Title : Tidal Whispers
Author: Jocelyn Adams, Claire Gillian, Julie Reese, KellySaid
Reviewer: Shyla Colt
Length: 118 pages
Tidal Whispers is a quirky collection of love stories that involve the sea.
Heart’s Desire by Julie Reece
Tessa has been through hell and has come home to lick her wounds. When a freak accident kills her parents she find herself back in her hometown, struggling to make sense of things and get back on her feet. Bullied when she was young because of a withered leg as a result of a childhood disease, she’s no stranger to adversity or fighting. However, this may be too much.
My heart broke for this girl who’d suffered so much, and had no one to lean on. Cameron was her first love and I was pleased to see a bit of joy in her life. When Cameron returns suddenly just when she needs them, it’s like magic, and to be honest I was overjoyed. It made my heart ache that her happiest moments where when she was asleep and dreaming of a man whose identity is unknown.
However, you know what they say about things that seem too good to be true, and this is no exception to the rule.
The Sweetest Song Claire Gillian
Let me just start off by saying this take on Siren’s was brilliant! I never thought of them as employees who worked for Poseidon. It caught my attention right from the start with that scenario, and never let go. Circe is a Siren on her last warning from her boss. Poseidon is a
taskmaster and she’s on her third strike on luring a boat to the salty depths of the sea and he’s not happy. She has three choices become his mistress, or his housemaid or figure out why the captain is immune to her song. When she’s on the surface among humans she can’t use her voice so she poses as a mute who can hear somewhat and read lips, but uses sign language as her primary means of communication. When she runs into the Captain off the ship, Otis, she learns his secret, his deaf.
As she falls in love with him, duty is mixed with emotion. The final outcome is up in the air until the very last minute, and I was pleased but surprised by the ending! Ms. Gillian did a heck of a job spinning a tale with so little words. The world Circe lives in is alive, vibrant and on the outskirts of our own. I wanted to know more about it!
Pearl of Pau’maa by Kelly Said
This is the epitome of best-laid plans going awry when destiny has a mind of its own. Merman Harmon is a soldier on a mission. He’s set to travel to the darkest, deepest parts of the ocean in search of a pearl that once belonged to his family. This pearl will lead him to his soul mate.
The heroine Miki is a young girl whose sole purpose is to provide sustenance for her people.
Young and determined she plunges into the forbidden waters that surround her island, and discovers a whole new world.
While entertaining and enjoyable, this story felt a bit rushed. There wasn’t enough build up to the love they shared, or explanation - when a merman finds his mate they know instantly, type of scenario. I was left wishing this had been a little more fleshed out by Ms. Said.
The Under garden by Jocelyn Adams
This story is a prime example of what love is really about.
The concept of child hood adoration that grows into a deep love between members of two different species really pulled at my heart strings. The slow development made the relationship between Nixie and Wyatt charming, and moving. What wouldn’t you do for your best friend? Now add love to the mix. It was a bittersweet tale with an ending much the same. So if you’re looking for a grand happily ever after this may not be your cup of tea. I'd like to add more details, but that would ruin the surprises, instead I invite you to see the world through the eyes of a child and remember what true innocence and first love was like once more.
As the countdown begins, the body count rises.
With London gearing up to host the Olympics, the city doesn’t need a serial killer stalking the streets, but they’ve got one anyway.
Leaving a trail of brutal and bizarre murders, the police force is no closer to finding the latest psychopath than Detective Inspector Kurt Lancer is in finding a solution for his daughter’s disability.
Thrust into the pressure cooker of a high profile case, the struggling single parent is wound tight as he tries to balance care of his own family with the safety of a growing population of potential victims.
One of whom could be his own daughter.
Fingers point in every direction as the public relations nightmare grows, and Lancer’s only answer comes in the form of a single oak leaf left at each crime scene.
About the author:
J.C. Martin is a butt-kicking bookworm: when she isn’t reading or writing, she teaches martial arts and self-defence to adults and children.
After working in pharmaceutical research, then in education as a schoolteacher, she decided to put the following to good use: one, her 2nd degree black belt in Wing Chun kung fu; and two, her overwhelming need to write dark mysteries and gripping thrillers with a psychological slant.
Her short stories have won various prizes and have been published in several anthologies. Oracle is her first novel.
Born and raised in Malaysia, J.C. now lives in south London with her husband and three dogs.
Rousing Your Muse: 5 Great Sources of Inspiration
“Where do you get your inspiration?” That’s one of the most common questions a writer gets asked. My debut novel, Oracle, was partly inspired by the Olympic Games coming to London, and partly by Greek mythology. Sources of writing inspiration are everywhere. You just need to keep your eyes and ears open for them.
1. The news & history
Current affairs can be a great source of story ideas and inspiration. Could a terrorist cell be planning on striking during the Olympics? How could the current economic crisis affect your protagonist? Could rebels be plotting to assassinate the President of X country?
Similarly, one can find inspiration in history: what are the experiences of a Jewish child growing up in World War Two Germany? What happens to your heroine in feudal Japan if her marriage were arranged for her?
2. Myths & legends
Many books and films have capitalised on inspirations from world mythology, e.g. Percy Jackson & the Lightning Thief is based on Greek mythology, and the current crop of vampire
and werewolf stories are reinventions of urban myths and folklore. There are hundreds of different legends to choose from, so don’t just go for the commonly known ones: perhaps a tale from Native American, Australian Aborigine, Chinese or Japanese folklore might inspire your next big idea!
3. People & places
Watching and eavesdropping can be a great way to get ideas. Where is that old man on the bus going? What’s in the tatty old bag of his? Who is the young mother shouting at down the phone? Similarly, interesting places and buildings can be very atmospheric and inspiring: what happened in this crumbling old mansion a hundred years ago? What would you find hidden in the attic?
4. Personal experiences
Snippets of real-life experiences can help make a story all the more realistic. If you have lived it, you could write the emotions more effectively. Be it love, loss, fear, an adventure, or a funny anecdote, jot down those little events and your feelings when it happened. Who knows? It could end up being used in your next book.
What if a man discovers his fiancée was cheating on her with the best man? What if a contract killer’s assigned target was his own father? On a larger scale, what if Germany won World War Two? What if Kennedy was never assassinated? What if Columbus took a wrong turn? What-if situations generate a whole world of possibilities, creating alternate realities populated by your own imagination.
Tell me: what inspires YOU?
Comment below with your inspiration and enter to win an Ecopy of Oracle!
OUR REVIEW OF ORACLE BY J.C. MARTIN
In her first full-length mystery, J.C. Martin has created an exciting story about a police detective chasing a serial killer set in London leading up to the Summer Olympics. As the story unfolds, we are also introduced to an interesting cast of characters, including the two other members of Kurt Lancer's investigating team, his eight-year-old daughter, and his younger misfit brother.
I thoroughly enjoyed the mystery story and how well woven the pieces were into the whole. The Greek mythological theme was carried through beautifully, and I enjoyed how it was first introduced by the bedtime stories Kurt's nearly blind daughter was practicing reading to him. As the killer's motives and m.o. became clearer, so did the various relationships in Kurt's life. I also enjoyed the way Kurt, his brother, and the killer were all portrayed as having come from less than optimal homes, yet the different choices each man made created such different paths. I definitely recommend this read for all the mystery/suspense
Eternal (Holloway Pack 0.5) by J.A. Belfield
Genre: historical paranormal romance (werewolves)
Length: novella (84 pgs.)
TBR Reviewer: Amanda
Jem Stonehouse leads an unusual life: the only female werewolf known to exist, her protective mate cannot keep her safe from the small-minded gossips of her village that only see the unmarried woman living with seven strange men. When werewolves repeatedly enter their territory, Sean decides on a more unusual step to keep Jem safe, aided and abetted by her mother and sister, both practicing witches.
While realizing afterwards that the story of Jem and Sean's first meeting and how she became a werewolf was contained in another prequel to this series, I still was able to follow along with their story just fine. I enjoyed the mixture of paranormal with historical in this particular novel, and really enjoyed the side characters. Jem's mother and sister were wonderful as they pushed for the wedding to be both human and mystical and the unusually strong female characters for the time period were enjoyable. Sean's over-protectiveness
seemed to chafe on Jem at times, but with all the outside wolves coming into their territory it was understandable and made his character more real. They also felt like a legitimately good match and I look forward to read more about their intriguing story; the premise was fairly unique.
Romance, Suspense - Novel
TBR Reviewer: Amanda
For 24 year-old Gayle, her first post-college job is turning into a nightmare. Her immediate supervisor is sexually harassing her, the people she turns to tells her to cope with it. To top it off, she uncovers what appears to be malfeasance and collusion between the partners in her accounting firm and the company they are auditing. Gayle and her partner-in-crime Jon soon find themselves over their heads in murder and mayhem in Dallas.
I loved this story - both main characters appealed to me and I appreciated the build-up in their relationship. Gayle, with her petite blond Nancy Drew-ish snooping skills and Jon with his caveman, possessive, protective vibes were a great fit, both for each other and for the story they found themselves inside. I loved that they went from collegues to friends to lovers to partners in more than one way. I loved that Jon appreciated her brain and did not expect her to play dumb to make him feel better about himself. The story itself had great twists and turns that kept me guessing; even when I figured out some of the minor points before they were revealed. The main mystery kept me wondering until the end. This story was very well written and I loved a romance around a profession that most people think of as less than sexy, where both characters are very intelligent.
The P.U.R.E definitely a great story for anyone who enjoys romantic suspense with humorous moments.