Such a great book. Needed a re-read since I wasn't interested in any of my TBR ones.
Wilder and Satira are pure fire together. This was a great introduSuch a great book. Needed a re-read since I wasn't interested in any of my TBR ones.
Wilder and Satira are pure fire together. This was a great introduction to the Bloodhound world because we got a taste of just about everything. Hounds, Vampires, Ghouls, Whores, the requirements of the New Moon... I highly recommend that you pick and time and place without interruptions. I have also heard that significant others tend to enjoy the effect this book has on the reader....more
Publisher: Dorchester Publish Date: Out now How I got this book: Purchased
Fallen angels… They rule Moscow’s seedy underworld, promising untold pleasure to the females who dare to mate them. That promise – and Brends Duranov’s own raw sexual power – has hopefuls mobbing the velvet rope outside his elite club G2’s.
But Mischka Baran has no intention of hooking up with one of the Fallen. Not even after Brends gives her an unforgettable taste of the sin and seduction he can deliver with those wicked lips. She’s after information, not a stint as some Goblin’s toy of the month. What she doesn’t know is that with a sadistic killer carving up his brethren, Brends is playing for keeps, hunting the one woman whose bloodline can end the mayhem, whose bond can restore his lost wings. This blurb came from the author’s website here.
Back in August 2010 I had just finished reading Claire Delacroix’s Eyes of the Republic trilogy and was in the mood for more books that had apocalyptic settings and involved fallen angels when I found Bond with Me. It looked like it fit those requirements so I decided to give it a try. Well it certainly met those requirements and delivered more! Ms Marsh developed a really fascinating world that took some rather interesting twists on the reason for and what happened after the War in Heaven.
After the War in Heaven things drastically changed for the Fallen, like the insatiable desire to feel although they lost the capacity to create their own feelings. They could temporarily appease that need by feeling vicariously through a human, which required consuming part of the human’s soul through a bargain called a bond. But if they allowed the need to satisfy that hunger to rule them, they would become hunted and imprisoned rogues loosing all chance of redemption. Each Fallen did have a chance to return to heaven, which involved a special woman, however after thousands of years had passed none of them had regained their wings so they stopped believing. The loss of that hope caused more and more of the Fallen to succumb to their hunger. I will just say that Angelic politics certainly played a role in that…
Ms Marsh took a different approach with Bond with Me by including two couples in different stages of their relationships. One had been slowly building over years so was more of a friends to lovers while the other was closer to a physical relationship that turned into love. I enjoyed the dichotomy between the two because I think it highlighted just how dangerous stereotypes and hasty decisions can be. I also got to see just how determined the Fallen could be in their pursuit of one particular woman even with throngs of others clamoring for their attention. Each of the Fallen had their own distinct personalities with some more dominate then others but all of them would certainly be considered the Alpha type.
Brends was certainly something else. He was such a contradiction as he kept his word, played by the rules and yet seized every advantage to get what he wanted. The catch was that Mischka had to be willing in order for the bond between them to actually happen. Watching the interplay between Mischka, Brends, and his conscious as he maneuvered, manipulated and ultimately fell in love was very entertaining. Mischka made him work for every single thing he gained which I loved.
During my re-read for this review I was captivated all over again. It was great seeing that a couple of years and hundreds of books later I still had the exact same urge to rush out and find the next book. This time I can actually get His Dark Bond because it released this Tuesday.
Publisher: Samhain Publish Date: Out today How we got this book: From the author
Ophelia retired from life as a prostitute, but her new position is even more complicated. Managing the bloodhound manor in Iron Creek is difficult and time-consuming, a job she enjoys less with each passing day. Then there’s her inconvenient attraction to Hunter. The newly turned hound seems eager to enjoy her company, but wary of anything more intimate.
Having survived the violence of his first full moon out of a cage, Hunter isn’t looking forward to his first new moon. Ophelia offers to be the woman who sates his needs during the three long days of sexual fury, but he can’t abide the thought of hurting her in a state of mindless lust. Especially since she longs to settle into a respectable life, and his needs are anything but respectable.
Their mutual goal is simple: avoid entanglements. It’s a solid plan, at least until a vampire drug lord and a couple of nosy Guild representatives force them to work together to defend their friends and everything they hold dear–including each other.
Warning: Contains a mostly feral, vampire-hunting hero and a tough survivor of a heroine whose retired-hooker heart is more steel than gold. Also included: dangerous frontier intrigue, fancy brothels, mad-scientist weapons and a good dose of wicked loving in an alternate Wild West. This blurb came from the author’s website here.
MinnChica: I’ve been a huge fan of Moira Rogers for as long as I can remember, and one of the things I love most is the unique worlds they create. The Bloodhounds series is one of those worlds that is so different and special and I gobble up each new release. After reading about Hunter’s struggles in the first book, I couldn’t wait to see where Rogers’ would take his character. I absolutely loved the way Hunter still struggled with his new Bloodhound ways, but acclimated to everything.
E: Poor Hunter! My heart goes out to him. Unlike the other Bloodhounds who somewhat volunteered for the transformation even if they didn’t know what they were really getting into he was not given the option to volunteer. Nor was he transformed by the scientists with their established program to include mentorship but by a definite criminal and another person whose motives are questionable at best. Like MinnChica I have been sucked into this world from the first page. I really wanted to see how Hunter was going to survive now that he isn’t kept in a cage and what was going to happen to Ophelia. At the end of Wilder’s Mate there was a line about how Ophelia had changed which implied something happened to her that caused her emotional distress. Two wounded distrusting people paired up trying to find themselves and each other. That to me is a recipe for a very enjoyable read and Moira Rogers did not disappoint.
MinnChica: I couldn’t wait to see what would happen with Ophelia, the former whore turned house-mistress and Hunter the caged wild-thing who was turned against his will. These two had so much angst between the two of them, and yet their relationship was somewhat calm and soothing to them both. I wanted to smack Hunter on the head every time he turned his back on Ophelia, especially in the beginning of the story. I understood his reluctance, his fear of hurting her. Yet I wanted him to suck it up and trust in his new instincts.
E: Hunter’s refusal to trust himself was annoying but when you think about where he came from he was dealing with some extremely unfamiliar territory. He also never spent any of the crucial moon times with another person but locked in his cage going violently crazy. I think if I didn’t know that the violent crazy would change focus I wouldn’t want to be around anyone either. Especially not someone that I had come to care for. Ophelia’s former occupation was both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because she knew how to handle Bloodhounds and what they were like but a curse because it meant Hunter would have a hard time believing that Ophelia meant what she said. I was amazed at how many times she continued reaching out to Hunter despite his rejections. I think at first it was she didn’t want him to suffer because it wasn’t his fault and then as she started to care for him…
MinnChica: I agree that at times I wanted Ophelia to just throw in the towel and walk away, but I loved how it all ended up for them. Once the two got over themselves and came together, they were great together. I was also glad that Hunter was able to let himself go and get the chance to kick some ass. I loved the “final showdown” and how that all played out. Rogers’ does such a wonderful job telling a story, and there wasn’t much I didn’t love about this one.
E: Besides the overall relationship between Hunter and Ophelia we also got to see some of what goes into “policing” a town in these very different days. It was very fascinating to catch some glimpses of the internal politics with the Bloodhounds, their creators and the territorial war against the vampires. I will admit I had my concerns when two strange visitors showed up in town and had undue interest in Hunter, Archer and Nathanial. I was worried about what they would do and if they would push any of the characters I have come to enjoy to do the unforgivable. Like always Moira Rogers built up the tension and then fixed the issues with a very believable solution that required all concerned parties to make some decisions and take certain actions .
MinnChica: All in all, I really enjoyed the second installment of The Bloodhounds series. Hunter and Ophelia were both amazing characters, and I loved the way their relationship played out. I was glad to see them both rely on the other for support and assistance in dealing with their new lives. I also liked the introduction of two new characters in the Bloodhound world, and was excited to see the series get a more definitive direction to take. I’m excited to see where Rogers’ takes this series, how it will all play out. I can’t wait for the next one! I give Hunter’s Prey a B+
E: Hunter’s Prey was a wonderful addition to the Bloodhounds series. Not only did we get the almost star crossed lovers between Hunter and Ophelia we could also watch the rest of the characters we met in Wilder’s Mate continue to grow and settle into their new lives. Things are anything but safe and comfortable out on the border so to see these hardened people find something soft and caring is just great. Between the twisting politics, the hinted at but not quite said I think we are in for a rare treat as this series continues. I give Hunter’s Prey an A-/B+
Publisher: Samhain Publish Date: Out now How we got this book: ARC from the author via Novel Sidekick
She’s looking for redemption. He doesn’t believe in it.
Accused of betraying the Bloodhound Guild, Archer’s only chance to regain the trust of his fellow hounds is to earn it–one dangerous job at a time. Crystal Springs may be the worst yet. The town has been deserted by all but the poor and the desperate, yet the vampires stalking the edges of the settlement haven’t closed in for the kill. Question is, why?
Grace Linwood, professional liar, has been hiding under the guise of a border schoolteacher for so long, she’s almost fallen for her own con. The frontier was supposed to be her chance at a respectable life, but now the cowardly part of her wants to flee. When Archer catches her considering a run for safety, she knows it’s only a matter of time before he sees through her charade.
They become reluctant allies in the quest to uncover the mysteries of Crystal Springs, but every unraveled knot ties them closer together. They both know their pasts are too shattered to hope for a future–until their investigation uncovers a secret. One that could make betraying the Guild their only path to redemption.
Warning: Contains a partly reformed con-artist heroine with a bruised heart and a mostly retired bank-robbing hero with a weary soul. Also included: vampire schemes, mad scientist plots, an alarming amount of dirty talk and some borderline-criminal bedroom antics in an alternate Wild West.
This blurb came from the authors’ website here.
1. Thoughts on the Hero
Has: I adore this series so much and the Bloodhound heroes are definitely smouldering hot. Archer definitely hit that category for me although I have to say I loved how gentle and empathic with the heroine, Grace. But underneath that quiet and mysterious demeanor he was really protective and passionate and the scenes where he lost control *fans self*. I also loved how patient and understanding with Grace and when they commenced with their affair I liked how he let take the choice and it was clear to me how she would fall for him so quickly.
E: Archer, wow! He had so many depths that I never expected. I knew that he had to have some reason for his bitterness and why he was left to Wilder to deal with/keep an eye on but I was not expecting all of that. Archer continued to stay full of mystery to the remaining inhabitants of Crystal Springs only revealing bits and pieces of himself to Grace. One of the several things I loved about him is that despite his bitterness and disillusionment he continued to do everything he could to save the town and continue acting as a bloodhound. I don’t think many people could or would do that. I also really liked that he didn’t judge Grace for her past nor did he make it harder on her to maintain her position of respectability and trust within the town. I will also say that his smexy times *fans self* and how patient he was with Grace so very wonderful to read.
MinnChica: I’ve loved Archer from the first moment he stepped onto the Bloodhound pages. He was snarky and at times rude, he didn’t apologize for being blunt and I absolutely adored him. I was really excited to see where his story would go, and was so glad to see him not only kick a little ass, but also soften up a bit. I really enjoyed the way he processed his feelings for Grace, starting with almost a contempt like put for her, and then moving to respect and admiration and love. It was great to watch him process all those emotions, while still kicking butt and taking names.
2. Thoughts on the Heroine
Has: I really liked Grace, I found her to be really realistic and relatable especially in the beginning when she’s close to escaping the town and Archer catches her. And I didn’t blame her for wanting to run especially in the claustrophobic and dead atmosphere town of Crystal Springs. Grace is a not a perfect character and she has a past which she regrets which I loved – and she definitely felt more real especially with the danger of the remaining survivors of Crystal Springs.
Her chemistry with Archer was hot and I loved how their romance evolved over the book, especially towards the end.
E: Grace was the perfect heroine for Archer. She had a past that she was trying to regain her inner respectability from and a sense of responsibility towards Crystal Springs. The opening scene as she was mentally struggling with her fears and what she had already decided to do once more was such a snapshot of her mentality. I also really liked how she interacted with Archer and shielded him from the other ‘ladies’ in the town. Not that she was possessive or anything *grin*. I enjoyed how she was strong and willful but not TSTL. Her vulnerability the first night they spent together provided a great contrast to her outer image and just built her into such a complex character.
MinnChica: Poor Grace… trying so hard to start over fresh with a new life. I love heroines who realize there were on the wrong path, and are so willing to fight for the life they want. Grace was no exception. She knew she had screwed things up royally before, and yet she desperately wanted a respectable life, a husband, a family, someone to love. I adored her inner strength, and her ability to deal with Archer, especially when he would get prickly. I thought that they were so wonderful together, and perfectly complimented each other throughout the story. I hope we get to see more of these two in future books!
3. Favorite Scene
Has: I think my favourite scene of the book is the just after the vampire attack at the basement, where they were investigating the doc’s labarotory and his experiments. The romance really progressed between Archer and Grace and there was definitely a few hot scenes, but it also illustrated a change in their relationship. And I loved how Archer really opened up to Grace with his emotions – I think its hard to convey emotional development with a lot of love scenes. But for me in Archer’s Lady it so worked for me!
E: So many good scenes in this book. Between their first smexytime, to the New Moon, to their final fight with the vampires it is hard to pick one. I think I am going to go with one towards the end when Wilder, Hunter and crew arrive at Crystal Springs and barge in on Archer and Grace. That plus the ensuing discussion (some of which was at the top of people’s lungs) was a lot of fun. To me it just crystallized how far the two of them had come along with what made Archer the way he was. It also added some interesting hints into the development of the upcoming dispute with the Guild.
MinnChica: Eeek… trying to pick just one scene always kills me, especially when there are so many to choose from. And with a novella, each scene tends to mean something special to me, so having few scenes to choose from that are all great is so hard! I think the first scene, where Archer and Grace meet in the barn is one of my favorites. Grace is trying so hard to be honorable, and yet at the same time she wants to run as far and as quickly as she can. When Archer comes in and questions her, she stands up to him while trying to preserve her dignity. The play-by-play banter was wonderful, and I loved that little moment.
4. Dislike about book
Has: I don’t think I have any dislikes other than the ending which leaves a few things open with the main mystery and plotline. But overall this was a fast-paced and sexy read!
E: I also didn’t have any dislikes. I was immersed in the story from start to finish and it stayed that way even when I re-read it.
MinnChica: Although I love reading novellas, there are just some authors who should only write books that take hours to read. Rogers is one of those authors that I could read all day, every day. I adored the story, it was wonderful from start to finish!
5. Any other misc. thoughts along with grade
Has: Archer’s Lady for me is another solid installment which is fast becoming one of my favourite post apocalyptic PNR series. This was a hot and engaging romance and memorable characters packed full of mayhem and action I definitely can’t wait for the next book!
I give Archer’s Lady a B+
E: Moira Rogers has provided yet another stellar installment in their Bloodhounds series. Each story seems to get better and better as more things unfold about the world and its characters. I can always go back and re-read the entire series and feel like I am enjoying it for the first time again. It is rare to have books that give me that sense during multiple re-readings. The smexytimes were hawt, the suspense danger was intense, the emotional growth between Archer and Grace was great to see. I am so looking forward to the next one.
I give Archer’s Lady an A.
MinnChica: I adore the Bloodhound series and how unique it really is. The paranormal and steampunk elements are blended together perfectly and the world is so fun to jump back into. I’ve long adored Archer, and was glad to see him get his happily ever after. I also really liked being able to see the story progress, find out a bit more about the Bloodhounds, and meet the (hopefully!) heroine of the next novella. I still love Rogers and everything they write. These books are sexy and fun and wonderful short reads! I give Archer’s Lady a B+...more
Publisher: All Romance Ebooks Publish Date: Feb 12th How we got this book: From the author via Novel Sidekick
A short story set between Wilder’s Mate and Hunter’s Prey.
Merrick Wood is a wild man–literally. For six decades he’s stalked the Rocky Mountains as a bloodhound, fighting a losing battle against the vampires who have taken over most of the American frontier. He’s sure he’s seen it all, until an airship crash leaves him caught behind enemy lines with a concussion and a mate he doesn’t remember taking.
Paralee Colton is a wild woman. She enjoys her freedom and makes a good living flying over the Deadlands. Until, that is, bloodsuckers shoot down her ship, and she’s forced to deal with an irritatingly attractive man who isn’t a man at all.
Trapped together in the wilderness, Merrick and Paralee must fight to find a safe camp before the new moon drags Merrick into three days of sexual madness. But as enticing as Paralee finds the bloodhound, she doesn’t realize the stakes of their courtship game.
Getting out of the Deadlands is only half of Merrick’s battle for survival. If he can’t convince Paralee to stay with him, he’ll follow the footsteps of every bloodhound who’s ever lost a mate–straight into the grave. This blurb came from the author’s website here.
E: I had heard through the twitterwebs that Moira Rogers had a short story coming out in All Romance Ebooks Valentines special anthology I was pretty excited. Then I found out it was one of the Bloodhounds and I was even more excited because I have to admit that I am addicted to them. When we were offered the chance to review this I about broke my fingers trying to type my acceptance. If anything this short story just fueled my addiction to this particular series.
Has: I really loved Wilder’s Mate and the setting and premise of a western with steampunk elements and hawt smexy weres as heroes is just full of WIN for me. So I was definitely looking forward to the next installment, and dare I say it – I think Merrick’s Destiny almost topped Wilder’s Mate! I loved how sexy and intense the romance even though it was short. I adored the opening scene which hooked me straight into the story.
E: Talk about starting off with an impact! With a short story I think it is even more important to have the reader hooked quickly because you don’t have the room for a gradual build-up. That scene certainly set their characters and gave them a reason for having to work together. I also liked that Merrick was hurt and in a way owed his life to Paralee. It seemed to almost level the playing field between the two of them.
Has: I loved that scene so much! It packed so much info and emotions in such a short time period and the tension between them sizzled! And I totally agree that there was such an equal footing and their partnership on surviving their crash landing and the tentative beginnings of their emotional part of their relationship. I liked how Merrick didn’t want to push her and gave Paralee the space to make the moves.
I have to say that each love scene that they shared really ratcheted the tension and the intensity of their romance. I really do think that this was hottest story that Moria Rogers has written yet because if my Kindle could live up to its name. The words would be smoking!
E: Merrick was great. For such an old gruff Bloodhound he certainly had a hidden soft side. He tried so hard to let Paralee make her decision without any pressure. My favorite line that displayed how much he cared for more then the physical is:
"You’re going to be the most important thing in my world, and if you’ve got a scrap of compassion for me… Well, you’ll let me care for you a little, whether you need it or not."
OMG talk about swoon and certainly telling Paralee that she had a lot of power over him. And the continual build-up of sexual tension…*fans self*
Has: *Sigh* I know! That scene was pure utter scrumptiousness! I don’t think that a lot of short stories can carry that aspect well. But seriously Merrick’s Destiny really did deliver! Even though it was such a short story, the romance, the characterisation and the setting all worked. I felt very satisfied towards the end and although I was sad when I got to the end of the story and wished for more but that is because I wanted to know more about the characters and their future adventures. I thought that it was a wonderfully sweet but passionate Bloodhound entry to the series and for such a short story – it packed a memorable punch! Frankly I <3 this story!
I give Merrick’s Destiny an A
E: I also liked how the authors were able to sprinkle in bits of world building and Bloodhound history. I felt it added to the story both for readers familiar with the world and those who might be visiting for the first time. This was a great installment in their series and I can’t wait for the next. This short story delivered everything I was looking for. I can’t even complain about the short length, even though I didn’t want to stop reading, because the story felt complete.
Rather interesting take on an M-M. The technology with nanos, hives, infections method of transmission. This was probably a 3.5 star instead of just 3Rather interesting take on an M-M. The technology with nanos, hives, infections method of transmission. This was probably a 3.5 star instead of just 3. ...more
Publish Date: Out now How we got this book: ARC from the publisher via Netgalley & Print Arc from the UK Publisher
In this sequel to the bestselling fantasy thriller, Angelfall, the survivors of the angel apocalypse begin to scrape back together what’s left of the modern world. When a group of people capture Penryn’s sister Paige, thinking she’s a monster, the situation ends in a massacre. Paige disappears. Humans are terrified. Mom is heartbroken.
Penryn drives through the streets of San Francisco looking for Paige. Why are the streets so empty? Where is everybody? Her search leads her into the heart of the angels’ secret plans, where she catches a glimpse of their motivations, and learns the horrifying extent to which the angels are willing to go.
Meanwhile, Raffe hunts for his wings. Without them, he can’t rejoin the angels, can’t take his rightful place as one of their leaders. When faced with recapturing his wings or helping Penryn survive, which will he choose?
E: Oh a couple of years ago one of my fellow Book Pushers, **waves** Hi Has, insisted that I give a book called Angelfall a try. She raved over it so I gave into her pressure and well you can see the results http://thebookpushers.com/2011/09/30/... here. I was among those who eagerly searched out information on the second book and I am happy to say that the 2-year wait was worth it. I will caution you that if you haven’t read the first book you NEED to read it first because this starts immediately afterwards.
Has: Heh! I totally agree about needing to read the first book. I had a reread a few weeks ago of Angelfall and it was just as amazing the first time I read it. Even though World After took two years to be published it was well worth the wait and the ongoing epic saga of angels in a post apocalyptic world was just as addictive, with the edge of your pants action and a fantastic heroine.
E: Ee included some very interesting developments in this story. I really enjoyed learning more about the Angel swords and how special they really are. On several occasions the swords played a definitive role. I do have some questions about how/when/what makes the swords decide to act because it isn’t continuous. Raffe explained a few things about the swords but I hope more will come out in successive installments.
Has: I really loved how Susan Ee delved more into the Angel mythologies and their mythos surrounding their swords was really intriguing especially. I really loved the scenes with Raffe’s sword which bonded with Penryn. Her interaction with the sword were a real highlight which was filled with humour as well as brilliant action sequences. I also loved how an inanimate object was infused with real personality and it added real depth to the characterisations of Raffe and Penryn.
E: This story doesn’t pull any punches. It is apologetically dark and gritty. Watching the actions of most of the humans makes it difficult to have faith in humanity but Ee included a few bright moments with a variety of different characters, which kept hope alive. I also have to saw that I loved seeing a certain individual get some revenge against an individual who mistreated her. I think that was one of my favorite scenes in the book.
Has: I think this is why this series is so engaging and awesome! Because Susan Ee takes chances with the narrative and characters and doesn’t take any prisoners. I liked that the plot went into unexpected ways and even though some scenes were hard to read, it definitely felt different and refreshing to similar books in this genre. I also really like that there is real darkness and grittiness but she really balances it well with humour especially with the dialogue which is just as snappy and fun as the first book. I loved that the Dee-Dums (the identical twins who were part of the resistance in the first book) showed up again and I freaking adore their chemistry with Penryn which is full of humour and snark. Penryn’s mother also made me laugh with some of her actions even though it was pretty scary with what she can do with a lipstick. They really help to balance out the stark tone of the book and I hope we get to see more of them and their back-story in the sequels.
E: One of the other things I think Ee did quite well was develop her villains. All angels were not set against men, some were just easily manipulated and didn’t really know what they were supporting. The inclusion of science and gene-manipulation to create the flying scorpion like things was a great creepy touch. And then the symbolism about their abilities and cruelty that was revealed later in this installment was extremely diabolic.
Has: This was one of the interesting aspects and twists of the plot. I loved that she made the Angels into fallible beings, even though they were so powerful, they felt more real and fleshed out and ironically enough human-like too. Uriel’s character who is one of the main villains had an interesting scene towards the end which really highlights this and makes me wonder about the real reason on why the angels coming to Earth and the reason behind the apocalypse.
I also found that while the first book flirted with elements of horror, World After was more heavy with that overtone. Although I loved the twists on how the reasons and the creation behind the Scorpion beings and the results of the experiments of the young children who were taken and experimented upon, which Penryn’s sister was a victim of. It was creepy and chilling and memorable.
The only thing I was unhappy about the book, was the long separation with Raffe and and Penryn, their partnership was one of the strongest facets of the series. And even though Susan Ee does a really good job with certain aspects of the plot that you don’t really miss Raffe’s presence, when he is reunited with Penryn, their chemistry between them is really tangible. I loved the ending which was jaw-dropping with an unexpected twist although it does leave you desperate for the next book!
E: Ee packed a lot of action and plot development in World After while retaining the key essence of the characters introduced in the first installment. I loved how things continued progressing and the expanded viewpoint that Penryn developed. Ee ended this installment on a very interesting note and I can’t WAIT to see what happens next with Penryn, Raffe, Paige, and the others. As I said in the beginning of the review, the two year wait was certainly worth it because Ee nicely avoided the sophomore book slump. I give World After an A-
Has: I think World After cemented this series as one of the best in its genre. I was left on tenterhooks, with breath-taking action and a wonderful heroine who truly lives up to the idea on what it means to be a hero in a dark world falling apart. I really was captivated with the world Ee has created which was filled with horrific creatures and beautiful angels. The imagery in a lot of the scenes is striking and memorable, and the pace was fast pace but when you turn that last page you are left with wanting more. I so cannot wait for the next book because it was a stellar entry in this series!
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it is so great to see Andrea decide who and what she is going to be. The mythology, the fights, Kate and Curran being Kate andLOVE, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it is so great to see Andrea decide who and what she is going to be. The mythology, the fights, Kate and Curran being Kate and Curran, Pack politics hee hee. Certainly worth the wait!...more
Another good installment in Ms Marsh's series. I really enjoy this world and the Fallen angels. This novella focused more on the Rogues and their wingAnother good installment in Ms Marsh's series. I really enjoy this world and the Fallen angels. This novella focused more on the Rogues and their wings then on the war with a particular individual. My one quibble is that one of the requirements for an angel to regain his wings legitimately appeared to be skipped or maybe I mis-read. I will go back and read the other books again (such a hardship I know) and try to satisfy that wonder. Otherwise I really enjoyed this and can't wait for the next one....more
Jim! Dali! Young dragon! wonderful myth. Dali's family :). Loved this short story. Seeing the reasons that Dali acts the way she does. Seeing how JimJim! Dali! Young dragon! wonderful myth. Dali's family :). Loved this short story. Seeing the reasons that Dali acts the way she does. Seeing how Jim had tiptoed around her it was so wonderful. I think my fav romantic part is when he talked about himself in the third person towards the end. I know Dali is going to continue to cause him fits and I can't wait to get more :)....more
Yet another great story from Ms Worth. The emotional tension between the characters, the high stakes outside of their relationships, how they made itYet another great story from Ms Worth. The emotional tension between the characters, the high stakes outside of their relationships, how they made it all work. Also the growing attachments between the other survivors and something left unresolved that I can't wait to find out about in the next book. Once I started reading I couldn't stop. ...more
Publisher: Samhain Publish Date: Out now How I got this book: From the author
A woman seeking answers, a younger man seeking love, and an older man seeking revenge must work together to achieve all of their goals…
The Kithran Regenesis, Book 3
Vala Gorun’s family was off Kithra when the explosions happened and although she’s back on her home planet helping with the rebuild, something she saw all those years ago still haunts her. So she hires a Tracker to find the human man she’d once loved—one she thinks betrayed her in the worst possible way. In order to stop the search into his past, Jackson Canfield sends space pirates to kidnap the Tracker. He can’t afford to be found. Not now, when his revenge is almost complete. Unfortunately, instead of the Tracker, the pirates grab Vala and a young Gwinarian man instead.
Trapped on a pirate vessel with Bastian Sithbrun, a ridiculously attractive but younger man, Vala fights her attraction. But something about the twenty-year-old gets to her… But when the pirates leave them the unwilling guests of the very man she’d driven crazy with her teen crush all those years ago, Vala learns Jacks has been in hiding, working to right a horrible wrong.
Now the three of them must work together to reveal the truth behind Kithra’s destruction—if they can control the explosive passion that erupts between them long enough to complete their task.
Product Warnings A tattooed, broken-hearted heroine discovers M/M/F love is crazy hot when not fighting giant alien lizards or worrying about age differences. And when the senses are narrowed to touch alone behind a massive waterfall? It’s scorching! This blurb came from the author’s website.
I have been a fan of Dani Worth since I stumbled upon the first of her Kithran Regenesis series Kithra shortly after its release. I really enjoyed the story along with all of the questions left unanswered, the fate of the planet’s citizens, and how those who survived the disaster were going to handle the longer-term aftermath. As a result I eagerly picked up book two when it was released and let out a cheer when I found out that there was going to be a book three. Not surprisingly, I leaped at the chance to read and review Catalyst. Sometimes eagerly awaited books don’t manage to live up to my mental hype but this one certainly delivered. The Kithran Regenesis is one of those series where each succeeding book builds on information released in its predecessors. I think it is possible to start with this one because some of the back-story is nicely interwoven but I recommend starting from the beginning. As a result there will be a few spoilers from previous books but I will try to keep them to a minimum.
When Vala was 17 going on 18 she had her first serious crush on Jacks, a human visiting Kithra. Jacks viewed Vala as too young for him, so he tried everything he could think of to dissuade her feelings to include having a make-out session with his boyfriend in public. Gwinarians, the variant of human that lived on Kithra, matured at a much younger age than humans and their society did not have any taboos against multi-partner relationships so Vala was perfectly willing to join in. After Jacks caught Vala following him one night he tried once more to tell her that he was too old for her in what ended up being the last conversation they had before the explosions which rendered Kithra uninhabitable and killed most of the Gwinarians. Vala caught a glimpse of Jacks once more after that fateful conversation and based on what she saw, she eventually hired a Tracker to find him. Vala had her suspicions about him because that sighting was extremely circumstantial to the explosions. Jacks found out about the Tracker and hired some people to get the Tracker out of the way, only they grabbed Vala and a young man, Bastian, who had a crush on her. Vala and Bastian found themselves dropped on what appeared to be a deserted planet, not entirely hospitable towards Gwinarians, but during their search for shelter they ended up meeting Jacks.
I found that Worth used a rather interesting technique with this story. Vala had a huge crush on Jacks but he rebuffed her due to her age. Years later Bastian had a huge crush on Vala and she was trying to rebuff him. That situation gave Vala some small sympathy towards Jacks and how he must have felt which I think added depth to her character. She started off a very headstrong immature young woman. It became evident that over the years she had matured into a character worth following. Even though Vala had grown up when she encountered Jacks again she still had to struggle with the combination of years of mixed emotions ranging from love to hatred, to attraction to reluctant sympathy to anger. Watching her go through those swings just brought home how really complicated people and their emotions are.
Bastian, while younger than Vala, showed that he possessed a depth of maturity that she did not have during her crush on Jacks. He was persistent but he also made himself helpful instead of just mooning and skulking after Vala, which I certainly appreciated. He was also old enough to know his own mind and to subtly push his suit. Bastian almost seemed to provide the bridge and sometimes the buffer between Vala and Jacks. I think without his presence it would have been even more difficult to resolve the complicated past that tied Vala and Jacks together.
Jacks… I didn’t get as much of a feel for as I did the other two characters. I understood and admired his reluctance at the beginning of the book because Vala was rather immature. I also understood, after he told his story of the events, why he chose to hide out. I think I wanted both Vala and Bastian to learn more about Jacks because even during their encounters I felt he was still slightly remote.
Worth certainly had me speculating about all sorts of things as she threw in twists and turns. I wanted to know if and how Jacks, Vala, and Bastian would act on their mutual attraction and what the results would be. I wanted to know who was really behind the explosions and why. I wanted to know why Jacks was hiding out and why he tried to get the Tracker intercepted. I wanted to know if and how Vala’s friends would manage to find her. Luckily enough for me Worth answered most of my questions but in doing so she raised a few more. Overall I enjoyed watching Jacks, Vala, and Bastian interact together. I am looking forward to seeing what happens next as the quest for answers continues.
3 to 3.5 stars I think. Interesting. Story and world building made more sense then the prequel novella although I am glad that I read it. Parts seem a3 to 3.5 stars I think. Interesting. Story and world building made more sense then the prequel novella although I am glad that I read it. Parts seem a bit clunky and the pacing was uneven but events steadily moved forward. I did wonder a few times about the intelligence of the heroine but she redeemed herself. Some interesting twists and turns that I did not expect. I am certainly curious about the next one....more
OK I no longer like playing with Shadows...Can't wait for the next one!
The world-building was very interesting and intricate. I did have a few questioOK I no longer like playing with Shadows...Can't wait for the next one!
The world-building was very interesting and intricate. I did have a few questions about how Jules and James initially started their working relationship but I really enjoyed how things unfurled. The combination of danger, personal secrets, crazed scientists, and mutual attraction was great to see. Rai did a good job of building up the suspense and increasing my doubt that things were going to turn out ok at least for the moment.
Publisher: Samhain Publish Date: Out Now How I got this book: Review copy from author
Analyst James Bennett has spent the years since humankind fell victim to the Illness living underground. Part of an elite group of survivors determined to save their race, his only interaction with the blood-drinking Shadows roaming the Earth is through surveillance technology carried by his team of search-and-rescue agents. Scarred by vicious events, he has no desire to leave the safety of his bunker for the dangerous world outside—until he recruits a tough, haunted young woman clear across the country.
Former gang member Jules Guerrero learned two things early on: the value of loyalty and never backing down from a fight. Both of those teachings come in handy now that her job description includes protecting humans and kicking Shadow ass. But it’s hard to keep her mind strictly on her mission when all she can think about is the man whose voice keeps her sane through the depths of each dark night.
When Jules is captured and threatened by a rogue organization even more bloodthirsty than the Shadows, James must draw on all of his courage to fuel a furious cross-country chase through the lawless land…before the Jules he loves is destroyed forever.
Product Warnings Contains a hero who would fight monsters for his love, a heroine out to save the world, a treacherous wasteland, poetry as foreplay and flesh-eating enemies. *Blurb from Goodreads*
MinnChica: One of my favorite genres that I have a hard time finding books in is post-apocalyptic romance, so when I put out a call for suggestions and recommendations earlier in the year, I was sooo glad to hear Rai was in the process of writing this, and couldn’t wait to read it. I love Rai’s writing, she does such an amazing job of building unique worlds and keeping up with the sexy times. I loved everything about the ShadowLands world, and am so excited to see where else this series takes us!
E: I have to say from when Rai first mentioned this during MinnChica’s call for suggestions until last week when I was able to read it I have been looking forward to Night Whispers. The wait was worth it and now I am waiting for the next installment. Her world, the details included in it, the Shadows and not to mention mad scientists made for a very captivating read. There is so much left for us to discover and I am looking forward to the journey, from my nice, safe, sturdy, secure well-lit house.
MinnChica: I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the romance plot, especially since our hero and heroine spent the first half of the book (or so) separated from each other. Hell, they hadn’t even MET each other. It’s hard to really get invested in a romance when the two main characters are so divided and apart, and yet Jules and James were able to make it work, they were able to still form a stable bond, and pull me into their romance from their first conversation on the page. It wasn’t something I was expecting, but was so glad it worked out that way!
E: That was really amazing. But if you think about it with on-line dating today and the internet people do develop relationships before they physically meet each other. I have always had a hard time buying that in books or movies I think because it didn’t seem plausible given the rest of today’s technology but how Rai set it up was just wonderful. And then the lengths they would go through to make a day special for the other *melt*. Not to mention a hero who loves books There aren’t enough of those in the romance world!
MinnChica: Although James and Jules were the perfect hero and heroine for this story, I have to take a minute and point out all the fabulous secondary characters Rai brought into this world. I am so excited to see what happens with Erik, and how or if he will come to Raven and be a part of the fight. I loved Gabriel and his reluctance to be the figurehead of the new country. I hope everything with Carrie works out… God, just the secondary characters alone were enough to keep me flipping pages as fast as I could read.
E: Oh wow those secondary characters were amazing. They never stole the spotlight but I can’t wait to find out what happens with them. They were so complete which is refreshing to see in the supporting cast. Each of them has had their lives turned upside and shaken in ways that most people would never recover from yet they are still living and fighting. I am not going to try to figure out who I want to pair up with whom I just hope they all have HEAs because a life that hard certainly needs one. Rai has opened up such a can of worms in my head over everything I want to know in her Shadowlands world.
MinnChica: Back to Jules and James…. There was so much I enjoyed about each of them. James was this shy and quiet hero who was so scared of the big-bad-world and yet he sucked up his fears and anxieties and went out in search of Jules when she needed him most. He was a beta hero to the core, and although I’m usually not a huge fan of the beta hero, he wormed his way into my heart and had me falling in love. And Jules, poot Jules. With her screwed up childhood and desire to right every wrong she ever did, the poor girl was tortured. I loved that everyone teased her for having a hero complex, because she absolutely did, and it worked for her. I loved these two together, their personalities were night and day, and yet they complemented each other perfectly. I hope we see more of them as the series progresses.
E: James was the best beta hero I have seen in quite a while. He cared about those he worked with and around but never wanted to take charge. But when Jules needed him he came through with flying colors. Courage isn’t the absence of fear it is being scared and doing it anyways and James had it. He was the perfect counterbalance for Jules and her hero syndrome. She needed someone to take care of her and he needed someone who needed him for who and what he was with all of his scars exposed. Like MinnChica I hope we get to see glimpses into their relationship as the series continues because they were so wonderful together.
MinnChica: All in all I am happy to add the ShadowLands series and Alisha Rai to my recommended reads in post-apocalyptic romance! Jules and James were so wonderful to read, the cast of secondary characters proves this series has so much more to live up to, and the world is engaging and exciting with all the twists and turns. I’m so anxious to see where Rai leads us next, and hope she works on writing faster! I give Night Whispers a B+
E: This has certainly landed on my re-read status. I do have a few questions about how Jules and James initially started in their roles but that certainly didn’t interfere with my enjoyment of the story. Rai has set up a world and characters that I can see providing me with hours of entertainment as I explore it through her writing. Night Whispers hit all of my post-apocalyptic romance buttons without seeming like something I have already read. Again like MinnChica I think Rai needs to write faster! I give Night Whispers a B+ ...more
Very interesting characterization here. A few things developed a bit too quickly I think but that was probably the short length. I am very interestedVery interesting characterization here. A few things developed a bit too quickly I think but that was probably the short length. I am very interested in seeing what comes next in this world. I mean humans, werewolves, and a sort of vampire...
Publisher: MHP Publish Date: Out now How I got this book: Copy from the author
After people polluted the planet beyond recognition, the sky rocks came and reduced the world to rubble. Yet mankind refused to die, and the world was reborn. Welcome to the New West, where the Nature Laws rule.
1. Procreation is necessary, not optional 2. Women are a precious commodity 3. Harm the earth, lose your life 4. If it can eat you, it will
Welcome to the New West, where the Nature Laws dictate who lives and dies by the way they treat the land, carnivorous horses and blood trees are accepted mutations courtesy of the sky rocks, and the Impact Zone separates the earth-friendly territories of the West from a more sophisticated, steam-powered East. Women are rare commodities, living in extended families with more than one husband, and children are a necessity in a world where sterility is often the norm, not the exception. Life is full of challenge, romance and adventure. Something one courageous, wounded Amazon will find out first-hand.
Thais (Tay-iss) lost her mother, her queen, and most of her tribe at the hands of brutal foreigners, all while she enjoyed a respite from duty. But the young Amazon with vengeance in her heart refuses to lose anything else. She’ll bring back the queen’s stolen crown or die trying. Life in the Territories has its perils: the Nature Laws, carnivorous beasts, and treacherous men who survived the Time of Dying. One man in particular, a warrior in his own right, has an odd effect on her senses. She comes to desire him, to trust him, and she doesn’t like it. Men are good for war and breeding, neither of which Thais has time for, not when she’s so close to finding those responsible for the crown’s theft. In the course of her quest, Thais finds much more than atonement for her troubled past, but a pure and lasting love, if only she has the courage to accept it. This blurb came from Goodreads.
**Possible trigger warning – violence towards women**
I am a long time Western fan and I also enjoy reading apocalyptic or post apocalyptic romances so when I read the partial blurb included in the review request and it involved words like Amazon Western and new world I had to accept the request. I have read several of Harte’s stories before in a variety of genres so I was very curious to see how this combination would play out. Once again I am glad that following my curiosity led me down a very interesting path.
Harte has created a setting that reminds me of some elements of C.S. Friedman’s Coldfire trilogy world, an alternate history earth, and a touch of Mercedes Lackey’s Valdemar. I happen to really enjoy both Friedman and Lackey so those hints were certainly enjoyed. This story takes place in the New West with some mentions of South America, back East, and countries beyond the ocean. The west is very nature-centric with strict rules regarding what technology, occupations, and lifestyles are acceptable. At least within registered towns that are administered by the United Territorial Offices. The Territorials are supposed to enforce the Nature Laws listed in the blurb above along with good order and discipline. Hinto is a bounty hunter trying to earn enough gold to pay for a trip back east so his ailing father has the possibility of finding a cure. He rides a carnivorous horse and has a few special qualities of his own that would make him a target of the Territorials if word ever got out. He is also a rather blunt man who does not hide from his desires but at the same time would never force himself on a woman because he respects them and their wishes. He first encountered Thais when she had a run-in with the targets of his latest hunt leaving him one person short on the overall bounty. They end up meeting again back in town so Hinto starts hitting on Thais thinking that she is familiar with the laws of the land and therefore agreeing to spend time with him in the local brothel. Thais is looking for someone and not for a sexual encounter. She thinks that the brothel madam will have some information so she agrees to head to the brothel with Hinto. I about died laughing with Hinto’s bewilderment and disappointment when Thais heads back to the madam leaving Hinto to do as he will, without her. The next morning their adventure really began.
Hinto was a lot of fun to get to know. He tended to be the strong silent Alpha type who struggled to understand Thais and her frame of reference. He is physically attracted to her but demonstrates over and over again that she can trust him regardless of the situation. I thought he hunted her quite effectively while tying himself up in the same snare. One of the things I loved about Hinto is that he was confident enough to trust Thais to handle what she said she could instead of rushing to protect the “little woman.” He also remained loyal to his friends and family doing what he could to improve their circumstances without compromising his moral standards. Hinto wasn’t perfect but his character grew as the story continued which just added to my enjoyment.
Thais was also entertaining. Early in her adventure with Hinto I was slightly worried that combination of her perpetual innocence and naivety was going to get on my nerves. Thankfully as Harte unfolded Thais’ back-story I understood how she just did not have a “western” frame of reference when it came to innuendoes or sexual knowledge beyond the extremely basic. Watching her discover that not all men were evil, greedy, and untrustworthy along with the enjoyment that can come with a man and a woman was very refreshing. She had very definite views but was also willing to learn about the New West. Even before Hinto gained her trust, she was willing to work with him and not strike off on her own avoiding the TSTL syndrome. Thais also did some serious emotional growth and recovery from the events of her past so she could enjoy her future.
Watching Hinto and Thais interact gave me several laughs as well as some touching moments. They both slowly came to trust each other and to shift from reluctant co-workers to friends/lovers to more. It took time for that relationship to develop which I loved because I was able to get to know them both individually and as a partnership, which added to the depth of the story. The trust between them was absolutely critical as they dealt with the combination of villains that Harte provided. I really liked that the evilness was spread through more than one person instead of being concentrated in a single individual because that kept the story complex. Speaking of complexity, I also enjoyed how things were resolved, at least the immediate issues for this story because I did not feel cheated with too easy a solution.
Harte has created a very interesting world with some complex rules. A few things seemed contradictory for example mining is a violation of the Nature Laws punishable by death yet the currency of choice is gold. I am still curious about all of the changes caused by the sky rocks and their impact on humans and earth. I am also interested in why some technology just disintegrates in the New West and not others. Hopefully Harte will continue to provide details about this world as the series continues. Even with my quibbles about things that seemed to not quite fit I enjoyed reading Tip of the Spear and I look forward to reading the next one.
I give Tip of the Spear a B.
Links to purchase Kindle (Will be available on other platforms in a few months)...more
3.5 stars rounded up. Interesting world and characters. Lots of things were brought up about the world that I am looking forward to seeing in more det3.5 stars rounded up. Interesting world and characters. Lots of things were brought up about the world that I am looking forward to seeing in more detail in future novels. This is a bloody violent world with men and women both receiving and inflicting violence. Lots of layers to this. ...more
Publisher: Self Publish Date: Out now How we got this book: ARC from author
A woman with no future…
Live fast, die young–anything else is a fantasy for Six. She’s endured the worst the sectors had to throw at her, but falling in with Dallas O’Kane’s Sector Four gang lands her in a whole new world of danger. They’re completely open about everything, including their sexuality–but she hasn’t survived this long by making herself vulnerable. Especially not to men as dominant as Brendan Donnelly.
A man without a past…
Bren is a killer, trained in Eden and thrown to the sectors. His one outlet is pain, in the cage and in the bedroom, and emotion is a luxury he can’t afford–until he meets Six. Protecting her soothes him, but it isn’t enough. Her hunger for touch sparks a journey of erotic discovery where anything goes–voyeurism, flogging, rough sex. He has only one rule: he won’t share her.
In Bren’s arms, Six is finally free to let go. But his obsession with the man who made him a monster could destroy the fragile connection they’ve forged, and cost him the one thing that makes him feel human–her love. This blurb came from the authors’ website.
1. Thoughts on the Hero
MinnChica: Oh Bren… you are so sexy and stern and sexy. I love that he is the only one Six has been able to trust from the get-go. Because of that inherent trust she has in him, and only him, and the way he values and cares for that trust, makes Bren more sexy than the vast majority of heroes. I love a strong, silent hero who cares one hundred and ten percent for his heroine, and Bren does that for Six, day in and day out. He takes her feelings and fears into consideration before every decision he makes, and he never pushers her to do or give more. Plus, he’s super dirty like the rest of the O’Kanes, so what’s not to love?!
E: My poor tortured lonely Bren! I started falling for him when Six’s struggles to fight and get away didn’t phase him at all. He just made sure she couldn’t escape. Then when he gave her the opportunity to kill or hurt her primary tormentor I couldn’t wait to see what happened between them next. I absolutely loved how he was patient, truthful, and managed to let her make all the moves despite his intense attraction. He was so sexual that at times his slightest phrase or movement was weighted in layers but he also remained almost asexual until Six was ready. I loved how he paid so much attention to her and gave Six the freedom to find out what she enjoyed without making her feel stupid or ashamed. But he wasn’t perfect, his wild upbringing followed by the brutality of his treatment as an elite soldier for Eden left deep scars. His ability to read, understand and therefore manipulate people if he wasn’t careful could end up harming the very person he wanted to save. I will also say that the man can apologize! *grin*
Has: Oh I so agree! I loved Bren’s quiet intensity which was brimming full of sexual tension for Six but at the same time he was so sensitive towards her past. I also liked how he gave her the time to figure her place withing in the gang without pushing her even though he wanted her so very badly. The buildup in the beginning was just beautiful when they were dancing around with each other, and his yearning for her just made me melt. I also loved the other glimpses of his own past and the reasons on how he joined the O’Kanes, and it definitely added a multi-dimensional element to his character on how he related to Six.
2. Thoughts on the Heroine
MinnChica: Poor Six…. That poor girl started life strong, when she never really had much to fall back on. Then when she thought she was going to get the chance to make a difference, she was preyed on and abused. The fact that she still has such a strong spirit makes me love her so much more. I adore the fact that her feelings on Bren are so conflicted, despite the level of trust she has for him. Given her past, I love that she is weary and hesitant to jump into bed with the O’Kanes (pun intended). Despite all that though, when she is asked to step up and help out, she throws herself back into the life she was ready to escape and is finally given the chance to make the difference she wanted to do so long ago.
E: Six, oh man – gritty, strong, abused, determined, and amazing. She was put through the wringer even before she ended up in Sector Three. There after her strength and ability to influence people became evident she was lured into what she thought would be a position to make things better only to find that she was considered a threat and therefore was to be broken. While she was beaten down Six never completely gave up and slowly began to trust Bren and some of what Sector Four and the O’Kanes had to offer. I really admired that after everything she went through in Sector Three she still wanted to make things better for her people, even if she no longer had their trust and confidence. I also just have to say “Fight Night!”
Has: I think I have to say Six is my favourite heroine yet in this series. While I liked the previous heroines, there is something really special about Six, who is tough but also vulnerable. I loved how she grew from being really distrustful and broken but slowly healing from her past and finally being part of a family which grounds her. Overall, I think her romance with Bren is the best yet in this series because of the growth she underwent and I loved that she became an integral part of the O’Kanes for her insights on Sector Three which proved invaluable. I also loved on how she wanted to pave her own identity and role with the gang which helped to heal from her painful past.
3. Favorite Scene
MinnChica: Well, because this is Kit Rocha, I think I’m gonna have to go with a dirty scene. *wink* I think my favorite was when Bren and Six were exploring their wild side, and had a very intimate moment while watching Dallas, Lex, and Rachel have their own intimate moment. It was the perfect combination of down-and-dirty sex, while cutting up the scene with quiet and intensely intimate and private moments for Bren and Six. It was something I’d never read before in any erotic book, and it made that scene so powerful.
E: I will admit that I really enjoyed the scene MinnChica selected but I am going to pick another dirty scene. This one involves Bren, Six, and Ace. Six decided she wanted to learn what pain could do with pleasure and what really worked for Bren. The entire scene from her arrival into the room, to the serious discussion before anything started, to seeing an entirely new side of Ace through Bren’s recover was just amazing. It was tender, raw, sweet, and harsh all at the same time and really captured the complexity of their relationship.
Has: Well, since both MinnChica and E have highlighted two of my favourite scenes in the book, and yes the sexy action was sizzling. I will have to highlight the Fight Night scene which has Six demanding to be involved in a cage fight which was unexpected. I adored the fact, that Dallas and Bren let have her that agency and choice to fight which helped to get over the demons she was battling inside but also to prove that she was a useful and wanted would-be member for the gang. It also highlighted that what made the O’Kanes a coherent and strong group is due to these reasons that they welcome and support their members in every way.
4. Dislike about book
MinnChica: The thing I dislike about every Kit Rocha book is that it ends.
E: Well my only complaint is that I want Dallas to grovel. I think he got away with doing something that he knew he shouldn’t have done and really didn’t make up for it. Yes, Lex gave him a hard time but in my opinion he damaged something fragile and I don’t think he has mended it.
Has: I am with E about the groveling especially on the reasons why he needed to do so. I also hate the fact I have to wait early next year for another installment, where is that Tardis when I need one!
5. Any other misc. thoughts
MinnChica: All in all I think this is probably my favorite of the Beyond Series books. I loved that Bren and Six were somewhat reserved with their kink, while their emotional connection was so strong and secure. I loved that we got to see more of what is happening in the new sector, and can’t wait to read more about Rachel, Ace and Cruz! This series continues to be one of my favorite erotic romance reads! I give Beyond Pain an A-
E: I have been waiting for this installment since Bren and Six were first on the page together. It was well worth the wait. Seeing Bren work his magic and try to deal with his fear of losing Six because he didn’t deserve her was heart wrenching. I loved watching Six come into her own and the reveal of her name was so touching. I think as this series continues she will be a force for the O’Kanes, potentially even Lex’s second *crosses fingers*. Rocha included so many wonderful things in this story in addition to the connection between Bren and Six. I saw more of Eden’s not so pretty underbelly. I met a few new characters and started trying to match them up. I speculated wildly about the tangled web between an upcoming threesome and wondered what the O’Kanes would have to face as this series continues. I can’t wait to read the next installment.
I give Beyond Pain an A
Has: Beyond Pain is definitely the best book yet in the series for me, the romance which I think has knocked off Lex and Dallas off the top spot, was wonderful. I loved how Bren and Six slowly worked out their issues and their personal demons which damaged them both so deeply. And the love scenes, which was amazingly hot. The on-going arc with the political intrigue also ratchets up a notch and I really like how things are being played out on how Section Three, and the new twists on Eden and the affect it has on the other sections. The is a series which has all the crack elements that I love, and I think Beyond Pain has certainly cements this as one of the best erotic series that I’ve read!
Alexa Parrino escaped a life of servitude and survived danger on the streets to become one of the most trusted, influential people in Sector Four, where the O’Kanes rule with a hedonistic but iron fist. Lex has been at the top for years, and there’s almost nothing she wouldn’t do for the gang…and for its leader. Lie, steal, kill—but she bows to no one, not even Dallas O’Kane.
He’ll settle for nothing less.
Dallas fought long and hard to carve a slice of order out of the chaos of the sectors. Dangers both large and small threaten his people, but it’s nothing he can’t handle. His liquor business is flourishing, and new opportunities fuel his ambition. Lex could help him expand his empire, something he wants almost as much as he wants her. And no one says no to the king of Sector Four.
Falling into bed is easy, but their sexual games are anything but casual. Attraction quickly turns to obsession, and their careful dance of heady dominance and sweet submission uncovers a need so deep, so strong, it could crush them both.
*Blurb from Goodreads*
MinnChica: I’m always on the lookout for post-apocalyptic romance. When one of my favorite genres meets my favorite writing duo and they add in some super smokin’ smutty themes, it’s a match made in heaven! The second book in the Beyond series is just as hot as the first, and just as sweet. How Rocha is able to combine the right amount of smut with romance to create such amazing stories is beyond me! I was so excited to see the big bad Dallas brought to his knees by Lex, and it was EPIC.
E: Rocha hit all of my right buttons with Beyond Shame, the first book in the Beyond series so I have been looking forward to the sequel. As Rocha provided snippets and mini-excerpts along the way my excitement continued to grow. I am pleased to say that the wait was certainly worth it. Watching the actual dynamics between Lex and Dallas not to mention their continual sexual and emotional tension *fans self* was absolutely amazing. Yet it remained sweet, smutty, and set in a fascinating violent post-apocalyptic world.
Has: I so totally agree! I was looking forward to Beyond Control ever since I read the first book, because I was intrigued on how Lex and Dallas would finally get together despite their tensions over their issues. And I was so pleased this lived up to the promise because this was an intense, angsty and very sexually charged romance which I inhaled in one gulp. While Beyond Shame was like a tasty entree this was like a delicious main dish which delved into the world-building and characterization and with real depth and development to the on-going plot threads.
Thoughts on the Hero
Has: Oh Dallas, is a character who I love to wack something crack hard over his head. But at the same time, he’s such a well fleshed out and multi-layered hero with flaws that he has become one of my all time favourites which Kit Rocha/Moira Rogers has ever written. I loved we got to see his more vulnerable side of him in this book, especially when it involved Lex and how she draws that aspect out of him. It was beyond sweet, beyond passionate and definitely beyond sensual with their scenes together.
I also loved the elements of the political wrangling and posturing Dallas had to be a part of in protecting his people as well as his ambitions which added a lot of nuance and realism to his character.
Lou: I was so intrigued by Dallas in the first book. I wasn’t a huge fan of Noelle and Jasper in their book, but Beyond Control was so damn good. Dallas has an intensity to him that made the book so fraught with tension. He’s wanted Lex for so long but she’s pushed him away. I thought their romance was very romantic and their connection incredible. He had to straddle being the leader of the Kanes whilst treating Lex as an equal.
E: Dallas oh man! Talk about hard, intense, dedicated, controlled and yet lonely and driven. By the time I finished Beyond Shame I really wanted to know what made him tick and why Lex had so much influence on him. Seeing the other aspects of his character both within his relationship with Lex, the political posturing with the other Sector leaders, and how he interacted with members of the O’Kanes was brought into sharp relief. He showed so much about where he got his stability but also how Lex was his major vulnerability.
I really liked how he fought against his instincts to protect Lex through controlling her movements and caging her in because he knew that would only destroy her and any chance they ever had. Even with his insights he was still clueless at times about Lex and how her mind worked. It was good to see that he wasn’t omnipotent and had to learn how to apologize and do some groveling.
MinnChica: Ahhh Dallas…. What to say about the man who has it all, and whatever he wants, is laid at his feet. I love that he is a total hardass, and yet has a sweet side as well. I enjoyed the fact that he had such a depth to him that I never imagined. For all his kinky ways in both the first book and this one, he also had a strict code that he lived by for his partners. I thought it was kinda endearing to him. Plus, given his total badass nature, his willingness to do anything and everything for Lex was so awesome to read.
Thoughts on the Heroine
Has: I loved Lex in Beyond Shame, I love her upfrontness, courage and she did not take any shit from anyone even with Dallas who is her weak-point. She was the perfect foil and partner for him and that she was person who helped to cement the O’Kanes and in a lot of ways, she is their heart. This was such an emotionally intense book and I was exhausted but in a good way reading on how they got together because they played high stakes in a harsh world. And even though it was such a dangerous and stark world they are living in, the romance between Dallas and Lex was truly sweet and vulnerable and I loved how they drew aspects of that and made it a strength because it helped to ground them which is something they both realised in the book.
Lou: Lex is an incredible character. Her confidence about her sexuality was so empowering, and I loved that she didn’t roll over for Dallas. Yet Lex and Dallas were romantics at heart. I’m not a huge fan of menages and orgies, but Kit Rocha has created a world where everything feels natural. Lex has a strong relationship with Noelle from the first book, including a sexual one, but in Beyond Control we see just how much Lex and Dallas care about each other, and how their love is very personal and private. That’s what was missing for me in the first book. I didn’t get any connection from Noelle and Jasper.
E: Lex was so complicated. I really liked how she broke away from her past and made herself into a completely different openly powerful woman. Yet she was also determined to ensure she didn’t leave any reason for Dallas to hold her past over her head. Seeing her go back and confront some key people from that past was also very insightful. I loved how she made the first move and practically dared Dallas to say or do something about it. Of course I don’t think she was quite ready for what he did. Her vulnerability to Dallas and how she gave him as many chances as she could without losing herself was amazing to watch. And then to see everyone bond to her and basically ensure Dallas knew he screwed up showed just how much people appreciated everything she had done for them.
Lex showed in so many ways that she knew what Dallas had to do for the O’Kanes and what she was willing to do to help others. But she also needed Dallas to continue to treasure her as a partner after they became lovers in truth not just as his lover. Watching her start to trust Dallas not just more than any other man but with herself was amazing because so much was at risk. If I didn’t already really like her as a character I would have fallen completely for her in Beyond Control.
MinnChica: I fell for Lex the moment she stepped onto the page in the first book. She was a free spirit, she loved life and there were so many different aspects to her facade that I couldn’t wait to delve in and find out more. As her backstory unraveled, I loved her even more. She was strong and given the way she was raised, she didn’t let life beat her down either. She fought for what she wanted to fight for, and also took every opportunity to help out any other woman in need. She has a soft spot a mile wide, and for that alone I adored her to pieces!
Has: I can’t spoil this scene because it was part of the ending and climax – but like Lou says it was linked with when they made love. But I think this scene really showed, Lex was not afraid to go into the heart of danger and to save people who she promised to protect. It also made Dallas realise how much she was important to him even above the O’Kanes and I think that was a turning point on their relationship.
Lou: My favourite scene has to be at the end where Lex and Dallas make love. There was so much intensity and love between them, and it came across as very romantic. We see Dallas’ vulnerability with his relationship with Lex where he wants her for himself and admits his jealousy.
E: Hmm so many scenes I liked. The love scene that both Has and Lou mention was a wonderful scene. I think the one I will pick for this is when they are having a discussion and Dallas asks if Lex trusts him. She responds that she trusts him more than any other man and Dallas said that he would work with that but he wasn’t stopping with that. To me that cemented exactly how much he wanted Lex not just for smexytimes but as a whole even if he didn’t know what that whole consisted of.
Of course I also loved when a certain individual received what he was due!
MinnChica: Oh man… trying to find just one scene that spoke to me above all the others…. I think I might have to go with the scene where Lex sees her sister again after all the years apart. It was such a sweet and heartbreaking moment. Lex gets the chance to see her family, and at the same time she also opens her eyes a little to just how different life is for everyone. Despite her hatred for the way she was raised, she also sees that the life she left behind wasn’t as awful as she thought. That her sister was happy and thriving. It might not have been until later that Lex really let it sink it, but that moment resonated with me.
Dislike about book
Has: I don’t have any real dislike about the book, because the pacing, side characterisations and the ongoing plot-lines were all solid and developed.
Lou: I suppose my only dislike of the book was involving the secondary characters, where I thought Ace and Rachel were starting to become close, when suddenly a new male character appears, which means triangle. I’m looking forward to their book but I’m unsure of how it’s going to play out.
E: I don’t really have any complaints. I just want more.
MinnChica: Ah man… is too much sex a complaint? No, than nothing here either!
Any other misc. thoughts along with grade
Has: I think Beyond Control really cements this series for me. I loved that the world-building which was explored much fully, which was my main gripe of the previous book. But in this book, you had political intrigue and wrangling, a heart-wrenching and tender romance which was filled with sexually charged love scenes (you will definitely need a fan when reading this book) and solid characterisation. I can’t wait for the next book, which will feature Six and Bren which promises to be just as good.
I give Beyond Control an A-
Lou: Beyond Control really delves deeper into the world building, and the romance for me had a deep emotional connection that I could believe in. My problem with the first book was that it was mostly sex without any depth going into the world building. Beyond Control is much different and goes into the details of the gangs and sectors, and we see the different sides to Dallas and Lex.
I give Beyond Control a B.
E: I thoroughly enjoyed Beyond Control. I was able to see into Dallas and Lex who already had a complicated relationship. I also got to visit the other O’Kanes and see how they were progressing as well as some hints for future books. I also liked the glimpse of the other Sector leaders and their personalities. Some clashes coming up I can imagine. Rocha did a wonderful job on this installment and it was well worth the wait. I am looking forward to the next one.
I give Beyond Control an A.
MinnChica: I really enjoyed the second installment of this series. I love the nitty and gritty world that Rocha created, and the chance to see even more if it in this book was perfect. I’m so anxious to see where we go from here, what happens with the new sector under Dallas’ control, and how some of the secondary characters will find their ever after. I love that all the characters stand out as ones I can’t wait to read next, and have fallen head over heels for this series.
Publisher: Samhain Publish Date: Out now How I got this book: ARC from the author
Nate Powell lived one full life as a world-class inventor before a disaster born of magic and science returned him to his prime—and turned him into a half-vampire, half-bloodhound abomination.
He’s finally stopped yearning for death, but he’s a long way from being excited about life—even if his newly virile body is very excited by the latest arrival to Iron Creek.
Diana is another creature that shouldn’t exist—a female bloodhound. While the males of Iron Creek accept her as a fellow warrior, Nate seems torn between a desire to study her and a need to protect her. Diana’s urges are a lot more carnal.
When they learn that a rogue hound is selling women across the border, Diana and Nate are chosen to infiltrate the vampires’ capital city. But before long their inner bloodhounds feel the mating pull—and a hound never outlives their mate for long. In a fight to keep each other alive, they could both end up worse than dead.
Warning: Contains a badass vampire-hunting heroine who isn’t afraid to fight dirty and a broody half-vampire hero about to discover a reason to live again. Also beware of: bloodhound-on-bloodhound violence, airship heists and some furniture-endangering sex with lots of biting, all in an alternate Wild West. This blurb came from the author’s website.
Put the two words “Moira” and “Rogers” together as the author of a written work and I will trample anyone who tried to stop me from reading it. In other words, I am a huge Rogers fan and look forward to whatever their latest release is. The Bloodhounds series is one I turn to as a re-read when I want alpha men, strong women, smexytimes where the sole purpose is the maximum amount of pleasure possible, vampires, shapeshifters, and people fighting to preserve their freedom. In this particular installment, I got all of that and then some not to mention another increase in tension between the borderlands and the Guild.
Nate and Diana should not exist by the laws of the Guild, their inventors, and everything publically seen in the fight against the vampires. Diana survived a vicious Bloodhound attack and was transformed into the first known female Bloodhound. Her existence has been kept a secret because the Guild would want her as a lab subject. She was struggling to find her place as both a woman and a Bloodhound with all of the build-in instincts to protect and the vulnerability caused by the moon. Nate, once a skilled aging Guild inventor suffered a vampiric transformation that was aided by the blood of an illegally created Bloodhound. He was also trying to find his place as a now young inventor, weakened by the sun, with a requirement to drink blood. Together they decided to face rumors of a rogue Bloodhound selling unwilling humans to vampires for pets.
The events that set up Nate and Diana’s trip are rather disturbing to the order of things. Bloodhounds were invented to protect against vampires not to attack humans, sell humans, or assist vampires in their territory management. However, reports and encounters in the borderlands are making it seem as if the Guild is trying to play both sides. Against that politically charged and dangerous backdrop are two misfits who have to cut through all of their social trappings and find each other in order to survive.
I liked Nate primarily as the man who cared for and taught Satira, heroine of Wilder’s Mate Book #1, but I really did not have a feeling for him outside of that until this story. Rogers did a great job mixing his old man set in his ways habit and mindset with the almost uncontrollable urges of a much younger and vigorous man. He also had to deal with the Bloodhound protective nature and that was focused on Diana. Watching Nate struggle with all of the new aspects of his life especially while dealing with a situation that needed his control and intellect was very entertaining.
I fell in love with Diana’s character from the moment she walked on screen in Archer’s Lady so I was very happy to hear she was getting her own story. Not that I have anything against the male Bloodhounds but I have a not so secret weakness for women doing well in a traditional man’s job while still being themselves. Diana knew how to work with her strengths and biological differences from the other Bloodhounds while efficiently protecting her territory. However, after moving in with Wilder and Satira, she wasn’t quite comfortable in her role there not to mention her growing attraction to Nate.
I had an absolute blast watch Nate and Diana in a situation that practically forced them to deal with their attraction. Rogers did a wonderful job bringing their attraction to the forefront scene by scene. In addition to the attraction and mutual needed trust Nate and Diana had to deal with some unexpected visitors and confirmation that things on the Borderlands are not how the Guild should be operating. Each installment has widened the divide between the Guild and Bloodhounds who are trying to protect the border. I think this is leading up to a split and maybe an internal war of some sort. I was also introduced to a new Bloodhound that I hope will make his way to Wilder’s crew.
Once again Rogers provided an intense enjoyable read. They are skilled at mixing up character roles yet allowing the characters to remain true to their essence. They also continue to move the overall series arc along while moving individual characters along their journeys. The interlocking nature and threads assists in making this series an absolute delight to read. As usual I cannot wait for the next installment.
Oh those pesky Gods interfering with people like we are toys. Interesting read. I liked the take on lightening and how the Gods both help and hinder.Oh those pesky Gods interfering with people like we are toys. Interesting read. I liked the take on lightening and how the Gods both help and hinder. I did think things were cleaned up a bit too neatly....more