Tuesday, January 30

Audiobook Review: Soul Taken by Patricia Briggs

Author: Patricia Briggs
Narrator: Lorelei King
Title: Soul Taken
Series: Mercy Thompson #13
Genre: UF, Paranormal, Fantasy, & Romance
Format: Audiobook
Published: August 23, 2022
Where I got It: Borrowed from library

The vampire Wulfe is missing. Since he’s deadly, possibly insane, and his current idea of “fun” is stalking me, some may see it as no great loss. But, warned that his disappearance might bring down the carefully constructed alliances that keep our pack safe, my mate and I must find Wulfe—and hope he’s still alive. As alive as a vampire can be, anyway.

But Wulfe isn’t the only one who has disappeared. And now there are bodies, too. Has the Harvester returned to the Tri-Cities, reaping souls with his cursed sickle? Or is he just a character from a B horror movie and our enemy is someone else?

The farther I follow Wulfe’s trail, the more twisted—and darker—the path becomes. I need to figure out what’s going on before the next body on the ground is mine.

Dang....I am all caught up in the series. Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!!! Yes, a new one is coming out soon but ya girl went ahead and applied to get the advanced copy to read and review. *fingers crossed* I literally can't wait. 

But anyway....poor Mercy and the gang. The vampire Wulfe is missing and they are warned if they don't find him it will destroy their fragile alliance with the vamps. As it turns out Wulfe isn't the only one who has disappeared. Bodies are piling up. Could it really be the Harvester returned to the Tri-Cities? Isn't that just a character from a B horror movie? Well....it is up to Mercy and the pack to solve it all. 

This was intense. There is a lot on the line. However, in the first couple of chapters we got to see some calm and that made me happy. I honestly would like a short story to be chill and cozy. It can be like 25 pages and I would be happy. Mercy and the pack need a serious vacation and break from the insanity. 

This baddie was a good baddie. Interesting and different. Loved it. 

Ooo! I did love that we got to see a little bit of Adam's POV. It was a nice break. Don't get me wrong I LOVE Mercy, but it's fresh to see stuff through another's eyes. In a way...I feel like we get to learn more about Mercy that way too. I hope we get more of Adam's POV in the future. I wanted more dangit!

But yes, this was good. I really enjoyed it. The ending makes me nervous but anxious to get my hands on the next book. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE. 

The narrator is flawless as per normal. She better narrate more going forward ;) 

In the end, I enjoyed it. A nice bad guys. Some fun moments. Some scary moments. And an ending that has me wanting...no...needing to see what happens next. 4 stars from me. 

- Audiobook Challenge - #6
- Library Love Challenge - #3

Monday, January 29

Blodeuedd Reviews: The Lost Metal by Brandon Sanderson

Series: The Mistborn Saga (#7), Mistborn: Wax & Wayne (#4), The Cosmere (#13)

Format: 507 pages, Paperback

Published: November 15, 2022 by Gollancz


My love for Sanderson is dying. He turns out books like crazy, BUT, still there are years between books in a series so when I finally get to a book I do not remember anything. And if I had to re-read that is all I would do. I can not remember other books so all this Cosmere stuff is lost on me and there was so much.

It was good. But at the same time yes....I have stopped caring.

I do not even feel like writing anything. Too many projects man! Chill pill please.

Ok so this is all negative, but I have just reached that point where I can not keep track of everything cos there is too much and too much time in between.

For years, frontier lawman turned big-city senator Waxillium Ladrian has hunted the shadowy organization the Set—with his late uncle and his sister among their leaders—since they started kidnapping people with the power of Allomancy in their bloodlines. When Detective Marasi Colms and her partner, Wayne, find stockpiled weapons bound for the Outer City of Bilming, this opens a new lead. Conflict between the capital, Elendel, and the Outer Cities only favors the Set, and their tendrils now reach to the Elendel Senate—whose corruption Wax and his wife, Steris, have sought to expose—and Bilming is even more entangled.

After Wax discovers a new type of explosive that can unleash unprecedented destruction and realizes that the Set must already have it, an immortal kandra serving Scadrial's god, Harmony, reveals that Bilming has fallen under the influence of another god: Trell, worshipped by the Set. And Trell isn't the only factor at play from the larger Cosmere—Marasi is recruited by offworlders with strange abilities who claim their goal is to protect Scadrial . . . at any cost.

Wax must choose whether to set aside his rocky relationship with God and once again become the Sword that Harmony has groomed him to be. If no one steps forward to be the hero Scadrial needs, the planet and its millions of people will come to a sudden and calamitous ruin.

Saturday, January 27

Movie Review: The Proposal (2009)

The Proposal
Length: 1h 48m
Released: 2009
Genre:  Comedy, Drama, Romance
Rating: PG-13
Where I Got It: Hulu 

A pushy boss forces her young assistant to marry her in order to keep her visa status in the U.S. and avoid deportation to Canada.


I am already failing at watching a movie a week. It's already the end of January and all I've watched is this movie and re-watched 'Crazy Rich Asians' for the millionth time. Sighs. 

Okay - so here we follow Margaret who is a tough-ass boss and her assistant Andrew. Andrew and the rest of the office hate her. She is tough and mean and cold. Andrew has ambitions to take to be an editor someday, so he is sticking around. Margaret is about to face deportation and if she leaves she loses her job.....so she comes up with an idea to bribe Andrew to marry her and give him the job of the editor. To keep up with appearances, Margaret joins Andrew to visit his parents in Alaska. 

I love both of these actors so I'm shocked it took me THIS long (it came out in 2009) to watch it. Eee. #badfan. 

This was is a typical Romantic Comedy mixed with Hallmark Bad-Bitch-Boss. She is cold from heartbreaks and he is a kind soul. He defrosts her and they fall in love. 

Betty White was in here and I loved her. She is always a gem. 

This was funny with some cringe moments that make you laugh even harder. 

A fun movie for when you need to laugh. It was pretty predictable though. 

3 stars. 

Friday, January 26

Book Review: Shoot the Horses First by Leah Angstman

Author: Leah Angstman
Title: Shoot the Horses First
Genre: Historical Fiction, Short Stories, Anthology
Format: Paperback
Pages: 238
Published: February 28, 2023
Where I Got It: My Shelf (Given a complimentary copy after the book tour)

Through a historian’s lens and folkloric storytelling, the pieces in SHOOT THE HORSES FIRST revel in the nuances, brutality, mythology, and tiny victories of our historical past. A launderer takes us inside the linens of the richest families in early Baltimore. A child on the Orphan Train has his teeth inspected like a horse. Civil War soldiers experience PTSD. While one woman lands on an island of the Wampanoag tribe, a woman 200 years later finds Apache in a harsh frontier. Children survive yellow fever, the desert heat, and mistaken identities; men survive severed fingers, untested medicines, and wives with obsessive compulsive disorders. Frederick Douglass’ grandson plays violin at the World’s Fair on Colored American Day, a woman with disabilities is kept hidden away like she doesn’t exist, and a botanist is denied her place in a science journal because she is female. Themes of place, war, mental illness, identity, disability, feminism, and unyielding optimism throughout harrowing desperation resurface in this collection of stories that takes us back to time immemorial, yet feels so close, and all too familiar.

Been meaning to read this since I was given this as a gift, but you know how life gets ;) 

This is a collection of short stories that do not really tie into each other so you can read these individually which I appreciated. Normally with anthologies, I break down each short story. I am not going to do that. 1) There are 16 of them. 2) Some are soooo short. Maybe a page or two while others are pages and pages. 3) I am lazy and tired. 

Honestly, this was a nice collection of stories. We got to see different time periods and different types of characters. Some stories are feel-good. Some deeper. Some sad. Some...confusing. A nice variety overall. 

There are a couple that really, really stuck with me. I would LOVE to read more. 


'Casting Grand Titans'....WHAT! OMG. I have hopes and thoughts, but what does she decide???? I understand why she was upset BUT it was that time. I truly think he did what he thought was best. Ugh. This could be a full novel for shizzle. 

'In Name Only'.....this was good. I wanted to cry and cheer and scream. So many feels. 

'A Lifetime of Fishes'.....another one that should be a full-length novel. Probably my favorite of this whole collection. 

'The Desert Jewel'....this one surprised me. It started off meh but then TWIST and I ended up loving it. Can't blame him. 

Now, it did take me forever to get through this. Not because it was bad...it was all on me. I wanted to take my time with this guy. Some of these stories were super impactful so I wanted to take my time like this was a dry wine. Slow and steady. 

In the end, I highly recommend this. It was really good. Some stories were better than others, but there wasn't one I didn't like. 4 stars from me. 

Thursday, January 25

Audiobook Review: Victoria & Albert - A Royal Love Affair

Author: Daisy Goodwin & Sara Sheridan
Narrator: Jessica Ball & Dugald Bruce Lockhart
Title: Victoria and Albert - A Royal Love Affair
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography
Format: Audiobook
Published: September 21, 2017
Where I got It: Audible

The official companion to the second season of the PBS/Masterpiece drama Victoria by award-winning creator and screenwriter Daisy Goodwin.

More than 16 million viewers watched the first season of the Masterpiece presentation of Victoria, created and written by Daisy Goodwin--the highest-rated PBS drama in twenty years, second only to Downton Abbey. But what happened after the Queen married her handsome prince? Did they live happily ever after, or did their marriage, like so many royal marriages past and present, fizzle into a loveless round of duty?

This all-new companion book by Daisy Goodwin and Sara Sheridan transports us to the private world of Victoria and Albert. Though first cousins, they could not have been more different: Victoria was impulsive, emotional, and capricious, Albert cautious, self-controlled, and logical. But together they forged a bond with each other and with their people that would change the world. Drawing on letters and diaries and fresh insights into royal history, this gorgeous book charts the constant ebb and flow of power within the couple's surprisingly ardent and modern marriage.

Sumptuously illustrated and full of rich insider detail, Victoria and Albert takes us behind the scenes of the magnificent TV drama, including fascinating, in-depth information on the actors, the props, and the costumes - and bringing an extraordinary royal marriage even more fully to life.

Awww I adored this show and so I was excited to read not only this behind-the-scenes...but this informational about the Queen and her husband. 

In this, we hear from the creator and writer of the TV show 'Victoria'. She gives us some glimpses behind the scenes of the TV show and she gives us a history lesson about not only Victoria but of her husband and the time-period. 

If you haven't seen the show....do. It was so good. After listening to this I am tempted to go back and do a re-watch. Such a fun show with a great cast. 

Honestly, I would HIGHLY encourage watching the show first before diving into this. I do not think you'll truly appreciate this as much as you would after watching the show. There are lots and lots of references to the show. 

I loved the blend of information we got here. Not only did we get some historical lessons, but we got to learn about how they did the show. Between costumes and set design...to her writing process and learning about the time-period. It was all so interesting on so many different levels. I love history, but I am so intrigued by the creation of TV shows/movies. 

Now, I did do the audio version which was REALLY good...don't get me wrong...but I was reading a couple of reviews on Goodreads and I guess the ebook/physical has actual pictures. Gah! I'm bummed.

All-in-all, this was a nice informational about not only our epic duo, but of the time-period and the show that goes with it. I do wish I would've read it instead JUST so I could see the pictures, but the narration was really, really good. I'll give this 4 stars.

- Audiobook Challenge - #5

Wednesday, January 24

Book Review: Rafe by Kathy Ivan

Author: Kathy Ivan
Title: Rafe
Series: Texas Boudreau Brotherhood #1
Genre: Romantic Suspense, Mystery, & Western
Format: Paperback
Pages: 160
Published: April 14, 2020
Where I Got It: My Shelf (BookBub)

When Sheriff Rafe Boudreau catches Tessa Maxwell climbing through the window of a house where she doesn’t belong, the crime rate isn’t the only thing that spikes. Turns out, trouble has followed the small-town schoolteacher to Shiloh Springs, and Rafe and the rest of the Boudreau clan must step in to keep her safe. Can they decipher the clues and end the danger Tessa faces before time runs out?

This was a freebie I got from BookBub. I love Westerns, romances, and suspense....what could go wrong?

Here we follow Sheriff Rafe and Tessa. Rafe catches Tessa climbing through the window of a house that isn't hers. He doesn't know her so of course he is going to stop her. Turns out she is the new renter of the house and the new schoolteacher in their tiny town. However, it turns out trouble has followed Tessa and she will need all the help she can get. 

This was pretty quick and easy to read. There is some romance and suspense. Tessa is in danger and Rafe will help her. There was insta-lust, but the love took a moment, and that worked for me. 

I loved Rafe and his backstory. Poor kid, but I'm SO glad he found a loving family. 

I liked Tessa too after a bit. 

The mystery/suspense was pretty atypical, but it was entertaining. 

This was quick and entertaining. I feel like there could've been some more build-up and some more time with our characters. Honestly...I think it needed to be longer, but I liked it. I'll give this 4 stars. 

- Cloak and Dagger - #3 (Romantic Suspense/Mystery)
- Romance Reading Challenge - #3 (Romantic Suspense)

Tuesday, January 23

DNF Second Chance Announcement!

After the votes, it turned out we had a 4-way tie. Eeee. So I decided to do a wheel spin...yess....leaving it up to the Fate. 

Here is our first-ever DNF Second Chance pick!

I will try and get started on this in February! 

Again...here are my self-imposed rules: 

- The book must be sitting on the DNF shelf for over a year. Time heals wounds...right?

- Honor the poll choice

- Read at LEAST 125 pages before giving up. 

- Be completely and utterly honest

- If it is a physical book on my shelf and I DNF it again, I MUST rehome it.

If you want to do this idea for yourself, please feel free. It might become a thing going forward. We'll see how book 1 goes ;) 

Monday, January 22

Blodeuedd's Monday Review: White Oleander by Janet Fitch

Format: 446 pages, Paperback

Published: September 1, 2001 by Little, Brown and Company



This one was well written and also really disturbing. The main character Astrid is placed into foster care after her mother ends up in jail. Her flaky weird compelling mother. A poet who commits a crime of passion.

As for Astrid, oh this child turned teenager is effed up. Even at the end she seems to think she is writing her own story. No, you were used and abused by horrible grotesque men who should have known better. And women for that matter. It is disturbing because she is all in, while I on the outside find it horrifying. And she never seems to realise it.

I did not think I would enjoy it, but I did. In all its sadness

Everywhere hailed as a novel of rare beauty and power, White Oleander tells the unforgettable story of Ingrid, a brilliant poet imprisoned for murder, and her daughter, Astrid, whose odyssey through a series of Los Angeles foster homes--each its own universe, with its own laws, its own dangers, its own hard lessons to be learned--becomes a redeeming and surprising journey of self-discovery.

Thursday, January 18

Audiobook Review: Wild Sign by Patricia Briggs

Author: Patricia Briggs
Narrator: Holter Graham
Title: Wild Sign
Series: Alpha & Omega #6
Genre: Urban Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Published: March 16, 2021
Where I got It: Library

In the wilds of the Northern California mountains, all the inhabitants of a small town have gone missing. It's as if the people picked up and left everything they owned behind. Fearing something supernatural might be going on, the FBI taps a source they've consulted in the past: the werewolves Charles Cornick and Anna Latham. But Charles and Anna soon find a deserted town is the least of the mysteries they face.

Death sings in the forest, and when it calls, Charles and Anna must answer. Something has awakened in the heart of the California mountains, something old and dangerous — and it has met werewolves before.

Yayy! Finally catching up! I think I have one more Mercy book to get to before the new one comes out in 2024?!

When a whole small town has gone missing, the FBI turns to Charles and Anna to help. They fear something supernatural and scary is to blame. They aren't completely wrong. Something has awakened in the heart of the California mountains and it will be up to the pack to end it's song. 

This was SOOOO good. I've enjoyed Charles and Anna' stories, but they have all been just okay. This was the best of them all. I'm finally and fully settling into this couple. I feel like they need more books. We mainly focus on Mercy (which I love her to death), but we need to see them more often. 

Anna is coming into her own. Charles is loosening up a little bit. Love is a wonderful medicine. 

The mystery was sooooo good. Where did these witches go? What happened? What IS that THING in the woods? Why is Leah singing? So many questions. 

I will also say that I actually appreciate Leah more. She had a rough time of it and I'm slightly mad at Bran. He needs to open his heart a bit to her. Yes, I think he could have a better-fitting mate, but this is who he chose. He needs to put in some work. Love you, Bran! But this is your time to be better for Leah. *coughs* Never thought I would say these words. Don't get me wrong...Leah needs to do better too. They both need to sit down and talk. Go to therapy. You're lack-luster mating bond could and will put the pack in danger. I feel it in my bones. 

We got to meet some new types of supernatural so that was fun!

THAT ENDING!?!?!?!?!?!?!? WHAT!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!? You can't leave me like thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiisssssssssssssssss! When is the next one coming out? I know we have a Mercy one coming soon....but when will I see Anna again? CHARLESSSSSSSSSS! Ugh. Things are gonna happen. Big things with that last wee little twist. 

The narrator is good. Some girl voices are too similar, but guys typically have a harder time with the women's voices, so I won't fully hold it against him. 

All-in-all, this is my favorite of all the Charles/Anna books. I really enjoyed this one. I had zero idea how anything was going to be fixed or what was going to happen. So dang good. 5 stars from me. 

- Audiobook Challenge - #4
- Library Love Challenge - #2

Wednesday, January 17

Book Review: Legends & Lattes by Travis Baldree

Author: Travis Baldree
Title: Legends & Lattes
Series: Legends & Lattes #1
Genre: Fantasy, Cozy Mystery, Romance, & LGBT
Format: ebook
Pages: 296
Published: February 22, 2022
Where I Got It: My Shelf (Amazon)

After a lifetime of bounties and bloodshed, Viv is hanging up her sword for the last time.

The battle-weary orc aims to start fresh, opening the first ever coffee shop in the city of Thune. But old and new rivals stand in the way of success — not to mention the fact that no one has the faintest idea what coffee actually is.

If Viv wants to put the blade behind her and make her plans a reality, she won't be able to go it alone.

But the true rewards of the uncharted path are the travelers you meet along the way. And whether drawn together by ancient magic, flaky pastry, or a freshly brewed cup, they may become partners, family, and something deeper than she ever could have dreamed.

I have had my eye on this for a little while, but never pulled the trigger. Not sure why but just never did it. It was picked for book club, so I'm glad I'm finally getting the push I needed. 

Here we follow Viv who is hanging up her sword. She is done with adventure. She wants a quiet life and opens up the first-ever coffee shop in the city of Thune. Not only does old and new rivals stand in her way to success, but so does the fact that no one in this area knows what coffee is. 

If you like DND you would truly appreciate this. Heck, even if you don't know a lick about DND I think you would enjoy this too. There is fantasy, coffee, a cozy mystery, and a sprinkle of love. Very cozy indeed. 

Originally, I planned to count this as a book for my Romance Reading Challenge, BUT the romance element was SO small I would forget about it until something happened. Yes, there are some other moving parts going on so romance isn't the key element or focus......but I simply think there wasn't enough focus on it for it to be counted as a romance. I wish there had been more. This is def a PG-rated book, BUUUUUUUUUT there could've been more focus on Viv finding the love of her life. Bummer.

Now, this is super cozy. Even the mystery wasn't a huge deal. Rather simple and simplistic. It barely even rocked the boat. Which is fine for me. I want Viv happy so I'm glad she didn't have to deal with TOO much craziness. Yes, there is some, but nothing insane. 

Sometimes I did find this was TOO cozy. I think I would've loved it more if it was a short story instead. There were lots of dragged-out moments and explanations. It felt like a lot of fillers, to be honest. 

All-in-all, this was a very cozy story. Like I mentioned....some mystery, fantasy, coffee, and a teeny tiny sprinkle of romance. Literally just a teeny tiny cherry on top. I feel like there is great potential in this story. Maybe book 2 will spice up a tiny bit. This was a lot of build-up. Cute and fun, but sometimes it felt TOO cozy. I'll give this 3 stars. 


- Cloak and Dagger - #1 (Cozy mystery)

Tuesday, January 16

Second Chance for an Old DNF??

Second chance means: "An opportunity to try something again after failing one time"

One of my goals this year is to give one or two DNFs a second chance. New year, new me...right? Like people, sometimes they need a second chance. I went back to some of my oldest DNFs here in blogland.

Here are some self-imposed rules I have made: 

- The book must be sitting on the DNF shelf for over a year. Time heals wounds...right?

- Honor the poll choice

- Read at LEAST 125 pages before giving up. 

- Be completely and utterly honest

- If it is a physical book on my shelf and I DNF it again, I MUST rehome it.

What DNF Deserves a Second Chance?
Her Perfect Mate by Paige Tyler
The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly
Twin Souls by K.A Poe
Love on the Range by Sondra Grey
Royal Exile by Fiona McIntosh
Created with PollMaker

If there is a book I DNFed in the past that you think I should give a second chance to, put it in the comments! I plan to do at least 2 of these second chances this year, so maybe next time I will include the book you want on our next poll!

Monday, January 15

Blodeuedd's Monday Review: Four Day Fling by Emma Hart

By: Emma Hart

Narrated by: Nelson Hobbs, Melissa Moran

Length: 6 hrs and 49 mins

Release date: 02-26-19

Publisher: Tantor Audio

Contemporary romance / bookbeat

This one was funny. But srsly Poppy, prepare a bit.

Poppy meets a guy, hooks up, and then invites him to a wedding. See here is where Poppy and I do not prepare the same way. She is all, I need a fake date cos my family will be all over me! But like hello, maybe learn a bit more than what his name is. It does not take long, prepare a bit. Ack Poppy.

Her mother was horrible. Like ugh.

Adam is the sweetest. He does this for her, and they fall in lust and love. But have some drama to get over.

Funny, cute and I will totally read more by her

Great narration that kept me hooked. There were two narrators, but the female one was the one in charge, so when the first change happened it was weird. And he did not get a lot of room.

Imagine this. You’re ready to leave after a one-night stand, and you’re figuring out how to—shock horror—leave your number and ask him to be your fake boyfriend for your sister’s wedding this weekend. When he wakes up. Well, that happened to me. And over coffee and omelets, I found myself a date.

Which was how I ended up arriving at the wedding with a guy I knew nothing about. I didn’t know his last name, or how we met, or how long we’d been dating. I didn’t know where he grew up, what he’d majored in in college, or how many siblings he had. I sure as hell didn’t know he was Adam Winters, hotshot hockey player—and not only my father’s favorite player, but my little nephew’s freakin’ idol. Which means I’m in trouble. Big, big trouble. My mother is suspicious, my sister is bridezilla on crack, and my grandpa will tell anyone who’ll listen about his time in Amsterdam’s Red Light District. Four days. I have to keep this up for four days, and then Adam and I can return to our regular lives, where we don’t have sex whenever we’re alone and my family aren’t interrogating him over his intentions with me.

At least, that’s the plan. And we all know what happens to those.

Friday, January 12

Book Review: Never for Glory by Lloyd Lofthouse

Author: Lloyd Lofthouse
Title: Never for Glory
Series: Josh Kavanagh #2
Genre: Military Fiction, Action, Suspense, Thriller
Format: ebook
Pages: 259
Published: June 25, 2023
Where I Got It: My Shelf (Given to me by the author/publisher for my honest and unbiased opinion)

He’d give his life for his country. But this time, it’s personal.

Josh Kavanagh burns for vengeance. Parachuting with no backup into a lawless area of southern Venezuela, the Special Ops legend is intent on hunting down the rogue agent who put his wife in a coma. But as soon as he gets feet on the ground, the loyal protector discovers he’s dropped into a trap… and a sex trafficking operation run by the Russian mob.

Fighting his way out and desperate to rescue the victims with minimal body count, Josh plans a daring raid on a remote ranch. But after learning the identity of the mastermind behind the hit on a former lover, the talented operative takes the law into his own hands on a hell-bent solo mission for revenge…

Will Josh’s single-minded thirst for justice finish on the wrong side of a gun barrel?

Never for Glory is the pulse-pounding second book in the Josh Kavanagh thriller series. If you like determined heroes, tough conflict ripped from the headlines, and page-turning action, then you’ll love Lloyd Lofthouse’s pursuit of payback.

After reading the summary, I knew I had to check this out! I will admit, I was a little nervous.

Here we follow Josh Kavanagh. He burns for vengeance after his wife is put in a coma. After dropping into southern Venezuela, he soon realizes that he landed in a trap. He will have to fight his way out and bring down the sex trafficking operation run by a Russian mob and the mastermind behind the hit on his former lover. Will Josh succeed or find himself on the wrong side of a gun barrel?

Now, this is technically book 2 of the series. I didn't read book 1, but I had zero issues reading this. It did well as a standalone. Yes, some references are there about book 1, but the author did a good job of allowing the reader to understand enough to read forward. However...I am now curious about reading book 1 ;) 

Honestly, I was a little nervous when starting this. 1) this is book 2 - which I quickly realized this stands alone well and 2) My history with military-type books has been so hit-or-miss over the years. I am so picky when it comes to reading for a publisher/author so I didn't want this to be a miss. I took a gamble. Luck would have it that I quickly realized I liked the story! 

Josh is a gem. You can't help but root him on! I also adored his friend Cheete. Yes, he was a womanizer, but he was funny and very sweet. 

Oo! I also adored Adrienne!! I won't give anything away with her. Just know she is awesome. 

I must compliment the author. One of the issues I find with some military fiction is that the author gets a little heavy-handed with the military jargon. They get too stuck in the details to the point it feels like a textbook instead of a story. The author did a wonderful job balancing this. Yes, there is the jargon and we can tell the author knows what they are talking about, but a civvy like me can follow along easily enough and ENJOY what I'm reading. 

A nice set of characters and the plot was fun. Yes, seeking justice and blood is always classically fun. There is some darkness here, but with just enough comedy to combat the darkness. I really, really enjoyed this. I didn't and couldn't stop reading. I had to know what was going to happen to everyone and see the resolution. 

That scene with Cheete! Gah! I cheered but I also wanted to cry.

All-in-all, I found myself really enjoying this! I went into this a little weary, but I quickly found out that I liked this. Might I even say love? To be honest, I would like to read book 1 so I can understand Josh and some of the others better. I'm sure there is some history I'm missing out on. This has a good set of characters, an exciting plot, and it will make you feel. I'll give this 5 stars. I had zero issues with it and I didn't want to stop reading!!


- Cloak and Dagger - #1 (Thriller/Suspense)

Wednesday, January 10

Audiobook Review: Christmas Eve 1914 by Charles Olivier

Author: Charles Olivier
Narrator: Cameron DaddoXander BerkeleyCody FernDamon HerrimanJames ScottJohn BeckLance GuestGabe Greenspan, & Heiko Obermoeller
Title: Christmas Eve 1914
Genre: Historical Fiction, Short Stories, & Military Fiction
Format: Audiobook
Published: December 16, 2014
Where I got It: My shelf (Audible)

In 1914, the war which was to have been wrapped up by Christmas had - in reality - only just begun, as all sides entrenched themselves deeper into the Great War. Christmas Eve, 1914 follows one company of British officers as they rotate forward to spend their Christmas on the front lines, a mere 80 yards from the German guns. Upper- and working-class men and boys are thrown together into one trench and struggle to survive. Beyond the exploding shells and artillery, the merciless freezing cold, extreme hunger, and crushing exhaustion, these young men - both British and German - discover a miracle of grace, as enemies becomes friends and an impossible Christmas finally arrives.

Meant to read this at the end of last year when I picked it up (when it was free), but you know how life gets ;) 

It is 1914 and the war was supposed to be done by Christmas, but it had only just begun. Both sides are entrenched and scared and cold and sad to be missing Christmas at home. Here we follow one British company as they rotate forward to spend their Christmas on the front lines...a mere 80 yards from German guns. Both this company and the German company on the other side will discover a miracle and a temporary friendship made possible by Christmas. 

They spared no expense with this short. A full cast and sound effects. It was simply delightful. It sounded like a movie. 

This has sadness, but there is hope. War is hell, but sometimes Christmas can bring people together even if it is just for a day.

Honestly? I think I may re-listen to this near Xmas time in the future. It really does remind you of the simplicity of Christmas and the happiness and hope it can bring. 

Even if you do not like historical fiction, this is something you should check out. It has an excellent meaning and the cast was fantastic. 

5 stars. 

- Audiobook Challenge - #3