Thursday, May 2, 2019

Review: Debase by Rachel Van Dyken

With blood on my hands, I held her. 
With death in my soul, I took from her. 
With the devil in my heart, I coveted her.

There're many definitions of Hell. 
My list was exhaustive, my definitions tragic. 
Tonight I was adding something new to the very top. 
Girl number six thirty-two.

She arrived on my birthday, the same day, every year, I play Russian Roullete and pull the trigger.
She was my omen. 
My end game. 
She made it personal. 
And for the first time in my life, I gave in. 
A virgin mob boss with no soul.

My name is Andrei Petrov. 
They call me the devil.
All I want is for the pain to end. 
All she wants is for me to share it.

I am the last remaining heir to a dynasty that should burn in Hell. 
And my last wish remains for it to die with me. 

Review:  4.75 of 5 Stars

I have to confess, when I opened this book I wondered how I was going to feel about it.  I absolutely adore the Eagle Elite series and the characters.  It is by far the best mafia series out there. But the last couple of books, while great, did not hit me with as much emotion and impact as some of the earlier ones.  But then I opened Debase.  And damn, Andrei Petrov.

Andrei is probably the darkest character that Rachel has written about in the mafia.  Don't get me wrong, they are all ruthless and have their own issues, but they are still fun loving and funny.  I know it sounds weird but it works.  But Andrei was different.  He had some serious issues and I was heartbroken for him and the more I learned the more I wanted to help him.

Girl Six Thirty Two is one of the best female characters as well.  She has her own set of things she has gone through and being born in a family is a big part of it.  But I just love her strength and tenacity.  I loved watching the story of these two unfold.  Even though this book is intense, it is amazing and you won't be disappointed that you read it.  Well done, Rachel!

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Review: The Phoenix (Spy Girl #6), by Jillian Dodd


From USA Today bestselling author Jillian Dodd comes the next book in a sizzling series filled with action and adventure. Fans of The Selection and The Hunger Games will discover a heart-pounding thrill ride of espionage and suspense set in glittering high society.

A single sentence is muttered from the lips of an assassin dangling from a four-story building, “It starts in Montrovia.”
That sentence led Black X to send a spy to protect Prince Lorenzo.
And that sentence haunts Huntley as she realizes her time is running out. 

When athletes from around the world descend on Montrovia for the Olympics, another group is coming together, its years of planning a new world order finally coming to fruition. 
A disease is released.
People start dying. 
And, with rumors of an impending coup, the country falls into chaos. 

Alliances are betrayed. 
Lives are lost. 
Loves are challenged.
And hearts are turned.

Can Huntley stop what has started, or will Montrovia and the world fall?

4.5 out of 5 stars

I just LOVE everything about the Spy Girl series.  I love the main character Huntley, I love the mysterious plot line and every ounce of suspense that comes with constantly trying to figure out the the end game.  It's utterly addicting.  The Phoenix dives right into the continuation of Huntley's story and honestly it never slows down.  Major plot lines are revealed, character identities are answered and the mystery still continues.  It's like solving a puzzle and this book gives you almost all the pieces but in the end it's really just enough to keep you coming back for more.

Huntley's strength and passion continue to amaze me.  She has grown so much as a person, not only does she follow her instincts but she hardly every jumps to the wrong conclusion. She is very careful to examine things from all angles before making a decision, but what if even after doing all that she still doesn't see the end game?  What if she isn't able to save Montrovia? Part of me wonders if at the end of this mission the real lesson was learning one person alone cannot be responsible for Montrovia's safety but instead it comes from trusting the right people, depending on the people you love and working together?  It's just one theory running through my mind as to what we will find in book #7.   

Jillian Dodd throws us readers some serious curve balls with The Phoenix.  The rumors are all true - yes this book ends on a cliffhanger, yes characters die and yes you will be nervous about book #7 because I have real fears things are going to get even worse for Huntley before this mission is over.  This series is awesome, full of interesting characters you will find yourself wanting to live vicariously through and mystery in spades!  Thank you Jillian for this guilty pleasure, I for one love it!! 

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Review: Risky Play, by Rachel Van Dyken

What else can a virgin do when she’s ditched at the altar? Seattle heiress Mackenzie Dupont is treating herself to a single-girl honeymoon in Mexico and a desire to relinquish her innocence to a gorgeous one-night stand. Fake names. True pleasure. But when she wakes up alone, Mackenzie realizes just how much anger is left in her broken heart.

Suffering a tragic personal loss, pro soccer player Slade Rodriguez has his reasons for vanishing without a goodbye. Right or wrong, he’s blaming the beautiful and infuriating stranger he never wants to see again. They’re both in for a shock when Mackenzie shows up as his new personal assistant. And they both have a lot to learn about each other. Because they share more than they could possibly know, including a common enemy who’s playing his own games. And he’s not afraid to get dirty.

Now there’s only one way Mackenzie and Slade can win: to trust in each other and to stop hiding from the lies they’ve told, the secrets they’ve kept, the mistakes they’ve made, and the attraction that still burns between them.

4.5 out of 5 stars

I have to admit I loved this one!  It was a classic Rachel Van Dyken book.  The perfect amount of angst, humor, chemistry and drama all rolled into one HEA.  Rachel is one of my favorite go to authors, mainly because she seems to nail it every single time. 

Mackenzie is left at the alter on her wedding day - sure she's upset but not in the way you'd expect.  Fast forward several months and in the hopes of self re-discovery she's off on her honeymoon alone.  Here's where Slade Rodriguez comes into the picture and I have to say this meet cute was absolute perfection!

These two connect on a deeper level than either would expect, but to say it's a short lived romance would be putting it mildly.  Here's where the story gets juicy!  Yes, I could give you a play by play but I'm not because this story is one that deserves to be read and experiences first hand!

I loved watching Mackenzie work through her struggles and watching her grow.  From beginning to end it was a beautiful transformation of a character who's been incredibly lost become a strong independent women, who yes would love the support of the man she's in love with, but who finally not only knows what she wants but also has the courage to fight for herself.

Slade is broody, exhausted with the circus that's his life and so angry he honestly cannot stand himself.  But underneath all this is this amazing book boyfriend who's passionate and caring - and let's not forget his looks, basically he's the total package.

They are both lost in their own circumstances but together they make one heck of a couple.  Risky Play is going to be one of those RVD book's you're absolutely going to want to read again and again.  Such a fun escape - thanks Rachel - this is why we all love you so much!!!