About Me

My photo
Cecelia has a Master of Letters from the University of New England. She is available as a literacy tutor in the Adelaide area, and also available for review writing.

Saturday, November 12, 2022

HG: Chick Lit


The Mystery of the Lost Husbands was a work of women’s literature by Gina Cheyne

I just had to read this book after browsing through the blurb. Whether Anastasia was a quadruple murderess or not, it sounded like there were at least four juicy stories to tell! 

Miranda, Stevie and Cat ran a pet detective agency called “SeeMs”. The name implied reality could be very different from assumptions made on first impressions. This was their first attempt at solving a murder mystery, and it could be the women ought to concentrate on finding lost animals.

The chronology was cleverly worked out, with information gathered over a series of visits and interviews. Secrets were revealed, and the culprits were unexpected. A series of bad choices and coincidences reflected real life in a convincing fashion. I felt the multiple voices distracted somewhat from the narrative suspense, but the philosophical observations were sound. I would say this volume satisfied the criterion for drama and female-oriented literature more than who-dun-it. My copy was accessed as a sneak peek through Hidden Gems.

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

HG Reviews: Young Adult


 The Boyfriend List by J.L. Wyer was fun to read


I always enjoy a good young adult romance or coming-of-age story, and this had a few pluses. The cover and internal graphics were great. It was also a finalist in the 2022 Contemporary Romance Writers Stiletto award competition. The tone was introspective, creating a voice appropriate for the teenage genre. The style was well-composed and readable. The theme of the less popular girl getting the guy of her dreams was very relatable. Maegan had an amusing older brother, Braedan, and a lovable male best friend, Noah.

 On the other hand, the characterization was quirky. Maegan didn’t appear to relate to the other girls at all. They are portrayed as rivals and bullies, occasionally receiving a mention as the tolerable girlfriend of one of the guys. The closest thing to an explanation for this lack of relationship with the girls is that she was “nerdy”, but except for being good enough at mathematics to tutor it, her interests appear typical for a teen. There is a slight hint that her brother’s ex-girlfriend was not good to her, but this is not followed up. Maegan can talk to her Mom, but only about boys. She gets her brother to wheedle her out of being grounded and punished. I’ve heard of teenage girls being boy-crazy, but this was exaggerated!


I was pleased to read this book early through Hidden Gems.

Sunday, October 23, 2022

RF Reviews: Epic Fantasy


The House of Prophecy (The Chronicles of Chaos Book 3)  by Glen Dahlgren


RF Reviews: Paranormal



RF Reviews: Mystery - Who Done It?



RF Reviews: Science Fiction



RF Reviews: Romance Thrillers


Saturday, October 22, 2022

RF Reviews: Young Adult

The Inked by Kristina Streva sympathizes with the minority.

Darkest Rose by Vera Morgana modernizes the story of ill-fated lovers.

Status Human: Book Two of The Upsilon Series by Daniel Weisbeck presents two novellas featuring robotic beings with remnants of human consciousness. 


Victorian by Jordan Elizabet is almost as dark and brooding as it is spooky.

Christmas Magic by Catherine Kean shows love can go comically wrong once a spell is invoked. 


 Where the Magic Lies by Hermione Lee demonstrates all is not well in Fairyland.



The First Buds of Spring also by Hermione Lee brings magic into the classroom and draws a mortal into the other realm.



RF Reviews: Western


A SouthWestern Adventure: In the Footsteps of First Peoples: Mogollon, Hohokam, Salado and Sinagua by Michael Royea was non-fiction, but it set the background beautifully. 

Wild Montana Winds by MK McClintock was a sweet Western romance.

Kincaid: A Mountain Man's Treachery provided a classic, action-based Western adventure. 

The Siege: The Mimosa Tales: Book One by Linda Thackeray was absolutely action-based with shocking villains and heroic defenders. 



A Perfect Storm of Injustice by Jack A. Saarela was like a docu-drama in that it presented a fictionalized, but realistic account of a falsely accused man. It also dealt with real social issues. 



Tuesday, October 27, 2020

RS: More Gaming Fiction: Nera Vivaldi


Cookmancer Online by Nera Vivaldi

I wasn’t sure what to think when I saw the cover and read the blurb. I wondered what sort of LitRPG would use cooking – and the talk of scoring points - was the heroine participating in a reality television show like Master Chef? 

However, when I got past the uniqueness of the concept, I found Cookmancer Online was an absorbing read. Genuine gaming fiction, with a few twists. Apparently, Earth ought to have become uninhabitable, but it was saved by an artificial intelligence. The opposite of the TERMINATOR plot – but a certain amount of cyber paranoia remains. Is the artificial intelligence truly neutralised – and is it genuinely benign?

The villain is an ex-boyfriend, creating drama and tension.  I immensely enjoyed my review copy accessed through Book Sirens.

Follow me on Goodreads

Interesting Thoughts from an Author