Monster or hero?
My name is Larkspur and I was born in the Colony, a labyrinth of tunnels and caves miles beneath the surface designed for prisoners. Being born among the criminals isn't an easy childhood. But I have a secret, my nails turn into sharp claws. I learned early how to fight dirty, hide well and never trust. All too soon, our world changes. Something happens to the prospering world above. The criminals desiring freedom and revenge push toward the surface. Me among them.
Humanity needs a hero, now more than ever, but all they get is me, a monster from the darkness.
Romance, contemporary - novel
TBR Reviewer: Luta Wolf
Wynne Smith sees a pattern and is unable to stop even though she is told to. Only one man will hear her out, US Marshal Seth Vassar but will there determination into finding the identity of a serial killer make them the next target. As they search by day and heat the sheets by night one thing is clear, they’re time together is anything but boring.
I love a good suspense book, one that leaves me guessing who did it all the way to the end and this really fit the bill for it. The plot is extremely well balanced even while going from the past to the future it was all seamlessly blended together. The villain is really dark and a serious creeper but the author once again did an amazing job of balancing, just when it would become too much the author would throw in a nice dish of steam. Oh and was this story hot, two alpha characters circling and sniffing each other out. Just as I thought one
would go in for the kill, clothes are being thrown about.
I loved the characters! Honestly, the suspense was so strong in this story that I was a bit surprised at just how well done these characters were. The chemistry was viable, the description and history made them so real. I truly hated to leave them when the story ended. My only complaint is how stupid Wynne could be but again, I can’t help but actually like that. It added a third dimension but beware that it will have you yelling at your book just as you yell in a horror movie at the idiot character that goes down the dark basement stairs.
In a Lover's Silece is the sitting on the edge of my seat romantic thriller and this book was a thrill that I highly recommend.
"I'm so totally screwed." The temptation to smack her skull onto her desk a few times was overwhelming, but Wynne Smith fought it. She needed to keep her head up so she could watch the progress of the three men following Donna. The collections manager led them past the collections floor with its sections of cubicles, and into the office of Elliot White, the owner of the agency.
Over the partition separating their workstations, Wynne's friend, Rita Lang, peered down at her. "What's up? Who are they?"
Wynne figure cowering behind flimsy moveable barriers wouldn't do her any good. She stood up and propped her arm on the wall. She gave a quick wave to the dark-haired man carrying a cowboy hat.
He dipped his head in return. The beginnings of a grin lifted his lips and amusement flashed in his green eyes. In her stomach, butterflies fluttered to life and the temptation to curl up against his broad chest had to be pounded into submission.
"You know them?" Rita scurried out of her cubbyhole to join Wynne.
"Not really. The big guy in the suit I don't know, but the smaller suit behind him is a special agent with the FBI. Dex Franklin. The one in the jeans and McCloud coat is Deputy US Marshal, Seth Vassar."
"FBI? Marshal? What have you done? And what's a McCloud coat?"
Wynne laughed and answered the easiest of the questions. "Remember the 1970s TV series with Dennis Weaver? He always wore that suede coat with the sheepskin lining. That's a McCloud coat."
"Ah." Rita's head bobbed up and down, her short red curls bouncing around her face. "So, what did you do?"
"Wynne." Donna's cool summons overrode Rita's question.
Not that Wynne wanted to answer either woman. No. If she had her 'druthers, she'd be out the office's front door and half-way home. But the look on Donna's face and the surprised glance from Amy Wright, the collection agency's paralegal, assured Wynne there was no opportunity for escape.
Grabbing the bottle of Dr. Pepper from her desk, Wynne sighed. "Pray for me, Rita, it's gonna be a hell of a Friday." She didn't wait for a response before crossing the room and following Donna into the owner's office.
Paranormal, Romance - novel
TBR Reviewer: Amanda
Hatch Lancaster is a dragon, a member of two dragon races hiding among humans in plain sight. Hatch is a Concord and is sent by an older friend to Maui with no understanding of what he is supposed to be doing there. His mother, Ellie, also drops strange hints and orders on him while he is there, and requests he check on an old friend, Lucas Blue, and his daughter, Vivian Blue. Vivian, or Blue as she is called, is an 18-year-old half-breed, the daughter of a Tar and a Concord dragon who has been raised to think she is human. Throughout the book, Blue begins to find out about Dragonkind, the truth behind her parents' life (and mother's death), and her own strangeness. Hatch falls in love rapidly, and
although they both fight it to begin with, Blue falls right back.
This book set up a very interesting society and I was pulling for Blue and Hatch, but the writing left much to be desired. At times choppy, I often felt as confused as Hatch was about what was going on, and I still had too many unanswered questions at the end of the book. However, I liked all the characters and the world that was built. The concept of what dragon
scales are and each character's individual magic was quite fun. I would love to see Hatch and Blue get their HEA rather than the ubrupt ending that was left. I assume a sequel is in the works and would be pleased to read one.
Erotica - novel
TBR Reviewer: Shyla
Teach Me Master, is a steamy short that walks a tight rope between tension, resistance and surrender.
Triss, “Treats” Long has been crushing on her neighbor, Mr.Sexy for years. Once she discovered her apartment was directly across from him she couldn’t resist watching him and the deliciously naughty things he liked to do with his partners. Rope, leather, and spankings, are things that should send a good girl like her running in the opposite direction, except it ignites a fire in her belly. Years of longing and sexual frustration did nothing to compare her to what a face to face meeting would do to her body and her mind. From the moment Vince runs into Triss in his hallway, she’s the only woman he can think about. He’s had plenty of play dates to test his compatibility to other subs, but none have stuck. Yet, there’s something he senses in Triss, he’s willing to wait for. For the next six months he focuses his attention to winning her over to the dark side. When their nightly talks on the phone are no longer enough he gives her an ultimatum. They can move to the next level or go their separate ways. What follows next is a sexy lesson In self-discovery, pleasure, and toe-curling sex.
Ms. Rain did a wonderful job painting a picture of who the heroine was. Triss is an independent woman who works hard to pay her own way, with a writing career by day and an apartment cleaning gig in the evenings. She’s satisfied with everything but her love life which is non-existent. Literally , despite her age the erotic romance writer is a virgin. Yes the irony made me chuckle as well.
That being said, I was left wondering about the hero Vince. Who was he other than the sexy Dom who craved Triss, wore nice suits, and made the decision to chase Triss after one run in, literally in his hallway. What was it that drew him to Triss? Why he was so sure she was the one? He was portrayed as a play boy, so it’d take a lot more than a hunch to make him quit other woman cold turkey. ( Woman everywhere wish players gave up this game this
easily, am I right?) I know that the story was only 105 pages, but I felt she could’ve taken some of the spot light off of the heroine and onto Vince.
I also felt the story went a bit overboard explaining why, Triss was so dead set against the kink Vince had to offer. True, it’d be hard to get used to the fact that what you desire is beyond what’s accepted as ‘the norm’ in society. But, we’re talking about a very independent woman who wrote erotica for a living. In my mind she would’ve gotten over her aversion sooner. She’d lusted after Vince for four years, spent a year getting to know him, and six
months talking on the phone as a Dom and her Sub. At this point, I was left wondering what she’s waiting for, and why Vince was still holding out. Not that a man shouldn’t wait until a woman is ready. But these two weren’t even going out on dates, or kissing.
For those reasons listed above I gave Teach me Master three stars. I think if Ms. Rain had taken out some of the background information, and focused more on the present, this could have earned a four star rating, easily. Those tweaks would have erased the moments that made the story seem to drag, fleshed out the characters more and added more believability.
Romance, Suspense - novel
TBR Reviewer: Amanda
El Mirador was a Spanish beach resort destroyed by fire in the 1970's. When Zara Flynn's father dies in an accident at his construction site in Indonesia, she finds herself the 24-year-old CEO of Flynn Enterprises as well as the personal owner of the burned-out hulk that is El Mirador. She soon finds herself embroiled in strange events revolving around the ruined property, a famous Spanish rocker, a Canadian engineer working for her company, and the local officials involved in Planning and Development for Costa del Sol. Along the way she just might find out why her father left her such a strange legacy and get clarity about his death.
I found the cast of characters assembled in this story to be fascinating. "Mickey Mountain" and his strange predilections, the Dark Angel, the older English couple that took Zara under there wings when they discovered she was staying alone at Club Marbella, and of course, David all added to the interesting aspects of the book. There were a couple of places that dragged, but most of the time I enjoyed the storyline and was pleasantly surprised with the ending. Although I am not a huge fan of "insta-love", I liked Zara and David together, and especially with Zara's friends and family all wanting them together, felt like they made a realistic couple. I also liked the way the prologue and epilogue, both taking place in the '70s, gave both a glimpse at Zara's father and explained the last of the mysteries surrounding the old resort.
CONTEST: Jean Maxwell is giving away an ecopy to one lucky winner! Comment below to enter.
Dark, Horror, - novel
TBR reviewer: Brutally Honest
First, this is not a romance. Despite the cover and the excerpt there is no romance anywhere in this novel. It's futuristic horror with a dose of strange. The novel starts with a bang, literally. Lyle is intimate with another man. From here we learn he’s the owner of a sex club. He plans to get even with Abby, his lover’s former girlfriend after his lover Markus commits sucide because of her.
I had to unravel the mystery in the story which was a good thing. There are some twists and an initial interest that only grew as the story progressed. There is no set ‘good’ or ‘bad’ guy, it’s sort of like the lesser of two evils. The flashback was way too dragged out and I really lost interest as this played out. Toward the end it gets better but trimming the passage would have really made the story smoother. This is a dark story in more ways than one but I usually enjoy darker, crazier books as long as the plots clean and the editing decent. This definitely needed more editing and the flashbacks needed to be severely trimmed. Other than that, the story was solid and the characters unique. The ending was absolutely insane in a good way, the torture, the crazy twist.
I found this rather hard to rate. On one hand I sympathized with Lyle but at the same time I was worried for Abby. Either way you go, this story was hard to put down as it played out.
Overall, Breaking The man was a dark, twisted tale that I enjoyed reading.
Warning: Contains torture (piercing) and rape.
Abby and Paul walked hand in hand along the lower level of Corsica City's Red Light District. Busy streets full of rank, smoke-filled air, with the noise and hum of drudgery and decay illuminated the place like a heroin addict's high. They were nervous and felt wholly out of place, having not ventured into this part of town before. Occasion had never demanded it until now. 'Doing the job' held new meaning. Accepting the gig at Micheal's behest had taken some convincing, but the lucrative pay and the promise of 'one time only' swayed their acceptance. Illegal activities, they usually never ventured into. Work, up until this point, had been legit. Still, there was a living to be made, even this way, and both Abby and Paul liked their work in working together. They wouldn't have it any other way. With this knowledge, they passed beyond the velvet rope into Club Erosia to meet with the man who could hook them up with five hundred thousand in Republic credits.
Inside the club, darkness enveloped them, alongside the musky smell of burning incense. Candles burned on various tables inside faux, medieval archways. An attendant, dressed in all black, stoked the embers of a dying fire centered in the entrance of the place. Despite the display of 'warm and inviting', Abby shivered against the chill that seemed to thread its way through the room. A premonition? Perhaps. Paul, sensing her unease, placed his hand to
the middle of her back, providing warmth through the gauzy fabric of her dress.
"Yeah." She nodded. "I'm fine. Just fine. Just want to get this over with, you know."
Paul looked around. The attendant had walked over to them and now stood, his gaze on Paul, curiously appraising.
"May I help you?" the man asked.
"Yeah. We have a meeting with Lyle DuFant."
"Wait right here…" The man smiled. He set the poker in its holster and walked around the fireplace and out the entrance-way. Abby drew Paul along, following the man, until they reached another open doorway. Beyond it, she heard the sounds of music, voices, conversation. Although the front area was empty, save for the barkeep stocking bottles, there were people inside, just unseen. She glanced around and spied a seating area to the right of them, partially hidden by black beaded curtains. A few sofas and couches littered the space; fabrics of velvet and silk lined the cushions. Paul tugged at her sleeve, but she
continued, stepping through the wall of beads. Those couches had stains on them. No wonder they keep it so dark.
"What is it?" Paul asked.
"Just wondering who is it we're about to get involved with. I mean this place, I've heard of these type clubs, but—"
"We don't have to do this. Just say the word and we're out."
"Nah," she said after a beat. "Don't want Michael pissed at us for reneging on a done-deal. Besides, when would we stand to make this much money again? And who would set it up?"
"Okay." He sighed. "I'm with you. Whatever you want to do." He smiled reassuringly then leaned in for a quick kiss to the side of her face. She giggled at the contact, pleased. She was a tough broad, had to be, but Paul made her feel giddy, like a little girl in his arms, protected. She liked that and suspected he liked it, too.
CONTEST: Madame Z is giving away an ecopy to one lucky winner. Comment below to enter!
Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance - novel
TBR Reviewer: Shyla
Infinite Betrayal was slow to start, and I was tempted to put it down after the first sixty pages passed by with an overwhelming amount of details, background, and very little action. Fortunately I stuck the story out, and the action, passion and adventure kicked in. With twists, turns and a fresh take on shape shifters this tale left me impressed and eager to read more.
Mina is a woman who’s stuck at a turning point in her life, and unsure of where to go next. After losing her Mother she receives a mysterious letter that leads her to Germany. The Father she’s always thought to be dead is alive, and with nothing left to loose she sets off to find him, and hopefullya part of herself in the process. Once she arrives there she meets the sexy enigma known as Mathias. Sent by her Father the tempting French born man has her thinking wicked thoughts the first night they met. Luckily for her , the reality of their coming together is even more phenomenal. I can only describe their passionate encounters as Smex. The hot nasty, down and dirty melding of bodies we all need every now and then.
Mathias is his king’s best warrior sent to protect the daughter no one knew he had, until now. The attraction he feels for Mina is instant, and resistance is futile when instincts take over and he marks her. The discovery of her true heritage brings up painful betrayals and tests them both in ways they never imagined.
This is a wonderful read that will keep you turning pages as fast as you can read them once you get over the slow start. I recommend this books, especially if you love shifters.
Mina tried to turn again to go to her room. His fingers tightened slightly and he took the first step to loom over her. He inhaled slowly as if he was getting ready to deliver an unwanted speech. Mina narrowed her eyes and raised a hand to stop him from speaking. Instead of delving into the reasons he would not be leaving her side, he reached up with his free hand and grasped Mina’s raised palm gently. He released her arm and pressed her hand between both of his as if warming it. His green eyes darkened as Mina’s mouth fell open in shock. She stopped breathing, almost as if in expectation of what he was going to do. Very slowly and deliberately, he raised her hand to his mouth.
The blood in her veins stopped flowing as her knuckles came into contact with his warm lips. His mouth remained on her hand for what seemed like hours. Her fingers instinctively
curled inward and she fought the urge not to place her other hand in his hair and hold on tight. Jesus, what this man could probably do with that mouth. It might have been a while since Mina had had sex, but the flutter in her stomach reminded her she was probably due for some real quick.
Slowly removing his mouth from her hand, he took a slight nip at her skin with his teeth. Mina’s nipples immediately tightened against her shirt at the sensation. Mathias lifted
his thick lashes and she met his heated gaze. His eyes were warm and inviting. He didn’t let her hand go but simply started brushing the inside of her palm with the pad of his thumb. Mina was immediately aware of the wetness pooling between her legs at the mere idea of what could happen next. She felt chilled but about to melt at the same time. No words came to her. Only a feeling of guilt mixed with the tantalizing thought of letting him touch her more. She was way too turned-on to utter a word. With her mouth still open, she just stood
there and stared. His eyes were almost hypnotic. Her mind was a complete blank. All she knew was she did not want this man to let go of her hand.
She imagined he continued up the steps and led her behind him, like a lamb to slaughter. Once reaching her room, he would push her up against the door and crush his mouth to
hers, sending her into oblivion. He’d lace his hands into her hair and gently tug at the curls to force her closer. She’d arch against him to get the feel of his body against hers. Warm, hard and ready. His hands would move slowly down her back to grip her ass, lifting her against him. Wrapping her legs around his hips, she’d feel the hardness of his need for her and grind herself against it. She’d moan into his mouth that she wanted him desperately. He’d magically open the door, and within seconds, he’d be on top of her, burying her in the soft down comforter on top of the bed in her room. Gently moving his hands up her sides and underneath her sweater, he’d cup her breasts and move his thumbs expertly over her already hard nipples. Throwing back her head in ecstasy, she’d beg him to take her...
Wake up Mina!
She snapped out of her sexual trance to realize she had been grasping his hand hard enough to dig her short nails into his skin.
He slowly straightened his stance. Once again, she looked up into his gorgeous face. Was he smiling? Her hand still molded in his, Mina remained frozen in place. “Good night then,
Mina. Sleep well.”
Mina’s hand was slowly lowered to her side and his warm palms slipped away, leaving her wondering what the hell had just happened.
Very casually, Mathias turned and walked out of the hotel, closing the door firmly behind
Mina remained standing on the third step with her mouth open and her gaze glued to the closed front door of the hotel. “Holy shit.”
m/m, Romance, science fiction - novel
TBR Reviewer: Brutally Honest
This is another book in The Schism Universe series by Mark Alders. The first one I read was freaking fantastic and I’m anxious to see if the greatness continues. Sarge’s Angel is about tough Sarge buying a slave that he's fallen completely for but this 'angel' has a secret that could kill them both.
I’m not a fan of flashbacks. They tend to hinder the flow and muddle the story but apparently not in a Mark Alders book. I was thoroughly impressed. The flashbacks blended into the story beautifully. I also like how Alders includes foreskin on most his characters, if
not all. The erotica books I’ve read rarely have them uncut or don’t bother to get that detailed. It gives this science fiction world a little more jump into reality the way he describes the sex scenes. Holy hell, the sex scenes are so hot. Do not read this in public. Then there's this fantastic new world and the budding romance. The relationship building is magmatic between the smitten Sarge and the slave Hayden.
I did notice the editing was really bad in this book. Run-on, comma usage, repetition of words and other things were heavy enough to through me out of the world Alder’s created. The chapter ends were choppy and the story really could have been polished better. Thus, the four star rating.
Sarge’s Angel was a sexy addition to the Schism Universe Series. I can’t wait to read more of this world and the fantastic man on man goodness.
Paranormal, Romance - Novel
TBR Reviewer: Daniella
Nala Arpaiahas lived an isolated life since her parents died when she was very young. She knows she has some kind of power and being able to connect with other people´s minds makes her very suitable for her chosen profession as a psychiatrist. One day, Gabriel Ricardo shows up to tell her that she belongs to a community of magic-users and otherworldly creatures. An evil magician named Broncestan is after her and her abilities. Gabriel is her assigned guardian and he will take her to the safety of a magic mansion in Albania. Nala now has to learn about her family history and how to control her abilities, before the spell that has protected her expires on her 25th birthday and Broncestan can attack her.
I liked the magical world that Sara Trimble built, with many interesting characters and creatures. She has put enough of her own spin on things to make it different from other stories in the genre. It does take quite a long time before the main plot unfolds.
The love story between Nala and Gabriel didn´t grab me until the end. It starts with such instant attraction and Gabriel tries to resist, because he believes that he can´t do his job well if he is involved with Nala. That they are struggling with that issue feels valid, but most of the time it feels like what actually comes between them is that Nala. Gabriel and a whole
bunch of the other residents of the mansion act as hormonal, hot-headed and jealous teenagers when it comes to their love life. I understand that some jealousy and heart break can be needed to drive the plot forward and drive wedges between lovers, but some of the high school drama could have been left out.
I enjoyed Heart over mind.
Paranormal, Suspense, Romance - novel
TBR Reviewer: Luta Wolf
Dara MacKechnie is the chief mediator for the vampires, a peaceful job for the last eighty years but that’s all about to go down hill. When the body count starts to pile up she knows the peace treaty is in trouble. She knows she has no choice but to work with Anthony Caldwell, the head of the vampire council but they have a past. A past that makes it hard for either of them to trust but they will have to in order to make it out of this situation alive.
To say that I’ve read every kind of vampire book out there is an understatement but the author did a remarkable job in making this book refreshing. Everything about the plot stood out. The world that we are drawn into has an old worldly feel to it but also carries a taste of modern and edgy. I hesitate to compare it to anything but if my arm was twisted I’d lean toward comparing it to Underworld.
The lead character Dara even has that “I’ll kick your butt and take names later” type attitude. She never backs down from a challenge which I found pleasantly different to the more vulnerable heroines I’ve been reading lately. Anthony is the perfect compliment to Dara and even as they struggled against each other it was easy to see how well suited they were to each other. That was another thing that I truly enjoyed, the struggle between the two really built up the tension and passion leading to a more satisfactory read than an instant love.
Blood Rage is a sizzling hot must read for vampire/paranormal fans out there. I promise you won’t regret it.
Anthony held up his hands, watching her as she paused in front of him, clearly debating her course of action. It was a bit of a role reversal, as he was well-used to having her naked while he remained clothed. But he was inclined to give her her head and see where she led. “Now
“Sit.” In that effort, she rested her hands, silky smooth and warm, on his chest to urge him down.
Yes, he liked this more decisive, assertive woman. He cherished the memory of her innocence and enthusiasm, but he found it quite alluring, a woman who knew what she wanted. And clearly she wanted something beyond the obvious. He settled back on the couch, arms spread along the back. If he didn’t, he’d reach for her and end this now. Control,
His breath caught in his throat when she dropped to her knees between his legs and took him in her hands, stroked along his length. His world narrowed to just the two of them, everything not her fading rapidly as he thought only of the soft hands caressing him, something he’d long feared might never happen again. Anthony groaned. “You’re going to kill me, woman.”
A tiny, teasing smile crossed her face. “La petite mort, yes. That’s certainly the idea,” she said, cupping his balls. Warm breath tickled the length of him as she spoke.
His hands clenched into fists. He wouldn’t be able to take much of this, or he’d thoroughly disgrace himself by coming too soon. When she took him in her mouth, his eyes crossed. Gods, yes.
If Odin himself popped in and offered to take him off to Valhalla, he would turn the god down in a heartbeat, just to stay like this. It’d been so long.
BIG CONTEST: Tory Michaels is giving away an ecopy of this book and a $5.00 giftcard to one lucky winner! Comment below to enter. Contest ends March 23.
Erotica - novella
TBR Reviewer: Daneilla
Ryden and Rayne are berserkers, warriors of the Norse god Odin, fighting for king Harald. In the aftermaths of battle the berserkers are cursed by one of the goddess Freyjas sorceresses, a curse which will not let them find their true love and mate for a thousand years. When Ryden and Rayne meet Karli, a manager in an amusement park, they know they have found their mate. But has the curse been lifted? Are they free to love?
This book started out with a lot of promise. I love Norse mythology and being a born and bred Swede I could even understand the curse without needing translation ;) The berserkers and the background story woven for them was interesting. All berserkers come as a twin pair. Although Ryden and Rayne are alike in many ways they also have very different personalities. The plot might be a little confusing though, especially when reading the blurb. The curse on Ryden and Rayne is mostly there to make them suffer for a thousand years and then finding Karli in the modern day. The real danger to them and their mate is that Freyjais hunting the berserkers. She needs them to stay powerful and vital and to scorn Odin. She wants to use Karli to get to them.
At the beginning when Ryden and Rayne meet Karli, there is some nice build up when they are circling each other in the park, throwing glances at each other. You can feel the heat and longing between them. Then, to protect her they need to take her as their mate and they have to consummate their bond before the Nave, a night for mating when Karli will only be driven by her lust. Even though the two guys are hot, the sex wasn´t as good as it could have been. I never got the emotional bond, as the whole thing felt kind of forced. It was just an
instant pheromonal lust and they only seemed to know how to have their ménage in
one way, double penetration.
The real plot picks up in the end and there is some battle action, which put the story back on track. We also get glimpses of the other two berserker brother pairs during the story and there is some build-up for future stories. Those small insights intrigued me and I would be interested in reading their stories. This story is a quick read with some good parts to it. I think that the series as a whole has potential, especially if characters are developed more.