Archive for the ‘1 star Reviews’ Category

Reviewed by Heather C

SERIES: Agamemnon Frost Trilogy
AUTHOR: Kim Knox
BOOKS: 3
PUBLISHER: Carina Press

Agamemnon Frost and the House of Death (Book One, Agamemnon Frost Trilogy)

BLURB: Liverpool, 1891

Click image to view full coverDecorated artilleryman Edgar Mason was forced to find new work when the British Empire replaced its foot soldiers with monstrous machines. Now he waits on the Liverpool elite as a personal servant. He has just one rule: he won’t work for fashion-addled dandies.

Agamemnon Frost, however, is far from the foppish man-about-town he appears to be. He’s working to protect the Earth from an alien invasion being planned by a face-changing creature known as Pandarus. And on the night he plans to confront the aliens, he enlists Mason to assist him.

For a man to love a man is a serious crime in Victorian England. But when Mason meets Frost, his heart thunders and his blood catches fire. And when Pandarus drags the two men into the torture cellars beneath his house of death to brainwash them, Mason’s new passion may be all that stands between him and insanity.

REVIEW:

Okay, this was crazy!

The cover is what first drew my interest to this story, but when I originally read the blurb for this, I was immediately turned off by the Victorian England-slash-alien invasion concept.  Then, something kept pulling me back to it over and over, and when I finally realized it would be a trilogy, I decided to give it a try.

It’s Liverpool in 1891, and Edgar Mason, a former soldier, has been hired for the night to play manservant to Agamemnon Frost, a well-dressed gentleman *cough* and guest at Sir Randolph’s dinner party.  Mason soon realizes that ALL things aren’t what they seem and the two men soon find themselves on the run…from Martians!

I’m going to separate my review into parts: first half and second half…

For the first half, the entire first half, I was so lost and confused I almost gave up.  There was a lot of “alien speak” and I couldn’t figure out what the other characters were going on and on about.  Plus, all the Greek references were lost on me.  I couldn’t visualize any of the alien contraptions, nor could I picture what the bad guys were doing to the MC.  It was like all this was written for a higher level of intelligence and my measly, human brain could not comprehend the complexity of it.  Like I said, it was a real struggle for me to continue reading.

Then, for the second half, like right AT the 50% mark, something changed, and all of a sudden, it was making sense and I was really interested in what was going to happen.  The story was still crazy, but by then, it was a fun crazy in a creative and unique way.  I now believe that the beginning was meant to be confusing and hard to follow, since we are getting the story from Mason’s third person POV, and not necessarily a poor execution from the author.

My favorite part of this story was the sexual tension between Mason and Agamemnon.  There’s lots of heat there that I really hope will finally reach a climax in the next book. (Yes, I can’t wait to read it; I must find out what happens).  I am really, really intrigued by Agamemnon and want to know more of his secrets; and I want to know what’s really going on in Mason’s head.

I’m giving this one 3 stars for the fact that it failed to hold my interest for a large part of the story.

Don’t let the historical aspects scare you if that’s not usually your thing, because the feel of the story is more science fiction, alternate universe.

Heather rates it – 3-stars-out-of-5-300x70

BUY LINKS: Carina Press :: Amazon

Agamemnon Frost and the Hollow Ships (Book Two, Agamemnon Frost Trilogy)

Click image to view full coverBLURB: Edgar Mason is ready to embark upon his new life at Agamemnon Frost’s side. But all is not perfect. His Martian overlord, Pandarus, has implanted a dark voice in his mind, a voice that urges betrayal. And though Mason can keep close to Frost, there’s little room for romance under the watchful gaze of the engineers from Station X.

That changes when Mason and Frost reopen their investigation into their old enemy’s whereabouts. Posing as double agents and investigating cryptic rumors of “hollow ships,” they find him impersonating a London banker and worm their way into his confidence.

But their success brings them trouble in spades. Pandarus takes them into the belly of his ships, where he plans to transfigure them into mindless automata. And with Earth on the brink of invasion, Frost’s old flame Theodora reappearing and Pandarus’s brainwashing growing more effective, Mason and Frost will find their bond tested as never before.

REVIEW:

I’ve come to the conclusion that science fiction just might not be the genre for me.

So, Mason is still trying to adapt to his “changes” and is working as Frost’s valet, but now they are stuck at Station X and really can’t explore any of that unresolved sexual tension that’s been building up between them.  Mason is also still struggling with the whispers in his mind that keep telling him that Frost is a traitor and urging him to report that to his master.  Nestor decides that Mason and Frost need to go check out the “hollow ships” and see if they can find Pandarus.  And that’s where things begin to fall apart…

I didn’t think it was possible, but this story was even more difficult for me to follow than the first one.  I couldn’t picture ANYTHING that was happening to the characters or the setting around them.  There were chambers, and spikes and ships made out of human skin…I think.  It was all over the place!  Mason kept thinking he was dying and then he would wake up and I would be even more lost. Then, I think there may have been some kind of time travel to an earth made of living skin…or was it dead skin?  I have no idea because then it was gone…I think.

The sexual tension/romance was much more lacking here than in the first book.  Previously, Frost was all ready to fuck Mason, and then when he finally has a chance, he turns him down!  But not before giving Mason a hand job that I couldn’t even see in my head. And Mason keeps going on and on about how Frost needs to be with his former fiancée, Theodora, even though Frost has told him over and over that he wants Mason and not her.

I struggled reading this from the first page to the last, but I’m still going to read the third book to see how this mess ends.

Heather rates it – 

BUY LINKS: Carina Press :: Amazon :: All Romance eBooks

PRE-RELEASE REVIEW: Agamemnon Frost and the Crown of Towers (Book Three, Agamemnon Frost Trilogy)

Click image to view full coverBLURB: Edgar Mason is losing Agamemnon Frost despite everything they’ve been through–the passion, the torture, the heat. Frost’s fiancée, Theodora, is back, and Mason can feel his lover gravitating toward her. Every day he sees them together, it tears at his heart.

Frost feels raw himself. His brother and sister-in-law are missing, and his guilt about failing to save Theodora from Pandarus eats at him. His feelings for Mason, whom he has put through hell twice already, just twist the screws tighter.

On top of that, Pandarus and the Martians are back to make their final push to Earth, and Frost and Mason are duty bound to fight them. People are vanishing. Bodies are turning up burned beyond recognition in the slums. The bleak, human-less future Frost and Mason saw in the hollow ships has nearly come to pass.

And in order to prevent it, each man will have to make a final choice: lose his lover or doom the world.

REVIEW:

Probably my most favorite book of the series and the most coherent…for the most part.

After rescuing Theodora, Mason and Frost are now protecting her at Frost’s home, Greenbank Hall, and trying to keep the darkness in her mind from taking over. Then, Frost’s brother, Menelaus, and his wife go missing and Frost decides he must take action against Pandarus and discover what the puzzle of The Crown of Towers really is, and choosing between Mason or Theodora’s safety.

For about the first 75% of this book, I was really liking it and was able to follow what was going on.  We get to see more of Frost’s vulnerabilities when it comes to the safety of Theodora; and Mason’s jealousy of Frost’s “engagement” to her.  We also get to see a resolution to all the sexual tension between Mason and Frost…and it’s totally HOT!!

For the last 25% of the book and the big climax where earth is saved from the invading Martians, well, this is where I got confused again and I’m still not sure I understand what really happened. Somehow Mason was the brain of Pandarus’s ship and then Frost’s cravat pin somehow becomes the key to saving the world. Huh?

In the end, Mason and Frost are free from Pandarus and Theodora and can now live happily ever after.

So probably, this kind of science fiction just isn’t for me.

Heather rates it – 3-stars-out-of-5-300x70

BUY LINKS: Carina Press :: Amazon :: All Romance eBooks

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Heather C. is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: HEATHER’S REVIEWS
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Reviewed by Taylor

18311546TITLE: Reprisal
SERIES: Proud to be a Vampire
AUTHOR: Alessandra Ebulu
PUBLISHER: Less Than Three Press
LENGTH: 22,000 words
BLURB: Aden is trying to solve the mystery of a drug that rots human innards. Alec is struggling to capture the person responsible for a rash of vampire murders. The only way to solve their separate cases is to team up, but with drugs, vampires, and murder involved even that may not be enough.

REVIEW:

So this is a very short story about a witch Aden whose brother was recently murdered, and he’s working as a reporter to solve his brother’s murder, along with other crimes.  He’s paired with a vampire Alec, who has been assigned to solve who has been killing vampires.

I don’t even know where to begin.  This just needed work all-around.

First, why are the two main characters’ names nearly identical?  Same amount of letters, start with ‘A’, and can easily be switched out in a reader’s brain.  Confusing and should have been changed in editing.

Second, why did the characters continuously ask questions in their internal thoughts?  “What kind of vampire is Alec?”  “Who were they dealing with?” “What the hell was the killer searching for?” It was repetitious and lent a juvenile quality to the writing.

Third, that villain and mystery was ludicrous.  Seriously.  Also, all the details were super vague until the reader got a flood of info-dump.  It was always the vampire was guarding “something”, or this must mean “something.”  Or even silly lines like, “Utmost respect for the killer code.

Fourth, insta-love on steroids.  Was there even a romance? Was there even character or relationship development? They had met and hung out two times on work-related matters with little to no flirting, and certainly no chemistry, when Aden is talking to his friend about Alec, “I don’t think he wants it, and I can’t force him to accept what he doesn’t want.”  Um…what???

So…this needed work for me.  It’s short, though, and I’m sure lots of people will find it easy and fun to read.

Taylor rates it –

BUY LINKS: Less Than Three Press

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Taylor is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: TAYLOR’S REVIEWS
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Reviewed by J. Taylor

A Little ComplicatedTITLE: A Little Complicated
AUTHOR: Kade Boehme
LENGTH: 104 pages/27,000 words
BLURB: Ryan Borja met the guy of his dreams in college. Brady Novak was kind, responsible and easy on the eyes. Yeah, the guy had a kid but Ryan loved her too. What could go wrong? Well, Ryan’s sister Ellie, that’s what. Ellie is a flighty, love-em-and-leave-em kinda girl with a big heart who doesn’t realize she dated the guy Ryan had fantasized about. But, like all of Ellie’s other relationships, this one ended within two months, just in time to send Brady running off to take a job in Phoenix, taking Ryan’s heart with him.

Ryan never thought he’d see Brady again until eight years later Ryan’s sister blindsides him by announcing that not only is Brady back in Atlanta but she’d asked him out on a date. And he’d accepted. As if that wasn’t enough to send Ryan on a tailspin, a neighborhood girl brings him face to face with Brady in an unexpected way.

Brady can’t believe when he sees Ryan again. He assumed Ryan had moved on from Atlanta, like he’d always said he would. But Brady hasn’t forgotten his cute, nerdy friend and wants nothing more than to have a chance to try the relationship they never got to have all those years ago, but convincing Ryan that he hadn’t slept with Ellie proves difficult. Ryan is still hurt over the way they left things and makes it an uphill battle, but Brady has waited too long. He’ll damn well give a good go of trying to get his man and with the help of his precocious teenage daughter and a little help from friends they may just get their Happily Ever After.

REVIEW:

So, sorry, I’m going to say it. This was just really bad, and the author had the bones of a decent story there, but that editing…

I don’t know who looked over this, but there should have been several other people or someone else entirely. Spelling mistakes, character name switch outs, missing words, tense issues, etc. And this wasn’t every blue moon. This was close to nearly every page or so. Then there’s the content.

Aside from that, I just wasn’t invested in the characters or the plot. I don’t like flashbacks, especially when they continue over and over within a novella, even alternating POV. I don’t like when the flashbacks are repetitious, either. The plot needed to be bulked up with new events or ideas to keep things fresh.

The humor was sorely lacking. I didn’t even crack a smile once, and I get that the main characters’ thing was awkward humor, but this just didn’t work for me.

I loathe masturbation scenes, but at least this one wasn’t in the shower. Still, the sex scenes weren’t hot for me, so they felt like throwaways.Clichéd phrasing such as: “…coming unglued in my hands.” Or “I felt myself coming apart at the seams.” Even the orgasm seemed very unsexy to me: “I’m coming. Jeez.”

That sister annoyed me beyond reason.  Flighty, selfish, and one-dimensional.  She really was only in the novella as a way to provide a way to bring the couple back together after years apart and to provide imagined tension.  How hard would it have been for Brady or the sister to quickly tell Ryan there was nothing between them and there never really had been?  It went on and on, which just felt repetitious and unnecessary.

Then there was the Big Misunderstanding that I’m never a fan of in my books.  During a flashback, Ryan and Brady kiss and fool around the last night Brady is in town before he takes himself and his daughter out of state.  Immediately after the sexual activities, Ryan flees in the night, and Brady takes off the following morning.  They don’t speak again for seven years, and low and behold they are neighbors in the same apartment complex.  And I simply don’t understand how Brady could have been comfortably bisexual hanging out with a comfortably out gay man for a couple months, attracted to him, and never once did the topic of his bisexuality come up in conversation.  Yet, they were best friends…  Also, if Brady was genuinely attracted to Ryan, and had never brought up his attraction why on Earth would he think dating Ryan’s sister (and not having sex with her, really what was the point?) be a smart idea?

The writing felt simplistic and very much like a first draft, and like I said above, with another round of edits – both copy and content – this might have worked better for me.

Taylor rates it –

BUY LINK: AMAZON

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Jenn Taylor is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: TAYLOR’S REVIEWS
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