This had been a solid 3 star book for me up until the final 40 pages or so, when the emotional intensity went through the roof. The last act of Frostb...moreThis had been a solid 3 star book for me up until the final 40 pages or so, when the emotional intensity went through the roof. The last act of Frostbite alone was well worth a 4 star rating.
I spent much of this book not liking Rose. She comes off as being very obnoxious and narcissistic to me (an un-popular opinion in the fandom, I know). But, in the end she stepped up to the plate in a big way, and my heart truly went out to her in that final battle. The entire sequence was dark, bloody, extremely powerful and so, so sad. Kudos to Mead for the way she handled the heavy ending.
I ended up loving the rest of the cast of characters. I have to say, the introduction of Adrian (emerging from the shadows on the porch of that ski lodge) was a scene I will remember for a long time. Adrian's dialogue was always entertaining and I loved him and his sexy, snarky ass to bits.
Speaking of sexy...*cough* Dimitri. Yeah. Not much to say there, other than Yes. Please.
Overall, Frostbite was a definite improvement over the first book in the series, and I'm excited to dig into book 3.(less)
Having just devoured this entire book in one evening, to say that I am feeling a wee bit shell shocked and emotional...more
6 stars. Of course.
Having just devoured this entire book in one evening, to say that I am feeling a wee bit shell shocked and emotional would be putting it rather mildly.
It is not a secret that I love this series. I have made quite the pest of myself by pimping it out to just about everyone I know. But, I can honestly say that with each book Karina Halle exceeds my expectations. Her talent as an author is just staggering to me. And I'm not just saying that as a gushing fangirl. I am genuinely in awe of this woman. So much so that each time I sit down to attempt to write a review, I feel like a complete ass because I never know the right things to say to convey to someone who hasn't read one of her books, just how amazing they really are.
But...I will keep trying.
Thanks to the insane events leading up to this book... (view spoiler)[Perry's possession and subsequent exorcism in On Demon's Wings, and all the revelations revealed through Dex's POV in The Dex Files(hide spoiler)] my anticipation was through the roof going into this story. And as a result of some of the huge events that have gone down over the last couple of books, the Dex & Perry that we see in Into The Hallow are quite different than the ones we were first introduced to at the beginning of the series. That is both good and bad. Bad in the sense that I sort of miss the Perry from Darkhouse...a slightly awkward & insecure firecracker that I felt a kinship with immediately. But, the Perry Palomino that we have in book 6 has been through some intense shit (talk about an understatement), and she has come out the other side both stronger and more closed off. Which is understandable. But still, there were a few times while reading this that I wanted to shake that girl like a snow globe. More about that in a minute. On the good side of things...we also have the new and improved Dex Foray. Who has gone from a slouchy smoker with a rapist mustache to a (somewhat) clean-leaving badass with a 6 pack and a hell of a lot of new found strength. His transformation is for the most part in the hopes of becoming a better man...good enough for Perry. And I have to say...I love the new Dex. Not only is he more confident (though still as pervy as ever, bless his soul), but he is opening himself up to Perry like never before.
Now, here is where my emotions will get the better of me. I shall put my ravings behind a spoiler tag so feel free to skip it. (view spoiler)[When Perry shuts down completely after she and Dex have sex again. THAT was when I wanted...NEEDED to shake that girl like there was no tomorrow. Yes...I know how much he hurt her. I know how much pain she was in. But all she was really doing was punishing Dex (and herself!). Giving him a taste of his own medicine, which quite frankly was childish. Especially after he completely ripped himself open and offered his heart to her on a silver platter. And she still walked away. After everything he had done...all the times he saved her, proved that he was trustworthy and truly cared about her...she threw it all back in his face. Even though she regretted it afterward...like she did when she swapped out his meds with placebos as an 'experiment'...it drove me nuts. I'm obviously biased when it comes to Dex, but I love Perry as well. And I hate to see her sabotaging herself. Gah. Okay....done. (hide spoiler)]
*steps off soapbox*
The decision to take Perry out of the toxic hell that was her parents house and have her move to Seattle with Dex was an excellent one, though I did miss Little Fifteen something fierce. And having said that, I'm hoping to have much more Ada and much less Douchecaneo Maximus in the future (though I know we are probably far from seeing that last of that ginger bastard unfortunately). The location for most of the story...an isolated cabin in the snowy Canadian mountains...was perfect with it's creepy & claustrophobic feel, and as usual the paranormal aspect of the story worked well.
And a review of this book wouldn't be complete without mentioning the llamas. Oh, Twatwaffle. How I enjoyed our short time together.
And then there was the ending.
It was part
While not a traditional cliffhanger, it definitely left me with a lot of questions as to the future of my favorite fictional couple. (view spoiler)[I really hope that Perry has managed to pull her head out of her ass when it comes to being with Dex. But, I have a feeling that things won't be that simple. (hide spoiler)]
This review is all over the place, and not much more than random thoughts slapped together, but...it's what I'm good at and I am nothing if not consistent. :P
As usual, I leave you with a few of my favorite quotes. Slightly spoilery so read at your own risk! :)
"I was trying to be a better man, Perry. For you." I shifted in my seat, "Dex..." "And I'll keep trying," he quickly said, voice low and somber. "Until I get it right."
"You know, we could always make a clothing optional rule around each other. That way we'd always be naked and never have to do laundry."
"Who is it?" I asked teasingly. "Bigfoot," Dex answered from his room. "What do you want, Mr Foot." "Please, just call me Big." I snorted. "You wish." "You know."
"You can talk the talk, but you can't walk the walk." His eyes narrowed in challenge. "Oh, I can walk the walk. I can walk the walk so hard you'll be sore for days."
"Within your light, I lose the madness." "You," He said slowly. "You're the light. You're my light."
Read more of my reviews at my blog: http://ravingbookaddict.blogspot.com["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I honestly thought it was impossible for me to love the snarky, complicated asshat that is Dex Foray any more than I already did. And then I read thi...more I honestly thought it was impossible for me to love the snarky, complicated asshat that is Dex Foray any more than I already did. And then I read this novella, and realized how wrong I was.
Now, it will come as no surprise to anyone who has been following my updates and reviews lately to know that am a HUGE fan of the EIT series. So, my expectations going into this novella were high to begin with. But once again, Karina Halle blew all my expectations out of the water.
Warning: SOME SPOILERS AHEAD.
Dex has been a mystery to fans of the series from the beginning, so having the chance to get a peek inside that twisted, pervy head of his?! Sooo damn gratifying. Getting to see his take on some of the key scenes from the series to date was eye-opening to say the least. For example, finding out that Dex was already having feelings for Perry before the end of their first adventure...made my inner Dex/Perry-shipping fangirl want to do wind sprints around the yard.
Of course getting a glimpse inside Dex's head was eye-opening for many reasons. Least of which was seeing just how much of a pervy weirdo he really is. And I will stand here and proclaim for all the world to hear: I APPROVE!!! :P
"I wondered if she'd let me grab her thick, dark mane and hold it like a pair of reins, if i could make her come with my girth alone or if I'd need to reach down and stroke her until she literally dripped on the carpet."
Um...yeah. I will freely admit I thought that entire chapter, Big Dumb Sex would put me in my grave. I will never listen to that Soundgarden song the same way again, let me tell you! But despite my hormonal overload while reading certain parts of this novella, the main thing I truly loved about The Dex Files was getting to see not only how vulnerable and conflicted Dex was most of the time...but how fiercely protective and loyal he was with Perry right from the beginning. Even when he seemed cold and pushing her away, he was struggling with his feelings for her, and the need to protect himself from letting his guard down and ending up with his heart being ripped apart again.
There was something so vulnerable and restrained about Perry, something that made me want to do stupid, ridiculous things to keep her safe. At the same time, I wanted to draw her out and make her strong, like a diamond from coal. Without even realizing it, I found myself gazing deep into those blue eyes, totally fucking lost in them. My heart did a little flip. Christ, this was not a good idea. My heart of all hearts did not need to be flipping.
Okay. I know what you're thinking; I need to get a hold of myself here. Every time I write a review for one of the books in this series I come off sounding like some smitten fangirl. Well...that's because I AM a smitten fangirl. My love for this series and these characters is ridiculous. And that kind of makes it impossible for me to sound professional when writing about them. So, if that's wrong...so be it!!
So, I will continue to pimp these books out to my friends, and anyone willing to listen. Because they deserve a bigger audience. Karina Halle is a badass force to be reckoned with, and I am so effing glad I allowed myself to get sucked into this incredible series that has been consuming my life for the last few weeks.
She was mine. For the sake of appearances, she was my wife, but she was mine anyway. She didn't know it yet, but I did. It was wrong and it made no sense, but she belonged with me. No one else, not anyone else.(less)
I'm attempting to get my hormones under control after finishing this book, so I will try and keep this revie...moreHoly Va-Jay-Jay, this book was a scorcher!
I'm attempting to get my hormones under control after finishing this book, so I will try and keep this review short and to the point.
Let there be no doubt about it; this book is an insanely, panties-exploding-off-your-body kind of hot. The sex scenes are ridiculously erotic, and while there was one thing I was a little put off by (view spoiler)[ I didn't like the whole 'sweet-butt' (i.e. how the MC's have a woman that they 'share' among themselves) aspect. Yes, I know that this book is about Motorcycle gangs and their lives are different and edgy and all that, but I'm not fond of reading about women being used that way, so that by itself...while a somewhat small part of the story...bothered me. But, that's just a personal preference and might not bother anyone else. (hide spoiler)], the book was a hell of a lot of fun to read.
And, I can't write even a short review of this story without mentioning the man of the hour....Horse. And yes...he has that nickname for the exact reason you think he does.
I am a huge fan of Alpha males, and Horse is about as Alpha as they come. He's sexy, crude, bossy, belligerent, arrogant, and goes after what he wants with a single minded focus that was at times downright scary. He was more than a little too pushy for my taste. As I have said many times before, there is a fine line between a sexy Alpha and an obnoxious asshat. Horse crossed that line more than once for me unfortunately.
However....even with the problems I had, I still really enjoyed this twisted ride on the wild side.
Warning: This book will cause a tingly sensation in your girly bits. Be prepared with an extra supply of panties. You're welcome.
Read more of my reviews at my blog: http://ravingbookaddict.blogspot.com["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Here's my confession: It was the the last day of 2012, and I was looking for a quick, fun read to tide me over until a book I...more5 blisteringly hot stars!
Here's my confession: It was the the last day of 2012, and I was looking for a quick, fun read to tide me over until a book I had pre-ordered was released the following day. The reviews for The Pleasures of Winter were all over the place, but I decided to give it a shot anyway after watching an entertaining interview with the 2 Irish authors who co-wrote the book under the name "Evie Hunter".
All I can say is, holy yowza, batman!
Yes, this book falls firmly into the "What to read after Fifty Shades of Grey" category, but in my opinion...and pay attention to me here, people...This book blows Fifty Shades out of the water.
That's right, I said it. [image error]
Meet Jack Winter.
A Hollywood badass, who's life growing up in Ireland is as murky as a London fog. Enter hard-nosed journalist Abbie, who manages to awaken the 'darker' (aka kinkier) side of Jack's personality. One that he is desperately trying to keep hidden as he attempts to land the movie role of a lifetime.
Throw in a plane crash, a danger-filled trek through a jungle, enough sexual chemistry to light up Manhattan for a week & some mighty interesting new ways to use ice chips and ginger root, and you have a recipe for one helluva sexy ride!
Jack Winter...oh, let me count the ways in which I love thee. Simply put, Jack is everything I wish Christian Grey had been, and so much more. All wrapped up in a cross between Colin Farrel & Hugh Jackman looking package. I mean, seriously? How the hell could you go wrong with that?
The D/s relationship here is sooo much more believable and intense than in FSOG. Jack and Abbie's BDSM lifestyle, while still more 'vanilla' than most (*cough* or so I have been told.), is much more realistic than the uber-watered down version found in FSOG and most of it's clones.
Jack picked her up and set her on her feet. He pulled her against his chest, using one hand to tilt her head back. "Did I hurt you?" "No, you didn't hurt me." A wicked grin dispelled his serious expression. "Would you like me to?"
Now, as to the aforementioned chemistry between Jack and Abbie?! Off. The. Charts. I have read my fair share of erotica in 2012 (probably a lot more than my fair share to be honest lol), but I can honestly say, the scenes between these two were probably some of my all time favorites. These Irish gals know how to write some intense love scenes, let me tell you! And not just the actual sex scenes, but the flirty banter as well. One of my absolute favorite parts of this book were the IM discussions. It starts off as Abbie wanting to talk to a Dominant to try and understand her submissive side, and these 'D/s counseling sessions' are incredibly fun and sexy...even before Abbie finds out that she has in fact been chatting with Jack the whole time. All of these scenes make the reader well aware of the fact that when these two finally do hook up....look out!
Yes, the whole b-story involving the drug lords she was digging into for an article and their pesky habit of trying to kill her was a bit silly and unnecessary. But you know what? I don't really care. Because there were so many other things that I absolutely loved about this book that it's easy to overlook something minor like that. Where as in a book I enjoyed a lot less, it probably would have had me rolling my eyes into the back of my head. But here? Eh...whatever.
So, as you might have guessed...I unabashedly adored this book. While I do enjoy finding an awesome stand-alone book, I have to admit...i kind of wish I had more kinky adventures with Mr Winter to look forward to. ;)
**Side Note** There is a super-short novella (that is more like an extra scene) called A Touch of Winter which should be read after this book. It's hot & sweet and i recommend it as well. :)
Some of my favorite highlights:
"I'm Jack Winter. I've been sleeping with Abbie for the last four nights. Who are you?"
"Bad girl." Jack withdrew his fingers and pressed them to his mouth. "Hot, sweet little Abbie. I can see that you're going to need a lesson about who's in charge here."
"Oh, Ms Marshall. You are a sight for sore eyes". Jack's Irish accent made her nipples peak. "I'm going to taste every inch of you."
"I am not your girl." "oh baby, you will always be my girl."
"Abbie, if you come in, you know what will happen? Tonight won't be feathers and velvet. It's going to be leather and bruises and hard fucking. If that's not what you want, go away now. Come back tomorrow." "Jack," her voice shook. "I want that, too."
"I'm yours? In your dreams." He grabbed her and pulled her tightly against his chest. "In my dreams," he agreed, his voice dropping to a growl. "And in every waking minute too."
At heart she was a vanilla and feathers girl, and he was leather and steel.
This book was probably the most emotional reading experience I have had all year. So beautiful, so heartbreak...moreAnother 6 star book from Kristen Ashley!!
This book was probably the most emotional reading experience I have had all year. So beautiful, so heartbreaking, so uplifting. My emotions have run the gamut, and after reading this book I am completely convinced that Kristen Ashley is a Goddess among women, and has now rocketed up to the top of my favorite author list.
I have to admit, the previous book in this series Lady Luck was my least favorite. Not that I didn't end up enjoying that book, because I definitely did. My main problem was the fact that I wasn't able to connect to the hero Ty, in the way that I had with the leading men from the first two books in the series. But having said that - one of my favorite things about Lady Luck was the glimpse we got to see of police officer Chace Keaton. In fact, one of the best scenes in that book was towards the end when Lexie is having lunch with Chace and notices the way he looks at the shy, quiet, librarian Faye. The level of emotion and longing that KA managed to covey in such a short scene with a secondary character was so moving to me. I absolutely could not wait to dive into Chace & Faye's story.
This may sound silly, but literally from the first chapter I could tell Breathe was something special. So much so that I attempted to read this book slowly in order to truly enjoy the story and the characters. While I am a newbie to the KA universe (this is the 4th book I have read by her) this was without question the best of the bunch so far and I could easily sit here and gush about every little detail that I loved about the book, but I will attempt to keep myself under control. Now, having said that...
I FRAKING LOVED THIS BOOK!!!
Soooo much to fangirl over, so little time....let's start with a girl after my own heart...Faye. KA has a habit of writing amazing female protagonists and I have to say, she outdid herself here. Faye is a librarian by profession, and a book nerd and geek at heart. She constantly has her nose in a book, she adores Battlestar Galactica, Psych & Firefly, has a crazy family and is a 29 year old virgin. And she has been carrying a torch for troubled police officer Chace Keaton for 13 years. I immediately felt connected to Faye for many reasons, especially because of her love for books and all things geeky. She was just a fantastic heroine and I loved her to pieces.
And then there's Chace. *SWOOOOOOOOOOON*
He has a troubled past and many demons. And thankfully KA didn't decide to make us read through hundreds of pages of angst while Chace battled his desire to have something good in his life. Almost from the beginning Chace decides he's not going to let anything or anyone stand in the way of what he wants. And what he wants is Faye.
The love story is pretty much perfect and Chace and Faye's chemistry is off the charts. She's goofy to his serious, and they make the perfect couple you can't help but root for. There are many things standing in the way of their happiness. But once again, I was so happy with the way KA handled the obstacles. All of the ups and downs of their relationship were handled in a believable way, and instead of needlessly ripping the two of them apart again and again just to add drama to the story, Chace & Faye handled everything thrown at them intelligently and most importantly, they handled the problems together.
As always, KA's knack of bringing us a cast of wonderful secondary characters holds true. It was wonderful seeing appearances by the main characters from the previous 3 books in the series (as well as a surprise appearance from a few favorites from another KA series).
I have to make special mention of the character of Miah. He was responsible for a lot of the tears I shed throughout reading this book. The story line involving him and his sister Becky were one of the things I loved most about an already beautiful book. But my gosh...the anguish I felt reading certain parts.
Some of my fave quotes:
"You're beautiful, a good kisser, this is our first date, my bed is in the room, I'm nervous as all heck and I just thought I was going to die after spitting out gum so no, I'm not all right."
He loved her calling him Chace. But, her calling him honey was something else. Something pure. Something magical. Like the first snow of the season falling at night.... It was a little common miracle but even common, that made it no less miraculous.
"All mine", he muttered. "Christ, finally, all mine."
"You do not sleep without me" he paused then finished, "Ever."
The best heroes always have scars.
Now that i have finished this book, I definitely look at it as a gift. I have stated this in other reviews of KA's books, but she is absolutely responsible for bringing back my love of reading. I am so grateful to have discovered her books, and if there is one downside to it all...I am now a full fledged KA Addict and I know there is no cure in sight. But honestly, this is one addiction I can be proud of. :)
My second KA read turned out to be nearly as enjoyable as my first!
So, going into this book I knew it would be almost impossible to sur...more6 stars!
My second KA read turned out to be nearly as enjoyable as my first!
So, going into this book I knew it would be almost impossible to surpass the love I had for the first book in the series, The Gamble. And while I had some issues with Tate in the beginning, and never quite warmed up to Lauren the way I did to Nina, this book still ended up blowing me away.
Let me just put this out there : THIS BOOK IS HUGE.
Technically The Gamble is slightly longer, but I have to admit Sweet Dreams felt like a much longer book. Not because I found it to be boring in any way...just because there was just so much going on. In fact about half way through I literally had to take a break from the book for a few hours just because I felt like I was trying to process too much information at one time and needed to give my poor brain a rest!
Tate is a much different breed of Alpha then my beloved Max was in The Gamble. First of all - Tate is an all out, balls-to-the-wall badass biker mofo. He was also much moodier and more dangerous. And in the beginning he said something about the heroine that I honestly didn't think I would be able to forgive him for. But thankfully I did manage to get past it (as did Lauren), and came to discover that with all his faults, Tate was indeed a wonderfully complex, if slightly cranky Alpha who I definitely ended up falling for in the end.
As I have already said, I was never able to quite warm up to Lauren completely. There were several little things that annoyed me about her personality, and I am never fond of the heroine that every male within a 100 mile radius falls in love with. But having said that, Lauren and Tate's romance was a beautiful thing to watch unfold. I also loved her interactions with Tate's son, Jonas (who completely stole my heart).
The secondary characters were wonderful (I especially loved Shambles and Sunny) and the suspense element in the book worked very well, even though the actual conclusion of that part of the plot seemed a teeny bit rushed. Although considering this book was nearly 600 pages long nothing about it was too rushed. :P
Unlike many other reviewers, the fact that KA is so detail oriented in her stories (descriptions of what the characters are wearing etc) doesn't really bother me. The constant repetitiveness of certain phrases ("sorry?" "Come again?" etc) was a little bit bothersome, but again, KA's story was just so damn engaging that I was gladly able to look past the imperfections and just embrace my love for the characters and their world.
Once again I find myself sooo glad that I decided to give KA's books another try because I haven't enjoyed reading this much in far too long. I can't wait to dive into Lady Luck next!(less)
I am SO grateful to have found this series. Completely original and addictive storytelling. Deeply flawed characters that I still managed to care abou...moreI am SO grateful to have found this series. Completely original and addictive storytelling. Deeply flawed characters that I still managed to care about.
This book also features several characters who speak with what can only be described as a kind of intensely grammatically incorrect dialect that would normally be a deal breaker for me when it comes to reading and enjoying a book. I'm not sure if it was just the fact that the dialect made sense in the scope of the story, or if I have gotten more easy-going in my old age (i'm betting on the first option) but it didn't bother me at all here. In fact, i actually thought the way that my favorite character Trouble spoke was...kind of cool. I know, it's weird, right?!
The only thing keeping me from giving this 5 stars was the fact that I found the story slightly confusing towards the end. But, otherwise...this book totally rocked!(less)