The Traveling Man (The Traveler’s, #1) by Michael P. King – My Review!!

The Traveling Man – My Review!!

The Traveling Man Cover

Every now and then, I like to read a crime thriller. I ran across The Traveling Man (The Traveler’s, #1) by Michael P. King and put it on the TBR list. Here is my review!

Synopsis (from the author):

In a life-and-death contest among criminals, even the most cunning may not survive…

The Traveling Man and his wife have built a life for themselves conning criminals and getting away scot-free. But when their latest scheme to sell contaminated land goes south, they find themselves in a cat-and-mouse game with the crime boss who’s turned the tables on them and the partners who’ve betrayed them.

Are you ready to take a walk on the wild side?

What I liked:

The Traveling Man was a fun read! Lots of action, plot twists, great cons, and betrayals kept me guessing what was coming next. Add to the mix the innocents caught up in the game, the oddly ethical bent of the Traveling Man, and it’s a winning combination.

What I didn’t like:

Despite the good parts mentioned above, the book did bog down a few times as The Traveling Man and his plans fell apart. I had issues with some of the dialogue as well.

Overall impression:

The Traveling Man (The Traveler’s, #1) was an enjoyable read. The cons were flawed enough to be believable, the characters’ amoral enough to pull off their scams, yet Rob (the title character) had an ethical side. If you’re a fan of crime novels, read this one. Please note there is sex, violence, and strong language.

My rating:

4 Stars

Connect with Michael P. King

Find Michael P. King on his Amazon Author Page and his Goodreads Author Page. While you’re there, check out the rest of his books (and maybe buy a couple) and leave him a comment or a review!

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Myths of the Mirror by D. Wallace Peach – My Review!!

Myths of the Mirror – My Review!!

Who doesn’t like dragons? For me, a fantasy novel with dragons will always have a place on my TBR list! When I received the recommendation for Myths of the Mirror (Dragon Soul Quartet #1) I added it to my list. Here is my review!

Synopsis (from the author):

In the distant mountains of the Mirror, exiled skyriders fly dragons in the old Way, merged in flesh, blood, and bone. Twenty years past, they fought for the freedom of the valley’s dragons … and lost.

Imprisoned in the stone lair, the captive dragons beat their webbed wings and thrash serpentine tails. They tear their flesh and batter their bodies against the black bars of their cells, iron grating against iron. The once peaceful creatures howl, tormented by spine and spur, their fury matched only by their despair.

Treasa, the daughter of exiles, seeks the secrets of a hidden past and a father she never knew. Gifted with visions, she glimpses pieces of years long lost and a veiled future that only raises more questions. The dragons visit her dreams, laden with contradictions that tear at her heart—for one day she sails in unfettered flight, her arms thrown wide, and the next she writhes in tortured darkness, desperate to be free.

The lair’s black-garbed riders sense the dragons’ growing savagery. Yet Conall longs to grasp their power, to subdue them and soar. He will endure the reek, filth, and terror of the lair to earn his right to fly. With a heart encased in steel, he masters the weapons of compliance to see his will done. At the cost of the woman he loves.

Then, a curved talon rends flesh and dragon scale, rattling against white ribs. Blood falls like rain and the world shifts. Treasa and Conall must decide who they are and what they stand for. Thus the battle for the dragon soul begins again. Alliances form, old myths are revealed, and new myths are born.

What I liked:

First, I enjoyed this book! The imprisoned dragons fueled much of the story and intertwined everyone’s lives and actions into a great story. The characters were good, the writing flowed smoothly, and the story had a nice pace. Romantic elements abounded throughout the book, which only added to the depth of the tale. All told, Myths of the Mirror (Dragon Soul Quarter #1) was an excellent book!

What I didn’t like:

The only thing I didn’t like in the book was the ongoing lack of communication between Treasa and her mother. I can’t really say much about it without adding spoilers, so you’ll just have to read the book and make your own decision.

Overall impression:

Myths of the Mirror (Dragon Soul Quartet #1) by D. Wallace Peach had all the elements for a great fantasy novel. Good characters, a downtrodden dragon population, romance, intrigue, and a good plot line made it a book I truly enjoyed. If you like fantasy, try this one!

My rating:

5 Stars

Connect with D. Wallace Peach:

Find D. Wallace Peach on her Amazon Author Page or her website. Check out the entire Dragon Soul Quartet and discover more about the author and her books!

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Crystal Escape (Crystal Series Book 4) By Doug J. Cooper – My Review!!

Crystal Escape – My Review!!

Crystal Escape Cover

I read the first three books and the prequel of the Crystal Series, so when Doug J. Cooper released Crystal Escape (Crystal Series Book 4), it hit my TBR immediately. Read on for my thoughts on the latest installment of this great sci-fi series.

Synopsis (from the author):

Lazura, an alien AI completing an Earth reconnaissance mission, is poised to take her data archive home to her Kardish masters. All she needs is a way past Criss, a superior intelligence determined to stop her. And stop her he must, because the information in Lazura’s archive provides the powerful Kardish a roadmap to Earth domination, starting with the subjugation of Criss himself. When Lazura makes a surprise break for her home world, she kidnaps Cheryl Wallace and Juice Tallette, two-thirds of Criss’s leadership, and positions them as human shields to protect her ship. Sid, the final member of the leadership team and Cheryl’s lover, joins Criss in chasing Lazura across the solar system. But can they catch Lazura before she reaches the safety of interstellar space? And can they rescue Cheryl and Juice while also protecting the future of Earth?

What I liked:

As with the other books in the series, Crystal Escape presented a future with space travel, AI, and cool technology. The familiar characters, especially Criss, continue to evolve. Lazura even made me feel a little sorry for her at the end. I liked the interplay among the characters, and the synbods with the lower grade crystals made great additions to the story. Even Lazura, who is less capable than Criss, outsmarted him in her attempt to escape. Overall, a good sci-fi read!

What I didn’t like:

I thought the action on the Aurora was a bit forced and the criminal characters involved with the mining venture could have played a bigger role in the story. Other than that, no complaints from me.

Overall impression:

Crystal Escape (Crystal Series Book 4) by Doug J. Cooper is a nice addition to the series. The familiar characters, continuation of the story, and a lower intelligence AI challenging Criss made for a good book. I recommend this one (and the entire series) to any sci-fi fans!

My rating:

4.5 Stars (rounded to 5 stars)

Connect with Doug J. Cooper:

Find out more about Doug J. Cooper and his books on his website and his Amazon Author page. While you’re there, please consider leaving a comment or a review!

Connect with me:

Find me on the socials and let’s connect. I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest, so say hi and let’s start a conversation!

Minutes Before Sunset (Timely Death #1) – My Review!!!

Minutes Before Sunset (Timely Death #1) – My Review!!

Minutes Before Sunset Cover

Amazon gave me this recommendation, so I checked the blurb. After reading it and a few of the Amazon reviews, I added it to my TBR list. Read on for my thoughts on Minutes Before Sunset (Timely Death #1) by Shannon A Thompson.

Synopsis (from the author):

Two destinies. One death.

“Her kiss could kill us, and my consent signed our death certificates.” 

Eric Welborn isn’t completely human, but he isn’t the only shade in the small Midwest town of Hayworth. With one year left before his eighteenth birthday, Eric is destined to win a long-raging war for his kind. But then she happens. In the middle of the night, Eric meets a nameless shade, and she’s powerful–too powerful–and his beliefs are altered. The Dark has lied to him, and he’s determined to figure out exactly what lies were told, even if the secrets protect his survival.

Jessica Taylor moves to Hayworth, and her only goal is to find more information on her deceased biological family. Her adoptive parents agree to help on one condition: perfect grades. And Jessica is distraught when she’s assigned as Eric’s class partner. He won’t help, let alone talk to her, but she’s determined to change him–even if it means revealing everything he’s strived to hide.

What I liked:

First, the storytelling was excellent. Second, the characters were easy to relate to and reminded me of people I knew those many years ago in high school. Lastly, the dual personas of the shades was an interesting twist. The action held my attention, and Eric and Jessica’s budding attraction added the romantic element. Overall, an enjoyable read!

What I didn’t like:

in spite of how much I enjoyed the characters, Eric’s brooding teen personality was too stereotypical. Other than that little thing, not much to dislike!

Overall impression:

Minutes Before Sunset (Timely Death #1) had all the elements for a good paranormal romance book. Good characters, lots of teen angst, romance, and the background of Eric’s impending fight to save his kind made this one a great start to the series!

My rating:

4.5 Stars (rounded to 5 Stars)

Connect with the author:

Find Shannon A Thompson on her Amazon Author Page or her website. Please consider leaving a review and let her know how much you liked the book(s)! I know she’ll appreciate it!

Connect with me:

Find me on the socials or leave me a comment and let me know your thoughts on my review! I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest or you can drop me an email at bill@williamlstuart.com. Say hi and let’s connect!

The Sapphire of Poseidon by Scott L Collins – My Review!!

The Sapphire of Poseidon – My Review!!

The Sapphire of Poseidon Cover

I read and reviewed the first three books of the Scepter Series by Scott L Collins. When he released The Sapphire of Poseidon (Scepter #4) it immediately went on the TBR list. I’ve finally got to it and I’m glad I did! Read on for my review!

Synopsis (from the author):

With the Emerald and Ruby now reunited with the Scepter of Harmony, the rebellious group of children intent on overthrowing the malevolent King Argyle must face a new challenge: recovering the Sapphire of Poseidon. In order for the full power of the Scepter to be restored, the jewel must be inserted back into the staff.

With Argyle now at war with Queen Kyrie, and his ships scouting the lake to locate her, as well as the realm of the Merfolk, the small band of insurgents must find a way to cross the Great Lake while avoiding not only Argyle’s fleet, but the kraken he’s released in an attempt to draw the Queen of the Lake into battle.

Time is running short as Argyle is sure to figure out their plans for bringing together all the pieces of the Scepter. Once he does, it’ll be a race to recover the remaining gems, and if Argyle finds one first, the fight, and the kingdom, will be lost forever.

What I liked:

As with the other books in the series, following the cast of characters on their adventures is like renewing old friendships. Daniel and his friends travel to recover the Sapphire of Poseidon. Along the way, they make new friends and reunite with old companions. The story is excellent, King Argyle continues to be sufficiently evil, and our heroes’ abilities continue to grow. All in all, The Sapphire of Poseidon is a wonderful addition to the series!

What I didn’t like:

Other than a couple of slow spots, there really wasn’t much to dislike about this one!

Overall impression:

The Sapphire of Poseidon (Scepter #4) is an excellent book! With familiar characters, plenty of action, budding romance, and the evil King Argyle, it kept me entertained! I recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good YA fantasy adventure!

My rating:

5 Stars

Connect with the author:

Find Scott L Collins on his Amazon Author page and his website. Discover more about the author and his books and consider leaving a review for The Sapphire of Poseidon (or any of his other books)! I know he’d appreciate it!

Connect with me:

Please leave a comment if you liked (or didn’t like) my review. Connect with me on social media on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest. You can also drop me an email at bill@williamlstuart.com. I enjoy connecting with new friends. I look forward to meeting you!

Dark Mountain (Eno the Thracian #3) by C.B. Pratt – My Review!!!

Dark Mountain (Eno the Thracian #3) – My Review!!!

Dark Mountain Cover

 

I’ve had this novel on my TBR list for a while. I read the first two books of this series and enjoyed them, so Dark Mountain (Eno the Thracian #3) needed to measure up to those. Read on for my thoughts!

Synopsis (from the author): Welcome to the Ancient World…where the mythology, monsters, and gods are real.

Eno the Thracian sets off to find the truth about himself and his possible descent from the Gods of Olympus. Instead he becomes involved with a race of people kidnapped from their homeland, set to toil endlessly by the will of a mad philosopher.

Facing his own fears and doubts and the curse of the Great God Pan, Eno also finds a woman worthy of his love, danger around every curve, and mushrooms…lots and lots of mushrooms.

Meanwhile, a hidden menace from the dawn of time threatens the civilized world and only Eno the Thracian, Hero for Hire, can stop the inevitable destruction.

What I liked: Dark Mountain (Eno the Thracian #3) entertained me! While perhaps a bit darker than the previous books, this one held all the elements for me. Eno is an excellent hero who embodies the classical hero characteristics. He is mostly humble, willing to take a stand for what is right, and constantly searching for ways to improve himself and the world he inhabits. Such is the case in Dark Mountain. The story is good, too, as we follow Eno trying to make amends with Pan, visit his mother, and follow the quest to the end. All told, I enjoyed the book!

What I didn’t like: As I mentioned above, Dark Mountain (Eno the Thracian #3) was a darker book than the first two of the series. For me, Eno seemed sad and not as vibrant as before and left me a little depressed at the end.

Overall impression: In spite of the darker tone of the book, I liked it! Not as full of the swaggering, boisterous Eno from the first books, it still captured my attention and kept me guessing through the end. If you like a modernized take on Greek mythology, give this one (and the series) a try!

My rating: 4 Stars

Connect with the author: Find C. B. Pratt on her website and her Amazon Author Page and discover her books and more about her! Please consider leaving a review for Dark Mountain (Eno the Thracian #3) or any of her other works.

Connect with me: I always enjoyed hearing from readers of the blog, so leave me a comment or drop me an email at bill@williamlstuart.com. You can find on social media, too! I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest, so stop by say hi, and join the conversation!

The Ghost Chronicles 2 by Marlo Berliner – My Review!!

The Ghost Chronicles 2 – My Review!!

Ghost Chronicles 2

 

I read the first The Ghost Chronicles by Marlo Berliner recently (and gave it 5 Stars in my review) and immediately added The Ghost Chronicles 2 to my TBR list. I wasn’t disappointed!

Synopsis (from the author): What’s there to fear if you’re already dead?
Plenty.
Michael and Sarah now know for certain, there is a destination after death.
They also know they better find their way out of the afterlife fast, before the devil claims Michael’s soul.
What they don’t know?
Before they can get to heaven…
they may just have to go through hell. 

What I liked: As with the first book, we join Michael as he and Sara try to find their way and their individual purposes so they can move on from their ghostly existence. We learn more about each and Tom’s role begins to take shape, although his frequent unexplained disappearances got to be annoying. I enjoyed the characters’ development, the story, and how they reacted to different trials. Will Michael and Sara move on or will they discover why they are still here? Will they give in to their passion? You’ll have to read The Ghost Chronicles 2 to find out!

What I didn’t like: In spite of the elements listed above, the story dragged in places, with a few repetitive scenes. The slow spots didn’t detract from the book much, but it made it a little less enjoyable and I found myself skimming through a few of the battles.

Overall impression: I liked the book and I was quickly drawn into Michael and Sara’s limbo world. The Ghost Chronicles 2 kept me guessing how it would evolve and the roles Michael, Sara, and Tom would play. If you enjoy paranormal romance and ghostly shadow worlds, read this one!

My rating: 4.5 Stars (rounded to 5 Stars)

Do you have your copy of The Ghost Chronicles 2 by Marlo Berliner? If not, what are you waiting for? Once you read it, please consider leaving a review and share it with your friends. I know the author will appreciate it! Surf on over to her site or Amazon Author page to her book and learn more about her!

While you are surfing around, why not leave me a comment on this review (or any others)? I appreciate it too! I also look forward to connecting with new friends on social media. I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest. Stop by and say hi!

The Ghost Chronicles by Marlo Berliner – My Review!!!

The Ghost Chronicles – My Review!!!

Ghost

 

 

Although paranormal books are not usually high on my list, Amazon recommended The Ghost Chronicles by Marlo Berliner. I’m glad Amazon did! Read on for my thoughts.

Synopsis (from the author): Can Michael get to heaven before the devil gets him first, and if it means leaving Sarah is he sure he still wants to go?

Michael Andrews had everything – a loving family, a great girlfriend and a promising basketball career. That was before the accident that took his life. Now, he’s a ghost, wandering among the living, struggling to understand why he’s stuck. All he wants is to move on.

That is until he meets Sarah, an attractive young girl who died just as tragically as he did. The only trouble is falling in love and binding oneself to another soul is forbidden, for it may keep one or both of the souls bound to earth for longer than they should be.

To make matters worse, there’s also a danger in going too far with Sarah, because the “joining” of two souls in the afterlife is also strictly forbidden and they don’t know what will happen if they do go that far. Each time they touch they can feel the boundaries of their energies slipping perilously into one another.

Things get even more complicated as Michael learns he’s being pursued. Demons are after him because he’s a marked soul, a soul the devil wants very badly for some unknown reason.

So, maybe falling in love in the afterlife isn’t such a good idea.

Inspired by the legend of a haunting at the Angel of the Sea bed and breakfast in Cape May, NJ.

What I liked: The Ghost Chronicles was an interesting book. Paranormal to be sure, the novel deals with the death of Michael, his inability to move on from a limbo-like state, and his budding romance with Sara (another ghost who can’t move on). Michael’s character and his struggles drew me in and the mystery around Tom and his frequent disappearances added a nice element to the story. Michael’s family’s grief and the impact of his death seemed real. Michael and Sara’s relationship was a nice romantic addition. Overall, an excellent read!

What I didn’t like: Despite everything I liked, The Ghost Chronicles dragged for me in places, especially when Michael visited his home after his death and his repeated encounters with the demons trying to capture him. I thought there could have been fewer demon battles.

Overall impression: The Ghost Chronicles by Marlo Berliner was an excellent read! Well-written, filled with characters easy to relate to, nice bits of romance, plenty of action, and enough mystery and intrigue to keep me turning the pages. I recommend the book to anyone who enjoys paranormal romances!

My rating: 5 Stars

Connect with the author:

Is The Ghost Chronicles on your TBR list? If so, please consider leaving a review. If not, why are you waiting? Please don’t forget to stop by Marlo Berliner’s Amazon Author page and website to find out more about her and her books!

Connect with me:

If you have time, leave me a comment on this review. If you don’t have time for that, email me at bill@williamlstuart.com or connect with me on the socials. I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest. I’d love to know what you think about my reviews!

Finding the Fountain of Youth by C. A. King – My Review!!

Finding the Fountain of Youth – My Review!!

Fountain

 

 

Another recommendation from Amazon in this week’s review. Today, it’s the fantasy novel Finding the Fountain of Youth (Shattering Effects of Time Book 1) by C. A. King.

Synopsis (from the author): The Shinning boys have always followed the straight and narrow path through life – never deviating from the course for the greater good, but never fully applying their abilities to fight for it either. That all changed the day their younger sister became the victim.
The problem: the villain they have to face to save her is time itself.
The only possible solution: a handful of myths about artifacts believed to have the ability to reverse the grip of time.
Their one lead sets them on a quest to find an ancient civilization of Mermaids to unlock the secrets of the Fountain of Youth. What they discover along the way is more than they could have ever anticipated. The three boys will come face-to-face with their own demons as they are forced to make a choice. What price are they willing to pay to save their sister?

What I liked: Finding the Fountain of Youth had many of the elements I like in a story, good characters, an epic quest, a villain or two, and intrigue. Jessie and Nadine provide the romantic element, the professor is both unlikable and mysterious, and the search for the mermaids to save the brothers’ sister is a good quest. The book had plenty of action and I particularly enjoyed the voyage to recover the treasure chest. Overall, a fun read!

What I didn’t like: Despite all the good things listed above, the story dragged in spots. Additionally, a better explanation of the brother’s magic would have improved the story for me.

Overall impression: Finding the Fountain of Youth (Shattering the Effects of Time Book 1) by C. A. King was an enjoyable book. A good story, nice elements of romance, mythology, and fantasy, along with lots of action kept me entertained. I would recommend this one to fantasy readers everywhere.

My rating: 4 Stars

Connect with the author:

Have you found Finding the Fountain of Youth by C. A. King? What about her other books? If you have (or plan to), please consider leaving a review! Don’t forget to visit C. A. King’s Amazon Author page and her website to discover more about the author.

Connect with me:

While you’re at it, consider leaving a comment about this review, drop me an email at bill@williamlstuart.com, or connect with me on the socials! I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest. I look forward to meeting new friends!

Halfway Drowned by Terry Maggert – My Review!!

Halfway Drowned – My Review!!!

Drowned

 

Readers of my blog and reviews know I’ve read the first three books of the Halfway Witchy series by Terry Maggert and enjoyed them immensely. When Mr. Maggert released the latest in the series, Halfway Drowned (Halfway Witchy Book 4), it went directly to my TBR list. Here is my review!

Synopsis (from the author): A magical storm. An ancient shipwreck. A hidden evil.
All three are tied together as Carlie must defend Wulfric against his past, which emerges after a raging storm tears across Halfway Lake.
When government agents descend on Halfway to investigate the mysterious shipwreck, Carlie discovers that all is not as it seems.

A thousand years old, the Viking ship holds bones. And secrets.
Not everyone went down with the ship. There were survivors, but they might be less than human. They cross paths with Carlie in a showdown that will bring her own secrets to light, for saving Wulfric came with a cost. Now, it’s time for her to pay.

Dive in with Carlie as she fights to save the one person she can’t lose.
Herself.

What I liked: As with the other books in this series, I enjoyed the story. Carlie is her usual spunky self, and Wulfric lends both a romantic and somewhat comical relief. Granny is Carlie’s anchor and the citizens of Halfway provide an excellent supporting cast. The evil that comes to halfway from the shipwreck fits the bill perfectly, and the nerdy government agent develops into a likeable character. Overall, a Halfway Drowned is a good entertaining book.

What I didn’t like: I never quite grasped the purpose of Officer Domari. Additionally, this book dragged a little for me in places.

Overall impression: Despite the items mentioned above, I enjoyed this book. With familiar characters, good storytelling, and waffles, how can you go wrong? I’d recommend this one to anyone who’s read the first three and recommend the series to anyone who enjoys excellent books!

My rating: 4.5 Stars (rounded to 5 stars)

Connect with the author:

Witch (see what I did there) of the Halfway Witchy books by Terry Maggert have you read? I hope the first three so you will be primed to read Halfway Drowned (Halfway Witchy Book 4).Please consider leaving a review when you finish each. Don’t forget to visit Terry Maggert’s Amazon Author page and his website to discover his many books!

Connect with me:

If you enjoyed the review (or didn’t), leave me a comment and let me know. If you’d like, connect with me on the socials, too. I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest. Stop by and say hi or shoot me an email at bill@williamlstuart.com!