Under the Gun Hannah Jayne.
I haven’t read the earlier books in the series and wondered how difficult it would be to pick up the story. Fears unfounded, Hannah explains enough to make the story and characters clear but not so much that a loyal reader who’s followed the series will get put off. Sophie works at an organisation called the Underground Detection Agency, who are tasked with sorting and cleaning up crimes by supernatural creatures and keeping them out of the public eye. There’s a nice tangled romantic conflict between Sophie who is half human half demon, Alex – a luscious fallen angel ex boyfriend who she still hankers after and Will, her Guardian – good-looking, charming English guy. He’s actually guarding the vessel of Souls contained with Sophie and as she has a penchant for seeking out trouble that is dangerous and hasn’t any helpful superpowers to defend herself she needs someone like that. He’s not much in evidence in this book though being recalled to England which gives lovely Alex a home run…if he’s interested and if Sophie still wants him. They tiptoe round a bit to begin, and get very defensive of each other, its very will they – won’t they? Its all part of the magic of this book. Between trying to save lives, sort crimes, keep out of danger ( that’s a joke!!) and hiding her ex boss who’s life is in danger does she even have time for romance?
I just love Sophie – its great to have a heroine we can relate to, one who doesn’t have miraculous powers to get out of trouble, who’s chaotic and falls headlong into perilous conditions as she doesn’t think problems through, who’s sometimes dangerously loyal to her friends, in short someone just like one of us. Will; well I don’t know much about him but he seems an attractive, good guy, not sure how he and Sophie ended up together although it seems to have been a one off, Alex – oh I’m team Alex all the way 🙂 but then is he right for Sophie will the whole fallen angel drama and redemption going on? Then there’s Sophie’s flatmates, a couple of snarky vampires. I just love Nina’s TV shopping addiction…and a host of other characters that all play their part in the story. Its quite roller coaster with what seem to be different problems for Sophie becoming intertwined in the main plot. I didn’t guess who was the bad guy, couldn’t tell if Sampson was good or bad, wasn’t sure about a couple of other characters that kept me guessing which side they were on. I loved the whole story and the way it played out that kept me guessing, laughed at poor Sophie’s mishaps, shared her embarrassment when she said or did things wrong ( yep – I’m just like her, if it can come out wrong and embarrass me it does)
I would love to read the earlier novels as the quality of writing is excellent and I’d get more I think from this story if I understood the background clearer but never the less it can be read as a standalone although its clear its a series and I’m keen to read more of Sophie’s adventures and romance. I love books with a supernatural slant and a bit of troubled romance thrown in, and to have a heroine I can relate to rather than one who has the power to just Zap out of danger, who has to think as we would in same situation is a real treat. Its so much easier to empathise when we know we’d face the same scenario were we in that position. And of course she’s a great sense of humour and makes me laugh whether intended or not ( getting out of trouble by missing the shot but hitting that bad guy in the rear – getting stabbed by a pair of scissors and worrying about the germs as the guys house was a tip…that’s the way my mind would work too )
Well, Stars: the book is excellent value for money as it will join my re read collection, 321 pages for £3.91 so a nice decent length read. Well edited, with plots that flow and join each other and no gaping holes, kept me entertained and guessing right to the end, accurate spelling and grammar etc. Has to be five stars!
ARC received via Netgalley
Santa Wore Leathers. Vonnie Davis
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book Reviews.
Having just read a couple of fairly heavy paranormals I wanted something light and easy – and this was just perfect. ……..its a short, sweet read, with some great humour. Becca’s a lovely girl, dumped by her ex on Christmas Eve she’s not ready for a new relationship. Then the man next door moves in, sex on legs, he has a steady stream of gorgeous women visiting him. Becca writes about him in her blog, calls him the man whore, and describes him and his visitors in a humorous, whimsical way. She needs to get the blog stepped up as part of her career move. Then she learns more about Wolf, as her neighbour is called, events bring them together and then…just when all’s going well he learns she’s a reporter – and he hates those…
Its a gentle romance, with some spicy parts, lots of humour – and I love Einstein her dog, and his penchant for her underwear….if you’re looking for something light to while away an hour or so this is perfect. Its a short read at 112 pages, but that’s what many busy people want, a book they can finish. Personally I usually want longer books, but sometimes, as in this instance, I just want a light, quick and easy read and this does that.
Stars: four. Fun read, too light for a five from me but a good four.
ARC supplied via Netgalley
Knight Takes Queen. CC Gibbs.
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book Reviews.
I’m always in two minds about trilogies, I love that the length allows for the characters to be fully developed and the plots to be varied and intense, but I hate waiting – and especially hate the growing tendency for authors to end these books on a cliffhanger. However, set that against the fact that this series already has book one and two out so all three can be read back to back, for me maximum enjoyment that way – and I’m in reading bliss. So having received this one for review I decided to buy parts one and two, rather than just read the samples and reviews as I often do. That’s mainly because both are 400+ pages at a bargain 98p/$1.58 each. I really enjoyed both of those, though book two seems very different to the book description? 🙂 and I eagerly began this book.
We pick up where last one left off with Kate and Dominic looking forward to their baby. They’re waiting for his divorce from the sham marriage he was blackmailed into doing to come through, then plan to marry ASAP. Dominic is as controlling as ever, he’s happy to have Kate back in his life and he’s working behind the scenes to set everything into place, so when she agrees to come back to US with him she can leave behind her job and partnership. She doesn’t know this of course 🙂 but is struggling with tiredness, so he feels its only a matter of time til she says yes then he’ll set everything in motion. That man cannot resist micro managing everything to get his own way. At times he has really irritated me, I understand why he is as he is – well partly anyway 🙂 – but he’s so over the top sometimes that if I was Kate I’d have exploded. At time she does explode, challenges him, disagrees with him all the while – though often on things I feel are minor then lets him away with major issues. Its part of the attraction, no-one ever says no to him, and ladies in his past have just rolled over and given him whatever he wants it seems. He’s learned to use sex as a control, and at times Kate comes across as something of a nymphomaniac the way she seems to back track the minute an orgasm is twirled in front of her… There’s sex in this book, on every third or fourth page it seems, in every room, in the car, in the rest-rooms, in their house and in other peoples, and for Dominic its become his way of controlling Kate. At times there’s almost too much sex, though the book is long and there’s plenty of space, I got a bit tired of reading yet another blow by blow account of them making love. Too much seems to dull the message and it goes from being erotic and sensual to being…boring.
Anyway, there they are in seventh heaven when disaster strikes and they struggle to get past it. I really felt for them both here, the emotion was devastating and the after effects so true to life. Ms Gibbs is spot on with how they both felt afterwards, I’m sure what they experienced is something many others in that situation do.
So, a great book, cracking series and an excellent read. Why isn’t is five star for me? Well, the one major “down” in this book is very well handled, did get me choked to tears and made a huge difference but in fact the book was well advanced before that happened, and I felt that up to then the book had a very “happy, happy, happy” feel, and there could have been a little more drama in it. Some jealous exes for example, there must have been plenty of them, or the girl he had to marry – she appears briefly and would have been a terrific candidate for Chief Bitch. Still that’s a small point, and overall its a great series, full of hot, erotic, sensual sex between a duo that are so well written I felt I knew them well, and understood many of their reactions to what was said or happening.
Stars: almost a five, four and a half.
NB: ARC supplied via Netgalley
Lost in New Falls. The Lost in Love Series. Cherie Marks
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book Reviews.
I liked the sound of this and…it was a decent read, good but not great though. Its so packed full of plots and sub plots that it almost felt as if it was trying too hard. Kate was a great lead, and her story believable, and Quentin made a hot sexy hero…but – the story that pulled them back together, the meeting after ten years where she’s changed so much from the tubby, broken hearted girl that left to a stunner, ought to have been almost enough on its own. There’s so much to explore, finding each other again, simmering attraction ( mmm – I love that part of a romance, the push pull and dancing round does she/he want me etc ) potential for jealousy over exes etc and yet the plot devolves into silliness at times with the screenplay going on a tortuous route after being stolen, and the characters that read it seemed just too stereotypical small towns gossips. Maybe its like that in US, its not here in UK. I often feel we suffer too much from those who want to take too close an interest in our lives, but they have nothing on these characters. I’d have been furious that some read my private work, never mind that it was passed around without permission…then there’s the burglaries, and the silliness over what was taken – at times it was like reading a farce not a romance. Its a shame because with fewer plots, and more emphasis on the main ones and the romance I think this would have been a great read for me. Still, as ever everyone likes different things and I’m sure this novel, well written as it is , will appeal to those who want romance and humour delivered in a light hearted way. I like more depth, and more deep drama sadly, so for me it didn’t work as more than just ok 😦 but you may love this sort of read and find it five star 🙂
Its well written and edited and very reasonably priced at $4.13/£2.58 for 195 pages if this is the sort of read you enjoy.
ARC supplied via Netgalley
Before Midnight. Blood Prince Series (Book One). Jennifer Blackstream
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book Reviews.
This sounded interesting, something a bit different from the usual paranormal romance. Its a kind of retelling of Cinderella, not an update but a remake, a story to include werewolves. Take note: the prologue is very important. It doesn’t seem to relate to this book until the end, and then I realised that its a theme that draws this book into an overall story with further retelling of famous tales.
Its quite “light” in feel, no real dark, strong emotions or deep, heavy sensuality. Its very true to the original Cinderella story in feel, with there being all the elements of step sisters, wicked step mother, handsome prince, even the “slipper” and the fairy godmother have undergone a transformation. Its was an interesting read but…not one that really resonated with me, and I won’t look for more.
I guess this novel is perfect for those who like a quick, light and easy paranormal read, with an element of romance and a surprise in the tail 🙂 I tend to want deeper, heavier reads and thankfully we have authors that write to suit all our tastes. I didn’t really enjoy this but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t well written, it was, the plots all line up neatly and there are no unanswered questions – or horrible cliffhangers, even though this is clearly a series. Its simply a matter of me wanting something different from my reading materials.
Stars: two and a half, I didn’t dislike the story, I just didn’t really like it either for the reasons given.
ARC supplied via Netgalley
Winter’s Heat. Zoë Archer.
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews.
I didn’t look closely enough at this before requesting, was too drawn in by the Downton comparison. My bad! Its a novella – just 100 pages, and I rarely read those unless they accompany a series I’m familiar with. This book encapsulated exactly the reasons I personally avoid them. Its well written, full of believable and likeable (and dislikeable too where needed) characters, but its simply too short for me to get really engrossed and lost in the story. I’m a quick reader so this was soon finished and I felt slightly unsatisfied. I wanted more – of the characters, of the story etc but there wasn’t more.
The description covers the basic plot pretty well, Ada doesn’t expect to see Jack but he’s fresh back off a mission and asks to take this case to meet with her again. There wasn’t really enough drama to give me the highs and lows I need in my reading, but again novellas rarely have the length for that which is why I avoid them, and that’s the main reason for my lower star rating. I’m sure for many people this would be a five, and the writing quality certainly deserves it – its just the (in)action of the plot that let it down for me.
Anyway, if you like a shortish read – and many people with limited time or slow readers do- this book may well appeal. Its a complete story, well written and the details fit the time period. I guess this is part of an established series and if I’d read that I’d have got more from it but as it is its not one I really enjoyed. ( edit: just looked at there are two Nemesis full length novels due out in Nov 2013 – I think they’d be well worth reading)It’s priced at £2.99 for 100 pages which is quite expensive compared to the full length ones which are both £4.99 for 384 pages.
Stars: three – a longer book, more in depth action and emotion would have rated higher and I think the forthcoming full length books will likely do that for me.
ARC supplied via Netgalley.
Black Widow Demon Paula Altenburg.
This is the second book in the Demon Outlaws series. I’d not read the first but found it reasonably easy to pick up the plot anyway. We start with Blade, he’s watching Raven and her cruel stepfather in a crowd in the town centre. She’s on trial for her life, one reminiscence of the old Witch Trials in that she’s to be burned at the stake, die and she’s innocent, live and she’s guilty of being half demon so will be killed….and her offence? “Seducing” her stepfather – or in her eyes stabbing him when he tried it on…. Just as happens in so many worlds in this one females are always to blame, and Justice her stepfather knows she’s a half demon, in a world where that’s not acceptable, and they are killed regardless of their behaviour. I really felt for Raven – what was she to do, and where could she go. No one dared support her as Justice was a Godseeker and represented the law in the town. Blade is watching from afar. He’s an ex Assassin, just passing through the town, but wonders what she’s done. By a series of events they end up escaping together, and looking for her old friend Creed.
I liked Raven, felt so sorry for her and the other Spawn who were judged on their heritage and not their actions. Scared people do that though, and having finally banished Demons, they thought if they got rid of the Spawn also maybe the Goddesses would return. Sadly the good Spawn got caught in the crossfire. Blade – a quiet and just man despite his past, protected Raven at first though obligation and honour, but they became much closer though both were unsure of how it would end. There were some steamy sex scenes between the two which fitted well into the plot. There’s other characters on their journey too – more spawn, both good and bad, and other Assassins plus the ever present wicked Justice, who is determined to get Raven, and a few full Demons who can’t enter the mortal world on their own but can be summoned.
Its a story I thought would be a five star for me when I first began it, but as I continued somehow the people and plots didn’t really engender that feeling that I simply had to keep reading, couldn’t put it down, needed to know what would happen. It was good, but not quite good enough for a five from me, though as ever that’s personal and I’m sure others will rate it differently. I just didn’t really get the connection I needed with the characters, I liked Raven and Blade but didn’t love them, and when they were in danger I wasn’t on edge of seat wondering how they’d get out of it. It just seemed a long journey for nothing really, and I felt a bit unsatisfied, unfinished at the ending. I’m sure that’s because there will be further books but though I love series I think this one isn’t one for me.
Stars: its well written and plotted but just didn’t quite hook me so it’s a four. Its a good book but not great. I read and enjoyed it, but won’t read read or keep it.
ARC supplied via Publishers.
Operation Saving Daniel . Nina Croft
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book Reviews.
I love Nina’s Bitter-sweet Magic and Blood novels so thought I’d try this one. I’m a great fan of paranormal romance when its done well, and having enjoyed Nina’s writing I thought I knew what to expect. As ever though Nina throws in a few curve-balls….
Anyway, Melissa, I liked her – as a die hard romantic I love the idea of still loving someone after ten years of no contact…Through a combination of circumstances Lissa finds herself back with her old friends and their brother Daniel. He’s about to be engaged though and the sisters call his girlfriend The Evil One. After meeting Sophia Lissa can see why, but Daniel is so changed from the man she remembered, and doesn’t act like a man in love. So she tries to see what’s happening with the pair, but gets sucked into danger and a world she never envisaged. Still loving Daniel she does her best to help him, even though he wants her out of the danger.
Its a fun read, with some tender and sensual scenes between Lissa and Daniel. Sophia was a great bitch, I do think a “good” bad person adds to the drama in a romance ,and in fact I’d like to have seen a bit more of her and Lissa together, but its a fairly short book so it’s inevitable that scenes had to be chosen carefully to keep the flow balanced.
Its not an in-depth, dark, heavy paranormal but a sweet and easy romance with a few dangerous moments thrown in. I enjoyed it as a light relief type book, but its not one I’d keep for re reading. It’s currently priced at £0.99/$1.61 for 200 pages so its excellent value if you like a light and easy to read fantasy romance.
Stars: four, a good fun read.
NB: ARC supplied via Entangled Publishing.
Some Like It Sinful. Robbie Terman.
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book Reviews.
I’m a sucker for a romance, one that has something extra to lift it about the bland offerings that proliferate the book lists. I know many many people love those, I need something more though 🙂 Anyway, Robbie delivers that here. This book made me laugh, and made me sad ( that’s always needed for balance IMO.) I guessed part of the plot but that’s fine, it was written well and didn’t spoil my enjoyment. There are some great characters here besides Chloe and Griffin – they have some friends that are interesting and in Chloe’s case sounded familiar. Looking up Robbie’s other works that’s when I saw the novel about Ty and Ashton, who appear several times in this book. I do like these interlinked novels, and would like to read Some Like It Spicy, their story when I’ve time.
Anyway – back to this book, It was a fun story, light-hearted but not a shallow read, and had several sub plots to keep things interesting. The sex scenes were….. hot! Very hot, and fitted the plots really well. Sometimes authors write sex for the sake of spicing up a novel and its just doesn’t work, but here it fits perfectly and feels just right. That Griffin knows how to please a lady 🙂
I enjoyed the way both characters learned things about themselves too – about how they let their pasts, and fears about it, dominate the now and the future. It’s touches like that which make characters feel real, like friends we could sit and chat with over a glass of wine. I need my book characters to feel genuine, to have problems and not lead a perfect life. Chloe and Griffin certainly had their share of problems! The only thing that kept this from being a five star read was that though the highs were perfect, the low point wasn’t quite as “down” and sad as I like – I like to wallow and feel tearful when things go wrong, and though I felt sad for them I wasn’t on the edge of tears.
Priced at £3.05/$4.92 for 300 pages its good value and a fun read.
Stars: almost five – four and a half.
ARC supplied via Publisher.
Covets have all the sexiness, emotion, and happily ever after that readers have come to expect and love from Entangled. They are firmly grounded in the contemporary world, but each novel brings in supernatural twists, breaking the contemporary and paranormal rules, alike. To find out more about their titles, chat with authors, participate in special events, and to find out what books you’ll be coveting next, visit the <a href=”http://www.entangledpublishing.com/category/covet/”>Entangled website</a>, follow them on <a href=”https://twitter.com/covetbooks”>Twitter</a>, LIKE their <a href=”https://www.facebook.com/pages/Covet-an-Entangled-Publishing-Imprint/358677437486041″>Facebook page</a>, and join the <a href=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/310089535797538/”> Book Club</a>.<br />
Today I’m happy to be featuring Covet’s November releases which is very exciting because in celebration of these three great new books, they are on sale for just $0.99 for the first week of release only. So they are perfect to download and read over the long holiday weekend between all the hussle and bussle for a nice little break.
Also, make sure to hop on twitter tonight, 11/25 at 8PM to join in the #CovetBash. The authors of these fabulous books will be joining in the fun, and there will be lot’s of chances to win prizes, including a grand prize giveaway of Covet’s entire backlist to one lucky winner! Details http://www.entangledinromance.com/2013/11/24/introducing-covets-november-releases-0-99-sale
Operation Saving Daniel by Nina CroftAt eighteen, Melissa seduced her best friend Julia’s brother only to run away shortly after. While Daniel was her fairytale prince, Lissa didn’t believe in happy ever afters.
Ten years and a near death experience later, Lissa is ready for a husband and family. But a cry for help from Julia puts that dream on hold. Daniel is acting weird and he’s about to marry his long term girlfriend—AKA The Evil One. Someone needs to save him.
Daniel has never stopped loving Lissa. Ten years ago when he gave her a little freedom, he always intended that one day they would be together. Right up until the moment he was bitten by a werewolf. Now, Daniel has to hide what he is. He won’t risk anyone else, especially the woman he loves.
But Lissa is back. Their attraction is stronger than ever and Lissa is nothing if not tenacious.
<b>The Awakening: Britton by Abby Niles
The Awakening #3
“I would lick that man up one side and down the other.”
Half-shifter and lead SPAC agent, Val Calhoun, has listened to women gush over the Don Juan of the precinct for the last four years. Yeah, Detective Britton Townsend is hot and has stunning blue eyes, but that foul mouth he saves only for her? What a waste of good looks. And no way does Val want that mouth anywhere near hers.
When the shifter community is threatened, Val is assigned to the case…and fails. So the High Council turns to the rogue shifter they’d sentenced to twenty years as a human–that same obnoxiously sexy Detective Townsend. And sends the two arch-enemies deep into the North Carolina Mountains-—together, and alone.
Being stuck in a tiny honeymoon cabin with Miss Castration and only one bed is definitely not Britton’s idea of a good time. But the High Council doesn’t take no for an answer. After his shifter abilities are restored, Brit is once again susceptible to the dreaded, irreversible bonding instinct, the Drall. Thankfully, all he’s ever felt for Val is intense loathing, no reason to worry. Right? All he has to do is solve this case pronto, and he can go back to his footloose Casanova ways. That is, if they don’t kill each other first. Or worse…fall in love.
Missed the first book in the Awakening series? While these books stand alone, it can be fun to go back and see how the other couple got together. And in celebration of book #3’s release, book one, The Awakening: Aidan is on sale for just $0.99 as well, so grab it while you c
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Dragos Takes a Holiday A Story of the Elder Races Thea Harrison.
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
I’ve read several of Thea’s novels, and the first Elder Races one featuring Dragos and Pia is still my favourite so I was really pleased to get this for review. I love Dragos, he has that mix of Alpha male thing going with an at times naivety about the way the modern world works even though he’s a key player in it. His attitude is “if I want it I’ll have it” 🙂 fine but sometimes a bit of tact and discretion is needed. Luckily he’s got Pia who’s learned to manage him really well in the year they’ve been together. They have the Peanut now too, Liam, their baby dragon and he’s made a huge change in Dragos life. Anyway Pia decides Dragos needs a break and sets about it so he thinks the whole thing is his idea – hence the books about treasure hunting, he loves sparkly! They set off with friends Hugh and Eva for the Bermuda islands…Dragos being old knows many legends of treasure lost in that area. They find out though that treasure hunting isn’t the innocent pastime Pia expected, but one which will place them all in danger.
As ever I love Dragos, and Pia is just perfect for him. It was great to “hear” Liam’s voice when he was thinking of what he was going to do, what had been happening – it gave a child’s sweet perspective on events. All I can say is that with the way he’s growing Dragos and Pia face a fun and heart stopping future!
Its a short read – 90 pages, and priced at £1.91/$3.08. I really enjoyed it as a bit of fun, but its sweet and light, no real drama and its one that’s a one off read only for me. As I know the characters it allowed me to fully understand the background info, someone new to the series might not get as much out as I did in the same way I struggled with a novella recently when I hadn’t read the main series.
ARC supplied via Netgalley.
Stars: a solid four, a good fun read, but too short and light for a five from me.