Hi, everyone, I hope the month of June was good to all of you.
We’ve been working hard, as always, at reading and reviewing at The Novel Approach this month, and have managed to come up with yet another list of our choices for the best of the best for the month of June, so without further need for introduction, here they are—this month’s Booyah Books!
Lynn – Slasherazzi by Daniel A. Kaine – I would have to say my favorite part of this story was being inside the killer’s head. Actually seeing his thoughts and feeling his rage as he tortured his victims was a very unique perspective. Not many stories have that and with my morbid, sick sense of entertainment, I absolutely loved it. The author doesn’t hold back any detail here, so for those of you who get squeamish over blood and gore, you have been warned. Certain body parts are sliced and diced and the victims are shown no mercy.
Overall, this was a great read. If you love a great murder mystery with some romance and a lot of blood, this one’s for you.
Lynn's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Traci – Better Than Chance by Lane Hayes – Audio – Tyler Stevens does an excellent job depicting the characters with his voices in this audio book. If you have read the book previously, Jay makes sense. If not, remember my description of the formal, southern drama queen and then it will make sense. He truly brought life into each one of these characters and made it very entertaining for the listener.
This series would go on my re-listen rather than my re-read shelf.
Traci's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Sammy – Temper Sanguine by Lou Harper – Fast paced action and a really good story! Here is what really separates Lou Harper from the pack when it comes to paranormal novels. The thrilling, heart-stopping plot that never relents but carries you on a wild ride of a journey right up to the end. Mystery combined with action gives us a story line that has just enough twists and turns to keep us on the edge of our seats. What’s amazing to me about this author is her ability to run several plot points simultaneously and never confuse us or leave us lost somewhere in the middle. Rather, she painstakingly ties up each loose end and even manages to give just an inkling that there could be another novel in this series in the future. Skillful and interesting, dramatic and funny, tender and poignant, the story unfolds on the page and draws you in, thrilling you to the very end.
In a literary genre where sequels are often rougher fare and sometimes disappointing, Lou Harper gives us Temper Sanguine, a gorgeous follow up in her Sanguine series. I highly recommend it to you!
Samny's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Jackie – Recovery by Con Riley – When I finished reading Salvage, I thought to myself, “That was a great book.” Then I read Recovery, and I found Ms. Riley had completely outdone herself. This was not only the story of a recovering alcoholic but the story of a man coming to terms with every facet of his life. Jamie works his steps in the program, and he has to come to terms with the mistakes he has made in the past and find a way not to repeat them in the future.
I sincerely hope you will give this book a try, but I feel I must warn you that there should be copious amounts of Kleenex on hand while you follow Jamie on his journey. This is definitely a must read book; you will kick yourself if you miss it.
Jackie's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Lana – Cowboys and Kilts by Erin O’Quinn – Hugh’s tour takes him to Guthrie Castle and Graeme. Their meeting and subsequent get together is very well written, and I enjoyed reading it. This is a short novella and there are no surprises here. But I didn’t care because this was such a beautifully written story. The Scottish setting was brought to life through words, and I found myself walking the same paths as our heroes.
I felt every word I read. Graeme and Hugh jumped off the page and became real to me. I loved them and wanted more. Maybe a re-write as a fantasy! And the reference to Loch Ness was pretty accurate. It turned out that Graeme did have a big dick and knew how to use it despite his inexperience. I guess sex is hardwired in our lizard brain.
Cowboys and Kilts is a must read if you like sexy cowboys and Scots! I highly recommend it.
Lana's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Jules – Release by A.M. Sexton – The world that Sexton has created here is fascinating. Her storytelling and writing are so strong, that even as I was questioning myself for enjoying the book so much, I was incapable of stopping. Some of her prose when describing Misha’s feelings and observations is absolutely breathtaking. The descriptions of both the opulence and decadence of the Upper City, as well as the conditions and poverty in the trenches, are also stunning. As a leading character, Misha is likeable, feisty, extremely bright, and also incredibly sexy. Ayo is beautifully heart-breaking and fascinating, and Misha finds himself becoming increasingly drawn to and protective of him as well. The pace of the story was perfect, and the ending was thrilling – and surprising! I can’t wait for Return to come out in the fall so we can see what happened to some of the supporting cast (whose characters were also rich and very well-written), and get the conclusion of the story!
Jules' Full Review Can Be Found HERE
BJ – The Price of Dick by Dan Skinner – To summarise, what we have here is a deeply profound, psychologically explorative read that examines not only the traditional themes of the genre but also things we are afraid to look at too closely; our own flaws, our own self esteem issues, what we are willing to sacrifice in the name of infatuation. This book, much like his last, is one of the most courageous and thoughtful pieces I have had the pleasure of reading, and though a long read, I devoured it in one sitting.
If you’re looking for something fluffy, then look away. This is not for you. If you want to read the story of how J.J Johnstone’s life was turned upside down by his love of Dick, then get your copy now. This, to me, is what all books should be like, and I adored it from first page to last, humbly thankful to the author for such a penetrating look behind the doors of the closet he never chose to dwell in.
BJ's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Tina – Off Stage: In the Wings by Jaime Samms – Jaime Samms does a great job of taking the reader inside the mind of the abused and damaged Lenny and making us feel his pain. Not to the point where it is painful for us, but so we understand what is driving his behavior. He truly has no control over himself. The rage just takes over and he’s left standing there, dazed, looking at the pieces surrounding him afterward.
Ms. Samms also superbly shows how hard it is for Vance to stay by Lenny’s side during all this. The question of whether love really is enough is brought to mind. And is it domestic violence if the guy doing the hitting is really terribly damaged and doesn’t intend to hurt his lover? I say yes, definitely. There is never an excuse for hitting a lover or partner, male or female. But the internal struggle Vance takes us on is insightful. If he gives up on Lenny, he’ll be reinforcing all the negative feelings Lenny has about himself, and he’ll be one more in a series of losses in Lenny’s life. This could be the loss that pushes him over the edge.
Tina's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Kim – Motel. Pool. by Kim Fielding – For one who loves her ghost stories, this novel was quite different from the usual fare. Both the story and the characters kept me riveted until the very end, not to mention when I finished reading Motel. Pool. I kept going back into the story to read my favorite parts over again. I love it when a ghost story haunts me afterwards!
Kim Fielding has a wicked flair for writing a hauntingly believable storyline, and I’m hoping for a sequel. I’d love to find out more about this particular spirit world that Ms. Fielding has created, so I’m happily giving Motel. Pool. an enthusiastic 5 Star rating! Strongly recommended!
Kim's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Jordan – Cross & Crown by Abigail Roux – Julian Cross stars in Cross & Crown, and that character owns every page he’s written onto. Seeing the relationship and respect develop between him and Nick, and him and Kelly, was superb. Up to this point he’s always been a very mysterious character, but in Cross & Crown we see him frazzled and at his wits end trying to rescue his husband, Cameron. His dry humor and sharp wit was on point and made his character a little more…human…in my eyes.
Overall, I was impressed with this book and would rate it a solid 4 stars. The characterization, writing, and plot all came together to form a great book. I look forward to seeing what’s next in this series.
Jordan's Full Review Can Be Found HERE
Lisa – Chance Assassins: A Story of Love, Luck, and Murder by Nicole Castle – I’m entirely in awe of this author’s ability to write a story starring not one but two characters who should be unappealing in every way. Nicole Castle has made Frank and Vincent loveable to a degree that has left me obsessing over this book. It’s a hallmark of truly brilliant storytelling I haven’t experienced since reading Maria McCann’s As Meat Loves Salt and I fell for the insane Jacob Cullen. This author’s writing style is fresh, her characters funny and vibrant, her version of romance refreshing, and this book is one disturbing, endearing, horrifying, and sexy surprise after another.
Les Recidivists, the continuation of Frank and Vincent’s incomparable love story, is already loaded on my Kindle just waiting to be devoured, word for delightfully twisted word.
My Full Review Can Be Found HERE
And that, dear readers, puts an end to June. Until next month, happy reading!