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?

Release Info

From the Author Pages

Ugh, I seem to be so far behind on pretty much every aspect of my online life. I was keeping up pretty well with everything, but in the last few weeks things have really gotten away from me. Anyways, enough whining. I did manage to get a full edit on the Psy/Changeling Character Guide done, which was a big one, and I will be working on catching up on a couple of others in the next few weeks.

Now, let’s see what’s new from the author pages…

  • Alexandra Ivy has a spin-off her Bayou Heat series written with Laura Wright starting up soon. The first book of The Pantera Security League 6 will be called One Down, and it will be out on August 29th. The cover was revealed on Facebook:

one down

  • I can’t remember if I posted this before or not, so here goes. I dug around a bit and found the official blurb for the final Chicagoland Vampires book from Chloe Neill, Blade Bound. This series wraps up next April 25th…
quotation marksSince Merit was turned into a vampire at the tender age of twenty-seven, she’s become the protector of House Cadogan and saved the city of Chicago over and over again. Through it all, she’s had her lover, and friend, Master Vampire Ethan Sullivan, by her side.
But then Ethan is violently attacked, seemingly by someone in the throes of a dark magic. And as that magic spreads across the city, Merit finds herself in a fight to the death for everything she loves.
  • But before that, there will be a Chicagoland Vampires novella released on January 19th called Phantom Kiss
quotation marksVampires generally aren’t afraid of things that go bump in the night, but Merit and Ethan are extra jumpy after a recent attack by a dark sorcerer. So when they learn that someone is messing with graves in Chicago’s cemeteries, stealing skulls and snatching souls, they fear their powerful foe might be back for even more magical vengeance.
But after a specter begins haunting Cadogan House-and targeting vampires- they realize they’re being taunted by an altogether different sort of monster. A ghoulish villain straight out of the Windy City’s urban legends is on the prowl- and he won’t stop until he’s killed again…
  • The cover is out for the re-release of Christine Feehan‘s novella, Dark Crime, which will be out on November 15th in e-format. I didn’t mind this one – it was a set up for the latest book, Dark Carousel, and it started some of the Carpathians off in a new location, which was a welcome change.

dark crime

Speaking of Christine Feehan, it looks like her next couple of releases have been made official. The next Ghostwalkers book will be called Power Game, and Amazon is listing it as a January 27th release – in hardcover. Yep. Hardcover. I thought that might be a mistake, but I checked around and it looks like the Ghostwalkers will be making the switch. The blurb is a little bland, but better than nothing…

quotation marksA mysterious woman with her own agenda rescues a captured GhostWalker soldier held by a secret enemy. Together they uncover a conspiracy that extends beyond the reaches of the US government and proves a deadly threat to national security…
  • Oh, and the final book in the Sisters of the Heart series, Bound Together, will be out on March 21st. And a bit more blurby goodness for you…
quotation marksThe Sea Haven series comes to a climactic end as the mysterious man from Blythe Daniels’ past re-enters her life in a dramatic way. Viktor Prakenskii had always intended to come for Blythe after his work undercover was at an end, but with a dangerous enemy heading towards Sea Haven, he knows he cannot wait any longer or he will jeopardize the woman he loves. His arrival sets off an explosive chain of events, and everyone in the small community of Sea Haven, including the Drake family, will never be the same.

The books set in Sea Haven have become my favorite of all of Christine’s series – way more consistent writing than the other series have had lately, and way less of a power imbalance between the main couple. That might change heading into the Motorcycle club spin-off, but for now this is my most anticipated of her books.

  • Hope you are not tired of the blurbs yet, because this next one comes from Faith Hunter‘s next Jane Yellowrock book, Cold Reign. I am reading (and loving) Blood of the Earth, and it is making me want to go back and dive into Jane Yellowrock again. Hopefully I can get caught up before this next one comes out on May 2nd…
quotation marksJane Yellowrock is a shape-shifting skinwalker…and the woman rogue vampires fear most. Jane walks softly and carries a big stake to keep the peace in New Orleans, all part of her job as official enforcer to Leo Pellisier, Master of the City. But Leo’s reign is being threatened by a visit from a delegation of ancient European vampires seeking to expand their dominions.
But there’s another danger to the city. When she hears reports of revenant vampires, loose in NOLA and out for blood, Jane goes to put them down—and discovers there’s something unusual about these revenants. They never should have risen.
Jane must test her strength against a deadly, unnatural magic beyond human understanding, and a ruthless of cadre of near-immortals whose thirst for power knows no bounds…
  • Gena Showalter and Jeaniene Frost will be pairing up for a duology featuring two of their previously released works called Forbidden Craving, which will be released on March 28th. Gena’s story is The Nymph King, and Jeaniene’s is The Beautiful Ashes, and here is a peek at the cover…

forbidden craving

  • Aaand I finally tracked down the blurb for the next Black Dagger Brotherhood book from J.R. Ward, The Chosen. The (ugly) cover reveal was earlier in the week, and I don’t think we will be forgetting that puppy anytime soon…
quotation marksThe Black Dagger Brotherhood has won a major victory over the Lessening Society, but the threat to their way of life is ever-present and life for the brotherhood is as chaotic as ever. Xcor, a tortured soul and a member of the brotherhood’s rival group, is in custody waiting to be beaten and interrogated. They believe he is a major threat, but Layla knows the truth.
Although she has just given birth to two infants, thoughts of Xcor consume her. He has fallen in love with Layla, but they both know it is impossible to be together unless the brotherhood gives Xcor a chance to prove himself. Their connection could end Xcor’s lifetime of agonizing loneliness or tear apart everything Layla holds dear.
  • Immortal Unchained is a new one coming from Lynsay Sands, and it will be released on March 28th. To mix things up, here is both the cover and blurb at the same time…

immortal unchained

quotation marksEver since Domitian Argenis recognized Sarita as his life mate, he’s been waiting for the perfect moment to claim her. Those fantasies did not include him being chained to a table in a secret lab or both of them being held hostage by a mad scientist. Somehow, they have to escape…
Sarita has seen some crazy things as a cop, but nothing to rival Domitian. A vampire? Seriously? But his healing ability, incredible powers, and their mind-blowing physical connection—none of it should be possible, yet her body knows differently. Now, not only do they have to save each other, but other innocent lives are at stake. Failure is not an option, for Sarita intends that Domitian show her exactly what an eternity of pleasure feels like…
  • This one is called Midnight Jewel, and it is the second book in The Glittering Court series from Richelle Mead. This one has a release date of April 25th…

midnight jewel

quotation marksA refugee of war, Mira was cast out of her home country and thrust into another, where the conditions were inhospitable at best. In a life-altering twist of fate, she is given the chance to escape once more, and she takes it, joining the Glittering Court.
Both a school and a business venture, the Glittering Court is designed to transform impoverished girls into upper-class ladies who appear destined for powerful and wealthy marriages in the New World. There, Mira finds herself subjected to persecution, not only from her fellow Glittering Court jewels, but from her suitors, as well—men she would potentially be expected to give her life to.
By day, she goes through the motions, learning the etiquette and customs that will help to earn her anonymity, even making a couple true friends in the process, the forthright ladies’ maid Adelaide and the ambitious laundress Tamsin. But by night, Mira hatches a different plan entirely—one that, if exposed, could get her hanged in the highest court of Adoria.

Welp, that was longer than planned, so I hope I didn’t bore anyone too much. Are there any of these that caught your eye? What are you most looking forward to?

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?

Book of the Month

August’s Book of the Month

I swear that it feels like it was just last week that I was doing up the July book of the Month list and whining that there wasn’t really anything that was must-have for me. Well, I can’t say the same thing about August – at all. For me, August usually shapes up to be second only to March in terms of anticipated new releases, and there are some good ones to choose from. As always, I have listed 10 upcoming titles for you to choose from, but if you have something else in mind just select “Other” and leave your pick in the comments section. A complete list of August’s new releases can be found HERE

Brace yourselves, because this is about the only time in history that Nalini Singh is releasing a book and I am not making it my pick of the month. Seriously. My runaway pick is absolutely Betrayals from Kelley Armstrong, the second from last book of the Cainsville series (Noooo, only one left after this). I have a strangely intense love for this series, and if you asked me I can’t even really tell you why. I guess sometimes a storyline just clicks for you, and this one did for me. I am excited for Wild Embrace, too, of course, and I have very high hopes for Blood of the Earth. I haven’t bonded with Jane Yellowrock that much, something about her multiple potential love interests has thrown me off a bit, but I am excited for Nell’s story. Amanda Bouchet‘s first book, A Promise of Fire, intrigued me since I first saw it listed months ago, and I find myself even looking forward to Christine Feehan‘s next Carpathian book, Dark Carousel, mostly because it is city-based rather than the usual jungle-or-mountain thing that has been going on. Yep, going to be a big, big month.

Uncategorized

The Feehan Female Formula

faa581382D66a62D49f72D9be82D9b895cf85a3epapersToday was a nice day. I had a conversation with a person who came into where I work about books. That is always a treat, at least for me, because not a lot (meaning virtually no one) in my real life reads what I/we do, so to exchange actual spoken words with another human about a favorite topic is really rare. As we were mentioning upcoming releases and past favorites, the subject of Christine Feehan came up. And that talk got me thinking, which will probably get me in trouble again, but then again it won’t be the first time. Here goes…

I have to qualify this, once again, and say that I pick up all of her books, and Christine Feehan will probably always have a place in my collection. This isn’t me slamming her or her work. She is the author that got me interested in PNR and UF, and it was her books that brought me back to reading again after a years-long stop. I snicker and roll my eyes sometimes, but I am pretty much always counting down a new release day. That said, however, when the lady at work and I were discussing things, I realized that the last few female leads in recent Feehan novels had to me all become the same character. We have discussed here on the blog before the “Alphahole and the Doormat” trend in some of the recent books, but for me things have actually gone beyond that, and the characters have completely blurred together.

When I started to think about things, I realized that in five of the last six Feehan books I have read, you could pretty much substitute one female lead for the next and not know the difference. I am talking the last two Leopard books, the last two Ghostwalker books, and the new Shadows book. Here’s what I mean…

  • All of the female leads are small, curvy, and have long, almost inhumanly thick dark hair.
  • All of them are on the run from the VBM (very bad man) who has hurt them and/or killed someone they love.
  • They are all without family, and only one has a true friend.
  • They all find safety with their VOH (very own hero), but make a half-hearted try to run to save him from the VBM. This is of course stopped before they actually get out the door, but it is the thought that counts.
  • No matter what has happened to them, they have remained innocent and without anger or bitterness. Only sweetness, with a deep core of inner strength (uh, ok).
  • All but one have absolutely nothing to their name, and their VOH buys them long, ruffled skirts and ruffled boots (Seriously. They all have ruffled boots).
  • They are all immediately accepted into their VOH’s very exclusive inner circle and immediately become part of the family. Usually a family that doesn’t trust any outsiders, either, but they are instantly embraced and protected to the death by one and all.
  • All of them are brilliant cooks, or determined to learn to cook perfectly, so they can be the most very perfect homemaker for their VOH. No takeout here, folks. No “make your own sandwich, and me one while your at it”, either. Just brilliant, instantly-made meals that usually leads to a different kind of dessert. Usually on the kitchen floor.
  • Oh, and each and every one of them tempers their VOH’s overbearing, possessive flashes of jealous rage with sweetness, placating, and surrender. Oh, and each one calls their special fella Honey. Not babe, not pumpkin, not any other pet name. Just honey. For all of them. As in “Ok, honey, I understand and I won’t ever, ever do that again. Ever. Even though I didn’t do anything, I won’t do it again. Honey.”

These are just the instances I could think of off of the top of my head. And I guess this formula works for me because I still keep picking up the books (except the last Carpathian book, because I loathed Gabrielle and was a bit horrified by the thought of Grandma Trixie). I have to admit, though, that what I am really getting tired of in the Feehan books is the young, physically and sexually abused girl who ends up being rescued from her horror only to have her story told in a future book. It was done with Skyler in the Dark series, and now there is another one in The Shadows in…Nicoletta? Nicole? Something like that. Maybe it just comes off as too tragic for me, but I could do with that not coming up again anytime soon.

Your turn. Do you think I am nuts, or have you started to see a “female formula” in Christine Feehan’s work? Do you like it, or is it getting old for you? Have you had this sense of deja vu with any other authors that you can think of? Oh, and did my skipping the last Dark book about Gabrielle make me miss anything good, or did it set up any new characters/stories for down the road?

Review

Reading Wrap Up

booksHey everyone. Time once again to touch base and see what we all have been reading recently. On my end, I finished up the Southern Witch series from Kimberly Frost. I did a mini-marathon of the final three books, and it turned out to be a quick, fun read. They gave me a Charley Davidson vibe in the humor department, and it was one of the few instances where a love triangle didn’t make me nuts. I wasn’t particularly fond of Tammy Jo swinging between the two fellas, but since there wasn’t much mystery as to whom she would end up with it worked out ok. I was glad I picked this series up.

I also did both a read and a re-read of Shadow Rider by Christine Feehan. All in all, not a bad first book of a series, and it read like a “real” Feehan book. I do know that there are a ton of characters, meaning a ton of potential books to come. The only thing that sort of bugged me was that we once again get a young, tortured and abused girl introduced that will of course be the mate of one of the male leads after she is old enough. Kind of like Skyler 2.0. I am not a huge fan of that particular plotline, and not looking forward to seeing it all play out again.

And I really enjoyed stepping outside the reading box for a change. Kelley Armstrong is an author that has moved up the ranks to be one of my favorites, and so I thought I would pick up her non-PNR Nadia Stafford series. Not only was it not at all paranormal, but the first couple of books can’t even be called romance. There are hints of romantic tension, but nothing really comes of it until the third story. Nadia Stafford was a police officer who killed a rapist and was thrown off of the force for it. Because of an event in her past, she has a vigilante streak and a willingness to kill, which leads her to the unusual profession of hitman. Nadia was an interesting character, what with her cop mentality and her criminal second life. This one was a treat.

Your turn. What have you been reading? I didn’t tackle much off of my TBR shelf this past couple of weeks, but hopefully I will make a dent the next couple of weeks. Did you manage to whittle down your collection at all, or did you add to it?

Cover Lover

Cover Lover – 6 New Titles

I have done a few stand-alone cover lover posts for some major upcoming releases, but now it is time for the rest. This first one is a young adult release from Sharon Cameron called The Forgetting, and it will be released on September 13th.

the forgettingWhat isn’t written, isn’t remembered. Even your crimes.

Nadia lives in the city of Canaan, where life is safe and structured, hemmed in by white stone walls and no memory of what came before. But every twelve years the city descends into the bloody chaos of the Forgetting, a day of no remorse, when each person’s memories – of parents, children, love, life, and self – are lost. Unless they have been written.

In Canaan, your book is your truth and your identity, and Nadia knows exactly who hasn’t written the truth. Because Nadia is the only person in Canaan who has never forgotten.

But when Nadia begins to use her memories to solve the mysteries of Canaan, she discovers truths about herself and Gray, the handsome glassblower, that will change her world forever. As the anarchy of the Forgetting approaches, Nadia and Gray must stop an unseen enemy that threatens both their city and their own existence – before the people can forget the truth. And before Gray can forget her.

MaryJanice Davidson‘s very last Queen Betsy book is up next. Undead and Done has a release date of October 4th.

undead and doneIt had been a well-kept secret for centuries, but now the existence of vampires is all over the news, thanks to Betsy Taylor’s half sister (and frustrated former Antichrist), Laura. Life for the undead will never be the same, and it’s up to Betsy to do some damage control. But her interview on the local news doesn’t exactly put out the fire. It more or less pours kerosene on it.

With all the added attention on supernatural beings, the werewolves are more than a little agitated (never a good thing) and demand that Betsy gets her interview skills, and her family, in order. And while things go from bad to worse in the world, Hell continues to be hell—especially when Betsy’s new parole program gets about as complicated as you’d expect.

With a PR team launching a vampire-friendly campaign, the Devil at large and out to make trouble, and mermaids on hand to see who falls—and how hard—the end isn’t just near. It’s here. And if anyone knows how to go out with a bang, it’s the Queen of Hell.

Snared, which is the 16th book of the Elemental Assassin series from Jennifer Estep, will be released on January 31st.

snaredIrony 101—The Spider herself snared in someone else’s web…

Another week, another few clues trickling in about the Circle, the mysterious group that supposedly runs the city’s underworld. Gathering intel on my hidden enemies is a painstaking process, but a more immediate mystery has popped up on my radar: a missing girl.

My search for the girl begins on the mean streets of Ashland, but with all the killers and crooks in this city, I’m not holding out much hope that she’s still alive.

A series of clues leads me down an increasingly dark, dangerous path, and I realize that the missing girl is really just the first thread in this web of evil. As an assassin, I’m used to facing down the worst of the worst, but nothing prepares me for this new, terrifying enemy—one who strikes from the shadows and is determined to make me the next victim.

The second book of Sophie Jordan‘s Reign of Shadows series is called Rise of Fire, and it will be released on February 7th.

rise of fireLuna and Fowler have escaped the kingdom of Relhok, but they haven’t escaped the darkness. When a battle against the dark dwellers mortally injures Fowler, Luna is faced with a choice: put their fate in the hands of mysterious strangers or risk losing Fowler forever.

Desperate to keep the one bright part of her life alive, Luna accepts the help of soldiers from a nearby kingdom. Lagonia’s castle offers reprieve from the dangerous outside world—until the king discovers both Fowler’s and Luna’s true ties to Relhok and their influence over the throne.

Now pawns in each kingdom’s political game, Luna and Fowler are more determined than ever to escape and build the life they’ve been dreaming of. But their own pasts have a tight hold on their hearts and their destinies. Luna must embrace the darkness and fire within her before she loses not only Fowler, but the power she was destined to inherit.

Christine Feehan‘s next Leopard book will be called Leopard’s Fury, and it has a release date of November 8th.

leopard's furyWith her own bakery in San Antonio, Evangeline Tregre made a new life far from the brutal lair of shifters she was born into. Though she is all too aware of her leopard-shifter blood, she never felt the sensation of a wild animal stirring inside her. Not until Alonzo Massi walked into her bakery. The powerful shifter is as irresistible as he is terrifying, but his icy demeanor tells her to keep her distance.

Alonzo knows better than to let himself get involved with someone like Evangeline. She doesn’t deserve the type of danger that follows him, or the threat of his Amur leopard. But even with his lean muscle and iron will, Alonzo isn’t strong enough to stay away from the one woman who can make him feel at peace. And when their secret lives draw a mortal threat, Alonzo unleashes the feral passion he keeps pent up inside himself.

This next one is a two-for-one deal. Gena Showalter and Jeaniene Frost will be paired up for a re-release of two of their previous works. Gena’s The Nymph King and Jeaniene’s The Beautiful Ashes will be out in an e-format duology called Forbidden Craving, which will be out on April 1st.

9780373801916_1f3cfThe Nymph King 

Gena Showalter 

Females young and old, beautiful and plain crave Valerian’s touch. None can resist his blatant sensuality and potent allure—until he steals Shaye Holling from a Florida beach and holds her prisoner in his underwater kingdom. Now Valerian must fight for the privilege of claiming her as his own. Because there’s one thing Shaye doesn’t know…when a nymph discovers his true mate, she’s his for life.

Includes all new scenes! 

The Beautiful Ashes 

Jeaniene Frost 

With her sister missing, Ivy discovers a startling truth—the disturbing, otherworldly hallucinations she’s always had are real, and her sister is trapped in a demon realm. The one person who can help her is the dangerously attractive rebel who’s bound by an ancient legacy to betray her. With destiny on one side and desire on the other, Adrian and Ivy must work together to save her sister. Yet he knows the truth about Ivy’s destiny, and sooner or later, it will be Ivy on one side, Adrian on the other and nothing but ashes in between…

There you have it for this batch. Are you checking any of these out? The write up for The Forgetting sounds really good, but I am still anti-YA. I will be picking up Leopard’s Fury, but that is probably about it for this batch. Are you sad to say goodbye to Queen Betsy, or is it past time to wrap things up?

Picks of the Week

Pick of the Week

There are some good releases coming out this week, but I think for my pick I am going to have to go with The Curse of Tenth Grave from Darynda Jones. I am interested to see how things progress after the events in Ninth Grave.

the curse of tenth graveSynopsis…

Part-time PI and full-time grim reaper, Charley Davidson has asked a lot of questions throughout her life: Why can I see dead people? Who is the hot supernatural entity following me? How do I get gum out of my sister’s hair before she wakes up? But, “How do I trap not one god, but three?” was never among them. Until now. And since those gods are on earth to kill her daughter, she has little choice but to track them down, trap them, and cast them from this dimension.

But one of them stole her heart a very long time ago. Can a god of absolute death and destruction change his omniscient spots, or will his allegiance lie with his brothers?

Those are just some of the questions Charley must answer, and quick. Add to that a homeless girl on the run for her life, a man who’s been framed for murdering a woman who is still very much alive, and a pendant made from god glass that has the entire supernatural world in an uproar, Charley has her hands full. If she can manage to take care of the whole world-destroying-gods thing, we’re saved. If not, well…

I got my copy already, but I chose to read Shadow Riders by Christine Feehan first, which I have been quite enjoying. It reads like a “Feehan” book, unlike some of the past few stories have. All in all, this is a nice release week, I must say.

New Series Alerts

New Series Alerts

It has been a while since there have been any number of new series starting up to highlight, but this week isn’t shaping up too badly at all. Cynthia Eden‘s new Bad Things fires up with the release of Devil in Disguise.

the devil in disguiseSynopsis…

Don’t make the devil angry…

Luke Thorne loves having one hell of a good time. As the ruler of every dark creature to walk the earth, he certainly has more than a bit of a bad side. He lives for danger and isn’t the type to lose his heart—mostly because he doesn’t have one. Then she walks into his life.

Mina James is seduction in the flesh, a perfect temptation that the devil himself couldn’t pass up. Too late, Luke realizes he’s let a real siren into his life, a woman who is bent on using his dark powers to free herself from hidden enemies. Since Luke isn’t the type of man to be used, he should walk away from her, but…something about Mina draws him close.

Soon he’s realizing that she isn’t who she appears to be. Not dark and cold, but burning red hot. Mina is a woman fighting for her life—and the Lord of the Dark suddenly finds himself in an unlikely role…hero. Luke isn’t going to let her enemies destroy Mina. He will fight heaven and hell to keep her. But in the end, the secrets they both carry may just rip apart a love that should never have been…

This next one is from Christine Feehan. Shadow Rider is the first book of The Shadows series.

shadow riderSynopsis…

Whether it’s fast cars or fast women, Stefano Ferraro gets what he wants. When he’s not fodder for the paparazzi, he commands Ferarro family businesses—both legitimate and illegitimate.

While their criminal activity is simply a rumor yet to be proven, no one knows the real truth. The Ferraros are a family of shadow riders capable of manipulating light and dark, an ability Stefano thought ran in his family alone—until now…

With little left to her name, Francesca Cappello has come to Chicago in hopes of a new life. She wasn’t expecting to attract the attention of a man with primal hunger in his eyes, driven to claim her as his to protect and to please. And if he discovers her secret, it could ruin her…

And this last one comes from Pippa DaCosta. Chaos Rises is the first book of the Chaos series.

chaos risesSynopsis…

When the veil fell, any half bloods not strong enough to withstand Chaos were torn apart. Some, like me and my brother, survived The Fall. Most did not.

That’s the good news. The bad news saw a whole other world try and devour ours. Demons, we call them. They came in countless waves. Destroying. Killing. Many people thought it was the end…

The Fall lasted a week.

Tens of thousands died.

Hell almost claimed our world as its own.

And then, from one day to the next, it was over. The veil came back, stronger than ever. I’m not sure if anyone knows how it was put right. But I do know it’s been six months since The Fall, me and my brother are on the run, and the leftover demons aren’t the most dangerous things in LA.

We are.

I actually already got my copy of Shadow Rider today, and I am really tempted to dive in. I did of course head to the back to read the excerpt for the next book, Dark Carousel, which will be Tariq’s story. I like the change from the mountains/jungles to a more urban setting that was started in a previous novella. And it looks we will finally get some payoff on that whole “psychic testing center” tangent that started quite a few books back, which is great since I don’t like dangling plotlines that never get resolved.

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My OMG-WTF-LOL Moment of the Week

Minor spoilers ahead for Fire Bound.

I have mentioned in a few comments that I really enjoyed the latest Christine Feehan book, Fire Bound, which was my pick of the week. It is the second-to-last book of the Sisters of the Heart part of the Sea Haven books, but Christine recently announced that she had plans to write more books set in this world, and that they would focus on a group of Russian bikers that move to town. Great. Logic told me that they would somehow be connected to the last Prakenskii brother, Viktor, who has been MIA for the last 5 years. All good so far.

So, it turns out that yes, indeed, the next books set in Sea Haven will focus on the “brothers” Viktor made in the school he was trained in, the most brutal of all the facilities. When they finish their last assignment, he and his crew will head to Sea Haven. I liked the set up, and I figured that it was an interesting direction to take this world. I figured it would ideally be a group of 5, maybe 6 of Viktor’s nearest and dearest. Maybe 8 if Christine Feehan reaaaallllly wanted to milk it. But here is where my OMG-WTF-LOL comes in. Is it going to be 6? Or 8? Nope…wait for it…wait for it…

Seventeen. Seven. Teen.

Yes, you read that right. Seventeen psychically gifted Russian assassins are heading for Sea Haven. Seventeen highly trained, completely Alpha bikers. I read that, then stopped. Stared. Read again. Then I started to laugh hysterically. That is so randomly over the top I can’t even deal. Seriously? Is it just me, or do you find that completely crazy? At one book per series per year – well, do the math. I like the idea – truly, I do, but SEVENTEEN of them? There is milking it for all it is worth, and there is milking it, then beating it into the ground, then setting it on fire to finish it off. It is like a Russian version of the Ghostwalkers, where more and more characters are added until there is no hope of ever getting all of the stories told (by the way, there are still 27 Ghostwalker men over the four teams who need to get their stories, not to mention the females). Oy. But I did have a good laugh.