“A brutal murder.
There are scratches on Cèsar Hawke’s arms, a discharged Glock on his coffee table, and a dead woman in his bathtub. Yeah, maybe he brought the waitress home for some fun — he was too drunk to remember it — but he knows for a fact that he didn’t kill her. He’s an agent with the Office of Preternatural Affairs. He doesn’t hurt people. He saves them.
The cops disagree. Now Cèsar is running.
The search for a shaman.
Isobel Stonecrow speaks with the dead…for the right price. She brings closure to the bereaved and heals broken hearts. But when she resurrects someone for the wrong client, she ends up on the OPA’s most wanted list.
One risky solution.
Tracking down Isobel is the last case assigned to Cèsar before he bolts. If he finds her, he can prove that he didn’t kill that waitress. He can clear his name, get his job back, and bring justice to the victim.
She’s just one witch. Cèsar has bagged a dozen witches before.
How hard can one more be?”
This guy is a supernatural cop who is really buff. He’s framed for murder, he finds this chick, they go to Helltown, then they find out what happened.
It kept my interest, I guess. I mean, I finished it. I wanted to know what happened.
I liked the witchy part of it, but it did get a little silly with the strength pellets and whatnot.
I read it pretty recently, but it’s already fading. It just wasn’t anything special.
There was a constant oh, I can’t trust this person. Or this person. Or this person. But in the end, everyone was trustworthy, and literally the entire book would have been solved in a single chapter if the guy accused of murder would have just talked to his boss.
I didn’t care about the main character at all. He was pretty blah.
Would I recommend this book?:
No. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t good. It was just bleh. I’d give it a 2.5 out of 5, if I was inclined to ratings. The end left me very unsatisfied.
Amazon Summary: “After a tumultuous year, Sophie Scaife’s relationship with her boyfriend and Dom, billionaire media mogul Neil Elwood, is hotter and happier than ever. His sizzling Dominant side pushes Sophie to new and challenging heights of submission and erotic exploration as she follows her Sir’s every whim. But with his daughter’s impending wedding and a milestone birthday turning Neil’s thoughts toward settling down, Sophie faces a much different future than she’d planned.
Caught in a conflict between her new wealth and her desire for independence, Sophie fears she’s becoming just another Fifth Avenue trophy wife. With her fashion journalism career over and her new effort as a writer uninspiring, Sophie has to work harder than ever to prove her intentions to Neil’s family and friends.
Sophie isn’t the only one struggling to adapt to her new lifestyle. When private jets and designer labels threaten her bond with Holli, Sophie finds herself walking a fine line between the world she now inhabits and the past—and people—she fears she’s left behind. After a shocking revelation divides her loyalties, Sophie is in danger of losing her best friend or fracturing the trust of the man she loves.”
There are like 16 or so weddings ’bout to go down, lots of fighting (or maybe I just perceived it that way, but there was 1 or 2 serious arguments), a terrifying mention of barnyard animals… okay, maybe you should stick to the legit summary to know what’s going on. In three words: Hot kinky sex.
Cheers (possible spoilers):
The sex was lovely, as always.
I really liked that she pointed out the whole Neil-is-bisexual-so-he-could-love-men-as-well thing. It was just a good point.
The plot was okay, not nearly as compelling as the first book in my opinion.
Jeers (possible spoilers):
I know it’s kinda the point, but TOO MANY WEDDINGS. Not all 25(or so, forget their ages but they’re all the same)-year-olds need to be married. I feel like the book set a deadline on when it was acceptable for women to be married.
The fight with Holli was drawn out too much, I think. Especially when she ended up confessing that she knew the whole time that it wasn’t Sophie who got her fired. Like I would’ve never talked to Holli again for being such an irrational bitch. That’s an abusive relationship right there.
It just wasn’t as strong as the first two books. I think the author mentioned that it was supposed to be this book and the next book combined in one but there was too much material so she ended up stretching the plot a little thin rather than cramming too much in there together.
The handbag. Seriously. SERIOUSLY.
Would I recommend it?: Still yes. While not as strong as the other books in the series, it was still a fun read. Lots of sex and all that jazz. There’s also a bonus scene between Neil and Emir at the end (though if you want to read that without buying it just look up “The Hook Up”, it’s free).
“Alexandria Findahl was five years old when she decided her future; she was going to follow in her father’s footsteps and become a bard, traveling the country and sharing her musical talent with the world. Her mother rails against her decision and her father is amused, encouraging her once he sees that she really does have talent, maybe even more than he does. The people in her town openly shun her, she has no friends except one, Daniel Thacher, the son of her father’s best friend and a young wizard. As she grows older she realizes that what she thought of as friendship is quickly turning into love, love she can only hope he returns. Spurred on by a steamy kiss shared between them one summer, she finds herself dreaming of a life with him and forgetting, however briefly that she wants to become a bard, that she is not interested in marriage or a life filled with children and boring domestic duties. After he fails to pursue the relationship she realizes she was wrong and renews her vow, determined to become the most famous Bard in all of Adelay.
Three years later she is accepted at the most prestigious Bardic school in the land and firmly on her way, but on the eve of her graduation she finds that her father has gone missing. She finds herself drawn into a deadly world in order to save him. Forced to seek help from Daniel, a member of the secret society that has caused her father so much trouble, she enlists the help of her two new best friends and they set out on a danger-filled journey to save him. Alexandria thought she was over Daniel, but her reaction to him and her inability to forget their one embrace makes her realize she has been living in denial. Daniel has been the only man to encourage her in her dreams and knows secrets about her, some she doesn’t even know, and whenever she looks at him she finds it hard to remember what exactly she was so determined to do. Will she be able to enlist his help and find her father or will she give in to her passion only to find death waiting at the end…”
A girl is going to Bard school and ends up getting drawn into a dramatic death plot of some sort. There are also sex scenes apparently?
I made it to chapter 3 before quitting. That’s something, I guess.
The writing is very juvenile. It’s obvious that this is self-published because no publisher would put this out there in its current state. The phrasing of some things is terrible. It read like the rubbish I wrote when I was 14.
I hate the setting. I thought it was supposed to be like in medieval times (but a fantasy version) but there were doornobs (invented in 1800s) and a “modest” house had two stories and the MC had her own bedroom with a bed and a dresser. The setting just seemed lazy, like the author wanted to write it as fantasy but didn’t want to do it fully. The author told me it was supposed to be an alternate fantasy universe, but I just wasn’t feeling it.
I don’t think Bards made as much money as she seemed to think they did.
The author relied heavily on cliches. Like, “…his gaze was so intense it was almost if he could see into her very soul.” Also, we have a halfling elf, a Mary Sue character, and a lot of focus is put on the ol’ “I’m a girl but I want to be a warrior, not domestic!” shit that gets real tiring after a while.
More on the Mary Sue-ness: She has violet eyes (the author said this would later become relevant, but that didn’t make it better in my opinion), she is SO VERY ATTRACTIVE that all the other girls HATE her out of jealousy… yeah… and she just comes off as a bitch, but an unintentional one.
Do you like tell, not show? Then this is for you. She calls the coachman judgmental for NO REASON and we’re just supposed to accept it because she said it, not because he acts like it. It’s just little things like that.
Finally, the author doesn’t use the Oxford comma. It’s a disgrace.
Would I recommend it?:
Absolutely not. I couldn’t force myself to continue reading. I got a free copy of the book when the author was complaining on Facebook about being turned down for a publisher. She wanted to know if it was bad or if the publisher just turned it down for no reason. Let me tell you, it was bad. Had I paid any money for this I would have been livid. I’m disappointed once again to have to give a bad review to a small publisher (self-publisher, actually). No wonder people have a negative view of indie publishing. (As a side note, the author was very ungracious about receiving an honest critique.)
One Heroine: Jennifer James, burdened by brains, struggling to release her Inner Babe
One High School: London Road Comprehensive, a no-hope English school in a no-hope English town
One Prize: A scholarship to the elite St. Willibald’s College [Jennifer’s idea of Paradise] offered to the winner of a tacky reality TV show, Down The Bog
and . . .
A Thousand Complications: Like Jocasta, the crazy feminist mother; Tallulah, the blond rival from hell; Marcus, the guy with green eyes; and above all, the actual real reality that Jennifer’s chances of winning are less than Mega-Zero.”
So basically, there’s this little nobody girl whose school is put onto a reality TV show. Nobody Girl gets to be one of the students on the reality show and so cameras follow her around at school and she has the chance to win a completely paid scholarship to some rich kid boarding school. Nobody Girl struggles in the competition because she is, essentially, a nobody, but with some help she pulls through and makes it to the end of the competition. Drama, silly names, and even more teenage drama will accompany Nobody Girl as she fights for the prize.
Overall, it’s an amusing read if you don’t think too much about it. It makes fun of reality shows and provides an afternoon’s entertainment (or longer, depending how fast you read).
There are some interesting characters. There were only a few times when a name was mentioned and I had to think hard about who that person actually was, despite the large cast.
It did the diary thing pretty well. You still could feel like it was a real story, but there was a lot of narrating rather than just showing what happened just because of the style.
Jeers (possible spoilers):
Jennifer James is a bit of a Mary Sue. Her only flaw is being bad a gym and being shy and nervous. In my opinion, shyness/nervousness/clumsiness is the first thing writers go to when they realize their female characters have no flaw. The whole time I was a bit annoyed with how generic she was.
Jennifer’s little brother is a prop. Sorry, but I don’t like it when authors add siblings just to give the main character more depth. It’s mentioned once that her little brother is just starting school, then never mentioned again. He’s basically there because she once took him to the park and that helped her interact with a boy.
Jennifer’s parents were having serious martial problems and it’s all solved because Jennifer told her dad to buy her mother flowers. I just wasn’t satisfied by that part of the story. I wanted to know more about her dad, why he was so quiet and more about his job and how the move from Jennifer’s old school affected the family. Her mom went from being INSANE to completely normal from a bouquet of flowers and a concert even though she almost had an affair? It was just all very unrealistic.
I didn’t like the love interest one bit. I just didn’t feel his appeal. I feel like the entire reason that Jennifer chased him was because he had green eyes. That was it. I liked the boy she rejected much more and the way that plot line resolved itself left much to be desired.
The text talk. Oh god, the text talk. Jennifer is supposed to be this really intelligent girl who wants to get into Oxford but she sends txts dat lok lyke dis. No, worse than that, actually. It was painful.
Would I recommend it?:
Only if you could borrow it or buy it cheap. It isn’t high-quality reading, just something to pass the time that you don’t have to think about it. It wasn’t super bad, but it didn’t stand out at all. Overall, it was a novel with an interesting (though unrealistic) premise and a meh execution.