Friday, August 20, 2010

Non-Fiction Review: Flow: The Cultural Story of Menstruation by Elissa Stein and Susan Kim

Flow: The Cultural Story of Menstruation
by Elissa Stein and Susan Kim
St. Martin's Press
http://www.flowthebook.com
ISBN: 9780312379964
Release Date: November 10, 2009

from the publisher's site: 

In this hip, hilarious and truly eye-opening cultural history, menstruation is talked about as never before.Flow spans its fascinating, occasionally wacky and sometimes downright scary story: from mikvahs (ritual cleansing baths) to menopause, hysteria to hysterectomies—not to mention the Pill, cramps, the history of underwear, and the movie about puberty they showed you in 5th grade. 
 
Flow answers such questions as: What’s the point of getting a period? What did women do before pads and tampons? What about new drugs that promise to end periods—a hot idea or not? Sex during your period: gross or a turn-on? And what’s normal, anyway?  With color reproductions of (campy) historical ads and early (excruciating) femcare devices, it also provides a fascinating (and mind-boggling) gallery of this complex, personal and uniquely female process.

As irreverent as it is informative, Flow gives an everyday occurrence its true props – and eradicates the stigma placed on it for centuries.

my thoughts: 

You have to read this book! I'm going to say it again, just for emphasis, you have to read this book! I was hooked from the first page and finished it in only two sittings (I could have done it in one, but had to sleep). Flow is not only informative, but it is fascinating and funny. My poor boyfriend...every other paragraph I was shouting out some new tidbit of information that I'd just picked up. Because I've taken a women's history class not all of the information was new to me, but so much of it was. 

Reading Flow was a truly eye-opening experience for me and it has made me think a lot more about that little visitor and how I really feel about the whole process. Read this book, I can't recommend it highly enough.

 

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Paranormal Romance Review: Dark Crusade by Lori Devoti

Dark Crusade
by Lori Devoti



Silhouette Nocturne
http://www.loridevoti.com
ISBN: 9780373618095
April 2009
from the author's site: 

Exiled rogue shapeshifter Kerr Vik once saw being transported to Gunngar as a fresh start. Until the one person he most regretted leaving behind—captivating witch Heather Moore—stumbles through the portal…and finds herself right in the middle of a witch hunt. Heather has courageously come to Gunngar to redeem herself. But Kerr knows that if she braves it alone…she will die. He must somehow send her back through the portal. And it’s not long before a collision of truth, love and duty complicates Kerr’s mission by forcing him to choose sides: should he save this forbidden love or protect his honor?

my thoughts: 

I always love Lori Devoti's books. I've been following her Unbound series from the beginning, and aside from liking her writing style, I like the originality of her whole world. It's not often that you find books on hellhounds. 

There's a connection between Kerr and Heather from the very beginning of Dark Crusade, and as with most stubborn couples it takes them a while to come to terms with it. It's that journey that makes this book such a fun and quick read. I'm already looking forward to getting started on The Hellhound King

On a personal note: I had to laugh that the main character's name is Heather Moore, since my first name is Heather and my boyfriend's last name is Moore. :)

Friday, July 30, 2010

Paranormal Romance Review: The Vampire's Quest by Vivi Anna

The Vampire's Quest
Valorian Chronicles Book 4
by Vivi Anna
Silhouette Nocturne
http://www.vivianna.net
ISBN: 9780373618088
Release Date: April 2009
from the author's site: 

After escaping from the Otherworld Crime Unit, Kellen Falcon came to Nouveau Monde to crack a rare blood disease. But the European hotbed of temptation yielded sport no vampire could resist—criminologist Sophie St. Clair. And with only days to live, Kellen sought sweet release from her to escape a savage past.

The lycan beauty wasn't one to stray from her pact. But an investigation into a downtown bombing now tied the two together. And it wasn't long before Kellen's smoldering eyes and Sophie's fierce desire for this vampire put her loyalties to the test.

my thoughts: 

 The Valorian Chronicles is another great Nocturne series that I've read from the beginning and have loved. Think a paranormal CSI. Vivi Anna includes Romance, Mystery, and all of my favorite Paranormal elements: vampires, witches, and werewolves. 

The Vampire's Quest is a great tale of star-crossed lovers with plenty of action to glue you to the pages. I absolutely loved it and I can't wait to get started on The Vampire's Kiss.  

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Paranormal Romance Review: Immortal Bride by Lisa Childs

Immortal Bride
by Lisa Childs
Silhouette Nocturne
http://www.lisachilds.com
ISBN: 9780373618064
Release Date: March 2009
from the author's site: 

For generations, local residents have whispered about an evil menace lurking near the shore of the Lake of Tears. The recent murder of landowner Damien Gray's bride, Olivia, confirms the worst. Now, confused and heartbroken, Olivia's spirit survives death and seeks vengeance upon the man she desired more than life itself, the man she now suspects was her killer—Damien.

But an angry shaman has his own vicious agenda, one that will bring Damien to understand his Native ancestry. Steamy passion and ancient vendettas will draw them ever deeper into a drama of a family's legacy, murder and a love so strong it can withstand even death. 

my thoughts: 

I flew through Immortal Bride in one night. Lisa Childs penned a different kind of Romance. I was so absorbed into Olivia and Damien's story that I couldn't put the book down until I was done. 

Immortal Bride is a unique tale of reunion and forgiveness.Olivia and Damien are destined for each other and not even death is going to keep them apart.  I've loved everything else I've read by Lisa Childs and I'm sure I'll continue to do so. I can't wait for her next book.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Urban Fantasy Review: Embraced by Darkness by Keri Arthur

Embraced by Darkness
Riley Jensen, Guardian Book 5
by Keri Arthur
Dell Spectrum
http://www.keriarthur.com
ISBN: 9780553589610
Release Date: July 31, 2007
from the author's site: 


Part vamp, part werewolf, Riley Jenson plays by her own rules, whether it’s her stormy love life or her job as a guardian. But when her family’s alpha male demands that she solve the mystery of a vanished girl, Riley can feel a trap closing in around her. Because the job comes with a catch: if Riley fails, her own mother will die.

Now the stakes are raised, the hunt is on…and when more women vanish, Riley is caught between a lover who demands that she give up her work, a serial killer who knows no boundaries, and a club where humans and supernaturals mix—at their own peril. Thrust into a realm of seduction and violence unlike any she could have imagined, Riley has to battle to save everything she holds dear. But the ultimate hunt has only just begun….

my thoughts: 

Yet again Keri Arthur has written a great page-turner. In Embraced by Darkness, Riley has some decisions to make and none of them will be easy. She also finds herself working two equally puzzling cases, both of which find her in harms way. All of which equals one suspenseful read. Come on, you know you want to read it. :) And I highly recommend you do.


Friday, July 23, 2010

Fiction Review: Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

Garden Spells
by Sarah Addison Allen
Bantam Dell
http://www.sarahaddisonallen.com
ISBN: 9780553805482 (hardcover)
Release Date: August 28, 2007 (hardcover)
from the author's site: 

Welcome to Bascom, North Carolina, where everyone has a story to tell about the Waverleys. There's the house that’s been in the family for generations, the walled garden that mysteriously blooms year round, and the wild rumors of dangerous loves and tragic passions. Claire has always clung to the Waverleys’ roots, tending the enchanted soil in the family garden from which she makes her sought-after delicacies. She has everything she thinks she needs, until one day she wakes to find a stranger has moved in next door and a vine of ivy has crept into her garden... and Claire’s carefully tended life is about to run gloriously out of control.

my thoughts: 

Sarah Addison Allen has such a magical way about her writing. Unusual and extraordinary things happen to her characters and yet in their world, it's completely normal. I just loved sitting down with Garden Spells and immersing myself in Claire's and Sydney's stories. 
Garden Spells was such a fabulous tale. Sarah Addison Allen has quickly turned into an auto-buy, auto-read author for me.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Urban Fantasy Review: Dangerous Games by Keri Arthur

Dangerous Games
Riley Jensen, Guardian Book 4
by Keri Arthur
Dell Spectra
http://www.keriarthur.com
ISBN: 9780553589597
Release Date: March 27, 2007
from the author's site: 

In Melbourne’s urban underworld, there’s a nightclub for every fantasy and desire. But for Riley Jenson, one such club has become an obsession. Riley, a rare hybrid of vampire and werewolf, hasn’t come in pursuit of pleasure but of an unknown killer who’s been using the steamy nightspot as his hunting grounds.

Leave it to Riley to find the only ticket into the heavily guarded club: Jin, a deliciously hot-bodied bartender who might just provide the key to unmasking a killer unlike any other in the Directorate’s experience. Taunted by a former colleague turned rogue, distracted by an ex-lover’s attentions, Riley follows Jin into a realm of pleasure she could never have imagined. And as danger and passion ignite, a shocking mystery begins to unravel—one where Riley herself becomes the ultimate object of desire….

my thoughts: 

I've been hooked on the Riley Jensen books from the very first one. Every single book in this series has been such a quick read for me. I can't put 'em down; I've got to know what happens next. Riley's life is full of never-ending drama and suspense, not to mention all that romance. 

Dangerous Games is the perfect title for this book in so many ways. Riley is playing a dangerous game in her effort to find a killer. Keri Arthur just keeps ramping it up and I'm loving it. This series is a total auto-by series for me and I hope they keep coming for a while yet.  

Monday, July 19, 2010

Paranormal Romance: Fury Calls by Caridad Pineiro

Fury Calls
by Caridad Pineiro
Silhouette Nocturne
http://www.caridadpineiro.com
ISBN: 9780373618071
Release Date: March 2009

from the author's site: 

Four years ago, overcome by hunger, Blake Richards took too much from a young woman, and turned her to save her life. Now Meghan Thomas is like him, a vampire…and their initial attraction has turned to anger and distrust. She hates what he has made her, but when a vicious killer threatens Manhattan’s vampire community, Meghan has no choice but to turn to him—her sire. 
 
Blake is reckless and brash. Meghan is young and untried. Alone, they are no match for the killer. But with the fates of humans and vampires alike depending on them, their only hope is to trust in their blood bond.

my thoughts: 

 Fury Calls was just as great a read as the other books in Caridad Pineiro's The Calling series. Though it was definitely darker than most of the Nocturnes that I've read. Reading about Blake and Meghan, you got the sense that they were always going to be together, Meghan just wasn't ready to admit it yet. 

There was plenty of action and romance to keep the story moving, and a bad guy so bad you're itching to see him defeated. I really enjoyed Fury Calls, just as I've enjoyed all of Caridad Pineiro's other Nocturne titles. I'm anxious to try her single title Romances also. Caridad Pineiro is an author I'm going to keep coming back for.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Romantic Suspense Review: True Vision by Joyce Lamb

True Vision
by Joyce Lamb


Berkley Sensation
http://www.joycewrites.com
ISBN: 9780425235850
Release Date: June 1, 2010
from the author's site: 

Newspaper reporter Charlie Trudeau is living an ordinary life, until witnessing a fatal hit-and-run accident gives her an intense psychic power she has no clue how to handle—and brings a Chicago police detective to her doorstep...

Noah Lassiter wants nothing more than to find the driver who killed his good friend. But his only lead is the beautiful Charlie Trudeau, who gets prickly when he starts nosing around town. Charlie’s clearly hiding something, but Noah needs her help unraveling the mystery of his friend’s death—even if the electricity between them complicates things.

But the more Noah and Charlie uncover, the more they realize they’re looking for a desperate killer—and the more danger they’re in. And if Charlie can’t gain control over her psychic powers, they may not survive long enough to explore the full sizzling potential of their desire…

my thoughts: 

True Vision is the second book I've read from Joyce Lamb, but it's far from the last. True Vision is the first book in a new trilogy and January, and the release of True Colors can't come fast enough. 

Joyce Lamb included all of the elements that I love in a good story: Romance, Suspense, the Paranormal, and plenty of spice. 

Charlie and Noah are so great together even if individually they are less than perfect. I loved reading their story and I'm beyond ready for more. 

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Paranormal Romance Review: Dragon's Lair by Denise Lynn

Dragon's Lair
by Denise Lynn
Silhouette Nocturne
http://www.denise-lynn.blogspot.com
ISBN: 9780373618057
Release Date: February 1, 2009
from the author's site: 
 
DRUID SPELLS, DANGEROUS INTRUDERS, AND A MYSTERIOUS ESTRANGED HUSBAND...WAS HE FIEND OR SAVIOR?

When his family's nemesis tried to find a book of Druidic-elder spells. Druid Braeden Drake and his estranged wife, Alexia, must unite to prevent the evil force from unleashing a supreme reign of terror. But having Alexia return to Dragon's Lair brings along another set of troubles. For not only does she make him senseless with desire, she's also being followed by the enemy.

Though tragedy once drove them apart, Alexia didn't count on her return igniting so many powerful emotions. But as each dark night descends, revisiting the marriage bed is a temptation she finds more and more difficult to resist. All too soon Alexia realizes her heart is as much at risk as her life...


my thoughts: 

Gotta love a good dragon tale and Dragon's Lair is definitely a good dragon tale. It's also a great tale of reunited lovers, though in a twist from the traditional, this pair is already married. It's clear from the first time Alexia and Braeden are in the same room together that they're still attracted to each other and not quite ready to let go. However it's equally clear that there's a lot of history between them that needs to be settled first.  

Watching their love return as they search for answers to family secrets is one of the great elements that kept me turning the pages. Having a nasty bad guy adding suspense to the plot sure didn't hurt either. 

Since Braeden has 2 brothers and Denise Lynn hinted that there are more secrets to be uncovered, I'm really anxious for more and I will definitely be keeping my eye on this author.  

Monday, July 5, 2010

Mystery Review: Prime Time by Hank Phillipi Ryan

Prime Time
by Hank Phillipi Ryan
Mira
http://www.hankphillipiryan.com
ISBN: 9780778327172
Release Date: July 1, 2009

from the author's site: 

Deadlines. Desire. Deception. 

Could the scoop of her career be hiding in her email? Top notch TV reporter Charlotte McNally suspects some of that annoying spam clogging her email is more than just cyber junk. In fact, she thinks some of it might be carrying secret big-money messages to big-time insiders who have the key to decode it. Problem is, the last outsider to decipher the code wound up in the local morgue.

my thoughts: 

I'm writing this one up as a Mystery review because despite that my bookstore shelves this in the Romance department, the overall tone of the novel felt much more like a Mystery. 

Prime Time is the first novel in the Charlotte McNally series, and it's an excellent debut. The suspense kept me glued to the pages, while the red herrings and surprise twists kept me guessing about what was going on and who was behind it all. 

Charlotte is an interesting character and I'm curious to see what other trouble she gets up to. Hank Phillipi Ryan has definitely captured my interest and I look forward to reading her other books.  

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Romance Review: The Chief by Monica McCarty

The Chief
by Monica McCarty


Ballantine Books
http://www.monicamccarty.com
ISBN: 9780345518224
Release Date: March 23, 2010
from the author's site: 

An elite fighting force like the world has never seen...

Scouring the darkest corners of the Highlands and Western Isles, Robert the Bruce handpicks ten warriors to help him in his quest to free Scotland from English rule. They are the best of the best, chosen for their superior skills in each discipline of warfare. To lead his secret Highland Guard, Bruce chooses the greatest warrior of all.

The ultimate Highland warlord and a swordsman without equal, Tor MacLeod has no intention of being drawn into Scotland’s war. Dedicated to his clan, the fiercely independent chief answers to no one—especially not his alluring new bride, bartered to him in a bid to secure his agreement to command the deadliest fighting force the world has ever seen. The treacherous chit who made her way to his bed may have won his hand, but she will never claim his heart.

Although her husband’s reputation is as fierce as his manner, Christina Fraser believes something softer hides beneath his brutal shell. But the only warmth she feels is in their bed, in the glorious moments of white-hot desire that disappear with the dawn. When Christina’s reckless bid to win her husband’s love goes awry and thrusts them into danger on the eve of war against England, Tor will face his ultimate battle: to save his wife and open his heart—before it’s too late.

my thoughts:

The Chief was a book club selection for my Romance book club this month.  This was my first book from Monica McCarty, but I'm already looking forward to the rest of the books in this series. I'm definitely thinking I'm going to need to read her previous series too. 

Tor was a bit of a frustrating character initially because of his refusal to admit to his feelings for his wife, or any feelings for that matter. Thankfully Christina is more than a match for this bull-headed Highlander. The Chief is full of emotional ups and downs and a surprise or two. I can't wait for the release of The Hawk later this year. 

Monday, June 28, 2010

Romance Review: Vanished by Maureen Child

Vanished
by Maureen Child
Silhouette Nocturne
http://www.maureenchild.com
ISBN: 9780373618040
Release Date: February 2009
from the author's site: 

 
Forever fated to defend humanity against demons, immortal Guardian Rogan Butler has given up all hope of finding peace. But when a beautiful American unexpectedly appears, with all her self-assurance and charm, the winds of danger—and a soul-deep recognition—reawaken the warrior's long-buried desire….

Alison Blair came to Ireland duty-bound to tell Rogan of a sinister premonition, only to be rebuffed. Then evil strikes when her sister mysteriously disappears, and only Rogan can protect Aly from a fate worse than death. Can this brooding warrior be her Destined Mate—the key to a forgotten past, and to her future? 

my thoughts: 

Vanished is a great read. I've read Maureen Child's other Guardian books and I've enjoyed each one. I was really excited to see this story take place in Ireland. Ireland is one of the countries that it's great to fantasize about traveling to, plus who doesn't want to read about a hot Irish hunk?

Alison and Rogan are another great couple and watching their love grow was beautiful. Alison's just tenacious enough to deal with Rogan's stubbornness. I really enjoyed reading Vanished and I plan on reading more from Maureen Child soon.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Romance Review: Body Check by Deirdre Martin

Body Check
by Deirdre Martin
Berkley Jove
http://www.deirdremartin.com
ISBN: 9780515134896
Release Date: February 25, 2003

from the author's site: 

Janna MacNeil is a publicist on a mission to change the image of the bad boys of hockey: the Stanley Cup Champion New York Blades.

Ty Gallagher is a captain on a mission— to get his team to win the Cup again... at any cost. His determination is legendary, as well as his unwillingness to toe the corporate line.

When the persistent publicist and the stubborn captain butt heads, it's hard enough to crack the ice. But they may end up melting it instead...

my thoughts:

With this last playoff season I can to the realization that I love hockey (Go Blackhawks!). This new found love of hockey meant that I absolutely had to read Deirdre Martin's books. I've been aware of them, but previously hadn't felt any pressing need to check them out. I've been slowly buying her New York Blades series one by one and this weekend finished reading Body Check

Body Check had me glued to my seat, turning the pages. Janna and Ty are so good together, even if Ty is a bit thick and needs some convincing. Individually they are great characters too, they both really give you a reason to care about them, you genuinely want to see them happy. 
Hockey fan or not, Body Check is a great Romance and I recommend it highly. Now I'm on to Fair Play, I can't wait. :)
 

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Romance Review: Alpha Wolf by Linda O. Johnston

Alpha Wolf
by Linda O. Johnston
Silhouette Nocturne
http://www.lindaojohnston.com
ISBN: 9780373618033
Release Date: January 1, 2009
from the author's site: 

When Dr. Melanie Harding starts practicing veterinary medicine in a small town, she has no intention of buying into the area's absurd werewolf legends, and is angry when she has to save the life of an ordinary dog shot with a silver bullet.  But the dog's handsome, secretive--and really hot--owner, Major Drew Connell, soon convinces her of the existence of supernatural attraction.  He is one sexy shapeshifter.  But it's not the mysterious experiments being conducted by Drew and others at a nearby army base that provoked the resurgence of werewolf tales.  If not shapeshifters, then who is attacking both animals and people?

my thoughts:

I love Silhouette Nocturnes. I'm a huge fan of Paranormal Romance, so I was really excited when the Nocturne line was released. Every month I know I can buy 2 great new Paranormals, sometimes from an author I already know and love, sometimes from a new author I haven't read yet. Linda O. Johnston is the latter. Alpha Wolf is the first book I've read from her and I really enjoyed it. 

Melanie and Drew are a bit stubborn and slow to see that they belong together, but that's what makes watching it happen so sweet. The secondary characters are and interesting group. Some, like the others on base with Drew are characters you want to see again. However other characters, like the townspeople and tourists, are a far more frustrating bunch. 
Overall I'd call Alpha Wolf a fun, quick read. However I will let you know that if you're looking for a copy you will need to go through someone who sells used books since this title is no longer in print. Or if you prefer you can take a look at one of her other titles, I know I'm looking forward to reading more from Linda O. Johnston.
 

Monday, June 21, 2010

Romantic Suspense Review: Cold Midnight by Joyce Lamb

Cold Midnight
by Joyce Lamb
Berkley Sensation
http://www.joycewrites.com
ISBN: 9780425230244
Release Date: August 4, 2009
from the author's site: 

Kendall Falls, Florida, is a small town with a big past — and even bigger secrets.

Ten years ago, Kylie McKay suffered a brutal assault that ended her professional tennis career and sent her running from everything— and everyone — she loved. Now she’s back in Kendall Falls, determined to build a community tennis center and keep her eye on the future. But someone from her past has other plans ...

When Kylie’s construction site is vandalized, the man Kylie once left brokenhearted steps in. Detective Chase Manning has no doubt that Kylie’s life is in danger — and he’ll do anything to protect the woman he once loved. Even if it means ignoring their intense desire in order to catch a killer before he reaches his breaking point …

my thoughts: 

Joyce Lamb really kept my attention with Cold Midnight. With as easily distracted as I am by the computer these days, it's really saying something that I ignored the internet to read this book. 

Kylie and Chase are great characters and they were easy to care about. I love reunited lovers stories and this was another great one. This was a true Romantic Suspense; there was plenty of Romance and plenty of Suspense. I spent most of the book trying to figure out "whodunit" because it seemed like everyone around Kylie was acting suspicious and guilty. 

I strongly recommend reading Cold Midnight. And once you're done with that one be sure to check out True Vision the first in a new trilogy (I'm still reading that one, review to come soon). 

Friday, June 18, 2010

Romance Review: Tsunami Blue by Gayle Ann Williams

Tsunami Blue
by Gayle Ann Williams
Love Spell (Dorchester)
http://www.gayleannwilliams.com
ISBN: 9780505528216
Release Date: March 30, 2010
from the author's site: 
 
NO SAFE HARBOR

With her badass rain boots, her faithful dog, and the ability to predict the monster tsunamis that have reduced the US to a series of islands, Kathryn O’Malley isn’t afraid of much. Cut off from all society, she takes to the airwaves as Tsunami Blue, hoping to save something of humanity as the world around her crumbles. But Blue should be afraid—because her message reaches the wrong ears.

Now she’s the target of ruthless pirates known as Runners who want to use her special talents for their own profiteering—as soon as they can find her. Blue’s only shot at survival lies with the naked stranger who washes up on her rocky beach. A man who might just be working for Runners himself. Torn between suspicion and attraction, the two will have to navigate a surging tide of danger and deceit if they hope to stay alive.

my thoughts: 

Tsunami Blue is a unique and dark Futuristic Romance. I really enjoyed the story, despite the bleak world that Blue inhabits. Blue as a character is fascinating, as is her ability to predict tsunamis by speaking with the sea. 

Her developing relationship with Gabriel Black is suspenseful for the reader, because, like Blue, you aren't entirely sure what his game is and if he can be trusted. 
Overall I really enjoyed reading Tsunami Blue, it really kept me on edge and I had to know what was happening. I liked and cared about the characters and I really can't wait to see what else Gayle Ann Williams writes.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Romance Review: The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker by Leanna Renee Hieber

The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker
by Leanna Renee Hieber
Love Spell (Dorchester)
http://www.leannareneehieber.com
ISBN: 9780843962970
Release Date: April 27, 2010
from the author's site: 

With radiant, snow white skin and hair, Percy Parker was a beacon for Fate. True love had found her, in the tempestuous form of Professor Alexi Rychman. But her mythic destiny was not complete. Accompanying the ghosts with which she alone could converse, new and terrifying omens loomed. A war was coming, a desperate ploy of a spectral host. Victorian London would be overrun.  Yet, Percy kept faith. Within the mighty bastion of Athens Academy, alongside The Guard whose magic shielded mortals from the agents of the Underworld, she counted herself among friends. Wreathed in hallowed fire, they would stand together, no matter what dreams or nightmares—may come.  

my thoughts: 

Leanna Renee Hieber has very quickly become one of my favorite new voices in Paranormal Romance. Percy is such a sweet, gentle, and loving character and she really comes into her own in Darkly Luminous. Alexi behaves like his overbearing self but Percy quickly finds her own voice despite this. 

All of the mystery and suspense seen in Percy's first story are back. The Guard may think now that they've found Prophecy they can take a rest, little do they know that the real battle is just beginning. 

Everyone from book 1, The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker, returns and I was so glad to see them again. I just love everyone in these books and I'm really looking forward to October's A Midwinter Fantasy and Leanna's short story therein. I don't know if we'll see more of Percy and the rest of The Guard after that, but I know I'm looking forward to whatever Ms. Hieber releases.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Romance Review: Lucky Break by Carly Phillips

Lucky Break 
by Carly Phillips
HQN
http://www.carlyphillips.com
ISBN: 9780373774012
Release Date: September 29, 2009
from the author's site: 

Long ago, as revenge on a Corwin who stole her son's fiancee, a witch proclaimed an eternal curse that every Corwin male who married for love would be destined to lose his love and his fortune ... 
 
Jason Corwin knows he should resist his attraction to Lauren Perkins. After all, it was one of her ancestors that came up with the curse that had haunted every Corwin male since. But after one night of mind-blowing sex with his supposed—and very seductive—enemy, he can’t bring himself to stay away. 

All Lauren wants is to sell her late grandmother’s creepy house and leave the past behind forever. But that's not such an easy thing to do with gorgeous contractor Jason Corwin whispering sweet, sexy somethings in her ear ... about staying in town. Then a saboteur and the promise of hidden treasure changes everything - and one lucky break just might put an end ... to the Corwin curse forever. 

my thoughts: 

I think I've mentioned numerous times how very much I love Carly Phillips' books and Lucky Break is no exception. It's a beautiful finale to a very fun trilogy. I love that a Corwin and a Perkins came together for this one. 

Lucky Break had a bit more suspense than the previous two books and that's fine by me. Events from Lucky Charm come back into focus and the history of the Corwin Curse comes into greater light.
After reading all three books in the Corwin Curse trilogy I don't know that I could pick a favorite. I loved watching all three cousins and their lovely ladies find their happily ever after and I highly recommend you check these books out for yourself.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Urban Fantasy Review: Nightwalker by Jocelynn Drake

Nightwalker
by Jocelynn Drake


Harper (HarperCollins)
http://www.jocelynndrake.com
ISBN: 9780061632693
Release Date: July 29, 2008
from the author's site:

For centuries Mira has been a nightwalker -- an unstoppable enforcer for a mysterious organization that manipulates earth-shaking events from the darkest shadows. But elemental mastery over fire sets her apart from others of her night-prowling breed...and may be all that prevents her doom.

The foe she now faces is human: the vampire hunter called Danaus, who has already destroyed so many undead. For Mira, the time has come to hunt or be hunted.

But in a dimension just beyond the worlds boundaries, a banished race stirs dangerously, hungry for power, for domination, for vengeance. Already a protective seal has been breached: already blood flows like a river through the world's great cities.

And only the collaboration of two sworn enemies can save humankind...and its ferel brethern.

my thoughts:

I love a good paranormal and Nightwalker is definitely that. Jocelynn Drake had me intrigued from the very beginning and I can't wait to read more from her. Mira is a unique character, especially in her world. I'm really intrigued about the relationship between her and Danaus in subsequent books. One moment they're trying to kill each other, the next they're fighting side-by-side. Nightwalker left me wondering how long their tentative partnership will last. 

Jocelynn Drake has hooked me with Nightwalker and I can't wait to see where this series will go. 

Monday, May 3, 2010

Steampunk Review: Changeless by Gail Carriger

Changeless
by Gail Carriger
Orbit (Hachette)
http://www.gailcarriger.com
ISBN: 9780316074148
Release Date: April 1, 2010

from the author's site:

Alexia Tarabotti, the Lady Woolsey, awakens in the wee hours of the mid-afternoon to find her husband, who should be decently asleep like any normal werewolf, yelling at the top of his lungs. Then he disappears - leaving her to deal with a regiment of supernatural soldiers encamped on her doorstep, a plethora of exorcised ghosts, and an angry Queen Victoria. But Alexia is armed with her trusty parasol, the latest fashions, and an arsenal of biting civility. Even when her investigations take her to Scotland, the backwater of ugly waistcoats, she is prepared: upending werewolf pack dynamics as only the soulless can. She might even find time to track down her wayward husband, if she feels like it.

my thoughts:

It's no surprise, but I loved Changeless probably even more so than Soulless. Gail Carriger has such a wit about her writing. Alexia is a fabulous character to read as are many of the other characters (her sister's no treat, but watching Alexia spar with her is). Conall is his usual tasty but belligerent self. 

I absolutely adored Changeless and thanks to the way it ended I'm practically salivating for Blameless. I know I'll be buying it on release day as I did with Changeless. I truly don't think I could wait any longer than necessary.  

Monday, April 19, 2010

Romance Review: Mortal Sins by Eileen Wilks

Mortal Sins
by Eileen Wilks
Berkley Sensation
http://www.eileenwilks.com
ISBN: 9780425225523
Release Date: February 3, 2009
from the author's site:

 FBI agent Lily Yu is in North Carolina with her lover and mate Rule Turner, lu nuncio of the Nokolai werewolf clan, where he is to take custody of his son from the boy’s grandmother. It’s a purely personal trip until Rule, in wolf form, finds three bodies in a shallow grave. They carry the stench of death magic, which makes the murders a federal crime. Lily takes charge of the investigation, and soon realizes that nothing adds up—not the motives, not even the accused killer, who’s behind bars when death strikes again.

But murder, however bizarre, is an everyday affair for Lily, who was a homicide cop before being recruited into the FBI’s Magical Crimes Division. A more personal shock arrives in the person of Rule’s son’s mother. Why is she challenging Rule’s long standing plan to bring his son to live among the Nokolai?

But family must take a back seat when the violence escalates, and there’s no rhyme or reason for the killer’s next strike—a killer who may not even be of this world...

my thoughts:

Mortal Sins was a very interesting read. Though because I'd never read any of the previous books in the series, it took me a bit to get into. Despite my initial confusion, I really got into and enjoyed the story. I'm definitely going to be picking up Eileen Wilks earlier Lupi books. 

Mortal Sins was a slightly different Romance in the sense that Rule and Lily are already together when the story opens. Sometimes that's nice to read though because you get to see how the relationship progresses and how they survive the bumps along the way. 

Eileen Wilks is a new-to-me author that I plan on reading again. I recommend you give her a try too. However if you're like me and you prefer to read a series in order then you'll want to start with book 1, Tempting Danger.