Though touted as NA, I found the characters and the underlying tone of the story more YA. Lots of angst, self recrimination, assumptions, and gene...more2.5
Though touted as NA, I found the characters and the underlying tone of the story more YA. Lots of angst, self recrimination, assumptions, and general drama. An okay story that didn't being anything new to the table. I kept wanting to skim through all the never ending drama to the good parts. (less)
Very one dimensional in characterization and storyline. Man kidnaps women; essentially taking her from one prison and putting her in another. Titi...more 2.5
Very one dimensional in characterization and storyline. Man kidnaps women; essentially taking her from one prison and putting her in another. Titillating but not engaging in the least. I am pretty much over dark erotica and forced BDSM. (less)
Favorite Quote: This is your life. This is your destiny. You must wrap you your feelings and fears and tuck them away in a box.
Night’s End is the last book in Yasmine Galenorn’s wonderfully dark and decadent urban fantasy series-The Indigo Court. *SOB* Fans of the series have watched in awe as Galenorn twists and manipulates supernatural legend and lore into a well crafted story of love, loss, betrayal, redemption, and destiny. Heavily character driven, strong and dynamic characterization have uplifted this series from a run of the mill urban fantasy into something unique and wonderfully entertaining. Smooth writing combined with dark world building immediately engrossed me into the storyline and the characters that inhabit it. The world that Galenorn originally introduced to us has evolved in leaps and bounds; extraordinary in it’s simplistic yet complex layout.
Night’s End picks up where Night Seeker leaves off. Cicely and Rhiannon each wear the crown to their respective kingdoms-Rhiannon holds the reign of Summer while Cicely holds firm to Winter. Myst has recovered from her last defeat and is rising swifty, destroying everyone and everything in her path. Queen Cicely and her allies know that this is their last chance to destroy the Indigo Court and it’s Vampiric Queen for good.
As the Queen of Snow and Ice, Cicely has grown remarkably in the series. A child forced to survive on the streets, caring for her drug addicted mother has become a woman more than worthy to wear the crown. Galenorn has chronicled Cicely’s journey in a remarkable manner, allowing her to make mistakes and and gain knowledge (sometimes at a harsh price) on the path to her destiny. I adored Ciecly. She is the perfect balance of strength, intelligence, and wit with a strong vein of vulnerability within her. She is trying so hard to be the strength her court needs and demands while controlling her own fears. Her tightly wound control is almost broken in here when Ciecly gets her first test as monarch when a traitor is discovered in their mists and Cicely must make some harsh decisions in uncovering them. Decisions involving her friends that shows Cicely how much her life and the choices she makes are no longer her own.
The romance, while always a low key but important aspect of the storyline, unravels itself out with her marriage to Grieve. I loved the reincarnation storyline used to explain their unbreakable bonds. Grieve is perfect for Cicely. His quiet strength, inherent goodness, and warrior status makes for a wonderful grounding agent against Cicely’s more interchangeable nature. Cicely needs someone as strong as she is to stand beside her but also someone who loves her all her sides.
“You’re my shooting star…my my dark queen in the middle of the night sky.”
Lannan Altos, Regent of the Crimson Court, has also played an important part in Cicely’s life and in here we understand exactly how and why. Though their relationship has been a long road filled with pain and humiliation, there is an aspect of his personality that allows Cicely to show her darker nature without any recriminations. Lannon understands her need for pain as it mirrors his need to inflict it. Lannon has also been experiencing some growing pains of his own that in sense, mirroring the changes Cicely is experiencing.
“Lannan fed the darker side of me, the side I didn’t want Grieve to go near. If Grieve stepped into those shadows, then my rock would vanish and I would be fully swallowed up by the abyss.”
The secondary characters are dynamic building blocks in this unfolding saga as each one has had a secret destiny waiting to be revealed, adding suspense and tension to the story. An engaging plot line and multiple sub plots feed upon one another as each revelation brings us closer to the end. Galenorn digs deeper beneath the surface, answering questions from the beginning and placing Ciecly exactly where she needs to be, despite her doubts.
Night’s End and the series as a wholeis a captivating urban fantasy that will appeal to both readers who love a strong female protagonist, non stop action, tense plotlines, and a bittersweet romance that leaves you astounded with each delicious installment. An altogether satisfying read that reaffirms Galenorn is a multi-talented author. Though sad this series had to end, I am left secure in the knowledge that there will be more fantastic adventures from Galenorn to come.
Not bad but the structure was weak, the romance under whelming, and the storyline was all over the place. The set up and reveal reminded me of Pulp Fi...moreNot bad but the structure was weak, the romance under whelming, and the storyline was all over the place. The set up and reveal reminded me of Pulp Fiction or Kill Bill in how the characters spoke and the event time line.
Warning: There are LOTS of triggers in here. (less)
As one of the beta readers for this book, all I can say it that Haines takes it to the limit in here and sets up a chilling tale of betrayal, deceptio...moreAs one of the beta readers for this book, all I can say it that Haines takes it to the limit in here and sets up a chilling tale of betrayal, deception, revenge, pain, and remarkably... hope. (less)
Favorite Quote: “You don’t need anyone to show you how to be good; you’re so much better when you’re bad.”
Shane ‘Bax’ Baxter has just been released from prison after doing a 5 year stint for grand theft auto. Back in town and more dangerous than ever, he is looking for his best friend, Race, who he thinks set him up to take the fall. Bax doesn’t know what happened or why, but he’s going to find out even if he has to burn the town and everyone in it to do so. Unfortunately, there is another person looking for Race and she refuses to get out of his way.
Dovie Pryce is also looking for Race but for different reasons. A good girl born on the wrong side of the tracks, she does her best to keep her head low and herself off the radar. She needs Bax’s help though and dogs him till he gives in.
Bax doesn’t need or want the responsibility for Dovie’s safety but when she dragged into the war brewing in The Point, Bax will have to lay aside his visions of vengeance in order to keep her safe. But who will save Dovie from Bax?
Welcome to the Point is a new series by Jay Crownover. Different from her Marked Men series, this one opens up a world of crime, drugs, violence, and death with a ‘hero’ who is anything but a good guy. Dark and gritty, Better When He’s Bad is a bleak look at life on the streets where only the strong can survive. Teeming with deception and betrayal; no one is exempt from judgement. A cast of interesting and dangerous characters who casually walk the line between good and bad and demand you pay attention as they help to lay the framework for the story. Fast pacing intermingles with various subplots, creating a well rounded entertaining book. Alternating viewpoints between our two protagonists allows us to see both sides of the events taking place, overlapping just enough for comprehension but not reiterating the same scene over and over.
Bax is over six feet of dark, intense, alpha delicious, tattooed sexiness. He is the bad boy your mama warned you about. The one you’ll give everything to and when it’s all over and you are left with nothing, you’ll steal to give him more. Growing up with an alcoholic mother and an absent father, Bax was forced to take the role of provider at an early age. Thus, his career in thievery began. Starting out small, he eventually caught the eye of the local crime lord and began to pull bigger jobs, leading to more trouble. Having spent a majority of his adolescence in and out of jail, Bax knows deep inside that with his last stint, he only has two choices from here on out-get out of the game or let himself be submerged fully into it.
“Sacrificing five years of his life for a bunch of bullshite has a way of leaving a mark on a guy…”
Crownover doesn’t sugarcoat Bax to make him more presentable or appealing. Rather, she uses his experiences and relationships to slowly peel back the layers and reveal the potential in him. He has issues that foreshadow his actions though he isn’t immoral. He has a set of rules he lives by and won’t compromise to appease anyone…that is until he meets Dovie Pryor. Dovie is a hard working college student trying to keep her head above water. Born to a drug addicted mother, she was thrown into the foster care system only to be saved A picture of innocence with her curly red hair and pale freckled skin, Dovie is far more street savvy than anyone gives her credit for. She needs to find Race and will do whatever it takes, forcing Bax into the protector role against his will.
“Having Bax act like a buffer between me and all the bad things in the world was a potent aphrodisiac…”
Bax and Dovie are a classic example of “opposites attract” A criminal and a saint who are forced into reluctantly helping one another. Dovie is the perfect match for him. Someone who is intimately acquainted with the harsh demands of life and family. She is seemingly his direct opposite but her own issues mirror his in ways, she is able to understand his motivations but still questions his choices. Not looking at Bax with lust struck eyes or as a future meal ticket, Dovie gets to know Bax and from there learns there is so much more to him then what he shows the world. I really enjoyed that she doesn’t roll over for him. She holds him accountable for his words and actions.
“I never trusted their motivations and I had seen too many girls abandoned because of pretty words rattled off a talented tongue.”
The romance and the main conflict build slowly, outlining the tension and fear our couple live with everyday. Bax struggles trying to keep everything separate and compartmentalized, only to lose it all when his past and present collide and all his secrets are revealed. Bax is forced to take matters into his own hands and commit the unexpected if he wants a life beyond the expected.
“Heroes have no place in this kind of fight. It takes nasty to fight nasty…”
This entire book is a speeding out of control roller coaster filled with twists and turns that will keep you clinging to your seat. An intricate game of cat and mouse that ends with some shocking answers that left me blinking in surprise. Better When He’s Bad is sure to appeal to lovers of bad boys everywhere. I look forward to the second book in this series, Better When He’s Bold, slated to release in 2014.
Favorite Quote: “…in this perfect moment, there is always fear.”
Emma Searfoss, a 22 year old engineer designer, has moved clear across the country to get away from her stepfather. Emotionally and physically abused by him since childhood, her victimization was made worse by her mother and two brothers allowing it to happen and not intervening. Blunt and in need of some anger management classes, Emma moves into a new apartment only to wake up the next day and find a strange man has made himself at home there.
David Calgaro is a 26 year old carpenter who, like Emma, grew up in abusive home. Contracted to replace the kitchen in her new apartment, his lack of boundaries infuriates then intrigues Emma. This outgoing and charming young man grounds her and soon their friendship blossoms into something more.
Emma feels safe with David, a first for her, and she falls hard for this mysterious man. But David has secrets. Dark secrets that involve his previous girlfriends. Emma knows David is hiding something from her but her attraction to him is strong and when he asks for the impossible…she must decide how far she is willing go for love.
How far would you go to prove your love to someone?
Would you lie for them?
Would you steal for them?
Would you kill for them?
Would you die for them?
Claire Wallis asks these questions and more in her debut NA novel, Push. A psychological romantic thriller that addresses the long term emotional and mental damage caused by childhood abuse and the lengths some will go to find peace and happiness. I use the term romance with hesitation because I don’t consider this a romance per say. It’s more of a love story steeped in tragedy and deception. Wallis uses an interesting set up in that the story opens at the end, essentially telling us what has happened. She then takes us back to the beginning to when Emma and David first met and begins to explain to us, in Emma’s voice, how she and David arrived at their point of no return.
Steady pacing peels back the layers of Emma and David, introducing us to two seemingly normal individuals whose similar backgrounds guide and attract them to one another. Humorous scenes, dry witty dialogue, and some very sexy sensual love scenes keeps the reader engaged as Wallis builds what looks to be a typical NA romance. As the book progresses, the tone changes. It’s a gradual feeling that you don’t realize is there until you feel the hair on the back of your neck raise. The very things that engaged you in the beginning take on a more sinister air. They mock you. Wallis digs deep into our protagonists’, giving us hints at the darkness that exists in both of them. Scenes from David and Emma’s childhoods only serve to further explain their idiosyncrasies while POVs from David’s ex girlfriends opens our eyes to something more insidious.
I have to say this book leaves you reeling once you reach the end. Emotions are jumbled as you try to figure out what you missed and when it all began to change. Did it actually change or was it this way all along but you just refused to see it? It makes you question your own judgement. Wallis does a fabulous job of twisting the plotlines; building upon a seemingly strong foundation, only to show at the end just how easily you can lie to others…and yourself.
“I know that we are going to be alright. I know because each of us consists of half lunacy and half absurdity-and neither of us is fit to be with anyone else.”
David and Emma are energetic protagonists. Wallis paints a vivid three dimensional picture of them; highlighting their flaws as well as their attributes in a manner that only makes them more appealing. Both come off strong, intelligent, and loyal. There is an interesting contrast shown here between Emma and David. Both are damaged but Emma seems to be better adjusted than David. She is able to express herself while David manipulates the truth and only comes clean when forced into a corner. Their relationship progresses fast; you can see an almost manic quality in the time they spend together. It’s as if they are clinging by the tips of their fingers, struggling to hold on. Their time together changes them. You begin to see them giving up some unhealthy habits and becoming more honest with each other.
“I admit that I am almost relieved to hear that his family is nearly as messed up as mine. I feel as if he’s less likely to judge me because of it, and that makes me happy”
Wallis doesn’t shy away from the sexual aspect as she allows Emma and David to enjoy a full and often consummated affair. Their chemistry is a palpable force felt throughout the book that only gains strength the longer they are together. I liked seeing that Emma isn’t slut shamed or forced to view her sexuality as a bad thing because of her past. This is usually a side effect in NAs when either protagonists has an abusive childhood. She initiates her and David’s first sexual encounter and it is enjoyed by both with no negative consequences.
“The phoenix is stretched out over my lap, rising and falling as he breathes.”
Though you think you know the ending…you don’t. Everything has changed and Wallis gives us just enough so we aren’t sure of anything anymore and leaves us in limbo; waiting for the next book. Though I thoroughly enjoyed this story, I do wish we could have gotten more of David’s POV in the present. As it was, I could only take most of what he said and did at face value since it was told to us by Emma. I am hoping that book two, title and release date to be announced, will be told in David’s voice and I can gain a better understanding of where his head was during all of this.
Push was a surprisingly fresh and unique treat to read. I recommend to all new adult aficionados who is looking for something new in this oft repetitive genre. I for one will be keeping a close eye on Claire Wallis in the future.
I really enjoyed this one. The heroine is no club bunny and takes no crap from the hero. I liked watching them fall in love and seeing the minute chan...moreI really enjoyed this one. The heroine is no club bunny and takes no crap from the hero. I liked watching them fall in love and seeing the minute changes that occur in each of them as they get to know one another better. The storyline is fast paced with advancements in the ongoing arc and a previous storyline from book two. The epilogue confused me a little because the arc is not resolved but your given the impression that this is the end.
Those with triggers may what to read the spoiler below.
What a mind f*uck. A dark erotic PNR that pushes boundaries and blurs the lines between good and evil. No one is who they say, nothing is what it seem...moreWhat a mind f*uck. A dark erotic PNR that pushes boundaries and blurs the lines between good and evil. No one is who they say, nothing is what it seems, and everyone has an agenda.(less)
Favorite Quote: “You’re a real bastard. Did you know that?”
Airiana Ridell spent her childhood going to school at a secret government facility where she learned to control and expand her extraordinary gifts. When her mother is brutally murdered, Airiana leaves the program and strikes out on her own. Fate leads her to Sea Haven and soon she is happily endorsed on the farm with her sisters of the heart. But there are dangerous men hunting for Airiana. Men who will stop at nothing to control her-killing anyone who dares to stand in her way. When Airiana is captured and held aboard a ship sailing towards her doom, her only hope is the man who kidnapped her in the first place.
Maxim Prakenskii, spy turned mercenary for hire, kidnapped Airiana thinking he was saving her life. Little did he know his actions would only serve to place her in further danger. Now Maxim must figure out how to save Airiana while pushing forward his own secret agenda. As the sparks between Airiana and Maxim begin to burn out of control, they learn all roads lead back to Sea Haven.
Feehan’s Sisters of the Heart series is a spin-off her Drake Sisters series. We are introduced to five “sisters” who have settled in Sea Haven; each burdened with a gift that has them in need of healing. Air Bound is the third in the series. Each book in the series plays off and expands on events that happened in the last Drake book, Hidden Currents. You do not need to read the Drake series in order to understand this series (each storyline is self-contained with a resolvable conflict) but the characters and long reaching arc do overlap.
I enjoyed Air Bound. An action based storyline filled with intrigue, magic, romance and some surprising humorous moments with an even steady flow and engaging characters. Feehan does well in introducing the protagonists and integrating their backstories into the main plot in order to give us a well-rounded informative base on which to begin our adventure. Multiple storylines run simultaneously, weaving in and out but never overwhelming the reader.
I have a love/hate relationship with Feehan’s books. Either her couples are perfect matches in strength and intelligence or the heroes are so alpha they completely overshadow the heroine and I find myself wanting to stab them repeatedly. Luckily, Air Bound is the former. While there is no denying Maxim is the quintessential over protective alpha, Airiana is more than able to hold her own with her limitless intelligence, fantastic gifts, and quiet stubbornness. Maxim respects Airiana and listens to her; treating her as an equal.
Airiana and Maxim similarities makes their pairing seem more natural and effortless. Both are air elementals though Maxim’s abilities are far more advanced than Airiana’s. They are the flip sides of a coin. Maxim was trained to kill while Airiana was trained to benefit. The chemistry between them is instantly noticeable, becoming more substantial as they get to know each other better. Airiana’s quiet nature grounds Maxim’s more volatile one and allows her to show him that he is indeed worthy of her love. Of any love. Theirs is an instant attraction but the romance is slow to develop. The love scenes are detailed and add plenty of spice to the story. Feehan doesn’t rush into their lovemaking for solid reasons, which makes it all the more tantalizing and sexy when it does happen.
I did feel that too much time was spent on Airiana and Maxim talking over their feelings for one another. Over and over they rehash the same points; Maxim feels he isn’t any good for her and Airiana tries to convince him he is. The story dragged here as they kept spinning their wheels in the same spot. Once they are able to move forward and not look back on their issues, the story’s pace picked up considerably.
There are two main storylines that intertwine in here, one of which harkens back to the events in Hidden Currents. Things are still up in the air with Ellie Drake and I for one can’t WAIT to see what happens when she and Jackson return to Sea Haven. And Feehan lets it slip they are on their way. Feehan also allows for more interface with Airiana’s “sisters”. We see their peaceful pacifist masks drop, showing they are definitely far more dangerous than it has been let on. I enjoyed seeing the inclusion of some faces from the past appear and add to the storyline, answering some questions that had been bothering me since the beginning of this series.
The conflict is resolved in an explosive action packed finale that will leave you ready for book four of the series. Fans of this series will not be disappointed by Air Bound. Feehan definitely ups her game with this installment.
Another enjoyable installment. LOVED the mystery and suspense. Plenty of bloody vampire action. Liked the romance though the push and pull of Raj's fe...moreAnother enjoyable installment. LOVED the mystery and suspense. Plenty of bloody vampire action. Liked the romance though the push and pull of Raj's feelings was wearing. I think EM needs her own story. :)(less)
Favorite Quote: “I’m with you until my last breath.”
**Tiny spoilers from book one, Last Hit**
At the end of book one, Last Hit, we learned that while Nick was able to save his lover Daisy, they weren’t able to save Daisy’s room mate, Regan. Kidnapped with Daisy, Regan finds herself sold into human sex trafficking and struggles to not lose her humanity in the face of her continuous degradation. Nick calls in a favor from a fellow mercenary who has spent the last eighteen months searching for his sister who was also kidnapped. Nick gives him clues towards his sister’s whereabouts asking that Daniel also search for Regan and bring her home.
Daniel Hays’s investigations lead him to Rio and Regan. Though his original plan was to save Regan and place her on the first plane home, Regan’s traumatic experience has her clinging to him. As they spend more time together, Daniel begins to develop feelings for Regan. Her indomitable will and powerful inner strength wraps Daniel around her little finger. Though Daniel knows he needs to let her go, each passing minute binds them tighter together until letting her go is the last thing Daniel will ever do.
Though Last Breath can be read as a standalone, the characters and a soft ongoing arc flows through the series. I enjoyed Last Hit and looked forward to book two. Last Breath is definitely darker and more emotionally structured romance suspense with a strong sexual base. Those with sexual triggers should read with caution. Claire and Frederick tackle a serious subject matter with honesty and consideration. I appreciated that the authors stuck to the facts without sensationalizing or dragging it out to try and amp up the drama levels.
Our protagonists, Regan and Daniel, are strong characters together and separately. Compelling narrative switches between Regan and Daniel, giving us the story from their points of view. Fast pacing keeps the storyline flowing a reasonable rate, not allowing for the choppiness that sometimes occurs with dual POV narrative. An action packed thriller whose multiple subplots keep the reader engaged while humor interjects at pivotal points to provide a reprieve from the serious undertones. Though romance is the end game it’s not the main objective. Neither of our characters are in a good place to fall in love yet the authors allow the chips to fall where they may and we are gifted with a love affair worthy of our protagonists.
We open with Regan and her thoughts as she is being sexually abused in the brothel where she is being kept prisoner. We learn exactly how she was taken and what has happened to her in the two months since. She tells us in a disinterested voice that makes the scene(s) even more chilling. She has learned to thwart her captors in the only way she knows how.
“I did everything I could to distance myself from what was happening to my body. [...] I lived inside my head. And I didn’t let myself think about the men. They are nothing to me.”
After her rescue, Regan is a mess of contradictions. She is unsure, untrusting, scared, hurt, and confused. She is standing in the eye of a hurricane, waiting for the next storm to hit. The authors do a brilliant job of portraying Regan’s fragile psyche and the internal conflicts that bombard her. Her fear, guilt, and anger are all natural, expected, and justified. “…because they couldn’t be bothered, I’d been left behind for someone else to find.”
Daniel Hays is one of the good guys. Plain and simple. He carries a lot of guilt these days. His sister was kidnapped while on a vacation he pushed hard for her to take. His parents blamed him for it and told him he can’t come home without her. That, combined with increasing dissatisfaction as an assassin for hire, Daniel is tired and ready to go legit. Deadly and dangerous with an outstanding sense of humor, he’s the perfect person that Regan never knew she needed.
Daniel unknowingly starts to fall for Regan from their first meeting. Though faintly attracted to her, he admits that is totally inappropriate at this time, he finds her strength and unwillingness to give up even more amazing in light of what she has gone through. Even when she does some questionable things that surprise and disgust him a little, he can’t condemn her for protecting herself. He understands what true survival is.
“Can you get me a gun?” “Do you promise to stop crying?” “I will if you get me a gun. Then I’ll just shoot you if I get upset.” “I think we can manage that.”
With intimacy being a luxury Regan feels she can no longer enjoy, the romance is extremely slow to ignite though the sexual tension pulsates through the story. Daniel does everything he can to give Regan back her freedom both physically and mentally. She needs to feel safe and in control? He gets her a gun. She needs to cling to him? Then she can shadow him all she wants. She needs to get back her sexuality? He allows her to use and experiment on him…with him in order to regain what she fears she has lost. He shows her in numerous ways that not all men are bastards and she can always trust him.
“There’s a storm inside of her and I don’t know how long it’s going to take to die down but as I cradle her on my lap I realize that the world could burn up and I wouldn’t let her go.”
Amusing new and old secondary characters solidify the mobster/gang mentality this series is built on. Nick and Daisy remain adorably cute as Nick struggles with being a landlord and Daisy tries to help him adjust to normality. We meet some of Daniel’s military buddies who have seriously gone off the reservation and one of Nick’s ex-employers drops in on Daniel and Regan, blowing everything wide open. I would have liked more insight to Regan’s kidnapper’s reasons. It seemed a little trite in the grand scheme of things.
The ending is a climactic violent finale that resolves the main conflict, giving Regan some desperately needed closure, and opens new pathways in the ongoing arc. We also get clues to future storylines and possible couples. Claire and Frederick have penned a sexy thrilling romantic suspense with a strong heroine and a to die for hero. Romance readers won’t want to miss their latest.
Favorite Quote: “I just want to get through every fucking day, as well as I can, until I finally die like everyone I care about did.”
Eve Blackthorn’s world has always been filled with vampires. Saved by a vampire as a teenager, Eve had no way of knowing the impact he would have on her future. She eventually falls in love with him and they marry, much to the dismay of some. Days after their wedding, her entire family is massacred and her husband, Robert, is convicted and executed for the crime. Now Eve works in a brothel, servicing the men who took her husband from her. She has reached a point where she no longer cares what happens to her. She is disconnected and broken. Everyone she has ever loved is gone; ripped brutally away from her without a single chance of saying goodbye. Left to her own devices in a world that wants her dead, she knows the vampire government had something to do with her family’s murder and her husband’s death but she has no way to prove it.
Eve pulls herself out of her downward spiral with the help of some unusual allies. As the truth begins to reveal itself, the secrets the vampire government are hiding points directly towards Eve. She learns that she has been merely made a pawn in a plot that threatens everyone. A plot that forces her to ally with the very monsters who ripped her world out from under her. As the clock ticks down, Eve will use whoever and whatever she can to avenge her husband, her family, and take back her life.
Absolution, book one in McGurk’s Vampire Alliance, is a noir urban fantasy with nail biting suspense, delicious betrayal, dangerous antagonists, and an underlying theme of heartbreak and sorrow. McGurk gives us a new look at vampires that is both appealing and appalling. Lush world building combined with highly complex and multi layered characters tells a dark story driven by the emotions of those who live it. The first half is slow to develop as the narratives alternate between Eve’s present and her husband’s past. Though it was a little rough acclimating between the two voices and seemingly unrelated storylines, as we continue reading, the two stories merge and you begin to see the big picture. From there, the story races to unfold along an illuminated path-only showing so much as you walk a twisted path with our protagonist. The smooth writing and descriptive detailing drew me in and I found myself becoming heavily vested in the characters outcomes. Ms. McGurk takes her time in developing her characters and their connections to the world and one another.
No person in here is exempt from judgement and everyone has an end game. Good and evil are merely words. The degrees of separation are fine threads whose ties become more visible as the story progresses. The past controls the future and this is amply displayed as we are given an intimate view of vampire politics and how the decisions Eve’s husband made in the past affected his future.
Visions of David and Goliath come to mind as we watch Eve face adversaries galore in her quest to discover who set in motion the events that sent her down a path of no redemption. Misdirection is your best friend as McGurk unveils a Machiavellian plotline that leaves readers and Eve reeling from the possible implications.
The romance of the story reveals slowly like a faint ray of hope. Lightweight and still developing, it packs very emotional punch. We see many different emotional entanglements- family, friendship, and love. Eve’s trust has been completely shattered and she struggles to kept everyone at bay. They all run parallel to the main storyline and are used to reinforce the main conflict.
As I raced towards the ending, I felt like I was on a roller coaster, my stomach pitching and rolling as each new clue and dramatic scene unfolded. I like how everything isn’t explained away and some decisions made, though I didn’t agree with them all, were the only choices that could be made. The ending is a climactic finale that satisfies the immediate storyline but leaves a cliffhanger that guarantees you need to pick up book two, Allegiance, which is available now.
If you looking for a unique character driven Urban Fantasy that delivers a fresh outlook on vampires, then I recommend getting Angela Louise McGurk’s Absolution.
I really have to be in a special mood to read Jessica Sorensen as she tends to write on some subject matter that evokes a heavy emotional response...more3.5
I really have to be in a special mood to read Jessica Sorensen as she tends to write on some subject matter that evokes a heavy emotional response. The Probability of Violet & Luke picks up 2 months after the end of The Destiny Of Violet & Luke. Book two beings more pain, heartache, drama, and emotional flagellation. Luke has hit rock bottom and is in huge trouble when he is caught cheating at gambling. Violet is back with her abusive foster dad and some of the things he requires from her are terrible. We do get some answers to questions and though it takes awhile, Luke and Violet are back on track (for them) in their relationship. The shocker that is revealed towards the end seemed to be just that-a plotline for shock sake. I liked it overall but I wasn't blown away. The endless drama and bad decisions seemed to be nothing more then a repeat from the previous book. I wanted to see some growth from the characters. I hear there is a book three to Luke & Violet's story. I hope they get a decent ending. (less)
I liked over all though I warn this story is dark. The hero does questionable things to heroine in order to facilitate the conflict of the story. I di...moreI liked over all though I warn this story is dark. The hero does questionable things to heroine in order to facilitate the conflict of the story. I did enjoy that the heroine was no wilting flower. She fights the hero almost every step of the way while they are at odds and doesn't put up with his crap. I liked that the author didn't romanticise or try to excuse the hero's terrible behavior in the beginning.
My only qualms besides the lack of communication and OTT violence is the rushed ending. I felt ending didn't support the build up. (less)
I liked this one so much more then book one, Ride. The filler and development issues seem to have ironed them selves out and the editing problems disa...moreI liked this one so much more then book one, Ride. The filler and development issues seem to have ironed them selves out and the editing problems disappeared. In here we get a better balance between the arc and the romance. Our H/h talk more and we are granted their POV. It's not the emotional immature mess that Ride was. Still violent and more then saturated with douche bag behavior, the actions of our H/h and the club members actually make more sense. They are in line with what you would expect and you get the explanations behind some of the actions. I did like seeing Ryan and Alex's romance(?) from more then one pair of eyes. It explains some things that left me confused in Ride.
I'm looking forward to seeing what the Forsaken get up to next. (less)
Wow. Otherwise Unharmed picks up right where book two left off. Evan is in jail for slipping his leash and finds himself smack dab in the middle of a...moreWow. Otherwise Unharmed picks up right where book two left off. Evan is in jail for slipping his leash and finds himself smack dab in the middle of a territory war with the FBI breathing down his neck and the love of his life finally back in his life.
Action, violence, danger,intrigue, and misdirection ends this trilogy with a well deserved BANG!
An enjoyable MM that examines the degrees of separation of good & evil when a squeaky clean farm boy social worker meets and falls in love with a...moreAn enjoyable MM that examines the degrees of separation of good & evil when a squeaky clean farm boy social worker meets and falls in love with a drug pushing pimp enforcer for his family's gang.
While I enjoyed the story, I did feel we missed to much in the development of the protags relationship. We get a small prologue of when they meet then it jumps ahead one year to where they are practically living together. I also missed not having an epilogue. It ends abruptly with over 6 months of time missing.
Regardless of any issues, I did enjoy the interaction between our protags and seeing the choices each had to make concerning their realtionship and the lives around them. (less)