Ida and the Whale by Rebecca Gugger

Rating: 4/5 stars

Published: 2 April 2019 by North South Books

Genre(s): Children’s picture book

Pages: 32

What lies behind the sun, the moon, and the stars?
Ida can’t stop thinking about these and other very important questions. Then one night, a flying whale wakes her and takes her on an amazing journey—where some of her questions are answered and even more created.
This gentle, philosophical tale is a visual treat sure to fill curious little listeners with wonder.

Source: Goodreads
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The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson

Rating: 4/5 stars

Published: 12 March 2019 by Grove Press

Genre(s): Histrical fiction-fantasy

Pages: 440 (Kindle)

From award-winning author G. Willow Wilson, The Bird King is an epic journey set during the reign of the last sultan in the Iberian peninsula at the height of the Spanish Inquisition.

G. Willow Wilson’s debut novel Alif the Unseen was an NPR and Washington Post Best Book of the Year, and it established her as a vital American Muslim literary voice. Now she delivers The Bird King, a stunning new novel that tells the story of Fatima, a concubine in the royal court of Granada, the last emirate of Muslim Spain, and her dearest friend Hassan, the palace mapmaker. Hassan has a secret—he can draw maps of places he’s never seen and bend the shape of reality. When representatives of the newly formed Spanish monarchy arrive to negotiate the sultan’s surrender, Fatima befriends one of the women, not realizing that she will see Hassan’s gift as sorcery and a threat to Christian Spanish rule. With their freedoms at stake, what will Fatima risk to save Hassan and escape the palace walls? As Fatima and Hassan traverse Spain with the help of a clever jinn to find safety, The Bird King asks us to consider what love is and the price of freedom at a time when the West and the Muslim world were not yet separate.

Source: Goodreads
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The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas

Rating: 4/5 stars

Published: 12 February 2019 by Crooked Lane Books

Genre(s): Speculative science fiction; Time travel mystery; Women’s fiction

Pages: 336 (Kindle)

In 1967, four female scientists worked together to build the world’s first time machine. But just as they are about to debut their creation, one of them suffers a breakdown, putting the whole project—and future of time travel—in jeopardy. To protect their invention, one member is exiled from the team—erasing her contributions from history.

Fifty years later, time travel is a big business. Twenty-something Ruby Rebello knows her beloved grandmother, Granny Bee, was one of the pioneers, though no one will tell her more. But when Bee receives a mysterious newspaper clipping from the future reporting the murder of an unidentified woman, Ruby becomes obsessed: could it be Bee? Who would want her dead? And most importantly of all: can her murder be stopped?

Traversing the decades and told from alternating perspectives, The Psychology of Time Travel introduces a fabulous new voice in fiction and a new must-read for fans of speculative fiction and women’s fiction alike

Source: Goodreads
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Wild Irish Heart (Mystic Cove, #1) by Tricia O’Malley

Rating: 4/5 stars

Published: 12 September 2014 by Park & Stowell

Genre(s): Paranormal Contemporary Romance; Magic

Pages: 258 (Kindle)

From New York Times Bestselling author, Tricia O’Malley, comes a romance series set on the rocky shores of Ireland.

It is time…

An ancient book, a power untouched, and a heart unloved lead Keelin O’Brien from her graduate studies in Boston to a small village on the coast of Southern Ireland. Determined to unearth the secrets lying hidden in the enchanted waters of the cove, Keelin has little time for a surly Irishman who infuriates her during the day and haunts her fantasies at night.

Inexplicably drawn to the woman who has stepped from his dreams and into his world, Flynn fights a stubborn battle against his increasing attraction for Keelin. Forces unknown have better plans for the two.

Only the secrets of the cove can show Keelin who she really is, the beauty of her mysterious power, and a love that will break the bounds of what she knows.

Source: Goodreads
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Painless by Marty Thornley

Rating: 4/5 stars

Published: 12 January 2018 by Marty Thornley

Genre(s): Horror; Mystery Thriller

Pages: 284 (eARC)

The debut psychological-horror novel from author Marty Thornley is a page-turning ride, a front row seat to a clinical trial gone horribly wrong. 

For Greg Owens, this was supposed to be a chance to end years of back pain and escape his reliance on pain pills. If it all worked out, he could maybe even get back the life he left behind as the pills took control.

Instead, as the patients are cured of their physical pain, they encounter a different sort of pain building inside them – obsessive thoughts, depression, self-destruction. The side-effects grow worse, and the suspense ratchets tighter. The patients want answers and violent revenge, setting them on a collision course with a crazed doctor, determined to protect his life’s obsession.

Source: Goodreads
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Quick Review: Contamination Boxed Set (Contamination, #0-3) by T.W. Piperbrook

Rating: 3.5/5 stars.

Published: 29 October 2013 by Post Script Publishing

Genre(s): Post-apocalyptic science-fiction; Zombies

Pages: 463 (Kindle)

This bundle contains the first four books in the CONTAMINATION series:
*Contamination Zero
*Contamination 1: The Onset
*Contamination 2: Crossroads
*Contamination 3: Wasteland
ABOUT CONTAMINATION: The infection has begun, ravaging the American Southwest and leaving a chaos in its wake. In this new world, there will be no last meal, no dying wish. The only reward left is to survive another day…

Source: Goodreads

This series is an easy light read. It gives readers what they want if they’re looking for some zombie fiction. It’s.. dare I say, formulaic? Contamination is not unlike most of zombie movies available out there.

T.W. Piperbrook’s writing is efficient in its storytelling. The drama and tragedy of the characters pasts are detailed but they don’t take centre stage. The focus is honed in on survival.

I must give fair warning. The first four titles in this series don’t give much in terms of progression. So if you aren’t one to be able to just leave a plot hanging and not willing to go all in by buying the whole series, I wouldn’t recommend this book.

Burning Sky by Weston Ochse

Rating: 4/5 stars

Published: 25 September 2018 by Solaris

Genre(s): Horror; War; Military fiction

Pages: 393 (eARC)

Everything is dangerous in Afghanistan, nothing more so than the mission of a Tactical Support Team or T.S.T. All veterans, these men and women spend seasons in hell, to not only try and fix what’s broken in each of them, but also to make enough bank to change their fortunes. 

But seven months later, safely back on American soil, they feel like there’s something left undone. They’re meeting people who already know them, remembering things that haven’t happened, hearing words that don’t exist. And they’re all having the same dream… a dream of a sky that won’t stop burning

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