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28 July 2017

The Girl in the Ice by Robert Bryndza (Book Beginnings & Friday 56)

I'm still working on The Girl in the Ice and still loving it! It's entirely possible that I'll be finished with this by the time I get home from work. Once I was able to focus a bit it really started flying for me. I had forgotten how much I love a good police procedural. I've been stuck in the cozy/romcom mode for far too long! 

Erika Foster is a wonderfully complex and gloriously flawed main character. She's sometimes vulgar, often impulsive, and emotionally scarred. I kind of feel like I should be buying her shots in a bar just so we can have a good gab and get it all out. 

As always, Friday 56 is hosted at Freda's Voice & Book Beginnings is at Rose City Reader. This week my "56" comes from the 56% mark of the ebook I was gifted, and the Book Beginnings is actually from the second paragraph since I used the first on Tuesday.

25 July 2017

The Girl in the Ice by Robert Bryndza (Tuesday Intro & Teaser Tuesday)

Earlier today I shared the cover reveal for Robert Bryndza's upcoming Cold Blood -- the fifth book in the Erika Foster series. Now I'm sharing the beginning few lines and a teaser from the first, which I started reading this afternoon. 
This is definitely exactly what I needed and I may very well fly from one book in the series straight into the next until I'm caught up for Cold Blood

(By the way -- in the US The Girl in the Ice is only 99 cents right now for Kindle on Amazon!)

As per usual, "First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros" from Bibliophile by the Sea is on vacation ... but I'm used to doing these two together so I'm just going to stick with it. "Teaser Tuesday" at The Purple Booker asks for a random line or two from anywhere in the book currently being read. I know I have more than a line or two. Be impressed I didn't just screenshot the whole page to post.

COVER REVEAL! Robert Bryndza's Cold Blood

I've been hearing about Robert Bryndza for ages now (basically for as long as I've been a bookouture junkie), and even have several of his romantic comedies sitting in my Kindle app waiting for me to get to them .... but they'll have to wait. 

Everything will have to wait and all because of one book cover. 

Is that not just amazingly gorgeous in a goosepimpley "what the heck" kind of way?!?

I normally don't read thrillers. I'm a lighthearted, fluffy, cozy kind of reader for the most part. The occasional gothic and paranormal, sure, but even those tend to be more on the butterflies and rainbows end of the spectrum to some degree.

Well, kids, life ain't all butterflies and rainbows.

Thanks to life ... stuff ... I've been more in the mood for nitty and gritty. For blood. For smashing butterflies.

Then I saw this cover.

This cover for Robert Bryndza's Cold Blood is so far away from butterflies and rainbows that I have a feeling it would eat them for lunch. And that is exactly what I'm in the mood for. I read the description and knew this had to be mine. This is exactly what my brain has been crying out for.
The suitcase was badly rusted, and took Erika several attempts, but it yielded and sagged open as she unzipped it. Nothing could prepare her for what she would find inside…

When a battered suitcase containing the dismembered body of a young man washes up on the shore of the river Thames, Detective Erika Foster is shocked. She’s worked on some terrifying cases but never seen anything like this before. 

As Erika and her team set to work, she makes the link with another victim – the body of a young woman dumped in an identical suitcase two weeks ago. 

Erika quickly realises she’s on the trail of a serial killer who’s already made their next move. Yet just as Erika starts to make headway with the investigation, she is the victim of a brutal attack. 

But nothing will stop Erika. As the body count rises, the twin daughters of her colleague Commander Marsh are abducted, and the stakes are higher than ever before. Can Erika save the lives of two innocent children before it’s too late? She’s running out of time and about to make a disturbing discovery…there’s more than one killer

Brilliantly gripping, Cold Blood will have you hooked from the first page and holding your breath to the heart-stopping and shocking ending. 
Of course, then I realized that I'm so far behind that I have four Detective Erika Foster novels to read before I can get to this one. Luckily, I now have them all and this comes out on the 20th of September (you can pre-order it now, though ... UK readers can pre-order here). I've got this.

11 July 2017

American Gods by Neil Gaiman (Tuesday Intro & Teaser Tuesday)

I'm taking a little break from the NetGalley shelf and the cozies and the rom-coms to finally crack open Neil Gaiman's American Gods. I've had the paperback sitting on my shelf for 5 or 6 years now and I can't bring myself to watch the show until I've read the book ... so ... 
The reviews -- like most of Gaiman's -- are either love it or hate it. So far I'm in the "love it" camp, but I'm also not past the 25% mark yet, even though the Teaser Tuesday quote is from 55%. (I picked a random percentage to jump to and found the perfect-for-me blip.)
As per usual, "First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros" from Bibliophile by the Sea is on vacation ... but I'm used to doing these two together so I'm just going to stick with it. "Teaser Tuesday" at The Purple Booker asks for a random line or two from anywhere in the book currently being read. I know I have more than a line or two. Be impressed I didn't just screenshot the whole page to post.

10 July 2017

A little ramble about.. A French Affair by Katie Fforde

Author: Katie Fforde
Title: A French Affair
Publication: Bookouture -- 7 July 2017 (re-release)
First Line: ‘I’m saying this more in horror than in anger, sweets, but are you really going like that?’
Faves on 4s:
14% - 'You know, I find it quite hard to see Matthew and Aunt Rainey working together. She was so eccentric and off the walk and he's so -- stuffy!'
34% - His smiles were so rare it reminded Gina of the sun coming out from behind the clouds after a stormy day: it wasn't exactly blazing sunshine but it lifted the spirits.
64% - Gina felt she was in heaven or was the star of the best sort of romantic film.
84% - 'It was so awful when we weren't speaking. It was like I was missing an arm.'
A French Affair is the fourth Katie Fforde book I've read so far. It's a sweet story about two sisters who inherit their aunt's stall in an antique center -- cynical public relations specialist Gina and the more whimsical mum of twins Sally. Of course, part of the deal of the inheritance was that they work with the owner, Matthew -- single, serious and brooding. There's romance and heartbreak and a lot of antiques ... but I didn't feel as much magic as I had with my previous Fforde reads. Maybe if I had more of an interest in antiques it would have been different. It was still a good read, but not one that I'm going to be rushing out to buy in paperback to add to my actual shelves.

07 July 2017

Death Plays a Part by Vivian Conroy (Tour, Book Beginnings & Friday 56)

Just under a month ago I was thrilled to be part of the double cover reveal for Vivian Conroy's new Cornish Castle Mystery series and I still can't get over how cute the covers are -- especially now that I know how perfectly the first one, at least, matches what's inside!

Today the first in the series, Death Plays a Part, is finally being released and I'm so flipping excited for you all to finally be able to read it, too! I knew as soon as I saw the description that it would likely be one that my theater-loving Cornwall-obsessed self would love, and I wasn't wrong.

The first of Vivian Conroy's Cornish Castle Mysteries is yet another fantastic tale with characters I just can't get enough of!

Guinevere is absolutely my kind of girl. She loves books and history and the theater and her sidekick dachshund, Dolly. When faced with a locked-room murder happening right under her feet, she uses her knowledge of theatrics and mystery stories to come up with possible scenarios -- even acting them out with make-shift displays like one would use in order to plot out placements for a theater production. She's smart, she's spunky, she's caring ... and I could totally see us being friends.

That's one of the great things about Vivian Conroy -- whether she's writing about 1920s London socialites, or present day "normal" gals in Maine or Cornwall, she has a knack of being able to create heroines I would love to call my friends. She also adds the right combination of supporting characters to keep things interesting and the men? Well, let's just say that I would definitely trade shoes with Guinevere for a few pages if it meant quality time to be had with Oliver .... just like I still swoon with a mere thought of Jake from the Lady Alkmene books. I can't wait to revisit the castle, its inhabitants and their neighbors in Rubies in the Roses!

Basically, Vivian Conroy rocks my socks and this is definitely another book that I would highly recommend reading. You can order it now, and since it's Friday, I also get to give you a little glimpse or two as part of my usual Book Beginnings & Friday 56:
As always, Friday 56 is hosted at Freda's Voice & Book Beginnings is at Rose City Reader.

Please visit the other stops on the tour! 
Clicking on the image below will take you to Conroy's 
Twitter and she always shares links to tour stops!

04 July 2017

Big Sexy Love by Kirsty Greenwood (Tuesday Intro & Teaser Tuesday)

Oh, Kirsty Greenwood. Last year she nailed me with an obsession with Grease 2 that lasted for months, and now I'll have no choice but to watch Atonement over and over and over again. And, once again, she's also given me a main character who simultaneously breaks my heart and makes it swell with hope and joy and ... just all the feels. Big Sexy Love's Olive is so me in so many ways that it's almost terrifying. Actually, I wish Olive was so me in so many ways because the way things turn out for her? I could definitely deal with that. Our "so me"-ness seems to veer in different directions right around the 50% mark, but I've got time yet for my own other 50.
Out of five stars I would have to give this a solid 11 and even that isn't enough.

From Amazon:
Olive Brewster is a scaredy cat. She doesn't do new or risky. She’s happy enough with her job at the local market, it’s cool that she has no boyfriend to fret over, she even likes that she still lives in her childhood home. No drama, no fuss, no problems. Everything is fine. Super duper fine.

Except … Olive's best friend in the world​, Birdie, is dying.

Birdie has one final wish. She wants to track down her first love, Chuck, and because she's stuck in the hospital she needs Olive's help to do it. But there’s a teeny problem: Chuck is somewhere in New York and Olive has never even left her home town, let alone roamed the crazy streets of Manhattan.

As if the big city isn't scary enough, Olive has to contend with Seth, a cocky comedy TV writer who thinks she’s a joke; Anders, a bored socialite who’s taken a shine to her; and the fact that no matter how hard she tries to track down Chuck, he doesn't seem to want to be found.

Can Olive learn to overcome her fears, abandon her old safe routine and fulfil her best friend’s last wish?  It's going to take extra bravery, one badass attitude and a whole lot of Big Sexy Love to make this happen …

I know ... "First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros" from Bibliophile by the Sea is on vacation ... but I'm used to doing these two together so I'm just going to stick with it. "Teaser Tuesday" at The Purple Booker asks for a random line or two from anywhere in the book currently being read.