Book Tour, Guest Post & Giveaway: Baby’s Got Blue Eyes (Introducing DI Ted Darling) by L.M. Krier





Baby's Got Blue Eyes
Baby's Got Blue Eyes

Baby’s Got Blue Eyes by L.M Krier
Release Date: February 2015
Pages: 277
Genres: Crime / Thriller

Purchase Link:Amazon

 

Book Blurb:

Someone is dumping bodies on DI Ted Darling’s patch and he’s not happy. Ted’s a good solid copper, in an old-fashioned way, with an excellent clear-up rate. He’s not at all like your average cop and has his own unique way of dealing with any prejudice his differences bring him. No heavy drinking, no failed marriage, just a steady, long-term relationship. He and his partner have cats, not kids.

But this serial killer seems to be running effortless rings round Ted and his team. Every promising lead just takes them up another frustrating blind alley.

Then it starts to get personal …

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Review: Until the Sun Rises by Channing Whitaker | #BookReview

Until the Sun Rises by Channing Whitaker
Until the Sun Rises

Print Length: 290 pages

Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1610091639

Publisher: Dark Oak Mysteries ( Oak Tree Press ) (April 21, 2015)

Publication Date: April 21, 2015

Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

ASIN: B00WIK8OAI

Purchase Link: Amazon

 

FictionZeal’s Review:

The Drake family mansion in Shadows Bend, Iowa is haunted … or so it is reported.  Seventy-five years ago, the family completely disappeared.  The two police officers investigating their disappearance at the time “suffered unusual, yet separate, accidents and perished in the mansion within hours of one another.”  After other bizarre deaths, it was decided to call off the search and seal the manor for 100 years.  But, now after 75 years, it has caught the attention of a reality TV show; they will provide a live feed of its reopening.  They’ve located five brave people who have agreed to spend one night in the house: Madam Galva La Claire, career psychic; Baxter ‘Ax’ Cruz, professional paranormal investigator; Audrey Donahue, model and star of several popular cult horror films; Harlan Holt, Anthropology Ph.D. student; and Genevieve Freeman, a local woman and a Pre-Med graduate.  One Million dollars will be the prize split between the participants who remain within the house for the entire night.

As some background, Vinton Drake had attended a magic show of one Malvern Kamrar, “Master of Shadows.”  Drake had become entirely consumed with Malvern’s bizarre magic.  He’d begun a journal recounting details of Malvern, as well as what he subsequently discovered about the man.  Malvern’s shows were often called “Death Shows.”

I loved the format with which the author unveiled the details of the people past tense as well as present day – the TV host and the people who agreed to stay in the house.  I almost felt like I could snoop through this old creaky mansion with the guests.  I think I was at least as surprised as they were by their discoveries.  The primary protagonists were Harlan and Genevieve (Vieve).  The past was told by Vinton’s journals and the word of mouth stories supplied by Vieve.  Not overly scary; just a good old-fashioned haunted house story.  Rating: 4 out of 5.

4 spectacles

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Book Tour & First Chapter Reveal: The Tiger’s Cage by Linda J. White

The Tiger's Cage banner

Title: The Tiger’s Cage
Author: Linda J. White
Publisher: Windy Bay Books
Pages: 324
Genre: Suspense

Purchase Link:

 

Book Blurb:

FBI Special Agent Tom Donovan is about to nail the drug lord he’s been investigating when Angel Ramos does the unthinkable: He kidnaps Tom’s eighteen-year-old son, Kenny. The FBI responds with a powerful show of force but Ramos manages to elude them. Tom is furious, his wife is terrified, and their son is forced to confront evil face-to-face.

Tom devises a brilliant plan to rescue his son, but on a windy, rainy night in Washington, his past collides with his present in a dramatic turn of events, and Tom discovers his greatest strength isn’t his at all.

The Tiger’s Cage is a story of courage, faith, and endurance in a violent world.

  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

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Review: Docket No. 76 by Arita M.L. Bohannan | #BookReview

Print Length: 189 pages

Publisher: AuthorHouse (January 17, 2014)

Publication Date: January 17, 2014

Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

ASIN: B00I968X4C

Purchase Link: Amazon

 

FictionZeal’s Review:

Lee Lawson is their first suspect.  Why?  He had been watching little five-year-old Dori Dauzat at his home while his close friends, her parents, were away.  Sometime late in the night, he awoke and checked on her; she wasn’t there.  He found her at the bottom of the stairs outside the house.  She was bloodied, but alive.  He called 911, but then seemed to resist handing her over.  She was also clinging to him.  Detective Curtis is taking the lead on this case.  After speaking with Lawson and the girl’s parents, he begins to rule him out as a suspect.  After some analysis, they found DNA of one Bruce Gurganus on the duct tape used to tie Dori’s wrists together.

New Orleans Assistant DA Sandra Morgan has been assigned to try Docket No. 76 – State of Louisiana vs. Bruce Garganus.  It takes her a while to recognize him, but then she remembers it well.  How can she forget?  This is the same man – she’s sure of it – who had hurt her when she was only eight-years-old.  If she can help it, he’ll never sexually assault another child.

This was an incredibly short read (175 pp), but that’s not to say anything is lacking.  In fact, it’s well-packed with sufficient detail and substance.  I did feel Sandra lost a bit of focus during the trial, but perhaps that was intentional on the author’s part since Sandra had also been abused by this same man.  I just wished she’d been able to put her own feelings on hold so she could do her utmost best for little Dori.  This appears to be the author’s debut novel, and as someone who loves Legal Thrillers, I couldn’t have asked for a better psychologically twisted ending.  Rating: 4 out of 5.

4 spectacles

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Excerpt; Coming Soon: VALENTINA – A gripping psychological thriller debut by S. E. Lynes

Print Length: 294 pages

Publisher: Blackbird Digital Books (July 1, 2016)

Publication Date: July 1, 2016

Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

ASIN: B01EVRUUMU

Purchase Link – Special pre-order price of 99c Amazon

 

Book Blurb:

When Glasgow journalist Shona McGilvery moves with her partner Mikey and their baby to an idyllic cottage in rural Scotland, they believe that all that lies ahead of them is happiness.

But with Mikey working offshore, the frightening isolation of the Aberdeenshire countryside begins to drive her insane…

That is, until she is rescued by a new friendship with the enchanting Valentina.

She has the perfect home, the perfect man, and a charismatic new best friend – or does she?

As her fairytale life begins to unravel, the deep dark wood becomes the least of her fears…

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Review: Late Harvest by Fiona Buckley | #BookReview

Late Harvest

Print Length: 256 pages

Publisher: Severn House Digital; First World Publication edition (June 1, 2016)

Publication Date: June 1, 2016

Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

ASIN: B01ELBIBA4

Purchase Link: Amazon

 

FictionZeal’s Review:

The prologue hints that the story will be a flashback.  Peggy is nearly eighty years old in 1860.  She reflects back to 1800 and how she met and fell in love with Ralph Duggan.  Of her memories, she narrates, “There are two nights that I recall especially.  On both of them, the moonlight was so bright that the Bristol Channel could have been made of molten silver.  On one of those nights, a child was conceived.  On the other, a man died.”

Her flashback begins when Peggy Shawe, her mother, and their neighbors were walking behind the cart carrying her father’s coffin.  Josiah Duggan and his two sons, Ralph and Philip, were among the mourners, as her father had business dealings with them.  When Peggy met Ralph, they seemed to have instant rapport.  But, he wasn’t the man everyone assumed she would marry.  James Bright, a close neighbor and farmer, was her presumed husband to be.  When James actually asked her to marry him, she put him off.  Instead she accepted a marriage proposal from Ralph.  Ralph’s family were ‘free traders’ (smugglers) and Peggy’s mother was against her daughter marrying him.  However, Peggy would soon be eighteen.  Her mother reluctantly agreed, Ralph bought the ring, and life seemed cheery.  But, Ralph had to leave suddenly, taking his brother away after Philip is accused of murder.  Their futures are no longer certain and cherished plans have a way of refusing to cooperate.

Many of these characters made bad decisions, and that’s realistic and part of life.  No matter how many times we as readers stand on the sidelines and try to shake some sense into them, they’re still going to break each other’s heart, and quite possibly break our hearts for them along the way.  The story started out so strongly, I thought it was going to be one of those ‘I don’t want it to end’ books.  However, several chapters prior to the end, it fell into a summary type of writing, presenting many additional characters that had not been given sufficient character depth to make me care about them.  Overall, it was a fascinating look at life in that time period, their way of life, and their hardships.  Rating: 3 out of 5.

3 spectacles

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Review: Promises by Ardyce Durham | #BookReview

Promises

Print Length: 389 pages

Publisher: Sarah Book Publishing; First edition (February 11, 2016)

Publication Date: February 11, 2016

Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

ASIN: B01BPKYDJC

Purchase Link: Amazon

 

FictionZeal’s Review:

The first paragraph of the ‘Author’s Note’ summarizes the story best.  “This book was inspired by the life of my paternal great-grandfather.  He was born in Tennessee but grew up in Mississippi where he lived out his life.  He fought in and survived some of the most horrific battles of the Civil War.”

Owen Cartwright and the neighbor boy, Weston Walker (Wes), had a very tight friendship.  Where you found one, you were bound to find the other.  They drove their parents crazy getting into all kinds of trouble together.  As they grew, they continued to be close.  When their fathers lost their jobs with the sawmill, they had to move from Tennessee to Mississippi.  In March 1862, they went to war as soldiers for the Confederate army.  Owen lived through the war; Wes did not.  He lost his life in Gettysburg.

The prologue was a critique of ‘Friendship’.  Truly, this fictional work is all about the earnest friendship between two boys that lasted them throughout their lives.  The epilogue provided various News Releases.  The first was dated November 2, 1941, and I suppose it wouldn’t be a spoiler to let you know it is a bit of a tribute to Owen Patterson Cartwright.  I loved that the release helped to fill in the background of this very lively, very real, Civil War era character.  It is listed as Historical Fiction, but it read more like a journal or a memoir.  It was like listening to your older relatives reveal their past exploits, both good and bad.  Interesting?  Yes.  Constructed as a story with a plot?  No.  However, I can certainly appreciate the concentrated research done by Ms. Durham in order to bring us this, her debut novel.  Rating: 3 out of 5.

3 spectacles

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Review: Dead Money Run (Lou Malloy Crime #1) by J. Frank James | #BookReview

Print Length: 302 pages

Publisher: J. Frank James LLC; 1 edition (August 12, 2013)

Publication Date: August 12, 2013

Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

ASIN: B00EJ7108G

Purchase Link: Amazon

 

FictionZeal’s Review:

Lou Mallory had no sooner been released from the Atlanta Penitentiary than trouble started.  Two guys were waiting in a Lincoln Town Car offering him a ride.  Actually, it was not a polite offer; it was more of a demand.  Just about that time, a prison guard came back through the gate.  Lou asked him to call a cab for him.  Fifteen million.  That’s the amount of money he’d stolen from a casino.  And, fifteen years later, no one had found it.  He took the cab to a bus depot and headed to Jacksonville Beach.

His first order of business was to find out who’d killed his sister, Susan, while he was doing his time.  Hilary Kelly met him at the depot.  She’s a PI.  He didn’t know her, but it didn’t take long for her to confess she’d been hired by the insurance company who was out $15 Mil to befriend his sister and find out the location of the hidden dough.  But she didn’t anticipate becoming friends with Susan; she no longer wanted to fulfil the job.  Lou and Hilary are about to find out that powerful people who are money hungry won’t stop at anything to get what they want.

Lou is not your typical ‘good guy’.  In fact, he’s a ‘bad guy’, but this is one of those books that will have you rooting for the bad guy.  Lou is snarky and brash – a ‘shoot now; ask questions later’ type of guy.  I liked the addition of Crusher to the Lou / Hilary team.  He had been a pro-wrestler and a former inmate with Lou.  Now, Crusher has Lou’s back.  If you like your suspense hard-boiled, this novel will surely peak your interest.  Rating: 4 out of 5.

4 spectacles

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Book Tour, Excerpt & Giveaway: Sharpe Shooter (Cozy Suburbs Mystery Series # 1) by Lisa B. Thomas

sharpe shooter large banner 640

Sharpe Shooter
(Cozy Suburbs Mystery Series Book 1)

Cozy Mystery
Self Published (March 19, 2015)
Paperback: 202 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1514114346
E-Book ASIN: B00UZLDFYW

Purchase Link: Amazon

 

Synopsis:

Burned-out high school teacher Deena Sharpe is ready for a change. She has no idea a fifty-year-old murder case is about to turn her life upside down.

The Perry County Sheriff’s office has found a skeleton in the closet…literally. When they identify the man’s body fifty years after his disappearance, his family turns to Deena to uncover the truth about his murder. The clock begins ticking when she discovers a mysterious writer is about to implicate the victim in his latest conspiracy theory book. She must channel her inner super-sleuth to solve the puzzle and protect her family name. With the help of her off-beat brother and others from the cozy town of Maycroft, Texas, Deena takes on a quest that leads to more questions than answers.

Sharpe Shooter is the first book in the Cozy Suburbs Mystery Series. With antique shopping, car chases, and ghosts in the night, the story will keep you guessing as you follow Deena on her quest for the truth.

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Review: Skeleton Run by John L. DeBoer | #BookReview

Skeleton Run

Print Length: 273 pages

Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1940215455

Publisher: Red Adept Publishing, LLC (April 14, 2015)

Publication Date: April 14, 2015

Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

ASIN: B00V5FWG3I

Purchase Link: Amazon

 

FictionZeal’s Review:

This is about how ugly human nature can be — the ‘think of yourself first’ mentality.  They were just boys in 1995; freshmen at the University of Vermont.  They’d been drinking.  It was a bad night with snow and low visibility.  They didn’t see the car in front of them until it was too late.  One of them checked the driver.  Dead.  In the back seat, a baby lay snuggled in a car seat in a blanket.  It was alive.  They left the scene.  The baby would be fine.  They’d call 911 when they got back to the dorm.  Jim Dawson reflected the consequences of reporting themselves, “In the short term, I’d be grounded for sure.  But I could imagine how this incident could forever mar my reputation.  I’d be one of ‘those boys’ – the drunken teenagers on a joyride who killed a woman.”

Things have a way of coming back on you.  Twenty years later, one of the four is dying of AIDS.  He calls his friends together while he’s in the hospital.  What he admits to them is how the ‘incident’ has continued to haunt him all this time.  He didn’t realize when he began talking that the nurse was still present.  They all have reputations that could be forever damaged if someone reports them.  Jim is a doctor; Bob Krechman is a retired football player; and Al Granger, who has the most to lose, is the Governor of Pennsylvania and considering a Presidential bid.

We see this story from many different angles.  We have the boys themselves; their wives and families; the nurse who just happens to know the baby, now grown; and Granger’s backers who have a personal interest in his campaign.  The story is told from Jim Dawson’s perspective.  He had not even told his wife of their secret until now when the future had become so uncertain.  The only aspect that was too unbelievable was that it was built upon coincidence that the nurse knew the man who’d been orphaned.  This is an engrossing tale of how these three men will withstand having their reputations destroyed.  How far will they go to save those reputations?  Rating: 4 out of 5.

4 spectacles

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