Blooded sets the scene for Amanda Carlson’s new Jessica McClain series with the first full length novel, F...moreReview originally posted at Book Lovers Inc.
Blooded sets the scene for Amanda Carlson’s new Jessica McClain series with the first full length novel, Full Blooded being released in September.
When you take a look at the blurb you actually know what the story is all about. Jessica is born into a wolf pack and shockingly for everyone she is a woman and plainly human too. In her world wolf shifters only have male offspring- a purely testosterone ruled race. Jessica’s birth is a mystery and the majority of her pack believe her to be the “antichrist”. She’s prophecized to bring doom and destruction and the wolves around her are becoming more and more unwilling to accept her in their home.
Meet Jessica- as you can imagine growing up in such a volatile environment isn’t easy on a girl but she came out hard headed and determined. She’s strong- a fighter who might also be a bit reckless. The wolves do have super strength and all but still Jessica is clever enough to actually win confrontations. This actually made me wonder. Perhaps I missed the parts where we learn how she does that but her cunning mind and agility seem to be enough to knock out a wolf. The setting reminded me a bit of Mercy Thompson and her growing up in Bran’s pack. Well yes she never faced this kind of antagonism but still the image was locked in my mind. Jessica is strong- I really don’t want to diminish this but for me she also felt a bit naive. Where does her strong self-confidence come from? How can she really have a chance against a wolf? Perhaps I would have needed more insight into the shifters’ strength and weaknesses but for me her victories seemed to be partly because of her cunning but mostly out of luck.
Blooded centers around confrontation between Jessica and other pack members. Carlson’s fight scenes are vivid and fast paced. I did love Jessica’s snassy mouth even though I still feared she wouldn’t stand a chance. The fights are dirty, bloody and really show us not only the mean side of the wolves but also Jessica’s.
One thing I didn’t like about this novella was the seemingly endless repetitions. There was too much talk about the wolves hating her and she wanting to leave that I actually wanted to scream for her father to let her go just so she would finally shut up about that. Instead I would have loved to get a bit more than a peek at the characters who got by far not enough focus for my taste.
One little thing that always annoys me a bit is an unfitting cover. First I already knew that woman from another book but second Jessica never even touched a gun in this novella so why is it such a focus on the cover? Just as a sidenote.
Blooded gives us a short introduction into what seems to be a fascinating new urban fantasy series. I can’t wait to see how Jessica’s life outside the pack will be and I hope to get a better look into this supernatural world Carlson has created.
I give Blooded: A Jessica McClain Novella 3 stars.(less)
Through all the previous installments in the Bloodhounds series Archer was the character who intrigued me most. We never learned much about him and hi...moreThrough all the previous installments in the Bloodhounds series Archer was the character who intrigued me most. We never learned much about him and his mysterious character with all its edges made me crave this book. And yes I do admit I’m a cover whore and I just HAD to read this one. Look how pretty it is. But back to the book behind this great cover.
In Archer’s Lady we finally get to know the man behind the cool and unattached Bloodhound. Archer is everything I wanted him to be: alpha without being too overbearing, a strong and powerful fighter with a big heart. On the surface he sometimes seems a bit cold and uncaring but with Grace he’s a different person. The way he treats her with care and without judgement warmed my heart. He always does the right thing even when his view of the “job” isn’t what it should be. He puts the needs of the community above his own and gives everything he has to make them feel home and safe again. And let’s not forgive he’s hot and totally rocked my world.
Grace isn’t my favorite heroine in this series though. It’s not like I didn’t like her but well in comparison to the previous books I missed something. Grace has a secret past she’s still running from. She’s ashamed of her deeds and in weak moments the only solution she sees is flight. She struggles with it and in the end she never actually does it. Chrystal Springs was meant to be her new start and now faced with such a desolate and threatening situation she is overwhelmed. When Archer joins the picture her character got more substance in my eyes. Through their conversations we get more insight into her thoughts and reasons for acting the way she does.
The sexual chemistry between Archer and Grace build up a the exact right pace for me. I loved to see them undo each other in with their affection. It’s always nice to see a strong warrior-type man unravel for the woman he’s meant for. Makes me all sappy and gooey inside. *happy sigh*
One thing I completely adored about Archer’s Lady is the community Rogers created in Chrystal Springs. All those people who stayed even though their lives were threatened really warmed my heart. We meet a variety of fascinating characters and thankfully the author took the time to make them more than just an ornament. It’s one of Rogers’ gifts to bring characters to life even in such a short format and I treasure their stories for that.
The story-building was wonderful. From page one I was drawn back into the world. I loved how easily all the needed back-story is woven in without being annoying by useless repetitions. I love the fight scenes and caught myself grabbing the eraser like a madwoman and cheering the good guys on.
I would have loved to see more of the previous characters in this series but by not including this Archer’s Lady is a great story to start reading about this world. I’m pretty sure even a Bloodhound “virgin” would enjoy reading about Grace’s and Archer’s journey.
Archer’s Lady is a splendid addition to the Bloodhound series. A wonderful strong and broody hero and a heroine who awakens his softer side. You will find a great plot, engaging steampunk action and a mystery you will crave to figure out. Archer’s Lady isn’t only for the fans of this series- if you haven’t tried these books yet this one is a perfect choice to start- you won’t regret it.(less)
Julian's Etruscian world is something fresh in the world of monotone mytholical settings. Her new series is again set in this world but it takes place...moreJulian's Etruscian world is something fresh in the world of monotone mytholical settings. Her new series is again set in this world but it takes places before any of her previous series so this is actually a good way to take the chance and jump into her world. It will also show some other aspects to those of you who already fell in love with her work.
In Spell Bound we meet Shea currently on the run with her little brother. An old enemy, Dario Paganelli, is chasing them and they are in dire need of help.The siblings are totally lost in this battle even more so because they don't know why all this is happening. I have to admit that I never really warmed up to Shea. She is a strong heroine but for me she was at times too angsty and self condescending. She blamed herself for so many things and no matter what she didn't seem to want to stop doing it.
Gabriel is a Grigorio deep to the bone. He was raised to be one and it is truly his calling, I really liked him. He is a strong and stubborn man but he also has a soft side who isn't too manly to tell his mother he loves her. *sigh* He has many facets and well he just plain fascinated me- to see his soft and hard edges and the way all those made him the man he is. Just great.
I also really loved the sideplot between Quinn and Serina. So much tension and heartbreak to find in this story. I so hope these two will get their own book. They deserve a shot at love and happiness.
Sadly the mainplot didn't really keep my attention. I can't really point out why. Perhaps it didn't happen enough at times and other times the action just seemed to tumble over each other. The balance felt off. And well I admit it the romance took too long for my taste to really start. The build up was rather slow and my interest started to diminish on the way. Also I missed Julian's humor a bit. There were glimpses of it but not enough to lighten the overall mood of the book.
It seems my expectations were too high this time. It's not like this is a bad book it really isn't but it just didn't grab me as much as her previous novels did. Nonetheless Spell Bound is the start to a new promising series and well I'm already hungering to see who we will meet in the next book (chants Quinn and Serena). If you like your paranormal romances on the serious side this is just the book for you.(less)
I read my fair share of menage stories but I have to admit this one was my first with two woman and a man. I wasn't sure what to expect or if I would...moreI read my fair share of menage stories but I have to admit this one was my first with two woman and a man. I wasn't sure what to expect or if I would even like to read about it. Even more this is a short story and I was a bit scared that the characterization or the world building wouldn't be enough to pitch the threesome line to me. It did work for me and that rather good. *wink*
We meet Sabrina in the middle of the woods waiting for her blind-date with an alpha couple. She knows their names and which pride they belong to but nothing more than that. On the one hand she is excited and hopes to finally find her mates but on the other she's already prepared for dissapointment. Sabrina was fun- she is a beta but still she felt very strong to me. She took a chance with the blind date.
Madeline is a blond sex bomb or that is what her looks want to make us believe. She is after all a strong alpha leading a pack of shifters. She is desperate to find a girl that both, herself and her mate Nick would like. After a bad incident in their past Nick is reluctant to let another woman near Madeline even though they both need the release a beta could give them.
I loved the how this story just felt so smooth. The conversations between these two girls were awesome- they made the story so much more vibrant. The teasing and joking was fun to read about and well it was so hot to see them explore their sexuality. Surprisingly I liked that the girls met alone first and the first sexual encounter only happened between them. It was new and different to me but well very very hot.
The plot itself was a bit predictable but I think this story lives more through the character interaction. Amber Moon was a surprising fast read that will leave you hot and happy at the end. Shifters alone in the woods- what is not to love.(less)
In Hunter’s Prey we revisit Roger’s Bloodhound series set in a wild west themed steampunk world. I do love...moreReview originally posted at Book Lovers Inc.
In Hunter’s Prey we revisit Roger’s Bloodhound series set in a wild west themed steampunk world. I do love what Rogers created here. It’s a unique mix of genres I would have never thought could actually work together. The Bloodhounds are scientifically enhanced Hunters who keep the peace in a post apocalyptic world threatened by the constant fear of another vampire attack. They don’t only embody the power to fight evil they also keep the peace between the humans. Their presence is a constant reminder that nothing will go unpunished. Bloodhounds are bound to their job and it should be their only reason to live. BUT the scientists didn’t anticipate all the results of their tempering with the human body. Bloodhounds need a mate and when they finally find theirs there is nothing else more important out there.
Hunter is a special case even as a Bloodhound. he wasn’t turned like the rest of them were- he never chose this past. He got pushed and now there is no turning back for him. He’s a strong man even for a bloodhound. He is pretty new to the whole Bloodhound game so his knowledge about being one is limited. He fears what he might do even more so because he doesn’t know what he’s capable of. His attraction to Ophelia is something he just doesn’t want to risk. He’s tormented by not knowing what he is and his need to mate.
Ophelia is such a strong and heartfelt woman. A former prostitute she’s now taking care of the Bloodhound manor and organizes everything that accompanies a bunch of wild and hungry shifters. Her dilemma is that she wants to show the gratitude she feels for getting this chance to escape the brothel but on the other hand this job bores her to death. She hates it with all her heart and can’t wait to leave it all behind her. But then there is Hunter and which woman could resist that dark and brooding guy?
I loved to see the roles a bit reversed this time. Usually the guys are the ones taking action but in Hunter’s Prey Ophelia is leading the way. Hunter is taking one step at a time to grow into his new life as a Bloddhound. And OMG these 2 together are so hot. When Hunter finally realize his errors…just thinking of it makes my toes curl.
I loved to see the previous characters again. The familiarity and the newness of the situation create a story that just wouldn’t let me go. I loved to see more of Nate and I so want him to get his own book and HEA in the end.
The plot itself was fast paced but kept enough room for the emotions and romance to build. I love when a romance actually works for me, even in a shorter format as this. Hunter’s Prey is about accepting yourself. Not only for Hunter but also for other characters. It’s a hard topic but Rogers handles it really well.
Hunter’s Prey is a great new addition in the Bloodhound series. It will draw you back into this compelling world and make you fall in love with Hunter and Ophelia. This might just be my favorite in this series so far.