Monday, February 24, 2014

Review: The Dark Light of Day


Title: The Dark Light of Day
Author: T.M Frazier
Publication Date: September 15, 2013
Source: Booktrope Publishing
Summary (from Goodreads): Warning: This is not your typical romance. The story of Abby & Jake contains disturbing situations, graphic violence, sex, rape, strong language, drug use, and all types of abuse.

Abby has been through hell and has survived one of the most brutal childhoods imaginable…barely.

To the outside world she's just a loner with an attitude.

When her grandmother dies in a tragic explosion, Abby is left with questions-and nothing else.

Homeless, sleeping in a junkyard, and on the run from a system that has failed her over and over again, she meets Jake, a tattooed blue-eyed biker with secrets that will rival her own.

Two broken souls that can't be healed. They can't be saved.

Abby & Jake must reveal to one another their most guarded secrets and discover if they can embrace the darkness those secrets hold-and the darkness within themselves.

If they can accept one another for who they really are, they might be able to learn that love isn’t always found in the light.

*stand alone novel, HEA in a twisted kind of way, no cliffhangers, no sequel.

I was a little worried when I started this book that it would be too “high school” considering the female lead is only seventeen.

I was wrong—and very happy about that because I love this book. It starts off with a POV from our hero, Jake, and a brief little backstory on him. At first I thought we would see a POV from both the hero and heroine with each new chapter. But I was once again surprised. Jake’s POV only happens twice in the book; for the prologue and the epilogue. And I gotta say, I like how the author pulled that off. So let’s start with a little review of our feisty red-headed girl.

I totally pictured Emma Stone as this girl. No idea why since she’s never really played a dark character before but that’s the image that kept popping into my head. Abby Ford has lived through some dark things in her young life. And I mean dark things. This book is not for the faint of heart when it comes to reading about child abuse. The only place she has ever felt safe and loved is with her Nan and then suddenly her world is shattered once again. Alone with a “huge chip on her shoulder and a tongue sharper than a draw full of knives”, she’s once again alone, hiding from CPS and doing everything she can to forget how shitty her life is. It’s in one of these wallowing states that we’re introduced to Owen, maybe the only person Abby considers a “friend.”

Owen seemed like a really great guy at first. I really liked how he didn’t push her boundaries—because you know a girl like that has some serious fucked up boundaries—and how he genuinely seemed to care for her. But all isn’t as it seems with Own. At. All. I mean seriously, this dude…I don’t even really have words for how twisted his shit is. I. Hate. Owen. I need to leave it at that or else I’ll go into this huge rant that will give away HUGE spoilers, but just trust me when I say that this is a character that you root for to meet a bloody demise.

One night while sleeping in her Nan’s old truck that happens to be locked up at the local mechanics shop is when our two star crossed lovers meet…and not in a very star crossed lovers’ type of way. Enter Jake Dunn. Ah Jake. I. Love. Jake. Steve Burton is my Jake, and anyone who watches General Hospital will totally understand why I compare his former character on there (Jason Morgan) to Jake Dunn. Yes, I love the motorcycle riding, leather wearing, tattoo covered hit man. Jake is the right mixture of bad ass and softy and his love and loyalty for Abby is deeply shown in his actions. Now, I’m not saying I approve of what he does, but I get it and I feel his actions are justified. Oh, yeah, they are justified—big time.

Books rarely surprise me; I can figure out the twists pretty easily most of the time. But there was a part in this one that did and I think that made me love it more. It’s so hard for me to try and explain why it surprised me without getting into details and spoiling it all! I can say it happens in an orange orchard, when Jake is talking to Abby about his “first”. I totally thought he was speaking of his mom at first... “I want to choose a beautiful place for her.” I thought he blamed himself for what happened to his mom and therefore thought of her as his “first”. I was wrong—again!—and the story that he tells is so heartbreaking. That’s all I can say.  

Now, I do have one little gripe about this otherwise amazing novel, and this I do have to give away a bit of a spoiler so be warned. 

***************************SPOILER ALERT*****************************

I was really disappointed that Abby was still smoking up after she had Georgia. I just hoped that with everything she went through having a baby would have made her grow up a little and leave that life behind her. Yeah, yeah, yeah, it’s only a little grass, it’s not a big deal compared to the other shit she could have done, but I wish she would have grown out of that, you know? It just made me respect her a little less as a mother figure. She grew up with parents who did drugs and all sorts of other shit; it just seems like something she should have learned from and not continued doing after her daughter entered the picture.

Other than that, I loved this book. And the ending? The sweet revenge? Again, not agreeing with it but justified. Totally justified.

WARNING: This book does contain dark content (child abuse, rape, murder, etc), underage sex, drug and alcohol use. Don’t say you weren’t given a heads up.


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Review: Broken (The Enemy Inside #2)

:Broken (The Enemy Inside, #2)

Title: Broken (The Enemy Inside #2)
Author: Vanessa Skye
Publication Date: November 22. 2013
Source: Net Galley
Summary (from Goodreads): A mother is murdered in an apparent robbery.

A young woman is raped and beaten in a home invasion.

Chicago Detective Alicia “Berg” Raymond doesn’t believe in random crime and is certain both cases are more than they seem—but can she trust her instincts, or is she too distracted by the feelings she has for former partner and new boss? For Berg, the need for justice burns deep and fills the emptiness where therapy and relationships fall short.

She’s certain the husband knows more than he’s willing to admit, but the trap to catch the killer is the loophole that sets him free.
The rapist is caught and sent to prison, but when Berg gets closer to the family devastated by his depravity, their behavior doesn’t add up.

As Berg fights to prevent another murder, she crosses the line between hero and villain—and there’s no turning back.

Vanessa Skye has done it again with another amazing novel.

Detective Alicia “Burg” Raymond is back with new suspects to chase, new criminals to catch and a surprise in her personal life that she never saw coming.

I’m always a little hesitant when it comes to sequels. The second is always lacking something for me, it just never measures up to the expectations I’ve set for it as a reader.  But this book? This book is amazing, just as great as Skye’s first novel.  I was not disappointed.

Burg is paired with a new partner in this one since Jay (her old partner and only love interest for those of you who don’t know) has moved on up on the career ladder. I wasn’t sure what I thought of the new guy  at first. I mean, sure it’s clear he’s a womanizing Casanova wanna be, but he also had softer moments with Burg that warmed my cold heart…only to quickly turn back into that jerk and freeze it over again. He was one of those characters that just couldn’t seem to get his shit together until he did in a big way.

Burg and Jay. There is a lot of run around with these two, mainly because Burg is so fucked up. Just when you think they’re finally getting somewhere she runs off and everything falls apart again. And then there’s this life changing moment for her. One, as a reader, you kind of see coming but that doesn’t take away from it or make it any less of a great twist. And then the real twist—the gut wrenching, sad twist—is thrown at you. It definitely made me see Burg in a new light. She’s presented as this woman who doesn’t give a damn about anything or anyone and in that one moment an entire life she saw for herself is destroyed and she’s left just as vulnerable and empty as any woman in her position would be.

But let’s not forget the mystery thriller part of the story. Like I said, Skye does just as great of a job in this one as she did her first with the murder mystery and “who dun it” factor. I love how she weaves her stories, how everything slowly comes together in a case while she still keeps focus on her character’s personal lives. I can’t really say much about “the bad guys” without giving away spoilers, but I have to say, I think my favourite part of the book was towards the end when Burg visits one of them. Talk about wonderful manipulation, people! You really see how dark and twisted this character (Burg) is and I love it!

I’ll be impatiently waiting Vanessa Skye’s next novel. Impatiently. Waiting. 

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