Tess and Tattoos by H. A. Leuschel #BookReview @HALeuschel

The Amazon version of this book (mobi format) was available for free; it is also part of H. A. Leuschel’s ‘Manipulated Lives‘.

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

A suspenseful and emotional novella exploring whether we can ever be free from our past mistakes.

In this story, the reader is taken on a compelling journey into the human mind where genuine friendship offers the key to inner peace.

Meet Tess, an elderly lady living in a care home apartment in the outskirts of Edinburgh, whose past is haunted by a wrong decision. She meets Nurse Sandra, a warm and bubbly single mother of three, who is instantly intrigued by Tess’s personality and the mystery that surrounds her.

‘Tess and Tattoos’ is one of five gripping stories in HA Leuschel’s story collection Manipulated Lives centred around psychological manipulation

.

Genre(s): Kindle Short Reads
> 90 minutes (44-64 pages) > Literature & Fiction
Kindle eBooks
> Literature & Fiction > Short Stories > Single Authors
Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Suspense > Psychological
Series: n.a.
Length: 61 pages
Release date: 2017-05-29

 

Teaser


‘Good morning, Tess.’ She knew instantly on hearing the voice that it did not sound familiar. She was probably about to meet a new member of staff, she thought. The woman entering the living room was in her mid-thirties with an energetic step and friendly smile and eyes that conveyed sympathy. Oh well, Tess told herself, that is a good start. The nurse’s uniform was light blue and her shoes squeaked as she walked over to Tess, holding a clipboard. There was something different and fresh about this particular nurse and Tess didn’t think it was due to the brand-new shoes or what looked like an only recently unwrapped and perfectly ironed uniform. It was hard at the best of times to explain why one was drawn to certain people and not at all to others. Was it the smell? The sound of their voice or … Before she could finish her thoughts, the nurse’s hand reached out to take hers.


My Opinion

This story introduces you to Tess, living in a care home, as well as to Sandra, the new nurse.

With Tess and Tattoos, H. A. Leuschel has created a highly remarkable story about how one human has been manipulated – and how this has affected also the lives of others. Helene Leuschel delicately introduces her characters, revealing the story with utmost care. The main characters are complex – as well as believable. The story got under my skin; it is excellently written and has the right flow. This story and the persons therein certainly will not leave you unaffected.

This is a book for you if you like great storytelling, compelling stories, psychology, shorter reads, and food for thought.

Highly recommended.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen:
Violence :mrgreen: – 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen:

 

About the author

Helene grew up in Belgium where she gained a Licentiate in Journalism & Communication, which led to a career in radio and television in Brussels, London and Edinburgh.

She now lives with her husband and two children in Portugal and recently acquired a Master of Philosophy with the OU, deepening her passion for the study of the mind. When she is not writing, Helene works as a freelance journalist and teaches Yoga.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Tess and Tattoos?  Or – if you did not yet read Tess and Tattoos – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

 

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Refugees (Mud, Rock, and Trees, #1) by R. A. Denny #RBRT #BookReview

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (epub format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

“An epic journey of a lifetime.” That’s what three young individuals from three different corners of the world have dreamed about. They were destined for greatness since the moment they were born. But what if they don’t want it? What if they’re not ready? What if their desires no longer align with the prophecy?

The problem is, they have no choice. The star has appeared. Their destiny has already begun to unfold.

It’s not the send-off that they’ve been dreaming of. Forced out. Banished. Raided. This wasn’t how it was supposed to be. Now they must discover who they really are while embarking on the most exciting journey of their lives. One star. One impossible task. One chance to save the world they love.

 

Genre(s): Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy
> Fantasy > Myths & Legends > Greek & Roman
> Fantasy > Metaphysical & Visionary
Kindle eBooks > Teen & Young Adult
> Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Coming of Age
Series: Mud, Rock, and Trees, #1
File size: 288 pages
Release date: 2017-04-09

 

Teaser


“If you move Baskrod, it must be done carefully,” the young herbalist warned.

“I have no choice,” I said.

Once again the wife of the bearded man came to my assistance. “We must do as he says,” she said. “There are mysteries here beyond our understanding.”


My Opinion

This book introduces you to Baskrod and the three young people who have to fulfill the prophecy.

With Refugees, R. A. Denny has created a captivating, sometimes a little gory story with plot lines for Amanki, Moshoi, and Brina. It took a few chapters to get into the story, to get used to the different characters and their plot lines. After ‘meeting’ all of them, I was drawn into the story as a close invisible companion. R. A. Denny created a quite intriguing adventure with individual plot lines – certainly meant to introduce the main characters and how their quests began. The characters develop nicely; I am looking forward to learn more about them.

This is a book for you if you like young adult fantasy series, intriguing suspense, believable characters, and young heroes-to-be on a quest.

Recommended.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV Alternating persons – past tense (first person – if chapters are on Amanki, Moshoi, or Brina, otherwise third person)
Language :mrgreen:
Violence 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen:

 

About the author

R.A. Denny is an ancient history buff with a law degree from Duke University. While working as a criminal prosecutor by day, she escaped by night to create the fantasy world of her Mud, Rocks, and Trees series.

R.A. Denny loves adventure, animals and history. She has travelled to the ancient rock city of Petra on horseback, flown through the jungles of Costa Rica on zip lines and visited the Great Pyramid on a camel. She lives in Delaware. As a child, she had two pet flying squirrels.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Refugees?  Or – if you did not yet read Refugees – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Karen_RBRT

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

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Hiding by Jenny Morton Potts #RBRT #BookReview @jmortonpotts

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

A gripping psychological thriller with chilling twists, from a unique new voice.

Keller Baye and Rebecca Brown live on different sides of the Atlantic. Until she falls in love with him, Rebecca knows nothing of Keller. But he’s known about her for a very long time, and now he wants to destroy her.

This is the story of two families. One living under the threat of execution in North Carolina. The other caught up in a dark mystery in the Scottish Highlands. The families’ paths are destined to cross. But why? And can anything save them when that happens?

Genre(s): Kindle eBooks
> Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Suspense
> Teen & Young Adult
Books
> Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Thrillers & Suspense > Suspense
Series: n.a.
File size: 325 pages
Release date: 2018-02-01

 

Teaser


‘You need to be a little north of there. Pack a sweater. You’re going to the Scottish Highlands.’

Keller sipped his Mountain View and pulled the dossier around so that he could read the right way up. Blonk seemed uncomfortable that the file was out of his control.

‘Can you let me have access to the trace software, Mr Blonk? I’ll pay extra of course.’

*** *** ***

Rebecca smiled at the lady and she scrolled down till she found her parents’ names but she didn’t find what she expected. They weren’t calling her mum and dad The Browns. They were calling her parents Julia and Stephen Seawhite.


My Opinion

This book introduces you to the plot lines covering Rebecca and her family, and Keller Baye.

With Hiding, Jenny Morton Potts has created a quite intriguing mystery, starting with two plot lines. It is at first on the slowish side, introducing the main characters and pieces of their pasts. After a few chapters, the story settles at a good and steady pace. Jenny Morton Potts created a good suspense story with some twists, and more insights in Keller’s motives. I did not get close to the characters – I followed them and their stories from a comfortable distance. I wanted to learn the reason why, even if I could not get very close to any of the events. Even if the story did not fully meet my expectations, it is a good read with believable characters, interesting turns, and a good flow.

This is a book for you if you like suspense with interesting turns and sidelines, believable characters, and if you appreciate the art of forgoing excessive details.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady, slow
POV Third person – past tense
Language 😳
Violence 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen: – 😳

 

About the author

Jenny Morton Potts was born in a smart, dull suburb of Glasgow where the only regular excitement was burglary. Attended a smart, dull school where the only regular excitement was the strap. Worked in smart, dull sales and marketing jobs until realising she was living someone else’s life.

Escaped to Gascony to make gîtes. Knee deep in cement and pregnant, Jenny was happy. Then autism and a distracted spine surgeon who wanted to talk about The Da Vinci Code, wiped out the order. Returned to wonderful England – and unlikely ever to leave again – Jenny, with assistance from loyal hound, walked and swam her way back to manageable health.

Jenny would like to see the Northern Lights but worries that’s the best bit and should be saved till last. Very happily, and gratefully, partnered for 28 years, she ought to mention, and living with inspirational child in Derbyshire.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Hiding?  Or – if you did not yet read Hiding – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Karen_RBRT

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

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The Hat by C.S. Boyack #RBRT #BookReview @Virgilante

The author sent me an ARC of this book (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

Lizzie St. Laurent is dealing with many of the struggles of young life. She lost her grandmother, and her living arrangements. Her new roommate abandoned her, and she’s working multiple jobs just to keep her head above water.

She inherits an old hat from her grandmother’s estate, but it belonged to her grandfather. This is no ordinary hat, but a being from an alternate dimension. One with special powers.

Lizzie and the hat don’t exactly hit it off right away, but when her best friend’s newborn is kidnapped by a ring of baby traffickers, Lizzie turns to the hat for help. This leads her deep into her family history and a world she’s never known.

Lizzie gives up everything to rescue the babies. She loses her jobs, and may wind up in jail before it’s over. Along the way, she and the hat may have a new way of making ends meet.

Humorous and fun, The Hat is novella length. Wonderful escapism for an afternoon.

Genre(s): Kindle eBooks
> Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Superhero
> Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Paranormal & Urban
Books
> Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Superheroes
Series: n.a.  [In my opinion: Hopefully the first in a series!]
Length: 116 pages
Release date: 2018-01-11

 

Teaser


“What makes you think it stands for Elizabeth?”

“What else would it – my grandfather’s name was Edmund.”

“You’re sharper than you look. Drop me on the sofa, and I’ll tell you a little story.”

Lizzie gingerly placed the hat on the sofa and sat in the rocker.


My Opinion

This book introduces you to Lizzie St. Laurent, working several jobs to pay the bills.

With The Hat, C. S. Boyack presents us with a hilarious paranormal suspense story in novella length. The story is skillfully elaborated and has a great flow. Ernest Hemingway once stated “When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.” C. S. Boyack shows this masterly with this story – he created living people instead of mere characters; even if the hat is not human – it has personality. I was drawn into the story right away, very close to Lizzie and – the hat. I could easily envision the characters and locations. I had a wonderful time reading The Hat. It is a highly enjoyable read – hopefully the first in a series.

This is for you if you like stories in novella length, paranormal events, hilarious moments, superheroes, and very likeable characters to cheer on.

This is a book to read again. Highly recommended!

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful, fun
Pace Steady
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen: – 😳
Violence 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen:

 

About the author

I was born in a town called Elko, Nevada. I like to tell everyone I was born in a small town in the 1940s. I’m not quite that old, but Elko has always been a little behind the times. This gives me a unique perspective of earlier times, and other ways of getting by. Some of this bleeds through into my fiction.

I moved to Idaho right after the turn of the century, and never looked back. My writing career was born here, with access to other writers and critique groups I jumped in with both feet.

I like to write about things that have something unusual. My works are in the realm of science fiction, paranormal, and fantasy. The goal is to entertain you for a few hours. I hope you enjoy the ride.

Craig

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about The Hat?  Or – if you did not yet read The Hat – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Karen_RBRT

rosies-book-review-team-1


10 Statements – C. S. Boyack

Review:  Wild Concept

Review:  Arson

Review:  Will O’ the Wisp

Review:  Panama

Review:  The Cock of the South

Review:  The Experimental Notebook of C.S. Boyack

3 Quotes – C.S. Boyack

Review:  The Playground

Review: The Experimental Notebook of C.S. Boyack II

 

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The Maori Detective by D. A. Crossman #RBRT #BookReview @crossmanDA

 

The author sent me an ARC of this book (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Plot
(by Goodreads)

He’s lost his wife, his job, and his mana. So what now? A PI? He really couldn’t get used to it. Traipsing around after unfaithful wives and little old ladies’ lost dogs? Was this the future for Carlos Wallace? And what of the beautiful matakite? Wasn’t it a sin to fall in love with your cousin?

Carlos has spent thirteen years living in Australia, eight of them as a serving officer with the New South Wales Police. But when he kills a man in the line of duty, Carlos’ life begins to unravel. His wife is subsequently murdered in mysterious circumstances, and Carlos is dismissed from the force. A devastated Carlos returns home to his Christchurch whānau and takes up a job as a private detective.

When Carlos investigates the disappearance of a young French girl, missing since the February earthquake, the detective becomes embroiled in a sinister conspiracy. Carlos must solve the case, and pick up the pieces of his life among the ruins of a devastated city.

Genre(s): Kindle eBooks
> Literature & Fiction > Contemporary Fiction
Books
> Literature & Fiction
Series: n.a.
File size: 256 pages
Release date: 2017-09-12

 

Teaser


‘Great,’ Carlos said.

‘Ever thought you might be in the wrong line of work?’ asked Ginny.

‘Lately, yes.’

‘So, why don’t I come too? I think you need help on this one.’

Carlos raised his eyebrows. ‘I don’t think so. You stick to the research, Miss Andrews, and leave the fieldwork to me.’

‘Look, Mir Wallace, I’m your assistant, not your office girl. I also have a company car, remember?’


My Opinion

This book introduces you to Carlos Wallace and Virginia ‘Ginny’ Andrews, brought together to run Prince Investigations.

With The Maori Detective, D. A. Crossman has created a detective story combining several plot lines. It is at first on the slowish side, introducing the main characters and their pasts. After a few chapters, the story settles at a nice and steady pace. D. A. Crossman created a good suspense story with some twists, action, and interesting insights in the Maori culture. Focus is not on procedurals, rather on solving cases. I enjoyed the story, even if I could not get very close to it – I felt rather distant. It is a good read with believable characters, interesting turns, and a good flow.

This is a book for you if you like suspense with interesting turns and sidelines, believable characters, and if you appreciate the art of forgoing excessive details.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen: – 😳
Violence 😳
Sexual content :mrgreen: – 😳

 

About the author

David (D.A.) Crossman is a novelist and short story writer with a passion for flawed detectives, sinister spies, and femme fatales. English on his father’s side and Norwegian on his mother’s, David was born in South Africa and raised in South East London. David spent a number of years as an itinerant worker and he has resided in France, Israel, India, and Australia before settling down in rural New Zealand where he now lives with his family and their clowder of cats.

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about The Maori Detective?  Or – if you did not yet read The Maori Detective – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Karen_RBRT

rosies-book-review-team-1

 

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