Review

Reading Wrap Up

booksI am going to try and make this post a little less rambly than usual, so let’s see how that goes. Since October has streaked by, I thought it would be a good time to do another Reading Wrap Up post to see what everyone has been up to.

My battle with Sherrilyn Kenyon‘s Dark-Hunters continues, with mixed success. I seem to be in the like one then not so much stage of things, with the last one being a solid meh. My problem with Dark Side of the Moon can be placed squarely on female lead Susan, and pretty much only her. I don’t like female reporter characters, which is weird, but that isn’t what bugged me about her. I didn’t like her over the top snark and sarcasm. I like both snark and sarcasm, but hers came off as inappropriate and mostly just rude. She did get a bit better as the story went on, but not enough to make me like her.

My other big stumbling block when I read is the pregnant-by-another-dude female, which I thought would mean I wouldn’t like Deborah Blake‘s Dangerously Charming. Turns out that in this case it didn’t bother me at all. I quite enjoyed this one, and look forward to Dangerously Divine….whose cover I found just this minute. Behold.

dangerously-divine

Aaaand, my enjoyment of J.D. Robb‘s In Death series is also still going strong. Loyalty in Death saw some great and long awaited developments for certain side characters, and paired with a good, solid story and lots of Roarke, I was a happy girl. I had weirdness with my last book order, which means I have to wait a bit for my next fix to be delivered. On to #10…and only like 35 more to go. Yeah.

Oh, and I broke down and finally tried A Promise of Fire from Amanda Bouchet. I was still on my no-new-series ban, but I caved and ordered this one for my ipad, and I was glad I did. It was a very nice break from my usual, and it has been a long while since I picked up one that had a historical feel. I will be definitely keeping up with this series, and I do so hope for stories for Carver, Flynn and Kato after the original trilogy wraps up.

Finally, there were a few re-reads, too. I tore through Ilona Andrews‘ latest Kate Daniels, Magic Binds, when it was first released, and I was shocked by how little I retained. Seriously, I might’ve remembered maybe 10% of the storyline, so the re-read felt almost like a first time, and it was great. The only downside is that you can feel the build-up to the end, which is not something I want to contemplate. Ever. And I also re-read What a Dragon Should Know from G.A. Aiken, and it was a blast. You can’t miss with one of these books if you are looking for crazy antics and humor, and going back to it was a treat. Now if I could just find out when the next new book is coming out, I would be happy.

So, I aimed for less long-winded, and missed by a mile. But what have you been reading lately? Have you kept up on the very recently finished serialized One Fell Sweep? Were you happy how it wrapped up? Do you also pick up the print or e-format versions when they are released, or do you stick to reading them on the Ilona Andrews’ Blog?

Review

Archangel’s Heart Review

Any time Nalini Singh has a new book in sight I am happy, and Archangel’s Heart is no exception. This is the 9th book of the Guild Hunter series, and it is still going strong. Doug Meeks sent over his early review for this one, which is due out on November 1st.

archangel's heartWhat Doug said…

I read a lot of fantasy/paranormal romance, much of what is classified as urban fantasy really is romance in many cases but I can count on my fingers(with a couple left over) the number of writers that can really pull off a true emotional, gut-felt and truly believable “I can’t live without you” romance. Nalini Singh is one of those very few and this book pulls you right into that “love to last the ages” feeling while trying to figure out a sinister plot that has you guessing a good bit.

We start with a summons to a meeting by a mysterious and ancient order of angels known as the Luminata who call the entire Cadre together to discuss the fate of Lijuan’s territory since it appears she is no longer in charge of her lands (her actual status is saved until the last page).

It soon becomes apparent that this is a dual plot since the above plot gets shunted aside until later in the book because of some very sinister things going on at the fortress of the Luminata.

This is a great set of plots and the romance is worked into the story beautifully as well as finally some answers to a few questions that have been hanging around this series for a long time plus it looks like we may add a few secondary characters to the series.

This book does reveal something that has not been shown a lot in this series, which is that none of the Cadre are really 1 dimensional characters, we get a bit of time with all of them in this book.

Bottom Line: 5 Stars, maybe I am just addicted to the writing of Nalini Singh because there is really nothing to even mention that was negative, The story was riveting, the emotion was heartfelt, the only thing I can ever complain about is this book could have been 200 pages longer and I still would have wanted more, there is so much fertile ground for future stories. 5 Stars for one of the paranormal genre’s premier writers once again giving us an exceptional story that you will remember long after the last page.

I was very lucky, I must admit. Not only was I sent an ARC for this one a while back, I was also sent an early copy of the actual paperback release, too. It was a great surprise, and I will be diving back in again for my re-read pretty soon.

Review

My DNF Weekend

yes-noUsually, I don’t DNF anything. I will chug along, no matter what, even if I have to take way longer to get through something than I would like. But this weekend, I had not one but two things I tanked on.

First off, I just couldn’t get into Midnight Crossroad from Charlaine Harris. At all. I figured I would give it a shot since I found out there was going to be a tv show based off of it, but it just didn’t work out for me. I can’t say it was bad, strangely enough, but it was just…nothing. I made the half-way mark, and absolutely nothing had happened. It was page after page of the details of everyone’s life – what they were wearing, where they were going, what they were eating and who they were talking to – but nothing happened. No plot, no action, no character development, no intrigue, no romantic development – just…nothing. It was like reading 100 pages of someone’s grocery list. But, there is still a plus side – I was anxious to try this one, so I ended up buying the Kindle version. Yes, I still wasted the money, but I don’t have the print-book urge to make myself keep reading because I have the book in my hand. It was just a matter of hitting delete and done. It is my plan to try all new series in ebook now before I commit to picking up the print copy. Less disappointment that way.

And strangely enough, I also DNF’d a tv show. I have heard so, so many people rave about Mr. Robot that I thought I would give it a try. It is offered through Shomi, a Canadian streaming service, and since Shomi is shutting down next month I figured this was the best time to dive in. But once again, it was a bit of a dud for me. I tried the first half of season 1, and again it just didn’t grab me. Not horrible, just not enough to keep my attention. Maybe it gets better as it goes on, or maybe things get more exciting, but it looks like I will be skipping this one.

What have you DNF’s recently, either on page or screen? Anything that everyone else seems to love that just doesn’t work for you?

Review

Dangerously Charming Review

One of the more anticipated books for this coming month is Dangerously Charming from Deborah Blake, the first book of the Baba Yaga spin-off series. Thanks goes again to Doug Meeks for sending over his early review for this one, which has a release date of October 4th.

dangerously charmingWhat Doug said…

I have enjoyed all the Baba Yaga books and this new spinoff series was something I had been looking forward to with a lot of anticipation and hope that it could be as good as I hoped it would be.

Part of a possible problem with this book is that I am unable to discern how much a new reader would enjoy it as those of us who have read the other books and know the history that resulted in the present day situations the Riders find themselves in since it seemed that a lot of history was provided to keep any novices from being totally lost but without that detailed history from the Baba Yaga books I cannot say with any certainty that it is enough.

This story starts with action soon after the first pages and the pace seems to pick up slowly all through the book which made it a great reading experience.

Mikhail made for a terrible hero and love interest for much of the book due to his overwhelming soul crushing guilt from the events of the last Baba Yaga book, to be honest his constant angst was really getting on my nerves before it finally lightened up a bit.

Jenna is a great heroine being just tough enough and just tender enough for her part of this story, her overwhelming desire to get rid of her family curse is what keeps this story moving along in most instances.

As a couple Mikhail and Jenna are not an easy match and his guilt makes him tend to shove anyone away so this is going to be a hard romance which is just one of several subplots in this novel.

Bottom Line:  This was an exceptional novel, the story was good, the characters were engaging, the reappearance of several of the characters from previous books was wonderful and I enjoyed the book almost 100% but since I did get tired of the angst and Mikhail’s constant self-flagellation I am giving it 4 Stars for the book even though I think the story itself was closer to 5.  Highly recommended and I have to say that I would also highly recommend reading the 3 Baba Yaga  novels and the novella that ties up a couple of loose ends Wickedly Ever After before this new series to get the maximum enjoyment from this series and these characters.

The 3 novels that are highly recommended to be read before this series can be found at this link:

www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0141KA9AK

Who else will be picking this one up? If you read the Baba Yaga books, which one of the Riders was your favorite?

Review

Magic Binds Review

With less than a day until its official release (although I got my copy in the mail today), Monika sent over her review for Magic Binds by Ilona Andrews, the ninth book in the Kate Daniels series. Doug already sent over a review a couple of weeks back (which can be found HERE), now let’s check out another POV.

magic bindsWhat Monika said…

Fate and Father issues: Turning inward.

To readers familiar with the series it does not come as a surprise that Kate Daniels is having father issues; after all the overarching story arc has been all about finding ways and the means to defeat Roland, who in the past has seemed far too powerful to go up against. Now dear old dad has relocated to outside of Atlanta and is building a residence there, right outside the territory that Kate has claimed (quite unwillingly) as her own in order to protect it from his grasp. For a short time Kate and her dad had an uneasy ceasefire going, that is, until Roland has Saiman abducted. Although Saiman is no particular friend of hers, Kate cannot have people taken from her sphere of influence if she wants to appear credible as a leader.

Her father troubles are all the more inconvenient as Kate is trying to plan her wedding with Curran. In fact, that is were the book starts: Kate and Curran are trying to gain entrance into Roman’s magically protected home to ask him to officiate at their wedding. Roman is delighted as normally – because of his position as a priest of the Dark God Chernobog – he never gets asked to officiate at happy occasions. When it turns out that Kate is busy with other stuff he takes over as the wedding planner, with hilarious results.

And if that weren’t enough the Oracle has a vision of Kate’s future if she does indeed go through with her marriage to Curran and it is bleak, though not marrying him could be even worse. Thus faced with two impossible choices Kate tries everything to change her destiny and the outcome the Oracle predicted. The question whether one’s fate is ordained or whether one can shape one’s own destiny is at the core of many belief systems. Kate seems to be more on the side of taking fate into her own hands, even if the consequences turn out to be unpredictable.

Having broken off from the pack Kate and Curran also have to establish their new roles and redefine the parameters of their relationship, thinking about the lines in the sand that cannot be crossed. Kate is also trying to strengthen the bonds with her allies and to gain new ones in order to have a chance at defeating her father.

But between all the the myriad responsibilities, her relationships with Curran, family and an ever growing circle of friends and planning the wedding, the most important struggle that Kate has to fight is an internal one. As her quest to cheat fate progresses she comes to realize that the greatest danger does not lie in being defeated by her father, but in becoming like her father: a powerful godlike being that cares nothing for the lifes and emotions of others and rationalizes his actions, even the most heinous ones, as serving the greater good…

Verdict: a great UF read, fast-paced, full of action and urgency, at times hilariously funny and displaying quite some philosophical depth.  I cannot wait to see where Ilona Andrews will take this series next!

I managed to get most of my crap done today so I can dive into Magic Binds tonight and read right through. Can’t wait.

Review

Reading Wrap Up

booksFor those who haven’t heard me whining before, Sherrilyn Kenyon books officially make up more than half of my total To Be Read collection. Seriously. Over half. I had 50 books from her various series – and three of them read. But I kept waiting for “the right time” to dive in. I always thought that the day I started on her books would be an event. You know, January 1st. My birthday. Something memorable to mark the day I started my very own TBR monster. Turns out one day I just grabbed one and dove in. Finally.

So, I made it through the Chronicles of Nick series, which wasn’t bad. I did find Instinct was a bit on the confusing side, but still manageable. Now I am five books into the Dark-Hunter series and still chugging along. I have been marathoning them for the last couple of weeks, and enjoying them so far. I did find myself getting a bit worn out from the overly tortured heroes, but then I hit Kiss of the Night which wasn’t nearly as tortured. So far, so good. The only thing that is weird to me is that Nick from Chronicles of Nick doesn’t really match up with Dark-Hunter Nick. I keep waiting for Caleb or Kody to show up, but then I remember that CoN has almost an alternate timeline going on.

I find myself flying through them, but I do seem to need to do some “homework”. I found some of the groups and terms weren’t explained well enough to get them into my head. I had to do a Wiki search to figure out who was who, and I still remain hazy on a bit of it. For example, I couldn’t keep straight some of the lesser-mentioned groups…Strati, Spathi, Talpinas, Tessera…that sort of thing. Maybe I need to not be so OCD, but I like to have all of the details straight. Hopefully I will get all of the groups straight as I read on.

My goal is to have all of the Dark-Hunter world books done by the end of the year, and I think it is doable. I have given the monster Acheron and Styxx books the evil eye since you know those suckers are going to not only take forever to get through, but are going to be heavy on top of it. I just know the break from the tortured hero isn’t going to last, but when it gets to be too much I will just take a break.

That is what I have been reading…and what I will be reading…for a while. What have you been up to? Have you pulled any long-standing titles off of your TBR lately?

Review

Magic Binds Review

Yes, we are on the final countdown for Magic Binds, the next installment of the Kate Daniels series from Ilona Andrews, which is due out on the 20th. Doug Meeks sent over his early review, and it sounds like it doesn’t disappoint. Not that any of us thought it ever would.

magic bindsWhat Doug said…

My head is still trying to grasp all the things that happened in this book and more importantly the question of “What happens next??” As for the question, I don’t know and trying to guess what the authors will come up with would be the textbook definition of “exercise in futility”.

OK, to get things started and to raise the stress level of the reader, we get an oracle who sees all kinds of horrible things in Kate’s future and almost no way to avoid them which sets this book off on a series of small adventures leading up to a middle sized adventure which leads to an epic battle, so what could we add?

Did you forget the wedding? Yes, the wedding which they choose the most unlikely priest who has never been asked to do a wedding and becomes a “wedding planner” and he and others pursue Kate all through the book to add some serious humor to a very stressful story. It is things like this that make this book rise above almost every other series in this genre, they can make you laugh at the best and worst times.

Let’s not forget about Roland, the loving Father and homicidal megalomaniac that has been the monster since book 1 pretty much but has become a mixed bag over the last few books. Is he the horrible monster or just a misunderstood psychopath? Well, you get a lot more information in this book and just when you think you know all the answers The Andrews Mafia give it a twist to make you run for your Advil. We do get a LOT more history of Roland in this book than we have in this whole series up until now.

One of the things in every almost every novel in this genre I have ever read is any character with enormous powers has to fight their own inner demons to avoid becoming a monster and this happens with Kate a lot in this book but it is SO subtle at the time that you don’t realize she has crossed a line until it is pointed out to you and THAT folks is just plain old good writing.

Another thing I have noticed in recent books is that a few characters I really liked have become somewhat unlikable but still remain uneasy friends. They take this small tidbit of a plot twist and blow it into the stratosphere in this one, you will not believe who Kate is bringing home for a visit.

You been wondering about Christopher you say? Answers will be forthcoming and it is just one of MANY surprises in this book.

I keep wondering about Julie and what the future plans for her are, she is still a bit of an unknown power and she is still spending time with Roland. When I think of this series ending it is more than a bit depressing but I can see this carrying on with Julie as the lead character in the future.

Let us get back to the wedding planning, it is pure chaos and in addition to all the “girly” stuff that Kate must suffer through Roland wants to attend and make it into a feast for the ages. Ya gotta love family LOL. If all the monsters and evil villains can’t kill Kate, this wedding might do it.

I think I will end this horribly long review with a question …. where is Hugh, we don’t see him at all in this book and I don’t believe for a minute that he is really gone. Is that April Fool joke about him getting his own book going to become a reality?

Bottom Line: WTF can I say that has not already been said, I get tired of saying how this one is better than the last. I have already run out of superlatives and to repeat how awesome/exceptional/amazing/[ fill in the blank ] this series is just makes me look inept. Let’s just call it in a class with maybe 3-4 other series at most and give it 5 Stars only because they don’t allow more.

My Favorite Line (and you have to read it in context to enjoy it): “My impersonation of a peacock is proceeding as planned.”

Since it would be stupid to ask if you are looking forward to this one, I will ask instead what you would like to see after this series wraps up. The mysterious Hugh book? More Derek stories? How about a Roman-centric series?

Review

On the Brighter Side of Things

Glossy Green Heart-256x256I have found that for the last couple of weeks, I have been coming off as negative in most of my posts. Between mocking some recent cover art (ok, they were totally ugly and deserved the pointing and laughing), and the whining about series I am dropping and recent disappointments in what I have read, I have decided to do a post about something I really liked.

That something is the new one from Faith Hunter, Blood of the Earth. It is the first book in the Jane Yellowrock spin-off series called Soulwood, and for me it did about everything right. I like the characters and the world-building in the Jane Yellowrock books, but the multiple potential romantic interests took me out of the story. I don’t mind if there is no romantic lead for a few books, but when there are a few different ones all the time then I can’t really get invested in the story. Weird, but true. I didn’t have that problem at all in Blood of the Earth. There is one potential love interest, period, and even that is only at the hinting-at stage in this first book. But because I wasn’t trying to play a guessing game figuring out who it might be, I was able to sit back and enjoy the story.

The world-building is great, and Nell was a fascinating character. Her situation is so unique that I don’t remember any other characters in any other series with her particular type of backstory or voice before. Add into that her very interesting and complex set of abilities, and you have a stand-out character. But there are others, too, who stood out – like Paca and Occam, Tandy and even Mud. I know there is a lot of Rick hate from the Jane Yellowrock books, but I didn’t get far enough into the series to see what for. At this point, I actually feel bad for him and the situation he seems to be stuck in, but that might change when I find out what he did that turned off so many readers.

And I will be finding out, because my enjoyment of Blood of the Earth did exactly what I was hoping it would do – it jump started my interest in Jane Yellowrock. See, now I have to go back and re-read the couple of books that I have already read, then power through the rest of the series, just so I can feel that I didn’t miss any backstory that will impact what is going on here. As a bonus, you all have mentioned that the romantic-whiplash thing does eventually get resolved, so I am in.

Did you check this one out? What did you think? Doug sent over his early review a while back, so hopefully you have had time to check it out by now. How does it compare to Jane for you? For those who loathed Rick heading into this one, was he redeemed at all?

Review

Reading Wrap Up

booksIt has been a couple of weeks since my last Reading Wrap Up post, and I am interested to see what everyone has been checking out lately. I had some hits, some so-so’s, and one I can’t quite put my finger on.

Let’s start with a big winner for me, and that is Betrayals from Kelley Armstrong, the fourth book of her Cainsville series. As much as I was looking forward to this one, and it was one of my biggies for the entire year, I didn’t quite know what direction things were going to go in, especially on the Ricky/Olivia/Gabriel front. I figured there might be a bit of progression on the romance front (trying to keep things general, which I am not good at), but I was surprised by just how much there was. Especially on the Gabriel front. Gabriel has been so…oblivious? Stunted? Scared?…that I couldn’t see how Kelley could realistically start to bring him around, but she pulled it off. I like Olivia a lot, and Ricky too, but Gabriel stole the show. Seeing his POV was a real treat, but then so was finding out what was going on behind the scenes for Ricky, as well.

I have never made any secret of my general loathing of love triangles, but I can honestly say that this is one of only two series (the other being The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare) that has one that works for me. I think it comes from the fact that I like all three of the characters, and most importantly all three of the characters like and respect each other. There is only one book left to wrap everything up, and while part of me can’t wait to find out how things end, it is going to be hard to let this series go. Now just a year to wait for Rituals…let the countdown begin.

Also on the winning side of things, I flew through another Eve and Roarke book from J.D. Robb, this time Holiday in Death (book 7). Still enjoying these a lot – I am reading them quickly enough to keep details fresh, but not so quickly that I am burning myself out on them. I have had a string of other things that I had to read, and I find myself looking forward to picking up the next one – and it is great if you are still excited seven stories in.

This next one is a bit hard to put into words. I had to force myself to read the last Carpathian book from Christine Feehan, Dark Promises, for a couple of reasons. The most important one was that I cannot stand the female lead, Gabrielle. She bugged me from the start, so picking up a whole book devoted to her didn’t light my fire. I did end up making myself read (or skim) it, but it didn’t add anything to the overall series, and in fact it was bland enough for me that I have completely forgotten most of it in just a couple of weeks. The same cannot be said for the most recent release, Dark Carousel, which while not a perfect book does set up a whole new world for the Carpathians first brought to light in the Dark Crime novella. We move out of the jungles and mountains (and those damn caves) and this new branch is set in cities in the US, and it was a welcome change.

For me, though, this one was less the story of Tariq and Charlie and more a set-up for future books. There was a lot of things going on with a lot of different characters, and the two main leads got lost a bit in the shuffle, but Tariq was less ass-holey than a lot of her recent male leads, and Charlie actually managed to stand up for herself while acknowledging that this was Tariq’s world and he knew best in certain situations. She wasn’t completely stupid and borderline abused, which was a bonus. It made sense. But the bad guys were a bit over the top for me, and there is a lot of eye-rolling magic stuff that had me laughing. I mean, I started humming “Puff the Magic Dragon” when the triplets starting building the come-to-life stone dragons to fly around on. In terms of the Feehan Female Formula, though, Charlie does still speak with the same voice as most recent heroines what with her “honey” this and “honey” that. And she did get a smokin’ hot pair of ruffled boots, too, so all was well with the world. I like the new feel for the series, and I guess I can say I liked it for what it was, but hopefully now that the set up is done the stories will flow a bit better.

On the not-so-successful side of things was Kresley Cole‘s two recent Arcana Chronicles releases, Day Zero and Arcana Rising. I started out with Day Zero but quickly dropped it – it is great for adding info as a reference, but it didn’t grab my attention as a story. I did finish Arcana Rising, but not sure how I felt about it. Maybe my annoyance with the whole e-book only format changes and lack of info played a part, but this one was weird. For me, the tone was completely different than previous books, and I felt like I had missed a chunk of story that would bridge between the previous book and this one. It felt really short and rushed, and like important things had been skipped like in a badly edited movie. I guess I am trying to say that for me it felt like everything was just thrown in, so when there was a big reveal or twist, it just fell flat. There were parts I liked, but for me it didn’t really fit with the rest of the series. I didn’t hate it, but I wasn’t thrilled, either. Let’s just say I thought it felt self-pubbed, and not in a good way.

Ok, your turn. What have you been reading lately? Have you checked out any of the ones I did, and if you did what did you think?

Review

Reading Wrap Up

booksIt has only been a few weeks since I did my last reading wrap up post, but it seems like so much longer. That is probably because I managed to go through a decent number of books for a change, and I also managed to tackle some of my TBR pile, too. A win/win.

First things first, and this is a big one for me…

I did it. I finally, finally tackled some of my huuuge Sherrilyn Kenyon TBR pile. Her books make up just shy of HALF of my total books to be read – yes, almost half – and the pile staring at me had gotten so out of control that I figured if I didn’t jump in now I never would. Not quite sure where to start, I tackled the first five Chronicles of Nick books, and I ended up quite liking them. I figure it will give me a bit of a backdrop for when I do get to the Dark-Hunter books, too. The Nick books I read were fun, and I flew through them really quickly. I can’t say I will be caught up with all of Kenyon’s books anytime soon, but at least I have gotten a decent start.

Hm, what else…oh, yeah. I finally got to the latest from Darynda Jones, The Curse of Tenth Grave. I didn’t dislike this one, but it was…lacking, somehow. Maybe it was because of the distance between Charley and Reyes (both physical ad emotional) for the vast majority of the book, especially since it was based on what felt like soap-opera level drama. I think for me, just Charley isn’t quite enough to carry the book – she needs the gang around, and they weren’t around much. Things did pick up in the last quarter, so all is good again. But like I said, when Reyes, Garrett, Osh and the rest aren’t around, it doesn’t quite work as well for me. Still funny and all, but not quite as engaging.

Well, I also broke down and decided to borrow a book. Weird, for me, but there you have it. For quite a while, I have debated on picking up Dark Promises from Christine Feehan. There were a couple of issues I had – the biggest being that I loathed the character of Gabrielle since she was first introduced way back when. She just rubbed me wrong even in the little bit she had been seen in previous books, but I wasn’t stoked to read a whole book about her. I probably would’ve bitten the bullet and just picked the darn thing up anyways, but then I read the first chapter excerpt on Christine’s website, and I really couldn’t stand the way Gabrielle came off. Whiny, needy, demanding, and completely oblivious to pretty much everything going on around her, that one chapter completely turned me off her. Plus, I was strangely weirded out by the thought Grandma Trixie. Not sure why, but it just sounded odd. Add to that the less than stellar reviews I had heard, and negative reactions to the “hero”. So, not excited for the book. At all. But I do still have higher hopes for the next one.

However, I was thinking that if I didn’t give this one a try, I might miss some story set up for future books. You know, the introduction of new characters, possible leads on new lifemates, that sort of thing. But nope. I could’ve completely skipped this one and not missed a thing. I thought Gabrielle was a waste of page time, and to be honest I can’t even remember the name of her lifemate. Nope, no clue what his name was. Trixie wasn’t that bad – I ended up preferring her and Fane to Gabrielle and…unknown ancient dude…but I did roll my eyes a few times at nearly virginal, still incredibly hot and awesomely built, self sacrificing great grandma Trixie, but at least it was good for a laugh. And at least she was different. Gabrielle followed my “Feehan Female Formula” down to letter…but at least it was someone else who mentioned the “awesome boots” this time. Joy.

And I finished up Nalini Singh‘s Archangel’s Heart just last night. It has a different tone to it than previous books, but I liked it. It wasn’t my favorite by a long shot, but it is always great to get back into a favorite world. There is a lot of Aodhan, too, and he is making great strides towards taking back his life. I am still getting a Sparkle/Bluebell vibe, but I can’t be completely sure if it is just me.

So, what have you been reading lately? Have you managed to tackle any long-standing TBR monsters, or have you been hitting all new releases?