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MY ONE TRUE HIGHLANDER By Suzanne Enoch

IMG_0871     MY ONE TRUE HIGHLANDER By Suzanne Enoch

My One True Highlander by Suzanne Enoch is the second instalment in the “No Ordinary Hero” series, but can easily be read as a stand-alone novel. I didn’t read the first novel and it didn’t affect this storyline at all.

After Lattimer, a mere soldier, unexpectedly inherited the dukedom and became the new Duke of Lattimer, he generously gave his sister Marjorie (Ree) the London townhouse, and she has been desperately trying to fit in with the ton and failing miserably even with the help of her hired companion Mrs. Hortensia Giswell. The transition from being trained as a lady’s companion to becoming a Lady however, has proved to be a difficult one. When her brother writes that he is going to marry, Majorie impulsively decides to attend his wedding and sets off for Scotland without sending word of her impending visit. Marjorie needs a much needed break from her companions and ignores Mrs. Giswell’s words of wisdom and sets off on a walk–alone. Lo and behold, she is kidnapped by Highlanders.

Viscount Graeme Maxton is a chieftain of the Maxwell clan and his property borders that of Duke Gabriel Lattimer’s land, his sworn enemy. When Graeme’s three younger brothers kidnap Lattimer’s sister Lady Marjorie Forrester thinking to help Graeme – he is torn. He can’t afford to turn her over to the Duke at the cost of his brothers’ freedom, but neither can he let her go.

This novel is a witty, lighthearted story with likeable characters that will draw you in, and evoke an array of emotions that will have you laughing out loud or holding your breath in anticipation. After the kidnapping, it had a bit of a lull and was slow-going for a bit, but picked up about halfway through. There were also a few inconceivabilities I questioned, but it did not detract from my enjoyment. I rate this novel 3.75 out of 5 stars.

Thank you NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review. https://moesbookblog.wordpress.com/

Reviewed: March 26, 2017. Novel Publish Date: April 4, 2017.

Link to purchase via Goodreads

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BRIDGES: A DAPHNE WHITE NOVEL by Maria Murnane

IMG_0867    BRIDGES: A DAPHNE WHITE NOVEL by Maria Murnane

Bridges: A Daphne White Novel by Maria Murnane is a women’s fiction novel about three women who were college friends and are now in their early 40s, decide to catch up in New York City on the 4th of July to celebrate a surprise engagement, but each of them has a secret. Will all be revealed?

Daphne is a divorced mom working as a part-time florist in Ohio, decided it was time to realize her long-forgotten dream of being a journalist and finally penned her debut fictional novel. However, her self-doubt is dragging her down as the rejection emails continue to trickle in and she sees how successful Skylar is thinking that could’ve been her had she not devoted her entire adult life to taking care of her family. Skylar is a jet-setting corporate software salesperson in NYC who never slows down and always claimed she’d never marry, but now is engaged. KC is a happily married fitness junky and guru living in California who recently became a first-time grandmother. These women all lead distinctly different lives, but still make the time to support each other and get together for important milestones in each other’s lives.

I really enjoyed learning about these three women’s differing world’s and strong bond as the plot unfolded. It was a well-written and enjoyable quick read with a twist of humour that will have you laughing out loud. I rate this novel 4 out of 5 stars. This novel is a standalone work, however, it has the same characters as in the novel Wait for the Rain published in 2015 where the same three friends reunited to celebrate their 40th birthdays in the Caribbean. I would also recommend reading that novel as well.

Thank you to Maria Murnane for contacting me and providing a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review via NetGalley and Amazon Publishing. https://moesbookblog.wordpress.com/

Reviewed: March 22, 2017. Novel Publish Date: April 4, 2017.

Link to purchase via Goodreads

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RIOT by Tillie Cole

IMG_0866     RIOT by Tillie Cole

Riot by Tillie Cole is the 4th instalment in the Scarred Souls series. From the moment the storyline started in the New York underworld with a Blood Pit death match, I was enraptured. Warrior 901, aka the Pit Bull, is owned by Master Arziani and trained with the sole intent to kill for his master’s pleasure. Taken when he was a boy to become a slave or “demon shade” fighter, he was forced to live in a cage, and was beaten, tortured and trained his entire life. 901 knows nothing different. His only undoing is the “mona” or pleasure slave 152, Master’s High Mona.

This is the first novel I’ve read by this author and I quite enjoyed it. It’s a bit unlike anything I’ve read in terms of romance with an intriguing, dark dystopian setting; not your typical romance storyline. This novel is part of a series but can stand alone – that is – you didn’t have to have read the previous three in the series to enjoy this book. I rate it 5 out of 5 stars.

Thank you NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review. https://moesbookblog.wordpress.com/

Reviewed: March 18, 2017. Novel Publish Date: March 7, 2017.

Link to purchase: Goodreads

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BABY DOLL by Hollie Overton

IMG_0864    BABY DOLL by Hollie Overton

The novel Baby Doll by Hollie Overton is a mystery/thriller about a sixteen year-old girl who was kidnapped and held hostage for eight years. Every chapter alternates between the perspectives of four character’s: Lily, Rick, Eve, and Abby. Lily, the protagonist, finally escapes after being held in captivity for eight years with her six year old daughter Sky after their captor makes a mistake. Before the abduction, Lily was docile and delicate, but over time became a strong and unbreakable woman. Rick Hanson, a high school English educator and a self-proclaimed writer, is a manipulative and calculating psycho. He is married and an active pillar in the community, but lives a double life where he keeps the girl he abducted locked in the basement of his “writing” cabin with the child that was conceived from rape. Eve, the twins mother and hospital director, is numb and without purpose, merely existing in life. Abby, Lily’s older twin sister, is the bossy, domineering twin who was fearless and sassy, but after Lily’s abduction, became the weak and fragile one.

Not one of the most thrilling books I’ve ever read as there are no surprising plot twists typical of thrillers, but interesting enough to finish. If you enjoyed the book Room by Emma Donoghue, this novel has a similar storyline. The characters do lack some depth and can seem a bit contrived or superficial, but if you’re looking for a quick beach read, this will do. I rate it 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Thank you NetGalley and Redhook Books for providing a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review. https://moesbookblog.wordpress.com/

Reviewed: March 12, 2017. Novel Publish Date: July 12, 2016.

Link to purchase: Goodreads

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IT’S ALWAYS THE HUSBAND by Michele Campbell

img_0861   IT’S ALWAYS THE HUSBAND by Michele Campbell

The premise of this novel It’s Always the Husband by Michele Campbell is about a tumultuous and longstanding relationship between three women Kate, a charismatic manipulative shrew, Aubrey, a needy, depreciated, spineless soul, and Jenny, a constant fixer and sycophant. These women have been friends since college, but somewhere along the way, their relationships takes a wrong turn. Fast forward twenty years, and typical selfish Kate does the unthinkable, betraying Aubrey’s trust after years of unfettered and unreciprocated loyalty. This novel is a combination of women’s fiction and a typical whodunit mystery well worth the read. I particularly enjoy reading books that flashback and forth from past to present seamlessly weaving the story for readers to piece together. I rate this novel 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Thank you NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review. https://moesbookblog.wordpress.com/

Reviewed: March 5, 2017. Novel Publish Date: May 16, 2017.

Link to purchase: Goodreads

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GATHER THE DAUGHTERS by Jennie Melamed

img_0841     GATHER THE DAUGHTERS by Jennie Melamed 

When the country became a wasteland, several men and their families colonized a coastal island where they built a fundamentalist society based on worshipping ancestors, controlling breeding, and restricting all knowledge of prior history of the unknown wastelands. Only the Wanderers or chosen male descendants of the original ten families are allowed to enter the still burning wastelands to scavenge for debris.

In this patriarchal dystopian society, as soon as a daughter reaches puberty or “fruition”, her sole purpose becomes breeding. Daughters do not want to give birth to daughters so they will not have to endure the incestuous abuse they themselves endured until their first bleeding. When a daughter’s children begins to have children, both parents are no longer deemed useful and are forced to drink the draught that will end their lives making room for future generations.

The story is told through the differing perspectives of four daughters: Vanessa, Amanda, Caitlyn, and Janey.

Vanessa is 13 years old and has an unquenchable thirst for knowledge about any tidbit of information beyond the suppressive colony.
Amanda is not quite 15 and is married and pregnant. She has a mother who despises her and a father who loves her too much. Her only escape was to marry and get away from her family.
Caitlyn, a rare first-generation child from the wasteland, came to the island when she was just a baby. Her father is a drunk and a her mother is a meek wallflower.
Janey, a fiery red-haired 17 year old, does everything in her power not to become a woman. She doesn’t eat much hoping to prolong her fruition and wants to seek the truth about what lies beyond the colony.

This book was so great, I read through the first half non-stop. Seeing the colony through each girls’ eyes was very interesting as the history of the wastelands and the mystery surrounding the colony was slowly revealed in bits and snatches. Not one of the girls was entirely happy and felt as if she were missing something but couldn’t identify what that missing component was. Just a deep yearning for freedom. This debut novel by Jennie Melamed was spellbinding and riveting! I rate this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Thank you NetGalley and Little, Brown and Company for providing a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review. https://moesbookblog.wordpress.com/

Reviewed: February 26, 2017. Novel Publish Date: July 25, 2017.

Link to purchase: Goodreads

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ONE PERFECT LIE by Lisa Scottoline

img_0840       ONE PERFECT LIE by Lisa Scottoline

One Perfect Lie by Lisa Scottoline is a literary mystery about a stranger new to the town of Central Valley, Pennsylvania, masquerading as a coach and teacher. Unbeknownst to the students, parents, and faculty, Curt Abbot, known as Chris Brennan, has a plan that will soon leave this small southern town reeling or does he?

This story is very intriguing in that the protagonist’s motives are not made clear until about halfway through the novel, which definitely kept my interest. It was also not the norm in that the protagonist was male, although there were other female characters who contributed to the plot. I don’t want to reveal any spoilers so I won’t elaborate, but who I thought the protagonist was and what I suspected was going to happen, did not, and kept me guessing until the very end. Well done! I rate this novel 4 out of 5 stars.

Thank you NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review. https://moesbookblog.wordpress.com/

Reviewed: February 18, 2017. Novel Publish Date: April 11, 2017.

Link to purchase: Goodreads