Dream Giver (Dream Runners: Book 4) by Ann Hunter

Publisher: Rebel House Ink

Date of publication: April 1st, 2022

Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia

Series: Dream Runners

Dream Shatter—Book 1 (review here)

Dream Runner—Book 2 (review here)

Dream Watcher—Book 3 (review here)

Dream Giver—Book 4

Dream Rising—Book 5

Dream Legacy—Book 6

Purchase Links: Kindle

Goodreads Synopsis:

Members of Anyone have gone missing.

The Circle is still determined to take down the rebel faction, Anyone, by any means necessary. After infiltrating The Capitol, Logan and Reina are shocked to find their comrades are being kidnapped, then returned– chipped, forcing them to come to heel beneath The Circle’s thumb.

The only way to level the playing field is to destroy the devices controlling the people. Logan and Reina must set out to find the small, hidden tech, and disable the chips that are turning friends into foes. The only problem? There’s a mole in the ranks of their allies revealing the duo’s next move before they can act.

Can Logan and Reina uncover the traitor before The Circle forces Anyone to destroy itself?

Fans of The Matrix, Inception, and The Giver have been dreaming of this series for a long time coming.

First Line:

I am Logan ve Elehna. I’ve killed two men.

Dream Giver by Ann Hunter

Plot Synopsis (as spoiler free as I can get):

Dream Giver starts immediately after the shocking and heartbreaking events of Dream Watcher. Kendall Kent, Logan’s father, has chipped Reina and is trying to force Logan into leaving Anyone, the rebel faction. But Logan refuses and gets away with Reina. Soon after, Logan and his team take over the building where Logan used to work. They discover that The Circle has nefarious use for the chipped and are horrified to see it in action. They also find a traitor in their midst—someone reporting back to The Circle and telling them Anyone’s plans. Logan, Reina, and their allies must not only find out who the traitor is, but they need to destroy the devices that control the chips. Can they destroy the chips before The Circle forces Anyone to destroy themselves? And who is the traitor?

Main Characters

Logan Kent: Logan is the son of Kendall and Naressa Kent, two high-ranking officials in The Circle. He is also the biological son of Elehna, the head of a rebel group called Anyone. Logan has discovered the truth about his birth in the previous books. In Dream Giver, he works with Elehna and Anyone to free The Capitol from The Circle. Logan has matured throughout the books but still does act impulsively. He is a natural ambassador and has brought Anyone and the Duners together to fight for The Capitol (even though the Duners might not be entirely on his side).

Reina: Reina is a medicine thief whom Logan met in Dream Shatter. She is a member of Anyone and is willing to do whatever it takes to keep her people free and unchipped. Reina showed Logan that Anyone isn’t the monstrous rebel faction that The Circle has been portraying. In Dream Giver, Reina has finally recovered from her numerous injuries and being chipped. Reina is with Logan when the chipped Anyones are turned into zombies. She is turned but, with the help of an old friend, is brought out of kill mode.

Kendall Kent: Kendall doesn’t become a significant part of the plotline until this book. He is portrayed as a weak man who defers to his wife, Naressa. But, in Dream Giver, Kendall shows his true character. He is willing to do anything for his son to keep him safe.

Elehna: Elehna is the head of Anyone’s council on Base Nain. She is also Logan’s biological mother. Elena is helping Logan with trying to take over The Capitol. But she also might have an alternative reason for assisting Logan. Elehna is a voice of reason when Logan is upset. She has a very calm demeanor. Also, I should note that she is chipped. She got chipped in place of Logan, and Naressa has been able to keep tabs on her that way.

My review

Dream Giver is book 4 in the Dream Runners series. You cannot read this book as a standalone. You need to read books 1-3 to understand what is happening in Dream Giver.

Dream Giver is a well-written story that does follow some predictable storylines. I was okay with that and looked forward to the predictability. There were enough unpredictable storylines that kept me on my toes while reading.

The storyline with Logan, his father, what was happening to the chipped rebels, and Reina was harrowing. I didn’t know where this storyline would take me or who would be affected. I understood Logan’s anger and why he acted the way he did at the beginning of the book. But I also liked that Elehna made Logan look at what Kendall did from another angle: as a parent terrified for his child. I was horrified at what The Circle had the chipped rebels do and what Reina almost did to Logan. It made the ending so much more horrifying.

The continuing storyline with Logan and Reina’s budding romance was sweet and a little funny to read in parts. I liked seeing Logan’s feelings towards Reina grow. Of course, the author kept Reina’s feelings under wrap until the very end of the book. All I have to say is what a way to find out!!!

The end of Dream Giver broke my heart. I did not expect the events to unfold the way they did. I also didn’t expect Naressa to make the appearance that she did and didn’t expect her to try what she did. She did get what was coming for her. But, saying that, I think she will be a considerable part of the next book (just a feeling). I hope Logan can get his revenge because if he doesn’t, I might have to drop into the book and do it myself.

I would recommend Dream Giver to anyone over 16. There is violence but no language or sexual situations. There are a couple of scenes where Reina remembers her attempted rape by the Duners. There are also a couple of scenes where the author describes Reina’s chip being overridden and her being forced to hurt Logan.

Many thanks to Ann Hunter for allowing me to read and review Dream Give. All opinions stated in this review are mine.

If you enjoy reading books similar to Dream Giver, then you will enjoy these:

Other books by Ann Hunter:

The Shadow Girls (Natalie Lockhart: Book 4) by Alice Blanchard

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books

Date of publication: July 25th, 2023

Genre: Mystery, Fiction, Mystery Thriller, Thriller

Series: Natalie Lockhart

Trace of Evil—Book 1

The Wicked Hour—Book 2

The Witching Tree—Book 3

The Shadow Girls—Book 4

Purchase Links: Kindle | B&N |AbeBooks | WorldCat

Goodreads Synopsis:

Someone is playing deadly games. Lieutenant Luke Pittman lies in the hospital in a coma after being attacked by one of their own. Veronica Manes, Burning Lake’s most respected modern-day witch, is dead, her murder left unsolved. Natalie Lockhart has become embroiled in a case with threads that become increasingly difficult to untangle.

Now, a new horror is uncovered, one that shocks the town as never before, and the dark, shadowy path forward for Natalie is paved with challenges that haunt her past―Veronica’s unsolved case. Her sister’s traumatic murder. The long-lost disappearance of her old best friend. Natalie’s obsession with finding the truth leads to a twisted, elemental struggle between good and evil―and nothing will ever be the same again.

/.The woods have secrets.

The trees are carved with curses.

There’s something wicked in Burning Lake.

First Line:

Thirty-seven-year-old Stevie Greenway drove across town to Murray’s Halloween Costumes and parked in the sprawling let behind the sooty brick building.

The Shadow Girls by Alice Blanchard

If you have followed this blog for any length of time, you know how much I dislike reading books out of order (if they are in a series). If I come across a book that interests me, I usually shelve it and then pick up book one in the series. But, when it comes to reviewing books, that rule becomes obsolete. That was the case with The Shadow Girls. When St. Martin’s Press emailed me with the review request, I immediately accepted. Then kicked myself when I realized it was part of a series.

The Shadow Girls is book four in the Natalie Lockhart series. You must read the first three books to understand what is happening in this one. The author briefly explained what happened in the previous three books, but I needed more. I was confused when everything came together at the end of the book and was left scratching my head.

The Shadow Girls is a fast-paced book. While I enjoyed the book’s pace and felt it complemented the storyline, I was overwhelmed. The main reason was that I had to backtrack and reread paragraphs and sometimes chapters.

The main storyline in The Shadow Girls centers around Natalie and the 2-3 cases she investigates. The storylines were well written, and I loved how the author connected and interconnected them. But, again, it would have been helpful if I read the previous books.

The storyline involving Natalie, the murder at the Halloween shop, and her investigation was interesting. There weren’t that many twists in this storyline. The only two notable twists came mid-storyline when the author connected this murder to another storyline, and then at the end, it was revealed why the guy was killed. I liked seeing how the investigation was handled, as well as how cold cases were handled. Also, the book’s title comes from this storyline (fun fact!!).

The storyline with Natalie and the investigation into Veronica Manes’s death was well written. I liked the twists and turns this storyline took and its interconnectedness with the other two storylines. I was shocked at how this one ended up.

The storyline with Natalie, her missing best friend, and the investigation/personal issues that stemmed from that was sad. This storyline had the most twists out of the three main storylines. I was surprised at every single thing that was uncovered.

The end of The Shadow Girls was a chaotic mess. It seemed like every single storyline was solved, but I am a little skeptical. I hope there will be a book five because I would love to see more of the town.

I would recommend The Shadow Girls to anyone over 21. There are language, violence, and sexual situations.

Many thanks to St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books, NetGalley, and Alice Blanchard for allowing me to read and review The Shadow Girls. All opinions stated in this review are mine.

If you enjoyed reading this review of The Shadow Girls, then you will enjoy reading these books:

Other books by Alice Blanchard:

A Stolen Child (Maggie D’Arcy: Book 4) by Sarah Stewart Taylor

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books

Date of publication: June 20th, 2023

Genre: Mystery, Fiction, Thriller, Suspense, Ireland, Mystery Thriller

Series: Maggie D’Arcy

The Mountains Wild—Book 1

A Distant Grave—Book 2

The Drowning Sea—Book 3

A Stolen Child—Book 4

Purchase Links: Kindle | B&N | WorldCat

Goodreads Synopsis:

Sarah Stewart Taylor is known for her atmospheric portrayal of an American detective in Ireland, and her critically acclaimed series returns with A Stolen Child.

After months of training, former Long Island homicide detective Maggie D’arcy is now officially a Garda. She’s finally settling into life in Ireland and so is her teenage daughter, Lilly. Maggie may not be a detective yet, but she’s happy with her community policing assignment in Dublin’s Portobello neighborhood.

When she and her partner find former model and reality tv star Jade Elliot murdered—days after responding to a possible domestic violence disturbance at her apartment—they also discover Jade’s toddler daughter missing. Shorthanded thanks to an investigation into a gangland murder in the neighborhood, Maggie’s friend, Detective Inspector Roly Byrne, brings her onto his team to help find the missing child. But when a key discovery is made, the case only becomes more confusing—and more dangerous. Amidst a nationwide manhunt, Maggie and her colleagues must look deep into Jade’s life—both personal and professional—to find a ruthless killer.

First Line:

“Guard! Guard and American Guard! Guard and American Guard!” My partner, Garda Jason Savage, and I were just finishing up our community patrol when we see two boys beckoning us along the South Circular Road.

A Stolen Child by Sarah Steward Taylor

Maggie D’Arcy is finally a Garda after months of training. It is a step down from her American role as a homicide detective in Long Island, but she is happy. She loves community policing with her partner in the Portobello neighborhood in Dublin. Things change when she and her partner are called to a murder. The victim, a former reality TV star and model, has been found strangled in her house. But, to their horror, they find out that the victim also has a toddler daughter, and she is nowhere to be found. Due to Garda shortages because of a gang murder, Maggie is brought in to help investigate. They are not only tasked with finding the toddler but solving the murder. And the deeper that Maggie digs into the victim’s life (professional and personal), the muddier it gets. Who killed the victim and why? And more importantly, where is the baby?

A Stolen Child is the 4th book in the Maggie D’Arcy series. This book can be read as a standalone book. But I always suggest reading the previous books to catch up on the backstories. I have added books 1-3 to my Goodreads list, and hopefully, I will get to read them at some point.

A Stolen Child is a medium to fast-paced book. I was a little torn on how to describe the book’s pacing. It was fast-paced up to about the middle of the book and then slowed down to a medium pace. I thought that slowing down the storyline would throw the reader off. Surprisingly, it didn’t. There was a slight lag after Laurel was found, but it didn’t affect my interest.

A Stolen Child occurs entirely in Dublin, Ireland, with a few brief forays into a small village on the outskirts of Dublin. I loved it. Ireland ranks very high on my bucket list of places to visit when the kids leave the house.

The main storyline centers around Maggie and the investigation into Jade Eliot’s death and the disappearance of her toddler, Laurel. The author did a fantastic job of showing how the Garda deals with child abductions in Ireland. I also loved seeing how the police investigated a murder in Ireland. When Laurel was found (about halfway through the book), the author turned the storyline into Jade’s murder, which became this twisty-turny storyline that captivated me.

The characters in A Stolen Child were well-written and well-fleshed out. Even the secondary characters had a depth to them that I liked.

I liked Maggie. She was no-nonsense about her job and genuinely enjoyed it. I was thrilled with her when she was asked to be on the murder investigation. It made sense since she was a homicide detective in Long Island. She brought an American approach to Jade’s murder investigation that I felt helped it.

The main storyline, Laurel’s disappearance and Jade’s murder, was well written. I was genuinely afraid that they wouldn’t find Laurel alive. I also did guess who took her. It wasn’t a huge stretch to figure it out. But, on the other hand, Jade’s murder was this twisty turny mess. I spent the entire book trying to figure out who killed her. I was not expecting who it was or her storyline’s turn. Talk about a substantial unexpected twist for both.

I wasn’t too sure what to make of the ending. As I said above, there were a couple of massive twists that I didn’t see coming. I am hoping that there will be a book 5. I am curious if Maggie gets promoted to detective in the Garda.

I recommend A Stolen Child to anyone over 21. There is language, violence, and nongraphic sexual situations.

Many thanks to St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books, NetGalley, and Sarah Stewart Taylor for allowing me to read and review A Stolen Child. All opinions expressed in this review are mine.

If you enjoyed reading this review of A Stolen Child, then you will enjoy reading these books.

Other books by Sarah Stewart Taylor

Dearly Beloved Departed by Nancy Lynn Jarvis

Publisher: Good Read Mysteries

Date of publication: March 3rd, 2023

Genre: Mystery

Series: PIP Inc

The Glass House—Book 1

The Funeral Murder—Book 2

The Corpse’s Secret Life—Book 3

Dearly Beloved Departed—Book 4

Purchase Links: Kindle

Goodreads Synopsis:

Pat is hired by attorney Jason Forman to “get some dirt” on his daughter’s fiancé. Before she gets very far in her investigation, the young man is murdered. Did his past catch up with him or is what Pat fears, that there’s a serial shooter going after Christmas Eve grooms, the reason he was killed? Pat and her fiancé, Detective Sergeant Tim Lindsey, are planning a Christmas Eve wedding which means, if she’s right, he’s on the shooter’s hit list.

First Line

Except for her black pencil skirt and the leopard briefcase she shouldered, Pat was dressed entirely in green clothing that matched the center emerald in her new engagement ring.

Dearly Beloved Departed by Nancy Lynn Jarvis

When Pat is hired by her former work colleague to get some dirt on his daughter’s new fiance, she doesn’t expect him to rush out of his office after she presents him with what he wants or what happens. She was shocked to find out that he and the fiance had been involved in a shooting, which left the fiance dead and the attorney injured. Busy preparing for her Christmas Eve wedding, Pat starts worrying when grooms on a popular wedding planner app start getting shot at. The tie-in; they were all getting married on Christmas Eve. Pat can’t help but wonder if everything is related to the first shooting where her client was injured, and his daughter’s fiance was killed. Who is shooting the Christmas Eve grooms? What is their motive? Will Pat and her fiance make it through their wedding unharmed?

Dearly Beloved Departed is the fourth book in the PIP Inc series. Readers can read this book as a standalone, but I suggest reading books 1-3 before picking this one up. I wish I had done that because I was lost on how some relationships were started and how Pat met her fiance.

The main storyline of Dearly Beloved Departed was very twisty. The book focused on Pat and her investigation into Emigido (Devon) Sanders, Jason Foreman, Julie Foreman, and the other shootings. The author did an excellent job keeping me on edge about everything. I had zero clue who killed Emigido and who was doing the other shootings until almost the end of the book. I was with most of the characters in suspecting someone they had already had in custody. But, as I said above, it was twisty, and I did lose track of the plotline a few times. I was able to get back on track after rereading the last chapter I was on, but still. It stunk, and I wasn’t a fan of it.

I liked the characters in Dearly Beloved Departed. Pat was the one who stood out to me the most. She did an excellent investigation into Emigido while he was alive and used that skill to dig around his case. I liked that she immediately shared what she found with the police. That was a huge point I disagreed with in a couple of other mysteries; the main character didn’t turn over evidence immediately.

The mystery angle of Dearly Beloved Departed was well written (and twisty, see above). The author kept me guessing who killed Emigido and who was shooting the grooms. I thought they were two separate people until she brought them together in the last half of the book. She threw out red herrings left and right, making me suspect people I may not have.

The end of Dearly Beloved Departed was enjoyable. I liked that the author brought together the two storylines, merged them, and then solved the mystery. I was shocked at who it ended up being. In hindsight, looking back, I should have known, and I did kick myself after I was done reading.

I recommend Dearly Beloved Departed to anyone over 16. It is a clean book with no sex or sexual situations. There is mild violence and mild language.

Many thanks to Nancy Lyn Jarvis for allowing me to read and review Dearly Beloved Departed. All opinions stated in this review are mine.

If you enjoyed reading this review of Dearly Beloved Departed, you will enjoy these books:

Other books by Nancy Lyn Jarvis:

Shadowed Spirits (The Guardians: Book 4) by Reily Garrett


Date of publication: August 19th, 2022

Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller

Series: The Guardians

Shadowed Horizons—Book 1 (review here)

Shadowed Origins—Book 2 (review here)

Shadowed Passages—Book 3

Shadowed Spirits—Book 4

Purchase Links: Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

One man’s curse is another man’s weapon.

Genetic engineer Neah Haversham thought unlocking the code to her psychic gift would ease the way to blocking it, something she’d wanted since puberty.
Unable to turn off heightened senses means experiencing life on a different level. Shiya, her golden retriever, is the only companion tolerated.
Within months of finishing her studies, she learns the life she planned has vanished with the rescue of a sarcastic, hardheaded teen with an unprecedented ability.
Ouray Bernard is a healer and warrior, a Native American who uses his skills to train other uniquely talented individuals. When called to help the woman invading his dreams, he can’t refuse.
Loyalties collide as each defends their position in the battle against a secret society determined to dominate them all.

First Line:

Concrete is porous. Most people think it’s the same as cement.

Shadowed Spirits by Reily Garrett

I was immediately sucked into the book when I started reading Shadowed Spirits. I was thrilled that Ouray was getting his HEA, and I couldn’t wait to see who Neah was and what abilities her character would have. I wasn’t disappointed!!

Shadowed Spirits are the 4th book in The Guardians series. Technically, readers could read this book as a standalone mainly because the author does go over what happened in the previous books in the beginning. I would, however, strongly recommend reading the first three books before reading this one.

As noted in the first paragraph, Shadowed Spirits are the love story between Neah and Ouray. This book starts shortly after the last book’s events and introduces Neah. Neah is a genetic engineer coming close to cracking the code of not only her psychic gift but everyone like her psychic gifts. But Neah is on a mission from her mentor when the book starts. That mission is to rescue a gifted teenager from people who wish to harness her ability. But that mission goes sideways, and Neah finds herself joined to Ouray’s group. Determined to keep the teen safe and finish her research, Neah doesn’t have time for romance. But as she gets to know the group, Neah realizes that maybe her research wasn’t for the greater good and was selfish. When her research is stolen, and the teenager kidnapped, Neah must put aside everything she thinks about her gift and use it. Will Neah and the group be able to rescue the teen? Will Neah come to terms with her gift? And more importantly, will Neah and Ouray recognize their feelings for each other?

I liked Neah. From the minute she was introduced in the book, I was fascinated with her. Her gift was unique, and I could sympathize with her frustration with it. It must have been not very good to live with heightened senses. I understood why she went into genetic research. She wanted a way to turn it off. It made sense to me. She mildly annoys me when she refuses to listen to reason with her research (it could put people like her at risk). But other than that, I enjoyed her character.

I was super happy that Ouray got his love story. A little of his background was released, and I wish the author had released more of his background. He was a stabilizing force with Caspar and Neah once they overcame their initial distrust of him. Plus, he trained them (which they both needed). I enjoyed his character a lot.

I wasn’t expecting Caspar and her abilities. Just for the record, Caspar is not her real name. She got the nickname because of her ability. Caspar can phase through inanimate and animate objects. She reminded me of my almost 17-year-old daughter: headstrong, spunky, and with a heart of gold. She cared more than she let on. I also was in awe of her ability. The more the author released, the stronger it got. She phased through a mountain to escape the bad guys while holding Neah in one memorable scene. In another memorable scene, she could phase her hand through a chest and grab a heart in her hand as an intimidation tactic. I cannot wait to see where her story ends up.

The romance angle of Shadowed Spirits was very slight and almost overlooked. I didn’t feel Neah and Ouray liked each other that way until nearly the end of the book. And that was only after Christine’s vision that Neah saw herself with a black-haired toddler boy.

There were zero sex scenes in Shadowed Spirits. Ouray and Neah kiss, but it is towards the end of the book. Honestly, I liked it like that. I felt that sex would have taken away some of the storylines with everything going on.

The author very well wrote the plotline regarding Neah, her research, the two groups helping her, and the group kidnapping people with abilities. Some of those scenes were gripping, and I couldn’t put my book down. I also loved what happened with Pandora towards the end of the book. Let’s say that she deserved what she got.

The plotline centered around Neah; her background and her abilities were interesting. I did figure out who Neah was related to by the middle of the book. But, I was still surprised when the author made the grand reveal at the end. It did make sense.

The plotline centered around Caspar, her background and her abilities were well written. I enjoyed watching her character flesh out during the book. As I mentioned above, I was in awe of her abilities. She was one of the more powerful, gifted people I have read in the series. Her background is revealed at the end of the book. She found out where she came from and how she ended up in the foster system. The only thing that the author didn’t release was her true name.

The end of Shadowed Spirits was terrific. The author wrapped up Neah and Ouray’s storyline and part of Caspar’s. But she left all the rest open and threw in a shocking bit of information that made my mouth drop. I have a feeling I know who the next couple will be, but I’m not going to say.

I would recommend Shadowed Spirits to anyone over 21. There is no sex. There is language and violence. There are also scenes of people being held against their will and drugged and kidnapped.

Starting Over at Blueberry Creek (Sweetwater Springs: Book 4) by Annie Rains

Starting Over at Blueberry Creek: Includes a bonus novella (Sweetwater Springs Book 4) by [Rains, Annie]

4 Stars

Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing), Forever

Date of publication: February 25th, 2020

Genre: Romance

Series: Sweetwater Springs

Christmas on Mistletoe Lane—Book 1 (Review Here)

A Wedding on Lavender Hill—Book 1.5

Springtime at Hope Cottage—Book 2 (Review Here)

Kiss Me in Sweetwater Springs—Book 2.5

Snowfall on Cedar Trail—Book 3 (Review Here)

Starting Over at Blueberry Creek—Book 4

Where you can find Starting Over at Blueberry Creek: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

USA Today bestselling author Annie Rains welcomes you back to Sweetwater Springs, North Carolina, with a charming friends-to-lovers story between a sexy fireman and the beautiful woman who mends his heart.
Should they fan the flames or douse this fire before someone gets seriously burned?

Firefighter Luke Marini moved to the small town of Sweetwater Springs with the highest of hopes – new town, new job, and new neighbors who know nothing of his past. And that’s just how he wants to keep it. But it’s nearly impossible when the gorgeous brunette next door decides to be the neighborhood welcome wagon. She’s sugar, spice, and everything nice – but getting close to someone again is playing with fire.

Brenna McConnell put college on hold to raise her little sister. Now that Eve is grown, Brenna is ready to leave Blueberry Creek and finish what she started. Moving on isn’t easy, however, when her gruff new neighbor gives Eve a dangerous firefighting job. And yet, even as Brenna is telling him off for putting her sister in harm’s way, she can’t deny the sizzling chemistry between them. She put her dreams on hold once. Is she willing to make that sacrifice again for a chance at forever?

First Line:

The aroma of sugar, spice, and butter filled Brenna McConnell’s kitchen.

Starting Over at Blueberry Creek by Annie Rains

My Review:

I was curious about who the romance would be centered around in Starting Over at Blueberry Creek. So, I was excited when I saw that it was going to be Brenna’s romance. I had been curious about her backstory, and of course, I wanted to see who her true love would be.

Now, I did like Starting Over at Blueberry Creek. I loved Brenna and Luke’s romance. I loved how they interacted. Heck, I even loved the dog. But, it was Eve and Ryan that almost killed the book for me. Let me explain why.

Eve was a brat. I get that she was a teenager, but she acted like she was a child for most of the book. Eve had zero sympathy for Brenna. She also acted like a child on the job. She wants to be a firefighter, yet on her first call, she runs into a burning building to save kittens. And after Luke told her not to? Oh, and let’s not forget that she was caught drinking underage by her boss. If you couldn’t tell, I didn’t like her.

Ryan is the other one who scenes almost killed the book. He had appeared in previous books, and I know his backstory. I felt terrible for him, and I was thrilled that he got a job. Ryan was one of the most immature, insubordinate secondary characters I have ever read (well, next to Eve). The things he did in this book would have gotten him fired in real life. I knew quite a few firefighters, and I can confidently say that the stuff Ryan pulled would have gotten him fired.

I did like Brenna, and I thought that her character did a lot of growth throughout the book. She was a good person, and it showed. Not a lot of college-aged girls would willingly drop out of college to raise their pre-teen sisters. She dealt with Eve’s crap well, even though she wondered where she went wrong. By the end of the book, she was a better person for her experiences.

I liked Luke. His backstory was so tragic. I knew something was up when he glossed over the fire. But I wasn’t expecting what he revealed. I loved how close he was to his family too. I thought he was a great acting fire chief. I did think he was a little too lenient with Ryan and Eve. While I didn’t like his insecurities, I did like that the author chose to have him realistically handle them.

Luke and Brenna’s relationship was perfect. I liked that they were open and honest with each other from the beginning. I also liked that they both wanted to bring it to the next step. What I liked the most is that they talked through their issues like adults instead of acting like children. The only time they did that was when Eve was hurt, and even then, Brenna’s emotions were all over the place.

The sex scenes in Starting Over at Blueberry Creek were discreetly written. I liked that. Instead of getting graphic, the author let me imagine what was going on in bed. That didn’t take away from the story at all. Instead, it allowed me to focus on Brenna and Luke’s relationship.

I did figure that Brenna was going to go down the path she did with her job. I called it from the beginning. Not that it was a bad thing, I liked seeing her seesaw back and forth before doing what was right for her. Of course, what happened towards the end of that storyline was a given.

Starting Over at Blueberry Creek is the 4th book in the Sweetwater Springs series. You can read this as a stand-alone. But, I would read the previous three books. That way, you can understand the different friendships and everything else.

The end of Starting Over at Blueberry Creek was your typical HEA. I loved it. What I liked, even more, was that epilogue. Talk about making me cry!!! I also like that I think I know who the next book will feature.

I would give Starting Over at Blueberry Creek an Adult rating. There is non-graphic sex. There is mild language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Starting Over at Blueberry Creek. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

The Angel of Evil (The Great Devil War: Book 4) by Kenneth B. Andersen

The Angel of Evil: The Great Devil War IV by [Andersen, Kenneth B., Andersen, Kenneth Bøgh]

4 Stars


Date of publication: October 20th, 2019

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Series: The Great Devil War

The Devil’s Apprentice—Book 1 (Review here)

The Die of Death—Book 2 (Review here)

The Wrongful Death—Book 3 (Review here)

The Angel of Evil—Book 4

The Fallen Angel—Book 5 (expected publication date: May 2020)

The Fallen Devil—Book 6 (expected publication date: 2020)

Where you can find The Angel of Evil: Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

SPOILER-ALERT! Stop reading if you haven’t read book I-III yet!

Nothing will ever be the same. Satina is gone, kidnapped by the enemy. Disobeying Lucifer, Philip heads out to find her, journeying into the deep darkness of Outer Reach. But nothing can prepare Philip for the horror that awaits—or the demons he will face.

Meanwhile, Lucifer’s kingdom is threatened as the Great Devil War draws closer. All Hell is about to break loose.

The Angel of Evil is volume 4 of The Great Devil War series.

First Line:

There was a knock at his door and he heard his mother’s voice in the hallway.

The Angel of Evil by Kenneth B. Andersen

My Review:

I was super excited when I started reading The Angel of Evil. I needed to know what was going to happen to Philip, Lucifer, Satina, Aziel (yes, him!!), and the other residents of Hell that have been introduced throughout this series. I was not disappointed. The Angel of Evil more than delivered in this book.

It is hard to write a review for a book that has such a complex storyline. I am going to try. There is so much that I want to say but can’t because I fear revealing something I shouldn’t. I am going to be annoyingly vague in this review (sorry, not sorry). Hopefully, my vagueness will make someone want to read the series.

The plotline of The Angel of Evil was fast-paced. Right from the beginning, it took off, and it didn’t slow down until the end. I loved it. I also liked that, for once, I couldn’t tell what was going to happen to Philip.

I am going to warn people (as I did in previous reviews and this blurb does) that The Angel of Evil is NOT a stand-alone book. You NEED to read the first three books first before reading this one. That isn’t a suggestion. There is so much going on that you will get lost reading this first. Trust me on this.

I loved Philip in this book. He was on a mission to save his friends, and nothing would stop him. Not even Lucifer saying, “No.” He showed leadership skills at points during the book. And let’s not forget about his bravery. Or the actual depth of his feelings for Satina.

Again, the author did a fantastic job of taking Biblical stories and myths from various cultures and meshing them together. I loved seeing Norse mythology being featured right along with Biblical stories.

The storyline about The Great Devil War and Aziel were wonderfully written. There was a point where I was wondering what that little devil was up to. His plans were meticulously laid out, but Philip was the one who threw a wrench in them.

I felt awful for Satina in The Angel of Evil. Her time with Aziel changed her. She was not the sweet tempter anymore. She had been through a traumatic experience. I am expecting her to be back to her old self for the next book. I missed her in this one.one.

The end of The Angel of Evil was terrific. I cannot wait to see what book five is going to bring. If the teaser chapter is any inclination, then I can’t wait to read the book!!

I would give The Angel of Evil an Older Teen rating. There is no sex. There is mild language. There is violence. I would reccomend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.

I would reread The Angel of Evil I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Weekend Fling (Crazy Love: Book 4) by Stacey Lynn

Weekend Fling: A Crazy Love Novel by [Lynn, Stacey]

4 Stars

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept, Loveswept

Date of publication: November 26th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Crazy Love

Fake Wife—Book 1 (Review Here)

Knocked Up—Book 2 (Review Here)

28 Dates—Book 3 (Review Here)

Weekend Fling—Book 4

Where you can find Weekend Fling: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

Fresh out of a long-term relationship, Willow Parks is working two jobs and caring for her mother, whose husband left her with nothing but a pile of bills. That’s why Willow made a vow: no men until she figures out her own life.

But while she may not need a man, she could use a break. And a weekend away at a California beach to clear her head? That’s appealing. Even if the offer comes from Trey Collins, the irresistible tech-mogul millionaire who visits her coffee shop every morning like clockwork—and needs a date for his best friend’s wedding. With an adorable, occasional stutter, he refuses to take no for an answer.

Once the weekend begins, Trey is intent on proving how good they can be together. Willow’s even feeling tempted to break her vow—until reality rudely interrupts her well-deserved getaway. There’s no way she and Trey have a future, not with the colossal amount of baggage Willow has to offer.

But Trey is used to getting what he wants. He just has his work cut out for him convincing her that they want the same thing.

First Line:

Wiping sleep from my eyes, I trudge down the hall of my childhood home.

Weekend Fling by Stacey Lynn

My Review:

I have had a love-hate relationship with Stacey Lynn’s Crazy Love series. I loved the first book in the series. But, with the next two books, I was “meh.” Those two books didn’t impress me too much. So, when I saw that Weekend Fling was up for review on NetGalley, I decided to give it ago. I figured with two “meh” books in a row that I would like the next book. And I thought right. I enjoyed reading Weekend Fling. It was just the book I needed to read, and it reignited my interest in the series.

The plotline for Weekend Fling had an excellent flow to it. Having a good flow to the plotline makes the book so much easier to read. The pacing of the book was medium, which I enjoyed. I go back and forth on how fast I like my romances to be. Sometimes I like them slow. Other times I want them fast. And still other times, I like the medium-paced. There were no dropped storylines or characters who mysteriously disappear.

I wasn’t a fan of Willow when Weekend Fling started. She rubbed me the wrong way with the way she treated Trey. But, as I got involved in the book, I began to see why Willow treated him the way she did. She was burning the candle at both ends. Willow was resentful that her father could leave and go on with his life. She also was becoming resentful that her mother couldn’t pull herself out of her depression. I was surprised when she agreed to go away with Trey for the weekend. By that point, I started to like her. She had an inner strength that most people don’t have, how she acted in the events after the wedding showcased that perfectly.

I loved Trey. He was everything that Willow needed and then some. I loved that he wasn’t pushy. Trey let Willow set the pace of their relationship. I also loved how he was there for her, and he didn’t let her push him away during the last half of the book. There was a point in the book where I thought Trey needed to be a little more pushy with her. Almost as soon as I felt that, he took charge. Loved it!!

There are some triggers in Weekend Fling. The author touches upon mental illness and suicide during the book. The author’s note at the end of the book broke my heart. I started bawling my eyes out when reading it.

Weekend Fling can be read as a stand-alone book. It is the 4th book in the Crazy Love series. What I enjoyed is that the author was able to bring the previous characters from the previous three books into this book but keep them in the background.

Trey and Willow had insane sexual chemistry. The author chose to let it build and build throughout the book. When they finally did have sex, it was a flipping explosion. I loved it!! The sex scenes after that weren’t as hot, but they were still good.

The end of Weekend Fling was bittersweet. I thought that Willow’s father’s explanation was weak AF, but it still worked. I loved the epilogue!!!

I would give Weekend Fling an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Weekend Fling. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

A Cowboy Like You (Heart of Texas: Book 4) by Donna Grant

A Cowboy Like You (Heart of Texas Book 4) by [Grant, Donna]

3.5 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Date of publication: November 26th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Heart of Texas

The Christmas Cowboy Hero—Book 1

Cowboy, Cross My Heart—Book 2 (review here)

My Favorite Cowboy—Book 3 (review here)

A Cowboy Like You—Book 4

Where you can find A Cowboy Like You: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

In the Heart of Texas, a heartthrob cowboy may get his second chance at love…

Danny Oldman, the handsome Lone Star sheriff, is still single. He tells himself, and anyone who asks, that he is married to his job―and what matters most is keeping the people of his beloved Texas hometown safe. The truth? Danny still hasn’t gotten over his high school crush. She moved away after graduation and took Danny’s heart with her.

Skylar Long never thought she would have to flee Houston and return home―where it all began for her. But that’s what happened after the man of her dreams turned out to be an actual nightmare. Now, Skylar is desperate to escape her obsessive boyfriend. Nothing shocks her more than seeing Danny again and realizing that their long-ago attraction is more powerful than ever. But can she and Danny find a way to fight against Skylar’s wealthy, powerful ex who is dead set on tearing them apart?

First Line:

Another long, exhausting day.

A Cowboy Like You by Donna Grant

My Review:

I know that I have mentioned this before, but cowboy romances are one of my guilty pleasures. There is just something about a cowboy that gets me. It might be the jeans or the fact that they are (usually) not talkative. Whatever it is, I love reading them. So when I saw A Cowboy Like You was up for review on NetGalley, I knew that I had to read it. While I am glad that I read it, I was left wanting with this book.

The plotline for A Cowboy Like You was fast-paced. While I like fast-paced plotlines, there are times where I think that they can go too fast. And this is one of them. I felt that some of the major plotlines were rushed along. I also had an issue with dropped plotlines. The slashed tires sub plotline was one. What happened to her afterward? Maybe I missed it (quite possible). She went to jail and bam, nothing about her ever again. Or the hacking subplot. It was never finished and left me wondering what happened with that.

I did like Skylar, and I sympathized with her. The author painted a realistic picture of a woman who was trying to leave her abusive boyfriend. My heart broke for her during those first few chapters. All she wanted was to leave; she didn’t ask for anything that Matt put her through. Her inner strength did show when Matt’s family started their smear campaign in the media. All over a restraining order. I did understand why she wanted to leave the ranch, but at the same time, I was mentally urging her to stay on it.

I loved Danny, even if he was a little disillusioned with his job. I get it. There is only so much that he could do when it came to domestic violence situations. I also understood why he got involved with Skylar’s case. As the book went on, I was impressed with how far he would go to protect Skylar.

I wanted to drop kick Matt. Every single scene he was in, he left a bad taste in my mouth. He needed someone to beat him down the way that he hit Skylar and the woman before her. His family was no different. They gave me chills also.

The romance between Danny and Skylar didn’t feel right to me at first. It was too fast, and so soon after her last relationship. Because of that, I didn’t feel any romantic connection between them. But, the sex scenes were hot!!

A Cowboy Like You is the 4th book in the Heart of Texas series. It can be read as a stand-alone book. But, I suggest reading the previous books before this one. That way, you can better understand the backgrounds of the other characters.

The end of the book was intense. But it was rushed. While I was glad about everything that happened, I couldn’t quite believe it, even with the epilogue. As I said, everything was rushed. I am interested to see how the next book is going to be about.

I would give A Cowboy Like You an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread A Cowboy Like You. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Stolen Bloodlines (Steam and Shadow: Book 4) by L.G. Rollins

Stolen Bloodline (Steam and Shadow Book 4) by [Rollins, L. G.]

4 Stars

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services

Date of publication: August 20th, 2019

Genre: Romance, Steampunk, Paranormal

Series: Steam and Shadow

Masked by Moonlight—Book 0.5

Buried in Blue—Book 1

Waltz of Crows—Book 2 (review here)

Clockwork Image—Book 3 (review here)

Stolen Bloodlines—Book 4

Where you can find Stolen Bloodlines: Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

The heritage she never knew was hers. The future he never believed could be. 

Jasper Wimple’s art is gaining popularity and life is falling into place for him at last. After meeting the Ambassador from China, a relationship that could propel him forward, Jasper’s street smarts tell him to steer clear of the man. But nothing could have prepared Jasper for a ghostly visit from one of the ambassador’s murdered victims, or taught him what to do when the ghost demands Jasper help protect his surviving wife and daughter.

Ju is done mourning a father she never knew for the entirety of Ghost Month, despite her mother’s insistence that they continue the tradition. Instead, Ju focuses on her upcoming audition—her one chance to enter London’s most prestigious dance school.

But then her mother’s life is threatened, and Ju sets everything else aside. Working together as new friends and unexpected allies, Jasper and Ju struggle to protect Ju’s mother and each other. With their own lives, the lives of those they care most about, and a budding romance all on the line, will they bring one of the most powerful men in England to justice before he silences them for good?

First Line:

Zhi Liling slipped in through the door and tip-toed up behind her husband, Ju-Long.

Stolen Bloodlines by L.G. Rollins

My Review:

The blurb for Stolen Bloodline caught my attention. Not only because it was Jasper’s story but because of Ju. Those two paragraphs made me want to read Stolen Bloodline. I wanted to see who the lucky lady was that caught (and held) Jasper’s attention. I also wanted to see if his story was as good as Tressa. I was pleased with both.

Stolen Bloodline has an exciting couple of plot lines. Jasper is an artist who is starting to become famous. The Chinese Ambassador, Leng, approaches Jasper at one of his showings. Leng wants Jasper to steal something for him. In turn, Leng will guarantee that Jasper’s career as an artist will explode. Jasper declines, and he is visited by Leng’s associated later on that night. Jasper must choose, does he do what Leng wants and become famous, or will he risk losing everything he loves.

I loved Ju. From the minute she was introduced in the book, I knew that she was going to be unique. I did raise an eyebrow when she had the talk with her mother about not doing Ghost Month. I did think it was a little disrespectful for her not to honor the ancestors like her mother. But, then I got to thinking. If I was the daughter of an immigrant, would I have acted the same way? Yes. I also liked how Ju concluded that honoring her ancestors wasn’t bad. It was refreshing to read.

I also liked how Ju tackled her race in Stolen Bloodline. She was aware that she was different. Ju knew that there wasn’t a lot of girls/women who looked like her auditioning at the school. She still went and did it. Again, it was refreshing to read.

I loved Jasper in Stolen Bloodlines. He took being approached by Ju-Long in ghost form very well. But then again, he had dealt with a vampire in the last book, so nothing phased him. I liked that he knew how he felt about Ju. I also liked that he was awkward when trying to explain how he felt about her. There was another thing that made me love him. Unfortunately, it is part of the end of the book, so I can’t say what it is.

The paranormal angle of the book was terrific. The author had the werewolves back in this book, which I loved. But, she also had ghosts. I hope that she expands on how they interact with people. Because it was interesting!!

The romance angle of the book was subtle. It did take some time to get moving. It did get frustrating at times, but at the same time, I loved watching the dance they did.

I want to add that while Stolen Bloodlines is the 4th book in the Steam and Shadow series, it can be read as a stand-alone.

The end of Stolen Bloodlines was action-packed. I was happy that things got resolved the way they did. Leng deserved everything that happened to him. I thought what Jaspar did to call attention to Leng was ingenious. I loved that Ju and Jasper got their HEA. I am wondering if there will be a book 5 and who will it be?

I would give Stolen Bloodline an Older Teen rating. There is no sex. There is no language. There is mild violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Stolen Bloodline. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**