Saturday, March 31, 2012

Shadow Kin By M.J. Scott

Shadow Kin ( The Half-Light City #1)

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Description:

Welcome to the Half-Light City.

Imagine a city divided. On one side, the Night World, ruled by the Blood Lords and the Beast Kind. On the other, the elusive Fae and the humans, protected by their steadfast mages. A city held together by nothing more than a treaty-and even then, just barely...

I was born of a Fae mother, but I had no place amongst her kind. They called me "soulless." An abomination. Perhaps they're right...I'm a wraith, a shadow who slips between worlds. I was given into the service of a Blood Lord who raised me to be his most feared assassin. Still, I'm nothing more than a slave to my master, and to the need that only he can fulfill...

Then he orders me to kill Simon DuCaine, a powerful sunmage. In the blaze of his magic, my own disappears. Instead of seeking revenge, Simon shows me mercy. He wants to free me. But that's one thing my master and his kind will never allow.

And even if I thought I could trust Simon, stepping from the shadow into the light isn't as simple as it sounds...







Review

This is a perfect example of my favourite kind of Urban Fantasy, it has all the elements of a normal Urban Fantasy read mixed with enough romance to keep me interested and intrigued. I loved Lily’s character, she is strong and powerful but what comes with her power is that she is also feared and generally a loner. I started off liking Simon, him wanting to save Lily even though she didn’t think she needed saving, but then I found him to be irritating with when Lily gave herself up to save the lives of others he didn’t understand that it was the best thing to do and when Lily did come back to him, he was so harsh and callous towards her, but he thankfully did see the error of his ways and judgment come the end of the book. Lucious truly was an evil creature, his dark ways and cruel mind was very well portrayed and it was great when he finally bit the dust, bye bye you psycho!

On occasion the jump between Lily being the main point of view to Simon got a little confusing but it wasn’t something that was all that detrimental to the story, it was still enjoyable to read regardless. I did find myself skimming a page here or there which did keep it down from a five star rating for me. If you are on the borderline with liking the Urban Fantasy genre but do enjoy reading Romance, I think this book would be worth a try for you as it is a great blend of the two. I will definitely be picking up the next book in the series, I am very interested to see what is in store for Simon’s brother Guy.






Rating: ««««

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Touch Of Power By Maria V. Snyder

Touch of Power (Avry of Kazan #1)

Genre: Young Adult

Description:

Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry of Kazan assumes their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honored for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading the plague that has decimated the Territories, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos.

Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogues who, shockingly, value her gift above the golden bounty offered for her capture. Their leader, an enigmatic captor-protector with powers of his own, is unequivocal in his demands: Avry must heal a plague-stricken prince—leader of a campaign against her people. As they traverse the daunting Nine Mountains, beset by mercenaries and magical dangers, Avry must decide who is worth healing and what is worth dying for. Because the price of peace may well be her life....







Review
 
Wow, this was a fantastic read, I had to force myself to put the book down at one in the morning to get some sleep, I didn’t want to stop reading.  This book was exciting from start to finish, no boring parts or any skip-worthy pages. It was brilliantly written and the Touch of Power world was fascinating with the Death and Peace Lilies. It was so sad what happened to Flea, I really liked his character and I had hoped that Avry would have found a way to heal him. This read really kept you on the edge of your seat waiting to see what would happen, especially at the end with Avry, very unexpected with how she managed to survive. I also really enjoyed the humour mixed in with the story;

““...things happen that are out of your control."
Kerrick gave him a tight smile. "You mean I'm not omnipotent?"
"You're not even semi-potent."
"Is that even a word?" Kerrick asked.
"He probably means you're impotent," I offered.”

Kerrick started off as a real hard-ass but he grew through-out the book and I was so glad when he manned up for Avry and expressed how he felt before it was too late, even though it was a real close call. I really liked Avry’s strength as a character, there is nothing worse than a helpless female lead and Avry was sure not one of those, due to her ability she was constantly putting her life on the line for others and in some cases even her heart. I really couldn’t get enough of this book, I will have to get the second one when the time comes.





Rating:«««««

Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Goddess Test By Aimee Carter

The Goddess Test (Goddess Test #1)

Genre: Young Adult

Description:

It's always been just Kate and her mom—and her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate's going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won't live past the fall.
Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld—and if she accepts his bargain, he'll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.
Kate is sure he's crazy—until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she'll become Henry's future bride, and a goddess.





Review
 

I am not big on the young adult genre and it is very rare that I am able to find one that completely enthrals me but I really loved this book. I was rather dubious when I read the blurb on the back and the title, but this far exceeded by expectations and I wish I had read it much sooner. Right from the start this read sucked me in, the plot flowed along so well and there wasn’t any useless information or parts where the story dragged. I really loved Kate as a character and she grew so much throughout the book but kept to her morals and was strong but fair, she sacrificed so much for others and I was glad that it all turned out for the best in the end.

There were so many twists and turns and the ending was brilliant and finding out the whole story and seeing it unravel, finding out that the characters in the story were not all that they appeared to be, I didn’t see that coming at all. The only part I predicted was the whole story with James, but other than him everything else took me pleasantly by surprise. The way this book is written is genius and the whole seven deadly sins angle was brilliant. I generally find any book with a mythology angle not able to hold my interest or just not my thing but I could not get enough of this read, I wanted it to keep going. I have much hope for the second one in the series and I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.




Rating:
«««««

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Giveaway! Earthly Concerns by Xavier Axelson

Blurb:

Between love and loss, there is obligation…
It was a peaceful night when Barrett and his daughter were driving home… then something happened.  Something sinister.
Between shadow and light, there is uncertainty…
Now the only person Barrett can turn to for help is Anson, a man gifted with psychic abilities beyond reason. But Anson is also his ex-boyfriend, a man whose heart he’d already broken.
If you can see, you have to help.
As Anson delves deeper into the circumstances surrounding Barrett’s accident, he begins to realize that he’s not only in a race against time, but in a battle against his own broken heart and the terrifying understanding that whatever has taken Barrett’s child is a force of evil beyond anything either man has ever encountered.
And between decision and consequences, there are… Earthly Concerns


Excerpt:

How could I just go over, and if I did, would I just be stumbling back into the pit of snakes I had just narrowly escaped the first time?  I thought this and a hundred other dangerous thoughts until I saw him begin to stand up. I waved him down, then went over and sat down.
Apparently, I thought the best course of action was to dive right in, avoid any further uncomfortable thoughts from belching up from the cesspool that I was creating in my skull.
“Tell me everything,” I blurted, trying to avoid looking into his eyes.
“You look good, all hot and cute,” he said, trying to maintain his smile, but the weight of his sadness was too intense. Instead, he managed a pained grimace.
“Thanks.” I wanted to say more, return the compliment, but found I couldn’t; he was a keen listener and would be able to detect any false sentiment I might throw out. I stared down at the menu and tried to ignore my heart, which had once again taken up its incessant thrumming.
“Thanks for coming,” he said.
I didn’t look up, but could feel him staring at me.
When the waitress came over, we ordered. Without the menu to stare at, I looked up and past him.
“Anson.” He said my name like it was some sort of invocation.
Did he believe he was dreaming?  I could only imagine the nightmare of not knowing where your child is and if she would ever come back.
“Tell me everything,” I repeated, my voice steady. I lowered my eyes and faced him; and seeing his sadness, I swallowed hard.
“It’s unreal,” he said, this time looking away from me, his eyes glistening. “I’m not sure I know what’s happened.”
The waitress arrived with two small cups of clear broth with some vegetables in them and refilled our waters.
“I’m sorry,” I said, my eyes riveted on him. I couldn’t believe I was sitting across from him in the same place I had met him once before; the day he wanted to return a t-shirt I had left at his place after one of our interludes.
Even now, looking beaten and tormented, the man somehow managed to provoke me in ways other men hadn’t. I saw him as beautiful and felt my stomach lurch. I looked at his brown eyes that I remembered looking gold in the sun, and his oddly handsome face. Not a traditionally good looking face, but handsome in a bookish, learned way. I felt my body begin to respond.


My review for this read can be found here: Earthly Concerns Review

My interview with author Xavier Axelson can be found here: Interview with Xavier Axelson



`~ Giveaway~`

Thanks to the generosity of author Xavier Axelson, I have one PDF copy of his newest release "Earthly Concerns" to give away to one lucky person!
Fill out rafflecopter widget to enter :)


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Lily By Xavier Axelson

Lily

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Description:

Being a single Dad is hard enough...but when Pryor loses his daughter Lily in an unthinkable event, he thinks he has experienced the ultimate horror. When Lily returns, he realizes his nightmare has only just begun...






Review

This may have only been a short read but it was beautiful. It was so heart breaking the way Pryor had to suffer with the loss of his daughter and that he had waited so long for the day for her to come back only to have to let her go again, thankfully he had Ned to help him through. I really loved Ned as a character; he’s so caring and strong, just wanting to make everything better for Pryor. The relationship between the two really made the book for me; they are just a perfect pair. The emotion leaps off the pages and sucks you right into the story; I wanted to read more and more. Not at all your standard paranormal read, it’s deep and meaningful. I really enjoy the way Xavier Axelson writes; the way he uses descriptive elements throughout the story makes the story flow so well and allows you to get carried away.

I don’t think there are any negatives to this read for me, except that maybe that it wasn’t long enough, I wanted more! But that is just a compliment to how much of a great read this was. Even though the ending wasn’t a classic “happy” one where everything is tied up in a nice little bow, it was suited to the story and it was heart breakingly perfect. 




Rating: ««««

Monday, March 19, 2012

Author Interview: Xavier Axelson

About the Author:

Xavier Axelson is a writer of erotica for Silver Publishing and Seventh Window Publications. He is also the Los Angeles Sex Advice Columnist and Fringe Artists columnist for Examiner.com.

Xavier has worked in the adult industry for over 15 years. During this time, he has assisted countless people with exploring their healthy sexual needs, questions, and lifestyles. He has trained as a dungeon master, worked for a notorious Hollywood Madame as a consultant and as a talent agent for the adult film industry.


Writes for: http://www.examiner.com/la-in-los-angeles/francis-xavier




Interview



What are some of your favourite reads?

I really am a fan of British literature and like a good spy story and definitely suspenseful thrillers. Eye of the Needle, If Tomorrow Comes, and Dream of Orchids are three favorites that come to mind.


What inspired you to write this genre specifically?

I was inspired by an article I read about women writing Gay erotica and thought, “If they can do it, maybe I can too.” I’ve had some experience being both Gay and Erotic. I then found a call for submissions asking for Gay Christmas Romances and wrote Christmas Eve at The Powers That Be Café and things kind of took off from there.


Does anything in particular inspire your books?

I’m inspired by all kinds of things; Lily my release prior to Earthly Concerns was inspired by a horrendous amount of construction going on by my home. I started to fantasize that the noise and chaos woke some horrendous creature living in the nearby woods and it came down from it’s lair and wreaked havoc. I incorporated that idea with the true story of a young girl being dragged off her swing set by a coyote. The story I’m writing now was inspired by a shoe I saw in a recent copy of Vogue, so my ideas come from everywhere.


What was your first writing experience like?

My first writing experience happened in grade school. I wrote a seven page story and turned it in only to be out done by a kid who wrote 10 pages, I immediately took the story back and made it 15 just to be sure mine was longer, lol.  


Have you ever had any regrets with something you have written or wished you could go back and write something differently?

No, I made a promise to myself when I started getting published that I would never defend my writing, or apologize for it. I think if you stay honest to yourself and your creative path then there is no reason to regret.


Do you think there is enough support for writers of the same-sex/gay genre?

I’ve found a tremendous amount of support, I’ve not felt any negative consequences for writing in the Gay genre. Maybe I’ve been lucky. I think it’s important to support all creative forms of expression, it’s a tough enough to get your work out there without additional aggravation.


There is quite a large female fan base for the m/m romance genre, why do you think that is?

I think women see themselves in the characters being written in M/M romances and that’s great! I think women have had as hard a road to plow as the Gay community and so it would make sense that they see themselves in the writing of Gay characters and vice versa.


In your book “Earthly Concerns” Anson had psychic abilities, do you yourself believe in psychics?

I believe in psychic ability, I think everyone is psychic to some extent, some more than others. How boring the world would be without the gifts of insight and foresight.


Did you find writing something paranormal harder than a book more contemporary or “realistic” based?

No, because I think life is pretty paranormal at times, and while there are paranormal elements to both Lily and Earthly Concerns, I feel both the books have contemporary settings with realistic themes driving the stories forward.


Any final thoughts or comments?

Just remember, pressure makes diamonds.
 
 
 
 
Earthly Concerns by Xavier Axelson

Between love and loss, there is obligation… It was a peaceful night when Barrett and his daughter were driving home… then something happened. Something sinister. Between shadow and light, there is uncertainty… Now the only person Barrett can turn to for help is Anson, a man gifted with psychic abilities beyond reason. But Anson is also his ex-boyfriend, a man whose heart he’d already broken. If you can see, you have to help. As Anson delves deeper into the circumstances surrounding Barrett’s accident, he begins to realize that he’s not only in a race against time, but in a battle against his own broken heart and the terrifying understanding that whatever has taken Barrett’s child is a force of evil beyond anything either man has ever encountered. And between decision and consequences, there are… Earthly Concerns


 My review for this book can be found here : Earthly Concerns Review


Friday, March 16, 2012

Earthly Concerns By Xavier Axelson

Earthly Concerns

*Submitted for Review by Author*

Genre:
Paranormal Romance

Decription:

Between love and loss, there is obligation…

It was a peaceful night when Barrett and his daughter were driving home… then something happened. Something sinister.

Between shadow and light, there is uncertainty…

Now the only person Barrett can turn to for help is Anson, a man gifted with psychic abilities beyond reason. But Anson is also his ex-boyfriend, a man whose heart he’d already broken.

If you can see, you have to help.

As Anson delves deeper into the circumstances surrounding Barrett’s accident, he begins to realize that he’s not only in a race against time, but in a battle against his own broken heart and the terrifying understanding that whatever has taken Barrett’s child is a force of evil beyond anything either man has ever encountered.


And between decision and consequences, there are… Earthly Concerns





Review

This was a rather quick and easy read but I did find it enjoyable none the less, I do love a good man love read. The imagery was very well described throughout; it really helped you get entranced in the story and gave the read a spooky edge. This was very much a paranormal read, with a sprinkling of steam. I found myself wanting to read more about Anson and Barrett’s past, more about how Barrett came to be a father, what they will do now that they have rediscovered each other. I really liked the psychic element to the story, sometimes in books that just isn’t done very well or done in a very cliché way, but I found it came across very well in this read. I also liked the choice of character names, character names can really make a book less inviting for me or make me not want to read it and reading the same names over and over in so many books just gets boring.

I only found a couple of negatives, mainly with the ending; I just found it ended quite abruptly and left me asking a lot of questions to myself and really thinking about what had happened to try and decipher some answers. I think this would be a good start for someone who likes a little bit of romance in their paranormal reads and is looking to try something with a same-sex based couple. I hope to read more from this author in the future.




Rating: «««

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Dirty Little Secret

15.03.2012



 
 
 
 
Question of the Week
 
 

"What are your top 3 movies?"


I generally tend to like movies that are a little quirky or out of the ordinary. My top three movies in no particular order are:

1. Juno
I just love Juno's unique nature and sense of humor. Not to mention the sarcasm!









2. Napoleon Dynamite

One of the most weird and quirky movies I think I have ever seen.
This movie never gets old, I just keep watching it over and over again. I always laugh at Tina the Llama.








3. Labyrinth

Hello David Bowie!
I use to love watching this movie growing up and I still love it. I even have the soundtrack I am so obsessed with it.  *swoon*






Thursday, March 8, 2012

Cold As Ice By Cassandra Carr

Cold As Ice (Buffalo Intimidators #2)

*ARC Submitted for review by Author*

Genre:
Erotic Romance

Description:

Luc, Carter, and Jake make up the Buffalo Intimidators' top scoring line. Each of them is also a client of massage therapist Eva. When they decide they want to be more than clients, they approach her. Eva's been secretly lusting after the guys for months but was afraid to say anything, trying to keep everything on a professional level.

She agrees to a menage relationship, but when people on the team start getting sick, will it turn into more than a fun roll in the hay with her hockey boys?



Review
 
You haven’t read a good ménage or quatre as it were unless you’ve read a Cassandra Carr, this was in fact my first quatre read and I very much enjoyed it, the steamy scenes are so well written and never too graphic but never leave you feeling disappointed. Luc, Carter and Jake have been coming to Eva for messages but they all want something more from her, they want her all for themselves, and they love to share. Eva is unsure of what to do at first but after a little thinking she knows that she wants what the guys want as well. Out of the three men, I think Jake might have been my favourite...or maybe Carter, who am I kidding is it impossible to pick just one! I liked how all the characters meshed well together and each had their own personality that leapt off the page. It was also nice that the characters from the previous book “Head Games” also got a mention. There was some good humour mixed in with the story, I just loved Eva’s spark;

“Eva glowered at him. “Unless you want the possibility of me kicking a very sensitive area, I’d suggest you not tickle my foot.” Luc backed up a step and both of the other guys chuckled...”.

I devoured this book in one sitting, I couldn’t stop reading. I wanted to read more and more. I also liked the trouble that came with the supplement situation, it added a realness to the read and really sucked you in to what was happening and left you eager to find out how everything was to turn out. I think I liked the first book a little more than this one but this was still a book that I really liked; Cassandra Carr writes sport themed erotic reads like no one else. 







Rating:
««««

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Rock Hard By Olivia Cunning

Rock Hard (Sinners on Tour #2)

Genre: Erotic Romance

Description:

An ultimatum can break your heart....

Every night lead singer, Sed Lionheart whips thousands of women into a frenzy with his voice alone. But the stage is the only place Sed feels any passion since he lost Jessica...

If you’re not willing to break all the rules...

It shattered her heart, but law student Jessica broke off her engagement to Sed, determined to be successful on her own terms. But no other man can ever hold a candle to Sed...

Then a chance meeting and tortuously close quarters lead to uncontrollable flares of passion and rediscovery of their unique penchant for public encounters. Now, in addition to the risk of mutual heartbreak every time they get together, they’re in danger of truly scandalous public exposure...







Review

 Just as great as the first, I am in serious love with these books. Sed and Jessica are both as stubborn and bold as each other and I couldn’t get enough of them. I think you could go two ways with how you interpret Jessica as a character, you could either see her as spoilt and selfish, or you could see her as a strong and an independent woman, I took the latter interpretation. Misunderstandings seems to be a prominent feature for the two of them and them both being so hot headed leads to some frustrating situations. The whole situation with Trey left me on the edge of my seat and unable to put the book down until I read how it works out, thankfully that all turned out well, he was going down a real downward spiral through a lot of the book. I was so happy when Jessica stood up for herself with the situation Ellington, even though it turned out to be not what she expected, I still hate Ellington though. The ending was so cute and was very suited.

I could go on and on about how much I enjoyed reading this. It’s entertaining, emotional, steamy, everything I love in a book, perfection. Each character stands out on the page and isn’t lost, even with all the characters that turn up throughout the book; they don’t detract from the main story or confuse you. This second book in the series didn’t let me down one bit. If you haven’t started on this series and love a nice hot read, I would highly recommend you do. “Sinners on Tour” is definitely one of my top five series that I have read, fantastic. I will eagerly be awaiting the third in the series; I can’t wait to read it.




Rating:«««««

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Only The Strongest Survive By Ian Fox

Only The Strongest Survive

*Submitted for review by author*

Genre: Suspense/Crime

Description:

The novel opens with a hair-tingling scene, as two men kidnap Emely Donnovan, one of the wealthiest women in America.She finds herself locked in the basement of a remote house in the middle of a forest, watched over by one of her captors who makes her buy and sell stocks for him so he can get rich. Her challenge to survive becomes even more complicated when Emely’s captor falls in love with her.




Review
 
This was nothing like I have read before and I have to say, I found reading this just a little bit disturbing. The rape scene in book did not appeal to me on any level, I think if it had been more glazed over or just alluded to without going into the act like it did it would have been more suited for me. I just found it an unnecessary part; they didn’t particularly add anything to the intrigue of the story for me. I couldn’t connect with the lead female character Emely, she went from wanting to escape and live, to loving her captor? To loving the man who raped her, tried to kill her and held her hostage and then weeping over his death...I just didn’t understand that. Sometimes I found jumping between Emely’s old past experiences confusing to keep up with but generally it was fairly easy to read.

Unfortunately, I just don’t think this was my kind of book. It was a bit too intense for my liking though I couldn’t help but keep reading to find out how everything turned out. The expression of the emotions of each character was done well and I think the atmosphere of the book was also written to perfection. It unfortunately just wasn’t my type of read, a tad too dark for me.




Rating:
««