Pleasure Me is a historical romance that features an aging courtesan and a young nobleman crippled by a hidden birth defect. Ruth Attwood is a woman wPleasure Me is a historical romance that features an aging courtesan and a young nobleman crippled by a hidden birth defect. Ruth Attwood is a woman who has not chosen her place in the world, it was a last resort but despite the circumstances that pushed her into becoming a courtesan, she behaves with grace and dignity. Ruth Attwood is the kind of person you want to know, and the kind of woman who could be very dangerous Garrick Stratfield and his secrets.
This is unlike Monica's other books in that there is no immediate, serious physical danger to the characters. Pleasure Me is more about two people finding themselves and each other. That's not to say that there isn't external danger, but they stand to hurt one another far more than others.
Each of the characters has a crutch: Ruth is hung up on her age, and Garrick believes his defect is more debilitating than it really is. I read this book straight through, so if you're like me, you're probably going to get to the last quarter of the book and shrug each time Ruth brings up her age. I pity Garrick getting through that stone wall! But it was Garrick's crutch that really hooked me. At a young age he was mocked for his defect and has spent much of his adult life compensating; so much that he's let much of life pass him by. I cheered for Garrick the whole time. He stole bits of my heart as I read. The characters, in Monica Burns style, come alive; not just Ruth and Garrick, but Garrick's sisters and Ruth's friends.
The supporting cast is just as endearing as the two main characters. Ruth and Garrick are not the only ones with a story going on in this book. A lot of books seem to forget that life goes on for people surrounding the pivotal couple, but not in Pleasure Me. The whole cast of characters connect with you on some level; from the character who got the second chance at life, to those struggling through the pitfalls of life.
As with Monica's writing, there's plenty of hot, steamy stuff between the sheets and everywhere else. There's also other elements of Ruth and Garrick's lives that intertwine through the story that just goes to show that age and disability mean a person doesn't live and do great things, even if those great things are small acts of kindness.
I love Monica's books; they make you feel, and not all writers can do that....more
I’ve heard a lot of buzz about J.R. Ward and I feel like I must be the only person on the planet that hasn’t read one of her books! When Suzan told meI’ve heard a lot of buzz about J.R. Ward and I feel like I must be the only person on the planet that hasn’t read one of her books! When Suzan told me that she had something besides the vampire books I’ve heard so much about, and that it was about angels I jumped on it. Covet has an interesting premise, seeing as there is the story arc contained in the book, and the one in the series.
The premise is that Heaven and Hell are just tired of the whole game of who wins what souls, so they stage a sort of one-game-to-end-all-games. Jim has to help or hinder seven people and based on the outcome Heaven or Hell wins that round. I really liked how the angel was not the love interest. Maybe I’m the only person, but the twist of it was really cool to me.
The plot shifts a lot between four different POVs, which plays with the readers head – in a cool way! It keeps you guessing and wondering about the plot. I will say this, the book does not dissapoint on action or tension. There’s always something going on.
When I first talked about reading a Ward book, I was warned that people mostly love or hate her books. I think I’m middle of the road. For as cool as the world and the premise is and as action packed as the book was – there was just something about it that didn’t grab me. Covet is written in a dark and gritty style, but it seems to hit a level and stay there. What is supposed to be gripping and dark gets a little monotone. I think Marie was the only character that really broke up the monotony, and even then only a little.
I’m thinking that maybe there was just too much to set up in the first book, and what I felt didn’t grab me in Covet will grab me in the next book, but I’m not in a huge hurry to go buy it. Loyal fans will undoubtedly love this book and the series, I can see why so many people are avid followers of her writing. There are moments when the characters made me laugh and ‘felt’ like real people with reactions I could completely get, which was why I kept reading; I wanted to know what happened to the ‘people’ I had come to know. Solid book, interesting series, I’m sure I’ll read more!...more
This story takes place in the Five Hundred Kingdoms; a world governed by the will of magic to follow set paths. PathsA Tangled Web by Mercedes Lackey
This story takes place in the Five Hundred Kingdoms; a world governed by the will of magic to follow set paths. Paths are stories like Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and so forth. Magic pulls a person who fits those molds into those types of stories – even if all the parts aren’t present and even if it has a terrible ending. A Tangled Web combines Norse and Greek mythology in the story of how Persephone is kidnapped by Hades. The story is magical, fun, and explores the traditional lines of fairy tales as the heroes try to use magic’s Tradition to work for them. If you’re looking for something fantasy, something magical, something adventurous – this is a great bite sized story to get into the world of the Five Hundred Kingdoms.
Other books in the Five Hundred Kingdoms universe include: The Fairy Godmother, One Good Knight, Fortune’s Fool, The Snow Queen, The Sleeping Beauty
Cast in Moonlight by Michelle Sagara
This is the one story in this anthology I knew nothing about. From what I can tell, Cast in Moonlight is a prequel story to the Chronicles of Elantra, which features Kaylin Neya. In Cast in Moonlight, she is barely a teenager, sent to kill someone. Her would be victim catches her and instead of the quick death she expects, Kaylin is given the chance at a new life. The world around the city of Elantra is complex – too complex to probably grasp in the span of this short story, but I can say that I’m interested. The different races, the magic system, the undercurrent of something’s-just-not-quite-right makes for a very compelling read.
Other books in the Chronicles of Elantra series include: Cast in Shadow, Cast in Courtlight, Cast in Secret, Cast in Fury, Cast in Silence, Cast in Chaos
Retribution by Cameron Haley
I’ll admit – I was really excited about this story. A prequel to Cameron Haley’s debut novel, Mob Rules, Retribution is a glimpse into what D’s life was like before the fairy world came knocking. In Retribution, D has to use her brains and juice to defeat a death curse, untangle messy mob business, and keep her nose clean from the cops. I love the world Haley has created for her Underworld Cycle books; they aren’t much on the happy, adventure kind of story. They’re fairly gritty, exploring the dark underbelly of the mob world as it could be if they dealt in magic and arcane.
Other books in the Underworld Cycle: Mob Rules (See my review of Mob Rules.) and Skeleton Crew, slated to be out May 2011....more
Like Clockwork is set in Victorian England during a time when automatons have begun to replace the lower coI’m a sucker for steampunk. What can I say?
Like Clockwork is set in Victorian England during a time when automatons have begun to replace the lower cogs of the workforce, displacing them into poverty and creating a new set of problems. It’s happened time and time again in history, and while some people might call that a cliche in a story, I think it gives credibility to the idea; a sense of this-could-really-happen.
I was surprised from the beginning how exciting this book was. Like Clockwork is a novella, around 100 pages. Unlike other novellas, this one doesn’t skimp on the elaborate plot. There are several facets to the story that I found myself wondering as the pages ticked down: how is all of this possibly going to be wrapped up? It’s an engaging and exciting read. The characters, Victoria and Dash, feel natural and not tossed together for the sake of a mixed social romance. In a world pushing forward, why wouldn’t it be the scientist woman that defies social standing for someone she sees potential in?
I really enjoyed Like Clockwork; I’m only sad that it was over so quick and there isn’t more. I want more!! ...more
I’ve been anxiously awaiting this book since I read Eternal Hunter (Night Watch #1). Oh Cynthia Eden you are a dark chocolate crack addiction. The NigI’ve been anxiously awaiting this book since I read Eternal Hunter (Night Watch #1). Oh Cynthia Eden you are a dark chocolate crack addiction. The Night Watch series follows bounty hunters who are more than they appear; they’re Other – paranormal shifters, demons, vampires, charmers – they take care of the things that go bump in the night. They aren’t perfect people, but they’re trying and it’s that constant struggle of nature vs nurture and choice that make these book really awesome. They’re dark and gritty and hopeful – oh yeah – and sexy.
Eternal Flame follows possibly my favorite character of the Night Watch crew; Zane, a hybrid demon who is proof that hybrids can have all the perks. In the previous book, I’ll Be Slaying You (Night Watch #2), Zane had a run in with an Ignitor – a person who can start fires with a thought. Suffice to say, they’re not his favorite people. So when Jana is both an Ignitor and attempts to play him – things don’t go too well, at least not for her.
I like how the characters continued to have flaws; just because the book is over doesn’t mean the characters have shored up those cracks in their personalities, they keep living with them. It’s probably one of my favs about Cynthia Edens characters; they seem like real people – ya know, if your neighbor was a white tiger shifter or something.
The Night Watch books are action packed – but Eternal Flame seems to take that to a whole new level. I was about halfway through the book and thinking: This can’t get any better, this is awesome! And then it pulls out the stops and keeps going. If you’re looking for something that’s steamy, paranormal, and full of action the Night Watch books are the thing to buy into. And you know what’s even more awesome? It looks like there’s a forthcoming book in this series/world due out in June called Never Cry Wolf. Can’t wait!...more
I passed Mob Rules several times in book stores, picking it up and pondering buying this, because lets face it, that’s a cool cover. But this book isI passed Mob Rules several times in book stores, picking it up and pondering buying this, because lets face it, that’s a cool cover. But this book is more than just a pretty face and an interesting story. I knew when I picked it up that it was urban fantasy, but I was surprised by the mixing and melding of histories to create the world Cameron Haley writes in. Magic is juice, gangs focus on who can control the most juice, but what are they really doing with it? I think that the world building and the plot are both amazingly done. This is more than just an urban fantasy – this is an interesting take on the gang world as it could be, the character deals with moral issues of what she has to do, but I’ll touch on that in a moment.
The plot is both a mystery and an action type story. Most of it revolves around Domino trying to figure out who is squeezing their people. In the beginning this felt a little slow, but that’s deceptive. There’s a lot going on, and it’s parceled out.
Mob Rules is written in first person, which has the difficulty of sounding more as if you’re being told the story by the character sitting on the sofa with you instead of shown the story through their eyes. There were times, especially towards the end when stuff what just stated – this is how it was – and I thought it lost a little of it’s mojo that way. (Note: I said a LITTLE, it’s still a pretty fan-frikken-tastic book.)
The other hurtle with first person, is drawing your audience into the mind of that character. You were pretty firmly ingrained in what Domino was thinking, though some things were left in the dark on purpose for the reveals later. For me, I read books and want to connect with the characters; I found it a little difficult to ‘hear’ Domino in my head because there was very little emotional ques on the page. For me, that was the weakest part of the book – but it’s not a bad thing or even a real weakness – that’s a personal readers preference. That said, there are times that you see and feel through Domino’s eyes, and one of those is possibly my favorite, even if it tears you up.
Book two is called Skeleton Crew and is slated to be out May 2011. You can see a picture of the cover over on Goodreads....more