This is a fun book. It opens as witch Caitrin, staying at her friend's in Hampshire goes eReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (7 out of 10 on the blog)
This is a fun book. It opens as witch Caitrin, staying at her friend's in Hampshire goes exploring the house on the night of a full moon, and encounters a rather handsome man. Inexplicably drawn to the man, they share a passionate kiss and then before she knows it the man is biting her!
Shocked by her encounter, Caitrin flees the house the very next day to return home to Scotland.
Dashiel is a lycanthrope, raised by his human father he has never come to terms with his condition and has never fully learned to control or accept his beast. Then in one moment of passion he's claimed a women as his mate and bound them together forever, only to find she's disappeared in the morning.
In a bid to try and control his beast, Dash has been assigned a mentor. A man he must travel to Glasgow to meet. Cue lots of fun and games as Dash ends up chasing Cait all the way to Scotland, while she tries her very best to elude him.
As well as a paranormal novel, this book also has a historical setting. Although I'm not really sure what the historical setting added to the novel. Caitrin is as independent as any modern woman, which makes a great match for the undeniable alpha male that is Dash.
Before claiming Caitrin, Dash was a promiscuous rake even writing his own 'Journal of Debauchery' cataloguing his exploits. So it's rather entertaining watching the previous womaniser trying to seduce the prickly Caitrin.
But Dash is not a two dimensional alpha male, he has a sad past and a broken family life that weighs down on him. This past adds layers to the character who otherwise may have been a touch irritating.
By comparison, Caitrin has a gift of her own. She's a witch who has the gift of foresight. A gift that brings with it responsibility and often pain. Imagine knowing every person you know and loves destiny, and having to be careful not to influence it, even if that inaction can upset them.
The romance between the two characters is sweet, perhaps a little twee towards the end, but cute never the less. It's a warm story about acceptance and true love that only serves to make you stronger.
A small comment on the use of Scottish dialect in the narrative. It does take a little while to get used to and made some of my reading halting at first, but after you get used to it, it's really not a problem.
Also, this book is the fourth in a series, but I have not read any of the previous stories and think it's very easy to pick up as a stand alone novel.
I liked this book, it was light-hearted, fun and a nice bit of escapism. The interactions between the characters were amusing and the pages flicked by with ease. I've now gone and added the first three books in the series to my increasingly large wish list....more
With its lush and vivid setting I'm tempted to call 'Trade Winds' a beautiful book. Set maReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (7 out of 10 on the blog)
With its lush and vivid setting I'm tempted to call 'Trade Winds' a beautiful book. Set mainly in Sweden, but with parts of the story told in Scotland and China in transports you through both time and cultures in 1732. I know next to nothing about Sweden, but I got a strong sense that this book was well researched and the author paints a distinct vision of each setting the book takes place in. I particularly loved the parts in China.
The heroine is Jess van Sandt a woman who has been raised in Sweden. Her now deceased father had been a forward thinking man, and with no sons to pass his business to had taught and encouraged Jess to be a part of it. But when her mother remarries, her new stepfather assures Jess that the business is now his, and her father's Will left her with nothing but a dowry for her marriage.
Jess is a determined and intelligent women and knows that something is amiss and desperately tries to get to the bottom of her stepfather's subterfuge. Wanting nothing more than the right to what she legally believes to be hers.
Living in the modern world, with a career of my own, it's easy to forget what it used to be like for women in the past. To not be able to own your own property and be entirely dependant on the men in your life. But this book really did make me think what it must have been like. I admired Jess's wits and courage and fumed at the injustices against her.
As a hero, initially you could be fooled into dismissing Killian as a bit of a gambler and a rogue. But peel beneath the surface and you'll find he's a very complicated man. A man that's determined to prove himself. Disinherited by his Grandfather, he seizes the opportunity to travel to Sweden and apprentice to Jess's stepfather to learn a trade and prove himself.
The love story isn't instantaneous, or a clash of lusty wills as you sometimes see in romances. It's Killian's dislike of injustice that draws him to help Jess, rather than some nefarious or romantic purpose. But just as Jess does, you slowly become charmed by him.
However, this book is more than a love story, the epic journey to China adds a real sense of adventure, and of course it really was an epic journey in those times. There's more than one villain to keep you on your toes and I found the history and Far Eastern culture fascinating.
There are four things that really make this book work. The beautiful setting, the obvious historical research coupled with the adventure and love story. This isn't what I would class as a fluffy romance, it's a rich and engaging novel with a romance story at the heart of it....more
A fun collection of chapters giving you Curran's point of view from each of the Kate Daniels books. A very quick read, but if you're a fan of the seriA fun collection of chapters giving you Curran's point of view from each of the Kate Daniels books. A very quick read, but if you're a fan of the series you'll enjoy this sneak peak into Curran's mind. ...more
I ended this story frantically leafing through the book in the hope that theThis book was reviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (7 out of 10 on the blog)
I ended this story frantically leafing through the book in the hope that there were even just a couple more pages for me to inhale. But sadly there wasn't. But if I had the second book to hand I would have picked it up immediately (you have been warned!).
I really wasn't sure what to expect when I picked it up, besides from the fact I really love the cover! This is Laura Kreitzer's first novel and while I have nothing but respect for what she's achieved, to a certain extent it does show. The book could have done with a little bit more refinement and editing to move this book to an 8 or even 9/10.
In particular, the book got off to a bit of a shaky start, the first 100 pages or so didn't seem to gel together very well and the writing wasn't as tight as it could be. For example, you are introduced to a lot of characters of varying importance, who then disappear later in the book and are not seen again. Just when I thought I'd worked out who the love interest was going to be, everything changed. In fact the introduction of the first character as a potential love interest was a little bit odd, it builds nicely and then is completely abandoned.
So if you're not a patient reader this beginning could put you off. But, my advice would don't give up, because after those first 100 pages the story took on a life of its own and I was totally absorbed.
The lead character Gabriella is a scientist working in a top secret government laboratory who are dedicated to proving the existence of the supernatural. Gabriella is a super intelligent woman, who graduated years ahead of her class, she's also a skeptic. Her youth, extreme intelligence and skepticism have meant she has become isolated from her peers.
Then one day a shipment arrives from Italy continuing the prone bodies of three humans with the eerie ability to regenerate. Gabriella is in equal parts fascinated and terrified as she studies her new subjects.
This is another book to embrace the trend for writing about angels, but the concept is unique. The angels are not what you and I would expect them to be. The supernatural world and storyline is well defined, interesting and the plot has some great revelations that will keep you guessing.
When the love story finally got going and you understand who the male lead is, it's fabulous. I absolutely adored Andrew, and the love story in this book is what I call a breath-stealer, it literally took me away and made my heart squeeze. Which, while I will not spoil it for you, made the epilogue completely heart-breaking.
A fantastic debut novel, by the end of the book I had fallen in love with the characters and I really look forward to finding out where the story goes and how Laura Kreitzer's writing skills develop. ...more
'Divine Darkness' is a compilation of short stories from four popular authors in the paranormal romance genre. ThereReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
'Divine Darkness' is a compilation of short stories from four popular authors in the paranormal romance genre. There has been a trend for compilations of this nature for a while and for the most part I've avoided them. There's a sceptical part of me, that thinks that they're a bit of a marketing ploy. I also often struggle with short stories and find myself wanting a bit more detail and depth.
But I took my sceptical hat off, and sat back to enjoy my reading. I've read books by two of the authors before - Gena Showalter and Maggie Shayne, but not the other two. So this gave me a chance to see if I would enjoy the other two author's writing styles & stories. I've wanted to pick up a P.C. Cast book in particular, for a while.
The first story of the book is by PC Cast and is obviously from one of her developed series. It tells of a healer who ends up falling for an enemy soldier. It has a fantasy setting and not having read any of the other books, I wasn't fully aware of the rules or background of the story. It did feel a bit rushed, with the characters meeting on one day and falling in love in the next. That being said, however, the story intrigued me. I very much liked the two leads and wanted to learn more about them and the setting captured my imagination. As a consequence the first book of this series is now on my wish list.
The second, is Gena Showalter's we meet a sultry vampire Zane who is being held captive by a tribe of supernatural amazon women. They have captured a group of powerful men and then begin to battle to decide who will mate with whom in order to produce the strongest children. But Zane has a long lost love, Nola who is being punished and exists invisible to everyone, she can only watch as Zane is tortured. Nola needs to break her curse in order to save both herself and the man she loves. This book is a light, paranormal romance written very much in the style Gena Showalter is known for and fans will enjoy, even if the scenes of the women fighting over the men did make me cringe a little.
Maggie Shayne writes the third story, named 'Voodoo'. The name says it all, it is a tale of voodoo magic. Holidaying with her sister in New Orleans, Tessa becomes plagued by strange dreams and fascinated by their handsome tour guide. But as the dreams turn to hauntings and her fascination with the handsome guide leads her to do some research into the local history, Tessa discovers something about herself she could never have imagined. The second two stories of the book are certainly better than the first. Maggie Shayne managed to pack a nice amount of tension into a small amount of pages, an enjoyable short story.
The phrase saving the best until last definitely applies here. I've never actually heard of Rhyannon Byrd so I wasn't sure what to expect from her story. Set in the 1800s, it tells of warrior Rhys who has been assigned along with his troupe of soldiers to protect Alia and her father. Since his assignment began, Rhys has admired Alia from afar since, knowing that he can never have her. But a deadly betrayal changes all of their worlds upside down and Rhys and Alia must work together to save her father's critical work. A riveting read, filled with believable chemistry simmering between Rhys and Alia. I definitely want to read further books from this author.
Despite my skepticism, for the most part I enjoyed this book. I did feel particularly with the first two stories that they would have worked better fleshed out with some more detail and as longer stories. I was expecting more from PC Cast, but it gave me enough of a flavour to want to read more of her books and I think I'm officially now a Rhyannon Byrd fan. So, perhaps the marketing did its work after all ;-)...more
Nearly sixteen years ago the 'Shift' happened. And every child that has been born since caReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (7 out of 10 on the blog)
Nearly sixteen years ago the 'Shift' happened. And every child that has been born since can see and communicate with ghosts. The world is divided into two sub sets, post and pre shifters, those who can see & those who can't.
The Shift has changed everything. Ghosts can now testify in their own murder cases. Certain building & rooms in your house have to be 'black boxed' so that ghosts cannot go into them. Red has become the all prevailing fashion statement of the under sixteens. A colour ghosts cannot abide.
Most ghosts are harmless, if not persistently irritating. But there are the ghosts that become Shades - dark, malevolent spirits.
At nearly sixteen years old, Aura is a post-shifter. She's spent her life being able to see, talk to, and wherever possible ignore ghosts. She has an amazing boyfriend - Logan. The night of his seventeenth birthday is supposed to be perfect. That is until it all goes horribly wrong and he tragically dies. Suddenly being able to talk to ghosts takes on a whole new meaning and she prays that Logan will come back to haunt her.
But, as Aura struggles to come to terms with her grief she becomes friends with a new transfer student from Scotland: Zachary. Zachary is kind, understanding and has a rather sexy accent. As her friendship with Zachary grows, she realises that she has to make an impossible decision between the two men in her life. One dead, one alive.
I expected this book to merely be a tragic & haunting, in more ways than one, coming of age love story. But it was more than that and in the final third of the story, the pace changes as we realise a few of the characters have some secrets they haven't been sharing.
I loved the originality of the book, this new ghost ridden world that only children and teens can see was imaginative and interesting. I was intrigued by the mystery of the Shift and what caused it. While we begin to explore the mystery, the story barely scratches the surface so I look forward to discovering more as the series progresses.
This was a surprisingly easy read, and while it was sad and moving, it was written in a way that wasn't over wrought.
A refreshingly different young adult novel, that is sad and at times intense, but never the less enjoyable. The storyline was developed slowly and the second half certainly has more pace than the first. We're given just a few hints of what is to come in the subsequent books. It doesn't reveal much, but what it does give is just enough to leave you wanting more....more
I have to say as a self confessed bookaholic, there's something super exciting about beingReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (6 out of 10 on the blog)
I have to say as a self confessed bookaholic, there's something super exciting about being able to get my mitts on a book before it's even released. It gives me a warm feeling inside ;)
Seventeen year old Ellie is your typical American teenager. Until she begins to have strange dreams and visions and then one night hears unusual noises in the dark. She learns of the existence of reapers. Evil beings that kill and steal people's souls.
This coincides with the arrival of Will, who proclaims to be her very own Guardian Angel. Will tells her that she is in fact the Preliator, a powerful warrior reborn again and again over thousands of years into a mortal's body. And that she is the only person that can fight and stop the evil reapers.
As a teenager she has enough to worry about with her school grades, friends, and Ellie does not welcome this discovery, especially after a reaper causes her to right-off her car.
With her powers awakened, Ellie cannot escape her destiny. What starts with reluctance turns to passioned determination. Reinforced as her visions affect her everyday life as the memories of her previous lives bleed their way into her consciousness.
There seems to be a theme for reincarnation stories lately, as this is the third one I've read so far this year. All with young women as the leads. I have to say I quite like them and in each book have been interested to see how the past affects the present day character.
Some of the best parts of the novel were the fight scenes. There are some fantastic fight sequences. In particular, the final battle on a liner in the middle of the ocean was inspired. And it will no doubt keep you on the edge of your seat.
The love story in the book is tender and engaging. Nothing adds to the edge of a romance like forbidden love and I found my heart squeezing at some of the scenes.
However, despite enjoying many, many aspects of the book I didn't quite love it. Maybe I'm just a little 'YA'd' out at the moment, but at times I found Ellie a little irritating and superficial. It was hard to get my head around her and her parents almost flippant towards money. Additionally, Will was a fascinating character, but I wanted to know more about him, to understand the character behind the boy who has been in his late teens for the last six hundred years.
A good read and without a doubt it was the action packed fight scenes that made the story. I think it's a book YA fans will love, while I do have a couple of reservations it is still one I would recommend. ...more
'The Crowded Shadows' takes off where 'The Poison Throne' had left us. With Wynter, leaving her dying father behindReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
'The Crowded Shadows' takes off where 'The Poison Throne' had left us. With Wynter, leaving her dying father behind in the corrupt court to embark on a dangerous and lonely quest. She must travel through the dangerous and bandit infested forest, a solitary, young women as she tries to track down the exiled and believed traitorous Prince Alberon, who was once her dear friend. Her hope in finding him is that she may get to bottom of the darkness that is seeping through the Kingdom and save her friends.
As I begin this review, I'm not quite sure where to start. This book really wasn't I expected it to be at all. It takes you on a remarkable journey. Wynter is such a brave and eminently likeable heroine. A mixture of strength and diplomacy, yet vulnerable at the same time. In fact all of the characters are magnificently well rounded. My heart was in my mouth as Wynter travelled on her own, terrified that something was going to happen to her and fracture her lovely innocence. So it was with a huge sigh of relief when the book welcomed Razi and his companion Christopher back into the fold.
Travelling through the forest together on their journey to find Alberon, the trio encounter the ruthless and terrifying Loup-Garous. We learn more about Christopher and his time as a slave, a prisoner of this terrifying wolf clan. With nowhere to turn, they end up taking refuge with the Merron.
The plot is quite intrinsically complicated and keeps you guessing at all times. The Merron are an ancient and superstitious tribe. But Wynter and Razi have one thing on their side, Christopher's adoptive father was Merron, and he was raised in their culture and he understands their strange and dark traditions.
You spend a lot of the book feeling as puzzled and confused as Razi and Wynter are. As Christopher tries his best to manoeuvre his friends through the ancient Merron ways without them getting hurt and the Merron getting offended. It soon becomes evident that the Merron are part of the ever growing political web that is surrounding the Kingdom and they cannot afford to alienate them. But their culture is shocking and tests the trio's friendship to its limits. There are scenes in this book that will absolutely make you gasp.
The three main characters continue to be at the heart of the story, governed by their friendship and loyalty to one another. I wasn't sure about the blossoming love story between Christopher and Wynter at the end of the last book, but my feelings changed in this one. Their tenderness for one another was warm, sweet and captivating.
A lot of the initial story development from 'The Poison Throne' was put on hold, we learn nothing of the ominous 'bloody machine' and it looks as though we're going to have to wait for the third and final book to get those much needed answers and to meet Prince Alberon. But while this should have been frustrating, it really wasn't. This book had an important part to play in the overall journey and development of both the characters and the story.
I've seen this trilogy often classed as a young adult novel, but it really doesn't feel like one to me despite the fact that Wynter is only fifteen years old, she comes across as much older. Also this is definitely a part of a trilogy and not a stand alone novel.
I really enjoyed this book. Celine Kiernan is a very talented writer and she builds her stories cleverly and with obvious passion. The first two books of the trilogy so far have been well crafted together. It's also quite unusual for me to be looking to the end of a trilogy without a clue as to how it's going to end and I can't wait!...more
I have to confess to being quite a closet Christine Feehan fan. I've read nearly all of her CarpathiaThis book was reviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
I have to confess to being quite a closet Christine Feehan fan. I've read nearly all of her Carpathian books and every one of the Sea Haven series. It's no secret that they can be quite formulaic and dare I say it, a little bit cheesy! But when you're looking for some escapism and indulgence, they're perfect.
'Waterbound' is a new series, which is a spin off from her Sea Haven books. Although, a lot of the characters are mentioned and pop in the narrative, I don't think you need to have read them before picking up this one.
Rikki is a sea urchin diver. She is scuba diving for urchins, when a giant, unexpected wave hits. Underwater she becomes disorientated. Out of nowhere she sees a man in the sea. Obviously thrown over board, he is in normal clothes and has no breathing apparatus. With no choice but to try and save his life, Rikki shares her air with him and drags him onto her boat.
But, Lev is a ruthless man with many secrets. Saved by Rikki he has no idea who he is. But when his first instinct is to kill Rikki and steal her boat he begins to realise that he may not exactly be a very good person.
Despite his tendency for violence, Lev is inexplicably drawn to the different and charming Rikki. I loved Rikki. She's unusual for a romance lead because she's autistic. This made the love story different and engaging, and added an interesting dynamic to the book.
Additionally, Rikki is one of six sisters. Not sisters by blood, but as the series suggests, 'sisters of the heart'. Women pulled together by friendship and circumstance. Who all met whilst attending a specialist grief counselling group. We meet each of the sisters briefly in the novel and while we are told each of them has a paranormal gift. We only discover Rikki's in this book. But, the brief glimpse of the relationship between them all is compelling, and I look forward to learning more about each of them in their own stories.
For those of you who have read the Drake sisters' stories, you will recognise the surname Prakenskii. It is of course the surname of Joely's husband Ilya. And also, a sinking boat and a large wave may ring some bells. Yet, despite the obvious connections, very little is done with them in the story. Which made me wonder why they had been drawn in the first place.
This aside, I have a couple of comments on the story. Firstly is that the beginning is very slow moving. I loved the fact that despite his ruthlessness, Lev was very gentle and patient with Rikki. And because of her autism the romance needed to grow slowly, but at times it crawled a little too slowly.
The second is the action. There are two sinister plots shrouding Lev and Rikki's story. Both of which are grown throughout the book, the tension carefully developed. Then comes the ending and it's all over simply too quickly and easily for my satisfaction. I wanted the edge of the seat action to be drawn out for longer, or even better laced into the narrative earlier in the book.
Despite some reservations, I still did enjoy this book. If you're a Feehan fan, I don't think you'll be disappointed. If you haven't tried any of her books, and fancy a sweet and while I say it affectionately, yes somewhat cheesy romance then give it a go. ...more
Where to start?! I loved, loved, loved it! This book is a re-read for me, well I guess technically a re-listen. I reReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
Where to start?! I loved, loved, loved it! This book is a re-read for me, well I guess technically a re-listen. I read it back in 2010 and I enjoyed it. In fact it was one of my Top Ten Reads of 2010. And when I was sent it and Fire (the second book in the series) as audiobooks to review, I decided to read/listen to it again. I gave it 3/5 the first time, but after my second run through I’m going to have to increase it (what was I thinking?!)!
This really is a fabulous book. Cashore’s world building is immense and she has drawn a vivid picture of the seven kingdom GRACELING resides in, but what has the clincher for me was her completely rich and complicated characters.
Let’s start with the concept. A world where a select amount of people are born with a special gift, these people are called ‘gracelings’, these people are easily identified by their unusual different coloured eyes. For most people this might be swimming, cooking, dancing or even fighting. Enter our main character Katsa who at the age of eight, killed a man with her bare hands. Her grace is killing.
Katsa is such a unique and fascinating character. She is moody, strong, determined, wilful and often rude, refuses to ever marry and horrified at the idea of falling in love. She is awesome! She made me laugh regularly, she is one of the toughest heroines I’ve come across, I don’t think any of my favourites could take her!
It’s strange because in my own personal life, a lot of Katsa’s personal ideals differ vastly from my own. For example, the idea that marriage somehow makes a woman weaker, the fact that she never wants to be a mother. And while I did strongly disagree with these opinions, I understand that these thoughts, fears, and yes for Katsa horrors, are what made Katsa… Katsa. The life that she has lived, her grace, her upbringing do not endear her to a life of marriage and motherhood. But the writing twists its way until we see Katsa having to protect the life of a young girl against an unimaginable evil with her own. I respected her, for what made her tick, and I thoroughly enjoyed the ride the plot took both Katsa and me as the reader on.
As a counter balance to Katsa we have Prince Po. He is much more grounded and down to earth, warm, kind and gentle, but ruthless in his own way. His grace is so cleverly developed as the book progresses, opening up his skill and friendship in ways with Katsa that I hadn’t anticipated.
The love story was unexpected. It was so sweet and tender, there was something quite beautifully innocent about it. It was completely lovely and captivating. I think I read too many romances as I so wanted the fluffy white wedding and due to the nature of the book, I knew I was never going to get it. But I still absolutely (yes I’m going to use the word again) loved it!
The plot, again … where to start?! Well it both begins and ends with a kidnapping. The first an old man, the second a young girl. And the journey in between is an intrinsically woven plot, drawn together bit by bit, unraveling like a powerful, lethal and beautiful snake.
The story has everything, fight scenes, love, betrayal, blackmail, a pure evil villain – I challenge you find one more sinister, an epic, terrifying journey, pain, heartache and at its core survival. Katsa develops from a young, slightly naive woman manipulated by her King, to a strong woman who understands the need for sacrifice for the greater good, and that understands that even her deadly grace cannot protect her from some of the most terrifying things life has to throw at her. You watch Katsa evolve and grow through several revolutions into a more rounded, whole and strong woman.
As this was an audiobook, I must take a moment to comment on the narration. Read by Emma Powell, it was rather nice and quite rare for me to listen due to my reading tastes, to listen to a British narrator and she was great. Powell bought the story and characters to life with her voice.
A superb novel, Cashore’s writing is rich, detailed and captivating. Even if you’re not a fantasy fan I would urge you to pick GRACELING up. An amazing start to a new series, three-dimensional characters that breathe off the page, a beautiful love story, an epic journey and everyone’s favourite battle of good versus evil. Go buy it!
There's nothing like a Christmas book to get you feeling all festive! I always make sure to try and read at least oReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
There's nothing like a Christmas book to get you feeling all festive! I always make sure to try and read at least one each year. This is a book from Harlequin's Intrigue collection, which is one of those books you pick up and pretty much know what you're going to get. A will they, won't they story line and a nice, cosy happy ending.
Two years ago Lara inherited a butchers from her Uncle and fell for the bad boy baker next door Reid. An impulsive and passionate night later, Reid's missing, presumed dead in a fire and Lara is left pregnant with twins.
The book begins two years later. Single mother Lara has grieved for the loss of her children's father and is trying to move on with her life. However, unbeknownst to her Reid is very much alive and far from being a baker, he is in fact an undercover agent responsible for bringing down terrorists.
With a crazy twist of coincidence, Lara is out for her first date since the twins birth, at the same restaurant Reid is meeting an informant. Things spiral out of control and Reid ends up saving Lara's life but his act ends up putting Lara and the twins in danger.
Reid had never meant to let Lara know he was still alive, but when their children are kidnapped they must work together to save them. Reid is quite single-minded, believing that Lara and the boys are better off without him in their lives. But as the chemistry between he and Lara sizzles they both have to admit their feelings for one another.
Admittedly the premise of the book is a little silly and a couple of times I found myself rolling my eyes. It's not really that believable, but if you can embrace the silliness and enjoy the story it's mostly quite a fun read. In fact, it may even give you a bit of a giggle at some of the scenes. Plus, we all like to see a man who believes that love and a family aren't for him get proven wrong!
I was a bit disappointed given the title, that there was not more Christmas in it! I think there were about roughly five or six references. I was looking for lots of festive cheer and maybe a visit from Santa, but I think maybe I'm just a bit crazy about Christmas! :-)
Ok, so this is far from the best romance I've ever read and the storyline is quite implausible. But if you want a fun story with a (slightly) festive theme, then grab a glass of wine and snuggle up....more
I was so looking forward to reading this book. Hooked as soon as I read the back cover. Thankfully 'My Name is Mem9 out of 10 on www.bookchickcity.com
I was so looking forward to reading this book. Hooked as soon as I read the back cover. Thankfully 'My Name is Memory' did not disappoint.
It tells the haunting love story of Daniel and Lucy. For centuries Daniel has lived with a gift. A gift that he calls 'the memory'. He remembers every single one of his past lives right up to his very first in 541AD. He has been poor, he has been wealthy, he has suffered, he has been lucky, he has lived in many different countries and amongst many cultures. But in each of these lives, one thing remains true. He loves Lucy.
This love has consumed Daniel, affecting all of his decisions in nearly all of his lives. However, despite this overriding passion, they have only had two lives in all of these centuries where they were ever had the small chance to be together. The first when Lucy was Sophia, the abused wife of his brother. The second when she was Constance, the nurse who cared for him as a soldier on his death bed in the first World War. Until now their love has been both doomed and unrequited.
One of the most heart wrenching lives for me was when Daniel was a young boy and Lucy an elderly woman. His devotion to her even then unquestionable.
This story begins with Lucy and Daniel in high school. While Lucy finds Daniel fascinating, she has no idea who he is. Daniel sees this life as the first ever where they possibly stand a chance of being together, so desperately tries to be patient and keep his distance. The main story follows Lucy and Daniel through high school and college, but is interspersed with Daniel's fascinating recollections of some of his past lives.
Daniel is utterly compelling throughout the book, and I engaged with his narrative far more than Lucy's at first. But Lucy really comes into her own in the second half of the novel, growing as a character. It is easy to forget of course that why they are of a similar age, Daniel has many years of maturity on her and this is cleverly portrayed. The book builds slowly, layering up the story carefully and with passionate intensity. Because of this it is more about the love story and the relationship between Daniel and Lucy than any true action.
However, in the last 100 pages things take a sinister turn. While his talent is incredibly rare, Daniel is not the only one with 'the memory'. Just when happiness might be in his grasp, and age old enemy comes looking for his ultimate vengeance.
I finished this book with a gasp, incredulous that the the author could leave me that way. I've heard that this book is the first in a trilogy and I desperately hope so, already longing to read the next instalment!
People have drawn comparisons between it and 'The Time Traveller's Wife' which is one of my all time favourite books. There are certainly similarities in the soul-consuming love that both books depict. I would say it you loved the first then you will love 'My Name is Memory' also.
This is a poetic and beautiful love story that will make your heart ache. I loved this book and it has quickly propelled itself into one of my favourite books of the year so far....more
I'm in two minds about this book. At the heart of it is a warm & enj**spoiler alert** Reviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (5 out of 10 on the blog)
I'm in two minds about this book. At the heart of it is a warm & enjoyable love story. But surrounding the story itself were a lot of circumstances that I struggled with.
This book is the thirteenth book in a series about the McKettrick family and within that series the third of a trilogy. The previous two books told the love stories of Austin's brothers Tate and Garrett. I picked up this book knowing I had not read any of the other books in the series, while there were inevitably parts I'd missed out on, I found it easy to pick up.
Austin is an arrogant and sexy rodeo star, but an accident has left his back permanently damaged & he can never ride again. The book opens up with Austin getting drunk in a bar before his two brothers come to rescue him and take him home to the family ranch to recuperate. But things aren't all that they seem at the ranch with cattle going missing and vandalism on the oil rigs. Austin finds himself in danger as he and his brothers try to find to get to bottom of their troubles.
This is where it gets slightly complicated. Tate and Garrett are both engaged to Libby and Julie who are also sisters and their third sister Paige is staying with them while her house is being renovated. Paige is temporarily out of work and also conveniently happens to be a nurse. So Tate and Garrett decide it will be a good idea to hire to help look after Austin. But, to add more complexity to the mix it turns out that Paige and Austin dated seriously in high school before Austin devastatingly broke her heart.
I really had to work at suspending my disbelief at the idea of three brothers falling in love with three sisters. But I tried to put it to the back of my mind and simply enjoy the love story.
Then there were the circumstances of Paige and Austin's past. They had both been very much in love. But, Austin unable to cope with the seriousness of the relationship cheated on Paige, as he didn't know how to tell her what he was feeling. As the book progresses it is very much put upon Paige to get over her past as though the resentment she carries towards Austin is unreasonable. That Austin did the best he could in the circumstances, given their young age & the fact she wanted too much, too fast from the relationship.
Quote: "I didn't know any other way to save either one of us."
I struggled to accept this as a legitimate excuse.
Thirdly was the mystery of the vandalism and violence occurring on the ranch. It added a nice edge of danger to the story which I enjoyed, but I didn't feel that the author went to any great lengths to conceal who the culprit was. When the finale came it was no real surprise as to who was responsible, there was no twist or turn or element of surprise which was disappointing.
Despite all this, if you could disregard the circumstances and the un-mysterious mystery, there was an enjoyable and engaging love story. Austin is charismatic, smouldering with a nice dash of pig-headedness that makes for a great hero. While Paige is intelligent, confident and the type of heroine I would normally engage with.
It could be that I would have enjoyed the book a lot more if I had read the previous two books in the trilogy. Maybe I would have identified better with the McKettrick family & characters. The love story was well written & enjoyable, but there were too many things wrong with the story to make it run smoothly. I have read other books by Linda Lael Miller and thoroughly enjoyed them, but this one unfortunately did not live up to those standards....more
The cover of this book is oddly deceiving. When I first looked at it, I wasn't sureThis review was written for www.bookchickcity.com (rating was 7/10)
The cover of this book is oddly deceiving. When I first looked at it, I wasn't sure if the book would be for me. As it looked a little bit too YA for my taste. How could I be so wrong?
This book is hilarious! Full on, laugh out loud funny. It's like a cross between Harry Potter and Mean Girls meets Sabrina.
Sophie is a witch. Having never met her father, she has been raised by her human mother and has had no magical education. But when one spell too many goes wrong, she is sent to Hecate (Hex) Hall. A reform, boarding school for magical children. She's never even met another witch before, let alone shape-shifters and faeries.
Hex Hall is like a baptism of fire. Firstly she's nearly attacked by a werwolf and then she's roomed with the only vampire and outcast of the school. If that isn't bad enough, there's the beautiful, coven led by Elodie who seem to have it in for her.
Archer Cross is Elodie's boyfriend and let me briefly say *swoon*. Archer is an interestingly complex character and Sophie can't help her feelings for him although she knows nothing can come of it.
Interwoven amidst the magic fun is a great sinister mystery with pupils falling victim to a malevolent and dark force. Suddenly, Sophie needs to face up to family's past as she begins to realise who she really is.
Sophie is a great character and it's easy to engage and go on her journey with her. You find yourself willing her to succeed. I totally loved Jenna, the vampire obsessed with pink! The alone was enough to endear me to her.
This isn't a complex novel, it's an easy read and maybe at times a little predictable. But all the characters are well rounded and engaging. The mystery was tantalising and kept the pages turning and it had a great twist at the end.
A light, fun read that I read in the space of a day. It is undoubtedly aimed at a young adult audience, but this didn't affect my enjoyment at all. I would say it is a book for all ages. The book had a brilliant ending that left me wanting for more. The second book in the series is already on my wish list....more
This is the fourth in a series of spin-off books from the Supernatural TV series. It takesReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (5 out of 10 on the blog)
This is the fourth in a series of spin-off books from the Supernatural TV series. It takes place in the fifth series and is a filler between episodes. The beginning of the book says that the novel takes place after the episode 'Changing Channels' (episode 8 of 22).
I'm a huge fan of the TV show, well Dean alone need I say anymore! But like with Buffy before it, one of my previous spooky TV favourites, I've never really been tempted to read any of the spin-off stories. Which left me wondering what I'd been missing.
It's worth saying that the author has without a doubt assumed the reader has watched the TV show. However, I haven't read any of the previous three books in the series, and didn't feel feel like I'd missed any of the storyline because of this. For those unfamiliar with the show, it follows two brothers, Sam and Dean, who travel about America slaying demons and evil, supernatural beings.
The story is split into three parts. It begins with fallen angel Castiel warning Sam and Dean that the Heart of the Dragon has risen again, then we're quickly transported back forty years to 1969 and the dragon's first rising.
The first part of the books tells the story of Sam and Dean's grandparents Samuel and Deanna (yes really) and their mother Mary, a teenager at the time, who are called to China Town to investigate a slew of supernatural murders and end up facing the Heart of the Dragon. The hippie setting of the story is fun, but I found the first part of this book slow. I didn't really engage with Samuel and Deanna that much and if I'm honest I found Mary quite irritating.
The second section takes place twenty years later when Sam and Dean are just children and their father John, a man obsessed with revenge. He regularly abandons them as he obsessionally hunts demons and fails to come to terms with his wife's death.
It was interesting to get some insight into Sam and Dean's life as children, their strained relationship with their father and the impact this had on them. John is a man consumed with single-minded determination and regularly sacrifices his children's well being to banish both his own and the real life demons. Bobby (another demon hunter and character from the TV series) makes an appearance as the put upon friend and surrogate father to the brothers and I enjoyed seeing this warmer side of him.
Then the book takes us up to the present day and the part you've been waiting for - Sam and Dean's section. While Samuel and Deanna and John went up against the Heart of the Dragon, they only succeed in banishing it, and as it rises again forty years it's up to Sam and Dean to complete what their family have been unable to do and destroy it completely.
There are some genuinely good bits of the story, particularly the Japanese legend and the young Sam and Dean, but a lot of it was quite slow going.
The biggest thing is I felt that the book missed the humour that I love in the TV shows. We all love the relationship between the two brothers and it was very much skimmed over or there was just not enough of it.
All in all I would summarise this book as OK. I didn't love it, but I didn't hate it either. The author tried very hard to recreate the setting of this much loved TV show and while he nearly achieved it, I don't think it quite got there either. ...more
I think it's fair to say that 'Perfect Chemistry' isn't an original story. We've read superb stories of star-crossedReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
I think it's fair to say that 'Perfect Chemistry' isn't an original story. We've read superb stories of star-crossed lovers before. Ultimately in Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet' and of course 'West Side Story'. But this didn't matter to me. In fact, after the first two chapters I was hooked.
Brittany is your high school princess, the girl every other girl wants to be. Beautiful, rich, the head cheerleader and dating one of the hottest guys in school. Raised by a mother obsessed with perfectionism, she knows what it means to create the ultimate image. Wearing the right clothes, going to the right places, not having a hair out of place or a smear in your make-up.
But scratch beneath the surface and you will see her life is far from the perfect image she has created.
Alex is not a guy that most mothers would like their daughters to bring home. Following his now dead father's footsteps he has been lured into gang life as a misguided way to protect his family. Now he's in deep, on the threshold to a spiraling life of crime and violence.
Then one day, their chemistry teacher reassigns everyone alphabetically and much to their distaste Alex and Brittany have been put together as lab partners. Initially sparks fly, and when Alex's fellow gang members bet him he can't bed Brittany, ego gets in the way and before he know it his beloved motorbike as well as his reputation end up on the line.
As Alex begins his mission of seduction, things don't go quite to plan. As he starts to get to know Brittany, he begins to see the girl beneath the veneer. The girl who is fed up of being perfect and the girl who desperately loves and cares for her disabled sister. As he unwittingly begins to fall for her, he begins to question everything in his life and a very small part of him dares to dream.
The story is told with alternating chapters from Brittany and Alex, which gives you insight into each of their feelings and experiences. It grabs you right from the get go and it's one of those books you just can't put down. The chemistry between Alex and Brittany sizzles and the love story is one of those that hits you right in the solar plexus.
Alex is ruggedly handsome, the bad boy that every girl could easily fall for. Brittany is at times naive, but there is something pure and shining about her love for Alex.
This is a well written story about hope, dreams and love. Yes, it is at the core of course a love story, but it also tackles teen issues, the problem of social disparity and the circle of gang life in America. This is a book I would most definitely recommend.
One tiny, tiny thing and I was forewarned about this from a fellow reviewer. I'm not a big fan of the epilogue, it was slightly heavy on the cheese factor.
While this book won't win any awards for originality, I loved it! Alex and Brittany capture both your heart and imagination from the start. I can't wait for the next!
'Killing Kiss' is the story of Gabriele, a Seventeenth Century vampire, and a Manchester University student. It is a dark, and somewhat edgy book.
Gabr'Killing Kiss' is the story of Gabriele, a Seventeenth Century vampire, and a Manchester University student. It is a dark, and somewhat edgy book.
Gabriele is entirely alone in the world since he was accidentally turned into a vampire, and then abandoned by his maker. He lives in the outskirts of society.
To keep his existence under the radar he only allows himself one feed a year. The choosing of each year's victim is an all consuming and important task for Gabriele. He seduces and stalks the woman like the serial killer that he is. That woman always has the same characteristics. She is dark, slim, quiet, reserved and a virgin.
It is very difficult to turn a human into a vampire and no-one knows why one person survives and another dies. So every year Gabriele chooses carefully, and every year devastatingly, she dies. He would know, he has four hundred trophies to remind himself.
This year is unlike any other, he has chosen his prey and has begun stalking her with single minded determination. But, this year something distracts him. A beautiful and curvaceous woman called Lilly, who has every male student on campus panting. Of course she is not Gabriele's type. Gabriele has already chosen the dark haired Carolyn who fits his requirements perfectly.
However, despite hundreds of years of planning and control, Gabriele quickly discovers it only takes one small action to disrupt even the best laid plans. It comes in the shape on a simple spiked drink and suddenly everything changes.
The story is mixed in equal parts with Gabriele or Jay's, as he is known currently, life in the modern day and his reflections of his past. As his thinks about how he became a vampire and his life since. The women he's loved and killed, some even his wives. He takes us on a macabre and occasionally desolate journey.
When I first started the book I struggled to engage with Gabriele. Instead of coming across as a dark, sexy and gothic hero, initially he seems more like a horny, teenage boy. There's something sleazy about his pursuit of the innocent Carolyn that was not only sinister, but made my skin crawl. But on reflection, I think this was perhaps the author's intended effect.
I can't really talk about them without throwing in some spoilers which I'm reluctant to do, but there were a few things in the narrative that made me feel uncomfortable. In particular an unexpected revelation towards the end. But, again even as I think about it, I think this is on purpose. It is meant to set the reader slightly on edge and to break stereotypical moulds. To make this an unusual and deliberately different vampire novel.
This book is deceptively compelling. Like that alcoholic drink you shouldn't like but can't resist having just one more of. It is a purposely different, contemporary horror. And I find I am curious despite myself, to know where the author takes it next.
I thoroughly enjoyed 'The Poison Throne'. The lead character is Wynter. She returns home aReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (7 out of 10 on the blog)
I thoroughly enjoyed 'The Poison Throne'. The lead character is Wynter. She returns home after several years of travelling and succeeding in a man's trade, working as her father's carpentry apprentice. She is looking forward to seeing her childhood friends Prince Alberon, heir to the throne, and Razi the King's bastard son. However, as soon as she and her father arrive at the Kingdom gates it because evident that things have changed in their years of absence, the atmosphere is tense and something is very wrong.
The King, a previously genial and kind man has become a cruel dictator. The King's son and heir, Alberon is missing, declared a traitor, and her dear friend Razi is named the new successor despite his reluctance and public outcry.
The King, unwilling to listen is ruling through fear and violence. The only man he seems to listen to is Wynter's father. But Wynter's father is seriously ill, a condition they must keep secret from the rest of the court.
When Wynter is reconciled with Razi she is introduced to his new companion and best friend Christopher. Aside from his promiscuity, Wynter is suspicious of Christopher and Razi's relationship. Razi's deep, unquestioning trust of Christopher gives Wynter cause for concern.
This is a story of dark secrets and dangerous political games. Amidst violence, fear and games she really doesn't understand Wynter is left with some very difficult decisions. How can she choose between her dying father, her best friend and saving the Kingdom?
The plot of the story is very difficult to explain both because it is very detailed, but also for fear that I may give too much away.
What really makes this book is the characters and their relationships with one another. Wynter's warm and loving relationship with her father, her deep bond with Razi and her confusion and desperation to help those she cares for. Wynter is a determined and brave heroine you cannot help to admire. Each of the characters are complex and rounded. With as many flaws as they have strengths and this is what makes the story so engaging.
One thing to note, is that while I know this book is the first of a trilogy, it is most definitely written as one of three and does not stand-alone on its own. You finish the last page ready to grasp for the next book. It is also advertised as a young adult novel, but despite Wynter being a teenage girl, it reads very much like an adult story.
This book sucks you in with its rich characters and intrigue. The 512 pages whizz by at the speed of a much shorter book. It's not what I would call action packed, the lure of the story is the mystery as to what has caused the darkness that is spreading through the Kingdom, and at the heart of it the love and friendships that fight to survive....more
It's no secret that I have a love of the classics. The Brontës reaching the top of my favourites list. In fact, I diReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
It's no secret that I have a love of the classics. The Brontës reaching the top of my favourites list. In fact, I did my final project for my English Degree on the novels of the three Brontë sisters.
I've seen the trend for horror rewrites in my local bookshop and I've warily avoided them. Odd seeing as I love classics, romance and horror alike, it should have been a great mashing of worlds for me.
So it was with a certain amount of trepidation that I picked up this book to review. Worried that the introduction of zombies would somehow detract from the beauty of the original.
'Jane Slayre' is a somewhat tongue-in-cheek rewrite of 'Jane Eyre' and in many places was almost a recount of the original.
For those of you who haven't read the 'Jane Eyre'. In a quick nutshell, it is the story of orphan Jane who goes to live with her aunt and cousins, the Reeds, a selfish and unkind family who treat her with disdain. Eventually, Mrs. Reed sends Jane to boarding school and she enters into the cruel and barren world of Lockwood Institution. Much of Jane's early life is about suffering and endurance. At eighteen she escapes and finds employment working as a governess for the taciturn, but oddly charismatic Mr. Rochester, with whom she falls in love. However, the course of love does not run smooth and this is a gothic tale with a dark secret. Jane is a tough and beautifully humble woman who more than deserves her happy ending.
This version, of course has some very notable changes. The Reeds are vampires, Lockwood is overrun with Zombies and Rochester's wife is a werewolf. All written in with a sense of fun and a nice amount of delightful ghoulishness.
The author has kept very true to the original text. So much so in fact that I had to pull out my copy of 'Jane Eyre' to compare some passages. The only thing I really noticed is that there have been a few changes to make it more readable for a modern audience. For example:
Original: "You are afraid of me, because I talk like a Sphynx."
'Jane Slayre' edition: "Are you afraid of me?" he asked, his brow arching. "You think me a monster?"
As you can see the affect is cleverly, very subtle.
There are some genuinely amusing moments. The vision of Jane out for a quiet evenings stroll where she whips a stake out from beneath her skirts to slay an unbeknownst vampire did make me chuckle.
The book has been written with obvious deep affection for the classic. But, maybe I'm a purist, but part of me would hate for people to read this version instead, or least before they pick up the original.
'Jane Eyre' is magical and wonderfully dark in its own right. But the darkness in the original is born of human behaviour which in many aspects is more cruel than the acts of the undead.
This is a well written fun rewrite that will entertain horror fans. If you're a fan of the other mash ups then I don't think you'll be disappointed. It just wasn't quite my thing....more
In 'Dark and Disorderly' the world is slightly different. Something has happened, a shift and now the ghosts of theReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com
In 'Dark and Disorderly' the world is slightly different. Something has happened, a shift and now the ghosts of the dead are everywhere, spilling out into the streets and into people's homes.
Lillie is a 'Talent', a person born with a supernatural ability that means she can put the dead to rest. However her gift is controversial, there are groups that believe she isn't in fact putting the souls to rest, but destroying them instead. She is demonised and labelled as a freak, even by her now dead husband.
Lillie's relationship with her husband was strained at best, abusive at its worst. So she can't help but feel somewhat relieved at his unfortunate demise. But when she becomes the prime suspect for his murder things start to get a bit out of control.
The book opens with a bang, the action taking off straight away with the eerie arrival of Lillie's zombie, dead husband intent on killing her. And it doesn't stop from there, the novel is without a doubt action packed, as Lillie is thrown into one adrenalin pulsing scene after another.
Detective John Thresher from the psi-crime division is put in charge of the investigation into Lillie's attack and her husband's death. He's an interesting character with more than a few secrets. There is a nice amount of chemistry bubbling away between him and Lillie which has some great potential for a growing love story. However, I was never quite sure where it was going. They were both hot and cold, trusting and non trusting, and John (Johnny) was such an enigma it was hard to get a grasp on him.
Despite the action, I struggled to get into the book at first. I can't quite put my finger on why, as all of the ingredients of a good urban fantasy book were there.
This book was very much in two halves for me. In the first part I found myself counting the pages a little and it wasn't until the second half that I became fully submerged in the story. The second part is brilliant, page turning, pulse pounding stuff. With a great ending that has more than a few unexpected plot turns.
I think the problem stems from the fact that things weren't always explained as fully as they could have been. For example, there were some fascinating references to mythology and superstitions that were no longer really superstitions, that I wish they had been developed more. Lillie's background and gift were never properly explored. I understand the need to hold back details and dangle the stick for later books in the series, but I wanted just a tiny bit more of that carrot.
'Dark and Disorderly' has a lot of potential for a new urban fantasy series. I really liked the two main characters Lillie and Johnny and the ending was an exciting roller coaster ride. While I do have a few reservations with it, I also find myself interested to see where it goes next and would still recommend it....more
This is the second book in the Dragon Kin series. This time the story is about Fearghus's brother Briec. Briec, also known as 'Briec the Mighty', optiThis is the second book in the Dragon Kin series. This time the story is about Fearghus's brother Briec. Briec, also known as 'Briec the Mighty', optimises arrogance. Out of all of the dragons, he has had the least contact with humans and doesn't really understand them.
Talaith is a strong female character. A Nolwenn witch, she has been bound do the duty of her cruel deity. Which has led her to end up married to, quite frankly a total loser. But when he leads a blood hungry mob to their door intent on burning her at the stake. Well, enough is enough. Although she's not sure how she's going to get herself out of this bind.
Then much to her surprise, she is saved by a silver dragon. All good so far, until the arrogant jerk now proclaims she's his property.
Talaith has a lot of secrets. Even as she begins to secretly like her time with Briec, she knows she cannot stay. There's too much at stake. She's bound to the deity Arzhela and Arzhela has her own agenda. An agenda which Talaith cannot dare fail to play her part in.
As with the first book, this story is absolutely laugh-out-loud funny. I didn't necessarily like Briec all of the time. His arrogance got a little irritating in places. But I did find the incessant banter between Talaith and him amusing. Talaith has an acid tongue and she and Briec appear to love arguing almost more than anything else.
The first few chapters of this book were very good. I loved the rescuing scene. But, after then it hit a little bit of a lull and didn't pick up again until Briec's brothers Gwenvael and Eibhear arrived. It was the antics between the dragon family that made the story for me.
It was great to see Annwyl and her legendary temper again. The scenes with her in were brilliant. She's one of those characters you fall in love despite herself. There was also a fab twist thrown in about her and Fearghus adding continuity to their story from the first novel.
Slight word of caution, this book reaches high on the steam factor. More so than the first in the series.
This is a genuinely funny, paranormal romance.
While I didn't think this book was as good as the first, it was still hugely entertaining. I'm looking forward to reading the promiscuous Gwenvael's story which you are given a fun hint to in the epilogue.
This is a deliciously fun book. Meet Annwyl, brother to Lorcan the cruel and brutal King. A lethal female warrior she leads the rebellion dedicated toThis is a deliciously fun book. Meet Annwyl, brother to Lorcan the cruel and brutal King. A lethal female warrior she leads the rebellion dedicated to ending his reign and has deservedly earned the nickname Annwyl the Bloody. Her temper is infamous, as is her tendency for dismembering and decapitating her enemies. Men are usually afraid of her, let alone consider her as a love interest.
Then one day she finds herself wounded, outnumbered and fighting for her life. Expecting to die, she is suddenly saved...... by a deadly, fire breathing dragon!
Fearghus doesn't bother himself in the petty lives of humans. He likes his solitude living in a cave isolating himself from dragons and humans alike. One day he becomes curious watching a brave woman fight her enemies even with her last breath and surprising even himself decides to saves her. However, the thing is Fearghus also known as Fearghus the Destroyer. He has hidden himself from human existence for seventy years, leaving humans to believe he's dead. So really Fearghus should now be happily eating the woman in order to protect his secret, but can't find it in his heart to do so.
As Annwyl recovers from her injuries in Fearghus's cave much to her consternation she begins to fall in love with the recalcitrant dragon. But in the day Fearghus sends a knight to train her fighting skills. To enable her to gain the strength and skill to defeat her brother once and for all. Annwyl generates feelings she's never experienced before for the knight and falls deeply in lust with him. Leaving her conflicted between her love for the dragon and her lust for the man. Little does she know that they are one and the same.
I couldn't help but love Annwyl, her strength and fire were hugely entertaining. She loses her temper on a whim coming up spitting both rage and knives. Her fearlessness and determination make her endearing as is her passion to defeat her brother's evil reign.
The electricity between Annwyl and Fearghus crackles off the page. As a couple they are perfectly matched and I thoroughly enjoyed the twist and turns of their relationship.
There are some great minor characters that complement the story. From Fearghus's interfering family, to Annwyl's army generals. It's clear we're going to see a lot of these characters again as their stories are told in the subsequent books in the series.
Fearghus is grumpy, funny and ferocious all at the same time. The contrast between the long suffering brother and the warrior create some real laugh out loud moments. As do the tongue-in-cheek jokes about the dragons' tastes for eating humans and terrorising villages.
I liked the fact that Annwyl was an independent and strong woman and her relationship with Fearghus didn't change that. It only served to make her stronger.
This book was a funny, sexy, page turner which I thoroughly enjoyed.
A great fairytale-esque paranormal romance about a dragon and the female warrior who dared to not be afraid of him.
I'd highly recommend it to PNR lovers.
In fact, I think I need to go and search some caves and find a dragon of my own (just don't tell my husband!)
This is the best Carpathian novel that I have read for a while. Of late I've found they'veReviewed for www.bookchickcity.com (7 out of 10 on the blog)
This is the best Carpathian novel that I have read for a while. Of late I've found they've become very repetitive with the characters lacking originality, seeming more like copies of one another. But 'Dark Slayer' really picks up the pace and is more rounded and engaging.
If you have not read any of Christine Feehan's Carpathian books, they are about a race of people - Carpathians - a paranormal species, think good vampires. The men live forever seeing only in black and white, unable to feel emotion until they find their 'lifemate', the other half of their souls. The Carpathian men must bind themselves forever to their lifemate in order to see in colour and restore their emotions and survive. The bond is a very special one, the women are coveted and protected and the men usual epitomise the meaning of alpha male. Without their lifemate, the temptation to turn evil is great, when they cannot take it anymore, the men often decide to meet the dawn or turn and become vampires.
Ivory has had a brutal life. Betrayed and tortured it took her centuries to recover from her horrendous injuries. Ever since then she has lived alone, avoiding other members of her species, most of whom believe her to be dead. She has trained herself to become a powerful and feared slayer of vampires and a talented Mage. Her mission to kill the terrifying vampire Xavier.
Razvan has been Xavier's prisoner for years, forced to commit horrific crimes against his family and against his will, he has been tortured beyond endurance. The Carpathian race believe him turned, a vampire, a betrayer and evil.
When Razvan manages to escape he thinks only to meet the sun and end his painful existence. But, he ends up at Ivory's home. As soon as Ivory sees him she knows he is her lifemate and despite her reluctance she knows she must save him.
Ivory and Razvan are very different characters than we have previously seen in this series. Ivory is the stronger warrior of the two and must teach Razvan to fight and survive. This turns the relationship on its head and dampens down the usual alpha-maleness. Razvan lacks the massive ego that the Carpathian males normally have, and lets Ivory be who she is, rather than dictating to her. Making them more like partners which is sometimes not quite the case in some of the other books. This adds more integrity and strength to their relationship.
The action scenes are excellent and it was these pages the sucked me in. I had a strong picture of Ivory as she fought and I loved her interaction with her pack of wolves. We also see a lot of characters from previous books. As a big fan of Gregori, it was great to see him and Savannah again.
The one thing I do struggle with in Feehan's books is her fifteen page love scenes. I find them boring and repetitive, so often skip over them until we're back to the main story. Some of the more recent books have tended to be scene after scene of them. But this book has really stepped up the story, leaving behind a lot of that repetition.
One of the best Carpathian books for a while, there's some great story continuity between each of them now and you're under no illusion that this is a race fighting for survival. There's something about those tough Carpathian males that just sucks me in....more
For the first time in her life, Beth Ackerley has options. Now a wealthy widow, thanks to the kind inheritance of the late Mrs. Barrington she can doFor the first time in her life, Beth Ackerley has options. Now a wealthy widow, thanks to the kind inheritance of the late Mrs. Barrington she can do whatever she chooses. With dreams of relaxing, travelling and learning to paint. But wealth doesn't bring friendship and lonely, Beth finds herself engaged to Sir Lyndon Mather.
Lord Ian Mackenzie is the black sheep of the Mackenzie family. Put in an asylum as a young boy, rescued by his brother years later after his father's death, he struggles to fit into society. While his brothers care and look after him, they do not understand him.
Ian has an obsession with Ming bowls. He collects and revers them and sometimes when he sees a new one that is not yet in his collection he doesn't own, he just has to have it. One day purchasing a new piece from the sycophantic and quite deceptively unpleasant Sir Lyndon Mather, he becomes intrigued when Sir Lyndon boasts about his recent lucky engagement to a wealthy widow. Ian decides to investigate, should the widow deserve it he decides he will slip her a note to warn her of the less than savoury nature of her future husband.
But, Ian is taken aback when he meets Beth and finds her as exquisite as one of his Ming bowls. He knows that not only does he have to save her, he has to have her.
Unfortunately Ian struggles to put his past behind him. Not only is he haunted by terrible nightmares, but years ago, after he was released from the asylum a terrible incident happened and a woman was murdered. His brothers aren't sure if Ian might have been the killer, but protect him never the less. And Ian with his frequent rages and black outs isn't even sure himself. Now another woman has been murdered and Inspector Javert, who has a bit of grudge against the somewhat wild Mackenzies, is convinced Ian is the killer and will not give up until he is convicted.
Ian is a very unusual, but fantastic hero. A combination of handsomeness, intelligence, bravery with a nice amount of vulnerability thrown in. I'd read a couple of reviews on this book before I bought it and the general consensus is that he has autism and I would have to agree.
I liked Beth for her honesty, determination and directness. She has had a tough past, but it has just made her kind and determined to make the most out of her life. This book has a nice twist in that to a certain extent it is up to the heroine to rescue the hero.
Warning despite the complex hero, this book is on the red hot side of steamy. I wish the author had pulled it back just a touch as it got a little bit bawdy at times. It made the difference for me between and 7 and a 8 out of 10.
We were also given an intriguing introduction to Ian's brothers. In particular Mac and his estranged wife Isabella. Which as I finished this book left me seriously looking forward to reading their story next.
This is a refreshingly, warm romance. I loved the uniqueness of the male lead who is vulnerable yet strong all at the same time. His quirks and idiosyncrasies make him all the more endearing. A great read.