Wealthy, attractive Lucas Reika treats life like a party, moving from bar to bar and man to man. Thumbing his nose at his restaurateur father's demand that he earn his keep, Lucas instead seduces a valued employee in the kitchen of their flagship restaurant, earning himself an ultimatum: lose access to his father's money or stay in the middle of nowhere with a man he has secretly lusted over from afar.
Quiet, hard-working Jared McFarland loves his farm on the outskirts of Hope, Arizona. Jared agrees to take in his longtime crush as a favor. When Lucas invades his heart in addition to his space, Jared has to decide how much of himself he's willing to risk and figure out if he can offer Lucas enough to keep him after his father's punishment is over.
Erotica - novella
TBR reviewer: Amanda
Twenty-six year old Kaya is transferring colleges due to lack of money and dealing with the disastrous ending of her eight-month relationship. As the only child of missionary parents, her life and experience make her feel isolated and different from her younger classmates. She shocks herself when she falls in instant lust with her philosophy professor and decides to pursue him, another out-of-character move. For forty-two year old Hayden Taylor, having Kaya in his philosophy class moves him away from the apathy he has been in since long before his fifteen-year marriage fell apart two years previously. He finds himself considering risking his career with thoughts of having the younger woman in his life. Her age and status as his student are marks against them, but her intelligence and beauty call to him. Her innocence appeals to his long-buried dominant side, as well. However, just as they begin to risk the forbidden by seeing each other, a threat to his job starts to pull them apart.
Although the story had appealing moments, I didn't really feel connected to the characters. The writing had choppy moments, and there were also some editing issues that kept me from getting fully involved in the story. Their instant attraction to each other felt contrived and neither of them seemed to react consistently with their own inner monologues, much less with each other. Even the climactic issue near the end fell short of what it seemed to be
reaching for and the ending felt flat.
I think there was potential in this plot that just wasn't quite achieved. Even the BDSM was hinted at but never really shown, as if there would have been more to see if the story had continued on after the chosen endpoint. I felt as if the relationship could have been more believable if the book had been longer or the story covered a longer time-period than it did.
Romance - Short
TBR reviewer: Brutally Honest
Alba had a hard childhood and is now in another difficult spot. She’s falling for Jack, her lover but her best friend Liz shocks her by a shared kiss between the two women. What follows is a tale of secrets revealed, bombshells dropped and an ending I found very fit.
Present tense can be a little tricky, I noticed a lot of issues with telling and Ms. Barrett’s use of that tense. Several scenes were also very jerky and some scenes rushed. If those issues had been dealt with I think this would have been a great contemporary piece.
Liz and Me was short and twisted, I would recommend this to readers who like dark, hot
Purchase here (Only .99)
Ms. Barrett is giving away an ecopy to one lucky winner! Comment below to enter. Contest ends Jan 22nd.
Historical, romance - novel
I was craving a historical romance and Bedding The Heiress had been sitting on the the top of my to be read pile. Actually, sitting on my shelf, looking pitiful. So, I gave the book a dusting and went to reading.
The story is about Francesca whose an innocent, feisty, wonderfully written character that trusts the wrong man. She now has to steal back the necklace he took from her. Justin is a former blacksmith and the new duke of colster. He’s hot headed with a brogue that could make an ice queen melt.
The first few chapters were rather dull. They were building up the story but were a struggle to get through. It could have been cut in certain areas and really gripped the reader at the beginning. Once Justin and Francesca have a mistaken kiss, Bedding The Heiress turns into a romantic adventure!
Their strange connection unfolded beautifully and really drew me into the historical setting. Both have secrets that are opened and quickly places both of them in precarious positions. In the end, I found myself routing for their growing love.
Bedding The Heiress was an entertaining and romantic read with characters I really enjoyed.
The TBR Pile is giving away a hardcover copy of Bedding the Heiress to one lucky winner. You will need to provide address ONLY if you win, please do not post it in the comments. To enter, comment below. Contest ends Jan. 20th.
Imagine having someone so devoted to you and you don't even know it. What if that person, that perfect one was right under your nose? What if that person was not only the hero of your heart, but a savior to many? Dorothy Gale found herself growing older and was stuck in neutral. She wanted adventure and love. Yet her love life was non-existent, with only fantasies of hot sex and being dominated keeping her company. Lacking in human companionship, she felt blessed to have her devoted dog, Toto. He was her solace. Little did she know, her dog had a big secret and an even greater destiny.
Fantasy - novella
TBR reviewer: Brutally Honest
This is a new erotic take on The Wizard of Oz. It sounded like a fabulous twist but things went very wrong. The prologue was a mess. We’re thrown into a scene, it’s obvious where we are as I’ve seen the movie, but the author rushes this drastically. Very little details with no surroundings.
There’s a scene where Dorothy is attacked and Toto has to shift and save her. He does turn into a naked human, kicks the attackers butts and then turns back into the beloved pooch. This is all before Dorothy opens her eyes. One question: Who did she think made the attackers run off? She doesn’t even wonder why the attempted rape just stopped. That gave the story such an unrealistic feel and the characters a swift kick into the downward spiral.
Then we come to a rainbow colored twister and train which was unique. It still needed a lot of work both editing and fleshing out. It was so very choppy and read like an outline. From here Dorothy and Toto land from the twister. It gets so hard to even try to enjoy this book. The writing is extremely rushed and choppy.
One minute Toto and Dorothy are in a land with strange fauna and flora (I don’t know how strange as the author used no details) Toto is looking for shelter as the night approaches. The next few feet they’re in a desert walking for hours. What happened to sunset? Then Toto finds a cave and he huddles together with Dorothy to keep her warm. Weren’t they in a desert? These inconsistencies really ruined the book.
As the stories progress the characters change, they become one dimensional and then there’s the editing issues. As I stated above, a mess. Finding Home had so much potential but the author needs more practice and a better editor.
Paranormal, Romance - novel
TBR reviewer: Shyla
Jaz is a woman who knows what she wants, and isn’t afraid to march to the beat of a different drummer; henceforth, her decision to live off a combo of synthetic blood and animal. It’s her journey to avenger her family who was wronged by a vampire named Martin that introduces her to Jason. The vampire has a deadly reputation that precedes him, but she quickly discovers there’s much more than meets the eye.
Jason is vampire hunter extraordinaire. Bound by the will of his sire, Mina, he was forced to leave a life of happiness and love thirty years earlier to hunt down the vampires on a list. The move has left him numb, and cold.
To be honest, I had a hard time rating this book because The Betrayal left me torn. The characterization was wonderful. I felt like I really knew Jason and Jaz. Their backgrounds were interesting, the chemistry between them was brilliant, and the banter made me smile and at times chuckle.
It was the plot that made the story feel a bit disjointed for me. Ms. Badillo spun a love story in the opening of the book with a completely different female lead which left me waiting for the other shoe to drop the entire book. There were times when I wasn’t sure where the story was going, and too much background information.
Now don’t get me wrong. Ms. Badillo has skills. Her concepts were unique, and the writing detail was superb. I just wish the Betrayal had more direction. I would happily read another book by this author.
The driver’s side door eased opened and Jason swallowed hard as long, shapely legs, sporting an impressive pair of black patent-leather heels, emerged from the car.
His gaze trailed up over the tight, black leather skirt that hugged well-proportioned hips and continued up to a slight waist and amply endowed breasts, then settled on a plump pair of ruby red lips, glistening with a thin layer of gloss. Lavender eyes glared back at him with a hard look, so cold it caused ripples of knots to twist his insides.
“I take it you’re Jason?” she hissed standing in front of him with her hand planted firmly on the well-formed hip he’d appreciated only seconds ago.
“Yeah,” he replied, uneasy. “And you would be?”
“Jazmine Fabré,” she snapped as she pressed her lips together and eyed him up and down. “Good, you travel light.” She approached and reached for his duffel bag.
Jason pulled his shoulder back, cringing at the thought of a woman assisting him with his bag. “Thanks, but I’ve got it.” He noted the way her shiny auburn hair shimmered with subtle streaks of blonde highlights as though kissed by the sun. She was young, but not necessarily a young vampire, at least not very young anyway. Her confidence was much greater than it would have been if she had been recently turned. Not to mention the fact that she was waiting alone in a car on a city street that wouldn’t have been safe for a less experienced vampire. Even Mena wouldn’t take a risk like that.
“Where is Mena?”
“She will be along in a few days. Bruin must have had more pressing matters for her to deal with.” She popped the trunk and stepped aside.
“She just left me a couple of hours ago,” he grumbled as he tossed the bag inside. “Why didn’t she call?”
“Does she know she’s supposed to check in with you?” She cut him a narrowed glance as she shut the trunk and headed for the open driver’s door.
Jason stood there for a moment wondering what the hell he’d done to piss off a woman he’d only just met. If this was how the next few days would be, he’d rather go it alone.
“The plane’s ready and we should arrive in Colorado in about six hours.” She ducked inside the car and closed the door behind her.
Jason waited, not sure if he wanted to get into the car with her nor not. She obviously wasn’t the type for friendly conversation.
She lowered the window. “What? Should I have opened your door for you?”
He cocked his head to the side as a sharp twinge pinched the base of his skull. She was already on his bad side, and with the mood he’d been in, she was easing onto thin ice.
Ms. Badillo is giving away an ecopy to one lucky winner. Comment below to enter. Contest ends Jan 20th.
M/M, Romance - Novella
TBR reviewer: Amanda
The Hun & the General takes the characters of Attila the Hun and a retired Roman general as a pair of thwarted, star-crossed lovers. They spent time together before the story begins as the general tried to form a diplomatic solution to the problem of the Huns attacking Rome. As the current story opens, the treaty has been broken and the two men find themselves once again thrown together as diplomatic relations are re-opened.
Although I found the premise fascinating because I would never have considered Attila the Hun as a romantic lead of any sort. The story itself felt very rushed and left me feeling dissatisfied. The romance was already developed apparently, but I did not really feel their love for one another beyond what they both seemed to think was good sex. I was also disappointed with the ending, which was too sudden for my taste.
However, I found the historical setting fascinating and could see how with more development the story could have rated higher for me. I would have loved to see more of the back story actually told and more of what happened next. If there is a sequel at some point, I am invested enough in their story to want to read it.
“I’m waiting for the but. Come on, man, show me your guts. Tell me why we shouldn’t seize what’s left of the Roman Empire once and for all.” Attila turned to the table and saw the fallen goblet, the milk dripping off to soak into the mat on the floor. He bellowed to the far side of the room. “Girl, fetch ale.” He perched on the edge of the table and smiled. “Let us drink, my friend. See if the barley loosens your tongue more than your king’s wishes seem to.”
A slave girl scurried in, carrying a jug and two goblets, which she set on the table.
“Hurry up, woman, or I’ll tear your womb from you with my bare hands.” He grabbed the girl from behind as she bent over the table to pour the beer. He pulled her by the hips until his cock pressed against her buttocks. “Or maybe you’d like us both to give you a good fucking?” He let her go and laughed. “Away with you. We can pour our own ale.”
Attila filled one silver goblet and gave it to Barbax, then shook the dregs of milk from his wooden cup and served himself. He took a long swig and wiped his mouth with the back of his hand. “Well, get on with it then.”
Barbax swallowed hard. “Theodosius has made Constantinople impregnable.”
“Nothing is impregnable, except that Visigoth wife of yours.”
“The walls he’s built around the city are like nothing else on earth.”
“And nothing on earth has ever stopped us.”
“But this is different. Constantinople is weeks away.”
“We’ve marched farther.”
“But not with the machines we’ll need if we are to even break one brick. We’ll need battering rams and towers and—”
“And we’ll take them. We’ll take all we’ve got, ironworkers and carpenters too, and then we’ll take Constantinople. I’ll personally impale that snake Theodosius before I piss on his throne.” He drained his cup and slammed it onto the table. “Start the preparations. I want to leave before the rainy season.”
“But nothing! Now get out of my sight before I put you over the table and do what I should have done to that serving wench.”
Attila stroked his fine beard with his fingers and watched Barbax leave. Pillaging had served their people well, but they had need of greater wealth now. Yet despite his bravado, the warrior king hoped for an alternative to the march on Constantinople. Barbax spoke the truth. With so much to transport, they would move slowly. Word of their approach would reach Constantinople long before they did, and Emperor Theodosius would have time to prepare. What Attila needed was a miracle.
Mr. La Roche is giving away an ebook to one lucky winner. Comment b
Paranormal, Romance, Suspense - Novella
TBR reviewer: Luta Wolf
Someone is impersonating Miriam, going around and raising demons. Her total and utter lack of ability to conjure anything isn’t stopping the Hell Hounds and Witch’s High Council from blaming her. What hurts the most is that even Adrian the Alpha HellHound believes she’s guilty, even though he was there when her one attempt to summon went down the drain. What does a girl have to do to prove her innocents?
This book is good despite it’s shortness, there was a lot involved but the author balanced it well. It just didn’t meet it’s full potential. The plot was unusual, it’s not often that you read about hellhounds and making them police the witches was genius. While the suspense was pretty predictable there was a lot of excitement to keep me on the edge of my seat. The characters were good, I liked how strong and yet vulnerable Miriam is and how despite Adrian’s distrust he can’t not want to protect her.
What could have been better was the character connection. They say they love each other, however, I didn’t feel it. I felt the sexual attraction but there just wasn’t enough emotion given to them to make me see why they have to be together. The ending left a lot of open ended questions. It left me feeling more as though it’s happy ever after for now rather than just happy ever after and I saw no signs that there was another book in the works for these characters.
Still I enjoyed Waking The Dead, it just left me a little unsatisfied.
Thriller, Mystery - Novel
TBR reviewer: Kim
This is the story of Jack. A basically good guy who got put away for 5 years after an armed robbery. He bides his time in jail, reading and deciding on going straight. On coming out however Fate has other ideas. He is put in the path of an old friend who persuades him to do one last job. He agrees, and via a love triangle and meeting up with an old school friend the job begins....
This started off very slowly, almost to the point of me giving up but being the tenacious type of person I am, I stuck with it. I am glad I did because about a third of the way through it grew wings and flew along. The development of Sandra and Jacks relationship was quite sweet, with them keep meeting by chance and then losing touch again. His regret at having to do the job, since he met her was tangible. The meeting with Carla, and her interference
in his relationship with Sandra, and regret because his heart was with Sandra was real.
Once the job starts that was when everything starts getting good. The action from that point on was unrelenting and I found it really hard to put the book down. The ending was explosive and very exciting! A good thriller that I recommend for readers who like a slow build up and an explosive ending!
Marnie's decision to finance her law degree by pole dancing awakens her latent sexuality, and the mysterious stranger lurking in the shadows sends her libido into overdrive. Realizing her sexy lurker is a vampire is bad enough, but her boss is the alpha wolf of a pack of shifters? Torn between her attraction to both men and surrounded by danger, she has a decision to make. One that will change her life forever.
Paranormal, Romance - novel
TBR reviewer: Luta Wolf
Marnie is determined to find justice for her mother, never imagining that it would be so hard to reach those dreams. To make ends meat she finds herself working at a strip club where she meets all sorts of different people including club owner Ion. Ion has a past too and it’s taught him to steer clear of humans but when Marnie is attacked all that changes.
I loved the characters! Marnie is a bundle of contradictions, she’s vulnerable and withdrawn but this ex-gang member knows how to hold her own. Oh and sexy alpha shifter, every time he mentioned his wolf rolling over and showing his belly to Marnie, well my heart melted a bit. The balance between humor, spice, spunk, and excitement was really well balanced. The writing style really puts me in mind of the Samba, it entrances while seducing all at the same
However what I didn’t care for was the twist to the plot. The plot leans towards the normal paranormal/shifter plot and to combat the author throws in vampire Lucas. I liked his character but his part in the story, not so much. His part actually confused me and I think he confused the author as well and it shows. In the beginning you really get the feel that this book was suppose to be a three-some because of the details put into Lucas’s feelings towards Marnie. Midway through the book that’s changed but adjustments are not made to the
previous parts and hence me feeling a little off put about his character.
Lure of the Blood still left me feeling more than satisfied. Can’t wait to check out what more this author has in store!
The hands on her hips softened, as Marnie froze. Shivers of excitement or fear or both, she couldn’t be quite sure which, danced along her spine at the images those growled words created. Her hands clung to his shoulders and she lost herself in his predatory smile, when she risked a glance up at his face. The eyes of his wolf were looking down on her and he crowded her further against the wall. Her breasts flattened against his chest and his thigh moved sinuously against her core.
“So wet, my little one. Tell me, is this bounty all for me?”
A renewed surge of moisture was his answer and his eyes darkened further. She could feel his claws slowly dragging along her sides as his hands wandered to her neck and he pulled back slightly, one hand cupping her breast through the fabric of her dress, whilst his head lowered and Marnie’s eyes fluttered closed in anticipation of his invasion.
The gentleness of the kiss that followed took her breath away. Not the harsh invasion she had been expecting, but a tender seduction of lips and teeth, coaxing her to open on a sigh. Ion slipped into that moan, his tongue exploring every part of her mouth with agonising slowness, whilst his hand on her nipple rubbed and teased, every roll sending shards of pure pleasure between her thighs. Desperate to take the kiss deeper, her tongue sought his, but every time
she tried he withdrew with a muttered growl, shaking his head and the hand on her breast stopped its intimate massage.
“I told you, we’re taking this slow, little one. I have no wish to hurt you.”
“You won’t hurt me, Ion. Please, I need you.”
Something hot and dangerous flashed across his face at her whispered plea, the grip on her tightening for an instant. He smiled, the fangs of his wolf clearly visible, and Marnie held her breath at the struggle she sensed in him. The hand on her breast gripped the front of her dress and with one quick flick of his sharp claws the dress ripped, exposing her to his hungry gaze from the waist down. She sucked in her tummy on a shuddered moan as those menacing claws ran a trail over the soft skin of her abdomen, skimming the top of her thong with a feather touch, before he withdrew his claws and his fingers dipped under the elastic. His thigh spread her wider, as his fingers hovered over her clit and he resumed the kiss, his
raspy tongue duelling with hers, until she thought she was going to dissolve into a sodden mess of drool and need.
His breathing was as heavy as hers when he finally pulled back, his eyes glowing in the darkness of the room. "What makes you so sure I won’t hurt you. You’re such a little thing. You have no idea what my wolf could do to you.”
Marnie couldn’t breathe under the intensity of his fevered gaze. Of course she knew what he could do. Had she not seen his wolf in action mere minutes ago, about to rip Lucas to shreds? Terror slammed into her anew, not at Ion’s wolf, but at what could have happened to him, and she bit her lip so hard she could taste her own blood.
Ion released her with a muffled curse, all traces of his wolf gone. The flash of pain she saw in his eyes, before he turned his back on her, sliced straight through her heart.
“Good, I knew you’d come to your senses.”
Ms. O'Connor is giving away an ecopy to one lucky winner. Comment below to enter. Contest ends Jan. 15th.
Science Fiction - novel
TBR reviewer: Mark
Imagine if you will a dystopian future in the style of George Orwell's 1984. A future where Governments have all but been dissolved; a future where big Corporations now control every aspect of your life and where there are no more cities but instead self-contained districts split into four distinct sectors of business. Imagine a world where the energy crisis has spiraled to the point where electricity and heating is strictly rationed and where Global Warming has
lead to much of the planet becoming uninhabitable due to adverse weather conditions. Sounds pretty bleak right? The problem is that it also all sounds pretty credible and believable! Could this be where our own future is leading? For Humanity's sake, I sure hope not!
World Mart is a bleak tale set in an all too likely future. Think not so much Bladerunner but more of a darker, more serious and less surreal version of Terry Gilliam's Brazil and you will be getting very close to the world Lane has created here. Following the life of one family as it struggles to survive in this post-modern depressingly prophetic future, World Mart is a tale that twists and turns through a series of events that overturn everything one man thinks he
knows about those in control and offers a bleak vision of a world that seems, at times, not that far away from coming true!
It is difficult to talk about this book without giving too much away, but this was a compelling read that gripped me very early on. The characters are well conceived, the plot compulsively addictive and all in all the story flowed fairly well. That is not to say this book is not without a few flaws (a plot thread concerning one character's experiences of voices in her head is never adequately explained, the Deviants who seek to threaten the big Corporations' control only seem distinctive by the fact that their eyes are a lighter shade than other peoples') but these were never enough to spoil my enjoyment. The end result is a novel that unsettles the reader simply by being very close to the truth of what could just be waiting around the horizon.
I really enjoyed this and would certainly read other material by this author. Lane apparently writes under lots of other names in several different genres but certainly from this example it seems they have a real talent for scarily believable Science-Fiction and will definitely be someone I will be looking out for in the future!
Ms. Lane is giving away a copy to one lucky winner. Comment below to enter. Contest ends January 13th.
ALL PRIZES MUST BE CLAIMED WITHIN A WEEK OF RECEIVING THE WINNING EMAIL.