October Wrap Up…

Well October was a big, big month for some great books, both existing and new series. I thought since we probably all managed to tear through them, we could maybe give our impressions.

Archangel’s Shadows: Nalini Singh‘s latest Guild Hunter novel featured Ashwini and Janvier, with a big helping of Elena and Raphael. I actually was lucky enough to have Nalini send me an ARC, which was awesome, but I still loved the book. Ash and Janvier were long-time favorites, so to finally get their story was a real treat. But not only did I like their arc, but the developments for several other characters, as well. Just when I think I have a favorite of the seven a new one pops up and steals the show, and this time around it was the mysterious Naasir. I can honestly say that at this point, I just can’t choose who I like more. Another great installment of a favorite series.

Seventh Grave and No Body: Darynda Jones‘ latest was a bit different for me. I liked it, but can’t say I loved it. There was a lot going on, a lot of development for the characters, and a ton of action, but there were times Charley just didn’t do it for me. I think it is like Doug said in his review – she skimmed the border of TSTL in a few cases. As always, her heart was in the right place, but she still needed to calm down a bit in a few cases. I do have to say that it is a pivotal book, and definitely not one to miss if you are a fan of the series, but it isn’t one I will grab for a re-read.

Burn For Me: What can I say? This new series from Ilona Andrews‘ was one I have been anticipating for months and months, and I was starting to worry that maybe I had built it up too much in my head and it couldn’t live up to my expectations. Totally wrong – I really, truly loved it. Great characters, lots of action, very cool world-building that wasn’t bogged down like I found the first Kate Daniels book. It hit the ground running, and didn’t need a ton of set up to make you understand what was going on. I am notoriously hard on female characters, but Nevada became an instant favorite. Ditto Mad Rogan. I know I sound gushy, but it was one of my top reads of the year, and I am stoked for the next one (whenever it may be). I have already read it twice, actually, and it was just as good the second time around.

What did you think of your big reads this month? Anything stand out for you, good or bad? Did October’s releases live up to the hype, or leave you wanting more?

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32 thoughts on “October Wrap Up…

  1. Amber Hughes says:

    O.M.G…Naasir. I have always loved Bluebell (still do of course), but Naasir is DEFINITELY one of my favorites now. Loved him 🙂

    Just started Burn for Me. Only about 70 pages into it, but definitely liking it so far. I really like the premise.

  2. Emily says:

    Okay, my most anticipated PR reads for October were Immortal (last of the Fallen Angels series by J.R. Ward), Tempted by Midnight (novella of the Midnight Breed series by Lara Adrian), Seventh Grave and No Body (Charlie Davidson series by Darynda Jones), Archangel’s Shadows (Guild Hunter series by Nalini Singh), and Burn for me (new Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews).

    Immortal- Best possible ending for the series. The whole point of the game became clear. True to form, it wasn’t spelled out, but Ward has a knack for showing instead of telling and letting you figure it out. I love that about her books. So, the devil was not only defeated, but actually learned a lesson about evil being very lonely, and Jim finally got together with his true love, Cissy. The angels, Eddie and Adrian, will also be featured in a Black Dagger Brotherhood book on a mission featuring Lassiter. That’s going to be awesome. This book was a total emotional rollercoaster; sad one minute, happy the next, then anxious and excited. I went from the last page right back to page one to read it again. It was great!

    Tempted by Midnight- Never actually got around to reading it. I got bored with it before even starting it. The last novella for the series was a complete flop so I decided against this one, even though I had been looking forward to it. Lara Adrian can write a good novel, but her novellas are rushed and leave you wanting…in my opinion. lol.

    7th Grave and No Body- I have to agree with you and Doug on the increase in Charlie’s ditziness. It was a tad overdone this time around. However, I still totally loved this book. Reyes remains the hottest hero ever, and I laughed my butt off several times. Things are starting to come together and the big picture is getting a little clearer. I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for the next release. I love a good mystery, so trying to match known characters with the titles of soldiers in the prophesy (“warrior”, “prophet” and the other 10 main people in Charlie’s upcoming army) was fun for me. I still haven’t figured them all out, but I’ve got some good ideas.

    Archangel’s Shadows- Loved the whole book, but Naasir completely stole the show for me. Again, I’m hooked on the mystery of him. He truly is like a tiger; lethal one minute and cuddly the next. I really did not expect the almost child-like innocence of him, but I have definitely fallen in love with Naasir. Aohdan is also very intriguing and his description sounds beautiful. He’s going to have a tragic story to tell. And then there’s Illium “Bluebell”. I so hope he doesn’t become evil when his power hits him in full force. I will totally cry if that happens. I am so in love with all the members of the “Seven”, and also quite interested in Elena building her own Guard. I think they will be an interesting mix as well. And, of course, I loved Janvier and Ashwini, too. They were a very fun couple, which was a nice change from all the seriousness of the series. All in all, I was very impressed with this book.

    Burn For Me- Yet another book that I highly anticipated, bought, and then never read. I was really excited about it, even though I never got into the Kate Daniels series (I tried so hard, through 5 books, to love it, but never got past a semi-like feeling). Anyway, after reviews that said there was little to no romance, I put it on the back burner. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t need a ton of romance, and a slow build over several books suits me just fine, but I do like at least a hint of a budding romance in a story. I saw several reviews who said it was straight up Urban Fantasy with no romance, so I lost interest. If anyone can say different, I’ll give it another chance.

    So, that’s the gist of the PR that I read this month. October was great and, for the most part, everything lived up to my very high expectations. The ones that I stayed up late, waiting to download them at midnight, were well worth losing sleep over. I kind of turned this comment into a blog post of my own, BUT you did ask. lol.

    • kaleigha says:

      On the Burn For Me front, I thought that there was a ton of chemistry between Nevada and Mad Rogan. Usually I like a lot of romance in a story, but I found that the build up and action totally hooked me. I have a feeling the next book Nevada will not even know what hit her.

      • Emily says:

        Oh, okay. So, it’s not that there wasn’t any romance, just that it’s going to be one of those slowly building over multiple books type thing? I don’t mind that. Chicagoland Vampires is one of my favorite series and it took them at least 3 or 4 books to get together. If Burn For Me has at least a hint of romance to come, then I might still like it. The only time I don’t expect romance is in YA, and heck, even Harry Potter fell in love. Hahaha!

  3. Janhavi says:

    Ooh, a month wrap up! This is actually a great feature, especially for months with a bunch of awesome releases 🙂 If it goes well maybe it can become a regular feature?The threads to discuss particularly popular books are always fun too.

    Anyway, so I loved Archangel’s Shadows (naturally) and Ash and Janvier have long been favourites of mine. I did kind of wish there were more romantic scenes between them, though. I could have given up a few of the mystery scenes in favour of more romance. however, I think its also because as I was reading I kept expecting more romance focused scenes and didnt get them? I might be quite satisfied if I re read it, especially if I re read Angel’s Pawn and the scenes about them in intervening books as well. And I loved loved the epilogue and especially the very last lines 🙂

    Darynda Jones’ book is waiting for me on my iPad, maybe this weekend.

    Burn for Me was fantastic. Its way better than Magic Bites, and I will be giving this to friends rather than Kate Daniels in order to introduce them to Ilona Andrews, and then KD later.

    • kaleigha says:

      I would like to actually make it a monthly feature, since I am nosy enough to want to know what everyone else thought about the biggies without having to go through a ton of reviews. As much as I love Kate Daniels, comparing the first books of each series I actually liked Burn for Me a lot more.

      • Janhavi says:

        Monthly feature sounds like a lot of fun. Yay! I don’t think burn for me is better than the latest couple of Kate Daniels, but compared to the first couple? Definitely. Way better.

  4. snapdragon says:

    I really enjoyed Archangels Shadows it really moved the story along for me. I actually liked the parts with Elena and the Legion. And the backstory of Naasir and Dmitri just made my heart hurt a little. To be honest I kinda really want Keir to have a wonderful someone pop up in his life. And for some reason I keep thinking that Venom and Sorrow will hook up. Plus I enjoyed how Janvier and Ash worked at being happy in the moment.

    Heir to the Throne – Sarah J. Maas
    I was excited to read it than I could not start…I just was not feeling it right now so I will re-read the first 2 books and try #3 later.

    Burn for Me – I have read it twice now and I caught a few things that I missed the first time around…I really want book two just to see how everything starts to come together.

    Dangerous Curves Ahead – Sugar Jamison
    I am really enjoying this series! If you are not a “set size” or have “curves and valleys” this would be a great series for you to check out. I have book 3 coming this week and am really excited to see what happens.

    I have others but those were the one off the top of my head.

    • kaleigha says:

      I loved the Dmitri and Naasir bits, too. I never thought about it, but I could totally see Keir getting his own story, if not a book then a novella. I go between thinking Venom and Sorrow and Illium and Sorrow, for some reason. I think because Illium has a fascination for mortals, so angels and vamps are out, but a full mortal doesn’t really give him his HEA. Plus, Sorrow trying to get over her terror of wings makes for a lot of drama.

      I started the Sarah J. Maas series with the novellas, but couldn’t quite get into them. But, the reviews have been so overwhelmingly positive that I am determined to give them another shot.

      I am hitting my third read of Burn For Me (for the character guide this time around), and I still haven’t gotten bored. That is the sign of a great book.

      • snapdragon says:

        I could not enjoy the novellas at all. I loved the first book without all the back story and really enjoyed going along for the ride in the first two novels. I think part of my problem was I got the combined novellas before the 3rd book and it turned me off. I only read 2 or 3 of the stories.

  5. PhoenixFyre says:

    The final book of the Fallen Angels series by JR Ward. I loved it but it had a happy/sad ending. It is hard to fall in love with characters knowing you will never seen them again. Three of the main characters will move to the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. Two angels and one demon, lol. But there were quite a few crossovers in the series like Trez, Butch, Phury and Lassiter was mentioned in it twice. That was a shock. But it was a great ending to the series and I will miss Jim Heron, the Savior…

    • alexandra says:

      I haven’t read a JR Ward book since like BDB #7 or #8. So reading this I’m like…wha??

      That’s a lot to keep up with especially since – confession time – I only read 3 books in October and two of them were historical romances.

  6. dougmeeks says:

    While I loved them all the only one that seem to be universally getting great reviews and talk in the forums is Burn for Me, the other two are getting mixed comments and reviews from people. I thought they were all 5 Star reading except maybe 7th Grave since it felt like a filler between the last book and the next one quite a bit even though I enjoyed it.

    • kaleigha says:

      I am so glad that Burn for Me is getting great reviews, because I am greedy and hoping it will expand beyond the trilogy now planned.

      • Janhavi says:

        Yes, me too! I saw you asked that in the goodreads ask the author feature- good question. Sound like it might go beyond 3 if sales are good , but they might move onto other characters in the world after 3. But I see today that both archangels shadows and burn for me hit the nYT and USA today best seller lists- so sounds like a great start for Hidden Legacy!

  7. peeeeaches says:

    Burn for me
    This was soooo good! I found myself not wanting it to end so I started to read it really slow which has never happened. The chemistry between Mad Rogan and Neveda is fun and hot!! So stoked for the next book!

    Archangles’s shadow
    Loved this installment of the series! It was fun to find out how Janvier and Ashwini’s relationship came about. I loved everything else going on in the book. I don’t care who’s story is next I know i will love it. I do hope to find out what “aeclari” means in the next book……I’m still curious of that one from archangles legion 🙂

    • kaleigha says:

      Yep, with you on Burn for Me. It might be easier if we knew when book two would be out…I am thinking before the next Kate book, hopefully next March-ish, I am hoping.

      I really don’t care who is up next for the Guild Hunter, either. I can honestly say I would be happy with any one of them at this point.

  8. Cassandra B. says:

    I was also worried about the romance level in Burn for Me and had mentally prepped for it to mostly be absent. Perhaps because I wasn’t excepting much, I thought it was actually a great romance. While the book does not follow a traditional formula, I don’t understand why people feel the romance is lacking. Perhaps calling it a PR rather than UF was misleading to people. I am very much looking forward to future books!

    I liked, but didn’t love Archangel’s Shadow. While I liked both Ash and Janiver, my favorite parts were the POVs from all the other characters. I also love the glimpses of Nassir. Very curious were the storyline is going.

    I am probably going to reread Burn for Me soon. Robin D. Owens’ newest Celta book is at the top of my TBR list and I am getting excited for Night Shift anthology later in November.

    • kaleigha says:

      I am anxiously waiting for Night Shift, too. I have enjoyed the excerpts for both Nalini and Ilona’s stories a few times already, and I think they are going to be great.

      • Charry says:

        I read it and loved it. She has a very interesting way of weaving storylines from different books together. After I finished, I found myself wanting to go back and reread some of the previous books.

  9. Monika says:

    I am totally on board with the idea of a monthly wrap-up as a regular feature, too, as I feel it might be a good way to find new series. My big five this month were the following:

    INTO DARKNESS by J. T. Geissinger
    This is the sixth installment of a great, and IMO underrated, PNR series. It has a very dark and dystopian feeling to it, with stories that are quite different from each other but a very intriguing overall story arch. If you are interested, Kaleigha posted my review a while back…

    DEMON STORM by Dianna Love
    After I read the first 4 installments of the Belador series all after each other I was eagerly looking forward to see what became of the budding love between Evalle and Storm. Sadly, I was kind of disappointed, somehow this book doesn’t live up to the rest of the series.

    BROKEN SOUL by Faith Hunter
    I really loved this installment of the Jane Yellowrock series, because Jane finally gets laid. I don’t mind if there is not all that much romance in an UF book, but Jane has been hung up on the wrong guy for several books now, flirting with some others, but never getting to the point and at the same time agonizing over her love life. I was a little disappointed in the irational behaviour of Leo, the master vampire of New Orleans, it just seems out of character somehow…

    ARCHANGELS SHADOW
    I liked it a lot, but feel that it is perhaps not the strongest installment in the series. I liked the glimpses of the Legion, I love Naasir and I have also thought about Venom and Sorrow maybe becoming a pair. At the moment I am also still very intrigued with Aodhan as we don’t know what happened to him to make any kind of touch unbearable…
    Though the romance between Janvier and Ashwini was very sweet, I felt that it lacked a bit of intensity. The most poignant moment for me was actually the suicide of Ashwini’s brother and sister…

    BURN FOR ME by Ilona Andrews
    I, too, was a bit apprehensive about Ilona Andrews doing a new series as I like Kate Daniels a lot, but I agree that it is even better than Kate Daniels. I loved everything about it (also – or especially – the first meeting between Nevada and Rogan) and cannot understand how people can say that it is lacking in romance, when those two have this great chemistry and make the sparks fly off each other. If I would critcize anything – and maybe it’s only my perception – then it is the final kiss scene, where Rogan is totally caught expending his power, because it reminded me just a bit too much of the kiss between Raphael and Elena…

    • kaleigha says:

      I am still determined to hit the Night Prowler series, ditto the Belador. Even though I haven’t read the Belador books, though, I was a bit bummed that Sherrilyn Kenyon wasn’t involved in it (which from what you said really was a draw-back). The more I hear about the Jane Yellowrock books, the more intrigued I become. I liked the way Nalini managed to juggle the different storylines in Archangel’s Shadows – there was a lot going on, but I found it all flowed really well. And Burn For Me? Definitely one of my best reads this year, for sure.

  10. Charry says:

    So I am a fan of Archangels Shadow. I wasn’t sure I was going to like it because the previous book in the series was not my favorite though I’ve loved most of the others. I think generally I’m more of a fan when the author sticks to one character or at least one couple. Somehow in this one I found I didn’t mind it so much when she jumped around. In fact I found myself more interested in some of the supporting cast. I didn’t Love this book, but I liked it a lot.

    Burn for Me was unexpected. Some of it I loved so much I couldn’t believe it. Other parts I wasn’t so sure. I was sold on the main lady from the start. She was AMAZING. Then they kept introducing all these interesting males and I would get excited only to find out, ‘no…that one is a complete loon’, ‘no…he really is awful’, ‘no..he tortures people…oh what, wait….what? He’s the one??’ Needless to say it was a bit of a roller coaster. But maybe that’s a good thing. I’m really looking forward to the next one. Ultimately I’m still an Ilona Andrews stalker and proud of it.

    7th grave was good but weird in that it felt like she was wrapping things up in a major way. It felt like she was cutting ties with some characters and ending certain storylines. Is she changing publishers or something? She did raise some new questions so maybe she just wants to start a new main storyline.

    • kaleigha says:

      I didn’t mind the multiple storylines, either – I thought it was really well balanced. And Naasir? Total scene-stealer. When I first heard about Burn for Me, I was convinced that Adam Pierce was the leading man. Then, after I heard about Mad Rogan, I had a total “oh, crap…love triangle” reaction. I was so, so happy to find out that wasn’t the case. But for a good part of the book, I was still thinking that it might happen. I feel the same about Seventh Grave – it had a really different vibe to it. Hopefully it is just a new story arc revving up – and I need to find out more about Osh, stat.

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