Tag Archives: Romance

Review of “Unknown Horizons”

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Book Reviews – “Unknown Horizons” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by C. J. Birch. This is Birch’s first novel.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence, Mature Language and Mature Situations. The story is set in the future as humanity is about to launch its first colony ship to the stars. The primary character is Lieutenant Alison Ash.

Ash is newly assigned to the Persephone as the Executive Officer. While on their short journey to the colony ship Posterus, things begin to happen to Ash. The memory loss she experienced after the attack on Europa Science Station still bothers her and she is reluctant to let anyone know.

The Burrs (bio-technically enhanced throwbacks from the resource wars on Earth before humanity spread through the Solar System more than 100 years ago) want to stop the colony ship and are willing to do anything to prevent what they see as the abandonment of the human race. Complicating matters is the increasing attraction between Ash and the Peresephone’s Captain, Jordan Kellow. Ash is not well liked by the crew for many reasons, but she is driven by honor, duty and loyalty to those she loves.

I thought that this was a very interesting 4 hour read of this 240 page science fiction novel. I liked the character of Ash and the plot. Some may not like the LBGTQ romance aspect of the novel, but that was not an overwhelming thread in the overall story. The cover art is OK. I give this novel a 4.2 (rounded down to a 4) out of 5.

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

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Review of “Lost Girls”

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Book Review – “Lost Girls” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Merrie Destefano (http://www.merriedestefano.com). Ms. Stefano has published seven novels.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in the US. High School Junior Rachel wakes up in a ditch. She soon learns that she has been missing for two weeks. The worst part is that she can’t remember anything that has happened to her over the past year. The last thing she remembers is falling asleep in her room listening to music during her Sophomore year.

She discovers that over the past year, before the kidnapping, she had changed. She is astonished to find that she is romantically involved with a guy she would have been too timid to talk to before. She slowly investigates her own life, surprised at what she learns about herself. Slowly too, she begins to remember bits and pieces of the past year. She finds out that she is not the only lost girl, but she is the only one that has turned up alive.

The more she uncovers, she realizes that there has been a very dark side to her life over the past year. She also realizes that she has been involved with some very scary people. Will she remember how she was kidnapped and be able to save some of the other missing girls, or will her kidnappers find her again.

This was an interesting 6.5 hour read of a Young Adult Mystery. While there was romance, there was also a lot of dark, dangerous events in Rachel’s life. The plot certainly headed in unexpected directions as the story unfolds. The cover art is OK, but doesn’t really relate to the story being told. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

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

Review of “Battle for Glory”

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Book ReviewWWII – “Battle for Glory” eBook was published in 2016 and was written by Chad Ehler (http://ghqhomeforces.com). This seems to be Mr. Ehler’s first publication.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set mostly in England and some in France during the early days (1940) of World War II. The primary characters are RAF pilot Sherlock Owen Templeton and Luftwaffe pilot Herr Oberst Erich Mathieu Von List.

Templeton has seen action, but because of a terrible accident has been flying a desk for the past few months. He meets a mysterious American girl just as his orders change, putting him back into action.

The girl, Faith Hannah Fuller, is a pilot and part of a Churchill special project. She will be using her significant skills as an amphibious aircraft pilot to rescue downed airmen.

Von List is not only a pilot but also part of the SS. He comes across a tunnel from the French coast nearly to England built by the Romans for their planned invasion.

These three become intertwined. Von List encounters Fuller in the air, but is intrigued by her beauty and flying skills. Templeton flies reconnaissance missions and searches for the mysterious girl he met in London. Von List prepares for the German invasion of England through the tunnel he discovered. As he sneaks out at the newly made opening in England, he finds the beautiful girl he almost shot down to be stationed very near where the tunnel exit is hidden. Using his polished English, Von List mixes with the locals, gathering intelligence for the invasion and romancing Fuller.

Fuller becomes romantically entangled with both Von List, who she thinks is English, and Templeton. The secret invasion quickly approaches. Will Von List succeed with the invasion? Who will Fuller end up with? How will the growing rivalry between Von List and Templeton end?

I enjoyed the 7.5 hours I spent reading this 217 page World War II Thriller. I did like the premise of the plot as well as the characters. Some of it was kind of far fetched, but then that is often the case with thrillers. The way the novel ended there could easily be sequels. I hope that there are. The cover art is OK in that it is, in part, a story about flying, but the chosen picture does not relate closely to the plot. I give this novel a 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).

Trailer -“Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger”

Trailers – I don’t know much about this series yet, but since it is not scheduled to premier until 2018 we will all probably learn a lot more before it opens. This will be a 10-episode series on Freeform. The story is of two teenagers who discover that they have superpowers. The official synopsis is:

Cloak & Dagger is the story of Tandy Bowen (Olivia Holt) and Tyrone Johnson (Aubrey Joseph) – two teenagers from very different backgrounds, who find themselves burdened and awakened to newly acquired superpowers which are mysteriously linked to one another. Tandy can emit light daggers and Tyrone has the ability to engulf others in darkness. They quickly learn they are better together than apart, but their feelings for each other make their already complicated world even more challenging. 

Obviously there is a significant Young Adult Romance angle to this series. Will it be any good? I guess we will have to wait until next year to find out.

Review of “Typewriter in the sky”

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Book Review – “Typewriter in the Sky” eBook was published in 1995 (yep, that is the date on Amazon, but I think it was more like 2015. The original paper edition was published in 1951 and was written by L. Ron Hubbard (http://www.lronhubbard.org). Mr. Hubbard published 29 novels and numerous short stories.

I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. While the beginning and end are contemporary, most of the action takes place in the Caribbean of the 1640’s. The primary character is Michael de Wolf, a musician.

Through an unexplained quirk in time, he gets transported to the 1640s in the form of a Spanish Admiral sent to wipe away the French and English. This Admiral is one of the characters in his friends new Fiction novel. From time to time Wolf hears typewriter sounds from the sky (hence the title).

As it turns out he is the villain of the story, pitted against an Englishman who is trying to drive off the Spanish. And of course there is a beautiful, young English woman that has won the hearts of both men to give it a touch of Romance.

Wolf struggles to survive, surprised that he has the skills and knowledge to do so. He also suffers through rewrites where the past is ripped away and his history takes another path.

I thought that this was an interesting read of 2.5 hours. I’m not sure whether to classify this as Science Fiction or Fantasy. Surprisingly, the fact that the novel is more than 65 years old was not overly apparent. Wolf tries to move the story towards a happy conclusion for himself, but he is constantly challenged. The cover art is well chosen for the novel. I give this novel a 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).

Trailer for “Before I Fall”

Not sure if I should classify “Before I Fall” as a Science Fiction film or just Fiction. The movie is based upon the best selling Young Adult book by the same name. Much like “Groundhog Day”, the primary character of this story, Samantha Kingston (played by Maria Maggenti), finds herself in a time loop, living the same day over and over.

The brief overview of the plot says “February 12 is just another day in Sam’s charmed life until it turns out to be her last. Stuck reliving her last day over one inexplicable week, Sam untangles the mystery around her death and discovers everything she’s in danger of losing.” There is certainly a Romance angle to the story, but the time loop theme may offer some interesting story twists. We will all know when the film opens in March of 2017.

Review of “Shadows of the Stone Benders”

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Book Review – “Shadows of the Stone Benders” eBook was published in 2016 and was written by K. Patrick Donoghue (http://www.kpatrickdonoghue.com). This is Mr. Donoghue’s first novel.

I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in the US in contemporary times. The primary character is Anlon Cully, a Silicon Valley millionaire. When his archaeologist uncle Devlin Wilson dies from a suspicious fall, he heads east from California to handle the estate.

He, his friend Pebbles McCarver and local police detective Jennifer Stevens are drawn into a mystery. They soon discover that Wilson had discovered unusual artifacts that have power and which support his theories of a early Earth civilization.

They are not the only ones after the artifacts. They find themselves in one harrowing situation after another as they fight to retain control of the artifacts and discover who was behind Wilson’s death.

I enjoyed the near 9 hours I spent with this 316 page Fantasy (maybe it should be Science Fiction) Thriller. There is a Romance angle, though it was not concluded. It was not the best Thriller I had read, but it was a good first novel and I would would read sequels. The cover art was nice, but I am not sure what it has to do with the story. I give this novel a 3.5 (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).

Review of “The Fall of Fair Isle”

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Book Review – “The Fall of Fair Isle” eBook was published in 2015 (an omnibus edition with the three books “Broken Vows”, “Dark Dreams” and “Desperate Alliances” originally printed 1999 to 2002) was written by Rowena Cory Daniells (http://www.rowena-cory-daniells.com). Ms. Daniells has published a dozen novels.

I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Situations. The story is set in a mythical medieval world. There are three main characters in the series. The nation of Ghebite invades Fair Isle under the command of 30 year old General Tulkhan, and soon falls to their military might.

The young 17 year old T’En woman T’Imoshen becomes one of the last of the royal line as her family have all fallen in battle defending Fair Isle. She surrenders to Tulkhan rather than see more of her people killed. Prince Reothe, also with T’En heritage, slips away into hiding and fosters a rebel resistance to the Ghebites.

What evolves is a triangle between these three as they vie for power and love. Both men love T’Imoshen. She is also the key to the support of the Fair Isle people. T’Imoshen agrees to ‘bond’ (marry) Tulkhan for political reasons, but comes to love him. The young king of Ghebite, Tulkhan’s half brother, turns on him as he resents and fears his popularity. Tulkhan and T’Imoshen must unite to fight him.

The T’En are different from regular humans with red eyes, silver hair, six fingers on each hand and varying degrees of the ‘gift’. The ‘gift’ is the ability to sense and control other minds. Reothe has experience with the gift, but T’Imoshen has not had her abilities refined.

T’Imoshen, though betrothed to Reothe, breaks her promise to wed Tulkhan. She discovers that she loves both Tulkhan and Reothe, but is committed to her vows with Tulkhan. Reothe is constantly after T’Imoshen to run away with him and oppose the General. There is constant intrigue, political infighting and betrayal as the three vie for power. The love the three share is offset by distrust.

Though the Ghebite king is initially defeated, he comes back threatening Fair Isle with a new army. T’Imoshen, Tulkhan and Reothe must join forces to defeat the new invaders.

I thought I would never finish this book! I spent 32.5 hours reading the 1000 page eBook. I liked the story and the abilities that the T’En had. I wish I had first read the “Outcast Chronicles” trilogy which told the story of how the T’En got to Fair Isle, but this book read well on its own.

The story is a rich mix of personal desires, strong wills and distrust. I like that the T’En are both revered and feared. I think the book cover art was well chosen. While the Romance thread of this Fantasy novel was more than I usually like, I did thoroughly enjoy the book. I give this novel a 5 out of 5.

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

Review of “The Lying Planet”

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Book Review – “The Lying Planet” eBook was published in 2016 and was written by Carol Riggs (http://www.carolriggs.com). This is Ms. Riggs’ third novel.

I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as barely ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set at some time in the future after humanity has begun to colonize planets around other stars. The main character is 17 year old Jay Lawton.

Humanity is struggling to survive after a civil war tore their civilization apart. Now as teens reach their 18th birthday, they are evaluated and either sent on to Promise City for the chance at a better life, or they are banished into with wilderness. At least that is the story that Lawton and his friends have grown up with.

Lawton is in a serious relationship with girlfriend Aubrie. They both expect high scores when tested in the coming weeks. Then they will be able to begin a new life together in Promise City. Lawton though stumbles upon a discovery that completely turns his world upside down.

He finds that the colony is secretly being run by aliens and the lives of himself and all the other kids are at risk. Lawton must find a way to escape, then rescue Aubrie, his sisters, and all of the other kids. He also finds himself torn between feelings for Aubrie and growing feelings for Peyton.

This was an entertaining read of 7+ hours for the 285 page novel. The story moves along well enough, but the plot is a little thin to me even for a Romantic Young Adult Science Fiction novel. The cover art is colorful and sort of relates to the story. I give this novel a 3.4 (rounded down to a 3) out of 5.

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

Review of “Programmed to Please”

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Book Reviews – “Programmed to Please” eBook was published in 2013 and was written by Jenna Ives (http://www.jennaives.com). Ms. Ives has published five novels, with this being the first of her “The Tau Cetus Chronicles” series.

I received a galley of this novel for review through https://www.netgalley.com. I categorize this novel as a very definite ‘R’ because it contains Mature Language and Mature Situations. The story is set on the world of Tau Cetus in a future where robots have advanced to the point that they can almost pass for humans. The primary character is Tau Cetus police officer Jai Turner.

In an effort to gather evidence on well known arms dealer Marque Callex, Turner must go under cover. Only this assignment is more than she bargained for. She is to play the role of a Beautiful Dolls sex robot in order to get information on Callex. Callex is invited into the Beautiful Dolls offices for five one hour sessions to “try out” their newest and most realistic sex robot.

Turner is made over to look like the robot Callex has requested. Her skin is coated with a compound to give her the feel of a robot. She must carry out her role as a willing and skilled sex robot, letting Callex use her. While reluctant to portray a sex robot, Turner is determined to find evidence linking Callex with the death of another undercover officer, and discover who is trying to upset the peace on Tau Cetus. What she did not expect was to develop feelings for Callex.

This was an interesting, but short read of 3.5 hours for this 170 page novel. The Science Fiction was there, but the book was much more of an Erotic Romance. The story moved along well. There was a reasonable plot beyond the sex. The cover shows Turner in disguise as the sex robot, and was a good choice. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

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