Tag Archives: book reviews

Review of Brightblade (The Morgan Detective Agency #1), by Michael Suttkus & C. T. Phipps

I received a free audible code for a copy of Brightblade, by Michael Suttkus and C.T. Phipps.

Description from Goodreads:

Psychic. Superhero. Spy. Detective. Bounty Hunter. Ashley Morgan has been many things and failed at all of them. The twenty-eight-year old has her whole life ahead of her but has already resigned herself to working a dead end job bringing in the debt-ridden supernatural criminals of New Detroit. A chance encounter with the vampire sheriff reveals a secret that motivates her to change her life forever: her long-missing brother Arthur is alive (in a manner of speaking). 

Ashley sets out on a quest to not only find him but also deal with old lovers, treacherous criminals, a magic sword, and a quest to raise an ancient vampire from the dead. 

Review:

I thought this was ok, but over the top. I honestly think some readers will love it. It’s chocked full of pop culture, geek references. So, anyone who really loves that will love this book. But, while I appreciate a little geekery in my books, there was just too much for me. Similarly, I think there was too much crammed into this plot—secret psychic spy schools, gods, angelic swords, lost siblings, sorcery, men in black, strippers/prostitutes, monsters, weres, vampires, etc. etc. etc. I don’t feel like it allowed any aspect of the plot to develop fully.

I did like the characters and I loved that there was some casual queerness, racial diversity, a hero will autism, and a mild exploration of personal bias/racism (in regards to vampires, but I felt that was just a proxy).

All in all, not bad, but better suited to a different, maybe younger (though not too young, re strippers/prostitutes referenced above), reader.

Review of The Dragon’s Psychic (Immortal Dragon #1), by Linzi Baxter

I received a free audible code for a copy of Linzi Baxter‘s The Dragon’s Psychic.

Description from Goodreads:

She was supposed to be just a job. A paycheck. Now she’s his destiny.

Talia hadn’t planned on dying today. Accidentally defying the supernatural council wasn’t exactly her plan either. But when she did her duty and touched a bloody knife to determine guilt or innocence, her vision seemed… off. So was Councilman Gideon’s rush to declare a shivering child guilty of murder. Now Talia’s trying to lose herself in the West Virginia mountains with the child in tow, and the mercenary on their tail has an uncanny ability to find them, no matter how far they run. 

Kirin’s dragon-shifter senses make him the most sought-after mercenary in these parts. But something about this job smells wrong. And when he finally lays his hands on the fugitive, he gets the surprise of his three-hundred-year life. The fragile, determined woman in his arms is his mate, who he’d given up all hope of finding. 

His mercenary target has become his chosen partner, and instead of breathing down her neck, he’s bound to protect her at all costs. But if Kirin and Talia can’t figure out who wants this child dead—and why—they could all wind up sharing the same grave. 

Review:

This was what it was. I didn’t find anything especially impressive about it, but I also didn’t think it a bad version of a basic dragon shifter-find-his-mate story. I liked the characters and thought the inclusion of a child interesting. However, I also thought the child got over losing her parents too easily and the conclusion was too swift (rushed). The narrators did a fine job and I’d be willing to both read another Baxter book and listen to another of Costa and Kafer’s readings.

Review of A Wallflower’s Folly, by Amanda Mariel

I received an Audible code for a copy of Amanda Mariel‘s A Wallflower’s Folly.

Description from Goodreads:

A headstrong wallflower… 

Lady Olivia Montague’s betrothed has ignored her and their contract for years. In the meantime, she has decided to remain unwed, embracing the life of a spinster. The last thing she expects is for her betrothed to come storming back into her life. 

A Determined Duke… 

Following the death of his parents, William Breckenridge finds himself as the Duke of Thorne and in charge of his three younger sisters. He needs help in the form of a mother and guide for his siblings. Lucky for William, he’s already betrothed. All he need do is collect his future duchess. 

An unstoppable love… 

William and Olivia engage in a battle of wills, but the more she resists and he pursues, the more their passions flare. Once the heart is engaged, resistance becomes difficult, but will they give into happily ever after?

Review:

This book and I had problems, the most grievous of which was the fact that I was indignant on Olivia’s behalf for the entire book. Their marriage was arranged when they were children. Then, he disappeared for 15 years without so much as a word. But when he needed a woman to do womanly things in his life, he showed up—a perfect stranger—to take the tool off the shelf and demands she honor the agreement (because she’s convenient). Until that point he hadn’t honored it, but despite her protests that she did not wish to marry him, he demanded she would. 

Given these circumstances I was even more indignant that he liked and was attracted to her. He got to ignore her for as long as he liked (injuring her in the process) and then gets a pretty and amusing wife out of the deal. While she got ignored and then forced into a marriage she didn’t want. Oh, how men always get their cake and to eat it too, while women eat crow, apparently. The fact that she gave in as soon as he said the magic three words enraged me further still, if you’d believe that possible. As if all it takes to make a woman who doesn’t desire marriage desirous of it is to be chosen by a man. Seriously, fuck off. 

Also, the whole premise of the book is how long the Duke ‘left her on the shelf’ before coming to claim her (and she’s meant to mother a 19 and 20-year-old.) So, she must be above average age for a marriageable woman. Yet, neither of her BFFS appear to be married either and she acts like a complete child. 

Lastly, a comment on the editing/narration. Since I had an audio copy, I don’t know where the errors originated (from the author or the narrator), but there were several misused words/grammar errors. And while as an American I’m no expert on English accents, I rather suspect this narrator’s accent (with her Vs for Th, for example) did not even approximate an aristocratic English accent. Rather like hearing a book set in the Bronx read in a Southern accent, for us Americans. Not bad, but a little jarringly out of place. Presumably more so for those from that part of the world.

I’d likely give this author another chance. But this book was a bust.