December Audible Reads #audible #audiobooks

Here are my December Audible reads and I enjoyed all of these. The best out of this bunch is Night Road. This was a reread for me. There was a buddy read over on Litsy and I wanted to participate. Boy, I forgot what a tear jerker it is.

Dead Wake is a book recommend to me by my friend Elizabeth over at Silversreviews. It is about the sinking of the Lusitania. Very informative and great read. I loved it.

I cannot believe I have never read In Cold Blood. I have finally knocked it out. I did not enjoy it as much as I expected. It was good but, I am glad I listened to it and didn’t hold the book in my hand. I probably would have bailed on it.

Now, what to say about Unraveling Oliver.…hmmmm. This book received a lot of hype at Book Expo 2017. It is a little slow. But, it is worth it to get to the ending.

HAPPY READING!

Dead Wake

Unraveling Oliver

In Cold Blood

Night Road

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The Chateau by the River by Chloé Duval #romance #fiction

Overview

A faded photograph will lead one young woman to a ruined French castle where she will discover the truth of her own identity . . . and the enduring mystery of love. 
  
Traveling to France on business, Alexandra Dawson has decided to seize the opportunity to explore a mysterious piece of her own heritage—a half-burnt picture of a woman who looks eerily like her, taken more than a hundred years ago in a local castle. In the charming rural village of Chandeniers, she discovers something else too—the gruff, ruggedly good-looking heir of the crumbled chateau.
Eric Lagnel is completely uninterested in Alex’s queries, until he realizes that she may have stumbled on a way to save the building. Their unlikely partnership is a surprise. But as Alex slowly unravels the secrets of her great-great-grandmother’s photograph—and the true history of the chateau—she begins to understand that no one is ever prepared for the ways love can heal old wounds and open the hardest hearts.
Review
Alexandra has found a photograph from the past. It has captured her imagination. When she is in Europe for business, she decides to take a side trip to investigate the chateau in the photo. The owner of the chateau is a man named Eric and he is not happy to see her.
I disliked Eric right from the start. He is very rough around the edges and just plain rude. But as the story developed, he sort of grew on me. He and Alex have a strange relationship which grows into much more than expected. Took a while and it was a struggle, but they made it in the end.
This tale captivated me from the very beginning.  The historical setting of the chateau and the troubles surrounding the upkeep are fascinating. Then the relationship between Eric and Alex…well, let’s just say, it is not a bed of roses. These two do team up FINALLY to try and save the chateau.
I enjoyed this read. The history, the setting, and the characters are a great combination.
I received this novel from Kensington Press via Netgalley for a honest review.
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Into the Night by Sarah Bailey #review #crimefiction

Overview

After the shocking murder of a high-profile celebrity, Gemma Woodstock must pull back the layers of a gilded cage to discover who among the victim’s friends and family can be trusted–and who may be the killer.

Troubled and brilliant, Detective Sergeant Gemma Woodstock finds herself lost and alone after a recent move to Melbourne, brokenhearted by the decisions she’s had to make. Her new workplace is a minefield and Detective Sergeant Nick Fleet, the partner she has been assigned, is uncommunicative and often hostile. When a homeless man is murdered and Gemma is put on the case, she can’t help feeling a connection with the victim and his lonely, isolated existence.

Then Sterling Wade, an up-and-coming actor filming his breakout performance in a closed-off city street, is murdered in the middle of an action-packed shot, and Gemma and Nick have to put aside their differences to unravel the mysteries surrounding the actor’s life and death. Who could commit such a brazen crime? Who stands to profit from it? Far too many people, and none of them can be trusted. Gemma can’t imagine a pair of victims with less in common–and yet as Gemma and Fleet soon learn, both men were keeping secrets that may have led to their deaths.

With riveting suspense, razor-sharp writing, and a fascinating cast of characters, INTO THE NIGHT proves Sarah Bailey is a major new talent to watch in the world of literary crime fiction.

Review

Gemma is in a whole new place, mentally and physically. She has moved to Melbourne for a new start. She has a new partner which is, to say the least, very unfriendly. Plus, she has been placed on the biggest case of her career. Someone has murdered Sterling Wade during a movie production. The murder has actually been caught on film. But, it is not as cut and dried as she thinks it is.

I will be honest. I did not like The Dark Lake, the first book in this series. I really disliked Gemma in that tale. I did not feel that way in this one. She came across as so sad. Her sadness just oozes off the page. Then her intellect comes out.

It has been a while since I have read a really good crime fiction. Crime fiction is different from a suspenseful read. It moves slower, but they are smart reads. You have to use your brain! I love how this story plays out. I was constantly guessing who did this and who did that. This story is interwoven with great characters and it is a wonderful guessing game.

Head over to my instagram for a giveaway,@reecaspiecesbooks. I have 2 copies up for grabs. Instagram

I received this novel from Grand Central Publishing via Netgalley for a honest review.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sarah Bailey was born in Melbourne, Australia, where she has lived all her life and currently resides with her two young sons. She has a degree in journalism and has a career in advertising. She is currently a partner at the creative agency Mr Smith.

Website: https://www.sarahbaileyauthor.com

Facebook: @sarahbaileyauthor

Twitter: @sarahbailey1982

Instagram: @sb_did_it

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The Collector by Fiona Cummins #review #suspense #crimefiction #fiction

Overview

A taut and terrifying psychological thriller from a the author of Rattle

The Collector by Fiona Cummins is the gripping sequel to Rattle.

Jakey escaped with his life and moved to a new town. His rescue was a miracle but his parents know that the Collector is still out there, watching, waiting…

Clara, the girl he left behind, is clinging to the hope that someone will come and save her.

Life has fallen apart for Clara’s mother as she starts to lose hope.

The Bone Collector has a new apprentice to take over his family’s legacy. But he can’t forget the boy who got away and the detective who had destroyed his dreams.

Detective Etta Fitzroy’s life collapsed when the Collector escaped. With Clara still missing, and a new wave of uncannily similar murders beginning, will she be able to find him again?

The Collector is back and this time he has nothing to lose.

Review

Detective Fitzroy is determined to capture The Bone Collector. She missed him previously and she will not let it happen a second time. Now, if she can only find him in time to save Clara. Clara has been kidnapped by The Bone Collector and time is running out. Detective Fitzroy knows she must step up her game to win this war!

The Bone Collector is enlisting some help. He has found him a young apprentice. He is planning on using this new apprentice to lure Jakey back into his web. Then there is Clara. She has been alive too long. She has to be dealt with soon.

I have not read the first book in this series. I would recommend reading it first. I would have understood Jakey’s plight a little sooner. It took me several pages to figure out…he was the one that got away.

This tale started out fairly slow. I almost bailed. But then it picked up and turned into pretty fantastic read. Once the anticipation kicks in, this novel becomes riveting. Not sure I want to ever encounter the pure evil of the Bone Collector —-SHIVER!

I received this novel from Macmillan Publishing via Netgalley for a honest review

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Becoming Mrs. Lewis by Patti Callahan #bookspotlight #historicalfiction

Overview

In a most improbable friendship, she found love. In a world where women were silenced, she found her voice.

From New York Times bestselling author Patti Callahan comes an exquisite novel of Joy Davidman, the woman C. S. Lewis called “my whole world.” When poet and writer Joy Davidman began writing letters to C. S. Lewis—known as Jack—she was looking for spiritual answers, not love. Love, after all, wasn’t holding together her crumbling marriage. Everything about New Yorker Joy seemed ill-matched for an Oxford don and the beloved writer of Narnia, yet their minds bonded over their letters. Embarking on the adventure of her life, Joy traveled from America to England and back again, facing heartbreak and poverty, discovering friendship and faith, and against all odds, finding a love that even the threat of death couldn’t destroy.

In this masterful exploration of one of the greatest love stories of modern times, we meet a brilliant writer, a fiercely independent mother, and a passionate woman who changed the life of this respected author and inspired books that still enchant us and change us. Joy lived at a time when women weren’t meant to have a voice—and yet her love for Jack gave them both voices they didn’t know they had.

At once a fascinating historical novel and a glimpse into a writer’s life, Becoming Mrs. Lewis is above all a love story—a love of literature and ideas and a love between a husband and wife that, in the end, was not impossible at all.

About the Author

Patti Callahan Henry is a New York Times bestselling author of Losing the Moon; Where the River Runs; When Light Breaks; Between the Tides; The Art of Keeping Secrets; Driftwood Summer; The Perfect Love Song: A Holiday Story; Coming up for Air; And Then I Found You; The Stories We Tell; The Idea of Love and The Bookshop at Water’s End (July 2017). BECOMING MRS. LEWIS — The Improbable Love Story of Joy Davidman and C. S. Lewis is out October 9th, 2018 by Harper Collins/Thomas Nelson.

A finalist in the Townsend Prize for Fiction, an Indie Next Pick, an OKRA pick, and a multiple nominee for the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) Novel of the Year, Patti is published in nine languages. Her articles and essays have appeared in Southern Living, PINK, Writer’s Digest, Birmingham Magazine and more. Patti is a frequent speaker and luncheons, book clubs and women’s groups.

Growing up in Philadelphia as the daughter of a Presbyterian minister, Patti learned early the value of storytelling. At the age of twelve, her family moved to South Florida where Patti found the sanctuary of libraries and began her slow but steady journey into understanding the power of story to navigate confusing times in life.

Patti attended Auburn University for her undergraduate work, and Georgia State University for her graduate degree. Once a Pediatric Clinical Nurse Specialist, she now writes full time. The mother of three children, she now lives in both Mountain Brook, Alabama and Bluffton, South Carolina with her husband.

This is not the best picture I met this sweet lady at book expo! I can’t believe I have not read this book yet. The cover is fantastic!

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Spider’s Web by Shannon Condon #review #excerpt #suspense #thriller

Spider’s Web (#3 in Magdalena Series)

By Shannon Condon

Genre: Action/Suspense/Thriller

About the Book

Over three years have passed since Maggie’s near fatal injury. Initially, she was happy to return home to the calm of everyday life. Time has given her a false sense of security. She no longer feels threatened by her old enemies. She becomes depressed and frustrated.  She is restless running the team’s special ops missions from the safety of the Grid. To appease her and hopefully relieve her cabin fever, Shep plans a girls’ weekend for her and Celeste. No sooner does she re-enter the real world when her past finds her. Separated from her team, Maggie must use all her resources to save herself and others. She soon learns she cannot control every outcome.  In an instant, Maggie’s life is forever changed. Unsure who to trust, Maggie tries to navigate her new reality. Will she be able to choose her future or will she remain trapped in the web of enemies she has created?

Review

Maggie has had a hard go of it lately. She is recovering from an injury which has taken her out of a job she loves. She is depressed and needs a change of scenery. She agrees to a girls weekend. It is what she needs, right? Until it isn’t. She must overcome her fears to save herself and others.

When I first read about Maggie, I was not sure I was going to like her. She whined and good bit and that got on my nerves. But, as the story unfolded she got her backbone and turned into a great character. As a matter fact, she is a person not to be messed with. Her “smarts” keep her alive and kicking.

This is a quick, enjoyable, edge of your seat read. I love all the twists and turns. Maggie has no clue who is to be trusted. The web of lies and deceit really keep you guessing.

I have not read the other books in this series, so this one can be picked up and read alone. I will go back and get the others, of course. You can never have too many good books!

About the Author

Shannon Condon is the mother of three boys and lives in Greensboro, North Carolina. She graduated from the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida. She loves to travel and is fascinated by history.  She has always wanted to be a writer and with the publication of the Magdalena Series: Finding Magdalena, The Brotherhood and now Spider’s Web (release date  November 30, 2018), she has brought that dream to fruition.

On Twitter: https://twitter.com/shannonecondon1

Website: https://shannoncondonauthor.com/

On Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42074887-spider-s-web

Barnes and Noble: https://bit.ly/2R0DGGk

On Amazon: https://amzn.to/2zALmrY

Excerpt:

“Okay, guys, let’s run through this one more time before you head in,” Maggie  said, trying to keep the tension out of her voice.

“Maggie, we’ve been over this three times already,” complained Bernardo.

“Cut me some slack. Once you enter that building, I’m blind. I’m sitting in this basement trying to provide logistics and keep the three of you alive during this mission. I only have access to the street cameras, nothing inside the building,” Maggie said, her frustration growing.

“Go over it again, Maggie,” Shep said calmly. “This mission is too important to miss a step. We’re listening.”

Maggie took a deep breath. Shep, Bernardo and Nate were in a van a few blocks from the target building in Bern, Switzerland, while she was sitting in front of several computer screens, safe in the control room in the basement of the Shepherd home.

“All right.” She was in her professional logistics mode. “You are going to enter the stairwell on the northwest end of the building. Use the security swipe card I gave you to gain entrance. Before you enter the stairwell, make sure your masks are on. There are cameras everywhere; we don’t want you being identified later when they watch the tapes. When you get to the tenth floor, you will need to swipe the card again. The door will open toward you. There is an infrared security system. You will need to put your goggles on and crawl under it toward the office door straight ahead of you. My source said he would leave the door unlocked. Once you are all inside, close the door behind you and let me know you are in. Don’t touch the computer until I tell you, and leave your masks on. All good?” Maggie asked. She heard three yeses and sat back in her chair, watching them exit the van and move toward the building. She could hack the available street cameras, but the security was so tight inside the office building that she couldn’t get in without triggering the alarm. She watched them enter the stairwell and looked at her watch while she envisioned them going through the steps. She didn’t realize she had been holding her breath until she heard Shep’s voice in her ear letting her know they were safely in the office.

“Okay, baby girl. I’m in front of the computer; it’s on and waiting for the password, just like you said it would be. Waiting on your instructions.”

“Once you put in the password, off-site IT security will get a heads up that D’Angelo’s computer is in use. They’ll give him a courtesy call on his cell. When he tells IT he’s not using his computer, you will have ten minutes before security shows up. Can you adjust your camera so I can see the screen?”

“I’m sitting in his chair with my camera chest high. Can you see?” Shep asked.

“Yes, perfect,” Maggie answered. “Enter the password and then go right to his directory.” Maggie watched as Shep did as she asked. There were about twenty folders. “Are you seeing what I’m seeing, Maggie?” Shep asked.

“Yup. All the folders appear to be customer names except the photo file.”

“Most people have a photo file on their computer,” Nate chimed in.

“Look around his office for me. Does he have any family pictures or anything personal there?” Maggie asked.

“No, it’s completely sterile,” Nate answered.

“Shep, that’s our folder, but let’s open it to check.” Shep opened the folder, and it showed an array of files dealing with uranium and yellowcake. Maggie scanned them quickly. “Looks good. Let’s put the flash drive in and start copying. It should only take a few minutes. We have seven and a half minutes until security arrives, by my count,” Maggie directed.

“It’s copying. Man, it’s a big file.”

“Bernardo, go to the outside window and open it and get the rappel ropes ready. Security is going to use the same staircase you did. You are going to have to rappel down from where you are,” Maggie said.

“The window doesn’t open,” Bernardo said.

Maggie’s impatience was running high again. She really needed to talk to Shep when he got back. She looked at her watch. They had less than six minutes until security arrived.

“Bernardo, you have an M4 in your hands. Make the window open,” Maggie said, a little more harshly than she meant to.

“Maggie, there’s a building across from me. I don’t want to hit anyone with stray bullets.”

“I’ve done my job, Bernardo. It’s an abandoned warehouse—it’s empty. You now have four and a half minutes to get out of there,” Maggie said, then asked, “Shep, where are you on the copying?”

“I’m at ninety percent, almost there.” Maggie could hear the pinging of Bernardo’s gun taking out the window.

“Starting our exit,” Bernardo said in a professional tone. He was angry with her, but Maggie couldn’t deal with that right now.

“I’ve got the flash drive and am the last one out the window,” Shep reported. Maggie sighed. They’d had only a minute to spare.

“The security van is in the alley directly to your left. They are all filing into the stairwell.” A tense thirty seconds passed as the three men stood pressed against the building wall. “Okay, it should be clear, but keep low in case the driver is still in the van.” Maggie watched tensely as they successfully passed the security van. “All right, two more blocks up. Our van is waiting in the same location as when we started.”

Her team ran the distance and piled into the van. It pulled into traffic with no one following them.

“Looks like you’re in the clear. Great job, guys. Shep, would you call me once you’re settled on the plane?” Maggie asked. She hated that the agitation in her voice was so palpable.

“Sure thing, Maggie. I don’t know what we’d do without you.”

Maggie pulled her headphones out and burst into tears.

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COVER REVEAL! Best Southern series ever! Slightly South rof Paradise by Kristy Woodson Harvey #coverreveal

GET READY……DRUM ROLL….DA DA DAAAA

AIN’T IT GORGEOUS!

From internationally bestselling author and “rising star of Southern fiction” (Mary Alice Monroe, New York Times bestselling author) Kristy Woodson Harvey comes the third novel in her Peachtree Bluff series, in which a secret threatens the tight-knit bond between a trio of sisters and their mother.

With the man of her dreams back in her life and all three of her daughters happy, Ansley Murphy should be content. But she can’t help but feel like it’s all a little too good to be true.

Meanwhile, youngest daughter and actress Emerson, who is recently engaged and has just landed the role of a lifetime, seemingly has the world by the tail. Only, something she can’t quite put her finger on is worrying her—and it has nothing to do with her recent health scare.

When two new women arrive in Peachtree Bluff—one who has the potential to wreck Ansley’s happiness and one who could tear Emerson’s world apart—everything is put in perspective. And after secrets that were never meant to be told come to light, the powerful bond between the Murphy sisters and their mother comes crumbling down, testing their devotion to each other and forcing them to evaluate the meaning of family.

With Kristy Woodson Harvey’s signature charm, wit, and heart, The Southern Side of Paradise is another masterful Peachtree Bluff novel that proves she is a “Southern writer with staying power” (Booklist).

“One of the hottest new Southern writers.” —Parade.com

“Writers come and writers go, but Kristy Woodson Harvey is here to stay. The warmth, wit, and wisdom of this novel pave her way into the exclusive sisterhood of southern writers.” —The Huffington Post

“The south is known for breeding brilliant storytellers and Kristy Woodson Harvey has proven herself to be one of the south’s most heartfelt female driven authors of our generation.”—Jaime Pressly, star of CBS’s Mom

I absolutely CAN NOT WAIT!

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