Book Review: Stealing Time by Rebecca Bowyer

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This is the first novel I have read by Rebecca Bowyer, though I have her first novel Maternal Instinct sitting on my kindle and I will have to get to it soon.

Stealing time is a dystopian science fiction novel set in a future that doesn’t seem like it could be too far away, which is a pretty scary concept. In a time where the planet’s resources are dwindling, people’s lifespans have been set, using an implanted chip which they receive at birth, to only allow them to live until they are 65. To even get to live to 65, they have to work a certain amount of hours and be productive to society.

Someone has found a way of ‘stealing time’ from these chips and giving it to another person, and children are the best resource to steal this from as they have the most amount of life to steal. This first happened 10 years before, but the people were caught and the technology was supposedly destroyed.

One of the main characters, Dr Varya Galanos who invented the chip, carries this as a burden, along with a secret she has been hiding from all but a few people. Her son who should have died of cancer is being kept alive in a time chamber of sorts. I can’t begin to imagine what this would be like for the child who lives each day at the same age in the same place while his mother is supposed to be researching to find a cure for the rare cancer that is trying to kill him. Her mother, her friend Zoe and her friend/employee Marisa are the only ones who know.

When Zoe’s child is stolen and returned near death by the time stealers, Varya has to help her friend save her child. Secrets start to unravel and Varya becomes even more secretive and desperate than previously as everything, including the time for her son, starts to come to a head.

This was an interesting novel, and as I said, disturbing in a way that I could see something like this coming about, hopefully not in my lifetime, but not too far off. Already, the elderly aren’t often held in high regard, we are overpopulated in many areas and resources are running out or being destroyed by greed and governments and corporations. It doesn’t seem too far fetched that time chips and rations on things we take for granted could become a real thing.

It is also the exploration of just how far a mother would go to save her child, and this alone is quite scary, a bit like another novel I read recently, once again set in an Australia not too far away where a mother is pushed to her limits to save her children. It would seem, parents, but mothers especially, have no limits when it comes to saving their children.

Thank you to Rebecca Bowyer for a copy of this novel in return for an honest review.

New Release Book Review: The Truth & Addy Loest by Kim Kelly

Wow!

This was a story I didn’t want to end.

As I got pulled deeper and deeper into Addy’s story, drawing several parallels to some of my own struggles, I wanted to stay there with her as she dealt with those struggles, the stories her brain told her, the encounter with the woman who owned the curiosity shop, beautiful and tender-hearted Dan, her brother Nick and her ever grieving father.

Addy is so like many broken parts of me, so many broken parts of many others, but she shines brightly even as she doesn’t see it, even as she doubts everything about herself and thinks she is dying.

As always Kim Kelly brings to the fore important issues, not just of then, but of now. The fight women have to be treated with respect and not as an object for a man to drool over or take advantage of, the fight to not be afraid. She deals with past injustices of the war, both WWI and WWII, the effects felt generations on by those who come after and carry those memories in their cells. She touches on the need to hide who we are from those we love, to protect ourselves and them. How hard it was to be gay in the 80s, not that it is easier now for many, but as a society it is much more accepted.

I loved Addy’s love of beautiful dresses and her style, I wish I could own half the dresses she had in her closet. It makes me want to go hunting for beautiful dresses to wear, dresses with stories to tell.

This story is full of emotion, of damaged people, some trying to make sense of their lives, to discover who they are and some, like Addy’s father who get on with things because they must.

When quantum physics was wound into the story it made me laugh, because my mind works a bit like the way Dan described how quantum physics works, and though this is most certainly one concept I will never understand, I understand the feeling behind the concepts and I thought the author did a wonderful job of conveying this.

I loved this novel and I will read it again and possibly again after that. The writing and language is exquisite and perfect and such a pleasure to read.

Thanks to Kim Kelly for providing me with a digital copy in return for an honest review.

Add it to your Goodreads ready for February 2021

New Release Book Review: Montana – Lyrebird Lake #1 by Fiona McArthur

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The first in the Lyrebird Lake series by Fiona McArthur, we meet Montana who has recently lost her husband and is about to give birth on a mountain. A trained midwife, she takes this in her stride and when her friends brother Andy comes looking for her he is instantly charmed by her.

I liked Montana, who is still struggling with grief and coming to terms with being a single mum. When Andy offers her a chance to get away to Lyrebird Lake with the hope she will want to work at his hospital, she jumps at the chance.

I really liked Andy, he was single-minded and passionate about his hospital, and he was adorable with Dawn, Montana’s newborn baby girl. I loved how he gave Montana space to come to terms with her loss and her feelings at the same time as gently pushing her to move on and start a new life. I also loved how open he was about his feelings towards Montana, not being afraid to say what he felt even if she rejected him.

The people of Lyrebird Lake all thought a lot of Andy and were so welcoming to Montana, it would be lovely to live in such a great community.

This was a sweet, feel good romance.

I’m looking forward to book 2.

Thanks to the author for providing me with a digital copy of this novel in return for an honest review.

New Release Book Review: Transit of Angels by Desney King

IMG_20201004_174817.jpgThis novel was exquisite in every way, the language and imagery drew me in and led me along on a beautiful journey, where the landscape and settings were as clear as if I were there myself. Desney King’s writing is like poetry and conveys so much depth.

This is far more than just a story of grief, I went into this novel knowing very little about it and I had no idea the journey I was about to be taken on or how deep this novel would prove to be.  

My journey with Angel was a powerfully moving one, I didn’t want to break the connection, even wandering along the beach at a determinedly slow pace so that I could continue to read as I walked.

From the very start, this novel had me in tears and by the end, I’d been through every emotion I can think of. The tears came on and off completely unexpectedly at times and near the end, I felt I was about to have my heart ripped out again.

I loved Angel, as she dealt with her grief, and as she explored what happens to us after death, as she looked for signs and asked is there still a connection to our loved ones? I loved how she used art to help her heal, being an Art Therapist I know how powerful a tool this can be. And how she allowed the quaint mudbrick cottage on the river to help heal her. 

So much of the spiritual nature of this novel spoke to me, many of the ideas that Angel learns about are the very things I’ve been searching for and dabbling in for nearly 20 years. Maybe this book is a message for me to take up the search again.

The cast of characters that help Angel through her loss were wonderful, all with their own painful pasts and secrets, all who have learnt or are still learning to move on with life. I especially loved Clyde, an older gentleman who becomes a friend and a great source for Angel to learn about the spiritual realm. There were also characters who weren’t so nice, who were judgemental and unsupportive, but even these people have lessons for Angel to learn.

This is a novel that will stay with me, and one that I will revisit again in the not distant future.

Thank you to the author for providing me with a copy of this novel in return for an honest review.

Release date for this novel is 19th October 2020.

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Cover Reveal & Teaser Except: Never a Saint by Lila Rose

 

cover reveal Never a saint

 

Never a Saint Ebook Cover-1BLURB

Kylo Lee, prospect to the Diamond MC, makes a career shift to help better his future. He doesn’t know it will change him in more ways than one, and it’s all to do with a certain man who confuses and annoys him, while sending his emotions wild.

Just when everything is falling into place, life takes a turn down a road where Kylo doesn’t want to go. His past comes back to bite him in the ass. Pain surrounds him and all that can make him happy is vengeance, and the man who surprisingly still stands at his side.  

 

Release Date: August 4, 2020                Add to GOODREADS

Series: Polished P & P #2             Genre: MM Romance

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Never a Saint CR TeaserEXCERPT

“Kylo,” he called. I looked to him as he walked back to where he’d left his phone. Then he had my eyes again. He put a knee to the bed, leaned over, and pressed his lips to my shoulder. 

“Night,” he said, and looked up at me.

I cleared my thick throat. 

He’d kissed my shoulder. 

My skin. 

“Yeah, night.” I nodded. He grinned, straightened, and walked from the room. 

What the hell was that all about? 

Why did he do that? 

This was fucking weird. He made no sense. I scrubbed a hand over my face. 

 

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AUTHOR BIO

Lila was born in Brisbane Australia, her step-dad was in the Army which caused them to move around a lot. They finally settled in country Victoria, Australia. Being the youngest of four children she admits she was spoilt a bit. Even drove her mum crazy when she refused to eat meat at a young age.

Now, Lila lives with her husband and two children.

She started writing in 2013 and self-published the first of the Hawks MC: Ballarat Charter series- Holding Out. Since then, she has published eleven other titles, which range from erotica, humorous romance, YA and paranormal. 

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Book Review: The Game of Love by Libby M Iriks

the game of loveThis was a really lovely second-chance romance novella by local West Australian author Libby M Iriks. Set in Rockingham a coastal suburb just south of Perth, Libby uses the local activities and environment to help her characters come together.

Alyssa has put her career on hold and returned home from living over East for the past 10 years. She is struggling with a not so hopeful medical issue that is going to require treatment and has returned so her family can support her. The very last thing she is thinking of is romance, especially with an old friend from her teenage years.

Dean is a happy-go-lucky guy who plays the field and has absolutely no intention of finding ‘the one’ of falling in love and settling down. When he literally bumps into Alyssa both of these characters will have their plans for the future knocked on their heads.

I loved these two characters and really enjoyed the friendship that formed between them, I loved all the experiences they did together, especially the skydiving, which is one of my favourite experiences ever, though I did mine in Jurien Bay, not Rockingham, I can still picture what it was like to be free-falling over the ocean like they did.

Both of these characters second-guess themselves and what they are doing more than once, and both need to learn to open up and talk to each other and share what they are thinking and feeling and what they have been through if they are ever to make a go of having a future together.

An enjoyable read for a lazy afternoon. You can get your copy for free by subscribing to Libby M Iriks newsletter here.

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20Backlistin2020 book review: Out of Luck by Kendall Talbot

Out of LuckOh my god, this book has sat on my digital shelf for 11 months, I am so glad I finally got to it because it was an action-packed read that kept me guessing until the end.

When Charlene’s father is murdered in front of her it is the catalyst that sets of a series of events that after a while she has no control over, as secrets and lies begin to come unravelled, Charlene throws herself into the path of danger.

While I couldn’t even begin to imagine running off to Cuba to hunt down my past, that is exactly what Charlene does. Her only saving grace is that she is lucky enough to have landed sexy ex-naval officer Marshall as her skipper to get her across from the US to Cuba, an illegal and potentially dangerous journey in itself.

These two have an instant connection, but both fight it as they have their own agendas and their own personal issues to deal with.

Charlene was one tough young woman, her father had given her lots of training over the years, and this is the only thing that kept her alive. While I thought some (most) of her decisions were really not the best idea, she was running completely on her emotions and to her, they seemed to be the only decisions to make.

While Marshall is determined not to care about Charlene, when she doesn’t make the rendezvous, he is, of course, determined to try and save her.

There is plenty of action, suspense, and chemistry in this fast-paced romantic suspense novel and I am going to try and hunt down the first book in the Maximum Exposure series. I remember reading and enjoying book 2 Out of Mind but it looks like these are being rereleased, so I might have to wait to read book 1 Out of Reach.

Thanks to NetGalley and Kensington Books for a digital copy of this novel in return for an honest review.

FB_IMG_1577105032228#AWW2020  25/50

 

New Release Book Review: When Grace Went Away by Meredith Appleyard

IMG_20200420_125856When Grace Went Away by Meredith Appleyard is the second novel I have read by this author, I do have a few more of her novels waiting on my shelf and I do aim to get to those as soon as is possible. This was a very enjoyable read, there was so much in it to explore and uncover. A dysfunctional family and grief being two important themes running through the story. There is also romance and forgiveness, relationships, friendship, and discovering who one truly is and what they want out of life regardless of age.

I found this a hard book to put down and even took it to work with me just in case I got the opportunity to read some, which amazingly I did.

The family members in this novel are all so different and so complicated. Grace, the eldest of the four siblings was sent away to boarding school at a young age and she’s never fit into the family in quite the way she wished because of this. She has a high power job with a financial institution and is off to London to start a new position. This is the catalyst to a load of changes that are about to happen to the Fairley family members.

Grace goes to London, following a dream she thought she wanted, before she left, she met Aaron while she was back in Miners Ridge saying a last goodbye to her family, and Aaron causes her to question some of the things she believed she wanted and didn’t want out of life. I could really feel the struggles that Grace was going through, things she’d always controlled changed once she left Australia, her family seemed to be changing and making decisions without her and she meanwhile was feeling very much out of control and conflicted in the choices she’d made.

Grace’s mother, Sarah, was a complex character, she’d left her husband and children a few years after the death of her youngest son and this caused a lot of strain and severing of ties with her children and the town she had lived in for over 30 years. She has struggled to come to terms with what she has been through and when Grace leaves and her elderly mother passes away, she has to take a look at her life and at nearly 70 years of age, she is determined to make some changes. I really loved the journey that Sarah went through, the growth she found, and the relationships she formed, through taking a chance on changing her circumstances.

Sarah’s decisions also cause a domino of changes to her other two children and her ex-husband who live back in Miners Ridge, the town she left 8 years before. There is plenty of emotion, recriminations, and learning that happens for all the family members who all have some pretty big issues of their own to deal with.

There are so many dynamics in this novel and I was completely absorbed in the lives of this family. I loved all the characters, though the jury is out on Grace’s father Doug.

Thanks to Harlequin Australia for a copy of this novel in return for an honest review.

Publication date 18/5/2020

Buy from HarperCollins Australia

#AWW2020    27/50

New Release Book Review: The Boundary Fence by Alissa Callen

The Boundary FenceI always like returning to the town of Woodlea and in The Boundary Fence, book #7 in the series, it was wonderful to reconnect with the characters from the previous books as well as experience a new couple falling in love.

I loved meeting Ella again and learning more about her and what she had been through to cause her to swear off relationships. The same goes for Saul, a newcomer who has bought the property next to Ella’s. Both have some serious issues with relationships, but the chemistry between them means that they are both struggling to keep the boundaries they’ve spent so long building, standing.

As well as the relationship between Saul and Ella, there is a mystery involving Violet who used to own Ella’s house. Her daughter went missing many years ago and Violet has always wondered what happened to make her disappear and what happened to keep her from coming back. Violet has always left the porch light on for her daughter in the hopes that one day she will return. Ella and Saul get drawn into helping Violet try and uncover what really happened all those years ago, working together on this doesn’t help the growing attraction each of them feels.

I really enjoyed this story, and I hope to return to Woodlea again and catch up with the characters, old and new.

Thanks to NetGalley and Harlequin Australia for a digital copy in return for an honest review.

#AWW2020   32/50

 

Book Review: One Summer Between Friends by Trish Morey

A Summer Between FriendsI wasn’t quite sure if I was going to enjoy this book when I picked it up, but I’m really glad I did because it was a really good read.

The story revolves around three friends, though it predominantly revolves around Sarah’s story, her friends’ Floss and Jules, play important roles in the past events and how the future will play out for all three of them.

Sarah’s marriage has failed and she was betrayed by her friends, now her world seems to be closing in on the past when she is needed to return to Lord Howe Island after her mother has a fall. Sarah’s mother, Dot, now there is a character I detested from the get-go. She was a nasty person indeed and how Sarah managed to grow up with a mother who continually put her down and said nasty things is beyond me, I continually hoped Sarah would stand up to her and tell her to “shut up!” I know if I had a mother like that, nothing would have dragged me back to help out, especially when it meant running into old friends who I’d been avoiding for several years. Sarah’s father, Sam, was a nice man, but I couldn’t understand why he never really stood up for her against her mother, the comment ‘you know how she is’ got old quickly.

Floss, married with five children, is struggling through her own issues with her husband Andy, and I felt for Floss in this struggle and the belief that perhaps her marriage was on the rocks.

Jules betrayed Sarah and for most of the novel, I was on Sarah’s side of this, but as the story went on and small things and secrets came out, I felt that though there had been betrayal, Richard was the one I disliked the most. Jules has an adorable daughter, Della who was an important part of this story.

There are many themes covered in this story, but one of the important ones is Jules’ diagnosis of breast cancer. The struggles of the treatment and the issue of being away from home due to where she lived, are ones women face every day, and I thought this was all handled very well.

There is a nice slice of romance in the novel, Noah, a locum police officer on the island, was just lovely and I enjoyed the relationship that formed between Noah and Sarah and was hoping there would be some way they could make things work seeing as they both came from different states and were only on the island for a short time period.

This was a really enjoyable read, culminating in a satisfying ending.

Thanks to NetGalley and Harlequin Australia for a digital copy of this novel in return for an honest review.

 

#AWW2020   31/50