Cut & Run: Ball & Chain

Ball & Chain

Ball & Chain

Home from their unexpected deployment, the former members of Marine Force Recon team Sidewinder rejoin their loved ones and try to pick up the pieces of the lives they were forced to leave behind. Ty Grady comes home to Zane Garrett, only to find that everything around him has changed–even the man he went to war with. He barely has time to adjust before his brother, Deuce, asks Ty to be his best man. But that isn’t all Deuce asks Ty to do, and Ty must call for backup to deal with the business issues of Deuce’s future father-in-law.

Nick O’Flaherty and Kelly Abbot join Ty and Zane at the wedding on an island in Scotland, thinking they’re there to assuage Deuce’s paranoia. But when bodies start dropping and boats start sinking, the four men get more involved with the festivities than they’d ever planned to.

With the clock ticking and the killer just as stuck on the isolated island as they are, Ty and Zane must navigate a veritable minefield of family, friends, and foes to stop the whole island from being destroyed.

I just want to start this review, or possibly rant, with the following: this is entirely my opinion. And if you haven’t read Ball & Chain yet, you should steer clear. There will be spoilers.

Right, so we basically start off six months or so after the heart wrenching end of Touch & Geaux. Zane and Kelly are waiting for their boys to get home. We have an emotional reunion between Ty and Zane, and the rest of the Sidewinder guys. It’s great. Everyone skips home and everything is dandy. Life goes on, until one day Deuce phones Ty asking him to be the best man at Deuce’s wedding, which is going to be held in Scotland. Also, would Ty mind bringing one of his Recon buddies to double up as security, too? This person can even bring a date. Enter Nick and Kelly. They head on over to Scotland, and there things start to go pear shaped as they inevitably tend to when the boys embark on the dreaded V-word.

I’m not going to go into a whole lot of detail, but that’s the gist of it. When I finished this book, I was confused. I didn’t really know how to feel about it. But the more I think about it, the more let down I feel. This book, for me, was indisputably the weakest book in the series. I don’t know what the effing hell happened. I really need to vent here, so I’m just going to go ahead and spill my guts. First thing that pissed me off? The reunion sex, or rather the glaring lack thereof. I know that sounds terribly superficial, but I felt cheated. Ty and Zane haven’t seen each other for months, and there’s no reunion sex??? And then, when we did get some sexy time, it was intruded upon by Nick and Kelly shouting through the walls. I’ll talk about those two in a minute. Secondly, when the shit started to fly, it did so in such a way that I just found myself shaking my head. I know that in most of the Cut & Run books, the guys run into situations that are a little out there. And that’s totally fine. But this time went a step too far. It was just so far-fetched. And chaotic. People were running around all over the place, but it didn’t really feel like anything was really happening. Now, on to Nick and Kelly. I just want it to be known that I like Nick and Kelly. I’m really looking forward to more of their story. In their books. Honest to God, it felt like I was reading a Sidewinder novel. I mean, this is Ty and Zane’s second last book. I needed them to have more page time than they did. As someone I was talking to on Twitter pointed out, it felt like they were supporting characters in their own bloody book. The huge issues that caused so much friggin’ angst in the last book were barely touched on. I mean, Ty asked Zane to marry him, for Pete’s sake. Surely before you take that much anticipated leap, you should talk some stuff out? And get to know each other again? You haven’t seen one another for nearly half a year! Related to those NOLA issues, and I swear to God I’ll stop after this, was Nick’s beef with Ty. I didn’t get it. It felt… a little forced. I understand why Nick was upset, but there didn’t seem to be any build up to it. One minute Nick was chilled, and the next Nick was all pissy.

I’m sorry that this turned into a rant. But I just needed to get it out there. This isn’t to say that there weren’t any good points because there were. I just probably won’t remember them in the long run…

Advertisements

Holy Wow Wednesday: Long Time Gone

I believe that I mentioned in my review of Long Time Gone, book 2 in the Hell or High Water series by SE Jakes, that this book was scorching. And I wasn’t lying. Even though I last read this book in October, those sex scenes made a lasting impression. Let me just give you a snippet. And you’re in for a treat because this is reunion sex.

“Prophet?”

Tommy? “Tom?” Prophet couldn’t see much, but he knew that drawl. Recognized the feel of the man’s hands as they touched Prophet’s cheeks, traced them with fingertips… Tom reading him like Braille. As the rain washed over them, the smell of grass and earth and floral spice filled the air. His skin tingled from the electrical currents carried on the storm, and his entire body was in a state of heightened awareness that was almost painful.

He wanted to ask what the hell Tom was doing here, why he’d risked everything–including his job at EE–to come here. Wanted to ask if Tom had somehow known he’d be here. But he didn’t.

And he also didn’t know how he even heard the man over the dull roar of the wind, but he did, heard Tom whisper, “Yes,” against his cheek in answer to his unasked questions and fuck, that could mean so many damn things.

Too many to give a shit about parsing, and in the wet, hot darkness, Prophet’s mouth found Tommy’s instead.

They both groaned into that first kiss. Four months and more of longing released in a frantic rush that started out fast and rolled into something more, faster than the gathering storm and threatening to do far more damage.

And Prophet didn’t give a damn, wasn’t able to stop himself from rutting against Tom, the friction of the fabric between them and Tommy’s hardness sending shockwaves through his system.

And he was finally alive again. Holding onto his lifeline in the flesh, knowing that it had almost been too late. If he hadn’t read those emails… Another day, another hour and he would’ve been buried so far underground he would never have seen daylight again. 

He brushed that thought away for what was real right now–Tom’s hands in his hair, keeping him close. Tom’s thighs spread for him, heavy boots landing on his ass and locking around his lower back so the heels dug in, spurring him to rut harder. Tom, holding him in place from that submissive position. And Prophet was fucking Tom’s mouth with his tongue, the way he wanted to fuck Tom. The way he wanted Tommy to fuck him. Tom was matching him kiss for kiss as they alternated between wet and messy, ferocious to lingering, lip-biting to tongue-sucking.

Everything else fell away but Tom. The wet, stinging downpour, the wind, the mud… the danger, were all merely physical barriers to overcome. The easy shit.

The fact that Tom was in his arms again meant they’d already dug into the hard shit.

He pulled back from the kissing to bite Tom’s neck. Tom hissed, bucked his pelvis up, and a low shudder ran through Prophet. And then he made the mistake of opening his eyes and realized he couldn’t see. The electricity had cut out, and it was too damned dark.

He could still feel Tom under him, but that wasn’t enough. He started to count to thirty, because that’s when the generator would kick on. Panic shook him harder than lust, panic leftover from earlier. Then Tom’s hand slid into his pants, along his bare ass, trailing a finger between his cheeks and pressed against the tightened muscles of his hole.

“Mine,” Tom growled against his ear and Prophet whimpered–fucking whimpered–as Tom kept his finger in place, more pressure than an attempt to gain entrance. He had to know Prophet was too goddamned tense for that, but that started to bleed away when Tom said, “Mine,” again.

“Yeah. Yours,” he agreed, blinked against the rain, seeing shadows as his eyes adjusted, and just let himself feel Tom’s hands anchoring him.

It didn’t matter what happened in the morning, in an hour… even in ten minutes. It mattered that Tom was going to make him come in his pants, especially when Tom’s finger pushed inside him and the lights flickered back on.

“Proph,” Tom moaned as Prophet dug in and writhed with zero control. Tommy gripped his shoulder tightly, pulling Prophet into him. Prophet buried his face against Tommy’s neck and knew what Tommy’s face would look like–almost angry that Prophet had gotten to him so easily.

God, he wanted to see that.

Long Time Gone: 680 of 3704

 And lucky for us dirty little pervs, there’s even more after this. But you’ll have to buy the book here to see what happens next. Have an awesome week, everybody!

 

Book of the Month: February

I’ve only just started this series, but I can already tell it’s going to be a favourite. Everything about J.D Robb’s In Death series so far has just blown me away. While I gave both Naked in Death and Glory in Death 5 star reviews, February’s book of the month is going to be Naked in Death. I was so completely absorbed in the happenings of this book, I found it virtually impossible to put down. I know that if you give it a try, you’ll feel the same.

So here is an excerpt. Eve’s had a really rough day and she’s in a dingy bar, hoping to drown her sorrows.

“This doesn’t seem quite your den of iniquity, Lieutenant.”

Eve opened her eyes and stared up at Roarke. “Every time I turn around.”

He sat across from her. The table was small enough that their knees bumped. His way of adjusting was to slide his thighs against hers. “You called me, remember, and you’d left this address when you logged out,”

“I wanted an appointment, not a drinking buddy.”

He glanced at the drink on the table, leaned over to take a sniff. “You’re not going to get one with that poison.”

“This joint doesn’t run to fine wine and aged scotch.”

 He laid a hand over hers for the simple purpose of watching her scowl and jerk away.”Why don’t we go somewhere that does?”

“I’m in a pisser of a mood, Roarke. Give me an appointment, at your convenience, then take off.”

“An appointment for what?” The singer caught his attention. He cocked a brow, watching her eyes roll and gesture. “Unless she’s having some sort of seizure, I believe the vocalist is signaling you.”

Resigned, Eve glanced over, shook her head. “She’s a friend of mine.” She shook her head emphatically when Mavis grinned and turned both thumbs up. “She thinks I got lucky.”

“You did.” Roarke picked the drink up and set it on an adjoining table where greedy hands fought over it. “I just saved your life.”

“Goddamn it–“

“If you want to get drunk, Eve, at least do it with something that will leave you with most of your stomach lining. He scanned the menu, winced. “Which means nothing that can be purchased here.” He took her hand as he rose. “”Come on.”

“I’m fine right here.”

All patience, he bent down and until his face was close to hers. “What you are is hoping to get drunk enough so that you can take a few punches at someone without worrying about the consequences. With me, you don’t have to get drunk, you don’t have to worry. You can take all the punches you want.”

“Why?”

“Because you have something sad in your eyes. And it gets to me.” While she was dealing with the surprise of that statement, he hauled her to her feet and toward the door.

“I’m going home,” she decided. 

“No, you’re not.”

“Listen, pal–“

That was as far as she got before her back was shoved against the wall and his mouth crushed hard on hers. She didn’t fight. The wind had been knocked out of her by the suddenness, and the rage under it, and the shock of need that slammed into her like a fist.

“It was quick, seconds only, before her mouth was free. “Stop it,” she demanded, and hated that her voice was only a shaky whisper.

“Whatever you think,” he began, struggling for his own composure, “there are times you need someone. Right now, it’s me.” Impatience shimmering around him, he pulled her outside. “Where’s your car?”

Naked in Death: pg 169-171

Hell or High Water: Long Time Gone

Long Time Gone

Long Time Gone

Soldier of fortune, Prophet Andrews always worked alone–until Tom Boudreaux became his partner. But when Tom walked away three months ago, ostensibly to keep Prophet safe, Prophet learnt the true meaning of being alone. Everyone knows that Prophet, a Navy SEAL turned CIA spook turned mercenary, can look after himself. Which means he must’ve driven his lover away.

Even with half a world between them, Prophet can’t get the man out of his head. Maybe that’s why he’s in New Orleans in the middle of a hurricane, protecting Tom’s aunt. But the only looter around is Tom, bursting back into Prophet’s life. It turns out that Prophet has been stuck in Tom’s head–and heart–too.

Their explosive reunion gets even hotter when Tom is arrested for murder. As they fight to clear his name, they delve deep into his past, finding enemies among everyone they meet. Staying alive in such a dangerous world is enough, but they soon discover that fighting to stay together is the most difficult thing they’ve ever done. 

I read this book ages ago, pretty much when it first came out, and for some reason I’m only talking about it now. I’m telling you this because I might be a little fuzzy on the details, so I apologise in advance.

When we last saw our boys, Tommy had pulled that whole I’m-staying-away-from-you-for-your-own-good thing. And it is only because I adore Tommy that I didn’t want to punch him in the mouth.Unfortunately for Tommy, though, Prophet didn’t really share my sentiments and he went off the radar. No one has any idea where he is, or what he’s doing. And Tommy’s a little worried. Every night he sends Prophet an email. And every morning he wakes up, hoping for a response. Except… Prophet never replies. Undeterred, Tommy keeps on. And one day, Tommy mentions in one of his innumerable messages, Tommy mentions his concerns for his aunt living in New Orleans, a city once again on the verge of another hurricane.

Prophet has been having a bit of a rough time. He didn’t expect getting kicked to the curb to hurt so much. He didn’t expect it to be so difficult to move on. He’s on the brink of going so deep undercover that no one will find him. And then something makes him check his email. And then he starts to read. And against his better judgement, he then heads down to New Orleans. And this is where our two boys reunite.

This book made me happy. It was serious, but not so angsty that I wanted to jump in my pool and then forget how to swim. Tommy and Prophet had their issues–honesty being a big one–but they managed to work through a lot of it. And let me tell you one thing: I do not mind them fighting if SE Jakes keeps writing those steamy make up scenes. My God, those things are hotBut beyond the make up sex and the reunion sex and the angry sex was the fact that we got to know Tommy and Prophet a little better. Prophet opened up a little more to Tommy. He spent a lot less time hiding his feelings from both himself and his partner. Tommy was the star of this book, for me. We learnt more about his past and why he’s not so keen on his family. Lets just say, the guy has some daddy issues, and who can blame him? I loved how Prophet stood up for him. It was really sweet and it made me happy and wish for tender sex. What? I can’t help it, Jakes writes some insane love scenes. One other thing I want to mention is Cillian. God, that guy worked on my nerves. Not because he’s a bad character or whatever, but because he wouldn’t stop flirting with Prophet. It’s the crazy fangirl in me, but I get oddly territorial on behalf of fictional characters when other people hit on them. I kinda wanna be like this:

I really think I love this series. It has it’s emotionally traumatising moments, but they don’t last too long. And, happily, Long Time Gone didn’t end with a huge honking cliffhanger. Thank God for small mercies. The last one almost did me in.

Holy Wow Wednesday: Ink – It’s My New Obscession

I know that tattoos can be something of a controversial issue. Some people love them, while others apparently loathe them. I can see their point, to an extent. I have seen some seriously dodgy tattoos, and the words why would you do that to yourself? have run through my mind a time or two. But when a tattoo’s done right? There is honestly nothing sexier.

tumblr_n030evJDtk1qhlt4ko1_500

tumblr_n17fot3i5g1rywz5po1_500

tumblr_n06rn1KqM31smb63lo1_500

tumblr_n00twaiWJx1qidqojo1_500

tumblr_n0ophgZF1d1ruyjmfo1_500

tumblr_n0oi5v3zKn1sumnuco1_500

tumblr_n0hw67bK081qidqojo1_500

tumblr_mzy45fYaB31qlgz8po4_500

The delicious Alex Minsky

tumblr_mzewmpp51T1seotwlo1_500

I left the best for last with this guy. The nipple rings make my knees weak...

I saved the best for last with this guy. The nipple rings make my knees weak…

And these lovely gentlemen are why, for the most part, I absolutely adore tattoos. I just want to lick them.

Fighting Destiny: Born to Darkness

Born to Darkness

Born to Darkness

Dishonorably discharged, former Navy SEAL Shane Laughlin is down to his last ten bucks when he finally finds work as a test subject at the Obermeyer Institute, a little-known and believed-to-be-fringe scientific research facility. When he enters the OI compound, he is plunged into a strange world where seemingly mild-mannered scientists–including women half his size–can kick his highly skilled ass.

Shane soon discovers that there are certain individuals who possess the unique ability to access untapped regions of the brain with extraordinary results–including telekinesis, super strength, and reversal of the aging process. Known as “Greater-Thans”, this rare breed is recruited by OI, where they are rigorously trained using ancient techniques to cultivate their powers and wield them responsibly.

But in depths of America’s second Great Depression, where the divide between the haves and have-nots has grown even wider, those who are rich–and reckless–enough have a quick, seductive alternative: Destiny, a highly addictive designer drug that can make anyone a Greater-Than, with the power of eternal youth. The sinister cartel known as The Organization has begun mass-producing Destiny, and the demand is growing. But few realize the drug’s true danger, and fewer still know the dirty secret of Destiny’s crucial ingredient.

Michelle “Mac” Mackenzie knows the ugly truth. And as one of the Obermeyer Institute’s crack team of operatives, she’s determined to end the scourge of Destiny. But her kick-ass attitude gets knocked for a loop when she discovers one of the new test subjects is the same smoldering stranger who rocked her world in a one-night stand. And although Shane quickly discovers he isn’t a Greater-Than like Mac, as an ex-Seal, he’s got talents of his own. But Mac’s got powerful reasons to keep her distance from Shane–and reasons to want him close. She’s used to risking her life, but now she faces risking her heart in the ultimate war on drugs.

Have you ever read a book where you just weren’t sure what to think about it once you were done? That’s how I felt with this one. There were bits that I liked and bits that… I really didn’t. And, dammit, I wanted to like this book!

Born to Darkness is the first book by Suzanne Brockmann that I’ve read. I was quite keen on the premise of the book, but I felt that it fell a little short. Let me start with the book’s format. Born to Darkness didn’t focus on one main couple, but on three. This was good because the “main” couple bugged the hell out of me. More on that later. Next is the whole universe that Brockmann had set up. This is an America of the future (don’t know how far into the future because I don’t believe that the year was ever mentioned), and it is a very, very bleak future indeed. Money is tight, people in general are so apathetic it’s scary, and rich yahoos take drugs that make both superhuman and crazy. There are also people with incredible powers, who come by their superhuman-ness naturally. Some of these people work for the Obermeyer Institute in an effort to not only train those who’ve just discovered their powers, but to get Destiny off the street. The Obermeyer Institute is a safe place for those born with extra super special powers, a place where tests are carried out and a place where Greater-Thans, without somewhere to live, can stay. Sounds good, right?

But there were bits that just felt a bit iffy for me. The bad guys were sort of… obvious bad guys. Because all bad guys are hideously disfigured, because how else will you know how to avoid them? And the three main couples, who I’ll talk about more in just a sec, seemed to just fall in love in the space of less than a week. Upon reflection, all the couples bugged me in some way and let me tell you why. Mac and Shane were Born of Darkness’s main focus. Mac has issues, and fair enough. She’s got this huge wall around her and she very rarely lets anyone too close. And because of her unusual… talents, she doesn’t believe that anyone will want her of their own free will. Shane and Mac had a thing, which Mac believes was as a result of her talent. Shane, after having the situation explained to him, doesn’t much care. He wants Mac. He believes that there’s a connection, despite the fact that Mac treats him like a yo-yo with her “go away, no come back!” routine. Very irritating. The next couple is Elliot and Stephen. I honestly felt that they declared the “I-love-yous” far too quickly. And I thought that Brockmann could have gone deeper with their relationship. Their issues and stuff seemed to be glossed over. The last couple were Dr Joseph Back and Anna Taylor. Theirs was the relationship I was most invested in and, by the end of the book, it was left up in the air.

There was also a little short story at the end of the book, Shane’s Last Stand. I’ll be honest, it didn’t do anything for me. It basically covered the how and why of Shane’s dishonourable discharge. It’s only about five chapters long, so it’s a really short read.

So, in all, this is not a book that’s going to make it onto my top ten list. Born of Darkness definitely had it’s good bits, but I just felt that something was missing. I’ll probably read the next book in the series (if one ever comes out; it’s a 2012 release and I haven’t seen any mention of a sequel) if only to see what the hell’s going to happen with Anna and Bach.

Midnight Breeds: Shades of Midnight

Shades of Midnight

Shades of Midnight

In a frozen wilderness steeped in darkness, the lines between good and evil, lover and enemy, are never black or white but drawn in Shades of Midnight…

Something inhuman is stalking the frigid Alaskan wilds, leaving unspeakable carnage in its wake. For bush pilot Alexandra Maguire, the killings stir memories of a horrific event she witnessed as a child and evoke in her the inexplicable sense of otherness she has long felt but never fully understood… until a darkly seductive stranger with secrets of his own enters her world.

Sent from Boston on a mission to investigate the savage attacks and stop the slaughter, vampire warrior Kade has his own reasons for returning to the frigid, forbidding place of his birth. Haunted by a secret shame, Kade soon realizes the stunning truth of the threat he faces–a threat that will jeopardize the fragile bond he has formed with the courageous, determined young woman who arouses his deepest passions and most primal hungers. But in bringing Alex into his world of blood and darkness, Kade must confront both his personal demons and the even greater evil that could destroy all he holds dear…

I had a bit of a bumpy start with this series, but I’m really glad I pushed on with this it. Things are really picking up now, and I’m finding myself increasingly intrigued with the way in which the overall story is developing.

Our hero is Kade. We’ve seen him here and there in the past books, but he hasn’t really played a very big role. But then he gets his chance to shine when he’s asked to travel to Alaska to investigate a spate of vicious murders that reek of the handiwork of Breed males suffering from Bloodlust. Kade’s happy to step up, even though he’s reluctant to return home. He left Alaska under less than ideal circumstances, and he’s pretty sure that the welcome he’s set to receive is going to make the chilly Alaskan weather look downright balmy. But Kade sucks it up and, upon meeting Alexandra Maguire, he soon finds that he’s really glad he did. Alexandra has had a difficult life. Witnessing the brutal deaths of her mother and younger brother, Alex has gone out of her way to bury those memories along with anything about herself that might label her as “strange”. But things start to fall apart when, on a routine delivery to the more remote regions of her tiny town, she discovers the broken bodies of about a dozen people. Everyone is set on blaming the horrific find on a pack of rogue wolves, but Alex is sure that it’s something far more sinister. Only, no one will believe her–no one except the mysterious stranger, Kade.

I really enjoyed this book. Kade and Alex were cute together, but they weren’t my favourite element of this book. As is becoming my habit, I found myself more interested in the overall development of the world that Adrian’s created. The two things that I found myself most drawn in by were the situation with the Ancient, and what Jenna’s deal was. Those two are both characters I felt some sympathy for. The Ancient is vicious, no doubt about it. But he’s also been stuck on this alien planet, in completely unfamiliar surroundings, being abused by the evil Dragos. And Jenna lost her entire family in one fell swoop. She’s basically got nothing left. And I really want her to have some kind of happily-ever-after. Which, luckily enough, is what I think is going to happen in the next book.

This series is really starting to grow on me, and I’m really looking forward to seeing what’s going to happen next. Bring on the next installment of the Midnight Breeds!    

Holy Wow Wednesday: Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy

I have recently realised that I have a little bit of a thing for cowboys. Well, “cowboys” since I pretty much classify any guy wearing a tight pair of jeans and goofy hat as a cowboy. My ignorance aside, some of the good ol’ boys are smoking…

tumblr_n06awwGz9F1rdi0g3o1_500

tumblr_n0xyapawD71ruyjmfo1_500

tumblr_n0f5x26a671t0gosoo1_500

tumblr_myval2aLGc1re8f5xo1_500

tumblr_myex81ygHF1s1di4zo1_500

tumblr_my59t6XUkr1rgzvh7o1_500

tumblr_mxltmm29vR1rrt383o1_500

These boys are enough to make me want to pack up my stuff and find me my own cowboy. Have an awesome week everybody!

In Death: Glory in Death

Glory in Death

Glory in Death

The dead were her business. She lived with them, she worked with them, studied them. She dreamed of them. Murder no longer shocked, but it continued to repel.

The first victim is found lying on a sidewalk in the rain. The second is found murdered in her own apartment building. Both have had their throats slashed.

New York City homicide lieutenant Eve Dallas has no problem finding connections between the two crimes. Both women were beautiful and successful; their glamorous lives and loves the talk of the city. And their intimate relations with powerful men provide Eve with a long list of suspects–including her own lover, Roarke.

As a woman, Eve is compelled to trust the man who shares her bed. But as a cop, it’s her job to follow every lead, to explore every secret passion, no matter how dark. Or how dangerous.

There are some authors who just have that something. You know, that thing, that quality, to their writing that makes it almost impossible to put their books down. J.D Robb has that thing. With every chapter that I finished, I became more and more glad that I’d started this series. It really is something else.

Eve Dallas’s life hasn’t changed all that much since the end of Naked in Death. She still investigates murders, she still works too hard, she still has nightmares. The only aspect in her life that’s undergone any sort of shift is her love life. As in, now she actually has one and she’s not entirely sure how to handle it. Thankfully, but also unfortunately, Eve has plenty to distract herself from her growing attachment to Roarke. A high profile lawyer has been found murdered in a really dodgy part of town. Said lawyer had a close relationship with Eve’s boss, who’s given Eve strict instructions to find whoever did this at whatever cost. So no pressure. But then the body of another high profile lady is found, murdered in the exact same way, and Eve finds herself in the midst of a shit storm. Not only does she have to deal with one truly obnoxious journalist, she also has to face the fact that both victims were linked to Roarke. So, once again, Eve has to turn her eye onto Roarke in her professional capacity. This obviously doesn’t go down too well with Roarke, leaving Eve to deal with issues in both her personal and professional life.

This book was really incredible. I wasn’t only captivated by the who-dunnit element of the story, but also how the characters are starting to evolve. We see Eve gradually becoming more open and vulnerable with Roarke. She spends a lot of time fighting her feelings, and we see how justifiably frustrated Roarke gets. I didn’t really blame him for getting huffy. He really puts himself out there, and still Eve holds back. I think my favourite part of this book was actually getting to know Roarke better. In the first book, he came off as this hot, aloof millionaire who’s suddenly taken an interest in Eve. With this book, we saw Roarke as a person, not the badboy rich guy. He was actually–dare I say it–sweet. Not a word I would have associated with Roarke, but there you go.

Now, I just need to share this with you. This little snippet, after Roarke swoops in to rescue her, is exactly why I love Eve as much as I do. She’s awesome sauce…

“It’s his blood,” Roarke said calmly, “not mine.”
“His blood.” She nearly wobbled again, forced her knees to lock. “You’re not hurt?”
“Nothinh major.” Concerned, he angled her head back to examine the shallow slice along her collarbone, the rapidly swelling eye. “You need a medic, Lieutenant.”
“In a minute. Let me ask you something.”
“Ask away.” Having nothing else, he tore part of his ripped sleeve to dab at the blood on her shoulder.
“Do I come charging into one of your board rooms when your having trouble with a business deal?”
His eyes flicked to hers. Some of the fierceness died out of them into what was almost a smile. “No, Eve, you don’t. I don’t know what got into me.” 

I really recommend giving this series a try. Robb’s descriptions and the way she seems to weave these mysteries so effortlessly is awe inspiring. And the characters are just so interesting. I know that I’m dying to find out more about both Eve and Roarke. They’re both very enigmatic characters, despite being our leads.

Psy-Changeling: Branded by Fire

Branded by Fire

Branded by Fire

Though DarkRiver sentinel Mercy is feeling the pressure to mate, she savagely resists when Riley Kincaid, a lieutenant from the SnowDancer pack, tries to possess her. The problem is not simply that he pushes her buttons;  the problem is that he’s a wolf, she’s a cat, and they’re both used to being on top.

But when a brilliant changeling researcher is kidnapped from DarkRiver territory, Mercy and Riley must work together–before his shadowy captors decide he’s no longer useful. Along the way, the two dominants may find that submitting to one another uncovers not just a deadly conspiracy, but a passion so raw that it will leave them both branded by fire…

 I have fallen in love with this series. I’d really, really, really enjoyed it before, but this book totally clinched it for me: Nalini Singh is a paranormal romance writing goddess. I adored everything about this book. Singh manages to write these hot romances while keeping up with her absolutely riveting world building. Honestly, I’m fangirling right now.

Branded by Fire is Mercy and Riley’s story. I wasn’t sure what to expect from these two since they’ve both been peripheral characters in the past books. But Singh did not disappoint. Branded by Fire is another one of those “opposites attract” scenarios. We start off with Riley and Mercy not particularly liking each other very much. They respect each other on a professional level, each acknowledging that the other is a badass, but not having much time for one another beyond that. Until one day… bang! Pun intended. In a moment of sexually frustrated weakness, Mercy takes Riley on after he propositions her. And, man, talk about fireworks. Riley, of course, is happy to go there again, but Mercy is horrified that she went there with a wolf with no discernible personality. Mercy is of the opinion that Riley makes the chilly Psy seem bubbly, and Riley sort of sees Mercy as a bit of a lose cannon. Mercy thinks that Riley thinks too much, while Riley thinks that Mercy doesn’t think enough. Mercy is a free spirit, and Riley is always in control. Clearly, they’re as different as two people can be in terms of temperament, never mind the fact that one’s a leopard and the other is a wolf.

I enjoyed the romance and how they gradually softened towards one another. Riley hasn’t been the same since Brenna (our heroine from Caressed by Ice) was kidnapped and tortured by a deranged Psy. He’s hardened himself, and everyone in his pack has noticed. But when he starts spending time with Mercy, he lightens up a little. Mercy’s been having some problems that her pack’s picked up on too. As a dominant female, she’s been worried about her prospects of finding a male who can handle her. Thing is, she needs someone even more dominant than her in order for her leopard to accept him. Thankfully, Riley seems to fit the bill.

I’m not going to go into too much detail with the romance because, although I enjoyed it, it wasn’t my favourite part of the book. No, my favourite bits were the more peripheral stuff. I was far more focused on  issues like, what’s happening with the Psy Council? And who exactly is the Ghost? And what is Kaleb Krychek’s story? And why are there so many books on my to-be-read pile between me and Sienna and Hawke’s book?!?! Just to go off on a quick tangent here, but I cannot–CANNOT— wait to read that book! It’s going to be EPIC!!! Ahem… anyhow. I actually find that Singh’s attention to detail is my favourite part of her books. I mean, most romance novels follow the same general patterns and she’s no exception to that. But what she does do, better than almost any author I can think of, is focus on the little things. Her world building is just phenomenal. With each installment of this series, things just get more and more intricate.

In short, I can’t get enough of this series. The attention to detail in the world building is breathtaking, the romances are hot and sweet, and everything is just so well-written that I think this series is going to go down as one of my favourites. Nalini Singh can honestly do no wrong in my eyes, and I am dying to see what’s going to happen next.

 

Holy Wow Wednesday: David Gandy

I must admit, for a long time I didn’t really understand David Gandy’s appeal. Sure, he’s good looking and all, but I didn’t really find him attractive. Kind of like Cristiano Ronaldo; pretty, but not really my cup of tea. And then, one day out of the blue, I saw a picture of this guy and my first thought was, “Holy crap, this guy is HOT!” So, in honour of my epiphany, I present to you the truly delicious David Gandy.

david gandy 1

 

david gandy 2

david gandy 3

david gandy 4

david gandy 5

I learnt an important lesson this week: I need to get my eyes checked regularly. And also to frequenlty feel if I have a pulse, since the only way a person can possibly not appreciate Mr Gandy is if they’re both blind and dead.

 

Immortals After Dark: Dark Desires After Dusk

Dark Desires After Dusk

Dark Desires After Dusk

 

A Ruthless Demon Mercenary.
A Lovely Young Halfling.
In the Dark, There is No Escaping Desire.

A seductive beauty he can never have, yet can’t resist…

Cade of the rage demons will stop at nothing to atone for the one wrong that will haunt him forever. But once he secures the key to his redemption, the halfling Holly Ashwin, Cade finds that the woman he thought he could use for his own ends and then forget haunts him as much as his past.

A tormented warrior she should fear, but can’t deny…

Raised as a human, Holly Ashwin never knew some frightening legends are real until she encounters a brutal demon who inexplicably guards her like a treasure. Thrust into a sensual new world of myth and power, with him as her protector, she begins to crave the demon’s wicked touch. 

Surrender to dark desires…

Yet just when he earns Holly’s trust, will Cade be forced to betray the only woman who can sate his wildest needs–and claim his heart?

It’s official: Kresley Cole is, without a shadow of a doubt, one of my absolute favourite authors. In fact, I think she’s in the top five. Every time I start another of her books, I think to myself that it can’t possibly be any better than the last. And then… I’m proven wrong. Each and every single time.

Dark Desires After Dusk is Cadeon Woede’s story. Cade is a rage demon. And not just any rage demon; he is actually the brother of the king of the rage demons… and also the reason why his brother, Rydstrom, lost said kingdom to an evil sorcerer. It happened centuries ago, but no one’s been willing to let him live it down. Now, at long last, Cade has the opportunity to make things right. All he needs to do is deliver the Vessel, a Lore female destined to give birth to either a force of ultimate evil or ultimate good, to a slightly deranged sorcerer, and he’ll be well on his way to mending fences between him and his brother. Cade should be chuffed as hell to finally accomplish what he’d started to believe was impossible. Except the Vessel is none other than Holly, a woman he believed to be forbidden to him due to the fact that she was human. Now it turns out that Holly is not, in fact, human but Cade can’t have her anyway because he’s promised his brother to put the needs of their kingdom above his own. Poor demon…

Holly Ashwin was raised as a human. A woman with an unquestionably brilliant mind, Holly suffers from some… social anxieties. Sporting a bad case of OCD and a reluctance to get intimate with her supportive boyfriend, Holly lives a very ordered life. At least, until she finds out that not only is she part Valkyrie, but she’s also the Vessel. Gone is her predictable and structured life; she’s now got almost every faction of the Lore coming after her and finds herself having no choice but to trust a foul-mouthed, rough-and-tumble demon. A demon who, as time passes, she finds herself increasingly attracted to.

God, I loved this book. Every single little thing. The characters, the plot, the dialogue–everything– was just epic. Cade was just this lovable, brash moron who I just wanted to hug… and do other things to. He’s had a thing for Holly for months but, believing her to be human, has resigned himself to the fact that he can never have her. And then things just get worse for him when he realises that her being human would be the least of his problems. He tries so hard to sort of work his way onto her good side, but half the time that just backfires on him. He was this mixture of cocky and uncertain with Holly, and it just made him so sexy. And Holly was an utter badass, too. I think she may be my favourite leading lady in this series so far, and that’s saying something. Cole’s heroines never wait around for their men to come save them. He’s not there when the shit hits the fan? She takes care of it herself, because she’s got shit to do. Holly adapted really well to her change in circumstances, and didn’t let Cade just talk his way into her bed. She told him when she thought he was being full of crap (which was fairly often) and held her ground when confronted with the freakiness of the Lore. The only thing I wish is that we’d seen more of Rydstrom. I think it would have been interesting to see more of him and Cade interacting. But since he was kidnapped by an evil sorceress for reasons unknown, we’ll just have to wait for his book to see a resolution to his and Cade’s issues.

In all, this book was everything you could possibly want from a paranormal romance: Take-no-prisoners heroines get paired up with sexy bad boy heroes to take on some nasty thing bent on destruction. And nobody does it like Kresley Cole.

You can buy Dark Desires After Dusk at Sony‘s ebook store.

In Death: Naked In Death

Naked In Death

Naked In Death

She woke in the dark. For a moment she simply lay there, shuddering, imprisoned, while the dream faded. After ten years on the force, Eve still had dreams.

Named by the social worker who rescued her as a child, Eve Dallas is now a New York City cop who lives for the job. 

While recovering from her latest case, Eve is sent to investigate the brutal execution of Sharon DeGlass. A high-class escort and senator’s granddaughter, Sharon has been shot three times with an illegal gun and left naked and posed on her own bed.

All the evidence points Eve towards Irish billionaire Roarke. With an instant sexual attraction between them, Eve and Roarke must work together to find a sadistic killer–but can Eve really trust a man whose past is as damaged as her own?

I had heard of J.D Robb, or Nora Roberts, for a long time and for some reason, I never tried any of her stuff. Let me let you in on a little secret: that was dumb. I was dumb. Because this book was brilliant. Robb is an incredible writer. Her descriptions are so vivid, her characters are so complex and layered, and I was kept on the edge of my seat the entire time I was reading. This book was, in a word, phenomenal.

Our story is set in the year 2058, and a lot has changed. Prostitution is now legal, guns are–for the most part–illegal, and genetic testing is done to ensure that the worst of humanity’s violent tendencies are weeded out. Despite many of the advancements that have been made, murder is still a fact of life. This is where out leading lady, Eve Dallas, comes in. She’s a cop, and she’s been called in to investigate the murder of a prostitute. This particular case has made headlines, not only because of the way in which the victim was killed but also because of the woman’s social status. Her grandfather is a high-ranking member of a conservative political party calling for a return to a more “moral” way of life, where prostitutes are arrested and the American public has the right to bear arms. Also of note is the fact that this woman wasn’t strangled or stabbed; she was shot. So there is a lot of public interest in this case and a great deal of pressure on Eve to catch the person responsible. And the pressure continues to mount when more prostitutes are found dead, all killed in the exact same way. As Eve investigates, she finds a lot of evidence pointing in the direction of Roarke, the gorgeous, mysterious billionaire. Eve pursues the investigation wherever it takes her, but things are made a little complicated by the sexual tension between her and Roarke.

I need a minute to talk about Eve. She was such a complete and utter badass. I cannot remember the last time I enjoyed a heroine this much. She didn’t put up with anybody’s shit. Her utter focus on finding the truth, on catching the bad guy, was awesome. She was tough, but she never came across as hard. Eve has suffered through some major trauma in her life, but she’s overcome it to become on of the best cops in New York. She’s just the kind of heroine that you have to root for. Given her damage, you just want her to be happy. This leads me nicely to Roarke. He is Mr Megabucks, the guy who has everything and wants for nothing. Well, there is one thing he wants: Eve. For the first time since he made his first million, it looks like Roarke is actually going to have to really work at getting what he wants because Eve is wary of him from the get-go. Not only because he’s a suspect but because he threatens her on a level that no one else ever has.

This is normally the kind of book I would avoid since I don’t really like being kept in any real kind of suspense. But I loved everything about this book. I honestly had no clue who the murderer was, even until the end. I know there are a crap load of books in this series and, while some may find that intimidating, I find that I can’t wait to delve even deeper into it.

You can buy Naked in Death over at Sony‘s ebook store.

Holy Wow Wednesday: Random Hotties

I’ve been slacking off in the Holy Wow Wednesday department for the last few weeks. I’m sorry. First, I was on holiday and my internet connection was sketchy at best. And then I came home and I just haven’t seen anything that’s revved my engine . Everything was just kind of… meh. But, thanks to much toiling on Tumblr, I’ve found something pretty for us to ogle. His name is Kevin ten Hoeve. He’s a model, and he is hot as fuck. Don’t believe me? Have a look for yourself.

6449be2cf779d71ebc1f07429a932198

 

d8a7d5f7165238760fd1b79c8de7f722

modello4

Man, this guy is so hot it hurts. I hope this tides you guys over until next week, when I’ll hopefully have something more to follow up with. Have an awesome week guys!

The Fallen Angels: Possession

Possession

Possession

When Cait Douglass resolves to get over her broken heart, throw off her inhibitions, and really start living, she’s unprepared for the two sensual men who cross her path. Torn between them, she doesn’t know which to choose–or what kind of dire consequences could follow.

Jim Heron, fallen angel and reluctant savior, is ahead in the war, but he puts everything at risk when he seeks to make a deal with the devil–literally. As yet another soul is unwittingly caught in the battle between him and the demon Devina, his fixation on an innocent trapped in Hell threatens to sidetrack him from his sacred duty…

Can good still prevail if true love makes a savior weak? And will a woman’s future be the key, or the curse, for all humanity? Only time, and hearts, will tell.

I have loved J.R Ward for a long time. I remember reading Dark Lover and being like, this woman a goddess and I worship her. And for the most part, this has remained the case. But while this book was pretty good, I was still expecting more. I may well be alone in feeling this way, but I thought it was a situation where the story line was filled with both absolutely nothing and a whole lot. Stuff happened but it didn’t feel like it moved the story forward in any real way.

Our romance centres around three people. The first is Cait Douglass. She went through a major heartbreak a few years ago and, as a result, hasn’t really been living. But after a major shock in the form of an unexpected death, Cait has decided that life is too short to be sitting around on her ass, and she’s made a major effort to throw herself back out there. Then we have G.B, whose last name I can’t for the life of me remember and can’t find in the damn book. He’s sexy, sensitive, charming, and crazy talented. He’s everything you’d want in a guy, what with his ridiculous good looks and willingness to talk about his feelings. Duke Philips is the exact opposite of G.B. He’s a rough and tough bouncer, a man of few words. In fact, the only things G.B. and Duke have in common is that they are both fine as hell and they both have their respective eyes on Cait.

In addition to the  love triangle, we have my favourite angels and crazy bitch demon. I know I’ve said it before but I love Devina. She’s a complete psycho, but she’s funny. Ward has taken a character who should be completely repugnant and made her… almost relatable. She’s pining after a guy who has zero interest in her (but she’s managed to convince herself that they’re in love), she sees a psychiatrist, she has difficulties letting go, and she hates her yoga instructor. Our angels have been cut down to two, with only Adrian and Jim left to save the world now that Eddie’s gone. Well, more like one and a half. Those of you who’ve been following this series will know that Jim’s focus on this war has been split pretty much from the beginning due to the horrific murder of Sissy Barten. Jim has been so fixated on the death of this young woman, and on her torture down in hell, that he’s done something that has put the outcome of the entire war in jeopardy: He’s willing to trade one of his wins in the war for Sissy’s release from hell. To say that “the shit hits the fan” would be a huge understatement.

This was probably my least favourite installment in the Fallen Angels series. I can’t tell you why, but I just felt that there was something missing. There just wasn’t the same level of excitement and suspense that there usually is. That being said, I still enjoyed this book. Ward just has this ability to make me cackle with her writing style and she gave us some pretty steamy sex scenes. Plus, the end of Possession will have us waiting with baited breath to see what’s going to happen next.

Immortals After Dark: Dark Needs at Night’s Edge

Dark Needs at Night's Edge

Dark Needs at Night’s Edge

The Beauty Wants Him Gone-
The Warrior Can’t Leave

Let the games begin…

Neomi Laress, a famous ballerina in the 1900s, became a phantom the night she was murdered. Imbued with powers, but invisible to the living, she haunts her beloved home, scaring away any trespassers–until she encounters a ruthless immortal even more terrifying than Neomi herself.

To prevent him from harming others, Conrad Roth’s brothers imprison him in an abandoned manor. There only Conrad can see the dancer with wild raven hair–who seems determined to drive him further into madness. The exquisite creature inflames him with desire, leaving his body wracked with lust and his soul torn as he finds himself coveting her for his own. 

Yet even if Conrad can win Neomi and claim her completely, evil still surrounds her. Once he returns to the brutality of his past to protect her, will he succumb to the dark needs seething inside him?

Kresley Cole really is something else. Every time I read something of hers, I’m just left in utter awe. How she manages to create these awesome characters, while writing intensely hot romances, while also producing this incredibly complex and intriguing world is beyond me. Each book in this series just gets better and better than the last. 

Dark Needs at Night’s Edge is book four in the Immortals After Dark series and, as usual, Cole did not disappoint. Conrad Roth is… well, the kindest thing to call him would be troubled. He was once a vampire hunter, sworn to destroy any and all of the monstrous creatures he could find. Aside from Conrad’s duty to his vampire slaying buddies, he also had a duty to his family. Living in Estonia back in the day was not easy, especially considering that the country had beef with Russia at the time. The whole war thing, coupled with the fact that his little sisters were killed by Russian looters, and the fact that he was turned into a vampire by his brothers in spite of the fact that he was trained to loathe the creatures, has left Conrad a little bit crazy. He’s now one of the most feared assassins in the Lore and he’s also seeking revenge against his brothers. So, to say our hero has issues would be an understatement. That’s why he needs a heroine who’s capable of seeing the lighter side of life, someone who–despite being through a lot–is still capable of laughing and smiling and being happy.

Enter Neomi. Neomi is a phantom. She had fairly humble beginnings, going from being a burlesque dancer to a highly acclaimed ballerina in just a few short years. However, she was killed by a jilted lover the night she was to make the announcement that she’d bought her dream house, and all by herself too. So, since that fateful night, Neomi has been stuck in that house and has been forced to live her death once a month. Not the most ideal conditions to live under, but Neomi gets by okay, scaring away those she deems unworthy of living in her home/prison and observing those that she finds acceptable. It’s been a while since Neomi last had house guests and she kind of misses the company, but she’s not entirely sure how she feels about having a ranting, raving madman in her house. Even stranger than his behaviour is the fact that he can see her.

I loved this book so much. Neomi and Conrad were beautiful together. The fact that Conrad was able to see Neomi but not actually touch her took the sexual tension to a whole new level. It also gave them the chance to get know each other before the hopped into bed together. But beyond the romance between Neomi and Conrad was the fact that we got to see a whole bunch of my other favourite characters. We got see see Mariketa and Bowen, and a couple of the Valkyrie and even the demon brothers, Cade and Rydstrom. Shiver me timbers, those guys are smoking!

Dark Needs at Night’s Edge has been my favourite book in this series by far and I am so looking forward to Dark Desires After Dusk. It’s Cade’s book, and I’m dying to see more of the sexy demon brothers. You can buy this book over at Amazon. It’s the teeniest bit cheaper there.

Book of the Month: December

It’s not often that a book grabs me so completely. I’ve read books that were absorbing, but never any that were quite so visceral as Evenfall. I’m not going to go on too much about it because I imagine I fangirled quite enough in my review. This scene is from fairly early on in the book, and it was a moment where both Boyd and Sin’s defenses momentarily dropped.

Boyd didn’t know how long he’d been asleep before he heard it, or even whether it was a dream. He only knew that an unfamiliar sound caught his attention and that he felt mildly disoriented. 

Opening his eyes, he listened closely with his brows furrowed down slightly. When he realized what direction it was coming from, he rolled his head discreetly and peered through the darkness. It took him a few moments to discern what it was.

When he realized it came from Sin’s bed, the surprise jerked him awake.

Sin was curled in a tight ball on his bed as though he were trying to protect himself. Despite that, the muscles in his face and body were twitching oddly. A soft, incoherent exclamation fell from his lips and he unwound himself from the ball abruptly. 

He extended one of his arms away from his body and one hand dangled off the bed, the fingers twitching and tensing. He muttered in Chinese softly in his sleep, his voice low and strained.

Boyd shifted and pushed himself up on one elbow, his eyebrows drawn down as he stared. Sin so often seemed silent and still, like a statue, that it was disturbing to see him so obviously distressed.

“Sin?” he asked loudly, hoping to wake him.

The word did nothing. In fact, whatever nightmare Sin was having only seemed to progress in intensity. His head turned back and fourth, black hair splaying against the white sheets of the bed. His face turned towards Boyd and moonlight shone across it, showing a vulnerable, naked expression that bordered on fear.

Boyd sat up, looking at him with actual concern. He didn’t know what to do; it was almost alarming to see Sin in this state. The man was usually so controlled that Boyd never knew how many layers there were before his true opinion would show.

But in this case, with Sin asleep, Boyd knew everything he was seeing was the truth. The fact that Sin sounded terrified made Boyd get out of bed. Even if Sin hadn’t been making noise, Boyd wouldn’t have been able to go back to sleep in good conscience.

Boyd threw his legs over the side of the bed and padded across the room toward Sin’s bed. He’d seen the way Sin hadn’t seemed to react much to Lydia when reliving a nightmare but he’d been drugged at the time.

“Sin, wake up,” Boyd said loudly, lightly touching the hand dangling in front of him.

The reaction was immediate.

Sin’s eyes snapped open; wild and filled with madness. Seemingly without transition, Boyd was suddenly thrown across the room. He smashed into a table so hard that it flew a few inches off the floor, crashed against the wall and fell over. He crashed into the floor; his vision clouded and he couldn’t properly breathe. Everything that was on the table clattered around him in a spray that peppered his body. His bag fell down next to him, spilling its contents.

Before he could even understand what had happened, violently strong hands were on him. He was yanked back and flipped ruthlessly, slammed onto his back. His head cracked against the hardwood floor and pain shot down his neck.

Boyd’s eyes fell shut of their own accord. When they snapped open a breath later, Sin’s face was less than an inch from his own, and there was no recognition in it at all. Fear and surprise overcame Boyd. His heart stumbled. Green eyes blazed at him with the same uncontrollable fury he had seen in the surveillance videos. As the words ‘automatic kill mode’ moved through his mind, he realized that Sin’s hands were now wrapped around his neck. 

“Sin,” Boyd yelled as Sin’s fingers started to tighten. “Hsin! Stop!

The response was unexpected. The heart pounding moment, feeling like it had been on fast-forward, suddenly stilled. Tension made the shadows in the room zero in on them while Sin faltered. Long, powerful fingers loosened slightly on Boyd’s neck. That shadowed face stared down uncomprehendingly.

Boyd didn’t know if it was the use of Sin’s real name or the plea that had gotten his attention but either way he took advantage of the moment.

“Stop,” he said urgently. His body was so tense it felt locked in place. He kept himself perfectly still, as nonthreatening as if he were dealing with a wild animal. “I won’t do anything–Just stop, Hsin. Don’t hurt me.”

Pale green eyes met honey brown and Sin’s brow furrowed as he absorbed the words. His hands remained poised on Boyd, ready to snap his neck in an instant. A long, tense moment passed in which the only movement was their chests rising and falling with their breath. Then sluggish awareness began to creep back into Sin’s eyes. The manic wildness slowly drifted out of his face and was replaced by an expression of confusion.

At first it seemed that Sin wasn’t even aware of what had happened but then his eyes widened and he scrambled backwards, lowering into a crouch. Panting and tense, his body was coiled tighter than a spring about to snap. He still didn’t look entirely back to himself and his green eyes flitted around quickly. He didn’t speak but appeared to be bracing himself, waiting for something to happen.

Tense and unwilling to move, Boyd came to two conclusions in quick succession. One, he still had no idea whether or not Sin would attack him. Two, he was almost positive Sin had only stopped when he had made it known that he was not a threat. There was only one thing he had that could possibly be considered a threat, and it was what Sin seemed to be waiting for.

Moving as fast as he could so his motions were not misunderstood, Boyd pulled the small remote out of his nearby bag. Sin tensed, eyes narrowing but his face turned into a study of complete shock when Boyd threw the remote at him. Sin caught it in midair, the action almost an unconscious reflex as their eyes stayed locked.

“Take it,” Boyd panted roughly. “I don’t want it–I’m not here to hurt you.”

For a long moment the only sound in the room was of their labored breathing as they stared at each other. For the first time since they’d met, Sin’s face was completely open and his thoughts were clear.

Emotions Boyd hadn’t even been positive Sin ever felt were aimed at him. Shock, guilt and fear dominated his slightly widened green eyes and parted lips. The moment stretched at they stared at each other, the chaos of the last few minutes adding to the panting of their breath and eyes locked on each other. But it didn’t last long and everything snapped back to normal speed.

Sin abruptly ran out of the cabin. He was there and gone so fast that it seemed liked he’d disappeared in the blink of an eye.

Kindle location: 3434 of 21534

It was after this that Sin and Boyd developed this tiny smidgen of trust and formed the beginning of their friendship.

In the Company of Shadows: Evenfall

Evenfall

Evenfall

Years after the bombs of WWIII have changed the physical and political landscape, the Agency ruthlessly works behind the scenes to take down rebel groups that threaten the current government. Their goals justify all means. Hsin Liu Vega (Sin) is their most efficient and deadly assassin ever. However, he tends to go off on unauthorized killing sprees and somehow his assigned partners all end up dead under suspicious circumstances. That is why the Agency has had him locked up in a box on the fourth floor for years. But now they think it is time to put the psychopath back in the field. With a new partner.

Boyd’s mother, a high ranking Agency official, volunteers her teenage son for the position. Boyd is not afraid of death. In fact, his life has been such an endless cycle of apathy and despair for the last few years that he’d welcome it. 

Can these two broken men form an efficient partnership? Can they learn to trust anyone, let alone each other? Sin doesn’t give a fuck about the Agency, or the androgynous boy who holds the remote to the shock collar that is supposed to control him.

On the other hand, Boyd is strangely unafraid of the man everyone calls “monster” and Sin seems reluctant to let his keeper get himself killed on any mission. Yet.

Have you ever read a book where, a couple of chapters in, you question the wisdom of having started it at all? Not because it’s bad but because it is so good. Almost too good. Like your brain has just been kicked in the metaphorical face, solar plexus and nuts all at the same time. Ever had that feeling? Because I was assaulted by that feeling every time I picked up my Kindle and started reading.

Sin and Boyd are the most interesting characters I’ve read in a long time. Individually and as a team, these two were riveting. They’re both so damaged and so sad and they just completely broke my heart. Boyd is just… completely apathetic. His traumatic past has made it so that he honestly doesn’t care if he lives or dies. When he’s given the gig at the Agency, it’s just a means of passing the time until he croaks. He has this huge wall between him and the people surrounding him; very little can inspire any sort of reaction from him. And that is what makes him perfect for the recently opened position at the Agency: the position of being Hsin Liu Vega’s new partner. Sin makes me want to cry. Like, ugly snot-en-trane cry. He has had such a horrible life, with the people who were meant to protect him doing him the most damage. Sin had been trained from an early–and I mean, ridiculously early–age to be an assassin, despite showing signs of mental instability. After his father died, Sin went to the Agency and picked up where his father left off. Instead of showing empathy, Sin’s new colleges treated him like shit and cemented Sin’s decision to never trust anyone. And now he and Boyd are thrown together and expected to work as a team. Needless to say, the beginning was rough. But then things get better. Boyd doesn’t treat Sin like a monster; he treats him like any other guy, albeit someone seriously lacking in the people skills department. Seeing Sin gradually let his guard down, in even the teeniest ways, was just so sweet and so sad. And seeing Boyd let something filter through the barriers he’d put up between himself and the rest of the world just put a lump in my throat. There were parts where I was pretty much wanted to get inside the book and be, like:

  

I’m not going to go into too much detail as to the actual story line. I could spend the whole day telling you about it and still not manage to do it justice. From here on, I’m just going to tell you how this book made me feel. I have always been one of those people who has the tendency to shout at my books. It doesn’t always happen; it’s only when I’m really into what’s happening on the pages. I spent so much time yelling at my Kindle that I honestly think that I was starting to freak my family out a little bit. Seriously, I was rowdy. Shouting in anger because someone was being hateful, or Sin and Boyd’s massive communication issues reared their ugly heads; just about sobbing when something awful happened to Sin or Boyd (which was fucking often, I’ll have you know); giggling when Sin got snarky; and heaving dreamy sighs whenever my boys had a moment where they seemed to get each other. This book was honestly an emotional roller coaster. There were times when I was miserable. Like, how could these evil authors do such horrible things to these two characters I had so quickly come to adore? But, at the same time, I have never been happier to be miserable because of a book.

I think that by now you can tell that I loved this book. A lot. That being said, I do want to warn you of a few things. Firstly, you will not like me if you decide to take my advice and give this book a go. I currently sort of, but not really, loathe the people who recommended this book to me because I had not planned on spending my December holiday as an emotional wreck. Next, you can probably tell that this book is not what you’d call “light and fluffy”. If you are looking for candy floss, you might want to keep on looking. I’m not saying that this book won’t totally grab you if you start, but it is a little on the heavy side. Thirdly, it might take you a while to finish reading. Not as long as it’s taken me (two bloody weeks!) but at 1400 pages, it’ll probably consume quite a bit of your time. So do yourself a favour and wait until you’ve finished up with any deadlines or whatever.

However, even with all these warnings in place, I can honestly not think of a better way for anyone to spend their time. Evenfall was incredible. I don’t think I’ve ever been so invested in characters and their development before. And I realise I’m droning on so I’m going to go now before I make you gag. 

You can download the entire series for free right here.

Sidewinder: Shock & Awe

Shock & Awe

Shock & Awe

After barely surviving a shootout in New Orleans, Sidewinder medic Kelly Abbott has to suffer through a month of recovery before he can return home to Colorado. He’s not surprised when fellow Sidewinder Nick O’Flaherty stays with him in New Orleans. Nor is he surprised when Nick travels home with him to help him get back on his feet–after all, years on the same Marine Force Recon team bonded the men in ways that only bleeding for a brother can. He’s very surprised, though, when Nick humors his curiosity and kisses him.

Nick knows all of Kelly’s quirks and caprices, so the kiss was a low-risk move on his part… or so he thought. But what should have been a simple moment unleashes a flood of emotions and urges that neither man is prepared to address. 

Now, Kelly and Nick must figure out what they mean to each other–friends and brothers in arms, or something even deeper?–before the past can come back to ruin their tenuous future.

It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of Abigail Roux’s, so I was mega excited about Shock & Awe. Needless to say, Ms Roux did not disappoint. This novella was packed with steamy sex and some really heavy emotional scenes. This is an excellent start to the Sidewinder series.

Shock & Awe takes place just after the emotional trauma that was Touch & Geaux. Kelly is recovering from a gunshot wound that, had the bullet hit it’s target, would have killed Nick. Kelly is in fairly good spirits for a man with a bullet hole in him, but he still needs some help getting around. For a heart stopping minute, it looked like Kelly was going to have to ask his ex-wife to step in, but Nick offers to help him out instead. The guys have been through a lot together, so Nick’s offer is no big deal. While Nick and Ty were always close, Kelly and Nick are pretty tight too. They understand each other and there’s never been any weirdness between the two. Until Kelly, in a painkiller induced haze, asks Nick to kiss him. This comes as a bit of a surprise to both of them when Nick not only agrees to it, but that it turns out to be the kind of kiss that rocks their world. This opens up an avenue that neither man ever would have guessed existed. So the question is, do they go for it and possibly ruin their friendship; or do they ignore the attraction and run the risk of missing out on something amazing?

In addition to Shock & Awe, we got a teeny, tiny short story called Bait & Switch, featuring Zane. My poor baby. It just felt wrong to read anything with Zane that didn’t also directly involve Ty. It just made my heart hurt to see Zane so sad. I just wanted to get in the book and give him a hug. There was just enough angst in this short story to have me making these high pitched keening noises.

I really did enjoy this novella. Nick and Kelly were insanely hot. The chemistry between these two was absolutely explosive. I was just sitting there at one point fanning myself. I do not have enough words to adequately describe the bedroom scenes. Ms Roux has always had the ability to write some scorchers, but she pulled out all the stops for this one. And she also threw in some serious moments of heart-stopping angst. They didn’t last long, but they were enough to leave me feeling a little faint. But. But. There is one thing that niggled at me and kept me from giving Roux her usual five stars. It was Kelly. Now, this does not in any way mean that I didn’t like him, because I did. It’s just that we got to know Kelly–not very well, granted–as a straight guy. And now, suddenly, he’s decided that he likes cock. I know that this is just a novella so there wasn’t much time for soul searching and whatever, but I just think that the transition was too… easy. It just bothered me a little.

Definitely a good start to the Sidewinder series. I’m very excited to see more of the Sidewinder boys in the future. You can buy Shock & Awe over at Riptide.

Midnight Breeds: Ashes of Midnight

Ashes of Midnight

Ashes of Midnight

A woman driven by blood. A man thirsting for vengeance. A place where darkness and desire meet…

As night falls, Claire Roth flees, driven from her home by a fiery threat that seems to come from hell itself. Then, from out of the flames and ash, a vampire warrior emerges. He is Andreas Richen, her onetime lover, now a stranger consumed by vengeance. Caught in the crossfire, Claire cannot escape his savage fury–or the hunger that plunges her into his world of eternal darkness and unending pleasure.

Nothing will stop Andreas from destroying the vampire responsible for slaughtering his Breed brethren… even if he must use his former lover as a pawn in his deadly mission. Blood-bonded to his treacherous adversary, Claire can lead Andreas to the enemy he seeks, but it is a journey fraught with danger–and deep, unbidden desires. For Claire is the one woman Andreas should not crave, and the only one he’s ever loved. A dangerous seduction begins–one that blurs the line between predator and prey, and stokes the flames of a white-hot passion that may consume all in its path…

I know that I’ve spent some time bitching about this series and how inconsistent it can be. One moment it’s really good, and then the next it’s utterly predictable. And I keep reading because I’ve already bought the bloody books. And for the first time in a while, I’m glad that I’ve kept reading because this book was a definite “up”.

I’ve spoken about Andreas Richen before. He was the sexy leader of the Hamburg DarkHaven when the unthinkable happened: his entire family was gunned down in a mindless attack that left Andreas as the sole survivor. It goes without saying that Andre was devastated by the loss, and he’s now out for revenge. Over the past few months, he’s steadily been killing off those involved in the attack against his DarkHaven. And by now everyone who’s wronged him is dead… except for one person: Wilhelm Roth. Roth is a big wig at the enforcement agency, an increasingly corrupt organisation meant to ensure the protection of the Breed, and the one who ordered the hit on Andreas’s DarkHaven. Andre is dead set on making Roth pay, but there is one little, tiny detail making the whole revenge thing a bit complicated: Roth is mated to Claire. Andre and Claire have A Past. And it isn’t one based exclusively on scratching their respective itches; they genuinely cared about each other. But then one day Andre just disappeared from Claire’s life without a word of explanation. Devastated, but convinced that Andre no longer wanted her, Claire decided to move on with her life. Unfortunately, the guy she decided to move on with was a thundering loony. Once Claire realises this, she ends up on the run along with Andre. They both eventually end up on the doorstep of the Order, taking the story from Germany to the US.

Overall, I thought this book was much better than a few of the previous ones. I’ll be honest, there was a time or two where I rolled my eyes. I mean, the idea that after all the obsessing Andreas has been doing about Roth, it never once occurred to him to consider why Roth was targeting him seemed silly. But the eye rolls were a lot less frequent in this book. I enjoyed the romance element and the over arching story line. This will probably never be one of my favourite series’ but it’s good if you’re looking for something to pass the time with.

You can buy it at Diesel’s ebook store.

Holy Wow Wednesday: Seduction of a Highland Lass

This week’s Holy Wow is dedicated to the surprisingly raunchy Alaric McCabe. I won’t lie, my tongue was just about hanging out of my mouth when I read this scene. All I could think was that Keely McDonald was one lucky girl. So, without further ado, here it is:

One hand left her and then she felt the brush of his knuckles as he positioned his cock at her opening. He pushed and his thickness filled her, stretching her around his shaft.

She moaned softly. It was a wondrous sensation as he forced himself deeper. Her body clasped tightly to him and rippled over his hardness. When he pulled back, her swollen tissues protested the movement and clamped wetly around his cock. 

“Does it pain you?” he asked.

“Nay,” she whispered.

He thrust into her, harder this time. Never had she felt so stretched, so full. And as he was assured that she could take him this way, he began to ride her more vigorously. 

He reached up and grabbed on to her bound wrists. Holding her tightly, he pulled back as he thrust forward. 

The smacking sound of his thighs pounding against her her bottom filled the air. As gentle as he’d been before, now he took her ruthlessly, setting a pace to please himself. 

Faster and harder and then he paused, buried deeply inside her. She was opened wide and defenseless against whatever he wanted to do. It only heightened her excitement. She wiggled impatiently, but he held her still as he remained lodged inside her. 

Then he withdrew and pounded forward. Much slower and methodical this time. He was in control, his thrusts measured. Hard. Deep. Over and over he retreated and plunged forward until she was begging him to give her release. She needed more. She needed him to move fast and hard, to provide sweet friction.

“Have I not said that you are to obey me this night?” he asked huskily. “‘Tis I who say the commands, Keely. You will say naught buy aye to whatever I ask.”

She squeezed her eyes shut and clenched her teeth in sweet agony as he powered forward in a particularly forceful thrust as if to reinforce his words. Aye, he was in control. She had none.

She had to bite her lip to keep from protesting when he pulled from the tight clasp of her body. He pulled her to her feet and held her until he was sure she was steady. Then he grasped her shoulders and pushed her to her knees on the floor.

His cock was hugely erect, stiff and distended just inches from her face. It gleamed with her wetness and the skin was stretched tight over the broad tip.

“Open your mouth, Keely.”

He thrust one hand into her hair and cupped her nape, at the same time he grasped the base of his cock with his other hand and guided it toward her parted lips.

Her mouth stretched around his swollen girth and he pushed deep. At first she struggled to accommodate him, but he was patient, giving her time to adjust and to breathe through her nose.

Wanting to please him, she took more, but he pulled at her hair to prevent her action. “Nay, just remain still,” he murmured.

Holding her head with both hands, he began to thrust inside her mouth. Slowly at first. He glided across her tongue and to the back of her throat. As she relaxed more, he became more demanding, pushing deeper and holding himself there before retreating so she could draw breath.

The only sounds she could hear was the wet sucking noises as he powered in and out of her mouth and his own harsh breathing.

He groaned when a tiny amount of liquid spurted onto her tongue. Salty and tangy. She prepared herself for more, but he pulled himself roughly from her mouth and then pulled forcefully at his shaft with his hand.

His semen splashed onto her chest. He held her neck and tilted her head upward as he he directed more over her breasts. His fingers tightened at her nape and he groaned as he worked the last of his release onto her skin.

And now I’m off to have a cold shower. Have a happy Wednesday, everyone!

McCabe: Seduction of a Highland Lass

Seduction of a Highland Lass

Seduction of a Highland Lass

Fiercely loyal to his older brother, Alaric McCabe leads his clan in the fight for their birthright. Now, he is prepared to wed for duty, as well. But on his way to claim the hand of Rionna McDonald, daughter of a neighboring chieftain, he is ambushed and left for dead. Miraculously, his life is saved by the soft touch of a Highland angel, a courageous beauty who will put his fealty to his clan, his honor, and his deepest desires, to the test.

An outcast from her own clan, Keely McDonald was betrayed by those she loved and trusted. When the wounded warrior falls from his horse, she is drawn to his strong, lean body. The wicked glint in his green eyes ignites a passion that will follow them back to Alaric’s keep, where their forbidden love draws them deeper into the pleasures of the flesh. But as conspiracy and danger circle closer, Alaric must make an impossible choice. Will he betray his blood ties for the woman he loves?

I have to admit, this series has come as something of a surprise. I looked at the cover and I read the blurb–for this book and In Bed with a Highlander–and was a little hesitant. As you know, I loved In Bed with a Highlander. But it’s been a while so I once again found myself judging a book by its cover. And once again, I was completely blown away.

Alaric is the middle McCabe brother. He’s not as serious as Ewan and not as grouchy and brooding as Caelen. He’s the nice brother. This isn’t to say that he’s any kind of slouch in the sexy badass department. His loyal to his family and his clan is absolute. There is nothing he values more in his life. Which is why, when Laird McDonald put forth the idea of uniting the McCabes and McDonalds through marriage, Alaric stepped up and offered to marry Rionna McDonald. He’s not totally enamoured with Rionna, but… she’ll do. Marrying her will also give Alaric the opportunity to be laird of his own keep, something that will be impossible if he stays with his family. In all, not a bad way for his life to go. But as it turns out, things don’t go exactly to plan. In fact, they go horribly awry with Alaric and his men being attacked in the dead of night. All of his men are killed and Alaric is gravely injured. He hops on his horse in the hopes of getting to safety as soon as possible.

Enter Keely. Keely’s been living on her own for years after being kicked out of her clan. She doesn’t get many visitors aside from those who seek her out for her healing skills. So you can imagine her surprise at seeing this huge ass horse riding up to her cottage and an unconscious man dropping to her feet. Keely’s a little uncertain. Which is smart given that she has no idea who Alaric is or where the hell he came from. But she can’t in good conscience leave him there so she manages to drag him into her cottage and nurses him back to health. Everything goes along swimmingly until the McCabes come to reclaim Alaric and insist on her accompanying them back to their keep. This is where Keely and Alaric are drawn deeper into their attraction to one another. Things are especially difficult for Keely once she realises that not only is he betrothed to another, but that this woman–Rionna– was once her best friend.

I enjoyed this book so very much. Keely and Alaric were wonderful characters. I especially enjoyed Keely. That girl had steel in her spine. She managed to survive after being kicked out of her home for something she didn’t do, she manages to heal the people who come to her for help and, especially impressive, she manages to hold her own with the McCabes. Despite knowing that the guy she loved was going to marry another, Keely had so much dignity. Alaric was… surprisingly sexy. I wasn’t too sure about him from the previous book. It’s not that I didn’t like him, I just wasn’t paying him very much attention. Trust me, all that changed pretty quick; it involved some sexy time featuring some light bondage. It may or may not feature for this week’s Holy Wow Wednesday…

I definitely recommend giving this book a try. Please, I know the blurb and cover are misleading, but this series is so definitely worth your time. You can get it over at Kobo, nice and cheap 😉    

House of Comarre: Flesh and Blood

Flesh and Blood

Flesh and Blood

Sacrifice is a choice…

With the ring of sorrows still missing, and the covenant between othernaturals and humans broken, Chrysabelle and Malkolm’s problems are just beginning. Chrysabelle still owes Malkolm for his help, but fulfilling that debt means returning to Corvinestri, the hidden vampire city neither of them is welcome in.

The discovery that Chrysabelle has a brother could mean her reneging on her promise to Malkolm, something that might make him angry enough to loose the beast living inside him. And fulfilling her vow could prove devastating for Chrysabelle-especially when you throw in power hungry witches, dead fringe vampires, and the Kubai Mata.

Painter has done something really special with this series. She’s taken the traditional vampire lore and turned it on its head. Everything is fresh and exciting and interesting and I think I adore this series. It has everything you could possibly want: action, intrigue, hot guys, a fierce heroine, and a villain you love to hate.

Our story starts a couple of weeks after the big show down with Tatiana (who I think I love). Malkolm and Chrysabelle haven’t spoken at all in that time. It seems that each is waiting for the other to make the first move and, as a result, nothing is happening. Each is hosting their own little pity party, themed “why doesn’t s/he want to talk to me?” It’s a little tedious, but it doesn’t last long and things get interesting quick. Let me run down the basics with each character. Tatiana is as batshit crazy as ever. I know I shouldn’t, but this woman tends to make me laugh. She’s completely insane, ruthless as hell and is probably one of my favourite people in this series. Mal is miserable, Chrysabelle is miserable, Doc is miserable, everyone is miserable except for Tatiana. She’s getting shit done. Tatiana is determined to get her hands on the Ring of Sorrows (no clue what it actually does yet) and as much power as she can along the way. Mal thinks that Chrysabelle has forgotten him and her promise to him. This is despite the fact that she keeps sending him blood to make sure he doesn’t starve. Chrysabelle can’t figure out why Mal hasn’t come to see her. Doesn’t he want her help anymore? Doc is having an awful time of things because Fi, the ghost he loves, if forced to relive her own death night after night and there isn’t anything he can do about it. Except go to a really super dodgy witch who has plenty of her own reasons to pull a fast one on Doc. As you can see, the saying that “misery loves company” definitely rings true here.

In the previous book, Chrysabelle made a promise to Malkom: if he agreed to help her find out who killed her patron, she would help him find a way to remove his curse. You remember, the curse where Mal’s forced to hear the voices of all the people he’s ever killed in his head for the rest of his life. Chrysabelle hasn’t forgotten her promise but she’s still working herself up to seeing Mal again. But due to some unforeseen circumstances, the two are forced together sooner than they had planned. So Chrysabelle and Malkolm are reunited under less than happy conditions. But then something completely unexpected, completely amazing happens that completely makes up for the time and distance: Malkolm gets flirty. You could have knocked me over with a feather. Seriously, I very nearly swooned. Mal is hot while he’s being all broody and whatever, but when he pulls out the charm? Look out, because that guy will cause you to spontaneously combust. Speaking of hot guys, we have a new guy on the scene and this led to the one part of this book that I didn’t enjoy: the dreaded love triangle. Well, at this point it looks more like a potential love triangle. Still, I’m not too keen on the idea. Anyhow, his name is Creek. He’s a member of this monster hunting organisation called the Kubai Mata, who are in New Florida to lend a hand when the shit inevitably hits the fan. I have to admit that while I kinda like Creek, I don’t quite trust him or the Kubai Mata. Looks like we’ll just have to wait and see.

The House of Comarre series is quickly becoming a favourite of mine. It’s only the second book and I’m already hooked. I cannot wait to see what Painter has in store for us next. You can buy it at Sony’s ebook store.

Holy Wow Wednesday: Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night

Remember how I kept telling you about how hot Bowen MacGrieve was? Like, one of the flat-out sexiest heroes I’ve read in ages? And maybe you guys didn’t believe me. So I’m going to back it up with this scene from Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night…

When Bowe yanked the triangles of her suit to the sides, she leaned up on her elbows. With heavy-lidded gray eyes, she watched as he bared her luscious breasts.

At the sight of her nipples, his cock pulsed, about to rip through his jeans. “I’m going tae suckle you so hard you’ll feel me for the rest of the day. Do you want me tae?”

He groaned when she arched her back and fisted her wee hands in his hair to pull him down to one of her breasts. Sucking the peak in bliss, he felt it stiffen and bud under his tongue. As he moved to the other, he said, “Mariketa, you’ve the finest body I’ve ever seen. And I’ve a thousand things I want to do to it, but canna decide where to begin.”

She moaned when he closed his lips on her other nipple. “Whatever you’re going to do, do it quick! I’m close.”

He leaned up, his brows drawn. She wouldn’t last through him preparing her body to receive him. He decided to bring her off before he took her.

Eager to feel her between her thighs again, he plucked free the black string at her right hip. Would she be as wet as before? When he moved to untie the bow at her left hip, she wriggled over to give him better access, as if she couldn’t wait to be rid of her clothes.

Still raised up on her elbows, she stared–rapt like him–as the V of material slinked down, revealing her auburn curls. He chocked out the words, “Part your thighs. Show me how wet you’ve grown.”

In answer, she whimpered and let her knees fall open. A groan broke from his chest when he saw her sex was glistening for him. His cock swelled to be inside it, the pressure in his heavy bollocks nearing pain. His hand shook as he lowered it to stroke her.

At his first touch, her head fell back; he sucked in a breath, thinking he might spend that instant. “So hot and slick. I canna imagine how you’re goin’ tae feel gripping my shaft.”

She lifted her head once more, her brows drawn. “Oh, gods… Bowen…”

He spread her flesh with his thumb and forefinger, about to use his other forefinger to rub her tight little clitoris. Her short, soft moans grew louder with each of her breaths. So close…

The rising seed in his shaft made it throb for relief. Yet even when he was desperate to pin her hips to the ground and plunge it inside her, he wanted to savor the sight of Mariketa on the razor’s edge.

Her reaction was the most erotic thing he’d ever seen.

Her piercing glinted in a filtered ray of sunlight as she began to shake. Her breasts were so plump, her swollen nipples jutting, as if begging to be sucked more. She looked from where he was about to stroke her, then breathlessly gazed up at him, meeting his eyes.

“Bowen, please…”

Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night: pg 211-212

And things get even hotter from there. Mariketa is one lucky, lucky girl. Seriously, as well as being an incredibly well-written, the Immortals After Dark series is hot.

Psy-Changeling Series: Hostage to Pleasure

Hostage to Pleasure

Hostage to Pleasure

Separated from her son and forced to create a neural implant that will mean the effective enslavement of her psychically gifted race, Ashaya Aleine is the perfect Psy–cool, calm and emotionless… at least on the surface. Inside, she’s fighting a desperate battle to save her son and escape the vicious cold of the PsyNet. Yet when escape comes, it leads not to safety, but to the lethal danger of a sniper’s embrace.

DarkRiver sniper Dorian Christensen lost his sister to a Psy killer. Though he lacks the changeling ability to shift into animal form, his leopard lives within. And that leopard’s rage at the brutal loss is a clawing darkness that hungers for vengeance. Falling for a Psy has never been on Dorian’s agenda. But charged with protecting Ashaya and her son, he discovers that passion has a way of changing the rules…

I had mixed feelings about this book. The world building and the overall story line was as brilliant as ever, but I just didn’t feel it in the romance department. This isn’t to say that it wasn’t a really good book, just that I felt that there was something missing.

We met Ashaya Aleine in Mine to Possess. She’s a Psy scientist who’s been assigned to the Implact Protocol by the Psy Council. The idea behind the Protocol is to sort of unify all the Psy minds under one big umbrella. Individual thought will be impossible for the vast majority of the Psy. The Council would be in the position to monitor the entire population’s thoughts at will. No individuality, no dissent. And to make sure Ashaya cooperates, they are holding her son prisoner. Even though Ashaya can’t show it, she adores her son and will do anything to save him. So she makes a deal with the DarkRiver pack. She did them a favour, and she wants them to repay her by getting her son away from the Council. This is where Dorian comes in. He’s not keen on helping a Psy, even one he’s inexplicably attracted to. But after losing his sister to a member of the Psy Council, Dorian is happy to do anything to screw the Psy over, so he agrees to Ashaya’s terms.

Once Ashaya is assured of her son’s safety, she puts her own escape plan into action. Everything goes according to plan. Except for one thing: she inadvertently lands smack bang in the middle of DarkRiver territory. No prizes for guessing who finds her. Clinging desperately to the Psy control she’s all but managed to perfect, Ashaya tries to ignore how much Dorian is affecting her. But Dorian isn’t having any of that. If he has to sit with this infuriating attraction to a Psy, a race he pretty much regards as the enemy, then she can damn well own up to what’s going on between them too. Now, for the most interesting part of this book: what the hell is going on with the Psy Council? Everything is going all topsy turvy and no one on the Council is what they appear. I love the intrigue!

Like I said, the romance didn’t especially do it for me. I think it’s probably because I couldn’t connect with the characters. I didn’t really like Dorian very much. He had a tendency to stretch the whole “alpha” thing into the realm of asshole. Ashaya was okay, but I probably won’t remember her in the long run. That being said, the situation with the Council is getting so good! There actually isn’t much of the Council in each book, just these little tidbits that are slowly making me die with curiosity. I want to know.

Ms Singh is killing it with this series. I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next! Check it out over at Sony’s ebook store.

Immortals After Dark: Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night

Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night

Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night

A Brutal Highland Werewolf.
An Exquisite Young Witch.
Immortal Enemies… Forbidden Temptations.

Her breathless kiss taunts him.

Bowen MacGrieve of the Lykae was nearly destroyed when he lost the one woman meant for him. The ruthless warrior became even colder, never taking another to his bed-until a smoldering encounter with his enemy, Mariketa the Awaited, reawakens his darkest desires. When sinister forces unite against her, the Highlander finds himself using all his strength and skill to keep her alive.

His slow, hot touch is irresistible.

Temporarily stripped of her powers, Mari is forced to take refuge with her sworn adversary. It’s rumored that no one can tempt Bowen’s hardened heart, but soon passion burns between them. Though a future together is impossible, she fears he has no intention of letting her go. 

No deed is too wicked for her seduction.

If they defeat the evil that surrounds them, can Mari deny Bowen when he demands her body and soul-or will she risk everything for her fierce protector?

I loved this book. So much. No question about it, Kresley Cole is right up there on my list of favourite authors. This book was so much fun. We have a gruff, sexy alpha male, smoking hot sex, a sassy heroine, smoking hot sex, a bunch of awesome secondary characters, smoking hot sex, an action packed story line, and did I mention the smoking hot sex?? Sorry, I know I sound like a bit of a perv, but the smoking hot sex thing bears repeating. Bowen MacGrieve was a freaking beast.

But before we get to all that hot stuff, we have to start at the beginning, which starts off in No Rest for the Wicked during the Talisman’s Hie. Like most of Ms Cole’s pairings, Mari and Bowen get off to an extremely rocky start. They’re both competitors in the Hie. It has been foretold that Mariketa the Awaited will be the most powerful witch ever born. Except she doesn’t have much control over her powers, so her spells tend to go a little haywire. She’s entered the Hie in an attempt to prove herself to her coven and the rest of the Lore. Bowen has entered the competition in the hopes of securing the end prize, which will allow him to go back in time to save his mate. In his determination, he’s been mowing down his competitors and, unfortunately, it’s not long before Mari gets caught in the cross hairs. Bowen also has a slight issue with Mari that doesn’t stem from the fact that she’s after the same thing Bowen is; Bowen finds himself wildly attracted to her. Feeling disloyal to his long, lost mate, Bowen lashes out at Mari. Luckily, though, Mari is no pushover and she gives as good as she gets. She manages to hit Bowen with a debilitating spell just before he traps her in a cave with a couple of other competitors and a bunch of creepy incubi.

Mari and Bowen’s story really starts after the Hie. Needless to say, Bowen didn’t win and he’s devastated. It’s like he’s lost his mate all over again. And he’s still suffering from the effects of Mari’s spell. After finding out that Mari’s still trapped in the cave, weeks after the Hie ended, Bowen goes off to save her and get her to remove the spell. But it’s a little late. Mari is righteously pissed and Bowen’s lord-of-the-manner attitude isn’t helping matters, either. The rest of the story follows Bowen’s attempts to win Mari over (not an easy thing) and come to terms with the idea that he may have been given another mate or, and this doesn’t sit well with his, the woman he lost all those years ago wasn’t his real mate.

I loved Bowen MacGrieve. I know I’m going on about him, but this guy was insanely hot. Sex on a stick covered in oh-my-dear-sweet-lord sauce. Despite the fact that he could act like a major jackass when he had a minute, he meant well. For the most part. Luckily, though, he wasn’t dealing with the average girl. He was dealing with Mariketa the Awaited, and she was a badass. I loved this chick. She had ooomph. She called him out on his bullshit, and she wasn’t willing to sit around, waiting to be saved. Honestly, if I had to describe Mari in two words, they’d be: Fucking and Awesome.

I’m going to share some of my favourite bits with you. They mostly showcase Mari’s sassiness and Bowen’s overall hotness.

He stood motionless, clearly not about to be directed. “Only humans call me Mr MacGrieve.”
She shrugged. “I’m not a human.” Her mother was a fey druidess and her late father had been a warlock of questionable repute… “So would you like me to call you Bowen, or Bowe for short?”
“Bowe is what my friends call me, so you doona.”
What an ass… “No problem. I have a slew of other more fitting names for you. Most of them end in
 er.”

And later…

After a few moments he said, “Doona fret, witch. You’re no’ so unbecoming from my angle. Bit scrawny where it counts, but no’ too bad.”
Yep, ogling. Many adjectives could be used to describe her ass but scrawny was not among them. He’s just making these comments and brushing up against you to unnerve you. Knowing that didn’t make his efforts any less effective! “Scrawny where it counts, MacGrieve? Funny, I’d heard the same about you.”

Right towards the end, Mari’s BFF hears Bowen’s voice over the phone. Her response is this: 

“Oh, great Hekate, is that his voice?” Carrow cried. “I just had an orgasm! Fudge your name tag if you have to, but you get some of that some-some.”

In short, Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night was another excellent installment in what already appears to me to be an amazing series. You can buy it from Sony’s ebook store.

Holy Wow Wednesday: Scott Caan

Aaaaannnnd… it’s back! This week’s Holy Wow is dedicated to someone who is most decidedly not my type. I’m more of a “Tall, dark and handsome” kind of girl. Short ass blond guys didn’t especially do it for me. And then I started watching Hawaii Five-O. And Scott Caan, aka Danny Williams, made me rethink what my “type” actually is. I have no clue what it is about him, but I just want to take his pants off. There is just that… indefinable something.

Scott Caan as Danny Williams

Scott Caan as Danny Williams

scott caan

Not typically a fan of smoking but, Jiminy Cricket, does he look insanely hot!

Not typically a fan of smoking but, Jiminy Cricket, does he look insanely hot!

I wish I’d known about this guy sooner. That’s months, maybe even years, of potential perving that I’ll never get back.

Book of the Month: October

Hi there! I don’t know if you guys remember me; it has been a while. I really am sorry to have been neglecting this blog for so long, but between assignments, exams and Tumblr, I haven’t had much time to talk books. But I’m back! And I need to catch up. I am waaaaaay late for October’s book of the month, but rather late than never, right?

I’ve decided that my favourite read for October was A Beginner’s Guide to Rakes by Suzanne Enoch. I absolutely adored Diane, our heroine. She had a sharp tongue and the zingers that flew between her and Oliver had me rolling around laughing. Everything was just so good. I probably shouldn’t have found this particular scene so funny, but I couldn’t help it. So here it is:

Dianne dropped the spent pistol onto the table. She couldn’t very well return it to the small band tied around her thigh, because the barrel was quite hot. And the room still seemed to echo with the loud roar.

In the doorway, Oliver staggered around to face her. “You shot me!”

“It’s not as though I didn’t warn you,” she returned, lowering her skirt from where she’d lifted it to get the pistol.

“You kissed me back! Shoot yourself if you’re angry at someone for that!”

“Oh. I’m not certain I agree with you, but I’ll remember for next time.”

He clapped his right hand over his left shoulder. “See that you do,” he snarled, and stumbled to his knees.

Jenny charged into view and then skidded to a halt, Margaret at her hills. “What-Margaret, fetch water and bandages. And keep the men downstairs. Tell them we shot a mouse.”

“You’re very quick with the excuses,” Oliver noted, sinking onto his backside and no longer looking particularly alarmed.

“Yes, well, I’ve had practice.” Jenny turned her head to look up at Dianne. You shot him? she mouthed. 

“He kissed me,” she whispered back. And now she supposed she needed to assist Jenny, to keep the rat from expiring on her floor. Because that would certainly frighten away potential members. 

“Diane, do you need smelling salts?”

No! I’m fine.” What a silly question. Though she did seem to be swaying a bit. Diane gripped the edge of the table. For God’s sake, she’d shot Oliver Warren. Yes, she disliked him-well, not precisely disliked, but loathed maybe. Or wanted to punch him in the nose-but not enough to shoot him. It was just that he’d-he’d kissed her. And that he’d been correct just then. She’d kissed him back, even knowing that he’d fled her bed like a fox with its tail on fire. 

“Come and help me with his jacket,” Jenny instructed, her voice sharp.

“Yes. Yes, of course.” Blinking, Diane moved forward and knelt beside him to yank [Oliver’s] jacket down his arms.

Oliver cursed blackly, using a selection of profanity so varied that some of it she’d never heard before. “I’ll do it,” he barked, pushing her back with his elbow. 

One of the maids arrived with water and cloths, then hurried away again. This wouldn’t be the first test of her household’s discretion, but a shooting would be of far more temptation and interest to everyone than a countess’s monochromatic wardrobe. Better to know now if they could be trusted, she supposed, rather than later.

“It looks to be a deep graze, my lord,” Jenny said, ripping the sleeve of Oliver’s lawn shirt off at the shoulder. “No ball to dig out.”

“And yet I don’t feel so very grateful,” Oliver retorted.

 “Be thankful that I can aim, then,” Diane commented, sticking her finger through the hole in his jacket sleeve and attempting to rid her head of the last of its cobwebs. “And that I decided your heart was too shriveled to make a decent target.”

A Beginner’s Guide to Rakes: pg 84-86

 

Immortals After Dark: No Rest for the Wicked

No Rest for the Wicked

No Rest for the Wicked

A vampire soldier weary of life…

Centuries ago, Sebastian Wroth was turned into a vampire-a nightmare in his mind-against his will. Burdened with hatred and alone for ages, he sees little reason to live. Until an exquisite, fey creature comes to kill him, inadvertently saving him instead.

A Valkyrie assassin dispatched to destroy him…

When Kaderin the Cold Hearted lost her two beloved sisters to a vampire attack long ago, a benevolent force deadened her to sorrow-accidentally extinguishing all of her emotions. Yet whenever she encounters Sebastian, her feelings-particularly lust-emerge multiplied. For the first time, she’s unable to complete a kill.

Become competitors in a legendary hunt…

The prize of the month-long contest is powerful enough to change history, and Kaderin will do anything to win it for her sisters. Wanting only to win her, Sebastian competes as well, taking every opportunity-as they travel to ancient tombs and through catacombs, seeking relics around the world-to use her new feelings to seduce her. But when forced to choose between the vampire she’s falling for and reuniting her family, how can Kaderin live without either?

Only a couple of books into this series and I’m already coming to love it. No Rest for the Wicked is book two (or three?) in the Immortals After Dark series, and it did not disappoint. This series is fast becoming one of my favourites.

No Rest for the Wicked is the story of Kaderin the Cold Hearted, a Valkyrie, and Sebastian Wroth, a vampire. Kaderin is exactly what her name suggests, which is helpful since she’s an assassin whose made it her life’s mission to kill as many vampires as she can get her hands on. After losing her sisters to the bloodsuckers, Kaderin experienced soul-destroying guilt and grief. She was an utter mess when some well-meaning person decided to make Kaderin immune to grief. Small problem, though: in doing that this mysterious person stripped Kaderin of all her emotions. This has been the case for the past thousand years and hasn’t really been a problem for her. Until she meets Sebastian and the emotions all come flooding back. Sebastian was a general in the Estonian army. He was quite the bad ass. But then things went pear-shaped. While he and his brother, Conrad, were taking care of their little sisters, their castle was attacked by Russian soldiers. The little girls were killed and Conrad and Sebastian were dying. Their older, recently turned, brothers rocked up and then took it upon themselves to turn them into vampires. Three hundred years on, Sebastian still hasn’t recovered from the betrayal. He’s become a hermit, never leaving his home and rarely interacting with people. So you can imagine his surprise when he’s confronted with this gorgeous woman who makes his heart beat again and wants to cut off his head. Sebastian realises that Kaderin is his Bride, the vampire equivalent of a mate, and he is overjoyed. Finally, something-someone-to live for! While Sebastian is celebrating and kissing her senseless, Kaderin is freaking the hell out. She’s kissing a vampire. She was kissing vampire. 

The Valkyrie covens were at war with vampires even now, and the Lore was hurtling towards an Accession-a war that occurred every five hundred years. During times like this, Kaderin was expected to be ridding vampires from the earth, not riding them.

Completely out of her depth and wondering what the hell is going on with her, Kaderin bails and leaves Sebastian with a bad case of the blue balls. But he takes it in stride. Sebastian now knows that he has a Bride, someone to make eternity bearable. All he needs to do is find her and convince her to give them a shot. Easier said than done, especially when Sebastian finds out that Kaderin is competing in the Talisman’s Hie, a deadly competition between Lore creatures.

The chemistry between Kaderin and Sebastian was sizzling from the get go. But the actual emotional connection took a lot longer and that was mainly because Kaderin was a bit of a bitch. This isn’t to say that I didn’t like Kaderin; I just didn’t appreciate how she treated Sebastian. Here was this sweet, attentive guy who was willing to enter a harrowing competition just to win her affections, and she just kept blowing him off! She got better but I’m still not quite willing to forgive her for being such a shrew. Sebastian, on the other hand, could not have been more sweet. I’m usually a sucker for a bad boy, but there is just something so endearing about a big, tough guy who’s unsure of himself. I just wanted to give him a hug. And then jump his bones.

Kresley Cole has created an amazing, complex world with this series. The romance is sweet, the sex is hot, and the characters are chock full of awesome. Definitely a must-read for paranormal romance fans. You can get it for next to nothing at ebooks.com.   

Holy Wow Wednesday: Str8te Boys

Hi all! This week I’ve decided to give you guys a little snippet from Str8te Boys by Evangeline Anderson for Holy Wow Wednesday. While it may not be the best M/M book I’ve ever read, it’s a sweet story with some pretty steamy love scenes. This make out session between Mav and Duke is brought on by a game of extreme gay chicken, and it gets seriously freakin’ hot. That being said, though, it isn’t crazy explicit. So if you’re new to this genre it’s not the kind of thing that will shock your sensibilities too badly.

“Now what?” he asked, as soon as he was completely naked under the covers. 

“Now… since you’re the champion and I’m the challenger I’ll start,” Duke decided. “I’m gonna touch you. If you give, I win, just like usual. ‘K?”

“Uh-huh.” Mav’s heart was thundering in his ears and his cock was aching. He could feel the warm wetness of precome beading at the slit of his broad head and he could barely breathe he was so turned on. When was the last time he’d been so hot? He couldn’t remember ever feeling this way, feeling like he was going to explode if his friend didn’t touch him soon.

“Okay.” Duke shifted beside him and suddenly a warm hand was gripping his shaft under the covers. “Too gay for you, buddy?” Duke breathed.

“Huh-uh. Not really,” Mav managed to whisper. He was trying to hold still, trying not to thrust into his friend’s hand, but it was damn hard not to when when every instinct in his body was shouting that he had to thrust, that he needed to come.

“How about if I do this…” Duke started a slow, sensual stroke along the hard ridge of his cock. “While I do this…” He leaned down and kissed Mav lightly on the mouth.

Mav parted his lips at once and Duke’s tongue was there, probing delicately, licking hungrily. He groaned, unable to help himself, as the warm pleasure of his friend’s hand on his cock became unbearable. Duke swallowed the soft sound eagerly and stroked harder, more urgently.

God, can’t believe he’s kissing me while he jerks me off. If he doesn’t stop soon I’m gonna come! Mav didn’t know if he wanted his friend to stop or not. But when Duke did stop, breaking the kiss and pulling away slightly as his hand ceased it’s delicious stroking, he felt a wash of disappointment.

“Too gay?” Duke panted the words. “Do you give, Mav?”

“No way-I don’t give,” Mav said emphatically. “There’s no way you can win, man. I’m not backing down.” He deliberately made his words challenging, wondering what Duke would think of next. He didn’t have to wonder for long.

“Neither am I,” Duke murmured in his ear. He shifted position again and this time he was above Mav. straddling him in the dark. “Spread your legs,” he commanded in a hoarse voice.

“What for, man?” For the first time Mav felt uneasy. After all, there were limits. He wasn’t going to let his roommate fuck him, no matter how hot and bothered he was.

“Not what you’re thinking,” Duke assured him. “C’mon, Mav, trust me. Just spread.”

Reluctantly, Mav did as his best friend asked, opening his legs even though it made him feel strangely vulnerable.

With a soft sigh, Duke arranged himself so his thighs were inside Mav’s and then lowered himself slowly.

Mav took in a deep, hissing breath when he felt the heated shaft of his best friend’s cock settle flush against his own. “God… Duke!” he gasped.

Duke froze in position but his voice was low and taunting in Maverick’s ear. “That’s my cock rubbing against yours, roomie,” he murmured in Mav’s ear. “Too fay for you? Do you give?”

And you will have to read the rest of the book to find out who won this round. Have an awesome week, guys!  

Scandalous Brides: A Beginner’s Guide to Rakes

A Beginner's Guide to Rakes

A Beginner’s Guide to Rakes

A Risque Business

All of London is abuzz with the return of the utterly alluring, recently widowed Diane Benchley. Will she remarry? What will she do with her late husband’s fortune? Society is shocked by her announcement-at the Grand Ball, of all places!-that she plans to open an exclusive gentleman’s gaming club in the family mansion. But no one is more stunned than the Marquis of Haybury, Oliver Warren.

An Indecent Proposal

Years ago, Oliver and Diane shared a private indiscretion. Now Diane threatens to reveal Oliver’s most ungentlemanly secrets… unless he agrees to help her. A notorious gambler-and rake-Oliver is overqualified to educate Diane in the ways and means of running her establishment. But striking a deal with Diane might just be the biggest risk Oliver has ever taken. This time, the only thing he has to lose is his heart…

A Beginner’s Guide to Rakes is the first book in the Scandalous Brides series, and it was nothing short of brilliant. Couple a sarcastic, smarty-pants heroine with a charming, bad boy hero and you have one hell of a story. Every once in a while, a book comes along that really really reminds me why I love to read. This was one of those books.

Our leads, Diane Benchley and Oliver Warren, have a past. And it is this past that has made the two somewhat… hostile towards one another. Diane’s late husband gambled away their fortune and left them destitute. Then the bastard went and died, leaving her in the lurch. Oliver bailing on her was the final straw, and it taught her a valuable lesson: you can’t trust anyone, least of all a man. So Diane vowed that she would rely only on herself, and endeavored to get herself out of the mess her dearly-departed husband left her in. See, Diane has this grand master plan: she’s going to do something so scandalous that no one is going to be able to resist coming to see what’s the what. Dianne is going to open a gentleman’s club staffed almost exclusively by… women. Diane has everything all planned out. There’s only more thing she needs to make sure her plan is foolproof, and that is Oliver Warren. Much as Dianne would rather avoid Oliver, there is no denying that the man knows his stuff when it comes to gambling and the like. And luckily for Diane, she has a little something to blackmail Oliver with should he prove reluctant. Boy, was he really super reluctant.

This book was really so much fun. I loved the witty and sarcastic barbs Oliver and Diane exchanged. I also liked that Diane wasn’t just willing to fall into Oliver’s arms the second he showed up. He hurt her and it was going to take time for him to earn her trust. I have to be honest, Diane totally outshone Oliver for me. I enjoyed his character, I thought he was very charming, but he didn’t have the same ooomph as Diane. I think it’s pretty hard for authors of historical romances to create kickass heroines without resorting to cliches (take the hot, petite chick dressing up like a young boy as an example). Enoch managed to create a no-nonsense leading lady without having to resort to any of the tropes so common in the genre.

I absolutely adored this book. It was so much fun. Diane was the perfect mix of sassy yet vulnerable, and Oliver managed to balance his devil-may-care charm with sincerity. I would definitely recommend this book if you’re looking for an original take on historical romance. You can get it over at Amazon or at Kobo. It’s actually cheaper at Kobo, but I heard that they did something (no clue what) and pissed a bunch of people off. If you are boycotting them, Amazon is the place to go.

Str8te Boys

Str8te Boys

Str8te Boys

How far would you dare to go… to win it all?

Maverick Holms and Duke Warren share almost everything-a college soccer team, an apartment and and the same extremely competitive nature. Thanks to that never-back-down spirit, they’re about to share more than they bargained for.

The game is “gay chicken”. The rule: get as close as possible without kissing, and the one that pulls away first is the loser. The problem: neither of them likes to lose. It isn’t long before the game becomes an excuse to touch and kiss in every possible forbidden way. And after they pose for a gay website to earn extra money, things really heat up.

Suddenly Duke is talking lifetime commitment, and Mav is backpedaling as hard as he can, not sure if he’s ready to accept all his best friend is offering him. Or the truth about what he is.

Warning: Hot M/M sex inside. Do not open this book if you don’t like the idea of two deliciously muscular best friends becoming lovers.

Str8te Boys is a reread for me. I first read it when I was just breaking in to the M/M genre, and it was a cute story. Definitely not the best written thing you’ll ever read, but it had a sweet friends-to-lovers theme. If you’re a stranger to gay romance, I’d recommend trying this book out for your first time. The sex is hot without being uber-explicit.

Mav and Duke have been best friends pretty much since their first day of university. They both play on the soccer team and they’ve been roommates for years. Mav is the serious, studious one while Duke is the life of every party. He’s loud, happy and a little on the touchy-feely side. Mav doesn’t mind; it’s something he’s gotten used to over the years. Only lately, Duke has been getting extra touchy-feely. Like, beyond what’s normal for best friends. Their relationship is bordering on the *shudder, gasp* gay. The story starts when it’s revealed that Duke has spent their rent money on weed. Now Duke and Mav need to come up with the money or end up sleeping on the street. That’s when a friend recommends that they apply for a modelling gig. The catch? It will be for a gay website called “Str8te Boys”. Mav is less than enthusiastic but, as Duke points out, rather that than being homeless. Mav agrees and that’s when things start to escalate. Things had been a little… strange… between Mav and Duke for a while, but after the photo shoot things get hot. 

The thing with this book is that it’s really short, about eighty or so pages. There wasn’t enough time to go in-depth with the characters or their situation. Another thing that bugged me was the whole “gay chicken” concept. I had no idea people actually did that so it seemed a little contrived to me. In terms of the characters, I thought they were okay. The whole book was from Mav’s perspective so we only saw Duke as Mav saw him. I liked Duke. I thought he was really sweet, although I do question his judgement for springing the “Lets spend our lives together” on a guy who still considered himself straight. As for Mav… well, I thought he was a bit of an idiot. But a sweet idiot, so it was mostly okay.

Like I said, not the most wow-inspiring book out there. But it’s sweet. I know I keep using that word, but that was exactly what this was. So if you feel like a light, fluffy, quick read and if two hot guys making out revs your engine, give this book a go. You can get it over at Books A Million.

Holy Wow Wednesday: A Hunger Like No Other

Hi all! I know that I’ve been slacking off with the Holy Wow feature the last few weeks, but I haven’t really seen or read anything that’s completely blown my mind. Luckily, though, Kresley Cole has changed that. You may remember that I said the sex in A Hunger Like No Other was crazy hot, so I’ve decided to share some of it with you. If this little snippet doesn’t have you racing to buy this book, nothing will.

This is the first time Emma and Lachlain have actually had sex, although they’ve had sexy time before, and it doubles as a sort of claiming ritual. Lachlain is a bit of a talker which, coupled with the accent, makes him so extremely hot. 

To her relief, he stopped thrusting, though she wondered how he had when she could feel his body shaking all around her, his shaft so huge and throbbing within her. 

He drew her up as he went to his knees, putting her back against his chest and taking her arms to guide them up around his neck, locking them there. “Hold on tae me.”

When she nodded, he skimmed his fingers from her shoulders over her breasts and down, then dipped both of his hands to cup and stroke her between her legs. When her wetness returned in a rush, he still refrained from thrusting. Instead he thumbed her nipples and palmed her breasts for long, long moments until she was panting again, feeling a desperate lust like she had when he’d teased her that night in the bathroom. No, worse than that, because now she knew exactly what she’d been missing.

Remembering her frustration that night and fearing he’d subject her to that again, she wriggled her hips against him.

He growled low in her ear, “Do you want more?”

“Y-yes.”

“Go tae your hands again… let me give it to you.”

As soon as she did, he clutched her hips, slowly withdrew, then eased deeper within her. She cried out, this time in pleasure. When she arched her back and worked her knees wide again, he groaned her name in answer, but his voice had changed. Still deep but guttural, grating. Almost… snarling.

Another thrust inside her, this time more forceful. Groans, growling. Hers as well?

Thoughts were growing dim as the pleasure increased. Each measured withdrawal made her whimper, each time his skin slapped against hers as he bucked into her made her cry out for more. Her lips curled when the air charged with electricity, and she gloried in the sky, in the scents, in Lachlain wedged deep inside her. He stretched down over her back, and she felt his mouth on her neck. Felt his bite, but not like hers, not piercing the skin, but she reveled in it as if she’d accomplished it.

“Going tae come so hard,” he snarled against her skin, “you’ll feel it like a thrust of my cock.”

She climaxed once more, screaming in ecstasy to the sky, throwing her head back to his shoulder, wanting his mouth at her neck.

“Ah, God, yes,” he yelled, then returned to his bite… She did feel him ejaculate, forcefully, pumping his seed so hotly inside her.

Yet when he was finished, he didn’t stop thrusting.

Chapter 26, page 254-255

This scene carries on for at least three more pages. It was smoking. All I can say is that Emma is one lucky, lucky, girl.   

Immortals After Dark: A Hunger Like No Other

A Hunger Like No Other

A Hunger Like No Other

A mythic warrior who will stop at nothing to possess her…

After enduring years of torture from the vampire Horde, Lacklain MacRieve, leader of the Lykae Clan, is enraged to find the predestined mate he’s been waiting millennia for is a vampire. Or partly one. This Emmaline is a small, ethereal half Valkyrie/half vampire, who somehow begins to soothe the fury burning within him.

A vampire captured by her wildest fantasy…

Sheltered Emmaline Troy sets out to uncover the truth about her deceased parents-until a powerful Lykae claims her as his mate and forces her back to his ancestral Scottish castle. There, her fear of the Lykae-and their notorious dark desire-ebbs as he begins a slow, wicked seduction to sate her dark cravings.

An all-consuming desire…

Yet when an ancient evil from her past resurfaces, will their desire deepen into a love that can bring a proud warrior to his knees and turn a gentle beauty into the fighter she was born to be?

I had heard some really good things about Kresley Cole, so I was pretty sure this book would be good. I was wrong… the word “good” doesn’t even come close to describing this book. It was amazing. Everything was just right there. The universe, the story line, the romance and chemistry between the lead characters. And my review would not be complete if I didn’t mention the sex scenes. They were insanely hot. Like, really. Wow.

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I started with this book. The blurb mentions “Valkyrie” and “Lykae” and I had no idea what the hell either of those things were. Turns out the Lykae are a little like werewolves and the Valkyrie are these warrior women who reminded me of the Amazons. They all belong to the Lore, which is basically the supernatural world. Here’s the thing, though: these two species do not like each other. Which leaves our two leads in a bit of a pickle. Lachlain MacGrieve is an all-round badass and the leader of the Lykae. He’s been tortured by the evil vampiric Horde for the last one hundred and fifty years. He’s really messed up, both physically and mentally, and he loathes vampires. In his opinion, the only good leach is a dead one. And when he meets his mate, the sweet little half vampire/half Valkyrie Emmaline Troy, he is beyond pissed off. Emma is the very definition of meek and mild. She does not want to rock the boat; all she wants is to learn more about her birth parents. But Emma’s demure demeanor is put to the test when she meets a pushy, arrogant and domineering Lykae with a super bad attitude. Emma and Lachlain’s relationship is not an easy one in the beginning. Lachlain was rude, and bossy, and just plain mean. And then something amazing happened: he started being nice. And then he started being really sweet. And then I totally wanted to jump him. Emma underwent a major transition, too. She went from being timid and shy to being fierce and strong. It got to the point where she was actually willing to call Lachlain, a man she was once terrified of, on his shit and give him the what-for. Emma managed to prove not only to her scary-ass Valkyrie aunts that she’s tough, she managed to prove to herself that she was a strong woman. And I loved that.

It took a little while for me to warm up to Lachlain. In fact, I could have strangled him for a couple of the things he said and did to Emma. But when he decided that he loved Emma, he just became this marshmallow. Except when he was in the bedroom. There he became a beast. It didn’t excuse him from his past behaviour, but he certainly made up for it. I won’t say much more about Emma; suffice to say, I loved her. I also adored her equally parts scary and crazy aunts, especially Nix and Regin. I can’t wait to learn more about the Valkyrie. They sound like a lot of fun. Hell, I can’t wait to get further into this series!

I highly recommend that you head on over to Sony’s ebook store and get started on this series. I promise, it will be money well spent.

 

Highland Pleasures: Lady Isabella’s Scandalous Marriage

Lady Isabella's Scandalous Marriage

Lady Isabella’s Scandalous Marriage

Six years ago, eighteen-year-old Lady Isabella Scranton scandalized all of London by eloping the night of her come-out ball with the notorious rake, Lord Mac Mackenzie. After three turbulent years of marriage, she scandalized London yet again-this time by leaving him.

Now the reformed Mac has returned, and he wants one thing: Isabella back in his life, his house, his bed. He’ll do anything he has to, play any game, as long as he gets her back. Isabella resists, but when she agrees to pose for erotic paintings he’s been working on, she realizes her body has never stopped craving her husband’s very skilled touch. Mac is determined to show Isabella he’s a changed man, but three years without her has only increased his hunger for her.

When an ingenious painter with designs on Mac’s paintings, and Isabella herself, comes dangerously near, Mac sets himself up as Isabella’s protector and vows to never leave her side, whether his independent and proud lady likes it or not.

Jennifer Ashley can quite easily become my favourite historical romance author. This series is so incredibly well-written, I am in utter awe of Ashley’s ability. She manages to create characters who are awesome on their own and, when you put them together, their chemistry is off the charts.

I didn’t enjoy Lady Isabella’s Scandalous Marriage quite as much as I enjoyed the first book, but that is not to say that this book wasn’t off the charts awesome. Lady Isabella and her husband, Mac Mackenzie, have always had a rather tumultuous relationship. They first met at Isabella’s debut ball where, after only having known each other a few hours, they skipped the rest of the party to go and get married. It caused a major stir in London, and set precedent for the rest of their married life: Lots of impulsive decisions that get people talking and occasionally came to bite them in their rear ends. Their relationship is also characterised by either fighting like cat and dog, or humping like bunnies. There was no disputing that they loved one another; it’s just that they could never find any middle ground. It was one extreme or another. Finally, it all became too much and Isabella told Mac that she’d had enough. It’s been three years since Isabella called it quits and both of them are miserable. They do their best to pretend that they don’t really miss each other, but they fall a little short. And then, they’re forced back into one another’s company when Isabella discovers that someone is forging Mac’s paintings. Mac doesn’t seem to care one way or another, but Isabella is determined to find out what’s going on. However, Mac catches an abrupt wake up when he realises that the dude mimicking his artwork isn’t as benign as he first seemed…

I loved Mac and Isabella together. There were such sweet moments between them and you could tell, despite how long they’d been apart, that they still loved each other as much as they did when they were blissful newlyweds. That being said, though, there were moments where I was a bit frustrated with Isabella. I thought that she was a little indecisive; she couldn’t seem to make up her mind about what she wanted. That is honestly the only thing I can think of that detracted from this book. Otherwise, it was as good as I’m coming to expect from Ms Ashley.

I’ve looked around and the cheapest place to get this book is over at Kobo. I really recommend giving this series a try. It’s epic!

Midnight Breeds: Veil of Midnight

Veil of Midnight

Veil of Midnight

Bound by blood, addicted to danger, they’ll enter the darkest-and most erotic-place of all…

A warrior trained in bullets and blades, Renata cannot be bested by any man-vampire or mortal. But her most powerful weapon is her extraordinary psychic ability-a gift both rare and deadly. Now a stranger threatens her hard-won independence, a golden-haired vampire who lures her into a realm of darkness… and pleasure beyond imagining.

A combat loving adrenaline-junkie, Nikolai dispenses his own justice to enemies of the Breed-and his latest quarry is a ruthless assassin. One woman stands in his way: the seductive, cool-as-ice bodyguard, Renata. But Renata’s powers are put to the test when a loved one, a child, is threatened and she’s forced to turn to Niko for help. As the two join forces, as desire fans the flames of a deeper hunger, Renata’s life is under siege by a man who offers the exquisite pleasure of a blood bond-and a passion that could save or doom them both forever…  

I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this book. For the most part, it was a little predictable. I’ll admit, I was getting frustrated with this series and Ms Adrian. It was like, “Can we please have a little more ooomph here, please?” And then something happened towards the end that woke me up and got me a little more interested for the next book.

But before I get to the next book in this series, let me tell you about Veil of Midnight. Our leading lady, Renata, is quite a badass. She has the ability to make vampires heads hurt… bad. I imagine it to be sort of like a seizure. And, as a result of this neat little trick, she has earned the not-so-coveted position of body guard to Sergei Yakut, a Gen One vampire with a sadistic steak as wide as my butt. She’s also assigned herself the role as protector for Mira, a little girl with an amazing psychic ability. Sergei is of great interest to our hero, Nikolai. The Order has received word that someone is out killing all the remaining Gen One vampires. Nikolai has been sent to look for Sergei in Toronto to warn him of the impending danger and to protect him. That’s when he first catches a glimpse of the lovely Renata. Unfortunately, their first meeting does not go well and Renata puts him flat on his back, and not in the fun way. Nikolai’s face and ego are a little bruised, but he’s fascinated by the tough-as-nails Renata. There’s just one problem: Sergei Yakut. Nikolai sees how he treats the his staff and family, but as much as he’d like to kill the bastard, he can’t; it’s his responsibility to ensure Sergei keeps breathing.

The romance between Nikolai and Renata progresses pretty much as you’d expect with declarations of love and minor misunderstandings that are quickly cleared up with more “I love yous”. While that was fairly yawn-inducing, the interesting part came with Andreas Richen, the leader of the Berlin (as least, I think it’s Berlin) Darkhaven. This guy loses his shit in a big way and I’m interested in seeing what’s going to happen with him.

If you feel like giving this book a go, you can get it at Diesel’s ebook store.

Book of the Month: September

I’m a little bit late posting the book of the month for September… sorry about that. Last week I didn’t really have the time or the inclination and I only remembered this morning that I hadn’t done it yet. But, at long last, here it is. I had a little trouble deciding between The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley and Catch a Ghost by SE Jakes. Both very different but both off-the-charts epic. In the end, though, I decided to go with Catch a Ghost. I cannot remember the last time I just sat in my room and plowed through a book the way I did with this one. This was a really fun story and I definitely recommend giving it a try.  This scene takes place soon after Tommy and Prophet are put on assignment together. They’re not too keen on one another, but their boss has made it quite clear that he expects them to work together. So they’re trying to just grin and bear it.

Whenever there was a ruckus at security, it was usually Prophet’s fault, so it was odd to see one already in progress as he walked toward the area with a soda as big as his head. And he was going to get through with the damn drink. Somehow.  “What’s going on?” he asked the TSA agent, who shrugged, checked his ID, and let him through. It was an odd time for a flight, so the airport terminal was quiet. Except for Tom, who waved his arms as he talked to security.  Prophet heard Tom’s choice curses in what Prophet assumed was Cajun French, and walked over to rescue his partner.  Who was actually supposed to be keeping Prophet out of trouble.  He wanted to video this and send it to Phil. Better yet, put it up on YouTube. But by the time he’d gotten close-because he’d argued about keeping the soda with the second agent, telling her about hypoglycemia and the fact that it was only three ounces of soda and a lot of ice, and lost, and goddammit, someone owed him-Tom had disappeared. He pulled out the Air Marshal badge he’d gotten for emergencies like this one-and also because he was more than qualified to help out if there was any trouble on a flight-and asked the female guard, “That guy’s with me. What’s the problem?” “He was randomly chosen for a pat-down. We found his piercings, and now he’s putting himself through the X-ray machine,” she said wearily, like she’d seen it all before. And Prophet could only shrug in sympathy as they watched Tom climbing onto the conveyor belt and lying down flat on his back. She motioned for Prophet to follow her. As Tom’s X-ray came through the machine, Prophet almost bit off his tongue. Clear nipple piercings and slightly more blurry cock piercings. Jesus, he hadn’t expected that. He swallowed hard, and a second agent spluttered, “Holy shit.” And then Tom was out, smirking at Prophet and the agents. “I told you they’re attached,” Tom said, starting to unzip his jeans.”Want me to show you?” Prophet wasn’t sure which of them he was talking to, but he assumed it was security. To her credit, the female guard merely said, “Actually, yes, sir. I won’t be the lucky one today, but you’re still going to need a full body search.” Tom rolled his eyes, said,”Of course I am,” under his breath. “The ladies like that?” a male agent asked Tommy. “Men like it more,” Tom told him, which confirmed to Prophet that the physical yank he’d felt toward the man hadn’t been his imagination. Fucking accent. Kindle Location: 447 of 3820

I’m not going to go into it too much, or else we’ll be here forever, but I adored Tommy and Prophet. They are both so damaged and messed up, and I can’t help but root for them. And I know that once you read this book, you will too.  

Midnight Breeds: Midnight Rising

Midnight Rising

Midnight Rising

In a world of shadows and dark, consuming hungers, desire is the deadliest weapon…

Fueled by pain and anger over a shattering betrayal, the warrior Rio has pledged his life to the war against the Rogues. He will let nothing stand in his way-least of all a mortal woman with the power to expose the entire vampire race. But now an ancient evil has been awakened, and a stunning darkness is on the rise.

For journalist Dylan Alexander, it began with the discovery of a hidden tomb. Suddenly she is at the center of a gathering storm of violence and secrets. But nothing is as dangerous as the scarred, lethally seductive man who rises from the shadows to plunge her into his world of dark desire and endless night. Here she is powerless to resist Rio’s touch, even as she uncovers a shocking link to her own past. Now Dylan must choose: Leave Rio’s midnight dream, or risk it all for the man who has shown her true passion and the infinite pleasures of the heart.

Midnight Rising is book four in the Midnight Breeds series by Lara Adrian. I was quite keen on reading this book. Poor Rio had had a really rough time of it for the past few months-what with his mate proving to be a treacherous bitch-so if anyone deserved a happily ever after, it was him. But I just didn’t feel it. Maybe it was too soon for him to be moving on? I can’t put my finger on what it is, but this book just didn’t do it for me.

Midnight Awakening takes place five months after Midnight Rising and starts us off in the Czech Republic. Our leading lady, Dylan, is on holiday there when she is approached by a ghost. This is no big deal for Dylan; she’s been seeing ghosts for most of her life. It’s creepy but not something that really phases her. Anyway, this ghost is pretty insistent that Dylan go up the mountain, off the trail, because there is someone up there in dire need of saving. Dylan, being the nice girl that she is, can’t in good conscience wonder off and just let whatever is about to happen happen. So she follows the ghost’s instructions and there she comes across a completely Loony Tunes Rio. Our favourite Spaniard is in a really sorry state. He’s been living in that dark, dirty cave for five months. He hasn’t been outside, he hasn’t eaten and he hasn’t had any blood. When he decided to stay in the Czech Republic, it was with the idea of ending his misery. But for some reason he just couldn’t bring himself to do it. And, as is typical, just when Rio has decided that today is the day, Dylan shows up and takes some compromising pictures of the cave. These pictures have the potential to blow the entire vampire race’s cover. It’s thus Rio’s responsibility to chase after Dylan and destroy the photos.

I seem to have an odd relationship with Ms Adrian’s books: when I have low expectations, the book completely blows my mind; when I’m dying of excitement, the book lets me down. So, from now on, no more expectations. I just found this whole book so… boring. I didn’t feel the chemistry between the main characters at all, and Rio was actually beginning to irritate me. I’m going to sound completely insensitive saying this, but he came across as a bit whiny. Dylan as a heroine wasn’t too awful, but I just didn’t connect with her.

I found this book a little bit on the “meh” side, but if you feel like giving it a try, you can get it at Diesel’s ebook store.

The Psy-Changeling Series: Mine to Possess

Mine to Possess

Mine to Possess

Clay Bennett is a powerful DarkRiver sentinel, but he grew up in the slums with his human mother, never knowing his changeling father. As a young boy without the bonds of Pack he tried to stifle his animal nature. He failed… and committed the most extreme act of violence, killing a man and losing his best friend, Talin, in the bloody aftermath. Everything good in him died the day he was told that she, too, was dead.

Talin McCade barely survived a childhood drenched in bloodshed and terror. Now a new nightmare is stalking her life-the street children she works to protect are disappearing and turning up dead. Determined to keep them safe, she unlocks the deepest secret in her heart, and steels herself to ask the help of the strongest man she knows…

Clay lost Talin once. He will not let her go again, his hunger to possess her is a clawing need born of the leopard within. As they race to save the innocent, Clay and Talin must face the violent truths of their past, or risk losing everything that ever mattered.

I am quite a big fan of Ms Singh’s so I couldn’t wait to start in on Mine to Possess. It’s been sitting on my to-be-read pile for what feels like forever, but it was well worth the wait. The world Singh has created is absolutely fascinating. It just gets more and more detailed and complex as the series progresses.

Clay is a high-ranking member of DarkRiver, a sentinel charged with protecting his pack. However, despite his position, Clay is a bit of a loner. He’s got this anger building inside him and he’s on the verge of just giving up on his humanity and going leopard full time. He wasn’t always like this, though. While he’s always had this darkness inside him, there was a time where he was a little more lighthearted. Talin, his childhood best friend, accepted him without question. They were once inseparable. Until the day Clay became aware of the abuse Talin was suffering at the hands of her foster father. In a fury, he killed the bastard right in front of Talin and Clay was later taken to a juvenile detention centre. Clay accepted it, believing that once he’d served his time he would be able to see Talin again. He was devastated upon hearing that Talin was dead, and for a long time he seemed to be lost in that darkness inside himself. So you can understand his shock when Talin suddenly shows up in his life, alive and well. Talin is damaged. The things her foster father did to her, coupled with losing Clay left her in a bad place. When she finally felt like she was moving forward, she found out that Clay was being released from his prison. She knew Clay would come for her, so she made the decision to have the authorities tell him that she had died. But now she needs Clay’s help. The street children she’s responsible are being killed and the enforcement agency is making no effort to catch the killer.

My love for this series is actually stemming more from the universe that Singh has created than from a real passion for the characters. Don’t get me wrong, the characters are awesome. We got to see Talin transform from a scared little girl into a strong woman; we got to see a softer side to Clay that you would never have suspected was there. All of that was great. But those snippets into the inner workings of the Psy Council and how the whole system is being shaken up is… riveting. Singh manages to make important changes to the universe her series is set in with every book and I am so excited to see what’s going to happen next!

If you’re keen on reading Mine to Possess-and you really should be-you can head on over to Foyles.

The Adventurers’ Club: The Care and Taming of a Rogue

The Care and Taming of a Rogue

The Care and Taming of a Rogue

How to tell if a man is an unrepentant rogue:

1. He has no patience for frivolous debutantes.

2. He kisses you after a single dance.

3. He makes you forget yourself and kiss him back…

After years away from London, Captain Bennett Wolfe is back-and alive, much to Society’s surprise. Having been presumed dead, this rugged adventurer is much sought after by every marriage-minded young woman… but Bennett only has eyes for the intriguing Lady Phillipa Eddison.

Phillipa would rather read than flirt, but she does know a thing or two about proper courtship rituals. A gentleman does not kiss a lady senseless, and he certainly does not bring his pet monkey when he comes calling. Lady Phillipa’s never been so scandalized… or tempted. She simply must teach Bennett some manners-before she succumbs to temptation as wild as the man who offers it.

The Care and Taming of a Rogue is book one in the Adventurers’ Club and I enjoyed it for the most part. There were bits and pieces, though, that kind of irritated me. The biggest issue I had with this book was Bennett Wolfe, the hero. I started out liking him, but the more I read and the more I thought about it, the more he struck me as a bit of a bully. And that diminished my enjoyment of this story.

Bennett Wolfe lost his parents at an early age and is used to taking care of himself. He’s never been one for frivolity, which makes London and Society his least favourite places in the world. As soon as he was old enough, he left England and went on a number of expeditions around the world. He most recently traveled to the Congo, where he was very nearly killed. Now three years after he last set foot in London, Bennett is back… and boy, is he in for a surprise. Not only did his second-in-command during the expedition leave him behind in the Congo, the man plagiarised his work and wrote a book portraying Bennett as a bumbling oaf. Also, he spread a pesky rumour that Bennett was dead. Needless to say, Bennett is not a happy camper. There is one bright spot in the dreariness that is London, though: Lady Phillipa Eddison. Phillipa is what Society calls a “bluestocking”; she prefers books to people and finds Society unbearably boring. So imagine her excitement at meeting the famous explorer Bennett Wolfe, the man whose books she’s read a number of times. And imagine her surprise when she realises that he finds her just as intriguing as she finds him.

I found that I could relate to Phillipa. She’s a booknerd in every sense and topics like fashion and flirting are beyond her comprehension. Rather than looking forward to the next big soiree, Phillipa just wants to be at home with a book. So when Bennett started paying attention to her, she was a little taken aback. Typically, men tend to gravitate towards her older, more sociable, sister. I found that I enjoyed Bennett’s character in the beginning. But as the book progressed, I found him to be a little bit of a bully. Phillipa had never had a beau, so her experience with physical and emotional intimacy was nil. There were moments where Bennett came on really strong and he kept telling her that he was being really patient, like he expected a noddy badge or something. It was just something that bothered me and it kept me from really enjoying this book as much as I wanted to.

In all, a little disappointing but I enjoyed Ms Enoch’s writing. If you’re looking to give this book and Ms Enoch a try, you can get this book at Foyles.

Midnight Breeds: Midnight Awakening

Midnight Awakening

Midnight Awakening

He has resisted temptation for centuries, a stone-cold warrior whose frozen heart refuses to thaw-until her…

With a dagger in her hand and vengence on her mind, Darkhaven beauty Elise Chase prowls Boston’s streets in search of retribution against the Rogue vampires who took from her everything she cherished. Using an extraordinary psychic gift, she tracks her prey, well aware that the power she possesses is destroying her. She must learn to harness this gift, and for that she can turn to only one man-the deadliest of the Breed warriors, Tegan.

No stranger to loss, Tegan knows Elise’s pain. He knows fury, but when he slays his enemies it is with ice in his veins. He is perfect in his self-control, until Elise seeks his aid in her personal war. An unholy alliance is forged-a bond that will link them by blood and vow-and plunge them into a tempest of danger, desire, and the darkest passions of the heart…

Midnight Awakening is book three in the Midnight Breeds series by Lara Adrian. I’ll admit, I wasn’t particularly looking forward to this book. Tegan, our hero, is a Gen One vampire who seemed to me to be in dire need of an attitude adjustment, and Elise, our heroine, is a widowed Breedmate who struck me as a bit of a wuss. So I started this book with some pretty low expectations. But since I flat out refuse to skip books in a series, I sucked it up and started reading. Imagine my surprise when I found this to be the best book of the series.

We met Elise in Kiss of Crimson, which took place four months before Midnight Awakening. She had just lost her son and she was determined to get revenge. So she left her Darkhaven (the community where most vampire live) and made her way in the human world. She taught herself how to fight, and how to kill, the Rogues who were responsible for murdering her son. She does pretty well for awhile-until she bites off more than she can chew. She ends up taking on more Rogues than she can handle, and things start looking pretty grim… until Tegan swoops in to save the day. Once Tegan realises who he’s saved, you could have knocked him over with a feather. “Gobsmacked” doesn’t even begin to cover it. But Tegan’s got his own crap to deal with and if this chick is on a suicide mission, that’s none of his business. He walks away, not expecting to see Elise again. However, circumstances take a turn for the worse-or the better-and Elise and Tegan find themselves stuck together in extremely close quarters. Closer than either are comfortable with.

While the Order’s headquarters are in Boston, most of the story took place in Berlin. It was here that we saw some of the familiar faces and met some new ones. Among the old favourites is Rio, the sexy Spaniard whose mate turned out to be a crazy bitch. His mental state has not improved since we last saw him. Sterling Chase has joined the Order and has gone from straight-laced and buttoned-up to being brooding bad boy. The new faces include two more new recruits, Kade and Brock. We haven’t learned much about them beyond the fact that they’re friends with Nikolai (swoon) and they love a good fight. I’ve saved the most sexiest newbie for last: Andreas Reichen. Oh, my yum. This guy is fine. He’s the leader of the Belin Darkhaven and I cannot wait to see more of this guy.

Never have I been so happy to be wrong. I prematurely judged our leads and if it weren’t for my slight case of OCD, I would have missed what I honestly feel is the best book in the series so far. That’ll learn me not to be judge-y.

If you’re looking to read Midnight Awakening-and I really think you should-you can buy it either at Diesel’s ebook store or over at Sony’s.

Lords of Deliverance: Rogue Rider

Rogue Rider

Rogue Rider

Jillian Cardiff came to this remote mountain town to forget the demon attack that almost killed her. Instead, she rescues-and falls for-a gorgeous stranger with no memory of anything other than his name. Handsome, charming, and protective, Reseph seems like the kind of man Jillian can trust. But with hints of a troubling history of his own, he’s also the kind of man who can be very dangerous…

Reseph may not know why he mysteriously appeared in Jillian’s life, but he knows he wants to stay. Yet when Jillian’s neighbors are killed, and demon hunters arrive on the scene, Reseph fears he’s putting Jillian in danger. And once it’s revealed that Reseph is also Pestilence, the Horseman responsible for ravaging the world, he and Jillian must face the greatest challenge of all: Can they forget the horrors of a chilling past to save the future they both desire? 

I had mixed emotions about this book. On the one hand, it’s by Larissa Ione and you guys know I love her stuff. But, on the other hand, this book felt a little bit… off. In fact, the first half of this book bored me to tears. It was a bit on the cliche side, and I found it a little too easy to guess what was going to happen next.

But enough whinging. Rogue Rider is the last book in the Lords of Deliverance portion of the Demonica series and deals with the final, formerly evil, Horseman of the Apocalypse. The last we saw Reseph, he’d shed his evil alter-ego and was being tortured down in hell. Then Reaver came along and freed Reseph from hell and gave him a temporary bout of amnesia. This is where our story starts. Jillian, our leading lady, finds Reseph in the snow. Starkers. Seriously, some people have all the luck. Anyhow, being the good Samaritan that she is, Jillian dredges him up and takes him home so he can stop with his snowman imitation. When Reseph wakes up, he’s a bit disorientated but otherwise doing pretty well for a guy lying around naked in below freezing tempretures. Jillian finds this a little… strange but she lets it go. She’s just relieved he’s not dead. Boy, is he not dead. Pretty much as soon as he’s awake, and not being confused as hell about how he came to be there, he’s making eyes at Jillian. The story moves on in a pretty predictable (and boring, much as I hate to say it) way, with the two slowly falling in love and Reseph eventually deciding that his past doesn’t matter. So, naturally, this is when said past decides to bite him in his shapely ass.

I was so majorly disappointed in this book. I loved Reseph and was really hoping for a grand tale of redemption and romance. The romance element was there, but it felt almost sickly sweet. There was a scene where Reseph got on stage to sing to Jillian. I know this was meant as a romantic gesture but it made me cringe a little. I’m really hoping that the next book in the series, Reaver, makes up for this one.

If you’re so inclined, you can get it at Sony.

Highland Pleasures: The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie

The year is 1881. Meet the Mackenzie family-rich, powerful, eccentric, dangerous. A lady couldn’t be seen with them without ruin. Rumors surround them-of tragic violence, of their mistresses, of their dark appetites, of scandals that set England and Scotland abuzz. 

The youngest brother, Ian, known as the Mad Mackenzie, spent most of his young life in an asylum, and everyone agrees he is decidedly odd. He’s also hard and handsome and has a penchant for Ming pottery and beautiful women.

Beth Ackerley, widow, has recently come into a fortune. She has decided that she wants no more drama in her life. She was raised in drama-an alcoholic father who drove them into the workhouse, a frail mother she had to nurse until her death, a fussy old lady she became constant companion to. No, she wants to take her money and find peace, to travel, to learn art, to sit back and fondly remember her brief but happy marriage to her late husband.

And then Ian Mackenzie decides he wants her.

Just a quick heads up on this one: I will be making squeaky fangirl-like noises with this book. The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie is without a doubt the best historical I have ever read. The chemistry between the main characters was off the charts, I adored the peripheral characters, and I emitted so many dreamy sighs that eventually people started looking at me funny. And you know what? I didn’t even care.

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie is the first book in the Highland Pleasures series and follows the mysterious Mackenzie brothers. The first book-surprise, surprise-is about Ian Mackenzie, the youngest brother. Ian is a little bit… strange. Actually, I think the best way to describe his personality would be to compare him to Sheldon Cooper: he has a brilliant mind but his people skills are a little iffy. But unlike Sheldon, Ian has a sex drive. And is totally, ridiculously hot. And tears you between wanting to give him a hug and jump his bones… Moving swiftly on, Ian had a really rough childhood. Being a little boy genius during that time was not easy, and his father was convinced that Ian was insane. As a result, he threw Ian into an asylum where he was subjected to horrific “scientific” procedures designed to make him act “normal”. Thankfully, as soon as the old bastard died, Ian’s older brothers got him the hell out of there. The closeness between the Mackenzie brothers was one of the many aspects of this book that I loved. They could argue and brawl with the best of them, but they would cheerfully ax murder anyone who threatened one of their brothers. Now, I’ve spoken a lot about Ian so let me move on to Beth. This woman was chock full of awesome. She was so patient with Ian. She never got irritated when he stopped listening to her or when he got distracted by something else. She didn’t give a continental damn what other people said about him. She looked beyond all the things that would have put other women off, and she found an utter gem. She is my favourite heroine out of any historical that I’ve read, and probably in my top twenty heroines in general.

I was actually disappointed when I finished with with this book. I mean, normally you read a book and you enjoy it. You’ll laugh and sigh and grumble, and then you’ll move on to the next book where you’ll do the same thing. And that’s fine. But with this book, I felt it. There were scenes where I could almost literally feel my heart wrench. And no, I’m not exaggerating. The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie was that good.

I think I’m going to stop here. I’m actually finding it a little hard to write this; I don’t think I’m quite doing this book the justice it deserves. Just trust me and go read it. You will definitely not regret it. The cheapest place to get it right now is over at Kobo.

Holy Wow Wednesday: Tyler Hoechlin

I’ll admit it; I caved. I started watching a programme with the silliest name in tv history. Teen Wolf. I mean, really? Why would you name your show that? It simply begs to be mocked. In any case, I started watching and I found it to be a little like crack. It is damn near impossible to stop watching once you’ve started. And it is in large part because of this gorgeous creature: Tyler Hoechlin, who stars as the brooding Derek Hale. He really has a beautiful face, to say nothing of that physique. Take a look for yourself…

tyler hoechlin 11

tyler hoechlin 20And now for my favourite bit…

Please feel free to spend some time staring. Have a good rest of the week, everybody!

 

Dark Dynasties: Dark Awakening

Dark Awakening

Dark Awakening

For centuries, shape-shifting vampire Tynan MacGillivray has prowled the night as an outcast, valued only for his ferocious hunting skills. When a feud among the immortals escalates into all-out war, he is ordered by his ruthless queen to locate a Seer-a human woman with a special gift-who can secure victory for their clan. Ty’s search leads him to a quiet New England town, but once he has the Seer in his grasp, her touch awakens within him a hunger like he’s never known…

Lily Quinn has always been different. Since childhood, she’s had vivid nightmares and an eerie sixth sense. When a sexy, silver-eyed stranger demands her help, Lily plunges into a new world of danger and sensuality. With Ty, she discovers sizzling passions she cannot deny and powers she cannot control. Soon, it is clear that Lily is much more than a Seer-she holds the key to ancient secrets and unthinkable destruction. But will a vampire’s vow of eternal protection stop these evil forces… or unleash her dark destiny?

Dark Awakening was something of a surprise for me. I’d never read anything by Kendra Leigh Castle, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. While I wasn’t overwhelmed by the actual romance between Ty and Lily, I was very interested in Castle’s world-building.

Let me start off with the basic premise: the vampire world is made up of different dynasties and is functions on a caste system. The top dogs are dynasties like the Ptolemy, the Dracul and the Grigori. The lowest of the low are the Cait Sith (pronounced “cat-she”). There are only three options available to the Cait Sith: death at the hands of the nobility, slavery or a life of abject poverty. Ty is a member of the Cait Sith and he serves the queen of the Ptolemy, Arsinoe. The Ptolemy have a bit of a situation on their hands: something is killing them. All evidence points towards the Dracul, led by the sexy Vlad Dracul, being behind the killings. But Arsinoe knows that she can’t just randomly start a war with the Dracul without evidence. So she orders Ty to go find a Seer, a human unfortunate enough to be psychic. Ty searches for months until, finally, he finds what he’s been looking for. Lily has tried really hard to have a normal life. She had a pretty rough childhood-having uber-creepy nightmares and spontaneous bouts of uncontrollable telekinesis will do that to you-and all she wants is to have the safe little place she’s managed to carve out for herself. Sadly, these aspirations are shot to shit when she meets Ty. Lily’s aspirations of being “normal” are then completely obliterated when she and Ty find out that she is far more than just a Seer.

The romance between Ty and Lily was… it wasn’t the sort of thing that I’m probably going to remember in the long run. They had their sweet moments but I wasn’t dying to find out how things were going to work out for them. I was far more interested in their respective backgrounds (in terms of their dynastic origins) and how that fitted in with the bigger picture. I also felt that the ending was quite abrupt. I think we needed a little more time to resolve everything properly.

So while the romance wasn’t the strongest aspect of this book, I’m quite looking forward to seeing what Castle has planned next.

If you feel like getting ahold of it, you can find them here at Sony or here at Barnes&Noble. The price is the same, I just thought I’d give you options…

Heart of Gold

Heart of Gold

Heart of Gold

She has a passion for unlocking secrets of the past… 

Archaeologist Carter Wessex is drawn to Farrell Mountain to solve a centuries old mystery-and to find a fortune in hidden gold. One thing stands in her way: Nick Farrell, a notorious corporate raider with way too much sex appeal and no patience for trespassers on his land. After an explosive introduction, Carter abandons the project… but with Nick in hot pursuit.

What she finds is more valuable than gold…

Though wary of Nick’s change of heart, Carter is soon swept up into the mystery-and the arms of a man she swore she’d never fall for. As buried secrets surface and passion grows, the shocking details of the missing gold are revealed. So are Nick’s true motives, leaving Carter to wonder if everything between them has been just another cunning ruse… and if Nick has more secrets yet to share. It will take a heart of gold to find the truth-and have faith in a timeless love…

I’m having a really hard time writing this review because, believe it or not, I didn’t actually enjoy this book. Gah, it almost causes me pain to have to admit that because J.R Ward (writing as Jessica Bird) is one of my favourite authors ever. But it was an effort for me to get through this book. It was just so… blegh, you know?

Heart of Gold tells us the story of Carter Wessex and Nick Farrell. Carter is a beautiful archaeologist with a passion for old, dirty things. Nick is a ruthless businessman who has no problem trampling anyone who gets in his way. So this is clearly a case of opposites attract. Only… I just didn’t feel it. These two were a little too opposite for me and I couldn’t see how they would find any middle ground. But anyway, these two meet when Carter goes to ask Nick if she can dig around on his mountain to find a missing historically significant something-or-other. Nick doesn’t hesitate to answer Carter’s request with a resounding no. So after some snotty remarks, withering glares and melodramatic door slamming, Carter leaves Nick’s office. It’s only after their heated little exchange that Nick realises that Carter is in fact the estranged daughter of one of his business partners. Nick, being the opportunistic businessman that he is, wonders exactly how grateful said business partner would be if he organised some sort of reconciliation between the two. This makes Nick promptly change his mind about allowing Carter up on his mountain to look for the what’s-it. The story progresses in a fairly predictable manner from there.

I feel kinda disloyal that I didn’t enjoy this book. I really tried; I wanted to enjoy this book. But the story line did nothing for me, Carter was ultimately forgettable, and Nick was an ass. Definitely not one of the WARDen’s better books, but I still love her…

The cheapest place that I’ve found to buy Heart of Gold at WHSmith. But I’ve never used it before so if it doesn’t work for you check out old reliable Amazon.

Lords of Deliverance: Lethal Rider

Lethal Rider

Lethal Rider

They are here. They ride. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

Thanatos, the most deadly of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, has endured thousands of years of celibacy to prevent the end of days. But just one night with the wickedly sexy Aegis Guardian, Regan Matthews, shatters centuries of resolve. Yet their passion comes with a price. And Thanatos must face a price more terrifying than an apocalypse-he’s about to become a father. 

Demon-slayer Regan Matthews never imagined herself as the maternal type, but with the fate of the world hanging in the balance she had no choice but to seduce Thanatos and bear his child. Now, as the final battle draws closer and his rage at being betrayed is overshadowed by an undeniable passion for the mother of his child, Thanatos has a life-shattering realization: To save the world, he must sacrifice the only thing he’s ever wanted-a family.

I have seriously fallen in love with this series. I mean, I liked it before but now I love it. Thanatos has officially been added to my list of book boyfriends. Because underneath that gruff, crabby exterior lay an utter gem. Thanatos is one of my favourite male leads in this series. He was just too damn cute.

The story was set up in the previous book, Immortal Rider. Regan was sent by the Aegis to seduce Thanatos in order to fall pregnant. When Thanatos found out about Regan’s deceit, he  blew a gasket. Not only was he furious at being used but he was terrified that losing his virginity would mean his Seal breaking and him becoming a thundering loony. His reaction to the news that Regan was sent to seduce him was so bad that Ares and Limos felt the need to use hellhound venom to… sedate… him.

All of the above takes place in Immortal Rider. Lethal Rider takes place eight months later, and starts off with Thanatos shaking off the effects of the hellhound venom. Needless to say, Thanatos is pissed. He’s lost a whole eight months of his life, he’s confused about why he’s not evil, and he’s pissed that his first time having sex was the product of Aegis scheming. He wants to throttle Regan, and I can’t say I blame him. Regan’s time away from Thanatos has been a little more eventful. She’s found herself warming up to the idea of having a baby. She’s also been feeling guilty over lying to Thanatos and dreading the inevitable fallout.

This book wasn’t quite as funny as what I’ve typically come to expect from Ms Ione and I didn’t even care; I still loved it. Thanatos was so friggin’ sweet when he found out Regan was pregnant. All this guy ever wanted was a family of his own, but it never seemed possible because of the situation with his Seal. Normally, Thanatos is this take-charge, take-no-shit kind of guy, but in the face of Regan’s pregnancy he’s all nervous and uncertain.He is so excited to be a dad, but he flounders when trying to properly express that excitement. I had so many “awww…” moments with this book that it was ridiculous. Now, I know that I’ve been jabbering a lot about Thanatos but I haven’t forgotten about Regan. I was a little worried that Regan would be overshadowed by Thanatos, but that never happened. She totally held her own as a character; she was one tough cookie. She’d been dealt a rough hand but she dealt with it really well.

Lethal Rider is my favourite book in this series so far. Seriously, if Thanatos were a real guy, I would happily volunteer to have his babies. A whole soccer team, if he wanted. Rogue Rider is the last book in the Lords of Deliverance sub-series, and I can’t wait to see how the whole issue with Reseph is resolved.

If you have a Nook, you can buy Lethal Rider at Barnes&Noble. If you don’t you can check out Sony’s ebook store.

Holy Wow Wednesday: Bloody Sexy

I was watching Supernatural the other day and it occurred to me that something must be a little wrong in my head. Because it seems that the bloodier a guy is, the hotter he seems to be. I don’t know if maybe this has to do with some part of my brain that hasn’t really evolved from pre-historic times or something, but there is something ridiculously hot about a slightly bloody guy. Don’t look at me like that. Here, I’ll show you:

Tyler Hoechlin as Teen Wolf's Derek Hale.

Tyler Hoechlin as Teen Wolf’s Derek Hale.

Misha Collins as Castiel from Supernatural.

Misha Collins as Castiel from Supernatural.

Jensen Ackles, also of Supernatural, who stars as Dean Winchester.

Jensen Ackles, also of Supernatural, who stars as Dean Winchester.

The lovely Dan Feuerriegel who portrayed Agron in Spartacus.

The lovely Dan Feuerriegel who portrayed Agron in Spartacus.

Alexander Skarsgard who stars as Eric Northman in True Blood.

Alexander Skarsgard who stars as Eric Northman in True Blood.

See what I mean? These guys are smoking…

Highlander: The Highlander’s Touch

The Highlander's Touch

The Highlander’s Touch

A Warrior of Immortal Powers

He was a mighty Scottish warrior who lived in a world bound by ancient laws and timeless magic. But no immortal powers could prepare the laird of Castle Brodie for the lovely accursed lass who stood before him. A terrible trick of fate had sent her 700 years back in time and into his private chamber to tempt him with her beauty-and seduce him with a desire he could never fulfill. For this woman he burned to possess was also the woman he had forsworn to destroy.

A Woman Caught in the Mists of Time

When Lisa felt the earth moving under her feet, the fiercely independent 21st-century woman never dreamed she was falling… into another century. But the powerful, naked warrior who stood glaring down at her was only too real… and too dangerously arousing. Irresistibly handsome he might be, but Lisa had no intention of remaining in this savage land torn by treachery and war. How could she know that her seductive captor had other plans for her… plans that would save her from a tragic fate? Or that this man who had long ago forsaken love would defy time itself to claim her for his own.

This book has me a little confused. I typically love Ms Moning and her work, but I have mixed feeling about this one. It was going really well. I was enjoying it up until the last three or four chapters, and then everything sort of fell apart. I actually feel a little bit cheated, and that’s why I’m not giving The Highlander’s Touch a higher rating.

The Highlander’s Touch tells us the story of Lisa Stone, a modern twenty-first century woman, and Circenn Brodie, a fourteenth century man. How could these two possibly meet, you ask? Well, you can blame a certain nefarious fairy by the name of Adam Black. You might remember him from Beyond the Highland Mist. Anyhow, through Adam’s scheming, Lisa finds herself smack bang in fourteenth century Scotland and at the mercy of a mightily annoyed highland laird. Circenn had made a promise to kill the person who returned with a lost artefact. However, upon making that oath, he never imagined that a woman might find said object, let alone a woman like Lisa. See, our highland lord finds himself in a bit of a quandary: the interfering fairy, Adam Black, made him immortal, and it is Circenn’s biggest fear that he may end up being just like Adam. So he’s come up with a few rules, basics like always honouring his vows and never lying. When Lisa shows up, all those rules go flying out the window. Despite himself, the stern, serious laird finds himself intrigued by the strangely dressed young woman. Lisa Stone has had a rough time of it the past few years. She lost her father in a car accident when she was eighteen and that same accident put her mother in a wheelchair. Gone were any aspirations to go to university. Now Lisa had to worry about paying hospital bills and making enough money to take care of her mother, who they later found out had cervical cancer.

The story progresses in a fairly predictable manner from here onward. This isn’t a bad thing; I mean, cliches become cliche because they work, right? So I was enjoying this book, and then Ms Moning cheated. I hate saying this, but I honestly felt like Moning just completely copped-out with the ending. The whole idea of using magic to just, well… magically fix all of Lisa’s problems just didn’t sit well with me. I don’t normally mind having an element of the paranormal in my historicals but this was too much. I was really disappointed with how The Highlander’s Touch ended.

My faith was a little bit shaken with how this book ended, but I still mostly trust Ms Moning. I just hope she doesn’t do something like this again…

I looked around and the cheapest place to buy The Highlander’s Touch will be on Kobo.

Lords of Deliverance: Immortal Rider

Immortal Rider

Immortal Rider

 

They are here. They ride. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

Arik Wagner, a soldier with the US Army’s paranormal unit, the R-XR, kissed a girl and liked it. And then he went to hell as punishment. Where he’s spent weeks being tortured… and plotting revenge. 

Limos, Horsewoman of the Apocalypse, isn’t your average girl. She’s immortal, dangerous, and her finance is Satan himself. In a moment of weakness, she gave in to her desire and kissed Arik, triggering her fiance’s wrath-and his claim on her. In order to save Arik, and the world, Limos must make a dangerous pact with her recently turned evil brother, Pestilence. A deal that might just cost her her soul… and her heart.

Larissa Ione is honestly one of my favourite authors. Just when you think she can’t get anymore awesome, bam!, she does. Immortal Rider is book two in the Lords of Deliverance and book seven in the Demonica series. From what I can gather, Lords of Deliverance was it’s own series, and was then incorporated into Demonica. So… yes. That’s that.

Immortal Rider is Limos and Arik’s book. Most of you will recognise Arik from the Demonica series; he’s Runa’s brother and an old army buddy of Kynan’s. Arik also made an appearance in Eternal Rider where he met Limos, and the attraction between these two was immediate, although Limos had a rather strange way of showing it. Despite them making eyes at each other, nothing actually happens for a while (mostly, I suspect, because Arik was sporting cracked ribs). As it turns out, though, Arik would have been better off had Limos maimed him more severely because after one kiss, one measly kiss, Arik got dragged into hell by demons where he was tortured for months. I was a little annoyed with Limos after this happened. While Arik isn’t my favourite hero, he definitely did not deserve the crap that came his way after kissing Limos. But, in all fairness, after being celibate for thousands of years, I can’t blame Limos for wanting to go there.

Limos was one of my favourite leading ladies in this series. She acted like this happy-go-lucky party girl, concerned only with her next outfit; in reality she’s quite the badass, who manages to hold her own with her fierce brothers. It took me a little while to warm up to Arik. I think that, in a sea of hot fierce guys, he got a little lost. I also didn’t really feel the chemistry between him and Limos. There was so much else going on that their story felt a little… secondary to me. I enjoyed it but, at the same, I was almost impatient for them to get off the page so I could follow what was happening with Thanatos, my favourite of the Four Horsemen. I cannot wait for this book! I’m practically salivating at this point.

I am honestly in love with this series. It’s so much fun!