Tag Archives: wolf

Cruel Lessons (Lessons in Peril Book 1) by Randy Overbeck (Book Review)

On a school camping trip, fifth graders experiment with a dangerous new hallucinogen and die in a horrific accident, their deaths shattering the quiet town. Assistant Superintendent Ken Parks, hoping to redeem a fatal mistake from his past, grasps the opportunity to conduct the district investigation of how students are getting the drugs. Almost before he begins, the cops make a stunning arrest. But Parks battles on, convinced the real pusher is still out there, poisoning more kids until he receives an anonymous threat: if he continues, those close to him will pay. Is Parks willing to risk those he loves for a chance at redemption?

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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

 

Cruel Lessons was a 457-page novel (print edition) that touched on a sensitive real-life issue: drugs in school. It’s common for young adults to experiment with pot, cigarettes, or alcohol. The age bracket partaking in illegal drugs exists well before high school. Cruel Lessons features the effects of drug use among 11 to 13-year-olds. Drugs are entering Foster Middle School, mainly a hallucinogen-inducing wolf tattoo. Once the young buyer presses the drug to their skin, their time is almost up. 

Cops witness numerous horrific crime scenes through their time on the force; the death of 4 young boys close to the science camp will haunt their dreams for a long time, maybe forever. 

The school board asked Ken to take point and find out how the kids got a hold of the drugs and discover if the school was liable for their deaths. The board seemed more interested if they would get sued or not. I wasn’t surprised people valued the bottom line over the loss of 4 lives. 

Ken, not a trained investigator, began to work the case. He interviewed staff members and students and enlisted the help of Bart (resource officer). His “meddling” was not appreciated by the dealer, “the doctor.” Lives were lost in the pursuit of justice. A popular teacher was fighting to prove her innocence. Through all the school drama, readers also watched love triangles unfold in the background. Wow, the cheating spouses drama could be its own soap opera. While I understand each purpose in the story, I wanted their faithful spouses to discover their misdeeds. I wanted more drama! 

The list of suspects was long. Who brought the tattoos into the school and how they did it might stun you. As you work the case with Ken and Bart, do not write off a suspect so quickly. At the end of the story, I had 75% of the resolution figured out. I was wrong about one prime suspect, which falls in the 25% category. 

Cruel Lessons will keep you guessing. When you think you figured it out, the author throws you a curveball. The uncertainty, the twists, kept me going back for more. Even though I loved the book, it left me with many unanswered questions. To avoid giving out spoilers, I will refrain from elaborating on what puzzled me. 

If you like crime stories that take time to solve, this book is for you! 

 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score:  

Releases 10/11/23: Preorder (Amazon) Link

 

 

Meet the Author

Dr. Randy Overbeck is an award-winning educator, author and speaker. As an educator, he served children for more than three decades in a range of roles captured in his novels, from teacher and coach to principal and superintendent. His thriller, LEAVE NO CHILD BEHIND (2012) and his recent mysteries, the Amazon No. 1 Best Seller, BLOOD ON THE CHESAPEAKE (2019), CRIMSON AT CAPE MAY (2020) and SCARLET AT CRYSTAL RIVER (2021) have earned five star reviews and garnered national awards including “Thriller of the Year”—ReadersFavorite.com, “Gold Award”—Literary Titan, “Mystery of the Year”—ReadersView.com and “Crowned Heart of Excellence”—InD’Tale Magazine.

As a member of the Mystery Writers of America, Dr. Overbeck is an active member of the literary community, contributing to a writers’ critique group, serving as a mentor to emerging writers and participating in writing conferences such as Sleuthfest, Killer Nashville and the Midwest Writers Workshop. When he’s not writing or researching his next exciting novel or sharing his presentation “Things Still Go Bump in the Night,” he’s spending time with his incredible family of wife, three children (and their spouses) and seven wonderful grandchildren.

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Scorned : A Wolf Shifter Paranormal Romance (Never Marry a Shifter Book 2) by Azaaa Davis (Book Showcase)

Releases February 23rd on Amazon! 

She’s the only one that can stop her cursed husband’s murderous rampage. 

Theresa lived a planned and pampered life that left her unprepared for the dark secrets and brutal people surrounding her new husband. Trapped in the form of a white wolf, the handsome Dr. James Patrick is in danger of dying, crazed and alone, or turning into something even shifters fear, a rogue alpha.

Theresa is bound to the unruly and vicious wolf pack James has tried to distance himself from in more ways than one. Theresa must stop relying on her looks and start using her mind. Can a human female that is best known for her beauty tips somehow save her cursed husband before he kills … again?

Preorder your ebook copy of Scorned today!

 

 

Be sure and check out book one! 

We said “I do,” and then he disappeared. 

Administrative assistant by day and boss lady on social media by night, Theresa enjoys sharing her charmed life with half-million followers. The only thing she loves more is being engaged to the hottest doctor at the clinic where they both work. Cementing her fame by reaching one million followers would be the icing on her wedding cake. 

Life stops running smoothly when her husband vanishes on their wedding night and a leaked photo of a barely-dressed Theresa yelling at the police sparks a viral sensation. With everything at stake—love, reputation, followers, and career—she embarks on a reluctant voyage of discovery. Follow Theresa as she stumbles over her new husband’s secrets and develops her inner strength. 

 

Start reading this thrilling paranormal romance novella today!

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Azaaa Davis is an International Bestselling American author of urban fantasy & paranormal romance novels. ✨

She fell in love with reading as a high school freshman and continues to read, write, and draw today. Her background in social work helps her portray realistic characters in otherworldly–and sometimes terrifying–situations. A New York native, Azaaa currently lives in New Hampshire (USA) with her husband and daughters.

Azaaa is working diligently to finish writing more fantasy novels while raising her daughters. Thank you for showing an interest in her stories!

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Molten Dusk: The Norse Chronicles Book 3 by Karissa Laurel (Book Review)

While recovering from a devastating betrayal, Solina becomes increasingly drawn to Thorin as he helps her hunt down Skoll, the mythical wolf who vowed to kill her. If she can find and destroy the beast, she’ll bring a swift and brutal end to her enemies’ schemes. But nothing ever goes as planned in Solina’s strange new world.

During her search for Skoll, Solina uncovers a plot to unleash a battalion of legendary soldiers and launch an apocalyptic war. Before she and her allies can locate the fabled army, several ghosts from her past return to haunt her. Solina must fight for life and the fate of the world, or her hopes for love and a peaceful future will go up in flames.

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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique)

 

I decided to write an acrostic poem summing up Molten Dusk. Enjoy!

 

Mystery and deception go hand in hand in the battle for ultimate power.
Odin and Thor’s descendants call forth their allies; no one plans to cower.
Lord of the Rain Dance shall stand by his Sun.
The Valkyries will fight to protect the chosen one.
Every move they make is being watched.
No room for error; their plan must not be botched.

  

Do not let your guard down when you see a wolf or a raven.
Unite and fight or retreat to a safe haven.
Solina must survive; she shall not perish.
Keep her safe Thorin for she’s the one you truly cherish.

 

Okay, I don’t know if that poem is cheesy or not but I love it. Guess what else I love? If you said Molten Dusk then you’d be correct. 

Like the other stories in the series, Karissa gave us more than one suspenseful – lives on the line – battle scenes. We also finally got what we were all waiting for….. Solina and Thorin give in to their feelings for one another. Like Baldur said, “It’s about time.”

Similar to Midnight Burning and Arctic Dawn, Molten Dusk has deception, blood, surprise twists, tears, and love. It was a great book and I highly recommend others buy it today.

 
Heart rating system:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest)
Score: ❤❤❤1/2
 

 

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Karissa lives in North Carolina with her kid, her husband, the occasional in-law, and a very hairy husky named Bonnie. Some of her favorite things are coffee, dark chocolate, super heroes and Star Wars. She can quote Princess Bride verbatim. In the summer she’s camping, kayaking, and boating at the lake, and in the winter, she’s curled up with a good book.

 

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