Tuesday, March 17, 2015

ARC Review: Blondes, Books, and Bourbon: A White Dragon Black Anthology by R.M. Ridley

Published: March 13th 2015 by Xchyler Publishing
Genre: Supernatural, Magic
Format: ebook
Source: provided for honest review
Goodreads Summary

In this collection of short stories, Jonathan Alvey continues to battle the unraveling world of the White Dragon Black.

Interview: A rare sit-down with paranormal private investigator Jonathan Alvey.

The Play’s the Thing: When a blonde woman shows up in Alvey’s office, seeking protection, he uncovers more than a murder attempt.

The Cost of Custody: Alvey helps estranged parents rescue their daughter from a terrible fate.

Sins of the Father: A pawn shop owner risks it all by asking Alvey to recover property that is more than meets the eye.

Legerdelivre: There’s nowhere Richard Tomlin can hide when it comes to the controlling powers of a dusty grimoire, but can Alvey truly help him?

What a Nightmare: Little old ladies do deceive, and secretaries come dear, in Jonathan Alvey’s office.

Do As I Say, Not As I Did: Alvey must air a CEO’s dirty laundry before a company ghost destroys too much.

The Ties That Bind: Can Alvey control a poltergeist and maintain his promise to not fall victim to the Dragon Black?

Bindings and Spines: A first chapter sneak peek of the second White Dragon Black novel.

Buy Blondes, Books, and Bourbon: A White Dragon Black Anthology by R.M. Ridley Today at Amazon

"Uh-huh." She nodded her head, dabbed her eyes. "Or maybe..." Her eyes flicked away. "Or maybe it was cursed."

"Cursed." Cursed milk was a new one for Jonathan. He'd run into cursed books, remains, rooms, and even once a silk tie, but milk -- not so far. "Go on."

The Good

Ok so I want to start out by saying I have a strong dislike for short stories in general. But I really enjoyed the time I spent with each one of these. Alvey is an awesome main protagonist that is easy to get along with and root for. Well, unless your his secretary, but hey it's more the weird shit then Alvey that drives them off. I never felt lost reading these stories, and I was never just wanting to get onto the next one either. I can honestly say I like each and every one of them. Even if you haven't read Tomorrow Wendell you'll have no problem keeping up or getting to know Alvey.

The Bad

I have no complaints. I'm really looking forward to more Alvey stories.

The Romance

There is one story in which Mary is involved. If you read Tomorrow Wendell, you'll know she is the closest thing he has to a romantic relationship. His magic use, being their biggest obstacle. She hates the toll it takes on him but he refuses to stop helping people.


If you like magic and the supernatural in your stories, then Blondes, Books, and Bourbon: A White Dragon Black Anthology is for you. If you've never really tried out a detective story, then this is the one I would recommend finding out with. Great writing, amazing characters and fun yet creepy new monsters you don't normally run into.


"Say, Ralph, you still got that Hog's Leg behind the counter?" Jonathan said, wiping his hand on his pant leg.
The big man stopped and looked at Jonathan with resigned patience. "You know I do."
"Think maybe Frank will be all right closing up without it?"
Can't you just come out and say, "Hey Ralph, I need you to bring the gun?' I mean, really how hard is that?"
"Well, I don't want to put you in an awkward place, plus I like giving you the opportunity to offer to help. Makes me feel less like I'm coercing you. That way, if you get hurt, I can say, you know, that you volunteered."

"Gail trusted me enough to send you to me, right?"
That's because I have certain skills. Right now, I believe -- hell, I know -- you need those skills. Now sit tight for your daughter's sake."

The zombie, as he expected, was both chauffeur and butler. It was easier to have one well-bespelled servant capable of doing all but incapable of telling anything, than to a mixed staff. The cook would most likely be a living human and under a standard curse contract, nearly guaranteeing that the employee would never speak of what happened in the household.

Buy Blondes, Books, and Bourbon: A White Dragon Black Anthology by R.M. Ridley Today at Amazon


  1. Alvey is the perfect example of how a detective should be in my mind. And while I normally dislike short stories this one felt more like one novel with a series of events. Kinda like A year in the life of Jonathan Alvey. :D

  2. Hm. I share your opinion on short stories, so the fact that you rated this 5 stars actually makes me want to try it. Great review.

  3. If a book of short stories ever had a chance to be enjoyable this is it. :P It really felt like I was given the chance to get to know a character I love. it was like watching his life over a series of events yet it was like the days ran together. :D

  4. this is the first time I see this book, sound interesting, happy to see you like it :) I will check it out later :D

  5. Yeah, short stories are not my thing either.

  6. It actually really sums up Alvey's life. well toss in some magic and weird monsters and it's golden. :D

  7. They contain the hero from the book Tomorrow Wendell which is a fantastic detective story as well. These short stories just give us a chance to get to know him better. :D

  8. I would recommend giving this one a chance to be the exception. I really like they way it was done. :D

  9. I really like the cover for this, and I also like that it features paranormal creatures that you don't always get to read about. I'm not much of a short story reader, either, but this collection definitely sounds like something I'd enjoy.

  10. It really did feel like regular book with you following him over the course of a year or so. Having the chance to see him interact with different clients and that really helped kill the short story vibe. Alvey don't fight the run of the mill creature that's for sure and I love him for that. :D

  11. Well, you can't get a much better recommendation, can you? I don't often read detective stories...like maybe not in 10 years? And I generally skip short stories as well, Matt. But you have me curious. So maybe I'll give this a go. :)

  12. Thanks for sharing. Sounds like a good read! Nice review :)


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