Category Archives: Kate Kessler

[REVIEW] Seven Crows – Kate Kessler

Kate Kessler
Seven Crows (Killian Delaney, Book 1)
Hachette Redhook (US: 8th October 2019; UK: 14th November 2019; AU: 10th December 2019)
Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (AU eBook) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

Motorcycle clubs (if that’s all they are) are fine. “Bikie gangs”, however, are not for me. I hate seeing them romanticised, but thought I’d have better luck with this thriller.

It’s tricky. Because while a lot of it shows bikie gangs in all their horror, a fair portion of the novel does romanticise. Which is annoying, because there’s so much potential in the Seven Crows universe to truly shake up bikie fiction.

There are plenty of strong female characters…though they still choose to inhabit the very patriarchal society of bikie life. But imagine if all the women banded together and decided to ditch the dudes. Have an all-female club. Even make it an all-female gang, if need be…

I forget how Killian Delaney got involved with the Crows. Before or after she hooked up with Jason? Anyway, he’s dead. (Not really a spoiler.) But backstories aren’t shared unless they’re relevant to the plot…

She thought Jason was her “true love”. WRONG. But that’s OK, because there was another guy who loved her all along, and still loves her now, and now she loves him…

This is what I meant about the romanticisation. If you ask any bikie, they’d claim their club is the good one; that they only do bad stuff in revenge for other gangs’ bad stuff. And that’s the narrative the author pushes about the Crows. Killian’s new love has been “going legit”, because he’s not like other bikie members, or whatever.

And it’s just so boring and patriarchal. There’s so much set-up for revolution. While incarcerated in a women’s prison, Killian was in a sexual relationship with another inmate. So she’s bi, right? That would be so refreshing for a female to be bisexual in the patriarchy. However, Killian may have only been (and I hate to type this actual phrase that was in the book) “gay for the stay”.

That’s not the author talking. I’m pretty sure it’s the character and the bikie culture. It would’ve been brilliant if Killian’s new love was also female, to truly challenge bikie patriarchy.

Seven Crows is Book 1 in a series. Book 2, Call of Vultures, is due out later in 2020. I don’t know if more are contracted. And because this is only the first taste, perhaps later installments move more to destroy the patriarchy instead of enabling it. It’s just so frustrating to see so much potential go not-pursued in favour of less revolutionary threads.

Seven Crows is challenging. And because it has so much possibility the series will be all the more disappointing if it doesn’t reach its full capability.

[REVIEW] Dead Ringer – Kate Kessler

Kate Kessler
Dead Ringer
Hachette Orbit Redhook (US: 23rd October 2018; UK: 6th December 2018; AU: 27th December 2018)
Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK) Buy (AU eBook) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

During the past few months, book communities have discussed “age-gap” romances. Well, that’s what some people claim. Others have pointed out that teen girls with adult men is statutory – and therefore not merely an “age gap”, and not a romance. After all, with a romance the reader should want the characters to be together HEA or HFN – NOT wishing that the adult man would be in prison.

Dead Ringer is a welcome relief. This is a CRIME novel, which puts the adult male/teen girl relationship where it belongs…as a CRIME.

But the central relationship in the novel is not romantic or sexual. It’s the sister relationship between an FBI agent and her twin who went missing as a teen. It’s a powerful novel that cements Kate Kessler as one of my favourite authors.

Now Available for US Pre-Order

Kelley Armstrong: WATCHER IN THE WOODS (paperback): 12th November 2019: Buy (US)
Jennifer Lynn Barnes: LITTLE WHITE LIES (paperback): 1st October 2019: Buy (US)
Emiko Jean: EMPRESS OF ALL SEASONS (paperback): 19th November 2019: Buy (US)
Kate Kessler: SEVEN CROWS: 8th October 2019: Buy (US)
Marie Lu: REBEL: 1st October 2019: Buy (US)
Katharine McGee: AMERICAN ROYALS: 3rd September 2019: Buy (US)
Saundra Mitchell: ALL THE THINGS WE DO IN THE DARK: 29th October 2019: Buy (US)
Kass Morgan: SUPERNOVA: 1st October 2019: Buy (US)
Beth Revis: BID MY SOUL FAREWELL: 24th September 2019: Buy (US)
Madeleine Roux: SALVAGED: 15th October 2019: Buy (US)

October 2018 Releases

Done with September 2018 Releases? Here are October 2018 Releases. Even though it’s already November. I didn’t get around to catching up on doing the monthly release compilation properly, so here’s an “express” edition: author, title, and purchase links. Click on them to find out about the books. And for future releases, check Reading Wishlist.

Ilsa J. Bick: Bearwalker: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (AU)

Jessica Brody: Save the Cat! Writes a Novel: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

Amy Rose Capetta: The Brilliant Death: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide)

Suzanne Collins: The Hunger Games: Special Edition: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (AU) Buy (Worldwide)

Heather Kaczynski: One Giant Leap: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (AU) Buy (Worldwide)

Kate Kessler: Dead Ringer: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

Marissa Meyer: Renegades: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Kass Morgan: Light Years: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Tiffany Reisz: Mischief: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

Megan Shepherd: Grim Lovelies: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Rachel Vincent: Fury: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

July 2018 Releases

Done with June 2018 Releases? Here are July 2018 Releases. Even though it’s already August. I didn’t get around to catching up on doing the monthly release compilation properly, so here’s an “express” edition: author, title, and purchase links. Click on them to find out about the books. And for future releases, check Reading Wishlist.

V. C. Andrews: Mayfair: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (AU)

Kelley Armstrong: Portents: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

Kate Kessler: Zero Hour: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (AU)

Andrea Kleine: Eden: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Hardcover) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide)

Kim Liggett: The Last Harvest: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Kim Liggett: The Unfortunates: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Hardcover) Buy (AU) Buy (Worldwide)

Seanan McGuire: The Girl in the Green Silk Gown: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (AU) Buy (Worldwide)

Kelly Meding: Stray Magic: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

Alissa Nutting: Made for Love: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Alissa Nutting: Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (AU) Buy (Worldwide)

Amy Plum: Dreamfall: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Alexandra Sirowy: First We Were IV: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (AU Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Jennifer Wolfe: Watch the Girls: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Hardcover) Buy (AU Kindle Edition) Buy (AU Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide)

5 New Covers (Andrews, Brody & Rendell, Kang, Kessler, Pon)

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March 2018 Releases

Done with February 2018 Releases? Here are March 2018 Releases. Even though it’s already April. I didn’t get around to catching up on doing the monthly release compilation properly, so here’s an “express” edition: author, title, and purchase links. Click on them to find out about the books. And for future releases, check Reading Wishlist.

Heather Davis: A Light So Cruel: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

Claudia Gray: Defy the Stars: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Megan Hart: Forbidden Stranger: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

Rhiannon Held: Death-Touched: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff: Obsidio: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Kate Kessler: Four of a Kind: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

Seanan McGuire: Tricks for Free: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

An Na: The Place Between Breaths: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Dia Reeves: Dark Side of the Moon: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

Dia Reeves: Miscreated: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

Dia Reeves: Heartsick: Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

Kim Savage: Beautiful Broken Girls: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

Kristen Simmons: Pacifica: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Mary Weber: Reclaiming Shilo Snow: Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Hardcover) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide)

Now Available for US Pre-Order

Jennifer Lynn Barnes: LITTLE WHITE LIES: 6th November 2018: Buy (US)
Oyinkan Braithwaite: MY SISTER, THE SERIAL KILLER: 13th November 2018: Buy (US)
Rachel Caine: WOLFHUNTER RIVER: 11th December 2018: Buy (US)
Amy Rose Capetta: THE BRILLIANT DEATH: 30th October 2018: Buy (US)
Merrie Destefano: SHADE: 1st May 2018: Buy (US)
Merrie Destefano: DUSK: 1st June 2018: Buy (US)
Merrie Destefano: VALIANT: 4th December 2018: Buy (US)
Lydia Kang: THE IMPOSSIBLE GIRL: 11th September 2018: Buy (US)
Kate Kessler: DEAD RINGER: 6th November 2018: Buy (US)
Marissa Meyer: ARCHENEMIES: 6th November 2018: Buy (US)
Tiffany Reisz: THE CHATEAU: 5th June 2018: Buy (US)
Beth Revis: GIVE THE DARK MY LOVE: 25th September 2018: Buy (US)

6 New Covers (Altebrando, Destefano, Kessler, Khan, Lunetta)

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[REVIEW] Three Strikes – Kate Kessler

Kate Kessler
Three Strikes (Audrey Harte, Book 3)
Hachette Redhook (US: 24th October 2017; UK: 26th October 2017; AU: 12th December 2017)
Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (Worldwide)

I rate this book 4 stars (out of 5), which may not be apparent from the rest of this post. Also, I read this during summer, which is my worst time of year.

Three Strikes is not a thriller, but there are three mysteries to solve:

-Who’s Mackenzie Bell’s biological father, and who’s warning her away from finding out?
-What were the circumstances surrounding Mike LeBlanc’s death?
-Who’s responsible for the recent dead body?

One of the things I appreciate most about this series is that Audrey Harte killed someone when she was about thirteen, and actually faced consequences: time in a juvenile correctional facility. Vigilante murders are common in fiction, but the perps aren’t often held to account. That may be part of wish fulfilment on the part of the author, and maybe readers. So I have a lot of respect for characters – and the authors who write them – who don’t just do the crime but also do the time. Even another character in the series commits murder, and is also sent to a correctional facility.

But apparently that all changes if the person committing the crimes is an adult. Then the person covers their arse, or other people cover it for them. That happens in Three Strikes:

-A character erases security footage, planning to claim it’s a “glitch”
-When a character is attacked, the police immediately want to view security footage, but another character claims that they need permission from the attacked person first
-A character promises not to tell a secret, but then quickly after tells someone because “they won’t tell anyone”

There’s even possible statutory rape (or gross sexual assault) that happened nineteen years ago, but the police aren’t told so no charges are laid.

And it pisses me off that Detective Neve Graham is treated like the enemy because she’s competent at her job. She also grew up biracial in very white Edgeport, so she was already an outsider and not part of the Harte/Tripp family unit.

It’s also annoying how Jake pretty much owns everything in town, and is noted as a “real estate mogul”. It would be interesting to see how Edgeport would survive without him if he died, but for better or worse (worse, in my opinion) I predict a happy ending to the series. Which is NOT WHY I READ CRIME.

All grumbles aside, Three Strikes is another instalment in a series I always look forward to reading. Though only one novel and one novella are scheduled to follow, I’d happily read more crime fiction by Kate Kessler. Edgeport comes alive with all its small-town secrets, and there are likely countless more yet uncovered.