Archive | May 11, 2014

Serafina and the Psycho Sous-Chef, Serafina’s 4, Marie Treanor

Serafina and the Psycho Sous-Chef (The Serafina's Series)

Serafina and the Psycho Sous-Chef, Serafina’s 4, Marie Treanor
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Marie has two great series running concurrently, this one and the Blood Hunters. I love them both. She has an easy to read style of writing, and comes up with some interesting and fun plots. Each book builds on earlier stories, so though I’ve no doubt a reader new to Serafina could follow this book you’d get greater enjoyment and understanding by starting with the first novel.
I remember Linnie from the earlier book, she’s a very different person now, and was such a fun character. Phil, I’ve long had a soft spot for him, he’s far sharper than the drunken, careless persona he uses and this book shows him at his best. Of course it wouldn’t be Serafina’s without Sera and Blair, and the gang of Jilly, Jack etc. Each have their own special niche and its great when the book features all the gang. It allows for plots to be stretched to their full potential without any dumbing down, plot holes, or pulling out of last minute new skills…that annoys me when characters do that and thankfully its a technique Marie doesn’t employ.
Once again what seem like disconnected events have a thread that’s running through them and connects them and Sera’s skills in working it out with her team are put to the test. Its a great read, as ever from Marie, and one I’ll look forward to re reading. Even though the books are connected each one is a standalone and doesn’t have any cliffhangers – hurrah – as I Hate them! If you like your paranormal with some realistic adventures and some sensual and spicy sex scenes you’ll love this.
Stars: Five, one for the keeper files.
ARC received via Netgalley

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The Bad Moon Boxed, Books 1-4, Jackie Sexton

The Bad Moon Boxed, Books 1-4, Jackie Sexton

review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews

I love paranormal romance, and with the additions of the rock band aspect this sounded fun. Well, it started well but…reminded me of a technique one of the Law School lecturers used to say solicitors employ – the Blunderbuss Approach – throw everything at the case and hope something sticks. This novel has “larger” but stunning female lead, hot rock star guys on tour, best friends since school, dangers from all corners, werewolves, demons, nymphs, and some kind of supernatural KKK type organisation only with werewolf not racial differences…throw in some female ( and male) jealousies, problem upbringing and family, lots of secrets that slowly get revealed, and lots of hot sex and that sums this book up. It felt overcrowded, and there wasn’t time enough to appreciate either the people or the problem.
For me it was just too much – too OTT. The potential was there for a good read but it just felt like too much was used, a simpler approach might have worked better for me – this felt like a YA book but with sex thrown in. I didn’t like the jumping from one person to another, at times the female lead was making out heavily with one guy, then just a very short time ( hours) later with another. I didn’t understand why another guy was engaged to one person while clearly he had feelings for someone else. It happens and its what makes novels fun, but we need some kind of motive, some kind of explanation and here I just felt we were given facts and scenes without any real background.
Sadly a book that didn’t work for me 😦 though I’m sure other readers – the YA readership – will perhaps feel differently. Maybe its just me – after all I’m one person, this is my opinion but everyone wants something different.
Stars: Sorry, a two. Just didn’t cut it for me.
ARC supplied via Netgalley

The Last Good Knight Part V: The Last Good Night, Tiffany Riesz

The Last Good Knight Part V: The Last Good Night (Mills & Boon Spice) (The Original Sinners: The Red Years - short story)

 

The Last Good Knight Part V: The Last Good Night, Tiffany Riesz
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
So, with the perpetrator caught Lance and Nora have been making up for lost time, plenty of beatings and sex, sex and more sex…and Nora finds Lance more and more the perfect Submissive. They just seem to gel together so well. I can see what she’s thinking and my inner voice is crying “No, no, no. You and Soren belong together” but…mentally she’s wondering…maybe?… Could they? …but in the meantime his family situation has upset her so much she goes off to see someone she shouldn’t, to see if he can help. “ Been arrested again Nora?” both he and his wife greet her with 🙂 That’s Nora, never quite know what she’s going to do, or has done. She honest though is Nora, unrepentant, open, and not ashamed of what she is, and she’s a real soft side where she’s always trying to help people in some way. I remember from one of the Sinners quartet that she paid for the schooling of one little boy anonymously. He’d been bullied before, and was doing really well at the private school, but his parents couldn’t afford it so Nora paid, and it was deemed a scholarship or something…She really has got a heart of gold.
Anyway – she and Lance have some really tough decisions in this book, its a very bitter-sweet episode, and yet as always Tiffany manages to intersperse these tough parts with Nora’s irreverent humour running between the sadness. As before it’s priced at £1.49, for 30 pages this time.
Stars: and again full five. My only reservations about this serial is the price. I can’t think of many authors where I’d be prepared to pay that, but thankfully Tiffany’s writing is the sort you can read and re read.
ARC supplied via Netgalley

Well, that should tide readers over until The Saint ( the white years book one) comes out later this month…I’ve reviewed it and its perfect, love it. Noras early years meeting Soren and Kingsley…

The Saint (The Original Sinners: The White Years - Book 1)

 

 

Soul Surrender, Katana Collins

Soul Surrender: 3 (Soul Stripper)

 

Soul Surrender, Katana Collins
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book reviews.
I hadn’t read the first book, loved the second and was eager to get started on this one. Once again poor Monica is spearheading danger, and the adventure runs through accompanied by lots of erotic, sensual, sexy scenes. There are some great characters, and with the flashbacks to history ( that still get me a bit disorientated at times) I’m learning that each of them seems to have a hidden side, and that they are not just the person they present to the world but have deep inner feelings and motives. Monica, she’s that same lovely demon 🙂 she still tries to be good, to do her job and survive but within the moral restraints she set herself centuries ago. I just love her, she’s making the best of the cr appy life she’s been dumped with, working, getting along with friends and trying – but as always – failing through no fault of her own. Now there’s a price on her head and her friends are concerned about her safety but no-one seems to know what they can do except try to find who’s behind it.
Drew is still missing since his trip into Hell in the last book, but she’s convinced that he’s not in Hell now, but out in the world somewhere. She’s trying to run his coffee shop for him til he returns while still working for boss Lucien, keeping Demon boyfriend Damien happy – he’s the man of many secrets but he’s not the only one. Sometimes I think everyone but Monica his hiding something. Of course this book she’s also got a secret – she’s gained new powers and is confused, she’s never heard of a succubus being able to do what she can, but before she gets a chance to discuss it with Lucien he’s disappeared, while standing in for her at the time…Seems the war for her has heated up but who can she trust? Who can help and what can they do?
Well, alongside searching for Lucien, and trying to escape capture there’s the same quirky, funny and at times emotional dramas being played out. We meet a couple of new people, but all the old cast are there and its like meeting old friends. I feel I know them that well. I so agreed with the point Julian made at the end! Once again its a five star read that had me glued to the tale until it ended. Definitely one to join the keepers file for re-reading. It’s priced at 2.47 for 321 pages on kindle so has the length to get fully into the plot and characters, and is a great price.
Stars: five, another cracker.
ARC supplied via Netgalley
Edit: I contacted Katana to see if there were more books planned. This is the end of the current series but there may be some spin offs featuring other characters such as Jules and Damien in the future. I hope so, its been a riveting read.

Called by Fire, Delwyn Jenkins.

Called by Fire: The Watchtower Chronicles 1

 

Called by Fire, Delwyn Jenkins.
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
I love paranormal romance so this was a novel I was looking forward to. Kamryn, fire witch in training, was a great female lead. Strong and gutsy, not one of those TSTL ladies, I can’t stand those. So she was perfect to play against Alex, the Knight and male lead. He was a well written character too, strong, courageous and yet had the “old scholar” gentlemanly thing going on, which fitted well with the fact he was hundreds of years old. I loved the rapport the two had right from the start, when Kam puts him in his place and instead of getting all “I’m a knight, you should respect me..” he admires her attitude.
There’s a lot going on here, introduction of a new world setting, witches, knights and others, along with humans in The World Below..then there’s a murder and another missing witch to investigate, along with the fact of the schism between the Knights and the witches. I’m looking forward to further novels in this series, there’s been a lot of building in this one and maybe that’s why the actual story didn’t rate a five from me. Its good but not great, I was interested but it didn’t get me emotionally, but the world created is entrancing and I loved the way Delwyn has woven things together, bringing in adventure and some hot and sexy romance. Those scenes were well done, just the right balance of erotica and story.
Overall its a fun read, a great start to a new series and I look forward to more. I’d like to see more from Kam’s friends and Alex’s group of Knights. I want to see how Alex and Kam work out together, how the problem of the murderous kidnapper gets resolved, its pretty clear there’s more to come, and also what happens with the ruling group of witches ( forgotten the name for them, but the 12 ladies who run things) Its clear that they, or their predecessors have manipulated historical events to their needs, but that doesn’t mean they’re doing what’s best for anyone, and has led to the dangers exposed in this book. There’s a link left undone too, that I’m sure will crop up in later books, where the kidnapper has an “in” for information which could prove disastrous for everyone.
Stars: Four, a good beginning.
ARC supplied via Netgalley

 

The First Time We Met, The Oxford Blue Series 1, Pippa Croft.

 

The First Time We Met, The Oxford Blue Series 1, Pippa Croft.
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
I made a stupid mistake requesting The Second Time I saw You, ( review to come) as I thought it was a stand alone…however its a trilogy, and I was blown away by that part so had to get the first part just to see how it all started. I read a lot, 700-800 books a year, and contemporary romance is a genre I love but which carries a lot of bland, easy reading novels. That’s fine for many readers who want that but I need more, and this trilogy supplies all the drama, angst and emotion I need! In spades 🙂
Lauren is a great female lead, intelligent and confident, she’s come to UK to study for her Masters. Her family are high in the US political scene, and while she loves them dearly they can be over protective, so her year in the UK is a chance to find her own feet. She’s recently broken up with her boyfriend too – they’d been together some time but things weren’t right, and this gives her a fresh start with new people and lifestyle. She’s not looking for a new boyfriend but accidentally runs into Alexander – always Alexander, never Alex! He’s very strong minded, rules are for others and he breaks them at every point. A member of the English nobility he’s trying to escape his own past, not happy in the entrenched, traditional role set out for him in life. He’s carrying a lot of secrets – oh I love that, potential for so much drama!! He’s drawn to Lauren and she to him from their first meeting, even though it doesn’t go well. She knows from his reputation he’s the last person she needs to get involved with, and he really doesn’t need more entanglements in his complicated life, but somehow they can’t stay away. Alexander is master of the grand gesture, and not taking no for an answer, and soon they’re embroiled in a hot and heavy relationship. The sex is sizzling, sensual, steamy passion beautifully written and fits perfectly within the novel. I love erotic novels but need a good story backing it, and this one is just perfect.
Slowly though a few secrets creep out, there are some misunderstandings and some fierce jealousies on both sides. There’s the sleazy Professor Rafe who makes Lauren very uneasy and who warns her off Alexander, there’s Alexander’s father who’s very anti Lauren, Valentina from Alexander’s past – and present who’s just the perfect bitch, and clearly isn’t going away, and his cousin Rupert, who clearly doesn’t like Lauren and insinuates to her that she’s just not good enough for Alexander, that he needs someone born to the role, not an American who knows nothing about English country life and lifestyles. . I love those characters, people who are determined, and takes every opportunity to turn the screw and cause problems. There’s too few romances that do this well – this one has it spot on.
I’m really, really impatient for book three now, due out in autumn. I hate trilogies with long intervals between releases, the story loses momentum for me but this isn’t such a huge gap between parts, and its definitely one for my keeper files for re reading back to back – that’s the way I love to read the best romances.
Stars: a very well deserved five, nothing I can fault, just a fabulous emotion filled, dramatic read.
ARC supplied via Netgalley

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