Are you team Ethan, team Morgan or team Catcher? I’ve come across this question many times while perusing reading group discussions. I never really un...moreAre you team Ethan, team Morgan or team Catcher? I’ve come across this question many times while perusing reading group discussions. I never really understood the question’s implications because I had not read the ‘Chicagoland Vampires’ series by Chloe Neill. But just from that query alone, I came to the conclusion that this Merit chick seemed to be a little busy with a threesome of boys bidding for her attention. After finally having read the first book in the series, I now understand that my assumption about Merit and her extra-curricular activities was wrong. And I totally get why there is so much debate about the men in this series.
“Some Girls Bite” is a wonderful start to Chloe’s supernatural series. Although the series focuses on the recently outed vampire population of Chicago, you still meet some shifters and sorcerers. The story is told from Merit’s point of view (no last name since, unless you are a Master, vampires give up their last name upon their turning). Merit is a wonderful character. She’s smart, witty and sassy. Ethan, her Master vampire, is captivating. He’s over 400 years old, and it shows in his mannerisms. You really want to like him, but then he says something to Merit that makes you smack your forehead with the heel of your hand – and makes you want to smack Ethan’s forehead the same way, only harder. And instead of using the heel of your hand, you want to use a rolling pin (because everyone has one of those handy while they’re reading, right?!…). There is no denying the heat brewing between Merit and Ethan! Their chemistry is undeniable, even when you think there might just be another vampire who is better suited for her.
Enter the supporting cast. The secondary characters in this series are superb! Morgan (the aforementioned vampire) is yummy and funny. Catcher (a sorcerer) is just delicious. Jeff (a shifter) is a hoot. And Mallory (Merit’s roommate, best friend and newly discovered sorceress) is awesome. Her interactions with Merit and their dialogue together is so well written, you feel as though you’ve grown up with these two. Mallory’s humor is infectious and her relationship with Catcher is just right – they make a fantastic couple.
The story is strong, the world building is very smooth and not at all cumbersome and the ending leaves you open to endless possibilities. I now know and completely understand why so many of my bloggy friends are so invested in this series.
Now, to answer the question of whose ‘team’ I’m on… Firstly, after asking a few people I now understand that the teams do not consist of who you think Merit should end up with but of whom you think is the yummiest male character in the series. After reading “Some Girls Bite”, I’ll tell you this: Morgan is great, Ethan is intriguing, but it’s Catcher that drew me in the most. He is funny, sexy and yummy. So it looks like I’m on team Catcher…for now. I’ll re-evaluate after I finish “Friday Night Bites”, the second book in the ‘Chicagoland Vampires’ series.(less)
*Sigh* Ethan… *Sigh* Morgan… *Giggle* Catcher… (But I’ll get to all that in a minute)
In “Friday Night Bites”, the second installment in Chloe Neill’s...more*Sigh* Ethan… *Sigh* Morgan… *Giggle* Catcher… (But I’ll get to all that in a minute)
In “Friday Night Bites”, the second installment in Chloe Neill’s ‘Chicagoland Vampires’ series, Merit has a problem. Okay so she has a few, but the one I think everyone who reads this book pays the most attention to is the problem she has with the men. Catcher, you watch because he’s funny and his relationship with Mallory makes you swoon and laugh out loud simultaneously. Morgan, you watch because Merit has been tricked into dating him and you want to know if he can win her heart. Ethan, you watch because it’s hard not to and because the chemistry between he and Merit is impossible to ignore. By the end of this book, I was surprised by how my opinion of these three men had changed since finishing the first book. I still really like Catcher, but my feelings towards Morgan and Ethan were swaying as much and as often as those air-filled balloon guys on the side of the road showing you exactly where the ‘super big sale’ is.
Merit is quite tormented in this book. She still wants to be ‘pre-vampire’ Merit, but she feels duty-bound to her new Master Ethan and to her House. When asked to re-visit her somewhat estranged family and friends, she begrudgingly accepts – to help her House. She agrees to do many things ‘to help her House’. She is feeling a little used. On top of feeling a little manipulated, Merit also feels a little broken throughout this book. And when she finally lets someone know how she has been feeling, you really feel the weight lift off, not just her shoulders, but yours as well. Merit is very likable. You really want her to be happy and you want her to excel in everything she undertakes. Basically, you want her to kick butt.
I felt frustrated towards Ethan often in this book. But as I read on, I warmed up to him. I think there may be a heart somewhere in there. With Morgan, I felt drawn to him and sympathized with him. Then umm…not so much. Apparently, be it vampire or human, all men have the ability to become babies when they don’t quite get their way. Geez… Unfortunately, (not wanting to give too much away, but be warned, I’m giving a little away…) Mallory and Merit have a little falling out. Okay, it’s a little more than a little one. But they will work things out, right? C’mon, they just have too!!! I heart Mallory!
I like how “Friday Night Bites” plays out. At the end of it all, I think things are how they should be…and headed to where I hope they will go. I’ll just have to read on to “Twice Bitten”, the next book in the series, to see if I am right in my assessment.
As for the teams, Team Morgan is now at the bottom, Team Ethan is creeping up, but Team Catcher is still on top!(less)
“My name is Gin, and I kill people.” That’s the opening line to this book. When I read it, I thought “Whoa, this going to be good.” The first chapter i...more“My name is Gin, and I kill people.” That’s the opening line to this book. When I read it, I thought “Whoa, this going to be good.” The first chapter is very good. But for some unexplained reason, it kind of fizzled out for me after that. It’s not that it was slow going or lacking action. You have an assassin who gets double crossed and who is now out for revenge – all the elements for a thrilling story. And I really like the idea of there being elemental magicians – it’s a cool concept. But as I kept reading, I kept saying to myself: Okay, we get it. You’re an assassin, a really good one, you’re pissed and you want revenge. Long, drawn out, painful revenge. Then, about half way through, Gin and Finn team up with detective Donovan Caine. That’s when the story picked up for me. The romantic chemistry between Gin and Donovan is well done. The brotherly chemistry between Gin and Finn is brilliant. The story got exciting as the plot unraveled. The cliff-hanger at the end is not enough to make you want to bang your head up against a wall, but it is enough to make me want to pick up the next book in the series. (That’s my kind of cliff-hanger.)
Overall, I’m glad I kept reading. I eventually found myself engrossed in the story and hoping all would end well for the heroes and heroine. Do I see myself wanting to pick it up again someday? Likely not. But I very much liked how it ended. That alone made me curious about “Web of Lies”, the next book in the series. In fact, I’m reading it now and I’ll let you know soon if that one is even better for me.
I’m still to this day not sure why, but when I first started reading romance novels I was quite shy and embarrassed about it. The only person who knew...moreI’m still to this day not sure why, but when I first started reading romance novels I was quite shy and embarrassed about it. The only person who knew that I read ‘such books’ was my husband. I was worried about what people would think! (Silly, I know) To feel a little better about it, I would tell myself that reading paranormal romance books was very different than reading historical romance books. Just look at the covers and how much cooler the paranormal jackets are! lol I even made a pact with myself to try to make me feel better: I promised myself that I would never read a book that had the words Highland or Highlander in the title nor would I ever read a book with a picture of a man in a Kilt on the cover. For some reason, I felt that by abiding by those two rules I would not lump myself in with ‘those crazy women’ who read ‘those kinds of books’.
Well, my silly vow went right out the window lately and I officially became a ‘crazy woman’ because I picked up “Beyond the Highland Mist” by Karen Marie Moning. I LOVE Ms. Moning’s ‘Fever’ series. I have heard that a few of the characters from this, her ‘Highlander’ series, cross over into her ‘Fever’ series. I wanted to see if I could catch them and if maybe there were any hints as to what the hell Barrons is! (I know I won’t because by now someone would have, but still a girl can hope) So that is why I decided to bend my ‘rules’ and pluck the book from my book closet.
Not only is “Beyond the Highland Mist” my first ever book with the word ‘Highland’ in the title and my first ever book with a muscled to perfection dude in a kilt on its cover, it is also my first time travel based book. I must admit that I thought it a bit strange how easily our heroine adapted to being whisked from the 1990’s to the 1500’s. She barely freaks out! I know I would be freaking out, even if I was being smacked around a little. There would be me, freaking out! Adrienne was a fine character. She was well written and I did like her, I just didn’t fall in love with her. Her aversion to falling for beautiful men made me scratch my head sometimes. Okay, so you fell for ONE pretty asshat and now you know they are all pretty asshats!? Get over it! Judge a book by its cover why don’t we!? Now Hawk (he’s called the Hawk, but that’s just weird, so I’m simply calling him Hawk) is a better character in comparison, but his jealousy gets a bit ‘been there, done that’ after a while. He’s a pretty character though, so drooling does ensue while reading this book. I really did enjoy the banter between Adrienne and Hawk. That was cute. Although I thought the assassination sub-plot was rather useless, I did take pleasure in the Lydia and Travis story line. Very sweet.
Overall, I found this simply an interesting read. I don’t believe I will read it again though. But we did meet Grimm in this book and he peaked my interest enough to want to read the next book in the series (which is Grimm’s story). And yes, “To Tame a Highland Warrior” is yet another book with a well-built bloke in a kilt on the cover.
I seem to have a thing for tortured heroes... I’m sure that is one of the main reasons I’m more drawn to Grimm than I was to the Hawk. I love that Gri...moreI seem to have a thing for tortured heroes... I’m sure that is one of the main reasons I’m more drawn to Grimm than I was to the Hawk. I love that Grimm is this lost little soul in a big burly man’s body. I really love that he can only have one true mate his entire life. But I’m getting ahead of myself...
“To Tame a Highland Warrior” by Karen Marie Moning is the second book in her ‘Highlander’ series. Although I liked the first book, I really liked this second one. For me, it came down to the characters. I liked Grimm a lot in “Beyond a Highland Mist”, and he did not disappoint in his book. Confused and riddled with guilt, he loves Jillian but can’t bring himself to take her. Jillian has plans of her own for Grimm. She is a spunky and adorable lass. I really enjoyed reading her. And she and Grimm are great together too!
I still haven’t decided whether or not I’m going to continue with the series. I really didn’t like Adam Black in the first book, and the rest of the series focuses on him a lot – not to mention that the 6th book is All about him! When I started reading books, I would buy an entire series all at once assuming that I would enjoy it. I don’t do that anymore because I noticed it’s a little bit of a waste of money if you don’t especially like the first couple of books...lol (I’d feel guilty that I have them and don’t read them, so I suck it up and read them anyways. Then I’d notice that I’m not in such a good mood when I’m reading something I really don’t want to be reading...hmm, interesting.) That means I do have all the other ‘Highlander’ books in my book closet. *sigh* I won’t throw them away or anything. They’ll simply lie in wait on the top shelf behind other books in case I ever change my mind about them. As for my quest to discover which 'Highlander' characters cross-over into the ‘Fever’ series... I’ll just ask you guys!(less)
This is a feel good, cute and funny story! Wonderful characters (Carter made me laugh out loud many times) with not too much drama. Very sweet book an...moreThis is a feel good, cute and funny story! Wonderful characters (Carter made me laugh out loud many times) with not too much drama. Very sweet book and highly recommended.(less)
I just loved this book. Loved it. (Just thought I would get that out of the way)
January of this year was a turning point for me and my reading habits....moreI just loved this book. Loved it. (Just thought I would get that out of the way)
January of this year was a turning point for me and my reading habits. That was when, after reading many positive reviews about a particular contemporary romance book, I decided to pick it up and give it a try. I must say that I was taken aback by how much I enjoyed the genre. Now, I pick up a couple contemporary titles a month. I tend to research books before purchasing them. That way I (hopefully) won’t waste my time and money. While researching on Goodreads, I came across the list ‘Best Ever Contemporary Romance Books’. I read the book descriptions for the top 25 books and picked up the ones I thought I might enjoy. At #20 sat “Smooth Talking Stranger”. And that is how I came across this book.
Lisa Kleypas is primarily a historical romance writer. And since I don’t read many historical romance books, I had not had the pleasure of reading her before now. “Smooth Talking Stranger” is the third book in her contemporary ‘Travis’’ series. You absolutely do not have to read the other two books to enjoy this one. I haven’t and not once while reading this installment did I feel befuddled. I believe the book is so well done, it comes across as a single title. Now let’s talk about why I just loved this book. Loved it.
The plot is rich. Ella’s character is ‘real’ and dealing well with a crappy childhood, an insane mother and a huge surprise! I liked how she dealt with her hardships. Not too far fetched. (Even though you are reading a fictional story, you still want the characters’ essence to be realistic, or you’ll never feel a bond with them.) Ella is wonderful. The emotions in this book are lush. From the very beginning you feel for the people involved and you root for them all the way through! By the way, get a box of Kleenex ready for the last 75 pages or so – you are going to need them. Even though you KNOW what is going to happen from the very beginning of this book, and you KNOW everything will work out the way it’s supposed to (it is, after all, a romance novel with a guaranteed HEA) you will still ball like a baby! If you are a mother, I believe you will get the most out of this story. It is really good at pulling those heart strings that seem to activate only the moment you deliver a baby. (I don’t mean you won’t get anything out of it if you don’t have kids, I mean you’ll get a whole other level from it if you do) Now let’s talk about the last reason I just loved this book. Loved it.
Two words. Jack Travis. *feeling faint at the near mention of his name* I can’t tell you exactly what the reason is, but boy oh boy do you fall in love quickly and deeply with this guy! He is yummy with a capital YUM! He’s sweet and rugged and smart and strong and yummy yum yum. Oh, and he is described as having a hairy chest. (Don’t worry girls, I already told Mandi she has to read this book for that very reason) I immediately added Jack to my list of favorite characters situated on my updated ‘favorites’ page (and I added the book to my favorite books list, and I’m going to start tracking down Lisa Kleypas for her signature…) He’s been hurt, but he’s not damaged. He’s rough and masculine, but he can rock a suit and tie…um, what was I saying. Oh yeah. Jack. And to see him interact with the baby… *sigh*
I strongly recommend this book. I really believe it has something for everyone. Except Jack. He’s mine.(less)
This book has been sitting in my book closet for well over a year. Yes, I’m a little embarrassed to admit that. I’m a little embarrassed that I’ve had...moreThis book has been sitting in my book closet for well over a year. Yes, I’m a little embarrassed to admit that. I’m a little embarrassed that I’ve had this great story set in a fascinating world told by a capable writer stored right next to where I sleep and never made a move to bring it out. I don’t even remember buying it. Was it online or in-store? No idea. But I know it was pre-blog hopping because not many of my bloggy friends have read this. I must have read really good things about it. I must have checked on the Romantic Times Magazine website and seen that it received 4 1/2 stars. Those are usually the reasons I would have bought a new book back in the day. But last week, I opened my book closet and this book shouted at me. It said ‘What the hell, you!” (because really, you can’t expect a book to know your name) “I’ve been in here for a hell of a long time and you suck. Pick me up, read me, show me some love!” And that’s exactly what I did.
“Magic to the Bone” by Devon Monk is book one in her Allie Beckstrom series. About 30 years ago, it was discovered that magic was real and that people could actually channel it and use it. Of course, not all magic is used for good or used as it should. Enter Allie, a Hound. A Hound’s job is to use magic to discover the origin of a spell. Every magic user has their own signature. Hounds unravel a spell to find the signature in order to find out who is responsible for a spell. The downside to magic is that it costs something to use. It causes pain to the magic user. Not right away, but soon after use. Allie prefers trying to steer the pain and have it turn to a multi-day migraine headache, but sometimes when she uses too much magic, she loses some of her memory. She carries around a little note book with all the information she would need and any events she would want to know about documented in it. Memory loss is not something Allie too happy about, but she loves her job too much and she is just too good at it to let it go.
Allie is called in to Hound a hit on a little boy. This leads her to meet with her estranged father which leads to all sorts of happenings. I really enjoy how you really don’t know what is going on or which direction the story is headed. You have an inkling as to who might be involved, but not the why or not even if you are right until the last 50 pages or so. Then you’re just like, whoa.
The story is told from Allie’s point of view, but there are parts of the story that are told from Cody’s point of view. You’re not sure who Cody is. Is he a boy or a man, sick or well? All you know is that he is being held captive and used for his magical ability to forge magic signatures. A really interesting twist to the story telling that I enjoyed.
Let’s talk characters. Allie is a strong woman who wants to isolate herself from her successful father’s dealings. She is magically very powerful. She is kick ass but she is also vulnerable and human. I am very happy I like her since this is the Allie Beckstrom series. It would kind of suck if I didn’t like the main heroine! ;) Zayvion is a mystery. You never fully find out who he is, what he is, why he is there or how he is truly involved. He is very secretive. He is also very protective of Allie and saves her life on numerous occasions. There is this mysterious air about him that makes you want to follow him anywhere to learn more about him. I am also happy to see that he is a recurring character in this series, because I really want to know the who, what, why and how! Allie’s best friend, Nola is a wonderful woman. Almost more of a motherly figure. She is a calming source for Allie, and boy does Allie need it. I wanted to give you big hugs all the time, she’s that sweet.
Overall, I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. I find that always sounds bad when you word it that w — it sounds as though you read a book with very low expectations but it turned out to be kick ass. I just really don’t know why I waited so long to read this. I won’t give any detail but I just love the way it ended. It really closes off this particular installment yet leaves the perfect opening for the next book. And Zayvion?! I can’t wait to find out more about that guy! This is a nice Urban Fantasy story told in a distinctive and interesting setting and I am for sure going to be continuing with this series.
I am loving Allie Beckstrom. She has such a wit about her and a sharp sense of humor. She’s all sarcasm. And in “Magic in the Blood”, the second insta...moreI am loving Allie Beckstrom. She has such a wit about her and a sharp sense of humor. She’s all sarcasm. And in “Magic in the Blood”, the second installment in Devon Monk’s Allie Beckstrom series, you really get to witness these qualities that I personally love in a kick ass lead heroine.
That’s the perfect description for Allie. Even though she isn’t a gun wielding, knife throwing, kick boxing chick, she is totally kick ass. She’s got magic after all! She’s a Hound. Someone whose job is to track magical signatures back to the spell’s caster. And she uses magic to do so. But in Devon’s world, Magic users pay a price when they use it – they pay in pain. Allie tends to lean towards a migraine or flu. But sometimes when she overdoes it, she suffers from memory loss.
“Magic in the Blood” begins with Allie trying to piece her life back after losing quite a chunk of time in the last book. She starts seeing things and feeling things that she can’t explain. Part of her thinks it’s due to the fact that she was in a coma for a while and part of her thinks it’s because she’s nuts. While trying to figure that out, she finds that her father, a big wig she’s tried very hard to separate herself from, is still trying to control her life even after his death. In addition to that, she’s being threatened by an ex-con evil guy whom she helped convict. And she’s been asked to Hound a job for a member of the police force who seems to be having a run of bad luck. You see, quite a few who Hound for this Detective Stotts wind up dead. Yup, our Allie has a lot going on, which means we get a full and stirring story. But that’s not all that Allie is dealing with. The most important thing is that she is trying to figure out her relationship (or lack of one) with Zayvion.
By the end book one, you have no real idea who, what or why Zayvion Jones is. And really, by the end of book two you are no further along. Wait, that’s not completely true. You find out what he is…but then Allie passes out before she can ask questions. So once again, we are left wondering. Wondering about the dark, mysterious, talented magician that is Zayvion. Speculating about the man with the killer watt smile Zayvion. Thinking about sexy Zayvion. Oh who am I kidding? I’m trying to make it sound like a hardship but really, it’s not. If this book is any indication, we find out little bits and pieces here and there from book to book. But it’s not frustrating. It makes me want to read on. It makes me want to read more…while thinking of Zayvion. We know he cares for Allie and that he always happens to be around when she needs him. But when it comes to Zayvion, I think Allie says it best when she says: “Zayvion Jones just gets stranger and stranger.”
There are other supporting characters in this book that I quite enjoyed and I’m hoping they will keep popping up throughout the series. Violet, Allie’s father’s widow (I could say Allie’s step-mother but she is pretty much Allie’s age and that would just be odd). Her gentle and kind nature is just what Allie needs to help balance her. Kevin, Violet’s bodyguard. We know he’s a powerful magician and a good ally to have. I love how he is with Violet. Pike. Oh Pike. And finally Davey. He’s a fellow Hound who was asked to watch over Allie during one job and has taken his new responsibility a little farther than Allie would like. He’s just a kid but he’s full of spunk and fire. And he’s got the perfect attitude to help deal with our sarcastic heroine who is convinced that she needs no one.
The beginning of the book trudges along a little slowly due, of course, to the retelling of the events from book one, but you still get a taste as to where the story is headed. Once you get past that it’s go go go. And let me tell you, after reading book one and thinking I had a grasp on how this series is going to go, it went a whole other direction. One that completely took me by surprise but thrilled me just the same. I can see how there are endless possibilities as to where this series can go from here and I love it! And the ending of “Magic in the Blood” is a little more intense but still similar to the last one. Surprising but not dire. It makes you go “Whoa” and make you want to pick up the next book but not jump out of the window and hurt yourself to get to it. Those are the best cliffhanger endings.
So if you have yet to pick up this series and you are a fan of strong female leads in an Urban Fantasy tale, give it a try. You won't regret it. Really.(less)
And we are back with book three in Devon Monk’s awesome ‘Allie Beckstrom’ series, Magic in the Shadows. I know *bows head*not ‘we’…just me. But I am g...moreAnd we are back with book three in Devon Monk’s awesome ‘Allie Beckstrom’ series, Magic in the Shadows. I know *bows head*not ‘we’…just me. But I am going to make as much noise as I can about this book. Let me just say Magic Fight people! A Magic. Fight!!! But I’ll get to that a little later.
Before I continue, a little warning. I won’t be able to write this review without slipping a couple little spoilers about the first two books in the series. Nothing that will take away from your reading enjoyment, but I still thought I should give you a heads up.
In this installment, Allie is struggling. You see, Allie is no longer alone. Her father’s spirit/soul seems to have taken up residence inside her head. Yup, talk about a mood killer. She has been invited to test to join the Authority (sort of like a secret Magic police force) so you’d think that having her father in her head would be a good thing since he knows pretty much everything when it comes to spells and magic. But Allie is determined to take care of things on her own, without her father’s interference. They didn’t get along when he was alive. In fact she did everything in her power to disassociate herself from him as soon as she was old enough to. But her father isn’t quite ready to die and go away, and he’s about ready to do what it takes to make sure he doesn’t.
Allie really is a great character. She is flawed. She is untrusting to a dangerous degree, and sometimes I wanted to smack her to help her see that not everything has to be a fight. But she is true to her word and tries her best. And her wit! I love her sarcasm and her wit. She causes me to break out in short bursts of out loud laughter every once on a while. Examples of her snarkiness would include:
“I was demure enough not to flip him off with both fingers.”
“Not so much creepy as sort of barf-inspiring.”
In the previous books, Allie wanted so much to be secluded from her father and his empire that she flat out ignored everything that had to do with him. Then he died, and all of his responsibilities went to her (thanks to that little thing her dad left behind called a last will and testament). Allie wasn’t having it. If her father was involved, she wanted nothing of it. But she wasn’t thinking about all of the other people involved in the big picture. But in this book, she is finally coming around – and I liked it. It was very good to see her become a little more responsible. A little more mature and ready to take on some responsibility. And not just the responsibility for her father’s company, but also for her fellow Hounds (those who track magic spells back to their casters for a living).
We meet a couple of new characters in this book. One of which I want to squeeze but can’t because he’s too hard and the other I want to squeeze but can’t because Pamela has already claimed him. (*mumble grumble* Pamela *mumble grumble*) The first is Stone. He’s a stone gargoyle and he’s cuter than a puppy. The next is Shamus. He’s looking like he going to take on the roll of ‘smart mouth’ in this series. He is Zayvion’s best friend. Clever and sharp with a wicked sense of humor. I am really going to enjoy reading him in future books.
Speaking of Zayvion, we finally find out who and what he is! *cracks open the champagne* He is a lot more open in this book and I was very glad for it. He’s not only open with information about himself, but also about his feelings for Allie. And you get to see his vulnerabilities. Let’s just say that Zayvion has become more human…and that makes him that much more relatable.
One character that I wanted to smack and smack hard was Allie’s dad. Aug! Talk about an egotistical maniac. I just want Allie to figure out how to get rid of him! There is potential there for a great partnership, but dad is just going about it all wrong. And I don’t blame Allie for being suspicious of him. He’s a controlling man who needs to be smacked down a couple of notches.
I like how Devon writes. One of the things I enjoy is how the story’s climax isn’t at the very very end of the book. It takes place a few chapters before ‘the end’ so there is a chance for a bit of a wind down before you reach the end of the book. She leaves you wanting more without feeling like you are experiencing a heart attack. I really appreciate that about these books.
I’ll leave you with this. There is a huge magic fight in this book. It’s epic. It’s “sitting on the edge of your seat, biting off all of your finder nails and maybe even moving on to your toenails” epic. Just…epic.
The fourth book in this series, Magic on the Storm is sitting in my book closet just waiting for me to pick it up. I won’t be able to do that until the New Year but for sure it won’t be sitting there too too much longer. As for Magic in the Shadows, it picks up right where book two left off and carries you with it until the very last page.
Hell’s Belles by Jackie Kessler is a dirty little book. The sex scenes are hot. Geez, even the heroine’s daydreams are smokin’! But then again, what e...moreHell’s Belles by Jackie Kessler is a dirty little book. The sex scenes are hot. Geez, even the heroine’s daydreams are smokin’! But then again, what else would you expect from a book that tells the story of Jezebel, a succubus running from Hell’s Hunters who asks a witch to make her mortal then moves to New York City and becomes an exotic dancer to pay the rent. It does have all the elements for one sizzling tale….and it really does deliver on those elements.
It’s not just a hot book though. It’s a good book too! Jezebel is a succubus who is kind of going though an identity crisis of sorts. You see, she’s developing feelings. And demons don’t have feelings. That’s worst than having cooties! We don’t really know what happened that made her run. We just know she’s afraid and needs to get away. By becoming mortal, she figures she has a better chance of slipping under Hell’s radar. She is such a cute and charming character, full of conflicting emotion yet not too serious. She’s been around humans for 4,000 years, but she’s never been one. As you witness her trying to fit in, you can’t help but want her to be okay. And Jezabel is a funny gal. Her one liners are hilarious!
While waiting at the train station, she meets Paul. Paul is sweet and sexy and nice. And he doesn’t care when Jezebel cries because she’s been hurt or is confused. Yes, I said he doesn’t mind. Can there be a more perfect man?! Through the book we slowly learn about Paul, but for most of the book we only know that he’s a great guy who cares for our Jesse (the name Jezebel goes by). But don’t worry. You never feel lost and you will eventually get all the info you want.
The way the story is written is great. You know Jesse is running but you don’t know why. Actually, you don’t really know from whom exactly either. I learned the hard way that reading the titles of the chapters is very important in this book. I must admit that sometimes I don’t so much do that. I am too anxious to get to the story. (Am I really the only one?) So I’m reading away at this book and suddenly, I find myself lost. I don’t know why Jesse is in the bar at the end of the last chapter and in Hell in this chapter. Then I noticed that the chapters’ titles actually tells you when that particular part of the story is going to take place, whether it be now or before. Yep. Sort of important. *smacks forehead*
Through the story you are sent from the present to the past, from the hotel she’s staying at to Hell to the club. Jackie does this very well. The bouncing around never feels forced or awkward. The story is told as the story is supposed to be told, and everything falls in place at the end. And even though there is a happy at the end, there is also a lot of “but but but…” So it’s a good thing that there is another book in this series and lots and lots of novellas.
I am glad I finally picked up this book. I originally bought it because the reviews that I’d read said it was a good story with fun characters with a wicked sense of humor. And they were right. I really enjoyed this book. I laughed many times and giggled many others. I have the second book The Road to Hell in my book closet and I am going to pick it up because I really want to know where Jesse and Paul end up. They are an endearing, funny and hot couple. And really, is there a better combination?(less)