Interesting revelations, nice quirky characters, great to see tie-ins with Sookie's series, although I need to go back and review certain relationshipInteresting revelations, nice quirky characters, great to see tie-ins with Sookie's series, although I need to go back and review certain relationships because of the unexpected new resident. The Reverend sure is busy in both his incarnations!...more
Sunrise Over Brasov by Stephanie Burkhardt is the third book in the ‘Moldavian Moon’ series and is an adult paranormal story that fe 3.5 out of 5 stars
Sunrise Over Brasov by Stephanie Burkhardt is the third book in the ‘Moldavian Moon’ series and is an adult paranormal story that features a complex relationship between witches, werewolves, and vampires that has its basis in blood elements called ferons. There is a synergistic relationship which allows some witches to help manage the feral nature of wolves, but mutations have also affected both the power and the behavior of those in the three lines and further diversify them from their common origins. The rescue of a witch and a werewolf who have been imprisoned for nefarious purposes is complicated by their ignorance of their previous lives and the interconnections with the royalty of several Eastern European regions. The alliance between vampires, werewolves and witches will be tested even as experiments are being performed that may change all of their lives forever.
An intriguing premise forms the underlying framework for this imaginative tale that blends science and fantasy. There are nice twists on some of the conventional wisdom about the types of beings involved, including the shapes that vampires can assume. It was a little difficult to keep up with the implications of the different relationships that are described as so many of the characters seem to be royalty or related to royalty of different countries and I suspect that it would help to have read the other books in the series because there are all kinds of conflicts and secrets that are alluded to. I have a few issues with some of the action in the story, including the fact that the heroine is prized for a certain type of magic that she can produce yet there doesn’t seem to be strong consequences when her status changes, which is puzzling. It also might help to have an appendix to delineate how various characters are connected. I think that this is an entertaining glimpse into a complicated society, and would be enjoyed by those who like sensual tales involving werewolves, witches and vampires.
A copy of this title was provided for review ...more
3.75 stars “The Bronze Fox” by Diana Green is a story that blends elements of steampunk with magic, as a shapeshifter named ToAn intriguing new series
3.75 stars “The Bronze Fox” by Diana Green is a story that blends elements of steampunk with magic, as a shapeshifter named Tobias joins forces with a young woman named Henrietta (aka Etty) who has more talent than she realizes. A rift map that will help in the exploration of the various worlds and aid in the fight against their enemies is but one of the new resources that Tobias will come to rely upon, but the struggle between his heart and his sense of obligation may handicap him more than help, which will risk not only his life but may endanger the very person he seeks to protect. This exciting fantasy story is an entertaining introduction to a new series. I was impressed by the vivid descriptions that plunged the reader into an exciting and exotic world, complete with an intriguing shapeshifter and nifty pieces of equipment that were marvelous combinations of engineering and magic and I liked the unexpected introduction to Henrietta. Things seemed to get a bit bogged down in the middle of the story and the initial momentum stalled out a bit, and then things shifted to more of a science fiction feel to me, with travel to other worlds. There are quite a few dangling threads that will hopefully be better resolved in future stories but this was a nice start to the series and I look forward to reading more adventures featuring these two intriguing individuals.
Review copy provided via Reading Alley in exchange for an honest review....more
"Three Wishes" by Debra Dunbar is an adult contemporary fantasy romance with some paranormal elements that follows Asta, an angel f 3.75 out of 5 stars
"Three Wishes" by Debra Dunbar is an adult contemporary fantasy romance with some paranormal elements that follows Asta, an angel facing her final week of working with humans in Chicago, before she returns to Aaru, where she is the youngest, at less than 3 million years of age. Her surprising fascination with Dar, the Second demon in the household of Iblis, threatens all that she has worked for, and he discovers that the chaos he normally enjoys wreaking must take a back seat to the attractive angel who makes him uncharacteristically concerned about the effects of his actions on others, not to mention jealous of a human. The discovery that one of his fellow demons may be a ticking time bomb makes things even more complicated…for everyone, as roles become confused and mistakes can be fatal.
This story presents a twist on the conflict between angels and demons and highlights some of the blurred lines between the values of each. It is evidently connected to a series about imps and it was a little difficult to figure out the significance of certain things at first with respect to the angel/demon relations without the backstory,. The shift from the prologue to the first chapter was a little jarring and it took some time for its significance to be revealed. I was a little slow to warm up to the story but it began to get more intriguing as matters progressed and I began to enjoy the repartee between Asta and Dar, especially as their relationship heats up. There are inventive twists that make this unlike a typical angel-demon struggle, and the new perspective on the concept of a genie in a bottle adds to the uniqueness of this tale. The ending was a little scrambled and a bit rushed to me, but I suspect that part of this relates to this story being connected with others. A fun light read that will appeal to those who like a demon who can be swayed by an angel, and an angel who turns out to have a few weaknesses, including a love of fashionable clothes
A copy of this story was provided to me for review...more
"Lip Service" by Adele Downs is a sexy contemporary romance with paranormal elements that centers around Linda “Legs” Anderson and her compli3.5 stars
"Lip Service" by Adele Downs is a sexy contemporary romance with paranormal elements that centers around Linda “Legs” Anderson and her complicated relationship with Jack Harris. Despite a sizzling sexual connection, they can’t seem to deepen the relationship into anything more permanent, not only because of Legs’ fear of commitment but also because of her Aunt Ada’s opposition…that is continuing from beyond the grave. Jack is going to have to use all of his considerable inventiveness to win the woman he has been in love with for most of his life, but even that may not be enough, because who can fight a determined ghost?
This is a quick read that has a great sense of small town life, some nice twists, lots of heat, and poignant moments. The characters frustrated me a bit because they continue to vacillate between following up on what they theoretically felt from the very beginning of their relationship and complying with other people’s wishes so I wasn’t convinced of their dedication to each other at first, and they don’t always behave in a manner that would be logical to me, but there are definitely spicy scenes to remind one that these two are on the same page when it comes to their intimate encounters (like bringing new meaning to idea of stenciling on one’s walls). If you’re looking for a fast sexy read with an unusual antagonist throwing obstacles in the path of two lovers, this is the story for you.
A copy of the title was provided to me for my honest review ...more
“Sated: A Dark Romance” by Charity Parkerson is an erotic romance with a twist that centers around a woman named Arbo4.5 stars Eerie and erotic romance
“Sated: A Dark Romance” by Charity Parkerson is an erotic romance with a twist that centers around a woman named Arbor Sinclair and her relationships with several sexy men. The searing passion she finds with rock stars Killian Moore and Lyric Wynters seems too good to last, and her growing attraction to Detective Trey Murphy is even more confusing as the world around her seems to get less familiar with each passing day. Trey’s focus on Satanic and ritualistic homicides seems appropriate for Louisiana, but she’s far more interested in his ability to help sort out the mystery her life’s become.
This is one of those stories that ensnares the reader a little at a time until one is firmly entangled in a story that almost seems familiar until it suddenly takes an unexpected right turn. The delicious imagery and sensual interludes divert one from remembering that ‘A Dark Romance’ is part of the title until little clues start being sprinkled in. I love the passion and emotionalism that is created between the characters and the intensity of the feelings that is so deftly depicted even as I was shocked and saddened by some of the revelations. One can’t help but sigh when reading passages such as “Killian and Lyric were two parts of a whole. They lived their lives incomplete, until Arbor.” and the shock that accompanies the subsequent journal entries make this a deliciously chilling tale that will remain memorable for me. I will definitely be on the lookout for more titles by this talented author.
Review copy provided via Reading Alley in exchange for an honest review....more
“Nor Iron Bars a Cage” by Kaje Harper is a dark m/m fantasy tale that centers on Lyon, a man who is still learning to cope with the afteref4.75 stars
“Nor Iron Bars a Cage” by Kaje Harper is a dark m/m fantasy tale that centers on Lyon, a man who is still learning to cope with the aftereffects of his horrific imprisonment by a wraith conjured up by his former mentor. His progress has been slow and is abruptly disrupted when his long-lost friend, Tobias, requests his assistance in the name of their king. The inexorable combination of force and compassion that Tobias applies to convince Lyon to comply with the king’s commands rekindles both their friendship and the nightmares that Lyon has been struggling to suppress. Little do they know that the request may also conjure up much more than either is prepared to handle.
This mesmerizing tale blends a fascinating character study with an intriguing and chilling portrait of the dangers of a thirst for knowledge. The deep emotionalism evoked by the author portrays a beautiful and sensitive unfolding of a relationship fraught with complications, not least of which are the scars—both internal and external—which hinder healing. It was fascinating watching the personal conflicts play out against the dramatic backdrop of an international skirmish even as arcane forces are brought into play. The wry self-knowledge and amazing inner strength displayed by a man who considers himself weak contrasts nicely with the determination and self-assurance of his long-lost friend who wants to be even more.
There are delicious twists and turns in the paranormal aspects of the story even as one is spellbound by the struggle that unfolds and one can’t help but wince for the pain experienced and cheer for each victory, no matter how apparently trivial it seems. I adored Tobin’s sensitivity and understanding as he woos Lyon out of his shell even as I enjoyed his earthiness and appreciation of his own sensuality.
This was the first work that I have read by Ms. Harper, and it prompted me to immediately look for others penned by her, with the result that I now have a new name to add to my favorites list, and thankfully, several series to catch up on which will increase my TBR mountain exponentially, but I am definitely NOT complaining. I would love to see more stories with this pair in them as well, but for now, I will content myself with exploring other tales by this very talented author.
"In His Keeping" by Maya Banks is part of the ‘Slow Burn’ series that combines exotic paranormal powers and thrilling romantic suspense. This particul"In His Keeping" by Maya Banks is part of the ‘Slow Burn’ series that combines exotic paranormal powers and thrilling romantic suspense. This particular story centers around Arial (Ari) Rochester, who suddenly needs to utilize the remarkable psychic powers that she has had minimal experience developing. Danger results in her contacting Beau Devereaux, and enlisting the help of his security agency, but has the unexpected result of her discovering ties to the Devereaux family that neither realized existed. Unfortunately, since threats escalate and threaten both of their respective families, they may not have the time or luxury of exploring the relationship and seeing where it can lead, unless Ari learns to harness her abilities in a hurry and survives long enough to do so.
This imaginative tale combines wondrous concepts of the potential use of extraordinary mental abilities with an exciting suspenseful story that follows the age-old struggle between good and evil. Although the opening is a little slow and the writing not quite as crisp as I have come to expect due to the exciting ‘KGI’ series , the action eventually begins to intensify and develops into the delicious combination of sizzling intimacy and exciting fight scenes that characterize this author’s works. The heroine was a bit irksome to me at first, as I prefer proactive and capable females, but she grew nicely during the course of the story. I was able to read this work as a stand-alone, although I am sure that it would be helpful to learn the story behind the events alluded to that center around a couple of the secondary characters, who have a cameo in this book. The villains are a little nebulous, but definitely evil, and I suspect that there is an underlying threat that will tie the entire series together. I am always fascinated by the concept of psychic phenomena, and the differing abilities described add a nice twist to this fun read which celebrates romance and adventure, and I look forward to reading more about the Devereaux family and the mates who change their lives.
A copy of this title was provided to me for an honest review...more
“Dark Wolf Enterprises” by A.M. Griffin introduces accountant Trudy Hollander to an entirely different world when what she thinks is her big break emb“Dark Wolf Enterprises” by A.M. Griffin introduces accountant Trudy Hollander to an entirely different world when what she thinks is her big break embroils her in an embezzling issue that involves one of three brothers who run a very successful family-owned company. Kristof Farkas is impressed by the woman who is savvy enough to ferret out the discrepancies in his company’s books but he refuses to listen to his wolf who is determined to keep the feisty female in their life. They have to stay alive long enough to work out their relationship and find the culprit.
This is a great introduction to a shifter family that is coexisting successfully with humans and I always enjoy stories that explore the challenge of introducing a human to the shifter world. The ending is a little abrupt and leaves room for a continued exploration of the mystery that brings the main characters together but there is a nice introduction to the various members of the Farkas family and hopefully each of the siblings will get his or her time in the spotlight. A nice beginning to the series.
I had the pleasure of reading this novella as part of the "Brought to His Knees Anthology...more
"Unbinding" (World of the Lupi) by Eileen Wilks is an exciting tale in the ‘Novel of the Lupi’ series that is a fantastic urban fantasy/paran4.5 stars
"Unbinding" (World of the Lupi) by Eileen Wilks is an exciting tale in the ‘Novel of the Lupi’ series that is a fantastic urban fantasy/paranormal collection. This particular story spotlights the Queen of Winter’s former Hellhound, Nathan, and his mate, Kai Tallman Michalski, who is still learning how to use her mindhealing talent. Their sojourn on earth is abruptly interrupted by inexplicable occurrences that gradually point to the dismaying conclusion that someone is determined to punish or kill one or both of them...and even the formidable protection afforded by her familiar, the chameleon Dell, and the support of the Nokolai clan may not be enough to fight off this particular enemy.
This is one of my very favorite paranormal series because it is so densely textured with fantastical beings and melds various pantheons with such grace and dexterity. Understandably, someone new to the series may become a little lost by the interconnections among the various characters, yet still mesmerized by the beauty of this universe and the intensity of the action taking place. Ideally, it is advisable to read the series from the beginning but I suspect that one can infer a lot of the information through hints that are scattered throughout the story and at least follow the main themes.
One of the most appealing facets of these stories is the unquestioning loyalty that allows each character to risk the most dangerous of tasks and have faith that someone or someones will be there to guard and support. The mystical tie that the various beings feel for each other, whether it is the clan of lupi to their Rho, Kai and her familiar, Dell, or between mates such as Nathan and Kai or Benedict and Arjenie, gives them an intense relationship that is always remarkable and heartwarming to observe. I love the contrast between the rigid formality and hierarchy inherent in pack life, and the wild cards provided by the humans (and other beings) who have become important to the lupi. This particular story is a bit intense to read, given the physical and sexual torture that is being wrought on various characters, but quite a roller-coaster ride of magic, adventure and machinations, with a fascinating twist of FBI involvement and a brief cameo by the Elder Sam (a dragon) and the Navaho people. Another fun read that blends magic and pragmatic concerns in a mesmerizing story.