Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Book Review: Filthy Beautiful Lies

Filthy Beautiful Lies
by Kendall Ryan
Genres: Romance, Erotica
 I have no idea why she auctioned off her virginity for a cool mill. Regardless, I'm now the proud new owner of a perfectly intact hymen. A lot of good that will do me. I have certain tastes, certain sexual proclivities. My cock is a bit more discriminatory than most. And training a virgin takes finesse and patience - both of which I lack.
Sophie Evans has been backed into a corner. With her sister's life hanging in the balance, the only choice is to claw her way out, even if that means selling her virginity to the highest bidder at an exclusive erotic club. When Colton Drake takes her home, she quickly learns nothing is as it seems with this beautifully troubled man. Being with him poses challenges she never expected, and pushes her to want things she never anticipated.
A sinfully seductive erotic romance where everything has a price and the cost of love is the highest of all from New York Times & USA Today bestselling author, Kendall Ryan.
When I picked up this book, it was originally because I just wanted to read something different. Something that was just simple and easy -- thoughtless. When I opened Filthy Beautiful Lies I never thought I would care about the characters, or wonder where they'll end up. Walking into this, I never imagined that I would be leaving with another amazing story to add to the countless others I hope to encounter.
If you're looking for an erotica book that doesn't drop off as soon as the sex happens, if you're looking for an erotica book that has a decent plot, intriguing characters, and makes you wonder why all books aren't written like that, here you go. 

As always, links can be located below.








Purchase this book through
Amazon
Her Site (you could get a signed copy!),
or

Follow Kendall on 
or


Monday, August 29, 2016

Book Review: Beneath Claire's House (Corey J. Popp)

Beneath Claire's House 
by: Corey J. Popp

Genres: Horror, Paranormal, Thriller, Young Adult

Sixteen-year-old Claire Young is tormented by a recurring, prophetic nightmare and visitations from gruesome, mutilated ghosts. She's convinced the apparitions intend to harm her widowed father, but there's little she can do locked away in Saint Thomas Psychiatric Hospital. Her situation is hopeless until a mysterious priest delivers the name of a man who may be the only one willing to help. Claire launches a daring scheme that leads her and her best friend to a former paranormal investigator.

But the matter is complicated by Claire's own father. Convinced his daughter is schizophrenic, he'll send Claire back to Saint Thomas permanently if he discovers she’s still clinging to her delusions. Claire and her friends must tread lightly to complete the investigation, but amid bizarre twists and chilling encounters, she’ll discover her home's basement is hiding something far more sinister than just ghosts.

 
**WE WERE GIVEN A FREE COPY OF THIS BOOK IN EXCHANGE FOR THE FOLLOWING HONEST REVIEW** 


Claire has been through more than most of us could ever imagine....and she's only sixteen years old.  After the death of her mother, she began being terrorized by ghosts....the scary kind of ghosts that would make anyone experiencing them question their sanity.  She's convinced that they are trying to harm her father, but vocalizing that to him lands her in a psychiatric hospital.  How in the world is she going to be able to save her dad when she's locked away?!?!?!?  That in itself would have made an awesome plot, but believe me when I say that the twists and turns in this book are unlike anything you've read before.   

Beneath Claire's House definitely didn't lack in the suspense department.  It's the kind of book that keeps you on the edge of your seat up until the very end.  I must admit that I did quite a bit of speculation as to what Claire's ghosts wanted from her, but boy was I way off!

 Corey J. Popp is a very talented writer and has left me wanting to read more of his work. 




Get your copy on Amazon 
or at Barnes & Noble  
and don't forget to add on Goodreads


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Book Review: Marcy Meets An Alien (James Eves )

Marcy Meets An Alien 
by James Eves
Genre: Children's, Graphic Novel

Out on a picnic in the countryside, a young girl discovers a strange creature in the nearby woods. Initially frightened, the creature soon strikes up a friendship with her, bonding over a game of football, an unusual drink called 'orange juice' and a butterfly chase (that takes a perilous turn!). 

It is only when the girl is called back to the family camper van that we realise things are not what they seem...

Marcy Meets an Alien is a story that crosses the boundaries of race, culture and even the galaxy! Told completely through vivid, dynamic pictures, without any words, this adventure demonstrates how being from different worlds is no barrier to fun, friendship and danger while twists and revelations make us consider what we think of as 'alien'.
 
 Marcy Meets An Alien is a book described as "A children's 5+ graphic novel".
Now, when I read the term "graphic novel" my brain immoderate starts to yell "COMIC BOOK, COMIC BOOK!!!!!" Marcy Meets An Alien wasn't really a comic book. When I was younger, I would have called it a picture book, because, you know, it had pictures in it.

     We've had this talk before, I know. We had it when I reviewed "A Boo-Tiful Halloweenand "Bees in Loretta's Bonnet", but I feel like we should have it again.
     I never feel qualified to read and review children's books. Am  I supposed to read the book with a critical eye, or am I supposed to read it as though I'm a small child (I am small in height, but not in age)? How do I write a good, meaningful review of a book written and designed specifically for a child?  I guess I can give you both sides of it here. Let the child in me review it, and then let the 16 year old me review it. Onward!

Child Kailei (5+ but still small):
I really liked Marcy Meets An Alien! The colors were pretty, and I really like that there weren't any words. I really liked the ending, how you didn't think that was going to happen, but it did!


Teen Kailei (16 but still short):
Child me isn't very articulate. As Child Kailei stated, there aren't any words. I imagine that's why it's classified as a "children's 5+ graphic novel". The artwork was beautifully done. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I enjoy dabbling in the art myself...if it wasn't apparent by my many posts featuring my own artwork, so I appreciate good art when I see it. I'll have to ask James if he did it himself.

The way the story progressed was actually very clever. I'm a strong believer that children's books shouldn't be "Jake can run. Jake likes dogs", but rather they should be approached with the same mindset one has when writing a short story, full-length novel, or any other work of literature.

 James made a story, only using pictures, that pulled someone like me, a very seasoned reader, in. He wrote...drew?...in such a way that the plot twist made me say "WOW! That was so clever!".

If I wished, I could go into this long rant about the deeper meaning that the book represents, but this review is already long. Also because I feel as though it's important for you to come to that conclusion yourself. The deeper meaning for me may not be the same deeper meaning that you find. (Note: I also think it's important that children's stories have a deeper meaning. A moral, or a lesson of some sort, maybe?)

That is all, my loves. I'm sorry I've been MIA. Sickness has returned, and with it, headaches and nausea when I try to read. So, for the last three weeks, I've been stuck with Netflix. So much for being ahead on my reviews!! As always, you can find all of the important links below! I hope you enjoyed <3.

Keep your noses in the pages, and I'll blog you lovelies later!
oie_bTJ8xsagIR6l.gif
















Get your copy of Marcy Meets an Alien thorough







Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Book Review: The Devious Debutante (Ursula LeCoeur)

The Devious Debutante
by: Ursula LeCoeur

Genres: Historical, Romance

Beneath the glittering fa├žade of historic mansions and gaslit restaurants, no one tells Maureen Collins what to do. Not her father. Not the old society families of New Orleans. Not even her dead mother, who chose her groom the day her daughter was born. Refusing the husband selected for her, Maureen ventures into a world of lies, disguises and midnight rendezvous—to win the love of Ben Merritt, an intriguing stranger with something to hide. 
Merritt leads a double life. By day he’s a priggish attorney; when the moon rises, he prowls the docks tracking opium smugglers. When he meets Maureen, he suppresses his desire and thinks of her as a useful tool to aid his investigation of her father—his prime suspect.
Each tries to make sense of the other’s peculiar behavior. Maureen concludes Merritt is an opium addict, while Merritt deduces that Maureen and her father are cohorts in a vast smuggling operation. 
As the deceptions multiply, the stakes grow higher. When Maureen’s desperate plan to learn the truth turns deadly, only one man can identify the threads of conspiracy to save her life.
**WE WERE GIVEN A FREE COPY OF THIS BOOK IN EXCHANGE FOR THE FOLLOWING HONEST REVIEW**

The Devious Debutante is a very good book. The writers (they are a mother/daughter team) did their research, so the  moments in the story were accurate to the time period. It was a mystery and a love story. The story was easy to read and the mystery in trying to figure out who the good guys were kept me interested through the book.

The problems with opium smugglers were real in that time, and the way Ben, one of the main characters, investigated it kept you wondering if he was a good guy. The way everyone in the story was looped together in the end was amazing. These writers are very talented.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good love story. I look forward to reading more books by Ursula LeCoeur.

All of the necessary links can be found below.





Get your copy on Amazon
add on Goodreads







Monday, August 22, 2016

Book Review: Death by Diploma (Kelley Kaye)

Death by Diploma
by: Kelley Kaye

Genres: Mystery (Cozy)

Emma Lovett leaves her philandering husband and crosses the country to begin her teaching career at a high school in Pinewood, Colorado.There, she meets Leslie Parker, a fellow teacher given to quoting Shakespeare to fit all situations, and the two become fast friends.

Arriving at work early one morning, Emma discovers the body of the school custodian, a man who reminds her of her late father. When the police struggle to find the killer, the ladies decide to help solve the murder. Their efforts lead them to a myriad of suspects: the schizophrenic librarian, the crude football coach, the mysterious social studies teacher, and even Emma’s new love interest.
As Emma Lovett discovers the perils of teaching high school, she and Leslie learn more than they ever wanted to know about the reasons people kill.
**WE RECEIVED A FREE COPY OF THIS BOOK IN EXCHANGE FOR THE FOLLOWING HONEST REVIEW**

Death by Diploma is classified as a "cozy mystery," which is a term that I had to investigate.  It turns out that "cozies" are books that downplay/put a humorist twist on sex and/or violence.....this book definitely fits the category.  

This one starts out really slow, which means that I almost gave up on it several times.  Emma and Leslie are awesome main characters, but Emma's sometimes HORRIBLE southern dialect drove me insane.  **Note to non-southern authors:  you can't "write" an accent.....it doesn't work.....it isn't close to accurate......and it leaves readers with a bad taste in their mouth (especially those of us who grew up in the south).** 

Once the plot got really interesting (about halfway through the book) I was hooked.  The dedication that the teachers had, to solve the murder of the school custodian, was admirable.  This is the kind of mystery book that didn't give things away until the most perfect moment.  So, although things started out slow, this "cozy" novel was worth the read!

As always, all of the good stuff is listed below.

Until next time.......



Get your copy on Amazon
and don't forget to add it to your TBR list on Goodreads


Thursday, August 18, 2016

Guest Post: Author Rival Gates on 'Being and Author Today'



My father was a magazine and book editor for years.  Getting published was a mountainous task.  Writers didn’t have spell check, word processor programs, email or inexpensive printers to help them in their task.  They used typewriters and dictionaries to produce a manuscript and copy centers to “Xerox” copies to be sent out.  Then they had to research on the phone and at the library to find publishers and more specifically, the editor to whom you would send your work.  After all that you would pay to mail multiple copies out and then wait for months for a letter or phone call which may never come.  At the publisher it was no cakewalk either.  Editors would sift through piles of manuscripts trying to find two or three to fit the slots open in the publishing season.  It all came down to the cover letter.  Getting published was hard but if you were chosen you had all the marketing resources of the company behind you.  The publisher got you reviews and media attention.  They placed your book in big-box book stores and set up media events for you.  Book tours were set up and they held your hand all along the way.
Today the world is far different than the one my late father left behind.  Everyone now has a computer with software that makes writing easier than ever.  When we have a finished product we don’t even print it out.  We research publishers on the net in a few hours or look for an agent.  Then we send out all the emails of our work that we want for free.  Thanks to e-readers, online book sales have grown dramatically over the years as have the number of publishers.  This explosion has allowed many authors to be published who otherwise would not have had a chance under the old system.  Readers have more selection now than any time in history.  Instead of waiting for months for books to be printed, they can now be made available on Amazon.com in days.  When it comes to marketing it’s another story.  My publishers have been kind enough to be of some help with their writer’s publicity.  For the most part, however, you are on your own.  You must balance social media with finding kind blogs like this one who will allow me to come on and promote my latest book.  At the same time, you must find people with the time and willingness to do a book review for you.  Getting into bookstores is solely your responsibility as well.  But the fact remains; you are published!  You have a chance to make your dreams come true.  And it still all comes down to that cover letter.  Even today’s publishers are bombarded with emails.  If they actually take the time to read that paragraph you wrote about your book, you better have something there that grabs them and makes them want to read your manuscript.  Many things changed but this one stayed the same.  Editors only have so much time and patience.  Be sure you latch onto them with that paragraph.  If you don’t, your hard work will end up in the trash folder.





Rival Gates was born in Port Huron, MI and moved to a suburb of Toronto, Canada at age 5 due to his father’s work as an editor.  He was educated through high school in Canada and then returned to the United States for college at Michigan State University.  Rival began working on this series of books at age 13 and spent his life honing the stories to be just right.  The series would be called “The Sapphire Chronicles.”  His first book, “Quest for the Red Sapphire” drew excellent reviews and was followed up by his second book, “The Sapphire Crucible” which was received even better.  Now Mr. Gates has published his third book, “Mandrean Revenge” and plans to carry his readers along on the battle-tested trail of Linvin Grithinshield.  Dreaming of sword fights and perilous journeys he has no trouble finding material for his stories.  And his latest story awaits.







It has been more than 2 years since the half elf, Linvin Grithinshield returned from his life altering quest with the Red Sapphire as his prize in the medieval world of Letheria.  Apart from surviving the regular assassination attempts he thought life had returned to normal.  Far to the north in the Mandrean Empire, however, trouble was festering.  In spite of Linvin’s best efforts, Lord Mandrean the 13th survived their confrontation and has been plotting his reprisal.  With his empire on the verge of revolt he needs a show of force to display his dominance.  Dispatching Linvin in front of his subjects would fill that role most handsomely.  With the help of his evil Necromancer, Mandrean kidnaps Linvin’s Uncle Anvar.  The elderly elf is the closest family Linvin has remaining and has been a father figure to him for much of his life.  The emperor promises to release Anvar only after Linvin has surrendered himself for execution.  Though Mandrean’s word has slight credibility, Linvin is given a terrible decision to make.  With little choice Linvin sees no other option but to set out for the empire.  He cannot delay as Anvar’s life will expire at the first frost of fall.  That will become more troubling by the obstacles he faces along the way.  Can Linvin reach the empire in time to sacrifice himself in Anvar’s place?  Will Lord Mandrean kill them both?  Or maybe, just maybe, Linvin can pull another miracle and save them both.  One way or another, blood will be shed.






Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Book Review: What Does It Mean To Be White In America (Gabrielle David)

What Does It Mean To Be White In America?
by: Gabrielle David

Genres: Non-fiction, Narrative

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE WHITE IN AMERICA? BREAKING THE WHITE CODE OF SILENCE, A COLLECTION OF PERSONAL NARRATIVES, is a collection that asks just that. While the literature on whiteness has long been dominated by an academic point of view, editors Gabrielle David and Sean Frederick Forbes came to the realization that there was an unmet need for an anthology of personal narratives about race and culture from the perspective of white Americans. In this conception process, WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE WHITE IN AMERICA? was born. The first of its kind, this collection of 82 personal narratives reflects a vibrant range of stories from white Americans who speak frankly and openly about race, not only as it applies to people of color, but as it applies to themselves. In answering the question, some may offer viewpoints one may not necessarily agree with, but nevertheless, it is clear that each contributor is committed to answering it as honestly as possible. With an introduction by racial justice educator and writer, Debby Irving, and an afterword by award-winning poet, author and scholar, Tara Betts, the purpose of WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE WHITE IN AMERICA? is to, as Irving points out in her introduction, break the code of silence so that we can engage in frank conversations about race. An invaluable starting point that includes a glossary and a bibliography of suggested reading, WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE WHITE IN AMERICA? is highly recommended for students, teachers and anyone else interested in seeking a deeper and richer understanding of race in America. 
**WE WERE GIVEN A FREE COPY OF THIS BOOK IN EXCHANGE FOR THE FOLLOWING HONEST REVIEW**

I'm not going to lie, my initial thought was that I wouldn't be touching this one with a ten-foot pole. After all, I am a white female who wants nothing to do with the race war currently consuming the country. I grew up in the bible belt, even better a small town in Alabama (that is probably still considered one of the most racist places in the country), and I knew reviewing What Does It Mean To Be White In America? would mean that I'd need to share some of my personal feelings, which I honestly wasn't sure that I wanted to do on CommonBookSense. Then I thought about it....like really thought about it, and realized how absurd that sounded.

What Does It Mean To Be White In America? is a book that every (that's right EVERY) person in this country, regardless of race, should be required to read. PERIOD. It's comprised of 82 stories that were written by white Americans from all over the country. The need for political correctness was waived....and a brilliant collection of much needed thoughts, opinions, and personal reflection was created.

As always you can find all the related links below.

Until next time......












Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Book Review: Resilience in Curls (Natalie Keshing)

Resilience in Cruls
Natalie Keshing
Genre: Memoir


We Begin... 

She waited for him. Not because she loved him but because she was scared of him and what she was contemplating. 

He walked in through the kitchen door wearing his black short sleeved turtleneck and his dark sunglasses. Olive skinned, handsome, slender and buff. Staggering a bit towards her, wanting to give her a kiss. 

The smell of his breath was nauseating. Mr. Playboy full of charm and not much more than that. She turned her face away from him. She rejected him and he felt that deep inside. His succorance for affection rejected. Now asking about the baby. 

Disenchanted 
Was He 
Strung With 
An Easy Burden 
Of His Infuriated Wife 
A Cold Weight 
In His Heart 
Enigmatic and Blasting 
The Fool He was ~ Nat 

"Where's My Lorie?" 

"She's sleeping don't wake her up." 

He staggered back taking his sunglasses off placing them on the kitchen table. Reminding her of his enormous charm when they met asking her to dance. All eyes were on them, turning her rhythmically to the beat in a pirouette like a ballerina grabbing her waist while throwing his head back and smiling. He had center stage with Josephine. It was obvious she was not from the city. Inexperienced with just the charms of a fallacy ready to snatch her. Giving rise to his gilded specious charismatic charm. She was completely pure and very impressionable. 

Walked With Swagger 
Intoxicating Desire 
Among Shadows Dancing 
A Piquant Glance 
Eyes Locked Awakening 
Lascivious Thoughts 
Desire The Craving ~ Nat

I feel like the only way to describe Resilience In Curls would be to say it was jumbled. While reading, I couldn't even find who the main character was.

I kept wondering what Natalie was trying to say to us. Was she randomly throwing sentences together , or was she trying to tell us a story? Where was the story going? I never found answers to these questions.

I honestly think that this book is just pointless. Books are supposed to take you on a journey. You're supposed to hop on this magical adventure with the characters and GO somewhere...This book didn't take me anywhere, and honestly, I don't see any point to you guys picking up a book full of random words and sentences that are just thrown together. This book was one that reminds me why I shy away from memoirs. 

As always, you can make that decision for yourselves. The links will be below.

I'm sorry this review is a little late. I've been sick, so I had to make myself sit down to write this haha. 
Keep your noses in the pages, and I'll blog you lovelies later!  <3

oie_bTJ8xsagIR6l.gif










How old are you guys? We'd like to get an idea of the age-range of people we bring in /\./\




Get your copy through 


Follow Natalie on
or

Books We've Reviewed

Outspoken
Pieces Like Pottery: Stories of Loss and Redemption
Tangled Web
Dead as a Doornail
Where Death Is a Hunter
Mindspeak
Gifted
Not Your Mother's Goose
Undressed To The Nines: A Thriller Novel
Supernaturally
Bees in Loretta's Bonnet
Ukiyo
Strays
Let Love In
Providence
Let The Waves Come In
The Mine
Learning to Swim
Mother
Anissa of Syria


CommonBookSense's favorite books »