Review: Head over Heels by Annemarie Hartnett

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

That whole “no nookie” rule seemed like a good idea until Chrissie got under the covers with Sam.

When Chrissie declared a moratorium on hooking up for this group road trip, she didn’t think a miscommunication with a hotel desk clerk would put her in the same bed with Sam.

A total dork wrapped in a nice package, Sam has been the object of her vacation lust since day one. Once she’s huddled together under the covers with him the rules go out the window.

Can Sam and Chrissie turn their carefree holiday fling into something more?

Reader Advisory: This book contains some toy play.

I think I'm totally in love with this cover. So yes I just couldn't wait to start reading this book when I finally got my greedy hands on it. I adored Company of Fools and yes my expectations where high before I started reading. I expected a scorching hot and funny read to keep me warm in this brutal winter and that's exactly what I got.

In Head over Heels we meet a group of friends on an adventure trip through nature. Most of their group already escaped back to civilization and only 4 friends are left. Chrissie, our heroine is really attracted to the rather geeky Sam. But she has her own no nookie rule holding her back. Chrissie is a nice person most of the time but sometimes she starts to talk before she thinks- a think I can really relate too. She's also stubborn as hell and won't part with her own prejudices and "rules" no matter how stupid they are.

Sam is a sexy geeky guy and you know I love those.  He's full of surprises and not at all what you would think of when you imagine a geek (but those mostly never are what the name suggests). He's funny and so sweet at times- heart-meltingly cute. These two together can keep you warm- I loved those sex scenes. Very inventive but never too much. Just two young people having fun. The romance is light but I enjoyed the slow build up.

I always love how easy Ms Hartnett's stories flow. It's like talking to friends- easy and just natural. Her humor is exactly the kind I love and she made me giggle more than once. The storyline itself was a bit predictable at the end but I didn't really mind because she kept me smiling the whole time.

Head over Heels is a really hot and cute story- perfect to keep you entertained on a cold winter night. I know I will keep my eyes open for more of Ms. Hartnetts stories.

To learn more about Annemarie and her books please visit her website here.
Read other reviews @goodreads. Buy the book at @Total-E-Bound


ARC Review: Deadlock by Moira Rogers

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Carmen Mendoza's shapeshifter father abandoned her. Raised by her psychic mother, Carmen ignored her paternal family's political machinations--until the day they decided to use her in their bid for power. Trapped between two worlds and snared by a vicious spell meant to wake her inner wolf, Carmen's only hope is to trust the one man strong enough to soothe her darkest instincts.

Born a pureblood wolf, Alec Jacobson lives as a rebel, the black sheep alpha who protects the supernatural residents of New Orleans from wolf politics. Too bad he can't protect himself from his need for Carmen. Staking a claim on his enemy's niece will turn his city into a battleground, unless he can find a way to stop breaking the rules--and start making them.

After what felt like a never ending wait we finally get the chance to dive into the wonderful world of the Southern Arcana series again. I loved the first  books and Deadlock didn't disappoint at all. I just say Alec. *insert swoony voice*

Carmen Mendoza is an empath working as a doctor in the local independent hospital. She knows how the shapeshifter politics work first hand because her ambitious father left her and her family to secure his political station. She put her back on everything connected to this prejudiced and discriminating system and tries her best to stay out of it. But her family just won't let it go. Her uncle and father are working together to right the "wrong" he did by marrying her mother. They want her to accept an "appropriate" husband who had the right position in the werewolf society. But Carmen won't budge. She's a strong woman and won't give in. I love her- Carmen is compassionate, strong and won't back down even from the strongest alpha. Being an empath makes her better at her job and improves the way she understands and helps people.  I really liked her. She's a good person but her character didn't stand out enough.

But then we have Alec. *swoons* That guy makes my knees weak. He's the big bad alpha- possesive and protective of what he sees as his. Stubborn but also very sexy. He's a caretaker and sets everyone else's needs over his own. His past is branded with heartbreak and betrayal and he keeps his heart behind tons of shields to avoid being hurt again. I loved him to pieces. He's my kind of alpha hero. Strong, passionate, dirty but not overbearing or too stubborn. He always said the right things to make my toes curl and I really start to swoon again every time I think about him. He's in my top 5 heroes of 2010- and all mine. ;)

As always the worldbuilding and pace of this book was masterly done. I was drawn into the story from the start. This world is one of this rare gems that makes you think- it combines a paranormal world with a political system based on prejudices and intolerance that make you think about the world we live in. I love when a book makes me think. But the best thing about the Southern Arcana series for me is the way Moira Rogers includes the sidecast. Each story doesn't focus 100% on our couple but we also see the characters we loved in the previous books. And I so can't wait to read about Kat and Andrew- and I swear to god these two deserve a HEA. I so can't wait.

Deadlock is a great addition to this series. It's an action packed paranormal romance with a swoon worthy hero and a lovable heroine. Moira Rogers writes in a way that draws you in and won't let you go till you read the last word. For me her books are going on top of my tbr pile as soon as I get them. If you haven't started this series yet: what are you waiting for? Get your hands on Crux and believe me you won't regret it for one second. Great book in an awesome series.
To learn more about Donna and Bree (the author duo behind Moira Rogers) and their books please visit the Moira Rogers website here.

The Southern Arcana Series:
1. Crux: my review, reviews @goodreads
2. Crossroads: my review, reviews @goodreads
3. Deadlock: reviews @goodreads release date: January 4th
4. Cipher (Andrews book *g*) September 2011 ebook release / print release in 2012


Review: Black Wings by Christina Henry

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Excorting souls into the afterlife leaves Maddy little time for socializing-until devilishly handsome Gabriel Angeloscurro agrees to rent the empty apartment in her building. But when demons start appearing on Maddy's front lawn, she realizes there's more to her new tenant than meets the eye.

Finally an urban fantasy novel that is the way I like them. I nearly gave up on them after some disapointments in the last few months but Black Wings reminded  me why I love this genre. It has a great world-building, a funny and witty heroine and a  sidekick made of perfect. And yes, it also has a sexy hero- that was absolutely the icing on the top.

Black Wings is about Madeline "Maddy" Black, an agent of death. Her job is to deliver the souls of the newly deceased to the door that leads to the afterlife. She inherited that job from her mom and to say she's happy would be an overstatement. How satisfying can a job be if it doesn't pay for food or anything at all? She's a loner and not at all as socialized as she wished to be. Her independance isn't her choice but she does what she has to in order to survive. She has a wonderful sense of humor and made me snort more than once.
But with the arrival of Gabriel her whole life is turned upside down. Luckily Maddy is a strong woman and handles all these rather bad news very well. She tries to keep it together and most of the time she does. Although I loved how some things made her lose her temper.

Gabriel is a rather mysterious character at first. Everything about him seems to be a bit "shadowy" and all my inner alarm bells started to scream. Yes it seems that those are my hot guy detectors. While the story progresses we get a better view of him as a person and I have to say I'm in love. His story made my heart bleed and I really would love to see him getting a well deserved HEA. Gabriel develops into Maddy's connection to the new world she's faced with, like a guide who shows her how to act and what to say, or even more important what NOT to say. ;) He really does his best to help her survive it.

And I have to tell you about Beezle, Maddy's gargoyle sidekick and probably her only real friend in this world. He is her roommate but actually more like her supernatural mini-dad. He's a protective little fellow and can really show some mean temper when he thinks that Maddy gets herself in too much trouble. But on the other hand he has a popcorn and chocolate addiction and is really decorative so I totally forgave him everything else. ;)

Black Wings is set in a rather complex world based on Christian mythology. I have to admit all my knowledge about this is taken out of other fiction novels so I'm probably more than under-qualified to judge the correctness. That's why I won't even try to do that. I was very intrigued by everything but at some points I was a bit swamped with information. After 3/4 of the book I even had to ask a friend if I missed something. Perhaps a glossary would have helped keeping track of the mythological and political structure of this world.

I really liked the plot though. It is full of twists and surprising turns and will keep you glued to the pages. It made me nearly break my brain when I tried to figure it out. The story has a great structure and I already know I need to read more.

Black Wings is a wonderful debut novel. It showed me why I love urban fantasy-  wonderful world-building, witty and funny convos and a sexy guy who leads through the story. I can't wait to get my hands on Black Night, book 2 in this series.

To learn more about Christina and her books please visit her website here

P.S. I also interviewed Christina at Book Lovers Inc here and there's a giveaway too (US/Can only). 

Read other reviews @Goodreads, buy the book @Book Depository


Review: The Company of Fools by Annemarie Hartnett

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Kate Doucette’s trying to get her life together. She’s working full time at Mike MacNab’s bar, going to school, and she just kicked out her Do-Nothing boyfriend. Things are looking up but with the construction going on in the bar, her money trouble's looming over her, and her personal life in the toilet, Kate’s on a ledge and Mike is there to talk her down. One night she wants more than a pep talk; Kate asks her charming and handsome boss to spend a weekend in bed with her.

What could be a bigger stress-reliever than two days of bedroom Olympics with a guy who’s as hot for her as she is for him? The only problem is that he wants more than a weekend and it seems like he wants to fix her life for her. She adores Mike, but the last thing she needs is another headache in the form of Mr. Fixit.

This was my first Annmarie Hartnett novel but it will definitely not be my last. The Company of Fools is a witty, funny and wonderful sexy read. I can't say enough how much I enjoyed this book. Ms Hartnett took me completely by surprise with her incredible humour and the admirable sensuality she puts into her sex scenes. But lets start at the beginning.

Our heroine Kate is really something special. She's a young and open girl working in a bar besides trying to get her Master's degree. She's loving her job at the bar, her collegues are nice and she really enjoys the atmosphere, most of the time. But Kate knows she wants more in her life. She wants to reach her goals and she wants to do it on her own, no matter how hard it is. She loves her independance but she also loves to have fun, the dirty kind. *wink* I loved her humor and her wit. That one would be a great friend to have. It probably never gets boring with her.

And then we have Mike, the successful bar owner and lady killer.  He's an entertainer and adventurer  at heart- you really don't notice that he's already 40. People like to be around him, especially the women seem to flog around him as if he's made of chocolate and after reading a bit about him I can really understand that. *swoon* He isn't someone who just works, he's taking everything seriously and wants to excel at what he's doing. He seems to always want to evolve- to get better at what he does or start something new as soon as the old thing is working on it's own. He's also a fixer and he wants to make every thing right for the people he cares about- including Kate. But as you can imagine she doesn't take it lightly to be "fixed".

When Kate decides to change their relationship from boss-employee to friends with benefits she didn't see what she stumbles into. She was sure that he would be  a good lay but never in her life would she have imagined what she got and belive me I didn't either. That guy has, as he stated himself in this book, way better toys than she has. Just WOW and O_O, but in a good way.  They seemed perfect for each other : they actually really like each other, had great convos, made each other smile and they fit each other perfectly in bed.

But both are really temperamental and mostly speak before they start to think. I really like that because I can be like that from time to time with BF too. They just stumbeled from one discussion into the next and it really broke my heart to see them driven apart by their own stubborness.

The Company of Fools is such a wonderful read. I loved the characters, the pace was perfect and the sex was intoxicating. I don't think I can say one bad thing about it- this novel is an absolute keeper. Ms Hartnett is definitely an author I will keep my eyes open for- I'm already craving more.

To learn more about Annemarie and her books please visit her website here.

And be sure to come back on Monday November 29th because I will be interviewing her and she already told me there will be a giveaway. *g*

Read other reviews @goodreads. Buy the book at @LooseID


Review: Salome at Sunrise by Inez Kelley

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Bryton Haruk sets out on a suicide mission to stop the bloodthirsty Skullmen from terrorizing the war-weary Land of Eldwyn. Consumed by guilt over the death of his wife, Bryton seeks revenge and reunion in the afterlife with his lost love. His purpose is determined, his bravery unmatched, until the queen casts a spell to save Bryton from himself.

Salome is that spell. A bird-shifter, she can harness the earth’s breeze and take the form of a beautiful, innocent woman. Her challenge is to harness Bryton’s pain and guide him to peace. She entrances and irritates him, tempting Bryton from his mission. Even as he gives in to the passion between them, Bryton insists on mounting a solo attack on the brigands’ compound, and Salome fears her love won’t be enough to save him

Salome at Sunrise is the second book in a romantic fantasy series but I noticed that after I already started the novel. Usually I really hate to read books out of order, it's one of those OCDs you just can't shed, but Salome at Sunrise drew me in nonetheless. At times I noticed that this has to be a book in a series and I felt like I missed some of the good stuff in the first book (btw it's Myla by Moonlight) but I never felt left behind or as if I missed any vital information.

Salome at Sunrise is set in a wonderful fantasy world full of magical creatures and with an overal medieval touch. Ms Kelley introduces her world on the go. We learn more with every step our hero takes and I loved to discover her world full of magic.

This novel is all about Bryton. He's on a journey of vengence. He tries to bring justice to his wife's murderer and he will give all his wit and might to reach this goal. He is obsessed with this cause and can't see anything else. Even when Salome is send his way he won't falter. He's stubborn as hell and just won't see reason. He was quite infuriating at times. I would have loved to just kick him where it hurts most even though he was kind of sweet and sexy at times but still he made me angry more than once.

Salome is a spell send to Bryton by Myla, the queen of Eldwyn. She is a peacemaker and the only reason for her existence is bringing peace to Bryton's soul. She has the ability to shift into any bird she wants. She's a timid and shy girl but she can show her claws if she feels the need to do so. She is an innocent, she has nearly no knowledge about how this world works. Even daily chores like cooking are something new and exciting for her. She's a kind and loving person who sets everything before her own needs and wishes. A truly selfless person. She's also able to feel what Bryton feels and so she senses every turmoil or struggle he lives through. Soon she loses her heart to this dark and brooding man who seems to push her away at every chance he gets.

It was so cute to watch Salome learn how to live in this world. Even more entertaing was to watch Bryton and Salome fight and struggle. There are moments even the shy spell Salome loses her cool and her potty mouth is something you should keep your eyes open for. *wink* The romance between these two developes in small little steps but the chemistry is there from the start. I was fascinated by those two and their friendship, love and adoration captivated me. It felt so pristine and pure.

The pace of this story is perfect. I loved how we slowly venture to the final fight- the one thing we all knew would come. The only thing I can critizise is that the solution at the end was a bit too easy for my taste but I can't really begrudge them their HEA. These two deserve it.

Salome at Sunrise is a real pageturner. The world building is perfectly done and Ms Kelley's writing is instantly compelling. You will devour page after page without noticing how much you already read. Highly recommended fantasy romance!

To learn more about Inez and her books please visit her website here.
Read other reviews @Goodreads. Buy the book @Carina Press.


Review: One Four All by Julia Rachel Barrett

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Lira Pakan, heir to the Throne of Zhinshu, has vanished. Her zealots gather along the border with the neighboring state of Khubuk, awaiting the outcome of her father's pleas to the World Court.

Captain Tanner Kepp serves in the elite Special Forces of Khubuk. When the captain is ordered to choose two men to accompany him to Land's End, an isolated compound on the maritime border between Khubuk and Zinshu, the last thing he expects to find is the missing princess.

Captain Kepp, Arms Master Cer Watso and Sergeant Redda Till realize they must rescue her and avert all out war.

The princess, however, has other plans. These men can be more than her rescuers. According to the law of Zhinshu, she must choose three men as consorts. Her people say: "one to guard the right hand, one to guard the left hand, and one to guard the back, always."

When Julia told me she wrote her first menage I was immediately sure I had to read it. Julia's novels are always hot so I imagined a menage with THREE men would be scorching hot. And I was right.

One Four All feels like a contemporary fantasy novel. It's set in a kind of parallel universe. They seem to have the same technology we have but their religious and moral views are different from ours. Why fantasy? Because we have a princess and a king and those always stand for fantasy in my eyes. Yes I'm full of prejudices. I loved how this world was build up. Not through one big info dump but more through the story-telling We learn everything on the way- with a little tidbit here and there.

The story starts with 3 soldiers on the edge of diving into a war with the neighboring country, Zhinshu. But out of nowhere they get send away on a different mission. They should guard the wife of an "important" politician and they aren't really happy about this development at all. When they arrive at the mansion this changes nearly immediately. They can feel that something is not the way it should be. And when they lay their eyes on Lira for the first time they know that she's not there out of her free will. I loved that Kepp, Red and Wat were all so different in character. They all have their own appeal but I have to admit I had an extra soft spot for Red. He was funny and he won my heart ASAP.

Lira is the heir of the crown of Zhinshu.  She got kidnapped by this crazy politician and he wants her to bear his children. He's not really happy about her being so complicated and denying him but luckily that's the way it works. She can't get pregnant if she's forced to have sex so he has to bring her to do it willingly. Not easy because Lira is a strong woman and even under threats and ransom she won't back down and give herself to him. She suffers through every torture he throws her way but her iron will never diminish. But she is relived when she first meets our three heroes because she can feel deep inside that they will be her rescue. She is a wonderful character, strong and made for being a queen. She knows her way around people and she knows how to defend herself. She's comfortable with herself and it shows in her actions. I really liked that girl.

The sex in this book is hot. Oh my this novel is made for a cold night at home. As you can imagine three guys and a woman is much and I have to admit at some points a bit too much for me. It was always sexy as hell but at some moments I thought it would be better with one guy less. See I'm not that greedy. But I still enjoyed it though.

The story itself is full of twists and turns and definitely has some actions. Onces or twice I sat straight on my couch and just couldn't read fast enough to see what would happen next. I always love how Julia makes her characters interact. It feels like real people would talk to each other and it always reminds me of talking to her. Her books are as she is, you just have to like them.

One Four All is a highly erotic and heartfelt story.The story will draw you in and the characters will make you smile more than once. Recommended for all erotica and menage lovers.

To learn more about Julia and her books please visit her website here. She has a great blog there too. You don't want to miss that.

Other reviews @goodreads, but the book @BookStrand


Mini Review: Moonlight Madness by Megan Hart

Thursday, November 4, 2010

"One Night Only!" When Rhea's offered the bargain of a lifetime on a unique fur coat, she doesn't know it will change her life forever. Short erotic fiction by the author of best-selling novels Dirty, Broken, No Greater Pleasure and more!

When you need something entertaining for your break at work this is the story for you. Moonlight Madness is an intiguing story with many aspects that caught my attention. First we have the mystery of the the fur coat store with an unbelievable Moonlight-Sale no woman could resist- spooky salesman included. We have an amazing hot dancefloor scene and yes we visit a bedroom too. This story mixes an fascinating story, wonderful characters, smex and horror. Yep I would have never thought that this would work, even less in such a sexy short read but at the end I was really looking like this O_O and one or two ewwwws escaped my mouth.
The characters are fascinating and I could relate to the heroine. Her struggles are something every woman knows from time to time and it makes you highly sympatic to her. When we meet the hero Ted my heart melted into a puddle of goo. I love when men appreciate a woman like this. Very nice.
The story has a great pace and the plot is appropriate for the length.

Moonlight Madness was perfect as a Halloween read but it's also a nice thrill for your short reading break. And I'm not sure I mentioned enough that it's hot.

To learn more about Megan and her books please visit her website here.

Read other reviews @goodreads. Buy the book @smashwords only $0.99


Review: Midnight Kiss by Robyn Carr, Victoria Dahl, Jean Brashear

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Take a risk.
At the inaugural New Year’s Eve party at Jack’s Bar, two lonely revelers decide the best balm for their broken hearts might just be each other.

Find the perfect work-life balance.
When a flinty lawyer with a bad-boy addiction meets the quintessential nice guy, sparks fly that consume their expectations of life and love.

Get those finances in order.
Working over the holidays on a messy bank takeover is made worse for two federal specialists by an ill-advised kiss that will never happen again...right?

I requested this book from netgalley because I love Victoria Dahl. She is hilarious and it's never wrong to try some new to me authors. So I grabbed this chance and I yep it was a win. All three stories in this anthology are about this special moment when the new year starts with a big bang.

Midnight Confessions by Robyn Carr
That was my first glimpse into Ms Carr's writing and I have to admit I expected a bit more. We meet a rather depressed and pessimistic heroine. Sunny is nothing like her name. She suffers from a bad breakup- one where you are the only one in front of the altar. I know that is bad and it probably makes you see the world with different eyes but it didn't hep me like the heroine. She was just too negative for my taste. Drew is a medical resident who also had a bad break-up but he handles it way better than Sunny. The whole story is more about him "healing" her. He tells her how he sees life and how he went on after the end of his last relationship. I would have loved to actually read more about these two and how their love developed. This story had too much baggage for my taste. The writing was great but the smex was missing. Yes I can be greedy.

Midnight Surrender by Jean Brashear
I never read Ms Brashear either but I'm 100% sure I want to do exactly that. Her writing caught my attention from the start, her voice is wonderful and her characters so much fun. Our heroine Jordon is a man-eater- she lives a free and independent life. She's an attorney and stands on her own feet. When she wants something. especially a man, she grabs one and pushes him away when she has enough. I actually like her even though she was annoying from time to time. Our hero Will is an Irish hunk who searches for the perfect woman to care for him- including sewing, gardening and cooking. Anyone else looking like this O_o ? So yes he has some old fashioned ideas but believe me he makes up for it with being totally sexy. I really would take one of those men. I like how those two fought and made up. *wink* They are so different and it was really enjoyable to watch them find their way. Wonderful story that will leave you wanting more.

Midnight Assignment by Victoria Dahl
Finally at last the story I waited for. I was totally proud of myself for not just skipping the first 2 stories to start with this one. I didn't even read the blurb before I started this book so I was very surprised to find it set in a "financial" setting. Yep, at first I thought. Booooooring but it really wasn't. It more one of those naughty office stories- you know these two shouldn't get involved but you cheer them on like a maniac because you know you will love every second of it. And I loved everything. The character are as always funny and witty- not only the main couple. We find some wonderful side characters in this book. I also liked how Ms Dahl introduced her characters through the story- it accompanied the unfolding of the story and gave Midnight Assignment a nice touch. I loved how the story developed- I love this theme of two people being apart because of a misunderstanding. I loved how they figured it out. *wicked grin* As always Ms Dahl's sex-scenes are made of hawtness. I loved every second. Definitely my favorite in this anthology.

Midnight Kiss is a very entertaining anthology with a nice cast of characters that will leave you craving more. Highly recommended!

Read other reviews @Goodreads, buy @The Book Depository


Review: The Kiss Test by Shannon McKelden

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Margo Gentry's life is perfect. She loves her job as a DJ for Manhattan's only country music station, and she has a great boyfriend who accepts her need to avoid marriage and tolerates her Elvis obsession-even the velvet Elvis painting in their bedroom.

But then it all falls apart. The radio station changes formats and fires all the DJs. Margo's boyfriend decides he wants kids and a house in the suburbs and kicks her to the curb. And to top it all off, her Mom is getting married-for the 11th time! -and expects Margo to be there as maid of honor.

With no job and no place to live, Margo has to bunk on the couch of her best friend, Chris, whose revolving bedroom door has played host to half the women in New York-at least, the ones who pass his "kiss test." Worse, he's insisting she attend her mother's wedding, and he's personally driving her cross-country to ensure she shows up.

Forget about surviving the road trip-can their friendship survive The Kiss Test?

I really hoped I would like this book but unfortunately I couldn't. I just had too many problems with the characters and how the story unfolded.  The first few pages I liked the heroine and everything sounded really promising but after the first chapter this book lost me.

Margo is an independant woman living in NYC. She's working as the morning DJ at a Country radio station and loves her life the way it is. A great job, a boyfriend who likes their relationship the easy way it is without any marriage and kids plans in their future. But it gets even better- she wins an award for best country DJ in the US and she can't believe how lucky she is. But then everything starts to crack and she's left with nothing besides her love for Elvis and her best friend Chris. I think that's the way the author wanted the heroine to be seen, but for me she was more like a self centered child at times. She seemed to be unaware of how other people see her or feel about her. Margo has definietely too much denial in herself for me. She always wanted to be seen as independant and strong, but for me her fears of accepting anyone else to help her or show her any kindness made her not very likable. She was sometimes even a bit TSTL for me. Some things were so obvious and she didn't see them coming at all. I wanted to slap her silly.

Then we have Chris. He's a heart-breaker and full of charm. He has this certain appeal that gives woman this mushy and warm feeling inside and makes them forget everything else in their lives. He likes sports to the extreme and has the body to prove it. I actually liked him sometimes. He was fun and witty and yeah at some points he would have won my heart.. But on other occasions I thought WTF is that guy thinking. In the middle of the book he lost all his hero appeal for me with this one huge fiasco he produced out of nowhere.

The story was okay. I liked the idea of the roadtrip but some things happened I just couldn't accept at all. It's hard to say what I didn't like without spoiling the book, so that's why I'm all mysterious here. I didn't like how the characters acted, they did really stupid things,  in my opinion. Things I would have never been able to forgive a friend. And yes I think that makes me prude and closed-minded but that's the way I am. I personally have mostly male friends and never onces would they have even thought about doing something like the hero did in this book. For me it felt like the totally betrayal of his "best" friend- the one person in his life who's always there. It feel like I ranted about this for hours. (thanks Caro for listening to my bitching). Also at the end where some revelations who were just too easy for me and some were even unbelievable. But I won't start about this now or this review will never end.

Ms. McKelden's writing is really good though. It has a good flow and I think it was one of the reasons I didn't give up on this book. It compelled me to keep going and I couldn't stop- even when I thought about throwing the book at the wall.

I would have actually liked this book if there weren't the problems with our main couple. I think this book hit all my pet peeves (okay nearly all). I know many reviewers loved this book, I think I'm just not made for this kind of story.
To learn more about Shannon and her books please visit her website here.
Other Reviews:
- Sabrina @About Happy Books 5 out of 5 stars
- @Goodreads

Purchase the book @Carina Press


Review: Undertow by Moira Rogers

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Victor left behind a life of crime to focus on a new vision--helping his alpha build an island sanctuary for werewolves. Harsh experiences prepared him for the hardships involved, except when it comes to dealing with the young female refugees of the brutal Boston pack--especially Simone, who rouses his inner wolf like no other. A woman he must resist, or risk becoming just the latest man to make demands on her.

Born to wealth and privilege, Simone lost everything when she fell for the seductive whispers of the textile heir who turned her. Once adrift, now she is fired by a new sense of purpose--the chance to broker peace between werewolves and European wizards. Yet even as Europe beckons, her instincts--the same ones that led to trouble before--keep drawing her back to Victor.

During a sailing trip to the mainland for supplies, Victor finds it impossible to hold himself aloof from the warm, engaging Simone. And when a winter storm traps them together during a full moon, she breaks through his walls so easily and completely, the question is no longer how he'll stay away, but how he'll let her go.

Each time I think it can't get any better Moira Rogers proves me wrong. I really liked A Safe Harbor but I loved Undertow. Perhaps it's because I already knew the setting but I think it's more because of the wonderful characters you find in this novel.

Undertow features Simone and Victor, two wolves from different worlds. Simone is stronger than you would expect from someone who was in the group of woman Edwin horded around himself. She isn't as much damaged by this as the rest of the ladies, she suffers more from the guilt she puts on herself. She feels responsible for not helping the girls even though that wasn't something she could have done herself. She needs to feel respect and that is one thing Victor doesn't seem to give her, at least in her eyes. She only sees him turning away everytime she gets near him and the only logical  explanation she can  come up with is that he hates her and just can't stand to look at her. How wrong she is. *evil grin* Simone is the comfort of our little wolf pack. She's the person everyone turns to for emotinal reassurance and help when they are afraid to turn to someone else. She's warm and welcoming and knows how to sooth an agitated wolf. A wonderful woman who highly underrates herself.

Victor is one of those dark and brooding heroes, my favorite kind by the way, and he's completely smitten with Simone. He wouldn't admit it if you asked him, even less when you use the word smitten. He's rather serious about everything and sometimes he seems to be even stern but he has a soft spot. He's a thinker and when he set his mind it's hard to sway him. He's also really compassionate and doesn't want to hurt anyone. Again I noticed that Moira Roger's heroes  aren't the sterotypical alpha shifter - they seem to be more caring and loving. Not that most alpha males aren't but these heroes are more warm, yes they are still hot *wink* but for me they are so much more.

The story of Undertow is adventurous, stormy, heartwarming and scorching at times. I love the dynamics of the character interactions- they did everything the way I would expect them to do it without being predictable. I already have some side characters I want to get their own books. These series is highly addictive- it has everything I want and more.
Make sure you don't miss this addition to a wonderful series.
To learn more about Moira Rogers please visit their website here.

Building Sanctuary Series:
1. A Safe Harbor: my review, other reviews @GoodReads, buy @MB&M
2. Undertow: other reviews @GoodReads, buy @MB&M


Review: Harvest Moon by Krista D. Ball

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Cursed, abused, and desperate to know her future, Dancing Cat sneaks a glimpse inside her tribe’s Sacred Bundle, a powerful source of spirit magic. Instead of the future, she sees her most powerful ancestor, Small Tree and incurs her wrath. Small Tree strips Dancing Cat of everything —her home, her identity, even her gender – and drops her in the middle of enemy lands.

Injured, and in a strange, new body, she is befriended by Bearclaw who is on a spirit quest. He offers her assistance and asks for nothing in return; a kindness Dancing Cat had forgotten existed. She struggles to weave a path around the obstacles of friendship, identity, and longing in order to survive her eventual return home to face even further punishment.

And she does it while wearing someone else's skin.

When Krista asked me to review her novella Harvest Moon I was a bit unsure at first. It's not what I usually read but I thought why not and gave it a try. I won't tell you more about the story because this novella only has 35 pages and the description already says everything. 

In Harvest Moon we meet Dancing Cat, the Cursed One. She's a young woman living in band of people who hate her and don't see her as more than dirt. She's lonely and desperate too. For the last two years no one really  touched her or said something nice to her. I really felt for Dancing Cat but at times she also seemed really immature to me. She's always telling that everything is not her fault and never really says why. It felt like her being childish and stubborn. Later in this story the reason is revealed and I felt bad for judging her too quickly. I also would have wished to learn more about her past messenger job. It's said that it's unusual for a woman to do that but there isn't an explanation why Dancing Cat was one. 

Bearclaw is such a nice character. He's pretty mysterious at first but with time we discover what kind of man he is. I have to admit at first I imagined him as an old guy and I was a bit confused when the attraction between these 2 started. 

That brings to one point I didn't like so much in this novella. I found myself often imagining the setting around our heroine and I couldn't. I had a picture of the direct surrounding but the general landscape just eluded me. I like the insight into the Native American way of life  and the characters were nicely developed. The overall story plot was nice, at the end it was a bit too easy for me taste but everything fit together and left me with a satisfied smile on my face. 
All in all a good fiction novella with a touch of romance- you should give it a try.

To learn more about Krista and her book please visit her website here.

Other reviews @goodreads, buy the book @Muse It Up Publishing


ARC Review: Hurt Me So Good by Joely Sue Burkhart + Giveaway

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

One sub to please the Master…in any way he wishes.

Victor Connagher is no stranger to the Dallas BDSM scene. As CEO of a risqué cable channel that caters to adventurous adults, he ensures the lifestyle is portrayed in a positive light. He even supports a local bondage club. Yet behind the cool, confident mask, Victor lives in fear.

Once, and only once, he lost control of his inner Dom—and it cost him his fiancée. Now, no one knows how hard he works to keep his darker appetite for pain buried. No matter how much his saucy, confident associate producer makes his fingers itch to once again take up his riding crop.

Shiloh Holmes is a sub, but she’s no doormat. She’s always suspected Victor has the skills to feed her insatiable need for pain, and now she’s found the perfect way to crack his formidable control. Develop a new reality show, America’s Next Top sub…and dare him to compete.

Week after week, as Shiloh fearlessly challenges the real Victor to come out of hiding, he realizes his past mistake was only a blow to his pride. If he loses Shiloh, he could lose his heart.

Warning: Explicit sex, BDSM, reality television, a very reluctant Dom, an audacious sub willing to do anything to win for him, and one very wicked riding crop.

When Hurt Me So Good arrived in my inbox I was thrilled to finally read Victor's story. Joely teased us for months with little snippets and I was desperate to finally read this book. I knew he would be more intense than Conn but wowza I didn't expect this. *fans herself* So I should warn everyone if you're not fond of BDSM this book isn't for you.

Victor is the CEO of VCONN, a local Dallas TV channel which specialize in the more erotic topics. He is a Master at heart and for him pain is more like sex than anything else. He doesn't only like to deliver the pain, he also uses it on himself if there's no other way to relieve the pressure building inside him. Victor is 100% sure that no woman would be willing to freely accept what he has to give. He had this one traumatic incident with his ex-fiancée- she wasn't prepared for his darker side because he hid it through their relationship and he scared her away- big time. Now he's afraid that he is just too much. So he keeps this side of himself under lock and key. It hurt me so much to see him suffer. He completely believes that he will never find someone who truly can take it all. When he meets Shiloh he is immediately attracted but he struggles with accepting her surrender and promise of submission. He's afraid of hurting her in a bad way and that she will run away and leave him behind- alone and heartbroken. This would break his heart and this time it would be broken for good. At first for me it was hard to see this strong and dominant Master with so much doubt and conflicts in himself. He should be the strong and confident one but it gave him more "realness". I never really like these perfect characters in books and Victor is just exactly right for my taste. He was demanding at some points and yes perhaps one scene was a bit too "intense" for me but it's all about pushing your limits and yes I enjoyed it a bit perhaps. *wink*

Shiloh is one kind of a woman. She's strong, intelligent and knows what she wants: Victor. She's been working at VCONN  for some time now and wants to get closer to Victor without looking like a desperate underling trying to catch his attention by all means e.g. walking naked in his office. Since day one he seems to ignore her and she just has to know if he really is the Master she believes him to be. She sees her chance with a new show and when he accepts her challenge she can finally get closer to him and see him like he really is.

As you can imagine this book is full of erotic scenes. Yes most are really intense and I'm sure I wouldn't survive any of this. It's hard to explain but even though I don't share the inclination for that much pain I could always see and feel why the characters did this and that. I think it speaks highly of Joely's writing that she didn't lose my attention even when her characters did thinks I wouldn't even consider in my darkest moments. It was always really erotic and sometimes also shocking. A fascinating combination that caught me unguarded at moments. How can I find something erotic and at the same moment think it must be hurting too much.

Joely drew me in no matter where the action went. Her story-telling is compelling and fascinating. I loved her characters and I can't wait to read more about the other characters we met in Hurt Me So Good. I highly recommend this book to all erotic lovers with at least a bit of inclination towards BDSM in their books.
Extraordinaire writing with a compelling fascinating and highly erotic story- Victor just won't lose you attention. It's not his name for nothing. ;)

To learn more about Joely and her books please visit her website here. You can also read the free prequel Lie To You here.

- Read other reviews @goodreads 
- pattepoilues aka The HEA Lover's review @ Book Lovers Inc. 
- soleil noir' review @Black Sun Reviews 
Buy Hurt Me So Good @MBaM

Thanks to Joely one lucky commenter will win an ebook copy of Hurt Me So Good.

Just leave a meaningful comment on this review or ask Joely a question. She will visit through the day and try to answer all the things you want to know. ;)

Please leave me a way to contact you (email in blogger profile or twitter name works for me).

Giveaway ends on Tuesday October 12th and I will announce the winner on Wednesday.

Good Luck!


ARC Review: Selfish is the Heart by Megan Hart

Monday, October 4, 2010

The national bestselling author of No Greater Pleasure delivers a new novel featuring a reluctant student of seduction.

To escape an arranged marriage, Annalise Marony decides to become a Handmaiden of the Order of Solace. But she is thwarted at every turn by Cassian, a teacher of the faith, who must test her dedication. Older than most of the girls, Annalise knows that she will be expected to please a patron in pleasures of the flesh-and she is not shy about teasing Cassian. And as they both play out the game of master and student, the secrets in their souls will either tear them apart-or bind them together forever.

Before I start this review I have to give a shout out to pattepoilue. She is one of the nicest and loveliest persons I ever met and without her I wouldn't have had the opportunity to read this book. Thank you! And thanks to Megan Hart too, for being such a wonderful writer and person.

Megan Hart did it again- she wrote a romance novel different from anything I ever read before. Sure we have the romance and the usual struggle till we get to our Happily Ever After but the way we get there is again something so unique, it will catch you flat-footed.

I enjoyed the first 2 books in The Order of Solace Series and I was always curious how these Handmaiden studied their profession before their first patron. I think I had many things in common with Annalise there, we both were full of prejudices and false ideas about how naughty this education would be.

Annalise went to the Motherhouse for the wrong reasons. She wanted to escape an arranged marriage. She is bethroted to her gay best friend but she knows with all her heart that they both will be unhappy in an union like this. She had to find a way out of this without making their lives even harder as they already are. So she
feigned a vision and ventured to the Order to become a Handmaiden. She is a strong heroine with a will of steel. She never backs down or is not once afraid to say what she thinks. She's not one of those cold hearted woman though, she is full of compassion and understanding for others. She stands up for what she believes and seems to be fearless in her actions. On her her journey to the motherhouse she meets the dark and broooding Cassian and he leads her astray. Later she discovers that he's her teacher and not only this first meeting makes them clash together more than ones. They don't often agree about anything and their attraction to each other isn't helping them either.

Cassian has his own struggles to live through. He worked hard to become the hard looking and untouchable teacher he is now. He likes to be on his own, unbothered by the rest of the world. He likes to bath in his guilt without interruptions. And Annalise just won't let him hide behind his cold mask- she always picks at him without mercy but still he just can't bring himself to not care for her even though she's a nuisance.

It was totally refreshing to read about those two. It's really not your typical romance. Most of the time they are fighting and you always think now they will make up. *wink* I loved how Annalise was never afraid to tell Cassian and everyone else what she thinks but never was too much. I loved that she knew how to push his buttons and it was wonderful to watch them grow closer with every single fight. I think this is one of the facts why I love Megan Hart's books so much. She never goes the traditional way and so it never gets boring for us as the reader. I think Ms. Hart describes it wonderfully in this book:
In her dreams, in the fae stories, such a declaration was always met with a kiss and an embrace, with mingled laughter and tears and followed by a wedding.
This was not a fae story.

Selfish is the Heart is by far my favorite Order of Solace novel. The heroine is wonderful independent and strong- I could completely relate to her. The hero is just wonderful broody and dark and both together made my heart ache. This series is so different to every thing else I read in this genre so far. As always  I adore Ms. Hart's writing and her words just enthrall me from the first page.
Wonderful exotic fantasy romance- you won't be able to put it down and it won't leave your thoughts long after you closed it.

To learn more about Megan Hart and her books please visit her website here.

Read other reviews @Goodreads, buy @Book Depository



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