Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Review: Hunt the Darkness

Hunt the Darkness Hunt the Darkness by Stephanie Rowe
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Admittedly, I’ve jumped around in this series quite a bit. That being said, I was able to join this storyline, already in progress, without any issues. It was filled with demons, warriors, and a time-crossing love story.

Vlad is a jerk. Sure, he spends his time saving kids from whatever they get themselves into, but he is still mostly unhappy with life. It all stems from his childhood, where he feels he should have been able to save the love of his life from being killed by demons. Or so he thought. Turns out, Sophie actually survived falling into the demon world, although she has suppressed all memory of it. She’s made her own way in this horrible world, developing a magical defense against the demons who look to use her. She’s also found a calling and spends all her time trying to rescue women from their demon lovers.

Rescuing Sophie turns out to be exactly the motivation that Vlad needed to apologize to the group of warriors he screwed over in recent history. As they are the only ones that can help him find demons, he reluctantly teams up with Gabe, one of the last remaining warriors. It’s clear that this is a turning point for them, and it was interesting to watch the dynamics both between Gabe and his team and Gabe and Vlad (his new team). Of course, we also go to watch Gabe fight (a little) the fated bond that begins to develop soon after arriving and meeting Sophie’s BFF.

All in all, this book had all the key elements of an epic paranormal romance. There was even a happy ending that seemed to satisfy just about everyone involved (and there were lots of people involved). Reading this book made me want to go back and fill in the gaps. With writing like this, how could you not?

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Review: Lonesome Paladin

Lonesome Paladin Lonesome Paladin by S.M. Reine
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wow, these spinoff books just keep me constantly guessing. While I’ve read all the other books in this world, the characters continue to surprise me.

If this is your introduction to this author’s wonderful world, welcome! There is a *a lot* going on, so you’d better be prepared for a fast-paced, wild and crazy ride! First off, we’ve got the main players. In this instance, we bounce around between 3-ish characters: Lincoln (a surly, racist, ex-boyfriend to a key player in some events leading up to this time), Cesar (a womanizing ex-witch with family in high places), and Sophie (an unknown entity who knows way more than she should about almost everything). The true guide in this story is Lincoln (unfortunately, because he’s a jerk), but I definitely wanted more Cesar (especially after that ending!!!).

Lincoln finds himself with no real purpose in life. Like most people, the “void” changed him and left him with nowhere to go. He has no living connections left, is constantly starting fights, and is riddled with guilt over his long-ago actions while possessed. As a true gift, he suddenly finds himself embroiled in OPA drama of the fae kind. By showing up in some database as having a rather unique history, he is tasked with getting Cesar to his sister in the Middle Worlds.

Here’s where it gets crazy (or more crazy). There’s all sorts of unexplainable magical things in the Middle Worlds and most of them try to kill Lincoln, Cesar, and their new companion, Sophie. Throw in some killer unicorns and I’m absolutely hooked. While I may not want to live inside Lincoln’s head, I’m very interested in where he might end up. As this was just the first of what I’m sure will be many adventures (or religious quests?), I can’t wait to see what happens next!

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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Review: What to Expect When Your Demon Slayer is Expecting

What to Expect When Your Demon Slayer is Expecting What to Expect When Your Demon Slayer is Expecting by Angie Fox
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

These books are just adorable and super fun! I find that once I start reading, I absolutely cannot stop. Lizzie and Dimitri are the best!

As the title already gives away, this book deal with the ups and downs of being both a demon slayer and a soon-to-be-mom. Lizzie is just going about her “normal” life (which is always anything but normal) when her mom is suddenly taken ill. Of course, nothing is easy in the demon slaying world, so there are paranormal elements at play. Remember the spirit from the previous adventure? Even if you don’t, you will be reintroduced to him intimately in this book. Who else would to go to when you are tasked with an impossible possession problem?

On top of the twisty turny world of solving this mystery, we also get the stellar and always entertaining characters that live in Lizzie’s universe. There wasn’t a single thing I would change about all the insanity jammed into this book. We even manage to get a healthy dose of the romantic world of Lizzie and Dimitri. Oh, and a dragon, and a talking dog! What more could you want?

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Review: Masked Desire

Masked Desire Masked Desire by Alana Delacroix
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While I’ve read the rest of the books in this series, I think you can definitely pick this up as standalone and enjoy the wild ride it takes you on! It has so many twists and turns that I found myself eagerly flipping through.

Michaela is a supernatural with the ability to take on “masks” which change both her appearance and personality at will. On top of being the security head for one of the least trusted supernatural races, she also sits on a council designed to be secretly in charge of the supernatural community. It’s on this council that she ends up being exposed to a gruesome murder in her office. Obviously tasked with finding the killer, but with the suspicion of the victim being in her office, she gets saddled with a babysitter in the form of an exiled fae.

Cormac has a lot of hidden agendas, but the primary goal he had when offering to “watch” Michaela was to find a way to obtain the victim’s forest and use it to get back in the fae queen’s good graces. All of that rapidly takes a back seat when he finds himself uncontrollably drawn to Michaela. These two definitely did not have an easy road (trust issues abound) but when they finally tumble into a relationship it is awesome! If you’re looking for a truly unique world, a romance, and a murder mystery all rolled into one book – this is definitely the book for you.

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Friday, April 13, 2018

Review: Immortally Yours

Immortally Yours Immortally Yours by Lynsay Sands
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This wasn’t necessarily my favorite of the stories in this series, but I have a hard time articulating exactly why I didn’t jump into reading it at every chance. Sure, it started with the narrator in this audible version, who was not the best, but I just never really found myself rooting for these two. Scotty made it difficult to love him.

Beth is an independent woman who has found her calling as a rogue hunter. She bounces about and has had what can be simplified as a “hard life” (complete with forcibly being turned and lots and lots of rape), but her life is her own. This, apparently, really really bothers Scotty. He knows that she is his life mate from soon after he met her. He, however, keeps this a secret because he wants her to “heal” and live her new immortal life. True, he found her in piles of blood and gore, with some serious trauma, but maybe this is where my utter dislike of him comes from. Either way, he sticks someone to watch her and goes about his own business.

When Beth decided to become a rogue hunter, Scotty resurfaced to speak out against her, and thus began her belief that he hated her. Nice, right? Beth, however, did not just stew. She became an excellent rogue hunter and, ultimately, did find a way to reconcile her past with her present. Now that she’s in a good place, Scotty was finally “free” to approach their life mate status in an honest way. In my opinion, it’s way too late. That doesn’t stop him from perpetually racing in to try to save her. A series of coincidental events put her in almost constant danger throughout the book, made worse by the fact that most of the hunters are still looking for the missing evil doctor.

The culmination of the book was a mystery being solved in an unexpected way, but I was seriously let down by the HEA. Sure, these two end up happy and together but it just seemed to reek of an almost abusive relationship – him still insisting that erasing her memory is better for her no matter her insistence otherwise. Meh.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Review: The Book of Secrets

The Book of Secrets The Book of Secrets by Melissa McShane
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wow – this book was unexpected!

I picked this book up relatively blind to the story or any of the details and just dove right in. What a fun and fantastic world! I was thoroughly engaged from start to finish and sad to see it end. Please tell me there’s more?

Helena is a woman adrift in the world. She’s not sure what she actually wants to do with her life, other than find a job to kill some time and make some money. A want ad has her ending up interviewing for a job at a strangely disorganized book store with a very odd boss. Things don’t really stay that way for too long, though. Helena is rapidly sucked into a world filled with magic, murder, mystery, and an increasing amount of responsibility. Surprisingly, rather than finding herself shying away from her newfound custodianship, she really steps up to the plate.

Aside from the murder mystery aspect of this story, I found myself really enjoying the new magical world that both the reader and Helena have to learn about. There’s different magical factions, lots of people who may or may not be bad guys, aliens (kind-of), and a book store that I am just absolutely in love with. Who knew that a setting could become such a critical character? I can’t say enough good things about this book. Assuming we get some quick follow-up in the series, it will definitely be on of my “must read” list.

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Saturday, April 7, 2018

Review: High Voltage

High Voltage High Voltage by Karen Marie Moning
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I will say one thing for KMM - she keeps me guessing. I think I've been so beaten down by cliffhangers and frustrating endings that when things seem to end happily, I feel... unsatisfied? I'm a little concerned that I've suffered some irreparable trauma from the Fever series. I also have no clue how I actually feel about this book. It is definitely the start of a new set of books but... where do we go from here?

So, remember Dani and Ryodan? Ball of sexual frustration? Well we start the book with them separating for a while (what?!) leaving Dani as the lone superhero left to take care of Dublin. She's doing a great job, seeing the "invisible" members of the city, but even superheroes need friends. With everyone off on their own adventure, this leaves Dani to ponder the ever-growing black hand issue in her own head. She's also tied her hands by agreeing to not attack Fae while Mac gets her bearings. In a blatant plot device, something ends up bringing Ryodan and his gang back and then all hell breaks loose. There's high voltage (yeah, there is) and a surprising reveal. There's even an ending that feels sort of... final? I guess we end up hopping around to give everyone a happy ending? Do all the nine end up getting one? I don't know what I want to happen anymore...

The somewhat side story in this tale is the Kat/Cruce reveal and handling the fallout from that. I honestly could have done without this, but maybe it will end up going somewhere cool in the future books? Who knows - I certainly don't think KMM knows right now. It was nice to have a "visit" from Mac, but she was definitely missing in this book. While it was easy to focus on Dani and Ryodan's tale, what's a Fever book without some Mac and Barrons?

So, yeah, overall this was a good book? I don't know what I was expecting but it wasn't this. There was even some pervy business thrown in that brings me back to the start of Dani's story. Oh, and as a side gripe - how about we format kindle books properly so they end at 100% instead of a surprise at <90%?

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