Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Closed Off To You: Sexy. Naughty. Dirty.

After binge-reading on crime fiction for the past several weeks, I needed a change because I’m starting to look at my work mates as serial killers plotting their next kill.

So, this particular book is free on Amazon. It’s written by the same author whose YA books I have read in the past. Only this time, she uses a pen name.

Closed Off To You by Rachel S. Rose is categorised as Women’s Fiction and Inspirational. So, yeah, I could use some inspirational reading to take my mind off the blood and gore of crime fiction. So I dive in.

The first chapter has a Chick Lit vibe to it and it’s hilarious! It had me in stitches the entire chapter. Melissa is such an endearing character from the get go. She’s funny, self-deprecating, and exciting in a blundering kind of way.


Then the story takes a sexy turn.

The funny bits turn to naughty to very naughty to full on dirty.

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

My jaw dropped to the filthy floor.

I’m not complaining (ha!). I just didn’t plan on reading an erotic story while on board the commuter train early in the morning.

Took my mind off crime fiction all right.

But if you take away those steamy scenes, you’ll find a legitimate storyline with funny characters and snappy dialogues. And singing. And dancing. And more sex.  3.5/5

*Folks, this is the danger of not reading the blurb in its entirety. You could miss some important advisory about the nature of the content. 

Saturday, 22 October 2016

The Night Stalker: A Wicked Page-Turner

The second book in the series usually re-introduces characters only briefly so there’s always a chance of not understanding certain aspects of the character dynamics. With that said, The Night Stalker by Robert Bryndza brilliantly presented the characters in such a way that I didn’t feel like I’ve missed out on important background details.

On to the review…
A serial killer is on the loose and it’s up to DCI Erika Foster to find the violent, heartless, totally deranged person who’s killing male victims. The killer operates by stalking the victims first with ninja-like precision then killing them mercilessly.

The weapon of choice: Suicide bag.

The victims never see the killer coming.

I like that the killer is revealed a bit earlier than usual. Some would say it’s easy to guess who the killer is. But one has to realize that it’s the thrill of the chase that makes this book a wicked page-turner.

Erika and her team have to outsmart the seemingly untraceable serial killer. The difficulty is palpable and it resonates to the reader, hence, there’s a sense of involvement in the case.

It’s not just about chasing a killer. It’s also presenting characters with raw emotions and unprocessed emotional baggage. There’s always a struggle to come to terms with some hard realities.

But it’s not always dark and grim. There are some funny bits that balance things out.

This is an intelligent crime thriller with unforgettable characters. They just get in your head and linger.  ★★★ 5/5

*Review copy provided by publisher Bookouture through NetGalley.

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Play Dead: Dangerously Disturbing

Kim Stone. Middle name: Badass.

She’s the fierce detective with a no-nonsense approach to solving crimes. She comes across as cold and calculating and emotionally closed-off, but reveals bits and pieces about herself and her real state of mind. This makes her a fascinating character full of contradiction and ambiguity. 

Then, of course, there’s her team – a cast of characters with quirky personalities but work together with clockwork efficiency. A love interest that may or may not have a future cuts through the grittiness and gruesomeness of the crimes committed by a dangerously unstable serial killer.

Play Dead by Angela Marsons is a tightly written story with impressive forensic details that make you feel you’re really in the middle of a crime scene investigation and actually understand what’s going on. The dialogues and the banters are as natural as they come.  It’s an exciting read that gets the blood pumping.

It’s a shame that it took four books before I was introduced to Inspector Kim Stone and her team. I was late to the party, but I sure am staying up late to binge read the heck out of this series! ★★★ 5/5

*Review copy provided by publisher Bookouture through NetGalley.