I struggled with the first three novellas, because they were part of series I didn't know (or one I didn't like the first book), so I was flounderingI struggled with the first three novellas, because they were part of series I didn't know (or one I didn't like the first book), so I was floundering in the dark. They also didn't inspire me to go look for the rest of the series, as it sometimes happens when I read anthologies.
And Primal Kiss, part of one of my favorite series, Breeds, left me rather cold. Maybe it was the shortness, maybe it was the unknown characters...I just didn't "feel" it....more
In Lora Leigh's Hannah’s Luck sheriff Rick Grayson has desired kindergarten teacher for four years, watching her longingly from afar, keeping his distIn Lora Leigh's Hannah’s Luck sheriff Rick Grayson has desired kindergarten teacher for four years, watching her longingly from afar, keeping his distance because of a brutal betrayal in his past. Now, someone is targeting Hannah and Rick suspects it’s all about him. And he’s determined to do anything to protect her, claim her, and make those threatening her pay.
This was a typical LL book, with a rather solid plot and loads of steam, but I simply wasn’t convinced. There was something missing, but I just can’t put my finger on it. Maybe it was too short, maybe it needed more of a back-story…I don’t know. All I know is that I liked it, but it was nothing overly special.
It’s tied in slightly to her Elite Ops series, though, giving me even more of an incentive to read the series. (3 stars)
In Red Garnier's Reckless seven years ago eighteen-years old Paige Avery and Zach Rivers were a Romeo-and-Juliet-esque item, she a judge's daughter, him a felon's son. Then her father was murdered, Paige almost met her Maker along him, and lost her memory in the process...Now she's back, someone wants her dead and Zack will do anything to keep her safe...And help her remember.
This was a cute, short, slightly bitter sweet story of love lost and found again, and second chances. I missed more development on the suspense subplot - it just seemed to be placed there conveniently, but nothing more, but the (renewed) romance between Zack and Paige stole the show. The only peeve is the somewhat juvenile interaction between them (mostly in the dialog). Sure, they haven't seen each other in seven years, and she's learning about their past again, but still, they're twenty-five, not ten. (3 stars)
In Alexis Grant's Tempt Me a Delta Force operative on leave does a friend a favor by protecting an R'n'B diva from a stalker. But Anita Brown isn't what the tabloids (and her fame-blinded family) have branded her and Zachary Mitchell finds himself fallin' for this feisty singer.
This was the weakest in the bunch for me. Not due to lack of chemistry between the two leads, far from it, but due to lack of actual story beside the sexual pull between Zachary and Anita. The suspense was beyond weak and the finale had a strong deus ex machina feel. Not to mention the abrupt ending. I hate it when that happens. (2 stars)
In Lorie O'Claire's Love Me 'til Death a police detective finds herself working off the record with an FBI agent on leave as they try to discover who's murdering young women with a hard-to-find street drug, and giving them string bracelets as mementos of their time together.
This little number was the best in this anthology, if you ask me. I loved the suspense (nothing beats a good murder mystery), and I loved Chase and Ashley. Their banter was sexy, the way they kept jumping from "let's have sex" to "let's solve a murder" to "let's have sex" again was sexy...And when they finally did it it was HOT. The only thing bothering me about this was the fact I knew who the killer was almost from the get go, and the shortness of the story. I wouldn't mind a full-length novel to explore more of Chase and Ash's background and of course the depth of the killer's motive. (4 ½ stars)...more
When she was fourteen she witnessed her brother and father's murder at the hand of a Coyote. She's hated Breeds ever since...So what the heck is she dWhen she was fourteen she witnessed her brother and father's murder at the hand of a Coyote. She's hated Breeds ever since...So what the heck is she doing, ten years later, in a hotel with one.
Well, he doesn't know who she is, he's warm, provides a sense of (false) security, and he's hot in and out of bed. I guess that makes it right. Yeah, if the first "thesis" were true, but Styx knows exactly who he holds in his arms. The woman he's been chasing for the past two years. The woman who holds vital information for the Breeds, and especially Jonas' young daughter. The woman who hates all the Breeds. The woman who is his mate.
Yet another LL book in which I hated the heroine. I waited for Styx to snap, break her neck and find himself a new mate. Alas that moment never happened. Though I did like this book much more (despite the heroine) than Lion's Heat, probably because Ms. Leigh at least stayed true to who Styx was from the beginning instead of turning him into a sissy. Also, despite her lack of "charm", Storme also kept true to her beliefs (until the very end), instead of pouting away not knowing what she wanted. Yes, she was obnoxious. Yes, she acted like a child everybody accused her of being (granted, she witnessed a Coyote killing her family, but grown-ups tend to think rationally, not with the brain of a child). Yes, I wanted to kill her. Yes, she took a bit too long to come through (there's nothing like a well placed kidnapping to change a girl's mind). But at least she was consistent in her behavior. Does that make any sense?
[Beginning of rant] A lot of people have problems with LL's writing, editing, -isms, lack of research etc. I just take them as her little quirks and just go with the story (despite it's glaring problems, this was still a good story, mostly thanks to Styx). I'm not here to judge her style or anything, I'm here to enjoy the ride. If I don't like an author (for any reason, be it the narrative style, be it the writing, be it anything at all), I don't read their books. Period. I don't go back for more.[End of rant]
As mentioned, despite the huge heroine problem, this was a good, solid story, coupled with some little insight into what the future might bring. A good addition to the series....more
Angela Knight’s Vampire Ball was yet another installment in her Mageverse series, but it was a rather disappointing read. The series also started withAngela Knight’s Vampire Ball was yet another installment in her Mageverse series, but it was a rather disappointing read. The series also started with a novella in an anthology, but Lance and Grace’s story at least had “body”, it was nicely written and well-paced. Kat and Ridge’s story only seemed to be trudging along without much substance. It was simply too short and the characters bland. Not even the timely appearance of Lance could save it from doom.
A Little Night Magic by Allyson James also suffered from its shortness. Despite the hurried explanation of the few focal points of the backstory, I found myself scratching my head a few times, wondering just what the heck was going on. I felt too detached from everything that was going on, the characters and everything else. I’m not much for Native American “legends” of shape shifters and skinwalkers and this story didn’t change my opinion.
Anya Bast’s Sweet Enchantment was a nice respite from the previous two not-so-good stories. It wasn’t anything stellar, mind you, but still the second best in this anthology. It wasn’t even close to K.M. Moning’s depictions of the goings-on in the Seelie and Unseelie courts, but the pacing was good, the story had a natural flow to it, and the two leads endeared themselves to me. I actually found myself wishing it was longer, I truly wanted to see what happened next.
And now we get to Lora Leigh’s A Christmas Kiss...I’ve been waiting for this story since the epilogue in Aiden's Charity. And let me tell you I wasn’t disappointed. This was a classic Leigh Breed novella with plenty of steamy attraction, steamier action, a little bit of angst, lots of conflicting emotions, great buildup to the finale, and loads of hunky Breeds.
The AC epilogue gave us a tantalizing glimpse into what could’ve been between Hawke, a Wolf Breed and Jess, a traitor working for her father. Well, A Christmas Kiss delivered on that glimpse, explaining Jess’s treason, giving a heart-wrenching description of both Jess’s and Hawke’s suffering in the year of her imprisonment and the three months after her release. The steam rose off the pages in their first "touching but not kissing" scene, the throat constricted at Jess’s first view of her new house, the heart sped up at the confrontation with the villain, and tears rose at the description of the angel with the broken wing.
Wonderful. I’m giving this anthology a 5 star rating based solely on Ms. Leigh’s contribution!...more
Too short to really enjoy it, but it did whet my appetite for more. I guess I really should start with this series once and for all. Of course it helpToo short to really enjoy it, but it did whet my appetite for more. I guess I really should start with this series once and for all. Of course it helps knowing the characters, Travis and Lillian, have their own book - Black Jack....more
I had high expectations for this book. I've been waiting for Jonas' story almost since the guy first appearedJonas Wyatt is finally getting his due...
I had high expectations for this book. I've been waiting for Jonas' story almost since the guy first appeared in this series, and seeing how arrogant this lions was, how manipulative, I simply couldn't wait to see him brought to his knees by the right woman.
To say I was disappointed is a huge understatement.
Rachel sure didn't fill the bill for Jonas' mate, IMHO. I felt he deserved more, I expected, I wanted more for him. He got a whiny, emotionally-crippled, bratty icicle instead of a worthy female and mate. I know it's all about the conflict between the hero and heroine, she has to oppose the mating at first, it makes for an exciting and exhilarating read, but this was a bit too much for me. Rachel purposefully hurt him at every turn, knowing what her denial did to him, yet still she persevered in her stubbornness. For two thirds of the story! I'm all for conflict, but not that much of it.
She finally came around in the last third (no one informed us readers th mating hormone can bring on a personality change as well), but it was a little too late. Where was the feisty, no-nonsense woman at the beginning of the story? The one who stood up to the Leo, defended her mate? The glimpse I got of her wasn't enough and came way too late for comfort.
It always comes down to the heroine for me it seems. But in this case she wasn't the only problem this book had. The lack of actual story bothered me, the villain appeared in the beginning and at the end, leaving a huge gulf in between that was filled mostly with the heroine's overreaction about everything and everyone, and generic, impersonal, going-through-the-motions sex scenes. I sure didn't feel the love that was supposed to be between them.
The only redeeming quality of this story was Jonas himself, but unfortunatley he lost most of what made him Jonas. He wasn't himself anymore, and I refuse to believe it was the only way for Ms. Leigh to "do him justice". Don't get me wrong, I loved seeing him so helpless against the mating heat (it's what I was actually looking forward to), so utterly sweet in falling in love, but the fact he lost a part of himself in the process didn't sit well with me. Whether another heroine might have made a difference is a moot point. What's done is done....more
I've been waiting for this book since the epilogue (and sneak peak) in Coyote's Mate. Unfortunately I was rather disappointed with how this one turnedI've been waiting for this book since the epilogue (and sneak peak) in Coyote's Mate. Unfortunately I was rather disappointed with how this one turned out...And, yet again unfortunately, I can't pinpoint the exact "location" of my unhappiness with it.
This was a typical Lora LeighBreed book with an arrogant, stubborn, I'm-always-right-because-I'm-a-man Breed and an equally stubborn, determined heroine. Pity, I didn't feel the connection I usually feel with other Breed couples. And I also didn't feel the connection between Cabal and Cassa.
I actually understood (sort of) Cabal's justification for steering clear of her for the past eleven years - though he could've easily done it without the groupies. I actually quite like the Bengal...even more after he finally acknowledged what we all knew already and unleashed his "true self" on the world.
I had more problems with Cassa, connecting with her was impossible, understanding her even more so, because she didn't seem to understand herself, and her stubborn (almost suicidal streak) soon started grating on my nerves. For someone who's spent more than a decade in the company of Breeds she seemed particularly ignorant of what made them tick, especially when the mating heat was involved, and simply went on her merry way, not caring who she might hurt in the process - even if that individual happened to be her. I secretly even hoped something would befallen her just to shake the bi*** up and make her see reason. And her constant "ping-ponging" with Cabal. God, it was so annoying. First she understood (or thought she did) why he'd kept his distance, thinking he hated her, because of course he hated her, he didn't have a choice, she destroyed his life, she betrayed him yadda-yadda-yadda. And in the same breath she raged at him because he found "solace" with others. Yeah, the last one bothered be as well, but constantly repeating the same old same old was just frustrating. Haven't these people ever heard of communication?
I know all Breed books have some sort of misunderstanding in them, it helps create tension and conflict, but so far none of the previous couples needed an entire book length to sort their crap out.
This was a rather slow book, compared to the others in this series, mostly because of the pigheaded h/h. Luckily the finale was explosive as ever...And who can resist reading from the point when the Breed finally unleashes his animal on the cruel world who took his mate away?
Not the best, but still a solid addition to the series, giving us a precious little insight into what Jonas' book might bring....more
Roni's been in love with Taber for years, but when Taber one day reneges on his promise to finally act on the blatant attraction between them, leavingRoni's been in love with Taber for years, but when Taber one day reneges on his promise to finally act on the blatant attraction between them, leaving her only with a love-bite on her neck, she's devastated and heartbroken.
Fifteen months later it's all over the news. Taber is one of the genetically altered Feline Breeds...And according to that never healed bite mark on her neck, he's also her mate...And also clearly states her as pray for the vindictive members of the Genetic Council.
A bit better than Tempting the Beast, but still much to be desired. At least this one had some fairly good plot in between the "bedroom" scenes, that were still a little too close in between, yet not so similar to make it boring. *big grin*
Once again, the saving grace are the characters. Taber was a little less intense than his predecessor, making the entire experience a little easier to bear and for the reader to glimpse some much needed emotion that was so lacking in the previous book. Well, most of the time he was still pretty much a domineering jerk, but at least he attempted to be civilized about it. Roni was just Roni, I guess and the reason for Taber's somewhat mellow attitude. With a history of abuse she inspired protectiveness in all around her and despite her initial adversity to the "mating" once she figured out if cannot be helped, she simply went with the flow, instead of stubbornly running away...Which would most certainly have resulted in a chest-thumping, vine-swinging, roaring incident.
The conflict between them was too stretched out, if you ask me, when everything could be quickly and easily resolved with a simple talk. But then we wouldn't have had a story...Oh, well.
My favorite parts were, once more, the scenes with Kane. I love that man. Even an idiot could tell the little digs are just a somewhat perverted form of defense, he's hurting, she doesn't want to talk to him, so he takes it out on all the rest. His eyes tell the whole story, yet everybody still falls for it. I can't wait for his story, the epilogue of this one promises one heck of a ride....more
The only surviving member of his unit, ambushed in the Middle East, Dash Sinclair wants to die. But even trapped in a drug-induced coma he hears the cThe only surviving member of his unit, ambushed in the Middle East, Dash Sinclair wants to die. But even trapped in a drug-induced coma he hears the call for help. The letters from a young girl, who's in danger and need his help, bring him back from the brink, only to push him back into hell when he learns both she and her mother are dead.
Elizabeth Colder and her daughter, Cassie, are running for their lives, barely escaping the ruthless man who wants Cassie. Elizabeth is at her wits end. She doesn't know where to turn, who to trust, when suddenly Dash stalks into her life.
He's been searching for mother and daughter since the day he received the last letter from Cassie telling him they weren't dead. And now that he's found them, he'll do anything in his power to save them...And keep them.
Hallelujah! We have a winner...I mean, we have a story. At last!
Finally, Ms. Leigh has found the balance between telling a story and having her characters do the horizontal tango...Repeatedly. Thank God for Dash's recessed genetics and obvious lack of that dastardly hormone, making the attraction between him and Elizabeth a little less potent but not less compelling. Without the whole hormonal craze Ms. Leigh has woven a beautiful, strong story, with wonderful characters and depth. I loved that Cassie, a little girl, saved Dash's life, and the fact he found his mate through her letters, fallen in love with a woman he's never seen merely through the words and eyes of her child, was beautiful, if a tad unrealistic.
Again, kudos for the characters. What I've learned in the previous two books, what they lack in story, they compensate in characters (and sex scenes). Here, the characters were once again great, and only added richness to the plot and story-telling. Dash was wonderful, simply wonderful. Strong, capable, deeply caring...And prone to enormous guilt trips, but after learning his life story it was only to be expected. Elizabeth was his perfect match. Despite her frail appearance, she had nerves of steel and a ruthless streak that slowly emerged under Dash's "careful" tutelage. And Cassie. How cute was she?! As Kane would've said: "I love her. God bless her heart. I love her." After all she went through, she still persevered in keeping her childhood, haggling for chocolate.
Kane made just a small appearance, but once again left his mark. And Dash's realization just confirmed my suspicions. The jibes and little digs are a form of preservation. The sarcastic he gets the more pissed of he is. And it's so obvious who can so easily get to him, even Dash saw it. "Wolves eat cats for dinner. By God, I wanna be a wolf." I can't wait to start on his book. ...more
Eleven years ago Kane Tyler infiltrated one of the government Breed labs and experienced a night of heated "mating frenzy" in the arms of Sherra, a beEleven years ago Kane Tyler infiltrated one of the government Breed labs and experienced a night of heated "mating frenzy" in the arms of Sherra, a beautiful Snow Leopard Breed...Afterward, Kane committed the ultimate mistake by leaving her behind as he went in search of help. Attacked by one of her Pride brothers, he was left fighting for his life for months, only to learn of the destruction of the lab upon his waking.
For the past eleven years he's lived only to avenge Sherra by bringing the Genetic Council to justice and allowing the Breeds the freedom they deserved, when one night Sherra reappears in his life, alive and well...Hating him.
When Kane failed to return all those years ago, Sherra was convinced he'd abandoned her, making him a perfect target for her hate, blaming him for everything she'd endured afterward, the death of their baby...Even now, after learning the truth about what happened, she still strives to hate him, but Kane is adamant to make her see the attraction between them is more than just the mating heat...But with new threats emerging from every corner, will she realized it in time?
Oh. My. God.
I hoped this book would be good, but it certainly exceeded all my expectations. Ms. Leigh has struck the perfect balance between plot and the EC required steam. We were plunged straight back in the the heart of the Breed mating heat, but unlike the first two books, here the sex scenes, though still abundant, didn't deter from the main plot, but complimented it, supporting the story, and propelled it forward. As the story progressed, the characters grew and developed, so did the steamy scenes change, from the initial savage release of two angry, resentful almost-strangers, to the loving joining of two people in love when all the conflicts were resolved and the past resentments were resolved.
The characterization was marvelously done. Kane remained true to himself, consistent with the image he's maintained since the first book, the little digs were still there, even more venomous at the beginning, dissolving into more playful banter as the story progressed. Ms. Leigh has truly created a wonderful character. He's strong, determined to protect everything and everyone he cares for (even if they don't want him to), capable of the deepest love and most seething anger, but when his control finally breaks, he's still gentle, still protective, more reproachful toward himself than anyone else...His feelings toward Sherra were almost palpable, utterly bitter-sweet in their intensity and desperation, and the reader could literally feel how her continual refusals bit into him. Yet, he still persevered, wanting to help, wanting to comfort her, make her happy... Absolutely beautiful.
Sherra was also wonderfully portrayed. So stubborn to shake her silly, so utterly sad to cry with her, so resentful yet desperate to grasp at anything she could, so scared and scarred and in need of comfort and love I forgot every hurtful word she hurled at Kane at the same time I wanted to slap her for being such a stubborn hellcat. The inner scars ran deep, the protective barriers around her were too thick, to high, yet they literally crumbled with every scene, giving in under Kane's sensual, loving assault...But she still continued with her silly stubbornness until it was almost too late, until at last she was woman enough to admit at her failings and brave enough to take a huge leap of faith from the proverbial cliff.
Kane and Sherra's (love) story was such an emotional roller-coaster everything paled in comparison. The supporting cast, though quite a massive body count, did their "job" marvelously, keeping in the back, letting the two of them shine, occasionally providing a valuable insight or word of wisdom, though Sherra refused to listed to reason almost to the end. Another hidden gem of this story were Seth and Dawn. I went to check the blurbs of the next books in the series and I got very, very giddy. *huge grin*
I'd definitely recommend this book to every single fan of paranormal romance, not just the Breed and Leigh fans, although you might consider reading the series from the beginning to get acquainted with "the Breed history", the characters and their relationship and interactions with each other. Though it could definitely be read as a standalone, the general details are explained, it could prove a little difficult to follow for a "novice".
On Halloween night, a mere week before the important Breed Law is passed, Amanda Marion, the president's daughter, is almost kidnapped. Almost, becausOn Halloween night, a mere week before the important Breed Law is passed, Amanda Marion, the president's daughter, is almost kidnapped. Almost, because Kiowa is there to snatch her out of her would-be captor's hands and whisk her away to safety.
Unaware of the "mating issue", Kiowa kisses her to keep her quiet, unleashing the full blast of the hormonal heat on their heads. Unfortunately, he's also a Coyote Breed, the kind the Council bred for jailer duty. The Breed species everyone assumes is soulless...
This was too short, too rushed, too freaking contrived, it shot my concentration to hell. There was too much emphasis on the Breed Law, a few sentences would've been enough, not enough emphasis on Kiowa and Amanda and their budding romance, and once again, what space Ms. Leigh could've used to expand on that one, she spent in steamy, scenes and too much tidbits on Amanda's presumed perversion. If she liked the pain so much, Kiowa should've just left her there to suffer and get it over with, instead of agonizing over the fact he couldn't have her, but couldn't let her go...Blah, blah, blah.
In the end Amanda was right, Kiowa was self-sacrificing (said in a sarcastic tone). I know he had it tough as a kid, but that was no excuse to mope around, feeling sorry for himself most of the time. I got the feeling, that he's made that final decision only so he could suffer more and not because he was doing her any favors. Wasn't he just a knight in shining armor. *eye-roll* At the beginning Amanda was truly what he told her she was - a child. Throwing tantrums because she couldn't have it her way, prejudiced, spoiled, sticking her head in the sand...Made me want to slap her. Repeatedly...But as the story progressed, she turned out to be the more mature of the two.
The saving grace of it all were the secondary characters. It was great seeing Dash again, bless his soul, Callan, Merinus, Doc Martin, and little Cassie (we finally got an explanation on the whole "fairy thing"). And the little tidbit about Dawn and Seth made me want to read her book even more.
If it were just a tad longer, maybe the story would've improved, earning a higher rating, but I seriously doubt it. It's an EC publication after all and no one could accuse EC of caring a fart whether the book had any story at all...Unfortunately. I'd say read it as part of the series, but don't expect any revelations or important facts, and don't expect more than what you know you get from EC. Disappointing....more
The best part of this four-novella anthology was Lora Leigh's Breed novella. Certainly not one of the best stories in the series, and entirely too shThe best part of this four-novella anthology was Lora Leigh's Breed novella. Certainly not one of the best stories in the series, and entirely too short, I barely started enjoying the story when it was already over.
Shiloh Walker's was one of those hidden gems and the first story by the author I've read. I'm sure it won't be the last. The twist of "combining" two utterly different creatures of the lore was a nice move, yet I felt that sort of conflict could've been explored a little further. Unfortunately, with novellas the author has a limited amount of space to cram everything in.
I've never been a fan of Emma Holly's and I certainly shall not become one. Her contribution to this collection was once more a rather boring rendition of been-there-read-that. I just cannot relate to her characters or her stories.
It it Meljean Brook's story that earned the title "Skimmed Through Instead Of Read" for this anthology. I just couldn't "get with the program". Neither the plot nor the characters were able to pull me in, leaving me to just fly through it to continue with the next story....more
Megan Fields has been struggling with her empathic abilities for the better part of her life. It was her inability to block other people's emotions thMegan Fields has been struggling with her empathic abilities for the better part of her life. It was her inability to block other people's emotions that forced her to abandon her life-long dream to work in "serious" law enforcement, so now she makes her living as a sheriff's deputy in a small town in New Mexico.
While patrolling the desert, relishing its quietness and lack of thought and emotion, she discovers two corpses in a shot through SUV. Two Breed corpses. Examining the crime scene she quickly comes under fire herself, surviving only because of the timely intervention of Braden Arness, another Breed.
Braden knows there's more behind the shooting in the gully than serendipity. Someone wants Megan dead and there's no better was to learn why is that than to stick to her like super glue...And when the Mating Heat suddenly kicks in, playing her shadow is even more pleasurable. But unless they uncover the truth of what Megan has seen to warrant her death, the relationship is bound to be a short one.
Okay, so this book is like one of those old movies on a Saturday night, curled on your couch with a bowl of popcorn, perfect to send your brain on vacation. You can just sit back, relax and enjoy the ride. I couldn't find anything that I didn't like in this book, except maybe the whole denial/guilt trip Megan had going for her at the beginning. Okay, you feel bad, you think you're a complete loser, we get it, let's move on...But there was nothing extremely great about this book either, hence the average rating.
I loved Braden, I love most all of them Breeds, but Braden was the first in this series that really made me laugh. They all have that tortured soul down to a T, but this guy didn't let it govern him too much and decided just to merely enjoy the life he's been given. Some of his one-liners were to die for and I found myself looking forward to his snappy repartees. No matter what, he always landed on his feet, maybe it was the DNA.
As mentioned before, Megan was a bit iffy. It looked like Ms. Leigh couldn't quite decide what to do with her. Was she an empath whose ability was more of a curse than a gift, forcing her to live in isolation, avoid confrontations? Or was she someone who liked to be in the thick of it, fighting with all she was worth, loving a good argument as the next girl? The jumping from one to the next was a bit confusing and tiresome after a while. And why do (almost) all heroines have at least one family member in the Special Forces who helped with the Breed rescues? Does that make for a better bonding or something?
I'm looking forward to read more about Megan's cousin, the sheriff...And Jonas. What to say about that guy but "When's his book coming out?". Gotta love the guy, although the silver eye thing is becoming a bit of a cliché. It's time for the authors to find some other turn-on attribute.
Unlike the previous books where the characters had more or less center stage, this one was a little more action oriented and I must confess I've been itching for a fight (figuratively speaking). The whole Mating issues were put a little aside, not completely forgotten, because the phenomenon is still the driving force of the entire series, but the acceptance came a little easier, letting other particulars of the story emerge and lend a helping hand to the plot. So this time the combination was just right. There was drama, angst, sex, romance and action...If everything were blended together a little better, maybe it would've earned a higher rating.
Still, this was a good book not to be missed by the fans of this hot little series. For those first-timers out there, I'd suggest (as always) to start at the beginning and work your way onward....more
Harmony Lancaster, a.k.a. Death, has worked on her assassin career for the past ten years, since her escape from the Breed Labs. She uses every skillHarmony Lancaster, a.k.a. Death, has worked on her assassin career for the past ten years, since her escape from the Breed Labs. She uses every skill she's learned in captivity to rid the world of the people who pray on the innocent, especially children.
But Harmony's hunted. When she escaped, she stole priceless information a lot of people would give anything to possess, including her brother, Jonas Wyatt. When he captures her, instead of enacting the Breed Law for her crimes, he decides to give her another opportunity to redeem herself. He sends her to Broken Butte, N.M. to be Lance Jacobs' deputy. The brilliant twist: Lance is Harmony's mate and Jonas hopes to manipulate the hormonal occurrence enough to make Harmony reveal the sought for information.
Harmony is strong and resilient, always counting on her skills and dark emotions to help her, but she cannot fight the potent attraction between her and Lance. With enemies sprouting out around them, her fight and flight is about to come to an end.
I really liked this book. From the beginning it didn't look like much and I was really afraid it was just like some of the previous not so great book promising a bang but never delivering it. But boy did this one deliver it. And what a bang it was.
We were once again greeted with a strong heroine, but at least Harmony didn't leap into contradictions every two pages. Unlike her predecessors she was pretty much constant and that realization came as a pleasant relief. She was strong, yet she knew her limitations and weaknesses. And despite her past, her reputation, she was capable of so much depth of emotion it was almost scary in its intensity. Lance was her perfect counterpart. His strength of character and utter confidence drew me from the first time he appeared in Megan's Mark and this book just confirmed what amazing guy this wonderful man really is. These two were perfect for each other and it was beautiful to read how much Lance was a balm for Harmony's soul, making the ending so much more of a tear-jerker...Yeah, I cried, I admit it.
I loved the intrigue in this book. There were so many unknowns in the plot it really provided a roller coaster, edge-of-the-seat experience. Friends turned to enemies and enemies turned into friends at the drop of a dime, there was always some shady characters walking that fine line between friend and foe, and the mystery wasn't revealed until the very end (and even then not in its entirety), making this an exhilarating read.
With this book Ms. Leigh expanded this fantasy world a little further, providing fodder for the next books in the series, adding new and utterly unexpected depths to the recurring characters, making the reader even more curious. Kudos for Jonas Wyatt. Ms. Leigh gave us a glimpse of his depth in the previous book, but she truly expanded on his manipulative SOB persona in this one. I think the epilogue wasn't exactly needed, until he finds his mate I don't need to know the guy has a sex life, thank you very much. But at least there's someone else itching to see him mated. I hope he gets a tough-as-nails chick that will make him squirm. Because after what he did in this book alone, he so deserves to suffer a bit.
I most definitely recommend this one. It was a great read, the mix of all the elements I like in my books was much better, promising loads of exciting reads in the future....more
For the past eight years, Scheme Tallant has led a double life as the assistant to her father, General Cyrus Tallant, a member of the Genetics CouncilFor the past eight years, Scheme Tallant has led a double life as the assistant to her father, General Cyrus Tallant, a member of the Genetics Council, and as a spy for the Feline Breeds. Only the man who recruited her, Jonas Wyatt, knows the truth and her cover doesn't make her a popular person in the Breed community...But now Scheme's life is at risk because her father has realized her game and ordered her killed.
Tanner Reynolds, the golden PR boy for the Breed community, has had his eye on Scheme for the past ten years, skirting the fine line between wanting to kill her and possess her, the latter prevailing by a long shot. So when he's conveniently at hand to prevent her assassination, he doesn't think twice in snatching her away.
When she wakes up deep in the belly of a mountain, Scheme has no option but to finally admit her attraction to Tanner. But that doesn't mean she trusts him. Her father has planted a spy in the Breed compound and until she knows for sure Tanner isn't it, she's willing to share her information only with Jonas...
I absolutely adored this book. The interaction between Tanner and Scheme was electric, their plays of cat and mouse fairly invigorating, and the attraction and passion between them combustible. The whole close quarter setting proved to be integral in the development of their relationship and the characters themselves, and once again Ms. Leigh paired the perfect two individuals. They complimented each other, understood each other perfectly even when they were still "enemies", and they had an uncanny ability to see into each other's souls, uncovering secrets and hidden truths in a blink of an eye.
It was wonderful to uncover the beast within the seemingly easy-going Tanner. From what we've seen in previous books he didn't appear to have a serious, vengeful bone in his body, yet the entire perception changed with a snap of fingers. He's one of the most complex characters so far and Scheme was his utter equal in depth and complexity. What she's gone through, the knowledge of what a monster her father was, would've destroyed someone else. She's only gotten more strong and determined for it. And because of that strength and inner demons plaguing her, it was so much more delicious seeing her slowly lowering her guards under Tanner's tender determination.
The entire book had a little bitter-sweet feeling for me. Not the kind to induce incontrollable bawling, but the hands-on-chest-going-awww kind. Especially when Tanner was prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice just to see to her safety. Which brings me to the huge inconsistency in this story. So huge in fact it almost "destroyed" the whole idea of the Mating Heat as we know it. Sure, Cabal provided a rather plausible excuse (apparently it's an animal thing), yet from what we've learned so far, that was stretched so thin it was almost transparent...But it's what provided the story, so I ain't complaining.
It was great seeing a little softer Jonas this time. He was still a manipulative SOB, but at least he seemed to care. And little David Lyons was a riot. I love that kid. But in the end it was Cabal that got the short stick and the awww-ing from before just got stronger and I really can't wait for him to have his HEA. From what he's done for his brother, he most certainly deserves it.
Ms. Leigh backed on the action a little bit in this one, concentrating on the story and the love-hate relationship between Tanner and Scheme, but what little action we did get in the end, was more than the adequate dose. Also, the envelope-pushing voyeuristic addition to the already scorching sex scenes was a nice touch, providing yet another subtle difference from the rest of the series.
A most definitely recommended read and since this book can easily be read as a stand-alone (if you don't mind being left in the dark with some tidbits) I'd recommend it also to those not yet familiar with the Breed series. A truly wonderful and combustible read. A keeper if there ever was one....more
Judging by Lora Leigh's contribution (for her Breed series) I would never have thought this anthology could be bad, but I stood corrected yesterdaUgh.
Judging by Lora Leigh's contribution (for her Breed series) I would never have thought this anthology could be bad, but I stood corrected yesterday when I read the other three stories and remained stock still in my comfy chair, staring at the pages with a disgusted/confused frown on my face.
Let's start at the beginning.
Sherri L. King's Moon Lust was amateurish in tone, style, and use of the language. The end result: the story was so boring and "frigid" I couldn't wait for it to end.
Lori O'Clare's Pack Law was the absolute worst in the bunch, and I dare say the absolute worst novella I've read so far. The premise had so much potential, yet the author turned all those little conflict-makers into a crazed sex fest, obliterating a solid "fact" of werewolf culture...Or is it just the male wolves that mate for life - with ONE partner - leaving the promiscuity to the females? Also the language, though probably used "in context", came off so degrading to women, I merely skimmed through the rest of the story.
Jaci Burton's contribution, Running Mate was a nice reprieve from the first two novellas. It was cute in its own funky kind of way, and I wished it was longer. I would've loved to explore it a little further, maybe polishing the rather abrupt ending. The scene in the clearing was a bit too much, though, if you ask me. It brought a huge kink in the stride of an otherwise good story.
Once again, it is Lora Leigh's Wolfe's Hope that shines the most. I loved it. Yes, it was short, too short in fact, and seriously lacking in story, but still I loved it. This hot, hot, hot novella provided a great distraction, and though I'm not really partial to the EC excuses for stories, the amount of sex and almost invisible story didn't bother me. It was more an itch scratching, not providing any real insight into the leading couple, except they had the hots for each other, but I wasn't that interested in them.
The anthology as a whole is, unfortunately, an (almost) complete waste of paper and reading time. Though it's fifty-fifty in good and awful, the four stories are far from gems you absolutely have to read.
I wouldn't recommend this book, not even to the "Breed followers", since the Breed novella doesn't provide any real insight and any new developments on that front. It's a mere interlude, one that we all can do quite well without.