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Didi Oviatt

Author of suspense novels Search For Maylee, Aggravated Momentum, The Stix, and New Age Lamians. As well as the short story collection Time Wasters and (co-author of) The Suspenseful Collection. Columnist for The Conscious Talk Magazine.

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bookreview

Review: Deity’s Soulmate, by Angelina Kerner 4 of 5 stars

My Review:

4 of 5 stars.

Deity’s Soulmate has the most uniquely modern twist on mythological aspects I’ve ever read. It’s different, and I love different. Gardenia is the daughter of Athena and Zeus. She has a bit of a temper, and often makes rash decisions. She lets her family and the fates press her buttons, and she’s known to act on emotions rather than thinking things through.

Her stubborn bull-headedness isn’t all bad though. After breaking the rules, checking out human kind in war without permission, and listening to some negative comments of belittlement from her family and one of the fates, Gardenia makes a split decision to create a Galaxy of her own. Such a task usually requires years of extensive training. It’s extremely taxing on the body and soul, and the complexities of creating life is far to overwhelming for a teenage goddess to understand.

Luckily Gardenia survives the first step. But, for punishment Zeus places her creation in a limbo state and requires her to train for quite an extensive period of time. Everyone is expecting her to fail. After her choice to seek out the help of dragons as her trainers rather than the obvious choice of her family, they all seem to stand against her even more. Gardenia uses the lack of faith in herself by her family to feed her determination. She seeks out the help of dragons to train her for the task at hand. What she finds in her journey is far from what she expected.

I really enjoyed the style of this story and am excited to read the next books in the series!  I enjoyed the fates. They’re deceptive and weave a path of destruction. It’s kind of like they are irritating in a perfect way. I love the approach Angelina took with Dragons! I felt like Gardenia was a bit juvenile. A part of me felt like that was necessary to the plot, and part of me not so much. Ultimately I really enjoyed the read, and will definitely be reading the next in the series!

Description:

From author Angelina Kerner (Seven Hours: Challenge Accepted) comes an all-new fantasy series about Gardenia, a daughter of Athena, and her 100 years of coursework on how to create whole new worlds and subjects of her own.

A sheltered schoolchild in a realm of condescending gods and goddesses, Gardenia goes to Earth on a dare to witness the unsavory side of mankind for herself. Believing she can do better, she undertakes the formation of an entire galaxy, but without permission from Zeus.

Zeus disciplines her by assigning an epic 13-fold creational lesson destined to take her a century to complete. But he is taken aback once more when she makes an odd choice. She vows to fulfill this knowledge quest by tracking down a lost race of dragons, and discovering the secrets they’ve kept since time began.

Searching the universe to meet even one dragon may be a fool’s errand, but that’s the least of her worries. For ancient wartime resentments linger between the nations of dragons and deities, and some dragons would attack Gardenia on sight!

Yet she ventures out undaunted, learning unexpected things about nomadic life, tender love, and mortal peril along the way. The biggest surprise of all, though, goes by the name of Ri. Ri may be the man of her dreams, the voice in her head, the dragon she’s seeking, or all these things and more…

Meanwhile, the Fates brew sordid plans of their own and Hera jealously sets traps and trials for Gardenia at every chance. What’s a young goddess to do? Flight or fight?

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Review: Watching The Daisies, Life Lessions on the Importance of Slow, by Bridgid P Gallagher #5stars

MY REVIEW:

I am completely in Aww by Bridgid’s life and accomplishments. As a child, her family suffered much loss including her mother at a young age. Bridgid also has a series of medical ailments that starts in her youth. From abscess, to depression, to joint pain and more, which eventually leads to her diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Music, travel and family are a big help with the ongoing battle Bridgid is forced to cope with.

Fortunately, Brigid discovers her passion for natural healing methods and finds a real passion to travel, on a mission to bring spirituality and natural healing to the world. In this memoir she leads us on a journey to such amazing and beautiful places. Music and food play a huge part through out. From beginning to end, which I love. It all ties together so seamlessly.

For me it was a slow read, in a good way. It took me a few weeks to finish it up. It’s one that I took my time with for good reason. I felt it to be extremely informative and inspirational, so every time I picked it back up I was able to read slow, absorb, and learn something. Most memoirs I read fairly fast allowing myself to get sucked into to persons emotions, but with Watching The Daisies it just felt different. The story line was unique, and Brigid has led such an impressive and humble life, despite her ailments, I couldn’t help but to take my time. Everything about this book had a rich, practical, and informative feel to it. Kudos Brigid, and thank you for this beautiful insight. You’re a gem and I adore your journey.

 

DESCRIPTION:

If you enjoyed “Eat, Pray, Love-You will love this travel memoir!”

Millions of people around the world suffer from fibromyalgia; the majority of them are women. As yet, there is no cure.

In this memoir, Brigid P. Gallagher shares her experiences on:

 

    • The busy life she followed before succumbing to this debilitating disease

 

    • Stopping and soul searching for answers to her vast array of symptoms

 

    • Entering a new life of SLOW

 

    • Drawing on her knowledge and experience as a Natural Medicines therapist, she seeks out therapies to aid her healing and integrates a variety of self help techniques and lifestyle changes. She also unearths a love of solo travel including Egypt, India, Rome, Lourdes, Carcassonne and Bali…

 

    • Brigid learns many

insights

    •  about LIFE on her journey, the most valuable being:

“First learn to love thyself.”

    • In 2006, she began a new career in Organic Horticulture eventually teaching part time in schools. Although she has now retired from teaching, she continues to pursue her lifelong passion for gardening and

watching the daisies.

 

White Water Black Death, by Shaun Ebelthite #booktour #review @shanannigans81

White Water Black Death - cover.jpgWhite Water, Black Death

Author: Shaun Ebelthite

Release Date: Septemer 2017

Genre: Thriller/ Suspense

“A cruise ship is the perfect target for a biological attack”. These are the chilling words emailed to the Seaborne Symphony in the mid-Atlantic.

Magazine editor Geneva Jones has been sent on the trans-Atlantic cruise to help secure a major advertising agreement from the CEO of the cruise line Rachel Atkinson, but her efforts to win her over are curtailed by a mysterious crew death. Geneva suspects foul play. Rachel insists its suicide. A former investigative journalist, Geneva can’t resist digging deeper, but what she finds is far more devastating. There’s an Ebola outbreak on the ship, everyone is trapped aboard and Rachel is trying to keep it secret.

Geneva knows enough about Ebola to be terrified, but she’s also onto the biggest story of her career. As panic surges through the ship, she becomes fixated on a single question. How was the virus brought aboard? The answer is worse than she could have imagined, and the greatest exposé she’ll ever get, if she can only prove it.

Add to  Goodreads

Available to Purchase on Amazon

About the Author

Author Pic.jpg

Shaun Ebelthite was born in Namibia, raised in South Africa and educated in Dubai in the Middle East where he is a maritime and cruise journalist. He has been covering all aspects of ocean transport for more than five years and runs the Middle East’s foremost online cruise magazine. He has had two children’s books published, and is now branching out into a new genre with his first thriller.

Cruise Arabia

Amazon

MY REVIEW:

I’d like to thank the Author as well as R&R Book Tours for the free copy of this book that I received in exchange for an honest review.

There’s a lot going on with White Water Black Death by Shaun Ebelthite. Lots of characters, lots of complexities. It’s very fast paced, which I thought was awesome given the setting and tone. A few of the scenes were extremely unexpected, so the shock factor is really what kept me turning the pages rather than character attachment. I didn’t feel very emotionally invested with the people in the book, especially for the first half (maybe a little less… like a third.).

At first I couldn’t quite pinpoint my attachment struggle because it really is well written, yet I had to go back and re-read several pages a few times in order to draw a clear mental picture of what was really going on and with who. I feel like there are too many characters, and they’re a little underdevelopment out the gate, so it takes a while to get them all straight. I was a little confused. Luckily it turns around and the story really picks up once the characters are mentally cleared. It winds up being an excellent and very intense thrill ride!

That said, there are a couple distinct qualities about this book that I really loved.

First thing’s first, the plot is so unique. If you’re going to write a book about a deadly virus then what better place to put it than an inescapable cruise liner in the middle of dicey seas! What a setting! After reading it you can bet your ass I won’t be caught dead booking myself a cruise vacation anytime soon… if ever!

Secondly, the secrecy was very intricately laced and it really brought the story together. From the beginning to end it felt like every single character has something to hide. I found myself questioning everyone and looking for a motive and/or conspiracy behind everything, which was great. Also the secrecy between the Captain’s staff and the guests. The lies they tell left and right in order to keep everything under wraps and avoid a panic is so gut wrenching and eye opening, its almost surreal to think about something like this really happening. I’m willing to bet that if this book ever becomes a bestseller then there would easily be a very noticeable dent in the amount of cruise ship vacationers.

Lastly, there is so much more to the depth of the plot than just the sickness and it gives the entire story that much more umph. Geneva the reporter on board, is a really sneaky snoop — as any great reporter should be. She is relentless and utterly determined to get to the bottom of the secrets amongst the crew members and staff.

Ultimately I enjoyed the read, and am glad I picked it to review. 3.75 rating

For your chance to win 1 of 3 digital copies of “White Water, Black Death” click here!

Blog Tour Organized By: 

R&R Book Tours Button.jpg

R&R Book Tours

 

Review: Don’t Tell A Soul, by D.K Hood. 3 stars

MY REVIEW:

3 stars

Thank You NetGalley and the publisher for a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

There is a lot going on with Don’t Tell A Soul… probably too much. I was really excited to read it based on the description, some awesome reviews, along with the first fifteen pages or so.  But, after that it was kind of rocky for me. It took me quite a while to get through this book, and it drove me nuts that I couldn’t just get attached enough to finish it faster. Some parts sucked me right in and were SO well written, but then some parts I really had to force myself to get through.

For the first half of the book I blamed it on a reading slump, but once I got over halfway through I realized it wasn’t me so much, as my dislike for the main characters and the chaos of too many angles contributing to the suspense. I would have been happy if it would have only been about the missing people with regular ol’ police force on the case, rather than both the Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff having such outrageous backstories. Their characters felt a little too convenient, and yet still rather irritatingly inconsistent.

There are two factors I loved about this book: 1. The opening was creative and sharp and it sucked me right in. 2. Each time it jumped into the disappeared victim’s stories, it was absolutely engaging. (if D.K. Hood ever wrote a horror story without the investigative aspect, I’d be the first in line to read it!!!)

Now, I really hate writing reviews that just list all the things I don’t like, so I’ll cut this short. Jenna’s character I struggled with. Sometimes she was a rock solid, brilliantly a don’t mess with me type, and I loved that… But then she would flip a switch and make weird rookie mistakes and turn into a helpless damsel. As for Kane, he drove me insane. All technical (paranoid over-thinker type), no personality.

At this point I’m about 70% sure I’ll read the next in the series. But, only because of the aspects I liked, I REALLY liked… Also out of curiosity in the potential that D.K. Hood’s writing truly has.. Not so much emotional or personal investment in the story.

DESCRIPTION:

When a body is found stuffed into a barrel at the local dump, covered in long red cuts, Detective Jenna Alton and her new deputy, David Kane, rush to the scene.

Nothing ever happens in the small town of Black Rock Falls, so Jenna believes the victim must be one of two recent missing persons, and she fears for the life of the other.

Both were strangers to the town, but there’s nothing else to link them. Jenna knows someone must have seen something, but no one’s talking; how well does she really know the people around her?

Then a disturbing clue makes Jenna suspect a connection with other disappearances in the town’s history. Just when she begins asking the right questions, she realises she’s being followed. Is she next on the killer’s list?

In a race against time, Jenna and David must unlock the dark secret at the heart of the town, before it’s too late…

Review: Scandalous, by LJ Shen

MY REVIEW:

4 of 5 stars

Talk about hot poetic rage! I absolutely loved this book and I wanted to give it a five star rating so bad, yet I found myself comparing it to the first three books in the series and I just couldn’t quite put it in the same category as the previous Hot Hole stories. *sniffles a slaps forehead* But, in LJ’s defense I don’t think many books, like ever, will compare (especially to Defy – that one’s my fav)!! That said, lets talk about what I did love about Scandalous.

The loathing rage-full chemistry between Trent Rexroth and Edie Van Der Zee is dangerously sexy. Trent is the fourth Hot Hole’s story to be told in the Sinners Of Saint Collection, yet possibly the most complex. He grew up poor unlike his three best friends, which made his romance with money a different sort. They call him The Mute. He’s the strong silent type, but being quiet really only adds to his mystery. Getting inside his head is a f*cking treat! He’s brilliant. Kind when it counts and ruthless where it’s necessary.

Edie is more than ten years his younger, and barely legal. They both know the attraction is wrong, but the irresistible pull to one another is a powerful force that, well, is clearly not to be reckoned with. One thing I love, is that Edie isn’t your average naive rich spoiled teen. This poor sole has been raised by the nastiest wolf in the pack. She’s had to grow some thick skin and deal with some very real tough things in her life. Stuff that would break most adults. Despite carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders, she manages to maintain her poise, dignity, and absolutely admirable spitfire attitude. That’s not to mention she’s smart as a whip.

The two start out on rocky ground. They are forced into each other’s lives on less than pleasant terms. But, after the first time Trent witnessed Edie’s kind hearted spirit in an interaction with his daughter (she got the troubled child to smile and that was HUGE! and adorable) He melted a little around the edges, and had to make sure Edie stayed around the office for his kid.

What grew between the two was an emotional roller coaster. Both having fearless and nasty agendas, they wound up completely intertwined with one another. I love the banter!! I love the irresistible emotions! The ending was to die for, a beautiful shocker. And am 100% satisfied with the entire Sinners of Saint set as a whole. Each and every one of the Hot Hole stories is an absolute must read!

BLURB:

NOW A TOP TEN AMAZON BESTSELLER

“Best book of the year” – Angie’s Dreamy Reads.
“Best book I HAVE EVER READ” – Bookalicious Babes Blog.

They call him The Mute for a reason.
Hard, cold and calculated, he rarely speaks.
When he does, it’s with disdain.
When he does, his words aren’t meant for me.
When he does, my stomach flips and my world tilts on its axis.
He is thirty-three.
I am eighteen.
He’s a single dad and my father’s business partner.
I’m just a kid to him and his enemy’s daughter.
He’s emotionally unavailable.
And I am…feeling. Feeling things I shouldn’t feel for him.
Trent Rexroth is going to break my heart. The writing isn’t just on the wall, it’s inked on my soul.
And yet, I can’t stay away.
A scandal is the last thing my family needs. But a scandal is what we’re going to give them.
And oh, what beautiful chaos it will be.

Review: Your Forces And How To Use Them, by Christian D. Larson 3 stars

MY REVIEW:

I’m a firm believer in the Law of Attraction. I’ve been working at it for years and the process is full of ups and downs, of course. I love reading books on the subject. I’ve explored handfulls of such books, always hoping that there is something new that will click that I can soak up and use!

This one in particular I struggled with. I felt like it rambled and at least half the content was repetitive and forced. I also felt like it was poorly put together, almost like it needed a few rounds of revisions before being put out there for readers. It has a lot of potential and some amazing points to learn from, yet its lacking a few rounds of sanding and polish.

I wish I would have read it in paperback with a highlighter. And had I enjoyed it better, rather than feeling like I had to force my way through, then I would have considered buying a paperback copy just so I could get away with marking it up. I found myself wanting to pick it apart and make it better myself. There’d be a sentence or even a paragraph once every five to ten pages that really clicked and stood above. I’d like to highlight those portions so that I could go back through and study them without having to dig around in the rest of the mumbo-jumbo.

I few points I did love, was the elaboration through out on living as “I am”. I also liked the layered concept of subconscious thinking and the way Christian broke it down. I wasn’t a fan of so much talk of detentions. Nor did I buy the man inside stuff. I thought was kind of a weird outlook on the whole concept. Ultimately, because there was the hit and miss stuff that I loved, I think it made up enough to give it a three.

DESCRIPTION:

One often hears about the power of positive thinking, but rarely is a book so practical in teaching the reader how to refine such thought and use it as a foundation for achieving success. With chapters such as “How Man Becomes What He Thinks,” “The Art of Changing for the Better,” and “The Building of a Great Mind,” Larson challenges readers to use thought as a transformational force in order to become “greater and richer and more worthy as individuals.” <br><br>This guide to self-improvement is as timely now as when it was first written a century ago.<br><br><br>American New Thought pioneer CHRISTIAN DAA LARSON (b. 1874) is the author of the well-known Optimist Creed and published several important works of spiritual science, including Mastery of Self, In the Light of the Spirit, and The Great Within.

Review: The Liars Girl, Catherine Ryan Howard

Rating: 3.75 of 5 stars

Genre: Psychological Thriller, Crime-Fiction

My Review:

Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I didn’t like The Liar’s Girl as much as I hoped I would. It starts out kind of slow, taking a while to build up to the suspense. Once it does pick up it’s very thrilling and the plot is unique. I think I would have enjoyed it more if I wouldn’t have had to force myself through the first fifty pages or so. It just didn’t consume me like I thought it would from the description. I struggled to concentrate and found myself having to re-read portions in order to pick it up. I just felt detached. Also, there was a lack of surprising twists. The way it all unfolded seemed predictable.

That said, once it did pick up, it was really good. One thing I loved was the balance it has with past and present! Some books with this tactic struggle on the execution, but with The Liar’s Girl it totally fits, and I felt like there was a flow to the timeline bounce. It all pulled together nicely.

Most of the book is told from Alison’s point of view. I really liked her. While in college she fell completely head over heels with Will, A man who wound up being convicted as a cereal killer. What’s worse, is that her best friend was one of the victims. Alison moves far away from Will as well as everything she ever knew and loved. She started a new life in the Netherlands. Until ten years later, when shocking news pulls her back into her past.

There are new killings involving college girls, just the same as there had been ten years before, yet Will the man supposedly guilty of the previous kills is locked away in a psychiatric home. So who is the current perpetrator? Will refuses to talk to anyone but Alison.

I liked the investigative approach, and I love how much Alison is involved in it. It’s a very unique angle at a cereal killer book. It’s violent, mysterious, and just the right amount of confusing. I’ll definitely be reading more of Catherine’s work.

Description:

Will Hurley was an attractive, charming, and impressive student at Dublin’s elite St. John’s College—and Ireland’s most prolific serial killer. Having stalked his four young victims, he drowned them in the muddy waters of the Grand Canal. Sentenced to life imprisonment when he was just nineteen, Will is locked away in the city’s Central Psychiatric Hospital.

Freshman Alison Smith moved to the Big Smoke to enroll in St. John’s and soon fell hard for Will Hurley. Her world bloomed … and then imploded when Liz, her best friend, became the latest victim of the Canal Killer—and the Canal Killer turned out to be the boy who’d been sleeping in her bed. Alison fled to the Netherlands, changed her name, and, in ten years, has never once looked back.

When a young woman’s body is found in the Grand Canal, Garda detectives visit Will to see if he can assist them in solving what looks like a copycat killing. Instead, Will tells them he has something new to confess—but there’s only one person he’s prepared to confess it to.

The last thing Alison wants is to be pulled back into the past she’s worked so hard to leave behind. Reluctantly, she returns to the city she hasn’t set foot in for more than a decade to face the man who murdered the woman she was supposed to become.

Only to discover that, until now, Will has left out the worst part of all …

Review: Havanna Heat, Kim Knight 5 stars

My Bloggity Prelude To A Review:

I know what some of you are probably thinking, *wait wait, doesn’t Didi collaborate with Kim, and they’ve even published a short story collection together?  Well then, of course she’s going to give her five stars!*  

Let me just shut that down now, before it even gets started. First off, I write with Kim because she’s a phenomenal writer, and I wouldn’t collaborate otherwise. Second off, if I didn’t enjoy her work, I just wouldn’t review it at all. It’s kind of like an unspoken Indi-Authors code… If you love it, review the crap out of it!  If you don’t like it then just move on without bashing another writers work.

That said, let me just tell you, Havanna Heat is f**king AWESOME!  WOWOWOW can Kim ever write a damn sex scene!!!! Hot lovin’ on the beach?  I think yes! Insanely super extra hot lovin in a secret cove on a Cuban beach? Abso-freaking-lootly!

My Official Review:

This is by far one of the sexiest books I’ve read. Kim really has a way of nailing the intimate scenes, whoa! *heats under the collar*
Melinda is a wedding planer from London, that is invited by one of her brides to attend the wedding event in Havana, Cuba. The setting is to die for. Melinda planned and created the perfect wedding, and the resort chosen nailed her instructions flawlessly. Upon the invite Melinda decided to bring along a few friends to spice up the trip outside of the wedding events. What she didn’t realize is that she didn’t even need them because her trip was destined to be spiced in much different and much more exciting way!
Sebastian, also residing in London books a trip to the same resort at the same time. Although his reasoning behind the vacation is much harder to face. Sebastian’s girlfriend had passed a way a year earlier and he was struggling to cope with the anniversary of her death. He didn’t intend on finding a fling or anything else for that matter, although it was heavily suggested by his friends and therapist to do so. He especially didn’t intend on finding Melinda, but ohhhh did he ever.
The two crash together in whirlwind of fate, charisma, emotion, uncontrollably beach-side lust, and even fire (literally).
I love everything about this book and I can’t wait to read the next in the series! Kim, you’ve delivered an amazing story yet again! I read the entire thing in two sittings, and couldn’t get enough! This is a great start to a romance series!

Amazon Description:

Havana Heat is book one of the Romance Set in Paradises series of modern,steamy, suspenseful and romantic stories, set in exotic locations around the world. In Havana Heat readers are transported to the paradise of Cuba’s capital Havana, following the romance and heat build between Spaniard Detective Sebastian Garcia, and London born and bred wedding planner Melinda Jones. Melinda’s path crosses with the handsome and charming Detective at Casa De Amour Hotel as a guest at her client’s exotic location wedding. Both characters are in search of a slice of paradise, away from their own troubled love life back home. Once their paths cross the romance and sizzle begins.

When all hell breaks out at Casa De Amour Hotel, and conflict builds over their past both characters are faced with a decision to take a risk and see out their romance, or walk away. Forever asking themselves what could have been. Romance, thrills and excitement await in book one of this modern romance series set in paradise.

Book Review: The Slapstyx by Annabelle Franklin 4 of 5 stars

MY REVIEW:

The Slapstyx is very appropriate for its targeted age. I have a nine year old niece that adores to read. Her sister is twelve and she struggles. As soon as I finished this book I told my sister to get off her but and get a copy for both of them to read!

They story is far fetched and extremely magical, yet clearly and intelligently written in a way that pre-teens can actually grasp and relate to. Not only that, but it has a few educational qualities about pollution and moral values. Ultimately it sends a good message.

I wasn’t extremely fond of the twins, Gem and Gorgie. I felt their characters lacking despite their magic. They were clever enough, but sometime seemed to be missing. But, that being said, the goblins and Mr. Zigstack to make up for the personality lack of the girls. I loved them. Wonderfully engaging. Great for kids!

 

 

DESCRIPTION:

What if the dirt and grime that appears in our homes was actually put there by goblins?
What if those goblins filled our homes with dirt that could only be removed with one cleaning product – a detergent that was poisonous to the sea?
Twin sisters Georgie and Gem are the only ones who know about black magician Zachary Zigstack’s evil scheme to make his toxic detergent a world bestseller. Luckily the twins have a magical skill – they can leave their bodies and fly around in spirit form – which means they can spy on Zigstack’s goblin accomplices and find a way to stop them.
But can they do it before all the sea creatures are destroyed? The Slapstyx Goblins are dangerous as well as dirty, and have nasty ways of killing people who cross them…

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