Wednesday, 28 August 2013

The Good, The Bad and Just Don't Read: Reviews

dear readers,

I read a few romances lately and here is what I thought:

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review).


(Bite Me, Your Grace: Book 1)
Written by Brooklyn Ann 
genre: Historical Paranormal Romance 


On the heels of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, Dr. John Polidori's writes his own ghost story, The Vampyre. Written after a weekend spent writing ghost stories with Lord Byron. The novel hits the ton and begins a new craze and a new crazy.

Ian Ashton - lord of the Vampires in London - already has to dispel rumors of being a creature of the night by doing what vampires supposedly cannot do like standing in front of mirrors and eating garlic. Now with this new book that seems to know more than it should and some crazy loose on the ton - he has to deal with his neighbor Angelica Winthrope who wishes to be the next Mary Shelley.

Angelica wants to write, not marry a Lord. When her mysterious neighbor shows interest in marrying her she does everything to thwart him. Soon the aspiring horror writer and creature of the night marry and that is only the beginning...

I really really enjoyed this humorous paranormal gothic historical romance novel! It has the perfect blend of contemporary humor with Regency history. I myself love Mary Shelly and her novel, Frankenstein. The group she hung around with were great writers themselves and it was interesting to have them be an influence in this book. Lord Byron - can you write gothic without him? This is a great novel if you are not sure about historical romances or paranormal as it gives you a great taste of the genre.


Written by Rexanne Becnel
genre: Historical Romance with Paranormal aspects 


Wynne is a seeress and guardian to 5 orphaned children in the Radnor Forest in Wales. The young children are results of English soldiers raping Welsh women and leaving them pregnant. Cleve, an English Soldier has come to Radnor Forest to search for one of those children who may be the heir to his kingdom. Wynne will do anything to protect the children as Cleve will do the same for his kingdom.

An okay historical romance that was a bit cliched and lacked the sparks between the hero and heroine.


by Rebecca H. Jamison 
genre: modern retelling of Jane Austen's Emma 

DNF (Did not finish)

This novel used too much of the original novel to be unique and was not interesting enough to keep reading.  Read about 45%.  Maybe the modern twist was in the half I did not read. I adore Jane Austen's Emma and Highly recommend you read that instead...or if you are looking for a modern-ish retelling try the movie Clueless.



dear readers,

Here are some reviews for a few mysteries I have read recently.

Written by RICK MOFINA 
genre: suspense, thriller, mystery

3.5 Stars 

Cold case detective Joe Tanner is trying to solve the murder of a young screenwriter and single mother of two.  As he reviews his cases he notices a pattern that might suggest that a serial killer had been on a killing spree at this time and now was dormant.  Using Mark Harding, an ambitious reporter he manages to bring the killer out of retirement and now is on his trail to discover his identity.

Claire Bowen is happy.  She loves being a psychologist and being married to Pilot, Robert Bowen. The only thing she is missing is a child.  She is unable to have children but continues to look at other alternative options.  Lately though she has noticed changes in her happy husband and lets her friend, Julie investigate him.

Robert Bowen loves his new wife and his job.  Everything is being to be perfect until he feels like his wife is changing their life with all this baby talk, and worse the police are taunting him.  The dormant dark side of him is awakening and his next victim is close to home.

Another great mystery by Rick Mofina.  We are aware of the killer's identity early in the novel but Mofina keeps the suspense going with the cat and mouse game and how it will go down.  The reason I gave this book a 3.5 versus a 4 is the ending.  The climax was way too rushed especially as slow as the beginning was.

(J.P. Beaumont: Book One)
Written by J.A. Jance
genre: mystery, suspense

3 Stars 

J.P. Beaumont a homicide detective in Seattle has a new partner and a new case of murder. A young girl is found brutally murdered and the first suspect is the religious group she and her mother belong to. At the little girl's funeral he meets Anne - a beautiful rich woman who is sociologically investigating young victims for her book. As Beaumont and his partner, Peters look into the murder he finds himself drawn to the young woman.

I have read Jance's Ali Reynolds novels and have found to be a good mystery read. I liked this novel well enough and it carried me to the end, but I do not feel the need to continue the series. I feel like I have gotten everything out if the novel that I needed. Beaumont also seems to lack the charm of liking the main character. He seems to have nothing that makes him outstanding. I think listening on audio made me give it a 3 versus maybe a 2

(In Death: Book Seven)
Written by JD ROBB


It is the holiday season and Eve Dallas is bewildered at the task of buying gifts for those she cares about especially her billion dollar husband. As she tries to figure out her shopping a woman is found murdered in her apartment with garland around her throat and a partridge in a pear tree hair clip. As Eve investigates her murder another woman is murder in the same manner and the thing they had in common was they both bought services from a matchmaking company. As the killed targets the lonely looking for love Eve is trying to make it through the festive season which she finds harder than catching a killer.

Loved it. Eve Dallas is a great heroine flawed and insecure yet kick ass. I like the way Robb does not force her to become someone else but rather each novel chips away at her armor. It is done in a way that it is not boring or overly repetitive. Read her novella right after this one as it is almost a continuation piece.

(In Death: Book 7.5)
Written by JD ROBB


The story continues with Eve hot off a case that leaves Peabody indisposed so Roarke signs himself up as her deputy. David Palmer a sadistic killer has escaped prison and is going to kill everyone who had a hand in putting him away. As Eve races to recapture Palmer she is reminded of her past and those that love her in the present.

I perfect story - while I would have liked more background and chasing about i think this novella has the right amount of story and satisfying ending. It is less of a marketing tool (ie cliffhanger prequel that makes you buy the next one in order to know what happens) and more of an appreciative gift for fans. This tides you over (momentarily) until the next Eve Dallas book! 



Tuesday, 27 August 2013

The Bath Quadrille...a perfect read for your bath: Review

dear readers,

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review).

(The Bath Trilogy: Book One)
Written by Amanda Scott
genre: historical romance, cozy

4 Stars

Ned and Sybilla have lived more years apart than together in their married lives.  Neither can let the other lead and when rumors drive them apart Sybilla runs back to her family that relies on her to make it through life.  Ned is disgusted with her family and his own pride keeps him from asking his wife to return.  Sybilla feels her father and siblings need her and her fear that Ned loves another keeps her from Ned.

When Ned's mother reluctantly tells him that Sybilla has been send her letters asking for large amounts of money he goes to Bath to confront his wife.  Seeing one another ignites the once dimmed spark and when Brandon - Sybilla's brother - is injured Ned thrusts his help on her.  As they keep being put together they find it harder to part.

A fun romantic comedy set in historical times.  It's predictable and yet that is what is so great about this novel.  You know what is going to happen but still want to go along for the ride.  Ned is dashing and proud and Sybilla is independent and loving.  Add in eccentric fathers, a meddling aunt, scandalous siblings and you have a great afternoon read.

I will be reviewing the remaining two novels in the series in the coming months.


REVIEW: Grey Mask

dear readers,

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review).

(Miss. Silver Mystery: Book One)
Written by Patricia Wentworth
genre: cozy mystery, mystery


Margot Standing finds out her father has died and not provided for her future as his lawyer claims there is no will.  As Margot has no proof her parents were ever married her claim over her father's estate is now in the hands of her Egbert.  Egbert was not liked by father or daughter seems cavalier over his uncle's death and fortune.  Overhearing a conversation between her cousin and a strange man Margot discovers her life is in jeopardy. They wish to have her removed so there is no obstacle to the Standing fortune.

Meanwhile Charles Moray has returned home to take over this family estate. After his finacee, Margaret breaks off their engagement he travels to the East to rid his mind of her.  Upon his late night visit to his family home he walks upon strangers conspiring the death of a young heiress.  Charles is all ready to call the police when he spies Margaret among them and soon finds himself hiring a woman detective.  As Margaret, Charles and Margot try to figure out the mystery, Miss Maude Silver has it all figured out.

A fun novel from the late 1920s.  If you like the old classic black and white mysteries, old time radio shows or novels like Agatha Christie you are in for a treat.  Wentworth writes an engaging mystery but I wish we knew more about Miss. Silver.  Like Miss. Marple she is not the story but around the mystery.  I cannot wait to see where this series goes.


Thursday, 15 August 2013

Want to follow this blog...

dear readers,

If you wish to follow this blog and know when a review has been posted please follow me on twitter Kris Kaila@anoveladdiction or my facebook page  Feel free to message me or make comments.  If you would like book recommendations please do not hesitate  to ask.  And, if you are an author looking for an honest review please let me know :)


Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Review: (Live Theatre) Twelfth Night

dear readers,

Tonight I saw an adaptation of Shakespeare's Twelfth Night at White Rock Beach (Surrey, BC).  For many years Vanier Park (Vancouver, BC) has hosted Bard on the Beach from May to September.  It has been a place to showcase local talent through the great words of the Bard.  It has evolved over the years to be a bit nicer and definitely a big ticket production.  Surrey, maybe being newer, does not have the reputation of culture and arts.  So when a friend mentioned that there was a theater company named Beach House Theatre putting on Twelfth Night I was pretty stoked.  The play runs for about a week and the tickets sold out within days of going on sale.  My friend being vigilant caught the update that they were releasing tickets for the dress rehearsal and bought us tickets.

The email reminder informs the patron:
1. that parking may be scarce so come early and be prepared to walk about 20 minutes if there is no parking in the lot -- parking was plentiful and really you did not have to park that far away even if you missed parking in the lot.
2. gates will open at 6:45pm -- liar liar pants on fire.  We arrived a little after 6pm and at 6:30 we wanted to confirm the time and were told after 7pm when in reality we were allowed in at 7:15-7:20.  AND then had to wait another 15 minutes to get in the actual tent...I would not have minded except I could not see why they were not ready on time as everything was bare minimum.
3.  to  confirm the gate opening was a trial as the box office was actually within the playhouse grounds versus being a bit out.  This did not have a welcoming feel and made it hard to ask any questions.  But if you are a "celebrity" watcher you can watch the actors walk in about an hour before opening. AND when we asked when we could get in they did not inform us that we must lineup.  After the heat and hunger we went to the concession stand and when we got back there was a line (argh!)
4. Holy smokes were the raffle tickets expensive - $20 and you could only pay cash!  Please note ticket was $19.95.  If you have the cash and the means the money does 100% go to the proceeding year's production and you can win a round trip flight to anywhere in North America.
5. They were fabulous at recycling - they had bins for recycling and rubbish and you could go paperless for the tickets.  Bravo! Once Gates did open you were able to get in fairly efficiently and quickly.
6. The venue is gorgeous and the set up inside is very beach pretty.  They had long tables draped in white table cloths with candles.  It was perfect spot to stand and eat your intermission snack.  The booths were nice set up as was the main tent BUT the seat were hard and not very inviting.  They did provide blankets from the cold (and in my case as a seat plumper) and sunglasses from the sun.  Those were much appreciated.

The play itself was a solid 3.5 out of 5 stars.  The adaption was smooth and was so funny!  A few of the actors could play comedy well and add it with Shakespeare they showed their craft and expertise.  The actor playing the Fool was one of the best I have seen in a long while.  He had great expressions, mannerism, timing and singing talent.  The actor playing Malvolio was brilliant - his facial expressions and harrumphs had the audience in stitches.  The actress playing Olivia was brilliant in being indifferent and fluttering from one "man" to another. The actress playing Viola has great potential.  Her timing for humour was great and her chemistry with Olivia sparked.  Maria, Andrew, Tobey and Fabian were definitely scene stealers and really enhanced the comedy aspect of the play.  The actor playing Sebastian seemed a bit nervous and his performance a bit forced yet he had a likability and charm that made him watchable.  Unfortunately, the actor playing Orsino was a bit horrible. At times it felt like he was doing a parody of a horrible Shakespearean actor.  He overacted in his gestures and the only facial expressions he had was squinting and not squinting.  He paused several times in some passages where I was not sure if he had forgotten his lines or he meant it for his character.  He did not have any chemistry with Olivia or Viola and it was hard believing her love for him.  I think the comedic performances compensate for the lack of romance between Viola Orsino - but I still think Olivia and Viola had the best chemistry.

The performances have sold out for this season but sign up for their emails and I might just see you next year at a performance - I will be the one with a few blankets to make my seat more cushy.


Tuesday, 13 August 2013


dear readers,

I have been busy doing a whole lot of nothing I'm afraid. On Saturday I slept in late as I pretty much did not go to sleep till sunrise. Then spent the day out with the bf and after a few hours of heavy duty pondering we decided on watching a movie. The Campaign starring Will Ferrell was ridiculous but hilarious - as his movies should be. Twelfth Night at my local theatre so I'm counting that as my reading time. It's like watching an audio book being recorded, non?   Okay going to bed before I lose the two readers I do have...

 Sunday was another day I woke up in the afternoon after passing out at 4am. Then on my way home from the bf's I took the longest bleeping route. The bridge to my house was closed for "repair" so I had to take the third closest bridge (second being a toll bridge).  And of course there was construction going on every street I needed. Man I finally get how those hobbits felt....phew!  Where was I now....right then after my journey I sat on the couch watching true crime shows. And today after work I continued that task. Yep, I'm in a it's summer and its too hot to think rut. Tomorrow I'm going to see

Night lovelies.


Saturday, 10 August 2013

Next Book I'm Reading Is...

The Grey Mask 
(Miss. Silver Mysteries: Book One)
By Patricia Wentworth

Review: The Apple Orchard - Susan Wiggs

dear readers,

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review).

The Apple Orchard
(Bella Vista Chronicles: Book One)
Written by Susan Wiggs
genre: contemporary romantic fiction

3.5 Stars

Tess Delaney is stunned to learn that she has a half sister and half an inheritance to Bella Vista Orchard. Dominic Rossi, sexy Italian banker and executor of Tess' grandfather's estates, pops the news to Tess that her grandfather is ill and she could come into money. Tess is blown away to learn that her secretive mother has never mentioned a sister and grandfather to her especially since she asked constantly about her absent father.  

When Tess goes to Bella Vista she learns that her sister, Isobeljust learned about her existence but is waiting with open arms. Just as she is hit with the news of a new family Dominic informs them the Orchard is in big financial trouble.  Lovely cook, Isobel buries her denial in baking and cooking as Tess goes on the hunt to save her new family.

Dominic, the big bad banker, joins in the search as they try to locate something that could stop the foreclosure and finds himself falling for the Irish girl with a smile that melts his once broken heart.  As they explore her grandfather Magnus's past during WWII  they may have found what they need...

As an only child I must say I was intrigued by this story just imagining what it would be like knowing you had a sibling out there you never knew about.  I think Tess' reaction to all of this was realistic but Isobel seemed too accepting. Without isobel's perspective it was hard to figure out her motivation. Through Tess' eyes we see her as someone set in her ways and if something rocks the boat she denies it by putting all her energy in cooking. I think we will get a better sense of her in the next book but for those that like to read books as a standalone might be disappointed in her lack of characterization.

I liked the dynamics of mother and daughter relationship between Shannon and Tess but it was harder to get a sense of Shannon and her mother. The past was brought up a lot in this novel but failed to use it characterization.  I saw the past as a plot device and even Annalise was more of a plot device than a real character.

There was some mystery but tended to be revealed instead of unraveled.  The treasure hut aspect was fun but predictable as foreshadowing came off strong.  I did like the novel but it was more of a set up of the series. I would recommend this to Wiggs' fans and those that like a uncomplicated read.


Wednesday, 7 August 2013


dear readers,

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review).

(Will Trent: Book Seven)
Written by Karin Slaughter
genre: Thriller; suspense, mystery

4 Stars 

Lena is back and in trouble again...her team was involved in a raid that injured two police officers and now she and her husband are attacked at home.  Will is undercover and finds himself on a lookout for the attack on Lena and Jared.  Sara comes to Nell's aid as Jeffery's proxy and her anger over Lena's part in Jeffery's murder bubbles up.  As Will and Lena search for Big Whitey Sara is just trying to get breathe. 

I was not pleased that Lena was back...yet, she makes a good foil for a story.  Like many in the novel I was waiting for to suffer the consequences.  Slaughter has a way of not just writing villains but also good yet flawed characters.  Lena is a police officer who wants to do good and justice but she thinks differently and her unresolved mental issues some times sways her to the wrong.  Then we have a heroine like Sara - doctor and coroner - who for the most part stays on the right path.  Putting these two women together sparks fire.  

The case of unmasking and finding Big Whitey was exciting and kept me flipping pages while Lena and the raid had me skimming.  It was not till the end of the raid flashbacks that it becomes interesting. Overall this novel, in the Will Trent series, is worth the read and will keep you up at night.


Book Club Tonight!

dear readers,

Once every month I get together with my book family to discuss books, movies, tv shows, family, friends, work, politics, food, my weird obsession of defending Angelina Jolie and finally the book of the month.  These four women are more than former co-workers and family friends but my support system. Without them getting over my friend's death and recently my grandmother's passing, getting through bad jobs and university, break ups and dating, family issues and facing my own anxieties would not have been possible. Over coffee and fabulous food they set me straight and give out hugs even when I think I do not need hugs. They are my supporters and my biggest fan. I may not see them a lot but what they know only a few others in my life do. So when I told them about this blog and how I wanted to be more serious in my reviews they said "that is great and we will help you." 

I want to blog but I need to do a great job because there at a group of fabulous women who believe I can do this. I may be a bit slow on reviews (I promise to post the Unseen review tomorrow) but I am determined to write posts every day.  I will become success because I will work hard.  I will make it because I have great friends -my book family, my book soul mates and boyfriend there cheering me along the way and steadying me when I start to falter. I will share monthly what book we are reading, thoughts on th book and other brilliant musings :)

By the way, this month we read News from Heaven: Stories from Bakerton by Jennifer Haigh (review to come) ;)

Night lovelies :)


Monday, 5 August 2013

I literally just finished...

dear readers,

Karin Slaughter's newest novel in the Will Trent series, Unseen.  Wow.  Just wow.  I read straight through the last half of the book and just realized the time. I have to get to bed as I have work tomorrow so will write a proper review tomorrow night. I will say that this is one novel I have pros and cons about and maybe by the time finish my write-up I will know what to rate it.

Night night lovelies!


BC Long Weekend

dear readers,

Since I have been off of work Friday night I have read only 50% of Unseen by Karin Slaughter. While the book has my attention and I'm finding hard to put down I have been busy with hanging out with my very adorable boyfriend. That's the thing about finding someone who you love spending time...the lack of time for other things. Usually on date nights I would be home watching my shows and reading...on weekends if I did not have special plans I would watch tv and read...(noticing a pattern?) and on weeknights after I shower and eat it was more tv and reading.  Sure I spent time with my family and friends but they have their own significant other so reading for me was a great escape from my lack of a partner.  Now after meeting the bf I get to live out some of the contemporary romances I read. On weekends we go out watch random shows, talk and get to know one another.  It does not mean I have stopped reading it just means I can put some of that reading to practice. I will miss reading a book in a day or two but I will have the bf to keep me distracted. Tomorrow he will be flying small scale helicopters (helis) so Unsern will be read and reviewed...fingers crossed. 

Night all :)


Sunday, 4 August 2013

Review: Home to Whiskey Creek

dear readers,

(I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review).

Home To Whiskey Creek
(Whiskey Creek: Book Four)
Written by Brenda Novak
Genre: contemporary romance

 Wow! Novak has been steadily bringing emotions and tough issues to Whiskey Creek since the second book, When Snow Falls.  Again with her newest novel we are hit with difficult issues and left wondering what would we do if we were in that situation.  I really love this series and would highly recommend this to any of Jodi Picoult, Robyn Carr, Susan Wiggs or Barbara Delinsky fans.

Addie returns home to care for her ailing grandmother who raised her while her mother chased men.  Addie has not returned since she graduated from high school as she has has a secret that could tear the town apart.  Being back has put her in danger as there are some who are afraid she willl spill her secrets. Noah, the mayor's son and her old crush  knows someone is keeping Addie from feeling safe in Whiskey Creek and he will do anything to keep her safe.  Noah is also trying to figure whether his old friend Baxter is in love with him and how he will let him down without ruining their friendship.

I love that Novak takes the genre of contemporary romance and is not afraid to bring real issues to her characters.  While you have the excitement of boy and girl meeting and the journey of them falling in love you also have the real problems you sometimes don't see this genre.  Homosexuality and gang rape are two issues that the characters are faced with. Instead of putting a damper on the romance for me it brings out the contemporary issues and makes the romance more realistic.

I highly recommend this series from start to present book...I cannot wait for the next one. 


Friday, 2 August 2013

I apologize...AGAIN!!!

dear readers,

I have gotten my act together, I swear, and will be revamping my blog so that there will be daily posts.  Please let me know what you like and don't like.

I am currently reading Karin Slaughter's new novel, Unseen in the Will Trent series.  I have received this copy through NetGalley by Random House and will be reviewing this soon.

Last night I read Slaughter's novella Busted, which is the prequel to Unseen, and enjoyed the story but was left wanting more of Will and was disappointed that Sara wasn't even in the story.  The short story opens with Will in a convenience store in Georgia getting a drink when all hell breaks loose. A man tries to rob the store but then a cop is shot, the clerk goes missing and the any one's guess.  Will, a GBI agent, is undercover as Bill the criminal and soon finds himself involved in a crime with twists and turns.

A great prequel to UNSEEN...a few chapters in.