Archive | March 16, 2013

fifth book in a fantastic gripping shapeshifter series

About Face Amy Lee Burgess

I received this via publishers in return for an honest review. I don’t gush and give false praise – I don’t believe that helps readers or authors so what you read is what I truly feel about a book.

I’ve loved this series – its become one of, possibly The most favourite series. I first read the third book via review request and was hooked, and bought the first and second immediately I’ve been lucky enough to get ARCs of the fourth and fifth books.

Last time I was really sad that Stanzie and Murphy appeared to have separated with her staying in US and he going back to Ireland and MacTire. I understand why Amy wrote the book that way – it gave space for Stanzie to grow, but I’m so in love with Murphy and desperately wanted Stanzie and him to be together – it seemed clear to me, if not to them, that they were both deeply in love. Anyway in this book we find that Murphy had returned to Mac tire to help his Alpha – Stanzie’s cousin has a dream that he needs Stanzie’s help and this gives her the push she needed to go to Ireland and see if she could get things together with her and Murphy. She is Advisor to Jason Allerton along with Murphy and Jason asks her to try to get Murphy to back off from his quest to find the person responsible for the death of his first bond mate.

As always once Stanzie gets involved what seems like a simple problem becomes more complex. There a bit in the book where someone says about the conspiracy within the pack “its like peeling layers off an onion, the more you remove the deeper it gets” (or something along those lines) and that’s exactly how I feel about it. What started from the beginning as a simple plot has got deeper and more complex. I don’t know how Amy comes up with all these ideas, the mesh together so well to form absolutely believable plots within the main arc of the novel. We see much more of Murphy though he and Stanzie begin with some sticky, fierce moments. Stanzie is not one to back down from confronting her fears or saying the truths she sees. She has some great snarky commenst and some very deep emotional momenst that had me in tears. Again. I don’t think there’s been one book yet in the sereis that hasn’t had me in tears at least once and this one has one huge tearjerker where I wanted to cry “ nooo….” and others where I felt a lump in my throat forming as I was reading and the prickling behind my eyes. The problem is that life isn’t black or white and the deeper Stanzie looks the more grey and clouded everything becomes. Do she and Murphy work it out? Well, I’m not telling, you’ll have to read it for yourself! : ) Although if you’ve read previous books you’ll be like me – panting at the bit waiting for the next book.

I’m so glad that this series is continuing, Amy has put so much into it that there’s lots of scope for many further directions for the conspiracy to take, and much further for Stanzie to journey. I really don’t know how she keeps coming up with such spectacular plots for each novel. I love also that each book has hints of what’s to come but the major plots are complete and not left as horrible, horrible cliff hangers. Its a pet peeve I have that I hate waiting months to find out what happens next and yet more and more authors seem to be doing that. If there are cliffhanger endings I simply don’t buy any in series until they are complete- I’ve far too many that I’m waiting on the next part and its irritating. So a Huge Thanks Amy for not doing that and leaving me in an angry, frustrated condition : )

As always the book is impeccably edited – I know Amy works hard at this and I guess Lyrical set a high standard as all their books are well edited and as error free as reasonable. The book is due out in April and I don’t yet have any pricing info but once again is a good long meaty read that kept me engrossed for many hours – and I’m a quick reader!

Stars: yes, loved the book, will join my keepers file and gets full five stars.

Stars: yes, loved the book, will join my keepers file and gets full five stars.

sensual m/m romantic thriller

The Long Con Lori Toland

I received this via Netgalley in return for an honest review. I don’t gush and give false praise – I don’t believe that helps readers or authors so what you read is what I truly feel about a book.

Nathaniel Bradley (Bradley )is a British Agent seeking to recover a stolen Fabergé egg. Its actually been stolen from his grandmother. In order to infiltrate the gang seeking to sell it on to an unsuspecting collector he has to pose as a high priced prostitute. Once in the gang he is tasked with seducing the buyer, Tony Terranova Jr – the heir to a Mafia dynasty. It makes things dangerous for Bradley – even more so when he finds he is very attracted to Tony and Tony clearly wants him…he deviated from the plan and starts winging it and the gang keep trying to bring him back to target. Although he’s not bothered about tricking the gang – as con artists they are good targets to bring in – but he feels guilty that he’s conning Tony as he seems such a nice and honest man, not at all what he expected from someone so high in the Mafia family.

I really enjoyed this book, the sexual chemistry between Bradley and Tony was sizzling and at times very erotic and sensual. Bradley discovers by accident that Tony is a submissive and being a top himself they found that they had an added dimension to the sexual relationship. They really felt like real people to me, and I was carried along with them on their romantic forays… I empathised with Bradley when he had feelings of guilt over the part he was playing in deceiving Tony, and felt for Tony in the way he was quickly so taken with Bradley and hoping for a longer term romance. But as ever things aren’t as straightforward as they seem, and the story takes directions I didn’t expect and the results were just what I wanted though it took some emotional moments to get there. There wasn’t any weird plot endings where Bradley got out of a scrape by some unbelievable means – you know the sort I mean, where something weird happens and suddenly all is sorted. Lori gives us credible endings and ways out fo the dilemmas she puts her characters in and that’s what made it so good for me. . Its well written and edited and was a treat to read, with the plot taking unexpected diversions that kept me gripped and the romance angle was very tender. I felt for both parties when things began to heat up and become critical.

The Long Con is a terrific read, good solid romance wrapped up in a believable storyline. I hate that so many erotic books are little more than sex scene upon sex scene with little or no story. I need a good back-story to balance the heat and romance and make it an enjoyable read and this book delivers that for me. Its joined my keepers list. At £4.54 for 235 pages it is a little expensive but if like me you’ll re read the story then that becomes a more value for money price.

Stars: a solid four.

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