June Book Reviews, Part Two

I’m back again with the second half of my reviews for June. If you missed part one, you can find it here. Summer is a huge reading time for me, with pool season the perfect opportunity to float on a raft with a paperback or my Kindle (have to be extra careful it doesn’t fall in the drink). These are the books that rounded out the second half of the month for me. To read the official blurbs and learn more about each, just click the Amazon link below each review.

book cover for Primal Waters by Steve Allen shows diver in scuba gear about to be swallowed in the open mouth of a mammoth sharkMeg: Primal Waters
By Steve Alten

Book three in the Meg series launches with an intriguing premise. It has been eighteen years since Jonas Taylor last crossed paths with a colossal Carcharodon megalodon, a.k.a. “Jurassic shark.” At sixty-four, he’s the father of a soon-to-be eighteen-year-old daughter and a slightly younger son. Along with his wife, Terry, he’s juggling family and mounting bills, when he gets an offer he can’t refuse—doing commentary on a reality TV survival show called Daredevils.Taking the job means going to sea for six weeks, his daughter in tow, along with a film crew and an adrenalin-fueled cast of thrill seekers. But all is not on the level, and there is more than one Meg haunting the Pacific, presenting separate challenges for each member of the Taylor family.

Once again Alten knows how to ramp up the excitement. The book starts off with a slow burn, the reader knowing there is more behind the Daredevils offer than meets the eye.

There are also plenty of opportunities for various Megs to answer the dinner bell. The Daredevil characters—good and bad—are all well drawn, and the reality TV angle adds a great edge. I particularly loved when Jonas intentionally flubs the name of the show’s airhead host after she repeatedly goofs his. Small things like this add flavor to the book, especially given the high-octane action scenes. I do wish Jonas and Terry weren’t always fighting off unwanted sexual advances (a theme in the last two books), but those small distractions aside, this is summer popcorn reading at its best. More than one Meg invades the Pacific. Give those sharks 5 stars!

Amazon Link
Genre: Suspense Action Fiction > Sea Adventures Fiction > Fantasy Adventure Fiction

Book cover for Red Eyes in the Darkness bu D.L.Finn shows a wash of black and grays with tree branchesRed Eyes in the Darkness
By D.L. Finn

This is another entry in the author’s evildwel series, which addresses the balance of good and evil across mortal and supernatural realms.  Retirees Will and Cass, along with their two dogs have a comfortable life—until murder hits close to home, and they suddenly find themselves the prime suspects.

Finn does a great job building tension with “It” watching and stalking them, their own daughters falling into the mindset of suspicion “It” has orchestrated.

This is a short story rife with tension that steadily builds as Cass, then Will, come to realize the evil which has infiltrated their lives. I didn’t expect the twist at the end. On a side note, I love how the author always includes pets in her stories, crafting yet another aspect that makes her characters feel like neighbors. 5 stars

Amazon Link
Genre: Paranormal and Urban Fantasy > Short Stories

Book cover for The Sheriff Meets His Match by Jacquie Biggar shows man huge red stiletto high heeled shoe with man in jeans and untucked shirt leaning against heel, with arms crossedThe Sheriff Meets His Match
By Jacquie Biggar

After reading Summer Lovin’, part of Biggar’s Wounded Heart series set in the fictional town of Tidal Falls, I immediately wanted to read The Sheriff Meets His Match which tells the story of Jack and Laurel, hinted about in Summer Lovin’. Laurel is a transplant from the sunshine state of Florida who takes the job of secretary to Tidal Falls hunky sheriff. Their attraction is quick and flirty, but complications arrive in the form of Laurel’s charismatic Uncle Max, and her cousin’s lowlife ex-husband.

As guaranteed in any Biggar novel there is plenty of heartwarming moments, including Laurel bounding with Jack’s teenage daughter, and the introduction of a cuddly lost kitten. Every time I read one of these novels, I am amazed by how effortlessly Biggar brings her characters to life with spot-on POV, snappy dialogue, and fleshed out descriptions. This is an author who knows how to set a stage for maximum effect. Each and every book screams “Hallmark movie.” 5 stars!

Amazon Link
Genre: Holiday Romance > Short Stories

Book cover for To Hunt a Sub by Jacqui Murray shows submarine breaking water with focus on large conning towerTo Hunt a Sub
By Jacqui Murray

Wow! This book delivers a complex mix of academia, covert ops, terrorist plots, and artificial intelligence. Once started, I couldn’t stop reading. Murray populates her espionage tale with a roster of characters that include an ex-Navy SEAL–now college professor–two brilliant grad students, an eccentric mathematician, and a Middle Eastern terrorist with deep pockets to name just a few of the highly diverse cast.

Kali Delamagente has invented an AI to track the evolution of prehistoric man. But “Otto” is capable of much more. In the wrong hands, Kali’s cutting-edge technology can decimate U.S. submarines. She attracts the attention of a mysterious unseen donor who funds her research, as well the FBI. Enter Dr. Zeke Rowe, ex-SEAL and Navy Intel officer who pursued a career in academia after a failed mission left him with permanent injuries.

Working together, Delamagente and Rowe struggle to remain one step ahead of a terrorist network that has infiltrated most every aspect of Kali’s life. Friends and colleagues are not always who they seem. As the stakes grow higher, Kali’s lab is broken into, her dog vanishes, a new friend is abducted, and her son is kidnapped. The book rockets to an explosive end, but the journey there is alternately a slow burn and a roller coaster of twists and turns.

The research that obviously went into the book—from the origins of prehistoric man, to the workings of submarines, intelligence agencies, and military protocol—is mind-boggling. I’ve already purchased book two of the Delamagente/Rowe espionage thrillers and look forward to three when it is released. 5 Whopping big stars!

Amazon Link
Genre: Technothrillers > Action Thrillers

And that rounds out my June reading. I hope something I’ve shared intrigues you. I’ve already got my nose buried in July books and look forward to discovering more titles. I love when I find new authors to add to my auto-buy list and discover fresh gems from authors I love. Here’s hoping your reading is every bit as inspired and satisfying!


72 thoughts on “June Book Reviews, Part Two

  1. To Hunt A Sub and The Sheriff Meets his Match are both on my TBR list. Can’t wait to read them! Thank you for including my short story and being the first review:) Yay!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Denise book is very intriguing. I love her evildwel stories. I’m not sure how I missed Jacquie having a historical novel out, I have to check into that.

      And, OMWord, I have no idea why is going on with HH 3. It might be because the original pub date was June and it got switched. Thank you for letting me know. Obviously things are a lot different with Kensington and me these days, but I will definitely look into it. I really appreciate the pre-order and also for letting me know, Robbie! I’ll get back to you on it.


  2. I love short fiction when it’s done well. And that’s not an easy thing to do, so I had to buy D.L. Finn’s short story to give it a try. And it’s summer–I have to read one romance with a glass of wine, so I’m trying Jacquie Biggar, too. Should be a fun July:)

    Liked by 3 people

  3. So, did you like the Meg series? LOL I love it when I see a reader devour every book in a series. That’s a better recommendation than some stars on Amazon.

    You (once again) gave us a great selection of work. They all sound wonderful.

    Liked by 2 people

    • And I’ve already bought the next two Meg books, Staci. Um, yeah, I’m a wee bit taken with those sharks, LOL. And I’m glad I continue to intrigue you with my reviews. It’s fun sharing the books I enjoy.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I always happy to add to someone’s massive TBR, LOL.
      Thanks for the Happy 4th of July wishes. I have loved seeing all the well wishes for Americans over this holiday. It is truly a special one for us.
      I hope you had an awesome Canada Day as well! {{hugs}}

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It looks like you are enjoying summer, Mae. 🙂
    That first cover is mind blowing beautiful-scary. I had Jacquie’s book and enjoyed it hugely.
    Thanks for reminding me about the short story from Denise. I can’t wait to check it out.
    Hugs on the wing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Happy reading, Teagan! I think you’ll love Denise’s tale, an I agree that Jacquie’s was spectacular. As for the Meg cover–yep, it delivered in the story! Thanks for visiting! {{Hugs}}


  5. Nice ones, Mae. I’ve been reading a lot this summer while driving, waiting, and NOT writing. Ha ha. Thanks for the recommendations. I’ve read Jacqui’s book, but haven’t dived into the others yet. I’m looking forward to your line up for August. (or July’s part 3!) 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Thanks for checking them out, Diana. I do a LOT of reading during the summer floating around in my pool. Jacqui’s book was awesome and I’m glad a few of the others interested you. Certainly, there will be more to come. Happy reading! 🙂


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