He was dead. And it was murder most foul. If erasing a man’s existence could even be called murder.
When Damien Mitchell wakes, he finds himseSynopsis:
He was dead. And it was murder most foul. If erasing a man’s existence could even be called murder.
When Damien Mitchell wakes, he finds himself without a life or a name. The Montana asylum’s doctors tell him he’s delusional and his memories are all lies: he’s really Stephen Thompson, and he’d gone over the edge, obsessing about a rock star who died in a fiery crash. His chance to escape back to his own life comes when his prison burns, but a gunman is waiting for him, determined that neither Stephen Thompson nor Damien Mitchell will escape.
With the assassin on his tail, Damien flees to the City by the Bay, but keeping a low profile is the only way he’ll survive as he searches San Francisco for his best friend, Miki St. John. Falling back on what kept him fed before he made it big, Damien sings for his supper outside Finnegan’s, an Irish pub on the pier, and he soon falls in with the owner, Sionn Murphy. Damien doesn’t need a complication like Sionn, and to make matters worse, the gunman—who doesn’t mind going through Sionn or anyone else if that’s what it takes kill Damien—shows up to finish what he started.
Totally loved this sequel. With the way book one ended, this totally lived up to that for me. Of course, Rhys goes and pulls another mean ending on me! So wrong! Once again, our main couple gets their HEA, but then, we get a POV from a different character to set up their book. And man does said character drop a bomb! I hope he goes to his brothers and cousin for some advice. I have a feeling he'll have a rough time of things.
Anyway, on to our couple! Damien is such a survivor. Hard not to love that guy! And Sionn was just plain awesome even though he has some cheesy line moments. Still, he was there for Damien and he did an excellent job of getting him to open up and know love. I loved the two of them together. I was glad that once they decided to be together, they stayed together. The best part of it all was that it was Damien that wanted to know where Sionn stood. I would have thought Sionn would be the one to start that conversation.
The plot certainly kept me engaged. I wasn't expecting POVs from the killer. That guy was suuuuuccccchhhh a douche! Hated him! But he kept everyone on their toes. I don't feel bad at all over what happened to him.
My other favorite part was the reunion between Damien and Miki. That was just sweet. I cried.
I am enjoying the hell out of this series. Gimme book 3, Rhys!...more
Everywhere Detective Gavin DeGrassi looks he’s reminded of his attack by the Breath Play Killer. It’s in the house he lives in with his partnSynopsis:
Everywhere Detective Gavin DeGrassi looks he’s reminded of his attack by the Breath Play Killer. It’s in the house he lives in with his partner and Dom, Ben Haverson. It’s in the sympathetic yet pitying looks he receives from his fellow detectives when he returns to the force after a year-long hiatus. It’s in the suffocating coddling of his entire family, and the relentless reporter demanding an exclusive of his ordeal.
Most of all, it’s in his lack of submission to Ben, who isn’t convinced Gavin’s recovered enough to trust the power exchange between them.
The miraculous recovery of two teen boys from a twisted kidnapper gives him heart, and Gavin's determined to prove he can handle anything despite increasing strain between him and Ben, painful nightmares, and panic when anyone touches him.
But his next case is too close for comfort: a friend and colleague found raped and murdered in a fate chillingly similar to what could have been his own, and this killer isn’t stopping with one cop. As the body count rises and taunting souvenirs are being hand-delivered to Gavin, he faces a frustrating lack of leads, a crushing need to prove himself, and a sinking suspicion the imprisoned kidnapper’s reach is further than originally thought. A miasma of uncertainty and fear threaten to suffocate him when he asks a question with which he’s overwhelmingly familiar: what happens when a victim is pushed too far?
In this town, danger moves to a steamy Latin beat.
Crimes & Cocktails, Book 1
SFPD detective Gabriel Sandalini might as well have put a gunSynopsis:
In this town, danger moves to a steamy Latin beat.
Crimes & Cocktails, Book 1
SFPD detective Gabriel Sandalini might as well have put a gun to his own head. One red-hot sexual encounter in a bar’s back room has put two years of deep undercover work in jeopardy—two years of danger and deception as he worked his way into crime boss Ricco Botelli’s inner circle. Gabriel can’t afford emotional entanglements. Hell, he can’t afford emotions. But that was before he had a name to pin on that anonymous one-off—Miguel Ortega.
Miguel Ortega doesn’t trust anyone, but tough, street-smart Gabriel brings out the conquistador in his Spanish blood. But distractions are nothing short of deadly right now, not with his boss’s impending marriage to Botelli’s sister, which will ensure peace—and massive drug profits—for both families.
On a trip to Mexico to set up drug supply lines, a violent confrontation proves they’ve got each other’s backs—to a degree.
Then one savage act changes everything, testing not only their fragile bond, but Gabriel’s will to live.
I actually decided to read this based off an excerpt from the first chapter in the back of another Josh Lanyon book. It was hot as all hell and I knew I had to read this. I'm soooo glad that I did.
I loved Gabriel even though he had a serious case of smart-mouthedness, cockiness and recklessness. He could be quite acerbic, but he was so vulnerable at times that I couldn't help but to want the best for him. I ended up liking Antonio as well. Surprisingly, he was quite the romantic. I loved the way he could read Gabriel so well and that he was so willing to take such good care of him.
As heartbreaking as it was, I liked the twist the story took because of what went down in the warehouse that day. It was a different direction for the authors to take the story in and I kind of like that it's a permanent situation and not something easily reversible. It gives the story a different dynamic and I loved watch Gabriel adjust despite the fact that he was so angry and kept lashing out at Antonio. But as time passed and he was better able to fend for himself, he was better at handling his emotions. He still lashed out in anger, but that's Gabriel's nature. I was just glad that Antonio could handle it.
Aside from all of that, I loved the whole mob thing going on. I wanted to smack the shit out of Gina every time she was on the page, though. Stupid ass bitch.
The sex scenes were hot and descriptive just the way that I like them.
The second part of the book was more emotional and just this side of sappy at times, but I loved it just as much as the first part, though the first part was my favorite. I just loved being in Gabriel's head.
I think other fans of M/M romance or erotica would enjoy this book as well.
Here's hoping that the sequel won't be much longer in coming, though it has already been several years since this first book came out....more
After having their faces plastered across the news during a high-profile case, FBI Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett have become moreSynopsis:
After having their faces plastered across the news during a high-profile case, FBI Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett have become more useful to the Bureau posing for photo ops than working undercover. Just as Zane is beginning to consider retirement a viable option, Ty receives a distress call from a friend, leading them to a city rife with echoes from the past.
New Orleans wears its history on its streets, and it’s the one place Ty’s face could get him killed. Surrounded by trouble as soon as they land, Ty and Zane are swiftly confronted with a past from which Ty can’t hide—one with a surprising connection to Zane’s.
As threats close in from all directions, both men must come to terms with the lives they’ve led and the lies they’ve told. They soon discover that not all their secrets are out yet, and nothing lasts forever.
O. M. G. How could it end right there?! And the next book isn't out until March 2014?! I'm going to die waiting for that. Ty and Zane are officially my most favorite couple of all time. I don't know if I can handle that wait. I will totally be re-reading these books many times. Who knows how many times even before the next release comes out that I'll reread them? God! That wait!
I absolutely loved this one even with all of the heartbreaking moments. When Zane found out Ty's two biggest secrets he'd been keeping from him, I thought I'd die from the sense of betrayal Zane was experiencing. And then I thought I'd die again when he started lashing out at Ty so very badly. Those scenes were painful to read. I knew Zane hurt and I knew Ty was dying inside with every hurtful word and deed Zane said or did. It all hurt so bad. Because they'd been so happy just before they got to New Orleans. Even during the time when they first got there despite how dangerous it was for Ty to be there. And they wouldn't have gone if not for that phone call. That phone call that interrupted Zane's proposal to Ty. God! I want to read that!
The next thing you know, they're running for their lives and Zane practically hates Ty and Ty's world is crashing down around his ears. That period of time was so, so hard to get through. Yeah, these are fictional characters but damn it all if I don't care about every little thing that happens to them as through they were real people.
As usual, the sex between these two was hotter than all hell. I saw it all the time, but these two really know how to get it on. But my favorite moment was near the end after they come back together after the month apart. Ty needed time to get himself right and Zane needed time to discover who he was outside of Ty and his job. And he did that. He did that really well and I was so proud of him.
But this part summed up everything for me:
"Who are you, Ty?" Ty smiled against his cheek. "I was an assassin," he whispered. "I'm a Marine. I'm the man who doesn't miss. And I'm yours." Zane bit his lip on a smile. "Who are you Zane?" Zane cocked his head. "I'm an artist. I'm a geek." He felt Ty smile. "I'm one badass motherfucker on a motorcycle." Ty began to laugh. Zane dipped his head until they were staring into each other's eyes. "And I'm yours."
Totally swooned over that. I could read that over and over and never get tired of it.
And just as they get happy again. They find out that the person that was behind all of the trouble in the NO is someone that they know in work with--but they still have no clue as to who it is. But before they can start to find out... Abigail Roux goes and pulls a fast one on us all and Ty has to leave with no choice behind it! And then he throws it all to the wind and I guess he decides that there's no point in hiding anymore and kisses Zane right in the middle of the office! Right in front of everyone! I'm assuming Burns was still standing there when he did it, but wow! That was amazing! That was my favorite part right after the scene above, but it ended after that! And now I have to wait! I'm going to cry over that alone! But that's definitely another scene I could read forever and never tire of it. This whole series is full of scenes like that for me and not just the sex scenes. I'm hooked and I want Ty and Zane to beat it all. Whoever is trying to kill one or both of them better watch the fuck out because these guys aren't going anywhere without a fight and I soooooo can't wait to read more about them....more
Good advice...especially when a story can kill you.
For most people, the story of their livesSynopsis:
“Never underestimate the power of a good story.”
Good advice...especially when a story can kill you.
For most people, the story of their lives is just that: the accumulation of time, encounters, and actions into a cohesive whole. But for an unfortunate few, that day-to-day existence is affected—perhaps infected is a better word—by memetic incursion: where fairy tale narratives become reality, often with disastrous results.
That's where the ATI Management Bureau steps in, an organization tasked with protecting the world from fairy tales, even while most of their agents are struggling to keep their own fantastic archetypes from taking over their lives. When you're dealing with storybook narratives in the real world, it doesn't matter if you're Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, or the Wicked Queen: no one gets a happily ever after.
This book was so very imaginative to me. The things Seanan McGuire can do with an existing story in order to make it her own. This is like no fairy-tale book you've ever read. I can't believe the way she set this up and executed it. I never saw a lot of what was going on coming. Honestly, it was just so out there, that I couldn't imagine it, but I was really happy to be reading it.
I loved that the book was in Henry's 1st person POV, but that we still got inside the heads of the other team members and people that ended up being their cases via 3rd person POVs as well. I especially liked getting Sloane's POVs. It was nice to have a villainous good guy on the team. Sloane could be a bitch, but it was expected considering her story type. She made the book just that much more fun so that it wasn't all dark all the time, but she definitely had her own dark moments.
I loved that Henry was Snow White, but didn't let herself embody the way that Snow was supposed to behave. Even when she ended up deeper into her story because of the way the narrative got manipulated, she still kicked her story's ass. She wasn't perfect all the time, but she led her team well, I thought. She even managed to find herself some happiness which I suspect she never expected to have considering she hated princes and most people freaked out when they looked at her. She was no Disney Snow White. She looked more like a walking dead girl. Still, Henry kicks butt, which is why I like her just as much as I like Sloane.
The other team members were likable, too. Sometimes they squabble and Demi was so lost and confused and scared most of the time, but they worked well together.
The way that the story turned was pretty awesome to me. Once it became apparent that someone was twisting things behind the scenes, I was dying to find out who it was and how the team would stop them. It was even more twisted than I realized it would be. Pretty much the entire team was dragged much deeper into their stories by the end of things and even Andy who doesn't have his own story nearly ended up in two stories of his own. They were all pretty shocked by who was twisting the narrative so much and what they were doing with it. Once they did, though, I ended up feeling stupid for not figuring it out myself. Hell, even the characters were feeling stupid. I bet whoever hired them at the Bureau felt stupid, too.
Still, I think there's more to this. A benefactor was mentioned. Who is that? Why would they want the traitor to do what they did? Who could possibly benefit from it all? Henry found out some things when she was in that wood the last time, but she never did get a chance to tell the others about it. Does this mean there will be a sequel? I hope so. There's still more that can happen and I want to see it!...more
In Northern Genabackis, tribal mountain warriors raid southern flatlands. Years later, Tavore, Adjunct to the Empress, enters the last MalazaSynopsis:
In Northern Genabackis, tribal mountain warriors raid southern flatlands. Years later, Tavore, Adjunct to the Empress, enters the last Malazan stronghold. New to command, she must hone 12,000 recrutis to resist the Whirlwind of her sister Sha in the Holy Desert. The power struggle of the seer's warlords threatens the soul of the rebellion.
It has been a long, long time since I last wrote a real review. I've been seriously slacking. However, I can't not write a review for an epic fantasy novel. It must be done now or I'll forget everything that I need to comment on. So much happens and so many things change over the course of an epic fantasy novel that if I put off writing the review, I'll forget most of the good stuff and there's plenty to be had here.
This book starts out differently than the others. In the first three books, we are introduced to multiple characters right at the start and you wonder what the hell any of these stories have to do with each other. Over the course of the book, you start to see them converge as all hell starts breaking loose. We get that in this one, too, except that the first few chapters (about 22%-25% of the book) are all from the POV of one character, Karsa Orlong.
Now, at first, I had no idea why Karsa Orlong was relevant. What did I care about some arrogant asshole who just cared about killing folks, raping women and earning glory? Half the time, he was willfully ignorant and others, just plain ignorant. From the moment he set out, he was being used. Honestly, I didn't like him even one little bit. The way he treated Bairoth and Delum was awful. He wouldn't listen to advice and he seemed to shun knowledge. I'll admit, he was damned powerful, though and pretty bad ass. When he first got himself captured by some Malazans, I was happy. But the longer he was enslaved, the more I began to feel for him. I actually started feeling sorry for him! I was happy that he had Tovald Nom with him to keep him sane and his spirit from being broken. I began to resent Karsa's "gods" who were only using him for some purpose that I knew was no good. Still, after everything he'd gone through, Karsa kept proving his badassery. And, he started to develop as a character. He begins to be more introspective and realizes what's going on around him. He learns and grows. He's still violent as hell. Rude, too. Yet, I can't get enough of Karsa and his unyielding personality. More of his POVs show up throughout the book and he even interacts with another of my most favorite characters who was introduced in book 2. Karsa doesn't along with most people, but I end up liking the people he does get along with because not very many people can handle Karsa's personality. It's a plus in their favor. Plus, it helps that Leoman is also a bad ass. Anyway, if I don't stop here, this review will turn into nothing but a worship of Karsa Orlong. I love he.
I was quite pleased with the cast of characters in this installment of the series. Kalam and Fiddler were both back. I felt bad for them when they learned what became of the Bridgeburners on Genabackis. There were some surprise Bridgeburner reunions, too. Lostara Yil and Pearl both return. We even get to see Gesler, Stormy and Truth again. That made me real happy. There's a lot of Cotillion in this book, too. And Iskaral Pust's crazy ass self. I was not happy to see Korbolo Dom and Kamist Reloe again, but it made sense considering what they did in Deadhouse Gates. They pay for it, too and that made me smile.
I'm not entirely sure how to feel about Heboric's new title, but I'm happy enough about it if it keeps him around for a while. He's still got to go back to that jade giant, though. As for those giants, he made a rather big discovery, though I'm not certain I completely understand that revelation. It's something big, for sure, but considering what happened right after Heboric had that vision or whatever it was, he got claimed by Treach and seemed to forget what just happened to him. He forgot a lot of things for a while. At least when he came back to his senses, he was able to take care of a few things.
The outcome of Tavore's army arriving in Raraku didn't go quite that way I was expecting. There was battle, yeah, but most of it was hidden. I was glad that Kalam, Quick Ben and Karsa got in on that action, though. There were also a hell of a lot of ghosts around. Hell, the ghosts did most of the damn killing. In the end, a certain character's death was a bit anti-climatic. (view spoiler)[Especially since Tavore doesn't know the truth of who she killed. (hide spoiler)] I suppose it was a mercy, in the end.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
The ravaged continent of Genabackis is a terrifying new empire, the Pannion Domin, that devours all. An uneasy allliance resists: Onearm's arSynopsis:
The ravaged continent of Genabackis is a terrifying new empire, the Pannion Domin, that devours all. An uneasy allliance resists: Onearm's army, Whiskeyjack's Bridgeburners and former enemies - forces of Warlord Caladan Brood, Anomander Rake and his Tiste Andii mages, and the Rhivi people of the plains. And the Crippled God intends revenge.
Ripped apart. That's what this book did to me. True, for most of the book, our characters are marching. They're marching against a horrible empire, but it takes them forever to friggin' get there. However, along the way, many revelations come to light. We learn a whole lot about Silverfox. We learn some things about Onearm's Host. Some characters come together in love. Old gods descend and new ones ascend. Really old gods return and take their rightful place. Really, the gods are really involved in this book. They were in the first one as well, and a bit in the second, but really involved here. And well they should have been considering the threat was mostly to them. It just affects everyone else as a side effect.
Once again, we meet a lot of new characters and I knew they would somehow meet up with old favorites and man did they ever. I fell in love with some of these new characters. I hope to see some of them again and I will mourn the loss of others. I will definitely be mourning the loss of a lot of my favorites. One of my favorites, I thought was lost forever, but him, at least, I got back in another state. I wonder if I'll see him again. I can't be too sure, but if not, at least I'll know he's still out there somewhere in his new capacity. I appreciated getting to better know characters that were only seen as enemies of the Malazan's in Gardens of the Moon. This was thanks in big part to how amazing a man Whiskeyjack is. I love Whiskeyjack. (view spoiler)[That is one loss to make me cry over and over again. My heart broke during that scene. If only he'd let someone look at that leg! (hide spoiler)] Whiskeyjack gained himself a lover and a very unexpected friend. The friendship with Anomander Rake made me so happy even admist all of the darkness occurring elsewhere on Genabackis. There was a lot of pain and suffering here. A lot of it inflicted on one of my most favorite characters from book 1 that I had not expected to love so much. I knew he would come back in the series at some point, but I never would have guessed that it would be in the role that he played. He was so hurt, but he was rewarded, in the end. Thank goodness for that.
Another character I came to love was Itkovian, Shield Anvil of Fener. What an amazing person. His outcome was fitting, but I cried my eyes out. I'm just glad he was able to do what he was able to do. The two marines that followed Silverfox I also loved. As well as Trotts, Picker, Blend and Hedge of the Bridgeburners. Gruntle and Stonny the Daru caravan guards. It was awesome seeing the unexpected return of Kruppe. Murillio and Coll. I came to really love Korlat and Caladan Brood, too. As well as Tool, that rouge T'lan Imass. My favorite character of the series by far remains Quick Ben, though. I love that scheming ass mage. Him and his brain and his ego and that grin he wears when he's up to something. You and Paran did good, Quick.
The Mhybe frustrated me. I understood why she was running during those dreams, but I wanted to throttle her. I started out feeling awful for her, but quickly came to dislike her strongly. My feelings for her mirror my feelings for Felisin in Deadhouse Gates. She frustrated the living crap out of me. She finally did the right thing in the end, but she took she damned long!
Anyway, I was crying like a baby during the last 12% of this book. I'd cry and cry and then the action would move on, but then someone else died and was bawling all over again. I never expected to get so invested in the characters in this series. The gods interfere in their live so very much that it's insane. Most of them swear to good intentions, but they seem to make situations worse, more than not. Their help only ever seems to actually help when a human has bullied them into providing it-much like Quick Ben does to Hood and Paran's tirade to Nightchill.
There were some extremely disturbing scenes in this book. The Tenescowri... I need say no more. The amount of death didn't seem as bad as what happened on the level of Deadhouse Gates, but there was still quite a lot of it. Especially during the battle of Capustan and the liberation of Coral. The end of what happened at Coral was even more sad for me than what happened to Coltaine at the end of Deadhouse Gates when they finally make it to Aren.
I can't help but wonder if Fiddler and Kalam will learn of what happened to the Bridgeburners and Whiskeyjack...
I can't wait to read the next book. These books can be pretty black, but they aren't total despair. Toc and Gruntle's conversation after Itkovian's funeral, Quick Ben and Paran's visit to Moon's Spawn, Hetan meeting Onos Toolan and the epilogue in Darujhistan show me that. I have hope that they will hold out, yet. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
He’d thought he had five years left—now he has less than one. With fifty thousand refugees, a bastard son, and an ex-fiaSynopsis:
Gavin Guile is dying.
He’d thought he had five years left—now he has less than one. With fifty thousand refugees, a bastard son, and an ex-fiancée who may have learned his darkest secret, Gavin has problems on every side. All magic in the world is running wild and threatens to destroy the Seven Satrapies.
Worst of all, the old gods are being reborn, and their army of color wights is unstoppable. The only salvation may be the brother whose freedom and life Gavin stole sixteen years ago.
What an amazing sequel! And that freaking ending! I am kilt!
Over and over the unexpected happened! When I expected the characters to do one thing, they went totally left and did something else and blew my damn mind! That scene with the prisoner? I don't think I will ever forget that. You know, I should have a lot to say considering just how much happened in this book, but I just can't get over the OMGWTFBBQ of it all. I will just say that I was amazed. I've come to hate a few characters (looking at you, Liv!) to pratically worshipping a few (I love you, Ironfist!) and seriously rooting for others (go Kip! Go Gavin! Go Karris! Go Teia!) and not entirely sure of the roles others will be playing just as yet, but having some idea.
I cannot wait for book 3. Who is the Lightbringer? Is it the most obvious seeming character? Even if it is, that would be all kinds of awesome. Will Zymun die? God I hope so. Will power hungry, bitter bitch Liv do the stupid thing that I'm certain the Color Prince is offering her? Will Ironfist survive? (I'll cry so much if something happens to him!) Will Gavin escape? (view spoiler)[The Prism is dead, Dazen isn't! Who is the next Prism?! Janus Borig said it isn't Kip, so who the hell will it be?! (hide spoiler)] Now that Andross is feeling hale and hearty again (damn that knife!) wtf is he going to do? Subjugate the Spectrum? Kill the White? Scary shit is going to happen!
Gimme book four! I needs it! Damn you 2014! *shakes fist*["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that pSynopsis:
Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that preserves a tenuous peace. But Prisms never last, and Guile knows exactly how long he has left to live: Five years to achieve five impossible goals.
But when Guile discovers he has a son, born in a far kingdom after the war that put him in power, he must decide how much he's willing to pay to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.
I do believe that this is going to be a new favorite series of mine. So many secrets and twists and turns and I have no idea who I truly want to root for. The truth about Gavin was shocking. Probably I should have seen that coming. When we first met the prisoner, I was sure I knew who it was down there. I was wrong. So that scene where we see them together for the first time nearly made me fall out of my chair. Seriously?! I can't even...
And it just goes to show how much of a mess Gavin has made for himself. Not to mention the messes that prisoner has made for him. I really wanted to dislike Gavin, but the more I saw of him, the more I began to feel he's actually a good man. A good man that has done (and still does) horrible things in order to keep his secrets, but still a good man. The only thing that I'm not certain of is why he wanted to be Prism in the first place. He doesn't even seem to like it very much. Perhaps he has some larger goal that all of this was for. If so, I badly want to know what it is. Right now, I'm betting that it's some good, selfless thing. I'm hoping so because Brent Week's has really made me believe in this guy despite the horrors he's committed in order to meet his goal....more
For years he has endured the endless trials and triumphs of a man whose skill and power could not be restrained. Battling ancient enemies, foSynopsis:
For years he has endured the endless trials and triumphs of a man whose skill and power could not be restrained. Battling ancient enemies, forging new alliances, and confronting the corruption within his own land, Gaius Octavian became a legendary man of war—and the rightful First Lord of Alera.
But now, the savage Vord are on the march, and Gaius must lead his legions to the Calderon Valley to stand against them—using all of his intelligence, ingenuity, and furycraft to save their world from eternal darkness.
I have truly loved the end to this series. I've loved the series as a whole, but this was a good ending. Seriously, things just seemed so hopeless, but then another brilliant, insane construct born of Tavi's mind would work and give everyone hope. In the end, he also brings them victory and a whole lot of change. But the Realm must change in order to survive and Tavi has been learning that over the years. I think he can do it. Change the Realm and get it to regrow and prosper again, only in a different and more improved direction. Seriously, I love Tavi. Jim Butcher sure knows how to get me with the male leads he creates. Tavi is just so damned smart and unconventional. I think it was a smart move starting Tavi out down this road way back in The Furies of Calderon. I never thought it would have lead him here. But he spent his whole life using his brain to do things others had to do with barely a thought and it sooooooo paid off. Boy did it ever pay off.
So much happened in this last book. I don't want to say much because there were just so many surprises. The outcome, shouldn't be a surprise. It was the journey there that was. I really came to love many of the characters in this series and man am I going to miss them, but I will so be re-reading this series again sometime. It's too good not to. Especially considering it had me staying up every night that I was reading until 3am or later knowing damn well I had to go to sleep in order to get up and go to work in about 2-3 hours.
Big thanks to Jim Butcher for creating Tavi and allowing me to watch him come up in a world that rejected him and make so many people better than they ever imagined they could be....more
In the fifth Codex Alera novel, Tavi is the recognized heir to the throne. When armistice with the Canim ends, and he and his legions take thSynopsis:
In the fifth Codex Alera novel, Tavi is the recognized heir to the throne. When armistice with the Canim ends, and he and his legions take the Canim in Alera home, they discover that the Vord, hostile to Aleran and Canim alike, have ravaged Cane, and now the former foes must fight the common enemy. Meanwhile, Alera struggles to rebuild after civil war, but that doesn’t stop intrigues among the power-players. Perhaps the Vord attacking with the Alerans’ they-thought-unique weapon, furycrafting, will. A treat for action fans and series followers.
Man, oh, man. My heart is broken and then lifted up and put back together in this one. I cannot believe what these characters survive. One has fallen, though and I will miss him. I really will.
The Vord are back and the Realm is in severe peril. Tavi has no idea about what's going on at home because he and the First Aleran are escorting Varg, Nasaug and the Free Aleran to Canea so that the Canim can go home to fight back against the Vord. Once they get there, though, things are obviously much worse than they had ever thought they would be. Upon arriving at Molvar, Tavi and the others are told by the Pack there that all of the other ranges in Canea have fallen to the Vord. All that remains is the range of Shuara. Tavi and those with him end up being taken captive by the Shuaran Warmaster, Lararl and thing get really crazy from there. Tavi manipulates Lararl into letting them go so that they can help them against the Vord. Then he, Kitai, Max, Varg, Anag and a few others set out to hunt a Vord queen. Tavi's plan doesn't go quite the way he wants it to, but man that guy is smart. I freaking love Tavi and the way he thinks, but they show that bitch what for. And make one hell of an escape from Canea-and take what's left of the Canim with them. Those were some scary scenes, but I loved reading them. Love seeing Tavi being a hero. Love seeing Kitai's love for him and Maximus's dedication. It's so amazing the faith, trust and hope they have in him. It can be daunting, but it always manages to give Tavi strength when he's feeling insecure and low.
Meanwhile, back in the Realm of Alera, shit just got real and the Vord have seriously taken over. What they're up to and the help they have in it being done is the real issue. The Vord are bad enough on their own without people to help them. I'm just glad that not all of those helpers were willing. It would be so much better if a certain High Lady wasn't one of the biggest helpers of all. I hate that woman and want her dead, but she's still one of my favorite villains.
While Sextus is trying to hit the Vord where it will hurt, he's got Isana off in Antillus trying to broker a peace between the Alerans and the icemen so that the Antillan and Phyrigan legions can march south. And he's got Amara and Bernard off on a covert mission to discover how the Vord are doing something they really shouldn't be able to do. Things seem pretty hopeless for those two, but thanks to some amazing thinking, they rescue quite a few Citizens. Seriously, that was awesome. Amara still has hard feelings towards Sextus over the events in Kalare, but the Vord are a serious threat and they accept the mission. Despite all of the death they have to witness to get their information, they do it and do even more. Serious kudos to those two. And really big kudos to Isana. It turns out that the icemen really aren't so bad after all. Isana went so very far to secure the start of the peace. The biggest obstacle was Raucus himself. The end of that duel was so awesome, man. Scary as hell, but awesome and I respect Isana so much. What Raucus told her about why he decided to believe in her was moving. I love the letters he gave her, too. Now I know why the Aquitaines turned against Gaius. At least for Attis, it was because of what happened to Septimus. Invidia it seems, was just a woman scorned. *smh*
I'm jumping right into the next book because I have to see what happens. There's a new First Lord and he seems to truly want to do what's best for the Realm, but what will happen when Tavi returns? He has no idea what's been going on at home. Just wait until they dock. Talk about coming home to a nightmare......more
In his acclaimed Codex Alera novels, bestselling author Jim Butcher has created a fascinating world in which the powerful forces of nature taSynopsis:
In his acclaimed Codex Alera novels, bestselling author Jim Butcher has created a fascinating world in which the powerful forces of nature take physical form. For millennia, the people of Alera have used their unique bond with these elementals for protection. Now, as enemies become allies, and friends become bitter foes, a danger beyond reckoning looms. . . .
Man, oh man do I love this series! Tavi <3 He has grown so much from that undersized 15 y/o in Furies of Calderon to where he is now. He still makes mistakes and ends up in impossible situations, but that amazing brain of his manages to get him out of some seriously sticky situations. But he never hesitates to be the first one in the fray. The things Tavi will do for the realm and his friends never fail to awe me. I can't wait for him to get even stronger.
He was pissed when he learned the truth. He was also excited and very, very afraid. And yet, when he could have continued to hide his identity, he announced himself and put a traitor in his place. I loooooovvvvvveeeeedddddd those last few chapters. I loved the whole book, but those last few chapters seriously did it for me.
While Tavi was out running around trying to save everyone, Amara and Bernard were off on an adventure with Sextus to save the people of Kalare. Only.... Things turned out to be quite different. And Amara got her heart broken. It seems this will give her a chance to be with Bernard more often. Here's hoping something good happens for those two.
The biggest thing for me was how I've come to truly love Fidelias as a character. I hated him in book one for doing what he did to Amara and for what happened at Second Calderon. He does a lot here. I know it will come back to get him and I'm afraid to read it. Maybe, just maybe, he will pull through?
I worry about what the Aquitaines will do next. Lady Aquitaine has been hanging around the First Aleran camp too much. That will likely change now, but I don't like how much she's been around. She's already been plotting against Tavi and then Crassus. Who will she plot against next? And she sure seems rather involved with her husband coming to power. He's dangerous, but I worry about her more. Most of the ideas seem to come from her. It's scary how devious that bitch is.
Tavi has managed to work something out with the Canim now. I can't wait to see what happens next, though it's going to be scary to read. I just know it....more
The power-hungry High Lord of Kalare has launched a rebellion against the aging First Lord, Gaius Sextus, who with the loyal forces of AleraSynopsis:
The power-hungry High Lord of Kalare has launched a rebellion against the aging First Lord, Gaius Sextus, who with the loyal forces of Alera must fight beside the unlikeliest of allies—the equally contentious High Lord of Aquitaine.
Meanwhile, young Tavi of Calderon joins a newly formed legion under an assumed name even as the ruthless Kalare unites with the Canim, bestial enemies of the realm whose vast numbers spell certain doom for Alera. When treachery from within destroys the army's command structure, Tavi finds himself leading an inexperienced, poorly equipped legion—the only force standing between the Canim horde and the war-torn realm.
At the School for Good and Evil, failing your fairy tale is not an option.
Welcome to the School for Good and Evil, where best friends SophieSynopsis:
At the School for Good and Evil, failing your fairy tale is not an option.
Welcome to the School for Good and Evil, where best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime.
With her glass slippers and devotion to good deeds, Sophie knows she'll earn top marks at the School for Good and join the ranks of past students like Cinderella, Rapunzel, and Snow White. Meanwhile, Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks and wicked black cat, seems a natural fit for the villains in the School for Evil.
The two girls soon find their fortunes reversed—Sophie's dumped in the School for Evil to take Uglification, Death Curses, and Henchmen Training, while Agatha finds herself in the School for Good, thrust among handsome princes and fair maidens for classes in Princess Etiquette and Animal Communication.
But what if the mistake is actually the first clue to discovering who Sophie and Agatha really are . . . ?
The School for Good and Evil is an epic journey into a dazzling new world, where the only way out of a fairy tale is to live through one.
I give this 4.5 stars.
I really liked this. It was a bit overlong, but I found it enjoyable. I think it shouldn't have taken quite so long for Sophie and Agatha to realize their true natures, but that just goes to illustrate how some people just don't know themselves at all. They see only skin deep, even when looking at themselves, not to mention others.
I knew from the beginning that Sophie belonged in Evil School. I wasn't sure about Agatha because she seemed liked she could fit in at either school. She was a naturally good person, but she had her moments of darkness. Those moments were usually directed at herself, though she wasn't too nice to Tedros in the beginning because she felt he would come between her and Sophie. He did, but not in the way that she was thinking.
It was fun watching the two of them evolve and reveal their true selves. Sophie sure lied to herself thinking she was good. And Agatha lied to herself thinking she must be evil. And all of this was based on the way they looked. It was the same for the people around them once they arrived at the schools. I don't know why Tedros and Agatha couldn't see what was right in front of them when he kept choosing Agatha during all of those challenges. It was like they had no idea why. That was too funny to me.
Despite Sophie's evilness, I couldn't help but root for her. She really wasn't a nice person deep down, but dammit, I wanted to see Evil win this time. The way things turned out shocked me. I wasn't expecting that at all. What I want to know now, though, is if there is going to be a sequel or not. With the way things ended, there are some unanswered questions that really need to be answered.
Overall, the lesson learned here is that Good and Evil aren't what you are, they're what you do. In the end, Sophie managed to prove this. I just hope she can keep to the path she seems to have chosen now. But will Agatha get her Happy Ending? Things did end somewhat happily, but things could be better, at least for Agatha. Not sure about Sophie. She seems to have come to her senses, but will it be enough?...more
HARRY DRESDEN — WIZARD Lost Items Found. Paranormal Investigations. Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates. No Love Potions, Endless Purses, orSynopsis:
HARRY DRESDEN — WIZARD Lost Items Found. Paranormal Investigations. Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates. No Love Potions, Endless Purses, or Other Entertainment.
Harry Dresden’s faced some pretty terrifying foes during his career. Giant scorpions. Oversexed vampires. Psychotic werewolves. All par for the course for Chicago’s only professional wizard.
But in all of Harry’s years of supernatural sleuthing, he’s never faced anything like this: the spirit world’s gone postal. All over Chicago, ghosts are causing trouble—and not just of the door-slamming, ‘boo’- shouting variety. These ghosts are tormented, violent, and deadly.
Someone—or something—is stirring them up to wreak unearthly havoc. But why? And why do so many of the victims have ties to Harry? If Harry doesn’t figure it out soon, he could wind up a ghost himself....
Wow oh wow. Jim Butcher punched me in the gut with this one. The Dresden Files books always have me hanging on by the skin of my fingertips feeling like I'm going to plunge into a pit of neverending hell because damn! Harry just cannot catch a break! Sometimes, he gets a happy for now ending. This time? Not so much. Read it and you will know what I mean.
The book starts out with Harry on a case with his friend Michael as they try to subdue a ghost. Apparently, the two of them have been chasing down rogue ghosts for about two weeks. When they end up in the NeverNever to try to keep her from crossing back into the real world, they end up being found by Harry's fairy godmother, Leanansidhe. This is not a nice woman and Harry has a lot of trouble with her throughout the entire book. She helps him at times, but only so that she can get him healthy and whole and completely to herself. Most of the time, she works against him. Sometimes, it really seems like it sucks to be Harry Dresden.
While on their case, Harry and Michael are led to believe that the big bad going after them and other members of the S.I. team that worked with them on a case a few months prior was the ghost of a demon that Michael had "killed" with his God sword. They try to figure out if the demon is acting on its own or if someone is manipulating it. Things turn out to be so much worse than they seem. Added on to all of this, Bianca seems to finally be ready to get her revenge on Harry. She invites him to a party as a representative of the White Council to witness her being elevated to becoming a member of the Red Court. Harry figures he can find whomever is aiding the Nightmare at the party. At first, he doesn't want to go. He wants nothing to do with vampires. Unfortunately for Harry, Susan is there when he receives the invitation and she really wants to go. Harry is adamant about neither of them going. However, he has no choice at one point once he realizes the person he's looking for may be there. So, he goes with Michael in tow only for things to go so horribly wrong. Not only is his fairy godmother there, but so is Susan. And she's there uninvited. At this point, things really get insane and I just kept seeing Bad, Bad Things coming. And man do they ever.
I honestly couldn't figure out how Harry was going to get himself out of this one. After every tight spot he squeezed through, he got stuck in an even smaller one. He eventually makes it through (barely) and not without major loss. At the end of the book, Harry is not in the Best Place Ever. I don't think he will be able to get past this easily. I can only guess at what those vamps did to him while they had him. No wonder he's having nightmares. Still, Harry was bad ass. I love him. Even when he tries to take the blame for everything on himself. That man is incredibly good at carrying guilt around. I can only imagine what Susan's decision will do to him. I can't really blame her for that, though. That was a lose-lose situation all around. Still, see what being a nosy reporter gets you into? Both she and Harry should have listened to each other.
I did like the introductions of Michael and Thomas. Michael is preachy in a way that isn't annoying. He's so loyal and dependable that I just can't dislike the guy. And Thomas, despite what he did (that really was awful), I still like him. I'm finding myself interested in seeing him again. I'm pretty sure he'll pop back around, though.
The one thing I really wanted to know about that we didn't get an answer on is whatever is going on with the S.I. Unit. Stallings implied a lot, but we got no confirmation there. He was really adamant that the book he retrieved for Harry be made to disappear. After everything Harry went through during all of this mess, did he remember about that? It wasn't mentioned again once Harry found what he found. So, what is going on there? Will we find out in the next book? Will we hear more about (view spoiler)[the war between the wizards and the vamps, too? (hide spoiler)] How much trouble has Harry gotten himself into with the White Council this time? At this point, it doesn't seem like Harry gives a damn. I hope he gets himself back on his feet!["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
That’s what she’d like to know. Demon summoner and now a consultant for the FBI, Kara Gillian has spent the past sSynopsis:
Who can Kara Gillian trust?
That’s what she’d like to know. Demon summoner and now a consultant for the FBI, Kara Gillian has spent the past several months in the demon realm training while recovering from the treachery of the demonic lord Rhyzkahl. Yet though the torment and betrayal she suffered at his hands continues to plague her, she’s not about to let that slow her down.
Kara returns to Earth to search for a fellow summoner being held by allies of Rhyzkahl. Aiding in the hunt are Kara’s friends, FBI agents Ryan Kristoff and Zack Garner. However, Kara and Zack know Ryan’s true identity—though he himself does not—and questions of loyalty threaten to tear apart their previously close-knit group. Rhyzkahl’s machinations run deeper than they could have ever imagined, and the search for the missing summoner takes on a desperate edge while dangers from ancient demon oaths loom and enemies increase in power and numbers.
Armed with her skills, wit, and attitude, it is up to Kara to save her friends and her world.
The price of failure will be her soul.
For some reason, I thought that I was going to have a difficult time getting into this. I guess because I'd been reading practically nothing but M/M books of varying genres for the past few months. It's difficult to be in the head of a female MC after that. It turned out, though, that I had no problem with getting hooked into this one. I thought it would take me a long time to read because this books isn't exactly short, but it didn't even take 24 hours. I guess I was ready to be back in Kara's world.
A lot of the book is spent trying to get Idris back. The good thing is that they weren't just sitting around twiddling their thumbs. They chased down leads and definitely had other issues to deal with during it all. Kara's identity issues with that whole Rowan thing came back into play in a major way and got resolved in a very surprising way near the end of the book. I so didn't see that coming. And while she's been helped, the consequences of who that help came from could come back to bite them all in the ass later. I hope not, but when demon lords are involved, practically anything goes.
There were a lot of issues with Zack this time around. Zack is usually the caretaker of the group, but we see in this book that all that taking care of everyone has been taking a toll on Zack. Not to mention his remaining tie to Rhyzkahl. Kara ends up flipping out on him about that a couple of times. It takes a little while, but she begins to see that Zack's situation truly is complicated and she does a very good job of supporting him through something very difficult for him to do and deal with. I hope he gets better, but it's going to take some time, definitely. There was some strain in Zack's relationship with Jill as well, but Kara seems to have helped them deal with that. Thank goodness!
Another person to worry about is Tessa. Kara is now sure that something was done to Tessa years ago and now she has confirmation. Part of that confirmation I expected. The other part makes me want to gag a bit. Plus, I don't believe that Tessa's sudden trip to CO was a coincidence. I feel like something is going on there and so I'm really worried about her.
Of course, there's the whole Ryan/Szerain thing to worry about, too. There's been a major development on that front, so he's someone to keep an eye on.
In good news, Kara's got three new members in her posse. I wonder if Paul and Bryce will stay in Kara's house whenever they're all on Earth. And what about Sonny? I think being around the gang would be good for him, too.
I hate what Idris went through. I wonder just how much it will change him.
A person I've grown more interested in is Kadir. He may creepy, but he's pretty rigid about the rules and honor in his own way. We got to see the reason behind that. If he wasn't, he'd probably be loads worse than he already is. I wonder if he would ever abandon his allies if they don't stop fucking shit up with the flows/nodes the way they have been doing? How much more rule breaking will he put up with?
And of course, I wonder what will happen to Rhyzkahl now as a result of what Zack did? Will he be able to pull himself back together? He's got to be feeling as bad off as Zack is. (view spoiler)[And what about his blade? He dropped it and it Jesral picked it up. I don't see him giving it back to Rhyzkahl. (hide spoiler)] I wonder how that will change things for our four baddies?
And not to be forgotten is my lovely Mzatal. Will he be able to keep from withdrawing the way that he did for so long all those years ago? Will he and Kara be able to find a way for him to still be open without letting all of that anger get away from him like it did during that rescue? I sure hope so. I adore Mzatal and I want him and Kara to be happy together.
Last but not least is Kara herself. There were a few times where she almost gave in to her old self pity, but she managed to get past it. I felt proud of her several times. She put her friends first as often as she could. She still had a few temper tantrums, but she didn't let it fester. She's grown quite a bit since what happened with Rhyzkahl. I hope she gets to kick all the ass in the next book, too.
Out here in the Fringes, there is only one rule: Blood calls to blood. She has done the unthinkable: died so she might continue to live. NowSynopsis:
Out here in the Fringes, there is only one rule: Blood calls to blood. She has done the unthinkable: died so she might continue to live. Now Allie, the reluctant teenage vampire who was cast out of Eden, and Zeke, the human boy who loves her, must attempt to save the world from a deadly new strain of plague. In order to do so, they must first hunt down the monster who holds the promise of the cure—and Allie’s beloved mentor—in his sadistic grip…. Joined by Allie’s blood brother, Jackal, this unlikely posse of companions will brave a landscape stalked by raiders, rabids, and rogue vampires. But even if they survive, they’re bound for the Inner city, and a vicious showdown that will test their bonds in ways they never expected. It may just be that becoming undead was the easy part. Confronting the horrors of Allie’s awakening hunger, her growing feelings for Zeke, and the uncertainties of their future is going to be the ultimate challenge.
Lily Yu’s world changed when she met Rule Turner, known to the human world as “that werewolf prince.” It’s been eight months since everyone eSynopsis:
Lily Yu’s world changed when she met Rule Turner, known to the human world as “that werewolf prince.” It’s been eight months since everyone else’s world changed, too—when the Turning hit. That shifting of the realms has magic seeping back into the world in quantities unseen since the hot news story concerned a pair of human babes raised by wolves who went on to found a new city: Rome.
Lily is a homicide cop turned FBI agent. She works for a special Unit within the MCD—that’s the Bureau’s Magical Crimes Division. Lily became a cop to stop the monsters , though it was human monsters she had in mind at the time. These days, the perps she tracks may be a lot more—or a lot less--than human.
In BLOOD MAGIC, Lily and Rule are faced with their most dangerous opponent yet, one the law can’t touch. One who can’t be killed. One whose like hasn’t been seen in our world since long before those wolves fostered Romulus and Remus.
Oh, one more thing about BLOOD MAGIC: Grandmother is back.
Those of you who haven’t read the previous books in my World of the Lupi series may be scratching your head about now. Someone’s grandmother shows up and you’re supposed to get all tingly? You might be more interested in some of the other characters in BLOOD MAGIC, like the assassin. Or the dragon. Or the ancient, undying enemy willing to wait for centuries to achieve what really matters.
I loved this one even more than the last. It took me a while to come back to this series after I read the first two books last year, but now that I have, I am soooooo glad that I did. This book held a lot of revelations for Lily. Revelations that she did not initially react very well to.
Lily and Rule are back home in San Diego for a change and getting ready to have a baby shower/baby party for Cynna and Cullen. First, though, Lily has to check out a scene of an accident in which one of the drivers says she saw a giant snake. Apparently, people have been seeing all kinds of things all over the city and Lily has been called out constantly to use her Gift to check for magic. She never finds any, but she has to look. Not long after Lily leaves the scene we see a man giggling in an alley and seemingly talking to himself about causing that accident. In some way, magic was involved.
Turns out that the man and the whatever he was talking to are interested in some revenge. To make sure they can get it, they decide to start by taking out someone that can see the man for what he really is-Cullen. That scene was hard to read. My heart was pounding because I was so worried. I honestly wasn't sure if he would pull through. Eileen Wilks seems to love nearly killing Cullen off. Here's hoping he'll continue to survive if she does it again. Apparently, the bad guy and the scary being he's working with want Cullen out of the way because a sorcerer could be dangerous when it comes to stopping them. They also want Lily out of the way. That, however, is partly to cause Lily's Grandmother Li Lei to suffer.
Lily doesn't know this, at first, but she's worried that her missing Grandmother and her companion might in some way be related to what happened to Cullen. So she goes to talk to the only one that might know where her Grandmother is-Sam the black dragon. In talking to Sam, she finds Li Qin and learns a story about events that took place over 300 years ago. And in learning that, she learns something about herself that she never knew. And in learning that, she ends up under a binding because of a treaty put in place during the Great War that affects her because of something in Li Lei's past. It makes Lily furious that she can't talk about things, but she and Rule find ways to work around it. They learn that the enemy is a Chimei that supposedly cannot be killed. The have quite the time trying to catch her considering how good she is at mind magic. At least Lily can't be affected by it because of her Gift. The big fight comes down Lily and the Chimei in a most unexpected way. That's how Lily really realizes that her heritage is true. And an semi-ongoing storyline from book 2 is finally laid to rest as well. I loved the way Wilks solved that.
Lily and Rule continue to be an awesome couple, but they aren't without their problems. Especially when a cop that Lily used to be involved with gets in on this case. Rule discovers that despite the fact that Lupi aren't supposed to be sexually possessive, he is able to feel jealous with regards to other men in Lily's life. Luckily, there's no issue here with Lily being torn over her feelings, just the matter of her having some unresolved issues. But she makes it clear that it's Rule she's with and she works on understanding exactly why it is that she agreed to marry Rule when he asked her. And even more surprising, it was her mother that got her to truly realize it. That was a nice scene.
Caleb is a man with a singular interest in revenge. Kidnapped as a young boy and sold into slavery by a power-hungry mobster, he has thoughtSynopsis:
Caleb is a man with a singular interest in revenge. Kidnapped as a young boy and sold into slavery by a power-hungry mobster, he has thought of nothing but vengeance. For twelve years he has immersed himself in the world of pleasure slaves searching for the one man he holds ultimately responsible. Finally, the architect of his suffering has emerged with a new identity, but not a new nature. If Caleb is to get close enough to strike, he must become the very thing he abhors and kidnap a beautiful girl to train her to be all that he once was.
Eighteen-year-old Olivia Ruiz has just woken up in a strange place. Blindfolded and bound, there is only a calm male voice to welcome her. His name is Caleb, though he demands to be called Master. Olivia is young, beautiful, naïve and willful to a fault. She has a dark sensuality that cannot be hidden or denied, though she tries to accomplish both. Although she is frightened by the strong, sadistic, and arrogant man who holds her prisoner, what keeps Olivia awake in the dark is her unwelcome attraction to him.
WARNING: This book contains very disturbing situations, dubious consent, strong language, and graphic violence.
More in-depth thoughts to come.
But really. Whoa.
This book is so wrong. We start off getting Caleb's POV and we see him stalking a girl. A girl he's going to kidnap in order to use as a tool for revenge. First, he's just watching her, but when she unknowingly cements herself as being the perfect girl for him to train, he takes her. But not without first meeting her when she's being harassed by some random guy on the street. She thinks he's her savior. Too bad she soon comes to realize that he's her jailor.
From the start, Livvie is terrified. Some strange men have taken her and one obviously wants to hurt her after she fought back once she initially woke up. It's her worst nightmare come to life. Anyone would be terrified in her situation. And it's all made worse when she finds out that the one that had her taken is the man that she encountered on that fateful day.
From there, Livvie endures some harsh ordeals. She's spanked, fondled and has some of her first sexual experiences ever all at the hands of her captor. Only, she thinks that maybe he isn't so bad. He seems to want her, after all. He seems to care. Still, when the opportunity presents itself, she runs. I can't blame her for that. But it took her right into an even worse situation. I was really scared for her when she woke up in that bathroom and those gang members were trying to rape her. It's hard to say if she was lucky or not that Caleb showed up and got her out of there. She nearly died. But her life really didn't improve by much after that. She finally learns why Caleb took her and she is not happy about that. She's devastated as she should be. I felt so bad for her. Especially after everything that she's gone through with her mother. And still her life seemed like it just couldn't go right. It was like her mother laid a jinx on her by calling her a whore all the time. It seemed that it was where she was destined to end up.
Caleb for his part is a bad man. And yet, because of his POVs, I couldn't hate him. If not for those, I would have hated his guts. I couldn't because I knew he cared. I knew he didn't completely want to be doing what he was doing. Still, that didn't keep him from enjoying it and getting off on what he was putting Livvie through. But it was so obvious that he was falling in love even if he didn't realize it himself. He knew he felt something, but he never would have equated it with love. He's a monster and he knows it. What does he know about love? Not a damn thing. But he was starting to feel it and that mattered. It just sucked that it didn't stop him from doing what he knew was wrong. Make no mistake about it, he knew it was wrong. But he cared. I don't know if that makes the situation better or worse. For Livvie, it was a bit of both.
I really enjoyed this. It made my heart damn near pound out of my chest because I was terrified over what would happen to Livvie. Especially during that near rape by those gang members. I was proud of her, though. She was obviously falling for her captor, but she still got the hell out of there when she could. It didn't improve her situation in any way, but she tried. I kept waiting for Caleb to take her and make a run for it, but he didn't. I understood why, but how could someone that's been through what he is train someone else to do the same thing? For Caleb, choosing Livvie was both the right and wrong choice. I couldn't put this down, though. It was despicable, but the sweet moments could be so freaking sweet. I couldn't just get angry and stay that way. I wanted the two of them to be together somehow. Since it didn't happen her, I had to find out just what would happen and when we find out that Rafiq is on his way to Mexico to check Caleb's progress, I picked up book 2 with the quickness.
There are a lot of reasons not to read this book, but there are plenty reasons for you to give it a shot. It's scary, but there is love her. A really fucked up love, but it's there. It's worth reading. ...more
She won't rest until she's sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.
Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would changeSynopsis:
She won't rest until she's sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.
Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that's all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.
Her father was right. The monsters are real.
To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn't careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies.
Another YA that I've totally fallen in love with. I've been on a serious YA roll lately. Hopefully, I can keep it going for a few more books.
I really, really like Ali and Cole. Even after the tragedy she lived through, Ali bounced back as best as she could and eventually, she began to thrive. She found her calling in life and fell into it with gusto and she was so badass when doing it, too. I was glad that she found a place for herself despite everything and that she has something important to do.
Cole is awesome. And totally alpha. He gives orders and expects them to be followed. Even when it comes to dating. Once we get to know him better, it's no wonder as to why other students are so terrified of him. But we also learn he's a really good guy with an extremely big protective streak and that he values the people he cares about over himself.
And boy do these two have serious chemistry. From the first time that they lock eyes, they see themselves together. And get totally freaked out. It seems that each morning, the first time they look into each others eyes, they get a glimpse of something. And despite how weird that is, they can't seem to stay away from each other. And when they do kiss? They get utterly lost in the other. Talk about no PDA in public for these two.
Anyway, Ali learns a lot about the monsters her dad has always seen after she loses her family. She learns how to fight them and finds out that there's something a bit different from her as opposed to the other slayers. Ali seems to be quite powerful. I hope the journal she found can reveal more answers for her. I wonder who wrote it.
She also learns that it's not just the zombies that she has to worry about. There are other humans that go after the zombies, though they do so for entirely different reasons than Cole's group does. I can't stand these people. And when we find out the truth about them, I wanted to punch somebody. What I really want to know is why Justin contacted Cole at the end. Surely he doesn't care what happens to Ali. He sure didn't seem to before. That guy really is a snake and I can't stand his sister.
Even as Ali gains some really good new friends, she loses some as well. The days of loss are not over, but at least she still has Cole, Kat and the others. I hope they all make it through, but I know someone else will probably be lost in the next book as well. I'll probably cry again. I hope things work out for Kat (love her!) and Frosty and for Reeve and Bronx as well. I get why Bronx did what he did, though. Poor Reeve.
I am so looking forward to the sequel. Especially after that big fight at the end....more
Omfg! This book lives up to they hype! I have just stayed up to 1am when I have to be up at 5:30am to go to work because I could not stop reading thisOmfg! This book lives up to they hype! I have just stayed up to 1am when I have to be up at 5:30am to go to work because I could not stop reading this awesome book.
It was so very easy to read and I loved the characters. They were all amazing.
Alina was an instant like as a heroine for me. Considering the last book I read, the heroine was awesome in her power, but she made the worst decisions ever and frustrated me so much I wanted to beat her ass, Alina was a breath of fresh air. That girl has one hell of a smart mouth on her and she was funny! She was naive and gullible yes, but who the hell wouldn't have believed everything that the Darkling told them? I would have fallen for it, too. I know what it's like not to fit in and to do just about anything for the first person/people to pay attention to you. Especially male attention. He played that real well. However, when the truth was presented to her and it was undeniable, she did pretty much the only thing she could have-she ran. I admired her for that. I even loved her when she was pining after Mal because she didn't come across as annoying. Definitely love Alina.
I liked Mal a lot as well. Sure, at first, he's the easygoing, get things easily type of guy, but he cared about his friend. He changed after tragedy, but he was still a really good person. He was angry when reunited with Alina and when we learn why he changed so much, I can understand his anger. He went on a dangerous mission and the unthinkable happened. Then, he goes to the Little Palace and sees Alina looking all happy on the arm of another guy while he's been worried sick. The thing that really made me love Mal was that speech he makes a little later. Read the book, you'll know what I mean when you get there. There was something else he says near the end that made me love him all over again, too. He's definitely hawt hero material.
The Darkling. The Darkling. The Darkling. Oooohhhh, that man had me fooled! I can't even hate him for it. I totally fell for it and him in those early chapters. I loved the interaction between him and Alina. When the truth came out, I was stunned stupid. (view spoiler)[This is what I like in a villain. Darkling is why I fall for villains. Most of my favorite anime characters are villains or antiheroes. (hide spoiler)] I love the Darkling. I cannot wait to see him again. I was worried at first that this book would end this vein of the story and I wouldn't see him again, but no worries! I thought it'd be like other fantasy books I've read where the following books are from someone else's viewpoint, but it looks like we'll stick with these three as the main characters. Love it. I am in need of the second book asap so that I can be reunited with my Darkling.
The secondary characters were pretty good as well. Especially Genya and Ivan. I know, I know, I know with regards to those two, but I still like them anyway. (view spoiler)[I wonder if Genya was a spy the entire time. I wouldn't be surprised if that's why she was with Alina so often. (hide spoiler)] I won't be surprised if they show up in book 2 as well. Omg! Can't wait!
If this is the end of this series, I say that it makes for a good one. I ended up enjoying it more than I had expected, despite how much the characterIf this is the end of this series, I say that it makes for a good one. I ended up enjoying it more than I had expected, despite how much the character frustrated me in the first half of the book. I guess it was a lot like how they acted in the first book. The second half was much better. It seems to be the end of the series. I hope so. It ended on a good spot, even if it leaves some questions. I didn't feel like those questions had to be answered in some sort of absolute. It's an HEA (or as much of one as these characters can get, considering the situation), so I'd say it's safe to assume things work out for the best.
The book starts off with Theia's return to the human realm from Under via the demon summoning spell Haden and her friends perform. It progresses with Theia unable to control her demon urges to feed, but deciding not to speak with Haden or her friends about what she was dealing with. This frustrated me to no end. Considering everything that the group has been through, the least she could do was open her mouth and talk to someone. At least, she could have spoken with Haden. He knew better than anyone what she was dealing with. Yet, she made her problems so much worse by not saying anything. Students at her school were being drained and letting her jealousy lead her to believe it was Haden, she never really stopped to think about what she had been doing. Instead, she pushes Haden and basically accomplishes nothing in doing so. I wanted to smack her for that. I wanted to smack her for being too slow to realize she was luring those boys in, too. How could she not see that they were reacting to her in the same way that girls reacted to Haden? Seriously, how slow on the uptake can one person be? In the end of the story, she redeemed herself for me. She really stepped up and took responsibility. I was still annoyed that she was adamant about being broken up with Haden, though. Thank goodness he got through to that thick skull of hers.
As for Haden, I liked him quite a bit in this book. Yes, he should have told Theia what he had been planning. I know why he didn't, but it wasn't the smartest thing he ever did by not discussing that whole thing with her. Still, he was pretty awesome in this book.
Theia's friends also stepped up once again. Varnie most of all. Seeing things from the POVs of Donny and Amelia in the second part of the book was a nice touch. I enjoyed that scene on the beach with Amelia and Varnie just about the most out of this whole book. Save for the very end scene with Theia and Haden. That scene was a bit fade to black and left us wondering as to can they or cant they, but it was a sweet touch. I think it was a perfect spot to end the series on.
In the end, I was proud of Theia and Haden with the way they handled things. Theia was right that despite everything, Mara got exactly what she wanted all along. Ironic how that all worked out....more
I can't believe she did that. I can't believe she went there, but Jennifer Lynn Barnes went there and then some. I turned into a crying, snotty mess rI can't believe she did that. I can't believe she went there, but Jennifer Lynn Barnes went there and then some. I turned into a crying, snotty mess reading this book. There's a reason this is my second favorite shifter series and Barnes proved that so much while I was reading this book.
I don't even want to say too much because there's just too much that is too easy to spoil. Besides, just thinking about it makes me start crying again.
All I can say is, that the book picks up a few months after where Trial By Fire left off. At first, there's no trouble, but then that douchebag Shay (and no matter how much of a douche he is and how much I despise him, he's still a favorite villain. He was consistent.) calls a meeting of the Senate. While there, Bryn discovers there's a rabid killing humans around the No Man's Land of various territories. Shay tells them that this rabid is a female. Of course, all the male wolves, save Callum, want to go find this female and force her into joining their pack. This of course fills Bryn with dread, because the only female this can be is Maddy, who she allowed to leave her pack because of the crap that went down with Lucas. Bryn and Callum come up with the theory that they need to find Maddy first, so Bryn, Chase, Lake, Caroline and Jed set out to find her.
So very many things are revealed. Some incredibly shocking things. Barnes surprised me over and over again. And just when Bryn was resigned to having to do yet another horrible thing and sacrificing more of her humanity, she gets a break. The problem with the rabid is solved in a way no one expected to be possible. Too bad something even worse happened after that. That's when I started with the waterworks and pretty still haven't stopped. I have a feeling that I will tear up any time I think about this book.
Callum told Bryn before the hunt for Maddy that she would have to be human for this, but of course, he never told her what "this" was. And now, she can never forgive him. (view spoiler)[Shay may have gotten what he deserved and Dev is an alpha of his own pack now, but Chase (Omg I can't believe she did that!) and Jed are still dead, Bryn has lost her mate and Dev, too since he's no longer a part of her pack. (hide spoiler)] I know he kept it from her to keep her alive, but it's still so awful. I love Callum and I always will despite his manipulations. I know he loves Bryn, but she keeps getting her heart broken and I feel so terrible for her every single time. This was almost too much.
I suppose her Change was always meant to happen this way and this is why he kept her waiting, but I have to wonder what it cost him. He knows she feels nothing for him anymore. He was practically her father. He has to be hurting. Man, what I wouldn't do for Jennifer Lynn Barnes to write something from Callum's POV.
It is going to suuuuuuuucccccccccckkkkkkkkkk waiting for the fourth book. Seriously, I'm so anxious for it already. Honestly, I love this series, but it breaks my heart. I stayed up until 5am to finish reading the book and writing my review. The series is just so addictive and really good. But Jennifer Lynn Barnes, you are killing me.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Cassandra Palmer may be the all-powerful Pythia now, but that doesn’t mean people have stopped trying to kill her. Most of the supernatural pSynopsis:
Cassandra Palmer may be the all-powerful Pythia now, but that doesn’t mean people have stopped trying to kill her. Most of the supernatural power players don’t want the independent minded Cassie as chief clairvoyant—and they’ll stop at nothing to see her six feet under.
The Vampire Senate does support Cassie in her position, but their protection comes with a price: an alliance with the sexy master vampire Mircea, who has claimed Cassie as his own.
But even the vampires will have trouble keeping Cassie alive now that the self-styled god Apollo, the source of the Pythia’s power, has it in for her in a big way. To save her life—and the world—Cassie’s going to have to face down her creator once and for all.
I loved this one all over again. It's my second favorite of the series after Curse the Dawn. A lot of that has to do with the large presence of Pritkin. I am steadily remembering why I love Pritkin so absolutely much. He's definitely still at the top of my book boyfriend list.
Things never seem to let up for Cassie. Sometimes I truly forget that there really hasn't been such a large passage of time in the world's timeline. Cassie is constantly traveling from one year to the next, so I often don't realize that there tends to be maybe a few days at most since the events of the last book. A lot of Cassie's crazy adventures seem to take place over the space of a week or two. It does make me wonder how she ever has time to recover from her injuries. Cassie should probably be dead already. Still, she forges ahead. She may still not want the power, but she's accepted now that she's got to use it. If there isn't a Pythia, the other side will win. As such, she knows that since she's stuck with the job, she has to do it. Better her than someone else set up to be the puppet of the Circle or the Senate. At least that way she can do her best to protect the ones she loves. She nearly screwed that up, but in the end, she pulls it off with an assist from Pritkin....more
Recently named the world’s chief clairvoyant, Cassandra Palmer still has a thorn in her side. As long as Cassie and a certain master vampire—Synopsis:
Recently named the world’s chief clairvoyant, Cassandra Palmer still has a thorn in her side. As long as Cassie and a certain master vampire—the sizzling-hot Mircea—are magically bound to each other, her life will never be her own…
The spell that binds them can only be broken with an incantation found in the Codex Merlini, an ancient grimoire. The Codex’s location has been lost in the present day, so Cassie will have to seek it out in the only place it can still be found—the past.
But Cassie soon realizes the Codex has been lost for a reason. The book is rumored to contain some seriously dangerous spells, and retrieving it may help Cassie to deal with Mircea, but it could also endanger the world…
Kate Daniels keeps the peace in Atlanta for the Order, humans caught between the vampire controlling People led by her biological father andSynopsis:
Kate Daniels keeps the peace in Atlanta for the Order, humans caught between the vampire controlling People led by her biological father and best kept secret, Roland, and the shape-shifter Pack, led by her mate-to-be Curran, the Lord of the Beasts. But her look-alike aunt Erra, Babylon's god of chaos and terror, has come to town controlling seven naked warriors: Deluge (flood water), Tremor (earth quake), Gale (hurricane wind), Torch (fire inferno), Venom (disease poison), Beast (animal monster), and Darkness (overpowering dread).
This is the one! This is the one that's my favorite book in the series. All kinds of hell breaks loose here, but we finally get what we've been waiting for in Kate and Curran's relationship, too. This is where they become one of my all-time favorite UF couples even though I'm extremely jealous that Kate gets to be with Curran. Lucky woman.
The book starts off with Kate waiting around her place in Savannah in her bra and panties for Curran to show up for the naked dinner she owed him after losing that bet during Magic Strikes. He never shows up. And boy does that ever piss Kate off. She feels she's been made a fool of and she no longer wants anything to do with him. Then she gets an incredibly bizarre case and things just snowball from there.
I love that Kate and Curran fight it out and finally, truly start down the road to getting it together. That first night was great. Then Kate messes it up in the morning. I don't think she truly understands until Aunt B spells things out for her later after an encounter with Erra (view spoiler)[who Kate has discovered is her aunt and is determined to stop (hide spoiler)]. Later, after Erra attacks the Pack at one of Clan Wolf's satellite houses and a disaster occurs, Curran tells Kate why he wants her to live in the Keep and about his past which makes it so important to him and she finally opens up about her past. And he accepts it. I loved him for that. To him, it's no big deal. He's chosen his mate and he isn't going to let her go.
When the big battle with Erra comes in the end, things don't go quite as well as they hoped, but our good guys win the day. Not without some consequences. Which end up leading to some of the Pack members doing some stupid shit. Once Curran is up and at 'em, though, he makes the Council explain themselves. He is not happy with the members of his Pack and I understand why. He's done so much for them over the last 15 years and when he chooses his mate, they try to get rid of her. In the end, though, Kate and Curran stay together and they are definitely my most favorite alpha couple. I'd forgotten why I loved them so much. Rereading the series sure has refreshed my memory.
I'd also forgotten what started the trouble between Andrea and Raphael. I get both sides of their argument, but I get why Raphael was so pissed. I know it takes a while for those two to get it back together, but I'm looking forward to seeing how they get back there.
I'm wondering if we'll see Naeemah, again. I can't imagine that she won't be back especially considering who hired her in the first place. I can't imagine Ilona introducing her and making someone with that kind of a presence a throwaway character.
I was pleased to meet Barabas and Jezebel again, too. I <3 Barabas. I get why Mahon says what he does to Kate, too, but I still want to smack him for it. It'd be nice if he came around. Maybe one of these days...["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more