Sunday, November 29, 2015

The Glass Beacon by John Day

Heat Rating1/2

Karl Strom is a brilliant engineer whose family is hedging their bets by having a foot in each door in order to survive the war with their wealth. Which is why he is working on the German side creating a beacon that is undetectable except by the bombs they are intended to direct to targets.

Karl’s mission is to go home to England with a team of four trained operatives to test the beacon and then train others to set them. But the minute Karl and his team set foot on English soil anything that can go wrong does with betrayal from within and without. He starts to wonder if he will survive long enough to take care of his personal mission as well.

First I need to say I know this book wasn’t on my TBR list but when John asked me to read for him I felt that I owed him because back July I was in the middle of promoting two of his other books only to have it pre-empted to my families very great tragedy and lose. So I hope you all will understand my need to read and review this book and I have every intention of writing reviews for those two books that I never got to write. SO thank you John for your wife and your friendship and understanding it has meant a great deal to me and my family.

I have been sitting here thinking about what I like most about The Glass Beacon and was beginning to think I would be able to pin point a favorite part because the whole book was an amazing read, but as I was thinking I realized that it was the way Karl/Peter interacted with his sister. I think if there is anyone that the master spy loved more than that two timing hoochi Helga, who doesn’t deserve him, it would be his sister. But then given how he banged Anna I don’t see him and Helga lasting for life. I saw some marked improvement in how John wrote his bedroom scenes as well as they were tastefully done and definitely not clinical and one or two had me wanting to read them to my husband because I am positive he would love how they were written as well. The ending was epic and if I could elaborate more I would but unfortunately I would be giving away the ending but know this John Day I will be sending you and email about that ;) As for rating I would love to give The Glass Beacon a 5-star rating but the edits I find though minimal were still enough to dock a star from the rating which sucks given how great this book was.

Book Cover Rating

Book Blurb Rating

Link For The Glass Beacon

Book's Blurb
A book for men & women.

Under the direct orders of the Fuhrer, Karl Strom is tasked to design and plant secret devices in Britain.
He trains his team of misfits in Alderney, the Channel Island nearest England. Karl’s worst fear is confirmed during a lustful encounter under the stars.

Deeply in love with Helga, the Oberst’s girlfriend, he says goodbye to her as he sets off with his team on the suicide mission, only to discover her heart-wrenching secret.

The members of his team, each have their own personal agenda and the bonds they develop between them are tested as they experience love and face death as the story unfolds.

Betrayed at every turn, Karl plans to find those who betrayed him and wreak terrible revenge on them.
The obsessive and ruthless Karl Strom completes his official mission and now he must commit the perfect murder to right a terrible wrong and in so doing, reveal his true self.

Finally, he must return to Helga and end the Raven, whoever it turns out to be.

Will the final piece of his plan fall into place, or fall apart as a shattered dream?

Monday, November 23, 2015

Nightingale Way: An Eternity Springs Novel (Eternity Springs #5) by Emily March

Heat Rating

Cat lost her baby and her husband five years ago. Now her husband is back and determined to protect her from the danger her blog article put her in. Granted her mother was behind her favorite spy kid knapping her and taking to a home she never even knew he had even when they were married. In there lies the demise of their marriage, he was always at her head spy mom’s beck and call but never there for her even when she needed him most much to her mother’s delight.

Jack wants Cat back in his life but he just keeps screwing it up and when she leaves his protection and his home he ends up in an accident that end with her having to care for him and giving him a chance to woo her and her a chance to help him with his depression. When her parents show up and her mom send him on a new mission and a promotion when he returns, Cat decides enough is enough and she leaves so he can do the job he loved more than he loved her. When he realizes what she has done he realizes that he loves her more than the job and he can be a hero and her man but how will he convince her.

I have to tell you that chapter 13 is the best chapter in the whole book and it would be well worth your time and money just to buy the book for that one chapter. Other than that the book is just ok and it wasn’t even on my reading list, I was just looking for books to add to my TBR list but given where I am in my life this book really spoke to me. To be honest I was not going to finish this book and put it in my ‘could not get into’ page, but then I suddenly connected with Cat when she went to visit her daughter’s grave and I get why since I visit my daughter’s memorial every chance I get (this part is hard and makes little sense and I am sorry). The author did an amazing job of portraying Cat’s pain and its intensity and I want to thank her for that and for that reason I an giving this book a 3 star rating because even though it was well written and I could connect with the main character and I thought chapter 13 rocked I still felt it was just an ok book and not one I would ever read again.

Book Cover Rating

Book Blurb Rating

Link For Nightingale Way: An Eternity Springs Novel

Book's Blurb
Eternity Springs is a magical place where hearts come to heal—with a little help. As Emily March’s beloved series continues, a broken marriage finds new wings to fly.

Dark, brooding Jack Davenport hides his secrets well, never telling his wife about the dangers of his job, never sharing his thoughts or worries . . . never sharing himself. After tragedy strikes, their marriage shatters. Now a threat to Catherine Blackburn’s life brings her back into his—and gives them a second chance.

A reporter whose most recent investigation has ignited a national controversy and put her in harm’s way, Cat thinks she can handle herself. So when Jack grabs her off the street and sweeps her to his home above Eternity Springs, she’s furious.

In the warm sanctuary of the Eternity Springs community, Jack and Cat face the heartache that drove them apart. But can they find the courage to pick up the pieces of a shattered love?

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Wrath (New Species #6) by Laurann Dohner


Heat Rating

Wrath is positive he will never be able to be with a woman again, not after the perverts of Mercile used their masturbation machine to rape him while forcing him to watch naked women play with themselves to steal his sperm to sell. He hasn’t been free long enough to shake those memories and when he meets his Lauren he wants her so bad he can taste it but his fear of hurting her because of his flash back prevents him from claiming her.

While having dinner with her best friend, Lauren receives a call from her boss, ordering her to show a property. She wants to make rent so she goes and what thanks does she get? She gets nabbed by New Species who thinking she is boinking one of her co-workers whom she happens to think is lower than pond scum only nobody believes her right away but she is more than willing to help them capture her scumbag co-worker, especially since is gives her more time to spend with Wrath, the damaged New Species that makes her heart pound and her blood boil with his touch.

Laurann Dohner rocks it out again with Wrath and the word she has created with her New Species series which is my new all-time favorite. Damn the oral sex though not totally graphic was steaming up my tablet so bad I thought it would need to be stuck in the freezer since a cold shower would ruin it. Laurens abduction thought terrifying had some seriously funny moments thanks to her quick wit and smart ass mouth. Of course there is the awesomely amazing best friend Amanda who comes a crossed as desperate but who really just wants a solid loving relationship and I hope she gets it. I really thought it was cool how Shadow would explain things to Lauren when Wrath was too emotional to express himself and then there is the more serious part of this story and that is the repercussion on what happened to Wrath that has him concerned for Laurens safety and watching the struggle he goes through as gets closer to her is sweet and amazing to read.

I want to say for the record that I love this book and will probably read it for a third time at a later date but even though it is a five-star book in my opinion the edits yet again have dropped the rating but thankfully only but one star.

Favorite Quotes
This round there were several and as I try really hard to keep the quotes down to two or three it was really hard to pick which three I should use but I did choose and they rock.

“I’ll tell them you joined a nudist colony that worships women with big boobs. I’ll say a dozen sex-starved naked men grabbed you in a van and you’re doing the whole free love thing. They’ll enjoy that. When they start to bitch at me about how come I didn’t try to stop you, I’ll just tell them I was looking out for you by buying you a don’t-come-a-knocking-if-the-van-is-rocking bumper sticker. I’ll remind them how supportive I am.”—Amanda

“I’d rather die and I can promise you, if you unzip near me you’ll need a trauma surgeon after I am done with you.”—Lauren

“You’re really pathetic and repulsive. I can totally understand why a troll like you would have to lock a woman up and threaten to starve her to try to make her touch your ugly ass. No thanks. I’d rather eat my shoe.”--Lauren

Book Cover Rating
Given the number of shower scenes this cover really fits.

Book Blurb Rating

Link For Wrath

Book's Blurb
Wrath volunteers to live and work outside Homeland, where he'll once again be confined in a small space with other males. He was subjected to horrific abuse and conditioning and forced to view endless sex tapes of human females while chained to Mercile's perverted machines. Wrath knows he's too dangerous and emotionally damaged to ever be with a female.

Lauren has just been detained by three big, buff, well-armed men-New Species. One of them really catches her eye. He's tall, sexy and . . . her new roommate, apparently. Having never met a man this spectacular, she decides to taste every inch of his amazing body. Wrath is definitely open to that plan. The sex is incredible and he gives her everything she needs-but he'll only go so far. Something is holding him back.

Lauren has to make him unleash his desire and Wrath has to get past his fear if the couple wants any chance at a future together.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

INTERVIEW: John Day Author of The Glass Beacon

John Day
John Day stopped in to tell us about his latest creation The Glass Beacon which hit Amazon and Smashword on November 15th. We had a nice conversation and I am eager to share it with everyone.

Links to The Glass Beacon

(LL) Hello John, welcome back to Laura Lu’s.

(JD) It is a delight for me to be speaking with you again Laura. Your wide range of followers heeded your reviews on my earlier books and it is to your credit that so many read my work. As you know, last April, when you launched Fugitive for me, it went to number 9 in the amazon top 100. It is still doing well, but with my time taken up with writing, I have neglected marketing, so my name is not spreading far enough. Still, with what I have in store for my readers, they will have a good read over Christmas.

(LL) I have been digging into your latest book and I notice that it is very different from your adventures with Max and Carla, will we see them again in the future?

(JD) It is possible, but my preference is to write different types of thrillers. The Glass Beacon is a single plot, albeit a long one and involves several main characters running parallel through the story. My next book, being written now, is a simple crime thriller called I Lost My Wife and is about a police detective hell bent on proving the husband has somehow done away with his wife. However, that plays out entirely differently as the story develops and it will be another thriller with a big difference. Only yesterday I was hit by another idea and that will be an adventure thriller. There are no spies, no criminals, just … well wait and see!

(LL) Where did your idea for The Glass Beacon come from?

(JD) Only another writer will understand this twisted logic. First, I was on a very long cruise, there was fantastic food and lots to drink, I was probably a bit tipsy. I decided to write a story involving my home Island, Alderney, in the Channel Islands. It was one of the islands in Hitler’s Atlantic wall. Then came the title, The Glass Beacon. So how could I make anything from that? Well as it turns out, a tale that most of my beta readers just couldn’t put down and their copies were passed to friends, and so on, because they had never read such a gripping tale. These people are avid readers of anything they can get. Although it is set in WW2 and the 4 spies are German, doing their dastardly deed in England, the reader will soon forget that and it becomes a battle between them and MI5. Actually, there is so much more going on than that, so the surprises don’t stop. Also, thrown into the mix is romance. So, it all came together very easily and astonishingly well.
Fort Clonque where Pieter stayed with Helga and Oberst

(LL) Is that why you chose the World War II time frame for this story instead of World War I or making up a new future war?

(JD) The WW2 history of Alderney, its location to England and the happenings in that war all fitted perfectly, it was just made for the story.

(LL) What was Carole’s reaction to the writing bug hitting you while on your cruise?

(JD) It was not a problem; she loves reading and had her Kindle Fire, so she was sorted! We still went out on trips and did everything together, no holiday fun was wasted.

(LL) Given that you already live on the island staring in The Glass Beacon and you are clearly familiar with it history, was there any addition research that need to done for the story line?

(JD) Yes there was. I only had a general knowledge of the war history, so there was some research done. However, this story is fiction, not a guidebook of Alderney or intended to be historically accurate, any more than Eye of the Needle or any war movie. I made this quite clear at the start of the book. However, I was overjoyed to discover that so many facts fell into place and just fitted together like it could have actually happened. Even now, I wonder if it did.

As my wife often says, if it is meant to be, it will work out easily!

(LL) I have read a lot of books and I have noticed that most authors maintain the same tenor from one book to next with very little deviation, no matter the story line. After reading your Max and Carla adventures then reading The Glass Beacon I notice there is a very different tenor in the telling of The Glass Beacon than there was in your Max and Carla books. Did you deliberately do that or is this a part of your evolution as a writer? How else do you feel you have evolved as a writer?

(JD) It is both actually. Max & Carla were two oddball characters who lived for the adrenalin buzz. They thrived on ingenious but credible escapes and their adventures took place all over the world in exotic locations.

The Glass Beacon was a deadly serious affair. Both the Germans and British were very smart and equally ruthless in their drive to win the war. Living conditions were awful, and the hangman’s noose was just a mistake away. Romance, love or lust was fleeting and had to be grabbed, full on. They could be dead tomorrow. Overall, no room for idle chatter and the frivolity found with Max & Carla. The Glass Beacon did provide a fantastic opportunity for me to go deep into the characters of the key players, and in this story, there are many. Every person played a crucial part in the mission as it eased forward, step by step. There is no “John Wayne” super hero winning the war, single handed. My readers tell me that they were there in their imagination with the German spies and MI5. They could easily visualize their surroundings; feel their unhappiness, despair, paranoia and the romance felt all the better for it. Some readers went as far as to say they could even smell the surroundings. The characters speak differently, you can even tell who is speaking, just from their phrasing.

A different feel for a different story, surely that is what story telling is all about. Putting the reader in the scene.

I also tried hard to make the book equally enjoyable for women as well as men. Apparently, I succeeded according to my reviewers.

I do believe my writing style has evolved enormously and still is evolving. Wait till I Lost My Wife is published, different again.

Raven's pipe pointing to France and cliff Pieter was thrown from
(LL) The Glass Beacon has a number of characters and granted I have only met a few and have already found my least favorite, do you have a least favorite character?

(JD) I expect it will be Sir Philip Sterne that people hate most. I based the general character on Sydney Greenstreet, a brilliant character in the Humphrey Bogart films of the time. I added bullying and a brilliant intellect to the man. I honestly believe that MI5 would need a man of that type to squeeze every last drop of performance out of the men working under him. British agents were brilliant and under immense pressure, but they would have to be driven by such a man. The fact that he was capable of such a terrible deed, in the book, is entirely credible. You only need to read the daily news to know this.

(LL) I am seriously leaning towards Helga being my least favorite she just seems false and I have only just met her. Maybe it is the way she seems to be seducing by making the guy think he is doing the seduction. Guess I will reserve judgment for after I get to know her better.

(JD) I intended Helga to have controversial aspects to her character. Your reasons for disliking her are as valid as another who sees her as a victim of circumstance. Perhaps her admission that it all started out as a bit of harmless fun was true. After all, the Oberst was not a great lover. Then she believed she was in love at a vulnerable time and would probably never see Pieter Kline again. Did she have a dark secret? Was she Raven? Did she decide not to acknowledge Pieter when he returned from the mission, for the benefit of the Oberst. Perhaps she wanted to speak to Pieter alone and tell him she still loved him, but never got the chance. Perhaps she was a shallow bitch. It gives the reader the opportunity to choose their own interpretation and all are valid.

Do not forget Horst! None of the team liked him and he had no qualms about killing. However, there was another surprising side to him, so perhaps the reader will have a strong opinion about him.

(LL) How about a favorite character

I loved writing about the women, so it is a close call between Anna who is a delightfully scheming little vixen, Jane who is part of MI5’s honey trap and perhaps oddly, Cathy. I just couldn’t help but care for her and I am pleased Peter was there to do it for me. Of course, Peter Stone (aka Karl Strom and Pieter Klein Code name Glass) Is the main character, but I believe I managed to prevent him overpowering the impact of the others.

(LL) Do you have a favorite scene in the story and why is it your favorite?

(JD) That is such a hard question to answer! I had to discuss it with my wife before answering and I am sure readers will face the same dilemma, because there are so many memorable and stirring scenes. Carole says her most memorable one was when they crossed the channel. Then she added, and the getting ashore and … And so it went on. I agree with her, but perhaps the one that does it for me is when Horst has to make the decision to admit to Jane, (the MI5 honey trap) that he is or is not one of the 4 German spies. She genuinely loves Horst, but she has a job to do. Horst is blindly in love with Jane and when you read that small part of the story, I think you will see why I had a tear in my eye, when I wrote it.

(LL) Will there be a sequel to The Glass Beacon?

(JD) No, that will be evident from the book. Anyway, my readers deserve better than formulaic story telling. I want to be known as the author who can thrill, surprise and guarantee the next book will be even better. There are so many ideas that come to me, I pride myself on coming up with stories that will entertain the reader and leave them craving for the next thriller from John Day.

John's Carole
(LL) Here is my last question, I know Carole is your biggest fan but when she edits your books for you I am wondering if she harder on you then anyone else who edits your books?

(JD) Actually, she is the only person who does the editing. It is a great working relationship because she says what she thinks, based on her wide reading experience and we get to discuss the best way to achieve the answer. When I see her working away, and it might take 10 minutes to rework a sentence, I pray that our readers will enjoy the story so her hard work and dedication is not wasted. I write for the pleasure of it, for her it is a labor of love.

(LL) Thanks again for coming to visit with me. I really enjoy our conversations and hope that you will visit again as you are always welcome.

(JD) It has been a great pleasure Laura and I thank you for inviting me. I always enjoy your probing questions.

John and Carole on the cruise that started his latest book The Glass Beacon