Waking the Dreamer by K. Aten

This story is told in first person and completely from Jules/Julia’s point of view. She is a delightful character so it’s no hardship being in her head, literally, for the entire book.

The author has created an epic journey that had me reflecting on the future, and all that might entail.  The thought of having to wear suits because temperatures are out of control, and breathers for air supply, wasn’t too far out there not to be believable, which is something I struggle with in sci-fi stories.

The budding relationship between Niko and Jules was just as epic. I loved them together, and while this story is more of an adventure than a romantic interlude, there’s a perfect amount of spice that will appeal to readers who enjoy a bit of heat.

As per the blurb, the story ends with a twist. For a while I thought that twist was Niko’s mother. I was sorely mistaken. I feel readers will either love the ending, or perhaps feel let down. I fall into the latter category, hence four stars and not five.

Despite my misgivings in regards to the ending, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this story and am sure many readers will find themselves riveted to the pages.

4 stars

 

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 If you would like to purchase Waking the Dreamer please follow the link below:

Amazon US

Amazon AU

Amazon UK

 

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Party Wall by Cheyenne Blue

Author Synopsis

From the moment Freya looks in the window of the brash, new sex shop in Grasstree Flat she knows it will be nothing but trouble. For a start, it will clash with her own new-age store next door. And she’s right. Outgoing newcomer Lily begins to intrude on Freya’s well-ordered life. Freya’s friends, lifestyle, and even her cat are all affected by Lily’s magic touch. Even Freya’s yoga classes rub shoulders with Lily’s sexual-expression workshops. Lily stands for everything Freya has lost in life—playfulness, spontaneity, delight in the physical, and sex. But does Lily have more in common with Freya than the wall that divides them?

 

Dee’s Review

This story is told in third person and from both heroine’s point of views. Given both Freya and Lily are such complex characters, it’s the perfect style of narration.
I got to know both ladies extremely well, and sure, Freya is a prickly character but I understood her, and could see that beneath the hard exterior she was a good person. I’m so so happy Lily recognized that in Freya as well. I get that a number of people possibly won’t understand why Lily persevered, I love that she did, bless her.
Freya’s friend, Carly, plays a big part in this story. I liked her initially but then she irked me. At times, I felt like she played Freya off against Lily and vice versa. I could’ve done without the saga between her and Andy. It rubbed me the wrong way and for reasons I can’t go into without spoilers.
I loved the setting, Aussie, and appreciated reading terms I’m familiar with.
A day after finishing this book, I picked it up wanting to read more, only to remember I’d already turned the last page. The fact these ladies got under my skin – they’re real, I swear – is what made this story a winner for me.
Very enjoyable read indeed.
4.5 stars

 

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Party Wall is available from 20th of September from the following vendors:

Ylva Publishing

Amazon US

Amazon AU

 

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The Setup by Adan Ramie

The Setup is the first book in the Moving On Series

Author Synopsis

Rachel’s two best friends have had it with her non-existent love life.

Divorced from an abusive husband and with two children in tow, she and her best friends have been living together in harmony for over a year. And while they love each other dearly, there is something none of them have in their lives: romance.

So when her friends convince Rachel to sign up on an online dating site to look for a good woman, they have no idea what kind of antics will ensue.

Can Rachel forget her painful past and find a lasting relationship, or will her lack of trust destroy something great before it can begin?

 

Dee’s Review

This story is told in third person and completely from Rachel’s point of view. I’m not always a fan of singular point of view, however, it worked extremely well for this story. I found myself able to relate to Rachel’s character from the get-go so it was no hardship to be in her head throughout.
I may, or may not, be familiar with online dating and the trials that can and often do go hand in hand with hooking up with a virtual stranger. A couple of the situations were a little scary and one down right funny. Okay scratch that, it was scary-funny.
Rachel’s best friend is a gay man and another very likeable character. Haley, her other friend, the third of the trio sharing a house, was the least fleshed out of all three. I didn’t care for her one bit, and couldn’t have cared less if she’d dropped off the page.
Recently divorced, Rachel is trying to find her footing and finally act on her desires to be with a woman. With her ex nowhere in sight, she has to rely on her less than stellar parents to look after her two children.
I had an inkling who Rachel would end up dating but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment of this story. I urge readers to give this one a try, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

4 Stars

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If you would like to purchase The Setup please follow the links below:

Amazon US

Amazon AU

Amazon UK

 

Freedom to Love by Ronica Black

I can’t believe this is the first book I’ve read by this author, but the best thing about that fact is I have many more to look forward to reading.

 

Author Synopsis

Brynn Williams is out of prison, no thanks to Sergeant Kat Vander, who arrested her four years earlier. But Brynn is hopeful for a new future and excited to see her sister, who pulls up in a stolen car, high as a kite. Brynn feels used and trapped as they drive back to more family drama. But something happens on the way home, testing not only Brynn’s core as a human being, but her loyalty to her family as well.

Sergeant Kat Vander is one hell of a cop. She turns heads and leaves suspects shaking in their boots. So when she and her partner are ambushed and shot, the department is up in arms. But more surprising is who helped them after the attack. Brynn Williams belongs to the town’s most troubled family. She helped Kat, but now she’s on the run. Can Kat find her, and more importantly fight her feelings for a known criminal?

 

Dee’s Review

I thoroughly enjoyed this story.

It wasn’t so much the convict/officer troupe that pulled me in and held me captive, but how well this story highlights the plight of someone whose character is called into question due to association.

Sergeant Kat Vander is a likeable character. The side story of her downed partner added depth to the plot.

However, my heart went out to Brynn. The stigma of her family followed her around like a death sentence, more accurately a prison sentence. Just because her family were known criminals she was assumed guilty by association. Having a close friend who has faced the same prejudice, I found myself able to relate.

And, of course, the reader has to wonder how on earth there can ever be a happy ever after, and if Brynn will ever find true love.

Verdict – highly recommended.
4 Stars

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If you would like to purchase Freedom to Love please follow the link below:

Bold Strokes Books

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon Aus

 

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Journey to You by AJ Adaire

If you’re looking for a story of love, hope and survival, you can’t go wrong by grabbing a copy of Journey to You.

 

Author Synopsis

What do you do if you are one of the few who remain alive after a mysterious, flu-like virus claims most of the global population? This is a question Kim Robins and Peri Henderson have to answer when the world changes and society falls apart.
Violent gangs of looters make it unsafe to remain in the city. Hoping to improve their chances for survival, Kim and Peri decide to hike into the remote forest area of Main.
Dangerous circumstances along the trail cause the women to join forces with another hiker and her dog. The longtime friends and their new companions set off on a daunting trek filled with both menacing and kindhearted survivors.
With evidence of the illness everywhere they go, will this journey bring each of the women the happiness and safety she seeks?

 

Dee’s Review

This story is set in April, in the not too distant future. An epidemic hits and the world ceases to exist as this cast of blue eyed characters know it. I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned eye colour in a review before, but for this story, it’s a vital factor.
Thankfully, most animals also survived the pandemic.
If you’ve ever envisioned a life full of crime, hate, and starvation after such a catastrophic event, this story will give you hope it doesn’t have to be that way. Sure these ladies encounter some unpleasant human-beings along their journey, but, for the most part, the population is self-surviving so there’s little need for violence.
Paige, Peri, Allie, and co. remain healthy by drinking herbal tea, catching and eating fresh fish, canning produce, milking goats, making butter and cheese, and of course trading goods.
Peri and Paige are wonderful leading ladies, their courtship is tenuous for various reasons and because of that, was believable to me. I found Kim a little wishy-washy and never came to care for her, but such is life, literally.
Zeke, bless him, added a lot of emotional depth to this story. I really hoped him and Allie would get together, BUT what unfolded went a little beyond belief for me. I wish that ‘part’ had gone to our ladies.
Overall, I enjoyed this story and would definitely read more by this ‘no longer new to me’ author.
If you’re looking for a dark depressing story, you won’t find it here. If you’re looking for a story of love, hope and survival, you can’t go wrong by grabbing a copy of Journey to You.

3.5 stars

 

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If you would like to purchase Journey to You please follow the link below:

AJ Adaire Books

Amazon US

Bella Books

 

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