Sunday, September 24, 2023

The Hob and Hound Pub

The Hob and Hound Pub (Sam Quinn, #4)The Hob and Hound Pub by Seana Kelly
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was almost loathe to read this one after the wonderful bow they tied around Sam & Clive’s HEA, but there’s always more work to be done in Sam’s world.

Clive probably puts it best here when he details just how many horrible things happen to Sam in a short period of time, all because of fae meddling. That being said, this is definitely filled with mayhem. There is really a bit of everything from jealous ex’s, to dwarf attacks, and petty dragon species-ism that comes at Sam from all angles. It starts simple enough with Sam and Clive on their honeymoon. Sightseeing, shopping, eating (or Sam eating) and all the usual romantic elements of a honeymoon. Unfortunately for these two, they are actually on their way to fight this book’s big bad. Things tend to go back for anyone they go up against, but it’s certainly not without bumps and bruises for Sam and Clive (mostly Sam).

In this book we really see Sam get into her power. She is definitely an equal, if not better in a lot of ways, to Clive. Clive would be dead a few times over without Sam’s daytime assistance and paranoia. So, back to the big bad here - turns out that this insane vampire has teamed up with some evil fae so that means oodles of backstabbing and politics. There is also some weird random family stuff, connections to a yet unmentioned twin back home, Clive’s history, and somehow… 2 famous authors.

I had a lot of fun with this book, and while it has lots of meandering and loose ends, I forgave it for the great ending here. I’m happy with where Clive and Sam end up, too, which makes me even happier that there is a future book to dive right into!

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Friday, September 22, 2023

I’ll Be Slaying You

I'll Be Slaying You (Night Watch, #2)I'll Be Slaying You by Cynthia Eden
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

After the last book, I figured we’d be working our way through Night Watch, pairing folks up. That being said, Dee’s story definitely takes a big and unexpected turn.

This story, as I said, is about Dee. She’s got a traumatic history with paranormals, as most of the Night Watch does. For her, she lost her family to a vampire attack that set her on this path. Saved from the streets from the head of Night Watch, she’s got a lot invested here. While on the hunt for the usual, she ends up meeting Simon. Simon has also got a lot invested in hunting, but there are oodles of secrets there.

Without spoiling the big twists and turns that this book takes you on, it’s a wild ride. These two are reluctant partners turned sizzling smutty partners. While I did struggle to like Dee a lot of the time, this was a surprising story that had me engaged throughout. Since the series just has 3 books, I’m definitely in for the “long haul” here. Can’t wait to see where we end up with our ornery demon!

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Saturday, September 16, 2023

Eternal Hunter

Eternal Hunter (Night Watch, #1)Eternal Hunter by Cynthia Eden
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In a random lull in my reading list I stumbled upon this Night Watch series from an author I’ve enjoyed in the past. Trusting her, I dove right in!

This book is the first in a series that introduces us to a paranormal bounty hunter organization, Night Watch. Jude is a shifter employed by the agency, and he always gets his prey. Erin is a DA with a secret that has driven her from her home. In this new town, she thought she’d get to start over, but the “presents” from her stalker started showing up again.

When Jude is first assigned to Erin, it’s a chore but their attraction sizzles from the start. This mystery had a lot of twists and turns, but the best part was really the smutty goodness between these two. It was good to watch Erin let her guard down and truly become who she was meant to be. They work together to catch the bad guy, save some folks (including each other) and get their nice HEA.

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The Wicche Glass Tavern

The Wicche Glass Tavern (Sam Quinn #3)The Wicche Glass Tavern by Seana Kelly
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve got to admit, even after taking a brief break in the series, it sucks you back in *immediately* and it feels like you never left. I’m not sure you can start here, so recommend going back to the beginning if for some reason you want to begin here.

Sam is going through all sorts of stuff in this book. We still have her evil relative, hellbent on hunting her down through whatever means necessary (except, you know, killing her directly, because of the curse). We’ve also got the fact that all of Clive’s vampires (or most) hate Sam because she’s about to “put a ring on it.” Lastly, Sam has had very little training in her powers, so she’s desperately trying to find a way to use her necromancer abilities without, ya know, going blind. Throw all this in the barrel that is Sam’s life, give it a shake, and throw in the fact that she never learned to drive and you’ve got this fun story.

The highlights of this and any of this series is definitely Sam and Clive. They are adorable and really balance one another out. It was so very satisfying that we get a nice HEA here. The path they take to get there? That’s another story. It’s even got bombs involved! So much damage (both literal and emotional) gets thrown around here that it’s amazing we get any sort of happy wrap-up. This installment definitely tied up some loose ends, allowed Sam to really progress as a person and a witch, and introduced even more craziness that will no doubt show up in future books to exact payment. Here’s to many more!

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Thursday, September 7, 2023

Witches Get Stuff Done

Witches Get Stuff Done (Starfall, #1)Witches Get Stuff Done by Molly Harper
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I love Molly Harper so jumped at the chance to read a new series from her. There are the fun paranormal elements I love in some of her other books, but this is decidedly more serious and ghostly.

Riley has been a bit adrift in life. She has jumped from one job to the next without much thought and her family life is not really so great either. When a “long lost Aunt” made contact with her, offering to connect after her mother’s death, she ended up verifying (because she’s not dumb) then jumped on a ferry to a rather secluded and quaint island. The island, Starfall, is filled with all sorts of characters. Unfortunately for Riley, though, her aunt is not one of them anymore. Rather quickly, Riley becomes caretaker for a mysterious house filled with all sorts of paranormal craziness.

Edison is hiding from the world on this same island, but his domain is the library. These two meet pretty terribly, then again even worse, but it definitely evolves into friendship with some sizzle. He, coupled with some standout locals end up making Riley’s little gang of supporters. Too bad for them, it does come with peril and oodles of ghosts. As the start of a series, this builds a rich and interesting world I want to learn more about. I didn’t even make a good guess at the mystery and whodunit! Great work hooking me on yet another series!

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The Immortal Tailor

The Immortal Tailor (The Immortal Tailor, Book #1)The Immortal Tailor by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I don’t even know how to adequately describe/warn you for this book. If you have had no exposure to the gods books that relate to this world, you are in for an insane time. The level of oddity in the reigning gods is above and beyond anything that pops into your head. To give an example: the incident that requires the gods to reach out to Damien (the immortal tailor) involve a unicorn and a hellhound getting frisky.

So, back to the story - the immortal tailor in question is Damien and he is long-lived but also suffers a curse that means he is alone forever. When tasked with looking into a sex fairy sighting, he meets Sky, an ex-teacher turned online reporter who was on her path to stardom when she was attacked. Turns out that announcing the existence of supernaturals doesn’t help your online career as a serious journalist. When Damien and Sky meet, he does his bets to remain unattached, but his curse ends up presenting in a terrible way that truly shocked me. Usually books like this have a script of sorts so when they blew it up completely I was fascinated. What would happen now?

Well, just about everything you can imagine happens. There’s demon dogs, shifters at music festivals, yucky baking, matchmaking and so much more! This book manages to tie up some loose ends, but leaves a pretty big cliffhanger which only makes me that much more desperate for book 2. Who knew you could end up rooting for the ornery tailor by the end?

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Dirty Lying Dragons

Dirty Lying Dragons (The Enchanted Fates, #2)Dirty Lying Dragons by Sabrina Blackburry
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a fantastic sequel to the first of the series! I don’t think you even need to have read the first book in order to enjoy this one. It almost reads like its own series of books, with so much jammed in!

Dani is a malfunctioning witch. She’s always had trouble with spells and has a bit of baggage where witchcraft is concerned. As a lone witch, she ends up being hunted down by wolf shifters when an evil vampire gets it in his head to collect witches without a coven. On the run, magic malfunctioning, Dani ends up appearing in Ryker’s sanctuary far, far away.

Ryker has his own secrets and baggage but can’t seem to pass up helping the lost witch. They end up with a bit of a truce that grows into a sizzling chemistry neither acts upon. At a pivotal moment, though, trust is formed and it seems inevitable that these two will wind up together. As I said, this is almost like 2 books in one because we have a big culmination about mid-way through the story that then makes the last half that much higher stakes. There is romance, action, oodles of paranormals, and, yes, a HEA all rolled into one book I’d definitely recommend.

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Saturday, September 2, 2023

Working for the Devil

Working for the Devil (Dante Valentine, #1)Working for the Devil by Lilith Saintcrow
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

When I hit a reading lull I went through my “to-read” list on GoodReads and found this one with generally high ratings. Admittedly, I should have read the description closer, or the genres, because this level of tech and futuristic/post-apocalyptic is usually not my typical reading space. That being said, I’m sure if someone was a big fan of those, this would be more enjoyable.

Danny is a magically gifted, so much so that Lucifer sends Jaf, one of his soldiers, to fetch her and give her an assignment. It turns out that this assignment also gives her the chance to get revenge on the person who murdered her friend and probably would have killed her, too. Danny fights all the help offered to her along the way, which is frustrating, but it did offer a unique way to learn about her world.

The world building is great and was very interesting, but this, as the first book in a series, has some heavy lifting to do. There’s a lot of magical species, politics, new geography and tech to learn in a short span of time, and we also need to solve a case. For that tall order, it somehow manages to wrap it up without a big cliffhanger, and instead ends in a bit of a bummer. I probably won’t continue in the series and instead will switch back to what I tend to enjoy more, especially with the way things were left in this one.

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