Posted in Blog Tour

Against Nature by Casey Barrett @CapandGoggles @suzyapbooktours @KensingtonBooks #bookreview #againstnature

Happy hump day!

Thrilled to share with you today my review for this book sure to appeal to all crime thriller fans! Many thanks to Suzy for my invitation to the tour.🧡

My Thoughts

Casey Barrett has crafted a clever fast-paced thriller packed with plenty of action. This is the second book in the DI Duck Darley series, but I don’t feel as though I was at a disadvantage having not read the first. Duck is a hard-working, hard playing, and hard drinking flawed character. He prefers solving problems with his fists rather than his words, and as you would expect this tended to get him in some trouble. New York was the perfect backdrop for the unconventional enigmatic Duck’s antics.

Duck is currently hooking up with a rich divorcee Juliet who has a eight-year-old son Stevie. That is until his old partner Cass calls from the Catskills. Her boyfriend is dead and she is convinced it was murder. Cass’s boyfriend had been writing an article about doping and the East German Olympic team. What follows is a dangerous search for the truth.

This was an interesting story with a unique storyline packed with plenty of twists and turns to keep me guessing. However the jury is still out on most of these characters especially Duck. I seriously had no idea what to make of him? I’d start liking him and then he’d go do something stupid generally while intoxicated and then I had to rethink my feelings, again. Cas was equally confusing, I felt for the girl but… Juliet was a piece of work and I straight up did not like her, but her son Stevie on the other hand was simply adorable. Thank goodness for Stevie, he save the day and redeemed most of the characters in this book.

Gritty and raw this was a well done crime thriller that will appeal to all that enjoy the genre!

*** many thanks to Kensington for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

Against Nature: Book Two in the Duck Darley Series

Perched in an airy penthouse above the corrupt streets of Manhattan, unlicensed P.I. Duck Darley has settled into an unlikely domestic routine with a wealthy divorcée and her precocious eight-year-old son. But old nightmares return when a desperate text from Cass Kimball, the former partner Duck once took a bullet to protect, lures him back into sworn-off vices and the sinister world of professional sports . . . 
 
Cass cries murder after her boyfriend tumbles to his death in the Catskills while researching the tragic doping experiments that changed the lives of East German Olympic athletes during the Cold War. Following the brutal killing of a champion javelin thrower, Cass herself is arrested on charges of double homicide, leaving Duck on an impossible quest for answers while doubting everything he ever believed about his secretive sidekick . . . 
 
Now, caught between the secret horrors of extreme performance enhancement and shadowy criminals who stalk him relentlessly, it’s sink or swim as Duck stumbles through a reckless investigation that endangers both his life and that of anyone he allows himself to hold dear.

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Have a Beautiful day!☮️

Berit☀️✨

Posted in Blog Tour

Lost Roses by Martha Hall Kelly @marthahallkelly @randomhouse @suzyapbooktours #bookreview #lostroses

Happy Sunday book lovers!

Super excited to share with you today my review for this stunning historical fiction novel! Many thanks to Suzy for my invitation to the tour! What a delight it was to be given the opportunity to read an early copy of this stunner!🌹🌹🌹

Lost Roses by Martha Hall Kelly

My Thoughts

A beautiful story about the ugly truth of war. A tale full of courage, determination, strength, compassion, Hope, beauty, and love!

Martha Hall Kelly has written A compelling book that is simultaneously elegant and brutal… this is the kinder gentler cousin of “The Lilac Girls” A book I read and liked, but if I’m being honest I liked this book a bit more… I think for me all the characters in this book were more relatable, and I felt compassion for all of them… really the only common thread between this book and the previous is the character of Caroline Ferriday, a character I liked in the first book but I adored even more in this one… so I wouldn’t necessarily call this a prequel, and both books can definitely be read as standalones… although I’m guessing after you’ve read one you will want to read the other they’re both exquisitely told historical fiction novels full of strong women living through extraordinary circumstances!

“Lost Roses” is the story of three remarkable women Eliza, Sofya, and Varinka… The book is set during WWI and mainly focuses on the atrocities in Russia… both Sofya and Varinka are Russians, although they come from very different backgrounds and social classes… Eliza is an American, she is from a privileged background, she is also the mother of Caroline of “The Lilac Girls”… Eliza and Sofya became friends while at boarding school in Switzerland, Sofya is related to the Romanoffs family…Varinka was not born into privilege as these other ladies were she came to know Sofya when she went to work for the family… three women from three very different backgrounds and yet all their lives are adversely impacted by war…

One of my biggest takeaways from this book was how untouched America really has been by war… yes, many lives were lost and goods were rationed, but I think that is very different from The many more lives lost, the property damage, the horror of living through war on your soil, not to mention bandits taking over your family home… some of the situations that Sofya found her self in were so harrowing… her fortitude and determination were so admirable, I tried to put myself in her situation and I just don’t know if I would have had the strength to do what she did…Varinka really skated the line of right and wrong throughout this book, I felt so much for her because I’m not sure what choices she had… Eliza was strong and compassionate and I admired her loyalty and altruism… such a remarkable story that I feel will resonate with everybody!

This really was historical fiction at its finest, this book made me feel as though I was right there with these ladies during WWI, I felt so much for each and everyone of them and bonus I learned some things along the way! Absolutely recommend!

🎵🎵🎵 Song Running Through My Head

This song always reminded me of how we are all more alike than different, it also reminds me of the Cold War and Russia…

… In Europe and America there’s a growing feeling of hysteria.
Conditioned to respond to all the threats
In the rhetorical speeches of the Soviets.
MIster Krushchev said, “We will bury you.”
I don’t subscribe to this point of view.
It’d be such an ignorant thing to do
If the Russians love their children too.
How can I save my little boy from Oppenheimer’s deadly toy?
There is no monopoly on common sense
On either side of the political fence.
We share the same biology, regardless of ideology.
Believe me when I say to you,
I hope the Russians love their children too
… There is no historical precedent
To put the words in the mouth of the president?
There’s no such thing as a winnable war,
It’s a…

*** many thanks to Random House Valentine for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

The runaway bestseller Lilac Girlsintroduced the real-life heroine Caroline Ferriday. This sweeping new novel, set a generation earlier and also inspired by true events, features Caroline’s mother, Eliza, and follows three equally indomitable women from St. Petersburg to Paris under the shadow of World War I.

It is 1914 and the world has been on the brink of war so many times, many New Yorker’s treat the subject with only passing interest. Eliza Ferriday is thrilled to be traveling to St. Petersburg with Sofya Streshnayva, a cousin of the Romanov’s. The two met years ago one summer in Paris and became close confidantes. Now Eliza embarks on the trip of a lifetime, home with Sofya to see the splendors of Russia. But when Austria declares war on Serbia and Russia’s Imperial dynasty begins to fall, Eliza escapes back to America, while Sofya and her family flee to their country estate. In need of domestic help, they hire the local fortuneteller’s daughter, Varinka, unknowingly bringing intense danger into their household. On the other side of the Atlantic, Eliza is doing her part to help the White Russian families find safety as they escape the revolution. But when Sofya’s letters suddenly stop coming she fears the worst for her best friend.

From the turbulent streets of St. Petersburg to the avenues of Paris and the society of fallen Russian emigre’s who live there, the lives of Eliza, Sofya, and Varinka will intersect in profound ways, taking readers on a breathtaking ride through a momentous time in history. 

Have a lovely day!

berit☀️✨