The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas

What a strange and engaging story. Time is so different when you know what is going to happen in the future. Time travellers meet up with their future selves and share knowledge. An organisation controls the law regarding time travel and time travellers, normal law doesn’t encapsulate those who exist across different time lines. This gives the opportunity for those who travel across timelines to conduct business outside normal legal boundaries. And the odd chance to deal with old adversaries. But who is the person who has been dealt with and who was it that dealt the telling stroke?
Odette wants to find out. She found the body and she wants to find out who did it. But how can she? And Ruby wants to ensure that her Grandmother Bee knows that she loves her and lives a lovely long life. But has Bee just been sent a message signalling her death? Ruby needs to know and intends to find out.
I enjoyed reading this story based across multi time lines and characters. There was nothing that I found off putting and it was fun to read. I don’t know if there is any way that a sequel could be produced, but if there was I would be very interested to read it.

““What melodrama! I think it’s a memento mori.” “A what?” “Dear me Ruby. Fancy a woman of your education not knowing that. A memento mori is a symbol, to remind you life is transient. We all need a spur to action now and then.””

I received an e-ARC of this novel through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. NetGalley does not allow for paid reviews.

4/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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The Psychology of Time Travel

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A time-travel murder mystery from a brilliantly original new voice. Perfect for readers of Naomi Alderman’s The Power and Emily St John Mandel’s Station Eleven.
1967: Four female scientists invent a time-travel machine. They are on the cusp of fame: the pioneers who opened the world to new possibilities. But then one of them suffers a breakdown and puts the whole project in peril…
2017: Ruby knows her beloved Granny Bee was a pioneer, but they never talk about the past. Though time travel is now big business, Bee has never been part of it. Then they receive a message from the future – a newspaper clipping reporting the mysterious death of an elderly lady…
2018: When Odette discovered the body she went into shock. Blood everywhere, bullet wounds, flesh. But when the inquest fails to answer any of her questions, Odette is frustrated. Who is this dead woman that haunts her dreams? And why is everyone determined to cover up her murder?

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Believe Me by JP Delaney

This book made me anti-social! I wanted to know what was happening in that place where the story was, so I ignored the real world and dived in, leaving behind all those who would engage me in conversation. This means that I also read it very quickly and finished it within a day of starting. There seems no point in telling you what the book is about, it is in the description and to expand on that would be to spoil the whole suspense of the tale for you when you read it yourself.
It is extremely well written in a first person format. Claire is reciting her words and thoughts for the reader, giving an insight into the world of an actress employed by the NYPD. There are also stage/script notes to provide clear direction for the reader, they do not intrude!
It is possible to guess what is going to happen, but again, the guess is wrong anyway. I thought I had an idea of what was going to happen at the end, I was kind of right, but not really! It is a good twister of an ending.
I liked Delaney’s writing style, but then I picked this book to read because I had previously read “The Girl Before” and really enjoyed that also. I am happy to recommend this book, it will most likely appeal to people who like crime, thrillers, crime thrillers and readers who like a bit of a twist to feature all through a story.

“If he’s the killer, he’ll be drawn to her vulnerability, the way a shark’s drawn to the scent of blood.”

I received an e-ARC of this novel through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. NetGalley does not allow for paid reviews.

4/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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Believe Me

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The sensational new psychological thriller from the internationally bestselling author of The Girl Before
Trust me. Love me. Just don’t believe me…
Claire Wright likes to play other people.
A British drama student, in New York without a green card, Claire takes the only job she can get: working for a firm of divorce lawyers, posing as an easy pick-up in hotel bars to entrap straying husbands.
When one of her targets becomes the subject of a murder investigation, the police ask Claire to use her acting skills to help lure their suspect into a confession. But right from the start, she has doubts about the part she’s being asked to play. Is Patrick Fogler really a killer . . . Or the only decent husband she’s ever met? And is there more to this set-up than she’s being told?
And that’s when Claire realises she’s playing the deadliest role of her life . . .

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A Murder of Crows by Ian Skewis

I wouldn’t say that this is an appealing book, more an engaging one. The story centres on a group of people who hail from Hobbs Brae originally, some still remain, some are returners. And someone is killing them.
Jack Russell is the DCI who needs to solve the case before anyone else comes to harm. His colleague Colin Clements needs to learn to be less impatient for dead man’s shoes!
Jerome regrets the way he brought up his son Scott, and misses his deceased wife, as he struggles to run his farm.
Alice is struggling with fugues and forgetfulness brought on by her dementia. She doesn’t know that her son Alistair has gone missing, presumed dead.
Matthew White has his own secrets and is determined to come out on top, being a successful business man, he has no intention of failing.
And others in the village have their own agendas, good, bad and indifferent.
I enjoyed this book, but I don’t feel like it is finished, maybe the next book needs to be read straight after, to give that satisfied reader feeling!

“‘Have you had a good holiday?’ she asked him. ‘The best,’ he replied. ‘I don’t want it to end.’ ‘Nothing ever ends, not really,’ she explained. ‘Everything is a prelude, a prologue, to something else.’”

I received an e-ARC of this novel through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. NetGalley does not allow for paid reviews.

3/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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A Murder of Crows

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The most violent thunderstorm in living memory occurs above a sleepy village on the West Coast of Scotland.

A young couple take shelter in the woods, never to be seen again…

DCI Jack Russell is brought in to investigate. Nearing retirement, he agrees to undertake one last case, which he believes can be solved as a matter of routine.

But what Jack discovers in the forest leads him to the conclusion that he is following in the footsteps of a psychopath who is just getting started. Jack is flung headlong into a race against time to prevent the evolution of a serial killer…

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The Denounced by SJ Sherwood

Ned Hunter is to be hanged, he is Denounced and therefore cannot be allowed to live. But things go awry and he finds himself bundled up and moved to a different location where he undergoes training as a leader of 5 others. It is a harsh environment and survival is not guaranteed, as they learn on the first night when one of the other pods is punished for trying to escape.

Determined not to suffer the same fate as the other pod, Ned needs to form his own bonded pod that can win their place at the top of the leader board in order to survive. And then what? No-one knows, but those who are training them. And what is their goal?

Ned needs his wits about him and cannot afford to relax for a moment. Everyone has it in for him.

A fast paced story, full of twists and tricks. Compulsive reading due to its different approach. I enjoyed it as a book aimed at Young Adults.

“I’m wondering if being dead may have been my better option. I’ve no idea where I am and what is going to be expected of me, but if I understand this correctly, I’m now responsible for five other people.”

I received an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

3/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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The Denounced: Book 1 A Grey Sun

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A convicted Denounced. Sentenced to Death. In a future divided into Secular and Non-Secular Quadrants, a crime punishable by death is to cross Quadrants and become a Denounced. When sixteen-year-old Ned is wrongly convicted and kidnapped to a secret location, he meets ninety Denounced, and a terrifying truth begins to unfold — one that will change the world forever. Forced to lead a Pod of five, Ned begins to realise thousands of lives could depend upon him. A survivor by nature, he now has to face his past, confront his destiny, and fight a System that has never lost.

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End State (The Stefan Mendoza Trilogy Book 3) by P R Adams

Stefan is ‘retired’, at least he likes to think so, but readers all know that that is never the case in stories!
Stefan is recruited for a job, but wants to use his own team, to do that he needs to locate and recruit them. Not an easy job, he hasn’t been in touch for a while and doesn’t know where any of them are! And he doesn’t really know what his new employers actually want him to do.
After tracking his team, Stefan needs to persuade them to come on board with him. The money stakes are enormous and this should be their final hurrah before each of them retires. Can Stefan persuade his new employers to stump up the huge pay-out for the team?
PR Adams writes a really good story. This is the final one in the three part cyberpunk series. You definitely want to read all three, starting with ‘Into Twilight (The Stefan Mendoza Trilogy Book 1)‘, then through ‘Gone Dark (The Stefan Mendoza Trilogy Book 2)‘ and then this book ‘End State (The Stefan Mendoza Trilogy Book 3)‘.

““Twelve million, and a quarter million per egghead after Marshall. And I want fifty thousand now. This mess has cost me a lot more than it should have.””

I received an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

4/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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End State (The Stefan Mendoza Trilogy Book 3)

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In espionage, there are only two types of agents: active and dead.

Stefan Mendoza tried to walk away from the business, but the Agency wouldn’t let him. The Metacorporate Initiative has changed the world, and his bitter enemy has thrown in with one of the biggest of the new corporate powers. The race to rebuild the recently destroyed AI has put a premium on elite software architects.

If Mendoza can wrangle the most coveted architect team, he’ll make enough to disappear forever. But can he allow someone to recreate the AI that wants him dead?

Pick up End State (The Stefan Mendoza Trilogy Book 3) to see the thrilling conclusion to this cyberpunk trilogy!

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Bone Realm by D N Erikson

Ruby has inherited her father’s business and her first customer turns out to be the one person that her father said that she must not do business with. She offers her services anyway and as a consequence her life is set on a path of death, magic and immortality. What will she end up with?
This is a short novella to introduce Ruby before she appears in Lightning Blade and it isn’t required reading, but it is really good to read this if you want to know all the details of who, how and why about Ruby. I certainly recommend it, if you can lay your hands on it.
The author actually suggests the following order for reading the Ruby Callaway books, in the frontispiece:
• Bone Realm
• Lightning Blade (Book 1)
• “Silver Tempest” Shadow Flare (Book 2)
• “Kentucky Clear” Blood River (Book 3)
• Going Home

I received an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

3/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)
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When a gravely wounded half-demon stumbles into Ruby Callaway’s print shop seeking medical assistance for a werewolf bite, Ruby quickly finds herself assuming an unfamiliar mantle: werewolf huntress. But killing a 1,300 year-old alpha werewolf as the full moon approaches might be the least of her problems… Bone Realm is a standalone prequel novella to the upcoming Ruby Callaway urban fantasy series.

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Lightning Blade by D N Erikson

Ruby Callaway is in prison, in a time loop. She keeps re-living the same day, where an FBI agent releases her from prison in order for her to assist with the removal of a Necromancer. But Ruby and the Necromancer are the only ones that know about the time loop and every time she relives the day she has to convince the FBI agent that she is the one who can do this, but that they need to work together.

Despite being in a time loop, Ruby is in a race against time. The longer the time loop exists, the harder it is to break out. So she must find a way before she is stuck forever. She needs to break out of the time loop, in order to break out of her prison.

A really enjoyable story, it grabbed my attention from the opening lines. There were no blocks to the reading and I did find myself reading late into the night because I didn’t want to put it down. On finishing this book I went straight on to reading the short Novella which gave the prequel information on Ruby’s life prior to ending up in prison. I look forward to reading the next story in the series very soon.

“Words from two hundred years past echoed in my mind as the completed form streamed into the data cube. You’re a hunter, Rebecca Callaway. A killer.”

I received an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

4/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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Lightning Blade (The Ruby Callaway Trilogy Book 1)

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When the FBI releases supernatural bounty hunter Ruby Callaway after 20 years, the terms are simple: kill the necromancer killing public officials in return for amnesty. But then the necromancer plunges a blade through her heart, and Ruby reawakens at midnight, back in jail. Alive.

Which means one thing: the necromancer has thrust the world into an endless time loop that only he and Ruby can see. And Ruby is the only one capable of stopping him before the world burns. But as she unravels the necromancer’s sinister plan, two questions repeat in Ruby’s mind: Just how dangerous is a vengeful serial killer with nothing but time?

And what if the necromancer isn’t the worst thing lurking in the shadows of this brave new world?

Lightning Blade is the first book in the Ruby Callaway Trilogy, mixing dark, gritty urban fantasy with a sprinkling of futuristic sci-fi & cyberpunk. Not your typical bounty hunter. Not your typical urban fantasy.

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Endohuman Love vs Duty by Nick Dream

I was asked to read and review this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.
I read the book fairly quickly and found it to be an interesting plot. I am not interested in werewolves and the like, so in places where it was moving towards that style of book I lost a bit of interest. Mind you, if I had seen the cover before I had read the book, I wouldn’t have even started reading it.
Adam is being brought up by his grandfather in a very strict and restrictive manner. His explanation is that Adam needs to be trained for something very important and that Adam must not break any of the ancient rules or he will lose his powers.
One of the rules is that he must not fall in love, so his grandfather tries to instil in Adam the need to avoid girls.
Of course Adam rebels and rails against this rule, while at the same time trying to honour his grandfather’s wishes.
Overall as a story I liked this book. In parts I really got fed up with it due to the afore-mentioned werewolves and vampires affliction. I think the story could go further in future books, and if the affliction is omitted I may well be a reader.

“I put my hands in my pockets to conceal my fingernails. They have involuntarily begun expanding into mini claws.”

I received an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

3/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully) I was going to give 2.5, but I’ve rounded up rather than down, so it’s ended up with a 3.

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ENDOHUMAN: Love Vs Duty: Book 1 (A Paranormal Superhero Romance Series)

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A page-turning debut, ENDOHUMAN is perhaps what Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight would look like in “Stranger Thing’s” upside down world with its X-Files mystery, Da-Vinci-Code-like style quest, Hitchcock suspense and countless plot twists and cliff-hangers that will keep you guessing. And you’ll still be wrong!
*Currently being adapted into Movie Screenplay

One of Wattpad’s top read books in 2016, making it to Top 10 Charts in “Paranormal” and “Romance” Categories with over 300k reads!

Book Synopsis:
Endohumans are not destined for love. It is against the Ancient Rules. Eighteen- year – old Adam Vanolf is about to be one of the last known Endohumans left on Earth as his dying grandfather rushes to complete his training. These superhuman hybrids descended from the ancient Greeks and Romans live concealed among us, sworn to protect mankind and safeguard an almost forgotten secret that is rooted back to the creation of man and the universe. Alas, the life and path an Endohuman must follow is lonely and dangerous , especially for a teenager trying to unravel the mystery that his ancestry hides. Gods? Vampires? Werewolves? Fallen Angels? Or just the creation of an unstable mind? An ancient evil is awakening and even though he doesn’t know it, the world needs Adam now more than ever. Yet Adam also needs love, so when he meets Evie, the girl of his dreams, a difficult choice must be made…

About the Author
Nick was born in London but now lives in Nicosia, Cyprus. He graduated from Lancaster University in the UK with a BA in Accounting and Finance with a focus on banking and financial services.

Despite being an accountant, in his free time he loves reading, watching science fiction movies and spending quality time with his family as well as writing poetry, short science fiction stories and children’s books.

In March 2014 he was admitted as a Member of Torr, one of the world’s most selective high IQ societies. Torr is a modern micro social network intended to stimulate original ideas, awaken and develop talent throughout the world, provide fellowship, and ensure a better appreciation of the arts and sciences.

Endohuman began life on Wattpad, where it climbed to the Global Top 10 Paranormal Romance Stories for its original, multifaceted and highly entertaining plot. Critics comment that even though the style of the book is Young Adult Fiction, the love story spans a multitude of genres including paranormal, suspense, romance, mystery, werewolf, vampire, sci fi, action and adventure. Nick likes to play with multiple twists in the story clearly influenced by his favourite author, Ray Bradbury, and creates a memorable protagonist in Adam, with a storyline that could go, frankly, anywhere!

Nick is currently working on the second and third instalments of the Endohuman trilogy.

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Enigma Key by Barnes and Wearmouth

This is a really great book if you grew up with the birth of computing and computer gaming (as I did), it really brings back the memories.

Eddie York is the main character of the book, his grandfather Brigham York also plays a lead role, but he is dead. Brigham has left Eddie a trail of clues which he must solve and follow in order to find the Enigma Key and save the world.

The clues need knowledge of the world of Flux, which was a computer game and also a comic that Brigham wrote for Eddie when he was a child.

Eddie’s adventure starts at the point of receiving a letter advising him to visit his grandfather’s grave prior to visiting the solicitors for the reading of his grandfather’s final will. Even getting to the solicitors requires Eddie to have his wits about him. The true race for the prize starts from then on.

Eddie meets up with various individuals during the quest set by his grandfather, some are friendly allies, some are yet to show their true colours and some are outright evil ‘so and so’s’. Some of the allies join up with Eddie to help him move forward with his time critical quest to save the world. Of those, Sol and Gert are two who are with him from the start, while others join him as he goes along (don’t want to spoil it, so I won’t say who).

The only thing that mildly irritated me was the ‘love interest’ at the very end. It wasn’t really needed, it was so formulaic really, as if pandering to the masses. It is one of the things that really irritates me in stories – people don’t have to ‘fall in love’!

“A wave hit them. Eddie’s head sank below the freezing water. He kicked his legs, bursting back to the surface as fast as he could.”

I received an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

3/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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The Enigma Key : A Gripping Adventure Thriller

 

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Official description:
THE FATE OF THE WORLD HANGS IN THE BALANCE.

ONE MAN IS THRUST INTO AN INTERNATIONAL RACE AGAINST TIME TO SECURE THE WORLD’S MOST DANGEROUS WEAPON: THE ENIGMA KEY

Eddie York—manhunter, codebreaker—is set on a dangerous mission by the last wishes of his deceased grandfather, a prominent member of the Guardian Group, a secret agency designed to protect the world from dangerous new technologies falling into the wrong hands.

Eddie is tasked to recover the Enigma Key, an object that holds the balance of worldly power. Using information from an old computer game that his grandfather had created to hide the key’s location, and working with unlikely allies, he must fight his way through a sequence of challenges for an answer that reaches into history.

If Eddie and his team don’t recover the Enigma Key before their enemies, then nobody or nothing will be safe again.

Enigma Key is the first book in an exciting new series from Colin F. Barnes and Darren Wearmouth. Written for fans of thriller and action fiction who love fast-paced twists and turns. Mixing history and cutting-edge technology, Barnes and Wearmouth invite you into a new world of fast-paced, exciting adventures.

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Wyntertide Rotherweird Book II by Andrew Caldecott

To my thinking this book is best read by those who have already read the first book “Rotherweird“, as there are many characters. And those characters have many aliases. It can become confusing, however, there is a list of people at the front of the book to help those who become lost in Rotherweird.

Nonetheless, although I found myself becoming engrossed in the world of Rotherweird, I did find myself thrown back to the present day and place when a character was inexplicable to me, not the author’s fault I anticipate, as I have NOT read “Rotherweird“.

Despite this it is an engaging story and it does even include line drawings from time to time to illustrate the clever writing. And check out the fantastic cover, it is so detailed! I liked the uniqueness of the story and its telling. Set in the past yet modern in style, with crafty machinations and clever intrigue. The only thing that set me back on my reading was, as I said, when I couldn’t grasp who was who in the tale.

I feel mean giving this book a 3, but I did find that the confusion over who was who in the characters was very off-putting and I kept being ‘thrown out of the story’ when that happened. As I was reading on a Kindle it was not so simple to flick to the front of the book to see who was who.

“Isolated by enveloping hills, Rotherweird will be kept from the rest of England but at a price. Here the study of history will be forbidden.”

I received an e-ARC of this novel through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. NetGalley does not allow for paid reviews.

3/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

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Wyntertide: Rotherweird Book II

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Official description:
Welcome back to Rotherweird.

The town of Rotherweird has been independent from the rest of England for four hundred years, to protect a deadly secret.

Sir Veronal Slickstone is dead, his bid to exploit that secret consigned to dust, leaving Rotherweird to resume its abnormal normality after the travails of the summer . . . but someone is playing a very long game.

Disturbing omens multiply: a funeral delivers a cryptic warning; an ancient portrait speaks; the Herald disappears – and democracy threatens the uneasy covenant between town and countryside.

Geryon Wynter’s intricate plot, centuries in the making, is on the move.

Everything points to one objective: the resurrection of Rotherweird’s dark Elizabethan past – and to one date: the Winter Solstice.

Wynter is coming . . .

Get Wyntertide: Rotherweird Book II for yourself.

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