Archive | May 14, 2015

Stripped with the Vampire, Jax Garren


Stripped with the Vampire, Jax Garren
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Genre:  Romance, LBQTIA
I thought this sounded a fun read, and is was. It’s first in a new series, something that’s tough for a book. It needs to introduce characters and places, while delivering an interesting storyline and SwtV does all that. Why isn’t it five star from me then?
Well, though its got great potential I felt some of the actions bordered on overkill, and there were lots of characters and types to get used to. The Teen Queen reminded me of Jane from the Twilight series and the evil vamp with magic in one of the early Laurell K Hamilton Anita Blake books. In the same way the sheer numbers of cultures and types of characters were also reminiscent of the LKH books, though thankfully Jax hasn’t gone the sex with everything and anyone of those stories that so spoiled the later ones! There are those with Viking heritage here, Aztec Gods, and were-rats and jaguars as well as two different types of vampires, some with and some without magic, and of course a couple of witches….it makes for an interesting mix but did mean that at times I felt the plot became overly convoluted, and yet at others the solutions to what had been created were too simplistic. I had visions of Rhiannon holding a teacup full of some potion and flicking the hundreds of vampires with something like a pastry brush….after all the dangers and drama that seemed just plain wrong….
The characters were a mix. Vince is exuberant, flamboyant and exhibitionist, and the sort of character I don’t usually like but his enthusiasm, loyalty, the way he’d put himself in danger when he thought it was needed, and of course his love for Charlie made him a person I really enjoyed and wanted to be happy.  Charlie – well he irritated me a lot of the time. I could see why he’d drawn back – didn’t agree and thought he was OTT but that’s the way it went, but then even when he learns more he’s still judgemental and couldn’t seem to see Vince POV. His timidity too annoyed me, the way he let others be outright rude to him, but I guess being Gay back when it was risking your life leaves one with that outlook and fear.He did get stronger towards the end though, and I began to see more qualities in him that attracted Vince.  Emma – the constant baby bat reference and her endless inanities were irritating – maybe she’s got some saving grace somewhere but I didn’t see it  Cash was a real star, enthusiastic, loyal, ready to give his life for his Queen and his friends, and yet as Rhiannon says  he’s not got a lot up top… He really is a point and shoot missile and that made me smile.
Its a fun read, I wasn’t sure at first but slowly I got hooked into the story and pulled into the drama. I felt some of the battles were drawn out and complex compared to the solutions – its that pastry brush image again – but overall its a fun read and opens up a world that I feel could be a five star series.
Stars: Four, a fun read and a great start to the series.
ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers

Forever Grace, Linda Poitevin


Forever Grace, Linda Poitevin
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Genre: Romance,
I loved the first book in this series, and this one features Gareth’s cousin Sean. ( There are cameo appearances by Gareth, Gwyn and the kids) It’s not a book full of hot, steamy sex, but a romance that builds slowly, where the couple learn about each other, and the circumstances throw them together, letting them see sides of each other than may otherwise have been hidden.
Sean is recovering from some severe injuries caused by an incident at work – he’s a cop. He’s come to film star Gareth’s secret hideout, an isolated cottage far away from crowds. Grace is looking after her three nieces and her nephew in the cottage next door, under the impression no-one else will be around. Once they meet it’s soon clear to Sean that the story she gives out about the little family doesn’t add up. As a cop his curiosity is piqued, and he wants to know more – why are they there, where are the parents, why aren’t the older three at school?
Its a lovely read, with some great humour, Grace’s cooking and the kids advice to Sean to bin it…. I loved Grace. She’s upturned her whole life to look after the kids, and I needed to know – like Sean – just what they were escaping from. When I found out it was heart-breaking, and the kids actions made so much sense. they were great characters too – acted exactly as I’d imagine kids in their position would. Josh, ten going on fifty at times, I wanted to hug him. He’s seen things no kid of his age should, and was so protective of his sisters and helpful to Grace. The girls too each had their own personality and were wise beyond their years, apart from baby Annabelle, who was so young she missed most of the fear. I loved the “stuffies owie” episode!! Toddlers – when they get an idea often they just won’t be moved, and again I could envisage that scene so well.
Its a really sad situation – fictional of course, but incredibly well portrayed, and sadly is real life for far too many families. Grace and Sean were two people that under normal circumstances would be unlikely to ever meet, and yet they were perfect for each other. There’s a beautiful romance developing but its only part of the story, its not a sex all the way book, but one that covers serious issues and had a solid suspense mystery behind it, and is balanced from the serious side by some wonderful humour .

Stars: Five, a beautiful read.
ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers

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