Series: The Butcher #2
Author: Sian B. Claven
Published: February 15, 2018
Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: May 10-12, 2022
Jessica’s Rating: 5 stars
All her life Kalli thought that her sister had lost her mind, seeing a ghost everywhere and associating it with death. Kalli wants her own answers though, and spends her life working towards being granted access to the Butcher files and solving the deaths that rocked their community all those years ago.
Things take a turn for the worst when the haunting figure from her sisters’ twisted mind starts appearing to Kalli and she is left questioning her sanity and whether the Butcher is back.
Kalli must find the answers before it’s too late.
Before she sees the skeleton girl one more time.
Before she meets her own demise.
I have the whole Butcher series on kindle, but Claven was wonderful enough to send me Kallista on audio as I can get to audiobooks much quicker than kindle or physical books due to my daily commute. My review for the first in the series, Tatum, is here.
Kallista is the second in the Butcher series and takes place 10 years after the events of Tatum. Kallista (Kalli) is determined to find the Butcher and is working to become a profiler and we go on this journey with her! We have two pov: Kalli and The Butcher himself! I was invested in the whole story, and cannot decide which pov I preferred! I was rooting for Kalli but loved getting into the disturbing and depraved mind of The Butcher. And I was dying of curiosity the whole novel: Just WHO is The Butcher?!!??!!?
Besides the mystery of The Butcher, we have a horror and thriller novel with paranormal take on it that will keep you reading. I also enjoyed this as we see that the skeleton girl is back! Just an FYI: This series deals with an extremely disturbing serial killer and Claven doesn’t hold back with the violence and goriness as she tells us her tale, so reader prepare yourself. But I can’t help that I enjoy the dark and disturbing!
I really enjoyed everything about this continuing story. Kallista kept building to a very intense climax and just when you think the story is over, Claven comes back with one more “gotcha” moment! I can’t wait to see where the series goes next, and thankfully Claven also sent me the audio of the third novel: Sylvana, so I can start it right away!
Series: All Souls #4
Author: Deborah Harkness
Published: June 25, 2019
Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: February 20-March 1, 2022
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars
On the battlefields of the American Revolution, Matthew de Clermont meets Marcus MacNeil, a young surgeon from Massachusetts, during a moment of political awakening when it seems that the world is on the brink of a brighter future. When Matthew offers him a chance at immortality and a new life free from the restraints of his puritanical upbringing, Marcus seizes the opportunity to become a vampire. But his transformation is not an easy one and the ancient traditions and responsibilities of the de Clermont family clash with Marcus’s deeply held beliefs in liberty, equality, and brotherhood.
Fast-forward to contemporary Paris, where Phoebe Taylor–the young employee at Sotheby’s whom Marcus has fallen for–is about to embark on her own journey to immortality. Though the modernized version of the process at first seems uncomplicated, the couple discovers that the challenges facing a human who wishes to be a vampire are no less formidable than they were in the eighteenth century. The shadows that Marcus believed he’d escaped centuries ago may return to haunt them both–forever.
A passionate love story and a fascinating exploration of the power of tradition and the possibilities not just for change but for revolution, Time’s Convert channels the supernatural world-building and slow-burning romance that made the All Souls Trilogy instant bestsellers to illuminate a new and vital moment in history, and a love affair that will bridge centuries.
I have not read the previous novels in the series, but I just finished the show Discovery of Witches which I enjoyed. I’m not a huge fan of Matthew, but I was a big fan of Marcus and Phoebe in the show and I saw the fourth novel was Marcus’ backstory and Phoebe’s transition to vampirism… so I had to grab the audiobook! I know I missed some things by not reading the previous books, but I was ok with that since I knew the story through the show.
As I mentioned, we get Marcus’ backstory in Time’s Convert along with present day events. Diana is also our narrator and we are updated with her and Matthew’s story along with their twins. I really enjoyed hearing Marcus backstory, especially with what happened in New Orleans which was referenced on the show. Seeing Phoebe going through her transformation as a modern woman was intriguing as she went along with ancient customs. There are also some funny situations that occur.
We also have more of Miriam in this novel as she has a certain importance in this novel. I also liked Miriam in the show though she was just a minor character. We see more of who she is in Times Convert.
I still am not a fan of Matthew, who just comes off as an older version of Edward Cullen. I just don’t see what made Diana fall for Matthew. On the show she goes from not liking him at all to an intense ‘insta-love’. I guess some women just ‘smell’ irresistible…
I do hope that Harkness chooses to continue the story of the de Clermont family as there is still so much story to tell! I personally want to see more with Marcus and Phoebe actually together. And the continuing story doesn’t even begin to include the Congregation and all of those politics!
Times Convert is recommended.
Kim has read the entire series and her reviews are here.
Author: Daryl Gregory
Published: August 31, 2021
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars
In 1933, nine-year-old Stella is left in the care of her grandmother, Motty, in the backwoods of Tennessee. These remote hills of the Smoky Mountains are home to dangerous secrets, and soon after she arrives, Stella wanders into a dark cavern where she encounters the family’s personal god, an entity known as the Ghostdaddy.
Years later, after a tragic incident that caused her to flee, Stella–now a professional bootlegger–returns for Motty’s funeral, and to check on the mysterious ten-year-old girl named Sunny that Motty adopted. Sunny appears innocent enough, but she is more powerful than Stella could imagine–and she’s a direct link to Stella’s buried past and her family’s destructive faith.
This. Cover. That’s it. Done. Winner, winner, chicken dinner. Ok, but we need to go more in depth. I liked this book a lot! It kept me interested during the whole thing! I wanted to know who this god in the mountain was. Why did he only communicate with the Birch women? Unfortunately, that’s why I gave this book only 4 stars, cuz y’all know I need more info and there’s just never enough! But that doesn’t change the fact that I enjoyed reading this book. I actually liked most of the characters and hated the ones I was supposed to. Even the open ending didn’t bother me, it enthralled me. I kinda want a sequel. Mr. Gregory very obviously doesn’t like organized religion, but I couldn’t deny that he was accurate on some things. Some of the stereotypes amused me! Overall, this was an interesting read that kept me turning the page!