Reading Wrap Up

It’s been a while since I was around, so I thought I might do up a reading wrap up post to see what you thought on some recent releases from the last month or so.

LionheartI picked up Lionheart from Thea Harrison, and it feels like it has been forever since there was anything new from the Elder Races world. I liked this one way more than I thought I would, which is always a plus. It wasn’t a book I was particularly excited for, for whatever reason, but it was another good, solid story that had a few decent cameos from the original Wyr gang back in New York. I just wish that we knew what was coming next.

shadow and iceAnd then there was Shadow and Ice from Gena Showalter. I mentioned this one before, and sadly things didn’t change. I had to DNF this one, which is something that I might do to a book maybe twice a year. The whole tone of the book rubbed me wrong. Quip quip quip. More quips. Hair flip. Growl. Quip. It was just a big no. What did surprise me when I looked on Goodreads to see if I was just being bitchy about is was how divided people were in their reactions. It seems like it is all either 5 star reviews…or DNF’s. And there are a lot of DNF’s for it, which I haven’t really noticed for a Gena Showalter book before. The sad thing is is that I really wanted to like it, but I guess you can’t win them all.

Shades of Wicked CR: Avon

So, Shades of Wicked from Jeaniene Frost. To say I was excited for Ian’s story would be a bit of an understatement, and I wasn’t disappointed. Sometimes, for me, when a side character I really like gets their own story it can become too much of a good thing, and some of the charm can wear off. Or their character gets watered down. Thankfully, that didn’t happen here at all – Ian was Ian, and it was great. Loved Veritas, too, which is a bonus. Now starting the countdown to Wicked Bite.

USA_Archangels_Prophecy_Cover_-_CopyArchangel’s Prophecy was a bit tricky. I know some were a bit miffed by the cliffhanger ending – that didn’t bother me. And I can’t say that I didn’t like it – but I didn’t love it, either. I can’t put my finger on why, but it felt like there were things going on that I just couldn’t get interested in. Like the Favashi and Harrison arcs – they weren’t bad, but I just wasn’t invested in them. Which meant that I big portion of the book didn’t really grab me. I didn’t skim, but there were times I was tempted. Still a solid book, but just not my favorite from Nalini Singh.

36188722_10157537628422598_9214164022109143040_nI also read the latest Leopard People book from Christine Feehan, Leopard’s Run. Not much to say about this one. It was ok. Maybe I was just in a mood, but there wasn’t much in way of story going on, just lots of mating issues. I did LOL at the cats having names – well, not the cats. Ashe’s cat – Godiva. Godiva? Seriously. I did a serious eye-roll every single time someone referenced Godiva. Lord. It was good for a cringe-laugh, though.

39320167And finally, there is my hands-down winner, Diamond Fire. This is only a novella, but it works so well as a transition from Nevada to Catalina’s story. Ilona Andrews‘ Hidden Legacy series is probably my favorite series going, which is saying something, but even so this was a great story. If this little story is any indication, I might even like Catalina’s character more than Nevada’s…and her powers are awesome. During the first three books, I kind of thought she got the dud magic, but that is a big no. Not at all. My most anticipated book by a long, long way for next year? Catalina’s first full book, Sapphire Flames.

Your turn. What did you think of some of the recent releases? Did anything stand out to you – good or bad?

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Pick of the Week

As usual, I have to start a post like this with a disclaimer. I love the Hidden Legacy series. Right from the first book, I had a weird, slightly over-the-top love for it. At this point, I would even go so far as to say that it is my favorite series. Period. All of what Ilona Andrews writes is a favorite, which is amazing in its own right, but Hidden Legacy tops them all. So, I might be (so totally am) biased, but my pick of the week is the Hidden Legacy novella, Diamond Fire.

39320167Synopsis…

Nevada Frida Baylor and Connor Ander Rogan cordially invite you to join their wedding celebration. Summoning, weather manipulation, and other magical activities strictly forbidden.

Catalina Baylor is looking forward to wearing her maid of honor dress and watching her older sister walk down the aisle. Then the wedding planner gets escorted off the premises, the bride’s priceless tiara disappears, and Rogan’s extensive family overruns his mother’s home. Someone is cheating, someone is lying, and someone is plotting murder.

To make this wedding happen, Catalina will have to do the thing she fears most: use her magic. But she’s a Baylor and there’s nothing she wouldn’t do for her sister’s happiness. Nevada will have her fairy tale wedding, even if Catalina has to tear the mansion apart brick by brick to get it done.

This novella, honestly, was awesome. It was a sweet “end” for Nevada and Rogan, and it served as a great introduction for what is to come. Catalina has a different voice, different personality and different set of challenges to face than her sister did, and we get a little taste of that here. And guess what? Hidden Legacy #4 is my most anticipated book for next year, bar none. Let my stalking begin.

 

This and That

blah-quote-300x300Well, a this or that post. Or it is probably better labeled the one where I ramble. First off, I did manage to get two guides up to date – the one for the Elder Races series, and the one for the Fever World. I was only behind one novella for the Elder Races one, so that wasn’t too much drama, but I did really enjoy my re-read of High Voltage for the Fever series. Part of it felt like an ending, but then there were so many things left that shouted more to come that I was a bit confused. I haven’t heard anything about upcoming stories, though, have any of you? And come to think of it, I haven’t heard much about more Elder Races, either. Sigh.

Will any of you be picking up Consumed from J.R. Ward? I did read the two free prequel novellas – and I liked them, such as they were. But for some reason I can’t work up much excitement for the book itself. Maybe because it is non-PNR and I am pretty much firmly entrenched? I only really follow Kelley Armstrong‘s Rockton books for a non woo-woo series, but maybe it is time to branch out?

Speaking of branching out, I went on a bit of a book-buying binge over the last couple of weeks. I took a tour through the Kindle freebies and new release pages and Netgalley and grabbed a bunch of stuff…

Yeah, I blew my buy-it-and-read-it technique out of the water, but whatever. Those were on top of my regularly scheduled pre-orders like Lora Leigh‘s Cross Breed, too. Hopefully I got that out of my system for a while, though, because I refuse to let the TBR take over. Again. I did already have Silver Shark, but I deleted it and re-bought it along with Silent Blade so I would have the new covers for both. And when I downloaded it? I got the old cover. I grumbled a bit, but it isn’t a big deal to fix it and send it as a document, but still. I grumbled. Have you been branching out any lately into the great unknown?

I have really been trying to watch some tv shows and movies lately. People always look at me funny when I say I don’t watch tv, but I honestly don’t. I will find a show that sounds interesting and pick up the first couple to try from itunes, and if I like it I will continue picking up an episode here and there. I have Netflix but I can go a month without even turning it on. If I watch 2 hours of programming a week, that would be about it. I did manage to drag myself through the whole first season of Westworld, but I kept trying to make myself like it more than I did so I gave up. Ditto for The Gifted. Iron Fist I only made maybe three or four episodes before it got annoying. I dropped The Walking Dead after Glen and Abraham, but I might go back again. Some day. The Punisher is going pretty well, I guess, but I still don’t feel the need to marathon. But the show I am binge watching? Keeping Up With the Kardashians. I kid you not. I can’t get enough. It is so weird, but I have a strange addiction. I might need help –  but not until I am caught up.

So, that’s me. What about you? Anything exciting going on (or, like me, not)?

Kate Daniels Guide

magic triumphsThis is just a quick post to say that the Kate Daniels World Character Guide has now been updated to include the info from Magic Triumphs. I had a few people emailing me asking me why I hadn’t included it – it just took a while to get it added. So, as of now, everything for is is up to date.

On a side note, a re-read of Magic Triumphs was absolutely no hardship. In fact, I think I liked it even more the second time around. I wasn’t as greedy to get through it, so I picked up some things I missed the first time around.

This and That

I don’t have a ton to share this time, but there are a couple of things that I was really happy to see…

  • We are one step closer to more Hidden Legacy. It looks like the fourth book from the Ilona Andrews series doesn’t have a title as yet, but it will coming out on August 27th.
  • I am looking forward to Ian’s Night Rebel series from Jeaniene Frost, and it looks like the second book is in the works. Wicked Promises will be released next July 30th.
  • There will be a fourth book in Chloe Neill‘s Devil’s Isle series. The Beyond will be released next June.
  • I thought the Secret McQueen series from Sierra Dean had wrapped up, but it looks like the 9th book will be released this December. It’s called Secret Lives.
  • There is no official title as yet, but the 49th In Death book from J.D. Robb will be coming out next August 1st. I am about half way through the series, but still a darn long way to go.
  • Oh, and I missed a couple of Thea Harrison novella collection re-releases…

41399723The Elder Races Tarot Collection came out on August 19th, and it contains True ColorsNatural EvilDevil’s Gate, and Hunter’s Season.

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41741989A Dragon’s Family Album: Final Collection was released on September 6th, and it features Dragos Takes a HolidayPia Saves the DayPeanut Goes to SchoolDragos Goes to WashingtonPia Does HollywoodLiam Takes Manhattan, and Planet Dragos.

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41806660And if you are interested in the whole collection, you can pick up The Elder Races: Complete Novella Bundle. It contains True ColorsNatural EvilDevil’s GateHunter’s SeasonThe WickedDragos Takes a HolidayPia Saves the DayPeanut Goes to SchoolDragos Goes to WashingtonPia Does HollywoodLiam Takes ManhattanThe Chosen, and Planet Dragos.

 

Pick of the Week and Discussion Post

So, duh. Magic Triumphs, the 10th and final story in the main Kate Daniels series, is my book of the week. I can’t really decide if I am more excited to see how Kate and Curran get their HEA, or to see Hugh and Elara make an appearance and how that goes. I am very grateful to know that Ilona Andrews plans more stories set in this world, no matter who they are focused on, because it isn’t time to say goodbye yet at all.

I thought we could have a prediction/discussion section here, too. Hit the comments section to talk about what you want to happen, and how you feel about what did happen. Any predictions? Wishes? Regrets?

magic triumphsSynopsis…

Kate has come a long way from her origins as a loner taking care of paranormal problems in post-Shift Atlanta. She’s made friends and enemies. She’s found love and started a family with Curran Lennart, the former Beast Lord. But her magic is too strong for the power players of the world to let her be.

Kate and her father, Roland, currently have an uneasy truce, but when he starts testing her defenses again, she knows that sooner or later, a confrontation is inevitable. The Witch Oracle has begun seeing visions of blood, fire, and human bones. And when a mysterious box is delivered to Kate’s doorstep, a threat of war from the ancient enemy who nearly destroyed her family, she knows their time is up.

Kate Daniels sees no other choice but to combine forces with the unlikeliest of allies. She knows betrayal is inevitable. She knows she may not survive the coming battle. But she has to try.

For her child.

For Atlanta.

For the world.

 

Magic Triumphs Review

Welp, not sure how I feel about this. On the one hand, next week we get an Ilona Andrews new release. On the other hand, Magic Triumphs is the final book in the Kate Daniels series. Thankfully, though, Doug Meeks sent over his review and it made me hopeful for what is to come.

magic triumphsWhat Doug said…

Well here we are at the end of the road that I started almost 10 years ago with “Magic Bites” a book I was not so impressed with and took 3 times starting it to get me to finish it, I was surprised I grabbed book 2 “Magic burns” but it was getting interesting but book 3 “Magic Strikes” hooked me into this land of Kate Daniels and I loved her and this world more with each book.

I don’t know how many people I have told “Read the first 3 books and you will never stop” but here we are at the epic conclusion of Kate and Curran, I had no idea how they were going to pull off ending this epic tale without leaving me as a puddle of depression but they pulled it off along with some other goodies while taking care of almost every concern I had along the way down to some things I had not even thought of myself.

I am not going to give much away but we have a new enemy at the gates so to speak and he is powerful enough to require everything Kate and Curran can throw at him plus they may have to ask for help from sources they would never have thought about (you might want to read Iron & Magic before this one, gives you a little bit of info and some insight) and this is a wild story indeed.

The thing that made this a really great book is the fact that I was not horribly  depressed when it ended but looking forward to stories in this world since it would appear we are going to see more but not with Kate and Curran as the main characters, you won’t know until the end about what future direction may be but I find it exciting and can’t wait.

You can’t have an epic battle with godlike creatures amidst mortals without some tragedy and most I accept but maybe one day I will get to ask about 1 of them that I always felt was a unique, wonderful and misunderstood character.  They could have left that one alone but sadly did not …..

So, without really telling you anything about the story other than you are probably going to see almost every character that is still alive it was freaking fantastic and they did it without it feeling like an ending but a new beginning, only the best can accomplish something like that.  Well done indeed folks, well done indeed.

Honestly, I love everything Ilona Andrews writes. I am not exaggerating or trying to sound like a suck-up, but it is just fact – they write. I love. I am ok with Kate and Curran getting some down time, especially if it means more Derek and Julie, more Hugh and Elara, more Roman and maybe Ascanio and…well, you get the drift.

How are you handling “the end”? Ready, or not?

 

Random Site Stuff

Hey all. I just thought that I would give a little site update, since it has been a while…

  • The new release dates have been checked and updated, and there have been a few titles that have been shifted around a bit. Most only changed by a week or two, but there were a few releases that faced a bit bigger pushback. Gena Showalter‘s The Evil Queen and Christine Warren‘s Your Lion Eyes were both pushed back to end of June release dates, for example.
  • On that note, I am going to also be adding some new titles to the new release pages, too. It is time to do some hunting and see what has been announced since my last check through. I should have everything up-to-datish by tomorrow night.
  • I also will be adding the info from Ocean Light to the Psy/Changeling character guide, which will bring my Nalini Singh stuff up to date. Now I am only like a dozen behind. Next up will be Iron and Magic for the Kate Daniels guide, so things will be set for the release of Magic Triumphs in a couple of weeks. I hope.
  • I also deleted the guide for J.D. Robb‘s In Death series. Honestly, I gave myself a head shake and realized that there was no way in hell I would ever get up to date on that sucker. None. And because it is so episodic in nature, I never found myself needing to know about characters from previous books. So, I didn’t feel it was a big loss.
  • Still not sure about the fonts that I have been using on the site. I might be playing around a little bit more with that, but it has been a bit of a challenge of finding one that I like the look of.

 

That is about it. Any suggestions? Have you seen anything around here that needs a tweaking?

Reading Wrap Up

This should probably be sub-titled “new to me and a change of heart”, since that is pretty much what I have been up to. I have been on a bit of a roll with some new to me authors, which has been great. I picked up the first two books in the Guardian series from Rayanne Haines, Fire Born and Magic Born, and ended up liking both of them. Honestly, I grabbed them strictly for the covers, but ended up sticking around for the story. Definitely looking forward to whatever comes next.

real men howlAlso new-to-me are Celia Kyle and Marina Maddix, the authors of the Real Men Shift series. Again, shallow as it is, the cover for the first book caught my eye and made me do the “one-click” thing before I really thought it through, but it was another success. Both Real Men Howl and Real Men Snarl are quick, easy reads and I found myself finishing each of them in one sitting. There is one brother’s story left to tell, (Real Men Growl – due out this August) but I do hope the series continues on after that.

hunt the moonAnother great find was author Kari Cole. I picked up the first book of her Mated by Fate series called Hunt the Moon, and I ended up enjoying it a lot. I liked the world building and both the main and supporting characters, and I am looking forward to getting my hands on the second book, Touch the Sky, when it comes out in September.

I had decided not to pick up the latest Gena Showalter book, The Darkest Warrior, not because I was mad about who Gilly ended up with or anything but just because I didn’t really have any big excitement for the book. I think my enjoyment of the Lords books is really hampered by the fact that I just don’t remember much about the series at this point. I always seem to enjoy them when I read them, but then I promptly forget everything as soon as I close the Kindle. Well, that didn’t hamper me at all this time around, and I very much enjoyed The Darkest Warrior. It felt almost stand alone (except for William, who is the only character I seem to remember), so I just got to happily read a really good story without trying to remember who is who and what happened before. Definitely glad I changed my mind on this one.

rough justiceAaaand I might’ve been pretty quick to grab up Rough Justice from Kelley Armstrong. Anything Cainsville related is an automatic win for me, and this decent length novella story is no exception. I am very glad that there wasn’t any Olivia-and-Gabriel relationship drama…well, not much and not serious, anyways. Ideally, I would love to see a spin-off or something featuring Ricky getting his HEA, but I am not sure that is in the cards.

iron and magicFinally, though, there is the jewel of the lot, and that is Iron and Magic from Ilona Andrews. I don’t have much to say about this one other than that I absolutely loved it. Love love love. Loved Hugh. Loved Elara. Loved the fact that the whole world-building felt different enough from Kate Daniels to really stand on its own while still making me giddy thinking of future crossovers (Hugh and Elara must show up in Magic Triumphs, right?). I so need a re-read of this one since I was a greedy brat who devoured it way, way too quickly, but that won’t be a chore at all. Not sure where or when the next book will be, but I will be there.

Your turn. What have you been enjoying lately? Anything exciting?

Cover Lover – 2 New Titles

On a totally unrelated note, I have been playing around with the on-site fonts. I can’t really find one that works for me – either too chunky or too blocky or too meh – so let me know what you find easier to read.

Now for the covers. I only found a couple to share, but they are both for series that I actually read, so that is a bit of a bonus. Ilona Andrews‘ upcoming Hidden Legacy novella, Diamond Fire, is a big old must read, and I was happy to find the pretty cover.

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And Christine Feehan also released the cover for her next Leopard People book, Leopard’s Run. It will be released November 6th.

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There you have it. What do you think of these covers?