to the Blurb:

Sam and Jason have been at this a long time, and they’re some of the best out there. Gremlins, goblins, ghosts of all kind, vampires, even the yeti that time in Cleveland, they go where they’re needed and they kill what needs killed. It’s that simple. And it’s a pretty good life, really.

Then there’s the girl. Samantha. She’s feisty and difficult and she knows next to nothing about what they do, but she’s pretty handy with a hatchet and seems to just keep tagging along with them, city after city, witch after ghost after spirit, despite Jason’s best efforts to ditch her along the way. If he’d had any idea just how complicated she was about to make their lives, he probably would have left her in Georgia.

It’s too bad, really. Sam appears to be in love with her.

Book Review: The Black Swan Inheritance by Marigold Dicer

Thank you Danielle for reviewing my book!

Urban Book Reviews

The Black Swan Inheritance Final Cover

Marigold Dicer has beautifully woven together a masterpiece that readers won’t want to let go of. The story focuses on the Black Swans which are native to Australia. They are beautiful and very powerful creatures. And Anita happens to be one of them. Studying at the college level to become a doctor just like her dad, Anita decides to celebrate just one time. Thinking that the one time celebration won’t hurt her, right? As it turns out this one move causes everything to change within Anita and her world. Anita isn’t going to back down from the new challenge presented to her by her actions, but neither is she ready to be a perfect diplomat. She has her anxiety, panic attacks and bitchy moments to comb through before she can really step up to the plate and handle what is happening. Can Anita do it? Or will she fail in…

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Rule of Thirds

In response to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge “Rule of Thirds”

DSCN7559

 

Tried bokeh, can’t do bokeh. Decided to just do the ‘rule of thirds’ thing, and I was even struggling with that, but look! Look what nature has provided! A beautiful perfect flower, complete with little sparkly dots of dew, and I take a picture trying ‘rule of thirds’ and unintentionally fulfill a half-decent bokeh!

Moral of the story: don’t let the feeling of defeat actually defeat you.

I am stoked – STOKED – that I took this photo! Little things in life, you know?

#1000Speak Hello, nice to meet you . . . again.

“Amnesiacs are a rare thing. They look healthy. They look normal. They are great actors. But they can’t do some of the simplest things due to no fault of their own. How many do you know?”
I don’t know how many I know, so I need to know. Please read!

ronovanwrites

1000 Voices Speak for Compassion.1000 voices speak for compassion

As I write this it’s the 19th and something nagged at me the 20th was a date I should know. I logged on to facebook and saw a 1000 Voices for Compassion update. It’s a group for bloggers that I think the name of speaks for itself. Now here I am writing. Good thing I joined the group at some point. Not sure when, but I did.

People forget all the time. People instantly think of Alzheimer’s patients when you start talking about memory problems. We’ve learned to have compassion for them.

But there are other reasons people forget. You have accidents that result in concussions, brain damage, and that can be a problem.

Have you ever wondered about people with amnesia? Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be an adult and not know 40 years worth of memories, people, history? Have you…

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Weekly Haiku Prompt: Remember Those Without

Caught in first world issues

We so rarely glimpse outside.

Blind to the harsh world.

There are so many instances when the world has been outraged about some calamity and then forgotten about it the very next week. We prefer to forget – it is easier than remembering just how terrible the world is, and how terrible we ‘humans’ can be. But we must keep our eyes open so we know how lucky we are and remember to show kindness to everyone. You never know what they’ve been through.

Thanks again to Ronovan for the weekly haiku prompt.

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