Category Archives: Mystery & Suspense

Book Review: Beyond Escape @DeborahkJensen

BeyondEscapePublisher: Beaver’s Pond Press
Author: Deborah K. Jensen
Genre: Romance Suspense, Mystery
Review Source: Bostick Communications/Author

★ ☆★ ☆★ – 5 Stars!

Summary
After separating from her husband of twenty years, Kim is in desperate need of an escape. Retreating to her parents’ home in Texas for a month, Kim encounters ample distractions, the best being Camilo, an alluring Latino man seventeen years her junior. However, when returning to Texas unearths memories of a long-ago lover, Kim discovers her unintentional involvement in a series of dangerous escapades, bringing her deeper into her past than she ever cared to venture. Beyond Escape follows Kim as she pursues a trail of drugs, murder, and secret love affairs that were meant to stay buried.

Review
Wow, this was a great read. I would love to know if there would be a squeal. I was constantly flipping through wanting to know more. I fought fatigue during sickness to finish this book, it is THAT GOOD!
I know I am heartbroken, I feel a little home-sick when I closed the back cover. I will forever hold the characters in my heart.
Kim takes a relaxing break from her divorce to head to Texas to spend the Holidays with her parents. What she doesn’t realize is how much she is able to let go, and find out what she had been missing. As soon as she is heading back to Texas her past memories keep creeping up to her. What she finds out is crazy, but so worth it.
If you love adventure, mystery, love, relationships, family… all mixed up into one book, you would love this. I would recommend it!

About the Author
Deborah K. Jensen was born and raised in Duluth, Minnesota. Writing has been a life long passion. Her first published work was when she was in third grade. Her poem was published in the Red Cross Magazine and at that time she announced to her teacher, “I’m going to be a writer.” Life, however, took a different turn for Deborah and she spent most of her career in the finance world. Then, inspiration came to her and her life long dream came true. Beyond Escape is her debut novel inspired by real live relationships and experiences.

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Disclosure: I received this book for free from the Bostick Communications/Author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Review: Stillwell

StillWellPublisher: Red Feather Publishing
Author: Michael Phillip Cash
Genre: Mystery & Thriller, Suspense
Review Source: Author

★ ☆★ – 3 Stars

Summary
Paul Russo’s wife just died. While trying to get his family’s life back in order, Paul is being tormented by a demon who is holding his wife’s spirit hostage on the other side. His fate is intertwined with an old haunted mansion on the north shore of Long Island called Stillwell Manor. Paul must find clues dating back hundreds of years to set his wife’s soul free.

Review
Cash really knows how to draw his crowd or readers in when he puts together a story. His characters are easily to get attached to. The prologue alone had me second guessing to even read the book. However, I did.. of course.
With reading Stillwell I found myself knowing what will happen: the cold rooms, smell… due to the fact of it being “matter of fact” for a ghost story. Some of the anti-log just didn’t fit with me. I guess I wanted more, I am not really sure. Some of the scenes seemed to lack, or have you question motive. I don’t want to give away things in the book. I just don’t see how the scenes fit in, maybe because the most popular, scary ghost stories are about motive, and we have the answers to why they do things. Cash just seems to lack on giving us a detailed description on why things happened.
To be quiet honest, I am a wuss when it comes to scary stuff. I will hide my head in my husband’s arm, or look away from the TV if I think something will jump at me. With that being said, I didn’t feel that way with this book. I found it more as a story, as a family who are dealing with death, and how they coped in a house that was “haunted”, if you want to call it that.

About the Author
Michael Phillip Cash born and raised on Long Island, Michael has always had a fascination with horror writing and found footage films. He wanted to incorporate both with his debut novel, Brood X. Earning a degree in English and an MBA, he has worked various jobs before settling into being a full-time author. He currently resides on Long Island with his wife and children.

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Disclosure: I received this book for free from the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Review: Brood X

BroodXPublisher: Red Feather Publishing
Author: Michael Phillip Cash
Genre: Mystery & Thriller, Suspense
Review Source: Author

★ ☆★ ☆ – 4 Stars

Summary
Seth is laid off from work. His wife Lara just found out they are expecting a baby this summer. Seth plans on documenting the entire pregnancy with his brand new digital camcorder.
During an evening home watching television, the news reports that a swarm of cicada (Brood Ten) are expected to overwhelm the entire Northeast.
Brood Ten is vicious and ready to invade.
During a sweltering summer night, Brood Ten emerges and wreaks havoc with the electric grid, phone and cell service, wi-fi, food and water supply. Civilization as they know it is gone.
Seth and Lara are thrown back to the stone age in their own home with trillions of cicada trying to deposit their eggs and breed.
Fast paced and filled with tension, Brood Ten is the perfect summer read when you’re sitting outside listening to the cicadas sing.

Review
Oh, I usually hate books about bugs. No really, but something about this book really made me want to read it. I don’t think I will ever go back outside “peacefully”. This book has a little bit of it all: pregnancy, marriage, humor, friendship, interesting, grossed out, etc. There is definitely enough in this book to keep you turning the pages, and to keep you on your toes, with your ears tuned in. Michael let the book gradually build into the setting, giving us a better understanding of what will happen. I personally think if it wasn’t for the gradual build then the reader would lose understanding, so I think he did a great job with timing it out perfectly.
There are just some topics or conversations that hold my “yeah, right” category or labelled as childish; however, the ending is fabulous, and I bet you will read this book just as quickly as I did.
If you like books that can creep you out, make your skin crawl, your heart stop at some places, and hold your breath than this book is for you! Now I wonder if this book will make it to the movies, I think it can!

About the Author
Michael Phillip Cash born and raised on Long Island, Michael has always had a fascination with horror writing and found footage films. He wanted to incorporate both with his debut novel, Brood X. Earning a degree in English and an MBA, he has worked various jobs before settling into being a full-time author. He currently resides on Long Island with his wife and children.

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Disclosure: I received this book for free from the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Review: A Matter of Trust

Matter of TrustPublisher: Thomas Nelson
Author: Lis Wiehl
Contributor: April Henry
Genre: Christian Fiction, Mystery & Suspense
Series: A Mia Quinn Mystery #1
Review Source: BookSneeze

★ ☆★ ☆★ – 5 Stars!

Summary: (Goodreads)
When life is murder, who can you trust?

One minute Mia Quinn is in her basement, chatting on the phone with a colleague at the prosecutor’s office. The next minute there’s a gunshot over the line, and Mia listens in horror as her colleague and friend Colleen bleeds to death.
Mia’s a natural for heading up the murder investigation, but these days she has all she can do to hold her life together. As a new widow with a pile of debts, a troubled teenaged son, and a four-year-old who wakes up screaming at night, she needs more time with her family, not less–and working Colleen’s case will be especially demanding. But Colleen was her friend, and she needs to keep her job. So she reluctantly teams up with detective Charlie Carlson to investigate Colleen’s death. But the deeper they dig, the more complications unfold–even the unsettling possibility that someone may be coming after her.
Lis Wiehl’s signature plot twists and relatable characters shine in this absorbing series debut . . . with an intriguing cameo from her best-selling Triple Threat series.

My Review:
This is a book you will want to read all in one day. It was so hard for me to put down. The first few pages have you wanting more so fun of intensity, then you are so far into the book that you just have to keep going and going.. well, you get the point.
The mystery was very well written. I loved how in depth she took us, and how everything tied together even threw every twist she brought to the book. I can’t imagine what the other books in this series will be like. If they are anything like this book they will be absolutely worth the money spent!
Lis has a beautiful writing technique, the words run smoothly, and there is so much open for your imagination as the story plays out in front of your eyes. The characters are relatable; their stories and emotions are real. Although the murder of Colleen is the central plot, this book tackles bullying and secrets, making A Matter of Trust a little more challenging than just a great mystery.

About the Author & Contributor:
Lis Wiehl is the author “Face of Betrayal,” a New York Times Best Seller.
She has also written “Winning Every Time: How to Use the Skills of a Lawyer in the Trials of Your Life” and “The 51% Minority: How Women Still Are Not Equal and What You Can Do About It.”
In addition to her written work, Wiehl is currently a legal analyst for Fox News. She has been with the network since 2001.
A graduate of Harvard Law School, Wiehl is an adjunct professor at New York Law School.

April Henry writes mysteries and thrillers. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her family. If you’ve read one of her books, she would love to hear from you. Hearing from her readers makes her eager to keep writing.
When she was 12, she sent a short story about a six-foot tall frog who loved peanut butter to Roald Dahl, the author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He liked it so much he arranged to have it published in an international children’s magazine.
Her dream of writing went dormant until she was in her 30s, working at a corporate job, and started writing books on the side. Those first few years are now thankfully a blur. Now she is very lucky to make a living doing what she loves. She has written 13 novels for adults and teens, with more on the way. Her books have gotten starred reviews, been picked for Booksense, translated into six languages, been named to state reading lists, and short-listed for the Oregon Book Award.
She also reviews YA literature and mysteries and thrillers for the Oregonian, and has written articles for both The Writer and Writers Digest.

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I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com  book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Review: Spring Cleaning

Spring CleaningPublisher: Self-Published
Author: Brandi Salazar
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Review Source: Author

★ ☆★ ☆★ – 5 Stars!

Summary (Goodreads)
Sometimes, relationships can be deadly.
Terri thought she was marrying a strong, loving man, only to find that beneath that handsome face lies something cold, brutal, and dangerous. After years of abuse, Randy takes things a little too far, and Terri finally summons the courage to take matters into her own hands and make her escape. But freedom comes at a price.
Forging a new life, Terri tries to forget her past, but she can’t help looking over her shoulder at every turn. When prison bars can no longer hold Randy, and her past comes knocking, Terri finds that the strength to trust again may be her only salvation

My Review:
This is the first book I have read from Ms. Salazar and I would like to continue to read more of her books! Spring Cleaning starts off kinda more into the storyline then I wanted to be. I think it would have been better if we could have built up getting to know the main characters like Randy, and how his rage/anger started.
The book definitely had me wanting more by the time I was turning a page. I would get through a chapter then another one, till I was almost half way through the book. It is scary to think some women go through this abuse on a daily basis. I would have purchased an alarm system for everything I owned, or tried to. I know Terri’s money must have been tight with her working at a club.
I love how Luke could feel Terri’s emotions without asking her a billion questions. He knew when something was wrong, and wanted to help right then. He was a remarkable character in the story!
Spring Cleaning is a book that would be enjoyable by a fire, the story is very appealing, and will have you wanting more!

About the Author:
Brandi Salazar started writing poetry, short stories, and novels at a very young age, weaving tales to share with her friends that were geared toward making them laugh. Today her writing habits reflect that, ranging from mystery/suspense/thriller to paranormal and YA romance, and no matter how different her works may be, you can always find a healthy dose of action, romance, and humor. Under the pen name J.C. Valentine, she also writes erotic romance fiction.
A longtime resident of Ohio, Brandi lives with her husband, three children, a dog and five cats that keep her very busy. She holds a degree in Business and has plans to continue her education so she can one day become an editor to authors everywhere. When she isn’t crafting her next novel, toiling away at schoolwork, or hanging out with family, you can find her curled up in her favorite chair with her nose buried in a book.

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Disclosure: I received this book for free from the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.