Monday, 30 December 2013

Madeleine Abducted by M.S. Willis (The Estate #1)

Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Suspense, Romance
Publication Date: October 15th 2013
POV: Alternating - Third-person, Past tense
Smut-O-Meter: 10 out of 10
My Rating: 5 out of 5


She was meant to be his destruction…
A pawn played in a perilous game between father and son…
Yet, her strength was more than either man could imagine.
As Maddy learns to save herself…
She becomes the one thing that could set the son free.

Madeleine Clark was raised to become a concert cellist. Sheltered and naïve, she remains hidden behind her music, a protection from the world around her. On the night of her first solo performance, Maddy accepts the admiration of a stranger and finds herself captive in a cruel and twisted power struggle between a sadistic father and his son, Aaron.

Seemingly dangerous and uncaring, Aaron manages the business operations of his father’s estate. Wanting nothing to do with the slaves kept at the Estate, Aaron refuses to take part in the deeper depravities of his father. Despite his resistance, Aaron’s father ‘gifts’ him with a petite, brunette woman he can’t refuse.

A bond forged in conspiracy and deceit, Aaron struggles to save Maddy by teaching her to survive in the world in which he’d been raised. An unlikely union, Aaron soon learns that great strengths can exist within small packages, while Madeleine learns that love and light can exist in the darkest of places.


This book grabbed me by the horns and would not let me go, and still hasn't.Instantly, I was captivated and amazed by Maddy as a character. The strength she had, despite being a small, shy woman, as she woke up to find herself naked and chained to a cot in a strange, dark room. She didn't scream and despair, she didn't panic. She held herself together long enough to discover that there was a hidden light in the darkness.

"...he'd been left with no choice but to turn his own angel against him, to treat a treasured jewel as nothing more than filth scraped across the bottom of his boots."

Aaron was a man lost. Lost in his own darkness. Lost in the life of crime that was forced on him by his father. You could see that he was fighting the life that he had been dealt. Like another Aaron, his father sought to corrupt him, and although he revelled in the control and violence of his position in his father's organization, he had limits. Lines he refused to cross. He wouldn't let his soul be wholly lost.

Aaron has never brought a woman that he could care about into his life, knowing how he would corrupt her. Knowing how his father would use her against him. But, when Aaron shows special interest in the beautiful concert cellist Madeleine Clark, he unwillingly gives his father the tool to control and destroy him. But what his father didn't know, was that by bringing Madeleine and Aaron together, he had also given them both a reason to fight, to face down death and become lions.

"There was light in him, one so bright it could illuminate the entire night sky if only it wasn't covered over by the shadows of his darkness."

The writing and dialogue in this book is beautiful, but you should be warned of the darkness you will find. It is full of abuse, inhumane degradation, and violence; but above all, the strength of the human spirit and enduring love. But the violence did almost overshadow the beauty of this story near the end. It is the reason for the missing half a star. I'm talking about graphic disembowelment, dismemberment, and beheadings. I knew to expect more violence for the climax of the story, but I didn't expect it to be that strong. It was much more than I would have wanted, or what I was comfortable with and it really turned me off for a few moments. But before that I was convinced it was going to be a 5-star book. I still feel like it deserves a 5-star rating rather than 4-star, though.

A bonus point for this book, is that the scene on the cover actually did happen. Its rare that they have such exact representations on book covers. I highly recommend this book for fans of dark and intense romance. You wont soon forget it.

"Through her strength and her bravery, Maddy had not only saved herself, but also Aaron: By opening her eyes and discovering that hidden deeply within the recesses of the executioner's soul, there was goodness, there was compassion, there was love and there was honor; but above it all...deep within the infinite darkness...there was light."

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Sentinel by Jennifer L. Armentrout (Covenant, #5)

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy/Mythology, Romance
Publication Date: October 31st 2013
POV: Female - First-person, Past tenseMy Rating: 4 out of 5


It's a beautiful day for a war.

As the mortal world slowly slips into chaos of the godly kind, Alexandria Andros must overcome a stunning defeat that has left her shaken and in doubt of their ability to end this war once and for all.

And with all the obstacles between Alex and her happily-ever-after with the swoon-worthy Aiden St. Delphi, they must now trust a deadly foe as they travel deep into the Underworld to release one of the most dangerous gods of all time.

In the stunning, action-packed climax to the bestselling Covenant series, Alex must face a terrible choice: the destruction of everything and everyone she holds dear… or the end of herself.


This book was great for the most part. It renewed my faith in the series after Apollyon which I found to be a big disappointment and pretty uneventful. But a lot happened in this one and it was exciting. I really enjoyed Perses and I hope he is in The Return. And I loved Seth in this one.

This was possibly Seth's best book. This one or Pure. I was Team Seth from the beginning until Deity. And Elixir was definitely Aiden's best book. After those two there was really no denying how much they belonged together. But I still loved Seth and I am pretty happy about how things turned out for him. Except for the him-being-sad part.

But overall, I'm not a huge fan of the ending. The final battle was anticlimactic and unfolded exactly as was
expected. And the ending for Alex was weird and unnecessarily confusing. It reminds me of the ending to the Evernight series. It was not really a bad ending, but it wasn't entirely satisfying either.

At first I preferred this series to Lux, but after a few disappointments, and how Origin blew my mind, I am not sure if that is still the case. We shall see after Opposition. But this was an amazing series either way. Alex is still among my top 5 heroines and Seth is still a great character and I wont forget him anytime soon. It was an incredible world and an incredible story. I always feel a sense of relief after finishing a great series which I am ready to move on from.

“He was my strength when I needed him to be, my friend when I needed someone to talk me down, my equal in a world where by law I would always be less than him, and honest to gods, he was the love of my life.”

Sunday, 22 December 2013

True by Laurann Dohner (New Species #11)

Genres: Adult, Sci-fi, Romance
Publication Date: December 10th 2013
POV: Alternating - Third-person, Past tense
Smut-O-Meter: 8 out of 10
My Rating: 4 out of 5


Jeanie loves a New Species and is willing to pay for that love with pain, tears and heartbreak. She’ll do anything to keep 710 alive but she never wants him to know how she suffered for him. He’s the reason for her mission in life—freeing others like him.

True has a new life working with the NSO to rescue his people. A good life, until he encounters a dying woman—the female who betrayed him. True should feel gratified that she’s finally going to pay for her crimes, but she claims to be a victim too. He is still irresistibly drawn to the pretty little human who touched his heart and made him want her. When he clasps her hand to offer comfort, his instincts kick in and True will fight everyone to protect her.


I really loved this book! It was just what I needed! I hated that I had caught up and now need to wait in between New Species books, but this was worth the wait.

I really loved Jeanie. She was pretty bad ass. She had so much inner strength and she was so brave. She fought for the NS like almost none other. She is such an amazing champion for them. She is fearless. The story surrounding her and the mysterious Terry Brice was different and fascinating. This still had the usual NS mandatory kidnappings, but it was very different circumstances and it really drew me in with the mystery of it and what was really going on. I couldn't put it down.

I also really loved True. He was a bit softer than most NS. Still very dominating, but also a little insecure and just so sweet. He was a great character and he was wonderful to Jeanie. A complete sweetheart. They are a wonderful couple and I am incredibly happy for them. I cant wait until they have children! He's gonna be such an awesome father!

I was so sad when I finished this book. I didn't want it to end. And although I enjoyed the softer side of True, I still cannot wait to read about Darkness next, one of the most intimidating and "darkest" NS there are. That must be why he chose that name, because he feels like Mercile ripped out his heart and left nothing but darkness behind. But he has a heart, and some incredible woman is going to discover that. Wow! She is gonna be amazing. I cant wait!

“She rolled over and sat up as he bent, tearing off his boots. "Whatcha doing?" 
"Getting naked." 
"I like that.”

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Keturah and Lord Death by Martine Leavitt

Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Paranormal, Romance
Publication Date: November 1st 2006
POV: Female - First-person, Past tense
My Rating: 4 out of 5


Martine Leavitt offers a spellbinding story, interweaving elements of classic fantasy and high romance. Keturah follows a legendary hart into the king's forest, where she becomes hopelessly lost. Her strength diminishes until, finally, she realizes that death is near. Little does she know that he is a young, handsome lord, melancholy and stern. Renowned for her storytelling, Keturah is able to charm Lord Death with a story and thereby gain a reprieve -- but only for twenty-four hours. She must find her one true love within that time, or all is lost. Keturah searches desperately while the village prepares for an unexpected visit from the king, and Keturah is thrust into a prominent role as mysterious happenings alarm her friends and neighbors. Lord Death's presence hovers over all until Keturah confronts him one last time in the harrowing climax.

This was such a unique story. I loved it. It read like a fairy tale, or folklore or myth. Keturah was such an unusual girl. She had never been in love, but she wanted to love with all that she was. It seemed to be her life's ambition to find her soul mate and fall madly in love. But there was no one that piqued her interest. She gave everyone a fair chance. She was very forward about it. She spoke to every man in her town to see if she could love them, some she even told the truth of why she was speaking to them.

When she got lost in the woods and Death came for her, she convinced him to give her another day to find her true love. She didnt want to die before finding her love. Each day she goes back to Death and convinces him to give her another day. Three days she searches high and low. At first, she thinks she might love Ben, the best gardener in town. Then she thinks she might love John, the Lord's son. But neither prospect fills her with happiness. Something is missing, until she realizes what it is.

It was beautifully poetic and I loved every minute of it. I was so anxious to get to the end and find out who Keturah's true love was. Although part of me knew, I just didnt want to get my hopes up. :P

My only complaint is that the story started as a story within a story. Keturah is around a fire and begins to tell the story of when she met death. But at the end, it does not go back to an older Keturah, and the beginning doesnt really fit with the ending. I am kind of confused about that. Also it never explained why the eye slowed down for Ben and wept for John. But besides that, this book would have been perfect!

“She knew she had never been truly alive until she met him, and never so happy and content with her lot until she was touched by the sorrow of him.”

Monday, 2 December 2013

Untold by Sarah Rees Brennan (The Lynburn Legacy #2)

Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Publication Date: August 29th 2013
POV: Alternating - Third-person, Past tense
My Rating: 5 out of 5


It's time to choose sides....

On the surface, Sorry-in-the-Vale is a sleepy English town. But Kami Glass knows the truth. Sorry-in-the-Vale is full of magic. In the old days, the Lynburn family ruled with fear, terrifying the people into submission in order to kill for blood and power. Now the Lynburns are back, and Rob Lynburn is gathering sorcerers so that the town can return to the old ways.

But Rob and his followers aren’t the only sorcerers in town. A decision must be made: pay the blood sacrifice, or fight. For Kami, this means more than just choosing between good and evil. With her link to Jared Lynburn severed, she’s now free to love anyone she chooses. But who should that be?

A darkly humorous take on Gothic romance, Sarah Rees Brennan's Lynburn Legacy weaves together the tale of a heroine desperate to protect those she loves, two boys hoping to be saved, and the magical forces that will shape their destiny.


This more than makes up for the heartbreaking ending to Unspoken. I find that relationship cliffhangers kill me the most. They are way worse than story or action cliffhangers. That's why the ending of Unspoken destroyed me, but I was fine with the ending of Opal.

This story has more of what we loved in book one. More of the humour and the brilliant Kami. More of the awesome sidekicks Angie and Rusty. More of the brooding Jared and Golden Boy Ash. Especially Ash. We got to know him a lot better in this book and I really feel for him. He is so often overlooked. I hope he gets more affection from his mother in book 3.
"Everyone all right?" 
"I'm okay," [Holly] said. "I see you are too. I also see you have a weapon that is on fire." 
"I'm badass like that," Kami said.

Kami and Jared also break my heart. They are like star-crossed lovers. There are so many things set against them. But Jared is such a hero and a martyr. In that way he kind of reminds me of the Rajaram brothers from Tiger's Curse. He has traits of both. But make no mistake, he is not as awesome as Kishan. Very few people can compete with the love of my life, and none of those outside of my holy Quartet (Kishan, Ash, Warner, Jem). But, there is a great shortage of amazing heroines, so Kami does make the cut for me. She is whip-smart and clever and funny, and amazingly brave and strong. There are not enough heroines like her.

Although so far this has been a very clean YA series, Kami and Jared are still totally epic and they both love each other unconditionally and passionately. And not just romantically, but any way they can. Its Eros, Storge, Pragma, Mania, Philia, and Agape. And that, my friends, is beautiful!

"Do you remember how you used to believe I wasn't real? Sometimes I wish that was true. If I was just a thought in the back of your mind, then I'd be with you, and I'd be better."

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon (The Bone Season #1)

Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal/Mythology, Sci-fi/Dystopian, Romance
Publication Date: August 20th 2013
POV: Female - First-person, Past tense
My Rating: 4 out of 5


It is the year 2059. Several major world cities are under the control of a security force called Scion. Paige Mahoney works in the criminal underworld of Scion London, part of a secret cell known as the Seven Seals. The work she does is unusual: scouting for information by breaking into others’ minds. Paige is a dreamwalker, a rare kind of clairvoyant, and in this world, the voyants commit treason simply by breathing.

But when Paige is captured and arrested, she encounters a power more sinister even than Scion. The voyant prison is a separate city—Oxford, erased from the map two centuries ago and now controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. These creatures, the Rephaim, value the voyants highly—as soldiers in their army.

Paige is assigned to a Rephaite keeper, Warden, who will be in charge of her care and training. He is her master. Her natural enemy. But if she wants to regain her freedom, Paige will have to learn something of his mind and his own mysterious motives.

The Bone Season introduces a compelling heroine—a young woman learning to harness her powers in a world where everything has been taken from her. It also introduces an extraordinary young writer, with huge ambition and a teeming imagination. Samantha Shannon has created a bold new reality in this riveting debut.


This book was super awesome and I am tempted to give it 5-stars, but I think I am gonna have to stick to 4 for a couple of reasons. The first being the major info-dumping that happened in the first 50 pages of the book. I had some trouble getting through that, but I hope you will find it easier, after reading this and knowing that greatness is waiting on the other side. The other reason this loses a star is because of the amount of different clairvoyants there are, and trying to keep track of them all, and their weird names and what they all mean. Some are straightforward; like soothsayers, and mediums, and necromancers. Others are not; like drymimancers, astragalomancers, and cleidomancers. These kinds of words kept getting thrown at us as if we were supposed to know what it meant. Eventually I had to just give up and skim over them. Although, you can sometimes pick up what they mean from the context.
One of the first things you need to know before starting this book is that there is absolutely no basis for any comparison to J.K. Rowling. That is a ludicrous claim that no one should have ever made. If Samantha Shannon's writing emulates anyone, it would be Veronica Roth. World and tone-wise, I would compare this to The Hunger Games. And characters and romance-wise, I would compare this to Shatter Me and Half-Blood. I thought it was absolutely engrossing, but its still just a YA paranormal. A great YA paranormal. Story and mythology-wise there is nothing I can think to compare this to.
  The story starts out with Paige in Scion, explaining to us how clairvoyants have become feared and hunted over the years, starting with the alternate history of King Edward VII. The info-dumping explains Scion's underworld, but its not really that important. After less than 50 pages Paige is taken away to Sheol. Sheol is a hidden city where supernatural beings who have made a pact with the Scion government, take clairvoyants to enslave them. The Rephaim of Jewish mythology are giant, beautiful beings from the netherworld. Its a complex mythology and I am sure there is still a lot more to learn about them in the future books.

Paige's new master is Arcturus, usually called Warden. He is intimidating and a strict task-master as he teaches her to use her gift to become a soldier fighting the Emim, creatures that followed the Rephaim from the netherworld. I hated him so much at the beginning. He never beat her like the other keepers, but he let bad things happen to her and other people, and he tried to force her to cooperate. But Paige's spirit was strong. She was a fighter. In that way she reminded me of Juliette and how she fought against Warner in book 1 of Shatter Me. How she refused to play his games. 

“I looked at him and he looked at me. A moment. A choice. My choice. His choice.”

But unlike in Shatter Me, there is no love-triangle in this. As much as I hated Warden in the beginning, I suspected he would become the love interest, and the book actually brought me around to that idea by the end. I was rooting for Warden way sooner than I would have expected myself to, considering how much I hated him in the beginning. He was stoic, and mysterious, but you could tell how much he was watching out for Paige. He took care of her as much as he could get away with before it would become suspicious. And in that way, he reminded me of Warner, and I really recommend this book for fans of Shatter Me. I am very curious where their relationship will go in the end. It is a planned 7-books series, so they have a long journey ahead of them.

This series is a lot darker than the average YA novel, though. The Rephaim were torturing and killing humans left, right, and center. There was always a sense of danger and mystery, because we didnt know how much danger Paige was really in. How many of the Rephaim knew what she was up to? Did Warden know? What did he want from her? You never really knew, until it was too late. Its a really unique, complex world that captivated me. I highly recommend this book!

“I would never see him again.But as I watched the tunnel race before my eyes, I was certain of one thing: I did trust him. Now I had only to trust in myself.”

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Deception's Web by Crista McHugh (Deizian Empire #3)

Genres: Adult, Sci-fi/Fantasy, Romance
Publication Date: December 7th 2013
POV: Alternating - Third-person, Past tense
Smut-O-Meter: 8 out of 10
My Rating: 4 out of 5


A soldier looking for redemption falls into the arms of the empire's Black Widow...

Galerius, former Captain of the Legion, is honored to be given a chance to redeem himself by discovering who is behind the failing barrier. A series of anonymous letters all point to Hostilius, governor of Lucrilia, but Galerius thinks he'll learn more about the plot by seducing the governor's thrice widowed daughter, Claudia. Although he warns himself not to fall into snare of the empire's most deadly temptress, one kiss leaves him begging for more.

Claudia has spent years as a pawn in her father's political games and longs to break free of his rule, even it means betraying him to the emperor. When Galerius arrives in Tivola, she's not sure if he's there to aid her father or stop him. She willingly submits to his seduction, despite their class differences, in order to find the truth. What she doesn't expect to find is a man who indulges her secret fantasies, satisfying her in a way none of her previous husbands did, and treats her as something more than a conquest. As time runs out to thwart her father's plans, she must decide if she can trust Galerius not only with her life, but her heart.


I enjoyed this one more than Poisoned Web, and almost as much as Tangled Web. The thing I loved the most about this book was the tension and level of danger in Galerius' mission. The scene in the tunnels at the end really had my heart racing.

Galerius and Claudia were as strong characters as the previous leads, and I can't really say who my favourites are. I love them all. I think I may have a soft spot for the brooding Galerius though. I am so happy that he got an HEA. He deserved it. So did Claudia. Its hard to believe that she is the same person who was trying to steal the Emperor from Azurha in book one.

The story in this one was well developed and I loved seeing Galerius' slowly unraveling Hostilius' plot. And the romance was perfectly paced. At first I was thinking it was all just sex, but before I knew it I could see their relationship developing into something so much deeper. It may have been too long since I read Tangled Web, but I think perhaps the relationship between Galerius and Claudia is my favourite of the series. They make a perfect pair.

I absolutely adore the beautiful world Crista McHugh created for this series, and she could always write much more set in the Deizian Empire. I would not be apposed to that a story about Marcus.

“Its practically suicide. And for what? For some woman?" 
"Not just some woman." He grabbed a dagger and strapped it to his thigh under his tunic. "The woman. The only one I'll ever need or want.”

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Switched by Cassie Mae

Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Humour, Romance
Publication Date: December 2nd 2013
POV: Female - First-person, Present tense.
My Rating: 3 out of 5


Ever since high school, Kayla has been crazy for gorgeous football player Talon. But before she could muster the courage to tell him, he became a hot item with her beautiful BFF, Reagan. The only person who knows Kayla’s secret is Wesley, Talon’s best bud—and he’s got it bad for Reagan. Now they’re all in college together, hanging out 24/7. For Kayla, seeing the two lovebirds together is absolutely unbearable. So Kayla and Wesley hatch a plot to drive them apart before Talon has a chance to give Reagan the Christmas gift she’s been waiting for.

Soon enough, the once happy couple is fighting. Reagan suddenly can’t get enough of Wesley’s goofy sense of humor, and Talon seems to be paying more attention to Kayla than a guy who’s “only a friend” ever should. But just when everything seems to be falling into place, Kayla and Wesley accidentally spend a night together and discover a hitch in their plan they never considered: that switching partners may not lead to a perfect ending after all.


This book still had Cassie Mae's writing style, great humour, and cute characters, but the whole concept and the story just did not work for me.

So, to start out, there is a love-square. Reagan and Talon are together, but Reagan's best friend, Kayla, is also in love with Talon. And Talon's best friend, Wesley, is also in love with Reagan. So Kayla and Wesley get together and make a plan to break up Reagan and Talon and steal their best friends' significant others. Horrible people and worst BFFs of all time? Yep.

So not only was this a horrible plan for moral reasons, but its pretty obvious from the beginning that Kayla and Wesley have great chemistry. So I could see from a mile away where this was going to lead, even though I hadn't read the blurb before starting the book.

The best part of this book was definitely Wesley. There is no denying that Cassie Mae is great at creating adorably awkward male characters with great senses of humour. Her books are for people who enjoy realistic stories with real guys. Her books don't have larger than life, too-good-to-be-true love interests. Every scene with Wesley was worth reading, and I enjoyed seeing him and Kayla falling in love. But it just took too damn long!

Even while Kayla was thinking, "Has Wesley always been that cute? Why does he give me butterflies?" she still refers to Talon as her soul mate. It really got tedious after like 20%. Not only was the obvious shouting in their faces, they were pretty much admitting it to their own faces, and still not realizing what it was they were admitting! Gah! I wanted to pull my hair out. And at the end, they both admit that they want each other several times more than they ever wanted Reagan or Talon. Yet they wanted Talon and Reagan enough to fight dirty for them. To come up with their evil plan. Yet they never really fought for each other until now. It didn't really make sense.

Then of course there is the little twist. [I cant really believe that Reagan and Talon planned everything. It was ridiculously far fetched. And they would have to be like the best actors of all time to fool their best friends for months. And Reagan was seriously bawling her eyes out when she "broke up" with Talon. Did she fake that too? Its just too much for me to swallow. Not to mention the fact that it is almost as evil as what Kayla and Wesley did. They only get a little credit for the fact that they had better intentions. But if my friends ever fooled me so completely, plotted and lied and put me through so much pain on the hunch that we would make a good couple, I would have crucified them. Not to mention how stupid and embarrassed I would feel. Seriously, maybe I am just not a good person, but I think if I had gone through that, and even given that I did end up with the guy they were trying to force me on, I don't think I would ever be able to be friends with them again. Setting friends up on a date, maybe lying about it being a group outing, and then all opting out at the last minute, that's one thing. But this level of deception is not something I am ok with. ]

Not to mention the fact that I hated Reagan. She was so annoying! And kind of a bitch. Seriously, what did either of those guys see in her? Although Kayla clearly belonged with Wesley, I could still kind of see her with Talon. He was a nice guy. But Wesley or Talon with Reagan? Not really.

This book is listed as NA, but I am listing it as YA. Even though the characters are all in their first year of college, it reads like a YA, and the immaturity level is pretty extreme. There is nothing graphic either. Lots of making-out, but that's it. I really would have loved this book if it was about Wesley and Kayla in a completely different scenario. And I still really look forward to reading How to Date a Nerd, because I really enjoy her writing style.

“I love my best friend’s boyfriend. But I swear, I saw him first.”

Thursday, 31 October 2013

The Sharpest Blade by Sandy Williams (Shadow Reader #3)

Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy, Romance
Publication Date: December 31st 2013
POV: Female - First-person, Present tense
Smut-O-Meter: 5 out of 10
My Rating: 4 out of 5


Torn between two worlds.
Torn between two lives.

McKenzie Lewis’s ability to read the shadows has put her—and …those she loves—in harm’s way again and again. The violence must end, but will the cost of peace be more devastating than anyone ever imagined?

After ten years of turmoil, the life McKenzie has always longed for may finally be within her grasp. No one is swinging a sword at her head or asking her to track the fae, and she finally has a regular—albeit boring—job. But when a ruthless enemy strikes against her friends, McKenzie abandons her attempt at normalcy and rushes back to the Realm.

With the fae she loves and the fae she’s tied to pulling her in different directions, McKenzie must uncover the truth behind the war and accept the painful sacrifices that must be made to end it. Armed with dangerous secrets and with powerful allies at her side, her actions will either rip the Realm apart—or save it.


This was the final installment of this amazing series, and it was a great way to go. This series has always been non-stop action and thrills, with dozens of characters and constant changing of settings. So much is going, like an Urban Fantasy. But with the amount of romance in it, it also feels like a PNR.

I love McKenzie as a heroine. She held her own against the fae. She couldn't beat them in a fight, but she could keep her wits about her, and she was never afraid to do what she had to for the fae she sided with. But her number one trait, is the fact that she made a decision in regards to the love-triangle at the end of book 1, and she never went back. She never regretted it. She never even bent a little bit. Even though she may have loved them both once, she will never betray the one that she chose to love now. More YA heroines need to be like her.

I informed readers in my first two reviews that although this is an adult series, there is no objectionable material for younger readers besides a few F-bombs. But this book is the first in the series to have a sex scene, although it remains fairly clean, being described in the vaguest of terms. But it does not fade to black.

I love this fae world and the idea of shadow readers and the fae powers. It was a combination of the familiar fae world and the new. Basically, I feel the exact same about this book as I did the first two in the series. Either of my other reviews could be applied to this one. I highly recommend this book to fans of fae, strong heroines, and action-packed romance.

“...between two rapid beats of my heart, someone else's breaks.”

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Charming by Elliott James (Pax Arcana #1)

Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy, Romance
Publication Date: September 24th 2013
POV: Male - First-person, Past tense
Smut-O-Meter: 2 out of 10
My Rating: 4 out of 5


John Charming isn't your average Prince...

He comes from a line of Charmings — an illustrious family of dragon slayers, witch-finders and killers dating back to before the fall of Rome. Trained by a modern day version of the Knights Templar, monster hunters who have updated their methods from chainmail and crossbows to kevlar and shotguns, he was one of the best. That is — until he became the abomination the Knights were sworn to hunt.

That was a lifetime ago. Now, he tends bar under an assumed name in rural Virginia and leads a peaceful, quiet life. One that shouldn't change just because a vampire and a blonde walked into his bar... Right?


I haven't read a lot of Urban Fantasy in the past, but I saw this on NetGalley and I decided to try it because the premise sounded unique, and I read a lot of PNRs, and how different can that be from UF? UF is a bit more mature, darker, more violent, and less romantic. But I still loved this book, it was a lot of fun, action-packed, and still a little romantic. I love John. He was so funny and just a fascinating person, after everything he has been through that he turned out the way that he has. Sad and cynical but still full of jokes and willing to fight for a future for himself.

his book was really cleverly written. I loved all the characters, and the dialogue, and the way that John's narration knew it was a narration, and would sometimes address the readers directly. There were so many wonderful, quotable moments. A large amount of this book is highlighted on my Kindle.

But I should be more specific. I loved all the characters beside Dvornik. He was a complete "ass-hat", as John would call him. It really bugs me that I don't understand how he ever had a relationship with Sig. Its not just that I don't like him, but I don't think it was explained well enough. I really don't get it and it took away from my enjoyment of the book a bit. I wish their relationship had somehow been made more believable.

The romance in this really surprised me, since there usually isn't a lot of romance in UFs. There wasn't as much as in the average PNR, but it was still romantic and totally cute. I loved the way that John and Sig acted like teenagers around each other. Probably because of the fact that Sig already had a boyfriend, it made them shy and hesitant, like teenagers who are afraid of admitting their feelings. I am really looking forward to what will happen between them now. I will definitely be reading the next book in this series.

“I was sad but it felt like the sadness was pouring out of me instead of poisoning me. I felt like I had been sleeping in the dark, not knowing I was in a coffin until someone pried the lid off. It hurt, but it was good, the way love is supposed to be.”

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Fireblood by Trisha Wolfe (Fireblood #1)

Genres: Young Adult, Sci-fi, Dystopian, Romance
Publication Date: December 17th 2013
POV: Female - First-person, Present tense
My Rating: 4 out of 5


To save a kingdom, Zara must choose between a prince who could be the answer and a rising rebellion that threatens to take control.

When Zara Dane is chosen to marry Prince Sebastian Hart, son of the man who ordered her father’s capture, Zara knows she must fight to save everything she loves from ruin.

Being betrothed to the prince means a life trapped behind the towering stone walls of the Camelot-forged realm. Under the watchful eye of the prince's first knight, Sir Devlan Capra, changing her future becomes difficult.

When an unlikely rebel reveals the truth about the deadly secrets that fuel King Hart’s twisted world, Zara’s path to rescue her father becomes clouded by deception. The Rebels clear her path by forcing Zara’s hand with an ultimatum: sway Prince Sebastian to join the Rebels, convincing him of his father’s evil nature, or they will take him out.

But Zara is uncertain about a future under the Rebels’ command and where the prince’s heart truly lies. She must decide who to trust, what to believe, and what she’s truly fighting for before the king destroys all of Karm, including her heart.


This book really grabbed me by the heart and would not let me go. Although I have one major issue with it which is the cause of the 4 stars, and I will get to that later. I was tempted to even move it down to a 3 because it was kind of a major issue. But I really enjoyed the story so I couldn't do it.

First of all, the story was totally captivating and I just could not put this book down. I read way past my bedtime. For the first part of the book it was fascinating but in a subdued sort of way. I thought it would be about Zara coming to terms with her position as Queen and using her influence over Sebastian to try to make a better kingdom--while also loving someone else. But then the rebels were introduced to the story and it became so much more complex. There was so much more going on than I gathered from reading Unveiled.

When I first saw the cover for this book I really liked the appearance of the characters. Zara was gorgeous but there was something about her that still looked strong. But I didn't even know the half of it. Zara was amazing, and so was Devlan. The cover made him look strong but kind, and he was. He was so protective of Zara and it made me like him instantly, before I really knew anything else about his character. They had so much chemistry that I felt like they couldn't even be in the same room with Sebastian or he would be able to see it simmering between them. Their romance moved faster than I first anticipated, which I am very glad for. I wasn't sure at first what the romance level would be in this.

Now my problem with this book was Sebastian. And the problem was that I liked him. He was a tormented character from the beginning but I never bought him as a villain. Not that I was 'Team Sebastian' or anything, but I saw the goodness in him that Zara seemed to see in the beginning. I felt sorry for him whenever she rejected him. He was an ass to her sometimes, especially when he hurt her, and I don't agree with some of his actions, but I certainly do not think that Zara's actions were justified either. She treated him worse than he deserved. And when she lost faith in him in the end, she jump to the extremes about him being worse than his father. I really thought she was getting through to him when she told him all her secrets. I could see him beginning to open his eyes. But then it was ruined and I think he started to act a little out of character. Its hard to believe he would do some of the awful things he did in the end, without really understanding where it came from. We never met King Hart and we never saw Sebastian interact with him so its hard to believe that that darkness had been seeded in him by his father. We never saw where it came from, we were just told "he's Hart's son" and are supposed to know that that is enough to make him evil. And Zara's actions in the end make me incredibly sad. Its hard to accept what she and the rebels did. But if I had seen Sebastian as a true villain, as I get the impression I was supposed to, then I assume none of it would have bothered me. So it doesn't ruin my feelings for the other characters. I can see what Trisha Wolfe intend, the book just didn't bring me there like it was supposed to. But overall I don't like how his character was handled. He was either portrayed too kind in the beginning, or not evil enough in the end. It all just left a sour taste in my mouth.

Besides that I loved how things turned out in the end. I really enjoyed seeing Fallon and Xander and the roles they played in this story. It was a huge HEA all around and I especially enjoyed the epilogue. Zara and Devlan seemed to be in a perfect place for them. I am not sure where the story can go from here, but I am excited to find out.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

On Midnight Wings by Adrian Phoenix (The Maker's Song #5)

Genres: Adult, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Romance, Suspense
Smut-O-Meter: 1 out of 10
My Rating: 4 out of 5


A desperate search. A dark and dangerous journey. And every step could destroy everyone Dante loves.

Only one mortal woman can save him . . .

As Dante Baptiste’s true identity as both True Blood and Fallen ripples throughout New Orleans, he and Heather struggle for their lives against different foes, fighting their way back to each other. To free herself from her father’s treachery, Heather accepts help from an ally–and steps into even greater danger. Dante, lost to his brutal past, wavers between his own sense of self and the Bad Seed-programmed S that lurks within, between the never-ending Road and the Great Destroyer. And the danger of becoming both.

. . . unless the fallen reach him first.

Lucien searches frantically for the lovers, all too aware that time is running out. Dark forces continue to gather, eager to possess and manipulate the young vampire for their own ends. The fate of mortals, nightkind, and the Fallen pivots around Dante as he struggles to piece together his shattered psyche and gain control of his power before he rips all three worlds asunder.


I love this series and the complex world Adrian Phoenix created. I love it as much as I did after reading book 1, A Rush of Wings, and being totally blown away. And I love Heather, and Dante, and Lucien more and more with each book. But I feel like the story is really getting drawn out.

Its just been a constant stream of Dante being kidnapped and tortured by vampires, psychopaths, evil angels, the government, other branches of the government, eviler angels, etc, etc. I am really getting tired of it. I guess this is all leading towards pushing Dante into becoming the Great Destroyer and then probably being saved by Heather, but I don't like seeing quite so much of it. Its starting to all seem the same.

Although the more Dante is tortured and pushed to his limits, the more I love him. I LOVE DANTE SO
MUCH!!! But its not even in a swoony book-boyfriend kind of way. I just love him so much as a person and admire his strength. I sort of have two separate lists of favourite heroes in my head. One is book boyfriends, and one is just heroes--male leads whose romantic relationship, or lack thereof, has no effect on my love for them. Dante would be on the latter, along with heroes like Ender and Eragon. But make no mistake, I am most certainly swooning and drooling ALL OVER his daddy. (At least, this is how I imagine him in my head)

I love Lucien and I look forward to seeing him protect his son further, now that Leviathon has awakened. I also want to learn more about Annie's baby. That wasn't really addressed at all in this book. Is Annie the only one who knows who the father is? As well as the father. He seemed to have figured it out real quick. Things could get interesting. But please, don't focus the next book on kidnappings and failed rescue attempts! It took all of this book for Heather to track down Dante after he was kidnapped at the end of the last one. It was so frustrating!

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