Taking Back Sunday (Incarnate #1) by Cristy Rey

Taking Back Sunday (Incarnate, #1)Taking Back Sunday by Cristy Rey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday has been on the run for the last several years. Cyrus and his pack of werewolves have been hired to find her. Cyrus and the wolves had captured Sunday years ago for a witch named Bernadette who used Sunday to fuel her own powers until Sunday escaped. The encounter this time goes completely differently as Cyrus finds himself incredibly drawn to Sunday and doesn’t want to see her turned over again.

Sunday had begun setting down roots and trying to live a mundane life. She’s made a couple of friends who practice witchcraft and assured Sunday that it’s all light magic and safe. When Sunday meets the circle of witches she finds one has a deeper, darker agenda. As Sunday begins to investigate the wolves catch up with her and through Cyrus’ attraction they end up involved helping Sunday take down the dark witch.

The book got off to a rather slow start. You meet Sunday and her friends in the current storyline, then the Werewolves who were following her but it then spends several chapters giving a glimpse at the back story without much progress to the current plot. A problem with this for me was it truly was just a glimpse into the past and the present characters. The author never really tells what it means to be the Incarnate or Sunday’s powers. She doesn’t tell what Werewolves or Vampires can do or what could kill them etc in this book. Your kind of left with assuming they are the ‘typical’ versions. For example, there are books with vampires that kill to survive, some that can feed on humans but not kill, some that feed on animals. Some can be in daylight, some can only come out at night… There’s never a good explanation of how the characters in this series really are.

Another kind of bothersome part of the book is the characters don’t get much of a chance to interact naturally. For example during a phone call you get the “hello” then several paragraphs or pages of the thoughts or description of the conversations occurring instead of an actual conversation between characters then the last few bits of dialogue. I felt I’d get a better feel on the personalities and characters if things were to flow more naturally between them instead of just descriptions and thoughts.

The actual plot in the book once it got going was rather good. I just felt a bit withdrawn from the characters from the lack of interaction and details. In the end it just ended up an ok read but nothing that truly drew me in and made me care about the story and characters more.

Deadly Messengers by Susan May

Deadly MessengersDeadly Messengers by Susan May
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Deadly Messengers touches on the very real topic of mass killings. It starts off as a man enters a neighborhood cafe and proceeds to kill several workers and patrons with an ax. We are then introduced to Kendall Jennings who is a freelance journalist who normally writes puff pieces for magazines. Kendall carries her own emotional trauma with her when it comes to violence but agrees to do an article on the survivors of the killings since she is at a slow point in her career and needs to make her rent that month.

The story also introduces us to Detectives O’Grady and his partner Trip who are assigned the case. These two essentially become good cop/bad cop after meeting Kendall as she’s investigating the murders. O’Grady has his own personal dilemmas involving violence and reporters to deal with in the story. When more killings occur the detectives are doing their best to understand what is happening in their city and how/why these are occurring and answer the question of are they somehow connected.

Deadly Messengers is a book that I personally like to think of as ‘reality horror’. As the events in the book are something that I could possibly see covered on the nightly news. Readers especially from the U.S. have probably come across a news story about a mass shooting at some point. Most recently the shooting in the Louisiana movie theater comes to mind and a few years before that the same situation at a theater in Colorado. These works of fiction based on reality send chills down my spine while reading because I can’t help but think to the situations and that it does happen.

In that respect other recent books I’ve read that I also thought covered real situations were Stephen King’s – Mr. Mercedes and Caroline Kepnes – YOU. While the events in those books along with Deadly Messengers have the writing style completely different, in all three they do seem to all have the one thing in common that the killers could be on your nightly news and very real feeling. If you are a fan of that type of book then Deadly Messengers is definitely worth checking out.

The book was real page turner for me. I found myself caught up in the story and suspense and how it would all turn out. I was immediately a fan of Kendall, she showed her strength taking on the story of the murders and dealing with the detectives all while having her own vulnerable side. In the end it all had a realistic feel behind it incorporating things that I had read about so it all just worked and tied together nicely.

I received an advance copy of this book from the author in exchange for a honest review. A huge thank you to Susan May for allowing me to read her book as this is one that I really enjoyed.

Mug Meals: Delicious Microwave Recipes by Dina Cheney

Mug Meals: Delicious Microwave RecipesMug Meals: Delicious Microwave Recipes by Dina Cheney
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This is such a wonderful recipe book that gives new ideas for a quick easy meal to serve as many as needed. Most would think this would be great for a single person but really it is nice to have on hand for those busy moments you need something quickly. The times the rest of the family has other plans. For the busy working people that need to take a quick fix to the office for lunch and so many other possibilities. Also great for trying something new but not wanting to fix a huge amount of something you may not like.

The instructions are very easy to follow. The photos of the food just make your mouth water. I’d highly recommend picking up a copy of this book just to have on hand for a something different when in a rush. Ditch the drive-thru and pick something a little healthier from Mug Meals.

Also, a helpful hint that I didn’t see mentioned in the book, although I may of been to busy looking over the recipes… I myself buy ground beef in bulk when on sale and fry it up to freeze in individual servings as needed. That would make these recipes calling for ground beef even easier to do if you have your individual servings ready to pop into your mug which of course could also apply to other ingredients.

The Girl Whom the Dragon Tattooed by Steven A. Simpson

The Girl Whom the Dragon TattooedThe Girl Whom the Dragon Tattooed by Steven A. Simpson
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The Girl Whom the Dragon Tattooed is a story about Kelli who on her 18th birthday rushes out to the tattoo parlor to get her first tattoo now that she is an “adult” since her parents wouldn’t let her before then. She finds an old book in the back when looking to find a design and falls in love with a dragon tat that would wrap around her arm. Once complete the tattoo transfers her to another realm where the soldiers are marked by the dragon they serve and protect with the same tattoo.

Overall the story didn’t quite work for me. Kelli seems just what she is in the beginning, a young girl wanting to rebel against her parents. But when we make the jump to the other land the general is found to have raped young female soldiers and it just got too dark a subject for such a short story. Just felt rushed through such dark subject matter for what started off more of a carefree story. Perhaps it would’ve worked better as a full length novel. The idea behind the tattoo taking Kelli into another world was intriguing though.

Annie Gomez and the Gigantic Foot of Doom by Jay Cutts

Annie Gomez and the Gigantic Foot of DoomAnnie Gomez and the Gigantic Foot of Doom by Jay Cutts
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I won this book from Goodreads First Reads.

This book is about Annie and her friends encountering a couple of different alien races and saving the world from certain doom. Lighthearted fun read that would be good for anyone but particularly the younger audiences because there isn’t any adult language or situations involved.

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