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 Goddess of the Wild Thing

Title: Goddess of the Wild Thing
Author: Paul DeBlassie III
Genre: Paranormal Thriller
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Goddess of the Wild Thing is a dramatic tale of one woman’s spiritual journey where magical happenings, unexpected turns of fate, and unseen forces influence her ability to love and be loved. Eve Sanchez, a middle-aged woman and scholar of esoteric studies, encounters a seductive but frightening man who introduces her to a supernatural world in which the wicked powers of a surrogate mother’s twisted affection threaten love and life. In the mystic realms of Aztlan del Sur, Eve and three friends struggle with whether bad love is better than no love and discover that love is a wild thing.

In Goddess of the Wild Thing, Eve Sanchez, a middle-aged woman and scholar of esoteris studies, encounters a seductive man with a frightening side to him… Sam is a bit of a ladies man, arrogant, confident, and I was a bit wary of him at first. He grew on me, though, and I began to like him as the book progressed – however, never as much as I liked Eve.

Eve was a balanced character, sometimes confident, sometimes lacking confidence. She was looking for love, for the feeling of belonging somewhere, and her own search and spiritual journey made it easy for me to relate to her.

Part of the book is set in a supernatural world, in Aztlan del Sur, and Eve’s quest is not so much a quest to save herself or others, but more of an inner journey, a spiritual journey, to discover what love is, whether bad love is better than no love, and the meaning of it all. The ‘villain’ of the story, Sweet Mary, is quite an interesting character too, and when all the dots connected, the inner story with the events happening throughout the book, I was pleasantly surprised.

Fans of psychological thrillers with paranormal elements and a lot of magical sybolism will no doubt enjoy this book.


Book Review: Devil’s Bride by K.G. Isaac

Title: Devil’s Bride
Author: K.G. Isaac
Genre: Mystery, Erotic Thriller
Age Group: Adult (18+)
Rating: 3,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

A breathtaking mystical and erotic thriller that goes beyond imagination

Rabbi Menahem Mendel Schul, a reputable Jerusalemite matchmaker, is forced to take upon himself a ‘satanic’ assignment: finding a suitable human match for the Devil! He has exactly one year to accomplish the mission, or else his body and soul will go through the Seven Halls of Hell. Will he meet the deadline?

What happens when a Hasidic matchmaker is ordered to find a wife for the Devil?

The Rabbi embarks upon a frantic quest on the Devil’s characteristics and sexual preferences, so that he can find him a proper match. He is trying to find answers in both centuries-old and contemporary literature on Kabbalah, occultism, black magic, incantation, sorcery, satanic cults, devil-worship, and the like. Finding hypothetical insights insufficient, he makes up his mind to experience some of it personally. He meets with an African sorceress, takes part in a drugs-and-sex orgy in a German cemetery and witnesses a blood-chilling ritual performed by a Brazilian satanic cult.

Finally, the Rabbi succeeds in convincing two young Jewish girls to comply with his perverted plan, promising them a heavenly match, but firmly refuses to reveal any details about the chosen one’s identity. He then gradually prepares the girls for their superhuman challenge – sexually satisfying the Devil. The ‘training course’ includes exposure to drugs, perverted group sex, brutal rape, extreme BDSM sessions, and more. It is not long before the Rabbi finds himself living in his own dark underworld, where sin, lust and deviance become a hellish yet arousing routine.

Devil’s Bride is an exciting and gripping mystical novel that delves into the depth of sin, desires and spiritual transcendence. The twists in the powerful plot will leave you breathless up to the surprising climax.

In Devil’s Bride, the concept is quite awesome. Rabbi Menahem Mendel Schul, a reputable matchmaker, is forced to find a suitable match for none other than…the devil. He has one year to accomplish the mission, or his body and soul will be put through the Seven Halls of Hell. Rabbi emarks upon this seemingly impossible task, trying to find out the Devil’s characteristics and sexual preferneces. He searches for answers in all kinds of literature, the occult, even black magic, and even does some field research of his own–such as participating in an orgy, and witnessing a ritual performed by a cult.

He finally succeeds in convincing two young Jewish girls to comply with his plan, and then prepares them for their challenge: to satisfy the devil. The training course involves drugs, rape, extreme BDSM, and the likes, while the Rabbi himself ventures deeper and deeper into dark desires, becoming more and more like the Devil himself.

Some of the rape / drugs / BDSM parts were over the top for me, and I didn’t enjoy them all that much. I did like the concept, and I also liked the Rabbi’s own descent into madness and wickedness, and how he started to resemble his client–the Devil–over time.

Book Review: Hunted (A Jonathan Harker Novel) by Christopher Draven

Title: Hunted: A Jonathan Harker Novel
Author: Christopher Draven
Genre: Paranormal Thriller / Urban Fantasy
Rating: 4,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Slinging Spells with Broken Ribs Isn’t Easy

Jonathan Harker, mage and life-long demon hunter, wakes to find himself tied to a chair and severely wounded. His captor, a demon in service to a summoner who wants Harker alive.

Armed with impossibly powerful magic and a gang of demon toughs, the summoner has snared Harker in a deadly trap. Nothing is ever easy, and being new in town has left Harker with few allies. However, with help from a Fortune-Teller named Clover and a self-described “Kitchen Witch” named Momma Dee, Harker fights back.

To prevail, Harker must walk unprepared into a pit of demons and black magic – and come out alive on the other side.

In Hunted, the first book in the Jonathan Harker series, protagonist Jonathan Harker is a mage and demon-hunter trapped by a demon in service to a summoner. If he wants to escape, he’ll have to rely on a bunch of new allies he isn’t sure he can trust, and on his own magic.

Jonathan Harker is an intriguing protagonist. He’s witty and sarcastic, but also very intelligent and not willing to give up without a fight. Jonathan seemed like a real person, and so did the secondary characters. Each character introduced to the readers stood out and was different from the others. The writing was excellent and fast-paced as it quickly dived into the story. The world-building was solid too, and we don’t get any info-dumping as the world slowly unfolds around Harker and his allies (and enemies).

When it comes to paranormal thrillers, this is definitely one of the better books in the genre. If you enjoy this genre, give Jonathan Harker and his magic spells and witty humor a try.


Book Review: The Girl Who Talks to Ghosts by J.H. Moncrieff

Title: The Girl Who Talks to Ghosts
Author: J.H. Moncrieff
Genre: Supernatural Suspense
Rating: 4,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Would you risk everything to save a stranger?

 Off the coast of Venice lurks Poveglia, the world’s most haunted isle, steeped in centuries of innocent blood. A deranged doctor who took great joy in torturing his patients in life continues to rule his abandoned asylum after death.

Few go to Poveglia willingly, but medium Kate Carlsson has no choice. It’s her job.

While struggling to retrieve a young girl’s soul, Kate uncovers some shocking truths about the evil on the island that challenges her own convictions and morals—and even her life.

Is saving Lily worth making a deal with the infamous Doctor of Death, or is the price too high to pay?

The Girl Who Talks to Ghosts is the sequel to City of Ghosts, which I reviewed earlier. I loved the first book, but I liked the second book even more. This time, the book isn’t set in China (one of my favorite parts about book one was the implementation of Chinese culture) yet it still features a foreign culture, since most of the book is set in Venice, Italy, and the island of Poveglia. I’ve always been a big fan of Italy. I once visited Venice and I loved the city, so I certainly didn’t mind the different setting.

Kate Carlsson is a medium, and desperate to retrieve a young girl’s soul, she heads to the haunted isle. She uncovers some shocking truths about the island that challenges her own beliefs and morals, and even her own life. Kate was already one of the characters in City of Ghosts, and I was glad to follow her along now in this second book. Jackson, the main character of City of Ghosts, is also back for round two.

The writing was excellent and I was drawn into the story right away. Poveglia is an actual island – I’d heard about it prior to reading the book, as I’m a huge history / ghosts / legends buff, and I loved the author had picked this setting. The characters were complex and intriguing, even the villains. The storylines were engaging, and the book kept me guessing. An excellent pageturner!

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Book Review: A Slaughter of Angels by Matthew Angelo

EBTitle: A Slaughter of Angels

Author: Matthew Angelo

Genre: Paranormal / Crime / Thriller

Age Group: Adult (18+)

Rating: 4,5 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

As the owner of the Midnight Agency, a private investigation company, I handle all sorts of cases that the police are unable to solve. This case was nothing different. Girls from a local club have come up missing and it is up to me, Rian MacCaren, to find them. Only problem is that the bad guy is no longer human. He is something else. That’s what happens when you sell your soul to a demon.

In A Slaughter of Angels, Rian MacCaren is the owner of the Midnight Agency, a private investigation company specializing in the kind of cases the police can’t solve. He’s a Nephilim, and he deals in the paranormal. His latest case is nothing out of the ordinary, for him at least. Girls from a local club have gone missing, and Rian has to find them. When the girls turn up dead, and the culprit appears to be something more than human, Rian might be in for more than he bargained for.

I absolutely love books that mix detective novel with paranormal. Rian’s unique abilities, such as being able to connect to what the dead girls experienced by touching them, brings an extra layer to the book. Rian isn’t afraid of swearing, and he does fit the brooding loner type. He reminded me of the detectives in noir novels, except of course with the paranormal element.

The plot was entertaining, the pacing was spot on, and overall, I really enjoyed this book. The author did a great job describing the setting, and introducing the reader to the characters.

Book Review: The Journals of Bob Drifter by M.L.S. Weech

CoverRevealTitle: The Journals of Bob Drifter
Author: M.L.S. Weech
Genre: Paranormal Thriller / Urban Fantasy
Age Group: Adult
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Bob Drifter is a substitute teacher with a secret. He seems like no more than a polite young man who loves to read and mentor students in his free time. Yet, on the side, Bob takes part in some rather strange extracurricular activities that soon attract the attention of local police. For some reason, people have a way of dying around him.

 It’s not his fault. Maybe he just hangs around people who are already dying. Maybe he has bad timing. But Bob knows better. He has a secret mission that must be completed before he ends up in prison or raises the ire of the most frightening individual in the supernatural world. No pressure.

 A terrifying new force has set foot into Bob’s life, and a string of ghastly mutilations follows this figure wherever he goes. Now, Bob has to keep his own secrets, protect his students, and fulfill his mentor’s wishes. Welcome to the world of those who watch over the dead.

 In The Journals of Bob Drifter, protagonist Bob Drifter isn’t your ordinary substitute teacher. People around him keep on dying, for a very good reason, but this could make Bob’s life surprisingly complicated when the cops become suspicious of the high amount of dead people that cross his path. When his secret becomes endangered, Bob struggles to accomplish his task, fulfill his mentor’s wishes while at the same time protecting his students and just about everyone else.

What a thrilling, edge-of-your-seat read. It’s an amazing, fast-paced book that doesn’t slow down until the end. Bob is an intriguing character, very brave, cares a lot about others, and I also loved the fact he’s a teacher. The world building was intriguing and I enjoyed getting to explore this world.

If you love paranormal thrillers, I highly recommend this one.

Book Review The Girl in the Maze

The Girl in the Maze_JacksonTitle: The Girl in the Maze
Author: R.K. Jackson
Genre: Thriller
Age Group: Adult (18+)
Rating: 4 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Perfect for fans of Gillian Flynn, Paula Hawkins, and Tana French, R. K. Jackson’s lyrical, twisty psychological thriller debut follows an aspiring journalist as she uncovers dark truths in a seaswept Southern town—aided by a mysterious outcast and pursued by a ruthless killer.

When Martha Covington moves to Amberleen, Georgia, after her release from a psychiatric ward, she thinks her breakdown is behind her. A small town with a rich history, Amberleen feels like a fresh start. Taking a summer internship with the local historical society, Martha is tasked with gathering the stories of the Geechee residents of nearby Shell Heap Island, the descendants of slaves who have lived by their own traditions for the last three hundred years.

As Martha delves into her work, the voices she thought she left behind start whispering again, and she begins to doubt her recovery. When a grisly murder occurs, Martha finds herself at the center of a perfect storm—and she’s the perfect suspect. Without a soul to vouch for her innocence or her sanity, Martha disappears into the wilderness, battling the pull of madness and struggling to piece together a supernatural puzzle of age-old resentments, broken promises, and cold-blooded murder. She finds an unexpected ally in a handsome young man fighting his own battles. With his help, Martha journeys through a terrifying labyrinth—to find the truth and clear her name, if she can survive to tell the tale.

In The Girl in the Maze, after being treated for Schizophrenia, Martha Covington moves to Amberleen, Georgia. A small town but rich in history, her moving there feels like a fresh start. She takes on a summer internship with the local historical society and is tasked with gathering stories of the residents of Shell Heap Island. As she starts work, she starts hearing voices again, and she starts to doubt if she’s truly recovered from her psychotic breakdown. When a grissly murder occurs, Martha is the ideal suspect. On her own, feeling the pull of madness, she’s forced to solve a supernatural puzzle that stretches across many centuries.

Martha is an engaging, three-dimensional character with many issues, but despite that, the reader easily connects with her. I loved the paranormal angle, and how it all came into play, and the question if she was mad, or if the voices were real. A suspenseful book, well-written, and with a beautiful setting rich in history. I thoroughly enjoyed this supernatural thriller, and recommend it to all fans of the genre.

Book Review: Unholy Bargain by Travis Hallden Holt

UnholyBargain-510Title: Unholy Bargain

Author: Travis Holt

Genre: Supernatural Thriller

Age Group: Adult (18+)

Rating: 4 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

An assassin is at work—one of the best in the trade. His body turned to dust long ago, but his spirit roams the Earth freely, undetectable to the five senses. He stalks his victims waiting for just the right opportunity. Then, in quick succession, he possesses a human host and strikes down his quarry. For a century and a half he has served this way.

Deputy Sheriff Nate Barrington is riding the crest of a new relationship. Kaitlyn Spencer is beautiful, altruistic, enlightened—everything he’s not. She teaches classes in New Age philosophy at her growing school. Nate doesn’t share her spirituality, but the physical passion hasn’t subsided enough for him to care.

Nate’s nirvana quickly unravels when Kaitlyn’s life is threatened on two separate occasions. With no apparent motive or any evidence suggesting collusion, the police are stumped. Even more troubling to Nate, Kaitlyn is eventually convinced she is the target of unseen forces.

A hardheaded pragmatist, Nate isn’t prone to believe that spirits can possess people. As far as he’s concerned, Kaitlyn’s claims of perpetrators possessed by a spirit assassin are on par with comic book stories and have nothing to do with reality, and her esoteric, New Age mumbo jumbo begins to drive a wedge into their relationship. And why Kaitlyn? What secret is she hiding?

Even with the sheriff’s resources at Nate’s disposal, the odds for Kaitlyn’s survival are not in her favor. The true enemy is virtually invisible, and Nate’s conventional police tactics have no effect on the spirit world. Strikes come from anytime, anywhere, and from random, unwittingly manipulated people. Behind it all is a deal the assassin had made with the devil: send Kaitlyn Spencer to an early grave in exchange for a fresh start. For that, the assassin will stop at nothing to uphold his end of an Unholy Bargain.

Unholy Bargain is an unique, entertaining supernatural thriller about the spirit of an assassin who stalks his victims, possesses a human host, and then murdes his victims. Because he’s just a spirit, he can’t be easily detected, and the police is powerless to do anything about it.

Deputy Sheiff Nate is head over heels for his new girlfriend, Kaitlyn Spencer, a beautiful, lovely New Age philosophy teacher. When Kaitlyn’s life is threatened by an unseen force, with no motive or reason to kill her, which stumps both the police and Nate as he desperately wants to protect her – which can get a little tricky when you can’t see your foe. And while Nate will stop at nothing to protect the woman he loves, even if it means slowly coming to terms with how his down-to-earth view isn’t always spot on, the assassin will stop at nothing to kill Kaitlyn…

As you can see from my short recap, the synopsis is awesome, and the premise is refreshing and original. The author does an admirable job of making all characters have interesting personalities, even the villain. It’s definitely not just good vs. evil – it’s a lot more complicated than that, in fact.

At first, I struggled with seeing Kaitlyn and Nate as a couple since they didn’t seem to have that much in common, but the more I read on, the more I realized those differences were what made them work.

I’d highly recommend this book to all fans of supernatural thrillers. I didn’t think it was that scary, but it was definitely a pageturner!

Book Review: Spinner by Michael J. Bowler

25353531Title: Spinner
Author: Michael J. Bowler
Genre: Young Adult, Thriller, Supernatural
Rating: 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by the auhtor in exchange for an honest review.

Fifteen-year-old Alex is a “spinner.” His friends are “dummies.” Two clandestine groups of humans want his power. And an ancient evil is stalking him. If people weren’t being murdered, Alex might laugh at how his life turned into a horror movie overnight.
In a wheelchair since birth, his freakish ability has gotten him kicked out of ten foster homes since the age of four. Now saddled with a sadistic housemother who uses his spinning to heal the kids she physically abuses, Alex and his misfit group of learning disabled classmates are the only ones who can solve the mystery of his birth before more people meet a gruesome end.
They need to find out who murdered their beloved teacher, and why the hot young substitute acts like she’s flirting with them. Then there’s the mysterious medallion that seems to have unleashed something malevolent, and an ancient prophecy suggesting Alex has the power to destroy humanity.
The boys break into homes, dig up graves, elude kidnappers, fight for their lives against feral cats, and ultimately confront an evil as old as humankind. Friendships are tested, secrets uncovered, love spoken, and destiny revealed.
The kid who’s always been a loner will finally learn the value of friends, family, and loyalty.
If he survives…

I have to admit, I accepted Spinner for review because the main character has a disability, and we don’t see that often in YA, especially not in a YA thriller. But I also liked the idea of spinners, the ancient evil, humans out stalking him for his powers, and basically, everything about the book sounded great. I was a little nervous to read it because I had high expectations, but boy, I certainly wasn’t dissapointed.

A spinner is a person with a healing ability. Unfortunately Alex can’t use that to heal himself. He’s stuck to a wheelchair and has been since birth. On top of that he’s in the foster system, and his current foster parent is a sadistic woman who physically abuses the kids in her care. But unfortunately that’s not the end of Alex’s troubles yet. His teacher is murdered, an ancient evil is unleashed, and it’s up to Alex and his classmates, a self-proclaimed group of misfits to find out who is behind the murder and how to stop the unleashed evil before it’s too late.

From the start, this was an amazing story, and it never becomes anything less than amazing. The cast of characters is great, the plot is enthralling, there were so many twists and turns that I had no idea whatsoever as to what would happen next, and the action never slows down. Despite everything that’s happening, there were some hilarious bits too where I even laughed out loud.

If you enjoy YA thrillers with a supernatural edge, then I highly recommend this book.