Book Review: The Sanctity of Sloth by Greta Boris

Title: The Sanctity of Sloth
Author: Greta Boris
Genre: Suspense, Mystery
Series: The Seven Deadly Sins
Rating: 4,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

There’s one thing more dangerous than testifying to a crime—staying silent.
Locked in the ruins of a California Mission, Abby Travers watches helplessly as a girl dies outside her window. As she struggles between her moral obligation to come forward as a witness, and her commitment to a Medieval religious practice that requires her to retreat from the world, the situation spins out of control.
Abby’s hesitation starts a series of catastrophes. She finds herself at the center of a deadly cover up where every minute counts and indecision could be fatal. She questions all her beliefs and everyone she knows becomes suspect. To save herself and those she loves, she must break free from her self-imposed prisons of stone and fear.
The Sanctity of Sloth is a taut, psychological thriller that answers the question: What happens when a good woman does nothing? Fans of Paula Hawkins and A.J. Finn will enjoy this third book in Greta Boris’s Seven Deadly Sins Series.

 

The Sanctity of Sloth is the first book I’ve read by Greta Boris, but I’m already certain it won’t be my last. This book is the third book in a series, but even without reading book one and two, I could follow the story easily enough.

Abby Travers is forced to watch helplessly when a girl dies outside her window, while she’s locked up in a secret room in the ruins of a California Mission. Abby doubts between coming forward as a witness, and her commitment to the practise of the anchorites (and for those unfamiliar with the word, an anchorite is someone who withdraws from secular society for religious reasons). The practice sounds a little bizarre, but when woven into the story and connected with the personality of someone like Abby, it actually makes a lot of sense.

Abby’s hesitation to come forward has disastrous consequences, and Abby starts to question everything she’s ever believed in.

The pacing is great, the tension is nail-biting, and overall the premise is intriguing. Abby makes for a complex, but well-defined and recognizable character. A suspenseful mystery that certainly leaves the reader guessing.

Book Review: A Trace of Revenge by Lyle Howard

Title: A Trace of Revenge
Author: Lyle Howard
Genre: Paranormal Mystery, Thriller, Supernatural Thriller
Rating: 4,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

A young boy is left for dead by the assassin who has just bludgeoned his parents.

Matt Walker witnesses the murder of his parents but is able to escape and remains alive. He loses his ability to hear but finds out he has a unique power called Psychometry. This power is an ability to “trace” or know an object’s history, just by touching it.

A few years later, a top-secret government armament is stolen during a deadly hijacking at sea and someone intends to sell the powerful weapon to fulfill their own twisted ambitions.

At the same time, a ruthless mob boss has a gruesome secret that he must protect no matter the cost.

All it takes is something as unassuming as a foul ball hit at a Major League baseball game, to send all of these characters and events spiraling on a collision course aboard the most unique cruise ship ever built and send Matt on the quest to find his parents’ killer.

In A Trace of Revenge, Matt Walker witnessed his parents’ murder and narrowly escaped with his life. Although he can no longer hear due to this terrifying ordeal, he discovers he has an unique power: the ability to trace an object’s history by touching it.

Seeking revenge for what happened to his parents, Matt is dead-set on tracking down the killer, no matter what the cost. Add in the theft of a top-secret government weapon, the most unique cruise ship ever built, and a ruthless mob boss with a harrowing secret, and you have an edge-of-your-seat thriller that is fast-paced, not predictable at all, and solidly escorts the reader from one chapter to the next.

Book Review: Haunted Blood by Elik Katzav

Title: Haunted Blood
Author: Elik Katzav
Genre: Paranormal Mystery / Thriller
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

A missing reporter is found drained of blood after being murdered in a ritualistic ceremony.

Now, a young boy has gone missing.

David used to be a police detective before he was shamefully dismissed for claiming that a demon possessed an old priest.Now, he is taking odd jobs as a private eye and investigating the disappearance of a missing boy. As his investigation progresses, he becomes certain that supernatural forces are involved.

The theft of an ancient pagan god statue from a museum, a patient in a psych ward who claims she took part in secret sacrificial killings, and a ruthless cult leader who will stop at nothing, all allow David to understand evil things are coming his way.

David must solve the mystery before the clock strikes zero. If he doesn’t find the boy, he will lose himself as well.

In Haunted Blood, we follow main character David, who used to be a police detective before he was dismissed because he claimed a demon was possessing an old priest. Now, David makes a living as private investigator, and it’s this job that leads him to the search for a missing young boy, which is linked to the murder of a missing reporter – found drained of blood in what looks to be a ritualistic ceremony.

Combined with a woman in the psych ward claiming she participated in sacrificial killings, and an evil cult leader, David realizes that the evil he recognized all those years ago has come back to haunt him. And if he wants to find the missing boy, he’ll have to face his own worst fears.

The world-building was great. I read a lot of paranormal mysteries, but to have one set in Israel is quite unique and gave it an intriguing feel. I liked the characters and plot, even if the plot was not that original, the setting and characters definitely made it entertaining!

Book Review: The False Mirror

Title: The False Mirror: A Female Sleuth Mystery (Sharon Davis Chronicles Book 2)
Author: Dana V. Moison
Genre: Murder Mystery
Rating: 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Sharon Davis, fearless NYPD homicide detective, is back in another sophisticated mystery where two cleverly crafted murder cases intertwine in the least expected way. A gripping thriller that will leave you speechless

Beautiful and tenacious NYPD homicide detective, Sharon Davis, investigates the unexplained death of a notorious escort girl who catered primarily to New York’s elite. Many high-ranking officials want her to close the case and quit snooping around, but Sharon knows there’s more to this than meets the eye. In the middle of the high-profile case, she meets sixteen-year-old Becky who desperately needs her help. Becky’s entire world crumbles overnight when she discovers she is the sole survivor of the horrendous assassination of her family. She turns to the help of her Uncle Jake but learns he isn’t who he has claimed to be…

Love and passion, witty dialogue, and sharp humor lead to questions with surprising answers

Becky must leave her peaceful hometown and search for clues about her about her mysterious past in New York City, where she crosses paths with the famous detective.

Supposedly, two different mysteries with two different solutions. Is that so?

The questions keep piling up: Who stands behind the ruthless vendetta against Becky’s family? How will Sharon’s chase after a sadistic killer turn out? And what will happen between her and the rugged marshal who has found himself in the middle of her investigation?

In The False Mirror, Sharon Davis is a NYPD homicide detective who is tasked to solve the unexplained death of a notorious escort girl who catered to New York’s elite. With many high-ranking officials wanting her to close the case as soon as possible, Sharon is not willing to give up until she finds some answers.

And then she meets Becky, a 16-year-old girl who is the sole survivor of the horrible murder of her family. Desperate to find answers as to who killed her family, Becky turned to New York and crosses paths with Sharon there.

When Sharon finds out both cases might be intertwined, she’s in for her most dangerous hunt yet, on a sadistic, ruthless killer.

This is an intense rollercoaster of a book with many edge-of-your-seat moments, great characters (in particular Sharon, who is downright amazing), a thrilling mystery with lots of twists and turns and great writing.

Book Review: Broken Code by Rafael Malul

Title: Broken Code
Author: Rafael Malul
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
Rating: 3 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Amos thought he’d seen everything… but then along came gorgeous Gabriel!

Amos Barda, a typical Israeli macho man and well-known womanizer, meets beautiful Gabriel, who turns his head and breaks through the many walls of his heart. The love affair between these two highly adventurous individuals leads to some international complications. Gabriel’s father, an agent of the infamous German Stasi turned CIA agent, has in his possession some highly confidential documents wanted by both the Americans and the Soviet Union. He is forced to go underground in order to protect his daughter after the assassination of his beloved wife.

Can Amos outmaneuver spies the world over to save his main lady?

Amos’s relationship with Gabriel’s drags him into a crazy international espionage story, and this former Israeli combat soldier with a rich life story manages to fool the CIA, KGB, and Israeli Security Agency. Amos becomes an Israeli James Bond, but can he rescue the love of his life in this sensual, electrifying tale of adventure?

In Broken Code, protagonist Amos Barda is a womanizer in the vein of James Bond, not looking to settle down any time soon, and always looking for the thrill of adventure. But then he meets Gabriel, who turns his world upside down. As adventurous as he is, as beautiful as he could ever imagined, Gabriel is everything Amos ever dreamed of. But Gabriel’s father is a former Stasi-agent now turned CIA, and he has several documents in his possession that both the Soviet Union and the USA want, at any cost, and he’s forced to go into hiding in order to protect his daughter.

If Amos wants to protect his Gabriel, he’ll have to outmanouver the CIA, KGB and the Israeli Security Agency, all at the same time.

The writing in the book isn’t very lyrical – it’s down-to-earth in a rather raw, blunt style, but I didn’t really mind given the focus in the book was more on action and mystery than on writing anyway. The love story is a little predictable as well, but as it’s a side story and not the main focus, I didn’t mind. The mystery itself is a solid one, the thriller/espionage aspects are well thought through.

All in all, a good read for fans of epsionage/thrillers and James Bond.

Book Review: Frightened in France (Alexa Bentley Paranormal Mysteries Book #2) by April A. Taylor

Title: Frightened in France (Alexa Bentley Paranormal Mysteries Book #2 by April A. Taylor)
Author: April A. Taylor
Genre: Paranormal Mystery
Rating: 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Alexa Bentley is back, and this time, she’s gone international! A series of disturbing murders in Paris send Alexa to some of the City of Light’s most notable attractions. Can she tap into the spectral network quickly enough to prevent another murder? And what do these crimes have to do with a notorious criminal from France’s past? Alexa scoffs at the idea that a ghost could be the murderer… but what if she’s wrong?

Alexa Bentley Paranormal Mysteries – She’s a witty, mystery-solving ghost therapist. From the author of the Midnight Myths and Fairy Tales Series.

Praise for Frightened in France:

“With book one Alex became my favorite unlikely hero. In book two I realized why…She seems like someone I could befriend. Alex is real, relatable, and relative. The story catches you, draws you in, and keeps you enticed till the end.” -Goodreads Reviewer

“I really enjoyed this read as much as the first in the series! New characters are introduced…the adventures they share are thrilling and entertaining.” -Goodreads Reviewer

“A great read that grab[s] your attention.” – Amazon Reviewer
Praise for Missing in Michigan:

“The story is fast-paced, the plot entertaining, the characters – in particular Alexa – are intriguing…this is a gripping read that fans of paranormal mysteries will certainly enjoy.” –I Heart Reading

“Alexa (Alex) Bentley is the type of main character I love…the plot grabbed me and made me want to read on…this is a book I would be quite happy to read a second time.” –Long & Short Reviews

I previously reviewed (and gave it 5 stars!) the first book in the series, Missing in Michigan. Read my review here.

In this sequel, Frightened in France, Alexa Bentley is back, and this time, a series of disturbing murders sends her to Paris, France. While the city is usually a romantic hangout, now it’s the scene of several gruesome murders… And it’s up to Alexa to prevent the next murder from happening, and to find out who the murderer is, and how she can stop him.

Once again, the story was so compelling I lost all track of time and space as I devoured chapter after chapter. This is my kind of book, spot-on. A relatable, witty heroine who I would love to hang out with in real life, storylines that incorporate murders and supernatural elements, a blast from the past, a setting I’ve visited a few times and really love (who doesn’t love Paris?), and writing that pulls you in from the start.

If you like paranormal mysteries and ghosts, then I absolutely, 100%, recommend this series!

Book Review: Incomplete Silence by Paul Usiskin

Title: Incomplete Silence
Author: Paul Usiskin
Genre: Thriller, Mystery
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Revie copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Police investigator Dov Chizzik combats a murderous right wing coup attempt

In this second Chizzik Saga, police investigator Dov Chizzik stumbles into a right wing coup to depose Israel’s Chief of Staff. Spearheading the coup is Rivka Aaronson, queen of settlement construction, assisted by Hodaya a ruthless killer. Rivka believes that only if Israel is occupied by religious settlers from the West Bank can it be authentically Jewish. Her first move is to replace the army’s Chief of Staff with a religious general.

Will Dov derail the coup without giving up everything he stands for?

Funding Rivka is the almost anonymous tycoon, Barry Hareven, with several Israeli politicians in his pocket, including the defense minister. Key to the coup are insect drones, which one of Hareven’s companies is developing. Dov is seduced, poisoned, and nearly murdered. Will he have to cross his own red lines to survive? Incomplete Silence is a futuristic thriller that keeps you breathless until the last page.

In Incomplete Silence, police investigator Dov Chizzik accidentally uncovers a right wing coup to depose of the Chief of Staff of the Israeli army. Rivka Aaronson is the woman leading the coup, a woman with certain ideas about religion that could potentially be dangerous. Dov’s life is put at risk more than once during his quest to stop the coup. Will he survive?

This book is a fast-paced thriller with an intriguing plot and one action sequence following the other. It explains a complex political situation in a straightforward way, and implements it into the story rather well. One downside is that some parts of the book are harder to grasp if you’re not familiar with the situation in Israel; however, this doesn’t derail from the story.

Book Review: Missing in Michigan (Alexa Bentley Paranormal Mysteries Book #1) by April A. Taylor

Title: Missing in Michigan (Alexa Bentley Paranormal Mysteries Book #1)

Author: April A. Taylor

Genre: Paranormal Mystery

Rating: 5 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Is she a medium? A psychic? Alexa Bentley only knows one thing for certain; she can talk to ghosts. And sometimes, they take her advice. Missing in Michigan is ideal for fans of the Sookie Stackhouse Southern Mysteries, quirky female characters, and the Paranormal Mystery/Supernatural Suspense genre. This exciting, funny new series will keep you guessing!
Alexa’s unusual ghost therapy skills take her to a remote corner of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. But this case is much trickier than anything else she’s ever encountered. A grieving ghost, several missing teens, and a supernatural creature from Native American folklore stand in her path. Along the way, she manages a bit of romance and lots of witty humor.
Alexa Bentley Paranormal Mysteries – She’s a witty, mystery-solving ghost therapist. From the author of the Midnight Myths and Fairy Tales Series.
Praise from Early Reviewers:
“I love Alex! She’s the witty, sometimes snarky, definitely quirky best friend you didn’t know you needed.” – Goodreads Reviewer
“The author’s voice is fresh and inviting. I was intrigued from beginning to end! I honestly can’t wait till book 2.” – Goodreads Reviewer
“I enjoyed it very much. It is going to be a very good series.” – Goodreads Reviewer

In Missing in Michigan, the first book in this brand new series, Alexa Bentley isn’t quite sure if she’s psychic, a medium, or something else alltogether, but one thing’s for sure: she can talk to ghost. As a therapist for the deceased, she helps troubled spirits move on to the afterlife, but that’s not always as easy as it sounds.

Her current case, for example, is anything but easy. This time around, rather than a living family asking her to remove a ghost from their property, it’s a grieving ghost enlisting her help. During a seemingly normal case, the ghost refuses to leave until Alexa helps her find her missing son. But then Alexa discovers there are more teens missing…

Missing teens, a supernatural creature from Native American folklore, and of course a plethora of ghostly activity are only the tip of the ice berg. I don’t want to give away any spoilers for the plot, so I’ll just say that a lot of stuff happens, and some of it you wouldn’t expect in the slightest!

The story is fast-paced, the plot entertaining, the characters – in particular Alexa – are intriguing, and overall, this is a gripping read that fans of paranormal mysteries will certainly enjoy.

Book Review: Wild Prey by Yossi Uzrad

Title: Wild Prey
Author: Yossi Uzrad
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Shlomki is haunted by memory of the woman, left for dead, whose life he saved 20 years ago. Shlomki, a park ranger in the Sea of Galilee region in northern Israel, is haunted by the rape and attempted murder of a young tourist who came to see the sites where Jesus performed his miracles. He found the young woman left for dead by the side of the road in a national park. She survived, but police were unable to solve the case and eventually dropped it. Shlomki teams up with Amir to defy all-powerful local authorities and seek justice Shlomki s earnest and naïve demeanor leads him into conflict with the local security forces, who are used to bending the rules as they please. Amir, a Bedouin who works for the tax authorities, is sent to investigate Shlomki’s finances, but the two end up joining forces and reopen the unsolved case. Together they pursue the murder investigation, discovering much more than they had been seeking about the powerful men of the secret forces who control the land.

Twenty years ago, Shlomki, a park ranger found a young woman, raped and on the brink of death, by the side of the road near the national park where he works in Northern Israel. The events have haunted him ever since, and even though police has dropped the case, Shlomki can’t let it go.

Amir is initially called in to check Shlomki’s finances, but as he too is troubled by the injustice of this world, the two of them end up combining ofrces – and eventually reopening the unsolved case, which leads them straight to secrets that could cost them their lives. For the all-powerful don’t like it when you dig up their dirty little secrets…

The story is vivid and gripping, all the way from the past to the present. Shlomki is an intriguing main character, complex and flawed, and he’s just the kind of character who can carry a story this grim, and through whom the reader to deal with a truth this ugly.

 

Book Review: The Emerald Circle by L. Rosenman

Title: The Emerald Circle
Author: L. Rosenman
Genre: Mystery, Suspense
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Their daughter’s kidnapping plunges the protagonists into a hair-raising calamity

A five-year-old child is kidnapped near her home in a small town in northern Israel. The secret behind her disappearance forces her parents to face a terrible crisis. Mutually suspicious, they embark separately on an emotionally and physically life-changing quest to find their daughter.

Will they ever find her?

Embarking on a physically and emotionally jolting journey to find their lost daughter, they find themselves in a mysterious, far-away, life-threatening place, ruled by a leader who intends to purify the world with genetic engineering. International corporate leaders with dark motives and the Israeli Mossad all feature in the plot.

They must brave a sinister state of altered reality in their search for her

The Emerald Circle is an additional dimension, paralleling our reality, in which occurrences can be more clearly seen. It has vital influence on the protagonists. The solution for the chaos and the turbulent events of the plot can be resolved only on the level of reality itself. In this reality, each passing day increases the danger that the little girl will never be found.

The Emerald Circle definitely fits into the genres of books I like: paranormal mixed with mystery. When a five-year-old goes missing, her parents are willing to do whatever it takes to get her back – although each of them has their own method to do it.

As the clock is racing, the mother infiltrates into a secret organization, and the father tries to help his family from the inside-out. The book skips between both views, giving the reader and over-reaching view over the entire story.

The mix of dystopian elements, the genetic engineering, and the missing-child-narrative is interesting. The book is suspenseful, to say the least, and not the kind of book you can put down halfway through.