Awesome Reads From 2014

It’s been a while since I’ve posted book reviews. Here are two great reads from the fall of 2014.


One of the best cross-genre books I’ve ever read! Mr. Holm melds noir and urban fantasy perfectly. I love how Samuel’s backstory unfolds in flashbacks to his human life in the 1940s. It had the effect of creating two different mysteries–one unfolding in the past and one in the present. Mr. Holm did an amazing job weaving them together and bringing everything to a climatic and satisfying ending.

Samuel was an awesome protagonist and I will definitely be checking out the next book in the series. This is a unique take on the heaven vs. hell concept. The world building was intriguing and kept me wanting to know more the entire book. Mr. Holm has an engaging, fast paced writing style that ensnares the reader.

He does an amazing job capturing the sights and smells of the city from Chinatown to Grand Central. Terrific work making the setting a living, breathing part of the story.

The non stop action and constant peril kept me turning pages into the wee hours of the morning. Great work, Mr. Holm!

You can get the ebook, paperback, or audiobook here:ย


In If Catfish Had Nine Lives, Paige Shelton bring us back to the charmingly western town of Broken Rope, Missouri, for a Cowboy Poetry extravaganza. Yes, cowboys singing and reciting poetry by the campfire. And taking outdoor cooking lessons from Grams and Betts. What an adventure!

The campgrounds were the perfect place for mystery and mayhem. I love watching Betts, Grams, and Jake navigate between the ghosts and humans. Grams is so quick on her feet. The cooking aspect was truly original and one I wasn’t familiar with–outdoor dutch oven cooking. Fascinating stuff. The murder mystery was first rate. I had some ideas about who it could be, but I didn’t know for sure up until the very end.

I love the evolving ghost subplot too. The rules of their world aren’t as fixed as we thought and Jerome is back again to save Betts. Shelton does an amazing job weaving the ghost mystery from the past with the present day murder of an actor at a re-enactment. Definite jaw dropping moment was the reveal of who the ghost Joe really was. Keep ’em coming Ms. Shelton!

You can get the ebook, audiobook, and paperback here:ย

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34 Responses to Awesome Reads From 2014

  1. Carrie Rubin says:

    Such diverse books. That’s the beauty of reading, isn’t it? So many different worlds. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Ally Bean says:

    These both look great. Although I have to admit that reading about a Cowboy Poetry extravaganza sounds like a delightful way to mosey through the long, dark days of February. Thanks for the suggestions.

    • Truly fantastic books. I loved each one. The Cowboy Poetry extravaganza was such a cool twist. Though the way the noir and the present day melded in Holm’s book was also wicked awesome.

  3. EllaDee says:

    2014 reading list posts are my favourite of the moment, I think. And your suggestions though brief… and easy to manage! don’t disappoint as I’ve added Dead Harvest to my eclectic Goodreads TBR list.
    I’m pleased you had time in your busy schedule to fit in some great reads ๐Ÿ™‚

    • LOL. I read more earlier in the year. I used to do monthly book reviews but I stopped in the summer. I decided I’m going to bring them back on at least a quarterly basis. I think you’ll really enjoy that book. The writing is tight, the storytelling is top notch and the plotting is delicious. I’ve had to curtail the reading with my eye issues. Hoping the doctor can help on my follow up tomorrow. We’ve been treating the symptoms for 4 months without really getting at the root cause. It’s keeping me functional but not back to my normal eyes or reading appetite.

  4. I had to come back and pick up the name of that last book….remembered something about catfish…nothing like a good title to haunt a reader until they come back – it sounds like a great read.

    • Her books all have really clever catchy titles. They are a fantastic read. Highly recommend them all! But you can come into the series at any book and it makes sense.

      • Oh, good. That’s the best way to create a series.

        • I think it’s great for a long running mystery series. Though I do also like fantasy books when each book really builds on the last and you have to read them in order too.

          • I like sequencial books, too – but ran into problems when some of the books were missing from the library. If it’s an older series, it’s hard to find the one that’s MIA – something to consider if you hope the books have staying power. On the other hand, it’s annoying if a book in a series has to spend a chapter or two “catching up” the reader who didn’t read the previous book. No easy answer here. Best to just write the book and see how it wants to tell the story? Hope your weather is less foggy – feel like I should carry a fog horn on dog walks the pat couple of days. Paw waves to yours!

          • I fell for a series that was out of print and that’s where Amazon was awesome. I could track down used copies for a reasonable price and read the series in order. ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s a delicate balance. If the books come out a year or more apart, your reader sometimes needs to be caught up. But if someone is reading the series straight through, it’s irksome to them. As I headed into the sequel to Six Train I had to decide how to deal with it being a sequel. I decided that people would have to read the first book and I’d give little reminders in the second but not long paragraphs of catch up. It just didn’t feel right for my series.

            Yes, it’s just cold and black ice up here. Sorry your in all the fog still. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. jamieayres says:

    I love books where the rules aren’t set & keeps me guessing ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Laura says:

    Those both sound really cool, thanks for the reviews!

  7. This must be the week for book reviews. Yours is the third post in a row that I read which reviewed books! I’m not complaining, of course. I appreciate the info. With so many books out there, I really don’t want to waste my time on poorly chosen ones. Following the guidance of my fellow bloggers helps!

  8. jmmcdowell says:

    Thanks for the heads up on these books! They both look really interesting and will probably make my TBR list even longer. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • JM, I really loved both books. I was on a panel with Chris Holm on cross genre fiction in 2013 so his book was on my tbr list for a bit but I loved every second of it! LOL. Sorry for adding to your tbr pile. Mine is two bookcases right now.

      Paige Shelton delivers great mysteries with a ghost twist. ๐Ÿ™‚ Guaranteed good read!

  9. Aquileana says:

    Great reviews (or should I call them reviews!?) … The first book sounds truly interesting. I will check it out Kourt!. Thanks for sharing … Sending you all my best wishes!. Aquileana ๐Ÿ˜€

  10. TBM says:

    Love that you read what you want and don’t stick to one genre. I can’t imagine only reading one genre.

    • LOL. I try to read what I write. And I cross genres so I try to read widely across genres and also read cross-genre books. I have to say I am not as partial to non-fiction as fiction. Probably because I think there is more truth in fiction than in non-fiction. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  11. Great to know! I like so many different types of book genres and it’s fun to read all sorts of plots ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. Both of these are really intriguing Kourtney – different and interesting and something I’d probably never have come across if I hadn’t read your reviews!

    • Andrea, I really enjoyed them both! I love a good mystery, and if you can throw in some paranormal I get really excited. ๐Ÿ™‚ Happy to rave about them–they were excellent reads!

  13. I really do not know how you manage to find time to take part in all of the Book reviews you do.. They do sound awesome reads ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Aw thank you Sue. When I travel, I read on planes, buses, and trains and in hotels. When I’m not doing revisions, I try to read an hour a night too. But with revisions and my eye problems, I’ve had to curtain reading this fall and winter. They are really great books!

      • Yes do not over strain your eyes, what with all your writing, then need to rest.. I know, having had problems with my own .. Have a great week Kourtney xxx Hugs Sue

        • The doctors figured out I’ve developed a new allergy to something. It’s causing my eyelids to secrete mucus and aggravate the outer lining of my eye. I’m on antihistamine drops 2x a day and it’s handling the symptoms well. Though a visit to my allergist is likely coming next because I already take allergy medication and the medication is clearly is no longer working. ๐Ÿ™

          It’s terrible when you’re eyes aren’t working right. I hope you can figure out what’s going on and get treatment soon! It’s annoying when you spend months trying to get to the bottom of it and find you’ll need more tests.

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