Book Review – If I Could Turn Back Time


This book was exactly what I thought it would be, and that is incredibly satisfying. If I Could Turn Back Time follows Amelia as she inherits her grandfather’s “haunted” cabin and tries to settle in a new town in a bit of a rough part of her life.

This book is light, but not shallow, funny, romantic, and all-in-all just the type of book that leaves a smile on my face. The time-traveling elements are well done, and the characters were likable, developed naturally, and had great chemistry. In general, the plot just flowed super well. The romance moves fast, but I think it skirted insta love territory (Steam level maybe a 4 out of 5.)

Basically, I think this would make a stellar chick flick, and I’d be stoked to watch it. Although it is technically it’s part of a series, I didn’t read the first one and this book reads well as a stand-alone. I totally recommend this for romance fans who like a little steam, and I’ll definitely be reading more by this author.

Thanks to the publisher and Booksirens for the free ARC! 

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Solid light romance to give you a smile!

Thanks for reading!

Book Review – Zoo of the Dead & other horrific tales


Zoo of the Dead was a fantastic first read of 2022! I don’t usually pick up short story anthologies, but this one caught my curiosity… and then totally held it till the last page. Everyone one of these unique stories really embodies the best parts of the horror genre from a variety of angles. They kept me guessing while giving me those creepy, suspenseful, disturbing (hello, “Checking Out”) and in some cases, goofy (I’m looking at you, Dead Jimmy) vibes. I also really enjoyed the author’s note at the end of each discussing where she got her inspiration (Justice for Twinkie!)

Highly recommend for anyone looking for some great horror short fiction, and I will definitely read more from Iseult Murphy in the future. Minor content warning for body horror and suicidal scenes.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Tula’s quite pleased with this one and looking forward to more excellent 2022 reads!

Thanks for reading!

Audiobook Review – The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires


Okay… here we go. This review is chock full of spoilers, because there’s really no other way to talk (read: rant good-humoredly) about this book, but I’ve marked spoiler territory below.

The first thing I will say is that if the main characters were REALLY like those from Steel Magnolias or The Fried Green Tomatoes… this book would’ve ended a lot sooner. Also, I have not experienced this level of frustration in a book in a long time, but I did give myself a week or two to cool off. With that said, let’s rant!

So I picked up this audiobook from the library after my coworker recommended it. The Steel Magnolias meets Dracula piqued my interest, so I was definitely curious to dive in.

And it starts off so well. This book takes place in the late 80s/early 90s in South Carolina. Patricia is a housewife that meets with her other colorful housewife friends every week for their true crime book club. But…

*SPOILER AHEAD*
.
.
.

…After Patricia’s earlobe is bitten off by her elderly neighbor, her MIL is eaten by rats, the earlobe eater’s nephew’s van is linked to missing kids, and then she SEES this vampire feeding on a girl (with weird sexual undertones, not to mention the “insectoid appendage” in his mouth) – Patricia is naturally, a bit concerned.

So she tries to rally her book club to get rid of the child-molesting vampire, but the husbands step in, trying to convince them their minds have been rattled by all their true crime books. The wives are like, well I guess we have to obey our chauvinistic, manipulative (and in one case, wife-beating) husbands because they’ve gone into business with the child-molester.

AND THEN WE FAST-FORWARD TO THREE YEARS LATER.

Like… what?!??!

Okay. I can understand that maybe happening in the 1950s, but in 1990?! Come on. And maybe like one or two awful husbands & submissive housewives I can see, but all of them!? After Patricia’s earlobe was bitten off, the MIL was eaten by rats, and Patricia SAW the INSECT APPENDAGE?! She’s still going to let him into her house with her CHILDREN?!?!?!

Um no. The Steel Magnolia ladies would’ve pulled their guns out from under their mattresses and killed that guy right there.

But anyways, I digress. I figured I would stick in there, because surely the husbands get their just deserts in the end…

Double spoiler alert.
They don’t.
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.
.
*END SPOILERS*

Which is all to say, the book was ridiculous horror fun up until the midpoint. Then it took a dive into some 1950 twilight zone of WTF that was SO incredibly frustrating, and it did not redeem itself. Honestly, I’m getting angry again just writing this review.

I need to tack on trigger warnings for gore and rape, but I’d still give it 2.5 stars for the premise, the flowing, descriptive style of prose, and a well-narrated audiobook. That said, I can’t say I would recommend to anyone, unless you want to go rant to your coworker… and your extended family over thanksgiving… and then the internet.

⭐⭐½

Let’s review the notes… shall we. 😂

Thanks for reading!

Book Review – Neha’s Mother


This was definitely an unexpected read! Neha’s Mother follows a single father as horrific, paranormal things start to occur in and around his young daughter. This book does NOT hesitate to jump right into the demonic, creepy possessed child thing right from the start. And from there, the demonic possessions continue at a pretty intense rate. This book definitely nailed the tension and gore-filled terror of the demonic onslaught, and I loved that it didn’t pull punches in intensity or pace.

While the writing flowed really smoothly, I did have a hard time connecting with the characters. The story fluidly jumps from one to the other, including some lengthy flashbacks, but I didn’t feel like any of them, particularly the MC, were really likeable, and the MC’s complex relationship with Lakshmy was a little tough for me to follow.

This books is definitely rated R for violence/murder, gore, sex, and extensive profanity, and I’d also throw in a trigger warning for references to kidnapping, prostitution, and pedophilia. I’m not sure this book was really for me, but if you’re interested in dark, gory horror that leans heavily on the demonic and spiritual, then you might want to give it a look!

Thanks so much to Hellbound Books for the free ARC!

 ⭐⭐⭐ 

And… if my toddler scuttles onto the top of fridge in the middle of the night, chanting and head tilting at unnatural angles, you can bet I’d be googling E.X.O.R.C.I.S.T

Thanks for reading!