Tag: book reviews

Review – Ghost Files #3.5 by Apryl Baker

Tick tock…

Mary Cross has been forced to accept the world of the supernatural because of an experience that left her with the ability to hear—but not see—the supernatural. She survived three weeks of being kidnapped and tortured, and it has left her emotionally and physically scarred.

Across the street from her house, strange things are happening…

Mysterious noises haunt the residents, faucets turn on by themselves, and footsteps can be heard running up and down the stairs. It all centers around Noah, a two year old child. Babysitters have run screaming from the house.

Caleb Malone has been dumped into a teeming hornet’s nest…

He’s always been the good son, done everything asked of him, and even gave up graduate school to join the family business of hunting supernatural villains. He’s convinced himself he’s happy, that his duty to his gift should come before anything else.

Until he meets Mary Cross.

She gives him hope that things can be different, that he can be different.

Together, the two of them must solve the mystery of the two shadows stalking the child and save him from whatever has attached itself to him. Time is running out and to save Noah, forcing Mary to face her own demons.

But in doing so…has she put a target on her back?


Review

So far liking this series, this book runs alongside number 3, however this focuses on Mary and her new “talents” since she is no longer held captive, and hanging onto the edge of her existence.
What I appreciated in this book was that it didn’t repeat book 3, it mentions what is happening, but it does solely focus on Mary, it was one worry I had when going into this book.

Mary is a lot stronger and forthcoming than I thought she was, after all I had only read snippets in the previous book about her.
The story is relatively short, with the neighbours ghost being the main plot line, however I feel this is more about Mary discovering herself and coming to terms with this new paranormal world she lives in, after all having a new “sister” who not only talks to the dead but can see them is quite life changing.
The two focussed characters are Caleb and Mary, it gave the plot a little more to go on, especially with both characters coming from two very different backgrounds.

The humour and growth between all characters does not read like a bunch of teenagers, in fact the intelligence of them all is refreshing compared to some other books based on teenagers I have read about. I am really enjoying Apryl Bakers fiction.

3.5 is very fast paced and to the point, I managed to read it in an hour. I really enjoyed it, and look forward to the following books in the series, there is always some spooky goosebump moments, whilst still keeping the genre YA.


Previous books in the series:

Ghost files –
https://hannahsbeautifulfantasy.blog/2019/01/24/ghost-files-1-by-apryl-baker-book-review/
https://hannahsbeautifulfantasy.blog/2019/03/18/review-ghost-files-volume-2-by-apryl-baker/
https://hannahsbeautifulfantasy.blog/2019/04/15/review-the-ghost-files-3/

Find me
Instagram / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest/
Goodreads

End Of The Month Review Roundup – And I’m Married!

Hello all, I hope you all had a wonderful month. Mine has been a busy one for sure. On the 23rd I married Craig, say hello to Mr and Mrs Jones. This was our 10 year anniversary together exactly, it was a lovely day but went by so fast. Clayne enjoyed all the attention (If you want to see more wedding photos comment below).
My little boy Clayne turned 9 months old on the 26th, I cannot believe how fast he is growing up. I don’t think it will be long before he starts walking, and is currently walking along furniture babbling at the top of his lungs.
As you all read this today is the day I go back to work after 9 months off on maternity leave, I am apprehensive, but looking forward to working with my colleagues again and using these two days a week at work as some “me time”.

Lets get into the books, I have been trying to read one book a week but did slack in the last week, my apologies. But I am trying to get back into a routine.

Here are my 3 reviews from March, if I included my sons books I would have a huge list haha. I hope you all enjoy the first day of April, and please stay tuned for more coming to my blog.

Find me
Instagram / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest/
Goodreads

Review – The Side Job By Don Lubov

I was sent a copy of this book by the author for an honest review. However I was extremely disappointed. Keep reading for my review.

This is the story of Maggie Gomez — an unwed, unskilled mother of a sickly daughter. She lives a hardscrabble life on the underside of Las Vegas. As her daughter’s health deteriorates, Maggie’s need for money for an operation skyrockets. Maggie was vulnerable and defeated early in life. Her long-suppressed strength blossoms and Maggie becomes “La Femme Nikita”. As Maggie gets more involved with her loan shark boss and his crew, her world begins to spiral out of control. Her simultaneous involvement with a gangster and the detective investigating him turns her life into a soap opera of emotions. She must figure out how to escape her under- world life, protect her daughter, and live happily ever after.

Review

The prologue showed promise, I wanted to see how this young 16 year old Maggie who gets caught pregnant on her prom night succeeds in life. The story line would have been fantastic, however the lack of emotional descriptive writing made me lose connection with the characters. I wanted action and drama, that’s what I assumed would happen from what the author had told me. I couldn’t even get past 26%, I tried but this book was really poorly executed, however had the foundations to be an amazing book.
I had to get my friend to see some passages just to see if the feelings were mutual.

I didn’t feel a flow throughout, straight from the beginning it was rushed, blunt and read like bullet points. I honestly thought I was reading a draft version that was to be bulked out later.

I could feel myself cringing as the author tries to portray a young hip 20 year old Ben. Using sentences like “you dig?” were painful. I felt Don Lubov was trying to hard.

Looking online via Goodreads for some other perspectives, I noticed the same feedback as mine. Most readers felt disconnected to the characters, the writing was plain and very simple, making the book an extremely short read.
I gave this book 2/5 stars only because I know it could have been better, perhaps the writer needs to read back and deepen the novel further. There were some good foundations. I am sorry that I had to give it such a poor rating, this is extremely rare for me.

About the author:

Don has been happily married since 1976. He was an artist for 34 years and exhibited his artwork at 3 New York City Art Galleries and the Heckscher Art Museum. 

He spent 8 years teaching Art & Design at East Carolina University, McNeese State University, Suffolk county Community College. 

He was a guest lecturer at Stony Brook University on “Hyperspace—A Visual Introduction to the 4th Dimension”.

He received a grant from The Vogelstein Foundation for his work combining art & mathematics, with his “Quantum Pictures”.

He has written about spirituality and stress relief since 1971. He is the author of 9 books. 10 years successfully teaching his “Six-Step Path” at College of Central Florida Sr. Center, MTP College, and The Lifelong Learning College in The Villages, FL. He has taught his unique brand of meditation to over 2,000 people, who subsequently achieved a level of inner peace.

Don has written for Yahoo Voices, Beliefnet.com, and Kinja.com. His writings have been published in various magazines and books.

He has 3 YouTube videos: “The Grassroots Manifesto”, “Creativity Manifesto”, and “Spirituality Manifesto”.

He created and developed “Pyramoids” – an energy-efficient building system. He taught this system at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA.

One of his “Pyramoid” designs was accepted and juried in The World Trade Center Memorial Competition. 

He has taught his “Six-Step Path” for stress reduction for the past 12 years, at Del Webb and 3 local colleges.

Find me
Instagram / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest/
Goodreads

February Roundup Of My Book Reviews.

Hey all, this month I have been able to get back into my books. I got out of that reading funk that many of us are prone to falling into. I have quite a few books lined up ready to read and I am very excited to get my head stuck into them. I have found since having my son, my kindle fire has now become my best friend…. I am able to read in bed and not effect my husband to be. I will leave the link here to the kindle I have, but I love it.

Anyway, I have been able to review 2 books this month. And I will have another for you all on Monday for The Blood Prince.

The Executive Floor
The Haunting Of Hillwood Farm

Find me
Instagram / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest/
Goodreads

Ghost Files #1 – By Apryl Baker – Book Review.

Cherry blossom lipstick: check 
Smokey eyes: check 
Skinny jeans: check
Dead kid in the mirror: check 

For sixteen year old Mattie Hathaway, this is her normal everyday routine. She’s been able to see ghosts since her mother tried to murder her when she was five years old. No way does she want anyone to know she can talk to spooks. Being a foster kid is hard enough without being labeled a freak too. 

Normally, she just ignores the ghosts and they go away. That is until she see’s the ghost of her foster sister… Sally. 

Everyone thinks Sally’s just another runaway, but Mattie knows the truth—she’s dead. Murdered. Mattie feels like she has to help Sally, but she can’t do it alone. Against her better judgment, she teams up with a young policeman, Officer Dan, and together they set out to discover the real truth behind Sally’s disappearance. 

Only to find out she’s dealing with a much bigger problem, a serial killer, and she may be the next victim… 


Review

Genre – Paranormal, Horror, Mystery, Young adult.
Available in – paperback + kindle + Audible.
My copy – Kindle.

Length – 284 pages

First of I want to start by stating I should have read this book before Homecoming (I found Homecoming confusing). This book was the series prior to The crane diaries. And trust me everything is now clearer about Mattie.

The plot of this book kept me turning every page. Apryl Baker has made an amazing, creepy story. Even I was shivering a little bit with some of the gruesome details. For a young adult, paranormal book I was shocked and intrigued with the amount of spooky details and gore. Not one detail was missed.
The gradual build up to the end left me wanting more, each chapter added new gifts, new ghosts with an added adrenaline rush in the final few chapters.
It has been a long time since a paranormal book has excited me like this.

The characters were kept simple. Mattie and Dan are the main characters portrayed in this book.
The Ghost Files follows Mattie’s life coming to terms with the fact her mother tried to kill her and then committed suicide, now she can see ghosts.
However after spending years in the foster system, as well as trying to avoid ghosts Sally disappears and Ghost boy arrives, sending Mattie into a string of hospital visits, which she can’t explain to her foster mother….. But she can with Dan.

Raising the knife once more, she pushed it deep into her own throat before pulling it out. She collapsed beside me, her face inches from mine. I had to lie there and watch her die.

The back and forth banter with Dan and Mattie was the best. Dan was like an over protective older brother at first with the need to protect Mattie even outside of work. Mattie decides to confide in Dan when it comes to her gift but cannot understand why – what has this random guy in her life got that her boyfriend doesn’t, and why is she slipping up with her words around him.
All these new ghosts, and with the help of Dan and a new doctor Mattie begins to understand her gift, and begins to trust in the spirits knowledge.

I never felt I was reading from the point of view of a teenager, Mattie comes across as a grown woman, troubled past but now stronger than ever and ready to kick ass.
There was nothing I disliked about this book, and I have already added the rest of the series to my TBR.

Find me
Instagram / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest/
Goodreads

Troubled Spirits – Book Review

Cover

Synopsis

Jody has been a conduit for ghosts her entire life. Not only do they come to her for help, but at times she experiences what they feel when they die. This gift or curse comes at a high personal cost—especially when a child is involved. There’s not a man alive who is willing to compete with troubled spirits.

Jared, a wealthy and determined high-powered P.I., has lived without love his entire life. In business if he wants something, he goes after it with a vengeance and is usually not denied. His life experiences have taught him that believing and trusting in others is a dead end street.

But on one magical night Jared meets Jody, and they soon find themselves on the brink of falling in love. But will the spirits surrounding Jody relinquish their hold on her in order for Jared to stake his claim or will their love disappear in an ethereal puff of smoke?

Insta

Review

I received an ARC copy in return for an honest review.

My overall thoughts of this book throw me back to the days of watching Ghost whisperer with Jennifer love-Hewitt.
Jody’s gift of seeing spirits with one last message comes across as a gift, however it is beginning to feel more like a curse, this story explores how a small 4 year old persistent spirit girl, called Fiona tests Jody to her limits.

For the first time in a while it was nice to see a female character have two close male friends who have stuck by her and wanted nothing more than friendship, I find this rare in most books.
Another refreshing part was reading how Jody and Jared built their relationship on trust  before they became involved.  Jody came across as a loner where as Jared came across as a possessive sceptic before he fell for Jody’s non profited gift.

I found the beginning of the book very descriptive, looking at the story from different character view points.  Even though this helped build up a profile on each character I do feel this brought  the book down, only because it made the beginning of the book so slow.  It took me until 40% of the way through before I felt I was getting somewhere, and Jared had not even shown up yet.

Overall I did enjoy this book, the beginning was slow but once I got halfway through I was stuck.  I couldn’t put the book down.  I wish there was a second to see how Jody gets on with her new life and gifts.  I can’t say too much because it would ruin the end.  Definitely give it a read.

quote

Check out my new Instagram HannahsBeautifulFantasy for all book promo’s, beauty and life related posts.  Started to work on a new blog look and Instagram look.  Hope you all enjoy.

If you enjoyed please like, comment and follow and help me reach 500 followers I am so close.

The Ghost Downstairs – Book Review.

After making a fatal mistake on the job, Lina Zuendel seeks shelter in a Seattle assisted-living facility as their live-in nurse. But peace is not what she finds. She soon hears tales of ghosts haunting the house, and of two tragic deaths that took place in the 1930s. Unexplained events send her to ask questions of the handsome resident houseboy.

Ren Schultz, a seemingly young live-in houseboy, tries to avoid his growing attraction to the new nurse. His secrets are too dangerous to share, no matter how lonely he has become. But Lina is persistent, and soon uncovers dark truths that no one else has dared to face.

As their attraction grows, so does the intensity of the paranormal activity. Can their love survive the mysteries that lurk in the old sorority house?

the ghost downstairs


Review – ARC copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Lina is a nurse who made a mistake on the job, one she regrets even though the family of the deceased patient are not pressing charges, and the hospital wish to keep her.  She decides to leave the hospital environment and embark on a new journey working in a Residential home in an old styled home which has it’s own back story.  Quiet, peaceful and a fresh start.
She leaves her old friends/room mates behind, as well as trying to get over the fact that her ex boyfriend is now suddenly in a committed relationship literally 3 months after breaking up.

Lina meets Ren, a houseboy who has been working at the home for years, never seems to leave and keeps himself to himself.  Even after warnings of not getting to close by the manager Marla, Lina is still smitten and proceeds to get to know Ren, not before long they develop a close friendship.
Ren and Lina both have issues in their life, however Ren has a little bit more hidden beneath the surface.  That is until Lina decides to take one of Ren’s diaries,  and discovers a whole new truth to why he is on “house arrest”.

The book is a very lighthearted romance book, main focus is on Lina and Ren but there are the odd appearances from Mrs B, Marla, and an unwanted ghost that everyone is suspicious about, whether you believe in them or not.  Lots go bump in the night.

I liked the twist and turns of this story, I was constantly engaged between the romance brewing between Ren and Lina.  I liked that the secondary characters were enough to push Lina and keep the story flowing, I enjoyed the banter between the residents, it kept the story light hearted even when there was some dark parts.
The story line never dragged, a little mystery, romance, drama, supernatural and a few spooks along the way.  But not a horror story.
I never would have guessed the ending though, that was a surprise, and well written by the author.

I have fallen in love with these two characters, I felt so sorry for Lina.  Being a nurse myself I can only imagine how bad it feels to make a mistake on the job and the guilt way you down.
Ren – he was sweet throughout, mysterious, caring and an honest man.  Well honest when he could be without there being a threat of Lina leaving, if she knew the whole truth.

I am now hooked on the Author Molly Ringle and her art of story telling.  To keep me intrigued like this is rare and only a few authors have managed to keep my attention throughout, I definitely recommend this book to you all.


Amazon.jpg

Available

Amazon UK paperback UK

Kindle edition UK

Audiobook  UK

You can check out the reviews on amazon via the links above, other reviews can be found on Goodreads – link below to my reviews

 The Ghost DownstairsThe Ghost Downstairs by Molly Ringle

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

View all my reviews