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Apr
7

Review: Shady Lady

Review: Shady Lady Shady Lady Author: Ann Aguirre  Release Date: April 5, 2011 Publisher: Roc Corine Solomon Novels, Book #3  ISBN: #978-0451463258 Genre: Urban Fantasy Format(s): Paperback (336 pgs), e-book We received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: I’d spent my whole life settling, trying not to attract attention, and generally doing whatever it took to keep other people happy. I didn’t want to do that again. Not when I was finally comfortable in my own skin. Sure, there were certain challenges, like a drug lord who wanted me dead, and the fact that I owed a demon a debt that he could call due at any moment. But everybody’s got problems, right? Whenever Corine Solomon touches an object, she immediately knows its history. But her own future concerns her more and more. Now back in Mexico, she’s running her pawnshop and trying to get a handle on her strange new powers, for she might need them. And soon. Then former ally Kel Ferguson walks through her door. Heavily muscled and tattooed, Kel looks like a convict but calls himself a holy warrior. This time, he carries a warning for Corine: the Montoya cartel is coming for her—but they don’t just pack automatic weapons. The Montoyas use warlocks, shamans, voodoo priests—anything to terminate trouble. And Corine has become enemy number one… What Gikany & Una are talking about: First, we are back as a team on this book.  Yay!   Secondly, I, Una, read this book as a standalone, because Twimom asked me to review it.  However, because Gikany is just as obsessive/compulsive as me (and had the time and money) read the first two books in the Corine Solomon Novels before reading Shady Lady.  It made a huge difference!  We both strongly recommend that you read this book after reading the first two.  It seems, as poor Una found out, much from (especially the first book) previous books are referenced, implied, alluded to, etc.  Goodness, poor Una got very confused and frustrated during the first half of this book because of carried over plot lines and romantic entanglements. As Gikany filled in Una, there is quite a lot that takes place in Corine’s (for those, like Una, who didn’t the first book, her name rhymes with Doreen) life prior to the third book.  However to know any of it, you have to read the first two books.  So...
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Apr
6

Review: Lover Unleashed

Review: Lover Unleashed Lover Unleashed Author: JR Ward  Release Date: March 29, 2011 Publisher: NAL Hardcover Black Dagger Brotherhood series Book #9 ISBN: # 978-0451233165 Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): Hardcover (512 pgs), e-book   G & U purchased a copy of this book for the purposes of their own enjoyment. Twimom borrowed the book from her local library. From the author’s website:      Payne, twin sister of Vishous, is cut from the same dark, warrior cloth as her brother:  A fighter by nature, and a maverick when it comes to the traditional role of Chosen females, there is no place for her on the Far Side… and no role for her on the front lines of the war, either.        When she suffers a paralyzing injury, human surgeon Dr. Manuel Manello is called in to treat her as only he can- and he soon gets sucked into her dangerous, secret world.  Although he never before believed in things that go bump in the night- like vampires- he finds himself more than willing to be seduced by the powerful female who marks both his body and his soul.      As the two find so much more than an erotic connection, the human and vampire worlds collide … just as a centuries old score catches up with Payne and puts both her love and her life in deadly jeopardy. What Gikany & Una are talking about:      Gikany and Una were waiting with baited breath for this latest installment in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series.  The “WARDen” did not disappoint in Payne’s book, Lover Unleashed.      Gikany loved the introduction of Xcor (pronounced in her head as “Score”).  Unlike the introduction of Lash, the Omega, Mr. X, etc, as the antagonist, he appears, for lack of better term, human.  He is complicated and not just evil, being capable of change.  Xcor’s interactions with Payne highlighted his honor and his ability to hold to a set of moral beliefs.  However, Una still can’t believe his name is Xcor (pronounced in her head as “Core”) after it seems the WARDen received so much grief about her overuse of the word core in her previous novels.  Just like the controversy over the pronunciation of Xhex (as the WARDen says, “Hex” and the rest of us that thought “Sex” until an interview with her on the web cleared this up).      Una enjoyed the pace of the novel.  Unlike in John Matthew’s book...
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Apr
1

Review: Dark Enchantment

Review: Dark Enchantment Dark Enchantment Author: Anya Bast  Release Date: April 5, 2011 Publisher: Berkley Sensation Dark Magick Book #3 ISBN: #978-0425240533 Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): paperback (352 pgs), e-book I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: A sultry dream can become a real-life nightmare… Tax consultant Charlotte Bennett isn’t the type to lose control. Until she’s seduced in a dream by a handsome, rugged man named Kieran. In her dream state, she decides to let loose, letting pleasure and desire lead the way. But she quickly discovers her “safe” night of passion has dangerous repercussions. The lust-driven dream was in fact a magick illusion that’s left Charlotte indefinitely bound to a controlling fae named Kieran. Under his order, she must find the last piece of a powerful relic. Only Charlotte knows the location of the bosca fadbh, but the knowledge is hidden deep within her bloodline—and only wicked magick can draw it out. Forced to work with the enticing Kieran, she finds it hard to escape their seductive chemistry. Even though he’s harboring a deadly curse, one that puts Charlotte in danger—and could make this attraction fatal…. What I’m talking about: Welcome to a world of magic… Ms. Bast’s wonderful Dark Magick series takes place in an alternate world where humans have discovered Fae (fairies, goblins, etc.) and have incarcerated them with the help of the Druid-based Phaendir. In the first 2 books, plus “pre-quel” novella), the Fae have been working to find pieces of the bosca fadhb, a fae relic that will help the imprisoned fae escape the walls of Piefferburg. Dark Enchantment picks up shortly after the conclusion of the previous book and immediately jumps into a sexy adventure.  Charlotte, a human with a Fae-Hating family reputation, wakes one morning after an intense, highly sexual dream and keeps hearing the voice of her dream-lover calling for her. Soon the calls become a compulsion that drives her to enter the gates of Piefferburg under false pretenses. She is scared but angry that one fae could make her do something she never wanted to do in her lifetime. After meeting the man (fae) from her dreams, Kieran, and other magical folks, Charlotte agrees to help the fae by allowing them access to her genetic memories. Soon she is thrown into a dangerous fight for freedom for a race of beings she once considered a threat to her...
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Mar
28

ARC Review: Eternal Rider

ARC Review: Eternal Rider Eternal Rider Author: Larissa Ione  Release Date: March 29, 2011 Publisher: Grand Central Publishing Lords of Deliverance Book #1 ISBN: #978-0446574495 Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): paperback (432 pgs), e-book I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website:       They are here. They ride. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.       His name is Ares, and the fate of mankind rests on his powerful shoulders. If he falls to the forces of evil, the world falls too. As one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, he is far stronger than any mortal, but even he cannot fight his destiny forever. Not when his own brother plots against him.       Yet there is one last hope. Gifted in a way other humans can’t-or won’t-understand, Cara Thornhart is the key to both this Horseman’s safety and his doom. But involving Cara will prove treacherous, even beyond the maddening, dangerous desire that seizes them the moment they meet. For staving off eternal darkness could have a staggering cost: Cara’s life. What I’m talking about:       Although new, the Lords of Deliverance series is set in Ms. Ione’s amazing DEMONICA world.  Many of the characters and locations from her previous series are present and active participants of this new book. The mythology and rules follow suit.  It’s a great continuation for fans of the Demonica series, but it’s also a wonderful place to “jump in” if you are new to Ms. Ione’s work.       The series centers around the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, but this isn’t your run-of-the-mill retelling.  Ms. Ione creates here own version of these biblical characters, two of which made an appearance in Larissa’s fifth Demonica Series book, Sin Undone. In fact, this book takes place shortly after the conclusion of Sin Undone.        Eternal Rider features the second horseman, Ares aka “War.” He is over 5,000 years old and has been living a fairly quite existence along side his sister and brothers after being cursed to carry the Seals of Armageddon. In Sin Undone, the Seal of the first horseman, Pestilence, broke, turing Ares’ fun-loving brother into a pure evil demon hell-bent on breaking the Seals of his siblings, therefore bringing about the end of days.  Each horseman has an “Achilles heel” that can cause his/her Seal to break. For Ares, it happens...
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Mar
22

ARC Review: Magic on the Hunt

ARC Review: Magic on the Hunt Magic on the Hunt Author: Devon Monk  Release Date: April 5, 2011 Publisher: Roc Allie Beckstrom Series #6  ISBN: #978-0451463913 Genre: Urban Fantasy Format(s): Paperback (368 pgs), e-book I received a ARC copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website:       There aren’t many girls who can say they’ve gone into the realm of death and lived to tell the tale. But to restore her lover Zayvion’s soul, Allison Beckstrom had to pay a bitter price–and things are about to get worse….       It turns out the leader of the Authority, the council that decides what can–and can’t–be done with magic, is being held hostage. But when the trail leads Allie and Zayvion to the secret prison where the Authority locks away magical criminals who are too dangerous to be held anywhere else, they find more than they bargained for. An undead magic user has possessed one of the prisoners, and he wants his freedom–and then some. Now Allie and Zayvion are the first line of defense against the chaos he’s about to unleash on the city of Portland…. What Una is talking about:       Sadly, I am writing this review on my own.  Poor Gikany is ONLY on book 2 and will not, hmmm, corrupt herself by skipping ahead to read this one.  So it is my pleasure to read and review this book for all of you (and Gikany) because she has already been sucked into this refreshing series and it’s driving her nuts that I know what’s happening….*grins evilly* ***Please note that if you haven’t read the whole series, there may be spoilers in the following review.  You have been WARNED!       After finishing book 5, Magic at the Gate, I was eagerly anticipating the arrival of this book.  Ms. Monk does not disappoint with this fascinating urban fantasy.  We pick up a few days after the previous book ends.  It seems that Zay and Allie have had a much deserved break and rest.  However, that break is short lived once Dane enters her home, knocks out Zay and shoots Allie.  He does this to force her father, whose soul still stubbornly resides in her body, to reveal where Sedra is being held by Jingo Jingo.       Magic on the Hunt has an explosive beginning and a faster pace than the previous novels.  I was completely...
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Mar
21

Review: No Rest for the Wicked

Review: No Rest for the Wicked No Rest for the Wicked Author: Kresley Cole  Release Date: October 2006 Publisher: Pocket Star Immortals After Dark #3 ISBN: #978-1416509887 Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): paperback (384 pgs), e-book From the author’s website: A vampire soldier weary of life… Centuries ago, Sebastian Wroth was turned into a vampire—a nightmare in his mind—against his will. Burdened with hatred and alone for ages, he sees little reason to live. Until an exquisite, fey creature comes to kill him, inadvertently saving him instead. A Valkyrie assassin dispatched to destroy him… When Kaderin the Cold Hearted lost her two beloved sisters to a vampire attack long ago, a benevolent force deadened her sorrow—accidentally extinguishing all of her emotions. Yet whenever she encounters Sebastian, her feelings—particularly lust—emerge multiplied. For the first time, she’s unable to complete a kill. Become competitors in a legendary hunt… The prize of the month-long contest is powerful enough to change history, and Kaderin will do anything to win it for her sisters. Wanting only to win her, forever, Sebastian competes as well, taking every opportunity–as they travel to ancient tombs and through catacombs, seeking relics around the world–to use her new feelings to seduce her. But when forced to choose between the vampire she’s falling for and reuniting her family, how can Kaderin live without either? What I’m talking about: Picking up just after the end of the previous book, A Hunger Like No Other, this story opens with Valkyrie Kaderin the Cold-Hearted hesitating to kill a vampire. Something that she hasn’t done in over a thousand years. But as she looks into the eyes of the once-human-turned-vampire, Sebastian Wroth, she sees something more than vampire.  Within minutes, Sebastian’s heart is beating and both realize that Kaderin is Sebastian’s destined Bride.  Desire overtakes Kaderin – the first feelings she has experienced since the death of her sisters a millennia ago. Ashamed by her lustful indiscretion with Sebastian, Kaderin quickly leaves and heads for her London flat to prepare for the Talisman’s Hie, a “deadly, immortal version of The Amazing Race.” Kaderin is reigning champ 5-times running.  Upon arriving at the games, she is shocked to see Sebastian.  He also enters the competition with hopes of wooing Kaderin.  The two begin a love-hate relationship, working their way through the challenges of the Hie. The third installment of the IAD Series is an action-filled roller coaster ride! With the setting of a deadly immortal adventure game, this story has a quick...
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Mar
16

Review & Giveaway: It Happened One Bite

Review & Giveaway: It Happened One Bite It Happened One Bite Author: Lydia Dare   Release Date: March 1, 2011 Publisher: Sourcebooks Regency Vampyre Trilogy #1 ISBN: #978-1402245077 Genre: Recency Paranormal Romance Format(s): paperback (416 pgs), e-book I received an ARC copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: He’s lost, trapped, doomed for all eternity…  Rich, titled, and undead, gentleman vampyre James Maitland, Lord Kettering, fears himself doomed to a cold and lonely existence-trapped for decades in an abandoned castle. Then, beautiful Scottish witch Blaire Lindsay arrives, and things begin to heat up considerably… Unless he can persuade her to set him free… Feisty Blaire Lindsay laughs off the local gossip surrounding her mother’s ancestral home-stories of haunting cannot scare off this battle-born witch. But when she discovers the handsome prisoner in the bowels of the castle, Blaire has no idea that she has unleashed anything more than a man who sets her heart on fire… What I’m talking about: Although It Happened One Bite is the first book in this new series, it picks up the story line first started in Ms. Dare’s Westfield (Lycan) Brothers series.  The story overlaps a bit with the 4th book of that series, The Taming of the Wolf (review HERE), and centers on five (unrelated) sister-witches of the Coig with a few other returning characters from the prior series. This book focuses on the warrior witch, Blaire.  Last we saw, she and her brothers were off inspecting an inherited estate, when sister-witch and seer, Cait, predicts danger for Blaire. In It Happened One Bite, Blair and her brothers begin the story by heading to the Highlands to Briarcraig Castle. Shortly after arriving at the abandoned estate, the trio of siblings discover a mysterious gentleman that has been locked away for an unknown amount of time. Blaire quickly surmises that the stranger, Lord Kettering, has been trapped a lot longer than a human could survive. She also realizes that her mother and fellow witches were responsible for his imprisonment. As both Blaire and Kettering attempt to uncover the truth, they find themselves falling for one another. I have to say that I really enjoyed It Happened One Bite.  The story had a bit of action, a lovely Regency romance and sexy gentlemen vampyres. Blaire is a powerful woman who holds her ground. She is strong-willed and sharp tongued. She doesn’t mince words and is an open book for the most part. I find...
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Mar
3

Review: Merely Magic

Review: Merely Magic Merely Magic Author: Patricia Rice Release Date: re-release March 1, 2011 Publisher: Sourcebooks/Casablanca Magic Series Book 1 ISBN: #978-1402251931 Genre: Historical Romance Format(s): paperback (352 pgs), e-book  I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the back cover: She has the magic as her birthright… Ninian is a healer, but she’s a Malcolm first and foremost, and Malcolms have always had a bit of magic-unpredictable though it is-to aid them in their pursuits. She knows she must accept what she is or perish, but then Lord Drogo Ives arrives, brining the deepest, most powerful magic she’s ever experienced and turning Ninian’s world upside down… A man of science doesn’t believe in anything he can’t see…. Drogo Ives has no time for foolish musings or legends, even if he can’t seem to resist the local witch. Thrown together by a series of disastrous events, Ninian won’t give herself fully to Drogo until she can make him trust and believe in her, and that’s the last thing he’ll ever do… As the danger and chaos surrounding them escalates, Drogo and Ninian will be forced to decide: their love or their lives… What I’m talking about: Ninian is an outsider in her small village. Although she grew up among the villagers and counts some as friends, the legend of the Malcolm witches keep the superstitious denizens at a cautious distance.  On the night of the Beltane, Ninian watches the villagers from a far before moving on to collect some herbs. On her walk she discovers that Lord Drogo, the Earl of Ives, has moved into the Wystan castle – the first Ives to live there in generations. She is instantly taken with the dark stranger, and he is held captive by Ninian’s charm.  Soon a series of events ties the two together.  Although Ninian and Drogo fight instant attraction, his meddling step-sister brews an aphrodisiac that lands the two in bed early on in the story. Neither is willing to change his/her life nor do either want marriage. Yet when Drogo discovers Ninian is pregnant, a hope for the heir he’s never had emerges and he insists on a wedding.   I throughly enjoyed this love story. Ninian and Drogo are both stubborn yet not so obstinate that they are willing to give their relationship a chance, even with all of their differences. They undergo a “one-step forward, two-steps back” type of...
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Mar
2

Review: Taste Me

Review: Taste Me Taste Me Author: Tamara Hogan Release Date: March 1, 2011 Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc. Underbelly Chronicles, Book 1 ISBN: #978-1402246012 Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance Format(s): Paperback (384 pgs) I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: He wants her so badly he can taste it… Ever since their tempestuous fling years ago, incubus Lukas Sebastiani has known that siren Scarlett Fontaine was meant to be his. But when you’re a sex demon with an insatiable desire, relationships are…complicated. Her siren song brings men to their knees… Rock star Scarlett Fontaine desperately needs a break after a grueling tour. But with murder and mayhem surrounding her band, and Lukas guarding her body, life is going to be anything but peaceful.  Every encounter between them creates more turmoil—and heat—until Scarlett pushes Lukas to the boiling point, and unleashes forces that go way beyond anything she can hope to control…  What B is talking about: Lukas Sebastiani has more to contend with than your average incubus: he’s on the trail of a killer, has a genetic quirk that enhances his incubus abilities far beyond anything “normal,” even for an incubus, and he has just been tasked with guarding the one woman he’s never been able to forget. Too bad he’s convinced she’d be better off without him.  Scarlett Fontaine is a Siren on the run from memories of the man who broke her heart and the lost love she’d given up on over a year ago. But a string of murders brings Lukas is back into her life, and this time she won’t let him go without a fight. I’m very excited to be able to read the first novel in Hogan’s new Underbelly Chronicles series. Hogan has created a wonderful heroine in Scarlett who, even when she’s most uncertain, remains clever and determined. She realizes that, in order to win Lukas’s love, she’ll have to strip away his control, make him meet her passion with his own, and teach him to accept not only the love she’s offering, but the worth of the love he himself has to give.  Lukas carries quite a few alpha male characteristics, such as the need to be in control, a healthy dose of “hapless male syndrome,” and worst of all, the tendency to assume that his point of view is the divine lens of absolute truth. Owing to Hogan’s capable storytelling, however,...
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Mar
1

Review: River Marked

Review: River Marked River Marked Author: Patricia Briggs Release Date: March 1, 2011 Publisher: Ace Books Mercy Thompson Series #6 ISBN: #978-0441019731 Genre: Urban Fantasy Format(s): Hardcover (336 pgs), e-book I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the book dust jacket:      Welcome to Patricia Brigg’s world, a place where “witches, vampires, werewolves, and shapeshifters live beside ordinary people” (Booklist).  It takes a very unusual woman to call it home – and there’s no one quite like Mercy.      Coyote Shifter Mercy Thompson knows that life with her mate, the Alpha werewolf Adam, will never be boring, but even their wedding doesn’t go as planned.  Nevertheless, a ten-day honeymoon camping on the banks of the Columbia River, alone, just the two of them, should make up for it.  But the trip – and the pimped-out trailer they’re using – is courtesy of the fae.  And nothing from the fae comes without strings attached….      Being a different breed of shapeshifter – a walker – Mercy can see ghosts, but the spirit of her long-gone father has never visited her.  Until now.  An evil is stirring in the depths of the Columbia River – and innocent people are dying.  As other walkers make their presence known to Mercy, she must reconnect with her heritage to exorcise the world of the legend known as the river devil… What Gikany & Una are talking about:      The wait is over, at least for us, River Marked is here!  Would it be wrong to say that the rest of you poor people had to wait until the March 1?  Oh, wait, today is the first of March…well, what are you waiting for? GO GET IT!  This highly anticipated sixth novel in the Mercy Thompson series was well worth waiting for.      **Please note, if you haven’t read the series, this review will spoil some plot points in the earlier books so please; Go buy and read the first five books (or check them out from your local library) and then come back, read this review and then go get this book.  We are happy to help you out!      The first part of the novel is classic Mercy Thompson.  It has all of the elements of humor and wit that we have come to associate with Patricia Briggs’ writing.  We’ll just come out and say it: Mercy and Adam...
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