Category Archives: eBook

Book Review – The Skylark’s Sacrifice

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – J. M. Frey https://jmfrey.net(AKA Peggy Barnett) is the author of more than a dozen books. The Skylark’s Sacrifice was published in 2019 and is the second book in her Skylark Saga series. This is the 4th book I completed in 2023.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence and mature situations, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is 17-year-old Robin Arianhod.

Arianhod has escaped from the Coyote with the rocket pack and is on the run. She uses it to strike out against Klonn’s war efforts. She is surprised when the Coyote tracks her down. She is surprised and thrilled when he joins her anti-war efforts.

Soon it is not only the city guards that are after her. The Coyote is wounded in a struggle with the Night Watch. Arianhod struggles to get him and herself to the safety of Madam Rose. Rose is one of the leaders of the Klonn rebels. They seem to want the war to end as much as Arianhod does.

As the Coyote recovers and begins to assist Arianhod with her strikes against the Klonn war machine, they grow closer. Soon the two are married. Arianhod concludes that their efforts are having little effect on the war. There is only one option to bring the war to an end. The King of Klonn must die.

Arianhod and her allies devise a daring plan. For it to work, she must rely on Madam Rosa and the Coyote. But can she really trust them? A substantial reward is being offered for her capture. Her husband is an aristocrat. Will he be able to turn his back on the throne and support her plan to assassinate the King?

I enjoyed the 9 hours I spent reading this 356-page young adult, steampunk novel. I had the opportunity to read the first novel in the series, The Skylark’s Song in 2022. Both novels have been enjoyable reads. Before reading this novel, it would be best to have read The Skylark’s Song. The plot is a little slow, but there is an exciting ending with a twist. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Blunt Force

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Lynda La Plante https://lyndalaplante.com is the author of nearly 50 novels. Blunt Force was published in 2020 and is the sixth novel in her Tennison series. It is the 3rd book I completed in 2023.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence and mature language, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is 30-year-old Detective Sargent Jane Tennison.

Having been removed from the high-profile Flying Squad, Tennison is now assigned to the Gerald Road station in Knightsbridge. With the discoveray of a body, the tranquility of the affluent neighborhood is disrupted. The man isn’t simply dead but has been severely beaten, dismembered, and disemboweled.

The man turns out to be talent agent Charlie Foxley. Tennison finds no shortage of suspects. Foxley had earned himself many enemies. Most evidence points towards Foxley’s ex-wife, but not enough for an arrest.

As the investigation moves forward, Tennison finds evidence of drugs, prostitution, and underage girls manipulated into having sex. Her excursion into the world of show business is far from glamorous.

I enjoyed the 11.5 hours I spent reading this 434-page mystery. While the book is part of a series, it can easily be read standalone. The plot was a little slow, and the novel seemed to end abruptly. I do like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 3.8 (rounded to 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Debt of Loyalty

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Christopher G. Nuttall is the author of more than 100 novels. Debt of Loyalty was published in 2020 and is the second book in his Ember of War series. This is the 2nd book I completed in 2023.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to some violence and mature language, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is Admiral Lady Katherine Falcone.

The Commonwealth has been engulfed in a civil war. Falcone had to make a hard decision as civil war became inevitable. Should she stay loyal to the King and the colony worlds or remain with the Tyre Navy and her family. She has sided with King Hadrian and has enabled his escape from Tyre.

The planet Caledonia has become the rebel stronghold and has allied with a handful of colony worlds against the Commonwealth parliament.

Falcone had to make a hard decision as civil war became inevitable. Should she stay loyal to the King and the colony worlds, or remain with the Tyre Navy and her family.

Falcone is given command of the King’s fleet and engages the Tyre forces. They skirmish, but the big battle will be in Tyre space. The plan is risky, but if the war is not taken to Tyre, Caledonia will fall under attack. Falcone wants to win the engagement and bring the civil war to an end. She may have to settle for striking a hard blow and withdrawing in defeat.

I enjoyed the 10.5+ hours I spent reading this 401-page science fiction novel. With this book, I have read six excellent books by Mr. Nuttall. The others are The Oncoming StormFalcone StrikeCursed CommandThe Hyperspace Trap, and Debt of Honor. While this novel can be read stand-alone, the novels listed above, except for The Hyperspace Trap should be read first. I enjoy ‘space opera’ stories, and Debt of Loyalty is one of the best. The plot is laced with action, politics, and intrigue. I like the cover art chosen for this novel. I give this novel a rating of 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Sex Under the Swastika

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Tim Heath is the author of eight books. Sex Under the Swastika: Erotica, Scandal and the Occult in Hitler’s Third Reich will be released on 16 February. This is the 1st book I completed in 2023.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to mature language and mature situations, I categorize this book as R.

The book begins by looking at the decadence during the days of the Weimar Republic. There were many nightclubs, particularly in Berlin. Around them swirled an atmosphere of drugs, alcohol, and sex. With the age of consent for women at just 16, many girls indulged in all three.

When the Nazis ascended to power in 1934, they tried to curtail the excesses. Many clubs were closed. Those who did not follow the Nazi family ideal were arrested as deviants, many being sent to the camps. The Nazis envisioned their youth to follow a healthy, athletic, family-oriented, and moral lifestyle.

Careers for women were frowned upon. Girls should marry early, often at 16 or 17. It was a moral duty for them to bear as many children as possible for the Third Reich. The government created the Cross of Honour of the German Mother to encourage this. A woman birthing four children earned the bronze medal, 6+ the silver, and the gold for eight or more.

The outdoors and exercise were integral parts of the Nazi-imposed BDM. Beginning with its creation in 1938 all girls aged 14 to 18 were required to be members. Nakedness was embraced as a form of naturism, nothing to be ashamed of, and perfectly natural. It was not uncommon for them to walk around the countryside or swim in the rivers and lakes naked.

Although a moral standard was held up as an example, many youngsters of both genders suffered sexual abuse. The threat of being called out as a Jew and sent to a camp enabled many predators to take advantage of young women. The list of abuses is long. In conquered areas military brothels known as ‘Joy Divisions’ were often established.

The Lebensborn program began in 1935. Aryan girls as young as 15 were encouraged to have sex with selected Aryan males. The plan was to increase the birth rate of Aryan children for the Reich. German girls were coached on the best sexual position to use to increase their chances of pregnancy.

I enjoyed the 10.5 hours I spent reading this 276-page WWII-era history. Much of the source material comes from interviews, letters, and journals. This is the third book by Tim Heath that I have read. The other two were Hitler’s Housewives: German Women on the Home Front and Resistance Heroines in Nazi- and Russian-Occupied Austria. They have all been enjoyable books on the history of WWII. While I knew some of the material discussed in the book, there was much that was new to me. The book includes several photos relevant to the story from the war period. I like the chosen cover art. I give this book a rating of 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest.

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 600 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – The Island

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Natasha Preston https://www.natashapreston.com is the author of 20 novels. The Island will be released 28 February 2023. This is the 104th book I completed in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this book/novel as R. The primary character is 17-year-old Paisley.

Paisley isn’t the typical teenage girl. Her passion is her blog which focuses on stories of true crime. The blog has made her one of the top teen social media influencers. That is what earns her the invitation to Jagged Island.

Jagged Island is a private amusement park for the very rich. It is set to open soon, and the owner wants Paisley, and a handful of other influencers, to hype the park. The six selected teens will enjoy an exclusive weekend at the park. They will be treated as VIPs and are expected to post about their experience.

Liam, James, Will, Ava, Harper, and Paisley find the park even better than they had expected. The gothic theme of the park is particularly appealing to Paisley. Their VIP experience is hosted by the park owner Malcolm Wyatt and four employees. What could go wrong with only a dozen people on a gothic-themed island?

A storm sweeps in to disable communication with the mainland. People begin to die. The thrilling amusement park weekend turns into a brutal struggle for survival.

I enjoyed the 6.5 hours I spent reading this 336-page young adult thriller. Much of the novel is written in the first person from Paisley’s point of view. The dark cover art is a perfect fit for this novel. I give this novel a rating of 3.8 (rounded to 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

A Book to add to your WWII History Shelf – The Battle of El Alamein

I subscribe to several different ebook sales notification services. One of those is MyNextRead.

In the email I received from them today and they noted that the 156 page ebook edition of The Battle of El Alamein: Fortress in the Sand by Fred Majdalany is currently available from Amazon for FREE. The book was published in 2013. I have downloaded the book, but not read it yet.

If you are a student of WWII history you should act now to add this book to your bookshelf. These sales often last only a few days, so better to act soon.


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest.

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 600 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – Ungentlemanly Warfare

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Howard Linskey http://www.howardlinskey.co.uk/ is the author of more than a dozen novels. Ungentlemanly Warfare was published in 2020. This was the 103rd book I completed in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence and mature situations, I categorize this novel as R.

It is 1943, and the war is definitely taking a turn against the Nazis. One of their Wunderwaffe or ‘wonder weapons’ is the rocket-propelled Messerschmitt Me 163 Komet interceptor. It is nearly ready for production, but stability issues still plague it.

German scientist Professor Gaerte has been assigned to quickly correct the flaw. If the plane is made functional and put into production, the impact on Allied bombers will be dire. This could even endanger the Normandy invasion. Fortunately, British Intelligence has discovered Gaerte’s mission.

An SOE Jedburg team is sent into France to assassinate Gaerte and put Me 163 completion behind schedule. The British put one of their best men on the team, Captain Harry Walsh. He can be ruthless and unorthodox at times, but he completes his missions.

Once in France, the team meets with another SOE agent, Emma Stirling. She is experienced, having worked in France before. Her presence complicates things as she was once Walsh’s lover. Plans go awry when the Maquis group they are working with is raided by the Germans after being betrayed.

Will they be able to evade the Germans? Can their mission still be completed?

I enjoyed the 8+ hours I spent reading this 228-page WWII-era thriller. The plot takes a few turns and is full of action and intrigue. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest.

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 600 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – Angel in Red

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Christopher Nicole is the author of more than 200 books & novels. Angel in Red was published in 2018 and is the second volume of his Anna Fehrbach series. This was the 102nd book I completed in 2022.

I downloaded this book while it was being promoted by Lume Books. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence and mature situations, I categorize this novel as R.

Twenty-year-old Anna Fehrbach is the primary character. She despises the Nazis, but since her parents and sister are being held as hostages, she has no choice but to continue acting the part of a dedicated SD agent. Fehrbach continues to wield her skills as an assassin when ordered by the SD. Nor does she hesitate to employ them to protect herself as a double agent for the British.

It is May of 1940, and the Phoney War has ended. After she is exposed as a Nazi agent, Fehrbach flees England for Berlin. The SD still believes in her as an agent. In particular, she has the trust of Reinhard Heydrich. Not only does he believe she is still an enthusiastic Nazi agent, but he has also taken her as his mistress on occasion.

With the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, Germany and Russia are still at peace with one another. Fehrbach is sent to Moscow, where she is to use her feminine skills to become the mistress of Ewfim Chalyapov. Chalyapov is chosen as her target as he is close to Marshal Stalin. Her ultimate mission is to kill Stalin at the outset of Operation Barbarossa to disrupt the Russian military.

Fehrbach easily succeeds in her mission and soon becomes a friend of Stalin. She frequently is invited to a private afternoon tea with him. The opportunity will be there. But if she goes through with the assassination her life will be over. If she doesn’t, she will be on the hit list of the SD and Heydrich.

I enjoyed the 6.5+ hours I spent reading this 267-page WWII-era thriller. I had the opportunity to read the first book in the series, Angel From Hell, earlier in the year. This book is every bit as good as the first! The novel is full of action, sex, and intrigue. The Fehrbach character is very much a WWII-era James Bond. I look forward to reading the remaining six novels in the series. I like the cover art chosen for the novel. I give this novel a rating of 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 600 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – The Skylark’s Song

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – J. M. Frey https://jmfrey.net(AKA Peggy Barnett) is the author of more than a dozen books. The Skylark’s Songwas published in 2018 and is the first volume of her Skylark Saga series. This was the 101st book I completed in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this book/novel as R. The primary character is 17-year-old Robin Arianhod.

Sergeant Arianhod has grown up with the war raging between Saskwya and Klonn. As per the custom, she had begun her apprenticeship when she was only 11. She had finally earned her way to crew a glider. She was the flight mechanic responsible for aircraft maintenance. In combat, she rides behind the pilot and drops bombs when commanded. She also defends their ship with her gun.

That all changes the day that her pilot is confronted by the Coyote. The Coyote is a ruthless Klonn pilot that has brought many Saskwya down. After her pilot is wounded, Arianhod must take over. Amazingly she holds her own against the Coyote and lands their plane.

For that feat of courage, Arianhod is promoted to pilot, a mighty achievement for one of her class. Her exploits in the air against the Klonn grow, and she takes on the nickname of the Skylark. Eventually, she once again faces the Coyote. As good as she has become, her luck runs out, and she is shot down.

While Arianhod survives the resulting crash, her close friend and flight engineer Al does not. The Coyote makes her his captive. Instead of the treatment she feared, he treats her like an aristocrat. Their relationship develops, but as much as she is attracted to him, he is still the enemy.

When a strange, one-of-a-kind rocket pack falls into the Coyote’s possession, Arianhod decides she must escape. She has been repairing it, and now it is ready. If the Klonn can utilize the rocket pack, the war will swing in their favor.

Arianhod sees the rocket pack as her means of escape. She hopes she can then use it to bring the decade-long war to an end. But to do so, she must slip away. Once she has escaped, she will have to survive miles behind enemy lines. The odds are against her, but she always has been lucky.

I enjoyed the 9 hours I spent reading this 288-page young adult, steampunk novel. This novel mixes intrigue, romance, and courage in a teenage girl’s life. The plot is infused with steampunk tech to give it an interesting twist. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 3.8 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review – Black sheep

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Rachel Aukes https://www.rachelaukes.com/ is the author of more than 40 books. _Black Sheep: A Space Opera Adventure _ was published in 2020 and is the first in her Flight of the Javelin series. This was the 100th book I completed in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own! Due to scenes of violence, I categorize this novel as R. The primary character is spacecraft Captain Halit ‘Throttle’ Reyne.

Reyene and her crew are 15 years into a 20-year voyage when her colony ship, the Gabriela, has a breakdown. The catastrophic failure means Renene and her crew must abandon the Colony ship and the thousand colonists in cryo-sleep aboard. The only chance for the colonists is for the crew to find help.

They are surprised when they stumble across a derelict ship. It will be the find of a lifetime if Reyene and her crew can get it to civilized space. They find the ship intact and fully operational once they have boarded it. The onboard AI, who they name Rusty, has no memory of the ship’s origin or mission.

Reyene thinks their problem has been solved with the discovery of the ship. They head back to the Colony ship. When they arrive, they find that the Gabriela has been taken by pirates. They are forced to follow the pirates to the Jade-8 Terra orbital colony.

The Gabriela is docked at the station, but it is hardly the safe haven Reyene was looking for. The space station is run by pirates and gangsters. The inhabitants are virtual slaves to the two siblings that are in power.

Reyene and her crew’s freedom is in question and the future of the colonists looks dire. Can they escape Jade-8? Will they have to abandon the colonists?

I enjoyed the 6.5+ hours I spent reading this 262-page science fiction novel. I do like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).