*3.5 stars* I saw that Duncan was having a giveaway for Indulge (Warm Delicacy #2) at her blog, and it was a...moreOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
*3.5 stars* I saw that Duncan was having a giveaway for Indulge (Warm Delicacy #2) at her blog, and it was an impulse decision to join that giveaway since I haven't read the first book yet, and when I won the giveaway, I requested a review copy for Savor. And damn if I regretted my choice; I was surprisingly hooked to Savor! I couldn't put it down, till it was 2 in the morning and I was afraid to die by my parents' hands! I genuinely liked this fairytale-ish novel.
SAVOR is about a girl, Claire Miller, who turned eighteen and had to officially start donating blood at the local hospital for the vampire population's needs. Nothing too exciting happened until the day after when a vampire under the ruling vampire family paid Clair and her mom a visit, claiming that Claire's blood is "perfect", and that she is chosen to join the ruling family as their daughter and heiress. Not given much of a choice, Claire packs up her bags and is whisked away to the palace.
I really liked the fairytale element in here. I've been fixating my reading preferences to Paranormal Romance and action for quite some time now, but once in a while, I do love a YA dreams-come-true, commoner-turn-beautiful-princess novel. Not to say that this book is all about the clouds and daisies, there are the dangers and conflicts that Claire has to face as a vampire princess, as the palace houses traitors and jealous hearts.
There was the subtle bits of romance in SAVOR that I thought was really sweet too. The first friendly male vampire that she saw, aside from King Nicolae Noire, Dmitri was friendly and helpful; Although he liked to tease Claire a lot, he's still a good guy. I wouldn't go on much about him, cause he's not the one that I'm rooting for. So the next love interest comes in the form of Arrick. Initially only a shadow in her garden, a mysterious stranger who looked out for her, now Claire's Blood Mate, the one who swears allegiance to her, and also her protector. Not only is Arrick hot, his fierce protectiveness and competence just ups the heat whenever Claire's with him.
Aside from the romance, there's also the twists in plots and curveballs thrown at us. I couldn't fathom who the betrayer was until quite late in the book, although the part where all wa revealed was a little overly-dramatic. However, I liked the second-guessings I had to do while reading SAVOR, and that the storyline flowed smoothly from start to end.
There are three things that I spotted in SAVOR which I found unpleasant:
Firstly is Claire's rather smooth transition from the day-is-night, night-is-day routine where the vamps functioned only at night. She was still a human, and she shouldn't have been able to adapt so quickly. Night time is when our body and our organs start to "recuperate", in a way, and she will tax her liver and other organs too much if she does that.
Secondly, there were the numerous puntuation errors! The first few times I encountered some minor ones, I overlooked it and continued reading. But as the story progressed and still there were errors here and there, I noted it down to be mentioned in my review. Hm, editor, what were you doing when this book was undergoing those proofreadings and editing?
Thirdly, Duncan's style of writing was a little teenager-ish. Ok, this book is under YA Lit, but I'd much prefer reading a more mature writing style.
Apart from those listed above, I thought SAVOR was a really enjoyable and light read that readers can try picking up if you think you're in need of a break after all the intense, dark thrillers or PNR books. Even though there were things that didn't suit my tastes, I was honestly hooked to its pages for most parts of the book.
If you've read the book, then you'd be familiar with this phrase:
"My last thought of the night was how excited I was that I was finally eighteen and from here on out, everything would finally start going my way." --Chapter one, page 23 of eBook.
I found it so amusing and ominously obvious that after this phrase that things will most definitely not go her way. Just saying.(less)
*2.5 stars* Let's get one thing straight - I didn't like this book. It's not that I relish in writing a bad...moreOriginally posted on A Bookalicious Story.
*2.5 stars* Let's get one thing straight - I didn't like this book. It's not that I relish in writing a bad review, but I have to keep to my code of honesty, so here goes.
Liliana "Lily" Anima has been moved from foster home to group home to foster home, and back again. She hope to find her parents one day, and dreams of the happy reunion over and over again. Even though her numerous foster parents discard her because of weird happenings that seem to revolve around Lily and the diners are all happy to see her go because of too many broken glasses, Lily has always harbored a tiny little flame of hope.
Trevor was getting his furry ass kicked by a group of newly-Turned vamps when one Lawrence Justice happened by and, philanthropist that he is, saved Trev's life. Lawrence is a 180 year old vampire who has seen much and experienced tons of heartache, but when Trev enters his life, they both feel a bond between them, a pull and lust develops.
As Lily nears her thirtieth birthday, her strange powers are making themselves more patent that she can no longer attribute all the strange occurences to coincidence. She needs to find out who she is, and how to control her powers, and who better to help her than 2 hunky Others who co-own a bookstore? But what if the truth that she finds out isn't all happiness and daisies? What if, on this journey to find her true self, she finds out that her mother is held captive by one of the most feared demon? Will she risk her two mates (yeah, the twosome became a threesome, as the title suggests) to save a mother that abandoned her at birth?
I'll name the two things that kept me reading this book: 1) This book's sequel is for a blog tour. 2) I liked Bacio's humor, some quotes that stuck, and the occasional bursts of French from Lawrence the 180 year-old vamp.
Humor example: "Something looked different about Law. It was difficult to discern, and Trev tilted his head, evaluating the vampire. He appeared harder, edgier, darker. Coming back from the verge of death could probably do that to a person, especially one who was already mostly dead."
Quote that stood out: "All she knew was that her body hurt, her throat felt raw and she desperately wanted to be back above-ground, feeling the sun’s warm rays upon her cold skin and basking in the attention of her two paranormal boys."
I liked the way Bacio phrased things; It seemed a little poetic, a little romantic, but in a modern way. And about the random bursts of French from our dear Lawrence the oldie vampire, I don't know why authors like to have them have this attribute that is to have a French background. The first few times where they go,"Mon amour" or "Ma cherie", I'll swoon and oooh-ahhh a little, but more than that it'll pass off as a cliche and it becomes, well, an unintended comedy.
Now, let's move on to the things that I didn't like about ANOT.
At the beginning, there was too much and too fast. Lily visited Trev and Law in their bookshop, and oh, they are so handsome and she feel a deep gut-level pull toward them that made warmth pool in her abdomen. Yeah, cause you get high everytime you see a handsome guy, is that it?
There were SO MANY flashbacks in between the CONVERSATION between Lily, Trev and Law when they FIRST met each other. Ok, I'll explain why I capitalized those three words. "First met each other", means that nothing much has happened yet, and I am still not convinced that this book is going to be a good one. "Conversation", means that they are talking, and still no action, which equates to boring. "So many flashbacks", not only was there no action and was boring, Bacio made the book's pace even slower by adding Lily, Trev AND Law do flashbacks by the dozens.
Apart from the exponential development of their relationship and slow pace, Bacio took it upon herself to repeat things that she has already mentioned.
On to the middle and ending portion of the book. Through this, I have learnt that all voodoo witches and fortune tellers and psychics have only 2 welcome greetings: "I have been expecting you..." and "Bout time you three showed up!" First time, oh cool, she's so good at what she does! Next few times, yeah yeah, I know. If you've watched Disney's adaptation of Hercules, you would be familiar with this scene:
If you haven't watched it, then nevermind. Oh wait, scratch that. If you haven't watched it, go watch it. So, I KNOW IT ALREADY! Move on!
Anyway, back to the story. So, give me something new, something cool and mysterious but it has to be original to stand out. The plot and pace was very steady throughout, which is slow, and which means no climax. No suspense. This was one of the most deterring aspect of this book that made me seriously consider not finishing it. And when it reached the part that seemed most like the supposed climax, Lily just scraped through fast and easy, no fight, no major obstacles, no nothing!
Usually one thing that strikes me the most are the alpha heroes or protagonist that exudes this definite aura that screams "male". I'll go hubba-hubba and all, but Trev and Law wasn't that typical males that I like. Law was a vamp who strived to help others and who preached about history and reminisced about his past love after he had sex with Lily and Trev. Wow really? So don't fault me for not believing Lily when she says,"Not only had she finally lost her virginity to two men who were sexier than hell and attentive lovers...". And Lily was all understanding and compassion that he lost his previous lover. Ok, that's totally normal. And I like my book boys bad; They're way cooler and mysterious that way.
And Trev. He was the one who had more potential, and he turned out to be the Sub in bed! Sub's a BDSM term, by the way. He was the Dom one with Lily, but Sub with Law. So no, he didn't make the cut for me.
There were a few minor loopholes here and there. Like after she up and left for New Orleans to find Trev and Law, she still had her "fuzzy pink slippers" to wear. So it's either the slippers magically teleported from her house to Trev&Law's or she brought it along with her in her luggage, which is stupid. Another one is that Lily trekked through New Orleans in a nightgown that hung in tatters, barefoot and dirty. I get that New Orleans is a city where anything is possible, but think about it. A pretty girl in little clothing in the cold, dark streets, what do you think will happen to her? NOTHING! No hypothermia, no rapist/kidnappers, no one who gawked and said,"Lady, you look like hell", and no one who was kind enough to help. She didn't cause an uproar, or spark any episode.
Lily's a nice, kind girl who became sarcastic in the face of danger. Weird, don't you think? She's normally so understanding and gentle, then when she was kidnapped, trapped, and bound in a cave, she started going all sarcastic in her own head. Hm..
Ultimately, this book didn't do it for me. The pace was slow, the characters were mediocre (tho I did kinda like Lily. She's pretty, cool, and powerful) and this one turned out to be an m/m Erotica too, so that was the big no-no for me. I prefer the usual m/f, or m/f/m, but strictly no m/m.(less)
DO NOT judge a book by its cover. Seriously, this book may seem middle-gradey and younger, but there are sexual innuendoes in here. I know I've got yo...moreDO NOT judge a book by its cover. Seriously, this book may seem middle-gradey and younger, but there are sexual innuendoes in here. I know I've got you at the sexual part, so read on, folks!
Ingenious! At first when I received the ebook from the author, well, being the Paranormal Geekfan that I am, I was thinking I wouldn't like the book, but was in a very What-the-Heck mood so I accepted it. I would never have expected myself capable of ever reading a book written in verse form (I would just faint from boredom), and then enjoy it as much as I had. It was way cool; A really modern and humorous way of retelling one of the world's most famous fairytales.
You see, there once lived 8 dwarfs in the little cottage, but the 8th one was a little different, and a little weird, so the others termed him "Creepy", and the name has stuck ever since. Creepy lived up to his name, eating insects and shaving his hair, till one day the others could stand him no more, and threw him into the cellar. Poor Creepy had a kind heart, just a little dirty, if you get what I mean. And in came Snow White one day, when his brother dwarfs were out at work, and when the old lady at the door starts coming everyday to do her wicked deeds, it's up to Creepy to save the day. But will he get accepted by the others in the end?
There really isn't a main point to the story, so my summary's a little all over the place, plus the book's only 7 pages on the Adobe Digital Edition, so I couldn't divulge all the juicy contents now, could I?
Imagine creating a poem that has 2,200 words give or take... Yeah, daunting task, doesn't it seem so? But Mullin did it. Wow, I can't even conjure a 5 paragragh worth of a half-assed poem in my Literature class, and he wrote this... Lol, that is some talent there. Not only that, he incorporated wit, humor, and he even managed to address a very controversial societal subject - the message to "not judge a book by its cover" and to not ostracize anyone just because they're different or ugly came across quite clearly in a fun and engaging way.
There was humor and a subtle sexual innuendo in the book, and a child-like quality that kept it true to its origins. There was this particular part that I really, really liked:
[This is where Snow White enters the cottage of the supposedly seven dwarfs'.] "While he sat there in silence beneath the wood floor, An unwelcome creature came in the front door. “Hello?” it called out in a voice scared and thin.
A reply was not needed. She just let herself in.
“How rude!” thought Creepy in sheer disbelief, “Unless she’s a criminal. Some kind of thief. If that is the case then it serves those dopes right, The front door unlatched, yet mine is locked tight!”
He quietly moved to the place in his tomb Where he got the best view of the ground-level room. She walked overhead, and he opened his jaw, Surprised and transfixed by the sight that he saw. Her bare feet were covered with cuts and scrapes, But beyond that were far more intriguing shapes. A layer of wrinkled-up cotton and lace Covered gentle curves in the negative space. His mind raced with thoughts not entirely clean Seeing that which was clearly not meant to be seen. He thought that perhaps he should look well away ..."
Uh huh, y'think? Lol, that's about 1 and a half pages out of the 7 that I mentioned. I'm telling you, it was 7 pages worth of smiles and surprises. Little Creepy even knew sarcasm! I got a kick reading that part of the prose, it was absolutely hilarious. And unexpected.
8 was a really "hip" way of retelling the alternate history (or in this case, alternate fairytale) of Snow White, where one neglected dwarf tells his neglected story, and it also serves as a reminder to society to stop looking at what's on the outside and start looking on the inside. Oh, and to stop being biased to the good-looking, and harbouring prejudices against the uglies.
You see, there's just too much moral values that Mullin teaches inside this little book of 7 pages. So, what's stopping you from picking this book up?(less)
2MOS was a pleasantly quick, light, and sweet read. It got off to a slow start, describing the little cave i...moreOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
2MOS was a pleasantly quick, light, and sweet read. It got off to a slow start, describing the little cave in which Sera and her Sualwet mother lived in, their daily routines and stuff like that. And since Sera's world is confined to a cave, it wasn't very exciting. But her mother has her reasons to restrict Sera from wandering out into the world - Erdlanders are barbaric beings who experiment on the hairless, underwater creatures called Sualwet. A.k.a. Sera's mother.
Sera was a mistake. A half-Sualwet-half-Erdlander who was never meant to be, and it made her an outsider on both the Sualwet's and Erdlander's front. But amidst all this discriminations, Sera remained a happy and carefree half-fish.
Her desire to explore the world beyond the cave has been suppressed long ago, up until the day an Erdlander (or so she thinks) steals some papers from her. Now, that desire has been rekindled; And the more she spends time with that thief with his towering stature and intensely blue eyes, the more she longs to see the world. She remained faithfully by her mother's side, but when the Erdlanders' and Sualwets' war encroaches onto the beach where her cave is situated, Sera would have to leave her home and escape with her thief. Can she survive in a world where she's never stepped foot in before? And who, or what, is Tor?
Well, I can't get any more spoiler-y than that, because the book is only a portion of the whole story, which would be released in a serial format. I was excited to start reading 2MOS, and it didn't fail me. There was action, and a teeeensy weensy bit of a hint of romance (or at least I'm hoping that it is), and a little bit of magic thrown into the mix. I've never really been a fan of Sci-fi/Fantasy, but I think I'll make an exception for 2MOS.
Tyler's words and phrasings are very unique and, to me, very cool. An example would be:
"But don't let that fool you; they don't possess the wisdom of the sea, only the cruelty of the sun."
Doesn't that just scream poetry/philosophy? It's just so freaking cool.
Just a little kink that bugged me. Sera's attraction to her thief, Torkek, or Tor for short, was a little too quick off the mark. I mean, he stole something that her mother gave her which was quite precious, but along with the "Oh no, give it back" feeling, she was also a little intrigued and attracted to him. Intrigued, yeah I guess I understand that that's what isolation will do to you, but attracted? Hm, that's debatable, I guess. But other than that, the friendship between the two was very pure and innocent.
I'd recommend this one to the lower age range of the YA genre.(less)
It isn't uncommon for the premise of books such as The Mermaid's Knight to be thought of...moreOriginally posted on A Bookalicious Story.
It isn't uncommon for the premise of books such as The Mermaid's Knight to be thought of as "Cliche", "Childish", and "Totally not worth the time". Well, ok I have to admit that: Cliche? Yes. Childish? A liiiittle bit. Totally not worth the time? Utter bullshit. Cause this book had my completely under its thrall throughout the reading process. It was, and is, THAT good. Hence, I was shellshocked.
Just a brief summary before I continue with my shellshocked ramblings - Leah died. It was a rather wronged way to go - drunk driver crashed into her, she died, he didn't. So while she was floating in the alternate dimension, her fairy godmother appeared.
Muffin is a plump, jovial woman. A little eccentric, but still possesses a genial disposition. She admitted that the accident was all her fault for not paying enough attention, and so grants her a second chance at life. Catch is (there will always be a catch. NO FREE LUNCH IN THIS WORLD!): She has to make a guy in another time and place fall in love with her - Fairytale-style.
So Muffin decides that Leah would take after Ariel in The Little Mermaid. Leah will be turned into a mermaid, and while she's on land as a human, she won't be able to talk. What's worse is that her intended target, one Lord Royce Northcliffe, is a weather-bitten, war-hardened warrior who doesn't indulge in things such as love. So how, oh how, will poor, mute-when-human Leah seduce old Royce's granite heart?
Well, I'm still reeling from the shock of having fallen in love with this book.. For one, I'm not big on the whole happy-gayness novels with an easy plot which I can breeze thru in no time. Nuh uh, no can do. But the thing is, this book, tho cliche in general, do have the elements of surprise that kept my eyeballs freaking glued to its pages. I assumed that this book would be very predictable, but Myles just kept the surprises rolling in, and I really liked that a lot.
Leah and Royce together, were just simply adorable. The suspicious nature of our dear warrior definitely did hinder their relationaship from progressing much, but well, it did liven up the atmosphere sometimes. For example when Leah was first found naked on shore (and subsequent times too), Royce was totally unamused to find, at that time he assumed to be, his enemy's leman or wench, or simpy, his prostitute, on his shore. So he immediately thought her a spy and was all macho-man, "What the hell are you doing here, girl?" Ok, not direct quote, but you get the point. And she fainted. LOL. So he threw her over his shoulder and carried her to camp. Wrapped in a cloak like a burrito.
The, um, I can't really say banters since Leah can't talk, but their exchanges are hilarious. I absolutely enjoyed them. Y'know, the fact that Myles could make it so engaging is phenomenal in itself. One party of the conversation can't freaking talk, for god's sake! But she did it. Oh, and I think she kinda made up for it by showing us what Leah was thinking in place of any verbal responses, so yep, it was still like a conversation. But whenever Royce said something Leah thought was ridiculous, Leah would stamp on his feet. It was real sweet. Haha. Albeit a little gay, but sweet all the same.
This book...is it under adult fiction or Young Adult? Um, it is childish in a YA way, but the sexuality of it is definitely adult fiction. Tho a LITTLE bit more childish than YA at the beginning (the rest was fine!), and a LITTLE bit less porny than adult fiction, so... To each his own.:)
To sum it all up, I am still shocked. Shocked that such a cliche fairytale story can be twisted and rewritten so well where all others have failed (and it wasn't because of the lack of attempts); Shocked that, well, I fell badly for such a gay story - but not the point; Shocked that the plot and storyline could be handled so well even when so much other problems were brewing in the background - made it all the more exciting that it's so eventful; Shocked that Myles could've made a mute's conversation so entertaining. List goes on. But all in all, I loved the story.
P.S. It kinda reminds me of The River of Times series because of the travelling back in time and falling for a lord of some castle, and Kathryn Lasky's Daughter of the Sea series which features women who can turn into mermaids when they come into any bodily contact with water. So, if you're a fan of either one, why not try this one?(less)
I have never really been taken by the whole Fantasy genre with their olden kingdom politics and magicians running amok, bonding together, rebel agains...moreI have never really been taken by the whole Fantasy genre with their olden kingdom politics and magicians running amok, bonding together, rebel against some crazy, evil king, then The End. But this, this book has changed my perception of it.
I loved it how Snyder didn't rush thru with the romance. (Sorry I kinda always start off with the romance part of the books I review. What can I say? I'm a romantic person. Lol, pfft. Yeah right, coming from a person who have never had a bf. Heh. Confessions of a nun, huh.XP No offense meant to any nuns out there) Lover boy and Avry started out hating each other, but we all know that they were going to end up together, so it was fun watching them piss each other off. She dragged out the tension between them, Lover Boy only softening towards her about a little more than halfway thru the novel, but when they finally admitted their feelings for each other.. Wow, you'll be thinking how worth the wait was. It was amazing, magical, and one of the sweetest love scenes I've seen in a long while.
The antagonist - Tohon. Very evil, very crazy, very greedy, and very powerful. A very dangerous combination. What's worse is that he isn't all old, wrinkly and gnarled, clawed hands. Instead, he was so very handsome, and his charming personality a terrifying arsenal that he uses with ease. He even convinced me at some points that he was one of the good guys! So handsome and smart.. Too bad he's got a black heart..
I liked Avry a lot. She was smart, very smart actually, very brave, very righteous, just, compassionate, witty, and self-sacrificing.
I thought that the plot and storyline were very convincing and believable for a Fantasy novel. Very political and there were the usual amounts of skirmishes between the countries, bounty hunters, merceneries, etc.
I loved Snyder's humor and wit in TOUCH OF POWER. It's so........fantasy-like. Lol, um duh, yes I know. But well, it's such a cute way of putting things. Cute, yes, that's the word I was searching for. A cute, witty humor.
One little thing that I noticed. Even tho we're constantly in Avry's head, Snyder doesn't reveal everything that she's thinking nor about everything that had happened in the past. It's effective in building up the suspense and adding in the thrill factor. It's cool. Just a little thing that I picked out that other novels seem to not be able to duplicate. Nothing major.
I've told you that I don't usually like Fantasy novels, right? I'll tell you why I loved this book: Snyder can WRITE. Even tho the plot wasn't all that different to any other Fantasy novels, it never, never got boring. Her description of the lush forests, the adrenaline-pumping actions scenes, and romantic scenes... They were absolutely, wonderfully delivered, and her words carried me to the end. Will definitely try her other series (I think it is called Poison series) soon!
Anyway, I loved it, and would recommend this to all Fantasy fans. Maybe if you would like to tone down on the gore and eroticism factor, you can try this YA Fantasy one! :)
*This eARC was provided by Netgalley and from Harlequin in exchange for an honest review.*
This book comprises of two novellas - DRAGON ACTUALLY and CHAINS AND FLAMES (both are connec...moreThis review was originally posted on A Bookalicious Story.
This book comprises of two novellas - DRAGON ACTUALLY and CHAINS AND FLAMES (both are connected).
To describe what I felt immediately after I got to the The End, I would probably put it as "Lukewarm".
Annwyl the Bloody and Fearghus the Destroyer have both earned their reputation, and they mighty well deserve it.
Both have a great destiny upon them, and both destinies are rather intimately intertwined, if you know what I mean. Lol.
Annwyl leads a fearsome rebellion which has garnered the support from the neighboring kingdoms against her cruel brother. Both hates each other, and wants to see the other's head on a pike. The last one standing gets to rule Dark Plains.
Fearghus is a prince, but an emotionless and unfeeling one at that. All he wanted was to live peacefully and alone in his cave in the Dark Glen, but all that serenity and tranquility was shattered when Annwyl and her adversaries stumbled in fighting to the death.
Annwyl was losing the fight and was bleeding heavily when Fearghus emerged from his cave in his dragon form. The other soldiers tried to run but were burnt to cinders mere seconds later. Annwyl just stood in front of the dragon, talked some crap, and fainted (from the wound at her side). Fearghus was intrigued by this woman who didn't cower or grovel at his feet upon meeting him, so he, with the aid of his sister, healed her.
Therein begins a great love story between dragon and woman. But their lives in peace were not to be, and soon, Annwyl has to lead her loyal troops to battle against her brother, who has managed to procure Hefaidd-Hen as an ally, one of the most powerful and feared wizards of all time...
I thought it rather cliche, actually. And Fearghus's attraction to her was close to instantaneous, which, I think, lacked proper development. It was all too soon when Fearghus started being afraid that Annwyl would have to leave him one day. However, Annwyl took some time to warm up to him, prompting Fearghus to court her (in their totally bizarro ways. Well, one is The Bloody and the other The Destroyer. What did you expect? Tulips and daisies?). Looking at them slowly get past the denial that they're in love and start to warm up to each other was sweet, and that saved my impression of the book.
The final battle which I was led to think was supposed to be an epic finale, but lol, it wasn't. It was actually all said and done in the middle of the book. Know why, cause Fearghus and Annwyl still had a lot to settle amongst themselves. So the back part of the book was mainly dedicated to the romance department more than the fantasy sector.
It wasn't bad, not all that amazing neither was it downright boring. Lukewarm, really.
1) The names in here are downright bizzaro.
Example: Briec the Mighty - it sounds like Brick. Lol, Mighty Brick. Gwenvael. Can you guess little Gwen's sex? He's a man. Gasp. Morfyd - It reminds me of morphine.. Fearghus - Fear girls. Really? Annwyl - It just sounds funny to me.
2) When Fearghus piss Annwyl off in one of their snarky banters and arguments that is a love-hate thing for me, Annwyl growls. She's a human, how can she growl? I can't growl, would love to, but... How?
3)Oh, and can I just say that I don't like the cover? Lol.
Chains and Flames
In a way, CHAINS AND FLAMES is very much similar to DRAGON ACTUALLY. CHAINS AND FLAMES is the story of how Berclek, Fearghus's father, met and courted Fearghus's mom, Rhiannon. And as the saying goes, like father, like son.
Rhiannon and her mom, the Queen of all dragons, hadn't had a very good mother and daughter relationship, and her mother, fearing her daughter's immense powers, sealed Rhiannon's magic and betrothed her to one of her most loyal commanders, Bercelek.
Hearing this, Bercelek needed no encouragement to Claim her, since he had already set his sights on her way back when they were merely 50 winters old (yes, back when they were younger, around 50 years of age. Lol)the very first time he laid eyes on her. But y'know, like Fearghus, Bercelek only likes those girls with a fearsome, strong-willed, and mighty obstinate attitude.
So that actually says a lot about our dear Rhiannon already, actually. She was very opposed to marrying the low born, loyal to her archenemy (her mom) Bercelek, but she hadn't any choice since her mom took the liberty to seal away her powers almost completely, rendering her unable to shift back to her humongous, beautiful, strong, white dragon form. All that and leaving her at the mouth of Bercelek's cave high up in the mountains, which means the only way out, is down.
Thus begin the slow seduction of the handsome dragon warrior to the girl of his dream, all kicking and scratching and ordering him around whenever he got near. That plus the traps and plots Rhiannon's evil mom have set in place for the couple...
I liked C&F more than DRAGON ACTUALLY. I'm not really sure why, with Rhiannon's masochistic love for being bound when Bercelek does his things to her (in bed, I might add), I found them more endearing.
The romance segment in here was developed much better; Rhiannon did not immediately take to being forced unto just another male by her overbearing and obnoxious mother. And although Bercelek kind of fell for her the instant he saw her, there was a good reason for that. It was an accident, really. Bercelek accidentally stepped on her tail when he was entering the throne room one day, and she turned around and almost killed him. And that turned him on. Weird, but it's a reason nonetheless.
Tho the romance did improve, the plot sure didn't. Lol, a little ridiculous and fantastic, if you ask me. Petty love affairs and family discord because of paranoia and frayed nerves. Very insubstantial.
Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the witty banters between our protagonist couple and with Bercelek's family. I loved the sarcastic humor and those humor borne out of Rhiannon's innocence and Bercelek's possessiveness of her that Aiken imparted within.
Example 1: "He turned her to look at him, both hands gripping her upper arms. "Could you have been more obvious?"
She blinked in confusion. "Obvious about what?"
"Your blatant admiration of my father."
"Well even you have to admit he's bloody gorgeous!"
He didn't have to admit a damn thing.
She winced. "Oooh. Well that came out terribly wrong..."
Oh, speaking about being gorgeous, one thing I'm kinda miffed about is everyong, and I mean EVERYONE in their realm is beautiful. I mean, what the hell?
Example 2: [Something was happening to Rhiannon when she was in Bercelek's home and was surrounded by his parents and his many siblings.]
Then... she dropped. As if one of the gods slammed her with his mighty claws. But the force behind it was so great, Rhiannon’s body slammed through the floor of the Great Hall, disappearing from their sight.
“The dungeon! She’s gone to the dungeon!”
“We have a dungeon?”
Oh, and I loved some of her descriptions. HEE-larious.
Example: With a groaned sigh of resignation, he released her wrists and rolled onto his back. Still, she had to bite her lip to stop herself from laughing at the sight of his erection creating a nice tent with the bedding.
Nice tent with the bedding...Like, WHAAT?
Haha, yep, other than that are the many sweet moments that Rhiannon and Bercelek had nearer to the end. But at the start, it's more of Bercelek's hot wooing. He was very confident and very alpha. Very dangerous combination, indeed. Yum. LOL.
It was a relaxing read, not too fast-paced or adrenaline pumping.
Anyway, yep, I would give this book a 4 gladly, or maybe a 4.5.:)(less)
This review was originally posted on abookaliciousstory.blogspot.com .
I have no idea how to comment on this book, because really, there isn't much to...moreThis review was originally posted on abookaliciousstory.blogspot.com .
I have no idea how to comment on this book, because really, there isn't much to go on about! I've just finished the book and I'm already writing the review! Which is a first. Usually I would be reeling from the emotional maelstrom (lol, a little exaggerating, but I have always felt a lot for books:D) after a novel, no matter my opinion of it. This one is more of a summer beach read where you'll lie on shore and breeze thru it, and once you're done, you'll place the book on your chest, sigh in contentment, then forget about it the next day.
Lol, lame, but true.
Elena Knightsbridge has been adopted into her uncle, aunt and cousin's not-very-loving fold since her parents died when she was just a kid. After her aunt died, her uncle has become increasingly bold in his perverted advances toward her and her cousin (whom I feel inclined to emphasize, is his daughter). Everything took a turn for the worse when her cousin chose to elope with a boy from the neighboring town.
I have to name an example so you can truly feel the revulsion that churned my guts as I read. Elena actually woke up one night to find her uncle standing over her bed just staring at her with those lusty eyes, and ugh.
Anyway now, being stuck with her uncle and having come of age has spurred her uncle to propose to her (not in a very, um, gentlemanly way). She then decided to up and seek refuge at the nearby castle atop the hill. Well that's totally not cliche.
So, lo and behold, therein lives handsome, tall, and dark Lord Drake of Wolfram Castle.
Let me just cut the crap and sum everything up from here on out: They fell in love (mm, surprise surprise. yay.). But their love was not meant to be because mortals and vamps are forbidden to fall in love. Furthermore, Drake's daddy dearest has already betrothed him to another vamp woman from another Coven. Political reasons, which are all the more stringent and binding.
Yep, that's all out for you in a nutshell. Not a nutshell, more like a cockroach capsule, in my opinion.
The plot was simple, not as eventful as one would normally expect, and slow-going. And their love started off with their attraction to the other's outer beauty. Lol, now you would expect me to say that I didn't like the book, huh? But no, surprisingly. Even tho the suspense and thrill factor in vamp romance novels was lacking and sorely inadequate, I actually kind of liked it. It made for a rather relaxing, pleasant, and as I've said, a summer beach read.
Elena..is...well, pretty (but as male protagonist Drake's incessant reminder, beautiful), loving, sweet (but I would actually call it gay and weak), and um.. Weepy. Yep, she is a weepy girl. That's all about her, really.
Drake..is... Tall, dark, and handsome. Did you expect anything less? I didn't. Utter perfection which will never exist in this world, warm, romantic, protective (yes, this one I appppprrroooovvveeee). He was tortured and imprisoned in a dungeon, but he still bargained for her safety and comfort at his expense. Hubba hubba.
Elena was the only character whom Ashley deemed fit to develop. I still don't know much of Drake's past, or anyone else's for that matter. Side characters were just that, on the sidelines, periphery, y'know what I mean?
But there was humor in this, albeit a little scarce and far between. The only one I can remember came in the form of Elena's innocence. Example: [Elena wanted to swim in the lake behind the Wolfram Castle where they live, but the water was too cold when she tested it. Drake came up to her then and said to trust him and go in.]
Surprisingly, as she waded out closer toward him, the water grew warmer. “Why is it warmer out here?” she asked suspiciously. “You didn’t pee in the pool, did you?” Drake threw back his head and laughed. “No, my love. I merely infused a little preternatural power into the water to warm it for you.” Elena sighed with amazement. Truly, there was nothing this man couldn’t do.
Lol, and there were a few times where I thought her descriptions became an unintended comedy.
Example: He had an arousal that would have done a stallion proud.
Lastly, I thought that this book should be classified under the Young Adult genre. (It isn't, right?) There weren't any sexual scenes in here, zero, nada. The closest it ever came to being rated was that stallion arousal thing up there. All it ever said was them undressing then oh, they climaxed, murmurred sweet nothings, then sleep.
That's it really. Nothing overly fanciful and exciting, but pleasant and relaxing. Didn't regret picking it up, but I wouldn't really recommend it to anyone.
1) Did the author choose Wolfram as the castle's name because there really is a castle in Transylvania called Wolfram, or is she just trying to be lame and use "wolf" because of the reknown fact that lycans and vamps are sworn enemies? That's like the weirdest sense of humor. Ever.
2) When Drake was summoned in front of his father, the Master Vampire of wherever he is head of, Elena went with him. And over there, there are humans kept there as "nourishment" for the vamps ensconced there, and they are called Sheeps. Elena was wondering whether the vamp captors take good care of the Sheeps, and when she saw that they were, she thought: Of course, it only made sense that the vampires would take good care of their food supply.
***So I would like to take this chance to tell everyone out there reading this review to tell all those mother f-ers who abuse the animals that are bred to be our food source: STOP ABUSING THEM FOR NO GOOD REASON OTHER THAN FOR YOUR OWN SICK, PERVERSE PLEASURES. It's common sense to treat them well, douchebags. They are already sacrificing their lives unwillingly to sustain your own, be grateful.***(less)