Archive | December 15, 2014

Branded, Colette Auclair


Branded (The Aspen Valley Series)

Branded, Colette Auclair
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Genre: Romance, Contemporary.
I loved the first book in this series, but book two was let down for me by the female lead, Beth – I just didn’t take to her. We meet her again here, with husband Finn  and her new baby. I found maybe marriage has mellowed her as I liked her so much more! It was great too to catch up with the wonderful Amanda and Grady, and of course Harris and his cocktails….It was the drama in book one that was the icing for me on a great read – the five star part – when Grady was a first class prick – and led to such sadness from Amanda ( he redeemed himself though – and that’s just what I love in a book) Though I enjoyed this read it didn’t quite have that deep drama for me, so book one is still my favourite.
Cordy, I liked her, had the idea that maybe she was hiding the truth, but she’s so closed in nature its hard to see what she really feels. Jack on the other hand is so open he’s almost a heart on sleeve character. A real Southern gentleman, and I’m cross I can’t remember meeting him before – how could I have missed such a fabulous man? He seems to know just what Cordy needs, and when That scene, you will know when you read which part I mean – the one that’s so heart-breaking, hits he was just so perfect with what he did to help Cordy get through it. Its a great story, turned round from the usual where a couple meet and work there way up to sex, here Cordy and Jack meet and are very quickly flirting and more, and then after the magical weekend they need to get to know each other better…it was fun this way round, and lead to some steamy and sensual scenes. When the sh it hits the fan though it really does, and I was rooting for things to go right. I’d have liked just that bit more seeing how they were coping individually then, I need to see them sad, heartbroken, so I can wallow with them, but we seemed to get it via a retrospective glance back after some time had elapsed. It was a “good” sad, but but not quite up with Grady’s prick move!
Stars: Four, A great read, loved catching up with the progress of the others and seeing things like the rescue centre up and running. As a horse lover it played on my all things equine button, and gave me a reading fix that way too. Beth’s ethos mirrors mine, I hate cruelty, and the way horses get passed on all the while. Cordy did say she’d always taken pains to ensure the right homes for hers when they were sold which is good, but for me I knew once I had my horse( s) they’d be with me for life so choosing was a really careful thing.
ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers


Hellsbane Hereafter, (Hellsbane 3) , Paige Cuccaro


Hellsbane Hereafter (Entangled Select Otherworld)
Hellsbane Hereafter, (Hellsbane 3) , Paige Cuccaro
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Genre: Romance, Fantasy/Paranormal
The final book…and what a fun trilogy it’s been. Poor Emma Jane – it seems like she’s been used by both Heaven and Hell. Though she started off believing it was a simple good v evil battle, and knowing she was on the side of good, recent events have made her look differently at things. She’s lost so many friends to the battle and now she’s working for her father she’s made friends among his side too, and can’t bear losing any of them.
I’ve always found that the way the Nephilims were treated as strange – the Bible tells us they were evil, some were monsters etc and they all needed to be killed, and would go straight to the Abyss. Well, how that ties up with the God is Mercy and Suffer Little Children to come unto Me etc I’ve never understood. Children can’t help who their parents are, and it seems wrong that if the angels who fathered them simply gave up them and their mothers and repented they could return to Heaven, while they who’d done nothing except be born were punished and their mothers, who did nothing but fall in love – or were raped – were left literally holding the baby….Double standards and certainly not Merciful.
Archangel Michael here epitomises how I feel about these stories. so much for being Angelic, he and his brothers are judgemental, will torture and are horrifically cruel to get what they want, twist the truth to suit their needs, and want Emma Jane ( and others like her) to do their dirty work as they can’t possibly soil their own hands, and yet they call her and the others “it” and an abomination….Now she’s unable to return to human, as her father isn’t an ordinary angel, and has seen the supposed “good” side arrange some awful things she’s doubting herself. Her love for Eli though is true, and she’s feels so sad about his Falling, she knows he misses his brothers and they will have no contact with him. That’s what I mean about judgemental, he’s worked for them and for Heaven for centuries, and yet fall in love and all is over, he’s doomed, shunned by all his former angelic friends, except those that have also Fallen. Why did God make them capable of loving humans if he won’t allow it to continue? Jakar, her father wants her working for him, and Michael wants her spying on Jakar. Both sides make her promises, and all she really wants is for Eli to be able to return to the Grace she thinks he wants, to be able to be back with his lifelong friends. That’s true love when you’ll give up someone to ensure their ultimate happiness, and it was heart-breaking seeing her try to arrange it, knowing all the while Michael would find some way to weasel out – he and the others of the Seven really were two faced. They infuriated me in earlier books and this one they really are shown in their true colours..She’s keeping a lot of secrets and struggling, trying to work out what’s best to do, and then finds out that humans are being used in the latest theatrics from both sides. who can she believe? What can she do? Its clear do nothing isn’t an option and yet whichever way she turns people are going to get hurt.
I so feel for her, she’s been ( in my eyes) betrayed by her father, and by Heaven and the angels. All she’s ever done is try to do right, to help people, and yet its as if the two sides are just playing and care nothing about people dying, whether supernatural or human. Its a real struggle and I was as puzzled as Emma Jane much of the time. I kept thinking “what would I do” when she’s faced with some awful choices, has to decide who she can trust and how far, and what she can do to save people. When the final battle comes – that was so sad….I felt really tearful and gutted. That just couldn’t have happened could it? but yes it did…I was heartbroken along with her. Paige manages to pull off one final event though, and just when I was thinking how on earth could it end, as I couldn’t see how either group could win, without destroying humanity somehow she pulls off the perfect finale.
Stars: Five, loved it, was swept along with the story and characters and it’s a perfect ending.
ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers

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