The Quick and the Undead had so much potential that it was bursting at the seams with it. Unique story? Yes. Hot men? Yes. A historical feel set in thThe Quick and the Undead had so much potential that it was bursting at the seams with it. Unique story? Yes. Hot men? Yes. A historical feel set in the modern world? Yes. Yet, by the end of it I was left wanting so much more.
Travel blogger Riley has come to Tombstone to live in the past. The brochure promises gun-slinging outlaws, saloons and rustic charm. What it doesn't advertise is the establishment is run by vampires...ten of them. Among them is Sheriff Boone and from the first moment she sees him, Riley is hooked. Even her rational, I've been burned by a man side, can't hold out. Yet that attraction she claims she feels fell completely flat with me. She's supposedly the target of a crazed killer but nothing really happens to her. She's attacked once and then sequestered into hiding. The threat was paper thin and definitely not worthy of the set up in the blurb.
Riley spends a great deal of the book lamenting on her stalking ex boyfriend but he never appears. Why spend so much time on something you're not going to follow through with? I would have been just as content to just have her mention it in passing that he was a jerk and then move on. It added nothing to the story that he was a stalker....who never actually stalked.
Most of all...I was bored. Very bored. With no heat and no action I was left with nothing but deadend conversation. If this series continues I doubt I will continue with it.
I give The Quick and the Undead by Kimberly Raye 2 stars
Previously I have adored anything I've picked up by Katie Porter but ultimately I felt a bit let down by Own.
Katsu and Evan have a ra**Short Review**
Previously I have adored anything I've picked up by Katie Porter but ultimately I felt a bit let down by Own.
Katsu and Evan have a rather emotional history. As teenagers they loved with everything they had in them, until the time came for Evan to leave and join an elite group of soldiers. Wanting to shield Katsu from the worry of his lengthy missions, he broke off the relationship and disappeared. A devastated Katsu tried to pick up the pieces and move on yet her anger kept her from ever truly finding closure.
Years later when a mission goes wrong and her father ends up in the hospital Evan shows back up determined to keep her safe while the team figures out who is behind the attack. Katsu is resistant to except any help from Evan because her anger and pride won't allow it. Though her body still yearns for his touch these two fight it continually. In the end I never really felt their connection passed the surface. The D/s aspect didn't feel genuine and there were a few times it even felt a bit degrading.
There was a lot of work put into the threat to Katsu yet when the time came for resolution it was all second hand information. I wanted something to happen in regards to her safety. I wanted a bit of action. I didn't get any. Even leaves her secured, goes and does his job and then comes back to enlighten her on what happened.
Own had all the wonderful components I look for in an erotic romance but I don't think the execution was perfected.
I love checking in with past characters and Schooled gave me exactly what I was looking for as we wait for book 3 due out in March 2015!
Ronin and AmerI love checking in with past characters and Schooled gave me exactly what I was looking for as we wait for book 3 due out in March 2015!
Ronin and Amery have married and are blissfully happy in their union. When it comes time for Ronin to go back home to Japan to continue his training he whisks Amery with him as a sort of delayed and extended honeymoon. The training and its commitments take much of his time, ultimately leaving Amery to fend for herself in a foreign country whose language she does not speak. She relishes the alone time she gets to spend with Ronin but his exhaustion from training often leaves him distant and moody.
These two definitely were made for each other. Ronin and Amery together is sheer perfection. I love how they both have grown as characters since I first encountered them in Unbound (book 1). Amery does a much better job of communicating her grievances to Ronin while still understanding his need to please his sensei. Once Ronin is aware of the strain this trip seems to be putting on his new marriage he does everything within his power to ease Amery’s mind by showing her over and over how much he truly cares for her.
The rope play is still integral to the flow of the book but I’d say that just the connection and coupling of these two is what did it for me in Schooled. Amery really puts herself out there for Ronin and he reciprocates by taking her places she never dreamed about. James paints the scenes so perfectly that I have to wonder if she’s been where her characters have been. I could almost smell the blossoms on the trees that she describes with ease.
You need to read these in order to truly get the growth and emotion James has woven into this series. It’s simply amazing and I cannot wait for book 3! I just wish it would have been longer so I didn’t have to say goodbye as soon.
After finishing this book in one sitting, yes I sat on my ass for HOURS to finish it, I must say that overall I was very impressed with the debut bookAfter finishing this book in one sitting, yes I sat on my ass for HOURS to finish it, I must say that overall I was very impressed with the debut book by Haviland and her introduction to the mafia world.
Twenty-four year old Eva has just become an orphan with the untimely death of her mother. Finishing up her college experience for no other reason than to make her late mother proud, Eva graduates and immediately accepts a position in a large corporation even though the job isn’t really up to the standards of her MBA credentials. Coupled with the man she just met who turns her on like no other man ever has, Eva is hoping this fresh start will be exactly what she needs. A string of close calls has her diving into her mystery mans arms, and surprising herself with how much it feels like it’s the only place she’s ever meant to be.
Leaving his life as an up and coming mafia Don years before, Gabriel has stayed out of the family business in nearly all ways. When he’s asked by a highly influential man, and friend to watch over the daughter no one ever knew he had, Gabriel is pulled back into the dark world. Eva’s beauty astounds him and her fiery nature screams of a family lineage she didn’t even know she had. But the woman has a target painted on her back and several big players are coming for her. Including Gabriel’s own brother Stefano who has had a thirst for blood since Gabriel’s hand in his girlfriends death. Protecting her with his life started out as a job but has quickly become more important that his next breath. Which he’ll gladly give if someone tries to take the woman he now considers his.
As a debut book and the first in a series, there were definite things that worked with A Love of Vengeance and a few things that fell flat. There is a ton of back ground and set up which I think weighed down the story just a bit. This is a very complex story line and there are a TON of characters, which at times can be daunting to remember them all. It would benefit to have a glossary of characters in the front or back to help readers keep everyone straight. POV switches a lot, which is nice because I like to get information from both the hero and the heroine…..but, it also switches into POV of another character only for the end result of setting up the next book. It pulled me out of the story that should have focused solely on Gabriel and Eva.
I love love love that the series is about the mafia! It takes the ‘band of brothers” trope to a level I’ve not read before and gives the men a certain air of fearlessness about them. They aren’t good guys or bad guys, only existing in the gray areas in between. Fiercely loyal and yet able to justify a means to an end. They have no problem taking anyone out who dare hurts someone they love and they have no sympathy for anyone who hurts women or children. Their code of ethics is unrivaled, even if most people don’t understand their laws.
Eva is unlike the women Gabriel has had in the past. They have an instant connection that he can’t explain. She also spends a large amount of time pissing him off. She does some stupid things, even for someone not acquainted with the mafia lifestyle but at 24 yrs old, she’s young enough for me to forgive her I guess. I enjoyed their back and forth banter and the constant strain to control himself when Gabriel would get fed up with her or end up feeling emotions he was unaccustomed to. Eva does a good job of holding her own in the face of some serious revelations and it didn’t feel like the author made light of her situation. Though I will admit that a 24 yr old woman calling a man she’d believed had abandoned her as a baby “daddy” was a bit to sugary sweet for me. Gabriel’s growth as a character was spot on as he dealt with guilt over becoming involved with the daughter of someone he highly respects and drawing her further into a world she didn’t understand. His full circle return to something he had run from years before made sense since he now had something he was willing to protect by any means necessary.
Haviland does a good job of getting the story across but she tends to be a bit long winded, and at times repetitive. She mentioned Ava’s black hair a bunch of different ways throughout the book….midnight hair, onyx hair, jet hair, darkest of waves, obsidian waterfall, shiny oil slick… We get it. Her hair is black. Let’s move on.
The suspense was well done and built appropriately as the book progressed along with the sexual tension. Sure it was a bit predictable, esp since readers found out early on the true story of the mix up between Stefano and Gabriel, but I still found myself eagerly reading along and waiting to find out who was really behind some of the bodies left in Gabriel’s past.
I will be anticipating book two, due in March 2015. As the series progresses and Haviland settles into the writing I have no doubt that the things I found fault with in the debut will be ironed out as she becomes more seasoned.
Best line from the book:
Quan shrugged. “That bruise on her face from a fist?” Gabriel worked his jaw. “I won’t know until she tells me. But if it is, someone’s going to wish their old man had pulled out.”
I give A Love of Vengeance by Nancy Haviland 4 stars!...more
Monica Burns has once again gotten me to read and love a historical romance! Forever Mine is a phenomenally written story of a love that surpasses theMonica Burns has once again gotten me to read and love a historical romance! Forever Mine is a phenomenally written story of a love that surpasses the barriers of time.
The story in the past:
When Victoria walked into an art gallery while on vacation the last thing she expected was to end up in a coma because of a tragic accident. Yet when she awakens she finds herself not in the present but instead in the past and looking exactly like the Earl of Guildford’s missing wife. A wife who for all intents and purposes is a heinous bitch to everyone she meets. Even though Victoria is adamant she is not his wife, Nicholas finds that hard to believe. Understandably. Yet even he has to admit that the more he gets to know this woman the more drastic the change in her personality seems to be. This woman is kind, thoughtful and more than willing to admit her mistakes. Something his wife Vicki would never do. His need to keep her at a distance rules him for much of the first half of the book. It’s not until danger to her presents itself, both physically and health wise, that he admits his growing feelings for her.
The story in the present:
From the moment she walked into the gallery he was transfixed. The gallery owner, Nicholas, found himself unwilling to part with the woman who seems strangely familiar even though they just met moments before an explosion decimated his family gallery. He stands vigil by the womans side for days while she lays in a coma, fighting for her life. His sister is convinced that the similarities between the mystery woman and the painting of the Earl of Guildford’s wife that Nicholas has always refused to part with, can be no coincidence. Faced with the Countess of Guildford’s personal journals, Nicholas finds that he’s slowly starting to believe his sisters tales of reincarnation. But what if this woman never wakes up? Is he doomed to forever be looking for the woman who seems to be the other half of his soul?
I find this book hard to review because explaining it can get a bit trying. However, this book was so so good that I can’t urge you enough to pick it up for yourself. Forever Mine jumps between past/present and POV quite frequently yet Burns does it in a way that will enrapture you and confusion will be the last thing on your mind. This book had some of the best sex scenes I’ve ever read as well. They were….wow, so hot. Victoria and Nicholas together just worked so well. Her fiery spirit and modern day lingo in a time where women just didn’t act that way made me love her even more.
At the end I cried ugly, gut-wrenching tears which I rarely do. The emotional last few chapters bled through my Kindle and directly into my soul. Monica Burns has written something truly magical. Forever Mine surpassed my expectations by miles and then kept on going.
I give Forever Mine by Monica Burns 5 stars!...more
Wow. Just…wow…I’m incredibly impressed by “new to me” author Monica Murphy and her ability to turn a story around. Holy moly. This book was amazeballs and then some!
Ryder McKay is an awful human being. He’s sadistic, conniving and will stop at nothing to get ahead in life. If that means seducing and shattering Violet Fowler, heir to a cosmetic empire, then so be it. She’s an easy target. Naive, fragile and needy. With the help of his *for lack of a better term* friend, they’ll turn her world upside down and rise to the top of that corporate ladder where everything they’ve ever wanted awaits them. Power. Money.
Violet Fowler thought she had everything she wanted. When her world comes crashing down around her the mysterious Ryder is there to pick up the pieces. She’s not stupid, she knows he’s probably using her to get ahead, just like her ex, but she finds herself unwilling to stop him. He ignites something in her that no man ever has and Violet is excited at the change in herself. And in those rare moments he allows her to breach his impenetrable walls, she sees the man he could be and she’s willing to fight for it. No matter the cost.
Ok, so, here’s the thing….I spent a good 100 pages of this book HATING Ryder. Like, I wanted Violet to rip his balls from his body and shove them down his throat. He was horrible. Downright mean. Unfeeling. You name it, he was it. I hated him. I thought Murphy would never get me on board with this awful man as the hero. For a while I stuck to my guns. Shaking my head at his actions while reveling in the suppose-ed “fragile” sisters quiet strength and drive. Violet surprised me time and time again and that’s what kept me reading. I wanted to see her triumph and perhaps slay this man who was so intent on taking her down for his personal gain. His involvement with his “friend” Pilar kept me seeing red. Her bitchiness was off the charts. She was definitely worse than him and I kinda felt like she won in the end… I understand feeling like you owe someone, but to allow yourself to be maneuvered for years, well that just makes you appear weak willed. And that’s what I thought of Ryder. He was weak. It’s safe to say I hated him with the heat of a million suns.
Then something extraordinary started to happen….I started to “get” Ryder. I even felt sad for him. His conflicting emotions and growing need for Violet was changing him. Thank GOD. He felt indebted to Pilar and because of his rough start in life, needed to prove himself worthy. To himself. His conscience, which had been silent for so long, flares back up about the same time his heart actually unthaws. But he’s stuck. Stuck in a plan he really doesn’t want to follow through with now that he knows Violet for who she really is.
Owning Violet is a spectacular book that had me constantly in its grasps from beginning to end. Angsty, twisty and emotionally draining by the end I wanted redemption. Redemption for a man who didn’t think he deserved it but who was awakened by a fiery beauty that stunned him again and again. The sex is off the hook hot…*fans self*…and plentiful. Murphy definitely knows how to light the fire! I cannot wait for book two out in March 2015! This one goes straight to my keeper shelf!
Another exciting romantic suspense from Cynthia Eden! Though loosely tied together with book four, Mine To Have can be read as a standalone very easilAnother exciting romantic suspense from Cynthia Eden! Though loosely tied together with book four, Mine To Have can be read as a standalone very easily. Since I love them so much I highly recommend reading them all. Eden’s crisp writing style makes her alpha males jump right off the page and into your life. No one does alphas with quite so much demand than Cynthia.
In Mine To Have Saxon Black is trying everything he can to get out of the FBI undercover life. One last job and then he’s free to move on to the life he’s been secretly building in the wings. Save one girl then he’s done. Except from the moment he storms into the back room of a shady operation and locks sights with Elizabeth, he knows something is different. She’s different.
Elizabeth has no idea why she’s suddenly the target of bloodthirsty killers, but having Saxon near by makes her feel protected. The attraction she feels toward him confuses her and yet she can’t get enough of him. She may be safe from those hot on her trail but who is going to protect her from Saxon?
Typical of an Eden romance, the suspense continues to ratchet tighter as the book progresses both physically and emotionally. Elizabeth and Saxon work well together for two people who are seemingly in different worlds on paper. They shouldn’t work. Yet the attraction is palpable to the point of explosion. Elizabeth adapts well to the changing roles in her life with believable ease. I think having Saxon by her side constantly helped lessen her anxiety giving her a vocal point instead. With no family ties it made it easier for her to leave while also giving Eden the opportunity to further her back story on the car wreck that killed her parents.
I loved how Eden changes the game about half way through the book by killing off one character but in the process allowing another to gain momentum. It was definitely a clever twist on a story line that many romantic suspense books follow. This allowed the reader to see Saxon in two very different roles, though he never loses his protector status. The ruthless FBI agent and the elusive high end business owner. The worlds completely different with the central commonality being Elizabeth. Her ability to see him for who he truly is behind the many masks he’s had to wear makes her someone he’s unwilling to let disappear from any of his undercover lives.
The brotherly aspect between Saxon and Victor was well done and gave Eden a great opportunity to set the scene for the next book. Working together since they were street rats (along with our heroine from the last book, Jasmine) they have each others backs no matter what. Victor often plays the role of bad guy for the common good which makes him a character I’ve come to both enjoy and loathe. He shows moments of genuine gentleness which he quickly replaces with cold impassiveness. Everything he does has an endgame but he’s the only one privy to that information. He’s a maneuver-er working behind the scenes. I’m looking forward to the woman who is bound to shatter his world. Because I’m sadistic like that. :)
Mine To Have is a romantic suspense not to be missed! Eden delivers lightning fast action scenes and heart stopping eroticism that had me on edge the entire book! Full of twists and surprises from every angle, I whole-heartedly recommend this one!
I give Mine To Have by Cynthia Eden 4.75 stars!...more