Book of the Month

Eh, November. Not a month I am really excited over. Honestly, there is only one new release this month that I will be picking up – well, one plus Kelley Armstrong‘s Nadia Stafford novella, Perfect Victim, but that doesn’t really count here. At least it will give me a chance to finish up my Jane Yellowrock world marathon (the only type of marathon I will ever be in, too). So, it is time to pick your book of the month for November. I have chosen 10 titles to list for the poll, but if you have something else you are anticipating just select “Other” and leave your choice in the comments section. Let’s hope I can not bungle this like I did for October. Anyways, a complete listing of November’s releases can be found HERE.

So, my pick will have to be Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake (probably because it is the only new release I will be picking up this month). Come to think of it, I don’t remember there being a ton I am dying to get my hands on for December, either. I might be ending 2017 with a whimper.

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Nadia Novella News

Usually, I stick pretty firmly to my rules of only spotlighting releases that have a paranormal or supernatural romance angle, mostly because if you start branching out it is hard to know where to start. But once in a while, a favorite author will do something a little different. Kelley Armstrong has several great series that I have very much enjoyed, and it looks like she has a novella in the works that will tie two of them together. Nadia Stafford #3.6 will be called Perfect Victim, and it will also feature a character from her Rockton books. Yay to crossovers – especially ones that make perfect story-line sense. And there isn’t much of a wait for it, either, since it will be released on November 1st.

perfect victimSynopsis…

Fifteen years ago, hit man Tyrone Cypher disappeared into the wilderness. Now he’s back with a job for his old “friend” Jack. While Jack doesn’t consider Cypher much of a friend, the job is ideal for Nadia.

There’s a killer in Honolulu, targeting those involved in the family court system. When no one else would take one victim’s cases, lawyer Angela Kamaka did, putting herself squarely in the killer’s cross-sights.

For Nadia, Angela is the perfect victim—an innocent person in danger for doing the right thing. So Nadia and Jack get an all-expenses paid trip to Hawaii courtesy of Tyrone Cypher, who has his own reasons for wanting to keep Angela safe.

Do you have any favorite cross-overs? I liked seeing some of the BDB gang show up in J.R. Ward‘s Fallen Angels series. And right now I am reading Easy Pickings from Faith Hunter and C.E. Murphy – which would probably be great if I had read C.E. Murphy before, but since I haven’t it isn’t a big deal for me. Are there any series that you would like to see get the cross-over treatment?

 

Pick of the Week

You know those books that you both can’t wait to get your hands on and dread getting at the same time? Rituals from Kelley Armstrong is like that for me. I love this series – more with every book, it seems – but it also the fifth and final book. I don’t like saying goodbye to a favorite, but I also appreciate when an author knows when to wrap things up. I did get my print copy a day early, though, and it is great so far – loving where things are going.

ritualsSynopsis…

The fifth book and the exciting conclusion to bestselling author Kelley Armstrong’s “impossible-to-put-down” Cainsville series, in which she mixes hard-hitting crime writing with phenomenal world-building to create a brand of fiction all her own.

Olivia Jones must make a choice. Caught between two rival supernatural forces, Liv was granted a brief period in which to make her decision. Now that time has run out. Whichever side she chooses, someone she loves will pay. Her lover, Ricky. Gabriel Walsh, the man she knows she cannot, must not love. Her parents, already trapped in prison.And now there is a new, terrifying power rising – one that doesn’t distinguish between good and evil intentions. It feeds on chaos and destroys without mercy. Unless Liv acts fast, no one will survive. In this gripping thriller, international bestselling author Kelley Armstrong brings the Cainsville series to a powerful, richly rewarding climax.

Book of the Month

As July is crawling to a close, it is time to look ahead to see what will be coming our way in August. There aren’t a ton of books coming out for me, but there is one monster one that will be bittersweet. Kelley Armstrong‘s final Cainsville book, Rituals, will be out on the 15th, and as happy as I am to get another story, saying goodbye to a favorite series is never fun. I still hold out hope that this isn’t the end, though. Anyways, I have listed a few books that you might be anticipating, but if another title is your choice for book of the month, just select “Other” and leave your pick in the comments section. A complete list of August’s releases can be found HERE.

Cover Lover – This Fallen Prey

Usually, I quite strictly follow my own rule of only posting about PNR or UF books. But once in a while, a favorite author branches out to a different genre, and I break down and show a little tidbit. In this case, the favorite author is Kelley Armstrong, and she has released the cover and blurb for her third Casey Duncan/Rockton book, This Fallen Prey. From what she has said, the publisher has decided to change direction with the cover art, and I am not so sure that was the best idea. I really liked the first two, but this one is…dirt. And roots. But mostly dirt. Meh. And I still can’t wait to get my hands on it when it is released next February.

this fallen preyWhen Casey first arrived at the off-the-grid town, an isolated community built as a haven for people running from their pasts, she had no idea what to expect, with no cell phones, no internet, no mail, and no way of getting in or out without the town council’s approval. But the very last thing she expected was for the council to drop a dangerous criminal into their midst without a plan to keep him imprisoned, and to keep others safe.

Of course Oliver Brady claims he’s being set up. But the longer Brady stays in town, the more things start to go wrong. When evidence comes to light that someone inside Rockton might be working as his accomplice, helping him to escape, Casey races to figure out who exactly Brady is and what crimes he’s truly responsible for committing.

Having this to look forward to in no way diminishes the pain I will feel when Cainsville wraps up this fall, but it doesn’t hurt, either. What are your current non-PNR/UF favorite reads? Do you have any favorite cross-genre authors?

This and That

Meh, there hasn’t been a ton going on lately, and it has been a while since I have done one of these little update posts. Still, there are a couple of things to mention.

  • Ilona Andrews recently did a blog post where they answered some frequently asked questions. It looks like there is a Roman-based trilogy in the works, which might be headed our way next year. Oh, and Hugh’s book will be called Iron and Magic. But I totally have to confess that I broke down and emailed Ilona and asked about Hidden Legacy having more books. They were kind enough to answer back and say that if sales are good, the series would probably continue on with Avon, but if that doesn’t work out they will probably self-pub. The happy dance I did was not pretty, but I don’t even care.
  • Kelley Armstrong‘s third Rockton/Casey Duncan book has a title and release date. This Fallen Prey will be out on February 6th, 2018.
  • Dark in Death will be the title of the 46th In Death book from J.D. Robb, and it will be released next February.
  • Anyone like me who waited forever for Gena Showalter to write Dallas’s story was probably pretty happy with the Blood Red Kiss anthology. Dark Swan will be re-released as a stand-alone e-book this October 2nd.
  • The third book from Gena Showalter‘s young adult trilogy, Everlife, will also be called Everlife, and it has a release date of February 27th.
  • Christine Feehan‘s first Torpedo Ink story will be called Judgment Road, and it will out at the end of next January.
  • Christine Warren is starting up a new series called Alphaville, and the first book is called Baby I’m Howling For You. Look for it on January 30th.
  • Larissa Ione is one of several authors doing a sort of mash-up of their series with Lexi Blake‘s Masters and Mercenaries series, and her contribution will be called Her Guardian Angel. It has a release date of April 10th. I am going to dig around a bit more and see what I can find on these stories, since I think the concept is pretty interesting.
  • Chloe Neill‘s Chicagoland Vampires spin-off series featuring Elisa and Connor will get its start next March. The first book will be called Wild Hunger.
  • Next March will also see the third book of Kerrelyn Sparks‘s The Embraced series released, and this one is called Eight Simple Rules For Dating a Dragon.
  • Oh, and C.L. Wilson‘s delayed second book of the Weathermages of Mystral series, The Sea King, has been rescheduled for this October 31st.

Well, that was more than I thought, but it has been a while. Anything you are looking forward to?

Reading Wrap Up

Hey everyone, time once again to do a check in and see what everyone has been reading and loving (or not so much) recently.

Personally, I had a really good run. My read of Wicked Abyss was a happy thing since I have been a bit blah on the last few books of Kresley Cole‘s Immortals After Dark series. I enjoyed this one (and Shadow’s Seduction, as well), so things are moving in the right direction. Has it crawled back up to the top of my favorites list? Nope. But I won’t be so ambivalent about the next one, either.

My best read, though, from the ones I have had lately, came from Kelley Armstrong. I never bothered picking up her Lost Souls book because honestly I thought it was just a graphic novel – nope. I guess the print edition did have some illustrations, but the e-book version was just a Gabriel-centric novella. A whole story with a Gabriel POV?!? Why the hell didn’t I pick this up before. This one gave me a more in-depth look at just what makes Gabriel tick, how his mind works, had how badly he wants Olivia in his life. Total winner, and I am just annoyed that I didn’t get it sooner.

Oh, and I finally got off my ass and finished Richelle Mead‘s Bloodlines series. The final book, The Ruby Circle, has been sitting on my shelf for over two years, and I just decided it was time. I am horrible about not wanting to read the last book in a series because I don’t like things that end, but on the other hand I don’t like things left undone, either. Try and balance that one if you can. Anyways, it was a decent send-off for the series, and while it has been a few years since I was involved in the storyline it didn’t take me long to pick things up again. I still say there could easily be a Jill and Eddie series, but it doesn’t seem like that is in the cards.

Your turn. What have you been up to for great reads lately? Have you gone back and dusted off any old TBRs, or are you still on the new-release reads?

Cover Lover – 7 New Titles

It has been less than a week since my last cover lover post, but I am going to go for it anyways. Plus, there is a big one (for me), so that makes me even happier. Let’s start with the fifth and final (crap) Cainsville book from Kelley Armstrong, Rituals. I am not looking forward to seeing this series wrap up, I have to say. But then it is one among many this year, so I better get used to it. Anyways, Rituals will be released on August 15th.

ritualsWhen Olivia Taylor-Jones found out she was not actually the adopted child of a privileged Chicago family but of a notorious pair of convicted serial killers, her life exploded. Running from the fall-out, she found a refuge in the secluded but oddly welcoming town of Cainsville, Illinois, but she couldn’t resist trying to dig out the truth about her birth parents’ crimes. She began working with Gabriel Walsh, a fiendishly successful criminal lawyer who also had links to the town; their investigation soon revealed Celtic mysteries at work in Cainsville, and also entangled Olivia in a tense love triangle with the calculating Gabriel and her charming biker boyfriend, Ricky. Worse, troubling visions revealed to Olivia that the three of them were reenacting an ancient drama pitting the elders of Cainsville against the mysterious Huntsmen with Olivia as the prize.

In the series’ fifth and final novel, not only does Gabriel’s drug addict mother, who he thought was dead, make a surprise reappearance, but Kelley Armstrong delivers a final scary and surprising knock-out twist. It turns out a third supernatural force has been at work all along, a dark and malevolent entity that has had its eye on Olivia since she was a baby and wants to win at any cost.

These next two are a bit different. They are the covers for the first and second book in Juliet Lyons‘ new V-Date.com series. Book one is called Dating the Undead, and it will be released on May 2nd.

dating the undead.jpgIt’s Bridget Jones with vampires in this fresh and funny paranormal romance from debut author Juliet Lyons.

When Silver Harris kisses sexy Irish vampire Logan Byrne on New Year’s Eve, she knows other humans just won’t suffice. Convinced she’ll never see him again, she joins the uber-popular vampire dating site, V-Date.com.

What Silver doesn’t know is that the site is more dangerous than she could ever imagined, and soon she’s in over her head. When Logan returns, sparks fly and attraction sizzles, but they’ll have to escape some very real demons if they have any chance of lasting forever.

And it will be followed by Romancing the Undead on October 3rd.

romancing-the-undeadMila Hart’s first experience with the vampire dating site V-Date.com is a complete disaster–her date is wanted for murder! But things turn around when she’s rescued by dashing vampire cop Vincent Ferrer. Dangerous and devastatingly attractive, he’s just the undead hottie Mila was hoping for.

Haunted by his past, Vincent can’t risk falling in love again–even if Mila charms him more than anyone he’s ever met. But when the killer from Mila’s date seeks her out, Vincent is the only one who can protect her. Protecting his heart is a different story…

Terry Spear‘s 22nd Heart of the Wolf book will be called SEAL Wolf Undercover, and it will be released on August 1st.

seal-wolf-undercoverNavy SEAL wolf turned PI Vaughn Greystroke has always worked alone. But when a string of attempted shifter murders put him in the path of an alluring–and potentially dangerous–she-wolf, having a partner doesn’t sound so bad…

This cover looks so familiar to me, but it could just be a matter of reusing the image, I guess. Either way, Never Dare a Dragon from Ashlyn Chase, the third book in her Boston Dragons series, will be released on August 1st.

never-dare-a-dragonJayce Fierro is part of a legendary Boston firefighting family of phoenix shifters. Hiding his true form makes being in a relationship rather difficult. Meeting the beautiful Lieutenant Kristine Scott of the New York City Fire Department and knowing he can’t have her only makes things worse.

Dragon shifter Kristine can’t stop thinking about fun, flirty Jayce and his teasing smile. A relationship could never work-not with the distance between them, and definitely not with her shifter secret. But when Kristine lands herself in a blaze of trouble and secrets are revealed, Jayce will do whatever it takes to help-whether or not the feisty, stubborn New Yorker wants him to.

And Paige Tyler has a new one coming out, as well. Her Dark Half is part of her X-Ops series, and it will be out on September 5th.

her dark half.jpgCoyote shifter Trevor Maxwell is teamed up with CIA agent Alina Bosch to catch a killer. But when the mission becomes much more dangerous than they expected, they’re going to have to ignore the attraction between them and learn how to trust one another to come out on the other side…

The final one for today comes from Gini Koch. Alien Education is the 15th book of her Katherine “Kitty” Katt series, and it will be published on May 2nd.

alien-educationDue to Earth and its solar system becoming a favorite location for disaffected aliens of all kinds, problems with integration of all Earth-bound alien children into schools becomes a major issue that ends up becoming First Lady Kitty Katt-Martini’s new official cause—and one that’s taking up more of her time than is good for anyone. At the same time, moving the school-aged children out of the American Centaurion Embassy Daycare and into regular schools highlights some students and parents who seem suspect to Occasional Room Mom Kitty and Career Day Jeff. As things become the 1960s all over again, all over Earth, the discovery of a plot to mind control the next generation surfaces, and a race against time for the hearts and especially the minds of all Earth’s children begins…including the mind of Jamie Martini.

Ok everyone, which is your good, your bad, and your just plain ugly? Does the different look of the Juliet Lyons covers grab your attention in a good way or a bad? Can you believe Terry Spear is over 20 books in on just one of her series, because I seriously had no clue.

Review – A Darkness Absolute

review iconReviewing isn’t my thing, since I tend to ramble and either give way too much info or not enough. But since I have gotten a few ARC’s I guess it is going to be something I have to work on. In this case, I was lucky enough to get a copy of the second Rockton novel from Kelley Armstrong, A Darkness Absolute. I am a big Armstrong fan, and I find myself following her across genres. In the case of the Rockton books, the stories are mystery/thrillers, which is a nice change of pace.

The idea of Rockton intrigued me from the start. A tiny town in the middle of nowhere, Yukon, that takes in those that need to disappear – both the innocent, and the guilty. Every person there is on the run from their past, from what they’ve done and what was done to them. Into the middle of this lands homicide detective Casey Duncan, now known as Casey Butler, whose particular skill-set is put to use hunting a killer who just might be one of their own.

As of A Darkness Absolute, Casey has been in Rockton for four months, and she already has one major case under her belt. She is settling surprisingly well into her new life, her new relationship with Sheriff Eric Dalton, and her new freedom from her past. I enjoy Casey, she is no-nonsense and tough without being over the top. I always enjoy Kelley Armstrong’s leading men since they are not your traditional “heroes”, and Eric is no exception. He is rough around the edges, foul-mouthed and quick tempered, but he also has an honesty and earnestness about him that balances it out. He doesn’t play games, doesn’t pretend to be anything other than what he is, and he does the best he can to not only keep order in the off-the-grid town, but to keep everyone safe from the dangers surrounding it. And there are many. Casey and Eric must balance their professional and personal lives while investigating some of their own, tracking a killer, and dealing with the mysterious council who controls Rockton – and who has an agenda of their own.

I enjoyed finding out more about the “outside world”, as well. What exists outside the borders of Rockton isn’t always pretty, but it is interesting. We delve a bit more into Eric’s backstory, his family and his feelings about where he came from, and I hope we learn even more in the books to come. The only thing that threw me a bit in A Darkness Absolute was how many times Casey wandered into mortal danger. That happens, and it is what drives the story forward, but it just kept happening. She would be told “don’t do that, because…”, and she would do it anyways. It wasn’t like she fell into the too-stupid-to-live category, and she did usually manage to go a long way towards extracting herself from whatever the situation was, but I did find myself saying “Again?” a couple of times.

So, all in all, I enjoyed A Darkness Absolute a lot. I like the whole idea of Rockton, I like the idea that nobody there is what they seem, and where the story can go from there. I very much like Eric and his relationship with Casey, and I hope to find out more about his past. The action starts at the first page and never stops, and there are a lot of twists and turns that I didn’t see coming. I do wish that Casey might’ve been in peril a couple less times, but it was a small thing that didn’t affect my enjoyment of the story. Definitely worth a read if you are looking for a solid mystery/thriller. You can pick this one up on February 7th.

Pick of the Week – and Best Day Ever!

2017 looks like it is going to be the year where a lot of series I faithfully follow are either wrapping up, spinning off, or changing direction. The Fever series from Karen Marie Moning is one of the latter. This week’s Feversong is the end of the second arc that focused on MacKayla Lane and Jerricho Barrons – or at least that is my understanding of it. Either way, Feversong is my pick of the week, and my pick of the month, and it was probably one of my picks of the year.

feversongSynopsis…

As Mac, Barrons, Ryodan, and Jada struggle to restore control, enemies become allies, right and wrong cease to exist, and the lines between life and death, lust and love, disappear completely. Black holes loom menacingly over Dublin, threatening to destroy the earth, yet the greatest danger is the one MacKayla Lane has unleashed from within: The Sinsar Dubh—a sentient book of unthinkable evil—has possessed her body and will stop at nothing in its insatiable quest for power.

The fate of Man and Fae rests on destroying the book and recovering the long-lost Song of Making, the sole magic that can repair the fragile fabric of the earth. But to achieve these aims, sidhe-seers, the Nine, Seelie, and Unseelie must form unlikely alliances and make heart-wrenching choices. For Barrons and Jada, this means finding the Seelie queen, who alone can wield the mysterious song, negotiating with a lethal Unseelie prince hell-bent on ruling the Fae courts, and figuring out how to destroy the Sinsar Dubh while keeping Mac alive.

This time, there’s no gain without sacrifice, no pursuit without risk, no victory without irrevocable loss. In the battle for Mac’s soul, every decision exacts a tremendous price.

I have the hardcover copy coming, and I was desperate enough to order the Kindle copy, too. And I waited up until 4:00am until it was delivered to my i-pad, just so I could “read the first few chapters”. Yeah, I finished it around 8:00am, but I have to admit that by the end of it I was just skimming things to find out what happened to Jada/Dani and Ryodan, Dancer and Christian. This one has a lot to wrap up, and it will need a much slower, more thorough read for me to get a handle on what I thought about it. My greed didn’t do me, or the book, any favors, and I won’t pull that again. I hope.

And on to the best news ever. I have been spamming Edelweiss with requests for a review copy of White Hot from Ilona Andrews. I mean at least three or four times a week I hit that “submit request” button. Today, I finally got a yes (and it didn’t come with a restraining order, so double win!). While Feversong is one of my most anticipated books of the year, I would go so far as to say that White Hot is tied for third as the book I am most excited for, along with Rituals from Kelley Armstrong and Silver Silence from Nalini Singh. Any guesses as to what I will be doing tonight?