I really, really liked this one. It’s almost like a fairy tale where the ugly duckling turns...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
I really, really liked this one. It’s almost like a fairy tale where the ugly duckling turns into a beautiful swan and two men – Ling and Prince Damarion – are so lonely their lives have been completely miserable. Now, they are both in positions that make their lives even more hellacious causing Ling to runaway and find employment in Prince Rion’s castle. From there they meet when no other servant wants to take Rion his meal and what eventually blossoms is not only a friendship but a love as well.
There’s something about this short little story that really gets to me. I just adored it and I loved both Ling and Rion. Where Ling has been hated for simply being the son of the Oracle, Rion has been hated for being the son of the False King. They are like two peas in a pod and completely understand each other because of what they’ve had to endure simply for being born they way they were. It’s sad but it’s also sweet the way they connect so easily. The story is about that connection but also about them finding out the truth and really understanding who they are inside. And let’s just say, they are both surprised in what they end up finding out by the end.
My only issues with this one is that, again, it is too short. I would have loved to see Ling and Rion while they got to know each other. So many conversations and pranks they played that was just told instead of shown. I missed out on that. Another thing is that six years have passed since events in The Oracle's Flame end and A LOT has happened such as how Prince Edan got the throne back. I was a little confused because we didn’t get to see that taking place in The Oracle's Flame nor in this book so I was a little disappointed we didn’t experience something that seemed so crucial.
All in all, this was still a good story. It’s sweet and a little sad but short enough that you could read it in under an hour. I really enjoyed it and I’m eagerly awaiting the next installment, The Oracle’s Golem!(less)
Wow, this book was just… amazing. From the beginning I was intrigued by the tale Ms...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
Wow, this book was just… amazing. From the beginning I was intrigued by the tale Ms. Derr was weaving but as the story progressed, I became more and more engrossed in the dangerous world that harbors so many varied but deadly creatures.
I can’t even begin to describe just what that world is so I will leave you to find out. What I will say is that this book contains a lot of different elements: a wish granted, a night of debauchery, hidden strengths and developing friendships and love. Not to mention there’s an evil-being right in the Legion’s mix, chaos reigning everywhere and so many loyal, faithful beings dying to stop such evilness with sacrifices and an ultimate bond that just might not be enough to save everyone. Now, if all that doesn’t intrigue you… well, I don’t know what will!
One of the reasons I enjoy fantasy is because of the worlds that are created. Ms. Derr is one of my favorite fantasy writers because even with how many books she’s written, they all still seem to be different and unique. This one is no different and is so elaborate that there are layers upon layers of how this world became and how it operates. For someone like me, it’s extremely captivating and I loved reading every single detail about the war that ravaged the countries and ultimately made it into what it is now.
At the same time, the characters were just as fascinating. At first, Raffé is a bitter but self-loathing individual who only sacrifices himself so that he and his family won’t be killed. After his Blooding, he takes to his position as a Prince of the Blood remarkably well. He was like the ugly duckling that became a beautiful swan. He changes so much over the course of the book that by the end, he is barely like his old self but he’s better now: aggressive, sure of himself, a warrior.
Cambord (which isn’t his real name but I don’t want to give that away) is first attracted to Raffé when he’s an ugly duckling but grows more enamored with the Princeling as the story goes on to the point that his obsessive, possessive behavior becomes dangerous to everyone. Honestly, I loved this because even though Cambord was dangerous, he was only deadly to those who threatened his Prince. I couldn’t get enough of it and the soul-deep bond they created and if I could change anything, I would just ask for a little more time that Raffé and Cambord had together.
My only issue with the story (and the reason I can’t give it 5 stars) is that there were so many different creatures, so many secondary characters, so much power I couldn’t keep it all straight. Whenever someone was brought it, I would think I understood their role in the Legion but then they’d do something that would make me think they weren’t the creature I thought they were supposed to be. It was a little overwhelming. Also, I still was confused on how the villain was able to open so many seals when he was leagues away from the sacrificial sites. Beyond that, there were a few inconsistencies throughout the text. For example, the mention that someone ‘stood abruptly’ when they were already standing or during one sex scene – ‘reaching around Raffé’ when Raffé was initially on his back with no mention of him turning over. It happened enough times for me to notice but not enough to dim my enjoyment – just worth a mention.
In the end, when I finished the book, I couldn’t help but give a satisfied sigh. It was a great book that had me worried at times things wouldn’t work out but also giddy when certain events took place. I went through a wide range of emotions while reading Of Last Resort and honestly, that right there is what made this book so amazing. It’s not often that a story literally pulls so many emotions from me. If you’re a fantasy lover and you enjoy characters that evolve greatly with a lot of action and suspense, give this one a try because I doubt you’ll be disappointed with it.(less)
Marcus Stenhill, Viscount of Westwood, is on his way home with tea for his grandmother when...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
Marcus Stenhill, Viscount of Westwood, is on his way home with tea for his grandmother when he stumbles upon a man getting beat up. Chasing off the ruffians, he has every intention of helping the man who can’t even stay conscious. What Marcus didn’t realize is the guy he saved, Robin Harris, is the very person who created the machine that killed his father. With mixed feelings, Marcus still helps Robin because it’s the right thing to do. On top of that, Marcus and Robin share an attraction that is a crime to indulge in but will they risk everything for the love that’s obviously there?
Awww, how sweet this story was! Even with how short it was, I totally fell in love with the characters. Robin is a clumsy, absent-minded genius/scientist that does what he can to help people in need of mechanical medical help. He’s had a rough life after being taken advantage of and now he’s just trying to survive in it. Marcus shows up and changes everything in Robin’s life for the better. I adored Marcus and his inability to just leave Robin after he found out who he was.
Marcus is the perfect gentleman who just wants to help Robin get healthy and whole. Not to mention he’d love to do some other naughty stuff to the awkward scientist! I loved them together and when they finally got together, it was all the more sweet because they’re perfect for one another. I want to mention that Marcus’ grandmother is a freaking hoot! That lady is all kinds of insane awesomeness. She wasn’t the classic stick-in-the-mud ton lady but had a lot of personality that supported both Marcus and Robin. I adored her so much!
I only had two big issues with this one. One, the beginning was rocky for me. I kept getting confused on what Marcus was talking about. I don’t know if it was because the words used to describe the situation of the world were outside of my vocabulary, which made it difficult to understand, or something else. Secondly, the transition between some chapters were choppy to the point when a new chapter started, I wasn’t sure how much time passed, how Marcus and Robin got to the point they were in or exactly what they’ve done between the time that passed. Although, there is a brief mention a few times on what has occurred during the passing of time, I would have liked to experience some of it.
In the end, even with my little niggles, I still really enjoyed this story. It’s a good mix of steampunk with a hint of magic. I loved that Ms. Ford had a world destroyed by the makings of such magical machinery, it was interesting to say the least! If you’re looking for something short but unique and intriguing, give this one a try because it definitely fits the bill!(less)
Nikki’s attempts at avoiding Anderson finally end when Anderson not-so-subtly lets her know...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
Nikki’s attempts at avoiding Anderson finally end when Anderson not-so-subtly lets her know he’s done waiting. Now she’s forced to find Konstantin, the leader of the Olympians who’s gone into hiding, because Anderson wants retribution. But Nikki has her doubts and unwilling to lead a man to his death. That is, until a series of events happen to Nikki that make her suddenly doubt Konstantin is her biggest threat. With Emma boldly threatening her and Anderson acting funny, can she really trust her own instincts?
With each book in this series, I can’t help but love Nikki Glass more and more. Some of the things she does, I don’t agree with but overall I love her indecision when it comes to everything, the way she tries to master her Huntress abilities and her conflicting feelings towards everything. At the same time, she always manages to get into situations that are very action-packed and keep me on the edge of my seat. I also like that she’s becoming more and more adjusted to her life as a Liberi and how she can stick up to Anderson when it’s necessary.
Her relationship with Anderson is definitely turning into something that makes me think that this series might turn into a love triangle or at least the love interest will no longer be noticeably Jamaal. Her feelings towards Jamaal are still strong and we learn that Jamaal has feelings just as intense. However, Jamaal is just now starting to get his death magic under control in the form of Sita, his shadow animal. Unfortunately, Sita is one fiercely possessive and jealous tiger and causes tension between Jamaal and Nikki.
While I loved the fact that there was an added conflict of Sita and the fact that Nikki and Jamaal finally make headway in their relationship, I didn’t really like the push and pull that Jamaal was doing. He desires Nikki and he obviously wants her but he’s unwilling to make any point of compromise to attempt anything with her. I love their connection but I don’t like that Nikki is the one constantly trying to take things further. Even with Sita, I can’t help but think Jamaal could find a way to have the two girls in his life get along.
As it is, I still really enjoyed this story. While it doesn’t have as much suspense and action as the previous stories, it is still fast-paced and has enough action to keep me intrigued. But, wow, can I just say the way this one ended?! HOLY SHIT! I can’t wait to read the next one in this series because there’s bound to be some serious repercussions, if the way it ended is anything to go by! Eagerly awaiting the next installment and seriously hope I won’t have to wait that long!(less)
You know when you’ve just finished a great book and you sit there thinking, “How the hell am I supposed to review this?” Yeah, well, that’s exactly ho...moreYou know when you’ve just finished a great book and you sit there thinking, “How the hell am I supposed to review this?” Yeah, well, that’s exactly how I felt once I finished Throne of Glass.
To say I adored the story would be a gross understatement. I devoured this book within hours (as a slow reader that’s an amazing thing) and even bought the print editions of not just the first but the second book, Crown of Midnight, and the collection of short stories, The Assassin's Blade, right after I finished it.
Throne of Glass is about Celaena Sardothien, who earned the title of Adarlan’s Assassin, before she was caught and sentenced to slavery in the Salt Mines of Endovier. Now a year after her sentencing, an unexpected offer comes her way in the form of Adarlan’s Crown Prince, who gives her the option of her freedom… for a price. All she has to do is defeat twenty-three other candidates for the role of King’s Champion. If she wins, three years of service is all that separates her from complete freedom.
The story is centered around Celaena’s fight for that freedom, the numerous tests she has to compete in to advance to the next round but most of all, Celaena’s just been thrust into a new and unfamiliar world where evil magic is being used to kill off her competitors. On top of that, she has the Captain of the Guard who hates her and doesn’t trust her and the Crown Prince who’s getting a little too close for everybody’s comfort. Will she claim the title of King’s Champion or will all her efforts be for nothing?
Honestly, there’s so much that happens I don’t want to spoiler any of it. Some people won’t like this book because of the simple fact it’s not strictly a romance. While I’m also hesitant to call it Young Adult (things get very gruesome at times), I will admit that there’s ‘hints’ of a romance brewing. Actually, there’s hints that a love triangle is already starting and while I normally don’t like love triangles, it worked very well in this story because the possible love interests are so different. One of them I believe suits Celaena better than the other but that’s just my opinion (and I’m also biased because I just adored Chaol ^_^). Also, readers should be aware that these characters are very young; Celaena is only eighteen, Dorian is nineteen and Chaol is twenty-two.
One thing I loved about this book, though, was the characters. While Celaena is the main voice, POV shifts to multiple people that are significant to the story. Some of them I liked more than others (a personal preference because I hated Kaltain) but all were what made the story the way it is. As characters, Celaena, Chaol and Dorian are all very well in-depth. Celaena, while an assassin, is a little rusty in her skills but she’s also emotionally damaged in more ways than one. She’s surly and flippant but makes it her goal to get a rise out of Chaol or Dorian if she can. She has a lot of layers that still haven’t been uncovered but I loved being able to see some of them being peeled back by Chaol and Dorian. Most of all, Celaena is a fragile, vulnerable young woman who needs protecting in some ways and Chaol and Dorian unintentionally give her that. Dorian is the classic charming prince although he’s one that is disgusted with his father, the King. He’s not quite a man but Celaena makes him want to become one. Chaol is an intriguing mix between a sad, lost man and a severe, all business captain. All three characters are very young and, honestly, still have a lot of maturing to do even though they’ve been forced to live through some harsh realities.
As a huge fan of fantasy, one of the things I look forward to the most is the new world I get to discover. With Throne of Glass, while we don’t get a full detailed description of this new place as a whole, I have no doubt we’ll get more of it as the series progresses and Celaena journeys to different countries. What there is of the world, is phenomenal. I loved that it was a mix of a historical setting and a fantasy one with a flair of magic but the brutality that has consumed the world since the King has been decimating countries was interesting to read about and also quite sad.
In the end, this was an amazing story. I loved experiencing the growth in all the characters, as well as, seeing the tests that Celaena has to go through, not to mention the secondary characters made things more interesting. The mystery surrounding the evil inside the castle was a blast to uncover and while I have questions about some of the things that happened during the book, I think I’ll get my answers as we learn more about Celaena and why she’s so important to everything.
I definitely recommend this to anyone who is a fantasy lover, who doesn’t mind the romance developing over several books because while there’s only a hint of it in Throne of Glass, I have a feeling it’s going to be an epic one by the time the series finishes!
On the island of Sagrario, Francis Holland is just one of the many men wanting a safe and we...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
On the island of Sagrario, Francis Holland is just one of the many men wanting a safe and welcome home to be who they really are: men who love other men. Francis has been on Sagrario just long enough to feel the effects of being alone but when he’s tasked with cleaning up a mess on the shore, his life changes forever when he finds Wick, an unconscious merman, and brings him back to health. Before he realizes it, Wick and Francis develop a relationship that is necessary to keep on living but how can they have a lasting relationship when one is bound to the sea and the other to land?
Who knew such a little story could pack such a big punch?! I sure didn’t! This one is short and sweet but it had me almost crying when I thought things weren’t going to work out. I loved the fact that there was such a huge language barrier between Wick and Francis to the point they couldn’t necessarily understand each other. The fact that Francis is from the land and Wick is from the sea created enough conflict to make me want to keep reading and see how everything turned out.
While the characters don’t have as much depth as I would have liked (especially Wick), I still enjoyed how they formed their relationship and what of their personalities we saw. Francis is lonely and just wants someone to spend his life with while Wick is mysterious and drawn to who Francis is. It was interesting to see the effect they both had on one another and the all-consuming emotions they shared.
My only qualms about this one is that I wish it were longer. The world is fascinating and I loved the historical/fantasy combo but I really would have liked to know how Wick fits into that world after everything is said and done. Not to mention being able to finally see Wick and Francis hold an actual verbal conversation or being explained on how Wick was able to put himself and Francis on more even footing. I also had a few more questions about Wick, how he ended up on shore, how he got injured, etc.
All in all, this was a short but sweet, feel good story that had just enough angst to make my heart clench. It was a story I loved reading and didn’t want to stop and I hope the author continues with Francis and Wick’s tale because I’d love to know how they both adapt to their new relationship. Definitely recommended if you’re looking for something short but that will leave you happy and satisfied.(less)
On the recommendation of his brother, Lord Vellem from Belemere is arranged to marr...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
On the recommendation of his brother, Lord Vellem from Belemere is arranged to marry Prince Perdith of Tallideth in an attempt to end the war between the two countries. With peace in sight and the wedding only months away, things take a decidedly bad turn when more than one attempt on Vellem’s life is made, pushing the marriage to happen sooner than desired. Unfortunately, that doesn’t stop tragedy from striking again in a way that changes both Vellam and Perdith’s lives. Now with more responsibilities then they ever thought they’d have, they both have to get accustomed to not only ruling a kingdom but having a stranger as a husband.
Well, this was not the story I was expecting! To be honest, I was thinking this would be closer to steampunk themed than fantasy but how wrong I was! This book had so much happening and so much loss that it was very tragic and heart-wrenching at times. It’s filled with betrayal and suspicion and just when things start looking up, something happens that brings everyones’ hostilities back up and makes things way more tense then they were to begin with. Yes, I am purposely being vague! LOL. But this is the type of book that is enjoyed much more when you experience the revealing at the same time as the characters. It’s a great book and an even better journey especially if you love fantasies.
Speaking of the characters, there will be readers that don’t like Perdith for the way he acts but it was easy for me to understand him and what he’s been through. Originally low-key and wrapped up in numbers, he’s forced to bring out the King in himself and change in a way that others will respect. Underneath it all, he’s still shy and nervous but lets Vellem see his wild and care-free side in bed. At the same time, Vellem is this lowly soldier that doesn’t understand politics even though he knows his war strategies. He’s been through a lot and while he might be clueless in being Regent, he knows how to demolish and rebuild structures. The two together are a force to be reckoned with and brings truth to the saying, “Two heads are better than one”.
My only issues with this story was that it needed more editing. There were a lot of typos and punctuation errors not to mention Vellem’s dragon, Krisanta, (who is just so lovable and amazing!) tended to be forgotten a lot then would show up out of the blue. Also, some chapters picked up weeks/months after certain events were trying to be decided. It was a tad confusing because I couldn’t figure out exactly how much time had passed and I really would have liked to see some of these scenes played out so that we could see when/how plans were formed. I am left with one question that was never answered, though. How in the world are Vellem and Perdith supposed to produce an heir that’s of BOTH their bloods?! Am I sensing a sequel?? With hopefully mpreg?! Oh, yeah, I went there, people!
Beside that, this was an amazing book. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Ms. Derr writes fantastic fantasies that I can’t get enough of. It still amazes me with how much she’s written that she can come up with unique worlds and this one is no different. If you enjoy a good fantasy with some mystery, deception, a little angst, great characters and an amazing world, give this one a try. It’s definitely not worth missing!(less)
Now that Nikki's firmly claimed Anderson's ragtag group of Liberi as her home and i...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
Now that Nikki's firmly claimed Anderson's ragtag group of Liberi as her home and immortal family, she's still trying to get used to life working for Anderson. When the Oracle from the Olympians comes to Anderson for help in catching a descendant who's going on a killing spree, she's forced into hunting him down. The only problem is this descendant is not only wielding shadow jackals as his weapon but he's also insane who has no issues killing his own kind... but one Liberi can't kill another, right?
Ahhhh, Nikki *sigh* This was such a fun, fast-paced novel I literally devoured it. Nikki is still her slightly snarky self that is determined to keep her old life or at least a part of it. With this one, we see a little more of how her powers work. We also see her relationship (if you can even call it that) with Jamaal grow deeper even if it is on rocky ground. On top of that, things get very deadly for Nikki when she not only has to worry about an enemy from the outside but from the inside as well.
I think my only issue is how Nikki treated Blake. I understood why she didn't like Blake and Steph starting a relationship but at the same time, considering everything Blake has done to keep Steph safe, I expected Nikki to cut him a little slack. Not to mention, Steph knew exactly what she was getting into and told Nikki over and over that she would take her chances. Live and let live is what Nikki should have done especially since Steph has the same feelings towards Jamaal as Nikki has towards Blake.
There were other things that I feel I should mention only because I know readers will take some issue with them. Such as Emma's misplaced jealousy towards Nikki that turned her into a huge bitch, Nikki's back and forth on what to do with Anubis's descendant and even the special attention Anderson is giving Nikki. All of these things, I didn't have a problem with because all them will no doubt lead to what happens in the next book, which I think might be epic. On top of that, Nikki's constant questioning on what to do with the deadly descendant separates her from the other Liberi and shows to me that she's still human even if she is immortal now.
In the end, this was a gripping tale I was sucked into right from the start. I couldn't put it down once I started it and while I'm a little nervous where the story is heading (love triangle? Please no!) I can't wait to read more of it.(less)
With every new year that rolls around, I like to read a whole series to start it off right. This year was hard to decide because I wanted one that didn’t have half a dozen books or more but also one that didn’t only have one or two stories. I came across the cover of Dark Descendant and knew right then, this would be that series. Yes, I am a cover whore :P
Nikki Glass is a PI who literally has a gift from the gods. As a descendant of Artemis, the Goddess of the Hunt and a Moon Goddess, she can find anything. When Nikki’s latest client ends his life, his power of immortality transfers to her. Unfortunately for Nikki, that means she just became a Liberi and forced into a new reality where she’s no longer a mortal or understands any of what a descendant of the gods mean. Add to that, she now has half a dozen people thinking she’s a spy and the Olympians, another group of descendants, thinking she’ll be a useful weapon. What’s a girl to do when she’s being pulled in every direction but just wants everything to go back to normal?
Aww, man! How I loved this book! I will freely admit that I’m slightly biased because I absolutely loved the potential love interest (who I shall not name). Readers should know that this isn’t a romance, it’s a mystery with some suspense and action. While there are romantic-ish feelings on Nikki’s part, her love life is still in the baby stage so, I’m assuming, over the next few books it’ll develop into something. Hopefully.
Now, let’s talk about Nikki. She’s stubborn, to say the least, but I found her pretty badass. Okay, yes, sometimes she acted a little naive or stupid in a situation (she could have easily called in for backup instead of doing things alone) but I still loved her. She has a tendency to get in sticky, dangerous and deadly situations that caused a lot of conflict. I also loved the other characters like Jamaal, Anderson and Blake. Each of them are mysterious in their own way and I couldn’t get enough of seeing them.
The story is about Nikki trying to get comfortable with what she’s now become. On top of that, she aligns with Anderson and his gang of Liberi in an attempt to save her family from being hurt by the Olympians. The only thing Anderson asks is to find his wife, Emma. So, almost the whole story is about Nikki learning to use her abilities to find Emma. During all that, she’s slowly learning the rules about being a Liberi and what she can and cannot do. I loved that there was some intense moments like Jamaal’s punishment.
My only issues with the story is that some of Nikki’s monologue is very repetitive (family issues, etc.). Also, there were some discoveries from Nikki that seemed pointless to the plot (Nikki finding Emma’s ring) because it made me wonder how Emma’s ring got where it was, which was never answered.
In the end, I devoured this novel within a few hours. It was such a good story, easy to read with likeable characters and an intriguing plot. I loved the refreshing aspect of dealing with descendants of gods and goddesses. I immediately went on to read the next in the series and I can’t wait to see where the series leads me. Definitely recommended if you’re a fan of M/F urban fantasy.(less)
Since Quinn’s partner died, he’s been living a lonely, sad life. He hasn’t been abl...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
Since Quinn’s partner died, he’s been living a lonely, sad life. He hasn’t been able to get over George’s death in the five years he’s been grieving but when Quinn’s brother, Michael, comes back into his life with his future wife, they inadvertently give Quinn a reason to move on with his life. That reason? Arrow, the man who’s been chasing Michael and Jade. Quinn thought he finally found another person to spend his life with but what will happen once he figures out the real reason Arrow has shown interest in him?
There were a lot of things I liked about this story. I loved how Quinn’s letter was able to make Arrow feel so much towards a complete stranger and I especially loved that it slowly worked its way under Arrow’s skin. More than that, I liked how sweet Quinn and Arrow were together. Instead of jumping into bed right away or being in love at first sight, they take things slow and actually date. It was refreshing in a way and made the conflict and feelings they had in the end all that much more real.
Unfortunately, one of my issues with this story was how one-dimensional the characters felt to me. I tried to connect with them but it was hard because I didn’t feel like I really knew them. By the end, I felt like there were too many questions left unanswered such as what Arrow will be doing now that he’s not in the business of finding people.
All in all, this was a light, sweet read. If I had to describe it further, I’d even call it ‘quiet’ because while there is a little suspense, it’s more of a slow discovery of romance. I enjoyed it and look forward to reading more by this author.(less)
This is an action-packed story about Mac, who works for Supernatural Protection & Invest...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
This is an action-packed story about Mac, who works for Supernatural Protection & Investigations as a seer. Partnered with Ian Byrne, the two track down creatures that go bump in the night causing trouble. When doing an off-the-books night job, they’re just seconds shy of stopping a gruesome paranormal murder. Unfortunately for them, one torn apart human is just the start of the chaos that’s about to unfold.
This was my first book by Ms. Shearin and I must say, I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed it! It reminded me a bit of the movie R.I.P.D. with some of the scenes that took place, mixed with a little Men In Black. The Grendel Affair was filled with suspense involving dragons, werewolves, elves, suicidal Vikings, disgusting ghouls and baby Grendels. I liked the integration of the Grendel creatures and the history behind them. It was interesting to see everything come together and work itself out with just seconds to spare! It was loads of fun, to say the least!
I also enjoyed Mac’s quirky humor and honesty in just how scared and wimpy she is, it was refreshing to read a book about a heroine that didn’t think she had to prove something to everyone else and do things on her own with no help. Mixed with Ian’s stoicism and their bantering, I loved the chemistry between them and the connection that’s slowly blossoming. I have a few small questions still but since this is the start of a series, I think my questions will be answered soon enough in the next book.
All in all, this was a great start to a new series! I loved the characters and all the suspense that kept me on the edge of my seat. I can’t wait to see what comes next for Mac and Ian and hopefully see the connection between them get deeper! And I desperately hope we get more of Rolf! That crazy Viking is just so loveable! Definitely recommended for those who enjoy a good, fun urban fantasy.(less)
When a creature starts mutilating dogs in Dina’s neighborhood, she’s forced to take...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
When a creature starts mutilating dogs in Dina’s neighborhood, she’s forced to take actions into her own hands when the local werewolf refuses to do anything. Unfortunately for her, that same werewolf refuses to let her handle things herself and pretty soon she’s forced to team up with him to find the creatures before they escalate into killing humans. Things only get worse when powerful vampires show up to warn them off. But what happens when these vampires can’t get the job done? In Dina’s attempt to save her neighborhood will she end up losing everything instead?
Oh, I loved this one! I couldn’t help but fall into this world like I fall so easily into the Kate Daniels series. I loved the uniqueness of the idea behind the Inn, which is an entity of its own. The fact that Dina is the Inn Keeper and holds a great amount of power was right up my alley. Mixed with her using her powers on not only Sean, the alpha-strain werewolf, but Arland, the vampire soldier, and anyone else that decided to cause problems on her land made the story that much more appealing. Not to mention, the authors included graphics of each major character within the novel and even though I wished there were more graphics to show some of the scenes, I absolutely loved the pics!
I loved that Dina had no issues with getting her hands dirty and even loved that Sean and Dina started off so badly on the wrong foot. Dina at first, seems very bland but as the story progresses, you see that she has a lot of layers to her and tries to hide her emotions. Sean is very aggressive, powerful and just won’t give up while Arland is forceful and thinks his way is the only way.
The three working together are make a great team and I loved experiencing their planning to eliminate the enemy. Readers should be aware this is a classic first story in a UF series. That means there is only a sliver of romance. The love interest is possibly Sean or it’s possibly Arland but besides one brief kiss, we don’t know which yet. Dina’s love life is still developing and I imagine it’ll be an epic one!
I think my only niggle with this story is the explanation concerning other alien planets and wars around them. While I liked that this world expanded to include an almost sci-fi element, the way it was all described felt clinical and out of place. It seemed odd to me the way it was just dumped into the story.
Overall, I absolutely loved this story. The idea centered around an Inn Keeper and all the power they hold was fascinating to read about. I loved the situations Dina was forced into because of her desire to help. It was a refreshing story and different from the other novels I’ve read by Ilona Andrews. I can’t wait to see where they go with this series and especially can’t wait to see if more graphics will be included in the next stories!(less)
A few months ago, I read a story that not only blew my socks off but made me immedi...moreThis review can be found at The Blogger Girls review site.
A few months ago, I read a story that not only blew my socks off but made me immediately want to read the sequel AND purchase the print books of both stories. In Liam's Wake (see my review here) was a ball of craziness I could not let go. I was nervous the sequel wouldn't live up to it but, to my pleasure, it was so much better...
This is the journey that Johann Andreas IV takes from being a self-conscious, overweight nobody to a person who finds his place in the world and a person to love him. I'm not going to go into details about what happens because, honestly, I wouldn't be able to explain everything that Johann goes through or the shear craziness that is this story (in a good way!). What I will say is that Tanner and Johann go through many things together and apart. They live separate lives but yearn for the same thing. It's about self-discovery and acceptance, love and friendship, right and wrong and how you have to lose things before you realize the importance of what you lost. It's a gripping tale that kept me captivated from beginning to end.
I loved the characters. Johann has so much depth to him that I wanted to save him from himself. He's not a perfect character. He's overweight, selfish, somewhat conceited but all he craves is someone who wants him for him. Tanner is that someone. Where Johann takes, Tanner gives everything he has just to make Johann happy, even at the cost of his own happiness. It's heart-breaking, to be honest, because these two have more of a history than anyone could ever know and no matter what they do, everything seems to conspire against them being together... even the 'needs' they think they each want. When all is said and done, the influence they have on one another not only grows them as people but matures them and cements them into the lives they were meant to live.
My only niggle with this story was that I felt like Johann was very self-centered, to the point it was frustrating to read. Considering how he grew up, I could kind of understand it but I just wish he would have taken into consideration how Tanner was feeling or how hard Tanner was trying to make Johann comfortable. I felt so bad with how Johann treated him at times that I wanted to yell at Johann :(
In the end, I absolutely adored the story even if there were some moments I wanted to smack Johann. The simple fact that Johann grew so much throughout the story, though, leveled out my dislike of his selfish moments. Tanner captured my heart and didn't want to let go, and the numerous twists and turns throughout the book kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time. The world Ms. Forge has managed to create is awe-inspiring and I can't wait to read more about the characters within it!
If you're a science fiction lover like me and enjoy stories that have multiple conflicts, an intricate world and heart-wrenching characters, then you'll enjoy this one as well, so give it a try!(less)
Stratford Dale is not very happy. He’s working his butt off ewriting popular children’s books under the pen name Doctor Chicken but he’s getting paid...moreStratford Dale is not very happy. He’s working his butt off ewriting popular children’s books under the pen name Doctor Chicken but he’s getting paid barely anything for it. On top of that, he has the worst luck in finding a guy to call his own especially when all the guys who are interested only want him for sex. Vinnie Giani changes all that when they meet at a cooking class and Vinnie pulls out his rusty romantic charms and tries to woe Stratford into something of a relationship. Both men are clueless on just what that means but one thing has been made clear… keeping secrets is never good. Will their omissions cause their fledgling relationship to fall apart before it ever actually starts?
Stratford is that cute mix of awkward and geeky. He loves to wear bow ties and has the tendency to be very clumsy at the worst possible moments. He’s straight up adorable and I loved every minute of his awkwardness. Vinnie is the exact opposite in that he’s charming and sexy. I loved that Vinnie loved all of who Stratford is and even goes to great lengths to explore his likes, such as starting to watch Stratford’s favorite show, Doctor Who, just because he knew Stratford loves it.
Seriously, the two together are just all kinds of sweetness. They balance each other out but also have a lot of issues they have to work through. At times, Vinnie seems lost and Stratford is there to guide him through things. At other times, Stratford needs the guidance. The whole story is about them working through their problems and trying at something new. Stratford is insecure, afraid of rejection and hates confrontation but Vinnie does what he can to help Stratford through that. Vinnie has a tendency to try and fix things, which causes them both some problems. The story is a nice mix of exploring their feelings, wants and dreams and trying to walk on eggshells around those issues.
While this was a fun and easy story, I admit one of my biggest problems was the way Stratford could never just say enough is enough. He has major rejection issues not to mention he doesn’t like confrontation so that means he will do anything to avoid anything negative… this means he lets things play out well past when they should, which equates to him getting walked all over. I loved that he was so damaged in this way but it also got on my nerves that he couldn’t stand up for himself. There were also a few scenes where it seemed that Stratford and Vinnie did a character role reversal (Vinnie started acting like Stratford, Stratford started acting like Vinnie, etc.). They weren’t that big a deal for me but the transition into that wasn’t very smooth.
In the end, I really did enjoy it. It’s a pleasant read and while Stratford was frustrating a time or two, I did love Stratford and Vinnie and the tentative way they go about their relationship. The ending was a little abrupt but I still liked where they ended up. If you’ve liked KC Burn’s other books, you’ll no doubt like this one as well :)
Having just finished this, I'm not really sure what to say. I loved the story. Axton is so melancholy and grumpy. He's not exactly the friendliest per...moreHaving just finished this, I'm not really sure what to say. I loved the story. Axton is so melancholy and grumpy. He's not exactly the friendliest person but he's so... real that I just wanted to squeeze him and never let go. Throughout the story, you see what Axton goes through. His repetitive life and how Leander disrupts that, how Axton is trying to cope with Leander always around and the feelings Axton can't seem to get rid of for his gorgeous neighbor.
Leander is, quite honestly, an asshole. He's nice and charming but can be manipulative and mean if he finds amusement in it. He grew on me, even though there were times I didn't like him, and he brought out something in Axton that made Axton want to show his belly. It's cute and sweet and... well, I'm not sure what else to say.
I adored the two together. I just cannot express how much I loved experiencing the two form a friendship. It's a slow-burn type of book but it's only one sided. They flirt occasionally and they banter a lot but their time together is precious and their time apart is heartbreaking. There are funny moments and sad moments, happy moments and heart-stopping moments. It's an adventure if you really let yourself sink into the story and ignore its flaws.
I adored this book, especially Axton, but it still has it's problems. It could have used a lot more editing. There were typos and mistakes throughout the book but mainly there were brief paragraphs interspersed through the book from Leander's POV even though the rest is from Axton's POV. The head hopping is disorienting at first but I got used to it eventually. Beyond that, I'm left with a lot of questions by the end of the book. Where will Axton and Leander go now? Are they in a relationship? Is it a long-distance relationship? Are they monogamous? Most of all, I want to know if Leander is still going to be acquiring girlfriends left and right like he was and how will Axton react to that?
In the end, this was a phenomenal story. It's slow and really gets into Axton's head, his paranoia, his panic and his misery but then you see how Leander makes Axton happy, even though he's angsting over Leander as straight. It's intense at times but I really loved how they built a solid relationship before they got into anything intimate. It gave credence to Leander being gay for Axton. A lovely story and nothing like a normal shifter story. Definitely recommended for those looking for something with character depth and a change from the usual cliched shifter story.
Having said all that, I really hope there's more to come of Axton and Leander. It would be great to get a story from Leander's point of view and to see them in a different setting than the cabins and mountains. I'll be keeping an eye out for more books by Ms. Wayne in hopes my wishes come true!(less)
This was the first book I’ve read by Ms. Bishop and I came across Written in Red when I was looking at the nominees in the Goodreads Choice A...more4.5 stars
This was the first book I’ve read by Ms. Bishop and I came across Written in Red when I was looking at the nominees in the Goodreads Choice Awards 2013, I saw the cover and I thought “Hmmmm, that seems interesting” (yes, I’m a cover whore). So I bought the book, expecting to read a typical paranormal story. What I found instead was something amazingly fascinating and wholly unique.
If I had to classify this story, I’d say it’s urban fantasy but even that doesn’t exactly explain it. Nevertheless, this novel took me on a wild ride set in a gruesome, cruel world where the terra indigene, the Earth Natives, rule the world. These Others only tolerate humans for the technology they’ve managed to create but even then, the relationship between humans and Others is uneasy, filled with fear and sometimes hatred.
The story follows Meg Corbyn, a cassandra sangue, or blood prophet, as she seeks refuge with the Others at Lakeside. Taking a position as a Human Liaison for them, she’s safe from the Controller who is looking for her as long as she stays on the Others land. Unfortunately, Meg has secrets and Simon Wolfgard, the leader of Lakeside Courtyard, knows she’s hiding something and determined to figure out just what that is and why a human such as Meg doesn’t smell like all other humans, like prey.
Beyond the amazing world that was created, the author managed to bring life to just about everything within the story, including the characters. The descriptions surrounding Meg and her role as a blood prophet made me fall in love with who Meg was and broke my heart over what kind of life she’s been forced to endure. I adored the savagery around Simon and his fight to stay in his human skin but mostly I loved how much Meg unintentionally changed Simon and his way of thinking of humans. The chemistry between Simon and Meg is a slow but intense burn. Meg is so innocent that she doesn’t quite understand what is happening between the two while Simon is unwilling to think, and ultimately accept, just what Meg is starting to mean to him and Sam, Simon’s nephew. It’s hard to adequately express just how much I loved this story, ALL the characters and what they end up going through.
The only issue I had with this novel is mostly with a certain character’s POV. Asia Crane is a human looking to find out information about the Others in Lakeside Courtyard. At first, I found her interesting but as the story progressed, her inner monologue grew tiresome and annoying. She fancied herself an actress and a special investigator but her constant mention of a TV show that wasn’t going to happen and her abilities as a SI (special investigator) for that show were very repetitive. I dreaded it when the POV shifted to her because I felt like a good majority of her thoughts were monotonous.
Regardless of that, I found this to be an intriguing and captivating story. The world Ms. Bishop created was just phenomenal where the Others are frightening and deadly creatures who only barely hold onto their humanity and only barely tolerate humans. Meg and Simon were interesting characters and the conflicts Meg inadvertently drags to Lakeside Courtyard were very well done in both conclusion and description. Not to mention the writing pulled me into the story so quickly I stayed up multiple nights until early morning to keep reading. It’s suspenseful at times and gruesome at others. It’s the type of story that touched my heart and even made me tear up a few times and I cannot wait to read the sequel!
In the end, I’m so glad I picked up this book. It’s one I would recommend to anyone who enjoys urban fantasy and paranormal but also who can appreciate the uniqueness around this world and the viciousness that inhabits it.
Angelo is soul bound to his Broodmaster Ardoin Baptiste, which means that whatever Ardoin wants Angel...moreThis review can be found at The Blog of Sid Love.
Angelo is soul bound to his Broodmaster Ardoin Baptiste, which means that whatever Ardoin wants Angelo to do, Angelo must do it whether he wants to or not. Now Ardoin wants Angelo to take out Tallen, someone who’s poaching from Ardoin’s territory. What Angelo thought would be a simple job turns into much more when he learns about Dulce, Tallen’s pet, who’s much more than he seems to be. As the night unravels, Angelo learns the truth of why Ardoin sent Angelo on that mission.
When I read the blurb for this story, I was intrigued. I thought it would be something suspenseful, maybe with a little violence, but ultimately with a romantic subplot. Unfortunately, this was the kind of story that was nothing like that. I’m not going to lie, this was a struggle for me to get through. It had a lot of factors that I don’t generally read because I don’t like them and had I known even some of these from the blurb, I probably wouldn’t have picked this story. Also, I find it semi ironic that the title of the LT3 collection is “Proud to be a Vampire” since Angelo didn’t seem like he was proud of being a half-breed at all.
I won’t go into a lot of details about it because I think one’s feelings towards this story will be based on their owns tastes. I will say that this book doesn’t have any romance, not even as a subplot (although some might disagree with my opinion of that). To make it worse, I didn’t quite understand the book at all. I couldn’t get a read on Angelo, who he was, his true feelings, what he is because he would say one thing and then his actions would totally contradict what he’d say, such as his ‘hatred’ for Ardoin and his claims that Ardoin ‘rapes’ him yet when he was with Ardoin, he was like a cat in heat. Actually, when Angelo was with anyone he was like a cat in heat, which I think that makes him half incubus? I’m not quite sure, to be honest. There was no one around off limits to Angelo sexually and I think that was one of the reasons I couldn’t connect with him because he was such a slut and because there was just too much sex for me.
This one had a lot of potential. The world was intriguing but I think there was too much time spent on who Angelo was fucking and not enough time spent on developing the characters and the world. There’s also the fact that this story doesn’t really go anywhere. I had at least expected something to change by the end but where Angelo and Ardoin are in the beginning (with Angelo hating Ardoin with a passion) is exactly where they are in the end. So, Angelo goes through all these situations, having to hunt, kill and fuck people but yet, by the end, nothing changes. This just wasn’t my type of story. I wanted to enjoy it but it had too many elements that I don’t like reading about and a world that wasn’t explained enough to hold my attention. With that said, I think readers should consider reading it anyway. My tastes may be different from others and I don’t want a reader to miss out on a book that they could potentially love even if I did not like it.(less)
Shadow is the elusive man that saved Ben’s life twice in Alrik and Seger is one of the C-7 shifters t...moreThis review can be found at The Blog of Sid Love.
Shadow is the elusive man that saved Ben’s life twice in Alrik and Seger is one of the C-7 shifters that are trying to find him again. They think Shadow might be another C-7 but they aren’t sure. When Shadow shows up unannounced and sick at Ben’s work, he causes quite a stir. They can’t figure out what’s wrong with him but they know one thing, he’s definitely not a C-7. Nero, Seger’s boss and the leader of the C-7 shifters, is instantly suspicious of Shadow because of his immense power and the questions he can’t seem to answer. Shadow is there to help but he doesn’t know exactly who he’s supposed to help, why he’s supposed to help or even for what he’s helping against. All he knows is that he’s pulled to Ben and the rest of the C-7. When Shadow shows up, Seger is beyond relieved since he’s been searching for him for a while. The two have quite a connection but Shadow refuses to open his heart to Seger. He’s lived a much longer life than Seger and has too many broken hearts to count but Seger won’t give up. Will they be able to figure out just who and what Shadow is? And will Shadow’s efforts to keep his heart from Seger actually work?
I enjoyed this story better than the first one. For one, there is much less smut than in Alrik but also because I think Seger and Shadow had more of an emotional connection than Alrik and Ben were able to develop. For Seger and Shadow, their story revolved more around trying to figure out why Shadow is there. He doesn’t know what he is but knows that something has driven him to seek out Ben again and to ultimately help the C-7 shifters in anyway he can. While there’s general distrust from Seger’s boss towards Shadow, it’s clear that Shadow is a kind hearted man that is just trying to do what he was put on Earth to do…. whatever that may be. I loved Shadow and how mysterious he was. I liked that he had effects of amnesia without actually having it. It made for an interesting read. Seger was probably my favorite, though. I didn’t much like him in the previous story but in this one he’s a sweet, caring and gentle guy. It made me smile whenever he stuck up for Shadow but more than that, I liked that he wasn’t consumed with lust like Alrik was. Granted, he still lusted after Shadow but it wasn’t all-consuming. It was subtle but intense and the emotional relationship they built out-shined that, in my eyes.
As I said, the story revolves around finding out who and what Shadow is, why he’s there and also on how that affects the C-7 shifters. You get deeper into the world that Ms. Lynne has created and you slowly start to see what direction she’s going in and what’s in store for all shifters. I like the slow unravel of answers that you experience throughout both books. This is the type of series that you would have to read in order just so you aren’t confused. More than that, though, I liked how it seems to be broadening into the general public and all shifters. It’s becoming more and more interesting with each book and I can’t wait to experience the rest of it.
As with Alrik, this is a short story. Possibly too short, in my opinion, for the conflicts that are starting to develop, but I like it all the same. The length is definitely an issue because it hinders the characters and the plot from getting too deep, which was one of my problems. Unfortunately, another one was the cliff-hanger. Not so much the fact that I have to wait to continue reading the series but the fact that it ends in the middle of a conversation. It felt too abrupt and awkward compared to the rest of the book.
Overall, the series is getting better. As it progresses, the characters get more likeable and the plot thickens as you learn more and more about the world and what is happening. I found it an enjoyable read and I loved the characters, as well as, the journey that Seger and Shadow go on to get where they are. I desperately wished it had been longer because I would have liked to read more about them but, as it is, it was a good read. For those looking for something slightly sweet, quick and easy, this is the series for you… especially if you like unique shifters ;) (less)
This is the story of Dr. Ben Cook, who has a fascination with Mexican Grey wolves and saving...moreThis review can be found at The Blog of Sid Love.
This is the story of Dr. Ben Cook, who has a fascination with Mexican Grey wolves and saving them from extinction, and Alrik, the bodyguard Ben’s sister hires to keep Ben from getting shot again while gathering data of the few known Mexican Grey wolf packs in America. Attraction is instant when the two meet but Ben is determined to get the information he needs to help the wolves, even if they don’t want his help. While Alrik thought it’d be an easy job to shadow Ben, neither of them count on their attraction becoming physical nor do they expect to find shifters merging with natural wolves. Unfortunately, Ben’s desire to help the wolves has caused Ben and Alrik to stumble upon an issue the wolves have been having for some time. Now they’re trying to help but just how wanted is their assistance? And who keeps saving Ben from sticky situations? But, more importantly, does the sudden lust between Ben and Alrik mean something more and is it even wanted?
One of my guilty pleasures is shifters. I can’t get enough of them, no matter how many of them I read. With this one, I liked that the shifter was of a different nature. Alrik is considered a chameleon shifter, part of the C-7 shifters, named because there is only seven of them in the world. They can change into any animal, no matter how small or how large. Alrik being part of the C-7 and what that all means, plays a big role in this book, in my opinion. I found all of that fascinating because I love seeing different takes on shifters and mixed with the fact that the C-7 are so different but so similar was very interesting for me.
As characters, Alrik is very forceful, demanding and surprisingly possessive considering he’s very adamant what is going on between him and Ben is ‘nothing’. It’s cute how he denies what is right in front of him but also sad (this is also a guilty pleasure of mine). Ben, on the other hand, I absolutely adored. He’s such a sweetheart and I loved that he could be stubborn when he wanted to be but also knew when putting up a fight would be useless. The two together are cute and indulge in their lust quite often. Their relationship isn’t as in depth as I would have liked (since the story is so short) but I liked what they went through and had a lot of fun reading it.
While I loved the world Ms. Lynne created and the characters, I had a few issues. My main issue was how much sex there was. It was too much for my tastes and it made me feel, in the end, that their relationship was more of a physical one than an emotional one. Besides that, I was confused in the beginning regarding the world. It feels like you’re thrust into this unknown society and expected to understand it already. So, it took a little time to get acquainted with the fact that shifters were common knowledge and lived among humans openly. Over the course of the book, the world becomes clearer but those first few pages were somewhat disorientating.
All in all, I enjoyed this one a lot. I love Ms. Lynne’s writing and I adored the world she created. This series seems to be all short stories so far (something that saddens me greatly!), they’re quick reads but I loved the characters and found the world fascinating. I can’t wait to see the direction this series goes in but I hope the other books are longer than this one!! Definitely recommended for those looking for something short, easy and fun.(less)
This is the story of Max, who’s built a content life for himself as a good police officer. When he re...moreThis review can be found at The Blog of Sid Love.
This is the story of Max, who’s built a content life for himself as a good police officer. When he realizes that Jamie, his high school best friend’s brother, has been arrested for possible prostitution, he simple can’t believe it. With permission from his captain, Jamie is released into Max’s custody for the night. One night is all it takes for Max’s old feelings about Jamie to come to the surface. But Jamie is no longer the sweet, innocent kid he used to be. Now, he’s jaded, vulnerable and needs Max more than ever. When Max finally puts aside his guilt and takes what Jamie is offering, will their relationship last through all the troubles that seem to keep finding them?
This was a very sweet story. One of my favorite themes is brother’s best friend or best friend’s brother. I can’t help but love the fact that the best friend always seems to feel guilty for desiring the brother. This is no different in that Max has a bunch of guilt, thinking that his desires for Jamie when they were kids was wrong. While he’s not in denial about his sexuality, he still thinks wanting Jamie isn’t right. Regardless, I liked both characters. Max is a sweetheart and he just wants to take care of Jamie. Jamie is a spitfire but so vulnerable I just wanted to hug him tight. They’re both emotional and yearn for each other. They’re perfect together but they have a lot of things they need to overcome before they can have a good relationship.
That’s essentially what this story is about. Max gets reacquainted with Jamie and while they don’t jump into a relationship because of Max’s misguided opinion that Jamie deserves better, they do form a friendship that becomes more. When things start to get intimate between them, it’s one problem after another such as Jamie’s hot headed brother, Mason, Jamie’s past, and something unexpected that’s really heartbreaking.
They’re good conflicts but I think the biggest problem with this book is the length and the fact that there really isn’t any depth to the story. We get multiple issues but they don’t delve below the surface so nothing is explored too deeply. They’re not elaborated on at all so that Max will narrate them but then the resolution to them is either glossed over or ignored to the point that I didn’t actually feel the connection between Jamie and Max, in any way. I had a few other issues, though, such as the fact that Jamie felt more like a ‘buddy’ to Max (his words) than someone he wanted to be intimate with and the fact that a lot of this story is told instead of shown.
All in all, this was a cute, very easy story to read. I enjoyed it because it did make me smile and I did like where the characters ended up overall. With a little more description and meat to the book, this one could have been very good. As it was, I’d recommend it to those looking for something quick, easy and cute that doesn’t require much concentration.(less)
Niall Ahern is just existing. After the death of his partner, he moved his life to an island...moreThis review can be found at The Blog of Sid Love.
Niall Ahern is just existing. After the death of his partner, he moved his life to an island they were supposed to eventually move to. Since then, he’s been trying to fulfill the dreams he had with his once partner, Nolan. It’s been four years and he still hasn’t been able to move on… until Ethan Bettencourt arrives. Ethan’s looking to buy a house on Tortola and hired Niall to show him homes. The attraction is instant but not only is Niall unwilling to sleep with a client but Ethan is giving off mixed signals. When a hurricane blows through the Caribbean, it brings the two closer together but when it’s over Ethan leaves without a goodbye. Hurt and depressed, Niall goes on with his life but he can’t seem to let Ethan go. When Niall goes to the States to see his sister-in-law, that gives him the perfect opportunity to find out why Ethan left in the first place. Was there something real between them or did Niall imagine the feelings he thought Ethan had for him?
Bru Baker is quickly turning into a favorite author of mine. There’s just something about her writing that draws me in with each story I read by her. I loved the flow of this story. There’s a few hiccups and readers might get annoyed with “the big misunderstanding” (although it wasn’t huge, IMO) but it worked for these two because of the past they unknowingly share. It explores the connection Niall and Ethan develop and the feelings they can’t get rid of but also shows them after they work things out from “The Big M”… at least with a little help from two great female secondary characters, Stephanie and Clare.
This story is solely from Niall’s POV so you get to know Niall pretty well. My heart ached for him. He’s still grieving for Nolan but he has an underlining of guilt he can’t seem to get rid of (and not for why you’re thinking either!). I just wanted to hug him and keep him safe. He’s sweet and kind but emotionally, he’s bruised. Ethan is different in that he loves his life. He’s confident, blunt, and a thrill seeker. The two have more in common then they originally think and I absolutely adored the connection they create. It’s seems a little fast at times but it’s sort of sweet and intense. I couldn’t help but love it and THEM!
I think my only issue was that the ending left me with a lot of questions. The boys deserve their happiness but now I’m left wondering where they go from here. Will Niall leave Tortola for Seattle? What about his business? His job? What will he do now? Will they have a long-distance relationship? Or will they move to Tortola? There are just so many questions I have that I really wish it had been longer so they could be answered!
In the end, I adored this story. Niall has a lot of depth to him as does Ethan, although Ethan is still somewhat mysterious. I liked the conflicts they go through and how they were handled but I found the writing amazing. Ms. Baker knows how to spin a tale that I’ll enjoy and I can’t wait to read more from her.(less)
I’m going to shamelessly say that covers are the first thing that draw me in so when I saw t...moreThis review can be found at The Blog of Sid Love.
I’m going to shamelessly say that covers are the first thing that draw me in so when I saw this one, I was intrigued. Then I found out that it was not only fantasy but had shifters and I just knew that I had to read it… and I’m very glad I did.
Jerath is eagerly awaiting going through The Choosing, where he can finally find out the nature of his animal. Unfortunately, he can’t do that until his fangs come in, which don’t seem to be in any hurry to grow. One day Jerath and his friend Serim are catching fish as part of their chores only to realize on the way back to their village that raiders have taken over the village and captured some of their people to sell as slaves. Scared for their lives and their captured loved ones, they try to seek help with a southern village, Chastil. The journey to Chastil is long and tiring but comes with a few unexpected surprises. Jerath thought he’d never find a mate but when he meets Meren, one of the warriors from Chastil, that just might change his whole future. The real question, however, is whether Meren and his people can help Jerath free his fellow shifters and whether they’ll both survive it to be able to see where their connection leaves them?
I must say, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy this story as much as I did. I found Jerath amusing. He’s fierce and possessive but sweet and innocent. It was endearing to see him flustered one moment but then aggressive the next. Meren was the opposite in that he was bold and confident but then easily melted whenever Jerath decided to take the reins. I adored these two and the connection that they make. It’s sweet but intense, loving and hot. I wished there had been more of them because while I feel like I know them, I don’t feel like I know them as well as I could.
The characters are definitely a great addition to this book, however, I think the main appeal was the world the author created. It’s complex but easy to understand. I loved that shifters were freely known about and even that there were whole communities dedicated to them. I liked that the women were born knowing their shifter animal while the men had to wait until they completed The Choosing to know theirs. It added mystery and conflict to the story and made it interesting seeing how the rituals were done. I also liked the fact that it wasn’t just ‘expected’ that they were going to eventually shift but there was always that fear for Jerath that it might not happen.
I had a few niggles with this story. Mostly, I felt like sometimes Serim (Jerath’s female friend) outshined not only Jerath and Meren but the relationship they were building. At times, I felt like the bond between Serim and Jerath was stronger than the one between Meren and Jerath. (This is actually even more prominent when you look at the cover and see the black panther (Serim’s shifter form), which leaves me wondering why is there a black panther on the cover? I would think there would be a jaguar instead.) Personally, that lessened my enjoyment at times because I wanted to see more of the bond between Jerath and Meren not be reminded of the connection between Serim and Jerath. Beyond that, there are a few inconsistencies but I would have loved to see more of Meren’s culture since it seems so different, yet similar, to Jerath’s culture.
Readers should be warned, however, that there is m/f sex in this story. While necessary to the development of the story arc and of Jerath, I know some readers would appreciate being told of this. I’m not all that fond of girly bits in my stories and while I didn’t exactly like this part, I did think it needed to happen so I was fine with it overall.
All in all, even with my issues, I absolutely adored this one. It’s refreshing in a way, unique in others in how different it is from other shifter stories. Add to that, the world is quite fascinating and engaging and the bond that Jerath and Meren ultimately develop was nice to see. I’m hoping Ms. Jacobs decides to write more stories in this world because I’d love to explore it further, especially if that means seeing more of Meren’s culture and rituals.
Definitely recommended for those looking for a different kind of shifter story with an interesting journey and a good HEA.(less)
Eight years ago, Liam was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Thrust into a world that’s c...moreThis review can be found at The Blog of Sid Love.
Eight years ago, Liam was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Thrust into a world that’s considered ‘Topside’, life as he knew it was just about over. His only saving grace is Riley, the man who was sucked into the mysterious place with him. Unfortunately for them, they had to endure one hellish situation after another to survive. Now Liam’s been in the ‘Colony’, a more civilized place than Topside, for five years but Riley’s been in a coma for just as long. Liam’s world is slowly falling apart but what will happen when Riley finally wakes up? Will Liam’s natural affinity to causing problems put them in more trouble then the two can handle?
I just want to say for the record that this book is really crazy! There are so many layers to not only the world and the characters but everything that Liam and Riley have to endure. They each had their own problems and now have the emotional and physical scars to prove it but this book is one that is constantly moving forward. When something happens, it doesn’t just resolve itself in a matter of moments but propels the story into another situation and another to the point that they’re all interwoven and almost all can be resolved in a specifc way… by Liam registering with the Eletes.
To be honest, I don’t feel comfortable trying to explain this story because it would be hard to recreate all that in so many words. What I will say is that this book definitely took me for a ride. Whenever I thought something was going good, Liam would inadvertently cause another problem or part of Riley’s mysteriousness would start to unravel and we’d learn something new about the characters and how much more complicated things could get.
About the characters, I absolutely adored them. Liam is so broken, complicated and almost naive. He’s… well, he’s a hot mess. He just wants to break Riley and him free of the Colony and go back to New York but he can’t do that and each time he’s denied his way of going home, he starts to unravel more and more, losing his mind, becoming anxious and panicky. He has these built in receptors that are extremely dangerous and could kill him if he gets too worked up, which he gets close to doing multiple times. He always thinks he’s found a way to get out of the ‘prison’ he’s in but each time it falls through and he slowly loses hope to the point that he becomes suicidal in his mission to get them back to New York.
Riley is like Liam’s rock but, at the same time, their situation is unique. Riley is even more complicated than Liam because, as the story progresses, you learn over and over how Riley is different from anyone else alive but not exactly how he got that way. It’s amazing and intriguing to see it all play out. Even more so because of the connection between Liam and Riley. Which, while I wouldn’t exactly consider it a sexual one at first, it is definitely an emotional one. They’re linked together through their shared experiences and have created a bond that is hard to break completely.
I had a few issues with the story, though. My main one is that I was confused a lot. The transitions between one problem and the next weren’t very smooth so I was always left scratching my head wondering how Liam or Riley ended up where they did, almost like there were scenes missing between one chapter break and the start of another. It was hard to follow when mixed with Riley’s disadvantage of losing his memories or with Liam’s panic attacks that cause them to black out.
Another thing I had trouble with was understanding Liam and Riley’s relationship because sometimes they would be in love and other times it was almost like they hated each other or were disgusted with one another. I’m not sure if it was meant towards one another or at something else that was keeping them apart but it made me semi uncomfortable… but then they’d confess their love and their emotional connection would be so prominent that I was able to overlook it sometimes. Beyond that, I must admit that I still have a ton of questions about the world and Riley and Liam’s relationship. What is going to happen to Riley? What exactly is Riley? How did he get that way? What is his place in the Colony? Why is Riley still so apprehensive about being touched during intimacy? There’s just so many questions revolving around Riley that I’m burning to know the answers of… but then I also want to know more about Liam and these mysterious people still trying to kill him. Or how the Elete will change him? What will the Elete do to him now? What about Norman? Or Vlad? Omg, there’s just so many questions that I want to know NOW!
Phew! In the end, this was an amazing story. It’s been a while since I’ve been so intrigued with a book that, even though it was a crazy story, I just couldn’t put it down. I was so invested in this one and how Liam and Riley would make things work or how Liam would get out of his next fuck up that I didn’t even notice I was gobbling up huge chunks of the story at a time. I didn’t expect that this would become such a complex book but I’m so glad I read it. I can’t wait to read more in this series and in this world. It’s such a fascinating world with emotionally damaged and fragile characters. I’d definitely recommend it to anyone looking for something different that’ll grab you by the balls and not let go… so to speak. LOL. I loved the book so much I even bought the paperback! :D (less)