Dark Spirit. Spirit Wild Series 2. Kate Douglas
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book reviews.
I really enjoyed the first in this series, Dark Wolf, so was excited to see this up for review. Its a continuation of the series,this time focussing on Chanku pack members and lovers Jace and Gabe. They find Romy in the woods escaping from the horrific life she’s had in the religious cult into which she was born. She’s near to death, but they manage to save her, and need to help her keep free from the cult members who are out to find and kill her. She knows nothing about Chanku, and has only just realised she can shift to wolf. The men explain to her how she’s also Chanku, and offer for her to come back to their pack with them, but to accompany them while they finish their annual wild wolf survey first.
Romy learns so much about herself, not least that the Chanku are a very sexual group, and both healing and shifting create a strong sexual urge that’s perfectly natural. They form a close connection with Romy, both sexual and friendly, and Jace feels sure she’s his Mate, though he’s treading slowly as she’s been through so much, and had such a lot of new information thrust at her.
Meeting the two isn’t the end of the danger for Romy, the cult members hate shifters and are determined to kill her, and are tracking her, Jace and Gabe with a view to capturing or killing them all. Even though hunting wolves is forbidden on the land they’re on, that hasn’t stopped them from shooting a wild wolf, and they seem to feel that they are above any law, quoting God as their excuse.
As with book one I really enjoyed this, but with one big, hige, massive stumbling block though. Once again there was some hot and steamy sex scenes both m/f, m/m, and m/f/m so only read if these won’t offend you. Its a good story surrounding the sex scenes too, and I like the way it joins on to the first book, shedding further light on the Chanku and their origins and what they plan to do now humans know about them.
Now for that stumbling block 😦 I get that there are religious cults that abuse women and children, and I’ve no problem with fiction including that – what I did find hard to take was the fact that Romy was so very, very young when her abuse took place. I’m not saying we should ignore things like this, that’s wrong and its up to everyone to stand out against it where they can but – I don’t like extremes of it cropping up in my fiction. I don’t want sanitised, restricted fiction, but there has to be some stop lines and this is one for me. Romy’s age when it started was mentioned again, and again, and again and each time it made me feel very uncomfortable even though its fiction. I’m sure this won’t bother many people, but for me it was a real factor in bringing down the overall enjoyment of an excellent story. If she’d been 12 or so I could have coped – that’s still wrong of course, but I’d have been able to accept it as part of the story more easily. Younger than that just made me feel very uneasy about it’s inclusion in the story. It’s excellent value at £1.86 for 234 pages.
Stars: three and a half. Without that stumbling block I’d have given this four and a half so bear that in mind if you feel differently to me about issues like that.
ARC supplied by Netgalley
Love Songs for the Road. Farrah Taylor
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book reviews.
I do like contemporary romance, and especially ones with some kind of added extra – in this case the rock star background. Ryan needs a job, Marcus needs a nanny. I liked Ryan right from the start, when she walks out on Marcus as she feels he’s not taking the interview seriously. (but to me Ryan is a boys name and every now and then I’d think “who’s he?” ) She’s a strong personality, sexy body and loving nature. The kids love her very quickly and Marcus has to keep telling himself “hands off” as he’s embroiled in a custody battle with his ex.
Marcus is a really nice guy for the Rock Star sort – they’re usually played as hard drinking, hard living, uncaring and promiscuous men, but he’s very sweet, loves his kids and doesn’t live up to the image we usually have. It was clear he had a good relationship with his kids, and a couple of good close friends, and apart from the jerkish start, he came across as a really large-hearted man, loving father, responsible to his fans and talented musician. Perfect package 🙂
Love though… sneaks in as it has its way….and the press and media are all eyes on Ryan. That’s not what she wants, and she’s worried that her upcoming university place will be affected adversely by the publicity. As the media do she’s been labelled with some unsavoury names, and lots of things have been taken out of context and turned around to show her in a bad light.
I enjoyed the book, its a sweet easy to read romance. I’d have liked a bit more depth though, more drama etc. All the potential factors were there, the ex, the jealous co star, the whole rock star world, but what we got was a kind of rock star romance lite…fine if that’s what you love, and perfectly well written and an easy way to lose yourself for a few hours. For me though it made the book good, but not great. Its 208 pages for £2.44 so reasonably priced.
Stars: three and a half.
ARC supplied via Netgalley