I liked "Big Bad Wolf" by Christine Warren. It wasn't until I got home and began the story that I realized this was an expanded version of "Fur FactorI liked "Big Bad Wolf" by Christine Warren. It wasn't until I got home and began the story that I realized this was an expanded version of "Fur Factor" which was originally published as an ebook by Ellora's Cave in 2003. I enjoyed the original and I was pleased to read the expanded version which is actually the second of the 'Fantasy Fix' miniseries.
Missy is the 'good' girl. She's a kindergarden teacher who likes children and dreams of the whole 'white picket fence' future. She's also about ready to give up since she's the 'good friend' type rather than the 'girlfriend' type. Of course that doesn't mean she can't still fantasize and one uber-sexy werewolf Graham is the current star of her nightly fantasies...even if he doesn't know she's alive. Until one night...
Graham has plenty of women...he's actually bored with it. And he has enough to occupy his attention with his wimpy cousin trying to take over his pack so going without isn't such a big deal. Then he lays eyes...and nose...on HER. Now his mind is made up...he just needs to--convince Missy she's his mate, defeat his cousin's shenanigans, convince the pack to accept Missy, and...oh yeah, tell Missy she's pregnant after only one night!
Hot and hilarious. Warren does a great job of portraying not only the poor Alpha who has to try and explain what' just instinct for him, AND poor Missy who's more used to cleaning up Play-Doh than blood. A fun couple that'll leave you fanning yourself!
Shapeshifters, vampires, and fae, oh my. And they're each and every one smoking hot! "Hot for the Holidays" is a four-story anthology of paranormal stShapeshifters, vampires, and fae, oh my. And they're each and every one smoking hot! "Hot for the Holidays" is a four-story anthology of paranormal stories, each incorporating a nod to the upcoming holiday season. Since I'm a fan of all four authors, what's not to love?
Angela Knight takes us on a short trip to her Mageverse with "Vampire's Ball" and the story of a vamp Knight and a potential Maja (witch). Is their overwhelming passion just a product of her change? When confronted with a demon from her past, they'll have to work together or die.
Next up is Allyson James with "A Little Night Magic". She fell in love with him and then he left her. Now he's back, but his enemies aren't far behind. It's a good thing Naomi's pretty open-minded since her man is now a Mountain Lion!!
"Sweet Enchantment" by Anya Bast looks to be a glimpse of an upcoming series (I hope!) about the Fae. It's a very different take on Romeo and Juliet with each from a different 'court' but meant to be together. Unfortunately, there's that wicked Queen to deal with!
Finally, with a "A Christmas Kiss" Lora Leigh's Breed fans will rejoice. The scientist drugged into betraying her Breed friends gets her happy ending while evading a murderous traitor in the Breed compound.
Four hot stories by four hot authors. Merry Christmas to me!...more
Erin Quinn is a new (to me) author and her book "Haunting Beauty" was quite an engrossing read. It's a curious blend of murder mystery, paranormal, tiErin Quinn is a new (to me) author and her book "Haunting Beauty" was quite an engrossing read. It's a curious blend of murder mystery, paranormal, time-travel (thus historical AND contemporary) and romance. If that doesn't whet your appetite, I don't know what will!
Danni is an orphan, abandoned by her mother when she was just a child. She's never been sure if her special abilities were part of the reason her mother left her, but as a result, she's been fairly hesitant about using those talents. Now suddenly she's hit with a vision of a man and danger and less than 24 hours later that same man, Sean, shows up at her doorstep. The story he has to tell is one of murder and mystery and he wants her to come meet what's left of her family in Ireland! Now everything Danni thought she knew about herself is changing and sexy Sean is more involved than she ever dreamed...and so are the rest of the abilities her mother's lineage granted her.
I found this book almost impossible to put down once I started it. The blend of mystery and romance with 'witchy' Irish lore sucked me in quickly and didn't let go. The story flows smoothly even with the 'traveling back in time' portions. The passion between Danni and Sean is hot from the first and only intensifies as the story and their relationship progress. For paranormal lovers looking for something different, or Irish folklore lovers, or romance lovers, or...heck...just about anybody, try this story and I don't think you'll be disappointed!...more
"Nothing But Scandal" is the first book by Allegra Gray. It's a charming historical with passion and a bit of intrigue and I found it a fairly quick r"Nothing But Scandal" is the first book by Allegra Gray. It's a charming historical with passion and a bit of intrigue and I found it a fairly quick read.
Elizabeth Medford's father died recently, leaving her and the rest of the family broke. Although she's always been the dependable one, she just can't quite bring herself to willingly wed her despicable distant cousin Wetherby. He's cruel and seems to enjoy her fear and hurt. He only wants to marry her to improve his standing in society, so Elizabeth decides to ruin herself quite publicly, therefore taking herself out of his sights. But the rake she chooses just won't cooperate!
Alex, Duke of Beaufort, can't get the beautiful Medford chit out of his thoughts. Was she actually serious about ruining herself? Or was her suggestion another piece of her late father's plot? Unfortunately, the more he sees of her, the more he realizes she is just the Duchess he's been looking for...if they can avoid yet more scandal.
Not the most memorable historical, but for a first book I was much entertained. Allegra Gray is, for me, an author to keep an eye on as she gains experience....more
"With a Twist" by Deirdre Martin was a book I really, really wanted to like. Unfortunately for me, the heroine got on my nerves from her first appeara"With a Twist" by Deirdre Martin was a book I really, really wanted to like. Unfortunately for me, the heroine got on my nerves from her first appearance and everything she said and did just GRATED for me. At the halfway point, I gave up. I just couldn't deal with the heroine's attitude anymore and so I quit. Plenty of other readers have enjoyed this book so I like to think this was just a wrong person, wrong book situation.
Quinn is an Irish New-Yorker newspaper reporter...the best reporter in New York, just ask him! Natalie is a French emigre who fled her homeland after a bad situation/relationship. She's currently lowered herself to work in her sister's bistro, but what she really wants is to manage a 'real' restaurant...even though she has no experience. She agrees to work for Quinn's parents at their Irish bar in Manhattan but only so she can look for a 'real' job. She dislikes Quinn, the bar patrons, the food, and just about everything else. But somehow Quinn keeps managing to snare her attention.
I'm trying very hard not to overstate Natalie's distaste of...pretty much everything and everybody except herself and anything French. From the beginning her attitude, even towards her sister's 'quaint bistro' just lit me up. She believed herself better than pretty much anyone else and constantly put them down, even if in her own head. How could I like a heroine like that? I couldn't and I didn't. That's why I've rated this book as I have.
If my dislikes aren't yours, then you may enjoy this book. It has romance, a bit of mystery, and an interesting look at culture clashes. It just wasn't my haute cuisine.
R.G. Alexander's 'Children of the Goddess' series just gets better with the second book, "Lux in Shadow". A quick warning that THIS book IS erotica anR.G. Alexander's 'Children of the Goddess' series just gets better with the second book, "Lux in Shadow". A quick warning that THIS book IS erotica and involves a menage of M/F/M. There are also scenes of M/M, M/M/F, and M/F including the use of toys, light bondage, a hot spanking, and sex in all the orifices I can think of. All of this is done well (and smoking hot) and rolled into the story of a vamp, a were, and a werewoman-with-special-powers-who-can't-change-forms. Whew!
Lux is happy for his brother, Zander, and his new grathia (lifemate). But he just can't forget how he failed to protect his lover from the recent violence. And now he's plagued with desire for the handsome werewolf Alpha, Arygon, who he wants but feels he must resist to punish himself. Exacerbating the situation is their mission to find the missing sister of the man who almost killed them. According to their seer, this woman must be protected. It only takes one glimpse of the woman they're looking for and both males are hooked. But each will have their own internal demons to fight before they can be true mates.
There's so much more going on, but I don't want to give it all away! Suffice to say this series has caught my attention in a big way and now my quandry is: Do I wait for the print version of book 3 "Twilight Guardian" or do I give into the lure of quick satisfaction and buy the ebook that's already available? Decisions, decisions. This series is one I don't confuse with any other paranormal or vamps and weres out there because it has enough differences to stand out in my memory. The first book was a twosome, this one is a threesome--but both books are ultimately about love, finding that special someone/s, and accepting their strengths and weaknesses as well as your own. All this and hot sex too.
"Regina in the Sun" is the opening book of another very interesting erotic paranormal series by R.G. Alexander. With all the werewolves, vampires, dem"Regina in the Sun" is the opening book of another very interesting erotic paranormal series by R.G. Alexander. With all the werewolves, vampires, demons, etc flooding the shelves today, I was pleased that Alexander's brand of paranormal critters had enough differences to make them stand out from the rest. I've already ordered book two and will be curious to see where the plot goes.
Regina is an Unborn vampire, the offspring of a natural vampire and a human, which makes her the lowest caste of vampire. Yet when her clan of outcast Unborns is threatened by a Shadow Wolf, she heads for the Trueblood vamp who befriended her mother and pleads sanctuary. Surely the news of the reappearance of the Truebloods ancient enemy, a Shadow Wolf, will grant her an audience?
Zander is a Trueblood, and not just any Trueblood either. He's from their purest and most powerful line. That's why he's their Mediator, keeping peace amongst all the Trueblood clans. From the moment he first sees Regina, she draws him to her and he quickly figures out that she's his bloodbound mate and that's something held in awe and honor by all vampires. Yet it seems one of the Truebloods is working WITH their ancient enemy and now Zander will have to fight tradition and an unknown traitor to keep Regina alive and convince HER to stay with him.
Very hot, very well plotted and executed. There's enough differences in R.G. Alexander's new series to keep it fresh in my mind. The book ends with closure and yet there's also teasers regarding characters for (I hope) the next book. I never know whether to be excited or groan when I find yet another new series to read (like I don't have enough already), but now I MUST read the next to find out for sure if I'm hooked. ...more
"The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker" is one of the strangest 'romances' I've read in a long time. Author Leanna Renee Hieber has penned"The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker" is one of the strangest 'romances' I've read in a long time. Author Leanna Renee Hieber has penned a tale worthy of the title 'gothic' and just about as understandable.
Miss Percy Parker is an albino. Abandoned as an infant on the steps of a convent in Victorian times, she grew up with only ghosts as friends. When she arrives to the Athens school in London, she is ever hopeful of finding a purpose for her life and equally fearful of the jibes and scorn of those who fear anything and anyone different. She's quickly taken by her dark and mysteriously handsome mathematics professor and dreams that he might not find her hideous.
Alexi is part of the Guard of six who are in search of their seventh as foretold to them when they were young teenagers. Each was granted a gift that helps them fight evil spirits and lay them to rest. Alexi is their leader and especially anxious for the arrival of their seventh as he feels that she will be his love. But the prophecy revealed to them also foretold of a trap and a traitor...and now, not one but two women have appeared that may fulfill their prophecy...and Alexi and his guard must make the right choice or doom humanity to the demonic force that is the Ripper.
A strange amalgam of history (the Ripper), gothic romance (G-rated, if that), and lore (Persephone and Hades)--I confess that the mixture was rough-going for me. Portents and omens and prophecies (oh, my) that were lain out without much explanation and only partially explained later in the plot. I'm sure there are many readers who will enjoy a modern version of the classic gothic paranormal...but I'm not one. I found the writing, while true to form, stilted and difficult to follow. I was actually relieved to finish and a bit disappointed with the ending even though I won't give it away. Like a true gothic, the ending isn't happy for everyone and some readers may find that a letdown. On the plus side, an albino as a heroine is unusual, even though she often (in my opinion) acted like a ninny....more
"Secondhand Spirits" is (hopefully) the start of a good mystery series by new-to-me author Juliet Blackwell. This story is a mixture of lore, witchcra"Secondhand Spirits" is (hopefully) the start of a good mystery series by new-to-me author Juliet Blackwell. This story is a mixture of lore, witchcraft, mystery, and G-rated romance with a touch of history and personal growth thrown in.
Lily is a powerful witch but has always been a loner. She's spent the last several years running from her past, but recently decided to settle down and chose San Francisco for its eccentric aura and people. She uses her 'gifts' sparingly and enjoys finding just the right vintage outfit for her customers at her new vintage clothing store. Not long after opening, one of her recent clothing donors is murdered and a neighborhood child disappears. Unable to ignore the situation, Lily discovers there's quite a history of disappearing children...and the death of her donor may have something to do with it. She's need all her skills to cope with her investigation while under suspicion by the local cops. Seems SHE was the last person (other than the murderer, of course) to see the old woman alive. Lily also has to deal with two new men in her life...and one demon familiar masquerading as a pig! One of her new attractions is a diehard skeptic and the other's a powerful male witch that she can't quite bring herself to trust. What's a witch to do?
While the story does have a light feel, this is not a frothy, comedic mystery at all. I enjoyed the story of Lily and her evolving life as much as the mystery. As she goes from a woman trying to hide her nature to a woman not hiding...but not broadcasting either. A very interesting look at the life of a woman who's always felt (and been) DIFFERENT.
The mystery was well laid out and there were plenty of suspects and clues. I didn't figure out the 'bad guy' til the end when the author 'exposed' them. Looking back, I can see the clues but they weren't 'easy'. I want to read more about Lily and her hunky guys and the author indicates the next book is titled "A Cast-Off Coven" and will be published in June 2010....more
Meh. I normally don't mind anthologies and understand that the authors don't have many pages to tell their stories. However, in "Sand, Sun and Sex: AMeh. I normally don't mind anthologies and understand that the authors don't have many pages to tell their stories. However, in "Sand, Sun and Sex: A Midsummer's Night Steam" it seemed the authors didn't even try to 'do' relationships. The couples meet, jump in bed, have lots of sex in a short amount of time, and fall in love.
"Marielle's Marshal" by Beth Williamson. Two people running from painful pasts must work together when their stagecoach is robbed.
"La Mirage" by Jennifer Colgan. Two co-workers give into desire when they're stranded and come upon a mysterious resort in the middle of no where.
"Fijian Fling" by Sami Lee. She comes to his resort to rethink her life. Their attraction is strong, but can they overcome their differences?
"Beyond Tears" by MIchelle Cary. They've both been hurt, but each will need to learn bravery in order to be together.
None of the stories really touched me. I found myself just wanting to finish the book....more
An adult fairy tale translated into modern lingo...with hot sex to boot. "Midnight Encounters" is my first full-length (220 pages in trade paperback)An adult fairy tale translated into modern lingo...with hot sex to boot. "Midnight Encounters" is my first full-length (220 pages in trade paperback) read by author Elle Kennedy and it hit just the right mix between fantasy vs reality and serious vs light. In addition, there's no bondage, menage, or anal sex for those who enjoy their romances on the more 'vanilla' side ;) but there IS plenty of hot one man/one woman sex.
Maggie grew up an orphan and has filled her life with work, school, and volunteering. She really doesn't have 'time' for a relationship so she's perfectly happy with her current arrangement with Tony. He's a traveling writer who blows into town two or three times a year and during his short visits they meet at a local hotel to have sex. Then he's gone again and Maggie can return to her life of work, school, and volunteering. But combine a dead phone, a missed phone call, and no lights and Maggie's in for quite a surprise!
She's a workaholic with abandonment issues and he's trying to hide from the paparazzi. Yet this oil-and-water pair can't deny the heat of their attraction. And their proximity quickly leads them to deeper emotions than either is ready, or willing, to admit.
Cinderella and the Prince, writ modern style--that's what this story reminded me of...with lots of hot sex too. There's a bit of depth provided by her childhood as an orphan and status as a volunteer at a women/children's shelter but the author doesn't try to preach...I like that. There's no doubt about how the story will turn out, but then again isn't that part of the beauty of the Cinderella story? We all know she WILL get her prince and they WILL be happy. A fun way to spend a few hours with a book and a fan :)...more
Yet another series I CANNOT get enough of. "Walking Dead" is C.E. Murphy's latest in her 'Walker Paper' series about Joanne Walker, shamaness/auto mecYet another series I CANNOT get enough of. "Walking Dead" is C.E. Murphy's latest in her 'Walker Paper' series about Joanne Walker, shamaness/auto mechanic/cop. Now if that combination doesn't make you want to read this series, I don't know what would!
It's been a chaotic year for Joanne. Her otherworld mentor, Coyote, died in the last book. But as in real life, major events presage major life changes and Joanne has finally (well, mostly) come to terms with all the weirdness that goes with being who she is. She's even spending time learning and practicing. And that's a good thing when her Halloween party is crashed by a few ghosts looking for a body. Then she and her police partner are called to investigate a robbery/murder at the local museum. You would assume the murder part would be the worst...but that would only be true if the robbery didn't involve a relic called Matholwch's Cauldron. So now Joanne has to figure out how to find and destroy a relic while dealing with: the two love interests in her life, an insurance adjustor who's being nosy about Petite, zombies in graveyards, the Wild Hunt, and a teenager who's had a sure vision of Joanne's death! What's a shamaness to do?
I enjoy this series so much. Joanne is NOT your typical heroine. She's almost six feet tall, more into muscle cars than muscle men, and is often resentful of what her birthright has given her. I guess that makes her the 'reluctant heroine' instead of the 'reluctant hero'. Yet her complaints fall just short of 'whine' territory and the combination of mystery, action, and magic is perfectly suited to my tastes.
On a more serious note, this series has much less typical 'romance' and I would rate it PG which means I don't have any problems letting my sons read it...and they love it too! Another keeper for my bulging shelves and another long wait for the next chapter in Joanne's life....more
Once again, I'm left in a quandry by Karen Marie Moning's latest "Dreamfever". It doesn't end on quite the same level of cliffhanger as "Faefever", buOnce again, I'm left in a quandry by Karen Marie Moning's latest "Dreamfever". It doesn't end on quite the same level of cliffhanger as "Faefever", but it was close enough to leave me wondering whether to scream in ecstasy or anguish. Ecstasy because this series is just so darn good...or anguish because now I'll have to wait (probably another year) for the final book of the series "Shadowfever".
This series is intense and DARK. The author has said (several times) that it came to her as a whole and she has written it true to that 'whole'. So don't expect each book to have an ending...this is one story in five parts. So having said that...
This may be my favorite so far (do I always say that?) in the series. The story opens exactly where "Faefever" left off--with Mac in the middle of a three/four (read the book and you'll understand) Death-By-Sex fae sandwich! And the things Barron must do to help her recover her mind...hmmm, wonder if I can find some Death-By-Sex fae? Anyway, the story starts with a bang and the action doesn't let up until the final page. I read this sucker in one sitting like gulping down a favorite milkshake (brain freeze and all).
I can't possibly (and shouldn't anyway) try to recap the events of the book. If you're into this series, you need to go RIGHT THIS SECOND and get the book. If you haven't been reading this series, then you really don't care about the events, right? Suffice to say that Mac learns alot about herself, alot about Barrons (but never enough, eh?), and more than she ever wanted to know about what would happen if the 'Veil' ever fell. Because that's the one hint I WILL give. The 'Veil' falls, and all hell breaks loose.
I loved the book, even with all its darkness and lack of a definite 'ending'. I will pace and mutter and bite my nails until I can find out when the final book in the series will be released. And I can say without a doubt that THIS is a series I will re-read...probably not too long after I finish the final book!! ...more
My Amazon Vine review... "The Eleventh Victim" is a complex murder mystery about a woman who loses her fiance in a senseless crime and then embarks onMy Amazon Vine review... "The Eleventh Victim" is a complex murder mystery about a woman who loses her fiance in a senseless crime and then embarks on a career as a prosecutor. The author, Nancy Grace, was herself a prosecutor in Atlanta GA and she brings her knowledge of the (in)justice system and writes with compelling authority about the twists and turns 'justice' can take.
Hailey Dean's finace was violently murdered shortly before their wedding during a mugging, for a whopping total of $35. The crime propels the young college graduate into a depression that lifts only when she decides to go after the criminals who perpetrate such crimes. She becomes a prosecutor who fights for the victims left behind and her record is nothing short of stellar, 100 wins, no losses. She doesn't DO 'deals'. Instead, she and her investigator sidekick put together strong evidence that results in convictions. Her last case as a prosecutor involved the conviction of a serial killer for the murders of eleven women. When the verdict is read, the killer leaps toward Hailey in the courtroom and is only tackled AFTER she feels his hands close around her neck. That's the moment when Hailey knows she's done. Now it's two years later and Hailey has moved to New York and is a practicing therapist. But when two of her patients are murdered and Hailey's DNA is found at the scenes, her life takes a violent and terrifying turn. Now SHE's the one on the defensive and who, exactly, is after her, isn't clear.
This is author Nancy Grace's first foray into the world of mystery/thriller/fiction and I sometimes got lost in the stories of 'sidebar' characters which include a rich man trying to circumvent environmental protections, a good-ole-boy crooked judge, a friend's new love affair, and a very rich, but very pissed, defense attorney. All these 'other' stories do tie in to the main story, but for me, they mostly detracted from the story at the heart of the book...Hailey's story.
I was left with many questions regarding Hailey's future and also that of a 'wrongly' paroled serial killer! For me at least, I need closure in a book. But the serial killer just fades out and Hailey decides to return to Georgia...to do what I have no idea. That's not a real ending for me.
The plot was clever and even though I quickly figured out the 'bad guy' (other than the serial killer), there were still plenty of red herrings. I did find the flow of the story choppy as it jumped from the side character's stories to Hailey's story regularly. Sometimes it was hard to keep track of who was doing what! Ms. Grace's disgust with 'special interest' politics comes through loud and clear and her portrayal of bargaining and dealing to cater to political aspirations was enough to make me believe some of those bad lawyer jokes...
In the end I did finish "The Eleventh Victim" and I did find it interesting. I must admit that I would be wary of reading Nancy Grace's next novel without getting a better idea of its pace and flow and how she pieced the story together. But I consider an author's first novel a kind of learning experience for both author and reader and I like to think we both get better with age and experience....more
I had a difficult time deciding how to rate "Three's Company". This book is a Samhain Publishing erotic anthology in trade paperback with stories fromI had a difficult time deciding how to rate "Three's Company". This book is a Samhain Publishing erotic anthology in trade paperback with stories from three authors. While all three stories deal with menage, each depicts a different situation and gave me a different 'feel'. All three stories DO have graphic descriptions of oral, anal, and vaginal sex (sometimes all at the same time) AND some light BDSM (bondage, spankings, etc) so if these things bother you...Don't read this book! As far as a rating goes, I decided to rate each story separately and then average the rating for the overall book...so there!
First up is Lorelei James with "Wicked Garden". Billy and Eden were childhood friends and then a bit more. But on Eden's prom night, Billy ran out on her at a very 'delicate' moment. A few years have passed and Billy's back in town working on a consulting job whose ultimate decision could end up costing Eden HER job. The fire between them is still there and it doesn't take long for Billy to make up his hasty exit. So what happens when Eden's OTHER 'friend with benefits' hits town? ***Three stars and 105 pages. Very hot, but I didn't feel much emotion to go with the sex.
Next is "A Question of Trust" by Jess Dee. Gabe is Madeline's dream man and the best lover she's ever had. When his best friend Connor visits, both Gabriel and Connor let Madeline know that they would love to love her...together. Madeline's always thought of herself as a one-man woman and Gabriel is that man, isn't he? ***Three and a half stars and 85 pages. Still very hot, yet I was intrigued by Dee's realistic depiction of a situation that I could see really happening in such a relationship.
Jayne Rylon rounds out the trio with "Nice and Naughty". During a carefree afternoon country drive, Alexa races a motorcycle. She ends up having sex with the stranger on the side of the road and can't quite believe she acutally did that! Now two weeks later, she arrives at a job interview and the jerk acts like he can't remember her! Can anybody say twins? ***Four stars and 92 pages. Even with the brother ick factor, this story had suspense, hot sex, and emotional impact...at least for me.
So overall (unless my math is REALLY bad) I give the "Three's Company" anthology three and a half stars...and I'll round it up for the smoking hot sex throughout!...more