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Currently Browsing: Rating B
Apr
4

Review: Demons Are a Girl’s Best Friend

Review: Demons Are a Girl’s Best Friend Demons Are a Girl’s Best Friend Author: Linda Wisdom  Release Date: April 1, 2011 Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca ISBN: #978-1402254390 Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): Paperback (384 pgs), ebook I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: A bewitching woman on a mission… Feisty witch Maggie enjoys her work as a paranormal law enforcement officer-that is, until she’s assigned to protect a teenager with major attitude and plenty of Mayan enemies. Maggie’s never going to survive this assignment without the help of a half-fire demon who makes her smolder…  A hotter-than-sin hero with an agenda… Declan is proprietor of an underground club and busy demon portal. No way he’ll allow his demon race to be blamed for the malicious acts of some crazy evil Mayans. But he’s already got his hands full when the sexy witch offers him a challenge he can’t refuse… What B is talking about: Maggie O’Malley is a witch who’s used to being in charge. She’s over 700-years-old. She leads a Special Ops team for the Hellion Guard. She’s battle tested and as tough as they come. Got a nasty creature in need of dispatching? Maggie’s your witch. She’s seen it all. Been there, done that, and bring it on. Until she’s ordered to be the guardian of a teenaged girl and meets a sexy half-demon who’s more than he seems. Declan has worked hard to become boss at Damnation Alley. As a half-breed, he is unlike the rest of his kind in more ways than one. Still, he thinks he’s got everything under control until a witch with attitude to spare turns everything upside down. And of course, she would be the one he is destined for. This was a fun book to read. Maggie is tough, stubborn, powerful, and quite prickly. She doesn’t back down and rarely apologizes. Although she’s closer to 1,000 years old, she often acts like a young woman in her twenties. And she has no room in her life for a long-term relationship. Nor does she have the temperament to tolerate one. It all makes for an interesting character.  Once Declan enters her life, that all changes. Wisdom doesn’t waste a lot of time making Maggie fight her feelings for him. Rather, Maggie recognizes what she could have with him and makes the choice to wrap herself up in it, without a grand epiphany or lot of self-doubt....
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Mar
25

Review: Edge of Moonlight

Review: Edge of Moonlight Edge of Moonlight Author: Stephanie Julian Release Date: May, 2010 Publisher: Ellora’s Cave Publishing Lucani Lovers Series Book 3 ISBN: #978-1419927911 Genre: Paranormal Romance, Erotica Format(s): Ebook I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website:      Etruscan wolf shifter Kaine Giliati has longed for John Simmons since he willingly agreed to wipe all memory of her from his mind. The pain in her heart is only magnified by terror—the ability to call her wolf appears to have deserted her, as well.      For months after he and his sister escaped a crazed kidnapper, John has been dreaming about a beautiful woman he’s never met but who seems so familiar. A woman he’s shocked to find in a dark bar one night. A woman who agrees to come back to his apartment for raw, passionate sex.      One erotic, stolen night reopens old wounds, uncovers buried memories and sets Kaine and John on a path filled with danger, magic and potential heartbreak. What B is talking about:      Kaine Gillati is supposed to be one of the strongest of her kind. She is “Sicari”—an elite assassin for the king of the Lucani himself. Now she’s faced with a new discovery about her family that could cost her the only home she’s ever known. John Simmons is determined to protect and shelter his sister and avenge her kidnapping. But when the woman of his dreams becomes real, he learns that nothing is as it seems, and the fight to hold on to her may be his toughest yet.      Edge of Moonlight is another enjoyable installment in the Lucani Lovers series. The stories continue to build on one another as the plot becomes more engaging. Julian stays with what has worked in the other books in the series and uses the conflict, and eventual resolution, Kaine and John face as part of the larger story, while keeping the other characters she’s introduced relevant in the process.      Kaine and John have several very sexy encounters during the course of Edge of Moonlight. Rather than making their sexual discovery one of delicate appreciation turned to passion, or the acceptance of multiple partners, as in the first two novels in the series, these two practically collide with one another in near frenzies, both unable and unwilling to miss any opportunity they find to connect...
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Mar
15

Review: Falling Under

Review: Falling Under Falling Under Author: Gwen Hayes  Release Date: March 1, 2011 Publisher: New American Library (NAL) ISBN: #978-0451232687 Genre: Young Adult, paranormal Format(s): Paperback (336 pgs), ebook I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: In her dreams he’s irresistible—seductive, charming, and undoubtedly dangerous. But when he appears to her when she’s awake—and captivates her just the same—she’s not sure which way is up and which is down.Theia Alderson has always led a sheltered life, not allowed the same freedoms as the rest of the teenagers in the small California town of Serendipity Falls. But when a devastatingly handsome boy appears in the halls of her school, she feels every urge she’s ever denied burning through her at the slightest glance from Haden Black. Theia knows she’s seen Haden before—not around town, but in her dreams. Theia doesn’t understand how she dreamed of Haden before they ever met, but every night has them joined in a haunting world of eerie fantasy. And as the Haden of both the night and the day beckons her forward one moment and pushes her away the next, the only thing Theia knows for sure is that the incredible pull she feels towards him is stronger than her fear. And as she slowly discovers what Haden truly is, Theia’s not sure if she wants to resist him, even if the cost is her soul. What B is talking about: Theia Alderson is an anomaly. She’s shy, overprotected, has a British accent, is a brilliant violinist, and is the object of affection of an irresistible half-demon. Haden Black is the handsome new boy in school but carries a dark secret, one that will change Theia’s life forever.  Although I’m fairly new to YA novels, Falling Under seems wonderfully dark for the genre. It also addresses some very grown-up themes. Hayes doesn’t try to pretend that high school is a bastion of innocence, nor does she insinuate that her characters, and teenagers in general, I believe, will not be able to navigate the unraveling of their own naivety.  There is a strong undercurrent of awakening sexuality running throughout the novel. Thanks to Haden’s restraint, however, Theia is able to experience, and is sometimes hurt by, various stages of desire, from curiosity to longing to desolation. Hayes also addresses the reality of high school promiscuity through one of Theia’s best friends who is a sexually...
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Mar
11

Review: Dead Waters

Review: Dead Waters Dead Waters Author: Anton Strout  Release Date: February 22, 2011 Publisher: Ace Simon Canderous Series Book 4 ISBN: #978-0441020119 Genre: Urban Fantasy Format(s): Paperback (352 pgs), ebook I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: With Manhattan’s Department of Extraordinary Affairs in disarray (forget vampires and zombies- it’s the budget cuts that can kill you), Simon Canderous is still expected to stamp out any crime that adds the “para” to “normal.”  And his newest case is no exception… A university professor has been found murdered in his apartment.  His lungs show signs of death by drowning.  But his skin and clothes? Bone dry. Now Simon has to rely on his own powers- plus a little help from his ghost-whispering partner and technomancer girlfriend- to solve a mystery that has the NYPD stumped and the D.E.A. shaken and stirred. What B is talking about: Simon Canderous has it rough. He’s a psychometrist (someone who can “read” the history of an object by touching it) with the Department of Extraordinary Affairs – Other Division, and he’s trying to solve a murder, all while dealing with bureaucrats and budget cuts. Never mind the resurrected victim, a vengeful Naiad, and his girlfriend’s need for extra drawer space. It’ll take everything Simon and his colleagues can do to save themselves…and New York City while they’re at it!  I wasn’t sure what to think about Dead Waters at first. I felt a little disoriented trying to follow all the scene changes in the beginning, which shouldn’t be surprising when starting an established series with a book other than the first one. The previous books in the series, Dead to Me, Deader Still, and Dead Matter, would definitely have been a more solid beginning.  Aside from the learning curve, I really enjoyed this book. I laughed out loud at Strout’s comic skewering of governmental procedure, oblivious restructuring, and fiscal mishandling. Despite these challenges, the D.E.A. (loved the acronym) functions as a secondary character. In fact, Simon and his fellow employees are more like a moderately dysfunctional family than a team.  Simon isn’t cuddly. He’s immature, vain, and obstinate, but he’s got a lot to contend with to be a young member of the Other Division, especially when his psychometry leaves him with some serious emotional baggage to carry around. Simon is also caring, determined, and heroic, though, and Strout makes it all work somehow.  I...
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Feb
24

Review: Moonlight Menage

Review: Moonlight Menage Moonlight Ménage Author: Stephanie Julian Release Date: March 2010 Publisher: Ellora’s Cave Lucani Lovers, Book 2 ISBN: #978-1419927485 Genre: Paranormal Romance, Erotica Format(s): E-book I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website:      For eight years, Etruscan witch Tira Belludi has longed for the two shifter men who hold her heart. But visions of death and fears for her sanity have forced her to keep her distance.      Nic Rocca and Duke Ducati are brothers in everything but blood and partners who have each other’s backs. They share a home, a job and had planned to share their life with Tira between them…until she saw their future and built a wall around her heart.      Now danger and death stalk Nic and Duke. And Tira must make a choice—grab love while she has the chance or watch Nic die from afar and lose Duke forever. What B is talking about:      Tira Belludi has inherited the gift of “Praenuntio” (foresight) from her mother, but views it as more of a curse. Nic Rocca and Duke Ducati have loved Tira for years, knew instantly she was their mate, but have all but given up on ever finding happiness together since Tira pulled away from them after she foresaw the death of one of their trio, and the destruction of all that remained of it.      Moonlight Ménage is the second book in Julian’s Lucani Lovers series, and while the sex was hotter, Tira’s evolution left me hoping for a little more. Unlike, Tamra, in Kiss of Moonlight, Tira is overwhelmed and cowed by her circumstances throughout most of the novel. By comparison, Nic and Duke are rich, vibrant characters that bear the weight of the story’s conflict well. I did feel sympathetic to Tira’s situation, but wish she’d fought more resolutely for her heart’s desire earlier on.      As to the sex…while I’ve certainly read naughtier depictions (*blush*), Moonlight Ménage definitely ramps it up a notch. Or two, to be more specific. This is a strictly heterosexual ménage a trios, as Nic and Duke never interact sexually with each other, but share Tira as their mate. They are two straight men sharing a sexual relationship with one woman at the same time. Once they all decide to take what they want despite the fate they’d previously accepted, they have a string...
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Feb
16

Review: Kiss of Moonlight

Review: Kiss of Moonlight Kiss of Moonlight Author: Stephanie Julian  Release Date: October 2009 Publisher: Ellora’s Cave Lucani Lovers Series, Book 1 ISBN: #978-1419925399 Genre: Paranormal Romance, Erotica Format(s): E-book I received a copy of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From the author’s website: Plagued by nightmares. Stalked by kidnappers. Tamra McMillan needs a safe haven. When tattooed bad-ass Kyle Rossini steps into her life, she didn’t expect to find a sanctuary from her demons or hot sex. But appearances can be deceiving. His tender touch and the hunger in his eyes brands her his for life. But otherworldly forces are afoot and death hovers… Etruscan werewolf Kyle Rossini is a loner. The king’s assassin with a killer’s instincts. The last thing he needs is a mate.  Until he meets the one woman who needs him more than he needs his solitude. When Tamra stumbles into his world and his bed, she captures his heart. And nothing will keep him from her. What B is talking about: Like any proper Alpha Male, Kyle Rossini keeps mostly to himself, is content to do his job as his king’s assassin, and likes to work on his muscle car in his spare time. An early (and refreshing) deviation from the stereotype comes in the form of Kyle’s fifteen year old daughter, Catene, who decides their new neighbor might be in trouble, and needs checking on. Tamra McMillan is running from her memories of a horrific attack and has isolated herself in her family’s old, run-down cabin in an attempt to come to terms with it and eventually reenter her former life. She’s looking for a decent night’s sleep and some inner peace, not earth-shattering sex, and certainly not a Lucani (an Etruscan skin-shifter) mate. Of course, things hardly ever go as planned, and Tamra gets more than she could have ever anticipated. Readers should know that there are vague flashbacks of the attack on Tamra. They aren’t overly explicit, but are mentioned through her memories and as details from the police report, as well as in a general overview of her case Kyle discovers while looking for particulars on Tamra online. I didn’t feel they overwhelmed the story in any way, however, but instead illustrate Tamra’s inner strength in overcoming what happened to her. Kiss of Moonlight definitely has some predictable moments and repetitions, but they don’t do the book any real harm. Julian injects a lot of originality...
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Feb
15

Review & Giveaway: Pleasures Untold

Review & Giveaway: Pleasures Untold Pleasures Untold Author: Lisa Sanchez  Release Date: February 8, 2011 Publisher: Omnific Publishing Hanaford Park Series Book #2 ISBN: #978-1936305599 Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): paperback (191 pgs), e-book I received a e-ARC of this book from the PUBLISHER for the purposes of an honest review. From Goodreads: Hell hath no fury like a witch done wrong. Pissed off and packing an arsenal of witchy mojo, Martha is on the warpath. Determined to avenge the murder of her mother and grandmother, her mission is simple: kill every vampire, demon and underworld bastard she comes across, because one of those hell beasts might be the monster that stole her childhood from her. But when a sexy Latin vamp literally falls from the sky, saving her from becoming an undead Happy Meal, she has no choice but to reassess everything she thinks she knows.  Xan is an anomaly–a vampire born, not turned. A powerful warlock who walks in daylight, Xan spends his days, and nights, watching over Martha, protecting her from Lucian, the blood-sucking monstrosity whose sole mission in death is to drain her dry. Undeniable attraction and the promise of pleasures untold draw the two lovers into a frustrating dance of one step forward, two steps back. When Lucian throws down a deadly ultimatum, Martha is forced to choose between relying on her own mystical woo woo to save the lives of her stolen friends or succumbing to the lure of dark, voodoo magic. Xan and Martha must work together to save those closest to her and put an end to Lucian’s reign of terror before it’s too late. What I’m talking about: Lisa Sanchez’s sophomore release opens with a trio of roommates heading for a night out after one of the girls broke up with her cheating boyfriend. Never one to conform with the crowds, Martha uses wit and sarcasm to pass the time as they wait to enter the club. Things quickly take a turn for the worse when one roommate heads off alone with a vampire disguised as a co-ed. Using her Wiccan and slaying skills, Martha takes on the undead romeo and finds herself face-to-face with the man of her dreams, literally.  Soon after, Martha’s world begins to turn on edge as she discovers secrets about her own past that have been long hidden. Pleasures Untold is the second story in Ms. Sanchez’s Hanaford Park series about paranormal activities on/near a college campus. Although Martha and her...
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Feb
8

Review: The Last Watcher

Review: The Last Watcher The Last Watcher Author: Misty Burke  Release Date: December 13, 2010 Publisher: Evernight Publishing Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): e-book I received a copy of this book from the author for the purpose of an honest review. From the author’s website: Sarah Thompson knows what it’s like to have a midlife crisis at twenty nine.  She has spent the last several years running her own yoga studio and trying to survive being single in a small gossipy town. And if that were not enough, she decides it is the perfect time to go back to school. So you see, Sarah’s world was already spinning when she learns that her hunky professor has teeth … as in Vampire teeth! This undead hero, aka Charles Underwood, introduces her to a fantastic world filled with good and evil. It is a world where Sarah learns that she is a Watcher. Her birthmark foretells a prophecy that throws her into the middle of a magical conflict where battle lines have already been drawn. Does Sarah trust this new found hero or is she just a pawn in his plans to win the war? What I’m talking about: Sarah Thompson decides to head back to college just before her thirtieth birthday. She rushes into her first class and meets her handsome professor, Charles Underwood. When Sarah is spooked trying to find her car after class, Charles offers her a ride home, and for some reason – although she’s a bit freaked out – she cannot say no. The next morning, when Sarah wakes with confused memories of fangs and her hunky professor, she starts to wonder if the crazy stories her grandmother used to tell her may actually be true.  Sarah is quickly drawn into the supernatural world that surrounds her. She is saved by Charles more than once and she discovers that she is also part of the whole paranormal scene.  The story behind this book is an interesting one. Although my immediate reaction was to think of BUFFY when I read the word “Watcher,” this story is not “The Vampire Slayer.” In fact, the vampires are some of the good guys in Ms. Burke’s tale. A Watchers’ job is to keep balance among the paranormal, but the evil Warlocks want a war – no harmony. Sarah is put in the middle of a battle that she isn’t prepared to join. The premise of harmony among the “freaks” is one I enjoyed reading. Although...
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Feb
3

Review: The Werewolf Upstairs

Review: The Werewolf Upstairs The Werewolf Upstairs Author: Ashlyn Chase Release Date: February 1, 2011 Publisher: Sourcebooks Strange Neighbors Book #2 ISBN: #978-1402236624 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 Goodreads: Desperate for change, public defender Roz Wells decides moving into a new apartment is just what she needs to shake things up. But she’ll get more than she bargained for when she starts dating the drop dead gorgeous boy next door, who just happens to be a shape-shifter…and quite possibly a criminal.  Security salesman Konrad Wolfensen has made a living staging break-ins to spook people into buying his security system, but when he’s accused of a much more serious crime, he’ll have to enlist the help of his sexy new neighbor/girlfriend to keep his cute, slightly wild rear end out of jail. What I’m talking about: The Werewolf Upstairs is in a genre of books I like to refer to as Paranormal Chick-Lit. As those of you that follow my reviews know, I don’t read a lot of “light and fluffy” paranormal stories, so I cannot compare this book to others with a similar feel. But what I can tell you is that this story was a fun romp, and I plan to read future books in this series. Roz moves into her best friend’s (Merry) apartment while Merry is off on her honeymoon. (Merry’s romance was the focus of the first book in the series, Strange Neighbors. You do not need to read the first book to enjoy this book.) Roz quickly finds herself falling for upstairs neighbor Konrad. After just one kiss, the couple are able to communicate telepathically and Konrad realizes that Roz is his pre-destined soulmate. Konrad decides to quit his shady thieving career, while Roz wants a more fulfilling job. Together they set off on a series of “dates” to find a new career.  As each day passes they fall more in love, but with Konrad keeping his true identity from Roz, you know things are going to get messy. The Werewolf Upstairs is a delightful, easy read. Roz and Konrad are not overly complex characters and there are no major twists and turns to the plot. Other than Konrad’s big secret, the two main characters are refreshingly open and honest in their communication and thoughts. Early on in the story, when Konrad carried an injured Roz over...
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Jan
28

Review: Archangel’s Consort

Review: Archangel’s Consort Archangel’s Consort Author: Nalini Singh  Release Date: January 25, 2011 Publisher: Berkley Group Guild Hunter Series Book #3 ISBN: #978-0425240137 Genre: Paranormal Romance Format(s): paperback (352 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:       Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux and her lover, the lethally beautiful archangel Raphael, have returned home to New York only to face an uncompromising new evil…      A vampire has attacked a girls’ school—the assault one of sheer, vicious madness—and it is only the first act. Rampant bloodlust takes vampire after vampire, threatening to make the streets run with blood. Then Raphael himself begins to show signs of an uncontrolled rage, as inexplicable storms darken the city skyline and the earth itself shudders. The omens are suddenly terrifyingly clear. An ancient and malevolent immortal is rising. The violent winds whisper her name: Caliane. She has returned to reclaim her son, Raphael. Only one thing stands in her way: Elena, the consort who must be destroyed… What I’m talking about:       Picking up shortly after the conclusion of second Guild Hunter book (Archangel’s Kiss) this story opens with Hunter-born-made-angel Elena Deveraux back in her home town of New York. She is a different person than when she left – now an immortal angel, and we are witness to the adjustments she must make as she reclaims her Guild Hunter life and reacquaints herself with old friends.       As vampires all over the world begin to rebel and take human lives, Elena and her Archangel mate, Raphael, must work together to determine if the cause is Raphael’s millennia-old mother rising from her 1,000 year hibernation. As they investing the growing crimes, Elena is torn between her loyalties to her human friends and her immortal lover.       One thing that I absolutely love about this story is that becoming an immortal does not give Elena a golden ticket to instantly transform into super-being. The newly-made angel did not gain super-power and an easy life when she was made immortal. She has to train and struggle, learn and overcome with each step.  I also enjoyed Elena’s journey as she learned to balance her former ties with that of her loyalty to Raphael. We witness her emotional struggles knowing the choices she has made, learning when to hold her ground and where her heart truly...
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