Book Review: The First Pillar (Everville) by: Roy Huff


Publisher: 21st Century Lion Books

Publication Date: August 5, 2014

Origins:  From Author for Review

Synopsis: Owen Sage is the emblematic college freshman at Easton Falls University. He studies hard, plays hard, and is incredibly charming. With all the worries about his first year in college, he was not prepared for what would happen next. His way of life was flipped upside down when he was drawn into a different world, a world unbeknownst to him. He mysteriously crossed into another dimension, into the beautiful land of Everville. His tragic excitement was abruptly halted when he discovered that there was a darkness forged against both the natural world, which he knew well, and the new land which he discovered, Everville. He must devise a plan to save both worlds while joining forces with the race of Fron and The Keepers, whom both harbor hidden secrets he must learn in order to gain power over the evil that dwells in The Other In Between.

With a race against time to save both worlds, his short time at Easton Falls did not quite prepare him for the evil, dark forces he must fight in order to conquer The Other In Between. 

Review: THE FIRST PILLAR is the first book in the Everville series, featuring Owen Sage. THE FIRST PILLAR introduces us to another dimension, known as Everville, and the darkness which threatens both Everville and our world, known only as ‘Them’. Owen is determined to save Everville and will learn all he can in order to do so. While THE FIRST PILLAR had a very interesting premise and some of the ingredients to make for a wonderful story, I wasn’t able to connect with the characters or the plot. I think some revisions are needed to make the story flow better and infuse more life into THE FIRST PILLAR.

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Book Review: If You Only Knew by: Kristan Higgins


Publisher: HQN Books

Publication Date: August 25, 2015

Origins:  From Publicist for Review

Synopsis: Wedding-dress designer Jenny Tate understands the happily-ever-after business, yet somehow she's still involved in her ex-husband's life. In fact, Owen's new wife may—inexplicably—be Jenny's new best friend. Sensing this, well, relationship isn't helping her move on, Jenny trades the Manhattan skyline for her hometown up the Hudson, where she'll be able to bask in her sister Rachel's picture-perfect family life…and hopefully make one of her own. 

Her timing couldn't be more perfect, since Rachel will need her younger sister. Her idyllic marriage has just fallen to pieces in spectacular fashion after she discovers her husband sexting with one of his colleagues. Second chances aren't in Rachel's nature, but the desire for an intact family has her rethinking her stance on adultery, much to Jenny's surprise. Rachel points to their parents' "perfect" marriage as a shining example, but to protect her sister Jenny may have to tarnish that memory—and their relationship­—and reveal a secret about their family she's been keeping since childhood. 

During this summer of secrets and lies, temptation and revelation, Jenny and Rachel will rely on each other to find the humor in their personal catastrophes, the joy in their triumphs…and the strength to keep hanging on. 

Review: Told in alternating points of view, IF YOU ONLY KNEW is a touching and funny novel about family. Sisters Jenny and Rachel have very different lives: Jenny is a wedding-dress designer who is BFF’s with her ex-husband and his beautiful new wife while Rachel seems to have the perfect marriage and family. Making some tough decisions, Jenny decides to move back to her hometown, and open a new shop there while being closer to her sister and nieces. However, things aren’t perfect in Rachel’s world any longer as she discovers her husband is being unfaithful. IF YOU ONLY KNEW shows how two sisters can support each other in the face of adversity and help celebrate the joy in each other’s lives. I liked the fact there were true trials and tribulations in IF YOU ONLY KNEW and not everything ended up sunshine and roses for everyone. IF YOU ONLY KNEW will have you laughing and crying along with Jenny and Rachel.

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Book Review: Dark Avenging Angel by: Catherine Cavendish


Publisher: Samhain Publishing

Publication Date: August 4, 2015

Origins:  From Author for Review

Synopsis: Don’t hurt Jane. You may live to regret it.

Bullied by her abusive father, Jane always felt different. Then the lonely child found a friend in a mysterious dark lady who offers her protection—a lady she calls her “angel”. But that protection carries a terrible price, one to be paid with the souls of those Jane chooses to suffer a hideous and eternal fate.

When Jane refuses to name another victim, the angel reveals her most terrifying side. Payment must be made in full—one way or the other. 

Review: Jane is a good girl, who tries her very best, but nothing is ever good enough for her father. Her father is verbally and physically abusive, and Jane finds solace in a mysterious dark angel who offers Jane protection in return for three names of souls who deserve to suffer. DARK AVENGING ANGEL is a macabre story of revenge. I was quickly drawn into Jane’s story and felt for her suffering. I loved the “angel” and DARK AVENGING ANGEL shows you may not always be ready for the payment laid out in the fine print on the deals you make. DARK AVENGING ANGEL is a beautiful and haunting horror story.

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Book Review: The Third Throne: Angel of Darkness by: Tabitha Barret


Publisher: Tabitha Barret

Publication Date: February 14, 2015

Origins:  From Author for Review

Synopsis: Michelle Black lives an average life as she looks to her future beyond high school, but she is not an average girl. Plagued by nightmares of Hell and the unusual ability to see the sins of men, she stands apart from those around her. Deceived by a voice controlling her mind, she finds herself trapped in the place of her nightmares, Hell.

The ruler of Hell, the Angel of Darkness, tells her that she must now serve him, and she is forced to face the Realms of Torture. Strange things begin to happen as she senses that she is being deceived and is meant to be more than just a servant. The Angel of Darkness tries to gain her trust by professing his love for her, but she knows that he is keeping the truth from her. She will need to survive enemies hidden in the shadows who conspire to destroy her. Will she learn the truth about who she is and what she is destined to become before it’s too late? 

The Third Throne: Angel of Darkness is the first book in the series that introduces us to Michelle Black and her dark destiny. She must fight to survive in Hell as she searches for the terrifying truth about the darkness that resides deep inside of her.

Review: ANGEL OF DARKNESS is the first book in a new series, called The Third Throne. Michelle Black has lived with dreams of those suffering in Hell for years and can only confide in her best friend, CJ, about her dreams. When the voices become overwhelming, Michelle takes drastic action and ends up in Hell. The Angel of Darkness impresses upon Michelle she is his new servant, but things seem suspicious to Michelle and she starts to figure out she is more than just Lucifer’s servant. THE THIRD THRONE: ANGEL OF DARKNESS had a creative premise and the characters were well-developed, but left me with some mixed feelings. Some things about Michelle in the beginning struck me as contradictory, but as we learned more about Michelle it made a little more sense. This is definitely a book for NA and Adult readers due to the graphic sex scenes. THE THIRD THRONE: ANGEL OF DARKNESS an interesting start to this new series.

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Book Review: Architects of Destiny by: Amy DuBoff


Publisher: BDL Press

Publication Date: April 17, 2015

Origins:  From Author for Review

Synopsis: Cris Sietinen is heir to the most powerful Dynasty on Tararia, but he couldn’t care less about business and politics. He was born with rare telekinetic gifts—abilities he would never be permitted to develop within the confines of his family’s estate, thanks to the decrees of the powerful Priesthood. While the Tararian Selective Service (TSS) offers an official telekinesis training program, joining the organization is only a distant dream. Determined to explore his potential on his own, Cris leaves Tararia and begins a new life on a cargo freighter. But, everything changes when Cris receives an unexpected training opportunity with the TSS—a chance to find a home with people like himself, free from the Priesthood and political objectives. Except, some paths are designed, and Cris’ course was set. 

Architects of Destiny is the first installment in the Cadicle series. This short novel is a prelude to the defining events in Tararia’s history in the ensuing years. 

Is it possible to change destiny? The Cadicle series follows three generations of the pivotal Sietinen Dynasty as each learns their part in an elaborately orchestrated galactic conflict. Torn by politics, love and war, the Cadicle and those he holds most dear must choose between duty and morality as the true nature of their purpose unfolds. Through their roles as Agents in the Tararian Selective Service, they will be on the front lines of space battles, but the political skirmishes they must face on Tararia could prove just as dangerous. The Cadicle holds the key to winning both, but at what cost?

Review: ARCHITECTS OF DESTINY is the first book in the new Cadicle series. Cris Sietinen is the only heir of the number one dynasty on Tararia and he’d rather focus his own interests than learning about the family business and dealing with politics. Cris decides to make a break for it and become a cargo freighter. However, a confrontation with the Priesthood has brought him to the attention of the TSS, who offer him a chance to train his telekinetic gifts. While ARCHITECTS OF DESTINY is a shorter book, there is tons of world- and character-building stuffed inside. I greatly enjoyed ARCHITECTS OF DESTINY and I’m looking forward to see what the author has in store for Cris and his family.

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