Absolutely loved this one. The writing was excellent, the characters were dynamic and like-/hateable (respectively), the situations and emotions reali...moreAbsolutely loved this one. The writing was excellent, the characters were dynamic and like-/hateable (respectively), the situations and emotions realistic, and the love oh so sweet. I was riding the highs and lows the whole time. So looking forward to Julia's book! (less)
This book is incredible! My favorite book in the series. The perfect intense, high octane, action-packed ending to The Artists Trilogy. Get ready, rea...moreThis book is incredible! My favorite book in the series. The perfect intense, high octane, action-packed ending to The Artists Trilogy. Get ready, readers. This book will have you hooked from start to finish; gasping, laughing, crying, yelling, possibly throwing things. I don't know how Karina does it, but she has blown the lid off of this shit. I am in awe... (less)
And With Madness Comes the Light (AWMCL) is the perfect book to hold you over until Come Alive, the nex...moreRead more reviews like this at The Book Asylum.
And With Madness Comes the Light (AWMCL) is the perfect book to hold you over until Come Alive, the next book in the Experiment in Terror series, comes out in June. It is the answer to all your Dex Foray withdrawals, which I seem to have continuous bouts of. That's normal, right? Maybe that's because Dex Foray is my all time favorite book boyfriend, and when you read as much as I do, that's saying A LOT! Until I read AWMCL, I really didn't think it was possible to love Dex any more than I already did. But, much to my utter delight, Karina Halle wrote her ass off again, as usual, obviously, and I fell a little more in love with him.
If you've read the Experiment in Terror series you know all about Perry's dark days that began at the end of Lying Season. What you don't know, but have been dying to find out about, I'm sure, is how Dex handled the separation. Well, wonder no more because AWMCL answers all your questions and brings Dex's pain, heartbreak, and regret into perfect clarity. I won't lie to you, AWMCL is pretty heavy. Although Dex's signature sarcasm, wit, and dry humor are still present, there's also a metaphorical black cloud that hovers over him at all times. It's intense. When our two favorite ghost hunters are finally reunited, the stakes are, as you know, higher than ever. Glimpsing the situation from Dex's perspective was staggering. The emotion I felt during Lying Season the first time around was jarring enough, but a whole new level of depth was added when I read it from Dex's point of view. I was totally thrown and more than a little emotional. Just make sure you have a box of tissues handy. Not sayin' I needed them. Not sayin' I didn't. I'm just sayin'... have them on standby.
Thanks again to Karina for writing an amazing novella to tide over her obsessive fans until Come Alive comes out. Oh, and did you know that Come Alive is written entirely from Dex's perspective too? Can this series get any better? I think not. Pick up AWMCL today and don't be ashamed of the love you feel for this fictional guy. It's hard not to love him.
"Perry was my light. I didn't know it at the time, but I know it now. And in her light, I lost the madness. It only came back when she left."(less)
Ever have so many books to choose from you just can’t decide what to read? Everything just sounds so go...moreRead more reviews like this at The Book Asylum.
Ever have so many books to choose from you just can’t decide what to read? Everything just sounds so good and you've got so many amazing recommendations you don’t know where to start! The other night was one of those nights. So, I did what any overwhelmed reader would do and asked my friend to choose for me. Natasha at Natasha is a Book Junkie kindly chose The Edge of Never for me. We've both heard great things and interestingly enough I had just downloaded it earlier in the day. So, I kindly thanked her and dove in. Oh. My. God! This book... Whoa…
The story is told from the alternating perspectives of the two main characters – Camryn Bennett and Andrew Parrish. Camryn has had a rough go of it over the last year or so. Her boyfriend and first love passed away, her brother’s in jail, her father’s gone… Depressed would be a bit of an understatement.
"Those girls at school had no idea what it really means to be depressed. It's not only about sadness. In truth, sadness really has little to do with it. Depression is pain in its purest form and I would do anything to be able to feel an emotion again. Any emotion at all. Pain hurts, but pain that's so powerful that you can't feel anything anymore, that's when you start to feel like you're going crazy." - Camryn
After an unfortunate incident with her best friend’s boyfriend she also loses her best friend. Now isolated and fed up with the monotony of an ordinary life, Camryn buys a bus ticket on impulse. A baked potato leads her toward Idaho and the story begins to unfold. Andrew Parrish hops on the bus midway through Cam’s trip and he immediately notices her snarky attitude. He’s an independent thinker with a quick wit and brutally honest, live life to the fullest attitude.
"Live in the moment," he says as if making a serious point, "where everything is just right, take your time and limit your bad memories and you'll get wherever it is you're going a lot faster and with less bumps in the road along the way." - Andrew
Andrew’s dad is dying and he needed time to think, so he hopped a bus from Texas to Wyoming. Fate brought them together and their relationship builds gradually, along with your investment in the two of them. The question is, will fate tear them apart?
These characters are absolutely wonderful! Both are strong, yet vulnerable in different ways. Camryn is spunky, tough, and so funny. She’s been down, she’s been out, but who wouldn't be after all the curve balls life has thrown her way? The thing I loved most about her was that despite the crappy hand she’s been dealt, she never pities herself. She just realizes she needs more than what she has at home in North Carolina and she's willing to take a chance to find it.
"The truth is, we all have problems; we all go through hardships and pain, and my pain is paradise compared to a lot of people's and I really have no right to whine at all. - Camryn
Her feelings and motives behind this trip were obvious to me. Andrew, on the other hand is a bit of a mystery. Reading from his perspective is exhilarating because he is always so present, so in the moment. He has this very direct way about him and is able to draw Camryn out in a way she’s never experienced before. The thing is the whole time you’re reading, you feel this undercurrent of unrest with him in particular. It’s like something’s missing and you just can’t put your finger on what it is. You don't know what you don't know. When you finally do know what you didn't know, it’s too late to turn back. You’re right there in the throes of emotion and heartbreak alongside Andrew and Camryn. You won’t even know how to get back to a time when your heart and your head were safe. Oh yes, Andrew and Camryn will have you laughing (Wal-mart scene anyone?), they will have you reflecting, they will leave you breathless, they will have you crying. It’s just so easy to fall for these two.
If their amazing banter and heartwarming moments aren't enough for you, the sex scenes in this book are off the hook. Seriously! Don’t be surprised if you need to take a break after reading some of these scenes. There’s no shame in a cold shower every now and again. Just sayin’. The chemistry between these two characters was absolutely undeniable. There were a few times I didn't know if this was about to turn into Fifty Shades or what. In typical Andrew fashion, he was completely forward with his views, wants, and needs in the sex department. It kind of took me off guard…in the very best of ways! Believe me, you will not be disappointed.
The Edge of Never is a funny, and extremely emotional journey into love. Camryn and Andrew remind us to live life to the fullest, say what you mean to say, and to always dream out loud. Their story reminds us that sometimes we take the time we have for granted. In the end, the most beautiful thing about this book was that Camryn and Andrew saved each other. They brought life and happiness to each other’s lives that didn't exist before they met. They remind us that sometimes we’re stronger together than we could ever be apart…
"THE HEART ALWAYS WINS out over the mind. The heart, although reckless and suicidal and a masochist all on its own, always gets its way."
If you are looking for a funny, romantic read with heart-warming characters and a wonderful character-driven plotline, The Edge of Never is the book you’ll want to move to the top of your to-read list. It is a stay up all night to finish it page turner that will leave you happy and reflecting for days after you’re done reading. I’ve heard people talk about how they get jealous of people that are reading a book for the first time. I never really understood what they meant…until I read The Edge of Never. Buy it. Read it. Love it. Let me know what you think... (less)
I, like other readers, could not stop laughing throughout this book. I mean, right from the start you'r...moreRead this and other reviews at The Book Asylum.
I, like other readers, could not stop laughing throughout this book. I mean, right from the start you're pulled in and doubled over laughing at the things Claire, our female narrator, thinks and says. I've always been cautious about reading "funny" books. In my opinion, comedy is rarely done well and often times I finish something more disappointed than not. So I tend to stay away from said "funny" books. When I saw the rave reviews, realized that it was funny and a romance I just HAD to check it out. I am so glad I did! I read it in two days and couldn't wait to finish it.
The characters are real, gritty, crude human beings that you'd probably want to hang out and party with - I know I would. Carter is the ideal guy and little Gavin is a scene stealer. Scratch that, THE scene stealer. There was something very endearing about each character and I am looking forward to seeing all of them again in the next book.
My only reason for giving four stars instead of five is because the final third of the story kind of felt like a completely different book with the same characters. The focus shifted and the romance went into hyperdrive and seemed to overshadow everything else. Don't get me wrong, the scenes are super steamy and you're going to love them...it just felt a little disjointed to me. Additionally, the lack of conflict in this portion left me feeling happy for the characters, but a bit unsatisfied. I guess I just wanted a little more drama toward the end. (view spoiler)[I thought there was some potential there with Tasha, but alas it was not to be... Maybe in the next book? (hide spoiler)]
I have already recommended 'Seduction and Snacks' to everyone in my office and most of my bookworm friends and will continue to do so. If you like a good laugh and are a sucker for romance/love stories no doubt about it you'll love this book! Buy it. Read it. Love it! ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Ever read a book that is so damn good you don't even want to stop reading for a bathroom break? The char...moreSee more reviews like this at The Book Asylum!
Ever read a book that is so damn good you don't even want to stop reading for a bathroom break? The characters are just so real to you, the events unfolding so engaging you can’t bear to walk out of that world even for two seconds? If you’ve ever read Karina Halle’s Experiment in Terror series, you’ll know EXACTLY what I mean. They’re the type of books you’ll forgo eating for. They’re the type of books that, when the threat of interruption occurs, may or may not cause violent outbursts. They’re the type of books that you take to the bathroom. There I said it. I take these books to the bathroom with me because I am unable to put them down. And I’m not ashamed.
Into the Hollow is Karina’s 6th full book in the Experiment in Terror series. The story picks up right where we last left our main character and narrator, Perry Palomino. Let’s face it; Perry had a rough time of it in On Demon Wings (book 5). She is SO not okay as this book begins. She is facing parents that think she’s a head case, an annoying frenemy/former love interest that just won’t leave her and her family alone, a heart that she’s trying to put back together after being blasted to pieces, and major trust issues with Dex – said heartbreaker who happened to save her life in the last book.
“…when it came to my feelings, when I couldn’t figure out what they even were, that’s when I was really scared.”
All in all, Perry’s having one hell of a time figuring out what’s next. Thankfully, her decision was one I was happy with and one that leads her and Dex on an assignment seeking out Sasquatch in the middle of the Canadian Rockies.
“I had been to many remote places in my life. D’Arcy Island, Red Fox, but none of them felt as far away and isolated as this place did. It didn’t even have a freaking name that I knew of; we were just in some valley in the Canadian Rockies.”
I’m not going to get into the details of the plotline. You’ll just have to read the book to find out how everything goes down. Suffice it to say that it is full of heart-pounding action, steamy sex scenes (some of THE BEST I’ve ever read), and chill-inducing situations that will have you leaving your light on as you fall asleep. Excited yet? Well, you should be!
These characters are some of, if not my absolute favorites EVER. They are some of the most realistic, dynamic, perfectly flawed human beings (imaginary friends) I’ve read. They’re the type of people you want to go have a drink with. Scratch that - several drinks with. The dynamic between them has always been great and that’s true in this book as well. Know what else is true? NO ONE does one liners like Dex Foray!
“Do you really think you’ll win me over by having sex with me?” He scratched at the side of his chin. “Well, they say the way to a woman’s heart is through her vagina.”
“How old are you again? Twelve?” He grinned, teeth white as the snow he had freshly gathered. “Old enough to make you come, young enough to make you hate me for it.”
I have always loved Dex, he's smart, witty, unabashedly sexy and crude. But watching him grow into the character he has become in On Demon Wings and Into The Hollow has far exceeded my expectations for him. He was decidedly Dex in this book, but also showed a vulnerable side that we rarely see from him.
“I love you, Perry,” he whispered, mouth moving in my hair. “I love you so fucking much. And I’m losing myself. I’m losing myself to you and I don’t care anymore because there’s never been a better feeling in the whole fucking world. I love you. Too much. Always.”
And just when you think you can't love him anymore, you learn about his tattoo...swoon…
Perry - poor Perry. As I said, she is still reeling from the experiences of the last two books. She seems more lost than ever now and unwilling to risk losing herself again. The trials she’s endured have hardened her and she too reveals a side that shocked me to the core early on in the storyline. She's trying to cope with everything, but she has an edge to her now that wasn’t really there in previous books.
“I just wanted things to go back to the way it was. When he could touch me and it didn’t feel wrong. When I could like the things he said or the way he looked without hating myself for it.”
This edge, this anger is always lying in wait just below her seemingly calm surface. Perry would cut a bitch in this book, no doubt. She has become this take no prisoners kind of gal. I like it, but it also scared me a little. I don’t want her to altogether lose that sweet side she has.
As for other characters, Into the Hollow has a bad guy that you’ll love to hate and an unsuspecting character twist that could cost Dex and Perry their lives… We don’t get to see too much of Ada or Maximus in this installment. That wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, as Maximus can be a little much for me at times, but after reading Old Blood (book 5.5) I am dying to know more about him and his motives.
When it comes to writing, Karina Halle speaks to me. Directly. I swear, it’s like we’re having a little conversation over coffee and she’s telling me the best story I’ve ever heard. Her writing is expressive without being dramatic, beautifully descriptive without being overdone, and intelligent and witty without being pretentious. Here’s what I’m talking about…
"His eyes were brown and clear, brow set in a determined fashion. He was wearing his black cargo jacket, hands thrust deep in his pockets and collar turned up against the cold. The newsboy cap perched on his head gave him an air of unique distinction though his face remained scruffy with a day’s old stubble.”
“The pause amplified. If anticipation was a breathing, living thing, it would have popped out the window and made a run for it.”
Luckily, her writing is like that in all of her books – not just Into the Hollow. She is very consistent and stays true to her characters and her stories, which I really respect.
Into the Hollow will leave all you Dex & Perry fans completely satisfied, if not a little scared and nervous over the future of their relationship. They have a lot to work through in this book, but you’ll enjoy every second of watching them try to do just that. You'll also catch some hints as to what’s up next for the dynamic duo. I for one cannot wait for the next book – Come Alive! That’s how all her books are – completely addictive! Oh, and did I mention that Karina loves us all so much she’s releasing another novella from Dex’s point of view? Well she does, and she is! And With Madness Comes with Light is coming out on February 14th!!!
If you are looking for a suspenseful series with excellent characters, edge of your seat scares, a little romance, a lot of humor, and wonderful writing pick up the Experiment in Terror series today. Friends that have read the series have flown through it like I did and I suspect you will too! Just please refrain from hating me when you get to the end and have to wait a bit for the next book. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
P.S. Make sure you read the acknowledgments at the end. You may see someone you recognize! ;) (less)
Flat-Out-Love was so wonderfully witty and quirky... I was literally laughing out loud throughout the whole book! It was an easy read with characters...moreFlat-Out-Love was so wonderfully witty and quirky... I was literally laughing out loud throughout the whole book! It was an easy read with characters that were very likeable. Serious subject matters, like mental illness and death, were approached with humor and charm and we see first-hand the impact those events have on a family. I'm also biased because I love Boston just as much as Julie did!(less)