Archive | October, 2012
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It’s Halloween!

31 Oct

Coming Soon: Shattered Souls by Delilah Devlin

29 Oct

Private Investigator Caitlyn O’Connell lost it all—her plum job as a detective for the Memphis PD, her partner and lover, and her own self-respect —to booze in an attempt to drown out the voices in her head. When her ex-partner drags her to a murder scene where she’s his only real lead, she knows it’s time to face her greatest fears and harness the inherited gifts she’s always rejected. That she’ll have a chance to prove she had damn good reasons for shutting Sam out of her life is just icing on the cake.

The last thing Sam Pierce wants is to revisit his painful relationship with Cait, but she’s the only lead he has. Sam doggedly follows Cait into a dark world filled with magick and unholy terrors as they search for killer wraiths and the demon who commands them.– Release date: Jan. 29, 2013

Review: Now You See It by Cait Donnelly

27 Oct


3.5 out of 5 scoopers

Now You See It by Cait Donnelly
Carina Press (Nov. 5, 2012)
ebook: $5.99 (85,000 words)
ISBN: 9781426894589
Excerpt

Favorite Lines: “Great. Just great. He finally meets the One, and–God, did he just think that? Even to himself? Brady sat back in the chair and blinked, caught his breath and rethought the last few seconds. Well, damn! It had happened, just the way his aunts had always said it would. Just the way it had hit his dad. With amused and knowing grins, the old women had called it the coup de foudre–the thunderbolt. He’d shrugged it off as just more Indian stories. Served him right.” (p. 20, e-galley)

Former Navy SEAL Brady McGrath has no trouble attracting female attention. But women never stick around long once they learn he can read feelings through touch. When an old Navy buddy hires him to protect his sister, he doesn’t need extra-sensory abilities to know someone wants something from Gemma Cavanagh —something worth killing for.

Gemma’s finally getting a handle on her own unique ability to make things disappear—even making them reappear on occasion. When someone breaks into her house and hacks into her computer, she’s certain her soon-to-be-ex husband is to blame—until the police show up on her doorstep with the news he’s been murdered. And she’s their number one suspect.

After barely escaping a firebombing, Gemma and Brady are forced into hiding—and forced to confront the chemistry between them. As they desperately search for the killer, can Brady help Gemma harness her abilities—and keep her from finding out about his own dark past?

Now You See It is book one in Cait Donnelly’s Inner Edge series which introduces characters who have “abilities” into a contemporary world. Gemma, the heroine, can file things. This means she knowingly–or unknowingly–makes items disappear. As a youth she could make those items reappear at will, but after a traumatic event she lost the ability to control her filing ability. The hero Brady can read emotions transferred to objects, as well as from people. He is a tough guy. He has mad computer skills and federal law enforcement training.

But Now You See It is not so much a paranormal romance as much as a contemporary romantic suspense with paranormal aspects. The drama surrounds a woman in the midst of a divorce whose husband is brutally murdered. Soon after, her home is invaded and her brother sends his buddy over to investigate. That woman becomes prime suspect and happens to have an unusual ability. Not many people in the book have odd abilities and the action isn’t driven by the abilities which is why I consider this more of a suspense. Everyone wants to know “who did it?”.  And the answer has nothing to do with the special abilities of any of its characters.

As a whole, I enjoyed the book. I understand the hero’s quick addiction to the heroine, but her feelings were more of a mystery to me. I guess Gemma burned out on her hubby a long time before the hero made an appearance so I’m okay with her quick interest in the hero. Her emotional flip-flops between irritation, attraction, and anger all of which are directed toward the hero about drove me crazy. I didn’t like Gemma and feeding my dislike were her perplexing reactions to other things. For example, there was a moment when Gemma knew she was a suspect in her husband’s murder when she returned home, I’m talking the day after finding out about her hubby’s death, that she reacted in a way which made no sense to me. She pulls up to a yard full of reporters and “opening the garage door at the last possible minute, she flipped the crowd a happy little wave as she pulled inside.” (p.56) It cemented my early opinion of her character as one with little depth.

Gemma’s brother and would-be lover are another matter. I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of both men. They were dependable and predictable–great romance heroes. Someone else was predictable…the villain. I knew upon introduction to the villain exactly who he was. I didn’t know why he did the things he did, but it was clear to me that he was a participant.

So my end thought on Now You See It are that it was pretty much what I expected to find in a romantic suspense with the exception of a heroine who I disliked. I never set the book aside which makes it a solid read for me, but it isn’t one I’ll read again. I did like it enough that I’ll be looking for book two which is entitled Helix.

Books I Want: November 2012

26 Oct

Provoked by Rebecca Zanetti (Nov. 1, received copy from Netgalley)

A TIME FOR WAR…
A casualty of the war between the demons and the vampires, Jase Kayrs has been missing for six long years. His older brothers want answers—but they’re going to have to get them from an unlikely source. For when Kane Kayrs tracks down Amber Freebird, what he finds is a blonde, vegan pacifist who has no intention of using her skills in his war…

A TIME FOR LOVE…

Amber enjoys her life of chaotic freedom and has no intention of falling in line just because a sexy-as-sin vampire insists on order. Unfortunately, he discovers she may be the only hope they have of finding his brother, and there’s no way he’s going to let her go—even if it means mating her to gain her cooperation. The two are as different as can be, yet when the dominant Kane and the untamed Amber finally unite to rescue Jase, they just may find that opposites really do attract… Continue reading

Review: Provoked by Rebecca Zanetti

25 Oct

3 of 5 scoopers

Provoked by Rebecca Zanetti
Kensington (Nov. 1, 2012)
ebook: $6.99
ISBN: 9781601830203
Excerpt

Favorite Lines: “Amber, I like you. Against all rational thought, I like the way you think, the way you move, even the way you feel everything too strongly. And I want to have one night with you–not to relieve some stress, although it would–not to cement your help, although it might–and not to further any of my rather pressing goals. I just want to get inside you  and drive you crazy until you scream my name.” (p. 114, e-galley)

A TIME FOR WAR . . .

A casualty of the war between the demons and the vampires, Jase Kayrs has been missing for six long years. His older brothers want answers-but they’re going to have to get them from an unlikely source. For when Kane Kayrs tracks down Amber Freebird, what he finds is a blonde, vegan pacifist who has no intention of using her skills in his war . . .

A TIME FOR LOVE . . .

Amber enjoys her life of chaotic freedom and has no intention of falling in line just because a sexy-as-sin vampire insists on order. Unfortunately, he discovers she may be the only hope they have of finding his brother, and there’s no way he’s going to let her go-even if it means mating her to gain her cooperation. The two are as different as can be, yet when the dominant Kane and the untamed Amber finally unite to rescue Jase, they just may find that opposites really do attract . . .

Provoked is book five in Rebecca Zanetti’s Protector series. (Tempted is 2.5 in the series.) I read books two and three, but skipped four as it didn’t sound interesting to me. Unfortunately skipping the book may have hindered my understanding and appreciation for Provoked.

Provoked brings back characters introduced throughout the series. There’s a look at the now 14-year-old son of Cara and Talen, a check-in with Dage and Emma and a look at what’s been happening to the missing Kayr brother Jase for the past five years. Provoked can be sweet and has plenty of action, but my favorite moments revolve around Janie/Zane/Kalin and the Jase situation. I’m excitedly waiting for both of those books.

While I didn’t hate Provoked, I’ve gotta tell you that Amber is not my favorite heroine in the series. She kept thinking about how uneducated and poor she was compared to everyone around her. The first few times I was okay with it but when it occurred over and over I wanted to smack her.

Kane was alright. I liked reading about the level-headed Kayr brother. He was sexy, intelligent and exactly the man for the self-depreciating Amber. I will admit that Amber made huge strides in her emotional health by the end of the story I was I was no longer annoyed by her. Since I wasn’t in love with the main characters you’re probably wondering what made me stick with the book. The secondary characters. They hooked me.

I’m glad I read Provoked. I didn’t love it. I didn’t hate it. I did get a look at two books I want to read. I hope they come out soon. *Hint Hint*

Review: The Warrior by Margaret Mallory

24 Oct

4 out of 5 scoopers

The Warrior by Margaret Mallory
Grand Central Publishing (Oct. 30, 2012)
Mass market: $7.99; ebook: $7.99
ISBN: 9780446583091

Favorite Lines: “Moira lied instinctively to protect her son, but she did not regret it. Duncan did not deserve the truth. After living with Sean, Ragnall was hungry for a man he could look up to. He would take to this big man who had a quiet strength and the fighting skills of the warrior of legend. She would never give Duncan the power to disappoint Ragnall as he had her.” (p. 81, e-galley)

From the Isle of Skye to the battlefields of France, Duncan MacDonald has never escaped the memory of the true love he left behind. Deemed unworthy of a chieftain’s daughter, Duncan abandoned the lovely Moira to prove his worth in battle. Now, when called upon to rescue her from a rival clan, one thing is certain: Moira’s pull on his heart is stronger than ever.

Bartered away in marriage to a violent man, Moira will do anything to ensure she and her son survive. When a rugged warrior arrives to save her, the desperate beauty thinks her prayers have been answered-until she realizes it’s Duncan. The man who once broke her heart is now her only hope. Moira vows never again to give herself-or reveal her secrets-to the fierce warrior, but as they race across the sea, danger and desire draw them ever closer.

Combine Scottish highlanders and the high seas and you’ve got the men who make up Margaret Mallory‘s Return of the Highlanders series. The Warrior is book three out of the four which make up the series. I’ve read every book so far and each can be read as a stand alone. So far I’ve found each book to give just enough information about the next book’s hero to entice me to read it.

The Warrior follows the Chieftain Connor’s best friend Duncan as he finds love with Connor’s sister, Moira. The two were lovers before Moira’s father split them up and their reunion will reignite the passion of the past. As the former lovers learn to trust one another and discover the truth about their separation, outside forces threaten to ruin their entire clan.

Duncan is a steadfast man who would never betray his friends and family, so it really bothered me that the woman he loved didn’t see those characteristics in him. Moira lusted after him, but didn’t trust him enough to tell him her secret. When given the opportunity she lied. It made me think less of her. Everyone remembered her as a spoiled little princess and she lived up to that label by being self-absorbed. Had she removed the blinders from her own face and chosen to believe in Duncan’s trustworthiness I would have rooted for her happiness. As it was, I wanted Duncan happy and since he wanted her…I accepted it.

Family is a running theme in the book. There are the relationships between parents and children, siblings and lovers being explored. Some were doomed before they began. Others are just beginning. All have an impact on building the different people introduced in the story.

Unlike The Sinner, most of the moments that stick with me from The Warrior take place on land. Like when Moira and Duncan physically reunite, when Duncan figures out Moira’s big secret and when Moira sees her family again, all of it is on land. Don’t get me wrong. There was a lot of movement during the story which is when water and boats came into play. From Scotland to Ireland to different locations around Scotland, The Warrior traveled with the characters all over the place. It helped keep the story moving by showing what was taking place in multiple locations and by physically moving the characters to the beat of the plot.

Despite being rather predictable, The Warrior was a nice historical romance. I didn’t love it, but it was above average. I’ll be reading the concluding book, The Chieftain, when it is released in February 2013.

Review: Enslaved by Elisabeth Naughton

23 Oct


4 out of 5 scoopers

Enslaved by Elisabeth Naughton
Sourcebooks (Nov. 6, 2012)
Mass market: $7.99; ebook: $7.99
ISBN: 9781402262159
Excerpt

Favorite Lines: “All her life she’d been alone. Even the few times she’d been in love, she’d still been alone, because she’d never opened herself all the way. She’d never admitted who she really was, never confessed her hopes and dreams, never shared her soul. This time, she would. This time, everything was different.” (p. 296, e-galley)

After being rescued from the Underworld, Gryphon is plauged by strange voices and an evil foreboding. He believes that his only hope for salvation is to track down the goddess who cursed him…until he meets Maelea.

A prisoner with no bars, Maelea encounters Gryphon on her quest to find Olympus. He’s about to test her loyalty to the gods, and she’s ready to find out if he still has a heart worth saving…

It’s hard to believe that Enslaved is book five in Elisabeth Naughton‘s Eternal Guardians series. I’m not a fan of Greek mythology, but I’ve really become addicted to this series which incorporates bits and pieces of the past with its modern word. I highly recommend starting this series with book one instead of jumping in with Enslaved. Every book is about a different couple, but we’re given information and introduced to a variety of characters prior to starting their story. For example, we read about Gryphon’s experience in Hades and learn all about Maelea’s existence in book four, Enraptured.

After reading all the damage done to Gryphon in Enraptured and learning of Maelea’s predicament I couldn’t wait to get my hands on Enslaved. I knew a story about two horrendously damaged people would be good reading and I was right. The emotional trauma paired with the feelings of loneliness made them a perfect match once they realized the attraction between them. Maelea has always been alone not out of a desire but because she was cursed by the gods. Her father, Zeus, didn’t acknowledge her and her mother, Persephone, didn’t have much to do with her either.

Her constant migration and inability to let others get close to her made me want more for her. Just imagine how she felt living forever with no family and no constant partner or friends. Then BAM! there’s Gryphon who was tortured and is now infected with the voice of a villainess. He is purposely separating himself from his friends and family. Sure it’s out of a need to protect them from him, but he feels dirty and dangerous. He used to be completely different. His transformation from light to dark is affecting everyone–but Maelea.

As the two find peace in the world and within themselves there are so many other things taking place. The villainess from book one is still around. Atalanta still wants the Orb of Kronos and is using Gryphon to get it. The gods are making a play for the Orb, as well. They are trying to get it through Maelea. One of the story lines that began in book one will finally be concluded in this book.

Enslaved is equal parts romance/relationship and action moving the book/series forward. It’s also a nice change from the average vampire or shifter paranormal romance. It’s a decent addition to a comfortable series that is on my auto buy list.