*REVIEW* ~ Commodity, by Shay Savage

#postapocalyptic #scifi #romance #romanticsuspense

Blurb

A woman hunted by human traffickers.
A hot and dangerous bodyguard.
Complete destruction.
The end of civilization.
The beginning of a new form of currency.
Women are now the highest COMMODITY.

My Review ~ 5 stars

Brutal and Love Affirming Post-Apocalyptic Romantic Suspense

Commodity is another phenomenal read from Shay Savage. It’s a brutal yet love affirming romantic suspense set in a post-apocalyptic world. I was previously blown away by her novel Transcendence (click on title for review). I love the author’s voice and one clicked this as soon as I saw it! I’m partial to post-apocalyptic reads – I find it fascinating how they explore what happens to society’s mores once law and order and technology break down. In Commodity only a few women have survived (you will need to read the book to find out why) and as such have become little more than a commodity used in the worst possible way by those who covet power and influence.

Prior to the apocalypse Hannah, the heroine of the tale, was en route to give evidence in a major people trafficking trial, one in which she was the main prosecution witness.  She had been assigned her own protector, Falk, a bodyguard. Falk has his own code of honour and even though circumstances have changed and the world is no longer what it was, he is going to protect this woman come hell or high water. I just LOVED his badass alpha character! Quite how far he will go to protect her and why becomes evident as the story unfolds, Suffice to say I was utterly captivated by the read, their growing relationship and the unfolding danger and suspense. I particularly enjoyed how the author tells the story through the points of view of both the hero and heroine at various points in the narrative.

Their romance is far from instantaneous. Both characters have complex back stories which are revealed to the reader and to each other as. Given Hannah’s past, trust is a major issue and it needs to be earned as the two are thrown ever closer in the inevitable roles of protector and protected. There is a great deal of sexual tension and  some very passionate and heartfelt scenes.  Their relationship is fragile and under constant threat given the situation they find themselves in. Be warned – there are some horrific scenes of violence in the book (some of it sexual) and a number of twists in the tale, including one huge curveball – Shay Savage style!

A super post-apocalyptic read to lose yourself in.

Purchase Links

Amazon UK    Amazon US

Connect with the Author

http://www.shaysavage.com/

https://www.facebook.com/ShaySavage7289

**ARC REVIEW** ~ November Rain (Bad Bloods #1), Shannon A Thompson

Young Adult

#dystopian, #urbanfantasy #scifi #paranormal

Bad

Book Blurb

Seventeen-year-old Serena isn’t human. She is a bad blood, and in the city of Vendona, bad bloods are executed. In the last moments before she faces imminent death, a prison guard aids her escape and sparks a revolt. Back on the streets determined to destroy her kind, Serena is spared by a fellow bad blood named Daniel. His past tragedies are as equally mysterious as her connection to them.

Unbeknownst to the two, this connection is the key to winning the election for bad bloods’ rights to be seen as human again. But Serena is the only one who can secure Vendona’s vote. Now, Daniel must unite with her before all hope is lost and bad bloods are eradicated, even if it means exposing secrets worse than death itself. United or not, a city will fight, rain will fall, and all will be threatened by star-crossed love and political corruption.

My Review ~ 5 stars

Dark and Insightful Dystopian read

November Rain is the first instalment in the Bad Bloods series, available for pre-order, alongside November Snow the next book in the series. It is a real treat to read –fast-paced, character driven and eerily prescient. Originally conceived by author Shannon A Thompson over a decade ago, it has now been re-released by Clean Teen Publishing.

The story is set in a world where the divisions between those in power and those who are reviled by the status quo are chilling and stark. This future dystopia echoes current world events where we are witnessing many societies becoming more and more fearful and intolerant of those who are different and where there is talk of walls, both physical and metaphorical being put up to keep people apart. The story is told through the eyes of young adults and children and I feel that the issues raised are all the more poignant for it.

Serena the heroine, a bad blood, condemned to death by the authorities, escapes her fate after being unexpectedly freed by a prison guard. Exhausted and injured she is on the run and is saved and healed by Daniel, a fellow bad blood who is leader of a rival ‘flock’ (a group of bad bloods who join together for survival). As the plot unfolds we learn that Serena and Daniel are linked in some way and that Serena has a pivotal role to play in ensuring that the result of the impending election is favourable to her kind, giving them a place in human society, rather than them being exterminated.

There is no love lost between Robert, the leader of Serena’s flock and Daniel. The two have a history, although neither the reader nor Serena is privy to the details. Both Serena and Daniel know that pursuing their friendship will undoubtedly lead to a confrontation, but nevertheless they are drawn to one another. Daniel and others know that Serena and her powers are special in some way. What is her role in safeguarding the future of the bad bloods at this crucial time of an impending election which pits those who would protect her kind against those who hanker after their destruction? Is she up to the challenge? Who will survive the approaching storm? Not all of these questions will be answered. Indeed, there is plenty of suspense and the scene is set for more revelations and plot twists in book #2 which I am impatient to read!

I am familiar with the work of Shannon A Thompson and she is an immensely talented writer. She does a fantastic job of painting the picture of the dystopian society which her characters inhabit. It is a world where the bad bloods, those who possess unpredictable and special abilities, are feared and persecuted. It is chilling in parts, often hinting at horrors, rather than describing them in detail. It is a reminder of how societies can sometimes turn against others, perceiving them as a threat purely on the basis of them being different. I was reminded of events from history such as the witch trails and the Holocaust, not to mention contemporary events surrounding the modern day diaspora of those from war torn countries which has resulted in the pressure of immigration on other nations, which  some are fearful of.

A top read for readers of Young Adult fiction and/or for those who are seeking a thought provoking read.

Reviewed by Tina Williams

Please note, an ARC of this book was given to me by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Purchase Links

Amazon US  Amazon UK

Connect with the Author

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6880615.Shannon_A_Thompson

https://shannonathompson.com/

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorShannonAThompson/

Review Round-up Feb ’16

Hi readers, we hope you all found something exciting to do with your extra day in February. We have been looking forward to the beginning of Spring, even though I did actually wake up to a coating of snow this morning!

We have just celebrated Mother’s Day here in the UK, and whilst I didn’t receive a book myself, I did have some chocolates to share (or not to share!) whilst enjoying Alan Jones‘ thriller BLOQ, to be released on April 1st. I do hope you all had a good day. Feel free to share your weekend reads with us in the comments below 🙂

Although a leap year, Feb is always still short and therefore we have a smaller review list. That said we still have a range of genres for you to choose from, whether it be a Young Adult post-apocalyptic, sci-fi fantasy action/adventure horror in Mark King‘s Daniel Jones series, historical romance in Sinful Possession by Samantha Holt, or a futuristic sci-fi paranormal in Em Taylor‘s Discovered. There is also a contemporary, military romance with C.J. Pinard‘s new series prequel, Antihero novella and a hot erotic read in Love Yoga by Serge de Moliere, plus more.

As always, please click on the title and author to read our full review post!

Thanks for following. Your views, likes and comments are always appreciated. Have a great month!

Caroline & Tina ❤

The Iron WebDiscovery (The Iron Web #1) by Kristin Ravelle, NA dystopian (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Penrith, Wales. Bryn is turning 22 and must register for One Earth Dynamic ID.

Buried in the mysterious N800 texts is a horrifying secret, an ancient evil that Bryn feels compelled to unearth. A secret that may underpin One Earth, the global agency that monitors and tracks everyone.

Curran, gorgeous, tortured OED fugitive, finds sanctuary with Penrith’s underground, Luxent, and discovers Bryn and her strange ability to throw condensed light. And unexpected love in a world suddenly seeming to go mad.

Can Bryn’s primeval earth magic help Luxent overcome other-worldly forces and the OED or will her growing feelings for Curran and learning the horrifying reality of the OED only lead down the road that goes straight into its ancient and evil web? 

***

Discovery is book I in the Iron Web series. Immortelle, Book II, finds Bryn and Curran on the run from One Earth to the mythological Dinas Affaraon. If they find Dinas in the Snowdonia mountains, they may learn new ways of fighting the OED.

AntiheroAntihero (Imperfect Heroes prequel) by C.J. Pinard, contemporary military romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: Can a street punk on the wrong path be transformed into a Special Forces killing machine? Once he’s been “rehabilitated”, Ellis Anderson is determined to show the woman he loves that he’s nothing like both the lives he’s left behind. But actions speak louder than words – and he has a lot of work ahead of him.

sinful possessionSinful Possession (Cynfell Brothers #5) by Samantha Holt, historical romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy and pride. The Cynfell brothers are the very embodiment of a sinful existence. But could the right woman change that?

Sloth

Miss Lila Radley was set to be the belle of the ball this summer. With her charming manners, beautiful looks and excellent connections, everyone anticipated her receiving endless proposals.

However, no one expected her to be kidnapped.

After she witnesses a murder, Lila finds herself in the hands of two overwhelmingly attractive brothers—entirely against her will. However, while the twin Cynfell brothers might be as devastating in looks as each other, only one intrigues her—the brooding Lord Ash Cynfell.

Unfortunately, he is the very reason she is in danger.

Already battling with his own demons, Ash finds himself with an additional burden to bear—Miss Lila Radley’s safety. He cannot very well abandon her as it was due to his inaction that a man ended up dead and a serial killer is now targeting her. Unfortunately, keeping the vivacious Lila protected until the murderer is found is going to test him in every way possible.

Can he resist her charm and beauty, aware a worthless man like himself is no good for a woman like her? All he knows is that when Lila turns her sunny smile onto his twin brother, his finds himself unable to summon his usual relaxed attitude. Has Ash Cynfell, the most reclusive brother, finally found something worth fighting for?

LachlanDiscovered (The Forsaken Blood series #1) by Em Taylor, futuristic, sci-fi paranormal romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Edinburgh is a city that’s slow to change. Which is why in 2061, Professor Lachlan Mackenzie still lives there. He hasn’t changed in the 1000 years since he and his shipmates abandoned ship, forsaken by the Vampyras millions of light years away and left to fend for themselves, feeding off the blood of humans.

Lachlan is drawn to sexy psychologist Kate the moment he steps into her office. He wants to protect her and help her overcome her PTSD. Ignoring the warning signs of his growing attraction he agrees to be her cabin mate on the journey to the new colony on Mars. But when Kate discovers him feeding on bagged blood, all hell breaks loose. Has he been set up by the Vampyr council leader? Will Kate ever forgive his lies? And how does he explain what he is to his long lost daughter who he meets on their journey?

As Kate starts to trust, outside forces threaten to rip them apart. Will Lachlan lose the only woman he’s ever truly bonded with?

HuntHunt for the Enemy (The Enemy series #3) by Rob Sinclair, international suspense thriller (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: The breathtaking and action-packed finale to the bestselling Enemy series. The Hunt is on. They’ve erased his past. Wiped out his very existence. But Carl Logan isn’t finished yet. On the run in a harsh Russian winter, Logan – once an invaluable asset but now branded a traitor – has been framed for murder. His own firm, the secretive Joint Intelligence Agency, have labelled him a rogue operative after two decades of loyal service. The agency is hunting him down… and they’re not the only ones. But there’s much more at stake than just Logan’s life. One by one, agents and informants from all sides, all allegiances, are dying. And Carl Logan is the only man who can put a stop to it, once and for all.

Love YogaLove Yoga by Serge de Moliere, erotic romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Morgan Love is one of the few African American yoga instructors in town. After her studies in India with the legendary Swami Monda, students flock to her classes. But without her own studio, money remains tight, and her personal life is a wreck after the last man in her life cheated on her.

When an attractive man enters her yoga studio, Morgan is instantly drawn to him. When she discovers the attraction is mutual, things quickly escalate, taking a dramatic and passionate turn. Eli is like no other man she’s ever met, and that includes his incredible sexual prowess.

But when Morgan’s past comes back to haunt her, she finds herself forced to turn to Eli. Are her hopes and dreams safe with this seemingly too-perfect man? Or will Morgan end up once again as a man’s sex toy?

Frenzy & Doom (A Daniel Jones Story #1 & 2) by Mark King, YA dystopian/post-apocalyptic action/adventure, fantasy horror (reviewed by Caroline)

Frenzy 3 v2Frenzy (book 1) blurb: Daniel leads a peaceful life with his family until he finds out a repulsive secret about the Over-seers, the ‘saviours of humanity’, and his security is blown to smithereens. He enters a world where death is the only certainty and quickly learns to kill – or be killed.

Enter Gwendolyn, with the charm of a snake and a bite that’s twice as dangerous. People skills aren’t her thing but she knows how to survive in a post-apocalyptic world; she’s a hotshot with a bow and arrow and can rustle up a mean rat soup.

Mary is the only person left alive over forty. She’s not too good at fighting but she knows where to find the one thing that could save their lives. Only Mary can remember life before the invasion, before humanity was brainwashed into following the procedures.

Pursued by the Over-seers, the Triclops and the barbaric hunters, can the three brave rebels triumph in their quest for survival? The odds are stacked against them – hold tight for a white-knuckle ride through a landscape of devastation!

Daniel Jones Doom Cover LargeDoom (book 2) blurb: Daniel’s peaceful life has been destroyed after discovering the hideous truth about the Over-seers – the new masters of humanity. Hiding in centuries-old flint mines from Hunters and from the terrifying Triclops machines, Daniel’s recurring nightmares lead him, once more, into danger. With mankind brainwashed under the false hope of a glorious new life in the Achievement Centre, he must return home through a devastated landscape to save his father
from certain death.

Daniel reunites with two fellow fugitives – Mary and her young companion Gwendolyn – to undertake a rescue mission so dangerous that death is the only guarantee. Is it too late for Daniel’s family or is it too late for humanity itself? Daniel Jones DOOM, the exciting new sequel to FRENZY a Daniel Jones Story, is another fast-paced, engrossing chronicle of three rebels who once again risk their lives in a vividly depicted world peopled by memorable new and known characters.

Zombie Takeover to celebrate ~ *Love At The End of Days* by Tera Shanley (includes super giveaway)

Halloween Takeover

Check out some Ghostly Goodness!

Zombie Baner

Week Two: Ghosty Goodness : Win Books by Sarah Glover and Rumer Haven!

SHRIEK! It’s Week Two of our month long Halloween takeover to celebrate Love At The End of Days by Tera Shanley, and this week we have books to win with hot rockers, 1920’s razzle dazzle, and of course, GHOSTS! Check out the Rafflecopter and enter to win!

If you could be haunted by a ghost from any era, what would it be? 1940s? Renaissance times? A modern ghost who haunts your texts?

Don’t forget to add Love At The End Of Days to your TBR: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23157764-love-at-the-end-of-days
and check back every week for new, spooky good prizes!

Tera Shanley

New Rafflecopter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

Zombie Takeover *Guest Post by Author Tera Shanley* ~ includes giveaway!

Ghostly Goodness!

A big welcome to Tera Shanley who wants to find out about what your fave ghost movie is. Tera has a fair few suggestions of her own but is VERY interested in what you think. and has set up a poll to find out. I haven’t managed to get the voting buttons to work yet, but while I’m trying to put this to rights do tell us your favourite in the comments.

You can also enter the giveaway to win $5 Amazon Gift Card, Ebooks: Seven for a Secret by Rumer Haven, Grave Refrain by Sarah Glover, and Love In The Time of The Dead by Tera Shanley.  Good luck! Tina and Caroline 🙂

Zombie Baner

Poll: Best Ghost Movie

Hello, hello! In preparation for Halloween and the release of book two in the Dead Rapture saga, Love at the End of Days, this week’s theme is Ghosty Goodness.  Every October, I have a list of the same movies I like to watch before Halloween. It’s become a tradition for my family. I’ve included my favorite ghost movie in the poll, but I’m a curious little zombie. What’s your favorite?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23157764-love-at-the-end-of-days

 

What is your favorite ghost movie?

Ghostbusters

Beetlejuice

Ghost

The Others

The Sixth Sense

Paranormal Activity

Poltergeist

The Ring

The Grudge

Silent Hill

pollcode.com free polls

Zombie Takeover *Guest Post by Author Tera Shanley* ~ includes giveaway!

Zombie Baner

Today we extend a huge welcome to author Tera Shanley who, as part of her Zombielicious Takeover, is giving us valuable insider info on Vanessa Summers, the heroine of Tera’s upcoming Zombie themed romance, Love At The End of Days. A copy of the first book in this series Love in the Time of the Dead, an Amazon gift card and some super witches and angel themed prizes are up for grabs through the rafflecopter link. Tina and Caroline 🙂

Six Facts about Vanessa Summers

Release day is upon us for book two in the Dead Rapture series, Love at the End of Days, and to celebrate, I wanted to give you a closer look at the heroine of this book, Vanessa Summers. She’s a tough-talking, knife-wielding bad mamma jamma who is only afraid of Deads and getting her heart broken. And though she was introduced in book one, you’ll get to see her work through some of the grit that comes with being a zombie apocalypse survivor in this book.

Hard on the Outside, Soft on the Inside

Vanessa is mouthy and sarcastic, but once someone wiggles into her heart, they are there to stay and she will be a fierce and loyal friend.

Secret Crush

A year ago, the man she had a fling with left Dead Run River with her arch nemesis, and she’s taken all this time trying to get over him. He was the first man she allowed herself feelings for after the Dead outbreak, and when he blows back into her colony, she has to do some quick thinking to sever her heartstrings to the man who rejected her. But Sean Daniels, second-in-command at her colony, with his sexy eyes and undiluted attention make it a lot easier to move on.

Devoted Sister

She was responsible for getting her little brother, Nelson, out of the city alive when the Dead outbreak occurred. Weeks on the run with the constant fear for her brother’s safety made her afraid to allow anyone else into her heart. Her brother’s safety comes first, before anything else, and when he starts asserting his independence as he grows up, she has a hard time learning to let him go.

Not a Laney Fan

Laney Landry got the man she started having feelings for last year, everyone hails her as the reason for the possible vaccine that could save the human race, and even Vanessa’s brother, Nelson, has a huge crush on Laney. Vanessa is not amused, and when Laney comes back to Dead Run River, she must figure out how to deal with the emotional upheaval her return causes. But through the course of the book, and through their trials together, it is hard for Vanessa to continue disliking Laney.

Skilled with Knives

No one practices knife throwing as much as Vanessa. She’s dedicated, practicing her dead-eye aim at targets on a daily basis, and is determined that if she is ever in a scuffle with a Dead, she will be the victor by blade. Several knives accompany her at all times in the belt of her standard issue cargo pants.

Guard in Training

Vanessa had a bad experience with a Dead last year when she and her brother were caught unaware between colony gates. She was helpless, and frozen, just watching the monster come for she and her brother, and it broke something inside of her. She has grown an overwhelming fear of Deads. To rid herself of that reserve, she’s thrown herself headfirst into guard training, so she can get her stronger self back.

And oh, this girl gets tough and at the same time vulnerable in such a cool way. She was so fun to write!

 Goodreads link:

Giveaway

Click on the link to win$5 Amazon Gift Card, Book One in the Dead Rapture Series, and eBooks by Cherie Colyer, Lisa Sanchez, Carol Oates Kate Evangelista, Trish Wolfe.

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**REVIEW & Kindle e-book GIVEAWAY** Here Lies Love by Dan Thompson

Here Lies Love

A Reader’s Review Blog are excited to host our review and fantastic giveaway of Dan Thompson’s New Adult Dystopian ‘Here Lies Love’! Be warned – there are some dark and adult topics and therefore, it is not one for the faint-hearted!! (Please scroll down for details of the e-book giveaway!)

Blurb: Would death be less painful than life?

When she is sold by her father, Abbey discovers that nightmares can occur when you’re awake. Trapped inside a wooden cage, Abbey is forced to listen to the horrors and atrocities above; time ticking down until it is her turn. But Abbey isn’t prepared to become a victim; she will escape.

Although, what Abbey isn’t prepared for, is how harsh and unfair the world can be. With the sun turning its back on humanity long ago, life gives no opportunity. The only thing Abbey can do is learn to survive. To exist. And that means stealing any opportunity that comes her way. Haunted by the unpleasant memories bestowed upon her only nurtures Abbey’s paranoia, until she realises that to truly live in the world, she must confront the person who was responsible for her misfortune – her father.

Here Lies Love is a New Adult tale of actuality, of facing up to the fact that love comes in many guises. Can Abbey find the one glimmer of hope or will she be overcome with the darkness of revenge?

REVIEW

Wow! There are some very dark topics in this New Adult dystopian, Here Lies Love, and it is definitely not for the faint hearted! Not only is it one of the darkest novels I have read for some time, being set in an end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it survival narrative but it also deals with captivity, violence and sexual abuse, where the victim considers suicide as it may be preferable to carrying on. There is also the presence of betrayal and loneliness surrounding the main character, Abbey. Be prepared for an intense, emotive adventure, where the reader truly cannot predict what will happen on the following page, let alone at the end of the story!!!

The reader is introduced to Abbey at a time when the sun hasn’t shone in the sky for many years. The human race is barely surviving and Abbey has been sent away by her father to live with Stefan, a man who offered Abbey a chance of minor housework to earn her keep and food. Little did Abbey know that she would be under lock and key and only taken out when Stefan, the monster, wanted to play. Abbey not only has to live with the fear of what this guy will do to her, but she can hear the screams of other girls. She cannot let him carry on doing this to her.

The reader feels every sense of terror, anxiety and tension, longing for Abbey and the others to escape. This story takes you places that you would not really want to venture to from the beginning. However, by doing this the reader is hooked on hoping for Abbey to make it out. For a New Adult novel, Dan Thompson writes so carefully, explaining the depths of desperation that Abbey is at, allowing every moment to be clear to the reader without being completely graphic as a more mature read could be. This shows a level of sensitivity and the author helps create the horrific scene with atmospheric descriptions just as much as the abusive situation in which Abbey is in.

Abbey’s emotions towards her father are mixed. She was close to him and her gran when she was younger but she cannot understand how her father could just give her away to a monster like Stefan. Abbey feels angry and betrayed by her father. She wants answers and he is the only one that holds them. Her father and her home at the lighthouse are all she knows and so her objective is to face her father to find his truth and possibly seek revenge.

Here Lies Love also keeps the reader on their toes just as much as Abbey is. I find dystopians in general are dark reads and concentrate on surviving, and this is no different in many ways. There is a lack of trust in people, the need for food and warmth, etc, but Abbey is also struggling with the coming of age at the same time as having her innocence robbed and then to top it all off she falls for another survivor of the apocalypse in Tristan.

Meeting Tristan, although careful and cautious of him at first, provides Abbey with a certain feeling of affection that she has long forgotten. She has only had to think and care for herself, and now meeting Tristan and his best friend, Ryan, she begins to feel connected with people again, if just a little. However, due to her young age and trying to deal with what has happened to her makes it very easy for Abbey to become paranoid and concerned about the true intentions of Tristan and Ryan. The reader does question, ‘Is there hope for Abbey’s future?’

Towards the end of the novel the answer to that question is still one for the reader to possibly judge for themselves. And where does it leave Tristan? I want to know so much more about these characters and, although the story is pretty well wrapped, I would still like to follow these characters into a sequel to find out exactly what becomes of both of them and whether or not they are together? Despite the seriousness, darkness and sheer desperation that Abbey felt, I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. If you are a dystopian fan and enjoy a dark read this is definitely one for you!!

A copy of Here Lies Love was provided by the author in return for an honest and fair review.

GIVEAWAY

For a chance to win an e-book (mobi version for Amazon Kindle) of Here Lies Love all we ask is for you to leave your name and/or a comment in the comments box below before Monday 29th September 2014.

Alternatively, you can leave a comment on our Facebook page post at www.facebook.com/AReadersReview before the closing date, Monday 29th September 2014!

The winner will be randomly selected and notified as soon as they are selected.

Good luck to all those who enter. We wish you every success!!

Caroline & Tina 🙂

And if you are unlucky, or simply cannot wait then here are the purchase links:-

Here Lies Love is available at Amazon UK and Amazon US.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker