Archive | June 4, 2013

Fire Inside (A Chaos Novel) Kristen Ashley.

 

ARC supplied by Netgalley

I fell in love with Kristen’s works after getting the wonderful Knight (The Unfinished Hero Series) on a kindle free special. I loved the way her work is dialogue based, and the characters feel so real I can laugh or cry with the. Some of the later books I found were not so great though with eternal pages of “feelin me?” (simper) “ yes xzy, feelin you” The heroines seemed to have gone from strong women with problems into simpering twee girlies…and I didn’t like it. What a treat then to find Lanie, heroine of Fire Inside, who’s strong and has self respect. She starts the balling rolling by asking Hop if he “wants a F***” – hurrah, a lady who knows what she wants again. I love Lanie – yes on occasion I wanted to shake her and ask what the hell she thought she was doing, but when a book makes you feel like that at least you know the story has you gripped! She’s been through so much, was lonely and yet afraid to love again. Then there’s the other half, Hop, typical biker Alpha who quickly fell in love with Lanie though neither of them were anywhere near ready to admit to feeling like That! Kristen’s books revolve around this type of Alpha hero but fortunately they’re always right. Good job as they never argue, just assume that their way is the right way and steamroller though any objections. I still get a bit fed up of the abbreviated language, I know it adds character but as a reader frankly I’d like to see a bit of variation.

Where the wonderful Knight, Law Man and Mystery Man novels stood out for me was in the drama, the part where the hero needs to sweep in to save the day and the heroine’s life is in danger and Fire Inside lacks that for me. We have the usual family interventions, and relationship misunderstandings but I never quite got so engrossed with those and had the caught breath, shaky heart feelings the other books had engendered. The breakup was really quite brief, when Hawk left Gwen in Mystery man I was moved to tears and had that “oh no!” moment but with Fire I just didn’t feel that 😦 and I Need the Angst in a romance to make the loving so much sweeter. When Lanie and Hop separated it just didn’t move me, yes I felt sad for her but somehow the whole section didn’t work for me. Maybe the bar’s been set so high now its not easy to achieve?

Still, as a classic KA novel its a cracker and that goodness Lanie has her flaws but is no TSTL heroine, I really can’t deal with them. It was good to catch up with some of the others in the Chaos MC too, they’re a great bunch of characters and these stand alone books set around the same groups of people make such a change from the eternal cliffhanger trilogies we’re currently seeing. When I read a book I want to have closure at the end not wait months for the next part, then months more to see the ending 😦

Well edited and written as you’d expect of course and a great way to escape for a few hours. For KA readers once again a great book to lose yourself in.

Stars: four – not quite the drama I need for a five.

 

Aris Returns: A Vampire Love Story Devin Morgan.

 

 

Aris Returns: A Vampire Love Story: An Infinity Diaries Novel

I received this book free via Netgalley in exchange 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.

 

Psychologist Sarah Hagan has been through a difficult divorce, is dating a man her best friend doesn’t like as she feels he’s not good for Sarah. He’s very neglectful and Sarah puts up with his late date cancellations. Her friend, a parole officer, asks her to use her regression techniques on a youth offender (Carlos) to help him deal with his anger. She feels Sarah can help him avoid a life of crime.

 

Carlos is initially uncooperative, but once the hypnosis begins Sarah unravels what seems to be a very real past life of a very old vampire (2,000 years old!) from his creation in the time of Alexander the great to his time in the court of Henry Tudor. I love the historical period in this book with the Tudor period being one of my favourites in history. The scenes her are really well written and tie in with what we know of history with of course some story-tale drama thrown in for the purpose of this novel. As the sessions go on Sarah finds it increasingly difficult to disbelieve the life Aris is describing and his insistence that he is a vampire as the experiences described are so realistic. In time she becomes very attracted and entranced by Carlos, and also feels drawn to Aris. She knows she must keep her distance and be professional with Carlos and yet its a struggle -and as for Aris….. There’s also the difficulty that Carlos troubled life could put both her and his family in danger.

 

Sarah starts to have very erotic dreams and feels drawn to Aris yet her logical mind struggles with this concept and of course she’s really there to help Carlos, I felt for her struggle here – she’s trying to do the right thing, listen to her instincts but these ware with her practical and logical nature. The historical sections are really well written and I could feel the drama happening. I liked Sarah – and love Aris – but then I’m a sucker for a vampire story and this was one with a twist. Initially I didn’t think I’d like it but the book gradually drew me in and I began to feel I was there immersed in the characters actions and problems.

 

This book was a hit and a miss with me – I love the concept but at times I got a bit lost over what was happening and my attention wandered. Usually when I’m “into” a good book the outside world takes second place but I didn’t get there with this one. I’m not really sure why that was – on the face of it there’s everything I like in it and yet somehow it doesn’t quite gel. I felt the ending was a bit rushed after all the long stories and build up in the book and wasn’t entirely happy with it being so ambiguous – I could put my own conclusion to the story for the future but would rather Devin did it. Then I read further about the book for interest and find this is the first part of a trilogy so it makes much more sense and the slowness of the world building takes on a new context for me. I think what I need to do is go back and re read as there’s so much in this book that perhaps it was just too much to take in at one session ( I tend to read right through a book and this one is quite a long one ). I do want to read more of Sarah and Aris so will look forward to the next part of the story and I’m sure once the characters are clear in my mind as to their context to the story then I’ll enjoy the next book far more. Its difficult when introducing a trilogy to get enough details out to flesh the world created without losing the reader along the way. I was a bit lost here as I said but I think the second read will clear it in my mind and give me more enjoyment form the book.

 

At 335 pages for £4.11 its reasonably priced and I do like books that are longer, but I think some of the writing could have been tightened a little to keep interest close where my attention was wandering. But that could just be me and the problem of taking in too much new info in one long session.

 

Stars: well, I’d like to give 4 and for content and drama its certainly worth it but because I struggled at times I’m giving three and a half.

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