Friday, June 28, 2024

Book Review - The Morningside by Téa Obreht


The Morningside by Téa Obreht is about a young girl, Silvia, and her mother moving to a new country to start over. Silvia and her mother came to live at the Morningside, an aging luxury tower located on Island City after fleeing from their ancestral home. At the Morningside, Silvia’s aunt Ena serves as the superintendent. 

Silvia is excited to spend time with her aunt Ena since her mother has always been secretive about their past and family. Silvia wishes her mother would tell her more, including why they had to leave their home. The only thing Silvia knows is that her new home is sinking. Silvia feels that her aunt would be receptive to her curiosity and questions.

Ena is excited to have her niece living with her and fills Silvia’s mind with stories from her past, her homeland, and folktales. Silvia is entranced by the stories and begins to see magic in her everyday life. She believes the older woman, Bezi Duras, who lives in the penthouse is a witch. No one knows anything about Bezi other than she only goes out at night and takes her three massive dogs with her and returns early in the morning. Silvia is determined to find out the truth about Bezi and her own past. 

I was torn on this novel. It had an interesting premise but I didn’t quite understand where the author was trying to go with this book. Was it a coming of age story? Was it a fantasy novel? Or was it to warn people about the dangers of global warming? I felt like it was all over the place.

There were times that the author went into a lot of details for certain things, but then for other things there was nothing given. For example, the author never explains why eating meat is frowned upon and why it’s something done in secret. The book also hints at magical elements but the author nor the characters never explain more details about it.  It made the story feel odd and disjointed. The novel moved very slowly and I found the writing confusing. The ending felt like it didn’t resolve anything and that I was left with more questions than answers.

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Book Review - Honor Bound by Hallee Bridgeman


Honor Bound by Hallee Bridgeman is about a woman, Dr. Cynthia Myers, who flees across the world to heal her broken heart after her fiancé publicly dumped her. Cynthia is on a medical mission in a remote village in Katangela, Africa. She works as an OBGYN and helps women take care of their children. Everything is going to plan until a warlord’s dying son is brought to her doorstep. Before Cynthia can attempt to save him, she knows it’s a lost cause because the man is beyond saving.

Captain Rick Norton and his Army Special Forces are on a special top secret mission in the jungles of Katangela. He and his troops are tasked with finding and subduing the local warlord that’s been terrorizing and burning other local villages. However, Rick’s mission takes an unexpected turn when he receives word that the daughter of America’s Vice President is nearby and her life might be in danger.

Rick and his men have to use deadly force to subdue the warlord and his soldiers. It is the only way they can protect Cynthia and the local villages. Cynthia is upset that Rick is using violence to solve the problem and feels guilty that more people are being hurt because of her. 

Cynthia tries to keep her feelings about him to herself but she feels herself attracted to Rick. While Cynthia tries to work through her feelings for Rick, two members of Rick’s team are badly injured and they are being pursued by the warlord's soldiers. Will Cynthia be able to put aside what Rick does for a living and be true to her feelings?

I thought the book was an okay read. It had a lot of action but no unexpected twists or turns. The book was filled with action in the beginning but tapered down towards the middle and picked up slightly towards the end. I like that the author included a lot of details about the jungle and the animals. It made us feel like we were a part of their journey. 

The book had a lot of characters and it was hard to keep track of but I did like the friendly banter between Rick and his team. I liked Cynthia in the beginning because I thought her mission of helping the less fortunate to be admirable. However, when she kept pushing and needling Rick to be nonviolent, it got to be annoying. She witnessed the destruction and carnage the local warlord created but she didn’t want to use violence. It would be amazing if they could get the warlord to stop without violence but that didn’t seem like an option. Cynthia complaining and harping about something without offering another solution got annoying very quickly. At times, I was wondering how the two of them liked each other based on their interactions with each other and their conflicting personalities. This was my first book by the author and I would be open to reading more books by her.

Saturday, June 22, 2024

Book Review - The Daddy Diaries: The Year I Grew Up by Andy Cohen


 The Daddy Diaries: The Year I Grew Up by Andy Cohen is a diary with the day to day life events of larger than life celebrity, Andy Cohen. The book starts off on January 1st, 2022, the day after his infamous New Year’s Eve broadcast. Andy wakes up with a hangover and that pretty much sums up how the rest of his year goes.

I am familiar with Andy Cohen but I am not a fan. Not that I have anything against him but I haven’t seen anything he was in or produced. The book was written like a diary and some entries were filled with useless and pointless details. Fans of Andy Cohen and Desperate Housewives might enjoy the details from  the shows and gossip. However, since I am not familiar with either, most of the details went over my head. I did like the fun details about the different restaurants he ate at.


Thursday, June 20, 2024

Book Review - The Nasty: The Complete Series by John Lees + Giveaway

The Nasty: The Complete Series by John Lees is about a group of horror movie-obsessed friends who try to create their own horror movie. In Scotland in 1994, eighteen-year-old Graeme “Thumper” Connell loves horror movies and is obsessed with them. He loves them so much that his imaginary friend is the masked killer from his favorite slasher film. His imaginary friend from childhood is still with him as an adult. He and his friends enjoy spending time watching new horror movies and they created a club, The Murder Club, to showcase their love for it. When one of the club members gets their hands on an elusive and notorious film known locally as a “video nasties”, everything begins to change.  The movie is so scary that it was a target of the British Moral Decency League’s crusade to ban and burn the videotape. However, that’s not the only thing that makes the film notorious. When the Murder Club watches the film, weird things begin to happen.

The graphic novel was an easy straightforward read. There was some blood and gore but nothing scary to get nightmares over. The plot was easy to guess and there weren’t any twists or turns. The artwork was well done and fun. The graphic novel would be a fun read for any horror fans.

**Disclosure I received a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest opinion**


About The Book:

Title: THE NASTY: The Complete Series

Authors: John Lees & Adam Cahoon (Illustrator)

Pub. Date: May 28, 2024

Publisher: Vault Comics

Formats:  Paperback, eBook

Pages: 200

Find it: Goodreads

The Ring meets Empire Records in THE NASTY, a coming-of-age horror story splattered with dark comedy, as a group of horror movie-loving teens bites off more than they can handle when the most sought-after video nasty ever slips through their fingers, and they are forced to film their own video nasty slasher movie – where evil, screams, and nightmares bleed into reality

Keep telling yourself: “IT’S ONLY A MOVIE!!!
Isn't it?

Scotland, 1994.
Eighteen-year-old Graeme “Thumper” Connell still has an imaginary friend: the masked killer from his favorite slasher film. Thumper is obsessed with horror and always has been. He fills his time with scary VHS rentals and hanging out with his friends and fellow fans, The Murder Club. But everything changes when his local video shop acquires one of the notorious films known as “video nasties” — films so scary they’re the target of the British Moral Decency League’s crusade to ban and burn.
But it’s only a movie, right?
It’s all just imaginary, isn’t it?

The Nasty is a story about the perception of evil, the power of genre, the love of fandom, the need to create art, oh, and crap-your-pants TERROR! Become a bonafide member of The Murder Club: pick up this book!

For fans of Stranger ThingsStand By Me, IT, The Monster SquadDonnie Darko,Empire RecordsMy Best Friend’s Exorcism and other books by Grady Hendrix, fans of Stephen King and Neil Gaiman, Little Monsters (Jeff Lemire & Dustin Nguyen), The Closet (James Tynion IV), The Me You Love in the Dark (Skottie Young & Jorge Corona), Giant DaysAfterlife With Archie, Killadelphia (Rodney Barnes & Jason Shawn Alexander), and Proctor Valley Road.

Horror Comics To Watch For in 2023 Fangoria

“There is no other title I have been more excited about than this because it is a love letter to horror while tackling the conservatism we are seeing rise in pop culture today..." - Fangoria

“The Nasty is a bloody valentine to slashers and the outsiders who love them.”– AIPT

The Nasty is a love letter to slasher flicks and a generation of kids who loved them. Tender, funny, surprising, endearing, with an emerging horrific twist. We had Faces of Death as the taboo underground horror tape that was whispered about but it wasn't cursed. The Nasty takes a fun nostalgic trip down memory lane and elevates it to a new level of horror. – Lotusland Comics




About John Lees:

John Lees is an award-winning comic book writer from Glasgow, Scotland. He is best known for his work on acclaimed horror series AND THEN EMILY WAS GONE, with artist Iain Laurie, and hard-boiled Glasgow crime saga SINK, drawn by frequent collaborator Alex Cormack. Currently, Lees is the co-creator and writer of THE NASTY from Vault Comics. John's other credits include superhero drama THE STANDARD, serial killer thriller OXYMORON: THE LOVELIEST NIGHTMARE, psychedelic nightmare quest QUILTE, and a story for TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES UNIVERSE. His latest projects are MOUNTAINHEAD, a snow-
swept thriller from IDW Publishing, working with artist Ryan Lee, and HOTELL, a horror anthology series from AWA Upshot, featuring artist Dalibor Talajic.

Newsletter subscription:


Website | Twitter | Instagram


About Adam Cahoon:

Tuffs, Origin House: Spa and Retreat, and Anomaly, as well as his design work with Second Rocket Comics. His other credits include the fan comic Silver Surfer Grey, and the forth-coming I Was A Teenage Ghost Rider. He has design work as well as short comics in the forthcoming books Everything Is Different Now from Justin Richards, Morsels by J Donahue, and Dead Blood by DB Andry.

Website | Twitter | Instagram



Giveaway Details:

2 winners will receive finished copies of THE NASTY: The Complete Series, US Only.

Ends June25th, midnight EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:


Two Chicks on Books

Excerpt/IG Post


The Momma Spot






Fire and Ice Reads

Excerpt/IG Post


Sadie's Spotlight

Interview Adam Cahoon/IG Post


Writer of Wrongs


Week Two:



IG Review



IG Review


Comic Book Yeti

Interview John Lees/X Post


Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer

Review/IG Post



IG Review



IG Review



IG Review

Week Three:


Books and Zebras

IG Review


The Book Critic

Review/IG Post





Country Mamas With Kids

Review/IG Post





Brandi Danielle Davis

IG Review/TikTok Post


A Blue Box Full of Books

IG Review/LFL Drop Pic/TikTok Post

Week Four:



IG Review/TikTok Post



IG Review/TikTok Post



IG Review



IG Review/TikTok Post


Two Points of Interest

Review/IG Post


Lifestyle of Me


Sunday, June 16, 2024

Book Review - Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli


Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli is about a closeted teenager, Simon Spier, who is being blackmailed about his sexuality. Sixteen year old Simon prefers to keep his sexuality under wraps and to focus on other things at school, such as the school musical. However, drama soon follows Simon when a secret email falls into the wrong hands.

Simon was corresponding with a fellow student, Blue, through email. The two things that Simon knows about them is that they go to his school and that they are also a closeted gay male like Simon who wants to keep his life private. Simon finds himself drawn to and liking Blue but that's all jeopardized when another student finds Simon’s private emails to Blue.

Simon finds himself forced to leave his comfort zone if he wants to keep his secret. He tries to navigate his life while meeting the blackmailer's demands. However, Simon will need to choose whether he will stand up for himself or will he ruin his chances with Blue and lose his friends.

I thought the book was a fun and cute read. I liked reading about how Simon was navigating staying true to himself and his beliefs but while trying to figure out who he is. There were times where I was yelling, “you know better, Simon” and then rejoiced in the moments where he got his life in order. 

There were parts I had felt iffy about. Such as when Simon thought the blackmailer wasn’t so bad and that they could be friends and then the fallout and aftermath between the two of them. I also thought at times that there were too many minor characters to keep up with and it was difficult to remember how they related to Simon. I did think that Simon could have treated his friends better and been more open with them, especially the ones he’d known for years. My favorite parts were the email snippets between Blue and Simon.  Readers who like high school drama and books about finding yourself, would enjoy this fun read.

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Book Review - The Light Pirate by Lily Brooks-Dalton


 The Light Pirate by Lily Brooks-Dalton is about a woman named Wanda Lowe who tries to survive in the world while everything is changing around her. Kirby Lowe is an electrical line worker in Florida. It is his job to prepare for the worst and then help others recover from the aftermath. When news hit of a pending hurricane, he thought he and his family would be prepared for the worst.

He left his two sons, Flip and Lucas, with his pregnant wife, Frida, as he prepared for the storm. As the storm starts picking up in momentum on its path, his two sons escape to the outside to enjoy some fresh air before the storm reaches them. A few minutes later, the hurricane picks up and the boys are nowhere to be found. 

Kirby leaves Frida at home while he searches for his kids as the storm ravishes the town. Frida goes into an unexpected premature labor and gives birth to a girl with an unusual innate power that she names after the horrifying storm that brings the town to its knees. 

As storms and environmental change continue to destroy Florida, Wanda grows from a child into an adult learning how to deal with the rapidly changing environment.

I was a bit torn on liking the novel and not loving it. It was an interesting read and I thought it was thought provoking. It was a bit scary to read about the world basically collapsing and mankind barely holding on to existence. However, I think it causes us to think about our current landscape and what we can do to improve the environment so we can avoid going extinct. 

At times, I found the novel to be boring and moved at a snail’s pace. I would read pages after pages and nothing would happen plot wise. The author would spend a lot of time explaining some of the nitty gritty but I wish she spent more time explaining why Wanda was so unusual. I wish the author included a note on why she gave Wanda her ability and if there are others. I also wondered what the point of this book was and what genre of book it was supposed to be. If you like reading books about the effect of climate change and the slow demise of civilization, then you might enjoy this book.


Thursday, June 6, 2024

Book Review - To Slip the Bonds of Earth by Amanda Flower


To Slip the Bonds of Earth by Amanda Flower is about a twenty-nine-year-old woman, Katharine Wright, solving a murder to help clear the name of one of her students. In December 1903, Katherine’s brothers, Wilbur and Orville, created a flying machine that took flight in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Back home in Dayton, Ohio, Katharine is running their bicycle shop, teaching language classes, and looking after the family. She is frustrated that she isn’t treated fairly because of her gender and is passed up on opportunities also because of this. She never thought solving a murder would be the way to test her intellectual mettle. 


After returning home to Dayton, the siblings are invited to a local socialite’s Christmas party. Wilbur decides to take their unpatented flying machine plans because he is shy around people and figured he would work on them when he is alone at the party. However, after a distracting incident, Wilbur notices that his plans are missing. He decides to ask his sister, Katharine, to help him locate the plans. To make matters worse, the prime suspect in the theft is found dead with Wilbur’s screwdriver in his chest. Will Katharine be able to solve the mystery before Wilbur ends up being grounded in prison?


The book was an okay read. It was a cozy murder mystery read that was based on a real character. I was surprised to find out that the Orville brothers had a sister and that she was very accomplished in her own right. Katharine was a fun character and I liked that she stood up for what she believed in but wasn’t so blinded that she couldn’t see other people’s points of view. The book didn’t have any plot twists or unexpected turns. Readers who enjoy a cozy read will enjoy this book.

Monday, June 3, 2024

Book Review - Two Sides to Every Murder by Danielle Valentine


Two Sides to Every Murder by Danielle Valentine is about two girls who are trying to find out the truth about the three murders that happened seventeen years ago.  Olivia is like every other teenager, except her birth was tied to one of the most gruesome murders their town has ever seen. She was born the same day three people were murdered at Camp Lost Lake.

Olivia was assigned to work on her family tree for a class project. She decided to send her DNA swab for analysis to get a full-picture view of her family tree. Unfortunately, she finds out that the man she has been calling dad is not her biological father. She is now determined to find out the truth about her birth. She decides that the only place she can get the truth is at Camp Lost Lake, where everything began.

Reagan has spent most of her teenage years on the run. Her mother is the suspected murderer of the three people from Camp Lost Lake all those years ago. They had been in hiding when an unsolved murder mystery podcast outed Reagan’s mother. Reagan believes that her mother is innocent and is determined to clear her name and get their lives back. The opportunity for Reagan and Olivia to find out the truth comes when Olivia’s older sister, Andie, decides to reopen Camp Lost Lake. Will the duo be able to find out what happened before history repeats itself?

The book was an interesting and fast-paced read. I found myself glued to the storyline while trying to guess who was behind the murders. The book had some twists and turns as well as a few predictable moments. The book was told from Olivia’s and Reagan’s alternating points of view. I liked reading how they both reacted when finding out secrets from the past. The author also included a few flashbacks from the time of the murders, which I liked reading. It helped give readers some clues and context behind events.  I didn’t care for the romance arc of the book, but I enjoyed reading everything else. I would be open to reading more books by the author.