Audiobook Review: Hunting Prince Dracula


Author: Kerri Maniscalco

Series: Stalking Jack the Ripper #2

Format: Audiobook

Length: 11 hours & 58 minutes

Rating: 4.5/5

Summary: 

Following the grief and horror of her discovery of Jack the Ripper’s true identity, Audrey Rose Wadsworth has no choice but to flee London and its memories. Together with the arrogant yet charming Thomas Cresswell, she journeys to the dark heart of Romania, home to one of Europe’s best schools of forensic medicine…and to another notorious killer, Vlad the Impaler, whose thirst for blood became legend.

But her life’s dream is soon tainted by blood-soaked discoveries in the halls of the school’s forbidding castle, and Audrey Rose is compelled to investigate the strangely familiar murders. What she finds brings all her terrifying fears to life once again.

FIRST OFF:

It’s taken me forever to actually write this and not make it random. Also SPOLIERS ahead because second book and I need to get this all out.

This book has the same issue as the last book where some parts dragged on. Also the names of the new characters where close sounding to each other that I sometimes forgot whose who. That however didn’t take away from how this book broke me and put me back together all the same.

Let me explain by reviewing or ramble about the book:

This leads off right after the ending of the first book where we have our two favorite characters Audrey Rose and Thomas heading for Romania. Since this book is following right behind the first book we see Audrey Rose dealing with how it ended, and she’s not doing that well. We don’t get the girl who refused to be put in a box and follow what society wants from her. Now she is deeply depressed and seeing things that are not there. It was so hard to see Audrey this way because in the first book she was so strong and though she still showed the pain was still there. Especially since she was in a another country going to a all men school, learning a profession that is for men, and knowing no one but Thomas.

And poor Thomas Cresswell. He was with Audrey Rose and knew everything that happened in London, and yet how smart he is put his foot in mouth more than once. I understand that he wants to protect Audrey Rose from being in a school that didn’t want her. However he forgets that though she is grieving she is still strongly independent. So instead being helpful he instead makes Audrey Rose mad for embarrassing her.

MYSTERY:

Again like in Stalking Jack the Ripper there is a murder spree happening that Audrey Rose and Thomas want to get involved in yet no one wants to let them. And yes the killer was a bit predictable, but the way to the reveal was interesting. Especially since there was puzzles involved and whole lot of fun detective work. Also I felt like their lives were more in danger this time around, and had me worry about my babies.

ROMANCE:

The romance was heartbreaking at times, because what do you get when put two hardheaded independent people together. Plenty of misunderstanding, and Thomas keep putting his foot into his mouth and just seemed to make things worse. Though for most what he did would seem very loving of him Thomas forgets that Audrey Rose is to independent and will not see it that way. Which caused friction between them for most of the story. However I believe they needed this, and they grew from it making them a better couple. That ending attest to that for sure and makes me more excited to see what the next book has instore with that.

THE AUDIOBOOK:

I love listening to this book because Nicola Barber does a beautiful job telling the story smoothly and helping with all the slow part seem more interesting. She did each voice very well as she did in the first and how she continues on with the third book. Even though the book was 11 hrs. and 58 mins. I read this in one sitting because Audrey Rose and Thomas remind me so much the two main characters of the show Castle.

WRAPPING THIS UP:

So as you can tell by my rambles to this book I loved it and just think it gets better as the books go. Kerri Maniscalo is doing a really good job with her historical retellings that keeps me addicted with her worlds and her characters.

Audiobooks Review: The Hazel Woods//descent story until the end


Title: The Hazel Woods

Arthur:Melissa Albert

Rating:3/5 stars

Format:Audiobook

Narrator:Rebecca Soler

Length:10/30

Summary: Alice and her mother have always traveled around trying to escape the bad luck that always seemed to follow them. That was until they get word that Alice’s grandmother who Alice has never meet. Who she only know is her mother wants to keep her away from her and that she’s a famous author. They believe their safe until one day Alice’s mother is taken and with the help of a fellow classmate try to follow her mother’s trail which leads to the one place her mother never wanted Alice to go. The Hazel Woods.

MY THOUGHTS:

This would have been such a 4 stars for though I didn’t really like Alice but enjoyed the secondary characters. Also though the story was a bit slow I still really enjoyed how the story went and seen the twist but could get behind it. Even all that it would still be a 4 stars read, until the ending.

The secondary characters are what makes this book, because Alice is annoying. How she was hot and cold so fast and was just a brat for the most part. Yes her mother was missing, yet don’t be a bully to the person that is trying to help you. Flinch is the rich popular boy who isn’t shown any attention at home, so the magically world of the Hinterland is such a wonderland for him. Which is why he started helping the granddaughter of his favorite book.

Again I don’t want to spoil the ending, but I cannot get over how the author decided to write it. There was some build up and it just crashed and I couldn’t help but be upset. Something I didn’t realize is that this book is book one and I don’t know how Melissa is going to continue on with this story. Just hoping that the next book isn’t Alice, but maybe another of the characters of the Hinterland. That I would totally read.

Lastly the audiobook was really good and Rebecca Soler made the story very fairytale like which made the slow bits not that hard to get through. Which if you ever heard her do the Lunar Chronicles series know how smooth she makes story telling.

Audiobook Review: The Shadow Cipher


Author: Laura Ruby

Series: York#1

Format: audiobook

narrator: Andy Verner

Length: 10/14

Summary: it was 1798 when the Morningstarr twins arrived in New York with a vision for a magnificent city: towering skyscrapers, dazzling machines, and winding train lines, all running on technology no one had ever seen before. Fifty-seven years later, the enigmatic architects disappeared, leaving behind for the people of New York the Old York Cipher—a puzzle laid into the shining city they constructed, at the end of which was promised a treasure beyond all imagining. By the present day, however, the puzzle has never been solved, and the greatest mystery of the modern world is little more than a tourist attraction.

Tess and Theo Biedermann and their friend Jaime Cruz live in a Morningstarr apartment house—until a real estate developer announces that the city has agreed to sell him the five remaining Morningstarr buildings. Their likely destruction means the end of a dream long-held by the people of New York. And if Tess, Theo and Jaime want to save their home, they have to prove that the Old York Cipher is real. Which means they have to solve it.

My Thoughts:

This was a sweet mystery about three children who want to try and save there apartment. And so Tess, Theo, Jamie, and a big cat go around New York looking for answers. Where no 7th graders should go alone but hey this is there city so who knows.

This book was told in each of the children POV which was easy to get because it was changed for each chapter. The narrator was done by Adam Verner and he did a wonderful job putting a difference between each voice. For a 10 hour audio this one went fast and kept me interested the whole time.
I loved how they each had a role to play, Jamie drew out when they found a new thing. While Theo was the textbook giving the history. And Tess she is also very smart, but also can lie the best out of the three of them. Also the friendship is sweet for they all are fighting for a common cause and that’s so no one would leave the only home they know. Plus the twins have a giant cat who is everything. She goes along with most of there adventure. She keeps Tess calm and scare off baddies what’s not to love.
Where the puzzles took them was basically all around New York from the Statue of Liberty, to visit Alexander Hamilton, to get on crazy trains, and even go under ground. There was plenty twist and turns some obvious, but there was plenty of them to keep me going into the end.

Alas cliffhangers are not fun, because that ending makes me want the next book which isn’t until next year.

 

Audiobook: RoomHate


Author: Penelope Ward

Series: n/a

Format: audible

Narrator: Zoe McKay

Length: 9h/3m

Rating: 5/5

Summary: Amelia and Justin where childhood best friends until a misunderstanding made her leave him behind. That was until Amelia’s grandmother passed away and left her house to both of them. And now have to spend the summer with the boy she left behind along with his girlfriend. Awkward.

My Thoughts:

And it kept going and I couldn’t stop listening and so finished it in a day.

Justin though was a bastard in the beginning I still loved him because hello bad boys make me just a happy reader. While Amelia just want to talk to Justin to settle there differences and maybe become friends again. However Justin wants nothing to do with her. The battle in the beginning had me pause my audiobook because I couldn’t handle it. Laughter and smiling like a lone makes you have weird looks. Then as they slowly went into friendship mode and the slow burn I lived for.

Let me just say this book had no cheating. I know I was shocked and very happy that Penelope didn’t take that route. Because yes there was some sexual tension and long looks between Justin and Amelia however they respected Jill enough not to act on it. I loved Jill to and would love a spin off for to have a happy ending. Because she became friends with Amelia when Justin was being a bully. So yes for her story and have Justin and Amelia costar.

Another thing I loved the development of this book. It wasn’t just the summer and they reconnected and end there’s no there was more. The setting was cute in the way that the house was on a little island. So small town along with living on the water. This was such a realistic way that a relationship should develop especially with the history they have. It had to go slow and work the way up to more and I got that with this book and was surprised.

The narrator Zoe McKay did a wonderful job at telling the story in both voices. Plus mainly you get the story in Amelia’s voice and in the epilogue you get Justin. Which kind of sucks because there are parts I would have loved read through Justin’s view.

Other than that I loved this story and highly recommend to anyone who loves childhood friends who get a second chance at something more.

Audiobook Review:Kage Trilogy


Titles: Kage, Kage Unleashed, Kage Unmasked

Author: Maris Black

Series: Kage 1-3

Format: audible

Narrator: J.F. Harding

Lengths: 8h 2m/7h 9m/ 5h 28m

Summary: M/M with boxing and a mafia vibe. All three books are about a chance meeting between boxing uprise and want to be reporter and how they try to be in a relationship together.

Black(k)
The 1st book is my favorite for it was the start of the cat and mouse that Jamie and Kage began  playing. Especially how Jamie ended up working for Kage and the craziness that comes with it. I love the start of relationships when its slow and don’t know if this is what they really want. Also if they could be anymore different personality wise that lead to a long summer. 4 stars

Black(ku)
2nd book its more who isnt trying to keep them away from each other. It being Jamies family, or Kage’s uncle. Plus it didnt help that Jamie had to go back to school so they were separate. Which lead to them to trust each other and not what they see or hear. To listen to Kage getting jealous is dangerous to those who threaten I thought it was sweet. 3.5 stars

Black(k3)
3rd book is where the mafia elements come more pronounced. This is where we also see Kage fighting to come to terms with his dark pass and try to get out from his uncles thumb. This was my least favorite of the trilogy because though the beginning was good and the ending was rushed to the happy ending. Plus there was somethings I still needed answers to but didn’t get. 3 stars

I read these through audiobook and J.F. Harding was a good narrator he did a good job. I understood who he was talking through since it did go from both main characters. Plus the stories was quick to get through and was a fun time.

Overall I give this trilogy a 3 stars the first one is my favorite the second meh and the third was rushed. However I did enjoy it and recommend it to those who like boxing/mafia moments and m/m romance.

BR: Rebel of the Sands


Title: Rebel of the Sands
Author: Alwyn Hamilton
Series: The Rebel of the Sands-1
Publisher: Viking Books-2016
Format: Hardback/Audiobook
Page Count: 314/ 9 hrs. 31mins
Narrator: Soneela Nankani
Rating: 4/5

Summary: Mortals rule the desert nation of Miraji, but mythical beasts still roam the wild and remote areas, and rumor has it that somewhere, djinn still perform their magic.  For humans, it’s an unforgiving place, especially if you’re poor, orphaned, or female. 

Amani Al’Hiza is all three.  She’s a gifted gunslinger with perfect aim, but she can’t shoot her way out of Dustwalk, the back-country town where she’s destined to wind up wed or dead.

Then she meets Jin, a rakish foreigner, in a shooting contest, and sees him as the perfect escape route. But though she’s spent years dreaming of leaving Dustwalk, she never imagined she’d gallop away on mythical horse—or that it would take a foreign fugitive to show her the heart of the desert she thought she knew.

PRO’S:
The writing was beautiful. The way that Hamilton describe things just made me want to highlight all the passages. Especially when listening to it because Soneela Nankani has a beautiful storyteller voice that brings the images more real.

The Dev’s Valley ran like a wound deep into the skin of the desert, a shallow river exposed vein at the bottom. -189

This book gripped me from the first because I loved how tough Amani is and how hard she worked to changing her life. She wasn’t going to be like all the other girls in her small town. Amani taught herself how to shoot and raised money to get out of her uncle’s thumb and I have to give her props for that. The smart mouth on Amani and how quick she is with her comments while having a smile on her face. From the first paragraph, I could tell that Amani is going to be a straight up badass and I was right.

“I’m looking for a man.”
“Funny, most men round here are looking for a woman.”-16%

You stole it first. If you hadn’t set such a bad example, maybe I would’ve never stolen your broken compass.”-36%

The humor between Jin and Amani is so adorable. They both are quick with a comment and are sarcastic which I totally get behind.

“You’re too smart to play dumb, Bandit.”
“You’re mistaking my playing dumb for my thinking you’re an idiot for wanting a beat-up compass”-36%

“I don’t mean to worry you and all,” I said, trying to keep my voice calm, “but have you noticed that you’ve been shot?” “Ah.” Looking at him closer now, I could see he was clutching the counter to stay upright. “I’d almost forgotten about that.”-18%

I could predict Jin’s secret so when that was revealed I wasn’t surprise. Jin was supposed to be this mystery who’s that guy type of thing, but it didn’t really work on me. I loved though that he didn’t try to stop Amani from being herself.

However, when Amani twist came I was actual surprised. I probably should have seen it coming, but since I didn’t I had a bit of a shock. Plus, the tag on the cover that says she’ll always be more gunpower than girl. The desert has other plans. Is very true once you read the book.
Disliked:
Something I didn’t like about Amani is her breaking promises. She left her best friend to suffer and promises herself she won’t break another and does it anyway. Which came back to bite her as things like this usually happened. But then when she had the option to leave Jin after he is injured Amani stays with him.

Currently there is no love triangle which is a relief and how it carries onto the second book.
Which because there wasn’t a cliffhanger I can wait a bit before I pick up the next book. Not that I didn’t enjoy the ending, and that there isn’t question I need answered. I just have plenty of books to read currently first.

Audiobook Review: The Graveyard Book


Author: Neil Gaiman

Narrators: Neil Gaiman, Derek Jacobi, Robert Madge, Clare Corbett, Miriam Margoyles, Andrew Scott, Julian Rhind-Tutt

Length: 8 hrs & 24 mins.

Rating: 4/5

Nobody (Bod) Owen  as a toddler has been raised by ghost after his real family was killed. With the killer is still looking for Bod lucky enough he is protected by his guardian Silas.  This book is Bod journey from toddler to 15 and I loved every second of it. pretty much him growing up and showing stages of his childhood that we all faced at one point.

I loved Bod because he loved to learn by any source. It being from books or by stories he’s always eager to listen and learn. He was such a sweet boy who tries to helpful and respectable to those living or dead. To see him grow up and make friends, go to school, get in trouble was just heart warming to see. Also he has a stubborn and fearless side that makes me want to root for him and call him brave.

Silas is a character that I loved for never sugar coating anything when it comes to Bod.  His role in Bod life is to be able to keep the boy feed since he was the only one who could leave the graveyard. Which made me question what exactly Silas was. Because I don’t think he was a ghost, but he’s lived for a long time. Anyway I still loved him and how he let Bod learn from his mistake while being still being close enough to protect him.

I think my favorite part was having a full cast along with music. It was just plan fun to hear everyone have their own voice with ascents and other things to make the sound unique. So I wasn’t confused. Plus usually I don’t like music with audio’s because it sometimes bugs me. However in
this book it was used to transition from end of chapter to the next one. So it actually helped to tell me when the new one begin.

One thing I didn’t like was the Jack and the reason behind Bod’s families death. It just felt like a easy out and no real explanation of who they really were. Also I knew who was who when Jack and Bod meet up after 13 years of hiding. The whole finally lets say battle scene was pretty cool though how Bod used his years in the graveyard to great use.

I still fully enjoyed this book and happy that I finally got to it. If I had to recommend the book or audiobook I have to say audio with the full cast. Because I believe it brings more fun to the story while we reading through Bod’s childhood. Either way if your a fan or just starting with his work I totally think you should give this a try.

Audible Review: One of Us is Lying


Author: Karen M. McMonus

Narrators: Kim Mai Guest, MacLead Andrews, Shannon McManus, Robbie Daymond

Length: 10 hours & 43 minutes

Rating: 5/5

I didn’t expect much of this book for the fact that its set in a high school. However I was totally into this story from start to finish.We have the breakfast club in the year 2017 and instead of a couple hours having fun in the library they have to deal with a murder they were witness to. So Addy, Bronwyn, Nate, Cooper, and Simon are in dentation that none them believe they deserve. During the time the teacher leaves Simon ends up with what seemed liked a accidental death. But, when it comes out that Simon’s death wasn’t accidently and that he had dirt that he was going to spill about the others starts a investigation in all their lives.

When I first heard the premise I had the question how the heck does one person die in dentation and no one knows what happened. Well I got that solved for me  pretty quickly and have to say it was smart way to get it done. Especially if you want to frame the other people in the room.

The other breakfast clubbers I enjoyed especially with each of them getting their own narrators. At first I’ll admit I didn’t know who was who but as the story continued I feel for each character in their own special way. Addy who was pretty much a arm accessory for her jock of a boyfriend grew the most for me. For after all the dirt came out (which of course it did their in high school) Addy went from the top to the bottom real fast. Yes she cried for the lost however she bounced back like a boss, and showed her more independent side. I love how Bronwyn became a little detective, and how she used all her smarts to figure out who really did Simon in. Cooper is the all American good boy who tries to please everyone and I just love how southern he is. I kind of guessed what his secret is and I was more than okay with it. Then we have our bad guy Nate who has a hard life and doesn’t care about much. However as the book process you see that he isn’t as hard as he means himself to be. I think he’s just precious. Each of them grew throughout the book and am glad they didn’t take what was happening laying down.

When you found out the whys and motto I didn’t expect, and the other twist behind everything took me by surprise as well. Though it does make sense for how the character acted. However I never expected that or how it got all wrap up. But I loved it all and so glad how it ended.

Also there is a romance between two of the four which I simply loved through out because it started slow and steady until the end and I loved every minute of it. And can I say I cared for some of the parents, but loved their siblings. For though some of the parents were understanding yet gave them a hard time. The siblings where always supportive of their older sibling.

This is Karen M. McManus debut novel and I will be reading more of her books in the future if she keeps writing like this. So I highly recommend this for young adult reader who like a bit of mystery to there stories. The friendship and sibling love is really big in these book with a dash of a sweet romance. So please read and let me know what you think.

Audible Review: The Deal


Author: Elle Kennedy

Series: off campus-1

Format: audible

Narrators: Lorelei Avalon

Length: 12hrs/56mins

Genre: New Adult

Rating: 5/5

Summary:

Garrett and Hannah started with them both needing  help in an area that the other is better at. Garrett’s being passing a class so he can stay on the hockey team. While Hannah needs help talking to a guy she really likes. Though Hannah is very relentless to add another something on her plate she agrees to go along with it. Which during these study session and binge watching a tv series they started to be a bit more.
I loved how the development in their relationship wasn’t rushed and was realistic in the stuff that happens. Garrett though being a jock was really smart especially when it came to history. All he wants is to play professionally hockey and get out the shadow of his fathers. Hannah on the other hand moved across the states to escape her past and to forget. She is a music major who has to get ready for a showcase were she partnered up with an impossible partner. These two hard headed of course butt heads and bring sarcasm and humor to everything. Which of course just made me laugh more at their antics. Just watching all the back and forth to becoming an actually couples was fun to listen to with popcorn.
The friendship in these was also so good. I loved Garrett’s roommate’s and how they bring in their two cents into everything. Each guy has their role in the house that makes everything work and become the best friends. Seeing all the friends blended with each other so good like it was like that the entire time.

One negative is that their was only one narrator doing the whole thing. Not saying that the narrator was bad but a male voice would have separated everyone out more.

This book was just a lot of fun to listen to for the whole 12 hours and 41 minutes.  Narrator brought a lot to the story that kept me want to listen to what this characters are up to. I will say if you enjoyed the Pucked series by Helena Hunting you will enjoy this book. Because it reminds me of the humor, friendship, my love for hockey, and the relationships themselves so much. Which is probably why I continued with this series right away.