Tag Archives: published: 2018-01

Relay by Layla Reyne


Relay by Layla Reyne

Series: Changing Lanes, Book 1
Published by:
 Riptide Publishing on January 8, 2018
Rating: 4 stars (★★★★☆)

Dane Ellis is a swimming star, just longing to break through the water and find what he’s looking for in life. But that’s challenging when he lives in the shadow of his father, a famous conservative televangelist, and a mother who is all about appearances. And that’s why there’s a part of him that he’s kept secret–and is glad he’s managed to do so. Until Dane makes the Olympic team alongside Alex Cantu, who is much more than a rival. For one brief moment, Alex was the object of Dane’s affection, and Alex, well, he thought they might be able to have something lasting. But appearances are important in the Ellis household, and there are some lanes Dane just won’t cross. When the two are back in the same space together, with Alex as captain and needing to keep the team–and Dane–in line, will the forces of attraction prove too much? And to what lengths will Dane, Alex, and Dane’s parents go to hold onto the world that each is trying to preserve?

Life is not easy. Even for those who have it all. And while it is easy for us to look on and judge, it may well be the case that we can never truly put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. This is a lesson for both Dane and Alex throughout this book, as they both learn more about themselves and about each other. While we ultimately cannot change parts of who we are, listening to the right voices–within and without–can be more challenging than I think we often give ourselves and others enough credit for. A thought-provoking and at times inspiring read.

[Disclaimer: This review is based on an advance reading copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley.]


The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor

The Chalk Man

The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor

Published by: Crown Publishing on January 8, 2018
Rating: 3 stars (★★★☆☆)

So many times, we think we’ve left the past behind us only to find it can come back to haunt us when we least expect it. In 1986, Eddie and his teenage friends are just enjoying the innocence of their youth. The boys have little to worry about in their quiet English village, though they’re always on the lookout for adventure. And when someone uses their secret code–chalk stick figures they leave for each other to communicate messages–to lead the group to a dismembered body in the woods, well, it’s more adventure than their youthful innocence can handle.

Thirty years later, Eddie doesn’t give much thought to that eventful time in his youth. But when he receives a letter in the mail containing a chalk stick figure, everything comes rushing back. Especially when he learns that his friends all received the same letter. It could be someone’s idea of a sick joke, except one of them ends up dead and Eddie quickly learns there are more secrets piling up around him. Did the police peg the wrong guy all those years ago? And can Eddie find the answer before he finds himself or someone else he cares about in even more danger?

This is definitely one of those stories that transports you. Even with the flashbacks and jumps back and forth between time periods, the plot always seemed to flow well and the connections made themselves clear. Since this is a bit of a mystery, not all of the dots were connected at any given time, but when it all came together, everything made sense. An enjoyable mystery read for fans of the genre for sure.

[Disclaimer: This review is based on a copy of the book received from the publisher via Blogging for Books.]