Category Archives: Book Reviews

Christmas Gone Crazy by Jamie Adams – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing Christmas Gone Crazy by Jamie Adams.

Here’s the blurb

A weirdly sweet Christmas tale about two twenty-somethings who find themselves on a Christmas mission in the snow-capped mountains of Switzerland.

Review

I know it’s not Christmas but we all need a little Christmas cheer don’t we?

A reporter is tasked with heading to the Swiss Alps to look into reports of someone claiming to be Jesus.. while there things take a turn with a surprising ending that left me wondering what could happen next..

For me this short tale was about a miracle..anything can happen.. when you least expect it.. and leaves it up to the reader as to what they want to believe.. was this just coincidence or did the stranger claiming to be Jesus play a part? I’ll guess we will never know.

The tale is short at just over 20 pages and is a fun read that kept my interest. Perfect if you’ve not got a lot of time and fancy a quick read.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

4/5 Stars.

The Zolin Conspiracy (Malykant Mysteries #9) by Charlotte E. English – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing The Zolin Conspiracy (Malykant Mysteries #9) by Charlotte E. English.

Here’s the blurb

Konrad Savast is the Malykant: the most secret servant of the God of Death. His job? To track down the foulest of murderers and bring them to The Malykt’s Justice. No mercy. No quarter.

Out in the deep snow lies the body of a gentleman, dressed for a party — and missing his head. Konrad investigates, only to find a surprising dearth of information about the victim. Bogdan Zolin was a man with a glittering social record — and little else.

Just who was he? What secrets lie in his mysterious past? With the help of a wayward witch, a mild-mannered police inspector, and an undead street urchin, Konrad must delve deep into the hidden secrets of the aristocratic world. And hope to emerge alive.

Review

It’s been a while since I reviewed a book of Charlotte’s.. why you may ask.. she’s just so prolific I can’t keep up! Ha.

In all honesty I’ve been reading lots.. life got in the way of reviewing but it’s time to make up for that and get some reviews up J

So we are back with Konrad Savast.. he’s the Malykant and gives a voice to those who no longer have their own..Trust me.. you don’t want Konrad knocking on your door! He’s a hunter..with a talent for tracking down murderers.

This time Konrad finds the headless body of Bogdan Zolin.. but who is he? And why do people seem to know so little about the man? He’s a mysterious figure that’s for sure but Konrad is duty bound to bring the killer to justice.

While hunting the killer we continue to see the character development from Konrad that has been building over the series..he’s not the person he once was..can he still trust in his powers to be there when he needs them? And ultimately what will happen to him in the end? It’s not like you walk away from this type of job.

As usual theres twists and turns and hidden truths to be found. I don’t think I’ve read a more fun series that also happens to be pretty gruesome in its portrayal of death.. but the humour is perfectly balanced. His complicated relationship with Nanda will keep fans of the series hooked too!

I don’t want to spoil the plot but the details but the character of Bogdan was fascinating.. a task made difficult since he’s dead.. but he’s effortlessly brought to life and the major twists with him really gave him something.. made him more than just a footnote in the book.

I bang on about this a lot but Charlotte E. English has the perfect style of writing to hook you in, short sharp and ultimately easy flowing chapters means you can be forgiven for demolishing this book in a of couple hours.

What I really love about the series is the fact it never gets boring or repetitive.. yes there’s the underlying character development of Konrad.. but that’s something I want to see.. mix in a fun and fresh plot each time just makes this one of the best series to read. Dark and magical with the humour to match.

Another cracking read from the author who continues to give the readers just what they need.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

5/5 Stars.

Legionary: Dark Eagle (Legionary 8) by Gordon Doherty – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing Dark Eagle book in in the Legionary series by Gordon Doherty!

Here’s the blurb

Genre – Historical Fiction

Winter, 382 AD. The Gothic War is over. After years of bloodshed, the Eastern Roman Empire and the Goths have struck a deal for peace. Imperial heralds crow about the treaty as if it were a triumph. Feasts and celebrations take place across the Eastern provinces. Every hero of the war is honoured and acclaimed… except one.

Tribunus Pavo languishes in exile, haunted by a dark truth: that it was Gratian, Emperor of the West – the most powerful man alive – who caused the war and manipulated its every turn. Tormented by memories of loved ones lost during the great conflict, one word tolls endlessly through Pavo’s mind: Justice!

But in this great game of empire, justice rarely comes without a grave cost…

Review

We are back with Pavo and Sura.. or should I say Urbicus and Mucianus…after the events of the last book and Pavo’s brush with Emperor Gratian our lions are believed dead.. and they need to keep it that way.

While Pavo struggles to deal with being separated from his men of the Claudia they themselves are feeling his loss keenly.. and it’s about to get a hell of a lot worse.

The war with the Goths may be over but tension is bubbling and on top of that the tension between the Eastern and Western emperors that has been growing is about to boil over.

I’m used to Gordon’s work by now but he continues to amaze me with gripping plots and fascinating characters. As the title suggests this instalment is dark.. Probably Pavo’s darkest moment to date and once again not all our lions will live to tell the tale.

One chapter stands out for me as a bone crunching heart fluttering smack in the face.. Chapter 9.. it cemented just how far Gratian’s power can go and shows just how high the climb will be for Pavo to get to him.. it won’t be easy.

Along with way we get a wonderful new cheekiness from Darik..he bounces off Sura’s character brilliantly.. While Sura likes to think he’s the best at everything… to him Darik seems to have it all.. Including the looks.. there’s never animosity.. rather a budding friendship when you can tease but know when to draw the line… to see how they connected was refreshing to explore as I’m so used to it just being Pavo and Sura with a supporting cast.. Darik shines through.

Now to the nitty gritty without giving the game away.. yes there’s battle and Gordon did his usually with pure brilliance in describing the different units and how they are formed/where they are from.. for someone like me who likes the action this extra detail doesn’t distract at all but will really hit the mark for those who like authors going that little bit further. If anything it makes me want to learn more.. do my own research.. I’ve always known the Roman army encompassed many nationalities/groups but it’s amazing to see how far their reach was at one point.

With every chapter I smelt defeat on the cards… followed by hope..only to have it dashed again and again.. but wait.. hope arrives again.. Pavo is not the only one who want’s to see Gratian overthrown after all.. but as always all is not as it seems!

Damn you Gordon with all those marvellous twists!

Another little thing Gordon does that I really like is there’s always little titbits thrown in to remind the reader of those lost and fallen..the series may focus heavily on Pavo but he’s happy to share the limelight.

I felt Libo came into his own in this instalment too.. without Pavo he steps up and along with others like Pulcher show what the Claudia are all about.. they won’t go down without a fight.

I really don’t want to spoil anything but of course the Speculatores show their ugly faces again.. but Pavo is ready for them… if he can figure out who he can trust… one gets a rather gruesome death.. I can’t lie… I thoroughly enjoyed it!

I made one note when reading this book and it simply said… hard hitting gut hurting masterpiece.. and I stand by that.. 5*

Now enough.. go buy the book! 😊

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon!

The Innkeeper by MJ Porter as JE Porter – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing The Innkeeper by MJ Porter as JE Porter.

Here’s the blurb

Mann has a secret he can tell no one, and it’s not that the beguiling whores of Slutet believe he’s the best shag they’ve ever had.

No, being able to summon anything he wants, from thin air, is not something he wants to share. Neither is the fact that he has no recollection of his past, or that, as time goes on, his life never ends. (He doesn’t mind if the whores want to tell everyone about his prowess in the bedchamber, mind, and neither does he mind sharing it with all who come asking).

Not that his summoning power is his only secret, but the end of the millennia and a meeting of apparent strangers might be about to answer the questions he never even realised he had.

Whether a Nine or a None, Mann has a duty only he can fulfil, and this cycle, he’s failed, spectacularly. But there’s always tomorrow, or, rather, yesterday, to do it all over again, if he can only find what he lost.

As a Nine or a None, Mann must uncover his destiny by revisiting the past.

Review

The Innkeeper follows Mann.. he appears out of nowhere near Slutet.. why or how he doesn’t  know but he soon learns he has a special ability to summon the things he needs to survive.. but where do they come from and why does he have this power?

Full disclosure this book is like nothing I’ve read before.. it’s a magical fantasy/mystery tale but Mann is quite an enigma so the only thing you learn quickly is that he likes the word fuck a lot and he’s fond of his lady friends.

Mann soon settles in Slutet as an Innkeeper. As the years pass he sees those he knows live and die.. but he’s still here….and he’s not aged a day… at some point people will start to notice won’t they? Surely? He needs an exit plan.

This is a complex plan involving him leaving his home… at least for a while.

Just when he feels he has a way out others like him appear.. they are searching for someone.. is it him? If not who?

The major issue is he doesn’t know who he can trust…and even if they seem honest is this just an act?

As the tale progresses we see Mann learn to master his powers which made the chapters intriguing as he tried to put his plan into action.

The Nine and the None are a fun idea.. neither group seems to really know who is which or if they even like each other but the conversations between them were fun to read.

Looking at characters The Innkeeper has a vast array of weird and wonderful  individuals to get to know.. not many like to give much away though.. but it’s this lack of connection with them that actually makes them very appealing.

The plot itself is insane..crazy and bloody marvellous.. I can’t quite explain it.

For being so wonderfully strange and original it’s a 4* star from me.. The Nine and the None are so mysteriously baffling and I found myself really enjoying it.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

4/5 Stars.

The Bridge of Little Jeremy by Indrajit Gara – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing The Bridge of Little Jeremy by Indrajit Garai.

Here’s the blurb

Jeremy’s mother is about to go to prison for their debt to the State. He is trying everything within his means to save her, but his options are running out fast.

Then Jeremy discovers a treasure under Paris.

This discovery may save his mother, but it doesn’t come for free. And he has to ride over several obstacles for his plan to work.

Meanwhile, something else is limiting his time…

Review

The Bridge of Little Jeremy is a well written and moving tale of Jeremy and his dog Leon.

Jeremy lives with his mother but the family are struggling to survive.. at first Jeremy doesn’t know how bad things are but he’s an inquisitive little lad and soon learns the truth… To make things worse Jeremy isn’t in the best of health.

While selling his drawings to help make some money for the family Jeremy stumbles onto a family secret that goes back many many years.. he’s sucked into the past and how it can help the present.

The characters were well-developed for me.. each fit perfectly and I liked them all… the author didn’t give too much of the characters away, I think if they had they could have overshadowed Jeremy and this is his tale.I could connect with their emotions though and understood their actions and that really kept me engrossed in the tale.

The plot was an easy 4*… all the way till the ending that moved me so much it hits the 5*. At the end of the story I felt happy and sad.. confused emotions.. I needed time to reflect on what I felt was a powerful message delivered by the author… don’t take anything for granted.

5/5 Stars.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

Dragonfly by Trisha Hughes – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing Dragonfly by Trisha Hughes.

Here’s the blurb

Genre – Mystery/Thriller

Ex-police detective Jack Curtis thought he’d seen everything.That is until he found his friend Joe naked and sobbing on the steps of his house, a gun lying beside him and his fiancée Shannon dead in a pool of blood.All the evidence points to Joe as the murderer, yet he professes his innocence. But if Joe didn’t do it, who did?Jack digs deep for answers but what he finds reveals Shannon was playing a more sinister and dangerous game than he could ever have imagined. Now he is questioning everything he thought he knew.

Review

I was immediately interested in reading Dragonfly as it’s a change in genre for the author who was more familiar to me as a historical fiction writer.. Will a mystery/thriller live up to the same standards.. lets find out.

Jack Curtis an ex-police detective is about to have his night ruined when he receives a phone call from his friend Joe.. Joe’s fiancée is dead.

Things don’t add up from the start and Jack quickly decides he’s going to be involved one way or another.

A web of lies and deception is soon uncovered. The twist in this tale is just how far these deceptions go and how far will Jack go to uncover the truth… nothing is what it seems.

The author feeds you all the right words to make you feel you know the truth pretty early on..but wait a minute..that’s too easy right? There has to be more too it but what?.. oh trust me it’s worth the wait for the big reveal.

As a mystery/thriller goes this is really good, I must admit I didn’t really warm to Jack as quickly as I’d like.. There’s a lot of back story for the reader to follow and I needed time to learn his motivations but once I’d worked him out everything fell into place and I found myself connecting with Jack more and more.

If you are looking for intense build-up that drives you crazy this is the book for you..

I seriously hopes there’s more to come.

4/5 Stars.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

Faces of Darkness by Steven A. McKay

Next up on David’s Book Blurg I’m reviewing Faces of Darkness by Steven A. McKay.

Here’s the blurb

When a young noblewoman is brutally assaulted in her own manor house, two former outlaws decide they must solve the mystery, before things go too far…

CROFTUN, NORTHERN ENGLAND
WINTER, AD 1328

Lady Isabella de Courcy is found alone in a room bolted from the inside, unconscious, and with a dagger forced through her hand, but this is just the latest in a line of similar, terrifying incidents. For months now, she’s been stalked by some shadowy tormentor yet, bafflingly, the attacker has never been clearly seen by anyone, even Lady Isabella, and he seems to leave no trace of his movements.
Can the bailiff, John Little, along with the legendary friar, Robert Stafford, uncover the truth and, more importantly, will they be able to save the troubled victim before she ends up dead?

This new standalone novella from the author of The Druid sees the return of two much-loved characters from the Forest Lord series and is based on a shocking real-life case which remains, to this day, unsolved.Genre – Historical Fiction.

Review

Steven A. McKay has delivered a gem of a story! I really thought McKay had shelved for good Robin Hood and his gang for new pastures.. turns out there’s still some stories left to be told and I couldn’t be happier.

We are back with Friar Tuck and Little John who are about to stumble upon a mystery.. and let’s be fair we all know Tuck.. he’s not one to walk away without getting to the bottom of things.

Little John in his role as bailiff is out to collect a fine and Tuck comes along for the journey. They soon learn of the plight of Lady Isabella, who is being terrorised and things seem to be escalating! There’s one issue though.. there’s no witnesses and no evidence that the individual exists..but there must be someone right?

John and Tuck do due diligence and secure the area.. with no issues found they go on their way… only to be called back as another frightful event has occurred.

It soon becomes clear that not everyone believes the stories they are being told by Lady Isabella.. things don’t add up.

Tuck is a good judge of character and soon seems to be getting somewhere.. you can see the cogs start to turn once the oil gets the gears going and it leads to a fast paced and gripping ending that packs a punch.

What I really enjoyed about this book..  it’s a perfect little mystery but with the authors fun and gritty edge.. and Tuck and John were the perfect duo. You’d be forgiven for raising an eyebrow.. you either want modern-day mysteries or straight up historical fiction right?..can you mix them? McKay certainly knows the recipe!

I’m going to put it out there now… I love these little novellas.. Can we have Will Scaflock back in the next please :).

Faces of Darkness offers an intriguing plot based around a real life event, balanced with wit from both Tuck and John.. add in the perfect pace and you’ve got a winner!

McKay knows what his readers want.. everything he offers us is pure brilliance and while we may not see the gang around that much it was so good to be back!

5/5 Stars.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon