Category Archives: Book Reviews

Awakened (Vampire Awakenings) by Brenda K. Davies – Book Review

awakened

Genre: Paranormal Romance

ISBN: 1479370118

ASIN: B008S2DDU6

Number of Pages: 387

Book Description: Traumatized by her past, and struggling to move on from it, Sera has spent the past three years of college hiding herself from the world and content to stay that way. A chance encounter with Liam shatters her sheltered world, leaving her stunned and shaken by the strange feelings and emotions he arises in her, feelings she never thought she would experience and that frighten her in their intensity. Harboring a dark and deadly secret of his own, Liam knows that he should stay away from Sera; that he will only bring her more hurt, but he is irresistibly drawn to her and unable to deny himself the pleasure that only she can bring to him. But when their pasts collide with their present, and Liam’s true nature is revealed, will their love for each other be enough, or will they be torn apart forever?

Excerpt:

“Who’s that?”

Mike lifted his head from the keg to blink at him in surprise. “Where?” he inquired as he thrust another beer into Liam’s hand.

“The girl with Michelle, who is she?”

Mike’s gaze followed his. He chuckled under his breath as he smiled softly. “That, my firned, is Serendipity, or sera. Forget it you’ll never get close to her.”

Liam raised an inquiring eyebrow as he took a sip of beer. “Really?”

“Yep. No one ever has.”

He shot Mike a questioning look. “No one?” he asked in surprise. The girl was beautiful; he highly doubted that she had any problem attracting men. Even now, there were a bunch of guys hovering around her like moths to a flame.

Mike turned to him, his soft blue eyes intense as he nodded. “As far as I know she’s never dated anyone on campus, and I’ve never seen her with a guy.”

“But she comes to Frat parties?”

“She comes with her roommate, and she leaves with her roommate, or by herself.”

“Is she a lesbian?” He certainly hoped not, but it was a possibility.

“Never heard or saw anything like that either. Leave her be Liam.”

His brow furrowed as he turned to stare at Mike in disbelief. “Why, because she turned you down?” he quipped.

Mike lifted a blond eyebrow and shook his head. “I’ve never tried.”

Liam started to laugh as he shook his head. “Yea right. I know you there’s no way that you wouldn’t try with someone like her!”

Mike shook his head and bent to refill his cup. “Seriously, I haven’t.”

Liam stared at him in astonishment. He knew Mike as well as he knew himself, and he knew he had every intention of trying with her. He didn’t believe Mike for one moment. Mike seized his cup and bent to refill it. “Why not?”

Mike shrugged as he shoved the cup back into Liam’s hand. “I don’t know. I mean she’s hot, don’t get me wrong, but…”

“But what?”

He shrugged again as he ran a hand through his disheveled hair. “I don’t know. We had Trig together last year, she helped me out a lot. I couldn’t have passed the class without her, you know how I am with math, but there’s something about her…” his voice trailed off as he frowned thoughtfully.

Liam sensed that there was more, that Mike had used his amazing powers of deduction on the girl, and hadn’t liked what he’d discovered. “What about her?” Liam prodded.

Mike’s frown deepened as he turned troubled eyes to Liam. “Honestly, it’s almost as if she’s scared of something.”

Book Review: 5/5

I love the third party omniscience POV of this novel. It allows the reader to get firmly entrenched into the minds of the characters as they take shape and interact with one another. I love Liam as the alpha vampire male who’s saving Serendipity, the human damsel in distress.

Sometimes I am disappointed with free books because they are short and are over far too quickly. Not so with Awakened. With 387 pages, it’s a nice long ride with plenty of twist and turns.

A great read. I’m looking forward to the second book in the series, Destined (Vampire Awakenings)

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Nameless by Joe Conlan – Book Review

Genre: Fiction, Mystery, Psycho-drama

ISBN: 0989038009

Number of Pages: 364

Purchase Link: Amazon

Book Description: Chilling and taut, NAMELESS, introduces a fresh and exciting twist on the deadly game of cat and mouse. By virtue of one impulsive and deeply human, but all too grave mistake, a good and decent man finds himself pitted against the embodiment of evil and threatened with losing everything and everyone he loves and values; including the pristine reputation he has endeavored all his adult life to establish.

FBI Special Agent in Charge Daniel Falcone unwittingly steps onto course for a head-on collision with a frighteningly brilliant psychotic serial killer, whose harrowing childhood abuse and neglect left him devoid of humanity and salivating for revenge. Framed for a brutal murder on a commercial cruise ship, and fighting for the right to raise his sons and clear his name, Falcone races against the clock and struggles to keep his eyes on the prize, even while his profound guilt and self-loathing threaten to destroy him faster than his maniacal adversary.

Excerpt: In the entirety of Shem’s life, there was only one other instance when he felt any sense of desire for closeness to another human being. It happened upon his very first opportunity to venture outside of his mother’s apartment when he was nine years old. In a drugged and drunken stupor, Cherie Tucker forgot to lock the door when she left the apartment to meet with her crack dealer. The boy, aware of his mother’s mistake, took full advantage of his opportunity, though not without trepidation. He felt a nervous excitement as he opened the door and walked out into the dark, dank hallway of the seventy-year-old building. When he encountered the staircase, he almost turned back. Instead, his curiosity got the best of him and he descended the steps in a deliberate manner, keeping a firm grip on the banister, taking excessive care not to fall.

About the Author: Joe Conlan is a retired lawyer. He was born in Nassau County, Long Island, New York. He has lived most of his life in Florida, the great majority in the Fort Lauderdale area. He received his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Florida and practiced law as a trial attorney for 15 years. Three of those years were spent as a prosecutor in the Broward County State Attorney’s Office.

He now lives in Jacksonville, Florida. He has two grown children. When he is not writing, he enjoys reading, traveling and spending time with his two female Rhodesian Ridgebacks.

Website: http://joeconlan.com/

Book Review: 5/5

Wow!!! Where do I start? First, if you have a low tolerance for violence, graphically described murders and murder scenes, this book is not for you. However, if you desire to read a murder mystery in which you already know who the killer is and you enjoy reading third party omniscient tales where everything is described for you in full details that will definitely allow you to engross yourself in the scenery, then you should read Nameless!

The third party omniscient perspective of this psychopathic murder mystery allows the reader to see into the minds of all the characters as you watch the puzzle pieces that consist of the maniacal killer, FBI, local law enforcement, and the victims be strategically moved about and placed where the author intends. Third party omniscience is a tough perspective to pull of expertly, and Conlan delivers with perfection.

From a psychological standpoint, the reader is allowed to see the effects of nature and nurture upon Shem. He didn’t stand a chance, and you will know exactly why. From the audience perspective, you almost feel bad for all he has had to endure and the fact that he managed to survive. But your sympathy doesn’t last long as the author allows you through omniscient perspective to enter the mind of Shem as his victims look into his cold and lifeless eyes. If you can stomach the graphic nature of murder scenes, you will not be disappointed as you will see with dramatic and detailed imagery each of Shem’s victims last moments and breaths.

Since murder mysteries are not my go-to for reading material, it took me a little longer to adapt to imagery of the book and immerse myself, but this is of no fault to the author. Conlan does a fantastic job and by the second chapter, it was hard to put the book down. By the last three or four chapters, I was dreaded having to leave the fictional world Conlan had spun in order to deal with the callings of life.

If you would like a free review of your novel, please visit my website to see review guideline submissions.

Did you know that I am an author of Christian Romance novels? View Books by Valcine