This is still a favorite of mine. While I think Christopher is a bit too squishy for my tastes, as Ms. Kurland has a tendency to mak...moreRe-Read July 2011.
This is still a favorite of mine. While I think Christopher is a bit too squishy for my tastes, as Ms. Kurland has a tendency to make her terrifyingly powerful warriors have an incredibly soft underbelly. As such Christopher (and Colin both lol) tend to tear up a bit more than is to my preferences.
I still love how Gillian overcomes the horrible physical abuse she suffered at the hands of her father, as well as how Christopher finally comes to terms with the fact that his disability does not make him less of a man in truth.
Gillian's actions during her fever still feel unrealistic -- that sick and she's going to hold an entire (and rather lucid) conversation and not remember it? I could go with some incoherent babbling, but nowhere near the extent of conversation she holds with "blanket" during her recovery. Plus, I'm not certain how one can be burning up with fever but also be so cold that someone has to get into bed with you to warm you up before you freeze to death *shrugs*
A few unrealistic bits aside, this is still a favorite of mine, and highly recommended for fans of abused heroines in their historicals. 4.5/5 Stars
No really though, I adored Nykyrian. Even if I truly was about to stab myself in the eye if I had to...more(Kindle Book)
Ahh Acheron by any other name... lol
No really though, I adored Nykyrian. Even if I truly was about to stab myself in the eye if I had to read one more bloody time about how unworthy he was and how he was nothing but an animal and blah blah blah. Yeah. I get it. The man hates himself. Cool. Move along already.
I have to say Sherrilyn Kenyon is the queen of (literally) tortured characters. Good heavens talk about a miserable childhood for pretty much everyone in the story, but no one more so than Nykyrian. I can't even imagine anyone even resembling sanity after being put through all that, but despite his self-hatred and profession, Nykerian rocked my socks off as the absolute scariest good guy I think I've ever read.
Kiara was a bit annoying at times, but really no more so than her character called for -- in the beginning she was naive despite both her past and her belief that she was worldly, and she really was just as unfairly judgmental of the assassins as Syn accused her of. However, I do think that her character matured a lot over the course of the story..
The side characters were incredibly fascinating too.. Syn was probably my favorite (and is the hero of the next book, Born of Fire), with both Darling and Dancer being a close second.
I'm definitely looking forward to the rest of The League novels (I have them right here on my iTouch, ready to read!).
I'm kicking myself for waiting this long to buy the series, and I just hope the rest of the books live up to this one. 5 Stars.(less)
Expected Release Date: January 6, 2013 Publisher: Shiloh Walker, Inc. Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://jcdanielsblog.com My Source for This Book: Net...moreExpected Release Date: January 6, 2013 Publisher: Shiloh Walker, Inc. Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://jcdanielsblog.com My Source for This Book: Netgalley (AND purchased on Amazon) Part of a Series: Yes, Book 3, Colbana Files Series Best Read In Order: YES. Steam Level: Chaste Pet Peeves: None Favorite Tropes: Tattoos, Realistic Recovery Times, More than one male protagonist but no real love triangle
G-d I love this series. There aren't many times that I will purchase my own copy of the book after having received the Advanced Review Copy before the publishing date, but I gladly snagged a copy of this one from Amazon as soon as it was available, because I like to put my money where my mouth is, and this is a series I will support to the end.
First things first, I do think that it's important to read, at bare minimum, Night Blade before picking this book up. There is so much that happens in that book that shapes Kit's reality in this one that you'd be doing yourself a disservice in skipping it.
Once again, the author takes us on a hell of an emotional ride, but this time ending with a much more positive outlook than we ended on in Night Blade.
Don't get me wrong, readers looking for a "quick fix" of Kit's own personal issues stemming from the end of the previous book, or those expecting a lot of progression on the relationship between Kit and Damon may wish to wait until the next book is available, because Kit's problems are not ones that can be magically fixed by a few kind words and soft kisses. She has a long way to go until she's "all better". But I will tell you that I have rarely been as emotionally invested in a fictional character as I am with Kit, and the progress that she does make -- the victories as well as the losses that she experiences in this book, simply make my heart sing.
This is probably a little bit spoilery, so I'm marking it as such, but [spoiler]I loved Kit's tattoos. Not only the vivid imagery of the design itself, but the symbolism behind them and the physical and emotional ordeal of her getting magical ink. [/spoiler]
One of the best things about this book was probably the pacing. It was perfect, covering so much material but never feeling rushed, nor did the action and emotional roller coaster lag.
The one thing that made me pause was the editing in a few spots -- namely when talking about the blade called Death. His introduction had a few moments that felt a bit redundant, though on the re-read I can see how it was important to impress certain characteristics of his upon the reader. I did double check to make sure this hadn't been changed in my Amazon copy before mentioning it, as my original notes come from reading a more loosely edited copy, and the part in question is identical. A minor issue, to be sure, but it was still something that jumped out at me enough to have made it into my notes.
I would also like to take a second to mention how much I love Justin. I admit that I didn't care for him when he was first introduced into the series, mainly because I feared for the appearance of a love triangle, but I'm very happy to say that he's completely exceeded all expectations I had for him. He's not only a true friend to Kit when she so desperately needs one, but he's an intriguing character as well. We get more information about his past as well as his abilities, and I have to say, I'm liking the progression that his character has made.
There are quite a few other gems that I'm avoiding mentioning in my review because I think they're too much of a spoiler, but know that the characters you love in this series all play large parts. Some will break your heart, and others will help to heal them, and no, I won't ruin things by telling you what to expect on those fronts.
On top of that are a few little dropped hints here and there, about both Kit's aneira roots as well as her future in a world where Jude still exists, that I hope I'm reading right, because if so they're going to be some incredible additions to future books.
This book had me cringing, gasping, crying, and cheering -- not always in that order. I was very pleased that this book left us with a more hopeful note than the last one, and though I'm already dying to get my hands on the next book, I didn't feel as though the ending were a true cliff-hanger, as the ending of Night Blade was.
Overall, I of course loved it. Recommended for fans of emotionally damaged heroines learning to live again, of kick-ass Urban Fantasy action, and of really fun twists on old mythology.
I almost hate myself for enjoying this one so much. Very dark, lots of Very Bad Things happening to people, but awesome.
It's good to mention that ther...moreI almost hate myself for enjoying this one so much. Very dark, lots of Very Bad Things happening to people, but awesome.
It's good to mention that there aren't any shape shifters in this series though. The Dragon Kings are a sort of paranormal race descended from (or who worship, not 100% clear on that at the moment) The Dragon, their deity.
4.5-5 Stars, full review to follow once I get my thoughts in order. (less)
Ahhh that was bloody fantastic! Very much worth the wait.
While there were a few things that bugged me (that I'm not going to mention since I don't w...moreAhhh that was bloody fantastic! Very much worth the wait.
While there were a few things that bugged me (that I'm not going to mention since I don't want to spoil it just yet for those who can't resist reading reviews), I must say that overall this was one of the best stories in the series.
There was a nice little surprise at the end that had my jaw on the floor, and let me tell you, that doesn't happen often.
I'm very very anxiously awaiting Payne's story, though I know it'll be a long time coming (boo).
A word of warning though, do yourself a favor and read the series in order. While the earlier books (books 1-4 perhaps) are easy enough to read as standalones if you must, Lover Mine is definitely not for the uninitiated.
I will definitely be re-reading this one in the future.
It's entirely possible that I simply need to re-read Covet, because I see everyone else saying that Crave didn't quite live up to the standard set by...moreIt's entirely possible that I simply need to re-read Covet, because I see everyone else saying that Crave didn't quite live up to the standard set by that book. I disagree wholeheartedly. There was definite chemistry between Isaac and Grier, and the whole bit with Jim and Devina -- well, that was skeevy beyond words. Even though Jim isn't technically the hero of these books, y'all know how much I love a tortured male, and Jim's got it in spades in this one.
I did figure out the twisty twist way before the aha moment the characters experienced, and without giving ANYTHING away, I will say that things panned out satisfactorily.
I also died from a joygasm in reading the nice little tidbit from Lover Unleashed at the very end ;)
**spoiler alert** Oh how I adored this book! This is my third Elizabeth Rolls book and I think it's officially my favorite.
In my last review (of The D...more**spoiler alert** Oh how I adored this book! This is my third Elizabeth Rolls book and I think it's officially my favorite.
In my last review (of The Dutiful Rake), I mentioned that one of my favorite things about ER's books was the unnecessary angst often brought about by the insecurity and self-doubt of the hero and heroine.
I must say that this particular book didn't have any of that, and yet, I adored it.
We first met our hero, Richard, in His Lady Mistress (which is one of my all-time favorite books, but definitely falls into the "unnecessary angst" category), as Max's fraternal twin brother. In that book, we learn that when they were children, Max dared Richard to jump a fence (or something) while riding, and the horse fell on him, shattering his leg. He was told at that time that he'd never walk again, but our hero was too stubborn to listen and now walks quite well, albeit with a limp. We're maybe 6 or 7 months after the conclusion of HLM, as Verity is nearing the end of her pregnancy and is living in the country with Max.
Back in town, Richard and Max's stuffy Aunt Almeria (whom we also had the "pleasure" of meeting in HLM) coaxes Max into agreeing to stay with her in London. Unbeknownst to him, she's also agreed to take on her Goddaughter, Thea, for the season.
A childhood friend of Richard's, Thea has been living with her Aunt Maria for the past seven years, after her fiance died. When a wealthy relative passes on, his will states that if she marries with her estranged father's approval, she will inherit a large amount of money. If she does not marry, she will receive 200 pounds a year until she turns thirty, at which point she'll receive her full fortune.
Thea, however, is determined not to marry despite her father's grand plans to the contrary, and is quite happy to avoid the Marriage Mart completely. Now, if only someone could convince Almeria of the fact, perhaps things would be much simpler!
As you can tell just from the title, our heroine, Thea, isn't "an innocent" as is required in order to be considered a marriageable female in those days. As with the previous ER books that I've read, I did guess the full extent of The Big Secret (dun dun dun!) quite early on, but that didn't make the story boring like it could have.
While Richard does have one moment where I as a reader wanted to bash his stubborn head in, he's definitely one of my favorite characters. Unlike some of ER's heroes from her other books **cough**Max**cough**, he does not try to resist his feelings as they develop naturally for Thea, nor does he tend to say stupid, hurtful things in a fit of pique every four chapters or so.
Thea is definitely one of my favorite Regency heroines. She takes blame when it is rightfully hers, and she courageously stands up for what is right not matter what the cost to her personally. While she does try to make certain noble sacrifices, it's obvious from Richard's reaction in one scene in particular that she's not cutting off her nose to spite her face, but rather is just being realistic in the face of doing what she knows is the right thing. This is fairly unusual in regency romances, and I was very pleasantly surprised to see such a heroine in an ER novel.
It does tend to move a bit slow at points, and there's only one true "love" scene, which while nice, honestly just seemed to be thrown in there because it was expected. Maybe I'm getting old, or maybe I've just read way too much Twilight and other YA novels lately, but sometimes a "fade-to-black" is all that's really needed, and even a well-written love scene just seems a tad bit gratuitous. The sexual tension is fairly mild, but well done, and as I said, the singular love scene is quite nice.
This is definitely one of my favorites, mainly because I just adore Thea.(less)
Expected Release Date: April 21, 2012 Publisher: Courtney Milan Imprint: N...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: April 21, 2012 Publisher: Courtney Milan Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://www.courtneymilan.com/ My Source for This Book: Amazon.com Part of a Series: Yes, Prequel Novella to The Brothers Sinister series Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Steamy
This novella was so, SO good. I tell you, Courtney Milan never fails to deliver, and I swear to you she packs more punch in a novella than most authors do in a full-length novel. With well-developed characters, a very believable conflict, beautifully romantic sensuality, and and ending that will make you cheer, this is easily going on my keeper shelf.
Expected Release Date: July 31, 2012 Publisher: Penguin Group Imprint: Ace A...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic
Expected Release Date: July 31, 2012 Publisher: Penguin Group Imprint: Ace Author’s Website: http://www.ilona-andrews.com My Source for This Book: Amazon.com (Private Purchase) Part of a Series: Yes, Spinoff Kate Daniels Series Series Best Read In Order: YES Steam Level: Warm
One thing is for certain, this was a great addition to one of my all-time favorite Urban Fantasy series. Though technically a spinoff, I would in no way recommend that newcomers to the series pick this one up as their first introduction to the Kate Daniels world. While I’m sure that there is more than enough background and worldbuilding included to help those unfamiliar with the series easily follow along, so much would be missed. At a bare minimum, I would recommend that new readers pick up MAGIC MOURNS – the novella telling how Raphael and Andrea first got together (available only as an ebook for the standalone, but available in print in the MUST LOVE HELLHOUNDS anthology).
I really enjoyed watching Andrea get the spotlight for once. Don’t get me wrong — I adore Kate — but at the same time it was really nice to watch Andrea not only hold her own as a warrior, but to take her place in the Bouda pack.
Recommended for fans of outcast heroines with tortured pasts, estranged lovers, and exciting urban fantasy.
In the tradition of the other Banning Sisters books, this novel was full of secret plots, spies, and intrig...moreGood Lord this book was a long time coming!
In the tradition of the other Banning Sisters books, this novel was full of secret plots, spies, and intrigues.
I thoroughly enjoyed it. There was really never a dull moment, and every time it seemed that progress had been made, something else jumped forth to cause problems between them (just like I like it lol)
Sensitive readers should be aware that this novel contains attempted rape, kidnapping, and a sexual assault (some would call it "forced seduction", but honestly I think it may have crossed the line a bit).
It also has the dreaded "hero sees the heroine naked without her consent" thing which drives me NUTS in romance novels. Attention Authors: THAT'S NOT SEXY.
Despite that, however, it was a wonderful way to end the Banning Sisters Trilogy which started with Scandalous followed by Irresistible. Gabby/Nick and Claire/Hugh play a big part, as does their wonderfully meddlesome aunt.
I absolutely adored Neil, however. I know I may be alone in this, but one of the things I loved about him was that he actually, honest to goodness considered killing Beth -- just snapping her neck. Usually in romance novels (outside of Anne Stuart's creations of course lol), even the most hardened assassin hero would never consider killing an innocent woman who'd gotten in his way. I liked that he was all like "Man that sucks I'm gonna have to snap her neck. Oh well." (paraphrased of course :P)
The only thing keeping it from being 5 stars is the fact that the ending seemed really abrupt to me. Everything got wrapped up in a nice little HEA mind you; it's just that there was some fade-to-black smexin that seemed a bit out of place, followed by a short bit of action and then cut to what was practically an epilogue where Robards told us, rather than showed us how the rest of the stumbling blocks to Neil and Beth's HEA were quickly and tidily swept away. Knowing how long it's been since this book was supposed to come out (what is it, an 8 year wait?), it almost feels like Robards took the old dusty, unfinished manuscript off the shelf and spent a few days quickly whipping up an ending and sent if off to her editors so that she could just be done with it.
Still, despite that, it was a highly satisfying and attention-grabbing novel that I would highly recommend to any fan of the Banning Sisters novels (which, I admit, I suggest reading in order before picking up this novel, even though it could easily stand alone).
Expected Release Date: May 1, 2012 Publisher: Crescent Moon Press Imprint:...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: May 1, 2012 Publisher: Crescent Moon Press Imprint: N/A Author’s Website: http://lynnrush.com/ My Source for This Book: Gift From The Author Part of a Series: Yes, Book 2, Wasteland Series Best Read In Order: Yes, but worked okay as a standalone Steam Level: Warm Pet Peeves: Ancient/Immortal Paired With Young Mate, Forced Nudity Favorite Tropes: Plane Crash, Fated To Be Mated, Physically Imperfect or Scarred, Mute
I have read the first book in the series, but it’s been a long time, with a lot of books in between. Even so, I was able to keep up fairly well early on, and while I would recommend reading the series in order, I think that this one stands reasonably well on its own, all things considered.
Readers should also be aware that this is considered “Upper YA” or “New Adult”, and does feature some not-quite-closed-door lovemaking, though it’s written in a way that’s considered very mild by today’s romance novel standards.
I loved the blend of action and romance, and the fact that I was a huge fan of Annabelle from the moment that she appeared on the pages didn’t hurt either. The pacing was wonderful, with just enough “down time” between action sequences for both readers and characters alike to be able to catch a breath, but not so much that anything felt like it dragged.
While I do wish the romance would have been a bit steamier, I knew going into it that this was a New Adult romance, and as such, would be a lot lighter on the heat level than the books I typically read, so that was a very minor point.
Overall, I loved it, and am really looking forward to picking up the final book in the trilogy, TAINTED, which just came out earlier this week.
I've thoroughly enjoyed the entire medieval trilogy by Elizabeth Lowell, which started with Untamed, followed by Forbidden, and ending with this book,...moreI've thoroughly enjoyed the entire medieval trilogy by Elizabeth Lowell, which started with Untamed, followed by Forbidden, and ending with this book, Enchanted. Though they were, in some ways, a bit predictable, they were also quite satisfying in their conclusions.
I'm very sad that she has no plans for more medieval stories, but I do plan on reading more of her works.
Though each of her books can be read alone, I do highly suggest reading the entire trilogy in order. (less)
Expected Release Date: March 27, 2012 Publisher: Random House Imprint: Del Rey Author’s Website: staciakane.net My Source for This Book: Netgalley Part of a Series: Yes, Book 4, Downside Ghosts series Series Best Read In Order: Yes Steam Level: Steamy
This book broke my heart. It did. Broke it into tiny little pieces, scattering on the ground as I read. And yet, I loved it, just as I’ve loved the first three books in the series. It was thrilling. It was emotional. It was completely devastating, and the ending changed everything.
Chess is even more emotionally damaged than she has been in previous novels and it shows, with a very noticeable increase in her drug use, her self-sabotage, and her trust issues. There was one moment in the middle of the story where I was literally saying “no no no no no no NO!” out loud, and I admit, that sentiment returned several times over the course of the novel.
While not what I would consider to be a “steamy” read, I’ve always felt that the heat in this series is far higher than it would be with an identical scene in any other story, simply due to the emotions behind the love scenes.
I definitely think that newcomers to the series would be doing themselves a disservice by starting with this book, because while enough information was given to be a good refresher, there’s so much nuance and important history between all of the major players that a newcomer would miss having not experienced the previous novels. That, and I love this series so much that I think everyone should read it anyway.
Overall, I of course adored it. Chess’ self-hatred and self-sabotage did start to grate on me towards the end, which I admit almost kept it from being a 5-star read, but the ending was absolutely amazing and the setup for the next story has me frothing at the mouth at the thought of having to wait until June to read it, which more than made up for any irritation I might have had with Chess.
Expected Release Date: December 6, 2011 Publisher: Penguin Group Impri...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.com.
Expected Release Date: December 6, 2011 Publisher: Penguin Group Imprint: Signet Author’s Website: http://www.amandabonilla.com My Source for This Book: Netgalley Part of a Series: Yes, Book 1, Shaede Assassin Series Series Best Read In Order: N/A Steam Level: Steamy
Utterly alone in the world, assassin Darian is a Shaede — a being who can dissolve into shadows, move with unbelievable speed, and who cannot be killed. Having been created and later abandoned by the man who rescued her from an abusive marriage almost a hundred years prior, she has learned to rely only on herself, reinventing herself as a notorious assassin known for avoiding innocent targets.
However, her next mark will cause her to question everything she has accepted as truth, and in accepting the job, sets her along a path that will change her life forever.
I originally heard about this book on another blogger’s Waiting On Wednesday, which is a meme that highlights upcoming books that bloggers are excited about. I was lucky enough to snag an advanced reader copy, and let me tell you, I was absolutely blown away. I, quite literally, could not put this book down. I read it in line at the grocery store, I read it while I was cooking dinner, I read it while folding laundry, I read it propped up in bed that night. In fact, there was quite a bit of angst for me at the end when I realized that I would have to wait until July for the next installment in the series, despite the solid feeling of resolution at the end.
While not without faults, Darian’s character and the world as a whole sucked me in and refused to let me go. The first person point of view allowed the reader to experience first-hand the frustration, loneliness, heartbreak, and love that Darian went through over the course of the novel, and the high level of action and intrigue kept my attention from the very beginning.
Darian is a badass, no doubt about it, but her arrogance that served her so well in the past suddenly becomes a huge liability, and she has to learn to rely on others, as well as to sift through truths and lies in order to discover just what it will mean for her to become part of the Shaede community.
The world that Ms. Bonilla created is utterly fascinating, and the two main love interests, Tyler and Xander, were able to hold their own even against Darian’s oft-overbearing presence.
Recommended for fans of fast-paced, original Urban Fantasy, of strong heroines suddenly thrown completely out of their element, and of a sweet, albeit complicated, love story. A delightfully solid 5/5 Stars.